Archive for September, 2011

it’s good to be old

September 30, 2011

I bring you news of the internet – where I have been hiding. I mean, thinking about writing.

I have found lots of pronz.  Which is sort of uh, not awesome.   Because I wasn’t really looking for it.  (Geez, you’d think that’s all that drives technology.  Wait a minute…)  But, I have found this totally awesome thing – here (warning, posts here are occasionally NSFW).  There’s Fanfic Friday, where there is much sporking of bad fanfic pronz.  Ohh, I love the spork. It is delish, yo.

And then, randomly, there are the cooking communities on LiveJournal.  Which is weird, because I sort of now equate LJ with fanfic that is often NSFW.  I have even found a slow-cooker community.  It’s like – I don’t know – all of my dreams of fanfic and food In One Place.

I’m so glad the Internet did not exist in its current form when I was in school.  I would never have gotten anything done.   I don’t wonder how the students these days are incapable of finishing anything – or so I’ve heard.  I’m barely capable of finishing anything.   Speaking of which, I should get off the net and actually start crackin’ on my exchange fic, now that I’ve gotten my assignment and all.  (But honestly, I’m sort of excited about it, you guys.)


I want to believe

September 23, 2011

Okay.  I’m in the fic exchange now.  Woo!  Just waiting til Sunday, when I get my mission.  (Also, why you gotta start to get so interesting, prompts?  And while trying to avoid prompts, I stumbled over the archives for Earthsea fanfic.  Now I want to write that.  Crap.  It’s like trying really, really hard to stay on a diet when I am surrounded by lushness.  It’s sort of hurtful.  So I am playing it safe and keeping to my blog.  Sorry to the 1 person who reads this.  You have become my diet drug metaphor.)

A couple of thoughts.  My previous fandom pairing, whom I still love, I have drifted from a little bit.  I think, for me, it wasn’t because of the lack of canon support.  (I don’t need no stinkin’ canon support.)  I think it was the feeling of a lack of community – I just couldn’t find something I liked.   Nothing on those other communities.  It’s just me.  I poked around a little bit on the Internet, and  I didn’t necessarily want to join up a bunch of different things just to see if I could find a community based around writing and talking about the pairing and about the original work.  I wanted just one thing (one golden, impossible thing).  I didn’t find it.  I don’t know why the fandom doesn’t have something like that.  And I’m no good for starting anything like that. I just want to write and read and squee.  I do not want to moderate/manage.

New pairing definitely has a community, and that was helpful in drawing me in.  (See previous entries on writing for the meme.)  Funny thing is that new pairing doesn’t have any canon support – zippo.  The pairing makes no sense.  I am completely aware of how crazy that sounds.  The characters are only in a couple of panels together – out of something like 52 volumes of graphic novel.  Yet I heart it so.  It helps tremendously that there was a large backlog of good fic.  I suppose I’m all “make me believe, I will heart you and your pairings forever.” Yeah, I’m a bit of a follower.  I’m willing to accept that.

Now I’m wondering how to make that part of my online identity without sounding all freakish/stalker-y.  (Because it’s true.  I read a couple of fabulous stories reccommended by a site whose mission is to rec good fics and I’m starting to get interested in those fandoms now.   And we’re talking crazy fandoms – fandoms that a few weeks ago I would have consigned to the lunatic fringe.  But now…I’m thinking about it.  Or at least, following those writers.)


September 23, 2011

I was complaining a while ago as I was filling a prompt.  The prompt had me continue a fanart/comic work (doujinshi if you’re familiar with the term).  The problem was that the medium.  Art can have conversations between people and they never need exchange names and you still know who they are.

This is not true with text.  It’s kind of a problem, actually, if based on this work, these two characters might not know each other’s names and if they are the same sex so there isn’t even the “he said, she said” thing going on.  I had to create a situation in which they learned each other’s names – or gave each other a mental nickname or something, otherwise, the writing could not continue for me.  How else would they be differentiated?  (Turned it into a theme, even.)

I realized this is the same thing for artists, the medium problem.  One of the characters wears a mask all the time in canon.  But in comic/art, especially extended comics, he’s rendered without a mask.  I’m guessing I know why.  Without the ability to draw in facial expressions, the artist feels they can’t accomplish the point of the story.  (Lots of times it’s a love story, and I could see how a masked face would simply not do for all the emotional things that go on in a story.  Anguish (blank mask).  Desire (blank mask).  Hope (blank mask).   You see?)

