Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Another day, another book

Finished The Kill Artist last night and ordered the next book in the series from Paperbackswap. I liked it just fine, and if the author stays at that level in future books, maybe the Kellermans will have to share shelf space with another prolific name.

Started Along Came A Spider. I got this one because it keeps popping up on my Amazon recommendations. So far, I am liking this one, too. Could it be I have found two new authors with vast numbers of books for me to devour? Oh, joy!

I am liking this one because (in addition to good writing style) the story goes back and forth between the crime investigator and the serial killer/kidnapper. This is a style I especially enjoy because I am a sicfuk - I like the POV of the evil characters. The master of the genre for me is Thomas Harris, (The Silence of the Lambs (Hannibal Lector), et. al.) although Jonathon Kellerman portrays an awesomely fk'd up killer in The Butcher's Theater.

The Butcher's Theater also takes place in Israel, which is a bonus for me. A serial killer in NY or LA is trite. Patterson places Spider in DC - OK, I haven't read too many books which take place in DC. It's foreign enough for a while.

Monday, January 26, 2009

I read dead people

Yeah, OK, so Bones in Deja Dead: 10th Anniversary Edition (Temperance Brennan Novels) was a bit of an idiot. But no moreso than any male lead character who suddenly proclaims, "Now it's personal!" and goes into the jungle/dark house/loony bin/sex club by himself, without letting anyone know.

Of course, the main difference between the male and female lead characters is that female ones travel with a vagina on their person. (Hat tip to Elayne Boosler) Serial killers aside, I am hard pressed to imagine just how dumb a woman has to be to go into dangerous places alone. On the other hand (can you tell I'm Jewish?) I used to go into what were once bad neighborhoods to buy porn and go to sex clubs. Hm.

Nope. Still wouldn't go chasing after a serial killer.

Anyhoo, decided to give the series another chance. After all, Alex Delaware has been beaten up, kidnapped, tortured and shot at over his dozens of books, and I keep reading his adventures. But if she spends have the next book lurking around danger and hiding useful facts from police and other armed people who are supposed to be between her and bad guys, I might give up on it and continue to enjoy the TV show.

One thing that is odd, though, the first book was in Canada. I think the TV show would be even more interesting if it was set there, too. Ahh, well.

The wife picked up Mistress of the Art of Death, so I moved in on a new writer for me, Daniel Silva, and the book I chose is The Kill Artist. It's been a long time since I read an honest to goodness spy novel, and I am enjoying this one, despite some well worn tropes. Bitter former agent pulled back in because his nemesis is back? Check. Said nemesis responsible for the death of a relative of said bitter former agent? Check. Impossibly gorgeous model/spy/ex-lover involved in the case? Check.

In a way, it's pretty typical. But I am enjoying it anyway. I will most likely find more books by this guy.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Thrillers & chillers

Finished Twisted, and I'll keep it. I had thought to move on to Mistress of the Art of Death, one of the books I got through Paperbackswap, but after a few pages, I realized I am still in a junkier reading phase. Historical fiction wasn't working for me. So, I pulled up Deja Dead, by Kathy Reichs.

It's kind of funny, but even though I like police procedurals and I like stories with graphic violence and/or serial killers, there are some authors I never got around to. I decided to give them a try on the swap program, because all in all, the average book I get through there costs less than $2.50 - what I spent to mail a book to someone else.

Reichs is a gamble. I only tried her because the wife and I occasionally enjoy an episode of Bones.

So far, it's fine, I like the descriptions of the science of forensics. But the story is bending toward the "don't do in there, it's DARK!" sort of backseat reader reaction. You know, that's where you are watching a movie or reading a book and you think, "Holy crap, if that was me, I'd have called 911, the FBI, the CIA and I'd be hiding in the closet with a baseball bat and my cell phone!" Or, "Gee, I wonder if going to the abandoned mansion on the night of the full moon without telling anyone where you were going is such a great idea..."

I will always take a certain amount of this. After all, lead characters acting stupidly is sometimes the best reason why there IS a story. "I heard a mysterious noise and called 911 and the police came and arrested the peeping Tom" is not going to make any sales. Going out to investigate, no matter how stupid it seems, is the story. OK, I will go along for a while.

