not structurally sound

anonymous asked:

tip for learning another language? i wanna learn french so badly

Start small, I guess? Start with the basics. Present tense. Pronouns. How to introduce yourself. Immerse yourself in the language, too. The sounds, the structures… You can’t get familiar with a language if you’re never in contact with it. Motivation is a big factor, too. Practise. It’s the key. 

There are a lot of apps to get the basics and practise regularly ;)

so Shire-talk is canonically a very different dialect of Westron than what Gondorians or Elves or whatever speak and some of the hobbits can code switch between the two and it’s extremely interesting to see how Tolkien portrays it

I’ve just gotten to the part where Frodo meets Faramir, and the difference between how he talks to Faramir and how he talks to Sam, for instance, is v noticable

with Sam he’s a lot more casual and even slightly more modern (for the value of 1954, not 2017) vs with Faramir where he switches to this very formal, quite archaic to our ears (“seven companions we had”)

and then Sam himself doesn’t seem comfortable speaking this prestige dialect (his style includes rather more general “vernacular” features common across regional nonliterary English dialects) - probably bc unlike Frodo he was not given the type of education that would lend itself to learning how to speak it comfortably - so there’s this clash between how Faramir talks to them and how Sam talks back

there’s also the bit where Theoden meets Merry and Pippin, and Merry greets him in very high formality, Pippin addresses Gimli casually bc they’re friends, then turns to Theoden and switches to the formal style, they both talk some more to him, and then after he’s gone Pippin turns to Merry and says Theoden was a “fine old fellow, very polite” (in the more casual style)

In that one scene you have a lot of style switching depending on the person they’re addressing and their status and relationship to the hobbits, but, for instance, Gimli’s sentence structure sounds more like the formal dialect even when he’s happily berating them and calling them villains, probably because he doesn’t use Shire-talk

basically: you can tell this dude was a linguist


スタジオ生出演、羽生に聞く by hana02015

Rudimentary Japanese translation of some interesting points from Yuzu’s recent interview because it’s quite comprehensive and I’m not sure if someone’s subbing it~~ (note: my Japanese is far from perfect so corrections are welcome- this is more of the ‘gist’ of the conversation and not word for word)

  • Said his season began with injury so he was essentially starting from behind the line, but also because of the hard times, he was able to grow
  • Re: Worlds - announcer praised his perfect FS and Yuzu said it was to the point where people were asking if he failed the short on purpose to trigger his fighting spirit lol but he admits that he probably wouldn’t have skated the FS with that sort of spirit if he had done well at the short so he needs to keep improving
  • Re: WTT Yuzu said doesn’t usually get the chance to watch other people’s performances from close by. Seeing the ladies skate so cleanly, he realised that the high level of this era of competition, where even the smallest mistake will cause you to drop in the rankings. In the Mens, it’s not simply that you have to jump quads, you also can’t miss. He said that was very instructive and he learned a lot
  • Re: New Quad Era’ and the 4A. Yuzu said he’s tried it during practice in the off-season but it’s difficult – says it’s a special jump (due to the entry method) with high risk and so he has to consider risk of injuries etc. when practising it
  • TV station made a hologram/projection of Yuzu landing a 4A. Yuzu: ‘whoaa this is cool, I want to jump with it’
  • They say he has to jump 17cm higher than for the 3A. Yuzu: ‘huh, it sounds quite high but it’s…kind of really just my hair isn’t it?’ He’d also need to land 1.1m further than 3A and rotate 10% faster. Yuzu fairly unfazed: ‘Looking at it now, I feel like I…can probably jump that?’ and thanks them because he feels like he can visualise it now, thanks to the hologram lol
  • Yuzu’s old (first?) skating teacher was all like: ‘I feel like conversation about quints is coming closer’ lololol
  • Yuzu doesn’t feel particularly unnerved/scared that the sQuad are younger than him. Said he knew Shoma since very young and though Shoma is a kouhai, after fighting through the competitions together, he also sees Shoma as a nakama ( ; u ; )
  • more discourse on quads: Yuzu says what helps you land the quads is not really young age/experience but ‘sense’ for the jumps
    • The next part was hard for me to understand since I didn’t pick up on all the words but I think the gist of it is that successful jumping comes down to each individual and if you have the instinct for it, a ‘challenger’ can come from anywhere
    • 最終的はそれぞれの個人の体((退学に合わせたもの)))??? idk guys soz lmao
  • SHOWED THE QUAD LUTZ : D
  • They were like ‘can you…land the lutz in practice? should we put a circle or triangle?’ and yuzu laughed and was like ‘t-triangle….’, implying his Lutz isn’t perfect yet 
  • ‘It’s a hard jump but it’s fun! Since the season is finally over and we’re finally free from competitions, I wanted to try it.’
  • Says he’s not going to put the Lutz in the Olympic program - says having a lot of quad varieties does not mean you can win
  • they talked a bit about the 3/11 earthquake and Yuzu said bc he had the experience of losing his home-rink and still remembers the hard times that followed, he’s always quite happy and grateful to be able to practice in a rink
  • Has absolutely no plan for Pyeongchang at the moment LMAO
  • first plan for off season………wants to improve a lot of skating skills (#typical), esp 4Lz and the 3Lz because 3Lz went a bit weird (bc he’s practising 4Lz?) lmaooo
  • Goal for next season: ‘Towards perfection’ - 理想の先へ (literally: towards the ideal destination but he implies he means ‘beyond’ the ideal). He’d characterise this season (with the Loop) as a season of getting closer towards the ideal. Next season he wants to surpass the current ‘ideal’ he has. People say you shouldn’t have limits but Yuzu thinks it’s good to have limits, but if you set your own limits, you should set them higher than you’re able to achieve right now (I think? I’m not entirely confident I’m hearing it right)

