anindigomind: screenshot of true-form Midna from Hyrule Warriors (Default)
 SHOCK. I finished another anime, entirely in one week! My Hero Academia. I clicked 'play' because I've been feeling creatively drained since I finished a short story a week or so ago, and in the past consuming stories did the trick. and Heroaca? Has a dub. That helped immensely - my bad brain didn't have to focus on the words, I could look away from the screen and do other things while I watched. I've lost my knack for following japanese without subtitles. Anyho, Heroaca is just plain fun with an armature of real emotional beats. Shounen has perfected the optimistic hero by making him doubt, and it's nice to see the no-nonsense pacing of Attack on Titan applied to something with a more solid story.  Heroaca is also the closest I've seen any Shounen anime come to directly addressing disability as a main theme. I got sucked in immediately, and the first season flew by. I think I'll wait for the dub of season two to be out on hulu before I continue, though I'd love to jump in. I should only have to wait about a month though?

I'd like to watch another anime, but the combo of new, short, and dubbed seems to be pretty rare.

Lately I've been coming to terms with the need to downsize. It's hard to imagine downsizing enough to actually matter, but it still needs to be done. This week I ended up doing a bit of organization in my closet, which is where all my books are. It's a surprisingly soothing place, because it's cool-ish, dark, and smells of books. There was something lifting about pulling out books, with the knowledge that while they may be good books I'm not going to reread them and I don't need to carry them with me. To literally set aside the weight of them, and narrow down to what serves me, what matters to me. There are some that will be harder - I've a new complete set of Redwall books that I don't need, but Redwall is nestled close to my heart from long warm summers tinged with smoke. A safe place were things work out no matter how dark it got, full of food. The shelves of manga; and worse - the books unread. They are things of potential, that could hold life-shaking revelations. My next favorite could be hidden there, but wow there are so many unread. I wish I'd caught on sooner that I was struggling with reading. Some books though, I think I have homes for them.

In there I did end up reading Carol Bly's Letters from the Country. It's... bizarrely timely, with it's calls for impeaching a corrupt president and standing up for art and education and not holding back; and wow nothing has changed in 50-odd years. Rural Minnesota has all the same unpleasant traits it did then. It's a bit vindicating that no, I'm really not imagining how awful bits of this are.

I've been keeping on eye on the larger weather picture, as I do. I do miss having the weather channels to keep a constant feed in the background of my life. In other news, guess who just happens to be headed to Texas in a couple days, for completely non-weather reasons? Mmmhmmmm. No dogs on this roadtrip sadly. I wish I could take Chai, I'll miss him - I worry about my old boy. It's gonna be a long couple of weeks.
anindigomind: screenshot of true-form Midna from Hyrule Warriors (Default)
It's a lovely, soft rainy day. I slept well enough - still having trouble accepting that I do need to go to bed at night. Having responsibilities sucks. I want to stay up all night reading and let someone else handle the mornings. Lately it's felt like all the thoughts are happening in my brain all at once and it's hard to focus on just one to get it out.

I received Down Among The Sticks And Bones on Friday, and I'm so excited. Every Heart A Doorway is... everything. DAtSaB doesn't have to be everything, it just being is enough. But I'm putting off reading it a bit, because I want to clean out my brain some. I also found my misplaced copy of Steering The Craft, which is one of those truly great books on writing. Which is... I've hit this point, where a lot of writing advice just isn't helpful. I may not have gone anywhere career-wise, but in writing theory it feels like I'm well beyond that entry level journeyman advice. So things like Steering the Craft, Get To Work Hurley, Wonderbook, and the occasional twitter thread are precious. You know now that I write that I see how it times in - how the need for more higher level craft insights has driven me to meta, lore, and analysis. The ruthless breaking down of stories, laser focused cause and effect. And let me tell you, Dark Souls and it's relatives are a GOLDMINE for that. I could speculate that it had something to do with how we have to dig for basically ALL the story in the Souls games, but nah.

So yeah, it goes like this: long form Dark Souls lore/analysis videos are great to play to fall asleep - yo Bloodborne is just as good/even better! - ongoing Themes of cosmic horror in my life(if Cthulhu himself arose out of the lake I'd be like 'sure fine it's just another Tuesday around here') - tumblr memes - oh hey this one book is really awesome(EVERYONE READ WINTER TIDE OKAY?!) - I kinda want to write in this vein - ...might as well read Lovecraft now.

I haven't actually, not in any focused way, and I've just been in that mood for awhile so why not? His stuff is fairly short and readable surprisingly. I think there might be a lesson in there, about about how his mythos as he wrote it wasn't that well suited to longer forms, as well as how to craft short stories. And I mean, he was so good at harnessing readers' imaginations that his works seem so much more then they actually are? (Hardly anyone talks about the craft aspect, which is interesting. And well, standard disclaimer here about how he was an actual trainwreck, but that's not what I'm here for today.) (I read something recently about how he encouraged others to take his mythos and run? There are conflicting reports, but I am Intrigued.)

