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(01-09-2020, 08:54 PM)Bob Schroeck Wrote: [ -> ]Okay, another request.  Not for the fic, specifically, as I know right where to find it, but for a copy in a specific format:

Would anyone happen to know where I can find an HTML or .MOBI copy of John Biles' The Dance of Shiva?
If you happen to have a Spacebattles account, you could ask him directly.
46 minutes ago

> Itsune said:
> Do you happen to have an HTML or .mobi format of Dance of Shiva somewhere?
> Bob Schroeck who runs the Drunkard's Walk fanfiction forum on Access Denied is asking.

The place where I have kept Dance of Shiva archived for many years is permanently down and I am trying to figure out where to put it all now. That being said, it exists mainly as textfiles originally written on an editor in UNIX in the 90s. I can potentially mail someone text files.

"WHISKEY FUELED VIOLENCE HERE I COME!" Dash shouted, heading for the wine cellar.
--My(stara's) Little Ponies: Friendship is Adventuring
(MLP: FIM and D&D world of Mystara)
I'm going to believe that this is not what you are looking for, 'cause all it is, is the old .txt files with a pre-formated Markup tag...
well, you are correct that that is a html format, Itsune. I am not as convinced it is what Bob can use?

Then again... it is me we are talking about. The bloke what totally misunderstood what more than one person has told me in the past.
The reason I don't think it's what Bob is looking for is that the text lines have the individual linebreaks encoded into the text instead of the now standard wrap around style.
and those don't work well with a smartphone's Browser, or other E-pub device. ...
Yeah, basically. I actually have the maison-otaku page open in my browser at home, but I wanted something marked up so I could get it into my Kindle. (Secondary reason: to make it more convenient to read and track tropes for an ATT page.) Guess I'm going to have to do it myself (and then I can give it to Biles for his use).

Thanks all.
From my own previous experience, using a global search and replace for the paragraph indent's number of spaces to "<p>," minimal tags at the beginning and end, and renaming the text file to the html extension mostly works fine - html rendering ignores line breaks in the input file without tags to make it pay attention. At most you might need another search and replace on newline/carriage return to add a space if there aren't any at the end of each line.
Oh yeah, I've done this kind of thing before. Lots, actually -- I write all of DW in plaintext and already have macros built to convert it. It's not a terrible task, just one I didn't want to do if I didn't have to.
Well, once you're don with doing that Send a copy of the amended file to JohnWBiles on Spacebattles.
Okay, this wasn't a fanfic but a short story published in some anthology I read in the late 80s to early 90s, though the tone of the story was pulp sci-fi that could have been written anytime from the rockets-and-ray-guns 50s boom on. In it, the crew of a ship are getting ready to return from a long patrol mission and are going through the checklist of ship's stores and equipment because they know the bean counters will demand that all the numbers match up. Using up or trading away any luxury items that might not be quite in line with regulations but "somehow" managed to wind up on board, swapping some "extra" spare parts for useless stuff that's still on the list due to bureaucratic inertia or politics, making sure the still is properly disassembled and the parts properly redistributed or disposed of, performance increasing work-arounds returned to spec, all that kind of thing.

Then, they run into a list item that no one in the compartment it's supposed to be in recognizes. They try talking to the signals department, 'cause that stuff is all over the ship, but no dice. They try life support, the same. They call up the captain and admit to the problem, but he's never heard of it either. I don't remember if they had some kind of library computer or microfiche or whatever, but if so, it was checked to no avail. Eventually, they figure if no one knows what it is anyway, they might as well invent something and try to bluff past it, so one of the electronics guys rigs up a pair of gravity sensors and a comparison circuit to measure the gradient between them, allegedly to ease navigation, they put a check-mark on the list and call it done.

Some time after the ship puts in, some official gets into flustered contact, demanding to know who came up with this device. Bluff check apparently failed, the skipper (I think?) begins to explain the real story, but is cut off and told they don't care about that, they want the schematics and operating notes, and why it wasn't reported earlier as it is fantastically useful.

I think the unknown inventory item turns out to have been some obtuse abbreviation for the official ship's dog, but might have that conflated with another story or version that starts much the same but is shorter, leaving out the bits about inventing a new device in favour of saying the "offog" (that one I remember well, having encountered it repeatedly while looking for the more involved yarn) broke up under drive strain while travelling around some gas giant and the remains disposed of, leading to a fleet-wide emergency order to put in to port while exactly how that happened is investigated, much to the crew's chagrin.

I may have asked about this before, for that matter. It comes to mind every few years and bugs me for a few days before I get sufficiently distracted again.
First off I want you to know I hate you...

This is much worse than mentioning a song that you can't get out of your head.

This is as bad as a mentioning or playing a snippet of a incredible song I heard once on a AM radio station that faded out mid way through the song and I have never heard the song or any part of it since or even been able to get a hint of a name or other detail to search with.

Come to think of it, but it might have been your fault the last time I spent quite a few hours searching for that science fiction collection.

I have not thought of this story and several other short stories I think were grouped with it in the anthology for several years, now you have brought the memories back and I'll have to start hunting for it all over again.

I'm pretty sure I read them in a hard back version of the anthology back in the early 90's or possibly the very late 80's. I can even tell you which library the book was at at the time and I know for a certainty that it isn't there now because someone checked it out and never returned it.

I am very sorry that I don't remember the name of the anthology.

The two short stories I think I remember best along with the one you describe are very roughly(it has been over 25 years.) listed below.

Was a story about a movie house filiming a series of "Flash Gordon" style shows in which two famous actors were playing rival parts. One was the villian and the other was the good guy and both were very competitive. One of the actors that was slightly less well billed convinced the prop department to give him a ray gun that had an actual "flash" even before post editing. This led to a "arms race" between the two for the bigger "FLASH" until finally one actor and the prop department went all out and built a "real" looking disintagrating ray gun that was wheeled around in a modified little red wagon and had a hidden power cord going to one of the studio's plugs usually used for 1000 watt spot lights.

The only thing that saved the Hero and the film crew was the standard villian monolog and demonstratiion of what his "death ray" would do before he actually attempted to use it on the Hero.

They released smoke because this raygun had a built in spotlight, the villian gave his speech and used the knife switch to "fire" the raygun.

The resulting flash had everyone seeing spots for several minutes so it was a several seconds before anyone notice the "Light Beam" had removed a 8 foot diameter section of the painted wood and cardboard scenery along with an equal amount of the brick wall behind it followed by parts of both "stars" cars length wise followed a few hundred feet later by the bottom 8 feet of several dozen trees before drilling quite a ways into the rook of a hill.

The show folded a few days later when the military paid for the damage and dissapeared the studio's entire prop department and the Actor playing the villian.

Was a story about a group of science fiction writers and physic professors approached by the military during world war two. They were worried about HItler's talk of super weapons and wanted to distract the Nazi's researchers with stolen fictional super weapons that looked real, but couldn't possibly work.

The group created plans for a death ray, antigrave and a homing plasma antiaircraft weapon, the military fed the "stolen" fictional plans to the unspecting Nazi's.

A year later the narrator along with all other members of the group were called back in by a very grim faced general who questioned them heavily about the death ray, seems a spy flight over a known Nazi research center showed a large "contraption" very much like the fictional death ray, but the crew also noticed that the nearby mountain it was pointed had several new HUGE smooth notches sliced out of the peak.

There was a desperate bombing raid ordered, but all the aircraft returned reporting that the site was already a very large crater in the location of the research center.


