Don’t Be “That Guy/Girl” at Balticon, M’kay?

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Convention Attendance, Cool Links / Clicky Linky, Friends, No Whining, Too Long For Twitter

Balticon folks, please look over the Harassment Policy posted on the Baltimore Science Fiction Society site.

There have been issues in previous years, as most folks know. I like to think we all want to gather and have fun together with folks that genuinely share interests, but either alcohol or missed social cues can and have created issues in the past.

Sadly, not everyone realizes how their actions can be seen as harassment. Consider reading this over to ensure you don’t cause upset to your fellow con-goers AND/OR how to handle behavior you deem as harassment you see or experience.

Also, if you see someone giving cues that there are in need of “rescue” please consider giving a distraction and/or exit assist. If you are not comfortable, please summon assistance as instructed in the policy. (Yup, gonna make you click that link and read it. #CliffHanger

Of note:
Other people or their personal effects should not be touched–this includes hair, clothing, assistive devices, bags, and service animals–without an express invitation.

If physical contact is wished, express this verbally or with a friendly gesture, and do not proceed without a positive verbal or physical response.

Holding a hand out for a handshake and waiting for the other person to reciprocate is good example.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

After seeing hotel renovations last week, I say this can be a fantastic experience yet again as our community gathers together to share, learn, contribute and geek out with our dice out!

Hilarious to Me: Drunk History’s Second Season – NSFWoK!

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Cool Links / Clicky Linky, No Whining, Too Long For Twitter, TV

A few years ago, we came across Derek Waters’ series called, Drunk History, on the web.

It’s now in its HILARIOUS second season on Comedy Central. It’s lost a bit of the charm of the original, but have more than made up for it in other ways.

And after just watching a Daily Show interview with him, I’m happy to say, that he can at the very least, very convincingly play the humble and thoughtful guy.

 

Check it out, and here’s a link to my original posting from April 7, 201?.  It will hopefully explain WTF I’m talking about, lol.

 

Rik Mayall, RIP

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Cool Links / Clicky Linky, TV

RIP, Rik Mayall. I was just thinking of you this weekend and am saddened that this is the only way you hit national news in the US. My VERY favorite performance of yours is from the old Comic Strip show with Adrian Edmondson (with many excellent cameos) on a particular episode called, “More Bad News.” They were a satire of rock bands, like Spinal Tap. I laughed ’til I cried and then I rewound and watched it again, countless times on the VHS tape I recorded it onto in the late ’80s. Imagine my excitement when I finally was able to get a VHS copy of my very own. No DVD, sadly.

He played characters that were just themselves and didn’t make excuses, at a time when I didn’t know that was Allowed. And he was so funny! Even if the humor was always about being an ass, he always made me laugh. I’m still trying to learn some of those lessons, 30 years later.

And thanks for the unexpected hope. The Young Ones had a point of view I wasn’t getting while growing up in Central Texas. I could be ugly, stupid, fat, broke, annoying and still have friends. I didn’t have to be a cookie cutter “roper.” Praise Glob for that show and 120 Minutes and the hope they gave this weirdo. Central Texas was not teaching me this. Young Ones and 120 Minutes (and many bands) did. Love me or hate me, this is me.

Wish you’d gotten more roles, but I’m grateful for “Drop Dead Fred” which I was able to share and enjoy with my kids when they were younger.

Silver lining: I can share the fun easily with you guys, since I found “More Bad News” on Youtube, I’m sure it’ll be taken down, but the whole damn thing is here, which means I don’t have to dig out my VHS tape. Wewt! You can enjoy it yourselves, too. In addition to Rik Mayall and Adrian Edmondson, it has Nigel Planer, so there’s 3/4ths of the Young Ones cast, plus cameos by Jools Holland, Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy, French and Saunders, and oh, I dunno, whatever rock gods were found at Castle Donington and does a lovely job breaking down the record biz at the 15 minute mark. Oi.

Breathing Underwater by Metric

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Cool Links / Clicky Linky, Hauntings, Music

Another soul-touching song from Metric with the links and lyrics for their song, “Breathing Underwater.”  This specific song is one of the reasons I fell so hard for Metric years ago when we first started seeking their other tunes. It speaks to me and brings me great peace and sanity. ‘Nuff said, other than I’m adding the Amazon link to allow for listening and possible purchase.

