Too Many Links From Today

Dyes, Diets and Deodorants: Venetian Beauty Secrets Revealed – Researcher mixes up a bunch of 16th century deodorants from a beauty manual and tries them on friends.

Glossary of Medical Terms used in 18th and 19th Centuries – I know this is TREMENDOUSLY helpful for me. Hey you know how they say you should never work with animals and children? I’d like to add that you should never plot a book around vampires either. Terribly messy. So very very messy.

Shipwreck found off of North Carolina 

3D Printed Cap tells you when your milk expired – GENIUS!!

CBD promotes enhanced healing of broken rat femurs – Huh. That’s actually interesting though I’m curious how the experiment was set up (that doesn’t seem to be in the article) and if that was the goal or an unexpected result.

…and yes, cars can be hacked.  (This is a more in-depth article about what was done, by who, and for what purposes. Not a OMG YOU”RE ALL GOING TO DIEEEEEEEEE articles that are also all over today, though that’s still implied if car manufacturers don’t do anything)

Way Way Way WAY too many Links

Clearing out my stash of articles I’ve been saving and not posting so if there are any duplicates from earlier I apologize. Yes, many of these are months old. But you might have missed them! Also I needed to clear out my email where I’d been storing them.

Unconscious Library an homage to things forgotten

THE LOST WILL AND TESTAMENT OF JAVIER GRILLO-MARXUACH – The initial writing of LOST (very interesting reading for writers of all kinds)

David Nickle’s horror novel Eutopia confronts the racial overtones of Lovecraftian fiction head on (no fiction is ever written in a vacuum and we’re better off exploring those aspects of the works that inspire us and others rather than pretending the vacuum is true. This book sounds fascinating because of its exploration.)

Another Word: Free Advice from a Full-Time Author. Worth Every Penny Paid by WESLEY CHU

The Giant Robots That Serve the World’s Largest Library Archives

Traumatic Brain Injury in Domestic Violence Victims (Trigger Warning for Domestic Violence and its effects)

Laurie Penny talks about determining difference between outrage, and justified rage of the marginalized. (Lots of good stuff but by no means perfect or meant to be. I know I am thinking more about this. It becomes harder and harder to signal boost the very real and necessary rage to promote societal change and healing without feeding the outrage machine of the privileged and perpetuating a cycle of harm. All I can really do is try to do better with my own actions. I will still screw up, but I can accept that, and do better in the future.)

An Article about Leeches (so I can find it later)

An article with good reminders about how we all screw up and how to admit it and make amends. 

Flexible Circuit Injected Into Living Brains

Google Cardboard as Gateway Drug to VR 

Hey did you know someone wrote an amusing article about T-Rex Sex? I probably already sent you this article if you’re on my IM list when I first saw it. I was torturing EVERYONE with this. Though I’m still annoyed at all these weird fakey autopsy shows they keep putting on TV. At least this one was about an animal that actually existed at some point? The Dragon Autopsy had me throwing things at the TV.

Yes I saw this thing about appearing gnome statues. 

Sex Pistols Credit Card (YES REALLY)

Student Proves Earth Surrounded by Plasma Rings

Fossilized Dinosaur Claw has preserved structures that look like blood cells. 

This just makes me want to paint glow in the dark eyes on statues everywhere. 

Interesting interview with AI specialist Stuart Russell (from April, if you follow this sort of thing you’ve probably already read it, seriously I haven’t posted one of these link wrapups in WAY TOO LONG)

Article about agency based out of Russia dealing in commercialized coordinated disinformation campaigns (paid trolls) There’s probably a lot more of this going on for a variety of reasons in all sorts of places. I’d imagine there’s a lot of marketing stuff both positive and negative being done for various products. You can see this already in product reviews on online retailers… clearly not all of those reviews are from actual customers.


Graves on the Island of Pirates

Oldest Sperm Fossil Found In Antarctica 




So yes. I have three books coming out from Fireside Fiction starting in October.

What I am about to tell you will not help you at all in getting your own books published. Really, it won’t. What I hope you’ll take away from this is how perseverance, and cultivating relationships with all kinds of people is how you will eventually succeed. Nothing happens overnight. I have been poking and prodding at this world and these characters since… I don’t know 1998? I thought I was ready to publish stuff back then, but I’m very glad I didn’t. Today seems like the end of the race to the me of 1998, but the me of today realizes this is only a new beginning. So here’s the story of how sold these books:

I don’t remember how I ended up talking to Brian White. I’m pretty sure it was on Twitter and I’m pretty sure I was giving him a raft of shit about something he was loudly protesting in a way that encourages people to engage with him in an amusing yet vaguely antagonistic way. That’s kind of his thing as @talkwordy. The longer I followed him on Twitter the more I realized there’s a lot more to him than just “that shouty guy on Twitter.”

