I can offer in return the raws for volume one of Okano Reiko’s manga adaptation of The Forgotten Beasts of Eld, which I obviously never finished scanlating.

Everyone wants those, right? Everyone cares about Patricia McKillip manga? Adapted by Okano Reiko? Everyone should care about Patricia McKilllip manga adapted by Okano Reiko.

(I cannot presently scan volumes 2 and 3; I no longer have access to a functioning flatbed scanner.)
The sensory/cognitive processes which it considers unconscious and instinctive are mostly conscious and learned for me, because, y'know. My sensory shit can’t run reliably on autopilot, because that part of my brain is fucked up.

And so far - admittedly I’m only like 1/3 through - the book kind of assumes that internalized racism/ableism/etc-etc do not exist, and thus your “gut instincts” about whether a person is trustworthy will never be affected by the person’s ethnicity/wheelchair/etc-etc.

Does the guy ever back up on that? I am about to stop reading.
(okay? okay.)

A WIZARD OF EARTHSEA IS WAY BETTER THAN EITHER THE DISPOSSESSED OR THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS

LEGUIN'S SHORT FICTION IS BETTER THAN HER NOVELS BECAUSE NOVELS ALLOW HER TO SPEND TOO MUCH TIME ON CHARACTERIZATION, WHICH IS MOSTLY JUST "SYMPTOMS OF DEPRESSION," AND THAT'S RARELY NARRATIVELY COMPELLING, OKAY

ANNNNNND HER NON-SFF SHORT FICTION IS HONESTLY ON AVERAGE BETTER THAN THE SFF STUFF, THOUGH HER LIKE, TOP FIVE, THOSE ARE PROBABLY SFF

(ASIDE FROM OMELAS (YOU CAN'T WALK AWAY FROM THE ONES WHO WALK AWAY FROM OMELAS, INCOMPREHENSIBLE THEMATIC SEA KNOWN AS THE "SFF GENRE," IT'S INESCAPABLE AND IT HATES YOU AND IT'S GONNA OUTLAST YOU) THREE OR FOUR OF THE TOP FIVE ARE PROBABLY IN A FISHERMAN OF THE INLAND SEA, BUT I'M UNCOMFORTABLE CHOOSING)

(okay that's it for leguin, and, uh)

THE GOBLIN EMPEROR WASN'T VERY GOOD, LIKE, EVEN IF YOU LIKE THAT KIND OF H/C IDFIC STUFF THERE'S MORE-EMOTIONALLY-AFFECTING EXAMPLES OF IT IN LIKE THE FIRST COUPLE PAGES OF THE AO3'S HOMESTUCK TAG WHEN YOU SORT IT BY EITHER KUDOS OR BOOKMARKS

AND STEVEN UNIVERSE IS ALL-AROUND BETTER THAN THE ANCILLARY NOUN BOOKS AT >60% OF THE THINGS WHICH THE ANCILLARY NOUN BOOKS ARE TRYING TO ACHIEVE

THESE BOOKS ARE NOT GOOD AT DIALOG, AND ONLY INTERMITTENTLY GOOD AT CHARACTERIZATION, WHICH RENDERS THEIR PRETTY-COMPELLING AND -BELIEVABLE WORLDBUILDING CLINICAL AND PREACHY, AND ROBS THEIR POTENTIALLY-EXTREMELY-COMPELLING INDIVIDUAL EMOTIONAL ARCS OF ALL THE ACTUAL EMOTION

BREQ'S A SHITTY CHOICE FOR SOLE POV CHARACTER, SERIOUSLY, SHE SHOULD BE A FIGURE MOSTLY VIEWED AT A LUSTFUL/SEETHING/OVERAWED DISTANCE BY OTHER PEOPLE TRYING TO FIGURE OUT WHAT HER DEAL IS LIKE SHE'S SOME KIND OF A FRANCIS LYMOND, HOW WAS THIS NOT OBVIOUS

THE FACT THAT ANCILLARY SWORD DIDN'T AT LEAST SWITCH OVER TO TISARWAT'S POV WHILE BREQ WAS OFF AT SUMMER CAMP IS A TOTAL WASTE OF A GOOD TISARWAT, I MEAN COME ON

