xifeng: (Default)
Title: The Skythian Woman
Author: Wang Xi-feng ([personal profile] xifeng)
Fandom: Trojan War/Homer
Warnings: Warfare-related violence, bad language, long-ass death scene.
Summary: Achilles and Penthesilea, retold. Only the words are mine.

The Skythian Woman )
xifeng: (Default)
This morning, I rolled out of bed, went to go get my every-other-weekly pedicure (because my feet get nasty without much provocation and I'd rather pay someone for them than do it myself), and found that it was much colder in the house than outside. My toenails are relatively subtle this time, if one can consider fluorescent pink to ever be subtle. (We're moving into sandal weather, so I have to look normal for a while. I don't favor shy and muted colors.)

Then I went to go get my ears pierced. (This is going to be the last hole in my lobes; I'm going to gradually move on to other stuff after this.) This is my third lobe piercing (for both ears), so I know the drill by now; the pain wasn't as bad as when they try to draw blood at the doctor's office, but now we've moved on to the HOLY SHIT MY EARS ARE ITCHY AND THERE ISN'T ANYTHING I CAN DO ABOUT IT stage.

And THEN I went to the library downtown, where they were having a small book sale, and since I cannot help myself if I see books, I immediately relieved them of a stack from the history and biography sections and they relieved me of $13. I got A Delusion of Satan (about the Salem Witch Trials), which I'd only been wanting forever, and Chrysanthemums and Thorns (which I seem to recall [livejournal.com profile] duokinneas read a while back but that was about 5 years ago so I don't even know). I got other stuff, but that's what springs immediately to mind.

Anticlimactically, I then came home and made dinner. We had smoked turkey sausage on the grill pan (I'd wanted to grill outside, but the sky kept making noises like it was going to rain), cheesy biscuits, and coleslaw. The coleslaw was a little on the Cajun side, so I halved the cayenne pepper to avoid cruelty to lolmom, whose delicate system cannot tolerate the spicy food.

Lolmom has finally had the porch roof fixed, after lo these many years; one of the parishioners at her church is in construction and does roofing, and they're friendly, so when he hit a slow patch, they came over earlier this week to fix the roof. No more need we worry about it caving in and killing the next person who steps foot on the roof! Lolmom is very excited about this, as it means that once the porch is hosed off, she can go outside and enjoy the weather. She's especially looking forward to this on Mother's Day (for the British and Australians on the flist, our Mother's Day is in May), when X-chan will come up again to help her clean out the garage and we'll have tea for dinner. (I told lolmom I could either spend the day in the garage or the kitchen and to pick what she wanted. She chose the kitchen. I have no idea what the tea menu is going to be, aside from turkey and avocado sandwiches.)

I am looking at the beginnings of a draft and I have given one of the main characters a tail and I do not for the life of me remember why this is. I assume it will be important at some point.

Also: [livejournal.com profile] arisha, I owe you a response to your lengthy comment on Troy, Achilles' character arc, &c. Will get to that but probably not tonight; still have things to do that aren't done. (Go me.)
xifeng: (OMG YAY)
Good things:

+ My performance was rly good last month, so I actually got to have incentive pay on this check :D I am forcing myself to put the extra money into savings, on top of what I usually put in there anyway, but hey. My boss says I've shown quite a bit of improvement (I was struggling with a few things earlier, so I'm glad my efforts are paying off, literally and figuratively).

+ My federal and state tax returns have been accepted (I e-filed). I don't know if this just means they went through okay, or if it's more along the lines of "okay you were poor in 2010, plz accept refund". If e-file is correct, I can expect a refund. I am torn between putting that in savings vs. putting it towards my MasterCard (it wouldn't knock out the ENTIRE balance, but it would leave me with a much smaller debt there, and I would really like to get this monkey off my back). I tend to be pretty conservative so it's probably going into savings.

+ We have delicious leftovers. I made asparagus-and-salmon spring rolls over the weekend, and last night lolmom was home early (she went to some job thing in Louisville) so we made chickpea-and-avocado tacos. Tomorrow night, I definitely see some reverse-engineered asparagus salad in our future. Also, the new Cooking Light came and there is a picture of shrimp Cobb salad on the cover and I need to eat that nau plz.

