izmeina: (Default)
The local library have been sending the serpent nasty letters demanding the return of a certain book sooner rather than later.
I had half the thing covered in little post it note tags because of course it is bad bad manners to use highlighting markers in other people's books. Of course there would be plenty of time to take notes and lots of them as future evidence in the case for the prosecution because one little click and the book would be renewed.

But it looks like there is a queue of cheap and nasty folk out there who want to borrow Crippled America - How to Make America Great Again rather than hand over their fist full of fivers to a worthy cause since the Great and Glorious Leader is donating all the proceeds to charities


Of course there's been a veritable feast of fun in Twitterland. The Big Donald does not do irony at all and obviously believes that rules are for lesser mortals. No leading by example here

It has become quite apparent that dearest Donald accuses his opponents of precisely the behaviour that he himself indulges in and seemingly completely shamelessly. He even bandies about accusations of hypocrisy.



It his hard to know if he believes all his own publicity, if it is just tactics and unpredictability to outwit the opposition or if he is living in an alternative reality where he truly is the centre of the universe second only to God in status.

But it looks like the latest tweet storm concerning Russian hackers, leaked emails and FAKE weapons of mass distraction will not so quickly fade away. It's been the lead story on the news in Oz for the last five hours.
It's kind of sweet in a way that George W Bush has finally got a mention. At the rate Trumplethinskin is going, Old George will soon begin to look most decent and reasonable indeed. It took him a couple of years before he started making up his own facts and reality and gave us the wonderful concept of truthiness before sending his minions to invade Iraq on trumped up charges and then leaving the rest of the world to clean up the mess while sending the US half broke to pay for it all.
This lot have not even clocked in yet and they are already in cloud cuckoo land up in that gaudy golden Tower of Babble.


Mirror mirror on the wall. Who is the wackiest of them all?
izmeina: A skeleton playing a pipe (Mr Bones)
The local library have been sending the serpent nasty letters demanding the return of a certain book sooner rather than later.
I had half the thing covered in little post it note tags because of course it is bad bad manners to use highlighting markers in other people's books. Of course there would be plenty of time to take notes and lots of them as future evidence in the case for the prosecution because one little click and the book would be renewed.

But it looks like there is a queue of cheap and nasty folk out there who want to borrow Crippled America - How to Make America Great Again rather than hand over their fist full of fivers to a worthy cause since the Great and Glorious Leader is donating all the proceeds to charities


Of course there's been a veritable feast of fun in Twitterland. The Big Donald does not do irony at all and obviously believes that rules are for lesser mortals. No leading by example here

It has become quite apparent that dearest Donald accuses his opponents of precisely the behaviour that he himself indulges in and seemingly completely shamelessly. He even bandies about accusations of hypocrisy.



It his hard to know if he believes all his own publicity, if it is just tactics and unpredictability to outwit the opposition or if he is living in an alternative reality where he truly is the centre of the universe second only to God in status.

But it looks like the latest tweet storm concerning Russian hackers, leaked emails and FAKE weapons of mass distraction will not so quickly fade away. It's been the lead story on the news in Oz for the last five hours.
It's kind of sweet in a way that George W Bush has finally got a mention. At the rate Trumplethinskin is going, Old George will soon begin to look most decent and reasonable indeed. It took him a couple of years before he started making up his own facts and reality and gave us the wonderful concept of truthiness before sending his minions to invade Iraq on trumped up charges and then leaving the rest of the world to clean up the mess while sending the US half broke to pay for it all.
This lot have not even clocked in yet and they are already in cloud cuckoo land up in that gaudy golden Tower of Babble.


Mirror mirror on the wall. Who is the wackiest of them all?
izmeina: (Default)
Was supposed to have posted this serpent snippet ages ago but sort of got distracted by Nanowrimo and an assortments of tweets from #Trumplethinskin

One of the more useful and unusual books about writing that I have recently encountered is Becoming a Writer by Dorothea Brande

If you can get past the antiquated and annoying ‘he man’ language, it is actually full of useful ideas and information.
It is very different than most other books on this subject in that it does not deal at all with plots, three act structures, character arcs, dialogue and all the usual things one would expect to be covered in a book about writing. It is more concerned with the mindset that is required to write, how to develop it and the delicate juggling act required to balance the conflicting aspects of the mind.

It would be more accurately described as a book less about writing and more about Summoning the Muse.

The 3 most important ideas in this book I found are

1 Sneak past the snarky carping inner editor


By writing first thing in the morning after waking up - before turning on the radio, talking to anyone (or especially these days - checking the smart phone) it is possible to bypass the pesky inner editor and let the subconscious run riot on the page. It is also a good idea not to reread these pages lest you unleash the inner editor or give up in despair at the awfulness of your rambling purple prose.

2 Tame the Beast

The subconscious is a creative creature but childish and wilful and prone to fits of procrastination. It has to be tamed and disciplined if it is to serve you well.
She recommends this be done by writing first thing in the morning to develop the habit and then later to choose a time to write and to keep to it. No negotiations and no excuses. At the appointed hour you turn up at your desk and write. It is best to pick different times on different days to train your subconscious to be able to produce the words on demand.
If you stick to this schedule the subconscious will soon learn that its temper tantrums and trickery are of no avail and will then conform to your will.

