ratherastory: (Glorious)
Goodbye, 2014, I will not miss you. Here's to kicking ass and taking names in 2015.

I hope the year is treating everyone well so far!

Things are finally starting to settle into a semblance of normalcy over here at casa [livejournal.com profile] ratherastory. I still haven't unpacked all my boxes from when I moved from Montreal to Ottawa back in November, but all the important things are unpacked. Work is calming down, the dog is calming down, and the kitten is never calm anyway. ;)

2014 was really rough on me physically, emotionally and financially. Between the end of my relationship, the death of my cats within a week of each other (one of them highly traumatic), the renovations on my old house, the sale of my house, the move to another city, having the dog and my new kitten each have a bunch of health issues, and then needing repairs on my car, I'm kind of glad the year is over. That's only my personal problems, not even counting the murders of the RCMP officers in June, the terrible events of Ferguson and everywhere else, the honour guard murdered in Ottawa in October, and the summer of constant, unrelenting online misogyny and violence against women and trans people and people of colour. Almost everyone I know suffered personal losses and crises, one after the other. In short, 2014 sucked. Good riddance to bad rubbish.

I have a number of things I would like to get accomplished in 2015, some of them writing-related, and all of them designed to make my overall quality of life infinitely better. I won't bore you with the personal goals, but since this is my fic journal, I will list the few but important goals I have for my writing this year.

Writing Goals:

  • Figure out how to write for the sheer, unadulterated joy of it again

  • Update some of my 'verses. In particular Fusion, because I love that 'verse, and the Garden 'verse, because I know where I want that 'verse to end, and I'm not there yet.

  • Write, edit and submit a novel for publication

  • Outline all my current novel projects (I have four in various stages of conception and writing)

  • Write every day in my "Morning Pages" journal, which is the best creative tool I've found for myself thus far

  • Write 300,000 words by the end of the year (I signed up for [livejournal.com profile] gywo with this goal in mind)

I've also given myself a moratorium on signing up for challenges and exchanges this year. They used to be a great source of motivation for me, but this year I found that, because I was already pretty burned out, all they did was ramp up my anxiety issues and make me hate myself and my writing. So this year will be devoted to writing things only when they bring me joy.

If you would like, you may leave me prompts for any of my existing 'verses in any fandom (not that I have that many), or request time stamps/whatever for anything I've already written**.

**I am going to be SUPER picky about which prompts I accept for Fusion, so don't take it personally if I don't end up writing your prompt specifically. I get a lot of "Sam freaks out and Dean comforts him" prompts for that 'verse which, well, is not a useful prompt, since it basically describes over half the stories in the 'verse. ;) But if you have things you'd like to see, themes you'd like to have me explore, then please toss your hat in the ring! I have a big old playground and everyone is welcome!

*waves*

Feb. 12th, 2014 12:47 am
ratherastory: ([MST3K] Evil & the Narrator)
Not dead.

I've been writing a bit. Nothing ready to post, but it's nice to get back into the habit of putting fingers to keyboard for something other than work and Twitter. I even managed to get some writing done while I was at home last week, which is a first. It wasn't much, but it was something, and I'll take it.

I even had a wee plot bunny for this season of SPN, which hasn't happened to me since Season 7. I am having trouble with the current canon, and even more of a problem with fandom's reactions to current canon. There is so. much. Sam-bashing. To the point where I, once again, have found myself scratching my head and wondering if people are watching the same show as me. Granted, the writing has been sub-par for a while, and I don't think the writers are hitting the emotional beats that they're aiming for. They've hit the target, but more like the outer rings than the bullseye. They're not even close to centre target, alas. So that probably accounts for some of it.

The point being, I have been keeping away from fandom, because my psychological make-up is such that I find this sort of thing profoundly upsetting. (I just want everyone to get along, okay?) I have been avoiding meta posts, even by authors I know are generally pretty balanced in their view, or at least take the time to explore what's going on (rather than pick a "side," whether it be pro-Dean or pro-Sam, and for the record I find Dean-bashing just as upsetting as Sam-bashing, because I'm a Sam!girl and it hurts my soul when people say mean things about Sam's brother). I am unwilling to take the risk that the comments in those posts will end up upsetting me due to their content.

