bookgazing: (Default)
[personal profile] bookgazing
White, yellow and red book cover of Kameron Hurley's The Geek Feminist Revolution featuring an illustration of a llama


It's the start of July. I am trying to review Kameron Hurley's essay collection, The Geek Feminist Revolution. In my wisdom, I have decided an analysis of her essay, "I'll Make The Pancakes: On Opting In And Out of the Writing Game", would make a great entry point for my review. I reread it to remind myself of the piece's fundamental points:

The more women writers I read, from Margaret Atwood and Octavia Butler to Charlotte Perkins Gilman and Toni Morrison, the less alone I felt, and the more I began to see myself as part of something more.

It wasn't about one woman toiling against the universe. It was about all of us moving together, crying out into some black, inhospitable place that we would not be quiet, we would not go silently, we would not stop speaking, we would not give in.


It's hard to see the keyboard when you're trying not to cry.

Read more... )
helloladies: Horseshoe icon with the words Lady Business underneath. (Default)
[personal profile] helloladies
At the end of every week, we gather at Lady Business HQ to share media thoughts and chat about the recent happenings in our tiny spheres of human experience. Feel free to join in, but note our comment policy if you're new! :D

As always, puns are welcome.


Has everyone got their comforting animal gifs ready?

Dory from Finding Nemo singing 'Just keep swimming' to Marvin
helloladies: Horseshoe icon with the words Lady Business underneath. (Default)
[personal profile] helloladies
Fanwork is awesome and sharing fanwork is even more awesome. Join us as we keymash and squee over our favorite fanwork, from fic (both written and podfic) to art to vids and meta and back again. If you find something you love, we encourage you to comment/favorite and let the creator know you enjoyed their work. :D


Recommendations included:
  • Captain America: Civil War — art (1), fic (1)
  • Crossover: Marvel Cinematic Universe/RPF — fic (1)
  • Critical Role — art (2), fic (2)
  • Dragon Age — fic (2)
  • Elder Scrolls Online — art (1)
  • Ghostbusters — art (1)
  • DC's Legend of Tomorrow — fic (6)
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe — vid (1)
  • Overwatch — art (1)
  • Person of Interest — art (1)
  • Saiyuki — fic (1)
  • Star Wars Rebels — fic (1)
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens — art (1), vid (1)


On to the recs! )

What fanwork have you loved recently?
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Favorite Media (favorite media)
[personal profile] helloladies
Each month, we look back over the media we loved in the previous months, from books to film to video games and more.


Read more... )
owlmoose: (lady business - kj)
[personal profile] owlmoose
Not everyone in fandom is a Trekkie, but if you participate in Western media fandom, there's no escaping the influence of Star Trek. Although Star Trek wasn't the first media property to have an active transformative works culture based around it (there are fair arguments to be made for Sherlock Holmes and The Man from U.N.C.L.E., among others), it's safe to call it one of the largest and longest-lasting. Star Trek fandom was the source of much of the culture of Western media fandom, particularly the common terminology (including "slash" and "Mary Sue"). It was also one of the first Western media fandoms to be based largely in the writing and sharing of fanworks and one of the first to consist mostly of women. So it's no exaggeration to say that Western media fandom as we know it today would not most likely not exist without Star Trek, and Star Trek fandom would not have been able to flourish and grow if Gene Roddenberry and the original IP holders had come down hard with guidelines about what could and couldn't be written.

So it came as a bit of surprise, and a big disappointment, when CBS Studios and Paramount recently released a draconian list of "guidelines" for fan films, with the implication that they can sue anyone who violates them. And the threat of lawsuits isn't theoretical -- in December of 2015, CBS and Paramount filed suit against a planned feature-length fan film, Star Trek: Axanar, which is a crowdfunded followup to the short film "Prelude to Axanar" (also crowdfunded -- they asked for $10k on Kickstarter and got $100k; the resulting film premiered to strong reviews at San Diego Comic Con in 2015). Although J.J. Abrams announced in May that the lawsuit would be dropped (thanks largely to pressure from Star Trek: Beyond director and long-time Trek fan Justin Lin), as of this writing, the suit is still active, and the implication of the publication of guidelines is clear: the producers of Axanar, and anyone else thinking of getting involved with fan productions, had better toe the line, or the lawsuits will continue.

