otw_staff: Claudia, OTW Communications Co-Chair (Claudia)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news


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Rec request: Captain America

Nov. 22nd, 2014 20:06
wintercreek: A stack of books, the top one open. ([misc] addicted to the written word)
[personal profile] wintercreek
Cross-posting from my Tumblr:

Help, you guys, I have a sudden need for all the good, long Captain America fic. The only canon I know is the movies, and I still haven't seen CA:TWS (but come on, I've Tumblr-seen it at this point), but those are not limitations to recs. I've read fic in fandoms I've never even dipped a toe in, so reading fic that draws on comics canon is A-okay by me.

I just need more Steve. Steve/anyone, Steve by himself, Steve backstory, Steve futurestory. STEVE ROGERS being his lovely principled intelligent self and wrestling with living those principles in the messy, complicated world. Or just living his daily life, idk. STEEEEEEEEEVE.

owning up

Nov. 21st, 2014 19:59
inkstone: Michiko e Hatchin's Michiko from the opening credits (looking cool)
[personal profile] inkstone
Due to my massive writing binge during the summer and fall, I picked up some bad eating habits & stopped moving my body. Bad me, bad me. And I can definitely feel it in my body -- it's sluggish and stiff and slow and kinda bleargh.

So I'm going to start recording what I eat and my exercise here. I'll tag everything and put it behind a cut so you can scroll by, if you need to.

Since it's been several months of bad habits, I'm going to ease into it. I'm going to finish eating the packed food I have in the fridge and start off with the easy (for me) yoga DVD (Dance the Chakras), and then start in earnest on December 1.
otw_staff: Kiri, OTW Communications Co-Chair (Kiri)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news
Banner by Alice of a simple drawing of a human with a speech bubble containing a heart and a page of writing'
Fanworks shouldn't be a shaming matter & not only do more people know that, but they're speaking out about it too.
unjapanologist: (Default)
[personal profile] unjapanologist
Late announcement because I spent the last three weeks at a conference and then recovering my brain, but I successfully defended my PhD in Japanese Studies on October 27. YESSS DONE. I have a lot to say about what I found, where the research is going now, and where I'm going professionally, but for now I just want to point out where the stuff is.

In very short, the research describes the basics of how dojinshi (fan-made manga) are exchanged in Japan, and tries to think about what that system of exchange means for fans/companies/other stakeholders in the Japanese cultural economy. Although I went in with the aim of getting a degree in Japanese Studies, the research was conducted and written up with an audience of English-speaking fans and fan studies scholars in mind. I look at dojinshi exchange through two closely related lenses that others have also used to frame creation and exchange of "amateur" works - "hybrid economies" and "open source cultural goods". This led to a lot of food for thought, especially in relation to how fanworks are exchanged and sometimes monetized elsewhere, like on the English-speaking internet. More about the actual results in later posts.

Here's a more structured summary of the research in presentation format. Made for the defense, so it's still very condensed, but it has more details and pretty pictures.



(First and last time that I've ever used my uni's official boring template for a presentation. I wanted to do it just once.)

Secondly, you can get the full text of the thesis on http://www.nelenoppe.net/dojinshi/thesis, divided into the following chapters:

The thesis text linked to here is what I defended last month, but it isn't meant to be final. It's more of a snapshot of ongoing work. The text is on a wiki, so it can and will change as facts or interpretations evolve. (For instance, in a discussion about the accessibility of various dojinshi distribution channels for non-Japanese fans, I talk at some length about how Japanese dojinshi retailer Toranoana doesn't ship outside the country. But Toranoana has actually started shipping outside Japan now, so I'll have to change that bit soon.)

Because the text is likely to be modified and corrected a lot, I decided not to put a fixed PDF on the site. If you want a PDF, epub or odt version, you can have one generated on the fly from the latest up-to-date version of the wiki text. Everything is licensed CC-BY-SA, so please use it! More wiki talk soon, there will be much more on there as the giant thesis text is ummm reprocessed into more practical formats, for instance in Fanlore and Wikipedia articles.

