Greetings from the NYBG

Jul. 24th, 2017 12:08 am
littlereview: (jewitch)
[personal profile] littlereview
On Sunday we met my sister, her husband, and two of their daughters -- the third had to work -- at the New York Botanical Garden to see the Chihuly exhibit. It's wonderful, and I say this as someone who has seen many indoor and outdoor Chihuly installations. This one doesn't quite have the scope of the Seattle museum devoted entirely to him, but it makes fantastic use of the gardens, so for instance this is the first time we've seen one of his float boats actually floating in water rather than on a platform in an exhibit space.

We all got there later than expected, so we were ready for lunch at different times, but we sat at one of the outdoor tables and talked for a while before going our separate ways. The drive home had one hellacious stretch just past the Delaware Memorial Bridge when it poured so hard the Delaware Shakespeare Festival eventually ended up canceling its evening performance, but we made it home to son and cats who had all been fed though the latter denied it vociferously! A few Chihuly family photos, more when I'm unpacked:

17nybg1
Chihuly in the Garden )

Drabble: Dessert

Jul. 23rd, 2017 04:20 pm
alisanne: (HD bring it)
[personal profile] alisanne
Title: Dessert
Author: [personal profile] alisanne
Rating: PG
Word count: 100 x 2
Characters/pairings: Harry Potter/Draco Malfoy.
Challenge: Written for [community profile] dracoharry100/[livejournal.com profile] dracoharry100's prompt 489: Eat.
This is part 71 of my H/D Auror Series (LJ/IJ/DW).
It starts at part one: The Beginning (LJ/IJ/DW).
Disclaimer: The characters contained herein are not mine. No money is being made from this fiction, which is presented for entertainment purposes only.
Beta(s): [personal profile] sevfan and [personal profile] emynn.
Authors Notes: Harry's mind stays on one track.

Dessert )
musesfool: Nick/Cassie, Push (ours is a forbidden love)
[personal profile] musesfool
For [personal profile] grammarwoman for the DVD commentary meme.

Driving with the brakes on
Push (2009); Nick/Cassie (Nick/OFC); adult; 13,650 words
Nick discovers a way to help Cassie see more clearly. It's a little sketchier than he's comfortable with.

I don't actually remember the genesis of this idea, but there's a post in my LJ that says, So I said to [personal profile] angelgazing, "Tell me not to write the story where orgasms make Cassie's visions clearer" and she said, "you should TOTALLY write that story" and two weeks and 13k words later, I wrote the story. Which is basically how these things go when [tumblr.com profile] angelgazing wants me to write a thing, especially if I already kind of want to write it anyway.

content notes: Cassie's 16; one reference to offscreen sexual assault of non-canon characters

All through the writing of this story, Cassie was 15. Cassie was 15 right up until I actually posted. Then I had a conversation with [personal profile] snacky and decided to make her 16 instead. I don't think it makes it better? But maybe some people are slightly less squicked? Idk.

But unless the moon falls tonight, unless continents collide, / Nothing's gonna make me break from her side )

~*~

I hope that provided some insight on what was a 13K word exercise in id-fic. *hands*

~*~

Weekly Random Post of Random

Jul. 23rd, 2017 09:31 am
alisanne: (Default)
[personal profile] alisanne

Here's what happens when anyone criticizes my HP obsession )
Happy Sunday, all! And remember, spread love, not hate. <3

Drabble: Escape Plan

Jul. 22nd, 2017 06:05 pm
alisanne: (Snape)
[personal profile] alisanne
Title: Escape Plan
Author: [personal profile] alisanne
Pairing/Characters: Severus Snape, Kingsley Shacklebolt, Lucius and Narcissa Malfoy, Albus Dumbledore.
Word Count: 100 x 7
Rating: PG
Challenge: Written for [livejournal.com profile] snape100/[insanejournal.com profile] snape100/[community profile] snape100's prompt # 700: The Snapely Alphabet of Places - Upper Flagely.
This is part Twelve of my Snape: Horcrux Hunter series (LJ/IJ/DW).
Warning(s): AU.
Beta(s): [personal profile] sevfan and [personal profile] emynn.
Disclaimer: The characters contained herein are not mine. No money is being made from this fiction, which is presented for entertainment purposes only.

Escape Plan )

my love i am the speed of sound

Jul. 22nd, 2017 12:42 pm
musesfool: Peggy Carter is gunning for you (your heart is a weapon)
[personal profile] musesfool
L and I made a spur of the moment decision to see Dunkirk last night - well, as spur-of-the-moment as you can with purchasing reserved seats ahead of time *snerk* - and I have mixed feelings about it. It is beautifully shot and I could watch Tom Hardy spoiler ) all day, but mostly I feel like it took an amazing real life story and didn't deliver on the emotional impact of it. spoilers )

I liked that it was nearly dialogue free (and I didn't mind that I couldn't understand half the dialogue that there was), but I felt that the structure was overly fiddly and unnecessary and it kept me from full immersion (um, pun not intended?) emotionally. Also the music was too loud and there was too much of it.

