[sticky entry] Sticky: Fic Masterlist

Jan. 21st, 2011 01:58 pm
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
Blanket permission: Please feel free to remix, podfic, or really do anything you like with anything I've written. I'd love it if you'd drop me a link when you're done, though.

Whoniverse )

Merlin )

Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire )

Misc. fandoms: Legend of the Seeker, Discworld, Being Human, The West Wing, Warehouse 13, The Queen's Thief, Once Upon a Time )

Crossovers & Fusions )
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
The Monogram Murders - Sophie Hannah
Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover - Sarah MacLean
Say Yes to the Marquess - Tessa Dare
The Secret Place - Tana French


Last month I asked folks here for recommendations as to what I should read on my holidays, I got some excellent recommendations which I dutifully loaded onto my kindle, then, as you do, I bought a paperback in the airport...

Sophie Hannah got permission from the Agatha Christie estate to publish a new Poirot novel, which was... fine. The Monogram Murders is not up there with the likes of Murder on the Orient Express, nor is it as bad as the worst of Dame Agatha's; it's a solid, if unmemorable, Poirot novel. On the plus side, I didn't know who the murderer was until Poirot got all the suspects together in a room, which is a first for me; less because I am good at figuring this stuff out, and more because the David Suchet Poirot series is rerun constantly here, and I usually get about thirty-five pages into any given Agatha Christie before I go: Oh, I know who did it!

File under: reasonably solid published fanfic.

After I'd finished that my hosts kindly loaned me Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover, the latest in a series of regency romances I'd been following. The really, really awesome thing about this book is that Chase, the slightly sinister owner of the gambling hell the books revolve around, turns out to be a woman. And I'd had no idea. A+ pronoun game there. I'm glad I read the paperback instead of the e-book, because I very much enjoyed the picture of the girl in the buckskin trousers on the cover, which I'm told is the first time a regency romance has had a woman in trousers on the cover.

Actually my problem with this book wasn't with the book (which is a perfectly lovely example of its genre) it was with me. As soon as you introduce a crossdressing woman to a story that's the book I want; I wanted an entire book of Georgiana scheming against the ton, and wearing trousers, and wrangling at least three separate identities.

I am completely loving Tessa Dare's Castles Ever After series (very excited for the third one coming out in a couple of months.) In Say Yes to the Marquess our heroine is trying to convince her absentee fiancé's disreputable brother to call off their engagement, the brother is trying to plan them an extravagant wedding, and there is an elderly bulldog; hijinks, and food fights ensue, and it is entirely delightful.

Also, Tessa Dare writes some of the most smoking sex scenes I have ever read, which I was of course reading while my plane descended into Glasgow, and I was sitting next to the sort of Glasgow granny who can sense impure thoughts a mile off.

The thing is, the more I fall into historical romance, the sadder I get that there aren't a bajillion f/f examples of the genre for me to read. I wants it, my precious.

The Secret Place is the latest, and in my opinion the best, installment in the Dublin Murder Squad series. The body of a teenage boy has been found on the grounds of a girls boarding school, and a year later the investigation is reopened.

There's been a reoccurring theme in the series about police partnerships souring and going wrong, and I liked that this one featured an unlikely partnership working out. It's got a really good take on friendships between teenage girls, how they can seem cliquey and claustrophobic from the outside, and be super important to those involved -- it's sort of what I'd wanted The Fever to be and had been disappointed.

There's also -- the more I think about it, perhaps there's always been a thread of magical realism in the series, what with what happened to Rob's childhood friends and what may or may not have been living in Pat's walls. But it's more explicit and yet never addressed here, and I'm not sure how I feel about it.

I have been feeling nostalgic for 90s Star Trek (first fandom!) so I am dipping in and out of the Star Trek: Destiny trilogy. There's obviously an ongoing post-shows book series into which I have plunged heedless of continuity. On the one hand Ezri Dax is a ship captain, which is awesome, and the cast of characters is super diverse, both the human characters, and having really alien aliens; on the other Janeway has been killed off and Paris and Torres broken up, both of which are completely unacceptable. Also, for a trilogy purportedly about a war between the Borg and the Federation, needs more Borg. But mostly, Star Trek!
netgirl_y2k: (fire cannot kill a dragon)
As I think I've said before, I rather enjoyed this last season of Game of Thrones, more than a lot of people seemed to. I shall now proceed to blether on at length about what worked for me, what didn't, and why the former outweighs the latter.

GoT S5, the awesome, the indifferent, and the eye-gougingly stupid )

A Thing

Jun. 16th, 2015 12:20 am
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
I remember being very excited about the idea of a female character centric remix back when it was first mooted a couple of years ago, and I am even more excited now that it's actually happening.

[community profile] femmeremix

Sign-ups are open through Friday, and you only need to have written three 500+ words fics per fandom that are either about a female character or could be remixed to be so. I meet those qualifications in, ahem, a number of fandoms.

The only reason I haven't signed up yet is that I'm thinking of knocking out a quick Agent Carter ficlet or two in order to sign up with that... if anyone has any Agent Carter prompts that they'd like to see dashed off?

It's worth mentioning that I have had some awesome writing experiences remixing folks who write mainly slash, even if my first instinct is to scroll through looking for a fic about a female character to remix. But I'm more leery of being assigned to someone who wants to remix slash and having them go: oh, shite, not her, especially in fandoms like Merlin, where the assumption that your remixee will write predominately dudes is not unreasonable. That shouldn't happen this time; at least, not for that reason.
netgirl_y2k: (panic)
Having been excessively charmed by the trailer, I caved and watched the leaked Supergirl pilot Supergirl )

And I have belatedly seen Mad Max Fury Road )
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
[personal profile] fitz_y and her partner H kindly invited me to stay with them in Berlin for a week, and then even more kindly refrained from dispatching me to the nearest hotel when it turned out they were unexpectedly going to have to move house that week. Such kind people, a kindness I repaid by making several counter productive attempts to help, and then sitting in the corner of their flat, drinking tea and giggling at the unfolding chaos.

Some things I did on my holidays

-Got horribly lost. I was given a free map of the city upon arrival; alas, it transpired to be a map of Prague.

-Drank a lot of beer. Like, an almost alarming amount of beer. Even that weird green one that you think is going to be lime or mint, then turns out to be some forest herb thing.

-Almost melted away to a wee greasy spot; I seem to have the knack for landing in Berlin during the annual heatwave. At least I didn't keel over from heatstroke in the food court of the KaDeWe this time.

-Stumbled across the fan park for the Champions League final at the Brandenburg Gate. Was befriended by some Spaniards who made me solemnly swear to support Barcelona.

-Relatedly, H was a very good egg about accompanying me when I decided that I wanted to watch the game live, and watch it in some terrifying east German gambling den. It was awesome, even if we did come home reeking of beer and gambling and clove cigarettes.

-Finally got to the East Side Gallery, which was pretty cool, although people were actually graffiting it while I watched; Justin was here is truly a message for the ages.

-Meant to go out to Sachsenhausen, but got distracted by beer, and football, and Spaniards. Did go to the Jewish History Museum, which is desperately, desperately sad, and the building is a work of genius with all these empty spaces and off-kilter floors keeping you off-balance; you can say a lot with architecture, I think.

-Drank more beer. Got particularly fond of Flensburger.

-Did a lot of ordering by pointing, and then consuming whatever totally unrelated thing was handed to me. The language options at my school were German, French, and Latin; for reasons I can no longer recall I did Latin. Was dispatched to an English language cafe for the afternoon; attempted to flirt with a waitress, and forgot how to say 'flat white', not even in German, I just forgot how to use words; oh the shame.

-Ate at the most famous kebab stand and the most famous burger stall in all of Berlin; at least I assume the burger place was famous, I can see no other reason why people would eat bugers out of a converted public toilet; I am a classy lady.

-Watched the latest episode of Game of Thrones with [personal profile] fitz_y and H, with us all chanting "Ride it! Ride it! Ride it!" at the final scene like we were watching some particularly enthusiastic yet inept pornography.

Actually, expect a big long post about this series of Game of Thrones when I get back into the swing of internetting, because it has been making me feel feelings, and hardly any of them the angry ones that most of my fannish circle seems to be feeling.
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
So You've Been Publicly Shamed - Jon Ronson
Them: Adventures with Extremists - Jon Ronson
Stasiland: Stories from Behind the Berlin Wall - Anna Funder
The Creation of Anne Boleyn - Susan Bordo
Voyage of the Basilisk: A Memoir by Lady Trent - Marie Brennan


It turns out that what's really good for getting me back into reading more is actually having a dedicated e-reader rather than trying to read on the kindle app on my tablet (tumblr is a ridiculous timesuck, News at Eleven!)

I find Jon Ronson's pop journalism immensely readable and really enjoyed his latest, So You've Been Publicly Shamed, about public shaming in the digital age, and what it means now that there's no longer really such a thing as it'll all be tomorrow's chip wrapping. I had lot of natural sympathy with Ronson's view that call out culture had started from a place of good intentions and great justice (his example was people's reaction to Jan Muir's horrible, homophobic article about Stephen Gately's death; I suppose a fandom equivalent might be race fail) and has since migrated to a place of willful misunderstandings and unwillingness to let people move on.

I went back and read Them, where Ronson embeds himself with extremists of various stripes and discovers that they all believe in a secret cabal of powerful people running the world, even if they disagree about who exactly is in that cabal. This has... not aged well. It was researched and written in the late 90s, and you can sort of tell that it predates constant, easy access to the internet because a lot of Ronson's investigations/misadventures could have been rendered moot by five minutes on google.

