rthstewart: (Default)
Friday, July 21st, 2017 10:40 pm
A placeholder for the sign up I hope I don't regret given what else must be written in the month of August. (Phew, got a first draft of something due end of August done so on Tuesday I can sit with a committee of 20 and have them shred it to pieces!  GO ME)

So I signed up, there's a link on my NFE entry, and here's a few more things, mostly copy and pasted from previous NFEs.

First, thanks so much!  Despite the character-centric match up, the fact is, I’m pretty agnostic as to characters for the NFE. Whatever we've been matched on, don't worry because I like just about anything and what I don't like has to do with tone and characterization, not particular characters.   I've pretty consistently requested adults but I also like adults in children's bodies -- in other words, they can be  young in appearance but old in terms of years lived, wisdom and experience.  From my previous prompts, you can glean the following, and I'm surprised at how little they've changed

What I love:
  • UST; witty banter and snark; Politics, finance or military strategy; World War 2; Worldbuilding; Gap-filling; Culture clash (within Narnia or Narnia vs. Spare Oom); healthy, normal, romantic relationship between consenting adults (canon pairing or OC); someone being extraordinarily clever and getting out of a jam; any Narnian (Pevensie or otherwise) observed from a third person point of view; anything sly, wry, and silly; rapid fire dialogue; a delightful sense of the absurd
  • A happy ending, delightful characterization, and to laugh at least once
  • Pagan and/or mythological influences;
  • Adults and old souls in young bodies;
  • A Narnia with creaky wheels, the faint smell of manure, grass stains, open windows, and lots of animal hair that everyone is too polite to comment upon
  • I prefer humor over angst and sex over violence.
  • Cross-overs! 
  •  AU and canon divergence is great too.  A Golden Age > 15 years, so, therefore I'd love an AU look with adult Pevensies, OC consorts, and the next gen.  Similarly, I’d love a Spare Oom AU with a happily ever after and no train crash
  • I'm more interested in periods other than the Telmarine era onward and really I'd be very happy if you just ignore TLB completely.

 What I definitely don't want in my fic: it's a short list but pretty strongly held:  explicit m/m (everything else is OK); excessive angst, gore or violence; any dub-con whatsoever (Rilian & Lady of the Green Kirtle (OK); Susan written as "Fallen Away From Narnia because of Lipstick and Nylons"; Lucy sidelined or being protected by her overbearing big brothers and worry-wart sister.  I have a strong preference for humor over angst and romance/sex rather than violence.

I've got a big body of Narnia work and some people like to play in it.  If that's something that you are interested in, you don't need my permission! 
rthstewart: (Default)
Friday, July 3rd, 2015 07:07 pm
So, I've been traveling and completely forgot to signal boost the Narnia Fic Exchange.  Sign ups close on Sunday and there are also sign ups for betas and pinch hitters.  It's awesome.  [personal profile] snacky  and [personal profile] aurilly are running it and you should really go play.
Sign ups are here and here on AO3.
Beta offers are here
Pinch hit offers are here

And I guess remix reveals are this weekend.  I mentioned I had 2 stories.  Been a bit of a bust, I guess, but if you can guess which ones I did, I'll write something!

Also, I visited the Joggins Fossil Cliffs and admit to rediscovering some inspiration from the great scientists who also found inspiration there.  So, I may try to pull something about that.  I'm not at all accustomed to walking a rocky shoreline and picking up fossils on the beach.  It was really amazing. (Just trying to figure out who would have gone there in TSG-verse?  Richard Russell?  With Polly?  With Mary?  Eustace? so many possibilities? in verse or AU verse?)  pay this no mind, move along, nothing to see here.  yet.

rthstewart: (Default)
Sunday, April 26th, 2015 03:12 pm
After receiving two really sweet comments, one for AW and one for Rat and Sword, I decided to thank the readers with an AW blurb that I posted in comments on AO3. I'd wanted to get a new chapter up this month but that's not going to happen, I think, given how busy work and other things are keeping me. But I did start writing, and I'm counting that as a win, even though this is far in advance and won't actually appear for awhile.  It also shows a big point/reveal that's been part of the story for a really long time. By the time I get there, this will undoubtedly change, but the afternmath of John Pevensie accompanying Edmund and Peter for a round of drinks at a pub after Peter's made a tough, rotten decision, has been part of the story from the very beginning.

approx 2000 words
from Apostolic Way to come (which will probably be under another name)
It's 1948, give or take


If you aren't interested in a vision of the future, move along, nothing to see here )
rthstewart: (Default)
Monday, October 1st, 2012 09:39 am
It is BANNED BOOKS WEEK!  go forth and be subversive!

