copperbadge: (Default)
[personal profile] copperbadge
I still have to review Extra Virginity as well, but I actually liked that one, so it will take longer to compose….

One of the things I did get done yesterday between work, the ball game, and the Epic Sunburn, was finish a slim book of short stories called A City Equal to My Desire by James Sallis. This wasn’t a book that was recommended to me, which means I don’t have to feel bad about truly disliking it. I found it in a keyword search on the library website for books about ukuleles, and it has a short story called Ukulele And The World’s Pain, which admittedly was one of the better stories in the book despite still not being very good.

From what I can tell, he did pick the best story out of the book to develop into a novel, “Drive”, but it is very obviously unfinished in short-story form. Sallis has a couple of ongoing problems in the short story collection, one of which is that he tends to skip the vital information you need in order to know what the fuck is going on. And not in a “the blanks slowly get filled in” way, or in a “your imagination is more terrible” way (though there is a little of that) but just in a way where like…he says something that you understand to be vital to the story but which is missing context, then spends like a page describing the fucking diner someone’s sitting in, and by then any context forthcoming doesn’t get linked back. It’s like being in the middle of a paragraph when you hit the photo plates in an older book – yes the photos are very interesting thank you but I need to finish the thought you were sharing with me before I go back and look at them. I think maybe he thinks this is challenging the reader but it’s not, it’s just annoying and makes what are otherwise interesting premises totally opaque. I shouldn’t need to work this hard for a story about a hit man who decides not to kill a politician. 

If the book had a more cohesive theme in terms of the stories, it might be more readable – he clearly enjoys building worlds and then doesn’t quite know what to do with them once he’s built them, so if this was an entire book of “weird and different worlds” ala Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities, I would buy in more fully and I think he would have put a little more elbow in. But it’s not. It’s mostly “here’s a really interesting world and a person living in squalor in it does something while being in it”. Also he appears to be fascinated by describing things that are shaped like pi. And a lot of times it feels like he read a wikipedia article on something and wanted to share some knowledge, so he just kind of built a half-assed story around his wikiwander. 

And all of this I would probably let go if say, it was something I was noticing in a fanfic writer, or someone who was just starting out, or someone I felt was genuinely trying to get a point across. But there’s this inexplicable sense of arrogance to the collection, a sort of smugness to it that in professional writers drives me up the goddamn wall. Stephen King sometimes falls into the same trap, where it feels like the author believes they don’t have to respect their readers because they are The Writer. 

The thing about volumes of short stories is that you keep reading it because sometimes there is a real gem. And there are one or two good stories in the volume, but I don’t know if they’re worth the rest of it. 

So my review I guess is mostly me being annoyed, but it boils down to “If you like short stories in the SFF Noir genre, give it a whirl, but if you’re bored with a story none of them get better, so feel free to skip to the next one.” 

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Advantages of a two-house household

Jul. 21st, 2017 12:36 am
fairestcat: Dreadful the cat (Default)
[personal profile] fairestcat
For those who don't know, we live in an up/down duplex. Marna, Ian and I live upstairs and Lorayne has the downstairs, with two spare rooms for any guests of upstairs or downstairs.

Lorayne also has two window AC units. One of which is in her big spare bedroom. We do not have any AC upstairs, just a lot of fans.

It's been hot and humid as fuck in Ottawa for the last week. It's finally starting to cool down, but the heat is really lingering upstairs. Last night I couldn't fall asleep because of it.

So, I said fuck it and am sleeping downstairs tonight.

Dreadful followed me downstairs and was staring forlornly out the screen door, so we invited him in. So, Dreadful's sleeping downstairs too tonight.

Rayne's cats, Kina and Chakra, are less than impressed.

They've met Dreadful before, and even lived with him for a week when we stripped the wainscotting in the kitchen several years ago, so we're not worried it'll come to blows overnight or anything. They'll cope. And I think Dreadful is enjoying the change of scenery.

Also, the lack of dog.

Oh yeah, we got a dog. We've had him for about a month. Our intent was to foster him, but Marna fell in love, so now he's ours.

His name is Bogart, we think he's some sort of pointer cross, but he was rescued from the Everglades, so we can't be sure. He's about 18 months old and weighs about 40 pounds. He's a sweetheart, but he has some behavioral issues we're working on.

And Dreadful has NOT reconciled himself to this new family member yet. He's never lived with a dog before, and he's not sure he wants to now. They're cohabiting relatively peacefully, but Dreadful is still keeping his distance.

ETA: and then Kina and Dreadful got in a fight in the hallway. So much for not coming to blows. So, now they're locked on opposite sides of the dog gate for the night.

*sigh*

Kidlet story

Jul. 20th, 2017 09:23 pm
resonant: Little Red Riding Hood and wolf. Text: "La beta noire." (beta noire)
[personal profile] resonant
New Draco-centric story from the kidlet over at AO3! I betaed. I even offered some comments that were not smiley faces.

I know exactly why I walk and talk like a machine (24327 words) by terminally_underwhelmed
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Harry Potter - J. K. Rowling
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: Graphic Depictions Of Violence
Relationships: Minor or Background Relationship(s), Pre-Harry/Draco - Relationship
Characaters: Draco Malfoy, Lucius Malfoy, Narcissa Black Malfoy, Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, Blaise Zabini, Luna Lovegood, Arthur Weasley, Astoria Greengrass, more like ace-storia amirite, various OCs, Minor Characters
Additional Tags: Epilogue What Epilogue, War Aftermath, Emotional Growth, Bureaucracy, Pre-Slash, Friendship, headcanon dump
Series: Part 1 of Solitaire/Mercenary
Summary:

They're together when the Dark Lord falls.

