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Diabolical Plots is a Sci-fi/Fantasy zine that covers virtually every media related to the genre from books to movies to video games. This site also features regular content related to the craft of writing. Take a look around!

15 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

What is “literary”?

I’ve yet to find a widely accepted definition of “literary” as a genre. Glimmer Train classifies themselves as literary, as does Zoetrope (and many others). Whether you like the stories in these magazines is, as with all magazines, a matter of taste.

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14 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

City of Green

So along these same lines, would people who grew up in the Emerald City be able to see other colors at all? I don’t think they would. What would they see instead? Would they see everything, but shifted into the greenscale? Would non-green things be essentially invisible to them, hiding in giant blindspots? I’m curious.

12 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Glimmer Train Winter 2009 & Zoetrope All-Story Winter 2008/2009

glimmer_trainzoetropeI tried to read these with an open mind, I really did. I’ll always be, first and foremost, a speculative fiction fan. Like so many things, this is just a matter of taste. I’ve like many non-speculative books and stories, but nothing quite hits that “sense-of-wonder” button like a good science fiction or fantasy. I didn’t try to compare these literary stories to speculative stories as that wouldn’t have been fair. I wanted to decide if I would just enjoy them on their own, not compare them to some other ideal.

10 April 2009 ~ 1 Comment

Invisible Formatting

Does anybody else hate MS Word’s invisible formatting? Where if you accidentally delete one then suddenly a big chunk of your file goes wonky? Does anyone know if there’s a way to reveal them?

22 March 2009 ~ 0 Comments

“Sketch a Novel” Link

For anyone who’s thinking about writing a novel check out the following:

http://www.yorkwriters.com/2009/02/sketch-novel-in-hour-exercise.html

I’m just getting started on a novel, an expansion of my latest WotF entry, so very handy timing for me as well.

18 March 2009 ~ 0 Comments

The Last Continent by Terry Pratchett

thelastcontinentI didn’t like this book as much as I’ve liked most of his other books. I think I’ve become much more picky since I started writing, so this may be a reflection of that. To me, it’s not that easy to relate to Rincewind because he is so cowardly by definition, his reaction to any danger is to run like heck in the other direction. He doesn’t MAKE things happen, things just happen TO him.

14 March 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Wizard vs. Witch: Who’s the Real Villain?

The Wizard is in a position of power where he has spent a lifetime misleading the public and frightening his citizens into submission. A little girl from a far-off land approaches him, asking for assistance, and his response is to send her on a mission to kill his most dangerous adversary. In return he makes promises that he’s incapable of keeping, giving snake oil presents to Dorothy’s helpers and then escaping before fulfilling his promise to Dorothy.

12 March 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Wicked–Novel vs. Musical

wickedmusicalwickednovelI read Wicked a few years ago, and hated it. Then I saw the play last year and LOVED it. I decided to give the book another try, just in case I’d been wrong. Nope, I still hated it. The book has almost nothing at all to do with the play, other than sharing the same characters and a couple settings.

10 March 2009 ~ 0 Comments

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum

wonderfulwizardI read the original story by L. Frank Baum. I don’t think I’ve read this since I was a kid, if even then. I thought it was reasonably good, though it, not surprisingly, had a dry explanatory tone that is common in older literature. Also, there’s a lot of “As you know” dialogue. The scarecrow is constantly saying “I’m too dumb to do ____”, and similar statements from the Tin Woodsman and the Lion. What interested me most were the differences I noticed.

03 March 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Three Theories of Time Travel

1. Time is a slate–anything can be can be changed! Be very careful, you might prevent your own birth. (ala Back to the Future). Paradoxes are a major problem–if you change antyhing you could prevent yourself from going back which would keep you from going back to prevent yourself from going back–and so on.