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Monthly Archives: February 2016

(Movie Review) Judgement at Nuremberg

Politics 150Judgement at Nuremberg (1961)
Starring Spencer Tracy, Maximillian Schell, Burt Lancaster and Marlene Dietrich
Directed by Stanley Kramer
Written by Abby Mann

A few years after the end of World War II, a battered Europe is beyond ready to move on. Germany, now that the atrocities of the concentration camps are out in the open, is in a state of shock as a country. Its people struggle to deal with the reality of what it’s done, wondering how it could have allowed the systematic eradication of its Jewish population, undesirable elements and political enemies. The United States is already moving on to its next conflict, setting the pieces in place to fight a cold war with the growing communist threat of the Soviet Union.

But before we can put the war to rest, there’s this small matter of deciding what to do about the judges, military officers and others who solidified Nazi policies into the law of the land. When these orders came from the top down, how much responsibility do the people in charge of putting them into motion carry with them? Should they be prosecuted for the horrific effects of these policies? Or is their duty to carrying out the will of their state — right or wrong — of greater importance than a more universal set of morality? How do we decide to treat war criminals when they had only limited power with which to resist committing these crimes?

Judgement at Nuremberg is about the trial of 98 civil servants in post-war Germany, mainly boiled down to the question of what to do about five judges who presided over the courts and passed rulings that lead to the sterilization of some, the death or imprisonment of others, the horrors of the concentration camps to too many. The crux of the trial is that very question — how much responsibility do we give to actors of the state when the country has essentially legalized war crimes? Does personal and/or social survival form an effective excuse for a complete lapse in moral judgement? Or should we expect people to abandon their duty to their country if a more fundamental set of beliefs are violated?

Spencer Tracy stars as Presiding Judge Dan Haywood, a former district court judge from Maine who is called upon to determine what happens to these men. Judge Haywood must not only decide the considerable issue in front of him, but he must also attempt to understand how an entire country could fall in line with these terrible ideals and resist the political pressure of his own country’s military as they prepare for a Cold — and possibly real — war with the Soviet Union.

I’ll jump right in and say this: Judgement at Nuremberg is an excellent movie that everyone in this country should see. The acting is genuinely great all around, lead by elder statesman Tracy as he guides a parade of stars through the proceedings. The cinematography is amazing, focusing on the people who are grappling with the consequences of their actions but pulling back just enough for you to understand the context and society in which they’re doing so. The direction is tight and crisp; even though this is a beast of a movie at 179 minutes, it really doesn’t feel like there’s any wasted time. Every scene is necessary to understand a facet of the issue, or the motivations of the characters dealing with them.

Director Stanley Kramer does a wonderful job exploring the full texture of Abby Mann’s Oscar-winning Adapted Screenplay. There are so many interesting ideas at work here — watching Germany wake up from its National Socialist nightmare with bewilderment and guilt and a desperate desire to reaffirm its own morality makes many of the “ordinary” Germans Haywood meet sympathetic but also infuriating. “We had no idea” is a common refrain for so many of them, but how could they not understand what was happening in their own country? How much of that ignorance was intentional — faced with the choice of confronting the knowledge of wrong-doing and being forced to act on it, or keeping your head down to attract as little attention from a brutal power structure as possible, what would you do? It’s hard to imagine myself in that position and not thinking I would be just like them — especially if I had a family or children to think about.

Beyond that, the movie posits that it wasn’t just Germany’s responsibility to stop Adolf Hitler before he attained a stranglehold on power; the world at large sat by and watched it happen — so if Germany’s judges and prosecutors are on trial then the governments of Europe should be too. Many of them also “had no idea” how far Hitler would go before he did, but how much of that ignorance was intentional? If we hold those in the judicial system responsible, why not the executives of other countries, or the diplomats, or the militaries? Where do we stop assigning the blame?

Judgement at Nuremberg also draws very interesting parallels between the Germany of the 1930s and the United States of the 1950s. Judge Haywood is told that political considerations must be factored into his decision, and that in order to successfully repel the threat of Communist Soviets America must have Germany on its side. Early in the proceedings of the trial, it’s accepted as fact that the National Socialist rose to power on the promise of stopping the Communist threat. It’s a slippery slope argument, true, but the idea that Haywood is asked to repeat the shading of the law here at the same time he’s supposed to condemn that very thing is unsettling — and likely true.

