Category Archives: Events

Artefacts, adventures, archives and ransoms

It’s time to kick-off another week of storytelling in Voice by the staff and volunteers at the Seanchai Library. As always, all times SLT, and events are held at the Library’s Second Life home at Bradley University, unless otherwise indicated.

Monday, May 1st 19:00: Architects of Hyperspace

Humour, hard science and speculative science fiction all combine in this novel by Thomas R. McDonough, who has worked with both the SETI Institute and The Planetary society.

A trio driven by personal ambitions comes together after a dying man’s last words send them in search of the secrets of a lost alien civilisation.

A wonderful tongue in cheek story backed by great speculative science. The combination of the sometimes screwball comedy with the specifics of how hyperspace could work and the details of the time lags of space communication, etc, made for a believable and well-formed diegesis. There were times reading this book that I just had to stop to laugh. The book reminds me a great deal of Red Dwarf. 

Join Gyro Muggins as he reads this unusual story.

Tuesday, May 2nd 19:00: Wild at Heart

Aoife Lorenfield continues Clare Alexander’s 2017 novel.

At 26 and unmarried, Nora Nicholson believes she has little choice but to follow her brother Edward away from England to West Africa. So it was that, having never set foot outside of the village where she had been born, she found herself boarding a Royal Navy frigate about to set sail for those exotic, distant lands.

Little did she know that she would find work illustrating birds for the naturalist and ship’s surgeon, John Sharples, or form the unlikeliest of friendships with Senhora Morena – or that she would meet Hugh Beaumont, naturalist and explorer, late of the 95th Rifles.

Once he led men in war, many of whom died in the field of battle. Now he desires to explore the rivers and forest of West Africa. But for Hugh Beaumont, leaving duty behind does not come easy. So it is he finds himself bringing criminals to justice and protecting Miss Nicholson, who is sorely in need of help. Then love enters the picture.

Wednesday, May 3rd 19:00 The Atrocity Archives Part 2

atrocity-archivesBob Howard is a low-level techie working for The Laundry, a super-secret government agency. While his colleagues are out saving the world, Bob’s under a desk restoring lost data. None of them receive any thanks for the jobs they do, but at least a techie doesn’t risk getting shot or eaten in the line of duty. Bob’s world is dull but safe, and that’s the way it should have stayed; but then he went and got Noticed.

Now, Bob Howard is up to his neck in spycraft, alternative universes, dimension-hopping Nazis, Middle Eastern terrorists, damsels in distress, ancient Lovecraftian horror and the end of the world.

Only one thing is certain: it will take more than control-alt-delete to sort this mess out…

Join Corwyn Allen as he resumes relating stories involving Charles Stross’ unlikely hero, Bob Howard.

Thursday, May 4th 19:00, Night of the Wolf

Robert E. Howard is perhaps best known as the creator of Conan the Barbarian and Solomon Kane. However, he also wrote a plethora of short stories involving a range of characters and settings. This story involves Cormac Mac Art, an outlawed Gael, a pirate and a Reiver.

Set on the island of Golara, North of the Scottish mainland, near the Shetlands. Here is a mix of native Picts, ostensibly under the “protection” of a Norse raiding group who are using the island as their base of operations – and their bitter enemies, the Danes, are using as a target.

Into this wades Irish legend Cormac Mac Art (and opponent of Danes and Norsemen), trying to operate in disguise to win the freedom of someone captured by the Norse raiding party who is not all he appears to be. Problem is, the leader of the Norse is not for a moment fooled by Cormac’s disguise…

Read by Shandon Loring and also presented in Kitely grid.kitely.com:8002:EXPLORESeanchai).


Please check with the Seanchai Library’s blog for updates and for additions or changes to the week’s schedule.

The featured charity for March April is Project Children, building peace in Ireland one child at a time.

