First, I want to say how delighted i am that there is a majority of Irish people who are willing to allow others to live their lives and get married.
However, there seems to be a narrative that this is the way thing should be done; That a vote of all people should be given in order to allow Equal Marriage in other countries. I do not believe that this is the best way of going forward.
In Ireland, there had over many years, been various court decisions that interpreted the Irish Constitution to effectively mean that marriage was between a Man and a Woman. This meant that any law that allowed for Equal Marriage may have faced, and lost, a constitutional challenge. This is why we needed a referendum.
This however does not mean that this was a good option. What happened was that we let a majority decide the rights of the minority; this is not a good thing. The rights of the minority should never be something the majority can decide, People have rights and they should not be at the mercy of other people.
So I can understand that people may want the whole democratic process of letting the people decide might be attractive; it however is something that is problematic.
I recently listened to the first two books of this series on Audio book. And i am in truth blown away by the level of mastery shown within the books.
The Stormlight Archives is a series from Brandon Sanderson, whose other work i have enjoyed. If you have not read any of his work, i recomend that you start with something simple like the Final Empire, or maybe Elantris. Both are excellent books, Elantris suffers from author trying to be clever but makes up for that by been a single volume Fantasy novel.
The Storm Light Archive is, I think, going to be Brandon's Masterwork, the piece of work that will gain him the right to call himself a master in the field of fantasy. I know some already consider him that, and i am probably one of them, however the quality of the first two books will make it difficult to deny him, if he can keep that quality up for all of the books.
I am not going to go into deep detail, as this is beyond the scope of my ability, however what struck me most about the books as i listened, as little bits were revealed, was the depth of the world around the characters. This isn't a simple oh look at these three or four countries that make up the world. While we are focused on one culture, we see hints and mentions of so many other places and culture that are going to add to the world.
If you are a fantasy reader, i do recomend that you consider adding this series to your list. Though warning, it is a slow go for this, and i suspect it will be at best one book every two years for the series, which is apparently ten books long. So if you want to wait i do understand. Go read the Mistborn Triology's instead!
So I only got to see this on Sunday when I go back from Russia, and I had a few thoughts.
Am going to avoid a lot of things, but will talk one thing I liked and one I did not( Spoilers and all thatCollapse )
I know there is a lot more to talk about, and there are some real issues, but well these are just some minor thoughts from me!
I have missed this place!
I was never much of a blogger, it has been nearly 3 years since my last post, and what I loved about LJ was the community that existed.
It was a place I could catch up with friends, however Facebook and Twitter took over those roles, and so I stopped using this site.
However, LJ does things simply that others never did, like making posts visible to only select groups or allowing each post to have a separate avatar.
So much of the fiction I wrote when last I was writing fiction is here.
Hopefully it will not be as long until my next post.
So in what is now becoming tradition i come to live journal to talk about Octocon from the con runners perspective. This is mainly in an attempt to have some transparency going on from our side to people who are interested in Irish Fandom and Octocon.
I have done this twice before, first just after the 2010
event and last year after 2011
.( Cut for the disinterestedCollapse )
In 2010 i committed to be chair till at least 2012.
Looking around there is still a lot i want to get done, and so i am continuing on until next year. However it should be noted that there is no Octocon in 2014. I am planning on been on the committee for 2015, however i feel at that point the committee at that point should have full reshuffle, and move roles around to make sure no one person becomes to tied to a role. Three years in a role can be a very long time.
Still i think we did good, and hopefully next year we can grow our membership to over 200.
A quiet night at home.|
I wandered into the cinema, with my very useful cineworld card, and watched the Amazing Spiderman.
Its actually very good. better than the Tobey Maguire ones. They have created a smart and funny spiderman, who is full of the wisecracks. This was missing from the earlier ones.
They are clearly thinking ahead for a series, and so i am looking forward to more of that!
I am now starting to do my Prep for the Trip to Worldcon at the end of August. Need to decide about flyers/ribbons/shotglasses that we may produce, which of course have a lead time.
Then i am going to need a look at new clothes. My weight loss has meant that some of the clothes i own have been worn for awhile, once while i was ballooning up and then when i came back down. I was holding off buying new clothes, as i intend to loose more, but am currently pleatued in size, and suspect i will be, even if i resume weight loss.
Not sure where the money for the clothes will come from, as i am still outside the normal range of mens clothes, so have to go to specialty stores, which are more expensive. if i can loose another 4 inches i should arrive at teh top end of standard mens wear...
|» (No Subject)|
A post to livejournal.|
Its a hello, i haven't been here for a few weeks.
Nothing exciting has happened....I have been Reading, trying to get through my Hugo REading list. a couple of more stories, two books and a pile of Graphic Novels.
Work is busy and has me working on so many projects i am loosing track of time during the day. So that is fun, better than spending eight hours surfing the internet. I have a project finished, well my part of it is finished. I am doing installs on a server so that it can act as our pre-release test server, and as a model for our live servers. So lots of installing software, and then going backwards as i realize what i did wrong. am almost ready, and then i pass the deployment over to work mate to test to breaking point!
After that comes the much bigger project, that will be even more.
But i digress away from whatever i am talking about to go into far to much detail about what is going on in work.
I am heading to This years Worldcon in Chicago, haven't been in Chico since 1986, so thats what 26 years, wonder how its changed, and would i really notice as i wasn't very observent back in the day.
Hopefully i may even have something exciting to report from Chicago, but i will probably forget for weeks and then come online and say that i had fun, like most of my convention reports.
|» I may have committed the act of reading!|
So i habve done something this weekend i haven't done in a LONG time, i read a lot of books.|
The first was Liar's Poker by Michael Lewis. Considering it is a topic i want to know as little about as possible, but are an important part of how the Irish economy has fallen apart, I.E Bond Markets. It is well written, and an absolute Page turner. It is the, apparently true, story of a guy who got involved with the bond markets and how it made him a lot of money, and well how other people lost a lot of money. When the book was written in 1989 a lot of the things that are explained in detail in the book where still not common knowledge, and while that has changed, it gives a good view of how the world started on the path to where we are now.
Then i moved on to Read "Among Others" by Jo Walton. which i was supposed to read weeks and weeks ago for Book club, but never did. it however made the Hugo shortlist, and as one of the thousands of people with a Hugo vote i am doing my best to least read all of the nominees. The work is told in a diary format, with lots left of off the page. I can see why it is considered to be one of the top books of 2011, and would suggest you go read it. I will probably put more thoughts into my report on the bookclub website.
Then there was "Double Vision" by Tricia Sullivan. The book is weird and awesome and in truth i have no idea what happened! It is full of great ideas and i suspect a lot of the ambiguity is left in so that each reader can make up their own mind as to what happened. I am glad that i finally finished this book, as it has sat half read on my desk for awhile. The main problem with the book is that it took awhile to get into it,however once in its hard to stop. This was my second attempt at one of Tricia Sullivan's book and i shall eventually return to Light born, as the language and concepts are a bit strange.
In the end i think its weird that all the books i read this weekend are told from the first person viewpoint! also the book that i found most incredible was the non-fiction book as it is the one that most stressed the rules of logic and common sense. the Fiction books made sense within their own world! However that is usually the way
|» Return to Dublin|
It has been fun to be back in Dublin. Relaxed. I had decided to take the whole week off of work, instead of just those needed for the Zagreb Trip. So it was good to just sit back and catch up on sleep and ease back into the Dublin life.|
Thursday was a trip to see Avengers Assemble. A film i enjoyed on nearly all levels, and it has attained the status of Good. i hope to get to see it again before it leaves the cinema. After that i went to visit my parents, to say hello and to get some stuff out of Storage!
Friday, i went out to the Star Wars show out in City West. it was pretty much what i expected, and so i only stayed around for less than an hour, before i was on my way, back home to read!
