AtH FAQ and BBQ 2.0 – Compiled by TXRed

AtH FAQ and BBQ 2.0 – Compiled by TXRed


NOTICE: This blog carries a permanent CLASS IV BEVERAGE WARNING. The management is not responsible for damaged keyboards, screens, or laptops, or for episodes of choking or coffee snorting. Do not read this blog while drinking. And don’t say you weren’t warned. Sincerely, Fluffy, Athena, and Attila, Attorneys-out-Law.


  • What’s AtH? According to Hoyt is Sarah Hoyt’s blog, where the Beautiful but Evil Space Princess™ muses, discusses, and argues with various and sundry Huns and Hoydens about life, the multiverse, and almost everything except those Things Skippy is Not Allowed to Do Anymore (see below)


  • Who’s Sarah Hoyt? Sarah A. Hoyt is an American who happened to be born in Portugal but got to the US as fast as she could. She’s an award wining author, wife, mother, servant to housecats, and blogger. She’s also the Evil but Beautiful Space Princess ™ in the Evil League of Evil ™, a group of author/bloggers dedicated to truth, justice, great writing, and shooting VileProg fish in their ideological barrel.


  • OK, I got that part. But what’s a Hun and Hoyden? The Huns (gents) and Hoydens (ladies), collectively called Hoyts Huns, are the core of readers who skip work, ah, take a few moments of the day to drop by, hurl puns, dodge carp, and solve the world’s problems by leaving it ruthlessly alone. The Huns welcome newcomers and passers by as long as you are not being an idiot or a troll. Spambots Sarah dismantles and uses the parts for other projects.


  • I’ve noticed some strange acronyms and terms that I can’t find on [searchengine]. As with many websites, AtH has abbreviations imported from the finest sources on the Web.

C4C – comment for comments, in order to get the thread via e-mail. This often turns into a contest, with things like aircraft designators (C4C followed by F4F, B-17, SBD, FW190 and so on) or dice rolls (2D6, 2D20), or firearms (.243, .30-.06) or visual puns (T42 followed with 24T, then 2B2B2 and so on).

SJW – Social Justice Warrior, or Whiner, or Weenie, or Wacko. A person fixated on fighting perceived social ills and injustices, one who is determined to improve people’s lives even if it means making them miserable, oppressed, slaves of the benevolent agencies of the State. A proud supporter of Marxism “for the Children!”

GHH –  Glittery Hoo-hah. Originally used to describe badly-written characters who used the magical power of their female anatomy to make men love them. Picked up to mean some third-wave feminists (womynists) who seem to believe that possessing estrogen and a vagina makes them both downtrodden victims and possessed of Grrrrl Power, which they inflict on everyone around them.

Grey Goo – depressing, often painfully literary message fiction that (usually but not always) bashes men, the free-market, traditions, humans in general, science and the human spirit. Why science fiction has been in the doldrums for the past 15 years or so (see Human Wave below)

RAH – Robert Anson Heinlein (PBUH) – American science fiction writer, his works are one of the major influences on Sarah and the Huns.

MGC – Mad Genius Club – a group blog by writers about writing and life, but mostly the writing life, publishing follies, and such.

Odd (as opposed to just odd) – those who march to a different drummer, tinker with things to make them better, boldly go where no man has gone before, and tend to be “That Uncle/ Aunt” at the family reunion.

VileProg –  follower of the Progressive political movement, often a SJW of some form.

BBQ – proof that [deity] loves us and want us to be happy. Many Hun parties involve BBQ in some form, adult libations, really good coffee or tea, side-dishes, and trying to get the cthulumari to stay out of the boat.

To carp –  the punishment for especially bad puns is to be hit with a carp launched from the carp cannon, carpbuchet, ICBCM, or thrown by Sarah. Thus the “I’ve been carped” shirts.

Raiding Party – Those Huns/Hoydens with guest post privileges, some of whom (Kilted Dave [Dave Pascoe], Kate Paulk, Cedar Sanderson, Amanda Green, Alma Boykin) do pretty-much-regular guest posts. Many also act as referees in the comments section.

Baaad (as in “you are a Baaadd man/woman”) – giving Sarah story ideas, producing especially lousy (good-bad) puns, really good double entendres, and instigating fun mischief often leads to her announcing “You are a BAAAAAD man” or woman.

Human Wave – see below.

