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The Toybox

people for the conservation of limited amounts of indignation


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on recs and immunizations for non-invulnerable boys
children of dune - leto 1
seperis
Lalala, I'm procrastinating. And I found it instantly funny that Hope released a story called that.

But first, rhiannonhero's Screen Name Meme.

seperis:

See, I never really meant to USE it for anything. When I started writing, it never occurred to me I'd need a webpage, as this was A.) a Hobby, and B.) I knew nothing about HTML. But lo, on my thirdish story (this was three years ago, so my recollection of events is hazy), I was working on my first fannish novel (though I didn't know it) and someone asked where I was archived.

Well, good question, as my list didn't have an archive and I knew even less about archives than I did about HTML.

So I went to geocities, because they appeared first. Amazingly, jenn wasn't avaiable. Imagine that. Nor jennifer or any other variation I could think of at the time. Who WOULD have guessed?

Now, to jump back about two years because, well, I want to, I started writing my first hard sci-fi novel (later cannibalized somewhat for the making of "In the Space of Seven Days", the Voyager novel mentioned above) and a fantasy novel. These had two character names I'd corrupted from professional novels--Sahine and Seperis. The second novel really has nothign to do with the story, except luck of the draw is that seperis was faster to type. Try it. Really. All those e's made life easier. It's basically the same reason I shortened to jenn awhile back. Privacy, bah. I just got oh so tired of typing my full name on every damn email and story.

For those who know their Melanie Rawn, Seperis is a corruption of Cipris, one of Ianthe's younger sisters who died before reproducing, killed by Pandsala. I can even remember the description of her. Sharp and bright as a new morning.

Cipris did not work in geocities at the time, so boom, Seperis won.

Yep. I'm a nerd. I just loved how the name looked on paper.

It's also the last name of a computer programmer on the net, but let's leave that part out since it's only relevant as an amusing google moment.

Anyway.

So seperis won for starting my geocities site. And since I, as everyone knows, forget passwords, birthdays, and pretty much everything that isn't nailed down on some part of my body, I kept it to keep consistency throughout my fanfic life. So seperis was translated to wr.com, diaryland, LJ, and then to illuminatedtext. I still like it. And no one else except the aforementioned programmer uses it, and it's actually his NAME, so hey. Yippee.

Right, boring as hell. I'll try to make up a more interesting story next time I'm asked. Involving rituals in subSaharic Africa and chanting down the Rhine. Until then.

Recs.

A Luthor Christmas by MitchPell. Okay, there are some problems. For the English purists among us, the accept/except issue will eventually make you bite your nails. a *LOT*. Just take deep breaths. A few other things I've heard mentioned as pet peeves come up, including dialogue grammar problems, but be calm through it. This is one of those times I think the author just needed a very strict grammar beta. The story itself is solid with an interesting Lex characterization following him from age six to adulthood. I liked the way the author set up the family, and it was, basically, a good story to read. I enjoyed it immsensely. And there is schmoop, for the schmoopy.

A Kiss Under the Mistletoe Just Happens by Jessica. Another fabulous installment in Jessica's Nickyverse, sweet and funny and adorable and awwww ness all over the place.

Backfired by Bren Antrim. I love how she seems to read my midn and post right when I start cravingher fic. Futurefic, Redfic, and funny and hot. Read and enjoy.

Procrastination by Hope. Mmm. Hot smutty goodness with a work-study Clark and Lex in bed. Delicious.

I took a few days and decided to read Rhiannonhero's entire Orbiting series from top to bottom in order. Which I did. I'm still torn.

Cut because I confuse myself sometimes and for spoilers.


I didn't actually mean to re-read the series except Rhiannon's later work seriously caught my attention, first with Sepia, then with Gold. Both stories were EXTREMELY different from the author's usual style, one, and two, both were lovely bits of fic in their own right.

Okay, I told self. Go back and read and see what problems you had with the series, or if you were just PMSing or something.

So hmm.

