netgirl_y2k: (panic)
We all have those shows that we love that were cancelled before their time: one of mine was The Bletchley Circle about former Bletchley Park code breakers who get caught up in a murder investigation. It only had about half-a-dozen or so episodes all in; the first series was entirely, utterly perfect, the shine had come off the second somewhat, but it was still good and didn't deserve to be cancelled. So I was delighted when I heard it was getting revived for a semi-reboot with half the original cast: The Bletchley Circle: San Francisco.

They've aired four episodes of it, and guys, it is not good. It feels really thin and cheap, which I suppose shouldn't be a surprise as it was made by a US channel that barely exists yet. Not to mention that 1950s Britain was a very different world from '50s California, and that could have been fodder for a good fish out of water story. Instead it just felt like they'd taken characters from one genre and dumped them wholesale into another; like they've taken the characters from Game of Thrones and deposited them into, idk, Altered Carbon without explanation.

And the writing was -- okay, the original show hasn't been on any streaming service I have, so I haven't rewatched it in years, and I'm probably remembering it through rose-tinted glasses, but I remember it being better written than this. It wasn't even just that the mysteries weren't well plotted, though they aren't. There's an especially baffling scene scene where Jean exits the frame and the camera lingers on the walking stick she's left behind - because people often move to one of the hilliest cities in the world only to discover that they no longer need their mobility aids. And, like, the show aired a handful of episodes that hardly anyone watched six years ago - no one can remember whether Jean walked with a cane or not. If you don't want her to walk with a stick just don't give her a stick.

And, okay, the first iteration of the show never explicitly said that Millie wasn't straight, even though she'd obviously been in at least unrequited love with Susan during the war, and she was one of those female characters who fetch up on historical dramas (Patsy on Call the Midwife is the example that comes instantly to mind) where every lesbian watching immediately goes: one of us! one of us! one of us! So I was always going to side eye the choice to hook Millie up with the blandest tertiary male character in the history of bland tertiary male characters. But I took some comfort from the fact that they seemed to be dropping some hints that Jean might not be straight - there was a subtle as a brick through a window line about her being a confirmed spinster.

There was a weird-ass bit at the end of the last episode which intercut the canon married couple with Millie and her cardboard policeman date, and with Jean and Hailey having a fireside picnic on the beach and going skinny dipping in the pacific. Hailey is the youngest of our new code breakers, although she seems to be more of a mechanic because I don't even know what this show is trying to do or be. And, like, it was the most 'Harold, they're lesbians...' scene I have seen in ages. And yet I have seen television before; I know that the show's oldest and frumpiest styled character is not going to be written into a romantic subplot with a borderline teenager. So were they fucking with us, are they so painfully heterosexual that it didn't occur to them that other people might read it as romantic, or is it just holy bad editing, batman? Having seen the rest of the show I'm going to say a little of column b, a little of column c.

By the way, none of that is diminishing my desire to write fic where Hailey is actively pursuing Jean, and Jean is being baffled and Scottish and Presbyterian about it.
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
I'm apparently not the only one who noticed that those other AO3 memes draw attention to outliers (Living Arrangements is an outlier and ought not to have been counted.) So here is a different meme that is meant to be a little more representative, a little more... average.

Average Word Count: 2285
Average Hits Count: 2741
Average No. of Kudos: 211
Average No. of Comment Threads: 10
Average No. of Bookmarks: 39 (I can only assume that most of these are private notes to self saying 'don't read anything by this author again, she's weird and doesn't know how to use semi-colons.)

Work(s) closest to the average word count:

So, the closest is The Trouble with Witches (at least the evil get to go home early on Fridays) at 2288 words. It's a Merlin fic featuring neither Merlin nor Arthur, where Morgana fucks off out of Camelot to undergo personality rehabilitation under the purview of a baby dragon and benevolent ruling queen.

Pretty fucking representative, I'd say.

Work(s) closest to the average hit count:

Abu el Banat at 2769 hits, an ASOIAF fic about Oberyn and his daughters. Not at all representative of me because it's about a dude, but simultaneously extremely representative of me because even when a fic is about a dude it's about the women around him.

And it's a little further out at 2684 hits, but How to Ruin Your Life and Disappoint Your Loved Ones is an ASOIAF fic where Lyanna lives and is the one to rebel against the mad king, Elia lives to be queen on the iron throne, and Sansa Stark is the heir to Winterfell, and it might be the most me fic I have ever written.

Work(s) closest to the average no. of kudos:

(If You're Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To at 214 kudos. It's a Margaery/Brienne modern political bodyguard AU, where Margaery is pretty fucking gay, and Brienne is pretty fucking awkward.

Pretty fucking me, yes?

Work(s) closest to the average no. of comment threads:

I used to feel like 10 was on the unrealistic end of average comments, but ifYoung Hearts (the dangerous book for girls remix) a Merlin No Boys Allowed Hogwarts AU that sank like a stone when it was first posted can get to 10 comment threads over time then maybe it is accurate after all.

I think comment culture is the huge difference between fandom in the days of LJ and fandom now; back then you got all the comments you were going to get in the first 24 hours, now I'll only get a couple of comments the first day but they'll continue to trickle in forever.

Now things sit on AO3 long enough to find their audience. I've found my audience! That audience is ten people! And that's awesome!

Work(s) closest to the average no. of bookmarks:

Spot on at 39 bookmarks is Schrodinger's Simulation, a Root/Shaw fixit that continues to tread my well worn tracks of Hey, That Lady You Thought Was Dead, She's Not Dead, Don't Think About It Too Hard.

Well...those were certainly some representative fics.

Telly

Aug. 2nd, 2018 11:05 pm
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
I watched five episodes of the second season of Westworld, and then went: um, I'm not sure slogging through another five hours of this is going to clarify anything for me. I guess I shall let it live on in my mind forever as a one season wonder.

I hope the second season of Killing Eve is close to as good as the first, because the first was perfect in every way. I think I feel about Killing Eve the way my friends who liked Hannibal felt about that show - Hannibal was not a show I could ever watch; partly because of too many dudes on the dance floor, but mostly because I am far too squeamish for it. I was once walking the dog while listening to a podcast where they were talking about Hannibal and I had to stop and sit down on a park bench with my head between my knees. Killing Eve has the push-pull without the gross out stuff.

The second season of The Handmaid's Tale got off to kind of a rough start, not least because the first four episodes are just an exercise in holding your breath waiting for June to get dragged kicking and screaming back to the Waterford house. But after that it did have some standout episodes (the Canada one, jfc). It also did one significant thing right, I thought, which was making Serena Joy a sort of secondary protagonist, teasing her possible defection from Gilead, and allowing season three to go back into the Waterford house without having to have June there; I think if June does end up back at the house then that's it, suspension of disbelief has been well and truly killed. The season ending didn't entirely land with me, it didn't do really anything to convince me that June wouldn't escape Gilead if given the chance, or that there's anything she can do by staying.

The thing about Serena Joy is that Gilead is the wish she made on an evil monkey's paw, and she deserves every kicking it gives her, I know this, and yet... I think I understand a bit more about what people see in characters like Kylo Ren, not in the sense of thinking they're really the hero (nah) or enjoying their unabashed villainy (if that's what floats your boat) but in watching them through your finger's going: fuck's sake, just this once do the right thing, for once in your useless life, be a person.

Anyway, my complicated Serena Joy - end of S2 feelings in fic form:

Better Not Wake The Baby

Serena Joy fucking Waterford.

Yeah. June kind of judges herself for that one, too.

