2 links 17 August 2017

Aug. 17th, 2017 11:15 pm
sasha_feather: Retro-style poster of skier on pluto.   (Default)
[personal profile] sasha_feather posting in [community profile] access_fandom
Eric Deggans on NPR (All Things Considered):

Netflix, ABC Portrayals Of Autism Still Fall Short, Critics Say

http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2017/08/11/542668400/netflix-abc-portrayals-of-autism-still-fall-short-critics-say

You can read or listen to this piece, which is about "The Good Doctor" and "Atypical".

(no subject)

Aug. 16th, 2017 05:42 pm
skygiants: the princes from Into the Woods, singing (agony)
[personal profile] skygiants
It's hard for me not to unfavorably compare every Isabelle Hollington Gothic to Trelawny, the one with the identical non-identical constantly-swapping twins, but The Marchington Inheritance runs a reasonable second for batshit plot resolutions.

Our Heroine is a children's book illustrator named Avril, which would be fine if she were not ALSO notable for her family reputation as a Strung-Out Sulky Counter-Culture Fight-The-Power Teen Rebel with constant Rage Against the Preppy machine, which meant that I had "Complicated" and "Sk8er Boi" stuck on rotate in my head for the entire duration of this novel. THANKS, ISABELLE HOLLAND.

spoilers are full of hilariously plausibly annoying children )

Hǎo de, shǒuxiàng!

Aug. 14th, 2017 07:39 pm
gramarye1971: Jim Hacker about to receive some illegal alcohol in "The Moral Dimension" (YM: Diplomacy)
[personal profile] gramarye1971
As a small bright spot in an otherwise dismal weekend, I received a AO3 message requesting permission to translate Resource Allocation, the extremely silly Harry Potter/Yes, Minister crossover drabble I wrote ages ago, into Chinese. So with thanks to [archiveofourown.org profile] liangdeyu, 【翻译】Resource Allocation资源分配, is now available. I'm very pleased to see it.

(This does remind me that at some point I need to pick up a copy of Yes, Prime Manipulator, a book about the Chinese translation of YPM -- Hǎo de, shǒuxiàng -- written by the translator.)

1 link from Nicola Griffith

Aug. 13th, 2017 02:20 am
sasha_feather: the back of furiosa's head (furiosa: back of head)
[personal profile] sasha_feather posting in [community profile] access_fandom
Nicola Griffith:

An Open Letter to All Writing Programmes, Workshops, and Retreats (July 27, 2017)

https://nicolagriffith.com/2017/07/27/an-open-letter-to-all-writing-programmes-workshops-and-retreats

So here’s a public promise: after I have fulfilled my immediate contractual obligations, I will no longer support in any way any writing-related programme or organisation that does not have a public commitment to and specific timetable for becoming accessible. I will call on other writers to do the same.

(no subject)

Aug. 12th, 2017 05:51 pm
skygiants: Clopin from Notre-Dame de Paris; text 'sans misere, sans frontiere' (comment faire un monde)
[personal profile] skygiants
I just finished Colson Whitehead's The Underground Railroad, which is definite proof that a book-length allegory CAN ALSO be a coherent and compelling novel. (Is this a Kazuo Ishiguro callout post? MAYBE.)

The easiest and most facile way to describe The Underground Railroad is basically like Underground the TV show meets Snowpiercer. I mean, significantly less silly than Snowpiercer, which is a deeply silly movie -- but insofar as it's a train-based road trip for your life in which every stop is an Allegory On the Evils of Class and Capitalism, like that, except in this case it's an allegory on America's original sins.

The book's heroine is Cora, a woman who escapes from a deep-South plantation on an enormous hidden network of rails and tunnels, gaining and losing allies along the way. Each time she gets off she thinks that maybe she's found a place where she can stop and live a human life, and each place she visits reflects a different knife-angle of the generally horrific history of race in America -- alternate histories, but real ones.

Allegory aside, Cora is very much a real and complex and compelling character, and the places she visits have heft to them. Cora's identity is bound up in the legend and mystery of her mother Mabel, the one slave in the plantation's history (before Cora) who was able to escape and vanish completely; she's a real person, too, and so are all the other perspectives that we glimpse briefly in interstitial interludes along Cora's journey. It's a really good book. It's a very page-turning book, and although it's (obviously) extremely grim at times, it's not actually a hopeless book.

