ellenscult: (funky)
I've been meaning to post for a while; in brief, I've finished the short course of counselling, yes it's helped and I'd recommend it - talking things out with an impartial, compassionate person is extremely helpful. My car now has a new switch, so the main beam headlights will stay on when I want them to, not when I indicate. It also has other New BitsTM and is pretty much ready for MOT at the end of the month. In completely unrelated news, I am extremely broke this month. Meh. I have a touch of tonsillitis, which is rather annoying since I had my tonsils out around 20 years ago. Double meh! It's been the High Holy Days, so rather belatedly, may you all be written and sealed in the Book of Life for a sweet and healthy year to come.

In knitting news, I finished Dad's jumper and still have to pop it in the post. I've knitted all of the sleeveless hooded cardigan for Jacob (bar the pocket) and have crocheted him a cat out of the leftover yarn; I just have to put the hood onto the jacket with a three needle bind-off, knit the pocket and sew it on, and sew on the buttons. I'm part-way through knitting a Henry scarf with the leftover merino yarn (from Dad's jumper) for my father-in-law's Christmas present and am contemplating knitting another in grey silk for DH for his birthday in November. I've been going to the Knit & Natter groups at Randalstown and Antrim Libraries, which are awesome, especially now I have a library card and have discovered the joys of borrowing magazines, ebooks and audiobooks online with said library membership. For free. Woohoo!

I'm off my daily routines - no meditation, no Duolingo - and I'm not getting to sleep until the middle of the night, which isn't helping, apart from that the NHL season is now underway and the Pittsburgh Penguins games start around midnight BST. (They've won their first two regular season games, which Yay, but their captain, Sidney Crosby, probably the best ice hockey player in the world, is once again out with a concussion, which very much Oh Noes.) As I'm both in the UK and also have no TV license (don't watch live TV, have now stopped watching BBC iPlayer, tend not to watch much of anything anyway), I listen to the Pens games on their in-house radio broadcast, which is great, but makes me profoundly grateful for the UK's advertising standards. I have to refrain from emailing the Pens organisation and asking them to think more carefully about who they sell advertising space to, because some of the radio ads are so far beyond the bounds of truth and decency (both moral and ethical) that I boggle when I hear them. You might not be fat - you might just be bloated! Take this supplement and it'll clear out pounds of rotting, toxic sludge from your belly! And this is paraphrased, without listing the medical claims they're making... Just - wow. How anyone at that supplement company can justify the language they use, how they can see themselves as anything other than (at best) amoral predators, I don't know.

Right, enough of that, I can't clear my head enough for a more coherent rant. But seriously, just, no. Gah!

*deep breath*

Anyway, I've discovered a love of ice hockey and have been following the Pittsburgh Penguins since May, and it's all the fault of fanfiction. No, really. *headdesk* I read a lot of fanfic. This isn't news to anyone who knows me. I tend to skip from fandom to fandom as the mood takes me, and if I enjoy a story by a particular author, I'll go see what else they've written, and then, if I'm bored, I'll look at the stories they have bookmarked, because chances are our tastes will overlap at least to some small degree. It's a nifty way of finding some great stories to read that I'd otherwise not discover. So I read an excellent Teen Wolf series by an author called Sidara, and when I looked at their bookmarks, I spotted a story by TheHoyden, whose stories I've encountered in a few fandoms and always enjoyed. But the story, King and Lionheart, was marked as Hockey RPF (real person fanfic), and RPF makes me uneasy. Writing fanfiction about fictional characters is one thing, but writing about real people crosses a line in my mind. But I like TheHoyden's stories, and this one had a 'marriage of convenience' tag, and I'm a sucker for that trope in romance. Not that I've written my own 'marriage of convenience' fanfic, oh no, not at all. *ahem* So I clicked, and I read, and I've been hooked ever since, both on hockey RPF and on ice hockey and on the Pittsburgh Penguins, who are an amazing team (they won the Stanley Cup shortly after I started following them, go Pens!) and an amazing organisation (they do a lot of stuff for a whole lot of charities, an awful lot of community work, and seem like an awesomely supportive place to work). So yeah, the RPF is a guilty pleasure, but the ice hockey is a genuine pleasure, and though it might be a bit odd to find a love of a sport from reading romance, but eh, that's how my heart works.
ellenscult: (comesee)
in the wrong house, in the wrong ascendancy... )

The state of my inbox: under sixty-five e-mails!