Hear and/or Buy it at Amazon

See the official Metric video, live footage

Lyrics
(from http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/metric/breathingunderwater.html)

“Breathing Underwater”
by Metric 

I’m the blade
You’re the knife
I’m the weight
You’re the kite
They were right when they said
We were breathing underwater
Out of place all the time
In a world that wasn’t mine to takeI’ll wait
Is this my life?
Ahhh
Am I breathing underwater?
Is this my life?
Ahhh
Am I breathing underwater?I’m the blade
You’re the knife
I’m the weight
You’re the kite
They were right when they said we should never meet our heroes
When they bowed at their feet, in the end it wasn’t me

Is this my life?
Ahhh
Am I breathing underwater?
Is this my life?
Ahhh
Am I breathing underwater?

Nights are days
We’ll beat a path through the mirrored maze
I can see the end
But it hasn’t happened yet
I can see the end
But it hasn’t happened yet

Is this my life?
Ahhh
Am I breathing underwater?
Is this my life?
Ahhh
Am I breathing underwater?

Am I breathing underwater? [x2]

(Writer(s): Emily Haines, James Shaw

Copyright: Chrysalis Music Ltd.)


Couple of Thoughts This Halloween

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Cool Links / Clicky Linky, Fibromyalgia, Games, Health, Too Long For Twitter

 

First thought:

I again surveyed my blog land, and I have about 60 draft pieces that I’m trying to edit to post. With my neurological and physical health issues, I struggle immensely to get the wording right before a migraine hits or dizziness/nausea forces me to leave the computer screen.

My goal will be to post at least one a week and CONSIDER YOURSELF WARNED:

  • I am lowering my self-editing in order to get the thoughts out before I lose them. This blog has turned into more of an online journal than originally intended;
  • I need to keep posting to the outside world to stop feeling so isolated from it. Personal in nature and likely emo at times;
  • There will likely be multiple and unrelated topics within one post. I ache for brevity;
  • If you’ve not had a comment approved here before, I have to Allow it to be visible on my page. I don’t gather lists or info to sell or use either nefariously or for the Greater Good. (Morally and also, “Rawr!”);
  • My site, my rules.

Second thought, which I also posted in Twitter and Facebook:

Dunno where, but I may do an chat as a movie/game lover w/limiting health issues. Do Creators even realize when they deny their loyal fans?

I’m planning on something super short and solo, since I can’t wrangle moderating the discussion and/or Google+ Hangout, which is where I’d do it.

On this subject, please direct responses to me at VivMuse@gmail.com, as my hope is to maintain privacy and no spoilers for what the episode may contain. I’ll likely include your suggestions/thoughts/experiences.

I’m really just wanting to get the word out there, since I’ve only seen one Creator in my social media circles offer up something with folks with vision and other accessibility limitations in mind. I find myself bringing it up (likely too often) on SpecFicMedia.com Presents: Consumption ‘Cast, which is a weekly attempt to join hubby Chooch and friends P.G. Holyfield and Christiana Ellis. Last night it occurred to me that Creators, especially of visual mediums, might like a few experiences to help widen their audience of prospective future fans.

(If I get my IT guy in to help with the running of the show, I’ll consider guests, too and other than those in my dream cast, responses VIA EMAIL will be first considered, if and when I do this project.)

Related thought:

The Creator thinking outside of the box by designing a game with Accessibility in mind is the very talented musician and game designer, Russell Collins. His successful Kickstarter for his game, “Tears of a Machine.

I backed it and I’m hoping to do a review after I play with some friends (possibly recorded for posting). I’m so very excited to try it, as J.R. Blackwell and Jennifer Rogers are also a part of the project and I’ve LONG been fans of theirs. Check it out!

Third thought:

 Happy Halloween!

May your fun be safe but skurrrry! Our Housies are all sick/just getting better, so healing vibes, prayers, or sacrificial meatballs to the SMitS would be greatly appreciated. It’s a super fun night in our home, and I’d hate  for our Wee Housies to miss out on any planned fun.

Wee Housies' Halloween excitement = each of my departures via garage until it comes down, since it is now the perfect hiding spot for real spiders.
Related Thought:

I’m linking to a segment on The Daily Show with a fave new comedic actress of mine Kristen Schaal. I loved her on Wilfred and 30 Rock, AND she does/did voice work for many of my fave animated movies/TV shows, like Gravity Falls (voice of Mabel, my spirit animal) and Adventure Time.

In the segment I link to (WARNING: NSFW or with kids in the room unless you want to spend some time explaining the whats and whys of a vagina costume.), she chimes in on the annual sexy-female Halloween costume debate and presents THE best sexual female costume EVAR. It went up for auction later to benefit a charity, so if you just want to see the picture and skip the interview you can do so by clicky THIS linky.

