magibrain: This alt text intentionally left blank. (This icon intentionally left blank.)
Today, in an effort to avoid actually writing anything (because writing is scary), I programmed functionality into my demographics/random sets generator which let you import comma-delimited lists of values. This, combined with the option I worked up a while ago which let you import random sets from the demographics generator into the bingo generator, means that I can do wacky stuff like working up a bingo card with a bunch of randomly-generated sets of things like fandom, trope, and wordcount. See below:

I sound my fearsome procrastination across the land. )

Now, the demographics generator (unlike the bingo generator) is still in alpha, is desperately ugly, and lacks a ton of stuff that would make it easier to use – like, say, paging down to show you that your options have, in fact, been added when you click the button in the comma-delimited list options. That's because I'm a back-end developer by trade, and just getting jQuery to play nicely enough that it would import the comma-delimited list in the first place meant an hour of hand-to-hand coding. Nicer stuff will happen later, once my urge to procrastinate on writing exceeds my frustration with front-end technologies again.

But, you know, if this sort of challenge appeals to you, there's now a clunky interface on my site that allows you to set up bingo cards like this.

In other news, today I have learned that jQuery does not like passing data out of its AJAX scope, and that you have to tell it not to run its AJAX asynchronously if you actually want to provide its information to another part of your script. Even if that part of the script comes after the AJAX call. ...I feel like that one, I should have known.
magibrain: Peter Burke would like to know where you are at all times. (White Collar)
So I was looking up Kate Moreau's actress, because I was toying with the idea of doing some sort of Gunnerkrigg Court Realm of the Dead ficlet with her and I wanted to know which psychopomps would be fighting over her when some guy with a terrifying visage &/ bad costume showed up to offer her an out.

(That idea is backburnered because I realized I didn't have a plot for it. This happens surprisingly frequently.)

Anyway, I ran into the line, "At the end of 2012, Alex [Daddario] starred in the music video, "Imagine Dragons' Radioactive"."

Huh. Okay. I went to check that out.

This is one of those videos I've seen a grand total of once, both because I think the Lindsey Stirling version sounds better (strings! I fall so hard for string renditions of things) and because I'm not a big fan of the "pretty white girl, suffering white guys, and villainous brown men" imagery in the vid itself.

But... no, that's Kate. Engaging in some illicit underground muppet fighting. For the salvation of white guys and teddy bears everywhere. Not sure how to feel about this.

Part of me wants to prompt it as an AU on [ profile] collarcorner, and part of me wants to go back to pretending that actors only ever exist in one role shhhhh.
magibrain: A brain with eyes and an adorably innocent smile which you should not at all trust. (magibrain)
...I find myself vaguely wanting to write A/B/O fic, except less with sex and more with navigating tricky power dynamics and slews of body dysphoria, and with a heavily tweaked version of the whole A/B/O premise.

(Basically, the idea in my brain is that Alpha, Beta and Omega are just psychophysical modes people operate in, and while people tend to have "baseline" modes that they operate in for long stretches – sometimes even their entire lives – people can switch from mode to mode in response to various physical or psychological stimuli. Like, a baseline beta might find themselves going omega or alpha after a major trauma, for example. And there would be drugs and such which could affect what mode people operated in. Plus, while the modes would have specific physiological effects – people operating in alpha mode might have overactive adrenal glands and produce more testosterone, while people operating in omega mode would experience heat and all its attendant fun – it would only affect personality in as much as, say, gayness does. In that there would be a ton of stereotypes and there would be established cultures which people might or might not do any social commerce with, and aside from that, it's not really something you could tell by looking at someone.)

(...though you could probably tell it by scent. Because that seems to be a thing?)

(Also, people would be able to resist physical urges, with varying degrees of difficulty from "I am having this strong craving right now!" to "I am experiencing this with the intensity of an addiction." And there would probably be a lot of discussion on medical and political stages about that.)

I don't know. I've read a grand total of two A/B/O fics in my life – feels like the start of something and The toppiest girl in the school, and ironically neither of them is for a fandom I'm actually in – and I feel like this may just be a continuation of my picking at the assumed conventions of tropes I don't actually write or read (see also), which always makes me feel a little weird. But I feel like, given some of the discussion in the prompt thread for feels like the start of something, it might be a weird little space to explore which other people are also interested in seeing explored. And it does seem like there's a healthy movement in A/B/O writing areas to dissect the heck out of the trope, from what I've read.

Of course, it also doesn't help that I already have way too many other projects clamoring for my attention. Including the one where Neal is stuck on a magical Greyhound for five years.

This is one of the ways you can tell I'm ace. I find tropes that are deeply rooted in kinky sex and then expend considerable time and energy carefully plucking out the sexybits so I can nest in the kinky power dynamics. <_< One of these days I'll write and post my WC OT3 fic and it will be 80,000 words of neither sex nor romance, continuing my trend of OT3 fic which is neither sex nor romance, and everyone will be able to tell me that I'm doing it wrong. AND I WILL LAUGH FROM ATOP MY ASEXY THRONE, I SHALL EAT THE CAKE THAT IS MY BIRTHRIGHT, AND KNOW THAT I AM THE OVERMIND, THE ETERNAL WILL OF THE ACE COMMU – no, wait, that got away from me, sorry.
magibrain: A radiation symbol. It appears to be a little bit on fire. (Default)
My partner introduced me to the WTFery of Dark Silent Hill, Google Maps version. (Just... go forward.)

Now I want a fic where this happens to Peter and Neal. They're just driving along, off to talk to a witness or examine a crime scene or authenticate a statue or whatever, and then suddenly the entire world around their car is a terrifying melting Goya and Peter slams on the brakes and, you know, horror ensues.

...I'm not sure I want to write this fic, but I want it to happen.

I have no idea what the hell happened to that Google Maps car. But it cannot possibly have been anything good.
magibrain: Hope you like eels. It's EEL SEASON out there. (It's EEL SEASON.)
So, I'm not sure exactly why I decided that a story covering Neal Caffrey's entire adult life through the the resolution of Most Wanted was a good idea, but I did, and that, I feel, was a mistake. It's currently unfinished at 8,000 words, in four parts. None of these things were my intention.

In fairness, it totally fits one of the prompts, if you squint and tilt your head and take certain things very thematically. of the prompts that isn't anywhere near the bingo I'm working on. But it fits into a series with two other prompts! of which is on the bingo I'm working on.


I feel like I could have had at least one of these fics finished by today, if I hadn't taken a weird left turn somewhere and found myself writing out 15,000 words of fiction where the US correctional system is a modern version of convict leasing, but on the plus side, I have 15,000 words of fiction where the US correctional system is a modern version of convict leasing!

Look, I never claimed to be good at this.

(I also feel a bit guilty about all those words, because I've totally been using fanfic as a way to hide from the stress of unemployment when I should probably be spending more of that time doing productive things. Hey, if anyone knows of a San Francisco Bay Area company that wants to hire a PHP/MySQL developer with a bunch of experience and an active interest in picking up new languages but no CS degree, point me their way, aight?)

Stats )
magibrain: "Did they have morality majors at your school?" "No." (Don't ask me; I was not a morality major)
Trauma is a surgical disease. It is cured with bright lights and cold steel.

I can't remember where, when, or how I first came across a series of posts on Making Light called Trauma and You, but I am forever glad I did.

Trauma and You, despite its CYA-ish disclaimer (I am not a physician. I can neither diagnose nor prescribe. These posts are presented for entertainment purposes only. Nothing here is meant to be advice for your particular condition or situation.) does a pretty good job of walking you through a trauma scene – what you're going to see, what's going on behind the scenes (or under the skin), and what you should be doing about it. It provides mnemonics, statistics, and instructions, and if you're the kind of person who likes doing terrible things to your characters and having them patch themselves or each other up, it's a really great reference on how they should be going about that "patching up" thing.

But I think half the reason I keep coming back to it is that, even though some of the medical conditions described are enough to make your skin crawl (there was a meta-blog post elsewhere on the site, wherein one of the posters summed up the author's usual contributions as Long, bloodcurdlingly detailed advice from James D. Macdonald about what to do in event of some dire emergency (heart stops, house floods, leg falls off, children attacked by whale, etc.) Posters stunned into silence. Long, contemplative pause as commenters look thoughtfully at own houses, children, legs, etc. Timid, Piglet-like question. Terrifyingly learned and hope-destroying reply.), the post is often just fun, in a snappy, sardonic, and... occasionally hope-destroying way. Because you get advice like the ever-quotable [...]make sure the scene is safe. There is something over there that munches people. You are a people. Don’t get munched yourself. If you do get munched what you’ve accomplished is this: you’ve incremented the patient count by one and simultaneously you’ve decreased the responder count by one. On a scale from good to bad this is bad. Or the sheer pragmatism of When you’re dealing with trauma, your life is pretty easy. You have 1) Things that’ll kill your patient in the next five minutes, 2) Things that’ll kill your patient in the next hour, 3) Things that’ll kill your patient today, and 4) Things that you don’t really care about.

Trauma and You is broken up into five informative posts, with a couple of Final Exams at the end:

  1. The Basics. So, what’s trauma? It’s the physical world impinging on your tender body. Not to be confused with biology happening (in the form of bugs and germs), or chemicals (poisons, overdoses) happening, or your body breaking down and wearing out and going mysteriously wrong. No, this is more the Force of Gravity sort of stuff.

  2. Shock. Now it’s time to have our little chat about shock. Shock is what kills people. Shock, dear friends, is what will eventually kill you, personally. The only question will be how you got into shock to start with.

  3. Sticks and Stones. You can have a lot of fun memorizing bone names. (For example, the mnemonic for the bones in the wrist is “Some Lovers Try Positions That They Can’t Handle” for Scaphoid, Lunate, Triquetium, Pisiform, Trapezium, Trapezoid, Capitate, Hamate. (You can have even more fun memorizing the names and functions of the twelve cranial nerves, but that’s for another post.)

  4. The Squishy Bits. When crush injuries were first identified (in the trenches of WWI and the London Blitz of WWII) they ran around 90% fatal. Nowadays with fast and efficient EMS they’re down to 50% fatal.

  5. Burns. The amount of smoke inhaled is the number one predictor of mortality in burn injuries, way ahead of the age of the patient or the surface area of the burn. Continue to be suspicious with someone who has escaped from a fire. Sometimes the symptoms of smoke inhalation don’t appear for hours or days.

While I usually have to consult additional resources for various fictional traumas – like this shockingly relevant article on gunshot wounds to the chest, one of my major pieces of research for Misfire – and while I have no illusions that I get everything right when I do write about trauma, the Trauma and You series is almost always my first click, and I know there's a level of verisimilitude in my writing that wouldn't be there without it. Highly recommended.

Also highly recommended: a strong stomach when it comes to various traumatic medical things. Like amputation. And degloving.

Seriously, though, I could have gone my entire life without learning about degloving.

(Crossposted to my srs journal.)
magibrain: Hope you like eels. It's EEL SEASON out there. (It's EEL SEASON.)
Last night I finished and posted the Damaged People installments Tranquility Base, Where The Frown On My Face and Copernius, thereby closing out the first arc of Damaged People. I'm not sure how long exactly that arc took me to write (I think I started it in mid-to-late 2007?) or how much writing is represented by it (I believe it's up above 100k words?), but that sure is a milestone. Of some sort.

Rambling about the end of Arc 1. )

Also, I finally got around to uploading a couple of vids I've had lying around my computer for, er, months or years. Without further ado:

Stargate SG-1: 'Window of Opportunity' to the tune of 'Every Day Is Exactly The Same'. )

Torchwood: Suzie Costello in 'Maneater', to 'People Got A Lotta Nerve' by Neko Case. )

There you go. Enjoy.
magibrain: This alt text intentionally left blank. (This icon intentionally left blank.)
Back in 2007, for reasons which I'm sure made sense at the time, I got the idea to write a fic with Jack Harkness of Torchwood and Sam Tyler of Life on Mars in a bar together, and then furthermore to email it to [personal profile] rionaleonhart without explanation to see what she would do. As it turned out, because Riona is Riona (and because the fic was probably her fault in one way or another to begin with), she calmly beta'd it and sent it back.

That, I think, may have been throwing down the gauntlet.

Because there's something you have to understand about me, and that's that 70%* of my fiction writing is spite-based. A friend believes that I can't write slash? Here is the Doctor having sex with the Master. And also the TARDIS. Riona says a Silent Hill 2/House MD crossover where Chase is James Sunderland is the most frightening idea ever and she should not write it? I write it. Stargate SG-1 decides to be completely simplistic with issues of character death, the nature of identity, and memory? Here is 140,000 words deconstructing that by implication. And then there was the Silent Hill crossover meme, which was basically a (lighthearted, mutually-respectful, and mutually-gleeful) pissing contest with [ profile] jantalaimon over who could write the most, or weirdest, crossover drabblets with Silent Hill. (Among my proudest accomplishments: Winnie the Pooh, The Sims, and Tetris.)

*Completely arbitrary estimate

So I think there's a certain amount of archaeological evidence** to suggest that I started Damaged People purely to see what it would take to get Riona to go "What on earth are you doing, you crazy person?"

**Not in any way archaeological

Which is how I ended up writing what I call "A massively multifandom accidental epic following Sam Tyler (Life On Mars) and Jack Harkness (Doctor Who and Torchwood) on their misadventures, as they explore the galaxy, almost destroy some worlds, and barely save others."

How multifandom, and how epic?

Well, as of the time of this posting, I've written most of the first of a planned three arcs (1: Jack and Sam cavorting around the galaxy; 2: Series 1 of Torchwood, rewritten, expanded, and made more weird; 3: Sam Tyler saves the galaxy), and it's up to 100k words. And the thing's spawned a sequel. It's also up to 22 fandoms the last time I counted, and I keep shoving more in whenever I find a spare corner. (Lie To Me is on the waiting list, for example, and will be added as soon as a compatible plot comes up. Sherlock is in much the same position.) Among the fandoms I've managed to wedge in: Stargate: SG-1, Global Frequency, Pirates of the Caribbean, Google's April Fools jokes, Withnail and I, Avatar: The Last Airbender, Top Gear, and Cube 2: Hypercube.

The story is told mostly from Sam's perspective, with occasional dips into Jack's, so it's unintentionally organized so that if you're familiar with both series of Life on Mars and series one of Torchwood, you're generally only ever as confused as Sam is. Which, you know, can often be Rather Confused.

Anyway! I'm beginning the process of mirroring everything from its original home at [ profile] damageverse to its parallel home at [community profile] damaged_people. If you're interested in my one grand voluntary foray into slash and multifandom crossovers, I invite you to take a look. It's wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey, occasionally extremely sketchy, ranges from pure gen to explicit with warnings and back again, and it will probably never be finished, but new stuff should keep appearing from time to time.
magibrain: A radiation symbol. It appears to be a little bit on fire. (Default)
Okay, so I posted that rundown of fics I wouldn't know how to start, and as it turns out, I still don't know how to start any of them. But I have bits of #4, which I'm still surprised any of you want to read. (Seriously, you people. You're weird. :P )

This is one of those bits. I'm posting it, but you need to know a few things about the world, first. And by "a few things", I mean "a small novel in exposition".

An introduction to Beyond The Rift, inasmuch as it's interpreted in these braintics, and Damaged People, inasmuch as it's interpreted in these braintics. )

Well. That was... some exposition.

TO SET THE SCENE: Jack Harkness is visiting the SGC and they've just wrapped up the debrief with Hammond. Sam's probably retreated to someone's lab to process things/get started on figuring out what's going on here. Daniel is sticking around, Harkness has been invited to stay the night, and O'Neill really just wants to go home, take more painkillers than normal people ever have to need, and put his head under a pillow for a good, long time. I think Daniel just offered to show Harkness to the VIP rooms. Harkness has other ideas.

In which putting Jack and Jack in a room is only a good idea insofar as it might keep the planet from blowing up later. )
magibrain: The gateway to the stars stands waiting. (Stargate)
Randomly, I went off and found Meyers-Briggs types for all four members of Classic SG-1. At least, all four members of Classic SG-1 as my brain interprets them, and my brain occasionally contradicts canon in rather spectacular ways (frex, magibrain!Sam is largely asexual, and Chimera never happened), so for this to make any sense you're going to have to buy into my versions of the characters for a post or so.


A lot of neepery and a really cool pattern. )

It's like the time when I decided that SG-1 was a project by the Asgard to recreate the Four Great Races in miniature, and the parallels kept getting spookier. I think my brain is an alchemist.

(other potential post-cut closing teaser line: "And this is why SG-1 was tragically canceled at the end of the seventh season.")

[ETA]: I feel like Jonas is probably an ESTP, and I haven't watched nearly enough of S9 and S10 to guess on Cam and Vala.
magibrain: The gateway to the stars stands waiting. (Stargate)
I spent most of yesterday beating fanfic into shape, which is something I haven't done in a good long time. But yesterday was something of a special occasion: just under a week ago, I finished Beneath a Beating Sun in draft, and on Sunday, I'd finished my preliminary polishing of the first 16 chapters. (The 18th – final – chapter still needs more work, but it's done in draft, and that gives me enough confidence to move ahead.) So Sunday was the day when I went twenty rounds hand-to-hand with trying to get BaBS updated and the new chapter posted. (Among other things, FFN no longer allows you to use things like single hyphens or asterisks to indicate scene breaks. To which I say verily, what the fuck.)

But as I was reformatting the BaBS chapters to retain their line breaks, I decided to go back and add line breaks back into some of my older works, like Antipodes and Scars. And looking back on those, Scars especially, was... humbling.

Because here's the thing. Scars was meant to be my farewell to the FF8 fandom. I'd been writing for FF8 since 1999 – it was my first fanfiction community, dating back to the days when the FFGurus Forums were still going strong, and my work there is honestly responsible for a huge amount of my writing skill. It was my alma mater, in a way. And Scars was, if not precisely a thesis, still a final exhibition. At the time I wrote it, revised it, and posted it, it represented the best of my writing ability.

That was back in 2005, and when I look at it now...

I won't say it's bad. It still has its charm, and I think it still gets its message across. But I look at it now, and I can see where it should be tightened, where the pathos should be toned back, where it should be punched up, where characterization needs to be tweaked and how the tension arc needs to be smoothed out, where the description falls down or fails to set the scene. There are layers upon layers of improvements. And it's wonderful, and a little terrifying, because when I wrote that, I did not know how it could be made better. And now I do.

And the stuff I'm writing now? Oftimes, I don't know how it can be made better. And sometimes I'm afraid that I'm not going to get any better, that because I don't see how I can improve, I'm not going to. And in a way, getting over that means having faith in the past; in that what was possible then is still possible now. The stuff I write that's the peak of my ability now may look like my first-draft stuff, years from now. And I can do this. I've done it before.
magibrain: A radiation symbol. It appears to be a little bit on fire. (Default)
Via [ profile] starletfallen, possibly the best Torchwood fic ever. No, not joking. It's echidnafic, guys; serious incorporation of crack elements.

[ profile] x_los, I think you'll like this. Despite your detesting everything about Torchwood. that's how awesome it is.


magibrain: A radiation symbol. It appears to be a little bit on fire. (Default)

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