Books are Swimming Pools

Diving in the summer reading! A book is like a swimming pool - Art and writing by Michèle Laframboise

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Dive in, my fearless fans!
(But in real life, always check the water depth before!)

Fun at the Signing Table – The Contract!

My Big, Cool Contract

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I just signed the contract for my 17th novel  which gave me the idea. My first contact as a budding writer, years ago, was a not such a good one, and I was saved only because the publisher went bankrupt.  This contract is my third with this publisher and their conditions are fair.

There’s a lot more than the  traps told by the snakes. CAVEAT: I’m not a lawyer.  In case of problems, the best is to consult an IP specialist.

The Writer’s Union of Canada offers sound advice too.   More precisions on the US Copyright Office. The website Writers Beware presents a good overview of rights vs copyrights. For those of you pondering about indie publishing, I do recommand the very well-organized series of articles The Business Rusch by the poly-genres author Kris Rusch.

My husband often wears a Marillion T shirt in the comics, a group that he likes.

The page is my hidden homage to  Andre Franquin, the creator of the pesky “laughing” Gull featuring in the Gaston Lagaffe series. And in this comic. As for my own signature, it figures in the middle of the page for a change…

And, about the copy…

The Big, Cool Contract: Epilogue

Dwarf Planet, Big Flaming Ice Heart!

PLuto surprised everyone with this heart-shaped geological  feature

(Pluto photographied by LORRI and Ralph instruments on the New Horizons, spacecraft)

Pluto is technically a  dwarf planet since 2006, but it changes nothing to the sense of wonder. Pluto surprised everyone with this heart-shaped geological feature!

Colors are boosted since only a small fraction of our sunlight reaches the Pluto system. The dwarf planet has known activity periods, and this 2000 km wide flaming heart maybe composed of nitrogen ice.

New satellites (Hydra, Nix since 2004,  Kerberos and Styx) added themselves to the larger Charon).

The sense of wonder of those pictures should not make us forget the long years of preparation by NASA astronomers and other teams, the nine-year voyage of the New Horizons craft, travelling more than 5 billions km in spirals to take advantage of the Jupiter sling-shot effect to boost acceleration.

Science, unlike movies where everything goes fast (problem detection,  hypothesis, analysis, solution finding), needs time. Reality is years of painstaking preparation for a few second of scintillating results.  Followed by more months and years of analysis, that may help us to learn more about the solar system origins. The freshly transmitted pictures show impressive mountains and canyons…

Fun at the Signing Table – The 2015 Leap Second !

This Minute Has 61 Seconds - the 2015 leap second To learn more about the 2015 Leap Second:

The International Earth Rotation Service and Reference Systems and the Paris observatory! Yes, it does have a nice SF-ish ring to its name!

The Leap Second home page.

More about Universal and  coordinated universal  time. International second

And for the “bug”, the network time protocol for clock synchronization between computer systems.

And to look up the time anywhere, (one of the atomic time websites!) and to look up in Eastern Time.

Happy July! 

Fun at the Signing Table – Hyperboles, again!

Hyperboles and physics! Art and writing by Michèle Laframboise

Meddling with physics is still big fun for a SF writer!

Thanks to my hyperboles suppliers Pascal Colpron (eternity), Robin Dumont (hair) and André Lavoie (minus a thousand). The ET visitor comes from a Le Bob original creation.

Matter falling in a black hole get heated up, so much that it emits a stream of X rays. In the panel with the car in space, a Cygnus X1 like binary system is illustrated, a star with a companion black hole.

The mean universe temperature is about 3 Kelvin.  The fossil microwave picture is a courtesy of NASA.

The Universe in a Nutshell by Stephen Hawking was an inspiration for the universe 4-dimensional models. The Hawking radiation is the name given to a black body radiation when a black hole evaporates.

As for the Big Crunch, well, there’s still some time before, if it happens!

A Half-Glass of Water

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A coda to the yesterday entry... and a new solution to an old riddle?.

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Fun at the Signing Table – A Glass of Water

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A Glass of Water - how to explain the glooal climate change with a glass of water.

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The relation between our recent cold weather spells and global warming involves complex phenomena, the Gulf Stream current among them. For the more eager :

To better understand our irrealists expectations regarding science, conditioned by our “I-want-it-now!” culture: The Problem with Science: from Action Movies to the Real World!

For a innovative use of our fossil resources to mitigate the climate change, see une solution au casse-tête arctique.

To read about the projected effects of a Shutdown of thermohaline circulation, and here is a map of the thermohaline circulation.

For a more higher level paper, about the Gulf Stream, see this abstract of a paper published in 2015 by Jaime B. Palter, from the Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences of McGill University: The Role of the Gulf Stream in European Climate (Annual Review of Marine Science Vol. 7: 113-137) 

The real demonstration will be given by the planet, as soon as the last ice and land glaciers will have melted.

Fun at the Signing Table – Hyperboles!

If our exaggerations became litteral...  Art and text by Michèle Laframboise In mathematics, an hyperbole is a curve obtained by cutting a plan trhough a double cone. In day-to-day life, an hyperbole is a wildly exaggerated statement.

And yes, this majestic wave stems from an ancient (around 1830)  japanese woodblock print !

An Empty Table

SF writer and editor Joël Champetier, 57, died May 30, 2015 after a long struggle with leukemia. Champetier was a renowned and award-winning SF author, and longtime editor of Solaris, one of the most prestigious French-language SF magazines in the world.

We lost a good friend this last week-end. The light rain waking me up the same night was Joel’s goodbye or at least, a poetic coincidence.

Joel Champetier did a lot for many of us, and has kept his simplicity and warmth. His SF stories created new trails for us to walk at our rythm.

Fun at the Signing Table – But You’ll get Exposure!

But you'll get so much exposure! Why should we pay you for the favor?

But you’ll get so much exposure! Why should we pay you for the favor?
Should you work for free? This chart by Jessica Hische might help you!