Stargate Monuments


Martha Wells

My Flying Lizard Circus

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Atlantis Dark

More Books, Articles, and Jack

Good weather news: it is supposed to rain like crazy this weekend! Bad weather news: we're going to a friend's wedding on Saturday when the bulk of the rain is due to fall. Fortunately, it's not being held outside. I've really been looking forward to it, since he's a friend who we've known since he was a tiny baby and he is marrying a great person.

Jack has not lost his fascination with the laptop screen. He wants to lay with his head on the keyboard and watch it, and bite my fingers when I'm typing, and bat at any moving pictures on the screen. I try to discourage this by using a spray bottle and screaming.


Shadowlands by Violette Malan is out, a sequel to The Mirror Prince
Prince Cassandra dispatches Stormwolf, formerly a Hound but cured by his prince's magic and restored to the Rider he once was, to the Shadowlands to call home the People who remain refugees there. But Stormwolf finds the Hounds of the Wild Hunt now prey upon the souls of the humans, draining them of the magic which is the very lifeblood of the People. With the help of Valory Martin, a mortal psychic, Stormwolf must find the magic needed to defeat the Hunt before it's too late. Violette has the first chapter on her web site here (look up in the upper right hand corner under "sneak peek")

The full table of contents of Chicks Unravel Time has been posted! My article is "Donna Noble Saves the Universe." The book is up for preorder and will be out in the first week or so of November.


No Evidence of Disease
A blogger describes his experience with a "friend" who faked cancer, just to get attention:

Being duped is humiliating. You backtrack and see how unconvincing the props and scenery look in the light of day. The storefronts turn out to have been cheap painted wood, the mountain landscape is just a flimsy canvas. But that feeling is normal. The lies only needed to be convincing in the moment, and their very audacity made them easy to sell.

Given a choice between thinking something is an odd coincidence, and deciding that your best friend's entire identity, down to the scar on her chest, has been constructed to deceive you; that she has gotten up every morning and shaved her head just to fuck with you, you are unlikely to choose door number two.

Smithsonian: The Great New England Vampire Panic
Two hundred years after the Salem witch trials, farmers became convinced that their relatives were returning from the grave to feed on the living

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A friend (girlfriend) of a housemate did that to the whole houseful of us when I was in grad school, pretended she had cancer and was undergoing chemo for the attention. I was suspicious from the beginning, in that way you are of behavior that twigs your instincts, but you don't say, because you don't question that kind of thing. It was bizarre, the whole experience. She actually let herself fall down a flight of stairs, supposedly sick with chemo, and obliged me to hold her in my arms at the bottom (she wasn't hurt) while she moaned.

Yes, they really work on the principle of the "big lie." Who would lie about something like that, something so easy to disprove? But being chronically ill is so easy to fake. Even when people fake it badly, get medical terms wrong, can't be specific, etc, you don't question them because the idea of someone telling that big a lie, for no real reason (that you can conceive of) is just so crazy.

And I think most people are naturally wary of someone who asks for money, but so many of the people who do this are going for the attention and belief. Any money or gifts they get is just a side benefit, it's the attention they really want.

I had a student that I was pretty sure had Munchausen a few years ago (lyme disease...multiple bladder infections...faked pregnancy). You want to believe people, because if you ignore someone who's sick, that makes you a jerk, right? But the stories just didn't add up. I went to discuss it privately with the school nurse--who could not, of course, give any sort of diagnosis--but agreed my guess might be right. (I'm pretty cynical naturally.)

Yes, I think this is way more common than most people think. It's just so hard to believe someone would really do this until it happens to you.

It's just waaaay harder to fool people with trust issues ;o)

Munchausen-by-Internet is not a fun time for the folks who get duped. Fandom tends to be really giving and welcoming. It makes us the perfect marks. Some really sick individuals just drift from fannish group to fannish group, starting over with the plausible (and implausible) tales of medical issues, abuse, financial woes, etc. each time until they exhaust one groups' resources and trust, there's always another community on the horizon.

Yes, it's horrible. One reason I linked to that article is the writer really gets across how much it hurts when the people who have been fooled start to realize the truth, how hard it is to make yourself accept it at first.

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