Book log!

Sep. 1st, 2014 20:33
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[personal profile] alg
This weekend I had the Monday (today) off from my day job, so it's been lazy around these parts. Except not really; I've been reading and crafting all weekend. I wrote a short story as a gift for a friend; I scrubbed the bathroom (buying what is, in fact, the first cleaning supplies for this apartment... after six months of living in it); I cross-stitched a gift for another friend; I'm working on knitting a shawl.

I feel back in the swing of life, which is hilarious since this is probably the hottest weekend since I moved here and even with the temp in my apartment set to 75F, the a/c has been on the whole time. (Which makes me feel like I'm melting and is awful, yet has not stopped me from running around.)

Book log!

Solipsist by Henry Rollins. It's the last of the books I read this weekend, but I'm putting it first because I didn't finish it. It's depressing as hell, a stream of consciousness narrative about suicide and depression and murder. It's supposedly fiction, but it reminds me of nothing so much as Grey by Pete Wentz, which I still haven't read more than 10ish pages of. So much fiction is really autobiography or wishful thinking in disguise, in my experience, and this (and Grey) moreso than most. Grey even has passages I recognized easily from PWentz's online journals (yes, I'm an aficionado, ahem); I'm sure that if I were more familiar with HRollins's journals from the late 90s, I'd recognize passages from those in this.

Anyway, I had to give it up about 1/4 of the way through, because there's not even a narrative, it's just fantasies about killing animals and suicide and murder and hopelessness the whole way through.

Gone-Away Lake by Elizabeth Enright. I read this when I was... seven? I loved it back then, and it stuck with me all these years; Minnehaha especially. Two kids, exploring the woods, hanging out in a secret clubhouse, meeting cool adults. It was great to reread it. Not so great was the stuff that I realized I did not even remember being in the book -- I remembered the girl character and boy character doing the same things and having basically the same thoughts. But actually there is a whole thing from the male characters about how curtains are for women, and only girls are interested in fashion; the girl characters squeal at bugs and mice and run away from scary things while the boys are brave, blah blah blah.

I did not remember that being in the books at all. It made me wonder if I absorbed it without realizing as a child, or if I immediately discarded it as ridiculous and rewrote the book in my head. Probably a bit of both, but more the latter? I hope more the latter.

Working Stiff: Two Years, 262 Bodies, and the Making of a Medical Examiner by Judy Melinek MD and T.J. Mitchell. Loved this!! An account memoir-style of Melinek's first year as a forensic pathologist. Despite all the murder and suicide and 9/11 stuff, it was a really light read. I read it Friday night all the way through, and really enjoyed it. (Totally recommended for people who are doing research for characters, too; there is a lot of detail.) However, I was not thrilled with her chapter on how much she hates people who commit suicide. Her dad committed suicide when she was a child and she has a lot to say about people who do that, and lingers on the subject in a truly obnoxious way. Suicides are threaded throughout the book, but there's a whole chapter devoted to some bullshit. Skip that, and the book is fantastic.

...and, of course, I am reading Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie as I said I would do, but I keep putting it down. I'm finding it a slog, even though it has bits that shine.
otw_staff: Jennifer OTW Communications Staffer (Jennifer OTW Communications Staffer)
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This month in fandom: Teen Wolf fans gather in Spain, a children’s fantasy author is honored, Fanlore Stub September begins, and more!
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[personal profile] troisroyaumes
Hello all! I just got back from spending a week in Singapore, where I got to hang out with [personal profile] dozing_dreams, [personal profile] readerofasaph, [personal profile] lacewood, [personal profile] issenllo, [ profile] harumi, [ profile] m4gur0, [personal profile] jhameia (and briefly, a few of [personal profile] jhameia's friends, [personal profile] jolantru, [ profile] monkeygod, and [ profile] halleluyang). We ate a lot of amazing food (and had our fill of durian!), and hopefully, I will actually post up photos and write an account!

But before I get around to that, I wanted to briefly signalboost: Perfect Copy, a remix challenge for Kuroko no Basuke, went live this past week.

[personal profile] qem_chibati has posted up a useful index to all the fanfiction and fanart submissions at [community profile] kuroko_no_basket. Please go take a look!

Here are some recs: Perfect Copy recs )

Also, a group of my friends worked together on a project to write five school swap AUs, and those fics went up last week at Kuroko no Basuke Divergence Week. Obviously, I am biased but I still wholeheartedly rec all of them!

