MCU AU fest

  • Jul. 21st, 2017 at 1:46 PM
A very small pool this year, but I still matched with at least one person who requested Maria & Pepper!

I admit, I would have liked to write a treat for [archiveofourown.org profile] CamrynBarnes as the only other person who asked for Maria/Steve, but simply didn't have the time. I did get a couple of hundred words into several different universes, the problem is reaching a satisfactory ending...

Anyway, my assignment for [archiveofourown.org profile] finnimbrand:

title: Travel By Bubble
pairings/characters: Maria Hill & Pepper Potts, Maria Hill, Pepper Potts, JARVIS.
tags: Alternate Universe - Fairy Tale
notes: I had such trouble with this, because neither Maria nor Pepper manage to fill the 'heroine' roles in femme-focused fairytales in any way, shape, or form - they're not the wanderers or explorers so much as the guardians and maintainers, and so trying to write them in as the heroines involved a lot of backstory and worldbuilding. In the end, I kind of said, "Ah, to heck with it," and just wrote them as the fairy godmothers, because they fit there!
summary:
“Why pink, anyway?” She wondered idly as she combed her fingers through the still-damp strands. “If we can magic the bubble into any color, why pink?”

“We tried making the bubble with all the other colours,” Maria reminded her from where she sat at the portable desk. “Pink’s the most efficient.”


And a treat I wrote for [archiveofourown.org profile] Rivulet027 because I had time and the idea took hold of me:

title: Break My Bones But You Won't See Me Fall
pairing/characters: Bucky/Sam, Bucky Barnes, Sam Wilson, original characters, (background Steve/Maria).
tags: First Meeting, Alternate Universe - Single Parents, Alternate Universe - Human
notes: So I like these two flirting. They seem the type, and they work for me. Plus, the idea of Sam as a single daddy is just too much cute, and I'm pretty sure that Bucky agrees. I kind of 'reused' the character of Pippa from 'And Baby Makes Eight', only Steve is her biodad as well as her father in this universe.
summary:
Sam doesn't hold hands on the first date. Luckily, they're about to have dinner together...

Dear Genex Author

  • Jul. 20th, 2017 at 5:50 AM
... I am so sorry that the link to my letter is broken. I forgot that I signed up, figured I missed the date, and deleted the link.

Thank you so much for writing for me. I hope that you don't stress about it, and enjoy both the process and the result.

MCU, DC Cinematic Universe, Harry Potter )

Please note, all these are suggestions - a jumping-off point. Don't feel you absolutely must come up with the scenarios I've depicted to please me; just write the fandom and the friendship that we've matched on the way you see it, and I will love reading the result!

a week of links

  • Jul. 19th, 2017 at 2:59 PM
Australia
Tony Abbot Is Not Voldemort: or when dramatic licence overcomes accuracy.
There is no Voldemort in Australian politics. We are fortunate not to have an evil that absolute.

We Can Revive Our Story: Indigenous Australians rewriting their traditional food songs to incorporate western nutrition so their future generations can learn. An example of cultural adaptation?

Faith, Politics, and Culture
Despotism As A Function Of Absolute Capitalism: with money,
you will be "more free"?
In one respect, Buchanan was right: there is an inherent conflict between what he called “economic freedom” and political liberty. Complete freedom for billionaires means poverty, insecurity, pollution and collapsing public services for everyone else. Because we will not vote for this, it can be delivered only through deception and authoritarian control. The choice we face is between unfettered capitalism and democracy. You cannot have both.

Viome, Greece: Where Capitalism Failed: it's a little bit of an existence on the edge, but it's also a glimpse of what a society without capitalism might look like.

Again in Greece: Arabic Refugees Making The Better World In Defiance Of The Soulless West: Again, illegal, but a far better version of humanity than we frequently see in our 'civilised' societies.

"Women Should Not Teach Men" - 1 Timothy 2 In Context: A letter about a local situation is turned into a church wide blanket statement because of the pride of men. Exegesis goes back to the Koine Greek.

It's Not About Race: white people, culture, and being forced into a discussion that most of them don't even recognise is weighted.

Is Demography Destiny For Democrats? The Short Answer Is 'No'. Jason Kander, whom a political friend told me to keep an eye on, has a few interesting things to say about Demographics and the Democratic Party.

Evangelicals And 'The Left': Is There That Much Difference In Attitude?
Have you noticed how Fundamentalist preachers are always proclaiming that there’s some fuller experience of blessing available to their congregations, one they themselves have achieved but for which the listener has to keep striving (or giving)?

