orbital cuisine

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chrispenycate

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It seems a bit cheeky me asking for a crit. when I've not been doing much myself recently. But I will be back, soon, promise.

I mentioned elsewhere that the piece I was working on floated halfway between pornography and infodump, and, to spare the sensibilities of younger members I've cut before the porn (which I'm attempting to tone down to merely erotic, anyway.

It's in first person, and as I intend the story to extend over at least 150 years, the lead character must change. Is first too intimate to follow a sequence of leads?

Vacuum hospitality

Every inhabitant of vacuum space, whether in Earth orbit or out where the real frontier is now, past the orbit of Jupiter, carries his own personal Van Allen belt. The stretchsuit we each wear not only protects against depressurisation, but the superconducting threads woven into it produce a magnetic field which captures incoming charged particles and prevents them from penetrating its occupant.

Obviously, every air locked region is treated the same way, be it ship, sleeping chamber or full habitat, and rotating habitats generally add a good thickness of water and rock between their inhabitants and cosmic radiation, around the cylinder rim, at least. On average, space-livers get less ionising radiation than dirtsiders; certainly than those in high mountain regions.

I didn't notice the bumpy feel of my daughter as she hugged me on her way in back then; any of my neighbours would have felt the same, had there been any I felt the slightest impulse to embrace.

"Daddy, these are Jarl and Immendia," she announced, ushering them in and, I was proud to see, running her finger down the environment monitor before unclipping her crotch box and waving to them to do the same. None, I noticed took advantage of the pack of modesty pads beside the sterilisers; they obviously knew each other well as the concealment skirts on the suits were not foolproof, and free fall can play some interesting tricks, even on the experienced.

Immendia I had seen before, at school affairs and parties; plain, plump and cheerful she wore her hair long; ten centimetres, not like the girls we got film of from Earth, but less practical than the five millimetres my daughter and I sported, or the smooth shaven head of their male companion. Jarl was young, open-faced, bright – and if he was intending to take on a pair of fourteen year-olds (almost fifteen, daddy) (and a very mature fifteen at that, dearling), considerably more courageous than I had been at his age.

I didn't think he was my daughter's life mate, but was wise enough by then to know how little my opinion mattered. All three wore conservative fluorescent orange skinsuits under their 'corridor clothes', to make them easier to detect in the improbable situation of a cave in or major decompression, and carried their helmets into the living room with them rather than leave them in the suiting area. So many youngsters nowadays have become lax (although, with the size of some student 'digs' (barely more than scratches) this is understandable). Certainly I've got spare, fully recharged helmets ready in all rooms, and generic crotch pads (hope you get rescued fast; the non-customised models are nothing you would want to spend any extended time in, or use for their primary function), but good habits are to be encouraged.

"If you're busy we can go into my room."

The tone that phrase was delivered in would have translated from wifese as 'You'd farding well not be busy; you knew I'd be turning up with company'. With my daughter it was a little more nuanced – she understood better than most adults and almost all wives, how important I considered my work; not that it was more important than her, but less tolerant, less tough. And I no longer did it for the money (or equivalent in goods; twice in my lifetime credit squeezes or tax regulations, imposed from Earth by people who only only understood planet based economies, and not much of them, had forced us into barter, before there were enough of us to impose our own independent currency, our own banks, against the screams of the planet-bound authorities; so much raw material now came from outside), but because I believed it was essential for the community, and ultimately humanity.

"Nothing too important to drop for my beautiful princess; we don't get enough time together, what with your work and mine, and I would stop anything to be with you."

The only lie there was the beauty. Oh, her slender body under the stretchsuit was supple and athletic, putting her girlfriend to shame, but her eyes were slightly too large, her nose not pronounced enough to balance them, the total impression leaning towards 'cute' rather than 'stunning'. Until that rather too wide mouth grinned, as it did at my words, and illuminated the room, and I hadn't been lying at all.

"If you find drinks and nibbles, I'll start preparing food. Anyone allergic to anything? Anything at all; you never know what will be in something I cook."

Eyes fought their way back from attempting not to goggle at my living room, which was almost the size of their school's assembly hall with walls apparently completely packed with gadgetry, and guide ropes to the central space.

Immendia spoke up. "Um. I don't really go for insect protein – too much of it at home, before I left. It hasn't killed me, though," she said, indicating her not inconsiderable bulk, "so as long as it's not too prominent…"

"All right then, cockroach is off. No more no-nos?"

I might have the only free fall private kitchen in the belt. Probably not, as enough people have visited and been impressed to have engendered several copies by now, but I was definitely a pioneer. I'd got the idea from a seriously rich downsider living in the counterweight of the B beanstalk, who'd brought his cook up with him (and his valet and hairdresser, but them I saw no reason to emulate). I had been living on concentrates and dehydrates (moistened with my own distilled urine. Don't ever believe them when they tell you all the taste is eliminated by the purification process) for the preceding three months, and it was fortunate we'd done our negotiating before the flavour shock, or I'd probably have been on my knees worshipping him. That was in lunaspin, where at least the pans, and their contents, tend to stay on the stove; I'd gone a step further out.

Food cooked in space is sterile. It's prepared according to recipes, with computer controlled temperature and timing. For food to be more than mere body fuel you need to smell it, taste samples feel textures. And in free fall this involves the risk of boiling soup, or even hotter frying bits exploding, scalding and burning.

So kilotonnes of prepackaged nourishment left Earth every day and vegetables, tissue culture, fungi and portions of the various animals farmed in habitats' life support regions were treated to attempt to achieve the same generalised homogeneity. Not that it was all tasteless or bland; there were some powerful curries and chili con carnes out there, but it was all soulless.

During my rich, solitary years (pre Magdelaine) I had applied my excess inventiveness and free time to producing vessels that would allow the scented steam into the room without releasing hot liquids, or solids, allow samples to be extracted and additional seasoning added, all without the meal setting off toward the extraction grill; all hand crafted, mostly by me. Back then it was mainly a source of experimentation, as cooking for one is a sad affair, but with the delight my daughter expressed over her first home cooked meal, the hobby had taken on an extra dimension. Now I am probably the best free fall chef in the solar system, not to mention quite likely the only one.

Dorados that had grown up in life support algae tanks were wrapped in foil from Jupiter's moons, along with celery and onions grown by mirror light, mushrooms that would pop up anywhere and herbs whose carefully hoarded seeds had germinated here, in my own quarters. And lumps of the ubiquitous guinea pig flesh were transpierced with skewers and set rotating before an open methane flame, basted with a sauce thick enough not to tend to escape once it had stuck to the surface.

Readouts told me temperatures and pressures of vegetables in transparent containers that didn't bubble as the water in them boiled, but nonetheless wafted fragrant steam into the atmosphere.

You mustn't think that Mad and I ate like this every day; for one thing, it took far too long. Mostly we microwaved packages, like the rabble. But when she brought back guests it was a great excuse to show off a little, and let her show me off, which I enjoyed too.
 
Good work on the details. I had the feeling of being in a free fall habitation. Some of the descriptions went on a bit too long--especially those in parentheses. Consider this sentence:

And I no longer did it for the money (or equivalent in goods; twice in my lifetime credit squeezes or tax regulations, imposed from Earth by people who only only understood planet based economies, and not much of them, had forced us into barter, before there were enough of us to impose our own independent currency, our own banks, against the screams of the planet-bound authorities; so much raw material now came from outside), but because I believed it was essential for the community, and ultimately humanity.
That's a bit much, maybe better worked out somewhere else?

I didn't notice the bumpy feel of my daughter as she hugged me on her way in back then; any of my neighbours would have felt the same, had there been any I felt the slightest impulse to embrace.
This (the red) seems a bit awkwardly phrased.

Some of the terminology took a bit of a jump for me to understand, although I got most of it in context--e.g., crotch box. Overall, I felt pulled into a strange new world and would like to see what happens to this family in free fall.

As an aside:
I mentioned elsewhere that the piece I was working on floated halfway between pornography and infodump, and, to spare the sensibilities of younger members I've cut before the porn (which I'm attempting to tone down to merely erotic, anyway.

where do you draw the line there--what is for you 'merely erotic'?
 
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Chrispy,

Good work. Interesting concept of free-fall. I don't think the cooking thing was over done. I might even have liked a little more info about the nature of the pots, seasoning, etc. Even without the "erotica" it had the feel of building up to something of that nature. Probably the comment that the 15 year old was taking on 2, 14 year old females was what made my antennas go up. My overwhelming feeling was that I'd just been dropped into the middle of something, which is what I was, I'd guess. There were quite a number of off-handed comments which made me go.. Hm, I wonder what that's all about? i.e. "barter system," "previously rich," "no cockroaches," and the like.
 
Ah, my eternal parenthetical interventions. Perhaps I should take to footnotes – or perhaps even better, junk everything within brackets.

The red bit – a comma after "in"? No, you're right, needs clarifying.

And he is going to attempt a docking manoeuvre, describing which is going to require some titillating language, but I can perhaps avoid the more precise mechanical details about Newtonian action and reaction, using that famous theorem of James Clerk Maxwell:-
''Gin a body meet a body
Flyin' through the air,
Gin a body hit a body,
Will it fly? and where?''

Parson

Thanks for the comment. More cooking details? I was convinced I'd already bored everyone to tears. Why should you think I know how each of the cooking devices works, and have little diagrams of filters, stirring mechanisms and heating elements that would work in free fall, either industrial or personal? Ah, you've met me before.

Yes, the middle of something; I've got a bit over 18,000 words of this project actually in the computer, but I think I prefer first person, so most has to be rewritten, which is fine. There's at least that much more in notebooks, to be transcribed, so I don't think it's going to fit in the short story format I had intended it for. Trouble is, I have so much information that needs to be transmitted I'm telling far more than showing – and Magdelaine (Mad) is developing into her rôle of principal character, and no doubt 1st person POV, which is head pole-vaulting, not merely triple jump.
 
Well 90-word sentences are fine if you can pull them off without losing the reader.
And this sentence
any of my neighbours would have felt the same, had there been any (which) I felt the slightest impulse to embrace.
maybe: 'were there any I felt the slightest..." ?
 
Vacuum hospitality

Every inhabitant of vacuum space, whether in Earth orbit or out where the real frontier is now, past the orbitrepeat of orbit - is there another term which could be used? of Jupiter, carries his own personal Van Allen belt. The stretchsuit we each wear not only protects against depressurisation, but the superconducting threads woven into it produce a magnetic field which captures incoming charged particles and prevents them from penetrating its occupant.I think it depends what you want from this. For Space Opera/soft sci fi I'd find this way too much information and would just accept the suit works, for hard sci fi I'm thinking the readers might add two and two without the detail?

Obviously, every air locked region is treated the same way, be it ship, sleeping chamber or full habitat, and rotating habitats generally add a good thickness of water and rock between their inhabitants and cosmic radiation, around the cylinder rim, at least. On average, space-livers get less ionising radiation than dirtsiders; certainly than those in high mountain regions.

I didn't notice the bumpy feel of my daughter as she hugged me on her way in back thenthis sentence made me read it a couple of times. I think it was the "on her way in back then" that seemed a little overcomplicated - we have coming in, and then a back, which I know is to do with time, but my little brain got sore about then. ; any of my neighbours would have felt the same, had there been any I felt the slightest impulse to embrace.like this.

"Daddy, these are Jarl and Immendia," she announced, ushering themI'd like a little more detail in and, I was proud to see, running her finger down the environment monitor before unclipping her crotch box and waving to them to do the same. None, I noticedI think you either need a comma here or to lose the one before the I :)o, but feel very presumptuous even mentioning it as I am a punc. amoeba) took advantage of the pack of modesty pads beside the sterilisers; they obviously knew each other well as the concealment skirts on the suits were not foolproof, and free fall can play some interesting tricks, even on the experienced.

Immendia I had seen before, at school affairs and parties;given the complexity of the sentence, I'd prefer a colon here. plain, plump and cheerful she wore her hair long; ten centimetres, not like the girls we got film of from Earth, but less practical than the five millimetres my daughter and I sported, or the smooth shaven head of their male companion. Jarl was young, open-facedwhat does this mean?, bright – and if he was intending to take on a pair of fourteen year-olds (almost fifteen, daddynice) (and a very mature fifteen at that, dearlingeven nicer. ),even though it complicates things further I think you need an -- here to close the parenthesis. I'm also wondering, seeing your comments to Parson if footnotes wouldn't have made this more effective, as we're definitely hearing an aside voice, which works really well, and which a reader might like to seek out seperately from the sentence. considerably more courageous than I had been at his age.

I didn't think he was my daughter's life mate, but was wise enough by then to know how little my opinion mattered. All three wore conservative fluorescent orange skinsuits under their 'corridor clothes', to make them easier to detect in the improbable situation of a cave in or major decompression, and carried their helmets into the living room with themI'd drop this with them since you come to a different them in a moment, plus it would, maybe, be a little tighter? rather than leave them in the suiting area. So many youngsters nowadays have become lax (although, with the size of some student 'digs' (barely more than scratches) this is understandable). Certainly I've got spare, fully recharged helmets ready in all rooms, and generic crotch pads (hope you get rescued fast; the non-customised models are nothing you would want to spend any extended time in, or use for their primary function), but good habits are to be encouraged.

