felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
It's been a quiet few days. I've been holding off printing my novel before I can actually get a copy to one of my three editors -- that way I won't be able to snatch it back in a panic state, deciding it's terrible. I've been making minor adjustments to things I wasn't quite happy with.

I've spent much of the last week doing research for my website. Spent the day at the Archives trying to dig up information on Canada's first victim (in 1891) of the "gross indecency" laws, a man with the astonishing name of Napoléon Lamoureux.

Records from that era, though, are spotty and hard to sort through. I couldn't find any minutes of trials for that time and place, nor subpoenas, and the handwritten notes judges take during the trials didn't include his or any of the other men arrested for the same crime that year.

I only know these men were convicted, because they show up at the St. Vincent de Paul Penitentiary and are recorded as having been convicted in Montreal.

In brighter news, one of Canada's best-known gay activists, Brent Hawkes, was awarded the Order of Canada last week. The Order of Canada is the country's highest civilian honour, something like a knighthood in Britain. Hawkes -- an openly-gay Protestant minister -- performed the same-sex wedding that triggered the court case that finally got us same-sex marriage. But he has a gay-activist résumé going back more than thirty years.

I'm really proud to be in a country that gives gay activists honours like that, even if that kind of recognition was a long time coming.
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
One of the great things about Wordpress -- the people who host my GLBT history website and provide the software -- is that they tell you exactly what people are plugging into search engines to find it. That's how I know what people are looking for when they arrive.

Today, the list of queries included, "What did medieval nuns eat?"

Since my post only dealt with lesbianism among medieval nuns, I'm guessing that person got their answer.
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)

I have updated by historical website, although it's just a summary of the section. Really, it's the Cole's-Notes version of half a year of research.

I have to say that researching homosexuality between the fall of New France and Confederation was agonizing -- it's the least-studied period of Canadian history, generally, and I uncovered a lot of info that no one studying this area has looked at.

Social Life

It was a great New Year's -- spent it with [livejournal.com profile] montrealais and his boyf at the drag show at Club Mado. New Year's is really the only time of the year I go out clubbing, so I really enjoyed it.


My New Year's resolution is about time management. As I'm only working 20 hours a week, there's a lot more time to write than I've been using, and I think that if I treat my writing as a second job -- with times and schedules rather than just a minimum amount each day -- I'll be better able to use my free time.

Currently, the border between writing-time and play-time is so fuzzy that I feel guilty for relaxing or hanging out with friends or doing other things. If I'm more disciplined with my writing during the day -- treating it like any other job -- I'll be more able to do things like hanging out with friends and going out to clubs, etc.
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
So yeah -- last night we had a marvellous rit for Yule -- my first true Yule ritual in far too long. [livejournal.com profile] montrealais whipped up a feast, and we exchanged gifts. I'm in BC usually for the actual Solstice, so I tend to miss it every year.

I'm a little dead right now. I'm on lunch on my eighth consecutive work day -- I did a six-day week at my usual language school, a day of work at my twice-a-year moonlighting job, and now I'm back to my regular one. Actually, I can barely see the screen.

Oh, and here's a profile of the Tomb of the Hairdressers, which I found in a metaquotes thread. It's an ancient Egyptian tomb for two men (the Pharoah's head manicurists) who are frequently shown in intimate embraces.

So far, there is no word on the long-lost Tomb of the Broadway Dance Choreographer.
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
It's taken me two months, but I was finally able to get the information I needed to make the post on Dr. James Miranda Barry on my LGBT history site.

Not much else to report. I've just been working on a short story this week, and a couple of poems that didn't turn out so well (I'm trying to assemble six pages worth of flawless poetry to send out).

Most of what I've been reading lately related to Barry, though now I'm finally getting around to a book I got last Yule. It's the latest in that series of books -- The Children of Hurin -- that Christopher Tolkien has been pumping out of his father's corpse. I honestly wonder if Christopher is just writing the damn things himself now.
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
Yeah -- I've been reading this marvellous biography, and I usually hate biography, but this one's been a pleasure. It's called Scanty Particulars by Rachel Holmes, and it's the story of the British doctor James Miranda Barry.

Barry has several biographies, but none is so well-researched or presented. Holmes was kind of annoyed that Barry's secret -- revealed at the end of his life -- eclipsed all the other astonishing things he managed to do. He was pretty adventurous.

