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Monday Works Roundup, 9/26/16 September 26, 2016

Posted by Erin Ptah in Works Roundup.
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But I’m A Cat Person
Bonus Being Impressions (art | Poe, Walker, Cub, Jany, Blake | worksafe)
Bi Visibility 2016 (comic | Cohen/Jessica, Cohen/Bennett | G)

Leif & Thorn
Fancy Katya (art | Katya | worksafe)
Embassy Gem Flirting (art | Sven, Del, Iona, Ragnild | worksafe)
De-aging potion (sketches | Leif, Thorn | worksafe)

Hello From The Magic Tavern
The Wizards of Foon (art | Jyn’Leeviyah, Usidore, Spintax, Can, Jamillious, Aerobud, Telphys, Dark Lord, Blorth | worksafe)

Oz books
Ozma has a Type (art | Betsy/Ozma/Dorothy | worksafe)

Steven Universe
Homeworld Pearls (art | Pearl, misc Pearls | worksafe)
Bunny Garnets (art | Sapphire, Ruby, Garnet, Sardonyx | worksafe)
The Pearlrose Waltz (art | Pearl/Rose | worksafe)

Voltron: Legendary Defender
My metal arm brings all the geeks to the yard (sketch | Shiro/Pidge | worksafe)
Making out in a robot lion (sketch | Shiro/Keith | worksafe)
The Conspiracy Swing (sketch | Keith/Pidge | worksafe)

Virgil (reward chibi, worksafe)

This Week in But I’m A Cat Person:
Sparrow gets an unexpected visitor. Bennett is offensive, and for once he isn’t trying to be.

This Week in Leif & Thorn:
Leif finally realizes that he isn’t as unbiased and impartial towards Thorn as he’s supposed to be.

“On The Subject of Noncon Fanworks” September 25, 2016

Posted by Erin Ptah in Meta.
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An excellent essay about darkfic and sexuality (cw: author discusses her own trauma/abuse history). Centered on Sherlock fandom, though the general ideas apply no matter what characters you’re writing about.

I wanted to highlight this part:

If, instead of normalizing the existence of fics that portray noncon and underage, we make these themes taboo, if we pathologize them, if we require noncon works to be kept in a separate archive, if we insist that it be labeled with derogatory terms like “rapefic,” then what will happen is that writers who think that their work has “a bit of dubcon” in it will not tag it as such, in the hopes that it will fly under the radar and they won’t be banished to the leper colony with the filthy rapefic fans. This will have results that neither the responsible creators and consumers of noncon, nor the people who dislike it and categorically oppose it, want: that someone who doesn’t want to see noncon will see it.

I wrote the above paragraph close to a year ago, and my predictions are already coming true. I have seen noncon and underage fanworks being posted without appropriate tags and warnings. Some of these inadequately tagged fics are being posted by the same people who accused me and my fellow gender politics panelists of being rape apologists and pedophiles. The creators of these works defend them as being somehow different than the works the so-called rape apologists create, because they themselves were underage when they drew the fanart or wrote the fic, or because the work features the right” pairing, or the “right” kind of non-consensual situation, or because they don’t “eroticize” the noncon aspect, or because there’s a sufficient amount of comfort to offset the hurt, or for any number of other reasons.

It’s framed as a prediction, and maybe with respect to Sherlock fandom it is, but for fandom in general it’s nothing new. I remember wrestling with the same kind of cognitive dissonance more than a decade ago:

“Okay, I like stories where characters get hurt, but that’s a Bad Thing to enjoy. But I also like the emotional payoff when characters are rescued at the end! So when describing this, I should emphasize the rescue part. Imply that any scenes with pain and suffering are just a necessary evil on the way to the morally-acceptable payoff. Or, hey, maybe don’t mention the suffering at all.”

That mindset not only discourages people from warning for dark story elements, it stifles the general discussion about them, so that even if you want to warn, you can’t pick up the vocabulary to do it well.

I remember one fic of mine — it had a brief sex scene, and it was consensual, just incredibly unhealthy. Potentially very upsetting! And the only warning I put on it was a general sexual-content label. Partly because I was erring on the side of what looked more Morally Pure, but also because it was neither “non-con” nor “sex that is positive and affirming and healthy in every way” — and I didn’t have a handle on how to articulate the situations in between.

Fandom in general should be a place that helps people figure this stuff out, not a place where people get shamed and shouted down for trying.

“Situation: There are 14 competing blog platforms….” September 22, 2016

Posted by Erin Ptah in Fandom.
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It’s been a long time since I was really satisfied with a social blogging site.

