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I enjoyed To End All Wars by David Tallerman, a mystery about a WWI Lieutenant in the trenches who finds something peculiar amongst all that horror.


Interesting things happened to book sales as people prepared for lockdown. My feeling is that bucket list books will be replaced by less worthy and more fun or accessible stories in a couple of weeks. It's a bit like gym resolutions now in the first week after New Year.

music, covid-19 

Have written a roundup post for all the free stuff to do while social distancing, if anyone is bored and looking for something to do:

Kitten update: four living kittens born to my friend's cat this morning. No pictures from me as yet - mummy cat was being protective and hiding them when I visited. This is a great sign, because it means she's bonding with them.


Duolingo's Russian course authors show some Izzard appreciation.

If I have to move my class online, what's a gdpr-compliant service that could deal with 30+ students and doesn't require special software?

I never do real time stuff online with big groups and interactivity

COVID-19 - Good news, science 

Coronavirus, article giving evidence why we should act now 

Cold Fire, book 2 in the Spiritwalkers series by Kate Elliott, is a corker. It's a really good mix of sweetness, adventure, and nothing-is-as-it-seems.

With handshakes now taboo and kisses a no-no, how will you be greeting people?

Waking up to the revelation that my degree is won't make me richer. I mean, I already knew, but the tables on page 53 and 54 are quite shocking:

I did French Studies.

I can see the government using this as a reason to cut certain HE courses, but to an extent these differences are already corrected for. There has already been a big drop off in A-level language study, for instance.

The reality is: this industry is set up to keep creatives as close as possible to penniless serfs. Amazon’s “race to the bottom” and predatory practices make it even worse.

I really enjoyed All Systems Red. I think the reason it works is that it takes all of the most relatable aspects of being an introvert and puts them in android form.

UCU strike / UCSC strike 

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Wandering Shop

The Wandering Shop is a Mastodon instance initially geared for the science fiction and fantasy community but open to anyone. We want our 'local' timeline to have the feel of a coffee shop at a good convention: tables full of friendly conversation on a wide variety of topics. We welcome everyone who wants to participate, so long as you're willing to abide by our code of conduct.