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I took the Myers-Briggs for a high school leadership conference something-or-other and I was classed as an INTJ. It describes me rather well for the most part, although I think my personality bleeds over into INTP territory as well.

I actually still have the booklet from that leadership conference that summarizes the different personality types, so here's what it says about INTJs and INTPs.

INTJs
Have original minds and great drive for implementing their ideas and achieving their goals. Quickly see patterns in external events and develop long-range explanatory perspectives. When committed, organize a job and carry it through. Skeptical and independent, have high standards of competence and performance - for themselves and others.

INTPs
Seek to develop logical explanations for everything that interests them. Theoretical and abstract, interested more in ideas than in social interaction. Quiet, contained, flexible, and adaptable. Have unusual ability to focus in depth to solve problems in their area of interest. Skeptical, sometimes critical, always analytical.


***

I realize I've been slacking on the link-o-llections lately, but I hope this latest edition makes up for it!

Kit Whitfield has two interesting blog posts up about fictional villains: one on how she personally conceives of a villain/antagonist and one on various categories of fictional villainy. Writers on the flist, hop on over!

[livejournal.com profile] vyctori sent me this one a while back - the 10 Most Insane Child-Warping Moments of '80s cartoons.

XKCD exposes the truth of Amazon's Kindle 2!

The blog of a Las Vegas escort girl who actually does not hate her lifestyle! Obviously NSFW.

[livejournal.com profile] wadewilson presents "an instructional discourse on how best to avoid being petty, divisive and annoying to other people when enjoying an online role-playing game of any sort. For I have grown tired and weary of seeing people I like behave like unpleasant high-schoolers, and I am also weary of trying to stop foolish misconceptions from growing into utterly inane enmities".

Got some time to kill? Have some free sci-fi short stories.

This has to be one of the most amazing things from nature I've ever seen lately - a fish with a transparent head with eyes that rotate around inside the head. Holy shit, that is so cooooool!

[livejournal.com profile] eyecatching_art brings us the Stooge Lanterns. I would totally watch this show!

Finally, you don't Twitter about ongoing secret negotiations while they're in progress. You just don't.

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Talking about music I've been listening to lately: Memoira (gothic symphonic rock), Karl Sanders (ambient rock with heavy Egyptian influences), Versailles (visual kei) )

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Talking about music I've been working on: Like the Dew on the Leaves, Gospel of the Shadow of Nobody, Regretfully Yours/No Longer Yours Truly (Written Letter #2) )

***

HON301 paper due date got moved to next Tuesday! Rawk.

-Reileen
no creation without destruction, no destruction without creation
reileen: (Default)
What Reileen Ate Yesterday
Breakfast: Half a can of Mountain Dew.
Brunch: Two small packs of Welch's fruit snacks. Eaten during JPN104.
Lunch: Two fried breadsticks stuffed with pepperoni and a Mountain Dew from the soda fountain.
Lunchinner: One package of Maruchan pot ramen, chicken-flavored. A small bottle of water, followed by a bottle of Mike's Hard Lemonade.
Dinner: One hot dog with ketchup. Finishing up the bottle of Mike's Hard.

What Reileen Ate Today
Breakfast: A bag of regular chips (Miss Vickie's brand, yum) and a bottle of Mountain Dew. Consumed during ANT120.
Brunch: Another bag of regular chips; still working on that bottle of Dew.
Lunch: Five pieces of crab rangoon. Finally finishing up the bottle of Dew.
Dinner: Will be pasta, apparently, and another can of Dew.

I'm not sure why I thought this would be interesting to post, but there you go.

***

Despite staying up 'til 11:30pm working on an ANT120 lab report that I'd wanted to finish earlier and waking up at 6:00am grumpy and groggy as hell, I actually found myself less likely to want to nod off today. This may have been in part because 1) I had a lab today in ANT120 that actually required me to do work and to stay for almost the entire scheduled time of lab, and 2) I went to Chinatown today to stock up on incense, which required train travel and ambulatory travel. I bought sandalwood, cinnamon, strawberry, and "fragrant forest", and the total came out for around $11 for all of it. Yay.

