Art-curly white tree

sholio

Arctic Light

sailing to the edge of the world


Art-curly white tree
sholio

(no subject)

The question meme I posted last night is open for questions again if you wanna!

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Cave painting-Hands
sholio

Meeeeeeeme

Fanfic meme I've seen floating around in various forms at several people's journals. Give me a letter(s) and I'll answer! (Most of my fic is here on AO3; the Stargate stuff is here.)

Questions under the cutCollapse )

Closing the meme now because I'm going to bed! No more letters, please, but you're still welcome to comment on my answers/ask questions about them.

You may have noticed me doing this lately (closing memes when I get tired) and I'll probably be doing it a lot more, because I've realized that a big reason why I largely stopped doing these question memes is because they became such a time-suck for me, so now I'm just taking meme questions when I'm actively feeling social, and closing them once I'm done. However, comments on my existing comments are always welcome. :)


Meme is open again - ask away!

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Art-curly white tree
sholio

"Hulk rules"

My sister innocently sent me an email asking, "Do you remember the Hulk rules for Ambush? Because I don't think we wrote them down."

I do indeed, and after I stopped laughing, I typed them up for her, and then decided to tell the whole story on Livejournal. Basically it's the story of how my sister and I hacked a WWII board game into first a Stargate game and then an Avengers game.

For people -- mostly guys -- of a certain (my dad's) age, military board games were a big deal. I think this has probably given way to computer games now, but in the '70s and '80s these things were pretty huge, and my dad was really into them. The games come with a map, combat rules, lots of different counters representing soldiers, equipment, weapons, etc, and you design different strategies and put them through combat and see how much of your army survives. Most of the ones he liked to play were WWII-related, though he also had some Napoleonic Wars and medieval ones.

When my sister and I were little, we used to enjoy watching him play the games and "helping" by rolling dice and so forth. Our favorite of the games by far -- which meant that we ended up spending hours and hours and HOURS playing it with him -- was a WWII game called Ambush!, because of the roleplaying-game aspect, although neither of us had encountered RPGs yet. You create characters, name them, roll up different skills for them, and then use a game book of predetermined enemy movements to put your characters through a series of missions, competing against spontaneously generated enemy combatants who move/attack according to the game book. Your characters gain experience points during the mission, so you can put them through the entire war if you want to, or at least as much of it as is provided in the expansion modules.

You can probably see where this is goingCollapse )

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Art-curly white tree
sholio

That Wednesday reading meme

This is not actually what I'm reading right now, but I was in Barnes & Noble yesterday and happened to notice the latest (I assume the latest) of Lee Child's Jack Reacher books on a bargain table. As noted in a previous post, I stopped reading the series due to skepticism that Oh, this is all spoilery, I may as well put it under a cut if anyone caresCollapse )

What I'm actually reading is Gaudy Night by Dorothy Sayers. I've never read any of her books, but Gaudy Night is the one that tends to be mentioned by a lot of people as their favorite of hers (if not their favorite book ever, sometimes) so I decided that would be a good place to start. So far, I'm enjoying it a lot -- I'm about 200 pages in -- and not feeling too lost jumping into the middle of a series, though I'd gotten the impression from what vague spoilers I've picked up along the way that this is the first book in which Harriet appears, which is obviously not the case. However, it's lots of fun so far!

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Avengers-Steve rain
sholio

Captain America fic recs

I fiiiiiinally wrote up some actual recs. These are cherry-picked from my AO3 bookmarks - only a small fraction of the fics I've read and enjoyed in the fandom (so much good fic!) but it's a start. Obviously this is weighted very heavily towards the characters/pairings/tropes that I prefer, and minus the handful I've already rec'd in their own posts. Spoilers for Captain America 2 in pretty much all of these; some include Agents of Shield spoilers.

7 gen recs, 4 Steve/Bucky, 4 other pairings, 2 that can best be categorized as 'ow'Collapse )

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Art-curly white tree
sholio

More Kismet stuff

When I (re)launch Kismet, I'm also going to launch a funding page on patreon.com, which is basically a crowdfunding platform that allows people to pledge/pay a certain small amount that's either due monthly or per work funded; mine would be monthly.

I want to make it clear that I do NOT expect people to pay to read the comic, or feel guilty if they can't/don't want to. Kismet will always be online for free. Actually, one of the things I'm struggling with, as I set up my funding donation levels, is rewarding people for paying me while not setting up a tiered hierarchy of readers, with an inner circle of paying readers and an outer circle of free ones. I don't want that! I want everyone to be able to enjoy the comic while also paying if, and ONLY if, they can afford it and want to, and not feel like they're missing out on some sort of inner circle of preferred readers if they can't or don't want to pay.

I'd love some input on setting up my funding levels, though.

Right now I have it set up like this:

Cutting the rest of it because there's no need to clog everyone's reading listCollapse )

Thoughts?

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Infinite Squee
sholio

Kismet stuff

In the run-up to restarting Kismet: Sun-Cutter on Sept. 1, I've been posting character bios and bits of information to the Kismet tumblr. Most of this is getting reblogged over to my regular tumblr as well. Here's what I have thus far.

Worldbuilding stuff
Tertia and Secuba history
Fake memories

Character mini-bios (so far)
Shelley Fleetwood
Jackie Lobo
Signy 12
Linton 95
Elaine Jagir
Colette Novak
Judas Hawkins
Leslie Fleetwood

For my own reference - characters who still need bios, and things I want to write mini-articles on, like the two above.

Under a cutCollapse )

Anything else you're curious about? What sort of information might intrigue you enough to start reading a new-to-you webcomic?

(This is also x-posted to my tragically neglected real-name journal; apologies to people who are following me in both places and getting double-posted at.)

