ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Thanks to a donation from Anthony & Shirley Barrette, "The Injury That Provokes It" is now complete.  Find out some of the natural consequences  that come from Andy being a dick.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem came out of the July 21, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] natasiakith, [personal profile] zeeth_kyrah, and Shirley Barrette. It also fills the "make new friends" square of my 5-20-15 card for the Wellness Toolbox Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the Polychrome Heroics series, and is a sequel to "Coloring In."

Warning: This poem contains some touchy material. Highlight to read the detailed warnings, some of which are spoilers. It mentions uncontrolled use of a superpower, physical stress deriving from superpower overstrain, having to depend on a total stranger for help, nonsexual intimacy during a minor crisis, aftereffects of past head trauma, graphic description of disability coping skills, a close look at how superpowers can screw up your life, teen angst, and other sensitive material. But mostly it's a very positive look at Ansel being awesome again. If these are concerns for you, please consider your headspace before reading onward.

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ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is from the July 21, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from Shirley Barrette. It also fills the "primary colors" square in my 6-10-15 card for the [community profile] genprompt_bingo fest, and it fills the "Asked to give public safety lecture -- right after incident" square in my Superhero Bingo Card. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the series Polychrome Heroics.

WARNING: This poem touches on some sensitive topics. Highlight to read the detailed warnings, some of which are spoilers. It features bullying, vile language, discrimination against assorted groups, willing and unwilling changes in hair color, nonsexual intimacies, navigation through shifting identity, boundary issues, violation of body autonomy, canon-typical violence, emotional stress, and other challenges. On the whole, though, there's more fluff than angst, and it ends on a high note. If this is touchy territory for you, consider your headspace before clicking through.

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ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is spillover from the July 21, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from LJ user Ng_moonmoth, [personal profile] ellenmillion, and [community profile] origfic_bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by Ng_moonmoth. It belongs to the series Polychrome Heroics.

Warning: This poem contains canon-typical violence, hostile language, boundary violations, and other minor mayhem. No supervillains or would-be heroes were seriously injured in the making of this poem.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 ... as unearthed by Nalo Hopkinson.  She's one of those writers who likes to do serious research for her F&SF novels.

I would like to add: the perception of stupidity, laziness, and clumsiness is not an accident or a random stereotype.  It is a misinterpretation  of the tactics for survival and resistance by slaves against their owners.  If the master thinks you're rebelling, you'll be punished or killed.  But if you can make them think you're unable  to do better, they're surprisingly easy to fool and will let you alone.  So slaves quite frequently wasted resources, broke or lost tools, dragged their feet, let the livestock out, stole food, and generally did everything they could, as discreetly as possible, to make the masters' lives less pleasant.  

Those strategies linger in poor communities today.  Why bust your ass when all the benefit of your labor gets creamed off for the benefit of people who hate you?  You'll never be permitted to earn more than subsistence wages, so you might as well do that with as little effort as you can possibly get away with.  Where there is no reward for harder work, you get passive resistance.

So when you read my writing about the slave descended cultures of the Americas and Caribbean, you can see many of the same roots.  It's often there in the language, the personal and community dynamics, the food, and especially the ways people deal with problems.  Each place is unique, with its own local culture -- Jamaica is different from Cuba and from New Orleans.  They're related through the common experiences of colonialism and slavery, yet distinct in local resources and historic events.  The diversity is beautiful.  As that plays out in my storytelling, you can see how people from different cultures might handle things like superpowers (Haiti is one of the bottom-ten countries for soups) or getting kidnapped by alien slavers (in which various black folks used their family lore to devise survival strategies).
ysabetwordsmith: (monster house)
This poem is spillover from the July 21, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] kelkyag. It also fills the "Jack Frost" square in my 7-1-15 card for the Winter Fest in July. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles. It belongs to the series Monster House.

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ysabetwordsmith: Sheba with parrot wings (fledgling grace)
This poem is spillover from the July 21, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired and sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles. It also fills the "silver and gold" square in my 7-1-15 card for the Winter Fest in July. This poem belongs to the series Fledgling Grace, and it's a direct sequel to "Shades of Morality."

