starlady: Raven on a MacBook (Default)
Via [ profile] eumelia, former LJ early adopter account holder void-star on LJ, malware, internet advertising and YOU. Holy sketchy corporate decisions, Batman! 

So, yes. I was planning to make a post to say that the tags on this journal are no longer entirely up to date; I retagged my book posts at DW recently to include author's names in tags, and have no plans to do the same thing here on my LJ because it's tedious beyond belief. Tags will be current between DW and LJ going forward, of course. Also, I went back and transcribed my few voice posts, as well as pasting the transcriptions into the DW entries, in preparation for the voice posts themselves being deleted from the servers within the next six months. (I say "um" on the cell phone a lot, particularly when it's 2am and I'm tired.)

After last time, I let my LJ paid account lapse; I'm now considering removing (some?) content from LJ altogether. The logical place to start would be my earliest entries, which are now almost entirely eyes-only. I have no intention of deleting discussion posts, however, and I will continue to crosspost here, since I don't want to impose my own personal decisions about LJ on other LJ users.

I don't have any Dreamwidth invite codes at the moment, but there's always [site community profile] dw_codesharing for those considering other journaling services. And for those out there who read this blog because they know me personally but don't have LJ accounts (you know who you are ^_^), I'd much prefer to have you at [personal profile] starlady.
starlady: Raven on a MacBook (Default)
Most of my fanworks can be found via my AO3 profile: [ profile] starlady.

This statement constitutes blanket permission to remix, record, translate, scanlate, and/or transform anything I've written. A link to your transformative work is always appreciated!

I generally follow AO3 policy on warnings; namely, I warn for rape and/or noncon, major character death, and graphic violence. I also will warn for topics that may be triggering on an as-needed basis. If you have a question about the content of any of my stories, or a concern about the warnings or lack thereof on same, please email or pm me and I will do my best to address your concerns respectfully.

My translations of manga series may be found using the links in this journal's sidebar.

AMVs )

Fanfic )

Vids )
starlady: Gryffinclaw: "Don't believe what you're told. Double check."  (question everything)
What an epic tale of near-disaster, close shaves, and epic logistical failure on the grad school application front I could unfold for you, dear readers. But the story's not finished yet, so it will have to wait until tomorrow.

In the meantime, via [personal profile] inkstone on Twitter, [ profile] holzman discusses the white privilege inherent in some permutations of the reaction to the Peter Watts imbroglio. I have not been following the matter at all other than noting that it happened, so let me be unequivocal, although a day late and a dollar short: What happened to Peter Watts happens to people routinely, but should not happen to anyone, no matter their race or citizenship. Nor should borders be places in which people attempting to cross them involuntarily and automatically surrender their rights, both civil, legal, and human (which they, or at least the U.S. borders, essentially are now).

On a tangentially related note, I received this holiday card from Delta Airlines today. I note that while other cities are represented by architectural landmarks, Johannesburg is accompanied by an image of a giraffe and Tokyo has an image, from the rear, of a Japanese woman in kimono amongst bamboo trees. Mm, stereotype much? Last year's card from Northwest was much better, but that was pre-merger.

ETA: Via [personal profile] synecdochic, LiveJournal's next code push will a) make the gender field in the profile mandatory; and b) make the gender choice binary (i.e. either male or female). The post at Denise's journal has the relevant links to changelog and to the LJ feedback form.

Oh, LiveJournal. More and more I think that I'm just not comfortable giving them my business, let alone posting my content there (you'll notice I have never posted any fanworks to my LJ account; only links to them at other sites). I think 2010 will probably be my last year as a paid account holder.

ETA 2: I encourage people to consider DreamWidth as an alternative. There are invite codes available for the taking at [site community profile] dw_codesharing; no need to give anyone your email address.
starlady: (coraline)
First off, I still have three two Dreamwidth invite codes. Leave a comment to this post, or send me a private message on LJ with your email, if you would like one. Slight preference will be given to mutual LJ or RL friends, but I think on Wednesday morning I will release my codes into the wild if no one claims them before then.

