ysabetwordsmith: (gold star)
Lego is releasing 5 new minifigs of NASA women.  Things I noticed: 1 has white hair, 1 is black, 3 out of 5 are wearing glasses, 4 out of 5 have short hair, and only 1 seems to be wearing lipstick.  Used to be, the only distinctions of feminine gender were the lipstick and ponytail features on minifigs.  Yay, progress!
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem was written outside the regular prompt calls, inspired by the diving incident storyline from [personal profile] dialecticdreamer and a comment from [personal profile] siliconshaman. It also fills the "scientist" square in my 12-1-16 card for the iPod Shuffle Music Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] ng_moonmoth. It belongs to the Aquariana thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
... with the successful launch of 104 satellites from a single rocket.  That's almost three times the previous record, 37 from Russia.  Cluster rockets are fantastic tools.  \o/

Star Gears

Feb. 5th, 2017 04:39 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Is it just me, or does this nebula really look like this timer piece we just built?  I mean, I've described the Universe as a clock before -- you wind it up, let it go, it winds down, you rewind it; Big Bang, Big Crunch -- but I wasn't expecting it to be this obvious.  I'm thinking of the two rubber bands, and thinking of entropy and syntropy, and now I'm imagining God leaning over this nebula and swearing because the laws of physics don't want to go in the holes quite right.  Not to mention the jumpgates in The Blueshift Troupers and how people argue over what powers them, like solar wind mills or subspace waterwheels, and it hadn't even occurred to me that we could be looking right at  some of the moving parts, and just never recognize them as technology. I never would've noticed this if I had not just been working on that part ten minutes ago.


Feb. 4th, 2017 05:30 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Currently in development: robot astronauts.

Now all we need are astronauts comfortable with bilocation and we can have "manned" missions using a distal body. Cyborgs could probably handle a distal body just fine. Look for people who are blinging up their prosthetics. Hell, look at quadriplegics who need a whole prosthetic body. I wonder if we could get Stephen Hawking to drive one of these things.

Think about all the other jobs this could open up for people with flimsy bodies.  Search-and-rescue.  Deep-sea work.  Nuclear reactor repair.

Terramagne probably has some of this in place already, since their robotics are a couple decades ahead of ours.
ysabetwordsmith: (moment of silence)
Astronaut Eugene Cernan has passed away. He was the last man to walk on the Moon.

"We leave as we came, and, God willing, we shall return, with peace and hope for all mankind." -- Cernan's closing words on leaving the moon at the end of Apollo 17

We haven't been back since, alas.  Perhaps he locked it.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem is spillover from the January 3, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] kelkyag and [personal profile] ng_moonmoth. It also fills the "ingenuity" square in my 10-4-16 card for the Games and Sports Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] ng_moonmoth. It belongs to the series An Army of One.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem came out of the July 7, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] chanter_greenie. It also fills the "quantum theory" square in my 3-16-15 card for the [community profile] genprompt_bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by EdorFaus and [livejournal.com profile] daisiesrockalot.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Jump gate showing diamond ring of light (blueshift)
This poem came out of the February 2016 [community profile] crowdfunding Creative Jam. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] siliconshaman. It also fills the "asexual / demisexual species" square in my 1-23-16 Platonic card for the Valentine's Day Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [livejournal.com profile] daisiesrockalot. It belongs to The Blueshift Troupers shared world.

Warning: This poem contains some intense topics. Highlight to read the warnings, some of which are spoilers. It features a botched first contact, intolerance of asexuality, sexual assault, and other challenges. If these are sensitive issues for you, please consider your tastes and headspace before reading onward.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
As people travel, they take their stories with them, and those stories change slowly over time.  The evolution of mythology thus parallels the paths of migration. 
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Our nearest celestial neighbor, the Centauri system, used to be extremely popular in science fiction.  As astronomers learned more about space, it didn't seem as promising.  Surprise!  Classic SF writers may have been right after all.  It turns out that Proxima Centauri has at least one planet which is likely to resemble Earth in some key aspects. 

Aaaaaand now I want to go there.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem is spillover from the August 2, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired and sponsored by Anthony Barrette.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 Scientists are using models to explore how Europa might support life.  I reeeaaallly want to go there.  :D
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (neutral)
The following poems from the April 19, 2016 Poetry Fishbowl are currently available. Poems may be sponsored via PayPal -- there's a permanent donation button on my LiveJournal profile page -- or you can write to me and discuss other methods.

There are still verses left in the linkback poems "The Tornado Blew Away," "Knitting into Community," and "The Texture of Our Relationships." Linking to this page will reveal new verses in whichever poem you request.