Draco is barely aware of his own senses, half-blind and exhausted from months upon months of corrosive fear, and whatever shred of reality is still allotted to him is in his father’s urgent grip on his shoulder and his mother’s hands around his and the way he leans on both of them.

Hamilkitties!

Jul. 20th, 2017 03:09 pm
rachelmanija: (It was a monkey!)
[personal profile] rachelmanija


Curious Alex.





Erin, waiting for it.

fairestcat: naked woman reading. vintage (Reading)
[personal profile] fairestcat
As promised, some books I've read:

Point of Hopes (Astreiant, #1) - Melissa Scott & Lisa A. Barnett -
★★★★

Complicated mystery plot in a fascinating, intricately-crafted fantasy universe.

I really appreciated the casually mainstreamed queerness in the worldbuilding. read more )

The Ruin of a Rake - Cat Sebastian - ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

This book has everything I loved about Sebastian's previous books. Complicated, flawed and messily human characters, a clear-eyed and intelligent class analysis and a refreshingly unapologetic queerness. read more )

Point of Knives (Astreiant #1.5) - Melissa Scott - ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

A satisfying mystery with an even-more-satisfying beginning of a romance between the main characters as they transition from people who sleep with each other occasionally to people who'd like to have a romantic relationship with each other. read more )

Peter Darling - Austin Chant ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

An amazing queer, trans reimagining of the Peter Pan story. read more )

The Horse Mistress: Book 1 - R.A Steffan - ★ ★ ★

Enjoyable poly fantasy with a genderqueer protagonist. read more )

A Boy Called Cin - Cecil Wilde - ★ ★ ★ ★

I'd describe this book as an aspirational romance. It's a delightful, cozy fairytale of an idealized relationship. And that's not a bad thing. I think there's value particularly in queer aspirational romances. read more )

There Will Be Phlogiston (Prosperity, #5) - Alexis Hall ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I picked this up because it was free and I'd heard good things about the author, but honestly I was mostly expecting a smutty, poly diversion.

What I got was so much more. read more )

Chasing Cameron: the complete series - Hanna Dare - ★ ★ ★ ★

A series of m/m novellas with a lot of sex, not all of it between, or only between, the two protagonists.

I was really pleasingly surprised by how non-mononormative this series is. read more )
fairestcat: Dreadful the cat (Default)
[personal profile] fairestcat
One of the benefits of the new mood-stabilizer is that I'm reading again. After reading my way through a shit-ton of fanfic, I'm now switching between fanfic and pro novels.

I'm mostly only interested in reading queer stories at the moment, which has meant a lot of queer romances and also SF/F with queer characters and relationships.

I started with everything ever written by KJ Charles and OMG was that a good choice. Her stuff is AMAZING. Highly, highly recommended. She writes m/m historical romances, some straight historicals, some fantasy. One of the things I love historical queer romances because I love reading about queer people in history being happy, and Charles' books totally fill that desire.

A lot of queer historicals, or at least a lot of the ones I've read, are really interested in class and the intersection of class and sexuality and how that impacts relationships. Class differences are at the heart of almost all of Charles' books and it makes for a great lens through which to look at the various historical periods she writes in. The other thing that makes me happy about her books is that very few of her protagonists are uncomfortable with or tortured about their sexuality, which is again really refreshing to read about.

Then I moved on to Cat Sebastian's regency romances which I also highly recommend. Again with the queers being happy and not angsting about their sexualities and again with the class and anxiety about class differences being a significant factor in all the relationships.

I also highly recommend Joanna Chambers' Enlightenment series, in which one of the characters is quite guilty about his sexuality, which is possibly more realistic, but doesn't appeal to my id in quite the same way.

It was at about this point in my dive into books again that I got myself a Goodreads account, which is here, and started actually reviewing stuff as I read it.

Several people I read here regularly post reviews of the books they've read on their journals, and I think I'm going to start being one of them, I'm not going to commit to any specific schedule, but expect semi-regular book posts (the first going up directly after I finish writing this post).

The other thing I'm loving about Goodreads is having a place a list of books I've been recced that look interesting. I'm almost entirely reading digitally these days, mostly on Kobo. So, when I want to read something new I can go to my Goodreads to-read shelf and see what strikes my fancy. There are a lot of books with poly relationships in there right now, because I specifically solicited recs for queer, poly stories on twitter.

If you're curious my to-read shelf is here, and I'm always taking recs. Nothing too serious or dense right now, I'm still easing my way back into this reading gig.

No good very bad day

Jul. 19th, 2017 10:19 pm
gwyn: (8ball wizzicons)
[personal profile] gwyn
Today's my least favorite day once again. The date I lost Miss Olive two years ago, and I'm not over it--I think about her every day, and miss her, especially now. I could really use her soft, soft fur and sweet purrs and funny little voice when she talked to me all the time. And it's the day we lost Sandy, which I'm never gonna be over, either. With Vividcon ending next year it feels even more like losing Sandy all over again.

Basically July 19 is just a terrible horrible no good very bad day.

I'm trying to get things done in anticipation of the surgery and whatnot, but it's really hard. Not only is there a lot to do, the bills are starting to come in, and I'm getting really depressed about it. I haven't had enough work so far this year, but even though I suddenly have a bunch of stuff coming in, it's not going to be paid for a while yet. Even with the ACA still hanging on, this country is majorly fucked up about health care costs, and it's pretty easy to go bankrupt even with insurance.

Last night we went to see the documentary Score, about composing music for films, at this teeeny local theatre that was the first art house in Seattle way back in the '60s. I hadn't known it was still in business--it's run by vounteers now, and the lobby is now a restaurant so the actual theatre is about one-tenth the size it used to be. The movie was great--if you have a chance to watch it, you should: there were some really good reminiscences by directors and other composers about some of the legends, and interviews with all kinds of fascinating film composers, plus a glimpse into the process of recording film scores.

