jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
[updated October 3, 2013]

My profile has the general background, but herein is a list of links to things I've written that might give you a sense of me. Tagging came to LiveJournal, oh, 6 years after I started journalling, and I still haven't tagged most of my posts. I'm slowly working on going backwards and doing that. Really. Eventually.

What you'll see here is:
Mostly locked posts, for a variety of reasons. I'm generally happy to add most people to my locks these days. (I keep a very small number of more tightly focused filters for trusted-in-person friend type conversations.)

Various posts from me about daily life:
I'm a librarian. I geek stuff by nature. Most of what I write is various bits about daily life, books, music, thinking, doing stuff, chronic illness coping, and miscellaneous other topics. I tend not to write about politics and current events.

Lots of people who keep reading me say they really like my long thinky posts, even if they're otherwise not particularly interested in the subject matter: I am most likely to do them about
- sorting out the inside of my head.
- religious stuff (not basics, but how to learn, teach, share, and explore it better)
- music (with which I have a complex relationship)
- things that bug my librarian brain. Bad history and research. Online interactions, especially around privacy and communication.

Samples of public long-and-thinky that also give a good clue as to how I work include:
- An exposition on a mix CD I made for a particular trip which is really about bits of my musical history.
- General info about how I handle access and subscription on this journal.
- A post about the movie Agora, about Hypatia of Alexandria
- A deconstruction of the history in a Bones episode that involved a purported victim of the Salem Witch Trials.
- My somewhat dated advice to people considering library school
- People like when I go librarian smash at bad research. Tagged for your convenience.

And as an example of a non-public one, this one, about my father and the power of theatre and memory and the living power of words made real is one I'm still very proud of.

You will also see some crossposts )

The current and continuing obsession
I'm one of the players in a long-running (7 years planned!) alternate universe Harry Potter journal-based game/group narrative/whatever you want to call it called Alternity. It scratches all sorts of complicated thinky itches in my brain in ways I adore.

I am immensely proud of the writing and creation we've done there and are continuing to do, am continually amazed by the work of the other players, and I periodically geek about it. I am especially geeky about managing the backend data for it.

More about Alternity )

Other places I am online
Generally, if it's me doing personal stuff, I'm Jenett. Or JenettSilver, if Jenett was taken. I also write under that name for Pagan stuff.

I am on Facebook under my legal name, but avoid all directly Pagan (or otherwise personal stuff, like specific health details) stuff in public there (which also means I avoid stuff that adds Pagan fan pages or events to my profile.)

Commenting guidelines: Mostly common sense.
Please treat this space something like an open house: you are in my online living room, and if you want to have a conversation with me, in my space, there's stuff that makes that better for both of us.

And if you like that spelled out... )
jenett: text-only icon: Virgo Hufflepuff : details managed (details managed)
First, I would love to point out that the two *amazingly* excellent stories I received this year were both written by Fabrisse who *also* was my assigned author in 2013, and produced the equally amazing Foyle's War story I got then (Vignettes) She has a lot of other excellent and varied stuff, you should go read the parts that appeal to you.

All three have a particularly gorgeous understanding of the relevance of history, while being very much about the people living it rather than the big chewy events. I am by nature very much a social historian (when I'm being a historian with my spare brain), someone who is about how events - living through time - changes people, rather than focused on events or larger movements.

And all three of these stories give that in spades, along with an attention to fascinating and meaty details that I love (the discussion of Sam and food and how you get things done, the paragraph about how things fit together and irregularity is beauty, the look at how two men navigate that particular complexity.)

Right. Onto what I wrote. My actual assignment was Collection Development, a Libraries (Anthropomorfic) fic for a fellow librarian, who is forordwraith on DW (though she's in Canada, more on that in a moment or three.)

The treat I managed is for Betony who was my recipient last year, and whose prompts this year included "The Hogwarts- AU Trojan War fic I half-wish existed (bizarrely, I've always fan sorted the Trojans into Hufflepuff, shielding Helen in the spirit of their house and consequently getting on the wrong side a Gryffindor-Slytherin-Ravenclaw alliance.)"

Which promptly became the seeds of Seven Badgers of Troy

Wherein I talk more about both and the writing )
Collection Development )
Seven Badgers of Troy )
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
Recs for:

- Books: Anne of Green Gables, Cadfael Chronicles, Chalet School, Lammas Night, Chalion, The Giver, Lord Peter Wimsey, Malory Towers, The Odyssey, Newsflesh, The Princess Bride, Tam Lin.
- Movies: Addams Family, Agora, Galaxy Quest, Ghostbusters.
- Other: Arthurian Mythology, Greek Prose Composition, Lego, Libraries (Anthropomorfic).

