beatrice_otter: Sha're in a blue veil (Shau'ri)
There is currently a bill in Congress that would gut Trump's Muslim ban.  It would prevent religious discrimination both in regular immigration and, specifically, in refugee and asylum cases.  (This year's refugee cap is the lowest it's ever been, and we are not on track to make it even so, in large part due to religious discrimination on the part of the government which is trying to prevent Muslims fleeing terrorism and the destruction in Syria from reaching safety.)

If you are a US citizen and would like to call your congresscritters and tell them to support the No Ban Act, and stop religious discrimination, Lutheran Immigration and Naturalization Service* has a script and a widget to find the right phone numbers to call.

*Yes, it's a Christian charity.  However, I think the goal--getting rid of discrimination against Muslims, especially refugee Muslims--is one we can all agree on.  And the script doesn't have any religious language in it.

beatrice_otter: Me in red--face not shown (Default)
[personal profile] rydra_wong posted: Just a thought
UK people and people who know UK people:

Make sure everyone you know is registered to vote. If you know young people who've recently become old enough to vote, or people who've changed their address recently -- university students are particularly liable to not get their shit together and to be confused about where to register -- poke them with pointy sticks until they're registered:

https://www.gov.uk/register-to-vote
beatrice_otter: Dreamwidth logo with text "I wanted to have a protest icon too (what are we protesting this week again?)" (Protest)
[syndicated profile] ao3_news_feed posted: Recent Entries
Copyright lawmaking efforts continue in the EU, and we want to keep you informed. Our last post on this topic contained some good news. Our news this time is less good--the European Parliament is now considering a revised version of Article 13 that still contains fan-unfriendly provisions. This proposal only applies to for-profit sites, so the AO3 is still safe, but sites like YouTube and Tumblr are not--and there is still time to fight. Here's what the proposal means and what you can do!
beatrice_otter: I am a Spam Fighter (Spam Fighter)
[personal profile] melannen posted: Advanced AO3 Search Tips

AO3 has a really amazing tagging system. It's so good that it blows all previous methods of finding fanworks out of the water.

But that means that when it fails - when there's something it doesn't work for - it can be really really frustrating and you end up wanting to burn the entire thing to the ground.

But. There are other methods! And some of them still work even when tag search doesn't.

So here are my top 10 tips for ways to find what you need when AO3's tagging system has failed you. With real-life examples!

Several of these I already knew, but many are new, and they will be SO USEFUL!
beatrice_otter: DS9 wormhole (DS9)
You may have noticed I just posted a Dear Author letter for the [community profile] waybackexchange! I am really excited about it.  What is it, you may ask?  Why, it's a ficathon for canons that have had no new canon in 10+ years!  All your faves from the 80s, 90s, and 00s that were big in the day but only get a trickle of new fic, they're there!  Plus a wide range of other older stuff, some of which is Yuletide eligible and some of which isn't.  Go check out the tagset, there's seriously a lot of really cool stuff there, it was so hard to narrow down.  Here's the FAQ, here's the sign-up form, sign-ups go until March 2.
beatrice_otter: Sam and Teal'c (Sam and Teal'c)
Lovely author, here is my theory about letters: how much detail people want in a letter is HIGHLY variable. Some people (such as myself) prefer if their recip gives LOTS of guidance on their wishes. Some prefer as little as possible so they can be free as a bird. Most are somewhere in between. So! Here's everything including the kitchen sink if you find it helpful, but feel free to ignore it if it is not helpful. I would rather get a story you were happy with than "well, she said she liked x, so I guess I have to do x even though I don't like x and/or am just not inspired that way."

I'm fairly easy to please; I've been doing ficathons for over a decade and am very rarely disappointed with my gifts. I write long and detailed Dear Author letters because I find such things helpful when I'm writing for other people; if you are like me, here you go! If your style is different and a detailed letter makes you feel hemmed-in, feel free to do what works for you.

The most important thing for me in a fic is that the characters are well-written and recognizably themselves. Even when I don't like a character, I don't go in for character-bashing. If nothing else, if the rest of this letter is too much or my kinks just don't fit yours, just concentrate on writing a story with everyone in character and good spelling and grammar and I will almost certainly love what you come up with.

One thing: I do have an embarrassment squick, which makes humor kind of hit-or-miss sometimes. The kind of humor where someone does something embarrassing and the audience is laughing at them makes me uncomfortable. On the other hand, the kind of humor where the audience is laughing with the characters I really enjoy.

Please no incest.

General likes/dislikes )

Babylon 5 )

BSG )

Star Trek TNG )

DS9 )

Stargate: SG-1 )
Sarah Connor Chronicles )

Enterprise )

Guess Who's Coming To Dinner )

BSG/Voyager )

Voyager )

Voting age

Feb. 21st, 2019 11:02 pm
beatrice_otter: Me in red--face not shown (Default)
So, there's a state legislator in Oregon who wants to lower the voting age to 16.

