kiki_eng: Annie Monroe of The Like wearing sunglasses (bandom) (Annie wearing sunglasses)
[personal profile] cosmic_llin is taking suggestions for vids about revolution, and is especially interested in less known or non-Western stories.

I went looking through my bookmarks, and 12/14 of the vids I came up with on my first run-through featured women. Since my fannish roots are actually m/m slash I feel this is a pretty significant percentage. I didn't really notice, actually, what a large number of them were about women, but I watched a chunk of them in quick succession and one of them is a baseball vid I recced earlier this month by [personal profile] trelkez - it's called Revolution and is about a women's baseball team, on the surface at least.

One Girl Revolution by [personal profile] arefadedaway and She's a Rebel by [livejournal.com profile] kaydeefalls are multifandom vids. [[personal profile] thingswithwings wrote some interesting meta, ladies (en masse) are awesome, about that particular genre in 2011.] ...and then there's [personal profile] kuwdora's SG-1 vid about Vala Mal Doran vid, Just a Girl.

SG-1, so, evil empire: check ...and Vala's generally a shit-disturber, so it made the list of vids to check out, and then I watched it. The No Doubt lyrics are pretty intense: "this world is forcing me to hold your hand, because I'm just a girl, little ol' me, well don't let me out of your sight" and "don't let me have any rights, oh, I've had it up to here." The vid ends with a shot of Vala about to burn at the stake, a shot of her in a kitchen, followed by a clip of her finishing up a fight and punching a man's lights out. (It reminds me of [personal profile] kuwdora's Hook Shot, which is a multifandom vid with a lot of punching, and ends with a girl shooting the camera out.)

Watching all of those female-centric vids about revolution have made me wonder. Is the act of being female an act of revolution? Does existing, as a woman, mean that whatever you do, you're going to occupy space that someone thinks isn't yours? Do we have a vidding canon that supports something along those lines?

There's a lot of speculative fiction on the fandom list for those 14 vids, but I'm becoming increasingly convinced that reality is by far the scariest source material out there, because, look, there's a reason we have all these vids about women fighting oppressive regimes.
kiki_eng: striped mug held by a woman wearing a sleeveless top (Hawaii Five-0) (mug held by Kono)
[personal profile] calvinahobbes prompted me with this after I'd put people talking to me about femslashy things on my wishlist for [community profile] snowflake_challenge. February is coming, which means that, as I have for the last six years, the only fanworks that I'll be consuming or creating are female-centric ones, and since I'm a shipper there's a lot of femslash in that - Femslash February.

I tend to read more slash than anything else during the rest of the year. I like reading a lot of variations of the same story told over, and over. There's more slash so there are more variations available to me there and the size of slash fandom makes it easier to find works. I have deep roots there and I realised back in 2010 that it was really easy for me to read slash, but that I wanted to read more stories about women. Cutting male-centric fanworks out of my life completely was the easiest way, for me, to make sure that I consume fanworks about women. So, I sort of live in my own self-created fannish lesbian utopia for a month. Since I've started doing that the amount of fanworks I read about women has gone up in the other months, too; it's been a success for me, and I've made some really cool discoveries because of it. It's led me to all kinds of canons and there are all kinds of awesome femslash fanworks.

I need stories about women in my life. I need stories about queer women in my life. I am a woman, and I am queer. Those stories can be like water. Sometimes I'll run into a queer woman who will say something like, "It's a piece of shit, but it's got lesbians in it, so I'll be watching it." ...and, oh man. There's a Star Wars gif going around tumblr of Rey abruptly stopping when a ship is blown up in front of her, saying "the garbage will do" and abruptly turning and heading toward the Millenium Falcon; it's captioned with something like "when you have read all the good fic about your OTP." ...and that's it, it's that feeling, only I feel like very few of us have ever gotten used to consistently good content, we just want to see queer ladies represented and we don't have a whole lot of choices. I have watched some terrible, terrible media because of this.

