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My Fandoms and Ships can all be found in my tags. I post recs, my fanworks (mostly fic), general fannish stuff and some RL stuff.  My journal is semi Friends-Only. Most posts are public, but anything personal is friends only.  Currently I'm f-locking Supernatural and The Vampire Diaries thoughts and meta. If you friend me I may not friend you right back if I don't know you, so comment here or PM me so I can get to know you if you wish me to friend you back. I love meeting new friends and I'd love to talk to you about fic or shared fannish interests! :)  Also, if you find a dead link in a recs post, please let me know so I can try to update it.






My Fanwork Policy regarding podfic, remixes, ect... is here.

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pslasher: (Default)
It’s Vividcon time again! I had another party again this year, though it was a little smaller than last year with way less food – I just ordered pizza this time. Having a baby means I have a lot less time for stuff like that. But I was excited to still have the party! I’m not linking each vid title to the vid post this year, instead click on the link for the vid show and if a download link is available you can get it there. Also, I watched Club Vivid and Premiers last. By the time I got to those shows I was pressed for time so I didn’t make as many notes for the vids I liked. I just didn’t have time to be as comprehensive as last time. There are lots more great vids shown than I’ve recorded here.

You can see all the vids shown at this year’s con, and all years, here: http://vividcon.info/
+Denotes vids shown at my party.
*Denotes vids that I’m really excited about
Read more... )
New Frontier by here’s luck | Firefly
Beautiful use of motion, good look at Mal and River through the series.


Auction: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/260/

/Boom, Bang, Bang by banbury | Fast and Furious movies
Nice use of clips of Brien fixing the car to the lyrics “You’re going to get it tonight.” Fun vid.


Wish You Were Here: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/269/

Touch the Sky by Llin | Multi fandom
Lovely look at girls doing things and having adventures. Great diversity also.

Our Version of Events by silly cleo | Pride and Rent
Very moving. I haven’t seen either movie but I should.

/Firework by happydork | The Gymnast
Beautifully edited, beautiful footage. I want to see this movie now.

Workin’ It by Broken Mnemonic | Magic Mike
Hot! Great editing for the action and dancing.

*Dance Apocalyptic by eruthros and thingswithwings | Multi
Fun multifandom vid. Interesting combo, dancing and the end of status quo/civilization.

+*Supernova Girl by shinyjenni | Multi
Ladies! Lots of fun.

+You Told the Drunks I Knew Karate by beccatoria | Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Awwwww! So cute and so much fun! Excellent vid for Finn and the three of them.


No Source? No Problem: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/267/

Bloody Shirt by unfinishedidea | Welcome to Night Vale
Woah, Night Vale is way more violent than I thought if this vid is a good representation!

The Scorpio Races by Tifa | The Scorpio Races
Beautiful footage and vid.

The Name of the Wind Trailer by jumboskittles | The Name of the Wind
Interesting fantasy story. This book is on my To Read list and I’d be interested to rewatch the vid after reading the book to see how the vidder did.

/Trailer for Drastically Redefining Protocol by Zoetrope | Merlin
Great trailer for rageprufrock’s story! I loved the use of RL paparazzi footage for the “fictional footage” of the story. And the newspaper and TV manips were brilliant!

Grisha Trilogy by CarolynOnUTube | The Grisha Trilogy
I’m very intrigued about the story now. Very sharp and beautiful vid.

Written By The Victors – Vid by zulu | Stargate Atlantis
An excellent vid for an amazing fic by Speranza, a fic I still occasionally re-read.

+The Marauders by fakescottishaccent | Harry Potter
I don’t really know anything about Marauder era HP, but this vid made me really curious about it.

Cinder: The Lunar Chronicles || The Future Will Destroy You (FAN-BOOK TRAILER) by Rinoa | The Lunar Chronicles
That looked really cool, and it’s a book I already want to read.

+“Ancillary Justice” book trailer by bironic | Imperial Radch trilogy (multi)
I can’t tell it it’s all footage from the same movie, it’s edited that seamlessly. It’s a book that’s already been picked by my book club to read and now I’m REALLY curious to view it again after reading the book.

+[FanVid]Good Omens by YunJi Jung | Good Omens
Cute vid for the book.


Keys to the Kingdom: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/263/

+After the day’s work is done by stardust rain | Marvel Cinematic Universe
Excellent Fury vid, looking at him running Shield and that power, as well as a bit about the Avengers. You don’t get too many vids about Director Fury.

Supremacy by rhoboat | James Bond
Excellent editing. I like that it focused on M and her time in power, and how she handled it.

Monster by awkwardlyary | Empire
I still haven’t seen Empire, but this vid was amazing.

Empty Nest by sweetestdrain | Kings
Another show that I keep seeing amazing vids for at Vividcon and I want to watch.

All the Rowboats by Jetpack Monkey | The Godfather
Interesting song choice for the Godfather, but it works well.


Express Yourself: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/271/

+Oh No! by AbsoluteDestiny | Purple Rain
Cool vid for the movie.


Persistence of Memory: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/268/

+King and Lionheart by violace | Pacific Rim
Lovely and moving.


Fandom Life: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/272/

+Happy by RealTDragon | Cosplay
So much fun!

+Wrong in All The Right Ways by Little Heaven | Duran Duran
This one made one of the ladies smile!

+Pressure by California Crew | Meta and Vidding
A vid about old school VCR vidding. It was really cool to see what the process used to be like.

/True Love by Molly & Sim | Sherlock BBC
I love this JohnLock vid! It’s so cute that they filmed themselves as John and Sherlock, and the vid was entertaining.


Challenge: Descent: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/261/

+Taiga by hollywoodgrrl | Interstellar
Beautiful editing, very emotional.

The Edge of Glory by jmtorres | Leverage
Fun!


Spoken Audio In Vids: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/262/

Dean “daddy’s blunt little instrument” [to Virginia] by Alina0405video | Supernatural
The Dean feels! Oh man, punch to the gut.

*Filmography 2013 by Gen Ip | Multi
Amazing editing of many of the movies of 2013.


Premiers: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/259/

+Blue Ridge Mountains by Trelkez | Star Wars

+Free by Butterfly | White Collar
OT3! I still don’t like how the show ended, but this makes it a little sweeter.

+Never Wake Me Up by Kitty/Winterevanesce | Multi
Kids and their dreams. <3

+Cool for the Summer by kiki_miserychic | Spy
Fun!

*+Pompeii by Milly | The Martian
Great epic song choice for the movie, a great vid.

Aphrodesiac by hollywoodgrrl | Star Wars: The Force Awakens


Nearly New: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/258/

Epic Loki is Epic by mranderson71 | Thor
Great choreography and song choice.

+Wasp Nest by Gwyneth | Marvel Cinematic Universe
Natasha and her strengths.


Lord King Bad: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/12/
Somehow I watched this whole show even though it was shown in 2006? They must have had it streaming for ‘history’ or something.

All My Myself by T. Jonesy | Star Trek TOS
Surprisingly touching and sad. Also, it’s sad there is no download link to it.


Club Vivid: http://vividcon.info/vidshows/257/

*+Star Work by Grammarwoman | Star Wars
Great vid for the ladies of Star Wars. Also a great dance vid.