The weekend has been about relaxing and reading. Basically ideal fun time. Though my room is mostly clean, and a more organised in preparation for the big Re-Org that shall take place tomorrow! it shall be fun, and hopefully the room will be a better space after it.
anyway, one more piece of stuff from Zagreb, its a video recorded at the event. While a lot of it is in Croatian, if you skip to 5.20 and watch on, i appear for a short while, and do not make a total fool of myself....
|» Zagreb, with Photos|
I have many photos from the Week in Zagreb, but nearly all of them are to do with the city, and very few to do with the convention.|
Today i am going to share one set of photos!
St. George and the Dragon:
I took 9 photos of this statue, so go to flickr, and check them all out!
I am currently in Zagreb for Eurocon, the European science fiction convention.|
The trip has had one or two lows and about a million highs!
The lows include that I was so unprepared for the weather, I got sunburn!
The various levels of work out in over the last 18ish months paying off, and us winning our bid to be Eurocon 2014. Www.shamrokon.ie
Getting to know the Croatian fans, who are beyond cool. If you ever find yourself in Croatia in the last week of April, check out if sferakon is on, as it is fantastic!
I knew I was in need of a holiday, and the stress of the final push for the bid had me in bits, but the party to 5am last night followed by many hours of sleep helped me "let my hair down" I may have done a bit of dancing in the after con party, before I finally had to go to bed.
I have a few more days in Zagreb, which will be relaxed days of wandering the old city, and checking out the various sites, and basically enjoying my summer holiday.
When I get home, there is a lot of work to do, but that's for later.
|» News Type Stuff|
In exciting news, the scum bag of Dublin have broken into my Car! This was not on the street where i lived, it was down in the City Centre.
I am a little annoyed, however nothing was stolen. Or i have not noticed anything that was stolen.
The Garda response was top notch. They showed up within 20 minutes, and one checked the other cars on the street while the other went over my details. They then called in another Guard who collected several items that had been moved, in the hopes of finding prints. (while they were waiting for the other Guard, they pulled a couple of cars, one for speeding, and the other for no lights). Hopefully they will catch the scum, and if not, they have made best efforts.
I have called the windows guys my insurance company use, and have a callback sometime after 9am. Its all a bit of fun and games really.
So hopefully window will be fixed tomorrow. However no idea what time that will be done at. Hence knocking my plans for tomorrow into highly doubtful space!
In a weird way i am taking this a lot better than the last time this happened, which would have been more than 5 years ago( i can't place it exactly, but it was before i had passed my driving test, so pre-March of 07. I know deannawol
had started driving, as she came and helped me calm down. I think the major differences are that it was not in my garden, and nothing was taken.
Still massively annoyed over the issue, but whatever!
On another Note, i have had my car Five Years. wow. It doesn't feel that long.
|» Eastercon 2012|
So the weekend just past was Olympus, the 63rd Eastercon.|
First I had a ball, meet loads of old friends, and made a number of new friends.
I am not going to give a blow by blow account of the event, as it was a four day marathon of 8.30 to 2am days! And i actually had an extra day at the start as certain nameless friends convinced me to come and build Ikea furniture! We built something like 12 couches, 24 chairs and 6 Tables! or some other set of numbers i lost track! so i can't recall it all.
There are certain things that define events like Eastercon, and one of those was that while building the furniture, who should show up to give a helping hand? Paul Cornell. Paul was a GOH at the convention, so he could easily have spent the entire con as a king, instead, proving once again that he is the nicest man alive, he was in helping! but i digress, which is going to happen a LOT in this piece!
i am going to attempt to limit my thoughts to just talk about the two panels that really got me thinking. Not on the many other exciting events that happened at the convention!
( This Got Real LongCollapse )
So anyway, in closing, both of these panels have me thinking about what can be done to make sure that Octocon is a respectful place, and a welcoming place....
|» Octocon Update|
As some of you may be aware, PCon is one this weekend. As this is one of the only other Science fiction conventions in Ireland, It is a good place to try and 'pimp' for members to my own convention Octocon.|
So it was time to release some Octocon news.
The main thing, was that we were once again doing an E-Book, and that is now available for download in E-pub and Mobi. We should have a PDF version next week.