Usaian – a follower of the banned faith in the Earth Revolution series; Huns who pledge allegiance to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness and who believe that all men are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, that rights and power flow from the people to the state, and who generally agree that the state should be no larger than absolutely necessary. July 4 is the Usaian High Holy Day, to be honored with speeches, the reading of sacred texts, BBQ, picnics, and fireworks. Usaians may also follow a supplemental faith (religion), but many do not. See A Few Good Men, and Through Fire, along with the related short stories and blog posts, for more details.


  • What does WordPress Delenda Est mean? WordPress must be destroyed, a phrase uttered by frustrated bloggers and commenters when the blogging software eats posts, eats comments, hides pictures, swallows attachments, and generally acts up. Most often uttered after WP upgrades and improves its software.
  • How do I get cool effects, or just italics? Joel Solomon provided the following guide:

          It works like this: <i>‹text you want italicized›</i>. The format “<‹tagname›>” is an HTML start-tag and “<‹/tagname›>” is its corresponding end-tag. WordPress allows certain tags in comments and ignores most others. Which ones? why, that’s for you to discover by trial and error—and the rules vary from blog to blog, and between updates of themes. These work on ATH and MGC, at least:
• <i>—</i> for italicized text;
• <em>—</em> for emphasized text, which is italicized;
• <b>—</b> for bold text;
• <strong>—</strong> for strong emphasis (bold);
• <u>—</u> for underlined text;
• <del>—</del> for , i.e., struck-through, text;

  • <a href=”‹some URL here›”>—</a> for a link to some other website
    • <blockquote>—</blockquote> for a specially formatted (often indented and sometimes italicized) block-quote;
    (How to create the examples I’ve shown is more complicated; search for [HTML entities] for more information than most of you want.)

We’re pretty forgiving about goof-ups in coding, though it is traditional to follow up a post in which you’ve badly misformatted something, and which you now cannot edit, with a post proclaiming, “WordPress delenda est.”


  • OK, I gotta ask. Who is Skippy and what’s he not allowed to do? Glad you asked. Skippy is that creative, problem-solving guy in the Army who is a bit too effective for his superior officers’ peace-of-mind. There is an ever-growing list of things Skippy is no longer allowed to do.

             In the interests of galactic peace, world harmony, and not restarting [insert armed conflict here], certain topics are off limits on this blog. If newcomers or impassioned regulars get close, Sarah or one of the senior Huns will issue a “hey gang, topic closed” warning. Ignoring the warning will get you disciplined or banned. Topics currently off limits include: theology, American Civil War, why Karl Marx was a good guy and his ideas are worth spreading, reproductive rights (AKA abortion-related anything), and whether American football or baseball is the real National Pastime (theology), and Mac vs. PC (see theology again).

Ad Hominem attacks will get you blocked faster than you can say boo. Disagree with our opinions, show up with data to support your argument, that’s fine. Personal insults are not. We are serious about this! Do not go after each other in the comments, do not claim “you don’t understand what I’m saying,” or “you’re too [ignorant] to get what I mean.” No. This applies to Huns and Hoydens as well as visitors. Do not go there.

Don’t shill your book every time you stop by. That’s what your own blog/website/Twitter feed, Facebook are for. If you have a new release, and want it considered for the Sunday Book Pimping and Writing Prompt page, follow the directions found on the Sunday Book Pimping and Writing Prompt articles.

{Group} supremacist comments or links are prohibited. Do not conflate race or gender with culture, for that way lies banning.

Unnecessary swearing is unnecessary. Try to keep it PG-13.

Trying to be “cute” by, as Sarah TBBESP says “if you use a swear word in your name and/or make threats against the blog owner or commenters, you will not get approved. ‘I bet you won’t approve this’ my sore ass.”  You Have Been Warned.


  • What’s wrong with theology? I see some of the Huns talking about religion all the time. Because the readers and followers of this blog range from Orthodox Jewish to Roman Catholic to Evangelical Protestant to Asatru and other forms of what is currently called pagan, to “Yes,” to Orthodox Atheist (as much as any Hun can be considered orthodox) and we try to all get along. If there are specific questions about certain facets of a religion, that’s one thing. Arguing theology is off limits. Bashing all religions (being an anti-theist) is also off the table. If you get close to the edge, a regular will ask you to stop. Do so.


