alternative narratives

Now Presenting: Brujos


Installment 1: The Devil

Episode 1: Aries

Episode 2: Taurus

Episode 3: Gemini 

Episode 4: Cancer

TV can be art. TV can be revolutionary. TV can be popular entertainment AND incite critical dialogue. Audiences are hungry and intelligent enough for challenging work. This describes the philosophy behind BRUJOS, a counter-hegehmonic web series. Produced by Open TV (beta), conceived, written and directed by Ricardo Gamboa and to be shot by cinematographer Ben Kolak, BRUJOS is a queer-of-color web series.

BRUJOS blends the Latin American soap opera, American sitcom, and critical theory as it follows a coven of four queer Latino doctoral candidates as they learn magic, indulge in nightlife, navigate intimate relationships, and write seminar papers all while trying to survive a witch-hunt. These young protagonists confront histories and realities of racial and gendered inequality as they battle the secret society of white, heteronormative male descendants of the first New World colonizers behind the witch-hunt. Twelve, seven-minute episodes corresponding to signs of the zodiac cycle have been developed through queer men of color testimony; interviews with actual practitioners of divination and magic, i.e. psychics, santeras, tarot readers, etc.; and with academics of cultural studies, performance studies, and queer theory.

BRUJOS addresses the current the landscape of television: Gay men and people of color are more apparent than ever in mainstream television. Sitcoms like “Blackish” and “Fresh Off The Boat” depict families of color attaining the American dream. Programs such as “Looking” and “Modern Family” feature middle and upper class white gay men searching for love or functioning as an all-American family. While these shows are representational achievements, they are not revolutionary ones.

In these cases, ethnic, racial and sexual minorities are portrayed in ways that support dominant culture, narratives, values and relationality. Commercial television studios and networks preoccupied with “scale” and “big data” seldom produce aesthetically or politically challenging work to secure mass viewership. This only further marginalizes non-normative people who’s lives, realities, and stories do not fit within their depictions and who devise new ways of being under the pressures of inequality that are never affirmed.

Moreover, Chicago has become a hotbed for television production. However, series such as Chicago P.D. reiterate stereotypes of people of color as criminals. Mega-hit EMPIRE provides more complex portrayals but it’s get-rich-or-die-trying messaging is consistent with popular culture. Too often work that offers alternative images, narratives, and values is not seen as viable by mainstream producers.

For such reasons, Stephanie Jeter moved from big budget television producing to assume a critical and creative approach to television production. Jeter’s commitment to working with independent artists led her to BRUJOS. BRUJOS was conceived by Ricardo Gamboa, an award-winning “artivist” committed to creating work outside institutional frameworks. Gamboa began development for BRUJOS in 2014 through informal interviews with queer Latino men and healers and psychics.

anonymous asked:

I thought I was over of how bad s4 was but I'm not and it's now 4 am and I can't sleep. The thought that's making me loose sleep is why did they have to make Mary part of the team? It's just the two of them against the rest of the world, right? why did they have to love her and include her in the cases? Why can't at least Sherlock see how horrible she is? I know I'm being rediculous but it gets to me it really does

Hey same ridiculous insomniac anon do you know what gets to me too??? John cheating on Mary even if it’s texting… people argue that it’s in character he’s a womanizer after all but isn’t he the guy who’s loyal very quickly? What do you think?

Hi Nonny!

Yeah, I never understood why they went the route of making all of S4 essentially NOT about John and Sherlock. I liked the visuals of T6T and TLD, but Mary REALLY fucking killed it for me, especially the magical redemption arc they chose to give to her. The whole season felt really ooc for me, and Mary being more of Sherlock’s partner than John was REALLY rubbed me and many others the wrong way. The way the narrative was going, it SHOULD have been her being on the run FROM them, not working WITH them.

Because of this, I really, really feel like there is a false narrative at play here, that the entirety of S4 is being told like a blog entry (hence why they stopped the blog AND used the title of one of the entries to clue us into this fact) because of all the OOC-ness, inconsistencies, fourth wall breaking, “scene jumping” and the “fakeness” of Mary’s death and TFP. The season contains a sense of adventure,  is romanticized (though in the wrong direction), and fantastical elements, just like the blog. I found it SO bizarre that Sherlock CONSTANTLY kept saying “I’m Sherlock Holmes!”… just like John’s blog would have done. And TFP for me is John’s TAB, so there’s already an alternative narrative. Anyway, this went way off topic, but you get me. John’s blog is playing out on screen. Why, I don’t know; perhaps to show the general audience that not having John and Sherlock in the picture together doesn’t work, since most of the entries are told as if John is standing on the sidelines watching events unfold – ergo making the season seem very not-our-show. Plus, calling the first episode “The Six Thatchers” after a blog entry on John’s blog and ENDING the season with Mary narrating is so telling to me.

Second part of your ask: I AGREE. It’s really weird to me, simply because we SAW John was essentially done with dating by the end of ASiB because he was happy with whatever he could get with Sherlock. And it took him TWO YEARS to mourn Sherlock before he decided to move on, and for whatever reason, Mary was able to establish that trust with John within six months (I presume she emulated what she thought John wanted, but she’s a professional manipulator). He only stayed with Mary because he didn’t think Sherlock wanted what John wanted, and perhaps also some manipulation on Mary’s part, convincing John that Sherlock would never love him like she loved him.

