International Pixel-Stained Technopeasant Day followup
- From: John Mark Ockerbloom <ockerblo@[redacted]>
- Subject: International Pixel-Stained Technopeasant Day followup
- Date: Tue, 01 May 2007 16:14:30 -0400
I mentioned International Pixel-Stained Technopeasant Day a couple of
weeks back. This was a holiday declared by author Jo Walton in response to an
article by an outgoing SF Writers of America VP complaining about people
giving away works online for free, saying it promoted "Pixel-stained
Technopeasant Wretch[es]". Jo's idea was that anyone who wished to
could participate by giving away professional-quality work online
on or near that day.
(Interestingly enough, it turns out that this was the same day as the UN's
"World Book and Copyright Day", though I don't think she had realized that
I wasn't able to list anything on the day itself, being busy at
conferences, but I later found out that Duck Peterson had compiled
a directory of works given away by folks for IPSTPD. You can
check it out at
Most of what's on here represent short stories, poems, and the like, but
there are a few books in there as well, including one previously
published book by IPSTPD instigator Jo Walton. I haven't read it yet,
but I was quite impressed by her more recent novel _Farthing_, which has
been nominated for the Nebula and Locus awards. She's also been active
online for some time; several years ago, for instance, some years back
she wrote the ditty "The Lurkers Support Me in Email", which has been
widely quoted in years since (often without attribution).
I listed a few IPSTPD books on April 25 (see the New Books listing
of the Online Books Page). There's at least one other book in Dusk's
directory that might qualify, but the PDF came out as gibberish when I tried
to open it. This usually happens because a PDF document refers to a font
that's on the author's computer but not in the PDF file itself, and
no backup font is specified for people who don't have the
same font-set as the author does.
This occasionally happens with PDF books I hear about. If anyone
knows of a good primer I can point online book preparers to when this
happens on their files, I'd love to hear about it. (Yes, I can say "Embed
your fonts", but a lot of people don't know what that means or how to do it.
A beginner's guide would be helpful.)
Many of the works listed are related somehow to science fiction, fantasy,
or horror, which is not surprising given where the idea for IPSTPD came from.
There's also a lot of SF going online from other sources, both relatively
new, from places like the Baen Free Library. and old, from places like
Greg Weeks' Durendal site and Project Gutenberg, in these cases mostly
republishing works that did not have their copyrights renewed as required.
I haven't been able to reach durendal.org for the last few days-- anyone
know what happened to it?-- but most of the material there was ultimately
destined for Gutenberg, which seems to have by now picked up even more than
what I'd been listing at Durendal. I'll try to adjust my links, and list
more SF Gutenberg has provided from the same authors, over the next couple