Wednesday, 1 January 2020 08:00
lea_hazel: The Little Mermaid (Default)
Drop me a line about anything here.
lea_hazel: Don't make me look up from my book (Basic: Reading)
On most work days, I liven up my commute by listening to podcasts. They’re easy to listen to, because I can drift in and out of focus without too much trouble, and put together whatever I miss from context. Listening to audio fiction isn’t so easy. I need to focus on every word, or the thread of the plot is lost, and my enjoyment of the words themselves is lessened. I listen to short fiction on audio only rarely, and then only to very short things, twenty minutes or less. Still, I’ve found some remarkable stories online. These are three of them.

That hilariously short attention span aside, and ignoring for a second that sometimes depression prevents me from focusing on anything interesting, I like listening to short stories on audio on my phone. While waiting for the bus, on my commute, on lunch breaks, on the line at the supermarket… wherever I can squeeze in those twenty minutes of peace.

Read more... )

Crossposted to
lea_hazel: Angry General Elodie (Genre: Games)
After having been playing it pretty regularly for about a month and a half, I believe I might finally be ready to make my review of Kisses and Curses. There are 5-6 routes (depending on how you count) and I played two of them to the end, then quit halfway through another. Now I'm dipping my toes into a fourth with hopes of clarifying something about the reasons why I DNFed the last one. I've been trying to review this game for ages so getting this out of my system will be real nice.

In other game news, I made a thread for Wreath of Roses on the Lemma Soft forums, the mythological birthplace of so many OEL visual novels and dating sims. My concerns about text games and game writing and etc. are more or less validated, but it's okay.

(no subject)

Thursday, 19 January 2017 16:25
lea_hazel: The outlook is somewhat dismal (Feel: Crash and Burn)
Yesterday I had such a productive day, but today my head hurts and I don't want to do anything. D:
lea_hazel: Typewriter (Basic: Writing)
And not just because it's supposed to be the book I want to see in the world. And not just because I can't help but think that it's my responsibility to make that book happen, for other people.

The set-up goes something like this: Read more... )
lea_hazel: Angry General Elodie (Genre: Games)
The game's full title is Niche: a Genetics Survival Game, and thank Darwin fish for that, because "niche game" is the worst Google search term in history.

Anyhoo. Niche is an eco-bio-something sim that charges the player with raising a pack of vague mammalian critters, collecting food, breeding, fighting off predators, and exploring their surroundings. The game world's science is a biological grab-bag of sorts. Differently colored tiles represent different "biomes" with different physical characteristics. Each critter has its own genome, where some traits divide to dominant versus recessive, and others mix interestingly, like fur color. A "mutation menu" lets the player pick specific traits to introduce into their newly-bred nichelings, rolling the dice and letting the odds determine the outcome. "Immunity genes" exist to discourage consanguinity. Later in the game's life cycle, "alpha/beta" status for critters was also introduced.

Read more... )

Crossposted to

(no subject)

Sunday, 8 January 2017 22:45
lea_hazel: The Little Mermaid (Default)
Oh hi I am fairly tipsy and extremely emotional my father turned eighty we had a party and I almost cried? a few times? but he was so happy.

I need sleep.

...I feel old, a little.
lea_hazel: Kermit: OMG YAY *flail* (Feel: OMGYAY)
An annotated guide to my Purimgifts 2017 request:

Part 1 - Fandoms

Read more... )

Part 2 - Additional Tags

Read more... )

Part 3 - Rating

Read more... )

Part 4 - Archive Warnings

Read more... )

Part 5 - Additional Details

Read more... )

I'm always happy with what I get, but sometimes I respond to the fics late because of anxiety issues. If it's been a day or two and I haven't commented yet, that definitely doesn't mean I didn't read and love the story, just that I'm anxious that day.
lea_hazel: Typewriter (Basic: Writing)
I am very glad that I managed, somewhere along the way, to master the skill of not jumping down the throat of a new creative idea as soon as it occurs to me. Instead, I let it sit for a while and try to figure out if it's really as shiny and exciting as it first seemed, especially in relation to how much of an effort it's going to require.

So I sat on the portal fantasy idea for a while. I'm glad I did. It seemed at first to be a wonderfully flexible idea that would allow me to combine concept from secondary world fantasy with some of what you get when you write urban/contemporary/masquerade fantasy. With the benefit of a little breathing space, though, I'm not sure that I could maintain interest in it for long enough to make the project worthwhile.

Right now my writing goals plate is pretty full, and I have work and school on top of that, plus all the ordinary stuff of living. And I have a list of deadlines to which I can aspire, which will push me to create new original material. I'm on track. I just have to keep reminding myself of that.

