My Carpet Cleaning Experience

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My Carpet Cleaning Experience

Cleaning the carpet is such a load of work. Along with the cost of the cleaning solution (which is somewhat expensive to tell the truth) and the cost of renting a carpet cleaning equipment because I don’t have one, I needed a minimum of two days to clean my carpet. I used to spend an entire weekend moving the furniture around, setting up the fans, and using this sometimes unreliable machine to clean my carpet. It was a lot of stress to clean.

So on a Monday afternoon after I set my young daughter a cup of porridge and she accidentally spilled it on the floor, I did not want to think of the major hassle I had to go through. This considering that I had finished cleaning the carpet just the previous day. I am a stay-at-home mom, but sometimes cleaning a carpet is not the only item on your housekeeping chores. You have other chores to do, kids to raise, and meals to prepare. Looking at the mess the spilled porridge made, which could not be left dirty, my husband, and I decided to call a carpet cleaning company. I have been a bit skeptical of trusting carpet cleaning companies with my carpet in the past, but I do have to say that the work they did on my carpet really impressed me.

The carpet cleaning company that did this wonderful job was Carpet Cleaning Birmingham Pros, which is based right here in Birmingham.  Carpet Cleaning Birmingham Pros is actually a family run business, and they have such a cohesive and professional manner in their work that I just found so reassuring. The carpet was clean within two hours of starting. Another thing that I liked about them is that they did not use brightening or bleaching chemicals on my carpet, which would have ruined it. I have heard of testimonies of carpet cleaning companies that applied bleaching chemicals in an attempt to remove resistant stains and ended up damaging the carpet.

I was actually very pleased with their work that I asked them to work on the tiles in some other rooms as well, and they really brought the color and shine to them. I have to admit, I will contract them in the future.

I would advise anyone to contract a carpet cleaning company if you are ever in the need for a spot-free carpet shine. In addition to the professional work that the carpet cleaning company will do on your carpet, you get to have free time, or in my case, a free weekend to concentrate on more productive and fun things. I bet nobody dreams of spending a whole weekend scrubbing stain off their carpet, and getting a sore back and ankle in the process. Also, if you sit down and do the math, you may find that someone can do the carpet cleaning in less time, and with great expertise, avoiding the mistakes that amateurs like you and I might make in cleaning the carpet.

Aquarius boys

Aquarius boys

I promised I’d be writing about astrology or writing on Tuesdays.

So let’s ease into it with something fairly… whimsical.

What is it about me and Aquarius boys? Seriously.

My first love (when I talk about love, you know I’m talking about a ridiculous teenage crush, not an actual love affair, right?) was an Aquarius boy. And he was smart and funny and creative and all the things I respect and admire in human beings in general, plus he was hot. (Actually, was sounds weird. We haven’t talked in a few years, but as far as I know, he still is all of those things.)

I’ve always been interested in astrology, but I should point out that his Sun sign was not one of the things that attracted me to him.

Anyway: over the past few years, I’ve been noticing a pattern among my celebrity crushes.

Justin Timberlake.

Joey Fatone.

Nick Carter.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

Aquarius boys, all.

I’m pretty sure you could spot other patterns among these four guys. Like, I have a thing for guys who are younger than me, or guys who have names that begin with J or, hell, guys called Joe who’ve lived in NYC at some point (there’s a non-famous crush who meets those criteria, too!).

Not to mention, American men, or former boybanders or former child stars or actors or musicians (Mr First Love meets those last two criteria, too, but he’s not called Joe and I don’t think he’s ever lived in New York).

(That’s the thing about patterns. Once you start spotting them, it’s hard to stop.)

I want to talk a bit about the Aquarius thing, though.

As an astrologer, here’s one of the things I know: your Sun sign by no means determines your personality. I could spout all kinds of things that popular astrology holds to be true about Sun-in-Aquarius types, and if I squint, I could probably make a lot of them fit. But the truth is, Sun-in-Aquarius doesn’t tell you much about a person. And the chart generally is such a personal, internal, here-are-my-patterns thing, that it’s hard to make any firm predictions about someone’s personality from their chart, even if you know the whole deal.

That’s part of why those books about “being a Gemini” or whatever are such bunk, but that’s a rant for another day.

There’s one thing I can tell you about someone from their Sun sign, though: one pattern.

