laliandra: (Default)
Please, have a cake. 

I'm [livejournal.com profile] laliandra , mostly shortened to Lal. I'm prone to rambling, spontaneous singing, sarcasm and absent-mindedness. I wish I could carry the whole of XKCD round with me to sum up my life. I would kind of like to be a con woman or a Blue Peter presenter when I grow up.

I have a livejournal account that I live at, a Twitter account (now locked but feel free to add me) that I mostly use to flail at people and an AO3 account that I love.

I write fanfiction and my Master List is under the cut. I feel so accomplished, you have no idea. This is literally the most organised thing in my entire life.

Um, my feeling about friending is, essentially, YAY FRIENDS \o/

Please, do friend me, and then leave me a comment so I know who you are and so we can get to know each other. This is the place to ask any questions that you might have or say hi or point out any terrible typos or bad Americanisms or general fails I have made in my fics. Seriously, it takes a village, you're welcome to join mine.

MASTER LIST! )

More About The Author :D

Due a nomadic childhood I have a weird nowhere accent that confuses people. Once upon a time I was a student of French and History and I still love to talk languages (moods! Loan words! translation loss!) and how the people of the past are not the Other but just us, then. I recommend books both personally and professionally and inhabit a tiny London flat with my tiny girlfriend and a large stuffed octopus.
[livejournal.com profile] bookdeyada_club[livejournal.com profile] marmalade_fish

I love a lot of fandoms and a lot of things that I am not actively fanish about but would love to ramble and squee with you about!

So, yes, anything you want to know, just ask! Here are some suggestions which I have shamelessly stolen from other posts. Top Fives! Random Facts about one of my Fics (like DVD extras only ramblier)! The Inside The Actor's Studio Quiz! Or anything you like.
laliandra: (sweetlooking brazilian)
I did mean to make this entry Some Time ago but, ugh, you guys, I'm still pretty sick. I got sick almost exactly on the stroke of midnight (I'm not kidding, I stood up to sing Auld Lang Syne, sneezed and felt a little wobbly) and have only just come out the other side.

And by that I mean, have been coughing myself to death and leaving people completely ridiculous comments that make less than no sense. With .gifs. And because my friends are, you know, my friends, I am now engaged in TWO gif wars. Obviously.

Anyway, I also left for various Christmas type celebrations on the 16th of December, which I hope goes some way to explaining the amount of LJ radio silence. And LJ kind of sucks these days. But yes, I went and had four days in a tiny room with [livejournal.com profile] moogle62 and it was GLORIOUS. I think we had about 20 hours sleep total, there was a lot of time spent in pyjamas, some very dignified feels watching TSN vids at 3am that we had to talk to some ice cream about, some even more dignified feels about Sherlock Holmes 2 (IN PUBLIC GOOD LORD) and her flatmate describing me as "your *lowers voice* *makes air quotes* friend".

So all around a triumph, really.

And then we met up with some beloved marmfish for merriment and tube debacles and ice skating. Last year [livejournal.com profile] hanelissar and I spent the whole session hands firmly clasped in each others, with much clutching and spinning and delighting in each safe trip round the ice. When we got back onto dry land the rest of the group declared us married. This year I spent more time than seems, um, socially acceptably telling Moog and [livejournal.com profile] altogetherisi to just get their legs further apart, jeez.

And then home to the Isle of Man, which ended up being, to quote Moog, LIKE THE ISLAND ON LOST ONLY INSTEAD OF ACCUMULATING TERRIFYINGLY ATTRACTIVE PEOPLE AND ALSO POLAR BEARS IT JUST ATTRACTS THE WTFUCKERY/INTENSE EMOTIONAL REVELATIONS. So we'll just, move right along with that, then.

And then back to see the boy and his parents, only he got sick, then I got sick, and here we are! Oh, no, only I also recorded three episodes of [livejournal.com profile] podramble (more on that later) and wrote my Yuletide fic.

Not If, Only or Even, But Always. And no, I'm still not sure if all those commas are right.

