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March 9th, 2010 08:45 pm - Where did I put my roller skates?
Alternating between reading Bujold fic and Winter Olympics RPS has me wanting a story about elite-level Zero-Gravity Athletics competition. The Extra-Atmospheric Olympic Committees require that ZG athletes spend at least thirty percent of their time in more than .5g, which is of course the source of much shenanigans, angst and H/C.

Also, I think one of the main characters of the story started their career as an Abolympic competitor (that's a sort of "special" competition limited to people who use no or only minor biomodifications, chemical enhancements or technological augmentation; the real competitors think of it as kind of the cute little sibling, but it has a rabid following of its own, 'rabid' often being the operative term). As a result of a major practice injury last season, said character was disqualified from the Abolympics, and made the unusual choice of moving to standard competition rather than retiring, and is having a lot of trouble fitting in. Being kind of an asshole isn't helping. The other main character is one of the only elite-level XA athletes to have grown up on an actual planet and gets a lot of crap about it (incluing constant suspicion that XA judges are biased against planetaries), but refuses to be anything but sparkly and peppy and is the favorite of nearly all the planetary fans who follow XA sport. Character also actually enjoys having to spend time in grav (despite having the same ostopenia and asthenia adaptation difficulties that are common to ZG athletes), and whenever there's a competition near a settled planet is constantly trying to get fellow athletes to go snowboarding and ice-skating.

...that would actually slot right in to my existing space opera universe. And the established FTL physics I have there would add the extra layer that anyone competing in intersystem leagues would have chosen to accept the temporal isolation that comes with regular relativistic accelaration... The Galactic Olympics are held every four years standardized time, but most of the athletes on the competition circuit would've only aged about two-three years in that time - and another regulation is that they are *required* to have at least 18 months subjective time between Olympic entries.

>_< I am going to spend the next few days writing this story in my head, I can tell. LIKE I NEEDED ANOTHER STORY TO WRITE. Somebody else offer to pick up the bunny, please, so I don't have to??

(19 comments | Reply)


November 14th, 2009 12:54 am - Statistics!
SO the thing to do while waiting for yuletide assignments to go out, apparently, is statistics.

(Have I mentioned lately that I love fandom?)

And since I requested dreamwidth/fandom fic, I thought I'd run some numbers on Dreamwidth and fandom. I moved here at beta, and settled in pretty quickly, and it's been really hard, from my cozy little spot here among you all, to tell what actually *was* going on, in respect to fandom moving here.

But when I was going through all the Dear Writer posts being linked in the [livejournal.com profile] yuletide community over at lj, I kept noticing that there were actually quite a *lot* of people who were linking their letters from their DW accounts instead of their LJs, and I was wondering if there really were a lot, or if it was an illusion based around what I wanted, and was expecting, to see. And then it occurred to me that this might actually be a pretty good metric of how fandom actually *is* moving: yuletide participation is probably as close as we can get to a real cross-section of people who are active in the sort of fandom that is on journal sites, and it seems like the site people link in their letters would be the site they consider their primary home, regardless of whether they crosspost and how.

So, since I was looking at them all anyway, I starting tallying which sites they were each on. And then I gave in and took a more-or-less proper random sample.

The Procedure! )

The Results! )

The Analysis! )

The Raw data! )

And, of course, the other thing that became inescapable is people really *suck* at writing accessible link text. Opera (my browser of choice - which btw worked perfectly with both yuletide signup & ao3, unlike other browsers I can name) has a built-in tool that will pull out all the links in a page, sort them by either text, location, or url, and let you do various things with them. It is very useful; I use it a lot around this time of year, in fact, because I can download large amounts of fic from index posts very quickly in order to read offline.

I am so glad I don't have to use something similar all the time, like people with vision, processing, or dexterity impairments often do. I'm not always perfect with writing useful link text, but I'm trying to remember to be better; someone on my reading page recently linked to a survey saying uninformative link text is the #1 internet accessibility issue, and I believe it now. I didn't run as strict statistics here, but the Opera tool made it very easy to run rough numbers: guess, on average, how many fans out of 25 on a page used link text that actually gives any useful information out of context. Go on, guess!

Something like 80% use some direct variation on "here". Nearly all the rest are something equally unhelpful, along the lines of "My letter" or "Dear Writer" or "on my journal", with a few that are just bare urls with no link text at all, and maybe, if you're lucky, *one* per page that actually says something like "fanwriter1's letter" or "fandom 1, fandom 2, fandom 3" that would actually maybe let someone identify it out of context.

I knew link text was a problem: I'd just never quite been smacked in the face with just *how* useless so much of it is. Put something in your link text that will let people identify it out of context, folks!