I was very young when the Berlin Wall came down, and I remember seeing the images on TV but not really having any idea of what was going on or why, and like all products of the British eduction system almost everything I knew about Germany was in relation to WWII. So although I've been to Berlin twice (I'm going again on Wednesday, actually; I think it's a brilliant city) and done all the usual tourist things I still didn't know much about the rational behind the Wall or life in the GDR. So in a fit of belated intellectual curiosity I read Stasiland which was brilliantly researched and written, and fascinating, and awful. Recommended.

The central premise of The Creation Anne Boleyn is that portrayals of Anne Boleyn throughout history owe less to any historical fact and more to the prevailing social norms at the time; which is an argument that I, at least, find difficult to argue with. It's a cultural history that moves from Anne the historical figure, to Anne the patron saint of the reformation/villainess in chief in the Protestant/Catholic culture wars, to Anne the fictional character up through The Tudors, to Anne Boleyn online 'fandom'.

As much as I agreed with the author's premise, and as much as it was really, really interesting as a cultural history I did have... niggles. I'm not sure the editing was great (my point of view when it comes to editing, btw, is that if I notice it, it's probably not great) with lots of arguments, indeed entire paragraphs, repeated almost verbatim. There's lots of criticising other historians for not questioning unreliable sources (mainly Chapuys' letters), or speculating without making it clear that that's what they're doing, then turning around and doing the same thing herself. There's also some attacks on historians and writers who've tackled Anne; I've never read Phillipa Gregory, and I know that a lot of people hate her writing, but the attack on her felt weirdly vitriolic; I objected less to her digs at David Starkey whose documentaries have always had an unpleasant veneer of sexism for me. Anyway, interesting but flawed.

The Voyage of the Basilisk was the only fiction I read this month (non-fiction can be really good for getting out of a reading slump, I find) and in this installment our pseudo-Victorian lady dragon naturalist rides sea monsters and gains a love interest. If you're not already on this ride then I highly recommend you hop on; it is so much fun!

*

As previously mentioned I am off on my holidays later this week, to Berlin, no less, which is awesome because huzzah, holiday! and because it means I get to hang out with the awesome [personal profile] fitz_y and her equally awesome partner. But is less than awesome because it means I have to get on a plane. I... do not fly well. I have strategies in place for getting me through flights:

1. Have an extremely large Gin & Tonic in the airport.
2. Pretend I'm not going. I'm not going to get on a plane; I am, for unrelated reasons, going to fill this suitcase with a week's worth of clothes and toiletries. I'm not going, of course, and the fact that I've booked a taxi to the airport doesn't mean that I am. I'm not going; I am going to join this queue at security, though, because I'm British and it is a queue... and so on and so forth until the plane is taxing down the runway.
3. Have a book to read on the plane that is so engrossing that I forget that I'm however many miles up in the air and not just on the high speed train to Aberdeen.

Does anybody know of such a book? Seriously, though, a total page-turner, or the sort of book you just vanish inside, or both? A book to see off an incipient panic attack, if that's not too much to ask. Any genres, fiction, non-fiction, anything?
netgirl_y2k: (gwen beer)
-Tumblr always makes me feel like an old fandom lady, never more so than when it took my dash about forty-eight hours to go from doing cartwheels about Agent Carter's renewal, to panicking about the change of setting for S2 and the possibility of Haley Atwell being the only returning cast member. I don't know-- well, nobody knows. It could be brilliant, if they're doing a time skip then we're into early fifties Hollywood which is pretty cool. It could well be that I was right the first time, in my failure to have much time for the MCU, and Agent Carter S1 was just a brief, glorious aberration. Either way, I don't have it in me to worry.

Plus, I came to Agent Carter via Merlin (which crashed and burned into a toxic mess of misogyny, bitterness, and resentment), Doctor Who (which at the very least teaches us not to fear change), and the endless, endless bloody sniping in ASOIAF/Game of that's your adaption choice? So I think I have earned my slightly condescending Oh, you sweet summer children moment.

-Speaking of Game of Thrones, my overwhelming reaction to S5 continues to be: I understand why you made these adaptation choices, I don't necessarily agree with you with you about all of them, and I think in a few cases your execution leaves a lot to be desired. But my ambivalence is mostly drowned out by my gratitude that you're moving the story along before I was forced to perform a one woman reenactment of the Get On With It! crowd scene from Holy Grail.

And from episode five we learned Kill The Boy )

- I have signed up for remix, and I think other people should too. There's no qualifying fandoms this year, which I like, because I always thought they skewed towards old, slashy fandoms and locked people into offering fandoms they were otherwise pretty much done with. But I'll be interested to see how matching shakes out, and if it actually changes what people are writing that much.

