Norður

Jul. 22nd, 2017 09:24 pm
naraht: (Default)
[personal profile] naraht
It's that time in the summer when I start to dream about being somewhere far to the north, with a view of the sea. To be fair, I also dream about the north in the depths of winter. To be even fairer, the weather here has been cool and rainy, so maybe that's made me think about northern climes.

If I were for some reason forced to spend a ridiculous amount of money on a hotel, I would go to the Fogo Island Inn, off the northern coast of Newfoundland.

Or maybe a less ridiculously posh place with bonus icebergs, the Hotel Arctic in Ilulissat, Greenland.

I remind myself that I've already got a weekend booked in Iceland on my way home to the States in December. And I can sit and enjoy views of the cold sea from a lovely steaming hotpot at any number of municipal pools. And my room probably has a view of the harbor!

But that's a long ways off. I'm pondering whether to plan an August long weekend somewhere in the UK, and whether it would be worth the faff to travel somewhere more northerly, as opposed to just going to Brighton or something. I'm very fond of Scarborough. I also have this weird desire to see the Isle of Man after watching the national road race championships a few weeks ago.

Also worth pointing out that I'm going to Saint Petersburg at the end of August, and perhaps that counts as northerly if not quite with an unobstructed ocean view? I'm rather tempted by Kronstadt...
alias_sqbr: (happy dragon)
[personal profile] alias_sqbr
Remix Revival 2017 A fanart/fanfic remix exchange with signups closing on the 30th. I think this is the first panfandom remix exchange allowing both, I'm pretty excited!

[community profile] drawesome A fanart community that has had some fun prompts

Let's Make Games and Drink Responsibly: A gathering for people in the local games community, it was a lot of fun and I had some really interesting and inspiring conversations. Cam came along and it was perfect for him, as someone who is really interested in discussing and making games but isn't working on anything right now. Also Scott Ludlum was there! (I was too shy to talk to him but he said he was happy to be among friends, which was nice to see) It's apparently going to be monthly, best way to follow it right now is probably the Let's Make Games Facebook group.

Today's DailyOM Offerings...

NSFW Jul. 21st, 2017 11:18 am
ariestess: (damien thorn -- from annie)
[personal profile] ariestess
( You're about to view content that the journal owner has advised should be viewed with discretion. )

Wonder Woman, Made of Clay

Jul. 18th, 2017 07:51 am
beatrice_otter: Wonder Woman--Black and White (Wonder Woman)
[personal profile] beatrice_otter
Thing I do not understand about what people take away from Wonder Woman: "Zeus and Ares considering Diana to be Zeus's daughter"="Diana was not sculpted from clay by Hippolyta."  It's like, they assume that the whole "sculpting from clay" thing was just a lie to get away with "where the heck did you get sperm on an island with no men."

I mean, the Greek gods were "born" and came to life in all kinds of weird and wacky ways.  Athena, for example!  Athena was Zeus' daughter with Metis (and very similar to Diana of Themyscira, in a lot of ways).  How was Athena born?  She sprang fully formed from Zeus's head!  He was still her father and Metis her mother.  A bunch of Zeus's other children were at least sometimes considered to have been born through means other than sexual reproduction.  (Ares' mom may have gotten pregnant with him by eating the wrong lettuce leaf at the wrong time.  Ares was still considered a child of Zeus.)  The Greek gods just kind of went with the flow.  The people involved in your creation (whether through sex or not) were your parents.

What I'm trying to say is, everything we are told in the movie could easily be true all at the same time: Hippolyta wants a daughter so she sculpted one out of clay and prayed to Zeus.  Zeus wants a god-killer to take out Ares, and so he obliged her by flinging a lightning bolt her way or whatever, and bringing the baby to life.  The Amazons know this, but what is most important to them?  This is their Queen's daughter, their princess, the only child on the island, their Diana who was sculpted out of clay by her mother.  What is most important to Ares?  That Diana was brought to life by Zeus and is thus his daughter, and therefore Ares' sister, whether or not her birth fits into the standard "mommy and daddy have sex and nine months later a child is born" model that is the only way humans reproduce.  Ares and Diana are not humans.  They are Greek god and demigod.  Ares, in particular, scorns humans, so why would he care about human definitions of parenthood and sibilinghood?  Especially when he's trying to get Diana onside.  "Come join the family" is a lot more compelling than "come join the dude you've been taught to hate all your life for all the horrible things he's done."