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Books
sholio

(no subject)

Books I am currently reading: Double Cross: The True Story of the D-Day Spies by Ben Macintyre. Spies + history = catnip for me anyway, but it's very engagingly written and I'm really enjoying it.

Popular image of spying: glamorous, competent people sipping martinis and seducing sexy enemy agents.

Actual spying: an equal blend of bureaucracy and crazy people.

At some point I need to transcribe or scan the book's section(s) on pigeons, because the pigeon stuff is AMAZING. It involves MI5 agent Richard Melville Walker ("He adored pigeons. He lived for pigeons. His reports were long, cooing poems of love.") who was convinced that Germany was going to smuggle intelligence out of the country with homing pigeons, despite the total lack of evidence for this, and deployed a series of anti-pigeon countermeasures, such as a brigade of trained falcons that only managed to succeed in taking down British pigeons ("friendly fire," the book comments dryly) and attempted pigeon double agents that quietly went native in French pigeon coops. A few choice bits are quoted here.

The "what happened to everyone after the war" chapter includes the following for Gustav the pigeon, who carried invasion news from the Normandy beach front and is the only war pigeon named in the book:

Gustav died soon after the war when his breeder trod on him while mucking out his loft.


Apparently Gustav was also awarded the Dickin Medal, the UK's distinguished service award for animals.

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Avatar-upbeat attitude
sholio

*screams quietly into pillow*

After ALL THOSE MONTHS that I spent trying to figure out how to get my webcomics set up in Wordpress, fighting with it and spending hours and hours trying to get it to look/act like I want .... I've given up on it and just gone back to using static pages with handwritten HTML and CSS. And I am so much happier. Also, it means that after one day of code-tweaking and contemplating my site's organization, I am ready to roll on webcomic updating.

I also think it's interesting how much more fun for me it is to write and troubleshoot my own pages than to try to figure out someone else's. Last night I was beating my head against Wordpress and was absolutely miserable, but I spent something like 6 hours today fiddling with my own CSS (mostly making my site mobile-friendly and figuring out how to integrate Disqus into the comic pages) and had fun. I am also kind of blown away at how user-friendly Disqus is. It took me ages to figure out why I couldn't get it to work (and I still don't know for sure, but it had to have been some kind of permission or formatting on my html document itself, because I finally fixed it by copy-pasting everything into a brand new index.html) but when THAT'S not an issue, it just works seamlessly -- you copy-paste a little piece of javascript and it does everything else for you. (Which probably means that it could stop working at any time, but it beats the insecurity/hassle of trying to write and maintain my own comment system.)

So basically, after an entire summer of uncertainty about how my updating was going to work ... I am back to doing it the same way I've done it for a decade. /facepalm

The one thing I don't have an easy way to do is automated updates. I still have to edit and upload each new page by hand. I was thinking I might be able to get around that by uploading a bunch of ready-to-go pages to a hidden folder somewhere on the server and writing a little script to move them into the main directory when they're ready to go live. That's not urgent, though.

... well, that or learn enough PHP to write my own updater/page generator, I guess.

I'm thrilled to have gotten this far, though, because "how and where do I update the webcomic" is a HUGE item off my webcomic relaunch to-do list.

(I should point out that I am in NO WAY professional quality at web design stuff, but I am adequate enough to maintain my own pages in a way I'm happy with, and that's all that really matters to me!)

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Avengers-Steve rain
sholio

New fanfics for Marvel-POC fic exchange

The [community profile] marvel_poc fic exchange went live today, and I ended up writing three stories for it, because I picked up not just one but two pinch hits. Also, I totally used slhuang's idea about writing Nick Fury's internal SHIELD reports. (And had SO MUCH FUN with it.) And I got two more squares on my h/c bingo card.

I'll just use AO3's handy link code feature to link to them over there, though you can comment here if you would like to!

From the Desk of N. Fury (2000 words) by Sholio
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: The Avengers (Marvel Movies), Marvel Cinematic Universe
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Nick Fury, Original Characters
Additional Tags: Bureaucracy, Epistolary, nick fury regrets his life choices
Summary: Nicholas J. Fury vs. SHIELD bureaucracy.

A Place to Lie Low (5717 words) by Sholio
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: The Avengers (Marvel Movies), Marvel Cinematic Universe, Captain America (Movies)
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Sam Wilson (Marvel), Nick Fury, Jasper Sitwell
Additional Tags: Action/Adventure, Mission Fic, Hurt/Comfort, Uneasy Allies, Rescue, natasha cameo, steve cameo, not!hydra!Sitwell
Summary: Two separate Hydra-hunting missions converge, and Nick Fury and Sitwell end up getting Sam out of a tight spot. Looks like they're all going the same way for a while.
Also fills "hiding an injury/illness" for my h/c bingo card.

The Art of Missing the Ground (8980 words) by Sholio
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Captain America (Movies), The Avengers (Marvel Movies), Marvel Cinematic Universe
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Steve Rogers/Sam Wilson
Characters: Sam Wilson (Marvel), Steve Rogers, Bruce Banner, Tony Stark, James "Bucky" Barnes
Additional Tags: Wingfic, Mutation, Mad Science, Hurt/Comfort, Friends to Lovers, First Kiss
Summary: An accident in the field gives Sam sudden!surprise!wings. Also fills my h/c bingo "Mutation" square.

I also got a great gift fic - Fight to Leave the Past Behind by [archiveofourown.org profile] ilostmyshoe - a gorgeous Sam character study that deals with his postwar trauma and delicately touches on the events of CA:TWS from Sam's point of view, with an occasional little heartstab here and there. Recommended!

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