See, this is what happens when you grow old in fandom, you start noticing changes in fandom trends, which is a highly specific and difficult to explain hobby.
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
Shadow Scale - Rachel Hartman
Fair Fight - Anna Freeman


Shadow Scale is the sequel to Seraphina, about a half dragon girl caught between a coming war between humans and dragons. I didn't like it quite so much as the first one; this is partly grading on a curve because I freakin' adored the first one, partly that the first half of the novel follows Seraphina as she travels around trying to find the other half dragons, and quest narratives do very little for me. I also wasn't thrilled about a wild love triangle appearing. I mean, I loved that Glisselda isn't straight (called it!) and that she and Kiggs went through with their marriage of political convenience. But I wasn't wild about Glisselda turning out to be in love with Seraphina, and if that kiss was meant to be an implication that Seraphina isn't straight herself and they're going to come to some sort of poly understanding it could have stood to be less... wishy washy. I still wonder if the decision to market the books as YA was made at a comparatively late stage, because the characters all seem to have been written as 3-5 years older than their stated ages; it would explain the pasted on love triangle, and vagueness of its conclusion too. I like that it is a duology (everything is a bloody trilogy these days) but I do wonder if it wouldn't have stood up better as one slightly longer volume.

Don't get me wrong, I did like them, and I do recommend them. I think Rachel Hartman did a bang up job with a premise that could very easily have veered into 'sparkling vampires' territory. I just liked the first one better.

Fair Fight is a historical novel set in Victorian England featuring three revolving POVs; Ruth, a boxer raised in a brothel, Charlotte an upperclass miss who is married beneath her station and forms an unlikely friendship with Ruth, and George a manipulative dandy who's involved in a long standing relationship with Charlotte's brother. You know how when you have a book with rotating POVs there's usually one where you go 'oh, not you again', but here I found all three characters compelling, and sympathetic, and repulsive in very different but equally fascinating ways.

I absolutely fell in love with this book, and I usually find boxing a bit... distasteful, but I absolutely loved it. It was a bit like The Crimson Petal and the White, a bit like Fingersmith, and a bit like Life Mask. Highly recommended.

Two thirds of the way through and I think I'll abandon The Secret History of the Pink Carnation. It's a play on the Scarlet Pimpernel and the first real dud of my stroll through historical romance; a bland plucky by the numbers heroine, and equally bland former rake with a heart of gold hero. And maybe it's because of the royal baby has been all over the news this week, but every time the heroine started talking about restoring the monarchy my grumpy inner republican (small r) reared her head.

*

I've got the election coverage on in the background. Hmm, if the exit polls are right Scotland should have taken independence when it was on the cards. I'm probably not going to stay up much longer, but before I go to bed have a story of the these people don't vote, do they? variety.

My sister is a doctor. An actual medical, dammit, Jim, I'm a doctor not a... doctor. She is a clever lady. She also wanted to vote Green today. I'd voted in the morning and texted her to say that there wasn't a Green standing where we live. We live in a Labour/SNP marginal, our Labour incumbent is a wanker and Dr. Sister hates the SNP. I assumed she'd hold her nose and vote Lib Dem, or spoil her ballot.

Instead - and again this woman is a doctor - she voted for an independent who she knew nothing about on the assumption that he was one of the harmless save-our-hills, save-our-hospital type independents. She went home and googled him; turns out he's a loon of the radical right, who got kicked out of UKIP for being too reactionary, and whose main platform is the reestablishment of the British Empire.

I've never been the brains of the family before; I don't like it.
netgirl_y2k: (panic)
-It was my birthday on Monday. I am now 32. I am very confused as to how this happened as I was 19, like, five minutes ago.

-I took myself off to see Age of Ultron, which was entertaining in the same way a fireworks display is entertaining, in that there were bright colours, loud noises, and explosions, and like a fireworks display, by the two hour mark I was starting to wonder what was happening back in the pub.

Bear in mind that I haven't read a comic book in my life, and there are huge swathes of the MCU I am still unfamiliar with, so maybe it made more sense to others.

A list of things I didn't understand about Age of Ultron )

On the plus side, my lack of familiarity with the wider universe meant that any continuity or characterisation snafus that may have irked other people sailed right over my head.

A list of things I liked about Age of Ultron )

-Not unrelatedly, I very much enjoyed the recent Daredevil series, which I think benefited from notionally being in the MCU, but mostly being off in its own corner doing its own thing, so unlike Agents of SHIELD, and to lesser extent Agent Carter, it doesn't get tangled up in the continuity of the wider universe.

-Also, I am a great believer that a good cure for writer's block is to write something really ridiculous and self indulgent, so on that note here is an Agent Carter soulmate AU:

Because Girls Love Girls and Boys
Agent Carter; Peggy/Angie; 3233 words

Howard Stark and his bloody inventions.

(In which Peggy Carter has excellent teeth, the name Steven G. Rogers written on her skin, and Angie Martinelli.)

AO3 Meme

Apr. 19th, 2015 08:15 pm
netgirl_y2k: (bo & Kenzi huh)
I enjoy both talking about my fic, and watching short columns of numbers doing things slowly, so of course I enjoy that meme where you list your top ten A03 fics and wonder about them.

