havocthecat: belly dancers with zils in a circle (hobbies belly dance)
[personal profile] havocthecat
Sometimes you look at a belly dance clothing vendor, admiring the beautiful clothing and considering a purchase because you need a new pair of pants (well, "need" is such a strong word, but "budgeting for a vanity purchase" is longer), but you notice some things:

You say to yourself, "Huh. All those models are really, really, REALLY thin."

REALLY thin.

You notice there are a couple of pictures of slender non-model dancers, and that's pretty cool, and a troupe of slender-to-average non-model dancers, and that's also cool.

Then you keep scrolling down and see that picture of the one non-model dancer wearing their clothes who might be considered larger-than-average has been cut off at the chest. You pause. You click. You see she's got a belly.

She's not fat. She's not plus-sized. Just larger-than-average. With a beautiful stomach, but one that's a little bit bigger than any of the other pictures that are actually visible on the site.

There aren't any plus-sized belly dancers on this site either. AT ALL. Which is weird. Because there are plenty of plus-sized belly dancers who are happy to buy dance wear. Especially custom-made dance wear.

That's when you realize that this clothing vendor doesn't want lardasses like you sullying their goods with your impure body.

So you close the tab and remember the name of the vendor, because you won't sully their bank account with your fat-stained money either.

(Edit: I don't have to add an "ALL body types are beautiful" disclaimer, do I? Or mention that the issue isn't that there are thin models, but that the one person on the largest size of the bell curve was CUT OFF below her chest in the picture. Let's face it, belly dance is a hobby where most of your customers aren't going to be model-thin.)
umadoshi: (StarCraft - Zerg symbol)
[personal profile] umadoshi
--My sleep has continued to be all over the place. Last night I managed to get to bed around 1 AM or so (IIRC) and didn't get up until 11:30 today; the night before, I was in bed by 1:15 so I could get up at a reasonable hour and [dreamwidth.org profile] scruloose, [dreamwidth.org profile] ginny_t, Kas, and I could go raspberry picking, and I managed, at a generous estimate, two hours of sleep. FUN.


--I had these notions of finishing a fic for this round of [dreamwidth.org profile] smallfandomfest, but it wraps up at the end of this month, so...ha ha ha no. ^^; But hey, I got it started and made some actual progress during [dreamwidth.org profile] nanodownunder, and unfilled [dreamwidth.org profile] smallfandomfest prompts remain available for claiming past the round when they're prompted, so it's not like I won't have another chance. I just liked the idea of doing it now.


--I haven't taken pictures yet, but when we were out watering the garden a couple of days ago, there were the beginnings of blossoms on one of the two clematis plants!


--Amidst all the political awfulness, personal stuff, cute gifs, and book-blogger chat, my Twitter feed has been full of people being gleeful about "Dream Daddy: A Dad Dating Simulator"--enough so that I briefly pretended I don't have something like 100 unplayed games and can't remember the last time I played anything and went to check it out. I was saved by an impulse buy by the fact that the game's currently Windows- and Mac-only; I do still have a Windows partition for games, but realistically, I also can't remember the last time I booted into it for anything but StarCraft. (And that wasn't terribly recently. I did buy at least the first of the SCII Nova mission packs, but I don't remember how far I got.) (Separate parenthetical: I've preordered the remastered original StarCraft, so for that, booting into Windows will undoubtedly happen. Unless it magically runs under WINE.)


--I need to keep reminding myself that Rogue One is on Netflix until I finally watch it (having literally slept through most of it in the theatre, which was not the movie's fault!). I should also rewatch TFA sometime in the next few months.


--It turns out Black Sails is shorter than I'd been thinking in two ways: I'd somehow had the impression it's five seasons, not four, and I also hadn't realized the seasons are so short (eight to ten episodes each, I think?). All of a sudden bumping it up to basically the top of my to-watch list (which seems to be a good plan, judging from how many people I know are in love with the show) is a way less daunting prospect.

Linkspam: fannish/geeky, misc.

Jul. 24th, 2017 11:19 pm
umadoshi: (lilacs 01)
[personal profile] umadoshi
Fannish/Geeky Things

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] sgamadison, an update on Stargate Origins: be aware that the new digital episodes are only going to be ten minutes each.

"A Woman, Explaining Things". [Sarah Gailey on the casting of the thirteenth Doctor]

"Towards a Definition of “Fanfiction”: 3,564 people took our survey. Here’s what we learned". [Fansplaining]

"Does God exist in the Marvel Universe?" [Salon]

"Akiko Higashimura's Princess Jellyfish Manga Ends on August 25". [ANN]


Miscellaneous

"Radical Cartography" is...hard for me to describe. Very cool things with maps...and stuff...?

"All of my work on the “Irish slaves” meme (2015–’16)". In case you ever need to debunk the "but the Irish were slaves too!" crap that some flavors of racists like to whip out.

"Gratitude for Invisible Systems: One way to improve democracy is for more people to appreciate its complex technological underpinnings".

"My Father Spent 30 Years In Prison. Now He's Out". This is lovely and heartbreaking.

"Updated Syllabus for Journalism 101". [McSweeney's]

"This Is How Tough It Can Actually Be To Follow High School Prom Dress Codes". [Buzzfeed]

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] bell, "When Your Teacher Keeps Saying You Can’t Draw Cats, But Your Paintings Are Photorealistic".

"Make a Magical Carpet Cat Hammock With an Old Towel".

"This Guy Spent A Year Exploring The Subculture Of Competitive Punning".

"How to Fall Down". [Lifehacker]

"Sapphic Stories || Around the world". "Sapphic Stories – Around the world does not intend to be a rec list that is ultimate and finalized, but just the beginning of a search for more pluralized stories. There are many other stories out there that we need to look for. Still, I believe that this post could be a nice start so that people can recognize these stories set in the places they grew up in or to know more about what it means to be sapphic in other places. This list contains F/F fiction books, books that have at least one women who feel romantic/sexual attraction to women, short stories, anthologies, and nonfiction about how it is to be LGBT+ in some places of the world."

"tim walker photographs all black cast for alice in wonderland themed pirelli calendar".

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] dine, "Superb Cut Paper Artworks by Pippa Dyrlaga".

Ashes by Amanda Pillar

Jul. 24th, 2017 08:00 am
calissa: A low angle photo of a book with a pair of glasses sitting on top. (Mt TBR)
[personal profile] calissa

Ashes, Amanda Pillar, Graced, Graced series, Venom and Vampires, paranormal romance collection, Earl Grey Editing, tea and books, books and tea

Published: July 2017
Format reviewed: E-book (mobi)
Series: Venom and Vampires collection, Graced #2.2
Genres: Paranormal romance
Source: Author
Reading Challenges: Australian Women Writers Challenge 2017
Available:Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble~ Kobo

Disclaimer: I was provided with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Aria Ash shouldn’t exist

Born to a were mother and vampire father, Aria Ash is the perfect blend of two races, and in their world, that’s a death sentence. Hunted for as long as she can remember, she now hides in plain sight in the city of Skarva, and will do anything to keep her secret safe.

Sebastian Talien is an alpha were with a troubled past. Ever since his pack went rogue and tried to kill three innocent pups, he’s been dedicated to rescuing children in need. Now an invitation has him heading to Skarva, to help a child he thought he’d failed

Ashes is a novella set in the Graced universe, around the same time as Bitten. While I enjoyed reading it, I ultimately had the same issue with it as I did with Captive: I felt its ambition exceeded its scope.

Since Ashes is part of a collection, I assume it’s meant to appeal to new readers. I feel it’s only partially successful on that front. The beginning works quite well, introducing us to the characters and getting us invested in their relationship. However, the Graced universe is a complex one. Worldbuilding elements necessary for understanding the story were given in a kind of infodump in the guise of one character educating and warning another. The character doing the educating also functioned like a deus ex machina, there to make sure certain things happened. While there is context and an implied reason, it sat rather awkwardly and I’m not sure how it would sit for someone new to the series. It is also old information to returning readers, making it a little bit dull to sit through, even if I enjoyed the cameo from that particular character.

That said, I felt Ashes was a much stronger story than Captive. Aria is a wonderfully fiery character. She’s powerful and quick to protect what’s hers. I really enjoyed the way her strength is something that Sebastian finds attractive, rather than seeing it as a threat. Their relationship is likely to be a bit too insta-love for some readers, but it worked for me. The circumstances and the passion between these two dominant characters sold it. The pair are also able to spend more time together than Laney & Wolf did in Captive. This gives their relationship a more solid foundation before the rest of the action really kicks into gear.

I also really enjoyed the development of the city of Skarva. We got to see the Duke of Ravens in Bitten. In Ashes, we get to meet the Duke of Ashes and learn a little more about the other ruling dukes. I liked that each duke has their own motif, providing a distinctive counterpoint to the vampire nobility of Pinton featured in previous books.

There were also plenty of loose ends left and I’m looking forward to discovering which directions will be explored next.

All in all, Ashes was bumpy in places, but an enjoyable read.

Mirrored from Earl Grey Editing.

Linkspam: fannish/geeky, misc.