Full list of fics )
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It’s time for Stub September on Fanlore! Check out the weekly themes, add to existing entries, & for extra help, stop by the editing party on September 14th!

Iceland 2014

Aug. 31st, 2014 10:57
naraht: Arrivals board at railway station. (other-Arrivals)
[personal profile] naraht
It's been a while since I got back from my nineteen-day visit to Iceland, but I'm still dreaming that I'm there. (Literally as well as figuratively!). It was far and away my best trip to Iceland yet, and given that this was my sixth visit, this is saying something. Before going I'd worried that I should have gone somewhere different for a change but this was absolutely the right choice.

Pictures below )
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Robot fans at a Korean baseball game

Human fans aren't the only game in town, plus copyright law keeps evolving but not everyone in the media knows it:


Aug. 29th, 2014 11:51
laceblade: Rachel & Santana wearing eye masks, arms folded, on their couch (Glee: Pezberry couch)
[personal profile] laceblade
Accidentally let my DW account lapse, SO THIS IS NOT MY IDEAL ICON.
[don't pay to renew for me! I have the $$ and will do it when back from work/Up North]

Via [personal profile] rilina. You can tell a lot about a person from their music. Hit shuffle on your iPod, MP3 Player, etc. and put the first 10 songs! One rule, no skipping! Tag 10 people and pass it on!

1. Down With the Trumpets - Rizzle Kicks [on here via Teen Wolf complete season 2 playlist from 8tracks]
2. LA Song - Christian Kane
3. Stay and Defend - Wolf Gang
4. Angel of Music - Sarah Brightman [Phantom soundtrack]
5. Mama Who Bore Me - Lea Michele [Spring Awakening soundtrack]
6. Singing in the Rain/Umbrella - Glee cast, feat. Gwyneth Paltrow
7. The Small Print - Muse
8. 707 Goshitsu - NANA OST
9. Lucky - Bif Naked
10. Ready Aim Fire - Imagine Dragons

I am also not tagging, but participate if you feel so inclined.

OTW Fannews: Terms in Use

Aug. 29th, 2014 12:28
otw_staff: Jennifer OTW Communications Staffer (Jennifer OTW Communications Staffer)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news
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Fans are always creating and using new terms, but not everyone understands them in the same way.
laceblade: fanart of Inner Senshi in street clothes, hugging & smiling (Sailor Moon: inners)
[personal profile] laceblade
I feel like many of us will have things to say on the question posed by [personal profile] wrdnrd: What does feminist/social justice conrunning look like?
How does a group balance existing according to its own principles while at the same time still getting stuff done? How does it deal with straying from those principles -- whether as an org, or on the individual level? How does it deal with toxic volunteers, especially when they're an otherwise effective worker? Conversely, how does it deal with ineffective volunteers who are otherwise individuals deeply committed to the principles?

Where are the tipping points? Put up with X amount of bullshit in order to get stuff done? Or kick out problematic people and risk not having enough staffpower to get that stuff done?

And, most importantly, how can we actually make it work?? What are the secrets to recruiting and retaining good volunteers? To creating a healthy organizational working environment? To getting stuff done while still upholding our own principles?

Can it be done?

OTW Joins Project Secret Identity

Aug. 28th, 2014 10:02
otw_staff: Kiri OTW Communications Staffer (Kiri OTW Communications Staffer)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news
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Anonymity online is important to fans. OTW joins other great groups on Project Secret Identity—add your cosplay pics!

Recent comics I have enjoyed!

Aug. 26th, 2014 19:29
gretchening: picture of my face, looking mischievous, with dyed red hair in front (Default)
[personal profile] gretchening
I have been reading a mess of comics lately. Here are a few I've recently enjoyed.

Cut text to spare your flists )

"Lilies at the funeral": a review

Aug. 26th, 2014 16:54
naraht: Illustration of Tennyson's "Mariana" (art-Mariana)
[personal profile] naraht
[personal profile] legionseagle just posted an excellent 22k crossover between Return to Night and Agatha Christie's Miss Marple books. It's the longest fic that's been written in the RtN fandom so far and is an great sequel to the book, written in the style of a Golden Age detective novel.

The announcement of Dr Hilary Mansell’s engagement to Julian Fleming, the much younger owner of Larch Hill, comes as a shock to her nephew Sam, who knew Julian at Oxford. But Julian’s mother Elaine is not merely shocked, but overtly hostile. Given the intense, febrile relationship between mother and son, something has to snap.