Top Ten by Hits
1. The Care and Feeding of Tiny Humans (and slightly larger Time Lords) (14060 hits; Doctor Who; Eleven & tiny Amelia)
2. Here Be Dragons (13085 hits; Merlin/Temeraire fusion; Morgana & Aithusa)
3. Every Rose Has a Thorn (and even tame wolves bite) (9021 hits; ASOIAF; Sansa/Margaery)
4. Keep the Bouquets, Throw Away the Grooms (6898 hits; Game of Thrones; Sansa/Margaery, arranged marriage)
5. Living Arrangements (5983 hits; Agent Carter; Peggy/Angie)
6. The Women Kings (5947 hits; Game of Thrones; Sansa/Margaery)
7. Those Who Favour Fire (5766 hits; Game of Thrones; Sansa/Cersei, Sansa/Dany)
8. They Will Crown You, They Will Take Your Legs (5627 hits; Game of Thrones; Dany/Doreah)
9. War Is Easier Than Daughters (5215 hits; Game of Thrones; girl!Jon Snow)
10. Practice Makes Perfect (4579 hits; Game of Thrones; Sansa/Margaery, high school AU)

Top Ten by Kudos
1. Living Arrangements (1029 kudos; Agent Carter; Peggy/Angie)
2. The Care and Feeding of Tiny Humans (and slightly larger Time Lords) (767 kudos; Doctor Who; Eleven & wee Amelia)
3. Keep the Bouquets, Throw Away the Grooms (660 kudos; Game of Thrones; Sansa/Margaery, arranged marriage)
4. Practice Makes Perfect (411 kudos; Game of Thrones; Sansa/Margaery, high school AU)
5. Everything But the Kitchen Sink (409 kudos; Doctor Who; Eleven & dalek!Oswin)
6. Every Rose Has a Thorn (and even tame wolves bite) (399 kudos; ASOIAF; Sansa/Margaery)
7. The Women Kings (366 kudos; Game of Thrones; Sansa/Margaery)
8. The Game of Courtship (268 kudos; ASOIAF; Sansa/Margaery)
9. Those Who Favour Fire (262 kudos; Game of Thrones; Sansa/Cersei, Sansa/Dany)
10. The Sides and All the Corners (228 kudos; Once Upon a Time; Belle/Ruby)

-I never thought that anything, ever, would garner more kudos than The Care and Feeding of Tiny Humans, which is my fandom claim to fame, as it were.
-I suppose that's the difference between anything MCU adjacent and all other fandoms ever since the heyday of Harry Potter.
-Happily, I do think Living Arrangements is a bit good, and now I wish I'd bothered to come up with a better title for it.
-I assume there's some sort of bot thing going on with Here Be Dragons, because thirteen thousand hits for a gen fusion about the female villain and a one ep guest star, wtf?
-I am oddly gratified that inexplicable bot activity not withstanding, and despite my having written nearly twice as many Merlin fics as anything else, there is no Merlin on either of these lists, not even my M/A remixes. Hurrah!
-I find it interesting that my Game of Thrones fic - or fic written early enough in the life of the show that you could still use both tags in good conscience - seems to be more popular than my ASOIAF fic, even though I think my book fic is better, and I had always thought that the book fandom was bigger. Just louder maybe?
-Sansa/Margaery is still a very popular pairing even though they haven't interacted since mis-S3 and likely never will again. Gosh, I love fandom sometimes.
netgirl_y2k: (winter is coming)
I accidentally watched the four leaked episodes of Game of Thrones. I shall now proceed to wait for episode five like some kind of medieval peasant.

I know people were very nervous of some of the S5 spoilers, and S4 was, to be fair, shite, but I was pleasantly surprised by the first half of S5.

GoT 5x1-5x4 )
netgirl_y2k: (cersei fuck)
- The latest victim my puppy's need to chew everything she can get her little jaws around is the muzzle purchased specifically to stop her from destroying shit. She is the bestest puppy in the world in all other ways; repeat slowly ten times and take a shot.

- I fell headfirst into an 80k Amazing Spider-Man fic where Gwen Stacey is Spider Man (it's Maggie Fitzgerald and the Saltwater Drip, and it's practically perfect in every way.) And now I wish that there was an AO3 tag for a secondary female character gets the main dude's abilities or arc, only not just with the names find and replaced, because I want to read all of them. Actually, the fic I want most of all is the one where Peggy Carter gets the super soldier serum, either as a take on Cap or the Winter Soldier, I could go either way.

- My fic for this round of got_exchange was a play on the fact that a key step on the road to the Iron Throne seems to be marrying Margaery Tyrell. It took me an embarrassingly long time to wrangle, especially considering that it's only really one scene. I don't know whether to put that, and my lack of excitement about either S5 or the Sansa teaser chapter, down to my weasel induced off feeling of the last wee while, or as a sign that I'm coming to the end of my fannishness about ASOIAF. Anyway...


The Proposition
Game of Thrones; Margaery Tyrell/Daenerys Targaryen; PG; 1884 words

And I'd be your queen?

