fic_of_fork: (donna/ten)
Since I think I've picked up a few new readers, I thought it would be good to stop and explain a few things, namely who all these characters are.

Dramatis Personae )
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Which New Who character does this remind you of?

It's from the short story, "Midrash" by Ian Mond in Life During Wartime, a collection of short stories in the Bernice Summerfield end of things.  Setting:  it's during the invasion of the Fifth Axis, a human supremacist group of thugs, who wind up taking over the sector that the Braxiatel Collection is in, catching everyone (and Braxiatel) unaware, since the asteroid Brax picked was supposed to be in a boring corner of the galaxy, where nothing ever happens.  Anyway, all aliens (except Brax) have either been shipped into camps or shipped elsewhere.  Brax is under house arrest for the duration of it and subject to various interrogations as to where his "time equipment" is.  This passage happens after Braxiatel tries to poison one of the Fifth Axis commanders, and they bring in a special interrogator.  When this passage happens, he's in some sort of trance.

"I pity you, Irving.  I pity you because I know you wanted to be so much more.  When you were young, you desired freedom.  You wanted to break the shackles of your people and enjoy the wonders of the universe.  You'd no longer be methodical, precise and practical.  Out there, you'd be transformed into a totally different person, both physically and mentally.  You'd actually find yourself a personality.

"But it never happened.  Your opportunity never came.  Or maybe it did and you were too frightened to sieze it.  Others had those adventures for you.

"And so here you are, hiding behind all this beauty:  artefacts and documents and treasures.  You think this is a replacement for a dream you never realised.  But deep down you know it's nothing compared to leaving your own mark on the universe.

"To become legend.

"Because in your own arrogant way, that's what you really wanted to be.  A legend.  A camp-fire story."
fic_of_fork: (Default)
Word Count:  767
Summary: In which I opine over the similarities and differences between composing new music ("classical," if that word means anything anymore) and writing fanfic and their respective fandoms.
Warnings: Non-fiction, mention made to various academics in music and critical theory.  This one isn't fiction, unless it's some strange Borgesian sense of the word.
Rating: All ages
Characters: a composer, a fanfic writer, and their fandoms. 
Genre: Gen, meta
Author's note: This is what happens when I'm short on sleep and long on worry.
Disclaimer:  Did I mention I haven't slept much the past few days?

You know, I primarily write fanfic for my own enjoyment.  There could be some loose end in an episode that I want to explore or something I'd do differently.  (Like bringing the Time Lords back.)  There could be some scene-behind-the-scenes that needs poking into.  And I could just need a Doctor Who fix.

Milton Babbitt, a composer, wrote a fairly famous essay that's been often misconstrued and misread.  Originally published in 1958, it had the unfortunate title of "Who Cares if You Listen?"  (It was an editorial choice made for him, not the one he wanted...or so I've been told by a couple of people who know the guy.  Babbitt's on my short list of people I'd like to have a beer with.)  But the upshot of his article is that the public isn't always the best judge of what a given work of art should be.  In a sense, the composer needs some sort of solitude in which to work, otherwise he/she just winds up aping what's popular.  Babbitt's article is much more nuanced and specific to composition than I'm summarizing.  (It's well worth a read, just to see what he wrote, not what other people think he wrote.)  Other theorists/composers I admire have elucidated other opinions.  (Like Benjamin Boretz and friends talking about how composers write out of some deep need.)  See also: Fredric Jameson's discussion on the parable of the oarsmen in his book on late Marxism

rest behind the cut )
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So I'm thinking about the next fic.  One of the ideas I've got is to bring back Braxiatel, and after this post of [livejournal.com profile] lizbee's, I think it's a certainty.  I already set the stage, as it were, in Memorare, since he was one of the group rescued from the Emissaries.

Thing is, I like complicated characters.  I'd heard the Gallifrey audios, but I hadn't sought out any of the Bernice Summerfield audios before [livejournal.com profile] lizbee's post.  Now that I have listened to a number of them (in order to get a handle on Brax's character), I'm more convinced that the change in Braxiatel's character between the Gallifrey audios and the Braxiatel Collection audios in the Bernice Summerfield series is a result of the Pandora infection.  (It would probably be a good idea to open up another tab or window and go read [livejournal.com profile] lizbee's post.)

I like redemption, too, and I have a hard time believing any character who isn't purely evil is lost.  I have a hard time seeing Brax as a pure villain (chaotic evil), but more chaotic neutral or true neutral (I think most Time Lords would hedge towards lawful neutral, with the Doctor being chaotic neutral/chaotic good.)  I think Mike would argue that because Brax was under the influence of the Pandora fragment that he wasn't to blame for a lot of what happened.  Evil likes to take what's already there and amplify it back, and mortal sin requires full and conscious participation in it. 

That doesn't mean that things will be all sunshine and light, either.  While I don't think a character like Braxiatel would wallow in it, I think the knowledge of what he did under Pandora's influence would at least be on the forefront of his mind.  I can't see a reconcilliation with Benny, for instance, and I don't think the other Time Lords would ever let him out of their sight, much less near a position with any kind of influence, like he had under Romana.
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http://seattle.metblogs.com/2008/08/04/severed-foot-found-in-washington/

That fic is asking to be written.  It's got to be aliens.
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Am I crazy?  I'm seriously considering taking up Lance Parkin on his challenge: 

http://theeyeless.blogspot.com/2008/06/challenge.html

I'm thinking it's going to revolve around the feet that keep washing up on Puget Sound shores, because if the Mounties are stumped, it's got to be aliens.  Plus I think the Pacific Northwest would be a great location.  It's wonderfully creepy in the fall, and gorgeous in the summer.  Hell, the area near where the feet were found has stood in for a number of different planets in BSG.

Think the Doctor and Donna will be after some damn good coffee? )

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