Representation is so important. There's a quote by José Esteban Muñoz: "Heteronormative culture makes queers think that both past and future do not belong to them. All we are allowed to imagine is barely surviving in the present.” Stories are how we tell each other about our past and our future. Erasing queers from histories, from stories, can make it feel like we're not supposed to be here at all.

More. )
kiki_eng: Annie Monroe of The Like wearing sunglasses (bandom) (Annie wearing sunglasses)
Right. So one of the great things about humanity and biology and the reality that we actually live in is that there's such a range of everything. People experience the world differently; it's pretty cool.

For me, reading stories about characters with heightened senses is both delightful and incredibly baffling sometimes. Sometimes I have a better sense of smell than a supernatural creature; it's a little absurd, to me.

I mean, it makes sense! You write about what you know and there are people out there with a poor sense of smell; the world of smells is not really something they experience, so they don't write it. Probably there are some people writing fic about vampires, werewolves, sentinels and so forth that straight-up forget that smell is one of the senses, or maybe they steer away from it because they don't know how it works.

There are a lot of fics out that I think of as, like, smell AUS - where characters smell of things that make no logical sense because they don't spend a lot of time around metal, or thyme, or sod, or fresh-baked bread. It is totally possible to smell like all of those things, on a regular basis, even, but you sort of have to be immersed in them. Humans, in this universe at least, don't tend to give off scents spontaneously like they've hidden a selection of scented candles about themselves and pull out the correct one suddenly to light it, like, I AM ANGRY, TIME TO SET THE MOOD WITH PINE. Like, most humans don't smell like trees, because they are not trees.

I actually really like smell AUs, and I think they're interesting. The genre is sort of a combination of works that are autopilot purple prose and others that are more deliberately AU. They don't match up with how I experience the world.

My sense of smell varies a fair bit. Some days I have to be standing like three inches away from someone to really, really smell them and other days it's like PLEASE DO NOT STAND ANY CLOSER THAN YOUR CURRENT THREE METRES, IN FACT, PLEASE GO AWAY. I had a really bad day a few months ago. Someone asked me what was wrong and I was like I can smell everything. When I got home that night I put my clothing in really weird places and left my keys in the door. (For me, that is extremely out of sorts.) In retrospect I am pretty sure I looked like I wanted to murder someone - someone actually jumped out of my way at one point.

On an average day it's not bad for me. Strong perfume is an issue but I suspect that's some kind of allergy thing and not really about the intensity of the smell.

I worked with someone once who smelled of a butcher's shop and perfume - their other job and their desperate attempt to cover that scent up when they had to go straight from one job to the other. People who work in a coffee shop are likely to smell of it - it gets in their clothes. Sometimes people who live on a farm smell of it. I think most people can smell that.

What people smell of, to me, is mostly what they're wearing and whatever beauty products they use. Soap, laundry detergent, hair gel, shampoo, conditioner, aftershave, perfume, deodorant. When my ex changed soaps I could tell when I was standing close. I avoid changing my own products because I hate getting used to a new scent. (It doesn't take me long; I just really dislike it. Some scents I never get used to.)

I can't sniff someone and then rattle off all the products they're using. I might be able to learn to do that - learn what all the scents are and how they fit together - but that would be hard for me, and seriously, what the fuck would I do with that skill?

Most of the time I don't really pay attention to what I smell, because, for me, people don't really communicate with smell. My nose isn't so finely tuned that I can pick up on, like, okay - I think it's hilarious that one of Derek Hale's superpowers, according to fandom, is the ability to sniff out erections and other symptoms of sexual receptivity at, like, the slightest stirring of arousal. (I feel like this is one of the many reasons his life is terrible.) Sexual arousal absolutely has a smell but you have to be pretty far along before that's a thing I'm going to pick up on. I'll pick up things like physical exertion and if someone doesn't have great hygiene - shit and piss and sweat and sometimes a kind of rancidness. I can smell when I've been drinking coffee - this is one of the reasons I don't drink a lot of coffee, even though I like the taste; I don't like the smell that comes out of my skin afterwards.

I've been walking around with people and been like, Okay, where's the Indian restaurant? and no one else can smell it and I don't figure it out until like a block and a half later when I see it across the street about 150 metres away.

I don't really think my sense of smell is extraordinary; I feel pretty average most days, but, like, I remember zeroing in on someone and having a disproportionate interest in them because they smelled amazing to me, like leather and eucalyptus, and their house smelled amazing, too, like green, because there were so many plants, and also, again, like eucalyptus - I never figured out where that smell was coming from; I think it might have been some kind of cream. They may have smelled nicer, too, because they ate really healthy.

...and somewhat embarrassingly in retrospect, I dated someone who wore leather and used a eucalyptus shaving cream. (I had not connected those dots together until now and am sort of personally offended.) I definitely move towards people who smell good to me and away from people who smell bad. Smokers aren't a real favourite with me. There's something that I pick up from ~50 year old men on the bus that they're wearing that smells sickly to me. There's a lot of perfumes I don't like and a few that I really do.

If I'm looking for a seat on public transit and I walk by someone who smells good I tend to sit near them on autopilot, which I sort of feel is a creepy werewolf thing, but I do not really have any qualms about this. It's mostly pretty subconscious and it's not like anyone else would notice any kind of unusual behaviour. I sat behind a guy last week who smelled amazing, like coffee and something sweet, but not sweetened coffee and it was great, A+ transit smell, but there was a point at which another smell interfered and it was sad, like cleaners coming into a rose-filled lobby with something incredibly bleach-heavy.

I tend to choose to surround myself with scents that are neutral or subtle. I'm particular about what I choose to wash my clothes with and if I'm picking out a product I'll probably go with the one that claims to be scentless or have no perfume - that tends to be safer for me.

Cooking smells are sort of annoying to me when they're not my own, because I'm sort of easily suggestible. Like, I pretty much never eat fries - but I have neighbours now who regularly make fish and chips, so I'm exposed to that smell, and (I'm a vegetarian) so I end up eating poutine and making sweet potato fries way more than I normally would. I ate a lot of fried rice and pizza when I lived somewhere else, for the same reason. The smell of cooking flows through open windows and through the cracks in doors and between floorboards.

So, that's a little bit of what smell is like for me, and why I've read fic and gone Sidney Crosby is a Sentinel? ...and he is standing where? He totally knows what is being cooked in that other room. What is this factual inaccuracy. *grumble* Like, it's fine, it's just weird to me, and really obvious that the writer isn't as tuned into their sense of smell as I am. Everyone's different.

Hopefully this will be useful to someone writing about werewolves or something and not just one big exposition of my personal weirdness.
kiki_eng: text: "i ate ALL your bees" (Black Books) ("I ate all your bees.")
I'm looking for meta about reccing - anything you can link me would be awesome; I am trying to get my hands on as much as I can.

I've gone through the [livejournal.com profile] metafandom newsletters on LJ looking for stuff and found a lot. I finished that yesterday and was the most excited person because I had finished all of metafandom, until I realised that, of course, I hadn't, because I still have all of Dreamwidth's [community profile] metafandom to go through. I am at that point in the research phase where the answer to "Will I ever finish researching?" is "NFI." I think I probably have around a hundred links now, but have zero interest in counting to confirm that currently, but I finished going through metafandom's LJ!

I have lots of meta tabs and stuff I still need to go through, still, but feel this is sort of a good time in the process to ask for more links and talk about how I spent my summer vacation. Or okay, not really that last bit, but I have spent a fairly solid chunk of time in the past couple months reading through and skimming the metafandom newletter on LJ and doing the same with the linked stuff, and have decided to write a little bit about that.

The deleted and purged journals were and are sad to me and there's also a good chunk of locked entries in those links now. There would be fascinating excerpts and I would follow the link to... nothing. (It was awful.) It's been interesting being in a space after the party has died down, basically, and it's interesting skimming past all of this meta that I'm not looking for right now, just seeing bits of the titles and excerpts for the most part. One of the things that was really interesting, doing that, is looking at the issues that have cropped up again years later - there have been and are, recurring discussions: Slash and Gay (What is slash? What is gay? Why is a predominately female group writing mostly male slash?); Fandom: We're Here and We Are Pretty Queer, Actually? (There's a way higher percentage of us that ID as some form of queer/not straight than there's supposed to be in the general population.)

...and I found some old ace meta that I suspect a few people on my flist may be interested in. (One link totally demonstrates that cyclical discussions thing.)

[meta-ish] why can't we all just get along? (said the spider to the fly) by [livejournal.com profile] duskwings (2006, April 3)
I guess that my very, very long point is that ... I don't see why there is wank over asexuality versus ship, when you can just as easily ignore the other side and go back to the porn. Or ... the not-porn, as the case may be. Of course, you could say the same of ship wars, so I guess that's kind of a moot point.

Being an asexual slasher. by [livejournal.com profile] nike_victory (2006, July 1)
I saw this poll through metafandom about sexuality and fandom and whether we're all as straight as people seem to think we are. I thought it was a great idea, except I couldn't actually answer the poll unless I wanted to skew the results. Since I didn't want that, I decided to comment on it, only to find my comment becoming much too long and rather off topic.


It was interesting, basically, seeing what fandom keeps coming back to, looking about a place that I no longer consider to be the primary fannish forum as I still try to negotiate my relationship with that I consider to have been LJ's replacement, and reflecting on the differences. I think with meta on tumblr that it is still cyclical to some degree - there are still flare-ups of discussion, but a good chunk of it has become embedded in the culture. There's a decent amount of overlap between "social justice tumblr" and fandom on tumblr, and I think that filtering is harder on tumblr and reblogging makes transmitting content much easier, so there's a lot more discussion about racism and sexism and so forth that's moving around tumblr, which I think is good. I think that fandom is maybe doing better on some things because of how tumblr works.

That is sort of a thing, basically, with looking at all of this meta stuff, that I am thinking about all of this meta stuff, and there is sort of a danger of creating meta. I mean, I totally want there to be more meta about reccing - all of the meta about reccing, apparently - and am wondering where the post titled something like A Room of One's Own ...and an internet connection: Feminism and Fandom is and have an increasingly strong desire to write about fanworks and fannish activity.

There also came a point in looking at all of this meta stuff where I clicked on [livejournal.com profile] flambeau's the fannish review and felt a deep personal connection to it. That work is sort of what going through [livejournal.com profile] metafandom has been like for me, especially since I have just been skimming a fair chunk of things and doing that is like BNF. Meritocracy flist readership ego club anon hate. Blah blah blah. ([livejournal.com profile] flambeau does this much better than I am doing here.) and my brain is a tiny bit meta mush despite my efforts to pace myself, basically.

Fandom's cool, though. Meta's cool, and if you have meta on reccing or know where I should be looking for it, that would be so very cool of you to share.
kiki_eng: light purple lilacs with soft unfocused blue-purple background (lilacs)
[personal profile] sylvaine posted when will reality finally be my escapist fantasy? what's rapidly coming up to a month ago now, and it made me think, about the stories that I've written, read, and the reality that I live in.

Like [personal profile] sylvaine "I don't want to read about how awful people are to one another." Generally. I read a lot more unhappy stories when I was younger. I think that was part of letting in all sorts of experiences and discovering the world and learning to process and being a teenager and having all kinds of feelings. I've written -isms and despair in fic when those were part of my reality and things I needed to process; processing and expression and analysis through art is a thing.

