kaitou: (hmph)
This post was originally going to be about how awesome River Song was in comparison To Amy Pond. That shows you how long ago I started to plan this, because that was before the show did its best to ruin her.

Spoilers Sweetie! )
kaitou: (hmph)
I "liked" Doctor Who on Facebook, which means that I get constant updates and video clips of old doctors and things. Mostly I ignore them, but the other night they had one saying "Do you love Amy Pond? In the next half-season there's an episode devoted to to her backstory that will break your heart!"

In a fit of "Someone is Wrong on the Internet" I clicked on the comments to say "NO. I don't love Amy, get her the hell off the TARDIS." And as I read through the comments I saw that there were two camps. The people who hated Amy...mostly women. And the people that love Amy, mostly men. The men were baffled at the Amy Hate, and decided that we must be either die hard Doctor/Rose shippers or just jealous because Amy's pretty.

Um. NO.
HELL no.

And here's why. Warning, as River would say...Spoilers! )
kaitou: (hmph)
I'm still on my romance novel kick. And still picky as all hell. When I was up in Detroit I went to a used bookstore in my parents neighborhood that I know specializes in romance novels and picked up a bunch of things.

Among them was Julie Anne Long's "Since the Surrender," the third book in a series. The first book in the series was awesome. The second book was just ok, with two brilliantly funny scenes. This third one was...

Ok, so 85% of the book was actually great. As good as the first book. Good enough that when I hit the first of my major problems with it I decided to give it a pass. But in the last 100 pages the whole thing crashed and burned and went radioactive. I'm going to pick this apart, and I'm not going to try and be spoiler free, because I AM SPARING YOU FROM TRAVESTY. I will, however, put this under a cut, because this shit is about to get long.

Here is your cut. )
kaitou: (Default)
I'm still on my romance reading kick, and ran across one that was a little different, and it made me think a bit. "Forbidden Magic" by Jo Beverly was interesting because it had a Manic Pixie Dream Guy. Usually it's the heroine in a Regency Romance who's like a Disney Princess on speed. She'll be the one who is overly familiar with servants, who of course adore her. She'll put up with the deaf butler and the elderly housekeeper because they're like family. She'll have the three legged dog and keep frogs in her reticule. (Srsly, I have read like 3 books now where the heroine keeps a frog in her purse, wtf?) And the hero will be very staid and proper, but he'll learn to love her joie de vie, yadda yadda yadda.

But in this book it's the hero that has the chaotic household. The maid has one eye, the dog has a perma-snarl, the footman has a limp... there's even an inappropriate parrot. He loves the heroine's little brothers and sisters and lets them eat ices for appetizers and plays with them. And of course the heroine who's had to have everything under tight control to keep her family out of serious trouble, learns to loosen up and enjoy life.

I was amused by the Manic Pixie Dream Guy, but what kind of surprised me is that making the Girl the uptight one made her almost unlikable. I'm so used to the heroine being immediately sweet and accepting that it's a little off putting when she balks at the ex-pickpocket working as a servant for her little siblings. Which is a bad reaction on my part. I would probably balk too. But it's interesting that it's an expectation that I didn't even realize I had.
kaitou: (hmph)
So I have totally been in the mood for fluffy, funny historical romance novels lately. Just...something happy you know? But most of what I've been reading is crap.

There is no excuse for this! Genre fiction, and I think romance novels in particular get a bad rap for being trash. But I've read a lot of good ones that I've really enjoyed. So when I was in the mood, and I couldn't find anything, I asked people for reccomendations. And I've been reading my way through them, and half of them make me want to committ an act of violence, because they're nice and readable until they introduce the idiot ball.

So, yeah, let's talk about the Idiot Ball. )
kaitou: (CSI Middle Earth)
So I've been working on this a bit, though it's not as coherent as it ought to be yet. But when I was at Anime Boston, and going to all the writing panels, I was really struck by how much people wanted to talk about OCs and Mary Sues. When [livejournal.com profile] twigcollins and I briefly touched on it, that's when all the hands went up. And then the next day at another panel, a huge chunk of time was eaten up by discussing OCs. So obviously this is something People Want To Know About.

And so when I was in Japan and stuck in a waiting room before I was allowed to go visit a plant, and after I'd made a list of all the knitting projects I have planned, I started to write up My Thoughts on Yaoi Original Characters.