+Raspberry Swirl by ohvienna | Outlander

+Ex’s and Oh’s by Roarkshop | Supernatural
All of Dean’s exes, including Sam lol. A fun vid.

+Pep Rally by Hollywoodgrrl | Game of Thrones
Unusual song choice, but it was a great Club Vivid vid.

+Say Hey (I Love You) by SDWolfpup | The Obamas
This has always been a favorite of mine.

+Wild One by sisabet | Channing Tatum
A fun look at his movies.

+Timber by bessyboo | Star Wars

+You Dropped a Bomb on Me by GhostTownExit | Dr. Strangelove/The Atomic Café
Picked randomly because my husband loves this song. He thought the choice of movies was interesting.

+Shatner of the Mount by Fall on Your Sword | Star Trek: William Shatner
Silly little vid that always makes me smile.

+Larger Than Life by Deejay and Mister Anderson | Pacific Rim
A fun song choice for the movie.

+It’s Tricky by bradcpu & milly | DC’s Legends of Tomorrow

 
pslasher: (Damon Elena Stefan)
Title: Love Is Not a Blessing

Fandom: Vampire Diaries TV

Relationships: Katherine Pierce/Damon Salvatore, Katherine Pierce/Stefan Salvatore, Emily Bennett & Katherine Pierce

Characters: Katherine Pierce, Damon Salvatore, Stefan Salvatore, Giuseppe Salvatore, Emily Bennett

Rating: General Audiences

Length: 10,602 words

Contains: mild spoilers

Summary: Katherine rises from the wreckage of war and tries to build a new life for herself.


Author’s Note: Un-beta’d. Title inspired by the song Heavy In Your Arms by Florence and the Machine [LJ / DW]. Contains references to, and sometimes dialog from, these episodes: S1E6 Lost Girls, S5E 500 Years of Solitude.

This is an abandoned WIP. My writing time is limited right now and this story grew into something that would need a lot of time to do well, but it’s not really what I want to be spending my time on right now. I love it a lot, though, and didn’t want to just delete it. I like to think I may come back and finish it at a later date, but that’s probably really just wishful thinking. In the meantime, someone else may enjoy it. You can read Chapter 1 as a standalone story of how Katherine and Emily meet.

Read more... )

Chapter 2: DW | LJ
pslasher: (Default)
Olderthannetfic posted a tumblr post a few weeks ago that was excellent, and also had some great follow-up comments:

http://pslasher.tumblr.com/post/134475979133/so-even-in-the-make-belive-world-people-cant-get

http://pslasher.tumblr.com/post/134475663243/so-even-in-the-make-belive-world-people-cant-get

I had ~thoughts about it all I think I want to put out there, but I wanted to put it here first for feedback if anyone is interested:

Fandom has very strong cultural taboos against monetizing fandom – for good reasons – and I think to some degree that is being transferred onto the OTW spending money on stuff not directly server related. OTW is a fannish product in the sense that fandom built it for fannish use (and here I include projects like Open Doors, Fanlore, Journal, and legal advocacy too, not just AO3), but it isn’t a fic or a vid. It’s a business. It’s hard to think of the OTW as a business that needs to function as a business, but it is. The reality is that very, very few of us have experience with non-profit Boards. I think that lack of a business background is very strongly affecting our opinions. This is not a Big Bang or gift exchange fest, or a single person (or even a team of a few people) running a single fandom archive. It’s not even the guys running animemusicvideos.org or vidders.net, and those are pretty large archives. It’s bigger than that.

I think there are things that the casual user doesn’t know about or doesn’t really think about when reading on the AO3: The OTW is registered as a non-profit business in the United States and pays yearly taxes. It raised $266,684 in the two membership drives in 2015, and likely at least a bit more from donations at other times of the year. It spent $165,513 in 2015 on AO3 server-type expenses – and that’s only the stuff directly needed to keep the archive up and running, there are other OTW expenses. The AO3 gets almost 50 million page views a week (and this number is from 2014 so it’s likely more by now). There are over 500 volunteers working for the Org, some a few hours a week, some basically as full-time jobs. It’s a business and needs to be treated as such if we want it to last a long time. In fact, it was deliberately set up as a non-profit business (http://astolat.livejournal.com/166326.html#cutid1) because that was the best chance for it to LAST and grow and thrive for decades and decades as it was passed from one hand to the next.

LJ, DW, Tumblr, Twitter, FF.Net, Pinboard, Delicious, and Wattpad (and probably others I’m not even thinking of) are also businesses, and fandom mostly gets along or in the past has gotten along just fine on them. Yes, I realize fandom has its issues with each platform, but no one is throwing a fit when they spend money on business things. Obviously the endgame is different for the OTW (being dedicated to the preservation of fanworks, not the largest possible yearly financial statement), but OTW is still a business. If we’re willing to pay for the above services (and make no mistake, we are paying for them in some way even if the direct services are free – think advertizing, or them using/selling our information) why are we not willing to pay for fandom to create the spaces we live in?

This is not just growing pains for the Org/within the Org as it transfers from a small startup to a midsized non-profit, as others have suggested. These are also growing pains for fandom as we get used to the idea of fandom having a professional, established, somewhat centralized presence in the world. I’m not saying the OTW is THE ONLY WAY to do fandom, or the best way, or anything like that! But it is a growing presence online. This is a different way to look at fandom, and it will be unsettling for some. For some, even the very thought of the OTW “speaking for all of fandom” was unsettling from the beginning. We all resisted the commercialization of fandom through things like FanLib, and I believe that was a correct call on our part. But the OTW isn’t trying to directly monetize fanworks, simply to provide a structure and environment in which to keep fanworks safe. That is an important distinction, one which I think fandom will come to terms with over time.

We are sensitive to being exploited by commercial entities – think FanLib, LiveJournal, iMeem, and so on - but the OTW isn’t trying to exploit anyone, or run off with anyone’s money. It’s ok that the OTW is a business. It’s ok for us to acknowledge it as a business, that doesn’t threaten the gift culture that fandom thrives on. In fact, it supports it: volunteers don’t get paid (with a few exceptions), they give of their time so others may enjoy the AO3, Journal, Fanlore, ect… just like they would if they were running a Big Bang, or single fandom archive. The structure of the OTW is very different than that of a Big Bang, but people giving of their time to run them both is basically the same. The OTW spending money to keep itself working well and efficiently (even by paying people) doesn’t interfere with fan culture – it promotes it by making sure it lasts for longer than it does when we rely on the short lifespan and waxing and waning support of regular commercial ventures.

In the meantime we may have to put up with the court of public opinion which will have its outcry over things it doesn’t understand. And I include myself in the camp of not always understanding everything about this situation – but I am trying. I think we’re all building this new fannish experience and infrastructure together. We’re experiencing growing pains, but fandom is strong and we will get through this – as we always do.
pslasher: (Default)
Matty and Lady Oscar, the new OTW Board members, take office tomorrow! I'm excited for news/updates.

I did some reading yesterday and came across some interesting posts.

