24 October 2013 @ 07:06 pm
Day #7 - Your Favorite Friendship

Tod & Copper

There are so many Disney friendships I love - I could not possibly list them all. So why this one? The movie "The Fox and the Hound" isn't usually one of the first to spring to mind when people say "Disney" - so why this one? Simple - I haven't seen this movie in years, let alone thought about these characters, but when I read the topic of the day, they were the first to spring to mind. I figured that had to mean something. It is rare in this day and age to find the deep friendships of yesteryear. I don't mean that they are not there - I just mean that they are not celebrated. Nowadays, for whatever reason, if you're that good of friends, sex must enter the question somewhere. (*sighs*) Anyway, I love the fact that these two became friends despite it breaking pretty much every rule. Meant to be bitter enemies, they overcome the difficulties and end up proving that it is not only 'true (romantic) love' that conquers all.

Truly loving friendships do it just as well.
24 October 2013 @ 08:33 am
I'm thinking of doing some entries on certain points of history that are usually only told from historically anti-Catholic points of view. I'm not going to say the Church was right in what they did, but I want to put the other side of the story out there for people. History is never written objectively because humanity simply can't do that...and any who claim to should be doubly scrutinized. There are many instances in history where the 'villain' is more evil than he actually was simply because of how the history has been told.

For my f-list folks who aren't interested, I'll be putting my entries under a cut to make it easier for you to skip over. I just feel it would be worth my while to at least attempt to tell the other side of the story in such situations as Galileo, the Inquisition, the Crusades, etc.
23 October 2013 @ 10:11 pm
Day #6 - Your Favorite Cast of Characters

The Cast of Winnie the Pooh

I have to admit, there are plenty of 'casts' that I like - Alice in Wonderland, the Aristocats, Beauty and the Beast, etc. - but there are none that I enjoy so much as the wonderful bunch from the Hundred Acre Woods. Christopher Robin with his imagination that all children should possess. Rabbit with all of his worries about this and that. Owl with his silly stories. Kanga with all her sweetness and motherhood. Roo and his full on kidness. Piglet and his adorable anxiety. Tigger and his bouncing craziness. Pooh, of course, and his wise foolishness. My favorite of all Eeyore and the sheer humor of his gloomy acceptance of life. (I even like the cameo of the stereotypical 'hick' Gopher.) A childhood (or adulthood for that matter) without the original "Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh" (not the new stuff) is a life deprived.

When you need a quick pick-me-up, skip the pills and the drinks and the chocolate - got get a hit of the 'bear with very little brain'. If you can watch that whole movie without smiling? Seek professional help immediately.
22 October 2013 @ 10:27 pm
General idea borrowed from [personal profile] ultra_fic

I come bearing gifts!

Or at least the offer of gifts. I want to get requests early so I have time around the insanity of the next two months to get them back to you sometime within the Christmas season (from Christmas Eve to the Epiphany). Please reply to this post using the textbox information if you would like something from me. (You are welcome to leave more than one if you can't decide or would like to be extra surprised.)

What am I offering? Ficlets (500+ words - might go longer - I never know) or Graphics (EITHER 1 wallpaper, 2 banners or headers, 3 sigtags (any community), or 5-10 icons)

My ratings will go up to an R.

Crossovers are available as long as they are from the fandoms listed at the links below.


(Additional fandoms which I will try are included on this list )

22 October 2013 @ 06:19 pm
Day #5 - Your Favorite Hero


I have always loved Grumpy. He seemed to me to be the only one of the Dwarfs who could actually help Snow White in any real meaningful way. As I grew older, I realized they all gave her something of themselves, but he's the one who still impresses me most. His gruff exterior hides a heart of gold - with all of its depth of feeling and all of its courage. Despite his suspicions and worries, he comes to care for the girl thrust suddenly into their midst. He leads the charge against the witch...something that should have been Prince Charming's job, in my personal opinion. Given the natures of the other dwarfs, you can see his loyalty and acceptance. If he were really the one who has to overcome an 'attitude', he would never have lasted with the others. Either they would have driven him away or he would have left in a huff. Grumpy is the animated stand-in for the old phrase - "You can't judge a book by its cover."
21 October 2013 @ 10:43 pm
Day #4 - Your Favorite Heroine


How can you not like Megara? Granted, she's probably not the first one that comes to mind when you think of a 'heroine' - especially considering she was working for Hades - but she's sarcastic, stubborn, and sassy all rolled into one. One of the big things with me - Megara is not perfect. She makes bad decisions, bad choices, but in the end decides to live with the consequences of her decisions. She doesn't run from them or try to get out of them. When it comes to the sticking point, she ultimately chooses to sacrifice her own freedom, face her own fears, and give her own life to help and protect someone else. She's one of the heroines who grows into her place...she isn't born there...she doesn't live some charmed life...she doesn't have a fairy godmother. No, Megara has to struggle and cope with life just like we do.

Besides - how can you not like a woman with lines like these:

-Pinhead with hooves? Well, you know how men are. They think "No" means "Yes" and "Get lost" means "Take me, I'm yours."
-He comes on with his big, innocent farm boy routine, but I could see through that in a Peloponnesian minute.
-I'm a damsel, I'm in distress, I can handle this. Have a nice day.
20 October 2013 @ 01:16 pm
The Catholic Church (or Christianity as a whole) is not the root of all evil! (Neither is religion for that matter.) You can dislike the belief system and what it teaches, but please refrain from attacking it just because you don't like it. Honestly - you get chastised and smacked down for any other form of prejudice, but attack someone because they believe in Christ? Oh, you are celebrated as a courageous hero!

FYI - when the white towers of government, the media, and higher education are all looking down on something, treating something as inferior, YOU are not being heroic by going along with them. I am sick and tired of being treated like I am ignorant, sick-minded, or an infant because I am Catholic, read the Bible, and believe in God.
19 October 2013 @ 11:43 pm
Okay, I actually think I'm doing NaNo this year. First off...I'm pretty sure I'm crazy. I need to decide which of the stories I want to try and write 50K on. I am seriously mental.
19 October 2013 @ 10:45 pm
If you are going to discuss history topics, please know what you are talking about! (I might have just insulted someone with an answer to a comment they made, but I tried to be honest without being too rude.) Someone listed the Dark Ages as their least favorite time in history, and given what they said, I think it is based more on a dislike of the Church than any real feel for the era.

The so-called Dark Ages have usually (popularly) been synonymous with the Middle Ages (Medieval period). The comment included a note about there being hardly any art or architecture and also referred to it as being boring where nothing much happened because 'the Church was in charge and they basically didn't allow much of anything to happen'. I don't think the person in question studied the same history I did...or they've taken in way too much of the popular "Hollywood" version of history without getting the real McCoy.

My reply to her comment: "I actually enjoy that era - the founding of the university system (including the Universities of Bologna, Oxford, & Cambridge), the people (Charlemagne, Hildegard von Bingen, Fibonacci, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Marco Polo, St. Francis of Assisi, St. Catherine of Siena), artists, musicians, and writers (Giotto, Ambrogio Lorenzetti, Duccio, Dante, Guido d' Arezzo, Boethius), types of art (Carolingian, Romanesque, Gothic), and events (the signing of the Magna Carta, the building of Notre Dame and La Sainte-Chapelle) - it's really amazing how much went on that gets overlooked."

The Middle Ages actually started the boiling pot that would one day overflow and flower into the Renaissance around 1420. One of the best descriptions I've heard for how the Renaissance saw mankind came from Sister Wendy Beckett - "we can think of the Renaissance as seeing humanity as godlike. No! They saw humanity as dignified, as able to stand up and take responsibility...They stand on the earth and they cast their own shadows. That's what the Renaissance was about - humanity as upright, suffering, but responsible." Without the Middle Ages, it is highly probable we would not have had the Renaissance and all that came art or science or literature - or pretty much anything else.
19 October 2013 @ 08:16 pm
Day 3: Your Favorite Official Prince


Phillip is why Sleeping Beauty is my favorite 'classic' Disney film. Don't get me wrong - the guys in Snow White and Cinderella are pretty enough, but lets be real. All they do is show up and sing, dance, or kiss. All the real work is done by other guys! In Snow White, it's the Seven Dwarfs who do the dirty work and in Cinderella, the prince can't even be bothered to go searching for his own girl! Phillip shows up and does the sing/dance/kiss routine, sure, but even better? He's the one who actually fights the dragon! He goes to a dungeon for the girl he loves! He fights through terrible thorns and faces one of the all time best (worst) villains of Disney. Sure, he gets help from the three fairies, but what idiot wouldn't take help when offered? Phillip faces trials and tribulations to win the hand of the fair maiden.

Given a choice between the three main 'classics'? This is the prince I want on my side.
18 October 2013 @ 06:18 pm
Day 2: Your Favorite Official Princess


I'm pretty sure Mulan is listed as an official princess, but I didn't want to duplicate quite this early. Belle is one of my favorite overall characters as well. I love the fact that she is a reader, seeking to expand beyond her physical boundaries by exercising her imagination and constantly pushing the limitations of knowledge to explore beyond. Belle is a princess who makes it cool to be smart...she doesn't just have to be pretty or charming or...or...or. She has firm opinions, but she's willing to learn. I like how she manages to balance the two sides of femininity - the intellect and the heart. In addition - while she has no intention of becoming the 'little wife,' it is obvious she doesn't have anything against the institution itself. She actually is willing to have a significant other, but she wants one who will admire her for herself, not her face. The problem with being the beauty? Like a 'stacked' girl, the prettier she is, the more intellect points are subtracted. What an insult to a beautiful, intelligent woman! Belle is the animated stand in for the women who have had their talents and brains overlooked just because they had a pretty face.
17 October 2013 @ 09:21 pm
Dear Flist,

Halloween is coming!!!

Comment "trick-or-treat" to this post and I'll reply with a treat! Treats can be anything that strikes my fancy (pics of fave actors or pairings, one sentence fics, graphics, a few words why I'm glad to have you on my flist, etc. etc.). The more "houses" to visit the more fun it'll be, so go ahead, open your journal and help spread the fun!

**If you leave me a list of fandoms you're into (or two or three fandoms, at least), that would be very helpful! Thanks!
17 October 2013 @ 08:23 pm
Day #1 - Your Favorite Character


There are the obvious reasons, of course. She's a kick-ass heroine who almost single-handed saves the Empire of China after overcoming the male-dominated culture. Nice, no two ways about it.

However I find the story goes a bit deeper than that. She does all of it...without disparaging or seeking to radically change the world around her. Mulan does all of this while remaining respectful of her people's history, culture, and traditions...she simply wishes to be allowed to express her own sense of being within its framework. She isn't the radical marching in the streets with banners or signs demanding this or that. She simply steps up and does what has to be done regardless of the stigma she will gain from it. The world changes its views...not because she forced the change down their throats by wild frenzied threats, but because she did everything from her own personal sense of honor - a child's love and duty to care for her father...even to the point of his disapproval. Like the slow drip of water that erodes a great canyon, she creates change simply by being herself within the tradition...see how ready she is to accept punishment at the hands of the emperor...see how much she desires her family's approval...and also, at the end, she remains loyal to her vision of herself. While Grandma is ready to invite Shang to stay forever, Mulan sensibly sticks with dinner.

Mulan - if explained properly - is the type of feminist heroine I can easily endorse. Strong and gentle...respectful and firm...none of the firebrand rhetoric with empty promises...just a girl who becomes a woman by doing what is right.
17 October 2013 @ 12:09 pm
Still planning on doing random posts...I've got a couple of ideas bubbling in my head...but I saw this and couldn't resist the idea of trying. We'll see how far I get. (I suck at these!)

06 October 2013 @ 06:29 pm
This is a bit of a sad vent because I need to get it out.

Unhappy )
21 September 2013 @ 02:12 pm
Mary Sue…that dreaded criticism given out when a character (almost always female) is either too perfect or too intelligent or too angsty or too…too…too…too… Feel free to fill in the blank.

I hate this criticism.

Do you know what this criticism is? It is a catch-all, scare the author, ‘I don’t like where you are taking the character’ type commentary that does absolutely nothing when it comes to constructive help in making the author a better writer. It requires no real thought from the critic.

Guess what?

Characters are allowed to be good at what they do! (Yes, even the females.)

This particular criticism was tossed at me during one chapter of my Compass Rose story on how I was handling Darcy because I actually made her good at a couple of things. Oh, my goodness! The horror! A humble woman who was both a great assistant and who could actually cook! Mary Sue her!

Bite me.

It was one chapter. No character is going to be perfectly unperfect across every chapter and page of a story. People are actually good at things as often as they are bad. When things come together at just the right point, you are going to see them at their best. Please look at real life people – sometimes they are the kind of cool you almost have to hate because they are so perfect. Wait five minutes – it’ll change. The same goes for characters in a story – wait a chapter or two and it should change. Deciding that a character is a bit too ‘Mary Sue’ because of the happening in one chapter? Sorry, but that’s stupid.

Professional author Ann C. Crispin is quoted as saying: "The term 'Mary Sue' constitutes a put-down, implying that the character so summarily dismissed is not a true character, no matter how well drawn, what sex, species, or degree of individuality." There are people not writing decent female characters because they are worried about this criticism. They’re not quite so worried about the guys…after all, what could be more ‘Mary Sue’ than Captain America, Superman, Batman, James T. Kirk, etc., etc., etc. The ‘too fill-in-the-blank’ male characters often become heroes while the women are booed off the stage.

Not that I want to make this all about a gender issue, but the fact of the matter remains that many more women are considered ‘Sues’ than men. Many of our favorite female characters might have been written off as Mary Sues if the term existed when they were created – Black Widow, Jean Grey, Wonder Woman, and pretty much every Disney princess ever. Fortunately the Mary Sue thing got started after most of those women were accepted and untouchable in terms of existence.

People claim – “well, if they just had some flaws, then they wouldn’t be Sues” – except then you start getting the Sue variations. Give your female the tendency to cry too much? She’s a Weepy Sue. Fight too much? She’s a Jerky or Warrior Sue. And so on and on and on…

Another criticism is that Mary Sues are wish fulfillment characters. What hero or heroine isn’t? I’m sorry, but hello? All characters are wish fulfillments of one kind or another. If JK Rowling had written Harry Potter, but made it Harriet, how many people would have written ‘her’ off as a Sue? Tragic and/or abusive background to win sympathy? Check. Striking or unusual features (see eyes and scar)? Check. An unknown power or potentially great power? Check. Everything that happens seems to center on character, character’s past, character’s destiny? Check. People love/hate/admire/fear character without actual reason or connection to character? Check.

Critic – ‘Well of course you’d expect that about the main character…its why they’re the main character!” So…if your female is the main character, why does she get called a Canon Sue instead of being allowed the same leeway? Why do other characters get called Sues even when they are the main character, but not a fan favorite?

Generally speaking, as far as I can see, ‘Mary Sue’ is usually directed at original characters put into fandom – particularly those fandoms that are all or predominantly male. These fandoms do not have enough women to write the story the author wants to write, so the author adds original characters in order to write their story. This sets off all of the people who don’t like original characters or who don’t want their fandoms changed or who don’t want to see a woman breaking up a slash pairing…especially when said pairing is non-canon.

(I always find it interesting how people don’t fuss or blink when a straight character is fanfic’d as gay/lesbian, but they bring out the torches and pitchforks if the reverse happens. Again, bite me. If you are going to complain about one, you have to be fair and complain about the other. You can’t write Xander as gay but get fussy when someone writes Tara as straight.)

Thus, in my mind, ‘Mary Sue’ is a very BAD form of criticism. If you are ever tempted to tell someone they’ve written a Sue, stop. Just stop. Go back through the story and find WHY you don’t like the character. If it is legit, explain it in real, constructive terms…and NEVER use ‘Mary Sue’. Seriously – ‘Mary Sue’ is a generic insult meant to frighten people away from exploring different avenues of expression, including an exploration of feminine wish fulfillment.

As I said at the beginning – I hate this criticism.
20 September 2013 @ 11:29 pm
Yipes! Did I ever fall of the wagon! Trying to be better...

Writing Checkpoint:

As yet unnamed Avengers High School AU - 2,255/5,000
As yet unnamed AvengersFest - 746/1,000
Plaything (HP Dark Arts) - 1,548/500 - FINISHED
Duet (Glee) - 1,807/10,000
Binary (temp) (M7) - 1,317/10,000
As yet unnamed Glee/M7 crossover - 1,238/10,000
In the Family Way (HP Prompt) - 570/500 - still unfinished
HP Holiday Fest - 110/1,500 - no change
As yet unnamed Avengers Slave AU - 298/12,000 - no change
As yet unnamed Avengers KidFic - 0/7,000 - new
As yet unnamed HP Angst AU - 564/10,000 - no change

Hopefully I will be better this weekend.
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19 September 2013 @ 08:20 pm
This one is again prompted by fanfic searching. I'm not going to discuss slash or femslash pairing because we all know I prefer het. I'm going to list some het pairings (many apparently popular) that I just cannot get into.

