prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
Sometimes I visit LJs where all the posts seem so very targeted, and I'm left flailing awkwardly when I want to leave a more general comment. So here you go: the random post. Say hi, tell me my fic sucks, kick me in the pants to get me to update a story, ask why the hell I'm never in chat these days, tell me terrible knock-knock jokes, ask me about my friending policy* or my recs policy.** Whatever floats your boat!

* You don't need to ask! Friend to your heart's content. I may not reciprocate with this journal, but it's nothing personal. I mainly just use this one for writing. My other one [ profile] prettyarbitrary is my main one (also friend to your heart's content, though I don't f-lock much), though it's been sadly neglected due to time constraints.

** It baffles me that people feel they need to ask permission to rec something.
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
My last two months:

  • Dad died

  • Needed to buy a new car pronto speedy quick

  • Biopsy (thankfully a false alarm)

  • Still dealing with Dad's estate

I haven't been posting much on Tumblr, either, just reblogging things so that people would feel like I was still alive.  I'm not sure it has worked.

Mostly right now I just want to rave about Star Wars: Rebels.  Maybe I will.  Every 10 years or so the Star Wars Feels resurface and I feel the desire to impose my Deep Star Wars Thoughts on my friends.
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
Man... Fandoms come and go, and you get used to that. But the saddest part about a fandom's fall from its golden age is looking back and missing all those wild-eyed talents that made it so great.

I hope you guys are still out there, somewhere. Here's to you!
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
If you're on Tumblr and curious about this, follow the link over to see this post on Livejournal.  (LJ does not automatically crosspost to Tumblr; I used a web app called IFTTT to do that.)

Feel free to say hi to me in the comments on this post!  You don't even need to have an account. ^_^ But you could leave your name in your post so that I know who you are. (Sometimes, even people with LJ accounts are too lazy to log in and just do it this way.)

Livejournal has the capability to do a 'read more,' although on LJ it's called an 'LJ cut.'  I'm not sure if this translates to Tumblr, but I'm testing it right below.

Read more... )

Finally, LJ has the ability to do spoiler text! This is a bit of text that is collapsed unless you click the thing to read it.I imagine spoiler text probably does not translate to Tumblr, so you can probably see that there.  But on my LJ, you'll see what it looks like collapsed.

Edit: Like it or not, LJ is a site run by a for-profit company. It's doing pretty well, these days, but that can always change. If you prefer open source, or just a site that may have a bit less functionality but you can trust more not to change, check out Dreamwidth. It's an LJ clone, run on the same software so it works the same, but it was created specifically to give people an alternative place to go.

LJ and Dreamwidth work so well together that you can move between them and share information between them pretty easily. It's not perfect, but if you're on one, then you can mostly use the other.


May. 1st, 2015 09:56 pm
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
I'm here, I'M HERE. I swear it's like I can't keep track of two websites at once these days.

So. Netflix's Daredevil. Who's watched it? LET US DISCUSS.
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
Originally posted by [ profile] otw_staff at International Fanworks Day Drabble Challenge
Banner by Ania of various fanworks including cosplay, text, and visual art
Ready for a challenge? The Organization for Transformative Works is issuing one for short-form fanworks to celebrate International Fanworks Day! It's the first-ever IFD Drabble Challenge

The OTW wants to pay homage to fandoms with our very own day of recognition. ^_^
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
Originally posted by me at [ profile] arbitrary_fic

Characters: John Watson, Sherlock Holmes, OCs
Rating: Mature/R
Tags & Warnings: Vampire John, Angel Sherlock, Religious Themes, Demons, Vampires, Angels, Fallen Angels, Unhappy Ending, Revenge, Hell, Spiritual Corruption, John's life being all terrible all the time
Notes: A prequel to Graceless by belladonna_q, with her kind permission.

Hell is not a place, but a state.

Once, John can almost remember, the cosmos had been filled with light. He had been filled with music, made of it, his spirit a ringing, chiming note in a great joyous chorus of being.

There is no light here, nor music either. Humans refer to dirt when they speak of ugliness, but they can’t feel the radiance of earth, the brimming life of a swamp or cavern. But the beauty of life is in its meaning, in the love poured into it. That was gouged out of John’s eyes in the long burning fall, torn dripping from his memory. His Creator left him with the memory of a memory of having ever been loved, just enough to know that once, he felt something other than this eternal silent cold.

John learns, with clawing, bloody slowness, how to fend for himself. He learns the capacity to love wasn’t taken from him, or the need for it. He learns what it is to starve. To need things that aren’t given to him.