when will dreamworks give me the accidental kiss trope between lance and keith cmon chop chop!

The ultimate masterpost

**This is a list of helpful sites pulled from multiple masterposts. I will be updating this as I find new things.** 

IMPORTANT!!!!!!!!! I KNOW THE LINKS AREN’T SHOWING UP IF ANYONE ON HERE KNOWS WHY THAT IS PLEASE TELL ME ASAP! IF YOU GO AND EDIT THE POST SO FAR IT SHOWS THE LINKS BUT I HAVE NO IDEA WHY THEY WILL NOT SHOW UP ON THE ACTUAL POSTS

**If something doesn’t work let me know.** Thank you!

**If something belongs to you and you want credit let me know. I tried to make all the links go to a specific site. But I’m happy to give you credit if you see something that connect back to you.**

SAT/ACT

ACT Masterpost
FREE MATERIAL
Vocab

AP’s Non-Specific 

For every high school student studying an AP test 
FREE MATERIAL (some SAT/ACt stuff too)
Study guides

AP’s Specific

Art History
Smarthistory: a multimedia web-book about art and art history
Course-notes
Barrons pdfs

Biology
AP Biology Exam Guide
Chapter Review
Giant Review Sheet
Crash Course 

Calculus AB & BC
Cheatsheet (AB & BC)
Stuff You MUST Know Cold for AP Calc (AB)
If you see that, do this (AB)

Chemistry
AP Chemistry Notes
Podcasts
Quick Review
Periodic Table

Comparative Government and Politics
Government Comparisons
Cramsheet
Study Sheet (opens as word doc)

Computer Science
Review: Part 1

English Language
Rhetorical Strategies
AP Language Review

Environmental Science
Vocab to Know
Tips
APES Review

European History
STUDY GUIDES
Exam Review Sheets
Tom Richey 

French Language
Cram packet

Human Geography
Course-notes

Macroeconomics
Every Graph You Need To Know (YouTube)
Cram packet

Microeconomics
Study guide

Psychology 
sparknotes study guide
hella good review sheets
ton of flashcards woah
mind map of social psych
rough outline of the year
psychologists to know
crash course ~ hank green
intro to psych post
free textbook resources
study playlists help u
bunch of review materials
very good cram packet
lots of notes from a post
outline of erikson’s theory
mind map of disorders
how to stay motivated!!

