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Just a heads-up for anyone who may be interested...

The One Laptop Per Child initiative is, for a brief time, offering a special opportunity to those in the U.S. and Canada. Donate $399 to OLPC and provide one laptop to a child in a developing nation and get one yourself. $200 of that amount is tax deductible (the other $199 is the value of the laptop that the donor receives). These are pretty impressive little machines. Find out more about the program and the xo laptop itself at The xo laptop isn't just a compact, energy efficient laptop, it also converts to an ebook reader. Pretty neat.
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I've begun clearing the backlog of unposted story updates for my site. Hopefully, the site will be fully updated within the next week or so.

I've also been plugging away at my own writing. There is some progress being made and I will reiterate that none of my stories or series have been discontinued or abandoned. I am, however, struggling with writing (yes, again *sigh*), as a few nasty surprises in Real Life have apparently sent my muses into hiding once more. Any new stories that get posted will be complete prior to posting, as I do not want any more WIPs out in public. New chapters for existing stories will only be posted if they don't end with cliffhangers (unless the following chapter(s) to resolve the cliffhanger are also completed).

Any outstanding charity/auction items from me - be they stories or whatever - will be honoured as soon as possible. Unfortunately, I can't guarantee when that might be. I sincerely apologize for the delays (and everyone please note that I no longer offer anything for auctions that is not already finished and ready to go, as I've learnt my lesson). Thank you for your patience.

If anyone is/has been trying to contact me, I also apologize as I have been completely unable to keep up with email, LJ, and fic comments. Unfortunately, I don't see that changing anytime soon, as I'm going to continue to be rather badly overwhelmed with a number of things for the foreseeable future. Whatever time, energy, and inspiration that I manage to scrape together will be spent on writing, when the muses cooperate, and guest fic updates, when the muses do not.
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I'd truly hoped to have several things ready to post by now. I had vacation booked last week and had planned to spend most of it writing and dealing with other fandom-related things such as updating the guest stories on my site. Unfortunately, those plans were rather abruptly changed.

My favourite uncle was, unexpectedly and shockingly, diagnosed with terminal cancer late last week, was given the choice of hospice or home, and chose home. He spent a single day at home, held on until the relatives made it there, and passed away within hours of the last arrival.

Understandably enough, my fandom-oriented vacation plans were rather abruptly abandoned. I'm not making any predictions or promises regarding when I'll be getting things back on track again, as my thought processes at the moment are extremely scattered.

Just posting so that people will know that I am still around, just possibly taking a bit of a break from fandom in general while I try to get back on a more even keel. Even without challenging the power of "worse", it seems like every time that I start to think I'm getting things under control in Real Life, something comes along to swamp me again. Right now, it feels like the score is Real Life: 5000 - Calic0cat: 0.

Disabling comments here as I'd only end up feeling guilty for not having the time, energy, or interest to respond to them. I'm feeling a rather urgent need to focus on Real Life - and family in particular - for the next little while.
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For all the fans out there - be they fans of a show or a book or whatever the case may be - I'd like to recommend that you go read Salvos Against Big Brother, an ongoing series of articles by author Eric Flint. Published in the Jim Baen's Universe online sci-fi magazine over the past year or so, they're a thought-provoking look at just how free distribution of music/books/etc. actually benefits authors/singers/etc., contrary to the hogwash touted by the RIA (among others, including certain authors, studios, and publishing companies). The whole concept of "fair use" comes up repeatedly, along with the idea that copyright has become far too restrictive. Flint doesn't just offer rhetoric, either - he offers hard facts to back up his statements (such as the fact that, directly contrary to normal book sales, several of his own novels sold (and have continued to sell) more copies after he made them available in the Baen Free Library than they did before).