But I like it when the characters get to know better. The kids in the Harry Potter books go off on adventures and get into danger and they don't tell the grownups because...they're KIDS. Later on, Harry has an epiphany as he realizes what he wants is a grown up to advise him, one who cares about him, who is wise and can help. The first time he actually goes directly for help the minute something bad happened, I felt good about the growth of the character. Also, the story gets more complex when what leads to danger and dread isn't the fact that the lead character acts like a moron.

Mrs. Pornographer read this one first and complained that the lead character doesn't seem to learn from her mistakes and keeps the wrong secrets. I am just about halfway through and I have just realized this super smart scientist is about to kill her friend by not letting anyone know that her kooky friend feels like someone is stalking her.

OK, for the record...if I think someone is stalking me? I got the cops on speed dial. I'd tell all my friends, I'd tell my *neighbors* - and I don't talk to my neighbors. (That's the wife's job.) If a friend tells me she thinks she's in danger? I'd believe her. And if for some reason, I am involved in the investigation of a creepy guy who is known to hang out where my friend does you know...I'd mention something about that to my cop friends.

Just saying.

We'll see. Maybe she gets smarter in future books. But first, I will get through this one and decide if I want to give another book a try.

Right now? I think the show is better.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Mixing Trek and murders and work

Finished the all the novelizations of Trek movies I happen to own, which would be 1-6. J. M. Dillard wrote 5 (Star Trek: The Final Frontier) & 6 (Star Trek VI The Undiscovered Country (Star Trek)), not a very enviable job, I imagine. Five was the horrible directorial outing by Bill "Anything Leonard Can Do, I Could Do Better" Shatner, and ooof, does it stink up the place. There's nothing much to save either the book or the movie, and I suppose I keep it for continuity purposes only. The story is full of pratfalls, some quite literal, and a pile of pseudo-mythic and pseudo-psychological claptrap which made Spock's Brain look clever.

OK, not that bad. But pretty bad.

I mean, really. OK, I'll but Spock had an older brother no one ever spoke about, sure. And OK, I'm along for the ride to believe he's some weird-ass mystic who can use Vulcan mind meddling techniques to help someone come to terms with past mistakes. Whatever. But somehow, reaching a catharsis is basis enough for loyalty til death?? If that was so, thousands of therapists and SM tops should be showered in grateful worship right now.

Oh, and the whole search for god thing is just silly. One of the reasons I liked Star Trek is because they were normally above the whole "let's find a magical being in charge of everything" storyline. Come on, folks, this was the crew that took down Apollo. The only thing worth watching in the movie is David Warner, who I adore, and one line, which thankfully is also in the novel. "Why does god need a spaceship?" Good question, James "I need my pain!" Kirk. Now kick your boo-hooing friends in the ass and get them to remember this is Trek, not Wars. Fire some damn torpedoes or something.

And please, please. No more singing.

The Undiscovered Country is superior mostly because the previous outing stands so tall in its suckitude. In favor? Klingon villains! Hell, in the movie, they got Captain von Trapp himself, wildly misquoting Shakespeare while zooming around in a cloaked Bird of Prey. (Everyone who saw the sing-along-Sound of Music, together now...rrrRRRRR!) Captain Sulu and his teacup! Conspiracies! Worf's grand-daddy! Kirk kissing...himself! To its detriment? A new Saavik sort of character who we never got to know. Some comedic gags and plot elements that didn't quite work because they couldn't explain things in the final cut of the movie. Too much drama added for the sake of punching up long periods of people wondering what everyone else is doing. Oh, and Kirk kissing himself, I'm into slash as much as anyone else, but the twin thing never works for me.

In between Trekking, I've been reading Twisted: A Novel, by Jonathan Kellerman. I never got it before because I wasn't that much into the lead character, Detective Petra Connor. Part of me is annoyed that she gets her own books while Milo, the gay best friend, gets to walk in and raid the fridge. But this was one of the books I got via paperbackswap, and I figured it can't be that bad. And it isn't that bad. It's easily as good as any of the Alex Delaware novels, except for that nagging feeling that it's just not fair this chick gets her own mysteries. I'll keep it.