More details, some analysis, and a bit of ranting behind the cut. )

It's no coincidence, I think, that CBS/Paramount is getting jumpier about fan productions in the wake of fan dissatifaction with Star Trek: Into Darkness and the largely negative reaction to the first trailer for Star Trek: Beyond. That trailer premiered in December 2015 -- as did the Axanar lawsuit. CBS is also actively ramping up production on a new TV series that will initially be aired only on paid subscription services, and although fans are more optimistic about its prospects (showrunner Bryan Fuller is certainly saying all the right things, it's understandable that CBS and Paramount might be nervous. Why would fans shell out their money to see official productions when there are fan productions that better fit their vision of what Star Trek ought to be? Of course, from my position in fandom, their perspective is exactly backwards. Fan films and fan fiction helped keep fans engaged with the canon for the long years between movies and TV series, and fandom kept Star Trek alive when it otherwise might have been a one-season TV series, lost to history. CBS and Paramount should be encouraging the fan creativity that effectively serves them as free advertising, not treating fans as the competition. Or, if they must see fan films as competition, they should take the incentive to produce better content. Heavy-handed tactics like lawsuits and prohibitive guidelines will only drive loyal fans away, while providing no value to attract new ones. Don't squash the fan films: let a hundred flowers bloom, and watch your audience grow.
helloladies: Horseshoe icon with the words Lady Business underneath. (Default)
[personal profile] helloladies
At the end of every week, we gather at Lady Business HQ to share media thoughts and chat about the recent happenings in our tiny spheres of human experience. Feel free to join in, but note our comment policy if you're new! :D

As always, puns are welcome.


This week ends with a solidarity fistbump for all the girls in the audience of Ghostbusters (2016) who had or will have their sexual awakening due to Kate McKinnon.

Kate McKinnon winks and then smiles slowly


(We also finally named this. Go us.)
helloladies: Horseshoe icon with the words Lady Business underneath. (Default)
[personal profile] helloladies
Sidetracks is a collaborative project featuring various essays, videos, reviews, or other Internet content that we want to share with each other. All past and current links for the Sidetracks project can be found in our Sidetracks tag.


Read more... )
spindizzy: Text icon: "And then canon got fucked so everyone lived happily ever after." (Canon got fucked)
[personal profile] spindizzy
I'm starting to think that this column might actually be good for me. If I'm left to my own devices, I tend to forget to actually make time for books, I prioritise writing and fanfic over anything else, and then I burn out like a bastard because I forget that you need to consume good media to produce good media. Writing this is giving me a solid reason to actually make the time, which I probably wouldn't do otherwise.

(Also I'm noticing a pattern of "If I can put your book down long enough to go to sleep, I'm probably not going to pick it up again." WHY BRAIN, THIS IS A TERRIBLE HABIT TO GET INTO, STOP THAT.)

Books, graphic novels and manga read:
  1. The Governess Affair by Courtney Milan

  2. A Kiss For Midwinter by Courtney Milan

  3. The Heiress Effect by Courtney Milan

  4. Vinland Saga Volume One by Makoto Yukimura

  5. Ninefox Gambit by Yoon Ha Lee

  6. Union Jack: London Falling by Christos Gage and Mike Perkins

  7. Zodiac Starforce by Kevin Panetta and Paulina Ganucheau

  8. Innocent Bird Volume One by Hirotaka Kisaragi



Read more... )
helloladies: Horseshoe icon with the words Lady Business underneath. (Default)
[personal profile] helloladies
At the end of every week, we gather at Lady Business HQ to share media thoughts and chat about the recent happenings in our tiny spheres of human experience. Feel free to join in, but note our comment policy if you're new! :D

As always, puns are welcome.


This week was so terrible that there are no words for it. Have a blanket fort.

a dog pulls a blue blanket off the top of a cage and wraps up in it as he climbs in and lays down


Also, a poll. )
bookgazing: (Default)
[personal profile] bookgazing
Quinn King and Rachel Goldberg lying on striped sun loungers

The first series of Lifetime's 2015 show, UnREAL is set in the brutal, claustrophobic world of Everlasting; a reality TV show styled on dating programs like The Bachelor. UnREAL's world exists on three planes: the backstage world of the crew; the on-camera world of staged Everlasting moments, and the "behind the scenes" (perpetually filmed) world of the Everlasting cast. On-camera and behind the scenes, a group of women compete for the attentions of Adam Cromwell; the wealthy, currently disgraced, heir to a the fortune of a British hotel magnate. Back-stage. the largely female crew vie to push these women, or "their girls" as they call them with a faint whiff of pimps, into creating drama that will send the show's ratings through the roof. Despite the private mansion, the helicopter rides, and the champagne laced dining experiences, the world of Everlasting is just as hard and savage as any dystopia you've seen on the big screen in the last few years.

