nora at inkstain

May 21st, 2008

wishing for Harajuku Fun Madness

For anyone interested in a “rabbit hole” of a possible new alternate reality game that JC Hutchins found, check this out. I know some of you are clever/obsessive enough to be interested in this kind of a game, but I don’t have any ideas of where to go with the information given so far.

May 19th, 2008


Posted by nora in Uncategorized

This is a really cool YouTube video of a woman introducing herself in 21 different accents:

I think mine is closest to the Seattle accent, which is funny since I was raised by Californians. We don’t do the up thing? where your statements? sound like questions? though.

(hat tip: BoingBoing)

May 18th, 2008

story excerpt

Posted by nora in fiction

I’m working on a short origin story of one of my novel characters. I wrote about 2.5k on it today. Here’s a short excerpt:

The lights of the forbidden city stretched before me. Growing up I always thought they were beautiful, like the obsidian teardrops I would find walking outside the compound, and later like the quartz I learned to imprison light in. I wondered if that was how the made all of those sparkles, if they were just hovering above the city. They used the powerful magic, that was what I had been told. The hell magics.

Hell was probably beautiful, too, from a distance.

May 16th, 2008

on not knowing

Cory Doctorow started out a recent BoingBoing post with ” If you know me, you know I…” and I had this weird feeling.

“I know that,” I thought to myself. “But I don’t know you.”

Internet fame breeds a really interesting sort of faux-intimacy with all of these celebrities. I follow a bunch of people I’ve never met (and likely never will) on Twitter. I get to see JC Hutchins go through fits of creative genius (he’s doing one now with this John Alpha for President idea). I hear when Annalee Newitz’s computer starts making horrible fan noises.

I don’t know exactly where I’m going with this, it’s just a weird observation– I keep catching myself almost repeating things I heard on I Should Be Writing with a “A friend told me that…” because that really tends to be the tone of new media.

I’m not sure if it’s a sort of pathetic “imaginary friend” thing or if it’s a really, really good way to do publicity. I guess time will tell.

May 15th, 2008

Zombie Flash: Phlegm

Posted by nora in fiction, flash, science fiction, zombies

You know, there’s a thing about crying in the movies. They’ve got it in both the single tear thing and the hysterics where people cry and are comforted and things sorta work themselves out. I kinda hate ‘them for that, that they’ve got this sort of romantic view that leaves a lot out.

I’m on the floor now, a shivering, shuddering mess. I feel like I’m going to throw up from how much phlegm I’ve swallowed by now, I can feel cold snot dripping onto my upper lip, my hands are shaking to hard to even grab the shotgun.

And when I’m rescued it’s not by a hand on the shoulder, calming me and handing me a handkerchief, getting me ready to shoot the heads off the zombies before we run out into the brave new world of outside. It’s a guy who I think I’d avoid if I saw him on the street, running at them with a baseball bat, opening the front door, grabbing me by the arm and dragging me until I get my legs enough under me to run after him.

May 10th, 2008

stuff I wrote elsewhere

Posted by nora in internet drama, personal, politics

In case any of you don’t read the Duke City Fix, I did a post there yesterday on a bad run-in with the cops. And if you aren’t reading the DCF and you’re in ‘Burque, you’re missing out.

May 7th, 2008

Zombie Story II: Hello Kitty

Posted by nora in art, fiction, flash, science fiction, zombies

My friend Corie and I are challenging each other to do a piece of flash fiction once a week. For some reason I’ve been totally zombie-obsessed lately, so you’re probably gonna be getting zombie ones for a while. Here’s this week’s…

“Okay, so you’re prepared for disasters, you’ve got the bag with everything you need in it. I get that much.” This was last week, sitting in my living room. The television is on in the background, flashing images in the dark on the both of our faces, muted. Your head is in my lap, looking up at me, half amused, one finger tucked between your neck and your Hello Kitty choker. “What I don’t get is why you have the poison.”

“You have to be prepared,” I said. “You never know what you’re gonna need.”

“It just seems dangerous is all. I think you should take it out of the bag.”

I ignored your advice and now I am backed against a wall, gun out of bullets, masses of zombies pressing closer to me.

I bat at one with the end of the shotgun, watching its head explode in a mass, and I notice a familiar figure at the back of the crowd. I’m amazed that even as a member of the shambling undead you still have that stupid choker on. Hello Kitty grins maniacally at me.

My eyes go wide. I have a two choices here. Hit another one, and another one, and finally get to you and hit your head open, sending your rotting brains in a splatter on the pavement. Or I become one of them. One of you.

Mentally, I fill in the bubble marked “none of the above” and uncork the bottle.

May 3rd, 2008

Eastern Standard Wampeter

So I’m thinking more on the Cat’s Cradle/Eastern Standard Tribe methods of grouping people and on my combination of them both. Here’s what I’m thinking now.

In Cat’s Cradle, the karass, or god-chosen group of people, always revolves around two objects, known as “wampeters”, one of which is waxing in importance and one of which is waning. Here’s what I’m thinking of the Tribes right now:

  • They are internet-based counter-cultures. Their members are alienated from mainstream American society.
  • One can be a member of more than one Tribe and there are some with significant overlap. The podcast fiction Tribe has a lot of overlap with the BoingBoing-style blogging Tribe.
  • Each Tribe has a waning “wampeter” that is the center of cultural understanding in that particular Tribe.
  • Each Tribe has at least one waxing wampeter that is to become the new wampeter after the old one become passe.

I’m postulating that the wampeter of my Tribe, which is the BoingBoing-style blogging Tribe, is currently xkcd. I know I’ve waxed poetic about this comic before, but it’s quickly becoming the new hub around which this particular brand of internet culture revolves. Munroe manages to capture perfectly how the members of my Tribe think and we revolve around him for that reason.

I’m pretty sure our last wampeter was Questionable Content, which is still an important part of that culture but one which is not as central to it as it used to be. I think that the wampeter of the fiction podcast tribe is Scott Sigler, but since I’m not really a part of that I could be wrong. One could probably make a good argument for Escape Pod being the wampeter there too.