A post about Nonprofit Management 101 by sara that had a different viewpoint on the whole issue, particularly that the Elections Committee post was unprofessional. I hadn't thought about it that way, though I still am glad they did it. How else are we the public to know what the hell is going on? There was an interesting comment by synecdochic (one of the founders of DW, who knows her shit as far as I can tell) on what she would do first as a new Board member: survey every single Org volunteer and ask some difficult questions. I really like that, and would like to see that undertaken. https://sara.dreamwidth.org/534683.html

A post at Andrea Horbinski's DW on the 2011 Board elections: http://ahorbinski.dreamwidth.org/25871.html Interesting snippits below the cut:

Read more... )
pslasher: (Default)
SlashReport podcast is having an episode on the recent OTW issues. I think they may also be having an OTW staffer on, based on their tweets. They haven't recorded yet so you may still have time to ask them questions if you want: http://www.slashreport.com/wp/?page_id=10

Here are my questions for them:

1. Do you think we can get people to maintain enough interest in the OTW operations long enough to hold the Board responsible and effect change? (We won't get everyone who reads on the AO3 of course, but a larger portion then is currently informed) I have very high hopes for Matty and Lady Oscar, but they won't be around forever and some problems may take more than 3 years to fix. And there are more people involved in decision making/carrying out decisions than just the Board, some of whom may not cooperate with Matty and LO (just speaking theoretically here).

2. And if so, is having an active and informed membership going to do anything to make the OTW a better place long term? Can we the members effect change from the outside? People have been complaining about AO3 things for a while now. For example, the podficcers have been very vocal about their desire to have a unique podfic posting form because certain stats are completely different than from fic (file length, as opposed to word count). To be fair, that is likely a significant bit of code to undertake which is probably why it hasn’t happened – but it still hasn’t happened. But other things that are less difficult to do have been done. For example, the K-Pop, Korean Drama, Japanese Drama, and Jpop tags are things that those fans had asked for for years. Eventually those fans got their tags, proving that the Org will listen and respond at least sometimes. How do you think we the members can best effect big changes in the OTW?

What do you guys think of that?

And here is a links post/sort of write up I sent in, mostly because I kind of wanted to hash some things out in my own head.


Read more... )
pslasher: (Default)
HOLY SHIT YOU GUYS, THE OTW BOARD JUST ALL RESIGNED! Like, that is some epic fannish wank! So, links:

The Board elects to appoint Andrea back into office, even though the people don't want her. Andrea declines and the rest of the existing Board resign effective December 15 (this doesn't include the two new people that just got elected in!): http://transformativeworks.org/news/board-directors-update

The Elections Committee condemns this act: http://transformativeworks.org/news/board-appointment-last-place-candidate-empty-board-seat

The people, including OTW staffers in all different OTW positions, are furious (there are links to the chat where this all happened, you just have to read down for it): http://otwelections-unofficial.tumblr.com/


I actually think this will be a good thing for the OTW. We are rid of people who clearly aren't putting the Org's best interest first, and we have the best people possible already in place to start building a new and better Board who can actually serve the Org and the members. Still, I never expected it to go down like this.
pslasher: (Default)
I voted today, and it was very easy!! (I want a little "I Voted" digital sticker now!) If you're a member of the OTW you should have gotten an email today with a link to the ballot. If you didn't get an email and think you should have (you should have if you've donated $10.00 dollars or more to the OTW in the last year before October 6th and checked the "become an OTW member" box) check your spam box and then contact the elections committee at elections@transformativeworks.org. I've got voting info and my own opinions here, but you should do what you feel is right. Get out and vote! Help support the Org that makes things which touch all of our lives so deeply!

Also, svmadelyn is making a Google Group where OTW supporters can talk about OTW issues and hopefully be a positive force for change. I think this is amazing! I had thought about doing something like that, because I wanted that place to exist and because I believe all the people out there in fandom deserve to have our voices heard, but I just don't know if I have the time to dedicate. I plan to join the group though!
pslasher: (Default)
Guys, the OTW is holding its yearly election and it is SO IMPORTANT that you vote this year! This is the first contested election in four years, and it’s vital that we get some good, new people into office. Here are the candidates, and a list of questions that they were given the opportunity to answer.
Here is everything from this year’s election cycle, including the chat transcripts and voting instructions, with some simpler instructions here. There is a tumblr about the elections, otwelections-unofficial, which has reblogged some statements by the candidates and Nikisha Sanders that I found valuable and have reblogged at my own tumblr. You have to be a current member of the OTW (meaning you have to have donated at least $10.00 in the last year under your real name) to vote in the election. Even if you can’t vote, signal boosting the info will help spread the word.

There are two seats open for voting to be filled with this election. After the election there will be five Board members serving the Org. There will be at least one new person voted onto the Board this year, but two would be better because it would give them more voting power against the existing Board. That would give us a better chance for change, which is desperately needed. Andrea Horbinski is a current Board member who is campaigning for reelection. Here’s why I feel we shouldn’t reelect Andrea, and instead vote in new people:


1. There is currently a complete lack of transparency with everything the Board does, including what happens during board meetings, why they make the policy changes they do, and what they spend their time on. Supposedly they spend at least 40 hours a week on board work, but nobody knows exactly what they are doing because they aren’t publishing that info, and (based on the five new candidate’s statements) they aren’t available to anyone in the rest of the Org for help or questions (see point 2). As far as I can tell from Andrea’s statements, they have no interest in changing their level of transparency because in order to “safeguard” the Org the Board shouldn’t be taking about “anything relating to personnel decisions, the details of the finances, information that may leave the organization in a vulnerable position should it become public knowledge, and anything that the public doesn't have a compelling need to know” – which is apparently everything. That is a serious problem. While I don’t think the board should publicize private “Human Resources” type discussion (they shouldn’t really be having many of these discussions in the first place, see below), bank account type information, or the specifics of our internet safety details (whatever they do to keep our websites safe from hackers and other malicious types), almost everything else is need-to-know by its members, who pay for the Org to exist in the first place. Even if they choose to keep some stuff confidential from the voting public, the rest of the OTW volunteers and staffers (or at bare minimum the committee chairs) need to know what they are doing and why. Accountability is very important for anyone in a position of power, much less the people leading the entire Org.


2. It sounds as if the Board alternately isn’t doing the job they were elected to do or are overstepping the scope of their job. As Andrea is a current Board member who presumably is complicit in the following points (since I have no evidence to indicate otherwise I have to assume she agrees with the actions of the Board) I believe it’s best to vote her out and vote in new people who hopefully will do better.

a. Office Hours (a preset time where one or more Board members would be available to chat with anyone) are no longer being offered, and regular Board meetings are apparently frequently canceled due to not enough members showing up, or there being “nothing to discuss.”

b. It was a recurrent statement in the Q&A’s that the Board doesn’t answer emails or committee proposals in a timely manner, if at all. Some said there was often no indication at all the Board had even gotten their reports or proposals. This sounds like a complete failure to do the job, and is completely unacceptable.

c. It was also a recurrent statement that the Board blocks, sidelines, or attempts to change committee proposals (preventing them from doing their jobs or doing them in a timely manner), and frequently interferes with how the committee chairs go about doing their jobs. Several of the candidates said that the Board shouldn’t have any say in how the Chairs run their committee so long as the committee is functioning well and doing its job. I don’t know if I would go so far as to say the Board should have no involvement, but interference should not be the way things are routinely done. Interference includes the Board approving all staff changes to each committee (you can see all the committees here, and there are a lot, though some are more active than others http://transformativeworks.org/about/committee-descriptions ), and handling or raising “complaints against staffers” during the Board meetings – both are things we know the Board does. All of the new candidates said that due to their position of authority over everyone in the Org, Board should never handle complaints against a staff member and several candidates further stated that that if an outside party is needed to mediate it should be Volunteers & Recruiting (which handles volunteer “applications” and training) and that the committee chairs should handle routine staff changes, with Board oversite only when a chair asks for help or when a chair appears to be failing at their job. While I have no direct knowledge of the Board doing any of these things, if all the new candidates are saying the same thing I think we should listen to them.


