green_dreams: Animated picture of a creepy gloved hand. (Fatal Experiments)
So, John and I are driving around, and between the GPS in the cars and our phones, it's a very well-informed trip. And it came up in casual discussion that many many horror movie plots have been rendered unworkable by the existence of these things--GPS systems and cellphones.

This is pretty obvious stuff; it ties back to the truism about horror movies being, in many ways, about isolation. Being able to dial 911 and start hiking out with a map that shows you your heading and the distance to the highway makes things a lot more manageable. (Or, you know, the amusing values of being able to Google something like "chainsaw sabotage"... But I digress.)

We went back to it later, a bit. If you eliminate the tactical elements of isolation, then what you're left with is two options. There's social isolation ("they won't believe me" or "they didn't believe me")[1] which has a long and storied history, including those godawful fifties movies about the aliens landing and the teenagers being the only ones to see them. Or else there's self-imposed isolation, where the protagonists don't want to call for help; what that sprang to mind was them being in a haunted house where they had no right to be[2], but Session 9 is also a beautiful example. The guy needs the job, there's no way to leave and get it done, and he can't afford to take the time to call for help. Alright, yes, there is definitely an element of social isolation there; that's fine. One kind doesn't need to do all the work.

So I am discussing this with John, and he points out that splitting up becomes a lot less frightening, a lot more manageable, if you have something like Google Latitude in place. You know where people are, you can track them. And I nod in agreement, and then he smiles and points out that it isn't true.

"You don't know where I am. You know where my phone is."

I do confess I shuddered. (A lovely moment over lunch, to be sure.)

Because that takes it out of isolation and into uncertainty, which is the other great foundation of horror. The world crumbling out from under you, slowly or suddenly. In some ways it ties to isolation--not having anything you can be sure of to reach out to--but it's a basically different development. It's the horror of "The calls are coming from inside the house!", which relies not on there being no-one to help but on the space that you were sure was safe being taken away.

So that's something else to look to, I guess. Not sure how much good it'd be for movies, which don't necessarily have a lot of time to establish certainty, but definitely something to keep in mind for written work.

(ObDisclaimer: no, not all horror movies rely on isolation. Scream, f'r ex, handles the advent of the ubiquitous cellphone quite well.)
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[1] See also: all the travel horror that involves being surrounded by those terrible strange Other People (usually brown).[3]
[2] Or this 90s movie about four suburban guys out for a night on the town who accidentally see a murder and don't want to call for help because they hit someone with their car... I will try and look up the title later.
[3] ...echoes of HP Lovecraft, actually...
green_dreams: Greyscale silhouette of a black cat with grey eyes (boo-cat)
So I ended up getting my hands on a copy of De Profundis a while ago. Wasn't really sure what to expect, but the bit about being good for people with minimal time appealed.

It's basically a guidebook for writing in-character documents in a Lovecraft horror setting, how to organize people to play that kind of... I'm not sure I'd even call it a game. Collaborative story-telling with integrated prop-making, maybe. Still working through it; they've got a couple of suggestions for how to set up a group (e.g.; people who signed a pact with the devil several years ago at a party and are now realizing that they really signed a pact with the devil and would like to break it), and suggested random events or useful items that you can weave into the background for your various characters.

I'm not sure how to balance the interaction as more than one-on-one. I have been rather spoilt by the facility of adding names to the "To:" field, not to mention the "Cc:" and "Bcc:" options, but you could try simply writing to more than one person. Not hard, just unusual.

And, of course, I am getting my interest in this sparked while we are having rolling postal strikes. Can't win for losing, I guess.

'd anyone be interested?

Muses!

Mar. 15th, 2011 05:25 pm
green_dreams: (drrraaaaamaaaa)
There is a new Oglaf comic up that has something to say about inspiration. It's an Oglaf comic, so it's NSFW. But it's funny.

Long day.

Feb. 24th, 2011 05:34 pm
green_dreams: (Morton Silkline)
Written at 2:03 pm

I have a notebook. It's a very nice notebook, actually; one of the ones with a wrap cover and the front having a slightly embossed writing sample and the signature of an author.[2] And I cannot get up the nerve to actually write in it. Since I have owned it since before 2011 and it is nearly March, this is both embarrassing and impractical.

Curse you, meatsuit. Also, whining. )

I need to get a backpack for my laptop, or some other kind of carrying method that better distributes the weight. I was looking at getting another case anyway--the zipper on mine broke--although I don't actually know if you can get backpacks for laptops. I imagine you can, and if you can't I imagine I can find a backpack big enough to carry both laptop and laptop case, because I am protective of my laptop and she gets padding.

Also I could probably take a few things out of there, but really only a few. I would want to keep

  • the power cord and mouse (although actually the left button on the touchpad is working intermittently these days[3], so if I am willing to be patient with the clicky-clicky, I could maybe leave the mouse behind);

  • an appointment calender and a notebook because those are both more convenient in tangible format than on the laptop;

  • a few pens and pencils;

  • my iPod Shuffle, which takes up slightly more space than $6 in toonies and weighs less so that's okay;

  • my wallet, keys, and cellphone. Because it's actually rather hard to find office slacks for women that have pockets, and better those things be in a zippered pocket on my laptop case than dropped into my loose, low-cut jacket pocket while I am riding around on the bus.

