May 2011

S M T W T F S
1234567
891011 121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031    

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Friday, July 21st, 2017 02:58 pm
I still have to review Extra Virginity as well, but I actually liked that one, so it will take longer to compose….

One of the things I did get done yesterday between work, the ball game, and the Epic Sunburn, was finish a slim book of short stories called A City Equal to My Desire by James Sallis. This wasn’t a book that was recommended to me, which means I don’t have to feel bad about truly disliking it. I found it in a keyword search on the library website for books about ukuleles, and it has a short story called Ukulele And The World’s Pain, which admittedly was one of the better stories in the book despite still not being very good.

From what I can tell, he did pick the best story out of the book to develop into a novel, “Drive”, but it is very obviously unfinished in short-story form. Sallis has a couple of ongoing problems in the short story collection, one of which is that he tends to skip the vital information you need in order to know what the fuck is going on. And not in a “the blanks slowly get filled in” way, or in a “your imagination is more terrible” way (though there is a little of that) but just in a way where like…he says something that you understand to be vital to the story but which is missing context, then spends like a page describing the fucking diner someone’s sitting in, and by then any context forthcoming doesn’t get linked back. It’s like being in the middle of a paragraph when you hit the photo plates in an older book – yes the photos are very interesting thank you but I need to finish the thought you were sharing with me before I go back and look at them. I think maybe he thinks this is challenging the reader but it’s not, it’s just annoying and makes what are otherwise interesting premises totally opaque. I shouldn’t need to work this hard for a story about a hit man who decides not to kill a politician. 

If the book had a more cohesive theme in terms of the stories, it might be more readable – he clearly enjoys building worlds and then doesn’t quite know what to do with them once he’s built them, so if this was an entire book of “weird and different worlds” ala Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities, I would buy in more fully and I think he would have put a little more elbow in. But it’s not. It’s mostly “here’s a really interesting world and a person living in squalor in it does something while being in it”. Also he appears to be fascinated by describing things that are shaped like pi. And a lot of times it feels like he read a wikipedia article on something and wanted to share some knowledge, so he just kind of built a half-assed story around his wikiwander. 

And all of this I would probably let go if say, it was something I was noticing in a fanfic writer, or someone who was just starting out, or someone I felt was genuinely trying to get a point across. But there’s this inexplicable sense of arrogance to the collection, a sort of smugness to it that in professional writers drives me up the goddamn wall. Stephen King sometimes falls into the same trap, where it feels like the author believes they don’t have to respect their readers because they are The Writer. 

The thing about volumes of short stories is that you keep reading it because sometimes there is a real gem. And there are one or two good stories in the volume, but I don’t know if they’re worth the rest of it. 

So my review I guess is mostly me being annoyed, but it boils down to “If you like short stories in the SFF Noir genre, give it a whirl, but if you’re bored with a story none of them get better, so feel free to skip to the next one.” 

from Tumblr http://ift.tt/2gQid4Q
via IFTTT
Friday, July 21st, 2017 03:19 pm
Happy birthday, [personal profile] coughingbear!
Friday, July 21st, 2017 12:43 pm
Happy Birthday [personal profile] coughingbear
Thursday, July 20th, 2017 12:51 am
The poneighs, that is. They're on your piano, reading your books.

Grainbee2017

In this town, bereft of any eye-catching architecture or sculpture, there is this one piano in front of the library. Outside, studded with books. Inspired! Take a picture! Pianos outdoors is a thing.

It's the Ponies Around the World event time again. I was going to take a few ponies to work, to pose with a dinosaur, but, I was le tired. Just as well, llama guy popped up just after lunch with 23 bales of hay. Hay yes! I packed my loft to the rafters. Then I went to town.

So there you have it, there are still My Little Pony fans in Canterda and at least one in Grainbee, Kickbuck. Notice, we speak Fancy in Kickbuck. Oh la la! C'est magnifique!
Thursday, July 20th, 2017 12:28 am
I am like….90% sure I’m going camping this Friday. 

It depends a bit on the weather, but I’m mostly packed, I’ve cooked food that’s currently waiting in the freezer, and I have acquired the third Diane Mott Davidson book to read. 

The plan is to leave work early, catch the train to the campground, camp overnight, and in the morning hike out to a different train station further down the line, about a seven-mile trek, to do a longer endurance test than last weekend’s. Then I’ll catch the train home around noon on Saturday.

