"Patty Jenkins is Co-Writing ‘Wonder Woman 2’ With Geoff Johns".
"5 'Wonder Woman' Amazons On The Power Of Their All-Woman Army".
"Native Actor Eugene Brave Rock Talks About His Role in Wonder Woman: As Wonder Woman smashes records, Native Actor Eugene Brave Rock talks about a whirlwind week and being gifted a headdress".
"The Revolution Won’t Be Saved By Wonder Woman — And That’s Okay". [The Establishment] "Wonder Woman is a stand-in for so many women in some position of vulnerable visibility who feel unfairly scrutinized for their ideological imperfections; she, and her at times tortured relationship with the women’s movement that adopted her as a mascot, provide a helpful case study for understanding the consequences of the demands we place on each other."
"I'm A Teenager And I Don't Like Young Adult Novels. Here's Why".
"“Boys By Girls” Is Using the Female Gaze to Redefine Modern Masculinity".
While looking up some planting info for plants we have, I learned about the existence of a couple of plant types that we're not likely to ever have, but which look really neat: arisaema (cobra lily) and tacca (bat plant).
"10+ Of The Oldest Color Photos Showing What The World Looked Like 100 Years Ago".
"Disney Illustrator Imagines A Life With A Pet Octopus, And It’s Just Too Adorable (10+ Pics)".
"Writing Advice to My Students That Would Also Have Been Good Sex Advice for My High School Boyfriends". [McSweeney's]
"These “Galaxy” Flowers Hold Entire Universes On Their Petals".
"You", via a locked post where the link was described as "How ordinary (often well-meaning) people make life much harder than it needs to be for people with disabilities."
"Adhesive Foot Pads Let You Ditch the Flip Flops with Flexible Feet Protection". [Article links to active Kickstarter.]
"Animated GIFs Reveal Differences Between Subway Maps and Their Actual Geography".
"Oh, Lovely: The Tick That Gives People Meat Allergies Is Spreading".
"World's first water park for people with disabilities is literally the coolest thing ever created". (Now, if only it weren't called "Inspiration Island".)
"Brutally Honest Freelance Writer Bios". [McSweeney's]
"The Lunar Sea: The moon influences life in a surprising and subtle way: with its light".
I’m finally getting back to working on a new gateway/router server and I’m basically setting up this old-school sort of DMZ, with the rest of our servers hanging off one card, and our internal LAN/DHCP/NAT side hanging off the other. (Using ISC, which Debian seems to like.) And all of that seems to be right from the new server’s perspective, which is yay!
Except there’s no packet forwarding from the DHCP side even though it’s enabled and I’m sure I enabled it and yes the kernel thinks its enabled but it isn’t happening.
Any ideas where to start?
Noting this as I actually bought a couple of print books from Third Place the other day–things that fall into the general category of Authors Who Are Absolutely Vital For Me to Have In Print. The people for whom a lack of access to their books would make me sad, whether due to power outage or loss of reading devices or what have you.
The first of these purchases was In the Labyrinth of Drakes, Book Four in Marie Brennan’s excellent Memoirs of Lady Trent series. I’ve actually already read this and I did indeed love it immensely, but I definitely wanted the Lady Trents in print. And this one finally was available in trade now that the hardcover of Book Five is out.
Much more importantly, I acquired a hardback copy of the new Tolkien release, Beren and Luthien!
Y’all know my love of Tolkien, and you’ll probably also remember that I’m particularly fond of the tale of Beren and Luthien, which is hands down my favorite thing in the whole of The Silmarillion.
Relatedly, when Christopher Tolkien released the excellent Children of Hurin version of the other big tale from The Silmarillion–the tale of Turin Turambar–I nabbed that in hardback. I’ve said before how I had to have that in hardback just for the gorgeous illustrations, and out of general appreciation of the beauty of the work that went into putting that book together as an object.
So given all of these things together, you better believe I had to jump on the Beren and Luthien release.
Fair warning though to fellow Tolkien fans who may be covetously eying this release too: it is not cheap. (I got the hardback for $30.00, and while I could have gotten it for substantially cheaper at Barnes and Noble, I made a point of buying it from Third Place instead because local-to-my-house indie bookstores are love.) If you want that hardback and you’re more budget-pinched than I am, be aware you’ll get it for much cheaper on Amazon or with B&N, both of whom are showing prices for it around $18.