3 Feed Your Head

The creative self needs lots of new experiences to keep it inspired and amused. Go to museums and art galleries. Be a tourist in your own town. Or else be condemned to constantly replaying significant emotional episodes from childhood when everything was truly new and magical and almost every day an adventure.

If this advice sounds suspiciously similar to that offered in Julia Cameron’s “The Way of the Artist” that is because it is. Only some 50 years older.
izmeina: (Default)
Was supposed to have posted this serpent snippet ages ago but sort of got distracted by Nanowrimo and an assortments of tweets from #Trumplethinskin

One of the more useful and unusual books about writing that I have recently encountered is Becoming a Writer by Dorothea Brande

If you can get past the antiquated and annoying ‘he man’ language, it is actually full of useful ideas and information.
It is very different than most other books on this subject in that it does not deal at all with plots, three act structures, character arcs, dialogue and all the usual things one would expect to be covered in a book about writing. It is more concerned with the mindset that is required to write, how to develop it and the delicate juggling act required to balance the conflicting aspects of the mind.

It would be more accurately described as a book less about writing and more about Summoning the Muse.

The 3 most important ideas in this book I found are

1 Sneak past the snarky carping inner editor


By writing first thing in the morning after waking up - before turning on the radio, talking to anyone (or especially these days - checking the smart phone) it is possible to bypass the pesky inner editor and let the subconscious run riot on the page. It is also a good idea not to reread these pages lest you unleash the inner editor or give up in despair at the awfulness of your rambling purple prose.

2 Tame the Beast

The subconscious is a creative creature but childish and wilful and prone to fits of procrastination. It has to be tamed and disciplined if it is to serve you well.
She recommends this be done by writing first thing in the morning to develop the habit and then later to choose a time to write and to keep to it. No negotiations and no excuses. At the appointed hour you turn up at your desk and write. It is best to pick different times on different days to train your subconscious to be able to produce the words on demand.
If you stick to this schedule the subconscious will soon learn that its temper tantrums and trickery are of no avail and will then conform to your will.

3 Feed Your Head

The creative self needs lots of new experiences to keep it inspired and amused. Go to museums and art galleries. Be a tourist in your own town. Or else be condemned to constantly replaying significant emotional episodes from childhood when everything was truly new and magical and almost every day an adventure.

If this advice sounds suspiciously similar to that offered in Julia Cameron’s “The Way of the Artist” that is because it is. Only some 50 years older.
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie has been a busy little serpent. When not slinking about the city attending assorted culture vulture events or watching the full moon rising over the river, been pottering about in Cyberia doing studious stuff or making lame attempts to catch up on ridiculous amounts of tempting books.

Present reads include "Turing's Vision - the birth of computer science (as part of an ongoing ambition to finally make sense of some of one of my favorite books of all time "Godel, Escher, Bach - an eternal golden braid" and "The Quiet Revolution" - a book about introverts which happen to be on loan from libraries or friends which of course makes them much higher priorities than the stash of interesting stuff in the Lair. A recent mud map sort of stock take led to the scary realization that there are books in every room of the Lair except the bathroom and loo.

Then there are a couple of online courses. I learned the hard way not to be too greedy with those. The inner masochist is still doing a Python language computer course which is nowhere as good as the other offerings on the same subject from Coursera. Both lecturers are boring and creepy but it's a case of 'use it or lose it' and proof positive that there's nothing like repetition and practice for learning most things.

The second course Living at the Nuclear Brink is more a nostalgic indulgence and an inspiration for dystopian apocalyptic fiction. But now the odds are decreasingly in favour of the Clown Prince ever getting those chubby little fingers on the red button in the White House, then it is more of an idle curiosity. But it is seriously scary to watch lectures where one of the regulars has a creepy beard worthy of Seneca Crane and turns out to be (as I suspected) one of those crazy scientists who has devoted his life to building those nasty nukes at the labs of Los Alamos.

On Saturday I went to a mini convention called "Create Chaos" devoted to the dark art of comics and graphic novels with lots of folks selling their wares including the very ominous soundingMysteria Maxima Media associated with a local artistic Aleister Crowley acolyte.
I got a proper peek at the first instalment of their supervillain series and The Beast has his Mark all over it ;)

Apparently the comic community have created their own version of Nanowrimo where they set out to produce a 24 page comic in 24 hours or 8 pages in 8 hours for the somewhat less ambitious. That seems infinitely more daunting than 50,000 words in a whole 30 days.

So with all this inspiration, there should be no shortage of ideas for Nanowrimo in spite of being still completely clueless and plotless concerning November's story. I still haven't even decided yet on a suitable tarot deck for inspiration. I guess the question to ask is
What would Donald choose?

This week the serpent is going to be uberorganized and will not miss a single minute of the melt down that will be the third debate. After the second one - it certainly looks like the Trump's drug of choice was Viagra.
izmeina: Roz with clipboard from Monsters Inc (Roz)
Izzie has been a busy little serpent. When not slinking about the city attending assorted culture vulture events or watching the full moon rising over the river, been pottering about in Cyberia doing studious stuff or making lame attempts to catch up on ridiculous amounts of tempting books.