The thing about actually reading Lovecraft's stories is while I am aware that the narrative is pushing me to be repulsed, disgusted, etc, what I actually feel for the characters is sympathy. To use The Dunwich Horror as an example, since it's the freshest in my mind - I can't find it in myself to be unsettled by a disabled woman and her eccentric farmer father? or the woman's heavily autistic-coded son? Ultimately the 'spooky/scary other' falls completely flat for me, doing so so much as to upset the entire tea cart of the story. It's a bit of a quirk of the writing style, that the bigotry can be attributed wholly to the narrator(something that is not helped, confusingly enough, by the Wilbur being a self insert. wtf lovecraft.) 

The result of ignoring the narrator's opinions is it then reads as a tragedy of the complications of raising half-human children, and of not fitting the social mold. Our only solid source of for the Whateleys' motivations is the questionable translations of a child's diary. Looking at it that way makes monsters of the stuffy old white men of academia that we're being fed as the heroes. It's kind of amazing that it can so easily be read that way, and explains some of the longevity of Lovecraft's mythos. It's an interesting exercise in itself to view the story through both the lens of the author, and on its own. Death of the author and all that. 

I'm not sure if I got out all my thoughts about this. It's taken a long time to write this entry, due to my brain just being a bad brain in general. I feel like my knowledge and understanding of this whole subject is much less sophisticated then it could be. Here is a link to The Dunwich Horror, in case one might want to read it for themselves.

Addendum: thoughts on the Call of Cthulhu. My audiobook tells me that I've been pronouncing R'lyeh wrong this entire time(audio, btw, is an excellent format for these stories.) My original above thoughts stand, about perspective and how Lovecraft's stories are like prisms, and you can get something totally different with how you turn it. It was a bit amusing that it seemed like he was deliberately padding for wordcount by repeating plot points over and over again, and I got the impression that he didn't really know meanings of all of the big words he used - I wonder how many readers do? "an angle which was acute, but behaved as if it were obtuse." is still objectively hilarious.

Sort of confluence of all this is a story idea, something I'm pondering for an attempt at July's Camp Nano. It's definitely more of a gothic story, the cosmic horror stuff got mushed in there because *gestures upwards* I don't brain good in the summer though, and camp nanos have never gone well for me, on top of potential business, so we'll see if it happens.

8tracks playlist of the week - sounds nice in stormy weather and "It was so dark that it was even hard to hear"
anindigomind: screenshot of true-form Midna from Hyrule Warriors (Default)
The air outside was warm today. It smells of rain and sap, the verge of summer. Woke earlier to the hum of a mower and drifted in sleep for a few hours, until ups delivered our new tv - the old one, the one I got from a friend, finally decided to die properly by adopting a strobe effect. The new one is fancy - super thin and it even does wifi. Hope it's worth the work.

Had black bean spaghetti with tilapia for dinner, with a salad and cinnamon tea. It was sufficiently spooky looking that I pretty much had to read Winter Tide over dinner. That book sucked me right back in. It's all that I love about Lovecraft's worlds without the racist or sexist parts. My only disappointment is that it briefly waved a hint of one of my favorite tropes under my nose then pulled it away, but then that's on me for jumping on it.

doesn't feel like only Friday. I miss having more structure.
anindigomind: screenshot of true-form Midna from Hyrule Warriors (Default)
This year I decided I’d make an effort with whittling down my TBR pile, and if you’re going to do that why not start with authors you enjoy? Especially since I actually have all my books in one place for one. (Nothing like having books 1, 2, 3, and 5 in a series.)

Anyway, getting to my point - did Late Eclipses just drag for anyone else? I have a hard time telling if it’s the book or my brain, and like it’s not a bad book at all. The hook is good, but I kept losing interest because it just took forever to get around to resolution and all that came in between felt pretty meaningless and... filler-y. The answers to the mysteries seemed really obvious to me and that just leached out the tension. The main character is confused and annoyed at all the people shuffling her back and forth and trying to murder her and I felt the same, and really all that kept me reading is the desire to get further into the series. Like three - four? - people only wanted to kill Toby because they have poor understandings of causation? Because it was convenient to throw a roadblock into the plot? idk.

Seanan's such a good writer I feel yucky about not 100% liking one of her books, even though I know that's silly.


anindigomind: screenshot of true-form Midna from Hyrule Warriors (Default)
Jean T

September 2017



RSS Atom

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sep. 24th, 2017 11:00 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios