lotesse: (Default)
... I am so frustrated by the fact that the Vorkosiverse keeps giving more babies in number, when what I want is more babies in *content* - don't add any more of the dratted things, there are already plenty, just give me a real sense of what the "next generation" are like as parents! Or - Gentleman Jole spoiler )
lotesse: (Default)
I'm trying not to put too much symbolic weight on this new year; I want to, but I'm not quite ready to declare the new beginning, not just yet. If I pay too much attention to the passage of time, it feels like it's slipping away from me, but I'm not ready to stop letting it go.

For yuletide, I wrote:

The marriage plot (2403 words) by lotesse
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Vorkosigan Saga - Lois McMaster Bujold
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Ekaterin Vorsoisson Vorkosigan/Miles Vorkosigan, Aral Vorkosigan/Cordelia Naismith Vorkosigan, Georg Vorthys/Helen Vorthys
Characters: Cordelia Naismith Vorkosigan, Helen Vorthys, Aral Vorkosigan, Ekaterin Vorsoisson Vorkosigan
Additional Tags: Marriage, Awkward Conversations, Feminist Themes
Summary: “And so I suppose they'll be married,” Helen said, sitting down in the antechamber of Aral and Cordelia's suite with a sigh and toeing off her shoes.

(it was hard to do, a bit; everything I want to write comes out so intense and personal atm that I have to do a lot of facing-up to myself. I wanted to recognize and affirm all the concerns that y'all have articulated about the speed of Miles and Ekaterin's marriage, but also to honor the very real way the ship helped me personally. Reading Komarr while I was still with my Ex was like a blow and a promise all at once: the blow of recognition, but also the promise that if I could just get away from my own Tien, love like Miles' would potentially become available to me.)

I was gifted with two more Vorkosigan Saga fics, both about Ekaterin, which was great fun:

Night, Vorkosigan House (2069 words) by kalirush
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Vorkosigan Saga - Lois McMaster Bujold
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Aral Vorkosigan, Ekaterin Vorsoisson Vorkosigan
Additional Tags: Awkward Conversations, Babies, Explosions
Summary: Ekaterin and Aral have a late night conversation, with babies.

Lady Vorkosigan's Manor (888 words) by mayachain
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Vorkosigan Saga - Lois McMaster Bujold
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Ekaterin Vorsoisson Vorkosigan/Miles Vorkosigan, Aral Vorkosigan/Cordelia Naismith Vorkosigan
Characters: Ekaterin Vorsoisson Vorkosigan, Aral Vorkosigan
Additional Tags: Interior Decorating, In-Laws, POV Female Character, Politics
Summary: After the new Lady Vorkosigan's redecorations, Vorkosigan House has a green silk room.

thank you again to both of my gift-makers!
lotesse: (curioser)
two questions about the Vorkosigan Saga:

1. how does swearing someone work in terms of the armsmans' score/Vorloupulous' law? When Miles swears Arde and Baz in - when Mark swears Elena - do those count as additions to the number of Vorkosigan Armsmen? Because neither boy acts as though a slot needs to be open before a swearing can happen, on penalty of high treason. Is there a textual explanation, or is it a crack in the narrative?

2. Why, when Bujold so obviously understands why aspects of Miles' courtship of Ekaterin are really borderline in terms of acceptable behavior, does she choose to have the story go down that way? There are all of these words about how Ekaterin needs some time, some confidence, some space - Bujold clearly does get it, at some level. Does she just not care? Why was it necessary for her to write the story about Miles pushing Ekaterin's consent and disrespecting her boundaries and still getting her to marry him in the end?

It would have been really cool if it had gone the other way, actually been a healthy and functional romance all the time, instead of just some of the time.
lotesse: (Default)
Had a fight this morning with my Mormon friend, who for whatever reason saw fit to break our usual detente with a bunch of crap pro-violence pro-war bullshit; I ended up yelling and hanging up on him, but it's kept bothering me. I hate having to know that people I like - well, I guess that's what comes into question, isn't it? if they really are people that I can like. G. repeatedly described himself this morning as "pro-imperialism," and I sort of think you can't come back from that. He doesn't get it from nowhere - like Orson Scott Card, my friend did mission work in Brazil, and however much they dress it up as charity or whatever the Mormon missionary scene is totally imperialism in practice. And, no matter the polygamy bans, the Mormons are really patriarchal, moreso than I think people understand. This is the religion that makes eighteen-year-old white boys "priests" with all these "spiritual powers." See the recent excommunication of Kate Kelly for Mormon patriarchalism in action.

but we're getting old enough that this shit is no longer cute.