So I went up to New York yesterday for the "International Graphic Novelists" segment of the PEN World Voices Festival. Over the course of three panels I heard Neil Gaiman, Emmanuel Guibert, David Polonsky, Shaun Tan, and Tatsumi Yoshihiro speak about comics and their work. It was quite an interesting set of panels (though I was sad that there didn't seem to be much crossover, and that I forgot my copy of The Graveyard Book to be signed, and that Kinokuniya didn't have any of Tatsumi's work in Japanese), though I was sort of miffed that out of the nine people total who appeared on the stage, only one of the interviewers and the interpreter were female. Alison Bechdel and Fun Home were name-checked in the second panel, but come on, where's the gender equity? Comics aren't just by (or for) men.
  • Both Gaiman and Tatsumi admitted that in some ways they miss the old days when comics were hated and feared; as Gaiman said, "there's a lot of freedom when you're creating in the gutter." Not, however, that the state of gekiga in Japan is really much better these days; when asked about it, Tatsumi attributed it to the lack of a readers' revolution in manga consumption, and lamented the freedom that the "rambunctiousness" of the weekly magazines afforded before their demise in the 70s.
  • While the subject of politics in comics, and in art in general, was more danced around than addressed, Gaiman did say that he thought that "At any point that you are saying things that other people do not want said--writing about people others don't want written about--it's absolutely political." Tan and most of the rest said that they thought that any time you write about people, the political is always there, but Tan said that he thought the responsibility of the artist is honesty, and that politics flows from that. Tan also said that the act of drawing is about defamiliarizing yourself with the everyday, to take nothing for granted, which he finds very similar to the immigrant experience. David Polonsky remarked that the artist's job is to make sense of things that most people only feel.
  • Tatsumi's monumental manga memoir 漫画漂流 has just been published in English as A Drifting Life (flipped, unfortunately, but otherwise gorgeous), but when asked he admitted that he changed the protagonist's name and the names of people in his life so that he could be completely honest about the events of his life. He cited the Japanese 私小説 (I-novel) tradition as precedent for this, but I was reminded of what Guibert said about biography (he's done graphic novel biographies of two his friends), which is that in a hidden way it is autobiography, since it's filtered through the biographer.
  • Shaun Tan said some of the most interesting things of the afternoon, to my mind, when he explicitly situated his work in the space between graphic novels and picture books--his wordless graphic novel The Arrival is printed like a picture book, but has no words (so that it would be universal, he said, and to lengthen the viewing experience) and uses panel layouts at times--which he said he lifted from The Snowman. He also said that he was inspired by photo albums, which tell a choronogical story but lack narration, which one fills in as one looks through them, so that the story resides somewhere between you and the photos themselves.
  • Similarly, Guibert said he was inspired to create The Photographer after noting the similarity between panel layouts and contact sheets of undeveloped photos, though, as he said, when photographs and drawings are juxtaposed (as he does in his work), "there's always one trying to kill the other."

They sold out of The Arrival right before I got to the sale table, so I bought Shaun Tan's new book Tales from Outer Suburbia for him to sign instead. I read it while on my way home on the train (side note: I ♥ trains so much), and I was utterly charmed. I've liked Tan since I first encountered his illustrations in Pretty Monsters, but he himself gives Kelly Link a run for her money in his strategic deployment of oddness, in his twisting reality just a bit differently from what we know. I'd say that TfOS is suitable for older children (8+ maybe? I don't know about children), since one of its stories, "The Amnesia Machine," is the most trenchant two-page criticism of George W. Bush's administration (or of John Howard's government, since Tan is Australian) that I've ever encountered, and its mordant humor only heightens its creepy effect.

I also went with some friends to the redhead, which is an amazing (and pretty decently priced) New Southern restaurant on the east side just south of Union Square. The fried chicken was glorious, my cocktail quite tasty, and the bacon peanut brittle pretty damn delicious. Check it out if you get the chance.
starlady: (shiny)
My friend and gentle translation taskmaster [personal profile] lian is co-mod of the community [community profile] housewarming_dw, which is a virtual party for those of us DW users who can't get to a party IRL. The house opens tomorrow, go check it out! I will be there for a bit, and I hope to see you, too.

Heh, "virtual." Did you ever notice how no one uses that word anymore? Web 2.0 isn't virtual, it's just a different kind of real.
starlady: (coraline)
First off, some Dreamwidth-related news: I have granted all active mutual friends access to my DW journal via OpenID (so, Of course my DW and LJ accounts are mirrors, but this enables you to comment on my DW posts in your LJ guise, once you create your OpenID.

That said, I will have some (not sure how many) DW invite codes to hand out on April 30, when Dreamwidth enters open beta. If any one would like an invite code, please leave a comment to this entry or message me.

Rubinstein, Julian. Ballad of the Whiskey Robber. New York: Little, Brown and Co., 2004.

I'd heard good things about this book upon its original publication, and I managed to score a copy for $3.99 as part of Borders' ongoing "let's sell all our stock in a futile attempt to stave off bankruptcy though it was our stock that made us better than B&N" sale. Semi-annual my foot. At any rate, Rubinstein, a reporter at large, recounts the dozen-year saga of modern Hungary's most notorious thief, Attila Ambrus, epithet "the Whiskey Robber" due to his habit of knocking off banks, post offices and travel agencies while more or less completely sloshed. Rubinstein is a hugely entertaining writer--I laughed out loud at multiple points in his book, which isn't something that happens often--though his strength is at least partly his pitch-perfect timing of pithy phrases, even cliches. It's sort of like sitting down in a bar with a friend who tells good stories. I've actually been to Hungary, and spent a few days in Budapest, which gave the story an addtional resonance for me: while the action the book recounts was ended by the time of my visit, it's certainly a cogent reminder of all the realities tourists almost never know exist in countries they visit, let alone see. I think anyone can sympathize with modern Hungary's tribulation-filled transition to capitalism and democracy, as well as with the transparent way the Hungarian elites went easy on themselves and came down hard on outsiders to the system.

Troll's Eye View: A Book of Villainous Tales. Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling, eds. New York: Viking, 2009.

My library came through for me with this book, and while the fact that it's aimed at "middle readers" means that it's rather slight, the star-studded cast of authors overall delivers. Among others, Peter S. Beagle, Delia Sherman, Garth Nix, Ellen Kushner, Neil Gaiman, Catherynne M. Valente (yuki_onna) and Kelly Link turned in excellent efforts. If I had to pick one favorite story, I'd say Link's "The Cinderella Game" and Sherman's "Wizard's Apprentice" were my favorites, because they both completely inverted the distinction between heroes and villains: in these stories, everyone is both.
starlady: (coraline)
I randomly won today's OpenID lottery and have received a DreamWidth account. Eee!

So, yes: on DW, I am [personal profile] starlady. Thanks to DW's lovely import function, I have essentially cloned myself. I haven't really made any firm decisions as to whether I will (now or ever) migrate permanently, but I will probably post a majority of entries from DW from now on, since the crosspost feature is so sexy. Also: nested tags! ZOMG!
  • Translations will probably be Q1 on LJ, with comments enabled on both DW and LJ.
  • Reviews and random musings will probably be Q1 on DW, probably with comments only enabled on DW.
  • Personal entries may stay entirely on LJ, or wherever the majority of the people who can read my personal entries are at the time.
All of this is of course subject to revision (particularly if I should ever feel the need to associate one journal with my legal name).

In the meantime, go forth and dream on! All you need to do is use OpenID.


starlady: Raven on a MacBook (Default)

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