WordPress blogs are powerhouses of crossposting and have great features like tagging and scheduling, but still manage to feel like little disconnected islands. Dreamwidth is better at community, and I love having icons, but lots of its capabilities are limited, and some of the ones we were promised at launch (including queueing!) still haven’t showed up. Tumblr queues are wonderful things, the image hosting is unmatched, and it’s incredibly easy to find content for a given fandom or interest, but it leaves out basic things like comment threading. Also, the total undifferentiation means the only way to avoid spammers/haters/wankers is by playing constant Whack-A-Mole.

Deviantart has amazing features for art hosting/queueing/sharing, but the interest in general blogging is low, and only logged-in users can comment. Facebook is only good for really short content; Twitter, even shorter. I could use no-patron-threshold posts on Patreon to share things, but that’s an audience I really don’t want to annoy with “not the content I came here for” type posts, because when they leave, their money goes with them.

For years now I’ve been mostly double-posting on Dreamwidth and WordPress. It would be nice to consolidate, but neither one seems likely to develop the features that I rely on the other to have.

(And some posts get slapped down onto other sites when it seems appropriate. Like playing a demented game of Blog Twister.)


People on FFA have been talking about Imzy for months now. Saying it grabs some of the best parts of Dreamwidth and some of the best parts of Tumblr, and strikes a nice balance.

I finally caved and checked it out.

Good points: post scheduling! Image hosting! Neat features like being able to mark posts for having spoilers, and tip users for individual posts (without making a Patreon-style commitment). Posts can be commented on, liked, and/or shared as links.

Content is grouped into communities, DW-style, but the site has more emphasis on connecting you with them, making it feel like a less-anarchist Tumblr. I’ve already gotten into more interesting fandom conversations there in the past week than on DW (minus FFA) and WordPress combined in months.

Bad points: crossposting for other sites is nonexistent, Imzy’s version of personal blogs are just communities awkwardly crammed into a mold they weren’t designed for, and the whole thing is currently only visible to logged-in users. You can’t use the site as a platform to display things to the world in general.

So it’s not going to displace any of my other fandom home bases any time soon. But it’s a nice place to socialize, and there’s a chance it might develop the features that would let it supplant either my WordPress or DW blog.

For now Imzy is in invite-only beta. Anyone who wants to try it, grab a code:

And you can find me at @erinptah.

(Apologies to xkcd.)

Is racism over yet? How about now? September 22, 2016

Posted by Erin Ptah in News Roundup.
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My computer has a working keyboard again! Which is good, because now that I can type “a href” instead of ” hre”, I can get back to sharing…links like these.

“The 15-year-old girl was struck by a car on Sunday while riding her bike, after which she hit her head and passed out for half a minute. […] Police officers grabbed her off her bike as she tried to ride away and slammed her face into a nearby windowsill, eventually cuffing her hands.” Then they lock her in the car and pepper-spray her. A mixed-race teenage accident victim.

“Dash cam video released by the Tulsa Police Department on Monday showed 40-year-old Terence Crutcher with his hands above his head moments before he was shot and killed by one of the officers at the scene.”

“Grand Rapids Officer Sean McCamman grabbed the 15-year-old and slammed him to the ground. Then he beat him over and over with a flashlight until he was eventually physically and mentally disabled.” Austin Braswell, a different teenager brutalized by cops. Warning for graphic photos.

“A young man was arrested by Portsmouth, Virginia police over a mere $5 in groceries that he stole because he was hungry. […] But now, Jamycheal Mitchell, 24, has been found dead in his jail cell, after spending four months behind bars with no conviction and no bail.”

“Scott’s brother told reporters that Scott was waiting for his son to get home from school when an officer jumped out of his vehicle without a uniform.”

“Video released by police in Oklahoma shows an officer pepper-spraying an 84-year-old woman after authorities entered her home to search for her son.”

“Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson has recommended firing seven officers accused of covering up the police shooting of Laquan McDonald in October 2014.

“Police still don’t know what the nine-year Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department veteran said, if anything, to an armed east-side homeowner before shooting him once in the stomach early Tuesday.” Responsible, legal gun owner gets shot because the cops assume he’s burglarizing his own house! Where’s the NRA when this happens?

Look, can we all agree that if you’re such an unarguable neo-Nazi that you’ve gone and gotten tattoos about it, you’re not fit to be a police officer? Is that bar set low enough that we can get over it?

Anybody want to beta an original short story? September 19, 2016

Posted by Erin Ptah in Leif & Thorn.

Fantasy hurt/comfort, about 15K words total. Split up over three parts. You’d get them one at a time.

It’s a Leif & Thorn AU that’s supposed to work as a standalone piece, so I’d like someone who hasn’t read the comic to read and comment on how well that holds up. General feedback on SPAG, pacing,  and emotional reactions would be cool too.

Drop a comment if you’re interested!

Cool politics, past and present September 17, 2016

Posted by Erin Ptah in News Roundup.
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Harriet Tubman: Civil War military operation director.

Deadshot Mary, real-life hotshot 1930s undercover detective.

