skywaterblue: (corset)
Anne McCaffrey and I had a history, though she wouldn't have been able to pick me out of a lineup. And Anne McCaffrey had a history with fandom, of which my own history is but a small part.

Anne Inez McCaffrey was the first woman in science fiction/fantasy to win the Hugo and the Nebula Awards in the same year, cementing her place in fannish and feminist history. The works she won them for would eventually be joined together as a novel, Dragonflight - the first book in the beloved Pern series. With the exception of Verity Lambert, McCaffrey is one of the few women who can claim to have created an enduring media fandom - even today there are young children who dream of impressing one of Pern's magnificent dragons and hop online to write their story, just as many young authors began with the magic blue box. For children of a certain age, Pern is a window into a better world, where they are loved. It's this power among others that make it one of SF's enduring series and fandoms.

Indeed, there was a time when Pern was almost as big a fandom as Star Trek or Doctor Who. Fanlore has dozens of Weyr zines archived and partially digitized, there are hours of filk and you couldn't type 'dragon' on Usenet without hitting a Pern discussion. People used to log in by the hundreds every night to PernMUSH in the late 80s and early 90s for a chance at impressing their very own dragon. There were tie-in books and board games and little mini figures for tabletop RPGs.

And now here we are, in 2011, after two solid decades of mismanagement of the world she created. Half a dozen companies have owned the rights to make a movie, or a TV show - the most notable failure being Ron Moore, post-DS9 and pre-Battlestar Galactica. As in so many of the great SF book franchises, a son took over the writing of the novels and ran them into the ground. The active parts of Pern fandom are tiny compared to what they once were in large part through the hounding of its fandom to give up the fanfiction and fanart and RPG. Yet the memory of Pern lingers in the media conscience, on the tips of people's tongues. "Don't Daenerys' baby dragons remind you a little of..." and "Those soul-bonded pterodactyls in Avatar were almost like..."

I've been in Pern fandom almost fifteen years, and I've seen the best and worst of it. Her legal team sent me a C&D for running a Pern RPG when I was thirteen. I'll never forget it - I came home from my Bat Mitzvah in Paris to find the email sitting in my inbox. And I was lucky, because I took down the site right away and they stopped pursuing me. People who had sold Pern art or Pern crafts at cons often weren't so lucky. I've seen fans sell out other fans to her legal team in exchange for positions of 'power' as online enforcers. I've seen people backstab each other for bits of code, or one of the all-special 'permission letters' which would allow you to run an online game. It was an era when that sort of fandom micromanagement wasn't uncommon, but she earned a deserved reputation for it. Time made her sexual politics seem creaky at best and creepy at its worst and soon the magic window to Pern wasn't a doorway but a tiny prison.

I've also seen the women who became artists because they started drawing dragons, and the ones who went on to careers in game design and software, the ones who said 'to hell with it' and made their own worlds in their own novels. Perhaps her strangest, most enduring and necessary legacy to fandom is the Organization for Transformative Works. I have no doubt that when [profile] naominovak gave the seed money to start the group, the former PernMUSH wizard thought of McCaffrey's campaigns against fandom amongst others.

In the end, all of Ramoth's golden daughters flew away and founded Weyrs of their Own. Allowing people to write Pern fanfic and play on Pern RPGs and books aimed for children hasn't brought them back. They win Hugos and Nebulas, they work for Blizzard and Ubisoft and they've all left Pern far behind them.

Rest in Peace, Anne McCaffrey.
skywaterblue: (the universe was waiting)
...from the most-astonishing adventure in Israel, Egypt and Jordan. I didn't update this journal but often sent tweets and Facebook so you can catch up there, but now that all the frustrations of travel are fading and I'm left with the memories of people I met and things I saw and did, yes. Astonishing.

I have like eighty billion photos to go through, a MUSH to start wizzing at again, and a bunch of comms with probably tired and cranky babysitters who are more than ready to dump them in my lap again.

I've been away so long that the news doesn't even make sense to me anymore. It must be like what happens to people who never watch the news and then tune in one day and are like 'what the ever-living fuck is this?' When I left this country, I was winning at Deadpool and Robert Byrd was alive and now NEITHER OF THOSE THINGS ARE TRUE.

It's a shame that Ariel Sharon didn't cack it while I was in Israel, I could have gone to a state funeral for a massive jerk and also pulled ahead again. /terrible.

Anyway. Back now. Had awesome time. Spent too much money, but my parents don't seem pissed about it in the slightest. LOL, and I worried so much over it.

ALSO I SAW DOCTOR WHO FINALE JUST NOW. AND IT WAS ASTONISHING. I can't find the words for how fucking good the Season Five ender was, I just can't, the same way I know there are people who hate this season with a fiery passion and I just really don't understand that at all.
skywaterblue: (the universe was waiting)
1. Dennis Hopper was my third deadpool score of 2010.