[personal profile] legionseagle's work is always well-written, tightly plotted and impeccably well-researched, especially when it comes to the law and crime. This story is no exception and it was a perfect treat to read on the August Bank Holiday.

You can certainly read it without knowing Miss Marple and I expect that you could even read it without knowing Return to Night, but it brings a very welcome wider (and more than a little meta) perspective to what is, after all, a deeply weird canon.

Above all it's a story that's deeply Provocative of Thought if you've read RtN - and if you know me you know that's what I enjoy in fiction. The premise is very, very far away from anything that I would have considered plausible at first glance and yet it's fascinatingly and nigglingly consistent with canon at the same time. I've been musing on the story ever since I first read it and [personal profile] legionseagle has kindly given me permission to write a detailed review, which is below. Be warned that it's deeply spoilery and that these are the sort of spoilers that will affect your enjoyment of the story.

Spoilers, I'm serious, right under here )
otw_staff: Kiri OTW Communications Staffer (Kiri OTW Communications Staffer)
[personal profile] otw_staff posting in [community profile] otw_news
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Support will host an open house chat with AO3 users on August 30 & user assistance will be available in 9 languages:
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[personal profile] oyceter
Much like [personal profile] umadoshi, I was super excited when Chromatic Press started and cheered on the development of something akin to an English-language shoujo magazine, though I never got around to subscribing. Anyway, apparently the numbers are much worse than I had thought, and I was incredibly amused by the descriptions of various series that sound like a fun blend of female-friendliness and idtasticness. So I have subscribed!

And I apparently get a one month free trial I can give out! So, if anyone is interested, comment between now and Friday 8/29. If there's more than one person, I'll do a random number drawing.

Also, check out their membership drive and assorted prizes for hitting various levels.

(no subject)

Aug. 25th, 2014 14:10
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[personal profile] sanders
The funeral of Michael Brown is taking place today.

I don't want to talk, much, about him. Those of us watching the news in the US have heard about the good kid he was to his family and community, that he was college bound, that he had his hands raised in surrender when he was MURDERED.

Murdered. Not shot in self-defense. If you're thinking about arguing that fact with me after you've finished reading this: please don't. Just don't, out of respect for me, for this young man, for his family, and for police officers who do their jobs honorably.

Yes, police officers who do their jobs honorably. I said it. I grew up without a father, but I grew up surrounded by good men. Two of them just retired from their positions with the metro PD and state police, one after nearly 40 years of service, the other after close to 30. They are the men who stepped in and served as role models for my brother, who raised sons of their own (and daughters), who kept my community safe.

One of them sat down and talked with my mother about Ferguson, about his anger over Mike Brown's death and about the autopsy results that, to his veteran's experience, made no sense. It makes no sense to my mind, either, with my limited knowledge and ideas shaped between Jim's stories and Sam's, procedural dramas, and the nightly news.

Here's what I know: there are police officers who go to work every day and support their communities. They know there's more to the men and women, the young people, they arrest; they know these kids (they are kids to me at 21, 25, even 30) have stories and there was a path that took them off-course. They know there's a certain kind of desperation that comes with poverty, that gets compounded by race and institutionalized racism. They know these things because they have lived them, because they have sons and daughters of their own facing the same issues as the drug dealers they arrest, the thieves they take off the street.

"Police officer" in my mind defaults to a black man, proud of the accomplishments of his life, educated, as tough as he is caring. This is the man who takes the 2 AM phone call from a nephew in trouble. This is the man who fought back tears, taking a call on Christmas from his imprisoned son.

There is a conflict there, yes, and I will return to it.

Read more... )

"If Dundee cake...": the podfic

Aug. 25th, 2014 10:32
naraht: (Default)
[personal profile] naraht
I've been podficced! And what a pleasure, like being featured on Radio 4's Book at Bedtime.

[podfic] If Dundee cake be the food of love by Lilliburlero
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Return to Night - Mary Renault
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Julian Fleming/Hilary Mansell
Characters: Julian Fleming, Hilary Mansell
Additional Tags: Post-Canon, Aging, Weight Issues, Podfic, Podfic Length: 0-10 Minutes

A podfic of 'If Dundee cake be the food of love' by Naraht.