Queen consort, I'd thought. The title's negotiable.
netgirl_y2k: (kahlan white dress)
Karen Memory - Elizabeth Bear

Only one book finished this month, and it was one I started in February. Karen Memory should have been the stuff of my id; the central romance was f/f, the central relationships were all among women, a group of mutually supportive sex workers, no less. But, I don't know, the pacing was a little borked, I thought, there never seemed to be a sense of narrative urgency and the various subplots never really came together. There was also the fact that it was steampunk; now, it's not that I don't like steampunk, it's just that I haven't read a whole lot of it. I remember reading a great thing a while ago that in any genres or sub-genres there are the introductory texts (usually some of the first ones written, or those that play the genre straight), then the intermediary texts (those that build on what's come before, and start to play with the established tropes of the genre), etc. And because I haven't read much steampunk I think I've missed a step or twelve between 'what if technology was developed along steam rather than electric lines..?' and 'and then our heroine attacked a nineteenth century submarine with an ambulatory sewing machine.' It was less the book, and more my not being the right kind of genre-savvy. I do think the pacing was dodgy, though.

I dipped in and out of few different Discworld books in memory of Terry Pratchett, but I couldn't settle to read anything straight through.

Actually, I've been feeling a bit twitchy and off all month. Revenge of the Brain Weasels, I guess, which is annoying, because I have been so much better for so long now. Still, I am so much better at managing my anxiety than I used to be - for one thing, anthropomorphising it as playful weasels nibbling at loose wires inside my head has been hugely helpful.

So because it only ever takes me one really good read to yank me out of a book slump, I ask: read any good books lately? Any genres at all, fiction or non-fiction (actually non-fiction might be quite good for my attention span currently), but really anything at all that you've enjoyed or found attention grabbing?
netgirl_y2k: (kahlan white dress)
I was playing an askbox game over on tumblr, about female characters screwed over by their narratives and how I would have fixed it. And as this is a subject I can talk about at, ahem, some length I thought I'd repost my answers here.

Morgana (Merlin) )

Gwen (Merlin) )

Shae (GoT) )

Ros (GoT) )

Sansa Stark (GoT) )

Donna Noble (Doctor Who) )
netgirl_y2k: (gwen beer)
-"I really think having the dog is doing me the world of good, I've got bags more energy," I said, while playing keepie-uppie with a squeaky tennis ball by myself in the living room, and immediately before indulging in a ridiculous fantasy about me and the closing moments of a Champions League final that saw me hoofing the ball across the room and into the television.

I can't even blame the dog for this one, as I'd sent her to the vet to be neutered, and at the time she was lying in her crate, wearing a cone of shame, and staring at me with a look of abject betrayal and resentment.

-Speaking of betrayals of fledgling trust, I was a wee bit dismayed that the series finale of Call the Midwife was taken straight out of the Big Book of Tragic Lesbian Cliches (especially after Last Tango in Halifax; that's two otherwise stellar BBC shows that have pulled this same nonsense in however many months. Do they have a quota to meet?)

After Delia rode off on Patsy's bicycle I didn't even manage to get out the full sentence, "I bet she's about to be hit by a car", before she was hit by a car.

I go to my Mum and Dad's on Sundays for tea, too, and then spend the evening watching telly with them, so I found myself trying to explain the sad lesbian cliche to two people who mentally find and replace the word lesbian with the word goldfish in all conversation.

-Because I don't really go to the pictures anymore, and because I've been such a naysayer on the superhero genre, I'm only now really catching up on the MCU, horrifically out of order, and just as and when they happen to cross my path. I didn't think there would be a wrong way to watch comic book movies, but I think I've found it.

One of the reasons that even the big bombshell moment of Agents of SHIELD S1 did nothing for me was that I didn't know what Hydra was or why being part of it was bad. So I watched The Winter Soldier, and that explained that (although I now retroactively resent AoS for squandering the destruction of SHIELD plot) but I was going, "Hang on, the chap in all the eye makeup asks a good question: who the hell is Bucky?" So just last week I watched the first Captain America movie, but I think I missed the boat, because I'd already seen all of Agent Carter and I was mostly just confused as to why there wasn't more Peggy in Peggy Carter's origin story.

-I have thankfully aged out of strange men coming up to me on the bus and asking what I'm reading. I used to put them off by telling them, in great detail; nobody likes an evangelist. But I looked up from my much thumbed Guards! Guards! paperback at the weekend and found a lad grinning at me over a battered copy of Hogfather.

So we spent a nice commute talking about Pratchett's death, and Pratchett's Death, and our favourite Discworld books, and when I said, "I have to go, this is my stop," it was because it actually was my stop, and not because I was planning to get off and wait for the next bus.

So Terry Pratchett died, and that's terribly sad, but two strangers passed a pleasant half hour of human connection over their shared love of his work, which is not bad.

-The annual Scotland - England Calcutta Cup match was played this weekend gone. During the pre-match coverage the music the BBC chose to play over clips of previous clashes between the sides was The Rains of Castamere.

Fitting really; not just for the Calcutta Cup, but for Scotland's performance this entire Six Nations. Not so much The Lannisters Send Their Regards, as All Of Europe Sends Its Regards, Again.