Today's reading:
ellenscult: (writing)
Dear friends, once more...

So, still not dead... I'm in Lymington at my twin's house (she made stew which was amazingly good, including dumplings) and am on my way to Dinan, in Brittany, with [livejournal.com profile] ravenlas, Sue and India, and the new (to me) car. In case anyone's interested, I have: sewed by hand a medieval dress and hood, knitted 3 pairs of socks, written an 18,000 word Stargate: SG1 story and failed to cut my grass. I've also proofread a few books, not been fired for my terrible sick record, and driven around 900 miles. I miss not being on LJ, not seeing you guys, not keeping in touch, however peripherally, and I hope to be back properly in a couple of weeks when I'm home and have internet access.

Btw, the original series of Star Trek is a lot better than I remember, a lot more complex, and the remastered box set is definitely worth it.

So, stay well, stay safe, and I'll catch up with you soon.
ellenscult: (fist of doom)
Rolling the bottom of my trousers... )
ellenscult: (Queen of France)

Happy Jesus Year, [livejournal.com profile] ravenlas! Happy Birthday, Kate! Belated happies to [livejournal.com profile] thirstypixel!



Running at 38rpm; the weekend; a fanvid. )
ellenscult: (glima)
When [livejournal.com profile] gothgrr came round on Wednesday, she happened to mention the Boxercise class at St. John's.

So this evening (after a fab day with [livejournal.com profile] rhube watching Short Circuit, Batteries Not Included, Flight of the Navigator and Tongan Ninja), I dragged my saggy behind off the sofa and went to Boxercise, along with [livejournal.com profile] alasdair1076 and Kate. It's rather hard work, but I very much enjoyed the boxing stuff. Hugely. Mwa ha haaa!

Alas, I appear to have left a lung out in the car park somewhere. I'm sure I'll stop coughing before I go to bed... Mind you, cycling in to the station tomorrow is not going to be so much fun, I very strongly suspect. Ho hum, never mind! I'll be going back next week, I reckon, and maybe I'll be a teensy bit fitter (and have stopped coughing).

G.E.D. month... Not so much. I started knitting that bath mat (from strips of t-shirts). And that story I'm putting up over on [livejournal.com profile] the_proofreader has hit 13.5k. So another 500 words and that'll be an average of 2,000 words a day for the last week. Hurrah! And it Doesn't Suck! Even better! :)

Anything else? Well, the living room is pretty tidy. Well, for my living room. So that counts, I think. And tomorrow the car goes in for its MOT, and... um... that's about it, I think.

Have a great week, y'all.
ellenscult: (bunk)
I've given up on the idea of going back to work this week. Specifically (after yesterday's dream in which my twin sister stropped at me for being lazy), last night's dream featured Jerry as a Dead Set-style zombie biting my ankle. It hurt! I have zombie dreams when I'm overtired. Going into work will make me ill. So. Hello, sofa!

G.E.D. month - yesterday, more written on a story (not on the list), chopped up t-shirts and strung the strips together for knitting into a bathmat (also not on the list) - was ace to see [livejournal.com profile] gothgrr! Today I have done a bit of knitting on that shawl for my mum. It's growing very slowly... Ho hum!

And that story (over on [livejournal.com profile] the_proofreader, read the warnings first if you go take a look) appears to have attracted a bunch of comments with... interesting... icons. *grin* Well, I'm glad that lj is such a friendly and open place. And I'm very glad they're enjoying the story so far. :)

Today, [livejournal.com profile] o_faolain came over and brought photos music and lunch and most of all excellent company. I have very much missed seeing him on the train! It was awesome to see him again. :)
ellenscult: (threesome)
So, yeah, slashfic happened. Not what I was meant to be reading, but never mind, eh? If you're going to read it, read the warnings first, yada yada.

Off to go pack a bag for Fantasy Con, where I shall be this weekend. Then bed. Sleeeep....
ellenscult: (Queen of France)
I made that outfit! Go me! *cough* Ahem!