The other thing was that we released the names of Six guests, these were all part of the E-Book, so no real secret about there presence as guests, indeed there names would have been made public weeks ago, but we had a couple of issues migrating from our 2011 to 2012 site, these issues are mostly solved, and so we have a 2012 site!
Anyway, check out the book, let me know what you think!
Having a quiet Sunday afternoon in my favourite Cafe, and doing some thinking.
Of course this will not lead me to taking any action based on this thinking, as that would be far to smart and clever and all that!
Oh well, I am trying really hard to get various things on track, however I have picked up a whole new project which has stolen even more of my free time, it's nice been busy, just wish that it didn't encourage me back into bad eating habits!
One must try harder.
Hope your having a good day/week/month/year...
Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.
|» Settling in|
So i have moved.|
I moved on New years eve, and well i didn't update you lot, because i was too busy telling Twitter all about it!
At this point i am not fully settled in, i need to sort out a few things still, but it is a nice house, though i am now living on the Northside of Dublin. Near to the Canal and the National Botanical Gardens, which i will visit in February.... Maybe April, but before August!
The house is about 35 minutes walk from work, or about 15 minutes by Bike. I am still exploring all the various options, but hopefully i shall be doing a lot more walking over the next while.
|» Moving Hell|
I am, as you are probably aware, in the middle of the worst move of my life.|
I need to be fully moved out of my current place by the 1st of Jan. However, i have as yet to find anywhere to move into. I have seen some lovely places with lovely places, and some dumps that i wonder why anyone would live in!
In the end i suspect wherever i move will be short term, which is why so much of my stuff is going into storage, as i suspect that i may be moving again come June or July!
However because of how tired i am, and because of whatever i did to my back, i still have a pile of crap to sort through and work out what to do with.
All in all i need to find more time and energy, and of course for it to stop hurting when i bend over!
|» Yet another sporadic update|
So i am in the process of moving.|
I am still not sure where i am going, but i need to be out of here on the 31st of December. A friend of mine has offered me a spare room in his place, actually several friends have offered.
As such, if i don't find anywhere by the middle of next week, i am Homeless!
This is a weird situation. I mean i won't be on the streets, but still a person of No Fixed Abode!
Anyway I have put the Vast majority of my books, Games, CD's and DVD's into Storage in my parents place*. I will probably put the rest of my not 100% necessary stuff in next weekend, this includes putting my main computer somewhere, though i haven't really used my Main computer as anything more than a file download-er or music player in about 2 months.
I have been looking at places, all pretty nice, just waiting to here back from some of them.
Still it distracts me nicely from the Christmas season.
|» A passing life Update|
I Have giving notice to Landlord on Awesome Apartment, and so shall have to leave at end of the month.|
I shall be moving somewhere.....Hopefully before the end of the year, but if need be i am sure i can crash with family or friends, for a few weeks (Months...) until i sort somewhere to leave.
That been the case i shall have to start all that i own into boxes. hopefully for direct to move to new place, or possibly into storage if i am living with friends.
In the meantime this weekend i am off to a convention that is for Convention Runners. The idea being that it is a place for people who run events to be able to share information and ideas and so on. It is normally held in North America, but this year it is in Amsterdam.
Anyway. hope all is well with you lot.
|» (No Subject)|
My livejournal posting has been sporadic at best, I admit I am not really a blogger person. But it is nice to have a place I can come to and vent on occasion :) |
So who knows when I next post or what it will be about, but hopefully it won't be too long.
|» Post Octocon 2011 |
So the convention has passed with good comment from lots and lots of people, which i am very glad of. I am as always on the look out for any issues people may have had, so feel free to leave them here, signed or anonymous!|
so this time last year, i did a post on My Aims for Octocon, http://omegar.livejournal.com/246622.html, I suppose i should do a breakdown of my results of my aims
First the 3 aims
1. To grow the committee, and non committee helpers, so that is less stress on the committee.
2. To grow the attendance by 50%.
3. To maintain, or improve, the quality of the convention.
Of the three goals, we failed on the first two, and were generally a success on the third. However, that success on the third was due to a lot of hard work from all involved in the committee. As we menetioned one of the committee has stepped down as she is very busy, but we do have some small interest from others.