Yes, I wanted to own it. No, I wouldn’t have ever worn it out in public, tempting as it would be…

Fourth thought: 

If I am able to type coherently tomorrow, you’ll learn one of the reasons why 2013 is Lucky ’13 for me.

 

Cover Reveal for Maven by S.A. Huchton

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Books, Cool Links / Clicky Linky, Friends


Maven (The Endure Series, Book One), by S.A. Huchton
Genre: Science Fiction Romance (New Adult)
Release Date: June 3rd, 2013

How far would you go for love?

Since losing her parents at 14, young prodigy Dr. Lydia Ashley has focused on one thing: an appointment on the Deep Water Research Command Endure. Now 21, she’s about to realize that dream, but nothing is how she imagined it would be. Her transitional sponsor forgets her, her new lab is in complete chaos, and, as if that weren’t enough, she’s about to discover something so horrific it could potentially destroy all life on the planet. 

Daniel Brewer, a noted playboy and genius in his own right, may be exactly what she needs… Or he may make everything worse.

Has she finally found a puzzle she can’t solve?

Maven, by S.A. Huchton. Available on June 3rd, 2013

If you’re wondering why I’m taking part in a cover reveal for a SciFi Romance, blame the author, S.A. (Starla) Huchton. She is an award winning author, award nominated podcaster, graphic artist, vocalist, book designer and friend. Over the years, I have been many times impressed by her incredible talent, her strong female voice as a creator, her incredible energy and tireless work ethic.

So, while not my usual genre, I’m greatly looking forward to reading Maven, just to see what Ms. Huchton can enchant me with this time.

All you get today is the cover, but the book will be available on June 3rd, 2013.

Links:
Twitter: @riznphnx
MAVEN on Goodreads
S.A. (Starla) Huchton’s Home Page
Designed by Starla Website
S.A. Huchton’s Facebook Author Page

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
My introduction to Ms. Huchton’s work:

I can’t recall if I met Ms. Huchton before or after listening to her podcast novel, The Dreamer’s Thread. But I do remember how she lured me in to listening: Cheyenne Wright. He was one of the voices she assembled for the audio production. I “met” Cheyenne through Twitter and my old podcast, The City of Heroes Podcast. Cheyenne was also a player of the superhero MMORPG, and we discovered that we also share birthdays. His voice is rich and powerful and I was curious to hear what he had lent it to. No slouch himself, Cheyenne has won no less than three Hugo Awards for his work on the web comic/graphic novels/novels over at Girl Genius.

Pretty quickly, I fell in love with the world Ms. Huchton created in The Dreamer’s Thread, characters and story. Yes, I of course loved Cheyenne’s contribution, but the story and imagery held me enraptured. I devoured it, and still recommend it to any that are interested in fantasy.

What Starla doesn’t know is that back in my 4-days-a-week running days, I would take a longer route home because I didn’t want to stop listening to her podiobook, The Dreamer’s Thread. (Yay, extra calorie burn!) And in recent months, the images Ms. Huchton brought to mind in The Dreamer’s Thread have helped me on my current quest: finding silver linings, regardless how dark the circumstances. I have even been using her descriptions of finding the “thread” in one of my guided meditations (helpful with my Health Blah related stress management).

Many thanks to Ms. Huchton for her literary and personal contributions to my life and for all she brings to the world.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Author Bio:

Starla Huchton released her first novel, The Dreamer’s Thread, as a full cast podcast production beginning in August 2009. Her first foray went on to become a double-nominee and finalist for the 2010 Parsec Awards. Since her debut, Starla’s voice has appeared in other podcasts including The Dunesteef Audio Fiction Magazine, The Drabblecast, and Erotica a la Carte. She is also a voice talent for Darkfire Productions, and narrates several of their projects, including The Emperor’s Edge series, This Path We Share, and others. Her writing has appeared in the Erotica a la Carte podcast, a short story for The Gearheart, and an episode of the Tales from the Archives podcast (the companion to Tee Morris and Philippa Balantine’s Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences series), which garnered her a second finalist badge from the 2012 Parsec Awards. Her second novel, a Steampunk adventure entitled Master of Myth, was the first place winner in the Fantasy/Science Fiction category of The Sandy Writing Contest held annually by the Crested Butte Writers Conference. Maven is her third completed novel and the first in a planned series of four.

