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February 20th, 2017 09:33 am - FMK#1: Arthuriana
OK! I should have all the fiction sorted and reshelved by tonight, so WE'RE DOING THIS. If I manage to do this weekly we should be done in only a year!

Here's how it will go: I will post a list of 10-20 unread books that I own. Sometimes it will be themed, sometimes it will just be random. It will be a poll, and you folks will get to vote F, M, or K for each book.

F means "melannen should have a single night of ill-considered passion with it and then decide whether to turn that into a long-term thing or dump it with prejudice."
M means "melannen should commit long-term and continue to keep the book in her bedroom indefinitely."
K means "melannen should dispose of it posthaste."

This may remind people of a certain familiar game. Unfortunately I don't think DW polls have any way to force a three-way choice like in the game, so it's a free vote for each title. (Also I don't think I could agree to give up 1/3 of my books anyway.)

I will read the book with the most F votes, hopefully within the next week, and then post about it here.
I will dispose of the book with the most K votes, *if* there are enough total K votes on all titles to make a quorum (i.e., if only one person votes K in the whole poll, I don't consider myself bound to their vote.)
All other titles, I will think about very hard and take your votes into consideration!

Feel free to vote even if you only have a vague idea about the book or author. Or even if you've never heard of it but think the title is cool. That's why I bought most of these, after all.
Feel free to vote F on terrible books just because you want to make me read them.
Please leave comments with more information on the book or justifying your votes if you do have things to say!

Anon/no account votes and comments are on. Some background on me and my library if you wander here from far away: I am an SF fan and aspiring SF writer (emphasis on "aspiring" rather than "writing" rn). I would like to keep books that are a) good and/or b) important or foundational texts in the genre and/or c) help balance the proportion of books not by/about white dudes in my library.

Got that? Time to vote! )
(Books on the topic I have read and am definitely keeping: the Mike Ashley anthologies, Parke Godwin's Firelord, a mysterly Goldsmith "King Arthur" that is hilariously bowdlerized, Sutcliff's Arthur books, Twain's Connecticut Yankee, White's the Once and Future King, lots of pre-1860 retellings and sources, lots of "nonfiction".)

(46 comments | Reply)


February 17th, 2017 02:49 pm
So, way back in, um, August, [personal profile] skygiants posted about Armed Services Edition paperbacks that were printed in special editions for serving military in WWII, and I mentioned I owned one and said if I could ever figure out where it was shelved I would post pictures.

Well, I didn't manage to find it until November, and by then I had quit Tumblr for self-defense, so my lazy method of using Tumblr as an image host wasn't happening. But DW just rolled out a gui for its image hosting! So, only six months later, here are the pictures!

The one I own is "An Almanac for Moderns", which is basically a book of 365 short essays about nature and science, to be read one a day for a year. So I was almost right when I said I thought it was a field guide, yet couldn't find it shelved with the field guides. It's pretty fun, actually, but I could never stick with one chapter a day. As you might guess for an edition that was meant to be small and was published during the WWII paper shortages, the pages are very thin and very delicate seventy years later. (And I still haven't figured out why the sideways binding; to me it makes it more difficult to read, although maybe when it was newer it meant you could lay it flat on a table to read more easily?)

An Almanac for Moderns )

(There's a few more uploaded in my dw images, if you can figure out how to get there....)

As is visible in a couple of the photos, my book has a single staple reinforcing the binding, which is a large part of what makes it hard to read. I can't tell if this was part of the standard binding or it was added by a later owner. It doesn't seem to be a later addition? It's definitely not a standard staple - you would have needed a heavy-duty stapler and staples - and the binding isn't falling apart in such a way that it seems needed. So IDK unless [personal profile] skygiants knows!

And while I am posting images of cool old books I own, if you have ever been to an American public school you are probably familiar with the idea of a Marble composition book )

(the set of books I found also included an account books of day-to-day expenses in the late 19th century. Someday I am going to figure out where the dude was living and donate it to a historical society. They came with 0 provenance, so that didn't help.)

I am actually continuing to make substantial progress on the "sort all the books" project! I may start posting polls so you all can help me decide what to read off my long-unread fiction piles next - I am thinking "fuck, marry, kill" format where you get to decide if I have a sudden night of ill-considered passion, or continue my long-term relationship with having it in my bedroom, or get rid of it unread.

