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[sticky post] Fic Master Post

All Star Trek stories are Kirk/McCoy unless otherwise stated.
All Avengers stories are Steve/Tony unless otherwise stated.

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Obligatory Statement on LJ

I've been crossposting between LJ and DW since the servers were being moved to Russia; I've also deactivated my auto-renew account for lj because I don't want them to have access to my financials. I don't think the recent LJ TOS statement will be legally enforceable in the US, but I also don't foresee any organizations going to the mattress about it either.  That said, if LJ ups and closes shop, all my stuff is at my DW account: caitri.dreamwidth.org. 

Good night and good luck, I guess.

Not a Book Review: The Fandom by Anna Day

I have a weakness for books about fandom. This one had some great ideas but problematic execution. Basically a bunch of not!HungerGames fans find themselves transported to the world of the not!HungerGames and the only way home, maybe, is for the heroine to live out the story, including the obligatory romantic triangle and the tragic death of the main character/her. Hijinks ensue.

Now, this is all hella formulaic for 350 pages, and then the last thirty throws in a wrench, because it's basically about how the collective power of fandom can rewrite texts. Not!PresidentSnow is aware of this and 1) was aware of the ickier parts of fandom that romanticized the baddies, so he was trying to push that aspect of fandom to basically become canon, and this somehow made 2) the actual author kill herself, so the death of the author (!) ended up empowering all the fan authors. Basically the last chapters take on fan theory and toxic fandom and I dig it, and wish that had been way more of the book.

Movie Review: Fahrenheit 451 (2018)

 We've gotten a month-long subscription to HBO so Scott can mainline Westworld, but the first thing we actually did was watch Fahrenheit 451 starring Michael B. Jordan.

This version of Bradbury's classic is very much updated for our present political moment; not only is media consumption and drug use state-sanctioned, but so is social media/live news feeds. Takes place in some near-future after a Second Civil War has left 8 million dead and people are happily in thrall to limited knowledge. Resistance leads to loss of citizenship and vulnerability to state violence. So far, so too too familiar.

Clarice is transformed from an ingenue to a non-citizen who is creeped on by Michael Shannon's Beatty and loved by Jordan's Montag. She and Montag read Dostoyevsky in her shitty apartment and fall in love, and she eventually leads him to the other rebels who are also the living books themselves.

This leads to a significant plot deviation, one that I'm not sure works. In addition to memorizing books with each person taking on the identity of a book, they have also been scanning them and *handwave* encoding them in a strand of DNA called OMNIS that they inject into a bird. The climax is the bird flying to freedom across picturesque vistas and joining a giant flock as they weave beautiful pictures into the sunset, because the DNA can also move to other animals and humanity's knowledge will be preserved in the natural world while also being sent to Canada.

Except that was when Scott pointed out that if people were escaping to Canada anyway, what happened to Canada's books??

That aside, I can't say enough good things about Jordan and Shannon's acting. They did an exceptionally convincing job of friends/father-son relationship where genuine love is at war with obedience to state and self. Also they were slashy af and I kinda want to go looking for fic. >_>


I AM SO HAPPY OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


On Excavating One's Own Past

So a few weeks ago my Mom called to say she was downsizing and if I Really Wanted My Grandfather's Furniture I needed to hurry up and come to GA. Well it turns out that with three weeks' notice a flight to GA and a three day (eighteen hours' each) drive back with a Uhaul was Just Not Gonna Happen, but luckily I found a managable moving company that dropped off a "Relocube" and then picked it up again, and it arrived yesterday.

In addition to the furniture, Mom had packed a bunch of truly random boxings of my belongings, many of which I had forgotten about. There was a box of miscellaneous papers that included my first attempt at a fanzine (two typed pages with "news" about the "new Star Trek movie" eg. Generations and the current arc of the X-Men comics, plus what passed for witticisms about my teachers and classmates--I note that one teacher "finally" learned to say my name right, but damn if I can remember how he was mispronouncing it. "Cathern" maybe?), a handwritten draft of a short story, a bunch of Star Trek magazines, and so on. Also a jewelry box that holds several shiny keychains and buttons (I was such a magpie), some pieces of kiddie jewelry I remember from when I was very little (a little ring with a cat-face on it, a glittery unicorn pendant), and several metal pins that were awards of some kind that I don't remember at all; one for "English," one for "Essay," and one for "Science."

Anyway, it made me muse on how much, in a way, I ~haven't~ changed since I was a young teenager. I still love Star Trek and X-Men and spend a lot of time (maybe even more??) writing and sharing fannish news and musings about them--except I have more friends to talk about them with, even if I've never met most of them! Serious study/academics still matters to me--maybe even more so. Like, hello doctoral study and so on. There's something about that bitty little "Essay" pin that's so homely and cute I kinda want to show it to my dissertation chair for, like, proxy academic momma pride or something absurd like that.