Likewise, the ebook is stupidly expensive right now. It’s clocking in at $16.99, and that price is the main reason I haven’t already nabbed this release as well in digital form. Do not mistake me: I will also be buying this book in digital form, because a) Tolkien pretty much would top the list of authors I require in both formats, and b) under no circumstances am I taking the hardback out of the house. But that price annoys me, as it’s yet another indicator of the return of agency pricing, and I have an ongoing gripe with the publishing industry seeming bound and determined to piss off digital readers by making ebooks as expensive as possible.
I’m genuinely torn, though, as to whether Tolkien is worth it to me to shell out for the ebook at that price anyway; if any author merits doing that out of all my favorites, it’s Tolkien.
Either way, the ebook edition will eventually be joining my collection too. And that’ll likely be the way I read it, just because I do most of my reading on commutes.
For now, that’s two additional book purchases to add to the tally this year, which has been quite small. (I’m actually trying to make an effort to put a dent in the backlog of books I actually own, doncha know.) 17 for the year.
Mirrored from angelahighland.com.
My hc_bingo card ( is under this cut )
At first glance I didn't see a whole lot of prompts there that work well with my usual-these-years fandom/ship, but on looking again, there are a few that I could theoretically do interesting things with, or that at least can be made to match WsIP that I expect to be on the shorter side if/when I can finish them. And my monofannishness aside, I do always hope that these challenges will twig something in my brain and let me write something new.
(Is this my first time getting an hc_bingo card that doesn't have one of the soulbond prompts? I haven't gone and checked to see if it's literally the first time, but the card generator has traditionally been very keen on giving me "unintended soulbond" and/or "unintended side effects of planned soulbond" [or whatever the exact phrasings are]. I always kinda meant to write the former for Warehouse 13; it could even happen someday. It's pretty perfect.)
And my seasonofkink card and Newsflesh-specific (inherently NSFW) notes ( are under THIS cut )
--To further illustrate how my reading is (not) going lately, seananmcguire's new novella came out a week ago and I haven't read it yet. ;_; I've at least been keeping up with some graphic novels from the library, but that's about it.
--The adorable annual we're planting that I couldn't remember for the life of me is Hawaii Blue ageratum, AKA "floss flower". *charmed* Look how cute it is!
--A happy twofold discovery: while rummaging for something else, I found a small stash of Toronto transit tokens that we'd clearly forgotten about, and I was briefly sad because I'd had the impression that the Presto system rollout in Toronto was far enough along that tokens might not be usable anymore. (Horrifying thought, since the Presto rollout sounds like a clusterfuck in all kinds of ways--which strikes me as extra embarrassing when, as far as I can tell, Presto works fairly well in Ottawa, and unless I'm wrong about that, clearly it can be fine.) But I checked the TTC site, and the header on the "fares and passes" section says "Last year’s tickets and tokens are still valid. Customers paying with tickets and tokens do not need to deposit ten cents." [Emphasis theirs.] So we'll see about using our stash up.
--Related: one of the infinite things I love about having Claudia and Jinksy is that it's much less heartbreaking to come home from Toronto now that we have sweet, soft kitties waiting for us, but the flip side is that I preemptively miss them. I'd cling to them, but they don't like that. ^^;
(That said, Jinksy's currently purring on my lap. *^^*)
I haven't been around much these few weeks past, but Pride Month does take one's attention when one works for an LGBTQ advocacy organization, especially in these latter days. If anything has been posted or has happened that you'd like to bring to my attention, please feel free to let me know in comments. :)
As I’ve been lamenting a bit on social media lately, this year has, creatively speaking, blown so many donkeys that I’m pretty sure there isn’t a single unsatisfied donkey between here and Spokane.
But Dara having been working so hard on her Overwatch fic as of late (a fic which, by the way, you should read, because it’s totally awesome and you can find it here) has been a prod to my own ability to write, I think. So I’ve been lately instituting my strategy of “ridiculously stupidly low daily word counts”, just for the sake of being able to say I’ve written something.