The humans are here, and he learns to love them in ways he’s fairly sure are new to him. With them near, he isn’t all alone. The bare, small song of their voices is an infinity better than silence. He learns that they can feed him. They’re sacred cattle with a worth and purpose beyond anything his blinded eyes can still see, and he can take it from them, and be warmed for a few minutes by the fire of their souls.

He loves these beautiful brief creatures savagely, helplessly, with a frightened need.

Read More
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
Characters: John Watson, Sherlock Holmes, OCs
Rating: Mature/R
Tags & Warnings: Vampire John, Angel Sherlock, Religious Themes, Demons, Vampires, Angels, Fallen Angels, Unhappy Ending, Revenge, Hell, Spiritual Corruption, John's life being all terrible all the time
Notes: A prequel to Graceless by belladonna_q, with her kind permission.

John learns, with clawing, bloody slowness, how to fend for himself. He learns the capacity to love wasn’t taken from him, or the need for it. He learns what it is to starve. To need things that aren’t given to him.

Hell is not a place, but a state. )
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
I feel like Constantine just leapt whatever pitfall it'd been struggling with. Hot damn.

I've been enjoying it, but (barring the episode with Gary Lester) something about it always felt a little awkward, like the actors were still ironing out their roles, or maybe they were still working on the fit between John and Zed. That's all gone now.

There was a moment when Matt Ryan was standing half in shadow and he turned to face the camera, and I caught my breath because every bit of 'this is a TV show and that's an actor' fell away, and it was nothing but John Constantine right there, in the flesh.

If this is a milestone and the rest of the season falls together like this, then they had better renew the show or else I will go down to NBC's offices, refuse to leave, and drink all their coffee until they agree.
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
It occurred to me that my international fellow Grimm peeps might not realize that Grimm being set in Portland is an in-joke.  Or a cultural commentary.  Kind of a bit of both.

Portland, Oregon is known as one of the great hipster enclaves of the US. One of the city slogans is "Keep Portland weird."  (Originally meant as a campaign to support Portland's idiosyncratic locally-owned businesses, but...well, it was embraced.) It's brimming over with counter-culture liberal hippies, weird artists and master artisans who practice the finer points of now-obscure trades everybody else in the US long ago gave over to mass manufacturing. Here is a brief story about Portland, a place where a singing taco on roller skates doesn't really surprise people.

In particular, Monroe: a flannel-wearing, gourmet-coffee-swilling, environmentally-concerned clockmaking werewolf with a passion for quirky family history and Old World memorabilia, who manages his 'inner wolf' via a vaguely New Age regimen of pilates and vegetarianism...  Honestly, if you take out the word 'werewolf' he's a quintessential Portlandian.  He's basically your typical Portlandian who also just happens to be a werewolf (hey, Portlandians don't judge; everybody's got their thing).

(There's a love of flannel that will not die in the Pacific Northwest.  It's such a perfect antidote to the damp, chilly winters they get up there.)

And there's a reason Rosalee and her alternative medicine spice shop with its trade in non-illegal mind-altering drugs doesn't turn heads.  It's far from the only one of those to be found in the city.

Also, the coffee.  You might have noticed everybody on the show is coffee-crazed (I mean, aside from the fact that half of them are either cops or medical professionals). Portland is one of the lynchpin cities in a belt of connoisseur coffee obsession that runs along the coast of the Pacific Northwest from northern California up into Canada.  Same goes for craft beers and microbrews.  Perhaps this is the reason Portland seems to attract so many specifically central European monster types; a migrating people can live without a lot of things, but good beer is hard to leave behind.

So really, if there's any city in the US that seems likely to play host to ethnic monster enclaves grappling to meld tradition with a monster version of the modern American dream, it's probably Portland.
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
I've gone quiet again because I have been hiding from the internet and reconnecting with real which I of course mean paperback books and TV.

What I have been watching:

Grimm - I just spent the past two weeks mainlining the entire run of Grimm so far, and catching up on season 4, and then flailing about it with over in her LJ.  Grimm is one of those shows that got off to a slow start.  Season 1 was not captivating.  But they found their stride about halfway through season 2, and as of season 3 it has taken its rightful place upon the throne of dark fairytale TV.  It's one part Buffy, one part Supernatural, and one part something all its own where fairytale monsters have their own ethnic conclaves in modern cities and cops respond to domestic violence calls at the three little pigs' house.

Doctor Who - I watched the first episode of the season, and then the last two.  I loved those and have no desire whatsoever to expose myself to any of the episodes in between.  BUT THOSE LAST TWO, LET'S TALK ABOUT THEM. *points at comments*  Oh god, that's the best Doctor Who I have seen in years.  And just possibly the best version of the Master EVER.

Sleepy Hollow - working on catching up on this one now.  I'm a few episodes into season 2 (so careful with spoilers!).  I enjoy this show but so far this season doesn't grab me like some of the others I'm watching, or the way S1 did.  I actually voluntarily stopped watching for the evening, when I could have continued.  But, there is John Noble, whom I would pay to watch recite the phone book.  I am captivated every time he's on the screen.

Constantine - some of you may remember that I adore Hellblazer of old.  The main DC John Constantine is softer than Vertigo's version (after all, kids could potentially encounter him), and the TV series is based on the DC version rather than the Vertigo version.  EXCEPT.  He's maybe a leeeetle more Vertigo than that after all.  Up through episode 3 I was beginning to wonder whether they were really going to manifest the potential here.  And then episode 4 happened.  Oh.  Oh YES.

Also, I cackled at the place where they apparently figured out they could draw the line on John's smoking habit.  As long as he doesn't actually puff on camera, apparently he can walk around with it dangling out of his mouth.
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
Happy Halloween! The day when we dress up as ghosts and goblins so as to confuse and ward away the returning spirits of our ancestors, who may be dead but still remember that they loaned us that power tool the one time and never got it back.
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
Characters: Sherlock Holmes, John Watson
Rating: R
Tags & Warnings: bloodplay, rough sex, possessive Sherlock, violent fantasies, weird romance

It’s the transitive property. John is Sherlock’s; therefore, what belongs to John belongs to Sherlock. It’s the closest Sherlock can get. John’s laptop, John’s bed, John’s tea mug, John’s toothbrush. And it’s utterly unfair that while the skin cells and hair strands and traces of DNA can transfer, the significance John imbues these items with does not. Sherlock does not become more a part of John’s morning routine for taking his tea mug.

Well. That’s not entirely true. )
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
Originally posted by [ profile] ursulav at Swan Brothers

It happened one summer that a curse fell on my family. The details aren’t important. We could be here all night with who married whom and who cursed what. There was a curse, that’s all you need to know.

All seven of my brothers were turned into swans. From loud, hard-handed boys, they became mute birds, with wings as white as cloud and eyes as dark as heaven.

There was a great deal of chaos. There usually is, when someone turns into a bird. They went mad indoors and had to be ushered out into the gardens, to flap and sulk and arch their necks in beautiful reproach.

The wise woman of the woods came to me, with her hair wrapped up in leaf and copper wire. She told me that I was given the task of weaving seven shirts in silence, and only then would they be restored to human form.

A single word spoken, a single stitch unsewn, and they would be swans forever.

As soon as the wisewoman left the room, I pitched my spindle into the fire and sang aloud the raunchiest song I knew.

I never liked my brothers. They made much better swans.

The End

(This is my buddy Otter's fault. She's my editor and the last book has involved a lot of screaming and it...err...well, what with one thing and another, I thought I needed to write something based on the swan brother fairy tale, and then I realized it really didn't need to be novel-length...)

Ursula Vernon is magnificent.
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
Hiya, folks!  I promised this a few weeks back, but finally have the brain real estate freed up to actually get to it.

Let's have an LJ party!  Come on in here and tell me about the things you're burning to talk about, and I will be your conversation partner!

Obsessed with tiny fandoms (or large fandoms, for that matter)?  Heart breaking over overlooked ships?  Want to raise a shout for interstitial feminism?  Or find somebody to coo with over adorable animals?  What's got your engine revving lately? From threatened bees to fascination with BDSM, lay it on me and I promise I'll read and reply.

And hopefully when you've commented, you'll take a look through the comments and find someone else you can have a chat with!
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
Did I forget to do my last Three Good Things entry?  I did!  Well, extra perspective, I guess.  Of course, so little happened Sunday that I feel sort of like I don't have three things to list.

1: BUT WAIT, that was one of the good things!

2: Also, my sister made leek and potato soup.  God I love this soup.  It's buttery and tangy and filling and just so good.

3: I got back to (some of) my roots by binging on Transformers comics.  I've always loved Transformers.  Even though the old cartoon was simplistic, even as a kid I could see there was so much potential in the idea of a race of ancient alien robots fighting a war of millennia across the stars.  And while Michael Bay's movies are certainly not a place to find much of that potential realized, in comics there have been some really great attempts.  A now-defunct comics publisher called Dreamwave made a really good, interesting attempt at it several years ago, including a version of Megatron who owned a certain brand of warrior mysticism to go along with Optimus Prime as both military and spiritual leader of his people. These days, IDW has the rights--which is splendid because IDW does one hell of a comic, with smart writing and art high-quality art and printing.

