Archive for April, 2009

Sale time

Ya ya, I know, sales galore in current economy. Here are two you can get behind because they are small presses and have good produce. The prices are too good to miss.

Bella Books (lesbian fiction) selling older/slightly damaged books from US$3.

Small Beer Press selling titles from US$1.

Publishers will usually have a stock of hurt books which are still perfectly readable for sale at bargain prices.  Suggest you contact them directly for a list of those titles.

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April 30, 2009 at 2:45 pm Leave a comment

LGBT romances

The Romance Writers of America (RWA) – a grassroots readers massing run amuck but somehow managed to organise themselves into a holy s**t national org that has great weight in shaping the genre as well as whipping publishers – has belatedly, after much lobbying I’m sure, officially created approved a chapter for LGBT romance. The Rainbow Romance Writers of America now have a niche in the greater heterosexual romance bookbuyers’ consciousness. Let’s see what happens after this.

[via DearAuthor.](Thanks to Stacia Seaman for the clarification)

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April 30, 2009 at 1:18 pm 2 comments

Ebooks on the iPhone (pt 3)

So it’s coming to this  – instead of agreeing on a standard format for ebooks, big corps are buying up longstanding applications  with the (possible) aim of  tieing those applications to their own outlets, and charging non-affiliates to use them.

Barnes & Noble own Mobipocket, Amazon has just bought Lexcycle who created Stanza – a popular ap for reading ebooks, including PDB or ereader files,  on the iPhone – when Amazon also has exclusive ownership of access to content on the Kindle, Apple have their own software or take a 30% cut for apps that want to be in their App Store. I think Amazon is buying up Lexcycle so it won’t have to pay a commission to an affiliate for readers who will, in future, buy ebooks from Amazon through Stanza (or worse, charge readers holding space).  So if you want to make it rich, don’t just own IP in hardware or software, create or control a marketplace and make money off tenants and force consumers to use your facilities (ala Paypal on eBay).

I’m still using Bookhelf on my iPhone because I hate to be obliged to use a 3rd party site just to transfer books between laptop and phone. The good news is, the next iTunes update will allow transfer of files between computer and phone without the need for a wireless server.

April 29, 2009 at 12:34 pm Leave a comment

2012

In The Crystal Skull, Manda Scott invites us to google and read up on the Mayan prophecy about the coming apocalyse in December 2012.

Well, it appears science agrees that something will happen in 2012, something big.

The next solar major solar flare up, expected in 2012, will blast through an unsually large hole in Earth’s protective geomagnetic shield. Think of it as a sudden powersurge that will overwhelm and then short-circuit electrics all over the world.

Full article on Wired.

As the date approaches, I’m sure we’ll be hearing more about this.

April 28, 2009 at 2:56 pm 1 comment

Bit chilly

Woof ! The temperature has finally dropped in Sydney. Strong winds, though not as blustery as Victoria, has finally brought us the cold. Not winter yet but starting. Time for woolies.

April 27, 2009 at 1:27 pm Leave a comment

Book read: The Swashbuckler by Lee Lynch

I’m a little late writing this post about The Swashbuckler. I’ve left it for several weeks after finishing the book because I was waiting for the awe to subside and for my thoughts to gather.

Lee Lynch is an icon in the world of lesbian writing. She’s been out and proud since the 50s/60s? and has been writing faithfully since then. I use the word faithfully in another sense too – in her writings, she’s archived the lesbian scene of the times and her ages.

Read her short and modest bibliography here and here, before continuing this post.

The Swashbuckler is Frenchy Tonneau, a petite, stone butch with a solid ego, who – in her hated daylife – lives with her mother and works as a cashier. You’d think Lee Lynch had presented a set character as prop to show the changing world of the 60s and 70s, but the book is about Frenchy growing and maturing,  through her friends, lovers, other lesbians, the Village and Provincetown, to finally take the lover she has been waiting for.

Frenchy never loses her butchness but she sees, or rather we see, her old-fashioned mentality, how she loses or retains the views that make her comfortable and becomes an older, wiser Frenchy. In the process, we meet the neurotic butch, Mercedes, who understands pain and love deeply and whom Frenchy unexpectedly falls in love with, dyke couples who do and don’t follow the rules, and the colourful residents of the Village, including Pamela, the gypsy hippie artist who sexes Frenchy out of her stone shell.

Lee’s writing is honest, almost brusque. Her characters are diverse and oh so interesting because she lets us see what they see. The book is about the journeys her characters take to grow, to stay lesbian, to make their relationships work. The issues they face are real, the learning incremental.  I found it refreshing to read a non-adjective laden book that is layered in humanistic issues, that starts without a promise and ends in a rainbow. There’s a lot to take in; the New York it protrays is gritty, blue-collar and ethnic, and the times were forcing Frenchy to evolve.

To pick  one lesbian and show the reader so much about the micro-environment that is the Village and the effect it has on her, at a time when very little was written about lesbians at all, marks this book as a lesbian classic.

The Swashbuckler is a beautiful story.

Swashbuckler

Lee Lynch has been published with several publishers. Her current books and backlist may be obtained from here.

The Swashbuckler is available from here.

A special post-script Frenchy story, written last year, can be found in Second Helpings, Read These Lips Volume 2 at www.readtheselips.com.

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April 25, 2009 at 6:28 pm 4 comments

The greatest library in the world

… to be.

Officially launched by UNESCO and partners, The World Digital Library extended its prototype life to the big time on Tuesday.

The WDL aims to provide, on its website, free access to cultural treasures from around the world including but not limited to manuscripts, maps, rare books, musical scores, recordings, films, prints, photographs, and architectural drawings.

Items on the WDL may be browsed by place, time, topic, type of item, and contributing institution. Site navigation tools and content descriptions are provided in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish, with many more languages represented in the actual holding items.

wdl

The WDL was proposed by US Librarian of Congress, Jame Billington.

Other main digital libraries (at this time) are Google Books and The Europeana.

April 23, 2009 at 2:12 pm Leave a comment

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Evecho’s newsy bits

News, updates and links from the lesbian and publishing ‘verse that interest me, my current projects, keeping up with authors and sharing musings on middle-class life, gourmet adventures and comparisons between East/West perspectives. My opinions will likely be linearly logical and gayly bent, as they tend to be.