(no subject)

Aug. 10th, 2017 08:49 pm
skygiants: Yong Ha from Sungkyunkwan Scandal (trollface)
[personal profile] skygiants
To be honest, I didn't really expect to love the kdrama Descendants of the Sun, a romantic melodrama about a special forces soldier and an ER surgeon. I'm skeptical about romanticizing the military! Contemporary melodrama is not my thing! Probably there were going to be too many dudes all over the place everywhere anyway!

OH, HOW WRONG I WAS. Descendants of the Sun is a GEM.

Screencaps cannot capture the majesty )

1 Link: Netflix's "Atypical"

Aug. 10th, 2017 10:58 pm
sasha_feather: Retro-style poster of skier on pluto.   (Default)
[personal profile] sasha_feather posting in [community profile] access_fandom
Mickey Rowe at Teen Vogue:
"Netflix's "Atypical" Was a Major Disappointment for Autism Representation"

http://www.teenvogue.com/story/netflix-atypical-autism-representation

In watching the show, I noticed that it seems to play into stereotypes that I’ve experienced firsthand that could have easily been avoided and that may present damaging information about autistic people. There is so much misinformation about autism in part because we nearly always learn about autism from non-autistic people, instead of learning about autism from autistic adults.

Nonverbal Communication in SF

Aug. 10th, 2017 04:55 pm
jesse_the_k: drawings of white hand in ASL handshapes W T F (WTF)
[personal profile] jesse_the_k posting in [community profile] access_fandom
Seems like the "Universal Translators" are always auditory, eh?

Lynne Thomas of Uncanny Magazine writes about her daughter Caitlin, who doesn't speak and communicates a lot. Lynne reviews the overwhelming privilege of the spoken word in SF:

https://www.themarysue.com/caitlin-is-not-groot/

One of the commenters points out that Marvel has a new, nonverbal, hero coming:

http://comicbook.com/marvel/2017/08/04/inhumans-black-bolt-communicates-through-medusa/

MY COMPUTER IS BACK

Aug. 10th, 2017 08:41 pm
highlyeccentric: Dessert first - pudding in a teacup (Dessert first)
[personal profile] highlyeccentric
Like my last PC, I burned out the motherboard in a heatwave. So far so normal, then. My files all seem to be here.

This makes up for the fact that the marriage equality Discourse is hell.

(no subject)

Aug. 9th, 2017 09:57 pm
skygiants: Kyoko from Skip Beat! making a mad flaily dive (oh flaily flaily)
[personal profile] skygiants
I enjoyed Martha Wells' Wheel of the Infinite but I am also pretty sure that my reading experience was devised in exactly the wrong way to allow me to appreciate the plot as a coherent narrative.

I read the first half of the book on the plane between San Francisco and Chicago, which meant I got all the fantastic initial setup: a long-suffering middle-aged heroine, exiled from her home city for accidentally getting three husbands killed while following the wrong prophetic vision, accidentally rescues a cute swordsman in a brief break from protecting a plucky theater troupe from a cursed stage puppet!

Then the cute young swordsman immediately decides to be her joint boyfriend and bodyguard because he has nothing else to do with his life, and she's like "he followed me home, can I keep him? ...wait I'm an exiled superpowered divine avatar, I literally don't have to ask anyone else, I CAN JUST KEEP HIM :D" and then he and she and the theater troupe all go back to her home city to sort out a potentially apocalyptic problem in the annual setting-the-world-in-order religious ritual and also, very importantly, get the theater puppet un-cursed, and at about this point I got to Chicago and although I was enjoying myself immensely I didn't really have time to read another word until I was on a flight back to Boston.

So at this point I opened my Kobo again and spoilers! )

reading game PDFs

Aug. 8th, 2017 09:30 pm
yhlee: icosahedron (d20) (d20 (credit: bag_fu on LJ))
[personal profile] yhlee posting in [community profile] ebooks
I was wondering what folks would recommend as a solution for reading tabletop RPG and other PDFs? I used to do this on a Kindle DX, but sometimes the graphics-heavy ones would cause it go slow, and then my DX broke, and I don't think they make new ones anymore so I don't trust them? I have a Kindle Paperwhite, but the screen size is a no-go because they typically make some full-sized (8.5"x11" or thereabouts). And ideally I'd like to be able to just load them from my desktop using a USB cable. I have an older iPad, but it doesn't have the USB thing and it's no good to me because my husband and daughter steal it to play games. XD Help?
gramarye1971: Punie Tanaka from Dai Mahou Touge, looking satisfied in front of a burning Tokyo Tower (Dai Mahou Touge: Tora Tora Tora)
[personal profile] gramarye1971
I'm feeling a bit too disorganised to post much at the moment, but one fun thing I've been doing lately has been testing out an online Cyberpunk 2020 tabletop game through roll20.net, a site that lets you use webcams and chatrooms to run tabletop campaigns in real time. The GM's a friend who's run a number of our campaigns before, but we're playing with several other different people in different time zones, so there's a new element to it as well.