And in between, I have added a little more to the book I am writing. Not much, but a little more.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Missed the invocation?

So, if you tuned in to the HBO coverage of the concert on the Mall yesterday, you might have thought, oh, dang, I missed the invocation by Bishop Gene Robinson! That's what I thought; I figured, oh, we were a few minutes late, dammit. I'll catch it on Youtube later.

Well, I have, but it's not from the HBO coverage. See, the invocation came before the concert and well...somehow...it wound up not being on the official broadcast.

Here it is.

HBO says it was the Obama team's decision not to include it.

Sigh.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Marketplace news

So, I am on Facebook now, easy to find, and will friend anyone who asks. Also new is the Marketplace fansite on Facebook, which you can also subscribe to! And I will do my best to keep it updated with news and links and interesting stuff. (Thank you for the genesis, Daddy!)

Ditto, in an effort to keep myself "out there," I will be making a Livejournal page which will have the exact same stuff I am putting here. I like my Blogger, but I also have many friends on LJ who might like to just read this stuff with their other LJ posts. I will be putting that up sometime this week.

Yes, I am working on The Inheritor, the 6th Marketplace book. I have done several public readings of the first chapter, and my beta readers are on chapter 5, I think. I have struggled with long term writers block, different levels of depression and some hard truth about living in NY on one regular salary. But I am committed, or maybe recommitted, to writing this book, to the promise that it will be my best book, ever, and I will finish it as soon as I can.

The economy is tough for most people right now, and that includes me and my publisher. Yes, I am selling autographed copies of my own books, and collectible first editions. But not all the books have a lot of stock in circulation right now. If you find a bookstore or other seller with copies to sell, please drop me a line and let me know, so I can help steer people to them. If you can, buy books from me. But all new books being sold will help in the long term!

Next time I will be out and about with chapter one in hand will be in Canada - my first time at Lupercalia! I hope to meet some new friends up nawth, and sincerely hope we won't be badly snowed in.

Warping through the Treks

Finished Sarek, and decided to indulge in my favorite Trek writer, Vonda McIntyre. I started with her novelizations of Wrath of Khan, Search for Spock and Voyage Home. (Yeah, I finished them all. This is not what you call very heavy reading...)

Vonda loves her Trek, and I do like her visions of the universe. Her stand alone novel, The Entropy Effect (Star Trek, No 2), is her love letter to Sulu, complete with a Mary-Sue heroine who kicks ass and a time travel storyline that twists the mind while you try to figure out who is when and why they are doing whatever it is they are doing. Vonda, by the way, is the one who gave Sulu his cool first name. Believe it or not, the studio had once suggested it was...George. Hikaru is MUCH better.

What I especially like about Vonda is that she looks into the future of relationships as well as technology. Sometimes, it misfires, especially with technology. After a page explaining how huge the memory banks are on a station, and why the people there need to delete a game that was taking up too much room, it is revealed the game is...50 megs.

Heh.

But what is nice is glimpses of things we don't have now - like legal poly relationships, including one to which Kirk is invited. Acknowledgment of gay and lesbian existence. A relationship between a woman and a much, much younger man; no eyebrows raised. People discussing the 24th century version of safer sex! (Happy sigh.) It's a pity not all writers of the future can expand their forward thinking in the same way; when you can imagine faster-than-light speed but can't see anything other than heterosexual monogamy between similar people, you are missing out on some of the most fascinating speculative stories.

Anyway, her Trek books are my favorites. Other writers who use part of what she helped sculpt and who write with the same sensitivity are the ones I like to return to again and again.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Vulcans can be amusing

Now that I've come out about my strange fetish for Bill Shatner I can also admit Spock never did it for me as a romantic figure. He was too obvious! "Oh, look at me, outcast and alone, smarter than anyone, tall and brooding, strong and sensitive. Did I mention tall?" I was one of the chicks who went for his daddy, Sarek.

Coincidentally, the book I am reading now is Sarek (Star Trek).

