my piece for the @notyourpuppetsfanzine!!! I was sort of inspired by not only the bubble, but my own childhood/younger teen years/general time period of when I was in a uh, bad situation. I tended to “escape from reality” (gravity falls pun intended haha) by daydreaming, doing art, and coming up with stories. I thought about how I’d kind of feel when you wrap yourself up in that fun, fake world, and it just makes the real world and the reality of your situation feel worse. I mean yeah it’s nice to have an escape, just everything feels dull in comparison until you get a real escape and the world becomes as bright as your fantasies. anyway, this project was really such an amazing thing to work on- really, I can’t put into words how much it means to me, not only seeing it complete but by seeing the heartfelt response to it. I never thought people could care that much, but I guess people surprise you in the best ways sometimes. <3
b99 hiding melissa fumero's pregnancy:
aight okay this is chill... Amy wears pantsuits that we can alter to hide her belly, she carries huge bags, she loves doing paperwork which means she can sit behind her desk a lot... we got this y'all,, hey you know what why not throw an 'Amy Goes Undercover As A Pregnant Lady' plot in the mix for when she gets super pregnant we're so good at this you guys
b99 hiding chelsea peretti's pregnancy:
um... you know what? maybe Gina can change up her fashion sense to baggy clothes. oh that doesn't work? okay. guess we can just make Gina pregnant. I mean sure pregnancy freaks her out but she's Gina Linetti. No one should presume to know her, not even us, the show that created her
b99 IF stephanie beatriz gets pregnant:
okay you know what fuck this!! Rosa's clothes r basically a second layer of skin?? if skin were made out of black leather?? she stands up all the damn time too we can't hide this behind no desk!! plus we already did the undercover as pregnant lady thing with amy!! what we gon do if Rosa feels like beating someone up??? everyone will see the huge watermelon on her tum and JUST. why we doing this? we don't even get emmys for this crap
I really wish people on the internet didn’t throw around mental disorder diagnoses without actually understanding them like…mislabeling something on a site like this just misleads a ton of other impressionable ppl, and it’s irritating to see someone wrongly label symptoms or justify a mislabeling with this front of infallible authority when they’re just…wrong haha
It’s better to be cautious with labeling something a disorder when you don’t actually know if that’s what it is. That includes your favorite character or someone else’s symptoms…like it’s one thing to recommend researching a disorder/asking a professional about it or having a headcanon or something, but just, remember to be humble about it
I’m in a really bad situation at the moment and it’s really hard for me to even write this, I’m not one to usually ask or even open up when help is needed but this is really urgent and apparently this is all I have left.
So my mum was recently diagnosed with a disability called MS which is basically like brain damage and it affects the whole body, she had to leave her job because she’s in so much pain and she was on sick pay for a while which did help but now she’s not getting any money and even the government won’t give her money.
Whether it runs in your family or you are self taught, a witch is a witch is a witch. Many practitioners of the craft do, however, show signs of the gift in early childhood. For people born in families either unfamiliar or opposed to the craft, these signs often go unnoticed, neglected (or in the worst case, punished). For those who are familiar, it can be heartwarming to see a child take after you, or at least witness a free spirit thrive.
Here are common signs NBWs sometimes experience as children :
Odd dreams/sleep habits:
*Not to be confused with any underlying health conditions* I’ve heard many people say that one of the earliest signs that they (or their parents) noticed was abnormal dreams or sleep. Although all children usually experience odd dreams/nightmares/sleepwalking, there may sometimes be more too it than meets the eye. This can start anywhere from the infant stage to young adulthood. For me personally it started out as “sleepwalking” while still in the crib, which later turned into strange dreams and eventually clairvoyance. Chronic or reoccurring odd dreams are probably the most common sign for many. Dreams with strange figures, creatures, individuals, symbolism, or even unfamiliar languages and deceased ancestors are potential flags.
Children getting Deja Vu in excess, or having the ability to obtain strange knowledge from seemingly nowhere may be showing signs of clairvoyance. This goes beyond basic intuition. Clairvoyance can manifest in many different ways. It could be from dreams, or simply getting “feelings” (good or bad vibes) in certain situations. This typically gets stronger throughout puberty, but may develop much earlier or later in some.
A child taking a natural interest in witchy things is a pretty solid sign. For instance, when I was in third grade I became completely obsessed with herbal medicine for no apparent reason. I was just great at memorizing plants and their uses. Other common obsessions may be the supernatural in general, or perhaps the use of certain symbols in art. Young children may scribble pentagrams or other symbols they feel drawn to in excess. A child may draw strange or reoccurring art of otherworldly places, things, and beings.