My only complaints were one I shared with feochadn, which was that a guy went on and on about King Kong (the first real movie score) being cheesy and stupid, and that the music was the only thing that helped audiences get over the cheesy and stupid, which is utterly, patently false and doesn't understand the audience dynamic at the time the original King Kong was released. And my second gripe was that as they talked about modern scores and unique or avant garde approaches, they interviewed and spent quite a bit of time following the guy who did the utterly forgettable Age of Ultron score instead of spending any time with Henry Jackman, who did the Winter Soldier score, which most people I know still talk about with a certain amount of awe. Especially because I think it would have dovetailed nicely with talking about the "game-changing" soundtrack for the Social Network by Trent Reznor (I'm not one of the people who think it was game-changing, but whatever), and they did talk to Henry Jackman, but only for a microscopically short time. Plus, they didn't list Winter Soldier in his credits, and that was…weird to me. And it's not my own blind prejudice for anything related to Winter Soldier--I've read so many people talking about the amazing things he did with that score, especially regarding the Soldier himself, and it just seems like a huge missed opportunity in the modern section…and instead we got fucking Ultron. I'd defy anyone to remember anything unique or special about the music in that movie. But I still definitely recommend seeing Score if you can, and stay for the credits and James Cameron's dicussion of James Horner's score for Titanic. (It's in a couple cities right now, and rolling around other parts of the country for the next few months--you can find out where on the web site linked above.)

I wish I knew how you find a therapist. I am very lonely and depressed, and there's no one to talk to here, but I just don't know how you go about finding someone you mesh with, and who's competent, and one you can afford (the importance of either can be switched). I mean, I've met some truly shitty people in RL who I find out later are therapists and it's like O.o so the idea of going into this cold doesn't thrill me.
lynnmonster: (Default)
[personal profile] lynnmonster
I came home kind of late tonight.

When I went to grab the metal cat bowls I use for the kittens' wet food, I noticed that the plastic bases they nest in were a bit dirty and picked them up to wash as well.

Inner metal bowls and plastic outer holders get washed. I put down the wet food in the naked metal bowls while the plastic holders dry off in the rack for a while longer.  

While the kittens are still nomming their dinners, I retreat to my bedroom and close the door.

When I come out again for more than a quick bathroom trip, the metal bowls are gone.

Now, when the bowls are not in their bases, they are lightweight and can be nudged around pretty easily. However, I have a very small one bedroom apartment. 

So I check under every piece of furniture in the rooms they had access to. I check behind doors and furniture and anything else. I check between things and on top of things. I check under the throw pillows on the couch, even though that's ridiculous.

I check the trash, the recycling bag, the sink, the stovetop, and inside the fridge, just in case I wandered around on autopilot and put them somewhere without thinking about it. (I really, really didn't, but I check on the off chance that I am actually losing my mind.) 

People, these bowls are GONE.

What the hell???

________________

7/19 ETA:  Mystery solved -- hiding in plain sight! 
 
They wound up INSIDE the identical metal bowls for their dry food (which don't move around as much since they were properly nested in their outer plastic holders). 
 
Still no idea whether they were put there by me or the cats.
 


What I'm Doing Wednesday

Jul. 19th, 2017 09:36 pm
sage: close up of a slice of lemon held up against the sky, dripping (lemon)
[personal profile] sage
books (Christie, Arendt) )

allergy mystery food challenge weirdness )

pockets a happy shopping adventure )

yarning
Friday is the 6 month anniversary of the Women's March, so now I have another calendar deadline for showing at least one version of my current project. (I'm struggling to convince myself that I AM ALLOWED to revise later.) I've spent all day today working on it, and all evening redesigning a crucial piece. There's so much yet to do, but I'm learning so much.

Annnd I just realized I didn't post this earlier. Oops?

Art (Wonder Woman)

Jul. 19th, 2017 09:18 pm
goss: (Rainbow - Pencils)
[personal profile] goss
Title: Bulletproof
Artist: [personal profile] goss
Rating: G
Fandom: DCU, Wonder Woman (2017)
Characters/Pairings: Diana
Content Notes: This is a quick one, sketched with pencil. Don't have the time to do a proper watercolour painting job as yet. So in the mean time, I've added some digital tinting in Photoshop, as well as played around with the lighting. I actually like the results. ^___^

Created for the [community profile] drawesome Weekly Challenge #3: Song Lyric Prompt. Inspired by Titanium by David Guetta featuring Sia (Ricochet, you take your aim, fire away...).

Preview:


Click here for entire artwork )
copperbadge: (Default)
[personal profile] copperbadge
I am like….90% sure I’m going camping this Friday. 

It depends a bit on the weather, but I’m mostly packed, I’ve cooked food that’s currently waiting in the freezer, and I have acquired the third Diane Mott Davidson book to read. 

The plan is to leave work early, catch the train to the campground, camp overnight, and in the morning hike out to a different train station further down the line, about a seven-mile trek, to do a longer endurance test than last weekend’s. Then I’ll catch the train home around noon on Saturday.

If something goes wrong, I can catch an evening train home on Friday until eight o’clock, or starting in the morning at 5:30, with little to no exertion. It’s pretty low-risk and I’m well stocked. I don’t have a sleeping pad, but my backpack has a partial one built-in, and I have one arriving tomorrow (though it might be too bulky, we’ll see). And honestly in this heat, I might just sleep on top of my sleeping bag in any case. 

Worst case scenario, the campground has heated, lockable shower cubicles with nice big floors. I’ve slept on worse. 

