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Everything posted by Ainm

  1. writing influences

    Poetry influences: Susan Briante (her poem "Mother is Marxist" is one of the most brilliant things I've ever read; find it here: https://www.guernicamag.com/mother-is-marxist/); Andrea Gibson (check out "The Nutritionist"), William Evans ("Sickle"), Brenna Twohy ("Nearest Exit", which a group poem, but still), and so many other slam poets; and my friends and editors and classmates, who may not be published yet, but never fail to amaze. Fiction influences: Neil Gaiman (particularly Good Omens and American Gods), Margaret Atwood (Year of the Flood, especially), Barbara Kingsolver (Flight Behavior), and Ruth Ozeki (A Tale for the Time Being). Honestly, I think we're influenced by all the media we consume, so my influences are more or less what I read most. :P
  2. Currently reading?

    I'm currently reading Lab Girl (Hope Jahren), a memoir of a female scientist who specializes in biogeochemistry; The Gene: An Intimate History (Siddhartha Mukherjee), which is about the history of the field of genetics; In the Wake: On Blackness and Being (Christina Sharpe), which is assigned reading for my literature class, but also an incredible examination of what it means to be Black in the aftermath of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade; and The Hobbit (Tolkien), a yearly pilgrimage. There are so many others I want to read and want others to read, but I'm not sure if here is the place to enumerate them...
  3. tired girl howls, act three

    Poetry-wise, this is simply beautiful. (I could be critical and go over this word by word, if you like, but I'm not sure if that's something you want.) Subject matter-wise... I struggle for words. You are loved, mouse.
  4. NaNoWriMo

    Hey everyone! I thought it'd be nice to have an official-ish forum to share our collective NaNoWriMo struggles, excerpts of novels, etc. (I know forums of this type exist on the NaNoWriMo site, but the Slam community is different.) To start off: What are you writing? Has your novel devoured your life yet? Cheers, Ainm
  5. Characters!

    Ooo, characters. Following today's theme of sharing tidbits about my current (Sherlock fanfiction) novel... the leads: Catrin Jones - Graduate student at University College London, specializing in cryptography and cryptanalysis; did undergraduate work in mathematics and linguistics. Works in a coffee shop and hates tea, despite being from the Mumbles, Wales. Runs stairs and does aikido/judo in her spare time. Does yet not realize her own badassery. Emily Bagnall (Em) - Catrin's best friend and co-worker. Studies cello at the Royal Academy of Music. Loves a good adventure, but primarily when they occur in science fiction novels and are accompanied by blankets and tea. Guy Oliver - The everyman, if the everyman were a violent political insurrectionist with a massive criminal following. The hero of another story. Sherlock Holmes - Consulting detective extraordinaire. Damaged, delusional, and believes in a higher power - in this case, himself. John Watson - The soldier, in every sense. Currently most preoccupied with raising his daughter, Rosie. the others: Molly Hooper - Medical examiner at St. Bartholomew’s Hospital. More awkward than not, but a knowledgeable and trustworthy friend. Mycroft Holmes - The elder brother, and effectively the British government. The fate of the free world depends on his laptop. Mrs. Hudson - Landlady of 221B Baker Street. Grandmotherly, but with a sordid past and a sports car. Generally a plot device, but a good one. Greg Lestrade - Detective Inspector with Scotland Yard. Works with Sherlock out of both friendship and necessity. Sally Donovan - Detective Sergeant with Scotland Yard; Lestrade’s trusted right hand. Dislikes Sherlock and co. on principle, but is fundamentally decent person and determined to do right as she sees it. ...and definitely others, but too many to list.
  6. NaNoWriMo

    Yay! This could be maybe a serial thing, if people are interested? I mean, it's fanfiction, and I might publish it on a website specific to that someday, but it's not as though I'll ever actually publish it...
  7. NaNoWriMo

