epershand: Quark, looking suspicious. (Quark is not impressed)
I have now completed my annual "snarking about yuletide fandoms" ritual. I enjoy that a lot, I think it might be one of my favorite parts of the challenge. It is just so cathartic.

Except normally I do it privately on chat with [personal profile] oliviacirce. And this year instead I spammed my twitter feed with it. Sorry guys! I... hit the hourly usage limit two hours consecutively. And learned that that doesn't actually keep me from tweeting. It just keeps me from viewing new updates on the page!

Anyway, the annual Hilariously Large Fandoms That Slipped Through The Cracks Due to Clever Tag Usage:


Presumably most of these will get cleaned up in the next couple of days, but I am just so fascinated by what the net result of moving from the old qualitative process to the new quantitative process has been. The old method didn't scale, obviously, but the new method has some fascinating loopholes.

Also: BEST FANDOM NEW I DISCOVERED WHILE TRAWLING THROUGH THE LIST? Michael Fassbender With Pugs (tumblr). That link is to the tumblr. Which is AMAZING.


(OMG I JUST ACCIDENTALLY DISCOVERED THE BROWSE TAGS BUTTON ON THE BETA DREAMWIDTH UPDATE PAGE. BEST.)
epershand: An ampersand (Default)
True to form, I left my yuletide nominations half-complete in a tab for too long and didn't submit them in time. \o/

Me and Yuletide: we are like water and oil.

Sweet Yuletide

Wednesday, 21 September 2011 00:10
epershand: A dory thinking about a bike. (fish need bicycles)
As Yuletide nominations season comes up, I'm thinking again about my rather odd relationship with Yuletide and trying to figure out whether I want to put in nominations.

The thing is, I've never actually participated in Yuletide, for any number of reasons. For a long time I simply wasn't completing fic, so making a commitment that I was unlikely to follow through on seemed like a bad call. This goes double given the intensity that is the month of December if you do anything at all that touches online advertising, which my work more than does. In the last couple of years, there have also been usability concerns--I don't want to AO3 bash because I mostly love them, but the webform to enter a challenge just does not get along with my brain at all in some fundamental way--the honest truth is that I've yet to successfully fill out any challenge form and get to the point of submission. I've started a few, and wound up giving up and wandering away every time.

And yet Yuletide is vital to me. Sitting down and abandoning myself to the flood of stories has become an essential part of getting through a week at my parents' without a car. I rec, I comment (oh boy do I comment--a few years ago I think I made more comments than anyone else who hadn't submitted a fic?) And, more recently, I've taken to lurking around the pinch hit list hoping to be inspired. My first completed story after eight years was last December, a New Years Resolution inspired by a request post that floated across the pinch-hitters list and was claimed by someone else.

So... I love Yuletide. I want to be with Yuletide. But DAMN am I a committmentphobe around Yuletide. I'm almost certainly not signing up this year, although I do hope to do some solid writing in late December. I just don't plan to *start* until December 26. So *given* all that, nominating fandoms seems uncool. On the other hand, what if I nominate fandoms other people won't think of until they see them on the list, and then they decide to request them? (I can talk myself into anything...)

Anyway, if I *were* to be nominating, I think I've got my list for this year narrowed down to:

Either fandom: mid-twentieth-century queers with an Auden + Isherwood focus OR just straight-up admit what I want and nom Lions and Shadows

Either The Magicians/The Magician Kings or Anathem, the two intellectual communities books of my 2010 heart. (Even though I'm rather fond of "With Blood They Wash in the Money", it makes me DEEPLY SAD that it's the only Anathem fic currently in the AO3. It's a Killjoys crossover and has only OCs from the Anathem universe. That book needs more love, damnit!)

Among Others SO MUCH AMONG OTHERS.
epershand: T-Rex from Dinosaur comics says "Utahraptor when I stand like this it means HUGS PLEASE" (T-rex needs hugs)
Ok, this was actually a very excellent Christmas. For one thing, my family's gradual mellowing of our celebration reached its nadir this year--yesterday my Mom said to me "Um, actually we haven't gotten you a gift yet." And then I said "It's ok, remember which daughter you're talking to?" And then she said "Um, what do you want?" And I said "A waffle iron." And then we went to the hardware store and bought one. There was no tree, and there were no lights, but we did make a nice lunch where my parents ate roast chicken and mashed potatoes and I ate vegetable quiche.

And my sister is down south with her boyfriend's family who are all about Christmas, so EVERYONE was happy! (I adore my sister to pieces, we just don't see eye-to-eye on the celebration of holidays and it was nice not to have to compromise.)

I am all about days where one is allowed to lounge about in one's pajamas reading Yuletide. (There's the exact Rebecca fic I've been searching the universe for! And Mary Poppins/Tipping the Velvet crossover smut! And Brontes! And fannish trends in Bellwether fic! And, and, and.) I've been cheerily updating my AO3 Bookmarks with my particular favorites, although the archive loading issues means not all of them have saved successfully and I'll have to go back through.

In general, I'm REALLY HAPPY about the recent changes to the archive, because they work to enable my way exactly of reading Yuletide. If I just want to say "Yay! I have read your story and it makes me happy" I can leave kudos--I'm leaving kudos on every story that grabs me for an actual read-through. If I want to leave a more in-depth comment I can comment on the story. If I want to track it for later and share it with others I can bookmark it.

The static version of the archive makes me feel ok about spawning my five million tabs for batch reading, and then once I finish each story I can jump back to the archive proper if necessary for commenting or bookmarking. And I don't even have to jump back for kudos! It's great--my absolute love and admiration goes out to the AO3 developer team.

Tonight my parents and I went to a shiva/havdalah service at the home of some family friends who just lost a loved one (Esther was 91 when she died last week and had acute Parkinson's). It was a beautiful service, and it felt so good to be sitting in a group singing in Hebrew, something that I've never actually done while at home--my spiritual home is something that I found for myself after leaving my literal home, and having the two united into one was just so wonderful to have. Also, if post-holiday smalltalk gets too frustrating, I now have the perfect conversational kryptonite in the form of "What did you do on Christmas?" "I went to a funeral." It's not 100% accurate but close enough if I don't want to deliver a lecture on Jewish mourning practices. #BadPerson.

So ultimately I'm really thankful for a lot of things about this Christmas:
  • A set of good friends with whom to be grinchy when I needed it--this year I think I had more conversations with people who were frustrated by the ubiquity of Christmas and the assumptions that come with it than I had where people made assumptions about the ubiquity of Christmas!

  • A really wonderful visit with my mom and dad.

  • A really lovely and peaceful Shabbat, concluding up with a gorgeous havdalah service.

  • YULETIDE

  • My sister's leg is healing rapidly from knee surgery and it sounds like she too is having the Christmas that she wants with her boyfriend and his family.


Thank you all, flist/droll. I love you.
epershand: A dory thinking about a bike. (fish need bicycles)
Possibly I veer towards the unusual. But that's what yuletide's all about, right? Anyway, as usual, this year's Yuletide has reaffirmed my faith in my own version of rule 34: If you think of an idea, someone has written Yuletide fic about it.

Yuletide recs )

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