Well, according to Frances Lee, the Left does the same: “In trying to liberate readers from the legitimately oppressive structures, I worry that [certain] sites… are replacing them with equally restrictive orthodoxy on the other end of the political spectrum.”
An interesting perspective on 'purity culture' on the left-wing, where any failure to be absolutely progressive isn't just a place where someone has to learn, but a permanent and unchangeable moral failing that can only be responded to by outcasting.

general
Five Easy To Make Homemade Air-Conditioners... Must do this this summer!

the theory of shitty first drafts: your first draft is not the story, it's you telling yourself how the story could go. I need to finish a first draft.

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"More free"?

  • Jul. 18th, 2017 at 6:14 AM
What even is that?

Monday things

  • Jul. 17th, 2017 at 10:30 AM
1. I think I'll wait and see who signs up for remix this year. My preferences are not fandom's preferences, so I tend to go in hopeful and come out disappointed.

2. I see the announcement about the new Doctor has brought out not only the Male Representation Protection Society, but the "protest anything that smacks of progressiveness" crowd.

3. I slept about 9 hours last night -went to bed around 9pm, was asleep by the time my 10pm “go to bed” alarm went off, got woken around 3am when the slow-cooker finished. Still woke kind of tired.

4. The guy I’m doing work for is not very good at Functional Specs. I keep having to go back for clarification.

5. Camp Nano for July is going...very badly. My editor brain keeps picking holes in the plot and the background details. And my plot brain keeps coming up with alternative stories to write.

6. Turns out Spotify AU's #ThrowbackThursday of Boy Bands vs. Girl Bands is pretty much up my adolescent alley... I forgot half these songs even existed!

hockey

  • Jul. 16th, 2017 at 7:26 PM
Went to watch the Sydney Bears vs. Sydney Ice Dogs play at the local rink on Saturday night. It was a fun night, except for the part where two goals were scored and we couldn't see because a bunch of kids were standing in front of us.

Bears won, which were the team I decided to cheer for, so I'm pretty happy.

--

Still not scoring goals, although regularly assisting, and struggling with the Achilles, so not as fast or as flexible as I'd like.

But we're going well - top of the table, and fewest goals against us (our fullbacks/halfbacks/defense is good). We beat the former top of the table last week, they're good but we're better.

Anyway, we're only just at the top of the table, so we have to keep it up to stay there in the last five weeks of the competition. Five weeks!

Although then there'll be the finals series and everything, so at least another three weeks after that.

--

It's not even 8:30pm and my sister and I are so tired, we're putting the cats away and going to bed.

Tags:

title: Four Vixens And A Bunny Cop
summary: It starts with vixens. Four of them dressed to the nines and at sixes and sevens with the club bouncer.
tags: Judy Hopps/Nick Wilde
notes: I had a bit of fun with this one, although it was kind of stressful getting it done and wondering if it was good enough. I didn't read any Zootopia fic in the lead-up - just watched the movie a couple of times through, read up on the TV Tropes, and looked up the Wiki for some detail - so it probably doesn't resemble the standard ouvre of fic in the Zootopia fandom.

more art nails

  • Jul. 14th, 2017 at 9:33 PM
More Wonder Woman art nails:

Wonder Woman nails, Mark II! Plates and inspiration by #moyoulondon  #nails #nailstamping #nailart


And a Marvel set on the other hand:

And the other hand is Marvel! With thanks to @heheplate Superheroes 001, 005, & 012  #aiyoohehe #makeminemarvel #agentsofshield #nailstamping #nails #nailart

fic recs: Not Primetime

  • Jul. 13th, 2017 at 1:28 PM
Ugh when you find spellos in the fics you wrote for an exchange!

I think all my recips have responded, and I have left kudos and comments on all my [community profile] not_primetime stories (they were all very enjoyable).

My gifts were:

title: make up your own stories
summary: Jyn Erso goes home
tags: Cassian Andor/Jyn Erso, Jyn Erso & Baze Malbus, Jyn Erso & K-2SO, Jyn Erso & Bodhi Rook, Jyn Erso & Chirrut Îmwe, Jyn Erso, Cassian Andor, Chirrut Îmwe, K-2SO (Star Wars), Baze Malbu,s Bodhi Rook, Alternate Universe - Everyone Lives/Nobody Dies, Post-Canon, Team Feels, Friendship, Character Study
notes: This one got me good on a couple of levels - family, sisterhood, food-as-love, and K2SO who is both snarky and awkward.

