Daily Happiness

Aug. 27th, 2014 10:14 pm
torachan: a cartoon bear eating a large sausage (magical talking bear prostitute)
[personal profile] torachan
1. I went in to work and got all the ordering done that I forgot about yesterday. Now I can come home an hour early one day!

2. It was hot today and looks like it's supposed to be hot for the foreseeable future, but at least at work I have air conditioning. (It actually wasn't too bad with the fans on today, at least most of the time.)

3. Picked our first tomato today and it was super delicious! There are quite a few more on the plant and a ton of flowers that will hopefully turn into tomatoes, but nothing else is ripe yet.

4. There's apparently a Bob's Burgers comic! I haven't read it yet, but I do have it on my phone and am looking forward to reading it.

5. Rather than holing up in one of her safe spots for the night, the kitten slept in the bed with us last night. It was sweet, though also a little annoying as she kept wanting to sleep right where my head was. Definitely a sign that she's really getting used to it here, though.

Here she is exploring the sofas this morning and stretched out napping on one this evening.

Question: Avengers and the Enneagram

Aug. 28th, 2014 05:12 pm
china_shop: Sam in casual wear, laughing on the phone (Default)
[personal profile] china_shop
I'm still wrapped up in reading about local politics, and also communicatively stunted, and also engaged in offline activities like going to the gym and making lemon honey and doing endless crosswords and reading, but I'm going to try to post more, starting with this:

Can anyone point me to an enneagram analysis of the various Avengers and associated characters, including Peggy and Sam?

*waves*

disclaimer: I suck at memes

Aug. 27th, 2014 09:35 pm
helens78: A man in a leather jacket, seated on the ground, looks up hopefully. (Default)
[personal profile] helens78

Domesticity meme, from Tumblr -- I am a LOT more likely to do these if it's here. :)

Choose either Charles/Erik or Sam/Steve and one of these, and I will see about possibly rambling (I need to warm up the writing muscles again, they have atrophied in the last year and a half!):

  • big spoon/little spoon
  • favorite non-sexual activity
  • who uses all the hot water
  • most trivial thing they fight over
  • who does most of the cleaning
  • what has a season pass on their dvr/who controls the netflix queue
  • who calls up the super/landlord when the heat’s not working
  • who steals the blankets
  • who leaves their stuff around
  • who remembers to buy the milk
  • who remembers anniversaries
  • who cooks normally?
  • how often do they fight?
  • what do they do when they’re away from each other?
  • nicknames for each other?
  • who is more likely to pay for dinner?
  • who steals the covers at night?
  • what would they get each other for gifts?
  • who kissed who first?
  • who made the first move?
  • who remembers things?
  • who started the relationship?
  • who curses more?
  • what would they do if the other one was hurt?

(PS: If anyone has a Sam/Steve icon, or can point me to a resource for one, I would greatly appreciate it. :D)

30 days and DragonCon!

Aug. 27th, 2014 11:13 pm
astolat: lady of shalott weaving in black and white (Default)
[personal profile] astolat
OK haha so maybe the day before I leave for DragonCon not the best time to join in on the 30 days of posting but what the hell. Maybe I will also get to some of the leftover topics/questions people threw me mumbly mumbly before, uh, I don't even remember when that last meme was, sigh.

ANYWAY: the content of this post is, I am going to DragonCon! Hope I see some of you there!

PS: I am going to have a box of shiny shiny ARCs of the new book (Uprooted, my first non-Temeraire novel unless I count Revelations, hee) with me. I'm going to be bringing a few to each of my various panels/signings to give away, so if you're coming to one of them & want me to earmark one for you, drop me a line/message -- am happy to save for fangirls. :D

Posting Meme

Aug. 27th, 2014 10:44 pm
cesperanza: (Default)
[personal profile] cesperanza
OK, so [personal profile] heresluck and [personal profile] norah and some others decided they wanted to do again the post-Vividcon posting meme we did last year, and so what the hell, I'm in--I'll try anyway! I can't promise long and meaty, and I can't promise even to proofread that well, but I'll try to do a post a day for at least a month or so.

So! The quick tl;dr as to where I am is a kind of a good news / bad news situation, which is to say the good/bad news is that I'm having a helluva time doing anything after I've dealt with a) my 4 YO kid, b) my sick elderly parents and the endless TO DO list associated with trying to slow their rapid decline, c) teaching---other than WRITING FIC: there's so much story in me right now, it's actually kind of terrifying. I'm going to have to find some way to trick myself into doing more other writing though before the deadlines really stomp me hard. But I am in a deep deep swoon of fannish love with the whole Cap America/Marvel thing - but I think I will save some of the details of my swoon (and also some weird attendant crotchety-ness) - for another post!

one happy thing makes a post

Aug. 27th, 2014 08:43 pm
heresluck: (chucks)
[personal profile] heresluck
The Gaslight Anthem's new album Get Hurt came out on August 12, and I have been listening to it like it's my job. (Seriously, I had a four-hour drive to a wedding a few weekends ago and another four-hour drive back, and I listened to this album the whole way.)

I don't know whether it's good in any objective sense, but wow, I love it. Like really, really love it. TGA has had a fast track to my heart for years now, and this album is no exception. It is pretty much everything I want a rock 'n' roll album to be.

norah: Monkey King, lookin' sly (Default)
[personal profile] norah
If I'mma egg you all on to do it I suppose I'd better post too, eh?

I am currently:
  • In the weeds at work
  • Stuffed up with a godawful cold
  • Trying to navigate my health insurance FSA
  • Obsessed with The Sing-Off and more specifically with Pentatonix
  • The parent of a third grader, oh my god
Frankly, none of this seems interesting enough to tell you about. Usually when I feel deeply boring to other people I rec stuff, but I stopped even keeping track of things I read and liked sometime in the middle of last year, because the guilt was weighing on me and I knew my life wasn't going to get less complicated any time soon. I mean, sure, next year I'll have two kids in public school, but I'm thinking of running for school board, so. Life expands to fill the available space, is what.

Here is the wildlife photography I did in Canada while the rest of my family took srs bznz photos )

I don't know, guys. I have a lot of pain in my heart about the news, a dearth of answers, a lot of scatterbrained running about in the detritus of my life tidying things without making any forward progress. Maybe I'll have something more substantive to say tomorrow.

Writing Meme

Aug. 28th, 2014 10:00 am
out_there: A present for my 25th birthday (SGA: Reading Rodney by Celli)
[personal profile] out_there
Because all the cool kids are doing it, the writing meme that's going around. My stuff is on AO3, so nominate a question that you'd like answered:

A. Describe your comfort zone—a typical you-fic.
B. Is there a trope you’ve yet to try your hand at, but really want to?
C. Is there a trope you wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole?
D. How many fic ideas are you nurturing right now? Care to share one of them?
E. Share one of your strengths.
F. Share one of your weaknesses.
G. Share a snippet from one of your favorite pieces of prose you’ve written and explain why you’re proud of it.
H. Share a snippet from one of your favorite dialogue scenes you’ve written and explain why you’re proud of it.
I. Which fic has been the hardest to write?
J. Which fic has been the easiest to write?
K. Is writing your passion or just a fun hobby?
L. Is there an episode section of canon above all others that inspires you just a little bit more?
M. What’s the best writing advice you’ve ever come across?
N. What’s the worst writing advice you’ve ever come across?
O. If you could choose one of your fics to be filmed, which would you choose?
P. If you only could write one pairing for the rest of your life, which pairing would it be?
Q. Do you write your story from start to finish, or do you write the scenes out of order?
R. Do you use any tools, like worksheets or outlines?
S. Stephen King once said that his muse is a man who lives in the basement. Do you have a muse?
T. Describe your perfect writing conditions.
U. How many times do you usually revise your fic/chapter before posting?
V. Choose a passage from one of your earlier fics and edit it into your current writing style. (Person sending the ask is free to make suggestions).
W. If you were to revise one of your older fics from start to finish, which would it be and why?
X. Have you ever deleted one of your published fics?
Y. What do you look for in a beta?
Z. Do you beta yourself? If so, what kind of beta are you?
AA. How do you feel about collaborations?
AB. Share three of your favorite fic writers and why you like them so much.
AC. If you could write the sequel (or prequel) to any fic out there not written by yourself, which would you choose?
AD. Do you accept prompts?
AE. Do you take liberties with canon or are you very strict about your fic being canon compliant?
AF. How do you feel about smut?
AG. How do you feel about crack?
AH. What are your thoughts on non-con and dub-con?
AI. Would you ever kill off a canon character?
AJ. Which is your favorite site to post fic?
AK. Talk about your current wips.
AL. Talk about a review that made your day.
AM. Do you ever get rude reviews and how do you deal with them?
AN. Write an alternative ending to a fic you've written (specify by title, link or general description).
lunabee34: (sga: rodney profile grin by mona)
[personal profile] lunabee34
[personal profile] fingalsanteater asked me: so I just met McKay in Sg-1 and I recognized he was a main character in SGA (which I'm waiting to watch until after SG-1, though I might start it after season 7) and one half of the main pairing for the fandom. But, OMG, he was such a dick. I'm assuming he gets better (he does open up a bit the next time he's around, but he's still pretty awful and I'm so glad Sam told him she hated him because she was echoing my sentiments exactly). So, does he get... better? What is it about the McShep pairing that draws you? [link]

My answer got a bit long. :)

These tl;dr move in herds )

What do y'all think? What unlikable characters have you come to love? Is there anyone you can't bring yourself to like even when everyone else has jumped on board? Tell me why I'm wrong and Rodney sucks, whatever. LOL

Photo Meme

Aug. 28th, 2014 09:17 am
out_there: I *heart* El! (WC: El by  btfl_decadence)
[personal profile] out_there
Because I'm bored and scattered, and I know I'll be flying out in 48 hours, let's try starting a photo meme.