Each planet represents a human impulse, the desire to do something or other. The Sun is about integration. That is – it’s about taking all the disparate parts of you, all the disparate parts of your experience, and turning all of that into “you”. So the Sun tells you about some of your patterns around that process of integration.

Signs are about how you do it, whatever the impulse of the planet is. Aquarius is all about detachment. So if you’ve got a planet in Aquarius, you’ll be expressing that impulse in a detached way.

So Sun-in-Aquarius people are likely to be integrating in a detached way.

That’s probably going to mean a subtly different thing for everyone with that pattern, because the chart is complicated and also because people vary. But for me, it brings up the idea of being able to separate from your stuff and looking at yourself from a neutral vantage point.

Which is interesting, because boy could I use some of that in my life. A little detached integration would be fairly awesome right about now. And I’m pretty sure that’s been the way of things for a very long time.

What’s even more interesting, is that this isn’t me examining my own chart. Or even examining anyone else’s chart, not really. But I’m still learning something about myself, my patterns, and my needs. Apparently, “detachment” is on the list of needs.

(And no, that’s not in my chart. No Aquarius anywhere for me. I’ve always been a bit disappointed with that, ’cause I think Aquarius is cool.)

In another post, I’ll probably start talking about my own chart. But this is an interesting look at how just looking sidelong at astrology can give me useful information.

Question for commenters

What qualities could you use in your life right now? Where can you get them from?

Back with a plan

Back with a plan

Well – over the last few weeks, it’s mostly been down. Not in the not-working sense, but in the sense of me not posting to it. At all.

Which is a shame, because I love posting here, I love getting readers, and I love this place being a thing. Yay, bloggage!

So I’m instituting a plan.

Previous “post daily!” plans have met with limited success. I tend to keep it up for a while, and then get overwhelmed and burned out and not post for three months. (I know I’m not the only person that does this. But I find this pattern quiiiite frustrating.)

So here’s my new plan.

Twice weekly blog posts.

You can expect to hear from me on Tuesdays and Fridays, at least until the end of November. (I had intended to do this right from the start of the month, but I went on retreat with Havi and that was really intense. So I put the blogging on hold until I got home. Which I have now done. Hurray for home.)

More posts about astrology. And writing.

I’m planning for the Tuesday posts to be about either astrology or writing. One or the other. This gets me writing more often about “my thing”, which can only be good. The Friday posts will be more my-internal-life oriented. I know you guys enjoy reading that stuff. *grin*

Paying attention.

I don’t promise to get any more awesome about replying to comments. I’m terrible. I admit that!

But I’m going to try. I always read and love each comment, but I’m going to pay more attention to the comments coming in and whether they need or inspire a response. I’m not going to start posting “thanks for commenting!” comments, because they feel a bit weird and pointless. If you comment: thanks for commenting.

I have missed you guys.

Really. It’s good to be back, and engaging with you all.

More on the out-of-touch-ness later. Maybe. If I feel inspired about it on a Friday.

Love, love and love to you all, beloved readers.

What do YOU do?

What do YOU do?

So I’m going to join what I’m sure is something of a throng and answer Naomi’s recent questions about what you do. It’s an interesting blog post, and it made me think.

My business is a baby fledgling (I’m still working on my first product!) and I’m not sure if I can answer these questions well. Or at all.

But I’m going to give it a try. Let’s go!

What’s your game? What do you do?

I’m an astrologer. I’ll construct your chart, and either discuss it with you on the phone, or send it to you with a guide on how to interpret it yourself. (I’m still working on writing the guide, but there’s a presale.)

Why do you do it? Do you love it, or do you just have one of those creepy knacks?

I’ve been fascinated by astrology since I was a teenager, but it took me a long time to find a way to be fascinated by astrology and by the scientific method at the same time. Eventually I came across Client-Centered Astrology, which interested me because it strips away a lot of the bullshit about astrology but still keeps all the interesting, insightful stuff.

So yes, I love it. It sort of feeds both sides of me – the hippy woo-woo side and the hard-line rationalist side. Plus, it can help people figure out their patterns. (It certainly helped me do that.) What’s not to love?

Who are your customers? What kind of people would need or want what you offer?

It’s weird, because I don’t have a “demographic” in my head. It doesn’t matter to me where you live, or what age you are, or what colour your skin is, or anything like that.

My customers are interested in working on their stuff and being their own friend.

They’re more interested in asking the right questions than getting the right answers.

They’re curious and playful. Wacky and creative. Smart and loving.

They’re my kind of people.

What’s your marketing USP? Why should I buy from you instead of the other losers?

I’m still not sure on the USP thing, which my monsters say means I probably shouldn’t be in business at all.

One important part of it is that the process of learning about your chart is all about self-discovery – and that that’s an ongoing process, not a one-time deal. Your chart will give you insights that will help you find the next round of insights, and that process will keep on going. (And yes, you can keep on going back to your chart for more information. It’s full of the stuff.)

Another important part is that I don’t ask you to believe in this stuff. You really don’t have to. What’s important is a sense of curiosity and wanting to find out what you can learn about yourself – not being indoctrinated.

A third important part is that I’ll be your friend in the chart reading process. If we talk on the phone, I’ll listen more than I talk, and I’ll help you hear the useful insights in the stuff you said. If I send you just the chart, I’m available to talk via email if you have questions. It’s all about helping you figure out what the chart can tell you about you.

What’s next for you? What’s the big plan?

Well… right now, there is no big plan, I’m afraid to say.

What’s next is finishing up the ebook (it’s getting there!) and figuring out a marketing plan, I guess. Promoting the site and the blog and establishing a sustainable posting schedule so that the endless boom-and-bust cycle stops. (You know… the cycle where I post 5 days a week for a few weeks, then disappear for 3 months. Not good.)

After that? After that, I guess I’ll see.

Things are happening in my world

Things are happening in my world

So. Good evening, people. It’s a little after midnight where I am and I wanted to say hi.


This summer’s been hard-hard-hard and I have been abandoning both the blog and the fledgling business. My health has been very up and down (particularly the mental health part). My fantasy life has been way out of control. But I’m starting to get on top of things, ever so slowly.

Part the first – these past few weeks, I’ve been starting to get on top of my enormous amounts of excess belongings, particularly the clothes. Slowly, the actual stuff I have is starting to fit into the space I have to accommodate it. I’m far from done yet, but we’re getting there.

The room itself is also getting decorated with stuff I like, which is a definite bonus.

Part the second – I seem to have a little more energy than I did a couple of months ago. I’m sleeping less in the afternoons. This feels like a serious breakthrough!

Part the third – I’m looking into getting some Real Actual Therapy and into working on getting my health into better shape.

Part the fourth – my love for Joe continues to inspire my creativity in weird and unexpected ways. It helps to have friends who enable you, and lots of time to daydream. Eventually, I might have something to actually put up on hitRECord for real.

Part the fifth – I’m thinking about the logistical challenges of figuring out whether I can get a job that will pay me some money but not kill me in the process. That’d be nice. Trying to work out the difference between ideal conditions and minimum standards is interesting. We’ll get there, though.

I think that’s all the parts, for now.

This has been an update of stuff that’s actually going on in my life. I’m hoping to start posting here more regularly (again!) and find a way of keeping up regular posts that’s actually sustainable for more than a week or two (again!) so hopefully, your scheduled introspection will return shortly.

Love to you all, dear readers!

Not the best day ever

Not the best day ever

Today, I am having a bad day.

This won’t be more than a note, I think.

I wanted to acknowledge that the big well of depression seems to be looming large today. I can identify some reasons, but I’m not sure I want to, because examining the reasons seems scary (I’m worried I’ll find out stuff about myself that I don’t like). So for now, just acknowledging that the big well is there. Hello, well.

I’m tired. (I did a thing today that was very tiring and ultimately felt a bit pointless. It’s related to World of Warcraft, and the “stuff on the internet isn’t real” part of me tells me it’s not okay to have actual feelings about World of Warcraft.)

I’m worried about the future. (I am having money issues and I’m not sure I know how to solve them and asking for help is hard. I’m doing it, but it’s hard.)

I’m hating on myself. (My head is full of shoulds and shouldn’ts right now.)

Oh, and did I mention I was tired?

That’s about all for today.

I could use some hellos and some hugs, but as usual, I really don’t want any advice.

Thanks, folks.

Engagement. (Not the kind with the rings.)

Engagement. (Not the kind with the rings.)

So here’s what happened tonight.

First, I was going to go to bed. I switched off the Mac and said good night on Twitter and everything.

Then I switched it back on. I was going to come here and write a long and involved post about fan fiction, remixes, transformative art, and hitRECord. I even had a Tumblr post I was going to quote, and everything.

Then I went back and read the post, and of course what was actually said was far less important than what I read into it and the connections my brain made.

