reenka: (well. it's true. -.-)
Going onwards! I will finish these notes today if it's the death of me! :O And then on to writing fics madly because OMG PROPHECY SO SOON SO SOON AAAAAHHHHH!!! *breathes*

Okay, I can do this :P

Also: I'm being more emotional about this than about 95% of the stuff that happened to me last year. Why am I so lame :(

Reena's DH notes; chapters 16-29 )
reenka: (Default)
I loved the book very much, but mostly because I love Harry very much and that colors my every reaction, which is heavily influenced by his. If you didn't like it, we probably should wait until we're both a bit more emotionally distanced to talk critically, though feel free to read; I feel very emotionally vulnerable and volatile as the books' and my fandom story comes to an end. I'm still posting this for Amalin & Ste, and because I wrote so many notes I feel like it's a paper's worth :>

I'm gonna post my notes as soon as I finish typing up the next part, so be ready for spam. ;P

Reena's Harry Potter notes, chapters 3-16. )
reenka: (a little obsessed?)
So like, in August 2005, post-HBP, I had this Hugfic challenge thing where I challenged people to write gen H/D preslash sorta stuff (where Harry hugs Draco) without shmoop or sap. And lo! And behold! The WONDER AND GLORY:

Amalin (otherwise known as [ profile] monochromal, the awesomelicious writer behind 'Transformation'), wrote a WHOLE NOVELLA for me!! I WIN AT LIFE!!1 GO READ IT NOW, BEFORE IT'S TOO LATE AND DH HAS PERMANENTLY FRIED THOSE DELICATE POST-HBP SYNAPSES :O

Inexpert and Unexpected Things
by Amalin


    And also! Watch this space for my half of the bargain (also maybe only a quarter as longass but still post-HBP gen!H/D-ish), sometime tomorrow, before I leave to hang out with [ profile] addictedkitten & pick up DH, and fandom changes 4evah. D: D:
reenka: (Default)
How Do You Measure The Life
Of A Woman Or A Man

In Truths That She Learned
Or In Times That He Cried
In Bridges He Burned
Or The Way That She Died

It's Time Now - To Sing Out
Though The Story Never Ends
Let's Celebrate
Remember A Year In The Life Of Friends

Remember the Love
Remember the Love
Remember the Love
Measure In Love

(- Seasons of Love)

...Just seeing old faces, and listening to people talk, and trying to write, and talking to Amalin about Harry all the time (and thinking of all the babiez I can't help imagining), and a whole period in all our lives drawing to a close.... Suddenly I just started crying like crazy, which never happens. It feels awful and wonderful and I don't quite know what to do with myself, and for some reason I can write HP again, but I still can't settle enough to reread the books (yet, haha) and it seems I'll only finish my Death Eater!Draco afterwards, after it's deeply AU. But it seems fitting that the fic I will release is a goodbye of sorts in itself.

Nothing else will ever feel like this. <3.

Here, a Lullabye for a Stormy Night by Vienna Teng, that sums up how I've been feeling while I write and Harry at the end of OoTP, which is all that's on my mind again. :I
reenka: (a little obsessed?)
Hi, fandom! (Does 'fandom' still read this lj?? Oh well.)

This is my spoiler policy: THERE ARE NO SPOILERS. Not cut, not referred to, not even MENTIONED as EXISTING (and yeah that includes how one feels in reaction), okay. I will stop reading my flist the day DH comes out, but luckily I trust most of you, and if I don't I'll filter you out ;)

I won't be online after DH at all until probably after the Prophecy con (that's after August 4th), and I'm not going to be around on lj for this coming week either except... except... to make certain announcements.

And. To post fic :D :D :D

So. See you on the flipside, people! I am calm and excited, I trust JKR after HBP, and I believe the Trio will live and that's all that matters to me. Draco too, the little bastard. <3. WOO-HOO! This is going to be fun >:D
reenka: (life is like that)
I think me & Amalin decided at some point that the OoTP movie (or rather, OoTP!Harry specifically) exists just for the two of us :D :D

I don't know what to say about this movie 'cause I've said so much of it in comments already that I'm like "....I LOVED IT OKAY". And it's not like it's perfect or anything, obviously it could've been so much more, but then OoTP was huge and imperfect too. There's some kind of parallel in there somewhere.

Maybe I'll write a review after I see it again on Saturday. It definitely makes me want to write about Harry again, and it makes me want the seventh book and it makes me want to reread OoTP and it just makes me want to wallow, because HARRY IS MY W00BIE, OKAY, HE JUST IS. :O

...maybe a FEW spoilery things. -.- )
reenka: (life is like that)
I like narrowing things down to catchy um, catch-phrases, and [ profile] angua9 is really good with those.

I too, am feeling the excitement-- and the pressure-- pre-OoTP!movie and um, book 7-- what with me being blah about HP and not finishing my novella or following fandom and suddenly trying to re-watch the movies & reread the books and now, panic! and woe! and whee! And OMG WHAT HAPPENED TO DAN'S HAIR??!?! (one year after the rest of fandom, to be sure.)

Anyway, back to catch-phrases. I like the idea of separating people in fandom not into 'canon-purists' and 'fanon-lovers' (or what have you), but rather folks predominantly into 'appropriation' vs. 'appreciation'. Not that it's really that simple-- because plenty of people do both, just separate the two-- or do both and see appopriation of characters/world as a form of appreciation entirely consistent with canon-love. There are more than a few H/D fans (like myself) who love and enjoy canon-- even canon pairings & canon author-intentions & canonically implicit balances or underlying truths-- but also love expanding upon them, messing with them, trying to take and stretch them to fit our own vision of the truth & beauty that is Harry/Draco. All that, and without being delusional, too! Who'd've thunk it!! :D

I mean, the truth is that I empathize with both camps but am naturally more of an appreciator than an appropriator with more complex/developed canons-- that is, I naturally appropriate fairy-tales and myths, but most modern stories are too darn complex and non-archetypal to call my own and write in comfortably.
    But I can blather on and on! )

It's like any love, isn't it? You can see the flaws of the things you love most (though the point there is that you can also accept without stigmatizing or whitewashing). You can empathize with and appreciate things when you really love them the most (though, uh, the point there is separating 'true' love from 'false'/possessive/delusional love, no easy task). And you can both understand, and love, and cut down your darlings-- cut them down to the quick for a good story, too.

It really sucks, though, 'cause I love snappy definitions, it's just then I must quibble with them. ^^; No one was ever amusing or cute talking about subtleties & shades of grey. D: That is such a rip-off, honestly. D: This is why, in the end, I prefer talking to people who already know what I mean, so that I don't have to define my terms first, even though that can be half the fun. I mean, defining terms can take ages & ages and then people will tend to still disagree. I mean, if you agree exactly what shade of meaning 'appropriation' and 'appreciation' would have in a particular context, you wouldn't have a problem, I guess. It's just that since that is hard to come by, one ends up saying stuff that begins with '...weeelll...' and '...buuut...' even though you know exactly what the other person's talking about and are just being difficult for argument's sake. And by 'you' I mean 'me'. >___> That is because, in fact, being obscure yet difficult is my favorite pastime, right up there with reading underaged boypr0n and pretzels.

Also: [ profile] seviet's HBP!Draco & Slyths is so... canony. And the Draco strikes such an interesting balance between pointy-git and poncey bit of arse. Awww. <3.
reenka: (Default)
Things Learned While Going Through a Pile of Interesting-looking Sci-fi/Fantasy Books in B&N Tonight (or Why I Love Snap Judgments):

- If you're going to be a hard-boiled Noir anti-hero cop with a (very) hidden heart of gold, by three-legged Christ, please be sarcastic. Or self-deprecating. Or something. There's nothing more hurtful to The Mystique than an anti-hero who takes his bullshit angst Oh So Seriously.

No, you don't have to be a Boy Scout to be sympathetic (far from it), but being a sleazy douchebag isn't so helpful either. And no, no one cares that the poor widdle hard-boiled sleazeball has a shaky hand that's embarrassing and doesn't fit 'the image' of a corrupt cop slash thug. Oh, why do I even try. -.-

- If you're going to be the oh-so-fearful and badass wizard to Strike Fear Into The Hearts of Men (and Chickens)-- anti-hero Version 007.2.0-- it would help the reader if said badass stopped wanking to his own (huge! yet "vulnerable") ego throughout the story. I mean. Eventually it does start to smell and that it not sexy.

- If you're going to write Yet Another Fantasy Epic about a streetwise orphan with hidden magic powers (yes, AGAIN), it really helps if they have an easily identifiable personality, quickly distinguished from Another One of Those(tm), so that the reader may actually remember which book they're supposed to be reading. Otherwise said reader may "drift off", or perhaps simply "forget" to keep reading about Anonymous Spunky Orphan-girl #98020983 and her inevitable journey to Respectability and Bitter-sweet Coming of Age, etc etc and so on and so forth.

- If you're going to riff on the currently (unfortunately too) popular genre of Christian mythology rip-offs, please remember that actually setting your work within something recognizable as that mythos is not optional; a few references combined with ridiculous new 'twists' do not automatically a 'fresh new approach' make. If in fact you want to write about sexy demons doing sexy-demon-PI type things, please do your readers the courtesy of not getting their hopes up with smatterings of actual Christian mythology, where, you know, demons are fallen angels (from HELL) and that's kind of the point; the point is not that they're like, these supernatural beings, right, and they're otherwordly and good at kicking ass and getting chicks.

Keeping to some logical constraints in the basics of your source material isn't the same thing as keeping up with some black-and-white view of mythology you're no doubt rebelling from. I know, I know, I'm old-fashioned, what can I say.