I read more fanfic than pro work these days, and that's not unrelated to a desire to escape. I don't want to read someone's prejudices; I am less patient with that kind of bullshit than I used to be. I am more assertive of that not being worth my time. There's this thing that happens when you primarily read m/m and f/f fic - you don't tend to run into a lot of homophobia, which hasn't always been the case. I think that earlier fic is more likely to contain homophobia, that there was more of a sense of pervasiveness that led to that getting written into fic, that it was a carry-over from reality. Mind, I'm not actually that old and I haven't been in fandom for that long, and my first experiences with fic were also coloured with being a teenager and a feeling of otherness. There are stories I read then that I don't read now because I'm not interested in them; I'm interested in different narratives now.

In Stargate: Atlantis and SG-1 fandom DADT was a huge thing and source of angst and unhappiness in stories because it was also those things in real life. There was a subset of stories in SGA that I loved a lot that were about how DADT was shit. All of the stories that touched on DADT were about that a little, but the ones I loved were about changing the rules or had McKay berating politicians. Those were really satisfying stories for me. They were angry and hopeful and determined and about action. I believe in stories like that, that plot out change, and I want to see stories with -isms in them, just so that I can see it called out, because there's some shit that we need to talk about if we want to change it.

The corner of fandom I hang out in is pretty good for a lot of things, for being devoid of a lot of the terrible things that are part of my reality, but refraining from using "girl" as a pejorative is really not one of them. (There's this whole angry post in my head titled "fuck you, I was an awesome teenaged girl".) I am so tired of seeing that in fic. The thing is that, all of those fics where it doesn't happen, that show an ideal world in that way - where that doesn't get said or thought - don't call the people that say or think those things on their bullshit. There are a lot of instances of -isms in our culture that are so ingrained that we don't recognise that they're there, that need to be pointed out so that we can stop committing them.

There's a hockey fic that I love to pieces for its inclusion of Patrick Kane casually calling out a team mate for using "girl" as an insult, and it's great. It's so great, because it does two things: it calls out that language as problematic and it shows a way of dealing with that situation in real life, which is amazing.

I believe in stories and I believe in fandom. I believe in the way that they can transmit ideas that can change the world. I believe in learning, and I think that the stories that we tell each other matter.

I don't think that every story should contain that kind of teachable moment. I don't think that every story needs to and I think that that would be boring and trying, frankly, but I think that there's a place for those stories and those moments. I think that identifying and addressing -isms is a necessary part of turning our escapist fantasy into reality.

I also think that escapist fantasy is an important part of turning our escapist fantasy into reality, that when we write stories about people being good to each other we can teach people to be good to each other.

I believe that stories matter. I believe that representation matters. I get excited about lesbian romcoms, happy polyamorous films, diverse casting, people recycling in fic, and I get upset about hockey fights, because the stories that we tell matter, because media matters, because they make up our culture, because you can't tell me that the hockey fight culture of the NHL wherein it is largely acceptable to get angry and punch someone is completely unrelated to the two guys on the bus talking casually about the domestic violence they'd committed, talking like it was a stupid thing that they'd done on the ice. You can not tell me that the stories that we tell do not shape our views and that those views do not shape our actions; I will not believe you.

I get frustrated when people include -isms in their fic that don't get called out because by not condemning them you accept and encourage them. A lot of Generation Kill fic is really terrible for this, and it's full of -isms because the source is, because reality is, because one of the goals of Generation Kill seems to have been a kind of unflinching realism, and one of it's theses is that the military/war was full of shit. So a lot of the fandom takes all of those slurs and shit as characterisation and serves them up in fic without really calling the characters on it, and while that's maybe a choice that makes sense for the series it maybe isn't one that makes sense for that romance you're writing. Maybe I'm weird but I don't believe that you need to put an entire group of people down to write characters shooting the shit or that people need to be racist or whatever.

I'm never going to buy characterisation as a justification for spreading hate and awfulness. ...and I feel like this post has maybe accidentally turned into "Dear Generation Kill Fandom: judging the fuck out of you." I like Generation Kill Fandom a lot, but I really wish parts of it were less accepting of casual -isms in speech, because I think it's harmful and I don't want to read unpleasant reality in my escapist fantasy; I don't want my escapist fantasy to contribute to the unpleasant reality.

