Welcome to Feedback Fest 2016!

Feb. 10th, 2016 10:13
otw_staff: 'Comms' and 'Sarah' written beneath the OTW logo (Sarah)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news
Feedback Fest speech bubble with multilanguage feedback phrases

International Fanworks Day is almost here & Feedback Fest kicks off now! Share your favorite fanworks!

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Feb. 10th, 2016 07:01
brainwane: My smiling face in front of a brick wall, May 2015. (Default)
[personal profile] brainwane
This tweet mentions that FogCon is coming up in Walnut Creek. As my eyes moved past it I briefly misread it and imagined a world in which there is a fan convention celebrating my old employer, Fog Creek Software. That was a strange half-second.

walking too far ahead

Feb. 9th, 2016 21:25
thistleingrey: (Default)
[personal profile] thistleingrey
Rebecca Stead, When You Reach Me (2009): so much love for this book. I'm not sure what to say. Miranda and her mother live in a NYC apartment: one could say that the biggest supporting character is 1978 New York City as it impinges upon Miranda's sixth-grade existence. Her mother, who hates her job as a paralegal (and would have trained as a lawyer if Miranda hadn't been born during law school), practices every night to appear on $20,000 Pyramid, a show that was called $25,000 by the time I watched it during summer vacations. Miranda's best friend won't talk with her after he's punched by a random kid. Random kid, Marcus, turns out to love math and physics and to chat with Miranda about a crucial moment in A Wrinkle in Time. (That moment bothered me, too, and is part of why I always loved A Swiftly Tilting Planet best. Illogical history is different.)

As a friend says in her Goodreads review, adults can anticipate the ending more swiftly than the adolescents who're considered the primary audience; the book has won a Newbery Medal. It may reduce some of the primary effect of narrative revelations, but because the story is so well told, there are other effects for non-adolescent readers to consider which pack their own punches. Things I enjoyed especially: which character serves as the cavalry when the cavalry is called in; how Miranda's perspectives about her classmates change during the narrative, sometimes having nothing directly to do with the denouement but filling out the space she inhabits; that no one is particularly evil or particularly beyond reproach, yet everyone does or embodies at least one conventionally negative thing, casually, because it's how life is.
coffeeandink: (world domination)
[personal profile] coffeeandink
So far I have obviously been terrible at posting more this year, but I do have some posts in progress and may even finish one someday. In the meantime, a bunch of older books I like have come out as ebooks, so I thought I'd recommend them:

  • Sarah Smith, Perdita Halley and Alexander von Reisden mysteries
    Series of historical mysteries, set in the turn of the (twentieth) century in Boston and Paris, featuring a blind pianist and a scientist with a troubled past. Elegant prose, sophisticated characterization, and very good on the lingering effects of childhood trauma -- when I do read mysteries, I tend to read for character, prose, and mood more than puzzle, and these are no exception. The Vanished Child is about a man who bears a great resemblance to a child who vanished many years ago, and how and why he impersonates the lost child. The Knowledge of Water shifts location to Paris and involves a writer very clearly based on Colette, plus a plot to steal the Mona Lisa; A Citizen of the Country focuses on early attempts at film-making in France.

    You might want to try these if you like Barbara Hambly's Benjamin January mysteries.

  • Kristine Smith, Jani Killian series
    Sf. As the series starts, Jani Killian has been on the run for over a decade. She was once considered one of humanity's brightest, a student at the alien idomeni institute in an attempt at alliance-building, which went drastically wrong in a clash between conservative and radical idomeni idealogues, for which Jani is partially blames. Smith's world-building is different from the generic default in interesting ways: neither her humanity nor her idomeni are unified fronts; Jani is from a Colony world whose antecedents seem to be Acadian and Hindu; one of the most important professions is "protocol officer," or paper-pusher, the authentication of information being one of the keys to interstellar commerce.

  • Cherry Wilder, The Rulers of Hylor series
    Unusually fine fantasy trilogy (published as YA in hardcover and adult in paperback) from the mid-eighties; makes a lot of standard fantasy tropes seem fresh by the excellence of the prose and the maturity of the characterization. Each book focuses on one of a group of first cousins, the children of three beautiful sisters called the "Swans of Lien," and the dynastic struggles in the continent of Hylor. Nicely variable in style as well: book one is third-person limited past, book two is first-person limited retrospective past, book three is omniscient present tense (slipping into past). Each book can be read independently of the others, although they work better together. There is an overall arc (regarding the sorceror who manipulates the lives of all three cousins) that only becomes clear in Book Three; earlier than that, you get the benefit of the varied points of views, in which a mysterious and ominous figure in one book is a dearly beloved friend in another, or a brilliant military victory becomes a tragic defeat.

    Wilder died some time ago; the books are being published by the Frenkel Literary Agency, so ... there's that. :(

And one new one for lagniappe:

Letters to Tiptree (ed. Alisa Krasnostein and Alexandra Pierce) is a collection of letters by contemporary sf writers to James Tiptree, Jr. (Alice Sheldon), plus excerpts of Tiptree's correspondence with Ursula K. Le Guin and Joanna Russ; it's on sale for $.99/£.99 pretty much everywhere, including the publishers direct. I'm partway through, absorbed, interested, argumentative, and inclined to put it on my Hugo nomination ballot for Best Related Work.

fiber tuesday

Feb. 8th, 2016 22:49
thistleingrey: (Default)
[personal profile] thistleingrey
* After some use of the Brother CS6000i sewing machine I bought last summer, I've begun pondering selling it cheaply or giving it away locally, if someone wants it. I have never needed sixty stitch types, most of them decorative, and they're not why I bought the machine---but it seems that having a little computer govern those stitches comes at the cost of good-quality, basic, unfussy stitching with reasonable tension, which I do want. Recently I've read this post on beginner-level machines. Thinking, thinking.

For now I'll buy a packet of bobbins and replace the needle on the Brother machine, since they're relatively inexpensive. Part of the tension issue is the machine's extreme pickiness about whether the bobbin and top threads match. Two colors of the same type of Gütermann thread (bought at the same time in a set) do not suit; I've spent nearly as much time troubleshooting tension and bobbin-winding as actually sewing during the last two smallish projects. The old Pfaff doesn't mind if bobbin thread and top thread were made two decades apart and are of different materials (cotton, polyester), so I don't think it's all user error.

* Reason's frog still needs three short toes. My mother's poncho has reached ~40%. Progress on MIL's laceweight scarf has slowed because the December replacement glasses cause strain---not as bad as going without glasses, but one eye's astigmatism cares when the axis correction isn't accurate.

* It is oddly difficult to find a sew-your-own bra pattern. Read more... )

On the up side... Amsterdam!

Feb. 8th, 2016 18:38
naraht: Arrivals board at railway station. (other-Arrivals)
[personal profile] naraht
By way of consoling myself for the below, I've finally booked a long-intended long weekend in Amsterdam... less than two weeks away!

I'm a devotee of Seat 61 and had long been fascinated by its description of the overnight ferry journey from London to Amsterdam. You can leave London after work, pay £49 for the ferry plus £32 for an apparently lovely cushy cabin, be in Amsterdam the next morning, and then do the same in reverse on Sunday evening to be back for a Monday morning. And did I mention that the ticket includes the train from London to Harwich as well? Why do more people not do this, and rave about it?

I could possibly be as excited about the ferry as I am about the visit. But likely that will change once I get there.

Does anyone have some good tips for Amsterdam? I don't think I happen to know people in the area but if you do happen to be there, I'd love to meet up. If not, I promise to think of you fondly while at your favourite restaurant or sight...

The truth is still out there

Feb. 6th, 2016 23:20
naraht: Scully (X-Files) (xf-Bette Davis)
[personal profile] naraht
Very much enjoying catching up on some carefully chosen X-Files episodes in preparation for the UK premiere of the new miniseries, which is on Monday night.

The careful choice is courtesy of Channel 5, which has been re-running the highlights of the show. If you're in the UK they're currently all available on demand on their website.

All the best ones (and I'm certain this isn't an original thought) seem to be the meta episodes where the show views itself with tongue firmly in cheek, or at least with a bit of wry side-eye. I'd forgotten just how funny it could be.

