Tansy Rayner Roberts

Musketeer Space Part 44: The Boys From Auster

March 25th, 2015

hatIt’s Musketeer Day again! This is an exciting week for me because I was finally able to announce officially that I have signed with a US agent: Fleetwood Robbins of Waxman Leavell. Looking forward to our collaboration this year, and hoping madly for some book sales. (not to mention working madly to finish the books he is hoping to sell for me)

I’m back teaching as well this year – some of you know that I spent many years teaching writer’s workshops for Adult Education, as well as occasionally for the TWC. I’m back this year, taking part in the A Novel Journey series, where people can sign up for a nine month stint of monthly technique-specific workshops while they write their novel, or single sessions. I’m doing the July session on Setting/Place, and the August session on Style/Rhythm/Pace, and the other Hobart workshops include several other genre-friendly authors like Lian Tanner and David Owen.

Now, I hope you’re all wearing your hats and swords, because this week’s chapter is a little light on Musketeers, but reintroduces us to some old friends.

All for one and one for all!

Start reading Musketeer Space from Part 1
Missed the last installment? Track back to Part 43
Read a festive Musketeer Space prequel,
“Seven Days of Joyeux.”
Main Page & Table of Contents

PREVIOUSLY IN MUSKETEER SPACE: Conrad Su has been kidnapped several times because of palace politics, and his employer Prince Alek’s complicated love life. Despite all the drama of the past, their mutual friend Chevreuse is certain that the Duchess of Buckingham’s private estate on Valour is the safest place to hide Conrad until all the fuss dies down. What they don’t know is that Buck has been thoroughly compromised by the same spy who kidnapped Conrad in the first place: Milord De Winter.



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Galactic Suburbia 116 Show Notes

March 24th, 2015

Our special 2014 Galactic Suburbia Award episode! Listen to find out our winner and shortlist for our award to honour activism and/or communication that advances the feminist conversation in the field of speculative fiction.

Get the new episode HERE.


Alisa: Haven S5, Tempest’s Reading Challenge

Alex: Tehanu, Tales of Earthsea, and The Other Wind, Ursula le Guin; Jupiter Ascending; Waistcoats and Weaponry, Gail Carriger.

Tansy: D’Artanyan i tri Mushketyora (1979); New Avengers: Breakout prose novel by Alisa Kwitney; New Avengers: Breakout, by Brian Michael Bendis; Curb Stomp #1 – Ryan Ferrier (writer), Devaki Neogi (artist); Princess Leia #1 – Mark Waid (writer) Terry & Rachel Dodson (artists).

NEXT TIME: tune in for our Ursula Le Guin essay spoilerific. We will be covering: “The Space Crone” & “Is Gender Necessary? (Redux)” (both in Dancing at the Edge of the World: Thoughts on Words, Women, and Places) and “Science Fiction and Mrs Brown”(in The Language of the Night: Essays on Fantasy and Science Fiction).

Please send feedback to us at galacticsuburbia@gmail.com, follow us on Twitter at @galacticsuburbs, check out Galactic Suburbia Podcast on Facebook, support us at Patreon and don’t forget to leave a review on iTunes if you love us!

ROBOTECH REWATCH 42: The Great Hospital Caper

March 21st, 2015

Hold your position, Robotech transmissions will now resume.

EPS_60_4_9336Episode 47 – Outsiders

Turns out Dana can play piano too! Who knew?

While her boys all sleep soundly, she is up in the middle of the night pining over her strange visions of the purple haired pilot in the Red Bioroid. The narrator suggests that Dana’s human half and her Zentraedi half are at war with each other.

Meanwhile, Global Military Police Lieutenant Nova Satori is on a standard rubble patrol when she finds a surprisingly pretty purple-haired pilot sprawled out on the rocks, waiting for her to take him prisoner.

Apparently the first thing she does is remove his shirt, because he’s not wearing one later when the scientists examine him. Go, Nova!

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Issue #1 – Curb Stomp (2015)

March 19th, 2015

curb stompTitle: Curb Stomp #1

Writer: Ryan Ferrier

Artist: Devaki Neogi

The Buzz: Ferrier describes it as a timeless street gang story – not quite now, not quite 1980′s, but definitely punk rock. The book was launched by Boom! Studios as part of their general strategy to put more books out there for female audiences – along with Lumberjanes, Bee and Puppycat, and Butterfly.

All You Need To Know: Punk rock girl gangs, diverse cast of characters, brutal suburban violence, and a roller-derby style community of women protecting their own turf.

Story: Machete Betty leads The Fever, an all-female gang (her fellow warriors are called Derby Girl, Bloody Mary, Daisy Chain & Violet Volt) who protect Old Beach, a down and out borough near a wealthy city – when they’re not drinking shots, caring for their families and singing in a rock band. Betty kills a rival gang member in self defence, and the Wrath come demanding a Fever life in return.

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Musketeer Space Part 43: Fleet United

March 18th, 2015

rustyHappy Musketeer Day!

I spent the weekend immersed in the musical hijinks of Russian Musketeers Own my Soul (1979) and any future Musketeer adaptation I watch which does not have musical numbers (or Rochefort wearing purple satin) is going to be a grave disappointment to me. I am ruined for all Musketeers, forever.

Truly, Musketeer Media Monday can be a cruel mistress.

