swordage: Shockwave getting Rickrolled. (tf rickroll)
Sooo I have a non-fic journal now, over at [personal profile] lex. Feel free to check it out. I post there sporadically, usually with utterly ridiculous drivel, but sometimes with bits of writing. I'm working on a couple epic stories with [livejournal.com profile] spacehussy and it's frustrating to finish a glorious scene and be unable to post it, so I put up little bits over there when I think of it.

I'm still figuring out how personal I want to get with it, but basically I consider [personal profile] swordage to be for finished fic only, so literally everything else will be on [personal profile] lex. Please excuse me if I reply with the wrong one at some point.
swordage: Vulcan hand salute. (x star trek)
I want to tell you a story about Christmas.

When my parents divorced, Dad was left with almost nothing. He had to move out and saw my brother and I only on weekends. I was six or so and sweetly innocent about the world. My mother was not terribly interested in entertaining children for Christmas, so we were with Dad in his little apartment (he'd gotten a three-bedroom so we'd each have our own rooms when we were there overnight, but it was still tiny) and we slept fitfully until finally Christmas morning came and we raced into the living room and found -

A lonely, bare wooden plant stand and a small handful of presents, not a bit of greenery in sight. There was a note taped to it. "This was the closest I could find to a tree," Santa wrote. "It will do just fine! Have a merry Christmas! Love, Santa."

Santa loved me enough to make do. He cared enough to find something that would be tree-like, something he could top with a little tin-foil star. I don't remember what presents I got, but I remember that lonesome little plant stand. And last year, when there was no room for a tree and too much depression in the house to get into the consumerism of the season, I dangled two ornaments from a floor lamp and wrapped it in tinsel. I stayed up all night cleaning enough for us to sit together by it, and I wrapped presents and stacked them so carefully to make them look bigger. I did this not out of a desperate need to fit a certain mental picture of Christmas - I did it because I love my family enough to make do.

I believe in the magic of Christmas. I believe in presents appearing overnight. I believe in the joy of crinkling paper and the smell of pine and pie. I believe in the beauty of carols and snow. And I believe a plant stand or a floor lamp or a ratty old chair can become a beautiful Christmas tree.

Happy holidays, everyone. I hope you find joy in this season.
swordage: rotf Soundwave (tf Megatron)
I've been pondering what the Cybertronian language might be like. I'm no linguist, let me disclaim that first - but I am fascinated by the fundamental differences between organic and inorganic species. I mean, on Earth there is a physical barrier between inside and outside of a person, but for a Cybertronian that distinction is significantly blurrier (particularly if you ascribe to the Bay depictions). I think there'd be various states of inside/outside/between/within. Form and function, good lord, how would they even handle that in a species that can vary from planet-sized to a few feet tall? When the form can change almost arbitrarily? I read a story where their language is entirely logic-based, which meant that every word had a true/false value, and that seems... right somehow. Either you are loyal or you are not; either you are an Autobot or you are a Decepticon. The meaning of those words may very from person to person, but the state of being Autobot or Decepticon is still a yes/no situation. I don't think they'd have modifiers like "really" or "very" or "mostly". And oh man, the vocabulary they must have for some things - an individual's location in relation to planetary masses, for example. Things that happen to metal, like the discoloration of heated copper or the tarnish of silver or the different ways things melt. Electrical vocabulary - sparks and jolts and the like, the distinction between harmful and useful electrical discharges, and the distinction between the life-spark and electrical activity. Kinds of fuel! Energon vs. organic-based gasoline vs. who knows what else! That's not even going into bodily systems and whether a form's purpose is tied into the word for said form. Whether there's a distinction between military and civilian and medic, or whether that's tied into this person takes this shape which has these uses available. Not to mention the words for the different senses they must have - you can't tell me they don't feel EM in some way. And lord, all the ways they can communicate - in-atmosphere vocals, interpersonal comms, I don't even know. I still haven't even put much thought into their spoken language - I like the take the movies took on that, actually, the staticky crackles. There's no reason for it to be limited to sounds humans can hear, either. Think of all the kinds of noise electronics can make! Hisses and crackles and tones and clicks. No need to limit yourself to one tone at a time, either. It's almost like music.

Maaaaan I want to build them a language. It would be so beautiful.


Jun. 28th, 2009 02:23 pm
swordage: rotf Soundwave (Default)
The recent warnings debate has got me thinking. Thankfully, I've only been exposed to very sensible people (I love my reading list!) who are thoughtful and well-spoken, with a wide variety of viewpoints. As a result, I am revising how I deal with warnings.

I will not lie: I have been in the anti-warnings camp through a mixture of asshattery and privilege. My journal info declares that the content of the journal may be objectionable etc. and should be considered a potential reading hazard; for a while part of my layout did this as well. During my shift to DW I edited the age-restrictions on every single entry. I also have a rating system in place, with an explanation of how I use said system on my journal bio. However, my readers may not see any of these things. They may be linked to a fic directly, or to a style=mine page. They may not read my journal info at all. So, over an unspecified period of time, I will be going through and making warning headers as best I can.

I am privileged enough that I am blind to what I am writing. My best story was both racist and sexist; I have written dub-con without noticing; I forget that Sam/Dean is incest. These are not excuses for not warning. It does mean that my warnings may not be accurate - and on top of this, I do still strongly feel that certain parts of a story should not be stated in the header. As a result, certain warnings may be intentionally vague, such as "potentially triggering issues". I hope this will give a heads-up to readers with known triggers, prepare other readers for the story, and also keep me happy as the author.

I am open to advice! If you can think of a warning for one of my stories, please do let me know. As I said, I am basically oblivious to everything. I'm also totally up for talking about warning and why I'm changing my stance on the issue.
swordage: rotf Soundwave (no animals were harmed)
I'm way too excited about the swine flu, guys. It is highly relevant to my interests. So let's talk about it! The information here is largely copied from my blog Bird Flu Will Kill You (Maybe) which draws primarily from the CDC. All information is as accurate as I can get it.

About the spread of swine flu:
1. The handful of people in the US with lab-confirmed cases haven't died. The only guy that needed hospitalization was immune-compromised, and he got better. Yes, ladies and gents, the USA death rate for this monster swine flu is a staggering 0%!
2. The cases trickling in are cases that happened a 2-4 weeks ago, and we're just now getting genetic results back on the specific strains of flu they had. Basically: swine flu already happened, and we're just figuring it out. It's probably over. EVERYBODY PANIC
3. There are going to be more cases of this. The reason cases will start trickling in is because we're now actively looking for them. It's just that simple.
4. No there won't be a pandemic. You have to die a lot to have a pandemic. Even in Mexico, the death rate for flu-like illnesses that might be swine flu is a staggering .07%. My god, we're doomed!

About swine flu itself:
1. Symptoms include coughing, sneezing, sore throat, fever, headache, body aches, vomiting, and diarrhea. It's a flu! Surprise!
2. It does seem to transmit from human to human rather than pig to human. That means it spreads fast. In fact, it already happened. Did you miss it? It was that fast.
3. Genetically, this thing is awesome. Four different strains of swine, human, and avian influenza! It's called genetic shift and it's something flus do naturally. Because they're whores.
4. It may have some characteristics that are a little like the killer 1918 flu except for the whole part where it's not really killing people, and also those characteristics might be a fluke of Mexico's flu surveillance. They do more containment/treatment than genetic testing of flu-like illnesses, so it's hard to say.

What to do about swine flu:
1. Wash your hands.
2. Cover your face when you sneeze/cough.
3. If you're sick, consider doing to a doctor.
4. Does this list look familiar? Like maybe it's exactly what you do for every other minor illness that's ever happened? Yeah. There's a reason for that.

What to do if you're paranoid:
1. Get a respirator rated N-95 to filter out virus bits.
2. Stock up on water and non-perishable foods.
3. Make signs reading "THE END IS NEAR" and a nice hat out of foil.
4. Repeat steps 1-3.

If you have any lingering concerns or questions, please do ask. I like being useful. Right now I'm laughing at my family, cackling madly: "SEE?! MY OBSESSION WITH THE BIRD FLU IS USEFUL! I KNEW IT WOULD HAPPEN ONE DAY!" If you want to wade through a lot of technical and political jabber, check out the CDC or WHO.

P.S. No pig has ever had this strain of swine flu. Pork is safe. Go eat your bacon.

FF7 fic

Feb. 18th, 2005 12:24 am
swordage: Tight shot of Zack from FF7 (x zach)
Most of my FF7 fics are really too personal to post; they're rather a chronicle of my growth as a writer. This, however, is too good not to share. Please note that it's post-game, heedless of anything Advent Children may imply; this is not eye-candy. It is schmoop. XD This is my original fandom, and I do love it so. Hope you enjoy.

Title: Walking in the Air
Series: Final Fantasy VII
Rating: PG
Ramifications: Post-game hypothetical, with a great many coincidences left unexplained.
Summary: They've made a family while they weren't looking, as is evidenced by a stormy evening.

Some things are not fragile. )



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