Caaaaaaamping! *jazz hands*

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Bingo cards

Jul. 19th, 2017 02:14 pm
sholio: Text: "Age shall not weary her, nor custom stale her infinite squee" (Infinite Squee)
[personal profile] sholio
I actually managed to finish a line on my genprompt-bingo card doing SSR Confidential - I just picked a line and used the prompts in it for inspiration for the various treats I wrote. It worked well. XD I haven't decided if I'm going to go for something more advanced on that card or just post it ...

Anyway, here are all my current cards: my newest h/c bingo one (one square down so far!), genprompt-bingo, trope bingo, and tic-tac-woe (apocalypses).

Cards under the cut )

Note to self: do not sign up for any more bingo cards.

Color-coded versions for prompt picking coming soon ...

The episodes that never were

Jul. 18th, 2017 08:12 pm
resonant: Brian from The Breakfast Club: Demented and sad, but social (Default)
[personal profile] resonant
[personal profile] lunabee34 says: "Tell me about the episode (or book chapter) that never appeared in one of your fandoms but should have."

Star Trek TNG: "The Price" is such a god-awful episode that when it leaves those two Ferengi in their shuttlecraft stranded in the Delta Quadrant and doesn't bother to tell us what became of them, that's not even the worst of its crimes. (The worst of its crimes is probably what Crusher and Troi wear to do aerobics.) Anyhow, yes, the Ferengi were acting like jerks, but they didn't deserve to die the kind of death that you'd die stranded in a shuttlecraft 30,000 light-years from home. I think either they should reappear as part of the Borg collective, or the Voyager crew should find them.

Due South: More Ray&Ray. Doesn't everyone want more Ray&Ray? Make RayK go to meet a new informant and discover that it's the Bookman.

The Princess Bride 2: the story of how Buttercup wound up being the Dread Pirate Roberts.

Gratitudes

Jul. 18th, 2017 08:01 pm
kass: glasses of pink wine (rose)
[personal profile] kass
1. Beautiful summer skies.

2. A glass of pink wine. (See icon.)

3. Lunch with someone I dearly love. \o/!

4. The entertainment value of watching my son play his first game of Magic: the Gathering today.

5. The prospect of an evening of Great British Bake-Off with [personal profile] sanj once I put Mr. Kid to bed, huzzah.
resonant: Brian from The Breakfast Club: Demented and sad, but social (Default)
[personal profile] resonant
- There's a group of people who detest it on principle. Asked to define it, they create a definition that basically sorts everything into two categories: Things I Hate, Which Therefore Belong To the Genre I Hate, and Things I Like, Which Obviously Do Not Belong To the Genre I Hate. (Ask a classic rock fan who hates country about Crosby, Stills, & Nash. Or a classic sci-fi fan who hates fantasy about Pern.)

- Traditionally, about a third of it was worthless due to sentimentality.

- More recently, another third of it is worthless because capitalism endlessly churns it out in identical shiny plastic pieces.

- When it's bad, there's nothing worse.

- When it's good, it captures the human spirit so well that it brings tears to your eyes.

(no subject)

Jul. 17th, 2017 01:01 pm
nestra: (Default)
[personal profile] nestra
DS9 rewatch:

"Looking for Par'Mach in All the Wrong Places"

Julian is really invested in the state of O'Brien's marriage, to the point of eavesdropping. That's weird, Julian. As is the idea that Kira is now some kind of pseudo-wife, because she's carrying the baby. We're supposed to be concerned that they're developing feelings for each other, but the complete lack of chemistry torpedoes that. (Poor Keiko. She does not have much to do in this episode.)

Ah, Quark's Klingon ex-wife returns. Not really a storyline I needed follow-up to, but I suppose it's interesting, given the hostilities between the Klingons and the Federation. Or, it's interesting for about 10 seconds, and then the rest of the episode is Worf playing Cyrano for Quark, in between moaning about Klingon opera and Klingon mating traditions.

I guess it accomplishes the main goal, which is getting Worf and Dax together.

"...Nor the Battle to the Strong"

It's a good idea to pair Jake with Bashir in a situation where Bashir is practicing medicine on the front lines. Julian was kind of the baby of the adults when the show started, idealistic about "frontier medicine". Now he's aged into some maturity, while Jake is 18 and still learning how to be an adult. One minute he's fantasizing about something terrible happening so he can write an interesting article, and the next minute he has to confront the reality of that situation.

I am circling back to my theme of DS9 being a show where sometimes, there are no good answers. Bashir's decision to go help means putting Jake in mortal danger. Jake judges a man for injuring himself to get out of battle, but then Jake does something equally as bad, if not worse. These are the wages of war.

The episode title is from the Bible. The verse says that sometimes the fastest person doesn't win a race, or the strongest person win a battle. Sometimes it's just chance, and there's nothing you can do about it.
heresluck: (book)
[personal profile] heresluck
Tracy K. Smith is fast becoming one of my all-time favorite poets. Finding two new poems in this month's Nation was a gift.

The United States Welcomes You

Why and by whose power were you sent?
What do you see that you may wish to steal?
Why all this dancing? Why do your dark bodies
Drink up the light? What are you demanding
That we feel? Have you stolen something? Then
What is that leaping in your chest? What is
The nature of your mission? Do you seek
To offer a confession? Have you anything to do
With others brought by us to harm? Then
Why are you afraid? And why do you invade
Our night, hands raised, eyes wide, and mute
As ghosts? Is there something you wish to confess?
Is this some enigmatic type of test? What if we
Fail? How and to whom do we address our appeal?