Start reading Musketeer Space from Part 1
Missed the last installment? Track back to Part 42
Read a festive Musketeer Space prequel, “Seven Days of Joyeux.”
Main Page & Table of Contents

PREVIOUSLY ON MUSKETEER SPACE: Dana D’Artagnan is almost a Musketeer now, or at least is piloting a supplies and support transport as they all head off to war. She received a transmission that proved Conrad Su, the guy she sort of has a thing with, is still alive after being kidnapped by Dana’s greatest enemy: Milord De Winter. But there’s no time for romance and side trips with an interstellar war about to kick off… right?



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Russian Musketeers Own my Soul (1979)

March 16th, 2015

kinopoisk.ruSo we remember the crushing disappointment that I felt when the Gene Kelly version of The Three Musketeers turned out to not be a musical?


Enter D’Artanyan i tri Mushketyora (1979), a glorious three part mini-series, featuring all the satin shirts, lace collars and Musketeer shenanigans you could desire, along with an adorably cheesy musical score. THEY SING THEY DANCE.

I had so much fun watching this, I can’t even tell you. Musketeers singing their feelings out is now my favourite everything.


D’Artanyan (Mikhail Boyarskiy) has no sooner arrived in Meung than he is treated to a song about how the Cardinal sees and spies on everything – when the Red Guard chases off the unpatriotic singers, D’Artanyan ends up fighting them.

Rochefort (Boris Klyuev), sadly sans the eyepatch though he does have a bright violet suit and a scar, insults D’Artanyan’s yellow horse, which leads to a splendid scuffle in a street full of sheep. Mikhail Boyarskiy reminds me very strongly of Gene Kelly’s take on the character, and the tone of the movie is very similar to that 1948 version.

As D’Artanyan lies bleeding in a haystack, we meet a sinister, Dolly Partonesque Milady (Margarita Terekhova) – seriously, she’s all blonde curls and black cowboy hat, if she doesn’t sing country-style I will be very disappointed.

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ROBOTECH REWATCH 41: Spies Make Terrible Boyfriends

March 14th, 2015

George is underdressed for his first date with Dana.

George is underdressed for his first date with Dana.

At ease, troopers, Robotech is back.

Episode 46 – Stardust

The Robotech Masters and their amazing clone friends start their scientific experiments on the human hostages, including examination of their memories. They are particularly interested in social habits and the whole weird mating ritual thing that makes it clear humans are very different to Zentraedi.

The Robotech Masters are surprised to discover how little humans actually know about Protoculture, though this will help them with their task – if the humans don’t know much about the protoculture matrix, they can’t stop the Masters taking it back from the ruins of the space fortress.

(Ha, like humans need to know anything about anything in order to ruin your plans)

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Musketeer Space Part 42: Communications in Outer Space

March 11th, 2015

headphonesIt’s Musketeer Day!

I’m at home with two sick, cranky children, but there’s always Musketeers to keep me company.

I had a jetsetting weekend, flying into Canberra for a fantastic launch of new book Cranky Ladies of History, the first book I have edited (co-edited) in twelve years, now available from Fablecroft.

Thank you so much to the extraordinary Karen Middleton for joining us to launch this wonderful book that I regularly hug to my chest. You can check out the amazing array of Cat Sparks photos from the event here on Flickr. So proud of this book, and I was so glad to hang out with so many of my East Coast friends on Sunday.

Start reading Musketeer Space from Part 1
Missed the last installment? Track back to Part 41
Read a festive Musketeer Space prequel, “Seven Days of Joyeux.”
Main Page & Table of Contents

PREVIOUSLY ON MUSKETEER SPACE: The Sun-kissed besieged the planet of Truth some time ago, and now Dana and her Three Musketeer best friends have shipped out to war as reinforcements for the Royal Fleet. Also, remember when Conrad Su got himself kidnapped for messing with palace politics? Fun times.


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ROBOTECH REWATCH 40: Who are the Invid?

March 7th, 2015

metal fireHold your position, Robotech transmissions will now resume.

Episode 45 – Metal Fire

Dana blows up at Angelo for his casual anti-alien racism. He obviously hasn’t got the memo about her being the famous first child born to a human-Zentraedi relationship.

Bowie, meanwhile, is moping about the pretty girl he saw on the flagship – and the narrator conveniently provides us with a short bio about her, so we learn before Bowie that she is Musica, sister to Allegra and Octavia, clones created by the Robotech Masters.

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Friday Links is a Secret Princess Story

March 6th, 2015

mockingbirdI haven’t watched Jupiter Ascending, but I have been fascinated by the meta commentary around about whether it’s a bad film or not, and whether it’s an anti-feminist film or not, and so on.

The Fangirl Happy Hour reviewed it very positively and got into some fantastic meta about what the film does well, while still (and this is crucial) not necessarily being a good film. Renay’s rant on agency and how a perceived lack of it is used too often to dismiss female-centred stories is a masterwork of criticism that she’s obviously been building up to for some time and everyone should listen to it.

I’d like to add this Tumblr post which explains how Jupiter Ascending is being criticised for failing to meet the requirements for a Chosen Hero narrative, when in fact it is a Secret Princess story, and that has different narrative beats.

Then we have Kate Elliott at Tor.com, being brilliant about Writing Female Characters as Human Beings – with an articulate, point by point exploration of how writers can do better at this particular skill, should they aspire to do so. She also talks about agency, and how there are different kinds of agency in real life as in stories. The article is full of practical advice and while some of the comments are frustrating, many of them add thoughtful layers to the conversation as a whole.

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