Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Allergy free Chinese chicken with black bean sauce recipe


Ingredients
Chicken coating
  • 1 double breast chicken, cut into 1-2cm sliced
  • 2 tsps cornflour
  • 1 tsp rice wine or dry sherry
  • 2 tsps allergy free soy sauce replacer
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp olive oil
Black bean mixture
Stock and seasoning
  • ⅓ cup chicken stock made of 1 Massel Salt Reduced Ultracube
  • 1 tbsp rice wine or dry sherry
  • ¼ tsp salt
To cook
  • 2 tbsps olive oil for cooking
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • ¼-½ tsp chilli flakes or powder, to taste
  • 1 carrot, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
  • ½ green capsicum, sliced
  • 1 shallot, finely shredded

Method
  • In a medium bowl, combine the chicken, cornflour, 1 teaspoon of the rice wine, soy sauce replacer, ½ teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of the oil.
  • Stir to combine.
  • In a small bowl, mash the black beans with the garlic, ginger, and remaining soy sauce replacer.
  • In another small bowl, combine the stock and remaining 1 tablespoon of rice wine.
  • Set aside.
  • Heat a large wok over a high heat until hot.
  • Swirl in the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil and add the red onion and chilli.
  • Use a spatula to stir-fry for 30 seconds or until the onions soften.
  • Push the onion to the sides of the wok.
  • Carefully add the coated chicken and spread it in one even layer in the wok.
  • Cook for 1 minute without stirring, letting the chicken begin to sear.
  • Stir-fry for 1 minute or until the chicken is lightly browned but not cooked through.
  • Add the carrots, capsicum and black bean mixture.
  • Stir-fry 30 seconds or until fragrant. 
  • Swirl the stock mixture into the wok and sprinkle over the remaining ¼ teaspoon of salt.
  • Stir-fry 1 to 2 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.
  • Stir in the shredded scallion.
  • Serve with rice.

On judging good books and terrible books and the writing of either


There are good books, great books, entertaining books, life changing books, enlightening books, exciting books, world exploring books, whispering books, shocking books, horrifying books, repellent books and much more. All of them a good books. They're books to be read and to learn from. And then there are terrible books in which there is nothing but emptiness behind the words.

The question is: How can you tell them apart? Followed, of course, by these questions: What is worth printing or reading? How do we choose what to print and read? Are there many left unprinted that are worth reading? Are we able to find all the books worth our time or are there some rotting away in attics or lost to mass publication, distribution and mulching?

There is much to be said on the questions that follow and usually along the lines of: we aren't printing everything that's worthwhile, we're printing and reading a lot of trash, there are there so few people calling the shots on what becomes available to read, there are tonnes of books left unprinted that are interesting to read... so on and so forth. Essays could and have been written on many of these topics, addressing the pros and cons of publishing, of writing and or reading.

But the question for today is: How can you tell a terrible book full of emptiness from a good book, whatever its particular genre or style or 'flavour', as it were? It is a good question to answer given that I'm currently in the book recommendation business, if not reviewing. It is also one to ponder while reading manuscripts and assessing them for an agent. And even when writing a book of my own. Certainly, just because I put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard it doesn't mean that my work isn't full of emptiness. And how do I explain that a light-hearted piece isn't light for emptiness? The question does echo through so much. It is there when I buy books, when I choose what to read next. It is there when I scan mangas, when I look at movie covers on a lonely evening. It is there when faced with a library's worth of books and I stand about wondering where to start or if I shouldn't at all because there's something better elsewhere. It is there when faced with the choices educators hand my way and I wonder why I'm reading this old thing over again and not something else. It is even there when I grasp onto a book so I can walk down the street without thinking I've forgotten my mind or when I put the current selection close on the bedside table so I can sleep well at night. The question bears thought, I believe, as I have often been called upon to justify my thoughts, actions, choices, habits, attachments, writing style, imaginary worlds, genre choices, intellectual pursuits and judgments.