So then when John is “cheating” I find it really OOC, if only because I just can’t see John ever wanting to get involved with anyone every again after the heartbreak of both Sherlock and Mary. Though, I still hold the belief that it’s really Sherlock John is texting in T6T, and we are told otherwise because of the false narratives (given that I think that the episodes are being told like a blog entry, it’s only natural to assume lies about the things truly happening are present). And maybe it was “just texting”, fine, but it just doesn’t really fit John’s character to me unless that person is Sherlock or unless John is doing another plan behind everyone’s backs with Mycroft (ie. the texting is coded and E is an associate of Mycroft). He has serious trust issues, even an emotional affair with some rando on the bus just doesn’t jive with his character arc they’ve built up over three seasons.

I don’t know. People say it’s in his character, but I just have a really hard time seeing it, especially since he knows the kind of person Mary is (killing Sherlock for trying to tip off John), like… I can’t imagine he would do that again. Mary’s complete shift from the character she was in S3 is what’s tipping me off the most about a false narrative, and as such we can assume the other characters may not be who they seem to be as well, at least in my opinion.

Good Comics That Had Bad Consequences

The Punisher Volume 1 (1986) & 2 (1987)

What they should have learned: Writers Mary Joe Duffy and later Mike Baron melded elements of men’s adventure novels and VHS-era crime films to superhero comics elevating Frank Castle from a fairly one-note Spider-Man foil to a compelling anti-hero whose popularity continues today.

What they actually learned:  Marvel and DC Comics churned out scores of deadly gun carrying anti-heroes trying to recreate Frank’s success over and over again.

Watchmen (1986)

What they should have learned: Alan Moore’s magnum opus is a one-of-a kind blend of world building, non-linear narrative, and alternative history to create a true mind-spinning work of unparalleled depth.

What they actually learned: Swearing and death scenes makes you “mature.”

Batman: The Killing Joke (1988)

What they should have learned: With it’s sickening violence, lurid nightmarish colors, and elaborate backgrounds Moore’s most controversial DC book is a masterpiece of tension that takes Batman & the Joker’s conflict to it’s furthest logical conclusion and intends to sicken the reader.

What they actually learned: Rather than being the apex of grimdark “The Killing Joke” inspires a generation of readers and writers to decide that Batman should ONLY be grimdark to the point that characters like Harley Quinn and The Mad Hatter have quadruple digit body-counts.  Also Barbara Gordon remains crippled for years despite Moore regretting making that part of the story.

Todd McFarlane’s Spider-Man (1988)

What they should have learned:  A young artist takes some visual risks and becomes popular by eschewing Marvel’s house style of the time creating a unique and striking visual. The time experimenting with Spider-Man gives McFarlane the tools to create his wildly popular original series Spawn.

What they actually learned: Rather than inspire companies to take risks with their artists the popularity of McFarelane, Jim Lee, and Rob Liefeld inspire Marvel & DC to make their house style an amalgam of “The Image Style” resulting in eyesores like “Extreme Justice” and “Force Works.”

Bone (1991)

What they should have learned: By mixing cartoon antics and high fantasy Jeff Smith proved that child friendly comics can reach a wide audience and that cartoonish books don’t have to be simple or boring.

What they actually learned: Once the value of a mint condition copy of Bone #1 shot to $100 in Wizard’s Price Guide speculators started looking at black and white indy comics like they were lottery tickets.

Alias (2001)

What they should have learned: Another genre mash-up this neo-noir mix of violence, sex, super-heroics and gritty story-telling FINALLY gave Marvel a critically acclaimed Mature Readers title that could compete with DC’s Vertigo line.

What they actually learned: Writers see Bendis’s take on The Purple Man and conclude that sex crimes are an easy way to show how bad your villain is. Thus paving the way for sleaze-fests like “Identity Crisis” and “Kick-Ass II.” 

Ultimate Spider-Man #1 (2002)

What they should have learned: By taking a thoughtful slow build a young Brian Michael Bendis proved that with clever dialog and solid pacing that character building can be just as exciting as superhero action.

What they actually learned: You can pad-out a one-issue story to six issues then sell it as a trade.

Are people actually shocked by the latest sorry and obvious stunt developments with Louis? Well, you might as well pull up a chair and get comfy cuz some of us have been in this space for over a year now.

1DHQ has made it pretty clear for a while that they still call most of the shots. They still believe in keeping fans addicted to drama, awkwardly illogical narratives, alternative facts, forced closeting and keeping lowlife broads relevant. They hate 1D, hate the fans (women in particular), but love the money and 1D’s brand value.

Are we all on the same page now? We should be. Seeing the fakery surrounding 5/5 is the only way to gauge how deep the rabbit hole is. Btw, it’s so deep we can’t see daylight anymore. Prepare to deal accordingly, if you choose to deal at all.

Anonymous Submission - The Lost Ophie Hunter Interview

In an exciting and exclusive interview Rachel Cumberbatch breaks her silence and speaks publicly for the first time in 3 years!