"If you're busy we can go into my room."

The tone that phrase was delivered in would have translated from wifese as 'You'd farding well not be busy; you knew I'd be turning up with company'. With my daughter it was a little more nuanced – she understood better than most adults and almost all wives, how important I considered my work; not that it was more important than her, but less tolerant, less tough. And I no longer did it for the money (or equivalent in goods; twice in my lifetime credit squeezes or tax regulations, imposed from Earth by people who only only understood planet based economies, and not much of them, had forced us into barter, before there were enough of us to impose our own independent currency, our own banks, against the screams of the planet-bound authorities; so much raw material now came from outsideI'm pretty tolerant of long sentences, but this one stretched me. I think it could be broken somewhere (although I'm not entirely sure where ;))), but because I believed it was essential for the community, and ultimately humanity.

"Nothing too important to drop for my beautiful princess;full stop? we don't get enough time together, what with your work and mine, and I would stop anything to be with you."

The only lie there was the beauty. Oh, her slender body under the stretchsuit was supple and athletic, putting her girlfriend to shame, but her eyes were slightly too large, her nose not pronounced enough to balance them, the total impression leaning towards 'cute' rather than 'stunning'. Until that rather too wide mouth grinned, as it did at my words, and illuminated the room, and I hadn't been lying at all.This is such a lovely, mock-grumpy paragraph.

"If you find drinks and nibbles, I'll start preparing food. Anyone allergic to anything? Anything at all; you never know what will be in something I cook."

Eyes fought their way back from attempting not to goggle at my living room, which was almost the size of their school's assembly hall with walls apparently completely packed with gadgetry, and guide ropes to the central space.

Immendia spoke up. "Um. I don't really go for insect protein – too much of it at home, before I left. It hasn't killed me, though," she said, indicating her not inconsiderable bulk, "so as long as it's not too prominent…"

"All right then, cockroach is off. No more no-nos?"

I might have the only free fall private kitchen in the belt. Probably not, as enough people have visited and been impressed to have engendered several copies by now, but I was definitely a pioneer. I'd got the idea from a seriously rich downsider living in the counterweight of the B beanstalk, who'd brought his cook up with him (and his valet and hairdresser, but them I saw no reason to emulate). I had been living on concentrates and dehydrates (moistened with my own distilled urine. Don't ever believe them when they tell you all the taste is eliminated by the purification process) for the preceding three months, and it was fortunate we'd done our negotiating before the flavour shock, or I'd probably have been on my knees worshipping him. That was in lunaspin, where at least the pans, and their contents, tend to stay on the stove; I'd gone a step further out.

Food cooked in space is sterile. It's prepared according to recipes, with computer controlled temperature and timing. For food to be more than mere body fuel you need to smell it, taste samples feel textures. And in free fall this involves the risk of boiling soup, or even hotter frying bits exploding, scalding and burning.

So kilotonnes of prepackaged nourishment left Earth every day and vegetables, tissue culture, fungi and portions of the various animals farmed in habitats' life support regions were treated to attempt to achieve the same generalised homogeneity. Not that it was all tasteless or bland; there were some powerful curries and chili con carnes out there, but it was all soulless.

During my rich, solitary years (pre Magdelaine) I had applied my excess inventiveness and free time to producing vessels that would allow the scented steam into the room without releasing hot liquids, or solids, allow samples to be extracted and additional seasoning added, all without the meal setting off toward the extraction grill; all hand crafted, mostly by me. Back then it was mainly a source of experimentation, as cooking for one is a sad affair, but with the delight my daughter expressed over her first home cooked meal, the hobby had taken on an extra dimension. Now I am probably the best free fall chef in the solar system, not to mention quite likely the only one.It's probably too much detail for me, Chrispy, but I suspect there are loads of sci fi readers who'd just drink it up. :)

Dorados that had grown up in life support algae tanks were wrapped in foil from Jupiter's moons, along with celery and onions grown by mirror light, mushrooms that would pop up anywhere and herbs whose carefully hoarded seeds had germinated here, in my own quarters. And lumps of the ubiquitous guinea pig flesh were transpierced with skewers and set rotating before an open methane flame, basted with a sauce thick enough not to tend to escape once it had stuck to the surface.

