• Fiona McIntosh: Voyager Author of the Month

    Fiona McIntosh was born and raised in Sussex in the UK, but also spent early childhood years in West Africa. She left a PR career in London to travel and settled in Australia in 1980. She has since roamed the world working for her own travel publishing company, which she runs with her husband. She lives in Adelaide with her husband and twin sons. Her website is at www.fionamcintosh.com.

    Her latest book, The Scrivener's Tale, is a stand-alone and takes us back to the world of Morgravia from her very first series, The Quickening:

    About The Scrivener's Tale:

    In the bookshops and cafes of present-day Paris, ex-psychologist Gabe Figaret is trying to put his shattered life back together. When another doctor, Reynard, asks him to help with a delusional female patient, Gabe is reluctant... until he meets her. At first Gabe thinks the woman, Angelina, is merely terrified of Reynard, but he quickly discovers she is not quite what she seems.

    As his relationship with Angelina deepens, Gabe's life in Paris becomes increasingly unstable. He senses a presence watching and following every move he makes, and yet he finds Angelina increasingly irresistible.

    When Angelina tells Gabe he must kill her and flee to a place she calls Morgravia, he is horrified. But then Angelina shows him that the cathedral he has dreamt about since childhood is real and exists in Morgravia.

    A special 10th Anniversary edition of her first fantasy book, Myrren's Gift, will be released in December!



Nerd Rage!

A friend of mine is a big Superman fan and was outraged when pictures surfaced of the new Superman costume in Zack Snyder’s upcoming Man of Steel. The costume doesn’t have the iconic red underwear on the outside!  He’s been surprisingly civil in his outbursts so far, but I just know that underneath it all simmers a boiling pot of black rage. I, for example, I find it INCONCEIVABLE that any self respecting person would not have read The Hobbit, seen Star Wars or played with LEGO as a child. And yet such people exist, in defiance of my entirely reasonable expectations.

I’ve  witnessed similar traits at a convention I went to recently where a model of Saruman’s tower from Lord of the Rings was labelled “Isengard”.  A young teenager then came up and began berating the maker of the model because the tower is called Orthanc, Isengard is the name of the compound it sits in. HOW COULD YOU POSSIBLY NOT KNOW THAT?!?

The bane of any any fan’s life is when someone else refuses to understand the object of their fandom. When they stare back at you blindly, blinking like an uncomprehending farm animal.  Previously restricted to loungerooms, cinema foyers, bookstores and conventions, NerdRage can now be witnessed in almost any online setting.

This type of NerdRage stems from, in part at least, the incredible dissemination of knowledge and culture that the Internet has enabled. It also comes from the fact that the Internet has enabled us to more easily find people interested in the same things, no matter how niche. As a result people are increasingly surrounded by like minded people interested in the same things, be it knitting anime characters, writing erotic Harry Potter fan fiction, swooning over fictional characters, or discussing Voyager books.

Go on.Take the bait.

    People, and I include myself here, therefore are becoming less tolerant of ignorance. Some become just intolerant in general, but I like to think most nerd/geeks are a pretty accepting lot. That said, the very definition of “nerd” or “geek” has broadened to encompass all kinds of specialist knowledge and many now self apply what was in school a derogatory slur. Hell, chunky glasses, once the signifier of visually impaired nerds the world over, are now being worn as lens-less fashion statements by hipster hotties.

Another type of NerdRage comes from when the creative folks decide to change an aspect of our fan-object. Like removing Superman’s underpants ( away with you, filthy minded fanfic writers! ), killing off our favourite character in Book 4, or not including the Scouring of the Shire in the Lord of the Rings movies. In the new hyper-engaged world of teh Interwebz nerd/geek fans have developed  a greater voice that the creators of our beloved books, characters, TV shows, movies or toys, are increasingly actually listening to.

   Now don’t get me wrong, I think this is a good thing! But it can help foster a sense of entitlement that we don’t always deserve. After all, we didn’t spend months of our lives writing stories and characters, or weeks of 15hr days shooting a TV show. But what is art without someone to witness it? I sometimes wonder that the super-connected world of the 21st century will not allow the idealistic tenant of “art for art’s sake”  to exist, because if something new isn’t popular it will be shouted down.

So I guess that’s the conundrum; we both need NerdRage to keep individual voices loud and proud, but that same rage can keep us from embracing anything new or different. End rant.

12 Responses

  1. Hahaha I know this well. My boss has never seen Star Wars!!! I was like what the.. then she said Star Wars and Star Trek are the same. I nearly fell down. Sometimes when you talk to people about what you think are completely normal subjects, they look at you as you said ‘ blindly, blinking like an uncomprehending farm animal.’ and you are stunned to see they don’t know or care what you are talking about.

    It’s annoying when they leave out parts or misrepresent things cause it is a big part of the culture and what draws us to a praticular product to begin with, but you do have to roll with the punches sometimes and just accept it( as hard as it is)

    But really, Superman needs his undies on outside for it to be Superman!

    • Star Wars and Star Trek are the same. Wow! It’s like saying football and soccer are the same, I guess, only in that case it’s true, right?


    • Hah, well, if you think leaving the underpants off is annoying, you don’t even want to know what they almost did with Superman.

      The whole story used to be available online, but I can’t seem to find it any more so here’s an extract: http://gerrycanavan.wordpress.com/2005/11/27/superman-v-the-whole-sordid-saga/

      The original, complete article was at least 5000 words long, and if even half of it is true… yikes.

      • Yeesh! Some people.. raGE BUILDING! I’ve heard some of that before. Kevin Smith is full of hilariously tragic stories of Hollywood insanity. There’s a DVD of his stand up Q&A sessions called “An Evening with Kevin Smith” ( followed up by the slightly less interesting, but brilliantly titled ” An Evening with Kevin Smith 2: Evening Harder” ) where he talks about a lot of this stuff. But the last line is right. Its hard to do Superman because he IS an icon. With so much history and so many people invested in their own experienced versions of him, its almost impossible to just “do” Superman; you’ll inevitably induce nerd rage somewhere!

  2. This is a fabulous post! Thank you!

    I particularly like the dilemma between what is art without someone to witness it? and ‘Art for art’s sake’. Where indeed is the boundary, or participation, between the two?

    • Thanks Kim! It took me a while to find the point I wanted to make- it took me back to writing essays at uni 🙂 . It goes back to the fundamental paradox of the internet; that many of us spend so much time chatting to people online, while we sit alone in front of a screen.The internet has given us so many new ways to communicate I think our brains and or language are still trying to catch up in some ways.

  3. Hahaha, this post cracked me up!

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