3. There are significant and serious financial issues – there is no yearly budget, there is generally not a yearly accounting of how the OTW’s money is spent (and the one that exists is old and extremely vague), they spend money on in-person retreats ($18,000 last year) but have not produced any results from those retreats (nor do the retreats include a significant number of committee chairs to ensure general Org representation), and there are reports of the bills not being paid on time and the volunteers work being disrupted because of lack of necessary tools (multiple times over the last 2-3 years). Serious changes are needed, and all the new candidates advocate for this. I have no idea what Andrea’s viewpoint is on this since the Board doesn’t publish meeting info which would show us how she votes, and in the answer she did give she didn’t give any indication as to her personal opinion. (Though I will say her answers indicate the Board seems to have plans to become more financially responsible.)


4. Many of the new candidates mention multiple instances of abusive behavior by the Board towards volunteers at all levels (general volunteers, staffers, and committee chairs) – and most of the new candidates are new to the OTW within 2-3 years so this is an ongoing issue. Some of the new candidates say that people are frequently scared to speak out about things that they think are wrong or that could be improved or changed for fear of being “fired” from the Org or their positions. This is unacceptable.

a. During this election cycle Nikisha Sanders, who was one of the candidates, was removed from her OTW positions by the Board, despite protest from the elections committee and the other committees she worked on. Andrea, who was a sitting Board member at the time and who benefits from one of her competitors being removed, says, “I can't actually comment specifically on anything related to the matter you're referring to due to directors' legal duty to safeguard the organization. That said, I have in the past and will continue to abstain from votes in which I have a COI, and it is the expectation that other directors will do the same.” That statement was not given in the public announcement about Nikisha’s removal, it was given during one of the chats after a user asked specifically about it. Since likely very few of the AO3 membership will actually read those chat transcripts, this isn’t exactly widely public knowledge. The Board apparently saw no cause for concern that this conflict of interest could be construed as unethical behavior by one of its members. This is concerning to me. There are people (including Andrea’s fellow candidates and Nikisha herself) who are gravely concerned about the Board tampering with the elections process, and how far the Board will go with abuses of power. Initially I thought that maybe Nikisha wasn’t doing her job, which would be a reasonable cause for concern, since (as stated above) the Org’s finances are in terrible shape. However, we don’t know because no one outside of the Org was privy to any part of that decision making process. We have no way to know if Nikisha was following instructions as voted on by the majority of the Board members, or making decisions on her own. In this comment she gave on one of her DW posts on the matter, she basically said her authority was stripped by the Board for no good reason, not due to any fault of her own. She says, “the attitudes of some of the Board have increasingly shifted toward wanting Board to have complete and total control, without facing questions from staff or volunteers, over aspects of the org's management. The general approach I met with was "We have the money, why should you have any say?" along with being told that looking at the big picture for the org was no longer my job.” Based on everything I’ve seen (including the fact that Andrea initially answered VERY FEW of the Q&A questions, though it seems she has since gone back and answered more), I’m inclined to believe it. As I said before, accountability is vital for the Board, and if no one knows why they do what they do or has the power to change their behavior then there is no accountability. This has to change.

b. There is documentation that Andrea has been reprimanded for abusive behavior at least once and had to apologize publically for “losing her temper” with a volunteer. (It is reassuring to hear that her fellow Board members had the integrity to call her on her poor behavior) Generally I believe in giving people second chances and an opportunity to learn and grow, but this taken in light with all the other information means to me that Andrea shouldn’t be serving on our Board.


5. Several of the new candidates express particular interest in supporting the AO3’s growth and development, which is of great interest to me as a user. I love all of the OTW’s projects, but the AO3 is the one I use the vast majority of the time. I am increasingly frustrated with the AO3’s lack of development. The AO3 has been in beta for seven years and in recent years has made no visible progress towards fulfilling its roadmap, which itself is a drastic change (a negative change, if you ask me) from the 2010 Roadmap. The ability to host fanart was supposed to be “coming soon” in 2010, but hasn’t gone anywhere. From my understanding, the ability to directly host fanvids was one of the fundamental reasons for starting the AO3 (see the Fan Video Roadmap), and again there is no progress on this. I know from my time in the AO3 that there are plans to change the way fandoms and different Media Types are categorized at a basic coding level (in preparation for hosting multimedia content) through what was being called the Category Change when I was there, but news of that hasn’t been made public and I have no idea where in the process they are. I have no idea what effect Andrea has had on this lack of progress so it may be unfair to blame her for this, but I’d rather have Board members in office that have expressed specific interest in developing the AO3.


There are other issues that were brought up during the chats and Q & A’s, but these are the significant ones to me. Basically, I feel that anyone new would be an improvement, and I got very excited about many of our candidates. Here are the candidates I like, in the order I will be voting for them (and it was hard even to pick this order!):

Matty Bowers – I was very impressed with her statements, and think she will work well with a potentially hostile Board because she has experience taking dysfunctional committees and making them healthy and functional.
Aline Carrao – I am excited about her statements, and again I think she will work well with a potentially hostile Board.
Atiya Hakeem – I am super excited about her experience with the Category Change workgroup and hope that she would foster AO3 growth.
Alex Tischer – She also has mentioned wanting to focus more on AO3 development, which I love.
Katarina Harju – I love her background in bookkeeping, that is so needed right now.

I also want to say that OTW elections happen every year, and I sincerely hope that those from this group that don’t get elected come back next year so I can vote for them then!
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I had a Vividcon viewing party at my house again this year and I thought it would be cool to make a list of all the vids I showed at the party, and the others that I really liked but didn't have time to show. It grew into a monster rec list - I don't know if I'll ever do a list this comprehensive again! But I think most of you may find at least a couple of interesting things to watch. If you love vids it’s worth the $40 yearly fee so you can stream everything (including some stuff that isn’t up online!) and get a DVD of some of the new vids.


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Last weekend I mainlined all of Sense8 on Netflix (I'm not sure if it's anywhere else?) and I LOVED it. Here's why I think you'd love it, too. I've tried not to spoil anything, but there are some well marked additional comments at the bottom of the post that are mildly spoilery.

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pslasher: (Vampire Diaries)
Title: The Infinity Between Us (Sharp With the Glitter of Memory)

Fandom: The Vampire Diaries (TV)
Relationships: Damon Salvatore & Stefan Salvatore
Characters:
Damon Salvatore, Stefan Salvatore, Giuseppe Salvatore, Mrs. Salvatore
Category: Gen
Rating: General
Length: 6,659 words
Contains: mild spoilers, canonical character death that occurs offscreen
Summary: Life changes you, and some things are irreversible.