(homestuck)

MOOMINVALLEY IN NOVEMBER IS ABOUT TWO HUNDRED PAGES LONG AND EASILY ACHIEVES 95% OF ANDREW HUSSIE'S APPARENT GOALS FOR ACT 6 OF HOMESTUCK, WHICH IS GONNA BE LONGER THAN PI BEFORE IT'S FUCKING OVER, WE WILL NEVER ESCAPE THIS INCREASINGLY-SELF-LOATHING RECURSIVE HELL-NARRATIVE

YET HOMESTUCK STILL DESERVES THE HUGO AND NEBULA AWARDS MORE THAN PROBABLY ANYTHING THAT'S WON EITHER SINCE 4/13/2009, BUT THE PEOPLE WHO VOTE IN THOSE AWARDS ARE JUST AS SMUGLY INSULAR ABOUT WHAT COUNTS AS "GOOD SFF" AS THE "LITERARY FICTION" PEOPLE WHOM THEY SO BITTERLY RESENT

SO THEY REFUSE TO READ IT BECAUSE IT'S GOT DICK JOKES AND EMBEDDED FLASH GAMES AND AN ENTHUSIASTIC FOLLOWING AMONG PRECISELY THE PEOPLE WHOM "SERIOUS SFF FANS" OF EVERY MAJOR POLITICAL STRIPE LEAST RESPECTS

FUCK US

I REGRET US

(AND HUSSIE'S JUST GOING TO KEEP POSTING OPAQUE HORSE JOKES ON TWITTER AND HATING THE WORLD FOREVER, WHICH IS NOT AN UNREASONABLE REACTION!, BUT IT'S GENERALLY DESTRUCTIVE AND SELF-DESTRUCTIVE AND Y'KNOW, UNGRACEFUL. AND I WOULD LIKE TO OFFER HIM SOME OF THE DRUGS I'M A LITTLE HIGH ON RIGHT NOW, I GUESS?

JUST, LIKE, TAKE A BREAK AND MAYBE WRITE LITERAL GODDAMN CON AIR FANFIC UNDER A PSEUDONYM OR SOME SHIT UNTIL YOUR HEAD'S IN A BETTER PLACE? TAKE SOME BRAIN-LASIX AND FLUSH THE RESULTING FLUIDS DOWN A SEPARATE NARRATIVE. THEN MAYBE SEGUE THAT ONE BACK INTO HOMESTUCK IF YOU WANT. BLOW SOME GODDAMN MINDS.)

(/homestuck)

THE HUGO AND NEBULA AWARDS ARE PRESENTLY WALLOWING IN A STATE OF SUCH DEEP INANITY AS TO BE USEFUL ONLY FOR MAKING PRIOR WINNERS FEEL BAD ABOUT THEMSELVES - WHICH OF COURSE IS THE WAY OF MOST ARTISTIC AWARDS MOST OF THE TIME! - BUT JESUS PEOPLE WE HAVE THE FUCKING INTERNET NOW, AND YOU'RE ALL NERDS WHO ARE ON THE INTERNET ALL THE TIME, IT SHOULD BE OBVIOUS TO YOU THAT YOU'RE NOT VOTING FOR "THE BEST SFF BOOKS" YOU'RE VOTING FOR "THE BOOKS MOST APPEALING TO READERS OF A COUPLE OF OVERCOOKED AND SOON-TO-BE-RIGHTFULLY-ABANDONED SUBGENRES OF SFF"

SO THE PUPPIES THING IS NOT AT ALL SURPRISING, IT'S BARELY EVEN A THING

THIS "COMMUNITY" IS SO INSULAR AND LAZY THAT MEDIOCRE TROLLS LIKE VOX DAY AND MEDIOCRE DICKHEADS LIKE AJA ROMANO ARE REGULARLY ABLE TO HOLD PEOPLE'S ATTENTION, WHILE THE MULTIDIMENSIONAL SHITARRAY THAT IS WINTERFOX WAS ABLE TO OPERATE COMFORTABLY FOR AN EXTENDED PERIOD OF TIME JUST BECAUSE EVERYTHING ELSE GOING ON IN HER GENERAL VICINITY WAS SO GODDAMN BORING

