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reinforce my clarity
a thousand burning penguins jumping into a sea of crisps
15th-Aug-2015 01:45 pm - what the hell?
Has someone managed to spam every LJ community at once? There are 17 posts on my friends page that seem to be identical texts of either (a) Russian followed by maths, (b) Russian muddled with English followed by maths or (c) Russian muddled with English followed by a picture of textbooks, all from various comms I'm watching.

I am confused and perturbed.
17th-Jul-2015 08:33 pm - oh, those heavenly voices
Some kind soul has posted a playlist of 48 prose and poetry recordings by British actors - mostly Tom Hiddlestone, Benedict Cumberbatch, Richard Armitage and David Tennant but a few other voices snuck in there too. It is very soothing (mostly, there are some that are less so just because of the text in question) so I thought I would pass on the link in case anyone else needed some aural therapy!

(There is also a second set linked at the bottom of the same suspects reading children's bedtime stories! Which are probably even more soothing.)
25th-May-2015 08:39 pm - Truth, Justice, Freedom
Reasonably Priced Love and a Hard-Boiled Egg.

It's the Glorious 25th of May.

(Wrong kind of blossom, I know, but I wasn't there so can't wear the lilac...)

GNU Terry Practchett
Okay, I'm well late to the party but goddamn that was fun. Think I may have to investigate this series further... I may be some time.
21st-Mar-2015 06:56 pm - feeling accomplished today
I've only actually added 1500 words to the WIP, which is a small scene, but what I have also done is finally sorted out (I think) what needs to happen next to get me to the next bit I have planned which is where I have been floundering a bit for the last week or so. Hoorah!

I kept going around in circles over what scene should come next because I only had the Doylist reason of "I need to work towards here" and the Watsonian side of it actually making sense in the fic wasn't quite coming together until today when I had a minor characterisation revelation. Helped I think by rereading a writing meme I did ages ago, bizarrely enough, while I was trying to find something else on this journal - an answer to one of the questions percolated away for a while until my brain went "actually, a bit of a twist on that, combined with that half an idea I already had, and a smidgen of rewriting a previous bit..." *ping!* and I'm back in business.

Now I have to just get the bloody words out along the tracks... as always, easier said than done!
12th-Mar-2015 07:17 pm - RIP PTerry
Seriously upset about this news.

"What have I always believed? That on the whole,and by and large, if a man lived properly, not accroding to what any priests said, but according to what seemed decent and honest inside, then it would, at the end, more or less, turn out all right."

Let's hope.

GNU Terry Pratchett.
Those bits of WIP I posted have now decided to combine into one larger WIP that has topped 20000 words with ease (that's what I've typed out, there is more in long hand from the aforementioned train journeys) and is continuing merrily into a big thing. With (dear god) a scene I've just finished that may actually qualify as foot kink.

Hobbit fandom, what are you doing to me? I'd feel better about it if I had an end goal in mind, but at the moment it is just getting longer... with even more sex scenes...

I blame Richard Armitage. Book-Thorin wasn't the least bit attractive. *sulks*
14th-Feb-2015 02:32 pm - public transport dilemma
The good thing about commuting again by public transport is that train journeys have always been conducive to my thinking of fic ideas, and I now have about 1.5 hours every weekday for that.

The bad thing is that when I'm halfway through scribbling down that idea for a sex scene and someone plonks into the seat next to me it is a little off-putting!

Dear Miss Manners: when writing porn between two fictional (and non-human) characters on a train, is it acceptable to continue to do so when joined in my seating by a stranger on the grounds that my hand-writing is not very legible, or should I discontinue to save us both potential embarrassment and risk forgetting my idea?
9th-Feb-2015 06:21 pm - I am seriously freaking out
eilean donan
Had a PC hard drive failure so it got replaced under warranty today. So obviously I backed up my Firefox bookmarks on a portable drive yesterday via their "backup and restore" option.

Now Firefox says it is unable to process the backup file and restore them from my portable. I don't have the faulty drive any more as the Dell tech took it away.

I think I just lost every single webpage I've bookmarked in the last 15 years and I can't stop crying.

ETA: Panic over. After much swearing and digging around trying to find old profiles and support requests, it is sorted. Can I just say: PHEW.

And add a PSA: back up your bookmarks 3 different ways! They like to terrorise you!
25th-Jan-2015 08:31 pm - Fic meme!
When you see this, share 3 random lines from 3 WIPs.

Or why not share a paragraph or two?

And for once, I actually have some WIPs! I get to play! (Okay, I only have 2 WIPs, but still.)