And finally, here is a picture of a cat:

(29 comments | Reply)


February 9th, 2017 11:24 am
So then I came down with a bad-cold-possibly-the-flu and went off to a farm for three days to help fence a sheep pasture, which is a better life decision than it sounds like, because SHEEPS and FREE-RANGE CHICKENS and BABY DONKEY and RIDING AROUND IN A CART also, like, farm. Yay for little hobby farms that might be something more some day.

Also I was thinking about Rivers of London, and about how I probably wouldn't have had the courage to write Mama Thames the way he did, because of the way she gets close to certain stereotypes that can be dangerous to play with, but also that I'd like to hope that I would still be able to have that kind of diversity in the story, and it occurred to me that probably what I would have done is made the West African lady be the Last Living Newtonian School Wizard instead of the Dangerously Sexual River Goddess-Mother.

And then I started trying to make it work, because, okay, if she's the last survivor of the Folly, then obviously the Nightingale jumped into the Thames sometime in the early 50s and then found himself crawling out with a whole new kind of magic behind him, which is also FUN, but means he wasn't there either when the last of the WWII veterans died or retired or were invalided out. But they needed SOMEBODY who could keep the agreements and responsibilities, at least until the magic had died out enough that it didn't matter. And they couldn't find anybody, except - there's this black woman, friend of Molly's from below stairs, maybe, figured out Lux on her own and then kept wanting to know, and became somebody's Eliza Doolittle project - just curious whether a pig could be taught to sing, not whether it was well done, but a secret apprentice kept him going when there wasn't much else that pulled him out of the fog, and she was good at it, and hungry to learn, and before either of them realized, she'd made mastery.

And probably her teacher took himself out not long after because dude had issues. but that meant that when they needed someone, anyone to hold the Folly - when the last few half-trained survivors of the War put their heads together and sent out a spell to search for anyone who still had Mastery and could be talked into doing the job, probably only a few years after Nightingale went into the River - she was what they got: young West African woman, maybe mid-twenties, worked as a housekeeper most of her life, but inarguably oathbound to the Folly and inarguably a master of Newtonian magics.

Obviously this would not go down well with a great many people, but magic is dying anyway, right? really all they need is a placeholder to keep things from falling apart catastrophically before they wind down, and you couldn't ask a young man from a good family to waste ten years training on something that will be useless in twenty, so why not?

So then it's just her and Molly rattling around the big old place for a long time, and probably without even the police connection to keep them busy.

Of course once it becomes clear that magic isn't dying out for good it's much too late to change their minds and there's nobody else left at all; they do start trying to send her apprentices - those nice young men from good families - but none of them are interested in working hard enough to learn, or at least not working when it's her teaching them, and inevitably they learn that a "real" Folly wizard is still alive, because the Nightingale didn't exactly die, and then they go off to the Court of the Thames to get him to back them up. And when they come back from the River they aren't interested in being wizards at all any more and usually end up moving to Herefordshire.

Until she stumbles on Peter, of course.

I don't have a plot (other than that her relationship with Uncle Thomas Thames would be very very interesting) but I did have an entire night of fever dreams based on it so I'm convinced it would totally work.

(14 comments | Reply)


January 31st, 2017 07:05 pm - Wednesday Reading
Hi Dreamwidth!

I am back in the place where I am reading ALL THE NOVELS because being continuously reminded of reality makes me too nauseous to eat so I am avoiding pretty much all social media and am 8 books ahead on my Goodreads challenge for the year. How are you?

Also is there anyone else who has read all the way to the end of Nemesis in the Marcus Didius Falco mysteries and can explain to me WTF WAS THAT ENDING???

I mean admittedly I was blackrom shipping them pretty hard* all along but I don't think it warped my perceptions that much? How was that supposed to suddenly be justifiable?




*These books did make it clear that if you need to flesh out the personal life of a series protagonist without turning it into a soap opera, just filling all four troll romance quadrants ASAP really does make a great shortcut.

(6 comments | Reply)


January 23rd, 2017 09:03 am
I marched*!

