Parallels 2016 Reveals!

Aug. 23rd, 2016 12:45 am[personal profile] gramarye1971
gramarye1971: mahjong tiles on a table, with the red dragon tile on top (Mahjong: Red Dragon)
For [community profile] parallelsfic this year, I received the excellent tabula rasa by [archiveofourown.org profile] makiyakinabe, a well-crafted pre-canon fic for the espionage anime Joker Game that focuses on how the D Agency selects (and weeds out) its spy candidates. It draws on material from the original novels, which I haven't yet had a chance to acquire, and it makes me want to rush right out and buy them. (Soon, soon, I will be in Japan and spending far too much money....) I want more people to watch the series so they can read this fic!

I, in turn, wrote fic for the cute-girls-play-epic-mahjong series 咲 -Saki-: Closed Hands, Open Hearts (also here at [personal profile] bookofgramarye) for [archiveofourown.org profile] maat_seshat. It's a mid-canon missing scene, set just after the main characters have won the Nagano prefectural tournament and are preparing for the inter-high mahjong championships, and it focuses on the mahjong club president Takei Hisa -- one of my most-beloved characters, who has lots of hidden layers that the series hasn't completely explored. So for all two of you I know who actually follow this series, I hope it's an enjoyable story.

Having written more fic in the past few weeks than I've written in almost two years, I'm dearly hoping to be able to finish one more fic before Yuletide starts. At least two WIPs look promising so far. Let's see how it goes from here.
dichroic: (oar asterisk)

(See previous post for context.)
These books are absolute time travel crack, but they move along so damned fast, apparently, even the author can’t keep up. Just a few of the continuity errors, behind a cut because spoilers are unavoidable though I’ll try not to be too specific.

Read the rest of this entry » )

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

Dreamwidth Meme

Aug. 22nd, 2016 01:23 pm[personal profile] gramarye1971
gramarye1971: a lone figure in silhouette against a blaze of white light (Fire on the Mountain)
Attempting to keep up an improved posting trend, with a bit of a question meme about Dreamwidth that I picked up from [personal profile] monksandbones.

1. Why did you sign up for Dreamwidth?

Following the general trend away from LiveJournal, particularly when [community profile] milliways_bar made the switch. So I reserved my own user name, imported my entries, and that was that. I didn't get on the bandwagon in time to get a seed account, but I've paid for an account for essentially the entire time that I've had one here.

More meme below cut! )
gramarye1971: Switzerland and Liechtenstein from Hetalia in traditional costume (Hetalia: Neutral Siblings)
It has been forever since I actually finished and posted Hetalia fic, or for that matter, any fic that wasn't written for an exchange. This one managed to hijack my brain thoroughly enough to go from concept to research to completion in less than a fortnight...which, considering my recent writing track record, is a welcome relief. Here's hoping I can keep it up.


Title: The (Wrong) Color of Money
Fandom: Hetalia
Rating: G
Summary: America has a little cash problem. Switzerland can only help so much.
Notes: Technically, this story takes place a few years earlier than the present day, since printing technologies have improved a bit since then...but it's still topical, even now. (Also on AO3.)

The (Wrong) Color of Money )
dichroic: (oar asterisk)

I really like The Chronicles of St. Mary’s series by Jodi Taylor; the first book was a bit awkward, as first books so often are, but they’ve smoothed out. There are faults, of course – a ton of minor characters not adequately fleshed out (one reason for this post), way too much plot crammed into the first couple of books especially (another reason), but they’re just way too much fun not to read. (The audiobooks, read by Zara Ramm, are also excellent, except for the minor problem that they keep making me laugh out loud while I’m erging. ) The series is up to 7 books now, and is desperately in need of a wiki – in particular, I can’t keep track of the historian corps in each book. Unfortunately there doesn’t seem to be one; I’ve found a few sites listing the books and stories in internal chronological order, but that’s about it. So, for my own reference, and for the use of anyone who wants to set up a wiki someday (warning, probably spoilers below). Character lists are not complete I’ve just tried to include the ones who actually have personalities.

