Stress Direction and the Time I Have To Do Things

So I haven’t posted anything here very recently–hell, last thing I posted was a picture of a goat (which I swear is more impressive than it sounds) I drew for one of my sister’s stories.

I don’t think I have quite the steady readership here, but I do write elsewhere (fanfiction, mostly, on Archive Of Our Own, and Fanfiction.net), and I do actually have regular visitors to many of my stories.

Hell, in a world of usernames mostly made or kept from your tweens or drunken haha-this-is-obviously-the-best-idea‘s, I recognize a rather astonishing amount of usernames and profile pictures that aren’t actually of people. (Hahaha, yes, so sayeth Doodled93 with a Halloween costumed selfie to the one side and a picture of my dog on the other. But my username is an adaption of a childhood nickname and the creative use of my birth year, so.)

But the thing is, I have a pretty steady readership in my fanfiction plunges, people I’m surprised to see reviewing/commenting on one story or another because they’re usually commenting on other fandoms I’ve written in, and usually it’s pretty nice. The thing I like about Ao3 (archive of our own, for those not in the know) is how friendly everyone is, and while part of that, I think, is because you have to join a usually quick waiting list to even get an account (whereas there are many dud ffn.net accounts), but also because people looking into fanfiction are generally pretty nice.

Actually care about what you post, the quality you crank out, and people will respond.

I think the most negative comments I get nowadays is from people reviewing for the first time a story I wrote nearly, gosh, 8 years ago now(02/14), and it’s mostly about the overuse of some punctuation.

But the negative comments I get aren’t the annoying ones, not really, and I think I’ve mentioned this before, but berating and shouting at me for not having updated one story in a while gets me stressed and annoyed and a bit spiteful. 

It’s the stressed part of that mix that I’m going to be focusing on today, but you should really pay attention to the fact that when I get annoyed I get spiteful.

If you’ve read anything of mine before this, of the non-fiction side of things, you’ll know that I’ve had a lot to say about stress. I’ve written about stressful situations, I’ve written about what stress is really like for me, I’ve even just tagged posts as ‘stress’ or ‘stressful’ simply because writing about it gets my anxiety up.

I don’t deal with stress well.

I think I’ve gotten better, in that instead of bottling it up I let it out in bursts to Lexy and internet and real life friends in short bursts, but I still have the avoid-it instinct…

Do you see why it is doubly unwise to yell at me and snark about when I’ll likely update?

Because I’m NOT a writer that can work within a certain deadline, I am simply one that can work within parameters. Hmm, should this story be 10k/chapter, or maybe 5k, or should this be every 7 pages, or… hmm. When should I be updating this, because otherwise the chapter will either go on forever or else never get worked on due to its open-ended-ness.

When I was in a bad way after Ottawa-related failings, I was stressed and unhappy and trying my best to avoid real life and all that comes with that, and so I got quite a bit of writing done.

Because when you’re avoiding real life, fiction is where it’s at.

Or just the internet in general.

I read and wrote a hell of a lot, and was unemployed so I had all the time I could possibly want and/or need, and basically turned all my attention towards plot, character development, 10k long chapters, and taking breaks in-between to finish whole seasons of TV shows. As uncomfortable as it may seem to you, I wallowed in unemployment and a feeling of failure but was 80% oblivious to it because 80% of my day was turned towards fictional drama, and a large part of the remaining 20% was eating and sleeping in.

Now, however, I’m in a bit of a better place, and I have a job.

Full-time even, and for a while I had TWO jobs, at least until current job was like “What would it take for you to quit working other job and come here full-time?”

Kudos to past put-on-the-spot me, because I responded with ‘benefits’, because that seemed more likely than ‘more than minimum wage’.

And now while I have stressy bits of work (working in the produce section of an organic foods store means there’s ALWAYS SOMETHING TO BE DONE, and also manager issues but whatever), I am working full-time.

I can no longer utilize my best writing time (between 10pm and 2am) because I either have work to get to at 7am, or I’ve returned from an exhausting shift that ended at 9:30pm.

So no, my writing is not happening at quite the same pace as it was last year, or even over the summer, but you know what?

Stress is usually the thing that gets me writing, because it is an escape.

Sometimes more than reading, because I am quite literally feeling like I’m in my characters head.

When I haven’t written in a long while, or am blanking on what–or how–to write in a particular story I have yet to update for a while, I experience a bit of anxiety, because I do want to write. I enjoy it. But I stress myself out in a minimal way when I haven’t updated something in a while, because I’m disappointing myself. Not in a ‘you could do better’ kind of way, but more like making plans, looking forward to it, and then finding out that either you or the person(s) you were going to hang out with and do that thing with can’t make it.

Oh, ok. Next time then. 

But when I get passive aggressive remarks and pressure from people who, while it’s flattering that they’re enjoying what I’ve written that much, don’t give a f*** what else I’m doing or how much pressure they and their unknowing compadre’s are putting on me, who would very likely feel a bit of camaraderie with the others if they knew (Hah, the author will have to update sooner than expected if we’re ALL shouting at the same time), well.

Stressed.

Annoyed.

Spiteful.

Let’s work our way up, shall we?

Spite, a desire to hurt, annoy, or offend someone.

Leads up to Annoy, irritate (someone); make (someone) a little angry.

And though it’s not in there, anger is part of this too.

I don’t like being angry, I don’t like the way it makes me feel, I don’t like experiencing that boiling in my gut, and I especially don’t like how hard it is to keep it focused on the intended recipient/aggressor. It’s like the difference between being a little peeved and being actually angry is like using two different types of weapons. Being peeved is like your emotions are turned into a laser, easy to point it at the thing that’s causing it.

Being angry is like having that laser pointer turned into some kind of gun that lets out a poisonous miasma. It’s scary, there’s kickback that can injure you, and as soon as it’s out, it’s up in the air. It could affect anyone. Could hurt anyone.

And you know what? If you let me get to know you for 48 hours, within that 48 hours I will have figured out what sort of thing I would have to say to you to actually hurt your feelings, the way that shouldn’t hurt because it’s a relative stranger saying it to you, but hits deep anyways. But I don’t say it. Ever. Because if hearing that it’s that easy to figure out how to hurt a stranger verbally puts you off from ever wanting to interact or even meet me, then maybe it’ll change your mind to hear that I don’t say any of it because I find it very easy to empathize, and I’m selfish enough to not want the emotional backlash of hurting your feelings.

But being actually angry makes that wall in my head of ‘no, you do not say this ever’ seem more like a line, and hey, isn’t it closer than I thought it was, and I bet I could walk right over it, easy as pie.

And that is stressful.

Stress, a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances, makes me want to escape. I don’t like being angry because I don’t like confrontation, and I don’t like actually feeling stressed out because I don’t like feeling like I need to escape.

And I really don’t like feeling like I need to escape from my escape.

There are a few situations that I get into that translate into me not being able to write coherently/well.

Alcohol. I will never be that writer who sits down to write with a bottle of wine (i don’t drink wine but that’s besides the point), or with a beer, and a masterpiece will never have its rough draft written in a drunken haze.

Exhaustion. I can write best when it’s late into the night, but I’m pretty antisocial, and interacting with people is exhausting. This is why I don’t really write well after work, because 1) I’m tired, and 2) writing how character a interacts with characters b-z around them is working socialization muscles that do not have the capabilities for this sort of work. I get steadily more anxiety ridden when I have to talk for a prolonged amount of time, and that makes me stressed, and makes me want to escape, and it’s hard to interact socially and also escape at the same time.

And I kind of just mentioned it within ‘exhaustion’, but Stress.

Because if you missed it,

It is hard to interact with anything when all you want to do is escape.

So yeah, this is 1700 words of unhappiness at how some strangers on the internet are making something I enjoy, something I like escaping to, into something I feel like I need to escape from.

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Inexplicably Sad.

I don’t know why, but after I post a new chapter to a story, or even after posting a short story like I did before this post…

I feel kind of bad. 

Not in a moral or physical way, but sort of emotionally bereft? I dunno. 

I just spent ages and ages working on this thing, and there, I just posted it… 

Now what?

I just posted a new chapter for my story Too Tired To Wink, which I actually don’t feel like linking to, you can find it on Archiveofourown.org if you feel the need, and for this story I decided that I would post a chapter only once the word count has reached 10k…. this way I have a set limit, and since the limit is so large, I get a couple of things out of it. 

1) I don’t feel like a shit person for making people wait so long for an update and gave them 3 pages of nothing

2) Though I do anyway, in 10k a lot of plot happens and I have to keep thinking about what will need to happen for this or that to happen, so I have a chance to put reasonable foreshadow in

3) I don’t go through any of that waffling of if something’s done or not. When I’m reaching or have surpassed 10k, I find a place to stop. It’s like reaching that point of night where you’re like “Well, this book doesn’t actually have chapters….” and you just figure out the best stop to hold off at. 