Anyhoo, way back in the dark ages before Teh Interwebs, people who had strange fetishes which were not readily found by using a search engine often had to either meet in person (if they were lucky enough to be able to get to a convention) or they had to rely on - brace yourself here, this will sound really odd...the US Mail.

See, the we would do something sort of like writing a post on a blog, only then we would then print it out and mail it to people. And then, someone got the idea to take a lot of these posts, sometimes known as "stories" or "articles" and put them in a stack and staple them together and make a "fanzine" which was sort of a website, only in print. Pretty weird, huh?

So, all snark aside, one of my favorite bunches of stories and 'zines involved the romantic adventures of Sarek and Amanda, the infamous Night of the Twin Moons series being the most memorable. They were written by the now well known author Jean Lorrah.

Star Trek erotica, of course, is very famous. When people talk about sexually oriented fan fiction, the sheer wealth of Trekporn is overwhelming. The classic slash fiction, after all, is Kirk/Spock. (My favorite K/S story boils down to this: K&S are marooned on the stereotypical desert planet. Kirk says to Spock, "Did I ever tell you about the human mating ritual?" Ba-dum-DUM!)

So, I am hunting through my Trek books for one to read and what do I find - NOT my Sarek/Amanda 'zines, NOT Spock Enslaved and NOT any slash. I found ... Kirk porn.

Burst out laughing. Centerfold and everything!! And wow, the writing is cheesy, when it's not just...awful. I can absolutely buy Uhura offering solace to the heartbroken Kirk after that whole "lost my wife and baby" Mirimanni thing. But racing him to the sonic shower while saying "Last one in's a n-word baby!"...I'm not buying it.

Oy. This is the one that survived my previous geek purge? Probably because I couldn't find anyone to take it. I know somewhere I still have a sort of SM themed one, where a Mary Sue from modern, Star Trek watching earth becomes Mirror Mirror Spock's love slave. There wasn't nearly enough bondage and beating as I recall.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Starting to feel safer about books to be read

So now that the books I sent out via Paperback Swap are arriving and I am getting new ones in the nail, *and* I am flirting with my Star Trek library, I feel less panicked about not having anything to read. I'll finish Vulcan's Soul today, and either go on to another Trek book or pick up the new double-dose-of-Kellerman book (Capital Crimes)I didn't think was worth buying at cover price.

Not safe for work; but VERY safe sex

Actually, at my old day job, we'd have people gathering from other departments to watch this. And really, balloon animals getting it on shouldn't be that dirty, right? But it is hysterical. An awesome condom ad.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Star Trekin' across the shelves...

OK, finished Vulcan's Heart. I liked Vulcan's Forge better, because of David The Jewish Starfleet Officer. But I liked Heart just fine, plenty of Romulans and Spock and Saavik gettin' their freak on. Moving on to Vulcan's Soul, book 1, Exodus. It's shorter than the others, dammit. I hate when authors suddenly forget to write long books.

Got a spare laptop?

One of the house's laptops fizzled out today. Not the Mac, but the Windows machine that Mrs. Pornographer uses. We will be looking for a replacement, so if you or anyone you know has a working laptop for sale, trade or charity purposes, I'm interested in hearing about it. Autographed books, geeky ephemera and old porn can be yours...

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Geeks and fetish, a natural pairing

I mean, really. Who here is shocked...SHOCKED!...to find out that comic book artists probably made more money by drawing kinky pictures? Anyone?

OK, but are you shocked that a Superman artist did? Of course not! They always hide behind that overgrown Boy Scout.

And by the way, for the slow of thought, the link might not be safe at work, although I personally found the pictures tame. Think Betty Page, not Hustler.

Monday, January 12, 2009

How does the publishing industry work?

Exactly like this.

Oh, and I am reading this now

Vulcan's Heart (Star Trek)

I like Vulcan's Forge, yesterday's book, for a number of reasons. First of all, the writing team is one I appreciate; I like their style with story telling and dialog. I also like stories about Vulcans and Romulans, and this book had 'em. Plus, an engaging Jewish starfleet officer. Star Trek and Jews, together at last, right? All they needed was a gay couple and I'd be in heaven. Oh, well. At least this book puts Uhura in the command chair (and she fits just fine) and let's McCoy go on and on about famous racehorses. McCoy monologues, when well written, are always fun.

