literary gem

let us all take a moment to salute Edwin Lester Arnold, who dedicated his life to bequeathing the world with such literary gems as 

  • the adventures of an ANCIENT PHOENICIAN warrior who goes in and out of an unexplained state of suspended animation in order to be a witness to invasions or attempted invasions of England.  
  • a work of fiction set in modern day Rome wherein Lepidus the Centurion takes the reader on a journey of his civilization and life. 
  • a military man stands on a magic carpet which transports him to MARS and his adventures there; its “lukewarm reception led him to stop writing fiction.”

let us remember him - frater, ave atque vale!

Brianstorming for a Steven Universe AU where jeanmarco are in it. I think I am set with their gems.

Why Tarn is Roller masterpost

Because I’m in that kind of mood and on the vibe of Tarn feelings and also new issue just came out here have some meta. Hints everywhere spoilers galore!


In the preview it was established that Tarn’s mask has red glass instead of transparent/plain holes for optics, so that:

-or maybe for no one to notice the true color of your optics, Roller?

(shh Rung. That’s a good enough reason. We will talk about it later).

So, um, Roller, why so sad? Has something been bothering you lately?

How come Rung can see through a chestplate and precisely determine one’s sparktype is a clue for another longpost, but what about Tarn?

Green spark? Sounds like a point one percenter.

Oh, so that’s why you felt so put down: point one percenter without defining characteristic. Seems your gift has found you a bit later than you expected.

By the way, how old are you?

Wow rude. Were you-

Ok, question answered. See you watching it from there.

Ever heard about Megatron’s literary gem?

Sheesh, calm down, calm down. If I may, when and where was the first time you have heard of it?

Orion won’t suggest anything bad to read, that’s for sure.

You have any friends? Ones you respect so much you’ll remember them on your death bed?

*this one was obvious as it is but look! It’s a friggin’ panel-to-panel reference. It screams to me on a deep inner level of joy and satisfaction.*

So, according to memories, Roller and Tarn are the same. How come?

Remember that time when Rodimus and team arrived in the past and screwed things up really bad?

Roller got injured, as we see, rather seriously. Notice the face blow. Eye is wounded, but the chin remains intact.

Then he wakes up while being reconstructed into a new body by… Whom? A batch of rogue Decepticons? Nah, too little resources. Clawy hands, nasty faces… T-the Institute? please, please let it be the Institute. shadowplay or such. it would probably not be this as the same trope was used on Shockwave but my god. it will make things so less wicked. Notice the face is now covered with the mask.

How come Orion didn’t save in time one of his most trusted troops?

Orion has been doing the right thing, but now, ah you see, now there’s Rodimus and he is just about to say goodbye with the means of Chromedome-

-and go *poof*. Which leaves Orion and the rest of his team wonder:

Trailcutter, you meant to ask “Where’s Roller?” Of course not. Poor thing, you forgot you have lost him. Just as the rest of the team.

And ta-da! That’s how Tarn was born.

But wait, there’s one thing: the fanservice chin Tarn just appeared to have under his mask (not to mention the presence of faceplate in general. Even if he was hiding some injury under his mask, it must have been on the upper part of the face: the chin is intact.):

Not Fulcrum level awesome, but it has that little detail. Where have I seen it before? It probably wasn’t issue 36 cover because then-

-wait, OH SHI-

All listed above is purely an opinion and corresponds with canon only in the way of hints provided.

Who else thinks that Roller and Tarn are the same person please raise your hand. I think I’ve put in all the references I could find.

UPD: Thank you for reading! Several missed hints are collected in this post.

desintegrer-deactivated20170225  asked:

Hi! I love your blog! I just wanted to ask, how do you effectively read a book? Reading in general is great holistically and it helps you improve your writing. But whenever I read, I always feel like I'm not gleaning anything that helps with my own work. Any advice on that? Thank you sm! xx

Yes, most writers have an opinion on this. But it’s hard finding resources that address your valid issue that don’t feel like being stuck in senior English Lit class on a warm summer day and looking out the window and seeing everyone else having fun and pointing at you. 

[please note, some of the works referenced here may contain violence and other triggers; everything is duly noted and behind a link.

The problem could lie in what you’re reading, how you’re reading or why you’re reading. I’m going to post some thoughts and some resources that hopefully will help you with your diagnosis. 

Why are you reading? When bogged down with stuff they have to read, people often react by then turning to fun and fluff to relax. Perfectly understandable. The what that’s missing for a lot of people is reading in between. Something challenging that doesn’t feel like trying to climb an 80-foot brick wall. A different genre. Lit fic for adults (though I loathe that distinction, but the publishing industry doesn’t so there it is) instead of YA or NA. If you’re 15 or older, really, there shouldn’t be a problem with reading a good modern literary gem like The Historian or The Book Thief or Isabel Allende or Orhan Pamuk. And 15 is just arbitrary. There are 13 year olds who could devour these books and get more out of it than a supposedly educated 35 year old. 

Now we get to how. Here are some tips and links for finding a way to read like a writer. 

Stephen King Himself said: “Constant reading will pull you into a place… where you can write eagerly and without self-consciousness.” Meaning you will, after reading stimulating prose, start to internalize good writing and that makes it easier for you to produce YOUR good writing. Again, what stimulates your creative senses is not likely to be the same thing that stimulates your best friend and writing buddy’s, or mine. Keep reading, you will find it. 