I can’t believe that, when I studied the House Committee on Un-American Activities in school, nobody ever mentioned to us that it was established by an actual paid KGB spy.

June 2016: “The sex of Jamie Shupe is hereby changed from female to non-binary. Notice of this legal change shall be posted in a public place in Multnomah County as required by law.”

“A leading news reporter for Ireland’s national broadcaster, RTÉ, has been ‘overwhelmed’ by the support he has received from his employers and the public since he revealed that he identifies as ‘gender fluid.’

“The quarantined area that Lazowski and Matulewicz created became a haven for Polish Jews, who could hide in Rozwadów under the cover of the fake epidemic without fear of the Nazis discovering them. All told, the doctors saved an estimated 8,000 people from being killed or imprisoned during their three-year campaign.”

Graphic: Hillary vs. Trump on their law-breaking, relationships with shady parties, and general transparency.

My keyboard went fwoomph, so I got a teeny computer. September 9, 2016

Posted by Erin Ptah in Personal.
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Cheapest lil’ model the Best Buy had in stock. Doesn’t weigh much more than an actual paper notebook. I haven’t worked on a screen this small since the era of the text-only interface. (And/or had the screensaver that this usericon mimics.)

My main computer has the biggest screen a laptop can handle, and a huge chassis to hold it up. It’s a tank. It could eat this thing for breakfast.

(All my devices get sci-fi names. The big laptop is Homura. The bitty one is now Nagisa.)

It was advertised as having a 32GB hard drive. Which, in practice, means 28. Which, since it has an operating system installed on it, left 15 for…using. I installed a couple programs and copied over about 2% of my music collection, so within an hour of being started up, it was down to 10.

So, yeah, I’m going to be light on the “new art” front for a week or so. The main laptop is nigh-unusable for art programs when half my keyboard shortcuts are muted, and I’m not even sure the tiny one could handle the weight of a Photoshop install, let alone find space to save the art afterward.

But I can keep on top of the Internet in the meantime, and get a backlog of actual drawing in physical sketchbooks…and maybe do some writing for a change?

Seriously, it feels like I could snap this thing in half with my bare hands if I really tried. It’s adorable.

Wednesday Multifandom Rec Post, 9/7 September 7, 2016

Posted by Erin Ptah in Recommendations.
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Hello From The Magic Tavern | Arnie/Chunt | T | (untitled ficlet)

“I’m not sure I feel that comfortable sleeping with a guy who was a badger just a few days ago.”
Sailor Moon | Ceres, Minako | T | doppelgäng

My life before hers, or: Ceres has pink hair. — Ceres, Venus.
Doctor Who | G | Ten/Donna, Doctors | The Ten Weddings of Donna Noble

Ten husbands, ten regenerations, I couldn’t help it, sorry.
Battlestar Galactica, Star Trek TNG | Gaeta, ensemble | K+ | Going Native

What do you do when you’re a lost Starfleet officer in the Beta Quadrant? You blend in and hope for the best. [Gaeta was from Earth all along, Enterprise makes first contact with the Fleet, and the crossover worldbuilding is amazing.]
Superman | Clark, Lois | T | “To be clear,” Clark asked, “did I just help you commit a felony?”

He looked down at Lois, and his inexplicably mischievous demeanor conspired with the slight disarray of his blue-black curls to make him look younger than usual. “What *did* we do in there?”
Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magika | Homura/Madoka | T | Magical Girl

Madoka never did tell Homura what her wish was. But when Homura began traveling back in time, it became all too obvious. [MTF Madoka.]
Madoka Magica, US Politics | Bernie, Trump, ensemble | T | Bernie Magica

He has a loving family and best friends, laughs and cries from time to time… Bernie Sanders, an eighth grader of USA middle school, is one of those who lives such a life. One day, he had a very capitalistic encounter. He doesn’t know if it happened by chance or by fate yet. This is a fateful encounter that can change his destiny- This is the beginning of the election.
Harry Potter | Voldemort!Harry, ensemble | T | Seventh Horcrux

The presence of a foreign soul may have unexpected side effects on a growing child. I am Lord Volde…Harry Potter. I’m Harry Potter. In which Harry is insane, Hermione is a Dark Lady-in-training, Ginny is a minion, and Ron is confused.
DC Comics | Bruce | G | Internet conspiracy theory fic

bruce wayne maintains a presence on all conspiracy theory boards with the screen name BruceWayneIsTheBatman
DC | Martha, Jonathan, baby!Clark | T | [untitled time travel fic]

The first time a man from the future showed up at Martha Kent’s house, Clark Kent was two years old.
Doctor Who, Buffy | Anya, Ten | T | THE LIFE CYCLE OF THE CRACKING MOSH TOAD (fragor beelzebufo), by A.C.E. Jenkins.