To me the answer is both fairly simple and deeply complicated, as all good things tend to be. The short and sweet answer reads like a greeting card: A good book makes you think and dwell within the covers as long as possible. Something of this sort. Or maybe an answer along the lines of ripples in the mind, echoes of thought and feeling, lingering attachments to what was found within the covers or even a life-changing work.

But the vague greeting card answers don't help much if you want to actually create a work that could be said to be a darn good book. Just how do you make people dwell on what's within the covers or feel any sort of mind-altering impact? Just how literary and serious must a writer be to create such pieces of great worth? Or better yet, is there a formula you can show me on how to do all of the above? What the above leaves the creative is a mass of confusion, nail-biting paranoia and uncertainty. It leaves the creative wondering if their work is justifiable or even worthy enough to be read at all? Maybe if all the spelling and grammar is correct then it could be read by at least someone, right?

Greeting card evaluations are useless. You can't provide a manuscript assessment with any of them. You can't answer why you chose one book over another with them. You can't justify your attachments either. No, you must produce more in-depth analysis and justify yourself clearly. Otherwise, one book is as good as another because every book reflects at least a little of the light that is life and if we're reading for those reflections then they are everywhere and in every book written by a human. And even by those written by non-humans, if ever we come across such a thing (I'd love to see such a day but that's just my mind off wandering again).

The longer and more complicated answer to the question of what is the difference between a terrible book and a good one is something you'll trip over nearly every time you ask the question "Why?" just after asking the question "What's your favourite book?". To each his or her own, really, as it depends on what is reflected, whether the reader sees it or not, whether it is a perfect or distorted reflection of their life experiences and whether the reflection is at all recognisable or understandable. This means that there's no perfect or best book ever written, just ones the majority find intriguing, comforting, illuminating, disturbing and life-altering and ones the majority just don't get.

"William Shakespeare!", you're thinking, because he addressed so much of what it is to be human. But then, so do many others in their dramas. "Chaucer!" for his ability to address our baser natures and reveal us for what we are. But then, there are thousands of lesser know writers about who constantly point out just how gritty, polluted and base humanity is - take Chuck Palahniuk for an example of a better known one. Chuck or Chaucer? Which works are better? Don't think on mass popularity or intellectual pursuits. Don't consider how many sold or lasting through centuries. Just the works. Side by side. Which are the best sets of work? There are likely many of you saying "Well Chaucer, obviously" while the others are muttering "But I've only read Chuck's and his works are more relevant to today". Between these two major players you are stuck in a deadlock. But if I tried to pitch my own work or a fellow unpublished writer's work into the mix against either or both (mine isn't a gritty-mode book but this is just for argument's sake so whatever) and asked the same question I believe the answer would be flat our Chaucer or Chuck, depending on which I or we are being judged against. Yet this answer could well be wrong.

All this is on how we value a book, how we perceive it due to culture and fashion. But perceived value and fashion doesn't actually make a book good. If it did we'd be lauding Twilight and 50 Shades of Grey rather than trashing them so thoroughly (after reading them or sometimes only after hearing of the content). Which means that such perception and fashionability, based on individual and mass opinion, do not a good book make and so all of those books that are printed and read on mass could well be trash. When working with equations you have to mind the faults. Or at least that's what I learnt while steadily failing math exams during year 9 for not paying attention to such a boring subject (my own perception but certainly not that of Hawking who I happen to admire, like so many others). Making up answers and saying they're definitely true for everyone just doesn't cut it.



And on that note, to add further complications to this mess of an explanation, there are many out there who love Twilight and 50 Shades of Grey and will hate you for trashing it in front of them, also finding themselves almost forced to justify themselves at which point they become indignant, angry, rebellious, argumentative and possibly violent. The need to justify stems from the feeling that the masses, or at least the person in front of them, has trashed everything about themselves that they saw reflected back at them in those books. Along with trashing their right to an opinion, their right to be heard and their hope to be understood.