But though it’s good to finish a chapter–good to finish a story–there’s still some weird blankness after posting. 

I feel like having a break from writing, and I want to hear feedback, and… and I really don’t feel like doing much else. 

So, in the wake of T3W’s third chapter, I’m writing this. 

Just feeling a bit morose. Inexplicably sad. 

:\

My First (Writing Experience)

I think that one of the main reasons people don’t write is because they think they have to be good at it right away.

That it should come along the same way we first learned to write, in that it comes along with reading.

You read a lot–ergo, you must be able to write well, hmm??? You’ve read so much you should be able to pump out a good novel pretty easily, right?

Noooooo, that’s not quite how it works.

I should probably change that ‘noooo’, make it something less negative, but I’m not quite sure at the moment how I should be getting across that sort of tone.

Anyway, not to toot my own horn-or, as the case might be, review my own book–but I’m a pretty good writer.

I don’t always have the best grammar, and the from vs form thing that slips past spell check, along with the randomly floating o’s and s’s and f’s drive me crazy… but I’m a good writer.

Mostly Fanfiction right now, but I find it’s easier to iron out plot holes and specifics in fanfiction, easier to get regular feedback, and since in fanfiction you usually have a good idea of what a character is like it means you can really focus on the plot.

It also makes you focus on the actual characters and how to build a situation around preconceived notions, and how to change them.

And, to go back to what I was saying before about the correlation between reading and writing–reading a lot doesn’t mean that you’ll be great at writing, or that writing will come to you easily.

But it’ll help. Boy, it’ll help.

I read a lot of fanfiction, and I read a lot of ‘real’ books, the published kind.

I think fanfiction writers have it a bit easier, because when you read fanfiction you already have a bit of an emotional investment in certain characters (To quote my friend Lisa, who’s been agonizing about the amount of tragedy that’s made it into my And I Wake Up story, “Ianto my babbbyyyyyyy!”), the kind that ‘real’ published books have to work towards.

Gah, and if it tells you how much of a good writer I am, I’m usually a bit better at being cohesive and keep the flow in my writing, but in case you didn’t notice the title, what I’m *trying* to tell you about is my first writing experience.

The non-school kind.

Short stories you’re assigned to write don’t count. Not really to me, but then I never actually got into my short stories, so…

Yeah.

Emma (Middle sibling of te household) has been writing since forever (I think she got into it when she was in the womb…might be why I like reading, she probably left wall scrawls as an embryo–no, weird gross thought, weird gross thought, ick, stoppit, blah, no mom thoughts like that >< ), and if you have siblings you know that some things just end up being their thing.

Like you each have your own seat in the car, your own certain seat, same with your spot at the table, and really, jut about everything gets turned into a ‘but that’s MY ____’ situation at some point.

So writing was her thing.

Anime was also her thing… at first.

She was the one to introduce me to my first fandom. InuYasha.

_-_-_-Brief intermission-_-_-_

Fandom: [Fan-dumb] A show/book/series/pretty much anything that you ‘get into’ and follow regularly. Like Gleeks. Or the people into CSI: (whatever). Or Whovians. Trekkies. Whatever. Lots of stuff.

InuYasha: [Ee-nu-yah-sh-ah] anime about a school girl Kagome who gets pulled back to the feudal era by a demon, where she sees and meets other demons, freaks out when the half-demon InuYasha tries to kill her for looking like the Priestess Kikyo–a pretty bitchy character who pinned him to a tree with an arrow for various reasons. There’s also a jewel. Check out the link, but that’s enough of a hook, yeah? Yeah.

_-_-_-Intermission over-_-_-_

So she got me into InuYasha, and I got really into it. Like, I had my own tape so I could record the episodes every Friday… I can’t remember when it was on, but One Piece was on right after it. I also looked up art for it, fan art and everything, and then I was introduced to fanfiction. Went a bit (a lot) crazy over it.

Yeah. I was born to dive head first into fandom.

But, like every person first getting into a fandom, and then discovering fanfction, I thought I could include my own character. I would write fanfiction. That’s different from writing regular stories, yeah? Yeah.

So I developed my character in my head, first, occupying my thoughts to this development during long car rides, when I was bored in class, any time I was listening to music… pretty much all the damn time.

Her name was Alex. (Lexy, I know, but I needed a unisex name because Alex could also turn herself into a himself at will, and yeah this says something about how well this character works out…)

Alex had black hair with silver tips–not dyed, you understand, but whenever you cut her hair the tips would slowly bleach to silver–usually pressed down with a baseball cap.

To those who know me you now know when this character came to be. For those who don’t, I wore a baseball cap all the freaking time for a certain age, indoors or outdoors didn’t matter. Linkylink for more on that.

She also wore a hoody and jeans, usually, and she kicked ass. She came in and fixed every damn thing that I found wrong in the series. Just about every character had a crush on her, and any time a character canonically did something that annoyed me, she would show them the error of their ways–Kikyo was a thing of the past, never mind the evil Naraku (who was also crushing on Alex, btw), and  EERYBODY LOVED HER! She was awesome, and had twin brothers who she loved very much (who I think were named Dylan and Scott…) and were the only ones to be able to rein her in.

She could do no wrong, she occasionally had animal ears and a tail, and, oh yeah, she could bring people back to life when she cried about her tragic past.

Okay, so I created a Mary Sue. The annoyingly perfect character that has no place outside of a children’s show.

To be fair (to me), I think this all happened around ’06 or so… and to put that into perspective, I posted my first actual consistent writing venture in ’09.

So one day I sat down and started to write the ultimate intro of Alex to the show, the rock solid base to my obviously huge venture…

It would be epic, Alex would be flippant about her awesomeness, shit would go down and she’d be able to deal with it looking like butter wouldn’t melt in her mouth… Oh yeah, I was prepared to write the epic story for this girl.

I think I got maybe half a page of writing out before I got bored and frustrated, saved the file to a floppy disk, and went to play outside.

I think it may still be on a floppy disk, somewhere. Lost. Forgotten. Ish.

Aaaand once again, that was probably around ’06, maybe ’07… 2-3 years before I actually tried again.

I think I’m rather lucky. I managed to get my first bad writing out of the way. I also managed to figure out what a waste of time a Mary Sue is, though it wasn’t for a long time that  I found out what it *was*…. this, however, didn’t make me stop imagining her universe jumping to other shows, and singing and dancing and FIXING her way through their fandoms, either.

I just think more people should write, take a chance, and invest themselves into making up a whole new character, a whole new world *cue music* and all that jazz.

Even if your first attempt isn’t something you’re happy with, or, hell, if your first attempt is something that you are happy with, you shouldn’t be afraid to just sit down and write.

My challenge to you is to joining Camp NaNoWriMo, set a goal for yourself (the default is 50,000 words, but some people are doing 10,000 and less), and reach it before the end of the month.
Also, Regular NaNoWriMo, that’s in November. That’s awesome, too.

 

Things I’ve Noticed About Good Fanfiction Stories Turning Into Bad!fics

Just a couple of things I’ve noticed that… well, if they don’t change the story entirely, it is a good indicator that either the story will be going to a dark place, or else will be put in hiatus soon.
Or else will show that the good start was an illusion.

CLUB SCENES
Club scenes are good if you have an actual purpose for them. If you have an informant, or are looking for someone, or else are looking for a quick scene to be the start of what-did-I-do-last-night problems.
But if you decide it’s time for your character and all his/her friends to make it to a club just because… It makes me assume you don’t have any idea where you’re going from there. You have decided to forgo cohesive plot lines and have blanked out the idea of pacing in your story, and decide to describe dancing and singing and really, there’s a reason why there are dance/singing movies by the dozen, but hardly a book to be seen.
If going to the club doesn’t have any purpose, don’t use it. Chekhov’s gun is applicable here–don’t mention something unless it’s important. Don’t mention the gun above the mantle place unless it’s going to be used, and don’t gush over dance moves unless dancing will be important later.

REVIEWS PLS LOL JK BUT SRSLY
This is two in on, the ridiculous abbreviations and begging for reviews. I don’t really take people who use srsly and lol and rofl and whatever else in excess. You’re trying to write a story here, use your words. No–no, use ALL of each word. If you have a character that speaks in these shortenings, well, that’s you using them responsibly. But in AN’s and the like it makes you sound–dare I say it?–Derpy.
And the begging for reviews… Well, those occasionally get paired with what I call the hostage situation.
“If I don’t get X amount of reviews I’m not posting the next chapter lol”
Right. Well then. So sorry to have wasted my time, as you obviously have no interest in writing or posting this story if you have to be cajoled into writing. You apparently also don’t care about the quality of reviews, if you’re inviting dozens of ‘update soon’ reviews.
If you’re writing a story, and are serious about it, people will review when they have something to say. You want reviews? Write something that creates a reaction. but do it with a plan.
Don’t just kill off a character just because, do it because it’s time. Don’t just randomly decide for something to happen, because then it’s weirdly random, and not enjoyable.
So yeah, use your words and stop begging and holding chapters hostage. It’s annoying, and *I’m* certainly not going to be the one to drag you kicking and screaming into writing your own damn story.

CAMEOS
If you aren’t writing a crossover, don’t do it.
If they have no reason to be there, don’t do it.
If you just really like so-and-so and want to write a story with them in it, don’t choose any random story to include them in. It’s weird and if someone doesn’t know them, it’s weird and confusing.
If you want character from X show to interact with character with Y show, then write a crossover. COMMIT.
A lot of stories that suddenly have cameos end up with Mary Sues, too, and that’s just not good.
Or else the author has given up on writing anything of value, and has just let their fantasies go wild.
More on Mary Sue’s later, but an example of cameos gone wrong is an InuYasha fanfiction, very clearly Kagome/InuYasha, and the author brought in the lead singer of Simple Plan, and had him in love with Kagome, not to mention the number of famous actors and record companies after her for her amazing voice and stellar dance moves earlier displayed at the club. WHY did they bring it up in a story about general high school problems? No clue. It did nothing for it.

MARY SUE’S and STU’S and OC’s TAKING OVER
If you want to write yourself into a story, do so, but don’t disguise yourself as a character already part of the story. If you’re planning on writing a story about an entirely self-made character who waltzes into a series you like, go ahead. But it gets REALLY irritating when part way through a story I’ve invested myself in, you introduce one fo these characters and instead of having the story I’ve invested in I now have a story about your OC. Your Other Character has hijacked your story, and you don’t even seem to mind.
Now, occasionally these OC’s don’t end up Mary Sue’s and Stu’s, but it is a rare occurrence. This is because we put a lot of effort into creating our own characters, and it’s hard to have our babies ride in the back seta, or even the passenger seat when we have the ability to put them in the driver’s seat. But go out and write them their own story, or else don’t let them hijack your other projects.
And Mary Sue’s/Stu’s… If your character, self-made or adopted form a series, has no problems, no weaknesses, and fixes every problem that heads their way, then you are making a Mary Sue. Wild Hair, amazing voice, fabulous dancer, AND they prevented that one character from dying like they did in canon? Wowza, what a Mary Sue.
And what? Oh, pardon me, they *do* have problems don’t they… What a tragic past they’ve overcome, what hardships they’ve dealt with, and they’ve gotten over their emotional trauma just in time for them to save the day… convenient, yes?
If you think I’m just making fun, check out this comic that shows all the problems with such a character, and enjoy, and maybe you’ll be able to recognize a Mary Sue in the future. Ensign Sue Must Die is a fantastic comic, as is its sequel Revenge of the Sue (can be found through the link above, seriously looking for ‘revenge of the sue’ will get you angry p0rn)

And, just to be honest, I was very close to writing my own Sue and posting it. But then I recognized that what I was writing was a plot-less fix-it-all and stopped.
As for OC’s taking over…
If you’ve read my story It’s Green, you’ll know I have a number of OC’s in it. Most of which were entirely unintentional. Max was supposed to be a one time deal, Mr. Baryn a fluff character, all of them not even riding in the back seat–they aren’t even in the car. But I wrote them intending for them to be side characters, and not even significant ones, and they developed on their own into something a bit more.
Not enough to take over the story, and in fact I’ve had a number of comments on how non-confrontational my OC’s are in regards to plot development. They are obviously different characters, they don’t have the cut and paste feel of reusing a characters trait and style, and they have plots and ideas of their own… but they aren’t the main character. They occasionally HELP the main character, but that’s it. They’re doing their job as side characters. And that’s it.
I also have a more Main Character OC in my Torchwood story (CoE Fix-it HERE, sequel now up), again a character who I was intending on being a one-off character, but he’s a villain. And he doesn’t have a real name yet, either. Right now he’s just Boss Man.
I also have a couple of OC’s in there that I rather like, and intentionally developed the characters (for a change) of for plotty reasons (before, they were just names and not even part-playing characters), but I made them for plot reasons, and they still aren’t going to take over the story. I just happen to have one big plot, with a couple smaller plots within and beside it, and this OC plot has its own uses.