This sort of thing negatively impacts my enjoyment of the show, in a significant way. I'm no longer as emotionally invested in the show as I was when I watched the first five seasons. After the main 5-year arc ended, my investment waned little by little, until now SPN is a show I love to watch, but it's not the show of my heart anymore. I haven't replaced it with another, mind you. I've just spread myself out a little, fandom-wise, and dabble a little in a few places. But I resent anything that makes me not want to watch SPN, and comments about how awful one of the boys is, or how 'shitty' an episode was, make me reluctant to watch, especially as I'm always at least a day or so behind, often more, due to work and life stuff.

Long story short, I have deliberately stopped any dialogue with fandom, in order to preserve my sanity and my enjoyment of the show, such as it is. That's where I'm at. But at least I'm writing again, and exploring other fandoms while I'm at it.

Note: This is NOT an invitation to discuss any kind of meta in the comments. I will delete any such comments with extreme prejudice and, if I must, lock down comments on the entry entirely. Don't make me do that, okay? Thanks.
ratherastory: ([Me] Fish Fear Me)
Okay, so I'm, like, five days late. Whoops.

Still, I hope 2014 is treating everyone beautifully so far! If it's not, I hope it mends its ways very quickly for you.

I have actually written words this year. Only 1,000 of them, but that's 1,000 more than I managed to write in the last 6 months, so I'm taking it as a win.

I'm trying to get back into the swing of things. I sat down and plotted out just how much free time I have for writing these days, and figured out that I have about 10-12 hours a month in which I can write. On a REALLY good day I can write about 1,000 words in an hour. Given that some of that "writing" time will have to go toward research and plotting, I think that a goal of 6,000-10,000 words a month is reasonable. Time will tell, of course, if that's feasible.

I am making a serious attempt to turn my life around, to be more present for my family, and that means a lot less time spent online when I'm at home. When I'm at work (or, rather, in the city where I work) I allow myself to be online more, because that's basically the only interaction I get with friends. But when I'm home, I want to spend as much time as possible with my family. When they're not home, I need to maximise the time I do have to do chores, run errands, and also sometimes write. That means no more screwing around on the internet when I could be doing things.

I will also be making extra special efforts to stay on top of the community stuff I'm in charge of. I've been doing okay, but not great, and I am determined to be a better mod this year. Here's hoping.

What's everyone else up to these days? Inquiring minds want to know!
ratherastory: ([SPN] Writing Is Hard!)
You may have noticed (ahem) that I haven't been writing. This is due to many things, all of which can be summed up as Real Life Has Eaten [livejournal.com profile] ratherastory's Brain.

In bullet points:

- New job
- New schedule (a very fucking early schedule)
- Commute to a different city (2-3 hours one way)
- Toddler
- Family stuff
- Crappy/not enough sleep
- Various minor health issues
- Massive anxiety issues

The result is that, essentially, my brain is fried. I can't concentrate long enough to even read one chapter in a book these days, let alone write anything. If I'm lucky I can focus for the 40 minutes it takes to get me through an episode of TV, but even that is hit-and-miss. Sometimes I'll be watching something and realize close to the end of the episode that I stopped paying attention 15 minutes in and have no idea what's happening.

That being said, I miss writing. I even picked up a prompt for the fic challenge at [livejournal.com profile] ohsam to see if I could get the juices flowing again. I doubt it'll happen this month, what with the holidays and all, but I'm setting myself a goal for January, to start writing again.

In light of that, I'm going to write down a list of all the projects and ideas I have simmering in the back of my mind. Not that all of these will get written, but it'll be good for me to have all the possibilities laid out before me. The emphasis for me right now is to work on finishing stuff. If I want to be a "serious" writer, I need to not let myself get distracted by shiny new projects and instead work out structural problems in the stories and fix them, then finish my projects. For my original stuff, the focus will be on structure and outlining, which I am not good at, since I think that will really help me get it all written and finished.


Projects & stuff behind the cut! )
ratherastory: ([Rome] Ahem)
I'm still alive!

New job, new city, plus all the family stuff that's been happening have kept me hopping.

However, someone reminded me that Christmas is not as far away as I thought, and that means that I should be doing announcements and such for the Clint/Coulson Holiday Exchange soon.

Naturally, I panicked a little. ;)

The lovely and talented [redacted] had to bow out last year for personal reasons, and I sure as heck can't sail this ship alone. This year I'd like to open up the exchange to non-written fanworks as well. Also, last year people requested that there be an AO3-compatible component to the challenge, which I have NO IDEA how to do.

So here is the post in which I beg for a co-mod. Take a look, spread the word, or even come and volunteer! I could seriously use the help.

Cheers!
ratherastory: (Canadian Borg)

Recopied from Tumblr, for my own records, because Tumblr mostly confuses me.


I had this linked to me the other day.



Cut for length )

\o/

Jul. 1st, 2013 08:17 am
ratherastory: (Canadian Borg)
Happy Canada Day, everyone!


canadian-flag-heart
ratherastory: ([B5] Nibbled to death by cats)
There has been no fic. There are two reasons for this.

1- I am doing relief work in another province for my job. There is work coming out of my ears, and I've barely had a minute to myself that hasn't involved working or sleeping or getting myself to and from work and bed.

2- I have been writing, but I'm actually writing an original novel. I'm hoping to get the draft done by the end of February, and then get it looked over and sent out ASAP. It's a simple little m/m romance, and I decided to go with my strengths, which is straight-up h/c (respiratory distress, FTW!) with a bit of mystery on the side. It's 22k so far, and I'm pretty excited about it.

It's nice to be writing again, though, after months of drought, and especially exciting to be writing original fiction again after years and years of either not writing or writing only fanfic. I love fanfic, don't get me wrong, but I missed my own characters.

I'll be home in February, and there will be even more work when I get back. Hopefully I'll still be able to write, so that I can keep this momentum going. It's good to be back. :)
ratherastory: ([Firefly] Huggles)
:::This is a cross-post from my regular LJ. Apologies to those who have to see it twice.:::

I wish you all the joy of the season. To those of you who are celebrating, much contentment and affection in the presence of your loved ones. For those of you who don't celebrate this day, all the happiness that you could wish for on any day of the year. For those of you who can't celebrate for reasons outside of your control, I hope that all the abundance of love and joy and hope in the world spills over and fills all the spaces in your lives—because luckily there isn't a finite amount of the stuff, and the more people engage in it the more there is to go around.

I love all of you. Thinking of all of you today, and always, even if I'm not always around to type it out on my screen. :)
ratherastory: ([Rome] Ahem)
Dear America, way to go! I was up with you until all hours, celebrating your choice. Here's to four more years of progress. ♥


And onto fandom things!



Come play happy winter games, all while hurting Sam!
ratherastory: ([B5] Nibbled to death by cats)
Does anyone local know someone in need of a cat? (By local I mean Montreal, Canada, and thereabouts)

Poor Smudge is not adjusting well to the dog.

Worse, the dog is not adjusting to Smudge either. The dog got into the spare room tonight where Smudge has been camping out, lunged up onto the furniture after him and tried to bite him. Or eat him, I honestly can't tell. He literally had his jaws around poor Smudge by the time I managed to intervene, and I nearly broke my finger getting them apart.

Since Sergent is here to stay and is fine with the other two cats, I think I need to re-home Smudge in a nice, calm place where there are no other cats or pets of any kind. He's a sweet, affectionate cat with people—it's just other animals he doesn't get along with. He hasn't had any behavioural issues in years: he always uses the litter box (even the whole time the dog was stressing him out, no less!), and cuddles with me and purrs whenever I go into the room.

As much as it breaks my heart, I think he would do better in a single cat household. Right now I feel like he's being punished for something that's not his fault or his doing.

Anyone in the area looking for a cat? Or do you know someone looking for a cat? If you do, point them my way, please. Smudge deserves a better life than the one he has now. If there's interest, I am happy to answer any and all questions about my kitty)
ratherastory: (Default)
This is a non-fandom post. I stole it from a friend of mine in a different place, because I think this is where the power of fandom can be harnessed for good. I've been feeling a little out of place and useless in the world lately, and this seems like a good way to get rid of that feeling.

Feel free to link this around, too, if you'd like. The more people see this, the more likely everyone will have a chance at getting what they need.

ETA: You don't have to be my LJ friend to participate. In fact, I highly encourage you to participate no matter what! Go ahead and ask for something. You never know what people might be able to provide.





What do you need? (Copied from a DW friend, so not in American, but you can Google translate. I like how it reads.)

(We can solve our own problems and help each other. Here's a spot to do so. Leaving it open...Non friends comments screened by default but I'll release them as soon as I see them.)

What do you need? Not what do you want? A million pounds, a fairy godmother, a nicer car.

