keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
* Via [ profile] yhlee, musical stairs on YouTube!

* Also via [ profile] yhlee, A Regency Romance in 2 Minutes.

* Michael M. Jones puts out an open call for submissions to his new anthology, Scheherazade's Facade: Fantastical Tales of Gender Bending, Cross-Dressing and Transformation.

* Recent Strange Horizons pieces that are excellent: poem "Thirteen Scifaiku for Blackbirds" by Joanne Merriam and story "Minghun: Unlikely Patron Saints, No. 5" by Amy Sisson.

* [ profile] yhlee (Yoon Ha Lee) has an awesome story up at Beneath Ceaseless Skies called "The Pirate's Daughter," about words and poetry and music and awesomeness.

* Another enrapturing story of music from Beneath Ceaseless Skies: Michael Anthony Ashley's "To Kiss a Granite Choir," Part 1 and Part 2.

* Quite the depressing, and truthful, article about grad school in the humanities.
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* Eunoia, a constrained-writing experiment by Christian Bök.

* Via [ profile] yhlee, the constrained-writing group Oulipo: Ouvroir de littérature potentielle.

* Also via [ profile] yhlee, 25 subliminal-messaging logos.

* Via [ profile] mrissa: [ profile] swan_tower aka Marie Brennan is offering a free novella, Deeds of Men, online.

* Just a call-out to the Secular Coalition for America.

* Helping those with Mormon interests. A parody, although I don't think it makes fun of Mormonism in particular rather than religion in general.

* Lee's Art Shop's 30-second pen primer.

* Via [ profile] rilina, the top 10 hot Asian actors.
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
* Happy St. Patty's Day, everyone! Have some (quite a lot, actually) free Celtic music in celebration.

* Over at Dear Author, Jane reviews the absolutely hilarious(ly bad) erotic romance Knight Moves by Jamaica Layne.

* Also via [ profile] telophase, the Houston Zoo unveils a squeeeeeee (aka red panda).

* And again via [ profile] telophase, a so-adorable cat cafe.

* Articles on Tibetan marriage practices and polyandry. I would love to see some fantasy based on this practice.

* Via [ profile] telophase, the Nothing But Nets campaign sends mosquito nets to Africa to prevent malaria. Which reminds me: [ profile] rachelmanija, is there an official nonprofit front for that manga-for-Native-American-reservations charity you promoted a while back? In a little over a month I'll be in a position to choose a service project to support, as my personal "Division Project." As the time draws closer, I'll probably make a separate post seeking suggestions. Malaria nets were heavily promoted just this past year, so I'd like to choose something more obscure.

* The very neat Book Cover Archive.

* From Lifehacker, a simple but beautifully illustrated site for world city weather forecasts.

* Readability may be one of the best bookmarklets ever. Choose your preferred layout, drag the link to your toolbar, and instantly reformat pages for easier reading.

* The classic reading test!

* [ profile] sierrawyndsong writes on pseudononymity from a journalist's perspective--as a matter of public record. Warning for tone. For a different, also semi-expert perspective, Jane from Dear Author discusses the constitutional right to speak anonymously. I can't argue with either about the legal aspect, but I still believe in the ethical aspect--and revealing someone's identity without their permission is simply, purely unethical.

* Naamen writes a moving and painful response to RaceFail '09, Cut #999.

* [ profile] spiralsheep posits a theory on the harassment received by [ profile] mac_stone and [ profile] medievalist.

* Finally, I will make a separate post for this soon because it inadvertently became very very important to me: via [ profile] coffeeandink, at John Scalzi's Whatever, Mary Anne Mohanraj presents a racism 101 primer. Such things are not new; however, as far as I have seen, this part is:
I generally use the definition of racism that argues that in the world we currently live in, everyone’s racist, and when I want to talk about prejudice + institutionalized power, I try to say so explicitly.
Yes, oh yes. For so many reasons.
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
* Via Dave Wolverton's email list, how to sketch a novel in an hour (a free writing exercise). I'm going to try this tonight, hopefully--the Snowflake Method is a bit too overwhelming when I've only got a tiny inkling of what's going on.

* [ profile] yhlee and [ profile] rachelmanija have launched [ profile] springfluff, "a no-stress, no-deadline fandom gift exchange"!

* Why skilled immigrants are leaving the United States--the same reason why my father, who has a Ph.D. and is a Canadian citizen (so not even from the high-immigrant countries of China and India), waited five years to receive permanent residency.

* Jo Walton ([ profile] papersky) on real world reading for fantasy writers. An old link, but obviously still relevant.

* The Bush Administration's memos regarding the War on Terror.

* For Asian faces, M. Night Shyamalan goes to Virginia--not the most informed news article ever, but it does give [ profile] aang_aint_white much-needed press coverage.

