Femslashex is live!

Oct. 26th, 2014 12:31 am
aphrodite_mine: barrettes in reddish hair read 'feminist killjoy' (random - feminist killjoy)
[personal profile] aphrodite_mine
There are a LOT of great-looking fic and art to browse through, holy gosh.

I wrote:

Feel the rest out (Fingersmith, post-canon, Sue/Maud)

and

If you're gonna shoot me down, do it gently (Masters of Sex, Lillian/Virginia)

So far, I've really only read my gifts, but am super happy!

scintilla10 (HEY!!) wrote How to Win at Book Club (Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Amy/Rosa) which made me laugh out LOUD and clap with glee

and Missy wrote me a sweet little treat, Hey Ballerina (Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Amy/Rosa)
[syndicated profile] linesandcolors_feed

Posted by Charley Parker

Cymon and Iphigenia, Lord Frederic Leighton
Cymon and Iphigenia, Lord Frederic Leighton

On Google Art Project; high-resolution downloadable file on Wikimedia Commons; original is in the Art gallery of New South Wales.

Victorian artist Frederic Leighton brings his finessed painting skill to bear on a sensual and erotic portrayal of a tale from The Decameron — the famous 14th century Italian book of stories, in which an unrefined young man named Galesus — who had been renamed “Cymon”, meaning “beast”, because of his uncouth nature — is transformed by the etherial beauty of the sleeping maiden Iphigenia into a student of beauty and culture.

Yeah. Right.

Beautiful painting, though.

Hans Andersen Brendekilde

Oct. 26th, 2014 03:44 am
[syndicated profile] linesandcolors_feed

Posted by Charley Parker

Hans Andersen Brendekilde, 19th century figures in landscape
Hans Andersen Brendekilde was a Danish painter active in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

His actual surname was Andersen, but he took on the name of his home village to avoid being confused with another artist. He originally painted scenes of social realism, showing the struggles of workers and farmers, then moved into religious subjects.

Brendekilde is best known, however, for his bucolic scenes of rural village life. Often, these take the form of landscapes with figures, primarily children and women, walking through woods and fields.

In these, I think of him more as a landscape artist, and I see in his work a kinship with fellow Danish painter Peder Mørk Mønstead.

the best caramel I have ever made

Oct. 26th, 2014 01:08 am
rushthatspeaks: (signless: be that awesome)
[personal profile] rushthatspeaks
Sometime last year [personal profile] jinian gave me a little box of caramels from a company in Seattle who are primarily chocolatiers and do caramels on special occasions. The theme of the box was 'mirepoix', and it had a caramelized onion caramel, a fennel caramel, a celery caramel, and a carrot caramel. I must admit to eying it rather dubiously.

I had to give away the onion one because I am allergic to onions. The fennel one tasted of licorice. I like licorice, so that was fine. The celery one was exactly the sort of thing you put in a box of gimmicky caramels to carry out the mirepoix theme.

The carrot one filled my eyes with a wild surmise as I started muttering things about why isn't this object in every store in the country how did they do this how can I recreate this I cannot have this only once in my life it is neither humanly tolerable nor fair.

It does not taste a thing like carrot. I took my version to a party tonight and asked people to guess the mystery ingredient. The guesses I got ranged from 'booze of some kind?' to 'nuts of some kind?' to, by far the most common, 'I have no idea but this stuff is amazing'. Carrot-haters will like this. You can't tell what it is even if you already know. The best way I can describe the taste is that it is caramel, but better somehow. I can't even really describe the direction in which it is better. It's just better. If this had been genuinely my idea, I would be seriously considering starting a small candy company right about now.

Carrot Coriander Caramel (makes about fifty bite-sized caramels)

4 medium carrots
2 tsp. canola or vegetable oil, not an oil that has taste
1 heaped tsp. ground coriander
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
5 tbsp. butter
about 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup light corn syrup, or other corn syrup, molasses, malt syrup, whatever of this sort you have lying about

a baking sheet
two large sturdy pots
a bowl
a potato masher
a ladle
a strainer
a candy thermometer if you roll that way
a dish to pour the caramel into-- I have had good results with either a square Pyrex casserole, heavily buttered, or a square silicon cake dish, lightly oiled
wax paper

Preheat the oven to 425 F. Peel and end the carrots and cut them in 1-inch rounds. Halve the rounds lengthwise. Oil the baking sheet.