The theme is "sights we take for granted". I'd like you to post three pictures:

a) your hand
b) your keys
c) a sight you see every day

Photos )

In my case, I took a shot of the houses across the street from my place (complete with this morning's cold foggy weather). What do you see every day?

Enlightened self-interest

Aug. 27th, 2014 05:35 pm
jadelennox: Fierce cat: You wanna piece of me? (t-cat)
[personal profile] jadelennox
Okay, so here is this Nice White Liberal's ™ self-interested reason for wanting to reform the racism and corruption in the US criminal justice system ASAP, besides the obvious reasons like "holy crap I apparently live in the Panem Capitol and no I'm not Cinna" and "when the revolution comes, I'd rather not be first up against the wall."

Basically, I don't trust any USian police officer worth a damn with the civil liberties or lives of black people in general and black men in general. So every time I am in a situation where I'm uncomfortable and might otherwise call the cops -- who despite my lifetime distrust and fear of the police are going to be pretty nice to the middle class white lady -- I second guess. Does the group of people making me uncomfortable include any black boys or men; do I feel unsafe or just unpleasant; do I think anyone is actually in danger? I would like to know that I can call the cops on vandals without freaking worrying about a disproportionate response.

(I'm not sure where my built-in fear and loathing of cops came from; maybe from growing up in a mobbed-up town?)

More on the first episode of series 8

Aug. 27th, 2014 04:31 pm
kass: Clara hugs Twelve. (doctor-hug)
[personal profile] kass
My apologies to anyone who is following me on tumblr and doesn't care for Doctor Who. *wry grin*

I've been seeking out reactions to "Deep Breath" off and on all day. Probably my favorite thing I've read so far is Please just see me - Doctor Who recap at Head Over Feels.

I laughed out loud at their caption for the "What do you think?" gif of him showing off the new costume. And I really like the analysis of Clara and her increasing awesomeness, the section on their chemistry, and the bit about the phone call Clara gets near the end, because. Yeah.

Oh! And at the very end, there's speculation about the woman named Missy, and now I am totally on board that train omg.
musesfool: a sword (honour demands it)
[personal profile] musesfool
It's Wednesday reading meme time:

What I've just finished

I finished up Kraken not long after I posted about it last week. I enjoyed it a lot, for all that I wasn't emotionally tangled up in it. It's super clever and wryly funny and it features a squidpocalypse cult and dudes who have fists for heads. I feel like spoilers ) So I would recommend it, if you don't mind a bit of a hefty read.

I also read The Girl in the Road by Monica Byrne, which I thought had some excellent writing and ideas in it, but which I just didn't like. It's the story of two young women on similar journeys - both Mariama and Meena are on the run from something (something that is sadly obvious, in Meena's case. I'm not sure if I was supposed to know from the start or if it was supposed to be a mystery that spoiler ) and they're heading from an old (unhappy & terrible in Mariama's case) life in India to what they hope will be a new start in Ethiopia. Their journeys take place at different times, but they intersect spoiler? )

There's some fascinating world-building happening here - inexorable climate change means that some parts of the world have started to be drowned and that energy as always is a crisis, and a company in India has managed to build a prototype of a solar array that runs from India to Africa and if it proves feasible, it will be replicated in other areas of the world. There's stories about people walking on the Trail, as it's known colloquially, and Meena decides that's what she's going to do. (Mariama is a young child when she makes her journey - she's found by some helpful truckers.)

There were a couple of issues for me with this book. spoilers )

This also should come with a warning for non-graphic child abuse: spoiler, if you want more details ) And there is also some gore I could have done without: spoiler )

I also feel like Meena's sections suffered somewhat from what I was talking about yesterday. A lot of this book is stuck in her head while she's by herself, and spoilers ) it gets samey after a while. At least Mariama is interacting with her fellow travelers.

Anyway, I felt like the writing was much stronger in this than in A Madness of Angels, or maybe I just really wanted to know more about the Trail, because I kept reading, and it does contain some interesting world-building - I really wanted to know more about the politics and science of this world, and the other people who'd walked the Trail and who were living on the seasteads etc. and maybe I'm just unsympathetic etc. but yeah, that was basically my response.

I also reread Lords and Ladies and Men at Arms, which I enjoyed very much.

What I'm reading now

The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo by Tom Reiss, which is the story of Alex Dumas, father of the novelist Alexandre Dumas. I basically read the prologue at lunch and then my bosses started calling my name so I am about five pages into it. But I'm sure I'll have a lot to say eventually!

What I'm reading next

Ha! I can answer this question for once! After I finish The Black Count, I plan to finally read The Three Musketeers, which I have never done before. So unless something else from my hold list at the library comes in, that's the plan.

***

not dead yet

Aug. 27th, 2014 12:01 pm
lolaraincoat: (Default)
[personal profile] lolaraincoat
What do you know, it's been more than two years since I've posted here, and I'm only back to link you to this, because you, beloved if neglected friends, are precisely the people who need to see it.


http://imgur.com/gallery/Bq4D6

SHOW SHOW SHOW <3

Aug. 27th, 2014 09:54 am
kass: Tardis. Something old, something new... (tardis)
[personal profile] kass
Last night I finally managed to see the first episode of the new season of Doctor Who.