Both are Hobbit snippets, both in post-BotFA fixit AUs.

1)First up is the flirty banter one, which to be honest may not go anywhere, but I kind of like it:

“I do miss Bag End,” Bilbo continued, “I miss my armchair, and my garden, and my books. But when I think about returning, it becomes clear that Bag End is lacking a vital ingredient for being my home now,” and as he went on he saw the resigned look in Thorin’s eyes turn almost hopeful, though he was clearly making an effort to keep his face still. The hope became a little clearer when Bilbo moved forward again so that his toes were touching Thorin’s boots and tipped his head up and Bilbo smiled to see it, and more when Thorin’s eyes instantly dropped to his mouth.

“And what vital ingredient would that be?” Thorin asked, curling down slightly towards Bilbo, and Bilbo gave him another fond smile before he made an exaggerated show of looking around them and leaning in further as though he was about to impart a deep secret.

“It has no dwarves. Not a single one!” Bilbo said in tones of fake horror and had his fooling rewarded with a real smile from Thorin.

2)And second is the angstier one where Thorin is a bit of a mess, and the premise of which actually came from a surprisingly coherent dream:

“But Balin said you had asked him what our beads meant,” Thorin said almost helplessly and his shoulders were bunching up again while Bilbo’s mind went racing back over every time he had tried to find out more about dwarven culture during the quest and his surmise was looking more likely because the beads, the beads… Personal, Balin had said, given to those in their hearts, and Bilbo had thought that meant family because Balin had pointed out to him the ones he had given Dwalin and the ones Fíli and Kíli wore for their uncle, and for the love of little green apples, he was an idiot.

“Did… did you just propose to me using hair beads?” he got out faintly, heart pounding with possibility and knowledge, and for all the time he had spent waiting and wondering how Thorin felt, Bilbo had still somehow missed Thorin handing his heart over on a platter, and oh how Bilbo had managed to hurt him with that blindness.
I need a hug
Finally got around to seeing The Battle of the Five Armies today, so film-specific spoilers under the cut:Collapse )

And now I'm going to go reread Lost to Life by hitagashi, which has Thorin "No sense of direction" Oakenshield taking a wrong turn in the afterlife to awesome results and is the perfect antidote to too many line of Durin feels...
2nd-Jan-2015 07:38 pm - Yuletide insta!rec
Unseen Academicals is my favourite Discworld book since Night Watch and pretty high up on the list of favourite ever, mostly because of Nutt and Glenda Sugarbean. And this fic, Interlude With Some Vampires by binz and shiplizard is not only a fantastic coda to the book but pitch-perfect both in the general Discworld tone (I laughed several times) and in characterisation of them both. Fabulous stuff.

(Also: HAPPY 2015! Hope everyone had a good festive period.)
6th-Nov-2014 10:51 am - Battle of Five Armies
I need a hug
There's a new trailer out soon apparently, but I've seen a few posters, including this one of Thorin, Fili and Kili apparently battling a troll. And it looks like very much like Thorin is wielding Glamdring, which is confusing me since that's Gandalf's sword and as far as I can remember from the book the only interaction they have now certainly isn't friendly enough to involve him lending Thorin a sword!

Also, I'm not sure fandom collectively has enough tissues to survive the end of this film.
25th-Oct-2014 03:07 pm - PSA: MCU extras!
An amazing person on tumblr has uploaded all of the extras from the Marvel films, which means that those of us who don't have BluRay or who are Region 2 for DVDs *glares at Disney* (yes, I'm still pissed about the extras being cut for Europe compared to US DVDs for Avengers) can actually have access!

Links are here. Get 'em while they're hot.
I updated the PC due to the death of XP, and in doing so switched over to Firefox but with my favourites imported. And today I figured it was time to go through the fannish ones and get rid of the websites that no longer exist, which depressingly turned out to be rather a lot (and I'm not done yet). For a bunch of homepages where I couldn't even remember why I had favourited them in the first place this wasn't too upsetting, but typically it appears that the sites where I did remember and would rather like to be able to reread some of the fic cannot be resurrected by Wayback either. Sigh.

This is probably why people used to save fics they really liked to their PCs, but I never bothered. Hindsight 20/20 and all.
30th-Aug-2014 09:24 pm - Doctor Who: Into the Dalek
Ooooookay, that was actually... kind of disturbing.

