General things I don’t like / DNW: sexual violence or threats thereof; gore for the sake of gore; death of the POV character; trauma to eyes, hands, or teeth. Larger person physically dominating smaller one, comeplay, non-con, D/s-type punishment. Infidelity, first-person POV, crossovers (exceptions noted).
( Jupiter Ascending, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Downton Abbey, Supernatural, Saga )
I've been picking away at due South. It's just so cute and fuzzy, you guys!
In reading I'm on a Patricia McKillip kick while also working my way through the Hugo-nominated novels. The Three-Body Problem had a lot of interesting ideas, and I love the creepiness as the mystery unfolds over the first 2/3. It's been many moons since I read a book that cared this much about pure science, rather than applied. All that talk about the three-body problem was almost as good as math. :D The backstory dumps that come after the reveal just kill the momentum, though. And now I'm a little way into The Goblin Emperor, which so far is a fine and pleasant read but has not distinguished itself to me at all. I'm also hoping some more women show up soon. (NO SPOILERS. Remember I am a delicate flower about spoilers!)
I've actually read more in the past month than I feel like I have in a really long time. This makes me very happy.
That said, I'm so behind on comics. I have a whole pile I need to get to. In a few weeks, maybe. And I see there are new issues of Copperhead out! \o/
I watched the first ep and really liked it but also it was kind of intense, so I haven't watched any more. Basically I need a watching buddy who will hold my virtual hand (not necessarily in realtime) so I can nerve up and continue. I am promised canon femslash down the road, and I really want to get to it!
On one hand, there's something very satisfying and concrete about having a clear goal for what I want to do. On the other hand, that means it's easy to get frustrated when the words I am writing do not, in fact, achieve that goal. I think this is part of the reason I had SO MANY false starts when writing the girl!Sid D/s AU that posted in January - I knew what I wanted, and I kept having to backtrack because what I'd written didn't get where I wanted. I think I cut 6k out of an eventual 9k story. Here's hoping that doesn't happen this time.
The thing is, this is completely the opposite of how I write a lot of fic (and original fic, too, for that matter). Very often I'll start with a scenario - "A meets B" or "A, B, and C go on a road trip and develop feelings" or "A gets pregnant" - and then work out what that means for the characters. I think of this as bottom-up writing. Emotional beats develop more organically, which sounds nice until you look at ivy climbing up a wall and realize organic is often code for "messy and nonlinear with a lot of unnecessary side tangents." If your writing strategy is "plant the seed and then let the story grow of its own accord," that's going to mean pruning. It also means that the story can't be hurried along, and no matter how you push at it, it might take much longer to grow to maturity than you would like. (See: my Illyria fic. Five years and counting!)
Anyway. That is my writing thought for the day. Is there one of these strategies that you guys use more often than the other? Do neither of them fit your mode of writing at all? Talk writing at me. :)
golden showers (bring may flowers) (2417 words) by Snickfic
Fandom: Hockey RPF
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Sidney Crosby/Evgeni Malkin
Characters: Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin
Additional Tags: Watersports, Scent Marking, Alpha/Beta/Omega Dynamics, Possessive Behavior, Kink Exploration, Cuddling & Snuggling
Gonch was right – it wasn’t common. Still, at least once a week, Geno caught a whiff of some omega that smelled like the inside of a urinal. He filed it away as one of those weird things Americans did, and he didn’t think about it.
Mostly he didn’t think about it.
This is what I did with my weekend, rather than... anything productive. I snagged the prompt on the meme because I thought it'd be easy and then spent much of the next twenty-four hours angsting in chat about worldbuilding and how my characters wouldn't stop TALKING. I just wanted to write about pee, geez.
This is a kink fic, folks. The worldbuilding here is a little bit silly. The fic is also REALLY SAPPY. WHY SO SAPPY, SID AND GENO?
Waste Not (1238 words) by Snickfic
Fandom: Hockey RPF
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Sidney Crosby/Evgeni Malkin
Characters: Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin
Additional Tags: Belly Kink, Belly Rubs, Stuffing
Sidney eats more than he should, and Geno enjoys the results more than he expects.
This one is older, and I had it stuck in the anonymous collection for a long time because I wasn't sure I wanted to own up to it, but here it is. There will probably be a sequel to this one at some point.
* We barely scraped into the playoffs, but we went head-to-head against the best team in the league (by points, anyway) and fought them every inch.
* Every loss was a one-goal loss. We held them to two goals per game for all four of their wins, the second time in NHL history a series has been won this way.
* We did this with one top four defenseman, a bottom pairing, a seventh D, and two AHL call-ups.
* Fleury was spectacular. Apparently #fleurydeservedbetter was trending in Pittsburgh last night, and it wasn't a lie.
* We fought SO HARD. We made mistakes, and the Rangers made us pay, and we took so many more penalties than we should, but my gosh, we left it ALL on the ice. It's too bad we couldn't get another bounce or two go our way, because history is going to remember this series as NYR trouncing us 4-1, but SO MUCH is missing from that metric.
* Now we get to go heal.
* Next year: Letang, Maatta, Pouliot. Think about that.
* That Lovejoy trade isn't looking any better than it did to start with.
* That Perron trade looks a lot worse than it did to start with.
* Poor Ehrhoff. Don't think he got out of this season what he'd hoped.
* Flower deserved better. Yeah.
That's a lot of good mixed in with the bad, but I'm still so sad that this how we went out. I'm going to keep being sad for a while.
I'm collecting post-game and post-season links that I think are worth reading (ie, not stupid).
ECQ Game 5 – This is the end. Pens lose 2-1 (OT), lose series 4-1, by Meesh Shanmugam
Losing always hurts, but the Penguins didn’t lose their “composure”, didn’t have to deal with a Fleury meltdown, and did keep the series close despite what a 4-1 series loss may suggest. These are all valuable memories and lessons moving forward for the team. For once, they will go into the next postseason not with thoughts of how they failed, or blew it, or melted down. Next postseason will be built from a hard-fought series despite not having the necessary pieces to win. In a transition year, the Penguins may have built a foundation for another franchise upswing. There are plenty of reasons for hope next year.
Penguins Season Ends With Fourth 2-1 Loss to Rangers, by Angie Carducci
A team that went into a month-long freefall down the stretch and snuck into the playoffs by beating the league’s worst team on the last day of the regular season found a way to compete within a goal of the Rangers for five consecutive games.
Penguins - Rangers - Game 5 postgame, by Seth Rorabaugh
-This was the best they could do. These Pittsburgh Penguins put everything they could into this series. They darn near played it perfectly within their limitations. But they were extremely limited. When Taylor Chorney, Brian Dumoulin and Scott Wilson are in the lineup instead of Kris Letang, Christian Ehrhoff and Pascal Dupuis, the same expectations simply can not be met. Yes, injuries happen to every team. But they simply crippled this team.
-One of the real shames of this brief but fierce five-game battle is that the brilliance of Fleury in this series will nearly be forgotten. He was the main reason this team got into the playoffs and he was the only reason they had a sniff at even beating the Rangers in any of these games. With two consecutive sturdy playoff seasons under his belt, there should be not doubt in his status as THE franchise goaltender for the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Game 5 Impressions: Rangers 2, Pens 1 (OT), by Sam Kasan and Michelle Crechiolo
My biggest takeaway from Game 5 is that the Pens truly did leave it all out on the ice – especially in the third period and overtime. And while I know there are no moral victories in the playoffs and the fact remains that Pittsburgh’s season is over, with their backs against the ropes they fought valiantly and put forth one heck of an effort to try and extend this series.
Honestly I just really wanted us to get in, and now we're here, so good job us despite everything. Now we have a solid four days of rest without any games, and when we get back we'll have a full six D again. And hey, at least we have no expectations on us, which is novel and maybe a kind of luxury. We're the underdog, for the first time in ages.
What follows are a bunch of links for my own encouragement; they all propose that maybe possibly the Pens aren't going to be a total disaster in round one against the Presidents' Trophy-winning Rangers. (Not included: the article whose writer thinks the Pens will get swept.)
Pittsburgh vs New York is Process vs PDO (hey, if ever-cranky Ryan Wilson is offering hope, that means something)
Stanley Cup Favorites: Who Are the Real Contenders - somehow the Pens are at the very top of this list, although it doesn't account for recent injuries at all
Switch Flipping Time
NHL Playoffs: 5 ways the Pittsburgh Penguins could pull an upset
Why Not the Pittsburgh Penguins?
Pens vs Rangers By the Numbers
(It doesn't hurt that other than the upcoming Sid/Geno exchange, I have no exchanges right now to distract me. I'm not even tempted anymore. I don't have any idea how long it'll be until that exchange bug starts to hit again.)
But sometimes, even at this pace that feels glacial, I have to stop, because I don't know what happens next. And this is not really a story where I can bull my way to the next plot point; it doesn't really have a plot. This fic is all about the journey. So sometimes I just have to stop and let the next part come to me. I have to think about it as I'm driving or in the shower, as I go to sleep. I have to daydream.
I realize that this sounds like a very ~artsy writing technique, for good or ill. It is also so inefficient. I get impatient, because I want the next bit of story to happen NOW. Or I want a LOT of the story to happen now. And meanwhile the fic continues to come to me in installments of 200-400 words.
Characters: Meg, Sam
Rating / Words: 650 words / R for blood and general nastiness
Contents / Warnings: violence, blood, death of children, possession, self-harm, noncon arousal, sexist slurs
Spoilers: through S2 Born Under a Bad Sign
Summary: This is no well-broke ride; this pony tries to take the bit every damn time, and it’s a tight rein Meg keeps.
A/N: Written for quickreaver as part of a prompt subversion challenge for spnspiration. My prompt was any variation of Sam and Meg - "Love hurts, love scars, love wounds and mars,". However, I think this might be a subversion only in the sense that no one is going to understand how it relates to the prompt at all. :\ I swear I had this whole thing about Sam doing the thing he does here and how it related to love, but then the horse metaphor took over. :P Can we pretend I was subverting a prompt for pony play?
DARK. Mind the warnings! Can also be read at AO3.
( She rode horses in some past existence, human or demon, who knows. )
As far as I know, there hasn't been a single-ship exchange before in this fandom, and clearly that meant Verity and I needed to make one. Sid/Geno/other threesome and moresome requests also allowed! (One of my requests is for a sedoretu. :D)
Come write the thing! Or at least reblog the thing and spread the word! :D!
( GIF EVIDENCE )
It's just a really terrible attempt at clearing the puck by Smith, and yet it's so wonderful. My favorite part is definitely Sutter turning around, seeing the puck in the net, and going, "Oh yay! Goal for us!" Him standing there flat-footed with his arms in the air: best.
Post-Gazette David Molinari was on the scene after the game, and he reports, Sutter, on Mike Smith's clearing attempt that hit his rear end and landed in the Arizona net: "That’s my touch around the net."
Or his tushy. Whichever.
Just. Why. It all just looks like such a mess, and I don't in the least understand why anyone thinks that I as a consumer would be remotely interested in trying to keep track of it all. Does management really have so little idea of how unappealing and bewildering and off-putting it all is?
My decision earlier this year to drop Marvel for being just not worth it: confirmed so, so hard.
( lines and links )
I finished Agent Carter's first season a week or so ago. Overall, I was utterly delighted by it; it's easily my favorite MCU offering. (Second would probably be CA:TWS.) With Peggy in particular it kept not doing exactly the thing I was afraid of it doing, and this pleased me quite a lot.
( finale thoughts )
As for hockey, wow what a game last night. I am kind of cracking up that we lost to the Avs and then beat two of the best teams in the west on back-to-back nights. The last third of that game last night was super tense as it became clear that the first goal was going to be the only goal.
I cannot say enough about Flower. People were saying that was his best game of the year so far, and I have to agree. He looked so good, so calm, such great position and rebound control. None of those LA shots looked even close to going in, despite the Pens' defensive breakdowns.
All that, and he shut out LA both games this season. I am so smug.
( Other things that happened )
And this after running all over the top of the Ducks the night before. Good work team.