Is publication an indication that the book is good and a lack of publication that the book is terrible? The answer to that is a resounding no. You may be thinking, "but I can't remember reading such a terrible book" but I will assume that is because most of the time you've chosen books to read as you've seen that there could be something in there for you. The experience is quite different when you're reading without that choice, just reading what's been plunked in front of you. At least you might remember experiencing something like this at school. Even then though, the books given to you were likely ones capable of reflecting a lot of life to a lot of people and so they were likely good ones, whether you paid them any attention or not.

What a mess...

So. I'd have to say that in short you're likely to write a good book as long as you put some of yourself in it. And you're likely to find a book good as long as you put in the effort to see something in it.

If you blinker yourself too much you won't see anything and all books will be terribly empty. Why? Because you are. If you remove the blinkers, or never set them in place (unlikely), then you are free to experience anything and see the reflections everywhere. And you become full  enough to possibly, one day, be called wise.

If you fail to writing your thoughts, experiences, emotions, actions and sensations down then no-one can see any of it within your book. Being literary isn't required. Being serious isn't required. Slugging people over the head with a long fictional argument on a particular subject and ending it with a moral or definitive answer isn't required. Being human and conveying your humanity is. Fill the pages with it however you like, in whatever style you like and using characters born of yourself. Readers will see you and see themselves and your work will be good.

The equation here isn't so faulty. A terrible book is one written by a blinkered and empty person. There's no substance, no life, within or behind the words. No meaning behind the actions of characters. No resounding cause and effect within the world written. This lack is easily felt, whether a book has been published and approved of or not, and it is because of this that the book quickly fades away.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Allergy free dark chocolate magic topping recipe


Ingredients
  • 1¼ cups Lindt 70% dark chocolate, broken into pieces
  • ½ cup solid coconut oil


Method
  • Melt the chocolate and coconut oil in the microwave about 1 minute.
  • Allow the mixture to sit a few minutes to allow the heat of the oil to melt the chocolate.
  • Stir until smooth.
  • If there are any chocolate chunks left then an extra 30 seconds in the microwave should melt them.
  • The mixture should be runny.
  • Pour the mixture into a glass bottle.
  • Store in the refrigerator.
  • To serve, heat the glass bottle with the cap open or off (if metal) in the microwave for 30 seconds until liquid.
  • Stir and heat for another 30 seconds if not liquid yet.
  • Once ready, pour the magic topping over allergy free goat's milk ice cream and wait a few seconds.
video

Shaky cam but you get the idea.


Notes
  • You can use any chocolate you can eat or even use homemade chocolate (see various recipes).
  • There are various allergy free goat's milk ice cream recipes available.
  • Candy oils can be used instead of essences but these are harder to find.
  • Use a sanitised bottle. To sanitise, half fill the bottle with water and boil it for 6 minutes in the microwave.

Rosy's scrawled manga recommendation: Break Blade by Yoshinaga Yunosuke

Break Blade
Yoshinaga Yunosuke

Blurb

From Manga Abyss:
Which to choose, the country or my friend--!? The "Continent of Cruzon", a world where people are born with magic. Lygatto, one of the rare people "without magic" in this world, is getting swallowed up in the whirlpool of a massive war. With Lygatto as the core, four close friends are connected by cruel fate in a spectacular war tale!!!
In the continent of Cruzon, an impending war between the Kingdom of Krishna and the nation of Athens is brimming. The people of this land are able to wield the crystals from the ground for whatever purpose they desire. Yet one person, Lygatto Arrow, is not. He is an "un-sorcerer", a person unable to wield the crystals. But this characteristic will enable him to pilot an ancient mecha, one strong enough to put up a fight against the invading army of Athens.

From Baka-Updates:
Rygart Arrow is the only one in his world who lacks the inherent ability to power up quartz, the energy source that makes all of the machines run. Nevertheless, he's pretty well connected. The King and Queen of his country of Krisna happen to be old college friends. But so is Zess, the guy who is leading the army of a neighboring kingdom in an attack on Krisna.
How did it comes to this? There's little time to ponder the implications as an army in giant, mechanized battle suits attacks. Arrow just feels like he's in the way - until he comes across a powerful, ancient mech that no one has yet to be able to figure out how to run. But his natural affinity for the suit's operating mechanism may just turn Arrow into the most important player of all.