I was so lonely as a young teenager. I was also stubborn af, which...actually ended up working out pretty well for me. I wish I could send a letter back in time and tell bb!me something like, "I know you're lonely and everyone thinks you're weird, but in 24 years you're going to be someone that people take seriously, who gets published A LOT, and who has a lot of people Who Genuinely Give A Shit About You." Wouldn't that be great?


Various Things

1) Amazon is in talks to save Lucifer and my fingers are crossed SO HARD.

2) My Academic Sister and I sent off a book proposal a few weeks ago and we heard back--they are "delighted" with the project and want to see the mss when we have it. Huzzahs!!!

3) I got a chapter for a forthcoming collection back for only minor edits, which was an immense relief.

3b) I SO overbooked myself this summer with deadlines and such. I don't know how I always do that, except that I always do. (Pretty sure it's my inability to say "no." But still.)

4) After much leeriness, I bought Moira Greyland's book The Last Closet: The Dark Side of Avalon, an abuse survivor's memoir of her parents, SFF author Marion Zimmer Bradley and her husband Walter Breen. It's a harrowing read, and I'm glad to have it to read against Bradley's work; I still love her books, but I think art with problematic artists has to be in dialogue with one another for the reader/viewer. (Also it helps that the money goes to Greyland and not MZB's estate.) That said, while I am in sympathy with Greyland as a survivor, I think it's problematic af that she conflates all queer people with her abusers, and waaay too often she goes into anti-feminist and fat-phobic rhetoric when talking about her parents, SFF culture, paganism, and so on. But I also get that it comes from a profoundly fucked up place in her head as a survivor, so more than anything I just pity her.

Book History Thoughts

By way of a listserv thread that devolved from a CFP on ancient texts and into grumps about the field's current trend towards globalized contexts.

The core of the problem is that the field hasn't really evolved for decades because it was where all the white boys went to hide when the rest of us were talking about gender, race, class, colonialism, etc. It's telling that there's actually a deal of BH work on these topics that ISN'T published in BH journals because -ism cooties.

And so here we are in 2018, and like, last year TPTB decided to acknowledge that China was a place and women exist and so on. (Not Africa, though. Like the edges of the discourse are willing to go to India and Nepal but not Africa. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Sigh.)

(Also if I could go back in time I'd tell bb!me to go learn Chinese or Korean so I could do translations and read all kinds of neat things I...totally can't right now. Like, did you know that China had a flourish queer literature in the 18th c.? Me neither!! Want to read more? We can't. Because no one has bothered to actually do translations and publish them.)

But anyway so the field is stuck in this retro mire and needs to be dragged into the 21st century, which is really exciting, but the backlash is SO a thing. But bit by bit it shall change...

Lots of Thoughts on Lucifer

In the wake of the show's cancellation and because I was in dire need of a break, I rewatched/binged all three seasons over a couple of weeks. (Easy enough to do when two seasons are basically half seasons.) To my surprise, the episode arcs I found the weakest, especially in S2 and the first part of S3, are much less wobbly when binged than when watched one hour a week. At the same time, some of the weaker plot points/holes show up in starker relief, eg. Amenadiel's insistence at the beginning of S2 that a sample of Lucifer's blood can't be tested because it would be proof of the divine and thus damaging to humanity, and then in mid-S3 he goes to the doctor like nbd and gets a false chlamydia diagnosis. And I guess you could argue that by S3 Amenadiel is functionally human? No wings, etc. (But also...where does he live? Where do his clothes come from?) But still.

ANYWAY, what struck me is how the show's big theme is about acceptance, both of one's self and of others, and that a lot of the great character moments happen around this theme. For example, when Mazikeen shows Trixie her demon-face, and Maze's relief at Trixie's delighted and heartfelt "COOL!" (Also can we talk about how in S3 at some point Maze made Trixie a pink and glittery set of demon blades and was teaching her self-defense? New headcanon that at some point Trixie told Maze about how she got kidnapped and S1 and Maze was all "Imma teach you how to never get hurt ever again!" with srs demon mama-bear feels.) Lucifer's ambivalence around his role as Lord of Hell, but at the same time his sincere love of justice. Amenadiel's plot of letting go of the idea of being the perfect son. And so on.

