matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Book-verse Harry Dresden)
Just back from the Burlington Barnes & Noble, where I picked up a copy of the much-anticipated anthology of shirt stories, featuring one previously published story which got past me somehow, and a never before published novella which takes place hours after the cliff hanger ending of "Changes". Just started reading it -- mostly the blurbs before the stories, in which he describes the genesis of each; is it wrong of me that my biggest shock is the new author photo on the back flap? Jim Butcher has cropped his hair and shaved off his beard. He looks like a completely different guy. O.O
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Book-verse Harry Dresden)
Nicked from [livejournal.com profile] cupcake_goth, and it's an utterly adorable little meme:

Name four comfort-reading books:

-"The Tao of Pooh" by Benjamin Hoff: Taoism made even easier, by seeing it through the eyes of a certain Bear of Very Little Brain

-"The Halloween Tree" by Ray Bradbury: I re-read it every October, and I don't think there's any other writer who captures the spirit (HA!) of the season as well as the Grand Old Master

-"American Gods" by Neil Gaiman: Okay, it has its Nightmare Fuel moments (Bilquis and her John, in that early chapter), but there are so many cool stories within this book that I like to open it at random and just reeead when I need a pick me up

-"Blood Rites" by Jim Butcher: Funniest opening and ending lines ever, and the reveal in the middle is a CMoH that makes me go "Awwww..." every time I read it.

BONUS! -"Yami no Matsuei (Descendants of Darkness) Vol. 5": Since the cultural elitists like to say this isn't a book since it's manga, I thought I'd Leave It In Anyway. It might start out with a funny-shivery Muraki cameo, but this one makes me just go "awwww", as Tsuzuki finds a book that one can get lost in and meets a gender-flipped version of himself.
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (TDF Welcome to the Jungle)
Nope, I don't seem to be doing my usual "devour the book in one day" since I've been juggling it with Gregory Maguire's "Wicked", which I for some reason never finished when I started reading it two years ago. We recently had the book version of Elphaba turn up at the Mansion and I decided this was a sign that I needed to finish familiarizing myself with her world.

I'm trying to avoid spoilers, but I have to say, "Changes" is not pulling any punches. "Hurt the hero" is one of the many rules of good fiction writing, and let me tell you, Jim is roundhouse punching Harry in this one. The series is not going to be the same after this, and I'm dreading some of the reactions that the small handful of kiddie fans will have -- though older fans will be cackling with glee (while secretly wincing at the things that go down).
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (YnM -- 003)
Since life is being full of unpleasant lately, whether its wondering if Mrs. Tolliver has invaded LiveJournal, given the sense of entitlement comments on the maintenance comm, or getting my head thrown out of whack when I did my income taxes. I swear, the forms for the State tax get more complicated every year. Ugh...

But... I come bearing a fragment of a fanfic which I doubt will ever be developed into a full length fic

"Untitled and Unfinished Dresden Files/Yami no Matsuei fragment"

NOTE: Short bit of dialogue between Harry Dresden and Thomas Raith about one of Thomas's nephews who's in the same age range as the two of them

'So where does your nephew fall on the scale of vampires?' )
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (TDF Turn coat)
Just got my copy today and whoo... it is going to be a very wild ride. I don't want to spoiler it, but there is an urgency in this book that hasn't been this intense in the previous installments. Harry's world is going to get a lot darker than it's ever been and Jim is not pulling the punches (not that he ever did, but he's got knuckle dusters on this time). I'm finishing up some [livejournal.com profile] carpe_ho_ras tags before I head out to continue reading it; this is likely to be a late night, even though I've got work in the morning. Though I could give him a friendly wedgie for the "please don't feed the shippers" moment in the fifth chapter. And anything with well-placed Stuff Blowing Up as well as a laugh out loud reaction line at the end of the scene has a lot going for it.

Also some changes of my own: after the hair debacle at work, I got my hair cut, so now it's very short at the nape of my neck and tapering forward toward my jaw, somewhat like the Major's hairstyle in any of the incarnations of "Ghost in the Shell" (lacking the pouffy bangs, plus my hair is brown and not stylized purplish-black).

And on my list of "People to Dip in Honey and Throw to the White Court Vampires" is the author of the so-called "humorous" take on vampires "Dracula Was a Racist". I understand those who don't like vampires: that was me some years ago (thanks a lot, Lamer-ique: you know who you are...). However... please to not be mocking otherwise good vamp lit just because of trash like Twhinelite. We don't like it either, but we don't find your condescending attitude funny at all. And no, my sense of humor isn't impaired, I just don't like people being deliberately offensive and dismissing stuff that I like as "appealing to Asian-obsessed nerdom" (this directed at "Hellsing" and "Vampire Hunter D"; and it's people like you who send me right to the anime, since I like my animation with lovely artwork [eg. "Princess Tutu"], plots that challenge your mind [eg. "Evangelion"] and characters whose personalities and relationships tug at your heart [eg. "Yami no Matsuei"]) or calling it "too dense" and making snarky comments about "no one making their way through it" (this directed at "The Historian"). Rrrr... I don't get offensive mockery as humor. It's the second cousin to ethnic/racial/gender-related jokes, except it's not as pinpointed at one specific group. It's the kind of stuff that isn't politically incorrect, but which is definitely manners incorrect. It's different from snark, which is more mischievous and playful as opposed to condescending and nasty.

Well, enough ranting: I got myself a box of Tazo Green Tea Latte concentrate, which is utterly delicious -- and it's great to get green tea that is *GREEN* as opposed to green-tinted amber or pale green. I'm hoping, once I find someone who sells it, to graduate to matcha, or powdered green tea.
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Muraki with roses)
So... I got an email yesterday from Newbury Comics, announcing that, to celebrate the release of New Moan New Moon on DVD, they were having a vampire stuff blowout sale, and a vampire costume contest. I only wish I'd had more white clothing in my wardrobe, since I was tempted to go dressed as Thomas Raith from the Dresden Files. Except that no one would know who I was supposed to be (come to think of it, the Twhinelite characters have some of the most non-iconic costumes imaginable: they dress like regular teenagers, pretty much). And then there's the questions I'd get:

"You can't be a vampire, where's your fangs?"

"White Court vamps don't need 'em: they just take your lifeforce by touching you."

Also, it would be really fun going costumed as -- yep, you guessed it -- the fine fellow in my icon, though I'm still trying to find a place that sells silver cosplay wigs, since that's going to be the hardest part of the costume to acquire. And if there any Edweirds around, it would be the icing on the cake to pull off an impromptu live-action version of "Red Moon/Akatsuki", by flirting with said Edweird (and likely weirding him out). Though I'd still get the "What makes *you* a vampire?" questions. Still, it would make for interesting conversations (and the fun of not breaking character to explain energy vampirism, which puts me in mind of certain conversations in [livejournal.com profile] carpe_ho_ras, as one gent describes the condition in depth to another fellow academic...).
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (TDF Turn coat)
Aside from work being dull and the weather being dreary: I've been curled up under a blanket reading (A Game of Thrones with an occasional manga chaser) when I haven't been going on Wiki Walks or researching things (ranging from making ofuda to reading lists of medical slang terms).

And... and... and... Things are getting exciting in [livejournal.com profile] carpe_ho_ras. I'm contemplating bringing Inari Raith from The Dresden Files (possibly a pre-"Blood Rites" version) into play, except I'm having a few problems finding a model for her since 1.) based on her name and her description, I keep seeing her as having a Japanese mother and thus I'm stuck trying to find a grey-eyed Japanese stand-in for her, and 2). It doesn't help that Jim Butcher has said that he always imagines TDF as an anime when he's writing it, so the temptation is there to start looking for grey-eyed anime girls. To say nothing of how much it would amuse me to bring in the bit of fanon in which I stealth crossed-over TDF and Yami no Matsuei, with Thomas Raith commenting on "his half-nephew in Tokyo". Which would make Inari the half-aunt to Muraki, whom I'm already gauging to bring into play (albeit burned, bleeding and looking like a ceiling collapsed on him because it did, per the climax of the Kyoto arc...), and thus would make for some awkward explanations:

Inari: "Oh, he's my nephew."

Random interloper: "What? He's in his thirties and you're not old enough to drink yet."

I'd almost like to see how our girl would turn out if her demon *did* get awakened, and how she'd be trying to keep it controlled, since I don't see her being a total sex bomb like her sisters. She's too kyoot!
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Book-verse Harry Dresden)
The Dresden Files RPG manuals are being released in June I think I know what my slightly late birthday present to myself is going to be.

Also: The "Help Haiti" comm collected over $US 70K! And it seems they're doing a second volley of the Lightning Round, starting Thursday. Not sure if I'll be taking part in it this time as I'm thinking about Valentine's Day fics and themes thereof and requests for (More about that in another post...). BUT I've got a little cash right now and I'm thinking of donating instead of pesting everyone for donations like I did the last time. Or I may write a fic I've been wanting to and make a donation. We'll see.