Char/blocked, one way or another.  (And yes, I did finish the fic, but I even complained about this issue in the notes at the end.)

feeling Joan Wilder

September 20, 2011

Is it good or bad when you’re thinking about writing a sad scene and start bawling?  (Just thinking about, not even moving towards the computer because you’ve got a sleeping kid on your arm?)

Last night I was struck with an idea and moved to write it down.  And during most of that scene, I cried like a baby.  The more I worked the scene, the harder I cried.  And yet, I was thinking “this is sooo good.”  (I know I said I wasn’t going to write anything new right now, but hell, it’s just a scene.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.)

This sort of thing doesn’t happen to me.  I don’t write sad stuff and I don’t write angst or tragedy.  (Must query distinction between the two).  But, in the name of expanding my repertoire, and the grip the scene had on me, I thought I should go with it.

I am totally reminded of the opening scene in the movie Romancing the Stone where the main character (a writer of romance novels) is finishing up her most recent manuscript and is crying the whole time she’s typing.  Then she’s finished and is desperately looking for something to mop up.  That me was last night.

I used the sleeve of my sleep-shirt.

Just thinking about the scene again is making my eyes water.  I am probably too much involved in that scene, is what I’m thinking.  There is no way I can objective about it.  Won’t be able to edit for a while – I’ll probably just start crying again.  But it was good crying – creative crying.

festering, I mean, festing

September 19, 2011

I just signed up for my first fic exchange fest. (Blows air out of chest nervously.) It’s oddly stressful, this waiting around for things to happen.  I mean, it’s a fic exchange.  What could happen?   They’re not going to reject me, right? It’s not like sorority rush or anything.

I know I can fulfill the minimum requirements of fest. (Of course, I want to do an excellent job and make my recipient very happy. But failing that, I will finish.)  I just have this little impatience problem.  Meaning, I can’t stand waiting.   It’ll be another week before I know if I’ve gotten in and get a project. I’ve decided I can’t start on new project – the prompt I receive will become new project. So, I guess I’ll work on old fics? (I guess?)

It’s good to know some responsible soul is in change of these things, and not me, otherwise, I’d be on it already – cue image of rabid dog lunging at end of chain. (I’m only good if I forget to be bad, which should not be a default setting.)  The window for creativity is open right now and I don’t want to miss it with the wait.  (It’ll be fine, I’m sure.  It’s just a prickly, too ready feeling I’ve got right now.)

I’ve thought for a long time about whether to do a fic exchange. It was, weirdly, a post from a moderator from another fandom that made me think about it. The gist of it was that they wanted people who had already written fics at some point, because exchanging does involve some pressure on the participants. The warning made me decide not to do that one (I wasn’t ready, I would have had to spend a lot of time catching up with canon, creative mojo at a lull), but it made me interested in this exchange process.

After doing some prompt fills, I think I’m ready.   I just hope I get in.

dear person

September 14, 2011

You have no idea how close you have come to making me quit this job today.

You think you can quote the specifics of my job to me?  What I am supposed to do for you?

You hole.

Instead, I will take my lunch early and walk it off.

EDIT:  I moved heavy stuff around my office and car for a bit.  Cooled down.  Feel better now.  😐

…and that’s the cost of hitting your head

September 13, 2011

Am starting to get the bills from Henry’s unfortunate accident.  The cost of 2 CAT scans in respectively, 1 emergency room and 1 trauma center for 1 night’s observation  is currently in the neighborhood of $15,000.00.  This does not include any of the specialists who looked at him, nor cost of transporting him between two hospitals.  Mind you, there was no actual surgery.  (No wonder people without health insurance go bankrupt.)

Am working through the paperwork right now.  Expect there will be more.

I don’t know how I feel about the cost – because it is high – but also because that was the price put on the skills and time of all of those people (nurses, doctors, EMT’s, the nice cleaning lady at the hospital, all the people we don’t see), and the equipment/building use.   That is worth a great deal – and we’d pay it – because Henry is worth so much to us.   (Can’t even think about what I would have done had it been more serious.)   We wouldn’t have done it any other way – and for a head injury, you need to be very cautious.  But it’s just crazy that amount of money, for a single day.  That’s all.

Just a squawk of protest because the hard, cold brick of reality just hit this dumb bird’s head very hard.


September 12, 2011

Crap.  I think I’m about to commit steampunk AU.