It was for the movie Zombieland, a witty, charming movie which I loved more than I ever expected to, and featuring some of my very favourite faces. In a turn of events to surprise no one, I have a number of feelings about kickass conlady heroines and their sisters and their twitchy, adorkable boyfriends.

Um, if I haven't posted the Fandom Snowflake thing by the end of tomorrow, someone yell at me?

Happy New Year, my dearest flist!

How the devil are you?
laliandra: (sweetlooking brazilian)
I have absolutely no idea how that happened.

Well, I mean, I do. I vaguely think about things I want to post and then I get on the internet and forget all about it. I also planned to have finished some of the many and terrible WIPs I have on the go right now, but that, er, hasn't happened either? And then I just think of more things I want to write and I think my brain just sort of gets log-jammed with ideas.

Anyway, in the past month I have tweeted a lot, liked a lot of things on tumblr, finally got myself a TSN icon, totally made "wardo" as a verb happen, played through all three Jojo's Fashion Show games, had the sleep schedule of a mad insomniac and generally failed about the house in my socks and misbuttoned pyjamas.

I have had some on and off temp work, sigh. It's so depressing. The other week I worked for six days, standing up for pretty much eight hours straight every day, and in the end, I scraped past earning £200 *gets back under quilt and doesn't come out*

I also went to a wedding in Wales! It was... Are you going to call me crazy if I say it was very wedding-y? It was like the show-home of weddings. Nat's cousin is a professional cricket player and all of his friends are sportsmen and they all have very WAG parters and it was very... Wedding-y. Also I accidentally flashed my arse to a bunch of people but that's a story for another day.

Oh! Also I watched all of Band of Brothers and wept into my gchat window at [livejournal.com profile] daisysusan and there were pretty boys covered in dirt and heartbreak and it was amaaaaazing.

I've been trying to write this entry for like, five hours, and I'm being terrible at it, so, like, ask me things in the comments or whatever. How have you beeeeeeeen?

To make up for it, here is a masterful characterful study of Mr Rochester, by [livejournal.com profile] laliandra and [livejournal.com profile] moogle62

ps no that is not my crazy wife in the attic shhh just come )
laliandra: (blackdeyada)
Oh man, I am so tired at the moment, and my best girl from school is here, and so I'm totally relying on Past!Lal having achieved things to put any substance at all into this post.

Luckily Past!Lal hasn't been too bad. At least she took some pictures to pretty up the place. And my friends continue to have opinions worth chronicling. Which is handy.

So! I went down to my boyfriend's parents house for a massive family party. After much preparation (during which Nat and I had the most middle-class argument ever. It was about bunting.) many friends of the family and neighbours and extended family descended on the house.

Every second conversation I had, summed up.

Me: Yes, I'm Nat's girlfriend.

Party Guest: OH! When are you getting married.

Me: *thinks* fuck RIGHT off I am TWENTY FOUR YEARS OLD.

Me: *actually says* You should ask (boyfriend's older brother) and (girlfriend)! *forced laugh*

I also met a girl who sat down by me and declared "I love this cake. I would marry this cake. I would make love to this cake." So apparently my willingness to discuss frosting sex is something even strangers can sense. Pictures! Party balloons, party tent, party dress and shoes.


Me: *posts (different) picture of self in dress to Twitter*
Twitter: CONGRATS ON THE BOOBS!
Me: *is very unsurprised*
Then on the following Monday I met my wonderful marmfish loves [livejournal.com profile] hanelissar, [livejournal.com profile] playwithfyr, [livejournal.com profile] hanelissarand [livejournal.com profile] altogetherisifor a day of geeky frolics in London Town. We had the best time. We went to see Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows at the IMAX in exciting 3D, picnicked outside of Foyles and left TDL bookmarks about the place.

And then we went to see the preview screening of Let's Kill Hitler! SO MUCH EXCITEMENT, OMG.I managed to take one, very faily picture on my phone but oh, wow, you guys, I was SO CLOSE to the front it was AMAZING.


You can read my recounting of this marvellous event at my tumblr. And if you want to talk about the episode, I can finally do that! YESSS. Not spoiling people has been really hard.