It also suffers a little from Band of Brothers syndrome in that I couldn't tell the two young dudes apart for most of the story. Once they're both wet so you can't tell which one has curly hair and which one has straight hair, I couldn't tell them apart, and I honestly didn't care that much about them beyond the generic - I mean, I didn't want any of those guys to die, and I felt there was nothing specific about those two to make me care more. spoilers ) (Otoh, casting Harry Styles - who was good, I thought - was a smart move, because I always recognized him, even half-drowned.)

Mark Rylance and Kenneth Branagh (and James D'Arcy!) were great, as was Tom Hardy. I mean, I would have watched a whole movie where Tom Hardy spoiler ) But overall, it's a B to B+ kind of movie for me. I wouldn't see it again.

If you do see it, I can say it was definitely worth seeing in 70mm, if you have that option. Otoh, if you have a fear of drowning, I don't recommend it for you.

Both L and I had similar mixed feelings. We discussed it on the walk to the bus stop, and my god, I have never sweated as much as I sweated yesterday - it was not a day for walking but I did a lot of it. I was so overheated that I never once felt cold in the movie theater despite being sleeveless, which has never ever happened to me before.

Before the movie we were going to meet at a Mexican place that looked good, but it was so jam packed with people, we ended up at the Cafe Tallulah, where the cheeseburger is fantastic, but again, on a day as hot as yesterday, wtf were the front windows all doing open, so you couldn't feel the air conditioning hardly at all? I never sweated so much in my life while doing nothing.

***

Greetings from Elmsford

Jul. 22nd, 2017 12:01 am
littlereview: (little review)
[personal profile] littlereview
After an uneventful morning which I spent with Adam, who decided to work from home, Paul came home early so he and I could pack up and drive to New York. (Adam opted to remain in Maryland so he could continue to celebrate his birthday among friends.) We had moderate traffic, with a brief stop in Delaware for gas and a slightly longer one in New Jersey for dinner, but we enjoyed good weather and we saw many deer and several groundhogs along the side of the road. Here are a few photos from before the Fort McHenry Tunnel, the Delaware Memorial Bridge, the Tappan Zee Bridge, and the sky over Elmsford:

17nytr1
Driving North )

Fic: Photo Op

Jul. 21st, 2017 02:59 pm
alisanne: (Snarry_wand)
[personal profile] alisanne
Title: Photo Op
Author: [personal profile] alisanne
Rating: PG
Pairing: Severus Snape/Harry Potter
Summary: Some opportunities are too good to miss, and some aren't.
Word Count: 365
Warnings: Mild angst.
A/N: Written for [livejournal.com profile] hogwarts365/[community profile] hogwarts365's prompt # 201: “Sometimes I wonder if my heart is like a black hole--it's so dense that there's no room for light, but that doesn't mean it can't still suck me in.” ― Jasmine Warga, My Heart and Other Black Holes, Height, Nimbus Racing Broom Company.
Beta(s): [personal profile] sevfan and [personal profile] emynn.
Disclaimer: The characters contained herein are not mine. No money is being made from this fiction, which is presented for entertainment purposes only.

Photo Op )
copperbadge: (Default)
[personal profile] copperbadge
I still have to review Extra Virginity as well, but I actually liked that one, so it will take longer to compose….

One of the things I did get done yesterday between work, the ball game, and the Epic Sunburn, was finish a slim book of short stories called A City Equal to My Desire by James Sallis. This wasn’t a book that was recommended to me, which means I don’t have to feel bad about truly disliking it. I found it in a keyword search on the library website for books about ukuleles, and it has a short story called Ukulele And The World’s Pain, which admittedly was one of the better stories in the book despite still not being very good.

From what I can tell, he did pick the best story out of the book to develop into a novel, “Drive”, but it is very obviously unfinished in short-story form. Sallis has a couple of ongoing problems in the short story collection, one of which is that he tends to skip the vital information you need in order to know what the fuck is going on. And not in a “the blanks slowly get filled in” way, or in a “your imagination is more terrible” way (though there is a little of that) but just in a way where like…he says something that you understand to be vital to the story but which is missing context, then spends like a page describing the fucking diner someone’s sitting in, and by then any context forthcoming doesn’t get linked back. It’s like being in the middle of a paragraph when you hit the photo plates in an older book – yes the photos are very interesting thank you but I need to finish the thought you were sharing with me before I go back and look at them. I think maybe he thinks this is challenging the reader but it’s not, it’s just annoying and makes what are otherwise interesting premises totally opaque. I shouldn’t need to work this hard for a story about a hit man who decides not to kill a politician. 

If the book had a more cohesive theme in terms of the stories, it might be more readable – he clearly enjoys building worlds and then doesn’t quite know what to do with them once he’s built them, so if this was an entire book of “weird and different worlds” ala Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities, I would buy in more fully and I think he would have put a little more elbow in. But it’s not. It’s mostly “here’s a really interesting world and a person living in squalor in it does something while being in it”. Also he appears to be fascinated by describing things that are shaped like pi. And a lot of times it feels like he read a wikipedia article on something and wanted to share some knowledge, so he just kind of built a half-assed story around his wikiwander. 

And all of this I would probably let go if say, it was something I was noticing in a fanfic writer, or someone who was just starting out, or someone I felt was genuinely trying to get a point across. But there’s this inexplicable sense of arrogance to the collection, a sort of smugness to it that in professional writers drives me up the goddamn wall. Stephen King sometimes falls into the same trap, where it feels like the author believes they don’t have to respect their readers because they are The Writer. 

The thing about volumes of short stories is that you keep reading it because sometimes there is a real gem. And there are one or two good stories in the volume, but I don’t know if they’re worth the rest of it. 

So my review I guess is mostly me being annoyed, but it boils down to “If you like short stories in the SFF Noir genre, give it a whirl, but if you’re bored with a story none of them get better, so feel free to skip to the next one.” 

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when the sun burst through the sky

Jul. 21st, 2017 10:05 am
musesfool: Stephanie Brown as Batgirl (can't hardly wait)
[personal profile] musesfool
I spent last night reading fic where Jason and Cass turn out to be biological siblings, not just adopted siblings, and squee!, that is one of my favorite Batfamily tropes. Plus, there was some awesome Jason-Cass-Steph bonding which I feel canon has repeatedly cheated me out of, even though they would get along like a house on fire (literally, probably, given Jason's involvement and enjoyment in blowing things up). Plus there is some hilarious snark at poor Tim's expense that made me laugh out loud repeatedly. Oh Tim. (There will be recs at the end of the month as usual, but here and here for those of you who are impatient and also not following my pinboard.)

Also, yesterday, my consolation birthday present arrived - a beautiful red patent leather Love Moschino tote bag (wow, there were three left in stock when I ordered mine and now there are none! I'm glad I got there in time!). During the whole epic search for a new bag, I coveted a red patent leather bag, but couldn't find one (or, rather, couldn't find one that was less than, like, $800 and while I'm profligate, I'm not that profligate), since I guess they aren't in style right now? Except it's red patent leather so I can't imagine how it could go out of style? But whatever. On a whim on Wednesday, I checked Zappo's to see if there were any available, and lo and behold, there it was. It's beautiful. It's big and kind of unwieldy (and unpleasantly sticky against the bare skin of my arm in the heat), but I don't care, because it's gorgeous.

Bosses 1 & 3 both admired it as I unpacked it from the box, and they were like, "Are you going to save it for special occasions?" and I said, "Hell no!" (note: I did not actually say "Hell no!" I just said, "no! I bought it so I could use it! Because it is beautiful!") And I recommend to all of you to use your beautiful and special things rather than waiting for some mythical special occasion to crop up, because frequently, you will be waiting forever and never get to enjoy the beautiful thing you bought for yourself. Using a special bag/wearing your beautiful new shoes/opening that expensive bottle of wine - they can all make a regular occasion special, and I recommend you do that rather than wait for some occasion arbitrarily deemed "special" enough to break out the fancy lipstick or whatever. Live your best life whenever you can, people!

***

Poem for Friday and 21st Birthday

Jul. 21st, 2017 12:49 am
littlereview: (jewitch)
[personal profile] littlereview
Dinner of Herbs )

Thursday was Adam's 21st birthday! He had to work, though he didn't need the car so I got to get done various chores that required going out, but when he and Paul got home, we picked up my parents and went to The Melting Pot for dinner. We all ate way too much -- we had the four-course meal, which in my case included fiesta cheese, the California salad, tofu and veggies, and three kinds of chocolate in two fondue pots -- but it was all awesome and I hope Adam enjoyed it a much I as I did. We stopped at home briefly to give him presents, then he went to College Park to celebrate properly with his friends! A few photos:

17abday4
Birthday Celebrating )

Harry Potter Lootcrate!

Jul. 20th, 2017 07:26 pm
alisanne: (Default)
[personal profile] alisanne
You guys!
So I signed up to receive Harry Potter Lootcrates, and the first one arrived today!

Clicky to see mah loot! Thank you, Aquascum for technical assistance! )
Anyway, all in all, I liked the loot. I'll let you know how it goes. :)
musesfool: wendy watson in a wetsuit with a gun (come at me bro)
[personal profile] musesfool
Dear co-workers:

* I cannot finish your urgent project in a timely fashion if you keep interrupting me to ask when your project is going to be finished! Please stop!