It's always creeped me out a bit that my family contacts with Mormons have been so gendered: we've got G. and an older friend of his, a painter like my mama, and the both of them do this man-about-town skirt-the-rules thing where they drink cocktails and mama's friend paints nudes. Mama and her friend go gallery-hopping in New York, and he's married, but his wife is never with him: he explores the city art scene while she, seemingly, stays home with their children and obeys the laws of their church. It's like the men have the authority to bend the rules, and so can make fun playmates for leftist folks like me and mine - but that actually kind of makes it all worse, because they're not only cult members, they're hypocritical cult members who subject their women to harsh standards that they themselves cannot keep to.

(The OSC link above goes to a fascinating chapter-by-chapter deconstruction of Speaker for the Dead. before reading through it, I'd managed to forget enough of the book to think that I liked it better than Ender's Game,, and had tended to position it as the one thing of Card's that was maybe still worth it. There are now a number of things freaking me out about my own personal relationship with Speaker. I'd managed to miss the implication, as a child, that Novinha and her family are Black, and it's breaking my brain, because on the one hand, I'm not surprised that OSC didn't succeed in getting a message of diversity across - and then on the other I wonder if I wasn't engaging in defensive ignorance, because as the linked decon shows, Ender's interactions with the Ribeiras are fucking horrific if he's the lone white dude on a Black planet. Even as a twelve-year-old, I knew I didn't want to read an interracial romance authored by Card! I kind of wish I didn't have to know now! but then again, erasure and whitewashing are, we know, not cool responses to a text. Gahhhh. In even further "I don't know what to do with this," I was also struck, given the really really central place that Komarr has had in my ability to think through my abuse, with how much Speaker felt similar: I can really see Miles/Ekaterin as a rewriting of Ender/Novinha, even down to the role of the children. idek man.)

(I've been feeling angry and bitter and intense and fighty a lot of late, and idek about that either. are things more shit than usual in the world, or is it just me?)
lotesse: (glamazon)
I was thinking, this morning, as one does, about romantic teleology and Charlotte Brontë. (which as I'm writing about Love's Labour's Lost this week is actually rather odd, but I habitually think about Charlotte, so.) Read more... )
lotesse: (sillycat)
Hooooly hannah y'all I was NOT prepared for Farscape 3.16, wow wow wow, I thought I was trippin' earlier this evening.

(I suspect I'm going to end up staying up late tonight; there's an awful lot of partyish noise outside, perhaps some sort of sporting event? What DID we do before Netflix Watch Instant? Actually, scratch that, I remember life before Netflix Watch Instant; I watched all of BtVS and AtS on Netflix delivery DVDs, rationed out in little 4-episode-a-week mini-binges. NOT fun.)

eta: "I don't wanta be like other people. I don't wanta be like you. I don't wanta stoop that low. Kirk wouldn't stoop that low." What the HELLL show you just HIT ME WITH THAT KIND OF SWEET ISH with no warning or nothing? Like. That's even better than Lois McMaster Bujold's continued "City on the Edge of Forever" ref, "I love you" and "let me help."

God, I love science fiction.
lotesse: (fairytale_apple)
I'm looking for stories, either fic or books, and wondered if y'all could help me. I want stories about the part of loss that happens before death, stories about choosing to be with the dying. But I don't want maudlin death fic, or anything about romantic love reaching beyond death. The only story that I can think of that does this the way I want is [personal profile] sahiya and [personal profile] lightgetsin's Vorkosiverse fic What Passing Bells, with Ivan caring for Miles on his long way down. I love that part of that fic, more than I can say. And there's maybe something of what I'm looking for in the movie Chocolat, with Armande: her grandson, Vianne, knowing that she will be dead soon and being with her in that knowledge.

I'd really appreciate help finding these kinds of stories; I'm feeling in real need of them right now. The death can happen or not happen, but I want stories about the feeling of its inevitability, of the nearness of death, the approach.
lotesse: (vorkosigan_maple)
I've just finished listening to Captain Vorpatril's Alliance, and while I love nothing more in all the world than listening to Lois McMaster Bujold audiobooks - seriously, it's ridiculous, I have a problem, I just keep listening to Komarr over and over again - it gave me the time to pinpoint why I'm not thrilling about Ivan and Tej, and why I have a hard time thinking of CVA as Vorkosiverse canon. Except for the sinking ImpSec part, because that is genius. Appalling, wonderful, eucatastrophic genius.

I love LMB's romances, by and large; Aral/Cordelia, Alys/Simon, and Miles/Ekaterin are a lot of what I keep rereading for. But I can't take much joy in Ivan/Tej; in my initial reaction post, I mentioned the hypersexualization thing, the way the narrator pervs on Tej, and that's not my main issue. That's something bigger, that has to do with Ivan Xav Vorpatril and his two faces.

Ivan plays mediocre; this is something established in many of the books. Ivan also plays disinterested/disengaged, as seen in A Civil Campaign - twice, actually. First when By is surprised at how much Ivan tracks Barrayaran politics, but most vividly in that (adorable) scene with Miles when Ivan loudly declares that he doesn't want to get involved, Miles takes him at his words, and Ivan then sulks off all "but who will take care of him and save the day" and ends up putting himself totally in the middle of everything. Ivan isn't really disengaged, he just plays it - not, as he plays foolishness, to protect himself from the public, but to protect himself from his family - I'm reminded of Kareen telling Mark that Miles eats you up, and if it's true of Miles then god knows it's also true of Alys, and Aral, and most of the rest of the significant people in Ivan's life. But Ivan also has the family gifts/diseases, if in less flashy ways. He isn't really a mundie, and he doesn't really, deep down inside, want to be one. His fussing is part of a game that he plays, particularly with Miles and Alys - Cordelia calls him on it in Mirror Dance.

Okay, but the qualities that Tej seems to value in her Ivan Xav are his ordinariness and desire to avoid centrality. And those are only one of Ivan's parts - and it's the other one, the Vor one, that I'm interested in, I admit it. So I feel like the whole ship is based on false pretenses. We see some of that in the text, with Tej being taken aback to find out that Ivan isn't just some guy but is instead third in line to the Barrayaran Empire, the only son of the Emperor's Hostess, and the stepson of Aral Vorkosigan's Dog. The text kind of plays it off as a joke - and if Ivan were really only his mundie mask, I could see that working out. But I end the novel off by feeling worried about Tej, Jacksonian as she is - because she has no idea who the fuck these nice welcoming people actually are.

And I also - well, I like Ivan's Vor face best, you know? I want Ivan pushed out of his contentment, revealed as the fucking excellent mensch he really is. And Tej seems to me to be a sign that Bujold doesn't share that want.
lotesse: (trek_uhura)
I am not going to be seeing Star Trek Into Darkness, because racefail and also just my Trek is the one with the philosophy in it, sorry. I do want to link to [personal profile] greywash's post on the issues with the way that the movie's racefail issues were concealed prior to its release,, because I do think the whole thing has been unfortunate; we needed to be having these conversations months ago, so that it didn't have to feel so much like squee-harshing now. Being grumpy at nu!Trek only ever comes out of being in love with old Trek, anyhow - so I wanna talk about Voyager! Reaction babble up to 1.10. )
lotesse: (imaginary)
meme from [personal profile] ilthit, because I'm trying to freaking finish some of these: The game is to find the word “look” in your current work in progress, and post an excerpt from that section of the manuscript.

Star Wars )

more Star Wars )

Vorkosigan Saga )

Avengers )
lotesse: (vorkosigan_maple)
Posting fic! That is a thing that I used to do!

Alive in your blood now (5735 words) by faviconlotesse
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Vorkosigan Saga - Lois McMaster Bujold
Rating: General Audiences
Warning: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Helen Natalia Vorkosigan, Aral Alexander Vorkosigan, Cordelia Naismith Vorkosigan, Miles Naismith Vorkosigan, Ekaterin Vorsoisson Vorkosigan, Harra Csurik, Ivan Vorpatril, Taura Vorkosigan, Helen Vorthys
Summary:

When the role call comes to “Vorkosigan,” Helen Natalia smiles, throws back her head, and casts her vote.

lotesse: (vorkosigan_maple)
because I ship my ship, oh yes I do:





88.69MB at sendspace


behind the cut, track list and lyrics paired with Vorkosiverse text, Ekaterin's pov dominant:
it wouldn't be make-believe if you believed in me )
lotesse: (vorkosigan_maple)
So I have read Captain Vorpatril's Alliance! and behind the cut are some sundry assorted things about it, including spoilers but possibly not including coherence - I've got a cold and also had to read this book in a room by myself so as not to make squeaky gaspy noises in anyone else's hearing.