I hope these two additions help, I would really like to find that anthology as well

H Melton

God Bless
Huh. None of these are at all familiar, sorry.
Even worse, I'm pretty sure I'd remember at least the WWII one, so it was probably a different anthology (possibly built on a theme of accidental inventions from the sound of things.) I'm not even sure what format the book was, to be honest, could have been a pocket or trade paperback or ... I forget the technical name for it, but the size between TPB and letter paper, that a lot of hardcovers are published in, but still paperback and a couple inches thick, some kind of "best F&SF short stories of the year" omnibus, that I had two or three consecutive years of around that time. Wouldn't have been a library book, school or town, because SF was practically nonexistent on the shelves of those in favor of high fantasy, spy thrillers, mysteries, and romance. (Or as my younger self thought of them, "blah, bleh, yecch, and eww" Big Grin I still go for the last chapter first if I'm by some foul machination coerced to read a mystery novel...)
(01-29-2020, 01:41 PM)classicdrogn Wrote: [ -> ]Okay, this wasn't a fanfic but a short story published in some anthology I read in the late 80s to early 90s

It's "Allamagoosa" by Erik Frank Russel, winner of the 1955 short story Hugo Award.

You can read it at Baen Books: https://www.baen.com/Chapters/1439133476...76___3.htm
(01-29-2020, 05:59 PM)hmelton Wrote: [ -> ]FIRST
Was a story about a movie house filiming a series of "Flash Gordon" style shows in which two famous actors were playing rival parts. One was the villian and the other was the good guy and both were very competitive. One of the actors that was slightly less well billed convinced the prop department to give him a ray gun that had an actual "flash" even before post editing. This led to a "arms race" between the two for the bigger "FLASH" until finally one actor and the prop department went all out and built a "real" looking disintagrating ray gun that was wheeled around in a modified little red wagon and had a hidden power cord going to one of the studio's plugs usually used for 1000 watt spot lights.

I'm quite sure this one is Arthur Clarke's "Armaments Race" , from "Tales from the White Hart"
(01-29-2020, 07:53 PM)nemonowan Wrote: [ -> ]It's "Allamagoosa" by Erik Frank Russel, winner of the 1955 short story Hugo Award.

You can read it at Baen Books: https://www.baen.com/Chapters/1439133476...76___3.htm

Huh, must have read something (ahem) "inspired" by it the way the standard high fantasy setting is "inspired" by JRR Tolkien, I guess, because I very specifically remember the MacGuffin device ending up being an actual breakthrough improvement. That doesn't make it any less entertaining an old spacer's yarn, of course. Thanks nemonowan!
THANKS! nemonowan

"Armaments Race" by Arthur clark is one of the stories, I mentioned, boy has my memory drifted, hopefully it just because of the many fanfic ideas I have loosely based on what I remembered, but "Armaments Race" is definately one of the stories from the collection that I think holds what Classicdrogn described.

"Allamagoosa" by Erik Frank Russel isn't something I think I've seen before, it had me laughing especially at the end, but all the stories I remember from the anthology or collection had a supposedly fictional or fake devices turned out to be actual working inventions.

The story Classicdrogn mentioned seems very close, but I'm also pretty sure the fake invention actually worked in the story I read in another collection.

I don't think "Allamagoosa" would have been in that collection of "real" fake invention stories, it didn't have the right ending.

Classicdrogn mentioned something that jogged my memory and I've been doing a little searching on the internet and another of the stories I remember being in the collection was "Waldo" by R. A. Heinlein published in 1950

Classicdrogn now is your chance to return the hate for me.

Unlike you for about 8 years In the late 80's and early 90's thanks to two libraries and several book stores I had access to a huge collection of science fiction classics and most all modern science fiction published in the english language during that period.

Back in the late 1980's and early 1990's the local University Library had a huge and slowly growing collection of hard back science fiction books, mostly from 1985 back and while it was 60 miles from our farm there was a public library at the halfway point that was the central office library for several local county librariess and I somehow became a friend to the head librarian and the several other librarians that worked there and were in charge of finding books for it and most of the other libraries for a large area.

The head librarian knew of my interest in science fiction and the fact that I regularly hit close to a dozen new and used book stores every month.

It started out with me doing her a favor and hunting out replacement books for westerns, romance novels and mysteries after some barbarian back in 1985 started slicing out carefully selected pages and passages leaving the reader with what they considered to be the key parts missing.(I can't stand most westerns, Mysteries and romance novels, but mutilate or burn books and I have about the same reaction to that as any true librarian.)

