pensnest: Beast dressed as a priest (Beast)
I get cuddles on demand, tea in bed every morning, and integrity.

He gets… hmm. Cuddles demanded, something different for dinner every day, aesthetics.

Something like that. It works.
pensnest: Lizzie Bennett drawing: I am excessively diverted (Lizzie Bennett is excessively diverted)
I've just finished watching the film of Mansfield Park (1999), in which Fanny is much more interesting than I remember her being in the book. Perhaps I should re-read the book. Hmm.

How about some Alternative Jane Austen endings?

Pride and Prejudice - no improvement necessary or possible

Emma - no improvement necessary (though I did beta a *very* appealing alternate timeline in which Emma and Jane Fairfax become Very Close, and I can't help feeling Emma would be a better mate for Jane than Frank Churchill would)

Persuasion - no improvement necessary or possible

Sense and Sensibility - Colonel Brandon dotes on Marianne and treats her like daddy's little princess because he thinks of her as a daughter. While he's doting, he gradually comes to realise that he is in love with Elinor, who is far too awesome to settle for a wimp like Edward. \o/ Surely everybody who reads this book wants Elinor and Colonel Brandon to end up together?

Mansfield Park - Fanny recognises that while Crawford would be a very bad husband, Edmund would bore even Fanny to death after a while (the written text not having the advantage of Jonny Lee Miller in the role). Happily for her, Colonel Fitzwilliam shows up from an entirely different novel, finds her inexplicably fascinating, and turns out to be just the right kind of husband. Or else her nice brother William introduces her to a promising naval officer. Or else she runs away to sea and becomes a pirate.

Northanger Abbey - eh, it's fine .
pensnest: a woeful panda on a green field (Sad panda)
Small creatures have been feasting on my flesh. No, not the cats, who are generally polite about that sort of thing and would not feast on me unless I smeared my body with ice cream, at which point all bets would be off, but invisible beasties who leave red, itchy lumps on me. Started with my wrist, and now my belly itches so much that last night I had to put the light on to check if I had shingles.

Pestilent creatures. I think I need Beast back in the bed (he's been sleeping in another room as between us we are coughing fit to wake the dead, and we both need sleep) as he is usually tastier than I am. She said, ruthlessly prepared to sacrifice the flesh of her beloved.

Arrrr!

Apr. 12th, 2019 05:50 pm
pensnest: Rackham is looking puzzled (Rackham is baffled again)
I need a Lady Pirate name.

My chorus will be doing a Pirates set, and we've been asked to find ourselves a name and backstory for our piratical character. I am pretty sure my backstory is along the lines of, Didn't want to be a secretary, ran away to see and fell in with pirates. But what to call myself?

It's possible I will be wearing a red wig, and I thought maybe Red… something? (Not Red Pen, because that would be an entirely different character!)

Any suggestions?
pensnest: hot air ballon with bow tie, caption de bon air (Balloon)
I'd always meant to do these...

Day 10: Create a fanwork. Leave a comment in this post saying you did it. Include a link to your post if you feel comfortable doing so.

Taking Turns is the fanwork I managed to create this year. So, that's done.

Day 11: In your own space, talk about your creative process(es) — anything from the initial inspiration to how you feel after something’s done. Do you struggle with motivation or is it a smooth process? Do you have any tricks up your sleeve to pull out when a fanwork isn’t cooperating? What is your level of planning to pantsing/winging it? Leave a comment in this post saying you did it. Include a link to your post if you feel comfortable doing so.

(I just found my answer to this, saved amidst the chaos of my desktop, which is why I'm posting my last gasp for Snowflake Challenge 2019) )
pensnest: Kevin Richardson with pointy star (Kevin star)
I suspect that twice doesn't actually count as a 'tradition', but I have managed to post a story for Ephemera on her birthday before (long, long ago!), and here is one that I've been meaning to write for a long while and only now got round to.

It's the sequel to this story, Give it a Spin, written for Ullman in MTYG 2011, so this sequel is also for Ullman.

Taking turns )
pensnest: Data outline of face against mauve/pink sky (Data first love)
I think I've taught myself to change my 'type'!

In my gateway fandom, I naturally went for Data, not just because he was a sidekick and played by a very good actor, but also because he was skinny and had a face more notable for bones than handsomeness. I did a 'List' post years ago, most of which Photoshop has now jettisoned, but it included Gene Wilder and Jon Stewart, and perhaps also Geoffrey Rush, as examples of 'My Type'.

The ridiculous prettiness of the NSYNC boys was quite novel territory for me, as well as converting me to slash. Adam Lambert must, I think, be in the same vein.

But since my barbershop conversion, I've become very ohsovery interested in these guys, and by all the laws of my previous preferences I should be entranced by tall, skinny, bony David Zimmerman, the tenor. I'm not, though he is cute, indeed.

Which one have I been weaving epics about? Because those epics have caused me to start evaluating other chaps in a similar way, and it's quite disconcerting.
pensnest: bright-eyed baby me (Default)
Butfirst: European council president Tusk said: “Let me make one personal remark to the members of this parliament. Before the European council, I said that we should be open to a long extension if the UK wishes to rethink its Brexit strategy, which would of course mean the UK’s participation in the European parliament elections. And then there were voices saying that this would be harmful or inconvenient to some of you.
Let me be clear: such thinking is unacceptable. You cannot betray the 6 million people who signed the petition to revoke article 50, the 1 million people who marched for a people’s vote, or the increasing majority of people who want to remain in the European Union.”

Thank you, Donald Tusk. It's nice to be recognised as sincere and European, particularly since our own politicians won't even acknowledge our existence. Bastards.

Cut for personal stuff and fatal violence )
pensnest: Lance all fierce and stuff, caption grar! (Lance GRAR!)
GRAAAAAAAAAAAAAR! !!!!! ! Ack.

TOTO Energry. *AVOID*AVOID*AVOID*

Fucking incompetent bastards.

I switched supply in January. In February (after our first, double size, payment was made) I discovered that they were using the wrong electricity meter number. I pointed this out. They had switched our neighbour's electricity instead of ours. They knew this on 15th February.

What with one interaction and another, I wrote an icily more-or-less civil two-page letter to their Complaints Department (who must be deluged) two weeks ago. Still no response.

I have just had an infuriating online chat with a person who—unlike the other TOTO representatives I had contacted hitherto—could at least write coherent English sentences, but who was blankly unable to acknowledge my point and give me an answer. Apparently it will take 6-8 more weeks to get this sorted out - which is, probably, not so bad for my neighbour, who will be getting free electricity until TOTO sorts out its mistake, but it is doing my blood pressure no good at all.

I am placing a small bet with myself that we are going to be charged for the electricity supplied to our neighbours during this period.

I am going to have to wait until all this is sorted out before switching my energy supply to someone - anyone - else.

*AVOID*AVOID*AVOID*
pensnest: bright-eyed baby me (Default)
Wow. I wish I'd been in Parliament Square for this! What an awesome feat of crowd co-operation.

*

The Petition is now at more than 5.2 million signatures. If you're a UK citizen and would like not to Brexit, have you signed? It is here.
pensnest: bright-eyed baby me (Default)
Well, this morning I have cooked breakfast for my Beast (who is out all day for song coaching), completed and sent out a newsletter, received a phone call about a distant family death from a relative-in-law who quite seriously believed Germany is about to start another war so that they can TOTALLY DESTROY US BECAUSE THEY ARE EVIL, EVIL I TELL YOU, phew (yes, I revealed to her the fact that I was on yesterday's march), sorted out a food order and a plumbing query for my FIL, and reassured a friend with high blood pressure. And had a coffee.

Yes, I was anticipating a nice quiet day to recover from yesterday's exertions.

So I am now listening to Instant Classic singing 'If I May', because they are adorable and really, really good.

The march yesterday. I made friends with my seat-mate on the coach and we decided to stick together for the day. We also managed to meet up with my brother-in-law, who lives in West Ken and found us by the Byron statue at the bottom of Park Lane, which turned out to be a good place to lurk as we were close enough to hear the brief speeches. These started off okay, but got a bit irritating with the repetition of the insistence on a Socialist solution. I'm a bit too fluid in my beliefs to enjoy being addressed as a socialist. A chant of "We Want To March!" broke out, and people began to move long before the talk was done.

