But really that had me browsing through pictures on my phone recently since that's my main camera for recording my life, and it's kind of hilariously made up of two things for the past few months: bread in various stages and animals that my cat has killed and brought to the door. Which is even more hilarious when you know that my 1st grade science project was titled "Animals that my cats catch." So yeah.
Anyway. I'm making regular loaf bread today from the Joy of Cooking, and tomorrow I'm going to do Casatiello, which is an enriched Italian bread that has chunks of cheese and salami in it. I haven't gone grocery shopping for the extra ingredients yet, which is why it's waiting till tomorrow.
Been working on my Teen Wolf fic this week. I'm kind of feeling like I want to clear off what's ongoing before starting something really new. I'm still messing with Dragon Age short fic, but I don't really have a direction for a lot of that, though I'm thinking I might once I get to some mysterious critical mass.
Still been reading a lot of Dragon Age fic. This week's rec is
Haven (256723 words) by SageFic
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Cullen Rutherford/Female Mage Trevelyan
Summary: Kate Trevelyan, mage and earnest, genteel nerd, travels to the Conclave with Colleen Lavellen, an ex-Dalish-turned-librarian, and Robert Trevelyan, her charming smuggler cousin. But when the Divine's peace talks explode, Robert falls in with bad company, Coll finds herself chasing mercs, and Kate becomes...the Herald of Andraste? Sort of. Kate has absolutely NO idea what she’s doing, and her growing attraction to a certain former templar isn’t helping.
Why I love it: This covers just the time in Haven starting a little before the game with some really great character work throughout. Basically I love this story for the conversations you get between characters. It delves into the mage-templar conflict, and really sets up a nice discussion between mage!Trevelyan and Cullen about Kirkwall that is really well done and not seen very often. Early scenes include Divine Justinia, and there's a lot of good daily life included. It diverges enough from gameplay to keep it interesting. I'm not a huge fan of the Lavellen or male!Traveleyan characters that are included, or the epistolary chapters, but over all it's good.
I liked that it was nearly dialogue free (and I didn't mind that I couldn't understand half the dialogue that there was), but I felt that the structure was overly fiddly and unnecessary and it kept me from full immersion (um, pun not intended?) emotionally. Also the music was too loud and there was too much of it.
It also suffers a little from Band of Brothers syndrome in that I couldn't tell the two young dudes apart for most of the story. Once they're both wet so you can't tell which one has curly hair and which one has straight hair, I couldn't tell them apart, and I honestly didn't care that much about them beyond the generic - I mean, I didn't want any of those guys to die, and I felt there was nothing specific about those two to make me care more. ( spoilers ) (Otoh, casting Harry Styles - who was good, I thought - was a smart move, because I always recognized him, even half-drowned.)
Mark Rylance and Kenneth Branagh (and James D'Arcy!) were great, as was Tom Hardy. I mean, I would have watched a whole movie where Tom Hardy ( spoiler ) But overall, it's a B to B+ kind of movie for me. I wouldn't see it again.
If you do see it, I can say it was definitely worth seeing in 70mm, if you have that option. Otoh, if you have a fear of drowning, I don't recommend it for you.
Both L and I had similar mixed feelings. We discussed it on the walk to the bus stop, and my god, I have never sweated as much as I sweated yesterday - it was not a day for walking but I did a lot of it. I was so overheated that I never once felt cold in the movie theater despite being sleeveless, which has never ever happened to me before.
Before the movie we were going to meet at a Mexican place that looked good, but it was so jam packed with people, we ended up at the Cafe Tallulah, where the cheeseburger is fantastic, but again, on a day as hot as yesterday, wtf were the front windows all doing open, so you couldn't feel the air conditioning hardly at all? I never sweated so much in my life while doing nothing.
Also, yesterday, my consolation birthday present arrived - a beautiful red patent leather Love Moschino tote bag (wow, there were three left in stock when I ordered mine and now there are none! I'm glad I got there in time!). During the whole epic search for a new bag, I coveted a red patent leather bag, but couldn't find one (or, rather, couldn't find one that was less than, like, $800 and while I'm profligate, I'm not that profligate), since I guess they aren't in style right now? Except it's red patent leather so I can't imagine how it could go out of style? But whatever. On a whim on Wednesday, I checked Zappo's to see if there were any available, and lo and behold, there it was. It's beautiful. It's big and kind of unwieldy (and unpleasantly sticky against the bare skin of my arm in the heat), but I don't care, because it's gorgeous.