The Very First Damned Thing
Short story. Prequel.
People: Introduces Dr. Bairstow, Mr. Strong, Major Guthrie, Mrs. Mack, Dr. Rapson, Dr. Dowson, Mrs. Cleo Partridge, Dr. Helen Foster, Markham, Thirsk Chancellor Evelyn Chalfont, Leon Farrell, and Max. (These characters are in every book, so don’t need to be listed again.)
Sites / Events Visited: Battle of Waterloo.

Just One Damned Thing After Another
Novel 1.
People:
Historian Corps in this book: Kalinda Black, Tim Peterson, Lower, Baverstock plus recruits Max, Grant, Davey Sussman, Nagley, Jordan, Rutherford, Stevens, plus Pathfinders (next set of recruits) Van Owens, Schiller, Clarke.
Other important characters introduced: Mrs. Enderby (head of Wardrobe), Big Dave Murdoch,’Weasel’ Whissell and Evans (Security), Dieter (Technical), Izzy Barclay and Polly Perkins (IT), Nurse Hunter, Sybil de Winter (Max’s teacher and occasional recruiter for St. Mary’s), Jamie Cameron (R&D), Clive Ronan
Sites / Events Visited: the building of Westminster Abbey, the Somme in WWI, Cretaceous Era, Library of Alexandria

When a Child is Born
Short story. Peterson, Guthrie, Markham and Max try to visit London in 1066.

A Symphony of Echoes

Novel 2
Historian Corps in this book: Kalinda Black, Tim Peterson, Max, Schiller, Van Owen, Clerk (same as Clarke from Book 1?), Pathfinders Prentiss, Hopwood, Dewar
Other important characters introduced: David Sands, Rosie Lee, Evans (different one), Pinkie, Knox, Katie Carr, Rosie Lee
Sites / Events Visited: Jack the Ripper’s London; a future St. Mary’s; assassination of Thomas a Becket; Hanging Gardens of “Babylon”; Edinburgh and the court of Mary, Queen of Scots;

A Second Chance
Novel 3
Historian Corps in this book: Tim Peterson, Miss Van Owen, Miss Schiller, Mr. Clerk, Miss Prentiss, Mr. Roberts, Miss Morgan, Kalinda Black (visiting from Thirsk)
Other important characters introduced: Professor Penrose, retiring from Thirsk, Joe Nelson
Sites / Events Visited: Isaac Newton at Cambridge, Troy, the Gates of Grief, Cretaceous, Battle of Agincourt

Roman Holiday
Short story. Max, Peterson, Van Owen, Guthrie and Markham visit Caesar and Cleopatra.

A Trail Through Time

Novel 4
Historian Corps in this book: Tim Peterson, Miss Van Owen, Miss Schiller, Mr. Clerk, Miss Prentiss, Mr. Roberts, David Sands
Other important characters introduced: Officer Ellis
Sites / Events Visited: the Great Frost Fair (London 1683); Thebes in ancient Egypt, eruption of Pompeii, the Tabard Inn in 14th-century London; finishing with the Battle of St. Mary’s.

Christmas Present
Short story. Max, Peterson and Markham visited Boudicca’s Colchester in AD60

No Time Like the Past
Novel 5
Historian Corps in this book: Tim Peterson, Miss Van Owen, Miss Schiller, Mr. Clerk, Miss Prentiss, Mr. Roberts, David Sands,
Other important characters introduced: Officer Ellis, Bashford (History), Elspeth Grey (History), Randall (Security), Miss Shaw (PA to Training Officer)
Sites / Events Visited: St. Mary’s during the English Civil War; the Crystal Palace Exhibition; Great Fire of London; Florence, Bonfire of the Vanities, Battle of Thermopylae

Ships and Stings and Wedding Rings
Short story. Max, Peterson and Markham in Ancient Egypt.