"As Is"
A social prompt inspired the free-verse poem "As Is." It's a look at a mixed family and the challenges that a neurotypical person faces moving into the Lacuna. Armelle is just generally having a hard time anyhow.
386 lines, Buy It Now = $193
[Available for posting after "New Wine in Old Bottles" has been sponsored and published.]

Armelle struggled to put together
a new life on Sargasso Base.

She scrounged up a dresser,
table and chairs for her room

"Flying in Freefall"
A Dreamwidth prompt inspired the free-verse poem "Flying in Freefall." A life support malfunction in a secret lab brings a scientist and her livestock to Supply Base Bounty 3D3N.
120 lines, Buy It Now = $60 SOLD

Router had understood the principle
of turning Supply Base Bounty 3D3N
into a farming station, but he had not
expected to receive livestock.

"Fortifications of the Future"
From this I got the free-verse poem "Fortifications of the Future." Backup finds some makeshift games, which inspire him to think about the position of the Lacuna between the Arms. Together with his crewmates, he works on new ideas to secure their future.
204 lines, Buy It Now = $102 SOLD

Sam the Gardener was busy
digging, digging, making dirt and
planting things in it, playing with
his pet worms, running plastic pipes
everywhere and punching holes
in them to hold more plants.

Backup found the whole process
boring, although he liked the salads.

"New Wine in Old Bottles"
This contributed to the poem "New Wine in Old Bottles." Bottleneck is surprised when his past catches up to him. He doesn't really know how to respond, and he's not all that good with emotions, but he tries anyhow.
172 lines, Buy It Now = $86

"You have two visitors coming,"
the Minotaur informed Bottleneck.
"I just received the news from
Specialist Miles Cernan
and the OCS-397."

"Uh ... I'm not expecting
any visitors," said Bottleneck.

"No Measure of Health"
This contributed to the poem "No Measure of Health." A ship full of refugees comes to the Lacuna, all different people with the same reason for leaving a home that no longer felt safe to them.
176 lines, Buy It Now = $88 SOLD

They arrived all at once,
in a lifeboat meant to hold
twenty people for a few hours
that had held eleven for weeks,
towed behind Short John's ship.

"Thinking River Thoughts"
A DW prompt inspired the free-verse poem "Thinking River Thoughts." Sam's long-distance friend sends him wild iris and videos from her home.
56 lines, Buy It Now = $20

"Through Repetition of Thought"
A Dreamwidth teaching prompt inspired the free-verse poem "Through Repetition of Thought." It explores both the challenges of having children on a not-childproofed ex-military starbase, and the strengths of neurovariant people.
128 lines, Buy It Now = $64 SOLD
[Will be posted after "New Wine in Old Bottles" has been sponsored and published.]

When Embry slipped away
from her parents for 2.5 minutes
and in that time somehow managed
to get an airlock halfway open,

Armelle had a panic attack
and three more people moved
out of the "kiddie corridor."

"To See the Air"
Further discussion with DW user Kyleri inspired the free-verse poem "To See the Air." Dr. Syden Caermichael feels uneasy after her close brush with life support failure in her lab. So Case makes her some wind chimes and mobiles to show that the air vents are still working.
106 lines, Buy It Now = $53

Dr. Syden Caermichael
was not as happy as she
had expected over the news
that her lab had been repaired.
ysabetwordsmith: Cats playing with goldfish (fishbowl)
The Poetry Fishbowl is now CLOSED. Thank you for your time and attention.

Starting now, the Poetry Fishbowl is open!  Today's theme is "An Army of One."  I will be checking this page periodically throughout the day. When people make suggestions, I'll pick some and weave them together into a poem ... and then another ... and so on. I'm hoping to get a lot of ideas and a lot of poems.

What Is a Poetry Fishbowl?

Writing is usually considered a solitary pursuit. One exception to this is a fascinating exercise called a "fishbowl." This has various forms, but all of them basically involve some kind of writing in public, usually with interaction between author and audience. A famous example is Harlan Ellison's series of "stories under glass" in which he sits in a bookstore window and writes a new story based on an idea that someone gives him. Writing classes sometimes include a version where students watch each other write, often with students calling out suggestions which are chalked up on the blackboard for those writing to use as inspiration.

In this online version of a Poetry Fishbowl, I begin by setting a theme; today's theme is "An Army of One." I invite people to suggest characters, settings, and other things relating to that theme. Then I use those prompts as inspiration for writing poems.

Cyberfunded Creativity

I'm practicing cyberfunded creativity. If you enjoy what I'm doing and want to see more of it, please feed the Bard. The following options are currently available:

1) Sponsor the Fishbowl -- Here is a PayPal button for donations. There is no specific requirement, but $1 is the minimum recommended size for PayPal transactions since they take a cut from every one. You can also donate via check or money order sent by postal mail. If you make a donation and tell me about it, I promise to use one of your prompts. Anonymous donations are perfectly welcome, just won't get that perk. General donations will be tallied, and at the end of the fishbowl I’ll post a list of eligible poems based on the total funding; then the audience can vote on which they want to see posted.

2) Swim, Fishie, Swim! -- A feature in conjunction with fishbowl sponsorship is this progress meter showing the amount donated.

3) Buy It Now! -- Gakked from various e-auction sites, this feature allows you to sponsor a specific poem. If you don't want to wait for some editor to buy and publish my poem so you can read it, well, now you don't have to. Sponsoring a poem means that I will immediately post it on my blog for everyone to see, with the name of the sponsor (or another dedicate) if you wish; plus you get a nonexclusive publication right, so you can post it on your own blog or elsewhere as long as you keep the credits intact. You'll need to tell me the title of the poem you want to sponsor. I'm basing the prices on length, and they're comparable to what I typically make selling poetry to magazines (semi-pro rates according to Duotrope's Digest).

0-10 lines: $5
11-25 lines: $10
26-40 lines: $15
41-60 lines: $20
Poems over 60 lines, or with very intricate structure, fall into custom pricing.

4) Commission a scrapbook page. I can render a chosen poem in hardcopy format, on colorful paper, using archival materials for background and any embellishments. This will be suitable for framing or for adding to a scrapbook. Commission details are here.  See latest photos of sample scrapbooked poems: "Sample Scrapbooked Poems 1-24-11"

5) Spread the word. Echo or link to this post on your LiveJournal, other blog, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Digg, StumbleUpon, or any other social network.  Useful Twitter hashtags include #poetryfishbowl and #promptcall.  Encourage people to come here and participate in the fishbowl.  If you have room for it, including your own prompt will give your readers an idea of what the prompts should look like; ideally, update later to include the thumbnail of the poem I write, and a link to the poem if it gets published.  If there is at least one new prompter or donor, I will post an extra freebie poem.

Additional Notes

1) I customarily post replies to prompt posts telling people which of their prompts I'm using, with a brief description of the resulting poem(s). If you want to know what's available, watch for those "thumbnails."

2) You don't have to pay me to see a poem based on a prompt that you gave me. I try to send copies of poems to people, mostly using the LJ message function.  (Anonymous prompters will miss this perk unless you give me your eddress.)  These are for-your-eyes-only, though, not for sharing.

3) Sponsors of the Poetry Fishbowl in general, or of specific poems, will gain access to an extra post in appreciation of their generosity.  While you're on the Donors list, you can view all of the custom-locked posts in that category.  Click the "donors" tag to read the archive of those.  I've also posted a list of other donor perks there.  I customarily leave donor names on the list for two months, so you'll get to see the perk-post from this month and next.

4) After the Poetry Fishbowl concludes, I will post a list of unsold poems and their prices, to make it easier for folks to see what they might want to sponsor.

Feed the Fish!
Now's your chance to participate in the creative process by posting ideas for me to write about. Today's theme is "An Army of One."  I'll be soliciting ideas for neurovariant people, neurotypical friends and allies, social engineers, veterans, QUILTBAG people, traders, AYES sapient starships, visionaries, alternative families, stimming, colonizing space, planning ahead, storytelling, identifying problems, solving problems, helping people, challenging assumptions, making discoveries, recycling/reusing things, gardening in space, peacemongering, building a new society, major communal outposts, small isolated outposts, libraries, community centers, green spaces, starships, the Sargasso derelict junkyard, Passions, neurovariant/neurotypical differences, acceptance and welcome, radical transformation, the master's tools and the master's house, teamwork, de-escalation, conflict resolution, alternative justice, space exploration, sustainability, hope, and poetic forms in particular. But anything is welcome, really. If you manage to recommend a form that I don't recognize, I will probably pounce on it and ask you for its rules. I do have The New Book of Forms by Lewis Turco which covers most common and many obscure forms.

I'll post at least one of the fishbowl poems here so you-all can enjoy it. Remember, you get an extra freebie poem if someone new posts a prompt or makes a donation.  The rest of the poems will go into my archive for magazine submission.


ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)

May 2017

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