Jul. 21st, 2017 03:02 pm
umadoshi: (ocean 01)
[personal profile] umadoshi
Fannish/Geeky Things

"Here's how the new Star Wars novels will connect to The Last Jedi: The ‘Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ books will explore details from the history of Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia". I'm just gonna jump down here to Canto Bight: "This collection of four short stories will focus on creatures from the glamorous casino world of Canto Bight, described as the galactic version of Monaco. The book, which hits stores on Dec. 5, will be written by Saladin Ahmed, Rae Carson, Mira Grant, and John Jackson Miller." [Also linked at [dreamwidth.org profile] aftertheendtimes, because awesome news is awesome.]

"Stargate Origins Series to Launch New MGM Digital Platform — Watch Teaser".

"Pacific Rim: Uprising Releases Teaser and Info on a New Crop of Jaegers". [Tor.com] And once again, we have a Jaeger with a slur (same one) in its name. :/

"Jenny, the Doctor’s Daughter, Finally Getting the Doctor Who Spinoff Adventures She Deserves" [in audio drama form]. [The Mary Sue]

"Dick Grayson vs. Toxic Masculinity". [Book Riot] [May 2017]


Miscellaneous

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] wendelah1, "Rape Choreography Makes Films Safer, But Still Takes a Toll on Cast and Crew". [Content warnings: what you'd expect from that headline.]

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] dine, "The Kitten Rental Program is Saving Lives".

"The Lost Picture Show: Hollywood Archivists Can’t Outpace Obsolescence".

"Photobucket Is Holding People's Photos For 'Ransom': The company is now charging a $400 fee to hot-link images — which will break photos on tons of old websites and blogs.". [Buzzfeed]

"The Lost Cookbooks Of Black Chefs".

"Just 19 Fascinating Things About The Hair & Makeup On 'GLOW'". [Buzzfeed]

"How Eyeliner Defines My Womanhood". "My politics and my eyeliner became inseparable. Projecting my own sense of beauty, without shame or hesitation, scared the hell out of my opponents. My look was my armor and my weaponry. / But the fight took its toll. Somewhere in my late teens, I closeted myself again, without particularly noticing that I was doing so. I stopped wearing anything that scanned as feminine. I didn't even own eyeliner for 20 years. And I said nothing when people took me for a straight, cisgender man. [...] I’ve finally recognized, over years of trial and error — mostly error — that a wildly disproportionate amount of anxiety I experience arises from dressing like a man. A couple of years ago, that anxiety was swallowing me whole. I didn’t like who I’d become, and I wanted better for myself and my family. And, thanks to the wealth of information available online, and the supportive trans and queer community I found there, I had finally found the words to describe myself."

"Not in This Day and Age? On “Feisty, Cheeky, and Rebellious” Women in History".

"Cooling the tube – Engineering heat out of the Underground". "One of the biggest problems is a side-effect of what made it possible to dig the deep level tunnels in the first place — namely the very solid and nice to tunnel through London Clay which sits under the city.

In fact, when the early tube tunnels were dug, they were so cool down there that the cool tube was seen as a respite from the summer heat on the surface. Why suffer on a bus in the heat when there’s a cool tube to take instead, said the marketing men.

So why is the Bakerloo line, once the coolest place to be, now a mobile sauna?"
havocthecat: the lady of shalott (Default)
[personal profile] havocthecat
For anyone who might be interested, Pixar has Pixar in a Box on Khan Academy.

It's primarily directed at film writing, but I think it can be used for all types of narrative storytelling. I've been listening to The Art of Storytelling video series.

It starts out with "We are all storytellers," (I'm there still) which I think is an admirable point and has a number of their creators talking about their amateur efforts and how they got started, like Betty and Veronica fashion fanart. :)

It leads to characterization and story structure, and while I don't know that visual language is going to be terribly helpful to us print writers, it might give good ideas for descriptions of scenery to go around dialogue. There are also lessons and activities that you can do, should you choose.

(I can't find closed captions on Khan Academy, though. That's my one quibble thus far.)

One of my favorite pieces of writing advice is still this graphic: Pixar's 22 Rules of Storytelling.

No, I'm not saying they have to be YOUR rules too. I'm just saying I find the list as a useful set of way to help me go through one of my stories and figure out what's not working and what I need to do to make it work. Or sometimes, for me to just let go and stopy worrying at something, and maybe come back to it later.

My Current Podcast Playlist

Jul. 21st, 2017 08:00 am
calissa: (Calissa)
[personal profile] calissa

Podcasts, Earl Grey Editing

I’m a podcast fiend. I find they’re a great way to keep me entertained while I’m doing housework. Over the last few years, I’ve ended up with quite a few shows to listen to. They fall into three broad categories:

Books, Media and Culture

This is far and away the biggest category. It includes podcasts featuring interviews, discussions about fandom, and reviews of books, movies and TV shows.

Fangirl Happy Hour: This Hugo-nominated podcast is hosted by Renay of Lady Business and Ana of The Book Smugglers. They review books, movies and graphic novels, as well as discuss what they’ve been reading or watching more generally. They also talk about the state of SFF fandom and often segue into political commentary and discussions of mental health.