Interv: Hello Mrs. Rachel Hunter. Can I call you Ophie?
Rachel: You can call me Mrs. Cumberbatch.
Interv: Tell us something about yourself.
Ophie: Where should I start ? I am an Oscar® award nominee, a 7th time BAFTA-nominee, I won an Emmy Award and a Lawrence Olivier award.
Int: Those are your husband’s awards…
Ophie: Making those kind of distinctions is so terribly middle-class. Bob’s awards are my awards, his accomplishments are my accomplishments.

Interviewer: Talking about the latest news, how does a woman who was notorious for not wanting to be called maternal, get involved in a project which depicts motherhood in a dystopian world? What made you change your mind?

Rachel Hunter: It was always a firm belief of mine that Motherwood is not so much about being a mother per se, it is not about giving birth to a baby as much as it is about the power to create an ilusion, to give birth to your avant-garde art. Biology is not your destiny and yet it is.
When I finished reading my sister-in-law’s manuscript, I saw opera and I saw art in it, a narrative of the individual so utterly unique and so powerful that I felt a moral obligation to share it with the masses. I owe to the world to share my hidden Production talents.

Interviewer: What happened next?
Ophie: I went into to my craft’s room and started to create moodboard after moodboard searching for the perfect one which could reflect my creative vision: a vision that included Michelangelo’s Pietà sculpture in Saint Peter’s Cathedral, the Norwegian born, expressionist painter and printer Edward Munch’s 1899 lithograph “Woman in Three Stages (Sphinx),  American photographer Gertrude Käsebier’s 1899 “Blessed Art Thou Among Women,” and Pablo Picasso’s 1901 painting from his blue period “Woman and Child”.
My aim is to challenge all the preconceptions of underrepresented mothers with ambitious, alternative narratives. Something I as an avant-garde artist tried to do in the 2015 Oscar campaign.

Interviewer: Some people say that you do not have the knowledge, skills or the background experience to do such a job…
Rachel: Nonsense. My past work, my acting, writing, producing and directorial credentials during the 2015 Oscar campaign speak for themselves. People seem to forget that I was casted by Harvey Weinstein himself, chosen out of thousands of auditions conducted throughout the world. The Oscar campaing director, the casting director, the Publicists, the PR teams, the Agents, they All praised my natural acting talent.

Interviewer: Some people say that you didn’t do your job properly, and you went rogue on the Red Carpet…
Whoever he married: If that production was a flop it was not my fault. It was entirely Bob’s fault.
I had a silent acting part and yet you can see my trademark comedy, brilliant timing and patented facial expressions! Bob is an oscar nominee and yet he was the one who could not improvise like I did.
He didn’t understand that going “off script” could offer the audience moments of magic in the Red Carpet events. That’s what I did during the entire course of the scripted oscar campaign.
Unscripted and improvised acting (as the one I did when I lowered my clutch and revelead my nascent bump on a RC event to Bob) - that was amazing and an established art form in his own right.

Interv: ….

Interviewer: But exactly how did you get hired as a Producer for this upcoming film ?
Rachel Hunter: I went straight to Bob and asked him if he was interested in providing invaluable support and funding to one of the UK’s most promising producers so that this person could build her career and develop relationships and projects with some of the UK’s most exciting and creative emerging filmmakers and at the same time contributing to the cultural and economic success of the UK’s film industry…
Bob said that he would be interested in meeting such a person. And I told him that he had already met her. You can imagine his surprise and his amazement.

Interviewer: And what is your response to those who accuse you of Nepotism ?
Ophie: Those accusations are beyond ridiculous and are extremely offensive. I want to be crystal clear: there was no nepotism. The only thing that happened was that favoritism was granted to Bob’s relatives based on their connections and relationships, instead of their credentials and merits. Maybe some outsiders were better experienced and qualified for the jobs but they were not his relatives like I was, so they were not considered. THAT was all that happened.

Interviewer: You just gave the exact definition of Nepotism…  
Whoever He married: Oh.

Interviewer: What are your career plans for the future?
Mrs Rachel Cumberbatch: My immediate goal is to demonstrate through this film my ground-breaking style and my original and unique vision for the future of UK film.
After this project’s sucess I expect to branch out, to develop my own projects. I have a reputation for driving forward award-winning, ambitious work in a variety of forms – red carpet and live events, art installations, digital media – as well as continue my innovative collaborations with UK filmmakers, Freelance paparazzi Tabloid newspapers, Gossip blogs and Haute-couture fashion designers.
I also have plans to write a semi autobiographical play based on my own life experience as a Star entitled:
EXCUSE ME, maybe you don’t know who I’m married to!
It’s a critique to those people who are self-entitled star wannabes, with no sense of self-awareness or detachment whatsoever.


You, dearest Nonny, are an evil genius!

anonymous asked:

Hi! I'm currently writing a novel with two alternating narrators and even though I try, the whole really feels like a patchwork of scenes sewn together by short transition. I know it's hard to advise someone for that without reading their thing, but do you have any general idea as to how make it flow more smoothly?

