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Author Topic: EP278: Written on the Wind  (Read 15197 times)
Scattercat
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« Reply #60 on: February 24, 2011, 05:45:39 PM »

I see the point here -- the Western Human aliens. But I almost felt like the author was trying too hard to make the aliens alien by referring to their weird (to us) characteristics. This is something Scattercat pointed out to me that I was doing in a story I wrote about nonhumans, and now I'm noticing it more and more.

Bwahaha!  You cannot unsee what has been seen!  You cannot unpick the nit that has been picked!

(I do kind of agree that the aliens here weren't very alien; their behavior was totally in line with modern American office politics, basically.)
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ElectricPaladin
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« Reply #61 on: February 24, 2011, 06:13:41 PM »

I see the point here -- the Western Human aliens. But I almost felt like the author was trying too hard to make the aliens alien by referring to their weird (to us) characteristics. This is something Scattercat pointed out to me that I was doing in a story I wrote about nonhumans, and now I'm noticing it more and more.

Bwahaha!  You cannot unsee what has been seen!  You cannot unpick the nit that has been picked!

(I do kind of agree that the aliens here weren't very alien; their behavior was totally in line with modern American office politics, basically.)

Or alternately, modern American office politics are totally inline with alien behavior. Just sayin'...
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Captain of the Burning Zeppelin Experience.

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Gamercow
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« Reply #62 on: February 25, 2011, 03:05:18 PM »

I see the point here -- the Western Human aliens. But I almost felt like the author was trying too hard to make the aliens alien by referring to their weird (to us) characteristics. This is something Scattercat pointed out to me that I was doing in a story I wrote about nonhumans, and now I'm noticing it more and more.

Bwahaha!  You cannot unsee what has been seen!  You cannot unpick the nit that has been picked!

(I do kind of agree that the aliens here weren't very alien; their behavior was totally in line with modern American office politics, basically.)

Personally, I'd rather have Office Space alien drones than something along the lines of "Wweyuw harbled the wangle frunctiously, arbinguous in guryc's gibble fong gawple."  Sometimes reference points are good.
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Scattercat
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« Reply #63 on: February 25, 2011, 03:07:56 PM »

What makes you assume the aliens will use a spoken language?  Or consonants?  ;-)
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Mirrorshards: Very Short Stories
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ElectricPaladin
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« Reply #64 on: February 25, 2011, 04:02:58 PM »

"Wweyuw Harbled the Wangle Frunctiously"

Sounds like a great title, along the lines of Rejiggering the Thingamajig.

Alternate joke: I wish I could find a sentient to harble my wangle.

Take your pick.
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« Reply #65 on: February 25, 2011, 04:34:34 PM »

"Wweyuw Harbled the Wangle Frunctiously"

Sounds like a great title, along the lines of Rejiggering the Thingamajig.

Alternate joke: I wish I could find a sentient to harble my wangle.

Take your pick.
Harbling is a very underrated corporate activity. Wangling, on the other hand..
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Science is what you do when the funding panel thinks you know what you're doing. Fiction is the same only without the funding.
tinygaia
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« Reply #66 on: February 25, 2011, 08:12:54 PM »

"Wweyuw Harbled the Wangle Frunctiously"

Sounds like a great title, along the lines of Rejiggering the Thingamajig.

Alternate joke: I wish I could find a sentient to harble my wangle.

Take your pick.
Harbling is a very underrated corporate activity. Wangling, on the other hand..
As long as they do it frunctiously, I'll take it.
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kibitzer
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« Reply #67 on: February 27, 2011, 10:21:32 PM »

Lemme tell ya, frunctiousness is way over-rated.
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annB
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« Reply #68 on: February 27, 2011, 10:36:29 PM »

Enjoyable story. Once again I found myself listening to a podcast wishing that readers would keep a dictionary handy to double-check the pronunciation of words - in this case, "consortium", "interminable", "phoneme" ("phenomes" exist, but languages have phonemes), and "modal", which is accented on the first, not the second, syllable. Yes, a minor issue, but as a word-lover, I find it jarring. Mispronunciations are the typos of audio presentations. It knocks me out of a story for a moment as I am forced to pause to assess "what was that?"
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Sir Postsalot
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« Reply #69 on: February 28, 2011, 09:55:40 AM »

I see the point here -- the Western Human aliens. But I almost felt like the author was trying too hard to make the aliens alien by referring to their weird (to us) characteristics. This is something Scattercat pointed out to me that I was doing in a story I wrote about nonhumans, and now I'm noticing it more and more.