    :P I'll give you the intro, and then we can go from there. // An eventual darkness had fallen over London, grey and heavy with rain. Oblivious to the change, the professor hunched further over a stack of scribbled exams, struggling to decipher a particularly convoluted proof. The office was, at this point, lit only by the bluish glow of the computer screen, and he squinted at the paper before marking the errors in red ink. The sound of his door creaking open and of a set of footsteps inviting themselves inside was entirely surprising. “This is a bit outside of office hours,” he said, still pondering the exam question and contemplating whether he ought to be a smidge more lenient in his grading. “Then it’s a good thing I’m not here for academics.” The voice was deep, rough, traced with an almost familiar accent - English, certainly, and perhaps as northern as Lancashire. Blinking hard, trying to clear hours of electronic blur from his eyes, the professor raised his head to look at the stranger, the source of the voice. The barrel of a handgun stared back. A breathless choking sound caught in his throat, and he shifted involuntarily in his chair, away from the weapon pointing steadily at his head. Then, stupidly: “I don’t have any money.” “Oh, but you do,” the other man half-laughed. “There’s a ₤100 note in your bottom desk drawer hidden in the filing folders, and in your wallet - left back pocket, by the way - you’ll have at least another ₤50, along with two credit cards and a few Euros from the mathematics conference you attended in Belgium last month.” The professor’s jaw swung open into a stunned silence. “In other words, you’re lucky I’m not here for your money.” Finally, after a few stuttering starts, he managed to croak out, “I - you - what do you want?” “I’m here for information, Professor Roth. Are you listening?” He was too shocked to respond, and after a few seconds of anticipatory silence, the man ploughed on. “Several years ago - June of 2010, to be precise - you were visited by an agent of the British government, from Defence Intelligence. He introduced himself as a former student of yours gave you an excerpt of an encoded message, and offered you monetary compensation in exchange for a key to the code. You accepted. You couldn’t crack the code by yourself; I’m sure you knew that from the start - you specialise in fluid mechanics, not in anything remotely related to cryptography. And so you unwisely offered up to your students as an extra credit project, applied toward their end of term exam. And one of them broke the code.” “What do you want?” the professor asked shakily, for a second time. The light of his computer screen seemed as blinding as a bare bulb, as though it had been installed specifically for this interrogation. “What do you want from me?” “I want a name,” the man said. “A name, and all the details you can remember about the student who broke the code.” “I -” His mouth was dry. “I don’t remember.” He heard a light snick as the safety of the gun slid off. “You’re a smart man, professor. I’m sure you remember. In fact -” The gun barrel moved swiftly to rest against his forehead, a cold and metallic circle against sweating skin. “I’m certain you know that you right now, and that you’re just unwilling to tell me. Maybe you think you’re protecting someone, that there’s someone you can save by staying silence. The only life you should be worrying about is your own, professor. I won’t hesitate to pull this trigger, and your death won’t stop me from finding the student.” There was silence. “I’m not a patient man, Professor Roth.” “Catrin,” he whispered, and a wave of guilt rolled through his stomach. He swallowed hard. “Her name is Catrin. Catrin Jones.”
  8. NaNoWriMo

    Yay! I give you a choice of (a) the intro, because this story makes very little sense without context; (b) an original character interacting with canonical characters; or (c) two amusing original characters. (I honestly don't know which is best.) :)
  9. NaNoWriMo

    That's fantastic, honestly. :P I'm not exactly doing NaNoWriMo: I'm giving myself two months instead of one to allow myself occasionally prioritize schoolwork/other life things. Also, I'm not expecting to finish the novel in 50,000 words, so it may take longer than said two months to complete. Does that still count? At any rate, I'm writing a Sherlock-based fanfiction. Currently, I've got the intricacies of the foreseeable plot pretty much worked out; I just need time to write. (8,000 words and counting!) Will gladly post excerpts if there's any interest.
  10. I'd never seen you mad before

    Wow, this line. Well done. Also, you are loved and strong, and I hope you can continue to rage against this broken system.
  11. chapbooks!