Put the carrot pieces on the baking sheet and sprinkle the coriander over them. Muddle the whole thing with your hands until the carrot pieces are evenly coated in both coriander and oil and are in a single layer. Roast for 22 minutes or until a fork goes in, but not very easily.

When the carrots are cool enough to touch, put them in the bowl and pour over the cream. Make sure all carrots are submerged. Cover the bowl, but do not refrigerate.

I left mine two hours and I think it was enough, though longer couldn't hurt. Anyway, you can go do something else in the interim. Oh and oil or butter your dish.

Pour the carrots and cream into a pot over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, then turn down to simmer. Simmer it about seven minutes, and then go after the carrots with a potato masher, not too vigorously (you don't want splashes). They will not entirely deliquesce.

Ladle the liquid through a strainer and back into the pot, pressing firmly but not fiercely. Set aside the solids-- they are creamed carrots, and can be eaten, with added salt and pepper, as a side dish at your next several meals. Melt the butter and the salt into the simmering liquid, and stir. Note: salt is really to taste, just try not to burn your tongue. Once everything's stirred together, take this pot off the heat and set it aside.

In the other pot, put the corn syrup, sugar, and water over high heat, and boil it stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Then stop stirring and wait until it goes light golden, swirling the pan gently every so often. This will only be about 2-3 minutes.

Then add the cream mixture. It will froth up at you wildly; that's normal. Cook, stirring frequently, until-- well, if you have a candy thermometer it should say 248 F. But I do this by eye, which means a jelly jar of very cold water at my elbow, in which a drop of caramel should instantly form a soft ball. Honestly, though, if you want to learn candy stages by eye I suggest learning on jam, as the failure modes remain entirely edible.

Pour the hot caramel into the dish, cover the top, and refrigerate for at least two hours but this is the phase where I wandered off for the night and that works too.

The next day, or when you get back to them, butter the blade of a sharp knife. Score the lines you intend to cut along before going back over them to cut squares of caramel. Wrap each one in a much bigger piece of wax paper than you think you need, pile the wrapped ones in a bowl and refrigerate again until serving. You will wind up sticky to the elbows but that is, I'm afraid, just one of those things. Store in the fridge; they keep for weeks and they like to try to melt.

Murkworks power is DOWN

Oct. 25th, 2014 10:10 pm
annathepiper: (Hard Day)
[personal profile] annathepiper
For the benefit of anyone who didn't see me post to the social networks, the power at the Murkworks has gone down in tonight's windstorm. I've reported the outage to Puget Sound Energy, but no estimate yet on when we'll be back online. Given that they're up to over 70,000 customers with reported outages, I think they're in for a busy night. So we may be dark for a while.

We still have outgoing connectivity, but to be on on the safe side Dara has taken down our servers. So our web and mail connectivity is out, as well as the MUSH. Apologies to all who have resources hosted with us. We'll bring stuff back up as soon as we have power restored.

Meanwhile, Dreamwidth/Livejournal people, keep an eye on my posts on these two places. People who follow me on the social networks, I'll be posting updates to Facebook, Google+, and Twitter as well as long as we have backup power for our laptops and devices. And I'm reachable at my gmail address, annathepiper, if you need to send me email.

Writing Chapter 20 via lamplight, woo!

Yuletide Letter (placeholder)

Oct. 25th, 2014 11:48 pm
spatz: frost covered red leaves on frozen grass (frost leaves)
[personal profile] spatz
(Is it just me, or does the signups period feel really short this year?)

Sunday.