And remember, these are re-reads. I am preparing myself to read the book I got via Paperback Swap, Vulcan's Soul Trilogy Book One: Exodus (v. 1)

It is somewhat annoying to me that I see it is part one of a series and I don't have the others yet. Ah, well.

Staying clear of Teh Gay Agenda

I've often said/written different versions of this, but I like the style. Don't want to support the gays by supporting companies that (no pun intended) suck up to them? Here's a nice list of places you can't go and spend money.

Peter LaBarbera, founder of Americans for Truth About Homosexuality, says the good Christian folk of this country must stand up to these evil corporations who have "sold its soul to the homosexual lobby":

"What we are surprised at is that more people aren't engaging these corporations, because to get a top ranking at HRC you have to essentially say that you only support the gay side," he points out. "If you do anything that constitutes being even close to supporting the pro-family side -- for example, helping a pro-marriage effort or a campaign to stop gay 'marriage' -- you cannot get a perfect rating according to HRC."

LaBarbera says many conservative Christians are weary because they have been losing the fight against homosexual activism. But it is time, he urges, for those individuals to engage within the corporate world. He says if this fight is lost then "our freedom to engage for truth in America" will be lost as well.

And it might surprise people to find out that, for once, I agree with LaBarbera. I think the anti-gay crowd should do what it is trying to do to McDonald's and Ford and boycott every company that scores high on the HRC's index. And to help them out, I've prepared a list of some of the companies they now have to avoid.

You can't fly on American Airlines, Continental or US Airways, both of which scored a perfect 100. You might also want to avoid United, Southwest, Delta, Northwest, and JetBlue; all scored above 80. In fact, Sarah Palin is gonna have a difficult time flying anywhere since Alaska Airlines also got a perfect score. Who can you fly? Well, you could try Nepal Airlines, the faith-based airline that sacrifices goats to appease God. On second thought, that won't work either. Nepal Airlines has two planes, both of them made by Boeing; Boeing got a perfect 100 too. Go Greyhound!

In fact, you might want to start boycotting the military too. Most of the major defense contractors scored very well. Honeywell, Raytheon and Northrop Grumman all scored a perfect 100. Lockheed got an 85. Who would have guessed that our good ol' red-blooded and (presumably) straight American fighting men are using weapons that advance the gay agenda? If they don't ask, we won't tell. Actually, you're gonna have to stop watching religious channels like TBN as well, since they are broadcast on satellites made by gay-loving companies.

Shopping could be a problem too. You can't shop at Abercrombie and Fitch, The Gap, JC Penney's, Macy's, or Nordstroms. Can't wear Levis jeans or Nike shoes. And even that staple of middle American fashion, LL Bean, scored a 79. Ah well, there's always K-Mart. And in a pinch, you can always wear a plain white sheet.


There's a LOT more. I do with these Xtians would take their boycotts seriously.

Wars vs. Trek; a very geeky post

So, as I finished Vulcan's Forge (Star Trek) yesterday and am looking at Vulcan's Heart (Star Trek) today, it comes to me that I do have some pretty specific thoughts on what style of trekker I am and the kind of pleasure I get from the most media related items on my bookshelves.

I mean, Star Trek novels, we're not talking very high-brow literature here. It's not even high-brow science fiction, belonging more to the space-opera genre than hard SF. (Although I sometimes appreciate the efforts of some of the authors to actually insert real science into the stories, or come up with plausible reasons for the established technology to work. Not all the time; three pages of astronomy becomes time to practice speed reading.)

First of all, some of my friends believe I am more of a Star Wars freak. This is not true. Yes, I did see the first one many, many times, and I did stand on line to see the next two on opening day, blah-blah. I did collect some cool stuff. (Hey, kid, want to buy some...lobby cards?) But compared to Trek, Star Wars was an infatuation. Man, it was pretty, and fun. But kinda, well...dim.