And that’s what makes this movie so vital for us today. It’s rare that you see entire nations reflect in on themselves about what it means to be American, or German, or British — and what, precisely, is the individual’s duty to the state. Judgement at Nuremberg reminds us that Nazi Germany put monsters in charge but was also populated by people just like you and me who thought being patriotic meant enacting the law of your country even when you disagreed with it, knew in your heart that it was unjust. Their reasons — and they all had their reasons — ranged from “what could we do about it even if we disagreed?” to “my country, right or wrong”. If we put ourselves in their positions — a married set of servants, or a wealthy socialite, or an intellectual interested in the rule of law — and we had to deal with our government systematically strip the rights of its minorities or political dissidents, what would we do? Honestly.

The political environment of Germany in the early 1930s has startling similarities to the political environment of our country in the 2010s. We’re willing to do anything, sacrifice anything in order to give ourselves the illusion of safety and control. We want to blame the foreign elements in our midst for our problems; we see a vague and shadowy threat to our very existence and want to attack anything that we know might upset the status quo. We are a deeply divided nation. And we have individuals running for office who claim to know just how we can restore our country to greatness — by tolerating no dissent, refusing any attempt at discourse, at identifying and removing anything that could even vaguely be a threat to our national security.

I wish I was being hyperbolic or alarmist by saying this, but I’m not. But we do have a choice, each and every one of us, about how we deal with what’s happening. Does history repeat itself? Or do we learn the hard lessons that were taught in our past?

In order to have a hope of answering these questions, we have to understand how it could have happened in the first place. What lead an entire nation of moral, upright people to install one of the most terribly brutal regimes in human history? What justifications did they use? How can we make sure we don’t fall prey to those same justifications?

I won’t claim that Judgement at Nuremberg offers complete answers to these questions, but watching this movie is an excellent start at wrapping your head around them.

 
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Posted by on February 29, 2016 in Movies, Politics, Reviews, Self-Reflection

 

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(Personal) A Different Kind of Work

Self Improvement 150Now that the month is almost over, I think it’s safe to say that February wasn’t nearly as quiet as I hoped it would be.

The day job has continued to be incredibly demanding; five of the most senior members of my team were shipped off to Europe for training and integration with the company we’ve merged with. It’s a big blow to lose five members of your team to begin with, but to have your most senior colleagues out of pocket for two whole weeks is a tremendous drain of knowledge and resources. Those of us who were left in the trenches have been scrambling almost non-stop to deal with the workload.

That isn’t to say the work hasn’t been engaging, even exciting — I’m learning a lot of new things and it’s forcing me to push myself further outside of my comfort zone faster than I would have preferred it. Given the naturally timid nature of rabbits and their cousins, that’s not a bad thing. I’m pleased to have been able to step up into a more active role, honing my communication skills with our customers, practicing my troubleshooting skills and learning the skeleton and muscle of our system. But it has been exhausting, and it’s left little room for anything else.

I managed to finish the first draft of “A Stable Love” at the beginning of the month, but since then writing has all but stalled. I’ve managed to be reasonably current with my Patreon serial, but that’s still a struggle — I always feel behind, and I’d like very much to have enough space to start organizing the story a bit better but that might be a ways off. And I wasn’t able to get it together at all for my People of Color Destroy Science Fiction story, so “The Tourist” remains an unwritten dream. That’s the thing that sucks the most, and I feel is my biggest failure this month. Not only did I miss the boat on an anthology I really believed in, I also dropped the ball with helping another writer workshop her story for it. She submitted a couple of pieces without me, and I’m proud of her! But it’s still a bummer.

The Writing Desk has been bare this month while I struggle to deal with the demands of the day job, a Project Management class I’ve been taking for a couple of months, and other things that need to be done. I’ll be trying to check in with small updates and shorter posts for a while, just to get back into the habit; but I’m not sure how long it will be before I can get ahead with the blog as well.

It’s not ALL doom and gloom; reading has been wonderful. Steppenwolf has been a lovely surprise, mostly due to the wonderfully flowery language of its translation and the fact that I forgot just how “furry” this novel really is. It’ll be interesting to talk about with a few other folks later. I’m slowly but surely catching up to my comics reading list, and I’m thoroughly enjoying the Project Management textbook for class. I can practically feel myself becoming more banal with that statement, trust me.