I am here for the squee. )

ETA: also, omg this charms me: Doctor Who fanart by Peter Capaldi.

(no subject)

Aug. 27th, 2014 01:21 pm
marina: (Default)
[personal profile] marina
I have nothing to talk about that's cheerful (trying to frantically sell my furniture, dealing with family drama, dealing with asshole "roommate", dealing with landlady, dealing with movers, packing up all my earthly belongings, preparing for the joyful weeks I'll be spending sleeping on people's couches, doing all of this in addition to working full time - fun times!) so let's talk about Outlander.

book spoilers )

Daily Happiness

Aug. 26th, 2014 10:56 pm
torachan: maru the cat peeking through the blinds and looking grumpy (maru peeking through the blinds)
[personal profile] torachan
1. Super busy day at work, so much so that I completely forgot to order stuff I usually order on Tuesdays and now I have to go in tomorrow morning and order it. But I'm glad I remembered now, before it's too late, and if I go in tomorrow for an hour or so, that means I can take a short day somewhere else.

2. Because I was so busy today, I didn't get to take my lunch until late, which meant I could go to Taco Bell and get a Baja Blast Freeze! I stopped getting them all the time because now that I go in to work earlier my lunch doesn't fall during their happy hour and I'm unwilling to pay full price when I know that I could get it for a dollar if I just went during that time! XD

3. The pet adoption lady stopped by tonight to give us some eyedrops for the kitten's runny eyes (a condition she already had when we adopted her, and the lady said to let her know if it didn't clear up soon and she would give us the drops; I just think she didn't have them with her at the pet store). Hopefully that will clear up soon. She's also sneezy but I think that's just from the dust. I vacuumed before we brought her home, but she keeps getting into all these nooks and crannies that are not as well cleaned. :-/

4. Speaking of the kitten, I think we've settled on Heidi for her official name, because of all the hiding she likes to do. XD (Though I mostly seem to call her baby or kitty when talking to her.) Every time I think we've figured out all her hiding places, she finds somewhere new. First it was the desk cupboard, but now her new favorite place is inside the sofa. Last night I found her underneath the sofa, and then this morning I could not find her anywhere and started to wonder if maybe she'd actually gotten inside of it. Then as I was kneeling down next to the back of the sofa wondering how I could go about trying to find out if she'd gotten inside somehow, I heard a snuffling that was definitely coming from the sofa! Then I remembered that the back of it has velcro at the bottom to lift up the fabric so you can take the sections apart to more easily move it, and sure enough when I lifted up the fabric of the section where the snuffles were coming from, there she was.

Tonight she got really, really playful and also very cuddly. She definitely seems to be getting used to us. She has happily snuggled when we picked her up before, but that required some chasing to get her, whereas tonight she was actually coming to us.

Here is your cute kitty pick of the day.

Culture Consumed Wednesday

Aug. 27th, 2014 03:41 pm
vass: Jon Stewart reading a dictionary (books)
[personal profile] vass
Books

Started reading How To Be An Adult, by David Richo, because Emily Nagoski of The Dirty Normal described it (in her attachment styles primer) as a book which "simply, frankly, and gently lays out the steps to sorting out your shit so that you can have relationships with people." So I'm giving it a go.

"The center of our entire psyche (both conscious and unconscious) is the Self. It is our inner archetypal wholeness that creates a constant balance between the opposing forces of ego. For instance, it is the Self that finally reconciles effort and effortlessness, injury and forgiveness, control and surrender, conflict with others and acceptance of them, awareness of defects and unconditional love. The Self does this because it is pure unconditionality, which is all-inclusive love." (page 2)

Jung had a LOT to answer for. >:(

Comics and Manga

Read Fullmetal Alchemist vol 7. 20 volumes to go. It would help if I had any idea what was going on. If I could follow the action scenes or understand the cultural context, including the humour, or keep the plot straight in my head. Any one of those three would make a big difference. Maybe I'm not cut out for manga.

Fanworks

Dira's There's My Territory, Steve/Bucky/Sam, about the healing power of silk panties and spiced cookies. Made me hungry.

Games

Finished replaying Secret of Mana. It only took me 26 and a half hours or so, total.

I had forgotten quite how upsetting I find the end. I remembered hating it, but not all of the reasons. Spoilers after the cut.

spoilers, animal harm )

Music

Listened to one of the early Tori Amos albums I hadn't listened to before, Boys for Pele. Note to self: the first line of the second song does not go "Got me samosas to ride on, to ride on," whatever your brain might tell you.

The bare voice and piano songs, the dreamy ones, make very good listening when you're sleep-deprived.

Podcasts

Started listening to Rachel and Miles X-Plain The X-Men. Approve. Professor Xavier is a dick! Magneto has great fashion sense! The Brotherhood of Evil Mutants name themselves the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. And there are 17 more episodes for me to catch up on!