Galactic Suburbia: This Hugo-Award-winning podcast is hosted by Alisa Krasnostein, Tansy Rayner Roberts and Alexandra Pierce. Much like Fangirl Happy Hour, they discuss the state of SFF fandom, albeit from an Australian perspective. The two podcasts occasionally end up in dialogue over vital issues, such as what can be classified as cake. The ladies of GS also discuss the culture they’ve been reading, watching or otherwise consuming.

Not Now, I’m Reading: A new podcast just started by Chelsea of the Reading Outlaw and Kay Taylor Rae which focuses on reviewing genre books and media. As a keen reader of romance, I appreciate that their focus is a little wider than just SFF and the way they’re unapologetic about their passions.

Overinvested: Gavia Baker-Whitelaw and Morgan Leigh Davies review movies, TV shows and comics. Most are genre, though not all. These ladies are savvy critics who really know their stuff and are also not afraid to love material they know is rubbish.

The Skiffy and Fanty Show: This Hugo-nominated podcast is headed up by Shaun Duke and Jen Zink with a large cast of co-hosts. They do multiple segments of varying kinds, including signal boosts, interviews and Torture Cinema (wherein a panel reviews a movie deemed to be awful by pop culture).

Radio Free Fandom: Another new podcast, in which Claire Rousseau interviews guests about their fandoms. I’ve only listened to the first episode so far and am still getting a feel for it.

Reading the End: I usually prefer my podcasts to be solidly genre, but I make an exception for the Demographically-Similar Jennys. Gin Jenny and Whisky Jenny do often discuss and review genre books, but are just as likely to be reviewing contemporary literature. They also discuss their favourite instances of particular tropes and occasionally delve into research on space, the sea and Arctic explorers. At all times, they remain utterly charming.

SFF Yeah: Book Riot’s new SFF podcast. Sharifah and Jenn discuss SFF news and favourite literary tropes. I’m still deciding if this one is for me.

Sheep Might Fly: A podcast of serialised fiction by Tansy Rayner Roberts. Tansy alternates between previously published work and completely new stories. It’s a delight to hear them in Tansy’s own voice.

Tea and Jeopardy: This Hugo-nominated podcast is hosted by Emma Newman. Each of the guests she interviews has a connection to SFF and each interview takes place in a different (fictional) lair arranged by her morally-dubious butler (voiced by Peter Newman). Guests often find themselves in a bit of difficulty as they leave. The fictional framework doesn’t work for everyone, but I find it fun.

The Math of You: This is a relatively recent discovery from me. Lucas Brown interviews a range of guests about the pop culture that influenced them while growing up. Not strictly SFF; this is geekdom in many flavours. Lucas is a warm and enthusiastic interviewer.

The Writer and the Critic: Kirstyn McDermott and Ian Mond review a range of speculative fiction. I initially picked this up due to its Ditmar nomination this year and have liked it enough to keep it on. The contrasting perspectives make it engaging. However, I’m also adverse to spoilers, so haven’t yet delved into many of the episodes.

Gaming

This is the newest category in my podcast list and focuses exclusively on tabletop RPGs (which, I’m sure, surprises no one).

The Gauntlet Podcast: Primarily hosted by Jason Cordova, the podcast interviews game designers and signal boosts RPGs being crowdfunded. The hosts also discuss the games they’ve been playing and what has been inspiring them.

The Gauntlet crew also run several other related podcasts. I’ve not yet listened to +1 Forward, but it has recently been nominated for an ENnie Award. However, I have listened to Pocket-Sized Play. I don’t usually go in for Actual Play podcasts, but I’ve been loving their Monsterhearts campaign, Mercy Falls.

Writing Advice

The last category in my list is short. While I appreciate some measure of discussion about craft and industry, I find too much counterproductive for me (it’s hard enough to mute my inner editor).

Ditch Diggers: Hosted by Mur Lafferty and Matt Wallace. I picked up this one because it was nominated for a Hugo this year and I wanted to judge it fairly. Mur and Matt discuss craft, answer questions and interview other creators. It’s a solid show, though I occasionally find it abrasive in ways that weren’t intended.

Writing Excuses: These short episodes are hosted by Brandon Sanderson, Dan Wells, Mary Robinette Kowal and Howard Tayler. Each season has a distinct theme and guest co-hosts. I appreciate the diversity of voices (though it remains sadly US-centric). Each episode ends with a practical exercise.

 

Altogether, these make up my current playlist. Does anything catch your attention? What would you recommend I check out?

Mirrored from Earl Grey Editing.