Oh, Ivan! )
lotesse: (vorkosigan_maple)
Captain Vorpatril's Alliance e-ARC for download at Baen! And I worked ahead yesterday, and also was blue this morning, so I feel pretty justified in staying in bed for a few hours just to read about Ivan. I'm so excited! I'm so excited! I'm so - scared!
lotesse: (vorkosigan_maple)
a few days ago I left a comment on [personal profile] philomytha's dwidth to the effect that Katharine Hepburn plays Cordelia Naismith Vorkosigan in my head - and then I went looking for pictures - and then I started thinking of others - and then I wanted to know what others thought! So below the cut is a picspam of my Vorkosigan Saga headcasting. I love knowing what books characters look like in people's heads, and I couldn't cast several key figures, so supplements are super welcome!

behold the glittering tinsel of neo-feudalism )
lotesse: (vorkosigan_maple)
I bitch and moan about academia - I had a really bad streak of that this week - but nothing lifts my heart like spending an hour talking to my freshmen about the subversion of the monstrous in the Vorkosigan Saga. Taura, you will always be my best beloved <3
lotesse: (thetimeisnow)
Starting a new semester, putting together my teaching syllabus, prepping for my exam study group, and writing a fair amount of fic, yay!

I'm throwing Bujold's "Labyrinth" into my sff comp class - first time I've ever let myself teach something I'm really actively fannish about. I mean, I guess there's "Serenity," but somehow that feels different. I'm not as passionately in love with Malcolm Reynolds as I am with Miles Vorkosigan - and besides, the Big Damn Movie doesn't concentrate on the aspects of the narrative I find most emotionally compelling, i.e. the Crazy Space Incest. So we'll see how that goes.

In further news of excellent and awesome, [personal profile] ataratah drew fanart for Airy cages quelled! And it's goooorgeous. Extra yay!

I'm ready to go, world. Bring it on.
lotesse: (shakespeare_pearls)
Yuletide reveal & yearly fic roundup, 2011 edition!

For yuletide, I wrote:

Entreat me with your loveliest lie
Vorkosigan Saga, Gregor/Miles ust with bonus Simon and Aral
longing, betrayal, abandonment, and body & disability issues
summary: Count Vordroza never says the word “mutant” when he talks about Miles.
1669 words, general

and, as treats,

All the way from China
Leonard Cohen - Suzanne, Female Narrator/Jesus/Suzanne
bookmaking, babies, and memories, bittersweet
summary: She doesn't know what Suzanne has done, if she's still there, if she's changed, grown old, died, forgotten.
357 words, general

Come away, come away
Peter Pan, Peter/Wendy contemporary university AU
recreational drug use, impaired consent, and anarchy
summary: They left Wendy's familiar haunts, went to where bright fluorescent lights shimmered through the gathering dark, and vendors sold curry and meat pies and falafel on the curbs, and climbed up to a third-story flat on a dingy ill-lit street. The door was painted sky blue, and huge cumulonimbus clouds surrounded the knob. "Welcome to Neverland," Peter said, not using a key, just opening the door.
3075 words, mature

And for the rest of the year: Star Wars OT, Firefly, Prydain )

By the numbers: 7 stories, 6 fandoms, 34,500 words. \o/
lotesse: (greenswirl)
Okay, that's one term paper (the review of literature on masturbation/fantasy) away! Now there's only the seminar paper on Jude the Obscure and The Beth Book left. And I should be working on it right now - but all I really want to do is listen to rhea314's podfic of [personal profile] lightgetsin and [personal profile] sahiya's Miles/Gregor novel What Passing Bells and play solitaire.
lotesse: (fairylights)
I love all y'all. And also Yuletide, and having all my grading done, and Ivan Vorpatril, and being on Thanksgiving break for a week. I might love Ivan Vorpatril more than all the other things in that list. And also this bear, who wants you to know that you're not an idiot (h/t [personal profile] telesilla). But I still love you all most. More even than Ivan Vorpatril. So, you know, a lot.

daughter of the sea, oregano's first cousin

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