RenaultX: an announcement

Aug. 25th, 2014 08:16
naraht: (other-Deborah)
[personal profile] naraht
You may well have heard about this via other channels by now: [personal profile] makioka and I have decided to turn [community profile] renaultx into a full-time, all-purpose Mary Renault fan community for both ancient and contemporary novels. There is a very brief official announcement. To be even briefer, we hope you'll feel free to post your fics and other fanworks, make recs, link to interesting Renault stuff you found online, start discussions, share resources and whatever else comes to mind.

In retrospect it might have made sense to do this sooner after That Discussion in January, but better late than never. We may host a book discussion (book to be determined by comm members) in the nearish future but we don't have any grand plans for the community (apart from running the exchange again next year, obvs). It's mostly a matter of providing an unlocked, open-membership, open-posting comm on Dreamwidth and seeing what happens. There are all sorts of interesting things going on in the fandom at the moment so it'll be fun to watch.

If you have questions, suggestions, &c, obviously do let me know!

Carrot-ginger risotto for reflux

Aug. 24th, 2014 21:27
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[personal profile] skud
This is a crosspost from Chez Skud. You can comment here or there.

I get a bit of gastric reflux and it’s definitely not my favourite thing. When it flares up, it hurts to eat, especially to swallow. I’m a big fan of actual drugs (which work pretty well for me), but I also find that simple food helps, or at least hurts less: rice, broth, fruit that’s not too acidic, basic sweet biscuits/cookies (I like Arnotts teddybears), etc. I try to eat small portions. Ginger tea also helps.

Tonight I invented (or “unvented” as Elizabeth Zimmermann would have put it) a carrot-ginger risotto that hit all the right spots for me. It goes down easily, it’s just a little bit sweet and salty, it’s got a vegetable in it so it feels more like real food than plain rice would, and the ginger helps it sit more easily.

This isn’t a fully fledged recipe, it’s more of an outline for someone who already knows how to make risotto. If you know how, then you should be able to work from this. If you need more detailed instructions, my version is loosely based on this one.


Saute an onion in a tiny bit of oil — I tried to minimise it because of the reflux — until translucent.

Peel a carrot or two (I used two medium ones) and a good sized knob of ginger and either grate them or mince in a food processor. Chuck these in the pan with the onion, along with (optionally) half a teaspoon each of ground coriander and ground cumin.

Then add a cup or so of arborio rice and do the thing you do with veggie stock until it’s risotto. I also added a whole star anise to simmer along with it (also optional) and pulled it out at the end.

Pinch of salt to taste.

Eat a small bowlful slowly with a spoon. Appreciate being able to swallow without discomfort.

Needless to say, there’s no photo for this one, as it’s a bowlful of orangey slop and really not very photogenic. If you wanted to be fancy, you could sprinkle some coriander leaves, microgreens, or pea shoots on top, or have it as a side dish to some Asian-flavoured protein. Obviously I did not do these things. Chicken might be nice, though.

Comics I Have Recently Enjoyed

Aug. 23rd, 2014 15:40
were_duck: Ellen Ripley from Alien looking pensively to the right in her space helmet (Default)
[personal profile] were_duck
I have been reading a mess of comics lately. Here are a few I've recently enjoyed.

Cut text to spare your flists )

Open Discussion: Anger

Aug. 23rd, 2014 13:39
wintercreek: Two women walking on the beach through grass. ([misc] follow me out)
[personal profile] wintercreek
I am dusting off my Dreamwidth, because I'm starting to have time to journal again (Mr Creek and I watched a movie last night because neither of us had pressing things to do! I truly can't remember the last time that happened - it was at least six months ago), although I suspect that many folks have wandered away from this platform or at least from reading it regularly. (I made a post last Saturday under a certain filter and got no comments. Absent a hit counter I don't know if this is a reflection of the content being uncompelling or no one having read it; either way I guess I ought to post regularly again for a while to get a larger sample size.)

Anyway, this post is here to start a conversation about anger.

I've been turning ideas over in my head, looking at anger and how it comes up, what it's useful for, when one WANTS to be angry and when it's a state that one tries to calm and move away from. And I have come to the conclusion that I don't know very much about anger, particularly about the perspective of finding it useful.

However, here we all are with our varied perspectives! I have the impression that some of you find anger to be quite useful in driving activism. So let's talk about it.

What are your experiences with anger as it relates to your world view? To your activism and justice work? To your life philosophy and/or religion? What other emotions shape your world view? Your activism and justice work? What's the balance between anger and other emotions?

Comments are unmoderated for now; that will change if needed. Please be respectful of others' perspectives and experiences.


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Andrea J. Horbinski

August 2014

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