Present reads include "Turing's Vision - the birth of computer science (as part of an ongoing ambition to finally make sense of some of one of my favorite books of all time "Godel, Escher, Bach - an eternal golden braid" and "The Quiet Revolution" - a book about introverts which happen to be on loan from libraries or friends which of course makes them much higher priorities than the stash of interesting stuff in the Lair. A recent mud map sort of stock take led to the scary realization that there are books in every room of the Lair except the bathroom and loo.

Then there are a couple of online courses. I learned the hard way not to be too greedy with those. The inner masochist is still doing a Python language computer course which is nowhere as good as the other offerings on the same subject from Coursera. Both lecturers are boring and creepy but it's a case of 'use it or lose it' and proof positive that there's nothing like repetition and practice for learning most things.

The second course Living at the Nuclear Brink is more a nostalgic indulgence and an inspiration for dystopian apocalyptic fiction. But now the odds are decreasingly in favour of the Clown Prince ever getting those chubby little fingers on the red button in the White House, then it is more of an idle curiosity. But it is seriously scary to watch lectures where one of the regulars has a creepy beard worthy of Seneca Crane and turns out to be (as I suspected) one of those crazy scientists who has devoted his life to building those nasty nukes at the labs of Los Alamos.

On Saturday I went to a mini convention called "Create Chaos" devoted to the dark art of comics and graphic novels with lots of folks selling their wares including the very ominous soundingMysteria Maxima Media associated with a local artistic Aleister Crowley acolyte.
I got a proper peek at the first instalment of their supervillain series and The Beast has his Mark all over it ;)

Apparently the comic community have created their own version of Nanowrimo where they set out to produce a 24 page comic in 24 hours or 8 pages in 8 hours for the somewhat less ambitious. That seems infinitely more daunting than 50,000 words in a whole 30 days.

So with all this inspiration, there should be no shortage of ideas for Nanowrimo in spite of being still completely clueless and plotless concerning November's story. I still haven't even decided yet on a suitable tarot deck for inspiration. I guess the question to ask is
What would Donald choose?

This week the serpent is going to be uberorganized and will not miss a single minute of the melt down that will be the third debate. After the second one - it certainly looks like the Trump's drug of choice was Viagra.
izmeina: (Preciousss)
One of the joys of working in a charity shop are all the tasty tempting morsels that come through the door.
About three weeks ago one of the boxes of books included two spin offs from the first Hunger Games movies with lots of pretty pictures and all sorts of background gossip about the stories and film as well as a book about the latest diet craze - the 5,2 diet. Izzie had been a very good serpent and resisted the temptation of those movie books back in 2012 but now for a couple of silver sickles each could well afford to indulge and toss in the other for good measure.

munch munch )
izmeina: (Preciousss)
One of the joys of working in a charity shop are all the tasty tempting morsels that come through the door.
About three weeks ago one of the boxes of books included two spin offs from the first Hunger Games movies with lots of pretty pictures and all sorts of background gossip about the stories and film as well as a book about the latest diet craze - the 5,2 diet. Izzie had been a very good serpent and resisted the temptation of those movie books back in 2012 but now for a couple of silver sickles each could well afford to indulge and toss in the other for good measure.

munch munch )
izmeina: (Default)
Well another month has come and almost gone. It's scary how they seem to get faster and faster.
It's also amusing to think that back in the bad old days with no laptop and certainly no Portkey in the Lair I was posting online snippets far more frequently than now. It's not like there's even an excuse for more posting and less lurking. No evil toxic toads to drain the serpent soul, no 30 hours per week devoted to a job and another 20 devoted to 3 units studying. But maybe it's simply old age. Cyberia is no longer the bright and shiny place full of tempting treats and toys that it used to be. I guess when you hit the half century it gets harder and harder to deny the inevitability of mortality and the ancient real world begins to look rather more interesting.


But in some strange ways it has been the adventures in Cyberia that added to the appreciation of the other world.
I finally seem to have under control a past addiction to online courses.
It was like being a kid in a candy store or a glutton at the buffet. Just pile the plates higher and higher and never ask if it is even possible to gobble so much stuff let alone take time to enjoy each tasty morsel. I have rationed myself to just one at a time and actually kept to it this month.
Like with most things, the first experiences are the most formative. One of the first courses I took and still one of the best was called "Introduction to mathematical thinking". As well as learning fascinating stuff like formal logic and the art of deciphering much of the arcane mathematical symbols of "Godel, Escher, Bach - an eternal golden braid" (a definite desert island book for this serpent) the other really important thing I learned was that persistence, practice and constant vigilance usually win in the long run over innate talent without such grit. That a lot of what looks like natural ability is so often simply the result of years and years of practice.

The relevance of this to reality is rather simple. I no longer expect to pick something up quickly or give up when it becomes a struggle because that surely is a sign of total unsuitability. If it is difficult then it means that the old grey cells are getting a good workout. Of course the stuff has to be interesting in the first place or else there would be no incentive to overcome the frustration of making such slow progress.