— Tracy K. Smith
in The Nation, July 17/24 2017

(no subject)

Jul. 17th, 2017 07:52 am
lakeeffectgirl: (Default)
[personal profile] lakeeffectgirl
This August, [personal profile] rsadelle and I are finally going to power through that 90's fan favorite: Once a Thief. Both of us purchased the DVD set when it was released, watched a few episodes, and never finished. (I'm sure we got distracted by other, more contemporary things? Possibly this was something I planned on finishing while I was on medical leave but then I just watched all of Futurama and half of Arrow instead. Speaking of: I need to finish Arrow one of these days, too.) Anyway, if you'd like to join us in watching Ivan Sergei be confused, Sandrine Holt by annoyed, and Nick Lea be grumpy, here's a tumblr post with details and a sign-up link.

So far no one has signed up but us buuuuuuuuuuuuut I remain optimistic.

Currently I'm watching Daredevil (the show) because I keep thinking that I want to write Matt/Foggy one of these days (or Matt/Foggy/Karen!), so I need to wrap that up before this OaT extravaganza starts.

Went to see Spiderman: Homecoming yesterday and it was delightful. I remain baffled by how much Tom Holland (still?) looks like Jamie Bell.

(no subject)

Jul. 17th, 2017 08:48 am
copperbadge: (radiofreemondaaay)
[personal profile] copperbadge
Good morning everyone, and welcome to Radio Free Monday!

Ways to Give:

[tumblr.com profile] readera's partner, J, has been in the ER multiple times in the past three months, and their finances are very strained because of it. They're raising $300-$500 for transportation costs and medicine; you can read more and reblog here or give directly here.

[tumblr.com profile] sleepyheathen needs to make next month's rent and is selling items, offering commissions, accepting donations, and has an Amazon wishlist up. You can read more, purchase, or reblog here, or donate via paypal here.

[tumblr.com profile] tony-in-distress is trying to escape an abusive situation and hoping to take her siblings with her. She needs to raise enough money for a deposit on a safe house for her and her siblings to live in. You can read more and help out here.

Anon is raising funds to help a friend cover debt and pay for legal bills after her abusive husband took custody of their youngest son. You can read more and give here; unfortunately due to Australian law apparently they can't provide much information.

Sarah Sadat had to leave her job recently due to stress and is facing mounting medical bills for a failing kidney and previous hospitalization; she has surgery scheduled for next month, and is fundraising to help cover medical and other bills. You can read more and give to the fundraiser here.

[tumblr.com profile] ohstephyy was let go from a job three months ago and hasn't been able to get another one; there are also other costs coming up to cover. You can read more and reblog here; a paypal address is available at the post.

[personal profile] laurashapiro linked to a fundraiser for [personal profile] kuwdora, a talented vidder who is trying to become a professional editor. She has an opportunity for professional coaching from the editor of Burn Notice and Empire, but can't afford the expenses on her own. You can read more and help out here.

Anon linked to [tumblr.com profile] tiarasnteakettles who is looking for work as a harpist, including attempting to purchase a harp that would be a massive upgrade from her current instrument and allow her more freedom in performance. You can read more about her situation and reblog here, including links to her Patreon and online store and Paypal donation address.

[tumblr.com profile] rilee16 is struggling to cover medical expenses after two head injuries last year, and has a fundraiser running to cover living expenses, previous medical bills, and a recent rent increase. You can read more and help out here.

News To Know:

Anon linked to [tumblr.com profile] wanderlust-anthology, an upcoming anthology of reimagined myths, legends, and folklore based on the theme Quests and Journeys. They are looking for creators for this anthology, which will be a full-color printed book with stories, comics, and artwork. You can read more at their tumblr or at the FAQ here; sign-ups close July 30th.

Housing:

Riel is looking for a roommate in Austin, TX to share a townhouse; she and the other roommate (male) are both grad students, and they do have a cat. Riel is very fandom-friendly. Lease starts in August. You can check out the townhouse here and get in touch at ariellayendler at gmail.com.

And this has been Radio Free Monday! Thank you for your time. You can post items for my attention at the Radio Free Monday submissions form. If you're not sure how to proceed, here is a little more about what I do and how you can help (or ask for help!). If you're new to fundraising, you may want to check out my guide to fundraising here.

This week in writing, 7/16

Jul. 17th, 2017 01:39 am
dira: Bucky Barnes/The Winter Soldier (Default)
[personal profile] dira
Still not great, but better than last week! 

WIPs currently active: 5

Words written this week: 3,259

WIPs that got no words this week: 0

WIPs that did get words this week:

Codename: Aluminum Bastard (aka broken dick epic): 104, still inching along. I probably just need to hit a scene break soon, but then I’m going to have to figure out what happens next, so…?

Born in the Blood: 821, and it is distinctly possible that every one of them is terrible, but I haven’t figured out how to make them less terrible so for now I’m just going with it.

Dragon!Bucky/tribute!Steve and Learning to Be a Good Citizen: 490, including realizing that I needed to insert an entire chapter before where I initially started writing. 

All Eternals Deck #2: 598, possibly all getting deleted when I redo the beginning because i figured out that I was doing it wrong…

Slavefic #6: 1,246, DIRELY in need of a POV change. Soon. Yes. 

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[personal profile] goss
  1. Google No - DuckDuckGo

    So I saw via Tumblr this week that Google did this sneaky thing where they have quietly dropped the ban on personally identifiable web tracking. Meaning: Until now, Google collected your data, but did not attach your name to it. Now, they can, and will. O_O

    There are helpful instructions at the link on how to opt out of this, which I went ahead and followed. Furthermore, I decided to make DuckDuckGo my default search engine, since its main feature is that it is a Non-Tracking search engine.

  2. Stay Motivated

    Here's an article (via [personal profile] umadoshi) on How to Stay Motivated in an era of stupidity, which is worth the read, especially as artists and creators in fandom. We could all benefit from reminding ourselves that the act of creating has merit and value to ourselves and each other, now more than ever.

