tikatu: (animation)
ITV has a approved a Thunderbirds show, entitled "Thunderbirds Are Go!". It'll be produced by NZ's Pukeko Films and the special effects will come from the WETA Workshop. I've heard that the co-owner of Pukeko Films and WETA Workshop, Richard Taylor, is a really big fan of Thunderbirds in the first place. My main concern is that the shows will be only 30 minutes long; Sir Lew Grade's inistence that Thunderbirds be an hour long is partly what made it so successful.

It's scheduled for 2015, which means there'll be plenty of time for the fans to stew and nitpick (because you know they will!).
tikatu: (Default)

I was rather hoping I’d go on doing a drabble a day until the start of NaNo, but something came up today that brought the drabble train to a screeching halt in favor of my novel. I’ll talk about it in a moment, but first, a recap of the whole drabble a day experience.

Writing time frame: September 16th through 28th.

Posting time frame: September 17th through 30th

Total writing time: 13 days

Days missed: 1, leaving 12 writing days

Drabbles written: 15, plus an alternate ending for one. Only one of these I thought was sub-par.

Drabbles posted: 14 as of today.

So, it was pretty good. I only missed one day of writing and the rest saw one or more written.

Revelations )
tikatu: (thunderbirds are go)
Since Camp NaNoWriMo was such a bust for me (August is way busy at my house. Who knew?) I'm going to get myself back into the "writing daily routine" by doing a "drabble-a-day" challenge. If you want to join in, feel free. I'm using the traditional definition of a drabble: a story of exactly 100 words. I'm also trying to write fandom drabbles (mostly Thunderbirds as I know that best) using prompts from various sources -- particuarly [livejournal.com profile] all_unwritten. Not all their prompts are in their prompt list; however, I went through and copied the list to a file, adding the ones that weren't on there. If you want a copy, poke me via email and I'll send it along.

So far, I've written a very depressing drabble and added it to Mosaic. Today I wrote two, one because a bunny bit for a missing scenelet and the other because I'd depressed one of my readers with yesterday's drabble. If anyone could give me some beta/feedback on them, I'd be much obliged. [livejournal.com profile] thatgirlsix is currently swamped by real life (love, hugs, and prayers to you and yours, Six!) and [livejournal.com profile] funkycheese has started back to teaching. (Girlfriend, you really need to update that name!)

Well, the Hubby is on his way home in our cute little 2006 Chevy Aveo (the Girl's daily commute to university really underscored the need for a second car, one with way better gas mileage and fewer repair issues. Credit unions are simply awesome at this loan thing.) I'll post pictures of it when I can pry them out of the Girl's camera.

tikatu: (Default)

As a Fan History admin, I’ve been involved in editing the Russet Noon article, and have been talking with my family about the whole phenomenon – mostly about the copyright issues and the Peter David connection - through his satirical round-robin, Potato Moon. (Peter David is a household word of sorts as my husband remembers his work as a comic book writer, and we have some of his Star Trek novels, too.)

So, today the Girl, a Twilight fan, having heard from me about the latest brouhaha surrounding Lady Sybilla and Russet Noon (i.e. the press release), wanted to see the russetnoon.com website and see for herself what the fuss was all about. I pulled it up, vacated my chair, and went off to cook bacon for tonight’s supper.

I hadn’t finished frying the first few slices when my daughter came out to the kitchen, her hands balled up and an expression on her face that made her look as if she had been sucking limes (she’s rather fond of lemons).

“Ewwwwww!” she cried.

“What’s wrong?” I asked.

“It’s that site! She (meaning Lady Sybilla) has Renesmee all wrong! Renesmee is a self-assured little girl at the end of Breaking Dawn. I don’t see why that should change!”

She shook her head. “I love Renesmee and Jacob to pieces, but if this is from Jacob’s point-of-view, why is it so much about Renesmee? It looks as if the whole book will be about her. And it sounds like she’s approaching Canon-Sue land.”

No sooner had she gone back into the living room, than her next youngest brother (also known as Boy #1, and also a Twilight fan) came in. His fists were balled up and he moved them like Wallace would – but instead of a look of delight on his face (as Wallace would have), he too looked as if he’d been sucking sour fruit – lemons, in his case.

“Ewwwwww!” he said, much as his sister had done. “This Russet Noon thing – it’s like combining sugar and honey in a bowl, then adding it to a combination of margarine, brown sugar and marshmallows in a saucepan. Then adding in some maple syrup and molasses, and dipping a sheet of paper in it and trying to read what is written on it.”

My son loves to cook, and experiment in the kitchen; honey is one of his favorite ingredients. He’d just used it in a loaf of fruit bread and it stuck the loaf to the pan. So I got his drift. He ended his impromptu recipe with, "Renesmee is not bored, and I sincerely doubt she has inadequacy issues.” (Yes, we talk like that in my house.)

I asked my youngest son if he’d read Twilight, and he said no. So, no comment from him.