I’ve also returned to dealing with my still-due novellas for the Warder universe, in no small part because I’ve realized that I really need to write Caitlin Hallett and Gabien Desroches’ meeting before I can really have them appear properly in Warder Soul.
So I’m back in dealing with their story. And hey, here’s an excerpt! Caitlin’s coming out of a very spiky conversation with her father Thomas, a conversation which has not gone well. Caitlin’s looking to console herself by busking on George Street.
Except she’s got a surprise waiting for her. Muahaha.
Excerpt behind the fold!
Mirrored from angelahighland.com.
Remember that novella I’ve been writing, On Overcoming the Fear of Spiders? It’s finished. 32 chapters, a bit under 35,000 words (there is a canon digression linked at the appropriate time, but not contained within the primary volume, that boosts the word count), and I’m rather pleased to hear from a couple of readers who do not know anything about the Overwatch world that it makes sense even to them. They know there are emotional beats they’re missing, but it still works as a story.
I wasn’t specifically trying to do that, but I’m really quite pleased that it happened.
If you don’t know the lore at all, but are interested, here’s the original animated short introducing the world of the game, and here is the animated short “Alive” that featured Widowmaker. You’ll see the latter story in short form in Chapter 10, but in the cinematic, the chemistry between Amélie and Lena is absolutely smokin’, which spawned a lot of ships.
(If you really find yourself getting into the lore, here’s the official site, including the comic that confirmed Tracer – the literal face of the game, she’s on the cover of the box – is a lesbian.)
Also, you should know that in canon, in-universe, we ‘know’ that Amélie Lacroix was kidnapped by Talon and recovered apparently well but in actuality neurally reconditioned to assassinate her husband, the head of anti-Talon operations at Overwatch. After that, she went on to become a supposedly-emotionless assassin who feels only satisfaction at the success of her kills.
We are also given a lot of clues in both lore and game that this is at least in some parts a pile of lies, and that we are supposed to figure that out.
Anyway, this has been an experience like few others for me – it is literally more fiction than I’ve written, combined, before, in my life, and I actually tried writing fiction for real in college. I even got published once, in a little Ontario small-press magazine for a token $20 payment. But it was always like pulling teeth, whereas this was more like just trying to stay afloat on top of the tsunami as it carried me forward. I’ve had that feeling for individual songs before, but never for fiction.
I really liked it. I hope it happens again.
scruloose and I spent most of the evening outside putting in more plants. Whew. We are almost done. Current status, off the top of my head (and, okay, off the front of the handful of tags I have on my desk, although I'm basically doing the annuals from memory and phone pics, since we've been putting their tags in the soil with them).
So here's the current state of things:
Shrubs: the Sensation lilac (the one that's been around for several years now) is doing much better this year, I think; it's almost like pruning it and paying attention to the soil make a difference! Its blooms are fading and browning now, though. And the Bloomerang had quite a few blossom clusters when we planted it, but they've all died off. (Which may mean it's time to prune [deadhead?] it now, to make way for any blooms it may offer up later this summer. That's the point of Bloomerangs, after all, but it's only the poor thing's first year, and we imagine being transplanted is rough on them.)
Edibles: all but three tomato plants are now in their final containers and have their halos/ladders/cages/whatever, and those three have been repotted in larger but still temporary pots; I don't remember the exact breakdown anymore, other than "we have one Sungold, we'll have one Sweet 100 (see below), and we have...some...Lemon Boy and Chocolate plants". I opted not to get either cucamelons or lemon cucumbers. (I don't know why I feel weird not capitalizing the names of tomato varieties but am okay with "lemon cucumber".) So it's a lot of tomatoes and the Raspberry Shortcake bred-for-containers raspberry shrub.
Perennials: we don't have many, since there's just the one bed in the ground and it's not very big. It has two Etiole Violet clematis, two astilbe (one each of Fanal [dark red] and Purple Candles), two bleeding hearts (one each of Valentine [red] and White Pearl), purple Arendsii monkshood (which turns out to be wolfsbane, so we have to keep the cats away from it when they're outside, as well as from the tomatoes), and a fiery orange butterfly weed.
That bed also has two Rose Splash phyllostachya (I think this is one?), which is an annual.
Annuals: the planted annuals are almost all in four matching rectangular containers, and we still have some left to put in. The exception is that so far all but one of the few planted-so-far marigolds are in Smart Pots with tomatoes, although it's very possible there isn't actually enough room in those pots for both the fruit and the flowers. We're doing science? Anyway, the marigold varieties are Bonanza Flame (orange with red) and Taishan Orange.
Otherwise, the annuals are Persian shield, impatiens (white), coleus (three kinds--one rust-colored, one deep red with pink streaks, and one burgundy with redder streaks), calendula (not planted yet, and also not blooming yet, so I don't remember anything about it), snapdragons (a tray of a mix and a tray of a deep violet variety), salvia (a single blue and a tray of deep burgundyish purple--apparently there are a bazillion kinds of salvia, but without the tags that's all I recall), a dark silvery sort of heuchera (which is a perennial, I know, but it's in with the annuals now...), purple lobellia... And there's at least one I can't remember the name of at all, which is...a lighter but not pale purple, and rather adorable. I may be missing others too. [ETA: the one I knew I couldn't remember is Hawaii Blue ageratum ("floss flower").]
Baskets (mainly also annuals): I don't know exactly what's going on in basket 1, because for some reason plant shops don't necessarily label them. Basket 1 (bought pre-planted) has pink-and-white fuchsia and something purple (I was told, but I forget--maybe some of you will recognize it. I think it's a common one) and something pink. Basket 2, also bought pre-planted, is the purple calibrachoa-not-chupacabra, hanging in place of the wind chime we bought and had up for a day or so before we decided it was too loud and the sound carried too far for our condo corp. (I don't know the exact variety, but it's something like this.) And basket 3, which we planted, has small purple Shadow Dancers fuchsia, lemon balm, and lemon thyme.
Still to do: buy more soil (not sure if we'll get potting soil or do another mix of black earth, rotted sheep manure, and peat moss [IIRC]); trade a Chocolate cherry tomato plant for one of ginnikin and Kas' Sweet 100 plants and plant the latter; if wildpear doesn't take both the unplanted Chocolate and unplanted Lemon Boy, plant whichever remains (although, happily, it sounds like she'll give them both a home); plant the remaining annuals in containers.
And in the fall I plan to buy heaps of bulbs and plant them all over the place (within the realm of possibility, which isn't actually that large), since wildpear says bulbs and perennials will cheerfully grow around each other, since they sprout and bloom at fairly different times. Mostly crocuses and daffodils, I imagine; basic bright things that'll lift my heart in spring. Heaven knowns Nova Scotian springs need it.
So the first round, we'd lost badly, because I didn't get Pharah, and whoever did wasn't good with environment kills (at the Lighthouse, even, which makes me sad) and we get scrubbed. We win in the Ruins, though, because I can D.va the shit out of the Ruins.
So at the beginning of the third round, our Pharah changes to somebody else (becoming more effective, I might add) and I grab Pharah. And we're crushing them. It's the well, they can't even really get onto the point.
And I'm flying 'round the back of the well's lighthouse, to bombard the entry to the point from over the sea, which is what I should be doing if I can. And I see Hanzo and Junks on a second-floor balcony facing the ocean.
So of course, I boop 'em, because environmental kills are my dearest love as Pharah. The archer flies directly into the ocean, and so does Junks - at first. Then he spins round, throws his mine directly in front of himself, detonates it...
...and gets blown ALL THE WAY BACK TO THE LOWER LEVEL OF THE LIGHTHOUSE, making it safely to land.
I was all like "Oh, well done. I almost hate to kill you."
Of course, we promptly three-on-oned him and he died, because he had no team behind him. But I just gotta say: enemy Junkrat from last night? That was some damned find junking. Quick thinking and well done, whoever you were.
hc_bingo Round 8 is open for sign-ups.
pbam (Porn Battle Amnesty) is holding a More Golden Oldies round, which draws from prompts given in previous rounds.
"‘Wonder Woman’ is More Like a Disney Princess Story Than a Superhero Movie – And That’s a Good Thing".
"Wonder Woman's Most Fantastic Scene Nearly Didn't Get Made at All".
"Wonder Woman - History Painting". "I had the pleasure and honor of working with Patty Jenkins and her team to create the animated painting at the beginning of Wonder Woman. It was a huge undertaking, but I had a small team of super-talented artists to help finish it on time, and Patty & Co. were very supportive along the way." This includes a couple of paintings that didn't make it into the final film.
[ETA: The above link was returning a 404 error for a while, but seems to be working again now. Odd.]
"Welcome to Tatiana Maslany’s Acting Master Class: With every character she plays, the Orphan Black star changes the pulse on set".
"DC's Bringing Back Its Bombshells To Explore the Fallout of World War II". [io9]
"Let's Admire Sailor Moon Anime Backgrounds" (the original anime series, that is).
"2017 Live-Action Adaptations from Shoujo and Josei Manga – UPDATED".
"Beloved Hayao Miyazaki Film Set To Get A Theme Park Of Its Own".
"Studio Ghibli’s Double Feature of Grave of the Fireflies and My Neighbor Totoro Was a Terrible Idea". [Tor.com]
Via st_aurafina, anandrine has a post for people to ID Dreamwidth communities that're active (or that they wish were more active).
"American Hippopotamus: A bracing and eccentric epic of espionage and hippos". (This history-that-almost-was inspired Sarah Gailey's novella River of Teeth, that wondrous AU where baby hippos are called HOPS. The article is long and I haven't finished reading it yet.)
"Bruce Springsteen Is Ditching Football Stadiums And Basketball Arenas For The Bright Lights Of Broadway".
"This Illustrator Explains To Bros Why They Need Feminism".
"This is What Happens When You Teach an AI to Name Guinea Pigs".
"Documenting the World’s Animals, One Picture at a Time". [National Geographic]
Kinda awesome how, if I put out a reminder call for Boosting the Signal posts, I can get some! Today I have a post to share with you from a fellow NIWA member who hasn’t been here before: James D. Macon. James released Purveyors and Acqurirers, Book 1 of his Phosphire Journeys fantasy YA series, in November of last year. His piece today gives a glimpse of the mysterious organization known as The Trade. What are their goals? And do their stated goals align with how they truly function? That’s the ticket, as the Interested Party investigating them discovers in this scene.
Interested Party, (IP), paced in the well-appointed room waiting for his guest to arrive. A dampened fire burned in the hearth and provided an unneeded warmth. The open window allowed a view of the rising moon. The door to the chamber opened and he saw a gentleman stylishly dressed in sky blue from head to toe, and wearing a wide brimmed hat sporting a blue feather from a bird IP did not recognize, walk in. The fellow smiled broadly and closed the door behind him.
“Hello, my name is Qwen. I am a Practitioner of the Arts and member of the Trade. I assume that you are Interested Party?” Qwen gestured with the fingers of his left hand and spoke softly, Aspscon Diatail Soni Visu.
IP stepped back. “Yes, I am. Welcome Master Qwen. I appreciate your agreeing to this interview. I am curious, did you conjure just now?”
“Only a small warding to keep our visit private.” Qwen answered pleasantly. His eyes darted about the chamber before settling on IP. Qwen said to no one in particular, “Please keep a look out for me.”
IP momentarily wondered who Qwen was talking to. IP gestured toward two chairs and eased into the one nearest him. “I hope you don’t mind me asking, but tell me what you know about the Trade?”
“Well, if I go into too much detail, then I would have to kill you. Don’t worry, it would only be business.” Qwen’s smile broadened as he sat.
Startled, IP stammered, “Ah, ah, I’m sorry. I was under the impression that this would be a candid discussion.”
Qwen assumed a listening posture with his head tilted to toward his shoulder. “Oh, that’s right, he’s supposedly safe from retribution. What was the Trade Master thinking arranging this interview?”
“Perhaps we should start with you telling me more about yourself.” IP decided a subject change was in order. He could push for more information on the Trade once his subject was no longer distracted.
Qwen leaned back and crossed his legs. “Earlier I stated that I was a Practitioner. What I didn’t say is that I am also a Tzefire, a person with an affinity to the element of air.” He glanced upward. “Yes, I was about to tell him about you.” He turned back to IP. “I have been privileged to be able to associate with beings from the Terrene of Air.”
