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Comment Archives: stories: Books

Re: “Sometimes There's a Girl

This girl is going to run the world someday. She's so, so smart. Excellent interview, Alison!

3 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by Melogna on 11/08/2013 at 12:24 PM

Re: “Dawkins Almighty

@HIT: Your lucky I didn't break out the word hagiography.

1 like, 2 dislikes
Posted by Graham on 10/14/2013 at 11:33 AM

Re: “Dawkins Almighty

I don't think it was that bad, Graham.

I'm pretty sure you just wanted to use 'obsequiousness' in a sentence. (Me, too -- that was fun just now.)

Well, good work, sir -- you nailed it. Now on to 'plebiscite', followed by 'quiddity'. Good luck to you.

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by human in training on 10/11/2013 at 2:10 PM

Re: “Dawkins Almighty

The level of obsequiousness in this review is embarrassing for everyone involved.

0 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Graham on 10/10/2013 at 1:30 PM

Re: “Murder in Nebraska

questions about the review-

the victim "is found burned alive". So did they survive?

Also why do the sows have distrust?

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by i'mrightyourwrong on 10/02/2013 at 5:35 AM

Re: “War Torn

Fantastic book. I couldn't put it down. Great review but, she's Liberian...not Libyan.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Bigreader on 07/31/2013 at 4:37 PM

Re: “The Kids Are Catatonic

That wasn't posted at 12:07 that was posted at 3:07

Posted by Roxanne Palladino on 06/14/2013 at 12:08 PM

Re: “The Kids Are Catatonic


2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Roxanne Palladino on 06/14/2013 at 12:07 PM

Re: “Mormon Humdrum

Sergeant Grumbles, everybody.

Posted by Naomi Sweo on 05/29/2013 at 8:21 PM

Re: “Mormon Humdrum

Using shallow depth of field is actually meant to make foreground elements stand out from the background, not blend in.

0 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by sgtgrumbles on 05/27/2013 at 3:00 PM

Re: “Intergalactic, Planetary

John Harris.

Posted by disastronaut on 05/21/2013 at 9:08 PM

Re: “Intergalactic, Planetary

The cover art looks very familiar, is credit listed ? Who is it?

Posted by The Showstopper on 05/21/2013 at 12:31 PM

Re: “10-Year Itch

I really love this critique! I am an organizer for the Portland Zine Symposium that first started by volunteering at Stumptown Comics Fest and then PZS 8 years ago... Alison puts it very well, listing reasons I stopped volunteering for SCF and devoted myself to PZS in a way that's always been a struggle for me to articulate.

I feel I watched SCF tailspin from what I thought it was (based on it's marketing when I first heard of it)... A community event focused on indie creators. I also feel that I watched people in "power" in the SCF ranks take advantage of the disorganization of SCF for the sake of their personal and selfish goals. As an organizer of a different convention, I saw the prices of event spaces while searching for new homes for PZS, and I was baffled at the way prices for SCF increased for a table... As well as increases in fees just to get in the door! It didn't add up for a "non profit." With PZS, I saw that they did not do that because PZS was started as a non profit with firm community roots and listens to our community's feedback, there is a real accountability going on... I gave up on SCF and devoted myself to PZS because I saw that it was really working to serve independent press and community. Our fest is FREE to attend, we have a year-long schedule of community-building and fund-raising events, we follow press release guidelines by the merc because we care about people reading about our events, we don't allow publishers to have 4 tables and the symposium, we attend other community events to table and reach out to new fans, etc...

I have a lot of hopes for Shawna Gore taking over as director, however, as I am acquainted with her and she seems very selfless, very driven, and very ethical. So, I am hoping critiques, like what Alison has written here, don't fall on deaf ears. As SCF becomes a non profit and is run by more accountable people, we may see it change. I think this is the chance for SCF to reform and get into actually being a sustainable, creator-driven fest... Not a fest straddling the line between fanboys and indie-lovers trying to desperately sustain itself as it passes hands between power-tripping organizers. I am interested in going to see if a tablet device has a booth or how many booths the Dark Horse company has, but maybe if SCF will start keeping that space open for local creators of awesome comics. And, if it does not manage to weed out some of the profit-driven commercialism this year, maybe it will next year, when the organizational legs are more stable. SCF has a lot to recover from. Maybe it will be a fest I am interested attending in the future, much less in tabling at some time again in the future.