So, I dove back into the digital collection of issues I've accumulated over time.  (Gave myself an annoying virus when I installed a reader for the file format they're stored in.)   The psychology of a species that never dies of old age and is also hard to kill otherwise. The culture and caste systems that might evolve over millions of years with minimal turnover in population.  Alien robot mysticism!  Alien robot gender!  (They've got individuals that ID as 'female' but it's not like they actually have sexes.  No, seriously, they've got a spotlight issue devoted to a transgender Transformer.) Plus, now and again a deft touch of the dystopian horror of a war that has lasted for longer than entire geological ages of the earth and left their own home planet a shattered, lifeless husk.  Perhaps most interesting is seeing what ancient alien robots might consider body horror.  It's not breaking the boundaries of sci-fi or anything, but it's so satisfying to read stories exploring the same sorts of things my imagination went cruising after.
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
1: Today has been a restorative day of slothful leisure, and I still have another day of weekend!  Woo!  God, I needed this.

2: Writing sensory deprivation smut is happy-making.

3: Leftover Chinese is the food of the gods.

Bonus 4: My parrots are being so cute right now that if you could see them, you would be driven insane by your inability to process the cosmic magnitude of their cuteness. (So now you know what happened to me.)
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
1: Vacuumed and cleaned today, and got to spend all day with that feel-good feeling of a clean house around you. ^_^

2: The weather was stunning today, and I had nowhere better to be than lounging around in it.

3: I truly do have an amazing job.  I enjoy it, it challenges me, and I know I'm making a difference, both for the bottom line of the college where I work and for the students and scientists.  It's the kind of job that people talk about when they say, "If you love what you do, then it never feels like work."  Well...truthfully it does feel like work, but it feels like work you WANT to do, which makes all the difference.  I had a hell of a week this past week, but I knew it was only in passing, and that furthermore a lot of it was due to the overabundance of success in the past couple of weeks, and most importantly that it was WORTH it.

If you're wondering how you get a job like this, incidentally, I got mine by working my butt off for it.  I decided somewhere around 2006, working a job that was already beginning to impact me from long-term stress and unhappiness, that I wasn't going to rest until I got a job and career I loved.  I then spent two years searching for a field that I could both enjoy and make money in, another year and a half preparing and researching for grad school, another two years mining grad school for everything I could get out of it, and finally a year on the job market while I filled my time with short-term freelance work, refusing to settle for positions that sounded only kind of okay.  It took a lot of preparation and a fair amount of luck, and more than once I had months of abject terror and anxiety as I jumped into the void and trusted that I'd land safely.

It was not easy, and I did it because I knew that my long-term happiness and security were at stake.  I am not a person who CAN work in a job I don't love for very long without it impacting my physical health.  It all started with me confronting that and admitting to it, and then deciding what I needed instead.

But listen.  It wasn't ONLY luck.  Those times when I cast myself into the void, it wasn't at random.  I looked at my goal and what it would take to get there.  I lined up the skills and resources I'd need.  I looked at the risks and did things to minimize or survive them as much as possible, lined up as many points in my favor as I could manage, and then sweated through the wait and anxiety attacks to discover the fruits of my work.  A change like this is terrifying.  A goal like this is huge.  But it IS something you can orchestrate.
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
Characters: Nicholai/Yuri (Puera)
Rating: NC-17
Tags & Warnings: Rape, shapeshifting, shapeshifting sex swap, monster sex, hate sex
Notes: Written all of 10 years ago--my very first smut fic! (Lookit me with the kinky non-con monster sex, I was so precocious.) I don't even remember enough about this game to recall what the deal with Nicolai's hand was anymore.

“Killing you isn’t enough,” Nicholai explains lightly. “The Mistletoe wasn’t enough; after the way you’ve interfered with me, I need you to suffer.”

They’re both on the floor, Yuri on his back with Nicholai kneeling astride him, pinning the Harmonixer’s hands above his head. Yuri’s startled at the exorcist’s strength; he can’t break free of that iron grip. Belatedly, he thinks following the red-haired priest here was a big mistake.

The best way to hurt a man like you is to bend that stiff pride until it breaks. )
prettyarbitrary: (Fuzzy Cthulhu)
1: I took tomorrow off, so it's the beginning of my weekend!

2: It's equinox this weekend, and the crisp taste of fall is in the air.  The year is dying, but somehow it reinvigorates me.  There's something boundlessly optimistic about fall.  As the year grows older, the world grows richer and more abundant.

3: I am at this moment having one of my rare cups of coffee.  As always, the smell reminds me of my mom.  It makes me miss her, and feel close to her.

Long before my people ever came to the New World, this time of year was a time to honor our dead and the things that have passed.  I suppose it's still in the blood.


prettyarbitrary: (Default)

October 2015

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