starlady: roy in the sunset at graveside (no rest for the wicked)
Yoinked from [personal profile] were_duck and [personal profile] longwhitecoats.

Fanworks! I love them! And despite thinking about vids constantly (hello, vidders I've recently subscribed to!) it feels like it's been a dog's age since I've posted anything. (This isn't actually true, but like I said, it feels that way. Particularly for fic.) So:

I currently have 47 works archived at the AO3, including fic and vids. Pick a number from 1 (the most recent) to 47 (the first thing I posted), and I'll tell you three things I currently like about it!

starlady: Ramona Flowers wearing her delivery goggles (ramona flowers is awesome)
Text of an email from one of my awesome roommates, sent yesterday afternoon:

Subj: I'm eating in the law school

and right next to me are a couple of profs who are talking in COMPLETE MYSTIFICATION about one guy's daughter. I quote:

"She gave me this big compliment, she called me 'Dad-tor'. No, it's-- I guess it's the NEW Doctor Who? She's a complete devotee."

"I've never heard of it, but apparently there's this thing called... Tumblr? And she has all these friends? I've looked at it once or twice, and now I understand why my daughter never goes to bed on time."

"She follows this show called Supernatural. There's all this stuff on it that makes NO SENSE to me."

"Prof A: She uses this thing called Soundstage to make things with her friend.
Prof B: So she's never actually met this friend?
Prof A: Yeah, it's pretty wild."

"This new BBC show called 'Sherlock'. It's some kind of parody of Sherlock Holmes, I guess?"

I'm trying really hard not to laugh at them because that would be rude.
starlady: Feminist Hulk ponder capitalism's complicity in patriarchy: Hulk smash for free (hulk smash for free)
There will be actual content again soon, I promise.

When Fics Take on a Life of Their Own (4359 words) by faviconstoriesfortravellers
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Critical Theory RPF, Feminist Ryan Gosling
Rating: Mature
Warning: Author Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Relationships: Michael Fassbender/James McAvoy
Characters: Feminist Ryan Gosling - Character, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Original Female Character, Fanfic Writer
Summary: A fanfic writer and Feminist Ryan Gosling discuss celebrity culture, gender and theory, and the political perils of Fassavoy fic.

Without taking any kind of epistemological stance on RPF as a phenomenon, I will say this is definitely a fic to be read and contemplated by people in fandom--our peccadilloes and our predilections and the reasons for all of them turned over and exposed to inspection. It's knowing and self-critical and consciously caught between and a rock and a hard place, and also frequently hilarious. (Feminist Ryan Gosling will do that.)

The follow-up rec is not a fic but a post, namely hey girl it's feminist fandom by [personal profile] metaphortunate:

Everybody makes their own erotic compromises with the patriarchy. We're going to die while the world is still fucked. We can't put our libidos on hold until everything is sorted out. And to sort out our libidos we'd not only have to sort out the world but we'd also have to hop in our imaginary time machine and go back and fix it so that we grew up in a fair world where people cared about what happened to people who weren't rich white men and that is also going to happen on the twelfth of never so you will forgive me if I say that there is nothing wrong with the way we live with our oppression by eroticizing it.

I would wager that all or most of us have had the experience of enjoying some piece of media that our higher cognitive functions find intensely problematic, and like the man said, I would hope that we not judge ourselves too harshly, or solely on the basis of what is said or even done in public about sex and sexuality. (Remind me to tell you the story of the prof I'm teaching for dropping surprise!Greek love into the lecture on the Hellenization of the Roman Empire into lecture yesterday. Hilarious, if you're me and knew what was coming.) But hoping for that degree of absolution doesn't absolve us from the obligation to keep questioning where we're at, as M and this fic both make clear.

Note to interested readers: neither of these pieces contain any actual RPF.
starlady: Charles/Erik: "Are you ready for this?" "Let's find out." (we are together at last though far apart)
Having spent way too much time this weekend trawling through the kink meme(s), it's fascinating to me how you can basically track the infiltration of the alpha/beta/omega trope (but usually in its "pure" alpha/omega form) into XMFC fandom via which prompts on the meme get filled over time. (Someone could totally do a fascinating longitudinal study on the infiltration/cross-pollination of phrases and motifs in XMFC fic over time, incidentally.)

I'd never heard of this trope before, but in light of it going around my various r-lists in various shades of raised eyebrows recently, I thought I'd share this rather consciously revisionist take on the whole idea:

The Omegaist Mystique (2754 words) by faviconPookaseraph
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: X-Men: First Class (2011)
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warning: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Erik Lehnsherr/Charles Xavier
Characters: Erik Lehnsherr, Charles Xavier, David Haller, Angel Salvadore
Summary: Erik meets Charles at a local Omegaist chapter and slowly gets to know the man; they discuss Omegaist philosophy, single parenthood, and life. Erik slowly finds himself falling for the unassuming beta, and wishing they could have more.

Apparently the alpha/omega trope is often associated with werewolves. I rec the following because it offers a (I think) quite interesting take on embodiment and the construction of gender roles in the context of werewolves without going anywhere near alpha/omega territory:

Skin Deep (29412 words) by faviconmanic_intent
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: X-Men: First Class (2011)
Rating: Explicit
Warning: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Erik Lehnsherr/Charles Xavier, Emma Frost/Sebastian Shaw
Characters: Erik Lehnsherr, Charles Xavier, Emma Frost, Sebastian Shaw, Hank McCoy, Angel Salvadore, Sean Cassidy, Alex Summers
Summary: Written for the kmeme, Everyone-is-a-werewolf AU. Erik happens upon a seemingly abandoned mansion in Westchester during a full moon and finds an insanely clueless werewolf living in isolation.

Do read the sequel, In Escrow.

Note to interested readers: Neither of these stories have significant Jewish content.
starlady: the OTW logo with text "fandom is my fandom" (fandom^2)
Dept. of Oh Snap
New Delicious has killed old Delicious.
[personal profile] bookshop, reaction post
[personal profile] epershand, Pinboard elving exchange brainstorm post (soon to be a reality)
[personal profile] facetofcathy, rundown part 2
[personal profile] unjapanologist, fannish bookmarking service = want, also, Diigo censors bookmarks
[personal profile] somnolentblue, linkspam

Other people have had a lot of good things to say about this; I've been very happy with Pinboard since I joined six months ago (I'm starlady on Pinboard; also, I highly recommend adding the Pinboard buttons to your browser bar), and the owner [ profile] pinboard has been nothing but welcoming and responsive to fannish users. Yes, it costs money, and I know it is therefore beyond the reach of some people, which I find incredibly frustrating and obviously makes it not the best long-term solution as things stand. But I'm by no means wild about Diigo's silent censorship, TOS, deciding its users are spammers, and account deletion. I don't think AO3 bookmarks will ever be a replacement for Delicious, either, but I'm not averse to seeing them gain more functionality.

[personal profile] anatsuno has a link to a public Google document listing requested Pinboard features
and via [personal profile] copracat, the Great Delicious Migration spreadsheet

Dept. of Transformative Works
Speaking of the OTW, the Board Election chats have been scheduled.

Dept. of Miscellany
Alex Ross is just a fantastic writer in general.

I'm going to Minneapolis tomorrow and am basically completely unprepared. I'll see you when I see you.
starlady: the OTW logo with text "fandom is my fandom" (fandom^2)
H/t to [ profile] corneredangel, here, for this:

Is writing fan fiction different from writing a tie-in? Yes and no. The risks I can take are. In a tie-in, I am much more constrained in terms of writing sex. But I am much less constrained in terms of writing politics. I can say things to the broader society about the issues of the day, about war and peace, about race and sex, that I could never say in fandom without starting firestorms of wank. It's no longer possible to discuss those things in fandom without tons of abusive comments, whatever one's position, because the issues are too controversial and the Internet bullies on all sides are too abusive. We are going places on those issues in the tie-ins that I certainly would not dare go in fan fics!