Hi! I’m terribly sorry for not getting back to you sooner, AP tests are coming up and I’ve been paying less attention to this account in order to study. (Learning like 500 years of US history in one weekend is… challenging.)

To start off, I’d like to know whether or not you are alternating the narrators between chapters or switching inbetween scenes. I haven’t written many stories (in general, but also) with alternating narratives, but what I usually do is split it between the chapters. We get all of what character 1 experiences in chapter 1, then we get all of what character 2 experiences in chapter 2. 

(Which is the most basic way of splitting the narratives, you can be fancy and split it up by having 5 chapters devoted to one, then maybe one or two devoted to the other, ect.)

Also, consider why you are writing with two alternating narrators. Is it really necessary for the story, or is it slowing you down? If your work is really patchy then maybe two narrators just isn’t working for this particular work? 

Some things to help are: 

  • Use dividers. If you’ve ever read books with split narratives (which you should, always keep reading if you want to write), sometimes they have little dividers in between certain scenes. You may already be using these and know what they are, but for anyone else out there it’s usually something that just breaks up the writing and separates scenes. (here’s a link about scene dividers)
  • Try to end one scene with something that could lead into the next. For example, maybe Jenna has a revelation about who the bad person is, which leads into Kelly’s narrative where she bumps in to said bad person. The two people are not near each other, and Jenna isn’t able to contact Kelly for some odd reason, leading into a mess that needs to be solved. 
  • Try not to switch in the middle of a scene involving both characters. While this can probably be done well, I personally find it difficult to do this without making it feel like a patchwork of random scenes put together. Maybe only get one perspective of a conversation, and have the other character give their perspective later on, but typically stick to one narrative during an event. (If you’re switching during a chapter, and not switching between chapters, which is much easier-though I’ve usually seen it done during battle scenes)
  • Read, like, a lot. I’ll link some articles and such and other books that have split narratives in it at the end. But really, you should read other books. Nobody becomes perfect at a skill just by reading about it, (or maybe they do because they’re superhuman, I don’t know) people who practice skills watch a lot of of people do this skill. There’s probably something psychological to talk about here, but I’m not about to pull up sources for that right now. So just know this; reading books that have split narratives does help, reading in general helps with your writing because you will be exposed to different techniques and styles and it will influence your writing (hopefully) for the better. 

I didn’t mention every single thing that you can do, because some of these people just articulate it better than me! So here are some other articles you can cruize through for some other tips:

Best of luck with your novel! And again I’m so sorry I’ve taken so long to reply!

ladyruthless71  asked:

Hi! First off, I love all you do and write! Thank you for all of it! Second, I've just had an epiphany of sorts about the memory stuff. The stuff that erases your memory, I don't remember what it's called. It's explained, at the very beginning, that it will make the last 5 minutes or so disappear and could also affect your memories up until that moment. Sherlock can;t ever remember Greg's name, that the Earth revolves around the Sun or his own sister's face! I feel this may be key. Thoughts?

Hi Lovely!

Okay… I’m not trying to be mean, but I’m giggling at the irony of you forgetting the name of the drug that ERASES MEMORY hee hee. It’s TD-12, and I have seen some theories surrounding how it could be the big “plot device” in the series that accounts for a lot of the inconsistencies within the series. Too bad they literally ruined that with TFP.

HOWEVER, I don’t think it has anything to do with Sherlock’s consistent blind spots on the solar system and on Greg’s name. With Greg, I think by the end of S3, he’s just doing it to piss off Lestrade; but I think it’s more a little running gag than anything else, as a nod to original canon where Lestrade never was given a first name, just simply the initial “G.” 

The solar system, however, we found out he deleted on purpose… BUT. By TAB, Sherlock has learned stuff about astronomy (”the obliquity of the ecliptic”). I personally think that this is because IT IS IMPORTANT TO JOHN, so Sherlock made it important to learn about it.

His sister’s own face, well… I have a biased belief that Eurus doesn’t really exist and that her appearance is like that of the random character of Lady Charmichael in TAB (which we later found out Sherlock stole her face from the stewardess on the plane). I don’t doubt “E” exists, but I still believe her face is that of the bus stop lady who is working for Mycroft. HER FACE IS THE ONLY ONE TRUE FACE, I think. The other “E’s” are faces stolen for alternative narratives in the unreliable narrations being told in S4; I’m still deciding who each other “E” is representing. I just feel that TFP is John’s TAB, and this is why Eurus has E’s face – John’s brain is making the association of “E works for Mycroft” and confusing it with “E is related to Mycroft and therefore Sherlock”. Mixed associations.


Identifying historical romances set outside the British Isles or North America can be a bit of a chore. Here I’ve put together a batch of stories located in one of my favourite countries, France.

Asterisks denote romances set partially (*) or mostly/entirely (**) in continental France as defined by its current borders, including Provence, Languedoc, etc.. Standard warnings apply to some of the older titles. As for diversity, a regrettable consequence of being a little-used geographical setting is that diverse characters remain rare even as boundaries have expanded elsewhere in the genre.

Night Fires by Karen Harbaugh **. French Revolution. Vampires with a unique twist, redemption.

