rionaleonhart: okami: amaterasu is startled. (NOT SO FAST)
I recently had a conversation with my housemate about how extremely screwed up the Animorphs books were, containing the line, 'Yeah, that's not the first genocide in the Animorphs books.' It reminded me that I once wrote an Animorphs-inspired short story for school, and my English teacher called my parents because she was worried about my psychological health. (Look, we were prompted to write about nightmares! Were you expecting something nice?)

Seriously, though. There's one book where a kid's parents have been enslaved by mind-controlling aliens, so he goes, 'Well, I'll just murder this terminally injured kid and morph into him and go "look, I've made a miraculous recovery!" and then I'll have his parents,' and our heroes end up trapping him permanently in the body of a rat on an isolated island, which gets a reputation for being haunted because passing sailors can hear the rat-kid's psychic screams. One of our heroes, in rat form, is forced to chew through her own tail so their horrible plan will work. I was maybe ten years old when I read this.

Wait, are the Animorphs books the origin of my fondness for the Teenagers Suffering Horribly genre? They're definitely the origin of my writing style; the influence is really, really obvious when I reread my early Pokémon fanfiction. I've kept the 'very straightforward prose, lots of dialogue' aspects to this day. (And, on a content note, I'm still writing about teenagers suffering horribly.)

The theme of the inevitable Linkin Park segment in this entry is 'songs Linkin Park inexplicably never released on an album and don't have on their official YouTube channel EVEN THOUGH THEY'RE GREAT', because I went on a desperate hunt after hearing 'No Roads Left'. I've never heard Mike sing like this before! He usually raps or sings more gently; I had no idea he could manage something this desperate. And 'Across the Line' (warning for suicidal themes) is easily polished enough to be an album song; the buildup of the instruments is great. (The cats just had a DRAMATIC BATTLE while I was listening to it, and it made for the most incredible background music.)

Moving to some softer songs, 'She Couldn't' (again, suicidal themes) is also very good, although at least I can see why this one never ended up on an album: it was recorded in the Hybrid Theory era and wouldn't have fit with the harder sound of their other songs at the time, and the sampling might have created legal issues. And I love the instrumentation and singing on Blackbirds, although the lyrics hurt.

(Hard to think of any song from this band where the lyrics don't hurt. I'm doing a little better now (writing that horrible Until Dawn timeloop fic was incredibly cathartic and helped me claw myself out of a bad psychological dip), but it's been a really tough month. Chester's death in many ways feels like the death of my childhood, and it also got tangled up in my head with the death of a friend of mine under similar circumstances years ago, so I've been grieving on a weird number of levels.

WAIT, CURSES, I GOT SAD IN AN ENTRY AGAIN AND THE RULES SAY I HAVE TO POST SOMETHING CUTE TO MAKE UP FOR IT. Here are Chester and Joe putting on a stupid puppet show with puppets of the band members. I love the 'making fun of friends you know really well' feel of it. I also enjoyed Chester bouncing around ridiculously to a silly version of 'One Step Closer'.)
rionaleonhart: final fantasy versus xiii: a young woman at night, her back to you, the moon high above. (nor women neither)
Red Dwarf, the finest sci-fi show ever made, is currently available on Netflix, and so I've been rewatching it! The humour's actually aged better than I thought it would; the audience laughter feels very dated, but the characters are still fun and Arnold Rimmer in particular is a magnificent comic creation. Not many of the jokes actually take me by surprise, as I watched my Red Dwarf DVDs several thousand times in my early teens, but I'm still enjoying myself.

(A perplexing discovery: I was recently poking around my bedroom at my parents' house and unearthed a transcription of a Red Dwarf episode I'd apparently done by hand. I have no recollection of this, but I must have done it directly from the DVD. Probably through constant pausing and rewinding to check what the characters said; I have a feeling it didn't occur to me to put the subtitles on. Why on Earth did I feel the need to write out an entire Red Dwarf episode? Was I planning to put it on as a play? With exactly one handwritten copy of the script?)

The writers of Red Dwarf don't entirely seem to know what to do with the Cat. At some point I began picturing him as a normal non-humanoid cat hanging around on the set, and suddenly he made a lot more sense to me; of course he just shows up occasionally to do cat things and then vanishes for long periods.

Rimmer/Lister was one of my earliest 'ships. I suppose it laid the foundations in my heart for Mark Corrigan/Jeremy Usborne of Peep Show: two men, one uptight and neurotic, the other slobbish and laid-back. They live together and they really don't get along most of the time, but ultimately they're closer to each other than they are to anyone else. The difference is that Lister (the slob) is presented as the relatable one in Red Dwarf, whereas I feel you're more expected to identify with Mark in Peep Show, and Lister is fundamentally a decent bloke, whereas everyone in Peep Show is fundamentally terrible.

A few weeks ago, I discovered a men's magazine from 1939 in an antique shop. Flicking through it, I came across a page of tiny print advertisements. Many of them were claiming 'YOU CAN GROW TWO TO FIVE INCHES TALLER IN JUST TEN DAYS', presumably using growth technology that's been lost to humanity since the 1930s.

My favourite of the advertisements:

This wonderful invention not only makes the trousers hang straight, but does so in such an ingenious way with immediate results that your own friends forget, and others never know, that you are bow-legged.
rionaleonhart: final fantasy x-2: the sun is rising, yuna looks to the future. (hope is all we have)
As he pushed past Harry into the darkening corridor, Zabini shot him a filthy look that Harry returned with interest.

When I first read Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, it didn't occur to me that 'with interest' was a metaphor meaning 'with extra filth'. I thought Harry just returned it... interestedly. Going 'hmm, Zabini's giving me a charged look. Intriguing. Where's this going?'

I puzzled over this for some time. It seemed to me unlikely that Rowling had introduced Blaise Zabini as a romantic interest for Harry, but I couldn't work out what else she could be getting at.

The Sectumsempra scene hit me so hard when I first read this book. Come to think of it, Dumbledore drinking the potion in the cave did as well. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is far from the best book in the series, but it does have some really impactful moments.

(The difference between these two scenes: Sectumsempra is horrifying and yet is also possibly my favourite scene in the entire Harry Potter series. Dumbledore drinking the potion is horrifying in a way that makes me squirm and want to look away, rather than in a way that makes me go 'OH NO THIS IS AWFUL but also the best thing ever'.)

Half-Blood Prince is also the book in which Harry finds out that Snape reported the 'Chosen One' prophecy to Voldemort, resulting in the deaths of Lily and James. Dumbledore tells Harry that Snape didn't anticipate the consequences: 'You have no idea of the remorse Professor Snape felt when he realised how Lord Voldemort had interpreted the prophecy, Harry. I believe it to be the greatest regret of his life and the reason that he returned [to our side].'

This is the first time I've reread this book since Deathly Hallows, and this moment really struck me this time around. Snape is such a tragic figure. A deeply unpleasant figure, yes, but a tragic one.

YOU THOUGHT THIS WASN'T GOING TO BE AN ASSASSIN'S CREED ENTRY, BUT NO. I've written a bit more of Visitors (Gratuitous Wish-Fulfilment Edition)! I've edited it into the original post, though, rather than putting it up in a fresh one, because it's silly that I keep flooding your flists with this AU. I'm sorry! It's just a ridiculously fun universe to play around in, particularly now that I've thrown aside my shame and started writing all the platonic bedsharing scenes of my dreams. (ALL OF THESE CHARACTERS HAVE MURDERED HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE.)
rionaleonhart: final fantasy viii: found a draw point! no one can draw... (you're a terrible artist)
This is just a load of nostalgic rambling about the Final Fantasy series; don't mind me.

I was just absently thinking about Final Fantasy VIII, and I remembered how incredibly freaked out I was by the first Laguna dream. I honestly feared something had gone wrong with the game somehow. I refused to save when I was playing as Laguna, because I really liked Squall and I was afraid that I might never go back to being him. (Later, I fell completely in love with Laguna, but at the time I was most distressed.)

Final Fantasy VIII was my first Final Fantasy game. I was thirteen. I went into a GAME, picked up a box in the 'Preowned' section, looked at the title, thought 'hmmm, I vaguely recall hearing good things about this series in a magazine somewhere' and bought it. I knew literally nothing about Final Fantasy. I didn't even know what genre it was. Even had I known, it probably wouldn't have meant anything to me; I don't think I knew what 'RPG' meant at the time, although I had played Pokémon Red.

The curious thing is this: the box I picked up wasn't a Final Fantasy VIII box. It was a Final Fantasy VII box. It didn't even have enough holders for Final Fantasy VIII's four discs. But the man behind the counter must have put a copy of Final Fantasy VIII in by mistake.

I didn't realise what had happened until disc two, when I went on the Internet to find out why I'd died when D-District Prison had drilled into the ground (IT WAS A CUTSCENE, I DIDN'T KNOW I COULD MOVE). 'Why do all these sites keep saying they're about Final Fantasy VIII? Squall is in Final Fantasy VII!' I still remember the 'hang on, maybe...' realisation and going to check the number on the actual discs. IT'S BEEN VIII ALL ALONG, MY WORLD HAS BEEN TURNED UPSIDE-DOWN.

My world was also rather turned upside-down when I realised that pressing R1 to enhance damage on attacking only worked with Squall and Seifer, as it represented firing the gunblade. For years I had been pressing R1 whenever anyone attacked, assuming I just hadn't worked out the timing for anyone but Squall. The problem was that of course occasionally someone would get a critical hit, and so I'd assumed on those occasions that I'd managed to press R1 at the correct moment for once. I simply could not work out why I was so bad at timing my R1 presses for non-Squall characters. I laboured under this misconception for at least seven years.

I sometimes wonder how things would have turned out had I actually received the correct game. This was very early in my videogame-playing career, and Final Fantasy VII is quite far down my personal ranking of the games in the series (it's beaten by VI, VIII, IX, X, XII and XIII, in fact; my enjoyment of VII was seriously hampered by its poor translation). Would I have become a Final Fantasy fan had I started with VII? Would I have become a gamer at all?

Perhaps I would have fallen in love with VII had I played it first. I suppose I'll never know. I do think that VIII was the perfect Final Fantasy game to hook me, though, because I identified so strongly with Squall. Even though I had absolutely no idea how to play (I was capable of junctioning GFs, at least, but I had no idea what junctioning magic did and ended up using GFs over and over again to get through every fight), I persisted, because I really cared about the characters.

I rather hope Final Fantasy VII is remade at some point with a better translation; I'd be interested to see what I think of it without that barrier. I don't want VIII to be remade because I'm too invested in the characters already and the voices will probably be wrong, and I don't want IX to be remade because IX is frankly perfect as it is, but I really would like a VII remake, because I think it has so much room for improvement.

Wow, I have absolutely no idea what the point of this entry is. In any case, what was your first Final Fantasy game? Non-Final Fantasy stories of videogame nostalgia are also welcome. (Also - and this isn't related to the entry at all - would you recommend Mass Effect 2? I've been vaguely wondering whether I should pick it up at some point.)
rionaleonhart: kingdom hearts: sora, riku and kairi having a friendly chat. (and they returned home)
[ profile] reipan gave me some Animorphs books for Christmas, and so I recently reread The Invasion, the first book in the series.

I had forgotten that the Animorphs books are the most depressing children's books ever written. In my memory, the Animorphs at least managed to blow up the Yeerk pool in the first book, even if Tobias was a casualty. Upon rereading, I found that they went in severely underprepared. They did not manage to blow up the Yeerk pool. They managed to rescue one person. One person. They released others from the cages, but all of them were recaptured or killed. The Animorphs' first major mission, and more people ended up dead than rescued. And, on top of all that, Jake ate a live spider. SO DEPRESSING.

(Nothing on the end of the series, though, which I never actually reached but read up on when I was researching for my Glee/Animorphs crossover. Oh, Jake.)

These books were a really big part of my childhood. I used to go to the library and check out as many as I possibly could at once. My first real involvement in fandom was on the messageboard for a fanfiction series called Pokémorphs, in which a Mew gave a bunch of teenagers the power to morph into Pokémon using the 'Ditto Device'. They had to fight the Weederpies: Weedle-Caterpie hybrids genetically engineered by Team Rocket. It was amazing. The world definitely needs more Animorphs crossovers.

Whilst I'm being nostalgic: I've rediscovered my first real effort at fanfiction (EDIT: Just realised that this is at least the third thing to which I have referred as 'my first attempt at fanfiction' in this journal. Look, it was at least ten years ago and I have a terrible memory for the order in which things happen), which was never finished (barely started, in fact). It was called Mew's Pokémon Journey, and it was about a Mew who wanted to be a Pokémon master. I think I'd have been eleven or twelve. Here are some scans of the (now rather yellowed) pages: one, two, three. It looks like there was more writing afterwards, but sadly I think that's been lost.

I've also written it up under the cut, just in case those scans go down in the future and I lose the original (I am a hoarder and like to keep things backed up all over the place). Spelling and punctuational errors are preserved. (I was quite a competent speller, I see, but I clearly had no idea how to punctuate dialogue.)

Mew's Pokémon Journey: an eleven-year-old's first attempt at fanfiction (probably). )

Alas, we shall never know exactly how Mew was to fare on his Pokémon journey.

To return to the original subject of Animorphs, here is a quote from the construction-site scene in The Invasion:

But then the Andalite's voice was in my head again. {Courage, my friends.}**

And then he psychically transmits courage to the Animorphs.

BLAINE ANDERSON IS AN ANDALITE. My goodness, I clearly missed an opportunity in my Glee/Animorphs crossover.

* this is equivalent to a dog saying 'My name is Dog.'
** here, as in the Mew's Pokémon Journey writeup, I am using squiggly brackets (that's almost certainly the technical term) instead of the pointy brackets of the book because I don't want LJ to interpret it as an HTML tag and make my text too courageous.
rionaleonhart: kingdom hearts: sora, riku and kairi having a friendly chat. (and they returned home)
The DDoS attacks that Livejournal has been suffering over the past few days are beginning to make me a touch nervous, so I've acquired a Dreamwidth account, just in case. I'm still rionaleonhart over there. I'm not planning to move unless LJ goes down altogether, because this is very much my Internet home, but if it does that's where you'll find me. For the moment, it exists as a backup.

(...but only in theory, because it doesn't actually have anything backed up. I'm a bit afraid of running the entry importer. What if I inadvertently contribute to Livejournal's traffic problems? Should I wait? What if waiting means I miss my chance and lose my journal? I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO.)

Anyway! In other news, I recently reread Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Have some notes.

Thoughts upon rereading Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. )

Maybe I should try to reread the entire series before the final film is released in July. Hmmm. We'll see.
rionaleonhart: kingdom hearts: sora, riku and kairi having a friendly chat. (and they returned home)
Things are a bit stressful at the moment (you know the Mitchell and Webb theory that housemates fall into the categories of 'people who are annoying' and 'people who become annoyed'? I am an annoying housemate; the friend with whom I live is an annoyed housemate, and she is at the moment actively annoyed, and when people are annoyed with me I tend to get very upset and run around trying to cook them meals and buy them chocolates (please do not exploit this knowledge for chocolates)), and so, seeking a distraction, I invite you to share extracts from silly things you wrote in your childhood. (EDIT: Silly things you drew are also very welcome!)

For my part: recently, looking through some of the things I drew and wrote when I was a child, I stumbled across the following poem I'd written about my name:

H is for all of the harvest fruit
A for all the apples on the tree
R is for the redcurrants on the bush
R is rabbits for you and me
I for ice cream
E for eaves
T for Tutancarmoon* the egiptians believed

* lol

I clearly sort of gave up halfway through. Eaves, Little Riona? Eaves? Really? You genuinely couldn't think of another word beginning with 'E'? Tutankhamun was really something you associated strongly with yourself?

There's also a card I've written to my dad. It says, 'Dear Daddy. Happy Birthday! I hope you like your Presents. Love From Reepicheep.'

I had completely forgotten that I used to pretend to be Reepicheep when I was younger. I'd walk up and down the house, pretending that I was on the Dawn Treader and had to keep my balance. (He's a swordfighting mouse; who wouldn't want to be him?) The idea of my dad fathering Reepicheep is a tiny bit alarming, frankly.

Also: 'Daddy has his article that he is reading titled "Becketts Bass ruling proves the fallibility of convential wisdom". It does not seem to make sense at all. Why dosen't he just read the Beano?' I concur, younger self; who needs newspapers when you could be reading comics? Honestly. (Ooh, a search turns up the article in question and therefore allows me to date this particular pearl of wisdom! I would have been just about to turn nine. Bit appalled by the fact that I couldn't spell 'doesn't' at that age, although I'll let 'convential' slide.)

And there are the beginnings of a made-up language! To my amusement, 'fic' meant 'shut up' and, although the language had only thirty-four words, one of them meant 'pretend to be a mouse'. I knew where my linguistic priorities lay.
rionaleonhart: final fantasy versus xiii: a young woman at night, her back to you, the moon high above. (nor women neither)
My favourite quote so far from For Richer, For Poorer, Victoria Coren's poker memoirs:

There is not enough money in the world for Ram. He is ever so handsome and the lady croupiers get lost in his big dark eyes, but Ram doesn't seem to notice women. If the dealer was topless, Ram would still look at the cards. He once had a girlfriend who asked Ram to write her a love poem. He wrote, 'On the moors there's heather and bramble, but all I want to do is gamble.' They are not together any more.

(I'm reading this book very slowly, I know, but it's absolutely not because I'm not enjoying it. I am savouring it. It's a great book to take to a coffee shop and read over a mug of hot chocolate.)

I bought For Richer, For Poorer on the way to see The Unbelievable Truth being recorded a couple of weeks ago, which leads nicely into my next paragraph: whilst waiting for the recording to begin, [ profile] valderys and I started talking about throwing underwear at David Mitchell, for some reason (as a general concept; we weren't making plans). We eventually concluded that the only way one could fittingly throw pants at Mitchell would be if they were very sensible plain M&S knickers, still in the five-pack. Nobody should actually do this; there's too much potential for injury, and you'd almost certainly be kicked out of the recording. It's just a thought that amuses me.

I spent the weekend at my aunt's, and in the course of the visit I read The Worry Website, one of many Jacqueline Wilson books belonging to my adorable tiny cousin-once-removed. I cried. I haven't read a Jacqueline Wilson book in so many years, and I'd forgotten what a wonderful writer for children she is.

You know, my first attempt at fanfiction - conceived before I even knew what fanfiction was - was actually a wildly ambitious idea for a film called Harry Potter and the Double Act Twins, in which Ruby and Garnet, the twins from Jacqueline Wilson's Double Act, went to Hogwarts. My best friend from primary school and I were going to write the script and play the twins. There were extremely fierce fights about who got to play Garnet, which, because I am meeker (...more Garnet-like, in fact), I lost.

I still have my handwritten notes on problems we would need to get around when filming it. These notes tell me that I was thinking we could get the necessary owls from bird sanctuaries, although what I've actually written is 'bird sancuo places'. The plan for Quidditch is 'Players sit on brooms suspended by springy wires. They will easily be able to swing round'. There's an illustration, but I note that the illustration doesn't show exactly what the brooms are to be suspended from.

To my recollection, we only actually rehearsed one scene, which involved my brother Joseph (playing Harry Potter) crawling along the landing towards the imagined Voldemort and snarling 'YOU... KILLED... MY... PARENTS' in the most dramatic way you've ever heard.

LET'S ALL REMINISCE ABOUT JACQUELINE WILSON'S BOOKS. I suppose it's possible that you didn't read her books as a child, in which case I can only apologise for your life. Go back in time, read them, and then come back here and join in the reminiscing.
rionaleonhart: final fantasy x-2: the sun is rising, yuna looks to the future. (hope is all we have)
A handful of Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days observations that I failed to mention in my last entry on account of crying too much:

Phil of Hercules: Now, I gotta head back inside to get ready for the next match, but, uh...
Roxas: What?
Phil: Nothin', nothin'. Well, all right then... I'm gonna go.
(Phil starts to walk away; Roxas turns to leave.)
Phil: Hey, Roxas...
Roxas: Yeah?
Phil: (not turning around) Don't be a stranger. (leaves)
Roxas: What, he wants me to come back? For what? More training? Hunh, weird.

...Square, did you intend me to interpret this scene as the unrequited love of a grumpy satyr for his oblivious trainee? Because, if not, something has gone quite badly wrong. (I think the idea was to show that Phil is quietly proud of him, but there was definitely a moment of 'what - what am I reading?' before I realised that. It's probably a similar inability to distinguish between emotions that led me to think Hermione was in love with Hagrid when I was eleven.)

Also, I love that Xigbar calls Axel 'Flamesilocks'. Xigbar is great fun in this game. He's hilarious, and, despite being generally callous and mocking, he does seem to have an odd fondness for Roxas.

Luxord seems to be slightly fond of Roxas as well, giving him advice on life (even if it's so heavily dressed up in poker metaphors that Roxas can't really follow it) and gently poking fun at him. A part of me wants fanfiction in which Luxord is a sort of pseudo-father figure for Roxas. (I find it intriguing that Luxord wears an earring in the shape of the Nobody symbol. Does that mean he's in some way proud of or happy with his identity as a Nobody?)

Speaking of things that make me cry endlessly: [ profile] zarla's latest entry of Hunter-Smoker-Jockey-Charger comics tore my heart into confetti, and so I'm thinking quite a lot about the ladyzombies at the moment, and so, inevitably, I am coming up with terrible crossover ideas. SMOKER IS A NOBODY AND INSISTS THAT, WITHOUT A HEART, SHE CANNOT FEEL EMOTION. HUNTER WILL SEE ABOUT THAT.

