R&M Begins!

I haven’t had much time to post lately, but I will step into say that, now that the first volume of Jake and the Dynamo is out of my hands, my next project is to roll up my sleeves and put Rag & Muffin into a form that is presentable.

I’ve learned a lot about the craft since I started this project an embarrassing number of years ago, so I think it is finally time to get it shipshape. To that end, I’ve dusted off my copy of the Hobson-Jobson and begun to re-immerse myself in the seedy, dirty world of Indian dungeonpunk I first conceived of … well, a long time ago.

Fortunately, at some point, I had the foresight to attach a rather extensive glossary to the existing draft. That’s good, because I’ve forgotten half the words I’d discovered or made up for this thing. Following the lead of Rudyard Kipling, I never give the native language’s name, but most of it is Hindi with a smattering of Sanskrit and the Hindi-English slang sometimes called Hinglish.

It Is Finished.

I have just put the last touches on the final draft of Jake and the Dynamo. It took me longer than it should have, admittedly, partly because of some procrastination.

After I made all the major alterations Lamplighter requested, I went back through the entire thing to make sure it flowed smoothly and that the new additions didn’t introduce any problems. While I was at it, I took the opportunity to improve several word choices, remove some wayward commas, and fix a few previously undiscovered typos. Three days and half a bottle of bourbon later, I’m satisfied that it’s reasonably well polished.

The process was painful, but it is, after all, my first novel, so I hope I can be more efficient in the future. Maybe I should go cry into a bowl of noodles like that chick in Whispers of the Heart or something.

Anyhow, it so happens that I have also got all of Roffles Lowell’s illustrations. He apologized for being tardy, but from my point of view, his timing was impeccable, as he finished at the same time I did.

I’ve a lot of other things going on. I’m back in school, of course, and I’ve kind of been letting my studies slide while I’ve been finishing this up. Also, I just picked up a new job directly relevant to my educational training, so that’s exciting.

As busy as I am, I can’t promise that posting here will become more regular, at least for a few days. But the book, at least, can go sit on someone else’s desk instead of mine. That’s a relief.

Kai Wai Cheah Goes Magical Girl

I’m going to have no serious content here until I FINISH MY BOOK (which might be today!), but I am pausing momentarily to note something that showed up in my Twitter feed:

This is from the Twitter account of Kai Wai Cheah, the author of No Gods, Only Daimons. He’s a seriously skilled author of military sf and fantasy. He’s also in my writer’s group, where he’s given some additional details about this project, but since he hasn’t posted them in a public forum, I won’t repeat them.

miko, in case you don’t know, is a Shinto shrine maiden. That’s a picture of his new character up at the top there …  nah, I’m kidding. I grabbed that off Pinterest.

Anyway, let’s just say that I’m very interested in seeing what a knowledgeable military sf writer does with magical girls.

#WaifuWednesday on Thursday

Featuring Nagisa Misumi.

I’m currently neck-deep in Glitter Force, the English adaptation of Smile Pretty Cure!, the ninth Pretty Cure series, but only the second to get dubbed in English.

Although its writing is decidedly better, Smile PreCure doesn’t have the technically impressive action sequences of the original Futari wa Pretty Cure. So this week’s Waifu Wednesday goes out to one of the original cures, Nagisa Misumi, also known as Cure Black. In addition to starring in the original series, she reappears in the sequel Pretty Cure Max Heart and in multiple movies.

Continue reading “#WaifuWednesday on Thursday”

#WaifuWednesday

Featuring Rose Lavillant.

Today’s #WaifuWednesday goes out to Rose Lavillant from Miraculous Ladybug.

Rose is in the same class as the protagonists Marinette and Adrien. Blond, blue-eyed, and presumably French, she is known for her sweet temperament. Look at the picture at the top there: does she have a finger pressed against her own eyeball?

I can’t stop staring at the characters’ freaky eyes.

When her classmates were attempting to make a homemade horror movie, Rose was in charge of the catering. Even when a real monster showed up and started devouring them one by one, she was still making sure that everyone had enough to eat.

That’s her in the back with her spread of fruit and juice.

Continue reading “#WaifuWednesday”

A Prayer to the Moon Princess on this Day of Darkness

Your Majesty,

On this day when your orb covers the disc of the sun, may we remember those virtues of love and justice for which you fought, and may we remain always true to the Silver Millennium.

Don’t look straight at it, you idiots.

May we remember not to look directly at yon eclipse, lest we be blinded by your majesty. And may we remember not to use those glasses we got off Amazon, for lo, they are fake.

I hope those aren’t from Amazon.

And speaking of amazons, we pray that on this day, you will not allow that Dead Moon Circus, once imprisoned by your mother, to be released by the phlebotinum of yon solar eclipse. Or, if you do allow it, that you totally kick their butts forthwith.

Uh oh.

And lead us not into temptation, especially the temptation to make out with any alicorn ponies that might appear to us during this eclipse, even though that would be kind of hot.

Dammit, loli, you stole my husbando.

And may your Crystal Tokyo come, and your ten-century reign over the Solar System, that we may live long lives of peace and sugar-free cake, at least until your daughter completely screws things up.

Amen.

But do something about your architectural scheme because, I mean, really.

On Waifus

A debate has raged—raged, I say—in our combox on the subject of waifus.

What is a waifu? And how many waifus may a man have?

The first question is easily answered. As explained by Know Your Meme, the word waifu entered the parlance of English-speaking otaku largely on account of the popular anime adaptation of Azumanga Daioh, an irreverent and plotless slice-of-life story originally created as a four-panel comic strip by Kiyohiko Azuma. Azumaga Daioh is more-or-less the origin of the deservedly reviled CGDCT (cute girls doing cute things) genre of manga and anime, though it is considerably less putrid than many of its imitators. In one of Azuma’s comic strips, later adapted into an anime episode, the girls find a photograph of a beautiful lady, which fell from the pocket of their creepy pedo schoolteacher. When the girls ask the identity of the woman in the picture, the creepy teacher replies, in mutilated English, “Mai waifu,” that is, “My wife.” Continue reading “On Waifus”

#WaifuWednesday

Featuring Sailor Jupiter!

Today’s Waifu Wednesday is dedicated to Makoto Kino, also known as Sailor Jupiter. Sailor Jupiter is best pony.

Naoko Takeuchi originally intended the character to be a sukeban (that is, a girl gangster), but later dropped that idea. Nonetheless, Makoto retains some sukeban-like characteristics, including an intimidating air and a longer skirt.

Allegedly, she’s enormous and intimidates people with her bulk, though she actually has the same Barbie doll build as every other girl in Sailor Moon and doesn’t appear to stand more than a couple of inches taller.

Makoto likes flowers, cooking, and boys. In the anime, she also studies Kung fu. The anime also turns her general boy-craziness into a running gag: most every male she meets reminds her of her senpai.

She has super strength, and she’s a pretty good fighter even when not transformed. As a sailor, she can fire bolts of lightning, and she can allegedly control weather, though she apparently sucks at it.

But that’s okay, because no matter what, she’s still best sailor scout.

Once This Week Is Over, I’m Gonna Binge-Watch ‘Flip Flappers,’ ‘Made in Abyss,’ and ‘Sailor Moon S’

In case you’re wondering where I’ve been lately, I’m entering the last week of the summer school term, so I’ve been too busy to post regularly, or to keep up with current news in magical girls.

All my assignments are due by Friday. Once that day of reckoning comes, I’m going to sit down with Lamplighter’s notes on Jake in the Dynamo, make the necessary changes, and prepare a submission package. Once I have the art from Lowell, off it goes.

So once we reach the end of the week, I’ll start having some more reviews and essays for all y’all. We’ll definitely continue with Revolutionary Girl Utena and watch the second half of Sailor Moon S, at the very least.

Also, I noticed a couple of months back that my brief posts on the artwork from Made in Abyss were getting a lot of hits. This is because the animated adaptation is getting streamed on Amazon Strike. I’ll probably check it out as soon as it finishes its run; I don’t have time to follow it in real time.

As I had suspected it would when I saw some of the related art, the manga is also seeing an English translation, which I believe will be coming from Seven Seas Entertainment.

Also, based on the buzz, it seems the storyline is more … gruesome … than the puni plush character designs implied. You’d think I’d be familiar with this trick by now, but I guess I got fooled.