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Happy Halloween! Welcome to the seventh annual edition of virtual trick-or-treating.


Knock or ring the bell by leaving me a comment, and I'll reply with a treat of some sort. It might be a fic snippet, a picture, a song, or something else I come up with in the moment. My intention is to post all treats before I go to bed on Halloween. Lurkers and anonymous trick-or-treaters are welcome! (But if you're posting anonymously or with an LJ account that is completely friends-locked and you want a treat specific to your interests, let me know something about why you know me.)

(Not my actual door. Photo by Flickr user Heather Cowper, used under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.0 Generic license.)
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I've been replied to by an author, a dancer in a reality show, and a costume designer on Twitter before, but today it was John Rogers acknowledging that his show's pairings really are Nate/Sophie and Eliot/Parker/Hardison:

(Assuming I don't manage to break the fourth wall again, your regularly scheduled ficcish treats will resume tomorrow.)

(Also, why are my screencaps a mess? If you view the image, it looks fine, but when I previewed the post or when I try to post to Tumblr, they're a disaster.)
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I'm feeling very between fandoms and non-fannish* at the moment, which means I will probably go back to my between fandoms mode of occasional random fic posting and no discussion. (Watch: in two weeks I'll be in love with something new and won't be able to stop talking about it.)

In other fannish news, I have imported all my fic into AO3. Total number of stories: 409. Even taking into account the fact that that includes some permanently unfinished things, that's a lot of fic. I tried to count how many fandoms it was yesterday, but I got tired of counting at thirty. It's probably somewhere over fifty, even doing things like collapsing individual bands into bandom. I knew I had written a lot of fic in a lot of fandoms over the last thirteen and a half years, but that was possibly even more than I expected.

One more piece of unrelated fannishness: I have Netflix again for a while. (Thanks [ profile] allegram and [ profile] dedalvs!) My plan was to watch some TOS so I could get all the references in Star Trek reboot fic. Instead, I'm watching/rewatching (I haven't yet hit the point where I stopped watching the first time around) Grey's Anatomy. It's so soapy and sometimes I feel like I'm stuck in it, but I can't stop watching. I loved this show when it started - A soapy medical drama with lots of female characters? Totally my kind of thing! - and then at Escapade one year someone ruined it for me by saying hateful things about Meredith. (I gather she's generally not well-liked. I always liked her.) Alex/Izzie is my Grey's Anatomy OTP forever. I would take fic recs!

Other things I've been watching: Nikita (my favorite show on TV right now), Once Upon a Time (I wasn't into this week's ep; we'll see if that's the show or my mood), Hawaii Five-0 (I'm an ep behind, and I keep holding out hope that it'll get better, but we'll see how it goes), Revenge (love this show, and they hit the reveal I've been waiting for this week), Leverage (sometimes I love this show, sometimes it's just okay), Ringer (I still love this show for its interesting plot).

* My heart and mind are completely occupied by Sherlock but (a) I don't feel qualified to write fic for it (pay no attention to the Google doc behind the curtain), (b) I don't want to talk about it as much as just hold it in my heart, and (c) I don't really want to read discussion about it because I know that if I do, someone will ruin it for me. [back]
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My original plot bunny was this: H50/Leverage. Steve and Eliot know each other. Danny has heard of Parker. Chin is not snowed by Sophie. Kono and Hardison geek out together, but she doesn't get too close because she gets there's something between him and Parker. And poor Nate is like, "Hey, this is my team."

I would still very much like someone to write that version, complete with case and humor, but instead of being the person to write it, I wrote nine hundred words of competency porn.

Spoiler Warning: Spoilers for the H50 season one finale, including probably incorrect/disagreed upon by others projections about the future stemming from it. No Leverage spoilers.

Not A Real Thing )
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Since we're about halfway through, I thought this would be a good time for my one fictional person fic. If you want to know what I was going to do with this story, I talked about it here. This is just the very beginning.