I also liked an awful lot of the things in the Chalion, Miss Fisher's Murder Mystery, and Forever fandoms. (And Wimsey and Newsflesh remain reliably solid goodnesses in Yuletide.)

Recs within )
jenett: can't sleep, too much awesome (too much awesome)
I got two really really really amazing gifts. Two!

(Dear amazing authors, if you are reading this, I have had a really lousy fall, and this made many things feel like an improvement in complicated ways I do not have words for. So thank you very very much. These are very different stories in some ways, but they're both about what matters and how to keep doing it, even through the hard and complicated things, and I really really needed that.)

The Beauty of Philosophy is about Hypatia of Alexandria (as per the movie Agora and her earlier education, before that movie starts.) It is really really stunningly excellent, and has whole paragraphs where I went "YES THAT THING THERE." and a thorough understanding of the importance of the quadrivium and how they interact with each other, and what it means to live in a complex world.

I really particularly love Hypatia's interactions with her father, and with her teacher here, where they are fond but also expect a great deal. (This one is also entirely readable with a basic "Hypatia was a 4th century philosopher, astronomer, mathematician and a bunch of other things" knowledge.)

The Early Days is a prelude to Katherine Kurtz's Lammas Night and is the story I didn't know I wanted about how Gray and Prince William got to be like they are, got to have the layers and depths of trust they have by the time of the book. (And the author's note points out that the author went there because of some research, which is even better.)

So, those of you who read my letter and went "EEE, Lammas Night", go forth and enjoy!

I am now in the 'waiting to see how people liked the things I wrote' stage, and as usual, I will post writing comments after reveals.
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
[Edited for some clarity and further ideas October 25th]

So, apparently, the desires of my heart at the moment involve mentoring relationships or extreme competence. Or both. Right, then.

I am currently having a really hard fall. But one of the things I am thinking about a lot is how the people we learn from, learn how to do things with, change us. We hope, for the better. Sometimes that’s about formal education, but a lot of the time, it’s about something more complicated and faceted - and fascinating.

When I went through the Yuletide tag list for ‘things I want to remember are options this year’, it’s these three that jumped out at me. And one of the things that really strikes me is how they’re all about incredibly competent people sharing what they know in interesting ways. Or making choices based on what they know, are committed to, are passionate about.

So. Yeah. Basically, fic that does something with that is the thing I want. People being awesome at knowing their things, people caring about what they do, trusting other people to do it with them. That. :insert waving hands here:

You can feel free to take a look at my previous Yuletide letters and recs for things I’d like, but actually, while most of the details still apply to me, they don’t really apply to my requests this year.

If you got matched with me on any of these fandoms, I'm pretty sure that what you're inclined to write will be awesome.

But in case you’d like some more details, there's more below. Two of these three canons are quite easy to pick up quickly (one is a movie, one is a single volume book. The other one’s more complicated, alas.) I’ve included some general background for people reading because of one request who might also find the others interesting.

Read more... )
jenett: There are not enough capital letters in the English language to let me fully express my feelings on this. (not enough)
... my dear friend [personal profile] elisem reported harassment, and then she wrote up an essay about the process of reporting the harassment. (I have roundup of links from then starting over here)

Unfortunately, there's another essay required. Like the first, it's been posted on multiple blogs, with those people hosting (and moderating) comments. Natalie Luhrs has an excellent roundup of discussion around the 'Net about the events as well.

Elise's essay (same basic content all these places)
* John Scalzi's blog
* Stephanie Zvan's blog
* Natalie Luhr's blog
* Catherine Lundoff's blog at Dreamwidth and LiveJournal
* Mary Robinette Kowal's blog
* Sigrid Ellis's blog

I'm not sure I'm going to manage a thorough links roundup (yay, stuff in my own life) but I'm glad to stick a link to other people's roundups as they appear.
jenett: text-only icon: Virgo Hufflepuff : details managed (details managed)
So. I am in the midst of an epic blanket project. This post has links to specific bits of it, and also links to the two different posts of explanatory commentary (one about double knitting in general, and one about the blanket design process)

Updated Oct 31, 2014 with the squares to date.

The basic explanation
Because one epic project is not enough in my life, I am making a blanket to go along with Alternity. It has 7 squares (well, rectangles) per year, with 7 years, plus a border a square wide around it. (So a 9x9 blanket.)

I am doing it in double knitting so the squares are reversible (except where they aren't, as explained!) with a little additional embroidery/etc. in places.

I do plan to release the patterns for the things I've charted myself, but they'll take a bit of additional work. If there's one you're really interested in, let me know and I can send you the chart.