Or,

June and Serena escape Gilead together.
netgirl_y2k: (bo & Kenzi huh)
I actually ended up going to the midnight opening of Solo in a half-empty cinema because my neighbour had a spare ticket. And for a movie that literally nobody wanted it was...fine. Quite obviously they should have swapped Woody Harrelson and Thandie Newton's roles around, because otherwise what even was the point of casting Thandie Newton? And they should have held it up for six months and released it at Christmas. Partly because it was too soon after The Last Jedi; I was sitting in the pictures when the yellow star wars logo popped up and I was like: Star Wars? I've just seen Star Wars. It's too soon. Plus, it means that the only big holiday movie this year is going to be the second Fantastic Beasts film; a movie with even more questionable casting choices than Solo, and Solo cast Emilia Clarke as a ninja crime boss. She was actually much better than I expected her to be, but you get my point. The thing I really don't understand about Crimes of Grindelwald is that you've got a character who can canonically change faces, and the knowledge that Johnny Depp is a cocksplat is unavoidable; it's not like anyone was going to ask questions if Grindelwald still looked like Colin Farrell.

Okay, I know I shouldn't apply any thoughts whatsoever to the new Tomb Raider movie but it did two things that really annoyed me. The first was that thing that a lot of movies and shows do, where they show what's clearly meant to be a fairly down at heel London flat, except it's got a roof terrace and a view of the gherkin. If you're a down on your luck Russian oligarch, maybe. Look, if Lara's making her living as a bike courier and refusing to touch her inheritance then she's living in a tower block and commuting in for three hours every morning. The second thing is, and I know it was just to get that sequel baiting shot of Lara with the two guns in, and maybe American movie producers have a skewed idea of how easy it is to procure firearms, but you cannot buy paramilitary weapons from the back room of a Ramsdens gold store. Good action sequences though.

I read Disobedience earlier in the year and thought this is going to be really hard to make into a movie, especially considering that the first trailer had made it look like a romance between the two women. In the book I never really got the sense that they really still had feelings about each other; Ronit was just a convenient vessel for Esti to pour her long repressed lesbianism into, and when Ronit finally did take her to bed it seemed to be less about Esti and more as a giant fuck you to the orthodox community that hadn't exactly welcomed her home with open arms. A hard setup to turn into a romance, yes? And as a result the changes the movie made to it seem like they were in love and might end up together someday felt pasted on, while leaving the ending ambiguous enough as to be unsatisfying. And if you've heard anything at all about this movie you probably heard about the bit in the sex scene where Rachel Weisz spits in Rachel McAdams' mouth, which doesn't make any more sense in context, and in fact the entire sex scene is a weird and uncomfortable watch. The movie is better as a study of an insular religious community than a relationship study, and the book does that better than the movie.

I didn't watch the new Jumanji film when it came out because I had thoughts about one of the only two female characters being played by Jack Black, and it seemed like they were doing a smurfette thing with Karen Gillan. Obviously, those were too many thoughts to be having about the frickin' Jumanji reboot, but they were also completely wrong, because it was the most delightful movie I'd seen all year, and it held that title until the next night when I watched Love, Simon.

I didn't see Love, Simon when it first came out, but I did read those opinion pieces about how we as a society are past needing sweet romantic comedies about two boys falling in love, and now that I have seen it I would like to join the chorus of people inviting the writers of those pieces to fuck the entire way off. Maybe we don't need Love, Simon but we don't need Jumanji either, and both of those movies made a terrible weekend at work (we had two residents, one of whom I adored, pass away) a little more bearable.

I entirely missed Wimbledon this year, as I was too busy biting my fingernails as England got perilously close to winning the World Cup. For the record, I unironically supported England up to the quarter-finals (by the standards of English footballers, Southgate and Kane seem like decent enough blokes who make it hard to work up a good head of nationalist steam) at which point I went cripes, they might actually win this and switched my allegiance to Croatia. Instead I watched Battle of the Sexes. Who would have thought Emma Stone would make such a convincing Billie Jean King? I think it was properly the best film I've seen since...gosh, Spotlight.
netgirl_y2k: (kahlan white dress)
Account Created: November 2009. Um.
Total Stories: 220. A nice round number, I feel.

Total Wordcount: 502,849
Average Wordcount: 2285
Longest Story: The Idiot's Guide to Foiling Alien Invasions at 20,198. That one time I squeaked over the finishing line of a big bang with a 20k thesis about how Mickey Smith is awesome.
Shortest Story: Message in a Bottle a DS9 ficlet I have no memory of having written clocking in at 155 words.

Total Kudos: 46,002
Average Kudos: 209. Feels legit.
Story With the Most Kudos: Living Arrangements with 3343 kudos. Listen, this fic is an outlier and should not be counted; it was, like the third Peggy/Angie fic written just when the pairing was about to have its fifteen minutes, and then it got another wee bump when I accidentally predicted that Peggy and Angie would end S1 cohabiting. We do not talk about S2.

Total Comments: 2149
Average Comments: 9.7. I don't feel like I get ten comments per story, but I guess over time...
Story With the Most Comments: Again, Living Arrangements with 112 comment threads. Again, it is an outlier and should not have been counted.

Total Author Subscriptions: 412. Who are you people?
Total Story Subscriptions: 554. I'm sorry, but I'm never going to go back to any of these. They're clearly labelled 1/1. I'm sorry.
Story With the Most Subscriptions: Okay, this is my bad. My Root/Shaw fixit When I Argue I See Shapes has 45 subscriptions, and was originally posted as a wip, before I realised that I was never going to go back to it, and that it worked okay as a oneshot, and went back and quietly relabelled it as complete. I was being facetious above, but I really am sorry about this one.

Total Bookmarks: 8560
Story With the Most Bookmarks: Living Arrangements. 700 bookmarks. Outlier. Not Counted. Etc.

Stories With No Kudos or Comments: Nothing with no kudos, but 10 with no comments. Thank goodness, because this was starting to feel a little braggy.
netgirl_y2k: (brand new day)
It's been prime reading outside with a beverage weather these last couple of months, so.

What You Want to See - Kristen Lepionka
The Unexpected Truth About Animals: a menagerie of the misunderstood - Lucy Cooke
You All Grow Up and Leave Me: a memoir of teenage obsession - Piper Weiss
The Apocalypse of Elena Mendoza - Shaun David Hutchinson
The House on Half Moon Street - Alex Reeve
Provenance - Ann Leckie
Tell it to The Bees - Fiona Shaw
Force of Nature - Jane Harper
Feel Free - Zadie Smith
Difficult Women - Roxane Gay
Who is Vera Kelly? - Rosalie Knecht
The Photographer - Craig Robertson


Whee, I'd been looking forward to the second Roxane Weary book, about a hard-drinking, noirish, bisexual private eye and What You Want to See did not let me down.

If you have ever wanted to horrify the people down the pub with anecdotes about necrophiliac penguins then The Unexpected Truth About Animals is the book for you. It's also the book for you if you like Mary Roach, books where it's clear the author knows her stuff and is only too delighted to be telling you about, or gross out humour. I loved it a lot.

You all Grow Up and Leave Me featured two things I constitutionally have a hard time sympathising with: 1) poor little rich kids, and 2) people writing books about other people's tragedies to which they happen to have been adjacent. Piper Weiss was a teenager on the upper west side when her tennis couch was found to have sexually abused some of his students, although not her. It was not a badly written memoir and might be quite an interesting read if, unlike me, you could muster up a more nuanced opinion of the author than: you are a bad person and you should feel bad about having written this.

The Apocalypse of Elena Mendoza is YA about a teenager who was the product of a virgin birth who discovers that she has the power to heal the sick, but with the side effect that every time she does other people get raptured to god knows where. I was loaned this ages ago and kept not reading it because that plot summary did nothing for me. But in the end it had loads of things I dug. A bisexual protagonist! And no love triangle! Teenager characters who behaved like teenagers and not mini 35 year olds! An ambiguous end!