Oct. 26th, 2014 03:22 pm
splodgenoodles: (Default)
[personal profile] splodgenoodles
Her Fuzziness seems pretty placid now. Every so often she asks for food and she's really only accepting lightly beaten eggs. Mostly she's just sleeping under the couch, emerging occasionally to totter here or there just to sit somewhere else for a while. She's staring at birds through the screen door at the moment.

She climbed into the (empty) bath yesterday. Twice. She's never done that before, but she seemed to like it in there. I had been having a bath earlier yesterday when she came in and stared at me and I realised she'd not seen me in the bath before. Maybe she finally realised that a bath is a thing to be sat in, and decided to test it out.

I haven't given her the appetite stimulant she usually gets every third day: it makes her jumpy for a few hours and in the past, that seemed like a reasonably price to pay for two and three-quarter days of better appetite and a considerably longer life of good quality. It doesn't now: the last few times she's had it, it has not improved her appetite significantly and I just want her to be comfortable now. There's no long term benefit in giving her that pill. I ...think... that's the right decision.

~~~

I am spending today alternating between playing with pencils and doing light physical stuff.

(no subject)

Oct. 25th, 2014 08:49 pm
staranise: A star anise floating in a cup of mint tea (Default)
[personal profile] staranise
I am weary today. I went out and about doing errands and trying to keep one step ahead of a viciously black mood--the kind I've handled as much as I can, and the rest is living through it. My brain will go HOMG WHAT IF YOU ARE IMPERFECT??? DOOOOOOM!!! but I try to pay it no mind.

I invited all... three... people I know socially to pumpkin carving tomorrow afternoon, and then my roomies proposed more pumpkin carving tomorrow night. This is good because if no one shows up (no one having gotten back to me about it) I will still get to be social and carve pumpkins instead of being a tragical sad panda.

Also today I found a gorgeous cat scratcher for sale for $20, and it came in such a lovely thick double-walled cardboard box that I carved doors and windows out of the box and made it into a cat castle. It needs to be painted and outfitted with cushions, but the cat is already intrigued.

SHarecon

Oct. 25th, 2014 07:50 pm
franzeska: (Default)
[personal profile] franzeska
Oh, so many con reports that I have not written from cons past. Doh. So I will write my relatively modest SHarecon one before I entirely forget.

This was my third SHarecon. For the first two, I lived in NYC and took the train down to the DC area. This time, I flew. You might be wondering if it's really worth it to fly across the country for a Starsky & Hutch con. It is. SHarecon is a really awesome con at which I always have a fantastic time. (Yes, I do write con reports for reasons other than kvetching.) It's a tiny con, warm and friendly, and very interested in "New Recruits". I can truthfully say that the existence of this con is 100% responsible for keeping me paying attention to Starsky & Hutch, however vague that attention may sometimes be.

This year was also a blast because of the unexpected (to me anyway) presence of [personal profile] dorinda, [personal profile] przed, and Deb Walsh. I had just been bitching about the lack of findable I Spy vids online, so running into [personal profile] przed right after that was amusing. We had a nice chat about the hosting woes of vidders. Deb I hadn't seen in ages, not since Media West, a con I went to several years ago and haven't managed to make it back to because it is irritatingly located and I am broke. Of course, I failed to interview her yet again. Oops. I blame it on SHarecon just being so much fun that I never have time to drag people away from the festivities. Deb is fascinating to talk to because, like a lot of people at SHarecon, she's an oldschool zine fandom person, but, unlike most of them, she used to only be into gen. The history of gen zines is a gaping hole in my interview pattern.

Dance party and vids )

LJ *does* have a clear successor, and that successor is Tumblr. )
yhlee: Drop Ships from Race for the Galaxy (RTFG)
[personal profile] yhlee
- recent reading
Ben Bova. The Craft of Writing Science Fiction That Sells. ©1994 but reads somewhat older in philosophy, probably due to its apparently being based on an older book ©1975 and 1981.

I read this book years ago and remembered liking it, but not details; happily, it has not been visited by the Suck Fairy, even though I have some points of disagreement with Bova. Bova is specifically concerned with hard science fiction of the type you would find in Analog, which he once edited, and in the more-or-less Campbellian tradition [1], which he sums up thus:
...at the core of every good [hard] science fiction story is the very fundamental faith that we can use our own intelligence to understand the universe and solve our problems. (8)

Now obviously this doesn't describe all the kinds of sf there are, but this is in fact a strand of sf. I like that Bova is up front about this, and throughout the book it's generally clear what his stance is. To take another example, he doesn't think highly of people who write tie-ins because he feels that not making up your own characters is a cheat, a stance I disagree with violently (I like fanfic, okay?), but he states his opinion clearly so you can navigate it as you will.

[1] I'm being approximate; I have some vague familiarity with the history of sf as a genre, but for anything specific I'd have to look stuff up.

The other thing about Bova is that he is most concerned with conveying craft, which is the teachable part of writing, as opposed to art. The areas he covers are character, background (setting/worldbuilding), conflict, plot, the specific problems posed by the novel, marketing (quite dated), and a catch-all chapter for ideas, style, and inspiration. He includes the complete text of four of his own stories and dissects them for the reader's benefit. I admit I couldn't stay awake for the first one, but I liked the other three as Analog-style stories of an older type, and found the analyses illuminating. The checklists at the end of each chapter are also helpful.

A note: Bova favors clear, plain style, which works well for this type of fiction and, apparently, this type of how-to book. I found his prose enjoyable.

Finally, my favorite anecdote from the book, on work habits:
In the late 1970s I helped arrange a science fiction cruise sponsored by the Cunard Line. Cunard asked me to invite half a dozen science fiction writers to give lectures during one of their cruises to the West Indies. We received free passage on the cruise liner in return for a few hours of lecturing.

We were quartered in six adjacent cabins. There we were, six of us with our spouses or significant others, with nothing to do for a whole week except give an occasional lecture and enjoy the cruise.

Not quite. If you had tiptoed down the passageway outside our cabins any morning, you would have heard the tap-tap-tap of portable typewriters pecking away. Except for Isaac Asimov's cabin; Isaac was writing in longhand. (164)

I know now that Isaac Asimov treated women badly, which I hadn't for years and years; but the anecdote's punchline is worth something nevertheless.

[personal profile] daidoji_gisei, I think you'd like the craft-orientation of this book, and I suspect it would be very easy to interpolate past all the stuff that is specifically oriented toward hard sf. (I mean, when you get right down to it, fantasy requires research too, even if you're not specifically researching science that way Bova exhorts the would-be hard sf writer to.) I got this out of my public library.

- recent viewing
Hellsing Ultimate (complete) spoilers )

- Sword Art Online II "King of the Giants." spoilers )


I keep changing my Yuletide offers (my requests haven't changed). I'm watching to see if one last fandom turns up, and I might offer that depending on if a letter turns up, otherwise I'm not going to chance getting assigned something with difficult-for-me requests. I'm currently at six offers. /o\ I can't wait until assignments go out so I can start reviewing source! I know, I know, matching takes time. But still! ♥

dear yuleperson, 2014 edition

Oct. 25th, 2014 10:17 pm
healingmirth: Coca-Cola bear with Yuletide text (yuletide)
[personal profile] healingmirth
As always, my previous exchange letters are filed under my dear author tag, recs are at AO3 or pinboard and pretty much anything there in terms of preference or even story ideas for other fandoms is fair game if you're looking for inspiration. My tip-of-the-iceberg preferences meander around a bit, but if I said I loved something three years ago, it's still a safe bet.

general things )

Colditz (2005), Enlisted (TV), Tennis RPF, The State Within, Would I Lie To You? RPF, Manhattan (TV) )

AlyoraShadow's Yuletide Letter

Oct. 1st, 2014 09:52 pm
scribe: textext: one does not simply WALK into yuletide (yuletide)
[personal profile] scribe
Please Note: This is being hosted for me by Scribe, but does not in any way reflect her own preferences! This letter is about alyoraShadow’s Yuletide fic.

Dear Yuletide Author, )

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