* Via [ profile] yhlee, Cake Wrecks on the problem with phone orders. Laugh-out-loud funny.

* Did you know there's a Discworld MUD? I haven't tried it yet, but it tempts me...
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
Yuletide is due in exactly 10 days, and I haven't written a single word yet. Nor have I even finished rereading the book, although I think I have enough of a refresher to write on. Strangely, I am not yet in panic mode, probably because I'm panicking about other nearer things. And last year, I wrote my fic in two sittings three days before the deadline. I didn't even hate it. Still, I don't know if I can pull off the same feat when ficcing an author I idolize. Not to mention that I have secured a beta in the form of kate_nepveu, so I should be answerable to her and finish my story earlier. I do have some vague noodling, but no concrete ideas--any prompt suggestions, for image/theme especially? I am generally incapable of cramming plot into 1000 words and will not have the energy or willpower to set myself up to write more.

* Almost a month late, but better late than never: POC in SF Carnival, IBARW3 Edition. Blogging about racism isn't limited to one week!

* On SH, William Mingin's review of Realms: the First Year of Clarkesworld Magazine edited by Nick Mamatas and Sean Wallace provides links to free stories, Clarkesworld being a free online magazine. With good taste, I might add--I had read two of the stories in the anthology already from internets-linkage. I skimmed the others, but my favorite is definitely the cutting and powerful tale by Michael de Kler (who is unknown to me), "The First Female President." I admit that I have a weak spot for dystopia politics; still.

* [ profile] two_star, whom I know solely via [ profile] yhlee for his awesome song "The Maid of Féil," discusses the look-and-say mathematical sequence and fractalizes it. The result is quite pretty.

* Not atheistic, really--God for the Godless: Salman Rushdie's Secular Sermon.

* Let me Google that for you.

* 28 reasons that Twilight the movie is better than Twilight the book, presented as a picture essay; also, the terribly intelligent [ profile] helen_keeble with adroit analysis of Twilight's appeal that resonates with me for perhaps obvious reasons.

* For those who care, the College Board's new SAT score choice policy and how it may be no help at all.

* Finally, xkcd posters! This is so going on my Xmas wishlist, if only as a self-reminder. The Online Communities poster would be so much fun to put in my room. And about half the products would be good presents for one programmer-geek friend, but unfortunately (and fortunately) I've already bought his present (it was a lot cheaper too).

A final musing: exactly how much do I love Semagic with quick links, quick user-links, and sensible HTML implementation? Much.
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
I am much entertained by browsing the dictionary. Did you know Viagra was coined before Google? Online dictionary/thesaurus searches are invaluable when I'm writing, but for pure language adoration, nothing beats a good college dictionary.

A friend of [profile] laitma's once compared abandoned stories to aborted babies (also, I believe, a lack of plot to missing one eye). Apt, if colorful.
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Via [personal profile] fairfeather: A parody of rejection letters. It made me giggle rather strangely, deep in my throat and low. Go figure.
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I know Cicada is currently not accepting submissions, but is it still taboo to note/allude to one's age on the cover letter to there? Since it's a YA magazine targeted toward teens, etc.

School starts next week, so of course my writing muse has decided to speak up, loudly. Will mail out Test of Faith soon probably, and I'm itching to start on the non-survivors story.

Lastly, a question for everyone: what is freedom? (I've decided to change the responsibility lecture in ToF to one on freedom, but I have no idea what Elena should say.)

And I still have a headache. I went to bed at 10pm last night because it hurt to keep my eyes open. Am hoping that this is not a side effect of the new antibiotics, but not hoping very optimistically.
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
Between Worlds: Women Writers of Chinese Ancestry
by Amy Ling
212 pages (hardcover)
Genre: Nonfiction

I have to return this to the library tomorrow, and unfortunately I'm only on Chapter 3 of 5. But I'll try my best to review it fairly, because it's definitely worthwhile reading for educating oneself on both racism and sexism. A Chinese woman suffered from two major oppressions: by the males of her own race, and by white people regardless of gender. The writing style is academic but accessible.

1. Writing As Rebellion, Historical and Contextual Backgrounds
An introduction of sorts, covering background information. Oriental stereotypes in the West, sexism in China, and the few Chinese-American women writers are all discussed. Very useful overview.

2. Pioneers and Paradigms: The Eaton Sisters
An entire chapter is devoted to analyzing the Eurasian sisters Edith and Winnifred Eaton, also known by the pen names Sui Sin Far and Onoto Watanna, respectively. Ling discusses at length the reasoning, implications, and consequences of the sisters' differing choices--Edith intentionally chose a Chinese-sounding name and aimed to become a martyr for the Chinese cause in America, while Winnifred chose to take on a Japanese identity and thus made a living off writing romance novels. The sisters, born of an American father and Chinese mother, also each wrote an autobiography (but again differing greatly) which sheds some light upon their choices.

