Wednesday Reading Meme

Jul. 19th, 2017 04:10 pm
sineala: Detail of Harry Wilson Watrous, "Just a Couple of Girls" (reading)
[personal profile] sineala
What I Just Finished Reading

Marko Kloos, Fields of Fire: Sometimes you just want some mil-SF where people shoot giant bug-eyed aliens with big guns. There was a chapter at the beginning devoted to the main character and his wife yelling at her parents who didn't believe in guns or the military that was really kind of lousy, but thankfully most of the book was then about shooting aliens with big guns.

Ben Aaronovitch, The Furthest Station: A novella in the Rivers of London series in which Peter et al. investigate ghost sightings on the London Underground. Like the rest of the series, it's a fun and engaging read. I have no memory of any of the supporting characters, which is probably not ideal, but this book is A+ worth it for Nightingale's comment to Peter about how it is now time for him to learn Greek.

Rick Beyer & Elizabeth Sayles, The Ghost Army of World War II: How One Top-Secret Unit Deceived the Enemy with Inflatable Tanks, Sound Effects, and Other Audacious Fakery: It seems like "inflatable tanks" are something no one would really have done, but apparently that was what the Ghost Army was for. This is an interesting read; it's not as wordy as I usually like my non-fiction to be, but it makes up for it with all the images. I hadn't realized that so many of the Ghost Army soldiers were actual artists, and apparently they just kept drawing the war as it happened, so there are a lot of really nice sketches.

What I'm Reading Now

Comics Wednesday!

Doctor Strange #23, Invincible Iron Man #9, Ms. Marvel #20, Secret Empire #6, Secret Empire Brave New World #4, US Avengers #8, Ultimates 2 #9, X-Men Gold #8 )

What I'm Reading Next

No idea.

FMK: Mélusine and Juniper Time

Jul. 19th, 2017 01:50 pm
melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)
[personal profile] melannen
Mélusine by Sarah Monette is a very long, very good, very fucked-up H/C darkfic in a canon I don't know.

That's not necessarily a criticism, by the way, it's enough my id that I have spent many a delightful lost weekend voluntarily reading exactly that sort of thing.

Read more... )

Anyway, I enjoyed it enough that it is getting kept (after all, some day I might not be able to find fanfic like this on the internet anymore) but I don't think I care enough about the non-id parts to go looking up the canon. (If I did I would probably just end up really liking Shannon, anyway, and like I said it's really obvious there is like 0 fic about him.)

And still very annoyed that it had exactly nothing to do with Mélusine; if someone tried to name a fantasy novel Cinderella and then not have anything to do with Cinderella except, like, the ruling family having a shoe in their heraldry and also there was a fairy godmother as a minor character in one chapter, nobody would let you get away with that.

Also, it got me re-reading a bunch of old Doctor/Master fic just in time for me to be mildly optimistic about the show again, so there's that.


Juniper Time by Kate Wilhelm was not a bad book, and I'm glad I read it, but I also don't think I need to keep it, and I didn't particularly like it. It gets the "if you like this sort of thing, this is probably the sort of thing you will like" rating, with a caveat for me being unsure about its portrayal of First Nations people. The first thing that struck me is that it didn't feel like a SF novel, or even a genre novel at all really. I spent a lot of time thinking about why. It's a story about the building of an international space station and first contact with aliens set amid the collapse of Western capitalist civilization, so it ought to be an SF novel. It's definitely at least partly just the writing style. But I think it's mostly a question of what the book thinks is important, fr. ex: not the space station or the aliens or even particularly the collapse of civilization except as they affect the two main characters' many personal issues, which are the only thing the narrative actually seems to think we might be interested in. Whic isn't to say I don't like a character-focused SF novel, but an SF novel where one of the main characters is an astronomer who spends half his time in space, a) I would expect it to spend more than five pages actually in space, and b) I would expect him to not spend all of those five pages thinking about nothing but his marital issues. Also, you know, I 100% don't care about the dude's personal issues and am only mildly interested in hers.