Advertisements

BURN2: Burnal Equinox 2017

BURN2 Burnal Equinox – poster via BURN2

Friday, April 28th marked the opening of the 2017 BURN2 Burnal Exquinox event, which will run through until Sunday, April 30th.

The theme for this year’s event is Scared and Profane, with the press release for the event reading in part:

What does this mean? The sacred–profane dichotomy is an idea posited by French sociologist Émile Durkheim, who considered it to be the central characteristic of religion, “Religion is a unified system of beliefs and practices relative to sacred things, that is to say, things set apart and forbidden.”

In Durkheim’s theory, the sacred represented the interests of the group, especially unity, which were embodied in sacred group symbols, or totems. The profane, on the other hand, involved mundane individual concerns. Durkheim explicitly stated that the sacred/profane dichotomy was not equivalent to good/evil. The sacred could be good or evil, and the profane could be either as well.

Throughout the playa, is a series of builds offering various takes on the theme. As one might expect, religious symbolism is heavy throughout, together with the more “traditional” images of BURN2. Plenty of humour is also on offer – such as the Lanterns That Must Not Be Touched (but which rain carrots if they are…).

A full weekend of entertainment and festivities will be taking place through the three days of the event, which kicked-off at 10:00 SLT on Friday, April 28th with a Lamp Lighter procession. You can find full details of activities in the BURN 2 calendar, some of the highlights of which include (all times SLT):

  • Saturday, April 29th:
    • 19:00 – 19:30: BURN2 Acrobat Fire Dancers
    • 19:30 – 20:00: Royal Lepus Fashion Show
  • Sunday April 30th:
    • 10:00 – 11:00: Lamp Lighters and Fire Dancers
    • 11:00 – 12:00 noon: first Burn of the equinox
    • 12:00 noon – 13:00: Chang High Sisters
    • 15:00 – 16:00: DRUM
    • 17:00 – 18:00: Lamp Lighters and Fire Dancers
    • 18:00 – 19:00: second Burn of the equinox

About BURN2

BURN2 is an extension of the Burning Man festival and community into the world of Second Life. It is an officially sanctioned Burning Man regional event, and the only virtual world event out of more than 100 real world Regional groups and the only regional event allowed to burn the man.

The BURN2 Team operates events year around, culminating in an annual major festival of community, art and fire in the fall – a virtual echo of Burning Man itself.

Related Links

The song of the Spirit Pool in Second Life

The Spirit Pool by Kayle Matzerath, Fantasy Faire 2017

Since the dawn of the First Age, when the peoples of the world started counting the passage of Time, we have been here. Keepers of the waters; guardians of Life’s Way; shepherds to those seeking rest as their Path leads to the gates of Beyond.

Carved from the living rock above the waters and below the outspread arms of the Goddess, our halls are open to all, from above or below the waves. Like time itself, our waters flow outwards from their beginning in the hills, passing through tunnel and channel as they seeking the Spirit Pool, while the ebb and flow of landfolk and seafolk mark the beat of the citadel’s heart.

The Spirit Pool by Kayle Matzerath, Fantasy Faire 2017

To some we are a place of commerce, folded between land and sea. To those seeking Answers or uncertain of their way as their years wane, we are a place of Sanctuary and peace. The waters of the Spirit Pool offer rest and clarity of vision and thought to those who seek either. 

As the world turns, so we have seen the rise and fall of many; but while the years fall like leaves from a bough and the ages unfold as the petals of the flower, we remain. These walls, ancient before the world grew old, tire not. Though countless thousands of feet have walked our piers and halls, the stone beneath them does not fade nor wear. Our banners do not fade.

The Spirit Pool by Kayle Matzerath, Fantasy Faire 2017

“Timeless” some might call it; but that would infer we have escaped time. But how do you escape something to which you’ve never been held in thrall? We simply Are; and that is why the weary, the lost, the lingering souls caught between one realm and the next, find their way to us.