Sophie and Nate blinked at the three children standing where, only a moment ago, the rest of their team had stood. )
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When You Need To Do Something Right
If you ever feel like you need to have someone tell you you've done something right, I can't suggest a more effective way than writing something for an anonymous fic meme. I wrote four last week (some at [ profile] anon_lovefest, some at [ profile] jbkinkmeme), and it was awesome. First of all, writing anonymously meant I didn't feel the same pressure to write something good. Secondly, I didn't think the first two I did were particularly good, and yet people really liked them, and feedback for anonymous fic turns out to be more of a thrill than feedback for other fic. Thirdly, one of the things I wrote was perhaps the most fun thing to write ever (and I fell in love with it and might claim and post it here too).

Academic Overtraining, or, In Which I Want Sources Cited
The Bandom overview at [ profile] crack_van says, "Bandom was built on the backs of a million picspams and primers," which seems to be true, and I've read quite a few now. But a primer is not, itself, a source, and I find myself annoyed when they don't cite their sources. I greatly appreciate [ profile] riorhapsody's The Academy Is... Ridiculous Primer for citing sources. I may have spent too much time writing papers in my college days. (To be honest with you, I'm so committed to proper source citations that I was really tempted to footnote "Not Ever" with the sources for each actual event in the story.)

Serious Gabe Saporta Is Serious (And Hot)
One of the best things about Cobra Starship's album coming out next week is that they're doing a lot of interviews. There are two I've liked recently because they have Gabe being serious about music, which is awesome. First is this one from MTV, which is better if you watch the video than if you read it because the content is not as interesting as Gabe and Alex's attitudes. I love how excited Gabe gets about the interviewer picking up on the influences in their music. (He misses one, though - when they're talking about the oohs on "Fold Your Hands Child," Gabe says that's all Ryland, which, duh! It's totally This Is Ivy League.) Secondly, Gabe and Ryland did an oddly serious interview with MySpace Music. I mean, really, who's serious when talking to MySpace Music? One of the interesting moments is that he's not just serious about music - he talks about "selling out" and says, "The whole concept of selling out is completely nonsensical and asinine in a capitalist system. That's a bigger question." Smart is so sexy.

Christian Kane, I Still Love You Best
John Rogers is doing weekly Leverage Q&As, and in the one about last week's ep, he told us:
Eliot as a teddy bear? No. But Chris is both great with kids, and works well with kid actors (kudos to our guest star for this week, he was really fantastic). And kids basically treat Chris like Batman.
My life needs eighty thousand adorable Chris-with-kids fics now. (I was just reading through unfinished/unposted fic on my hard drive this week, and I have two. But someone else should write some.)

On Writing About Music and Musicians
I always feel inadequate when I try to write about music - which is problematic since my fandoms of the moment are all musician-based. I don't really know much about music, although I have gotten much better at finding/counting the beat in a piece of music. I end up not writing much about music itself or the making of it. I keep thinking that if I'm writing about people who define their lives by music, then I should write about music, too, at least in relation to their lives, but I don't know what I'm doing.

On Writing Self-Indulgently
It seems like everything I write these days is horribly self-indulgent. But then I keep catching myself and thinking, hey, isn't all fan fic essentially self indulgent? Isn't the great thing about fan fic that we don't have to deal with the setup and blahblahblah and get to skip straight to the fun parts? And so what if my current fun parts are all overblown romanticism and cuddling?

Panic! Split: The Story I Most Want
I want someone to write the Panic! origin story where it's all about how much Spencer loves music (and maybe also Brendon). I keep thinking that the fanon mythology (as gathered from reading fic) is all about how Spencer loves Ryan, and that the band was about getting Ryan, and then Brendon, what they want/need, but it's never about Spencer wanting the band and music for their own sake.

Panic! Split: Rec
What would a roundup of fannish things sort of post be without a rec? The rec is [ profile] overnighter's "Mise en Place," which is a Brendon/Spencer story. I should forewarn you that the first thing I left in my feedback comment was, "OUCH. (In a good way.)" It's well written, it has a hopeful ending, and she does an amazing job of giving Brendon emotional connections to food.

