Last month I gave a talk at the Aether Salon in New Babbage, a virtual steampunk city in Second Life. There was a record crowd of avatars representing published writers, hopeful writers, and other interested folk. The transcript, along with the graphics from my slide show presentation (yes you can run a slide show in a virtual setting) has been posted. If you’d like to learn more about publishing, perhaps this will be of help. I had a lot of fun. Continue reading “Æther Salon: Publishing Transcript”
Seeing as how I’m on vacation this week, I thought I’d let Ceejay take a bit of a virtual jaunt in Second Life. So, she got out her Sub-Etha Sens-O-Matic device and hitched a lift on a passing spaceship. Eventually she was dropped off at Hastromil – The Big Bang Burger Bar, a rather spectacular place built by a very hoopy frood, Parker Bigboots. She took along her camera, too. Click any picture to embiggen it. Click it again and it will probably get frighteningly big.
First things first. She had to find a towel. Luckily, Parker had a Free Towel display hidden conveniently in the back of a very dark closet.
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy has a few things to say on the subject of towels. A towel, it says, is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitch hiker can have. Partly it has great practical value — you can wrap it around you for warmth as you bound across the cold moons of Jaglan Beta; you can lie on it on the brilliant marble‐sanded beaches of Santraginus V, inhaling the heady sea vapours; you can sleep under it beneath the stars which shine so redly on the desert world of Kakrafoon; use it to sail a mini raft down the slow heavy river Moth; wet it for use in hand‐to‐hand‐combat; wrap it round your head to ward off noxious fumes or to avoid the gaze of the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal (a mindbogglingly stupid animal, it assumes that if you can’t see it, it can’t see you — daft as a bush, but very ravenous); you can wave your towel in emergencies as a distress signal, and of course dry yourself off with it if it still seems to be clean enough.
She bumped into (literally) a rather friendly and floopy group of mattresses.
No one really knows what mattresses are meant to gain from their lives either. They are large, friendly, pocket-sprung creatures which live quiet private lives in the marshes of Squornshellous Zeta. Many of them get caught, slaughtered, dried out, shipped out and slept on. None of them seem to mind and all of them are called Zem.– Hitchhiker Wiki
Not far off, Deep Thought was busily running calculations. She thought to ask it a question, but decided against it. That didn’t go so well the first time around.
“For seven and a half million years, Deep Thought computed and calculated, and in the end announced that the answer was in fact 42- and so another, even bigger, computer had to be built to find out what the actual question was.”
As the day rolled on, she started getting understandably hungry. What luck! The Big Bang Burger Bar was open for business!
Refreshed, invigorated, and possibly drunk, bowling seemed a good idea. Ironically, Ceejay’s top score was 42.
Not knowing where to go next, Ceejay decided to pop into the Total Perspective Vortex to try to get her bearings, or maybe a sense of proportion, but probably not that. But there might be fairy cake for dessert.
“For when you are put into the Vortex you are given just one momentary glimpse of the entire unimaginable infinity of creation, and somewhere in it a tiny little marker, a microscopic dot on a microscopic dot, which says “You are here.”
“There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovers exactly what the Universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable.”
Kimika Ying first introduced us to her dream, brought alive in virtual reality, thusly:
“Space,” it says, “is big. Really big. You just won’t believe how vastly, hugely, mindbogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it’s a long way down the road to the chemist’s, but that’s just peanuts to space…” – Douglas Adams
In November and December of 2013, the Linden Endowment for the Arts* granted Kimika a sim on which to bring her vision to life. Her walking tour of the solar system, set in a natural-feeling island park, created an opportunity for a fun and educational romp. I enjoyed the tour quite a number of times, mostly in the company of friends. While the exhibit is now gone, the good memories linger.
But perhaps you missed it – or just want to remember. Now, you can stretch out beneath the stars and enjoy a small sampling of Oceania Planetary Park, at the Mary Read-ing Room, adjacent to the Mary Read Stealing er I mean Lending Library (yes that is the library’s full name. As the grid’s only pirate library, I think the name suits.)
You’ll need to wear climbing shoes for your visit. The Oceania exhibit is on the topmost floor of the reading room, on purpose. You’ll be closer to the stars and planets that way. Follow the reading room’s stairs and ladders ever upwards. Your reward will be a cloud-soft sofa to sink into, where you can relax and enjoy your experience. I recommend setting your viewer to midnight and finding a comfortable pose on the couch or pouf. Look around the wooden deck for a book. It contains all the original notes from the LEA exhibit, which were embedded in information posts along the trails.
The slide show exhibit is filled with photographs taken by Erehwon Yoshikawa. Poke the arrows under the photographs to move the picture slides forward or backward.
There’s a wee sparkly-thing perched on the railing. Feel free to take a copy of “Starry Starry Light” as a memento of your visit.
Oceania Planetary Park
Kimika’s project blog, including video tours, pictures,
and Kimika’s thoughts on the project.
Sway’s [Cloud 9] Sofa with Star Pillows and Star Pouf
Book of Shadows (filled with exhibit note cards)
Arcana Antiques and Oddities
*The Linden Endowment for the Arts is an official Linden Community Partnership program whose purpose is to help new artists, cultivate art in SL, and foster creativity, innovation, and collaboration within the art community.
What’s the best part of Thanksgiving? No, not the football. Cog no, not the football.
It’s the next day, and the day after that, and the day after that! It’s all those LEFTOVERS! This year, Armada’s Scoundrel Fleet has decided to skip all the hard work of cooking a Thanksgiving feast and will be jumping DIRECTLY to the leftovers.
