- I saw Dee again today.
- Maisie was in no mood for a ball.
- It was getting easier to shoot people.
- Cassandra was halfway through her second set of sword exercises before she realised someone was quietly trying to get her attention.
- "You know that's not your heart right?"
- "So...how are things in Kirkwall?" asked Varric, like it was no big deal.
- He was dreaming again.
- She caught her up in a punishing kiss.
- "That is a pretty belt, Cassandra," said Leliana. "Did your secret admirer give it to you?"
- They made the loveliest pair of brides Georgiana had ever seen.
And since I posted the finished fic recently but it's actually the first first line I ever posted to the AO3: "Mary Bennet was a very accomplished girl."
In my defense, 8 starts with an excerpt from a deliberately bad romance novel. I was tempted to add the comma that is, in retrospect, CLEARLY missing from 5 but that wouldn't be an accurate reflection of my writing style haha.
Overall I seem to write pretty boring first lines. Many of these are far more interesting in conjunction with the second line, though, eg for 1, "They were so thin, their skin dry as dust, and I could not bear to look them in the eye."
Since it was a little tricky to find all these, for anyone else who'd like to enjoy the story but sucks at reaction times, here's some links.
The Undertale site Has the demo, which is worth playing even if you are terrible at the combat but can otherwise enjoy rpgs. Just keep running away! Most people will improve greatly at any given battle with practice, so don't give up right away. But there's no shame in giving up eventually if it's not fun. Determination isn't everything ;)
The Undertale wiki Has hints on defeating most monsters, information on easter eggs etc.
If you want to watch a playthrough with minimal spoilers this is the best I have found. If you don't mind spoilers for the different kinds of endings I have a more detailed list under the cut.
( Spoilers for the kinds of ending, but not plot spoilers )
Pacifistically "defeating" a foe requires you to figure out what will make them like you: patting a dog, laughing at a would-be comedian's jokes etc. While you're convincing them they still try and kill you, and surviving requires dodging attacks in real time (everything else is turn based). I am VERY BAD AT THIS. They always use the same attacks, so you can learn the pattern, but I just react too slowly. On the plus side you can grind for gold and buy lots of health restoratives, and can run away from all but the boss fights. So I run away from everything I encounter on the way to the next boss fight, beat the boss, save, then grind for a while, save again (getting back to full health each time), and go towards the next boss. According to a friend this approach should get me through the game, hooray. EDIT: It did not.
This review goes into more detail. It reminds me a bit of the walkaround parts of Homestuck, which is also inspired by Earthbound (a classic rpg I have never played)
( moderate spoiler I am glad I was warned about )
The geek girl group was more casual, and a bit more conventional. Ages went from mid twenties to 50s. San Churos doesn't sell much I can eat (unsurprising since their speciality is deep fried pastry with chocolate) but was very accessible. Everyone was very friendly and nice and I felt a little sad to leave.
The queer comic group was more unconventional (in a conventionally "queer" way) and cerebral. People were friendly and generally very positive, I was the only one who had anything bad to say about the art but they were ok with my differing POV, another person spent some time talking about the racist subtext and people were cool with it (as you'd hope but you NEVER KNOW). Ages were younger, I'd say late teens to mid 30s, though I didn't feel notably old. The Moon is much less accessible, my chair made a sad sound as I went over the ramp-so-steep-it's-basically-a-step at the door, and I couldn't even get to the back section where the group meets. Also it was un-airconditioned and the fans made it harder to hear what people said. Next up is Batwoman which I own and enjoyed, yay! Will happily lend it to anyone who would like to go but is feeling poor.
There's a Ladies Comic Book Club, also at the Moon but in the middle of the month. I haven't been to that yet, am still deciding if I can be bothered buying "Nimona" since I didn't like what I've read very much. Can anyone tell me if it gets less silly/surreal/meta? It kept throwing me out of the story and made it hard to engage with the characters or world.
AND THEN just as the comic group was winding down my dad rang saying he and my middle brother were "in the area" (eg near my house) wondering if I wanted a visit. When I said I was at the Moon in the city they met me there instead, which was convenient: I just hung at the comic group until they showed up, then we went to a booth. Oh! And right at the start I got lunch at Is Donburi and they put CHILI in my teriyaki, meaning I had reflux for the rest of the day >:( It was greasy, too, and they'd blocked their otherwise accessible entrance with chairs so I had to sit outside. DO NOT REC.
So all in all a fun but VERY TIRING day. I am going to be a very sore puddle tomorrow.
(*) though typing "San Churos Northbridge to the Moon" confuses Google Maps, haha.
The Wicked and the Divine: there's a queer comic book club this Sunday discussing volume 1, and since I've been meaning to read it anyway I bought the digital version. It was, as others have said, an interesting premise with middling execution, but it does have a lot of lgbt characters and an ethnically diverse cast. Basically: a group of young people have become/realised they are the incarnations of various gods. This means being immortal, having powers like fire, and the ability to "sing" in incomprehensible tongues that cause listeners to be inspired/overcome. So they act exactly like rock stars, with popular cheery goddesses, literally underground gothic death gods etc. The main character is a teenage god fangirl who gets caught up in a mystery around the gods when she befriends "Luci" (Lucifer), basically rule 63 Sandman Lucifer. The plot is moderately interesting though I've been massively spoiled for some major twists by tumblr. The characters are...ok. The dialogue is nowhere near as clever as it thinks it is and mistakes sexual references and clunky one liners for wit. The art is good asides from the bland expressions, like it's traced from 3D models. I'm in that annoying in between place where I'd like to see what happens next but don't like it enough to spend any more money or effort on it. I think I'll wait until it's done then see if I can be bothered.
Miss Marvel (vols 1,2 and 3): this is the other diverse comic the teenagers on tumblr keep posting gifs of and I liked it a lot more, though it's less my kind of thing. A lower middle class muslim teenage superhero fangirl gains super powers, and decides to defend Jersey from evil. It's a pretty straightfoward "optimistic teen gains superpowers" story, but charmingly done, with likable characters, light humour, thrilling fights etc. There's some heavy handed Young Adult Fiction elements, like Consent Is Important, Teenagers Have Value But So Do Parents etc, as well as some plain silly aspects, it felt very aimed at young people. But I still quite enjoyed it as someone who was once a teen fangirl and still gets a kick out of imagining befriending Wolverine (this scene was so cute). Also there's a little Agents of Shield crossover at the end of Vol 3 with Simmons (and Coulson) which I enjoyed.
( Read more... )
Food adventure mark 1: Thanks to Tiki for suggesting I go to the Swansea markets. They were easy to get to by train, accessible (if poky) and had lots of delicious and interesting food I can eat! I've been there before, back before I got my chair, but didn't realise they were so close to a train station (Oat Street). Venison, chocolate free panforte, vegan caramel syrup, grass jelly, and some nice fruit and veg.
Food adventure mark 2: Golden Choice fruit and veg on Roberts Rd Subiaco a few doors down from the train station: great range, good quality, decent prices (mostly better than Swansea St).
Also went to Farmer Jack's supermarket up on Rockeby Rd, they have a wide range of fancy/unusual food including some fancy cashew "cheeses" I can eat. There were some almond milk icecreams but at $17 for 500mL I think I'll stick to small amounts of low fat icecream and mild indigestion.
The cheese: The "classic cheese" tastes more like french onion dip than cheese, but has a nice creamy texture. I may try replicating it with french onion mix and cashews. Delicious but less vegan in a smoked salmon and lettuce sandwich. $13 for a medium sized jar but it's quite strongly flavoured so you don't need much.
Just finished it! At 2am! COULD NOT STOP PLAYING. IT WAS GREAT. Soooooooo much better than the other DLCs. It felt like the actual proper end to the story, which is great unless you are one of the people whose system can't play it, I feel for those guys.
Oh non spoilery reminder: this happens after the end of the game, and also costs 8 power. So I waited all day to play it...then realised I had to get that inquisitor to the end of the game, and THEN get 8 power (the Descent DLC used up all my extra power for boring sidequests)
( Spoilers!! )
...or stay home and play the new Dragon Age DLC with my pixelated lgbt game friends.
Though the way I've been feeling recently it's not much of a decision. I can't pretend not to find this a bit of a relief >.> MY INQUISITOR'S STORY IS IMPORTANT TO ME OK.
WEDDING IS DESTINY AND HANGING LIKEWISE (Wedding is Destiny at Fanfic.net)
Fandom: Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Mary Bennet/Anne de Bourgh
Characters: Mary Bennet, Anne de Bourgh, Lady Catherine de Bourgh, Lydia Bennet, Elizabeth Bennet
Additional Tags: Fanfiction, Mutual Pining, 19th Century, Regency, Humor, Happy Ending, Period-Typical Homophobia, Period-Typical Sexism, Canon Disabled Character, Romance, First Time
Summary:In which Mary Bennet becomes a companion to Anne de Bourgh and neither of them gets quite what they were bargaining for.
The new, final, and complete version of the story originally posted as "Wedding is Destiny and Hanging Likewise" and "London".
And also a little extra deleted scene:
To Love And To Cherish (To Love And To Cherish at Fanfiction.net)
Fandom: Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Mary Bennet/Anne de Bourgh
Characters: Georgiana Darcy, Mary Bennet, Mr Bennet
Additional Tags: Fanfiction, gratuitous fluff, Wedding Fluff
Summary:A little deleted scene from near the end of (the new and improved!) Wedding is Destiny and Hanging Likewise, taken out for being too implausibly fluffy. Contains background Kitty/MOC/MOC.
And to think it started out as a little 500 word bit of crack to test out the Ao3 beta. Thanks as always to hl for helping me get this far.
So I've decided to try listing out my triggers, in hopes that putting them in the context of a large and frequently contradictory list makes it clearer that I'm not necesarily making a moral statement etc, and so I have something to link to when I'm feeling too freaked out to explain things. Some of these things I do have an ethical/moral objection to, but my emotional reaction is totally out of proportion, and there are other things I have zero objection to as long as I can avoid them personally.
I am not up for arguing about any of these (and it's not like you can convince me not to be triggered! That's not how triggers work!), but I can possibly offer clarification.
WARNING: Contains a whole bunch of common triggers!
( All the triggers, ALL OF THEM )
Diabolik Lovers (ep 1): So since I'm making a dating sim about vampires it made sense to watch the anime adaptation of the Dating Sim About Vampires. But as expected it was really not my thing: it's all creepy vampire dudes stockholm syndroming the sweet protagonist. At one point a sexy evil lady vampire showed up briefly but I looked up spoilers and that plot does not go anywhere I'd enjoy. Still, it was interesting as research, and now I'll know more context when people talk about it.
Monument Valley: fantastic, beautiful, understated little phone puzzle game. You are a little girl wandering minimalist fantasy landscapes with Escher-esque topology that uses forced perspective in very creative ways. I found it fairly easy, there are a few minor timing puzzles I didn't always like. It reminded me a lot of Journey.
Descent (Dragon Age Inquisition DLC): really not worth $25, but otherwise moderately entertaining Deep Roads story. Focused very much on two not very interesting DLC-only NPCs with basically no other background characters and nothing for the companions to say or do. Some mildly interesting environments and dwarf related worldbuilding, but the (level adjusted) fights were difficult and dragged on and on, making the fun bits feel stretched out. Sidequests were dull as dishwater.
Cute Demon Crashers: Cute free sex positive dating (well, friends with benefits) sim. A college girl gets to know 3 incubi and a succubus and possibly has sex with one. Strong emphasis on consent and fluffy happiness: you can say no at any time and there are no bad endings. I did the f/f path and it was endearing but a bit too sex focussed for me (which I knew it would be but THE ART WAS TOO CUTE) The demons are all aromantic, it's the fantasy of the perfect calm, knowledgeable, non judgemental older partner with no expectations who wants nothing for themselves but to make you happy. Which is not really my thing (I prefer pining losers haha) but is certainly a contrast to the Diabolik Lovers style love interest.
Dark Parables: Ballad of Rapunzel: Servicable continuation of this series of fairy tale themed hidden object games.
Love Chronicles: Salvation: really quite terrible hidden object game. I didn't mind the previous games in the series but this is set in a demon underworld and is just ugly and unpleasant, and the puzzles aren't much fun.
Unexpected science festival in the city! I GOT TO HUG A CHICKEN.
Tasty food I could eat at a wheelchair accessible place I'd never been before, and another place discovered to try later!(*)
The local IGA having frozen cubed pumpkin!
And something people may find interesting: I finally got around to attending a Perth Science Fiction Fans meetup. It was fun! 10-12 people, roughly equal mix of genders, with an average age of about 30 but going up to maybe 60. The conversation tended to be about current mainstream tv shows/The MCU etc but there were some digressions into Asimov and anime etc. Despite the username no Dr Who, Supernatural, or Sherlock was mentioned. Everyone was friendly and welcoming. I only lasted an hour before getting sleepy, I don't know how things progressed after that.
If you subscribe to the group you get all the meeting updates and can just go when it suits you. I've been subscribed for like...a year, but now I know they're fun will probably go again much sooner. Most are at the Dome in Perth, I didn't bother looking at the menu but it's fairly wheelchair accessible.
(*)Today: the Malaysian restaurant PappaRich, next time the Asian dessert place Sweetfix, both on James st in Northbridge near Gelare.
Homestuck: deeply weird and eclectic huge long scifi humour horror interactive musical EXPERIENCE.
Freefall Gently funny and intelligent space opera about created intelligences and societies. Moves amazingly slowly, it's one of the oldest webcomics I know of still going and has covered like...3 days in universe.
Gunnerkrigg Court Bittersweet? Something like that. Fantasy set in a magical school.
Band vs Band Fun bubblegum about girl bands.
Family Man 18th century, university and (were)wolves. Very intelligent but a bit slow.
Girl Genius Steampunk and SCIENCE. Lots of fun.
TJ and Amal Finished roadtrip m/m romance. Really funny and sweet.
Johnny Wander Gag strips and strange, funny little stories.
Questionable Content Kind of like Friends but with more robots.
Something Positive cynically funny slice of life with a kind heart deep, deep down.
XKCD funny stick figure comics about science and life (hey someone might not have heard of it)
Chaos Life Funny gag comics, often slice of life.
Desden Codak Weird, beautifully drawn but confusing transhumanistish science fantasy.
All tend to have female main characters or a mixed-gender ensemble cast, and have a high possibility of canonical queerness and/or robots. I'm also still subscribed to Megatokyo but I don't actually read it, I just go "hey! it updated!" the way one enjoys a shooting star.
Borderlands: Fun, cool first person shooter set in a post apocalyptic/wild west-ish planet. I've played like half an hour but it was fun and I wasn't totally bad at it! You choose one of four pre-generated characters: a white woman, a black dude, and two white dudes.
Remnants of Isolation: A cute rpg by someone I know, about people escaping a prison for magic users. Again, haven't played for long but it was cute and interesting with a diverse cast.
And for both I need to find out if you can grind to make the game arbitrarily easy, cos then I'll be safe from getting stuck and not seeing the end. Once I know that I'll feel more motivated to trek all the way to the windows machine to play them :)
Genshiken (first two omnibuses): A slice of life comedy about a university club of anime/manga nerds who are all into porny doujinshi. Starts off very male dominated, ends up with more and more female yaoi fans. Fairly funny and charming and not as skeezy as it sounds, reminds me of both unisfa and fanfic fandom. Can be a bit...well, the author obviously respects his female characters, but it's written by, for, and about moderately conventional Japanese male nerds, talking a lot about sex. Also one of the characters cosplays as Hitler in a character title image WHY WHAT.
Snow White of the Red Hair (first 4 episodes): well made, fluffy, fairytale-ish wish fulfillment about a Miyazaki-esque feisty, hard working, sweet natured girl with unique red hair who overcomes adversity to strike her own path. Adversity seems to often take the form of dudes who are struck by her beauty but don't respect her agency, and she's usually rescued by her male friend who is clearly secretly in love with her but not saying anything because he respects her desire for freedom. In the first two episodes there's threats of being forced to be a concubine, but it's free of explicit sexualised violence or creepiness.
A Season for Scandal by Theresa Romain: This is an arranged marriage regency romance which was mostly quite enjoyable but occasionally so annoying I had to give up. Spoilers for why below the cut:( spoilers for A Season for Scandal )
Before I forget: my wheelchair kept refusing to turn every now and then, turned out some of the ball bearings had fallen out.
Other than that I have mostly been resting up for my colonoscopy on Tuesday. Urrgghhhh am looking forward to that being over! Have cooked up a large amount of chicken broth, and am going to make some jelly tomorrow.
I have had a total of ONE PERSON give me feedback on SOON, and that was Alice who is (a)my Copper Rose cowriter and (b)beta-ed the game in the first place. DID IT AT LEAST WORK IN LINUX, PEOPLE. YOU DON'T HAVE TO ACTUALLY PLAY IT TO THE END.
Being disabled has vastly cut down on my ability to do a lot of stuff, emotional labour included. I found presents increasingly stressful so just stopped doing them. Most of my friendships have gotten more distant and I don't see my family as much. But looking back I've always felt really guilty at being bad at certain kinds of emotional labour(*), I'm this weird mix of extrovert and...socially anxious or something (I've intermittently suspected myself of being on the autism spectrum) I tend to feel like it should just be ~natural and spontaneous~ and worthwhile in it's own right. I should just want to spend time with people because I am good and caring, and wanting to spend time with them means I will want to do the things that leads to it: sending cards and presents, making phone calls etc. And most of the time I don't want to do those things, I find them stressful and difficult and often unrewarding, even when in the long run I really like the person and enjoy their company. And I feel bad about that, and that bad feeling just makes everything more fraught.
But thinking of it as work is helpful. A friendly interaction doesn't have to be fun in it's own right, it's ok to think of it in cold/meta "I have not spoken to X person in a while, and I like them, I should maintain the friendship, what is the most efficient way to do that?" terms.
So I sent out short friendly texts to a few people I wish to better maintain friendships with! And it did make me happy, but it also made me stressed, so in and of itself I'm not sure it was a net positive experience. But two of them replied and we organised to hang out/skype and that made me (and hopefully them!) very happy. Hmm!
I'm finding it useful when approaching my inbox too. Like a lot of people I get overwhelmed by guilt about neglected correspondence, and thinking about replies in terms of what I want to achieve with them is making them less scary, especially when I remind myself that replying at all sends a positive message. But that it's ok to not reply sometimes, because it's work and I only have limited energy.
(the post has also got me thinking about the same gender related issues everyone else has been talking about, but I have nothing new to add there)
(*)I'm really good at other kinds, in that typical female-socialised way. And of course I'm sure that same socialisation is a big part of why I feel defective for not being good at other kinds.
Luckily the plan is to paint over everything like I did with the SOON backgrounds so it doesn't have to be pretty, just roughly the right colour and shape.
(*)And in that vein, am appreciating this course.
So! For the last few years I've been selling art, shirts, stickers, and cards at redbubble. I make very little money off this (about $20 a year, looking at my receipts), but I also put in very little effort. In general, I've found it a pretty positive experience just challenging myself to try and be at least semi professional, making polished designs I think people will like and then having people like them. I sold a lot more when I was adding works to groups, commenting on other people's art, and promoting things on social media. This is probably necessary wherever you go.
And now, all the options I know of, and what little I know of them. I have only used redbubble.
These all sell clothes, prints, cards, and homewares with original designs:
- redbubble The objects are fairly expensive even if you only add a small profit margin, but they're of reasonably high quality and the site is inviting for purchasers. The only criticism of redbubble I know of is that one time they refused to ban some offensive shirts, though I think they backpeddled after enough complaints. Also the shirt colours come out muted.
- Society 6 Very similar to redbubble as far as I can tell.
- Cafepress A bit cheaper/tackier, wide range of options, very easy to get started. You used to have to make a separate shop per design but I'm not sure you do any more.
- Zazzle similar to cafepress, apparently better quality.
- Threadless Send in tshirt designs, they get voted on and if you win you get a set payout of a thousand dollars or so.
- Teefury Send in tshirt designs, make $1 per shirt for 24 hours and keep your copyright.
- Spoonflower: sell fabric, gift paper, and wallpaper with repeating designs.
If you google "cafepress redbubble society 6" you get a bunch of people comparing them and suggesting several other sites I'd never heard of, as well as suggestions on how to use them best. I found How to Make Money with Zazzle Redbubble and Cafepress interesting. Apparently I make double the average of $10 per year /o\
Finally: while you're here, check out my redbubble follows and buy some of my friends' stuff ;) (though I'm not friends with tanaudel I just think she's cool)
Fandom: Original Work
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: Major Character Death
Additional Tags: Visual Novel, Canon - Original Game, Interactive, Games, Genderless, Choose Your Own Ending, choose your own gender, Humor, Science Fiction, Australia, Perth, Time Travel, Mad Scientists, Science, POV Character of Color, Disabled Character of Color, Canon Disabled Character
That Dr Fang thinks she's so special just because she solved global warming and never blew up any of Switzerland. But now you have a time machine and soon, soon they will ALL PAY.
A humourous visual novel. Choose your own gender, choose your own ending, choose your own path to GLORY! (or death. But hopefully glory)
Now in version 2.0 with SOUND and PRETTY PICTURES. There's also a text based Twine version.
I've posted some backgrounds and a tutorial to my tumblr. Feedback/bug reports would be fantastic. Anyone with a Linux machine who could just test that it runs and what the icon looks like would be greatly appreciated.
And now the THREE non Dragon Age arts I have drawn in the last six months, two for exchanges.
( Addicted to You, Original, Puella Magi Madoka Magica )