- Okay that genderfuck book was actually cool.

But. There's just something about single 'issue' or 'provocative' fantasy books that bores me after I figure out what it is that's supposed to be shaking my worldview or whatever. Let that be a lesson to you all: I want to be stirred (not shaken), like a proper martini. Or if I'm there's shakin' goin' on, at least have some real fun with it, and not have it be a bunch of persecution and social commentary (on "ancient cultures"), more persecution, some sex, some non-fun violence, some more persecution, and then some more of the first-person narration.

Ah, forget it. "Actually cool", whut? I can criticize anything, especially when I get in touch with my inner 14-year old boy! :P

In other news, I saw Die Hard 4, and it was fun. It was also the first Die Hard movie I've seen so far :>
I saw this quote by Pauline Kael in another lj and it got me thinking in a way a slew of recent meta posts on the subject haven't managed to: "Irresponsibility is part of the pleasure of all art; it is the part the schools can't recognize."

Also, from the wiki:
    Kael had a taste for anti-hero movies that violated taboos involving sex and violence, and this reportedly alienated some of her readers. She also had a strong dislike for films that she felt were manipulative or appealed in superficial ways to conventional attitudes and feelings.

Just, I think it's so true: irresponsibility as a valid, intrinsic source of pleasure, and not just of works dealing with the 'naughty', 'bad' or controversial subject-matter, but of all artworks. In dealing with weighty subjects (such as death, life, sex, riding the bus, etc), there are a million different approaches you can take, but the effective approaches will be the ones that seduce the viewer or reader in some way. Through language, rhythm, the framing of the piece or its structure, something will inevitably end up making the brutal beautiful. That's basically the nature of art, whether it's translated into myths and classic tragedies or into wham-bam hyper violent American movies (the frame changes, in other words, but the substance of the dynamic remains).

To be didactic, to be responsible, you-- the writer you or reader you-- must be emotionally detached; odd, since a lot of the people crying for greater responsibility have what may seem like excess emotional response to certain triggers in the artwork. But their response isn't to the work; it's to the basically superficial relationship the work has with their own internal world. They are seeing themselves more than they're seeing the 'picture'; in a way, all art wants you to see yourself in it, of course, but it's a self transformed. Art-- good or trashy or outright disgusting-- by its nature tends to want to seduce you, to take you on a ride, to communicate itself in bright neon colors, to reflect upon you. It's as irresponsible as any fling, as any infatuation, as anything where emotions are involved, unpredictable and seemingly universal but always feeling uniquely tailored to two specific individuals.

Once artwork becomes 'official' or 'canonized', for instance, to some extent it starts to bore most people sight unseen for exactly this reason: people don't want their entertainment-- or their art-- to be 'good' for them. I mean, on some level they do 'cause it feeds their ego and sense of self-importance a lot of times to own or be familiar with it, but the pleasure changes-- it becomes a selfish pleasure. If most people go to see the Mona Lisa, in other words, they'll stand there and go 'wow, that's the Mona Lisa! Wow!' without really... seeing it with fresh eyes, with eyes that are open to seduction. These people will probably have a more honest response to something they've got an actual emotional connection with, like a great photo of their favorite actress or a movie they watched at exactly the right time & the right place in their lives so that it clicked for them. What I'm saying is, you can't really grow to love Shakespeare, say, unless you don't care he's Shakespeare; I know this is true based on personal experience, at least. Reading Shakespeare's turns of phrase just makes me quite deliciously, squirmingly happy, because that man has a seriously hot way with words, know what I mean? He's got it going on. Mrrr. :D

Superficiality within art or entertainment always fails in terms of mass viewer response, too, forget critics. Everyone knows that mindless exploitative sequels suck, and once they cross that final boundary of being totally obvious they're just milking their audience, they stop making any money. Movies that really work are the ones that have fun with themselves; the ones where someone involved in them was on the ball, passionate about their performance, their movie. The audience always responds to this sense of 'realness', whether it's movie actors or writers or politicians or creature designers; the LoTR movies' success is a great example of passion at work, passion working. Ultimately, if you make something passionately, people will feel that love. If you make something just to make a quick sell, people may buy it, but they won't love it. The didactic or 'responsible' impulse, basically, is a way of valuing the end result (the 'message' or the 'sell') over the passion of the process, and thus is doomed not to have the emotional effect it aims for.

The other aspect of what attracts people is, of course, the shock value of stirring up controversy, of challenging assumptions and saying something bold & loud & quite possibly stupid (but LOUD). If you want to be heard, of course it helps to know your audience enough to know when not to shout, but generally speaking, people want their attention grabbed and molested roughly, with no lube :> The 'seduction' I mentioned is the 'slow and sensual' version, but that's not what you're going to be in the mood for every single time, generally. People look to both art & entertainment for everything they won't try or admit to wanting to try in real life, and have since the first mummers danced their first dance around the first campfire. Whether it takes the form of a deeply meaningful masterpiece (like, I dunno, 'A Clockwork Orange') or the next Hannibal Lecter movie, at its heart the process remains the same: get up in people's faces and scream bloody murder :>
reenka: ("....")
Haha, wish me luck!!

In my quest to write some kiddie porn for the masses, I decided I needed to reread book 1!

Good news so far (a few paragraphs in): I find it adorable!! :D

When I first saw it around '01 or so, I really hated the beginning so much I couldn't keep reading. I thought it was overly didactic, transparent, and painfully simplistic to the point that it was like nails on a blackboard. Now I realize what I took for heavy-handedness was actually dry English humor! :D! Hahaha! I'm like wait, wait... these are typical English class jokes, aren't they? D'oh!! :D

Also, news at 11: Harry is ADORABLE! :D I can't believe anyone EVER thought he was a nice sweet boy (pre-OoTP). I mean, I remembered that he wasn't, but it's just getting it fresh is still nice :D Totally sarcastic and rebellious and ever so certain of himself :D Actually, not that unusual for a boy his age, but he's still adorable. <3. Rereading the book is making it difficult to imagine porn happening, 'cause everyone 'snaps' or 'speaks crisply' or whatever, and there are Bertie Bott's Everyflavor beans and twinkly-eyed!Dumbly and.... I dunno. Snape is so ev01. <3.

Basically, yeah, I'm not sure if this'll really lead to chan!porn; what I realized was a serious issue is actually more the logistics-- I mean... it's extremely unlikely and unusual for kids to really do anything sexual with each other, forget hardcore (given I'm not writing molestation... which is really above & beyond the call of fannish love). Exploration... except can you really see Ron & Hermione 'exploring' when they're both all cats & dogs around each other, and Harry was totally flustered and "..." at even a kiss in fifth year? My favorite scenario of the ones given was definitely the Trio!smut in first year, but it's... I mean... flying pigs are more likely. Harry/Draco is more likely by far. Harry/Filch is probably easier to write with any believability (and I... am biologically incapable of transcending the need to believe in what I write on the psychological level... which is why I so respect f's abilities in that regard, but that's neither here nor there). o_0 I suppose crack is the only option :>

But anyway.

I saw a book predicting book 7 events put out by mugglenet(!) in the grocery store(!!) today :D It was only of moderate interest, except for the chapter on Draco's fate, which was absolutely infuriating and upsetting. And I'm not the Draco fangirl some of my friends are (although, that's a really high standard), but honestly. Dismissing him as 'cruel-hearted' and 'weak' and vain, etc at this late date-- what the hell. Saying he joined the DEs as if it's fact, and also that he joined the DEs because he truly Believed in the Cause, as per his father's teachings (as if it was fact). And then going on to say that of course he wouldn't join the Order (well, he was pretty hard-put to give the idea of protection much of a chance on the Tower, but that was before his back was 100% to the wall), so therefore his only option is to go on the run (since he's not 'good enough' or brave enough to be a spy), and of course anyone who'd gone on the run from the DEs before has died, so naturally Draco's a dead man. WTF??! I hate people. :/

Also the part where they said it's better for everyone if he dies because then Lucius and Narcissa become useless to Voldy(??!) because they'll be slain by grief and therefore Voldy will become an easier target(!???!). Of course, what can I expect from a book that seriously describes Harry as 'full of love'. I guess they mean his mother's love. As in, his mother's love is what will-- yet again-- defeat Voldy, because that's what Harry's full of.

Seriously, what a let down, if that does happen. Jeez. Anticlimactic much? Yeah, Harry wins because of his MOM. Again. Great. *eyeroll*
reenka: (a little obsessed?)
The Day has come when I don't want to read H/D hatesex, it seems. o_0

Well, at least this fic got me thinking about H/D (and my own fic to be finished in a month before book 7) again. Not talking about all the chan I've signed up for-- of which I'd probably end up writing one fic if I'm lucky, but hey, I have an excuse-- my mom's been over this past week & I'm lucky I could keep up with my email, at least.

Anyway-- Christ. You know what, I finally know how some of my more 'soft-hearted' Draco-loving friends feel (I think). I know I'm all about the rough & badass!Harry & realism but daaaaaaamn, I hate mean!Harry when he's that mean and that blind and that unreasonable :/ I hate the thought that I've RP'd or actually written him as that heartless, because okay, he's not the most empathic boy on the block, but CHRIST, he's not... relentless. He really wouldn't fuck Draco so callously-- or at all-- if he had so many viable issues with him, and in fact he probably wouldn't fuck him at all if he still actively disliked him. I know, I know, a bit late to be saying this now (after all the times I've halfway argued against the idea and all the hatesex I've read & tried to write) but DUDE.

I just barely skimmed that 'cause lizardspots said it made her like H/D even though she didn't before, and... meh. I -am- a shipper and a romantic and I don't think fics should always cater to that (and I often hate it when they do), but... honestly man, honestly, I'm sorry if I ever portrayed him this way because in NO WAY is Harry THAT bad. :/ I mean, this is making me want to take up my old redemptionista placards except for Harry, not Draco. :/

I know geoviki said this is how it'd 'really' go down, and... dude, how could you ship H/D if you think it has to be quite THIS fucked up to be 'real'. :/ I really hate the idea that fanon is one's 'only option' for halfway sane/healthy H/D. I mean, I like fucked up. I write fucked up. But... in the end, I'm playing with (IC) possibilities, not writing what I consider to be 'pure canon-realism'. If I did, I would need to make them really See each other, to understand or at least face their issues, because you know what? That. That is a lot more 'realistic' and probably inevitable than them fucking.

It's not that I need them to be friends or think they will be in canon-- though obviously I've got a soft spot for friendship!H/D. It's just... hatesex, to me, is all about violent emotion and the intense way they react to each other, the crazy way they push each other's buttons. It's not about hate or even rage, not really. In full blast, in actuality, these emotions are extremely destructive and extremely non-conducive to relationships of any sort, fucked up or not. What I like isn't hate or rage, and luckily Harry & Draco don't really feel either emotion towards each other at full blast, not for real. Harry doesn't hate Draco, Draco doesn't really hate Harry (though I think he really doesn't like him & it's mutual). Lack of liking and resentment does not murderous hate make, though. Man. o_0 I mean, I think Harry may be close to 'really' hating Snape post-HBP, but we have to hope he'll never really cross that border and become capable of Crucio-ing Bellatrix or Snape or even Voldemort, because IF HE DOES, he BECOMES LIKE VOLDEMORT.

And dark!Harry love and actual mental linkage and anger issues aside, Harry. Is. NOT. VOLDEMORT. As in, not sociopathic.

And yeah, I can tell that fic wasn't really trying to portray Harry as equivalent to the Dark Lord-- just as a reeeeeally angry teenager with reeeeally low empathy or emotional intelligence, but even in OoTP he was more frustrated-angry than purely unhinged-angry, and that's a serious difference. One reason I'm so insistent here is of course because I'm afraid I've written Harry like this-- as just plain mean, as unhinged, as someone who truly cannot deal with people's emotions or his own, especially when he labels those people as disposable or wrong or 'bad'. But unlike saaaay, Voldemort, Harry's shown himself to be capable of reconsidering people, of truly considering people as they are presented to him, even if he jumps to judgments. He wants to figure out the truth, to do the right thing, which is important! He never really means to hurt anyone seriously, not once in all the books.

He's a stupid teenager, yeah. He plays around with dark spells carelessly, like Sirius or Snape might have, yeah. But it's playing around, it's unintentional, which is what makes what he did to Draco something other than, you know, attempted murder, yeah, just as what Sirius did to Snape wasn't really attempted murder either, yeah? (Probably.)

So when Harry seriously thinks that Draco is better off dead in that fic-- hoooooold up. NO. As in, no way, no how, that's not Harry.

    "So you're a fairy-boy," he said in a conversational tone. "No wonder Parkinson always acts like she needs a good, hard shag."

See, even that is too mean for me. *cries*

HAVE I GONE SOFT???! T____T I mean, my Draco might say that to Harry, but then that's because Draco's all about the bluff and bombast and overt, if often inept mockery, and Harry, if he said it, would have to be SINCERE, wherein lies the rub.

I feel so horribly guilty and nearly sick to my stomach about the post-OoTP non-connish fics I've written where Harry edged that line, now :( And btw, I was sick to my stomach then, too, and it was supposed to be clear that Harry was especially unhinged at that time, not at all normal, and, and.... :/
reenka: (somebody WUVS U)
....If there's one thing the newest trollgate has taught me, it's this: I need to write chan. In fact, we ALL need to write a lot of filthy, filthy chan.


ETA - Stop! Stoooop!! ^^;;;; That's enough chan assignments to last me till Kingdom Come. Or book 7, alternatively. Omg, I'm scared of you guys, but ♥. *waves tiny banner* I may only write some, but... I'll write them all in spirit? Er? The baby!Harry/Lily is just a bit... I mean, the logistics alone...
reenka: (Default)
As a preface I'd like to say that in a way I agree with this post insofar as obviously there is an important difference between fictional and 'real' pedophilia (and likewise a difference between fantasizing and acting on any fantasy, obviously), but once again, I'm frustrated by how quickly and how thickly people jump to drawing the line between fantasy & reality, as if it's always some 12 foot wall of steel and not a fluttering curtain at times.