What is double knitting?
It is a method of knitting two sided fabric, which is generally reversable. Beyond that, it gets a bit more complicated.

I like double knitting because:
- You get a double weight fabric.
- It is in stockinette, but does not roll.
- You can do really nifty reversable designs.
- I actually find it easier to deal with than knitting purl and knit patterns?

My post about double knitting for them as wants geekery about that.

So what are the squares?
You can find the complete list on my Ravelry account (which is [ profile] jenett), but they are also linked below so you can see them in order.

(I have set up the individual projects so you can view them without being a Ravelry member, but I think to see the larger project tag, you need to have an account. If you knit, crochet, or do other fiber arts, I recommend it.)

My post about designing it for people who want that.

I note that the links and squares currently do include spoilers up through Year 3 of Alternity (in the sense of the squares indicating major plot events.) If you think you might want to read and want to avoid spoilers, you probably want to come back to this post after you've caught up at least that far.
Links within the cut )
jenett: text-only icon: Virgo Hufflepuff : details managed (details managed)
In which I discuss the actual design parts for those curious. If you don't want to do an epic blanket, some of the info in here will still be useful for rummaging for designs to use in other places.

Designing the project and other details )
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
Welcome back to the renewed Salon posts.

Topic of the day (As always, feel free to divert to other interesting questions!)
I just started working a different shift at work. (basically I am our evening library person until 11pm this semester: I have a 5.5 hour day, 3 9 hour days, and an 8 hour day.) It's making me think a lot about how we plan days, and fit things into them.

So. What's your day like? Are you a morning person? A night owl? Something in the middle? Naturally a night owl, but you have to get up for a morning job. (That's me, once upon a time! I am a natural night owl, but used to have to be at work at 7:30am at my previous job. Or sometimes 7.)

And within that day, what's your routine? I have never been a breakfast person (and combined with that, my thyroid meds mean I can't eat for 45 minutes after taking them, and eating and *then* going to work is - well, too complicated for a morning.) So I'm currently liking the new schedule, where I get up, take my meds, and then do something for lunch as my first meal. (And also heat soup and put things together to bring to work for dinner, and then have something when I get home.) It seems to be working out so far.

And what's your evening routine? How do you wind down at the end? What things do you enjoy? (Mine often involves the computer and some knitting.)

Current things
As I mentioned in a locked post, I am currently finishing reading all the Phryne Fisher mysteries so I can watch the TV series (Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries and in the meantime am watching Warehouse 13. I have not had a lot of brain for complicated reading, which is not so good (because I have a lot on my TBR pile)

To go with the watching, I have been knitting the Celestarium shawl, designed by Audry Nicklin, which maps the stars of the northern hemisphere onto a circular shawl. It's involved a bunch of new skills (and I didn't do anything with it for most of November and December) but I'm trying to get it done for something in mid-March. She has one for the southern hemisphere stars, too, and I'm doing four colours of beads for the star magnitudes, which is a little fiddly but very interesting.

A few notes
* FAQ over this way
* Place to leave possible topics (and screened comments in general) over here.
* If you don't have a DW account or want to post anonymously, please include a name we can call you in this particular post. (You can say AnonymousOne or your favourite colour or whatever. Just something to help keep conversations clear.)
* If you've got a question or concern, feel free to PM me or leave a comment on the screened topic post (second point just above.)
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
Here is the post where you can suggest topics for future salons.

I don't promise to use them (because they need to be a topic I'm interested in talking about, and also a topic I've got the energy to encourage on a given week, and that last one, in particular, varies a lot week to week) but I do find it helpful to have an idea what people want to talk about maybe.

Comments screened, so feel free to comment whatever you'd like.

This is also a place where you can drop me a note if there's something in a current salon post you've got a question about, or you wish someone who wasn't you would nudge the conversation a certain direction, or whatever else.
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
I've had a lot of people make "I really enjoyed those" noises at me, and I want to resume! However, my work schedule has changed for the semester, and I'm still settling into the new one.

So, here! Tell me things you like about how they were going! Tell me if there are days that work better for you!

Things I'm committed to:
1) It's going to be a weekday: my weekends vary too much.

2) The initial post will go up when I wake up and wander to the computer, which on my new work schedule is probably somewhere between 9:30am and 10:30am Eastern US Time.

3) There will be some combo of "here, have some awesome thing" (links, book quotes, whatever) and a general question. I am open to suggestions for future questions, but they need to be things I want to talk about/feel I can encourage conversation about, so feel free to suggest but be aware that I may go "Yeah, not for me" or "Yeah, but not right now."