This is a pretty good checklist to get you started. 

Here’s an excellent list of books and stories (more on those in a minute) to read with the all important why – as in, what you as a writer can get out of reading that work. 

One of the tips I see mentioned repeatedly is to just go ahead and rip off something you just read and write it your way, or write your own story in that style. I agree. Go ahead and copy. Read a novel or a chapter or a short story and write it your own way. Fanfic Hemingway, ffs!  

Publishing does not have to be the goal for everything you write. You need to be able to write for the sheer orgasmic joy of putting words on paper. Write for yourself every now and then. You don’t need to silence just your inner editor; sometimes, you need to tell your inner lawyer to stfu, too. 

Something I’m noticing at the back of books of multiple genres in recent years is a section with questions for book clubs. You might find some good, specific questions to help you think about the Big Ideas of the book. Also, try googling interviews from the authors about the book you just read. See what they were thinking. Did you get that out of their work? If not, why do you think you saw it differently? The answer to that question might just be you, discovering your own voice.

As mentioned above: One format I think is underappreciated and not read enough for simple pleasure is the short story. A good short story can teach you economy of description, the evocation of mood and feelings, and all about beginning, middle and end. I can give this advice to all writers, without equivocation: Read short stories. 

There are free online journals, really cheap (like 99 cents) literary journals on Kindle and other services, classic stories for free at the library … Even if you never intend to write short stories, READ SHORT STORIES!!

Here are some suggestions for short stories with explanations of how they can help you as a writer. Two are available online for free, the others should be at your local library, or they will know how to get them for you. Blatant opinion: If you don’t read Alice Munro, you are missing out on life. 

And this just hit my email yesterday: Three very short stories by Syrian author Zakaria Tamer. They are crammed with violence, religion, sex and just plain WOW. His use of the absurd to showcase hypocrisy, both individually and by the state, is simply brilliant. Note how he uses structure and dialogue and voice in mere paragraphs. I also highly recommend subbing to Electric Literature for access to great reading for writers. 

So this topic can never be discussed without further props to the master, Stephen King, and his book On Writing. He has lists of books he’s read and refers to both in the back and now online

One last note for the brave and determined who get this far down:  I recently finished (in two days) John Rember’s MFA in a Box: The Why to Write a Novel. I have to say, I am still raw and hollowed out from reading it. It is a highly philosophical look at writing and being a writer, and baldly psychotherapeutic in many places, too. He’s a bit old school, even for my old ass, but noting that is one way to begin to understand a writer’s voice. 

The two chapters that resonated the most with me were Writing Violence and Writing Grief. Not at all what you are thinking, but it is definitely not a book for the squeamish or anyone afraid to look inside their own dark hearts. He discusses quite a few books from other authors, and I’m not ashamed to say I went and bought three of them (so far!) to read and digest like he did. Knowing why you are writing can help you choose what you are reading to figure out why you are reading and how that can help you. 

If you find something that is of use to you on this issue, do share! 

– mod aliya

I really need to stop following the comments in that 'write every day or else' post...

Because I am so tempted to ask so many of these people who are on team ‘It’s a craft, it’s a job, you’re only a Real Writer if that’s how you make your living’ people if they live up to their own hype or if they are, in fact, high school and college students who manage to write every day because they are still primarily acclimated to an academic setting where of fucking COURSE they write every day.

And this is blatant elitism of the exact kind that I am fighting against, but it comes to mind anyway (which tells you just how deeply this is rooted in our culture and definitions of 'writer’) - I want to ask them if they’re published. I want to ask where I can buy their work. I want to ask where I can read reviews by and join in discussions with other readers. I want to know why I’ve never heard of them.

Because even though I know it’s fucking WRONG to couple 'writer’ with 'job’ as if the only kind of writer is a writer who attains capital success by their writing, my tendency is to do so anyway.

This whole 'inspiration doesn’t pay the bills’ thing? Yes, that’s true.

But why is 'paying the bills’ presumed to be the ultimate goal and best test of Real Writing?

Was Charles Dickens not a writer when he was working a day job as a label-sticker?

Let’s not EVEN get started on the other half of this thread, who are pulling up the 'It’s better to write one ~Properly Good Literary Gem~ than it is to write a dozen mediocre potboilers!’ because who the fuck is THAT helping? What if 'incredibly well-selling bullshit’ is someone’s actual, intentional aim? What if someone would rather be Stephanie Meyer or Dan Brown than William Faulkner or Junot Diaz, because the former authors are crying all the way to the bank about how terrible their writing is?

What if a young author would rather win a Lambda or Coretta Scott King Award or a Nebula or a Hugo than a Pulitzer?

People are such assholes about writing.
How To Avoid The Writing Critique From Hell

You’ve been burning the midnight oil, feverishly writing and rewriting. You’ve carefully weighed every word of your latest work until you’re satisfied you’ve created a literary gem. Or have you? You might start to wonder – maybe, instead of a diamond, you’ve just created a big lump of… coal. When you spend so much time reviewing your own writing, it can be hard to judge your own work objectively.

What you need is a good critique partner (aka beta reader), someone who can give you a fair, unbiased opinion of your writing and useful advice. What you don’t need is someone on a power trip whose demeaning, unconstructive criticism is only meant to hurt, not help.