Beneath the Goddess’ outstretched arms, within the shade of covered terraces and walks, guided by the lanterns held aloft by the Handmaidens of the Pool or within the waters of the Pool itself, all who are uncertain, all who seek reset before passing beyond the realm of the physical, are welcome here.

The Spirit Pool by Kayle Matzerath, Fantasy Faire 2017

As a trader or traveller coming to this citadel for commerce, you may not see them moving among the people here, but we do. Our promises is to care for them, provide the peace they need so that they may hear their own calling. We do not offer direction; we do not encourage passage one way or the other. Each of those bound by time must make their own choice as to which path they will take. 

That is how it always has been, here in the midst of the Spirit Pool, and it is how it always will be. We greet you now as friend and traveller, and offer our halls as a place of trading and meetings. And we will welcome you again, one day, when your spirit is in need of rest and your thoughts in need of focus, when the Spirit Pool calls to you once more. 

The Spirit Pool by Kayle Matzerath, Fantasy Faire 2017

SLurl Details

The art at Fantasy Faire in Second Life

Fantasy Faire: Art Gallery 1

As anyone who visits the Fantasy Faire Flickr pool will know that among its many achievements, each year’s Faire bring forth an outpouring of creativity through people’s photographs of the Fairelands regions. It’s also not unreasonable to say that fantasy art as a whole is one of the staples of Second Life photography as a whole, such is the popularity of fantasy realms in-world.

It’s therefore fitting that Fantasy Faire embraces this wellspring of individual creativity each year by offering Second Life photographers and artists the opportunity to display their work. In fact, this year fantasy art is doubly celebrated, with not one but two galleries of art to be appreciated.

Fantasy Faire: Art Gallery 2

Both can be found within Opal Flight, the Arts and Entertainment region of the Faire, which sees Haveit Neox and Lilia Artis bring forth a magnificently unique region which is itself a work of art, extending as much below the waves as it does above. The galleries play host to the work of 40 artists, including the likes of noted Fantasy Faire photographers Alisaundra Andel and Caitlin Tobias, as well as a host of names familiar and perhaps new to those who follow Second Life art. You can find the full list of artists, with links to their Flickr streams on the Fantasy Faire website, so I won’t repeat them here.

The first of the galleries is presented above the surface of the water on the west side of the region, beautifully hung from the stems and leaves of great white gallery plants. A path of floating leaves offers the way to them, but such is the scale of the gallery space – and if you have the luxury – I would suggest flycamming to view the art more completely. Follow the path around to the end of the art display, and it will lead you onwards and beneath the waves to the underwater part of the region.

Fantasy Faire: Art Gallery 1

The second of the galleries can be found underwater within a coral rotunda at the centre of the region, which if teleported to directly can also act as a gateway to the undersea environment Haveit and Lila have created; an environment I thoroughly recommend visiting.

The art displayed within the galleries offers a broad mix of style, narrative – something regular readers of my blog will know attracts me – emotion, power and sense of fun. The names of the artists are not directly displayed, but  provided you are within whisper – I think – range of an image, touching it will cause the title and artist’s name to be displayed in local chat. I have no idea of the criteria used to select the images, but the number of images displayed by any artist seems to vary between one and two pieces.

Fantasy Faire: Art Gallery 2

On a personal note, and through both of my visits to the galleries, I did find myself feeling that the this exhibition is a little one-sided, with the onus very much on avatar studies. But over the years, Fantasy Faire has produced some fabulous realms over the years, many of which have been the subject of photographs and art. So having a few of these recalled among the preponderance of avatar sets would not have been amiss, and might have further broadened the depth (and possibly the appeal) of the exhibition.

Nevertheless, given how easily an art exhibition can be overlooked with so much else occurring at Fantasy Faire, I do very much recommend that anyone who enjoys Second Life art and photography stop by Opal Flight and visit the galleries. And as noted, while doing so, they take the time to explore the region as a whole. It truly is a delight.

SLurl Details