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
When you write them like this

I am pleased to see mention of the points that make these characters good, which are things I often aim for:
* giving them a full heroic backstory, not just implying that they have abilities because of their race
* grounding them in a specific tribe or tribes, including multiracial characters
* showing how they adapt to and/or struggle with modern life and their tribal heritage
* providing tough plot challenges that require maximum effort to surmount, and are about something other than just being Indian.

Silkpunk

Jul. 21st, 2015 11:20 am
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
So there's a genre called silkpunk, inspired by historic Asian technology.  Fascinating.

I've written a handful of explicitly Asian series: The Origami Mage relies primarily on paper magic.  Kung Fu Robots is more like wuxia SF.  Lacquerware is Edopunk.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
In this interview, Alan Moore says:

"To my mind, this embracing of what were unambiguously children's characters at their mid-20th century inception seems to indicate a retreat from the admittedly overwhelming complexities of modern existence," he wrote to Ó Méalóid.

It's not untrue ... but it is incomplete to the point of misleading.  Sure, mainstream comics today have a lot of isms that should be wasms, and sometimes they churn morality to gray goo.  Comics haven't always been for children alone, though, and many of them are written for adults today.  Furthermore, diversity is exploding if you look at indie comics instead of just the overlord corporations.  We have women, queerfolk, people of color, all different religions, etc. all making superheroes and supervillains and all kinds of other characters to reflect their many facets of experience.

There is nothing simplistic about that.  I mean sheesh, someone just prompted me for a story about one or more transfolk that didn't mention the trans aspect as part of the story.  I didn't even need to make new characters, I already had some in the can.  I had two transpeople who already knew each other  and were engaged in activities that easily produced a plot having nothing to do with their transness.

It's not about the medium.  It's about what you make of it.  I'll just be over here looking for "mad, wonderful ideas" that I can shove through the cosmic crack into this world.
ysabetwordsmith: (Karavai)
This is the freebie for the July 2015 Muse Fusion, inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] ellenmillion. It also fills the "Wild Card: Dinosaurs and Prehistoric Creatures" square in my 3-16-15 card for the [community profile] genprompt_bingo fest. It belongs to the Torn World project.

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ysabetwordsmith: (Karavai)
The Torn World Muse Fusion for July 2015 is now open!  Come give us prompts, or claim some for your own inspiration.  You don't have to be a member to play, although it does make things easier.  New to Torn World?  Start Here for readers or for creators


What I Have Written

"To Ride Death" is today's freebie.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is from the July 7, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] wyld_dandelyon. It also fills the "positive affirmations" square in my 5-20-15 card for the Wellness Toolbox Bingo fest, and the "crank call to SPOON by angry ex" square in my Superhero Bingo. This poem has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the series Polychrome Heroics.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
... is this right here.  Not the powers, but being adopted by loving parents who raise him well.  <3  

But there's one more thing people don't understand about Superman, because most humans think like humans.  They don't understand what it's like to be invulnerable when everyone around you ISN'T.  So that's how you hurt someone who can't be injured.  You go after the ones around them.  Which is exactly what supervillains do best, and the core of some of Superman's best stories in history.

"Die Faltenlilien"  is one of my takes on this kind of dilemma. 
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 [personal profile] lb_lee has written "How to Wake Up" based on my prompt; this is an older story newly sponsored.  :D  Even superheroes have nightmares...
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This poem is spillover from the February 3, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] chordatesrock. It also fills the "telepathy / mindmeld" square in my 1-3-15 card for the [community profile] trope_bingo fest. Based on an audience poll, this is the free epic for the July 7, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl reaching its $200 goal. It belongs to the series Seeing Hearts, which you can find via the Serial Poetry page.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This looks like fun.  I'm definitely interested in watching it.

I just wish other people would mix up their ethnic characters a bit more.  There's a really heavy trend toward linking superpowers with ethnicity.  Sure, do that, roots matter.  But do some other stuff too.  African-descended characters often have primal powers such as animal traits.  I have Lakia, who has a tail and Neural Blast.  I even have a soup who actually IS an African elephant, Hercules.  But I've also got Boss White (Telepathy), Danso (Superpower Manipulation), Dazzlecat (Shapeshifting: Ocelot Form), Jolt (Control Electricity), Fiddlesticks (Super-Speed), Gallium Gal (Liquid Metal Form), the Gingerbread Man (Teleportation), Lieutenant Brown (Regeneration), the Muffler (Power Nullification & Empathy), and Saraphina Dreux (Soul Powers).
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem came out of the July 7, 2015 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] rix_scaedu and Anthony Barrette. It also fills the "worrying" square in my 5-8-15 card for the [community profile] origfic_bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles. It belongs to the Dr. Infanta thread of the Polychrome Heroics series.

