bronze_ribbons: 18th century harpsichord (harpsichord)
[The subject line is from Lu Yu's "Autumn Thoughts," which Dawn Potter quotes at the end of her Thursday post.]

There is much going on that has been frustrating, frightening, or disheartening. But there has also been great happiness:

thirty years of friendship

My friend Daniel (left) was the groom at the wedding I attended in Brooklyn two weekends ago. We first met at a conference in 1985. (My honorary big brother, Steve, is the other guy in the photo. He was the officiant.)

My poem "O Clouds Unfold" has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.

7x20 featured five pieces last week...

half... well as five pieces back in October:

Co-cola salad...
painting spells...
mother interred...
Persian calligraphy...
Code Name Taurus...

On a fandom note -- Peter Wimsey sighting, y'all! a Soviet film poster currently at the Jewish Museum in New York. Which one of you is going to explain that? ;)
bronze_ribbons: 18th century harpsichord (harpsichord)
(and my urge this afternoon to close an envelope more securely than the adhesive seemed inclined to do):

From 2012 general

In Harriet's room, they found her gown lying on the table, together with the dossier. Peter picked up the book, examined the paper and string and the seals which secured them, each one stamped with the crouching cat and arrogant Wimsey motto.

"If that's been opened, I'll make a meal of hot sealing-wax."


16/5/11 14:44
bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (masha RG 09)
space shuttle crew a la Star Trek

Inklings/DLS materials on display at the Nashville Public Library

my reading last Friday

Javier Sicilia stops writing poetry
bronze_ribbons: 18th century harpsichord (harpsichord)
Um. This morning [ profile] antisoppist posted a Harriet/Bunter fic. There are ensuing strands of discussion in the comments carrying various quotients of illuminating, thought-provoking, and scarring-for-life potential. Which has led, of course, to this.

Title: Much More Original
Wordcount: ~ 200
Warnings: Waxplay and dubcon. I fancy that's NWS in most contexts.
spoiler cut for remaining notes )

Much More Original )
bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (federer wiping sweat from brow)
Note to self:

Do your best. Give others the benefit of the doubt.
Other people's hangups = their loss, not yours.
Good things happen when you encourage others.

(Some of the perennial kerfuffles have got me down. Hence reminding myself what has served me well over the years.)

And on that note, some recent and upcoming pleasures:

  • I totally have to restructure Day 6 of "The Second One Is Love." This is not a bad thing: it will lead to a better read, my beta rules, and at least I've realized this after sweating a mere 527 drops of blood through my forehead, as opposed to 5,982.

  • Lucie/Vera vs. Tathiana/JJ in doubles. (Translation for non-tennis nerds: high-strung drama queens on deck. I just now realized there's no video coverage until tomorrow, alas, but that means I'll get to whatever I should be doing instead, so win.)

  • Hit for Haiti - California edition. More beer and popcorn...

  • Dr. Fujiwara's Several Surprises, a "Women's Battle College, Isle of Skye" flash fic by Kat Beyer

  • [www.livejournal profile] Nineveh-uk's Moving On, in which Sylvia and Eiluned help Harriet sort out her possessions before her marriage.

  • The Other Way of the World by [www.livejournal profile] candle-beck, via a rec by [personal profile] schemingreader. I am generally not much for Holmes/Watson slash (nothing against it, just not my thing) but this is beautifully wrought, and by that I mean not only is Watson so much the match for Holmes (in multiple senses of that word), there are exchanges such as this:

    Holmes laughed, a crooked humourless thing that smuggled a chill up Watson's spine. "Some hours ago you laid claim to my soul, and now a bump on the head is enough to deter you? O faithless man," and Holmes darted in to steal a kiss off him, a surprise attack.

    Heat stained Watson's face, his mouth feeling swollen, and he stared at his hands fisted in Holmes's shirt so he would not have to look at the man himself.

    "Any other epithet I will take from you, but there is no justice in that one," Watson said quietly.

  • I have good coffee and rum-ginger brownies at hand, which should be fortification enough for raga-rehearsing and spreadsheet-wrangling.
  • bronze_ribbons: 18th century harpsichord (harpsichord)
    You'll always be the voice of Lord Peter Wimsey to me.
    bronze_ribbons: 18th century harpsichord (harpsichord)
    Nineveh-uk, a rustle in the branches mentioned it being your birthday. I fear that St. George/Charles remains beyond me, but hope Ivan/Jerry will do as a token offering.