+ X-chan is coming to visit for Easter! She wants us to color and hide eggs for her. (This was one of her favorite things about Easter as a kid, and lolmom had to get more and more savvy as we aged.) The bitch of this is that we have to plan a real meal, though, for various reasons; Mom wants a cake, which I am all in favor of, but we kind of need to see what X-chan wants. Worst-case scenario? OH NOES, DELICIOUS FRUIT SALAD!

+ I don't think I remembered how much I love classics--I mean, I know I do, obviously, but sometimes it kind of gets pushed to the back--and I just finished the Iliad (again, I re-read it every year, IT NEVER GETS OLD U GAIZ) and I might be talking about Homer in here because Greek epic poetry makes me happy and so do Homer and the Trojan War. Oh my God you guys this is so vital to me, for fuckin' srs.

+ My package full of jewelry came. (This sounds really extravagant until you consider that it was more at costume jewelry, but hey.) Pictures to follow, eventually.

+ Hot guy is profile-stalking me on OKStupid. Possibly he's just laughing at my venomous harpyness, which is fine by me, but hey! Something pleasant to look at! (Unfortunately a lot of the women who profile-stalk me are looking for threesomes and I have a rather snippy note in there to the effect that Madame Lee don't play that. Tragically, no lesbian couples have ever approached me about their threesome fantasy. Also as a parenthetical aside I think I might be a happier person if I would just, you know, stop being so repressed about my queerness. And maybe say Hi to girls once in a while.)

+ Mmm. Talenti Gelato's pistachio ice cream, so good. (They also make the only chocolate ice cream I actually like.)

Minor-league annoyances:
After the jump so you can ignore them, because seriously if these are my worst problems I'm doing pretty well )

All in all: l33 up, circumstances down. Peace.
xifeng: (Default)
Further chronicles of the fanfic-writing heartbreak of l33:

WHY DO I GET SO EMOTIONALLY INVESTED IN THIS SHIT )

Also, now that I have discovered the existence of the partisan film, I must watch them all and I cannot for they are not available on my side of the pond. HNNNUUUUUUUURRRRRRRRRR.
xifeng: (Default)
I seem to be writing some Trojan War fanfic (again) because I am totally not reading the Iliad again at all why do you ask, and so I have this idea and I know where the story is ultimately going to wind up. Except the thing is that it does have to do with geography (which is why I usually have three maps of Bronze Age Greece and environs pulled up when I'm working on it), so I'm already at Argos, and you guys I haven't written Diomedes that much. (Actually, I think I've only written him once, and that was in "Reveille".) And I have to think about what he's like. I mean, I know the stories and all that, and I'm trying to gently but firmly put Phillip Parotti's brilliant "Diomedes at Aulis" (the first story from his equally brilliant The Greek Generals Talk) at the back of my mind so it can't get to me, and ARRRRRGH. This is really hard because the story is set at the very beginning of the war (actually, even before there really is a war) so I can't bounce him off anybody else from the story just yet. Except maybe his first wife, though I haven't given her a lot of thought and I don't know what she's like.

I mean, for crap's sake, I can write Achilles and Odysseus and Clytemnestra with my eyes shut. (Actually, I have to think about Clytemnestra because my version of Clytemnestra is a very manipulative person and my own idea of Cunning Machinations really puts the B into "subtle", but I can usually figure her out.) And it's not that I don't like Diomedes (shit, I like all the Greeks, except Palamedes. Oh, and the Lesser Ajax kind of had it coming); it's just that my characterization of him hasn't had to stand on its own yet. In "Reveille", I bounced him off Odysseus and that worked, but I can't do that here because he hasn't even met Odysseus yet, or anybody really.

And then on top of all that, the Hurt/Comfort Bunny bit me and now there's some goddamn fic set at Aulis parked on my hard drive.

I should just give it up and write Achilles/Patroclus for the rest of my "career". ARE YOU HAPPY [livejournal.com profile] jurhael~

TL;DR: I suck at writing, also expect some shitty Trojan War fic in the near future. This is guaranteed to delight only [livejournal.com profile] arisha, and possibly also Jo and [livejournal.com profile] duokinneas.
xifeng: (advice followed only too well)
I should be in bed, but I'm not. Consequently, this is a stupid rambly brain-dumping kind of post.