I am currently putting together a list of vital roles, and then we shall try and get people to actually fill those roles.
I suppose the Big difference between this year and last was the Timetable. That it barely changed the entire weekend was a due to being aware of possible difficulties and a lot of luck. So i think that as long as we can continue to maintain or improve aim 3, we are in an ok state, but we still need to do aim 1 to increase our changes of 3, and 1 and 3 combined can help 2.
Of course the reason we failed on 2, was getting the word out. people barely knew we were going on, so that is something that will need to be looked at this year.
Anyway, i have a lot of work this year, and 2013.
|» Post Octocon|
I am thankful I had the week booked off work as I would have had to take it off if I hadn't.|
The convention was great, or at least the people who were there let me know they were happy, I got to one panel, the one I was on! I did get to catch the end of a lot of panels, they all looked like people enjoyed them.
Everything went smoothly, with no real change until Sunday afternoon, the moving around of rooms dosen't count. So I at least meet that objective.
I have been unwell for the week. But nothing more than a mild head cold. Since then I have done a dead dog party, then went home and slept for 13 hours! That was nice.
I will do a proper post con post at the weekend I hope, and will compare event to last years objectives( watch out that may be a bit SPIN heavy!)
|» O Day|
So i am taken a few minutes to post to LJ, because well Octocon Kicks off tomorrow, though i will be in the hotel from today, doing some last minute set up stuff, and getting ready to kick off from 8 am tomorrow!|
If you are around Dublin tonight, and are interested in the convention there is the Official Unofficial welcome drinks! In the bar of the Camden Court Hotel from 6pm or so!
Anyway i hope to see some of you there!
Preparation continues, and we are in a pretty good position for this years event.|
The main timetable is done, And is public (http://www.octocon.com/2011/octocon-timetable), along with some general guidelines for Friday and Monday. Both of which have event's by tradition rather than planning.
The con booklet is done. We a going to have one last run over it on Monday night, to send to printers on Tuesday, to get back Thursday. The vast majority of Con badges are printed, and laminated.
The Saturday night event is starting to take shape, but needs a few more touches, and a bit of organisation.
The GoldenBblasters sound fantastic. By the sounds of it the committee that created the shortlist had fun watching a lot of movies and then arguing over the final selection. Which sounds like our judging panel, and also the audience vote will be fun.
I think this could be a great year for the convention, and while a lot of things could have been done better, This is always the case. I am considering a post convention get together with people who are interested, so we can talk about what was right and wrong and try to improve things for 2012 and 2013 and also see if people would be interested in helping out the committee.
It is strange, I am actually quite relaxed, because my awesome committee have everything under control.
So the month of October has arrived.
Octocon is two weeks away, in fact in two weeks, it will be half way over. So far the timetable is about down, and should be made public on Wednesday, about a fortnight behind plan. The con booklet is laid out, though still needs a few pieces, including my intro. I have an idea of what I want to say, so may sit down and have a poke at that in the morning.
I took today of, in order to just recharge batteries and relax. I managed to get some shopping down, read a couple of short stories, for book club on Wednesday. Cooked some of my chilli, with a few extra ingredients, and cooked me some brownies. Oh I also watch TV, actual broadcast television. First time in a long time I just watched what was on. Reminded me why I stopped!
Anyway, I have relaxed, and unwound, and am now ready to work on many Octocon things, I guess it is now full steam ahead.
To do list:
Do intro for booklet.
E-mail dealers with dealer room opening hours.
Contact hotel re technology check, wifi, parking and to confirm room layout.
Contact people re workshops.
Organise a birthday party for the Saturday night.
Make minor change to timetable, hope it doesn't cause house of cards to collapse.
Find a new housemate
Go to work ..... A lot.
Get some volunteers for gophering & related.
Try and work out what I have forgotten.