  • Are comments moderated? Yes and no. If you include more than one web link, your post will go to moderation. Happens even to long-time Huns, so don’t take it personally. It’s just WordPress being WordPress. Sarah will moderate trolls, idiots, and egregiously rude twerps. It’s her house, her rules. To repeat “if you use a swear word in your name and/or make threats against the blog owner or commenters, you will not get approved. ‘I bet you won’t approve this’ my sore ass.” Oh, yes. And some days, WordPress will kick all of us into moderation just because it is being WordPress. WordPress Delenda Est!


  • Why were puppies sad? They were sad because they couldn’t find many fun, people-positive, well-written, and exciting and enchanting books to read. Since then, a whole lot of things changed, among them the creation of the Dragon Award. The Dragon Award is a fan-choice award administered by DragonCon™, and it has become the coveted award for Human Wave authors. Oh, and we also covet Benjamins (also called sawbucks, dinero, gelt, pelf, filthy lucre, you know.)


  • I followed a link about Human Wave books here. What’s Human Wave? Human-positive books that are fun to read and don’t beat you over the head with message. See this post, and this one, and this one. Human Wave is part of the Superversive movement in many ways. Human Wave authors include Sarah, Larry Correia, John C. Wright, L. Jagi Lamplighter, Kate Paulk, Robert Heinlein, Celia Hays, Alma Boykin, Sam Schall, Cedar Sanderson, Dave Pascoe, Amanda Green, Peter Grant, and others. Some are published by Baen Books, most are also indie or small-press.


  • I like this place. How can I support it? Buy Sarah’s books! Buy several, give them to friends, to strangers, donate them to your local Friends of the Library book sale, recommend them to your book club. Sarah writes science fiction, fantasy, urban fantasy, historical fantasy, historical mysteries, cozies, and other genres. Look for Sarah A. Hoyt, Sarah D’Almeida, or Elise Hyatt. There’s also a rumor that she wrote several of the Time-Life home repair and improvement books under a deep penname, but that’s strictly rumor. Buy shirts from her shop.


  • Who compiled this page? TXRed (aka Alma Boykin), with a lot of input from other Huns, including Joel Solomon.


  • How do I get a cool picture instead of a monster? Aaannd what’s wrong with monsters? Go to Gravitar and set up an account with a log-in and picture, that’s the easiest way.


  • Where’s the party? In the interdimensional/transdimensional diner/bar/coffee house/reading room/shop/loading dock/observatory/film screening room/writers’ retreat/Martian flat-cat petting zoo. You’ll know when you find it.


  • OK, anything else I need to know? Let’s see. Don’t mess with the settings on the coffee maker or Jeff will get unhappy. He just got it reset after the last person dinked with it. If you bring beer to share, bring the good stuff. There’s a kosher BBQ rig and a non-kosher, so look carefully before you toss meat onto the grills out back – when in doubt, ask Jeff, Eamon, Bearcat, Uncle Lar, Joel, one of the (at the moment) Three Bobs, or one of the other guys standing around the BBQ rigs. Orvan the Minotaur is mostly harmless. Don’t annoy the dragon(s). Stay out of Fluffy’s cave and the Sea Monster’s pool if you want to survive your visit. No, we have not found out who is responsible for the mess in the third room on the left, second-and-a-half floor, and don’t open that door!


If the cat wants out, let him out. If he wants in, let him in. If he walks through the wall, don’t sweat it, he’s too young to know any better. Oh, and that door over there is the Door into Summer.

97 thoughts on “AtH FAQ and BBQ 2.0 – Compiled by TXRed

      1. Well Sarah, some of us get the posts via email and don’t always visit here to see the header. [Smile]

  1. to Astaru and other forms

    Astaru? Is that a fertility goddess for kangaroos? Maybe Dave or CuteLilDrow could check that for us….

  2. I’m sure Asatru is what was intended.

    It was intended as a joke: Astaru = Astarte for kangaroos. I figured we’d need a native Aussie (or a resident) to tell us if that was a thing. 😉

      1. Since ‘roos run everywhere, if figures they’d be tough; people used to say if a ham was tough it must have been the foot the hog scratched with.

          1. I had roo meatballs with dinner tonite. Got them 3 weeks ago at a Boy Scout function (perk of kitchen staff–leftovers). Also had frog legs. Big hopper and little hopper, right down MY hopper.

  3. Some of us work very hard to get a carp. Or called a baaaaaaad man. Or the dread double threat, getting both for one post.