    Title: Running, They Never Run From It Away (pace Donne)
    Pairing: Ivan Vorpatril/the 17th Duke of Denver (Viscount St. George in Wimsey canon)
    Rating: G
    Words: 178
    Premise: I don't subscribe to the apocrypha that St. George bought it in WWII. At any rate, imagine both lads in their late 30s, a friendship developing over periodic hops in space/time by Lord Vorpatril...

    Ivan Vorpatril allowed himself to shiver once the door closed behind his companion's visitors. When Jerry raised an eyebrow at him, he said, "Your uncle's manservant. He reminds me a little too much of my cousin Gregor."

    "Oh? Does this Gregor mercilessly drench you in a cold, silent shower of you can do better than thises every time he sets eyes on you?" The words were as light as spun sugar, and as brittle as candy glass.

    "He doesn't bother with the you can do betters," Ivan said, his shoulders still hunched up. "These days, he just sends me onto the next 'little job' he needs done before I even get out a 'hello.'"

    Jerry sidled over to Ivan's chair, casually seating himself on one of the antique armrests. "Saying 'no' isn't an option?"

    Ivan said, helplessly, "It was what I was born to do."

    Jerry glanced at the coat of arms on the firescreen, the familiar cat and three mice courant forever mocking him. He placed his hands on Ivan's shoulders as he murmured, "I really do understand."
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (Jose Calisto harpsichord)
    Earlier this year, [ profile] marginaliana won my offer to write a custom villanelle. Her prompts included "LPW, Peter reflecting on the way that his work leads to someone being put to death" and
    "LPW, Bunter and Harriet's relationship." Herewith...

    A man cannot help what he deduces... )

    Thank you again to [ profile] marginaliana for contributing to the cause!
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (houndbunny)
    Nineveh-uk has posted another bit of Sayers-inspired brilliance, this time featuring Bunter and tissue-paper. Work-safe.

    Marginalina linked to the Yuletide brainstorming post; I clicked. That crashing sound you hear in the background is my resolve to stay out of fests this year colliding with the possibility of prompting some good FAKE fic. More on that in a sec.

    My original shortlist + runners-up is on page 7 of the comments therein, but I had a three-hour drive earlier today, which meant I had time to ponder what I really want. So the fandoms I currently plan to nominate are looking more like this:

    1. FAKE - Sanami Matoh
    2. Haru wo Daiteita - Youka Nitta
    3. Copenhagen - Michael Frayn
    4. Muppets
    5. Chicago Manual of Style
    6. Vicky Bliss - Elizabeth Peters

    Some thoughts (in reverse order) on fic I'd like to see, whether via Yuletide or some other panfandom challenge or me-writing-it-myself-during-some-future-bout-of-insomnia (and yes, this is partly so I don't forget all this when it's time to write my "Dear Yuletide Santa" letter -- although it'll definitely need trimming so as not to scare whomever's assigned to me out of her or his gourd). I guess I should cut for spoilers for some of these...

    6. Vicky Bliss )

    5. CMOS - oh, the possibilities. CMOS/MLA bondage or hatesex, CMOS/APA, two CMOS rules together, one single CMOS rule... mwahahahahaha. I really am not kidding when I say that 17.169 would lend itself nicely to an extended exploration of UST.

    4. Muppets. Heh. Coming up with potential guest-stars (which may or may not violate the "no crossovers" guideline - I'm just brainstorming here) was a welcome mental break. Possibilities, in rough order of preference:

  • anyone from Tenth Doctor Who or Torchwood (actor or character)

  • Cthulhu or Hastur from User-Friendly (and dudes, current storyline involves the Large Hadron Collider. Whee!)

  • anyone from Haru wo Daiteita

  • anyone from Neil Gaiman's Sandman series

  • Lord Peter Wimsey. Bonus for scenes showing Bunter dealing with the insanity

  • Irene Adler

  • Jonathan Papelbon

  • 3. Copenhagen. More discussion and/or flashbacks among those involved.

    2. Haru wo Daiteita: Yoshizumi or Shimizu gen; Iwaki/Katou PWP...

    1. FAKE - some possibilities:

  • Ryo/Dee hurt/comfort

  • Dee and Jim Campbell friendship fic

  • Ryo's early twenties - answering questions from Dee, Carol, and/or Bikky about his time in the Army (if that's what he did), or Dee mulling over how Ryo's Army habits/skills show up in his current habits, or how Ryo met his bomb-making friend (if it wasn't via the Army)

  • Ryo and Dee discuss and compare their knowledge of bombs

  • Kai and/or Louise (second season) - what are their stories?

  • The 27th precinct heads to Bikky and Carol's wedding. Craziness and crises meet them there.