I ended up catching a ride to DC with the friends coming from the Barony of Cynnabar. I'm glad I went. I'm also glad I didn't go by myself; it wasn't scary or anything but having other specific people to keep an eye on helped with scale.

(Also, wow is Michigan angry. Most people didn't bother IDing themselves by home state, but I think nearly every Michigander there had Michigan on their sign somewhere.)

Also, nobody told me I was supposed to make a pink hat, why did nobody tell me (the website specifically said there were no matching clothes or colors proposed!) I was really heartened by the number of My First Knitting Project hats people were wearing, though - someday I really do need to finally write that essay on knitting and social resistance.

My sister marched in Reykjavik; I haven't seen that one in any of the round-up photoposts so here's the best set of Reykjavik photos I've seen.

*You may have heard contradictory things about whether we ever actually marched in DC. )

So yeah, I'm glad I had that experience. I always feel like you should take part in political action like that not because you think you being there will achieve the goal, but just because you want to be there, and it was worth being there Saturday.

that said, goal-wise: )

4. Illegitimi non carborundum.

And if all else fails, outlive the bastards. And live well. They may run our country but they can't run our lives if we don't let them in.

On that note, this will probably go back to being a mostly non-specific-politics journal (until the next time I need to desperately beg for a ride, at least) because maintaining a free cultural space is also a very important means of resistance, especially over a long grind.

Tags:

(19 comments | Reply)


January 20th, 2017 04:35 pm
Now y'all have presented me with too many options and I can't decide what to do tomorrow. :P I guess I will keep thinking about it and see if anyone gets back to me.

Anyway, I hear it is More Joy Day, so I went and posted Rivers of Ankh-Morpork. (since we all know I will never get around to getting it beta-read.) Have some joy?

Rivers of Ankh-Morpork (6335 words) by melannen
Fandom: Rivers of London - Ben Aaronovitch, Discworld - Terry Pratchett
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Peter Grant, Angua von Uberwald, Samuel Vimes, Foul Ole Ron, Gaspode (Discworld), Sybil Ramkin, Thomas Nightingale
Additional Tags: Crossover, community policing, hydrological engineering, Ankh-Morpork City Watch
Summary:

The Faceless Man miscalculates, and Peter Grant falls into a river.

...well, more onto a river, really. He may have bounced.


(Reply)


January 18th, 2017 08:51 pm
OK, I went and took Saturday off work.

Now I get to decide if I want to:

-Go to the last-ever goodbye by-the-bag-clearance sale at the BIG used books warehouse
-Go to the big protest in DC
-Go to the littler protest in Annapolis or Baltimore
-See if the timing works to go to the book sale AND the Annapolis protest

Is anyone planning to go to the DC march?

I am super-hesitant go without being part of a group, having done giant events in DC before and having some idea of what it's like, and I'm not currently hooked up with any local groups of the sort that would send people. The ones in the other cities will probably be smaller and calmer, since most local people will probably make the short trip to DC. On the other hand if I did have a group to hold my hand it would probably be worth going to DC...

(13 comments | Reply)


January 11th, 2017 06:35 pm - Wednesday reading?
OK, it's Wednesday, let's do my reading post for all of 2016. <_<

My reading goals for 2016 were :
-200 total books (which is what I started at last year, and had to increase because I was getting too far ahead, but I don't think that'll be the case this year.)
-Finish the rest of the started-but-not-finished and review copy books
-Before Hugo noms close, read enough Hugo eligible stuff to be comfortable nomming
-After Hugo noms close, get through some of those comics you own but haven't read

I made my 200 books goodreads goal for the year! It was looking really dicey for awhile there but then I was sick for a month and also really wanting to be anywhere but this Earth, so I made it through a whole stack of to-read paperback and comics and got caught up.