  4. It’s Uncle Lar, pronounced lair, not Lars. I’m Deutsch not Svenska. And, no, I did not steal the idea from Uncle Timmy.
    Here’s the back story. Many years ago I met a single mother with two small children. We dated for several years. The kids had a dad (sort of kind of) so they started calling me Uncle Larry. We later married and I wound up raising the ungrateful whelps and it’s me they call on father’s day.
    Anyhoo, when this whole interweb thing came about I needed a catchy screen name, and Uncle Larry seemed a bit pretentious so I shortened it to Uncle Lar, or in full form Kindly old Uncle Lar, protector of kittens, puppies, and small children of any species. I’m also really good with sharp knives so it’s my job to dismember that whole suckling pig in the smoker. Did you know that there are a few choice bits that never seem to make it out to the dinner table? Let me know and I’ll save you a taste.

  5. I’m terribly late, I know, but i must ask, re:
    “If you bring beer to share, bring the good stuff.”
    Just how is “the good stuff” defined here? I know it can vary wildly – and sometimes my personal rule of “Does it have a neon sign? Yes? Then get something else.” doesn’t cut it.

    1. I’ve had good luck with “Imperial Stout stored in Bourbon/Cognac Barrels”, but I have to go to special bars for that. This is also the answer to “How can I find a good bar?”

  6. Just read “The Master’s Voice” in the new ANALOG. Set on Mars, on a boy’s 7th birthday, he becomes a citizen, hears a recording of the Master’s voice, and at night his dad takes him topside to see the stars, points out Earth, recites a poem. Boy asks why they call it green when clearly Earth is blue. Confirms my suspicio that RAH is “The Master”.

    1. Good read, wasn’t it? 🙂 I’d almost given up on Analog – this year it has been thin.

      I need to pull out my copy of Rolling Stones and see if Dad’s name was mentioned. ((Don’t tell me wrong universe, I’ve met Gay Deceiver, I know that such things can be corrected with a small step to the side.))

      1. I still haven’t made it through the last issue I bought at a bookstore 4 months ago. Subscribed to it for over 2 decades… and one day realized I wasn;’t reading enbough of each issue to make it worthwhile.

  7. I saw “The Martian” last night at our local 2nd-run theater. Found it very Heinleinian in that “well, DAMN, this is a setback; now, what can I do to fix it” and our hero proceeds to inventory his resources and put them to use.

  8. I’m afraid I don’t recall reading any of your works but I want to now simply because of your definitions for SJW and BBQ. It turns out I have “Darkship Thieves” from one of my Baen Bundles so will insert that on the reading stack as my very next book — unless someone thinks there’s a better example I should start with. I tend to like SF from the likes of RAH, Asimov, Poul Anderson, Sturgeon, Pournelle, Ringo, and Weber or fantasy from the likes of JRRT (of course!) or Asprin although I enjoyed Janet Morris’ “Hell” contributing world anthologies and the first 15 or so Xanth books.

      1. Thanks, finished it the other day. Good read. The protaganist reminded somewhat of Podkayne (apart from the enhanced abilities). My electronic library says I have at least one other title by you so I’ll have to push that further up the queue …

          1. Turns out it’s Draw One in the Dark but I have quite a few other books in the queue. Looking forward to it though as I see it’s one of the ones based here in Colorado.

  9. Turns out it’s Draw One in the Dark. Looking forward to it as it’s one of the ones based here in Colorado but I have quite a few others in the queue …

      1. Mmmm … Denver? I’ll accept the mental imagery from your book. I try not to go within 10 miles of Denver … 😉

  10. I was fortunate to have grown up on RAH when he was still among us, Asimov, Omni Magazine, Niven/Pournelle (“Think of it as evolution on action” is a common epithet hurled at the TV in our home), and I am very happy to find “new-to-me” authors in the same vein. Baen has been a godsend with the demise of the local indie bookstores, and my big complaint is “so much to read, so little time”. Read “Draw One in the Dark” in the Free Library, and just bought “Darkship Thieves”, with the hope to get to it after I get done with the annual “Render unto Caesar” ordeal. Thank you for making a helluva lot of sense in your essays!

  11. I still haven’t figured out how you get “Skippy” out of “Specialist Schwarz.”

    I have done a number of things that Skippy isn’t allowed to do any more. But then I was in the Air Force, not the Army.