I’m working on a few guests posts for Claw & Quill and [adjective][species], both excellent blogs in their own right. I’m trying to organize my to-do list for the publication of New Fables this year, and restarting my Pathfinder game sometime in the next three months. And of course, there’s that pipe dream of eventually starting up a mental health for geeks podcast that seems so far off right now.

For now, though, the big focus is the day job, the night class and the Patreon. It looks like making sure that’s taken care of will take me through the rest of February.

 
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Posted by on February 22, 2016 in Writing

 

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(Personal) Spiritual Appropriation: Lent

Buddhism 150Today is the first day of Lent, a 40-day period of fasting and contemplation for those of us who practice Christianity. It begins with Ash Wednesday, where Christians are marked with the ashes of palm leaves that had been blessed during last year’s Palm Sunday and told “From dust you are, and to dust you will return.” Over the next six weeks — ending with Easter Sunday — worshippers engage in prayer, penance, the giving of alms, and self-denial. For most of us who are a bit more secular, Lent is mainly a way to feel a bit better about falling off of our New Year’s Resolutions by vowing to give up a bad habit for 40 days or so.

I’ve always been fascinated by festivals of self-denial and contemplation. Shortly after 9/11, a friend of mine still in high school practiced Ramadan as a show of solidarity with the local Muslim community and I joined in. I learned an awful lot about my relationship with food over that time and just how hard it is to deny yourself something if you’ve gotten used to indulging in it whenever you wanted. As the month went on, I cultivated a significant appreciation of food — getting up before sunrise every morning to make breakfast helped me to spend some time in the quiet, loving the small bit of food I’d take in to last me the rest of the day. And eating at sunset — often with other people — was almost always something special. The whole month brought a mindfulness to eating and gave me a newfound respect and joy when it came to breaking bread with other people. I may not act on the lessons I’ve learned there right now, but I still remember them.

The period of Lent is meant to give Christians a small taste of what it must have been like for Jesus Christ those forty days he wandered in the desert before beginning his public ministry. It’s a way to take a step back, focus on the things that are really important to you, put yourself in a space where you think about things a little differently. The most popular aspect of Lent — self-denial — can still be useful even to those of us who aren’t practicing Christians by showing us just how much we’ve come to rely on certain things and just how little we actually need them.

If you’re Christian and about to embark on the forty-day contemplation of Lent, I wish you a wonderful and holy season. If you’re non-Christian and using this as an opportunity to examine your relationship to something you think you can’t do without, good luck. You absolutely can, and I hope you’ll have a deeper appreciation of yourself and how you work when Easter Sunday rolls around.

Me, I’m going to do my best to give up mindlessness over Lent. It’s a bit of a cheat, but really zeroing in on habitual behaviors — especially when they’re negative — is something I could really use. It’s all right to get some down time, of course; but it’s so much better when that’s a conscious decision I’ve made as opposed to a default behavior I fall into whenever there’s free time. I will do my best to cultivate mindfulness, to speak, write and act with purpose, to strive to make myself, my surroundings and my fellow man better.

Now it’s just a matter of figuring out exactly how to do that! Are any of you giving up something for Lent? What does the observance mean to you? Have I gotten anything wrong in my understanding of it? Let me know in the comments!

 
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Posted by on February 10, 2016 in Buddhism, Self-Reflection

 

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(Personal) In The Weeds

Writing 150So the last two weeks haven’t been very good for me, focus wise.

For the third week in a row, I haven’t posted a new part to the Jackalope Serial Company — something that I set out wanting to avoid at all costs. My story for People of Colo(u)r Destroy Science Fiction is practically dead on arrival, and with ten days left until the submission deadline there isn’t a whole lot of time for me to work on it. Work on New Fables has ground to a halt while I’m dealing with just about everything else, and the day job has been plenty demanding in its own right. With social obligations, exercise and other things, it feels like I just haven’t been able to get a handle on anything so far this month.

And you know what? That’s OK. There are some periods that will be like that — where things feel out of control, where another fire pops up as soon as you stamp one down, where you feel like you’re working as hard as you can just to break even. But those periods will eventually end; you will be able to take a breath, renew your focus and do the best you can to achieve what you can in the time you can.