4) It'll continue to be hosted here (rather than say, making it be a community where other people could help host) because I think part of what's making it work is my feeling stewardship of the space and a bunch of amporphous 'what's the right question for this week'. (Brains are weird.)

5) There may be occasional weeks off, though I will generally know in advance. (In particular, I have travel in mid-February and in mid-March that may complicate things.) There may also be weeks in which I forget, in which case, please do remind me I meant to do a salon post (but I've rearranged some of my to-do list stuff that will make it easier for me to remember it's a specific day.)
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
I wrote Anagnorisis for a wonderful prompt that basically asked for more Penelope and Odysseus.

I've been known to say that I've been an Odysseus fangirl since pretty much I knew there was an Odysseus (which in my case was somewhere before the age of 5), and my parents nearly named me Penelope (until my older siblings pointed out the number of times this would get mispronounced, badly). And I grew up on Greek mythology, including my father retelling Homer through long dogwalks. (Since I just linked this more publically than my usual reading lists, I should note: my father was a specialist in ancient Greek theatre. I come by my geekiness naturally.)

First fandoms, anyway.

So, on the whole, this was fascinating to write, and it was wonderful to do it with a prompt that left me a number of directions I could go. I spent a lot of time chewing on it, wanting to figure out how to get the emotional weight right, and thinking a lot about the question "How *do* you pick up again after a lot of change?" and the question that Alternity [1] always leaves me with, which is "How do decent people deal with horrible circumstances?"

The two combined into a conversation, three months after the reunion, in which Penelope raises certain points to be considered.

I was hoping for a while it was going to grow another half where they went and sorted out some sort of problem together. But the more I poked at it, the more I couldn't get that to gel right, and the more I liked the sparseness and depth and complexity of it just being the conversation. I did a lot of poking at the last couple of paragraphs in particular: the end result is thanks to conversation with the ever-wonderful [ profile] elisem, where I went "OH! THAT THING." and came back with the end result.

Thank you, Betony, for an awesome prompt (and also for the recs to other fic: for everyone else who likes the Odyssey, she linked to some other stories she really liked, and I loved reading them.)

[1] See my bio post for a bit more context, or the game website.
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
Recs for Foyle's War, The Middleman, American Gods, Seanan McGuire's song "Follow Me Down", the blog post “Ten Stupidest Things I’ve Heard Since Richard III’s Remains Were Identified”, The Addams Family, Anne of Green Gables, Ballet Shoes, Anthropomorfic library catalogs, GalaxyQuest (and fannish tendencies in general), Cold Comfort Farm, Little Brother, Tam Lin (the song), Disney Princesses at college, Young Wizards, No Reservations (taking on Narnian food), and the Newsflesh trilogy.

Recs within )
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
(Look! I remembered it was Wednesday! Which is more than I did last week. You can always feel free to remind me if I haven't posted by about 10am ET.) As always, come in, hang out, talk about stuff, invite friends, and so on and so forth.

Topic of the day: I've been poking at ebook services a bit, and it got me thinking about how I read and what I read a bit more. So, today's question: what and how?

I have somehow shifted into doing a vast amount of my reading digitally - I always have my phone with me, my phone has many many books on it, and I read that at work (when I'm doing things like waiting for a computer to boot or update things when I'm working on it) and also in bed at night, or if I'm waiting somewhere. I love that I don't have to carry a book with me, or carry a spare book in case I finish the one I'm on.

I still read in print, but mostly in the bathtub (when I don't want to use electronics) and occasionally for specific kinds of reading (anything I'm actively studying is possibly in print, or anything that has complicated diagrams, because I still find those frustrating on ereaders.)

What I read is about as varied as it always has been - about half my reading is non-fiction (mostly popular-but-well-done non-fiction), with a mix of genres. Part of this is for professional reasons: while I'm not doing reader's advisory work in my current job, it's quite possible future jobs will involve it, so I still read somewhat outside my own natural preferences to keep up with things.

But beyond that? Some fanfic, often of the very lengthy variety. A number of blogs, via RSS reader (which between them add up to a lot of text). Dreamwidth and LiveJournal (ditto on the adding up to a lot of text). A couple of online forums.

And I'm also working on figuring out reading for a future trip, where I'm having trouble figuring out how to keep track of what I've read and might want to come back to in a useful way. (I'm thinking the answer here is LibraryThing, but I haven't quite sorted out workflow enough.)

So. What do you read? How do you read it? How do you manage your reading?
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
(Look! I remembered it's Wednesday before noon!)