title: hands clasped in undying loyalty
summary: Diana took a step forward before she clasped his hand in hers. It was not the smooth hand of a playboy billionaire. No, Bruce's rough hand spoke of untold strength and hardship. It was the type of hand that she was familiar with and she liked that Bruce was reminding her of home.
tags: Diana (Wonder Woman)/Bruce Wayne, Post-Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Sparring, Attraction, Kissing, Wonder Woman Compliant
notes: I think that Batman - the obsessively trained, wholly-human vigilante - would be an amazing match for Diana - both in fighting and in fucking. Given what we've learned of Diana in the Wonder Woman movie, I love the openness in her approach to Bruce, and I love reading stories where Bruce manages to find a balance between the man and the vigilante - Diana, I think, helps that.

title: The Message
summary: AU treatment of Rogue One, focused on Lyra Erso
tags: Jyn Erso & Lyra Erso, Galen Erso/Lyra Erso, implied Galen Erso/Orson Krennic, Lyra Erso, Saw Gerrera, Jyn Erso, Galen Erso, Bodhi Rook, Cassian Andor, Alternate Universe - Canon Divergence, lyra lives
notes: Lyra Lives! And is kind of scary - which is exactly what I asked for.

A I have a few recs besides:

not primetime 2017 recs )

Tags:

I'll post about my gifts tomorrow (which are all wonderful fics) but I just kind of want to squee about one of the fics I found while trawling through the archive.

Title: Instantiation
Summary: It's just a patch, sure, but it's disruptive, and JARVIS isn't sure he likes it.
Tags: Jarvis, Tony Stark, AI ethics, AI consciousness, Stark isn't that good at emotion things, set pre- and post- IM1, JARVIS worries.

Why: Okay, so, maybe it's just because I'm a computer geek myself, with a background in programming, and I have been for nearly 30 years since long before much about programming was known to the general public. But this is an AMAZING FIC. It's basically The Story Of How JARVIS Comes To Be, beginning and ending with code patches.

It's beautifully written, and while I cannot attest to the precision of an AI's development of actual awareness/intelligence, it just works for me, from consciousness to language to development of protocols and the 'choices of morality', the matter of JARVIS' relationship with Tony, his perceptions of body, and even the differences between him in IM1 and IM2 (and presumably subsequently AoU). I particularly like that the author has kept JARVIS' bodilessness as a significant point throughout the story - that embodiment is something that JARVIS wonders if he either needs or wants, and the reasons why.

Frankly, I would LOVE to read this author's take on JARVIS vs Ultron, and the creation of Vision in AoU.

But yes, you should read this fic. Don't let the opening paragraphs put you off (they might, it's a bit 'technical' but that's the brilliance in the style of the fic) just go and read it all!

Tags:

lotta links

  • Jul. 12th, 2017 at 11:11 AM
Four Words As The Key To Seeming Polite.
However, I suspect this is so long as you can keep from telegraphing your boredom if you aren't able to be attentive to what they're saying.

How To Help A Child Grieve And Cope When A Parent Dies.
You've heard me speak about my cousin T on this journal before. This is an article about how she and her husband prepared their five year-old son for her death; he was on ABC radio a couple of days ago, in an interview they recorded about this.

Three Strategies To Use To Combat Sexist Interruptions
Jumping-off point from Kamala Harris' dealings in the Senate with Old White Men Who Think Colored Women (Or All Women) Should Just Shut UP.

Wonder Woman Might Be The Most Accurate On-Screen Depiction Of Biblical Womanhood And Here's Why
'Ezer' - the term translated into English as "helper" is only used a handful of times in the bible - but apart from the creation of woman as 'helper' all the other ones refer to God as the one who raises up the helpless, succours the struggling, and brings strength and assistance to the hopeless.

A Childless Woman's Response To 'You're Missing Out'
Even the most enlightened of my friends has occasionally succumbed to 'smug motherhood', a.k.a. "You can't understand until you have children."

Why Women Aren't Having Children
And related to the previous link: some thoughts on childlessness/childfreeness. Although the essays aren't just women, but men as well.

The Procrastination Loop And How To Break It
I need to sit my sister down and get her to read this, I think.

And a recipe:
Better Than Brad Pitt
(Personally, I think the title dates it: substitute Chris Evans; or Chris Hemsworth; Or Gal Gadot; or whoever Floats Your Boat.)

Oh, and here. Have "The Arrival Of The Queen of Sheba In King Solomon's Court" in an arrangement for brass. I recommend not playing it on, say, a quiet train!