Random things again:

1. Happy Yorkshire Day to all of us in God's Own County. I know [livejournal.com profile] ravenlas says that title rightly belongs to NI, but we know better, eh? *nudge* *wink*

Today, I miss the hills of my home. There's nothing which compares to watching vast shafts of sunlight drift slowly across the tops of the moors from between towering cathedrals of clouds. Treeless, punctuated by narrow valleys where houses huddle together, even at their greenest they are still more shades of brown than there are words to describe. Standing up there, one truly is on top of the world. And the only sounds are the pummelling of the wind and the occasional birdcall. This is my home. This beautiful, bleak place where, in order to see the 'bigger picture', all you have to do is head up, up, up, until you burst onto the tops and the confines of the valleys are gone, blown away. This barren place, where life teems in the hidden spaces and rewards patient searching. This cold, harsh place, where the dark dry stone walls lie like zebra stripes and radiate heat under the summer sun.

The Vale of York is a kinder, gentler place - easier by far to live in - but it lacks the ability to stun the watcher into awe-inspired silence with its terrible beauty.

Still. It could be worse. It could be raining (as it frequently does). It could be on fire (it does that, too).

2. The [livejournal.com profile] shiny_hats Summer Ficathon is over. I wrote 5 stories: you can find them over on that community, or you can find them from the links on my [livejournal.com profile] the_proofreader account, or you can read them on Fanfiction.net. Or not. Your choice. :)

3. New userpic! Rar!

4. I have the new Richard Morgan to read and review. Woohoo! *is smug* So far? It's getting a good review. A very good review!

5. I have started tidying the house. When it's done, I will get down to writing. At which point I will be grumpy, uncommunicative, largely off LJ (or it eats my head and my time), and I will be off in my own little world. It's like being on drugs, only cheaper.

6. New moodtheme! Courtesy of [livejournal.com profile] misery_chick.

7. The remortgage (afaik) completed yesterday. Hurrah!

8. Have a great weekend, y'all. I'll be at a wedding rehearsal this evening, and a wedding tomorrow, so play nice while I'm gone. And if you can't play nice, at least be good enough to post the pictures...
ellenscult: (hell)
Yes, it's July! Which means it's the start of the [livejournal.com profile] shiny_hats Summer Ficathon! You can find my first fic for it here! It's off my [livejournal.com profile] the_proofreader journal, so yes, it's slashfic, and yes, this one's explicit. Just so's you know.
ellenscult: (pirate)
So yesterday was my annual barbeque. [livejournal.com profile] nearly_everyone attended, and people seemed to have a great time, which makes me very happy. People didn't seem to mind me running around in circles, being unable to finish sentences, and foisting huge quantities of food onto them. People also brought their small people, who raced around and generally had a fab time and didn't fall into the pond and drown. Which is definitely a bonus.

Thank you *so* much to you all for coming! It was an awesome day, spent in the company of lots of people who I know and love. You're amazing!

I have: a fox, a red sticklebrick, a yellow pencil crayon, and a black cherokee jumper. I know who the sticklebrick belongs to - any takers for the others?

ETA:Jumper claimed! And fox claimed!

And thank you guys for the awesome selection of wool, vouchers for wool, vast quantities of truly excellent chocolate, and lush bath stuff. Truly the perfect presents! *is so happy*

You are awesome. And to the few of you who couldn't make it, you have a standing invitation to come and visit, as you should know by now. So get in touch, come visit, and we'll barbeque anyway. *grin*

In other news: today I did lots of washing, a little tidying up, and some writing. It's been my first vegging 'day off' in a long time, it feels like! And tomorrow the very last part of Correspondence Course goes up over at [livejournal.com profile] the_proofreader. So if you were waiting to read it all? Head on over in the morning and it'll be waiting for you. *grin*
ellenscult: (devilish)
I have a writing challenge to issue to my writerly friends. As a serious writing exercise. )

It'll be worthwhile, I promise.
ellenscult: (rock)
This morning I travelled into work by train, as usual, on a nice, modern train. And I listened to Fort Minor playing on my iPod, through my bluetooth headphones. While doing 16th century blackwork embroidery on a 15th century linen shift. And since getting into work I've posted up part 16 of my 25th century Firefly fanfic (over on [livejournal.com profile] the_proofreader).

Sometimes, my life strikes me as improbable.

Also: I am tired. I have left my phone at home, because I no can haz cheezburgler brain. In more dire forgetfulness, my chilli chocolate is also at home, not here with me. I am distressed.