I’m about to absolutely ruin his rep, but hopefully he’ll forgive me. You see the point where I started to respect him as an editor was one night where he was actively drunk tweeting with a large group of people and generally carousing and carrying on with a great deal of participation from many fronts. This had gone on for some time before I realized that all of his “drunk” tweets had the same errors. Consistent misspellings, consistent transposing of words, same highly irregular punctuation mistakes… and given his night job as a newspaper copyeditor I messaged him to ask, “Are you using a drunk tweet style guide?” He replied that he’d sobered up hours ago but everyone was having so much fun giving him crap he’d decided to keep the virtual party going.

That’s when I realized he not only had a similar sense of humor, he had the editing chops I would need a lifetime to develop (my punctuation tastes are… unconventional—not to mention inconsistent and wrong) so I approached Brian as a freelance editor for a project I planned to self-publish, but I wanted him to read it first because it was a little weird. I didn’t want him to commit to what would be a long term project if he hated the story. We talked a little back and forth about it and after a few weeks he asked if I was serious about self-publishing it.  I said yes, cause I didn’t think I could sell it (for a variety of reasons). He clarified that he meant could he possibly read it with the option to publish it through Fireside if he liked it. I could still refuse and he’d still work with me as an editor for self-pub. Considering I had NO IDEA that Fireside was even moving into books at all… I was kind of shocked. We talked a little bit about what that would mean and I said sure, he could have the option to offer on it.

On the evening of July 16, 2014 I sent him the first three chapters of what would become TAKE ON ME. Later that evening he asked for chapters 4-6, and the next morning he had me send everything I had.  After he read it, he asked if I was willing to let Fireside publish it.

I said yes. I want more people to read my stories. My personal reach is very small. I don’t have a big built-in audience. Fireside might not have a huge reach, but it has a much bigger one than I do and is generally well-respected in areas I care about. Fireside is taking the financial risk here instead of me, but I get an equal share of the income. Could I make more self-publishing it? Maybe? I don’t think so. I’m a very small fish in a very small pond and this works out to be a win-win for me at this particular junction with this particular story.

I can’t put a price on having Fireside as a partner in this process either. I know how much I would have paid Brian to edit it for self-pub but I got so much more than editing as a Fireside author. Brian introduced me to Andrea Phillips whose amazing book Revision launched Fireside’s foray into books. She and I have had each other to lean on and commiserate with during the publishing process in addition to boundless publisher support.

I also became a slush reader for the magazine during this process and have gotten to champion stories I loved to publication (though not all the stories I championed made the final cut). There’s a whole family of people behind Fireside who love fiction that doesn’t neatly fit in any particular box and making sure you get to read it.  I feel very privileged to be a part of that fiction-loving family (and finally able to talk about it).

I’m baaaaaaaack

devils Copy

Hey guys, long time no blog. So yeah, apparently I can’t do intensive edits and blog at the same time. Your mileage may vary but it doesn’t seem to be my wheelhouse of abilities.

Anyway, I’ve turned in my edits and now I’m working on new words. I’ve got about 25k I need to create and shape into a legit draft by the end of the month or… ULTIMATE COSMIC DOOM happens. Well, not really, but it would really screw up a lot of things. I swear this will all make a lot more sense in a couple days.

You know the giant impending news I keep hinting at? Well it kept getting pushed back for various reasons (all good!) and it is finally really actually going to be announced this week. Then you’ll finally know what I’ve been busy working on.

I’m super excited and a little terrified. Ok A LOT terrified. I don’t do well with good stress. Bad stress is easier to deal with because it is generally more actionable. There are steps I can take to mitigate bad things. It is a lot harder to mitigate anticipation of a very exciting and positive thing. I end up having the following sorts of conversations with myself:

“Wow this is really amazing.”

“Yes, but it really isn’t THAT amazing.”

“It’s kind of a big deal.”
“Don’t get cocky. If we let the full ramifications of this sink in we will be in gastrointestinal distress for the next week.”

“Right. Right. It isn’t THAT big of a deal. Just a total natural progression of events and there’s no reason to get excited.”

“Oh no.”


“Just for an instant I allowed myself to think of potential futures spread out in front of us stretching to infinity… I feel it. I feel the cosmos.”

“I feel sick.”

So, yes, that, or variations of it since July 2014. What is going to seem very sudden has been quietly in the works for a full year and took pretty much most of my adult life before that.