Read more... )

I am glad I have read this but am pretty sure I will never desire to read it again, so K pile it is. And it inspired me to finish Always Coming Home, so it was definitely worth it.
sineala: (Avengers: Welcome to NY)
[personal profile] sineala
Icebreaker (5404 words) by Sineala
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Marvel (Comics), Marvel Noir, Bullet Points (Comics)
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Steve Rogers/Tony Stark
Characters: Steve Rogers, Tony Stark
Additional Tags: Canonical Character Death, Grief/Mourning, Hero Worship, Multiverse, Angst, Community: cap_ironman, Cap-Ironman Bingo
Summary: Months after Tony is murdered on a strange, starless world, a world almost no one remembers, Steve plummets from a drone plane into the cold waters of the North Atlantic. He's fully expecting not to survive -- but instead he wakes up on another new world, where he meets a very familiar stranger. And it turns out the two of them have a lot in common.

For Cap-IM Bingo; the square is "automat," which I would just like to say is very tricky to use if you're not writing Agent Carter fic.

Twelve days left to finish my last Bingo square! And then five more days to write my Steve/Tony anniversary zine story basically from scratch because I am lousy at doing things in advance.

I wish my faves were less obscure

Jul. 18th, 2017 07:22 pm
sineala: (Avengers: Carol: In flight)
[personal profile] sineala
I have been stalking them for a year and regretting not buying them when they had them, and in case you also care, the Warbird and Wasp shirts are back in stock at ThinkGeek. (They also still have a Squirrel Girl one but it's not available in all sizes. Also if I had to pick, I like Carol and Jan better.)

(I know, Carol is not an obscure fave, what with the upcoming movie, but Warbird is my favorite Carol and there is almost no Warbird merch. I have a 3.5" figure Lysimache got me -- technically Ms. Marvel but the outfit is the same -- and I have a messenger bag from WeLoveFine but that's it.)

YouTube channel, at long last

Jul. 18th, 2017 03:30 pm
starlady: (bibliophile)
[personal profile] starlady
Years after everyone else, I have uploaded all of my vids to my YouTube channel. All of them, that is, except the remasters and the ones that have been copy-blocked globally. I will continue to do Vimeo under password uploads for all my vids so that people in Germany can watch them, and in case of further copyright jail shenanigans on future vids.



A number of people have asked me about this for the past few years, and with the way vidding is shifting, it seemed like the thing to do. To celebrate, I have embedded my most recent and most popular vids on this entry. 


It's mostly true that I make vids for myself, but I do enjoy other people enjoying them. Feel free to subscribe to the channel, and if you feel like watching or liking the vids on this new platform (or reblog on the old tumbleweed), that would not be unappreciated by me.

One final note: I will add YouTube links to the old vid posts as time and 2017 allow.

FMK #17: Humorous SF

Jul. 18th, 2017 05:51 pm
melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)
[personal profile] melannen
Last week's winner was Enchantress From the Stars! Looking forward to it. From discussion in the comments, I think I attempted to write that story once when I was about twelve.

The loser on overall K votes was Pebble in the Sky, but I'm invoking the rule that says a K winner must also have a majority for K votes, which Pebble in the Sky didn't have, and giving it to the Stasheff instead.

(I also just noticed that I never announced a K for the LGBT-themed week. No book in that poll had a majority of K votes - or anything close to a majority, even - so I'm not calling a K. The overall most K votes was the David Gerrold book, but it had almost twice as many f/m votes as K, so I have added it to the F pile instead.)

Responses to Mélusine and Juniper Time coming later today, I promise.

This week, a friend assigned me Humorous SF, so here we go!

How FMK works, short version: I am trying to clear out my unreads. So there is a poll, in which you get to pick F, M, or K. F means I should spend a night of wild passion with the book ASAP, and then decide whether to keep it or not. M means I should continue to commit to a long-term relationship of sharing my bedroom with it. K means it should go away immediately. Anyone can vote, you don't have to actually know anything about the books.