And in the simple pleasures category: I discovered at work that Little Debbie's is now making single size red velvet cake-lets. Cue a squee's from various centers in my brain.
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Book-verse Harry Dresden)
Jim has adjusted his policy on fanfiction:

http://www.jimbutcheronline.com/bb/index.php/topic,15307.0.html

I've posted mine on there and I'm tempted to go forward with the Dresden Files/Yami No Matsuei crossover that wants me to write it. Except I can't come up with a decent plot for it, though I came up with a climax where the White Council has Muraki pinned down and they're about to execute him (since he's pretty much broken every one of the Laws of Magic), when something happens to interfere (possibly our boy pulling a Houdini). And I also had the mental image of Tatsumi giving the Merlin one of his subtle verbal bitch-slaps. To say nothing of Molly crushing a teeny bit on Tsuzuki, who'd be happy to reciprocate, but I don't think Michael would take too well to it given the age and religious differences.
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Book-verse Harry Dresden)
The first of five fics I've offered in the Lightning Round for the [livejournal.com profile] help_haiti community outreach. I still got four slots open and I'm burning to help.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Title: "Fine Dining"
Author: "Matrix Refugee"
Rating: PG (mild language)
Character(s): Harry Dresden, Thomas Raith
Genre: Gen, humor
Word Count: 932
Comments: Written for [livejournal.com profile] yamikonumber7 as part of the Lightning Round at [livejournal.com profile] help_haiti, with "cooking lesson" as the prompt du jour. Takes place probably sometime before or after "Dead Beat".
Disclaimer: The Dresden Files series does not belong to me, I'm just playing in the universe and shying snowballs at Jim Butcher's fanfic-phobic rules-lawyers.
----------------------------------------------------------------------

I couldn't really blame my brother Thomas for getting bored with my usual cuisine out of a can... )
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (SPN Castiel)
I figured since I posted a big ol' post about my views on slash, that I'd add in a bit about other pairings (ie. things not really touched on in the Teal Deer that I can see happening based on evidence in the canon/mythos (I've started to get away from using the word "canon", since it smacks of religious overtones, and it's personally bothersome, especially when you get some fans who are as wacky about some things in fandom as religious fanatics are about their interpretation of the tenets of their faith. I like the word "mythos": hey, it worked for H.P. Lovecraft). Bear in mind, though, I tend to shy away from graphic sex scenes, depending on the mood I'm in. But with me, the key in everything is *GOOD WRITING*.

Cut for length and content )
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Dresden Files)
One of the fics I wrote because I wanted to see it written and because I love the deep brotherly love between Harry and Thomas...

On the Fifth Day of Christmas, the Matrix Refugee fanficced for ye:

Harry Dresden for the holidays,
Frank Sweitz adopting a David unit,
One Chateau Christmas party,
One American Gods fic,
and An A.I. fic with David decorating his first Christmas tree.

"Moving Pictures"

by "Matrix Refugee"

Disclaimer: The Dresden Files do not belong to me, I'm just playing in the universe and shying snowballs at Jim Butcher's fanfic-phobic rules-lawyers.

Author's Note: One of these days I will write a Dresden Files fic that isn't set at the holidays, but this one begged to be written. Christmas is a time for families to be together and I thought I'd show a certain generally snarky wizard enjoying some family time with what family he has. I've also combined elements of the TV series with the book continuity; don't shoot me: I found both about the same time, so my heart likes to weave the two together. Mild spoilers for "Blood Rites" and "It's My Birthday, Too."

--------------------------------------------------------------------

Christmas time tends to bring with it a small rush of nit-picky cases... )
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Harry Potter who)
I managed to get a rather nice if simple blouse to wear to the wedding (if we don't get snowed in...), but due to some difficulties catching a bus, I ended up with an hour to kill at the Starbucks inside the Target in Lowell. This became anything but a total loss, as I finished writing another fic for the 12 Days of Fanfic challenge (which I may post tomorrow). The only catch was, I had to deal with the squeeing teenaged girls at the next table:

Random teen #1: "Oh, we went to see New Moon again last night."

Me: :: Internal: Moans, not in a good way::

Random teen #2: "Oh, I've seen it three times!"

Me: :: Internal: There's better movies you could rewatch that many times....::

Random teen #3: "The book is better. Trust me."

Me: :: Internal: Hm. There's some amount of hope...::

This was even more cringe-inducing since I was writing a Dresden Files fic, featuring Harry's brother Thomas the energy vampire; as soon as one of the girls went on about wanting to meet a real vampire someday, I had to restrain myself from by turns cringing and chuckling to myself at the thought of said girls falling prey to the White Court. I also reminded myself that "Daybreakers" comes out next week and it looks like the perfect antidote to the fangless sparkle-pires. That shot in the trailer of the humans in what looks like some kind of Matrix-esque body pods always makes me think, "One way to deal with the Twhinelite fanggurls: feed 'em to vampires with *fangs*." I imagine there's going to be a lot of "Daybreakers" metafiction involving said fanggurls, as well as Photoshoops of said shot in the "Daybreakers" trailer with Kristin Stewart's face superimposed on one of the random humans in the body pods, if there isn't already. I admit I'm even fighting off a plot bunny involving a dhampire of sorts who's caught in between the humans and the vampires in the Daybreakers-verse, but that's going to have to wait till I actually *see the movie.