The Wicked + the Divine through #8 - I feel like I missed an issue here, too. Also, am I supposed to be doing outside research? Because I am getting more and more lost among the pantheon. I have no idea what happened in this issues, basically, and I'm not sure how much longer McKelvie's pencils and Wilson's colors are going to tide me over.
Black Widow through #14 - this is fine? This is fine. We're gearing up to a confrontation with Chaos, finally, thank goodness.
Ody-C through #2 - I have broken up with this comic. Yes, at issue 2. I was so excited for "genderswapped Odyssey" and Fraction killed that enthusiasm dead in one. fell. swoop.
Saga through #25 - EVERYTHING IS TERRIBLE. /o\ Except the dragon hunt; that's going pretty okay so far. (I'm side-eyeing that "swelled head" comment something fierce, though.)
Give a prompt. Get a prompt. Subvert a prompt. Curious?
Oh hey, another SPN fic exchange thingy! A little bit like Spring Fling in that it has a prompt, a character, and a 500 word minimum, but a much longer lead time and also you are supposed to twist the prompt while sticking to the letter of it, which sounds like lots of fun. :D (Even though I'm not sure my prompt is really great for twistiness. Oh well. Hopefully rust and linen will charge someone's imagination anyway.)
* spnspringfling is open for signups! This is quite possibly my favorite fannish event of any kind, just because of how it's structured - low min AND a max word count, prompts but you don't know your recip, tight deadline, anon posting. If you're into SPN at all, definitely consider giving this a try. It's way fun.
* You know that 3 Sentence Ficathon I linked to a while back? It has 3500 comments now and is still going. It's like people are pining for the prompt memes of yore. Or something.
* On the paucity of data available in women's sports (shocking, I know)
* Marc-Andre Fleury, ruiner of things
* My Geno/Flower feelings, let me show you them. Also did you know that they roomed together for the latter half of the 2011-2012 season? Did you? HMMM. :D
* The Pens did a Casino night for charity. Apparently Flower kept tossing cards on the ground if he didn't like them, and meanwhile Geno gave good face, as usual. I have about 25 posts in my Tumblr likes; IDK how I'm supposed to choose which ones to reblog.
* This article by Pascal Dupuis about his two blood clots in a year is really a gut-wrenching read.
* This failure to score a goal is like how Charlie Chaplin would fail to score a goal.
* Have a bunch of hockey microfic. Only a tweet long each. There's a bunch that are awfully fun.
And now some pictures of Geno's face that are currently making me happy. ( images and gifs, also one of Flower )
I was explaining to someone elsewhere about how it's a particular kind of female power fantasy. You get to have all the cool sparkly space princess dresses, but be actually in charge, not just an appendage to your space boyfriend.
And you notice how once she got off Earth, there didn't seem to be any sexism? People were manipulative or abusive or murderous or helpful in all sorts of ways, but it didn't seem gendered in the slightest.
Reasons to Love Agent Carter by Tansy Rayner Roberts expresses perfectly all the things I am loving about that show (although I'm an ep behind - I have ambitions of catching up today).
* Yesterday found myself in weird position of being resident expert on classic rock as found in SPN, despite knowing basically nothing about classic rock generally. In the process, though, I found myself remembering just how much of what I loved about early SPN was the aesthetic: music, cinematography, etc. I wonder whether, if the show still sounded and LOOKED that good, I might still be watching.
And say what you like about ships or family dynamics or whatever, I think that the aesthetic was a lot of what the early fandom was responding to, too, even though they expressed it in terms like "sexual tension" and "codependence" and "h/c."
Dang it, now I want an SPN rewatch. At least of S1.
* Geno is skating again, will be going on the Canada trip, and may well be playing again as early as Wednesday! Which means chances of him playing against Canucks on Saturday are VERY HIGH! :D!!!
* (In case you missed it: I am going to visit flamebyrd and see the Pens play the Canucks. I am a little excited about this. Tiny bit.)
* Speaking of Geno, this gif is giving me life:
( !! )
* My hockey stream the other day had multiple completely unironic ads for a farmers' dating site. I kept waiting for the joke, and it never came.
