fernstrike: (Cityscape)
 please take a moment to mourn my entire post that i just lost by accidentally clicking away and returning to a blank autosaved draft

Essentially, it consisted of the jubilant announcement that I have at last finished my entry for the Hero's Journey Matryoshka Challenge. It was definitely a challenge!!! I definitely enjoyed it nonetheless. 

Then, an apology for the absence because I was travelling in Europe with my mother.

Then I ranted a bit about my writing projects, which were basically:
  1. Camp NaNoWriMo this July. An 80k word overhaul of my 2016 attempt.
  2. Golden Point Awards entry (a Singaporean literary competition).
  3. Writeup of my Russia trip.
  4. Writeup of my Europe trip.
  5. Completing my first 'villain treatise' (which is basically a quasi-analytical rant)
Then I was excited about starting Malay lessons in two weeks!

And then I mentioned the books I'm currently reading now that I have time - Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo, The Noise of Time by Julian Barnes, and The Unfinished Tales by Professor Tolkien.

Sorry for this slapdash summary, I'm so heartbroken about that lost post and it's too late to write it nicely again :(

fernstrike: (Default)
 Yesterday brought about the last day of Back To Middle-earth Month 2017. It was my first time ever taking part in it, and I had a marvellous time taking in the immense talent of the whole community and posting some of my own work too. 

First, for my own personal achievements:
  • I wrote 12,435 words according to my wordcount on AO3 (!!!), over the course of 15 pieces
  • Some old fics of mine had new elements explored that make me keen to try a follow-up or two, particularly the Fourth Age stuff
  • I created OCs like the Númenorean healer Nilûphel that I'm keen to write more about, and found new problematic faves (sideways glance at Sauron) that I'm excited to explore in greater depth
  • Characters I hardly knew or never thought to write were written and I'm desperate to learn more about them and who they are, especially those in my Silmarillion-centric pieces
  • I learned so many new things about the legendarium and the lore, and got a chance to dig in deeper with the Silm fandom!
  • In an unintended but great side-effect, I was so inspired by all the different events and personalities I had a chance to explore, that I now have renewed inspiration for my original novel
Second, I want to try and express how wonderful it's been to be a part of the B2MeM community, though I'm not sure I can do the experience justice. I was nervous joining in, to be part of a group of amazingly talented people who've been a part of the online fandom presence for a long time. What I found though was a friendly community of warm and encouraging people who shared a love for some amazing source material and expressed that love in writing and artwork that never ceased to blow my mind. Really - everything that had been posted has just been mind-blowingly good. More than that - everyone has been so welcoming and so positive, and I didn't feel like an outsider. It was a group of fans exploring a world, characters, and story that they loved, and it's been one of the great highlights of my year so far. I didn't get a chance to read and view everything, and so I'm still going to be doing that in the days to come.

I want to say a big thank you to the 
organisers of B2MeM and to all the participants for an absolutely wonderful month! :-) I also want to thank each and every one of you who read my fics or saw my artwork. Thank you for your immensely supportive comments. I'm so glad you enjoyed my work. It was a pleasure to share it with you!
fernstrike: (Annatar)
This artwork was completed for the B2MeM 2017 challenge, with the wildcard prompt of 'Black and White'. I really enjoyed creating this piece of Sauron disguised as Annatar - it's a rework of a previous piece, and I'm much more enamored of this design for Annatar. Because I enjoyed making the piece so much, I also did a colour version, which is posted here, but not on the original B2MeM page.
Things are not always black and white (B&W)

Things are not always black and white (colour)
fernstrike: (Me)
Time for a celebration post!

On this day in Middle-earth, the Ring was destroyed and Sauron defeated. It's also a day when folk all over the world sit down to read something Tolkien and enjoy the professor's wonderful work. This year, I'll be reading "The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun" that I purchased by chance last weekend, while in Madrid.

Because this year's theme is poetry and song, to celebrate I also have a little acapella video here, of Legolas' Song of the Sea. It was set to music by Yolanda Mott (listen to the original here). It's a beautiful and terribly sorrowful poem, and I love how she set it to music.



I also created this artwork - "Sauron Defeated" - of my personal headcanon: his spirit lingered on in Middle-earth for a time, finding its way to hiding in Ithilien, broken and ruined and miniscule, while Elves and Men reclaimed the forests he had once destroyed and moved on with their lives in peace. It's something really well explored in Prackspoor's exceptional fic Fiddler's Green, which I keep going back to. I also touched on it in my story Where The Shadows Lie.
fernstrike: (Me)
I've decided to start posting links to my fics, as I write them. This is the most recent, written for B2MeM 2017, with the prompt Tyranny from the Purple path.

