sistermagpie: Moon magic (Moon)
( Nov. 27th, 2012 02:50 pm)
Hey! So the amazing [personal profile] pts had an idea a while back. The idea was:

It occurred to us one bourbon-seasoned afternoon in March that Kissing and Adventure make really excellent partners—you know, in stories. And we thought to ourselves how grand it would be to assemble an anthology of fiction dedicated to making that case.


And lo, this idea became a reality--in e-book form! Seven tales of ships (as in vessels), and ships (as in kissing), all for under $3.00.

You can check out more details right here. There's story excerpts and links to get a copy of your own in multiple formats. So much kissing in a convenient format and a really low price!

Also, I'm in it. That is, I wrote one of the stories. As did other terrific people like [profile] aliwildgoose and [personal profile] jlh. I'm pretty excited about that part, actually. So I'm shamelessly plugging it. Proudly plugging it, in fact.

The Ships We Sail. Get your copy today! If you would like! No pressure!
sistermagpie: Classic magpie (Neville Magpie.)
( Jan. 21st, 2012 04:54 pm)
I've been reading a lot (or at least a few) fantasy books lately for girls and now I have feelings about Girls Who Are Special. I’m not dismissing them all with a "Mary Sue" label because they're not always written badly or as overly perfect. But there is a related wish fulfillment idea there. But I just never really related to that particular wish-fulfillment fantasy. I think, in fact, that I'm probably sometimes more forgiving about this with male characters, perhaps because I relate to them a little differently. There's a slight remove that isn't there with a female character. But regardless of the gender, I've always preferred non-Chosen Ones. )
sistermagpie: WWSMD? (Nun)
( Jan. 13th, 2012 11:59 am)
So everybody is doing this meme, and I got mine from [personal profile] donnaimmaculata:

Pick up the nearest book to you. Turn to page 45. The first sentence describes your sex life in 2012.

My nearest books are all on my Nook. I was reading two this morning. Page 45 for one is unfortunately an endnote. Surely that doesn't count? But if it did the one included phrase would be: "personal communication."

Not bad, I guess. Though if I skipped the endnotes and went to the beginning of the next chapter the first sentence would be: "Is a pen a metaphorical penis?" which offers a lot of possibilities, especially on livejournal!

Page 45 on the other book starts with: "Oui, oui, disait Grand en descendant les escaliers derriere le docteur."

The opening "Yes, yes" could bode well. Unfortunately the guy saying it is following another man down a flight of stairs, so I can't help but feeling like they're leaving me in my room while the two of them go off together. Coupled with the metaphorical penis line it's beginning to seem like my entire sex life for 2012 will be slashfic.

Just for one more I'll grab the book I finished yesterday. They're all right next to each other on the screen after all! That would be: "But it won't work if you don't believe it will, you know that."

Now that's intriguing. Intriguing and probably good advice.

Though not so much as the last possible sentence, coming from the book I finished right before that one: "His grin and his confident manner cowed everybody at the table but me and they stopped talking and made a to-do about passing him things, like he was somebody."

So I might keep a lookout for that guy!

Bonus meme: Can anybody guess any of the books?
Tags:
At some point I need to do a post round up of the three plays I saw in something like a week and a half—and all really good!

Before I get to that, I had one of those things this week when a couple of things seemed to happen that commented on something I was reading and thinking myself. And it's very much related to fandom things.

I'll start with last week's Community, which as you've probably heard (hopefully not entirely from Community fans that annoy you!) is being put on hiatus. There were a bunch of comments about last week's episode, in which the Dean tried to make a commercial for Greendale college, with Abed also making a documentary about the process because, as Abed and Luis Guzman both agree Hearts of Darkness (the documentary on the making of Apocalypse Now) is much better than Apocalypse Now. The ep has naturally spawned really interesting meta about the process of having stories and how the stories create reality, because they are a way for people to explain their experience of something via emotion.