Also got caught in a surprise rain shower while leaving the library and running to catch a bus... and then it turned into a very pretty snow shower.
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Ho_Ho_Ho_Flood)
Just brought a bag of Beanie Babies (and some "wannabeanies", ie. beanbag stuffed animals that aren't Beanie Babies but wish they were...) to the Toys for Tots bin at work, and also got my hours for the week: I have ten hours! Yahoo! I guess I got a chance to play St. Nicholas today.

I'm tempted to ask someone to put a Santa hat on my Muraki icon, but I guess if I'm going to stick any Santa hats on any White-Haired Pretty Boys of fandom, it would be safer to stay with the Santa-hatted Flood icon. The least that would happen is he'd get really pissy about it and possibly scream about his hair getting messed-up, but he wouldn't pull anything too nasty (unless the culprit was one of the Merv's operatives, in which case, he'd send them on a suicide mission...). If anyone put a Santa hat on the guy I've begun referring to as "the killer snowflake who eats speshul snowflakes" (well, anyone but his ladyfriend who's only seen in the manga), I'm sure he'd find an especially creative and painful blend of magic and science to kill them.

I've also been beating away ideas for a Dresden Files/YnM crossover. Granted, it could work, but I don't have the time or creative energy to plot another fanfic right now. Meifu likely exists somewhere in the Never-Never, and I don't doubt Muraki is a White Court vampire: I keep hearing Thomas referring to him as "my crazy cousin Kazutaka". Plus, it would be funny to watch Harry and Molly trying to deal with Tsuzuki and Hisoka: I can see Molly crushing a bit on Hisoka, though the snarky young shinigami is unlikely to reciprocate; she might have better luck with Tsuzuki, though I have a feeling the bouncy one with the sweet tooth would be on the bad side with Harry for running up the food bill.
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Book-verse Harry Dresden)
"Wear the old coat, buy the new book." -- Attributed to Erasmus

Been a bit of a busy book-buying week for me. Tuesday night, my mom had an appointment at Lahey Clinic, so I hitched along and went to the Burlington Barnes & Noble: the "Strange Brew" anthology -- featuring a new Dresden Files short story -- had just come out and I was determined to get a copy. I hear it's currently number 1 in Fantasy books on Amazon.com. And it looks like SMeyer has currently fallen off the NYT Bestsellers list, ousted by Charlaine Harris, she of the Sookie Stackhouse mysteries.

And then yesterday, as I was browsing the book section of a local WalMart, I found "Strange Brew" on the shelf next to the Twilight and the House of Night novels! I guess the manager of this particular WalMart realizes that urban fantasy sells -- especially better-written stuff.

Also nipped into the Used Book Superstore in Burlington, since I had a gift card that still had some money on it: there's someone who likes to unload their World of Darkness novels there: I picked up a two-in-one collection of Werewolf: The Apocalypse novels this time, and before, I've found a couple Vampire: The Requiem novels.

Friday at the gift shop at St. Joe's, I picked up two teen novels from Sophia Institute Press's new Imagio imprint: while I might be irritated with the Church, I'm still philosophically and culturally attached to it, so reading well-written Catholic novels helps boost my spirits a little. I just get a little depressed when I find better Catholics between the covers of a book than I do in real life. Well, enough angst: the books are part of their new "John Paul 2 High School" series, dealing with a group of teenagers attending a small group home-school of sorts started by a group of parents who decided to take the matters of their kids' education into their own hands. I've only just started reading them, and so far they're pretty good.
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (TDF Turn coat)
I'm on my way back from a trip to the Burlington Barnes & Noble, where I just picked up the much-anticipated Book 11 of The Dresden Files! Granted, I've already read the first five chapters when they were posted to Jim Butcher's website, but the story is so dang good, it was worth re-reading them a second time (not counting the podcasts which featured Jim reading those first five chapters aloud). I'll take care not to spoil it too much, but I'll say these two things:

One, the universe is getting darker, almost in a World of Darkness kind of way (or it could just be resonating with me more since I've been reading the Mage: the Ascension/the Awakening sourcebooks lately).