Alternate names
ブレイクブレイド
破刃之剑
Bureiku Bureido
Broken Blade
Espada Rota
Espada Quebrada
Bruten Klinga
Сломанный меч
Pedang Butut

Status
Ongoing

Manga reader sites (free)
Manga Fox, Manga Reader, Manga Anime

Rosy's scrawlings on Break Blade
Break Blade seems at first like its portrayal of war and heroism will be fairly fantastical, following the lines of a young man coming good, defeating foes and winning the day. Break Blade isn't like that at all though. There's a realism to the way war progresses, the situations that force people to make difficult decisions, the desperation, the cruelty and the useless casualties. There's also a fairly believable portrayal of the horrific glee some feel in dividing up a country's wealth, subjugating people, manipulating others into becoming cannon fodder for a cause they're unaware of and many other things besides. Even the mentally ill and the psychotic are given their roles within the war of Break Blade. And for all this, Break Blade is worth reading as it is worth knowing just how horrible people can be and how bitter heroism can be.
The story follows Lygatto and his friends, some divided by politics, as they try to survive and stand for what they believe in. Their beliefs and causes aren't grandiose of for the greater good but rather for the survival of themselves and their friends, loves and family. The reasons they fight are some of the most common aside from patriotism when it comes to real wars and only by dumb luck and bloody mistakes do they all manage to make it so far, even if the friendships are fracturing.
Aside from this realism there are mechanoids or golems to enjoy, castles, a regency system or two, and a simply magic system based on controlling quartz energies. The magic is mostly used for guns, communications and lighting etc. and there's no sign of black magic or spell slinging at all, something that likely wouldn't work within the tech-based war story.
The art of Break Blade is stark, tending to be light, which seems unusual for a war story until you see the desert/arid landscape of Lygatto's country Krishna. The starkness and light of the illustrations force you to see that there's little romance - dark or otherwise - in the war, even with the interesting weaponry to look at. While the style isn't blast-em-away original the subject matter of the artwork makes the manga pleasing to the eye. The flow is smooth and close ups on battle scenes and landscape views are both created with equal skill.
Break Blade, while a pleasure to read is also a little painful. But no good war story is a calm one. You might not come away happy but you will come away feeling more cynical and in touch with reality, which, as far as I'm concern, is a good thing to hang on to.

I'd recommend this manga to: anyone who likes alternate world fantasy, war stories and historical fantasy.

Notes on manga reader sites
The quality of manga readers can vary. The uploads are often done cheaply or as a serious hobby by a collective. Be aware that sometimes licence hasn't been given but the sites noted above, Manga Fox in particular, are extremely careful about adding and pulling mangas according to license agreements. So you shouldn't have to worry too much about the material being pirated. There are also translated works and non-translated. Amongst the translated works you will find that the quality of translation may vary according to the skills of the translators. Usually the works are perfectly readable anyway, with only a few added or dropped words or a word in the incorrect tense or with/out plurals. But sometimes the text becomes gobbledygook. In which case, either seek another version or give up and buy an official copy once a printed translation comes out. The other issue of note is you may need to expand the screen to read the text easily as sometimes the scans are minimised a little.
I find that if a page doesn't download properly or some other issue occurs (too slow or someone ordered the pages incorrectly etc.) with one reader then skipping across to another reader and picking up where I was is quite easy and rarely annoying.
Otherwise, enjoy and watch out you don't get too addicted you forget about the necessary things in life.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Allergy free orange vinaigrette recipe


Ingredients
  • 4 tbsps orange juice
  • 2 tbsps balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • Pinch of onion powder
  • Pinch or garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp white wine
  • 2 tsps honey
  • Pinch of cracked black pepper

Method
  • In a small jar with a tight-fitting lid, combine the orange juice, vinegar, mustard powder, onion powder, garlic powder, white wine, honey and pepper.
  • Cover and shake well until combined.
  • To store, refrigerate for up to a week.
  • Shake well before serving.