Comments/corrections/critique/requests for info are extremely welcome. There's a comments section under every chapter, and the homepage of the wiki contains info about where else I can be reached. There's a lot of rough spots and holes in the research still, but at least I have over 100K actual finished written words to build on now. *beams*

I hope this will be a fun and useful read, especially for all the many fannish and academic friends who helped me out and cheered me on over the years. THANK YOU.

DA:I discussion/spoiler post!

Nov. 20th, 2014 18:02
lian: Klavier Gavin, golden boy (Default)
[personal profile] lian
Let's chat about DA:I as we go along! I'm installing the last disc as we speak :D

Who's your inquisitor? How far along are you? Pls put "spoiler up to XX" in your header and/or use spoiler cuts <cut> your spoiler here </cut>


ETA: I just came across this useful spoiler-free article: Tips For Playing Dragon Age: Inquisition. Mostly it's basic stuff but some of it is good to know going in! (Now back to fiddling with the character creator. Again. Hmph.)

ETA2: I have some lore questions below.


Courtesy of Sashatwen: very helpful subreddit for all your finicky questions (and moderated, too.)
otw_staff: Janita OTW Communications Staffer (Janita OTW Communications Staffer)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news
OTW Fannews Banner Women's Experiences in Fandom


Comic Book Resources reported on a NYCC panel about female fandom in which Kelly Sue DeConnick said, "'I think that there's an important thing to remember too, that what you're seeing now, the influx of female readership and female creators is not a revolution, it's a restoration...Back in the '30s and '40s there was a girls' magazine that had a distribution of 300,000 copies per month and it was comics... [In the decades since] women were discouraged, dissuaded, made unwelcome, and now for a plethora of reasons, women are returning...There are enough comics for everyone...Say it with me now: equality is not a loss.'"

PWP is a lie, part of a larger plot along with Mary Sues to make sure that women have a voice in fandom.

Can't believe I'm doing this

Nov. 18th, 2014 11:52
skud: (Default)
[personal profile] skud
Ehhh whatever, let's give this December meme a shot. Give me topics to post about in December (ETA: and pick a date for me to post them on). I can't 100% guarantee I'll do them promptly (there's a chance I might be taking an honest to god vacation for a few days sometime in there) but I'll do my best.

Some things you might want to ask me about, as hints:

* travel and living in other countries
* running events
* open source and related topics
* feminism and related topics
* moving to a smaller town
* domesticity/food/textiles
* life story/history
* favourite X

list of days )

Yuletide and other writing

Nov. 17th, 2014 18:04
naraht: (other-Yuletide squee)
[personal profile] naraht
November has been a wildly busy month for me, work-wise, so if I owe you an email it's because I've been mysteriously swamped in marketing (!) work. Sadly this hasn't been very conducive for Yuletide writing either. (Though I'm in the seasonal mood today because I woke up to snow on the ground!)

It's not that I haven't been writing, it's more that most of my ideas are long and I keep swapping between them. I have a fic that's 6k and nearly done, except for the fact that the narrative voice hasn't really gelled and so I'm still dissatisfied with the whole thing. I have another fic that's 5k and has some promise, but it's probably going to be 15k and I just haven't been working on it.

So I started a third fic, which has grabbed me, and I have 3k of that so far. But again it has the potential to be over 15k. I do see a natural endpoint but I also see a lot of middle. A lot. I don't seem to be able to write short any more. If I could write short I would be done by now.

I suspect that part of the problem is how ridiculously productive I was last year. I had grand plans about doing similar quantities of treating but at this point it looks like it's not going to happen - and I feel bad about that because I think people may be expecting it.

Still, I need to focus on writing my recipient one really good fic. Or two, or maybe three. If I manage that, I'll be very happy, and any treating which happens on top of that will be an extra bonus.

Oh, and I have managed to do a little bit of non-Yuletide writing. I added a second and final chapter to my sequel to In that dark womb. The new chapter contains a relatively detailed description of a first-trimester abortion - I say this both as a content note and as a point of discussion. It took me a long time to work my way up to writing it, but it needed writing as the logical conclusion of the premise I was pursuing and I'm pleased about having had the courage to try it.

OTW Fannews: What's a Fanwork?

Nov. 17th, 2014 10:58
otw_staff: Janita OTW Communications Staffer (Janita OTW Communications Staffer)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news
OTW Fannews Banner What's a Fanwork

Plays about fanfic , Rule 63 homages, tropes gone global & debates on who fits in what box—it’s still all fanwork to us: http://bit.ly/1HajmrM
skud: (Default)
[personal profile] skud
This is a crosspost from Infotropism. You can comment here or there.

I often hear that making an event more accessible, or even providing information about accessibility, is “too hard” for event organisers. I contest that.

I make basic efforts toward accessibility for almost every event I run, mostly in the form of documentation, and it’s not that time-consuming or difficult. I estimate I spend about 20 minutes on it for a small event at a new venue, and less than five minutes if we’re running a second or subsequent event at the same place. It’s hardly anything in the overall scheme of things.

Handy accessibility documentation checklist

  • Make a section on the event page titled “Accessibility”, and under that heading, note the physical access to the venue, including:
    • What floor is it on?
    • Is there an elevator to higher floors, or do you have to use stairs? Does the elevator require a key?
    • Do you need to go up or down steps anywhere between the entrance and the space where the action is taking place (eg. one step at the front door)?
    • Is there a separate accessible entrance? Where is it?
    • Is there rough ground to cover (eg. steep pathways, gravel)
    • Are there buttons to automatically open doors into the venue?
    • Is there a wheelchair-accessible toilet?
  • Also under “Accessibility”, make some notes about the style of the event and the content that will be delivered, with attention to how accessible it would be to hearing- or vision-impaired attendees, eg.
    • Will there be a speaker? Will the speaker’s words be transcribed/available in written form, such as handouts or slides?
    • Will materials be made available online, or minutes or proceedings posted, after the event?
    • Will any video or audio materials be transcribed or interpreted?
  • Also under “Accessibility”, mention any dietary needs, common allergies, or other health considerations:
    • If food is provided, what dietary requirements will be met automatically (eg. vegetarian, gluten free, and nut free)? If an attendee has other dietary requirements, who should they contact and by what date?
    • Especially if the event is a private home, are there any pets that people might have allergies to?
    • Are there any other materials that may cause allergic reactions or other health problems? Any environmental factors that may have health implications? Eg. fumes, noise, extreme heat, flashing strobe lights.
  • Provide an email/phone contact for any accessibility related enquiries not already covered by the above.
  • Under “Transportation”, note ways of getting to the venue, including:
    • Car parking – distance from venue, costs
    • Bicycle parking – indoor/outdoor, secure?
    • Public transportation – nearest routes/stops, time of first/last service
    • Ride sharing – especially for areas with poor public transport coverage, are there arrangements for people to share rides? Where should someone ask to find a ride, or offer a ride? (eg. Facebook group)
  • Under “Children”, note the following:
    • Is the event suitable for children? (Eg. mention if it will be unsafe)
    • Is there childcare provided?
    • Are there facilities for baby changing, feeding, etc?

Here’s a sample for an event I recently attended, based on my recollection of the venue and proceedings, and a little bit of online research:

Accessibility

Physical accessibility: The workshop will be held on a rural property. Part of the workshop will be held up a steep and narrow flight of stairs. The rest of the workshop will be held around the property, with rough ground and unfinished paths between different areas. Access to the toilet is via a rough path and a few stairs. This event is not suitable for people with wheelchairs/scooters and may not be suitable for others with mobility impairments.

Workshop content: The morning speaker will provide written/illustrated notes covering most of the workshop material. No other transcription/interpretation is planned.

Allergies: Due to the nature of the workshop and the ourdoor venue, people with seasonal or animal allergies may wish to medicate accordingly.

If you have other accessibility needs or inquiries, feel free to email (email address).

Transport

There is ample car and bike parking onsite.

There is no public transport to the venue.

Ride shares can be arranged via our Facebook group (link); please post there if you are able to offer a ride, or are looking for one.

Children

For safety reasons, this event is not suitable for young children; older children/teens may attend under the supervision of an adult. No childcare will be provided.

Babies may be changed in the bathroom at the main venue. Refrigeration/heating for baby food are available in the kitchen.

I timed it; that took me 25 minutes to research and write, and I was eating dinner and watching TV at the same time.

For future events at the same venue, simply copy-paste and make changes as necessary. It should take less than 5 minutes.

You may think that this hardly counts as “making your event accessible”, since so much of it is simply stating the lack of accessiblity, but even that much information is such a huge step above what most events provide that people will thank you for it.

Besides, awareness is most of the battle. Once you get in the habit of thinking about these things for every event, you’ll start to notice if you’re excluding people from attending. You might not have intended to exclude them, and done it without thinking; that’s pretty common, and most of us start out there. Now you’ll be more conscious of it, and you can begin to think about what further steps you could take.

At the very least, you’ll have saved a potential attendee from having to email a stranger (or worse, post on a public forum), disclosing a bunch of personal information just to find out whether they can attend or not.

Here are some examples of other events that provide accessiblity information:

  • AdaCamp Bangalore — this is an event I’m organising remotely, at a venue I’ve never seen, in another country. I still managed to provide this information without too much difficulty, by sending a list of questions to someone local and having them walk through the space.
  • Wiscon is a science fiction convention held in the same hotel year after year. They have managed to build up an amazing set of accessibility resources over the years.

And a few quick “don’ts”:

  • Don’t make people email you with any/all accessibility requests; it puts the onus on them, rather than you, and can invade their privacy. Take the effort to answer the most likely questions ahead of time.
  • Don’t hide the venue’s location from attendees unless absolutely needed for privacy reasons. At the very least, give the general location to within a kilometre or two, and let attendees know as promptly as possible after they register. Knowing where an event is to be held is an important piece of information to help people make decisions.
  • Don’t use offensive language around disabilities. Avoid “handicapped”, “crippled”, “sufferer/suffering”, “victim”, “wheelchair-bound”. Usually-safe terms include: “people with disabilities”, “mobility/visual/hearing impairment”, “wheelchair/scooter user”, “mobility aid”.
  • Don’t get defensive when people ask you to make your event more accessible. Listen, take their suggestions onboard, and honestly weigh the costs (in time, effort, or money) against the benefits (wider reach, greater diversity, and simply doing the right thing). Consider whether you make a partial effort to solve some of the accessibility problems, for a lower cost. If the tradeoff simply can’t work given the resources you have, apologise in a straightforward way, and say you’ll keep it in mind for the future (ideally at a specified date).
  • Don’t put the onus on people who require accommodations to educate you, to advocate for accessibility, or to do all the work toward it. They have enough on their plate as it is, and they don’t want to have to put in so much more effort than other attendees, just to be able to take part in an event. Make it easy for them to attend, and then once you’ve got them engaged and excited, perhaps they will choose to volunteer as an organiser.

This is still a learning process for me, as it is for most people. I know I’ve done a crap job of this in the past, but I hope I’ll do a better job in future. If you have any suggestions about how I can improve the way I approach event accessibilty, please feel free to contact me.

December Meme

Nov. 16th, 2014 19:10
wintercreek: People with umbrellas in the rain. ([misc] makes the beautiful world)
[personal profile] wintercreek
Hey, meme-time meets another-round-of-trying-to-get-back-into-the-swing-of-posting-time!

December Talking Meme

Pick a date below and give me a topic, and I'll ramble on. I'm good at talking. It can be anything from fandom-related (specific characters, actors, storylines, episodes, etc.) to life-related to pizza preferences to whatever you want.

They will probably be brief, or not, depending on the subject. Also, I reserve the right to decline prompts that I don't feel equipped to meet.


With this slight variation, copied from [personal profile] isis: I am not going to commit to assigned days, but if you like you can pick a week, and I shall do my best, I promise.

Week 1: Dec 1-7 (Monday through Sunday - this is also how I think of my weeks)
Week 2: Dec 8-14
Week 3: Dec 15-21
Week 4: Dec 22-28

Life permitting, I expect to be making some Yuletide rec posts on the last few days of December, and maybe a New Year's Resolution post?

Anyway, prompt me, please! What do you want to hear about?

Big Hero 6

Nov. 16th, 2014 16:07
oyceter: teruterubouzu default icon (Default)
[personal profile] oyceter
I feel with this, Frozen, and Wreck-It Ralph, Disney is really entering another golden age (I know, all the critics say that...), which makes me happy despite all my issues with Disney because Disney is so much of my childhood. I was afraid Big Hero 6 was going to be too pop-culture-referencing and wink-wink-nudge-nudge, as well as being afraid that the main character would annoy me (that's my biggest issue with How to Train Your Dragon) and that the blend of San Francisco and Tokyo would feel pasted on and Orientalist. Instead, it's a really good movie that made me cry more than once, has some great relationships, and did what I thought was a pretty impressive job of balancing gender roles and portrayals as well as having POC representation.

(That said, Disney, I will be so happy if you make your next geek-oriented movie with a female lead!)

Also, the marketing department did a really good job with the trailer; I think it only goes into the first half hour of the movie and doesn't let on to some pretty big things while keeping the overall tone of the movie.

What most impressed me about the trailer was how the first ten or fifteen minutes of the movie completely recontextualizes a lot of the scenes, so even if you've seen them a lot, there's more there when you see them again in the movie. As I mentioned, I was worried I would be annoyed at Hiro, and I kind of was... and then they introduced another character that helped a lot. Then when something happens and Hiro gets acquainted with Baymax the robot, it adds a new emotional layer to all the boy-plus-robot scenes from the trailer. Also, Baymax is hilarious and adorable, as the best companion robots seem to be. (Are there any girl-and-robot stories that mix coming of age with teaching your robot how to be more human or something? Boy-and-robot seems to be a distinct subgenre, with this, The Iron Giant, Terminator 2, and probably more I can't think of right now.)

Cultural appropriation, gender, and other considerations )

I am talking a lot about the more political aspects of the movie and not focusing on just how fun the movie is, I think partly because so much of it is in the background and not that noticeable if you aren't looking for it. I thought this was a really great example of how to have diverse characters and places and make it feel organic and not the central issue of the story, and it's what I would love to see more of, especially in genre stuff.

A lot of the reviews I've read were tired of the whole superhero thing, but I did not realize it was a superhero movie going in (I had it more pegged as an Iron Giant thing), so when Hiro starts seeing everyone as a superhero team, it totally cracked me up. Because if you are a boy with a giant robot and a 3D printer, why not?

And finally, I LOVED how the entire movie was a celebration of engineering and science and making things; one of my favorite parts is Tadashi showing Hiro his "nerd school" and how clearly he loves it. I feel I should say so much more about this, because it was a huge part of why I loved the movie so much (that, and the Tadashi-Hiro relationship) and I've spent so many words on the background stuff. Except I don't really have anything outside of how much I love it and how much they made an effort to show that the whole maker culture thing isn't solely a white guy thing.

On a completely random note, I'm amused by the Disney-Pixar-Marvel mashup so that the movie has the now-famous animation short a la Pixar and the post-credits scene a la Marvel.
otw_staff: Kiri, OTW Communications Co-Chair (Kiri)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news
"[T]he CW is trying just about everything in social media. Interestingly, once its fans tell the network which platform they want to use to interact with their favorite shows, the network leans in hard. 'We attack all the social media,' said Rick Haskins, the CW’s executive vice president of marketing and digital programs. 'Very, very quickly, the consumer says ‘this is the social platform we like [this particular show] on.’ When we see upticks, that’s when we move in quickly.'"

Fandoms all embrace social media these days--or do they? Plus how much commentary do you want on your reading material?

New Years Cards

Nov. 14th, 2014 10:35
were_duck: Ellen Ripley from Alien looking pensively to the right in her space helmet (Default)
[personal profile] were_duck
I don't really feel like sending holiday cards, but I do like sending small remembrances to people, so this year I think I'll just capitalize on my general tendency to procrastinate and send cards in January!

