Fic Rec: The Printer Is Jammed

Jun. 30th, 2015 07:12 pm
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Posted by swissmarg

Title: The Printer Is Jammed
Author: startrekto221b
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 40,336 words
Rating: General
Warnings: None
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: John is a disgruntled customer who just wants his money back for a shoddy printer Harry ordered for him off of a catalogue. Sherlock is a bored customer service rep working the summer he has off from Oxford. They are both about to get more than they bargained for.

Reccer's comments: This fic is like one of those recursive images, only in written form. The author has written about John and Sherlock writing about William Scott and Arthur Conan (who are really just avatars for themselves) having adventures from the BBC series while they (John and Sherlock) have adventures from the BBC series and are in turn written about by fans who ship ‘Willthur’ as well as Johnlock. Or in other words, life imitates art imitates life imitates art imitates life. There is also a RPF layer, with Steven Moffat, Mark Gatiss, and even mention of "some Barneyflump Curlyflap guy” and “that guy from The Office”, although if you aren’t into RPF don’t worry, it’s little more than name-dropping.

It’s very slow-burn with a great mix of humor, angst, fluff, and mystery, although I was good and frustrated by the time John and Sherlock finally got together! The story is told exclusively in an epistolary format, but the author has mixed it up with emails, online chats, text messages, surveillance reports, interview transcripts, and blog posts to keep things lively. The whole thing is highly entertaining and creative, with twists and tweaks that kept me unsure how things would turn out right up to the end.

As a side note, the fic is posted on AO3 with a General rating, but there is a bit of smut and discussion of dubcon and drug abuse which may be sensitive for some readers.
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Posted by tripleransom

Title: The Skirts of the Safecracker
Author: Ceefax
Pairing: None.
Length: 3,148 words
Rating: T
Warnings: None
Verse: ACD Canon
Author's summary: Cross-dressing silliness featuring Holmes, Watson and Lestrade.
Reccer's comments: I usually go in for a little heavier stuff, partly because humor is so hard to sustain while keeping everyone in character. This fic manages to do it quite nicely, plus it's written completely in dialogue - another tricky thing to sustain.
It's just pure fluff with a touch of Victorian stage melodrama. I giggled all the way through and I'll bet you will too.

Something to save for

Jun. 30th, 2015 03:15 pm
james_davis_nicoll: (Default)
[personal profile] james_davis_nicoll
I'm spending a lot of time in libraries these days, places it's not practical to haul my desk top. love my phone for reading, browsing, posting and making notes but for certain aspects of creating reviews a small laptop would be better.

Basically this would be for writing and light browsing (so, unlike the behemoth I bought in '03) it needs to be WiFi capable (1). Ideally, light, durable, cheap.

Open to suggestions re which model I should be considering.

1: the behemoth runs Windows '95, possibly no longer cutting edge. And the screen is dead, not a plus.

Money, money, money

Jun. 30th, 2015 08:04 pm
nineveh_uk: Illustration that looks like Harriet Vane (Harriet)
[personal profile] nineveh_uk
I have been following the current outbreak of the ongoing global financial crisis, i.e. the events in Greece, with horrified fascination. I have little to say about how to solve the current situation beyond my standard "I wouldn't start from here". By this point, there is surely no short-term outcome that isn't going to very painful for many of the Greek population. The only possible positive outcome is to be found in identifying the course that works for the country in the long-term. What that is I have no idea, and I'm clearly not alone, but it is going to be very, very complicated. We have got here not simply with faults on both sides, but faults on dozens of sides. When would finding a solution ideally have started - 1910 or so? Certainly no later than 1945.

It's a lovely evening and I'm going for a walk. I wonder what will have changed by the time I get back. And what this is like to follow when it's your own life at stake.
[syndicated profile] ktempest_feed

Posted by Tempest

Rise Together

If you’re not a person who follows news about gaming or gamers, you might have missed a thing that happened. Tauriq Moosa, a media critic, left social media due to sustained harassment over something he wrote on the Internet. Yesterday, Moosa wrote something else that I want you to read. I’m quoting extensively. Still, read the whole thing.

Lots of folks are trying to show me support. I really appreciate it, but what I would appreciate it more if you took your energy in fighting battles with people who don’t care about me to raise the voices of minority folk. Maybe use this time to try get more people employed who aren’t straight white men.

Instead of the collective being one that shouts down marginalised folk, let the default collective be one that raises us up and doesn’t let us be drowned out by bizarrely angry and dismissive others. The status quo is broken and solidarity for marginalised voices should be a constant for progress, for looking and moving forward; solidarity shouldn’t only exist for when things dissolve. Things are already broken and supporting one another is how we continue.