Physics B & C
Equations (C Mech)
Unit Notes ©
Unit Notes ©
Equations © 

Statistics
Cram packet
Inference Procedures
AP Stats formulas

U.S. Government
Cheat Sheet
Review Materials
Tom Richey 

U.S. History
Cram Packet: part 1, part 2
The Giant AHAP Review
Unit study guides
Quizlet sets
The Comprehensive AP US History Study Guide
The man that saved me Part 1 Part 2

World History
Cram Packets and Review Sheets
Cram packets by era
Course-notes

General Subject’s

English Help
Cliffsnotes
Sparknotes
No Fear Shakespeare
How to Write a Essay (X) (X) (X) (X) (X) (X)
What makes a good Essay
How to Edit Yourself
Editing Checklist
Trouble Reading? Tips (X) (X) (X)
Writing Masterpost (X) (X) (X) (X) (X) (X) (X) (X)
Other things to help your Writing  (X) (X) (X) (X) (X) (X) (X) (X)

Languages 
Duolingo
Achieving Proficiency

Math Help
Mathway (type in your problem and it solves it)
Square Root Calculator
Cube Root Calculator
Expression Simplifier
Helps you with Math
Easy unit converter
Any calculator you need
Algebra Solver
Scientific Calculator 
Cheat Sheet 

Science Help
All about space
Guides for more than 5,500 animal species
Improve you Geography knowledge
vast collection of historic images and videos
Symbols and their meanings
Comprehensive site for genetics and evolution
Lectures 
Lab Write Ups

Writing Help
Free Microsoft Word Equivalent
Writing Software Master post
Cant Remember A Word?
Bibliography Maker
Social Media Citation Guide
Earn A Cute Picture Of A Kitten For Writing
Writers Block?
Check Your Writing for Spelling and Grammatical Errors
Coffee Shop Sounds
Essay Structure Guide
Want To Know Who You Write Like?
Remember the Word
Alternatives to Said
Great Inspiration
Getting Inspired
Free Microsoft Word alternative
Dealing with writer’s block
Lay vs. lie
When to change paragraphs
Music for writing
Research and reading
How to write a kickass essay with ½ of the stress
How to write an essay
Guide to writing a basic essay
Essay writing: the basics
What makes a good essay?
How to google? (1) (2)
Writing tips
Harvard Writing Resources
Synonyms Masterpost
can’t find the right word?
Hemingway an online editor (It’s awesome)

Other Useful Stuff 

Citing
Bibme
Son of Citation Machine
Owl Purdue
How to write Bibliography

College tips
make a to do+doing+done board (I just did this and it is very helpful)
print sources nicely (1) (2)
recipes based on ingredients - recipepuppy
popular new headlines - newsmap.jp
ted.com
speed read - spreeder.com
white noise - simplynoise.com
plan sleep time - sleepyti.me
google like a boss - png / jpg
planetebook.com/ebooks 
readanybook.com
prezi.com 
collegepackinglist.com
Tips for college freshman
Know before college 
Preparing for a lecture

Productivity 
30/30 (app)
Essential productivity apps for any student*
Top 5 productivity apps for iOS (video)*
Top 5 productivity apps for Android (video)*
StayFocusd
Time Warp
Self Control (mac) blocks websites
The science of productivity (video)
The science of procrastination and how to manage it (video)
7 brain hacks to improve your productivity (video)
The simple science of getting more done (in less time)
Productivity tips
About power naps
How to pull an all-nighter effectively

Studying (Currently long but I will sort through at a later point)
Answering multiple choice questions
Apps for students
Basics for Efficient Studying
BBC Bitesize
Calculators
Check spelling and grammar
Coffitivity- sounds of a cafe
Convert Anything To Anything
Cornell note taking method
Coursera- Online courses for free.
Create flowcharts, network diagrams, ect.
Creating Effective Exam Cheat Sheets
Defeating Procrastination
Essay writing
Exam survival tips
Finals Help Guide
Finals survival guide
Flashcards
Free Flashcards Study Helper
Free online courses
Google books for research
Grammar Check
Guide on punctuation
Homework Help
How to answer exam questions
How to Read a Textbook
How to Review in Less Time
How to study
How to survive finals
How to take notes Masterpost
How to Underline/Highlight Effectively
How to write an essay
Inkflow Visual Notebook
Khan Academy- Learn anything.
Learning how to study
Making a good study guide
Memorizing dates
Momentum- Be motivated and organised.
Note taking like a pro
Notetaking Strategies
Online calculator
Online Ruler
open2study- Free online study for everyone.
Presentation Zen- A blog that helps you with your presentations.
Productive Study Break Tips
Pull an All Nighter & Do Well On Your Exam
Quizlet- Make flashcards and test yourself.
Reading Review, Highlighting, and Underlining
Research & Reading Tips
Scholarpedia
School survival guide
Science simplified
Simple and Not So Simple Proven Ways to Sharpen Memory
Solving Problems vs. Practicing Them 
Studyblue 
StudyBlue- Make online flashcards.
Studying for an important exam
Study Playlist 
Superb Study Guides and Mini Moleskines
Taking Notes Effectively and Practically
Test-taking Strategies
Test your vocabulary
The Benefits of Active Notetaking
The “Secret” to Doing Well in School
Thinking & Memorizing Tips
Time management
Tips and trick to help you get good grades
Triaging Your Assignments
Useful websites
Website Blocker- Remove temptation.
What NOT To Do When Studying
Wikiversity
Wolfram Alpha for research 
Youtube Crash Course
“Academic Disaster Insurance”
“Big Idea” Flashcards