Also Gillian Anderson is way too hot to ever have played Hilary Mansell. I mean no insult to Hilary by saying this, but Gillian Anderson does not in any universe have 'moderate good looks.'

some things

Feb. 6th, 2016 11:03
thistleingrey: (Default)
[personal profile] thistleingrey
Some things that make me happy, with inspiration from [personal profile] yhlee:

Read more... )


Feb. 4th, 2016 22:56
thistleingrey: (Default)
[personal profile] thistleingrey
Gisō no fūfu (jdrama, 2015: 1-10 of 10 eps.): Amami Yuki is amazing, and the show's production team knows it, fortunately. She plays a librarian, Kamon Hiro, who puts on a gently smiling face in the morning as the last act before leaving her cramped, book-filled abode, and keeps it on like armor through the day. Her tart internal comments upon events emerge like dialogue in silent films: two vertical lines in white on a black screen. Thus, when a heedlessly energetic man she knew in college 25 years ago, Himura Chōji (Sawamura Ikki), pops up not only to explain that he dumped her after a childhood of friendship and one night of sex because he realized finally that he's gay, but to ask her to play his wife so that his terminally ill mother may die happily deceived, we are prepared for her to smile awkwardly, though with nuance, through almost the whole scene. Then she buys two boxed sets of books as consolation for having "lost" her youth over such a thing (this is to be a Find Your Feet story), her room drops through to the one below from the weight of her personal library, and she becomes financially responsible for her landlady's building repairs. The self that she has held aloof for years must do more than smile distantly at people she doesn't want to tolerate or burden.

Read more... )

Syllabification of the subject line is shi-tsu-re-i-shi-ma-s', pretty sure, and is the kind of "excuse me" said when departing.
otw_staff: 'Comms' and 'Kiri' written beneath the OTW logo (Kiri)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news

Banner by Erin of an OTW logo beamed by a spotlight over the words Open Doors

Open Doors is pleased to announce the completion of five archive import projects! Not only will the original contents be preserved on AO3, but all of the archives can continue to grow.

naraht: (Default)
[personal profile] naraht
I spent £10 on Amazon for the 1937 edition of Romanis and Mitchiner's The Science and Practice of Surgery. It's a magisterial two-volume work and could probably necessitate surgery if you dropped even one volume on your toe.

Regular readers of my fiction should consider themselves duly warned about future content...

pretty things

Feb. 2nd, 2016 22:00
thistleingrey: (Default)
[personal profile] thistleingrey
Sheila Paine, Embroidered Textiles: A World Guide to Traditional Patterns (2008): far, far better world coverage than the other textile-producing/decorating books I've seen to date. It isn't informative in depth, despite the semi-contextualized additional discussion granted to some pieces, but the book justifies its subtitle. Its plates are lovely; I suspect they'd be inspiring to someone better able to embroider than I. There is a Further Reading section whose content I hope to mine somewhat.

Also seen recently, as in seen on a shelf, not read:

Maruta Grasmane, Latviešu tautas tērpi, raksti, izšūšana (2000), on Latvian textiles and costume

Kerezsi Ágnes, Obi-ugor viseletek = Ob-Ugrian costume (2010), on traditional Finno-Ugrian clothing near the Arctic Circle

the tables of contents of twelve years' worth of Medieval Clothing and Textiles

Notes from my FOSDEM talk

Feb. 1st, 2016 02:27
brainwane: My smiling face in front of a brick wall, May 2015. (Default)
[personal profile] brainwane
"Comparing codes of conduct to copyleft licenses": written notes for a talk by Sumana Harihareswara, delivered in the Legal and Policy Issues DevRoom at FOSDEM, 31 January 2016 in Brussels, Belgium. Video recording arriving around March 2016. Condensed notes available at Anjana Sofia Vakil's blog.

Good afternoon. I'm Sumana Harihareswara, and I represent myself, and my firm Changeset Consulting http://changeset.nyc/ . I'm here to discuss some things we can learn from comparing antiharassment policies, or community codes of conduct, to copyleft software licenses such as the GPL. I'll be laying out some major similarities and differences, especially delving into how these different approaches give us insight about common community attitudes and assumptions. And I'll lay out some lessons we can apply as we consider and advocate various sides of these issues, and potentially to apply to some other topics within free and open source software as well.

My notes will all be available online after this, so you don't have to scramble to write down my brilliant insights, or, more likely, links. And I don't have any slides. If you really need slides, I'm sorry, and if you're like, YES! then just bask in the next twenty-five minutes.