  • second season spoiler )

    And now for the mini-manifesto... my personal preferences re: FAKE fic )
    Ok, that's more than I meant to say... and I'm not done yet. Some other day. The to-post list also includes a delightful German translation of "Those I Can Save" (courtesy of LJ:incapability87), a couple of audiofics (once I stop coughing long enough to record them), some recs of FAKE fics (especially ones not in the usual archives), and the ever-floating raft of to-writes (once they're written, heh). But for now it's back to the comma mines. *hugs to all who wants 'em*
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (Default)
    100 words for Nineveh-uk, who wanted something about Cherubino and women:

    Voi che sapete che cosa e amor... )

    Snape and Salieri. PG. 200 words. Triggered indirectly by Nineveh_uk's prompt (because of the Mozart) and a [ profile] westernredcedar comment (because it got me mulling over the Snape-tropes I tend to revisit...):
    When Snape regains consciousness, he's still on a floor, but it's covered in an expensive carpet... )

    Teddy and Bunter. 369-ish words (a prequel to this):

    Teddy is not proud of how he broke off his engagement with Victoire. )
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (Default)
    All details under the cut, since the character's a spoiler for the series.

    Read more... )
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (wirite)
    [As with the other lists, not quite complete, but a start. I hadn't realised it until just now, but today's the fourth anniversary of the first drabble I ever posted, IIRC]

    ["TDiR" = The Dark Is Rising (Susan Cooper)
    "Wimseyverse" = Lord Peter Wimsey/Harriet Vane series (Dorothy L. Sayers)
    "Vorkosiganverse" = Miles Vorkosigan series (Lois McMaster Bujold)]

    Read more... )


    16/2/08 11:29
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (sheepdog)
    Nineveh-uk has written Crookshanks/Ahasuerus teenyfic for me. *purrs*

    (There is Bunter re-enacting Dr. Who with the Wimsey-sprogs, "Zombie Honeymoon," and other gems embedded elsewhere in the comments as well.) [ETA: And Peter Wimsey encountering Lucius Malfoy...!]
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (Default)
    Wimsey fen! I have been gazing at Lord Peter reincarnate the past two hours: he is a French accompanist named Antoine Palloc. None of the photos I could find on the Web convey the full effect, alas - blond hair, laughter lines around the eyes, slight build, same height as the singer, beautiful hands, the combination of control and "fantastical" manner, eyebrows quirking on cue, superb rapport with the singer (Jennifer Larmore), and he even whistled (as part of Charles Ives's "Memories").

    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (bookload)
  • Swooop's Viennese Singer/Sir Impey Biggs ficlet is now up. *beams*

  • Someone found my old Heffalump/Snape wronglet via the [ profile] snarry_reader.

  • Linnets and Valerians by Elizabeth Goudge (set in 1912, published in 1964, and illustrated by one Ian Ribbons). cut for potential spoiler )
  • Tags:
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (ribbons)
    Happy birthday, my dear. May you enjoy good health, good books, and many other felicities the whole year 'round.

    [100 words, G, Alys/Simon with a hint of past Bunter/Alys. ;-) ]

    There was a vase of red flowers in their room. The bouquet had looked perfect to him when he turned on the lights, but it looked even better after Alys glided up to it and rearranged three of the blooms.

    Her compulsive competence contained an invisible edge that intrigued him, but he'd held off asking where she'd honed her skills. Later, she showed him several vid pix of herself dressed in a peculiar costume, carefully rinsing and drying porcelain ornaments.

    "Someone who understood you took those," he murmured.

    "Yes," she said, and she let her head rest against his shoulder.
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (wirite)
    On the sixth day of Christmas, my loves presented to me a Sir Impey/Viennese Opera Singer ficlet (from Swooop, who spoils me rotten) and a bag of really terrific tea (from [ profile] westernredcedar), which helped make for a very pleasant end to 2007. At midnight, I was sipping my second cup of tea and going through some pages at Distributed Proofreaders. (I fell hard for George A. Birmingham's A Padre in France (1918), an account of working as a British Army chaplain during WWI.)

    On the seventh day of Christmas, I didn't do much in the way of writing or reading, but I did walk the dog and parts of my house are now less ooky. I also looked over a chapter of a friend's novel-in-progress and typed up a quasi-detailed crit of it. [ profile] regan_v rec'd my Snape/Lupin in Chicago fic. (And speaking of recs, Nineveh posted an excellent cross-section of Wimsey recs at crack_van last month. (ObDisclosure: she says very nice things about Bringing His Lordship Around and its companion drabble.)