In other news, [livejournal.com profile] maidenofirisa, I thought Phoenix Wright was a bizarre, Bizarro-world version of the legal system, like all those bad Hollywood dramas. Turns out that -- except for the time constraints and the cravats and evil spirits -- it's actually a fairly accurate depiction of the Japanese legal system, right down to the manufacturing of evidence and prosecutors running things. Remind me not to get arrested in Japan.

(As I've encountered Dahlia Hawthorne now, I'll also say that it gives a fairly accurate depiction of literature majors, too.)
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
I am doing better today, though I'm going to have to push back the update to my website until next week, because of illness and work and general stress. Plus I've had trouble researching, since all the good books on Dr. James Barry are in McGill's Osler library, and (unlike the Redpath and Maclennan libraries) I don't think non-McGill students have access to them.

Unfortunately, Concordia alumni can't get interlibrary loans.

I probably have enough basic material to work with, but I'd like something to flesh it out, and I'm already unsure of my sources.

Oh well. I think I'm going to stay in and edit today, and I'll figure out what to do with research afterwards.

Oh, and Happy Thanksgiving to those who celebrate it.
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
Happy Mabon to those who celebrate it ^_^

(I plan to spend it mostly relaxing and writing, though if anyone wants to get together, let me know.)

I posted to my historical blog, this time about Sappho in early Canada.

I must've learned a lot in high school about drawing out a little information a long way -- the gist of it is that early Canadians managed to be obsessed with Sappho while ignoring anything even vaguely queer in her poetry. Early feminism was mostly interested in her as a woman who could write brilliantly.
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)

I've posted another entry in my historical blog, this one about the end of the death penalty for homosexuality in Canada in 1869.

I sifted through a lot of 138-year-old political debates to find out how controversial that provision in the criminal-law reform bill of 1869 was. The short answer: it wasn't.

The politicians spent a lot more time arguing whether garotting should be punishable by whipping -- which sounds like a debate from "The Onion in History," or one recalled by Grandpa Simpson.


Harper prorogued Parliament, meaning he's shut it down for a month. This is the culmination of the tantrum-throwing in the committees, the blanket secrecy Harper demanded from the bureaucracy, the secret trade discussions, the illegal campaign financing, and the refusing the implement the Kyoto requirements voted on as law by parliament.

This means, in practical terms, that a lot of high-profile bills have died on the order paper before they became laws, including the highly flawed and unconstitutional "age of consent" bill.

It also means the Clean Air Act is dead, and hearings into the RCMP pension theft have stopped. Convenient, eh?
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
I posted another entry on my historical blog, this one about the five men being held at the Provincial Penitentiary at Kingston between 1841 and 1871.

I'm particularly proud of this section, because of all the research involved. I worry about the personal note tacked on at the end, and considered deleting it several times, but I felt it had to be there.

I'm going to Ottawa Pride today with the NDP, which should be fun ^_^
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
It's been awhile, but I now have a new post on my LGBT history site -- it's about the early sodomy trials, though it's mostly about how little we know about them. It'll get a bit more interesting when we hit the Kingston penetentiary next Sunday.

It's been a good week for writing. Either today or tomorrow, I'll be 90% of the way through my massive edit.

Once I hit that 90% mark, I'll be sending a chunk off to [livejournal.com profile] node357, because those passages deal with things we both experienced in Esquimalt, and I want his perspective on them. Then I'll rewrite a passage right near the end -- I want to have it re-written before I move to the editing stage.

After about two days of that, I'm looking at about a week or so of remaining edit, then printing, then showing it to others.
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
A miniature non-update on my blog, explaining the lack of updates. I've been goofing of all week, except for at work and on my novel.

As for my novel, the relaxation in other areas seems to have really helped in that one. I passed the 75% mark on my massive edit. If I can keep up my current rate, I'll be four-fifths finished in three days.

Other than that, it's just been Kingdom Hearts -- which is very fun, and the Disney elements (which still make me cringe) decrease as the game progresses. I'll post a review when I'm done.

Next week, I'm working extra hours, so there'll be little time for video games. I want to finish my novel this month, because my goal is to start sending it out by the end of October.

I also really have to get cracking on my research -- I didn't go into the archives this week, and still have a good 50 years of Montreal indictment records to go over.
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
I've posted George Herchmer Markland on my other site. Not as well-researched as Alexander Wood, but still an interesting story.