I pick a winner on Friday night (although won't actually close the poll, people can still vote,) and report results/ post the new poll on the following Tuesday, and write a response to the F winner sometime in the next week. That will leave me only four books behind, whoo.

Link to long version of explanation (on first poll)

Poll: Brust, Dickson, Doctorow, Foster, Gardner, Hines, Jones, Laumer, Martinez, Moore J, Moore MJ, Pinkwater, Pratchett, Robinson, anthologies )

Wonder Woman, Made of Clay

Jul. 18th, 2017 07:51 am
beatrice_otter: Wonder Woman--Black and White (Wonder Woman)
[personal profile] beatrice_otter
Thing I do not understand about what people take away from Wonder Woman: "Zeus and Ares considering Diana to be Zeus's daughter"="Diana was not sculpted from clay by Hippolyta."  It's like, they assume that the whole "sculpting from clay" thing was just a lie to get away with "where the heck did you get sperm on an island with no men."

I mean, the Greek gods were "born" and came to life in all kinds of weird and wacky ways.  Athena, for example!  Athena was Zeus' daughter with Metis (and very similar to Diana of Themyscira, in a lot of ways).  How was Athena born?  She sprang fully formed from Zeus's head!  He was still her father and Metis her mother.  A bunch of Zeus's other children were at least sometimes considered to have been born through means other than sexual reproduction.  (Ares' mom may have gotten pregnant with him by eating the wrong lettuce leaf at the wrong time.  Ares was still considered a child of Zeus.)  The Greek gods just kind of went with the flow.  The people involved in your creation (whether through sex or not) were your parents.

What I'm trying to say is, everything we are told in the movie could easily be true all at the same time: Hippolyta wants a daughter so she sculpted one out of clay and prayed to Zeus.  Zeus wants a god-killer to take out Ares, and so he obliged her by flinging a lightning bolt her way or whatever, and bringing the baby to life.  The Amazons know this, but what is most important to them?  This is their Queen's daughter, their princess, the only child on the island, their Diana who was sculpted out of clay by her mother.  What is most important to Ares?  That Diana was brought to life by Zeus and is thus his daughter, and therefore Ares' sister, whether or not her birth fits into the standard "mommy and daddy have sex and nine months later a child is born" model that is the only way humans reproduce.  Ares and Diana are not humans.  They are Greek god and demigod.  Ares, in particular, scorns humans, so why would he care about human definitions of parenthood and sibilinghood?  Especially when he's trying to get Diana onside.  "Come join the family" is a lot more compelling than "come join the dude you've been taught to hate all your life for all the horrible things he's done."

As for Diana?  How does she consider herself?  What is most important to her?  That she is Hippolyta's daughter, sculpted from clay.  Yes, she was brought to life by Zeus.  Yes, that means that in the way the Greek gods thought, Zeus was her father.  She acknowledges this tie.  That means Ares is her brother.  But I bet you that when you ask her how she was born, five minutes heart-to-heart with Ares on a battlefield doesn't overturn the fact that she is an Amazon and thinks like one.  And therefore, unless you are specifically considering her role as god-killer, the fact that Hippolyta sculpted her from clay is far more important than Zeus's contribution.

Look at the battle between her and Ares.  She doesn't really ... react much when Ares starts calling her his sister.  She doesn't look, talk, or act like a person having a major identity crisis.  She's just like, "okay, you want to call me sister, sure, fine, whatever, guess that fits too, let's get on with this."  She doesn't react like "OMG, my mom LIED to me, everything I know about myself is a lie!"  It's more in line with "oh, right, yeah, from your POV Zeus's contribution is the most important, whatever."

Support a great vidder!

Jul. 17th, 2017 03:45 pm
starlady: Mako's face in the jaeger, in profile (mako mori is awesome)
[personal profile] starlady
My friend [personal profile] kuwdora is currently doing her damnedest to change careers and become a professional editor. She's got a great opportunity for coaching from the editor of Burn Notice and Empire but needs help to make the math come out. The program will give her a significant leg up as a woman in a male-dominated industry and give her essential connections in Hollywood that will enable her to succeed.