In particular, the discussion of Chinese people being seen as heathens "in desperate need of Christian salvation" (48) disturbed me, not least because I don't believe that religion is necessary to be civilized and moral. And miscegnation, that term so debated in recent times, is also mentioned in telling how the interracial romances in Onoto Watanna's novels were acceptable "as long as the couple was white male/Japanese female" (51). In other words, as long as the white male was shown in a position of power and the Asian female as a stereotype.

3. Focus on China: Stances Patriotic, Critical, and Nostalgic
I am only on page 63, a little into this chapter, but it looks to be about exaclty what the title indicates. Detailed discussion of several Chinese-American writers and relevant themes in their writings.

4. Focus on America: Seeking a Self and a Place
From skimming, there is one section that I want to paraphrase. In discussing the autobiography Echo of a Cry by Mai-mai Sze, Ling quotes Sze after she purposefully sits next to a black woman in the cafeteria at college: "['Colored people'] still implies inferiority of a kind, doesn't it, as if 'colored people' were not up to others? When you think of it, we're all colored except the pure white man. And is there such a thing?" (107-8) That made me think of the widely used term POC (people of color), which suffers from the same negative connotation--but there isn't really a term to replace it yet, so we keep using it. (Although [personal profile] yhlee's "chromatic" shows promise.)

5. Righting Wrongs by Writing Wrongs
A difficult chapter to describe, but I will say that the conclusion on pages 177-9 speaks eloquently about the "between-world condition" of Chinese women in America.

The annotated bibliography on pages 191-9 is far too long to reproduce here, but I'll list authors cited under the cut so that the interested may seek out their work (though if you're that interested, I highly recommend reading this book first, at least the annotations).

And I'll note that my own family name appears above. But more importantly--what does it say, that all the known female Chinese-American writers can be named in a manageable list?
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
Apparently "fantasy of manners" (which I guess I write, in connection with the general term "political fantasy") is also called "mannerpunk." But mannerpunk sounds so inelegant! It completely contradicts the whole idea.

And in other news, yhlee is quoted in the mythpunk Wikipedia article. Link goes to a 404, though.
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
I blog because I love books, writing, and connecting to other people with similar interests. I blog because it means I can write about books--what better is there? I blog because it gives me an outlet, a way to vent frustration, anger, shock, and any other emotion you can name (though the more ranty posts tend to be friends-locked). I blog because I love the community. And finally, I blog for myself and the world--to future-me, and to anyone out there like me, looking for the words of a kindred soul.

My own personal meme, because I think it's an important question to ask yourself. Be tagged if you wish.
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
"If there's a book you really want to read but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it."
--Toni Morrison
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
This is... amazing. Definitely my Hysterical Moment of the Week.
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)

This makes me want to call Sharon and ask if I can write about her cockatiels. :O An excerpt from

[profile] ivoryink:

Write one paragraph each describing a horse, a dog, and a cat. Don't mention the animal portrayed and avoid anthropocentric assumptions of thoughts and emotions. Try to engage all the senses: let the reader pet the beast with you, for instance. If you have animals around, observe and describe them in detail. Otherwise, rely on pictures. Don't worry about being "pretty," only precise. [195-196 Novakovich, Fiction Writer's Workshop]

(Not an exact quote, since I added some of my own clarification.)


keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
A rewrite of an old poem.

keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
So, [profile] ivoryink is not completely friends-only, because I can't resist making this entry public so I can link to it. Because everyone needs more good writing quotes.


May. 22nd, 2007 10:19 pm
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
It's official -- I'm attending Alpha!! Just got the email today saying that I was granted a $600 scholarship.


Mar. 17th, 2007 10:06 pm
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
The first draft is done!
keilexandra: Adorable panda with various Chinese overlays. (Default)
Now that I'm caught up on books, I can post about life. I'm applying to Alpha! I don't know how hard it is to be accepted, and if I don't get at least half the cost covered by scholarship, I can't go because I'm also getting a new wooden clarinet soon (Eeek!) On top of that, I don't even have a suitable story submission written. Test of Faith is already long enough, but I just finished the first non-introduction scene. I should be able to wrap it up under 6k words, though. But the deadline is March 31st! After DSTPs, I'll only have a week, so I'm going to try and finish the first draft before testing ends, and then I can go begging for critiquers the final week. I've already secured Abby's promise, so that's one down! XD

So, anyone want to read and critique a 2-6k (currently unfinished) fantasy short story in like 2-3 days, the last week of March? It's a tight time commitment, but I'd be ever so grateful.


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January 2011



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