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Persona not very bloody grata

Good evening. Or good morning. Fuctifino. The 3.30am shifts are doing a number on my head.

Yesterday, my overlords, through the medium of the secretary, Lucy [the innocent party], called up at 10 bloody am to find out whether I would work a shift because my boss was ill.

I evinced some disappointment [trans: swore somewhat] at being woken up five hours after I had gone to bed and remarked that the man who is meant to be the boss's deputy was in working anyway, I was knackered, and the last four times I was asked to cover I did, so I'd like to take my day off.

So anyway, most of them were okay about it but according to one, I'm not a team player, which amused me mightily. I swear to God, I was expecting someone to squawk "don't you know there's a war on?"

I could have rolled my eyes more but I feared I might strain something. *g*

37 days until I move jobs. Tra-la-laaa! 37 days until I get more money for less work! Up yours! [/childish]

In other news, in Monday, the lovely, lovely building society sent me a cheque for 300 quid, which was my refund for the fees and basic survey, so I thought, wahey, I will buy a DVD player to go with my splendid new TV (my TV and video cost more than all the rest of the furniture I have bought for the house thus far. I think that says all you need to know *g*)

On Tuesday the effing boiler broke down. The cost of repairing it is 294 quid.

Verily, the lord giveth and the lord taketh away

So yesterday, on my NAFFING DAY OFF, I went out and bought sensible things like curtains and storage boxes and *cough*someRobinofSherwoodvideos*cough* and had a generally pleasant day. While NOT BEING AT WORK. It was lovely.

Oh, and Ropo, C, I have another source of evil house crack: Channel 4 have this show called Property Ladder in which some poor sap buys a house to do up for a profit and then is roundly mocked for his design decisions before they take him in hand and make him do it properly. I recommend it muchly, if it is lurking anywhere on your cable channels.

I've nearly caught up on the vast amount of list email I accumulated over the weekend, and it turned up some of the usual fanfic horrors, commentary upon which is hidden for fear of harshing someone's mellow *g*

* * *

Let me speak for a moment about fanfic. Specifically -- awards

[A chorus of 'Oh bugger, do you have to' arises from the literally ... ones... of people who could be reading this]

Yes. For it is awards season again and it gives me great pleasure to tell all of you who have despaired of the pissing, moaning, ranting by borderline personalities and general ill-will that attends the Spooky awards each year, that no fandom is immune.

Not even West Wing, which has hitherto been rather sweet and amiable (sometimes self-congratulatorily so)

This is about the Jeds. I didn't vote because I was moving house at the time they were on. Also, the laziness.

[And, having heard via third-hand sources that someone had a pop in my general direction on this topic last year, I'm feeling uninclined to like the process and the hostility which ensues, because really, who has the energy to cheat in bloody fanfic awards, which are meant to be just meaningless fun, and I'd better stop now because that's a whole 'nother rant...]

I read a lot of West Wing fanfic for various reasons and, as with most fandoms, 90 per cent of it is ill-thought out, unoriginal shippy shite that wouldn't know good characterisation if it ended up clog-dancing naked on Tooting Broadway, humming 'Brothers In Arms'.

But when it's good -- oh, my dear sweet Lord -- West Wing fanfic is good

It's just that, given the weird reluctance on the parts of most people to write about the *stuff of the show*, which is politics, that leaves character/romance pieces, minor character illuminations or futurefic (and how freudian is it that I wrote futurefuck at first?).

[Or else those bizarro adventureworld things in which Josh decides to climb Mount Everest with Sam and has to be rescued by Donna, as all three banter with sherpas, or else CJ is taken prisoner by a master criminal only to be rescued by a gun-totin' Leo and Toby. They're just ... peculiar. (I think I strained my tact muscle with that last sentence, so I shall press on...) ]

Unlike the usual stuff of fanfic, such as XF, the Buffyverse or the various Treks, not everything can happen. WW is like Jane Austen's piece of scrimshaw.

This means that unless you tackle political stuff well (and I can count on my fingers the number of people who have done that) or explore either a post-ep situation or a then you are going to be covering well-trodden ground, so you'd better capture the characters in an interesting way.

I think the announcement of the Jed awards was out for maybe five minutes before the first snarky remark dropped about the people who ran the awards being nominated in them, and how they should have stepped down.

The thing is, the people who organised the awards were the people who are the best in the field, who have the most enthusiasm and imagination. They're the people who write challenging characterisations and intriguing situations. Hell, they're the people who can write. If we're being brutally honest (and oops, I am) if you took them out of the running, they'd be pretty bloody pathetic awards.

It would be like having a soccer World Cup without Germany, Italy, Brazil and Argentina: yes, it's possible that another team could win, even with the 'big names' in the competition, but what sort of victory would it be if you couldn't say you'd competed against the best?

Having scanned the results, I might have a few quibbles and alterations: putting the third-placed fic first, bringing in a couple of my favourites and booting out a few that I liked less, promoting some that I loved but which may have been a little dry/unshippy for some readers (and if I ruled the universe, P.S. Burton's The Game Everywhere and Scott Fenstermaker's Retaliation would be mandatory reading)

But the list as it is would stand as the best of WW fic and would have been voted for in any objective, fully independent system of polling.

The woman who brought it up (a poster of decided and sometimes peculiar opinions) was quick to get annoyed by the outraged response her post got, which amused me because I thought it was a brilliant example of the genre -- classic passive-aggressive 'maybe it's just me, but...' opinion-spouting masquerading as concern for the "community", coupled with a deliciously backhanded snark-disguised-as-compliment at the end. I almost admired it. (Is it a character flaw to almost admire machiavellian postings? Probably)

However, until she gets off her bad-tempered arse and organises her own awards, she should shut her gob.

* * *



( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 18th, 2001 06:52 pm (UTC)
You are the bestest.

Also, I own two Duran Duran CDs. As Courtney Love says: "The best band you won't admit you listened to."

--m., who's all about the minor character illuminations, baby
Oct. 19th, 2001 01:04 pm (UTC)
I was shocked that The Game Everywhere wasn't even *in* the Political Story category in the first round of noms. Personally, I think it's the best non-humor WW fic I've read. (Then why didn't I nominate it myself? Because I'm a lazy f*ck, and I just assumed that someone else would go through the hassle of pasting it into that little form, since the only web link to it disappeared when YMMV did.)

I doubt P.S. is losing any sleep over it, though -- she's got bigger fish to fry. Who knows, she may even have told Ellen not accept nominations for it.

And people keep teasing me with bizarro adventureworld fanfic scenarios, but then they never tell me where to find them!!! My own personal badfic weakness is lurid, outlandish AUs. If there's Sherpas, I want 'em.
Oct. 19th, 2001 01:31 pm (UTC)
I do hear that about P.S.

I thought The Game Everywhere was excellent. It gave me that same odd, sickened but fascinated feeling as I had when I read that Gourevitch book about Rwanda.

(that may have come out wrong, because I mean that in a very good way *g*)

However, it's still on the 'net, for a while at least: YMMV got TOSed and had to move.


Alas, I made up the sherpas. And the only truly AU fic I've seen in WW was the civil war one.

The best place for whacked out AUs remains XF.
Oct. 21st, 2001 09:32 am (UTC)
There is apparently this weirdo medieval *Sports Night* fic (30-odd chapters and still going), and one sf everybody-in-black-leather one. I am almost tempted to read them, just to see what the fuck is going on.
Oct. 21st, 2001 01:13 pm (UTC)
It scares me that you know this
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )