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  1. What is RGP?
  2. How to place information?
  3. How to send a text or image file?
  4. How to send a review?
  5. Where to get necessary software?

  1. What is RGP?


           Welcome to Rede Global Paraliteraria (RGP). RGP is a global net-based organization dedicated to finding, creating, editing, sharing, and archiving information about paraliteratures in languages other than English.

           We in RGP tend toward a particular interest in a genre known as "fantascienza," "fantastyka" and "ciencia ficcion." (We will refer to this genre by the arbitrary acronym "SF". )

           It is our basic premise that the advent of the Internet has changed the nature of literature. As net-active paraliterateurs, we should respond effectively to this new reality. The price of moving words on a screen has collapsed. The speed of transmission has intensified. Censorship has largely collapsed, making the movement of text across political boundaries much easier than ever before. Even the commercial strictures of copyright and intellectual property seem shaky. The only major barrier that hasn't collapsed is the language barrier. The language barrier is our primary interest in RGP.

           English has become the default net.language. The huge Anglophone market for fiction and the extreme sophistication of Anglophone publishing and distribution have changed the paraliterary game for non-Anglophone writers and publishers. A distinct possibility exists that the American military-entertainment complex will simply crush everything in its path.

           The commercial structures of Anglophone "science fiction" are direly prejudiced against the planet's majority populations. Since most people on Earth don't write in English, this dominance of English perversely shrinks the global talent pool. We find this outcome unacceptable, so we are working to change it.

           The dominance of English and its Internet has other interesting aspects, however. It means that the rest of us have a new advantage. We now have a cheap and dependable means to talk to one another. Our purpose in RGP is to exploit the energy and creativity of people who love and write and publish fantastic paraliterature, but who find themselves excluded by contemporary commercial publishing and distribution structures.

           It is not the purpose of RGP to promulgate any particular literary or political ideology. On the contrary, we are particularly interested in radically expanding the variety of points of view.

           Beginning, therefore in January 1998, we are engaging in a long-term, net-based project to find, generate and distribute paraliterary information, free of charge, around the world. We urge you to become an active contributor to RGP and help yourself by helping us.

           These are our areas of interest.

           1. Bibliographies and biographies of prominent non-Anglophone SF writers. We would like to establish a global canon of SF writers in languages other than English whose work has global cultural importance.

           2. Works in the public domain which might be translated and published worldwide with a minimum of economic overhead. RGP is a strictly noncommercial enterprise. Though we abhor piracy, we are not engaged in the defense of copyright and intellectual property. If your work is too commercially valuable to be read and freely copied by RGP members worldwide, please don't send it to our mailing list. We are giving away everything that we transmit, in the hopes that people worldwide will freely copy it, translate it, distribute it, and archive it. We will not be "publishing" any fiction or poetry on the RGP mailing list.

           3. Practical guides to publishing and distribution in non-Anglophone languages. We would like to learn by one another's successes and mistakes.

           4. A guide to net-connected SF translators, worldwide. Tools and resources for translators. Computer-assisted translation -- myths and realities.

           5. Non-Anglophone publications interested in buying and selling non-Anglophone SF. Finns selling Finnish SF to Finns, while laudable, does not strike us as very interesting. Finns selling Finnish SF to Czechs and Mexicans is much more the end we have in mind. All commercial announcements and calls will be distributed in another list: rgppro@dks.com.br -- subscribers to rgp will get authomatic access to it.

           6. Paraliterary manifestos and not-for-profit, freely distributable, critical material on non-Anglophone paraliteratures. Histories of paraliterary movements in non-Anglophone countries. Genre and category structures in non-Anglophone literatures. Useful critical terms in non-Anglophone languages (such as all known synonyms for "SF"). Theoretical work. Social and technical impacts of networks on languages.

           7. Non-Anglophone SF websites, mailing lists, and relevant archives. With luck we will find that someone else on the Internet is already doing our work for us.

           RGP is not a "discussion group" or a "newsgroup." It is a rigidly edited mailing list dedicated to putting useful material into the hands of serious-minded professionals. The current editor is Roberto de Sousa Causo of Sao Paolo, Brazil (roberto.causo@dks.com.br). Submissions to the list should be sent to rgp@dks.com.br. All editorial decisions are final and without appeal. Submisssions may be edited severely in the interests of time and bandwidth. Traffic on this list will be light.

           If you write for us, don't worry about a shaky command of English. We have volunteers on staff who have an excellent grasp of the English language's impossible grammar and spelling. They will make you sound at least as good as this introduction.

           To join our list, just send an E-Mail message to Rgp. After 120 days you will be ask to renew your subscription. A simple reply to that message should be enough. If you don't want to receive every message when it's written, but rather receive them once a week (as a file attachment), then send a message to the list server with "DIGEST ON" in the subject line.

    Thank you for your attention.
    Rede Global Paraliteraria / Global Paraliterary Net
    Bruce Sterling / Roberto de Sousa Causo

  2. How to place information?

           You can send information about yourself in the form of the usual e-mail message addressed to webmaster, and with the keywords "Information to place" in the "Subject:" field. Information could be mailed in any language. However, due to possible national encoding problems, we suggest you to send an English version, too.