Best for
  • Plain salads, mixed fruit and vegetable salads, chicken salads.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Rosy's scrawled book recommendation: Starship Titanic by Douglas Adams and Terry Jones

Starship Titanic
Terry Jones and Douglas Adams

Blurb

Arguably the greatest collaboration in the whole history of comedy!
Bestselling author Douglas Adams wrote the storyline based on his CD-ROM game of the same name (as this novel, not as him, obviously).
Terry Jones of Monty Python wrote the book. In the nude! Parents be warned! Most of the words in this book were written by a naked man!
So. You want to argue with that? All right, we give in.
Starship Titanic is the greatest, most fabulous, most technologically advanced interstellar cruise line ever built. It is like a cross between the Queen Mary, the Chrysler Building, Tutankhamen's tomb, and Venice. Furthermore, it cannot possibly go wrong...
Sadly, however, seconds after its launch it undergoes SMEF, or Spontaneous Massive Existence Failure. And disappears.
Except, everything's got to be somewhere.
Coming home that night, on a little known planet called Earth, Dan and Lucy Gibson find something very large and very, very shiny sticking into their house...


Publisher
Ballantine Books

ISBN
9780345368430

Rosy's scrawlings on Starship Titanic
Years ago, back when I was a late teen I bought a copy of this book and read it. I then lost it somehow, bought a new one and reread it. Then proceeded to lose that copy as well. So I bought it a third time only to find the second copy again. Now, with two copies available to read and one untouched, I decided to give it another whirl, this time breaking in the new copy. There are few books that have gone though this type of cycle on my shelves and it is a sign of a loved book, as important a sign as my keeping a book in perfect nick.
This book is a quick blast, a lot of fun and utterly ridiculous from beginning to end. That said, under all the creativity, tangents and silliness there are a few little grains of truth. Just a few scattered about for the more perceptive of readers. Mostly though, there are healthy doses of invented words, strange situations, well-known and wearing travel issues writ anew and dramatic events.

The characters within Starship Titanic are likable in some ways and thoroughly awful in others. Their faults and flaws are written large while their nicer or more acceptable traits require some searching for. They are there though. I have to say, without giving away anything, that I like the way the relationships were sorted out. The plot is quick paced once the starship is launched and although not completely original with regards to Douglas Adams it is rather unusual in the scheme of all other science fiction. To top it off there's a lot of laughs and silly ideas to run with.

There is one thing that needs to be said though. Nearly everyone who's read and liked The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy will likely judge this book against it. By doing so, some will love Starship Titanic and others will find it disappointing. To be perfectly honest though, you should probably avoid judging it against Hitchhikers and rather see it as a short aside. There are several similar elements to it and some rather obvious ones in the plotting. One of the girls takes with an alien and leaves her mostly normal and a little timid boyfriend behind. There's a revolutionary spaceship that disappears upon its launch, although this time it isn't stolen. There's also robots with personalities and instead of sighing doors there's talking lampshades and lifts going on about surviving a war.
What this means is that some of the elements have come from Douglas Adams' mind, where such ideas had been rattling about due to Hitchhikers. This is also perfectly allowable as we are talking stories within the same universe: the Hitchhiker style universe. Without similar elements it wouldn't be Hitchhikers related at all, not even with regards to the universe (as opposed to the Whoniverse or the Trekiverse). Otherwise, Terry Jones leaves his mark on the writing style, even though it has been worked to fit well with Douglas Adams' Starship Titanic game plot. The writing style isn't as highbrow as some of Terry Jones' other comedy works (sounds funny to say so but he does have a way with words and a lot of subtlety when writing works all his own) but there's quite a lot of his wit and quirky word usage to be enjoyed. This is a collaboration and one that worked extremely well.

I'd recommend this book to: anyone who like either of the author/comedian's works, fans of The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy, Dr Who fans and those who like science-fiction/fantasy comedy. Also, those who just like sentences written in interesting ways, odd words and the unexpected.