Go, read, and soak up the arguments. Methinks they apply to fanart and fanfic just as well as to the topics that Flint is addressing directly. If only more authors/singers/artists felt this way and banded together to force the publishing/recording/TV & movie companies to fall in line... *wistful sigh*
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Why, oh why, does HP seem to spawn so darn many AU xover drabbles/ficlets for me when every other fandom spawns long stories? And why won't the darn muse let me concentrate on my WIPs instead of providing me with these annoyingly persistent new plot bunnies? *sigh*

HP drabble/ficlet - gen, AU, xover, FRC (Fan Rated Suitable for Children) )
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Urk. Sorry to everyone that I owe email or journal replies to; I'll try to catch up on at least the emails/posts that require a response sometime over the next week or so. If you really need an answer and I don't get back to you before the weekend, drop me another line and I'll make sure that I get a response out.

Just when I thought things were settling down a bit in RL, everything got very hectic all at once. A community group that I'm involved with suddenly needed a website built from the ground up in a matter of days, after the rather grandiose plans (why use popular open source software when you can re-invent the wheel by coding your own photo gallery/forum/etc. from the ground up!) of the volunteer in charge of it failed to materialize. I'd never used Drupal before but it was the best option for their requirements, so I spent a few days rather frantically familiarizing myself with the system and its plugins.

Then, three different major technology projects at work hit major glitches at the software/service supplier's end that left me scrambling to cobble together workarounds that would give us something remotely approaching the promised functionality.

There were four - no, correction, five - equine-related events (2 plowing matches, 2 horse shows, and 1 parade) in less than four weeks.

And, on top of all that, we have well water and the pump quit working; between trying to find parts and tracking down exactly what was actually wrong with the darn thing, it took a whole week to get it fixed. With hot weather and two horses in the barn, that meant a lot of buckets had to be hauled from the garden hose (all five hundred or so feet of it stretched across the field from my brother's place) to the barn, another hundred plus feet away. Then, of course, there was more water to be hauled an even longer distance to the house in order to flush the darn toilet. Plus laundry had to be done and showers taken next door at my brother's as well. :P Not fun.

And this week isn't getting off to a very good start, either - I had a dead UPS waiting to greet me at work this morning and the tape backup hardware also appears to be dying. A brand new server needs the operating system reinstalled because it came with the 64-bit version installed and the software that needs to go on it isn't compatible. Oh, and my immediate supervisor (who places the hardware orders and was supposed to be getting an experienced tech out to look at the backup hardware) is on vacation all week. And, just before I left the office for the day, I was informed that we need several laptops completely reconfigured for use at a convention - oh, and they need them ready tomorrow. (But, of course, no one actually knows exactly what needs to be reconfigured, so I have to try to contact someone and find that out first!) ARGH!

On top of that, my muse has been demanding my attention throughout the entire time period that I haven't been able to spare any time for writing! Very frustrating, especially considering how long I've been battling writer's block. I've squeezed in a few minutes here and there to poke at a couple of things but the only thing ready for posting is a little HP xover (yes, another one :P ) drabble/ficlet. I'll post it separately in a few minutes. I haven't quite decided what to do with these tiny HP drabbles as far as posting them anywhere other than on my journal. I may have to create a new category on my site just for the teeny-tinies, as I hate to clutter up the main categories with them, especially since I know a lot of people don't like to read the real short stuff.

I will try to get around to a site update this coming weekend, as we don't currently have any horse shows or anything scheduled for then. *crosses fingers*
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I now have both a and an account, both under the username calic0cat - feel free to friend me there. I'll be posting to all three journals, SEMagic permitting. *crosses fingers*

I've also attempted to transfer all past posts (though unfortunately comments can be archived locally but not reposted) to both accounts; it appears to have worked pretty well, though the GJ account may be missing a few as it threw some errors during the process.

If anyone wants/needs some help in backing up their LJ account (posts and comments) and/or reposting their LJ posts to another journal site such as GreatestJournal or InsaneJournal, [ profile] eeyore9990 has a great walk-through here for Windows users. For those in need of a Mac or Linux alternative (or simply another Windows software option), try here. Even if you're not planning on moving, an offline archive of your LJ account would not be a bad idea.