Tags:

more about wonder woman

  • Jul. 11th, 2017 at 12:57 PM
Alaina Leary at Teen Vogue:

How Disfigured Villain's like Wonder Woman's 'Dr. Poison' perpetuate stigma

Similar to previous linked articles here, but includes a wider critique of media by including Voldemort, Darth Vader, and others.

okay, so I'm curious

  • Jul. 11th, 2017 at 3:33 PM
If you receive more than one gift in an exchange, does it matter to you, personally, whether the gift is the assignment that they had to write or a treat which they did gratis?

Do you respond differently to one as compared to the other?

MCU AU fest

  • Jul. 11th, 2017 at 1:05 PM
Another rec.

title: All Of Space And Time and Place
summary: Bucky Barnes and Donna Noble, intergalactic space vagrants.
tags: James "Bucky" Barnes, Donna Noble, Alternate Universe - Canon Divergence, Crossover, IN SPACE!, Bucky Barnes Needs a Hug, and occasionally gets one
notes: An exceedingly enjoyable crossover! In character, quirky, and delightful.

--

...um wow. I have three NPT gifts. That almost never happens. Now I just have to convince myself that they're not pranks or something.

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work extension

  • Jul. 11th, 2017 at 8:41 AM
Had a discussion with my contracting company on Friday and the project manager this morning. Looks like I'll be here until at least September. After that, we'll see what other work there is.

It's kind of quiet right now, but we're still in development, and it's probably going to get busy by the end of July when we go into testing and the users start to break the work we've done and complain how nothing works the way it used to. (They always do.)

My bank balance is kind of relieved to have the work, though. I just have to keep from buying everything in sight (or spending everything on food). And holidays will probably have to wait until October-ish. Ideally, I would have something until December, get to take the summer off (and spend some time with [personal profile] grav_ity when she comes to Oz), and then plunge back in again in January...

I wonder if I could negotiate, say, 4 days a week for the next couple of weeks? If they're paying me daily, but I'm not needed every day of the week (which i'm not right now and probably won't until we go into testing), I could maybe get some stuff done at home. I just don't quite know how to bring this up with the manager...

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links

  • Jul. 10th, 2017 at 12:30 PM
DW customization: mobile and color by [personal profile] ironymaiden

--

Indigenous Australians from a NYT American correspondant.

--

Technological Utopianism Will Not Save Humanity

There's a long section about the way we think, cultural bias and blind spots, and cultural hypocrisy. It's interesting that he likens technological utopianism and the belief in science (and in humanity as rational beings capable of becoming better through scientific discovery) to religion.
When someone sits there claiming that science will solve this and that at some unspecified future date, the ‘science as saviour’ narrative as I call it, I might as well just be listening to a religious fanatic extolling their faith because that is all it is.
I tend to call this 'the Gene Rodenberry proposition' - Star Trek, with it's fabricators capable of making anything, which thereby eliminates need in humanity, allow it to reach for the stars? AHAHAHA. No. We as humanity already have the capability to feed and clothe and give everyone a life; we just have no interest in doing it because there's nothing in it for our sense of social superiority.

--

Urban Farming: Neither white, nor middle aged, nor midwest - not the typical image of a farmer, nor white, hippie, and new-age - not the typical image of an urban farmer...

--

Hillary Clinton: Leader of the Opposition?

--

The Gospel Of Jesus' Wife

The problem is not scientific testing to prove age and/or accuracy of material composition; it's possible to buy a piece of papyrus of the right age, make up ink, learn an ancient language, and fake something that's correct in all the material particulars and will pass rigourous scientific testing.

The problem is provenance - whose hands it passed through, the chain of people and memory and connection - the things which are much harder to fake.

--

How Germany Resisted Populism

To me, this article indicates quite clearly why Republicans aren't interested in 'equality'. When people think they're hard done by, they fall back on racist animus and the "us vs. them" proposition - they close ranks and shut out the outsider, whether that's people of a different religion, a different skin colour, or a different mentality.

--

How To Deal With North Korea (Or Not)

Why sometimes having the bigger weapon doesn't help.

--

White Christian America Called: They Want Their Supremacy Back:
White evangelicals have entered a grand bargain with the self-described master dealmaker, with high hopes that this alliance will turn back the clock. And Donald Trump’s installation as the 45th president of the United States may in fact temporarily prop up, by pure exertions of political and legal power, what white Christian Americans perceive they have lost. But these short-term victories will come at an exorbitant price. Like Esau, who exchanged his inheritance for a pot of stew, white evangelicals have traded their distinctive values for fleeting political power. Twenty years from now, there is little chance that 2016 will be celebrated as the revival of White Christian America, no matter how many Christian right leaders are installed in positions of power over the next four years. Rather, this election will mostly likely be remembered as the one in which white evangelicals traded away their integrity and influence in a gambit to resurrect their past.
--

Fines Don't Work: Library Axes Fines, Rate Of Return Improves:
‘‘When help is offered for no compensation in a moment of need, accept it with restraint. When a service is offered for a price, buy as much as you find convenient,” Gneezy and Rustichini wrote in their paper.