So this meant that the last four Monday evenings spent learning the dark art of book binding could be enjoyed as a learning experience and a useful chance to learn something practical rather than a never ending exercise in frustration because everything is going so slowly and my efforts are not looking as magnificent as the folks at the next table.
But it did become increasingly obvious that even with following the maxim of "Measure 5 times and cut once" was still producing some definitely dodgy edges. A millimeter or two out here or there does not sound like much but it all adds up and looks ever so wonky.

It turns out that the man teaching the course used to be a carpenter and had to give it up for IT when his eyes were no longer up to the perfection in measurements required. Ha added that if he had been doing roofs and not furniture he could have gotten away with it for a whole lot longer.

So it's no longer possible to pretend that the beady serpent eyes are perfectly fine thank you very much.

So in spite of some incredible wonkiness, it was still fun and I have already signed up for the intermediate class. Most of the enjoyment came in no small part to just going with the flow and not expecting perfection. Of course anything to do with books is always a very big plus.
Meanwhile will need to get some glasses and a whole pile of practice measuring and cutting so that it will almost be on autopilot by the time the next course comes around.

In the meantime, the weeds are thriving and there's garlic, sweet potatoes and nasturtiums growing like crazy. Been making the most of the gorgeous mild winter weather to experiment with seeds and to see what pops up.


Still searching for some grand project to ignite the long dormant serpent spark plugs. Here's hoping to find something suitable before the solstice.
izmeina: Strange Spiral Clock (Time Turner)
Well another month has come and almost gone. It's scary how they seem to get faster and faster.
It's also amusing to think that back in the bad old days with no laptop and certainly no Portkey in the Lair I was posting online snippets far more frequently than now. It's not like there's even an excuse for more posting and less lurking. No evil toxic toads to drain the serpent soul, no 30 hours per week devoted to a job and another 20 devoted to 3 units studying. But maybe it's simply old age. Cyberia is no longer the bright and shiny place full of tempting treats and toys that it used to be. I guess when you hit the half century it gets harder and harder to deny the inevitability of mortality and the ancient real world begins to look rather more interesting.


But in some strange ways it has been the adventures in Cyberia that added to the appreciation of the other world.
I finally seem to have under control a past addiction to online courses.
It was like being a kid in a candy store or a glutton at the buffet. Just pile the plates higher and higher and never ask if it is even possible to gobble so much stuff let alone take time to enjoy each tasty morsel. I have rationed myself to just one at a time and actually kept to it this month.
Like with most things, the first experiences are the most formative. One of the first courses I took and still one of the best was called "Introduction to mathematical thinking". As well as learning fascinating stuff like formal logic and the art of deciphering much of the arcane mathematical symbols of "Godel, Escher, Bach - an eternal golden braid" (a definite desert island book for this serpent) the other really important thing I learned was that persistence, practice and constant vigilance usually win in the long run over innate talent without such grit. That a lot of what looks like natural ability is so often simply the result of years and years of practice.

The relevance of this to reality is rather simple. I no longer expect to pick something up quickly or give up when it becomes a struggle because that surely is a sign of total unsuitability. If it is difficult then it means that the old grey cells are getting a good workout. Of course the stuff has to be interesting in the first place or else there would be no incentive to overcome the frustration of making such slow progress.

So this meant that the last four Monday evenings spent learning the dark art of book binding could be enjoyed as a learning experience and a useful chance to learn something practical rather than a never ending exercise in frustration because everything is going so slowly and my efforts are not looking as magnificent as the folks at the next table.
But it did become increasingly obvious that even with following the maxim of "Measure 5 times and cut once" was still producing some definitely dodgy edges. A millimeter or two out here or there does not sound like much but it all adds up and looks ever so wonky.

It turns out that the man teaching the course used to be a carpenter and had to give it up for IT when his eyes were no longer up to the perfection in measurements required. Ha added that if he had been doing roofs and not furniture he could have gotten away with it for a whole lot longer.

So it's no longer possible to pretend that the beady serpent eyes are perfectly fine thank you very much.

So in spite of some incredible wonkiness, it was still fun and I have already signed up for the intermediate class. Most of the enjoyment came in no small part to just going with the flow and not expecting perfection. Of course anything to do with books is always a very big plus.
Meanwhile will need to get some glasses and a whole pile of practice measuring and cutting so that it will almost be on autopilot by the time the next course comes around.

In the meantime, the weeds are thriving and there's garlic, sweet potatoes and nasturtiums growing like crazy. Been making the most of the gorgeous mild winter weather to experiment with seeds and to see what pops up.


Still searching for some grand project to ignite the long dormant serpent spark plugs. Here's hoping to find something suitable before the solstice.
izmeina: (Default)
Izzie's been so busy in the Muggle world that the magical domains of Cyberia have been seriously neglected. So much so that I had 3 days left on a Vodafone recharge and 8GB of a 10GB allowance unused. Once midnight of the 28 day expiry period arrives, all those juicy unused gigabytes just turn into pumpkin puree. So that was just the temptation needed to update to the latest Big Mac operating system.