-Because I am exactly the sort of weirdo that is fascinated by AO3 statistics, and likes to watch columns of numbers slowly climb upwards, I was sort of interesting to see that the Peggy/Angie fic I wrote a month ago is now my most kudosed fic, eclipsing The Care and Feeding of Tiny Humans which has been my most popular story (by several orders of magnitude) since I first joined the A03.

From this I am taking the following: 1) the MCU, even the femslash-y spin-off bit, is a freakish outlier in terms of kudos, 2) correctly predicting a series endgame will buy you a certain amount of attention due to sheer novelty value.

Also, I would not do well in a m/m juggernaut because I don't think I could cope with that amount of people looking at me (another reason, of course, is that I think people can tell when you are writing for kudos and not for joy).

-Speaking of writing for joy, I have become weirdly fascinated with the soulmate mark trope recently. Like, if I were going to write another Peggy/Angie fic right now it would be a soulmate AU (of the I'm your soulmate, and you're not mine, but if you can get over that I'd like to try and make this work variety). Or there's the Sansa/Margaery one where it's not your soulmate's name or first words that appear on your skin, but their house sigil, and both Sansa and Margaery have a lot of brothers.

I am a ridiculous person, I know.
netgirl_y2k: (winter is coming)
Puppy, free to a good home
Puppy, free to a home
Puppy, free

I jest. But, man, my dog is growing up to be an asshole dog.

She has ridden in the car since she was tiny with no problems. This weekend she very quietly and industriously managed to chew her way through two seatbelts, pull the plastic moulding off from over the lights, and chew through the wires - shorting out my rear lights and giving herself an electric shock.

You would think this would have discouraged her from chewing. It did not. Sometimes of an evening, if I'm reading or watching telly, the puppy will lie sleeping under the side table. Except it turns out that she hasn't been sleeping. What she has been doing is very sneakily gnawing her way right through one of the table legs. Which I discovered one night when I'd put the dog in her crate and gone to bed myself, and was woken by a humungous crash which was the table giving out under the weight and crashing to the ground.

That was the closest she came to being given away since she was tiny and she bit right through my earlobe. That's something that they don't tell you about puppies - that you will spend your first few weeks with this adorable little ball of fuzz that you have acquired with the express intention of loving to bits, you will spend those first few weeks being eaten by inches and looking worriedly sideways at your new best friend going, this animal is evil, and clearly harbors ill-will towards me.

I have been and purchased her a tiny muzzle for car rides. It's ridiculous - I have this tiny, waggy tailed puppy with a muzzle and a metal chain lead (after she chewed straight through three fabric ones), the sort you would expect to see on, like, vicious guard dogs.

We were out for a walk the other week, and we met someone with a tiny little spaniel puppy. Tiny little thing it was, all wide eyed and frightened on its first day out - and Freya sat on it. Just plonked herself right down on top of it, wagged her tail, and looked up as if to say, only pay attention to me.

Proper little asshole she is. Ah, well, she's off to be fixed next week - it's that time; I think I've met every boy dog in a six mile radius - so she'll have a richly deserved cone of shame.

It's worth mentioning that, by and large, Freya is growing into a cracking little dog. Affectionate and (mostly) obedient and playful, and all that jazz. And sometimes asshole pets are the best pets, because you think that no one will ever love them and all their asshole ways the way you will.
netgirl_y2k: (fire cannot kill a dragon)
If you could have me write a fic specifically for you, what would it be like? Fandom, characters/pairing, genre, plot elements, kinks (if applicable)... what's your ideal fic from me?
netgirl_y2k: (panic)
Dead Girl Walking - Christopher Brookmyre
The Unquiet Dead - Ausma Zehanat Khan
Faithful Place - Tana French
Broken Harbor - Tana French


All thrillers this month, for a change of pace.

Dead Girl Walking I was really excited about, because the last Jack Parlabane book came out, like, five years ago, and it's one of my favourite series. It's not Brookmyre's best title; nothing will ever beat Attack of the Unsinkable Rubber Ducks in my book.

It wouldn't surprise me if this was the last Jack Parlabane book; the way a lot of characters from previous books made what seemed like a finale farewell appearance, and the way Brookmyre, who's always seemed to be a pretty socially conscious writer, seems to have accepted that in this day and age you can't have your protagonist be a journalist who uses, ahem, extra legal methods and still pretend he's the hero. I do kind of admire writers who know when to retire a series, though.

Anyway, it was good; I enjoyed the central mystery, involving an awesome lesbian rock star, her violinist sort of girfriend, and a sex trafficking ring. But it's probably not the best place to jump into the series, more a fond farewell to some long established characters.

The Unquiet Dead, on the other hand, is the first in a series; actually, I think it's the author's first book. You can sort of tell; the pacing's not great, and the conclusion is spoiler )

It's a Canadian set murder mystery where the victim very quickly turns out to be connected to the Bosnian war; and the narrative is split between the investigation and flashbacks to the genocide. The thing that really elevates this book and makes it worth reading is that the author is apparently an international human rights lawyer who was involved in the war crimes trials and really knows her stuff; the chapter headings are taken from the statements of survivors, which adds poignancy to the whole thing.

