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The Toybox

people for the conservation of limited amounts of indignation

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Yep, you *know* you're still climbing the Mountains of Fannish Obsession when you note that your playlist is getting an awful lot of QaF music. Oh, no, not something as innocuous as the *soundtrack*.

Nooo, you're playlist is the songs from QaF *VIDS*. And vids in general that you've loved. And the sad thing is, I vid in my head sometimes. Not that I'm any good at it--me and the visual medium don't get along at all.

Note to silviakundera: Where did you get that version of Keep Me? I have a more--energetic version, but I like your quieter one better.

Current Playlist:

66, Battleflag, Black Balloon, Goodbye to You (associate with Buffy goodness), Good Enough, Proud, Kiss the Rain, Keep Me, Silver Blue, Summer Rain, Boys of Summer, Things Will Never Be the Same, The Space Between, (Love Me) When I'm Gone.

Most of these I've written to.

Music, the right kind, unlocks something, like this filter between my head and my fingers goes offline briefly. I don't think I write *better* because of it, but I do write a lot *faster*. The right words take a shorter period of time to find. *grins* Think search engine on nitrus.

So far, Keep Me, if I can find the Silvia Kundera version, could walk me through the rest of the weird, weird, *weird* Michel/Brian/Justin thing going on in my LJ. Because dissecting actually works sometimes.

The WiP Collection

How's It Gonna Be (QaF) - I just revel in this. I can honestly say I've never just had this much *fun* making a character so miserable. It could easily be subtitled Justin's Very Bad, No Good, Terribly Painful, Icky, Angsty Week (with comics). Because he's fun. He's *so* much fun and I love him *so* much. I do. I love him *so so so* much.

Look and See (QaF) - this wouldn't have happened if dammitcarl hadn't given me her opinion on Justin's character. It's way different from mine, but I liked hers, too. Then again, I have weakness for smart, manipulative, ruthless brats when they do it with such style. *happy sigh* Long live Ruthless!Justin.

Foray (QaF) -- cowrite with velena who enables and also, makes me drool. Whoa *doggies*. Daphne Love! We need more Daphne Love! We need *icons* too. Someone, in the name of God, tell me where there are screencaps, please.

This, Too (SV) -- cowrite with rageprufrock, and we're *scared* of this story, okay? Scared. And it's long. And it scares us. A lot.

The rest I'm pretending don't exist. Because I am God of the WiP folder and when I close my eyes, I can't see it. So there.

Fannish Meanderings

For anyone vaguely interested, Reboot is reviewing How It's Gonna Be here and here. It's interesting reading--it's rare I get to see where other people are going in a fic I'm writing, and apparently, I *am* doing it more right than I thought. Which is Of the Good.

Smart People

destina talks critique here. Lots of comments on the subject everywhere. An older entry, August-y, but imminently re-readable. And now would be a *good* time to do so.


Something to Rememeber by josselin, Jesus Christ, she made me NOT want B/J. Like, ever, in this universe. Justin deserved better, and hell, so did Brian. *sniffles* Read it. It hurts *so* much.]

Fairy Tales and Other Acts of Subversion

One of my favorite reads of all time is an anthology called Black Thorn, White Rose, retellings of fairy tales in a myriad of quite twisty ways. Hindsight lets me note that, yes, this is fanfic, just fanfic of really, really old stories, so really, I'm so seeing a pattern in what attracts me.

The ones I seem to like best are the ones that kept the--hmm. I don't want to say spirit, because no one sane reads "Sweet Bruising Skin" and thinks, huh, that is *so* like The Princess and the Pea. But recognizable without being just boring.

The creepiness factor works for me, though.

Though I would be ecstatic if someone, and someone out there *has* to have read this book, could tell me what the *fuck* is up in "The Frog Prince or Iron Henry"?

There are about three or four that I genuinely don't like--"Ashputtle" gets the crown. It's not that the symbolism doesn't appeal to me, because it does--I just don't see it as a Cinderella story, no matter how much stretching of the original text(s) is done. Stripping out the names, it's creepy original kind-of horror fic. I'm not reading for original fic. I'm reading for variations on a theme.

Whereas "Words Like Pale Stones" (and yep, lifted *that* title right off there, the sheer beauty of the concept appealing to me in all that complexity that truth can be) is a vivid Rumpelstilskin.

I liked this bit.


"Art starts out simple. Pale. True to what is real. Like stone statues of the human body, or verse chanted by firelight. Pale, pale stone. Pale as stone. Simple words, that name what is true. Designs in natural wool, the color of rams' horns. Then, as time goes on, the design becomes more elaborate. The colors brighter. The story twisted to fit rhyme, or symbol, or somebody else's power. Finally, the designs are so elaborate, so twisted with motion, and the colors so feverish--look at me Ludie-- that the original, the real as it exists in nature, looks puny and withered. The original has lost all power to move us, replaced by a hectic simulacrum that bears only a tainted relation to what is real. The corruption is complete."


Hmm. Let me think--"Sweet Bruising Skin" is just plain creepy, and there's enough original in it so it works. Also helps that unlike "Ashputtle", it's set in a compatiable time period. And it has that variable pov bit--in which the story is told by someone else, in this case, the prince's mother.

This bit always makes me smile. The Queen mother's family was something else.


Some years previously, a cousin of mine, having been sold into a marriage alliance with Brude, which she bitterly resented, had, through deft application of toxins, reduced her husband's intelligence to something less than that enjoyed by a vegetable, and had also rendered all children of the family under the age of ten incurably insane, before escaping the Brudish demesne with her maid.


"The Goose Girl" hurts, with an acid sort of sweetness of remembered impossible love, except...

I suppose it comes back to in fiction, love is used to cover an awful lot of ground. And oddly, I could almost think Justin's Romance Debates of Season Two and Three might have solidified a lot of my problems.

I like the story, but the narrator, the prince, is fucking spineless. Man of his time, *whatever*, he watched while the woman he loved and her unborn child, *his* unborn child, were killed and then married the princess, because that was *expected*. And for God's sake, honey, you knew she liked girls more than boys when you met her, so *really*, what the *hell*?

*rolls eyes*

Just read it. You'll see what I mean.

Okay, am buckling down to write some Justin-inflicting-deep-psychological-agony-on-Michael fic. Because honestly, it's just too much fun for mere words to describe. *g*

*whistles and wanders off*

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*curious* Was it any good? I'm wary of professional fanfic. Tie in novels. *Whatever*. Do tell.

I've read the book, but for the life of me I don't remember that story.

It's the weirdest one of them, and that's saying something. I'm almost sure this is a Huge Symbolic Metaphor Thing, but for the life of me, I can't work out the pattern or the reasoning. If you ever get a chance to read it again, feel free to do the essay. I'll expect quotes and lots of high literaryish phrases thrown around. And Freud. Because literary critique isn't critique unless someone is repressing their penis.


*settles back to wait*

I'd much rather have a hot guy repressing another one's penis. Queer Lit! There are classes! Bless liberalism, dammit.

Oh my god, you're right! We need Daphne icons! Where are all the Daphne icons?!

Is there a B/J vid to 'The Space Between?' I haven't seen it. I love listening to vid playlists too. Or else I'll be listening to a CD, and the vids will just start forming in my head. Have you listened to U2's 'Achtung Baby?' That *is* Brian and Justin.


*sighs* Nowhere, I tell you. *sniffles*

Is there a B/J vid to 'The Space Between?' I haven't seen it. I love listening to vid playlists too. Or else I'll be listening to a CD, and the vids will just start forming in my head. Have you listened to U2's 'Achtung Baby?' That *is* Brian and Justin.

No to the first part, though that would be *interesting* to see. And somewhere I do have Achtung Baby. Must listen with that in mind.

Whee! Thanks! *hugshugshugs*

no prob *G* im happy when i see something nice with it lol

How's It Gonna Be (QaF) - I just revel in this.

butbutbut why so long since the last part? you may know what the heck james did to freak brian out, but i'm still clueless here. so pleaseplease update this story soon!

I swear, it's being written. Promise.

Been a long, long while since I read the book, but I remember that "The Frog Prince or Iron Henry" got me where I lived. One of the earliest versions of "The Frog Prince" I learned was the Iron Henry variation, where faithful Henry had a band of iron placed around his heart to keep it from breaking when his prince was cursed. Now you tell me, how happy does that truly make an ending where the iron band bursts because a spoilt princess has restored his prince by skinning the frog? That's what I've always liked best about faerie tales, the teeth.

I think the version in Black Thorn, White Rose was meant to illustrate how much more damage the curse did to the prince than simply changing his form. I think it was also meant to show how faithful Henry remained to the broken pieces of the man he loved, how the endless retelling of the tale had become the new iron band that both enslaved him and kept him from shattering altogether. And hell, I hadn't really run across slash as a concept when I read it, but as I think about it now, I'd say it's a lovely slashy fucked-up relationship.

Have you read any of the other anthologies in the series? I adore them beyond the telling of it.

Let me know when you'll be on AIM, and I'll meet you and transfer the song. :)

season 3 screencaps


also, where can I find more of your writing? I'm still waiting for more of How it's gonna be, and now Foray just sort of left me hanging on a cliff with my stomach churning... come on! you're evil.

"Heatseeking Pleasure Machine" by Paul Mac. It only appeared once on the series, but this is the musical incarnation of clubbing!Brian. Plus, Tex Perkins singing the lyrics.... mmmm....

Mind you, the one QaFUS vid I'd definitely watch if it was done, would be Jesus!Brian for Depeche Mode's "Personal Jesus". But that's just my warped sense of humour.

Hmmmm... As for Ashputtle, I thought that was an original version of Cinderella.

Mum was dumped in the deep end of teaching drama to year 8's, and went through the stuff that last years teacher had taught them. One assessment was the small group performance of fairytales, with fairytale scripts. One of these fairytales was Ashputtle. Creeped the pair of us out. Self-mutilation to fit your feet into shoes? Wearing them until the blood pools out? Who the hell would get 14 year olds to play that out?!

Creepy, creepy tale, but it was set in a Cinderella-ish time setting. When was yours set?

Mind you, favourite bit of knowledge that I have about Cinderella is that she didn't leave the Prince a glass shoe. That came about between translations (German to French, I think). The original item had been a "fur slipper", which was a not so subtle sexual reference. It amuses me to think of good old Cindy as a slut.

But, still, I enjoy those retelling's of old fairytales. As a kid, my fave was the Roald Dahl retellings, "Horrid Rhymes?" (Something like that, can't quite remember it.) Basically, fairytales told in rhyme and made highly amusing for kiddies.

Favourite twist was that Little Red Riding Hood ends up killing off the Big Bad Wolf by herself, because she's not an idiot. Then, later in the book, the Three Little Pigs call on her to save them. That story basically ends with Little Red Riding Hood walking away with a new wolf-skin coat, and matching pigskin luggage.

Hmmm... there's also another book... damn, can't remember it. But, took the idea of fairytales, and set it up as a Matrix like world. The narrative imperitive happens, the story gets told, but the story reality is actually a VR world. Featured three kids getting trapped inside it, and dealing with it. Very clever and fun for a young adults book. If I could think of the title, I'd quote it.

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