* We have already done Thing based on all your requirements (and with your approval!) last quarter. We can just update it instead of spending so much time trying to come up with a new way to do it (only to come up with basically the exact same Thing). There is no need to spend hours reinventing the wheel!

* You have to decide whether you need a meeting to happen ASAP or if you need everyone involved present, because it's July coming up on August, and half the people you need will be out on vacation at any given moment and I have no control of that.

* I don't want healthy snacks in the vending machine. If I am driven to getting food from it, it's generally because I want Frito Lay corn chips or terrible plasticky cheap chocolate, not some sort of chip made from beans or some kind of granola bar! WTF?

no love,

me

***

DD ruminations

Jul. 20th, 2017 10:19 am
alisanne: (Default)
[personal profile] alisanne
As many of you know, I've been participating in [insanejournal.com profile] daily_deviant since 2007. And, with the exception of the year of cancer, I haven't missed many months.
So I thought I'd compile some wacky statistics and see how that all has shaken out so far.

For me, the big draw of DD is to be able to write pairings and kinks I normally wouldn't. Things like The Fat Lady/Molly Weasley, or Wormtail wanking while in rat form (LMAO). And yes, I even managed copraphagy (scat) once.

Anyway, I figured I'd do some calculations and see just how much I rely on my OTP for DD.
And since I consider Harry/Draco my secondary OTP, I figured I'd throw them into the calculation, too. ;)

Out of 113 total posts, I have written 23 Snarry fics, 9 Harry/Draco, and 4 Drapery. Which means about 20% of the time I write my OTP, H/D is 7%, and Drapery is 3%. That puts me at around 30% overall.
And, considering I often write my OTP for DD when desperate (I call it committing emergency Snarry *g*), that's not too bad, IMO.
FYI, I left out fics with background Snarry (where they are just mentioned as couple, but not the focus of the story).

Writing 70% 'other stuff' counts as being adventurous as far as I'm concerned. *g*

Right, how about you guys?
Especially those of you in DD, let's see your stats. I'm curious!

Poem for Thursday and Little Birds

Jul. 20th, 2017 12:40 am
littlereview: (green little review)
[personal profile] littlereview
Pied Beauty )

My whole Wednesday was boring chores. Adam had one vehicle and Paul had the other, so since I had no transportation, I figured it was a good day to get work done (some of it anyway) and get things done in the house (not that you can ever tell that I got things done unless you're me). The cats found me boring and lounged around on my bed or the couch all day.

The Orioles won again really well, which was nice, though the Nats game is ongoing and not good since the bottom of the first. We caught up on Still Star-Crossed, which hasn't officially been canceled but has not picked up the cast, which means it will be soon so I might as well enjoy it while I can. Here are some of the sparrows who live on our roof:

17bbird3
Grotto of Lourdes )
copperbadge: (Default)
[personal profile] copperbadge
I am like….90% sure I’m going camping this Friday. 

It depends a bit on the weather, but I’m mostly packed, I’ve cooked food that’s currently waiting in the freezer, and I have acquired the third Diane Mott Davidson book to read. 

The plan is to leave work early, catch the train to the campground, camp overnight, and in the morning hike out to a different train station further down the line, about a seven-mile trek, to do a longer endurance test than last weekend’s. Then I’ll catch the train home around noon on Saturday.

If something goes wrong, I can catch an evening train home on Friday until eight o’clock, or starting in the morning at 5:30, with little to no exertion. It’s pretty low-risk and I’m well stocked. I don’t have a sleeping pad, but my backpack has a partial one built-in, and I have one arriving tomorrow (though it might be too bulky, we’ll see). And honestly in this heat, I might just sleep on top of my sleeping bag in any case. 

Worst case scenario, the campground has heated, lockable shower cubicles with nice big floors. I’ve slept on worse. 

Caaaaaaamping! *jazz hands*

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Drabble: Of Passion and Pardon

Jul. 19th, 2017 02:04 pm
alisanne: (Snarry Tender)
[personal profile] alisanne
Title: Of Passion and Pardon
Author: [personal profile] alisanne
Pairing/Characters: Severus Snape/Harry Potter, Ginny Weasley/OFC.
Word Count: 100 x 6
Rating: PG
Challenge: Written for [community profile] snarry100/[insanejournal.com profile] snarry100/[livejournal.com profile] snarry100's prompt# 585: Passion.
Summary: The fateful meeting day arrives.
Part Twenty of the Wisdom Series (LJ/IJ/DW).
Beta(s): [personal profile] sevfan and [personal profile] emynn.
Disclaimer: The characters contained herein are not mine. No money is being made from this fiction, which is presented for entertainment purposes only.

Of Passion and Pardon )

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thescarletwoman: (Default)
Mutterings of a Music History Major

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