Still very conflicted about Steven Moffat. For those of you playing along at home!

The very next day, having got the bus back from London, which takes 6 hours and meant I fell into bed at 6am, I had a [livejournal.com profile] hanelissar to stay. She was good to me in my times of sleep deprivation, and we only wept on each other about our Big Bangs a very little bit. A forest for my pines etcetc. Also there was baking, as per. We made all manner of chocolate chip cookies. Pony cookies! Ship cookies!

For his birthday Nat got tickets to Sunday at Leeds Festival, hurrah. It. Was. Awesome. I mean, it was cold. But awesome. I got to see the National live, which I've wanted to do for an age, and I got to see my best friend Lil be in charge of lighting a whole stage, and go stand with her in the technical area which makes you feel all fancy. She is a fabulous lady doing fabulous things in a completely male dominated industry and I couldn't be prouder.

And at the end of the night we saw Pulp and it was the perfect festival experience, thousands upon thousands of people dancing and singing and yelling lyrics into the night.

LEEDS! MUD! SUNSETS! MUSIC!

In the morning I discovered that I'd sent Moog an email at 2am. I do not remember typing this email, but my inbox suggests otherwise. In it, among other, crazier things (and by that I mean all caps versions of the ridiculous AUs that we are not writing, oh no, that would be ridiculous, what, why are you looking at us like that), I continued a conversation that had started a week or so ago on Twitter.
[livejournal.com profile] playwithfyr
laliandra: (bookworm)
So. Yes. My lovely exciting new job? Didn't work out. I've already talked a lot about it on twitter and I'm not sure I want to go into it again but. Yeah. It sucks and it makes me sad to think about how frickin' happy and hopeful I was.

But, as ever, my internet family are being amazing. I am, according to the notes attached to the various cards, notes, pictures and postcards I've received "in the process of getting a group hug from the internet. If it doesn't make sense yet, stand by."



YOU GUYS FOR SERIOUS I CANNOT EVEN. They are all so beautiful and HANDMADE and wonderful, oh my god. Thank you so, so much *takes a breath* [livejournal.com profile] vandulocity  [livejournal.com profile] kaiserkuchen [livejournal.com profile] miabee023  [livejournal.com profile] sarkysnarky  [livejournal.com profile] khasael [livejournal.com profile] pigrescuer  [livejournal.com profile] branquignole  [livejournal.com profile] hanelissar  [livejournal.com profile] moogle62 [livejournal.com profile] playwithfyr  and the rest to come. I have never been so sad that there's no post on Sundays. I don't know who the mastermind(s) behind the project but oh my god, thank you and I like how it looks like you are quoting me. I love it when you quote me! #mystery #excitement #bears

In other excellent news the fic that I produced for [livejournal.com profile] pod_together  with the fabulous [livejournal.com profile] nielrian  is up on the AO3! Hurray! It is a Kurt/Blaine summer job fluff extravaganza called Haven't Let You Out Since I Let You In and you can all see what I meant when I said my sunburn was karma. And also experience the wonder that is N's reading, her Kurt voice is so perfect, y'all, I cannot even. PERFECT. I have listened to her say "cliché" over and over. I should probably post it places to be completist but I am so laaaaazy today.

Also I saw Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows P2 at the midnight showing and it was very satisfying and upsetting and I JUST HAVE A LOT OF FEELINGS ABOUT HARRY POTTER. It really makes me want to write HP fic again. Maybe we should have "Fandom Will Always Be There To Welcome You Home" fic writing, reading, reccing fest or something.

So, yes, this is mostly an entry of things that I will have more to say about later. Whatever. It's like, 2am here and I need to have achieved something today apart from finally convincing my boyfriend to just download the first season of the West Wing so that we can watch it. He's been holding out for buying the DVDs for <i>years</i>. We are late to the party, sure, but oh, what a party!
laliandra: (citygirl)
This weekend Nat and I went to that there Londontown to catch up with old friends aplenty. There was a concerning few days midweek when the snow got so bad that I got sent home from work and sat in the car with a co-worker (my favourite co-worker and not just because she agreed to drive me most of the way home) and we couldn't see anything beyond the front of the car bonnet. Which was a little alarming, to say the least!

So we drove down as far as Luton and stayed in a Travelodge. It was not exactly the most glamorous night of our lives.

On Saturday we made it safely to Belle's house in the Tropics (if by the tropics you mean Middlesex and I do) where there no snow. No snow at all! Our tiny minds were blown... Then we all ventured into London to sample the delights of the food market on the South Bank. We shamelessly exploited all the free samples on offer. It appears that student living leaves its mark. The plan had been to wander the German Market but we spent a lot of time mocking the extremely poor "Snow Globe Experience" and then it rained a lot so what we actually did was go to (HUT THING) and drink very sweet mulled wine. I was meeting my other two housemates from university, Sal and Wren, and their boyfriends, and it was great. I miss my girls a lot.

Then we planned to go to Covent Garden but it was raining and we got distracted by the giant ship in a bottle on the Forth Plinth, so what we actually did was go to the pub. Are you noticing a pattern here? We were forced into having extremely grown up conversations about our jobs (Belle teaches English as a second language, Wren works for the Historical Royal Palaces Society and Sal for a children's charity. My friends are vastly more impressive than me) and our housing situation and the cost of travel and the weather.

Then when we were done with that we got talking about books, which always happens and had about a half hour discussion about YA and how The Book Thief is amazing and made me and Sal bawl our eyes out. Apparently telling people this does not make them want to read the book. But you should! Because it's really good! We were standing in the corner of the pub and the whole thing became kind of animated because we all care a lot about books and the Australians sitting at the table next to us clearly thought that we were all crazy and/or some kind of in pub entertainment.

Me: But once you get past the genocide! It's actually very uplifting!

Belle: The whole thing made me want to ring my brother and yell at him and then *makes sweeping gesture* I don't know, tell him he's awesome.

Sal: Where was all this teen literature when I was a teenager? 14 year old me is PISSED OFF.

Me: Oh, you know Nat doesn't read fiction.
Wren: (Her boyfriend) neither.
The four of us: *turn as one and tut at the boyfriends*

We went out for dinner and while we were in the bar waiting I got a text update from twitter in which [livejournal.com profile] moleskinned quoted some fic and I got these terrible snorting giggles.

Everyone: What, Lal, what?
Me: Er. You wouldn't, it's a, never mind. Internet joke.
Wren: It's going to be about porn, isn't it?
Belle and Sal: *nod sagely*
Sal's boyfriend who has not spent a lot of time with us as a group: *gives Sal a 'they seemed like such nice girls' look*

Sunday was a particularly lovely day that we spent on the canal boat that Wren lives on with her boyfriend. It's like a real house all condensed down into a teeny tiny floating space, which Wren has also managed to make stylish and lovely with cushions and baubles and plants. We were talking about how Wren is very good at growing things.

Wren's Boyfriend: I won the longest chilli competition at work.
Me: *tries not to laugh*
Sal: *starts to giggle*
Me: *catches Sal's eye*
Me, Sal, Belle and Wren: *all laugh at once*
All the boys: *look confused*

Then we took the boat out down the Thames. It was a gorgeous day and we made it to Hampton Court Palace. AKA Wren's office. Like I said, vastly cooler than me.

Wren gave us her tour and I added ridiculous but nonetheless true facts about the Tudors and may have suggested that Henry VIII was kind of foxy. You know. In his day.

Then we drove the boat back and made mulled wine. It's very important that you get those steps in the right order.

The next day I went to meet the extremely marvellous [livejournal.com profile] hanelissar and [livejournal.com profile] altogetherisi for mooching and Harry Potter watching. While Hannah and I were waiting in Waterloo for Isi we went to WH Smith and rearranged their children and young adult section so that all the copies of Hush, Hush and Crescendo were covered by other books.

Further Fabulous Adventures (because this entry is already flist killingly long) )

The whole thing has left me in a far superior mood for the whole week. Clearly all I needed was to spend some time with people who I can be myself with. Which seems to mostly involve making all bystanders stop in their conversations, but that's practically a tradition in my family.