Readouts told me temperatures and pressures of vegetables in transparent containers that didn't bubble as the water in them boiled, but nonetheless wafted fragrant steam into the atmosphere.

You mustn't think that Mad and I ate like this every day; for one thing, it took far too long. Mostly we microwaved packages, like the rabble. But when she brought back guests it was a great excuse to show off a little, and let her show me off, which I enjoyed too.[/QUOTE]

I liked it. I enjoyed his voice and humour. I did find the info quite heavy, but it was pretty cool sci fi with it, so I think this wouldn't be a barrier to many. Some sentences were chewy enough! Mostly it didn't get in my way - but I quite like long sentences, or so my grammar checker keeps telling me - but there were one or two where I tripped up. I think the footnotes idea is really good. And you had all your apostrophes in the right places ;) (I think...:))
 
I had a quick read of this piece. My reaction is that there is too much concentrated information here. It might please those who are really into this sort of thing, but is likely to put off those who are mainly looking for a story. Personally, I found there was a strong temptation to skim. Not badly written, though.
BTW, I used to read SF and have a background in engineering :)
 
I love it, especially the father-daughter relationshop and the free-fall cooking! I'd like to see that. Yes, there is some info-dumping, but that's easily sorted. I'll happily read more.

It's in first person, and as I intend the story to extend over at least 150 years, the lead character must change. Is first too intimate to follow a sequence of leads? Maybe. Is this a family saga? If not, how will you maintain continuity?

Vacuum hospitality
Every inhabitant of vacuum space, whether in Earth orbit or out where the real frontier is now, past the orbit of Jupiter, carries his own personal Van Allen belt. The stretchsuit we each wear not only protects against depressurisation, but the superconducting threads woven into it produce a magnetic field which captures incoming charged particles and prevents them from penetrating its occupant. Info dump - it might be needed, but not as the opening paragraph.


Obviously, every air locked region is treated the same way, be it ship, sleeping chamber or full habitat, and rotating habitats generally add a good thickness of water and rock between their inhabitants and cosmic radiation, around the cylinder rim, at least. On average, space-livers get less ionising radiation than dirtsiders; certainly than those in high mountain regions. Ditto

I didn't notice the bumpy feel of my daughter as she hugged me on her way in back then; I didn’t make sense of this phrase any of my neighbours would have felt the same, had there been any I felt the slightest impulse to embrace.

"Daddy, these are this is Jarl and Immendia," she announced, ushering them in and, I was proud to see, running her finger down the environment monitor before unclipping her crotch box and waving to them to do the same. None, I noticed comma took advantage of the pack of modesty pads beside the sterilisers; they obviously knew each other well as the concealment skirts on the suits were not foolproof, and free fall can play some interesting tricks, even on the experienced. This bit seemed initially to suggest they weren’t fussed about modestly and went on to hint they should have been.

Immendia I had seen before, at school affairs and parties; plain, plump and cheerful she wore her hair long; ten centimetres, not like the girls we got film of from Earth, but less practical than the five millimetres my daughter and I sported, or the smooth shaven head of their male companion. Jarl was young, open-faced, bright – and if he was intending to take on a pair of fourteen year-olds (almost fifteen, daddy) (and a very mature fifteen at that, dearling), considerably more courageous than I had been at his age.

I didn't think he was my daughter's life mate, but was wise enough by then to know how little my opinion mattered. All three wore conservative fluorescent orange skinsuits under their 'corridor clothes', to make them easier to detect in the improbable situation of a cave in or major decompression - here’s where a little of the opening paragraph info dump might be used, and carried their helmets into the living room with them rather than leave them in the suiting area. So many youngsters nowadays have become lax (although, with the size of some student 'digs' (barely more than scratches) this is understandable). Certainly I've got spare, fully recharged helmets ready in all rooms, and generic crotch pads (hope you get rescued fast; the non-customised models are nothing you would want to spend any extended time in, or use for their primary function), but good habits are to be encouraged.

"If you're busy we can go into my room."

The tone that phrase was delivered in would have translated from wifese as 'You'd farding well not be busy; you knew I'd be turning up with company'. With my daughter it was a little more nuanced – she understood better than most adults and almost all wives, how important I considered my work; not that it was more important than her, but less tolerant, less tough. And I no longer did it for the money (or equivalent in goods; twice in my lifetime credit squeezes or tax regulations, imposed from Earth by people who only only understood planet based economies, and not much of them, had forced us into barter, before there were enough of us to impose our own independent currency, our own banks, against the screams of the planet-bound authorities; so much raw material now came from outside), but because I believed it was essential for the community, and ultimately humanity.

"Nothing too important to drop for my beautiful princess; we don't get enough time together, what with your work and mine, and I would stop anything to be with you."

The only lie there was the beauty. Oh, her slender body under the stretchsuit was supple and athletic, putting her girlfriend to shame, but her eyes were slightly too large, her nose not pronounced enough to balance them, the total impression leaning towards 'cute' rather than 'stunning'. Until that rather too wide mouth grinned, as it did at my words, and illuminated the room, and I hadn't been lying at all.

"If you find drinks and nibbles, I'll start preparing food. Anyone allergic to anything? Anything at all; you never know what will be in something I cook."

Eyes fought their way back from attempting not to goggle at my living room, which was almost the size of their school's assembly hall with walls apparently completely packed with gadgetry, and guide ropes to the central space.

Immendia spoke up. "Um. I don't really go for insect protein – too much of it at home, before I left. It hasn't killed me, though," she said, indicating her not inconsiderable bulk, "so as long as it's not too prominent…"

"All right then, cockroach is off. No more no-nos?"

I might have the only free fall private kitchen in the belt. Probably not, as enough people have visited and been impressed to have engendered several copies by now, but I was definitely a pioneer. I'd got the idea from a seriously rich downsider living in the counterweight of the B beanstalk, who'd brought his cook up with him (and his valet and hairdresser, but them I saw no reason to emulate). I had been living on concentrates and dehydrates (moistened with my own distilled urine. Don't ever believe them when they tell you all the taste is eliminated by the purification process) for the preceding three months, and it was fortunate we'd done our negotiating before the flavour shock, or I'd probably have been on my knees worshipping him. That was in lunaspin, where at least the pans, and their contents, tend to stay on the stove; I'd gone a step further out.

Food cooked in space is sterile. It's prepared according to recipes, with computer controlled temperature and timing. For food to be more than mere body fuel you need to smell it, taste samples feel textures. And in free fall this involves the risk of boiling soup, or even hotter frying bits exploding, scalding and burning.

So kilotonnes of prepackaged nourishment left Earth every day and vegetables, tissue culture, fungi and portions of the various animals farmed in habitats' life support regions were treated to attempt to achieve the same generalised homogeneity. Not that it was all tasteless or bland; there were some powerful curries and chili con carnes out there, but it was all soulless.

During my rich, solitary years (pre Magdelaine) I had applied my excess inventiveness and free time to producing vessels that would allow the scented steam into the room without releasing hot liquids, or solids, allow samples to be extracted and additional seasoning added, all without the meal setting off toward the extraction grill; all hand crafted, mostly by me. Back then it was mainly a source of experimentation, as cooking for one is a sad affair, but with the delight my daughter expressed over her first home cooked meal, the hobby had taken on an extra dimension. Now I am probably the best free fall chef in the solar system, not to mention quite likely the only one.

Dorados that had grown up in life support algae tanks were wrapped in foil from Jupiter's moons, along with celery and onions grown by mirror light, mushrooms that would pop up anywhere and herbs whose carefully hoarded seeds had germinated here, in my own quarters. And lumps of the ubiquitous guinea pig flesh were transpierced with skewers and set rotating before an open methane flame, basted with a sauce thick enough not to tend to escape once it had stuck to the surface.

Readouts told me temperatures and pressures of vegetables in transparent containers that didn't bubble as the water in them boiled, but nonetheless wafted fragrant steam into the atmosphere.

You mustn't think that Mad and I ate like this every day; for one thing, it took far too long. Mostly we microwaved packages, like the rabble. But when she brought back guests it was a great excuse to show off a little, and let her show me off, which I enjoyed too.
 
The only problem I had was that one sentence everyone else complains about. I couldn't understand that at all, even after three readings. And I am myself in a quest for some way to write a sentence that will span multiple paragraphs, while still following standard English rules.

The one thing I really like is your apparent knowledge that spacesuits of the future are actually much more likely to be tighter than second skins instead of the inflated tires we wear today. That and the fact that cockroaches are truly tasty.