*not to be confused with symptoms of mental illness! This is most common with very small children that typically outgrow it. Older children who ‘keep’ imaginary friends are usually evaluated by medical professionals to insure health.*
When people think of imaginary friends they often imagine a pegasus or a quirky, colorful character. These would be considered normal to most, but some “imaginary friends” could be described as… unsettling. A child may claim to speak to one or many different imaginary friends. These beings are sometimes described as resembling people or animals that once existed. A child may also describe what these characters say and do. Children may mysteriously have knowledge about something odd, and claim that their “imaginary friend” informed them. There are some who believe that small children can easily see through the veil, and therefore are able communicate with the other side more effectively than adults.
Signs of being an ‘empath’ can start very young. Children with the ability to easily tame wild or feral animals may be using these skills to do so. These children often come off as being mature for their age. They are usually levelheaded and caring of others. Their understanding of emotion may also make them good at lying, or occasionally manipulative. Negative energy affects them very badly, causing stress. This often causes these children to be more fond of animals than other children. Children with strong empathy usually enjoy pleasing others and making others happy. They thrive best in positivity and don’t take criticism well. This trait follows children into adulthood and can sometimes be difficult to manage.
Other General Signs:
A deep love for nature. A highly active imagination. A fascination with the unknown or supernatural. The urge to heal. An effortless respect for plants and animals. Appearing to be ‘lost in their own world’. A natural knack for herbalism, divination, ect. Seeming wise beyond their years. Abilities that appear otherworldly. Creating strange superstitions or stories, and probably much more that I haven't covered.
Got any feedback/advice/links for someone who wants to make lengthy, relatively action-less dialogues between characters more than just “‘Loren ipsum,’ he said.” “'Ipsum lorem’, she replied.” for forty paragraphs?
No problem! I love dialogue, so I’m happy to be of assistance in this department.
Here are my personal rules of thumb:
1. Allow the dialogue to show the character’s personality.
If you really think about your conversations, it can be telling exactly how much of someone’s personality can shine through when they speak.
Allow your character’s persona, values, and disposition to spill over when they speak, and it will make for a significantly more interesting read for you and your reader.
For example: let’s take a look at a mundane exchange, and see how it can be spruced up by injecting it with a good dose of personality.
“How was your day, by the way?” asked Oscar, pouring himself a drink.
“Not too bad,” replied Byron. “Cloudy, but warm. Not too many people.”
“How was your day, by the way?” asked Oscar, pouring himself a drink.
“Ugh. Not too bad,” groaned Byron, draping himself on the couch. “Warm, but dreary. Gray clouds as far as the eye could see. Not anyone worth mentioning out this time of year.” A pause. “Well, except me, of course.”
“Hmmph,” said Oscar, glancing over his shoulder. “If it were me, I wouldn’t want it any other way.”
Isn’t that better? Already, the audience will feel as though they’ve gotten to know these characters.
This works for longer dialogue, too: allow the character’s personal beliefs, life philosophy, and generally disposition to dictate how they talk, and your readers will thank you.
Of course, this example is also good for giving the reader a general sense of what the characters’ relationship is like. Which brings me to my next point:
2. Allow the dialogue to show the character’s relationship.
Everyone is a slightly different person depending on who they’re around. Dynamic is an important thing to master, and when you nail it between two characters, sparks can fly.
Work out which character assumes more of the Straight Man role, and which is quicker to go for lowbrow humor. Think of who’s the more analytical of the two and who’s the more impulse driven. Who would be the “bad cop” if the situation called for it.
Then, allow for this to show in your dialogue, and it will immediately become infinitely more entertaining.
“Alright,” said Fogg, examining the map before him. “Thus far, we’ve worked out how we’re going to get in through the ventilation system, and meet up in the office above the volt. Then, we’re cleared to start drilling.”
Passepartout grinned. “That’s what she said.”
“Oh, for the love of God – REALLY, Jean. Really!? We are PLANNING a goddamn bank robbery!”
Some more questions about dynamic to ask yourself before writing dialogue:
Who is more likely to talk and who is more likely to listen?
Who would talk with their mouth full of food and who would politely wait to swallow?
Is their relationship fraternal/sororal? If so, who would be the “little sibling?”
Is one of them a bit of a mother/father figure to the other?
Who more frequently gets irritated with who?
Who has the more understated sense of humor? Who’s a bit more juvenile?
Who’s better educated? Does it show when they speak?
Who’s a bit more pretentious/full of themselves?
Who interrupts more?
Who swears more?
This can also be a valuable tool to cluing your reader in on who the characters are as people:
3. Think about what this dialogue can tell the reader.
It’s better to fill the reader in more gradually than to waist your valuable first chapter on needless exposition, and dialogue is a great way to do it.
Think about what your characters are saying, and think about ways in which you can “sneak in” details about their past, their families, and where they came from into the discussion.