As you might imagine, I know Moosa’s feel on this one. And I agree 100% that the status quo should be about raising up voices and not focusing on whatever asshole flavor of the month comes along to push us down. I’m not saying don’t argue with them and don’t challenge them–you can’t change their minds. I have proof. You might convince someone watching, though–I’m saying don’t let that be the whole of your work.

There are some defenders (not just of me, in general) that I can count on to ride out of the darkness and skewer obvious bigots on their lance. It’s not hard. And it makes everyone feel better. But then how much work do these defenders do when there’s no prejudice monster to slay? How much public work? How much energy do they expend on taunting the enemy vs touting marginalized artists?

The SFF community has quite a few popular people with giant platforms, and the majority of these people are generous with their platforms. Because the majority are great people! However, I wish that those big platform people would take a minute to look through their last 40 promotion/signal-boosting posts, their last 40 shares on Facebook, their last 100 tweets, and count up how many times marginalized voices get the boost vs people from the dominant culture.

You might be surprised by what you find[1].

Don’t cry about it, though. Seriously, I do not want to hear you crying about how you tried and you do sometimes and you didn’t mean to and and and. What I want from you is to commit yourself to doing better in the future.

Make conscious choices to promote more marginalized voices. Seek out more books, short stories, music, art and the artists and writers who create them. More guest posts, more cover reveals, more vlog embeds, more links, more GIFs. Write thoughtful responses and companion pieces to media criticism that focuses on the issues marginalized people face, and always link back prominently. Give credit to other people’s ideas loudly, in boldface, so that it’s harder for people to say only you and others like you are the expert voices on this stuff. Don’t feel like you know enough or know enough people to do more? Ask your friends, ask the Carl Brandon Society, ask Twitter. Go for balance, or go for imbalance in favor of folks not from the dominant culture. Keep a literal tally so you know for sure.

Take all that anger you feel when someone like Tauriq Moosa is hounded off of social media or when someone like me gets dozens of hate-filled tweets and turn it into a cavalcade of attention for artists and writers who need it (that includes the artists and writers under attack).

Side benefit: it really pisses off bigoted haters when the person they’re trying to tear down gets built up by people with more social and cultural juice than they have.

Main benefit: it gives marginalized voices a better chance at recognition, which could lead to more opportunities for them to get paid for what they do and thus do more of it.

Footnotes

  1. Or, you may find that you’re already building up more marginalized voices than not. Awesome! I appreciate the heck out of you. Do me a favor, though? Nudge your high profile friends, please. Thanks.

I Challenge You To Support and Signal-Boost Marginalized Voices is a post from: K. Tempest Bradford

(no subject)

Jun. 30th, 2015 01:46 pm
telophase: (Default)
[personal profile] telophase
Me: Hey, here's a new way we could traumatize Sora!

Toby: That's some Silent Hill shit right there that is.
[syndicated profile] walkingthepeak_feed

Posted by Lee Firth

I've been posting a lot more often on the blog recently, that's because I've been walking and going out with my support workers at every opportunity for the last two months. I need to keep busy; something happened in May that I'm having difficulties coping with. I'm really struggling to self-actualise at the moment and I'm needing a lot of support and feedback. Basically, I wake up every morning not knowing who I am and what my place in the world is, what I need to do to feel that I'm contributing to society...how I can become the best person I'm capable of being.

I'm stumbling about in the dark and so I've decided that the best short-term solution is to keep busy, tiring myself out, both physically and mentally...leaving me with little time or energy left to fret about things or do anything stupid.

So...I went for a trip out to Hardwick Hall today with Siobhan, one of my support workers. I'd checked online and there wouldn't just be the Hall and gardens to look at though, there's also extensive parkland areas with lots of walking routes.

Hardwick Old Hall is nearby, less then a hundred yards away actually, and I would have liked to see both sites. However, the Old Hall is managed by English Heritage and we're only members of The National Trust and I wasn't prepared to pay £13 for the both of us to visit the ruins.

It's situations like this that really pisses me off about contemporary Britain; not only having to pay once, but then you're expected to pay again. Why on Earth are there two rival competing heritage organisations in England? 

We arrived at Hardwick just after eleven o'clock and were told that the hall was closed, as it is every Monday and Tuesday, and so we'd only be able to look at the gardens and the parkland. I told the staff who worked there that it wasn't obvious on their webpage that the property wasn't open today....they disagreed and thought I was some sort of time travelling saboteur. 

Here's a link to the page stating the times and openings; in order to find out that it doesn't open on a Tuesday you need to scroll down the page...something that's not obvious - and shouldn't be necessary. THIS INFORMATION NEEDS TO BE PROMINENTLY DISPLAYED.