As for Diana?  How does she consider herself?  What is most important to her?  That she is Hippolyta's daughter, sculpted from clay.  Yes, she was brought to life by Zeus.  Yes, that means that in the way the Greek gods thought, Zeus was her father.  She acknowledges this tie.  That means Ares is her brother.  But I bet you that when you ask her how she was born, five minutes heart-to-heart with Ares on a battlefield doesn't overturn the fact that she is an Amazon and thinks like one.  And therefore, unless you are specifically considering her role as god-killer, the fact that Hippolyta sculpted her from clay is far more important than Zeus's contribution.

Look at the battle between her and Ares.  She doesn't really ... react much when Ares starts calling her his sister.  She doesn't look, talk, or act like a person having a major identity crisis.  She's just like, "okay, you want to call me sister, sure, fine, whatever, guess that fits too, let's get on with this."  She doesn't react like "OMG, my mom LIED to me, everything I know about myself is a lie!"  It's more in line with "oh, right, yeah, from your POV Zeus's contribution is the most important, whatever."

drabblemania! And other festathons!

Jul. 17th, 2017 11:50 am
isis: Write what you're told! (micah wright)
[personal profile] isis
The second annual Multifandom Drabble Exchange ([community profile] multifandomdrabble) went live yesterday, and I received a gift and a treat:

Summer turns towards Autumn by [archiveofourown.org profile] weakinteraction - The Man in the High Castle (TV), Tagomi and Juliana post-S2. I do wonder what is going to happen in S3 when they eventually meet again, and this is a lovely teaser!

The Visitor by [archiveofourown.org profile] Alona - The Divine Cities series by Robert Jackson Bennett, Mulaghesh gen. I prompted "accidental kitten acquisition" and this made me smile because it's so in character.

I was assigned to write for [archiveofourown.org profile] st_aurafina:

A New Hobby - Lord John series by Diana Gabaldon, Lord John/Stephan von Namtzen (okay, it's really gen, but) in a stealth fusion with an undisclosed fandom. Lord John Grey visits Waldesruh again, and learns about Stephan von Namtzen's latest obsession.

I also wrote a bunch of treats (all G-rated):

Saucy Wench - Hot Sauces (Anthropomorphic), Cholula/ Tapatío - There's a new girl on the shelf.

My Sin - due South (TV), Frannie Vecchio/Maggie McKenzie - Licking the evidence runs in the family.

Fire - Frontier Wolf by Rosemary Sutcliff, Teleri(/Connla) - Everyone in the village said they should wed, with their matching crowns of fiery hair.

The Bicycle Rule - The Giver by Lois Lowry, The Receiver gen - It was one of the few rules that was not taken very seriously and was almost always broken. (The Giver, chapter 2.)

One More Earthly Pleasure - The Witcher 3 videogame (actually for the DLC Hearts of Stone), Shani and Vlodimir - In which Gaunter O'Dimm doesn't banish Vlodimir at midnight.

Aboard the Psi-Ship Foxway - The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater, gen - 300 Fox Way IN SPAAACE.

Here are links to the main collection and the treats - a lot of tasty bite-sized fandom bits to sample. My favorite so far unfortunately points up the problem with drabbles - that they are so tiny and can only tell a very limited story - because it's a drabble sequence and therefore encompasses a lot more story than a single 100-word chunk can tell. But it's really amazing:

Forward/Back (500 words) by lalalalalawhy
Fandom: Original Work
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Time Traveler/Time Traveler
Characters: Time traveling OCs, Original Female Character(s)
Additional Tags: Time Travel, Drabble, Drabble Sequence
Summary:
I skip through time like a flat stone on a still lake, spending days here, a few hours there, always moving forward. My love is the same, but reverse. Her lake is a mirror of mine. She only ever goes back.
A love story in five drabbles.