Allergy free choc dipped coconut biscuits recipe


Ingredients
Biscuits
  • 1¼ cup Orgran self-raising flour
  • 1 cup coconut
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tsps Orgran No Egg whisked with 60mls water until thick
  • ½ cup Nuttlex, melted
Choc dip
  • 100g Lindt 70% dark chocolate, broken into bits
  • 1 tbsp Nuttlex



Method
Biscuits
  • Mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl.
  • Shape tablespoons of mixture into balls.
  • Press them onto a grease and aluminium foil lined baking tray and shape them if necessary.
  • Bake at 180°C for 12-15 minutes.
  • Allow the biscuits to cool on the tray for 5 minutes and then carefully remove them to a wire rack.
  • Allow the biscuits to cool completely.
Choc Dip
  • Reline the baking tray with fresh aluminium foil.
  • Melt the chocolate and Nuttlex together in a heatproof bowl suspended over a saucepan or slightly simmering water.
  • Once the chocolate has melted completely dip the bottom of each biscuit into the chocolate using 2 forks.
  • Transfer to the baking tray and allow the chocolate to cool and set.y

Great drug user and drug addicted characters in fiction

Dr Henry Jekyll/Edward Hyde from Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes 

Raoul Duke and Dr Gonzo from Hunter S Thompson's Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas: A Savage Journey to the Heart of the American Dream

Gregory House from House

Patsy Stone from Absolutely Fabulous

Doug Wilson from Weeds

Walter Bishop from Fringe

Bob Arctor/Agent Fred from A Scanner Darkly by Philip K Dick

Chev Chelios from Crank

Scooby Doo and Shaggy from Scooby Doo

Tony Montana from Scarface

Renton, Sickboy, Spud, Begbie from Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh

Frankie Machine from The Man With The Golden Arm by Nelson Algren

Harry, Marion, Tyrone and Sara from Hubert Selby Jr's Requiem for a Dream

Bob Hughes from Drugstore Cowboy

William Lee from Naked Lunch by William S. Burroughs

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Female pirates: mythological, fictional and real

A little while ago I ran across an article on sexism which just happened to reference pirates as a good example of sexism at play: by our perceptions of pirates as male and our reinforcement of this perception by creating stories centring on male pirates. Apparently the thought of pirates being female, pirate captains in particular, is a little hard to swallow. Well, this was not exactly a shock to me but I still hummed in disappointment over one girl's reaction to the idea of female pirates, which was to say that "everyone knows the best pirates are boys". Obviously, she didn't know enough about female pirates and she had also become blinkered by seeing mainly the male pirates having the stage when it comes to action and leadership. Now, I'm not going to weigh in on the sexism debate, at least not where pirates are concerned, as even in history the number of female pirates and pirate captains were less than those of males. What I will weigh in on is the spreading of information on female pirates so that you at least know of one of two interesting ones when confronted by the female pirate issue.

So here's a few female pirates, fictional and real, you might like and/or fear. There are definitely quite a few I wouldn't have wanted to cross...


The Chinese female pirate Ch’iao K’uo Füü Jëën from 600 B.C. who may be mythical.

Queen Teuta of Illyria who lived from 232 B.C. to 228 B.C. near the Adriatic Sea.

The Norwegian Rusila may or may not be fictional but is said to have fought her brother for the thrones of Denmark and Norway. She is also possible part of or the origin of the Ingean Ruadh or Red Maid from Irish folklore. Rusila also had a sisterStikla, who became a pirate to escape being married.

Princess Sela, who was the sister of the king of Norway, Koller, in c. 420 A.D., was apparently a skilled and experience warrior pirate. She fought to stop her brother Thrond from gaining the throne. She was eventually killed by the mann who could have been King of Jutland, Horwendil, but gave up the position in order to become a pirate. A man who'd been attacked by Koller only to see Koller dead.

The Norwegian pirate Alvid who lead many male and female pirates.