What Could Possibly Go Wrong?
Novel 6
Historian Corps in this book: Tim Peterson, Mr. Clerk, Miss Prentiss, Mr. Bashford, Miss Grey, Mr. Roberts, David Sands. Trainees: Atherton, Hoyle, Lingoss, North, Sykes.
Other important characters introduced: the trainees
Sites / Events Visited: Valley of the Kings, end of 18th dynasty; Pleistocene / Ice Age; Herodotus; Joan of Arc’s execution, opening of the Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol, 1864; Battle of Bosworth

Lies, Damned Lies, and History
Novel 7.
Historian Corps in this book: Tim Peterson, Mr. Clerk, Miss Prentiss, Mr. Bashford, Miss Grey, Mr. Roberts, David Sands. Pathfinders: Atherton, North, Sykes.
Other important characters introduced: Halcombe, Dottle, Matthew Farrell
Sites / Events Visited: Coronation of George IV; Wales, 6th century; presentation of Edward II as first Prince of Wales; King John; early Stonehenge circa 2300 BC, unidentified location

The Great St. Mary’s Day Out
Short Story. Dr Bairstow and most of the major characters visit a showing of Hamlet, complete with Sharespeare as the Ghost.

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

Gratitudes

Aug. 19th, 2016 05:08 pm[personal profile] kass
kass: The Blues Brothers eat. (blues brothers (eating))
1. For lunch, a fresh tomato, sliced, with a lashing of pepper and some smoked sriracha sea salt. It really is August. Hallelujah.

2. Tonight there will be fresh corn! (See above, re: August.)

3. Also there will be a small steak, now marinating in worcestershire and soy. I haven't cooked beef since moving here; it's a bit of a splurge, but it was on sale, and will be tasty. (Yep, I'm breaking out the fancy china.)

4. I just hung my quartet of Jerusalem market photographs in my breakfast nook, and they are bright and cheery and colorful and they make me smile.

5. Shabbat is coming, huzzah!

How are y'all?
gramarye1971: Paris Orly Airport (ORLY?)
I'm flying on JAL to Tokyo at the end of next month, and even though I'm not flying in the fancy business class I still like to snoop around the online menus and see what's on offer. The different Euro-don rice bowls that JAL was offering on flights to Europe delighted me, but then I discovered that summertime BOS-NRT flights have an even better local donburi of their own: Bos-don, or rice topped with Maine lobster and Boston lettuce in a sesame-flavored sauce.

I mean, I should not be as surprised as I am, because Japan, but really. Bos-don.

(I don't know that they'll still be serving it by the end of September, but I'm sure I will be giggling at the thought that I might be flying with Bos-don on board.)

narrative dreaming

Aug. 15th, 2016 02:26 pm[personal profile] dichroic
dichroic: (oar asterisk)

I had the coolest dream last night – something about being on a spaceship that was mostly built by the Mayans. There were some issues with the oxygen system – we’d thought we wouldn’t need any O2 above 900 miles, then it turned out we did, so suddenly I couldn’t breathe and thout we were all going to die – but then the backup system kicked in. It had only been intended for a few people who for some reason had different breathing requirements than the rest of us, but it was somehow self-contained and could handle any number of people. It provided less air than we were used to but plenty to function well. (This may have something to do with me recently spending a few days in Quito, which is at an elevation of 9250’/2820m.)

Later on, I went to explore the ship farther and walked into a big room with a sign proclaiming “GET ALL YOUR SPACE QUESTIONS ANSWERED – FROM MOVIES, BOOKS, ANYTHING”. There were lots of people all around the room, at screens or talking to computers.

The whole thing seemed like a much more cohesive story at the time than my patchy memories are conveying now, I do like it when I get narrative dreams – it’s like getting to keep reading even while I’m asleep. (Aside from the time I had a nightmare involving cryogenics. I don’t ever need to do that one again. The problem was, Ted went under first, To be woken up at some far future time, and only then did I learn that the procedure ended up killing about 75% of the people who went through it. So I had to choose between losing him or taking that risk myself. Blech.)

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

Gratitudes

Aug. 15th, 2016 04:59 pm[personal profile] kass
kass: A glass of iced coffee with milk. (coffee)
1. Iced coffee. Yes, even at 5 in the afternoon.

2. Four new 8 x 10 photo prints of Machaneh Yehudah that will soon be hanging in a big frame in my kitchen, brightening it up with color and memory.

