I figure I’ll leave the question post open until I answer the last one. (At present, I probably have this post and one more to make.)
Also, you don’t need an LJ account to post a comment — I’ve resisted locking that down, despite the spam.
bookblather asked, How do you feel about Mary Queen of Scots?
My feelings there are . . . complicated.
I basically have two perspectives on her: the one acquired through reading Dunnett’s Lymond Chronicles, and the one acquired through writing Midnight Never Come. The latter is decidedly skewed toward Elizabeth’s side of the tale, while the former is more partisan to the Scottish side (though I wouldn’t say it’s strongly so). Sometimes these two conflict, and which one wins out depends on my mood and what I had for breakfast.
In general, I think her life was a deranged soap opera. All the parental drama and marriages and murders and imprisonment — it’s just crazy. I can’t really imagine what it was like to live through that. One of these days I should really read a good biography of her life.
(Also, even when I’m feeling less than entirely sympathetic to her, I still think her execution was awful. Nobody should have to go through that.)
logovore asked, What fictional settings would you most like to (temporarily and safely) visit?
I appreciate the qualifiers, which change my answer rather substantially. 🙂
The Chrestomanci ‘verse from Diana Wynne Jones’ books would be a great one; I’d love spirit-traveling around to the different worlds. Pern, because flying and going between sounds awesome. Pamela Dean’s Secret Country, even though I don’t know enough literary references to truly enjoy myself there. The Commonwealth of Letters from Silverlock, even though ditto. 🙂 Florin, from The Princess Bride, just to say I’d been there. The World of Two Moons, from Elfquest.
The funny thing about trying to answer this question is, I have a hard time separating the setting from the roles within it. I can’t think of Pern without also thinking of having my own telepathically bonded dragon. I can’t think of Chrestomanci without imagining myself as an enchantress within it. Do I get to be special in these worlds? Or am I just me, with no skills or benefits I don’t already have? That affects my opinion quite a lot.
Any way you slice it, though, almost all of my answers are places I’ve had in my head since childhood. It seems the settings I’ve read about more recently don’t flip that “I wish I could go there” switch in my brain.
wshaffer asked, If you were a rock star*, what instrument would you play, and what would your band be called?
I’d be the keyboardist, probably. (My two instruments are piano and French horn, and while I could name some random instrument I don’t actually play, the truth is there’s no instrument I love enough on concept alone to overcome my love for the ones I know in reality.)
As for a name, that’s harder. What kind of band is this? (I take “rock star” in a broad sense; it isn’t necessarily a rock band in genre terms.) Let’s say we do sort of world-folk fusion, with maybe some electronic and percussive elements on particular songs. I’m sort of tempted to call it “Cabinet of Curiosities” or “Kunstkammer” or something of that sort, but that makes us sound steampunky, which isn’t necessarily what I’m after. I dunno. It’s cheating on the principle of these posts, maybe, but I’ll hand this one back to the commentariat: what do you think such a band should be called?