Author’s Note: I stopped paying attention to cannon for my writing a while ago: my stories go AU during Season 3 and I don’t consider this series to be at all compliant with ‘current’ canon after Season 4, and I stopped incorporating flashbacks into my stories after Season 5. Therefore, my ‘Mrs. Salvatore’ is different than Lillian Salvatore as depicted in Season 6. In fact, I only discovered her existence in the series by accident just before posting this story, as I am currently way behind on TVD. I like the way I’ve written her and have no wish to catch up on months of show before posting, so consider yourself warned that she will likely be considerably OCC, starting with her name. Also, other characters may become OOC as I continue to write this series.

I’ve adjusted Damon’s birth date from 1839 to 1843 to make him closer in age to Stefan. I always thought of them being relatively close in age until I learned (again, while writing this) there was actually a larger age gap, but by then my impression of them was cemented. I don’t feel it has any bearing on the actual story the show presents, so I’ve decided to leave it.

Beta by [livejournal.com profile] scorpiod1.





 

 

 

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Meme

Apr. 22nd, 2015 01:07 pm
pslasher: (Default)
Stolen from [livejournal.com profile] thalialunacy

1. Go to page 7 (or 77) of your current WIP.
2. Go to line 7.
3. Copy the next 7 sentences or paragraphs and post them as they’re written.

Lol, this is totally random.


“Yes, M’am,” Fidelia said from where she was standing quietly beside the buffett. She curtsied and left the room.

“You may go no further than the back meadow, and I expect you home by mid afternoon,” Father said.

“Yes, Sir, we understand,” Stefan said eagerly, grinning across to Damon. They hurried through their breakfast and raced out to the stable.

“Young Masters! I hear we have a fine outing planned for today,” James said, tightening the buckle on the strap holding Damon’s holstered rifle on the side of his saddle. “We’re escaping to the meadow and away from our lessons,” Stefan said, reaching up to pat Blaze’s noze.

James laughed, his dark face crinkling with a smile, and pulled the step stool over to Stefan’s horse. “Climb up, then, and let’s go.” They swung up onto their horses and James mounted his.

“I bet I can beat you to the meadow,” Damon said, and heeled Blaze and took off.

“No, you can’t!” Stefan shouted from behind, and then the pounding of hooves started up.
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Title: I am My Beloved’s, and My Beloved is Mine
Fandom: Star Trek: AOS
Relationships: Christine Chapel/Leonard McCoy/Spock
Rating: Explicit
Length: 5,285
Contains: PWP, sex pollen, spoilers for TOS
Summary: There’s a Tribble in Sick Bay that makes for a very unusual day at work.

Author’s Note: Hovering over the Hebrew will provide an English translation. Beta by [personal profile] sangueuk, with help for the pop-up html from [personal profile] xela_fic. This was inspired by a random comment by [livejournal.com profile] seashadows during a [livejournal.com profile] st_respect Ship Olympics party post. This proves that my brain is indeed random as fuck since this stuck with me for so long, and since I actually got my shit together to write this before everything else that needs to be written. 

Also, after 6 years of St:AOS fandom how am I putting the first Chapel/McCoy/Spock fanwork on AO3? Shame on you fandom for not living up to IDIC! ;D



 

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Writing is like meditation.  You sit down to do it knowing that it will take your whole concentration to do it well, and yet you know you can never give your whole concentration for the time that is needed.  Random thoughts pop up, you get hungry, you remember something you really need to do, or suddenly doing this other thing seems REALLY FAR MORE INTERESTING and you click over to it.

So you do like you do when meditating: recognize that your attention has wondered, bring it back to the task in a neutral way without guilt or shame, and start over again like you never strayed, even while you know it will happen again and again despite your best intentions.  This is how you write, one little block of time after another.

But that is ok, it is just how the mind works and you have to accept it.  At least, it's how my mind works.  I haven't meditated in years, but I did get better at focusing then and I have gotten better at focusing now while writing.  I'm much better at catching my attention wondering at the beginning, instead of realizing 60 minutes later that I was way off track and stalled.  I can't tell you what a relief that is - I was convinced for years that I couldn't write because I couldn't keep my focus on the screen long enough to actually write something.  I've learned the hard way to catch myself wondering, and to learn how to keep the words flowing (often- but I'm still really working on this).  Throwing up a [research this later!] type thing really helps me keep momentum - I think if I'd known about that years ago, and really understood that your first draft doesn't have to be perfect!, I'd have kept writing instead of convincing myself for years that I couldn't do it.  Also, I have really learned the value of a good outline, and that I am an outliner to my core.  Again, even though the outline was overstressed in school I somehow MISSED THAT FUCKING CLUE as to how to actually get stuff done.

Eh, what can you do?  Life is about learning, there's just no other way to do it.

And now for some inspiration.  I found this interesting Goodreads post: Keep Writing! Authors Share Their Best Advice on Overcoming Writer’s Block.  I love these:

Writing is a job. Some days you don't feel like doing your job. But there is no "teacher's block" or "dentist's block." I can't figure out why we have created this mysterious phrase .. only for writers .. which only means "don't feel like doing this right now." - Lois Lowry



The trick is to identify what is holding you back, and address that issue separately. Usually, 90% of the time, it is fear — and usually (again 90% of the time) it is fear that your work isn't good enough. Whenever I encounter that fear, my response is: "Who cares?" I'm not in charge of whether or not my work is great, or how people will like it. I am only in charge of the process. I came here to be a writer, and so I write. Set your kitchen timer for 30 minutes a day, and write something. It doesn't have to be good. It doesn't even have to be finished. It just has to BE. - Elizabeth Gilbert



ARGH! There's no such thing. Seriously: THERE. IS. NO. SUCH. THING. You know what there is? There's a bunch of problems, creative and otherwise, that can stop you writing. They are not block. They are important skills. For example: very often, around the middle of a book, I grind to a halt. I can go no further, everything I write is catastrophically stupid. I tend to get very upset about that, and I'm unmentionably annoying to be around for a few days. My wife generally has to remind me how to fix the problem.
The way you fix it is you go back to the beginning and you get rid of all the junk, broken stuff you put in back before you understood what the hell the book was actually about, the stuff that is now preventing you from doing the really amazing things that will make the book special. You have to re-envision the whole thing, understand what you meant but could not at the time express. Sometimes that means cutting heavily, sometimes it means changing great swathes, sometimes it's a question of reading that crucial passage that carries your book in potential and taping it up over your desk.
Calling that moment "writer's block" is slandering yourself. It's not a block, it's the process. Don't demonise it! Beg for it! It's what stops you from writing lousy prose, saggy plots, unsatisfying endings. LOVE YOUR CRITICAL FACULTY.
Alternatively: at any time in the course of a book, I may find I cannot write it, bash away at it, hate myself, and then realise it's because I haven't done my chores. I haven't paid the credit card bill or whatever.
Understand: your ability to write is bound up with who you are and with your moods. It is tied to whether you are happy, sad, tense, relaxed, blah. It is you. So when something is wrong with your inkflow, that means either that you've goofed creatively or that you're not fixing something broken elsewhere in your world.
Love your mutant power. Do not try to force it to do something. Learn to listen. - Nick Harkaway


And now I have to get off the internet for the night :)

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A while back I requested fanfic recs for my bookclub book choice.  I'm so sorry it's taken me so long to update y'all on the event, but in case you're still interested here it is.  Thank you [livejournal.com profile] fleete and [livejournal.com profile] lazlet for the recs!