Caution: if you dislike ambiguity in your resolutions the lack of explanations in this one will probably make you want to bite people, but it really worked for me, better than probably any more definite conclusion could have.

The House on Half Moon Street is Victorian set crime novel featuring a transgender man as its hero. Not a woman dressing as man to escape the restrictions placed on woman at the time (those are good too, its just not what this is...) but an actual trans guy, although poor Leo (formally Charlotte) doesn't have that language for it. And it is so good. It's apparently the first in a series and I for one cannot wait.

Content warning, because forewarned is forearmed: there is a very brief scene where our hero is raped, because I know that might be a deal breaker for a lot of people.

Provenance was... I guess it was nice to see what humanity is like outside the Radch, and maybe I liked the Imperial Radch trilogy a little less than everybody else (I actually remember very little about them, although it was only a couple of years ago that I read them) but this was just, kind of, fine.

Mostly I use tumblr as a way of getting notified as to whenever two female characters are going to make out in a movie or on tv, which was how I came to see the trailer for Tell it to the Bees staring Holliday Grainger and Anna Pacquin. And I immediately went and read the book, set in post-war Britain where a single mother falls in love with the local lady doctor; it has a happy ending and is de-frickin-lightful.

Zadie Smith is smarter than I am. I mean, I already knew that. But her essay collection Feel Free makes it clear that she's smarter than me by the same order of magnitude as I'm smarter than my dog. I was really impressed by her take on the brexit vote, and when she was talking about Get Out or Key & Peele it was almost like we shared a common language, but then she got onto modern art or experimental film... Zadie Smith is smarter than I am, and it makes for an impressive collection but not necessarily an enjoyable one.

I don't always remember that I like Roxane Gay's writing, because every time I finish one of her books I'm so raw that I need, like, a year to recover. But then I go back, because her writing is like...cauterising a wound.Dangerous Women, her collection of short stories is the same: beautifully written, deeply upsetting.

Content warning: sexual violence. whoa boy, sexual violence.

Who is Vera Kelly? is an understated, low-key spy novel about a lesbian (bisexual? Vera thinks of herself as a homosexual but sleeps with a guy more than once during the book, so) CIA operative in Buenos Aires on the eve of the Argentine revolution. It's good, but it's low low-key. If you go in expecting James Bond then you will be disappointed.

My favourite bit was the flashback to Vera's first time in a lesbian bar where no one will talk to her because they all think she's a cop. That's what I'm going to chose to believe from now on: everyone thinks I'm a cop.

The Photographer is a perfectly serviceable tartan noir. I mean that in the most neutral possible way.

(Graphic Novel:

Batwoman: The Many Arms of Death

Heh. Didn't love. It's been suggested to me that maybe I'd like the earlier run of Batwoman better. Or Batgirl.)
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
I have been trying to be more selective in signing up for exchanges this year, only signing up for the ones I'm genuinely excited to do and where I have potentially good matches, rather than just doing them for the sake of doing them. And I was dead keen on doing both the Person of Interest exchange and Fandom5k, but they were both due on the same day. Yikes.

Because Fandom5k has a five thousand word minimum - and more and more my fics are creeping up to being around about that length, but having to write that many words is a different matter - I kept pushing writing my POI exchange fic back and back in favour of the longer fic.

And my POI exchange recipient had a bunch of different requests, none of which were for Root/Shaw - one of my gimme, could write them with my eyes closed pairings - which in retrospect I was grateful for because it made me actually consider their other requests: one of which was for a fic about female!Harold Finch.

I was so sure I could write a genderswapped Finch fic in about two days. Spoiler: I couldn't. The problem was that, although I love always-a-girl fics, I don't often write them because I don't actually think that deeply about the dudes in my canons. Harold is fine; he's there and he's necessary for the premise of the show to work, but I've never actually cared about him, and it's all the same to me whether he's a force ghost at the end of the finale or off to live happily ever after in Italy with Grace,

My fic was a mess come the deadline. I usually don't like that week after the deadline but before reveals - if I have written a thing I want people to scritch me behind the ears and tell me what a clever little fic writer I am right away - but, boy, was I grateful for it this time as I entirely rewrote my fic while doing some frantic rewatching and trying to come up with a unified theory of Harold Finch; trying to figure out the ways that Harriet Finch would be different and yet the same as Harold.

In the end the story I wrote could easily have been titled Harold Finch and the Unexamined Male Privilege. I did not title it that, instead I titled it:

Birds of the Eastern Seaboard (Person of Interest; female!Harold Finch; 1.4k)
Harriet Finch is an extremely private woman.

While I was procrastinating on that fic, I was plugging away (read: putting off and panicking) at my Fandom5k fic. See, my request had been for a GoT Modern AU, possibly including Sansa/Margaery or Dany/Yara; which was both entirely in my wheelhouse and paralysis inducingly vague. And because none of my recipient's more specific prompts spoke to me - if I've learned nothing else from this exchange it's that you can write one thousand and one words of something you're not feeling, but for upwards of five thousand you have to be into it - I started revisiting modern AUs that I'd started and abandoned for whatever reason.

And ages ago I'd started writing an all-female GoT West Wing!fusion, mostly because I wanted to use the title The Crackpots and These Women, and I could never make it work, mostly because there's only so far you can believably age characters up and those characters old enough to realistically slot into the world of the West Wing aren't ones I'm interested in writing about (*cough*Stannis*cough*).

But I dug it out and went: wait, what if instead of being president Dany's a mayor, and what if instead of being a straight up West Wing fusion, it's a weird AU smush up of Game of Thrones, The West Wing, Veep, and The Thick of It? And voila:

The Crackpots and These Women (Game of Thrones; Sansa/Margaery, background Dany/Yara; 8k)
"You're in charge of press relations," Yara told Margaery, gesturing to Sansa. "Relate."
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
The Queens of Innis Lear - Tessa Gratton
Down Girl: the logic of misogyny - Kate Manne
Only Human - Sylvain Neuvel
The Covert Captain - Jeannelle M. Ferreira


The Queens of Innis Lear is a female focused fantasy retelling of King Lear. Sounds right up my alley, right? Except whatever seed of promise it has quickly gets buried in tediously overwritten prose and at least three hundred unnecessary pages. Needed a good hack-and-slash editing.

Okay, reading Down Girl was my own fault. I'd seen something about the book somewhere and come away with the impression that it was for general audiences. It is not. And when I realised that instead of putting it down and seeking out something more my speed I ploughed on through hundreds of pages of moral philosophy. I don't disagree with anything Manne says about misogyny as the law enforcement arm of the patriarchy, but I also understand a lot better why Chidi Anagonye ended up in the Bad Place.

The law of diminishing returns is strong with The Themis Files. The first book in the series was outstanding, the second was fair-to-middling. By the time we get to Only Human... Oh, dear. The ending is unsatisfying, and the author has gotten locked into the format (which worked so well in book one!) of presenting everything in the form of interviews. Except by book three they're not interviews. They're just two characters who know each other well talking. Seriously, that's not an interview. It's a conversation. Stop it.

The Covert Captain is SO BAD, YOU GUYS. It's about a woman who's been disguised as a man in the army for years and when she returns to England she falls for her commanding officer's sister. And I am 100% the audience for a book with that plot, and if it were any good at all I would surely be reccing it to high heaven, but alas it is SO, SO BAD. It is bad on a technical word handling, sentence structure level. It is bad on a characterisation level; can we see how the fiancée got from freaking out that her intended is a woman to being totally cool with it? Does the character who spent 10+ years disguised as her dead brother have any thoughts about gender or identity? No, okay then. It is bad on a plot level; never mind dealing with the gender reveal because now here's a long lost brother! Never mind that! Now they've all got scarlet fever!

*insert obligatory whine about how shite f/f romances are here*
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
-spend the morning drinking tea in your jim-jams while binge watching Horrible Histories on netflix

-fib outrageously about having left town for the bank holiday when work calls to try and get you to work on a weekend that you booked off last may

-tell your friend's small son that you are thirty-five, and yes, he can give you the birthday bumps

-ow

-consider making your friend see Rampage; see *Infinity War instead

-drink whiskey

-drink more whiskey

-that's too much whiskey

-ow, redux

*Infinity War )
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
Strange Weather - Joe Hill
A Princess in Theory - Alyssa Cole
The Woman Who Fooled The World: Belle Gibson's Cancer Con, and the Darkness at the Heart of the Wellness Industry - Beau Donelly
The Angry Chef: Bad Science and the Truth About Healthy Eating - Anthony Warner
You Can't Spell America Without Me: The Really Tremendous Inside Story of My Fantastic First Year as President Donald J. Trump - Alec Baldwin


Strange Weather is a series of short novels, because Joe Hill is allergic to the word novella, I guess. The title is a bit of a misnomer because except for the last one none of the novellas really feature weather as more than background noise, but despite my disappointment not to be reading four stories about the environmental apocalypse I really fucking loved them. Snapshot is about a polaroid camera that steals people's memories and really feels like an old school Stephen King story, which I suppose makes sense with Joe Hill being King's son. Loaded is a musing on gun violence in the US; I can't tell if it's the weakest story in the collection or just the most out of place, it certainly had the weakest ending. In Aloft a guy has a skydiving accident and lands on a cloud/UFO, and there's a whole extended metaphor about unrequited love/the "friendzone" that I really dug. My favourite was Rain where rain starts falling as metal shards; I loved it both because Hill was making fun of his own tendency to write long, rambling fantasy novels (although I would have merrily read six hundred pages about a grieving butch lesbian and her cat loving MMA fighting sidekick in the world of killer rain; it actually made me want to pick up The Fireman, which I think was the one Hill was sending up in this.) I also really appreciated the post-script where Hill said he'd been writing the story during the 2016 election, and in the original draft the president had been a harried and overwhelmed, but basically competent woman, and the story had had a much happier ending.

When I delve into the romance genre I usually go for historicals (what can I say, I enjoy a good duke pun) but I branched out into contemporaries with A Princess in Theory. The setup is a lot of fun: you know those Nigerian spam emails, what if you were getting inundated with those claiming you were the lost betrothed of an African prince, and what if they were legit?

And it was a lot of fun, but it was also two books; the first was about a harried STEM student finding love in New York, and the second was a fairy tale about the heroine discovering she really was the lost princess of not!Wakanda. And both books were good, it was just that the join was pretty obvious. Also, the hero lied about his identity for a huge chunk of the story, if that's the sort of thing that bothers you, although the heroine remains mad at him about it for a satisfyingly long time.

The hero also had a dapper lesbian sidekick, whose story I will get in a side novella if at all, but that's a known bug in my relationship with a lot of romance series.

Years ago I was the worst employee ever in a shop that sold a lot of these supplements and detox teas, and I came up with Gillian's hierarchy of wellness bullshit:

-Someone who tells you that you should quite smoking, ease up on the drink, and try to get more green veggies and oily fish in your diet knows their stuff; listen to them, or don't, you being a grownup who knows your own mind.
-It was a cold and you were getting better anyway, but the placebo effect is a real thing, and echinacea isn't going to hurt you - fill your boots.
-Anyone who uses the word detox or cleanse thinks you're a mug and wants your money.
-Anyone claiming they can cure your cancer with anything other than conventional medicine should go to Hell via prison.

And I have a lasting fondness for reading debunkings of these bullshit merchants. The Woman Who Fooled the World is about an Australian woman who lied about curing the terminal brain cancer that she didn't have with diet to the tune of an Apple endorsement and a book deal. It was a story I already knew, told in a not particularly compelling or well written way. It was worth reading though for the chapter on the real Belle Gibson, a single mother who actually does have terminal brain cancer and how her life looks nothing like the airbrushed, instagram ready image Gibson used to bilk the desperate and gullible out of christ knows how much money.

I usually enjoy Anthony Warner's profanity laden takedowns of various fad diets, but if that sounds like something you might enjoy too, I recommend his Angry Chef blog so much more than the accompanying book.

You Can't Spell America Without Me. Um. Look, I like Alec Baldwin's Trump impression on SNL too, but why anyone thought it was worth stretching out into a book I do not know. And the joke about Ivanka sneakily feeding her dad anti-psychotics disguised as vitamins has not aged well.

(April Graphic Novel:

Bombshells, vol. 3: Uprising

I loved the previous Bombshells trades for both the aesthetic and All The Superheroines, but volume three was the first one where I really felt like the plot had worked for me, too. Plus there was a lot of canon Harley/Ivy which might have gone some way to earning its spot in my affections.)
netgirl_y2k: (fire cannot kill a dragon)
-I accidentally went and got myself a second job, and it is my dream job of person who hangs out with puppies. Okay, it's not so much a job as the people whose new puppy I've been helping out with want to pay me actual money to help out on a longer term basis, previously I'd been paid in all the puppy kisses my heart could take. And while I don't think there are enough people who'd want to hire the owner of the worst dog in the world as a puppy consultant to scale up in any meaningful way, I still think this is pretty cool.

-I took my many surplus Legends of Tomorrow feelings and wrote a new fic. There's nothing quite like a new fandom for getting over writer's block, is there?

We Should Kiss Like Real People Do (LoT, Sara/Ava, 3k)

"Ava, I swear to God that if you're about to tell me that you're Jax's baby momma I'm going to have to take my hand out of your pants."

or,

Sara and Ava are out of sync, literally.
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
List and link to 5 fanfics you are currently reading

I don't really read fics long enough to require tea breaks, but here are some I have read and enjoyed recently, according to my A03 bookmarks:

shut up, kiss me, hold me tight (Legends of Tomorrow; Sara/Ava)

and miles to go (Legends of Tomorrow; Sara/Ava)

stay here wasting my time (Legends of Tomorrow; Zari/Helen of Troy)

As you can see I have been on something of a Legends of Tomorrow kick, and because there are disappointingly few LoT fics that do it for me (oh, migratory femslash fandom, I'm glad you're having fun and all, I just wish you cared more about things like canon or characterisation, or that I cared about them less) I also enjoyed this Hawkguy fic:

A Good Dog's Guide to Brooklyn (fraction!Hawkeye; Lucky AKA Pizza Dog)

Is fraction!Hawkeye what people thought they were getting in Jeremy Renner's Hawkeye? because otherwise I don't get it.

Actually, though, there is a longer fic I've been dipping in and out of:

Forgotten Adventures in a Disenchanted Land (Once Upon a Time; Mulan/Aurora)

It has been many years and many fandoms and I am still bitter about the way the Mulan and Aurora stuff panned out, and this fic should be everything I want, except it's only posted on Fucking Tumblr, and I find writing an epic length fic and only posting it on Fucking Tumblr baffling in the extreme.

List and link to 5 fanfiction authors who are amazing

Names pulled at random from my A03 subscriptions, k.

[archiveofourown.org profile] dollsome
[archiveofourown.org profile] lareinenoire
[archiveofourown.org profile] mautadite
[archiveofourown.org profile] fahye
[archiveofourown.org profile] paperclipbitch

Is there anyone in your fandom who really inspires you?