If you’d like to enjoy leftovers with the Scoundrel Fleet, come on by after the big day, anytime from November 29th through December 1st. We’ll have plank tables out at the “To Hull and Back” bar at Fleet Headquarters, situated on scenic Scarlet Bay in the Blake Sea.
You might even find a plate of your OWN leftovers, iffin you aren’t in the habit of locking your windows at night.
ALSO! Look for Kimika Ying’s magnificent trebuchet, free gifts, a walking treasure tour of the island and who knows what else!
*ALERT!!* Sunday at 10am slt, the Scoundrel Fleet will be picking the tables clean. If you want to fight them for the last drumstick, come on by.
November 29th through December 1st, 2013
To Hull and Back Bar, Scoundrel Fleet HQ, Scarlet Bay, Blake Sea
Come by anytime! Enjoy a snack, have some fun, get a gift!
Mark your calendars now! Join us in Second Life for a rousing discussion of a fine new novel which features pirates and food! Pick up yer copy of “Cinnamon and Gunpowder” by Eli Brown, just published on June 4, 2013, and get ta reading, when yer not pillaging or swabbing the decks.
The discussion will be held on Sunday, October 20th, 2013, 3:00-4:30pm slt at the Mary Read Stealing, er I mean Lending Library, on the Scoundrel Fleet’s island in Blake Sea. We will meet at the Mary Read-ing Room, next to the library.
“Cinnamon and Gunpowder” was featured on Indie Bound (Support Indie Books! Yar!)
“A swashbuckling story is always fun, especially when it includes a gourmet chef on board. Mad Hannah Mabbot, tall, red-headed pirate kidnaps a Lord’s chef, Owen Wedgewood, and tells him he must cook for her once a week. Highly entertaining in spite of the cruel methods of the day and the suffering caused by the Opium smuggling between China and England, which Hannah is determined to stop. A supporting cast of characters that will ‘shiver your timbers’ and Owen’s weekly meals for Hannah are an absolute riot – Owen has little in the way of ingredients and his kitchen, or galley, is minuscule and lacking in everything needed to cook gourmet meals. Read this and learn who Mr. Apples, Joshua, and The Brass Fox are and how they play a role in this wonderfully thrilling story of pirates on the high seas and in the kitchen! Exciting and a true delight.”
As part of the Swashbucklers for Life events last weekend, the Scoundrel Fleet sponsored a discussion near the Scoundrel Headquarters, at the Mary Read Library’s “Read-ing Room”
Although piracy was almost wiped out during the age of sail, the newest advances in technology of the late 1800′s have allowed men of fortune to resume the noble trade of the seas. Commander Vernden Jervil, formerly of Armada Breakaway and now shipwrecked retired in the Blake Sea, leads us in an hour of discussion about advances in steampunk technology that have affected the pirate trade allowing our time honored profession to thrive on the land, sea and air.
Commander Vernden Jervil did the research and led the discussion, which was fun and lively and too often included talk of bats. 🙂
First up is a gallery of photos taken at the event – I hurried, and will finish annotating them soon. Feel free to offer corrections or additions to the names of the attendees!
Beyond the photo gallery is a full transcript of the discussion, for your enlightenment and consternation.
As part of the full weekend of Swashbucklers for Life events, you are cordially invited to join the Scoundrel Fleet at the Mary Read Pirate Library in the Blake Sea, on Sunday, June 30th, 2013, from 9:30 to 10:30am SLT.
Steampunk Piracy Discussion
Moving Piracy to the Year 1890
Although piracy was almost wiped out during the age of sail, the newest advances in technology of the late 1800’s have allowed men of fortune to resume the noble trade of the seas.
Commander Vernden Jervil, formerly of Armada Breakaway and now shipwrecked retired in the Blake Sea, leads us in an hour of discussion about advances in steampunk technology that have affected the pirate trade allowing our time honored profession to thrive on the land, sea and air.
The last of his crew, he was known as Gut Spiller John. He was hanged for piracy a month ago, and surely has taken the secret of Black Finger’s treasure to the grave… or has he?
He was the first mate, and he was the worst of them. Some say he was even worse than Black Finger himself… He just liked the killing, he loved to slice a sailors belly open and leave him to die slow. Some say that’s why he was the one that Black Finger entrusted with the location of the treasure, because he didn’t care about stealing it for himself…
The Armada Scoundrel Fleet
is proud to present
THE STEAM PIRATES DERBY
Saturday, June 29th, 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm
As part of Swashbucklers for Life, a weekend of events to support Relay for Life, the SL effort to raise funds for the American Cancer Society to FIGHT CANCER! Donations to ASF Scoundrels for Life are encouraged.
What’s a pirate like most? Treasure and Glory, that’s what! The ASF Steam Pirates Derby is an event that will test ALL your pirate skills in a Dash for Treasure! Think you have the skills to be the baddest of them all? Well, here’s your chance to prove it!!
The Derby consists of a race in a rickety steam powered ship, following a map to the TREASURE! It’s buried on an island, you see, and you need to go claim it. But that’s just the beginning! The other pirates will be gunning for your ship, and for YOU! There may be unforeseen hazards along the way.
But you won’t be left defenseless – donning a special HUD will supply you with a compass and weapons, as well as a health meter. You may find upgrades along the way!
ALL you need to do is work your way through the clues and be the first back to Scoundrel HQ with the treasure!! You may take the chance to slow the competition by shooting their ship, or temporarily killing them. Oh, and you must SURVIVE the attempt…