3. Speaking of Jerusalem, I finished Laurie King's O, Jerusalem and totally enjoyed it omg.

4. Still basking in the sweetness of having seen a lot of friends over Vividcon weekend.

5. Tomorrow I will have a piano!

How are y'all?

Yuletide prep

Aug. 15th, 2016 09:46 am[personal profile] gramarye1971
gramarye1971: a meteor-sized plum pudding slamming into Earth, from a cover of The Economist (Pudding)
Posting a note to myself regarding the Yuletide signups: prepare everything before leaving for Japan at the end of September.

Current nomination plans are Han Nyeohaksaengeui Ilgi (The Schoolgirl's Diary), the 2007 North Korean coming-of-age film I've been requesting for the past few years; Senkou no Night Raid (Night Raid 1931), the pre-World War II superpowered spy anime; and probably one other rare anime or manga depending on how the other nominations look. Maybe this year will be the year for Master Keaton, since the English translation of the manga is more than halfway complete!

Vividcon 2016

Aug. 14th, 2016 05:00 pm[personal profile] kass
kass: "let love be your engine," image of Kaylee and of Serenity (let love be your engine)
So hey, I went to Vividcon and it was awesome! Again! :-)

Below the cut -- 3700 words of con report. Notes from panels, links to favorite vids, natterings about seeing friends and so on.

My Vividcon 2016 )

(no subject)

Aug. 14th, 2016 03:00 am[personal profile] gramarye1971
gramarye1971: a lone figure in silhouette against a blaze of white light (Default)
Having at last had a chance to see Ghostbusters on Friday afternoon, I posted the following on Twitter: So I finally saw Ghostbusters, and now I want all the fic about Patty and her personal network of local historians and museum staff. She gets full access to their resources and invites to special events. They keep the GB on speed dial for troubleshooting purposes. Win-win.

[personal profile] skygiants promptly replied: I want you to write yourself a self-insert fic about this.

Now, I don't consider myself to be a true local historian, but when it comes to Cold War and nuclear history, there's one very local tale that immediately came to mind. So here's the hastily written, blatant author self-insert flashfic that spilled forth this afternoon and evening, totally not meant to be taken seriously by anyone, including the author.

Local Knowledge )

And now that I've stayed up far too late finishing this, it's time for bed. [personal profile] skygiants, I hope this fits the bill.
kass: The Blues Brothers eat. (blues brothers (eating))
Because if I don't write it down I'll forget...notes from an extraordinary pre-Vividcon Thursday night dinner with [personal profile] heresluck.

seven courses of AMAZING at Topolobampo )
okrablossom: (scientific method)
Alison Hawthorne Deming says,


And writing poetry is an act of dissent in at least three ways: economically, because a poet labors to make a thing which will never be worth money; temporally, because the poem is an argument with the corrosive passage of time; and politically, because in an age of aggregate data, it insists on the passionate importance of the individual.

+ / -

Aug. 11th, 2016 10:50 am[personal profile] kass
kass: Made by laurashapiro (nothing wrong with your vid)
- the alarm went off at 4:45
- it is still dark at that hour at this season where I live
+ [personal profile] kouredios drove us to the airport
+ travel went smoothly
+ on the plane I read the new [profile] seanan_mcguire short story and more of O, Jerusalem, the Laurie R. King novel (featuring Sherlock Holmes and Mary Russell) set in early 20th-century Palestine, which is totally a "chocolate in my peanut butter" kind of thing
+ we have arrived at the Vividcon hotel
- our room isn't ready (which I knew it wouldn't be)
+ but there is wifi, and also free-flowing coffee, huzzah

Anyway. Hi! We have landed! \o/

Los Galapagos!!

Aug. 10th, 2016 08:41 pm[personal profile] dichroic
dichroic: (oar asterisk)

I finally got our Galapagos trip blogged, and it took only 5 posts to do it. You can click each link below directly or just start with the first (or last) and page through.

Quito

About the ship, trip and people

Photo-intensive posts:
Tortoises, sea lions and scenery
Birds (and also more birds) (and there were even some more kids we didn’t get photos of – ask me if you want to know which of these are which)
Iguanas, lizards, and a few other things

Mirrored from Dichroic Reflections.

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