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Sticky post: I've moved!

I am now over at WordPress, Like a Grown-Up. See you there!

Last LJ post

Finally got the kinks on WordPress worked out, and I am now there to stay. Posted a short piece on mental verbalization and writer's block this morning, hope you will migrate with me to weigh in on that, and many more to come. :)

Hey hey, look who's on WordPress!

So the hold-up this whole time has been that whenever I tried to export my LJ over to WordPress, it would multiply the comments by a factor of about 800 -- which, when I have ~1,300 comments to start with, isn't even feasible to go back and fix manually. It looked like my only option was to export it without comments, which was really disappointing, because oftentimes the fun stuff is not just in the post itself but in the discussion that ensued. I didn't want to lose that, but, well, shou ga nai. It was time to bite the bullet and move myself to a blogging platform that I wasn't embarrassed to mention in polite company.

Fire up my web hosting control panel. Install WordPress. Install LJ-importing tool. Activate. Zone out. WHOA FUCK, IT'S STARTING TO IMPORT COMMENTS, I DIDN'T TELL YOU TO DO THAT, BACK BACK, ABORT ABORT. This after it had loaded "batch 1 out of 5" of comments, and had started on the second one.

...and guys, I got it. Batch 1 was my damn comments. Batches 2-5 are the duplicates. I caught it before it could re-import them a bajillion times, meaning I am on WordPress, with all my entries, with all my comments!! (Granted, imported comments don't seem to be threading properly, but I'll take this as a victory anyhow.)

So here I am! Not quite done moving yet, as I'm having a weirdly difficult time finding a WP theme that meets all my needs. (Like why does gd EVERYONE want to blanket-italicize blockquotes?? I'm quoting excerpts from books, you idjits, the formatting is non-negligible.) (Or worse, what my otherwise-favorite of the lot does, which is put blockquotes in ~quirky~ comics sans-esque font that is twice the size of the surrounding text. It is eye-searing. If anyone knows how to edit a WP theme, please please to share the secret with me. I am usually pretty good with computers, but web-applications are my nemesis.)

Anyway, the dust hasn't finished settling yet, but I am finally making this move and that's where I'll be. New comments should be directed over there, because this LJ is going moribund pretty soon, but I'll let y'all know when it's been abandoned for good.

GRATE literature, and me

So anyone who's read me for a while has probably picked up on my ambivalence toward the literary canon -- that long list of books that Critics have deemed to be Grate Literature, and that frequently gets derided in progressive spheres for being overwhelmingly populated by dead white guys.

Although to be fair, I'm generally not that excited by what dead white ladies have produced either.Collapse )

Gremble's Narratology, Part II

So mode and voice and focalization are all well and good, but narratology didn't dazzle me until I read Dorrit Cohn's Transparent Minds (1978) because it is all about the issue that is the absolute nearest and dearest to my heart: how writers convey a character's consciousness to the reader. What are the techniques for conveying a character's thoughts, emotions, and opinions to the audience?

And most crucially: rather than telling the reader what they're feeling, how do you make the reader feel what they're feeling?

And I'm probably doing this in the wrong order, but whatever, skipping to the good parts: Cohn on narrating subjectivityCollapse )

Gremble's Narratology, Part I

"All I want," I lamented, "is an Intro to Narratology textbook that takes its examples from slash fanfic instead of from Joyce and Proust. Is that too much to ask?"

To which my friend replied, "I think you're going to have to write that one yourself, bb."

Alright then.

The Basics: Mode and FocalizationCollapse )

Fuckin' hell, Santa Olivia is good

Just thought I'd mention that again, in case you missed the last time I raved about it. I reread it after my trashy fantasy binge last week, and my god, it is still so fucking good.

Seriously, of all the queer fantasy I've read, this is the book that is damn near perfect. Jacqueline Carey was already famous for beautiful prose and passionate romance from her Kushiel series and she delivers both in this, along with a marvelously diverse and engaging cast of characters, an immersive, almost claustrophobically intense dystopic atmosphere, and a tight, well-reasoned plot. I have literally nothing to criticize about this book.

...Granted, the sequel is kind of a different story. Maybe I'll reread that too, and finally get around to putting up a review of it.

Shards of Time, by Lynn Flewelling


Read more...Collapse )

One last thing: pause for a moment and remember what it means that the first Nightrunner book came out in 1996. You know how much gay fantasy fiction there was in 1996? Spoiler: not much. The forerunners to Luck in the Shadows were still operating under the conventional wisdom that anything gayer than subtext wouldn't sell, or that if you did have a gay relationship, you couldn't make it the centerpiece.

When I was first putting together the booklist, I was continually frustrated by books that had been recced for their gay content only to find that it was so peripheral as to hardly even be present. Luck in the Shadows was one of the first to be like, Nope, they're here, they're queer, and they're playing your fantasy spygames. (And nope, they're not gonna die tragically.) So regardless of how well you like the series, remember that the steady uptick in queer, published SFF is due in part to the success of the Nightrunner series. Flewelling was the one who bucked precedent and showed that you could tell a good story with gay protagonists, and that people would read it because of them, not in spite of them.

So, my hat goes off to you, Lynn Flewelling -- godspeed, and I look forward to your next creative endeavor.

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