Watch this space.

Coming Soon.

Very Soon.

No Really.

I mean it.


Well, Hmm


We’re on a voyage of self-discovery! It appears that doing intense edits etc. is not conducive to writing blogs for me. I know a lot of authors feel differently about this and that blogging their thoughts about editing is a part of the process. It seems this is very much not the case for me. I am more introspective about process when I’m preparing to do it, rather than in the midst.

I randomly ran across a description this week which described some people as reserved and holding back great energy so they can act as dams who run the hydro-electric systems for the networks around them. This was extremely illuminating for myself and has helped me realize that I can’t always spill water over the dam at all times if I want to keep the flow of electricity constant. It’s OK to hold it all back sometimes because there’s a greater system in place I need to maintain.

Some people may look like they have it all figured out, but really we’re all figuring out as we go. Sometimes we know a lot, sometimes nothing, but we’ve all got to keep going. So I’m going to keep on keeping on and try to reason stuff out loud as I go. As always I can be contacted at minervazimmerman at gmail dot com even in the midst of edits


Indiana Fairs Won’t Have Birds Exhibited This Year – This is a good way to try and slow the avian flu in this and other area right now. I would imagine we’ll see more bans like this for the summer.

Gene linked to pain identified – It drives me nuts that people assume everyone feels pain the same way they do. There are people who feel none, those who are insensitive to various levels, and those who feel all pain extremely strongly. Hopefully this will allow better pain treatments and therapies in the future.

Receding Glaciers uncover mummified bodies and artifacts worldwide

HIV anti-virals should be started at diagnosis – I think I speak for a lot of people when I say “WHY THE HELL WASN’T THIS ALREADY THE PROCEDURE?!” Ugh, it’s probably because insurance companies didn’t want to pay for the drugs for long-term care isn’t it? I HATE EVERYTHING! It seriously pisses me off that our medical system isn’t set up to actually take care of people and improve lives. Treating symptoms and diseases is good, but there is a lot more to taking care of people and improving lives than that. Assuring preventative care and treatment as a RULE across the board would be a good start. *much gnashing of teeth*

War Boy Reviews of Wilton Silver Cool Mist – 😀

The future of talking toys and cognitive science – A lot of you will want the talking dino toy. Just sayin’

12 Things Your Cat Can Do Better Than You – gifs

Adaptive Robot will keep chasing you even with injured legs – NEAT! TERRIFYING! USEFUL!

ROBOTIC BUTT! – Yes there is a very good reason for this and it is totally serious and useful. But I’m just going to be over here making up songs about Robotic Butts. Butt butt robotic butt *robot dance*

Robot performs surgery on fruit fly – O_O Whoa. These aren’t your grandmother’s experiments on Drosophila.

“Every day is April Fool’s in nutrition.” – How a group did bad nutritional science and went viral with it to highlight problems in the field. IMPORTANT READ. Especially important for those doing research or journalism. TLDR for journalists: Always ask the sample size.

Astronaut out geeks everyone by reading HHGTG on the space station while upside down on Towel Day. HER GEEK CRED IS over 9000!

Prehistoric gaming pieces found in Utah – This is neat but really this is just here for all my Utah peeps to make RPG jokes based on archaeology at some point at a party this year. YOU’RE WELCOME!

NASA re-configuring Space Station to allow for docking of commercial ships. – This is good but it still makes me sad cause I wish NASA was doing all of its own ships.

Coffin remains tell story of young woman’s Bronze Age travels – Ok so I don’t see why they are calling her a priestess other than male archaeologists ALWAYS seem to label well-preserved female remains with grave goods as priestess or princess, however… the chemical analysis is solid science and tells quite an interesting story of a life lived outside of what we generally assume Bronze Age life was like.

“Mom Brain” is a real change in cognition caused by hormones – Duh. It’s stuff like this is why we need more female scientists. We need MORE people studying hormonal science. Seriously. Anyone who has ever had estrogen fluctuation due to nature or therapy knows how real this stuff is and how much we have yet to learn.

Neurosurgeon Reflects on the ‘Awe and Mystery’ of the brain 

Natural History Museum in London finds 17th century box of tea thought to be oldest tea in Britain. 

Aboriginal language researches ask for Wikipedia accommodations for cultural differences. – THIS sort of consideration is so important. The last thing any culture needs is a bunch of academics to show up and save something only for academics (and seriously they don’t have the best track record of even managing that) more people need to be asking “How can we help you?” rather than “How can we help ourselves?”