Perfume

My new STC order arrived, but I haven't played with it yet except to apply a bit of Caron's Pour Un Homme before bed.

Crafts

Perler Captain America shield, just big enough to fit a can of soft drink. It worked out better than the Batsignal in one respect: the Batsignal turned out slightly convex, which makes it unsuitable for drink containers (but still okay for bowls or plates, provided they have a broad base and are heavy.) I improvised the pattern.

picture )

CA:TWS Fic: There's My Territory

Aug. 26th, 2014 09:26 pm
dira: Bucky Barnes/The Winter Soldier (Default)
[personal profile] dira
So I decided I wanted to write fic about Bucky wearing panties. And then I realized that there had to be a reason he was wearing them and where did Bucky even ACQUIRE panties and...

So anyway, thirty thousand words later: Bucky in panties fic!

Many thanks to [livejournal.com profile] rubynye for supporting this story all along and [tumblr.com profile] feanorinleatherpants for not only cheering this story on but illustrating, and to [personal profile] giddygeek for beta!

There's My Territory (29587 words) by Dira Sudis
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Captain America (Movies), Marvel Cinematic Universe
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: James "Bucky" Barnes/Steve Rogers/Sam Wilson, Steve Rogers/Sam Wilson, James "Bucky" Barnes/Steve Rogers
Characters: James "Bucky" Barnes, Steve Rogers, Sam Wilson (Marvel)
Additional Tags: Lingerie, Cookies, Threesome - M/M/M, Internalized Kink Shaming, Disordered Eating
Summary:

"That's the beauty of this stuff," the salesman said, tilting his head toward the display Bucky had been looking at. "Nobody knows what you're keeping under your clothes. That's between you and yourself."

posting challenge redux

Aug. 26th, 2014 08:20 pm
heresluck: (nada surf)
[personal profile] heresluck
[personal profile] norah has reminded me that last year, prompted by [personal profile] cesperanza and others, a bunch of us did a "post each day for 30 days" challenge that started shortly after VVC and ran right through September. She's suggesting that we revive the challenge, to which I say YAY.

I am comitting to a start date of September 1, because my time between now and then is more than usually tight. But I may try to do at least a few lines daily in the next few days, just to get back in the swing of things a bit.

Who's in?
gwyn: (air band)
[personal profile] gwyn
It's taken me a while to post this, but since this is a microscopic fandom (as in, I think, so far as I've been able to find, I'm the only one making vids for it), just haven't got around to it. But yay, here it is.

We Rule the World
Fandom: Happy Endings
Artist: Dragonette
Summary: Let's pretend that we rule the world.



HQ DL here at my vids site.

Fever Season, by Barbara Hambly

Aug. 26th, 2014 02:35 pm
rachelmanija: (Books: old)
[personal profile] rachelmanija
Benjamin January is working at a hospital during a yellow fever epidemic. (Yellow fever is transmitted by mosquitos, and due to being endemic in Africa, many people from Africa have some level of immunity. The characters in the book are aware of the latter fact but not the former, and have no useful treatment even if they did know the cause.) Meanwhile, both free people of color and slaves are mysteriously vanishing. In more cheerful news— well, cheerful for a while— Ben meets Rose, a free woman of color running a school for girls. Rose is a great character, and their slow burn romance is lovely.

That being said, the book as a whole was awesomely depressing. Not only was it set in a yellow fever epidemic, not only did it contain a brief but absolutely horrifying torture sequence, but both the epidemic and the horrifying torture were actual historic events, ie, they really happened to real people. Also, dead children. Truly grimdark, though not gratuitously given that it’s real history. Not even Ben and Rose’s charming courtship and politicly crude policeman Abishag Shaw’s delightful way with words ("But I do think I should point out to you that even if Miss Chouteau gets cleared of Borgialatin the soup herself, it ain't gonna win her freedom,") can lift the general gloom.

I have been told that this and Sold Down the River are the darkest books in the whole series. However, I already started Graveyard Dust, and it looks like Hambly is careful to get new readers up to speed on events, so Fever Season is probably skippable if you like the characters but want to miss the awesome depressingness.

Fever Season

Spoilers: Read more... )
musesfool: Batman + A BABY driving a BUS (just like driving a really big pinto)
[personal profile] musesfool
I was all confused when [personal profile] liseuse posted her Wednesday reading today, because it's still Tuesday here! but I did want to discuss a book that I picked up and put down this weekend, and while it probably should go in the Wednesday meme, I feel like the stuff I have to say about it is more about a narrative choice that applies more widely than about this book in particular (especially since I only got about 45 pages in), and I have a lot to say about some other things I read over the past week, so those will probably take up a lot of space too.

Anyway! So I mentioned that Saturday I went out to MCU* Park in Coney Island for the Cyclones game, which means around 90 minutes (or up to two hours, depending on wait times/delays etc.) on various bits of public transportation. This is prime reading time for me, and I was looking forward to starting a new book. The one I chose was A Madness of Angels by Kate Griffin, which I had picked up because it was recommended in the same breath as the Rivers of London and Felix Castor series, both of which I enjoyed (though admittedly, the former more than the latter).

The story opens with about 35 pages of the narrator - who doesn't quite know what's going on - describing things. Now, he has his reasons for being so disoriented (and they are pretty good), but good lord, it's page upon page of overwritten descriptions of things without any meaningful interaction with other characters (except for an interaction with something trying to kill him, i.e., spoiler ), which was clever and should have been entertaining, but the writing was so bogged down in endless metaphors and neither the writer nor the narrator seemed to have any sense of whimsy or humor in dealing with it), and I realized that unless your narrator is super charming, like Peter Grant, whose personality pops off the page right on page 2, or your writing is both enjoyable to read on a sentence level and moves the story along, I'm just going to get bored.

I realize that this is at least 75% about me and my reading taste (and my very limited attention span for scenic description) and only 25% about the writing, but I'm begging you, as an avid reader: don't waste a promising start like your main character waking up from being dead for two years on endless, overextended metaphors about garbage (um, that's not me being judgy; he spends a lot of time talking about the trash littering the street where he is) without ever giving a sense of who the character is. I mean, I guess this was a guy who thought up a lot of ways to describe garbage? IDEK. It just went on and on and on, and there I was on the D train thinking, "I can't with much more of this." And I was kind of a captive audience, you know? (Had I had a paper book and not my iPad, I would have been a captive audience and I'd have been much more pissed off about it.) And yet it went on for another five pages. And then he finally does meet up with another person and he's a huge asshole about it and I was like, "I am so not here for this jackass," so I closed out of it, opened up Lords and Ladies and enjoyed the rest of my epic train ride.

And it's not that I can't or don't enjoy asshole characters (I can, and do), it's that having spent 40 pages on my own with this guy, I had no desire to go further. And even when I do like a character, if you send them off on their own to have an epic internal monologue for fifteen or twenty pages, I am probably going to get bored.

This was also my main issue with the third Steerswoman book. I really like Rowan a lot! But I did not want to read a whole section of her on her own observing creatures doing the same things over and over again. It is boring! This is also why I tend not to enjoy reading solo Batman adventures. He's going to investigate broodily. Then he's going to narrate broodily. He's going to brood a bit - broodily. Then he's going to punch some guys broodily. And then there's going to be more broody narration because he's a noir hero and his parents are DEAD and wah wah wah please talk to someone soon before I claw my own face off, Bruce. And no, Jason's case doesn't count.

Ahem.

To get back to this book in particular, then there's the part where there was no frisson of delight - the metaphors were lugubrious and landed like wet blats of used paper towels on the floor of a public restroom. Like, with Kraken, last week I said I wasn't getting the same sense of glee that I have from other writers, who seem to really enjoy what they're writing in a way that comes through to me as a reader, but in the end, I did feel like Mieville was pretty pleased with the crazy shit he put in the book, if in a gloomier and more subdued manner. And it certainly had a sense of wryness, a deadpan that permeated the gloom. (And it was entertaining even if it wasn't particularly emotionally engaging.)

This book did not have that, not in the small bit I read, anyway, and it needs to come through to leaven both the ponderous narration and the character's unpleasantness. Someone needs to be having a good time somewhere, even if it's just the writer enjoying putting the characters and the reader through the wringer! And this book did not have that spark at all and I just didn't like it.

(Interestingly enough, I did finish another book this week that I also didn't like very much, but which I found much more compelling and interesting to read. I'll talk about that tomorrow though.)

Anyway, like I said, this is in large part a matter of taste - I also can't stand most of Dickens or Theodore Dreiser, which has gotten me the side-eye more than once - so if you enjoyed this book, or books in this style, um, mileage obviously varies! And my mileage is much more interested in books that don't do this.

--
*it stands for Municipal Credit Union, not Marvel Cinematic Universe OR Major Crimes Unit

***

News and New Books

Aug. 26th, 2014 10:17 am
marthawells: (SGA Team)
[personal profile] marthawells
News:

The release date for Stories of the Raksura I may have been moved back to September 16, at least for the trade paperbacks. (Amazon says September 23 but maybe that's part of an extortion attempt -- you just can't tell with Amazon.) The ebook listings are still listed as releasing on September 2 and the audiobook also still lists September 2. So, I don't know. You guys may know before I do.

And the ebook is now up for preorder on Kobo. It just took Kobo a while to join the party, apparently.

And the ebook compilation of The Cloud Roads, The Serpent Sea, and The Siren Depths is available on Kindle, Nook, and Kobo and also on iBooks. The DRM free versions are on Baen.

And The Cloud Roads is available in trade paperback again.

FYI, I am incredibly grateful for preorders, putting in requests for your local library to buy any of the books for their collection (they may also be able to get them for you through interlibrary loan, adding them to GoodReads or LibraryThing lists, reccing it to your friends, or reviews even if you didn't like it.