I, uh, did not make it through the rest of the started-but-not-finished and review copy books. I made it through some, though, and at least the total did not *increase*. Much. My currently-reading is currently at 32 books but only 17 have been on there for more than a year, so, uh. \o/
Unfortunately most of the ER books read last year still need reviewing...
I did make it through enough to nom in all the Hugo fiction categories, at least, but it was actually really hard work? I am not doing that again unless I am actually being paid to Science Fiction as a job. I have too much old stuff to catch up on to read that much current stuff, anyway.
I didn't make too much of a dent on owned-comics last year, but I didn't acquire too many more, and I've actually been getting through a lot of my floppies backlog in the last couple weeks - I started a knitting project that's pretty monotonous, so I've been counting my rows by counting out a pile of comics to match the number of rows, and then every time I finish a row, I read a comic. I am trying to figure out how to adapt this to using other to-dos to count knitting rows.

Goals for this year:
1. Read 200 books, at least half of which I already owned as of 12/2016
2. Catch up on ER and get my currently-reading consistently under 20
3. Do a full clearout and re-sort (I am actually about halfway though the re-sort, although I am out of shelf. Clearout will be harder. I realize this isn't really about reading but close enough.)
4. Finish/catch up on at least a dozen fiction series I've been behind on. (Preferably emphasizing ones where I actually own unread books in the series.)

stats )

May do an "Actually talking about the books" post tomorrow! We'll see.

(Reply)


January 4th, 2017 02:45 pm
hi I am back from Iceland! Iceland was great.

I should do some year-end wrap up posts.

Meanwhile somebody should make a fanfic appear that is backstory for Hyacinthe the placée vampire that involves a lot of Dominique, and Hannibal having connections among the resurrected dead of Paris, bonus points if there's a framing story that's Lydia reading Simon's old correspondence with Chloe and/or Rose about the science, alternatively someone can just steal the version that is probably in Hambly's notes somewhere and give it to me. thnx.

(2 comments | Reply)


December 28th, 2016 01:25 pm
Hi everyone! I am still mostly avoiding the internet, and I am given to understand this is a good choice because 2016 is still 2016-ing. Avoiding the internet while snowed in a small town in northern Iceland is a pretty good way to do it, though. I am currently listening to the gale howl outside while my sister makes Iceland-style Chocolate Soup; in a couple hours we plan to walk down the street to the outdoor geothermal hotpots, and maybe walk to the beach and see what the whitecaps on the fjord have washed up. So, overall, could be worse off.

Between the lamb and the fish and the reindeer pate and cheeses and skyr and jólaöl and all the butter-based seasonal pastries I think Iceland is going to earn me back all the winter energy stores I used up when I was sick.

I am enjoying yt this year though! Also a good companion when you are in the Arctic and all the roads out of town are closed. I finally got an Ashers fic! (Right when I have been reading all the Ben January, too. Discussion exercise: compare and contrast narrative roles of Hannibal and Don Simon in literary and political context. Bonus points for using them as a gateway to analysis of constructs of race in historical vs. fantasy fiction in the late 20th century.)

(alternatively write me fic where Hannibal meets a vampire in Paris at just the wrong point.)

Anyway here is my gift:

A Visit From a Friend (1022 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: James Asher Vampire Series - Barbara Hambly
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: James Asher/Lydia Asher/Simon Ysidro
Characters: Lydia Asher, Miranda Asher, James Asher, Simon Ysidro
Additional Tags: Surprises, Presents, Post-Book(s), Fluff, Oxford
Summary:

Ysidro visits the Ashers the only way he knows how.



I did manage to post mine before leaving the country, even if as usual it's not as polished as I'd like! Also it's probably blatantly obvious this year which one I wrote.

...hopefully the roads south will be open again by the time we need to get to the airport...

eta: dear Europe: your exclusive pokemon is horrifying who decided a part clown part gecko part bat was a good idea

(13 comments | Reply)


December 8th, 2016 10:52 am
Hi!

I am on the tail end of what was apparently an extremely extended case of salmonella poisoning. Fun. I had just enough cope to make it through work every day and then go home and get slept on by a cat, so I basically missed the entire month of November.

The timing of it has also given me a conditioned nausea response to mention of certain current events (altho tbf that might not be entirely the salmonella's fault) so I went mostly internet cold turkey and will probably be less around on social media for awhile yet, at least until my digestive tract and I trust each other enough to start taking risks. Right now I am just aspiring to be able to make the yuletide deadline.

I have been catching up on my fiction reading, though, so if you want proof that I'm alive I am updating Goodreads.