The good thing about the tie-in is the much broader audience. Internet fandom, and especially LiveJournal/Dreamwidth fandom, for all that it likes to think it's diverse, isn't so much. It tends to be highly educated women, and disproportionately American women from the Northeast and California. Its culture is very specific and out of touch with the majority of fans of the show, especially for something like Stargate: Atlantis. How many people in LJ SGA fandom are men who are active-duty military? How many are over 50? How many consider themselves Christian, or are from rural areas? If I want to talk to a broad audience, to talk to a truly mixed audience in terms of gender, race, age, and region, a tie-in will reach a far more diverse group of people than fan fic will. Fan fic skews to female, liberal, and young.

--Jo Graham (interviewed in Transformative Works & Cultures vol. 5)

I don't even want to know what she thinks she can't say in SGA fic, and you couldn't get me to read those tie-in novels if you paid me. And as for her implications about fandom, my instinctive response is that she is wrong doesn't know whereof she speaks. I don't think anyone in fandom has ever claimed that fans are in any kind of cultural majority--which makes it all the more important, I think, that we not give problematic oppressive bullshit a free pass.
starlady: Anna Maria from PoTC at the helm: "bring me that horizon" (bring me that horizon)
L'shanah tovah! Eid mubarak!

Speaking of Eid, [community profile] eid_ka_chand is running its Eid-al-thon fanworks challenge, which is being sponsored to raise money for flood survivors in Pakistan. There's a little less than 48 hours left--if you can contribute a drabble, or a microvid, or some icons or meta focusing on Muslim characters in fandom, please do!

Also, [personal profile] wistfuljane is organizing a Most Awesome Asian Characters & Celebrities fest in honor of Trung Thu, the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival. Go check it out! Comment! Contribute!

And finally, the OTW will be hosting a one-year birthday party for the Archive of Our Own on September 13, midnight to midnight UTC. More details at the post--party attendees will get commemorative graphics and door prizes, and there will be cool new features launched too. I'll be there at some point myself.
starlady: animated uhura: set phasers to fabulous (set phasers to fabulously awesome)
Ensign Sue Must Die! Story by Clare Moseley, art by Kevin Bolk.

[personal profile] djkittycat pointed out the existence of this comic in the dealers' room at Otakon 2010 to me, and I will be forever grateful.

So, yes. This short but hilarious and pointed comic, still being serialized on the author's website, tells the story of one Ensign Mary Amethyst Star Enoby Aiko Archer Picard Janeway Sue and how she comes to join the crew of the Enterprise in the AOS timeline. You definitely won't get the humor unless you've been around fandom long enough to spot a Sue character a mile off, but if you are conversant with fandom and its clichés about self-insert characters, you will probably laugh your head off.

In the wake of the Mary Sue debate earlier this year, the comic seems even more pointed than otherwise, and in some ways seeing Ensign Sue in full color really reinforces some of the most cogent objections to Mary Sue, namely that she's a white girl's/woman's power fantasy. Less objectionably, she's also just ridiculous, and invidious too. Unquestionably, there need to be more awesome female characters of all possible races, backgrounds, orientations, bodies, in media. Mary Sue, however, is not always the best way to go about filling in that lack.
starlady: Aang with fire (aang can be asian & still save the world)
I've put up an offer for [ profile] help_pakistan:

Japanese to English translation, opening bid $10 -- Japanese to English manga translation of up to thirty (30) manga pages; this can be one manga of 30 pages, five manga of six pages, or any combination of pages that doesn't exceed 30. Doujinshi are fine; hentai is not. I am open to translating a few more pages if the bidding goes higher.

Bidding closes Saturday August 28th at 23:59 EST.

Help Pakistan banner featuring the Pakistani flag & text written in Arabic
starlady: the OTW logo with text "fandom is my fandom" (fandom^2)
I thought I might see some posts about the 20th anniversary of the ADA on my reading page today, but instead it's full of the awesome news that the Library of Congress has granted a DMCA exemption for vidders, media studies scholars, and cell phone jailbreakers! (Link goes to [community profile] otw_news, the DW mirror of the Organization for Transformative Works' blog). The OTW was the major proponent of the explicit language in the decision that acknowledges many aspects of vidding as fair use, so hooray for fair use, the OTW, and the LoC! \o/

More links about the decision, and the text itself, are collected here.

That said, let me just quote the last paragraph of the initial blog post (emphases mine):

One final note: because of the restrictiveness of the law, we have to do this all over again in two years. We need your stories to help, because the Copyright Office needs to see evidence of the need for an exemption: tell us why you need high-quality source to make your vids, why they are transformative, and/or why you don't use screen capture. You can comment, or email the OTW's Vidding Committee any time.

Fair use has to be defended, and the OTW can't do it without you, fans and vidders.
starlady: headphones on top of colorful buttons (music (makes the people))
I went to see Sea Wolf at the First Unitarian Church Sanctuary two Sundays ago. I really like Sea Wolf--they remind me of Blitzen Trapper by way of The Arcade Fire, or maybe the other way around, and they put on a show that for my money was really good; they are really energetic and committed live performers (related: I sometimes wish I were a bass player. Bass players always seem to be having the most fun, hanging in the back, wandering around the stage, rocking out). But it was about 100ª in the sanctuary even at 10 pm when their set ended, and I only lasted a few songs into the set by The Album Leaf before I walked out, because I was tired and completely uninvested in and unhooked by their music. The pre-concert email from R5 compared them to Sígur Ros, to which I can only, yeah, a downmarket English-speaking version. But the sanctuary was packed when I did leave, as it hadn't been for Sea Wolf, so what do I know?

I bought the new album by The New Pornographers, Together, and it is growing on me steadily, though it's not as good as Challengers. I also bought Owen Pallet's album Heartland (which says Final Fantasy on the case? I don't even know) and it is great, but not as good as his live sets. Owen, release a live album, please? And I scored the first of Sonic Youth's experimental 20thC classical music albums for $3, and it's really good, though my bird does not approve. For the record, all birds like music, and the ones we've had have had distinct musical tastes; the parrot likes classical music such as Mozart and Beethoven but also goes for anything with a strong beat like most of those songs in the playlist I posted last week; he particularly likes that Gaslight Anthem track. Our late parakeet Sunny, by contrast, didn't care about Mozart but loved Bartok. And Janelle Monáe's new album comes out Tuesday, I'm so excited.

starlady: (justice)
I was just going to leave this lie, because I find the arguments of Diana Gabaldon and other pro writers against fanfiction to be boring, untenable, offensive and deeply un-original, but there are some good posts being written by other people that really do merit linkage.

Via [personal profile] jonquil, Rudyard Kipling says you're full of crap, Diana, GRRM! Also see my comment and its thread in [community profile] queering_holmes on fannishness in ancient Europe. I am dead serious.

[personal profile] cofax7's linkspam yesterday linked to Nick Matamas' post eviscerating some of George R. R. Martin's whackier anti-fanfic arguments, but check out the original linkpost too; cofax has a great few paragraphs of analysis between the links.

Hilarious and on-point as always, [personal profile] thefourthvine posts some good reasons for pros to fear fic and introduces Captain Copyright, who seriously needs to be a Yuletide fandom. Given the power dynamics involved, I think Captain Copyright's archnemesis is Fangirl; when Fanboy is introduced mid-series it throws the Captain into a dark night of his heroic soul.

Cat Valente has a great post from her midlist author's perspective dealing with some of the more abstract points involved (hint: she's for fic).

Last but not least, [personal profile] kaigou has a poll asking writers about writing fic, with follow-ups here and here.

And since this is a post about fandom, I recommend [personal profile] bookshop's post on fandom and women to everyone, particularly those who've been following the recent imbroglio over what happened at WinCon 2008: [personal profile] inkstone's post on the whole thing is a good digest; this followup is also relevant.

And now that I've successfully worked myself into a lather of WTF, world, why!? I am going to post something happy next.


starlady: Raven on a MacBook (Default)

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