I agree that once we start colonising the outer planets our culture might once again recognise that people under 18 are actually sexual beings. Until sometime closer to that, however, you should keep aware of Parson's veiled warning that many publishers do not consider that to be true nowadays.
 
As far as I’m concerned, you’ve earned crits by return and far more, your help has been invaluable to me. I may still do comma splices in dialogue, but at least the majority of them will be by choice these days; some always slip through.

You have a very interesting writing voice Chrispy, a voice that did carry me to the end of the section. I have no problem with the 1st person, that worked well as the tone of the character came across.

I did wonder why there was not even a little bit of spin used for gravity in the living sections. Some spin would be better for the long term health of a person, and I think a little easier to cook in. It would also keep stuff from floating around in an unwelcome manner. I was reminded of the lack of gravity by the cooking more than once, and it made me wonder is all.

To be honest, as much as I like the section, I don’t know how much more I could read on. Too much detail is mixed up in the narration, detail that most SciFi readers will be familiar with. However, the idea of using taste and cooking to express the living conditions in space was cool. Yet half the section was food related, all from the 1st person when the bit I liked was Immendia’s answer to cockroach. Immendia’s answer was for me character development, quickly followed by detail, a lot it very interesting, but what still felt like work to get through. Yet I’ve made careful note of some of the ideas and may well pinch a few – what can I say!

I think your writing voice will get you some fans, it’s strong and clear. For me, too much detail that kills the pace, less is more sometimes.
 
Would "Back then I didn't notice the bumpy feel of my daughter as she hugged me on her way in; any of my neighbours would have felt the same, had I felt the slightest impulse to embrace any of them." work any better?

I've dumped the second paragraph and am trying to drastically cut down the 'comparative economics' paragraph (perhaps eliminate it entirely, as it's covered elsewhere in the story, and this is more of an added detail – and I'm not exactly short of detail;))

I still have too many parenthetical interventions (and soon extra parents)

Parson :– the youngsters might have been going to play scrabble?

Springs :- I've put "past Jupiter" instead of the orbit bit.

ushering themI'd like a little more detail in – What can you say about a teenager bringing friends into the family home? That they're swimming like fish and pulling themselves along with handholds? that's obvious.

And thank you for liking his pride in his not ravishing (except for him) daughter.

Prizzley:- Yeah, I'm grooming Magdelaine (Mad) as POV character for the interstellar section, and an (as yet unborn) grandson for the terraforming/freefall showdown.

Rajit is a bit of a prude, really, but tries to match his daughter's attitude -not always successfully.

Joan Drake In a culture where reproduction is practically entirely separated from copulation, where sex education starts barely after vacuum emergency suit drill and pregnancy is impossible before removal of an implant installed at about five (depending on whether the parents decide to haul children out of the safe, bone-building centrifugal environments; this is largely a nomad culture) I reasoned that experimentation would start much earlier. Of course Rajit, as one of the first generation born in space, didn't have this advantage (and was a swot, besides).

Bowler:- rotating the asteroid would take more energy than is conveniently available. It's just a lump of rock, and even if it were spinning he's paranoid, and dug in too deep to get much benefit from it. He's obscenely rich by this point, and has his own centrifuge wheel built into one wall of the living room, so if he had a dish that absolutely required gravity he could spin it up and toss pancakes or whatever inside, but he's showing off, too (now, crêpes suzette in free fall; that would be a challenge).

So, thank everybody very much; I have taken notice of your comments (Parson want's more food, who's on a diet then?, everybody else thinks I'm too long winded) and the next bit (not the very next bit, that's just the meal, just after that) isn't yet family suitable.

Which details could I assume people will know? The stretchsuits are, as far as I know, unique to me, the cooking is inessential but I find gives a perspective (as does the bathroom, a scene later on, but others have attempted that).
 
Which is why you employ me to do it for you:D. And come up with more ideas for Bowler to 'adopt'.

I perfer "borrow", like the banks do (as in, take and not return, or ever intend to return). ;)

The extra detail does help, Chrispy and the lack of spin does of course fit well.
 
I really don't want to think about a free fall bathroom.

True story, (though I don't remember where I heard it and have no idea of how to search for it.)

In the early days of Project Mercury the first provisions made for urination of the all male cadre of astronauts had to be tightly fitted. Three sizes were made and labeled accordingly as small, medium and large. One astronaut suggested these be changed to enormous, gigantic and humoungus. (whether this was ever done I don't know) :p
 
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