So really, use your OC’s responsibly, and if you want them to be centre stage… well, why not START a story with that in mind, hmm? Aren’t they worth their own story?
And beware of can-do-no-wrong fix-it-all characters, because you may be writing a Sue.

And, for a last thing that, while it doesn’t show that a story is heading to a dark place or will be put on Hiatus, is irritating…

SRRY, BAD AT SUMMARIES
Really? Well, if you’re bad at summaries perhaps you aren’t that great at writing stories.
This is not to say you can’t be good at writing stories and be bad at writing the hook, the summary.. just, when looking for a story I’m already looking for something that attracts my interest. This is an unsure thing, because the story I pick might not be all that great, or might disinterest me, and really I enjoy finding the well written, well thought out stories. When you tell me, point blank, that you aren’t good at summaries, it seems like you’re telling me “I HAVE NO CONFIDENCE IN MY WRITING IT MAY BE BAD LOL READ IT ANYWAY!” If it turns out that you would’ve written a better summary, eventually you can change it. But when you say the summary is bad, you’re telling me you think the summary is bad, and that you went with it anyway. It’s not attractive, it doesn’t give me the sense that your story might be good, and the worst of it is that before you said anything about it, I might not have thought that the summary was all that bad. If it was bad and still gained my interest, then good for you. But what if I thought it was good and you still said this? Well, the I’m not interested in what you label as good or bad, because you obviously can’t handle having your work out there for viewing, for critique, because you’re pretty much trying to beat me to the punch.
Lol I know it was bad, I said as much didn’t I? Yeah, now noting you can say will hurt meeee because–ooh, ouch! Wh would you say that? You’re just repeating me! YOU CAN’T INJUR ME! *cue hurt look and sniffles*
The laughing at your own problems thing isn’t fool-proof, and again, is generally unattractive.
The same can be said for the “First Fic!” mentions in the summary, because it’s pretty obvious you’re trying to make SURE you have an excuse out there in case people don’t read AN’s. Because if you just write it in an AN then someone could miss it and judge your writing thinking that you’re a seasoned writer.
It’s unattractive, and ridiculous, and mentioning it in the summary makes me think that, as your first fic, you’re not experienced enough to know about things like quality.

Anyway, yes I know it’s a bit rant-y, but I’ve noticed quite a few fics have these horribly annoying ‘first fics’, ‘bad summary’ and lol’s in them, and a couple fo the stories I’ve been following for a couple of years now have either petered out into Hiatus, or else have forced me to stop following because they’ve decided to turn this story about the mafia into a Dancing, singing, reality show, or else a story about a girl dealing with the problems of teen pregnancy finding that she can be an actor while giving the best care to her toddler, as well as satisfying her harem of uuber rich suitors. All of whom are interested in a relationship with her even knowing about her kid.
Reeeeally annoyed at this shit.
If anyone else has anything that points to a story changing track, or turn-offs for summaries, let me know.

 

I don’t know why, but it’s AWESOME.

It’s not that the thing is awesome, more that the thing is going to happen.

My Torchwood fanfiction ‘And I Wake Up‘  (which has now reached 50k!) has a somewhat steady readership, and you can probably find it in the comments, but someone asked me if they could make it into a podfic.

A podfic, if you’re wondering and don’t want to click the link I’ve so generously offered you, is an audiobook. Generally pronounced “Pod Fick” (Pod like the pod people, or three peas in a pod, and Fick like You’re putting on a British accent and trying to say ‘thick’, or fick like the beginning of fickle or like Fiction which is where the shortening comes from), it’s the meme-ish version of what you’d be able to get from a library.

It’s a weird thing, but I say this as someone who genuinely enjoys reading words on a page, multiple pages for an even better experience, and the idea of someone being like “Well, I really liked the beginning, but can’t I just lie back and listen to it being read to me instead?”…

Well it’s a strange one.

I don’t know why they want to do it, but it’s flattering as hell.

It’d be like getting fan art, and even if it isn’t particularly great, the vain peacock that you try to hide behind modesty perks its head up and preens.

Ooh, compliments for me? Why thank you, I'll take that with a grandios dash of YES I'm amazing :D

Ooh, compliments for me? Why thank you, I’ll take that with a grandios dash of YES I’m amazing 😀

Also, yes I like Batman. I AM BATMAN.

So I don’t know how this’ll work out, It might end up being crap, all my spelling mistakes might come out in words, but you know what?

I’m going to listen to that.

I’m going to download it, and listen to someone else read out my story.

I’m also going to be linking to it when even one PART of it is done, and you know what? SO MANY MORE PEOPLE WILL HAVE ‘READ’ MY STORY AFTER THIS GETS OUT.

I don’t care if the person narrating has the most out-of-my-mind odd voice, this stuff will be on my iTunes, hell, IT’S GONNA BE ON MY PHONE.

I’m going to ruin all sense of anonymity and post this stuff on facebook.

Because YES I’m a vain peacock, and, speaking from experience, the people who say that being this excited over something as small as this, I know the feeling.

Don’t be jealous 😀 I know you want to be as happy as I am right now because I haven’t been this weirdly happy since…

Well, I think since I was so determined to believe that Santa was real. (Or maybe since Lexy made the post about it I’m linking you all to, read it and her blog because she’s amazing), or maybe when it was my turn to be the Easter Bunny (Bulk Barn didn’t know what hit it).

Thing is, I’m genuinely happy, and I don’t even know entirely what I’m happy about.

I’m just enjoying the feeling.

Whether you read my stories or not, if you’ll be listening to my story or not, someone liked my (Now 50, 000 word long) story enough that they wanted to express it outside of a review, and it’s fantastic.

I’m happy 🙂

fabpinkshoes

And, if my blurb about being happy about a podfic didn’t brighten your day, here’s the story behind this last picture:

Yesterday my mom posted a picture on Facebook of my 5 year old brother Sam wearing a pair of shoes he picked out for his first day of preschool.

She explained to him in the store that they were really made for girls. Sam then told her that he didn’t care and that “ninjas can wear pink shoes too.”

Sam went to preschool and got several compliments on his new shoes. Not one kid said anything negative toward him about it.

However, my mom received about 20 comments on the photo from various family members saying how “wrong” it is and how “things like this will affect him socially” and, put most eloquently by my great aunt, “that shit will turn him gay.”*

My mom then deleted the photo and told Sam that he can wear whatever he wants to preschool, that it’s his decision. If he wants to wear pink shoes, he can wear pink shoes.

Sam then explained to her that he didn’t like them because they were pink, he liked them because they were “made out of zebras” and zebras are his favorite animal 🙂

What does it say about society when a group of adults could stand to take a lesson in humanity from a class of preschoolers?

This was from a facebook post that’s made its way through the internet, and HERE is a more in-depth bit of info on it 🙂

 

Mixed Feelings.

So I talk about my stories a bit more than would probably be considered ‘cool’, but it’s interesting, and I have a good number of people who are pretty much my ‘following’ on the internet, who I recognize their pennames and message back and forth with them. 

It’s just a thing, that’s all. 

So I have internet friends who talk to me most when I post new chapters (conditional friendship? Yes, but I don’t exactly read their stories if they have them up…), but regularly get reviews and comments from other people. 

(Shocker)

And most times it’s pretty positive things, and that’s fantastic, and sometimes it’s just a “Good job! Update soon!” bit of almost-whatever that doesn’t tell me much, and sometimes I get these amazing paragraphs of insight. 

Sometimes paragraphs of ‘Okay, this was good, here’s my thoughts on it, some good some bad’ and sometimes that’s even better than the reviews full of nothing more than amazement at my godly ability to write and sometimes make people cry and laugh. 

But fairly recently I got a review that I had mixd feelings on. 

Less so now, but it gave me a variety of feels, so Imma talk about it. 

In my story “And I Wake Up” (A Torchwood Season 3 fix-it, because if you’re into Torchwood and have seen the end of Season 3, you know it needs fixin’) (Summary in link, check it out) my most recent chapter (4) has a part where my mc (Main Character) goes a bit insane. 

This is understandable due to the fact that he keeps getting shot. 

The reviewer said that perhaps I should have a warning for torture, or graphic violence since (s)he had to skim through it, and it was more disturbing due to the somewhat temporary body issues my mc has, and this is what has me conflicted:

It’s not graphic. 

The ‘graphic’ part is “He raised his arm and pulled the trigger” with mad ravings in between. 