I was particularly eager to think about that because of a book I've been reading, Sybil Exposed by Debbie Nathan. Perhaps you already know Sybil, because she was a huge cultural phenomenon in the 1970s. She was the subject of the "nonfiction novel" Sybil by Flora Schreiber, which told the story of Sybil Dorsett, a woman with 16 personalities who was cured via therapy with her brilliant, caring psychiatrist, Cornelia "Connie" Wilbur. The book was huge and later was made into an awesome TV movie with Joanne Woodward (who once herself starred as multiple personality Eve in The Three Faces of Eve) and Sally Field, who until then was known for her goofy sitcoms.

I hadn't realized, since when I read/saw Sybil in high school it was years after either came out, was that Sybil essentially created the modern understanding of multiple personality/dissociative identity disorder, and the idea of repressed memories brought out through therapy. That, of course, eventually peaked in the 90s with thousands of people diagnosed with the disorder (before Sybil it wasn't even in the DSM) without half the symptoms described in the book, and many therapists sued when the memories they recovered turned out to be completely false. Memory, it turns out, doesn't work like a Pensieve. )

I don't if this is interesting at all if you haven't heard of Sybil, but I do recommend the classic TV movie. Apparently it was remade with Jessica Lange at some point and I didn't even know, but it's just not the same if it's not the classic tale of multiple personalities and endlessly weird, torturous child abuse.

The pajamas in this clip got them sued on homophobic grounds!
At some point I need to do a post round up of the three plays I saw in something like a week and a half—and all really good!

Before I get to that, I had one of those things this week when a couple of things seemed to happen that commented on something I was reading and thinking myself. And it's very much related to fandom things.

I'll start with last week's Community, which as you've probably heard (hopefully not entirely from Community fans that annoy you!) is being put on hiatus. There were a bunch of comments about last week's episode, in which the Dean tried to make a commercial for Greendale college, with Abed also making a documentary about the process because, as Abed and Luis Guzman both agree Hearts of Darkness (the documentary on the making of Apocalypse Now) is much better than Apocalypse Now. The ep has naturally spawned really interesting meta about the process of having stories and how the stories create reality, because they are a way for people to explain their experience of something via emotion.

I was particularly eager to think about that because of a book I've been reading, Sybil Exposed by Debbie Nathan. Perhaps you already know Sybil, because she was a huge cultural phenomenon in the 1970s. She was the subject of the "nonfiction novel" Sybil by Flora Schreiber, which told the story of Sybil Dorsett, a woman with 16 personalities who was cured via therapy with her brilliant, caring psychiatrist, Cornelia "Connie" Wilbur. The book was huge and later was made into an awesome TV movie with Joanne Woodward (who once herself starred as multiple personality Eve in The Three Faces of Eve) and Sally Field, who until then was known for her goofy sitcoms.

I hadn't realized, since when I read/saw Sybil in high school it was years after either came out, was that Sybil essentially created the modern understanding of multiple personality/dissociative identity disorder, and the idea of repressed memories brought out through therapy. That, of course, eventually peaked in the 90s with thousands of people diagnosed with the disorder (before Sybil it wasn't even in the DSM) without half the symptoms described in the book, and many therapists sued when the memories they recovered turned out to be completely false. Memory, it turns out, doesn't work like a Pensieve. )

I don't if this is interesting at all if you haven't heard of Sybil, but I do recommend the classic TV movie. Apparently it was remade with Jessica Lange at some point and I didn't even know, but it's just not the same if it's not the classic tale of multiple personalities and endlessly weird, torturous child abuse.

The pajamas in this clip got them sued on homophobic grounds!
sistermagpie: Classic magpie (At home)
( Aug. 23rd, 2011 03:17 pm)
Thought it was a poltergeist.

My sister lives in Richmond, VA. Lucky she and her two youngest kids are apparently in NYC today on the Circle Line. Who knew?

Hope everybody in the DC area is okay!

p.s. I swear I had ideas for posts during the time lj was down but now I forgot them. I have only one more book to read in ASOIAF and then maybe I can talk about them. I think somebody once asked me what I thought of Cersei...
sistermagpie: Classic magpie (Default)
( Aug. 23rd, 2011 03:17 pm)
Thought it was a poltergeist.