The Norwegian pirate captains Wigbiorg, Hetha and Wisna who lived in c. 8th century A.D.. Wigbiorg is said to have died in battle while Hetha became the queen of Zealand. Unfortunately for Wisna, she lost a hand in a duel and he career as a pirate is unknown from there.

The Swedish pirate Alfhild from post-850 A.D., sometimes said to live during the 5th century instead, is possibly fictional.

Ladgerda from c. 870 A.D. was apparently the inspiration for Ermintrude in William Shakespeare's Hamlet.

The English pirate Æthelflæd, aka The Lady of the Mercians, lived from 872–918 and was a pirate from 911-918. She was the Eldest daughter of Alfred the Great of England, a military leader of the Anglo-Saxons and commanded her fleets against the Vikings.

The French pirate Jeanne-Louise de Belleville was a pirate from 1343-1356 and was known as the "Lioness of Brittany". The worked to avenge the execution of her husband by attacking only French sea vessels.

The Irish Gráinne Ní Mháille, aka "The Sea Queen of Connaught", lived from 1530-1603. She was the Queen of Umaill, chieftain of the Ó Máille clan and a pirate. She appears in Irish folklore as well as Irish history.

The English pirate The Red Lady Veronica lived from 1500–1534 and was a pirate from 1528 - 1534. She never revealed her true identity and disguised herself as a singer and entertainer so that she was brought onto ships. Once alone she'd remove her disguise to reveal a top and pants, unusual at the time, along with her weapons. Once ready she'd then go kill everyone aboard and steal the ship.

The Morroccan pirate Sayyida al Hurra was a pirate from 1510-1542. She allied with  the Turkish corsair Barbaros of Algiers in order to control the western Mediterranean Sea at the time when Barbaros controlled the eastern Mediterranean Sea. She became Queen at the death of her husband and later married the King of Morocco.

The English pirate Lady Mary Killigrew was a pirate from 1530-1570. She was the daughter of a Suffolk pirate and wife of Sir Henry Killigrew who was also a former pirate. Sir Henry became the Vice-Admiral and was put in charge of fighting piracy by Queen Elizabeth I. While the husband was away Lady Mary took her household staff as ships crew. While Queen Elizabeth may or may not have know of this she was at least annoyed when Lady Mary attacked, took possession and sold a ship owned by the Queen's friend. Through means uncertain she managed to bargain for jail time rather than death. While she did give up piracy she apparently didn't give up being a crook as she proceeded to fence stolen goods from then on in.

The Caribbean pirate Jacquotte Delahaye was a pirate during the 1650s-1660s and was also known as "Back From The Dead Red". She had red hair and return to piracy after faking her death. While faking her death she dressed as a man for several years.

The French pirate Anne Dieu-le-Veut, aka Marie-Anne, was born around 1650 and was a pirate from the 1660s-1704 in the Caribbean and the Mississippi. Her nickname means "God wills it" as apparently anything she wanted she got. She married a pirate who was later killed by Laurens de Graaf. She challenged Laurens de Graaf to a duel but he refused. Somehow she ended up his common-law wife and they ended up pirating together.

The possibly fictional Maria Lindsey was a pirate during the early 1700s, operating on the Canadian east coast.

The Swedish pirate Ingela Gathenhielm lived from 1692-1729 and was a pirate from 1710-1721 operating in the Baltic. She was the wife and pirating partner of Lars Fathenhielm and when Lars died she took full control.

The Irish pirate Anne Bonny lived from 1698-1782 and was a pirate from 1719-1720 operating in the Caribbean. She apparently stabbed a servant woman with a butter knife, left home, married the pirate James Bonny and had an affair with John "Calico Jack" Rackham. She ended up joining Calico Jack's crew. Friends with Mary Read. There are multiple fictional depictions of Anne Bonny.

The English pirate Mary Read, known as Mark Read while disguised as a man, lived c.1690-1721 and was a pirate from 1718-1720. She was a Caribbean pirate after joining the British army as a man, going to sea and fighting the War Of The Spanish Succession. She later married and settled down but once her husband died she returned to pirating in the West Indies. She was captured by Calico Jack and, once her identity was discovered, she became friends with Anne Bonny. She ended her days in prison. She also has multiple fictional depictions.

