Monthly Archives: June 2010

Going on the Account: Set Sail With an Eye Atop the Mast…

There’s a post over at about the CG film on Captain Harlock.

Pirates.  In space.

And this doesn’t get you fired up why…?

Think about it:  Two of the great American mythic themes, pirates (the originators of the work ethic and blind belief in market forces that made the New Word the inspired and sexy place we think we inhabit), and going into space (the hope that our core ideal about having a frontier we can turn to for escape and exploitation will always be there and not have died the day we admitted Arizona into the union [February 14th, 1912]), combined together and updated for a new generation.  What’s not to get hot and bothered for?

Yes, it’s a Japanese property with a long history, that hopefully won’t get as bad a treatment as the effort to update ASTRO BOY did.  With any luck, when it gets sent over here to us giajin we’ll appreciate it for what it is, telling a familiar story with cutting edge tools that hopefully won’t lose the power of the original as we receive it.

Pirates.  In space.  And this is not worth noting why…?

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Going on the Account: If Not Your First Choice…

There was a profile of Jon Gnarr over the weekend in the NY TIMES, that deserves merit here for this quote given in the piece:

Mr. Gnarr, born in Reykjavik as Jon Gunnar Kristinsson to a policeman and a kitchen worker, was not a model child. At 11, he decided school was useless to his future as a circus clown or pirate and refused to learn any more.

The mind reels at where it wanders on reading that…


Hear the stand-up of BLACKBEARD, with a special appearance by the duo of ANNE AND MARY!

“Arrr, they be cut-ups!” – William Kidd

Three shares of yer booty! Two drink minimum!

…Yeah, the heat’s getting to me too…

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Going on the Account: Part the Two Hundred Fifty First

Part the Two Hundred Fifty First of RAGING GAIL is now up, and may be read here.

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Going on the Account: Part the Two Hundred Fiftieth

Part the Two Hundred Fiftieth of RAGING GAIL is now up, and may be read here.

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Going on the Account: Running Silent, Running Afar…

This article from BBC about the Dutch providing a submarine for duty off Somalia has a few points of interest; the smaller of the two is the idea of using subs to go after pirates, which I hope was handled with all the dignity Irwin Allen could muster on the episode “The Return of Blackbeard” from VOYAGE TO THE BOTTOM OF THE SEA

…mind you, should I find and watch this episode and later discover this was not the case, then hell, there’s going to be a sudden opening in the market for pirates-and-submarines fiction that I’m going to try and fill…

The more important point is provided by the graphic showing the range that the modern buccaneers have traveled to go after prizes.  About the only thing keeping them from going around the other side of the Arabian Peninsula for some truly rich treasures is the presence of the 5th Fleet in the area, seconded in difficulty by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard, which recently took over the Iranian navy.   And there’s probably a few that might just look at that as a challenge…

What’s striking, though, is how surprised some folks seem to be by the long distances the pirates are willing to go.  Throughout history, pirates have been willing to venture further than anticipated; case in point was the time Francis Drake took the REALLY LONG way home

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Going on the Account: Such Signal Flags as These…

I was referred tonight to Rosenfeld and Quackenbush’s Wet Asphalt blog, and in particular Eric Rosenfeld’s post about Robin Sloan.

There’s a lot of praise of Sloan and his website in the piece, which discusses as much his business model as his body of work.   And I have to admit to being like the humans at the very beginning of Clarke’s CHILDHOOD’S END, trying to win the space race until the aliens appear and shut all that down.  One of the things I’ve tried to do here was to find new ways to get out there, find an audience and use new tools in the best way I can.  Sloan is streets ahead of me, and probably most online writers, which alone in and of itself certainly warrants attention.

But the best business model means nothing without good product, and he has that the way galleons had silver from Nueva Espania.  I was particularly struck by a story he has on the site, which he can share with a broad audience now that he’s sold 100 copies of it via Kindle, “The Writer & The Witch.”  I don’t want to spoil it for you; go, follow the link and read it!

A media inventor with good content to boot; yes, there is hope out there for the culture at large…

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Going on the Account: Part the Two Hundred Forty Ninth

Part the Two Hundred Forty Ninth of RAGING GAIL is now up, and may be read here.

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