Bosses 1 & 3 both admired it as I unpacked it from the box, and they were like, "Are you going to save it for special occasions?" and I said, "Hell no!" (note: I did not actually say "Hell no!" I just said, "no! I bought it so I could use it! Because it is beautiful!") And I recommend to all of you to use your beautiful and special things rather than waiting for some mythical special occasion to crop up, because frequently, you will be waiting forever and never get to enjoy the beautiful thing you bought for yourself. Using a special bag/wearing your beautiful new shoes/opening that expensive bottle of wine - they can all make a regular occasion special, and I recommend you do that rather than wait for some occasion arbitrarily deemed "special" enough to break out the fancy lipstick or whatever. Live your best life whenever you can, people!
* I cannot finish your urgent project in a timely fashion if you keep interrupting me to ask when your project is going to be finished! Please stop!
* We have already done Thing based on all your requirements (and with your approval!) last quarter. We can just update it instead of spending so much time trying to come up with a new way to do it (only to come up with basically the exact same Thing). There is no need to spend hours reinventing the wheel!
* You have to decide whether you need a meeting to happen ASAP or if you need everyone involved present, because it's July coming up on August, and half the people you need will be out on vacation at any given moment and I have no control of that.
* I don't want healthy snacks in the vending machine. If I am driven to getting food from it, it's generally because I want Frito Lay corn chips or terrible plasticky cheap chocolate, not some sort of chip made from beans or some kind of granola bar! WTF?
Wednesday reading meme:
What I've just finished
Caliban's War by James S.A. Corey, which I enjoyed a lot, mainly because Avasarala is the best and also Bobbie! ♥ Holden still needs a lot of punching though. Ugh. Why is this guy the main character? Not only is he a dead bore, he's a ridiculously common dead bore!
I like TV!Prax better than book!Prax, I think, but I also think the show compresses the timeline in a way that means I don't get bored with a character having repetitive beats, the way I can, and do in this case, in a book.
What I'm reading now
Still, I picked up Abaddon's Gate and started it this morning, so I'm still entertained enough to continue.
What I'm reading next
The next book in this series, probably. I don't even know what the name of it is. *looks it up* Ah, Cibola Burn.
I also read two really long stories that both turned out to be in progress, which I probably should have noticed but didn't. I mean, when I see a thing is 175K words long, I figure it's done. I mean, who has that much to say in one story? But no. Sigh.
In my recent fanfic readings, I learned that I will nope out of a story if you kill off Wedge Antilles. Which was a surprise to me - how strongly my kneejerk NOPE was - but there you go. Do not want! (I mean, I don't care for any character death in my fic, and generally not in canon either! but I get that some AU premises require it. But like Bartleby the scrivener, I would prefer not to.)
I also learned that I don't really ship Bodhi with anyone but if I did it would have to be Jyn and Cassian. Gotta keep the Star Wars OT3 pattern going, I guess. I just don't find Jyn and Cassian all that compelling. *hands* I'd much rather read about Baze and Chirrut being the most married. (I think Rebels is the only place that doesn't have an OT3, but I am okay with that. I'm already bracing for Kanan and Hera to get an undeserved tragic ending.)
I also realized that in addition to believing that Luke Skywalker is asexual, I believe Anakin is demisexual, and both Leia and Padme are bisexual. Ahsoka is mostly into women except that I also ship her with Anakin (and Rex, a little), so there are exceptions? And Obi-Wan is pansexual and flirting his way across the galaxy at any given moment.
Which is probably more than anyone cared to know about my Star Wars head canons. *snerk*
Now for the fun twist - if you see something you want to read more of, tell me in comments and I'll work on more tonight and post it.
