WHEN FACING CATASTROPHE
DON’T ASK, “WHY?”
INSTEAD ASK YOURSELF:
WHAT SHALL I DO NEXT?
IN ANSWERING THAT
YOU’LL ALSO ANSWER THE “WHY”
[Note: For full effect, imagine the above proclaimed by Robin Williams at his most boisterous. Thank you.]
To answer those of you who observed that 2012 has been absent from these [pages], we offer the following explanation: Many things actually did happen during 2012, including the move of MARS Creative Projects’s home offices across the Mississippi River, that firm’s expansion into audiobooks, its entry for the Escape Pod SF podcast, and its collaboration with the MZB Backlist Project. (Information on the second and fourth items is forthcoming.) With such important activities in progress, we clearly dared not risk falling prey to the Mayan cataclysm (or was it merely a timing-out?) predicted for 21 December 2012. We therefore accepted the offer of the Temporal Services Administration (TSA) to shunt the firm directly from the end of November 2012 to January 2013, for the (to us) quite reasonable fee of January–November 2012.
All is well, and we are completing our systems reconfiguration. To those of you who missed us, welcome back, and we hope to provide you with further information soon. And to those of you who also took advantage of the TSA shunt service, Merry Christmas!
By which I mean Lisa Waters’ and my story “Truth in the Inward Parts” in Marion Zimmer Bradley’s Sword and Sorceress XXVI, just released by Norilana Books and available in print and for Kindle. It’s the latest story in our “Treasures” series, and from Tuesday 27 Dec through Thursday 29 Dec you can get the Kindle edition of the story itself for free.
The “Treasures” stories take place in a fictional England-analogue, mostly at the College of Wizardry at the University of Albion. This story takes place in town, however–specifically, at the dentist’s office. The dentist has been murdered, and the Guardian of a Treasure has found his body–but they’re in a locked room of which no one knows the location. The Treasure–a magical artifact that can open any lock–doesn’t work on this one. And the Guardian is running out of air.
So celebrate the last night of Hanukkah and days 3-5 of Christmas with us. After all, U.S. Customs and the TSA might delay the French hens, your neighbors might not appreciate Calling Birds (angry or not), and at more than $1,600.00 per ounce who can afford five gold rings? Enjoy our free e-book instead–and check out others in the “Treasures” series!
Since the time of Rimon Farris, atrocities have been committed upon us to keep us from attaining our goals. To the roll of martyrs, the name of Feleho, who of his own free will became Ambrov to Zeor, is added. Let not his death break our spirit. Let us lift his burden and carry it on so that his death will be imperceptible to his enemies.
— from Zeor’s funeral litany
Jacqueline Lichtenberg, House of Zeor
These words shed an instructive light on our rememberence of events ten years past. Many times have I heard someone say, “If we do such-and-such, the terrorists win.” What I have not heard acknowledged, however, is that in fact the terrorists did succeed. They destablized our government operations and our own everyday lives. They created an undercurrent of distrust. They transformed air travel, which hitherto had been merely uncomfortable and annoying, into a fiesta of frustration, paranoia, and occasionally outright foolishness. In short, they infected us with terror.
A far better response would deny them their success. They want us terrified? Let us not fear. They want us destablized? Let us affirm our confidence. Let us respond with sadness, with grief, with determination — but not with fear of the unknown future.
Consider rewriting the Zeor litany thus, with special attention to the last two sentences:
Since the time of the Founding Fathers, atrocities have been committed upon us to keep us from attaining our goals. To the roll of martyrs, let the names be appended of those who perished in the Twin Towers, in the Pentagon, and on board United Airlines flight 93. Let their deaths not break our spirit. Let us lift their burdens and carry them on so that their deaths will be imperceptible to our enemies.
That is the way to win.
If religion were true, its followers would not try to bludgeon their young into an artificial conformity; but would merely insist on their unbending quest for truth, irrespective of artificial backgrounds or practical consequences. With such an honest and inflexible openness to evidence, they could not fail to receive any real truth which might be manifesting itself around them. The fact that religionists do not follow this honourable course, but cheat at their game by invoking juvenile quasi-hypnosis, is enough to destroy their pretensions in my eyes even if their absurdity were not manifest in every other direction.
— H.P. Lovecraft, in a letter to Maurice W. Moe, August 3 1931
(Thanks to Andrew M. Kuchling)
I’d agree, with one emendation: Because of our fallen nature and because we have so much to unlearn from our culture (sorry, nobody comes into this world a tabula rasa, and failure — or refusal — to receive truth is widespread; see Rom. 1:19–20), we need to learn how to search for truth and test what is found. But once the toolbox is supplied … go for it!
THIS IS NOT YOUR FATHERS’
KINGDOM OF GOD
(Yes, the apostrophe is deliberately placed.)
For years I’ve wanted to attend Balticon, a convention held Memorial Day weekend in Baltimore, Maryland, and reputed to have the best New Media track of all current conventions (thanks to the hard work of Paul A. Fischer and his cronies). This year it’s scheduled for 28–31 May 2010, at Marriott’s Hunt Valley Inn, and I’ve been given the honor of appearing on the program. Continue reading
STOP TRYING TO BE
A KID AGAIN
WHEN LIFE HURTS
TRUMPS KNOWING WHY
Awhile back I identified Tee Morris as a “servant-leader” in the world of podcasting and new media. One quality of a servant-leader is that he or she earns our respect and obedience by setting an example of dedication — not only to the cause, but also to the welfare of the followers themselves. Tee Morris — teacher, author, storyteller, podcaster extraordinaire — has earned his status through unstinting and enthusiastic dedication to helping others find their way through the obstacle courses of podcasting, new media, and marketing, as well as providing marvelous entertainment through the Morevi historical fantasy novels and the Billibub Baddings mysteries (available in print and audio).
Now we, the led, have the opportunity to support this man who has supported us.
Posted in General, Podcasting, SFF: People
Tagged leader, Natalie Morris, P.G. Holyfield, Philippa Ballantine, Podcasting, Rich Sigfrit, servant, Sonic Boom, Tee Morris