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17 May 2006 @ 10:22 pm
Slashy Awards 143: Trivial Fond Records  
I've been writing a lot of mental letters lately. You know the kind - the ones that go:
Dear Mother Nature,

I'm dying and you just keep putting out the pollen. Some of us are suffering here, but do you care? No. Heartless bitch.

Deeply looking forward to the post-modern technological dystopia,
TFV
And:
Dear stomach,

Ow. Also, ow. Also, ew. I'm sorry you've got problems, but do you have to let them affect our relationship like this?

Remember the experience with the chalk-flavored radioactive substances? It can happen again, stomach. It can happen again.

Yours in hopes of a future partnership that's more Ray-and-Fraser than killer-and-knife-named-Betty-Lou,
TFV
And (of course):
Dear Kimberly-Clark,

Not. Stupid. Just. Menstruating.

Periodically yours,
TFV
Naturally, this got me to thinking about documents. And as I have a well-documented kink for the document-within-a-document, well, um, uh...damn. If I could've used 'document' one more time in this intro, I would've gotten an ice-cream cake.

This is how dreams die, people. Ah, well. On to the fan fiction.

The One That Teaches Us All the Importance of Occasionally Not Running for Our Lives or Getting Shot in the Ass. Leave the Light On, by cherryice. Doctor Who, gen. Disclaimer: I was one of the beta-readers of this story, but, seriously, I didn't do much; it was like this when I got there.

See, now, I do not know this fandom. Like, at all. There's a TARDIS, there's a Time Lord, there's a Companion, all this I know from watching my sister watch Doctor Who reruns on some random TV station back in the Dark Ages. (An advantage of Doctor Who fandom: it is, apparently, eternal. A fandom for the ages.) And my attempts to get to know the recent iteration of the fandom are uniformly doomed: downloads fail to download, or fail to extract, or fail to run, and discs disappear into the sandy mists of the postal service, and it's just...it's very doomed, is what it is - like, I suspect the Elder Gods of having an involvement here. So my knowledge is limited (by the forces of EVIL), but I do know that this new Doctor has a wrinkle. A wrinkle named Jack. And, whoa: turns out you don't have to know Jack at all to love his pansexual, uniformed, fifty-first century ass.

And this story is all about Jack, meaning I loved it pretty much from the get-go; in fact, and you'd need to check with cherryice to be sure, I suspect my beta emails were mostly incoherent, get-this-girl-a-drug-test-stat ramblings about the wonderful, wonderful, uh, you know, wonder of it all. My head is easily turned by a science fiction trope, and so I especially adore the colony world this story describes, the pathetic mundane probability of the scenario. I also love - and this is a lot rarer for me - the slow, horrifying build of this, the way realization sneaks up and whaps you on the head while you're distracted by this overwhelming wave of pure love for the Doctor, Jack, and Rose. And, because I am a total wuss, I also love (like, a lot), the way this story is structured: you get the hurt (all the more painful, at least to me, because it's so prosaic and possible) and the comfort (likewise simple and possible - I mean, except all the TARDIS-Time Lord-phone booth stuff). I just...I have love for this story, people. And also Jack. And the Doctor. And Rose. That is all.

The One That Teaches Us This Holy Lesson: Froot Loops Are Love. No, Really, They Are. Disgusting, Styrofoam-Flavored Love, but Who Am I to Judge? Fan Mail from a Flounder, by Punk, aka runpunkrun. Sports Night, Dan Rydell/Casey McCall.

Here, Danny discovers his one true love: email. Fortunately, that turns out to be a momentary blip, and he soon discovers his other one true love, but not until nearly everyone wants to punch him for talking about email so much. I think we can all sympathize. In fact, what's really miraculous is how charming Punk manages to make this behavior seem. Or, I don't know, maybe it's just me - I mean, am I the only one who has had to suffer through excruciating wedding receptions in which relatives tell me excitedly about how they've recently started using "the AOL"? (And I won't even try to describe the horror that was trying to explain email to my aunt, who believes in her heart that microwave ovens are destroying the American family. I will say, though, that the question, "But how does it get to the other computer? How does it know?" can still bring me to tears.)

This story is kind of a two-for-one, because there are two documents in it. One is an email that describes Dan as a "twenty-first century prince," which he probably is, and says that he understands the infield fly rule, which we know he doesn't because he's mostly sane and can still put his pants on without help. But the other is the one that reminds me exactly why I have loved, and will always love, this fandom. When a shopping list can make my heart swell with pure, sweet OTP love, well. That's a fandom that will never fade. Oh, Sports Night. My love is true.

The One That Makes Me Wonder What I'd Want My Epitaph to Be, If I Was Ever in Similar Circumstances.* Traces Through Time, by Icarus, aka icarusancalion. Stargate: Atlantis, Rodney McKay/John Sheppard.

Disclaimer: I love time travel stories. In non-fan fiction formats, I am the least critical consumer of them ever.** But, for reasons unknown to me, the exemption that all other forms of media get for giving me what I love (Time travel! Diaries! Gay!) does not extend to fan fiction; I'm an incredibly demanding reader when it comes to FF that hits my personal bulletproof kinks. When you can almost always get at least a little of exactly what you want, you're much less tolerant of near misses. That pretty much summarizes my entire fan fiction experience, right there.

Because, see, sometimes I do get exactly what I want. Like, take this story. I will just never leave fandom as long as there are stories in which Rodney is accidentally sent back in time and John reads his trapped-in-time diary and figures out how to help him and also gets to read a multi-page and very loving description of his cock. I just am incapable of even summoning up the words to describe my glee about this. It's like - it's like Marooned in Realtime***, but with an entirely happy ending. And the document. Oh, the document - I would totally kill to read an extended edition of this story with much longer passages from Rodney's Lost in Time diary. Or extracts from the symphony. Yes, he wrote John a symphony. (And that, my friends, is where my hard and shriveled little heart just melted into a puddle of extremely satisfied goo. Awwwwwww.)

The One in Which Batman Gives the World's Least Helpful Advice. "Assume Success" My Ass, Batty Boy. What Book Did You Find That Pedagogical Technique in, Breaking the Brains of the Next Generation? Able to Succeed, by brown_betty. D.C. Universe, gen.

I appear to be on quite the tear of "The Batuniverse Is Like Our Universe, Only Jam-Packed with Armed Nutballs in Armored Spandex" stories lately. (You know, I really didn't mean that to sound like a cross between a gay bar and a health food. It just came out that way. This is what happens when you try to write about the DCU, folks.) Here we have Tim (glorious Tim!) being inculcated into the Way of the Bat, by which I of course mean "winning through paranoia, obsessive-compulsive planning, and homoerotic overtones that are really much more overt than you'd think anyone could get away with."

There just aren't too many superheroes I can picture doing superhomework - I mean, sure, Charles Xavier runs a school complete with Danger Room (Danger! Room!) and suchlike, but does Rogue ever belly up to her desk and write a 20-page paper called "The Evolution of Team-Based Aerial Combat Techniques in a Post-Genosha Multiverse"? No. Wolverine? My god no. Cyclops? Okay, maybe. Probably. Almost certainly. But my point is, Batman's superhomework is just way cooler than that. Also way, way more insanity inducing, but that's just how they do it in Gotham; it is their native folkway, which we have all learned to admire greatly. (And oh my god, I just realized - someone needs to write a DCU story called "It's Hard out Here for a Bat." Please. Please. I'll...okay, I don't have anything to offer in trade, but I will love you forever I swear to god.)

-Footnotes-

* I'm joking. I already totally know what I want my epitaph to be, have for at least 15 years: "She lived in readiness for temporal anomaly." You may think you have a time travel kink, but trust me, it is nothing to my all-encompassing, seriously obsessive, downright disturbing time travel kink. I mean, I have a list of essential items I'd take back to any time period you care to name. I follow advances in particle physics solely for their relevance to potential means of time travel. I...whoa, I just totally outed myself as the geek of the century, didn't I?

** You know that version of The Time Machine that came out in 2002? (Before I looked it up, I was going to say "about a decade ago." Apparently my brain has elected to deal with the post-traumatic movie viewing stress by pretending it all happened a very long time ago. In another country. And the wench is dead.) I watched that with actual delight. (BB, immediately after we emerged into the harsh bright light of day: "Um. You, uh, you know that movie was bad, right?" Me, nearly skipping with joy: "Oh, yes. And I am so buying it the second it comes out!" BB: *nearly inaudible whimper*)

*** Don't even tell me you haven't read Marooned in Realtime by Vernor Vinge. Just. Don't. Even. Go quietly and shame-facedly to the library, your local bookstore, or Amazon, obtain a copy, and read until you break.
 
 
 
Wyoming Knott: chocolatewyomingnot on May 17th, 2006 10:49 pm (UTC)
Good grief. If I didn't know better, I'd think I had no mind of my own.

I've read Icarus' story before and absolutely adored it. Nevermind that I have to be onsite in seven hours and that I've been up for nineteen after less than four hours sleep... because you reminded me of its existence, it will be reread tonight.

Of course, I read the tampon rant first. *facepalms*

And took a detour to my local library's website and put Marooned in Realtime on hold.

I am pathetic.
tried to eat the safe banana: Daisythefourthvine on May 17th, 2006 11:57 pm (UTC)
*reads comment*

*rereads carefully, just to be sure*

I see nothing pathetic in any of that. It only shows that you have taste. Also possibly insomnia, but we all have insomnia - there's just no other way to explain fandom.

(You may also want to read The Peace War, which is a fantastic story in its own right, and technically the book to which Marooned in Realtime is a sequel. (There needs to be a word for that, by the way.) But - you don't need to read one to read the other, and though they are both great stories, it's MiR that just...wow. Talk about the subjective nature of time. *blinks in memory*)
(no subject) - wyomingnot on May 18th, 2006 03:52 am (UTC) (Expand)
cattrainecattraine on May 17th, 2006 10:55 pm (UTC)
WooHoo! Time Travel...
Although so far i have only managed to transport socks...*see LJ for details*
tried to eat the safe banana: Glorious fractalthefourthvine on May 18th, 2006 12:01 am (UTC)
Re: WooHoo! Time Travel...
See, I favor more of a black hole/white hole/wormhole theory of dryers. My own dryer is a white hole; it routinely spits out socks I have never seen before and that would not, in fact, fit on any foot in this household. Okay, it sometimes eats socks, too, but my suspicion is that there's just some kind of time dilation effect there.

*thoughtful*

You aren't missing a soft, fuzzy navy blue ankle sock, are you? That's the last one that emerged from our dryer. (And, yes, I think you're entirely right - all the spinning definitely has something to do with it.)
Re: WooHoo! Time Travel... - cattraine on May 18th, 2006 05:44 am (UTC) (Expand)
ficbyzee on May 17th, 2006 11:06 pm (UTC)
someone needs to write a DCU story called "It's Hard out Here for a Bat." Please. Please. I'll...okay, I don't have anything to offer in trade, but I will love you forever I swear to god.)

...can it be songfic?
tried to eat the safe banana: Musicthefourthvine on May 18th, 2006 12:03 am (UTC)
I don't see why not. It's kind of asking to be one, isn't it?

*doe eyes of hopefulness*
all right, so you're nonchalant: a long letter on a short piece of paperrunpunkrun on May 17th, 2006 11:10 pm (UTC)
Oh! I'm on your list! *squee*

And, I sort of keep forgetting I ever finished that SN fic. It sat, half-written, on my hard drive for YEARS before I finally pulled myself together and wrote the other half, and by that time I wasn't even in the fandom anymore.

My POINT, however, is that you have totally grasped the delicate nature of that story! The whole fic hinged on Casey's shopping list! It was the emotional climax! I had no idea if that would actually work or not, but by god I did it anyway. *g*
tried to eat the safe banana: Harriet Vane at typewriterthefourthvine on May 18th, 2006 12:10 am (UTC)
You know how we say of certain persons, "If she posted a grocery list, I'd read it"? You totally did. And it is good.

*awed*

(Note: please inspect your hard drive for other half-written stories right now. Thou shalt not hide your talents under a...whatever. Folder icon or similar.)
(no subject) - runpunkrun on May 18th, 2006 01:04 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 11:38 am (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
tried to eat the safe banana: I sleep with computers.thefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 11:45 am (UTC)
I explained some other technical topic, I don't remember, probably something web-related.

Oh, yes, I hear that. My conversation with my mother - well, more of a sermon, really - on why you have to check if you've got the capslock on or not, that will go down in legend. But by golly I've got her trained now: it's been *months* since she sent me an email in rEVERSE sENTENCE cASE.

I notice you managed to limit yourself to one story from the sga_flashfic documentation challenge for this awards topic.

*beams* And thank you for noticing. It was torture, picking just one. But I managed! In the end! Kind of like a movie, where the Average Girl (played by someone infinitely prettier and thinner than me, with hair that actually can be tamed) triumphs over major adversity! Or a disease! Or something! Only less, um, inspiring, since I was mostly triumphing over the forces of indecision.

Which is to say: yup, it was difficult. But in the end, I remembered that you can't go wrong choosing time travel. Time travel makes everything so much better. Even documentation.

*devoutly thankful for time travel*
plus one skeletondelurker on May 18th, 2006 06:18 am (UTC)
Periodically yours,
TFV

I am laughing far more than is probably rational at this point. Hee!

In regards to the time travel thing: what period would you most rather go back to? And what would you take for that time?

(Being so short-sighted, there are many times when I put my contact lens in and think to myself, God I hope I don't time travel while I'm wearing these and not my glasses. It's nice to know I'm not alone in this kind of thinking.)
Bettybrown_betty on May 18th, 2006 01:39 pm (UTC)
Um, do you mean period, or period? Because I'd go back to my seventh grade gym class, and bring a tampon.
(no subject) - delurker on May 18th, 2006 06:27 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 12:21 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - brown_betty on May 19th, 2006 12:31 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 11:48 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - delurker on May 20th, 2006 01:02 am (UTC) (Expand)
spratsprat on May 18th, 2006 06:42 am (UTC)
Are you watching Life On Mars? Because I think that probably you should be. *pimps (not so) cryptically*

Also, thanks for these. I haven't read any of them, so I'm all with the yay.
tried to eat the safe banana: Huh - Mutant Blue Thingthefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 11:50 am (UTC)
Well, I've got through step one of watching it (or, rather, making Best Beloved watch it, since nothing would ever get done if I actually had to watch my own media). I am arguing with the DVD burner as we speak. And I've seen, oh, several vids. Which, really, being me - that means I'm basically ready to start with the FF.

Any recs for me?
(no subject) - sprat on May 20th, 2006 03:49 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Cherry: cherry (seasonal)cherryice on May 18th, 2006 07:33 am (UTC)
Oh, hee! I made a recs list! *giddy* Thank you ever so much.

I really was trying to bring things down the every day, the mundane, because I figure that most of us don't look around wide-eyed at the wonder of our world; nor did we 10 years ago, or 100 years ago, and I don't figure that would have changed much.

That was a bit of a tangent, but what I'm really saying is thank you, and it means that extra bit more because you liked what I was trying to do, which isn't always what I actually do. (I did mention I was a bit giddy, rigiht?)

Don't discount your beta skills, hon, because they are mad. (On that note -- did you still want me to take a look at your picfor1000 story for you, or has it been banished to the subfolder ether of your HD?)

PS: If you're still interested in Who, I might be able to arrange a few file transfers for you, if you're interested.
tried to eat the safe banana: I sleep with computers.thefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 12:29 pm (UTC)
That was a bit of a tangent, but what I'm really saying is thank you, and it means that extra bit more because you liked what I was trying to do, which isn't always what I actually do.

*beams*

Yay! And I'm glad you're giddy; it's a total bonus. I got to rec a fabulous story and I made someone happy while doing it.

And I do totally want you to look at my hypothetically picfor1000 story. I just have to screw my courage to the sticking point and look at it first, and so far, um. I'm not very brave.

I suspect the basic concept will not play quite as well now as it did then.

Current goal: to get the damn thing posted before the next picfor1000. That should be doable, right?

*eyes hard drive with trepidation*

PS: If you're still interested in Who, I might be able to arrange a few file transfers for you, if you're interested.

I am, in fact, still interested in Who, although it thwarts me at every turn in a way that suggests it is possessed by pure, unspeakable evil. File transfers would be delightful.

*braces for further thwarting*
(no subject) - cherryice on May 19th, 2006 05:46 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - cherryice on May 19th, 2006 05:47 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Admission to the Burning Ruins — 10¢: Brain Hurtslaughingacademy on May 18th, 2006 07:55 am (UTC)
You know that version of The Time Machine that came out in 2002? ...I watched that with actual delight. (BB, immediately after we emerged into the harsh bright light of day: "Um. You, uh, you know that movie was bad, right?" Me, nearly skipping with joy: "Oh, yes. And I am so buying it the second it comes out!" BB: *nearly inaudible whimper*)

Ogodogodogod! I was frothing when I came out of the theater! I mean, granted, pretty like whoa (plus Jeremy Irons EEEEEEEEEE!!!), but they raped the story! And if they had to give the Time Traveller a Tragick Doomed Romance as motivation, they should have least had the guts to include a black-comedy montage of Failed Rescues, rather than letting him give up after one try.

*

In other news, Doctor Who is love. ∞ ♥
tried to eat the safe banana: Time won't find the lostthefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 12:34 pm (UTC)
but they raped the story!

So very true. And yet, time travel montages. *sighs in helpless admiration of the very, very, very bad movie*

And if they had to give the Time Traveller a Tragick Doomed Romance as motivation, they should have least had the guts to include a black-comedy montage of Failed Rescues, rather than letting him give up after one try.

That would have helped a lot, although the basic irritation of the Tragick Doomed Romance (tm you) cannot be subverted. Why do they subject us to love and death and blah doomed tragic OH GOD JUST KILL HER NOW AND PUT HER OUT OF OUR MISERY "plot" when there could be additional time travel montages?

I have, um. A certain narrow focus in matters like these.
(no subject) - laughingacademy on May 20th, 2006 05:23 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
tried to eat the safe banana: Suspicious owlthefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 12:35 pm (UTC)
EEEEEE!

(I, um. Am making pathetic last-minute plans that mostly revolve around me trying to avoid driving there. Could you get me from the airport if I flew? And which, um, airport would that be?)

*is really, really pathetic*
(Deleted comment)
tried to eat the safe banana: Ivythefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 12:45 pm (UTC)
I have just about stopped buying current-release novels (with notable exceptions for c-r novels that were written by fanfic writers whom I know and love), because inevitably I wind up thinking, "I paid money for this? Somebody got paid money for *writing* this? Because [insert faboo fanfic writer of your choice] does better than this every day and twice on Sunday, and I get it for *free*."

Yes. So very yes. This is why I laugh at Goldberg et al who feel so threatened by FF; my basic reaction is, "Of course you feel threatened. You should, because we've got people so much better than you."

I still buy novels by FF folks and hard SF novels. (No one in fandom appears to be willing to satisfy my desire for lengthy explanations of abstruse and often improbable math and physics theories in the midst of a story, and, sure, I'm usually even happier with the sex, but sometimes I need my science porn.) And, of course, non-fiction. I buy a lot of non-fiction.

Travel essays especially.

So fan fiction hasn't really conquered my weak-willed, gimme gimme gimme approach to bookstores, but it has changed the location of my tragic lapses of moral strength and resultant buying sprees.

Note to self: send more feedback.

Amen, sister.

(Note to self: likewise.)
(Deleted comment)
starfishchick on May 18th, 2006 09:31 am (UTC)
Should I read The Peace War before Marooned in Realtime?
tried to eat the safe banana: Bookthefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 12:48 pm (UTC)
You don't have to; none of the characters is the same - it's the same universe, but an entirely new story. If you're a big science fiction reader, then you probably should; otherwise, you probably shouldn't. (It's a much more standard SF plot. Marooned in Realtime is where he started crossing genres and getting dynamite results.)
(no subject) - starfishchick on May 25th, 2006 05:47 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Betty: It was real.brown_betty on May 18th, 2006 01:42 pm (UTC)
Isn't Verner Vinge fabulous? And not just because in German his name would be Werner Winge.

WWhhhhhhhhheeee you recced my story! [weeps tears of joy. Goes to read time travel story]
tried to eat the safe banana: Word whorethefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 12:54 pm (UTC)
Isn't Verner Vinge fabulous? And not just because in German his name would be Werner Winge.

Oh so very much yes. When he's on, he's on. (Wernor Winge! *snickers*)

I'm a little afraid of his latest book, though. Mostly 'cause I think it'll be (possibly unintentionally) sad. I keep hoping someone in fandom will read it and then slap a summary and some warning labels on it for me.

WWhhhhhhhhheeee you recced my story!

But of course. You capture the essence of Bat so very, very well.

*admires you*

*but from a distance, in case Batness is catching, because that is definitely something best appreciated from the perspective of an impartial observer*
noneecanoneeca on May 18th, 2006 06:38 pm (UTC)
you're unhappy with Mother Nature? honey, i live in Canada, near the Great Lakes. we have normal weather, usually. but right now? it feels like Indian monsoon season. it's been raining pretty much non-stop for 9 days. thunderstorms, downpours, the works. i went out this afternoon, braving the stormy weather, to put out the garbage. one of my housemates had managed to forget to put the lid on after the bin had been emptied on monday. it was half full of water. *falls over* i'm praying for this to stop before i have to take the hint and start building a boat...

great list of recs, by the by! :)
tried to eat the safe banana: Gloom and umbrellasthefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 12:59 pm (UTC)
Okay, granted, you guys are having some, uh, unusual weather up there. You win, definitely. It's just...pollen...allergies...breathing...okay, no. You really, really win.

*wheezes pathetically*

But it's all more evidence of nature as the One True Evil, isn't it? I mean, we're all suffering under the same lash. It's just a hot and sunny (but pollen-filled!) lash down here, whereas up there it's more...act of god, man the lifeboats type lash.

*passes you the wood and the cubit measure*
Andreatainted_phial on May 19th, 2006 11:21 am (UTC)
You know that version of The Time Machine that came out in 2002? (Before I looked it up, I was going to say "about a decade ago." Apparently my brain has elected to deal with the post-traumatic movie viewing stress by pretending it all happened a very long time ago. In another country. And the wench is dead.) I watched that with actual delight. (BB, immediately after we emerged into the harsh bright light of day: "Um. You, uh, you know that movie was bad, right?" Me, nearly skipping with joy: "Oh, yes. And I am so buying it the second it comes out!" BB: *nearly inaudible whimper*)

One of the worst movies ever. Don't get me wrong I like time machines. But. They characters are in a different color than the background. Like the main character was in brown and the setting was filmed in a blue light. OMG. No.

Also, yeah recs! *Goes off to read*
tried to eat the safe banana: Little Citythefourthvine on May 19th, 2006 01:02 pm (UTC)
One of the worst movies ever.

Truly terrible. And yet I was entranced. I am so much the bitch of any movie involving time travel, it's just...wow. Pathetic.

I own my shame, here.

Because...yes, okay, bad what-passed-for-plot, bad characters, bad special effects, even. But there were time travel montages!

*cuddles the time travel montages*
(no subject) - tainted_phial on May 23rd, 2006 07:36 pm (UTC) (Expand)