Soon I was also helping the librarians find/pick what science fiction to purchase and helping them to create a far larger collection of modern science fiction by finding libarary quality books for half price or less in the new and used book stores I regularly visited.

Yes, Classicdrogn during the late 1980's and early 1990's between the public library I was helping and the University library as well as the several new and many used bookstores I essentially had free or quarter price access to every english science fiction book published during that eight year period and before. (Sadly I never had enough time to read more than a fraction of the science fiction that passed though or very close to my hands.)

Starting in late 1993 I had to focus almost completely on the family farm for a period of 3 or 4 years and during that time things changed radically in the local book world.

My library cards lapsed, there were several deaths, retirements and many store closings to the point when I "came back" the University library and public library had few of the book collections I remembered and 3/4 or more of the used books stores were closed or pale shadows of what they had been.

The University library had fully switched from card catalogs to digital during this period and it looks like some group took the chance to gut the universities collections and leave no record of what it had held.

It had lost an appalling number of books across every section not just in the science fiction section.

Thinking about what vanished still makes me really angry at the University. Some of the best written history books i'd ever read most of which had been publushed in the 1880's to about 1910 had vanished. The classic fiction works were gutted including what I remember as being one of the most complete set of Mark Twains writing I had ever heard about and it was all signed by him.

Thanks Classicdrogn for your fiction search post , it has at least led to me to finding some works I'd not seen in years and just as importantly it has highlighted to a really funny science fiction story that I had missed.

Nah, their fiction section may not have moved me, but the town library was awesome, all man-sized granite blocks and greek columns outside, yellow-pink polished marble on the inside with solid, chunky hardwood shelves and tables inside... and this in a town that barely broke a population in five digits, thanks to endowments from a rich guy back in the Roaring 20s. (The local Junior High School had the same.) I was friendly with the librarian too, if not to the point of influencing the collection. I still love that library smell, to the point I'll take laptop or a handheld device and find a reading chair in one of the more remote corners to perch and just enjoy being surrounded by books even as I stay glued to a digital screen to actually read.
Looking for a Harry Potter AU starting on book five. The details are as follow:

—During the dementor attack on Privet Drive Harry cannot get his wand back and both him and Dudley get their soul sucked by dementors.

—Sometime later, after the dementors are gone, the piece of Voldemort inside the scar takes over Harry’s body, disappears and starts laying the groundwork for his comeback.

—Meanwhile, thanks to the Dursley’s referring to him as a criminal, the police consider him a suspect in Dudley’s death.

—No one has seen Harry anywhere in the Wizarding world since that night.

—Voldemort hears rumors of another Voldemort running around. A clash between them seems imminent.

—Dumbledore and the Order are desperately looking for Harry.

It’s been a couple of years and I don’t remember the title.
It's a Potter fic and I think it was on Spacebattles. It's set before the events in the books and possibly before the marauder era.

A British spy agency notices something odd when the child of someone looking for a security clearance has disappeared from the system. They've stumbled across the Wizarding World and go about a subtle low key infiltration.

It's got a scene where the guy in charge is reading a copy of the Quibler for entertainment, and also an agent is recruiting a wizard as a contact by pretending to be a fellow Ravenclaw.
I don't know the fic, but it sounds like it's at least worth a first date if someone can broker an introduction.
agreed, i have no clue what it is, but it sounds interesting
I've done some more searching and I think I found it.


Having read it, I'm not sure. Possibly I'm getting some parts I thought were part of it confused with other fics.
Huh. I just started reading that out of curiosity and it seems terribly familiar, like I've read it before. But I don't actually recognize it, if that makes any sense.
The bits that were described sounded like they could have been part of Old Soldiers Never Die, by Roschach's Blot I think? Except that that is firmly in Harry's timeframe, what would be fifth or sixth year if not for doing a mic drop in the first chapter. The part where the mundane intelligence service are quite aware of the magical world and have various assets tasked with trying (with more or less success, but far more than the MoM is aware of or would be happy about) to keep an eye on the "funny hats," at least. I haven't started on the one linked above yet, but if that impression holds true it may be what you're thinking of, or similar "doing things the muggle way" stories.
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