See, Star Wars was the trick I met at the leather conference and played with, on and off every couple of years until I realized I was going through the motions. And although I am always happy to see this trick again, afterward, I wonder what I ever saw that made me interested. Play is out of the question now.

Whereas Star Trek - the original series, mind you, Kirk, McCoy, Spock, et. al. - that's the buddy I can go without seeing for ten years and then get back together and have a blast, staying up all night laughing, telling stories, drinking, eating good food, calling up old friends. I could go on vacation with Star Trek. If I went on vacation with Star Wars, I'd pitch that SOB overboard on the second day, screaming, "stop whining already!"

I realized my love for Trek when I was watching Star Trek - Generations. See, I had liked Next Generation just fine, it was OK. Most of it. All right, the seasons when the writers were on strike pretty much sucked. And I never liked Riker. Or whats-her-name, the psychic who was SO freaking useful. (That ship firing on us! Counselor Miniskirt, what do you sense? "I sense...hostility, Captain.") Tasha Yar was the hottest butch on TV, (with the greatest back story - hiding from rape gangs? rescued by the Federation and therefore gung-ho and snarling in their defense? Kewl!) and they had her killed off by a patch of tar. Data was Spock-lite, saved by the actor, really. Wesley + airlock should have happened in season one. I liked...Picard. And Worf. And I liked the Doctor they pitched down an elevator shaft. But damn little else. No wonder I liked the Q episodes. He made them crazy. I liked it when they were crazy.

So, there I was watching Generations and I realized something frightening.

I was only interested - excited even - when watching the scenes with Bill Shatner.

Oh. My. God.

What was WRONG with me? There's Shakespearean actor Patrick Stewart - whom I love - and I am drifting off when I see him without Kirk in the same frame. I began to question my sanity, and certainly my taste.

Later in, I realized what it was. Kirk/Shatner was action, romance, movement. Even when pontificating, Kirk was a powerful presence. The lead bullet style of delivery, so wonderful to mock, is cheesy, sure. And when we look at his makeup splattered torso from the original show, we giggle because, man, Abercrombie and Fitch is what a hot torso looks like today. The hair, the waist cincher, the aging of the actor and character is funny in a way, but also recognizable. But Kirk around means something is going to happen. And it'll be...fun.

Which reminds me, I need to get around to watching that lawyer show he was on. Anyone got the DVDs I can borrow?

So, anyway, I might be embarking on a Star Trek readathon. I'll make another tag so you can skip them if you like.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The more things change...

How about a song from 1927 about...how hard it is to tell the boys and girls apart!

Masculine Women, Feminine Men

Hey! Hey! Women are going mad, today!
Hey! Hey! Fellers are just as bad, I’ll say!
Go anywhere, just stand and stare,
You’ll say they’re bugs when you look at the clothes they wear.

Masculine Women, Feminine Men,
which is the rooster which is the hen?
It’s hard to tell ‘em apart today.
And SAY…
Sister is busy learning to shave,
Brother just loves his permanent wave,
It’s hard to tell ‘em apart today.
HEY! HEY!
Girls were girls and boys were boys when I was a tot,
Now we don’t know who is who or even what’s what.
Knickers and trousers, baggy and wide,
Nobody knows who’s walking inside.
Those Masculine Women, Feminine Men


Full lyrics on the link. Heard it on The Big Broadcast tonight. Man, wouldn't that be a great song for a mixed chorus at a queer event?

Moving right along...

Finished Spock's World, am deciding which book to go with next.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Just when I thought I was out...

...they pulled me back in. Yes, it might be time for Star Trek. I finished Obsession last night. The new book that arrived via Paperback Swap is Vulcan's Soul Trilogy Book One: Exodus (Star Trek) (v. 1). Scanning it, I see the reviewers say "If you liked Spock's World (Star Trek), you'll love this.

Well, obviously, that means I need to re-read Spock's World, now, doesn't it? Plus, this new book is by a pair of authors I like, so I needed to pull their books from within the stash of Trekker porn - er, my novels - and re-read them, too.