I don’t even know why.  The most important thing to understand about the Victorians is that no modern day Asian American woman with a liberal bend should in any way be interested in their views.  (W says they’re awful.  And he should know, having spent a lot of time researching the science of the period.  Science, which besides stretching the understanding of nature, was also heavily tainted with sexism, racism, and classism.  We’re probably still trying to crawl from underneath some of that stuff right now.)

Also, made W laugh.  Because the only visual I can really think about what people wear on airships is sort of what I remember people wearing from the movie “Chitty-Chitty Bang Bang.”  All trenchcoat and goggles.

Query:  Is steampunk an aesthetic?  Because the technology piece is awkward, from my view.  You’re constantly trying to fix their problems in a modern way without seeming “too modern.”

Stupid prompt.  But I’ve got a whole plot in my head now.  Grah.   I even went so far as to look up the design for airships.  *Stomps around angrily.*

vacation stuff

September 7, 2011

So we’ve come back from vacation.

We spent most of a week in Minneapolis, where W had a conference.  It wasn’t a great vacation for me, because I still had to take care of the kids but now in a new and different locale without any outside support.  Still, I got to see an old friend and her children and go to a bunch of different museums and generally have some different scenery.

Then we went to Hilton Head, SC, where my brother has a time-share.  (Why he has one is a completely different post – but the short of it is that he bought it on ebay sight unseen.  I mean, who does that?)  It was really nice, but sort of stressful.   First, our flight landed several hours late, so we had to book over to the car rental place because it was going to close.  Then W got stung by a jellyfish.  Then Henry slipped while running on tile, hit his head and then couldn’t stop vomiting.  So W ended up in an emergency room while they decided whether or not he had a subarachnoid hematoma  (Look it up, it’s f%@$ing scary.)  W went with him in the ambulance to the local trauma center in case they needed to do brain surgery.  They didn’t, but kept him overnight for observation.  (Henry’s fine now, and still running on tile – giving me agita all the time.) I yelled at him a lot following the hospital visit to just slow his skinny little butt down.

Well, at least we left before the hurricane got there.  That would have been just the finishing touch to a vacation worthy of writing about, in the negative sense.  (My brother is all “I’m sorry you used our time share and had a bad vacation.  None of that stuff ever happened to us while we were there.”  I don’t know if he’ll ever offer it to us again, given our experience.)  It wasn’t a bad vacation at all – it was pretty relaxing when I wasn’t all stressed out.

My usual bugbears were in residence – how much food to buy?  (Nothing but coffee was supplied – and I refused to buy sugar and salt for 6 days.)  What to do?  Are we lost?  How are we going to feed the children?  What do we take back with us?  But I was moderately productive and finished a short story I’d been working on.  (It was a prompt for a kink meme, and not very kinky.)  The kids loved the beach (and I loved it at low tide – it was amazing, so much beach!), and the kiddie pool on the property.  There was a surprising number of birds (pelicans, herons, gulls, terns, and a bunch I couldn’t name) – and J kept calling out “Birdie!  Birdie!” everytime we saw one.

I felt awkward about the playstructure being right next to the bar – because I wouldn’t want to see my kids seeing me drink – cocktail in hand, hanging out by the monkey bars.  I wanted the playstructure to be situation on a big plot of green on other piece of property – far from the bar, where my kids wouldn’t be able to see all those people drinking.  W says that nobody else but me would think it is wrong to have a drink at the bar and watch your kids play while you’re on vacation, because, guess what, you’re on vacation.

But I guess I’m applying non-vacation standards to a vacation.  Story of my life (the wrong application of situations to standards/thoughts/actions).  Sigh.


September 2, 2011

This morning, in NPR, there is an interview of John Banville (about his crime novels written under the Benjamin Black):

“I am a novelist and therefore a cannibal,” he says. “I eat whatever comes near me. Everything is material.”  (about 4:03, but the whole interview is pretty interesting)

My hair stood up on end and I stopped moving for a while.

Damn.  I recognize one of my own.  And I am a little afraid.

(You don’t want it to happen, and it’s impolite, you want to protect your children and loved ones, and yet, you still do it.  You pretend these people you write about are NOT your people, not the surroundings you’re so familiar with, but honestly, in some way, twisted or not, they are.  What’s worse, the more terrible the thing, the more delicious, in a way.  You also, honestly, consume your own flesh as well.  Sometimes, I think this writing thing is a bit of a sickness.)

Well, that was cheerful.  Welcome back from vacation, self.