I also want to see an AU in which Hunter, Smoker, Jockey and Charger are all in prison together and try to break out. Yes.

Seriously, there needs to be so much fanfiction about these four. I'm actually weirdly tempted to claim Hunter/Smoker for [ profile] 1sentence, if the owners of this universe wouldn't mind.

A final note: I've been getting a bit of spam in my journal lately, so I've turned on CAPTCHA for anonymous comments. Sorry if this inconveniences anyone who wants to comment anonymously! You'll still be able to comment; you'll just have to type in a couple of words to prove that you're not a robot first. (If you are, in fact, a robot who genuinely wants to chat, I can only apologise.)
rionaleonhart: final fantasy x-2: the sun is rising, yuna looks to the future. (the end)
Watching the first of the Deathly Hallows films has inspired me to reread the entire Harry Potter series in order. Here are my notes on rereading Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, twelve years after receiving it for my tenth birthday!

Notes on Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. )

In unrelated news, Peep Show last night, although brilliant (just thinking about Alan Johnson was still making me laugh hours afterwards), sort of broke my heart. And it was the last in the series, so we won't know what happens to the El Dude brothers for ages! I'm tempted to write fix-it fanfiction, which isn't something I generally do.
rionaleonhart: final fantasy x-2: the sun is rising, yuna looks to the future. (the end)
I was just trying to remember what my mental image of Snape was when I first started reading the Harry Potter books, before the films came along and replaced it with Alan Rickman, and then I realised that, although Phineas and Ferb didn't exist at the time, my Snape looked a lot like Heinz Doofenshmirtz. I don't even mean that he looked like a live-action Doofenshmirtz might; my mental images of everyone else were realistic people, but Snape was very clearly a drawing. His nose in particular was Doofenshmirtzish.


Relatedly, have a handful of thoughts on the first Deathly Hallows film!

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part One. )

In conclusion, hooray!

Wow, it's going to be so strange when the final film comes out. The end of an era! Although I've never been very involved in the fandom, Harry Potter has been a significant influence in my life since I was ten years old.

(I've just remembered that last night, as I was going to sleep, I wandered along a line of thought approximately as follows: Why did I never really write Potter fanfiction? Maybe it's because there's too much already; it's too difficult to be original. I have to think of something nobody has written before.

What I seem to recall I came up with, as I drifted off, was doves flying out of Hermione's vagina.

In the light of day, this doesn't seem such a great idea. Look, it was half past one in the morning (unusually late for me; I had to walk home from the cinema, as the buses were all hiding from the snow). I was half-asleep. I can't be held accountable for whatever bizarre ideas my subconscious throws at me in that state.

Knowing this fandom, someone's probably written it already, anyway.)
rionaleonhart: final fantasy x-2: the sun is rising, yuna looks to the future. (cortese)
Thoughts post-'Hairography' (I've now watched up to 'Sectionals' but don't have a great deal to add):

Oh, dear, I 'ship Finn with Quinn and Rachel and Kurt, and I can't see polyamory working out for them. THIS MEANS THAT MY HEART IS BREAKING FOR AT LEAST TWO CHARACTERS NO MATTER WHAT FINN'S CURRENT ROMANTIC SITUATION. Kurt's little face in particular, simultaneously hopeful and heartbroken and knowing that nothing's ever going to happen, twists my insides.

I'm amazed by how much I've come to like Quinn. At first I thought 'oh, stereotypical evil cheerleader', but she's turned out to be so much more than that.

I love Tina's rendition of 'True Colours'; she should have more songs! Meanwhile, I'm a bit torn on the performance on 'Imagine'. Intellectually, I was uncomfortable with New Directions interrupting the deaf choir's performance. Less intellectually, I am a sap and easily emotionally manipulated and I cried and cried.

(Glee has started making me cry quite a lot, in fact. THIS WAS NOT PART OF THE DEAL, GLEE. You promised to make me happy! YOUR NAME COUNTS AS A PROMISE.)

SOMETHING THAT IS SIMULTANEOUSLY ABSOLUTE GENIUS AND THE WORST THING EVER: the Glee fandom refers to Puck/Rachel/Finn as 'Puckleberry Finn'. When a fandom offers a potential 'ship name that spectacularly awful, I suppose there's no excuse not to use it.

In news unrelated to Glee, I have been looking through some of my old notebooks lately. Here is a delightful story that I wrote at the age of thirteen:

The Trap made of sticks, leaves, grass and a hole.

Once upon a time there was a trap made of sticks, leaves, grass and a hole. If a person stepped on the grass leaves would plaster themselves over their eyes, sharp sticks would spike them and they would be sucked into a black hole. But nobody stepped on the grass. The trap was very sad.

The End

I am oddly proud of my younger self for subverting traditional hole-and-foliage-based-trap expectations.
rionaleonhart: top gear: the start button on a bugatti veyron. (going down tonight)
I don't know exactly when I discovered fandom, but I believe it was when I was twelve or so, about a decade ago, and so it seems an appropriate time to begin posting my fanfiction to [ profile] riona_archivic, which I have created as a way of keeping all my writing backed up in one place. I'm up to mid-2004, working forwards. You don't need to join it - it's really for my own reference, and I'll still be posting new fanfiction here - but you're welcome to join if you're interested. In addition to all the fiction available on the Internet, it contains quite a bit of terrible writing I've later taken down out of embarrassment (filed on the old shame tag JUST SO IT'S EASIER FOR YOU TO FIND IT AND ME TO CRINGE), and I'm planning to archive my unposted and unfinished 2004 NaNoWriMo effort there (I suppose I'll create an 'unposted' tag for things that have never been posted anywhere). Also, I've added a bit of context and commentary for most things in the headers, if you're interested in that sort of thing.

