Just got my copy of the Laundry RPG…

…it’s very nifty. For those wondering: The Laundry is a roleplaying game based on the Laundry Files series by Charles Stross, which is itself a horror/espionage series about computational power meets the Great Old Ones. Nice layout, decent writing, and the game is more or less mechanics-compatible with both Call of Cthulhu and Delta Green.

Good times, good times.

Odd thing about the Fuller Memorandum.

It would seem that The Fuller Memorandum – which is, of course, the latest volume in the Cthulhu-meets-mathematics-meets-spy-fiction series by Charles Stross – is not supposed to be out until July 6th.  But, of course, that doesn’t mean that the book magically pops into our reality on that date: it has to be printed ahead of time, which means that it has a tangible physical existence.

And that means that it has to be shipped to bookstores before the official publication date.

And sometimes they screw up, and put one copy in the relevant genre section.

And sometimes a person is walking through the relevant genre section in that magic golden hour between somebody screwing up, and somebody noticing the screw-up.  On the off chance that something like this could happen.

And sometimes that person notices the book, grabs it without breaking stride, and heads for the register.

And sometimes that person buys the book, and gets away clean.

Not that I’d know anything about that, of course.

Moe Lane

Book of the Week: The Trade of Queens.

Because I broke down and eventually read The Revolution Business; gratuitous bashing of the last administration aside (I had Charlie Stross figured as being too smart to auto-date his books like that), it wasn’t as bad as it could have been. The Trade of Queens finishes it all up, which is probably all to the good.

And so, farewell to The Cat in the Hat.

See, this is why I don’t mind funding the National Endowment of the Arts.

You can watch the video below only if you promise to read David Thompson’s post on it first.  It’s important that you do that: it’s not fair for me to reproduce it in full here, and it’s just too good to miss.

OK, you did that?  Excellent.  Here’s the video:

OK, see why I don’t mind funding the NEA?

Precisely: if we let somebody like Teixeira just wander around loose to try to find his own food, clothing and shelter, chances are excellent that when he finally autodarwinates* he’d accidentally take somebody with a net positive use to society with him.

So, it’s not so much a government subsidy as it is life insurance.

Moe Lane

*Thank you, Charlie Stross. But for the love of God, give up the grudge, OK? They’re out of office and it’s turning out that they got it right anyway. Drop the series as a bad job and just write the next Bob Howard novel.

…oh. Right. Should have checked first. Never mind…

Looking for something to read? (Charles Stross)

(Today’s guy: Charles Stross)

If you’re the sort of person who thinks that mixing higher mathematics, spy fiction, and the Cthulhu Mythos is kind of cool… well, you’ve probably already read The Atrocity Archives and The Jennifer Morgue. On the other hand, if the idea’s never actually occurred to you before, or you’re just looking for a good couple of books, you should pick these two up.  Stross is a fun writer with a good eye for combining horror and science fiction; his alternate histories (the most developed being the Merchant Princes series; a couple of good ones can be found in his short story collection Toast) are likewise well-conceived.  The space opera that he’s done has not really reeled me in as much, but there’s nothing wrong with it; I’m just more of a E. E. “Doc” Smith type.