Text of my notes )

The Great Google Drive Clean-Out

Jan. 31st, 2016 13:25
inkstone: woman with long dark hair, text: set me free (set me free)
[personal profile] inkstone
I went through my Google Drive and pulled out the various old fics stashed there. I'm letting them all go.

Funnily enough, the majority only needed a sentence or two to finish them. The writer's brain is a weird place. I'd always thought they were all massively incomplete!

Traces (3164 words) by inkstone
Fandom: Samurai Deeper Kyo
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Characters: Shiina Yuya, Mibu Kyoushirou, Sakuya (Samurai Deeper Kyo)
Additional Tags: Bounty Hunters, Canon-Typical Violence, Post-Canon, Canon - Manga

Summary: Yuya is not a woman who waits.

The Ghost of You (2306 words) by inkstone
Fandom: Shin Angyo Onshi
Rating: Mature
Warnings: Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Relationships: Marlene von Lucid/Sando
Characters: Marlene von Lucid, Sando
Additional Tags: Canon-Typical Violence, Post-Canon, Grief/Mourning, Warrior Women, Enemies, Uneasy Allies

Summary: What--and who--lays between Marlene and Sando is not so easily breached.

Eyes of Silver, Hair of Gold (674 words) by inkstone
Fandom: Claymore
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Characters: Teresa (Claymore)
Additional Tags: Warrior Women

Summary: Selected memories from the life of a warrior.

Guest Post: Olivia Riley

Jan. 31st, 2016 10:35
otw_staff: 'Comms' and 'Claudia' written beneath the OTW Logo (Claudia)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news
Banner by caitie of an OTW-themed guest access lanyard

In today’s guest post, Olivia Riley talks about what she learned while writing her undergrad thesis on fanfic and the AO3 http://bit.ly/1SkCFXe
naraht: (Default)
[personal profile] naraht
Here I present a fandom that I've been meaning to nominate for Yuletide several years running. I don't usually do five-minute fandoms but you have to admit that this one is charming...

A catchy Icelandic pop song about a guy who was really cool in high school and then became a super-famous poet. (Only in Iceland...) The narrator of the song admired the poet greatly, and still does. They meet again years later by chance, at a protest against the American military base in Keflavik, and the narrator is shocked by how warmly the poet greets him. ("Komdu sæll og blessaður" is a very formal greeting these days... not quite translatable but it literally means "happiness and blessing come to you.")

And... in the final repeat of the chorus, it transpires that they've moved in together. All together now: awww.

(I want to say 'it's just like The Charioteer if Ralph were a radical Icelandic poet in the 1980s,' but I feel this may be an AU too far.)

Possibly I've never nominated the song because I'm not actually certain what sort of fic I would request. Or possibly it's because I was just put off by the need to translate from Icelandic. But here goes nothing... I make no claims for the literary merit of this translation, because there isn't any, but you can tell how much happiness and excitement there is in the song...

English translation: Incredibly famous )

Icelandic text: Ofboðslega frægur )
snarp: small cute androgynous android crossing arms and looking very serious (Default)
[personal profile] snarp
because I'm tired, and thus most of my internet communications have been via the tablet while lying in bed. Sorry. My crossposter obviously still isn't done, and the IFTTT Dreamwidth-to-Tumblr one I was using before is too glitchy and hands-on for my current sluggish state. I may try a Tumblr-to-Dreamwidth one instead.

My main Tumblr is just snarp as usual, and my reblogging-stuff-only one is prospitianEscapee.

My father is very good at denial.

Jan. 30th, 2016 19:49
snarp: small cute androgynous android crossing arms and looking very serious (Default)
[personal profile] snarp
Here is a story about his abilities that I think is pretty interesting! And also depressing. Also that.

Warning for death. )
otw_staff: 'Comms' and 'Janet' written beneath the OTW logo (Janet)
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Fireworks overlaid with the text OTW Fannews Celebrations in Focus
2015’s fandom developments could range from the very personal to very mainstream, as well as the local to worldwide. http://bit.ly/1WTJyO4


ahorbinski: shelves stuffed with books (Default)
Andrea J. Horbinski

February 2016

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