Have you all had good weeks/weekends? Ready for Christmas (ahahahaha I am so not, before you ask)
laliandra: (aspiration)
Oh, god, I haven't posted in forever and a day. Or, like, three weeks but whatever. The internet moves at the speed of light and all.

So, I suspect that y'all suspect me of having achieving great and marvellous things in my absence from your flists.

This is sadly not the case.

Sorry.

My boyfriend Nat has been working away, many miles away for the last month, only home at the weekends. So I've been Home Alone. I meant to get a lot of stuff done, mostly writing and maybe some recording. But mainly what I did was mope around the house, watching a lot of crap TV and eating biscuits. Sulkily.

I also went to work. Work sucks, I know, right? It's reached a stage with my co-workers which feels very Assimilate or Die. Like, I have next to nothing in common with any of them, and they are not interested in most of the things I am passionate about and. I can either keep myslef to myself and listen to the music that I like and podfic. Or I can feign an interest in things I really don't care about (can I fake it about fake tan?) and stop myself making sarcastic comments (I swear, I don't mean it badly, it's my sense of humour)  and using complicated words (which Karen [who thought that euthanasia was a country] accused me of doing to take the piss). Stop being the proper version of myself. I don't know. I think I've got so used to being with people like, well, like you guys. Who send me tweets supporting my choice to grin like an idiot while I rewatch clips of Glee on the train and who use words like, "proselytize" and who blame me and &hearts me and squee about sexy revelations with me and just GET ME. 

ANYWAY. Enough of my angstface/FANDOMADORATION. Seriously though. You guys. <3.

Let us focus on what I actually have achieved...

I made my Master List/ Introduction Post! VICTORY IS MINE AND IT COMES IN DELICIOUSLY LISTY FORM. It took me an upsettingly long time because livejournal hates my face and also my attempts at html. Oh, so very much html. So, new friends, old friends, lurkers, please feel free to go comment and ask anything you would like to (I have included suggestions but have no doubt you'll think of something much more awesome) or just marvel at the amount of of RPF I seem to have ended up writing \o?

I read Who Fears Death for bookdeyada and it was amazing and set in Africa and full of fabulous female characters and non Western mythology and, ugh, I loved it so much. I love it when you get to the end of a good book and you just feel this really bone deep feeling of satisfaction, you know? Shoe joy is all glitter shiny and instant but book joy is real fulfilment.

I recorded myself playing television theme tunes on the kazoo and singing show tunes for various people, thus proving that I probably shouldn't be left on my own for long periods of time.

I broke my laptop charger dancing to My Chemical Romance but now have a new, shiny one that actually works properly and not just in one special position which takes forever to find. My precious laptop, I have missed you so! *pets, gently* 

I signed up for Muskrat Jamboree which is a very very awesome fandom convention. In America. So, yeah. I AM GOING TO AMERICA and I am going to stay with [livejournal.com profile] brimtoast in New York and meet [livejournal.com profile] shiningartifact and [livejournal.com profile] novembersmith and [livejournal.com profile] swiiftly in Boston and we are going to a FANDOM CONVENTION and OMG I AM SO EXCITED CAN YOU TELL?!?! So, if you are in the New York or Boston area around the end of March/start of April we should totally meet up and have coffee or something. I plan on riding the A train and charming people with my accent!

I have been around on other parts of the internet, even though I have been a terrible poster. I have been on twitter, like, all the fricking time. I live on Twitter. How did I survive work without Twitter? I have a service that allows me to use Twitter like a text message, where I just write out the message and send it to a number, which I find extremely cool. I get to text people all over the  world for free! So I was discussing the Glee version of Teenage Dream as sung by AVPM's Darren Criss with [livejournal.com profile] kaiserkuchen  and she made an excellent point and so I replied

Yes, yes eye fucking, exactly \O/

You may notice the distinct lack of an @ at the beginning of that tweet (incidentally have I mentioned that I hate almost all the words associated with Twitter? Tweeting *shudders*) so of course it or rather Yes, yes eye fucking, exactly \O/
 showed up on EVERYONE's feed. There was some confusion, but mostly in a "Oh, Lal, what is it this time?" kind of way. Which I appreciated. I feel it is a fairly accurate summary of my feelings on the subject anyway. It is extra amusing to me because just a few days I had been telling Kaz that it is basically my greatest fear that one day I will accidentally text Twitter instead of my boyfriend... I mean, going on what most of our conversations are like it will be something about the weather or poorly spelled shop signs but YOU NEVER KNOW. 