I’m knocking on wood here, but I’m hoping that the worst of the busy season is over for a month or two. Last week was preparing for my first on-call weekend, which proved to be more challenging than expected for a number of reasons. The interesting thing about my day job is that there are so many new things to learn; the flipside is that almost every thing that comes up is new to me. It takes time to learn enough to feel comfortable with things, and during my on-call weekend time was something in short supply. It was difficult balancing the needs of my customers with the desire to understand just what the hell I was doing. The plans that I had made for an orderly workflow over the week were thrown out of the window by Friday evening; Saturday was mostly spent trying to figure out one or two issues; Sunday morning was the only day it felt like I could get ahead of things, so I took advantage.

I had hoped to at least spend a little time writing over the weekend, but that did not happen. It was all day job, all the time.

And that leaves me in something of a difficult position with my projects. I’ll need to make things right over at the Patreon any way I know how; I’ll need to shut myself away for a few days this week to power through a working draft of “The Tourist”; and I’ll need to use my newfound powers of Project Management to break down everything I’ll need to do in order to bring New Fables to publication.

So far, the ambitious goals I’ve set for 2016 have had to be rolled back a bit. I’ve taken a bit of time to panic about that, and to mourn the fact that I wasn’t able to do what I set out to do; now it’s time to regroup and re-dedicate myself.

Writing to meet tight deadlines; reading to learn how to be better organized; focusing on what’s in front of me to achieve what I want. That’s this week. See to it! Go do it!

 
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Posted by on February 9, 2016 in Buddhism, Self-Reflection, Writing

 

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(Personal) What’s Up in February?

Self Improvement 150Now that January has been put to bed, it’s time to look ahead into the next month. What does a successful February look like for me?

For one thing, I’m glad that this month should be a lot quieter than the last one. It gives me time to take a breath, regroup and figure out a few things for the spring and summer. Looking further ahead, there’s a lot to prepare for: the dearest husband will be going out of town in April, and I’d like to have a revamped Oak’s Home campaign ready and waiting for him when he comes back; I’ll be taking a number of trips later this year, though I really need to decide where — Wisconsin for an annual gathering of friends, or WorldCon in Kansas City, or Rainfurrest in Spokane, or my sister-in-law’s wedding (assuming I’m invited) in Arkansas? Dates, expense, time off and all kinds of other things need to be sorted out and hammered down. Making sure I’ve taken the time to prepare for this makes it easier to plan for everything else down the stretch.

But that’s later; this is now. So here are my biggest priorities for the month.

The Jackalope Serial Company
My Patreon for serialized erotic fiction got off to a shaky start last month, and I’d like to work hard on it to make sure that doesn’t happen again. With any sort of regularly-updating story, communication and engagement with your audience is key, so I’ve bundled that in to my weekly task list for the JSC now — every Monday, there’ll be a brief note about what my patrons can expect in the week or two ahead.

There’s also the matter of making sure The Cult of Maximus is written. Last month (and most of this one), I’ve been flying by the seat of my pants. I’d like to take the time to really plot out the next couple of chapters and write as much as I can so I can build a small buffer. This cuts down on interruptions, and being ahead of the curve means that I can double back and edit the weekly parts into a chapter a bit more easily. Having lead time to get things done is never a bad thing, right?

Beyond that, I need to sign up for a streaming service and buy a webcam in order to make writing streams or Internet hangouts a reality. And it would be nice to come up with polls for patrons contributing at the “input” level while The Cult of Maximus is going. Since this particular serial was designed to take us through 2016, it’ll be a little while before anyone gets to vote on the next one.

So: write as much of The Cult of Maximus as I can to get ahead of the release schedule, and work on making the patron rewards more consistent and clear. That’s what I hope to have accomplished by March 1st.

Other Writing
The People of Colo(u)r Destroy Science Fiction deadline is THIS MONTH, and so I need to write “The Tourist” and have it critiqued for a revision edit quick and in a hurry. Frith willing, the short story will be finished this weekend, sent to the writing group for notes and revised by right after Valentine’s Day. This is the fastest turnaround for a story I’ve ever attempted, but I would kick myself if I didn’t submit something — not just a story, but something I felt had a chance of getting in.

Once that’s done and my stomach is in knots waiting for a response, I can move on to the commission for a generous donor to last year’s Clarion Write-A-Thon. That’s been a long time coming — not as long as the commissioner for “A Stable Love” thank goodness — but still long enough. I’d like to have that work take me through the back half of the month, with an eye towards finishing a rough draft by early March.

So: biggest priority is making sure “The Tourist” is submission-ready by the Feb. 19th deadline, and I’ve at made progress on short story #4.