Important shit: Happy belated birthday to [livejournal.com profile] hatefulsandwich, and also to X-chan, who got some sparkly seahorse stickers that have to be hidden from [livejournal.com profile] duokinneas.

Some stuff about fairy tales and female roles and I don't even )
xifeng: (Default)
It rained today, thus ensuring that I did not have to water the plants again. VICTOLY. Also, the first green pepper of the season was ready to pick. Also also, we have eggplants and more tomatoes on the way, but I'm not sure if the eggplants are ready to pick yet and the tomatoes definitely are not. Speaking of tomatoes, I have been vigorously campaigning for GAZPACHO TIME but am undecided about which recipe to use; we made a green gazpacho last year (or the year before) which was very good, but Julia Child also has a recipe for a black bean gazpacho that I'd like to try, and the newest Cooking Light has a more traditional tomato-based gazpacho. HEY I SHOULD HAVE A POLL Y/N?

I finally got everything off the floor of my room, with the exception of stuff that needs to be there (like the fan, and also the shoe rack I've been meaning to put together for, oh, like, years). Hurrah! I now just need to clean under the bed and nightstand, and THEN I get to start in on drawers and closets and other shit. Yes, this is a very thorough cleaning. I am a poor housekeeper, I might add, partially because I view cleaning as "not of general interest" and partially because I was too depressed to give a shit about very much until fairly recently.

Got a very ebullient note from J, who is apparently happy to hear from me (which I did nothing to deserve). I'd certainly rather that than the alternative. Actually, speaking of exes, I have been kind of turning over relationship shit in my head, but have yet to formulate any coherent thoughts about that, so you may or may not be safe from those cerebellum-eroding thoughts in the future.

I have started working on Hittite Week, you'll be delighted to know. HITTITE WEEK: SMASH HIT OF 2011. Also, I would be honored if any of you would name your potential or actual rock bands "Hittite Week Has Been Indefinitely Delayed" or "Hittite Week Is Coming Soon" or something like that.

In theory, INDOT is going to close IN-62 next week. In practice, they had better not because I cannot get to work any other way and will drive through their blockades (lol j/k).

Also, I kind of want to write some shitty Trojan War fic now. THANK YOU [livejournal.com profile] arisha.
xifeng: (Default)
I am sure this would have taken me less than the allotted two months if I hadn't become disgusted with some of the sentences and rewritten them, thus necessitating the rewriting of OTHER sentences that were basically about the same thing.

Speshful thanks to [livejournal.com profile] momo for her speshful help.

Fandom: The Iliad
Themeset: One
Rating: Hard R for language, warfare-related violence.
Warnings: Long, poorly-written, obsessive revisiting of some scenes over and over again. Also, language and warfare-related violence, for those who are offended by that.

Klikkit. )
xifeng: (ACHILLES OMG SO TRAJIK!!!1111)
+ I had a series of extremely weird dreams last night. Ugh. Actually, I slept about 12 hours; I went to bed around 9 and woke up a little before 9 a.m.

+ Based on the same frequently-advertised RPG ad I keep finding in my inbox, I'm about to come to the conclusion that Gor is fucking stupid. (No pun intended. Mind you, I am a big fan of good clean BDSM, but I'm not into the master/slave thing except once in a blue moon.) Although I did get a good laugh out of the subject line: "Serious Gorean members for online". Uh huh huh huh huh, members. Heh heh heh m heh heh.

I'm tempted to apply for the express purpose of playing the spider plant of Gor, but somehow I don't think the GM would see the joke. Have you ever noticed how some people take their jollies way too fucking seriously?

(On the other hand, I'm sure a total stranger who came across my running commentary on everything would be like, "Wow, Lee sure thinks samurai are SRS BSNS," so who am I. Except I'm not, you know, fapping to chanbara films or anything. Never having sex again would be an entirely fair trade-off if it meant I got to do a lot of things I want to do. :D)

+ Ihara Saikaku wrote arguably some of the most lolarious literature of Tokugawa Japan. I am omgsoinlove with Tales of Samurai Honor (the title is satirical; a lot of them are about anything but). Particularly recommended: "The Hackberry House, Cursed by the Gods". Admittedly, those of you who actually look up the story (or a synopsis), read about halfway through, and are familiar with my sense of humor will break into groans of execration. Srry.