If something goes wrong, I can catch an evening train home on Friday until eight o’clock, or starting in the morning at 5:30, with little to no exertion. It’s pretty low-risk and I’m well stocked. I don’t have a sleeping pad, but my backpack has a partial one built-in, and I have one arriving tomorrow (though it might be too bulky, we’ll see). And honestly in this heat, I might just sleep on top of my sleeping bag in any case. 

Worst case scenario, the campground has heated, lockable shower cubicles with nice big floors. I’ve slept on worse. 

Caaaaaaamping! *jazz hands*

from Tumblr http://ift.tt/2uB78KA
via IFTTT
Wednesday, July 19th, 2017 02:12 am
Name: Ciarra
Age: 24
Country: US
Subscription/Access Policy: Friend away! I'm always looking for new friends to talk to. As for access, I grant almost everyone that subscribes to me. If I ever lock something it'll be something really personal and might be trigger-y. I will always warn if I do post something of that nature. There's no pressure to grant me access back.

Fannish Interests: Gosh, okay, I like a lot of things. But I also need to catch up on a lot of things. That's my problem.

I watch a lot of tv. Right now I'm watching shadowhunters and deciding if I want to catch up on Teen Wolf or not. My love for Scott McCall is enternal though. 

I really enjoy pokemon,  digimon,  yugioh,  sailor moon, power rangers, tf&f series, harry potter, kingdom hearts, and classic spn. all of those were my fandoms before I ever knew what fandom meant. i am casually into new doctor who but Ten was my first doctor and my favorite era. I'm always there for the companions the most though and I love bill potts so much. i love sherlock holmes adaptations but i gotta say my favorite is elementary. i'm also into low energy video games so pretty much anything nintendo and the sims. I'm a little obsessed with the sims and the fandom it has on youtube. just a little. Superheroes are cool too! I like the mcu and dcu but i haven't watched all of it yet bc reasons. Omg star wars is a big one lately too. and the new Star Trek and hopefully the new series!! as for cartoons steven universe is like the best thing that ever happened to me probably. aaaand books!! gosh do i hope to actually start to read books. The last full thing I read that wasn't fanfiction was the hunger games.

sp in summary i love anything cheesy, ridiculous, and about friendship :D 

I Like To Post About: honestly? cute animals. cats especially. i'll post about all the things i care about and I might  do reaction posts to a show or movie etc. I hope to at least post fic or a rec or just journaling in general! I'm trying to find my place in dreamwidth after being on tumblr for so long now. 

About Me/Other Info: I'm an ace nonbinary (she/they pronouns) lesbian. I'm autistic, mentally ill, and have chronic pain & illness. I'm infp, capricorn, and a hufflepuff. 

hurt/comfort is my whole life. It's like my one true kink. I love reading it, writing it, having discussions about it, reading meta about, you get it. It's my jam. 

I'll mostly comment on stuff for a while probably. I have a strict rule that is if I see an entry/read a fic/etc I comment on it. <3

Monday, July 17th, 2017 08:48 am
Good morning everyone, and welcome to Radio Free Monday!

Ways to Give:

[tumblr.com profile] readera's partner, J, has been in the ER multiple times in the past three months, and their finances are very strained because of it. They're raising $300-$500 for transportation costs and medicine; you can read more and reblog here or give directly here.

[tumblr.com profile] sleepyheathen needs to make next month's rent and is selling items, offering commissions, accepting donations, and has an Amazon wishlist up. You can read more, purchase, or reblog here, or donate via paypal here.

[tumblr.com profile] tony-in-distress is trying to escape an abusive situation and hoping to take her siblings with her. She needs to raise enough money for a deposit on a safe house for her and her siblings to live in. You can read more and help out here.

Anon is raising funds to help a friend cover debt and pay for legal bills after her abusive husband took custody of their youngest son. You can read more and give here; unfortunately due to Australian law apparently they can't provide much information.

Sarah Sadat had to leave her job recently due to stress and is facing mounting medical bills for a failing kidney and previous hospitalization; she has surgery scheduled for next month, and is fundraising to help cover medical and other bills. You can read more and give to the fundraiser here.

[tumblr.com profile] ohstephyy was let go from a job three months ago and hasn't been able to get another one; there are also other costs coming up to cover. You can read more and reblog here; a paypal address is available at the post.

[personal profile] laurashapiro linked to a fundraiser for [personal profile] kuwdora, a talented vidder who is trying to become a professional editor. She has an opportunity for professional coaching from the editor of Burn Notice and Empire, but can't afford the expenses on her own. You can read more and help out here.