You can donate to her GoFundMe directly, or commission a vid from her. Abbey has been a huge influence on my vidding and was ridiculously generous with her time, skills, and expertise when I was starting out, so if you've ever felt like you'd like to buy me a coffee for any of my vids, please take this opportunity to pay it forward to her instead.

two things

Jul. 17th, 2017 07:11 pm
aethel: (killjoys the girl [by askpoison])
[personal profile] aethel
Robots.txt meant for search engines don’t work well for web archives at Internet Archive

I was fiddling with the RPF pages on Fanlore, and it occurred to me that certain science fiction fandom practices might also have had an influence on Star Trek RPF, since Star Trek fandom was so indebted to sf fandom. SF fandom had faanfiction, where fans wrote stories about each other (I've never read one, so I don't know what these stories read like). Some pro authors did this too. Recently, I read a short story collection by Philip K. Dick that included a story about Poul Anderson getting kidnapped from a convention by people from the future. On the other hand, these practices may have more in common with self-insertion fic than RPF. I have no data to back this up beyond the plot of Visit to a Weird Planet. Has anyone ever written about this?
sineala: (Avengers: Tony: Tentacle)
[personal profile] sineala
One and Every Way (21844 words) by Sineala
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Marvel (Comics), Marvel 616, Avengers (Comics)
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Relationships: Steve Rogers/Tony Stark
Characters: Steve Rogers, Tony Stark
Additional Tags: 5 Things, Tentacles, Tentacle Sex, Dubious Consentacles, Consentacles, Bondage, Humiliation, Dirty Talk, Consent Play, Subdrop, Dildos, Porn Watching, Phone Sex, Dreamsharing, Telepathy, Past Alcohol Abuse/Alcoholism, Extremis, Double Penetration, Additional Warnings In Author's Note, Avengers Vol. 1 (1963), Avengers Vol. 3 (1998), New Avengers Vol. 1 (2004)
Series: Part 2 of This Mortal Part of Mine
Summary: Five ways Steve and Tony have attempted to incorporate tentacles into their relationship.

Apparently after every RBB I write in this fandom, I think to myself, "That was nice but it needed a porny epilogue," because so far I have done the Cap-IM RBB three times and every time I have decided to write some kind of PWP sequel. And this one is five PWP sequels in one story because I just could not pick what kind of tentacle PWP I wanted. So I wrote all of them. For [personal profile] phoenixmetaphor's birthday, because she did the (excellent) original tentacle art for which I wrote This Mortal Part of Mine. You will probably want to read that one first.

I think maybe that now I will write stories that are not about tentacles. For a bit, at least. That was kind of a lot of tentacles all at once. (Three more stories to go this month!)

17776

Jul. 15th, 2017 08:27 pm
sineala: (Avatar: Appa and Toph)
[personal profile] sineala
17776 has concluded as of today, and you should all read it. I had seen people talking about it over the past few days and I thought, "Meh, why would I want to read a story about football?" (I do have occasional positive feelings about football but not enough to sustain an entire story.) It's... not so much about football as it is about why humans play games. You don't need to like or in fact know anything about American football, I promise. (It would probably help if you had positive feelings about space exploration, though.)

It's... it's hard to explain what it is without spoiling too much of it. It's set in the future when the game of football is very different and so is everything else. It's kind of like Homestuck in that it's told through a combination of text, images, gifs, and video. (You do need to watch the video -- I can't find transcripts, sorry -- but you don't need the sound on; one of the intermission videos has background audio of a football game but everything else is just music.)

Anyway, I don't want to say too much, but you should read it.

(It would probably be a good Yuletide fandom.)

random non-spoilery TdF observations

Jul. 14th, 2017 09:51 pm
naraht: Chris Froome and Peter Sagan chatting (other-HelloFroomey)
[personal profile] naraht
I've been feeling inexplicably unwell so I finished work early this afternoon and spent it lying on the couch watching the Tour de France...