Read more... )
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Adventures Elsewhere (adventures elsewhere)
[personal profile] helloladies
Adventures Elsewhere collects our reviews, guest posts, articles, and other content we've spread across the Internet recently! See what we've been up in our other projects. :D


Read more... )
renay: Pink pony with brown hair and wings on a yellow background bucking hind legs in the air. (Default)
[personal profile] renay
To say my reading goals were high for 2016 understates the case. I refuse to say they were unrealistic. They were simply not quite doable for someone who has varied interests and also has trouble focusing for long periods of time on one task (in this instance, reading) due to Anxiety Brain and depression. I adjusted a bit in May, toned down some goals, and started tracking them differently. It's been a big help! Read more... )

That's been my literary 2016 so far. What have you loved?
helloladies: Horseshoe icon with the words Lady Business underneath. (Default)
[personal profile] helloladies
At the end of every week, we gather at Lady Business HQ to share media thoughts and chat about the recent happenings in our tiny spheres of human experience. Puns welcome.


In theory, eventually this feature will have a name once we all agree on one. In the meantime, to open the festivities, a gif to sum up 2016 so far:

a black bear holding up his paws with white block letters saying how about no
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Sidetracks (sidetracks)
[personal profile] helloladies
Sidetracks is a collaborative project featuring various essays, videos, reviews, or other Internet content that we want to share with each other. All past and current links for the Sidetracks project can be found in our Sidetracks tag.


Read more... )
spindizzy: (I am so done with your shit)
[personal profile] spindizzy
I accidentally got out a boat-load of comic trades from my library to fill in a reading gap – I wanted something sort and simple that I'd be able to read quickly! And I was planning to talk about how writing this column really encouraged me to, y'know, actually make that time, to find things that I could read as discuss no matter how busy I was doing other things!

... That may or may not have been a couple of days before Captain America #1 dropped, and before the spoilers about Civil War II surfaced, and... And I looked at the stack of comics I'd just read and went "Do I really want to give Marvel my words this week? Really?"

I didn't, quite frankly. I was tired and angry and tired of being angry -- but the comics I read this week were creators who had nothing to do with the shitshow, or the characters Marvel hasn't done badly by! Not talking about them wouldn't affect the problem at all! So if I sound tired and impatient with some of these? I REALLY WAS.

(For bonus points this week: I have been literally up to my elbows in comics because I'm in charge of culling our selection! I have seen lots that I want to read! Sure would be nice if mainstream comics loved me as much as I love them!)

ANYWAY: BOOKS. :\

Books, graphic novels and manga read:
  1. Kingyo Used Books Volume Three by Seimu Yoshizaki

  2. The Ancient Magus' BrideVolume One by Kore Yamazaki

  3. 2k to 5k by Rachael Aaron

  4. Captain Marvel: In Pursuit of Flight by Kelly Sue DeConnick, Dexter Soy, Emma Ríos, Richard Elson, Karl Kesel and Al Barrionuevo

  5. The Red Virgin and the Vision of Utopia by Mary M Talbot and Bryan Talbot

  6. Sigil: Out of Time by Mike Carey, Leonard Kirk, Pat Olliffe and Jelena Djurdjevic

  7. Pretty Deadly Volume One by Kelly Sue DeConnick and Emma Ríos

  8. Generation Hope: Schism by Kieron Gillen and Salvador Espin



Recommended daily allowance of salt behind the cut! )
owlmoose: (lady business - kj)
[personal profile] owlmoose
"Kid Dark Against the Machine", the new short story by Tansy Raynor Roberts, is the latest entry in Book Smugglers Publishing's season of superhero stories. It's available as an ebook as well as on the Book Smugglers blog

I can't even pretend to be objective about this story. It's got superheroes and reunion narratives, it plays with tropes and gender roles, and it's got Tansy Raynor Roberts, of whom I am a huge fangirl, mostly for her work on the Galactic Suburbia podcast -- my first foray into the world of fannish podcasting. But for all that I love Roberts as a commentator and fellow fan, I haven't spent much time reading her fiction. Happily, the one story of hers that I have previously read is "Cookie Cutter Superhero", her contribution to the (most excellent and highly recommended) anthology Kaleidoscope. This story is set in the same universe as Kid Dark and features a few of the same characters. I enjoyed "Cookie Cutter Superhero" a great deal, so when I learned there was a follow-up, I jumped on the chance to read it and spend a little more time in this fascinating world.