Bill Nye tries to explain the universe as it relates to white women in their 20s – Always nice to see him doing sketch comedy again.


Well, I managed to fail all week at posting. That was not my intent. However, I spent a lot of time talking with people one on one rather than crafting posts. I do not regret making that choice at all, even if I wish I’d managed a few more posts. Maintaining my relationships with people is much more important than open broadcasting. I’m more worried about all of the other stuff I didn’t get done in addition to not blogging. I’m behind where I want to be on several things and I need to try and do as much as I can to catch up.

I’m currently watch a pair of crows try to chase off a pair of ravens while the grackles “help”. The ravens don’t seem overly worried by the constant dive bombing and harassment and just calmly go around collecting nesting supplies and food. The ravens will occasionally twist talons up and force the crows to pull off their dives but otherwise don’t seem to be super bothered. If anything I think they are taunting the crows a bit. Not sure why I mention this.

Anyway, this week did not go according to plan, but what does? All I can do is accept it didn’t and sort out what I need to do, what I can do, and implement. I’ve worked out a lot of stuff in my head this week even if I wasn’t as actively productive as I wanted to be. I have successfully changed my diet and improved a lot of my daily habits. No one really expected me to be perfect with everything forever, including me. So time to suck it up, buttercup, and go forward. It isn’t going to do anyone any good to worry about it. It was just a bad week. Those happen. So what?

I give myself permission to move forward and be awesome.


Artist who crochets animal skeletons. And her work for sale.

You are pooing wrong. 

OLED giant screen that sticks with magnets. – I wrote OLED on surfaces everywhere in  COPPER and I so want them everywhere already.

JPL creating search tools for Deep Web

Date for oldest stone tools pushed back due to wrong turn – and I assume no one wanting to get back in the car when they stopped for a break so they agreed to do a survey.

Why your healthy immune system doesn’t destroy you. 

Cephalopods can see through their skin.

What happens after you die. – this should probably be directly under why your immune system doesn’t destroy you article cause it talks about the breakdown of the things holding our gut biomes out of our other cells and breaking down our bodies after death.

Some of you may need things at this store. via @MortuaryReport

The best new veggie recipe I’ve made this week. 

time lapse of bee being “born” 

Nintendo hires Bowser as new VP of Sales – Snort.

Amputee writes about reaction to Mad Max: Fury Road. 

Wendy Wagner talks about learning your process. – Know yourself. Do what works. If it stops working, stop doing it and try something else. Super important and we all need reminding from time to time.

Cool new technology and how it is being used in museums – This is one of those tech things forever out of financial reach for smaller institutions like I work for, but I still think it is pretty awesome. I particularly like visitors being able to curate a collection of things from their visit. That’s also information the museum can use in future exhibit and design decisions cause they’ll know how many people collected particular things during their visits.


“9 Things I wish people knew about anxiety” – very important read. Someone you know has an anxiety disorder and this can help you be less of an inadvertent asshole to them. #7 and #9  are particularly important.

“Ginga” New Daniel José Older Story on 



Dear Internet, it has been two days since I blogged and it was not a weekend. The donwannas came over me and I was not strong enough to overcome them.

I’ve finished line edits and now I’m working on writing needed additions to this project. This means writing scenes from the POV of the most creeptastic villain I’ve ever created, which is uncomfortable. It’s very much a Frollo thing for me. Ah. I probably should explain that.

Many years ago I was in a stage production of Quasimodo and a friend of mine, Tim, was playing the part of the lecherous priest, Frollo. The lady playing his obsession Esmerelda was also the director and she was very frustrated with how empty his words seemed. I don’t remember exactly how she put it, but she explained that Frollo needed to see Esmerelda as something he wanted more than anything in the world and she was forbidden and that it didn’t matter if Tim had to imagine her as a damn candy bar his mother had strictly forbade him, Frollo needed to see Esmerelda as the subject of his deepest desires.

They reset the scene, started again… and dude became Frollo. As the scene ended we all sat there in silence until someone went… “HOLY SHIT”. And the director said “YES THAT. DO THAT EVERY TIME.” And we (an otherwise mostly female cast) all agreed he’d just managed to creep the fuck out of all of us.

And the fact that Tim had just managed to creep us all out made him amazingly uncomfortable to the point where he never did what he had managed to do again. He always held back, even knowing it would create a better performance because it wasn’t one he wanted to do well.

So yeah, writing this character is deeply uncomfortable.