• One of Britain's top cyclists from the 80s, Philippa York, has just publicly come out as trans during the Tour. Apparently she had been avoiding public life for some years, but people in the know were aware that she'd transitioned. What's heartening is that the reception from the cycling world has, as far as I can tell, been extremely supportive. She's been guest commentating on ITV for a few stages now, and I haven't heard a single stumble over name or pronouns. Chapeau, Philippa. It must have taken a lot of courage.

• David Millar gets so into the tactics. You get the feeling that he doesn't care so much who wins (or does a good job of covering it up, unlike Carlton Kirby, who has his crushes), but he gets passionately angry if he disagrees with a team's choices: "why are they doing that??!? It's ridiculous! What are they trying to achieve???"

Yet when Ned Boulting asked, he heartily and believably denied having any desire to be out on the mountain himself: "no, no, a thousand times no."

• I've managed to get my parents into watching the Tour. They're both backing Froome. What did I do to deserve this?

• As always, a special thanks is due to whoever at ITV does the end-of-show montages. They are always superbly on point and they almost always choose great music. Today I owe them particular thanks for introducing me to the music of Jacqueline Taïeb, a French singer of Tunisian origin from the 60s.

Apart from being a great song, Bravo just makes me think of the "Carlien Daten?" saga. (Spoiler: after the date they "decided to just be friends.")

I don't get the feeling that Taïeb pities (or particularly respects) the hero, though perhaps I'm reading too much into it...

(French lyrics)



• ETA: What have I learned from the Orica Backstage Pass so far? That Esteban Chaves is reading a Danielle Steele novel and that (unrelatedly) Matt Hayman has had to explain to him what a "bromance" is.
beatrice_otter: WWII soldier holding a mug with the caption "How about a nice cup of RESEARCH?" (Research)
[personal profile] beatrice_otter
One of the things we fans love is our Woobbie Heroes, the guys (like Daniel Jackson or Bucky Barnes) who suffer so beautifully.  Hurt-comfort, we loves it, precious.  (And oh, I am dating myself with those terms.)

Anyway, there are a lot of fics about, say, Bucky recovering from torture, or where his psychological recovery is a large part of the story.  And one thing I've noticed is that the treatments for PTSD that people normally use are behind the times.  Like, they'll have talk therapy, and maybe a therapy animal or journaling--and these are good and helpful--but there's been a LOT of research into trauma disorders and recovery in the last two decades, and a lot of developments of new treatments.  Talk therapy is not the gold standard of what a cutting-edge therapist recommended by Tony Stark would use.  It might well be part of the therapy, but not the whole of it.  And Sam Wilson, working at the VA, would certainly know this as well.  I am not a professional, but I have read enough of the top books on trauma to have some feel for the subject.

If you would like to incorporate some more current research, understandings, and techniques, the best place to start is The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk.  He's got decades of experience and research dealing with combat vets, survivors of childhood abuse of every kind, and every sort of trauma you can imagine.  The book is well-written and interesting and suitable for a non-specialist to read, and it covers the history of trauma in psychology and how we learned what we know today, along with some very interesting case studies.  Best of all, the last few chapters are overviews of what he's found to be the most effective forms of treatment, including a brief overview of what the treatment is and their best guesses as to why it works, and then some examples of what's happened when he has used it or seen it used.  (Also, it's fun how he burns the DSM-V and some of his colleagues.  Like, there is SO MUCH SHADE, OH MY GOD.)

If you want some medical jargon to use in your fic, the place to start would be The Body Bears the Burden by Robert Scaer.  Scaer is a neurobiologist, not a psychologist, and boy howdy can you tell in his writing.  This one is a little more challenging, but it has a lot of medical stuff if you want to use that in your fic and wikipedia isn't doing it for you.
sineala: The Enterprise (Star Trek: TOS) flying into the clouds (enterprise)
[personal profile] sineala
Star Trek IV Now Exists in the Same Universe As All Marvel Films Thanks to a Special Cameo.

(Above link contains very minor spoilers for Spider-Man: Homecoming. And I guess also for Star Trek IV.)

I just. What.