    On the eighth day of Christmas, I woke up way too early, partly fretting over things not yet done and partly musing over whether I had gotten too detailed in the crit. It's just occurred to me that, being by nature a poet, I am not the most efficient writer or critiquer of prose, because I operate primarily at the micro-level of words rather than the macro-level of narrative structure. I've tried following the popular dictum of gutting out the proverbial "shitty first draft" and then going back to finetune everything, and it not only doesn't work for me, it kills the fun.

    It's a different ballgame when one is writing on contract; I can force myself to "get it done, fix it later" when my mortgage payment depends on me turning in x thousand words or y hundred slides on time. But when I'm writing "for the love," spew-drafts just end up wasting my time, because I tend to discover the truth about my characters in how they (fail to) talk and appear to each other (which is how I repeatedly end up delighted when they say things I hadn't expected...). I know that many writers do a lot of world-building and character-sketching before they ever write the first line of their stories, and I imagine I should try more of that myself - but, again, I work instinctively at micro- rather than macro-level storycrafting, and that's how I've sometimes discovered I've got a plot on the wrong track: when I stall out trying to come up with the right words, or if I try to skate past a scene that really needs to take place onstage, that's when I'm most likely to realize I need to reconsider what I had in mind. I don't see these things at the macro-level, because there, everything looks like it's plausible; it's when I tell a character, "You need to say this now" and she retorts, "You're making me sound like a SNL parody of a Bronte heroine" that I realize, oops. (This was my deal-breaker when it came to the seventh Harry Potter book: I realize Lupin's "It is I" speeches are a very small part of an exceedingly long book, but the combination of melodramatic and illogical is still too much for me. I cannot deal with it, even though I know a number of intelligent people who aren't fussed by it at all. Chacun à son goût.)

    As Bear often points out, there is no one method that works for everyone: you have to go with whatever gets you to sit in the damn chair and write. Spew-drafts work for a lot of people, many of them far more successful than I, but for me, they're pretty much the equivalent of riding an exercise bike with a too-low setting: they take up too much time for too little reward.

    Which makes it an interesting challenge, working with someone else's rough draft. I tend to be impatient with other poets who try to do this with me, because I don't see it as the best use of my time: I don't want to be distracted with things the writer already recognizes as wrong and knows how to fix; for me, the primary usefulness of a beta is to point out the things the writer doesn't realize aren't quite right; to help the writer grope his/her way towards solving the things s/he does realize are off but can't suss out how to resolve; and to catch the typos the writer's missed because they've gone over the same pages too many times. But many people -- perhaps the majority -- don't share this expectation, because it's concept first and cleanup later for them. This in no way means their methods/expectations are wrong, but it does explain why some critique arrangements work out significantly better for me than others. (Though I will add that, over the years, the biggest problem by far has been people flaking out on reciprocation. I don't automatically crit with strings attached, but if the arrangement was proposed as an exchange, I will get annoyed if you fail to grant my work the attention I gave to yours.) I've done best with writers whose egos are as strong as mine and who are as no-holds-barred about getting every last punctuation mark right.

    So, fearing I'd gotten too micro with what should've been a macro-crit prompted part of this, but reading Justine Larbalestier's post on rewriting is what pushed it into becoming this morning's morning pages [1], as it were. And now it's time to finish breakfast and get to work.

    [1] Not actually a habit of mine, but sometimes pre-work blogging like this ends up performing the same function.

    [Partially x-posted to my personal journal.]
    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (Default)
    So behind on life... which didn't stop me from sneaking a look at this year's batch of Wimseyfics at Yuletide. Many of them are well-written and thought-provoking; my personal favorites are belatedly listing them under a spoiler cut (ack, sorry!) )

    I also couldn't resist looking at the Snupin/Bill/Fleur that sent [ profile] westernredcedar into guacamole-invoking gasps of ecstasy. Go read her rec and then go read the fic, which is both hot as hell and made me laugh out loud. I am not in the habit of betting my body parts on who wrote what fic (since (a) that's not quite my style and (b) I am so very often very wrong) but I will observe that there is a killer writer on my friendlist who is and this fic strikes me as something very much up her alley.

    (I'm figuring that oughta propel some of you to go read it now. Heh.)

    Also, the ever-generous and wickedly talented tbranch continues to humor me: I now have a Fleur & Whomping Willow portrait (gen) to go with the Karkaroff & Whomping Willow he drew for me back at Lumos. *beams* Thank you, T!


    bronze_ribbons: snapshot of me in standing bow (Default)

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