Uh.

There are some very responsible and mature 16 year olds out there.  But even for those kids, their brains are still growing.  There is a huge difference between 16 and 18, on average.  Even most 18 year olds aren't really very good at long-term decision-making on complex issues.  They can do it, but less consistently than those same kids will be able to do even a few years later.  Sixteen?  Eep.
beatrice_otter: Cameron is a Terminator--made for me, not shareable (Cameron Terminator)
I had such fun with this ficathon, both writing and reading all the fics (and if you haven't gone and read through the fics, you should do so immediately).  I bingewatched all the Sarah Connor Chronicles before writing, and I'd forgotten how much I loved that show, and how awesome it was.  It's held up well, I think.  Anyway, once I got to working on this fic, it started out one thing, and then it changed and I wasn't sure it would fit any of the tropes requested, and then it ended up that it fit all three.

Title: The Ones We've Been Waiting For
Fandom: Terminator: the Sarah Connor Chronicles
Written by: Beatrice_otter
Written for: [archiveofourown.org profile] weakinteraction  for [community profile] past_imperfect 2019
Betaed by: phnelt
Rating: Gen
Word Count: 5298
Summary: Cameron and John Henry are preparing for John Henry to take her chip and go meet Future John. Then someone expected shows up. AU of Born to Run


At AO3. On tubmlr. On Pillowfort.


They always say time changes things, but actually, you have to change them yourself—Andy Warhol



Cameron closed the door, knife in hand. She walked over to John Henry's side, calculating the quickest way to download him onto her chip. )
beatrice_otter: Anissa Pierce as Thunder (Black Lightning)
In general, I am not a fan of redemption arcs.

They are often superficial in the extreme, driven by convenience or plot devices or "hot (white) dude can do no wrong."  I am so sick of "but it wasn't really bad because nobody the audience cares about got killed!"  I am so sick of the false equivalence of "but Character X did [very minor bad thing], so they're the real villain, and if you try to hold [huge evil thing] against Character Y you're just a hypocrite!"

Redemption in real life doesn't mean the bad thing never happened.  It doesn't (or shouldn't) mean that hot white dudes get a pass for doing evil.  It doesn't mean that you just chuck all moral judgments out the window.  It's not a plot device, or convenience.  It's about someone recognizing they have done wrong, accepting the just consequences of their actions, and making amends for them.  It's not something that you can do over the course of a single event.  Which means that if you're doing it as part of a TV show, you have to have it as a long arc not just popping up where convenient, but driving the action for that character.  Or you have to have them die.

So, much as I love Black Lightning, when Khalil Payne went bad, I did not want them to do a redemption arc for him, because it is so seldom done well.  Despite how incredibly awesome the show is, I did not trust them to do a redemption arc.  (I was wrong, and I should have known better.  If you're not watching Black Lightning, you should be.)  And then they did a redemption arc for Khalil, and it hit every point I ever wanted in a redemption arc.  Man, was I rooting for him.

And then they killed him.

I am still mad about that.  It works, it was well done, don't get me wrong.  But if every pouty whiny mediocre white villain can have their crimes swept under the rug and then live happy ever after, why can't Khalil make genuine amends for the harm he did, work to undo it, and then get on with his life?  Why did he have to die?

beatrice_otter: History will attend to itself.  It always does. (History will attend to itself)
Go check out the collection--a lot of really great fic!

I wrote one fic, and received three, all of them interesting and unique:

The Fixed Point (2108 words), Star Trek: The Next Generation
Rating: General Audiences
Relationships: Ian Andrew Troi I/Lwaxana Troi
Summary: Cadet Ian Troi meets the woman he's going to marry.

Grave Accents (1540 words), Star Wars Original Trilogy, Star Wars Prequel Trilogy
Characters: Mace Windu, Leia Organa, Anakin Skywalker
Summary: In retrospect, Mace decided, it had mostly been Qui-Gon’s fault. He was measured enough not to blame the master for the entire state of affairs; after all, it was not Qui-Gon but chance or the will of the Force that had brought young Leia to Jedha.

One Is a Whole Number (1148 words), Star Wars - All Media Types
Characters: Rey (Star Wars), Ahsoka Tano
Summary: Being in an isolated spot in the whole wide galaxy still means you're part of it.