Then there's online course homework. Presently only doing one course but it is so interesting that I actually want to watch all the videos rather than just game the system with the weekly quizzes.

Monday 2nd May saw a new addition to the evening agenda taking the serpent away from the world of online lurking.
Last year the vague wishful thinking that it would be nice to join the Bookbinders Guild was converted into reality and of course it would be a good idea to take advantage of this opportunity to sign up for one of their book binding courses. I had done such a course way back in 2011 but figured that it's time for a refresher. This mob are far more fun. Not just that their course is cheaper and there are only half as many participants but they also provide all the materials and tools and the course is at a serpent friendly time and location. No need to be up at 7am in rush hour traffic in order to be at the other side of the city by 9.30am.

Then there's also the announcement last Sunday of a Federal election for Saturday 2nd July. We all knew it was coming for ages but now it is official.

Last but not least is the latest goblin gossip. A giant bowl of very tasty Leak soup.

Panama Papers

More Goblin Porn

This is going to be Schadenfreude on steroids.
izmeina: Roz with clipboard from Monsters Inc (Roz)
Izzie's been so busy in the Muggle world that the magical domains of Cyberia have been seriously neglected. So much so that I had 3 days left on a Vodafone recharge and 8GB of a 10GB allowance unused. Once midnight of the 28 day expiry period arrives, all those juicy unused gigabytes just turn into pumpkin puree. So that was just the temptation needed to update to the latest Big Mac operating system.

Then there's online course homework. Presently only doing one course but it is so interesting that I actually want to watch all the videos rather than just game the system with the weekly quizzes.

Monday 2nd May saw a new addition to the evening agenda taking the serpent away from the world of online lurking.
Last year the vague wishful thinking that it would be nice to join the Bookbinders Guild was converted into reality and of course it would be a good idea to take advantage of this opportunity to sign up for one of their book binding courses. I had done such a course way back in 2011 but figured that it's time for a refresher. This mob are far more fun. Not just that their course is cheaper and there are only half as many participants but they also provide all the materials and tools and the course is at a serpent friendly time and location. No need to be up at 7am in rush hour traffic in order to be at the other side of the city by 9.30am.

Then there's also the announcement last Sunday of a Federal election for Saturday 2nd July. We all knew it was coming for ages but now it is official.

Last but not least is the latest goblin gossip. A giant bowl of very tasty Leak soup.

Panama Papers

More Goblin Porn

This is going to be Schadenfreude on steroids.
izmeina: (Default)
Today it was time to indulge in some serious nostalgia. Not just a visit to my favourite lunatic asylum but also a sneak peek at the work in progress that is Sculptures by the Sea which officially opens this Friday.

Then there was also the matter of decadent indulgence. Back in December 2014, New Edition book shop was filled with an assortment of gorgeous tomes all out in time for the Christmas craziness.

Including this one




The walls are adorned with promotional pictures from China Mieville’s “Kraken” which must be a good 5 years old by now but is the perfect theme for a book store located in the university quarter of Fremantle and less than 5 minutes walk to the Indian Ocean.
It was while flicking through this book that I had the idea - “What if New Edition were really a recruitment centre for an ancient Kraken cult?” and figured this would be fun idea for a possible plot for next November. And never mind just the book store - the whole town could be in on the scheme. The following 12 months provided an abundance of circumstantial evidence in the form of street art and assorted graffiti.

Of course the inner serpent would have none of this nonsense. There is only one true faith and that is the Church of Serpentology and NO you do not need this infernal tome or any other for research purposes. Not just because you already have several paperbacks with most of the stories and they are all online these days anyway. But this book is a ridiculous $49.99, it weighs a ton, is suitable only for a rather large coffee table and anyway you could probably get it online for half the price. But most importantly of all - you do not NEED it and you cannot justify wasting precious pennies on such decadence when the book shop is filled with endless rows of interesting and useful books.

So reason and logic prevailed. That was until the evening of a big Nanowrimo write in. There was a table full of books and mysterious envelopes as prizes. I picked the one from New Edition. It was worth 30 silver sickles with a use by date of NEVER unlike most vouchers which are valid for between 6 and 12 months.
Now this was the perfect excuse for some decadent indulgence. The summer solstice seemed the most auspicious time to snaffle the Squid. Problem was that it was not there. After all, the book was published in November 2014 and was not going to be hanging around taking up precious space on the shelves waiting for Izzie to win the lottery. There were also many other gorgeous books on the shelves worthy of serpent attention including the Thing Explainer (complicated stuff in simple words)

No harm in asking. They said they would have it back in stock in mid January and today was the first day since then that I have darkened the doors of the store. Once again I could not find it in the Sci fi and Cult fiction section so asked at the counter and one of the book sellers came back with the big black tentacled tome within the minute. It turns out that it was in the classics section along with the complete works of Edgar Allan Poe, the Annotated Alice, Annotated Brothers Grimm and an assortment of other enormous, gorgeous and very expensive books.

