Less Blue Heron, St Augustine, Florida

Lesser Blue Heron, St. Augustine, Florida

Interesting words for Wednesday: Lapidify means to turn to stone. I also like the noun blatherskite, a person “given to voluble, empty talk.”

Books and Writing:

At Tor.com, Christina Orlando talks about reading books late. Lots of good recommendations here!

Kris Kathryn Rusch has, understandably, a strong indie-pub position, but this article is useful and interesting.  It’s about traditional publishing and how it’s faring in the pandemic (spoiler alert: not very well according to her.

File770 doesn’t usually do author guest-posts in the style of “The Big Idea” or “My Favorite Bit,” but they did with Dan Hanks’s  new book Captain Moxley and the Embers of Empire. Frankly, he kind of had me at “Moxley” because it’s so obviously almost “moxie.”

Does this comic book look amazing and lush?

Wika, by artist Olivier Ledroit

Wika, by artist Olivier Ledroit


Cat Rambo highlighted these on her Patreon. We’ve discussed fashion face coverings in the Covid era. Amazon delivers with LED party masks. (You need these, admit it.)

Continuing the face covering theme, AARP offers a couple quick suggestions for how to stop your glasses from fogging up when you put on your face covering. I had seen these before but it’s nice to have them in one handy spot.

Anyone living in the western USA, if you don’t have Airnow.gov already, you may find it depressing but useful.

Thanks to File770 for this, from Bandcamp: Nine Asian musicians whose work is inspired by speculative fiction.

I hadn’t heard about “Unblock and Apologize” on Facebook, but Adam-Troy Castro has, and he is having none of it. Apparently, the idea is described in the title; a suggestion that you unblock everyone you’ve ever blocked on FB and apologize to them. Um, why? Castro asks that question, and goes on to add his opinion that this is not simply an ignorant, shallow, ultimately well-meaning idea, but something more calculated. (Thanks to File770.)

Elizabeth Holmes was lauded in business press as the first woman CEO of a “unicorn,” a startup worth over $1 billion. Her company Theranos (not to be confused with Thanos), proved to be a unicorn in an unfortunate way—mostly mythological. Once it was proven that the claims Holmes and her business partner made were fraudulent, the US took legal action against both of them for wire fraud. In the latest chapter, Holmes’s defense has now brought forward a mental health issue which they state will “have bearing on the issue of guilt.” I don’t like or admire Elizabeth Holmes, but she is going to make a great character for someone to play in a “ripped from the headlines” movie someday.

Scientists find evidence of traces of life in Venus’s atmosphere.

Film, TV and Streaming:

Damien Walter’s take on the Dune trailer.  If you watch the video, you basically get to see the trailer more that once, so have fun with that.

Remember The New Mutants? (I ask because I didn’t.) While their opening weekend was poor, they are leveling off since they have almost no competition in cinemas.

Mulan has made about $38 million internationally. It didn’t do well in China, though, despite all the reshaping of the film, and all the expectations.

Thanks to File 770 once again for this nice tribute video to Dame Diana Rigg.


This is a nice article aboutt one of my favorite mountains, Mt. Shasta in northern California. The dormant volcano is beautiful, stands more or less alone… and is easily seen from the interstate 5 highway. It’s also a magnet for various spiritual beliefs.


  • Marion Deeds

    Marion Deeds, with us since March, 2011, is the author of the fantasy novella ALUMINUM LEAVES. Her short fiction has appeared in the anthologies BEYOND THE STARS, THE WAND THAT ROCKS THE CRADLE, STRANGE CALIFORNIA, and in Podcastle, The Noyo River Review, Daily Science Fiction and Flash Fiction Online. She’s retired from 35 years in county government, and spends some of her free time volunteering at a second-hand bookstore in her home town.