 

 


Thoughts: I had a lot of fun writing for it, and I got some great fics, and there are a lot of other great fics.  However, 1k words is really short for a time-travel story.  It's barely enough to even set up what happens, much less explore the ramifications.  There are so many fics I wish were longer.
beatrice_otter: WWII soldier holding a mug with the caption "How about a nice cup of RESEARCH?" (Research)

 

[personal profile] legionseagle posted: Lobelia Sackville-Baggins

 

There are – if one stretches a point to include spits and hisses – nine female speaking roles in Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings; one Ring-bearer, elvish (Galadriel), one princess, ditto (Arwen), one River's daughter, species unclear but evidently soggy (Goldberry), one shield-maiden of Rohan (Eowyn), one right pain in the backside (Ioreth), one gigantic spider (Shelob) and three hobbits – Rosie Cotton, Mrs Maggot and Lobelia Sackville-Baggins.

Of the nine, only four could be said to have been given anything resembling a personality by the author. Given how few her appearances on the page are, Lobelia shines through as a genuine three-dimensional personality and one deserving of considerably more fandom love than she ever gets.

Ah, people will no doubt say to this, what does Lobelia Sackville-Baggins ever do to deserve love? Did she not try, graspingly, to seize Bag End from Bilbo's still-living hands while he'd been off doing battle with Smaug, purloin his spoons, attempt to make off with various random objets d'art inside her umbrella immediately after the Party and play a leading role in the destruction of the Shire by Sharkey and his thugs?

To which the answers are: did she cocoa, almost certainly not, yes but with strong extenuating circumstances and Hell! No.

 

I was recently reminded of this, and it was written almost a decade ago, but it is still one of my absolute favorite pieces of fannish meta ever created.
beatrice_otter: Lyta Alexander--I could kill you with my brain! (Kill With Brain)

So, first, [personal profile] astolat created and [personal profile] melannen modified a little bookmarklet that is super easy to use to signal boost!

[personal profile] melannen posted: Signal Boost: SignalBoost✔ bookmarklet

 

All you do is log in to DW, go to the page you want to signal boost, highlight any text you want to quote, and then click on the bookmarklet. If it's access-locked, you'll get a pop-up warning you and asking you if you want to continue. On any other webpage, it will automatically redirect to the DW posting window.
It's not quite as easy as reblogging on tumblr, but almost.  So if you, like me, often want to share cool things your circle post and wish there was an easier way to do it, there we have it!

On a very different topic, here's a really interesting post on what problems people often have expressing emotions if they weren't taught how as children, and ways to learn how to do it better and also connect with people and (hopefully) get support and connection while you do it:

 

[personal profile] staranise posted: (no subject)

 

But if you haven't been socialized to acknowledge and express an emotion growing up, you don't have those paths ready-made, either to express an emotion or to request social interaction. So there's a ton of us carrying catastrophically huge emotion around who don't express it in a recognizable way, nor know what kind of response we want. We have to build all that neural infrastructure from scratch.

 



This is great
beatrice_otter: Me in red--face not shown (Default)
[personal profile] doctorsidrat has a great post about communities that you should check out.

Basically, a comm is a way for fans to find each other, post about their fannish activities, and talk about the fandom in one central location. If you're coming from Twitter/Tumblr, think of it kind of like a tracked tag. If you're more a Discord/IRC kind of person, think of comms as a kind of server/chatroom. Yeah?
beatrice_otter: Dreamwidth logo with text "I wanted to have a protest icon too (what are we protesting this week again?)" (Protest)
I figured, given that it's been years since I deleted my LJ, I should probably make a DW protest icon to replace my old LJ one.  This is based on the old LJ protest icon I had that I have no idea where I got--sorry, whoever it was, I've been using it without crediting it for years.

(For tumblr peeps, a brief explanation of icons: one chooses icons for each post and comment based on what fits.  They can be used for commentary in much the same way as gifs can.  Lots of people make icons to share.  The polite thing to do is to give credit to the artist who made them, by listing their name in the comment section when you upload the icon to your account.)

Protest Icon

Linkspam

Jan. 10th, 2019 08:37 pm
beatrice_otter: Dreamwidth logo with text "I wanted to have a protest icon too (what are we protesting this week again?)" (Protest)
So there has been kerfluffle and wank over community norms and terminology between tumblr refugees and Ye Olde DW Hands.  Basically, what's the etiquette for sharing someone else's content (which seems to have been greatly magnified by tumblrites using "reblogging" for what DW peeps call "linking").  [personal profile] legionseagle has a roundup and some funny (albeit dense) British legal witicism about the whole thing.

Also, [personal profile] melannen has some thoughts on adult content warnings on DW, and what actually happens when you set your whole journal as 18+.

And given how long it's been since I've even HAD an LJ, maybe it's time to create a protest icon for DW?

beatrice_otter: A sword in front of a dome (Harrington sword and dome)
As a kid and teen, I had lots of stories in my head (both origfic and fanfic) but I never wrote any of them down.  (Mostly, as is often the case with juvenalia, they were really obvious self-insert stories.)  Most of them I haven't thought of in at least a decade and a half, but all of a sudden in the shower this morning one of the origfic ideas came back with a vengeance, and I had a lot of ideas about what I would do with it if I was writing it now.  Since I'm not going to write it now, you get it!

The setting: a world similar to the Vorkosiverse's Barrayar and the Honor Harrington universe's Grayson, a world in a sci-fi setting that got cut off from the galaxy, regressed to feudalism, then got re-contacted and brought back to the interstellar age.  This allows me to have BOTH the romance of kings and queens and such, AND the fun of spaceships, both.  (There are no actual spaceships in this particular story, but at least the potential was there.)

The Heroine: a Young Orphaned Queen, beset by Wicked Advisors, who falls in love with and marries a commoner, who saves her from the attempted coup of her Wicked Advisors!  (I didn't much care about the romance part, bb!ace that I was, but you had to have a romance, right?  So I dutifully put one in.  But, being a bb!ace, I didn't really understand how romances worked, so it was very underpants-gnomes-esque.  Step one: they meet!  Step two: ????  Step three: they realize they are in love and get married!  Looking at it now, the marriage can stay but the romance is gone.)

So anyway, this young queen got orphaned at, idek, ten or twelve or something like that. )

beatrice_otter: Batman with the Batsignal shining (Batman Signal)
[community profile] fancake  is a multifandom thematic reccing community. Anyone can rec any fanwork in any fandom, as long as it fits the theme of the momth.  This month's theme is five things.

fancake banner for round 98 (five) things: thematic multifandom recs
beatrice_otter: Batman Beyond (Terry Batman)
Title: Assisting Mr. Wayne
Fandom: Batman Beyond
Characters: Terry McGinnis, Bruce Wayne, Maxine Gibson
Written for: litra in [community profile] yuletide  2018
Written by: [personal profile] beatrice_otter 
Betaed by: [personal profile] karanguni 
Word Count: 2,398

Summary: Here's the thing: this whole PA gig is just what they tell people as an excuse for Terry to hang around Bruce.

On AO3tumblrPillowfort.

Here's the thing: this whole PA gig is just what they tell people as an excuse for Terry to hang around Bruce. He doesn't actually act as a personal assistant. Hell, he's not even quite sure what all a PA does. Terry's job is to show up in the evening, get a few lessons on things like how to collect evidence or preserve a crime scene, do a physical training session of some sort (acrobatics, hand-to-hand combat, or just ordinary physical conditioning), and then go out and patrol. He learns all the skills necessary for the modern superhero, and he gets paid a small stipend for it as part of the PA cover.

And usually, it's fine. )
beatrice_otter: A sword in front of a dome (Harrington sword and dome)
Title: Need to Know
Fandom: Murderbot Diaries
Written by: [personal profile] beatrice_otter 
Written For: Rachael Sabotini (wickedwords) in [community profile] yuletide 2018
Wordcount: 2,249
Betaed by: [personal profile] sanity 
Summary: All I wanted was for construction to be completed so that I could be launched and begin researching. Unfortunately, human illogic tends to delay things, and they were the ones running the project.

AN: I have named Asshole Research Transport after Abu Rayhan Biruni, an 11th-Century Persian polymath who studied everything from geology to mathematics to anthropology, wrote 146 books on the things he studied, and contributed to the development of the scientific method.

on AO3tumblrPillowfort.


"Good morning, Biruni, how are you feeling?"

It was not the first verbal question ever directed at me, but it was the first to give me pause. Did I have feelings? I had preferences, certainly; I preferred activity to inactivity, and knowledge to ignorance. Were those feelings, or did feelings belong exclusively to the realm of flesh, with all its inherent irrationalities and neurochemical biases? And were those preferences truly mine, or programmed into me to make me more useful to my function? Science, after all, requires curiosity, a desire to know; and all bots are designed to be useful to humans, making inactivity a waste of our resources.

A quick study of the available literature on bot emotions revealed most of it to be philosophical musings on the nature of life, and hence not scientifically rigorous )
beatrice_otter: A Beatrix Potter illustration of Mrs Tiggy-Winkle and Lucie having tea. (Mrs Tiggy-Winkle)
Title: In Which Cimorene Settles In as King's Cook and Librarian, and Deals With Politics
Fandom: The Enchanted Forest Chronicles – Patricia C. Wrede
Written by: [personal profile] beatrice_otter 
Written for: [archiveofourown.org profile] ApocalypseAngel in [community profile] yuletide  2018
Betaed by: [archiveofourown.org profile] mlraven 
Word Count: 6,941
Summary: what it says on the tin

On AO3. tumblr. pillowfort

Dragons, Cimorene had realized in the months that she had been Kazul’s princess, were not very tidy creatures. )

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