Monday, July 24th, 2017 03:43 pm
The weather doesn't know if it's coming or going and neither does Kheldar. One minute we're having torrential downpours and the next it's basking on the balcony in the sunshine weather.

I've had a busy weekend and a stupidly busy Monday and I suspect I'm going home late because I'm not in tomorrow and there are things that sadly can't be left until Wednesday. But at least this week's remote build instructor is absolutely lovely to work with.

In other news I am definitely spending too much time visiting coffee shops. Today's barista didn't even ask my name :)

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Saturday, July 22nd, 2017 06:41 pm
Some more sad news for Doctor Who fans (well, of the Classic variety at least): Deborah Watling has died, aka companion Victoria Waterfield. A lot of people have linked to the clip from Tomb, but it is such a beautiful scene, so I'm going to do it as well:



(Forgive the embed outside the cut this once.)

Victoria was a companion that I always liked the idea of more than what they actually did with her most of the time, but Debbie Watling always seemed pretty lovely, and she had a very good relationship and rapport with both Patrick and Frazer. My old telly adventures have also led to me watching her (at least briefly) appear in The Power Game, along with her father, Jack, who was a regular (a favour which she returned in DW, getting him cast as Professor Travers in two of the Yeti stories).
Friday, July 21st, 2017 10:48 pm
Just when I was in need of a calming distraction... an unexpected Neko Atsume update appears. I've got to admit that I'd mostly stopped playing but given the number of conference call requests that the team mailbox got bombarded with this afternoon now seems like a good time to start checking in on the Neko Atsume yard again.

In real life feline news Kheldar is thoroughly disappointed by the amount of water that has fallen from the skies today. He has apparently spent most of the day asleep under a bed and is only willing to venture outside now that the rain has slowed from torrential to the occasional bit of drizzle. It is very, very wet underpaw and frankly that's just not acceptable for an elderly cat.
Friday, July 21st, 2017 09:52 am
For anyone who might be interested, Pixar has Pixar in a Box on Khan Academy.

It's primarily directed at film writing, but I think it can be used for all types of narrative storytelling. I've been listening to The Art of Storytelling video series.

It starts out with "We are all storytellers," (I'm there still) which I think is an admirable point and has a number of their creators talking about their amateur efforts and how they got started, like Betty and Veronica fashion fanart. :)

It leads to characterization and story structure, and while I don't know that visual language is going to be terribly helpful to us print writers, it might give good ideas for descriptions of scenery to go around dialogue. There are also lessons and activities that you can do, should you choose.

(I can't find closed captions on Khan Academy, though. That's my one quibble thus far.)

One of my favorite pieces of writing advice is still this graphic: Pixar's 22 Rules of Storytelling.

No, I'm not saying they have to be YOUR rules too. I'm just saying I find the list as a useful set of way to help me go through one of my stories and figure out what's not working and what I need to do to make it work. Or sometimes, for me to just let go and stopy worrying at something, and maybe come back to it later.
Friday, July 21st, 2017 09:46 am
... to [personal profile] grondfic and [personal profile] kerkevik_2014! I hope you both have an excellent day!
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Friday, July 21st, 2017 08:13 am
More things I have learnt from physio - mainly notes to self. I suspect [personal profile] hagar_972 and [personal profile] taennyn may have useful experience here, where I'm just starting out on the same journey they've already been on.

Muscles in the thigh - VMO, lateralis, the big quad one, the sartorius one across, adductors on the inside, abductors on the outside. VMO needs extra strengthening due to hypermobility. The small stabilising muscles tend to give up, then the big muscles compensate, and that's why my hamstrings get tight all the time. Then the hip/bum ones like glute max and glute mede also need help, particularly the latter.

Making sure things activate in the right order is hard. If the lateralis activates before the VMO instead of at the same time, then my kneecap slides sideways and that's one of the reasons it hurts. Trying to activate the VMO first will retrain it so they both go at the same time.
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Friday, July 21st, 2017 05:11 am
I first saw Jez in 1994.

He was in a newspaper article pinned to the kitchen wall in my friend Alison's house. It was about 'Keele vampires' - he'd gone to the premiere of Interview with the Vampire with some friends in full goth kit.

"That's Jeremy" my friend's mother said. "Tori's boyfriend". Tori was Alison's older (and intimidatingly cool) sister. Her boyfriend looked even more impressive. In 1994 I was not cool, although I did own a pair of doc martens I had lovingly painted myself in glitter paint, including a gigantic sparkly silver witch flying through the air atop a broomstick, which I look back on with affection. I wore very bright tights to school and everyone thought I was weird. And not in a cool way.

The years went by. Jez and I didn't really know each other, although we were in the same place occasionally. I heard a lot of gossip about him. He seemed even cooler - very gothic, very charming, a bit of a womanizer.

I still wasn't cool, although my eyeliner improved and I acquired a pair of tight tartan trousers which I wore with more panache than I realised. Then Jez broke up with Tori at the end of university, and I moved away from Berkshire anyway to go to university myself. We lost touch.

Ten years later, we met again. This time it was in a pub in Oxford. It was at a live action role playing game. I walked in and a friend grabbed me.

"Who is that bloke?" she hissed. "The new one in the top hat. He's gorgeous"

It was Jeremy.

He was still too cool for me. Still rather gothic - he was wearing skin tight velvet trousers, a velvet waistcoat with bells on it and a top hat with bright scarfs wrapped around it. No shirt but a very impressive six pack. There was a little ripple of swooning women around the room as he walked across it. But I remembered him from my teenage years, and that was nice, and I'd only just moved back down south after many years in Scotland, was unemployed and bored and so the prospect of talking to anyone was good.

I asked him if he'd like to get coffee. Unusually, he wasn't in work the next day so suggested G&Ds for milkshakes. We met at 2 pm.

At 2 am we were still talking as we wandered around Oxford. We got locked in Christchurch Meadows as the sun went down and had to climb out over the wall. We sat on a bridge with blossom falling down on us and talked about bottling this moment. I remember feeling light headed, and oddly not insecure. It was easy and happy and right.

It hasn't always been easy or happy or right. God knows, we've had our ups and downs over the years. Some pretty massive ones. But somehow we've got through them. Somehow we've found our way back to each other.

We first talked about marriage within a week of getting together. But first it was too soon, and then there was drama coming from elsewhere, and then I was crazy, and then he wasn't sure, and then...

...well, there were always a lot of reasons. Looking back, though, I'm glad we didn't get married then. It took a while for us to be ready, to grow up, to find the life we wanted to share. It's only really been in the last two years that we've done that - thank you, Glasgow, and thank you Glasgow housing market - and now is, I think, the right time.

I don't find Jez intimidatingly cool anymore. He also would say he looks considerably less impressive without his shirt on, and I've not seen him wear a top hat in years. Less goth, more tweed now. But he still has the brightest smile and wonderful eyes. He's still my Jez. And I love him.

Countdown until we leave for the grand wedding adventure trip - four hours.

It's going to be fantastic.
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Wednesday, July 19th, 2017 08:01 pm
ETA: Logged out and gone to sleep. Good night, all!

I'm going to be trying to figure out what city I should be setting my urban fantasy in. (Or at least, what it should be an analogue to, geography-wise.)

I'll be on Discord for a couple of hours, if anyone wants to join me:

https://discord.gg/w9PK3Yg

(This time I'll remember to edit the post to say when I log off Discord!)
Wednesday, July 19th, 2017 06:19 pm
To start at the end, as it were, before I forget everything. The theme for this week in my old telly adventures seems to have mainly been Bad Stuff Happening to Planes.*

Ransom, Secret Army & Department S )
Monday, July 17th, 2017 10:59 am
The best part of the Doctor Who casting announcement is that it opens up EVEN MORE amazing possibilities for horrifyingly beautiful St. Trinian's crossovers.

"Oh, Beverly!" called Miss Fritton from her office, leaning over and waving one hand. Beverly could see one her out of the corner of one eye.

"Yeah, miss!"

"What's that little knobbly thingummy you're pointing at the door?"

"It's a sonic screwdriver, miss!"

"What's it for?"

"Nothing, miss!" There was Dalek invasion and the First Years were busy lobbing explosives from the tower while Beverly - the Doctor, really, but she'd been undercover for years and thought of herself as Beverly still - remodulated the alarm system to broadcast a frequency that would short-circuit their disruptor beams. The Daleks, not the First Years.

Though Beverly privately thought the First Years infinitely more dangerous to let loose upon the human race than the Daleks, but she did have standards after all, and centuries of enmity with the Daleks to uphold.

"So what you're saying," said Miss Fritton, appearing in her doorway with an empty bottle of vodka in one hand, "is that we're out of vodka and you forgot to stock up, is that it?"

"Get the gin, miss," said Beverly, holding back a sigh.
Monday, July 17th, 2017 03:35 pm
  1. I'm quietly pleased by the Doctor Who casting announcement. I just hope that the writers can step up to it and give her some really good scripts.

  2. Apparently last Friday marked a year of me playing Pokémon Go? I'm playing it less than I used to but I'm still pottering around with it so either that's a hopeless addiction or it's a game that manages to keep long-term player interested.

  3. Went for cocktails at the Rummer on Saturday to celebrate a friend's 40th birthday. It was good evening but I should not be allowed access to both friends and internet at the same time. It turns out that if I wave Etsy pages at people saying things like, "I really like this coat," the general response is "That's awesome, you should buy it." So I've got a fancy new coat on the way to me...
Monday, July 17th, 2017 11:43 am
Random and interesting theory.

Human beings are not motivated by being good, or being bad, or being greedy.

Human beings are largely motivated by habit and short cuts. Read more... )
Saturday, July 15th, 2017 09:42 pm
If there's one thing I'll risk signing up for, even in summer, and even verging on Yuletide, it's Remix! And someone has set up a replacement for the much-lamented RemixRedux at [community profile] remixrevival and sign ups are open at AO3 from now until the 30th. If you're also into remixing, or want to be, head over there now!

This version also allows art/art remixes (and art/fic, fic/art remixes) if that would interest you more than writing. (I went for fic/fic; I love the whole thing of writing remixes and being remixed in writing.) It seems to allow origfic as well, and there will still be a Remix Madness collection, when anyone can throw their works into the ring without signing up, which is about as low pressure you can get in a writing exchange. :-)