- Listened to the new Sleater-Kinney album somewhere north of eight times.
- Seriously considered driving to Raleigh in April for the one show remotely near me that's not sold out yet. (Road trip, anyone?)
- Watched Pride twice.
- Listened to this cover of Bread and Roses about fifty times.
- Sighed with relief when New York was not frozen in ice for seventy years, because I have Megabus tickets for Saturday and I want to see the goddamn Victorian mourning fashion exhibit before it closes, for fuck's sake.
- Got most of the way to done with the book of vintage fashion paper dolls I've been working on.
- Learned how to make rag dolls.
- Made two rag dolls (third is in progress)
- Signed up to volunteer at Scrap DC.
- Napped probably more than I should have, idk
- Seriously considered sponsoring a mine-detecting giant rat as a birthday present for my sister. Got hung up on what to name it. (Diglett? Scabbers? Rizzo?)
- Decided to make sister a pom-pom chandelier in her sorority colors instead.
- Made a whole lot of pom-poms.
- Still thinking about that rat, though.
1. Pick up Where You Left Off: MCU, Peggy/Steve time travel shenanigans. Written before Cap 2 hit theaters and way too throughly Jossed. Missing the chunk in the middle where the story goes, but I did figure out how it ended.
( Peggy walks into Howard’s lab carrying a stack of files, but the room is empty. )
2. probably meant to be steve/bucky/nat, written pre-cap 2 and thus abandoned, but there were some lines I liked and should salvage for something else. hm.
( Steve’s reckless. Always had been. )
3. Steve/Bucky in a Canadian shack. As you do.
( It’s quiet here. )
4. Sam/Nat, possibly the one where they flirt with each other to embarrass Steve but then end up meaning it on accident? Not sure.
( It’s for emergencies. Sam knows this. )
5. This was going to be a thing about Steve working behind the scenes so Bucky could safely come in from the cold.
( Red Carpet Inn, Baltimore, MD )
6.The 2015 Howling Commando Family Reunion, which was definitely gonna get gate-crashed by supersoldiers who don't know how to talk about their feelings.
( When Bethy pulled in to the parking lot at the campground, Friday morning, Jill was already waiting with a clipboard and a harried expression. )
7. Relatedly, a thing about times the Howling Commandos met up after the war.
( None of the neighbors knew how they managed it, but the Moritas got their farm back after the war. )
8. MCU daemon AU, mostly Cap & Bucky. I got as far as figuring out what happened to Bucky's daemon (thankfully, nothing permanent) and figuring out most of the characters' daemons, and having done that sort of failed to write the actual story. Whoops?
( fic bit & list of daemons )
There is also a Pushing Daisies thing I am saving for later because it's the only not-MCU WIP of any substance, and also because I still think I might figure out how to write a sex scene in the Jim Dale narrator voice eventually.
Meanwhile, having finished my own Yuletide story, I've been trying to clear out some other WIPs. Anyone willing to beta 4k of GotG fic in which the Quill family has a sad yard sale?
Speaking of Yuletide: Plan A is currently set aside in favor of a Plan B I actually know how to write, which will at least meet the minimum. Anyone know how to semi-competently construct a mystery plot who is willing to offer advice on Plan A?
One of them does roller derby in Arizona and appears to have turned out to be an okay-ish human, and at least now she has an appropriate outlet for her excess aggression.
One is an event planner who takes a lot of duckface selfies, which is not even a tiny bit surprising.
And the third? The third is, apparently, currently suing the makers of the naked dating reality show she appeared on for not blurring out her ladyparts. Based on everything she's quoted as saying in various articles on the subject, she has not acquired one single ounce of self-awareness since we were fourteen.
Holy SHIT, you guys. I can't even gloat. This is too weird to gloat about.
Anyone off work for any of that time, and interested in road-tripping?
In the meantime, anyone not working a 9-5 would be SUPER welcome this week if they wanted come hang out at my place for a few hours-- just having another human around is, I find, really surprisingly useful as a way to get me to get things done. You don't have to help with the shit-organizing or anything, it is literally just that I am total balls at self-motivating and get more done in the presence of others.
So I just got home from CVS, where the pharmacist told me they had never received a reply to the fax, which was sent sent FOUR full business days ago, and therefore they had no meds for me. I have not had a phone call from my doctor about this at any point, and neither have they.
I wish I could say this was shocking and out of character, but that would be total bullshit. I think the longest I've gone without experiencing a fuck-up of this magnitude was maaaaaaaybe four months. I can count on one hand the number of times anyone at the practice has returned a phone call after I've left them a message, and I have been given incorrect prescriptions (usually dosage or number of pills; they do at least generally write down the correct medication) on multiple occasions.
Tomorrow morning, I will be calling them to ask for 1) my goddamn script, and 2) a referral to a practice that had at least a moderate interest in actually providing mental health care. I have minimal confidence in getting either.
Does anyone have recommendations for DC-area mental health practicioners? BCBS a plus, proximity to Mount Rainier a delightful bonus but, at this point, not mandatory.
When I first began living on my own, I didn’t really have any furniture. I started with an IKEA bed and a hand-me-down dresser; from there, I added wobbly particle-board bookshelves and lumpy couches left behind by previous housemates. By the time I was getting ready to move into my current house, a year and a half ago, most of my furniture was, frankly, kind of crappy.
So I started scouring Craigslist, and checking the furniture section at the thrift store, and called in favors from a few friends who owned vans or SUVs. When I moved into my new place, I had ditched most of the old stuff and replaced it with better-made, better-looking vintage pieces, almost none of which cost more than $200 individually (and that was for a midcentury modern dining table with eight teak chairs). Since then, I’ve also swapped out most of my particle-board bookshelves for hardwood replacements. I still pick up nice pieces when I see them and the price is right— most recently, a glass-fronted cabinet ($25), a velvet settee ($300, which is more than I’d usually pay), and a coffee table/console/end table set ($100).
Actual furniture & art currently in my house.
There are a lot of reasons I prefer my current furnishings to the old ones. Well-made vintage pieces are sturdier, last longer, can better survive dis- and re-assembly, and (in my opinion, anyway) generally look nicer. I do still have a couple of Billy bookcases and a Lillesand bed, but I am also a human person under the age of 40 and living within 50 miles of an IKEA, so that’s kind of inevitable.
There’s one other good reason for buying vintage that gets overlooked. The furniture and other housewares I’ve bought secondhand will not lose value; in fact, should I ever resell them they will probably go for more than I paid.
Because here’s the thing: if I hit a rough patch, or an unexpected medical bill, or other major unplanned expense, I am probably not going to have to resort to hocking my laptop or my few pieces of good jewelry. I can sell my 1930s enamel-topped breakfast table (bought from Craigslist for $85; would resell for $200 easily), or my 1920s spool cabinet (bought from an estate sale for $25, would fetch $250+ at an antique store), or a few of the thrifted paintings off my walls. They are all lovely things that I enjoy owning very much, but I would be fine without them and I would find equivalent replacements eventually.
So: let’s say you want to start divesting yourself of particle board. How should you start? What should you look for? How much should you be willing to pay?
( they're more like guidelines, really )
Dear Santa: You are a rock star and I am wildly unlikely to be unhappy with your story. Things I like: adventures, inventive use of tropes, female characters getting cool stuff to do, pining (especially pining that is resolved happily), outsider perspectives, fish-out-of-water hijinks, found families, mistaken identities, secret identities, interesting worldbuilding. I am not fond of power imbalances, significant age differences, or noncon.
( requests! )
Past Yuletide letters: 2013, 2012, 2011
Am having my periodic "should I learn to vid? I kind of want to learn to vid" phase, mostly because the lyrics to "Combat Rock" are SUCH a Captain America vid that I feel like it might actually be a little TOO on the nose.
In other news, have been having wonky sleep patterns and not getting as much writing/comicking done as I'd like, so probably now is not the time to learn to vid. Sigh. But I have been doing stuff! Went to a zine thing in Brooklyn; went to Capclave; did the Halloween window at the shop.
I feel like I'm posting a lot more on tumblr than here, though. Sorry, guys. But I'm putting together my Yuletide signup and will have a letter shortly!
eta OH ALSO I forgot I started a set of Bucky Barnes paper dolls at some point, that is a thing I would like to finish eventually and also I guess i should make a dude paper doll set at some point right?
Which paper doll set(s) are you most likely to want, should I make them?
Orphan Black (with interchangeable hairstyles for each clone)
Ladies in Sensible Armor (feat. Alanna of Trebond and Sabriel)
Ladies of Classic Who
actually just one whole book for Romana, why not
Ladies of AtLA/Korra
Trying to decide what I want my next comics project to be. There are kind of a lot of contenders, and I can really only do one at a time. Would very much appreciate opinions, as I am at the “but I want ALL of them, right now” stage and cannot narrow it down.
Option 1: Adapt the YA novel I wrote some time ago into a comic.
Elevator pitch: Teen girl reads too many fantasy novels, longs to be a sparkly special chosen fairy princess. Learns that magic is real and some people are, in fact, sparkly, special, etc; however, she is not one of them. Her bratty kid sister is, though. Also, magic is dangerous and adventures are scary. Kind of what you get if you put Un Lun Dun in a blender with Northanger Abbey, salted generously with Narnia. Kind of.
Pros: already know how the story plays out, have good sense of what the characters look like, not super long as the novel ran a bit short.
Cons: Still much longer than anything I’ve done, would need to write a proper script first and probably make a lot of changes, possibly a bit of a stretch for me drawing-ability-wise.
Option 2: Adapt a friend’s screenplay into a comic.
Elevator pitch: Superhero story about what happens when you have superpowers that aren’t up to scratch for actual crime-fighting. (You do children’s parties, is what happens.)
Pros: Screenplay would be easier to turn into a comic script than a novel. Has majority-female cast, characters of color, queer characters. LOVE the concept, and feel like it’s actually something superhero comics haven’t done much of.
Cons: Long, again. Not my own concept, and while friend is interested in collaborating, have never actually drawn someone else’s script before. Several characters are clowns, and I am scared of clowns and do not want to draw them repeatedly.
Option 3: Make a bunch of short comics about witches.
Elevator pitch: Remember that post that went around recently, about two witches who both arrive to claim the same firstborn baby? I kind of tripped and fell and worked out character designs and names and some bits of plot for this. Basically it’s what happens when Molly Weasley and Maleficent have to co-parent; many Odd Couple shenanigans ensue.
Pros: Could do this as a bunch of short comics, rather than one long thing. Really adore the concept. Have worked out many, many jokes about the Maleficent-esque witch’s familiar, who was a cat before she turned him into a human and made him go to law school so he could handle her legal and financial affairs.
Cons: Not actually my own idea. Have nothing written yet, and not sure if idea will cohere into an actual, engaging story.
Option 4: Put together anthology of short nonfiction comics about amazing women in history.
Elevator pitch: Collection of 2-4 page comics about little-known but really really awesome women in history, each accompanied by a 1-page bio. Would feature Tumblr faves like Julie D’Aubigny; my personal wish list for this includes Hannah Senesh, Mary Bowser, Lucy Stone, and a few others. The friend I worked out the idea with suggested the title “Firebrand,” which I LOVE.
Pros: Relevant to my interests, would put my obsessive knowledge of historical costume to good use, have been wanting to do a Kickstarter-able project and this seems like a good candidate.
Cons: Collaborative projects take a ton of effort and energy, between rounding up contributors and nudging everyone til they send in their stuff and actually putting the book together and so on. While I pride myself on my cat-herding skills, not sure if this is achievable right now.
As I said, I am currently paralyzed by indecision and cannot choose. Thoughts and suggestions welcome. Anyone?
1. Upon entering, ask "Is this a thrift store?" The salesgirl will patiently explain the difference between a thrift store and a vintage store (to wit: thrift stores sell whatever they are donated, from any time period; vintage stores sell items carefully hand-picked from, mostly, the decades prior to 1980). Thirty seconds later, tell the friend you have been on the phone with since you entered that you're at the thrift store.
2. You are, of course, here because you have been invited to a costume party; even odds on whether it's a Seventies party or a Gatsby party. Tell the salesgirl you want either a Pucci print maxidress or a beaded flapper dress.
3. When she explains that those items are rare, expensive and (especially in the case of flapper dresses) basically nonexistent in a wearable size or condition, get extremely huffy. Be sure to dismiss out of hand the half-dozen historically-accurate alternatives you are offered.
4. When the small child you have, for some reason, brought with you begins to get bored/cranky/hungry, do not under any circumstances change your plans to accommodate this. When the salesgirl attempts to distract and entertain your child by inviting them to try on hats, grab your child by the upper arm and order them to wait patiently without touching anything. Repeat every three to five minutes as needed.
5. When browsing, never read price tags. Instead, hold each item up and demand to know how much it costs. Do not show the salesgirl the tag until prompted to do so. Once informed of the price, emit a small, disbelieving huff. Honestly, $18 for a signed piece of 1960s costume jewelry? That's barely less than half of what a lower-quality piece would cost new! Outrageous.
6. When told that an item of clothing is not your size, try it on anyway. In fact, try on as many items as you can, ignoring your salesgirl's recommendations whenever possible. If you pop a zipper or shred an armscye in the process, that is hardly your fault.
7. Do not, under any circumstances, put clothes back after trying them on. Endeavor to leave as many items as possible on the floor, in a pile, unzipped and inside out.
8. Ask if you can put a pair of $5 clip earrings on hold until the weekend. When told there is a 24-hour limit to holds, insist that you will come back for them. Do not give in!
9. Time to make your sole purchase: a pair of $6 sunglasses. Here is where your earlier disbelieving huffs will pay off. Having established that the shop's prices are insultingly high, you may now haggle. Just like you would at H&M.
10. Pay with a credit card. Do not ever come back for the clip earrings, ever, no matter what.