There's a line between 'fiction/fantasy cannot influence or become reality' and 'fiction/fantasy naturally will and does consistently influence and become reality' where the actual truth lies, and it's a source of continuous frustration to me that people are so stubbornly binary-thinking about this. :/ I guess it doesn't make a good rallying cry to say 'well, sometimes the right fantasy will affect the right person in such a way that they could catalyze it to become reality, but most times it (probably) won't, but either way it would have happened sooner or later with another form of that fantasy, so you can't really stop it'. :> A good example of this last point is how exposure to kink in fandom has led me in particular to become a lot more laid-back and accepting of my own kinkiness levels in real life. I don't really go out and 'do it', but... neither am I opposed to some of the things slash porn has brought home to me. :P In general, I wouldn't say I write porn I consider... well, non-hot, you know? Heh.

I mean duh, yeah, fiction != reality, the Easter bunny isn't real and the sky is blue, but on another level, what kind of paucity of imagination does this imply in people? This is empirical materialism at its most droll. Meh. :/ Even more frustrating when spoken by writers themselves. The opposite end of the spectrum is of course the faithful fanatic extremists, the ones who think that thoughts are dangerous and the heretics must be BURNED before they, you know, COME FOR US ALL. *eyeroll*

Eeep, philosophy rampage time. -.- )
reenka: (Default)
I just finished reading 'The Music of Razors' by Cameron Rogers, and I'm not sure whether to be glad or vaguely scandalized that I'm so disturbed and touched and... possessed by it. For good or ill, there's nothing in the next HP book that's likely to affect me like this, because in the end while I love the HP characters, I never felt this direct, painfully vivid identification, this sort of... emotional reflection with them. Reading all those fun fantasy thrillers where the pages keep turning and nothing really matters that much beyond entertainment, I forgot just how deeply scarred and haunted I can be by a piece of writing.

The thing is, I have a love-hate relationship with that sort of thing. I really don't like having my emotional toes stepped on, having my heart wrung out, but at the same time I guess if things ended blandly or in a truly reassuring fashion, then it wouldn't haunt me like this, wouldn't seem so powerful or memorable. Just like Suni (a character in the book) says, it's the pain, the loss that we remember; all the losses and fears that make up the core of our identities.

There are larger themes in the book, more mythological aspects about angels and demons and other worlds, but the thing that really matters are the bits that are just about Hope and Suni, two really confused teenagers on the brink of touching-- something (themselves? each other?) but being held back, unable to go forward but also not quite able to leave the past behind, except that sometimes the past leaves you, and there's nothing you can do about it except survive the pain and move on. Just survive, and change if you can, roll with the punches. Any time I read about that in a powerful fashion in fiction, it's like a fist to the gut.

And in the end, the bittersweetness and the pure bitterness of that holding back-- of Suni being unable to break through to the other side, of being betrayed by his dreams even as he (sort of) transcends them if not achieves them-- that is more painful to me than any character death, somehow. The way love can hurt you, not through leaving you or breaking you, but by merely not being enough of the right thing at the right time, or by giving you the wrong thing at the right time. The most painful thing is someone you love meaning well, so painfully well, even as they destroy you, and you can't even blame them.

Supposedly there's a chance for a sequel where we find out the ultimate 'fates of the characters', so that some of this horrid hollowness of lost or twisted potentials could be changed or filled, but by the time I read it (if ever) this ache would be a distant memory, so it doesn't really matter. The worst thing that could happen to a character you care about, though, is definitely not death-- 'The Music of Razors' shows that beyond the shadow of a doubt. That's why I said that about book 7 not really having the same potential for impact, 'cause even if at worst Harry dies to save his friends, there's no way that'd hurt me as much as what Hope did to Suni, who loved her, whom she loved, all without anyone to blame, really. All without a real choice made, even.
    To deeply maim-- to destroy-- what you love without even being conscious of the meaning of the act, while hoping to do good in some twisted way-- is there anything more intrinsically horrific??! It's like Maya's fic where Harry keeps Draco as a mindless 'perfect boyfriend' who had to do everything Harry wanted, except like, a gadzillion times worse in its utter spareness and the good intentions and Suni's remaining awareness/sanity, and.... :/

But I don't regret having read the book, the way one doesn't regret loving a person who hurt you. There some deeply wise things in there about the uses of fear, the necessity of our wounds, the price of love, the things that make us feel alive.


May. 30th, 2007 04:37 am
reenka: (YAAARRRR)
Okay, so May 31st is apparently the last day to preregister for the Yaoi-Con in October (for $40), and since I decided I'm going to the Prophecy HP con this August after all, umm, suddenly I'm all 'hmmm, Yaoi-Con... *strokes chin*'.

