(no subject)

Sep. 25th, 2017 11:22 pm
pauamma: Cartooney crab holding drink (Default)
[personal profile] pauamma
So, earlier today, the neighborhood cat paid a visit to my apartment, meowing up a storm, purring, demanding pettings, and scent-marking everything in sight. I suspect I may give in and contribute to feeding it, if and when I can figure out where its habitual feeding place is. (I'm doomed, right?)

Culture Consumed Monday

Sep. 26th, 2017 01:04 am
vass: Jon Stewart reading a dictionary (books)
[personal profile] vass
A fortnight after the last 'weekly' update.

Books

Read JY Yang's ~5K word story Auspicium Melioris Aevi, which they wrote about in this blog post. It's about clones and history repeating/not-repeating and the goals of a university education under capitalism and, most of all, about Singapore. Judging from the author's post about their story, clearly it was received best by people who knew Singapore well, which I don't, but I liked it a lot anyway and I think if you liked Cyteen you might well like this too. PS: I do NOT ship Clone Lee Kuan Yew and Clone Vladimir Putin, I DON'T, I REFUSE, you CAN'T MAKE ME. /o\

Read Heather Rose Jones' The Mystic Marriage, the sequel to Daughter of Mysteries. It's even less of a conventional romance genre novel than its predecessor. Where Daughter of Mysteries was in alternating third person between Margerit and Barbara, The Mystic Marriage shuttles between Antuniet and Jeanne's points of view and also Barbara's and Margerit's. Which is awesome if you prefer your romance couples to keep developing after the end of 'their' novel and not just show up briefly for a statically happy cameo in the next book to help the new couple, but a little confusing if you were expecting more of the couple you thought would be the main characters in the new novel. Not that Margerit and Barbara aren't there to help the new couple, but their stories continue too. I like this.

I also like how difficult and prickly Antuniet is, and Barbara's own flaws emerging a bit stronger than they did in the previous book (n.b. she's still awesome.) And I liked the competence porn -- Margerit's academic skills (including collegiality), Barbara's combination of court intrigue, law, and security, Antuniet's alchemy and research, and Jeanne's social engineering. That last in particular -- I don't think it's that common for books to show (rather than tell) that particular skill, not in detail. The actual work part of it, maintaining connections and introducing people and keeping track of who needs what and how that fits in with who else. Showing the role it has in Jeanne's life and how good she is at it gave a lot more force to Jeanne and Antuniet's extrovert/introvert issues, which also unusually, involved the introvert inadvertently not meeting the extrovert's needs. (The other way around gets a lot more attention in articles and books, to the point where it's become kind of a cliche.)

Read Rebecca Fraimow's fantasy novella Suradanna and the Sea, which is... bittersweet doesn't seem like the right word. Poignant, maybe. A very nice combination of sweet, charming, and ouch. With the emphasis on the sweet. Mostly. If you like Avatar: The Last Airbender and Legend of Korra you might like this. I kind of wish I'd read it earlier (my own damn fault -- it came out in December last year) so I could have requested it for Yuletide or Trick or Treat.

Fandom

Read [archiveofourown.org profile] sadlikeknives's Stones Could Fly, which was a Yuletide fic three years ago, for 'Dixon's Girl' from Dessa's A Badly Broken Code, and is the spy/secret agent AU for that song I had no idea I needed, and the codenames are all references to the other songs by Dessa.

Rereading [archiveofourown.org profile] bessemerprocess's The 28th Amendment, a pundit and journalist RPF AU set after the 2008 US federal election which reads very, very differently in 2017. :(

TV and Movies

In honour of the Ghibli festival, went to see Kiki's Delivery Service in the cinema (in Japanese with English subtitles), which was a good way to see it for the first time (yeah, I know, absolute latest as usual.) I loved the art and story, but could have done with a lot fewer panty shots -- zero sounds about right. Also I'd have liked to hear Jiji talk one more time at the end, just to be certain Kiki could hear him again, as that was worrying me. I didn't know the story, so the bit about magic and artist's block was unexpected and hit me really hard.

Games

Played some Pokemon Go early on in the fortnight. Beat a gym through judicious use of revives. So many revives.

Was sufficiently stressed that I reinstalled Stardew Valley on my computer. It's just turned winter in year 1, and my character is incredibly sick of cranberries.

