Holmes, Hitchcock, ghosts and Gaiman, oh my!

It’s time to kick-off another week of fabulous story-telling in voice, brought to Second Life by the staff and volunteers at the Seanchai Library. and Seanchai Kitely.

As always, all times SLT / PDT, and unless otherwise stated, events will be held on the Seanchai Library’s home on Imagination Island.

Sunday October 12th

13:30: Tea-time at Baker Street: The Hound of the Baskervilles

Caledonia Skytower, Corwyn Allen and Kayden Oconnell invite you to join them as they turn the lights down low, stoke the fire against the surrounding darkness and continue to bring us what is quite possibly the most famous of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s works.

Baskervilles-1902The third full-length novel written about Sherlock Holmes, The Hound of the Baskervilles is likely to be a tale – at least in outline – unfamiliar to a very few. Adapted more than 20 times for film and television down the decades, starting with the 1914/15 4-part series, Der Hund von Baskerville, in addition to be adapted for radio, the story has likely reached a huge audience down the years.

But how many are familiar with the original? Adaptations, after all, pick and choose elements of a story they wish to take, some add their own twists and turns quite outside of Conan Doyle’s plot in order to keep their offering fresh and exciting to an audience. Others – such as Paul McGuigan’s The Hounds of Baskerville, featured in the BBC’s brilliant Sherlock series – draw inspiration from this tale of dark happenings at Baskerville Hall, ancient curses and more, but take their story in wholly different directions to those imagined by Conan Doyle.

So why not join Cale, Corwyn and Kayden as they continue reading from the original, first published in 1902, and discover just how Sir Arther Conan Doyle unfolded this apparently supernatural tale of giant hounds and murder, and the pivotal role played by John Watson himself?

18:00 Magicland Storytime

Join Caledonia Skytower, as she delved into Cat Tales at Magicland Park.

Monday October 13th, 19:00: The Witches of Karres

witches of KarresGyro Muggins once again delves into James H. Schmitz’s mix of space opera, hard science-fiction and fantasy, all mixed together with a flavouring of humour. The original story, a novella, was first published in 1949, and 1996, Schmitz expanded it into a full-length novel with three further adventures, prior to the series spinning-off into two additional novels, The Wizard of Karres (2004), by Mercedes Lackey, Eric Flint, and Dave Freer, and The Sorceress of Karres (2010), again by Flint and Freer.

There’s an old saying that no good deed ever goes unpunished. Such is the case for Captain Pausert, inexperienced space trader, skipper (and sole crew member) of the old Venture. He’s just starting to feel he might make it as a trader dealing in cargo no-one else will handle when he is persuaded to take aboard three young girls who had been enslaved on the planet Porlumma.

Turns out the young girls are not quite what they seem, and hail from the forbidden world of Karres and possess psionic powers. As a result, Pausert finds himself arrested on his return home and regarded as a criminal within the Empire. If that’s not bad enough, once freed by one of the young girls in return for his good deed of rescuing her and her sisters, the poor novice Captain discovers he’s out of the frying pan and into the fire, subject to pursuit not only by the Empire, but also the less-than-friendly Sirians, psychopathic Uldanians, space pirates, and even the darkest of all threats to humankind – the Worm World.

Tuesday October 14th,19:00 The Spooky and the Lyrical

October Poetry with Luna Branwen and Caledonia Skytower.

Wednesday October 15th, 19:00: Bellwether

  Constance Elaine Trimmer “Connie” Willis is an American science fiction writer. She is one of the most honored science fiction writers of the 1980s and 1990s. Her books have between them won 11 Hugo awards, seven Nebula awards and four Locus awards, making her the recipient of more major science-fiction awards than any other author.

Bellwether, published in 1996, was a Nebula ward nominee, brings together pop culture, love, chaos theory and a study of human behaviour. Dr. Sandra Foster studies fads and their meanings for the HiTek corporation, a company keen to find a means of predicting how fads happen so they might create one themselves and profit from it. Also working for HiTek, Dr. Bennet O’Reilly is studying monkey group behaviour and chaos theory. When a misdelivered package brings the two together, coupled with a series of unfortunate events, they engage upon a joint project involving a flock of sheep. Even so, more setbacks, disappointments and surprises are likely to arise before the answers to their questions are found…

Thursday October 16th

19:00: Alfred Hitchcock’s Tales of Terror

With Shandon Loring.