Just when you think the Daleks are all played outCollapse )

Ooh, the confidential thingy on iPlayer was also much less irritating this week, so that was good too! (They could still do with calming the narrator down another notch or two though.)
23rd-Aug-2014 09:58 pm - Attack eyebrows!
And Doctor numero... (uh, is he 12 or 13? Wait, are we on 14 now, with 10.5 and the War Doctor?) oh well, whichever one he is, he"s the Doctor, and he"s landedCollapse )
And thought I would share a couple of the joyous things I've found:

Catherine Tate interviewing David Tennant for the radio show Chain Reaction. Very funny and if the BBC wanted to give them their own show where they get to talk about anything they like that would be fine with me.

The Ballad of Russell and Julie, which is David Tennant, Catherine Tate and John Barrowman performing a musical number (which I think is an adaptation of a Victoria Wood song) in honour of Russell T Davies and Julie Gardner. Makes you wish there had been a musical episode of Doctor Who.

And what sent me on the kick in the first place - Digital Theatre has a performance of Much Ado About Nothing available (which as far as I know isn't available any other way). No link as you have to register and pay for a download (and get either their app or player) but it is glorious and well worth either the rental or the permanent access price. I think I have watched it at least 4 times since I found out about it and I have enjoyed the heck out of it every single time. DT is fantastic as Benedick and CT is very nearly as good as Beatrice, and the whole cast are excellent.

This most recent rewatch was inspired by watching the first half (ish) of the film version directed by Joss Whedon and finding it, hmm, disappointing is the word. It definitely suffers by comparison with the stage ones I have seen, both with DT and without, and by comparison to the Kenneth Branagh version (though I haven't seen that in a long time I do remember enjoying it a lot despite the Keanu Reeves factor). Not quite sure why this one didn't work for me, but it seemed very flat - I don't think I smiled until the slapstick of Benedick being fooled into thinking Beatrice loves him. Much as I like most of the cast members from other Whedon productions, I don't think they were making very much of the dialogue; it all seemed to get rattled off without much attention to giving it a flow so that lines stood out as important, or even as jokes (Clark Gregg does get an honourable mention for giving it a bit more life than some of the rest). Though I realise that is probably as much down to direction as to any particular actor and I am surprised that Whedon didn't manage to give things more oomph too. I didn't like Alexis Denisof as Benedick much, sad to say, and while I liked Amy Acker a bit more as Beatrice that may account for my not enjoying it that much since those two characters are the main draw of the play. I didn't even make it to Nathan Fillion's appearance.

So yeah, what I watched was all adequate, but not great which is why I had to go back and rewatch the Tennant/Tate production!
3rd-Jun-2014 08:43 pm - Meme!
Who is your Doctor?
Oh, start with the hard one first, why don't you... Uh... on reflection I think it may actually be Eleven. Much as I adore David Tennant, Eleven just edges it over Ten as the Doctor. He's just that bit more quirky and odd and flaily.

Who is your Doctor's companion?
And immediately followed by an easy one: Amy and Rory Pond, hands down. (Though Donna Noble is in second place.)

Who is your Batman?
I'm not actually a fan of Batman at all *shrugs* But I'll go for the 60s version with Adam West just for the cheesy joy.

Who is your Cat Woman
Halle Berry? Just kidding. Michelle Pfeiffer, I suppose.

Who is your Sherlock Holmes?
Benedict Cumberbatch. (I have fond memeories of watching Jeremy Brett many years ago though.)

Who is your fictional female federal agent?
Dana Scully. (Though if I'm allowed to pretend Hannibal didn't happen, it is totally Clarice Starling.)

Who is your Robin Hood?
Michael Praed. Oh, Robin of Sherwood with your Clannad music and 80s obsession with dry ice fog. I think if I watched you now I would find you very cheesy but damn did I love you when I was a child.

Who is your Maid Marian?
Kate Lonergan from Maid Marian and Her Merry Men! Awesome series, and I think I can just about still sing all of the theme tune.

Who is your Bond?
In descending order of preference: Daniel Craig, Sean Connery (only not tied for first because the rampant misogyny of the early films is a lot more obvious and annoying for me now), Timothy Dalton, Pierce Brosnan (I have not seen Die Another Day and do not intend to), Roger Moore, George Lazenby.

Who is your fictional female assassin?
Natasha Romanoff. (Duh.)
Okay, I had not gone back to watching Agents of SHIELD after its hiatus here in the UK because I hadn't found it that interesting. (FYI, Clark Gregg, on the off-chance you read this, my lack of interest had nothing to do with wanting Avengers cameos. That would be a horrible idea. But I would like the show to have an ensemble where half the characters aren't a personality-free zone, and to have a bit of life in its plots.)