Whisper His Name by Elizabeth Thornton *. Regency. Heroine opens book business, scholarly hero has secret profession, light suspense.

A Wheel of Stars by Laura Gilmour Bennett **. Medieval / Timeslip. Templars, Cathars, Inquisition, troubadours.

Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase *. Regency. Forced marriage, heroine-as-saviour, rakehell hero, clever repartee, perennial romance reader favourite.

The Last Arrow by Marsha Canham **. Medieval. Heroine is a skilled archer, swashbuckling adventure, Robin Hood & King John.

The Secret History of the Pink Carnation by Lauren Willig *. Regency / Contemporary. First in the Pink Carnation series. The dual narrative framework alternates between Eloise, a modern scholar researching “that demmed, elusive Pimpernel”, and British spies romping about in Napoleonic France.

Wicked Becomes You by Meredith Duran **. Victorian / Belle Époque. Jilted bride decides to ditch nice girl image, black sheep hero, road trip.

The Making of a Duchess by Shana Galen *. Georgian / First French Republic. First in a trilogy about French brothers. Governess, spies, rescue mission.

Storm Winds by Iris Johansen **. French Revolution. Dark suspense, graphic violence including rape (not involving h/h), class divide, Marie Antoinette.

Moonrise by Roberta Gayle **. Victorian / Second Empire. Art world, artist heroine, seafaring hero, poc h/h, Paris.

A Bed of Spices by Barbara Samuel **. Medieval. Forbidden love, Jewish hero, Christian heroine, hero is medical student, virgin hero (IIRC), Black Death.

Ruthless by Anne Stuart **. Georgian / Ancien Régime. First in the House of Rohan series. Rakehell hero, sexually abused heroine, bluestocking heroine, May-December.

The Forbidden Rose by Joanna Bourne **. French Revolution. Third in the Spymasters series – in which France is a recurring location - but chronologically the first. Secret identity, spies, suspense, sexually experienced heroine.

The Heart’s Wager by Gayle Wilson. Regency / Bourbon Restoration / The Hundred Days. Friends-to-lovers, physically scarred hero, heroine brought up in gambling den, spies.

King of the Castle by Victoria Holt **. Nineteenth century. Gothic. Heroine is an art restorer, château set amid vineyards, dead first wife, promiscuous hero.

Dance by Judy Cuevas (also known as Judith Ivory) **. Edwardian / Belle Époque. Independent heroine who produces and directs films; starchy, self-denying, head-of-the-family hero; heroine jilted hero’s brother. Their backstories are encountered in a connected book, Bliss. A third historical, Beast (as the title suggests, a Beauty and the Beast tale), takes place in France and on an ocean liner.

Don’t Tempt Me by Sylvia Day. Georgian / Ancien Régime. Fourth in the Georgian series. Erotic romance. Twin sisters, mistaken identity, spies, suspense, amnesia, rake hero.

Angélique, the Marquise of the Angels by Anne Golon **. 17th century. Not a standalone as the book finishes on a disconsolate cliffhanger and forms the first installment in an extended adventure romance series. Still, no list of historical romances set in France would be complete without this vintage classic. Long wildly popular in Europe, the Angélique series was known for its action-filled blend of intrigue, history, and lustiness, including pirates, slavery, and the court of the Sun King. In line with some earlier romances, expect a strongly heroine-centric storyline in which she (due to plot-spoiler circumstances) has more than one relationship yet recognises only one true love. If you enjoy Bertrice Small, Angélique may very well work for you. In addition, some of the books have been made into feature-length films, the first one twice (1960s and 2013).

A Midnight Dance by Lila DiPasqua **.17th century. Erotic romance. Loose retelling of Charles Perrault’s Cinderella, debt-ridden but resourceful heroine, childhood crush, privateer hero, acting troupe, deception, thievery, revenge.

The Protector by Madeline Hunter **. Medieval. Fifth in the Medieval series. Alpha heroine, warrior heroine, heroine prefers convent over marriage, alpha hero, honourable hero, sieges and battles, Black Death. I only recently discovered the story deals with Brittany, then an independent Duchy in the grip of succession struggles in which England and France aggressively meddled. Those familiar with my blog will probably not be surprised to learn that the Breton setting has made it shoot up to the top of my TBR. [ETA 11 Feb. 2017: Cannot disagree more with reviewers who’ve deemed the hero honourable. He’s an old school romance misogynist. The other major negative is the slut shaming and all other women being belittled unless they’re the heroine in another book by the author. Strong points include the fluid writing style, an interesting, smart, and capable heroine, and decent historical texture. Blood pressure warning re. said negatives. Hero: D (a few, small redeeming moments rescue him from an F). Heroine: A. Story: B.]

The Treasure Keeper by Shana Abé *. Georgian / Ancien Régime. Fourth in the Drakón series. Dragon shapeshifters, hero-in-pursuit, disabled hero, heroine betrothed to someone else, the-trouble-with-ghosts.

The Champion by Elizabeth Chadwick * (?). Medieval. Tournaments, separated lovers, miscarriage, court of King John. This is a romance that pulls toward romantic historical fiction (Chadwick later transitioned to biographical historical fiction).

Nine Coaches Waiting by Mary Stewart **. Since nearly seventy years have passed since its original publication, I’m now classifying this vintage Gothic romance, written and set in the 1950s, as a historical romance. Cinderella, governess, child-in-peril, hero who may or may not be a villain. Also set in France are Thunder on the Right, Stewart’s first effort and a very purple gothic (though published second), and Madam, Will You Talk, a taut, atmospheric romantic suspense in which the heroine’s superb driving ability plays a central role.

Maiden of Fire by Deborah Johns **. Medieval. Templars, Cathars, Inquisition, heroine with a secret mission, scribe heroine, hero belongs to enemy force, forbidden love.

The Prince of Midnight by Laura Kinsale *. Georgian / Ancien Régime. Friends-to-lovers, cross-dressing heroine, angry heroine, recluse hero, disabled hero, hero-in-pursuit, pet wolf, revenge. And yes, that’s Fabio on the original cover.

A Lady’s Secret by Jo Beverley *. Georgian / Ancien Régime. Malloren series but works as a standalone. Road trip, heroine in peril, kind and fun-loving hero, heroine born out of wedlock, famous but secret father, competent and adventurous heroine, scene stealing Papillon.

Surrender to a Stranger by Karyn Monk **. French Revolution. Rescue missions, commoner hero is spy, noblewoman heroine is betrothed to someone else, adventure, suspense, revenge. (Note that Goodreads and Amazon synopses are messed up, conflating two unrelated novels. For example, the hero’s name is Armand St. James, not Damien Powell.)

Rake Most Likely to Rebel by Bronwyn Scott **. Regency / July Monarchy. Fencing, secret identity, blackmail, cross-dressing heroine, heroine expert at her profession, duteous hero expected to marry someone else, hero not a rake despite book title.

every steve/tony argument ever

the world: is fucked and in immediate peril

tony: how about this pragmatic but morally dubious solution

steve: TONY NO that’s imperfect and therefore wrong

tony: ok, what should we do instead then?


anonymous asked:

As an, um, AMAB questioning person (I guess), I've sometimes wondered how much of my what-if-I'm-not-a-guy? questions/angst are a result of my wanting some way of articulating that my socialization was (and is) kind of harmful and stifling and I want out. Like, if there were more ways for me to talk about how being a guy has hurt me, would I still spend as much time wondering if I'd rather be a girl? I really don't know and it's frankly quite frustrating. (So, uh, data point?)

(Alternately: could it be that I “really am” trans/nb/____ and have a good deal of internalized transmisogyny, which manifests in my wanting to construct an alternative narrative whereby what I “really” want is just to be a cis guy with some decent, socially legible way of grappling with the downsides of male socialization? I don’t really feel *any* sort of innate gender (beyond the effects of being-gendered socially), so both explanations feel equally plausible to and for me personally.)            

Thanks for the data point, anon.

I think you’re asking those questions rhetorically, but if you’re seeking advice, feel free to send a followup ask or to message me, and I’ll be happy to help how I can. (Which I can’t promise will be very much. But I’ll try.)
The Right Builds an Alternative Narrative About the Crises Around Trump
On conservative media, President Trump’s supporters have used unfounded allegations, diversions and conspiracies to keep his troops behind him.
By Jeremy W. Peters

This was what I was afraid of. Under normal circumstances, the worse one’s decision, the more compelled one feels to defend it to the end. But these are no normal circumstances.

A backbone of Trump’s electorate voted not for a politician but for a savior. They will not abandon him, as it would mean abandoning the forlorn hope and desperate pride he represents. And in this postmodern age of choose-your-own-truth, I mean, -narrative, they need respect no paper or voice of record. Even if Fox turned towards respectability, Trumpsters would simply defect to more shadowy, fringy sources like Breitbart and Infowars or whatever else confirmed their conspiratorial and apocalyptic biases. And so Trump’s enablers, the real source of his power and political longevity, will not be feeling the pressure necessary for them to discard the buffoon. They still rely on his popularity with their bases more than he relies on them. They are caught in the Totentanz they devised and will stay on the floor however much damage they cause the country.

anonymous asked:

Hi there!! I'm trying to decide whether I want to write my story in third person or first person. Can you list some pros and cons of each? Thanks!! :)

When it comes to matters like this one, I don’t think pros and cons really exist. It’s a matter of what works best for your story and your characters. Therefore, I’ll point out a list of some of the most prominent aspects of the two perspectives, and leave it for you to decide what fits your story best.