Podcasts

Tried a bunch of fiction podcasts: Juno Steel, Death at a Low Price, Whatever Happened to Jonathan Green. I liked Juno Steel okay, but made the mistake of listening to one of the non-Juno standalone Penumbra Podcast episodes, and it fucked me up pretty badly. This is why I don't listen to a lot of horror. I found Death at a Low Price a bit rambling for my taste and also didn't like the sound effects. I liked Whatever Happened to Jonathan Green quite a lot (but there are only two episodes out and it's on hiatus)

Perfume

Testing more of the BPAL imps from Kab. cut )

Garden

Got a couple of small, unexpected capiscums from the plant that's still trucking on. I haven't really been doing anything with the garden, but there it is anyway.

Other

Painted my fingernails in Pride stripes, so anyone who couldn't already tell just by looking at me what my position on Australian marriage equality is CAN NOW.

Activism

Voted in the Non-Binding Plebiscite On Whether People Like Me Should Have Civil Rights. I voted yes, which only shows that my queerness and transness mean I'm unable to be properly objective on these issues. (That's sarcasm.) Did other activist-ish stuff on this issue (a lot, actually -- it kind of ate all the time I'd been planning to spend going to Fringe) and also went to my local branch meeting of my political party of choice.

Which just goes to show what a deleterious effect 2017 is having on my behaviour, common sense, and happiness. I dont want to go to branch meetings. I want to make vegetable/pasta stews, and eat them while reading lesbian Ruritanian romance and/or playing farming sims with retro graphics. I want to mess about rearranging deck chairs on my computer's window manager settings and not even think of politics or natural disasters or misery. But 2017 does not care what I or anyone else wants.
fairestcat: naked woman reading. vintage (Reading)
[personal profile] fairestcat
I've been doing less book bingeing and more reading of fic over the last month, which is probably, ultimately a happy balance for me.

Liberty and Other Stories (Prosperity, #2-4, 6) - Alexis Hall - ★ ★ ★ ★

A diverse series of stories expanding on the Prosperity universe, both before and after the events of Prosperity. read more )

The New Born Year - Kris Ripper ★ ★

I love this series, and I really liked getting to know Ally better, but I found this a difficult and unpleasant read. read more )

Full of Briars (October Daye, #9.3) - Seanan McGuire ★ ★ ★

I'm several books behind in this series, and figured this was a good way to dip back in. Because Quentin. Who is awesome. read more )

Gun To My Head - Dira Lewis ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Reread. First read April 5, 2017. Second read April 6, 2017. Third read now, by which you might infer that I really fucking love this book. read more )

The Mystic Marriage (Alpennia, #2) - Heather Rose Jones ★ ★ ★ ★

I continue to adore this series. This second installment continues to follow Barbara and Margerit's lives, while expanding the focus to two characters who played a supporting role in the first book. read more )

The Element of Fire (Ile-Rien, #1) - Martha Wells ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Reread. I think I first read this sometime in 2010.

This is a secondary-world fantasy set in the approximate equivalent of 17th Century France only with both sorcery and Fae creatures.read more )

Point of Dreams (Astreiant, #2) - Melissa Scott & Lisa A. Barnett ★ ★ ★ ★

In some ways the murders are the least interesting part of this book. They matter, and they drive the plot, but it's the thematic stuff going on around and in cause of the murders that I found most interesting.

This is a book about relationships, and the ways they are seen and controlled by society and societal pressures. read more )

Seven Summer Nights - Harper Fox ★ ★ ★ ★

This was not the book I expected it to be, but I quite enjoyed the book it turned out to be.

This is, as the cover copy stated, a just-post-WWII historical romance between an archaeologist and a vicar, both of whom came back from the war changed. It's about two men trying to fit back into roles and ways of life they no longer fit. read more )

Bound to Be a Groom (Regency Reimagined, #1) - Megan Mulry

DNF.

It's queer, kinky, poly, historical erotica. I'm pretty much THE target audience for this book. And I gave up at 13% read. read more )

Death by Silver (Julian Lynes and Ned Mathey, #1) - Melissa Scott & Amy Griswold ★ ★ ★ ★

This was a rougher read than I expected from the ad copy. Good, but at times decidedly difficult.

This is a queer, steampunk murder mystery, but that's not really what it's about.

What it actually is is a book about institutionally-sanctioned bullying and abuse and the different ways in which adult survivors of childhood trauma cope with their past. read more )

Because I have to put it somewhere:

Sep. 24th, 2017 02:10 am
randomling: A wombat. (Default)
[personal profile] randomling
KJ Charles protagonists by Hogwarts house.