In other festathon news, I'm planning on signing up for both [community profile] crossovering and [community profile] remixrevival, which are both open for sign-ups now! Check 'em out!

random non-spoilery TdF observations

Jul. 14th, 2017 09:51 pm
naraht: Chris Froome and Peter Sagan chatting (other-HelloFroomey)
[personal profile] naraht
I've been feeling inexplicably unwell so I finished work early this afternoon and spent it lying on the couch watching the Tour de France...

• One of Britain's top cyclists from the 80s, Philippa York, has just publicly come out as trans during the Tour. Apparently she had been avoiding public life for some years, but people in the know were aware that she'd transitioned. What's heartening is that the reception from the cycling world has, as far as I can tell, been extremely supportive. She's been guest commentating on ITV for a few stages now, and I haven't heard a single stumble over name or pronouns. Chapeau, Philippa. It must have taken a lot of courage.

• David Millar gets so into the tactics. You get the feeling that he doesn't care so much who wins (or does a good job of covering it up, unlike Carlton Kirby, who has his crushes), but he gets passionately angry if he disagrees with a team's choices: "why are they doing that??!? It's ridiculous! What are they trying to achieve???"

Yet when Ned Boulting asked, he heartily and believably denied having any desire to be out on the mountain himself: "no, no, a thousand times no."

• I've managed to get my parents into watching the Tour. They're both backing Froome. What did I do to deserve this?

• As always, a special thanks is due to whoever at ITV does the end-of-show montages. They are always superbly on point and they almost always choose great music. Today I owe them particular thanks for introducing me to the music of Jacqueline Taïeb, a French singer of Tunisian origin from the 60s.

Apart from being a great song, Bravo just makes me think of the "Carlien Daten?" saga. (Spoiler: after the date they "decided to just be friends.")

I don't get the feeling that Taïeb pities (or particularly respects) the hero, though perhaps I'm reading too much into it...

(French lyrics)



• ETA: What have I learned from the Orica Backstage Pass so far? That Esteban Chaves is reading a Danielle Steele novel and that (unrelatedly) Matt Hayman has had to explain to him what a "bromance" is.
beatrice_otter: WWII soldier holding a mug with the caption "How about a nice cup of RESEARCH?" (Research)
[personal profile] beatrice_otter
One of the things we fans love is our Woobbie Heroes, the guys (like Daniel Jackson or Bucky Barnes) who suffer so beautifully.  Hurt-comfort, we loves it, precious.  (And oh, I am dating myself with those terms.)

Anyway, there are a lot of fics about, say, Bucky recovering from torture, or where his psychological recovery is a large part of the story.  And one thing I've noticed is that the treatments for PTSD that people normally use are behind the times.  Like, they'll have talk therapy, and maybe a therapy animal or journaling--and these are good and helpful--but there's been a LOT of research into trauma disorders and recovery in the last two decades, and a lot of developments of new treatments.  Talk therapy is not the gold standard of what a cutting-edge therapist recommended by Tony Stark would use.  It might well be part of the therapy, but not the whole of it.  And Sam Wilson, working at the VA, would certainly know this as well.  I am not a professional, but I have read enough of the top books on trauma to have some feel for the subject.

If you would like to incorporate some more current research, understandings, and techniques, the best place to start is The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk.  He's got decades of experience and research dealing with combat vets, survivors of childhood abuse of every kind, and every sort of trauma you can imagine.  The book is well-written and interesting and suitable for a non-specialist to read, and it covers the history of trauma in psychology and how we learned what we know today, along with some very interesting case studies.  Best of all, the last few chapters are overviews of what he's found to be the most effective forms of treatment, including a brief overview of what the treatment is and their best guesses as to why it works, and then some examples of what's happened when he has used it or seen it used.  (Also, it's fun how he burns the DSM-V and some of his colleagues.  Like, there is SO MUCH SHADE, OH MY GOD.)

If you want some medical jargon to use in your fic, the place to start would be The Body Bears the Burden by Robert Scaer.  Scaer is a neurobiologist, not a psychologist, and boy howdy can you tell in his writing.  This one is a little more challenging, but it has a lot of medical stuff if you want to use that in your fic and wikipedia isn't doing it for you.