I wrote a teeny tiny sequel to my Inception subway!AU fic, (AKA the fic of nothing but crosswords and snarkary, or My Subconscious Loves You, [livejournal.com profile] brimtoast) for [livejournal.com profile] bookshop 's fluff meme. I am well, well aware that this is NOT what I am supposed to be writing, but anyway, I did. This is because I am powerless to resist the lure of being ordered to write something delightful and schmoopy and because the fluff meme is like a big fuzzy blanket that I can wrap myself in after a particularly crappy day and because I wanted to do something nice for many reasons but mainly, as I said to C,  because sometimes people in fandom are dicks. There is a little more further down the thread, by the way, so scroll down if you feel your sugar levels can take it...

I also went dancing a lot, which remains awesome. We are doing a samba routine at a Carnaval club night in December and my friend is trying to persuade us all to wear bikinis. I will be on Team More Than Bikinis, Oh Please, For The Love Of God, but I suspect my team will not win. Possibly we need a snappier name. 

And you guys? How have you been? Didja miss me?! 
laliandra: (history)
This is such a self indulgent post, really, but my brain feels all implodey. I'm still getting over a throat infection and I slept on my friend's floor last night, which is the first bit on context you need. And Leeds train station was covered in posters for the Hush Hush sequel (the book that [livejournal.com profile] altogetherisi and I find more upsetting than Twilight. Really. What Aja (and awesome linkees) said, only with considerably more swearing. My hatred is endless) which made me full of violent thoughts. All in all, everything is a bit strange and vague with sleep and rage right now.

Mostly, though, my brain is being eaten alive by it being all WIPs, all the time...

So, this is what the inside of my head looks like...

Inception (Just in case you hadn't worked out that this fandom has eaten my brain or were worrying about running out of fic *g*)
Oh, so very many (dangerous) ideas )




*cries* Steampunk AI AU which has been a WIP for *mumblemumble* months. Years. Lifetimes.
I can practically write this part from memory )

500 words of Summer fics
Yes, yes, I know, not summer anymore )

Sigh. And those are only the ones that have a googledoc of their very own. I hope y'all are doing well! Feel free to commiserate or just say hi or whatever. It's all groovy <3

laliandra: (write)
The thing is...

Well. The thing is...

Inception fandom is so smart and I have so many ideas and yet. Obviously the thing I ended up actually finishing was a really ridiculous and so-cute-it's-cutesy AU. Mostly about crosswords.

Y'all, my facepalm is so epic it can probably be seen FROM SPACE.

Anyway, I have to learn to love my crazy baby from a one night stand (I wrote it from 11pm to 1.30am) and also posting it here means that I actually get to fix the many, many errors that I found in it after I posted. It turns out that my shame over the sheer ridiculousness of the "plot" is as nothing compared to the shame of having mispelled "Dow Jones". Also this is the first fic I've finished in, er, eight months? Which is not to say I haven't been starting things. I have at least 100,000 words of starts. So, finishing something is good. Right?! And I do actually of enjoy unabashed cute while being :/ about it. Life is hard for a cynical romantic, okay?

Anyway! I think that is enough discussion of my Issues and massive amounts of pretentiousness. If you would still like to read this fic, you can do so under the cut or at the AO3

Say I'm The Only Bee In Your Bonnet )


(They Might Be Giants ~rock so hard, btw)
laliandra: (blackdeyada)
You guys.

YOU GUYS!

I HAVE INTERNET AGAIN.

YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY!

We have broadband and cable TV and a landline and I installed them all myself.

AND I HAVE INTERNET FOR THE FIRST TIME IN A MONTH.