Our game is set in a cyberpunk retrofuture 2020 Baltimore, with the following premises:
- Basically, there are cell phones but no real Internet, Taylor Swift is the current U.S. president, the Cold War turned hot in space about two decades ago, and the Inner Harbor and Johns Hopkins University are two of a handful of arcologies in a sea of shantytowns and otherwise crumbling infrastructure.
- Our characters are an A-Team-like group of hired guns and techies who operate out of a food truck that sells kimchi tacos.
- I'm essentially playing a character from the Gunslinger Girl anime: a cybernetically modified Ukrainian sniper/former child soldier who looks about 14 or 15 but is actually in her early 20s. She was "rescued" (more like kidnapped) by a U.S. charity that's involved in money laundering under the guise of helping war orphans, and she's young and blonde enough to be a public face for their child solider rehabilitation program. Unfortunately, she actually rather enjoyed wetwork operations, so she's working with the kimchi taco folks to save up money to go back to her home country and jump right back into the action.

Apart from some technical glitches, we managed our first mission well enough -- no one in our party died or caught on fire, and we got a busted-out sedan as a secondary vehicle to supplement the food truck. It's been a while since I've played such a morally bankrupt character type, but dumping all of my good stats into the weapons skills means that I don't feel too bad about treating her like a point-and-shoot glass cannon. Will see if the mechanics continue to work out.

(no subject)

Aug. 7th, 2017 10:55 pm
skygiants: Nellie Bly walking a tightrope among the stars (bravely trotted)
[personal profile] skygiants
Despite its incredibly bland title, Into the Darkness turned out to be one of the most interesting Barbara Michaels gothics I've yet read.

This is one of the ones where Barbara Michaels decides to break the "girl meets house" mold and go instead with "girl meets career." Our Heroine Meg Venturi, called back to her hometown for her grandfather's funeral, finds that he's left her half of the family jewelry business; the other half has (of course) been left to his dark and brooding protege, whom half the town is convinced murdered Meg's grandfather and the other half the town thinks was probably just blackmailing him.

Obviously, this is Bachelor A. Bachelor B is Meg's annoying fake cousin (there's always a cousin in there somewhere), Bachelor C is the boring lawyer who keeps trying to mansplain Meg's inheritance to her, and Bachelor D is the married businessman that Meg has been having an affair with but who rapidly becomes irrelevant to the plot.

Meanwhile, Meg's grandmother keeps cheerfully sharing conversations that she had overnight with the ghost of Meg's dead grandfather, the housekeeper will not stop pretending to be Mrs. Danvers, someone keeps mailing threatening antique jewelry to the house, there's another pile of probably-stolen and certainly-priceless antique jewelry hidden in the back of Meg's closet, and every so often there will be a murder attempt. Throughout it all, Meg comes to two realizations: a.) she really, genuinely loves the jewelry business and b.) she is really, genuinely sick of Various Bachelors treating her like a Gothic ingenue.

Spoilers under the cut )

The New Twin Peaks

Aug. 7th, 2017 10:16 pm
varadia: (Default)
[personal profile] varadia
I get the feeling that this new season is mostly a meandering meditation on change, and age, and small town life, and holding onto the past and being trapped in old patterns . . . . with a soupcon of crazycakes and the Cooper plotline to kind of hang the meander on.

Hmm.

(no subject)

Aug. 6th, 2017 11:40 pm
skygiants: pearl from SU, looking suspiciously down the length of a sword (terrifying renegade pearl)
[personal profile] skygiants
Over the past two weeks I have gone straight from a professional conference to a wedding to VividCon, lugged my roommate's oversized suitcase across four cities, hung out with innumerable incredibly delightful people, seen an equally large number of really stellar vids, visited at least six used bookstores and bought at least ten Gothic novels.

Now I am home and exhausted, so I'm just going to leave my rushed but heartfelt VividCon premiere here and go to bed:

Title: Clean Light (music by The Mowgli's)



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(with thanks to [personal profile] aquamirage for valuable early feedback!)

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