Something I have needed to do for some time, so your patience is appreciated.
IMPORTANT: Note that the second question allows for multiple answers.
I’m in court tomorrow morning (it is my job, after all) and that combined with a couple other things means Al’Rashad won’t get published Monday morning as per usual. We will get it up as soon as possible! (I think this is only the second time we’ve been late, which is not bad for a comic that has been going for… holy shit, over two and a half years? Man, the time gets away from you, don’t it.
Unfortunately, my internet at home is down because I made the mistake of thinking that maybe I should upgrade my internet to something that wouldn’t require me to pre-cache a lousy YouTube video and would actually make me consider subscribing to Netflix.
The punchline here is I live in Canada and expecting the internet people to make it easy for me to pay them more money for additional services was kind of a pipe dream, but they sure remembered to turn off my old internet. So, until they either turn on my old internet or set up the new one I am severely constrained in my posting capabilities.
Hey, this is the Tech Guy. We’ve got a new social network widget here. The old one wasn’t working reliably with Facebook, due to something on their end. To use the new widget, just mouse over or click on the placeholder graphic below the post – below the older sharing buttons. Compared to using the normal Like button, the pages will load faster and the Facebook tracking code won’t load automatically, which the privacy-conscious might appreciate.
I used a plugin for socialite.js, if you want to do something similar.
Please kick the tires and let me know if it works for you. Thanks!
Peyton, over in John Seavey’s post about the Fake Geek Girl bullshit which I am glad he wrote because honestly at this point I just do not have the energy to engage with that bullshit for what feels like the tenth time, writes:
As a complete aside I also wanted to thank MGK, John Seavey, and Jim Smith for this site. As someone said upthread, it’s one of the few places, along with Scalzi’s Whatever, Evanier’s blog, and Jim Hines blog and a few others that, as a female nerd, feels safe and supportive.
I’m just gonna say that I feel very proud to have received this comment, since I decided quite some time ago (like, years) that this was going to be one of my primary goals for the site. As I get older1 I find myself getting more liberal rather than less, which is a pleasant thing to realize, and John and Jim and everybody else I’ve invited to the site were invited, at least in part, because I knew they had no truck with all of the bullshit that nerd-dom encourages in celebration of the straight white guy norm. And I say that as a white guy who mostly invited straight white guys, which happened mostly because whenever I’ve encouraged guest bloggers to apply, they are usually straight white guys.2
This really isn’t just about the blog, either, but what I do generally. I mean, I’ve said before that Al’Rashad is adapted from a screenplay I wrote about a dozen years ago, but the simple truth is that the comic is much better than the screenplay ever was. The big action beats are for the most part the same thus far, but:
- Originally Rayana was much less proactive as a character. Even then I wanted her to be kick-ass, but as written in the screenplay, she was not nearly at the nigh-Brainiac-Five level of intelligence and competence which she is at now, and she works, I think, so much better now than she did previously. Having Kahal be her personal engine of destruction adds a new twist to their relationship which I like quite a bit as well; I like that Kahal takes his lead from Rayana whenever it isn’t a “right now we fight desperately” moment.
- Apali was originally male, and moreover was not nearly so important to the story as she is now. Making her female actually broadened her quite a bit and let me do more with her. The fact that she has essentially been Rayana’s surrogate mother isn’t something I’ve explicitly written in a page yet, but I think it’s pretty obvious, and that simply wouldn’t work as well if she were male as she was originally.
- Also, Joro really should have been a girl, as I’ve written previously, but the ship sailed on that one. Sometimes you realize things too late.
- Finally, there’s one more major character aspect that hasn’t been revealed yet (and might not even be revealed in the first story arc) but to which I gave serious thought, then discussed it with Davinder, then discussed it further with a few people whose opinion I respect in order to make sure that it would work with what had been written already. I think when it gets revealed people will accuse me of pandering (as always happens in these instances), but again: it’s something that makes the overall story simply work better. This is because different races and genders and sexual orientations and all the rest: they’re not checkboxes you have to fill in to pass a test. To blatantly steal from Pratchett: they are all different metals, and alloys are stronger.
I’m drifting a bit here from my original point because I started talking about my comic (which you should all read and adore, of course), but to get back to it: it’s a damn shame that the internet needs places that are “safe and supportive” for female nerds and gay nerds and non-white nerds and all of the other nerds who are not typical nerds, because everybody should have the right to act like a goddamned overgrown child about some irrelevant piece of pop-culture if they so choose because that is what we are all doing, really. The question should not even have to be posed. More people who I can argue “but Superman would TOTALLY beat up Thor” with is always going to be a benefit. More people who will argue whether the Enterprise could blow up a Star Destroyer are always welcome.3 I really don’t care if they have tits or different amounts of melanin – I care that they have fresh perspectives and new ideas, because more ideas is always better.
But so long as those places are necessary, I am determined that my place will be one of those places. This is not an ironclad promise that I will always be perfectly enlightened, because we are all works in progress and nobody ever gets it right one hundred percent of the time. But I think it is important that I try.
Okay, soapbox mode over, and tomorrow if I have time I’ll write the essay about Wreck-It Ralph that lots of people have been demanding for some reason.
So it has come time, once again, to pay my web-hosting fees. I am not saying all of you should feel obligated to hit the Paypal button on the right-hand sidebar; far from it. I don’t put up ads because I don’t think my readers should be forced to pay anything; this is my place, after all.
But – it would be appreciated, certainly.
And for everyone, donors and not: requests for posts/discussion in the comments! Usual rules apply.
So I’ve been busy the last week, not with work (well, I’m always busy with work-a-day work, but you know what I mean). I’ve been busy writing, because Harper Voyager announced this, and I’ve got a half-finished novel that’s at about the 60K word mark and if I bust ass I might be able to submit it by deadline and have it not be shitty.
I’m going to try and maintain the regular posting level for the next few weeks, but if things drop off, things drop off a bit. Sorry, guys. If it looks like I won’t make deadline I will ease off the throttle.
Hey, remember the “Internet Nice Guy” post from 2007? Well, it still gets traffic and the occasional comment, and I felt I should share this one, from “doesntmatter” (although I added some paragraph breaks to his wall of text):
So funny how everbody jumps on the bandwagon an the females aplaud the author for being totally one sided and saying exactly what they want to hear, while he totally disregards the other side of the story, that some females indeed are bitches who just use males when they are in the need, e.g. if their asshole boyfriend dumped her again (because he just wanted sex and nothing more, and that was clear from the beginning for everyone except for her), perfectly knowing that the guy they are using is loner who wants a girlfriend (and sex, of course) and will do pretty much anything for her, and instead of saying “You? Never!” or just talking to another person they just throw him away after use and forget it.
I mean, how can they NOT know that he of COURSE wants to fuck with her? That does not per se mean that he ONLY wants to fuck with her, but maybe talking and being nice to each other is not the only thing he is dreaming of… Then there are females that just tease males to ridicule them later. That makes one bitter indeed, doesn’t it? And then, if that bitter person complains, it is all HIS fault for being an asshole in the first place? Give me a brake, that is some flawed logic there, he only became a bitter asshole because of what happened, because females used and abused him.
You say that being nice to get sex is creepy, but then you offer the author of this post relationships (and of course sex, a relationship without sex is not a “relationship” of the kind you were talking about when you said things like “marry me” or “i want to bone you for the next 15 years”) because he was nice and said what you want to hear, so what exactly is the difference? That he not indirectly stated that he want’s sex as a reward? Or in other words, that is Nice Guy facade is just more elaborate and well hidden so that you don’t see through it? Maybe he is of the same loser-type as the guy who wrote the rant but has just taken a different aproach by doing the opposite of what the Nice Guy Loner Jerk does, while his ultimate goals remain the same: Getting into a relationship and have sex.
You all feel relieved that you can point to the guys and say “You are the assholes” while you yourself make mistakes, totally disregard his desires and are assholes yourselves, if you follow the kind of logic that is prevailing in this discussion. For example, if you are “stalked” by a guy who wants a relationship with you, you not always give him clear signals that you will never engage in such things with him, and hope that he will realise it sooner or later, while he does not, because he is terribly in love with you (and even if he only wants sex, good lord, you all sound like you have never felt the need for sex when sex wasn’t available. Oh, but i forgot, if a girl wants to fuck she just has to ask pretty much anybody if she is relatively good looking, and even if she is not good looking she can still ask around and on the fifth try or so she will get what she wants while a guy who asks for sex is just a perverted desire-driven asshole. Oh wait, did that sound bitter? Damn, I must be one mean kind of Former Nice Guy, I should better try to learn to communicate, and really be nice, not so cynic, that will help me, ok ok, maybe i should state clearly what i want instead of being passive-aggressive (oh shit, that would be sex first, relationship later, then that is not an option, dammit, my fault for having not the same priorities that are required to get sex, wich would be: Don’t desire Sex at any time, isn’t that really fucked up?)).
TL;DR: There are always two sides to a story, and it DOES matter if you are in a relationship and can talk down to people who are not, or if you are part of the folks which are not in a relationship and try like crazy to get into one only to see all their efforts crumble to dust. A rich man can lightly say that money does not really matter in life, while the poor man will certainly say the opposite. So don’t be so fucking full of yourselves because you were lucky and others were not.
Have fun with it, everybody!
Last week’s pledge drive went very well, covering about 90% of my IP renewal cost, so I think it’s time for another requests post. What would you guys like to see? Standard caveats: no “I Should Write” requests, no requests for “more original comics” unless you’re willing to be or find an artist for me, and nothing about oysters. (I just don’t like oysters.)
So I just received a comment on the Star Trek: DS9 alignments post as follows:
You grabbed the number one google ranking for “DS9 character alignment” and Star Trek character alignment” from me.
This was followed, of course, by a link to said person’s webpage, which was presumably their page which previously had the number one Google ranking for those things. (Link has since been edited so it is no longer an active hyperlink.) Curious about their SEO desperation, I followed the link…
…and found my own damn alignment chart there.
This is why I watermark all my stuff now, even if I don’t always like the aesthetic thereof.
So once again it has come time for my yearly “spend the money to continue having hosting.” And honestly – I’m hoping that by this time next year I won’t have to hold out the hat for your spare change but instead be so flush that the money will just be a little bit of nothing, much in the way that other people purchase a pair of skis. But, right now, in the midst of paying down my not-insignificant student loans and having to lay out cash for malpractice insurance and Law Society dues, I am relatively cash-poor.
So I request of my readership: please do click that “donate” button. It makes my life a little bit easier, and you continue to get what I would humbly submit is entertaining content with exactly zero ads, and I can keep clicking “report as spam” on all those emails from “freelancers” asking to submit posts that would, just coincidentally, have links in them to sites where you can purchase things! (Or are possibly malware sites. I’m not sure which; I never check. I just report the emails as spam.) Because I like that this site never asks you to spend money. Except when I ask you to spend money, and I do so as rarely as possible.
So, after four years, over twenty-three hundred posts, over forty-four thousand comments (seriously, you people), twelve guestbloggers, sixty-three pages of my very own comic, at least five interviewers expressing concern over the content of my blog and how it might affect my work performance, and god knows how many hours of coming up with all of it, here we are.
I don’t plan on stopping any time soon.