21:00 Seanchai Late Night

With Finn Zeddmore.

Saturday October 18: Spooky Saturdays at Seanchai Kitely

09:00: Seanchai Kitely – Nocturnes

NocturesNocturnes marks Irish author John Connolly’s first anthology of short stories involving lost lovers and missing children, predatory demons, and vengeful ghosts, a latter-day grim reaper and vampiric wives – and much more besides.

Echoing genre masters such as M R James, Edgar Allen Poe, H.P. Lovecraft and Stephen King, Connolly delves into our darkest fears through a series of tales including The Underbury Witches, in which two detectives are faced with the ultimate in female evil and The Ritual of the Bones, where a boy at a boarding school who comes to face the dark side of the British class system. There are even two novella’s included in the volume, The Reflecting Eye, which sees the return of Connolly’s private detective hero, Charlie Parker, and the initial story within the book, The Cancer Cowboy, charting the progress of a modern-day grim reaper, a complex individual attempting to understand exactly who or what he is, and why he must be so.

Join Shandon Loring as he once more dips into Connelly’s tales to bring you another helping spooky stories.

10:00: The Graveyard Book

Join Caledonia Skytower as she continues Neil Gaiman’s 2009 Newbery Medal winning children’s fantasy novel, simultaneously published in Britain and America during 2008, which also collected the annual Hugo Award for Best Novel from the World Science Fiction Convention and the Locus Award for Best Young Adult Book selected by Locus magazine subscribers.

Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn’t live in a sprawling graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor of the dead. There are dangers and adventures in the graveyard for a boy. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, then he will come under attack from the man Jack—who has already killed Bod’s family . . .

Again, please note both of these sessions are at Seanchai’s Kitely homeworld, as indicated in the title link, above.

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Please check with the Seanchai Library SL’s blog for updates and for additions or changes to the week’s schedule. The featured charity for September-October is Reading is Fundamental: seeking motivate young children to read by working with them, their parents, and community members to make reading a fun and beneficial part of everyday life.

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SL tax information processing: Lab comments on recent delays

Since November 2013, the Lab has been attempting to operate in compliance with US Internal Revenue Service requirements by ensuring those Second Life users meeting “certain transaction thresholds” have filed required IRS documentation with the Lab (whether or not they are US residents).

News of this move first broke via an SL Universe forum thread, and was subsequently followed-up by bloggers such as Ciaran Laval and myself, and by the Lab also blogging on the matter.

As the tax and documentation requirements continued to cause some confusion, clarification was sought from the Lab, and additional documentation was published in February 2014 to further help people understand the requirements and how to comply with them. However, as the year has progressed, there have continued to be occasional issues with people actually getting the required paperwork processed by the Lab, affecting their ability to withdraw funds.

As reported by Ciaran Laval at the start of October, some people have once again recently  encountered delays in seeing their submitted documentation processed by the Lab. His post prompted a reply from Pete Linden, providing some insight into why delays are occurring:

Due to a significant volume of payout request in recent weeks, payout requests may take longer to process than expected. We apologize for the delay, and we are working hard on clearing the backlog and process requests as quickly as possible. In the meantime, we advise residents to please address any specific questions through their Support cases. We appreciate the cooperation and patience from all residents, and hope to have payout request processing times back to normal soon.

As Ciaran notes in following-up on Pete’s comment, it’s not clear why there has been a significant volume of payouts recently, although he suggests that it could be tied to the recent changes to the Lab’s Skill Gaming policy, which may have caused an increase in the number of people filing payment information with the Lab in order to engage with skill gaming regions.

Whatever, the reason, the Lab is aware of the situation, and hopefully taking the necessary steps to ensure delays are minimised and, as Ciaran states, “everything will be back on track in the near future and normal.”

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