The Beginning of a Short Story

Well, we hit $12k, so I suppose it's time to post the beginning of the short story that I'll be adding to the book as the final component if we hit $14,000. All of this was written basically before Neoreaction a Basilisk even started, while I was on a Providence-inspired Lovecraft kick and fooling around with my own spin on "modern day Lovecraft." I got through, basically, the first section (like "Call of Cthulhu," there's a distinctly episodic structure to the plot as I envision it) before getting distracted by accidentally writing a book. But that ended up giving me the ideas I needed to finish it, and the modified idea for the story seems like it'll fit well into the book, not unlike how "The Immortality of Leelah" fit into Guided by the Beauty of Their Weapons. So, all disclaimers, this is first draft prose, and I'm still not a comfortable fiction writer at all. But if you like it, there's four days to get the Kickstarter up to $14,000. (And at $13,000, don't forget, I'll be doing a magical ritual to neuter the alt-right.)


This site ...

Saturday Waffling (May 28th, 2016)

Very short today, mostly because getting this up is the last thing I have to do before bed and I'm tired. Though I suspect I'll be back later today with a proper excerpt of the short story that will be the $14,000 stretch goal for Neoreaction a Basilisk, as the Kickstarter's at $11,750 or so, which means we'll probably make $12k today. Here's your convenient link for that.

On the subject of that book, Kit Power did a review of it for Ginger Nuts of Horror, and James Wylder did an interview with me for his site. Both are fun if you've got a few minutes.

Finally, 101 Claras to See, a fan anthology on Clara Oswald co-edited by Caitlin Smith, is in its last weekend of availabilty for a hard copy, and also has an electronic edition for sale. I've got a piece in it that I'm not going to be reprinting elsewhere, and it's also got contributions from both Jane and Jill. That's available here.

And that'll pretty much do us for this morning. Really hoping to be back this afternoon with a chunk of short ...

Eruditorum Presscast: Alex Reed (Neoreaction a Basilisk 5)

To round out the series of podcasts promoting Neoreaction a Basilisk (alltogether now, currently available on Kickstarter) I am thrilled to finally have Alex Reed on the Eruditorum Presscast. Alex, of course, is the primary architect of Seeming, and so in one sense has been on every Eruditorum Presscast, since our theme music is of course "Worldburners Unite," previously described as "a protest song as imagined by Thomas Ligotti. That's available here for your listening pleasure.

We remain on that exciting/stressful bubble where we could well make the last stretch goal if the weekend goes well, but it's in no way certain. So I figured I'd talk a bit about the most expensive edition (well, aside from the original plates, which have been snapped up), the Sigil Edition. I've not actually mocked one of these up yet (I'm not acquiring the printer I'll need until after the move), but I've got the next best thing as an image here, namely a photo of the audio edition of Unearthing, which came with a transcript of the piece printed in the same style I'll be using. I'd completely forgotten this was a ...

Thinking Out Loud on TERFs

Promoting a Kickstarter is far from an exact science, but this seemed to work well for the Lizard People essay, so here goes for TERFs. As before, if all of this sounds interesting and you want it to happen, the trick is to back Neoreaction a Basilisk on Kickstarter. I suspect that if we can make $12k and the TERFs essay by the end of the weekend, the end-of-campaign momentum over the last two days will take us over the $14k line.

Anyway, TERFs, or Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist. Basically, a set of feminists for whom a major (or at times the major) component of their feminism is the belief that trans women are not real women and ought be excluded from female spaces. More virulent strains consider the entire notion of being trans an excuse for men to invade women's spaces and treats all trans women as rapists. They are, as you can imagine, absolutely fucking terrible. And they're terrible in ways that aren't dissimilar to how various bits of the alt-right are terrible. (In fact, one of the notable things about them is their willingness to work with right-wing groups on things like bathroom bills.) So ...

White Screen

First - welcome Josh!

Second - I was recently a guest on the Oi! Spaceman team's new(ish) Red Dwarf podcast 'Searching for Fuchal', chatting about the Series 1 episode 'Balance of Power', here.


