beatrice_otter: Ah, arrogance and stupidity all in the same package.  How efficient of you! (Arrogance and Stupidity)
PM I just received from the Pit of Voles*:

I was wondering if you would like to write a Beauty And The Beast fic request for me to celebrate the upcoming the live action Disney film being released in movie theaters next month.
Wow.  Going up to a perfect stranger and asking them to write your fic prompt.  And just a bare request.  From someone who hasn't even bothered to review or comment on the one fic in that fandom I've written.  Wouldn't you know it, it was a guy?


*fanfiction.net, for all you baby!fen out there, so named because of the relatively low ratio of good fic to badly-written fic, and the high number of jerks who comment.  While I don't read there unless a fic is specifically recced, because there's so much crap to wade through and very little way to narrow it down, I am a big believer in redundancy.  I want all my fic in as many places as possible so that if one archive goes down, it isn't lost--I've had too many favorite stories go the way of the dodo bird for that very reason.
beatrice_otter: Jedi fighting against a blue background (blue Jedi)
Mostly what I need is someone to tell me if everyone is in character and if it hangs together on a meta level.
beatrice_otter: Dali's Christ of St. John of the Cross (St. John of the Cross)
For those of you who don't know, The Shack is a best-selling book about Christian faith, and particularly how we deal with loss and grief, and lots of Christians love it and some Christians hate it and it just got made into a movie, and I wanted to know if I should take my youth group to see it.  Having never read the book, I asked my fellow pastors in an online forum.  Most said it was great, not perfect but with some really great things to discuss, and one was vehement that it was a horrible, destructive, and misleading theology and view of God.  So I asked him why he thought that, since everyone else thought it was great.  His key arguments:
  1. It uses feminine imagery for God, which contradicts Scripture.
  2. God is only loved in the book, never feared, and in Scripture he is always feared.
But, uh, dude,
  1. The Bible uses feminine imagery for God in several places, and particularly maternal--Jesus describes himself as "a mother hen" who wants to gather his chicks into his wings, in the Hebrew Scriptures God describes Godself as a nursing mother a couple of times ... yeah, God-as-woman is a small part of Scripture but it's woven throughout.  Denying the maternal and feminine aspects of God are the thing that truly contradicts Scripture.
  2. The greatest commandment as given by Jesus is to LOVE the Lord your God.  Not fear, LOVE.  And you know what?  He got that from the Hebrew Scriptures, he's quoting there.  So while the idea of fearing God is in Scripture, so is the idea of loving God.  Also, Biblical ideas of what it means to "fear" God are not what we talk about when we talk about fear.  It's a sort of awe-filled respect and awareness of vulnerability that we don't really get in English.
So his two major arguments against it are COMPLETELY bogus.  And wrong.  And, actually, make me more inclined to take the kids to see it, not less.  He notes other problems that (if he's right about them) are definitely issues, but ones that I think we would benefit from discussing, so again, a reason to take them to see it, not to avoid it.
beatrice_otter: WWII soldier holding a mug with the caption "How about a nice cup of RESEARCH?" (Research)
Lost recordings made just after World War II of Holocaust survivors singing songs have been rediscovered at the University of Akron. These recordings were part of a project by Dr. David Boder, a Latvian Jewish psychologist who had settled in the United States in the 1920s and quickly made a name for himself in academia and as a clinician. He became an American citizen in 1932, but he traveled regularly to Europe and kept in touch with his family until the war disrupted movement and communications.

In May of 1945, just days after the Allies accepted Germany’s unconditional surrender, Boder got the idea to interview displaced persons, Holocaust survivors, victims of the dislocations and horrors of World War II. His aim was first to get a record of victims’ experiences while it was all still painfully fresh.
Some of the recordings were lost, some they just didn't have a way to listen to anymore, but they are now all safely digitized.  You can read more here.
beatrice_otter: Me in red--face not shown (Default)
Want to bug your Congresscritters in person?  Here's a handy list of where they'll be in the next year!  Town Halls, office hours, etc.
beatrice_otter: Me in red--face not shown (Default)
From [personal profile] rydra_wong:

Hope not Hate have an urgent call for funds to try to stop Paul Nuttall of UKIP from winning the Stoke by-election (it's a real danger, would energize them a lot, and HnH's take is that Nuttall is even more right wing than Farage):

https://donate.hopenothate.org.uk/page/contribute/help-expose-nuttall

They're aiming for £5000; from the fund-raising e-mail:

The £5,000 will go towards:

15,000 ‘Nuttall Fraudster’ leaflets
5,000 letters which will be hand-delivered to key women voters in Stoke Central
A 8pp tabloid newspaper for Leigh

(Leigh is another likely upcoming by-election.)