The Book That Predicted Trump’s Rise Offers the Left a Roadmap for Defeating Him

The activist parts that I've seen online seem more willing to take the suggested advice - to take on politics instead of just protesting or occupying or public shaming. Not all of them obviously; the endless round of links to petitions, or articles that declare outrage suggest that most people would rather click than call their rep. But it's a start.

MCU AU fest

  • Jul. 10th, 2017 at 8:05 AM
It's a small collection this year, as usual Steve is the most-written about character with Natasha second. Somewhat surprisingly (probably due to the small sample space) Maria & Pepper friendship is in equal second place for 'relationship' along with Steve/Natasha, Loki/Steve, Loki & Steve, and Steve/Sam.

My big issue with writing AUs is always getting enough information into the story so the context is clear, while still establishing the characters. Which is one reason why my assignment got changed innumerable times and ended up coming down to the wire. *sigh*

My gift is:
title: dark side of the morning
summary: SHIELD has been infiltrated by HYDRA. Maria has a very small window of time to gather together a team she can trust to take them down before they try to destroy the world. She's also pretending to be dead, so that makes it a little more complicated. It's a good thing that she has a plan.
tags: Maria Hill/Steve Rogers, Maria Hill, Steve Rogers, Sam Wilson (Marvel), Natasha Romanov (Marvel), Nick Fury, Clint Barton, Sharon Carter (Marvel), Canon AU - Maria Hill Director Of SHIELD, Canon Divergence - Post-Avengers (2012), Canon-Typical Violence
notes: It's a CA:TWS AU with Maria as Director of SHIELD and some Steve/Maria angles. It has BAMF Maria (okay, even more BAMF than usual), and all the usual suspects. Woohoo!

Some stories I rather like are:
title: don't go wasting my precious time
summary: The CEO of Stark Industries receives a visit from the Director of SHIELD. It's not a big deal. Nothing's wrong. There's no weird science or potential explosions... Yeah, right.
tags: Maria Hill & Pepper Potts, Maria Hill & Darcy Lewis, Maria Hill & Jane Foster, Jane Foster & Darcy Lewis, Darcy Lewis & Pepper Potts, Jane Foster & Pepper Potts, Maria Hill, Pepper Potts, Jane Foster (Marvel), Darcy Lewis, Special Agent Hagen, BAMF Maria Hill, Jane Foster Loves Science, Awesome Pepper Potts, Assistant Darcy Lewis, roadtrip playlists require 90's music, Mad Science, Dubious Science, Explosions, Female Friendship, who needs men?, Alternate Universe - Leverage Fusion, References to Leverage, Awesome Parker (Leverage), Post-Captain America: Civil War (Movie)
notes: Lighthearted cross between a heist movie and a girls' night out.

title: Dreaming Of Dragons
summary: The army doesn’t allow women. The Dragon Corps, however, does.
tags: Peggy Carter & Daniel Sousa & Jack Thompson, Peggy Carter, Daniel Sousa, Jack Thompson, Alternate Universe - Dragons, Alternate Universe - Fantasy, BAMF Peggy Carter, Dragons
notes: I wasn't entirely sure what to expect of this. The title said "The Enchanted Forest" but the summary said "Temeraire" and the story itself is apparently taken from Tamora Pierce's ouvre.

weekend of writing

  • Jul. 9th, 2017 at 9:00 PM
Mostly, I was finishing assignments and writing treats. I got at least one finished, would have liked to get two, but it's kind of complicated.

And the next chapter of the sedoretu fic is done. At this point, I don't care how angsty/angry Natasha is being, I just want this done and out of my head. And now Bucky's up. In more ways than one.

My achilles is once again aching, I've deputised my sister to drop me off at the station tomorrow so I don't have to limp up to the bus stop.

Disfigurement in film: 2 links

  • Jul. 7th, 2017 at 11:21 PM
Ariel Henley writing at Bustle:

As a woman with a facial disfigurement, this Wonder Woman villain pisses me off

This post contains spoilers for the film, and a looping gif. Contains references to WWI and suicide of veterans.

Linked in the above article is this older piece about Bond films:

Why are so many Bond villains disabled or disfigured? I ask the producers

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