Warning: This poem touches on some sensitive topics. Highlight to read the detailed warnings, some of which are spoilers. Dr. Bukowski's research into longevity reveals the path to human immortality. Afraid that his supervisors would abuse the information, he tracks down Dr. Infanta, expecting that she will quite likely kill him. So that's either a consideration of suicide or murder, depending on interpretation. It doesn't happen, but his head is not in a great place because he has anxiety issues. There are also oblique references to human experimentation and other touchy things. The solution to the problem involves consensual removal of selected memories for transferral to someone else, which is a bit risky, but a lot better than the alternatives. Please consider your taste and headspace before clicking through.

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ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
"Coming in from the Cold" is the next big piece in its series, dealing with Bucky and his continued issues with that piece-of-crap prosthesis. I'm posting each day within the story as a section unto itself, broken down into post-sized parts.

This story belongs to the series Love Is For Children which includes "Love Is for Children," "Hairpins," "Blended," "Am I Not," "Eggshells," "Dolls and Guys,""Saudades," "Querencia," "Turnabout Is Fair Play," "Touching Moments," "Splash," "Coming Around," "Birthday Girl," "No Winter Lasts Forever," "Hide and Seek," "Kernel Error," "Happy Hour," "Green Eggs and Hulk,""kintsukuroi," "Little and Broken, but Still Good," "Up the Water Spout," "The Life of the Dead," "If They Could Just Stay Little," "Anahata," "Coming in from the Cold: Saturday: Building Towers," and "Coming in from the Cold: Sunday: Shaking Foundations."

Fandom: The Avengers
Characters: Phil Coulson, Bruce Banner, Betty Ross, Bucky Barnes, Steve Rogers, Natasha Romanova, Tony Stark, Clint Barton, Happy Hogan, Peggy Carter, Sam Wilson, DUM-E, U, Butterfingers.
Medium: Fiction
Warnings: Mention of past trauma with lingering symptoms of PTSD. Kitchen fail. Tony being a brat. Description of past deaths and self-destructive behavior. Current environment is supportive.
Summary: The Avengers celebrate Memorial Day by going to Washington, D.C. for the festivities. Emotional roller-coasters ensue.
Notes: Hurt/comfort. Family. Fluff and angst. Emotional overload. Coping skills. Healthy touch. Asking for help and getting it. Cooking. Comfort food. Holidays. Medals. Veteran issues. Nonsexual intimacy. Caregiving. Competence. Gentleness. Trust. Emotional confusion. Hope. Crowds. Memorials. Mourning. Letting go. Moving on. Photography. Parades. Storytelling. War stories. Nostalgia. Hand-feeding. Heroism. Public speaking. Flashbacks. Friendship. Counseling. Leaving early. Bots. Tony and his bots. Tony Stark loves his bots. The bots are Tony's kids. Bot feels. Bots being cute. Protective bots. Boundary issues. Territoriality. Making friends. Bucky's arm. Tony Stark & Bucky's arm. Watching television. Cuddling. Hand cramps. Massage. #coulsonlives

Begin with Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8.

Here ends "Coming in from the Cold: Monday: Memorial Day." Thank you all for sticking with the series this far! I love your input. Final thoughts on the story overall are welcome, in addition to reactions on this specific chapter. The Tuesday segment has been drafted, but this is Poetry Fishbowl week so expect it to be awhile before posting resumes. I gotta put the beans on the table.

I also have a list of favorite photogenic scenes from the whole series for fanartists to consider, partly compiled from audience requests. See the new fanart of Bruce and Natka under the coffee table!

A note on feedback: While it's not necessary to comment on every post I make, remember that I don't know who reads/likes things if nobody says anything. Particularly on long stories, I've discovered that I get antsy if there's nothing but crickets chirping for several posts. So it helps to give me feedback at least once, even if it's just "I like this" or "This one doesn't grab me." First and last episodes are ideal if you rarely feel inspired to comment in the middle.

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