We still enjoyed ourselves though; the weather was lovely - a little too hot really though, especially for Siobhan. I bought a new [secondhand] camera yesterday after breaking my previous one on Saturday, and so had a lot of fun experimenting with its features...and took a lot of photographs.











After we'd eaten our sandwiches we drove down the hill to the bottom part of Hardwick Park and walked round the fishing lakes and through some very nice meadows.





At this point I noticed that Siobhan was struggling a bit in the heat; she's a few years older than me and walks with a slight limp anyhow, and so I decided to abandon my plan to call at Creswell Crags on the way back and walk through the gorge, having a look at the caves.

I formulated an alternative plan; cream teas at Darfaulds Garden Centre, and ice creams at Langold Lake Country Park. At the garden centre we sat right next to a 'geranium wall;. Everyone seemed to be very impressed by it - we were told that the set-up would cost £900.


sylvaine: Sakura looking badass. ([anime:Naruto] Sakura)
[personal profile] sylvaine posting in [community profile] fanart_recs
Fandom: Naruto
Characters/Pairing/Other Subject: Sabaku no Gaara/Uzumaki Naruto
Content Notes/Warnings: none
Medium: digital
Artist on DW/LJ: [livejournal.com profile] kosmonauttihai
Artist Website/Gallery: on pixiv | [deviantart.com profile] kosmonauttihai | artist website | original art tag on tumblr | fanart tag on tumblr | art ship ask tumblr: [tumblr.com profile] ask-narugaa
Why this piece is awesome: This is one of my favourite artists and definitely my favourite NaruGaa artist. It took me a long time to decide on which piece of art to rec here, but in the end I settled on this. (Either way you should definitely check out the rest of the ask blog and also their art tags if you're so inclined!) I really like the black and white shading of the comic, and the topic of the comic - a short chance to catch up after Naruto and Co. save Gaara from the Akatsuki at the beginning of Shippuuden - is adorable. Most of all, though, I adore expressions in this comic - the excitement and the tenderness and the surprise - and also the style of the characters - the artist has taken the canon characters and reinterpreted them in their own style and I think it works fantastically well and makes the characters five times more endearing to me.
Link: on tumblr

The Just City, by Jo Walton

Jun. 30th, 2015 09:55 am
rachelmanija: (Books: old)
[personal profile] rachelmanija
Apollo wants to understand why Daphne would rather be a tree than have sex with him. Athena wants to find out what would happen if she took everyone throughout time who has ever prayed to her to let them live in Plato’s Republic, gave them a doomed island, a bunch of robots, and children to raise as per Plato’s ideas, and told them to go for it. A young Victorian lady named Ethel renames herself Maia and devotes herself to the Just City. Two children, taken from the slave markets and given to the Just City, come to opposite conclusions about its worth.

Out of all of Jo Walton’s strange premises, this one takes the cake. Even more than “Framley Parsonage, but everyone’s a dragon.” But I love that she thinks of ideas like this, has the chops to carry them out, and is supported by a publisher who will publish whatever bizarre book she chooses to write. The Just City is a terrific book that I can’t imagine anyone else writing.

It’s a novel of ideas in the very best sense, full of complex and interesting questions with no easy answers, and populated by three-dimensional characters who care deeply about and are profoundly affected by the issues at play. (The issues include but aren’t limited to consent, free will, nature vs. nurture, whether the ends justify the means, and how idealistic movements and planned communities succeed and fail.) Since I grew up in a planned community, I found the book particularly interesting. It does not escape Walton that one of the most toxic issues in a planned community or progressive movement is the willingness to sacrifice vulnerable members for the supposed good of the whole, nor that the same community can be a utopia for one person and a dystopia for their neighbor.

This is the first of a trilogy, but comes to a conclusion that’s open-ended yet satisfying, shocking but inevitable in retrospect. I guessed where it was going in general, but was completely surprised by the details.

You don’t need to be familiar with or care about Plato’s Republic to read this. The book explains everything you need to know. It’s much more about larger issues of utopia/dystopia than about the Republic specifically, though the actual specifics are from the Republic. Note that it contains rape, slavery, child harm, and other disturbing things, and also characters endorsing all sorts of terrible opinions. This is not a book to read if you want the voice of the author interjecting to assure you that terrible things are terrible. It’s very much a book where many opinions are presented and it’s left to the readers to draw their own conclusions.

If you intend to read this, avoid reviews. There’s several plot twists that will be more satisfying if you don’t know about them in advance. Spoilers are fine in comments.

The sequel, The Philosopher Kings, is out now.

The Just City

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The collected poems from my descent into madness year spent writing daily poems are now available from Lulu as the cheapest 330-page book they would let me make ($16.20). If that's too pricey, you can also get it from Lulu as a free download, or just click on the "a poem every day" tag to read them here. But if you did buy one, that'd be awesome.

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