...no?

But I suspect I might be chronically uninspireable.

What ship do you feel needs more attention?

ALL OF THE ONES THAT I LIKE.

What is your all-time favorite fanfic?

So...top 5?

heaven is where you build it (hell isn't that bothered) (Person of Interest; Root/Shaw)

THE MOTHERFORKING GOOD OMENS AU

Reports May Have Been Exaggerated (Spy; Susan/Rick & Susan/Rayna)

OMG. OMG. OMG. I'S FIC FOR MY HANGOVER MOVIE. IT'S HANGOVER FIC.

& a past life in the trunk (Daredevil; Karen is Daredevil AU)

I love these sorts of AUs. I call them Backwards in High Heels AUs.

Ladies Who Organise (Discworld; genderswapped Vetinari)

I also love a good genderswap. And this is a GOOD genderswap.

Pair Dadeni (Merlin; Morgana/Vivian)

BE STILL MY ID.

If someone was to read one of your fanfics, which fic would you recommend to them and why?

Like, I ended up not being a fan of the Eleventy era, and this fic was Quite Popular while I was busy not being a fan, so I got a bit sick of it for a while, but if I have contributed to any sort of net increase in people's happiness in fandom I suspect it was by writing The Care and Feeding of Tiny Humans (and slightly larger Time Lords).

Archive Of Our Own, Dreamwidth, LiveJournal, Fanfiction.net or Tumblr - where do you prefer to post and why?

Say what you like about browsing AO3, and I can say quite a bit, but uploading fic to it is a dream.

I used to backup to DW, but don't anymore, which will bite me in the bum if AO3 ever goes away.

ff.net - I still have flashbacks to trying to format scene breaks in a way that ff.net couldn't balls up.

LJ - why?

tumblr - WHY???

Do you leave reviews when you read fanfiction? Why/Why not?

I do, and then I get out of the habit, and then I feel guilty and start commenting again.

We are currently in a commenting upswing.

Do you care if people comment/reblog your writing? Why/why not?

Of course I care, but like, I also have no time for those people who compose tumblr screeds about how authors are owed comments, or how kudos are taking away from comments.

FYI, there never was a golden age of fandom where it rained comments, and kudos are a grand invention.

How did you get into reading and/or writing fanfiction?

Logically, I know there was a time in my life when I didn't know about fic and fandom, but mildly terrifyingly I couldn't tell you when that was.

Rant or Gush about one thing you love or hate in the world of fanfiction! Go!

KUDOS ARE GREAT.

NOBODY OWES YOU A COMMENT.

ARE YOU COMMENTING ON OTHER PEOPLE'S FIC? ARE YOU? THEN SHUT UP.

Doggos

Apr. 10th, 2018 11:10 pm
netgirl_y2k: (brand new day)
I have been loaded with the cold all weekend, and that made me remember a cool thing about my dog, which is that she can tell the difference between being my properly sick and having a hangover. When I am actually sick she will do her business uncomplaining in the garden and then curl up on the couch with me to watch old episodes of Criminal Minds; when I'm hungover she will lick my eyeballs until I get up and put my trainers on.

Speaking of sick people telly, do Sky really believe that there are all that many people who want to watch incomprehensibly edited episodes of Criminal Minds at eleven am on a weekday? Is part of their business model based on catering to people with moderately high fevers who can't find the remote control?

Sorry, I am still full of cold medicine.

Anyway, when I was last talking about the dog, she'd just had her surgery to have her adamantium leg fitted and was in pretty poor form. Sixteen weeks later and she has one wonky leg, a limp that gets noticeably worse if anyone is eating cheese on toast in her vicinity, and an undiminished urge to lunge wildly at the local fauna (squirrels, cats, foxes, a field of dairy cows, a paternally enraged pair of swans, that police horse that one time.)

Every day she is more and more like her old self, and every day I remember that her old self was a total pest. I had not missed the ten pm squeaky toy chorus every day, and I had forgotten all about her habit of licking my pillows while I'm out so that I go to lie down and go 'ew, why is it all wet!?' I think she can smell my shampoo. At least, I hope that's what it is.

On the plus side, now I get to call her Hopalong Freya and sometimes she turns left without meaning to like a shopping trolley with one wonky wheel, so that's pretty funny.

Really, she has been a brave little toaster all the way through this, and has seemed pretty happy ever since the injunction on her being allowed up on the furniture was lifted - she is a pup of simple wants. It's understandable, really, as she's not the one who's going to have to pay the vet bill, which I have still not gotten. It goes to the insurance people first, and then the remainder comes to me. Fear not, I have smelling salts and a fainting couch at the ready.

I've still got my dog, though, so I suppose I can't really complain. Although, I will.

The other cool thing going on right now is that I have a standing playdate with a puppy. The people next door got their first ever dog, a little border collie pup who is as cute as ten thousand buttons, and already smarter than all of us. I fell for that one too; my first dog back when I knew nothing about dogs was a collie, and though I loved the bones of that dog, for ten years she ran absolute rings around all of us, and now the first thing on my doggy must have list is that it definitely has to be dumber than I am. So after years of being on nodding/sorry, am I in your parking space? terms with the neighbours they went, I guess in a fit of panic when the puppy was eating their brickwork, I think the girl next door might know something about dogs.

The upshot being that I now have half an hour carved out of every day for puppy cuddles and fetch - I have tried to interest Freya in playing fetch, but alas she isn't interested in chasing anything that isn't going to struggle if caught - and it is doing all kinds of good things for my mood.

I had forgotten how non self-conscious puppies make me, too. For instance I have started running with him, and normally I would be too embarrassed to run where I live, because 'fat lady tries to run' is a mortifying internet video waiting to happen, but 'unfit lady and puppy who is 80% legs try to run and BOTH fail' is a whole different thing and is hilarious.

This whole thing has also cured me of the desire to get a second dog. For a while there I'd found myself thinking 'maybe Freya would like a friend?' Well, if I have learned nothing else from introducing her to the puppy it's that she's ridiculously possessive of HER human and would very much NOT like a friend. Also, the thought of a four figure vet bill x2 was pretty sobering, too. And other people's puppies are like other people's children: they're great fun, but when you get bored playing with them you can just leave them in a crate with a bowl of water.
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
I hadn't written any fic in, like, six months, because I was either nursing a sick dog back to health (by the way, I think that in another life I would have made a very good vet nurse) or more recently picking up every spare shift going because there's no such thing as an NHS for dogs.

But I have far too many Legends of Tomorrow feelings which resulted in incl. one (1) existential crisis; do not mix with alcohol or a broken heart (Sara/Ava; not dealing with the clone thing.)

Now that I am back properly I can crack on with my fandomtrumpshate fics (Hi, gentlemen. Thank you for your patience :) And I am giving very serious consideration to doing fandom5k.

What was the first fanfic you ever wrote?

It would have been a Buffy the Vampire Slayer fic.

I don't want to talk about it.

Is there anything you regret writing?

All of it and at the same time none of it. I contain multitudes.

Name a fic you’ve written that you’re especially fond of & explain why you like it.

Well, today I like How to Ruin Your Life and Disappoint Your Loved Ones, because it goes: what if instead of dying pre-series to make sad dudes do things Lyanna raised up an army and changed the entire course of westerosi history.

What fic do you desperately need to rewrite or edit?

All of them. I mean, I'm not going to. But all of them.

What’s your most popular fanfic?

