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Yuletide finished and uploaded! Didn't hit 10k, but still more words than usual. Would have finished it last weekend except there was an emergency with a Sugar Plump Fairy in need of a wand that necessitated going through papers from 20 years ago. Yes. Anywho, yay, done!

Yuletide Started!

I did 1.3k words today! A whole month before the thing is even due! This is literally unprecedented! It's just the first scene done so far, but yay! If I can keep this up, I might get a 10k story out of my Yuletide!!! AMBITION~! We'll see...

In other word-writing news, a friend wants to write a book so I am writing one, too, in support. Hers is Victorian-era fantasy and mine is a space opera, but whatever.
Kiko Groove Time

Eurovision 2015

So, who's excited about Eurovision?!??! yeah, I know, not many in the U.S.

But, um, Australia is part of Eurovision this year. WTF? I mean, I thought Azerbaijan and Israel were stretching it, but yeah, um, Australia. That's AUSTRALIA, not AUSTRIA. Yeah.

I mean, the song is fun. And the video is cute. But Australia. (I'm totally secretly planning the bid for the U.S., but right now I'm just jelly.)

ANYWAY, my opinions!

Australia - I dig it
Albania - moody power diva pop, so not my thing (also, the video is creepy, with tons of emotionless women crying single perfect tears of who the fuck knows)
Austria - the song is OK (admittedly too slow for my groove), but the singer is totally hot (I guess I dig long-haired bearded dudes? whatevs)
Armenia - I like the visuals of the music video, but too many singers make me go O_o and the tempo feels weirdly off, and the weird minor shifts at the end are terrible
Azerbaijan - boy diva, not bad, but not my thing
Belarus - AWESOME! I love the violinist in the hourglass. LOVE IT. Hope this one goes far.
Belgium - FANTASTIC!!!! love the beat, fantastic lyrics, I hope this one WINS.
Cyprus - This is pretty good, and the guy's voice is very nice.
Czech Republic - co-ed duet power ballad (video is soooooo dramatical). meh
Denmark - the 50's-esque vibe is really fun, but at the same time this just feels very generic to me. I mean, it's pretty good, and I'd listen to it if it were on the radio, but I wouldn't buy it, yeah? (some oddly creepy lyrics, but I could just be overly sensitive)
Estonia - I like their sound. Very classy.
Finland - No. I'm a punk fan. But. No.
France - Lovely
Georgia - GIRL POWER, FUCK YEAH! Also, I'm pretty sure I've made MMO characters for every one of those ladies in the video. I want Xena: Warrior Princess videos to this song, just saying. I would cheer if this one won.
Greece - ugh, the kind of aspirating diva I hate (which often wins), ugh
Germany - Yes, I like. More please. I really like her stage presence, too. Her relaxed confidence really makes me think she's having fun doing her thing. This totally won't win, though.
Hungary - nice concept, little too boring for Eurovision
Italy - A strong song, but not my speed. Video is fun from all the romantic scenes from movies references, and the song gets points for being sung in Italian.
Iceland - Very nice, and the singer is totally hot. I looked her up and could find nothing about her, but her voice is nice.
Israel - Great song! Really fun, like the rhythms and the hip hop riffs. Flows really well. I could get behind this one to win.
Ireland - What's with all the slow, sad songs this year? It's OK, but, AGAIN, not my speed. (Also, she's the age of my students, weird.)
Latvia - THIS SONG IS AMAZING. HER VOICE IS AMAZING. If this doesn't at least make the Final I'll cry.
Lithuania - I like it. A happy, upbeat song!
Malta - Very very good song. I like it a lot.
F.Y.R. Macedonia - This is very good, too. I like it. :)
Montenegro - I can't decide if the video is a fashion show or a tourism commercial. Very smooth song with some nice beats.
Moldova - This is so 90's and I LOVE IT SO MUCH. For some reason, he reminds me of Britney Spears. This song (and the fantastically cheesy video and totally douchey lyrics) just makes me grin and giggle. I'm slightly ashamed.
The Neatherlands - It's a nice song.
Norway - At first I wasn't sure. But, yeah, I like this. Duet ballad, but. Actually good. Even though it's slow and has the swelling music shit I usually hate. It's saved by the weirdness.
Poland - Very solid song, lovely voice. I like that it appears to be both a love song, and about overcoming her disability.
Portugal - This singer just kills it. Her voice is superb! Love her stage presence and the song and yeah, everything. VERY good. (But I want her to REALLY belt the song out. It doesn't feel raw enough.)
Romania - GORGEOUS video, and a really nice break from all the standard love songs. Made me tear up a bit...
Russia - nice, but I feel really weird about the lyrical message with all the politics
San Marino - So cheesy, but I actually like it.
Serbia - yay diversity, gotta admit I like the video, silly lip-syncing and all
Slovenia - I really can't decide if I like it or not. Her voice is odd at points. Also, air-violinist, whut?
Spain - This video is HILARIOUS. The song isn't bad. But the video! OMG, were-tiger fanfic? I dunno.
Sweden - HOLY FUCK, this is INCREDIBLE! It's, like, totally a Firefly/Serenity filk song! And it's REALLY GOOD. I want it to win! OMG, this song, please, please, please! It's sooooooo good! This is my new theme song, FYI.
Switzerland - Not a bad song. I can groove to this in the car.
United Kingdom - HOLY SHIT, THE U.K. ACTUALLY HAS A GOOD SONG THIS YEAR!!?!?!! I really like it! I can actually root for the U.K.! Awesome.

Eurovision 2015 Playlist
Hello Kitty - Tasty Fandom

Dear Yuletide Author

Thank you so much for writing me a story! I've only participated in Yuletide once before (back in 2012), but I've been following it for years and really enjoyed the concept. I've also done other writing challenges, although not lately, I admit. I'm hoping to get back into writing and a challenge like this is a good place to start. I'm sure that no matter what you write, I'll enjoy it, because YAY, FANOM! :D

You can find me (and my extensive collection of fanfic bookmarks) on AO3 here.

General Stuff I Like:
1) I am a HUGE crossover fan. I started reading fanfic about 20 years ago and some of my earliest fanfic explorations were on the Gossamer Archive for The X-Files, where I basically read EVERYTHING in the crossover section. And that was a lot. Even if I had no clue about what the other fandoms were.
2) The trope that will make me read ANY story, no matter if it is poorly written or I don't even know the fandom, is the Time Loop. I'm also a ZOMG!HUGE fan of the Set Right What Once Went Wrong trope, a la Day Break, Quantum Leap, Early Edition, Seven Days, etc. Time travel stories where someone wakes up young again and has a chance to relive their life to fix [insert tragedy here] are like my fanfic kryptonite.
3) I adore Outsider POV that makes completely plausible theories over what is going on but the reader knows they're wrong and/or the Insider POV where the main character is keeping tons of secrets from everyone else in the story, especially identity-related secrets.
4) I'll read any pairing, although I do tend to gravitate towards slash. I also adore Gen fic.

General Stuff I Don't Like:
I'm hard to squick. I'm not a big fan of kidfic, but I'll read it and enjoy it if it's written well. Torture porn is a big turn-off, as is infantalization. My biggest turn-off in a fic is first person/present tense writing. I don't really know why, but I just can't stand reading it. I've read amazing summaries for fanfics or synopses for novels that I'm really excited about reading and I open the book and see it's in first person/present tense and I'll put it right back down.

Request 1: Brimstone
This show could have been so great! There are only 13 episodes and it was made in the 1990's, but don't let that stop you from checking it out if you've never heard of it! It's a show made for crossovers (Dogma, Supernatural, and Good Omens all come to mind...), but if that's not your thrill, I'll take anything in this highly underutilized fandom. I'd love to see how Detective Stone is doing after all these years... still plugging away at getting those 113 souls sent back to Hell? Still being tormented by the Devil? Was the Devil doppelganger in the last episode really an Angel/God, or was the Devil just playing a cruel trick on him? Did he ever manage to send Ash back?

Request 2: Island City
Wow, what to say about this TV Pilot that never got off the ground? I loved it, even though it is so, so bad. Some of the concepts in this movie were fantastic, with the dichotomy between those who refused treatment and those who took the youth drug that mutated most of the population, the crystal implants that control who you may and may not have a sexual relationship with, the clones (I'm a fan of the Greg series, as Greg 23 is my favorite, of course), all of that fancy technology inside of the city in contrast to the wasteland outside of the city, etc. Really, I just want to explore this world more. A world-building story or an adventure tale or whatever would be awesome. Original characters are fine, too!

Request 3: Earth: Final Conflict
My dad called this "that mime show" back in the day, but I loved it. Boone is fine, but I was always much more fond of Kincaid, especially since he had the whole secretly-and-alien-hybrid thing going for his, with the cool Shaquarava energy hands. I would love a story exploring more about Ronald Sandoval and his unknowing father/son relationship with his co-worker/secret-enemy-but-maybe-we're-sort-of-on-the-same-side? Liam Kincaid. Their dynamic continually delighted me on the show. I'm also a fan of Augur and his relationship to Liam (either romantic or paternal).

Request 4: The Pretender
One of the very few shows I actually bought the DVDs for!!! I love and adore every character on this show (well, except for the creepy ones, and I include Sydney as one of the creepy ones because, well, seriously...). It is a show MADE for crossovers. I'm a big fan of the early-series Jarod with all of his innocent wonder at the outside world, but the latter, darker stuff was also fantastic. Broots is awesome. Angelo is awesome. Miss Parker is awesome ice cream on an awesome cake. I'd love to see Jarod still going strong, avenging the innocent and righting wrongs, fighting the Centre and flirting with Miss Parker. If you want to write a crossover, seriously, anything would be lovely -- Jarod can slip into any context, that's his superpower! So cool! I really love this show. :D

Request 5: The Last Detective
DANGEROUS DESERVES A HAPPY ENDING!!! No, seriously, I love DC Davies. He's sweet and caring and became a police officer to help people and sure he's not exciting, but he believes in justice and OMG, Julie, why did you dump him, you idiot?! Sorry. Ahem. Dangerous needs a happy ending. DI Aspinall was starting to see his value and even the other detectives were grudgingly starting to respect him again. I want him blissfully happy and having lots of sex (Ray, Mod, even Julie, I don't care) and still doing the work he used to love and now is starting to love again.

Request 6: Cable and Deadpool
I'm a huge comic book nerd. And while usually I'm not a big fan of bad guys, there's just something about Deadpool. Go wild. (PS: I loved the Loki-is-Deadpool's-father storyline in the first ongoing title. I also love Blind Al and her dating Captain America back before he was frozen and her ties to British intelligence... I'm also fond of Weasel.)
alone on a swing

Jesting Pilate by Aldous Huxley

Of the fact that it takes all sorts to make a world I have been aware ever since I could read. But proverbs are always commonplaces until you have personally experienced the truth of them. The newly arrested thief knows that honesty is the best policy with an intensity of conviction which the rest of us can never experience. And to realize that it takes all sorts to make a world one must have seen a certain number of the sorts with one's own eyes. Having seen them and having in this way acquired an intimate realization of the truth of the proverb, one finds it hard to go on complacently believing that one's own opinions, one's own way of life are alone rational and right. This conviction of man's diversity must find its moral expression in the practice of the completest possible tolerance.
Queen of Fans

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I was thinking of going to the park today, but it was all cloudy with intermittent drizzle. I found a nicely-stocked drugstore nearby today which also had a small grocery section, though. Still have not managed to buy another pillow or a clothesline. But! I got a strainer! And eggs. Which I am going to carefully empty. And dye their shells, a la pysanky. Oh, and eat their innards, of course.

I still don't know what I should write. My brain seems empty of ideas. All I know is that I want to write something, and that I do it best with a deadline (so bummed that I missed Yuletide signups, sigh). I am, however, going to be recommending Miles Vorkosigan fic for crack_van in November, so if anyone who reads this has any fic I should take a look at before my term is up, hook me up. I should probably try to get the majority of my recs in by November 18th, as that is when Helm's Deep comes out and I'll probably be spending an entirely obsessive amount of my time off playing LOTRO after that.

PS: This is the best thing since sliced bread! Seriously. It's a fanmade Supernatural movie with awesome writing and acting and direction, with great special effects to boot! I adore it. I cannot recommend it highly enough. It's only 30 minutes, so go take a gander!

(no subject)

Bah. I apparently missed being able to sign up for Yuletide while I was moving. Boo. I had plans to do it, too! Ah well. I'll have to write something, though, for the Accountability Club. I'm thinking another Elementary fanfic. :)

Today I bought essential New Apartment stuff. Like cute doily drink coasters. And a wallet. (Don't judge me, I'll get pillows and a clothesline eventually!)
count your sheep

I'm old in fandom years.

Yesterday, I was cleaning up my closet a bit and decided it was finally time to do something about The Folders of Fanfic. You see, I am old enough that I have paper fanzines and printouts of my favorite fanfics (of 15+ years ago). LOTS of print outs. I possibly killed a few trees there. About five huge 3-ring binders worth of fanfic, plus some dozen thin zines.

Good stuff, good stuff.


MUCH too storage-intensive. And I haven't taken them out to read in, oh, a decade. So, time to get rid of them! But first, I must search the internet for the stories, so I can turn them into e-books and put them on my Nook. Why yes, yes, I AM a dragon and cannot rid myself of anything, especially texts. And, of course, I've gotten caught up in re-reading (mostly skimming, but still) some of the old stuff and...

Wow. I'm old. Slash fanfic has CHANGED in the last 20 years! Good lord, the attitudes towards LGBT folks alone...!!! I'm reading these old stories and going, wow, cultural shift! Also, even the writing style, themes, and genres have mutated. I mean, yeah, if I take into account a post-9/11, post-financial crisis, age-of-social-media, legal-gay-marriage, repeal-of-DADT world, OF COURSE the stories will be different now.

It's also a bit humbling to me to realize that I've been reading fanfic for 20 years now. I mean, DAMN.
Flamebird - The Ultimate Groupie

I always find interesting bits of my past when deep-cleaning!

So, I was digging through piles of old notebooks from college (to find one relatively un-used), when I stumbled across one filled with old fanfic, original stories, and webcomic layouts (in between all of the notes... look, writing stories totally LOOKS like taking copious notes in boring classes, so, um, I did).

Among all that was... something cool that I'd completely forgotten about. I studied Human Factors Engineering Psychology in college, which is a subfield of both psychology and engineering concerned with designing anything and everything to fit with the dictates of human psychological and ergonomic functioning.

The cool thing I found was an essay I'd written about Harold, Batman's resident Human Factors genius. It's all about the psychology that went into the engineering of Batman's equipment in the comics, basically interpreting the text through the lens of a HF specialist.

I was am such a geek!
Be Noble - Donna from Doctor Who

Help me, fandom hive-mind!

Why are there so few stories where Donna Noble replaces Pepper Potts as Tony Stark's PA when Pepper gets promoted to CEO? I mean, seriously?

Also, I need someone to convince me not to write this.