Lumberjanes Vol. 1

Wednesday, 4 January 2017 15:00
lea_hazel: Wonder Woman (Genre: Comics)
My fall's reading has been not nearly so prolific as the summer or spring had been. Since Icon wrapped up in October, I still haven't finished the small pile of graphic novels sitting on my shelf, gazing at me, forlorn. NaNoWriMo happened and I was focused on trying to break barriers in my own writing and, frankly, November had been a rough month for everyone.

It's a good thing I started out with Lumberjanes, then. This comics series, bound up in four-issue trade paperbacks, hovers somewhere between young adult and middle grade. Though nominally a fantasy adventure book, it's a little more unrestrained in its fantastical exploration than I'm used to seeing in YA. The art style is vibrant and compelling, but the human figures are stylized enough that the age of the protagonists stays ambiguous. The summer camp environment and the bright and cheery atmosphere give it an overall middle grade vibe.

Read more... )

Lumberjanes is a delightfully chaotic adventure, and I recommend it heartily to anyone looking for something bright and beautiful to read.

Crossposted to
lea_hazel: Typewriter (Basic: Writing)
I mentioned I want to write a new universe. I think I know what kind of universe I want to create. I'd kind of rather not do it alone but, well.

What I'm thinking about right now is a portal fantasy world, except a couple of generations forward. A world for the descendants of Earth children who just... refused to return home.
lea_hazel: I am surrounded by tiny red hearts (Feel: Love)
Checking my blog, I realize it's not simple to immediately catalog how many blog posts I wrote in 2016. With a little more effort, I can say that 2016 brought twelve review posts, nine writing posts, four general meta posts, and four admin posts. More specifically, two "con report" posts, one each for Olamot and Icon, and two posts marking NaNoWriMo.

Cut for a whole lot of blather. )
lea_hazel: Pride flag (Politics: GLBTQ)
I promised an update after NaNoWriMo, didn't I? And now it's been nearly a month since I wrote my fifty thousand words, and I still haven't written anything. A lot of things got put on the back-burner for November, and so December has been pretty busy. I didn't find a lot of time to set aside for contemplating the nature of my chaotic little manuscript, and how to move forward with it. Although I'd been meaning to break my habit of adopting overly ambitious story ideas, and then getting stalled trying to solve them...

Well, that was the situation I found myself in, completely unintentionally. Read more... )


Saturday, 24 December 2016 18:56
lea_hazel: Typewriter (Basic: Writing)
I feel a little more on top of things now since I accomplished some important errands that had been haunting me. I've also started repopulating the blog, which has been mostly dormant since my queue ran out early in NaNoWriMo. And work is going well, too.

My apartment is quite cold so the weather's been getting me down, but from here on in it should be getting lighter every day, and hey, I got my raincoat back from mending just in time. Uni is also going all right, I manage not to panic if I just break things down into manageable pieces. Instead of expecting to accomplish everything in one intense cram session.

Social has been a little off. So often I'm too tired to leave the house when I get home from work, and even on the weekends my overwhelming urge is to huddle under the covers with a hot water bottle. Israeli fandom should organize a meetup, we haven't had one in like a century.

Merry Christmas to all my friends and followers who celebrate Christmas. And Happy Hannukah too, since tonight is first candle.

This has been a life update. I am living. That's the update. Is everyone else living, too?
lea_hazel: Don't make me look up from my book (Basic: Reading)
  • Supergirl - it's cute and charming despite the uncomplicated plotting and often clunky dialogue.

  • Elementary - its main flaw right now is that it interacts badly with my auditory processing, and I miss about 1/5 of the dialogue in each episode.

  • Crazy Ex-Girlfriend - there's a lot that's messed up about this show but it also offers things that no other show on tv does.

  • Jane the Virgin - someday its adorableness might fail, but there's always Petra.

  • The Librarians - all the wacky hijinks I need, plus Ezekiel Jones.

  • Timeless - I'm not 100% sure why I'm still following this.

Shows I'm no longer following:

  • Hos to Get Away with Murder - and I'm not even certain why, but maybe one season was all I could really stomach before things went too off the wall.

  • Once Upon a Time - I mean, really.
lea_hazel: Don't make me look up from my book (Basic: Reading)
NaNoWriMo is over and I need to kickstart my reading habits. I tried to read Ancillary Justice but I'm having trouble getting deep enough in to be swept away, I might put it off until I have some extra mental energies. I have a number of books saved to my Kobo account that I have not yet bought, and I have a stack of TPBs. And, of course, my over-full book shelves full of smart books that I am perpetually too tired to read.

One of the last books I finished was Shira Glassman's The Second Mango but the new releases (from which she actually gets royalties) aren't on Kobo and I'd probably had to get them through Amazon or something. There are four novels in all and one short story collection, I think. But I have a lot of other options.

1. N.K. Jemisin's The Fifth Season is A Smart Book and also has geological tectonic magic, which is fascinating and extra appealing to me. On the con side, the excerpt I read gives me the impression of dense prose and a difficult narrator voice.

2. T. Kingfisher's (Ursula Vernon) Bryony and Roses is also an award-winner and yet it is also a fairy-tale and has that UV-brand deadpan humor that I find so comfortable.

3. Mary Robinette Kowal's Shades of Milk and Honey is a magicky regency romance, and my familiarity with the author's style means it promises to be a non-offensive f/m pairing, possibly in the vein of Sorcerer to the Crown (which was anj instant favorite). Also likely to be light and comfortable.

4. The Golem and the Jinni is that Jewish fantasy novel I have ostensibly always wanted, and also fairly well-reviewed (although it doesn't have the kind of gushing following some others on my list do). A bit of an unknown quantity.

5. The Lies of Locke Lamora. People having been raving about this book for as long as I can remember. Am I in a lovable rogue mood? Who knows.

6. Michelle Sagara's Cast in Shadow which was recommended to me by someone and indeterminate time period in the past. Yay, memory! I downloaded the preview for this on a whim and it gives me a comfortable feeling of a heroine with trust issues.

7. Or I could just get the next in one of the series I'm reading. I have a bunch of those I haven't finished, and that might help me get into a good reading routine.

8. I also have the TPB of Monstress (from Marjorie Liu) sitting on my shelf. And one of the Marceline Adventure Time books, and some Star Wars stuff. They are good for reading in bits and pieces, generally, but less convenient to carry in my purse (I have a purse. I'm a person who carries a purse now.).

Decisions are unusually hard for me lately. Or, like, more than usually hard.
lea_hazel: The outlook is somewhat dismal (Feel: Crash and Burn)
This is a terrifying thing to admit, thirty thousand words into a story.

I had started with a couple of rough character sketches and some tentative worldbuilding, and decided I would figure out the plot as I went along. Meanwhile I was nurturing the secondary protagonist's identity crisis, which was supposed to be the secondary, supporting, plot thread. Guess what happened next.

Now I am more than halfway through a story that is not adventure, not intrigue, not mystery, and not even a proper romance. The closest thing to redeeming value in the plot as it stands, is that it could possibly be literary fiction -- if the characters weren't anthro bats.

Like, I'm not even talking "how do I market this". More like, "what the fuck did I just write".

So I stick to the short term, and realize that the next thing that needs to happen is a character mailing a letter to their mother.
lea_hazel: Typewriter (Basic: Writing)
In two weeks NaNo will be over and I will either have a complete first draft or else I'll have to re-evaluate how long the plot of this story wants to be. Assuming it's the former, I need some way to maintain momentum so that the draft doesn't get relegated to the back of the WIP folder. I want to make something out of this piece of shit, if at all possible.

December has 31 days in it.

Read more... )

Life Update

Friday, 11 November 2016 11:33
lea_hazel: A frowning white theater mask (Feel: Sad Face :()
I spent a lot of the past week or so falling apart. November began on a good note as the 1st and 2nd were writing days and the beginning of NaNo, which I was apprehensive about. It started well, though, and I'm broadly pleased with my writing and enjoying the characters, and I think I will want to stick it out to the end which is a good thing (even if I don't know what that end will be).

Read more... )
lea_hazel: The outlook is somewhat dismal (Feel: Crash and Burn)
I had intended, at one point, to keep track of how many hits I was getting on various of my Twine games in a big spreadsheet. Nothing remotely scientific, just to give myself an idea of what draws enduring interest. I was fairly diligent for a while and then I tapered off sometime in late summer when things started to slip out of hand.

Anyway, between 10/9 and 6/11 of this year, I got a total of 245 hits on my games. Most of those weren't me. Although a few of them were. I feel pretty good about this!

In other news, I was just in the process of writing out a totally extraneous character who had served her purpose in my NaNovel... and then her step-mother showed up out of nowhere and she was utterly delightful. Now I have to get rid of her, too, and start focusing the story on the plot. Assuming I know what the plot is. I also would really like to hit 10K at some point, but I recognize that this may take a while. given how far behind schedule I am.


lea_hazel: The Little Mermaid (Default)

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