Why no, I'm not the slightest bit compulsive.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Enjoying Obsession

Mad, you were right, Obsession (Alex Delaware, No. 21)is one of Kellerman's better ones. I am enjoying it very much. After so many books featuring psychopaths and sociopaths, people with OCD seem so easy to understand.

Today I got another book from Paperback Swap. Yes! It's working! And as long as I don't post too many books at the same time, I can keep up with sending them out, budgetwise. If anyone joins, please consider listing me as a reference. Books are life.

I want book reviews like this one

Whenever someone says that reading one of my books changed their life, I am skeptical, to say the least. My books aren't that deep, knamean? But having read this review, now I understand just how I could have been helpful.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Speaking of buying my books...

You can get a good deal on the whole set at Fetishauctioneer.com

Seriously, that is an awesome deal. All the MP books for $65.

On to Obsession; book business

Finished Thraxas last night, am moving on to Obsession.

Due to the rotten economy and how small publishers struggle even in good economies, several MP books are out of stock, with me and with Mystic Rose. If you are looking for them at prices close to cover, you'd better buy them now, wherever you find them. We do, however, have plenty copies of The Slave, The Trainer and The Catalyst.

I also still have numbered copies of all the books *except* The Academy. There might be a copy of The Academy hiding in a mixed case somewhere, you never know, but as far as my record keeping goes, I sold the last numbered one last week.

The numbered books are all taken from my first case of books, first printing, first copies I grab in my hands. I hand number them in gold colored ink. If I have them, they cost fifty smackers. When they are gone, they're gone.

I am giving serious thought to culling my vast porn collection. It's not that I don't like having a room full of it, it's that 1) they take up a lot of room, 2) I really don't re-read most of it, and 3) I need the money more than I need copies of old porn.

So, when/if I do, I will put notice here, on the MP Mailing list, Fetlife, my Facebook page and my website. Right now I am looking into how and where I would host the sale.

Decisions, decisions

Should I pay two months of my co-op maintenance, or...buy a house with that money?

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Yay! The swap works!

So the books I sent out through Paperback Swap are starting to arrive, which means the people are reporting that I am a good person and therefore I should get more books. Today my first requested book arrived - my missing Alex Delaware book, Obsession. I have three more books requested and am so far pleased with the system. I especially like the little labels they make.

Does this mean I am going to stop whining that I have no new books? Hell no! Have you seen how fast I read them?? But hopefully, I will whine less.

I am interested in referrals from other readers, so I thought maybe I'd let you know what my tastes are.

I like sagas. Big, broad books and series that make you feel like if only you had this book in your hands, you too could be a world traveler, or time traveler. But within that, I tend to enjoy a level of complexity - the mysteries of Jeffrey Archer, (Kane and Abel) for example, vs. the melodrama of Sydney Sheldon. I like strong central characters over length works which pass you on to other generations - Pilot-Major John Blackthorn in Shogun vs. the two Roman families in Steven Saylar's Roma: The Novel of Ancient Rome (Novels of Ancient Rome). (Although I love Steven to death and read that one as fast as I read his Gordianous books. His gay male porn, by the way, is stunningly good.

When I do go for the sweeping, multi-generational tale, I would rather one that fills in a lot of details about a style of living, rather than a place just by itself. Edward Rutherford's Sarum: The Novel of England was great, but by the end of the book, I lost track of who was related to whom. And I no longer really cared. On the other hand, Ken Follett's The Pillars of the Earth (Deluxe Edition) (Oprah's Book Club) gave me a story of architecture which I never would have found interesting if not for the central characters.

I like strong lead characters who I can empathize with, even when they are stupid (like Nicole, in Household Gods) or when they are so smart and clever, you wonder how everyone else in the world around them didn't just up and die one day while taking a walk. (Ayla, of course. What didn't she invent?)

I'll probably go on about this topic in future posts.

Monday, January 05, 2009

A little fantasy...

From my pile of "Re-read this before I sell it or trade it" came Death and Thraxas, a book I picked up at a Gaylaxicon. Not quite sure what the gay connection is, but the story is cute, a sort of mashing of noir detective stories and high fantasy. I liked the main character so much I named one of my WOW characters after him.

