[sticky post] On the nature of friends and how you're probably not one of mine

This is mostly a friends locked journal, although with the waning interest in LiveJournal, I don't have that many active friends here, and some of what I write is made public. I don't invite comments from people who are not known to me but that's the risk I take when posting publicly. If you do comment, know that I might delete your comment, maybe I'll respond to it, or I might leave it there but ignore it completely. It's the risk you take.

Writing and the balance of originality to well-used 'tropes

I, of course, am not an expert in this. Let's be honest from the outset though, there are very few, if any, original ideas left in writing. There are simply original takes on things that have already happened at other people's pens.

Context: I'm trying to write a story for "an upcoming fandom exchange" that walks a fine line between original fiction and inspired by the "core material" while not being a word for word copy, an uses 'tropes sparringly but well.

Fantasy: I want it to be fun, quirky, sassy. I want it to be memorable.

Reality: At this point, I'm going to hope for the best. I'm not feeling my story at all, it's the second major attempt at writing something for this prompt, the first attempt didn't feel right even as I was writing it-- this one feels moderately better but meh overall. It feels a little violent, vulgar, and ugly.

Review of Avengers: Age of Ultron - or you've been Jossed!

So, yanow, warning for like, spoilers and stuff.

This movie felt like such a "Joss" movie, if you catch my drift. In other words, yucky! First minute in, my sister and I were saying how glad we were to have gone to the 2D viewing because, wow, busy screen full of lots of action and things happening, so many things, I had trouble following it all.

Stream of consciousness style, here we go.

Read at your own riskCollapse )

More comprehensive thoughts when you've been to the movie.


Short and sweet this week.

All is meh in the world. I have signed up for two exchanges and my fandom requests are meeting with rejection, disdain even. I shall be dropping out of one very shortly, and risk dropping the other if things don't improve. I will not adjust my settings to make life easier for other people.

Work continues to be ugh.

My sister was surprisingly PMS this week, OMG I wanted to just silence her fucking tone of voice and the things she was saying to me.

On an unrelated note, I was thinking today, do the successes of Lil' Bub and Grumpy Cat make it easier in this world for non-average moggies to be adopted and loved. Not simply for perceived fame for a funny looking cat, but simply because people are changing their preconceived notions of what cats mean to us and whether having a perfect pussy cat is important anymore. If you can afford the upkeep of a cat with health issues, is there any reason not to give one a home and the love it certainly deserves? Thoughts to be thunk on.

I'm still not quite there myself personally, maybe one day in the future I'll be emotionally resilient enough to adopt again.

Fic Mountain, the act of taking risks and the nature of rewards

Another rant in my semi-regular programme of rants lately. It's very cathartic to vent on things that annoy you.

So I temporarily have a sign up for Night on Fic Mountain, that might and probably will change before the end of sign ups because all of my requests have a big fat zero against them and I don't want to go to a pinch hit list.

I've signed up to a few of these things now and pretty much each time I end up with a pinch hitter, the reason I know that it's a pinch hitter is because it could've been written from wikipedia entries, there is none of the little clues and hints that you're reading something that someone knew more than the basics, there is no soul.

My feeling is, as writers, because fanfiction writers will never not be real writers, we need to challenge ourselves just as much as our original fic comrades. Don't always take the easy fandom, you might not have anything new and fresh to offer it. Sometimes you'll find it's more gratifying to take on something more risky and write something that challenges you, forces you to write from unfamiliar character povs, or time periods, or genders, or comfort levels, the list could go on.

You won't get the enormous number of comments but surely that's not why you're doing this?

The first yuletide I participated in was the only time I didn't get what I consider a pinch hit story. What I read was from someone with more than a passing knowledge of the source material, they knew how the characters acted, how they moved and communicated with each other, something only gleamed from reading the book series my request came from.

When I wrote The Feline Specialist, I had watched Aliens a million times (or surely a few dozen), I know the source material, I loved Alien, I loved Jonesy and Ripley, I loved all of the characters in that particular movie except the one you're not supposed to love but even then, I loved his programmed villainy. It was a risk writing from the cat's pov but it paid off.