First person perspective:

  • Direct connection between your character and your readers. Your readers will be “living” inside your character’s mind for as long as the story lasts, and therefore they will get to have a faster connection with the character they’re learning the story from. 
  • Limited information. Everything we learn is limited to what your character has experienced. Anything important that happens when your character is not present cannot be learnt by the reader unless someone describes the event to your character. (Assuming you are going to be writing from the perspective of only one character. This certainly doesn’t apply if you will be alternating between perspectives).
  • Subjective Narrative. With a first person perspective, your readers have less room to evaluate situations and characters, as their perspectives will always be clouded by the character’s. If you want your readers to judge situations and characters, you might have it harder if you choose to go with a first person narrative.
  • More intimate and realistic story. In real life, we live inside our own selves, and therefore, when we’re reading a story that’s written in first person narrative, we get a more realistic feeling of it. It’s like we’re actually inside the story, rather than just listening to it. 
  • Show don’t tell? It’s harder to show instead of telling when it comes to a first person narrative. It definitely can be done, but some books written from a first person perspective often end up with a lot more telling than showing - which isn’t always a drawback. Telling instead of showing is often done a lot more efficiently in books written from a first person perspective and you can often get away with telling more than showing when you’re going for a first person perspective rather than a third person one.
  • Too much introspection. When we are reading book written in first person, we often find ourselves dwelling inside the characters mind while they wonder about every single worldly problem and thinks about the meaning of their own life. Does it really matter to the story line? More often than not, no, it doesn’t. It might be great for character development, hence why introspection shouldn’t be completely eradicated, but it definitely slows down the story and takes the focus out of what really matters.

Third person perspective:

  • Possibility of omniscience. Of course, you can write from a third person perspective and still not have an omniscient narrator - that’s where third person limited comes in, in which case the advantages and drawbacks of its use would be similar to those of first person perspectives -, but here you can be omniscient and that can be both good and bad. It definitely makes it harder to create suspense - If you have an omniscient narrator and hide things from your readers they could have known all along, they might feel cheated. On the other hand, they can receive more knowledge than they would with a first person perspective or a third person limited one.
  • Character Emphasis. It gives you the opportunity to develop all your characters equally, have your readers know a bit about all of them and put emphasis on more than one person at the same time.
  • Too Much Information. When you have a God-like narrator, that knows everything about everyone, you often run the risk of providing the reader with information they definitely don’t need. You want to develop your characters and your settings so much that you forget to ask yourself whether the information you are including is actually relevant to the story line. While in first person narration you run the risk of too much introspection, here you run the risk of feeling like your readers need so much information that you end up giving them all at once. Space out your info dumps, if you’re going to go with this sort of perspective, and all will be well.
  • More quick scene transitions. Third person narration allows you to jump between scenes faster, because you can leave one character having dinner in New York and then pick up the story with another character back in London.
  • Distancing the readers and the characters. Again, this can be both good and bad. You have a harder job allowing your readers to connect with your characters, but at the same time you always allow them to judge them by their own values. You give your readers the freedom to form an opinion on your characters and settings that is not clouded by anyone’s perception but their own. 

Ultimately, try choosing what you think works best for your story and what fits your purpose best. Good luck!

For further reading:
The Right Builds an Alternative Narrative About the Crises Around Trump
On conservative media, President Trump’s supporters have used unfounded allegations, diversions and conspiracies to keep his troops behind him.
By Jeremy W. Peters

The part that I think really matters is here 

“Anyone who assumes widespread defections against the president in short order, Mr. Castellanos added, should understand that many of Mr. Trump’s fans are not eager to see a return to the establishment-dominated political order he promised to demolish.

“ ‘See how poorly it’s turned out for you? See how erratic and uncertain life is with Donald Trump? Come back!’ I don’t think so,” he added.

For many Trump loyalists, the issue is not whether his presidency is messy and chaotic and dysfunctional. Many of them seemed resigned long ago to the fact that it would be. The more relevant question is whether they see anyone else who is equipped to change Washington in the way Mr. Trump promised he would.”

So if we run an actual populist, some of those folks might just stay home.  



Little Game is Benny’s debut single and music video as a dark alternative pop narrative on gender roles and gender equality. The video demonstrates the skewed enforcement of falling into masculine and feminine archetypes. Available on iTunes now.

anonymous asked:

"My aim is to challenge all the preconceptions of underrepresented mothers with ambitious, alternative narratives. Something I as an avant-garde artist tried to do in the 2015 Oscar campaign." If this doesn't describe her pretentious ass perfectly then I don't know what does! lmao, skeptics as a group are way more creative and artistic then she ever wishes to be, not to point out our work ethic, motivation and loyalty to your colleagues, but she probably doesn't even know those things exist.

I don’t know about creative and artistic Nonny.  Weirdo might be both, but the way she goes about sharing her vision with the world is severely lacking.

Since she has been unemployed for so very long and her work is not really available for the unwashed masses to peruse, the least she could do is try harder next time she catches a break.  For example, if she’s about to read at an LL event, it would help if she went through the letter(s) assigned to her a few times beforehand; just so people won’t realise she’s not very good at reading and understanding how punctuation works.

It would also help her case if the next time she does a 15 minute project that takes her more than 3 months to prepare, she puts some work in before she actually shows up to present her work to the awaiting public.

anonymous asked:

If Robb Stark is so militarily adept, why didn't he recognise Roose Bolton's apparent incompetence at the Green Fork and it's aftermath?

I think there were several factors. The first is that communication between armies isn’t good at the best of times - look at what happened when Jaime and Tywin (or Jaime’s cavalry and Jaime’s infantry) got separated, for example. Unless both parties have a rookery that both know to write to (and even then, ravens can go awry), you’re down to riders trying to get across hundreds of miles of very dangerous territory. This only gets more complicated when Robb takes the goat path into the Westerlands and is essentially behind enemy lines, or when Roose is on the march from the Twins to Harrenhal and isn’t near a rookery.