Reading
JM Horse convinced me to double-back and re-read Steppenwolf by Hermann Hesse, and I’m excited to jump into that. I’d like to have that (book 3 of 20 to read this year) knocked out by the end of the month. I’d also like to write reviews for the Apocalypse Triptych and Kindred by Octavia Butler, to go up here, Amazon and GoodReads.

My friends loaned me Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition a few months ago, and I’d really like to start in on that so I can decide whether or not to buy my own copy of the hard-covers. I’ve been considering changing my Oak’s Home Pathfinder game to a system that feels like it’s fighting me less (like D&D5e or FATE), but any shift in system feels like a dealbreaker to at least one of my players.

Of course, there’s also my growing stack of comics to run through — I’ll start taking a few with me to work so I can read a few pages while waiting for queries or processes to finish. Most importantly, I want to cultivate a habit of reading; it’s not something that I’ve prioritized for a long time, and I want to change that as much as possible.

So: read Steppenwolf, catch up on my comics, and dive in to D&D 5th edition.

Other Things
Writing and reading take precedence right now, but I’d also like to re-dedicate myself to taking better care of my body. I’ve had a…distant relationship with it and that needs to change. I’d like to be more mindful of it — I’m not just a brain floating through space, and the body isn’t just there to support my thoughts and make sure I continue to think. Eating better, exercising, grooming and looking after my health are all things I’ll be trying to do a better job with, though it’s not quite with the same focus I’ll be trying to tackle everything else.

 
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Posted by on February 4, 2016 in Comic Books, Reading, Self-Reflection, Writing

 

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(Personal) What Happened in January?

Self Improvement 150January 2016 was an extraordinarily busy month; everything just took off like a rocket, and it was all that I could do to hold on. Most of the work was anticipated, but I think I under-estimated the effect of a lot of it, and of course my still-developing organizational skills weren’t quite up to the task of keeping everything in order so I could get stuff done. I spent the last day of the month traveling from New York back to Silicon Valley, so exhausted I didn’t even realize how tired I was until I got a good night’s sleep.

Even still, I can’t say it was a bad time. I did a lot of stuff that was fun and enriching, and now that I made it through the worst of it I can take a breath, look at what went right, what went wrong, and how I can use the momentum of the month to propel me through my projects for this one. Here’s a brief rundown of the major events last month:

The Jackalope Serial Company
On New Year’s Day or thereabouts, I launched the Jackalope Serial Company. It’s an idea that had been brewing through the last six months of 2015, and I felt I was finally in a good position to make it happen. The JSC is basically the label through which I tell serialized erotic stories, one chunk every week, until it’s finished. The idea is to put up parts of 1500 – 2500 words a week on the Patreon, then edit those parts into monthly chapters that get released to SoFurry, Fur Affinity and Weasyl at a later date. The first serial is The Cult of Maximus, which I’m expecting to be a 100K-word story when all is said and done. That should take us through the first year of the JSC’s existence.

Launch was reasonably successful; to date I’ve got 17 patrons donating just over $100/month for the cause. I appreciate every single one of them! John Cooner did a bang up job on the launch poster/wallpaper, business cards and other assets that will be rolled out in the next month or so. And I’ve put up the first three parts of the story in January, with parts 4 and 5 coming (hopefully) this week to close out chapter 1.

I wasn’t as regular as I would have liked to be starting out, for reasons that I’ll talk about below. I’ll be spending much of this month and next trying to build up a small buffer so I can make sure the schedule is regular even if something unexpected happens. For now, though, I’m flying by the seat of my fluffy white tail. Thanks to my patrons for the patience they’ve displayed and the feedback they’ve given so far; really looking forward to having things settle into a routine this month!

Further Confusion 2016
This is kind of the biggest furry event of the year for me, and this year was no exception. I took part in five panels this year: “Power and Privilege in an Anthropomorphic World”, “Furries and the Other”, “Write Now!”, “Brainstorming in Real Time” and “Mindfulness and Transformation Workshop”.

The first two were the biggest surprises and fulfilling experiences I’ve had at a convention in a long time; there’s a real receptiveness to the idea of exploring our differences and power dynamics through furry fiction, and the audience was lively, insightful and wonderful. This is definitely a keeper; I’d love to be involved with it next year. The second two were awesome mainly because I just got to hang out with members of my writing group and talk with other writers about ways we can push ourselves past our blocks or think about constructing stories in a different way. I don’t think I’ve ever laughed as much as I did in those two panels.