It was very much a march of individuals. I am sure there must have been groups - I think there was a smallish phalanx of Greens, there were some orange LibDem posters, and there were a few big banners proclaiming local geographical/political allegiance, but it never felt like a collection of organised groups, it felt like a collection of people who felt like me—angry and scared and hoping against hope to be able to do something about the crappy situation in which we find ourselves. I'd introduced my seat-mate to knitting on a circular needle, and she was very excited to find another knitter in the throng, merrily concocting a mohair scarf/wrap as we stood waiting to get started. We had a nice little chat about knitting, which isn't something I would have expected. (My BIL had most considerately worn a hat and a scarf I'd created for him!)

There were lots of quite small children on the march, and a lot of parents carrying babies in slings. They have stronger backs than I! There were people behind us speaking French, at one point. There must have been police around—I saw motorbikes as our coach approached Hyde Park Corner—but I didn't spot any along the route. There was, though, a BoJo lookalike sporting a Tories Against Brexit banner, and having selfies taken with delighted marchers. I brandished my banner, and wished I'd put it on a longer pole, but my arms and shoulders are fine. Having started nearer the beginning of the march (I think) I managed to get all the way to the end of Pall Mall, but at that point we broke off to make sure we got to a loo before the coach rendezvous point.

I still want David Cameron to suffer for what he's done to us.
pensnest: Justin gurning in close up (Justin Timberlake god of sex)
Oh, *Robbie*.

My first iteration of that was when he was inflated and singing No-One Likes A Fat Popstar.

Now, I'm in love. I mean, the lad can *SING* (this show is my kind of music, totally), and he has such a sense of humour. I could have done without the Muppets, because interludes like that always make me cringe. He's dancing with Rufus Wainwright now. Oh, now they're in pink.

Justin who?
pensnest: Captain Flint looking haggard (Flint Why must people talk to me?)
I have to believe there are quite a few Labour party members who kinda wish they had a different leader. Yvette Cooper, maybe.

*

Cannot cope with thinking about Brexit. The very existence of our politicians fills me with rage right now. But I booked my coach ticket to get to next week's march.

*

FIL's greenhouse is 'being troublesome' again. This is because he was too cheap to get a proper, glass-based greenhouse, instead he found a Bargain(TM) in polycarbonate, and gave Beast no alternative but to help him put it together. Beast has been Very Stern on the subject, and FIL is now looking at buying a moveable polytunnel which, most likely, will blow away in the first high wind. *bafflement*

*

Just completed a monster newsletter so I am going to veg with a well-deserved cup of coffee, and finish another hat.
pensnest: Octavia is a bored teenager, caption WHATEVER (Rome whatever)
This meme was kinda tempting, so...

Top Five Reasons I haven't read your story

1. It's in one of the many, many current fandoms of which I know nothing. Today is one of the days when I couldn't be bothered to take a look.
2. Your summary contains spelling mistakes/bad grammar/self-effacing disclaimers of poor quality. Life's too short.
3. It's A/b/o, because no. Or Omegaverse, ditto.
4. It's epic, and I really don't have time for 200,000 words of something which isn't in the fandom of my heart. Most days I don't even have time for 20,000 words of same.
5. It's a fandom I sometimes read in, characters I usually like, but it's an AU/a premise I find unappealing.
5a. It's a fandom I sometimes read in, characters I usually like, but a pairing I just cannot care for.
pensnest: bright-eyed baby me (Default)
I'm not doing the AO3 meme that is going around, but it did inspire me yesterday to go through my fics there and rationalise the tags a bit. It's amazing how difficult it can be to think of ways of tagging a story… oh well.

My statistics are weird, anyway, because (a) the majority of my stories were written well before AO3 came to be, and in consequence have few hits, fewer kudos and very few comments. They got their first outings on LJ or DW, so I can't repine. I'm still proud of them.

And (b) the podfics are included, and of course, these were written by other people and recorded by me. So my word count is considerably inflated, and three of my top five by hits were not my fics, but my recordings. Oh well. (The other two were Star Trek:TNG stories, which I wrote in the 1990s…)

I've also posted a couple of elderly fics, an Independence Day story written around twenty years ago and featuring the hideously-dressed Dr Okun, who, as he was played by Brent Spiner, was of interest to me. And the SGA fic I wrote for the I Saw Three Ships challenge in 2009, which I had mysteriously not posted to AO3 before. (Ooh, it has three kudos already. How nice.)