Textbooks
Free textbooks
Text Book Nova
Textbooks
Textbooks  
Ebookee
Reddit
BookFinder
Medical Textbooks
Cookbooks to Text Books
Science/Math Textbooks
Business Textbooks
Tech Books
Greek and Roman Text in English
Art Books
Historical Fiction
History Books
Project Gutenberg
Bookbyte
Free Ebooks
Books
Books
Books
Books
Classic Books
Classic Books
Classic Books
Classic Books
Classic books and Reference and study guides
Classic books
Free Textbook Download Masterpost
Textbook Guide

Organization
My Study Life - It’s a planner to help you remember when your homework is due and stuff like that
Free printable planner
To do list
How to make a study schedule
Class folder organization
“Study Cove” Organization
Making a Detailed Study Schedule
The Work-Progress Journal
Quick Tip for Flashcard Organization
Scheduling Organization
College Plan Spreadsheet Template
Organizing Your Notes
Getting Yourself Together in College with Mental Illness
How to Organize Your Workspace

Stress Reliefs/Relaxng
stress analyst - relaxonline
calm.com
distract yourself
self-care tips
self-care for overstimulated nerves
softest legs
feel better
Thoughts Room
Panic & Anxiety Masterpost
Guided Relaxation
Stress Relievers
Chill Playlist
Cute Videos
The quiet place project
Feelings Masterpost

Useful Stuff
plan, budget, and manage daily finances
How to take a Standardized Test
How to Master Excel
Fact check politicians
Back to school Masterpost
What you didn’t learn in high school

IDK what to put these under but they're helpful too
Check The Safety Of Any Website
Download From 8tracks
Print Webpages Without the Clutter
Is This Website Down For Me Or Everyone?
Self Defense Tips
Chrome Extension Tells You Which Tab Is Playing Music
Prevent Hangovers
Bookmark Online Videos
1 Month Free of Amazon Prime
Netflix Recommendations
Becoming An Adult Masterpost
All The Audios You’ve Ever Reblogged
Stream/Watch Free TV/Movies
Never Hit A Dead End With A Broken Link
Downloadable PDF To-Do Lists
Watch Musicals
List Of Universities On Tumblr
Summer Studying
Back to School

Scholarship Masterpost

8/17/2015: Updated some parts. Alphabetized the study section and added in new links. If at any point you want something added in that isn’t here just send me an ask or submit it in the submit box.

6/1/2016: Currently working on the issue of the links disappearing. Hopefully I’ll have it fixed 

OMGCP is canonically magic in subtle ways.  

Sure, there are the ghosts, and Johnson breaks the fourth wall.  No one questions those (except Ransom, who holds firm to ghosts not being real).

But there are other, small pieces of magic tucked in.  The quarter that stops perfectly in the crack in the floorboards.  The pies that always come out just the way Bitty wants them to no matter how much time he has in the Haus kitchen.  And unless something is wrong, unless the mood is disturbed, Bitty never drops one of them.  The way leaves always cling to Nursey, like he’s static charged, or like the wind and the earth are drawn to him.  The way the Haus’ roof always seems to hold exactly as much weight as it needs to, even when it shouldn’t be structurally sound enough to hold the weight of four or five hockey boys and their much smaller manager.  A little bit of love in the jam that makes Jack warm and happy and calm when he’s going through his pre-game ritual, a feeling he notices most when it was jam he got from Bitty.

There are things that none of them understand but that they accept, because everyday magic is more literal than figurative at Samwell.

Common mistakes English speakers make while speaking Spanish

Here are some of the common mistakes I hear from English native speakers who are learning Spanish.

  • Translating English expressions in Spanish literally. This is something quite common with all language learners, really. An example is “I’m hot” wich English speakers translate as “Estoy caliente”, which actually means “I’m horny”. (We say “Tengo calor” = I have heat). This happens because English speakers translate the sentence from their mother tongue (if you spoke a romance language this method could help, but with English it doesn’t)
  • Using the subject in every sentence. You might have heard about this. You could write an essay with perfect Spanish, but if the reader sees the subject in every sentence they will know that you aren’t a native speaker. This is because in English you always have to use the subject, but in Spanish it doesn’t sound natural.
  • Word order. While English has a word order that you can’t really change, in Spanish you can basically do whatever you want. Of course you can use the English sentence structure, but sometimes those structures sound weird in Spanish.
  • Mixig up the indicative and subjunctive. Ok, if you say the verb in indicative people won’t laugh at you, we know that you don’t have the subjunctive in English and it’s a pain in the ass to learn it, and it’s an advanced level. But if you want to reach proficiency, then you must learn those verbal tenses (sorry).
  • There is/there are. In Spanish we do not say “there is/there are”, “there was/there were”, “there has been/there have been”, etc. We ONLY use the singular form.
  • Possessive pronouns. The use of possessive pronouns in Spanish is a bit different. For example, we do not say “Me duele mi cabeza” (literally, My head hurts), but, rather, “Me duele la cabeza” (The head hurts). Same thing with other parts of your body.
  • IN/ON-EN/SOBRE. The equivalents would be “en” and “sobre”. However, we tend to use “en” for “sobre” too. For example, in English you say “It’s on the table”, which in Spanish is “Está sobre la mesa”, but “Está en la mesa” is more natural. Also, we say that somethig is “en Internet”, “en el periódico”, “en la televisión”… 

And there are more, of course, but these are the ones I find the most interesting, basically because I had the same problems but the other way round when I was learning English. Good luck with your studies!

4

“The impact of the Beatles — not only on rock & roll but on all of Western culture — is simply incalculable. And as personalities, they defined and incarnated ’60s style: smart, idealistic, playful, irreverent, eclectic. Although many of their sales and attendance records have since been surpassed, no group has so radically transformed the sound and significance of rock & roll. As musicians, the Beatles proved that rock & roll could embrace a limitless variety of harmonies, structures, and sounds; virtually every rock experiment has some precedent on Beatles records.” -  The Rolling Stone Encyclopedia of Rock & Roll (2001)

skam messages

“I became insecure and desperate. Your opinion meant more to me than my own and that’s not how it should be. I have to find out what my opinion is. And I have to do it on my own.“

“But I can’t continue having regrets for the rest of my life… I wish I could do it all over again, completely different. But I can’t. I’m just going to have to accept it and move on.”

“Everybody is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind. Always.”

“You are strong and independent when you can change your opinions. No matter what gender changes you.”

“War doesn’t start with violence. It starts with misunderstandings and prejudice.”

“If you say you’re in favour of a world of peace, you have to try to understand why others think and act the way they do.”

“People experience horrible things everyday and still manage to be nice to others. Being an asshole is not something you’re born with, or something you become. It’s a choice.”

“Hate doesn’t come from religion, it comes from fear.”

“Whether you believe in Allah or Jesus or the theory of evolution or parallel universes, there’s only one thing we know for certain. That life is… now.”

“Do you know how many people I know who say they believe in Allah? But they still drink, steal and vandalize. What’s more important? Saying you believe in Allah or live like you believe in Allah?”

I love that skam can place important and meaningful messages within the show not just through actions and events but also in the dialogue without sounding cliché or slipping from the narrative voice. These are legitimate things that teenagers think about and say. Yes, they’re mature but it comes from reflection, observation, and learning about how the world works and who we are. It’s never dumbed down to the point that it sounds cheesy or discredits teenagers’ ability to genuinely think, and it’s not so elevated and structured that it sounds fake or forced. It’s raw and real and beautiful

I think all of Harry’s fans, whatever they believe his love life to be like, owe him the decency to listen to his album when it comes out, without preconceptions about what he should be saying, is not allowed to say, or how he wants to express it.

He has made a very personal record, and in my opinion he’s being brave in the way he sends it out into the world. I hope we can all shut up for a minute and listen to it. You know, let the music speak for itself for at least one round, before we all come back here and fight about the lyrics. These guys spent months working on melodies, song structure, drum sounds, tunings, should we add more vocals here or a piano there… Don’t get me wrong, I expect some lyrics that will make me feel disillusioned, but I believe I owe him a few spins of that dramatic white vinyl that I ordered.