(I’d still recommend checking out the post, and most particuarly the video it contains. Definitely on my list of “stuff that makes me smile”.)


My thoughts are, as usual, half-formed and incomplete. But I want to talk about this concept because it fascinates me.

I was going to stick “of course” on the end of that sentence, and then I wondered, why “of course”? I wouldn’t be me without fandom, without my fannish interest, without this particular outlet. I can’t imagine myself without it. So that rates an “of course” from inside my own head.

And “of course” (ha), I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t engage in thinky-thoughts about the things I’m interested in. I need intellectual engagement to feel really involved in something, so I spend a lot of time thinking about the value of fandom. In those of us who are fannish, what needs does it satisfy? Where do the non-fannish find satisfaction for those same needs? What draws us to fandom?

There are, naturally, as many answers to these questions as there are people who call themselves fans.

But for me – and I think for a lot of other fans, too – part of it is about taking a text* that interests you and engaging with it on a fairly intense level. Not only as a consumer, but as a creator, as an artist. It’s not just creation but co-creation. With the originator of the text, sure, but also with your fellow fans. Fandom’s a community. And in that community, you build a much bigger, deeper, wider, broader picture of what the text is about.

Each fanwork (a story, a video, a drawing, a comic strip) draws not only on the text, but the community’s ideas about the text – as expressed in other fanworks and in discussions. And each fanwork goes on to add something to the community’s ideas about the text… which goes on to inform the next round of fanworks.

As a fan artist (of any stripe), you take some idea or some element, combine it with your own skills and your own heaspace, and run with it. You create a new piece of art, drawing on ideas from the original work, but infusing it, of course, with yourself.

You remix it.

You transform it.

It’s truly fascinating, for me, watching this process happen from the inside. Watching fandom build a whole universe on the basis of a two-hour film, simply by asking – repeatedly – “what if?” And then answering the question in fiction, in drawings, in videos, in music, in almost any artistic medium you can think of. And of course in essays like this one. And unlike this one. (Some are very unlike this one.)

So that’s one reason I’m fascinated with fandom. One of the many reasons, but that’s the one I wanted to talk about tonight.

I wanted to talk about the intersection with hitRECord, too. When I conceived of this post, it looked very different in my head, but it turns out that the bit about that place is just an addendum to what I wanted to say.

One of the reasons hitRECord is cool is that it has the collaborative, co-creative spirit that I know from fandom, but with a twist – it’s all done with permission. The whole point is to find someone else’s work, get inspired, remix it, transform it, upload it, and have someone else (hopefully) get inspired to make something new all over again.

Fanworks are potentially dodgy, legally, because you’re drawing on someone else’s copyrighted material without permission. I’ll confess I haven’t looked too deeply into the legal situation, because that’s not really my area of interest, but it’s my understanding that no one’s ever actually been sued for writing fan fiction. (Other things have happened, but transformative work as a concept has never actually turned up in court, as far as I know.)

At hitRECord, where it’s all legal**, the level of engagement seems the same. I’m not sure the quality*** of engagement is exactly the same, because it’s a different community with a different culture, and because by nature, they are not drawing on the same material over and over again. (Some works are remixed repeatedly, but obviously, there’s a huge wealth of material there in many different media.) But… it’s the engagement that excites me.

(Because this is a “process blog” first and foremost, it occurs to me to wonder what about the engagement gets me so enthralled. But let’s leave that where it is for now.)

I think what got me so excited about hitRECord, though, is the idea that the remix doesn’t have to be dodgy. It can be joyful. It can be in the open. It doesn’t have to hide. There’s a sense in some parts of fandom that the whole endeavour is somehow not-okay. (Or maybe that’s just me.) And the fact that hitRECord even exists reminds me that co-creation, remixing, and transformative art can be – Um. I don’t want to use a cheesy word like “beautiful” here.

But the point is, we fan-artists don’t have to be ashamed.

As far as I’m concerned, that’s a bloody important point. I’m definitely into finding ways to not be ashamed of the stuff I do. I’m defiant about my fandom and I’m proud of many of the fan fiction stories I’ve written. They’ve been good for me and they’ve given a lot of pleasure to my readers. (Plus, I think it’s hard to overestimate the value of good erotica for women, but in a post about transformative art, the erotica part is definitely by the by.****)

Did this post suddenly turn into being about hitRECord all over again? I think it did! When I started writing this section, I was pretty sure it wouldn’t be. But there you go. This is where the thought process led me.