(11 comments | Reply)


November 7th, 2016 09:36 am
1. The worst that can happen is global thermonuclear war, and global thermonuclear war is the fastest way I know of to reverse global warming, so it's a win-win situation really. repeat as necessary.

(also I will be dead and not have to worry about it anyway, and that map is a fascinating toy.)

2. I am apparently doing NaNo (w/ the asteroid story and various wips), or rather NONONONO as I have named the scrivener file, because some part of me *does* know better. Anyway I have set a private goal of 1000 words a day and am already well behind, but if someone wants to add me as a buddy, I'm on the website.

3. I have read all of the One-Punch Man manga in the last week. I had been reading Dragon Ball for mindless escapism but that gets so high-energy it is tiring, One-Punch Man is the same "punch the bad guys" payoff while being the opposite of high-energy. (If you don't know OPM, it's a currently running manga/anime/previously webcomic set in a shounen-rules world where superheroes kill giant monsters. You know how in superhero fanfic, you get the bad guys that are totally just NPCs nobody is expected to care about, there to give the heroes something to do in between working out their personal issues and intra-hero politics? That's One Punch Man canon.

The MC is a guy named Saitama whose superpower is basically the middle of the Hyperbole and a Half depression comic, he is so out of fucks to give that he is literally invincible. Only this world runs on shonen rules, so he is LITERALLY invincible and the Strongest Hero In The World. (Also even stripped down to his basic Trying to Cope mode, he is a really good person, so there's that too.)

(I kind of want to write a fanfic where somebody gets him on antidepressants finally and he gets to the end of that comic and eventually realizes that maybe everything isn't completely bullshit, but I am probably not the right person to write it.)

Anyway, yeah, A++ low energy escapism, just wish there was longfic that wasn't shippy now that I'm done with manga canon. (debating attempting to find the anime.)

4. So speaking of, I am looking for something that will do with my comic collection what LibraryThing does with my books. To wit: an easy way to get a searchable/sortable list on my smartphone of what I have and what I am actively looking for.

I looked at apps in the Play store, but the two that looked useful enough to try required adding comics by looking them up in a database, with no way to manually enter stuff the database couldn't find, and if I can't enter my collection of Tandy Computer promotional comics from the early eighties, it is useless to me. (Not to mention the fancomics from the Con.txt swap table and the ones I got for being a paid Keenspot charter member.) The ones I tried couldn't even find Axe Cop.

What I would really like is: I put in a title, it lets me go through a list of comics with that title and click the ones I have and the ones I don't have and am looking for, and lets me manually enter if they aren't in the database, and then lets me look at those lists even if I am not connected to the internet. Preferably it would also let me enter my trades and compare what's in the trade to what's in floppies.

I can do it with a spreadsheet and spreadsheet app if I have to, but it seems like this is a problem somebody should have solved already. Anybody have recs?

5. So jealous of the people who have read The Hanging Tree already. (I will get that fic out to beta! Someday! Eventually!)

(17 comments | Reply)


October 27th, 2016 03:54 pm
So, anyone want to beta Rivers of Ankh-Morpork at ~6500 words?

Mostly looking for a) canon beta for either canon, b) copyedit, c) somebody to tell me if I actually wrote the whole thing.


Also I read the Squirrel Girl And The GLA trade, and - well, if anybody else was wondering, it's not realated to the new ongoing, it's just reprints of all her pre-Ryan North appearances. Most of them are pretty good! Most of the trade is the GLA miniseries, though, and it was just. Super disappointing?

First if you're parodying something, you have to actually be *funny* rather than just *depressing*.

But also - the GLA actually has a pretty great powerset? And the book made absolutely no argument for why it wasn't a pretty great powerset? Like, they aren't really set up to take down Thanos or Galactus or even Fin Fang Foom, but they don't need to be, they have Squirrel Girl. What they do have is, like, a REALLY GOOD covert ops/infiltration team. A character who can shapeshift to play any role as long as it's a white woman (and also serve as a tank in a crisis); a character who can teleport anywhere as long as it's the next room; a character who can change size and shape and be invisible and fit through the tiniest cracks. And one who can talk to squirrels. (....Okay admittedly Mr. Immortal is pretty useless for anything other than distracting the guards.)