I'll finally be three-fifths through my massive edit today or tomorrow. And I may not have to give up my whole weekend after all, since I'm way ahead on the work I usually have to give up a weekend for.
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
Another post to my historical journal, this one about Alexander Wood.

This is my first time doing research on a figure who's already been extensively covered -- most of the others have been pretty obscure.

The pride parade was fantastic this year, even if it got started late. The new group that's taken over the events really knows what it's doing. After marching, we went up to the top floor of Drugstore (right below the open-air area, a cool, quiet little area no one in the overcrowded Village had discovered. It was nice ^_^
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
Another update on my queer history journal. I'm finally done with the context-stuff, and I can move on now to tackle the subject of homosexuality in early English Canada more directly.

The LGBT community day was marvellous. The people who took over after Divers/Cité copped out did it so much better than Divers/Cité that I hope they handle it every year. They're organizing the parade tomorrow, so it'll probably be better than previous years.

Not only was the community day fun, we had a marvellous rain storm in the middle of it. It was pelting. I went out in it. It didn't last long, but it broke the miserable heat of the last few days ^_^
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
Just a little post to say I'm not dead. I even updated my other journal -- more on sodomy laws, with a few legal bits and pieces that probably aren't worksafe, unless ancient gossip about "great ladies" and "baboons" is worksafe where you are.

With all the paranoid knee-jerk censorship online these days, I worry sometimes that the words I have to use to talk about queer history will get my site shut down by some tech who's more reaction than thought. I mean, you can't write about "sodomy laws" without the word "sodomy," especially not when the meaning of the word was in dispute.

It's been a shitty day at work -- I made a stupid and major mistake, so I can't even put it the blame on someone else. My only defence is that I'm doing the job of 2.5 people right now, and my attention is scattered. Problem is, it's got me so stressed that it's leading to a cascade of minor errors, and it's put me in a foul mood.

In better news, I finally finished Deathly Hallows, though a review will have to wait for another day. I just wanted to say it's the best in the series, which is good because so much could've gone wrong. Now that's over, I'll venture into cyberspace again, no longer afraid of having it spoiled.
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
Another update, this one about France's laws. A two-parter about laws.

After those, I'll get to the Loyalists, then finally to actually queer topics in Canada -- Alexander Wood, George Herchmer Markland, and some of the victims of the early laws.

Also, I'm nearly halfway through my massive edit -- I am still working on my novel in all this! I'm also at the end of my first week being pretty much the only person in my department (one on paternity leave, the other on vacation).

Mostly, though, my attention is occupied with the Pötterdamerung. I'm glad it's finally here. I pick up my novel at 9 am tomorrow. There have been so many leaks, I'm afraid to go online for fear some jackass is going to ruin it for me :/
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
As some wise kitten once said, "I has an update". this one is about the Puritans.

I double-checked a fact for my site -- the one about legalization of homosexuality in Canada happening before Stonewall -- and I was astonished to see how close it was.

Bill C-150, better known as the Omnibus Bill, was given royal assent in the afternoon of June 27, 1969 -- the final rubber stamp before a bill becomes law. Late that night and early the next morning, the Stonewall Riots began, and with them the beginning of legalization of homosexuality in the US.

There must've been something in the air that day.

Other than that, I'm working full time this week, but anime night is still on for tomorrow. Mostly this week, though, I'm looking forward to the Pötterdamerung ^_^
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
I have updated again, this time about the rise of homophobia in Britain.

I spent yesterday going over some truly ancient documents -- sessional papers of the Canadian parliament dating to 1867, and handwritten criminal accusations dating to the 1790s -- I actually got to hold these in my hands.

I'm looking very much forward to the Harry Potter, though, today. and I'm counting down to the book next Saturday. For the record, all plans are off that weekend ^_^
felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)
I updated -- this part is a revised version of the middle of that post I put up a couple of days ago, on the English Renaissance.

I wish I had a travel budget for this project. Some of records I'm in are in Hamilton, Ontario. Others are in Toronto, or in Quebec City.

I also love that the second warden of the the Kingston Pentitentiary had the name Donald Aeneas MacDonald. Given the story about the underworld, "Aeneas" is the perfect name for a prison warden. he also shows up in earlier court trials -- he seems to have been a reformed criminal himself.

It's funny, doing research like this -- reading the words of mostly-anonymous people long dead, you develop an affection for some of them, become interested in their stories.


felis_ultharus: The Pardoner from the Canterbury Tales (Default)

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