My sister lives in Richmond, VA. Lucky she and her two youngest kids are apparently in NYC today on the Circle Line. Who knew?

Hope everybody in the DC area is okay!

p.s. I swear I had ideas for posts during the time lj was down but now I forgot them. I have only one more book to read in ASOIAF and then maybe I can talk about them. I think somebody once asked me what I thought of Cersei...
Today I had one of those thoughts that's kind of stating the obvious so there's little need to write it down, but it was in response to many people implying it wasn't true so I'm writing it down. It has to do with female characters. Or rather, the perfect female character. )
Today I had one of those thoughts that's kind of stating the obvious so there's little need to write it down, but it was in response to many people implying it wasn't true so I'm writing it down. It has to do with female characters. Or rather, the perfect female character. )
I was talking today about a thing on Pop Culture Happy Hour last week where there was this theory put forth that in order to have cool kids, you ought to not be cool parents. The idea being that cool parents produce dull kids and vice versa, since kids rebel. This is echoed in a Wired piece this week about geeks needing a wider, blander culture to react against or else you don't get creativity.

And I thought a lot of the appeal of these ideas is that it gives you a formula for creativity, a way of ensuring you can be cool, when in fact creativity and talent is often innate, unearned and unfair. Which is not to say that you either get sprinkled with the creativity dust at birth and you’re a prodigy and if you aren't you should just shut up and there's no hope for you and hard work means nothing--could not disagree with that more. I just don't think it's wholly created by your environment, doesn’t always fit in with your personality, at least not in a way that makes it easy. So I started thinking about my own tastes in things and whether I got them from my parents. )

Anyone else have relevant experiences in this area?
I was talking today about a thing on Pop Culture Happy Hour last week where there was this theory put forth that in order to have cool kids, you ought to not be cool parents. The idea being that cool parents produce dull kids and vice versa, since kids rebel. This is echoed in a Wired piece this week about geeks needing a wider, blander culture to react against or else you don't get creativity.

And I thought a lot of the appeal of these ideas is that it gives you a formula for creativity, a way of ensuring you can be cool, when in fact creativity and talent is often innate, unearned and unfair. Which is not to say that you either get sprinkled with the creativity dust at birth and you’re a prodigy and if you aren't you should just shut up and there's no hope for you and hard work means nothing--could not disagree with that more. I just don't think it's wholly created by your environment, doesn’t always fit in with your personality, at least not in a way that makes it easy. So I started thinking about my own tastes in things and whether I got them from my parents. )

Anyone else have relevant experiences in this area?
I read a post today that got me thinking about the subject...here [livejournal.com profile] jarodrossell refers to a conversation he was having about archetypes. Specifically, characters that can redefine archetypes. The context of the original conversation is regarding African American nerd characters, of whom there aren't that many. The one everyone usually points to is Urkel, and he was on TV in the 90s. [livejournal.com profile] jarodrussell points out Alec Hardison from Leverage as an example, but since Hardison is a supporting character and a member of an ensemble, he doesn't have the power to redefine an archetype like a lead. Which got me thinking about supporting characters in general and how they often outshine the lead--which should not be taken as an argument for white leads.... )
I read a post today that got me thinking about the subject...here [profile] jarodrossell refers to a conversation he was having about archetypes. Specifically, characters that can redefine archetypes. The context of the original conversation is regarding African American nerd characters, of whom there aren't that many. The one everyone usually points to is Urkel, and he was on TV in the 90s. [personal profile] jarodrussell points out Alec Hardison from Leverage as an example, but since Hardison is a supporting character and a member of an ensemble, he doesn't have the power to redefine an archetype like a lead. Which got me thinking about supporting characters in general and how they often outshine the lead--which should not be taken as an argument for white leads.... )
I just read this little excerpt froma review of The Demon's Covenent by Sarah Rees Brennan, the sequel to The Demon's Lexicon and it reminded me of something I wanted to say about it. Spoilers within--be warned! )
Tags:
I just read this little excerpt froma review of The Demon's Covenent by Sarah Rees Brennan, the sequel to The Demon's Lexicon and it reminded me of something I wanted to say about it. Spoilers within--be warned! )
Tags:
sistermagpie: Classic magpie (Might as well be in Chinese)
( Jun. 11th, 2010 07:53 pm)
I have felt so buried lately! We're doing a special thing at work that leads to twice as much work as usual, plus I just moved, which always seems to include more things to do than you expect. Just last night I finally dropped off my old cable boxes at Time Warner (after 3 attempts at appointments to get it hooked up, one of which was just about learning that they couldn't), but got caught in a freak rainshower that lasted from the time I left the cab to the moment I arrived three at the office drenched, with the bag I had the cable box and modem in in pieces. Blech. You know it's bad when the guy at the counter just laughs at you.