If you do join, the tags page sorts the fiction by fandom, pairing and year written. I would strongly advise not adding it to your flist, because there are hundreds of stories I haven't posted yet and it would become very cluttering very quickly.

Some notes on the experience of archiving:

- I actually wasn't as bad a writer in my early attempts as I'd thought I was. I wasn't good, certainly, and some of my early work makes me cringe, but I was never really terrible. (Although I did occasionally write things that were incredibly ill-advised. DON'T READ THE FINAL FANTASY FAIRYTALES. JUST DON'T.)

- In a way, reading my early works, which simply and obviously weren't good, is less painful than reading later ones, which are almost good but scuppered by a couple of glaring flaws. I suppose I have more distance from the earlier ones, both emotionally and stylistically. Later not-good fics are too close to my present writing for comfort.

- I can see my writing evolving over the years! It is quite exciting.

- In my first few years, I wasn't really 'in' fandoms; something in a canon would interest me, so I'd write a fic about it, and then I'd move onto the next interesting thing in the next canon. I think the first fandom I really felt I had a presence in was Red Dwarf, although my fanfiction for it has been lost. (This is probably fortunate; it was not good fanfiction.)

- I don't write female characters as much as I should, but I'm coming to realise that that wasn't always the case. In my early teenage years, I wrote to explore ideas that interested me, and sometimes those ideas involved girls. What changed? I never stopped loving female characters; why did I stop writing them? Can I return to my original 'the gender of the character is irrelevant; wouldn't this make a cool story?' attitude?

- Of course, the larger number of female characters in my early writing can be in part attributed to the fact that I wrote more about original characters, many of them female. My original characters in my early teens were all such brats.

- I've always been primarily a gen writer. I'd thought this was an inclination I discovered in the Supernatural fandom, because I didn't really 'ship anything in Supernatural, but no; my fanfiction has always been predominantly gen. Supernatural wasn't an anomaly; the anomalies were Scrubs and Top Gear, where most of my writing was slash.

- Sometimes I recognise elements of characters I would later write in my characterisation of earlier ones, which is always a bit disconcerting but was particularly so when I realised that my Gippal/Baralai fanfiction was on some level Jeremy Clarkson/David Mitchell.

- My fourteen-year-old self was not a great wit, but this extract from her attempt at a Lord of the Rings Mary-Sue parody did sort of crack me up:

"We must go up the Snowy Mountain," cried Gandald.

Amy knew there was going to be an avalanche. "Let's not bother. I heard on the weather forecast that there would be avalanches today."

"OK," said Gandalf.

A reminder, in case you missed it: if you decide you want to join the archive, you won't want to add it to your flist. I've still got six years of archiving to get through. There are literally hundreds of entries to come. (Also, please bear in mind the year in which something was written. I certainly hope I've improved over the past decade. If you hold something I wrote at thirteen to the same standard to which you hold the things I am writing in my twenties, you are going to be disappointed.)
rionaleonhart: twewy: joshua kiryu is being fabulously obnoxious and he knows it. (is that so?)
I haven't been remembering my dreams for a couple of months, and all of a sudden my subconscious is filled with befriending anthropomorphic foxes and being groped by David Tennant (as I'm not attracted to him at all, I feel that this dream was rather wasted on me) and fleeing zombies in a hot-air balloon and seeing Charlie Brooker around Camelot. I wonder whether it's something to do with the hayfever medication. In any case, it's quite cool to be dreaming again, even if it involves moments when I'm bitten by my zombie brother and see my hands greying in front of my eyes.

Has Brooker said anything about Merlin? I like to imagine he has a weird, shameful fondness for it, despite its many flaws.

Having dreamt about seeing Charlie Brooker in Camelot, in fact, I sort of want fiction in which he is in Camelot, but I have no idea what he'd do there. Get on Uther's bad side, I imagine, by criticising and mocking his attitude to magic users, largely because he is one of the few to know of David Mitchell's magical powers, which Mitchell is barely able to keep under control. DAVID MITCHELL AND CHARLIE BROOKER: MEDIAEVAL POLITICAL CRITICS IN LOVE.

This is an incredibly stupid concept. Never mind.

(I noted this down as 'Brooker/Merlin' in my notebook and then had to hastily clarify that this was a crossover concept, not a pairing. Charlie Brooker/Merlin as a pairing would work on exactly no levels. I think Merlin would be slightly alarmed by him. Brooker would be frustrated by Merlin's well-meaning thickness. My mind absolutely refuses to entertain ideas of a romantic relationship.

David Mitchell/Guinevere, on the other hand, could be incredibly weirdly cute.)

Because it just reoccurred to me, Tales of Riona's Rubbishness: in my late teens, I bought a pair of size 16-18 pyjamas because I thought the numbers referred to age.

I'm a UK size 10.

This should give you an idea of how often I buy clothes.
rionaleonhart: okami: amaterasu is startled. (NOT SO FAST)

Once upon a time, when I was a fairly small Riona and my brother Joseph was even smaller, he and my (also small) cousin came up to me in a state of great agitation and swore they had seen an alien in my room. It was tall and grey, I seem to recall, and had somehow exited through the window.

Because I was not quite small enough to be entirely credulous about such things, I went into my room to investigate, and my brother followed. (My cousin, I think, may have refused to go in.)