2. I am writing this from an airplane on my way to NYC. Wifi onna plane still feels like magic, especially when animated Richard Branson teaches you how to do it. NGL, someone should do Branson/Tony Stark.

3. Caved and bought new camera out of a Best Buy machine. Oh Canon I will never forsake you again.
skywaterblue: (The Death Star is Not a Moon)
Ronnie James Dio

Good news, because my brother and father had tied me at 1. So now I'm ahead of them again, and it's May, so there's still plenty of time to rack up more points.
skywaterblue: (mugshot gaila)
Kage Baker

Really, profoundly sad about this one. That's much too young for anyone to die, in such an awful manner. And I enjoyed her work a great deal.
skywaterblue: (dalek love)
JD Salinger.

If you didn't think my first thought wasn't FUCK YES I SCORED ON MY DEADPOOL, then well, you have clearly not known me long enough. Sorry. First of the year dance!

By the way, here is my deadpool for the year: click. I'm actually quite frustrated with the Rotten people, because they didn't add Chemical Ali in time for me to add him (okay, maybe that was on purpose, it would have been a cheap score) and it looks like they're not going to add the others I have requested. So here, in an ideal world, is what my real 2010 Deadpool would look like:

1. Ray Bradbury
2. Fidel Castro
3. Ronnie James Dio
4. Dennis Hopper
5. Anne McCaffrey
6. JD Salinger
7. Margaret Thatcher
8. Ariel Sharon
9. Kage Baker
10. Abdelbaset Al-Megrahi

The two people I added to the Rotten one to plug the holes are: Kirk Douglas and Billy Graham. At the end of the year, let's see which list did better.
skywaterblue: (dalek love)
My Brother's Pool

My Dad's Pool

I think my brother is playing for keeps this year. Meanwhile: underwhelming card from my dad, isn't it?
skywaterblue: (john lennon)
1. Thanks to the anon who got me a V-Gift. It's cute and appreciated.

2. I have picked up a cold off either my brother or my godchild. :(

3. Patrick Swayze: At first I was bummed because my dad had him on Deadpool and now we're tied, but then people started reminding me of Ghost, and Too Wong Foo... and yeah. He'll be missed.

4. Here's a picture of John Lennon and Yoko Ono I've never seen before:



Kinda cheered me up, I want those pants.
skywaterblue: (obama -- we are the ones)
Ted Kennedy.

I was having an awesome day. As true blue Democrats (except for my mother), we are all very crushed. (But no so crushed that the second thing my brother said, after a truly heartfelt sniffle and open jaw of shock was: "Dude, we all just scored on deadpool.")

My awesome day: I went to life drawing session at the CAC with Abby and her friend Tyler, who is pretty awesome and I'm glad to have met him. It was a very serious class, I did some good work despite being starving. After, her mom took us out for Blueberry Hill which was totally perfect since I had skipped dinner to make it to the session in time.
skywaterblue: (death)
I'm in the lead again in the family! Robert McNamara: the only time you ever made someone WIN.

Sadly, I didn't know for almost a day that he bit it, because traditional media sucks. But I about spazzed out last night during the Rachel Maddow segment.

Aw, no.

Mar. 15th, 2009 06:26 pm
skywaterblue: (john spencer)
Ron Silver

Let's start a round: When You See This, Quote Bruno Gianelli.

"I'm reading things that would make the cast of Up with People sit down on the floor and cry."
skywaterblue: (death)
... for my deadpool.

Andrew Wyeth.

Also, since I'm going to assume general ignorance on the part of my friend's list:
How Andrew Wyeth's 'Helga' went Viral, which is basically about an amusing fraud he committed in the 70's to sell a bunch of paintings. I wish I could say I learned about this in art school, but I think I actually learned it from obsessively reading old magazines as a child.

My dad sent me an admiring email.
skywaterblue: (corset)
Ricardo Montalban

And also Patrick McGoohan.

Both fine, fine actors. The (Original, One True) Number Six and Khaaaaaaaan!

We pour a little in the ground tonight for you, sirs.
skywaterblue: (adventuring in time and space)
Also, how about JD Salinger for the deadpool? I have at least two spots open: one for W Mark Felt's vacancy in 2009, and one for Britney Spears, who seems less likely to kill herself anytime soon.

My list from 2008.

I think it's too author-heavy.
skywaterblue: (breakfastclub)
...pick Steve Jobs for dead pool.
skywaterblue: (reagan smokes)
W. Mark Felt

OMG I FINALLY GOT ONE.

I mean. Great loss, and I'm glad someone leaked Watergate. I wish we could only get documentation of Bush's high crimes...
skywaterblue: (illogical!)
Majel Roddenberry

Damn. I guess the Star Trek film is going to be the last time that Star Trek will ever sound like Star Trek. Good night, Computer, good bye Madam Troi and Nurse Chapel.
skywaterblue: (art school perverts)
NSFW )

Bye bye, Betty. I shall take my evening tipple in your memory.

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