Anon linked to [tumblr.com profile] tiarasnteakettles who is looking for work as a harpist, including attempting to purchase a harp that would be a massive upgrade from her current instrument and allow her more freedom in performance. You can read more about her situation and reblog here, including links to her Patreon and online store and Paypal donation address.

[tumblr.com profile] rilee16 is struggling to cover medical expenses after two head injuries last year, and has a fundraiser running to cover living expenses, previous medical bills, and a recent rent increase. You can read more and help out here.

News To Know:

Anon linked to [tumblr.com profile] wanderlust-anthology, an upcoming anthology of reimagined myths, legends, and folklore based on the theme Quests and Journeys. They are looking for creators for this anthology, which will be a full-color printed book with stories, comics, and artwork. You can read more at their tumblr or at the FAQ here; sign-ups close July 30th.

Housing:

Riel is looking for a roommate in Austin, TX to share a townhouse; she and the other roommate (male) are both grad students, and they do have a cat. Riel is very fandom-friendly. Lease starts in August. You can check out the townhouse here and get in touch at ariellayendler at gmail.com.

And this has been Radio Free Monday! Thank you for your time. You can post items for my attention at the Radio Free Monday submissions form. If you're not sure how to proceed, here is a little more about what I do and how you can help (or ask for help!). If you're new to fundraising, you may want to check out my guide to fundraising here.
Friday, July 14th, 2017 09:15 pm
A mango mixed jelly freeze from Chinatown is the best decision I have made all week.

from Tumblr http://ift.tt/2unZTVL
via IFTTT
Thursday, July 13th, 2017 08:13 pm
Fanlore is recruiting gardeners to help us with Fanlore!

Do you like writing about fandom? Gardeners are editors who work on Fanlore and take additional responsibilities regarding the wiki’s maintenance. In addition to adding content themselves, they make sure text isn’t deleted indiscriminately and tidy up after other editors, to help new content better fit the wiki’s guidelines. They can also participate in internal discussions about Fanlore events, policies, and documentation. No technical experience is required—you just need to know and love Fanlore, both as a user and an editor. If that sounds like you, come and join us!

Apply on the volunteering page! Applications are due 19 July 23:59 UTC
Thursday, July 13th, 2017 01:00 am
My parents signed me up for Nextdoor, which is like some kind of community-based mini facebook, and I am signed up in their neighborhood, which is (as we have established) The Boondocks.

I don’t mind belonging to their Nextdoor, it means that I will be kept abreast of local news, but also the local news is hilarious. 

The latest messages concern a HEATED DISCUSSION about hoof trimming because someone posted asking if anyone knows a farrier who will trim miniature horse hooves, which apparently most farriers have some kind of BASELESS PREJUDICE against according to this poster. Battle lines are quickly being drawn between the various camps including:

Miniature horses don’t need hoof maintenance the way regular horses do
Miniature horses ABSOLUTELY need hoof maintenance you monsters
Farriers who won’t do miniature horse hooves ain’t shit
Farriers who won’t do miniature horse hooves have their reasons
Miniature horses are some bullshit
Everybody shut up about miniature horses
I Have A Miniature Horse For Sale

I can’t wait to see who wins. I suspect it will be me. 

from Tumblr http://ift.tt/2tKmpaV
via IFTTT
Wednesday, July 12th, 2017 07:31 pm
Yesterday, what was a dull and muggy July was enlivened for many of us by the news of David Brook's sandwich gaffe spreading across the internet as the twinkling points of fire spread from Eddystone to Berwick bounds.

Brook decided to write an Opinion for the NYT under the headline How We Are Ruining America . Surprisingly, this didn't mention fracking, withdrawal from the Paris Climate Accords, electing Donald Trump, disbelieving in evolution and vaccination or deciding to take meetings with dodgy Russian lawyers promoted by even dodgier "music PR" people from Bury*. It didn't even touch on the US workplace culture as depicted in AAM, which goes more Hieronymous Bosch daily .

No: Brook has apparently just woken up and noticed:

Over the past generation, members of the college-educated class have become amazingly good at making sure their children retain their privileged status. They have also become devastatingly good at making sure the children of other classes have limited chances to join their ranks.


No shit, Sherlock. "Middle Classes Have Sharp Elbows And A Propensity For Drawing Up The Ladder Behind Them: News At Eleven."