Also, every character has their own arc, including the minor characters. Dan starts the show as a corrupt cop and a not great husband, and by the end everything he does is for justice; I also like that after the divorce, he and Chloe are sincerely good friends who look out for each other. Ella got the least development, but in one of the final "bonus" episodes that were meant for S4 we learn about her friendship with a ghost...who is really the Angel of Death...and her fear of being herself, eg. someone who does have this relationship with the supernatural. Her relief when she tells Chloe, who believes her and is the first one to do so, is a beautiful moment. Ditto when she goes into science geek mode to Lucifer and then apologizes to him, and he's like, "No no, keep going, tell me more," and it was JUST SO ADORABLE.

I also love the representation: Lucifer may be the main character, but over half the recurring cast were POC, several characters were bi like nbd, and all of the women are well-written, individual characters who are genuinely interesting.

I just love this show so much and still have hope that at some point it could get picked up somewhere. The CW would be ideal because then they could have a random crossover and Constantine could show up and it would just be great.*wistful sigh*


Wishing for a mental reset

I have just been in A Mood recently. Low key, though; I try really, really hard not to let out negative feelings into the ether, as I just don't think it's good mojo. But this also means I end up swallowing a lot, and I recognize that that isn't great either, but it's certainly the lesser of two evils.

But I kind of feel like I'm burned out? Which is frustrating, as I have Lots To Do. I took a few days off for real last week when my friend Kate was visiting; we had brunch and watched anime and so on. Scott's off on a business trip this week so I've had my own schedule, which is kind of nice--like yesterday I watched the bonus episodes of Lucifer on tv with my breakfast, because why not, and then I sat down to do reading for my papers. Similarly, I did some reading, the read the newspaper, took the dogs out, did more reading, willing my brain to make connections. But I also just feel tired and unmotivated.

Basically I need to get my energy back and I'm not sure how.

But also this could be health-related; last week I got a call from one of my doctors that my blood levels were unusually high and I should go see another doctor, and I got an appointment to do that next week. Ain't adulting great?

Anyhow, /vague whining. There's a little thunderstorm outside, the rain's falling and the grass is growing, and the air smells clean. So there's that, at least.

Re: the Lucifer finale

Way to close out the season's arc without giving much in the way of narrative closure. *sigh* I mean, it could have been worse, but...

I'm half thinking about attempting a fic, just because.
This is an immensely moving and thoughtful speech--my estimation of Boseman, already high, absolutely skyrocketed while listening to it. He talks about his education at Howard, activism, and his career. Some bits of it got me misty-eyed. And it's also charged with a determination and an optimism that we desperately need right now.

Lucifer cancelled

I am sulking. It's extra frustrating because the second half of this season has been SO GOOD.

And apparently there's 2 eps they filmed for S3 but put aside for S4...I wonder if they'll air those.


Made more annoying because there's basically only a tiny handful of American tv programs I watch anymore and that was one. (Others being Supernatural and Legends of Tomorrow for weeklies, and then the irregular shows like Into the Badlands, Outlander, and the Netflix Marvel series.) Like, WELP, this is why I watch Korean and Chinese tv, I guess.


Still processing Infinity War

...which I just described to someone as "like Kurosawa's Ran but with white and brown people."

I'll be okay. ... later.
...and at the end Scott yelled "DEUS EX MACHINAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!"

And I am still giggling hours later.


Do you ever have one of those days (weeks) where everything is ridiculous and just harder than it needs to be?

I've spent the morning going round and round with IT to work on the SFRD and it's driving me nuts. Like. I got the log-in resolved but now it's not letting me add or update records and I am THIS close to just giving up and going back to manuscript. *tableflip* BRING ME THE CURED AND TANNED SKIN OF A LAMB FETUS!


Fic Amnesty: SPN: Whetstones for the Mind

I came across this while looking through some old files. I'm reasonably sure I wrote it sometime in 2011. I have no idea where it was going to go, but the pieces that exist cohere fairly neatly, so I thought I would go ahead and share.

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Thoughts on Facebook's Mess...

...are mainly wondering if that means people will come back to dw? (I wish for lj, but obvs not with the servers in Russia and all that.) I like this as a forum for sharing information so much more...

I keep wanting to write a post about Real Life and such but I want to do it without being whiney, bitchy, and/or snarky. There's enough negativity in the world without me adding to it, you know?

Guest Conversations!

I was a guest speaker on several episodes of Sci-Fi Lab to talk with DJ and Harper about the history of fandom with my friend and colleague Karen Viars. Much fun was had!

Episode 6: Fandom, pt.1: The Beginning:

Episode 7: Fandom pt.2 The Wrath of Mod:

Episode 8: Fandom pt.3 Curative Robots vs. Transformative Pirates

Episode 9: Fandom pt.4 Follow the Bouncing Disclaimer:

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