OK, so this opener isn’t strictly a photo, but it’s my blog, and I can break the rules any time I want to …
Cyberpunk Lit 101
That’s my alter-ego, Isambard Portsmouth (the scruffy bugger in the, er, cowboy hat), sitting in on a literature discussion class taking place in Second Life. The work being discussed was Neal Stephenson’s seminal Snow Crash … so we were stood in the metaverse talking about the text in which the concept of the metaverse was arguably first laid out. That appeals to my warped taste in philosophy; your mileage may vary.
It was an interesting discussion for one major reason; the kids on the course were US college age, so 18 or thereabouts. Which means that Snow Crash, or at least the bits that deal with technological change, doesn’t really shock them at all. The metaverse is just there, y’know? What’s the big fuss about?
Still, there was some interesting chat about burbclaves being a new way of couching sf’s traditional obsession with the (encounter with) / (fear of) the “other”, or the “alien”. And it’s interesting to see SL being used as a teaching platform, which I’m reliably informed is a real growth industry at the moment. More research required, methinks.
Self-mutilation for fun and fashion
The following is a special request from a reader who shall remain nameless. On finding out that I was booked in for a body piercing this week, they said “oh, well I hope you’re going to blog the evidence.” I wasn’t intending to, but for the cause of contemporary subcultural anthropology, how could I refuse?
However, because some folk read VCTB in their workplace, and some may simply be squeamish or uninterested, I will supply a link to follow rather than posting the pictures directly here.
Warning: the following link is possibly NSFW, and definitely not for trypanophobics – nor people who dislike the sight of the un-muscled torsos of 30-something blokes having pieces of metal stuck in them.
With the warning delivered, I can now present – a Flickr set of Paul Raven getting his nipple pierced.
We now return you to our regular programme.
Writing stuff: Alan Wilder interview, flash virginity lost
It’s been a slow week for writing jobs; nothing new to report. But I will point interested parties to the published version of my interview with Recoil’s Alan Wilder.
While no jobs have materialised this week, I have at least been out hunting for work. Why, only yesterday I applied for a writing position … albeit one doing interviews and similar for a, uh, “gentleman’s magazine” based in Second Life, but hey – if they’ll pay me, what the hell. It’s all portfolio.
And while not writing in the freelancing for money sense, I managed to complete and post “Downtime”, my first piece of Friday Flash Fiction, as per Gareth Powell’s new blogging meme. Whether it’s any good or not, I have no idea. I’m just pleased that I managed to finish and publish something I’m not utterly ashamed of. Go me!
Books and magazines seen this week
The use of the plural is a bit brash, really, as it’s only one of each. In the magazine intray, we have:
- Issue #39 of Obsessed With Pipework poetry quarterly
And a book I’ve long been looking forward to receiving:
Tobias is a co-blogger at the recently resurrected Futurismic, but I’d have thoroughly enjoyed his first novel Crystal Rain even had I never heard of the guy before. I’m pretty confident that this sort-of-sequel is not going to disappoint. So, yet another gap to chisel into the reading schedule!
Well, thanks to a slow week (with two days out of action thanks to a cold), I find I’ve reported all but the most utterly insignificant events of my life in the past week in the material above – so, no miscellania. You must be gutted. 😉
Which means all that remains is for me to bid you all a good weekend (with better weather than the last one, hopefully) before I wander off to fetch The Friday Curry Of Justice.
So, have a good weekend! Hasta luego!