Over the past couple of days, I have noticed an uptick in kudos over on AO3 and to a lesser extent, a number of anon and guest reviews on fanfiction.net.  So, if, after reading, you pop over here, welcome and hello and thanks so much!  If you are new and did find this and are so inclined, I'd love to know how you found me.  Is there some recent post, or a stray comment somewhere that sent you into the wallow and bottomless pit that is my rambling?  Anon commenting is enabled here so drop a line if you want to and introduce yourself if you like.

I know there's one recent rec in comments to a Susan story courtesy of therck (and thank you!).  To that end, if you have not seen it, ursulav  wrote an amazing problem of Susan story, Elegant and Fine, It is wonderful so do go check it out.  [livejournal.com profile] wellinghall also mentioned Ursula's story in comments an entry or two ago here, so now I am reccing it properly!

I had wondered if the uptick over on AO3 is due to a Tumblr post a new reader told me about which warned people away from my work.**  The reader looked at the stories that were recc'd, decided they were not her favorite flavor of delicious cake and decided to check out those who were condemned, meaning me, for which I am so grateful!  Huzzah for new, cool imaginary friends! So, I wondered if others might have seen the same post and come via the same circuitous route!? 

**(This isn't new.  Would-be readers have been warned away from me for years, I'm way too old for this nonsense and wasted too much hand-wringing energy on it (and yours as well gentle reader).  I like playing over here in my sandbox with my cool, imaginary friends and our yummy snacks and the teens in my life think it's hilarious.  They call me a hippie.  (yes, I hope you didn't just snort Diet Coke through the laptop at that prospect)  So, I'm not reopening that can of slimy worm bits, but was wondering if others have come via the same route.  In which case, maybe I should thank my critic, yes? 

Last, work on the final chapter of this part of the H&M story arc proceeds.  I thought it might go up this weekend, but it's  not.  Soon!  And an event that I sought to avoid last year, I have decided to embrace this year.  So, bring it on. 
rthstewart: (Default)
Wednesday, June 20th, 2012 07:15 am
Narnia Fic Exchange sign ups close today!  Go! Sign up! 

 I have a HUGE THING this week on Friday.   If nothing else, at my age, I should have the right to respond to people, "I refuse to do things that you think are 'good for me' as that always means 'convenient for you' and 'very unpleasant for me.'"  I think I'll bring snacks.  Just because you teaching 50 adult professionals doesn't mean they don't like snacks the same way 8 year olds do.  How can you go wrong with candy bars?

In which I have 3,000 words that basically follow this pattern )
rthstewart: (Default)
Saturday, June 16th, 2012 01:44 pm
I've signed up for the Narnia Fic Exchange!  Have you?  Do sign up!  It's fun!
We had a great time getting caught up on the NFFR chat last night too!

And, I had the most wonderful, the most thoughtful email this morning from long time reader Ruan Chun Xian who said she was playing dress up with virtual dolls and ended up creating Lucy and Susan as Disney princesses (Ruan was annoyed because she couldn't find trousers for Lucy!!) and then she went further and DID MORGAN OF LINCH AND ANGLO-CARIBBEAN JILL POLE! 

So you can see Susan, Lucy, Jill and Aravis here on her Tumblr. She pointed out that Susan looks a bit like Snow White except that Susan DOES/WOULD look like Snow White.  And below are all the ladies together plus Morgan.  (I LOVE Morgan's boots and her long braid and her plain green working gown).

Yes, I know, dread visuals but they are so lovely and I'm so grateful!!!  Thank you!!

short plea regarding H&M )
rthstewart: (Feminazi)
Saturday, April 14th, 2012 09:49 am
The Narnia Big Bang is in full swing and you should go check it out!

We have the creepy gothic circa regna tonat by [livejournal.com profile] deathsblood
And the delightful caper,The Red Leather Trousers Escapade (1/17) by [livejournal.com profile] wingedflight21 (Eustace, Jill, pineapples, and a mongoose who thinks he's a squirrel)
And To Every Thing There Is a Season by [livejournal.com profile] edenfalling (which I am going to read now read last night and it's fabulous)
 [livejournal.com profile] snacky also has a poll up.

There is also wonderful art up for the stories by [livejournal.com profile] heverus, [livejournal.com profile] i_autumnheart, [livejournal.com profile] caitriona_3 and [livejournal.com profile] sophiap

My thanks to the folks on AO3, guest(s), mattador and Samizdat, for the kudos.  (Given that Samizdat is the name of one of my favorite Star Wars fics from the 90s by Shura4, I really did a double-take when I saw that handle).

I was going to put this behind a deep (new LJ! scissors) cut that was all navel-gazing about how as of Friday after 29 years, I am no longer swimming in the Tiber, but have pulled myself out of that river and decided to cross the Thames.  I mention this only as I know a lot of you have been down this road (and swum this river), and so probably understand the general vibe of anger and regret.

AW in progress )
rthstewart: (Default)
Friday, April 6th, 2012 09:46 pm
I spotted this on io9 when I was in Rome (who got it from Tiny Letter who in turn got it from C.S. Lewis' Letters to Children).  I wanted to reprint it here, as it is just lovely.  Lewis is writing to an American fan named Joan Lancaster in June of 1956 about the craft of writing.  I infer from it that Joan must have included  a picture of herself and her cat, named Aslan.

The Kilns,
Headington Quarry,
26 June 1956

Dear Joan–

Thanks for your letter of the 3rd. You describe your Wonderful Night v. well. That is, you describe the place and the people and the night and the feeling of it all, very well — but not the thing itself — the setting but not the jewel. And no wonder! Wordsworth often does just the same. His Prelude (you're bound to read it about 10 years hence. Don't try it now, or you'll only spoil it for later reading) is full of moments in which everything except the thing itself is described. If you become a writer you'll be trying to describe the thing all your life: and lucky if, out of dozens of books, one or two sentences, just for a moment, come near to getting it across.

About amn't I, aren't I and am I not, of course there are no right or wrong answers about language in the sense in which there are right and wrong answers in Arithmetic. "Good English" is whatever educated people talk; so that what is good in one place or time would not be so in another. Amn't I was good 50 years ago in the North of Ireland where I was brought up, but bad in Southern England. Aren't I would have been hideously bad in Ireland but very good in England. And of course I just don't know which (if either) is good in modern Florida. Don't take any notice of teachers and textbooks in such matters. Nor of logic. It is good to say "more than one passenger was hurt," although more than one equals at least two and therefore logically the verb ought to be plural were not singular was!

What really matters is:–

1. Always try to use the language so as to make quite clear what you mean and make sure your sentence couldn't mean anything else.

2. Always prefer the plain direct word to the long, vague one. Don't implement promises, but keep them.

3. Never use abstract nouns when concrete ones will do. If you mean "More people died" don't say "Mortality rose."

4. In writing. Don't use adjectives which merely tell us how you want us to feel about the thing you are describing. I mean, instead of telling us a thing was "terrible," describe it so that we'll be terrified. Don't say it was "delightful"; make us say "delightful" when we've read the description. You see, all those words (horrifying, wonderful, hideous, exquisite) are only like saying to your readers, "Please will you do my job for me."

5. Don't use words too big for the subject. Don't say "infinitely" when you mean "very"; otherwise you'll have no word left when you want to talk about something really infinite.

Thanks for the photos. You and Aslan both look v. well. I hope you'll like your new home.

With love
C.S. Lewis

I really want to editorialize, but shall not.  The thing speaks for itself and more eloquently than I ever could.

In other news, we're back, having lost one electronic device in our mad dash across French airports, but now safe, sound, and jet lagged.  There was something oddly surreal about standing in the meat department of the local grocery store looking at ALL THOSE CHOICES and thinking that 24 hours ago, I was in Rome. 

Ciao!  And in an inside joke for [livejournal.com profile] econopodder and [livejournal.com profile] knitress "Happy Cat Sacrifice Day!"  For all others, enjoy your holiday of choice or none at all.  It is a joyous and lovely weekend.  Remixes should be posted soon, Big Bang starts on Sunday (thanks [livejournal.com profile] snacky !!!) and I really wanted to get an AW update up before then.  We'll see.
rthstewart: (Default)
Thursday, March 22nd, 2012 08:57 am
[livejournal.com profile] autumnia continues the thankless task and yeoman's effort of the never-ending edits and beta for the Narnia Big Bang, now at 55,500 words, plus introduction, glossary, cast of characters, and notes.   In our most recent exchange, we were trying to remember what, over the last 3 years and so many words, should be mentioned in Rat and Sword, Susan and Peter, going to war. We came up with the following:

  • The fate of Captain David Lowrey after the Dieppe Raid
  • The knife Asim loaned to Peter on the Oxford train platform
  • The Hierophant

Is there anything else you can think of? If so, drop a line!  At my age, memory is not what it was.

It's funny to post this as the first 3 chapters of TSG Part 1 went up 3 years ago today. Chapter 1 got one review, from [livejournal.com profile] ilysia_039. By chapter 3, I'd picked up [livejournal.com profile] autumnia, miniver and Doewe. Sniff. It makes me all mushy and sentimental and ever so grateful.
  • Chapter 1 - Digs, In which Digory receives an Alarming Invitation
  • Chapter 2 –Tetchy, In which there are Alarming Introductions and Peter mistakenly mentions King Kong
  • Chapter 3 -Tea and Sympathy, In which Peter starts an argument about camels and there is Inappropriate Conversation
rthstewart: (Default)
Sunday, March 4th, 2012 06:34 pm
I have, finally, a complete draft of the NBB.  Now it is time to edit, with the wonderful help of [livejournal.com profile] autumnia who has patiently endured my early draft, complete with misspellings and typos.  Amine_eyes was going to help too and I'm just so lucky to have such great support.  (I've been through a real bout of the OMG IT SUX recently.  [livejournal.com profile] autumnia has kept me from chucking it all into the river).  It needs work, but it is getting there.  I am so fortunate and absolutely giddy with the prospect that [livejournal.com profile] heverus will be doing the art!!

There have been distractions, some good ([livejournal.com profile] cyndisuesue visited unexpectedly and this was divine!) and others not so good, especially some very serious illness among several in my village.  Also the state of the US political dialogue has been especially grim and I find myself in a perpetual state of grimace, and I'm not sure that following the Think Progress tweet feed has been good for my blood pressure. 

Also, today, I timed the distance it takes for an egg to fall with parachutes of varying sizes for my teen's science project.  We did this about 20 times and happily the egg broke on the last round, thereby proving up the hypothesis that even a small parachute is better than no parachute.  Words to live by, yes?

Which come to think, is a bit of a metaphor for the NBB.  I keep thinking that, gosh, I've not done anything but the NBB for months.  Except that NBB author sign ups were on October 23 and since then, I posted chapters 10-14 of Apostolic Way and the recent chapter of Harold & Morgan and just wrote the NBB from scratch.  Never tell me the word count, but I'm sure that's over 100,000 words since October 30.  So... yeah...

I read the Hunger Games and really enjoyed it.  I know the basics of the whole story and we are all now eagerly awaiting the release of the film which so far seems terrific.  Yeah, I know, trailers, but still, I am enjoying what I see.

Some true delights come from [livejournal.com profile] adaese and [livejournal.com profile] wellinghall who have provided pictures of the Cat Window at the Oxford Museum of Natural History and a link to a page of Sir Gwaine and the Green Knight on display at the Bodleian Library at Oxford.  This was C.S. Lewis' own edition, with his own annotations, and edited by JRR Tolkien and EV Gordon.  So, I shall share the pretty pictures and they are in my Scrapbook.


I have been watching Once Upon A Time, but if they don't get make it less monochromatic fast, I may drop it in disgust.  I am getting really fed up with the default to the Disney-ification at every turn.  Disney cast members in the parks and the adveritising on the show are more diverse than the show itself. 

With more of my RL and Old Fandom Friends migrating over to this account, once I came clean with them about this latest fandom obsession focus I think I might start posting the occasionally personal over here, which means F-locking.  I mention this only because some people I hear from pretty regularly don't have LJ.  It's not that my RL is so very interesting, but just a head's up.

rthstewart: (Default)
Saturday, February 25th, 2012 09:13 pm
So, it's errrr, almost there.  We have to submit a summary of our Big Bang story and 85% completed rough draft tonight and I just submitted the following:
  • Introduction, Glossary, Cast of Characters, Maps [about 50% complete, 1787 words]
  • Chapter 1, D-Day Minus 16 Months To D-Day Minus 1 Year [complete draft, 5988 words]
  • Chapter 2, D-Day Minus 11 Months To D-Day Minus 7 Months [complete draft, 8133 words]
  • Chapter 3, D-Day Minus 7 Months To D-Day Minus 6 Months [complete draft, 8243 words]
  • Chapter 4, D-Day Minus 2 Months [complete draft, 8243 words]
  • Chapter 5, D-Day Minus One Month To D-Day Minus One Day [complete draft, 7883 words]
  • Chapter 6, D-Day  [about 5400 of maybe 10,000 words complete]

I realized that I consistently screwed up my east and west.  I feel like more than a beta, I need a proof of concept.  Should this be buried to never see the light of day?  Darned if I know.    I don't like writing so blind. 

Here!  Have something WAY FAR OUT THERE:

I really didn't mean to do this and it's very, very short )
Also, while I am learning who is uploading user pics, my LJ notifications of new postings are still not working so if you've posted and I've not said anything, it's because I don't know you are out there.

That's about it.  Writing writing writing.  How are you all doing?  
rthstewart: (Default)
Tuesday, February 21st, 2012 07:57 pm

So, let’s see…

Big Bang is at 41,000 words (including a glossary and cast of characters so that you can keep track of how a Sten is different from a Bren).  I’m guessing maybe 10,000 words left?  Granted, that's a BIG bit to do in a week for a rough draft but I actually have a pretty coherent outline and as I’m following an order of battle, it’s not, as things go, a huge challenge.  So I say now.  Gawd.  A war story.  I'm such an idiot.

I’m assuming that the H&M update got hit by ff.net being down or something -- possibly something.  Thanks so much to those who did persevere against the site problems and comment!  In less chipper news, I have been called out in two separate things on ff.net for harassment and flaming.  I responded to one and didn’t bother with the other.  My thanks to those who have assisted/weighed in/provided moral support.

A burning question.  Why is my world not full of the new Upstairs Downstairs and the promised relationship between Alex Kingston/Emilia Fox  aka River Song/Morgause?  Why?  Why?  Where is the fic?  Where are the gifs?  WHERE WHERE?  Show me NOW.  Cross over madness I tell you.  This is the sort of thing that drives me to the sort of infringing conduct that is not age appropriate.

[livejournal.com profile] intrikate88 has been doing some terrific Once Upon A Time Fic  exploring Belle and Rumpelstiltskin so do check that out.

Which brings me to the related issue that I have finally seen Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.  It was a typical and very grown up sort of thing – a late matinee with Important People in the audience and no one under the age of 30.   I dearly love Le Carre’s book and it and Conant’s The Irregulars inspired a lot of TQSiT and my TSG AU.  I enjoyed the film and Oldman plays a very, very cold Smiley.  It’s a good adaptation in a 2 hour film.  The challenge is that so much of Smiley is internal and he reveals practically nothing to others.  That can get dull in film.  Le Carre is not great with his women characters and the film I thought provided a critique of that – we never see Lady Ann’s face.  She could be anyone.

It seemed every respected British male actor working was in the film, except maybe Alan Rickman and Jim Broadbent.  So the eye candy was excellent.

Some spoilers – if you don’t know who the mole is, you might not want to read.

Spoilers for Tinker Tailor beneath the cut, poor loves )

rthstewart: (Default)
Thursday, February 9th, 2012 09:42 am
Anons and others, thank you for the kudos over on A03! CKate, if you keep reading Harold and Morgan, you will finally see Tumnus make an appearance. Also, he’s in The Horse and Her Girl. Tumnus and Peridan can’t stand each other. It’s a total bromance and probably romantic. And thank you [livejournal.com profile] blithers for the rec in [livejournal.com profile] het_reccers

So, let’s see. With the sort of merging of old fandom friends and new fandom friends, I’m not sure any more where I should bitch about my brother and sister in law and the never ending power struggle involving the bitch beach house that has now roiled over into a school fundraising activity  involving pencils and erasers. So many lawyers in the family is so very much not a good thing (there are 5?  6?   plus Grandma likes to sue without a lawyer because she doesn’t think she needs one) especially when coupled with a cultural proclivity toward rigidity and argument and a habit of carrying out warfare via email.  The good thing about the last three years in this fandom was that I was able to quote back to a worried teacher who’d received an email bomb from my BIL about the pencils and erasers, “No really, it’s him, not you.” Or to quote my newly minted teen, “Haters are gonna hate, mom.”

Which brings me to pound cake and porn. The porn challenge is underway and so here is the signal boost and the note that as [livejournal.com profile] vialethe pointed out there is a real lack of Narnia porn thus far. I keep wanting to do something with Cor and Aravis but I’ve found myself really reluctant to write them after the wonderful work of [livejournal.com profile] edenfalling which isn’t porn or pound cake but still highly sensual and has become complete head canon for me. And hey, I wrote Caspian and Peter (sort of) for [livejournal.com profile] snacky! And that whole paragraph of the Revel in I love not man the less! And Maenad!  And before that, other things.  Really!  Been there, done that, got the t-shirt and burned the negatives. 

Which brings me next to the fact that yeah, the lovely anons notwithstanding, I continue to get hit, and in particular took one to the teeth recently. I have written a response which I have not posted, going back to my teen’s sage advice. Still, it rankles to stay silent when I'm instructed that fandom has changed since I entered it in the 1970s so I should just get with the program.  Really, I can act my ancient age (unless it involves beach house selection with my in laws).

[livejournal.com profile] snitchnipped is proposing a big bang write in for Friday night so if you are interested, contact her but I think the timing is 9 PM ET. We’ll hang on Skype or in a chat room somewhere and motivate each other to sit down and write.

To that end, I somehow have managed to develop over 16,000 words of Harold and Morgan, Part 3, none of it postable.  I keep thinking that I can write both the Big Bang and a Two Hearts Day piece for H&M at the same time and I'm not being real successful at it. 

blather in which Morgan engages in evasive tactics and massive rationalization )

rthstewart: (Default)
Sunday, January 22nd, 2012 05:53 pm
BBC reported this awesome finding regarding great bowerbirds and that males use the concept of forced perspective (think of those scenes with Gandalf and hobbits in LOTR) to make themselves appear larger to prospective mates.  The birds studied here are different from the satin bowerbirds in TSG Part 1 who use bits of blue to decorate their bowers for wooing.

Also, festivids has gone live and omg what a delightful time suck, including an awesome video of Maru the cat (yes, Maru has his own fandom now).  Though if the octopus that stole the camera can have his own Yuletide fic, why not, right?

Work on Big Bang proceeds ever so slowly though I finally broke 20,000.  I'm swimming in background material and leave a trail of World War 2 texts in my wake.   I've been in a funk and have considered and rejected overly dramatic expressions. 

Two things, so help me F-list, you are my only hope.  First, I need original poetry, such as what, theoretically, Wing Commander Tebbitt might write to Susan.  I've commissioned the Susan/Tebbitt shippers LARM and Metonomia, but if you are interested in contributing, I could use it. 

As inspiration, this poem was written by SOE codemaster Leo Marks for spy Violette Szabo who was killed at the Ravensbrück concentration camp:

The life that I have is all that I have
And the life that I have is yours.
The love that I have of the life that I have
Is yours and yours and yours.

A sleep I shall have
A rest I shall have,
Yet death will be but a pause,
For the peace of my years in the long green grass
Will be yours and yours and yours.

Second, what do you when writing a point of view character and how he or she refers to himself or herself?  I've stumbled over this before with certain characters.  I don't have a problem with any of the canon characters and most of my OCs.  However, with both Tebbitt and with Col. Walker Smythe, I have difficulty with them thinking of themselves by their first names.  For example, from Walker-Smythe's pov:

 He summoned Major al-Masri from Bletchley Park and the man arrived so promptly, George concluded the impatience to meet was mutual.  He’d sent Tebbitt off to Thame Park for a refresher in wireless training and that would keep him occupied for a week – two if the latest agents there for training were attractive, which they invariably were.  He did have to wonder if striking looks and trim figure where on the intake sheets Selwyn Jepson used when interviewing female candidates for insertion into France.

Instead of "he," could/should it be George?  Or Walker-Smythe?  Same thing with Tebbitt:

Tebbitt knew the origins of Jean-Louise.  The Shoemaker, the master forger at the British Embassy in Washington, had gifted her with two beautiful sets of shoes – fake identities.  She had lived one of them, assuming the identity of Mrs. Susan Caspian, for the last year.  The other she would trot out and take for a spin occasionally and so he’d come to know Mrs. Jane Louise Ellis pretty well.  Mrs. Ellis was from Leeds, younger than Mrs. Caspian, and her dress – usually red –cut low.  She was a flirt and looked smashing on a man’s arm.    Jane Louise Ellis had become Jean-Louise Lambert.

Where the surname Lambert had come from, he didn’t know, but as Colonel Walker-Smythe was fond of saying, the Queen of Pentacles that was Mrs. Susan Caspian knew how to keep her own counsel.

If not "he," should it be "Tebbitt"  or "Reg?"  This has really stumped me.

Last there has been an update in the vanity project, Girl Falls Into rth-verse Narnia story that greaves is undertaking and she had Jalur make a wonderful, wry appearance here.

rthstewart: (Default)
Friday, January 13th, 2012 09:29 am
I had to google fu More Joy Day. Admittedly, I’m not feeling terribly joyous the last two days due to some badness and woe – one of those situations with a close family friend about your own age going into the hospital for a backache and coming out a day later with a dire prognosis. WTF? So, I’ll just get that out there and move on.

After 2 plus years of hiding rthstewart from the Old Fandom Friends, I’ve now come clean, more or less, and so some of them are now over here. So, Old Fandom Friends meet New Fandom Friends. Fanfiction has been my social network for a very, very long time.

We’ve all had some fun watching this Ur Doing It Wrong unfold (also here and here) and if you want to read more, PM [livejournal.com profile] lady_songsmith about it who has done a wonderful job dissecting the Ur Doing It Wrong advocates.  (I very much want to buy Sasper and NotAFan a drink.  Step up to the bar, ladies, whoever you are).  We went through some of this earlier over here with the “fic slayer” Anaprate which turned into a lovely discussion here about textual analysis, communities, and canonicity.

It does make me a little sad and wistful as I have noticed that some folks who have been long time readers, have apparently finally abandoned the stories and jumped on board with the above. I suspect that, to their mind, I finally went where they just could not follow, first with the NFE, and then when I tried to recognize what the data show about the social impact of the war on women with Helen and her guilty relationship with the widow Beatrice next door. I get where the objections come from and I regret that we seem to have parted company as I do really value the associations that have developed over the course of the last few years.

Something interesting from the last chapter is the reader split on whether the “children” would perceive the relationship.  They are all adult and sophisticated.  Susan sees something and dismisses it -- essentially concluding, "I know what that looks like but of course it's just my imagination.  My mother would never do anything like that."   I’d written several versions of the scene in the kitchen with Susan and her mother and in some Susan did recognize it.  Readers definitely went both ways on the issue.

Last, there’s been (again) a lot stuff about poor Mary Sue. Geek trendsetter Felicia Day recently Tweeted that more than “meh” she was coming to hate the term Mary Sue, which led to the often posted link to the discussion of why Mary Sue was sexist. My favorite exploration of Sue comes from Pat Pflieger here. It was that article that formed the basis for my own exploration of Sue in the character of Dalia. The article is dated in its fandom references but in the end, Ms. Pfliger comes down solidly in the camp that Mary Sue is an expression of feminine empowerment, and maybe the very first one for a young girl.

Granted I don’t read all those stories on the ff.net page. But that’s not the point. I think of it this way. When I was 10, I used to make sure I always wore sensible shoes to school because, should a portal open and take me to Narnia, I’d be ready. I knew it wasn't real, but if it was real, one does not simply walk into Narnia in sandals (I grew up in So Cal). And you can bet there was a purpose/prophecy in me going there; I didn't think romance at the time but adventure and awesome ninja fighting skills definitely.  By 13, I was certain I had a tragic past and I was totally the 10th member of the Fellowship.   My spousal unit mentions that there’s not a boy (or man) in the world who, alone, shooting hoops or kicking a ball, doesn’t pretend he’s the hero scoring the game-winning point. Every girl out twirling on the ice pretends she’s an Olympic medalist. These are self inserts, the products of our glorious imaginations, and damn it, most of us will never make a living as a basketball player or Olympic skater. The fact that we aren’t great at these endeavors, and might even be really terrible at them, doesn’t matter because it’s the glory of creative pretend play.  So there.  (I've been thinking about this a lot as someone posted the first 1700 words of a girl falls into Narnia using some of rthstewart-verse, so I'm anxiously waiting to see what (if anything) happens next.  Oh vanity but I am curious really to see a modern FOC/Peter set in rth-influenced Golden Age crack Narnia).

Oh and I’m looking for a 1940s Brit speak for insert into the following [assume drunk paratrooper grunts at a pub]

“That trout was plaster-of-paris,” Peter added, laughing at Brotheridge's quote.

The others all stared at him.

“The book? Three Men in a Boat? To say nothing of the dog?”

More blank, glassy looks.

“I’ll just shut it and drink my pint,” Peter said.

Bailey laughed and slapped him across the shoulder blades so hard he nearly upended his beer.  “It’s cuz it’s about boats.  That's how you know it."

“Pevensie don’t know ___ from ___, but he does know boats!” Parr hollered.

rthstewart: (Default)
Thursday, January 5th, 2012 09:06 pm
Thank to those who weighed in on AW 13 and 14 and Happy New Year.  I've now thrown myself into in the Big Bang (oh god, what have I done?  A War story.  WAR, I tell you.  From she who has never fired a gun and flinches from first person shooting games).  Work proceeds.  I'm currently writing about Peter not vomiting.

    Not thirty minutes into the training flight and the deck of the Waco they were trapped in was awash in the vomit of hardened men.  He was, quietly, proud that he’d retched on only four of the twelve training flights.  That was eight better than his CO.  Major Howard had gotten sick every time they went aloft in the Waco.

    For his fortitude, Peter won win twenty schillings and 9 cigarettes in the Company-wide betting pool.

But this lead me to the realization that it was all exposition and so I should write, you know, real time vomiting and why Peter was pretty much inured to the smell of it being accustomed as he was to the stench of giants, wet sheep, and stewing offal meats.  Which meant he had something to fix his gaze on which meant I needed to know what was inside a Waco CG-4 glider.  (Yes, I will explain why everyone is sick in the first place).  15 minutes of google-fu later and I hit the jackpot.
138 years of Popular Science available on line.  For free.  This is from the February 1944 issue.  On page 94 is the article about the gliders. Also on page 104, Daily Workouts Guard Your Health is the 1944 version of softcore porn in a science magazine.  What is cool is that these are the actual scanned magazines so you get the ads and diagrams and it's a wonderful slice of history.  And science!  [edit -- RAWRR it won't let me link to the pages directly so you'll have to go to the table of contents and link to pages 94 and 104 or scroll through it or search "glider" and "workout."]

An hour later, I've been skimming science articles about Darwin from 1894 and a long discussion about kangaroo like dinosaurs  from the 1920s and the history of how mental illness was assumed to be the result of demonic possession.  It's time to shut the browser. 

rthstewart: (Default)
Friday, December 30th, 2011 01:42 pm
Contrary to the notice you might have received, it is not my birthday on January 1.  My birthday (a horrendous, shocking, terrible, giganormous milestone) passed without comment in October.  So, it's been, gone, and I'm older than compost and very much feeling it. 

I've seen an uptick in readers, with guest Kudos for Unquenchable Fire (the Narnia/Temeraire xover) on AO3 (the most popular thing I've written, it turns out) and favs and such for the older stories, particularly By Royal Decree and the seldom read/reviewed/recc'd Palace Guard.  So, should you quiet types come by, thank you!  I greatly appreciate it and I'm always curious how you found the stories and what you thought of them.  I seem to have, on the other hand, lost a number of regular readers, so I do hope it's just the distraction of the holidays and Yuletide. My enormous thanks and gratitude to those who commented on or reviewed the latest updates to AW.  It's the best present ever for me and thank you.

For Anon Reader Tess (in which Ruth gets really tetchy about her BF Tom Clark) )

I've been pushed into hosting part of a New Year's Eve party.  It is supposed to be progressive and reflect the New Year's foods/traditions of the country where it is turning midnight over several hours.  So I snagged the appetizer part, beginning at 7:30 PM, at which point, New Year's will have just passed in the UK.  I am ordering trays of chicken tika, samosas, tandoori, and paneek panir.  We are serving Jamaican and Canadian beer, aged Scotch (from Scotland), Australian Shiraz, South African white wine, and I've got champagne (from France) that I've plastered "Aquitaine" on to.  Har Har. 

Work has begun on the Big Bang.  [livejournal.com profile] amine_eyes has graciously offered to assist with some technical and Brit speak bits but if there are any of you out there with some background in the Brit part of D-Day, military service, common language among the light infantry NCOs, and what not, please drop me a line.  Help.  I need it.    For instance, I was writing something last night and someone poses the questions "Maybe the food would be better?" and I got stumped by whether a light infantry corporal from London, training in 1943 at a base in Bulford would say any of the following in response:  
  • "When pigs fly." [era appropriate] 
  • "When Hell freezes over" [militarily appropriate] or
  • "When [insert football team] wins the Cup."   [I did look it up and Manchester United was very poor in the years leading up the War, so wondered if that would work, for the time]. 

That is all.  Happy New Year.  My sincere and deepest thanks to you all.  I am deeply grateful for this community and for the friendship and support.