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Fanfic comes from an impulse to expand upon the original work that inspired the fic writer.  It can be written to fill in a gap in 'canon' (this is how fans refer to the original work that inspired the fanfic), to correct what the fan sees as an error in canon, to ask ‘what if?’ and take that new scenario anywhere the fic author wants to go with it.  Fanfic authors also love exploring the mundane details of regular life that you don’t always get to see in canon - ex. what is daily life like for an Avenger?  Also, pairing anyone together in romances that weren’t in the canon.  Fanfic is what you get when someone explores their ideas in a publication that is not restricted by traditional publishing.
 
Reading fanfic differs from reading original works of fiction because it is based so heavily on the canon.  Most fanfic won’t include quite the same level of detail you’ll get from original fic because the writer presumes that almost everyone reading already knows what X character looks and sounds like, or the details about Y event that was so important to the story or character.  Therefore, I’ve tried to pick fandoms (what we call the communities that build up around a particular canon) that most of you have at least some passing knowledge of, or can watch relatively easily.  The exception to that ‘rule’ is the Alternate Universe genre, which is where the fic author puts the characters into a brand new situation completely unrelated to the one in the original work.  Taking the characters from "Lord of the Rings" and writing about them in outer space is an example.  This makes almost any fandom accessible to someone who has never seen or read the canon, and I’ve included one in my selection - "A Place Where We Only Say Goodbye".
 
As a whole, there are no censuring limits on what can be written in a fic.  Fanfic writers often include explicit violence or sex, or content which can be disturbing in any number of ways.  To the best of my knowledge none of the stories I’ve picked are explicitly erotic, but some contain other mature content.  This content is often communicated to readers through the 'Tags' or in the 'Notes' at the top of the story and is usually thorough.  I've included relevant tags in the story headers below.  If you have any questions about any given story please ask me about it.  I've included some notes about each fic selection (including the length of time it would take you to watch the source material for each story), and indicated them with asterisks.  Reviews by other Fanfic readers are italicized and have been gently edited to remove 'spoilers'.
 

My Fanfic Bookclub Submission List


Freezer Burn by Domenika Marzione | The Avengers all fandoms | 194,178 Words, ~746 pages | Action/Adventure

The adventures of Steve Rogers, defrosted soldier, who is missing time but not really all that lost. He's got a surprisingly broad knowledge of lettuces, a working grasp of modern technology, and may or may not be using both to mess with his teammates and save the world.
**Set directly after The Avengers movie, run time 143 minutes.  It also includes stuff from the comics, but I don't think you need knowledge of the comics to enjoy the story.

“This is possibly the most articulately adult, mature, rational, and believable fic I have ever read.
I am so intrigued by the slow build of crime/thriller elements, the artful way you threw in the politics of agencies and made steve NOT. DUMB. but in a rational way without being bound by hyperbole emotions.
Also the perfect balance of the avengers being a decent team but also having their own lives- as a group of people in their 30's-40's is wont to do. LOVE. IT.I feel like i'm reading a sydney sheldon novel with how believable your male leads are in action and thought, and how matter-of-fact your female leads are.
The military life details and understandings are EXCELLENT. I am engaged to an airforce engineer and I truly appreciate that you have given this facet of steve's life depth, insight, and details!” – Elemenohp

“Breathtakingly done. Thank you for writing such a fantastic, immersive, engrossing story with a layer of realism you rarely find in the canon works, nevermind the fanfiction. I've been enthralled with this since I started it, and have been reading as voraciously as my schedule would allow. You do good work.” – PrimaryFeather

“Wow, that was seriously epic. Loved all the day-to-day details of Steve situating himself in the "now," with the food details (OMG, totally drooling over all the food descriptions) and picking up art again. You write great characters - loved all the team interaction, the insight into Natasha and Bruce, Tony and the way different people react to him - all very believable and honest. Loved your OCs as well (um, I think they're OC's; I'm not well versed on the comics), and all the bureaucratic/ military hierarchy details came though very well. Thank you for sharing this!” – joyouslee

“I am really enjoying the MCU but have never read any of the comics (don't get on with the media), so I suspect there are lots of references I'm missing, but conversely there is undoubtedly benefit in being able to be surprised by what happens next more so than I might otherwise be.
Your writing is always like catnip to me, I always end up more invested in your characters(/characterisations) and universes than the source materiel. As always, I am in love with your characterisation, your long and wonderfully plotty story arc, the funny, the accuracy and realism you bring; you have this knack for lots of detail without unnecessary exposition, and, particularly in the more person centred scenes, leaving just the right amount up to the reader's imagination, and that brevity always seem to pack a more powerful punch.” – vonknibble

“Wow, this was without a doubt the most ambitious, amazing, detailed and awesome story I have ever read in Avengers fandom. It took me ages to get through (which is a good thing!!) and I don't even know what to flail most about. The whole thing is simple awe-inspiring. Thanks so much for writing and sharing it.” – pulangaraw


A Place Where We Only Say Goodbye by weezly14 | Dr. Who | 59,486 words, ~245 pages | Angst, Romance
""And I knew that you were a truth I would rather lose than to have never have lain beside at all."  He's served Rose Tyler coffee almost every day for a year, but he's never worked up the courage to really talk to her. Then he finds himself stuck repeating the same day a year in the past. Is this a chance at a different ending?"

**Fanfic can take the characters from the show and place them in a completely different setting so you can see how they stand up to entirely new circumstances. This is called an Alternate Universe - in this case it's a Coffee Shop AU, which is a common fanfic trope.  It's a great way to get into a new fandom if you haven't watched the show because you don’t need any knowledge of the show to understand the plot of the story, as is the case for this fic.  The 'Angst' tag is often used for situations of emotional difficulty.  If you're interested in checking out the characters you can watch Dr. Who 2006 (Season/Series2) on Amazon Prime, iTunes, or Netflix - a good one to start with might be School Reunion.  Runtime for each episode is about 45 minutes.

"God, I am so in love with this verse. And I'm going to be that person who'll suggest you just go right ahead and sell this to publishers. Get an editor, an agent, anyone. Because if something like Twilight or 50 Shades or Mortal Instruments got published, I don't see why the hell this can't. Because the premise, the pacing, the characterizations... as a fellow writer and storyteller, I am just so, so in love with this.
At one point, I was reminded of Audrey Niffenegger's book, The Time Traveler's Wife. I know that the plots are quite different, but this story has encouraged a similar level of emotional attachment to the protagonists as with that book. I do not doubt for a moment that if you let someone who has not even heard of Doctor Who or the term 'fanfiction' read this, it would still be much appreciated. I could go on and on, but let me just end it with a thank you. Thank you for giving us this absolutely wonderful story. I look forward to the day you'll get to treat us to a brand new literary journey with The Doctor and Rose." – rarelycanon

 
Dudly Dursley and the New Normal by alikat522 | Harry Potter | 53,167 words, ~226 pages | Drama/Tragedy
Bad things happen. Life gets strange. Dudley tries to carve out a little bit of normality in a world that has gone mad around him.