For example, you could say:
Tuckerfield was a happy-go-lucky Southern guy with domineering parents,
and bore everyone to death.
Or you could have him say:
“Sheesh. All this sneakin’ around in the woods late at night reminds me of being back in Kansas. Good times, man, good times.” There was a pause, before he added, “‘Course, it wasn’t nearly so fun when I came home late for curfew and had to sleep on the front step, but y’know. Life happens.”
Isn’t that much better than the omnipresent monotone?
Dialogue is also a great way to fill in potential plot holes early on, by having your characters talk them out and explain them.
Moreover, dialogue can also be used to foreshadow, offer relevant hints about the climax, or provide information necessary for the resolution.
So use it wisely!
4. Sprinkle in mini-actions throughout.
Even in actionless dialogue, no one actually does nothing. In my case, for example, I stim a lot. I play with my hair. I play with eating utensils. It’s probably very annoying for those around me, but you get the point.
Less fidget-y folks might not do this as much, but they rarely sit totally still during conversations, either. So occasionally add in these mini-actions, and it will make your characters feel a bit less like disembodied voices or floating heads.
Jo leaned back in her chair rolling her stiff neck from sitting still for so long. “…So the way I see it,” she continued. “Even if Pheris Beuller’s Day Off didn’t take place in Cameron’s imagination, Pheris was clearly a sociopath whose behavior shouldn’t be glamorized.”
“Ha. As if.” Avery paused to sip her root beer. “Pheris,” she began, raising an index finger. “Was clearly emblematic of counterculturist movements such as the Beat Generation, and his disregard for the capitalistic dogmas imposed upon younger generations is something to be admired.”
“For Christ’s sake, will you two lighten up?” scoffed Leo, counting out bills for the pizza. “We were talking about which movie we wanted to watch tonight. Jesus.”
5. Remember how people actually speak.
In real life conversations, people don’t speak in paragraphs. Alright, some people might, and this can actually be interesting as the personality aspect of a certain type of character.
But generally speaking, people don’t speak in paragraphs, or as though they’re writing thought-out prose or letters.
In real conversations, people stutter. They laugh at their own jokes, repeat words or phrases, and lose their train of thought.
Naturally, you don’t have to illustrate in your writing exactly how chaotic and mundane human speech can be, as writing would be pretty boring in general if it was strictly limited to miming reality. But it’s good to keep in mind that your characters are talking, not writing in purple prose.
“When I was a young boy, my mother and I had a most tumultuous relationship,” said Marcus. “She saw me as a hallmark of her past failures, and took every opportunity to remind me as such.”
“My mom, when I was kid, we had what you’d call a sort of tumultuous relationship,” said Marcus. “Nothing I ever did was right for her. She, uh – I think she saw me as sort of a hallmark of her past failures. Took every opportunity to remind me of that.”
Which of these is more organic, more easy to visualize, and more telling of character? Unless the point of this dialogue is to illustrate that Marcus is a gentleman crook of some kind with pristine speaking mannerisms, I’m going to say the latter.
Best of luck, I hope this helps, and happy writing! <3
Is dual wielding (like two swords, a sword and a knife or two knives) an actual effectiv fighting style or just something that looks cool??
With two swords, not really. There’s a few stray examples. It’s not so much ineffective as incredibly difficult. With that in mind, you can absolutely learn how to do this as an exhibition technique. Which, yes, ends up in the range of something that looks cool.
A sword and an off hand dagger has a lot of utility. The off hand dagger actually becomes a defensive tool.This can range from something like a stiletto, used to deflect an incoming strike, or it can include a swordbreaker, which depending on circumstances might simply hold your opponent’s blade in place while you turn them into goulash with your sword.
It’s probably worth remembering that the parrying dagger is more common when dealing with lighter blades, while sword breakers were more common when dealing with heavier, slower, blades.
Dual daggers are a legitimate, hyper-aggressive, knife fighting option. You’re trading any kind of defense for more opportunities to attack. When the user has the element of surprise it can make a bad situation so much worse, but if their foe can respond, it can go wrong for the dual wielder very quickly.
If you’re wondering how a knife can go from being a defensive tool to an offense option, it has to do with the ranges you’re engaging at. Incidentally, a swordsman with an off hand dagger does have the option to attack at extremely close ranges where they can’t attack with their sword.
I know we’ve said this before, but weapons have specific ranges. Get too close, and you can’t use them anymore. A sword works best at a little over arm’s length. For example: A sword won’t do much good
while you’re lying on top of your foe. On the other hand, if you can reach out and touch someone, knives are always good to go. The advantage for a sword is it will add 36-40 inches to your reach.
It’s also worth remembering that a sword with an off-hand pistol was a real option up into the 19th century. You’d open an encounter by putting a bullet in someone, and then use the sword.