Living Arrangements

How to write a popular fic, by netgirl_y2k

1. write one of the first fics in the pairing
2. get a bunch of kudos so that it always comes top when people sort by kudos
3. accidentally predict the series finale
4. get a bunch more kudos, creating an ever reinforcing infinity loop of kudos
5. never manage to do it again

How do you come up with your fanfic titles?

Look, my most recent fic has a semi-colon in the middle of the title, and I don't think it's even correctly used.

What do you hate more: Coming up with titles or writing summaries?

I have a foolproof method for coming up with summaries:

[Totally out of context excerpt from the fic,

or,

pithy description of what it's actually about.]

Titles, on the other hand, are tricky beggars.

If someone were to draw a piece of fanart for your story, which story would it be and what would the picture be of?

ANYTHING.

Do you have a beta reader? Why/Why not?

The thing you have to understand is that I have reached the same point in my fandom career as I have in my actual career, and that point is: Fuck It, Close Enough.

What inspires you to write?

Fandom not catering to my whims. A general sense of DON'T MAKE ME COME BACK THERE AND WRITE THIS MYSELF, SO HELP YOU. LOOK WHAT YOU MADE ME DO

What’s the nicest thing someone has ever said about your writing?

People have said remarkably kind things about my characterisation, my prose, how I've made them laugh. A couple of people said that they'd picked up The Checquy Files books because they saw I'd written for them.

But my favourite of late has been the person who said this: On a minor note, awesome job on having no grammatical errors! Because no one had ever said that to me before, admittedly with good reason.

Do you listen to music when you write or does music inspire you? If so, which band or genre of music does it for you?

Most recently I wrote while listening to a playlist of Seth Meyers' a closer look videos on youtube.

Do you write oneshots, multi-chapter fics or huuuuuge epics?

Oneshots. Sometimes I wish I could write longfic because it seems like Proper Writing, then I remember that there are three, maaaybe, 50k+ fics that I've liked, and literally hundreds of sub 10k ones that I've thought were brilliant.

What’s the word count on your longest fic?

20k, but that one was an outlier and should not have been counted. I am happiest in the 3-5k range.

Do you write drabbles? If so, what do you normally write them about?

No, but I am prepared to die on the hill of A DRABBLE IS ONE HUNDRED WORDS EXACTLY. FIGHT ME.

What’s your favorite genre to write?

Feminist propaganda, feat. background or indeed foreground lesbianism.

First person or third person - what do you write in and why?

Tight third person, because I have internalised that it is the Done Thing in fic. I would like to use omnipotent third sometimes, though, because more than once I have gotten stuck because I was in the wrong person's head.

Do you use established canon characters or do you create OCs?

I mean...the Dead Ladies Club all kicked the bucket pre-canon, so basically all interpretations of them are equally valid, but I use canon names.

What is you greatest strength as a writer?

...Pithiness?

What do you struggle the most with in your writing?

Plot.

Sex scenes.

The thing where you sit down and make words.
netgirl_y2k: (brand new day)
Gnomon - Nick Harkaway
Places in the Darkness - Chris Brookmyre
Dark Matter - Blake Crouch
H is for Hawk - Helen Macdonald
The Dry - Jane Harper
The Watchmaker of Filigree Street - Natasha Pulley
Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right - Jane Mayer
The Furthest Station - Ben Aaronovitch
White Houses - Amy Bloom


Gnomon is so. fucking. weird. It's Nick Harkaway channelling China Mieville to write The Raw Shark Texts by way of Cryptonomicon. It's a near future dystopia where Britain is a surveillance state monitored by an all-seeing AI known as the Witness, where an inspector of the Witness is investigating the death of a suspect in custody. Except it's also about this greek banker being haunted by a ghost shark that lives in the stock market and eats corporations. Except maybe it's also about a greek alchemist from six thousand years before that who's trying to use magic to bring her son back from the dead and talks like an East End landlady. Except also it's about about an Ethiopian painter who escaped certain death as a political prisoner by walking through walls. Except, except it's about a mad God called Gnomon from the end of time, or it's about a poor, mad woman who's had her brain carved up to protect the Witness.

It was a seven hundred page doorstop of a library hardback where I not infrequently had to move my finger along the page as I read as though to force the words into my brain, and yet I couldn't stop reading because I had to know what the fuck was happening. I still don't know what the fuck was happening.

And I sincerely and entirely hope some of you read it. If only so you can explain it to me.

Christopher Brookmyre is my favourite author of what the book reviewing youth will insist on calling tartan noir, and although he's edged towards writing sff before Places in the Darkness is his first out and out sci-fi novel. It's a technopunk mystery set on a space station, where the god-cop-turned-corrupt detective (think Lionel Fusco, only hot, a woman, and bisexual) is forced into a redemption arc when she has to team up with her new, goody-two-shoes, stick up her bum, maybe because she's just a stickler for the rules or maybe she's secretly an android boss. They have a really neat enemies-to-friends-to-wait, were they flirting in that last scene? arc that plays out as they're forced to work together to, in the first instance, solve a brutal murder, and in the second instance, deal with the the fact that even in space corporations are bastards and not to be trusted.

It's a solid, good sci-fi novel. It's a solid, good buddy cop mystery. I liked it a lot. I have but one complaint, and it's that no one in it was Scottish. If Brookmyre was ever going to write a book set in space then I wanted it to be more Scottish. I'm talking the entire populations of Glasgow, Paisley, and Dundee just on the moon, and it's never explained; I'm not saying that humanity's future in space would be glorious or long-lived, but God would it be fun while it lasted.

Holy sentence fragments, Batman! was most of my reaction to Dark Matter a story about a man lost in the multiverse trying to get back to his wife and son. The alternate universe hook has been handled in more creative and interesting ways in pretty much every sci-fi show ever, yet the characters were drawn too thinly to make it a compelling character or family drama. It was, idk, baby's first science fiction by way of James Patterson's prose?

Its saving grace was that it was a super quick read that I never felt tempted to DNF because almost as soon as I started it I was nearly finished, possibly because of all the sentence fragments. Holy cow!

H is for Hawk is a memoir in which Macdonald, an experienced falconer, processes her father's death by purchasing and training a goshawk she names Mabel. And when she's talking about her life, her grief, her relationship to Mabel the book is really good, really compelling. But for reasons I still don't understand she intercuts this with a mini biography of the life of TH White and a recap of White's book The Goshawk and every time the book steered back to that I went …but why? and put it down for the rest of the day.

I judge crime novels by three metrics: 1. Do I like the detective? 2. Did the setting work for me (bonus points for not being London)? 3. Did I guess whodunnit?

And so to The Dry. 1. I liked but didn't love Aaron Faulk; as a rule I prefer female leads. 2. It was set in rural Australia, not somewhere I'd ever seen a mystery set before, so bonus bonus points. 3. Nope, hurrah.

I also judge crime novels on whether they have gratuitous sexual violence, and generally don't finish those that do. I DNF a lot of crime novels that way. Anyway, The Dry merely nodded in that direction, and was generally very good.

The Watchmaker of Filigree Street is set in London in the 1880s, and features a Japanese watchmaker who can remember the future, a dispirited civil servant, and a rare female oxbridge graduate. It reminded me of Sorcerer to the Crown because of the time and place; it reminded me of Angelmaker because of the clockwork; it reminded me of Witches of New York because of the magical realism; it reminded me of The Night Circus because of the writing, and it wasn't nearly as good as any of them.

It was very much a damp squib.

Dark Money traces the origins of kochtopus in US politics and how citizens united gave it a shot of steroids. A straightforward and compulsively readable account of something that must have originally taken an army of forensic accountants to uncover. Stops before the 2016 election, so you can only imagine how much worse it got. Generally excellent if you are at all interested in this kind of thing

My thing with the Rivers of London series is that in small doses I really love Peter's first person narration, and in larger doses all the proselytising about London gets to me, so as a novella The Furthest Station was just right!

