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Other listening

On the other hand, a string of stories at Podcastle left me feeling alienated, being centred as they were so strongly on US self-mythologising. A very distinct sense, which I have the privilege of experiencing relatively rarely, that I was not and never could be the audience for these stories.

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Sunday Story Ratings #77: Tell Me Who to Kill by Ian Rankin

Tell Me Who to Kill by Ian Rankin

Originally published 2003 in Mysterious Pleasures; this edition 2004, 2005 printing

Publisher: Allison & Busby Limited

Collected in: The Best British Mysteries 2005 (ed. Maxim Jakubowski)



Parental Guidance recommended for audiences under 15 years of age

(D, V)

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Sunday Story Ratings #66: Usagi Yojimbo Book 3.3: Return of the Blind Swordspig by Stan Sakai

Usagi Yojimbo Book 3: The Wanderer's Road: 3. Return of the Blind Swordspig by Stan Sakai

Originally published July 1988 Fantagraphics Books in Usagi Yojimbo Vol. 1 Issue 9; this edition August 2010

Fantagraphics Books



Parental Guidance recommended for audiences under 15 years of age

(V, D)

Violence {PG)

Drug Use (G) {Tea}




Only male characters, and a tokagé (Spot) of unknown gender.

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Musing around

On the way home from work I somehow had an idea for a role-playing campaign. The concept is rather simple: the villain has stolen the abstraction of narrative imperative and is using this to reshape global civilisation to her vision with the force of historical inevitability. The task faced by the player characters is to succeed in sufficiently extravagant and difficult endeavours that they convince the setting it is actually they who are its primary heroes and narrative drivers, this being the only way to wrest control of narrative imperative from the villain.

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Zombie fiction

For a while I have taken to tagging as 'a zombie story' any story in which defeat means being transformed into the enemy. Typically where defeat is something as difficult to avoid as being touched. This seems to be a common trope in the new series of Doctor Who, including The Empty Child / The Doctor Dances, somewhat implicitly in Tooth and Claw, 42, Silence in the Library / Forest of the Dead and The Waters of Mars. Which does not even include all the other episodes in which characters are transformed into enemies or used as components thereof.

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Random report

Looked in on ABC3 a few nights ago, which I had not done in many months. They had some show on called Vampire Knight, and from the description I was thinking it would be similar to The Worst Witch so I decided to try watching an episode. Surprised to find it is actually a dubbed anime series as I hadn't thought that to be the sort of thing they air.

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One of my pet peeves

Last night I read a blog comment in which someone claimed ey otherwise enjoys reading A Song of Ice and Fire, but are frequently thrown out of the story by too-modern word use on the part of the characters. Specific example used being the word 'fuck'.

I would be all on board with this except that:

(a) According to the sources I've checked, including the Online Etymology Dictionary, the word dates back to at least the 1500s and

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(trying to sleep. maybe letting some words out will help. no longer the case, having fallen asleep then and finishing now days later.)

Worlds have to come from somewhere. Either you start with something from nothing - divinity or not is detail - or your world is eternal, infinitely old.

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Forgot to add this last night - also in The Hungry Earth Amy suggests to the Silurians that if they want to live in harmony with humans there are several abandoned places they could inhabit, listing the Australian Outback, Nevada plains and Sahara.


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