edenfalling: stylized black-and-white line art of a sunset over water (Default)
I was reading a post on [community profile] asexual_fandom about writing asexuals in sexual situations and whether this was too prevalent in fandom (or not prevalent enough?) and in any case, was it often badly handled and so on and so forth, which had the interesting effect of making me go and write several hundred words of "The Body Politic," my Astrin-Ymris-is-asexual Riddle-Master fic. Said words are mostly a very long riddle about a woman who gets raped and is terrified her husband will blame her, rather than anything actually related to asexuality or, you know, the damn plot, but whatever. I needed to get the riddle out of the way at some point.

I think it is helpful to be slightly tipsy when writing McKillip-style riddles. At least, it's helpful for me. I don't think in riddles naturally, so I need to be able to bend my mind into someone else's thought patterns, and sleep deprivation or alcohol are the cheap and easy ways to do that. *wry*


I do have an actual plot for that story now. I'd always known where it was heading -- well, okay, once I'd decided which outline sketch to use, I knew where it was heading -- but I had only the vaguest idea how to get there. Now I have the middle to go with the beginning and the end.


In other news, Diana Wynne Jones did indeed stick the landing on the Dalemark Quartet. I may write a more detailed (and spoiler-filled) post about that later. I have read all the Yuletide Dalemark fic there is, and would really like to know if any more exists, because that series has so many wonderful characters and countless potential stories.

Also, and unrelatedly, I watched Inception a couple weeks ago and have been having far too much fun reading through all the fic I can get my hands on. I love stories about competent people being awesome. :-)
edenfalling: stylized black-and-white line art of a sunset over water (Default)
I opened "The Body Politic" last night and wrote a bit more, until I hit a snag where Astrin needs to pose a riddle to Rork, answer it himself, and give the stricture. This, alas, requires me to write the riddle, the answer, and the stricture, and McKillip's riddles are trickier than they seem at a casual glance -- at least for me. My mind does not naturally follow those paths.

Also, Astrin keeps insisting that there is no reason for him to talk about sexual orientations with Rork, and I am having a hard time persuading him otherwise. I think, in all honesty, he may be right -- at least for the moment -- and I can break the tension by having Morgon and Raederle arrive unexpectedly at Caerweddin. The explanation will probably work better later on, after plot has occurred. It seems to want to be a climactic moment. *sigh*

In other news, both the movie and the book I require for Yuletide arrived today -- hurrah! I will probably reread the book Thursday during lunch and after work, and watch the movie on Friday. Then I will see what story ideas come to mind, because I have (realistically speaking) only two weeks to write a thousand words of whatever.


It is very odd to realize that in less than three weeks, I will be on an airplane to Spain. I haven't been out of the USA since 1999 -- I am out of practice at trans-oceanic travel!
edenfalling: circular blue mosaic depicting stylized waves (ocean mosaic)
Apropos of nothing in particular:

There are two very important characters in Patricia McKillip's Riddle-Master trilogy who are never directly given their proper, original names. One is the High One, whom we meet in various guises (each with its own name), but based on the words of the dead children under Isig Mountain and a few things he says near the end of Harpist in the Wind, one can work out his original name: Tir, Master of Earth and Wind.

The other is the woman who leads the shape-changers. She enters the story masquerading as a named human character and then is only ever referred to as "the woman you knew as So-and-So," "the dark, delicately beautiful Earth-Master," "a dark-haired woman," "the woman," and so on and so forth. My guess is that her original name is also one of the names provided by the dead children under Isig -- Edolen or Sec, in other words; one of "those from the sea" -- but unlike the High One's name, hers is never confirmed within the story.

This annoys me both from a feminist perspective and from a fic-writing perspective.
edenfalling: circular blue mosaic depicting stylized waves (ocean mosaic)
So clearly I failed at [livejournal.com profile] lgbtfest this year. I knew I was nuts to sign up.

However! I do have 1,300 words written toward the prompt I chose, and a clear idea where the story is going. It's just been... well, it keeps trying to be about semi-feudal politics and not about sexual orientations. I am not sure how much of that is because Astrin Ymris is a very private person, and how much is because I am apparently less comfortable than I thought writing specifically about my own sexual orientation (aromantic asexual).

Fortunately there will apparently be an option to write to prompts outside of the official fest timeframe, and a place to post links to those stories.

So I am going to keep writing, because I think "The Body Politic" is both a story worth telling in its own right, and something I need to work on as part of dealing with my own issues.
edenfalling: stained-glass butterfly in a purple frame (butterfly)
I'm doing [livejournal.com profile] thirtyforthree again, this time for Kira Sakuya/Mudo Setsuna/Mudo Sara from Kaori Yuki's Angel Sanctuary. There will be spoilers in nearly every theme -- given the characters, it's nearly impossible to avoid them! -- and a lot of potentially objectionable content. This is because the source manga has a lot of potentially objectionable content. If incest squicks you, or you know you'll be bothered by some unusual and often negative interpretations of Judeo-Christian theology, you probably won't want to read any of these stories.

With that said...

Theme: #11 - Snowfall
Warnings: spoilers!
Notes: The main plot of this ficlet is set post-manga, in very late 2007. The flashbacks run from shortly after the First Holy War to shortly before Setsuna's birth, and are not all in chronological order. Setsuna is 24; Sara is 23. This falls between Talking Over Distance and "Looking" (which I have not yet finished).

It took me about three years to write this, mostly because I was never quite sure where it was going. I am still not sure it all hangs together logically, but whatever. (6,900 words)

The Transient and the Eternal: Snowfall )


In other news, I have obviously missed my posting date for [livejournal.com profile] lgbtfest. *sigh* I will try to get the story finished this week and post it next Wednesday, since Wednesdays are amnesty posting days this year. (The story has gone annoyingly political on me... by which I mean that I want to be writing about sexual orientations but the characters are determined to talk about inheritance rules and the political implications of tangled Ymris genealogy and marriage games. *headdesk* Astrin, for my sake, please stop being so private and just tell Rork your main reason for remaining single instead of arguing all the ancillary justifications!)
edenfalling: stylized black-and-white line art of a sunset over water (Default)
So, having successfully defeated Remix Redux 8, I now have to write my [livejournal.com profile] lgbtfest story in less than a week, as it is due Monday the 31st. *headdesk*

For the record, I expected to have two weeks to write this story, since I thought I'd be done with my remix on the 16th instead of fighting it down to the absolute last wire on the 23rd, but still. A tight schedule.

Therefore, I have two outlines. The long one has five scenes and covers, oh, a bit less than 15 years. The short one has only one scene and covers only one conversation, with judicious one-paragraph flashbacks to incidents that would be the first four scenes in the long outline.

Today I went back and read through canon, and...

You know, it occurs to me that I can actually talk about this story; it's not anonymous. *grin* So. I am writing about Astrin Ymris, from Patricia McKillip's Riddle-Master trilogy, being asexual, based on the following prompt: Riddle of Stars, Astrin Ymris, 'Your son is the only land-heir I want or need, Rork,' Astrin said quietly. 'So stop trying to marry me off.' I realize that could also be read as Astrin being gay and maybe in a relationship with Rork (which is justifiable from canon), but I prefer to read it as Astrin being asexual and Rork just being a good and worried friend (which is also justifiable from canon, and doesn't require me to either kill Rork's OC wife or make him cheat on said wife during the years Astrin spent living on Wind Plain, neither of which appeals to me).

So today I sat down and skimmed through The Riddle-Master of Hed, Heir of Sea and Fire, and Harpist in the Wind to find every time Astrin appears or is mentioned, and also read several other sections just because I got caught up in the story. I have adjusted my outline to fix things I had misremembered and to work in neat details I had completely forgotten (like Astrin being a student at Caithnard for a year).

Tomorrow I will start writing, and we shall see how it goes.

*crosses fingers*
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1. I went grocery shopping this evening and discovered that Tops has decided to close the P&C location on Hancock St. (Tops is a grocery chain that recently bought most of the old P&C grocery chain; what they didn't claim, Price Chopper did.) Either they were not able to negotiate rents with the couple who own the site, or they decided the store was not profitable enough.

It will close in mid-April.

This is unfortunate, as that store was the only grocery store within walking distance of my apartment, and all other stores require a twenty-minute walk into town and then a fifteen or thirty-minute bus ride (in other words, forget buying dairy products; they will curdle) or a ten minute walk and a five minute bus ride to the ultra-discount Aldi, and I don't really like discount stores; they have such awful selection.

So it looks as though I will be joining the Ithaca car share program and doing all my shopping once a week down at Wegmans. *sigh* Damn it all to hell.


2. In a fit of madness, I signed up (at least, I think I signed up) for this year's [livejournal.com profile] lgbtfest. I found a prompt that really spoke to me in a fandom I know. I think it may have originally been intended to be about a man dealing with subsidiary issues of being gay, but it can be read equally validly as a man dealing with asexuality, and upon considering said character (Astrin Ymris, from Patricia McKillip's Riddle Master trilogy), I suddenly cannot see him as anything but asexual and cannot figure out why I didn't realize that before.

And the fest is allowing prompts and stories about asexual issues this year, so my interpretation is allowable. Yay!

I have realized over the years that while I see some characters as asexual and tend to write most people as not especially interested in sex and/or romance unless said desires are notable character traits or sex is the point of a given story, I have never really written about asexuality as an issue. It will be interesting to try. It's something weirdly personal, in a way that other issues aren't usually for me. (Not even feminism, because for me, being female and therefore part of a community of women and girls has never been a question, whereas being asexual is something it took me time to realize and start working out what the implications meant for me on a practical and emotional level. And I still have not told my family in so many words, though I have danced very pointedly up and down the edges of the issue.)

Of course, from another point of view a ridiculous amount of stuff I write is already dealing with asexuality and/or aromanticism, since even when I am writing sex and romance, my treatment of said elements is awfully dry and glossed over, and I place more importance on friendship and familial relationships anyway. But still, the one time I previously tried writing a story specifically about asexuality, I was still not down with the whole implications of the thing (I had identified myself as asexual, but not really connected that to there being other asexual people) and therefore tried to justify a character's planned asexuality as nerve damage or some-such instead of just letting his orientation be natural and normal. That pathologizing of my own orientation is probably as much a reason I abandoned that story as my growing lack of interest in Harry Potter in general.

Anyway, hopefully I will be working on both my issues and this new story, and have something presentable done at the end of May.


3. I've been overdosing on Code Geass fanfic the past few days. (You may have noticed over the years that I have a thing for mind games and antiheroes, though I rarely write them. I also have a thing for explorations of morality and ethics, which I do write about. Also, war stories are cool.) The upshot of this is that I have added the series to my Netflix queue and am morbidly curious about whether I'll enjoy it.


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Elizabeth Culmer

October 2017

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