Monthly Archives: April 2007

Join me on Alternate Realities!

Alternate Realities: there is more than one way to see the truth…

I have started a social network for readers and writers who love speculative fiction in all its guises to discuss their favorite books and exchange ideas on what SF is all about today.

This is not a place to promote your own book, although there is plenty of room to do so in your own profile page. Rather, I’d like this to be a community where speculative fiction, in all its guises, is talked about.

You can click here to join Alternate Realities

About Alternate Realities

A place for readers and writers of alternate reality, speculative fiction, weird fiction, sf mixed genres, and fantasy to meet and discuss the books they love.

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Join me on Alternate Realities!

Alternate Realities: there is more than one way to see the truth…

I have started a social network for readers and writers who love speculative fiction in all its guises to discuss their favorite books and exchange ideas on what SF is all about today.

This is not a place to promote your own book, although there is plenty of room to do so in your own profile page. Rather, I’d like this to be a community where speculative fiction, in all its guises, is talked about.

You can click here to join Alternate Realities

About Alternate Realities

A place for readers and writers of alternate reality, speculative fiction, weird fiction, sf mixed genres, and fantasy to meet and discuss the books they love.

Technorati Tags: , , , , ,

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The Mad Techno-Guide

opendoorsm.jpgI’ve been using computers and computer software for almost thirty years. Been blogging for five. Maintained my own website for eleven.

I’ve been part of various internet communities for at least fifteen years. Now that computers and the internet are becoming more and more complicated and sophisticated, not to mention used by several million people (there are from 15 to 30 billion webpages) it gets more difficult for the average user (make that a novice) to find his or her way through the morass.

This weekly techno-guide (every Wednesday) is designed for people who know little about computers, the internet, blogging, html code, net etiquette, use of resources , website, podcasts, videos, and internet tracking systems such as SEO, RSS, CSM.

Am I speaking another language already? If yes, then this techno-guide is for you. I’ll go step-by-step through the basics, keeping it short so as not to overwhelm you, but also giving you real information so you can increase your knowledge and be more effective on your own.

Imagine, not having to wait for anyone to upload an image, make changes to your website, start your own blog, or even optimize the speed of your computer! I mean to open a door to another world for you (hence this picture). It is up to you, however, to step through it.

I welcome topic suggestions, questions, comments. The more interactive this column is, the better for all of you out there. You ‘ll be able to refer to all the posts from the Mad Techno-Guide in our Archives.
M. D. Benoit is the author of SF Thriller Synergy and The Jack Meter Case Files. She has been using computers for more than 25 years, and has managed to learn a few things along the way.

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Currently Reading…

The List, by Tara Ison
Scribner Hardcover
272 pages
ISBN-10: 0-7432-9414-9

Isabel and Al are a couple. A mismatched one, on the surface: she is a future surgeon, a brilliant one at that, he is a one-time wonder movie director now working in a video store. When they meet at a movie theater, they connect at a fundamental level. The next day, Al moves in.

Yet, the relationship does not go smoothly for either of them. Isabel is troubled that she loves someone with so little direction in life when she is so driven herself, Al resents her using her money to buy him things, things he doesn’t want. Soon, the love they have becomes twisted and so unsatisfactory to Isabel that she proposes a breakup process: a to-do list of ten activities that will conclude their relationship. But as the items are struck off the list, their behavior becomes more erratic and warped, leading to the mangled conclusion of their affair.

The list is a deeply disturbing novel on several fronts. It makes us face the reality that we all judge someone’s value by their work status. What they do is what they are. It makes us realize that our own insecurities could fuel the destruction of something precious, for fear of knowing ourselves. It makes us realize that passion without real communication is doomed to fail. Yet, The List doesn’t provide the solutions. It leaves us with the unsatisfactory ending of a NHE (Not Happy Ending), and yet, the story could not have ended any other way.

Tara Ison delves equally well into the worlds of medicine and movies, which helps paint each protagonist into vivid details without ever telling us about them directly. Ison’s prose is sharp, crisp, and elegant. Even when she writes a funny scene, she succeeds in showing its underlying pathos. The List is a thinking novel, one that leaves you wanting to change a few things about your own life.

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The Thinking Blogger Award

Sherry Ramsey awarded me, among four others, the Thinking Blogger Award, which I’m also proud to display on my sidebar. The Thinking Blog is part of a meme, but different as well, since the person who gives the award says “these blogs make me think”.

The rules are simple:

  1. If, and only if, you get tagged, write a post with links to 5 blogs that make you think,
  2. Link to the original post so that people can easily find the exact origin of the meme,
  3. Optional: Proudly display the ‘Thinking Blogger Award‘ with a link to the post that you wrote

So, congratulations to the five following bloggers for winning the Thinking Blogger Award:

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