All right, let's break it down!
Michael's AI performances
- It's All Wrong, But It's All Right
- We Will Rock You / We Are The Champions
- Don't You (Forget About Me)
- Light My Fire
- Across the Universe
- Go Your Own Way (I don't even remember this performance, so I'm assuming it was mediocre at best)
- Dream On
- A Day in the Life
So... LOL @ all the people who are freaking out over Michael's elimination. Stop being ridiculous. Michael was not robbed, much less Daughtry'd. He doesn't deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as TRULY robbed contestants like Daughtry, J-Hud, LaToya, Tamyra, etc. At this stage, any elimination other than KLC's will be upsetting. I'm glad it was Michael and not Carly or Syesha. Michael had maybe three or four great performances, and the rest ranged from mediocre to downright bad. Last night was very, very mediocre. The only reason why I remembered his performance at all was because I like the song he sang.
Furthermore, Michael's elimination was anything but shocking. I saw it coming from a mile away. There was nothing special about Michael or his voice. Throughout this competition, he's been everyone's second favourite. He didn't do well enough in the semi-finals to gain the kind of stubborn fanbase Archie and Brooke have, nor did he perform consistently enough to deserve an ever increasing fanbase like Cook's. He was just there. Good enough for a few casual votes, but his target audience doesn't exactly consist of power voting fangirls, does it? Obviously, as more and more contestants get cut, people are going to stop splitting votes and put all their efforts behind their favourite. That was Michael's problem: there was a lot of overlap between his and Cook's fanbases. No doubt those fans were concerned with keeping Cook safe after his less-than-spectacular performance last night, and forgot all about voting for Michael.
So really, people need to stop bitching and blaming shit on Syesha. Anyone with half a brain would know that Kristy Lee Cook is a better scapegoat.
(On another AI-related note, Syesha's and Archie's studio recordings are incredible.)
(On one final AI-related note, OMFG THE OPENING PERFORMANCE FOR IGB WAS FKELFJ;FEAW FREAKING INCREDIBLE. I have so, so, SO much love for the SYTYCD contestants, and I was so happy to see so many of them on stage. I can't wait until season 4 starts!)
TO THE NEXT PERSON WHO USES "BAD ENDING" AS A SYNONYM FOR "ENDING THAT DOESN'T SUIT MY TASTES BECAUSE I'M NOT EMOTIONALLY STABLE ENOUGH TO HANDLE A FIC THAT DOESN'T CONCLUDE WITH BUNNIES, RAINBOWS, AND LOVE AND KISSES FOR ALL": FUCK YOU.
Okay, sorry, let me try to tackle this without excessive caps.
I am SICK and TIRED of people tearing apart a fic just because it has an ambiguous or (god forbid) unhappy ending. Yes, it's sad when you invest so much time into reading a fic only to find that the pairing you've been rooting for doesn't stay together, but have you ever considered that, oh, MAYBE THE AUTHOR HAS A REASON FOR CHOOSING THAT PARTICULAR ENDING?
Take "The Sweetest Sin", for example. All right, maybe Draco didn't have to die (lol spoiler, but I'm pretty sure none of the people reading this give a crap about SS), but do you really think he and Hermione could have had a happy relationship after he broke her trust? No. Because in real life, rape victims don't fall in love with their rapists unless they're psychologically unbalanced (which Hermione isn't, at least in my fanon). And in fanfiction... well, that's another story, but let's exclude FF.net and MNFF from this argument. Sure, Draco redeemed himself by freeing her, but that doesn't erase what he did BEFORE he "fell in love with her". Actually, to this day, I'm still not sure if he DID fall in love with her. It's far more likely that he fell in love with the parts of Iris he saw in her. FAJJ;LJFE8AAE okay, forget it, I'm not going to analyse SS, because my brain cells are precious and few. The point is, Draco and Hermione's tragic ending was justified. It would have been absurd if they had skipped off into the sunset after everything that happened between them. Things just don't "work out" like that, at least not in their circumstances.
Cinnamon's fic, "Beautiful World", is another good example. A lot of the people to whom I recced this fic expressed disappointment over the fact that Draco didn't miraculously discover some way to get rid of the curse responsible for killing Harry. HONESTLY? Do you think a sixteen year old is capable of outwitting ancient magic in the span of a few months? There was no plausible way for Harry and Draco to have their happy, fluffy ending. The bittersweet one they got instead was FAR more appropriate.
Of course, there's also "Take My Heart Away" by Hatusu. TMHA might be the most classic example of an angsty ending done so well that any other ending would have ruined the fic. Really, I don't have much to argue here. I think even the most thick-headed of readers can agree that Hatusu's ending was (to put it simply) FUCKING BRILLIANT.
Finally, the most recent fic that comes to mind: Team Epilogue's "Fool" fic for hd_wc, "Riptide" by ??. I can understand why some people might dislike the ending, but imho, I think the one the author chose to use best fits the prompt and the story. The goal of the fic was not to get Harry and Draco together, but to show how Draco's feelings for Harry initiated his journey of self-discovery and ultimately allowed him to rise above his preexisting beliefs and values and start over again. The ambiguous ending really captured this idea.