Feedback: Leaving and Reading
I've been trying to be better about leaving feedback in recent times. This is largely because I found myself sending recs or talking about fic and throwing out one-sentence reasons things were good, and then thinking, "I could tell the author that, too." Obviously authors like feedback, but I also wonder if other readers ever read feedback other people leave on a story. I do sometimes page down through the comments to see if anything jumps out at me, either in the comments or in who left them.
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I've decided that today should be a five things Friday. So prompt or ask me whatever you want. This can be a fic prompt (five pick-up lines that didn't work on Jensen) or a getting to know you question (five movies I love) or anything else you can think to ask (five alternate uses for pipe cleaners). If you want to ask/prompt more than one five things, uh, thing, I'm cool with that. Anyone who gets their prompt/question in before 7 pm Pacific Time will get an answer before I go to bed (unless it gets so long it needs to be its own thing, but if that happens, I'll tell you about it).
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This is the part where I talk about this entry.

To preface this entry: I don't know if this is everything I want to say, or even how I want to say it. This doesn't flow as smoothly as I wish I could make it go. This feels, to me, more like thinking via my fingers than the actual essay someone else might make out of the same ideas.

I also think I should note that I spent much of the morning being teary-eyed about Sarah Connor Chronicles. Just so you know where I'm coming from.

You should also know there are spoilers in this entry. I've put them behind a cut, but if you've come here via a link that takes you directly to this entry's page, you might not notice the warnings.

This is the part where I talk about women.

I've been saying that all my reading about race, racism, and anti-racism has resensitized me to issues of sexism, but that's not really true. My resensitization started before that, with Leverage's "The Stork Job." This part of this entry has Leverage spoilers. )

This part of this entry has Dollhouse spoilers. )

[ profile] norwich36 pointed me to a pair of [ profile] coffeeandink's posts about Sarah Connor Chronicles. This part of this entry has Sarah Connor Chronicles spoilers. )

I think it's worth noting that SCC and Dollhouse are both the brainchildren of men: Dollhouse is Joss Whedon's and SCC is Josh Friedman's. I skimmed the list of writers on IMDb's full cast and crew pages for each of them, and Dollhouse has more women writers than SCC, both by numbers and proportion. Extra interesting to me is that the two pieces of SCC fan fic that I've read that were absolutely incredible (I have to admit to not having read much, just most of the things at Yuletide and a handful of other miscellaneous things, and most of it tends to blend together) were both written by a man: "Cinderella, Made of Steel" and "Seven Sunday Mother-Daughter Mornings," both by David Hines. You can't end oppression without involving the oppressors. The Egyptians are God's people too. (Happy Passover.)

For me, in some very real ways, the season finale of SCC marks the end of this TV season. With that done for the season (or possibly forever), there isn't anything I'm going to look forward to in quite the same way. But I've also been busying myself with watching the first episodes of a bunch of midseason shows.

This is the part where I talk about lgbt people.

One of the shows I watched the first two episodes of was Cupid. I have vague memories of seeing the ads for the Jeremy Piven version, but I don't think I ever watched it. I thought I'd watch this version because I really like both Bobby Cannavale and Sarah Paulson. Then the first episode had both Sean Maguire (I had no idea he was actually British) and Marguerite Moreau, both of whom are pretty and I like. This part of this entry has Cupid spoilers. )

I've been thinking about characters who are retconned into being straight, both because it's one of the things that happens to the lgbt superheroes on Perry Moore's list and because [ profile] minkhollow brought it up in [ profile] brown_betty's book discussion. This part of this entry has Supernatural spoilers. )

This part of this entry has Kings spoilers. )

This part of this entry has Sarah Connor Chronicles spoilers. )

One of the midseason shows I watched the first ep of this week is The Unusuals. If I could choose only one midseason ensemble cop show about a rich kid who became a cop, it would be this one (over Southland, but I'll watch another ep or two of that because Ben McKenzie did sell it at the end and Regina King is hot), although that's not much of a rec. It's not as funny as the ads made it look, and Amber Tamblyn is the kind of cute-pretty that they should be doing something with (in terms of the character) rather than ignoring. This part of this entry has The Unusuals spoilers. )
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Uh, yeah. I've clearly been influenced by [ profile] moirariordan's "Four and One," which I read earlier this week. (And on the subject of Leverage fic recs: "Five Times Eliot did What Had to be Done" by [ profile] teand is awesome.)