For those of you on my f-list who wish to keep track of their story submissions, here's a good, free online tracker. Also: a Waterstones story competition. Prize: a place on an Arvon Foundation writing course. *wants*

So no, I'm not getting much work done today. In fact, I'd be getting more done if I were simply at home watching tv. Ho hum, never mind.
ellenscult: (bunk)
Hey! So! That fanfic. Which was a little thing. Is finished. At 32,200 words.


I will be posting it on various communities through my other LJ account, [livejournal.com profile] the_proofreader. It'll be tagged and cut. Don't feel you have to read it. It's fanfic, for goodness' sake!

All right, it's practically a novelization of an episode, or at least a novelettization. And dammit, it's good stuff! But it's also slashfic, graphic in a couple (or three) of places, and it's not for everyone. So, a post tagged with Correspondence Course? Be aware of Teh Pr0n.

Mayhap now I c'n get on with writin' the rest o' my stuff. Or maybe not...
ellenscult: (fearless)
Correspondence Course has nudged over the 24k mark. It should top out at 30k, max, over the next few days.

I know I've been saying that I should be writing some of the many other things I have on the go. But actually, I've learned a few things from playing in Joss Whedon's sandbox, and at [livejournal.com profile] alasdair1076's encouragement, I'm sharing them.

1. Fall in love with your characters. Makes it far easier to write them.
2. Hear them talking in your head. Also makes it far easier to write them.
3. There doesn't have to be huge amounts of plot if it's about the characters. The little things fill in pretty much all the holes.
4. It's really easy to pick up someone else's toys and play with them when they've been so well crafted in the first place.
5. Which means that doing a lot of background work on characters isn't wasted time. It actually saves on huge amounts of faffing.
6. When something's eaten my head, sometimes the only way to get my head back is to let it crap me out at the end.

So there you go.
ellenscult: (rock)
My Fridays currently go something along the following lines:

Get up at 6am, mad rush to catch the early train to Sheffield.
Leave an hour early to catch the early train home.
Cycle home, dive in the car, drive to (north) Leeds for the Erev Shabbas service at Shul.
Drive home, grab D&D stuff, head round the corner to [livejournal.com profile] a_crow's for [livejournal.com profile] greynolds' game.
Get home again some time after midnight, collapse.

Today's Friday had a few alterations...

Get up at 6am (after little sleep), rush to catch the early train. Which was cancelled. Sew some more of a shift, catch the later train.
yada yada...
Drive to Leeds through Fulford to pick up my friend's little girl and drop her off at home in (south) Leeds, then drive back north to shul, half an hour late. Fine, running on JMT anyway, should be fine. Alas, no. No-one on the door. (Big no-no, that.) So I couldn't get in to the service. So I rang the bell then hung around for a bit, then drove home to:
No D&D - my fellow hack'n'slashers have abandoned the game for the lures of Whitby and some sword course on the continent, alas.
A husband who's head has, I think, already exploded.

Note to self: When old and stupid, do not ask children to explain the latest technology to you. Especially not if you're not that old and stupid, just in the habit of not listening. Or thinking. Or looking at the screen in front of you.

And for reference? The latest technology was actually how to open a browser, go to Gmail and log onto an email account. Then open an email, read it and reply.

Oh dear. Never mind, eh? We have chinese takeout. And something on telly. And shortly I will return to Correspondence Course, which has reached the dizzying heights of 20k words. Good grief, woman! Leave Joss's characters alone and play in your own sand box, eh? Eh? Never mind, message not getting through...
ellenscult: (Shopping)
Who wants a Dell XPS gaming laptop? Any spec, approx 20% discount?

A group order is going in. From the date of the order, there's 45 days to pay up. It makes life a lot easier if you're in the UK, too.

Any takers? Let me or [livejournal.com profile] ravenlas know by the middle of next week at the latest.

In other news, there really isn't any. Correspondence Course is up to 17k words. Which makes it, officially, a novelette. Sad, sad, sad. Of all the things I have to write, fanfic shouldn't be top of my list! Never mind... I felted a naalbound bag. There are still mice in the compost bin, although I'm hoping there are fewer by now.
ellenscult: (threesome)
The shed is now re-roofed and re-felted. I need to get some more clout nails and knock them in, and it'll all be finished. Finally, the shed should stay dry this winter! Yay! Although, sod's law, it'll get blown down next week... *grin*

For the esteemed Master Smith, aka [livejournal.com profile] rhube, more Doctor Who slashfic. Very, very nsfw - you have been warned! 5/5.

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