I can't find my copy of Dark Knight. I bet I loaned it to someone. Last night for a break between Lamb and Thraxas, I read a few dozen pages of the first Cerebus phonebook. Man, his art was sucky at the beginning. It got better; and so did the stories.

I am guessing that since my mood is for light reading and comic books right now, my occasional orgy of Star Trek novels will come soon.

Mexican Pepsi is REAL Pepsi

So, Pepsi is actually suing a distributor for distributing one of their products. The catch? It's Mexican Pepsi, *imported* to the US for those who know that Soda made with cane sugar is vastly superior to the stuff made with HFCS.

In this house, I tend to buy several cases of Passover Coke when that time of year rolls around. It, too, is made with cane sugar, and Mrs. Pornographer swears she can tell the difference. This year, we made it through November with the stock I bought in April.

Now, Pepsi is saying that the cane sugar product might degrade in the shipping to the US, which is...fairly ridiculous. Do they mean to suggest that Mexicans are getting an inferior product? That shipping to the US is somehow more damaging that shipping throughout Mexico?

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Another graphic novel

In between chapters of Lamb, I also reread Martha Washington Goes to War. Tis is one volume of the Give me Liberty series by Frank Miller and Dave Gibbons. Frank, of course, is best known for Batman: The Dark Knight Returns which I had no idea was worth as much as Amazon says it is. I need to see how many copies I have.

And Dave Gibbons is best known for Watchmen, which he did with genius Alan Moore.

Frankly, I find Alan much more, hmmm, how shall I put it...sane...than Frank Miller. Frank has some views about human nature and society which rely far too heavily on Ayn Rand for my taste. Plus, I'm sorry, but 300 WAS more than a tad homophobic while at the same time heavily homoerotic. (Gee, wonder what that says...?) At the same time, the man wrote some cracking adventure stories. Does that excuse the gay Nazi enemies Martha Washington has to literally impale on her service saber, or the freakishly drawn gay? pre-op tranny? WTF? who appears with a swastika tattooed on his hugely muscled pec in Dark Knight? Or that the Joke himself is portrayed as having an interest in makeup for its gender transformation rather than the whole clown image? I mean, dammit. He calls Batman "darling."

Eh; I console myself that no one comes out looking very good in Miller's worlds, unless they are borderline lone heroes with slight psychopathic and obsessive tendencies and a frustrated inability to form lasting relationships. (I mean, really, how many Robins HAVE there been?) Liberals, feminists, peaceniks, hippies, slackers, stoners, politicians and anyone engaged in the status quo are all seen as a collaborative mass of oozing acid slowly eroding the penis - er, the strength of um...

Well, everything. Civilization is at risk because stupid, under educated yet over paid workers don't know how to do their jobs. Pot smoking parents forget they have kids. Gays are...um...Nazis. Protesters are deluded, shrinks are useless, the media is opium and everyone is either a part of the corruption or a victim of it. Only one lone individual has any power against the ...erosion? - and they are doomed to suffer at the hands of vile people both within and without the structure of society who will try to kill them along the way.


And I read it for fun. But wow, if I believed in that, I'd need a lot more Celexa to get up in the morning, tell you whut.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Still re-reading

I am daunted by the pile of serious Jew-lit and gay-lit I found I hadn't read. It all sounds so gloomy and good-for-you; packed full of nutritional value but without any of the sheer joy that junk reading delivers. As a friend of mine once said as she sampled the gluten-free cake at a reading, "Needs more glutens."

So instead, it's back to little palate cleansers of Sandman graphic novels punctuated by light reading. Last night I read The Sandman Vol. 7: Brief Lives.

When I finished that, I decided it was time to reread Lamb Special Gift Ed: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal
by Christopher Moore. Oh, is this shit funny. SO irreverent and silly. But it does answer the deep, philosophical question, "What if Jesus knew Kung-Fu?" - which I must have asked myself a thousand times. Hasn't everyone?

Sadly, his other books didn't amuse me as much, although he certainly has a talent for titles. I mean, how can you beat The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove?