edenfalling: stylized black-and-white line art of a sunset over the ocean (Default)
[personal profile] edenfalling
December 21: mapping worlds and fandoms, cont'd (for [livejournal.com profile] joyeuce01) [Tumblr crosspost]

More maps, yay!

So okay, Firsthome. Firsthome is another world I dreamed up around age thirteen, but in this case my initial terrible notes (which included, IIRC, a legendary pirate and a mermaid??? I dunno, it was forever ago and the notes in question were, at best, one sentence summaries of concepts that need at least a thousand words to make any sense) were extremely minimal and I didn't get around to making maps until much later.

(Except for Yanomy, but Yanomy is a weird case I will explain in a bit.)

I first 'mapped' Firsthome verbally, and since then have been engaged in an off-and-on struggle to make those verbal descriptions of geography and climate into functional images. Like, there are seven continents in this world. Three in the northern hemisphere (Arina, Yanomy, and Tirith Ansam), three in the southern hemisphere (Nivenos, Kerabada, and Chida), and one that pretty much straddles the equator (Ohiyesa). Some of these names are, um, approximations in Common (aka the language of the Estarin Empire, which is still the common speech of Estaria, a big region of Arina) for names in the language of whatever people the Estarins happened to conquer first on a given continent. So Yanomy comes from the Sirinese (or Umestai) Yan hu'Komi, Chida is short for Chidantl, and Kerabada is an expanded version of Khrabda.

I have little verbal geographic sketches of the entirety of Arina, Yanomy, and Kerabada. I have about 80% of Nivenos verbally mapped, and maybe 20% of Tirith Ansam. Ohiyesa and Chida are very vague -- though I've actually written one ficlet each set on those continents. (Seduction is set in the city-state of Vinaeo, which is on the northern coast of Ohiyesa, and Clockwork is set in Besmodu, an as-yet-unmapped region of Chida.)

At one point I started a project to map the whole world by hemispheres, but I only finished the east; west, south, and north are all sadly blank. And the map itself is pretty sketchy and subject to future revision, particularly Chida and Ohiyesa. But here it is. (The scribbly bits are mountain ranges.)

there are a bunch of large images from this point onward )

And that's all I have to say about Firsthome today, since the topic is maps rather than history or linguistics or children's games or religion or epic poetry traditions or any of the other things I have created and written down over the past twenty years. :-)


December Talking Meme: All Days

#20 [a poem]

Dec. 20th, 2014 11:02 pm
kaberett: a watercolour of a pale gold/salmon honeysuckle blossom against a background of green leaves (honeysuckle)
[personal profile] kaberett
Alright, let's make-believe that I'm a tree.
So dream: what storms have broken me?
What fruits adorn? What loving scars
graffitied in my skin, how warped
or changed with time? Do I give shade and,
later, warmth? And most of all:
please say I'm safe. Please dream me sound.

#19 Songs of the year

Dec. 20th, 2014 10:56 pm
kaberett: curled decorative end of curtain rail casts a heart-shaped shadow on a wall (heartfruit)
[personal profile] kaberett
Oh goodness. Over the past few weeks I have (as has been obvious) been on a Vienna Teng kick: Stray Italian Greyhound, Hymn of Acxiom, The Last Snowfall (this is not the last snowfall ... but if I were that kind of grateful, what would I try to say?), Never Look Away (let me uncover the silver in your dark hair/the weight of your bones). Finding hope & wonder & looking forward.

Then Stars: No One Is Lost (put your hands up if you ever feel afraid!) and How Much More (I told you I was brave but I lied).

Before that: Seanan McGuire, Writing Again and Dear Thomas and Sycamore Tree and Cartography; and the Indigo Girls, Watershed and Least Complicated and Hope Alone; P!nk, Who Knew; CN Lester's new album, Sparks and Your Hands; a stack of break-up songs, as we go backwards in time.

Before that it starts to feel hazier and less immediate. But this, this is the music I have listened to most over the last little bit, this and the selkie song (Still Catch The Tide). Lots of things about, well, about confusion and about bravery and about finding beauty and about looking forward. Which, well. Yes.
edenfalling: stylized black-and-white line art of a sunset over the ocean (Default)
[personal profile] edenfalling
December 20: favorite holiday traditions (for [personal profile] musesfool) [Tumblr crosspost]

My family doesn't have very many holiday traditions, so I guess I'll just list what I remember.

The only holidays that qualify are Thanksgiving and Christmas. Well, and maybe birthdays? Vicky and I both quit having parties around thirteen or fourteen years old, and since then Mom and Dad take us out for a nice dinner instead. It used to be all four of us, but since Vicky lives in DC and I live in Ithaca, that's not practical these days. And if either of us happens to be visiting our parents near one of their birthdays, we join the dinner party at whatever restaurant the birthday-haver picks.

They also go out for a nice dinner on their wedding anniversary, which I suppose counts as a tradition after forty years. :-)

Thanksgiving is always the four of us, occasionally with guests. If there are guests, I get drafted to say grace before the meal. I'm not entirely sure why that became my responsibility, but I don't mind it. For the past decade or so, we've tended to do a blind wine tasting. That started because I live in a wine-producing region, which has lots of little touristy vineyards. We pick two or three Rieslings over the year and do the tasting on Thanksgiving afternoon, then drink the rest of the wine with Thanksgiving dinner. Mom has also decided that touring vineyards is a good way to occupy the Wednesday before Thanksgiving; this is easier if we're doing the holiday at my apartment, but New Jersey has some actual wineries these days so it works there too.

For Christmas, Mom still tends to hang stockings for me and Vicky on her mantel, though we have told her several times that we are grown women and it feels silly. I think she's indulging in nostalgia. We open presents between 9am and noon on Christmas day; the time depends on whether we eat breakfast first. Sometimes we've done the open-one-gift on Christmas Eve thing, but not consistently. Unlike Thanksgiving, Christmas dinner doesn't have a set menu, though we've gravitated toward bacon-wrapped steak for the main dish.

When Vicky and I were kids, Christmas was the go-visit-relatives holiday. We often ended up having three or four Christmasses, spread over the course of a week: with Grandmother Ruth in the Twin Cities, with Grandpa and Ardis a few miles away in a different suburb of St. Paul, with Granddad and Grandma Doris in Iowa, and on our own back home in New Jersey. All my grandparents are dead now, but this year we're doing Christmas in DC so I suppose the family roadtrip is making a resurgence as a tradition -- though at least this version is saner than piling four people plus dog into a minivan and driving twenty-odd hours nonstop from New Jersey to western Iowa, which we did a few times after both Vicky and I had our driver's licenses. *wry*


December Talking Meme: All Days
kaberett: a patch of sunlight on the carpet, shaped like a slightly wonky heart (light hearted)
[personal profile] kaberett
I have decided that my least favourite season is probably summer, though it was quite hard to work out: because binding becomes vastly more uncomfortable and because the UK is so staggeringly ill-equipped to handle hot weather, and it's only for a day or two at a time so you never really have time to acclimatise.(Summer in SoCal was fine! I got used to it and adjusted habits to cope! This is never possible in the UK.) It is sticky and I have to pay more attention to hydrating enough and temperature regulation is harder. (I mean, winter has its downsides - my hands get proper unhappy with wheelchairing etc - but on the whole they bother me less.)

THINGS I LIKE: the moments when I do get to just sit and absorb sunlight and heat and don't have to think. The plants all being sturdily enthusiastic and making there be flowers and fruit and, eventually, baby plants. Fresh raspberries and strawberries. The sea being warm enough to stick toes into. The length of the days. Long evenings. Open-air concerts and plays. Properly fresh vegetables. All the colours the sea goes. :-)
kaberett: Overlaid Mars & Venus symbols, with Swiss Army knife tools at other positions around the central circle. (Default)
[personal profile] kaberett
Perhaps the big thing for me is that I conceptualise myself as relying not so much on scripts as on roles. Figuring out new roles to play is generally the hardest; it's easy enough at this point for me to Nice White Posh (Disabled) Lady at shops and customer service if it'll get me the outcome I want (as discussed); it is easy for me to slip very quietly into the body language that cues other people to treat me as an authority figure (which I picked up via spending time around animals); it is easy for me to step through my specific scripts for teaching. ("Okay, please tell me if I'm going either too fast or too slow - and what's your background in X/what do you know about Y/are you comfortable with the concept of Z?")