17776

Jul. 13th, 2017 02:19 pm
isis: (lego draco)
[personal profile] isis
I followed a rec from [personal profile] vass in a comment to a post at [personal profile] jamethiel and hply sjot, I have fallen down a rabbit hole! I had seen references to 17776 at ffa but ignored them, because once I realized it wasn't a typo for the musical it turned out to be a multimedia web thingy about football, which is not something I'm interested in.

But it's not about football. Well, I suppose it is, on some level, but it's Calvinball-football, something called football that has one toe still in the contemporary game but "now", in the far far post-quasi-apocalyptic future, is mostly an outrageously inventive pastime for bored immortals, which we are shown through commentary by old spacecraft which have now achieved sentience, including one who has just "awoken" and so has to have everything explained to it by the others.

It is a WIP, apparently updated daily. I am not sure how much is out or how far along I am, but I just finished the Page, Arizona chapter, in which opposing teams become trapped in a canyon with sheer walls and continue battling for thousands of years. (I have been there in real life! I am amused!)

Anyway, if this description intrigues you: https://www.sbnation.com/a/17776-football/

wednesday reads 'n things

Jul. 12th, 2017 04:31 pm
isis: winged Isis image (wings)
[personal profile] isis
What I've recently finished reading:

Assassin's Fate by Robin Hobb - I liked the story, appreciated the way the ending called back to other elements of the series (and felt it a solid, satisfying ending), but I am not sure why this book didn't resonate emotionally with me. Perhaps it's because having read the series over such a long span of time, the characters' lives are less fresh and compelling to me. Perhaps it's because this book's ambitious scope in tying together not just the final trilogy but all the Realms of the Elderlings sub-series required so many sub-plots that it seemed an overwhelming brick with too many diversions. I enjoyed reading it, as I enjoyed most of the series (Rain Wilds, ugh) but toward the end I was feeling as though it was more a chore than a delight, and I'm glad I'm finished.

The Magpie Lord by K. J. Charles - Better than the average m/m novel, but that's a low bar. The magic is interesting (and the best part of the book); the plotting is pretty good, though the ending is a bit abrupt, with a sudden influx of new characters whose villainy could have been set up better through the narrative; the romance is all right, though a bit too heavy on the size-difference kink for my taste. I'm not particularly inclined to seek out the rest of the series, though I have to say I'm intrigued by Stephen's partner Esther, who was mentioned but didn't actually appear in the story.

Dungeons & Dreamers: A Story of how Computer Games Created a Global Community by Brad King and John Borland - This readable, engaging book traces the development of multi-user computer games and non-game shared social spaces (such as Second Life) from their roots in tabletop gaming and D&D, through text adventure and then graphic action/adventure games, to current (as of writing, which is not current at all) massively networked games. I found the early chapters particularly interesting because I, too, was a D&D geek and gamer in the late 70s/early 80s (though I drifted away after early graphical games such as Spacewar, and text games Zork and Advent and their progeny); it was like reading the book equivalent of the TV series Halt and Catch Fire, the underlying stories of things which I experienced as a casual user at the time.

There is certainly more focus on certain people and game companies than others, but this doesn't purport to be a complete history of games and gaming. Instead this focus (which wavers at times, admittedly) serves to build the thesis that (most) people like narrative and social interactions, even while killing monsters. I think it's a reasonable view, though perhaps it leaves out the meta aspect of people who like to play single-player games (which I imagine are the majority of games available) but who then congregate on Reddit and other forums to share their experiences and screenshots. Anyway, recommended if you have an interest in this sort of thing.

What I'm reading now:

Right now I'm down to my audiobook, Plus One by Elizabeth Fama, which I am a little more than halfway through. I'm finding it surprisingly interesting and enjoyable for YA dystopian SF. I mentioned last week that I thought I'd read a short story with a similar premise, of people split into night people and day people, and while browsing the Goodreads reviews I saw one person mention that it was sort of based on a book called The Day Boy and the Night Girl, which is an 1882 fairy tale novel by George MacDonald. I checked it out on Wikipedia and while it sounds interesting, it's not the story I was thinking of.