They could get into anywhere and retrieve any information! They would be the world's most efficient and terrifying spy team. But all the writers seem too committed to the idea that they are humorously useless powers to actually do anything interesting.

I am headcanoning that they are in fact the Marvel Universe's most terrifying and efficient spy team and all of that "sitting around playing cards" stuff is just a really good cover story.

(4 comments | Reply)


October 20th, 2016 04:06 pm
1. \o/ I wrote 1700 words today after about a week of not much! On yuletide, even! Unfortunately not my assigned yuletide, but we try. Now, can I do that for all of November?

2. I am really excited for my actual assignment but I have a pile of background reading about a foot high to do as much of as I can first, and I keep adding to the pile. Raise your hand if you're surprised.

3. I.. may or may not actually get around to writing a letter...? YT writer, you're fine with what's in the assignment email and in the old letters, right? Nothing has changed I promise.

4. I am not doing super-well with, like, keeping up with life. But then this is the time of year when my body thinks I should be preparing to hibernate. And I think work is getting more back into a routine? Maybe? If they manage to fix the roof before it falls in?

5. I finished rewatch of S1 of Leverage! I forgot that my tragedy in that fandom is that all I actually want out of it is a long, meaty, hilarious pre-canon fic about Nate and Sophie chasing each other all over Europe. But I cannot write it because the bits of backstory are spread out over many, many canon episodes and I am not a person who can consume AV fandoms in a way that will let me collate all that. And all the current fandom gives me is The Best OT3 Ever, and don't get me wrong, I love them all and I love their canon OT3, but. The Golden Trio basically already have figured out who they are and have decided they like who they are and the only problem they need solved is finding other people who agree with them about liking who they are, and they've pretty much got that solved by halfway though S1, the rest is all details. Sophie, on the other hand. Sophie has layers. (I really really love the fact that the S1 ender that you expected to be all about Nate and his manpain ended up actually being about Sophie's issues and Sophie's past. Sooophie. Every time I tried to write OT3 it ended up being about Sophie and figuring out Sophie is HARD so I never finished anything.)

(now I remember, I stopped watching in the first place because Sophie left. At least now I know she definitely comes back after.)

Other things I would like that the fandom is not giving me: Sophie/Eliot. Maggie/Parker. Five-way found family telepathic soulbond (which is basically canon already, the way they use the earbuds thematically is SO GREAT, now I just need the post-canon fic where Nate and Sophie are off on a cruise somewhere and start hearing the other three on a job even though they don't have earbuds in.)

6. *cough* anyway

So [personal profile] jjhunter and I have been talking about Ancillary London (or maybe Rivers of the Radch?) You should come join us.

Also somebody needs to convince me I don't actually need to read The Science of Discworld in order to write Rivers of Ankh-Morpork. Even if Peter Grant probably has read it already.

I have the first comics trade but haven't read it yet because I have been reading Peter as looking vaguely like, oh, Rainbow Sun Franck c. SGA, and Thomas looking vaguely like Tim Gunn or sth, and at least judging by the cover, that is really not where the comic went with character designs, so I am scared.

7. Also I keep switching between Fivethirtyeight to obsess and Leverage to watch evil corrupt billionaires cry, which was a mistake, because now I want a story about the *other* Nate being the mastermind of a team of the world's greatest criminals. And they were a YT nom. And they could pull off a great caper plot, I am convinced. Whiz Kid Harry drinking his endless bottles of diet root beer that he somehow finds even in the middle of Antarctica. I just can't think of anything I want to see them steal.

(28 comments | Reply)


October 10th, 2016 09:00 pm
hi yuletide writer! I did not expect assignments to go out That Fast.

I am at a convention and will probably not be able to get my letter up until Wednesday evening at the earliest.

This is the good thing about linking to a tag instead of a placeholder, right, you can keep coming to the tag and finding my increasingly desperate excuses for not having the letter done yet. It also means when you accidentally link the wrong tag in the sign-up you can just edit the tag instead of the sign-up.

Anyway for generalities you can scroll down the fandom:yuletide tag to previous years' letters, pretty much everything still applies. And feel free to just go by what's in the actual requests, as always, they were complete and accurate.