(22 comments | Reply)


November 6th, 2005 01:38 pm - I am a leaf on the wind.
The trees have all turned over the past week. We have four maples in our yard, and it's so *pretty* that I have no motivation to rake the leaves yet, so the whole yard is the approximate colors of this icon. I have this image in my head of Arisia and Hal Jordan under a green pavilion, the roof covered with red and orange and purple maple leaves, the yellow ones drifting through and around them like sakura petals in anime ... alas that my art skills could not do it justice.

***

I signed up for [livejournal.com profile] yuletide t'other day; wish me luck. I'm just waiting anxiously for my assignment. Cryptic doublespeak and random enthusiasm and terrified burbling: Yuletide is like a chance to suddenly get more of all the books I loved as a kid, without having to write it myself; whlie at the same time I get to write the same thing for somebody else, only in fandoms that aren't so dear to me that I can't write them. Whee! Only now, I'm afraid that I volunteered for a few that I won't be qualified to write, o alas! Everybody is posting their proclamations about what you *must* be willing to do ion orer to volunteer for a fandom. Me? While I'd be overjoyed if somebody wrote a perfect story tailored to my tastes, personal history, and corpus of work, these are fandoms that are mostly virgin territory for fic, and I'm satisfied with anything that mostly fulfills the request and is well-written. If I get actual Lucky Starr fic or Riddle-master fic? I'm happy, man.

***

I found it interesting that when we went to see Serenity, all of the previews, and the movie, were about a scrappy band of rebels trying to overthrow a supposedly beneficial tyrrany which maintains power through lies and propaganda. Well, all of them except Narnia, and I don't actually remember how the White Witch kept power, althought the revolution theme is the same. It's an interesting trend, after a stretch where most of the big SF epics were about either maintaining the status quo or fighting off an outside evil.

***

We've just got home from a visit to my aunt and uncle's to play with my little cousins, the Duchess and the Kangaroo . If I'd stayed home, I would have gone outside to play in the leaves, so instead I went out in my uncle's yard with the Duchess. We played with leaves and jumped and looked at trees and pulled apart acorns (I have been noticing acorns a lot more this year. The road behind the train station is covered with bright orange scars from acorns being crushed; it looks like pumpkin meat. I tempted to try acorn flour someday) and picked up an entire skirtful of pinecones, which Grandma put in a plastic bag to take home. We also looked at a big Marbled Orb Weaver. The Duchess had an eww response but when I refused to act scared she came up and looked at him a little. She wouldn't sing Eensy Weensy spider with us, though. Or I'm a Little Teapot. And I got to meet the Kangaroo for the first time! )

Speaking of that, I need to stop being a coward and accept one of the many special-ed sub calls I get every night. But I just want to get in a few standard jobs first. I have another one at a high school tomorrow, which means getting up at o-dark-hundred again. I should post a subbing update tomorrow afternoon, if I survive.

Current Music:: John Williams - Leia's theme
Current Mood:: [mood icon] cold

(7 comments | Reply)


May 7th, 2004 04:47 pm - Sands!
I can't believe nobody else has done this yet. Seriously. I've lost my faith in slashdom again. (Crossover. Set several years pre-movie, season sevenish or eightish)


I was just wondering if I could borrow it. Since you kind of shot mine up. )


Bloody britishisms. *stabs*.

Pre-movie, during Book 4:


limp black hair and an oversize T-shirt that said 'Let Me Show You My Magic Wand' )

Current Mood:: [mood icon] violent

(5 comments | Reply)


January 13th, 2004 09:24 am - Something that I'm supposed to be
Dear [livejournal.com profile] stellar_dust:

It is your fault this got written, so you get to tell me what the heck I'm supposed to do with it. Also you can tell me what I was trying to do with the random tense shifts, what is up with the bizarre artsy structure, where the plot ran off to, why it is awful and makes no sense and needs much revision, and why my personal x-files soundtrack seems to be John Denver and the Muppets.

You're welcome.

Loves,
[livejournal.com profile] melannen

PS: Some people would've tried to save their little sister's mind from being taken over by aliens.

Fic: The Rainbow Connection
Fandom: The X-Files
Rating: G
Length: 2400
Spoilers: Through season six
Notes: Lyrics by the Muppets. Quotations at end from Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, by Tom Stoppard. Many thanks to [livejournal.com profile] stellar_dust, who did an absolutely amazing job of telling me what was wrong with this. Even if she is one of Them.
Proposition: The colors red, blue, and green are real. The color yellow is a mystical experience shared by everybody-- Demolish. )

Current Mood:: [mood icon] indescribable
Current Music:: john denver - singing skies and dancing waters

(30 comments | Reply)



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