+ I HAS AN INT0RVIEW. :DDDD For a resumé I sent back in April, of all things. Still, ain't complaining! It's fairly close (on the east side of Evansville) and it's clerical. We'll see if it goes anywhere, but hell, nothing ventured nothing gained.

+ I CAN HAS UNEMPLOYMENT. It's not much, and I can only draw it for about two and a half months before my maximum allotment is up (so I have to find a job before the end of that time, no matter what it is), but hey, it does eliminate some of the immediate money worries.

+ It was so so so so so nice outside today. Sunny, but not too hot, and not humid at all. There was a good breeze blowing, too. :DDDD ♥

+ [livejournal.com profile] deliciouspastry has been updated, for the 1.5 of you who care about that sort of thing. [livejournal.com profile] momo will be glad to know that, thanks to her speshful help, I squeaked in juuust under the wire and got my fandom challenge done. I am taking a week off "assigned" fan writing to concentrate on some other projects (namely, cleaning up and posting "Kind", working on another fic tentatively titled "Penthesilea" because I have no imagination whatsoever, and t3h n0v3l). After that, God knows what'll happen.

+ I realize that nobody gives a shit about Greek mythology/Homer/classics/Trojan War fanfic, other than me, but right now that's what I feel like writing. IF PEOPLE AREN'T ON THEIR BEST BEHAVIOR, I CAN START WRITING SAMURAI FIC REAL FAST.
xifeng: (Default)
I will get caught up, damn it. It will happen. Anyway: Trojan War, gen, nonsexual partial nudity, word was "reveal".

Reveille )
xifeng: (i r l33 the ALL-P0NTIFICAT0R)
Because I feel exhausted and weak thanks to horrid bl33ding stuffs, and because I don't feel like bitching about the myriad evils of Santa Claus, I present you with a fic. I haven't been doing fic recs lately because a.) I suck, and b.) Thousand Ships shut down, which effectively cut off part of my supply.

She Walks in Beauty by one mourning dove. Not Trojan War fic proper, but worth your time. I'm not sure if this is a work in progress or not, but it is enjoyable, even if there are a few anachronisms and the prose is a little purple. (Also: I for one could do without "REVIEW PLEASE" at the bottom of every chapter, but I find it less egregious because this is well-written.) It follows the relationship between Persephone and Hades, and all in all it's a worthy effort.
What else has this author done? Nothing else, as far as I'm aware.

In unrelated news: 3054 words of t3h n0v3l are written. Which is not much, but I'm forcing myself to churn out a thousand words a day. I figure this is manageable.
xifeng: (Default)
I'm not really happy with the way this turned out; the word presented great possibilities, especially for this duo, but I think I may go back later and rework this one when I don't have anything else on my plate. The word of the day was "glum"; it's Trojan War fic, Achilles and Deidamia. Bad language, but nothing other than that.

Untitled )

Next up: yet more [livejournal.com profile] daily15 stuff! Hooray! (Or not, as the case may be.)
xifeng: (Default)
*cough*

In any case, here are this week's recs. I think I can hold out for a little longer, but that's the problem with small fandoms--there's usually slim pickings.

The Mad Princess by The Grammarian. This is yet another Cassandra story--but this time, there's a twist. It features Cassandra as a young child, before all the madness and the prophesies. The ending, in particular, is beautifully sinister.
What else has this author done? Her other work is predominantly in Phantom of the Opera fandom.

A Thousand Stars by Anaimos. Aeneas comes to aid Troy. Short, with vague hints of slash, and for some reason I'm a sucker for great final lines.
What else has this author done? Other Trojan War stuff, needless to say. I don't know if s/he writes in any other fandoms, or what those might be.

Under Odysseus. So technically, this isn't really fanfiction ('cause I'm gettin' into slim pickings here), but hey, it's hysterical and well worth a read. It purports to be the camp diary of Eurylochus, and it's funny as hell. I've no idea who the real author is or what else s/he may have done, but have a blast.
xifeng: (ACHILLES OMG SO TRAJIK!!!1111)
Okay, so I have errands to run, so here goes.