I don't know if there's much I can say about White Houses. I feel like you're either the sort of person who wants to read published Eleanor Roosevelt/Lorena Hickok RPF or you're not, and you already know where you fall on that. For what it's worth I'm on the yes, please side of the divide. I will also say that the writing was stunning.
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
But first, a totally subjective and non-scientific ranking of all the Marvel Netflix series to date:

1. Jessica Jones, Season 1
2. Luke Cage, Season 1
3. The Punisher, Season 1
4. Daredevil, Season 1
5. The Defenders
6. Jessica Jones, Season 2
7. Daredevil, Season 2
8. Iron Fist, Season 1

We'll see when the second season of Luke Cage comes out in the summer, but so far only some egregious miscasting on the part of Iron Fist is saving the sophomore outings from being dead last, and I say this as someone who I think liked Jessica Jones S2 more than a lot of people did.

Jessica Jones S2 )
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
OTPs?

See, I have different sorts of otps.

There are flash-in-the-pan otps, like how I am currently totally obsessed with Sara/Ava (and fandom missed a trick when we decided that we were going to call that pairing avalance and not sharpe lance, just sayin') but expect to be fully over it by the time that it turns out that Ava is a robot or whatever.

Then there are not-really-an-otp otps, like Donna Noble/her memories, or Morgana Pendragon/getting the hell out of Camelot, doing some pet therapy with her baby dragon, and meeting a nice girl.

And all-the-dudes-in-canon-are-awful otps. All the dudes fandom wants to ship Sansa with are a) terrible, and b) usually fifteen to thirty years older than her. Dany's taste in men is inexcusably dreadful, being entirely rapists, Jack Sparrow cosplayers, and nephews. A good 90% of my asoiaf femslashing is rooted in one or both of these things.

The closest thing I have to a traditional otp is Root/Shaw, where I'm interested in the canon and characters outside of the ship, but I'm not interested in either character being shipped with anyone else.

OT3s?

Nope.

NoTPs?

Merlin/Arthur.

It's mostly bitterness, tbh, because I don't like it and it was 80% (when the fandom first took off) to 99.8% (now) of everything there was. At the time I could have given you what I thought were quite sensible reasons why Merlin (the character) was the worst and his relationship with Arthur was toxic and awful, but thankfully I never went too far down the rabbit hole of hating things for great justice.

See also how the fandom managed to ruin Supergirl for me with that nonsense.

After all, sometimes you just hate someone's stupid face and it doesn't have to be any more complicated than that.

BroTPs

I kind of really like that the post series Team Machine is Shaw and Fusco (and Bear!) S5 was pushed for time, I know, but I did wish we'd got to see Fusco's reaction to Shaw being back, because as much as he'd grumble Fusco was All In for her after she saved his son, and I like to imagine Shaw's horrified realisation, after they've been working the numbers together for a while, that not only has she become the sort of person who has a best friend, but that it's Lionel Fusco.

Is there an obscure ship which you love?

Back in my Buffy days I didn't like Willow/Tara and overlooked Buffy/Faith and instead glommed on to the largely non-existent Tara/Anya.

Gwen/Morgana was kind of fine, but during Merlin I shipped Morgana with basically every other female character more, even though they were exclusively one episode nonentities or her sister.

Everything would have been better if Elia and Lyanna had just run off together. I mean, Jon Snow might not have been born, but that would have been...fine.

Are there any popular ships in your fandom which you dislike?

Buffy/Spike, Willow/Tara, Arthur/Merlin, Jack/Ianto, Ten/Rose, Sansa/Sandor, Jon/Dany, Rhaegar/Lyanna.

My history in fandom is a long and distinguished one of going: but why isn't fandom catering to my exact tastes?

Who was your first OTP and are they still your favourite?

I'm pretty sure it was Tom Paris and B'Elanna Torres from Star Trek: Voyager, so no.

What ship have you written the most about?

According to AO3 it's Gwen/Morgana, which is funny because I didn't actually ship them after the first season or so. It's not that I wasn't into Morgana being redeemed by the love of a good woman, I just wanted it to be a woman whose face she had been less irredeemably awful and murder-y to.

Fannish momentum was the reason I wrote so much for them, I guess.

Is there a ship which you wished you could get behind, but you just don’t feel them?

During the recent run of Star Trek: Discovery I wished that I could have gotten into Burnham/Georgiou, for which there was at least some fic, rather than Burnham/Tilly, for which there was not.

Any ships which you surprised yourself by liking?

It's never more than a passing that would be cute, but boyslash pairings. Before I gave up on Supergirl I had soft, fuzzy feelings for both Winn/Mon-El and Winn/James.

How did you get involved in your latest fandom?

It's Legends of Tomorrow, and it was a gif of Caity Lotz's abs.

What are the best things about your current fandom?

It feels pretty free of a lot of the negativity that even from a distance seems to swirl around the other Arrowverse shows. For the moment, at least, There's still that Ava maybe being a robot thing coming up.

Is there a fandom you read fic from but don’t write in?

Ooh, loads. Most recently The Good Place and Legends of Tomorrow. There's already a plethora of Version 218 fics, and Legends of Tomorrow gives me most of what I usually look for in fanfic in canon.
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
In service of my actually being around a bit here is a meme I have nicked from [personal profile] nostalgia, there are more questions than these but I shall answer them at a later date.

1. What was the first fandom you got involved in?

Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

It's a bit funny because recently people on tumblr were reblogging things celebrating the 25th anniversary and I realised that, nope, still don't want to even look at anything to do with that show. As well as being my first fandom it is also the fandom that I fell out of with the biggest thunk. It wasn't like Merlin where I hung around for years being cross and ruining things for other people; I got to the attempted rape, salted the ashes, and never thought about the show or fandom again.

2. What is your latest fandom?

Legends of Tomorrow.

It is so relaxing to have a show that I just like. That I don't want to think too critically about or engage with too deeply (I know this is technically an option for all shows, but let's be real, if we were wired like that we wouldn't be in fandom). Where there's never going to be an out of left field plot development or bit of characterisation that will ruin the show for me with its stupidity, because of course it will be stupid, it's all stupid, it's meant to be stupid. That's the whole point.

It is a show that makes me happy in my heart.

Also, it has Sara Lance.

3. What is the best fandom you’ve ever been involved in?

Person of Interest was good times.

Root/Shaw was exactly the type of pairing I wanted to write after years of writing pseudo mediaeval ladies versus the patriarchy. The extended gap between seasons four and five gave me lots of time for reading and writing while the binge watch was still fresh in my mind. And despite the filler episode and pacing issues of season five it gave me lots of good Root/Shaw content. At least it did up until Root died, but I mostly managed to sidestep that wank, partly because pacing issues aside I thought that was a good and fitting end for that character, and partly because the people screaming the loudest didn't seem to care about PoI so much as they were still mad about Lexa and looking for a And Another Thing...

4. Do you regret getting involved in any fandoms?

Merlin.

Not so much getting involved, as sticking around being a Negative Nellie for so long once it became clear that both show and fandom were For Other People To Enjoy.

5. Which fandoms have your written fanfiction for?

Doctor Who, ASOIAF/GoT, Merlin, and Person of Interest are the big ones.

Agent Carter, The Checquy Files, Discworld, Jessica Jones, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Kushiel's Legacy, and The 100 all feature at least once.