Short stuff in progress
The Dragon Age stuff
post-Awakenings, Cousland Warden: Alistair arrives with more recruits (Anders POV)
Origins, Ian Tabris: Camp with Sten and Alistair
Awakenings, Ian Tabris: Dear Zev
Inquisition, Danielle Trevelyan: Advisors Council (Cullen POV)
Inquisition, Danielle Trevelyan: Recruits (Cullen POV)
Inquisition, Danielle Trevelyan: In Sera's Wake
Inquisition, Danielle Trevelyan: Iron Bull and the Chargers
Inquisition, Danielle Trevelyan: Aftermath of the dreadnought run
Inquisition, Danielle Trevelyan: Exalted Plains with Bull and Dorian
Inquisition, Danielle Trevelyan: Ian and Zevran arrive
The Inquisition Job, Leverage crossover: Joining the Inquisition
Werewolf!Sheriff #5: Constructive Interference, or Derek gets a job
dark!Merlin/Arthur non-con sequel to Look Into the Light
Long stuff in progress
Excerpt from the giant Derek builds a pack story that's currently stalled
The 100/Teen Wolf
Excerpt from the giant fusion crossover where the 100 kids crash into Laura Hale's territory
These are all the ones that feel active. I have a few half-formed ideas for Sense8 (Will and Wolfgang taking care of each other was the one that stuck in my head), and Black Sails (I want all the post-s4 John/Madi reconciliation fic but I don't want to write it), and Yuri on Ice domestic fluff (that other people have already written so), and some older long stories (Merlin) and short stories (Leverage) that have kind of been backburnered off my radar, but I'm willing to talk ideas too. Basically, I just want to talk story ideas even if they never come to anything, and I might just start talking of all the fic that never was or has yet to be anyway.
I caught this week's Orphan Black.
( spoilers )
Ugh I stayed up way too late last night reading and I'm paying for it now. I just want to sleeeeeeeeeeep.
A. I had a most excellent birthday dinner on Saturday evening. L and I went to Uva, which I had never been to before and it was so worth it. They have an adorable little courtyard in back, so we sat outside and drank a lot of wine (A LOT OF WINE) and ate like queens.
2. I was going to make myself a birthday cake, but then I was sad and also I wasn't sure it would be good and I didn't want to make a cake that big and have it be terrible (because then I couldn't foist half of it off on my coworkers). That would just be one disappointment too far. I still want to make it though. It looks amazing. And terrible. But mostly amazing. (I would have made fresh whipped cream though instead of using Cool Whip. I'm not much of a food snob, but fresh whipped cream just tastes better, regardless of authenticity.)
iii. The A Wrinkle in Time trailer looks fantastic.
D. Star Wars: The Last Jedi - Behind the Scenes. I might have burst into tears when Carrie Fisher said, "It's all about family," but you can't prove it!
5. I posted a story for my birthday:
Sing a New Song (@AO3)
Star Wars; Vader, Leia, Luke, Obi-Wan; AU; g; 4,130 words
In which Ben has a bad feeling, Luke makes it to Tosche Station, Leia takes control of the situation, and no one understands how hard Vader's life is.
This is the sequel to Just a Little Bit of History Repeating but probably not the one that people were asking for. *hands* I'm probably never going to write a long involved epic AU where they actually overthrow Palpatine. I'm just not that kind of writer. I just want the fraught family reunions where the Skywalkers get to be all ~dramatic~ at each other.
I don't usually write multiple POV stories anymore, but this one seemed to require it, so we could see Luke's "Wtf?!", Obi-Wan's "I have a bad feeling about this," Leia's ability to roll with the weirdness (and also ameliorate the tension between Vader and Obi-Wan), and Vader's misguided belief that he has control of anything, let alone his kids.
As I said in an endnote on AO3, the title is from U2's "40" (and not the Mountain Goats' "Psalms 40:2"*) and I kind of feel like the title of the concluding story of this little trilogy should also come from Psalm 40 but right now it's tentatively titled "How Soon Is Now" for ~reasons. I still have to figure out how to actually write it. Because I couldn't leave Ahsoka out! The story was originally going to end with that - I felt like Vader saying "no, there's someone else" was kind of analogous to Yoda's "no, there is another," but given that it was Luke's section, I thought he ought to have the last word.
Anyway, I like how it turned out, and I'm glad some other people did too. *g*
*which I still think should have a SPN vid made to it, and from which I already used the title "If I'm Not Beyond Repair" for Bucky, or you know I'd be using that for a Star Wars story ("Lord, send me a mechanic, if I'm not beyond repair" could definitely be a Vader and Luke story, you know? Though I could probably do something with "in the burning fuselage of my days" or even "feel bad about the things we do along the way, but not really that bad" if the right story idea struck. Huh. *adds them to the list of titles to use someday*)