New situations are harder: when I switch to a new role (being someone's PhD student! Meeting someone's parents for the first time when it is totally unclear whether they are thinking of me as a friend or a partner!) I have to feel out the shapes that are expected of me by trial-and-error, which is stressful. Mostly I handle it by asking lots and lots of questions about what I should be doing, but that is sometimes intrusive, so I flap around feeling sadly and anxiously as though I'm a failure. It is easier for me to act within paradigms I understand, and so on.

-- actually, that's a lie, I totally do use scripts some of the time. With doctors it's more obvious if I'm helping someone else prep for an appointment, but - it's a case of running through the plausible discussion tree (time-limited conversation with constraints on topic matter) and work out what we'll want to respond under various circumstances. But - working out scripts for myself, as opposed to other people? Not so great. Mostly for that I use Captain Awkward.

Which is the how, to some extent. As for the when -- mmm. Mostly I care less about what the situation "looks" like and more about what it feels like to me; if I'm getting stressed and clumsy and feeling unsafe in terms of just working in good faith towards a mutually-agreeable arrangement (which! happens a lot! I hate capitalism!) then I will slip into a-script-(or-role)-I-prepared-earlier. It's not really about the other party, to any extent.

Hmm. Perhaps not terribly clear. Apologies.


Dec. 20th, 2014 04:44 pm
kaberett: a watercolour painting of an oak leaf floating on calm water (leaf-on-water)
[personal profile] kaberett
I am curled up on a sofa in a bay window overlooking the Ouse, on which lights are reflecting, listening to P remind himself how pianos work. His parents are through in the kitchen putting together dinner (I helped with food last night). We bimbled briefly through town this morning - along a stretch of the wall around the minster, via a cafe that served us pistachio-rose-cardamom cake - and I spent much of the afternoon napping while he caught up on marking at his desk. Over breakfast I managed to actually help with a couple of Araucaria clues - P's mother had been saving the crossword for the next time he was around. This is proper lovely.
edenfalling: colored line-art drawing of a three-scoop ice cream sundae in a silver dish (ice cream sundae)
[personal profile] edenfalling
Ha, victory! I knew once I actually sat down to write the damn fic, it would come fairly quickly, and I was right -- I wrote the whole thing in under twelve hours. The POV ended up switched to the other main character, and the plot arc took some unexpected minor swerves, but this is about 85% the story I intended to write, and that's a better outline-to-story accuracy rate than I usually get.

I need to get it edited, of course, but the main point is that there is something to edit.

(On that note, does anyone want to beta a short fic about what happened to a couple people after the end of their canon story? The book in question is obscure, but I can provide a canon synopsis and what I mostly need to know is if I adequately signaled a few things within my fic, and that requires no canon knowledge whatsoever.)
edenfalling: stylized black-and-white line art of a sunset over the ocean (Default)
[personal profile] edenfalling
December 19: mapping worlds and fandoms, cont'd (for [livejournal.com profile] joyeuce01) [Tumblr crosspost]

I talked about mapping fandoms (or, more accurately, NOT mapping them) yesterday. Today I am going to talk about mapping original secondary worlds.

The short answer is, I do this a lot. Not always! I have written stories which, as with my fanfiction, have only verbal geographies. I have a bunch of projects I started to map but never got further than a preliminary sketch. And I have a bunch of maps that don't have proper stories attached to them. (Yet, anyway.) But I love maps, so I am going to show you every map I currently have at hand, and explain them at such length you will probably give up and click away from this post in despair before I am halfway through.

*ominous smile*

Let's start with Kerr!

cut for images and length )

(I think I am just going to continue this topic for any day I don't have an assigned topic. Like I said, I have a lot of maps and a lot of words to say about them!)


December Talking Meme: All Days


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