I like it. I've re-read Amplified Heart several times. It's an enjoyable series, though the Lex characterization still throws me--well, LOTS of Lex characterizations throw me. Rhiannon never tempted me to go for the Spork of Eye-Destruction, so that's a plus. I have some peeves with him. I honestly can't see him being quite this--*thinks*--not weak so much as fragile and emotional, but futurefic character interpretations are tricky, tricky things, and it is reasonable canonical accuracy, especially if read only with first season in mind. *shrug* And some of the sex was--well, kind of, to me, too methodical, but I've read other reviews that have enjoyed that unconditionally, so I'm going with a jenn-only sort of thing on this one.

The weakest of the series is Wal-Mart, though it's funny, and I think the strongest could be Amplified Heart so far. Tomorrowland had some great moments, but Lex crying is not something I see very often, even under extreme provocation. Very much a me-thing.

YMMV. It's a nice long series with a pretty solid plotline and some really interesting character development. I don't always agree with everything she extrapolates, but canonically, it's pretty sound. So read it yourself and decide. Definitely hit Sepia while wandering through.



And lo, I can be critical. Just not really.

See, the problem I have with when I do critical commentary is I'm appealed to by mood as much as by anything else. *shrug* So some things that won't appeal to other people appeal to me, and some things other people love make me shrug. So this is a completely subjective thing going on. For analytical, really, I'm not going to be doing it.

Mercy by Koi and Past Grief by Te are still my number one, love them forever stories of all time in this fandom, any mood. So I CAN be consistent!

Okay. Now for the third thing.

You know that thing I do where I skid to a halt and panic when things get long or I'm hitting an ending? Well, I'm not hitting an ending, but I skidded when I made the mistake of checking my word count for Somewhere I Have Never Travelled. Stupid word count. Anyway, I'm quietly panicking about the next section, because I was PLAYING and now this is suddenly--er, too long to play. It's now A Story. Which I must take Seriously. And think Serious Character Development Thoughts.

And how's THIS for a thought? Clark's HUMAN now! With a human immune system! He's never been immunized! He could get polio! Rubella! Whooping Cough! (for some reason, I wrote coffee there for cough and had to take a break to laugh myself hoarse. Better now.)

These are the sorts of things that come up every time I get the boys half-naked. Or I go half to sleep. This could explain my moodiness.

No, I don't need affirmation or anything, really, just amused at my own sheer anality. All my thanks for the comments and as soon as I stop staring at the end of this section and brooding over whether or not it forwards the plot (when did this get a plot?) I'll post it tonight.

*hugs to everyone* This is so cool.

*making more coffee*


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Hi! *g* I enjoyed reading your commentary on Orbiting. I find it pretty interesting and agree with many of your points.

First point of agreement, Walmart. This was actually the first story written in the series and only the second story I had written since highschool. *shrug* So I feel like I'm doing okay in the "growth" department. I had considered taking the story off the site, but a friend of mine talked me out of it.

Second point of agreement, Lex crying int Tomorrowland, if I wrote that story now (keeping in mind that it was only my 3rd story that I had written since highschool...I'm 28 now, so that's 10 years) I would do so very many things differently, that being one of them. In fact, in my little story meme I did awhile back, I said that I thought Tomorrowland is the most over-rated of my stories.

Now, re: the Lex characterization. Honestly, hmmm, I have to say that I agree that it may jive more with Season 1 Lex, which may be part of why my brain has stalled on the final two parts of thes series. Season 2 Lex doesn't seem as apt to play along with me. At the same time, I generally like my Lex characterization (heheh) and think it fits. *shrug* That is probably a YMMV thing since there are many times when, for example, your Lex throws me a bit! *g* I think I have determined that everyone's characterization is different to some extent and it all goes to what you can accept in the end. Sometimes what I can accept isn't what someone else can accept.

Re: the sex. No idea on that one, hon. Except, maybe depending on the story. I think the best sex happened in Constellations and Amplified Heart. I think Particle By Particle's first sex scene was good but that the others sucked. But that is just my opinion on it. Other people feel differently. *sigh* I don't know...too hard to say.

Re: Amplified Heart being the best in the series...I don't know. I'm partial to Particle By Particle despite what I said about the sex above. Again, the preference for story in the series is totally a YMMV thing. I get different emails saying that a different one is someone's fave all the time. The only consistency? Walmart is never anyone's favorite! LOL!

Sepia is my personal favorite story that I've written, period. So, it pleases me that you enjoyed it as well. It pleases me when anyone enjoys anything I've written. It is still quite the novelty. *g* I hope it never wears off.

BTW, I really enjoyed A Luthor Christmas by mitchpell, as well. I loved that the author presented Lex from a family perspective. I haven't done rec's on LJ in awhile, but I had intended to post about that one.

Hmm, wonder if I will. Procrastination, la di da.

Re: Human!Clark. Deep breaths. *hugs*

Later gator! *g*

Maybe you should just treat writing like an addiction. Don't think about the length of the story, just take it one chapter at a time. And keep having fun.

'Cause when it's fun for you, it's fun for all of us, seperis baby.

So...let me get this straight...you're saying there's not a new installment for us today?

:cries piteously!

(No pressure here, nonononono...)

Stupid word count. Anyway, I'm quietly panicking about the next section, because I was PLAYING and now this is suddenly--er, too long to play. It's now A Story. Which I must take Seriously. And think Serious Character Development Thoughts.

Don't you hate it when that happens? ::snerk::

BTW, I'm lovin' Human!Clark. He's quite nice. And Lex... Ah, Lex... ::big grin::

Lois is pretty kewl too. I'm still trying to make sense of where she and Clark are in terms of their relationship, but I may've been too seduced by the joy (Human!Clark ::sigh::) to have gotten it.

I look forward to more. ::grins::

Recs are *always* subjective, since there are very few things that reccers use to make judgments that remain the same across the board.

That's why so many people have introductions on their rec pages saying what readers will find, and what makes a good story to the reccer in question.

And that's why some of my recs are actually closer kin to generalized fic rants (most recently, my rec for "The Self Same Lore") than to actual *recommendations*.

Everyone has a favorite rec page, or several favorites. People choose those favorites not because the reccer is some All-Knowing God/dess of Critique, but because the reccer tends to make the same kinds of judgment calls as they do.

So, you know, my favorite rec page? My own. *g* Other favorites are those pages where, even if I don't always (or even often -- Anna's recs leave me cold *quite* often) agree with the chosen stories, I can usually tell what made the reccer *choose* that story. Which is why I'll keep going back to Anna's page, even though I find her taste puzzling -- she *always* tells you why she likes a story, and enough about what she *doesn't* like to make it easy for me to decide whether or not I want to try a given story out.

All of that is just to say: Jenn. Relax. Critique. This is a *great* start. Now keep going -- I want to know what's going on in your *head* when you rec some of these stories. Including my own. *g*

I agree that a rec is subjective, all likes and dislikes are, but critique seems a bit different from a rec. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but I think true critique requires the critiquer to justify her opinions with specifics. I firmly believe that everyone is entitled to their own opinion on a story and is allowed to state that opinion on an LJ or any other public forum even if it is to say, "I don't like it, I can't put my finger on why...", but I'm not certain that type of statement qualifies as a critique. That seems to me to be something more of an emotional reaction, which is fine and has its place, but which will only be helpful to readers with similar emotional reactions, whereas critique, through its specificity, serves the purpose of allowing other readers to decide if they would share the critiquer's preferences.

I agree that a rec is subjective, all likes and dislikes are, but critique seems a bit different from a rec.

Agreed. Basically, I'm asking Jenn to write more reviews -- which is what I'd call her bit about the Orbiting series. In my simplistic view, a review is a rec with a healthy dose of critique. Or an anti-rec with same, but hey, most of us don't have *anti*-rec pages.

I firmly believe that everyone is entitled to their own opinion on a story and is allowed to state that opinion on an LJ or any other public forum even if it is to say, "I don't like it, I can't put my finger on why...", but I'm not certain that type of statement qualifies as a critique. That seems to me to be something more of an emotional reaction, which is fine and has its place, but which will only be helpful to readers with similar emotional reactions, whereas critique, through its specificity, serves the purpose of allowing other readers to decide if they would share the critiquer's preferences.

And I still agree, so I'm wondering what the issue is. Jenn gave specifics re: Orbiting, even if she didn't state them as... firmly as I'm wont to do. So...?

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