From what I know, HnH have a very solid track record of effective campaigning against UKIP, which is one reason why Farage hates them so much.

(The libel suit is still in progress, btw.)


Good place to donate to stop fascist hate-mongers in the UK
beatrice_otter: Cover of Janelle Monae's Archandroid album (Janelle Monae)
You can find the whole list of vids on DW or the website.  Here are my faves.

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
Behind Blue Eyes.  HAL just wants to be loved.  Creeeeeeepy.

Annie (2014)
Kids in America.   It's a hard-knock life.

Attack the Block
Invincible.  'When they come to destroy the Earth, they'll have to go through you first.'  I've already watched this one several times.

Carrie Fisher RPF
A Better Son/Daughter.  You'll be honest, you'll be brave.  WOW.  This one REALLY packs a punch.

Dark City (1998)
Sunny Days (Theme to "Sesame Street").  Can anyone tell me how to get to Shell Beach?  Really creepy and effective mismatch of song and movie.

A Dorothy L. Sayers Mystery
Easy on the Eyes.  Lord Peter is fascinated by many things about Harriet Vane.

The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot
Pick Yourself Up.  Getting the band (of Doctors) back together.

Luke Cage
Battle Cry.  Misty, Claire, Luke: Truth, Healing, Freedom.  PERFECT character vid.

A New Day.  The highs and lows of Mariah Dillard

Matilda
Jack the Giant Killer.  The world is big, she's little, but that doesn't mean there's nothing she can do about it.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream (BBC, 2016)
Never Look Away. I want the storm inside you awoken now.  BTW, anyone know how to get ahold of the source for this one?  It looks really cool!

Pitch/Baseball history
Anything Goes.  America's national pastime, from Jackie to Ginny.

Pitch
The Greatest.  The three most important words are, "Endure, endure, endure."

Rivers of London
An Introduction.  The adventures of Police Constable (/apprentice wizard) Peter Grant.  I spent the entire time watching this vid going "this all fits together too well to be a fan thing, there HAS to have been a RoL miniseries or something that I missed, right? Right?"  But no, this vidder is just that good.

Victor/Victoria
Objectified.  I want to be objectified.
beatrice_otter: Me in red--face not shown (Default)
This is an AMAZING Carrie Fisher vid that was made for Festivids.  You have to watch it, and then go watch the rest of them.




beatrice_otter: Cameron Mitchell, bored with a stack of files (Schoolwork)
Over the last couple of days, I've been going through my WIPs to figure out what I can finish and get posted and what will take more work.  One fic just required another scene added, which was done, and now it's off at the betas.  But the strange thing is, one of the fics was done.  I mean, it could use a beta pass, but like it was a complete story (not just ending at a logical place but at the place I had intended to end it).  Why the heck didn't it get sent off to the beta when I finished it?  IDK.  Hopefully they will both get published in the next few days.
beatrice_otter: I always have been what I chose (Choice)

Title: Hand in Glove
Fandom: Mars Help Wanted posters (2009)
Written by: [personal profile] beatrice_otter 
Word count: 3554
Written for: [personal profile] lady_ragnell in [community profile] yuletide 2016
Summary: This, Javier Navarro thought in disgust as he stared up at the tower he was supposed to fix, was not exactly the heroic and exciting thing he had imagined when he’d seen the NASA recruiting posters and, on a whim, submitted an application.

At AO3


Heroic recruiting poster of a space-suited technician fixing a satellite dish on Mars

 

This, Javier Navarro thought in disgust as he stared up at the tower he was supposed to fix, was not exactly the heroic and exciting thing he had imagined when he’d seen the NASA recruiting posters and, on a whim, submitted an application. )

 

beatrice_otter: Elizabeth Bennet reads (Reading)
Title: From Castle to Palace
Fandom: Beauty and the Beast (1991)
Author: [personal profile] beatrice_otter 
Rating: Gen
Length: 17,645 words
Betaed By: [personal profile] arithanas 
Written for: [personal profile] eida in [community profile] yuletide 2016
Summary: The curse is broken. Belle and her Beast would be happy to just live quietly together in the curse-free castle. Unfortunately, the rest of France has other ideas …

AN: This supposedly takes place in France, but Adam is not a very French name. So, since I don’t know that that name is ever used in the animated movie (and if so, it is only very briefly), I am taking the liberty of changing his name in this story to Louis.

