RogerBW's Blog

More of Lovecraft's Lesser-Known Collaborations 30 October 2020 - 1 comment

Since my last post on this subject, more of the hidden collaborations of Howard Philips Lovecraft (1890-1937) have been uncovered. Our team of imaginary researchers has worked tirelessly to recover these first drafts, rendered into more commonplace form by Lovecraft's so-called "co-authors".

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The Demon and the City, Liz Williams 29 October 2020

2006 urban fantasy, second in the series set in Singapore Three. With Detective Inspector Chen on vacation, Seneschal Zhu Irzh, his demonic partner, must look into the matter of a murdered socialite…

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Perl Weekly Challenge 84: Reverse squares 28 October 2020

I’ve been doing the Perl Weekly Challenges. The latest involved reversing integers and a two-dimensional search. (Note that this is open until 1 November 2020.)

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The Dulwich Horror and Others, David Hambling 27 October 2020 - 1 comment

2015 collection of Lovecraftian horror stories mostly set in South London. vt Shadows from Norwood.

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Old Mars, George R.R. Martin and Gardner Dozois 26 October 2020

2013 collection of new SF stories set on pre-space-probe ideas of the planet Mars.

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Depths of Blue, Lise MacTague 25 October 2020

2015 SF, first of a trilogy. Torrin is an interstellar smuggler, planning to ship her high-tech weapons to anyone on the Fringe World of Haefen with a budget to buy them. Jak is a sniper, disguised as a man in a military that doesn't allow women, waiting for a chance at revenge on the man who killed her brother, but for now on a solo mission to kill the smuggler the other side is dealing with.

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An Ominous Announcement 24 October 2020 - 5 comments

The local council has issued a press release. Excuse me while I run round and round in small circles.

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Perl Weekly Challenge 83: Length and Inversion 23 October 2020 - 1 comment

I’ve been doing the Perl Weekly Challenges. The latest involved string manipulation and a numerical search. (Note that this is open until 25 October 2020.)

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Genesys Core Rulebook (part 5, GM toolkit and conclusions) 22 October 2020

The final major section of the book is the GM's toolkit.

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Marlow Tabletop and Board Games 19 October 2020 21 October 2020

This Meetup-based boardgames group remains on-line for the moment; as usual we got together on Jitsi and then played some games on BoardGameArena.

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Halfhead, Stuart MacBride 20 October 2020

2009 crime/SF. In future Glasgow, serious criminals are "halfheaded", lobotomised and their lower jaws removed, to work as simple labour and serve as an example to others. But, to nobody's surprise, that isn't much of a deterrent to some.

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A test harness for my Discourse plugin 19 October 2020

I have ended up maintaining a plugin for Discourse. As I got it, it had no tests. Fixing that was fun.

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No Time to Cry, James Oswald 18 October 2020

2018 contemporary thriller, first in a new series. DC Constance Fairchild goes to a meeting with an undercover officer, only to find he's been tortured and shot. And her superiors are determined to prove that she's the corrupt cop who did it.

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Genesys Core Rulebook (part 4, GM advice and settings) 17 October 2020

That's more or less the players' part of the book. The rest of it is advice to the GM.

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In the Courts of the Crimson Kings, S. M. Stirling 16 October 2020

2008 science fiction, second of the two books of Lords of Creation. The first Mars and Venus landers found breathable air and human life. Forty years later, Jeremy Wainman is on an archaeological expedition looking for a lost Martian city.

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Genesys Core Rulebook (part 3, combat and other tasks) 15 October 2020 - 4 comments

You now have a character. Now let's break it.

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Perl Weekly Challenge 82: Interleave Factors 14 October 2020 - 1 comment

I’ve been doing the Perl Weekly Challenges. The latest involved common factors and string searches. (Note that this is open until 12 October 2020.)

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Something Fresh, P. G. Wodehouse 13 October 2020

1915 comedy. For reasons too silly to go into, several of the guests at Blandings are out to steal a rare scarab… US vt Something New (with slight alterations).

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A tour of the United Kingdom with Flightgear 12 October 2020

I've now done a Flightgear-simulated tour at "every" airport in the United Kingdom.

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Genesys Core Rulebook (part 2, mechanics and character generation) 11 October 2020 - 3 comments

So given that universal resolution mechanic, what's the rest of the game about?

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Marlow Tabletop and Board Games 5 October 2020 10 October 2020

This Meetup-based boardgames group remains on-line for the moment; as usual we got together on Jitsi and then played some games on BoardGameArena.

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Genesys Core Rulebook (part 1, initial thoughts) 09 October 2020

This universal RPG system suffers from conflicting goals, but ends up producing a pleasantly fast-moving game.

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The Armor of Light, Melissa Scott and Lisa A. Barnett 08 October 2020

1988 historical fantasy. In 1595, Elizabeth has decided that James of Scotland shall be her heir. But he is beset by witches, and she sends her champion, Sir Philip Sidney, to aid him.

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Perl Weekly Challenge 81: Base Frequency 07 October 2020 - 1 comment

I’ve been doing the Perl Weekly Challenges. The latest involved substrings and word frequencies. (Note that this is open until 11 October 2020.)

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A Shilling for Candles, Josephine Tey 06 October 2020

1936 detective fiction; second of Tey's novels of Inspector Alan Grant. A film star's body washes up on a beach in Kent; it might have been an accidental drowning, but for a small piece of evidence.

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Shady Characters, Keith Houston 05 October 2020

2013 non-fiction; Houston looks into the history and evolution of a variety of punctuation marks.

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Boardgames in Isolation: September (part 2) 04 October 2020

More boardgames played from home.

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Maid, Stephanie Land 03 October 2020

2019 non-fiction, Stephanie Land's description of raising a child without a partner while working as a cleaner.

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YSDC Games Day 9 (ConVocation 2020) 02 October 2020

Ninth in this series of one-day conventions, which this year of course happened on-line.

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September 2020 Trailers 01 October 2020 - 2 comments

Some trailers I've seen recently, and my thoughts on them. (Links are to youtube. Opinions are thoroughly personal. Calibration: if you don't know by now…)

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