So besides that, there's... well, whatever book I'm reading, or whatever project I'm knitting. I can stop carrying those around, but they wouldn't make much of a difference to the weight and I do like having them around.

And that is mostly my day, today, with a side order of annoyance at not being able to look up things like bus schedules or new laptop cases. Not really interesting, but it does sort of help to get some of it out, even if I am typing it into OpenOffice and can't actually post at the moment.

Also, 830 words. In 48 minutes. I have done worse.

Written at 5:35 pm

Just got home. Cat made a mess. Cleaning up now. Seriously considering skipping SnB tonight.
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[1] The side of the bottle says you should only take two at a time, max daily dose of six. It's okay, it was on the advice of a physician.
[2] In this case, EA Poe. Gold "ink" on a sort of purple-fuschia-wine background. Pretty.[4]
[3] Which I feel rather goes with my suspicion that it had been failing to work because there was a bit of grit or a crumb or something jammed underneath it. Some mechanical obstruction which has been worn down or has shifted. That said, I do want to vacuum the keyboard.
[4] Looking at the footnotes and seeing [1] and [2] in order evokes the image of Poe as a physician, who uses positively florid stationery for his prescription/advice pad.
green_dreams: (commit no nuisance)
Because I've gotten it stuck in my head (after the fourth episode of Criminal Minds), and I understand one should share one's earworms.

Doctor My Eyes, with lyrics.

Cut 'cause you probably know them, posted 'cause I like them. )

...I could absolutely see that as a quite creepy theme song. Hmh. Compartmentalization much?

Oh! On that note, is there a term for the... I guess you could call it the tame monster archetype? Serial killer who only kills serial killers (thank you Dexter), protagonist who has the potential to be a serial killer and keeps his impulses on a leash until a monster (competitor) shows up, that kind of thing? I was scraping through TV Tropes, since they're usually pretty good at collating examples and naming them, but the closest I could find is the Monster Allies and that doesn't really fit--I'm thinking protagonists.

Note that I am specifically excluding nice vampires and the like. They're generally portrayed as nice-people-with-an-addiction/allergy-combo. I'm thinking of characters that are inhumane to the point where other characters in the setting would be prone to seeing them as inhuman--if they knew what they were.

(ETA: That the protagonist's nature can be described as "what they were" rather than "who they were" is probably a fairly good indicator of the kind of thing I am looking for, here.)

(ETA2: Ben suggests looking up Hellsing.)

*sigh*

Dec. 5th, 2010 12:55 am
green_dreams: (books and glasses)
Got a bunch of file deleting done today, and a bit of writing. Am starting to get depressed by the sheer number of files, and the prospect of going through them all. But I think I've freed up thirty or forty gigs of space in the last couple of days, so yay progress.

Also, made the mistake of downloading and reinstalling Puzzle Kingdoms this morning. Lost two and a half hours. I may uninstall it again.

Went with John to pick up plate and hard drive from [personal profile] moiread, and got to meet her snake. She's a corn snake with all the brown/black melanin bred out of it[1], and she is gorgeous. It's like having a living chunk of carnelian flex and slide around your fingers. I got to feed her, although she didn't coil.

Then there was garlic pizza with extra garlic and garlic dipping sauce for the crust. Overall a decent day. I think I'm just feeling a bit overwhelmed by the amount of file0clearing and photo-sorting I need to do. It's easy to keep so much junk, because it doesn't take up physical space, but the clutter still annoys me.
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[1] I may be off on particulars?
green_dreams: (books and glasses)
Going through my external hard drive, and found some stuff I wrote--some very old stuff, '95, '96, that kind of time ago. I haven't forgotten about any of these, but I haven't thought of them in years. And deargod but a lot of it was painfully derivative overwritten telling-not-showing crap with the subtlety of a sledgehammer dropped on your foot.

On the flipside, I actually finished stuff, then. I'm looking at a thirty-thousand word--I guess it's a novella?--novella, and it's hokey and hamhanded and I think it might loose a lot of its wordcount if I made it semi-presentable, but it's finished.
green_dreams: (old alarm)
According to [personal profile] matociquala, who got it from [personal profile] truepenny, there is a First Lines Meme going around. Post the first lines from various WIPs, because it will make them become finished works.

(As she says, "Through incantation do we command the demon to appear." Yes, I'm sure this is magical thinking. Hush. I am a cowardly and superstitious sort.)

First lines )

Well.

Dec. 31st, 2009 01:07 am
green_dreams: (...crap)
I think I am becoming a knitter. I spilt a sticky deep red wine on the knitted part of my merino-and-silk pale cool blue-lavender-periwinkle scarf, and the first thing I did was call for instructions.

(After the damn thing was soaking, I attended to such minutae as "mopping off the chequebook". I think all things were salvaged.)

I threaded it on to waste yarn, but twelve of the stitches came off and I have no idea how. I think it might have something to do with the yarnovers. I think that while it's laying flat I can get one of the other rows rethreaded onto waste yarn and go from there. Means I won't have to rip back as far.

Still not tired. Kinda disappointed over yet another knitting setback, but not sick of *knitting*, just a bit worn down.

I don't think I've written anything in a week. This needs to change.
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