While I didn't scrape my Buffy and Harry Potter fic from the face of the internet none of it is on AO3. The Buffy fic for the aforementioned crashing out of fandom, the HP fic because it was bad.
netgirl_y2k: (Default)
Red Clocks - Leni Zumas
Disobedience - Naomi Alderman
Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit - Jaye Robin Brown
The Wanderers - Meg Howrey
Anatomy of a Scandal - Sarah Vaughan
A History of Britain in 21 Women - Jenni Murray
The Seagull - Ann Cleeves
Utopia For Realists: and how we can get there - Rutger Bregman
Null States - Malka Older


I keep reading about how there is a new wave of feminist dystopia novels coming. Gosh, I wonder why that might be. Red Clocks is set in a US five minutes from now where a president most people didn't vote for and a number of ideologically driven governors amend the constitution to ban any and all abortions and make fertility treatments really hard to come by. The thing I really liked about it is-- Like, The Handmaid's Tale is scary, but it's allegorically scary, it wouldn't happen like that, not exactly like that, and not that quickly; but this, the idea that there could be this huge sweeping reduction to women's rights, and there would be some grumbling, and some protests, but mostly life would just chug on, that's more insidiously frighting, because that's possible in the short to medium term. And because the tragedies that come from it - because you can't force a woman to go through with a pregnancy she absolutely doesn't want, all you can do is force her into taking stupid risks, and come down like the fist of a vengeful God on terrified teenagers - are small and intimate and not a large scale horror movie, people just, kinda, get used to it.

The bit of world building that really fascinated me was the Pink Wall, where the US has somehow strong-armed Canada into turning any woman suspected of seeking an abortion back at the border. It got me thinking about about the Repeal the 8th vote coming up in Ireland, and how my sister who's lived in Galway for years thinks that there would have been a vote ages ago if not for the fact that it's so easy (not easy, no, but there's no one turning you back at the airport) to go to England, allowing people to just... keep not thinking about it.

There are four pov characters: a teenager who's pregnant and doesn't want to be, her teacher who can't get pregnant and desperately wants to, the mother of two young children, and a weirdo who lives in the woods and knows more about the gynaecological uses of plants than the authorities are comfortable with. It's actually a very good literary dystopia, with a dystopia that feels all too possible.

I read two books about religion and lesbianism in quick succession, and my reactions to them probably tell you more about me than it does about the books.

Disobedience I picked up because of the Rachel Weisz adaptation coming out later this year (trailer here), and I wouldn't necessarily recommend it someone on that basis. The trailer makes it look the movie will focus much more on the relationship between the two women; in the book their relationship is pretty incidental to a study of grief and an insular religious community. I also wouldn't recommend it to anyone looking for a book about a happy f/f relationship; the two women don't end up together, and I don't think as a reader you were meant to want them too. But if you're interested in a very quiet, very British, room-with-a-view-with-a-staircase-and-a-pond type novel about the orthodox Jewish community in London then I can quite honestly recommend it.

Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruits is a YA novel set in, well, Georgia where the out daughter of an evangelical preacher agrees to go back into the closet for a year at the behest of her father, and then, dun dun dun, meets a girl. It is bright, it is cheerful, it is well written, it has a happy ending where the two girls end up together. And it left me feeling squirmy and uncomfortable and particularly British. Maybe it's the generally hangdog vibe of the anglican church, maybe it's that nothing will cure you of catholicism quite so thoroughly as thirteen years of catholic school, but there's something about evangelical religion, particularly US style evangelical christianity which makes me, well, squirmy and uncomfortable.

Anatomy of a Scandal is a courtroom drama about a disgraced politician accused of rape. With plot twists that wouldn't be out of place in a soap opera and some really questionable punctuation choices I barely finished it.

The Wanderers is about three astronauts participating in a simulated mission to mars for a private corporation, a la space x, to help work out the logistics for a later manned mission. But as the simulation continues and becomes more and more elaborate they start to wonder if maybe they haven't been sent into space for real. It's claustrophobic, and ambiguous, and paranoia inducing, and I really liked it a lot.

A History of Britain in 21 women was by the lady what does Women's Hour on the radio, and I'm not sure who the intended audience was? Each chapter was a precis of the life of one british woman from Boudica to Nicola Sturgeon; it was too much stuff I already knew about the women I was familiar with, and not enough information on the ones that were new to me. I'm just not sure who this book was actually for.

I've never really been able to get into the Vera novels before, even though the the TV show is excellent, with a top-notch line in dramatic shots of the Northumberland countryside, and grouchy upper-middle aged lady detectives. With The Seagull I finally cracked it, you've got to pretend Brenda Blethyn is reading it to you. If they're not having her narrate the audiobooks then they're missing a trick.

In Utopia for Realists Rutger Bregman advocates for a universal basic income, a fifteen hour workweek, and a world without borders. And, look, I am totally convinced by his arguments in favour of a universal basic income. Partly because I work in social care, and my retirement plans are a) universal basic income, or b) that comet that wiped out the dinosaurs, I guess; and partly because you can tell that UBI is what Bregman is passionate about, it's what he's thought most deeply about, and where his arguments are most cogent.

He's pretty good at making the case for a fifteen hour workweek too, and I can't tell if the fact that I was less convinced was because his argument was less refined, or because my lived experience of mcjobs and bullshit jobs has made me a cynic, because that seems to me distinctly more utopian and less likely to happen in my lifetime than UBI. By the time Bregman gets to the section on universal free movement... well, he throws in some statistics in support of his case, but you can tell that he hasn't really tuned his giant, empathetic brain onto the subject with any kind of focus.

So the book starts strong and fades, but there's still lots of food for thought there, and I'd really recommend it.

I'd really freakin' adored the micro-democratic world-building of Infomocracy where people are governed in clusters of ten thousand people, and your government may be totally different from the government two streets over. So I was so disappointed when most of Null States took place outside the world of micro-democracy. This is the second book in a series; murders were committed and then never solved, plot arcs were set up and then barely advanced an inch. It was a second book so second book-y that it made me not want to read the third book.

I will say that the first book, Infomocracy, was really good and didn't feel like it needed a sequel.

I started but DNF'd The Woman in the Window having decided that I'd liked it better back when it was called The Girl on the Train.

(February Graphic Novels:

Patsy Walker, AKA Hellcat!: Careless Whiskers
Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur: BFF


I have decided to embrace that what I like in comics are bright colours, simple stories, localised happiness, and female characters aplenty. Sorry, dude who's my only rl friend into comics, but I am never going to read The Killing Joke.

AKA Hellcat! was easily my favourite of all the comics I've read so far. I'm bummed that it's finished, but also not bummed because I feel like three trades is a complete story and plenty for me to treasure forever.

Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur was super lovely, but I feel like I got it and don't need to read more. I shall certainly look forward to the upcoming animated show for mornings when I am hungover and/or sad.

The other thing I've decided I like in comics is things that are off to the side and don't get hijacked by the main continuity. Like, I don't care that She-Hulk got taken out of commission in whatever smash-bang comic book event was going at the time, she should have been able to continue being bffs with Patsy in AKA Hellcat!, goddammit!

This is true of the movies too. I keep saying that I don't care about the MCU, even though I've liked-to-more-than-liked the last three that I've seen (Homecoming, Ragnarock and Black Panther), when what I really mean is that I don't care about Steve, Tony, Infinity Stones, or Thanos.)
netgirl_y2k: (kahlan white dress)
The two shows I've been making a special point of keeping up with are Legends of Tomorrow and Star Trek: Discovery.

Legends because, well, it's just fucking delightful, isn't it?

Time disaster best friends society )

Discovery is not the show I got a Netflix account for, but I did wrangle the use of someone else's for it... I wonder if I don't mention that the season is over I can hang on to the password till Jessica Jones S2 drops?

star trekkin' across the universe )

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