The underlying premise is that superheroes are real, their powers and identities chosen essentially by a lottery -- all over the world, there are machines that select one person to gain superpowers every six months, assigning them a codename and skill set. When a new hero is called, the machine selects an existing hero to retire, and they lose their powers. So anyone can be a hero, but only by the whims of fate, and there's no guarantee of how long it will last -- a few heroes only get one six-month term, while others remain active for decades. It makes for an interesting dynamic, both among the heroes (who, at least in Australia, where both stories are set, live and work together as a team) and the unpowered people.

"Cookie Cutter Superhero" focused on a teen girl who is called by the machine to become powered; "Kid Dark Against the Machine" takes us to the other side of the equation, and introduces us to a young man who was a hero in his youth but has since returned to live among the "mortals". In the good old days, he was Kid Dark, sidekick to a brooding crime fighter named The Dark (if you think this sounds familiar, that's clearly intentional). Now he's just a guy called Griff, doing odd jobs at a group home for children, reluctantly studying for his social work degree, and avoiding his past as much as possible. He thought he was out of that life forever, until one of the kids, a boy named Liam, reports that he's dreaming about another machine -- one that makes supervillians instead of heroes. And Griff is forced to do two things: ask an old teammate for help, and admit that he might miss being a superhero after all.

Cut for spoilers )

All in all, I can easily recommend this story to anyone who enjoys superheroes, coming of age, interesting world building, and/or men and women being friends. And now I'm off to explore the rest of Roberts's short fiction, which I'm sure will be a pleasurable journey.
helloladies: Gray icon with a horseshoe open side facing down with pink text underneath that says Fanwork Recs (fanwork recs)
[personal profile] helloladies
Fanwork is awesome and sharing fanwork is even more awesome. Join us as we keymash and squee over our favorite fanwork, from fic (both written and podfic) to art to vids and meta and back again.


Recommendations included:
  • The Avengers — art (1), fic (2)
  • Avengers Academy — fic (1)
  • Captain America: Civil War — fic (2)
  • DC Comics — art (1)
  • Hamilton — art (1)
  • Hannibal (TV) — fic (1)
  • Mad Max: Fury Road — fic (1)
  • The Man from U.N.C.L.E. — fic (1)
  • Mass Effect — art (1)
  • The Musketeers — vids (2)
  • OMG Check Please! — fic (1)
  • Rivers of London - Ben Aaronovitch — fic (1)
  • Smallville — fic (1)
  • Star Wars — fic (2)
  • X-Men — fic (1)


On to the recs! )

What fanwork have you loved recently?
renay: Pink pony with brown hair and wings on a yellow background bucking hind legs in the air. (Default)
[personal profile] renay
This article links to spoilers for Captain America: Steve Rogers #1.

In May, Marvel released Captain America: Steve Rogers #1, chock full of shenanigans and a PR campaign full of tomfoolery. Marvel decided they could tell a ~fun story~ via controversial means and promote it consequence-free using the Power of Social Media. It's taken me awhile to come to terms with my first really big Comics Disappointment (I'm sure I have more in my future!), and the discourse immediately after was too toxic. Read more... )
renay: Pink pony with brown hair and wings on a yellow background bucking hind legs in the air. (Default)
[personal profile] renay
How you react to the first chapter of Ninefox Gambit by Yoon Ha Lee is a good indicator of your reaction to all the other wild things you'll see in later chapters. (My reaction throughout: "WTF is that? WTF is this? WTF IS HAPPENING???" You start with calendrical rot and end up in a battle sequence that uses a system of loyalty to create defenses known as formations that are then used to fight bad guys and resist weapons. But don't worry: there are robots (called servitors), so at least one thing will be familiar.

It took me a solid four or five chapters to feel comfortable in this world, and that's only because I started assuming the calendar was a form of time manipulation and pushed it aside until I had more world building in my toolkit, because I never understand time travel, anyway.

Approaching sans worry about what I was missing helped because this novel isn't pulling punches or providing tons of context clues to hold your hand. It wants you to work for the world building and the characterization and the visualization, and it's like this book knew that was my weakness. "CHALLENGE ACCEPTED, BOOK!", I said in Chapter 3, "I'LL REVEAL ALL YOUR SECRETS!". By the end I was grateful because figuring out how all the pieces fit together was fun and also gut-wrenchingly painful because a deep dive results in lots of empathy pain, ha ha ha. But take some advice from an extremely visual reader: if you give this novel a try, give yourself the benefit of the doubt. ♥ Read more... )
helloladies: Horseshoe icon with the words Lady Business underneath. (Default)
[personal profile] helloladies
Sidetracks is a collaborative project featuring various essays, videos, reviews, or other Internet content that we want to share with each other. All past and current links for the Sidetracks project can be found in our Sidetracks tag.


Read more... )

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