    I used a three-hole pamphlet stitch (a fancy term that I just learned today), which seems to be simplest. A good tutorial for that can be found on page two of this document: https://www.loc.gov/preservation/resources/educational/bookarts/pamphlet.pdf . Alternatively, if you want to get fancy, there's a couple of good tutorials here, including how to print: https://www.pw.org/content/diy_how_to_make_and_bind_your_own_chapbook . (Printers are the natural enemy of poets and will always thwart your plans.) Pro-tip: Make a mock-up copy first. Print on paper you don't care about, and go through and catch all the mistakes (including the inevitable upside down page). Practice binding on this copy. Then go do the real thing. Bonus pro-tip: Have an editor. You'll need someone to give you sound feedback on your poems, as well as to proofread. (Plus, it's sometimes fun to have someone else make art for your chapbook cover based on their interpretation of your poems, not your own.) Um... I'm sure more tips and hints will come to me. Are there specific things you have questions about?
  12. chapbooks!

    ...I guess that was more than a few. Hope that's helpful/interesting to y'all! (Also, I am excited to talk about chapbooks - any part of the process - any time.)
  13. chapbooks!

    And... this one's mine. I used an old newspaper page picture, because I generally scribble my poetry in the margins of things that aren't meant to be written on. (Hence the title of "margins".)
  14. chapbooks!

    Again, I don't know as much about how this one was made, but I love the graphic design.
  15. chapbooks!

    This one used different old anatomical heart drawing for the cover and is printed on handmade paper.
  16. chapbooks!

    Another chapbook. I don't know as much about the cover of this one, but it's cool.
  17. chapbooks!

    This one is a chapbook that I helped produce; the orange drawn on the cover was done by me.
  18. chapbooks!

    So this is going to a multipost sort of thing, since I want to talk a bit about how the outside of each chapbook was done. (All names are covered to protect my classmates' identities and insides of the books will not be shown since their poetry is not mine to publish.) The cover of this chapbook was done with a leftover woodblock print from a friend of the author. The chapbook is hand-bound.
  19. bug log/community q&a

    @Autumn I think the search function is broken... when I search for old material that I know exists (Ex: "When Aliens Invade" by Omnictionarian96), nothing comes up. Help?
  20. chapbooks!

    Dammit, my link didn't work. See chapbook history here: http://web.mit.edu/21h.418/www/nhausman/chap1.html
  21. chapbooks!

    Okay, chapbooks. Chapbooks are an incredibly cool form of low-cost publishing. Chapbook history here. Today, chapbooks can be collections of your best work, collections of work done within a certain time period of your life, collections done on a theme, etc., but they're generally small (think 10-20ish poems), produced in small quantities (I produced 50 of mine), and made with care (nice paper, hand bound, really cool covers, the works). [Side note: I honestly think my chapbook is cooler in the physical version because of these things.] At any rate, chapbooks are a really incredible medium, and I highly recommend this project. Also, a class that I took in college (Advanced Poetry Workshop) talked a lot about chapbooks, and then each of my classmates and I produced a chapbook of our own at the end of the class. If anyone wants me to post pictures of cool examples of chapbooks from aforementioned class, let me know!
  22. Ainm's chapbook!

    Hey everyone! If you remember from the old website, I offered to post my year-old (...wait - maybe it's two-year-old) chapbook. Fortunately, we now have the (glitchy) technology to make this a reality. Thus, enclosed is the chapbook. Some of the poems might look familiar - they're most of what I've been posting on here of late - but I promise I'll write you something new soon. Enjoy! Cheers, Ainm margins (Ainm's chapbook).pdf
  23. sunspot

    Lovely imagery in this! I would love to a version of this that includes something about the astrophysics of sunspots, especially since the internet informs me that sunspots are "caused by concentrations of magnetic field flux that inhibit convection" and "usually appear in pairs of opposite magnetic polarity" (Wikipedia). But perhaps I'm just being a nerd. That is a definite possibility. :P
  24. A letter to wishgranters

    I really feel this. Best of luck in your quest for wellness!
  25. every particle wave moving at the speed of light each instant passes into a calculus of reality future a sum of the present individual thread of a tapestry torn by schrodinger’s cat and nonexistence is mewling inside a paper bag relative only to perception we are sliding backward as time streams forward