    1. Nicknames come from different, yea, even (or especially) from ODD sources, Something he did, or someone thought he did, or misinterpreted (perhaps deliberately) what he did, or was done to. I have a string of descriptions behind my name, which I have carefully concealed in a mayonnaise jar buried where I, and I alone, know the location of.

  12. You might wish to add “.45 vs. 9mm” and “5.56 vs. 7.62” to your no discuss under the theology rule.

  13. I followed the trail from a tweet to this blog and thought I’d leave a quick note. Love the positive and snarky attitude! I also grew up reading Heinlein, Asimov and any other hard SciFi author’s book/magazine I could find. I love and I write fun and funny SciFi adventures. I have a writers blog and 6 books to date. I’m definitely a newbie, still trying to get better with every story. It looks like your ‘Darkship Thieves’ is a book I have to pick up! Good to meet you.
    I’ve been writing on the side since I published ‘Genome the novel’ in 2005. Now that I’m retired I’m having a ball concentration on my writing and talking to other writers.
    Best of luck!

    1. Glad you found it. There have been links here from my Facebook posts before- and we’re Facebook friends. Not with my screen name…

  14. Would love to read more Daring Finds Mysteries. My sister and I adore E. He reminds us not only of our kids but my grandson. I can just imagine Dyse and Cas with a future daughter named Cassie and twin boys Nicky and Benny. maybe continue the story with a Victorian dressed mystery because of the clothing rental for the wedding? Cosies are really big now. Just wanted you to know we enjoyed your series.

  15. “Do not conflate race or gender with culture, for that way lies banning.”

    I have to say that I would prefer to have “gender” changed to “sex.” It needs to be reaffirmed that “sex” has a proper and necessary use to identify a biologically determinate trait; talking about “gender” seems to concede the preferred usage of people who believe that identity is entirely subjective.

    1. Sure, me too. The main reason I didn’t use it, here?
      Some of the guys have awful senses of humor. “Conflating sex?” With this crowd. That would be enough for a certain Wallaby to derail comments for THREE days. Minimum.

  16. Ah ha! I have discovered that Skippy apparently went to work for Larry Correia in his Monster Hunter world.

    An orc. His name in his native tongue is “Skull Crushing Battle Hand of Fury”. He is the pilot of the Hind helicopter owned by MHI. He is a huge fan of Cabbage Point Killing Machine, the heavy metal band of Owen’s brother, Mosh.

  17. I, too, was raised on my father’s RAH collection. It makes your “home” here feel very comfy!
    I’ve been reading your books for years, Ma’am, and keep meaning to say hello. When I pop into your blog here I always run the risk of loosing hours out of my day because I can’t resist reading all of the comments after a post. Your commenters are witty, astute, erudite, hysterically funny… It always gives me so much to think about.

    Thank you for writing and thank you for keeping the light lit in the window,

    “Shared pain is lessened; shared joy, increased — thus do we refute entropy.” – Callahan’s Law

  18. I read through this page…..again. And now I weep for joy. Am I home? Not yet, but close.

    Oh, and I have modified my “name” a bit, for “reasons”. Hope this isn’t treading into the No Politics too much.

    *I edited your name to remove SAH. If you post with SAH on your name again, you’ll be banned, permanently. The reason should be absurdly obvious.
    There is no ban on politics here. -SAH*

  19. Do you ever accept speaking engagements, and if so do you have an agent or other contact information for such?

    1. Er…
      Normally — she says thinking of how many times co-panelists try to wrestle the microphone from me, when (metaphorically speaking) turn the Heinlein picture to the wall and speak the truth without varnish — people try to get me to stop talking 😉
      Okay, the serious answer: I’d be open to it, if it were somewhere I could get to without much fuss. (I have a vague idea I’ve had a handful of these, but not in the last three years, and not enough to leave an impression. And I was writing novels, anyway) And these days I don’t have an agent for anything.

    1. Will you? WHY?
      I won the Prometheus award and the Dragon Award.
      Are you another of those very smart fools sent here by idiots? That’s the only reason you’d have to ponder it, instead of looking it up.

      1. Sarah, I think he’s being sarcastic, because winning and wining are associated but not the same.

        There’s usually a bottle of Champagne in victory lane…

  20. easy there cowgirl . I’m definitely a fan of your writing and content.

    being a wining author or award wining or an award wining author had me thinking about the possibilities of a similar career choice.

    if my post was offensive … feel free to delete it. appreciate what you do.

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