I went to the cinema earlier this month and saw this artsy historical film with an unhappy ending and all of these gross tropes and -isms in it. I sat in front of someone who laughed at the evil people being kinky, laughed at the trans person, laughed at the fat person and I got progressively angrier, because, look, that shit isn't okay. It's not.

I look to fandom as a place where things are okay and there's a reason that I get pissed when I read fic wherein a character uses -ist language or expresses -ist opinions and doesn't get called on it within the story and there's an authors note warning for the -ism and explaining that it's in character and doesn't reflect the author's opinions, because- you know it's wrong, and you're doing it anyway? A note doesn't excuse you. It doesn't actually work that way.

For one thing, that author's note is usually vague rather than specific, so it doesn't really call the character out on their bullshit, but it does work to cover the author's ass. I mean, they warned for -ist language, so obviously they're aware of all the -ist language in their fic, right? (No.)

Sometimes that author's note is the equivalent of "No offense, but..." That thing you're doing, where you're including -isms in your fic without also condemning it in your fic? You're supporting those -isms with your fic. It's hurtful.

The film I went to watch wanted me to laugh at the trans person, wanted me to think that the kink they showed me was weird and gross; it was a fat-phobic, trans-phobic, kink-shaming, racist, sexist film. I'm alright with -isms in texts; I'm not alright with -ist texts.

I think art matters. I believe in the importance of stories. I believe that the stories we tell can change the way we see the world, that we can teach each other to make the world a better place. I believe that if we keep telling those stories they can come true.

That's my answer to [personal profile] sylvaine's question, I guess. When will reality finally be my escapist fantasy? Maybe, after we've told those stories enough, they'll become true. *shrugs* (I believe in stories.)
kiki_eng: Bones and Jim on the shuttle, text: "you had me at 'I may throw up on you'" (Star Trek 2009) (you had me at "I may throw up on you")
You should write a yuletide letter and it should include your character requests and optional details.

I know that some people who write a letter don't include them because it's something that they're putting together just for their assigned author, and they figure that they don't need to tell them the same stuff that they did in the sign-ups; their author already has that info. I think some people feel awkward making that information available to other people for whatever reason.

Please include that information; I will love you.

I love yuletide letters. I think they're awesome. I love reading what people write about the fandoms that they love a little or a lot and want fic in. I love reading people's general likes and dislikes. I love reading which characters it is that they want to see more of. I love reading those request details. I treat the yuletide letter collection post as a kind of joyous fannish art crawl. Having those details to read is great.

I haven't quite finished writing my own letter yet, but I did my sign-up today and then scrolled through the sign-up summary and proceeded to get progressively more excited. (Yuletide is awesome.) It was fantastic. I kept going yay, someone's asked for fic in *this* fandom, which eventually spiraled into these kind of wide excited eyes and going looking for a specific letter. I found the letter with that fandom on the spreadsheet, and it was great and kind of funny; I'm familiar with all of the fandoms they're requesting. (CLEARLY THEY ARE A PERSON OF EXCELLENT TASTE.) They like a lot of the things I like in fic. I would totally write a treat for this person if I didn't get matched to them (and my other fannish commitments don't eat me). This is the point at which I started making a frankly ridiculous face of woe at my computer because they didn't include all of their sign-up info in their letter.

So, please, if you haven't copied and pasted those details into your letter, do. It puts everything in one place for your assigned author, it means that people can write treats, and that there's a little bit more info out there about your rare fandom.

Please.
kiki_eng: Annie Monroe of The Like wearing sunglasses (bandom) (Annie wearing sunglasses)
There's this fic I've been slowly working on for the past six months or so- just occasionally pulling it out and adding in some detail. I'm still figuring out what story I want to tell. There's not even a proper draft yet - just notes, really - but it makes me really happy because I love the tropes in it. It's a story about growth and feelings and I'm not quite sure yet, but I like it. It's also, as of today, a story about vegetarianism.