The second is that communications can be controlled. Roose is in a very good opportunity to dictate the narrative of how the Green Fork went down, and when he’s both at the Twins and Harrenhal, he can control what goes out by raven. You would need a subordinate to have recognized that Roose intentionally threw the battle rather than making a forgiveable mistake, be willing to be wholly insubordinate by informing on his commanding officer to the king in violation of chain of command, and then get a rider all the way to Robb Stark without being noticed, and be believed when that rider gets there. 

The third has to do with expectations and perceptions. Roose Bolton stayed within the general framework of his orders at the Green Fork - he made a bunch of bad tactical choices, from failing to carry through with his night march to leaving the high ground to firing on his own men, but he didn’t violate Robb’s orders, and most importantly, Roose’s actions achieved the intended strategic effect by engaging with Tywin and allowing Robb to relieve Riverrun before Tywin could move to block him. So Robb doesn’t have any reason to perceive what happened at the Green Fork than the necessary sacrifice he thought it was.

Likewise, when Roose takes Harrenhal, he could plausibly say that A. it was the major enemy asset in the theater of war so it was good sense to take it, B. an allied commander had asked him to do it, and C. he wasn’t given orders to the contrary. Robb doesn’t have any reason to see this action as treasonous, and indeed the victory helps to obscure the pattern of Roose’s actions. It also helps that Robb is a bit distracted by Edmure’s actions at the time. 

It’s not until Duskendale that Robb has something that really rings false, and Robb immediately picks up on it, recognizing that Duskendale is a target of no strategic value:

When they brought him word of the battle at Duskendale, where Lord Randyll Tarly had shattered Robett Glover and Ser Helman Tallhart, he might have been expected to rage. Instead he’d stared in dumb disbelief and said, “Duskendale, on the narrow sea? Why would they go to Duskendale?” He’d shook his head, bewildered. “A third of my foot, lost for Duskendale?”

But here’s where Roose’s control of communications kicks in. Sitting at Harrenhal, Roose is the one sending Robb information about what happened. So Roose constructs an alternative narrative in which he had nothing to do with Duskendale:

“Your Grace is too kind. I suffered grievous losses on the Green Fork, and Glover and Tallhart worse at Duskendale.”

“Duskendale.” Robb made the word a curse. “Robett Glover will answer for that when I see him, I promise you.”

“A folly,” Lord Bolton agreed, “but Glover was heedless after he learned that Deepwood Motte had fallen. Grief and fear will do that to a man.”

Robb has no way of knowing this isn’t true, because Roose made sure that the men who could have contradicted him were either killed or captured. The only people present when Roose gave the orders to take Duskendale - through a raven, so it’s not like any of the men at Harrenhal could have talked to Glover’s army and heard about new orders, and even then those men were almost all Freys and Bolton men by that point - were Arya and Qyburn

The only, only way Robb could have heard differently is if Robett Glover had turned the ship around at Duskendale and headed for the Twins instead of White Harbor and gotten there ahead of the Red Wedding. Even then, odds are that Robett would have been seen as a rash incompetent looking to excuse his folly by making a scandalous accusation at his forgiving commanding officer. 

But even if Robb had believed Robett, the 5,000 Stark loyalists in Roose’s army were dead or captured, and Roose and Walder had Robb outnumbered two to one. The damage was already done. 

Book Club Discussion: “Feminist Theory” by bell hooks

Feminist Theory: From Margin to Center by bell hooks is the best feminist book I have read all year, and more so than any book I’ve ever read, it has given me an understanding of why many women have rejected feminism. Feminists often assume that the merits and benefits of feminism speak for themselves, that it is an identity and a movement which everyone should want to be a part of. This way of thinking, however, reflects racial and class bias.

The reason many women have rejected feminism (in the past and today) is generally not because of internalized misogyny or ignorance; many women reject feminism because mainstream feminist movement has continually rejected them. If we want to grow feminist movement and create real alternatives to our white supremacist capitalist patriarchy, mainstream feminism must change its priorities to be relevant to the lives of all women and people of all genders.

One of the first criticisms that hooks points to is the rhetoric of feminism as a movement to make women the social equals of men. We have to ask “Which men?” because even under patriarchy, systems like institutional racism, heterosexism, and classism mean that men benefit unequally. So are we saying that women should be the equals of men of their race? Are we saying that women should be equal to white, wealthy, heterosexual men? And if these white men are given this privileged status by a system which oppresses others, is being their equals worth the price of being part of that system of domination? It’s just not as simple as “I believe women should be treated the same as men.”

Effective feminist movement must take all of these factors into account. Trying to focus solely on sexism won’t get us anywhere significant because the experience of sexist oppression is heavily influenced by other intersecting oppressions. Pushing for reforms which would largely only effect privileged white women does very little to change the status quo which leaves so many other women behind or, in some cases, even worse off.

A movement that only benefits a privileged few is not an effective movement, no matter how well those few women do within the existing system. In fact, it is the system itself which we must change- the system which many of the privileged among us have been fighting so hard to be a part of.

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