In conclusion, it shouldn't be a let-down if a fic you read doesn't end happily. THAT'S LIFE. People find out they're wrong for each other; people make choices that aren't always the right ones; people DIE. I know fanfiction is more about entertaining than it is about depicting reality (because honestly, if we were trying to paint an accurate picture of reality, we wouldn't be slashing 90% of the characters we do), but at the same time, readers would do well to remember that sad endings don't always equal bad writing. When written well, they're proof that the author had a clear idea of what she wanted to do with her story, and nothing was going to sway her. Isn't that a good thing?
Now that I've brought up the topic of "The Sweetest Sin", I feel like talking a bit more about my other old fics. I actually reread some chapters (mostly the last few) of ATW yesterday, and it struck me how... descriptive my writing used to be. Seriously. I actually used imagery and metaphors and all that other literary shit. What's more, my writing was pretty emotional. It's really bizarre, because I can sort of see what attracted some readers to my earlier fics. For all their deficiencies (and there are many, believe me), there were still some parts that actually made me feel something when I reread them.
Of course, this begs the question... what the fuck happened? Why am I incapable of writing emotional pieces now? Is it because I'm so cautious and determined to avoid overdoing the sap/fluff/melodrama/etc.? Or is it because I'm no longer an emo teenager in need of an outlet for my moods? Both possibilities are equally disturbing. These days, my fics are predominantly everyday dialogue. I just can't write anything flowery.
SOMETHING NEEDS TO CHANGE. I would like to read through one of my current fics without falling asleep, thanks.
This is going to be one of those rambly, incoherent rants that everyone passes over because they haven't got a clue what it's describing. Basically, I'd really like to pick up a major in print journalism next semester and still keep my major in psychology and have room to later apply for a screenwriting minor. The problem is, the journalism school at USC is RIDICULOUSLY hardcore. The major is all structured so that you need five semesters, starting from the first fall semester after you apply, to finish it. Each class is a prerequisite for the next one, so you can't even mix and match.
Right now, I'm on the D-clearance list for JOUR-202 and JOUR-203, the two newswriting classes everyone has to take before they can take any other journalism classes. Those two courses are only offered in the fall semesters, which means if I don't get into them off the D-clearance list for fall 2008, there's no way I can pursue the journalism major without delaying my graduation a semester (something I can't afford, since my scholarship only covers four years). So basically, whether I can land the major I want depends on my god awful luck.
Regardless of this fact, I still have to go through the tedious process of applying for the print journalism major, because if I do happen to get into the newswriting classes, I'll need major standing so I can get into the reporting classes that I have to take in the spring. Have I mentioned how intense the journalism school is? Yeah. They only admit 20 students every semester (out of all transfers, both from other colleges and from other schools within USC). They also require, along with sample pieces of writing and a statement of intent, two letters of recommendation from professors with whom I've taken classes. UH YEAH, THAT'S GOING TO BE A PROBLEM, BECAUSE I'M PRETTY SURE NONE OF THE PROFESSORS I'VE HAD SO FAR KNOW I EXIST. I'm one of those really quiet students who sits in the back of the classroom and zones out, but still does well without ever having asking a single question in or out of class. As convenient as that sounds, it sucks when I'm faced with the task of procuring letters of recommendation.
I've been freaking/stressing out over this to the point where I'm losing sleep and starting to get sick all over again. I've asked basically my entire Facebook friends list, and they've been really helpful. I've decided on the two professors I'm going to ask (my arts & letters prof right now and my writing 140 prof from last semester), but now I have to figure out how to ask them in the most tactful way possible. Not gonna lie, I'm pretty socially awkward, especially when it comes to dealing with my professors. I sucked at asking for recs in high school, and I'm pretty sure that hasn't changed. Right now I'm thinking I'll send them both emails asking if I can see them during office hours. I'm hoping my WRIT140 prof has office hours this semester, because I didn't feel close enough to him last semester to take him to lunch or something. Guh. I keep writing and rewriting the two emails... I'm too nervous to send them.
Pardon me while I go search for my backbone.
If you're too lazy to read through all of that, I don't blame you. Here are the things you need to know:
1) I wrote eighteen for SKOM (hee, props to anyone who figures that out), and I'm pleased with the way it turned out. Chapter 19 is ~5k right now. I think it's just about finished. I just need to add in one or two transition scenes.
2) ldws pimp: Sign-ups close on Sunday, so go sign up now if you want to participate! There are only six participants right now. It looks like it's going to be a short competition, so if you were worried about time, never fear :D
3) hd_worldcup pimp: Support Team Epilogue! Yay!
ETA: Wow, I just finished a fantastic book called "On Beauty" by Zadie Smith. It was... yeah, really good. A wonderful, thoughtful depiction of life, love, and beauty. I'm not too good at writing book reviews, so I'll leave it at that. If anyone has time, I would definitely recommend reading it.