Flora Burn was a pirate during 1751 and worked on the East Coast of North America.

Rachel Wall lived from 1760-1789 and was a pirate during the 1770s, operating on the New England Coast. Married to the privateer George Wall, she's thought to be the first American female pirate. Her husband and his crew we down in a storm in 1782 and she was later accused of robbery in 1789. She confessed to being a pirate and was hanged.

The Chinese pirate Ching Shih was active from 1801-1810. She'd been a prostitute but changed her career to piracy upon marrying a pirate. Upon his death she became the leader of the entire fleet of more than 1,500 ships, worked by 80,000 pirates. She controlled most of the South China Sea and defeated the British, Chinese and Portuguese navies whenever they attacked her. Eventually she was offered peace instead and retired to marry her second in command.

The English/Australian pirate Charlotte Badger, aka Catherine Hagerty, operated in 1806 and is regarded as the first Australian female pirate. She was a convict who helped seized The Venus from its captain while the captain went ashore and sail it to New Zealand.

Sweden's last pirate Johanna Hård was born in 1789 and active as a pirate during 1823. She and 4 men who worked as farmers followed the Danish ship Frau Mette in a fishing boat, requested water, boarded the ship and killed the crew in order to plunder it. The men weren't so lucky but there was insufficient evidence against Johanna Hård so she was released.

The possibly fictional Sadie the Goat, river pirate during 1869 around New York State, head butted and robbed her victims. She was also a member of the Charlton Street Gang. 

The fictional Gertrude Imogene Stubbs was said to be a pirate during 1898-1903 in the Kootenay Lake and river system in British Columbia. She is the result of an April Fools joke mistakenly believed as fact.

Lo Hon-cho from East China was a pirate during the 1920s. She commanded 64 ships and was reported to be the most ruthless of all China's pirates. She attacked villages and fishing fleets around Beihai, imprisoning young women and selling them into slavery. A Chinese warship destroy 40 ships in her fleet in 1922. She was later handed over by the remaining pirates in exchange for clemency.

Lai Sho Sz’en who was a pirate from 1922-1939 in East China and controlled 12 ships.

Huang P’ei-mei who was a pirate from 1937 to the 1950s in East China led 50,000 pirates.

The Fujian province (China) pirate Cheng Chui Ping, aka "Sister Ping", was a active during the 1970s-1990s in the South China Sea. She smuggled thousands of Chinese immigrants to the U.S. and Europe. She was caught and is serving 35 years in jail.


Bêlit from Robert E. Howard's Queen of the Black Coast, a Conan short-story.

The anime character Emeraldas from Space Pirate Captain Harlock, Galaxy Express 999, and Queen Emeraldas by Leiji Matsumoto.

Dragon Lady from Milton Caniff's Terry and the Pirates comic was inspired by Lai Sho Sz’en.

Morgan Adams from Cutthroat Island.

Mary "Jacky" Faber from Bloody Jack.

Elizabeth Swann from Pirates of the Caribbean.

Mistress Ching from Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End.

Angelica from Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.

Nami and Nico Robin from the manga and anime series One Piece.

Ruth from the Operetta Pirates of Penzance.

The Chinese female pirate captain Missee Lee in Missee Lee by Arthur Ransome.

Ezri Delmastro and Zamira Drakasha from Red Seas Under Red Skies by Scott Lynch.

Elena Dugan, aka Lady Galbraith, in The Seas of Fionnghuala.

Nancy Kington and Minerva Sharpe in Pirates by Celia Rees.

Janme Dark from Aoike Yasuko's Sons of Eve manga series.

Space Pirate Sheila from the Space Thunder Kids anime.

Captain Marika Kato of the Bentenmaru from Bodacious Space Pirates.

Blackboots from Here Comes A Candle by Mary Hanson-Roberts.

The Surprisingly Curvaceous Pirate from Gideon Defoe's The Pirates! series.