I'd almost given up on the Dublin Murder Squad books after The Likeness. My problem with that book was the idea of a murder victim who was so the spitting image of an undercover detective that the detective could move in with her housemates for weeks on end without raising any eyebrows completely shattered my suspension of disbelief.

Thankfully the next two books in the series hew a bit closer to reality. Faithful Place is about a twenty year old cold case and a dysfunctional family, and Broken Harbor is about a family massacre and the early days of the recession in Ireland.

As much as I'm enjoying Tana French's patented blend of ambiguous endings and strangely dislikable yet compelling protagonist, I'm taking a break from the thrillers for a while, and I'm halfway through Elizabeth Bear's Karen Memory, which so far contains a steampunk version of the American goldrush, a group of friendly prostitutes, a central f/f relationship, and an evil mind control machine, and I'm absolutely freakin' loving it!

Only four books this month, but February is a short month, plus I fell into an Agent Carter fanfic shaped whole. I couldn't help it... Peggy/Angie is like the friends-to-lovers sprinkled coffee shop AU x spy AU of my heart.

Anyway, here are some recs for fics I have especially enjoyed.

Griffith House Rules by [archiveofourown.org profile] The-Stephanois Five times Angie heard noises coming from Peggy's apartment and the one time she caused them.

take a look at what i found by [archiveofourown.org profile] likebrightness Peggy knocks before she can think better of it. Hopes Angie wakes up before Miss Fry does.

After the Applause by [archiveofourown.org profile] tartanfics Angie doesn't have anyone waiting for her out in the audience. She didn't get to tell Peggy she finally got a part in a show; Peggy wasn't there to tell. She ran lines with Sarah from 4A. There's been not a word from Peggy, nothing, after Angie went to all the trouble of calling up her family and finding Peggy a way out of the city.

The Scheme of Things by [archiveofourown.org profile] QuickYoke Angie manages to cross the pond to England during the last years of the War. But she soon finds that helping with the war effort isn't all that cracked up to be.

wake up where the clouds are far behind me by [archiveofourown.org profile] ProfessorSpork Angie’s lips are half-cocked in a smirk but the eyebrows give her away, lifted in poorly-masked concern. “Still not sure what kinda errand needs doing on the Brooklyn Bridge alone at this hour. You sure you’re done, Pegs?” That’s the question, isn’t it?

Semi-related. I have a blanket permission to podfic statement tucked away somewhere on AO3, which I quite often forget all about until someone takes me up on it.

And [archiveofourown.org profile] reena_jenkins took me up on it and podifcced Living Arrangements.

Now, I don't often listen to podfic of my own stuff all the way through. Not because I don't love that people record it, because I absolutely do, but because as soon as I'm listening to it all I can hear is my weird word choices and awkward sentence structures. But this I listened to all the way through. Twice. Reena's reading is so good that she managed to make me forget I'd written it.
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
I didn't get to watch the Agent Carter finale until just now. It's not being shown over here (boo, hiss!) and as the UK is turning into Big Brother on the internet censorship front, watching anything suspiciously foreign has become a total pain in the arse.

One upshot of this is that I have been watching a lot more UK telly. This should really be a whole other post, but in short: The Wolf Hall adaptation is wonderful; The The Casual Vacancy one less so; Broadchurch probably didn't need a second series, no, but it beat the hell out of yet another repeat of Midsomer Murders, and Call The Midwife is Sunday evening telly at its very finest.

The other upshot is that it turns out there were a lot of US shows I was only watching out of habit and didn't mind dropping (Once Upon a Time) and the ones I do want to keep up with (Elementary, The Good Wife) do get shown here, albeit weeks or months after their original airings, but they're not shows where I'm in the fandom, so I don't feel like I need to stay current to keep up with the conversation.

But Agent Carter, oh, Agent Carter. It had its flaws, and I'm not blind to them, but to me it was worth every second of swearing at my elderly macbook and wrangling VPNs.

I was actually slightly spoiled for the finale by opening my e-mail this morning to discover, like, six comments on my lone Agent Carter fic going HOW DID YOU KNOW?

Teeny spoiler )

Speaking of that fic, I'm actually kind of sorry that I can't get it together fannishly with the rest of the MCU, because not that I write fic for validation, and if I did, boy, would I be writing the wrong sort of fic, mostly, but damn, that there was some nice validation.

Agent Carter finale )
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
My one, and likely only, sidestep into anything Marvel related has probably ruined me forever for puttering about in more moderately sized fandoms.

Living Arrangements
Agent Carter; Peggy Carter/Angie Martinelli; PG; 3414 words

Angie almost says, I think Peggy and me are basically married, and I don't think she's noticed, just to see the look on Jarvis's face.

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netgirl_y2k: (Default)
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