Faithful

Format:Short story.
Genre: Tragedy/Drama
Pairings: None.
Characters: Original characters; Isildur; Amandil; Elendil; Sauron.
Rating: Teen and up (see warnings)
Warnings: Moderate violence; Character death (it's Númenor under Sauron...so death by sacrifice, essentially).
Summary: The tenuous relationship between the King and the Elendili is coming to its breaking point. When Isildur steals the fruit of Nimloth, what follows brings the already-heavy boot of tyranny down harder upon the Faithful - especially the gifted healer, Nilûphel.
Notes: This grew far beyond what I'd originally intended, and now stands at nearly 5000 words! I tried to incorporate lots of elements of the lore and legendarium, and it's my first time writing anything Second Age, so I hope everything turned out well enough. I created a lot of OCs for this - I might like to explore them more in future, as well as the Akallabêth in general
.
fernstrike: (Me)
Fëanorian Week Day 2: Maglor

"And it is told of Maglor that he could not endure the pain with which the Silmaril tormented him;
and he cast it at last into the Sea, and thereafter he wandered ever upon the shores,
singing in pain and regret beside the waves."
- J.R.R. Tolkien, 'The Silmarillion'


I barely finished this in time, and it's kind of rushed, but I had to do it, because I have to cry about Maglor a little bit before the day is done.

(I've never drawn such a detailed background before, or a piece with so many light/shadow elements. I think it turned out quite well!)
fernstrike: (Eldarion)

This is for both the SWG March 2017 Strength & Beauty Challenge, and for Day 1 of Fëanorian Week: Maedhros.

Read more... )
fernstrike: (Me)

Friday at long last!

Today passed swiftly and without much event. Our morning lecture was interrupted by our lecturer, who was so keen for us to go to a small conference being held about the Chinese economy, running concurrently to class, that she cut the lecture short less then halfway so that we might attend it. It proved to be enlightening in that it did not go into excessive details and technicalities, but explained major trends and revealed new insights. I was perhaps most surprised to learn that the majority of western states do not consider China a market economy, and put many barriers on it joining the WTO. It's rather sad, the echoing strains of the Cold War that never seem to die away.

But that's rather heavy and political, and I'm probably better off ranting about that on Facebook!

I spent a calm afternoon out by the river today after Skyping home. It was exciting to finally be warm enough to go out in short clothes and catch some rays (18º! And a fortnight ago it was snowing!). If you'll indulge me a selfie, here's the dress I brought from home after Christmas, to the right.I do so love the designs from British India (not like I own many...it is a great woe that such beautiful things simply thieve your wallet).

There is a wide grassy spot where the river dips over a stone wall. It faces west, and so is bright and warm in the afternoon, and you can hear the rushing water and the twittering of birds. I lay there for about an hour catching up on my reading of Fellowship of the Ring, and then returned home. On the way, I spied these lovely trees, their boughs laden with what looked like snow. A fortnight ago, it certainly was snow. Can you believe that these, below, are blossoms?


I spent the evening watching The Battle of the Five Armies while trying to come up with a. topic for my next political theory essay. I think I've settled on corruption, though it hasn't been approved. It's due next week. Uni makes disorganised children of us all.

In other news, I've made massive headway with my artwork of Maedhros - which is perfect, as Fëanorian Week begins Monday, and starts with dear Maitimo after all! I will admit I've always been more of a fan of the Sindar and the Doriathrim, but it's about time I really tried to understand the complexities of the Noldor, and especially the Fëanorians, who I've honestly rather neglected. I've also - at last - begun on my next piece for B2MeM 2017. It's growing more than I thought it would, which doesn't help fact that I'm still quite far behind my quota. When the muse compels you, though, she can be a beautiful tyrant that you are hardly keen to disobey.

I'm going to the city tomorrow, so signing off for tonight. Take care all! Hope you've had a lovely Friday too.

-S

fernstrike: (Me)

So my economics midterm went rather swimmingly, I should say!

Read more... )
fernstrike: (Me)
And so has the road gone, beneath my feet, as I've journeyed through my love for Tolkien's work, and all the forms it is taken, and incarnations in which it was expressed. It is worth remembering, for it has been long, and much has happened, and many memories, no matter how mundane or material, deserve to be remembered for themselves. Let this be, then, something of a record, a personal indulgence, for my own sake, like a scrapbook of words preserved in the great technological cloud of our era. Let this be a map and a chart of the road that has come down from my door, which I have pursued with eager feet indeed.

It began in my seventh year, when the months were drawing down into the monsoon, and minds were turning to Deepavali and Christmas afterwards. One drizzly evening, in the largest bookstore on the island of Singapore, my home, my mother put a book into my hands that would come to change me forever.
Read more... )

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