Going by my own kids’ reaction, I’d say that Lady Sybilla doesn’t exactly have a hit on her hands – should she get past the copyright lawyers unscathed.

tikatu: (Default)

That's the title of the warning posts that I've been spreading around the fandom this morning as I got the news that Lycos Europe is shutting down both their email and their Tripod webhosting services next month. For some fandoms, this being a European thing isn't all bad; the US isn't affected (yet) and most of the active sites on Tripod (if there are any) would be on the US servers. However, for my fandom, this isn't good. The UK is where the widest fan base is, and I know there are still sites on Tripod. Tripod has been around a long while, and some fans moved on to other places - like MSN groups, which is also closing down next month.

Adding in the AOL Groups closure last year, I get the distinct impression that the fannish world is shrinking. Like being on an ice floe and all the edges are falling off, floating and melting away into the surrounding ocean, leaving less and less space to stand on. Many of the webmasters/groups owners have moved on in fandom; some have dropped out entirely. Now the information, pictures, discussions and fanfiction stored on these remaining sites, abandoned or not, will drop out as well.

Is this necessarily a bad thing? In a way, yes. A lot of unique material is going to be lost forever. I went hunting through Tripod's search engine, looking for sites specific to my fandom. None were terribly active, but one had some fanfiction that I've seen nowhere else, and another had some unique computer generated art. Will these be saved by their creators? Will they be posted elsewhere? At this point, I doubt it. How much more of this is tucked away in abandoned Yahoo groups, or Angelfire sites, or Geocities sites? What happens if these are shut down, too, as being "unprofitable" or not "best of breed"? In the greater scheme of things, I suppose they're not much of a loss. Fandom, as important as it is to some now, won't necessarily be important to the same people later. But even in closed canon fandoms, such as my own, there are still fans that come along, all fired up by their new shiny, and it's good to see where others have been before. It's good to know what the clichés were, who the BNFs were, where to find the fanworks that aren't in the mainstream, or where that plagiarist might have found the work s/he is stealing. Those unique contributions are lost, and it stings.

That's what's got me so determined not to let my own MSN Groups go quietly. I've spent the past couple of days copying all the custom pages and downloading any pictures that I don't have on my own hard drive. I hope to use them in building a new site elsewhere... but will that one day go the way these others have gone? I guess only time will tell.

tikatu: (Default)

I've been blogging about the pending demise of MSN Groups, and some about the replacements - most specifically Multiply and Windows Live Groups. Multiply because it is the chosen replacement for MSN Groups, and Windows Live Groups since it is Microsoft's own answer to MSN groups.

So far nothing has come close to the versatility and ease of use that MSN Groups has had.


No other service allowed for custom webpages, for custom logos and buttons and separated messageboards. Nothing was as easy to use as MSN Groups. Just fill out the forms and bingo! You're good to go. The webpage interface wasn't exactly WYSIWYG, but it was close and allowed for far more colors than Windows Live Groups allows for (in fact, WLG doesn't give you background colors for your discussion pages, which is the only place you can use HTML. Pretty much the same for Multiply.) You could easily hide pages, rearrange pages, add new albums, use the pictures from those albums in other spots... the learning curve was as shallow or steep as you wanted it to be. It accommodated both the novice webmaster and the more experienced. It was a great starting place for fandom groups; and a lot of fandoms were represented there.

What will happen to those many fandom groups? Well, some of them will be lost forever come February because their owners just sort of abandoned them to the spammers before this point. There's at least one Thunderbirds group I know of that falls into this category. It has a lot of interesting fanfic on it, but the owner has grown beyond it and has left it for the "lonely singles" spammers to keep it active (otherwise, it would have been deleted years ago). Some groups will migrate to Multiply, some to Geocities, some to Windows Live Groups... they'll be scattered all over, and harder to find. The close-knit communities that had developed over the years will be broken up, never to truly be reclaimed again. A lot of interesting and unique fandom creations will disappear forever. I've already had that happen once to me; the thought of it happening again makes me sick.

Is there a perfect solution to this forced diaspora? Not really. If you want to have the same flexibility as MSN Groups has, you've got to create your own website, and very likely, you'll have to pay for it. And if you want to continue having a free site, you'll have to pay in other ways, with intrusive ads or with a loss of those features you've become accustomed to.  (Yes, MSN Groups has ads, but because of their placement, they are ignorable.)

As a side issue, I've been poking around the Windows Live team blogs for the past few days, and I noticed that they're not asking for feedback on WLG. Everything else, yes. Windows Live Groups, no. I think they know what kind of response they'd get there: a very angry one from a large group of disgruntled MSN Group owners.

So, we're losing a piece of fandom property. What's to go next?

ETA: I'm also aware that AOL is/was dumping their Groups. So there are more fandom communities disappearing. Let's hope that Yahoo doesn't join the pack.

November 2016

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