Wednesday Reading Meme

Jul. 12th, 2017 05:31 pm
sineala: Detail of Harry Wilson Watrous, "Just a Couple of Girls" (reading)
[personal profile] sineala
What I Just Finished Reading

Nothing. But, hey, I finished writing a story, maybe that means I can read something again.

What I'm Reading Now

Comics Wednesday! Not much I'm interested in this week.

Black Panther and the Crew #4, Defenders #3, Secret Warriors #4, Spider-Men II #1, Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #22, Uncanny Avengers #25, X-Men Blue #7 )

What I'm Reading Next

Well, this mil-SF book is still on my Kindle...

FMK #16: Psi-fi

Jul. 11th, 2017 10:45 pm
melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)
[personal profile] melannen
Sorry for dropping off the face of the internet - life has been coming at me pretty hard the last couple of weeks, and part of that is having to find entirely different scraps of time to use for writing internet posts.

Anyway, I have read Juniper Time and am mostly through writing a review of it, so that should go up soon. I also read Always Coming Home because it was becoming increasingly clear that in order to talk about the sort of stories I want to, I needed to have read it. I'm not sure what I think of it as a novel, but as worldbuilding it is amazing and still haunting me (also I now want to go "forget sedoretu AU just give me Kesh AUs of everything", of course.) I have also made progress on reading both Melusine (not sure if I actually like it, but finding it compulsively readable, also not nearly enough snake-women so far) and Discount Armageddon (like it okay, but not finding it compulsively readable, a++ on snake-woman though.)

I also saw Spider-Man and have to say I enjoyed it more than most of the other recent Marvel movies I've watched (partly, I think, because the stakes were lower and it could just be fun.) I am mostly in it for Karen, to probably nobody's shock, although I am way too invested in Michelle because she is basically 100% me in high school (I'm white, and we weren't a well-funded magnet school so we didn't go to the academic quiz championship because the advisor got arrested for dealing crack halfway through the year and the paperwork got screwed up. But other than that, spot on. So I am terrified they will ruin her for me of course. Also I mostly just want the YW crossover where Michelle and Murph and Vision team up to help Karen with her Ordeal.)

This week's theme is Psi-Fi, for no particular reason except that it's getting harder to patch together themes from what's left. :P

How FMK works, short version: I am trying to clear out my unreads. So there is a poll, in which you get to pick F, M, or K. F means I should spend a night of wild passion with the book ASAP, and then decide whether to keep it or not. M means I should continue to commit to a long-term relationship of sharing my bedroom with it. K means it should go away immediately. Anyone can vote, you don't have to actually know anything about the books.

I pick a winner on Friday night (although won't actually close the poll, people can still vote,) and report results/ post the new poll on the following Tuesday, and write a response to the F winner sometime in the next week.

Link to long version of explanation (on first poll)

Poll: Asimov, Cherryh, Dickson, Engdahl, Goldin, Lightman, Norton, Robinson, Smith, Stasheff, Zelazny )
naraht: Chris Froome and Peter Sagan chatting (other-HelloFroomey)
[personal profile] naraht
I did actually laugh out loud at this one. I love these guys. Can they be a Yuletide fandom?

dancesontrains: (Ugly Betty)
[personal profile] dancesontrains
Basically, a rotation curation is when there's an account set up for different people to take over. People 'curate' it for a week or so. I was on https://twitter.com/TWkLGBTQ, which as you can tell is all about the LGBTQ+ community.

It was interesting! The account follows almost 3,000 people, which is very different from my usual account's 700 or so. I ended up spending a lot of time just reading people's feeds, also seeing the same news stories (Andrew Garfield making a joke that backfired, the hot mess with Blac Chyna and Rob Kardashian, people killed in hatecrimes) again and again. That last one was really upsetting.

I also spoke to a larger selection of people than I normally would have - the account follows the LGBT Conservatives account and a few other, similar people. Obviously I don't agree with them, but it was still interesting/infuriating.

Overall, I had a very good experience and would rec it! Have followed a bunch of new to me people too.

November 2015

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