***

New Books:

* The Mirror Empire by Kameron Hurley
On the eve of a recurring catastrophic event known to extinguish nations and reshape continents, a troubled orphan evades death and slavery to uncover her own bloody past... while a world goes to war with itself. In the frozen kingdom of Saiduan, invaders from another realm are decimating whole cities, leaving behind nothing but ash and ruin. At the heart of this war lie the pacifistic Dhai people, once enslaved by the Saiduan and now courted by their former masters to provide aid against the encroaching enemy.Stretching from desolate tundra to steamy, semi-tropical climes seething with sentient plant life, this is an epic tale of blood mages and mercenaries, emperors and priestly assassins who must unite to save a world on the brink of ruin.

* Of Metal and Wishes by Sarah Fine
This love story for the ages, set in a reimagined industrial Asia, is a little dark, a bit breathless, and completely compelling.

* Kickstarter: BLACKGUARDS: Tales of Assassins, Mercenaries, and Rogues
I'm not in this anthology, but Carol Berg is, and I'll be in one of the anthologies they're doing a kickstarter for next year.

* Havoc by Ann Aguirre
The Conglomerate’s most dangerous convicts have made the prison ship Perdition their home. And they will defend it

Trip pics

Aug. 26th, 2014 09:32 am
rachelmanija: (Default)
[personal profile] rachelmanija
I'm on vacation in Asheville, North Carolina. I have photos of sights in the town, pretty dresses, etc and more sights plus my new hair cut.

Good News

Aug. 26th, 2014 08:01 pm
emma_in_dream: by coloured squares (pic#5356769)
[personal profile] emma_in_dream
The WA Story Books are produced by Indigenous people, highlighting positive stories of community and individual development. The latest to come out is the Kimberley edition: http://healthbulletin.org.au/articles/the-west-australian-indigenous-storybook-celebrating-and-sharing-good-news-stories-the-kimberley-edition/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+AustralianIndigenousHealthbulletin+%28Australian+Indigenous+HealthBulletin%29


Read it – It’s so nice to read good news stories for a change.

Daily Happiness

Aug. 25th, 2014 11:15 pm
torachan: brandon flowers of the killers with the text "some beautiful boy to save you" (some beautiful boy to save you)
[personal profile] torachan
1. The (still unnamed) kitty is getting used to the house and us. She still spends a lot of time in various hidey-holes (she especially likes the cupboard of Irene's desk, which has a fairly large pass-through for cords so she can get in while the cupboard door is still closed and then just hang out in there; it's also nice and warm because it has hard drives inside), but the difference between yesterday and today is pretty noticeable. Tonight she explored around the house a lot while we were watching TV and then later while we were in the computer room she got super pouncy and playful and was bounding all over the room. Here's a pic of her just after she pounced on a particularly dastardly shoe.

Thanks to everyone for commenting on yesterday's kitten post. ♥

2. This weekend's sales were really great. People seem to be buying a lot of the new items we got in during our remodelling.

3. Irene made a delicious roast chicken for dinner tonight and there's a ton of leftovers, too. (I think I may make a chicken salad for lunch tomorrow.)

Scanlations: Tera Girl ch. 1 part 2b

Aug. 25th, 2014 10:21 pm
torachan: a drawing of a girl holding up buddhist beads as if in prayer (tera girl)
[personal profile] torachan
I finally got a volunteer to help out with this series, so since I already had the next chapter translated, we were able to get it out quick! :)

Thanks to Ai for cleaning and typesetting!



Title: Tera Girl
Original Title: 寺ガール (Tera Girl)
Author: Mizusawa Megumi
Publisher: Ribon Mascot Comics Cookie
Genre: Shoujo
Status in Japan: 3 volumes, complete
Scanlator: Megchan's Scanlations + Ai
Scanlation Status: Ongoing
More Info: Baka Updates

Summary: When your father is a Buddhist priest and your home is a temple, life can be complicated. For Satoru, Hikari, and Ogami, the thought of who will inherit the temple and take over when their father gets old is always in the back of their minds, especially when it comes to matters of the heart. Because Hikari loves the temple so much, it's been all but decided that when she grows up, she'll marry someone who can take over from her father, but when she falls for someone completely unsuitable, all three sisters find themselves re-examining their assumptions.

Chapter summary: Hikari's dad finds out she's been visiting a church and does not approve...



Chapter 1: Fukufukuji - Hikari - Part 2b

outlander

Aug. 25th, 2014 09:27 pm
go_gentle: (Default)
[personal profile] go_gentle
Okay, here are some things I said on Twitter just now:

"i don't want to write outlander fic, but there's only so many times one can yell in email about how they need to make out. hmm." "i think maybe what i want is longform, free association, spoiler friendly episode-by-episode discussions?"