For Mindfulness/Transformation, my friend Kannik and I tried a structure to make sure we went over the most important ideas we wanted to transmit and I think that went over pretty well. The exercise portion of the panel could still use some work, but we talked about how to adapt that depending on the read we get from the audience; next year, I think we’ll have a pretty good handle on things.

Away from the panels, having conversations and meals with a few people I don’t get to talk to that often were the highlight. This fandom is full of such a varied mix of interesting, passionate and unique people, and cons are one of the ways we can plug into that directly. I love talking to people and seeing their perspectives on all kinds of things; it makes me fall in love with the community all over again.

The Day Job Summit
This was a bit of a wrench. My company had merged with a similar one in Europe after being bought by a holding company last year. Initially, the plan was to bring everything together slowly and carefully, making sure the customers for each side didn’t feel spooked by what was going on. Apparently, the executives discovered that was no longer a concern and ordered a giant event for the merger kick-off this last weekend in January.

So, this was the first work trip I had ever taken, which is another milestone in my professional development. Thankfully, my husband came with me to hang out and be a tourist, so I was able to enjoy the vacation side of things through his eyes. We also know quite a number of people in the area, and we were able to visit with a few of them.

The overall effect of the summit was building a sense of community between two very different sides of the company; I’m not sure how well that came off, but I know that my particular department (Technical Support) grew a lot closer through the experience. I got to meet a lot of really neat people in European tech support, and we traded war stories. But for maybe the first time, I feel like a fully-accepted member of the team I work in, and that’s just incredible. I can legit say I love the company I work for, and the people I work with.

We also saw our first Broadway show while we were out there — the runaway-smash musical Hamilton. If you haven’t listened to the soundtrack yet, do yourself a favor and pull it up on Spotify or your music-streaming service of choice. You will NOT be disappointed. It’s a hip-hop/rap musical about a founding father whose story almost never gets told, Alexander Hamilton. The inversion of race (Hamilton, Aaron Burr, Thomas Jefferson and other major characters are black) really punches up the drive of the Founding Fathers, brings their tragedies home in a way I had never considered, and makes me empathize with them in a way I never had before. It makes this old, distant history alive and personal. It’s so good.

New York City is a hell of a town. We visited Wall Street, saw people fondling the bull outside of the NYSE, visited Trinity Church and Fraunces Tavern; we went to Brooklyn and had brunch at Flatbush Farm with a major sci-fi/fantasy author (!!); and partied pretty hard at Celsius in Bryant Park, The Eagle on the lower west side (?) and Grand Central Terminal. We saw subway dancers who were amazing, listened to cellists and jazz ensembles, saw the knock-off mascots threatening people in Times Square. All in all, a hell of a trip.

Writing/Reading
I started out strong in January, finishing my first short story of the year for MegaMorphics (“New Year, New You”) and wanted to have “A Stable Love” done but the JSC work sucked up all the oxygen in that room. I started The Cult of Maximus, but didn’t get as far with that as I’d like, so this month will be a bit of righting the ship as far as that’s concerned.

I did read an awful lot, though. I’m catching up on my backlog of comics — I’m finding “The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl” to be a singular delight, and I’m really digging “Sam Wilson: Captain America”. I finished Kindred by Octavia Butler, and that has been a life-changing book for me. It fundamentally changes my idea of black women for the better, and I’ll need to let that cook for a moment or two. I started The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by NK Jemisin, and I’m looking forward to finishing that, and I finished the third collection of the Apocalypse Triptych, called The End Has Come. It features (mostly) post-apocalyptic stories, many of them continued from stories in the other two collections. It was a neat idea that had a satisfying and surprising set of conclusions, and I’m looking forward to talking about that later.

Meanwhile, my reading stack grows all the time. 🙂 Since it’s Black History Month, I feel like I should be reading something theme-appropriate, and there is no shortage of books that fit that bill. I’ll talk a little bit about that tomorrow.

So that was my January in a nutshell; incredibly busy, full of wonderful and enriching experiences, as well as a lot of opportunities for growth and learning with various personal projects. Tomorrow, I’ll talk about my plans for this month and what I hope to have achieved when looking back on it sometime in March.

How was YOUR month? What were your highlights? What stories did you complete or make progress on? What things did you notice that you could do better?

 

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