Anyway, it appears that Brook was flabbergasted to realise this (why did he think Emily Post's works were bestsellers from the 1920s onwards, and that Judith Martin took on her mantle as "Miss Manners"?) and penned an opinion piece, which included this immortal paragraph:

Recently I took a friend with only a high school degree to lunch. Insensitively, I led her into a gourmet sandwich shop. Suddenly I saw her face freeze up as she was confronted with sandwiches named “Padrino” and “Pomodoro” and ingredients like soppressata, capicollo and a striata baguette. I quickly asked her if she wanted to go somewhere else and she anxiously nodded yes and we ate Mexican.


The phrase "Insensitively, I led her into a gourmet sandwich shop" has a rare beauty. It's like "I flicked my thong at him in a small, subtle, flirtatious gesture."

Fascinatingly, Brook had no hesitation in attributing his friend's horror to her class-based unease at the concept of Italian words applied to food, rather than her flabbergasted horror that somewhere, even in NYC, had the cheek to charge that for a tomato sandwich. Nor does it occur to him to do a quick translation for the benefit of his friend, along the lines of "That one's salami, that one's salami with slightly bigger bits of fat in it, that one's tomato, and that one's the house special." "Which is?" "Salami with tomato."

Anyway, Twitter reacted as one might expected, and various other upper middle class New Yorkers leapt athletically (it's all that yoga and Pilates) to his defence. Among them, my own particular favourite was Megan McArdle who came out with the classic


Holy assumptions about your audience, Batman!

Anyway, class in America. It's all about the Italian ham, apparently.

*Anyone wanting to know anything about Rob Goldstone, ask the M.E.N., apparently.

ETA And talking about the M.E.N, I was led serendipitously to this oldie but goodie Shock of Salford's 'bus pass matador' after £500k cannabis farm is discovered in the loft of his woodland mansion . I particularly liked the summary at the bottom of the article (which was mainly about the need for a "root and branch" approach to cannabis farming):
Frank has been flourishing his cape in the ring for around 50 years and is set to compete in Mijas and Seville in the coming weeks, despite turning 70 in 2012.

He retired with a dodgy knee at the age of 65 and has undergone a quadruple heart bypass operation, but made an unlikely return in 2009.

As well as fighting under the name of El Ingles - The Englishman - Frank was a winger with Sale rugby union club for eight years.
Tags:
Tuesday, July 11th, 2017 10:55 pm
Name: berryandthorn, Alex
Age: 20
Country: US
Subscription/Access Policy: Only a few of my more personal posts are locked. I'm always happy to add new friends!

Main Fandoms: At the moment Marvel is running/ruining my life. I especially love the Netflix shows, the Guardians of the Galaxy movies, and Spider-Man: Homecoming. I also love Star Wars, the Queen's Thief series, Harry Potter, the Earthsea Cycle, The Walking Dead (comics and show), Batman: The Animated Series, horror movies, and the Discworld series. 
Other Fandoms: The Man From U.N.C.L.E, Gravity Falls, Supernatural, Disney
Fannish Interests: I love talking about the shows, movies, and books I enjoy. I don't post any fanfic on this account, but I adore reading it and discussing it, too. 
OTPs and Ships: Gaby/Illya, Frank/Karen, Foggy/Marci

Favorite Movies: LOTR, Star Wars, GOTG, Sky, Atlantis: The Lost Empire, Pacific Rim, Logan 
TV Shows: Lots of sitcoms, Daredevil, Jessica Jones, and Luke Cage; The Walking Dead 
Books: Tons of children's and YA. Gillian Flynn, J.K. Rowling, S.E. Hinton, Dorothy Allison, Ursula K. Le Guin
Music: Pretty much anything that sounds good 
Comics/Anime/Misc: I read a lot of DC and Marvel. Cassandra Cain is my favorite Batgirl.

Other Info: I'm looking for anyone who's friendly and/or shares some interests. 
Tuesday, July 11th, 2017 11:03 pm
I just got home and the apartment REEKS of burnt toast. Which is weird since a) nothing is on fire (I checked), b) I haven’t even MADE toast in like a week, c) it didn’t smell like that this morning when I got home from running, and d) the smell is most intense when standing on my welcome mat just inside the door. 

I think Ghost is mad at me. They often express themselves with smells near the doorway. But I haven’t even done anything! The designated Ghost Drawer in the card catalogue shelf (under G, for Ghost) is open and everything, I checked. 

I cannot order you a pizza tonight, Ghost, I already have grocery delivery coming and I don’t want the Domino’s guy and the Peapod guy to make it awkward. We’ll have pizza on Thursday. 

from Tumblr http://ift.tt/2tc9GtH
via IFTTT