Heavenly Deluge by Thyme In Her Eyes. There isn't enough Clytemnestra fic in this world. While I don't altogether agree with her Clytemnestra, this is a damn fine fic--the prose is lush, but never over the top, and Clytemnestra's hatred and loss come through beautifully. The last line will give you chills.
What else has this author done? An awful lot of stuff! She's done some other Greek mythology work and written in a variety of fandoms, including an awful lot of FF7 work.

Two Drachmae by Gloria Mundi. I don't like Achilles/Hector, but I like this. It's sad and powerful, and the sorrow and longing come through so clearly. It's difficult to explain--go read it yourself.
What else has this author done? Awww, c'mon, guys, you know the drill. Visit her site, Imagin'd Glories.

Demand by Anaimos. Diomedes convinces Odysseus to come to Troy at the beginning of the war. Short, sweet, and slashy.
What else has this author done? A bit of other Trojan War stuff; I don't know about anything in any other fandom.
xifeng: (siiiiiing!)
Yes, it's time for the usual. You all know what happens on Sunday, so let's get on with it.

Phocian Lament by cillabub. On the eve of Orestes' return to Mycenae to take out his mother, Pylades reflects on his feelings for him. It's slashy, though not explicit; I've always thought that this would make for an interesting pairing, and was glad to see that someone had written about it.
What else has this author done? Her other work seems to be in Les Misèrables fandom. Visit her site, Rue de Mondetour.

Dakrua by Cinzia. This is a true drabble, being only 100 words long, but the author makes the most of it. It's brief, powerful, and awful (in the "awe-inspiring" sense of the word).
What else has this author done? Oh, you know the drill: some other stuff here and there, a lot of LOTR and Lotrips stuff. Visit her site, Cinzia's Web.

The First Farewell by Cairnsy. After Paris' marriage to Helen, Hector and Helenus have a conversation at a festival. I love the description in this piece, and the dialogue has a few nice turns of phrase as well.
What else has this author done? She's active in a fair amount of anime fandoms--check her FF.net profile for a complete list.
xifeng: (Default)
Or, um, it would have been if it hadn't rained half the day. But my Stakhanovite tactics paid off (or had better, as I enjoy receiving time-and-a-half), and then I got to go home and crash WHEEEEEEE YAY. Also, for the edification and delight of [livejournal.com profile] momo, I am hard at work on checking and responding to my e-mail. At long last. F'rinstance.

Anyway, we all know what Sunday means in these here parts, so without further ado, some recs!

goddess loving fool by sasori. Ignore the author's notes--they're rather jarring--but read the story itself. Despite a few minor grammatical errors, it's a pretty good piece about the reunion of Helen and Menelaus at Troy, at the end of the war.
What else has this author done? Most of her other work is in various anime fandoms, including RK, but she's also done some HP and Tamora Pierce-based fic as well.

Rites of Passage by Cinzia. Achilles, fourteen or so, is going to be educated, and although it is not the done thing, Patroclus will wait for him. The imagery is gorgeous--I'm a sucker for a good mental image--and I don't mind admitting that this one moved me to tears.
What else has this author done? A lot of it has been in LOTR and Lotrips fandom, but she's done some other work here and there. Visit her site, Cinzia's Web.

Fall by Helen. An encounter between Aeneas and Helen the night that Troy fell. It's violent and amazing; the complexity of Aeneas' mixed feelings towards her is beautifully emphasized.
What else has this author done? A bunch of other Trojan War stuff.
xifeng: (siiiiiing!)
I went into work yesterday, which once I conquered my natural aversion to working six days a week wasn't that bad. Also I've earned a reprieve, as I'll be in the office tomorrow instead of out of town. Huzzah! Mom's been slaving away at her own workplace, so last night we went to the Pasta Grill, which is near civilization but is in a business-and-restaurant plaza that I only visit about once a year, so I forgot where to turn and had to go back and get myself unlost. However, dinner was good. Mmmm, noodles and seafood with tomatoes and basil and olive oil. ♥♥♥

Also, I may have accidentally gone nuts in the bookstore and purchased some new stuff that, with a certain amount of finagling, I can convince myself that I really need. After all, I'd been drooling over Warriors of Medieval Japan for some time, and since I've been back on this Russian history kick it's only natural that I would need Gulag, and we're reading Crime and Punishment over to [livejournal.com profile] 0bsessed_reader this month, and I already have a couple of Alison Weir's books on Tudor history so it would be horrid and wrong for me to not buy The Six Wives of Henry VIII, since it is the second in the sequence. And I totally was not going to buy the other two samurai books at all, but they were cheap and I couldn't have lived with myself if I hadn't grabbed them RIGHT THAT INSTANT.