A MONTH.

YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS.

BRING HATS AND AWESOME GIFS/PICS, I AM OFF TO DOWNLOAD TV SHOWS. LET'S CELEBRATE!!!


So how are y'all? :D
laliandra: (campfire)
Remember how last time I posted I mentioned that I was excited for [livejournal.com profile] novembersmith 's jacket (no, that joke will never get old to me, why do you ask?) Big Bang EPIC fic?

Well, it is posted and its fabulousness released upon the world.

"The Anatomy of a Fall" is the story of a boy and the boy he meets in the woods. It's about creepy small towns in America. It's about love and loss and growing up. It's incredible.

So you should all go read it right now.

It is a bandom AU, but you don't need to know the fandom to love it, trust me. I love it because it ticks so many of my absolute story loves.

There is adorable banter! Realistically written teenagers! Amazing group interactions! Jokes! Beautiful, atmospheric language (including some stunning metaphors, my not so secret favourite thing ever)! NERD JOKES! A slow build love story! Suspense! Mythology! Hot make outs! People being good at stuff! BANTER!

Also, I think I have to say something about the narrative voice. It's just so.. so clear, you know? As someone who tries this writing lark now and then, let me tell you that getting your POV voice so spot on all the way through is near on impossible. And this fic pulls it off with aplomb and darlingness, in what is essentially a novel. Gerard is defiant and grouchy and geeky and unthinkingly sweet and unknowingly brave. I love him, and marvel at Lauren's mad skillz.

Seriously. Read it.

Obviously y'all know that that the author is a dear, dear friend of mine, but let me assure you that this in no way cheapens this heart felt rec. It just means that I can tell you that I know that she has worked long and hard on this fic, like, years long. That she has panicked that no one will like it (because we are neurotic creatures, us writers!). That I have lucked out with being friends with her, clearly!

Anyway, my contribution has mostly been of the ridiculous nature, and so my present to novemberlauren is err,
This? )
The two ahem, works have literally nothing in common in terms of quality and outlook! This is just my own craziness. Sorry, Lauren! ILU!

laliandra: (aspiration)
I don't think I've mentioned this before, but I've been volunteering in a charity shop. I did it before I had my previous job, and I've been back for about a month. It's fairly awesome.

For those of you who don't know, a charity shop is one that relies on donations from the public and people working there for free, and they use the money they make from selling the stuff to a specific charity. The one I work for is a heart disease charity, there are ones for Save The Children and Oxfam, and pet charities like the RSPCA. We mostly sell clothes and books. I do all sorts of things, I sort and price and tag donations, I sort out the shop floor and I work on the till.

(Tangentially, there is an RSPCA shop next door to us. Several people have brought in donations to us and declared that we are getting their money/items because they don't like animals.  People are so odd.)

I decided to go volunteer for a few reasons. As one of the Great Unemployed, I have a ridiculous amount of free time, and it is tragically easy to descend into wearing your pjs all day and hardly emerging from the house during daylight hours, like some sort of plaid clad vampire.So having something to get up and go to is pretty important, and probably good for me.

And I used to walk past the shop a lot and see the sign that said, "Please Help! We need volunteers!" and I do like to help out. It's a really good thing to do, and that should be reason enough.

Also, it's one of the most rewarding things that I have ever done, on lots of levels.

Generally, the feeling that you get from working somewhere like a charity shop is one of incredible optimism. It's full of people who are all there, working for no money, just to make the world a better place. And there are lots of volunteers. Then, at the end of the day you get to see how much money that has been made by the shop, and you know that all that money will be going to do great things for people who really need it.

And people are always giving us more money or bringing in items to be donated or putting change in our collection box. I have never felt so reassured about human nature as I have working in my shop.

On a personal level, it's been amazing what working there does to my mood. Like I said, it makes me feel better about the world. And everyone who works there is extremely nice. Not being able to find a job plays hell with your self confidence, let me tell you. But at the shop, people are always saying things like, "Lal can do that, she's a smart girl," or "That's a great job you did there" or "What a nice skirt you're wearing." It may not seem like such a big deal, but having people be positive in a really matter of fact way about you is pretty awesome. When I told my boss I had been made redundant she said, "Those bastards! What idiots."