And two, the dedication for this book is touching, and a good example of how much Jim has an ear open to what's going on among the fans on his forum.

Also got a very odd new release: "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies" by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame Smith". This got discussed on the JB forum, plus I'd seen it get a top review in "Entertainment Weekly", so the Jane Austen fan and the fantasy fan in me got very curious. I'm told if you like "Pride and Prejudice" and you also like zomedies like "Shaun of the Dead" (or even if you're fond of one but not the other), you'll find it hysterical.
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code ("The Only Wizard Listed In the Yellow Pa)
I'd started writing this for a [livejournal.com profile] dresdenflashfic challenge back in May, but I missed the deadline. So I revived it and revised it for a gift on [livejournal.com profile] fandom_stocking:

Title: Falling in Love All over Again
Characters: Malcolm and Maggie Dresden, and mentions of Justin Morningway and a pre-born Harry
Rating: PG (just to be safe)
Spoilers: Possible spoilers for "Blood Rites"
Word count: 1,244
Summary: A tender moment between Maggie and Malcolm as they look forward to things to come…
Disclaimer: The Dresden Files do not belong to me, just playing in the universe and shying snowballs at Jim's fanfic-phobic rules-lawyers (not such a bad thing, since it cuts down on the risk of badfic).
Author's notes: I’ve had the cute mental image of Malcolm and Maggie having some pillow-talk during Maggie’s pregnancy with a certain future snarky wizard, but the story took a turn towards the shadows without going too far, which redeemed this from being mere fluff.... Also, as usual, combination of book- and TV-verse. I found them both at the same time, so elements of the two have become very much blended when I write fic...

Malcolm had hated to bring Maggie with him on the road in her condition )
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Dresden Files)
It seems the second issue of the graphic novel version of Storm Front is being as hard to get as the second issue of TDF: Welcome to the Jungle was. Is any issue #2 of any TDF graphic novel cursed?? Odd.

Made my seasonal journey to the Burlington Barnes and Noble, despite the cold weather today. I went with a view to getting the second "Celtic Thunder" CD, which recently came out (Love these guys to bits and pieces!), and also Schubert's "Winterreise", as performed by one of my favorite operatic baritones, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (I believe it's the 1966 recording, which apparantly his personal favorite of the some seven or eight different recordings he's done over the years). I've been meaning to get this one anyway, and since Void, one of my friends from MxO (and also one of *THE* coolest arts geeks I've ever met), is using this piece as a framing device for his latest storytelling creation, I took this as a sign that I needed to stop putting this one off.

And there was a surprise in store for me. I made a cursory pass through the sci-fi fantasy section and what to my wondering eyes did appear, but the "Mean Streets" anthology, featuring a new Dresden short story. I knew this one was coming out next week, but it seems someone got the jump on the release date.

Wouldn't be a post from me without some dragonly cuteness; the eggs are juust starting to crack, thanks to you:

Adopt one today! || Adopt one today! || Adopt one today! || Adopt one today!

http://dragcave.net/user/Morrae
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (Dresden Files)
My first ever Dresden-fic and I hope I got it right...

Title: Fallen Star
Author: Matrix Refugee (aka Morraeon on the JB forums)
Verse: Combined book/TV-verse (don't kill me, I like 'em both equally since I found both at exactly the same time)
Characters: Harry, the Carpenter clan
Prompt: Stars
Word Count: 3,386
Rating: PG (for teenage rebelliousness and language)
Spoilers: Takes place a few weeks after Small Favor
Summary: Helping the Carpenters get the house ready for the holidays turns into a lesson in tough love between Harry and one of Molly's siblings.
Disclaimer: The Dresden Files do not belong to me, just playing in the universe and shying snowballs at Jim's fanfic-phobic rules-lawyers (not such a bad thing, since it cuts down on the risk of badfic.
Author’s Note: Minor self-insert of myself and my dad, and this story is probably going to get majorly Jossed once “Mean Streets”, the anthology featuring Jim’s new Michael-centric novella, “The Warrior” comes out in a week. A bit sentimental and sparkly, but hey, it’s a holiday-fic and they tend that way.

I've never been a huge fan of the holidays... )
matrixrefugee: the word 'refugee' in electric green with a background of green matrix code (TDF Turn coat)
I was on my way out to at the Burlington Mall's Borders yesterday, to pick up the "Blood Lite" anthology, featuring Jim's short story "Day Off", when I almost tripped over the package containing my copy of the short novel, "Back Up", from Subterranean Press. I'd gotten to the point when I figured it probably wouldn't show till Hallowe'en (a certain snarky wizard's birthday), so you can imagine my delight. I've read through it once and I've posted a review on Amazon.com, before I read it through again...

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