There was a small grey pebble on the inside windowsill, and my brother decided that the alien must have left it there. I was beginning to see what was going on here: they had put a pebble on my windowsill, and now they were trying to persuade me that an alien had been in my room. Well, I wasn't falling for that.

"Look, it's only a pebble," I said, reaching out towards it.

"Don't touch it!" my brother exclaimed.

I touched it.

It exploded.

I have no idea how such a ripe puffball had managed to grow on my window without my noticing, but it certainly made for a traumatic childhood experience.

Shall we share amusing stories about our childhoods in the comments to this entry? I think that could be quite fun. (Whilst we're on the subject: I've been short-sighted since birth, but I didn't have my eyes tested until I was seven or so. Because it is difficult to see rain when one is short-sighted, I used to think it was invisible, like wind. One day, when it was raining particularly heavily, I realised I could actually see the rain if I concentrated hard enough. I thought I had superpowers.)
rionaleonhart: final fantasy x-2: the sun is rising, yuna looks to the future. (you have got to be kidding)
Er! Apologies if any of you saw the entry that was here for a few seconds before I deleted it; I accidentally hit 'Enter' in the wrong place and posted my entire saved entry draft, which contains assorted unfinished fragments that may or may not become full entries in the future. What I actually intended to post was this.

Here is a story for you: there is a song called 'It Wasn't Me', sung by a man apparently named Shaggy. It contains the following line:

Picture this: we were both buck naked, banging on the bathroom floor.

For years - for years - I thought he meant that he and his ladyfriend were actually on their hands and knees next to each other, hitting the floor of the bathroom with their fists. I didn't quite know what they were trying to achieve with this, or indeed why they had deemed it necessary to discard their clothes prior to their floor-banging session, but that was what I envisioned whenever I heard the song.

The probably-intended interpretation didn't hit me until a month or so ago.

(If you have any musical-misinterpretation stories of your own, do share!)

Why do I want to write so much Kingdom Hearts fanfiction all of a sudden? I want to write about Sora and Riku and Kairi having adventures! I want to write Sora/Riku/Kairi! I want to write about Hayner and Seifer travelling through all of the Kingdom Hearts II worlds in their endeavour to make it back to Twilight Town and gradually coming to grudgingly respect each other! I want to write about Sora and Demyx being best friends! I want to write Leon/Tifa! THERE IS EVEN AN EXCEEDINGLY WRONG PART OF ME THAT WANTS TO PAIR RIKU UP WITH MICKEY MOUSE.

Unfortunately, I have been utterly unable to write anything lately.


(In the case of Riku/Mickey, however, that's probably for the best.)

Finally: Donna Noble of Doctor Who is losing really quite badly to Zoe of Firefly in the second round of [ profile] cidercupcakes' all-female character championship poll. I don't expect her to win (she's almost two hundred votes behind), and although I'm not a Firefly fan Zoe seems fairly cool, but I'd like to close the gap at least a little, because Donna Noble is one of my favourite characters ever.
rionaleonhart: peep show: mark stares at you in anguish, looking as if you've just taken his job away and eaten it in front of him. (all i wanted)
I was going to play Pokémon Crystal, you guys. It was going to be the first time I had ever played a second-generation Pokémon game. I was really excited.

And then it turned out that the cartridge was corrupted and wouldn't register saves.

I am genuinely woeful. I WAS GOING TO HAVE A CYNDAQUIL AND I WAS GOING TO NAME IT MERLIN. (And my Red-version save also appears to be corrupted, so I have to start again. Fortunately, the cartridge still registers saves. Had my beloved Red cartridge been rendered entirely useless, I would probably have wept. I got it for Christmas when I was ten. It was my first ever videogame. My first Pokémon was a Bulbasaur named Bulby, and oh how I loved him. (Oh, how I completely failed to train any of the other Pokémon on my first team.))

In order to make up for this sad, sad lack of Pokémon-playing and soothe my ten-year-old soul, I would like to request that you either share your own Pokémon-related stories (what was your first Pokémon? Which is your favourite? What do you always have on your team? What do you name your Pokémon?) or write Pokémon-related ficsnippets (crossovery or otherwise) in the comments. Pokémon-related photomanips or doodles would also be very welcome. JUST POKÉMON UP MY COMMENTS, GUYS. YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO.

To kick things off:

"Where's Merlin?"

"I'm afraid Merlin is busy, sire," Gaius replies, rummaging through his bookshelves.

"He's not busy. What's he doing? Where is he?"

"I believe he is running an errand for Morgana."

"He's not Morgana's manservant," Arthur points out, straddling the wooden bench by Gaius' worktable. There is a creature on the table, he notices: some sort of large, dark-furred rodent. It is staring at Arthur in a most disconcerting fashion. "Do you have a rat problem?"

"Just a pet," Gaius says, glancing over. "A whim, if you like."

The stare seems almost familiar. Arthur has the unpleasant feeling that Gaius' pet thinks he is an idiot. "What sort of creature is it?"

"A species of mouse," Gaius says. "They're very common in the western regions. I wouldn't go too near if I were you; he can be quite vicious."

He can't be sure in this light, but Arthur would almost be prepared to swear that its fur is blue. He reaches out to touch it.

There is a burst of light and heat, and Arthur immediately draws his hand back to shield his face.

A moment goes by.

"Gaius," Arthur says, "your mouse is on fire."
rionaleonhart: final fantasy x-2: the sun is rising, yuna looks to the future. (can't tear us apart)
Apparently, [ profile] zarla's Pokémon website, Neglected Pokémon Lovers Unite!, had its tenth anniversary a few days ago!

'What?' you may ask. 'You've never mentioned this website before. Is it important?'

You probably weren't actually asking that, but I am going to tell you anyway. It is important. It is so important.

There are two specific writers I can pick out as huge inspiring influences in my personal fannish development. [ profile] thebaconfat is one; back in 2003, her Final Fantasy VIII fanfiction made me aware of how vastly inferior my writing was, and my aspirations to reach her level led (I hope) to a great improvement over a period of years.

Before that, [ profile] zarla was the reason I began writing fanfiction in the first place. More rambling about Zarla's early Pokémon fanfiction and my childhood. Probably not terribly interesting. )

Anyway, this anniversary has put me in a hugely nostalgic mood, and so I would like you all to share your stories of early fandom life. Here are mine:

- Prior to discovering fandom, my primary Internet activity was searching for Anti-Pokémon websites and writing stories about the website creators being attacked by Pokémon on their guestbooks.


- Nor am I proud of the first work of fanfiction I ever posted to, an entirely directionless Pokémon-journey fic that reached twenty thousand words before I took it down in shame, asked for character submissions from reviewers and opened with the author's note 'Heya! ^_^ I'm Riona, a new author, and this is my FIRST EVER FICCY!' Oh, past self.

- My first fandom was Pokémon, obviously. The earliest work of fanfiction I remember reading - not the first I read, certainly, but one that lodged in my memory because it upset me so much - was one in which Ash committed suicide. That's right. Ash Ketchum. Ash Ketchum killed himself. This is the sort of thing I was reading when I was eleven, apparently. I have a very clear memory of Misty and Brock later seeing Pikachu apparently playing with someone who wasn't there. Little Riona (or 'Mew', as she called herself back then) found all of this most distressing.

- I am fairly certain that one of the first stories I read on (earlier I had been using Pokémon fansites for my fanfiction needs), and possibly the first m/m story I ever read, was a Legend of Dragoon fic in which Lloyd raped Dart in a public lavatory. I was probably thirteen. I did not know that this was what the story contained when I clicked on the link, and I was mildly perplexed. (Again, it was [ profile] zarla's writing that was responsible for my later developing an active interest in slash and eventually writing it myself.)

So! Do you remember how you got into fandom? Do you remember the bizarre early things you read or wrote, the mistakes you made, the most amazing fanfiction in the world when you were ten? Who were the authors whose writing shaped yours? It is nostalgia time.
rionaleonhart: final fantasy x-2: the sun is rising, yuna looks to the future. (he's already had sex with you)
I just stumbled across the following conversations with [ profile] sazzlette and [ profile] wanttobeatree and laughed until I wept. The first is a long build-up to a beautifully appalling punchline; the second just makes me crack up every time I read it.

The first conversation. You may not want to read this if you have not yet seen the first episode of the fourth season of Supernatural. )

And the second, which is entirely devoid of Supernatural references, spoilery or otherwise:

[ profile] wanttobeatree: I very almost spat a mouthful of soup out to lol at you
[ profile] sazzlette: ahaha ir ead that as soap
[ profile] sazzlette: i was like LOL YOU'RE EATING SOAP WHAT
[ profile] rionaleonhart: I once ate soap.
[ profile] wanttobeatree: ... for
[ profile] wanttobeatree: a reason?
[ profile] rionaleonhart: It was shaped like an apple and smelt like an apple.
[ profile] wanttobeatree: sauidfkdlgfosdap
[ profile] wanttobeatree: omg
[ profile] wanttobeatree: you are shit
[ profile] rionaleonhart: I wanted to see whether they had covered all the senses.
[ profile] wanttobeatree: I once tried to eat a stone
[ profile] rionaleonhart: I BET YOU HAD LESS EXCUSE
[ profile] wanttobeatree: a friend had this bowlful of them and he told me they were that magical stone-looking candy
[ profile] wanttobeatree: but no
[ profile] wanttobeatree: it was just a bowl of stones
rionaleonhart: final fantasy x-2: the sun is rising, yuna looks to the future. (can't tear us apart)


Catching a Mew was my dream ten years ago. My online identity was Mew before it was Riona. I tried all the ridiculous cheats people on the Internet made up to waste your time - you know, 'trade Pokémon that know Surf and Strength from someone else's game so you can surf out to the side of the S.S. Anne before it leaves and move the truck to find a Pokéball with Mew in it' (for the record, there is a mysterious truck, but there's no way of moving it) - and reached the conclusion that my Mew-ownership was, alas, never to be.

AND NOW IT TURNS OUT THAT THERE ARE GLITCHES THAT ACTUALLY WORK. (This video makes Method One (the one I used) easier to understand.)

ITS STATS ARE AMAZING AND IT LEVELS UP AT THE SPEED OF LIGHT. Also, Pokémon Red is still the best game ever made (with the possible exception of Pokémon Blue, because they got all the cool cartridge-specific Pokémon muttergrumble (seriously, Sandshrew? Vulpix? Meowth? What do we get? Freaking Ekans and Mankey. Although I suppose Growlithe is acceptable (YES, I'M BITTER))) and I have no idea why I haven't played it in so long.

Sorry to the people who have no knowledge of or interest in Pokémon, except I'm not really and I'm just about to Pokémon up this entry even more.

I named my Abra 'Sammy'.

AS ALWAYS, BAD (or indeed good!) POKÉMON MANIPS AND/OR FAKE POKÉMON CARDS ARE MORE THAN WELCOME IN THE COMMENTS. Or you could tell me about some of the Pokémon you had on your team in the original Pokémon games. (DID I MENTION I HAVE A MEW?)