**Fanfic can redeem characters that are portrayed as bad or difficult in the book by putting them through events that give them the opportunity for growth.  This one is not offered as a download at Fanfiction.net.  If it is chosen you can either read it on the web, or I will make sure an ebook copy is available to anyone who wants it.  There are 7 books and 8 movies in the series - obviously a lot to watch if you're starting fresh.  I know the club read most of the books together and I think most of you have seen all the movies so I thought I'd take a chance and include it.  We'll see if it gets picked :)

“Thanks for this unusual story! I think what I liked most is how you stayed in character for Dudley AND combined that with the important after war themes. Great original characters too.” – Mari83

“An excellent tale, well told. I thought you did a good job of providing a realistic journey for Dudley to choose to step up instead of passively fading away. I like that you ended with hope and that you didn't brush away the aftershocks of the war and the cultural divides as if everything would go back to just fine after Voldemort was dead. All in all, thank you for writing!” – Phoenix Flight

“Great story. Dudley's journey just fits - no hurried redemption, no overdose of angst, a good, logical mix of drama and evolving characters.” – Starfox5

“Great story! I loved the format you used with news articles at the end of each chapter. And the final one - Molly's article was a perfect ending to the story, put the message of the whole fic into perspective. You are so right about Dudley's "side character" status, which is not only limited to canon. Even in the HP fanfic community, his story is rarely explored and his character seldom a protagonist. So bravo! Great fic all-around!” – Inexplicably Waiting

“I have not read such fanfiction in a very long time. Incredible portrayal of characters. Dudley's transformation from Big D was the in-depth reveal that I always wanted from jkr. And making him a werewolf? Clever. I also loved how you let readers learn what happened to other characters though Dudley did not realize the significance. Very well done. I will be keeping my eyes open for new posts!” – bloombaby26

“I was lucky enough to stumble across your story today and got to read it all at once. It was heartbreaking and warming all at once.
Your characters didn't pull a deus ex machina and make everything perfect at the end or "magically" make everything better by getting involved, but they did make a difference by moving past apathy and taking action.
You showed Percy finding the cause he was looking for. Loose ends that bothered me in the books were neatly wrapped up or proved to not be loose ends at all. And, quite importantly, Dudley found a new normal. That's not an insignificant achievement.” – Code Aster


An Avalanche Of Detour Signs by gyzym | Sherlock (TV) | 56,053 Words, ~267 pages | Romance, Sexual Trauma
In which Molly Hooper gets a job, gets a degree, breaks a heart, has her heart broken, falls in love, keeps a secret, saves a life, runs a morgue, falls apart, pulls it together, and finds exactly what she didn't know she was looking for--not necessarily in that order.

**Fanfic gives minor characters, particularly women in this case, a lot more life than they are given onscreen.  An audiobook version of this story is available here, recorded by magicranberries.  This story comes after the season finale of Season/Series 2 of BBC Sherlock.  Each season consists of 3 1.5 hour episodes, totaling almost 9 hours for both seasons.  You can stream/buy them on Amazon Prime, iTunes, and Netflix, or you can borrow my copies if needed.

"How do you take these characters that we know relatively little about, and breathe life into them, and make us care about them, and put them in relationships that are loving and wonderful and amazing and fully complement the characters?" - Wex

"What an utterly gorgeous piece of work--the story and the art. Love and adoration to you both! I wasn't intending to read all of this in one go, but there wasn't any way to stop. The whole arc unveiled itself so smoothly, so effortlessly--just spot on, from start to finish." – sheffiesharp


Kista by Jane Land | Star Trek Original Series | 94,060 Words, ~365 pages | Romance, Drama
Spock and Christine are stranded on a planet with a paleolithic technology level, they have to adapt to the local culture and a relationship develops between them.

Kista is "...an attempt to rescue one of Star Trek's female characters from an artificially imposed case of foolishness. Try to think objectively for a minute about what we know of Christine Chapel's background, education, accomplishments... and you will come up with a far more interesting character than she was ever allowed to be...I like her. I hope you do too."

**Kista was originally published in 1986 by Jane Land in a Zine she put together herself and mailed out to those who wrote to request it.  This was the way fanfiction was widely dispersed before the internet came about, and the way fans kept in touch with each other.  The story has since been put up on the web, where you can download your own copy.  It does contain romance with at least a couple of sex scenes, but best I can tell they aren’t explicit.  You can read about Chapel here (including some of the most significant episodes for the Chapel/Spock relationship) and you can stream/buy original episodes from Amazon Prime, Netflix, or iTunes, or stream the episodes for free on YouTube.  Each episode runs 50 minutes.

“So good to see this wonderful piece of writing published here, and now easy to read!” – Jackie

 

We Two Alone by Shoreleave | Star Trek 2009 | 101,877 Words, ~350 pages | Angst, Slavery, Major Character Illness/Injury, Hurt/Comfort, Dark, Drama, Action/Adventure, Friendship
"Academy fic. Dr. Leonard McCoy thinks he has nothing in common with command-track cadet Jim Kirk, until a series of events forces them together. When a simple training mission is derailed into a seemingly hopeless situation, both have to learn to trust one another, and they’ll need all their wits and survival skills to stay alive.
Author's Note: I love plot holes, and here’s a biggie:

Pike: “And if all else fails, fall back and rendezvous with the fleet in the Laurentian system. Kirk, I’m promoting you to first officer.”

Huh? I mean, that doesn’t make any sense! Jim’s just an untried cadet, and surely there are more seasoned officers on the Enterprise who should be first officer. Unless… does Pike know something about Kirk that we don’t? If he does, it must be pretty compelling…

That got me thinking, and it was the inspiration for this story."

**Fanfic of reboots re-imagines the cannon, just like the reboot itself does. In this case, Jim Kirk's time in Starfleet Academy and on Tarsus IV.  'Hurt/Comfort' is a tag that indicates one of the characters has gotten sick or injured, often significantly, and is cared for by another character.  This is a prequel to the 2009 movie, which runs 126 minutes.

"Hello new head canon. This was absolutely fantastic! One of the best survival stories I've ever had the pleasure of reading!" – dentalfloss

"Superb characterization, clinically tidy, excellent work with the storyline, I'm definitely coming back to this one later. Also, I would totally watch this movie. Even if it wasn't Star Trek." - casicastiel


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Hi folks!  Long time no see!  I come asking favors.  Pretty soon my bookclub will be going through our selection process for the next year.  My list of books is due at the end of April.  I've decided to do something wild and put fanfics on my list this time around.  My book club is awesome - they all know I read and write fanfic (though I don't tell them what I write, I'm not that ballsy) and they think it's cool.  They encouraged me to make Fanfic the theme for my list this year and I decided to do it because I'd love to introduce them to some amazing fic.  There are just two issues:

1. I'm not comfortable putting slash or femslash on the list.  I'm not ready to fess up to that in our group meeting, and I'm definitely not interested in putting something on the list that I think most of them really don't want to read.  I think a couple of them would be cool with slash if it was well written and maybe not too overly erotic, but not everyone.