But. The reason I've never gone before (besides it being on the other side of the country-- in San Fran-- before) was basically 'cause no one I knew was going. Wah. I didn't want to go cross country to basically hang out with a whole bunch of people who only have 'bishie love' in common with me ^^;; I mean, seriously, there's just something a leeeetle disturbing about the whole bishie fixation both in shoujo & yaoi fandom, not that it's surprising or anything (but I guess every fandom has a bishie fixation, though at least they don't call John or Rodney-- or god help me, Snape-- bishies). But that's neither here nor there. ^^;;


I'll totally sign up if someone-- anyone??-- I know wants to go too. Wah? It sounds fun. It's in San Fran. And apparently there's a bishie auction involved. *facepalm* Any excuse to take the bus down to Frisco, really :D

Anyone? Anyone? ...Bueller?

Also, I just thought it's weird how I really enjoy getting to know the authors of fanfics I like & yet have a sort of puritanical desire for distance yet also a morbid curiosity about the up and coming new fantasy authors I like. What with everyone and their brother having either an lj or a website, it's getting a little too easy to know a little too much, though. I dunno, it's just... it's not that I don't want to know anything, it's that I don't want to feel like they're just another person, just a shmuck like me, y'know. Then, somehow, I wonder if I should still be paying money for their books, I guess. Like, mixing money/fannishness & a casual online acquaintance just seems... weird/wacky/wrong.

Which is why I can't seem to want to read the books my online friends wrote :/ Eeep. Or even the friends of my online friends, ahahaha. It all feels a bit too incestuous somehow. I dunno. Sort of weird since it's totally different with fanfic or... free online fic in general, mostly 'cause I just... relate to online fic differently. It may be just as good as published fic or published fic may be just as bad, but the point is that I relate to them differently when they come with shiny covers & $6.99 stickers on them. But if I know the author as 'that person from lj', suddenly... I feel I'm doing them a personal favor by buying the book, and also my expectations lower and suddenly I feel like I'm about to go through the slush pile even if it looks good just from a read-through.

Funky baseless biases, I know, but hard as hell to escape; the fact is that I'm really glad JKR isn't around to answer every random question about the books or complain about some random thing on her hypothetical lj. Or rather, I'm glad she's really careful with what & how she answers. I wish all new fantasy authors were as careful and didn't just indulge their fans as much as they possibly can without blatantly giving away plot points. :/ Really, I think JKR says too much also (Ginny the 'Perfect Girl', anyone??), but compared to the majority of authors I've seen who interact with fans actively, she's a model of saintly restraint. Scary, really. ^^; All I can say is that if & when I ever sell a book, you won't hear about it here :)) The temptation to go on and on about my characters, to argue with people who got it wrong, to ramble about my inspirations until the luster totally fades... man, I know I'd feel it too. Abstinence is the answer, methinks (though not really 'cause the very word 'abstinence' sends shudders of horror down my spine... not to say I don't abstain from things, but goddammit not on purpose!! or... something!!!). That or a Mysterious Authorly Persona (tm).

All this to say I should really stay away from the urban fantasy comms, I guess, though I know well enough that I can't stop looking at the newer authors' websites out of that same morbid curiosity. Well, but there's still a sense of distance with websites. It all goes downhill once they start cracking jokes in comments & commenting on their own work. That's really what does it-- it's the commenting/pimping their work. Sort of eyerolly in fandom, but sort of "......." when there's money involved, I guess, haha.
reenka: (Default)
I've actually been following the FanLib thing with a mix of interest and a sort of disgusted horror, but until now nothing's really struck me strongly enough to wade in. At least, I don't want to think about fandom's doom, y'know? I really don't like the whole idea of doom; it puts me off my supper, so I try to steer clear of any discussion that sort of skirts by the concept.

Anyway, it's funny... while I agree with the nobler sentiment (if not the phrasing) of posts like this, and they also make me feel a bit guilty in the way my old philosophy professor made me feel guilty about using 'feminist' to describe myself rather than 'humanist'-- besides that, posts like that make me want to play the gender bias card. Which. :/ I never like wanting to. :/ It's funny how disregarding/fighting against gender bias winds up appearing like gender bias, doesn't it? Or perhaps acting feminist in itself is inevitably a form of 'gender bias', but in the end we do it 'cause we have to, because society's bias leans off-center in the first place, so it needs a somewhat exaggerated counterbalance.

I wonder if you can be a feminist with confused/fuzzy/progressive ideas about gender, since umm, 'feminist' assumes you know what you're referring to in regards to 'women' (as in, 'women's rights'). As in, how much do you define femininity by defining the issues covered by feminism, for instance? And how can you be feminist at all if you're equally appalled with traditional boys=blue/girls=pink philosophy & with the following segregation and societal pigeonholing but also with 'gender-blindness' where everything to do with socially/biologically driven gender roles is malleable and therefore the subject becomes irrelevant or 'unprogressive'. But anyway, that's a tangent.

    I've seen a lot of media coverage at large about the slowly shifting cultural conceptions of gender, and yet at the same time all I see is more of the same stuff dressed up differently, which just makes me into more of angry feminist than I like being. I see people (notice I didn't say 'men', haha) with the right ideas, but at the same time the lack of real empathy is something that worsens and widens the gap. We may be looking at the same big picture, but we're not really in the same space, if that makes sense.