  3. Art Challenges

    • Defenders Big Bang:
      Have to remember to get started on this one! Art is due on 1st August. I was holding out to read the author's completed story, but since I have an idea of what direction I want to go in from the initial draft, I think I'm going to go ahead and start on the artwork this week.

    • Weekly Challenge #3 - Song Lyric:
      This week's prompt at [community profile] drawesome is a Lyric from one of your favourite songs. I got Wonder Woman (2017) on my mind, and there are so many songs on my playlist that make me think of her bravery, strength of character, and general awesomeness. I am fangirling that movie SO HARD, so this is the perfect incentive to do a bit of WW fanart.
    copperbadge: (Default)
    [personal profile] copperbadge
    A mango mixed jelly freeze from Chinatown is the best decision I have made all week.

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    You dropped a bomb on me

    Jul. 13th, 2017 10:14 pm
    gwyn: (middleman german film)
    [personal profile] gwyn
    ::glares at [personal profile] kore for getting Gap Band stuck in my head::

    What a weird day today. It started by getting up earlier than I would like, especially since I couldn't sleep last night, to talk to the people who help me out with the ginormous garden that I can no longer manage by myself. Then I had to go off to an appointment with the genetic counseling specialists, who were going to do an intake evaluation before setting up an appointment with the doctor later. I thought it was just going to be me answering questions about my history (my repetitive answer: I don't know, because outside of questions about my sister, I have no idea what my family history is as I'm adopted) but it turned out to involve all this strange stuff.

    First they asked me questions and the nurse doing the interview was…odd and not a very effective communicator, and then they told me I'd have to do another blood draw and I was very unhappy about that, because one of the reasons I'd gone in for a blood draw after the CT scan was so they'd be able to run all these tests. It's nearly impossible to get a vein on me and I just finally got rid of the awful bruises from the last one and the CT scan and I'm really sick of them, and she didn't seem to understand it well but there was an alternative that involved spitting a lot, or at least she seemed to think so. We agreed to that (like, I had to tell her three times that yes, I would prefer that test), and then they make you watch this little video from the genetic testing company, and then call the number on the phone there where you'll talk to yet another person about the same sorts of questions.

    I was supposed to meet up with someone afterward, and when I finished watching the video I had to send them email saying I wouldn't be there at the appointed time--which, ha ha, turned out to be unnecessary because the little video tablet was an hour off; I'd seen 3:08 and wondered how the hell it had been over an hour when it turned out it had only been about 40 minutes. It's…annoying to have to keep explaining my situation over and over, and then listen to the obligatory sympathy. It's not that I don't appreciate their kind wishes and their condolences about my sister, I do, I really do. It's just that, I don't know, I thought all this paperwork was going through and instead they were asking me why I was there/calling, as though this was satisfying curiosity on my part or something. I had to keep explaining that the surgeon wanted to see if I had genetic markers for ovarian cancer so we could determine what, if anything, should be done while I'm in surgery for the tumor removal.

    Anyway, after a lot of fumbling and confusion, they brought me this little kit, and I had to spit into this funnel to a certain line, and then mix it with some kind of liquid. It…is really, really hard to generate that much spit in a short amount of time. So, lesson for using it as lube in slash stories--unless your human is super drooly, they're probably not going to be able to do that (and spit is terrible lube anyway).

    She didn't seem to know what she was doing, and so I'm not confident about this, but it goes off to their lab and then supposedly they call me and we move forward. I kept asking about insurance, and no one would really talk to me about it--they said that once they call me, I can decide to go forward or not, but if insurance won't cover this, I know it's very expensive and it's not something I can really think about, considering the costs I'll incur from major surgery. But it was frustrating, because no one was committing to what had to be done re: insurance, and how I find out whether this is covered or not. Since my insurance company is weaseling out of the ACA exchange next year, I have this terrible feeling they'll be a lot less willing to approve things for those of us who get our insurance that way, because they're evil sons of bitches and should all die in a fire.

    So I finally got out of there with very dry mouth, and traffic both ways had been kinda hellacious so my back was really screaming a lot, but I couldn't meet up with my friends, and just went home. I'm trying to get rid of stuff lately, purging a lot of things, and I had this very expensive thing up on Craigslist for a good price, and this woman kept jerking me around about coming to see it, but finally she showed up at 8 and then proceeded to push me into a corner on the price and I felt just tired and bad enough that I went, fine, whatever. I took an instant dislike of her, and she wanted to know about this nearby restaurant but I was thinking, ugh, go away, take the damn thing and stop talking to me about how cute my neighborhood is and how you want to move to West Seattle and what a hard day you're having.

    All I could think was "bitch, I have cancer" and that made me want to laugh. So that's my new mantra, and I'm combining it with something a friend told me to do, which is start making a list of, like, all the dog breeds you can name in your head when people are talking about things you don't want to hear, which they are doing A LOT of lately. I'd forgotten, since it's been a while, how much everyone loves to tell you what to think/feel/do when you get sick.

    gratitude and a great salad

    Jul. 13th, 2017 10:02 pm
    cofax7: Iroh eating noodles (ATLA - Iroh)
    [personal profile] cofax7
    I really need to work on gratitude.

    1. New medication for the dog, which means she no longer pees in her sleep. (Yes, it's a thing.)

    2. Talking my oldest niece into reading the Montmaray novels. Which I then re-read over the weekend, and yes, I cried at that one point. (Oh, Carlos.)

    3. Finally getting through to the VA about Dad's life insurance policy.

    4. Making my awesome "Oceanside salad" and eating two bowls of it for dinner. [recipe below]

    5. Borrowing ebooks from the local library.

    *

    Oceanside salad )

    In other news, I really enjoyed the final Raksura novel by Martha Wells, enough to want to reread them all, except the last Court of Fives novel by Kate Elliott is coming out soon, so I want to reread all of those, but I really shouldn't.