2. The only rule of our club is that the book has to be brand new to everyone, so that means I can't just rec the few Gen or Het fics that I know are good.  I'm not the biggest Gen or Het reader, so I don't have much in my To Read file that I can go to.  Thus, I need help!

The club members read all genres, from romance to action, so feel free to rec anything that meets the above criteria.  Here are some fandoms that I think would work for the group at large:
Harry Potter (the club read the first 4 or 5 books together so this is a great choice - except I don't know the HP world well enough to get to the good stuff easily)
Star Trek (amazingly, I'm not finding as much Gen or Het that will work as I expected)
Star Wars (Ditto the HP note)
Avengers (Probably best to stick with movie-verse, but I know one member has comics knowledge)
Sherlock BBC (They are short enough to binge watch if they go with that choice, and I can loan them my copies if needed)
AU's from any fandom that don't require any cannon knowledge

I've got some choices lined up at this pinboard tag but I'd love some more to pick from.  Oh, also I'm trying to pick novel-length stories.  The definition of a novel-length story apparently varies greatly, so I'm going with 40,000 words because it's what the SFFWA specifies.  If it's a couple of thousand words short I'd still consider it.

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“First forget inspiration. Habit is more dependable. Habit will sustain you whether you're inspired or not. Habit will help you finish and polish your stories. Inspiration won't. Habit is persistence in practice.”
~Octavia E. Butler, from Bloodchild and Other Stories

Butler is one of my favorite SciFi writers.  She writes female characters that are amazing: always of color, almost always queer in some way (bisexual, or polyamorous and living in alternative relationships, or shape-shifters who push the boundaries of what it means to be male or female), always complex with an arc for growth, always the main character.  Her words are often simple and bare, but she has a way of cutting through to the very meat of a character or situation that is extremely powerful.  She can be very dark at times, but there is always something - some strength or hope for the future - that I can connect with to carry me through the struggle.  I always finish her books and mull over the characters and world for days after.

She is an inspiration to me, and even though my style is different I always hope my writing is as powerful as hers.  In the process of looking for the source of this quote, I found out that each of the short stories in the collection listed above have essays by Butler after them.  I'm very excited to read them and see what else she has to say.
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I've just finished the book Writing Alone and With Others by Pat Schneider, and found it to be wonderfully inspirational.  I also thought that a lot of her beliefs on writing belonging to everyone, and how to encourage the beginner to write, have a ton in common with fandom - but that's a post for another time.  Right now, I want to highlight one of the many things I marked as inspirational:

"There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening which is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique.  And if you block it, it will never exist.
~Martha Graham, p. 60 of Writing Alone


This reminded me of the Hummus Essay, aka: Slash Fiction Is Like a Banquet ("the hummus essay") by Arduinna:
Slash fiction is like a banquet. It's wonderful. A big, pot-luck banquet. There's everything from appetizers to mashed potatoes to curries to stews to green-bean casserole to peanut-butter sandwiches (apologies to the UK fen who just cringed ) to fifteen different kinds of pasta to cookies to cheesecake to soup to bread to couscous to smoked salmon to black forest cake to tuna salad to BLTs to.... you name it. Wonderful food. Some of the dishes are just basic, hearty comfort-food; others are exotic and heavily spiced; others are spiced so delicately you can't even tell why you're reacting to it the way you are, you just know it's wonderful; others are sweet and smooth and hit that sugar craving perfectly. People who come to this banquet are welcome to just wander around the table and eat, or to bring their own favorite dish (i.e., write a story and put it on the "table" for others to enjoy).

I've always loved that description of fannish writing - there is room for all kinds of storytelling, and kinks, and characters, and story types.  There is room for me, who may not write exactly like XYZ BNF because I am not XYZ BNF.  But I don't have to be her to write wonderfully.  I don't have to sound like anyone else in the world except like the best version of myself that I can possibly manage.  This is true for fanfic, and I believe it is also true for original fic.  This is a heartening belief.
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"Creativity comes from trust.  Trust your instincts.  And never hope more than you work."
~Rita Mae Brown



Wings photo tumblr_my7sms2UJX1t3mdruo1_500_zps021cfb3d.jpg







I found this quote in a magazine with a lovely picture of a girl wearing wings.  In the process of finding a similar picture to use that I liked, I found this and thought it was appropriate.  Pic came from wonderwall-daisies at this post.
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This may become a recurring thing with me.

[personal profile] thefourthvine  recently put up a meta post that struck a chord with me.  She is endlessly entertaining and smart and on-point about lots of things, but this post was about writing - it was also a rant about people being assholes on the internet, because people suck, so I'm pulling out the positive bits in case you want to skip the rant:

Sturgeon's law is right, but it misses the point. Ninety percent of everything has to be shit. That's how you get the 10% that's good.

Your favorite writers, fan fiction, published fiction, published fan fiction, whatever -- they didn't start out writing that way. There was a time when they wrote unspeakably awful crap. Writing unspeakably awful crap is how you learn to write only moderately awful crap, and then eventually maybe decent stuff, and then, if you're lucky, actually good things. There are not two classes of people, those who are good writers and those who are bad writers, so that all you have to do to have only great stuff is scare away all the bad writers. There are people who used to write bad stuff, and there are people who are currently writing bad stuff, and there's a lot of crossover between the two. Some of the second category will one day be the first category. (Also, tomorrow some of the first category will move back to the second. No one hits it out of ballpark every time.) If you want to read new good stuff tomorrow, encourage the people writing bad stuff today. (And also maybe help them get betas. Betas are great.)

And, no, those people don't have to hide their work away until it gets better. They can share it with anyone who wants to read it. If they want to post it, they should. Wanting to is reason enough. (Although if you want another reason -- posting is how community happens. Which is how things like betas happen. People who share their work get better faster.)

Underlined emphasis mine because I need to remember both of those points.  And that post linked to Not your usual "morality in art" debate by [personal profile] staranise :

It's just a fact of life that teaching or trying to find art that satisfies you is going to be full of setbacks and frustration, so if you want to do those things, you have to deal with it.

And for artists and students and everyone else the truth is, You have no moral obligation to please everyone. You do not have to make everyone like you to be a good person. You are allowed to meet your own needs at the cost of meeting someone else's.


Which is another thing I need to remember: while I feel the need to honor my craft by doing the best work I can, I also write for me.  The body of work I put out is my experience.  It reflects the characters and stories that interest me at the time, my thought processes at the time, and sometimes the things that I wrestle with mentally and emotionally that I put into fanfic because fic is yet another outlet for understanding myself.  While I do seek positive feedback (otherwise I'd never publish it), I need to remember that creating the work for myself in the first place is reason enough to exist, and let it be reward enough to me.  In the words of Joss Whedon:

I  write to give myself strength.   I  write to be the characters that I  am not.   I write to explore all the things I'm afraid of.

pslasher: (Default)
Here is something that I find inspirational when I have doubts about my ability to write anything worth reading.  Also, when I get the "meh, I just don't feel like fighting with it today" ambivalence.  I must do it anyway, and do a lot of it, if I expect to get anywhere at all.  I thought I might share it in case it inspires anyone else.



Ira Glass on Storytelling from David Shiyang Liu on Vimeo.

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