If you matched on Ashers or Paleontologists, there are requests in previous letters down-tag. If you matched on Saxons vs. Vikings (+ Emma is her own faction by herself), I am pretty sure you are [personal profile] monksandbones and were actually the first person ever to write for me in an exchange so you know what's up. (If you are somebody else and matched on that I LOVE YOU and don't worry I don't know much about the period so you can get away with anything.) If you matched on Imperial Radch or Rivers of London, check recent posts in the fandom:sf lit tag for my various ramblings on those at the time I read them. I don't think anybody offered Barnaby, but if you did, you know what you're doing, and if you didn't, it's not really an easy-access fandom alas, so don't worry about it.

I will still try for an actual letter once I'm home but this should hold you in the meantime.

(1 comment | Reply)


October 4th, 2016 05:44 pm
1. Dammit I am apparently writing Rivers of Ankh-Morpork now whyyyy

2. I am probably going to fail do NaNoWriMo with the asteroid belt story but haven't actually gotten moving on setting that up yet, whooo (election year is always bad for nano because I work a 18 hour day election day, an 12 hour day the day before, and then collapse the day after, so I start the first week three days in the hole)

(that's going to be my excuse)

3. I also haven't done anything regarding YT signup but presumably I will get around to that eventually.

4. Have you ever had a thing you put off doing for ages even though you knew it would be totally simple if you would just get off your butt and DO IT and then you finally do and it turns out, actually, no, that was actually a SUPER HARD AND TIME-CONSUMING task, and then you feel weirdly vindicated in putting it off after all? That was basically my weekend.

5. MEANWHILE I am going to be spending an extended weekend this weekend at UW-Madison - they paid for me to go for a work thing, so I decided to take the train down because I could and then spend an extra couple days exploring. So, DW, what are the must-see places in Madison, Wisconsin?

(20 comments | Reply)


September 28th, 2016 01:29 pm
I finished reading Rivers of London this morning! (Just the five novels, I'm saving the ancillary stories so there's something to look forward to.) My summary was fairly accurate! I'm amused that at the end of Foxglove Summer, even Peter was surprised vague spoilers )

I'm mostly surprised that... there wasn't too much that I missed? Okay, I missed most of the main plot in Foxglove Summer, but I think a lot of the fic I was reading pre-dated it, so I was expecting that. It also had probably the strongest plot of the set - the first four really didn't have plot as their strongest point. Which is not, I will note, necessarily a criticism - I like books that don't narrow-focus on plot, as long as the stuff they're doing in the meantime is fun, and it is - I so, so appreciate that Rivers of London has all of the really, really strong sense of place that is completely missing from, say, the Dresden Files. They feel like - like, they've got the voice and trappings of a police procedural, and the setting and characters of an urban fantasy, but the structure and mood of a cozy, and that was apparently what I needed.

And the criticism of police culture that was coming through strongly in the fic is there in canon; not as a central point, but Peter, while being 100% a copper, is never uncritical of what the police are doing. So I could read it without the sour taste in my mouth that pretty much all other police-focused fiction has been giving me lately. (Just Peter Grant and Sam Vimes are exempt, basically.)

(I dare somebody to write Rivers of Ankh-Morpork.)

Unfortunately all the fanfic-y feelings I got involve characters that very clearly have major canon revelations coming up, and I have been reminded by Check Please! how very, very bad I am at being invested that way in characters in an open canon, so probably I will not be writing anything.

(Well, maybe bits of Rivers of Ankh-Morpork.)


...anyway beyond that I've been deep in avoidance mode lately. I am watching the third season of the Great British Bake-Off because sometime you just need Sue Perkins making terrible puns in a tent, and started hopefully a full watch-through of Leverage in order because sometimes you just need to watch asshole billionaires being made to weep bitter tears, and nearly caught up on the Rex Factor podcast because there is nothing like learning about 10th century Scotsmen murdering each other to help one stop catastrophizing about modern politics (#RememberAed). Also found, and watched, "Under the Emerald Sea", a Nature special that aired when I was five that is the first TV show I ever remember bugging my parents to let me stay up late to watch.

So if anyone wants to talk to me about any of those I'm up for it.