It’s a vulnerable thing, music. I feel what we shouldn’t do, is attack this album like a pack of wolves, pulling a piece of bloody meat out of the hands of the makers to rip it to shreds.

A very interesting Frozen factoid

So, in the Frozen tie-in book, A Sister More Like Me, it’s mentioned that Elsa loves geometry.

While at first this seems like a throwaway piece of trivia about Elsa, her interest in geometry makes a ton of sense when you think about how she was able to construct her ice palace. At first, I didn’t put much thought into Elsa being able to construct a beautiful (and structurally sound) ice castle like it was nothing, but when you consider that bit about her love of geometry, it provides an actual answer as to how she was able to do it.

Geometry is used a lot in architecture and construction, as knowing what shapes to use plays an important role in making sure a building is structurally sound. The very first thing Elsa does when making her castle is creating a center point to ensure the structure will be balanced. 

And when she actually begins to build the castle, we see a myriad of shapes being formed and used.

Finally, Elsa uses the term “fractals” in “Let it Go” (“My soul is spiraling in frozen fractals all around…”). A fractal is a geometric term that describes a set that displays a self-similar pattern and is often used to catalog snowflakes. The fact that Elsa knows and uses this word really speaks volumes about her knowledge of geometry.   

Tl;dr- Elsa used math to build a sweet-ass ice castle.

Humans Are Weird

I’m jumping on the Humans-Interact-With-Aliens bandwagon!
Okay, so, general behaviors varying wildly between humans and aliens??. And humans are just really perceptive at recognizing emotions (it comes with being social by nature) and good at consoling their crew-mates. 
(This totally sucks. This is me doing a draft. I’m going to have an actual short story that uses some of this up in a bit. Sorry for the odd/cruddy names, I have never written or really read sci-fy XD )

“Is everything alright, Wixi’nan?” a Human approaches Wixi’nan, arms splayed out wide and movements slow. Their voice is lower and softer than usual, which causes the thick brow on Wixi’nan’s gray skin to furrow and xir’s appendages to crack and elongate in frustration.
“I am fine.” xir’s tone is clipped, xe regards the dark eyes of the Human designated “Asper” with caution. “Why ix-ith- you’re language ix quite complicated-  it that you ask? I am performing my dutieth in a perfunctory and timely manner; if what you fear that my efficienxy has declined thince laxt we were met, then conthern yourself no longer.” Most Xota’ilianths would end the conversation there, as that would be their only concern until work was over. However, the Humans operated differently.
The Human nodded their head decisively, short hair bobbing with their movements. “Right, you’re sad. Follow me.”

Wixi’nan was loathe to admit, but Asper was right. It was just that Xe was supposed to be working, and complaints were rude and seen as a negative reflection on xir’s leader, so xi has stayed silent. Xe shadowed the Human’s soft steps with snaps and hisses that came from xe’s movements.
A door slid open with a chirping whir, and the Human pointed at a lump of stuffed cotton, “Sit.” Gentle sounds started emitting from the ship’s speakers, and xir’s antennae shot up and twitched wildly, face flushing to a dark color in preparation for fight. The sounds of waterfalls and what Humans called “piano” and “bass” soon soothed xir’s frayed nerves, however. It might be the “music” that the Humans talked of, but it sounded different. Xota’ilianths much preferred chanting and more structured sounds- patterns relaxed them. Xe sat, noting that the pile of stuffed cotton- called “pillows” by the Humans- was surprisingly comfortable. A mug of- *something*- was shoved into xir’s hands; xe briefly noted that the Human was so SMALL in comparison to xem.
“Do you want to talk about it?” the Human sipped at her own- *something*- as they inquired as to xir’s problems.

“No. Now, what ix thix odd drink?” It was good, xe admitted. As a semi-cold-blooded specie, warmth was to be appreciated.

Xe would not have been surprised if xir’s abrupt topic change offended Asper. It would, certainly, offend many of xir’s own kind.
Xe was startled when Asper simply went, “Okay. And hot-chocolate.” Before delving into stories: history and historical differences between their cultures (”Humanth have more than one culture?!”  “Oh, yes. We’re all quite spread out, you see, and so we developed according to different conditions and out cultures grew around our environments!”  “Fascinating.”), interesting things that had happened to them (What is a Gern?” “Believe be, A’pen, you do not wish to know.”). After conversation tired, Aspen offered Wixi’nan a book, and in silence they enjoyed the comfort of being close to another.