Okay, there is some finger biting, and that could be graphic, so I understand that, but without copying the review here it was the shooting that was the reviewer’s problem. 

I included a trigger-warning (haha, puns) in both my archive of our own (or Ao3) post and my fanfiction.net post, because you know what? Far enough. I don’t agree at all wit the graphicness thing, or at least not with what the reviewer was categorizing as ‘graphic violence’ but it could be that I have a different outlook on what consists of ‘graphic violence’

You may ask at this point, where be the mixed feelings matey? (if you’re a pirate)

Well… 

Part of me is delighted that my writing impacted this person so much that they had to skim. 

And then I get a bit angry that they’re missing on so much insight in the skimming part, but then I kind of swing back into delight because HELLO! I wrote something intending for it to be maybe a bit disturbing and worrying and someone read it and found it VERY disturbing! That’s a writing VICTORY!

So much success!

I get super excited when people get extreme feelings from my writing, you have no idea. 

I’m practically giggly when someone admits through a comment or review that some part of my writing made them cry, and part of me is happy because it means my own getting emotional (and crying myself) over the scene was super effective, and the rest of me is ecstatic because I MADE YOU FEEL SOMETHING WITHOUT YOUR PERMISSION! 

Especially since I’m pretty sure most of my stories are feel-good kind of stories. So hearing that my stories upset some part of you is amazing in a way that is so, SO conflicting!

It’s like you’re telling me that your dog or cat of gerbil died… and then you won the lottery. 

I just don’t know what to focus on. 

So this review saying that they enjoy my story, “oh and here’s a suggestion because you gave me unexpected feelings” is just.. 

GAH!

It’s ridiculous how much I enjoy feedback, positive or negative (edit: yes I do like negative feedback, but only if you’re constructive. I don’t appreciate “YOU SUCK JUST BECAUSE! BLAGH!” feedback, because then you’re an ass and I just can’t appreciate farts). 

But then, it’s a bit like dog owners who say ‘thanks’ when someone says how pretty their dog is (Lexy.)

(That thanks is ridiculous no matter how you try to rationalize it.)

But I made the story, I had it’s plot-lines percolating in my mind for months before I got down to writing it, and it’s fantastic having people say “Hey, you did good, I look forward to more! Cheers!”

So yeah, mixed feelings. 

Anyone else? 

No? 

I’m just crazy…? 

Well, Cheers anyway 😀

 

 

My Solution to not Knitting

So, recently I was shown this video through an author who was, at the time, writing about a wood-carver and how he made drop spindles.

He (the character) grew up in an area where it wasn’t strange to know how to use a drop spindle, and the author provided a link to show what a drop spindle looks like, as well as showing how to use one.

And I think it would be cool.

I have coloured wool from an abandoned arts project I was planning on doing, but couldn’t figure out what I would make a picture of (trust me, it sounds stupid but I don’t want to explain it, if you’re really that curious ask in comments and I’ll explain), and all I would need is a drop spindle.

These things can come cheap, and if it’s the kind of hobby that I want to continue doing but with a better drop spindle, then I can get a better, fancier, more expensive one if I want.

I’ve tried knitting, and don’t have the patience (or apparently the ability to keep the mental how-to in my head long enough to be able) to knit for more than one day.

I admire my friends and family who CAN knit, but it is not for me.

But…

But what if I could make wool?

Then… Then things would be different.

“Cool scarf sis, I believe that’s mine.”

“What? No, I made it, my scarf, I can make you one later.”

“Noooooo…. I got the wool, I made it into yarn, MY SCARF! BWAHAHA! And you thought I was being NICE letting you use my hours and hours of long work!”

So I decided to tell my Mom about this decision of mine, and I explained to her that I wasn’t much into knitting…

We talked about it a bit, and then, in my bid to make sure this sounds like a fantastic idea… I made a booboo. A tiny one.

“Besides, I really can’t take up knitting. If this house has any more yarn in it it’ll explode!”

Oh, the look Mom gave me…

Anyway, I’ll post pictures of what will undoubtedly be knotted and lumpy yarn, and live in hope that these pictures will soon be of regular, non-lumpy/knotted yarn.

Cheers!

(Lexy, If I make enough of it for you to use, I would like any possible future scarf to be mine, but in the time it would take you to make one, I would likely have enough practice and time to make you more, and in your colour of choice. Keep that in mind. :D)