LIKE "LET'S ARGUE ABOUT WHETHER SLASH IS APPROPRIATIVE FOR THE THOUSANDTH FUCKING TIME, AND WHY THE GENRE'S FULL OF MONARCHIES EVEN IN SPACE, AND COMPLAIN ABOUT YA DYSTOPIAS AND ALSO DEFEND YA DYSTOPIAS, AND MOURN FOR OUR YOUTH FOR OUR SEPARATE INDIVIDUAL IDEOLOGICAL REASONS

BUT LET'S NOT READ ANYTHING BUT THESE FIVE OR SIX GODDAMN THINGS AND REMIXES OF AND REFLEXIVE REACTIONS TO THESE SPECIFIC THINGS"

LIKE YOU KNOW WHEN CERTAIN TEENAGE BOYS DON'T HAVE ANYTHING BETTER TO DO, AND THEY START DARING EACH OTHER TO PUNCH THEMSELVES IN THE FUCKING FACE, AND INEVITABLY SOMEONE'S GOT TO GO TO THE ACTUAL ER

FUCK US, YOU KNOW?

(deep breath)

AND BUJOLD SUCKS NOW

is that she for the most part has got two modes, and while she's tried other stuff, she's not really greeeeeeat at doing anything other than these two things. Like I think most writers, her work can be plotted with decent accuracy using only two thematic axes; thus, she need grind no other. For her, there's basically Anhedonic Mode and Self-Destructive Mode.

So, both axes are depression, basically. Sorry.

The Anhedonic Mode is what it sounds like: it's just kind of trying to wrestle emotion out of experiences and sensory impressions that ought to mean something to you but just don't, and maybe the problem's only that you Think Too Much About This Crap? (It's not - that's a symptom, not a cause - but I don't know if she agrees.)

The Dispossessed and The Left Hand of Darkness are heavily Anhedonic. Which is why they don't actually appeal to me much! The latter makes its way over into Self-Destructive, in its way, and that does work, but in my opinion it's not the best use she makes of the progression.

The Self-Destructive Mode is also what it sounds like: a character entirely destroys themself or some part of themself because, somehow, nothing else can save them. In her stuff that appeals to me most, the character goes into, I guess, Ecstatic Self-Annihilation Mode, where they are really, really fucking into wrecking their own shit.

Read more... )
did I ever post the thing where - I mean did it get into the one fic what I'd decided Aranea's planet's name was

*pets the cat*

ow he's a jackass... and as such, he scratched me

*continues petting the cat*

did I ever

but okay it was "the Land of Some Charts and the Firmament"

*falls asleep*
is that Lapis is just. Definitely Seivarden. Which necessarily means Steven is Breq!

Which means... someone has to be Awn.
SHERI S TEPPER WE PRESENT YOU THIS AWARD FOR YOUR MANY DECADES OF WORK IN CREEPING US THE FUCK OUT AND MAKING US WANT TO DIE

THE AWARD WILL EXPLODE

WHY DID YOU WRITE "BEAUTY" YOU SHOULD NOT HAVE DONE THAT
Dang, Lois McMaster Bujold took on some FRAUGHT Tumblr-political and Tumblr-religious issues in The Hallowed Hunt. Brave woman.

Basically, she comes down against all Otherkin being irrevocably cut off from God's grace, which is an unusual stance! But she does hedge her bets a little by taking the position that they'll require a shaman to cleanse their souls after death, and that that shaman is most likely doomed to wander the earth as an unquiet ghost. Reasonable enough.

And I probably don't need to say this, but as always, none of this applies to Horsekin. Don't be a horse, kids.

Other than that the book wasn't that good, unfortunately. Too many characters, too little characterization; too much backstory, too little story.

Jun. 10th, 2015 06:06 am
I just think Lois McMaster Bujold needs to lie down for a while or fall out of a moving car or have a fairly bad acid trip. Some combination of these experiences may serve to solve the problem.
I read Uprooted and gosh, she must've given herself carpal tunnel straightening out such an obviously gay book.

It reads exactly as if she hurriedly chopped out all the scenes where the girls should have been making out and didn't bother to replace them with anything to make their relationship make sense again. And then stuck on the heterosexual happy ending and sent the book off before the glue had dried.
but I read it during a period in which I was extremely depressed and don't remember much of it, and I'm kind of afraid to re-read it. What if the book itself is extremely depressing? I kind of think it might be.

So, someone else should read it and tell me if it is safe to go back to! Here is the plot: The apocalypse happened and there is a single Manic Pixie Dream Girl Android still hanging around the factory where they made those. She leaves and goes on an adventure in South Asia. A guy mistakes her for a spy and says, "You are Derveet's!" and she thinks, "Oh, so this is the name of my owner, cool!" and imprints forever on this woman she doesn't know.

Fortunately, Derveet is a badass lesbian bandit revolutionary leader, who I think even has an eyepatch?, so this was obviously the best possible outcome for everyone anyway.

Then dystopian stuff happens and I don't really remember much of it. Someone is addicted to future-heroin? It's not Derveet or the robot, it's someone else.
I'd be surprised if anyone was awaiting my opinion on Gay Slavefic [Lymond Chronicles|Mary Renault Book] before wading in there, but it does its thing pretty well! I bless your endeavor.

I am sleep-deprived and read the first two books in about six hours today, in between fits of stunned incoherent torpor, and other fits of impatient banging on the keyboard working on the amazing Dwarf Fortress lesbian romance novel idea I came up with sometime in the carnivorous insomniac mists of the past few days. It's about girl-version Cacame Apebald, but it's the future, so the dwarves have mecha and the elves have genetically engineered trees such that they are mean. It is my best silly concept ever and I will definitely finish it well before the fever I apparently have breaks. I'm leaving room for the possibility is that I will instead pass the fuck out in a pile of cat litter during this timeframe, but that's an equally productive course of action.

I'm pretty sure that noise outside is villains and not just a branch so I'm going to go lock myself in my room or some shit.

May. 11th, 2015 08:55 pm
My predictions for the DADA Latin teacher in The Raven King:

* Snape mean future Adam
* Ronanbledore
* regular Ronan
* the shitty sleeper
* Butternut
* a tree that's been done wrong
* Clow Reed
* Piper's dog

May. 9th, 2015 10:32 pm
My other concern for the day is the acronym TRC, which stands, unacceptably, for both "The Raven Cycle" and "Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle."
to make me feel better about various things. The other day I re-read The Ringworld Engineers and The Ringworld Throne. This had the unintended effect of making me feel worse about various things.

1) I would like to demand an apology from Little Me for reading these books and thinking they were basically fine.

2) I would like to demand an apology from my mother for never censoring my reading material.

3) I would like to demand an apology from the publishers for not insisting that the series be renamed "Orgyworld" upon Niven's initially turning in the draft for Ringworld Engineers.

4) The Ringworld is really big and has thousands of different intelligent species on it, and it's kind of cut into two separate worlds in the middle by two massive impassable oceans (the obvious implications of which are never really addressed). Pretty much every culture is nonetheless totally down for casual interspecies orgies just whenever, and will in fact be insulted if their guests do not join in the orgies. Compulsory Xeno Orgyworld.

(Bunch of goddamn Homestucks.)

5) Niven has a thing for coming up with alien species in which the women are unable to consent to and/or enjoy sex. He's got to two species with non-sentient women and one with women who don't orgasm in RE alone. Plus two where everyone goes into heat, but he obviously only deals with the effects upon women.

6) Every single person on Orgyworld is straight and cis? Every single person in every single alien species on Orgyworld, all straight and cis? How does that work logistically, even? During all those compulsory xeno orgies, in which some species' women are necessarily disinterested.

7) One species was able to form a Ringworld-spanning empire specifically because their xeno orgy skillset was so superior. Fucking Homestucks.

8) I'm reasonably certain that Consider Phlebas was Iain M. Banks throwing a semi-dignified shitfit about Larry Niven. It stopped being dignified when he blew up the orbital and you could hear the psychic echo of his scream of "THIS IS WHAT I THINK OF YOUR FUCKING RINGWORLD." The Eater sequence also wasn't subtle.