Received my "specialty area" for ART233 today: it's Classical Greece, of course. Although I have to admit I was also leaning towards Sumerian or Babylonian art as well despite the fact that I skipped the lecture where the professor actually talked about these areas. I think I'll probably look those up on my own. Also, I'm wondering if there's a book or a few out there that deal specifically with studying temples from all over the world. In class today, we were looking at the temple of the Egyptian queen Hatshepsut, and I was "dfkljaldkfjaldkf GLEEEEEE!" I love temples. I can't articulate why, exactly, beyond "OMGCOOLANDPRETTY!", but I love 'em. If I'm in a game and we're exploring temples or temple-like areas, it's likely that I'm going to spend a large part of the game with the character just looking up and around at the exterior and the interior of the place. (The Temple of Time in Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess makes me squee. Am also fond of many of the Sephiroth points in Tales of the Abyss and the Spirit Temple in Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.) In short, I am a whore for nearly anything that evokes ancient pagan temples.

(...would that make me a "temple whore"?)

Anyway, I think that's it for interesting things from Reileen's life (which tend to be few and far in-between), so onto the link-o-llection!

***

Kit Whitfield blogs about depression and children's fiction, comparing depictions of depression in Harry Potter, Avatar: The Last Airbender, and in Antonia White's novels. Hefty, but a very interesting read. In particular, I love her interpretation of the Fire Nation royalty in Avatar in the context of depression-running-through-families. She also nails down the strength of Zuko's character in the show - and by strength, I mean not only how Zuko himself would be a strong person if he existed in real life, but also what makes his character from the show so memorable. He struggles; he despairs; he makes mistakes; and ultimately, he grows. I was pleasantly surprised at the care given in drawing this portrait of him throughout three seasons of the show.

Here's a set of candid shots of Barack Obama taken before, during, and after the debate in Oxford, Mississippi last week. My personal favorites are this one, this one, and this one.

And here's Build-O-Bama, where you can cut and fold your very own Obama paper doll for...some...reason!

For every comment made on this blogpost, Tyson Foods will donate 100 lbs. of food to food banks in the Bay Area. Easiest charity since Free Rice. How do these types of things work, though? Technically speaking, this strikes me as a more charitable version of "Give me five reviews and then I'll update with the next chapter!"

Artist builds "temple of science". Let me tell you, I've got at least two characters in my headspace who are going all drooly-mouthed and starry-eyed at this idea. (For background, they're both scientists - or as much of scientists as a scientifically-handicapped person as myself can write - of strong divine heritage.) And now I'm tempted to see if I can build a "religion of science" in a novel. I can already see places where I'd be running into problems, but it would be a fun thing to play with.

[livejournal.com profile] kaigou recounts an interesting anecdote that reveals insight into why a person might seem gluttonous when eating. She also now has a post up of 348 personality quirks that could be worked into a character, which would be an excellent reference for all the NaNoers out there.

Disgrasian wonders about where the hell Asian Barbie is in Mattel's current line of Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader Barbie Dolls. Meanwhile, Reileen wonders how it's possible that Barbie has gotten skinnier over the years.

At the Temple of Kraden, a Golden Sun forum (that I actually am on under my fandom name), there's a thread going on in which people post funny pictures, and others reading the thread try their best to get as far as they can without laughing. Man, I didn't even try that - I just wanted to see the lulz. Which there is a fair amount of. (Be warned, though - that thread is 38 pages and counting.)

Quoting [livejournal.com profile] ysabetwordsmith for Major Fucking Truth from here: "In each faith are found strange and subtle truths. The study of comparative religions is learning the shape of the Divine by groping your way all around the elephant, in the happy company of other blind people."

Also quoted for MFT is this excellent post from [livejournal.com profile] dien about writing fanfiction vs. writing original fiction:

So when you remove fandom from the equation, you're removing exactly what people came to fandom for in the first place: the characters and the worlds. You've got to create your own. And maybe writing in someone else's world has been like training wheels, maybe it's shown you the kind of thing you're going to need to do for yourself. Without having actually written narrative fanfiction, I still look at what JK Rowling's said about her process in terms of planning out a long series. What do you give away, how soon do you give it away--her decision to move Horcrux info from Chamber of Secrets to a later book, that kind of thing. But you're also in danger of having steeped in someone else's world for so long that you write your own thing, and it's like everything everyone's already seen.

Yes. Yes, yes, a thousand times yes.

Eerily enough, look at [livejournal.com profile] dien's list of things you learn writing fanfiction vs. what you learn writing original fic. Replace "things you learn writing fanfiction" with "strengths as a writer" and "things you learn writing original fic" with "weaknesses as a writer", and those two lists describe me to a big fat T. My strongest points are easily dialogue, characterization, and "the power of well-crafted language" (at least I'd like to think so). My weakest points are plot (which I quickly found out doing NaNoWriMo for the past few years), stories with staying power (again, NaNoWriMo pointed this out to me), and stories that matter.

Also, check this interesting analogy in the original entry from ETA 2: "...we might think of fanfic versus original fic as two different musical instruments-- you can learn how to play music on either a guitar or a piano, but learning how to play one doesn't necessarily mean you will automatically be able to play the other."

-Reileen
your eyes tell of a star's death
reileen: (Default)
Tired of getting rickroll'd? How about getting Barackroll'd instead?

***

After 400+ pages of absolutely hideous wannabe thriller tripe (to say nothing of questionable theology and the morality that goes along with said questionable theology), Fred Clark conclude's in this week's Left Behind posts that the illogic and paradoxes of Left Behind stem not from unreliable narrators used in the literary sense, but unreliable narrators that stem from unreliable authors.

We readers come to this novel with certain expectations. We expect that it will tell us a story -- a coherent narrative that makes sense. Those expectations are so habitual and fundamental to our experience of reading novels that it can take us a long time to accept that such expectations are really being thoroughly frustrated. That's why it took me a very long time -- hundreds of pages -- before I finally conceded that the constant, flagrant contradictions between our narrators' perceptions and their reality weren't some kind of deliberate, meaningful narrative device.

[. . . ]

This chapter might have been more interesting if Buck had turned out to be only partly immune to Nicolae's enchantment and he had emerged from this room less than certain of what he'd really seen -- as though he really were having to fight to keep his sanity. He is, after all, a brand-new RTC, a mere infant in the faith, so the divine counter-enchantment might not have been fully operational just yet.

But that wouldn't work because that's not how the authors' notion of RTC magic works. It's a binary system. You're either 100-percent saved or you're 100-percent damned to Hell. There is no half-way, no partial, no blurring of categories. Truth is wholly true and lies are wholly lies. Good is wholly good and evil is wholly evil.

And that, ultimately, is why readers don't have to worry about things like unreliable narrators in this book. The authors can't have intended such a device because the authors don't believe in it.


***

From [livejournal.com profile] dark_christian: Focus on the Family prays to God for rain to "drown out Barack Obama at the Democratic National Convention in two weeks' time. Word to FotF: I think you're better off using this as your guide for making it rain on Obama's parade. (Yes, I am being completely ironic in recommending anything from Spellsandmagic.com.)

***

I recently discovered the blog of author Kit Whitfield, who comments on Slacktivist under the pseudonym "Praline" and always has articulate and thoughtful commentary to add to any Slacktiposting. She has since been mentally added to Reileen's Roster of Awesome and Brilliant Bloggers To Whom She'd Like to Be as Awesome and Brilliant As Someday, which currently includes the Smart Bitches Sarah and Candy, John Scalzi, the blogginating team at Making Light, and, of course, the Slacktivist himself. Also, throw Vienna Teng in there. Because, y'know. Vienna motherfucking Teng. I wish she'd blog more on her site scrapbook, but in all fairness, she's busy recording her new album, so I'm not going to fault her too much, since anything she puts out - music or writing - is something I whoreship.

