Resin Heroes

Direct beam comms #5



TV

So there’s the Classic Doctor Who series that ran from 1963 to 1996 and a modern Doctor Who of ones from 2005 to present. Is there now a Classic The X-Files of shows that ran from 1993 to 2002 and a modern The X-Files of ones from now on? I suppose much of if the “classic” and “modern” labels will only have any meaning if the new Fox series is limited to just the six episodes or if there’s more than one season.

TNT is working on a TV series version of the film Animal Kingdom. That movie is one of my favorites, I thought it was one of the best of 2010, about a lives of a family of crooks that’s slowly unravelling after one is killed by the police and in retribution the family kills two cops. I think that’s why the movie is so interesting — it’s about something coming apart, destroying itself. It’s still too early to tell, but I don’t think that a (reportedly) series about a family of criminals that’s not coming apart but instead lasts season after season would be as interesting as the latter. Then again I’d be happy to eat my words since I didn’t think Hannibal or The Americans would be any good either and those two shows turned out to be two of my favorites.

Comics

Benedict Cumberbatch as Marvel's Doctor Strange

Benedict Cumberbatch as Marvel’s Doctor Strange

The comic series Aquila, which ran in the pages of 2000 AD, is available in a collected edition January 12. Aquila: Blood of the Iceni is a sort of mashup of Conan the Barbarian and the writings of H.P. Lovecraft with the title character living in Roman Empire times in the place that will one day be the UK who’s brought back from the dead with one catch; he must provide souls to the ancient hungry god Ammit the Devourer. A god that’s always hungry!

In finding these souls, Aquila must do battle with winged creatures, an insane Nero trying to become a god himself and the natives of England who are out to push all foreign invaders off their land.

Books

CUNNING PLANS: Talks By Warren Ellis is a book of talks collected as essays by Warren Ellis who’s best known for his work in comics. Ellis has a knack for describing the times we live in from almost a future historical perspective. He comments on are everyday mundane things from cell phones to Instagram to traveling. But it’s how he sees them that’s so unique.

“Our ghosts are our history. Their voices are what we learn from. Our rituals are our methods, and our castings and workings are our scientific experiments, magical practices to learn the true names of things that mane the world. Because, in magic, when you name something you can control it.” — Warren Ellis

Apps

For the last few months I’ve been writing most everything in Scrivener using Markdown. I like how Scrivener organizes everything — I have one document for these Direct Beam Comms articles, one for my 2016 columns, one for random stuff… — and how I can export the finished product in just about any format I want.

And Markdown, a “…text-to-HTML conversion tool for web writers…” is a nice way for me to format copy without having to worry about future-proofing my work. I’ve spent a lot of time over the past few years trying to figure this out. If I save everything as a Word DOC and in 20 years there’s no easy way to open the files then I’m screwed. What I’ve been doing over the last five years is saving all my work as rich text format (RTF) figuring that while this might not be the best way to save things, it’s got to be better than the proprietary Word format. Then I thought about saving out everything as HTML files, since those are essentially easily readable text files that anyone at any time in the future will be able to open.

Scrivener solves all these problems for me. I write things once using Markdown and then can export into whatever file format fits my preference. I’ll usually export a RTF if the piece is being published somewhere else and HTML so I can copy and past this content into my website. But I can also save PDFs, ebooks or a host of other file formats too.