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Saturday, January 20, 2007

a post of bits

Lots to write about as soon as I get my head above the current pile of mostly proofreading-and-copyediting. (If writing fiction is dessert, then copy-editing is eating all your vegetables. Blogging is snacking between meals. Yes, I'm still on diet*, why do you ask?)

In the meantime, a few odd tidbits...

Ever since catching a Radio 4 documentary last year (no longer available), I've become intrigued recently by Bert Williams, and have been buying lots of books about him and recordings of his, which meant that I discovered Archeophone Records (http://www.archeophone.com/index.php) -- an amazing resource for anyone interested in late Nineteenth and early Twentieth century music. (I wasn't, but I am now.) This includes Yearbooks -- the hits of each year. And listening to their 1922 CD I stumbled over the Mister Gallagher and Mister Shean act, which I'd known about (mostly through parodies, TV commercials, and an obscene version quoted in Gershon Legman's Rationale of the Dirty Joke) but never heard. Mister Shean was Groucho Marx's uncle, and a few clicks later I was watching Groucho Marx and Jackie Gleason doing their own Gallagher and Shean tribute on YouTube (it's at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tpl-JGLbwwQ). (I played once with the idea of doing a "Mister Vandemar and Mister Croup" song but it never went beyond the playing stage.)

Archeophone put up a recording of the month, with a little information about each act, at http://www.archeophone.com/features/recordings/index.php -- there's a lot to listen to.

John Crowley (an amazing writer and a lovely man) is putting up a reading list of books for writers , especially would be writers of Fantasy and SF, at his livejournal, http://crowleycrow.livejournal.com/. I've read about half the books on the list, and given that two of them are two of my favourite books in the world I'm looking forward to reading the rest. (This is the original request for a reading list -- http://crowleycrow.livejournal.com/38533.html -- and this is the result is at http://crowleycrow.livejournal.com/38862.html. This is, as he says to "shame them [his students] out of concocting another pseudo-medieval non-society peopled by folks like themselves (and a few dragons and vampires, also much like themselves). " I think it should apply to all writers...

Susan Henderson has a contest which has a) already been won and b) if you're coming there from here you'll guess the answer immediately. But it's at ... http://litpark.com/2007/01/19/contest-time/


* It's working just fine, thank you. I call it The Don't Eat So Bloody Much and Would It Kill You To Take A Walk Now And Again Diet.

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