But after seeing Captain America: The Winter Soldier, I wanted to see how the series dealt with the events of that film (see post below for spoilers and my reactions) plus I'd heard this half of the season was better so I gave AoS another shot. And maybe I just picked a bad episode to jump back in, but jeez louise people, could you not write plots that make your characters look like incompetent idiots?Collapse )
Finally got into the cinema to see Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and now I have Things that need to go down somewhere... don't expect any logical sequence though, there are no neat segues ahead just some headings.

Steve Rogers
First off, Steve Rogers is absolutely my favourite character in the MCU, though fairly unexpectedly on my part. Going in to Avengers Assemble, I'd only actually seen Iron Man and Thor (sacrilege, I know) and skimmed past articles about Captain America without much interest. Coming out of the Avengers film, I had a burning need to see The First Avenger as soon as possible, and immediately after that I had a one true character for the Marvel universe and I've spent the last few years basing my reading habits in that fandom entirely on how much Captain America was present. If Steve Rogers isn't fairly central to a fic, I'm not interested, but I will ship him with virtually anyone (long as it's consensual) because everything is better with added Steve.

Interestingly, the friend I went to CA:TWS with hadn't seen the first one, so we did the DVD first and her comment at the end was "he reminds me a lot of Carrot from the Discworld", which I can totally see and also means that some of my Steve Rogers thinking now comes attached to Terry Pratchett quotes, about simple not being stupid, and "personal isn't the same as important". Not that I think either Carrot or Steve are simple, but they share a view of people that isn't cynical, that expects people to be their best selves, and that makes other people underestimate them both. And they both look at duty first and their own wants second, making them fairly unusual characters because while there are plenty of heroic characters around, the heroism isn't usually framed in that kind of context. Winter Soldier spoilers and a *lot* more rambling under the cutCollapse )

Tl;dr: the film is awesome, Natasha and Sam are awesome, Steve is love.
I think I am on Doctor Who overload. I have watched The Night of the Doctor (awesome), The Science of Doctor Who (loved the sketches, thought the science was a bit tenuously linked), The Ultimate Guide (interesting but very annoying narration), The Culture Show (okay) and The Afterparty (total rubbish, which was expected) as well as

The Day of the DoctorCollapse )

and "The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot". My goodness, this was hilarious. I adored it, all the cameos (especially spoilersCollapse )) were fab and it was so sweet and lovely. If you haven't caught it, do go find it and watch because it is probably the most fun anniversary thing aside from the actual episode!
Atlantis was surprisingly fun! I almost didn't watch it, but then I caught the start and it wasn't what I expected at all so I failed to turn off and ended up sucked in.

Initial thoughts:
- yay Juliet Stevenson, but boo for getting her to do the clumsiest exposition scene. I suppose it is better to give it to someone really good, but still a bit better scripting there would have been nice.
- yay Mark Addy, you're still marvellous.
- Jason turned out to be much more attractive than he looked in the prepublicity pics I saw, and there was a rather sexy moment when I genuinely thought for a second they were going to have a naked man on evening telly. They did not, of course, but it was still rather nice.
- if there doesn't end up being Jason/Pythagoras slash I will be very surprised given the amount of touchy-feelingness going on there
- on that note, Pythagoras was adorable!
- hey look, it is Dr Bashir from DS9!
- and Sarah Parish, and they are both being ambiguously sort of evil, probably?
- interesting way of doing Jason as a fish out of water. The beginning really took me by surpriseCollapse )

And then there is SHIELD.
- enjoyable, but not much to it so far. I'm hoping they settle down and actually let the characters have time to breathe in the next one because it was a little rushed on who these people are.
- Coulson is great of course, and I am fond of Ming-Na from ER days
- Sky reminded me overwhelmingly of Faith from BtVS in her mannerisms and way of speaking at some points, I hope that doesn't continue since I would like her to be her own distinct character and not keep making me think of someone else. At other times she was that, so more would be nice.
- mostly though, I want to know why none of these powerful agencies can afford proper lighting in their facilities. Don't they have health and safety regs?

Last but not least, Orphan Black. I've only seen the first two episodes so far, but I am totally hooked, mostly because the main actress is so incredibly awesome. And the intrigue is intriguing, and there is an interesting anti-hero aspect to Sarah that I want to follow, or at least some definite amorality that is unusual for a POV character. I like a lot that I have no idea what it coming up next, because neither does Sarah and she is just winging it and rolling with whatever happens - makes it enjoyably confusing.
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