Trope Bingo (Round 9) card

Jul. 20th, 2017 01:14 am
umadoshi: (nonfictional feeling (oraclegreen))
[personal profile] umadoshi
This week I caved and requested a [dreamwidth.org profile] trope_bingo card to go with my cards for [dreamwidth.org profile] hc_bingo and [dreamwidth.org profile] seasonofkink. This time I opted to only get prompts from the main set (I just typed "pain set". Hmm), rather than also drawing from the AU, kinks, and/or art sets.

I haven't spent much time going through and thinking in terms of which ones are most workable for me, but there are several I like. Chosen family is one of my favorite things; "huddle for warmth" is one of those reliable classic tropes that I don't think I've ever actually written; I like domestic things, so both curtain fic and food/cooking fit... We'll see.

Anyway, here's my card:
under the cut )
umadoshi: (mermaid (roxicons))
[personal profile] umadoshi
A Pair of Kickstarters

--"Mermaid Hues: A Book of Mermaids" is a project by an artist whose work I enjoyed during Mermay, so I'm glad to see it's being made available for purchase!

--Sparkler Monthly just launched their Kickstarter for year 5: "Twelve more issues of women-oriented, LGBT+ friendly webcomics, light novels, and audio dramas in our digital magazine!" Their Kickstarter page includes a lot of info on the kind of work they do and publish, and links to a free downloadable Sparkler Starter Bundle.

(I do have to note that I'm friends with several of the founders/editors [and have proofread a few of their print volumes], but that means I can tell you with confidence that they bring a LOT of experience and passion to the table as long-term manga-industry professionals and as enthusiastic, thoughtful fans of female-gaze-focused Japanese and Japanese-style media.)


Cute Stuff

"10+ Times Corgis Mixed With Other Breeds, And The Result Was Absolutely Pawsome".

"Columbus Zoo And Aquarium Welcome A Squeaky Little Small-Clawed Otter Pup".

"22 Dogs That Prove We Don’t Deserve Dogs". [Buzzfeed]

[dreamwidth.org profile] naye posted June pics of her LaPerm kitties!

"I’ve Spent Years Photographing Rats To Break The Negative Image Of Rats By Taking Cute Pics Of Them".

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] erinptah, "Senior Cat Was So Grumpy — Until He Became ‘Grandpa’ To Kittens: “I was expecting him to hiss or growl or slink away. But then one of the ginger kittens started licking Mason’s ear, and Mason sort of leaned into it and closed his eyes like it was the most amazing thing ever.”".


Miscellaneous

"Sleeps With Monsters: Stop Erasing Women’s Presence in SFF". [Tor.com]

Aww, yay! Sarah Kurchak is Writer of the Week at The Establishment.

"The Myth of Drug Expiration Dates".

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] alexseanchai, a fascinating piece of poetry/meta and commentary about translation between languages where the speakers of one have oppressed the speakers of the other. It's remarkable.

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] tielan, "5 Easy To Make Homemade Air Conditioners".

"How Clergy Set the Standard for Abortion Care: Fifty years ago, a network of religious leaders helped thousands of women find safe, comfortable ways of having the procedure". [2016]

"'Glow' Star Betty Gilpin: What It's Like to Have Pea-Sized Confidence With Watermelon-Sized Boobs", a piece about becoming comfortable in her body for the first time. (I'm not sure exactly what content notes to put on this; proceed carefully if you have issues tangled up with body image.)[Note: I have not seen Glow, although it's on the LIST OF DOOM.]
havocthecat: the lady of shalott (Default)
[personal profile] havocthecat
ETA: Logged out and gone to sleep. Good night, all!

I'm going to be trying to figure out what city I should be setting my urban fantasy in. (Or at least, what it should be an analogue to, geography-wise.)

I'll be on Discord for a couple of hours, if anyone wants to join me:

https://discord.gg/w9PK3Yg

(This time I'll remember to edit the post to say when I log off Discord!)
umadoshi: (Feed logo (from Mira Grant's site))
[personal profile] umadoshi
In a shocking development, I'm going to try going to bed now (before midnight) rather than my more usual 2-3 AM. I can't even pretend to myself that there's any chance I'll produce any wordcount tonight, so trying to sleep seems like the right call even if it's wildly out of character.

PSA: the ebook of Feed (Newsflesh book 1) is currently on sale at all kinds of retailers, including the Canadian Kobo site, if you haven't tried it yet and feel at all inclined to fill my heart with joy by reading it and meeting Georgia Mason. (Here's my rec post for the series.)