For Learning to Drive, I'd watched the film about three times over the last few years. I loved the source material, I loved the driver and I loved Betty, I yearned to know more about him and where he came from, how he met her, how things became the fucked up normal that things were in that film. It was risky to write it only having watched it three times but my ideas and the prompts were for things that had occured prior to the film so I was going to be worldbuilding a little, it was worth the risk. Maybe it paid off, maybe it didn't, I can't read into it to much.

There have been a few times where I was matched on my weakest offer and my attempts received mixed reviews, that's okay, I wasn't an expert and if anyone was an expert in that fandom they hadn't stepped up to write something better. I made an attempt, it was in one instance rejected, and one embraced and loved.

I weighed it up each time, take the risk and write in a fandom that I had only a passing familiarity to, or don't. What could I gain? What would I lose?

This NoFM I have signed up to write five passingly familiar fandoms, partially by choice, partially to push my personal writing envelope. It's a terrifying feeling. I am not a popular writer, I don't have a following, I don't have a bunch of people leaping out of the shadows to beta for me no matter what fandom I write in. I think sometimes that the requestors don't even know what to make of my efforts on their behalf but are almost all unfailingly polite to me, sometimes they rave, sometimes there are crickets for days.

I think what I'm trying to say is that if we all played it safe in these exchanges, no one in the truly rare fandoms would ever get a new story. If we all played it safe, we wouldn't find new fandoms to love and people to share them with. If we all played it safe and only wrote the new popular fandoms that have squeaked into these exchanges because they are new and haven't build up a firm and numerous following yet. We, doesn't that go against the concept of rewarding fans of rare fandoms?

It's fine if you have a solid idea for one of these "squeaked in" fandoms, but isn't it better to post it outside of the exchange and take on something truly rare in the spirit of the exchange?

In this years Night on Fic Mountain, it appears Agent Carter is the favourite, followed not closely by Forever (TV) and Jupiter Ascending. I ask you, are they rare? Truly rare?

My personal belief is that writers sign up hoping to get an Agent Carter and get something else entirely, something a little tougher than they expected, and how many default because it's too hard? Too many I think from watching how these things unfold after posting date.

And this is where I have an issue with pinch hits and why exchanges like Beyond Panels who have a history of posting the pinch hits publicly where the requestor can see that not a single writer wanted their requests-- any of them; well, it enrages me.There is something to be said for maintaining the illusion of dignity for the requestor-- no one wants to be rejected, even more not publicly rejected, no one wants to know they're holding up the entire exchange because their fandoms were "too hard" to write in. A smart moderator wouldn't have posted that publicly, that's why you have the pinch hitter's emails right? To do it privately? So fucking do it privately. The requestor knows because no gift has appears in their AO3, do you have to say it outloud for the whole world to know as well. Privacy, look it up.

So in closing this vent up tight, if I don't have a taker for any of my rare fandoms by close to sign ups finishing, I will drop out of writing in my five rare fandoms and not think twice on it. For my risk, I want a reward, and I want one from someone who actually gave a shit, didn't phone it in or more accurately, researched it in without feeling a thing for the fandom or the requestor. I don't want a shitty pinch hit that has no soul, I don't want to read something that doesn't sing to me about how much the writer loved writing it.

Memes collide, the world goes on

Don't get me wrong, I love a good meme, but the dress one, be it blue/black or white/gold, was just stupid! The llama one was precious-- DON'T ARGUE! It was so precious. They're coming thick and fast though, these memes, and if you don't get out of the way you might get hit in the head by a weasel riding a woodpecker.

To the asshole who deleted my heartfelt apology reply to your, frankly speaking, shit story

A history:

  • Accidentally join and fail to delete my application to gift exchange during a time of stress and depression.

  • Attempt to write story and fail.

  • Attempt to write another story and fail again.

  • Default at great personal cost to my emotional state.

  • Don't feel worthy of receiving a gift story because I failed and defaulted so kudo gift story even though I'm not in the right headspace to reply or even read it.

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NOTE: Comments to this entry are disabled for a reason, I don't want some self-appointed fanfic justice defender coming by and stinking up my LJ.

It's called getting old for a reason AKA get the fuck off my lawn fandom brats of the world

This doesn't feel like a tumblr thing so I'm posting here.