Gryffindor: Stephen Day, Archie Curtis, Richard Vane, Silas Mason, Nathaniel Roy, Jonah Pastern, Simon Feximal

Ravenclaw: Dominic Frey, Rowley Green, Crispin Tredarloe, Saul Lazenby

Hufflepuff: Harry Vane, Lord Gabriel "Ash" Ashleigh, Clement Talleyfer, Ned Hall, Ben Spenser, Martin St Vincent, Robert Caldwell

Slytherin: Lord Crane, David Cyprian, Daniel da Silva, Justin Lazarus, Julius Norreys, Francis Webster, Theodore Swann, Randolph Glyde

Which means we have:

Gryffindor/Slytherin x4, Gryffindor/Ravenclaw x2, Gryffindor/Hufflepuff x2, Ravenclaw/Hufflepuff x2, Ravenclaw/Slytherin x1, Hufflepuff/Slytherin x3

Fandom changes you

Sep. 23rd, 2017 05:30 pm
reginagiraffe: Stick figure of me with long wavy hair and giraffe on shirt. (Default)
[personal profile] reginagiraffe
MrGiraffe has been on an Agatha Christie binge (mostly Poirot). At lunch today, he mentioned that the Agatha Christie Estate hired someone to write new Poirot mysteries and he was wondering whether he was going to read them.

He concluded "no" because the writer would have to :
A. write a mystery plot as well as Christie
B. get all of Poirot's quirks right and
C. get the details of the age he was in correct

and he didn't think it was possible.

My response?

Off the top of my head, I can think of a dozen fanfic writers who'd be up to the task.

(no subject)

Sep. 23rd, 2017 06:46 am
azurelunatic: A glittery black pin badge with a blue holographic star in the middle. (Default)
[personal profile] azurelunatic
Thursday was family games night, with pizza. [personal profile] sithjawa joined, as well as the partner's large array of siblings and their spouses/etc.

After games were done, my partner showed me Who Framed Roger Rabbit? out of the "You haven't seen that yet?" queue. And we watched more of The Orville, and I tested out my stand mixer by making some cookies.

Friday, in honor of the equinox, I baked a sweet cardamom loaf. Then we did a shopping run, and my partner made dinner.

These past two days have involved a lot of small gas-powered motors around. Partner has summoned a yard maintenance company to take care of some of the tree, bush, weed, and tenacious invasive morning glory things that the ex neglected in the interminable six months leading up to departure. It's been loud, but is so much better looking now. Though there are still some more things left for today, like the stack of lichen-covered branches in the driveway.
ysobel: (Default)
[personal profile] ysobel
1. Hillary Clinton is coming here to speak, as part of her book tour. I have a ticket, which also apparently means a copy of her book, *and* since my dad is a Very Big Donor, I get to meet her. Pay, I'm not as excited about this as I was about George Takei, but still. (N.B. I am also feeling ridiculously defensive about this, so please no HRC-bashing in comments. I probably don't need to say that but I'd rather preempt any drama)

2. Getting close to done with the bunny I'm making for the now-12-year-old kid with fop who's still in the hospital. I have an ear I'm satisfied with, so just have to make a second ear and then attach them. And then do the trach, if I can figure that out. "

3. Getting my first delta. Er, okay, that requires explanation. There's a subreddit called cmv -- change my view -- where people post their opinion on something to get other people to chsnge their mind. (Basically, "I believe X, and it's an unpopular opinion and I'd like to believe something else, so persuade me otherwise".) If you feel a comment has changed your view, whether or not you're the op in the thread, you can award a delta, kind of like a kudos; this is separate from the upvoting/downvoting that all Reddit uses. I've posted a few things ere or there as responses, but mostly they've been un-responded to, much less in-delayed, until tonight. Which is trivial and yet super exciting.

4. The realization that I can order another tube hydration system thing (like what I use at night) for choir rehearsals. Hydrating during choir is awkward because I need both hands for the iPad, which means my drink has to go in my hip pack drink holder thingie, but the ridiculously straws I have aren't long enough to reach without me holding the bottom of the cup; and it's really hard for me to get the cup out when there's an iPad in the way. But this tubing system is stiff enough that I can get it to my mouth -- I'd gotten it for bed because the water bottle hangs above me and the tubing hangs down from it and I just need to move it laterally to get it to my mouth, but this particular system is nicely sturdy enough that I can hold it pointing up without it immediately flipping -- and then I wouldn't have to get the *bottle* out, just wave the tubing in my face, and otherwise have it in my lap within easy reach.