[edit]*eyes mood theme* Hmm. Considering the anti-HP-slash climate around here, maybe I should think about changing that...[/edit]
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Everyone who heaved a big sigh of relief when Strikethrough 2007 appeared to be resolved - we relaxed too soon. Pond [ profile] ponderosa121 (Notice the lovely new way that deleted journal names show up? Obviously, "Strikethrough" was a little too catchy as a rallying cry.) is amongst the latest victims - see this post on [ profile] innocence_jihad for details or pop over to this post on the GJ community fandomtossed for more discussion.

I created a GJ back during Strikethrough, just in case, and I think I've now figured out how to post to both journals simultaneously using the SEMagic client, so I'll be trying to keep that one up to date. I'll probably start looking into transferring a copy of my past LJ posts over there as well. First priority, though, is going to be editing the ugly-as-heck default journal style. :P
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I really wanted to get this posted in time for Harry's birthday but didn't quite make it (at least not in my own timezone). However, it's still July 31st in some places, so I'm going to go ahead and post it - and hopefully won't find five-billion errors when I re-read it again after a good night's sleep. :P

Fits into the universe sometime after "Wish" and before "Family".

BtVS/HP crossover, Birthday, Not Synonymous universe, AU, FRC )
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Sorry for the continuing rather deafening silence, folks. For some reason, one "season" seems to be leading straight into the next without any real breaks this year; we went straight from haying season into horseshow season and free time seems to be staying in decidedly short supply.

However, on the upside of things, what little free time I do have is being spent writing. Yes, the muses have in fact been on speaking terms with me again lately. *crosses fingers and hopes she didn't just jinx herself* It may be a while yet before anything gets posted, however, as I've been concentrating on one of my very-overdue Moonridge Auction fics (GW, 1x2x1) and it won't be posted until it's completely finished. I won't even make any estimates on exactly when that will happen but things are moving along rather nicely at the moment, so keep your fingers crossed! I've written more in the past couple of weeks than in the entire year before that, so... *crosses fingers again* Wish me luck and hopefully I'll have some ficcage to post soonish!
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Well, after finally thinking that I was going to have a little time to do some writing and online stuff (website updates and the like) this week, my year-old HP laptop decided to throw a hissy fit on Monday.

Read more... )

At any rate, of course, now that the week is over and I've wasted my "free time" on computer troubleshooting, the stupid laptop is now working again and I'm too busy to get anything done. :P

I'm also seriously late in reminding folks that the Moonridge 2007 Auction is in progress. I don't have much up in the way of donations this year; just a (store-bought) fleece throw, a set of four glass coasters, and a pair of blue glass mugs (glassware all acid-etched by me using graphics adapted from various sources). Descriptions and pics are up on the Moonridge Auction site and bidding is at The Free Auction (and will be ending just after midnight tonight). Other items in the auction will be closing at various times throughout the day tomorrow.

I'd hoped to have a chance to polish off a couple of the mostly-completed short fics that are kicking around on my hard drive in time to donate them, too, but my laptop kind of screwed that plan up royally. :P
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Ack. What is it with me and crossovers lately? Not to mention me and writing short things, especially in the HP fandom. Anything else, I get to write a few paragraphs of some monster-length plot, but HP, I get to write drabbles and ficlets. *pokes muse*

Err, and what's with the gen ficlet bunnies? *pokes muse again*

Untitled HP ficlet, HP/OMG! xover, gen, Rated FRC )

*Note: in case anyone doesn't recognize the other series, OMG! (aka AMG!) is Oh (Ah!) My Goddess! (Japanese title: Aa! Megami-sama!). Wikipedia has a decent explanation of the series here:
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I have no clue where this came from. *eyes drabble* Ah well, at this point, I'll take whatever the muse has to offer. No matter how totally random it may be...

Untitled Random HP Drabble - Gen, Rated FRT, Word Count: 146 )

*blinks in bemusement* Like I said, totally random... (and quite possibly the shortest thing I've ever written...)
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Just a quick post while I'm waiting for Windows Update to do its thing on the computer I'm currently setting up. I didn't get as much accomplished over Easter as I'd hoped; the muse simply didn't cooperate. However, I have gotten a bit further on a couple of things; hopefully, something will be far enough along for posting within a week or so. *crosses fingers*

I should get back to writing soon; I bought a gorgeous new computer desk (one of those lovely solid wood rolltop ones) and it was delivered late last week. Getting the old computer desk and old writing desk emptied and removed so that I could get the new desk set up has been a bit more time-consuming than I'd expected.