AN2: Also, as I was reading up on the French court of the Ancien Régime, I came across a LOVELY way to slip the Beast into actualfax French Royal Family and French history. This then sparked an idea that ate my brain. The historical details and personalities are as accurate as Wikipedia would let me get.

At AO3


The rest of that day was chaos. )
beatrice_otter: Ginger Rogers--Dancing! (Dancing!)
Title: The Music of the Spheres
Fandom: Fantasia (1940)
Author: [personal profile] beatrice_otter 
Rating: Gen
Length: 1662 words
Betaed By: [personal profile] yeomanrand 
Written for: [archiveofourown.org profile] dussek in [community profile] yuletide 2016
Summary: This is the music that underscores all.

At AO3


It begins with a bassoon. )
beatrice_otter: Sarah Connor--made for me, not shareable (Sarah Connor)
I have been away from my laptop for almost a month now, and didn't want to try posting fic from a tablet, which is why I haven't posted my Yuletide fic here on my DW yet.

Title:
On the Nature of Miracles
Fandom: Chalion Saga
Author: [personal profile] beatrice_otter 
Rating: Gen
Length: 1504 words
Betaed By: [personal profile] filkferengi and Markus Baur
Written for: [personal profile] keerawa in [community profile] yuletide 2016
Summary: Even the Mother's miracles of healing have limits.

At AO3


But why can't you? )
beatrice_otter: Me in red--face not shown (Default)
DW has been my primary home for years.  I am available on DW, AO3, and Tumblr, and as of now not on LJ any more.  My LJ will be deleted in a week.
beatrice_otter: Vader and Leia (Vader and Leia)
I love a good Star Wars time-travel AU, but I do sigh sometimes about how repetitive they are.  (This is one of the reasons I started Past Lives.)  I mean, with AAAALLLL  the characters there are in Star Wars, why is it only Obi-Wan and Anakin who end up going back in time, with the occasional time-traveling Luke thrown in?  Why not any others?  Why not Dooku, out for revenge against Palpatine for having him killed?  Why not Leia?  Or Lando and Han?  Or Yoda?

I was contemplating this, after Rogue One, and I thought, WHY NOT BAIL?

Bail knows what the Death Star is, and the Death Star didn't shoot immediately after it came out of hyperspace.  It came out and hung there, while Leia was brought from the detention block, while Tarkin tried (and failed) to manipulate her.

Alderaani Space Control called the palace to tell them that something HUGE--the size of a small moon--had just appeared in the skies over the planet.  It wasn't quite visible from the palace yet, but would be coming around the curve of the planet in roughly fifteen minutes.

Bail asked Breha to give the order to evacuate.  (Of course she knew of the Death Star, what it was and what it could do.  She was his Queen and his wife, and he had no secrets from her.  In the Rebellion as in all things, he was her eyes and ears and hands.)  "No," she said.  "There isn't time.  If they mean to shoot, they'll do it immediately, and no one will get out alive.  But they may not mean to destroy us.  They may be testing us.  If they see we evacuate, they'll know that we know what that thing is--and they'll shoot.  But if we do nothing, we may be able to bluff them."

By the time the Death Star crested the horizon, the great dish on the side was beginning to glow.  Queen Breha gave the evacuation order, hoping at least someone would make it out, but it was too late for anyone in the palace, and they both knew it.  They held each other and waited to become one with the Force.

Bail woke up in a familiar office on Coruscant.  This was unexpected.  The Alderaani didn't believe in heaven or hell or any kind of afterlife except the Force, and even if they did, his old Senatorial office would have been neither.  He was sitting at his desk staring out at the Coruscant skyline.  Someone clears their throat and asks for Senator Antilles.  He almost doesn't respond; it's been three decades since his name was Antilles.  And he's too confused, wondering what the hell has happened and where Breha is.

But the person asks again, and he turns.  It's his old aide, who resigned in protest after the Empire was declared, who joined a peaceful protest march and was gunned down in the street.  Zie is trying to tell him that the Trade Federation has just begun a "peaceful" blockade of Naboo in the Chommell Sector.

Bail stares.  Maybe this is Hell, if he's going to have to relive all of this.  Maybe he's crazy.

His aide notices and asks if he's all right.

No.  He is not all right.

She calls for a med droid; there's always several on call in the Senate building.  It comes and examines him and pronounces him perfectly fine except for elevated stress levels.  (He looks in a mirror and is startled to see how young he looks.)

The examination gives him time to think.  If he is hallucinating, or in some kind of hell, nothing he does matters.  If this is some sort of Imperial trick, he has no clue what they might hope to get out of this.  If they could convince him it was later, during the early Imperial days, they might be able to get him to give up some of the details of the Alliance to Restore the Republic, but now?  A decade before the beginning of the Clone Wars?  But if he has somehow gone back in time, can he change things?