    Also, the Narnia fic exchange is up for signups this week, and I cannot decide...

    (no subject)

    Jul. 13th, 2017 02:10 pm
    nestra: (Garak)
    [personal profile] nestra
    DS9 rewatch:

    "The Ship"

    O'Brien is spending a lot of time talking to a Starfleet guy we've never met before. I bet he's going to have a great time in this episode and not die tragically or anything. (Also, in an attempt to give them dialogue showing that they're friends! pals! totally met before today!, the writers kind of slide over into flirty. It's odd.)

    Also odd, guy who is certainly doomed is apparently Hispanic, just so he can call out to his Papa and mutter in Spanish while he's dying.

    The actress playing the female Vorta does a good job with making her attempt at manipulation completely transparent, but still subtle. It's a good episode that's more about the cost of war than any of the actual things at stake.
    rachelmanija: (Book Fix)
    [personal profile] rachelmanija
    I have obtained this from a free library (one of those little birdhouse things in my neighborhood.) It's a collection of short stories.

    I love Stephen King but not his propensity for grossouts or body horror. In fact, I shied off his short stories after reading two Ultimate Body Horror Grossout stories, "The Cat From Hell" and that goddamn story about the surgeon stranded on a desert island UGH UGH UGH.

    Given that, which of these should I read, and which should I avoid? I'm OK with scary and with violence that isn't revoltingly graphic.

    Dolan's cadillac
    The end of the whole mess
    Suffer the little children
    The night flier
    Popsy
    It grows on you
    Chattery teeth
    Dedication
    The moving finger
    Sneakers
    You know they got a hell of a band
    Home delivery
    Rainy season
    My pretty pony
    Sorry, right number
    The ten o'clock people
    Crouch end
    The house on Maple Street
    The fifth quarter
    The doctor's case
    Umney's last chance
    Head down
    Brooklyn August.
    fox: cartoon drawing of oven with single bun in it (bun in the oven)
    [personal profile] fox
    Ten days ago (is that all?!), I wrote of the prince, Yeah, no, the first night he ate sweet potatoes he woke up at 11 and at 3. Last night he woke up at 10:30 (when I had only been asleep for maybe 20 minutes; Himself had to get out of bed and come stand next to my side to wake me, because shaking me from his side of the bed wasn't doing it; it was pretty startling) and 2:30, and I'll grant he had sweet potatoes at dinner, but he's had sweet potatoes lots of times. I'm pretty sure in fact what that previous two-wakeup night and last night had in common that no two other nights in his life have had is this: In each case, the previous two nights we'd given him children's Benadryl in the hope that it would ease up his congestion while he slept. It's the only thing his doctor said we could give him other than baby Tylenol. So now I think we have learned a thing: 2.5 mL of children's Benadryl will in fact knock out an 18-lb infant for 11 or 12 hours (in fact it will turn him to a rag doll in less time than it takes him to nurse to sleep) - but the come-down is a bitch.
    copperbadge: (Default)
    [personal profile] copperbadge
    My parents signed me up for Nextdoor, which is like some kind of community-based mini facebook, and I am signed up in their neighborhood, which is (as we have established) The Boondocks.

    I don’t mind belonging to their Nextdoor, it means that I will be kept abreast of local news, but also the local news is hilarious. 

    The latest messages concern a HEATED DISCUSSION about hoof trimming because someone posted asking if anyone knows a farrier who will trim miniature horse hooves, which apparently most farriers have some kind of BASELESS PREJUDICE against according to this poster. Battle lines are quickly being drawn between the various camps including:

    Miniature horses don’t need hoof maintenance the way regular horses do
    Miniature horses ABSOLUTELY need hoof maintenance you monsters
    Farriers who won’t do miniature horse hooves ain’t shit
    Farriers who won’t do miniature horse hooves have their reasons
    Miniature horses are some bullshit
    Everybody shut up about miniature horses
    I Have A Miniature Horse For Sale

    I can’t wait to see who wins. I suspect it will be me. 

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    What I'm Doing Wednesday

    Jul. 12th, 2017 07:52 pm
    sage: xkcd: crop of standing male stick figure facing a seated cat and exclaiming, "You're a kitty!" (joy: kitty)
    [personal profile] sage
    books Christie, Arendt )

    yard kitty
    A lovely white cat with dark tabby splotches has begun hanging out in my backyard. It (she?) flees every time I open the back door, but I've taken to keeping a bowl of water and a pile of catnip out there for her. I'm not providing food, as I have no desire to feed the wildlife (evil freaking raccoons, gah), but I like giving her a safe, shady place to get a drink and some nip in the 100F heat.

    yarning
    I've made some excellent progress on the current epic project. Last night as I was trying to fall asleep, I had a brainstorm that resolved the shaping difficulties of the part I was working on, so this morning I started the section over, and oh look, problem solved. There's still a fair bit to go, but maybe it'll be ready to show soonish.

    healthcrap
    There is a lot tbh, and I've been pretty under the weather. I am more than the sum of my healthcrap, though. That's the important thing.
    heresluck: (bell pepper)
    [personal profile] heresluck
    I have made both these recipes in the last couple of days, and because those of us in the northern hemisphere are heading into the part of the summer where the prospect of pulling a cold noodle salad out of the fridge is particularly appealing, I figured I might as well share. You can eat either of these salads at room temperature right after making them, but part of the point of them is that they make spectacularly good leftovers straight out of the fridge.

    Both sauces are meant to dress about 1 lb of noodles, because I think of these as noodle dishes with other things in them. If you are one of those people who distrust carbs and want the dishes to be more salad-y, cut the quantity of noodles in half and pile on the veggies. For what it's worth, I think both dishes are best with just two or three additions, both because it makes prep simpler and because it keeps the flavors cleaner, but obviously YMMV.