That's something that I am: a vegetarian. I think this is the first time I've ever written about it, but I've been a vegetarian for longer than I've been in fandom, more than a decade. It's probably a big part of the reason I like bakery AUs better than chef AUs. I read a great fic last week that wasn't either of those things but was filled with all of these glorious descriptions of food, which I skimmed because none of the dishes were stuff that I'd eat. (I have very little interest in reading about someone cooking a turkey or whatever; that is really boring for me.)

Late last week I read a different fic, wherein confusion was expressed about what a vegan could eat for breakfast and I snorted. I'd had a piece of apple pie for breakfast that day, which, while not strict vegan, I hadn't used any eggs or milk to make. (It was delicious.)

Right now I've got two Teen Wolf stories open in my tabs and they both have a kind of vegetarian food is terrible; there should be meat line near the end. That's a coincidence and those lines feel pretty typical for Teen Wolf; real wolves eat a lot of meat and Sheriff Stilinski is seen despairing of his son's attempts to make him eat healthy on the show. I am sort of waiting for the fic where the werewolves express a preference for raw vegetables as well as raw meat, because that will amuse me.

The sort of recurring meme that vegetarian food is terrible I find less amusing, basically because there's this whole slew of anti-vegetarianism embedded in North American culture and I'm tired of it. I'm going to let you in on a little secret, though: when vegetarian food sucks it's for the same sorts of reasons that food with meat in it sometimes sucks. Often this reason is the cook doesn't really know what they're doing. I think that there are a lot of meat-eaters who aren't really incredible cooks and don't know how to compensate when they take the meat out of a dish and lose that fat and flavour; that's something that could contribute to that meme.

So essentially I hit a point today where there was a lot of glaring and grumbling and cursing and then I decided that I was going to write a fic where I described vegetarian food in loving detail because that is clearly the best sort of revenge, and, oh, isn't that character vegan; that is even better. I'm happy with this plan, basically - I like descriptions of food - I just really wish that there was less ridicule of vegetarianism in general but especially in fic; Fandom is my happy place.
kiki_eng: text: "i ate ALL your bees" (Black Books) ("I ate all your bees.")
I have this thing where I'm trying to write more fic and it seems to be going well.

I think I've finished the fic that I wrote in February as of this morning, which is pretty exciting. It's bandom, which- I've known that I was going to end up writing in that fandom for a while, but it's not a story I was expecting to write. It's femslash about Annie and Tennessee of The Like, which is only a little unexpected. The part where its kinky identity porn with roleplaying and is kind of porny has me blinking a lot. So I've got about 630 words that I need to reread with less confused blinking happening and then see if I can find a beta.

I also have a little under 800 words from March of a Bomb Girls AU that I need to find an ending for.

...and I want to write a fic for [personal profile] such_heights' female character trope fest. I just need to sort out what I am doing. I've got it narrowed down to two different prompts; I just need to sort things out. One of them is not realising they're dating, which I got really excited about and then backed away from warily, because it's sometimes a trope that I have issues with for the same reasons that shipping manifesto posts sometimes throw me.

It sometimes feels like there's this collective list of behaviours out there entitled Dating/Romance: This Is It and... I run into issues with that. It's not really a list that works for me. I run into it a lot with RPF shipping manifestos, where I'll be looking at photos and their commentary, (or reading fic wherein the ship doesn't realise they're dating) and then kind of just staring at it thinking things like, what, you don't have friends you've got that kind of personal space with, where your comfort zone isn't what it is for the rest of the world? or you've never licked or been licked by a friend? or what, you've never split food in a restaurant? etc.