No. No, I don't have any samurai issues. None at all.

Also: fic recs for today! This is the post that keeps on giving. )
xifeng: (ACHILLES OMG SO TRAJIK!!!1111)
Yes, it's that time of the week again. I seem to be getting to slim pickings, but there are lo these many weeks left in the year. Enjoy.

Incomparably Cunning by Snoodle. A cute, clever, funny story about Odysseus and Penelope meeting for the first time, and the circumstances surrounding Helen's marriage to boot. Although this author's Clytemnestra isn't quite to my liking, Odysseus and Penelope are dead on, and it's funny without being stupid--a rare accomplishment in a humor fic indeed.
What else has this author done? Her work is pretty varied, including Buffy, POTC, and Narnia fanfic.

The Baths at Smyrna by Gloria Mundi. This is the sequel to last week's offering, "Pyrrha's Bracelet". Yes, I know there's a disproportionate amount of Gloria Mundi here, but damn if she isn't good. This is a brief encounter between Achilles and Odysseus, and a discussion of age and passion.
What else has this author done? Oh, you know what's coming next. Visit her site, Imagin'd Glories.

Fire and Ashes by Shirasade. Achilles reflects on his last night with Patroclus, and everything that he would have done differently. Bittersweet and beautifully imagined.
What else has this author done? Nothing that I know of, though she seems to have a few fansites here and there. Visit her site, Shirasade.net.
xifeng: (Default)
Since I was v. tired last week and fell off the wagon, I'm getting back on it this week. Here you go!

The Grief of Hecuba by Tari Gwaemir. This is based loosely on Ovid's Metamorphoses, and is a rare treasure in that it successfully makes the transition from homework assignment to work of fiction. The prose is lush and evocative, and by the end of the story, you realize exactly how and why Hecuba is all dried out.
What else has this author done? Most of her other work is in various anime fandoms (PMK, PoT, HnG, etc.). Visit her site, infinity.

Pyrrha's Bracelet by Gloria Mundi. Achilles/Odysseus! Squee! A nice, smutty little piece about the discovery of Achilles among Lycomedes' daughters at Skyros.
What else has this author done? You know the drill. Visit her site, Imagin'd Glories. *pimpity pimp pimp*

Life of a Hero by Qaddafi. The life of Achilles in several short vignettes. There's some great phrasing and powerful imagery here.
What else has this author done? Some other Trojan War stuff, as well as a fair amount of anime and other fanfiction. Visit their site, Bob Did It.
xifeng: (ACHILLES OMG SO TRAJIK!!!1111)
Fanfic recs for this week. Whee!

1.) Solace in the Cup by Freelance Muse. Dionysus comes to visit Cassandra in the last days before Hector's death, and leaves her with sweetness to dilute the sorrow. The prose is really lush, and the author uses imagery to great effect; the description is plentiful without being purple.
What else has this author done? Her work has been various--there's a little bit of everything.

2.) Firestorms by Tiamats Child. A sweet, sad fic about Cassandra and Andromache at the sack of Troy, taking refuge in the temple of Artemis. There's some nice imagery here, and most of all the mood of desperation and fatalism comes through.
What else has this author done? Most of her other work is in Les Miserables fandom and RPS, and she's done a few pieces based on Frances Hodgson Burnett's work as well.

3.) On Helen by Elandae. A brief description of Helen, physically and preternaturally. Short, but powerful.
What else has this author done? The only other work of hers that I know about is Trojan War fic.

[SPESHUL IRRELEVANT NOTE FOR [livejournal.com profile] momo: Yes, Ashley, I'm working on my e-mail even as we speak. This does not give you carte blanche to fall down on the job, though.]

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Wang Xi-feng

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