But what do you need? A friend in Spain. Or Norfolk. A car that works, to get your kids to school. An old and unloved mp3 player that has been chewed by a cat but still works. A loan of fifty quid, for a week. Someone to trade emails with. People to visit your online shop. A hand-made card to make you feel loved. More friends on your journal. A copy of the Oxford English Dictionary, not too old. Advice on doing your own taxes. A loving but firm kick up the bum to get on with that project. Someone to talk lampwork / knitting / martial arts with. Clients to photograph in return for train fare or lunch. Help with your vet or medical bills, a dollar at a time. A used wheelchair. An unwanted bookcase. Reviews on Amazon. A cat-sitter. Reassurance because you're getting married / having a baby / getting your first job / struggling in college and need a pep-talk.

Sound off. Send people here.

ALSO? GO AHEAD AND FRIEND SOME FOLKS. Might as well frenzy a little bit too. Pleased to meet you.
ratherastory: (Default)
This is a non-fandom post. I stole it from a friend of mine in a different place, because I think this is where the power of fandom can be harnessed for good. I've been feeling a little out of place and useless in the world lately, and this seems like a good way to get rid of that feeling.

Feel free to link this around, too, if you'd like. The more people see this, the more likely everyone will have a chance at getting what they need.


ETA: You don't have to be my LJ friend to participate. In fact, I highly encourage you to participate no matter what! Go ahead and ask for something. You never know what people might be able to provide.





What do you need? (Copied from a DW friend, so not in American, but you can Google translate. I like how it reads.)

(We can solve our own problems and help each other. Here's a spot to do so. Leaving it open...Non friends comments screened by default but I'll release them as soon as I see them.)

What do you need? Not what do you want? A million pounds, a fairy godmother, a nicer car.

But what do you need? A friend in Spain. Or Norfolk. A car that works, to get your kids to school. An old and unloved mp3 player that has been chewed by a cat but still works. A loan of fifty quid, for a week. Someone to trade emails with. People to visit your online shop. A hand-made card to make you feel loved. More friends on your journal. A copy of the Oxford English Dictionary, not too old. Advice on doing your own taxes. A loving but firm kick up the bum to get on with that project. Someone to talk lampwork / knitting / martial arts with. Clients to photograph in return for train fare or lunch. Help with your vet or medical bills, a dollar at a time. A used wheelchair. An unwanted bookcase. Reviews on Amazon. A cat-sitter. Reassurance because you're getting married / having a baby / getting your first job / struggling in college and need a pep-talk.

Sound off. Send people here.

ALSO? GO AHEAD AND FRIEND SOME FOLKS. Might as well frenzy a little bit too. Pleased to meet you.
ratherastory: (Default)
[Error: unknown template qotd]

Oh, heck, why not?

I want Chris Redfield. That way I stand a better-than-average chance of surviving the zombie apocalypse. Also, he's a good guy who's loyal to his family. Sounds good to me. :)
ratherastory: (Ahem)
Originally posted by [livejournal.com profile] pinkfinity at Updated STOP SOPA/STOP PIPA post

You may have seen this image on the internet today:


And you've probably read about SOPA and PIPA on Twitter and Facebook and tumblr and websites like reddit and boingboing and google and Wikipedia.

But there's a few issues that are of particular concern to those with a fannish bent. theoatmeal.com touches on some of them from a parody perspective, but basically, the "Stop Internet Piracy Act" (and PIPA as well) are written in such a way that they give any owner of any copyright, trademark right, right of publicity or other intellectual property rights the ability to shut down a site's ability to accept donations made via credit card companies, PayPal or Amazon, or bar a site from hosting Google or Groupon ads or being part of the WBShop or Amazon Affiliate programs just because they think that one icon, one User Profile, one piece of fanart, one fanvid or one fanfic infringes on their content - regardless of whether that story, icon, vid or art is transformative, or created pursuant to fair use.

"Fair use is a lawful use of copyright." That's what the Northern District of California said in Lenz v. Universal Music back in 2008. So much of what we do on fansites - from the discussions and reviews to art and fic and vids we host and link to - is fair use, but there's no Fair Use provision in SOPA.

"Think about this for a second: think how many bogus DMCA takedown notices are sent by copyright holders to take down content they don't like," writes TechDirt's Mike Masnick. "With this new bill, should it become law, those same copyright holders will be able to cut off advertising and payment processing to such sites. Without court review."

Donations are vital to fansites; if they can't accept financial support from users and visitors, many will not be able to keep the site online; it costs between $20 and $1000 per month for servers at fansites of various sizes. Ads are vital to other sites - Googleads, the BlogHer network, store associateships, etc.

If SOPA passes, and one copyright-holder who doesn't agree with the law of Fair Use complains to PayPal or Google or Amazon, it is likely that at least some sites will lose the ability to accept donations from users like you, and many will be unable to use ad revenue to keep the sites online.

