icon request?

Aug. 23rd, 2017 01:56 pm
yhlee: Angel Investigations' card ("Hope lies to mortals": A.E. Housman). (AtS hope)
[personal profile] yhlee
I am finding that I would really like to have a sea/ocean icon. I like blues/teals and I am also fond of seahorses and sand dollars. Would anyone be willing to make me an icon from some public domain image in exchange for a flash fiction or simple cartoon/sketch or something?

ETA: While I'm at it, what's the difference besides animation style between Star Wars: Clone Wars (older, 2D animation) and Star Wars: The Clone Wars (newer, 3D animation)? I am strongly biased aesthetically toward 2D animation but will watch the latter if the story/characters are good...

Reading Wednesday

Aug. 23rd, 2017 12:26 pm
yuuago: (Small Trolls - Veeti - Skygazing)
[personal profile] yuuago
Last Finished: My Brother's Husband by Gengoroh Tagame. Absolutely lovely manga. The library only has the first volume right now, but hopefully they'll get the rest as it becomes available - I really want to read more of it.

Currently Reading: Forge by Jan Zwicky. Poetry collection, Canadian author. Lots of inspiration taken from classical music here. Also little sprinklings of winter imagery here and there, which is nice. Definitely one that I'll keep and read again.

Also currently reading: Still picking my way through With Fire and Sword by Henryk Sienkiewicz. I wish this came divided into two books; I'd probably be finished it by now if it were more portable.

Reading Next: I took Trans/Portraits by Jackson Wright Shultz out from the library, but... it seems a bit heavy for bus-reading. Might pick up something else first, depending on when I'm done with the poetry.
beatrice_otter: Han and Leia--Kiss (Han and Leia)
[personal profile] beatrice_otter
You guys FAIL SO HARD.  How, how, how, how, HOW has NOBODY recced this fic to me?  This is like, my JAM.  It is what I have been waiting YEARS for.  It is a 200k word (for now) Star Wars time travel AU where Leia goes back in time from the end of TFA to the beginning of ANH.  And changes everything.  It is a WONDERFUL story, an incredibly fresh and novel take on one of my favorite tropes, the characters are so wonderfully written (and you can tell the author has a great grasp on the characters to get them so well in situations that are so different from what they were in the original timeline), THIS FIC IS SO AWESOME AND YOU NEED TO READ IT NOW.

(If you're not fond of WIPs, it doesn't end on a cliffhanger or anything.)

(Also, the summary is in 1st person, but that's because it's dialogue from the first chapter--the story isn't written in 1st person, if that's a dealbreaker for you.)

Of Queens, Knights, and Pawns (199023 words) by chancecraz
Chapters: 15/?
Fandom: Star Wars - All Media Types, Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens (2015), Star Wars Original Trilogy
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Leia Organa, Anakin Skywalker | Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Bail Organa, Breha Organa, CT-7567 | Rex, Mon Mothma, Davits Draven
Additional Tags: Time Travel, Time Travel Fix-It, Skywalker Family Feels, Implied/Referenced Torture, Angst
Summary: I went to sleep on the worst day of my life and woke to find myself in the past on the second worst day of my life. As experiences go, I don’t recommend it.

good job, me

Aug. 22nd, 2017 10:29 pm
rosabelle: closeup of andros/zhane hug with the caption love (Default)
[personal profile] rosabelle
So I have some WIP's that I have not touched in years and years and years and recently I have been looking at them and thinking, "yes, I could salvage parts of this" except sometimes it's like someone else wrote the story and I have zero memory of where I was going with things. Which is to be expected after seven years, I guess, except I left myself notes on what was going to happen in the sequel. Because I assumed I could remember what would happen in part one, even though I have long since discovered I should never make that assumption.

(I still have a sticky note that says "Zhane and Karone are mermaids!" It's been years. I have never remembered what story this was supposed to be in reference to, or even if I'm talking about literal mermaids or if it's supposed to be, like, some kind of metaphor? WHO KNOWS.)

Nice and tidy~ ☆

Aug. 22nd, 2017 08:03 pm
yuuago: (DDADDS - Damien - Glam)
[personal profile] yuuago
I spent a good portion of Sunday cleaning out my cosmetic drawers. I feel like I have SO MUCH ROOM now.

Cosmetics blathering )

icons: Movies

Aug. 22nd, 2017 09:17 pm
meganbmoore: (when princesses grow fangs)
[personal profile] meganbmoore
 57 x Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny
42 x Painted Skin: The Resurrection
63 x Memories of the Sword

here )

(no subject)

Aug. 22nd, 2017 05:32 pm
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
[personal profile] alexseanchai
Astronomers Without Borders eclipse glasses donation program

don't throw away your eclipse glasses! mail them to Astronomers Without Borders, or deliver them to the nearest organization (most likely a local school) collecting them for AWB, so that students in South America and Africa can safely watch the next eclipse!

(no subject)

Aug. 22nd, 2017 02:46 pm
staranise: A star anise floating in a cup of mint tea (Default)
[personal profile] staranise
Yesterday afternoon I was in a weird mood--I thought I was going over to [personal profile] goshawk's house for an hour or so to cuddle with her cat and do some writing, but I ended up wanting to be alone to think and brood and sleep, and ended up skipping dinner and staying until ten PM. The cat was glad, since he's lonely without his human, but I'm still not quite sure what's up with me. Then I went home and ranted about the adults involved in the Indigo Children idea, which was very soothing.

I nailed today's job interview, or else I've never nailed anything in my life. I want the position desperately. But they said they'd take "a few weeks" to decide. Siiigh.

On the upside, Mom was able to afford to pay someone to come in and drywall my kitchen and bathroom. So yes, everything there is now covered in drywall dust, but once I clean it off I get to paint and make things look actually inhabited.

[story] The Statue Beneath the Sea

Aug. 22nd, 2017 02:23 pm
yhlee: Flight Rising Spiral dragon, black-red-gold (Flight Rising Jedao baby Spiral)
[personal profile] yhlee
For [personal profile] storme.
Prompt: dépaysement.

The Statue Beneath the Sea

Once upon an ocean, a statue dwelled beneath the waves. In days past the statue had been brightly painted and crowned with gilt, with jewels for eyes and jewels set in its magnificent wings. It remembered dancers crowding its plaza and lovers exchanging promise-poems beneath its benevolent gaze, parades of helmeted youths and prophetesses giving speeches in the sinuous language of time unwound.

It had never met the general whose victories it was meant to commemorate, although it knew that some statues had that privilege. But it had their smooth face and their smile, and even though the jewels of its eyes had long ago been stolen by treasure-scavengers, it had something of the general's vision. It knew the stories of the general and their honored lover the lady scholar, and how they had built the old city to a precipice of grandeur.

Those days had passed long ago, however, and the wars of weather-mages had sunk the city below the sea. No one now living remembered the city's name the way it had been spoken by its inhabitants, although it lingered in distorted whispers and siren-songs that wound through the tides. The statue remembered its people and yearned for whatever scraps of myth it could gather from the gossip of gulls and sailors.

The fish and the anemones, mindful of the statue's melancholy, spoke with it little. In truth it would have welcomed their chatter. But when it asked them for stories of war (in honor of its general), they could only share tales of cannonades and blood staining the foam, so different from the swift chariots and dust-clouds it knew of, and its melancholy only deepened.

At last an entourage of dragons, distant cousins of the Dragon King Under the Sea, visited the sunken city. One of the dragons, hardly more than an eggling as dragons reckon time, especially liked to explore vanished civilizations. She was particularly taken by the statue's eroded marble surfaces, seeing in them the litany of years gone and years to come.

The statue told the dragon of its vanished city, and its general's victories--more fable than truth by this point, not that there was anyone to correct it--and the dragon listened eagerly. She began telling the statue's stories to the sharks and the seahorses, the terns and the turtles. Soon the creatures of the sea came to listen to the statue as well, and to honor it with their tribute.

It wasn't long before the statue's old plaza was surrounded by nets woven of pirates' beards, and strands of coins marked around the rim with praises to octopus gods, and bits and pieces of filigree armor snatched from soldiers fallen overboard. The creatures of the sea, not to mention the dragons, began frequenting the statue's plaza, and carrying out their own ceremonies there.

While the statue knew that the people it had once known would never return, and that the old city was dead in truth, it found some comfort in seeing a new one arise where the old had been.

(no subject)

Aug. 22nd, 2017 01:21 pm
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
[personal profile] alexseanchai
The blood bank emailed me: A+ donors needed. (Guess my blood type.) It has in fact been over eight weeks since I donated last.

Problem: I am fucking moving. I do not have enough physical cope as it is. Blood donation knocks me the fuck over!

Auuuuugh.

(no subject)

Aug. 22nd, 2017 11:57 am
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
[personal profile] alexseanchai
I need extra hands around here. Preferably attached to strong arms, steely spines, and sturdy legs, with a head on those shoulders that can intuit what I need to happen better than I can either intuit or explain the things.

In lieu of this (because TELEPORTER!!! *shakes fist*, and also all my immediate family are Occupied Elsewhere today):

Would any y'all who believe in and understand how to accomplish the "sending healing energy over a distance" thing please do the thing for me? Not necessarily healing, though I wouldn't exactly say no to that; strength, resilience, anything that you have to spare at the moment and that you think I could use in order to get all my stuff moving-ready and the apartment sparkly clean. Protective and cleansing energies would also be welcome.

If you want to do a trade, drop me a comment with a prompt: a single word, a brief phrase, a song lyric, an evocative image. After I'm all moved, I'll stitch all the prompts into a story and post it for all y'all to see. :)
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
[personal profile] alexseanchai
*waves to somebody who may not wish to be named* So many coffees! Thank you!

Can someone—who has got more brain to think of google terms than I have presently got—point me at moving-out checklists? Apartment-departing–specific if possible?

Had a Good 1st Day!

Aug. 22nd, 2017 07:32 am
amarie24: (doctor claire temple)
[personal profile] amarie24
I be still sleepy this morning (I kinda wanna go back to sleep until 9am-my pharmacology class thankfully only starts at 1pm), but I had a pretty good day yesterday. Wasn't nearly as bad as I thought, teehee! :D

Also, happy post-eclipse day, everyone! Love ya'll!

And how are ya'll doin'? :D


--Amarie

A Theory of Fun for Game Design

Aug. 22nd, 2017 06:02 am
yhlee: icosahedron (d20) (d20 (credit: bag_fu on LJ))
[personal profile] yhlee
Raph Koster's A Theory of Fun for Game Design (2nd ed.) has been on my wishlist for something like the past five years. I picked it up recently by ordering it through my local game store (which is technically also a bookstore and is in the process of signing on with distributors or however that goes). It is an absolute delight.

I'm glad I sprung for the hardcopy of this for two reasons: one, I like to mark up my nonfiction, and two, its formatting! The left-hand page in every two-page spread is text; the right-hand page has an illustration related to the material on the left-hand page. While the illustrations are not technically the most accomplished, they are generally extremely effective communicative cartoons or diagrams.

This book comes with a ton of blurbs, and Cory Doctorow's--"Does for games what Understanding Comics [by Scott McCloud] did for sequential art"--pretty much sums up how I feel. I've read other game design books that were insightful, or thorough, but the Koster is accessible and very interesting in its approach to what makes games games, and how to make them fun (in the instances where that's a thing--cf. Brenda Romero's Train).

One of Koster's arguments is that "with games, learning is the drug" (40)--a game that interests us is one that strikes the necessary balance of not too easy (Tic-Tac-Toe, for most adults) and not too hard (multiple failure modes possible, depending on the individual--witness me and chess or go [1]). He suggests that games (and play, which is common in a lot of young animals!) are an artifact of how we try to learn survival skills, and moves forward into making suggestions as to how to move the form forward into values/skills more suitable for the modern era than "kill things" or "jump over things" or "search for all the things."

[1] Joe gave up on teaching me go when I told him I have severe difficulty with visual patterns. In fact, I am starting to wonder if aphantasia just screws me over for this kind of game in general. :p

There's also a particularly interesting chapter on ethics and entertainment where he discusses the difference between the game system and the flavor/dressing:

The bare mechanics of a game may indeed carry semantic freighting, but odds are that it will be fairly abstract. A game about aiming is a game about aiming, and there's no getting around that. It's hard to conceive of a game about aiming that isn't about shooting, but it has been done--there are several gmaes where instead of shooting bullets with a gun, you are instead shooting pictures with a camera. (170)

The bare mechanics of the game do not determine its meaning. Let's try a thought experiment. Let's picture a mass murder game wherein there is a gas chamber shaped like a well. You the player are dropping innocent victims down into the gas chamber, and they come in all shapes and sizes. There are old ones and young ones, fat ones and tall ones. As they fall to the bottom, they grab onto each other and try to form human pyramids to get to the top of the well. Should they manage to get out, the game is over and you die. But if you pack them in tightly enough, the ones on the bottom succumb to the gas and die.

I do not want to play this game. Do you? Yet it is Tetris. (172)


In general, Koster has a background in game design AND writing AND music, and he draws on all three in his analysis of games, as well as other disciplines (e.g. psychology). It makes the book a scintillating read. I can't believe I waited so long to read this--but it was exactly what I wanted to read last week, so hey. Highly recommended.
gramarye1971: white teacup of green tea with wooden chopsticks (Tea and Chopsticks)
[personal profile] gramarye1971
...considering that I've got tickets to head back to Japan in three months, I should probably finish my trip report from last October. -_-;; Forth, into the North.

Previously:
Day 0/0.5 - Planes and trains
Day 1 - Akita and Aomori
Day 2 - Osorezan

I'd moved my trip to Osorezan to Sunday because the northern Japan weather forecast for Monday was not promising: constant drizzly rain with some heavier showers possible. At dinner on Sunday, Friend J and I discussed our plans to cross the Tsugaru Strait via the underground train tunnel and get to Hakodate, the northern terminus of the Hokkaido Shinkansen line, and see if we could go elsewhere in Hokkaido if weather permitted.

(Note: Hakodate is pronounced as its individual syllables indicate -- Ha-ko-da-te -- and not "Hako-date" as in "month and date.")

Since we had only one day to work with and didn't want to stay in Hokkaido much past 6 PM, we looked over our options and decided that a trip to Sapporo as well would be out of the question -- too far to go without an overnight stay. On the off-chance that the weather was nicer than expected and we really wanted to go off the beaten path, we stopped by the train station and got the friendly (albeit somewhat perplexed) JR employees to issue us with tickets for the shinkansen from Aomori to Hakodate, and then for the Hokuto Limited Express to the city of Muroran further down the coast. Muroran is a old steel-and-shipping town, the kind of decaying industrial city that I'm familiar with from my Rust Belt childhood, and J and I selected it as a possible excursion point because we literally knew nothing about it and wanted to become less ignorant about a part of Japan that most people almost certainly would not think to visit. The JR employees were very helpful in getting our tickets in order and did not show any confusion as to what on earth might have prompted these two giant foreigners to want to visit the Japanese equivalent of Steel City or Wigan Pier.

The following day, however, the weather forecast looked wet and dismal enough that we decided not to go to Muroran after all, and instead chose to stay in Hakodate until our return train. (I was still struggling with a head cold, which at this point had progressed to a constantly dripping nose and a near-complete loss of taste and smell.) However, the rain and the head cold were instrumental in leading us on an interesting, uh, adventure.

Hakodate in the rain, and an unexpected museum visit. )

So that was the adventure of Hakodate. The next day, we'd be heading south for the second leg of the trip. Onward to the onsen town!

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