So much for an addendum. Turns out both parts are important to me.

The part where transformative art as demonstrated in fandom is immensely cool and the part where we don’t have to be ashamed to want to create this way.

I probably haven’t made all my points here. There’s always more to say. But for now, this is where I would like to stop. Those points are enough for one night.

*I’m using “text” in the lit-crit sense here; we could be talking about a TV show, film, picture, piece of music, whatever.
**Insert juvenile joke here.
***I don’t mean one community or the other is “better quality”, just that they have different…. flavours. It’s 1am, give a girl a break.
****Or is it? A question for another day, perhaps.

Comment-related request

This is as impersonal a post as I’m ever likely to make on here, which means it doesn’t read to me as a cry for help or a whine about my circumstances. (Good!) I don’t see how anyone could, or would want to, offer me advice on the basis of this post – but if in doubt, please don’t. I’d like to keep the blog an advice-free zone.

On the other hand, I would love to hear your opinions on this. On transformative art, on how people engage with the things they read, watch, listen to, or look at, on how ideas and creation work together.

Have at it, darlings!

The hiding thing

The hiding thing

Just a quickie tonight, really.

One of the hard things about my particular brand of stuff is that quite often I find it very difficult to figure out what it is that’s actually bothering me.

Today, I am feeling scattered and disjointed and confused.

This is a pattern – I’ve had this feeling before. I want to say that it’s an identifiable “comedown phase”, but I’m not certain that’s the actual truth.

What I do know is that I associate this feeling with the time immediately after the high of discovering something new or of being deeply into something. So that does suggest “comedown phase”.

I associate this feeling with a panicky sort of worry that it’s going to last forever. And my memories (which I don’t trust) do tell me that I can get stuck in this phase for very long periods of time.

More worryingly, I feel like the next phase after “scattered and disjointed” is “repress the fuck out of that” and the natural result of this is more and deeper depression. I’ve been severely depressed for a year, I’m still ill with it, and the last three months have been particularly bad. I don’t want two days of “oh wow this is a cool new thing” to turn into another three months of depression.

(They probably won’t. I have this irrational fear, though.)

So I wonder if I can help myself out by creating safety and boundaries for myself.

Perhaps while still respecting my apparent need for connection and like-minded people.

Of course, I’m wondering like mad how to actually do this. The things I do to keep myself safe don’t feel particularly productive or helpful, they feel like a set of bad habits. And they’re not particularly conducive to keeping myself connected to the world.

I’m talking about the “hiding thing”. Not posting on my blog. Not even opening Tweetdeck to lurk, never mind actually tweeting. Turning my phone off, or just letting it run out of charge (it’s been sitting on the shelf by the front door, turned off, for about 4 months now). Staying away from World of Warcraft, the Kitchen Table, and other communities where like-minded people hang out. Not arranging to meet up with friends. Not looking at Facebook. Not posting on Livejournal or Dreamwidth.

The list goes on and on and on.

The hiding is a great way of protecting myself and reinforcing my boundaries. But it starves me of connection (apart from connection with my parents, who I live with, but that on its own isn’t enough for me). It starves me of the like-minded people I need.

So how to interact with like-minded people while still keeping myself safe and respecting my needs for safety and boundaries?

There’s something amorphous here about wanting deeper relationships, and also being afraid of deeper relationships. A conundrum, that. I’m great at forming relationships that are briefly deep and intense, and then running the fuck away – in fact, that’s my overwhelming pattern. Relationships that are ongoing and actually work for me? Not so much. (Oh, and that’s epically hard in ways I can’t really explain properly.)

Perhaps the answer is making a friend who has similar patterns to me – the deep and intense followed by the breaks to recover – but there wouldn’t be any guarantee that our needs for intensity and taking-a-break would ever match up.

This post is incomplete. The thoughts are incomplete. But I’m not sure where else to go with it.

Once again I have no solutions.

Once again I ask for no advice.

Just writing this stuff down is, as usual, helpful.

Oh, and apparently, this turned into that post about the hiding thing, which I said yesterday I probably wouldn’t write. So there you go.

Art and “stuff”

Art and “stuff”

After my last post, I have of course been thinking thoughts.

I’m always thinking thoughts – it’s in my nature. Hell, I started this blog to record my thoughts, as a way of this “working on my stuff” thing that I’ve been trying to do for the last year or so. I haven’t been keeping up with it very well, lately, but that’s because I’ve been hiding.