Ten and Anya in a bar, post-Doomsday/post-Hells Bells, commiserating on their problems and discovering that Pete’s World is the world without shrimp.
Steven Universe | Steven, Centipeetle, Gems | G | Corrupted, Corrosive

Centipeetle is the first gem to be fixed once Steven figures out how, but she has been broken so long she is unsure of many things.
Dresden Files, Beyond Belief | Frank/Sadie, Harry | G | House Taken Over

Harry Dresden meets the Doyles, and they happen to need his help.
Harry Potter, Stargate | Harry, DA ensemble | T | D.S.S. Requirement

The Dumbledore’s Army use the Room of the Requirement to get themselves a spaceship.
Steven Universe | Steven, Jasper | G | Transference Rehabilitation

Steven, believing that Jasper has a chance to become more good and not be so mean, offers to try to teach her niceness.
Steven Universe | Peridot/Amethyst | G | jump then fall into me

“It would improve the integrity of the group if I were able to fuse with another Crystal Gem,” Peridot said stiffly. “I believe that you are the best initial candidate.”
Jeeves & Wooster, Doctor Who | Bertie, Jeeves, Jack, Ten, ensemble | G | Jeeves and the Last Time Lord

Bertie’s even more confused than usual when two lunatics who appear to know his valet show up in London.
Steven Universe | Rose/Pearl | T | Attention to Pearls

While visiting White Diamond’s court, Rose Quartz takes an interest in an unusually damaged Pearl. And not a moment too soon . . .
DCU (Animated) | Clark/Bruce | T | A Wedding, a First Meeting, and a Honeymoon (in that order)

Superman and Batman discover a hitch in their wedding plans. Luckily their friends are willing to help them get past it.

The voter fraud is coming from inside the GOP September 6, 2016

Posted by Erin Ptah in News Roundup.
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“Donald Trump’s new presidential campaign chief is registered to vote in a key swing state at an empty house where he does not live.” Well, would you look at where the voter fraud is.

“Did one of Alma Powell’s donors ever ask for a better seat at a Powell-era function? Nobody knows, because nobody would think to ask.

“We do not like Hillary Clinton, but not because she is woman, no no. We are young Americans with soft hands who do not think it is shameful to vote for a female who has never strangled a wolf.”

“Hillary Rodham Clinton is a liberal Democrat on domestic matters, and Bernie Sanders is a socialist. They voted the same way 93 percent of the time in the two years they shared in the Senate.” An analysis of the differences.

“Fifty of the nation’s most senior Republican national security officials, many of them former top aides or cabinet members for President George W. Bush, have signed a letter declaring that Donald J. Trump ‘lacks the character, values and experience’ to be president and ‘would put at risk our country’s national security and well-being.'”

“A former North Carolina staffer for Donald Trump’s presidential campaign is claiming in a lawsuit that its then-state director pulled a gun on him and that senior campaign officials refused to do anything about it.

“When Trump wishes the Olympic team good luck, he’s tweeting from his iPhone. When he’s insulting a rival, he’s usually tweeting from an Android. Is this an artifact showing which tweets are Trump’s own and which are by some handler?” Detailed text analysis says…sure looks like it.

“Thirty times, they caught him. Trump had misstated sales at his condo buildings. Inflated the price of membership at one of his golf clubs. Overstated the depth of his past debts and the number of his employees. That deposition — 170 transcribed pages — offers extraordinary insights into Trump’s relationship with the truth.”

Tiny heart / Tiny hands / What kind of monster will not pay a children’s band?

Monday Works Roundup, 9/5/16 September 5, 2016

Posted by Erin Ptah in Leif & Thorn, Works Roundup.
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Leif & Thorn
Under rosy covers (art | Leif/Thorn | NSFW-ish)
Leif Explains a Metaphor (panel | Leif/Thorn | worksafe)
An armful of Leif (art | Leif/Thorn | worksafe)
Beach Thorn (wallpaper | Thorn, Leif | worksafe)

Big Hero 6
Monster kisses (sketch | Hiro/Fred | worksafe)
Shoulder kisses (sketch | Hiro/Wasabi | worksafe)

Save me from the snowball (sketch | Hans/Anna | worksafe)

Harry Potter
Why are you interested? (comic | Lucius/Hermione | G)

That Crystal Gem aesthetic (art | Tip, DieAnne | worksafe)

Steven Universe
C’mere, sis. (art | Amethyst, poofed!Jasper | worksafe)
Record Setting Pearl (art | Pearls | worksafe)
Did somebody lose a Pearl? (art | Pearl, Bismuth | worksafe)
Disco Mom (art | Bismuth | worksafe)

Dogwood layout (old sketch, worksafe)
Arizona Officer (commissioned portrait, worksafe)

This Week in But I’m A Cat Person:
The inevitable Pokemon Go gag.

This Week in Leif & Thorn:
With Thorn deep in a flashback, it’s up to Leif to protect him.