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Monday, January 17, 2011

"Casefile: Neutral Grounds" and my tiny, paper soapbox

So much going on!
 I did some character portraits for the Dresden Files RPG put out by Evil Hat Productions, and it's available now. I mightily enjoyed working on them, and I hope I get to do more with the lovely and talented Fred Hicks and his team of madpeople.
The character portraits laid into the notebook feel of the PDF well, I think. See? Coffee rings ADD to the beauty of something! (mumble, mumble, defending myself for spilling coffee on stuff)

Anyway, the PDF is FREE from DriveThruRPG.com, and it's a great one-shot introduction into the Dresden Files universe and RPG system.  Check it out here.

I know I'm the last person on earth to start reading the Dresden Files books (written by Jim Butcher), but I do like his flavour of modern-magic-noir. There are two genres (sub-genres?) I can't get enough of in fiction lately: modern magic, and turn-of-the-century crime.

I do like noir fiction. When it comes to noir, however, there's a tricky topic I find myself fixating on. In Dresden Files, Jim Butcher manages to make women attractive without patronizing or diminishing them, or making them less intelligent, capable or, in some cases, deadly. That's refreshing, since so many newer noir classics like "Altered Carbon" (nuthin' but love, peeps) can't shake the slightly icky aftertaste of sexism, no matter how great a read, or how intense a world they've constructed. I don't consider myself a feminist, and I don't like soapboxes as a general rule; I do climb up a step sometimes when it comes to the conundrum of talking about women in noir fiction.

Anyway, they Dresden Files books, for that reason and others, are good reads. I'm on Book 2: Fool Moon. It's no secret I like werewolves ("there wolf, there castle"), so I'm latching on to this one. If he writes one about Cthulhu, I'm in love.

Next week I think I'm gonna look into those newfangled "Walkman" devices everyone's all a-tizzy about. Betchyer buttons.

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