9) Seriously, where does Niven get off not addressing the world being split in half by two impassable fucking oceans.

10) Sad Larry Niven Thing: I'm sure it never even occurred to him that Teela would be a much better viewpoint character than Louis.
Gansey frowned at the disordered handwriting. “I think he needs to come to terms with his sexuality.”


I admire this, this is good characterization. Nice job.
Notttttt sure how I feel about this! That one fanfic's going to be getting a lot of new readers, I think.

It's just, I don't want a new POV character, I want, like, Cordelia stomping around the galaxy messing with people's heads for three hundred pages. She goes on an adventure, with Elli, and they make out. And it ends up in a Space Tabloid and Miles's life is ruined. Yes, that's the book I want.
They nominated one person who, upon realizing who they were and what they were up to, turned down the nomination: a reviewer/essayist named Matthew Surridge. So I went to his blog and looked at some of his stuff. He's pretty good!

He wrote a really thoughtful review of The Changeling Sea that does a better job than I ever have of explaining Patricia McKillip's Whole Thing. If I have failed to convince you to try her stuff (I have, I'm bad at positivity), please go read it! So this guy can convince you.

and then you can write me Homestuck/Ombria in Shadow crossover fic, seriously someone needs to do that, it would work SO WELL
Did anyone besides me in the whole world read Sharon Shinn’s attempt to write a murder mystery? It was called Wrapt in Crystal, and it's absolutely bizarre, because the guy “caught” at the end of the book was clearly not the actual murderer.

And I have never been able to figure out if Shinn knew this or not.

So, the murders were ritualistic and religious in nature - the killer kills a nun from one of a city's two prominent religious orders at set intervals, alternating between the two, and tying a religious relic taken from the last victim around the next one's wrists. As originally established, the murderer would have needed to be a local in order to move around the way they did. The guy the detective caught wasn't from the right planet. In the only scene in which he spoke, he acted like he didn't know the name of the goddess “his” crimes blasphemed against. His motivation for the assault he was caught in the act of committing was money.

The hero's a guy from another planet (this is basically Star Trek OC fic, he's a Federation officer) who investigates alongside a nun named Laura, who explains local customs to him, in between waving her tragic past in his face so he'll fall in love with her. He does, and at the end she leaves the planet to be with him.

Laura is obviously the actual murderer.

She'd lived in the city all her life and had the ability to move around it without being paid any special attention or identified later - she even pointed out to the hero at one point that people simply recognized her as "a nun," and didn't pay attention to her face. She was the only character connected to both of the religious orders whose members were being murdered, and she could easily have gotten any of the victims to go to isolated places with her.

She was both the only genuine religious fanatic in the book, and the only character whose devotion seemed to include violence; while she was never shown hurting anyone or herself, she talked about dying and self-harm a lot, generally in conversations associated with her love for her goddess. And while she talked a lot about how much she loved the goddess, she had reason to be feel betrayed by her - the deaths and betrayals of loved ones, her disillusionment with her order.

The final goddamn straw is that she was the last person to have access to the money the ostensible culprit wanted.

The only way this book makes any sense is if Laura committed the murders herself, then set this guy up when the detective started paying too much attention to her. I feel absolutely certain that she killed him shortly after the events of the last page.

And yet I have no clue whether Shinn intended any of this. It doesn't seem like she did - but how can you be so bad at writing mysteries that you get your culprit wrong in such a thorough and tidy fashion? I don't think that's possible!

Yet it seems even more unlikely that Sharon fucking Shinn, of all people, wrote something this sneaky and sharp-edged. So it has to have been accidental. Right?

...

This is like how Summers at Castle Auburn was obviously about lesbians, but ended with two straight marriages between people who had previously shown almost no indication of romantic interest in one another. Maybe Shinn sometimes gets possessed by the malevolent spirit of Sarah Waters.

(Originally posted September 24, 2014.)

Jun. 23rd, 2014 04:14 pm
Heritage of Hastur is like some ominous fucked-up psychoanalytic artifact now.

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