I think the reason 'fanfic fandom' is a mainly 'female space' is because fanfic is heavily dominated by shipper or romance fic. Now, I say this as someone who used to write hardcore slash fanfic with her open-minded, gender-progressive ex-boyfriend as her main sounding board and guaranteed audience, so I know all about writing for 'people' and not 'other women'-- but at the same time, that experience enables me to tell you that yes, there's a difference in writing for women compared to men or 'people', and while I 'just write', the point is that who we are determines both how and what we write and read about.

blah-blah-gender-rambles-in-fandom-blah. )

We cannot try to understand and bridge our differences if we don't acknowledge our differences; likewise, we cannot share space if our separate spaces aren't acknowledged and respected first. That is what the people who dislike that first step of respect as alienating or separatist don't get-- that without this initial understanding of the degrees of separation, there can be no true union.
reenka: (a little obsessed?)
I wonder if it's possible to write H/D fic I'd read on a bad day (ie, a total and unavoidable ennui day-- pretty much every day currently) without feeling the way I do/did about the pairing. Like, I wonder if how you feel about love, the characters, canon-- how much all that Authorial Intent stuff matters insofar as it inevitably reflects itself in the manner of the writing (as I believe it does). I wonder if I'd ever read any fics I truly loved without them being written by someone either a) in love with passionate, insane, you-and-no-other-even-if-you're-not-so-good-either love or b) in love with H/D to the total exclusion of any other pairing (though perhaps a few runner ups that certainly didn't involve either Harry or Draco).

I have no patience even to give H/D fics a chance anymore, honestly though, no matter who writes them. I just feel a little less guilty about it if I see the person writes primarily non-H/D, hahaha. I say this because I actually started a random fic today just to write something, and inevitably it was a Draco-pov H/D fic-- post-Hogwarts, no less. As usual, if I write it myself, it's nowhere near as boring/stupid/annoying to me, hahah. Also, Draco the mobile salesman-- had to be done. ♥. :D

Anyway, I do wonder. I think this is partly an unanswerable, philosophical question, but at the same time it's not meant as rhetorical. I always felt like H/D encapsulated the sort of relationship (in my mind) that you can't be casual about. You can't be a swinger and really get H/D; not unless you're the kind of swinger that only really craves one person like a drug but either likes denial or totally separates sex & love, haha. You can't be polyamorous and get H/D, on a gut level I mean. You can't even be a non-romantic, in some ways, and really get some aspects of H/D (not to say it's a shmooshy sort of romance like James & Lily or even Sirius & Remus, but it's high romance ideally, if only the sort that breaks bones & takes no prisoners even as it rolls its eyes at itself). As an interesting corollary, I don't think you can fully get H/D being naive or... entirely nice, either; it'd help to have some burning heartbreak and rage under the belt, that's for sure. I mean, I like my H/D realistic and hardcore, even unsentimental, but the thing is that if you write it honestly, the romance and sentiment will shine through clearer. That's my philosophy: imitate life/truth, and the situational pecularities will shine through naturally; or in other words, the point of faithful representation is that it shows without telling.

...mer. )

As far as what I've been up to-- I've been reading urban fantasy & being glad there are no fandoms for those books that I (want to) know of :>
reenka: (a little obsessed?)
I just randomly saw this image in a manga that had nothing to do with the character ('Maigo' by Homerun Ken), but my Draco senses started tingling immediately, hehe. I'll always have such a soft spot for bratty Death Eater's son super-wizard!Draco. Awww. *____*

...possibly, yes, I need to get out more. What.

Presenting: 'Mr Fru-fru Magician', by Homerun Ken. :D )
reenka: (somebody WUVS U)
Sometimes-- most times, lately, I admit-- I forget what drew me to HP so fervently, dorkily, passionately and truly, etcetc-- and then... then, of course, someone (saaay, [ profile] otakupink) scanlates another cracked out PoA gen+H/D doujinshi (saaay, 'Heavy Fucker'), and all the world is right again. Ahh yes, that's the spot... *hip-pump*

Heavy Fucker - PoA!H/D crack!dj - Harry goes native, Draco is simply -appalled- and quite oppressed, and Lupin... Lupin wouldn't say no to another pint. Or a threesome, btw. )

...All in all, this is my H/D, pretty much. *siiiigh*
reenka: (Default)
Okay, so reading this really stupid gag incest strip made me think that, y'know (that specific context aside), for a lot of girls it's not that unusual to either accept or fantasize about themselves as natural 'bottoms' or 'receivers' or... what have you. Even if it's supposedly 'not okay' from a feminist or 'modern woman' pov, obviously a lot of women still have a kink about the Alpha/dominant male, basically. And I can actually empathize with that insofar as I like (fictional) bastards, somewhat on the Alpha side. It's just....

blah. )
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