So I handed over the gift voucher and 20 silver sickles and took possession of the Tentacled Tome. From there I made my way to the new arts centre (and old lunatic asylum) and sat in the gorgeous courtyard browsing through the pages and all the pretty pictures until it was closing time. Then I was off to catch the bus to see the sculptures by the sea.
So inspired by the monstrous abominations on the pages, an assortment of strange sculptures on the sea shore shining and glowing in the spooky light of the setting sun, it was a gorgeous way to end the day.


Back in the real world there are soul sucking vampires, weasels, werewolves, zombie prime ministers and other evil monsters lurking and snivelling and indulging in their usual arse covering, back stabbing, cost cutting goblin ways but the dreadful recent resurrections of Tony Abbott and John Howard, the triumphs of Trump and the simpering sniveling litany of excuses spouted by Goblin George Pell are best left for another day.

They are where the true incarnations of horror and cosmic monstrosity can be found.
izmeina: a spooky blue Cthulhu brandishing wicked weapons (pen and paintbrush) (squid)
Today it was time to indulge in some serious nostalgia. Not just a visit to my favourite lunatic asylum but also a sneak peek at the work in progress that is Sculptures by the Sea which officially opens this Friday.

Then there was also the matter of decadent indulgence. Back in December 2014, New Edition book shop was filled with an assortment of gorgeous tomes all out in time for the Christmas craziness.

Including this one




The walls are adorned with promotional pictures from China Mieville’s “Kraken” which must be a good 5 years old by now but is the perfect theme for a book store located in the university quarter of Fremantle and less than 5 minutes walk to the Indian Ocean.
It was while flicking through this book that I had the idea - “What if New Edition were really a recruitment centre for an ancient Kraken cult?” and figured this would be fun idea for a possible plot for next November. And never mind just the book store - the whole town could be in on the scheme. The following 12 months provided an abundance of circumstantial evidence in the form of street art and assorted graffiti.

Of course the inner serpent would have none of this nonsense. There is only one true faith and that is the Church of Serpentology and NO you do not need this infernal tome or any other for research purposes. Not just because you already have several paperbacks with most of the stories and they are all online these days anyway. But this book is a ridiculous $49.99, it weighs a ton, is suitable only for a rather large coffee table and anyway you could probably get it online for half the price. But most importantly of all - you do not NEED it and you cannot justify wasting precious pennies on such decadence when the book shop is filled with endless rows of interesting and useful books.

So reason and logic prevailed. That was until the evening of a big Nanowrimo write in. There was a table full of books and mysterious envelopes as prizes. I picked the one from New Edition. It was worth 30 silver sickles with a use by date of NEVER unlike most vouchers which are valid for between 6 and 12 months.
Now this was the perfect excuse for some decadent indulgence. The summer solstice seemed the most auspicious time to snaffle the Squid. Problem was that it was not there. After all, the book was published in November 2014 and was not going to be hanging around taking up precious space on the shelves waiting for Izzie to win the lottery. There were also many other gorgeous books on the shelves worthy of serpent attention including the Thing Explainer (complicated stuff in simple words)

No harm in asking. They said they would have it back in stock in mid January and today was the first day since then that I have darkened the doors of the store. Once again I could not find it in the Sci fi and Cult fiction section so asked at the counter and one of the book sellers came back with the big black tentacled tome within the minute. It turns out that it was in the classics section along with the complete works of Edgar Allan Poe, the Annotated Alice, Annotated Brothers Grimm and an assortment of other enormous, gorgeous and very expensive books.

So I handed over the gift voucher and 20 silver sickles and took possession of the Tentacled Tome. From there I made my way to the new arts centre (and old lunatic asylum) and sat in the gorgeous courtyard browsing through the pages and all the pretty pictures until it was closing time. Then I was off to catch the bus to see the sculptures by the sea.
So inspired by the monstrous abominations on the pages, an assortment of strange sculptures on the sea shore shining and glowing in the spooky light of the setting sun, it was a gorgeous way to end the day.


Back in the real world there are soul sucking vampires, weasels, werewolves, zombie prime ministers and other evil monsters lurking and snivelling and indulging in their usual arse covering, back stabbing, cost cutting goblin ways but the dreadful recent resurrections of Tony Abbott and John Howard, the triumphs of Trump and the simpering sniveling litany of excuses spouted by Goblin George Pell are best left for another day.

They are where the true incarnations of horror and cosmic monstrosity can be found.
izmeina: (Default)
It looks like doing November’s novel writing adventure has totally used up the serpent stash of words for the remainder of the year. Even squiggling Christmas cards and emails has become a struggle and the subject of much procrastination. Especially annoying is that thanks to the drastic drop in the value of the Oz zloty, Christmas shopping on Amazon is no longer the handy one stop Christmas shop that it used to be.

For years and years I used to contrast and compare Amazon and Book Depository. In most cases they worked out much the same because what you would gain on price you would lose on postage fees with the odds tilting towards Amazon for orders of more than 2 items. But in those days the exchange rate was between 90 cents and parity and not the ghastly 70 something that it is now which means having to add just under 50% to the Amazon price to get the currency conversion.
It’s a pity because Amazon.com is such an easy to use site. There’s an address list that actually works and most importantly of all, they understand the concept that people sometimes send books as presents so they let you write little messages or they even wrap the books if you are feeling particularly decadent.