Warning: Offensive language and a none too pleasant look into my thoughts right now and lots of waffling.

The last six months to three years, I've felt old, like literally I don't have time for anybody's shit anymore either online or in real life. Before that, when people felt more than a bare tolerance for me, I had friends. I can't seem to connect anymore, tumblr is a problem because it's rife with that scroll and click 'like' mentality. The younger tumblr members seem to be in such a rush to get 'somewhere', who knows where that somewhere is, but I'm more a kind of wait and see where things go before I feel anything kind of person now.

For the first time in fifteen years, I'm giving up comics again, in the physical paper sense anyway, and Marvel is out of the picture because I'm seeing things get recycled as new and exciting and I'm old enough to know it's not and I've seen it before, and the writing is just so uninspired and weak and I bet if Marvel could clone Bendis so he could write every title then they would.

Part of me thinks that I need to give away fandom as well because I'm so bitter and twisted.

I stopped writing fanfic two years ago except when I dust off the old braincells each holiday season and hope I can pull a Yuletide out of my butt, so far so good. I stopped drawing fanart because what's the point?

Shit, I realised I've been writing New Warriors fanfiction for twenty years through good times and bad in that fictional suckhole that is the Marvel Universe. I read almost every fanfic story in that fandom that was written on the internet (except that shitty Russian porn one, the one before the other shitty Russian porn fics on AO3 were a gleam in their writer's eye). Haven't I earned a time to rest and sit back on my laurels? Where are my damn laurels?

There's this whole new generation of readers and none of those fuckers will write anything/contribute more than porn. That old adage that teenagers/new adults all have sex on the brain might be true if their shitty 'porn centric' fanfiction is anything to go by. That's the most I've written the word porn in a long time, lol.

And another thing, how is a fandom inspired network improved by selfies, reblogs of selfies, skyping, texting, and every other thing that has no-thing to do with the actual fandom? I'm looking at you New Warriors Network.

Don't even get me started on AO3 which is just about the most elitist place around (sorry Barb), only defend it if you haven't had dozens of comments and kudos from your besties on a fic in a popular fandom.

BTW is anyone else on Goodreads? That place is a nest of vipers wielding poorly formed reviews like those foam hands pointing ever so loudly at what they think is bad, by all means have an opinion but don't be a dick about it.

I'm waffling, what am I trying to say?

I barely spend time on LJ because hello, it's LJ and this place sucks ass. I ghost at DW because the tumbleweeds might rise up and take over soon. I slipped quietly out the back door of several forums because male shouting and chest thumping. My tumblr has become a never-ending cycle of reblogging cats, cats, more cats, gifs of cats, maybe a turtle or a shark, a piece of yummy food because PMS, oooo Jurassic World something, then a whole bunch more cats.

I think it's safe to say I'm phoning this whole online presence thing in.

Where are the connections and friendships? How sad is it that I feel lucky if people even reply to my comments or my messages? Do they not reply because tumblr is a terrible platform to form friendships on and that Yahoo is fucking with it constantly, or is it because people don't want to reply to comments, or maybe it's just my comments because who the fuck am I, and then there is the SJW faction, the help my dying pet posts, kickstarters, reblog if you think this do this don't do this want to be like this or because I can't be fucked doing my homework properly and it's due tomorrow?

Do your own fucking homework and do it properly you entitled little brat, and no I won't reblog your post because I don't fucking feel like it and I've been out of highschool for long enough to know I don't need you preaching your shitty judgmental gospel at me from your nappy pants.

In other words, it's all become too much.

When did being a decent person have to be something you talked about ad infinitum online? Why not just try being a good person quietly and normally like it wasn't a big deal to be decent to everyone else in the world and not some special thing you should get a fucking medal for. How does it hurt you to be kind?

Hmmm, I guess tumblr has worn thin on me. Expect a lot more cat reblogs in the near future.


So anyway, these are my thoughts this fine warm February evening (and no I'm not currently PMSing). I'm not asking for feedback or a discussion but if you feel inspired to write something feel free just be respectful of the fact that this is my safe place, my blog, my retreat, and you don't have the right to shit all over it because you strongly disagree about any of what I have written.

In the immortal words of Roger Murtaugh, "I'm too old for this shit!"