Freak )
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(I am going to attempt to embed video here. I've never done this. I have no idea if it'll work or not. If not, check back later, because I'll keep trying to fix it. Also, if things start playing automatically and you find it annoying, you should install flashblock.)

Anyway, a few days ago, [ profile] keepaofthecheez posted a hilarious video that needs to be shared, but I didn't know who I should share it with, which is why you all get to be shared with.

How To Give A Great Man To Man Hug

General Etiquette:How To Give A Great Man To Man Hug

Then, I saw a link to a Leverage behind the scenes sort of thing which asks cast members "Who is most like their character?" If you've been paying attention to me recently, you probably know where this is going. Whether you do or not, it's still entertaining enough to watch.

Leverage - Behind The Scenes: Most Like Character

(Also entertaining is the one where Aldis says he and Chris just wanted chairs with their names on them and they finally got them. This may explain why Chris looks so uncomfortable in the picture where Beth's in his chair. He just wants his own chair! Be forewarned that some of their behind the scenes vids are spoilery for eps that haven't yet aired.)

Even as I was entertained by these two videos and thought about posting them here, I thought, "But how do I connect them together?" And then I was watching/listening to videos of Kane live, and I came across a video of Christian Kane doing "Let Me Go" (which I love) live. The person taping was far enough away from the stage that there are people wandering in and out of the frame between the camera and Chris. Two of those people are a couple of men who have a man to man hug that is both quite long and also repeated. I'm not sure what the etiquette teacher voice from the first video would say about that.

Let Me Go (Live)

Now I'm watching Four Sheets to the Wind. Oh, Chris, why do you end up in these not that good, place-specific indie movies where you have sex scenes that last less than ten seconds? And more importantly, why haven't I learned that watching movies just because you're in them is not really a good idea?

I also just read through a transcript of an older Q&A (linked from [ profile] dea_liberty's Steve/Chris Tin-Hat PARTY post) wherein Chris says, in response to a question about other skills and talents, "I normally cook on this whole thing, but Steve's an unbelieveable cook, so I can't take that from him, cuz when I learned, I learned from him. So I love to cook, I cook everyday, that's my favorite thing to do. But he [Steve] went to culinary school so...fuck him! You won. He's a really really good cook, so that's your thing Steve..." *swoon*

(I kind of want to ask if anyone's tried to make a Chris and Steve timeline for easy reference, but apparently there's been wank in the past over the whole Kane the band becoming Christian Kane the solo artist thing, and I don't know either of the communities I started watching well enough to know if asking is a good idea or not.)
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Missing from my exclamation points from last night (because I didn't notice it) is the fact that The Wedding Job was directed by Jonathan Frakes. Jonathan Frakes! I only noticed this because this morning I followed the link from Chris's MySpace blog and bulletin (I find it hilarious that whoever's in charge of his MySpace always posts things as both a blog post and a bulletin) to iFMagazine's interview with Anthony De Longis, who played the Butcher of Kiev in The Wedding Job. He talks a lot about the fight scene and says tons of nice things about Chris.
There are places where I'm sure they'll intercut, because they had two cameras and two angles, but what was fun was, we would shoot it start to finish, all five phrases. And that's a big rarity. Not that many people can do it. Christian can. I can. When you see how good [the Butcher is] and how good [Elliott] is and the two of us struggling to get an advantage with each other, it just adds to Christian's credibility as that character.
(Apparently iFMagazine doesn't know how to use IMDb to check the spelling of character names. Come on! This is basic writing 101. I keep forgetting how Eliot is spelled too, and I never have been able to figure out if it was Sara or Sarah on CSI, but I look it up every time I need to use it!)

After reading that, I remembered that John Rogers talks about Leverage eps on his blog, so I went to see what he had to say.