After completing her degree in Graphic Arts at Monterey Peninsula College, Starla opened up shop as a freelance graphic designer focusing on creating beautiful book covers for independent authors publishers. She currently lives in Virginia where she trains her three Minions and military husband.

A Few Solid Nuggets / Fave Links

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Cool Links / Clicky Linky, Music, TV

  • 515b1a759554d


  • ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Queen’s Don’t Stop Me Now vid

  • Shaun of the Dead is on while I fold laundry. Queen’s Don’t Stop Me Now is featured during a zombie fight, and as always when I hear this song, I kinda lose my mind. I really love it. A quick search led to the vid below, by JRescalvo. The lyrics are shown along with some nifty representations of the late Mr. Mercury, but the images freeze completely around the 1:30 minute mark while the song plays on. It’s far more interesting than the lyric-only vids and has none of the sad stuff, unlike when watching videos of Queen before Freddie Mercury passed away. Twenty-something years ago and it still feels like too soon…

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

  • School of Thrones

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

  • It’s okay to not like things…
    ‘Nuff said?

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

  • Grownups by Randall Munroe
    I‘m a long time fan of the web comic and this is my second favorite strip of his, which is saying a lot. I have a few dozen favorites bookmarked, but this one speaks to the life I tried to embrace four years ago when we found ourselves in an  empty nest. I can’t recommend the web comic enough, but at this time, there are over 1,200 strips posted. There’s a handy search bar if you prefer to pop in a keyphrase or word. I recommend you also hover you mouse over the strip, since hides further awesome in the “hover text,” which I replicated here, just for you!

 

RIP, Bryan

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Cool Links / Clicky Linky, Hauntings, Too Long For Twitter

I found out earlier today that a friend from my younger days killed himself on Monday. I still can’t wrap my head ’round it.
Many tears have been shed.
Confusion voiced, to an unfortunate and extremely sweet friend that I stumbled into immediately after receiving the news.
Guilt over being a Debbie Downer on that friend’s evening.
Decision to not wallow, and to celebrate life instead, in Bryan’s honor.
Shame over not reaching out after hearing through the grapevine that his mom passed away last year.
Rage over the waste of confused yet kind person with great musical talent.
Guilt over causing my extremely hard-working husband to delay watching the Walking Dead, out of respect for my raw feelings.
More tears, more rage and a few impassioned proclamations, including one to climb out of sadness and celebrate, again.
Happiness while briefly connecting with a far away beloved for a silly video chat and much giggling.
Guilt over pushing sadness to the side.

And now, just puffy eyes and a simple plea remain, as clichè as it is:

If you are considering harming yourself, don’t. You are not alone. There are resources available to help you. Please reach out to any of the countless suicide prevention charities or local services available to you.

If you know someone may be contemplating harming themselves or someone else, please try and get them help. You cannot “rescue” anyone, only they can. Don’t fool yourself, you are not in control. They are. But you may be able to help them get on the path out of the darkness. And you aren’t alone. Those same organizations will help you get help for your friend. You can Google it for fresh results, but below are a few from my search.

And if you have no one that you feel is in need but still want to help, please consider donating to charities that help those that find themselves unable to cope. 

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention

Take Five to Save Lives

Veterans Crisis Line

I hope you found the peace you were seeking, Bryan.
*blows a kiss*

2012 Conventions

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Chooch, Convention, Cool Links / Clicky Linky, Too Long For Twitter, Uncategorized

Two things I want to announce on the subject of conventions:

My planned conventions:

Chooch and I will attend Balticon, only one week away, at the Hunt Valley Marriott in Maryland. I am shocked and gratified that this will be my 5th in attendance and 4th as a panelist!

At this point, I’ve not received my official schedule, but as of now I know that I am scheduled to be at:

  • Friday’s Meet and Greet
  • Saturday at 8 pm (I believe) in the Derby A Live Recording of SpecFicMedia.com Presents – Beyond the Wall: A Game of Thrones podcast. Come join our entire ‘cast cast as we explore the HBO series “Game of Thrones” as well as the book series. We vigilantly try to avoid spoilers, but either the cast or the audience may drop one or two. Based on our recordings to date, expect more F-bombs being dropped than spoilers. *It is known.*
  • Sunday at 10 pm in the Chase, I will be joining authors Barbara Friend Ish and P.G. Holyfield as we do readings from our works. Nothing makes me more nervous than a reading, but I hope to do it up right for my breast cancer anthology, with a tentative July release date.
  • When feeling up to it, my standard meeting points are the foyer, the bar, the courtyard or the Dealer’s Room.  Is it true there is no

I will be attending Philly Comic-Con, June 2 and will remain in Philly until the 4th for a private celebration. At this point, it appears that work obligations make keep Chooch away for this one.

We hope to make the trek to Dragon*Con for Labor Day weekend, but we will not know until closer to September if we will be able to attend or not.

TuacaCon, hosted by P.G. Holyfield and presented by SpecFicMedia.com is a virtual convention with writers, artists, musicians and performers giving their all with no travel costs! The date has yet to be determined, but the last two years was great fun and free! It is rumored that it may occur in Northern Virginia this year, and have even more folks in the live audience than ever before!

Also, if we meet at Balticon, Philly Comic-Con, Dragon*Con and/or TuacaCon, please know that for many possible reasons that I am sometimes easily confused or overwhelmed, hopefully due to one or all of my Health Blahs** or treatments. Please do not take offense if you get a negative vibe from me, in nearly all cases I can assure you that it is not you. It’s me. I am posting this here in case I have trouble verbalizing or am unaware of the issue. I don’t want a fuss made, I just want to avoid causing any misunderstandings.

Otherwise, I’m shy but say hi if you recognize me. Or leave a comment, @ me on Twitter (@VividMuse) or whatevs to let me know if you will be at any of these and maybe we can meet up!

~~~~~~~~

**Health Blahs – my term for my small collection of non-life threatening, yet problematic maladies.

Balticon 45 Schedule

Author: Vivid Muse  //  Category: Convention, Convention Attendance, Cool Links / Clicky Linky, Podcast

The schedule is not in its final form yet, but here is my schedule as it stands right now.

Note: ALL of my events are on Sunday!

Noon in the Chesapeake ~ Paulette Jaxton’s book launch for The Empress Sword
Recently published by Dragon Moon Press, I’ll be helping Paulette serve up tasty nomz inspired by the book and there will be a reading from the book by Nathan Lowell!

6PM in the Chesapeake – Girls’ Rules Live! ~ Women in the Gaming World
I’ll be joined by Laura Burns, Christiana Ellis, M.A. in PA, and Jett Micheyl. I’m also hoping for a special guest!
It’s not just Felicia Day having fun in the diverse world of gaming, it’s women from all walks of life. Join this all-female panel discuss their experiences after years of gameplay. We’ll discuss all manner of gaming, as this panel reveals what it’s really like when boy discovers that “girl” doesn’t always mean Guy In Real Life.

7 PM in the Chase (lower level) ~ Reading from my Mom’s short story, “Grandma.”
This story is the inspiration and centerpiece for a (Breast) Cancer Anthology I’ll be publishing in time for her birthday in 2012. I’ll be requesting submissions for written works and artwork for the collection and will be paying for accepted works. All proceeds from the book will go to established cancer charities.

9 PM in the Chesapeake – Into the Blender Live: Take My Geek Card (I Dare You!)
Guests include: P.G. Holyfield, Marc Bailey and Rich Sigfrit
This time we’re taking on a touchy subject: There are countless arenas of geek affection, but some seem near universal: movies, television, and books. Whether it be Star Wars or Firefly; Lord of the Rings, or Buffy; Gaiman or Pratchet – there are things you are SUPPOSED to love as a geek. Well, we don’t love them all and I bet you don’t either! Come compare your likes and dislikes with an assorted panel of lovers and haters of every genre.

10 PM in the Chesapeake ~ Geek Parenting in New Media
Our panel of geek parents chime in with their thoughts on raising young geeks. What is the right age to show the kids Star Wars? Do you show them all 6 or only the good ones. What websites are good and safe for kids at what age? How do you teach your kids about Internet privacy? How do you prepare them for “Greifers” on gaming systems? When is it OK for them to use their real name?

I’ll then be attending the remainder of the Time Traveler’s Ball, hosted by Christiana Ellis in the Garden Room!

And if you are in need of promotional buttons NOW is the time to order them! There is no delivery charge for buttons delivered at Balticon. I will be taking my equipment to Balticon, but will have to charge a higher rate for any I craft while at the con due to time constraints. For information, check out my site, VividMuseCreations.com.

Chooch and I came up with this little helper to expand your social media dynasty ~ fully customizable w/your QRCode, $2 if ordered by noon Wednesday, $5 if made at Balticon. Viv@VividMuseCreations.com