*

Yesterday would have been my Dad's birthday. He'd have been 86, but the Whitmore men haven't tended to make it that far, and my father died in 2008. Or, arguably, when he had a stroke in 2007, because after that he really wasn't my Daddy any more, and his actual death was not devastating. In fact, my grandmother's death (in 2003) made me far sadder, because I had no cause to feel disappointed in Grandma. And, I think because she'd had the forethought to speak to her GP about not being kept alive with "tubes and stuff", she had a much gentler death.

Julian's Dad is the only member of the parental generation left, and he's kinda wobbly these days.
pensnest: A tabby cat looks down balefully from a high shelf.  Caption: Princess Fluffykins is watching you (Princess Fluffykins is watching you)
Went to see Captain Marvel yesterday. :-)

Read more... )
pensnest: Excuse me; Shazzam!; A firework explodes; that's better. (Shazzam)
Twice lately I've seen references to 'The Leaky' in a Harry Potter context, and it makes me wrinkle my nose. Is there canon for referring to The Leaky Cauldron as 'The Leaky'? I have certainly forgotten a lot of Harry Potter stuff, so it is possible there is canon, but I am inclined to believe it is a fannish thing that some bright spark thought up and which has been taken up enthusiastically by people who don't know better.

Surely a British crowd of magical pub-goers would refer to it as 'The Cauldron'. I mean, imagine we were referring to the Golden Dragon. We'd say The Dragon, not The Golden.

*irked*
pensnest: Photo of me with face painted squirls (My squirly face)
(I have had this lurking on my desktop for a while and can no longer remember where the idea came from, but it seems worth posting.)

A honeybee - industriously visits many, many flowers and takes nectar from them all (and, ideally, gives them a revitalising pollen exchange)

A panda - munches industriously on the same grove of bamboo until it is All Gone. Starves for a while, but may be fortunate enough to find a fresh bamboo grove somewhere else.

Fandom-wise, I can only wish I were a honeybee. Honeybees have options everywhere. If one flower loses its flavour, they can buzz merrily along to the next, they can mix up the flower flavours every day, sometimes concentrating on the peonies of MCU or the bluebells of Supernatural, sometimes on the tiny hidden heartsease of Black Sails, whatever. And there is always another enticing flower just along the path.

Pandas, like me, love what they love and don't really want anything else. Pandas can see the flowers, and maybe pause for a sniff now and again (I'm quite partial to peonies), but when it comes to sustenance we just want to get stuck in to our favourite flavour and nothing else is truly satisfying. And when the bamboo is all gone, pandas are bereft.

I suspect there are other kinds. Butterflies, for instance, who flit from flower to flower looking pretty but don't do a lot of pollinating. Wildebeest, who are ready to move in force on to the next thing when they've been in one place for a while. Magpies, who look for specific kinds of shiny and don't much mind where they find them.

What other kinds of fan are there? What kind are you?
pensnest: JC in the sky with a hand held control (JC floating over galaxies)
I went to see my Beast sing in a concert on Saturday. After twenty five years or so of his attending every show I performed in (or directed), it's rather nice that I can go to his performances now. *pride* It was about three minutes' walk from the children's house, so Bun and a friend also turned up.

*

Today we had the basses from mixed chorus here for a practice - my baritones rather failed me, as only one turned up, but it was still fun for the bass clef to sing together, and quite useful.

*

I want to do some recs for [community profile] fancake, which is running a pre-AO3 rec theme. I really wanted to find an awesome story based on 1776 (the musical), which Brent Spiner appeared in in, I think, 1998. But searching for
he plays the slide trombone
he can't seem to leave it alone
and he blows, oh, he blows... etc
sadly availed me nothing. I loved that story and have no idea whether it is still to be found.

*

Sometimes it is nice to read about people being kind to one another. There's a rather sweet Twitter thread here: https://twitter.com/Nicole_Cliffe/status/1102646743659773953 in which people tell of occasions when someone has been kind, and it is quite heartwarming.

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pensnest: bright-eyed baby me (Default)
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