So this is an experiment in building it and seeing if they will come [back]! Let's say, hmm, anything aired, anything in preview on starz.com, any episode titles, and anything in books 1-3 is fair game.

some initial thoughts, likely to be added to in-between fighting a Raven Boys shipwar elsewhere )

Recs + Meme

Aug. 25th, 2014 07:13 pm
lunabee34: (Default)
[personal profile] lunabee34
I realized that in the rush of the semester starting again that I forgot to link to the lovely story written for me in the Jack/Daniel ficathon. Everyone go read Blue World by [personal profile] topazowl, who did wonderful things with my prompt. The rest of the stories can be found HERE (some are still pending).

Now for that meme everyone has been doing:

MEME )

All my fic is here at AO3.

Beware!

Aug. 25th, 2014 02:37 pm
jetpack_monkey: (Default)
[personal profile] jetpack_monkey
I am learning how to use Motion 5.

Expect at least one vid that's just pointless effects.

don't need to discuss much

Aug. 25th, 2014 01:11 pm
musesfool: Jaime Reyes is the Blue Beetle and he don't need no superpowers to kick ass (and i'm all out of bubblegum)
[personal profile] musesfool
Wow, so the fantasy draft thing is pretty intense, considering it all happens in silence on a website. (There was a chat function, but I didn't say much.) I'm okay with the team I ended up with, mostly because I drafted third in the first round and so was able to procure Peyton Manning as my QB1. There were a few guys I waited too long for and lost out on (Pierre Garcon, Percy Harvin, and Ladarius Green, and also the Niners D), but I was able to get a couple other guys I wanted (Davis, Hilton, Bryant). And how could I resist having SMOKIN' JAY CUTLER as my backup QB? (I was told it was okay to not have backups and just pick one up on waivers the week I needed one, but I felt more comfortable and also he was available, and I was afraid I'd end up with, like, Geno Smith or something.) I also took a couple guys that ESPN swears would be useful but not game-changing (Bell, Tate, Robinson) but who could have breakout seasons, and also Trent Richardson, who has to have a bounce-back year right? (and at least I didn't draft Ray Rice, which someone actually did.) So here's what my team looks like going into week one of the season:

The Mighty Asgardians
QB1: Peyton Manning
RB1: Ben Tate
RB2: Trent Richardson
WR1: Dez Bryant
WR2: TY Hilton
TE: Vernon Davis
FLEX: Joique Bell
K: Mason Crosby
D/ST: Broncos D/ST
Bench-QB2: Jay Cutler
Bench-TE: Zach Ertz
Bench-RB: Khiry Robinson
Bench-WR: James Jones
Bench-WR: Jarrett Boykin
Bench-K: Jay Feely
Bench-D/ST: Ravens D/ST

Now I plan to pay little or no actual attention to anything until I have to...submit a roster for Sunday's game? I don't even know how it works. I'm sure my niece will let me know if there's something I need to do.

Before the draft, I made dinner, but I completely misread the recipe and though it needed fresh cherry tomatoes, not a can of cherry tomatoes (I have never seen them in a can!). It said you could substitute a can of diced tomatoes instead, but I didn't have that, so I just used the tomatoes I roasted last week and the fresh tomatoes and sadly, it did not coalesce into a sauce when baked. But I still have 3/4 of the pasta so I'm just going to mix up some ricotta/mozzarella and add some actual sauce and bake the whole thing as ziti (well, it's actually shells, so... you know what I mean). But that'll teach me not to read a recipe before I set out to make it.

I also made lemon cake again, and this time I added some raspberries to it, which meant it took a little longer to cook, but oh, it's still so good.

***

Happy things post!

Aug. 25th, 2014 10:25 am
jenna_thorn: text "happy dance" Joyfully smug Rodney McKay (happy dance)
[personal profile] jenna_thorn
I feel like hammered crap today, so to get my mind off my gut, let's play the happy game.

What makes you happy? Specifically, detailed, right now, big or small, anything and everything that makes you happy.

Here, I'll start. At the restaurant yesterday, a woman came to our table while we were staring at menus and complimented me on my shawl, which yes, I had knit, thank you very much. ( this is the pattern, but mine looks a lot like that)

A co-worker dropped by this morning to show photos of his new puppies, who are adorable with fuzzy ears and big paws and are named Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday, which is like five points of happiness sticking out in all directions. A puppy fur wad of happy.

And, as seems to be so common on "I feel like crap, let's be happy" posts, a wave of the pompoms for indoor plumbing.

Books Drive for Ferguson Library

Aug. 25th, 2014 09:37 am
marthawells: (Reading)
[personal profile] marthawells
Books for Ferguson: Once Scott Bonner, the director of the Ferguson Library, indicated that their library would be open to taking donations, both of cash and of books, I saw many people willing to donate. I was heartened by this, but I was also concerned that people would send them things that end up not being useful for their collection and end up taking time and effort to get rid of. So, following the example of annual book drive GuysLitWire hosts for Ballou Library, I thought the best approach was to create a list for people to buy from. And what better way to start than with the suggestions from #KidLit4Justice?

Book drive! Follow this link for the Powells wishlist and the shipping address of the Ferguson Library.

Profile

thefourthvine: Two people fucking, rearview: sex is the universal fandom. (Default)
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