5 likes, 10 dislikes
Posted by Christina Blue Crow on 04/24/2013 at 3:56 PM

Re: “10-Year Itch

I'd like to present another possible solution to the venue size issue that Alison brings up:

I can see the option of scaling back down to a smaller venue like YU (which is pretty great) being resisted for multiple reasons, one of which could be the appearance of having not been able to "make it" at the bigger venue. Whether that's a fair read to make or not, (I personally don't agree) I can see people making it, and it would make sense to try and avoid that perception if possible.

But maybe instead of scaling down the whole festival, maybe scale up the ambition in deciding which guests to go after. This years lineup is great, but would anticipation for this weekend be just a little bit increased if they could have scored two or three of the following names in addition?

Brian K. Vaughn/Pia Guerra
Matt Fraction
Brian Michael Bendis
Jeff Smith
Frank Miller (It'd be a spectacle, definitely)
Chris Roberson
Scott McCloud
Kevin Eastman/Peter Laird
Alan Moore
Neil Gaiman
Jeff Lemire
Mike Mignola
Kieron Gillen/Jamie McKelvie
Kate Beaton

I mean, yeah - that's a wishlist, definitely, but some of those names have been panelists/guests before, and probably would be again, as some of them live near here/have connections to this city. But still, I recognize there are costs incurred beyond me just sitting here and dreaming up names of comics creators that I think could draw crowds. You gotta pay for those people to come out, you gotta pay to put em up, all that stuff. It's not as easy as just dropping an email into their inbox and crossing your fingers. It'd be unfair to suggest otherwise.

But if staying at the Convention Center is the current plan, I don't see how pursuing names like the ones above (and there are plenty more) is out-of-the-question. And honestly, it could be the case that those plans are already being made.

10 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Bobby Roberts on 04/24/2013 at 3:42 PM

Re: “Mommy Wars

I like the phrase "narrative eddies." Also, without having read the thing, I agree in advance that those character names don't work. It still sounds like an enjoyable read.

I wonder indeed if someone somewhere is going to hate it just because it's only about white people...even though that would make it a fairly realistic portrayal of Portland. I suspect the same person who would level that criticism is also the first person to call bullshit if Monica Drake decided her narrators should be an Eritrean family from Lents. Hehhh...

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by rich bachelor on 04/11/2013 at 3:35 PM

Re: “Smallpressapalooza

hahaha-- Janey is a guy, first off. And the Merc has been great at covering all types of literary events in Portland. Cheers to Hallett for pointing out that women STILL don't get an equal voice in literature.

2 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by carrieseitzinger on 03/18/2013 at 1:29 PM

Re: “Smallpressapalooza

Is it cool to snack there?

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Michael Herman on 03/15/2013 at 7:08 PM

Re: “Inspiration / Intoxication

aggh fixed!

Posted by Alison Hallett on 03/15/2013 at 5:09 PM

Re: “Smallpressapalooza

Yes: it's totally super feminist to only review female authors that come pre-approved by Kevin Sampsell at Powell's, and to only cover literary events that happen at Powell's. That bookstore also happens to be the place where I regularly purchase books that have been sold by the Mercury to Powell's. You are ridiculous, and should be ashamed.

4 likes, 11 dislikes
Posted by pretentiousliteraryreference on 03/14/2013 at 8:41 PM

Re: “Inspiration / Intoxication

The patches say "League of Adult Babysitters" - not "bartenders". Cool that she's able to quit bartending and pursue illustration full time! Great work!!

Posted by ROM on 03/14/2013 at 2:40 PM

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