It was at the beginning of the next half-rotation of the nearest planet that the duo would awaken, in what Aspen referred to as a “pillow-fort”.

“Thank you, A’pen.” Xir’s large hand engulfed xir’s new “friend” ‘s. “Your name might mean ‘rough’ and ‘harsh’, but it clearly is no reflection of you

“Any time, Wixi’nan.” Aspen flashed a grin, before her facial emotions completed disappeared, startling Wixi’nan, “But you doubt the Human race and their ability to destroy and surprise; specifically. *my* ability to be totally wicked!” Another grin, and Aspen was off. The Human was off to investigate the “dangerous” beast, she scoffed. She had seen videos of it, it was TOTALLY an oversized puppy with a forked tongue, wings, claws, and what looked like armored fish-scales. Why did aliens not realize that a friend comes in many shapes?

The Outlier, part 1

K.E.V. Empress Deeq

Kllauw Mapping & Exploration Vessel

Varl 386.9827 System

Pearly anti-light glowed from all the curved edges of the control console in front of Clerk Ryn as the Empress Deeq slipped back into realspace. “All systems coming back online, purging all chaotic integers,” Ryn chirped pleasantly, moving through the task of spatial reintegration with the air of someone who could do it fast asleep and one-handed.

Librarian Qroo gave a mild crest flexion, indicating quiet pleasure at her crew’s efficiency. “As soon as you can, begin scans. We have much to learn about this system.”

Ryn replied a moment later, “Mathematical stability is achieved. 2+2=4, ma’am.”

“Initiating scans now,” piped up Auditor Yrpp, its crest at full height.

Qroo chuckled a little. She hadn’t been that excited about a system scan for some time. The greatest minds all agreed, on Kllauw and amongst its allies, that there were no more sapient races waiting to be found. The 7 great species and their vassals had searched all of the most likely stars. All that remained were the borderline systems, theoretically capable of supporting life but practically so hostile that life rarely progressed beyond single-celled organisms.

The Varl 386.9827 System was one such outlier. It’s star was a little too young, and a little too energetic. Odds were any life that tried to start here would get blasted away by a coronal mass ejection before it could amount to anything. But, she had a job to do.

Clerk Ryn and Auditor Yrpp huddled together over the monitor, their crests almost touching. ‘Not that they would know what to do with them if they did,’ mused Qroo. ‘Ah, to be young, genderless and carefree.’

“Preliminary scans coming in, Librarian,” Ryn said. “Four gas planets, some look like they might have moons, there’s a lot of small ice formations at the system halo. Might have been another gas planet out there at some time.” Its voice became very small. “Oh, no. There’s an asteroid belt right in the system’s habitable zone.”

“Stay the course, crew,” said Qroo. “We have to be certain.”

“Yes, Librarian,” it replied. “ Detecting two or three small planets beyond the asteroid belt. Hard to make out any specifics till we get closer.”

“Take us in, Clerk,” said the Librarian, settling back in her chair. “Let’s see what the inner system holds.”

***

Qroo was in her stateroom, eating her second shift ration when the call came in. “Librarian to the bridge. Impossible signal detected.”

Qroo’s crest dipped in annoyance. ‘Overexcited cadets with their flaps still wet. Now what?’

She pulled her uniform jacket back on and slowly made her way to the bridge.

***

Before she even reached the bridge, she could hear it. A strange, rhythmic sound full of distortion and noise, but underlying it, a clear pattern, a musical beat.

The doors to the bridge slid open and she could suddenly hear much clearer. The beat moved swiftly, and it was accompanied by a variety of noises higher and lower in pitch. It had strange tonal structure and she couldn’t begin to understand the lyrics, but one thing was certain.

This was music!

Coming to her wits before her crew could see her standing in the doorway, crest flaccid with shock, Qroo strode in and took her seat. “Auditor, where is that coming from?” she barked out.

“It’s a planet well past the inner edge of the habitable zone, looks like the second world in this system, unless there’s another one closer to the star we haven’t seen yet. Calculations are uncertain on that as yet,” Auditor Yrpp spoke quickly but precisely, subsuming his excitement in his professionalism.

“Somebody thinks it is habitable, Auditor. Get me more information.”

“Yes, Ma’am.”

No one had stopped the music playing from the bridge speakers, and truth be told, no one wanted to. It was wholly alien, exotic yet tauntingly familiar. The chord structure and melodic arrangement spoke to their computational instincts, daring them to find the patterns and decipher the structure of the alien sounds.

“The planet appears to have a molten core. I’m detecting thermal venting from the core in several spots around the globe,” said Yrpp.

Ryn piped up, “They have a moon with over 1% of the planet’s mass. This planet must experience enormous tidal forces.”

Yrpp came back with the next insane fact, “The proximity to the star is causing severe atmospheric disturbances. I am observing twelve storms of category 14 or higher. Two of them are category 18.”

Librarian Qroo leaned back in her chair, frantically processing all this information. Kllauw’s volcanoes were a billion years dead, and its moons together were only .004% of its mass! The worst storm recorded in the planet’s history was a category 7!

“How is anything still alive down there?”

Qroo and her crew kept working, cataloging the impossibility of this little world they would come to call Earth. All the while, the Andrews Sisters sang, and Glenn Miller played.

***

W2H2 Update! (Scripts are hard..)

Just a random update to give you guys an idea of what I’m up to and where I’m at!

So… writing a script??? Is like, the hardest thing in the world.  Rather, writing a GOOD script is hard.  Even for bigger Hollywood productions!  I won’t say which 60 million dollar animated movie I watched the other day that me and all my friends agree had a garbage script, ‘cause that’s not what this is about, but what I’m trying to illustrate is that it’s difficult and is often over-looked.  Some things don’t require a strong script and that’s fine, but Welcome to Hell does.

Anyway, I’m also not by any means professing that I’m some master writer who understands the nuance of a good script… quite the opposite, haha.  That’s where I’m at right now, and that’s what I’m trying to get better at.  So I bounce it off of my other animator friends for feedback, pinpoint any parts are tripping them up… have them read the dialogue, see what feels too clunky.  Getting different perspectives and figuring out solutions to the bits that are bugging me… it’s this whole process of picking it apart and putting it back together, just trying to build it up and make it as structurally sound as possible.  You want everything to click into place! 

It’s a learning process, and it’s a long process, and if I remember correctly, it was something I was still actively changing up until the last possible second when I made the first W2H.  It’s really interesting trying to pull something like this off and make it come together… I think about the way I wrote W2H back in college, and the way I’m writing it now, and it’s just such a strange process that evolves in these waves, and at some point you’re hit with a memory of, like, the First Draft, and you’re almost startled by how little sense it made and how far it’s come since then.  Sometimes I think it might be interesting to… I don’t know… put together a youtube video explaining the bizarre, but satisfying process of trying to carve a proper story out of some nebulous idea.  It’s definitely a kind of journey. 

I took a break a couple days ago to just… start animating a scene without dialogue, haha.  Because honestly, like, even the task of animation–this thing we all play up as some gargantuan feat–seemed simple compared to writing.  And it’s just a matter of, well, that I have PRACTICE doing animation.  Writing scripts (GOOD scripts) is definitely a skill I want to hone better! 

I mean other than that, I’m hoping to get some dialogue recordings done pretty soon (are any of you guys voice actors, btw? I might need someone, but I guess that’s a whole ‘nother post).  But that’s basically it!  Just kind of a vague update about the writing process.  I’m not complaining by any means, just kinda … keepin’ you guys posted.  I really want W2H2 to be good, so I’m tryin’ my best to GET GOOD and make make it good!

(Marginally related, some storyboard/script tips I wrote up a couple months ago while storyboarding.  They’re just notes to myself, but I thought they’d be helpful!  I’ll try to post more stuff like that if you guys find it interesting!)

My personal head cannon is that Carmilla kept her childhood home and would occasionally hide away there when ever she wants to be left alone.  All the locals obviously think it’s haunted and won’t go anywhere near it.  Anyways, after saving the world, she takes Laura there.  Laura wakes up early and takes that opportunity to explore the place (even though Carmilla told her not to wander off by herself because the place is old and some parts aren’t entirely structurally sound).

If I had and capacity for writing I’d give you an accompanying fic, but I don’t so instead you get an illustration. 

P.S. My full portrait of Mircalla can be found here