           TRANSLATORS should send their name, country, e-mail (or full address), working languages and the brief information about conditions of accepting texts for translation. Example:

    Smith, John (Canada) English-French; French-English
    mail to: (e-mail or address)
    (text of the brief information)

           MAGAZINE EDITORS, PUBLISHERS AND AGENTS should indicate the name of their magazine, company or agency, e-mail (or full address) and any information they consider necessary. Example:

    Name (Country)
    mail to: e-mail (or full address)
    (text of information)

  3. How to send a text or image file?

           Send your text files in the form of attachments to e-mail message addressed to webmaster, and with the keyword "Text" in the "Subject:" field. The body of the message should contain necessary information described below.

           Since there are dozens of DOS and Windows (and, of course, Mac) text editors (text processors), and most of them save files in their own format, the problems of compatibility became very important. We suggest the following rules which, as we hope, will eliminate most of them.

           ENGLISH texts should be converted to the universal "text only" format. To do it, open a text file in your text processor, and click (File -- Save As -- text only) in order to receive a file with .txt extension. When you'll give this file new name, we strongly recommend NOT to use long Windows file names, and to stick to "8.3" file name format (i.e. file name up to 8 characters with "txt" extension). Why? You'll soon understand.

           Warning: you'll lose all italics, bold, etc. characters after converting your file into "text only" format. You must previously use another method to indicate _bold or italics_ words or paragraphs. Remember an ancient times when you used a typewriter.

           Such "text only" files could be opened in any DOS or Windows text processor without any problems. But only if they are in English.

           NON-ENGLISH texts are harder nut to crack. We can't guarantee that after saving as "text only" such a file could be opened and read in the other text processor. Since files in MS WinWord 6 format could be opened in any other version of WinWord, and Windows 3.x or Windows-95 (or later) are the most common pieces of software worldwide, we ask you to send non-English texts in WinWord 6 format. Such files will be received, and later could be downloaded "as is" -- in an assumption that the person willing to read a text, say, in Spanish, already have all necessary software in his PC. And, again, use "8.3" file name format, too.

           What to do if you work in Word 7 or higher? Try to save a file as "text only" and then to open it in Windows-95 standard editor WordPad. If it looks OK on the screen, then you could save it using "Word 6 format" option from "File -- Save As -- File format" menu.

           In order to save your web time and our disk space, we recommend you to attach files compressed with the archieving software -- such as PKZIP or ARJ. As DOS software, they don't support long file names. And beware: short English stories will be stored (and could be downloaded) in text format, but novels and Word 6 files will be stored in compressed format. See INFO, question #5 for additional information.

           IMAGE FILES should be mailed as attachments to e-mail message. We strongly recommend to send them in .jpg or .gif formats, since these formats are standard ones for any web-brouser. Place also necessary information in the body of the message.

           Here is an example of e-mail message with the attached text and image files (Note: 10Kw means 10 thousand words):

    Subject: Text; image
    An attached file texts.zip include the following texts by John Smith (Canada):
    1. French title (English translation of the title) (15Kw, Word 6)
    2. French title 2 (English translation of the title) (12Kw, Word 6)
    3. English title 1 (18Kw, txt)
    4. French version of (English title 1), translated by [Name] (18Kw, Word 6)
    5. English title 2 (novel, sample chapter) (30Kw, txt)
    6. Cover of [Title] by [Name] (85K, cover.jpg)
    7. English title 3 (novel, synopsis) (5Kw, txt)
    8. An interview with [Name] by [Name] from [Sourse] (20Kw, txt)
    I have the following suggestions for placement of these files: ........
    (or any other information you think necessary)

           Note: if you an author, and send your texts for the first time, please add your full name and address, e-mail, phone number, and brief information about yourself in a free form. This information will be placed on the top of your personal page. However, it is to you to decide what personal information you wish to reveal. For example, you may name your name and e-mail only. Your privacy is in your hands.

  4. How to send a review?

           You can send a REVIEW in the form of the usual e-mail message addressed to webmaster, and with the keyword "Review" in the "Subject:" field. Information could be mailed in any language. However, due to possible national encoding problems, we suggest you to send an English version, too.In the body of the message please indicate:

    Review on (Story title) by (Author's name)
    (text of the review - 1000 words maximum)
    Your signature and e-mail

  5. Where to get necessary software?

           PKZIP (file compressing utility) and PKUNZIP (file uncompressing utility), as well as ARJ are free for personal use. You can download them here.

           Although there exist a lot of similar Windows utilities, such as WinZip, and they support long file names, we can't guarantee that you have the same or compatible version of such a software as we are. Therefore we strongly recommend you to download here the software that will guarantee such a compatibility. These utilities have a built-in "help", you only need to run any of them without parameters to see it on your dispay.

           Since these are DOS utilities, they should be run in DOS-session. I'll not be surprised to know that some of you are innocent victims of Bill Gates, and never in you life have worked in DOS, and are bound to use moronic Windows built-in so-called "File manager". I can assure you that there is no more simple, handy, user-friendly DOS-shell software to work with files than Norton Commander. You don't have it? Then rush and buy it, or ask your friend to install you a copy, or download here a copy of NC-similar shareware. Then install it, and enjoy!

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