Bwahaha!  You cannot unsee what has been seen!  You cannot unpick the nit that has been picked!

(I do kind of agree that the aliens here weren't very alien; their behavior was totally in line with modern American office politics, basically.)

Personally, I'd rather have Office Space alien drones than something along the lines of "Wweyuw harbled the wangle frunctiously, arbinguous in guryc's gibble fong gawple."  Sometimes reference points are good.

Calloo, Callay!
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Max e^{i pi}
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« Reply #70 on: February 28, 2011, 01:11:31 PM »

I see the point here -- the Western Human aliens. But I almost felt like the author was trying too hard to make the aliens alien by referring to their weird (to us) characteristics. This is something Scattercat pointed out to me that I was doing in a story I wrote about nonhumans, and now I'm noticing it more and more.

Bwahaha!  You cannot unsee what has been seen!  You cannot unpick the nit that has been picked!

(I do kind of agree that the aliens here weren't very alien; their behavior was totally in line with modern American office politics, basically.)

Personally, I'd rather have Office Space alien drones than something along the lines of "Wweyuw harbled the wangle frunctiously, arbinguous in guryc's gibble fong gawple."  Sometimes reference points are good.

Calloo, Callay!
He chortled in his joy?

Huh *scratches head* Huh
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Sir Postsalot
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« Reply #71 on: February 28, 2011, 02:15:01 PM »

I see the point here -- the Western Human aliens. But I almost felt like the author was trying too hard to make the aliens alien by referring to their weird (to us) characteristics. This is something Scattercat pointed out to me that I was doing in a story I wrote about nonhumans, and now I'm noticing it more and more.

Bwahaha!  You cannot unsee what has been seen!  You cannot unpick the nit that has been picked!

(I do kind of agree that the aliens here weren't very alien; their behavior was totally in line with modern American office politics, basically.)

Personally, I'd rather have Office Space alien drones than something along the lines of "Wweyuw harbled the wangle frunctiously, arbinguous in guryc's gibble fong gawple."  Sometimes reference points are good.

Calloo, Callay!
He chortled in his joy?

Huh *scratches head* Huh

Oh that was just my way of chiming in to say that nonsense words can be fun too, ala The Jabberwocky.
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stePH
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Cool story, bro!


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« Reply #72 on: March 07, 2011, 04:15:13 PM »

Anthropocentrism ftl.

Faster Than Light?   Wink

FOR THE LULZ
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LaShawn
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« Reply #73 on: March 18, 2011, 02:07:43 PM »

Oh, lovely, lovely story. I wasn't too hot about the other Levine story, but this one had me on the edge of my seat. Beautiful tale of perserverance in the face of bad odds, and the message at the end was surprisingly poignant.
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mbrennan
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« Reply #74 on: May 18, 2011, 02:24:03 AM »

I enjoyed this one (a lot more than I did "Wind from a Dying Star"), though I agree with a lot of the nitpicks here.

I also think the reading was a lot rougher than I usually expect from Mur, in terms of hesitations, stumbles, and mispronunciations.  Some of that was because of the alien names, true, but not all of it.  And for those complaining about the names being too alien . . . .

Not alien names per se, just the ones that shriek 'alien' by being made up of bizarre vowel/consonant arrangements.

Frankly, a lot of the world's languages have vowel/consonant arrangements that look bizarre to an Anglophone reader.  Some of my favorite examples: the Aztec god Huitzilopochtli, the Irish verb form "bhfaighidh," and the (I think) Czech last name Hrynczyszyn.  (Fun fact: depending on your dialect, that Irish verb can be pronounced like the English words "we" or "why."  No, really.)  So I actually like alien languages doing unexpected things; unless the author is a dedicated conlanger, those things are probably no more unexpected than stuff found in real human languages.

But it does pay for the reader to practice the names and words until they roll smoothly off the tongue.  Otherwise, yes, they do trip up the narration.
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