How to Handle Original Characters in Fanfic )

So there it is. I'd like to hear your opinions on all of this. I usually figure out my own opinions to things socratically, so it would be really helpful to me too. And I'd like to hear about any good examples of OCs you know of as well. Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] twigcollins for inspiring this, and to [livejournal.com profile] flidgetjerome for going over it and reminding me of things like villains.
kaitou: (not very bright)
I finished reading a book on Sunday, The Time-Traveler's Guide to to Medieval England. It was pretty good, and probably a good jumping-off sourcebook if I ever feel like writing something set in the 14th Century. But the last chapter was so in love with Chaucer that it made me pull out my old copy of 'The Canterbury Tales' from High School.

What was kind of weird about flipping through it though, was all of my old highlighting. I had a teacher that encouraged it, durting my high school years no non-library/school book was safe from my flourescent pens. After college I stopped doing it, just like I stopped dog earing my paperbacks. But now I look back at this book and I have NO idea why I've singled out any of those particular lines to highlight. Did I think it was pretty? Did it illustrate a point I was trying to make in a paper? What was I thinking?

I've recently taken the highlighter back up again. But only sometimes. It depends on whether the book is art and pleasure, or a research tool. The line is a little fuzzy. Some 'tool' books are just too pretty to mark up, like 'The Science of Leondardo' that had gorgeous creamy paper and brown ink that echoes da Vinci's notebooks. It would be a crime to take pink highlighter to that. So instead it got flagged with dozens of post it notes. And then when I have time I take all my post it notes and highlights and throw them up in the wiki Flidget gave me to keep said notes in. So I will always have this oddball collection of notes and ideas when I need them.

I wonder if I will remember what these notes & highlights were for in 10 years.
kaitou: (Not Being Seen)
This year for my birthday I'm treating myself to a writing conference. A friend of mine from the Dayton group was going and said, 'come along, it will be fun and educational!' I thought to myself, 'well, I'm not working on a romance novel, though I have a few ideas kicking around in the back of my head, but it would still be a lot of fun to hang out with other writers, particularly my friend, and the workshops all look incredibly valuable no matter what genre you're writing. OK, sign me up!"

So I agreed to go, signed up, and found out that I'll actually even get to pitch to an agent.

This sent me off into another tizzy, because I'm not working on a romance. But that is not the point of this post. The point is that my friend and I were talking, and she mentioned that she's going to wear a suit to her pitch. Her day job is a lawyer, and her writing has law elements, so she's using it as another card to play in her pitch.

I joked back that I was thinking of wearing my steel-toed boots and safety glasses and pitching a novel called 'Production Line Passion.' And now I can only think of the jokes. I mean, at my old job the company motto was 'sharing the pleasure of production with our customers.'

Just think of all the possibilities!

  • Everything was mass produced...except for their love.

  • A Riveting story

  • Sparks fly on the spot weld Line

  • He'd poka-yoked his heart, but there was no countermeasure for her love


I could keep going, but I'd only get deeper into manufacturing terminology.
kaitou: (Hmph)
Don't you hate it when you have a great idea for a story, and then you find out that canon...or reality...does not fit your plan?

Ah well, back to the drawing board.

Writing Foo

Jan. 5th, 2007 09:00 am
kaitou: (Damn I'm Good)
Last night I went to the first meeting of my new writing critique group. What a blast!! I hope I'll feel the same way next week when MY stuff gets critiqued. But I think we've got a very smart, good critique group shaping up. Not many people attended last night, but I think that the feedback was excellent. I thought it was as good as Clarion.

It was interesting having so many lawyers in the group, which really put a different spin on things. Before we got started with the critiquing there was a long discussion about copywrite and confidentiality. And after an equally involved conversation about pen names, and whether or not they're necessary. So of course I had to tell the story about O. Henry and Anne McCaffery and how my goal is to write a story about dragons giving each other the wrong gifts and no one will ever believe that my name is my real name. Honestly, the only thought I've given to pen names is for writing in different genres. 'In for a Penny' is a meringue of a fantasy, while I hope that the Victorian Hong Kong stuff will coalesce into something more of a gingerbread in density after a retooling. But, of course, as I mentioned in the group, that's really putting the cart ahead of the horse. Names can wait until I have an agent...or, like...an actual manuscript.

One of the women in the group has a tendency to read very very deeply into things. Lots of comments like "I can see a very strong sense of economic underpinnings to this story. A lot of it revolves around money and the economy," for a book which ultimately is pretty much about sentient cabbage. I can't wait to see what she makes of my brand of crack!fic. Since I'm not ready with the first bit of Penny rewrite, I'm inflicting the First Contact story on them.

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