    Cold Sesame Noodles )

    Cold Wasabi Noodles )

    (no subject)

    Jul. 12th, 2017 03:02 pm
    nestra: (Default)
    [personal profile] nestra
    DS9 rewatch:

    Season five! Thankfully starting with a recap of season 4, because it's been a while.

    "Apocalypse Rising"

    I love Kira's maternity outfit.

    Plot of this episode: let's go steal an empire. And their plan is a little shaky, to be honest. And requires the help of Dukat. Poor Damar tries to be the voice of reason. Don't hold your breath, Damar.

    OMG, Odo makes a hilariously bad Klingon. Avery Brooks digs into it as deeply as possible. Like, you can see the dirt flying as he works those bad teeth and that wig. Frankly, it seems like it would be exhausting to impersonate a Klingon for any longer than 5 minutes.

    A decent, if not thrilling, season opener.

    Fic: Best Toy Ever

    Jul. 12th, 2017 10:19 am
    philomytha: girl in woods with a shaft of sunlight falling on her (Default)
    [personal profile] philomytha
    I wrote something! Looking at AO3, this is the first non-exchange fic I've posted since November 2014. And with all those bingo cards, instead I write a fic that has nothing to do with any of the prompts and is instead entirely the fault of both of my boys. But hey, I wrote something, even if it is fluffy silliness about a broken toy :-D

    Title: Best Toy Ever
    Summary: "ImpSec is my ... intelligence utility." - Miles, in Diplomatic Immunity.
    Five-year-old Miles makes use of some ImpSec assets.

    Best Toy Ever )
    copperbadge: (Default)
    [personal profile] copperbadge
    I just got home and the apartment REEKS of burnt toast. Which is weird since a) nothing is on fire (I checked), b) I haven’t even MADE toast in like a week, c) it didn’t smell like that this morning when I got home from running, and d) the smell is most intense when standing on my welcome mat just inside the door. 

    I think Ghost is mad at me. They often express themselves with smells near the doorway. But I haven’t even done anything! The designated Ghost Drawer in the card catalogue shelf (under G, for Ghost) is open and everything, I checked. 

    I cannot order you a pizza tonight, Ghost, I already have grocery delivery coming and I don’t want the Domino’s guy and the Peapod guy to make it awkward. We’ll have pizza on Thursday. 

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    (no subject)

    Jul. 11th, 2017 05:02 pm
    synecdochic: torso of a man wearing jeans, hands bound with belt (Default)
    [personal profile] synecdochic
    holy shit

    Last night I was like, nah, you're seeing things, wishful thinking, etc, but after treatment #2? The cords really ARE shrinking, dramatically so.

    "Stops progressing" would have been a good outcome. Actual reversal happens in a minority of cases, almost always in patients who treat it very early. I'm SO FUCKING GLAD I insisted on going as aggressive as possible. Even if I wind up with more chronic pain out of it, I'll keep use of my hands for a fuck of a lot longer, thank ANYTHING THAT WAS LISTENING

    vidding and other fannish matters

    Jul. 11th, 2017 10:28 am
    heresluck: (killjoys)
    [personal profile] heresluck
    1. I am vidding! Seriously vidding! For the first time in a while! ...I mean, I made a Festivid and also a vid for Club Vivid, but they almost didn't feel like vids because the source was so tiny that I hardly spent any time clipping, which -- look, I kind of hate clipping (what [personal profile] luminosity calls "the sous chef stuff"), because it can be so freaking boring, but apparently it's part of what makes vidding feel like vidding to me. Plus the sheer amount of time spent looking at the characters' adorable faces makes me feel even more attached to them, which it turns out is important, go figure.

    2. In related news, I have found the silver lining of the Mon-El storyline in Supergirl S2, which is that it makes clipping really easy because there are so many scenes I can just... skip.

    3. I've had more new vid ideas in the last month than in the past couple of years combined. This is delightful, if not precisely convenient. It's partly a side effect of getting obsessed with a new album and doing that thing I used to do all the time where I want to VID ALL THE SONGS, as I once did with Tegan & Sara, Remy Zero, etc. (I am not going to vid all the songs. I might vid two of them, though; see above re: T&S and RZ.)

    4. I did an awesome job of future-proofing this vidding machine, if I do say so myself.

    5. My love for the Magic Bullet color plugins for Premiere (especially Colorista, but also Mojo) cannot be textually rendered.

    6. I am finally catching up on Sense8 S2 and it is making me SO HAPPY. I have missed them all! And their adorable faces! And Lito's histrionics! And Sun's everything!

    7. I am also catching up on Empire S3, and wow, I don't know when I am going to get around to this Cookie vid, which has been pre-empted by these new ideas, but when I do, it is going to be EPIC. At least for me. Maybe not for you! But hopefully for you too, because COOKIE.

    8. Killjoys S3 has started! How did I not know about this? I was almost caught up on TV and now I am behind AGAIN.

    9. ...as problems go, I could do worse. (DUTCH!!!)

    (no subject)

    Jul. 11th, 2017 01:25 am
    synecdochic: torso of a man wearing jeans, hands bound with belt (Default)
    [personal profile] synecdochic
    First dose of radiation done, out of five (once per day this week). Aside from 20 minutes of "shitting cockgoblin fuckmuppet" pain levels just now, which did die down to just a slightly elevated from normal "ow ow ow ow ow", it was fairly uneventful! Holding the position required for the treatment is worse than the actual treatment, which is basically "the machine goes click whirr for 45 seconds".

    So curious to see what happens in six weeks. The way this works, you see, is by activating all the dormant spots so the second round can nuke them in 12 weeks...

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