I think I want to say that shipping manifestos and not realising they're dating fic sometimes feel prescriptive?
kiki_eng: GIF - Nikola Tesla of Sanctuary has eyes closed, text: "SCIENCE!", Tesla opens eyes, Text: "(with benefits)" (Nikola Tesla: Science!  With benefits!)
Note: Spoilers for the Twilight films, Dracula (1931), The Black Cat, The Raven (1935), The Wolf Man, Murders in the Rue Morgue, She-Wolf of London (1946), the third season of N.C.I.S., and Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

Twilight is something that I really enjoy, but I'm necessarily interacting with the text in a way that matches up with authorial intent. I'm a fan of the films, not the books - I haven't read them and don't intend to - and, I just wrote that I was a fan of Twilight. It will all be okay. The thing is that I am a fan of the Twilight films. I saw the last two films in theatre and really, genuinely enjoyed that viewing experience. There are a lot of things that I find problematic about Twilight, though. While I enjoy the films it is equally true that I find them horrifying.

Horror's kind of a key word there and how I watch Twilight has a lot in common with how I watch a good chunk of old horror films. Bela Lugosi, for anyone who doesn't know, was an actor. He was famous for playing Dracula and was typecast as a horror villain. He died in 1956 and one of the things about watching his films now, and other films of that same period and genre that he's known for, is that a lot of the things that I find terrible and horrifying about those films aren't things that were intended to be; they're the racism and sexism and so on that are present in those films.

Spoilers. )
kiki_eng: light purple lilacs with soft unfocused blue-purple background (lilacs)
So I feel really strange writing about reccing, but it's something I've been thinking about lately. I've been reading challenge and festival guidelines, which is what's sparking this post.

There's a new comm that I'm actually really excited about and interested to see how it develops and what its community looks like and I have all the excitement about this comm. It looks really, really cool. So, this is a community pimp and then some meta.

[community profile] fan_flashworks is an all-fandoms multimedia flashworks challenge community. "The goal of this challenge is to produce all kinds of new fanwork, to encourage play, practice and experimentation." The guidelines page is really long and I've only skimmed and read sections of it at this point, but you should check it out because it is awesome. No, seriously. It is.

I really dig the guidelines. This is, in fact, a guidelines rec. They have a mission statement and a really wonderful quote. It helps, a lot, that I really like both of these things; I like what this comm is setting out to be: a place to foster creativity and creators. It is all kinds of friendly to people who are new. The guidelines are well-organised, and as I was skimming over them I was thinking one of the mods totally hung out at [community profile] kradamadness, didn't they? [personal profile] sprat did and the guidelines are adapted from [personal profile] jerakeen's. It shows. A lot of the things that I really loved about [community profile] kradamadness and its guidelines are carried over, including the friendliness and emphasis on and encouragement of different types of fanworks.

One of the sections that I have read in full is the guidelines for rec sets and something that threw me was that "you can’t recommend a fanwork if it has already been recommended in that round."* I can see the logic behind that rule and I'm not suggesting that it be changed, but I also think that it's really, really interesting.

[ETA: Update: [community profile] fan_flashworks has removed this rule from their guidelines because they didn't feel it was in the spirit of their comm. ([personal profile] china_shop replied here in the comments.)]

I think that the rules and guidelines that get drawn up for challenges and communities and bigbangs, etc. are significant. I think that they work to set the tone of the community and that where there are breakdowns of different types of fanworks that those are really interesting. One of the things that I've seen meta about has been the role of artists in bigbangs, that a lot of these fests are very writer-centric in a way that's not friendly to artists.

There are opinions and biases at work when rules and guidelines get drawn up and, where there are breakdowns of different fanworks, I think those rules and guidelines say something about how different varieties of fanworks are perceived.

[community profile] fan_flashworks' rule* about not re-reccing things in the same round would never have occurred to me. I think it ties in with a specific approach to reccing. I think that there's something in there about recs serving to promote works and I think that that's a rule that ties more into the role of recs as promotion rather than recs as fanworks themselves. ...and this is where I start to feel awkward writing this, because it's personal.

Meta )

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