5. The fact that Phantom Tollbooth is available in kindle format. 😍 It's been ages since I read it and it's just as charming and wacky as I remember. (And it has a great first sentence: "There was once a boy named Milo who didn’t know what to do with himself—not just sometimes, but always.")

US politics

Sep. 20th, 2017 09:33 am
cesy: "Cesy" - An old-fashioned quill and ink (Default)
[personal profile] cesy
Hope not Hate is coming to the US, to counter the rise of international hate groups. American friends, you can sign up here.

Long day!

Sep. 17th, 2017 02:46 am
azurelunatic: Polyamory infinite hearts, in a polymer-like grid (polymer)
[personal profile] azurelunatic
Breakfast with partner and metamour Leopard Girl.

Seanan McGuire event in Silverdale. We brought tribute, and were briefly Seanan's favorite. (Diet Dr Pepper and candy corn. Seanan is a being of predictable tastes.)

Mini muffin tin quest!

Partner made a note they should chat with our mutual friend in London about stuff. Hooray, viable communities.

Dinner for the extended polycule, with many dishes thanks to Trader Joe's. (Rice, orange chicken with extra zesty sauce but no carrots since we ran out, BBQ pork buns, pot stickers, spring rolls, and green beans. The rice and green beans weren't pre-packaged, and I do a little customization to the chicken by adding orange peel and scallions. The gyoza and bao steam over the rice, and the spring rolls could bake with the chicken. The green beans start frozen and get gently fried with seasonings. Usually it's butter and Montreal steak seasoning, but Stray Puppy Girl is very lactose intolerant, and Leopard Girl dislikes red pepper. So I went for sesame oil, garlic, onion, pepper, salt, ginger, a packet of soy sauce that needed using, and the excess teriyaki sauce from the other night. It turned out well. To my immense gratification, my partner really likes all the iterations of the green beans that I have made so far. Generally they disappear immediately.)

Club night. Without going into excessive detail, one of the groups near the people I was with were having a hilarious time, and kept setting each other off giggling. That prompted our group to giggle. The glee was infectious.

Everyone is spending the night. We hauled the camping pads out of the alleged guest room (it is currently not in a state for guests as my textiles have exploded all over it) and they're set up next to the futon in case it turns from cozy to crowded in the middle of the night. Things are well set up for breakfast, and there should be cheesecake at some point (thus the mini muffin tins).

Trick Or Treat Exchange 2017

Sep. 17th, 2017 07:01 pm
vass: Jon Stewart reading a dictionary (books)
[personal profile] vass
Hi, Ghostwriter or Ghostartist!

Thank you for writing for me, and I hope it's fun for you. I'm heavily cribbing this letter from last year's (which was heavily cribbed from the year before that) because writing Dear Writer letters breaks my brain. /o\

more )

Fucking ableist bullshit

Sep. 13th, 2017 09:51 pm
ysobel: A man wielding a kitchen knife and making an adorable yelling face (rage)
[personal profile] ysobel
I have for whatever reason been on a horror movie kick lately. Because sometimes it's fun watching people be horribly surprised when a ghost summoning in a haunted mansion goes horribly wrong or whatever. Especially when they do stupid stuff along the way.

One movie had a somewhat satisfying ending (bad guy gets trapped in a room rull of angry ghosts of people that were killed as a result of his douchenaggery!) in a way that was completely antithetical to the setup (spooky ghosts that were scaring the protagonist and family, are ... suddenly friendly to her wtf).

But the one I just finished watching makes me want to *kick things*. And I don't know what's worse, the fact that it was written this way or the fact that I saw it coming.

CW: anti-autism wtfery. Also spoilers for unnamed movie.

Read more... )

That beauty and the beast project I'm playing with? I keep being tempted to make the Beast autistic, and the enchantress or fairy or whoever cursed him into beast form just totally misread him (or he said something true but impolite and pissed her off) and is an asshole for what she did, or something.

I worry about doing it wrong, because -- as much as I suspect I have some aspergers-y traits, I am totally not autistic, and risk falling into cliches -- but at least I wouldn't be *points upward* THAT fucking wrong