First, he says, "EDIT: Almost forgot. That's Chris Kane doing not just the fight knifework but the kitchen knifework. He's actually a pretty great cook." All those stories about Chris cooking now have a reality basis! And you know he learned from Steve. There really needs to be fic where Steve teaches Chris how to cook and they fall in love along the way. *sigh* If only Chris/Steve were a bigger fandom or if more of what there is were worth reading. (There's a surprisingly large number of Chris/Steve stories that are genuinely unreadable.) (I actually read five parts of a who knows how long and hideously overdramatic WiP yesterday because I was so desperate for Chris/Steve. I can only reread [ profile] tigers_prowl's fic and [ profile] smokeringhalos' "Build Me Up, Buttercup (the Kane Remix)" so many times before I know them by heart.) Any recs for Chris/Steve will be greeted with effusive thanks, especially if you come up with something that isn't (a) something I've read before or (b) one of the aforementioned unreadable fics.

Then, one of the questions about The Stork Job was about how real Chris's injury looked. John says:
SOMEBODY went out at 1am after his weekly poker game with Tim Hutton and SOMEBODY started tossing around a football, until SOMEBODY slipped on the asphalt in his goddam cowboy boots.

Miraculously -- and I mean MIRACULOUSLY -- that Somebody heals at weirdly supernatural speed. We only had to cover the problem in two shots (the lesbian bar joke was an on-set throwaway, I think). Seriously, the entire asphalt burn was healed in under three days. The doctors were freaked. It definitely supports the idea that "shitkicker" actually has a genetic component.
Oh, Chris. This is exactly the kind of thing fangirls expect you to do! Maybe we're not so wrong in our Chris fanon. Also, as long as I'm making fic recs to go along with my gushing over Chris, let me rec [ profile] wenchpixie's "How Come a Threesome Isn't Ever as Good as in Porn?" which is a gen SPN/Leverage crossover in which Eliot is not the only one who didn't know it was a lesbian bar.

Last week's post had pictures from the set, including this one, in which Chris looks horribly uncomfortable, the way he does in most pictures where he's trying to smile. Only the second time I looked at it did I realize Beth's sitting in his chair. [ profile] schuyler said "It looks like she's sitting in his chair and telling a super embarrassing story about Chris' childhood." This would make an awesome story by someone who's funnier than I am. (What are the chances I could somehow foist it off on [ profile] with_a_kay? If only I knew her better.)
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Exclamation Points! )

Also worth an exclamation point, although not specifically related to this episode: pictures! This one of Chris is the first non-PostSecret photo I've saved to my hard drive in years. (I also love this one of Beth, even if I suspect her face has been Photoshopped smooth.)

Two Complaints: One About Plot, One About TNT )
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I've been watching Leverage via Yidio (TNT's finally putting them up online, but they're seriously delayed). The most annoying thing is that Yidio and TNT are not in sync - Yidio has the wrong episode titles every time TNT airs them out of their original intended order. Actually, the out of orderness is annoying for other reasons too. Lightly Spoilerish )

The show is lots of fun, despite the occasional hugely obvious product placement and the shoehorning in of one of Chris's songs for cross-promotional purposes. Mediumly Spoilerish ) If you liked the Ocean's movies, you'll probably like Leverage, and if, like me, you saw the original trailer back in the spring or summer or whenever and thought, "Oh, Chris, why are you always on terrible shows?" you should know that the second trailer actually made it look as good as it is, which is way, way better than how the first trailer made it look.

When I first started watching, I really wanted Eliot/Hardison/Parker, and I knew even before the show first aired that Eliot/Hardison was going to be the pairing of choice (both thanks to the posts on [ profile] c_kanedaily and because it's Christian Kane and Aldis Hodge). ([ profile] with_a_kay wrote an entertaining, non-spoilery snippet.) The more I watch, though, the more I want to bake Parker cookies and cuddle her and be the mommy she never had. Ahem.

Anyway, I'm kind of afraid to go looking for Leverage fic, but if you know of anything good, especially anything Parker-centered or Eliot/Hardison/Parker, tell me about it!


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Ruth Sadelle Alderson


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