IP was starting think Qwen was a bit eccentric, or worse. “No offence, but you seem to be conversing with the space above your shoulder. It is rather distracting.”
“Lean forward please.” Qwen conjured, Praesen Adspectis. He touched IP on the forehead.
IP looked with wonder at the four creatures he saw undulating in the air above Qwen. Serpentine in shape, their supple bodies were without appendages. Heads had large oval eyes and a maw that appeared and disappeared from view. IP thought it was nice to know that Qwen wasn’t touched in the head after all. “What marvelous entities.”
“They are known in our sphere as Zephyrs, although that is not what they call themselves.” Qwen informed IP.
This is fantastic, IP thought. What a story this may turn out to be. “What is most important to you, Master Qwen?”
Qwen sat thinking for a long moment before saying, “There are a lot of wrongs being done. Some by people with good intentions. If one could right just one of them, then change for the better can happen.”
“I see.” Now was the moment to get back to the purpose of this visit, IP thought to himself. “A source told me that the Trade has begun to have dealings with children. Is this true, Master Qwen?”
“It is not what you think. There is no nefarious plot for you to dig up. The children are orphans who have been offered apprenticeships. We are only doing our part to help the underserved of Arlanda.”
“Placed in that light, you make it seem as if there is nothing needing investigation.” IP intended to look into Qwen’s claim.
Qwen leaned forward. “How would you like to interview one or more of the children? I could broach the topic with the Trade Master if you wish. Better still I suggest you discuss your concern with Matriarch Izlan at the Temple of the Ladies of Life where the children live. You could even make a donation toward the children’s education. Any amount would be appreciated.”
“I’ll get back to you on that.” IP hadn’t planned on parting with his coin and didn’t want to admit to Qwen that he wasn’t comfortable around children.
A fifth Zephyr entered the room through the open window. It flew around Qwen’s head. Qwen stood. “My apologies Master Party, but my associate has brought an important matter to my attention. We will have to reschedule. By the way, nothing we discussed leaves this chamber.” Qwen didn’t conjure. He assumed the form of a Zephyr and sped out the window accompanied by his companions.
Follow the Author On: Official Site
Mirrored from angelahighland.com.
The Gas Works Park show tomorrow is cancelled – turns out the organiser didn’t realise that even ‘private’ parties require permits for entertainment, and once made aware of that, discovered… well… yeah.
Sorry folks. Just found out myself.
"Russia's Museum Cats". [The New Yorker, 2012]
"If You Don't Laugh At Any Of These Pictures Then You Have A Cold Heart". [Buzzfeed, as given away by the title; it's captioned animal photos from Twitter]
"inside the underground subculture of female korean tattoo artists". [December 2016]
"Tree-dwelling gray foxes decorate with skeletons"
"Popsicles Made From 100 Different Polluted Water Sources Grab World’s Attention".
Via dine, "50 People Spend 2 Months To Crochet Giant Urchins Above Singapore’s Marina That Each Weight 220 Lbs (100Kg)".
"New Twitter Policy Abandons a Longstanding Privacy Pledge". [EFF]
"Best Cats Of Reykjavík".
"Cats Are Tattooing Other Cats in Surreal Japanese Ink Wash Paintings".
"36 Jokes About Marriage That Will Make You Both Laugh". [Buzzfeed] Actually, no, a lot of them are actively annoying, so brace for that if you go in, but some of them are truly funny.
siderea has a pair of posts that go together: "What Assisted Living Is" (details specific to Massachusetts, but some of the info is more broadly applicable, at least in North America) and "Retirement": "D had been talking about assisted living in terms of whether or not she needed it – whether she could still do things for herself, or whether she needed someone to do for her the sorts of things that assisted living does for residents. It seems to me that while that's one valid way of thinking about it, it's not the only one. There's "needs to", but there's also "gets to".
I said as much, and brought her up short when I told her that for me, this was political. "What do you mean, 'political'?"
I said, with some emphasis, 'I think women should get to retire, same as men do.'"
--"10+ Amazing Tattoos That Turn Scars Into Works Of Art".
--"Jewelry Designed to Look Like Fashionable Dragon Scale Armor".
--"Amazing Photos Reveal the Work of Britain’s First Tattoo Artist in Victorian Times".