The new year is almost upon us, and I’ve neglected this blog for far too long. When I last left off, I was an old woman with shingles – I’m still an old woman, but fortunately the shingles has passed. Since then I went to a Time Lord Ball dressed as a lizard woman from the dawn of time, held a Whovian birthday party, and sold geeky ornaments at a craft faire. All topics I meant to blog about in depth, all stuck solidly in the past.
Instead of songs about bad relationships or drug use, they write geek music about Pokemon and Star Trek.
I didn’t always live in fear of fireworks. I still think they’re pretty in small doses on very rare occasions as long as I know when they’re going to start and stop. I realize that much structure is anathema to the idea of fireworks, but if you’re a pet owner in a dense part of the city, then you know my pain.
A couple months ago, I gave my one-year-old shepherd-spaniel mix Chiana a new toy to play with. She was, at this time, on probation with regards to getting the run of the house. Though she enjoys destroying things, we figured she couldn’t do much damage with the doors to all the bedrooms closed. What I failed to take into account was that her new toy was flat enough to slip under the living room sofa. As best we can figure it, she attempted to retrieve her toy, and with her sharp little claws tore into the base fabric of one of the 24-year-old pink leather couches – the cushions of which had already been torn by her and Pilot.
I’ve never seen an episode of Oprah in my life, but I understand that periodically she would share whatever tickled her fancy with her audience, and today’s my birthday, so I thought it would be a good time to share the things that have tickled mine. (Metaphorically.) I suppose with Thanksgiving coming up I could also title this post ‘Things I’m Grateful For’ but that enters the dodgy world of ending sentences with prepositions. Mostly, I want to share some neat or useful things I’ve found, and I love any excuse to use bullet points.
The story of The Practical Orphan’s Guide began about nine years ago, when I was a freshwoman at the all-female Mills College in Oakland, California. I was taking a class called ‘Advanced Fiction for Children and Young Adults,’ and was supposed to be working on a story about a group of kids who were the result of a mad scientist’s experiment meeting up in their teens and discovering their special powers. (It was very X-Men.) Whenever I got stuck on that, which was often, I worked on what was then known as Practical Kate, a spoof of sorts on all the fantasy literature about young orphans who have magical adventures. In its very first iteration it was in the third person, but once I switched to first person PoV, the book really took off.
It’s been too long since I’ve blogged, and while I hope to have a new episode of YA Rewind up by tomorrow, it’s already been delayed a week, so I feel like I need to apologize, which is kind of silly, especially since I have no idea how many people even listen to my little podcast. The only person I’m responsible to these days is myself, but the lack of new Hollywood Jane content is starting to weigh on me like a tell-tale heart. Thump-thump. Thump-thump.
There has been a lot of bad blood in the geek world in the last couple of months, particularly around the subject of women in nerdom. Apparently there is some phenomenon (which I’ve never personally experienced) of girls pretending to be geeks to get attention. The thing that gets me is that I believe you can be a geek about anything. Geekery is about passion, not cred. There are music geeks, architecture geeks, fashion geeks, and even sports geeks. Comics and sci-fi/fantasy geeks don’t have ownership of the label, we’re just the public face.