As it happens, now is an extra-good time to pick up any of [dreamwidth.org profile] seanan_mcguire(/Mira Grant)'s books or support her Patreon: her beloved female Maine Coon, Alice, is extremely ill. ;_;
umadoshi: (facepalm - cat)
[personal profile] umadoshi
--My brain is refusing to settle on much of anything. It feels like a mix of my usual lack of focus with a few scattered side notes of...not impending anxiety, but flickers of it trying to settle in. (In a couple of cases I know that the anxiety is about, but can't shake the sense that it may be justified, which makes it harder to deal with. I may wind up having to send an email or two of the "I honestly don't know if you're mad at me and I'm picking up on it or if my brain is making it up wholesale or if I'm picking up on other stresses from you and my brain's misattributing them" [and the later makes inquiring much worse, because if someone is worn down or stressed because of unrelated things, I don't want to add "oh, and please help me regulate my possibly-irrational emotions" to their plate].)


--For the past several nights my sleep cycle was even worse than usual, resulting in far too little sleep, and last night/this morning some part of my subconscious took charge and I didn't really wake up until almost 2 PM today. o_o Fortunately I had the rewrite that was due today basically finished, so I just had to give it a final polish and read-through. And this afternoon Jinksy was randomly extra cuddly and came to snuggle on my lap at my desk twice while I was reading the paper and working.


--This evening [dreamwidth.org profile] scruloose and I got some gardening done. I deadheaded some annuals; he took down the "prey TV" birdfeeder (because of this); we moved the tomato plants around a bit so the smaller ones will get more light; we added some height to a couple of stackable tomato cages; and we put down mulch in the perennial bed and around the two lilacs (in the latter case, in order to clear the encroaching grasses as much as anything else). The Sensation lilac is thriving in the face of getting actual care from us! It's significantly larger than it was at the beginning of spring. (Why, it's as if pruning, fertilizing, consistent watering, and putting lime down makes a difference!) And the lone Sungold tomato plant is growing rapidly, and still far bigger than any of the others. (Even after it lost a stalk [?] today. We moved it, and once it was away from the others two stalks weren't nearly supported enough, but weren't outright falling over...and yet in the time it took [dreamwidth.org profile] scruloose to get some ties ready, one of them said "fuck it" and snapped. *sighs* At least it didn't have wee tomatoes on it.)


--Hey, remember how, in Toronto, I bought orange Enthusiast Fluevogs in orange because the purple had been discontinued? Guess what just came out in a new purple colorway for the new season? *facepalm* Fortunately, I don't like this purple version nearly as well as the discontinued one. (And also, the orange--which I really do like!--were noticeably on sale, so even if the new purple had been out, it would've meant not getting either pair this trip, not getting the purple instead.) But part of me is still just like "...really? Really?"

Doctor Who (and St. Trinian's)

Jul. 17th, 2017 10:59 am
havocthecat: polly (red-haired geek with glasses) and celia (blonde loner) of st. trinian's (st trinians polly/celia)
[personal profile] havocthecat
The best part of the Doctor Who casting announcement is that it opens up EVEN MORE amazing possibilities for horrifyingly beautiful St. Trinian's crossovers.

"Oh, Beverly!" called Miss Fritton from her office, leaning over and waving one hand. Beverly could see one her out of the corner of one eye.

"Yeah, miss!"

"What's that little knobbly thingummy you're pointing at the door?"

"It's a sonic screwdriver, miss!"

"What's it for?"

"Nothing, miss!" There was Dalek invasion and the First Years were busy lobbing explosives from the tower while Beverly - the Doctor, really, but she'd been undercover for years and thought of herself as Beverly still - remodulated the alarm system to broadcast a frequency that would short-circuit their disruptor beams. The Daleks, not the First Years.

Though Beverly privately thought the First Years infinitely more dangerous to let loose upon the human race than the Daleks, but she did have standards after all, and centuries of enmity with the Daleks to uphold.

"So what you're saying," said Miss Fritton, appearing in her doorway with an empty bottle of vodka in one hand, "is that we're out of vodka and you forgot to stock up, is that it?"

"Get the gin, miss," said Beverly, holding back a sigh.
umadoshi: (Killjoys - Johnny 01 (inawhirl_icons))
[personal profile] umadoshi
I had theories about writing an actual post or two this weekend, but then the super-wordy (half-volume) of a Hana to Yume series* that's due tomorrow devoured every trace of brain power I had, apparently. OTOH, I have a draft, and once this is in I'll be back on track post-travel.

(That said, I'm already dreading the potential length and intensity of the fall bout of Casual Job and really hoping to actually get ahead on my freelance stuff, insofar as that's possible. *fingers crossed*)

Fannish/Geeky Things

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] spikedluv, "Riverdale Casts Supergirl's Brit Morgan in Recurring Season 2 Role". (I didn't read the article, as I haven't yet seen Riverdale, but yay, Brit Morgan!)

"Black Panther Is Cleverly Reimagining One of Its Major Villains To Avoid Racial Stereotypes".