Avengers (MCU) -
Loki/Anybody - Sorry, but Loki is a villain. I cannot see him with any of the ladies of the Avenger MCU. His actions put all of them in danger and directly affected a handful of them. To pair them with him? Even if he were to really, really repent and turn his life around, I just can't see it.
Clint/Natasha - They are too much alike - something or someone is needed to balance them out. It's the dark shadows inside both of them - without someone or something light to help offset that, I can only see their story going dark and I like happy/hopeful endings.
Coulson/Hill - Again, too much alike. Both of them are scarily efficient and stoic. They need a lighter note or a crazier note to work. It's one of the reasons I can get behind Phil/Darcy or Phil/Pepper (if it didn't break up OTP's) - Darcy provides crazy while Pepper is light. For Hill, I either can see her with Steve or single.

Buffy -
Buffy/Angel - the Romeo & Juliet of the Buffy-verse! Can't stand it. He's over two hundred years old and acting like an untried teenager! Also - while they should embody the 'opposites attract', the truth is that they are too much in the same world, and its a dark one.

Firefly/Serenity -
Jayne/River - no, just no. I can see them finding a happy medium, but I don't think the two of them would ever make a decent pairing. Jayne is too much the merc, even with his moments of heroics, and River has been badly damaged by people who concentrate too much on the end result and not enough on the people.
Simon/River - ICK!!! Please see my entry on incest.
Mal/Zoe - Nope...I think this is one of those partnerships that would not grow with a romantic/sexual relationship, but that would actually die.
Mal/Inara - I know this was a canon thing, but I'm sorry, I didn't like the relationship between the two of them. Neither really accepted the full person - Mal didn't really accept Inara's profession while Inara didn't accept his shadows.

Glee -
Finn/Rachel - they brought out the worst in each other, but most of all, Finn made Rachel a weakling instead of the strong 'go for the stars' person she could be. It probably doesn't help that I didn't care for Finn and thought he got away with stuff nobody ever let any other character get away with.
Puck/Quinn - too much bitterness here...too much history - to try and make it a pairing just seems like trying to fit puzzle pieces that almost work, but not quite.

Harry Potter -
Ron/Hermione - one of JKR's end games, but I couldn't see it. I'm a believer in the 'opposites attract' thing, but there has to be something other than death, danger, and destruction to draw people together. The two of them only seemed to have Harry and fighting Voldemort as common ground and I couldn't see it.
Harry/Ginny - I could see this one better in the movies, but in the books it seemed really forced. I think it had been developed better, I might have liked it.

Leverage -
Hardison/Parker - Again, canon - again, I don't ship it. Both of them, to me, seem the flightier members of the team. They're the least serious really, and I think Parker, at least, needs someone to ground her, someone who can give her a foundation.

Stargate Atlantis -
Rodney/Jennifer - This one is one of my dislikes that I can defend the least. While I adore Rodney, I just don't agree with Jennifer's choice.

Feel free to ask any other opinions!
10 September 2013 @ 11:16 pm
This should be day 5, but yesterday sucked...oh well...I did make up a little bit today.

Writing Checkpoint:

As yet unnamed Avengers High School AU - 1,639/5,000
As yet unnamed AvengersFest - 567/1,000
Plaything (HP Dark Arts) - 864/500 - still unfinished and going darker than I thought
Duet (Glee) - 1,807/10,000
Binary (temp) (M7) - 1,317/10,000
As yet unnamed Glee/M7 crossover - 1,238/10,000
In the Family Way (HP Prompt) - 570/500 - still unfinished
HP Holiday Fest - not yet assigned - 110/1,500 - no change
As yet unnamed Avengers Slave AU - 298/12,000 - no change
As yet unnamed HP Angst AU - 564/10,000 - no change

Hopefully I can get some more stuff put through tomorrow. Wish me luck!
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08 September 2013 @ 05:20 pm
I've still got a few hours, so this may be updated, but for the moment, here is where I stand.

Writing Checkpoint:

As yet unnamed Avengers High School AU - 1,161/5,000
As yet unnamed AvengersFest - 439/1,000
Plaything (HP Dark Arts) - 402/500
Duet (Glee) - 1,285/10,000
Binary (temp) (M7) - 867/10,000
As yet unnamed Glee/M7 crossover - 714/10,000
In the Family Way (HP Prompt) - 265/500
HP Holiday Fest - not yet assigned - 110/1,500
As yet unnamed Avengers Slave AU - 298/12,000
As yet unnamed HP Angst AU - 564/10,000
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