Jewish Cemetery inside GM plant 

Using rat poison creates botfly flymagedden for reporter – Gross story illustrating why rat poison blocks are a bad idea on multiple levels

Concrete Building heals its own cracks with limestone “scabs” 

Jewish origins of Kentucky Bourbon 

Triggers for Creating Internal Change – I’m trying to make some positive changes for myself and this is one of the lists that rang true for me this week. I keep having to remind myself how just stopping and taking 10 deep breaths can make all the difference. I’d like to be meditating 15 min a day but I’m sure as hell not there yet. Soon though. 🙂

New technique for making nanofibers – Wow, it’s like a spinning wheel on a very small scale

It looks like we’ve lost 40% of bee colonies last year – I feel like I should take up bee keeping just to do my part to help.

Forgotten Cocktails of Maryland

Sweden’s Gay Defense System – Best name– but I wish it was more Special Forces and less trolltastic gizmo. Then I thought that the picture in the article was a little over the top… until I realized that’s an actual picture of the device.  

Self-perpetuating botnets in unsecured routers

Ford’s staff Cultural Anthropologist – This is pretty much the kind of thing I always assumed I’d end up doing. I wish this article was much much longer cause that seems like a lot of really interesting data being collected.

Angel Hair Phenomenon – baby spiders ballooning make an incredible sight.

Warm blooded Fish Found 

Article about Commemorative DEA patches – Damn a lot of these look like you’d find them at a Deadhead event…

Where am I? What state is this? Why am I wearing these coveralls? Is this my blood?

This is a marmot. That is all.
This is a marmot. That is all.

Oh heeeeeey I remember now. I really don’t like this time of year. Everything is all shifty, not quite summer, not quite spring. The allergies are plentiful and my brain gets all weird. I’ve fallen off the wagon on a lot of my chores and things so I’m having to stop. take a breath, and then go back and pick up the slack. I am doing REALLY good at cooking and making lots of yummy healthy food, so I’ve got to keep that up while I go back and figure out why I’ve let other stuff slack. I suspect it’s just a temporary case of the donwannas. I just need to shuttupitbuildscharacter myself a few times and keep it going without beating myself up too bad.


Man sneezes out toy rubber dart after 44 years 

Space coffee cup

SFWA Cookbook available for pre-order

22 rules for Storytelling According to Pixar – I’m sure I’ve posted some version of this before but this one is pretty. I will admit #4 is pretty much how I outline everything initially. 20 is a big one for me too.

Lost fantasy movie “Black Angel” now available on YouTube – I’m very interested to see this, no idea what I’ll think.

Interesting astrology article on Library of Congress blog

Daily Wordcounts of Famous Authors – I try to average 500 a day during a project for what it’s worth.

Science of Scarcity 

Revision First Week Sales Numbers – Andrea has posted up her week 1 sales for Revision so there’s more transparency and that others (like me) can use this information in the future. Thank you Andrea, this is truly a service for other authors.

Dark bands on Europa might be salt colored by radioactive exposure

New York Times drops its paywall 

Why it’s so hard to talk to white people about racism – TLDR: Basically people don’t see racism unless they also see ill intent. (Not sure if I posted this before, but I tend to look here for articles I want to find later so I’m posting it again if I did.)

What drives subconscious racial bias

SCIENCE FICTION SPACE TECHNOLOGY TERMS – Hey, that’s kind of neat. Lots of stuff to poke around on there… even if the homepage is straight out of 1999

Someone donated a grenade to Goodwill again – Look, if the post office won’t let you mail it you shouldn’t donate it anywhere either.

Green algae virus can impact human cognition – O_O

Good news: Flying car exists. Bad news: it had its first crash. 

Cuban lung cancer vaccine therapy – Huh. This is interesting in a lot of ways.

15 Neato space technology concepts

Edits and Allergies Melting My Brain

This is your brain on edits. It’s delicious with graham crackers and toasted marshmallows.

Well, I’d already decided I wasn’t going to blog on the weekends, but then our internet had an outage so I couldn’t have anyway. *cuts out long rambling bit* So… anyway, long story short, I spent all weekend editing and combined with allergy related asthma, I can’t even keep track of what day it is in the real world.

TOO MANY LINKS (mostly Space edition):

NASA sez No REALLY there is no warp drive – Sure, that’s what you WANT us to believe. (Clarifying Update to update to the update on this)

Martian sunsets are blue – SO COOL!

Mysterious reflections on Ceres continue to get weirder. 

Getting laser internet on Mars and making sure astronauts get good meals – Lots of really great details about the human side of technology needed for a manned Mars mission. I want Mars furniture already.

Hey did you know there’s an area of Brazil populated by 5 generations of Confederate refugees from the American Civil War?