And fandom-run sites are just a small portion of the internet, in the grand scheme of things. YouTube hosts fanvids, parodies and reviews, Tumblr and LiveJournal host every type of content that can be created, and Google links to everything. One person can choose to abuse the provisions of SOPA and damage each of those sites for everyone - or the sites themselves may curtail certain services, or limit what they allow people to share, discuss and distribute.

That's not an Internet that any of us would recognize.

The worst part of SOPA and PIPA is that the worst case scenarios are extremely likely, plausible and conceivable.

The good news is, the White House has threatened a veto of the bills as they were last week, and the House has put off votes for the immediate future, because we on the internet - we content creators and we content distributors and we content users - have said no, this proposed law is bad and will destroy something we need, use and love.

We can’t sit down now.

If you live in the US, please sign Google's petition, or click here to visit the EFF's website and have an email automatically sent to your representative.

*Not the right word when only one of the six entities testifying before Congress is an Internet-purposed company!

ETA: More discussion here; this post is also on Tumblr.

ratherastory: (Ahem)
Hola all!

So, as I said in a previous post, I am taking a mini-break from the internet, starting at midnight and finishing December 18th (inclusively).

I'm not going to be completely gone. I have a few fic commitments due in December, so I'll be posting a few times. I'll also be checking my email once a day in case of "emergencies." However, for the rest I will not be checking LJ, Twitter, or any other part of the internet for two weeks.

(I'm kind of amused that my hiatus is starting at the same time as the SPN hiatus, but I think that may just be amusing to me)

With any luck, this little two-week detox will be just the thing for me to get my RL shit together, to get a lot more writing done, and to come back refreshed and excited to do fandom stuff again.

If you need help with anything relating to the comms I help to run, my co-mods will be happy to answer your queries.

Everyone take good care of yourselves in my absence, and I will see you on the flip side!
ratherastory: (Ahem)
Hola all!

So, as I said in a previous post, I am taking a mini-break from the internet, starting at midnight and finishing December 18th (inclusively).

I'm not going to be completely gone. I have a few fic commitments due in December, so I'll be posting a few times. I'll also be checking my email once a day in case of "emergencies." However, for the rest I will not be checking LJ, Twitter, or any other part of the internet for two weeks.

(I'm kind of amused that my hiatus is starting at the same time as the SPN hiatus, but I think that may just be amusing to me)

With any luck, this little two-week detox will be just the thing for me to get my RL shit together, to get a lot more writing done, and to come back refreshed and excited to do fandom stuff again.

If you need help with anything relating to the comms I help to run, my co-mods will be happy to answer your queries.

Everyone take good care of yourselves in my absence, and I will see you on the flip side!
ratherastory: (SPN OMG hold me)
[livejournal.com profile] delicatale is doing a love meme.

My bosses decided that my sarcasm and body language are inappropriate at work, even though they in no way, shape or form affect the quality of the work I do. I am not even allowed to roll my eyes or ~sigh~ when I've hung up after a difficult call. Apparently this is bad for office morale.

In short:




So here's my thread. Tell me something nice?
ratherastory: (SPN OMG hold me)
[livejournal.com profile] delicatale is doing a love meme.

My bosses decided that my sarcasm and body language are inappropriate at work, even though they in no way, shape or form affect the quality of the work I do. I am not even allowed to roll my eyes or ~sigh~ when I've hung up after a difficult call. Apparently this is bad for office morale.

In short:




So here's my thread. Tell me something nice?
ratherastory: (Korman The Fish)
So I've decided that for my own sanity I'm going to unplug for the first two weeks of December. I'm going to go 90% offline from December 3rd to December 18th inclusively. No Twitter, no LJ, with a couple of minor exceptions.

I've been spending way too much time online and not enough time in the "real" world, and my outside life has been suffering for it. So I'm going to detox for a couple of weeks, and hopefully return with a newfound sense of balance between work, life and fandom.

There will be a couple of exceptions to this rule, because I have commitments that I fully intend to honour:

1- I will check my emails once a day in case of "emergencies."
2- I will be keeping up my monitoring of [livejournal.com profile] ohsam with regards to the fic challenge
3- I will be posting challenge/exchange fics on my appointed posting dates

Otherwise, that will pretty much be it. I'll be focusing instead on my writing (without distractions), on getting my house in order and on de-neglecting all the lovely folk who live near me in the flesh.

In short, if you feel like you're not hearing from me much in early December, that will be why. :)

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