And I like being able to interact with people. Headingley, where the shop is located is a strange place in many ways. It's one of the student areas of Leeds, where a lot of student housing is and most of the businesses there are quite student orientated (bars, takeaways etc). But it's also right next to a really nice upper class part of Leeds, AND really near one of the poorer areas. So you get all kinds of people coming into the shop. My favourites, I have to say, are the students looking for fancy dress outfits. And my favourite of those are the boys who come in to buy dresses.

It's amazing.

They always come in groups, stand round the rail and have this conversation.

Guy 1: Dude, what size am I?
Guy 2: No idea. I think my girlfriend is a, 12, or something?
Guy 3: This looks huge, but it says 20, and I'm usually a 38 in shirts.
Guy 4: Why are there no odd numbers? Why does it start at 8?
Guys: THESE SIZES MAKE NO SENSE. WOMEN ARE CRAZY.

Then the large majority? Get really into it and start trying to find whole matching outfits and holding the dresses up to themselves in front of the mirror to see what suits them.

I do have a new found hatred for people who A) cut all the tags out of their clothing, thus forcing me to guess what size something is when tagging it. Even though I am one of those people! Tags are annoying. But seriously, I am a really bad guesser of sizes. B) Commercial radio. OMG you guys, it is so bad. Local commercial radio. Where you can hear the same songs every hour! Interspersed with low budget advertising for car dealerships and outlet malls!  C) And this is real hatred, people who try and get money off. One, this is a CHARITY SHOP. Any money you give us goes to charity. And you are begruding 50p? Seriously? Two, you are already getting a good deal. Most of the stuff we get in is hardly worn, and loads of it is brand new. I would say that on average people are saving over £10 PER ITEM. Also, did I mention that we are a charity shop. And you know who are the worst at this? Not the students. Not the old people. No, it is middle aged middle class women who come in laden with bags from high end retailers and then think that £4 is too much for a brand new pair of Levi jeans. I'm sorry, but it makes me SO ANGRY.

Luckily, for every person who makes me mad, there is someone who tells you a joke, or tells you to keep the change or who buys books and then brings them back the next week to be sold again

Something I find quite interesting and quite like, is that the shop is very much ruled by women. There are guys who work there, but the staff are mainly female and all the people in charge, managers, supervisors etc, are women. They are not hippy drippy types, either. And it's really cool! There are free tampons in the bathroom, and really good biscuits in the staff kitchen. No one is allowed to be disrespectful, although friendly banter is encouraged all round. My bosses do not take crap from anyone, and won't let you, either. And everyone is free to complain about stuff but everyone just gets on with the job in hand. It's kind of hard to explain, but the general atmosphere is so great and the work ethic so good it makes me wonder just how awesome the world would be if it was run by really no-nonsense women from Yorkshire.

Volunteering. I recommend it! Cheap clothing (I get a staff discount! How ridiculous is that!) and the ability to make a fairly cynical person like myself all warm and fuzzy on the inside.

Other than that, how is everyone? Twitter is awesome. The two days of summer we had, also awesome. Househunting? Sucks.
laliandra: (blackdeyada)
I am twitterpated! (thank you [livejournal.com profile] shiningartifact)

http://twitter.com/laliandra

TA-DA!

I blame Isi. She said it was good for procrastination and mild stalking, and I am powerless to resist such lures. Enchanted, ensnared etcetc

Um. Now what does one do?

Apart from make large eyes at [livejournal.com profile] mcollinknight . Kaz is here too. JOIN USSSSSSS.

If I am supposed to say what I'm doing, it's writing about the weapon that is deathly politeness, househunting and pining for my ebook of The Demon's Covenant which I was cruelly dragged from. WOE.

And that is surely more than 140 characters of what I'm doing. My life is so complex, y'all! :D!

See, I will still need LJ. You can just use twitter to remind me about all the things I said I'd post...

So, er, follow me? Or something?

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