(I’d promise more about the hiding thing, but I already know I probably won’t write the post. This blog works so much better when I write about what’s actually on my mind, instead of writing posts I feel I should write or posts I think I owe my readers. Ahem – anyway.)

These particular thoughts are very ill-formed. They’re about art, and my stuff, and how the two of them interact. They’re about my passion and my message and how I’ve got baggage that appears to be getting in the way of that. As usual, I don’t have any answers yet, only questions. And as usual, I don’t want advice.

So let’s start at the beginning. This could get long. And windy. That’s the inside of my brain.

The starting point is this: I want in to hitRECord.

Oh man, do I ever want in. I want to be one of those people. One of those artistic people who actually creates stuff. Who collaborates. Who uses their passion to make real things happen in the world, things that affect other people. I want to use my passion to make things. I want to use my passion for something.

But I immediately begin to doubt my own motives.

Do I just want to do this so I can have some weird tenuous connection to a celebrity?

It made my heart leap when I read on the web site that hitRECord was at SXSW this year, and so were quite a few of my online friends. Man. Maybe if I was involved in that project, I’d have an excuse to go next year or the year after… and yeah, a chance at meeting a seriously talented actor who has also done this amazing thing and who I fangirl like crazy would hardly be a downside.

If that’s what I really want – well, what happened to the sheer joy of creation and collaboration, what happened to art for art’s sake? Am I just jumping on this bandwagon to be a fangirl?


On the other hand. Yes, I’m constructing elaborate fantasies in my head. But the more I explore them, the more I notice that they’re not really about the actor in question. Not really. Yes, it would be cool to get to meet him and talk about the concept of the remix and about transformative art. Hell, yes. But… it would be rather cool to sit down with anyone and talk about the concept of the remix and transformative art.

This isn’t about Joseph Gordon-Levitt really. (Not that he didn’t do an awesome thing.) The things I’m thinking about run deeper than that.

This is about connection.

It’s about like-minded people.

Joe (I think I get to call him that) is just a human, happens-to-be-famous face on my fantasies about connection and like-minded people.

Okay, so that’s a revelation I can live with. I mean, objectively, looking around my life right now – connection and like-minded people are a bit lacking, at least in person. To a certain extent, that’s been by design lately. (Depression, yay.) But the desire to get connected with people who are thinking the same things that I’m thinking is resurfacing.

I have people with whom I share some interests. Various fandoms. Working-on-my-stuff. Language geekery. Music, to a degree. But so much of what goes on in my head goes unshared.

I want to share it.

That’s revelation number one.

The other part is where I am terrified to take part in this hitRECord thing. Terrified, yes.

Partly because of the doubting-of-my-motives. That’s part of it. But it’s not all of it. I think there’s a lot more stuff to be unpacked. (Do I have to unpack it? Probably not. Do I want to? Don’t know. But there it is, waiting to be unpacked.)

Part of it is the plain, simple, “not good enough” thing. Yeah, I know about that issue. The perfectionist thing. The thinking I’m filthy and disgusting and I suck. That’s old news and I find it boring and miserable and it’s still not resolved and… wow, pile of ick. How to navigate that ick, I’m not sure yet.

Part of it is a feeling of not being very comfortable with my own fannishness. Not sure what the core problem is here, so I’m just going to write down what I know about it. I know that yes, there is part of me that is wanting to connect with this actor dude in some sort of meaningful way. (That in itself is a fannish desire, the wanting to connect with him simply because he’s cool.) And I’m wary of actually taking a punt at something that might lead to some sort of connection with him, while doing other fannish stuff that…

Oh, how to put this. Christ.

I’m writing fan fiction about a character that he played in a film. It’s almost certainly going to be romantic with another (male) character in that film. It might get explicit (it might not, at this point). In light of that, the whole interacting-in-his-actual-world-in-any-way thing seems very uncomfortable to me.

There, I said it.

I am not ashamed of writing fan fiction. I’m not ashamed of writing erotic fiction. Most of the time, I’m not ashamed of writing erotic fan fiction. But as a fan, I write these stories on the assumption that the people who might look at these stories and go “oh holy God” are so far removed from me that… well, that that is never going to happen.

I am extremely wary of taking that barrier down.

Which. OH. OH! It’s a boundary issue!