He has to try.  The question is, how?  Palpatine-the-Sith is definitely something for the Jedi to deal with, but at this point he has no contacts in the Jedi, and (unless you have a personal friend in the Order) official contact between the Senate and the Jedi is closely monitored both officially and by your fellow senators who want to make sure you don't persuade the Jedi to intervene on your side in any particular matter.  Palpatine would be sure to hear of it.

But Palpatine isn't the Chancellor yet.  And if Bail can block him, even if only temporarily, he'll have some breathing room to work.

Last time around, Bail and three-quarters of the Senate had been caught completely off-guard by the blockade and then invasion of Naboo.  It had seemed to come out of nowhere, unimaginable before it happened. The vote of no-confidence had been predicted, but not that the new election would go to a then-nobody like Palpatine.

This time around, Bail knows it's coming.  This time around, Bail can be prepared.  This time around, Bail knows who his supporters are and who Palpatine's supporters are, and where all the bodies will be buried and the weak points will be found.  This time around, Bail knows what's at stake, and is willing to get his hands dirty in ways he never would have the first time around.

Bail calls his staff in, and they have a council of war.  They start arranging meetings, and a whisper campain among the other aides.

To some people, Bail commiserates about how awful the situation is and don't they feel scared it could happen to them, and gee, Palpatine's negotiations with the Trade Federation went particularly badly--he's not a very good politician, is he?

To some people, Bail points out that if the Trade Federation is willing to trample a thousand generations of history like this, who knows what they'll do?  It's out of character for them, and that's bad for business.  Do you really want to be their ally?

(For some people, Bail arranges for accidents or poisonings for the day of, so that they will not be present to influence their hangers-on.  Nothing fatal--that would raise too many red flags.  But food poisoning and slight colds ... those can easily pass unnoticed.  The first time around, Bail would have been apalled at the very idea, and had no clue how to arrange it.  Now ... now Bail has done worse things at lesser need, and knows exactly how to arrange it, even though it is an extra hassle to have to do it without his staff knowing.)

And it works.  Despite a much stronger showing than everyone except Bail and Palpatine expected, Palpatine falls just short of the number needed to be elected.  Bail wins.  And the day after he is installed, Bail invites the Jedi Council to meet him, sweeps his office for bugs, and tells them the shape of what he lived through.  Most are incredulous.  Mace Windu just stares at him and says, "So that's what's been happening recently.  I have rarely seen a shatterpoint so large--and never one I didn't see until after the fact."

The Jedi deal with Palpatine.  Bail starts to slowly, methodically, reform the loopholes and corruptions that Palpatine had used to such effect.  There is no Clone War.

He has only two regrets.  The Queen of Alderaan could never marry a man who outranked her.  Breha marrries someone else.  And his precious Leia has no need of anyone to adopt her.

beatrice_otter: Me in red--face not shown (Default)
I will be in Greece and Turkey for the next couple weeks.  if you post fic or interesting meta--or see something great to rec--I would appreciate if you would link me, because I won't have much time for fandom.
beatrice_otter: Yuletide (Yuletide)
Title: Hand In Glove
Fandom: NASA Mars Mission posters
Word Count: 3554
Summary: This, Javier Navarro thought in disgust as he stared up at the tower he was supposed to fix, was not exactly the heroic and exciting thing he had imagined when he’d seen the NASA recruiting posters and, on a whim, submitted an application.
Read more... )

Title: From Castle to Palace
Fandom: Beauty and the Beast/French History RPF
Word Count: 17,602
Summary: The curse is broken. Belle and her Beast would be happy to just live quietly together in the curse-free castle. Unfortunately, the rest of France has other ideas …
Read more... )

Title: The Music of the Spheres
Fandom: Fantasia (1940)
Word Count: 1662
Summary: This is the music that underscores all.
Read more... ) had such a great prompt.  It's really meta, and it takes three of the pieces--The Rite of Spring (the Evolution one), The Sorcerer's Apprentice, and Night on Bald Mountain--and examines the relationship between the music and the story.  I really like it, although it is the least popular of all my [livejournal.com profile] yuletide fics.

Title: On the Nature of Miracles
Fandom: Chalionverse/World of the Five Gods
Word Count: 1475
Summary: Even the Mother's miracles of healing have limits

Meta about the fic )

beatrice_otter: Yuletide (Yuletide)
I received a Cat Pictures Please fic.  Catnip: You're Welcome, which is a sweet story.  I also wrote four stories this year: my assignment, a pinch-hit, and two treats.  See if you can guess which ones they are!

