This week I haven’t had much time for fiction reading. It’s the end of our financial year here in Oz and the powers that be in my workplace require all manner of charts, reports and graphs to be produced as evidence of the fact we’re all busy and important which has severely impacted my reading time. I have finished Black Ice by Leah Giarratano but as it will be officially released on Wednesday I’ll save my review for then.
The internet has provided me with brief escapes into sensible and/or entertaining reading though. What did people do for a 10 minute respite from spreadsheets full of figures before the Internet came along?
The stuff that got me thinking about things other than pie charts this week included:
- The troubling issue of territorial copyright for local authors was highlighted by Tim Winton during his acceptance speech for the 2009 Miles Franklin Award. For those not in the know, the Australian Government’s Productivity Commission is reviewing the existing rules for parallel imports of books and local writers could be in real trouble. As a reader I am conflicted by this because of course I’d love cheaper books on the shelves but it’s hard not to be convinced by Winton’s impassioned plea and I’d hate to see Aussie writers suffer. The issue has led to some surprising gimmicks including deliveries of cheap books to all our Federal politicians but I’m not sure how much genuine debate there has been in the public sphere.
- Maxine at Petrona took a break from crime fiction this week to ponder the future of science journalism. It’s a great post that rounds up some excellent links on a subject which has broader implications for all journalism. As a news junkie from way back I always find this subject interesting.
- On Friday Tim Bowden encapsulated beautifully the feelings of those who, like myself, aren’t interested in football. It’s not that I mind people having different interests to me, it’s the impossible to escape ‘everywhereness’ of it for the entire season that makes me weary. There’s nothing quite so depressing on a Sunday night as the prospect of my regular Monday morning meeting with my fellow managers all of whom are footy fans. All that chatter about who kicked what and which team got bad treatment by the umpires I fantasize about an alternate universe where footy doesn’t exist.
- For Agatha Christie fans Kerrie at Mysteries in Paradise has tackled the subject of who has portrayed the best Miss Marple on TV or film to coincide with the latest incarnation (in Australia a series of TV movies starring Julia McKenzie as Miss Marple has just started airing). There’s a poll on the subject plus a post which has generated much discussion. Great fun indeed.
- And just because I can’t escape charts entirely I did laugh out loud at this one on Graph Jam this week (no offence meant to all the Twilight fans but it does sum up my feelings on the subject very well) (and I must give another nod to Maxine at Petrona who first pointed me to this site a few weeks ago).
Back to the pie charts for me now. Hope the rest of you have a better Sunday than I’m going to.