I love [dreamwidth.org profile] chaila's (spoilery!) [dreamwidth.org profile] ladybusiness post about Wonder Woman from a couple of weeks ago.

"Star Trek: Discovery literally hired writers to fact-check new stories against Trek canon".

"Killjoys' Aaron Ashmore reflects on past Smallville, Veronica Mars roles". And a bunch of others!


Miscellaneous

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] larryhammer, "The Quest to Return Tomatoes to Their Full-Flavored Glory: We’ve bred the original tomato taste out of existence. Now geneticists are asking: Can we put it back?"

Also via [dreamwidth.org profile] larryhammer, "A third of marine megafauna died in a mass extinction that we didn’t even know about".

"Kill Your Old Ideas So You Can Be More Creative". [Lifehacker] Hmm.

This site lets you see if a Twitter user (one with a public account, anyway) is currently shadowbanned.

"Why bisexual men are still fighting to convince us they exist". [January]

"10 Coolest Ice Cream Traditions From Around The World".

"That Time the TSA Found a Scientist’s 3-D-Printed Mouse Penis: And other tales from the intersection of science and airport security".

"After a Revolution". [Dimas Ilaw at Uncanny Magazine] [Content notes: refers to a wide variety of murder, rape, assault, torture...] "Here is a secret that is not a secret. Here is a curse that is not a curse. Revolutions are not redemption. They will not save you, just as ours did not save us back in 1896, or 1986, or 2001.

It is not that revolutions are useless; it is that they are not enough. And, perhaps, that is what damns us: we give everything we have, blood and fire and all our screaming voices, and after that it is still not over—we still have to go on, to carry our country through the painful process of rebuilding and rooting out diseases infesting our systems and finding better ways to be just, and fair, and kind, which is an even longer, more difficult trial, for all that it is less lit by fire."



On RocketNews24:

--"Dominique Ansel gives us new eye-popping ice cream served in a slice of watermelon!【Pics】".

--"Sanrio and Sailor Moon finally reveal their lineup of My Melody collab goods!"

Trust by Kylie Scott

Jul. 17th, 2017 08:00 am
calissa: A low angle photo of a book with a pair of glasses sitting on top. (Mt TBR)
[personal profile] calissa

Trust, Kylie Scott, Earl Grey Editing, books and tea, tea and books

Published: Self-published in July 2017
Format reviewed: E-book (mobi)
Genres: Young adult, contemporary romance
Source: NetGalley
Reading Challenges: Australian Women Writers Challenge 2017
Available:Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble ~ Book Depository ~Kobo

Disclaimer: I was provided with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Being young is all about the experiences: the first time you skip school, the first time you fall in love… the first time someone holds a gun to your head.

After being held hostage during a robbery at the local convenience store, seventeen-year-old Edie finds her attitude about life shattered. Unwilling to put up with the snobbery and bullying at her private school, she enrolls at the local public high school, crossing paths with John. The boy who risked his life to save hers.

While Edie’s beginning to run wild, however, John’s just starting to settle down. After years of partying and dealing drugs with his older brother, he’s going straight–getting to class on time, and thinking about the future.

An unlikely bond grows between the two as John keeps Edie out of trouble and helps her broaden her horizons. But when he helps her out with another first–losing her virginity–their friendship gets complicated.

Meanwhile, Edie and John are pulled back into the dangerous world they narrowly escaped. They were lucky to survive the first time, but this time they have more to lose–each other.

Trust is Kylie Scott’s first foray into Young Adult and I certainly hope it won’t be her last because I was pretty impressed.

There was so much that was great about this book. I appreciated its diversity. This includes race and sexuality–two of Edie’s new friends are lesbians and the other Vietnamese–but it also goes beyond that. Edie herself is an unconventional protagonist. She may be white and blonde, but she’s also considered overweight and has no desire to change that. She has seen her mum go through the constant torture of diets and would rather be happy than subject herself to the same. Of course, she is bullied for being a socially-unacceptable body shape but never by the narrative. Instead, she is also shown as being desireble–and desirable by someone who has a socially-acceptable body shape.

Another thing I loved about the story is the way it advocates for healthy relationships and boundary setting. Edie is not shy about cutting people off if they violate her privacy. She has zero time for other people’s bullshit. While her relationship with John didn’t start under the best circumstances, it is a healthy one–with each one supporting the other through the changes they’re making in their lives. There is also one scene that takes a bit of a dig at Twilight when John unexpectedly shows up at Edie’s bedroom window one night.

This is not a book that pulls its punches. It kicks off with the robbery Edie and John get caught in at the convenience store, and takes us all the way through that traumatic experience. It has all the bodily fluids (and I really do mean all). There’s onscreen sex–and, being a romance writer, Scott isn’t shy about it. There’s awkward sex and sexy sex, and good consent practices at all times.