Here are my recs:

84 fics in a variety of fandoms )
beatrice_otter: Woman in age-of-sail uniform (Lieutenant Bennet)
This year, for Yuletide, there were a couple of post-series stories (now that the series is complete) in which Tharkay and Lawrence get together as a couple.  And I found, reading them, that after the last book I don't ship them anymore.

It's not that I don't think they'd work very well together, and it's certainly not that I don't think they have chemistry.  But after being disappointed when they both swore off getting married, I felt I had to figure out why.  After some rumination, I discarded the idea that reading so many Regency romances has primed me to be disappointed if there's no marriage (because if that were the case, it wouldn't be only popping up now).  Here's what I came up with.

1) Temeraire.  If Lawrence never marries, given his deep attention to the Proper Way of Doing Things, he probably won't ever have kids.  And I know that Temeraire, given his work for the emancipation of dragons, doesn't need another captain, in the way British dragons to this point have been passed down in the family, but I still don't want him to be lonely, you know?  There's this half-formed picture in my head of Temeraire surrounded by Lawrence's children and grandchildren, still hoarding them as "his" people, and having that family support even after Lawrence is dead and gone.

2) Tharkay.  Tharkay now has an estate.  Tharkay has now been wedged into the xenophobic snobbery of the British aristocracy, and it will do them good!  If Tharkay never marries and dies without heir, the estate goes to some collateral branch or reverts to the crown, and everybody can then heave a sigh of relief that it's back in the hands of Good White British Men, just like it was supposed to be and Tharkay can get quietly forgotten.  If, however, Tharkay marries and has kids ... then the British aristocracy has to deal with the reality of him for generations to come.  And I think that would be good for them.  (Hard as hell on the kids, but good for society as a whole, and I have never been of the opinion that "the world is cruel" is a particularly good reason not to have kids if you would otherwise want them.)

3) CROSSOVER POTENTIAL.  They are now in the tail end of the regency!  Think of all the Regency romances you could cross them with!  Would Georgiana Darcy be a suitable wife for either of them?  How about Mary Crawford?  And, of course, you could cross them over without romance, but where's the fun in that?

Which leaves me with two options for satisfying my yen for post-canon Temeraire fic.  Either they are together but married to highly accommodating wives, or they are not together and "just" very close friends.
beatrice_otter: Regina holding an apple (Apple)
As I was taking a few minutes to make myself some home-made macaroni and cheese, I thought to myself, "Self, there are probably other people on teh intarwebs who would love to make themselves a really-easy single-serving of homemade mac-and-cheese, if only they knew how."  And lo!  here is my Christmas gift to you all.

You will need:
a bowl
a spoon
a microwave
Macaroni (idk, half a cup? however much you will eat? remember that it expands when you cook it)
water (enough to cook the macaroni)
Cheese (a couple of slices)
Salt & Pepper
Optional:
a plate
Milk
flour/bisquick
dried onion flakes

What you do: you pour macaroni in a bowl, the same bowl you plan on eating out of.  Remember that macaroni grows, so like, a little more than half of how much you think you will want to eat.  Then you pour water in the bowl, so there's more water than macaroni (but not too much more).

Microwave your macaroni-and-water, stirring occasionally.  It'll take like five minutes?  Maybe six?  You'll want to stir it a couple of times in there to keep it from clumping up and to check you have enough water in there.  You can add more water as needed.  Also, the water will bubble over as you cook it so I would recommend putting a plate under the bowl to catch it.  If you have too much water when you're done cooking the macaroni, you can pour some out. But you do want some water still in there for the sauce.  Basically, if water is visible from the top it's too much, but if you don't see any when you dig down to the bottom of the bowl there's too little.

Once the macaroni is tender enough to eat, put your cheese in.  I put in like two slices of velveeta and some Parmesan (maybe a tablespoon or two?  Idk, I just dump some in).  (I also tear up the cheese into small bits so that it melts faster.)  If you've got dried onion flakes in your spice rack, a few shakes of those can pep it up.  Adding a splash of milk and a tablespoon or two of flour or bisquick will make the sauce creamier.  You stir all this up and microwave it for another minute or so (enough for the cheese to melt).  Then you stir it and add salt and pepper to taste.  If it's not cheesy enough, you add another slice of cheese.  If it's too cheesy ... realistically, is it ever too cheesy?

Tada!  There you have it!  In five minutes, with very little more effort than it would take to make the boxed kind, you have homemade macaroni and cheese.  And all you have dirtied is a bowl, a spoon, and a plate.

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