It's the 22nd of May 2016.  Jack has no idea what's in the charts.

Jack’s at the movies… because, for all the snark, Jack loves big SF movies, even when they’re also superhero movies starring good-but-ridiculously-overrated British actors who unfairly monopolise jobs in the industry.  Jack has also always had a soft spot for the X-Men movies.  For all their flaws, Jack likes the way they try to engage with material politics and history.  They do so far more successfully than the Watchmen movie did, though Jack wouldn’t want to comment on the source material as he’s never read it.  (Jack plans to.  Jack read From Hell at Phil’s insistence, and loved it.) 

Jack’s waiting for the movie to start.  Jack is only mildly irritated by the routine discomfort of the seating, and the less-routine smell of someone’s dirty feet from somewhere else in the theatre.  (Jack’s irritation at the latter will grow throughout the ...

Comics Reviews (May 25th, 2016)

DC Universe Rebirth #1


DC Universe Rebirth #1 Review That Isn't Just a Poop Emoji

This seems almost entirely unnecessary, but of course, that's still more necessary than this. I'd say "never mind the appallingly stupid incorporation of Watchmen," but of course, I really can't do that. Suffice it to say that Johns demonstrates absolutely zero understanding of Watchmen or of Doctor Manhattan, that the characters teased elsewhere to be Watchmen-related look like utterly stupid and banal twists, and that this entire farrago appears motivated out of nothing so much as sheer and utter contempt for the best writer DC has ever or will ever have. On top of that, the issue is a confused muddle of plot teases, most of them fairly incoherent to me as someone who's dropped most of his DC books over the course of the New 52 experiment that this book not only brings an end to but attempts to loudly reject. I don't know these people. Two-panel cameos don't make me care. Johns can stamp his feet all he wants about legacy, but the only legacy this confirms is DC's long history of screwing over ...

Sensor Scan: Gargoyles

During the decade roughly spanning the years 1985-1995, Western animation, previously seen as something of a washed-up embarrassment of an industry that only produced patronizing throwaway entertainment for particularly dumb children, underwent a widespread creative and commercial renaissance. One of the pioneering studios of this period, which animation historians have imaginatively dubbed “The Renaissance Age of Animation”, was Disney, whose new CEO Michael Eisner (whom longtime readers will recognise as the former chief of Paramount who worked with Gene Roddenberry on Star Trek Phase II) sought to reverse the company's ailing fortunes by doubling down on creative quality control. For inspiration, Disney's animators looked to (in some cases copied) the style of Japanese anime, which was at its zenith in the mid-80s, and in particular the work of Hayao Miyazaki. The initial result of this was Adventures of the Gummi Bears, a high-profile Saturday Morning Cartoon Show that revitalized the block and genre by emphasizing high production values, tight, quality storytelling and a strong focus on fantasy action and adventure narrative. Adventures of the Gummi Bears was an international smash hit, singlehandedly ushered in a brand new age for animation and forced Disney's competitors to follow suit ...

Introducing Vaka Rangi

Eruditorum Press is thoroughly ecstatic to announce that we have been joined by Josh Marsfelder, who will be publishing the continuing adventures of his blog Vaka Rangi with us every Wednesday morning, starting in about sixty seconds. Vaka Rangi, his sprawling personal memoir and critical history of the Star Trek franchise. So far he's made it through the whole of the Original Series and The Next Generation, as well as the first season of Deep Space Nine, along with the entirety of the anime Dirty Pair, because Vaka Rangi is that sort of blog, which is to say an awesome one, and all of that is available in our archives for your reading pleasure, so basically I hope you didn't have any other work to do this week. 

The obvious point of comparison for Vaka Rangi, and I'm sure Josh won't mind my pointing it out, is TARDIS Eruditorum, and certainly anyone familiar with my Doctor Who work will find many similarities in Josh's approach. But where TARDIS Eruditorum's default position was that Doctor Who was basically a good thing, Josh's relationship with Star Trek much more wonderfully fraught, full of frustrated ...

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