Anyway, now I'm finally (hopefully) settled. And I have had a chance to read at least one excellent book that I have wanted to say something about. Zuko's Story! The Last Airbender Prequel--spoilers for ATLA, of course, even though it's a prequel )
sistermagpie: Might as well be in Chinese (Chinese)
( Jun. 11th, 2010 07:53 pm)
I have felt so buried lately! We're doing a special thing at work that leads to twice as much work as usual, plus I just moved, which always seems to include more things to do than you expect. Just last night I finally dropped off my old cable boxes at Time Warner (after 3 attempts at appointments to get it hooked up, one of which was just about learning that they couldn't), but got caught in a freak rainshower that lasted from the time I left the cab to the moment I arrived three at the office drenched, with the bag I had the cable box and modem in in pieces. Blech. You know it's bad when the guy at the counter just laughs at you.

Anyway, now I'm finally (hopefully) settled. And I have had a chance to read at least one excellent book that I have wanted to say something about. Zuko's Story! The Last Airbender Prequel--spoilers for ATLA, of course, even though it's a prequel )
sistermagpie: Sigh. (Monet)
( May. 5th, 2010 09:23 pm)
I've been having a lot of trouble logging into LJ. Like, it didn't let me all day at work. Hopefully it will get fixed soon!

Anyway, this post...In which I make sad face about Bat comics. :-(

I was reading Red Robin #12 today and it was great. I’ve loved this comic from the beginning and this arc did everything it set out to do. But even though this story ended in the perfect way, with stuff that I should have absolutely loved, I wound up just feeling sad. The reason? I’m jealous. Spoilers for Red Robin within. )
sistermagpie: Classic magpie (100% Ravenclaw)
( May. 3rd, 2010 11:49 pm)
Just read a great post by [livejournal.com profile] mrs_laugh_track on a subject that I think doesn't get covered enough. In a nutshell:

"There is a LOT of people who are GOOD at things on television right now. People who are naturals. Who are the best something to ever something. And in order to emphasize that we don't really get presented with them working really hard to get there. And to me personally that can lead to a lot of genericness. Because by removing the hard work you are removing the part of them as a person that is heavily influenced by whatever it is that they do. So you end up with these very interchangeable characters having very interchangeable banter. And the banter is interchangeable because it's barely about their jobs because the character isn't ABOUT the job."

I have to say, I've felt that same frustration. I love characters that are what they do, whose personality has developed around their profession. I feel like this also connects to the competency porn idea. In case you've never heard that, that was a term I think made up by the Leverage writers who said that they originally worried that the audience would be bored by too much exposition in an ep, but then discovered that the audience loved scenes where people who were damn good at they do discussed their plans. I think what turns something from generic talented people banter to competency porn is making us believe that the characters love what they do, find it fascinating to actually do it in ways they can only do because of years of study and discipline.

Read the actual post here

What I love, too, is that she zeroes in on this being about characters caring about something and not just characters being too talented.
I was having a conversation today about something completely unrelated, and it made me think about first time stories or new relationships vs. old relationships with a lot of baggage. Thinking about it...warning: these thoughts go all over the place and wind up somewhere I did not even expect. )
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