All in all, I loved Trust to pieces and I’m hoping we’ll see more YA from Kylie Scott.

Mirrored from Earl Grey Editing.

umadoshi: (Witch (yumeiro))
[personal profile] umadoshi
Fannish/Geeky Things

Via a few people, [dreamwidth.org profile] findthatbook is a comm. for helping each other identify dimly-remembered books.

"Fullmetal Alchemist live action drops new teaser trailer and 9 character visuals".

"Game Of Thrones Characters Like You Haven’t Seen Before In A Psychedelic Photoshoot".

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] sineala, "Star Trek IV Now Exists in the Same Universe As All Marvel Films Thanks to a Special Cameo".

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] gramarye1971, Utena is coming out on Blu-ray with "other limited-edition items", and I don't want to buy it again (I bought the remastered version a few years ago, and I don't care about Blu-ray), but...it may depend on what the limited-edition things are. Utena!!!

"Stop Explaining the Direct Market to Me". [Book Riot]

[dreamwidth.org profile] skygiants posted about Sky Masterson of Guys and Dolls clearly having been written as a lesbian.


Writing/SFF

The #6MOP hashtag on Twitter is "6 Months of Pots", which started off here (and the thread explains the name: "[A] prof. does an experiment in his pottery class. Half the class can only work on one pot each during the allotted time. The other half has to make as many pots as possible in the allotted time. It's about quality vs. quantity. Turned out, the best pots came from the students who were making as many as possible. Each pot taught a new lesson, informed the next one. Basically, make shitty art. So I think July-Dec will be six months of shitty art for me. Maybe it will help me find the magic again. It can't hurt, anyway. All writing is growth.") Later, when starting the hashtag, [twitter.com profile] writer_gem says "Really the goal is just to happily and enthusiastically make shitty art for six months and not think too hard or worry too much." [twitter.com profile] Making_Pots' bio says "The #6MOP hype person, here to tweet prompts and encouragement."

"How A Reader’s Feminist Critique Changed My Sci-Fi Novel". [LitHub]

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] zulu, "Applying the Moral Premise to your story" is an interesting take on plotting.


Miscellaneous

"Ways To Stay Motivated In This Shit-Shellacked Era Of Epic Stupid". [Chuck Wendig] "The greatest question I get, right now, is how to simply persist creating art and staying motivated and creative in this epoch of syphilitic dipshittery, so I thought I’d bop in here and try my hand at answering that."

"Artist Ronit Baranga’s Disturbing Anatomical Dishware Creeps Across Tabletops".

"Over 83,500 Vintage Sewing Patterns Are Now Available Online".

"Google has built a stunning, searchable archive of 3,000 years of world fashion".

"Meet The “Queen Of The Dark” Who Was Told To Bleach Her Incredibly Dark Skin By Uber Driver". It's a terrible headline. Have the first paragraph: "Meet Nyakim Gatwech, the South Sudanese model who’s teaching people not to be afraid of the dark. With her deeply pigmented skin and fierce determination, she’s breaking down the barriers of conventional beauty, and encouraging others to do exactly the same."

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] isis, Factitious is (quoting [dreamwidth.org profile] isis) "a game to test your ability to discern whether a linked news item is real or fake".

Via [dreamwidth.org profile] niqaeli, Pyramid Seven is "a queer owned, chicago based boxer brief company made for people with periods, regardless of gender. After noticing there was a lack of conversation around people with periods who didn't normally wear feminine underwear, we decided to do something about it."
havocthecat: wagon tracks in the midwest (places landscape midwest)
[personal profile] havocthecat
The thing I like about this is Lifehacker article is that it explains the various problems with gluten that people have, and also it lies heavily on the "don't be a jerk if you think someone is a 'faker' with their gluten sensitivity" principle. Which. DON'T BE A JERK ABOUT PEOPLE'S FOOD ISSUES. Whether you think they're faking it or not isn't really the important thing.

Also it's just a really good article that's in the Celiac 101/Gluten 101 vein.

Here's the Deal with Gluten

Loose-leaf Links #43

Jul. 14th, 2017 08:00 am
calissa: A black and white photo of a large, dark teapot and a small Chinese teacup with a fish painted on the side (Tea)
[personal profile] calissa

Amaretto, Tea Centre, Loose-leaf Links, loose-leaf tea, Earl Grey Editing

Loose-leaf Links is a feature where I gather together the interesting bits and pieces on sci-fi, fantasy and romance I’ve come across and share them with you over tea. Today’s tea is Amaretto from the Tea Centre. This flavoured black tastes strongly of marzipan, making it a favourite of mine.

Follow Up ) Awards News ) Community and Conventions ) On Equity ) For Writers ) For Readers )

Mirrored from Earl Grey Editing.

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