What I'm reading next:

I might have to read the fourth Expanse book, because B keeps blathering about the books while we watch the show. He also has been reading the Wayward Pines books and thinks I should read them. (The author is a friend of a friend.) I have some various random stuff in ebook I ought to read sometime, things I've downloaded through Instafreebie (though so far I have not been impressed), through the Tor free ebook series, and through other promotions.

What I'm watching now:

We are 6/10 through S2 of The Expanse! It is weird to me how the TV seasons don't match up with the books very well. The things I think of as being the important stuff that happened in the second book have not even occurred yet (well, one of them finally did in E6). What a pretty show, though.

What I'm watching next:

I heard a rumor that Winter is Coming. Huh, looks like summer to me.

Discord!

Jul. 12th, 2017 09:27 pm
alias_sqbr: And yet all I can think is this will make for a great dreamwidth entry. (dreamwidth)
[personal profile] alias_sqbr
The irc-like chat program Discord is the new shiny fannish social media. One advantage over irc is that it shows all messages posted, not just the ones you're there for, which makes for a better ongoing conversation. The advantage over tumblr etc is the ability to have private-ish, moderated, communal conversations. The advantage over message boards and mailing lists is that it's new and shiny.

I quite like it but it can be tricky finding servers (eg chat rooms) relevant to my interests. Currently I'm only a member of public ones, so I can share the links freely. Here are all the ones I know about.
Read more... )

Not Ready for Prime Time fest recs

Jul. 11th, 2017 05:24 pm
isis: (Default)
[personal profile] isis
I didn't sign up, but I looked through the collection to read stories in fandoms I know, and there are three that are really quite good and you should read them, too, if you know these fandoms:

Good and Bad Alike (We Keep Meeting) (1609 words) by [archiveofourown.org profile] sevendeadlyfun

Fandom: Hamilton - Miranda
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Characters: Thomas Jefferson, Angelica Schuyler
Summary: He does not meet her at Versailles. No one, the Duc D’Orlean proclaims, meets anyone at Versailles. Angelica and Jefferson meet in Paris. They part in America.

I love the historical details, and Angelica comes alive here as the central character in her own story.

Peat Smoke Rising (3065 words) by [archiveofourown.org profile] feroxargentea
Fandom: The Eagle of the Ninth - Rosemary Sutcliff, The Eagle | The Eagle of the Ninth - All Media Types
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Marcus Flavius Aquila/Esca Mac Cunoval
Characters: Esca Mac Cunoval, Marcus Flavius Aquila
Additional Tags: book canon, Missing Scene, Wilderness, Hiking, Hurt/Comfort, Sharing Body Heat, canonically ambiguous relationship
Summary: \Peat smoke rising. Two worlds entwined.

I really like this gentle story; the language evokes the book-language without feeling like pastiche, with lovely Sutcliffian scenery and descriptive details.

strawberries and sunlight (3252 words) by [archiveofourown.org profile] polkadot
Fandom: Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Catherine Bennet/Georgiana Darcy
Characters: Catherine Bennet, Georgiana Darcy
Additional Tags: Falling In Love, Flirting, Declarations Of Love
Summary: It was some four months since Kitty had come to stay at Pemberley, when she found to her great astonishment that she had not thought of young officers in a fortnight.

Kitty's slow maturity as she moves away from Lydia's orbit to Georgiana's, and then her examination of that change in herself, is lovely to see. And Georgiana's obviously blossoming here as well, from the shy and withdrawn girl in the novel to someone who has found what she wants and is patiently waiting for Kitty to figure it out. This is probably my favorite of the stories I read from this fest.

ETA: edited in author names post-reveal.
naraht: Chris Froome and Peter Sagan chatting (other-HelloFroomey)
[personal profile] naraht
I did actually laugh out loud at this one. I love these guys. Can they be a Yuletide fandom?

Colonoscopy post July 2017

Jul. 12th, 2017 12:39 am
alias_sqbr: Me on a couch asleep with a cat sitting on my lap top, with the caption out of spoons error (spoons)
[personal profile] alias_sqbr
Mostly for my own future reference. I'm making this public in case other people find it useful, but if you don't have a colonoscopy coming up you will probably find it TMI and boring.
Read more... )

Oops

NSFW Jul. 11th, 2017 07:56 am
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