ANYWAY. My fic for the holiday hockey exchange posted a couple of days ago! And here it is! Writing this one involved a lot of angst and flailing on my part, which I've written some about under the cut.
Title: Switch Hitter
Fandom: Hockey RPF
Words / Rating: 9600 words / R for kink
Contains: D/s AU, switching, kink negotiation, internalized sexism, spanking, verbal humiliation, offscreen platonic D/s between Sid and third parties
Summary: Geno's a dom and only a dom, Sidney's a sub who doms sometimes but only because people keep asking her nicely, and all their feelings for each other are entirely platonic. Yeah right.
( WRITERLY ANGST )
Agent Carter - saw the third episode, loved it. Love the Peggy+Angie friendship, love how complicated things are. Jarvis is wonderful. Everything looks so pretty. My feelings are simple, here. Oh, and in this ep we learn that Howard Stark is actualfax Blood Stupid Johnson.
Sleepy Hollow - first two issues of a mini by Marguerite Bennett and Jorge Coelho. Two of the things I thought were out were delayed, so I picked these up instead because I'd been eyeing them every time I went in the store. (It was the Phil Noto covers, darn it.) They're a lot more directly tied into the show than I was hoping - a lot of references to stuff I didn't know. The banter is good, though, and Noelle Stevenson (of Nimona) has little two-page mini comics in the back, which was a pleasant surprise.
Copperhead - finished its first arc. I continue to enjoy everything this comic chooses to be. Liked the resolution to the mystery, am intrigued by these "Natives" that we murder with impunity but also have a treaty with and therefore can't prosecute by ordinary means; hope we see more of them. Also needed: more Clara, Broo, Ishmael (desert hermit android!), and Mrs. Sewell.
If this comic has sounded interesting to you at all, definitely check out the first trade when it comes out next month.
* the charms and (mostly) pitfalls of massive shared continuity, especially re: crossovers and events
* things I like getting canceled before their potential is realized and developed
* the hamfisted, po-faced earnestness of the things that DO get lots of issues. (If I never see a superhero attempt to talk about politics again, it will be TOO SOON.)
* the vulnerability of any given comic to editorial whims and artist availability
I talked about most of those things a little bit here, and it hasn't changed much, I guess.
So, the result is that right now this is what I'm reading with enthusiasm:
* Ms. Marvel (still my fav Marvel book)
* Gotham Academy (teen girls and basically zero dependence on outside continuity)
* The Wicked + The Divine (because Jamie McKelvie, basically)
* Bitch Planet
* a bunch of new Image things I'm looking forward to soon
And these are books I'm reading until my Marvel subscription runs out:
* Black Widow (although I have to say I actually liked the interwoven story structure of #12 quite a lot, even though it was only a set-up issue)
* Storm (love the art, but the story doesn't seem to be going anywhere in particular)
* Loki: Agent of Asgard (I have no idea what's going on with Loki anymore, if I ever did, and the crossover mini that I didn't read just compounded the problem)
* Captain America and the Mighty Avengers (wow do I hate what Axis did to this book. I hate it SO MUCH. And somehow Luke Ross is bizarrely Greg Land-like with his faces? Is that just me? I feel like I still haven't escape Land-face.)
* Pacific Rim - As pretty as I remember; I grinned through the entire opening sequence, again.
* Dragon Hunters - oddball little animated movie that I'm thinking about requesting for YT and will also be foisting upon everyone within range (fair warning).
* Leverage S2 and S3 - okay, something terrible has happened since I last watched this show, because I'm finding Eliot pretty appealing now, despite the terrible hair. Has he been getting more character stuff to do in S2, maybe? IDK, right now my feelings are all Eliot feelings. (Look at me! I'm watching TV again! Two different shows in one week!)
* Saga #1-18
* The Walking Dead #1-48 (!!)
* The Manhattan Projects #1-10
* The Wicked + the Divine #1-5
* about fifteen other things
Seriously, this is a ridiculous deal. AND you're not paying Amazon or going through Comixology's hinky comics viewer, which is a plus, IMO.
EDIT: now with a link! *facepalm*