Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Leaving It Out

Oh, yeah. Here comes summer in Tucson! This was taken at lunchtime today.

Gene Sheldon as Bernardo in Zorro

I've finally managed to cut back my obsessive watching of a certain episode of a certain tv show long enough to do a few other things tonight. All right, so some of it was Wikipedia, but I still feel I've accomplished something. Basically I worked on two things there tonight, both of which involve pictures. You see, Wikimedia Foundation is concerned that all the images on Wikipedia qualify as fair use. To this end, they've decided that selecting an appropriate licensing description, such as this:

This image is a screenshot of a copyrighted television program or station ID. As such, the copyright for it is most likely owned by the company or corporation that produced it. It is believed that the use of a limited number of web-resolution screenshots

qualifies as fair use under United States copyright law.

...isn't good enough. One has to also provide a "fair use rationale" for each use of the image. So now a 'bot is going around Wikipedia, targeting thousands of images for deletion unless someone adds something that says, in effect, "This is a screen capture of George M. George, the long-dead star of Georgie Time. It is used to illustrate the articles about George M. George and Georgie Time. It is a low-resolution image, and no free image is possible."

A cropped version of the Many Waters cover

Over the last few days, a bunch of warnings have turned up on articles I care about, so I've added these fair use rationale thingies to a bunch of stuff I didn't upload. I apparently missed one, and the main illustration of the Tenth Doctor article has been completely deleted now. But I'm making an effort to preserve what I can. I even took someone's image of the wraparound cover of Many Waters by Madeleine L'Engle and turned it into two smaller images to upload, one for the novel's article, one for the article about the lead characters.

The other little project was one I've been meaning to do for almost a year. Henry Calvin (who played Sergeant Garcia on Zorro) and Gene Sheldon (who played Bernardo) didn't have articles until today. Someone started a stub for Sheldon, so I added a picture, an infobox, his date of birth and info on Toby Tyler, a film he was in with Henry Calvin and Kevin "Moochie" Corcoran. I worked on doing the same for a new article on Henry Calvin, only to discover when I went to save that someone had started a stub for him while I was working on mine. Mine was much more detailed, so I saved mine anyway. The only part the other person had that I left out was the word "rotund."

But for all that, I did get something done tonight on the novels, specifically An Adept in Mâvarin, the first volume of Mages of Mâvarin. I confess that I skipped over that Darsuma scene for now, although I have written about a page and a half of it. This is because I'm not yet sure I'm using the scene. There's a similar one in Chapter Nine, and I don't want to cover the same ground twice, unless there's a point to it. If the two scenes show a major deterioration of Darsuma's mental state, and each scene has revelations germane to the chapter it's in, then it may be justifiable keeping both scenes. Otherwise, not so much.

Other unwritten scenes are getting even less of the benefit of the doubt.

Darsuma sneaks around the Palace again. Carli sees her. <--write?

Um, no. Probably not. I deleted the note. In fact, I think I deleted two bits like that. I also killed one with Fabi encountering invisible tengremen or something. Reading through the chapters, I saw that it came shortly after a major sequence in which he "remembers" dying in a fire, which is a key moment in the Fabi storyline. It's too soon to veer off into some other largely irrelevant example of the dirty tricks mages are playing on people in Mâvarin. I've decided to make sure there are sufficient mentions of such troubles to place the spirit attack sequences in perspective, but I won't have scenes in which they actually happen. For one thing, it's not especially credible that Fabi runs into several different troublemakers from Mâton over the course of his month-long journey, and the other major characters don't travel enough in that version of Mâvarin to see that sort of thing at all. For another, it makes sense to focus on the one particular troublemaker Fabi will eventually confront, and save the other "dirty tricks" for The Mâvarin Revolutions, in which characters will be actively looking for trouble in order to stop it.

I just hope that as I cut all these scenes I didn't write in the first place, I won't leave readers of this seriously long story feeling that key bits have been left out!


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