Book Depository on the other hand make you type out stupid addresses from scratch each time even if they are already in your address book and the concept of sending gift messages is completely alien to them even though it is rather likely that if the shipping and billing addresses are not the same, it’s probably a present.

But even with all this carping and squawking it’s is still better than the appalling alternative of having to use Australia Post for anything. I haven’t darkened the door of that awful owlery since December 2012 when one of their goblin snails ate my box of zombies. So much stuff had gotten lost or delayed for up to a year and that was the last nail in the coffin.

The recent Izzie listlessness is partly due to the inevitable crash at the end of November. It’s always good to follow some big project with a smaller one straight away in order to avoid the writing equivalent of the post exams blues. Then there are a whole bunch of anniversaries and the endless intrusive thoughts concerning “This time last year…” The Dementors had a field day with those. It took until Tuesday to finally shake them off.

Then of course there’s been the convenient distraction of books to read some of which are so addictive that other activities involving words just get tossed on the back burner. “The Girl with all the Gifts” and “The Pelican Brief” come to mind. The first of these is the quirkiest and creepiest book I have encountered since the very surreal and strange “The Hangman’s Replacement”. Lawyers, Dystopian settings, mad scientists and wicked weeds are always welcome in a story. Maybe I should make a ‘shopping list’ for next November.
Since starting that voluntary job in the charity shop and claiming the book shelves as serpent territory, it has provided a Pandora’s Box of temptations. It’s like being a boozer working in a bottle shop.
It’s amazing how many bright shiny new books make their way to the store from the central warehouse or direct donations. About 20 ancient Asimov books have also landed lately.

Today’s grand plan included a visit to the annual Symphony in the City which is a free event featuring the local orchestra and lots of fireworks. Last year was the first time I ever went to see it and liked it so much that I had every intention of going again. The weather is mild. Not muggy and not raining like last week but this morning I lost interest. After a long and busy day yesterday and another tomorrow, just felt like lurking and lounging about and being a lazy serpent.
Got a bit of gardening done and planted seeds and stuff but did not make the most of the mild weather. The Christmas decorations are still sitting in their boxes in the corner. They had been on the ‘to do’ list for today. It was pretty much a ‘Do nothing Day”

Looks like all the Christmas cards and decorations will have to be left until some time tomorrow.
Again.
izmeina: A cute cartoon critter with a bag and a teapot on his head (jolly swagman)
It looks like doing November’s novel writing adventure has totally used up the serpent stash of words for the remainder of the year. Even squiggling Christmas cards and emails has become a struggle and the subject of much procrastination. Especially annoying is that thanks to the drastic drop in the value of the Oz zloty, Christmas shopping on Amazon is no longer the handy one stop Christmas shop that it used to be.

For years and years I used to contrast and compare Amazon and Book Depository. In most cases they worked out much the same because what you would gain on price you would lose on postage fees with the odds tilting towards Amazon for orders of more than 2 items. But in those days the exchange rate was between 90 cents and parity and not the ghastly 70 something that it is now which means having to add just under 50% to the Amazon price to get the currency conversion.
It’s a pity because Amazon.com is such an easy to use site. There’s an address list that actually works and most importantly of all, they understand the concept that people sometimes send books as presents so they let you write little messages or they even wrap the books if you are feeling particularly decadent.

Book Depository on the other hand make you type out stupid addresses from scratch each time even if they are already in your address book and the concept of sending gift messages is completely alien to them even though it is rather likely that if the shipping and billing addresses are not the same, it’s probably a present.

But even with all this carping and squawking it’s is still better than the appalling alternative of having to use Australia Post for anything. I haven’t darkened the door of that awful owlery since December 2012 when one of their goblin snails ate my box of zombies. So much stuff had gotten lost or delayed for up to a year and that was the last nail in the coffin.

The recent Izzie listlessness is partly due to the inevitable crash at the end of November. It’s always good to follow some big project with a smaller one straight away in order to avoid the writing equivalent of the post exams blues. Then there are a whole bunch of anniversaries and the endless intrusive thoughts concerning “This time last year…” The Dementors had a field day with those. It took until Tuesday to finally shake them off.

Then of course there’s been the convenient distraction of books to read some of which are so addictive that other activities involving words just get tossed on the back burner. “The Girl with all the Gifts” and “The Pelican Brief” come to mind. The first of these is the quirkiest and creepiest book I have encountered since the very surreal and strange “The Hangman’s Replacement”. Lawyers, Dystopian settings, mad scientists and wicked weeds are always welcome in a story. Maybe I should make a ‘shopping list’ for next November.
Since starting that voluntary job in the charity shop and claiming the book shelves as serpent territory, it has provided a Pandora’s Box of temptations. It’s like being a boozer working in a bottle shop.
It’s amazing how many bright shiny new books make their way to the store from the central warehouse or direct donations. About 20 ancient Asimov books have also landed lately.