Especially since I've ended up completely re-arranging my computer room - including the various bookcases and so forth. Which has led to a major weeding operation on my personal library of books, videos, and DVDs. I figure anything that I've had no desire to watch/read in the past five or six years could safely be disposed of. :P I'm way too much of a packrat; some of this stuff has got to go.
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I'm still pretty busy, mostly with Real Life stuff. However, I've had a bit of time over the past few days (and hopefully through the Easter weekend as well *crosses fingers*) and I've managed to get a few website updates underway.

In the Harry Potter fandom, I've started uploading several new guest stories to the site, two of which are actually completed elsewhere, so I should have them fully uploaded within the next few days. I also uploaded "Family", one of the ficlets in my BtVS/HP crossover series, "Not Synonymous"; somehow, I'd missed uploading it previously.

In the Gundam Wing fandom, I've updated Capricious Purple Clarity's "Harry Potter and the Forgotten Heirs" with the latest chapter and I've started uploading a new guest fic, Comechatcha's "A Thief in One Life, A Thief in the Next" (2x1, 3x4, HxK), a nearly-complete crossover with Yu Yu Hakusho. It will probably take me the rest of the week to get caught up with posting it.

Hopefully, I'll manage to get some writing done later this week; right now, my brain is just too tired to be creative. :P
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While doing a bit of file reorganization on my computer, I came across a rather old little fic fragment, barely even a drabble. I very nearly trashed it but ended up rescuing it from the Recycle Bin with the notion that maybe I could turn it into something to post for Valentine's Day. Well, I kind of missed my date goal, but I did finally turn it into something that I'm not ashamed to post. It remains untitled, however, :P so suggestions are more than welcome.

Untitled Valentine's Day ficlet, GW, 1+2, Rated FRT for language )
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I'm considering adding downloadable eBook versions of some of the completed fics on my site. Probably only my own fics, at least for now, and probably just the longer ones, at least initially. Quite a few authors, especially in the HP fandom for some reason, are offering this option and I've discovered that I rather like the alternative when I want to read a long story. So, I thought it might be nice to give it a try on my site.

I'm highly inclined towards the Mobipocket format, as the reader software is freely available for a wide variety of devices and the files tend to be smaller and the reader nicer than Adobe Acrobat reader. However, if people already have a favourite format/reader other than Mobipocket, or if no one would download and use the files regardless of the format, then I obviously need to rethink this idea. So - here's a quick little poll to evaluate people's interest.

[Poll #942698]
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It's here at last!

LWH#107 - Preparation Part 8 )

Keep your fingers crossed, folks, the muse seems to be on a (slight) roll here...
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*waves sheepishly* Err, hi, everyone. Long time no see, eh?

I've finally finished moving all the stories from my old site to my one (and let's not discuss just how many years it's taken me to complete that not-so-little task...). I've also posted most of the chapter updates for guest fics on my site, plus I've started adding some new guest fics. I also discovered that I'd never gotten around to uploading Chapter 8 of my own "Mission: Nerima", so I took care of that as well. Which inspired me to drag out the chapter fragments that I've had kicking around for the past year or two, and...


(Mission: Nerima - Chapter 9 (GW, WIP, crossover, eventual 1x2, 3x4, Ranma/Ryoga, FRT) )

Please excuse any errors; I'm a little out of practice at the moment. *sweatdrops* Hopefully, I got the worst of the writing issues cleaned up without destroying this fic's rather - err, unique, shall we say? - "feel". However, do feel free to point out any remaining problems that you notice, so I can fix them before I post this anywhere else.

Now, if I can just figure out how to fix some of the most glaring "very-old-fic" issues in the remaining parts of this... *pokes chapter fragments and cringes*

June 2016



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