Everything is about boundaries for me. Almost everything that disturbs me or troubles me or upsets me is about boundaries in some way (or more to the point, about lack of boundaries). And fannishness for me is quite often a safe way to let the boundaries down and let myself get sucked deeply into something – and get all the pleasure and benefits of being-sucked-in with less of the danger of, say, being deeply sucked into a romantic relationship, because the “real life” boundary is so very solid.

And by aiming myself at hitRECord like this, I’m also removing some of the boundary between myself and someone I’m actually fannish about. I’m creating a small but real possibility that we might connect in some way. I even stuck his name on my tweet about the last blog post, in case he might be interested that someone was blogging about him.

So there’s this intense desire to connect with this person about whom I am very fannish.

And then there’s this intense desire to stay far away from him – to keep the boundary intact, so I can be safe.


That, ladies and gentlemen, is why I keep this blog, I think. Without writing that down somewhere, I wouldn’t have figured any of that out.

Now I’m going to hit publish.

Comment-related request

Before I do, though… a request.

I really don’t want advice on how to deal with this issue or whether or not to get involved with hitRECord on the basis of what I’ve just written. I’ll get to making that decision all on my own, and at this point, advice would just confuse me. (There’s some part of me that still believes I “have to” follow it, no matter how much it sounds like a suggestion, and I’d rather not muddy the waters just now.)

What I’d also like to avoid is judgements about the fan fiction, the erotic writing, the fannish interest in general, and… okay, I don’t want to be judged. (Or at least, if you’re going to judge me, please do it in the privacy of your own home rather than commenting on the blog.) And if anyone else shares their experiences in the comments, please don’t judge them, either. I know you guys wouldn’t, my lovely commenter-mice, but just in case someone stumbles across the blog.

That’s all for now.

Maybe I’ll see you tomorrow. I’d forgotten how amazingly useful this process is.

Pure, unadulterated art

Pure, unadulterated art

Sometimes, the internet is amazing.

Sometimes, fandom’s amazing, too.

The story goes a bit like this:

If I hadn’t been a fangirl, I’d never have met Becca. (And lots of other cool people, too. If I hadn’t been a fangirl, I’d never have discovered Havi, either, and bloody hell, would my life have been poorer for it.) But for now – if I hadn’t been a fangirl, I’d never have met Becca.

Without Becca, I probably wouldn’t have gone to see Inception, and I almost certainly wouldn’t have gone to see it twice. (Amazing film, though, Highly recommended.) And I wouldn’t have spent hours in person and via the internet, talking with her about how awesome Joseph Gordon-Levitt is.

Without all those conversations, I’d never have Googled Joseph Gordon-Levitt. And I wouldn’t have found his Twitter.

Without his Twitter, I would never have found his website.

Oh, guys.

Oh, guys.

I gave this post its title for a reason.

I’ll let Joe explain (if you’re reading in RSS, you might need to click through to the post):

In case you’re not into video… well, I’m not going to transcribe the whole thing, and I can’t explain it nearly as well as he does.

It’s a website designed for people to collaborate with each other. In multi-media. Everything from video to poetry. You upload a piece of work – they call it “releasing a record”, but it can be anything you want – and other people can look at it, download it, comment on it, recommend it… but more importantly, they can remix it and upload their new version to the site.

Taking someone’s short story and drawing pictures for it.

Taking someone’s short film and writing a score for it.

Taking someone’s script and performing it.

That’s pure art, without possessiveness, without jealousy, without having to defend this as “mine”, and it is fucking beautiful.*

I’d even go further than that. Obviously the records are art. Obviously. I’ve only dipped my toe in the water (I really have to go to bed soon) but everything I’ve looked at so far has been amazing. I’m a bit drunk on this, on the sheer excitement of it, of the passion for creation that has gone into it. But it’s not just that.

The concept is art. The concept of this. A community of people creating art together.

It hit me as I was looking at the site, that maybe the internet is full of places like this, and I just don’t know about them. I have no idea. But so many places seem to start out with good intentions and end up just being yet another place on the internet for people to argue. Maybe I just haven’t found the arguments yet, and maybe it’s 1am and I’m far too idealistic, but this place seems to sidestep that.

Yeah, of course I signed up.

Yeah, I’m trying to figure out if I’ve got anything I can upload right now. (I have one idea. It’s a poem. It’s ten years old! But I’m still proud of it.)

Yeah, this is art. This is art, and I want in.

IMMEDIATE EDIT! I just wrote a whole post about the most amazing website in the world and I didn’t link to it? It really MUST be 1am.