Also I went to the beach on what I accurately predicted to be the last day of the year that sea-bathing would be doable, played some Pokemon Go (level 22! Still haven't found any good way to hatch eggs without using a data plan!), and started what is hopefully going to be a full reshelve and clear out of my books, because it was just becoming unsustainable. Step 1: all 1600+ nonfiction books in dewey decimal order. ish.

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September 16th, 2016 10:10 pm - yt noms
OK I yt nommed:

?! Solar System (Fandom)
Characters
?! Rosetta (ESA Spacecraft)
?! Philae (ESA Spacecraft)
?! Juno (NASA Spacecraft)
?! New Horizons (NASA Spacecraft)

?! Second Viking Invasion of England (1013-1016) RPF
Characters
?! Cnut the Great
?! Eadric Streona
?! Edmund II Ironside
?! Emma of Normandy

?! Barnaby - Crockett Johnson (Comic)
Characters
?! Barnaby Baxter
?! Jackeen J. O'Malley
?! Barnaby's Father
?! Jane Shultz


(I also may have gotten inappropriately passionate in the evidence post about why space robot fandom cannot be neatly categorized as Anthropomorphism or RPF because that is an inappropriate place to make a judgement call about the edges of personhood.)

(I was going to nom Cope/Marsh again but somebody else got there first.)

(Edmund Ironside and Emma of Normandy are SO EPIC tho why are there not, like, ten classic movies a Marvel superhero and at least two cable series about them already)

(I have no idea what I am requesting I'll have to look at the tagset first.)

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September 14th, 2016 06:49 pm - Rivers of London
So in other news, I have been reading all of the Rivers of London fic lately. (I am somewhere between step five and step eight, given the vagaries of fandom.)

(It started with giving in and reading Wizardry by Consent because I am so there for any pairing that is "effectively immortal, super competent person who is starting to lose their footing in the world / middle-aged vanilla mortal with a rock-solid certainty of who they are but still ready for a little wonder in their life." Unfortunately this is not quite the dynamic in canon but I guess it was close enough. Also I have already read all the Three/Brig and Joe/Methos in the world so it wasn't like I could go elsewhere.

Also! A story about police that is fundamentally critical of policing-as-practiced and is all about community policing and oversight and restorative justice sort of stuff! I have been unable to read in most of the classic buddy-cop fandoms lately because of discomfort with narrative glorification of the system that doesn't address its glaring problems, but this story worked.)

But, anyway, I moved on from that one and am now busy reading all the rest of the fanfic, but I ran out of novel-length ones already so I just got the first volume of canon out from the library. Before I started reading it, I thought I would try to summarize what I have learned via osmosis. For science.

Possibly spoilers for all of Rivers of London? IDK I haven't read it. )

I think the part where Peter and Thomas get married and have apprentices of their own is fanon but honestly at this point I am not sure. Peter likes architecture and Harry Potter. Thomas likes rugby and botany. They love each other very much. That part is canon. The end, except that there is a new book coming out soon.

And now I get to find out how wrong that all was! \o/

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September 13th, 2016 06:25 pm
I think nearly everyone involved (including me) misunderstood the point of timestamp meme, but one of them did result in me writing an actual fic (??) so here is more Kent Parson:

Healthy & Straightforward Communication Skills (2915 words) by melannen
Fandom: Check Please! (Webcomic)
Rating: General Audiences
Relationships: Past Kent/Jack - Relationship, Eric Bittle/Jack Zimmermann
Characters: Kent "Parse" Parson, Eric Bittle, Jack Zimmermann
Additional Tags: Meet the Ex, Pie, bitty's baking magic, very minor suicide references, Timestamp
Series: Part 2 of Of Pies and Kent
Summary: From a DW request: The first time Bitty and Kent are in the same room after Jack and Kent start talking again. (This is in continuity with "Bless Your Heart, Kent Parson" but you don't need to read that first.)

**

Also it is apparently Yuletide Time already. I am not super-excited about noms this year because all the small fandoms I've been excited about lately are ones I am 100% sure will get other noms. (Well. Maybe Barnaby? But I couldn't write it and I think my chances of offers are v. v. low.) If anybody has something they really want but can't nom, lmk.

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