Anyway, a sampling of Kit Whitfield's blogging:

Writing sex scenes versus writing porn
The thing is, if your story is intended to be a piece of straightforward porn, you can pick a style and go with it. The usual objections to blunt writing are removed; graphic words for body-parts tend to leap off the page in a rather glaring way if your characters spend most of their time dressed. The reader gets to know the characters in, basically, a social context, like you'd get to know a friend, and if your friend suddenly whips out his genitals, it's a bit startling. Overly graphic sex scenes in otherwise fully-clothed books can feel like too much information, like the characters suddenly changing style and going from Regency elegance or lyrical melancholia to porn-speak, which is as disconcerting as if the vicar poured a cup of tea and then started talking dirty. All of which gives a sense of 'whoa!', which is not exactly the mood for sexual bliss. If, on the other hand, the story you're writing actually is porn, there's no reason at all not to use pornographic language. Direct language can be used all over the place without the style taking a lurch.

But if you're not writing porn, you need to match the sex scenes with the rest of the book.


The myth of the Macho Sue
A disagreeable variant of Mary Sue, often found in action films, cop shows and the more battly kind of science fiction. While Mary Sue is a fictional character who bends the universe around herself with her amazing specialness, Macho Sue bends the universe around his manhood. He has a particular ability to get away with behaviour that would be considered bad in a woman - to the point of behaviour that would be considered typically female by a misogynist if displayed by a woman.

Kit Whitfield's lexicon of issues in fiction
Phantonym
The feeling you get when you're searching for the perfect word: that there is a word for this concept that's not in the thesaurus, but you can't quite remember it. Usually this is not the case, and you're forced to go with a word that's slightly wrong, or else rewrite the whole bloody sentence. (Reileen sez: "I get this one all the time.")

[. . .]

Naglet
A concept or action that you have the nagging sense really should have a single word to describe it-the action of a dog putting its head between its paws on the ground to invite you to play is one that always bugs me - but most unfairly, it doesn't. (Reileen sez: "This is often a jumping-off point whenever I'm doing in-novel conlanging for SF/F. What concepts exist in such-and-such culture to the point of ubiquity, and thus would probably require a word or a short phrase describing it?")

[. . .]

Subconscious-Packing
Reading and absorbing as much as you can in the way of good stylists and general information, on the understanding that it'll mesh together in your subconscious and make your writing richer. Not to be confused with procrastination. (Reileen sez: "It's probably the equivalent of eating past being full, but I follow this philosophy for my art, my writing, and my music. Needless to say, it drives me nuts, but it drives me nuts if I don't at least attempt to do it, so I'm pretty fucked either way.")

The tricky business of defining national insults
It strikes me that a key element of English insults is the idea of self-awareness: a great many of the insults denote someone who, were he aware how he was coming across, wouldn't be acting so stupidly.

The kind of insults a nation creates are an unusual insight into its general character: you wouldn't bother to invent an insult for something that nobody does or nobody minds. Whether this means that, say, England has more wankers and America has more jerks, or that England notices wankers more and America notices jerks more, I couldn't really say. (As an interesting side-note, many English people feel that 'arsehole' is a stronger insult than 'asshole', even though the only real difference is in pronunciation. Curious, huh?)

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From Strange Horizons, an online speculative fiction magazine: Stories We've Seen Too Often and Horror Stories We've Seen Too Often.

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METALLICA IS PLAYING AT THE ALL-STATE ARENA ON JANUARY 26 NEXT YEAR. WANTS TO GO PLZ. D:!

***

For a while now, I've been looking for a decently plain white blouse that I can pair with different items, such as a sweater vest or a plaid skirt (...probably both in my case), and today, I finally found one.

It was from Avril Lavigne's new Abbey Dawn fashion line.

I'm trying to figure out whether I should be embarrassed by this or not.

-Reileen
fortune, fame, mirror vain

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Reileen van Kaile

April 2010

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