As always, come in, chat about whatever, invite people along. As y'all do

Today's topic: points of pride. I posted (locked, because it has some identifying details) about being on a committee at work to recognise staff, and some of the things we're doing, but it got me thinking about how I (and other people) recognise other people being awesome, or *me* being awesome.

(This is a both/and sort of question.)

So. Do you talk about your awesome? Do you have a hard time talking about your awesome? What things do you try to tell other people about their awesome?

I'm thinking of [personal profile] synecdochic's pride posts on Mondays, and I'm thinking about discussions about commenting on Yuletide (and other fanfic, but particularly ones that are part of a larger event so there's an element of time in there), and about the notes I get to write to staff telling them why other people think they're awesome (which is a pretty cool thing to get to do at work) and about conversations with student workers about gaming geekery, because it's a shared awesome.

Go forth. Discuss. Go whatever direction.
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
Yuletide within )

(If you are reading and are not familiar with Yuletide, there is a comment on this post explaining more.)
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
So, I don't know about all of you, but my day started by spilling one of my medication bottles, was followed up by getting a notification for a payment I hadn't made in PayPal, and once I got to work, discovered I was missing a meeting scheduled while I was on vacation. (Plus the range of weird computer failures I mostly expected.)

(I have enough meds to keep me going, though I'm going to have to get them to call in a refill earlier than usual, I have reported it to PayPal and changed all the passwords ever, and the meeting can be coped with. Just, well.)

My questions for you today:

1) How do you deal with days like that, when a bunch of stuff not under your control piles up? (What makes you feel better, what makes you feel more sorted?)

2) Favourite words, and why. (This one brought to you by the friend who sent me the word 'astriferous' this weekend, which means 'bearing stars'. I am also deeply fond of 'tintinabulum'. And 'fortnight'.)

I like the first one because it's descriptive and gorgeous. The second because of the sound of it (it means 'the sound of bells') and fortnight is just an exceedingly practical word.

As always, come, chat, invite friends, change the topic to other things you're interested in, etc.
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
Welcome to this week's salon. As per usual, please invite people along, talk about whatever other topics you like, and so on and so forth.

Today's topic: I mentioned that I had just finished watching all of West Wing and how I found it actually aged surprisingly well (and how I think part of that has to do with the fact they all have and use cell phones.)

This got me thinking about narrative shapes, and how some things kick me out of story, and some things don't, and how that works for me.

So. What kinds of stories or narratives are you drawn to? Why? Do you have moments where you get shaken out of them? What shakes you? (And do you still enjoy stuff that does, or not?)

For me, I have huge narrative buttons labelled 'coming of age stories involving schools', 'competent people being competent, and competent and well-intending is even better', and several others. Stuff that kicks me out of a narrative includes people being stupid in ways that haven't been set up well, stupidities about technology, worldbuilding stupidities that lead to massive inconsistencies.

Today's food: I have mushroom soup in progress at home (caramelised onions overnight, put mushrooms and stock in this morning, will have soup tonight, yay.)
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
Welcome to this week's salon post! As always, invite your friends along, feel free to chat about anything that you feel like, and so on.

Today's starting topic: Sunday is my birthday, and I'm curious what matters to y'all in celebrations of that kind.

My own habit is to do something involving good food (I plan to roast a chicken this weekend), good music (I am going to a concert tonight, eee!) and I am currently suffering under the "I want a clean apartment for my birthday!" colliding hard with the physical realities of the world, and the fact that, y'know, work takes a chunk of time out of my day. (I managed very little cleaning over last weekend, and cleaning after work is - yeah. Stupid bodies are stupid.)

And I generally apply the same thing I do on New Year's Day, which is to do a bunch of things I hope will be in my coming year, in at least symbolic amounts. Which means there should be some music in there and some knitting and some writing and some reading, and a decadent bath.

Current listening: Avalon Rising's version of "Hexamshire Lass" (I woke up with the tune stuck in my head, and that version is the closest version to the one I have stuck in my head, which I do not seem to have handy at work. Either that, or my brain's making up arrangements of things again, which is not actually that uncommon.)
jenett: the milky way emerging from silhouetted hills (Default)
It's Wednesday. There should be a salon post. However, I feel utterly lousy, and I am quite sure I am not particularly coherent. (Fall allergies which lead to cranky lungs + a long day at work yesterday + residual ugh. Nothing dire, but that does not make me happy today.)

Today's question: What do you wish someone had told you ten years ago? (Or five, or twenty: feel free to adjust for your particular circumstances.) And why?

(This question brought to you by a post I did on my religious blog last week)

Reminder: as always, talk amongst yourselves, feel free to digress onto other topics, and have excellent conversation.
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