Today’s grand plan included a visit to the annual Symphony in the City which is a free event featuring the local orchestra and lots of fireworks. Last year was the first time I ever went to see it and liked it so much that I had every intention of going again. The weather is mild. Not muggy and not raining like last week but this morning I lost interest. After a long and busy day yesterday and another tomorrow, just felt like lurking and lounging about and being a lazy serpent.
Got a bit of gardening done and planted seeds and stuff but did not make the most of the mild weather. The Christmas decorations are still sitting in their boxes in the corner. They had been on the ‘to do’ list for today. It was pretty much a ‘Do nothing Day”

Looks like all the Christmas cards and decorations will have to be left until some time tomorrow.
Again.
izmeina: (Scabbers)
It began as an ordinary day in Dursleyville. It was crisp, crunchy and sunny. Just perfect weather for wearing a quirky grey poncho from the op shop.

So while there were plenty of dramas at the day job, I did not expect them to continue after leaving the building. By then it was nearly 4pm and the skies had gotten grey and overcast. It did not look like suitable walking weather and certainly not the sort for sitting in a park listening to the birds or reading the latest instalment of ratty badness from James Herbert. Decided instead to catch the train to the city, drop into the bottle shop to get something for Father’s Day and get back to the Lair within the 2 hours that the train ticket was valid. After all there was lots of seeds and weeds at the Lair to be planted and watered.

It’s a nasty poky bottle shop owned by one of the big 2 supermarkets. I normally never darken the door of the place unless there are special offers advertised because it is usually ridiculously expensive.

But a bottle of reserve port and a big juicy South Australian red from a reputable brand name for $35 was a very good deal indeed and I was half expecting that they would be all sold out.
Soon I was wishing they were. For when I’d stored the stash safely in my back pack and went to pick up my green frog and turtle adorned shopping bag from the floor before leaving the store, I suddenly realised that it had simply vanished. Not of its own accord I am sure but with a bit of help.

Rat bags and sneaking thieves )
izmeina: (Scabbers)
It began as an ordinary day in Dursleyville. It was crisp, crunchy and sunny. Just perfect weather for wearing a quirky grey poncho from the op shop.

So while there were plenty of dramas at the day job, I did not expect them to continue after leaving the building. By then it was nearly 4pm and the skies had gotten grey and overcast. It did not look like suitable walking weather and certainly not the sort for sitting in a park listening to the birds or reading the latest instalment of ratty badness from James Herbert. Decided instead to catch the train to the city, drop into the bottle shop to get something for Father’s Day and get back to the Lair within the 2 hours that the train ticket was valid. After all there was lots of seeds and weeds at the Lair to be planted and watered.

It’s a nasty poky bottle shop owned by one of the big 2 supermarkets. I normally never darken the door of the place unless there are special offers advertised because it is usually ridiculously expensive.

But a bottle of reserve port and a big juicy South Australian red from a reputable brand name for $35 was a very good deal indeed and I was half expecting that they would be all sold out.
Soon I was wishing they were. For when I’d stored the stash safely in my back pack and went to pick up my green frog and turtle adorned shopping bag from the floor before leaving the store, I suddenly realised that it had simply vanished. Not of its own accord I am sure but with a bit of help.

Rat bags and sneaking thieves )
izmeina: (Default)
Time flies when you are having fun. So much so that there’s been very little serpent posting online of late. Lots of slinking but other than the occasional comment or two, very little squiggling at all.

It’s mostly due to the annual ritual of Camp Nanowrimo as well as the occasional online course. The latest is Paradoxes and Infinity. It’s getting very mathy at the moment so extra time is needed to look at videos several times to get the old green cells around all the wierdness.
There are just so many fascinating courses out there so it has required a lot of will power to indulge in just one at a time. They are much more fun that way. It took a while to get used to the idea that there are plenty of chances to get more than one bite of the cherry so there is no need to fill one’s plate to overflowing, pigging out on too many temptations and then hardly tasting anything due to being so greedy.

Then there’s been the 150th birthday of the adventures of Alice, the Mad Hatter, Cheshire Cat and a whole bunch of crazy quirky characters. So it was just the excuse to dust off an old dead tree copy with some absolutely gorgeous illustrations. Not just the usual Tenniel but Arthur Rackham and a whole bunch of others.

A Collection of Curious Creatures )
izmeina: (Crazy Cats)
Time flies when you are having fun. So much so that there’s been very little serpent posting online of late. Lots of slinking but other than the occasional comment or two, very little squiggling at all.

It’s mostly due to the annual ritual of Camp Nanowrimo as well as the occasional online course. The latest is Paradoxes and Infinity. It’s getting very mathy at the moment so extra time is needed to look at videos several times to get the old green cells around all the wierdness.
There are just so many fascinating courses out there so it has required a lot of will power to indulge in just one at a time. They are much more fun that way. It took a while to get used to the idea that there are plenty of chances to get more than one bite of the cherry so there is no need to fill one’s plate to overflowing, pigging out on too many temptations and then hardly tasting anything due to being so greedy.

Then there’s been the 150th birthday of the adventures of Alice, the Mad Hatter, Cheshire Cat and a whole bunch of crazy quirky characters. So it was just the excuse to dust off an old dead tree copy with some absolutely gorgeous illustrations. Not just the usual Tenniel but Arthur Rackham and a whole bunch of others.

A Collection of Curious Creatures )

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