If you would like a card from me in January, please drop a comment with your current mailing address and the name it should be addressed to below (and please don't assume I already have it, I am the worst at keeping addresses straight). Comments are screened.

No need to reciprocate or anything. I'll send to anywhere in the world. I just wanna do this.

OTW Fannews: Fitting in Fanworks

Nov. 13th, 2014 10:47
otw_staff: Janita OTW Communications Staffer (Janita OTW Communications Staffer)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news
OTW Fannews Banner Fitting in Fanworks

From school projects to creative cosplay & crowdsourced fanfilms, fans can fit in fanworks anywhere: http://bit.ly/1xwvOwH

And now for something else

Nov. 13th, 2014 09:15
inkstone: Air Gear's Ringo pulling down her glasses (you can count on me!)
[personal profile] inkstone
Wow, thanks! Everyone's so helpful and candid. I really appreciate it. ♥

Today, I am asking for suggestions.

You know those genderflipped SFF covers that Jim Hines did? Remember this group one?

I need suggestions for a SFF cover that could receive similar treatment as that group one. Roughly the same gender ratio.

:D

Hey all, what's up?

Nov. 11th, 2014 15:59
inkstone: chibi!Ace & chibi!Luffy from One Piece (better days)
[personal profile] inkstone
1. December's coming up, and I see that talk meme making its rounds again. I really enjoyed doing that last year, but this year I think I'll do something different. I'm going to talk about books, anime & manga! Maybe those things themselves or characters I like in them! And why! Or maybe there's this aspect that super frustrates me. And why. A different title, character, or aspect every day.

If there's a particular series, character, whatever you want me to chat about, drop a comment!

2. So I'm starting a new novel. Another thriller. I'm in the planning stages and, well, I keep coming around to this point and need help.

My protagonist has anxiety disorder. Looking at the initial notes I made over the summer, this wasn't something I planned but now that I'm fitting the pieces together in preparation to write, this keeps popping out at me. And it fits.

I've done some basic research, of course, but that's... er, rather clinical and won't cut it with my style of writing. And the available information doesn't really go into the experience of daily life with anxiety disorder. While bipolar disorder is a common thing in novels (and I have many thoughts about the way it's used in YA fiction), I don't run across anxiety disorders as often and when I do, it tends to be -- how to put this -- the more extreme versions (hyperventilating panic attacks, vomiting blood) and often for plot convenience or dramatic effect. I'm not saying these symptoms don't happen, and I'm not saying they don't happen at dramatic times either, but I want the "mundane," less dramatic experience of a daily life. Because, to me, that's the reality of a person and will help me write from the POV of my heroine. It's her experience and colors her outlook, right?

Anyway, if anyone would be willing to field some questions from me, I'd really appreciate it. Especially if you come from an Asian cultural heritage. And if you do, you'll know why I'm asking for that specific distinction in relation to a mental disorder.

ETA: OMG, so many volunteers, thank you so much! ♥ I'll still take volunteers from an Asian cultural background, though.

3. Hope you're all well! ♥

OTW Fannews: Fandom is Sharing

Nov. 11th, 2014 10:00
otw_staff: Janita OTW Communications Staffer (Janita OTW Communications Staffer)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news
OTW Fannews Banner Fandom is Sharing


At Business of Fashion, Madelin Newman wrote about the rise of fashion fandom. "Jennifer Post, a Black Milk fan from California, has attended every SharkieCon since its inception and said it was unlike anything she had ever seen. 'With what other fashion brand do you have fans of the brand getting together to share in the joy of it all?' she said. 'Sharing styling tips, taking selfies, meeting people in person that you have chatted with online for hours at a time.' The depth of brand advocacy for Black Milk can be felt in the way community members create their own art, songs and photography for the label. One Sharkie even creates her own designs that she sells in a Facebook group called ‘For the love of nylon’ using old Black Milk pieces."

Sharing fandom happens at cons, in book groups, through corporate voices, and can even lead to marriage.

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Andrea J. Horbinski

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