hp: ravenclaws are vulcans

How I accomplished absolutely nothing on the first day of Christmas break

1. Hobbit Trailer!!!! Martin Freeman is the best Hobbit ever!



2. The Personal Blog of Dr. John H. Watson. How did I not know that this existed? I can't turn off my inner English teacher, so I'm irritated by the dullness of the writing, but I *love* the comments from Harry and other random people in John's life.

3. Promo clips of Sherlock series 2. So snarky! I love this series already! Also, Sherlock has apparently downgraded from a dressing gown to a sheet.

4. I am so far okay with the new comment pages, though a bit concerned about running comment fic memes. I would rather have my list of icons back, but now that I found the search box at the bottom of the icon page, it's much easier to get to the icons I want. Still much more time consuming than an alphabetized list though, so I hope they improve it.

4. My first end of the year meme! The first line of each story posted in each month
January: The first time Spock saw his mother preparing the candles and menorah for Hanukkah, he brought her a flashlight - Shamash

February: Joanna is 15 when she hatches a plot to sneak aboard the Enterprise while her mother is on her honeymoon - More Important Than the Stars

March: Muggles were disappearing in Cardiff - Nympadora Tonks and the Best Night No One Remembered

April: No stories. Busy buying house.

May: Sulu was the first to notice Chekov in a dark corner of the sickbay, poring over a thick stack of basic sex education pamphlets - Rocket Science (The Earth Girls Aren't Easy Remix)

June: On the first morning of the new term, Horace unfurled his new contract, surreptitiously testing the thickness of the parchment with his fingers - As Clever Does

July: Uhura presses the cloth a little harder against the the bloody spot on McCoy's head and frowns - At the Top of the Stairs, Waiting

August: Whenever Amanda can't find Spock, she knows he is staring at the picture in the hallway - Every Moment a Revolution

September: No stories. Creative juices zapped by first month of school.

October: The night Draco took the mark, Narcissa dreamed of killing the Dark Lord - A Mercy Even as the Darkness Hardens

November: Jim strides toward the school, resisting the urge to pull his coat tighter against the early morning chill - The Most Convenient Definitions

December: Sally's affair ends the same place it began: a crime scene - The End of the Affair

5. And now for the sad thing that seems not to belong in this post, but I can't think where else to put it, so...I lost a student and wrote a story about it. I've written lots of stories that came from my own life in one way or another. The one where Chapel is almost raped came from something that happened to me, and when my sherlockmas story goes live, perhaps I will tell you the depressing story of its inspiration. But, although I cared deeply about those stories, I didn't write them explicitly to help me deal with anything. My past was simply a convenient source of material to explore. This time, though, I desperately needed to create something from the sadness I felt for my student. I didn't want to talk about it; I wanted to create. All of John's thoughts in that story are exactly mine, from the ill-advised decision to look at a news photo of the accident scene to my incredible worry that "killed at the scene" didn't mean she went peacefully. The coat John's mother wears is the same as my student's, and I was grateful that I'd seen her wearing it that day; all the windows of her car were shattered, and it was raining outside. I didn't want her to be cold.

Writing the story helped me in a way that I didn't understand at first. I did not want to write an entry here or in my personal LJ where I would be reminded of what I felt every time I got a new comment notification. That would have brought the experience closer when I needed distance. The process of turning my thoughts into a story forced me to focus on writing technique rather than emotion, and adding a coda set in Afghanistan made it feel less like my own experience. That gave me the distance I needed so that the feelings weren't so overwhelming. Now I can say what I feel: that I knew this girl just well enough to know her dreams for the future and to admire the calm, methodical way she was freeing herself from an unpleasant and impoverished upbringing. I was so certain that if one or two adults watched out for her, she -- unlike my dozens of other students who stake their future on rap careers or professional sports -- would rise above the people and places she needed to escape. She wasn't one of the students I considered family, but I looked forward to seeing her every day, and I thought of myself as responsible for her in a way. That was why it hurt so much to look at the scene of that accident and just not know -- not know if she was in pain, if she was scared, if she called out for help that she didn't get in time. I never thought about how much I wished she had survived, but having taken some share of responsibility for her well-being, I could not stand the thought that she needed comfort that she did not receive. Somehow, writing all of those things into a story makes them much easier to deal with, no matter how ridiculous and trivial a piece of Sherlock Holmes fan fiction ought to be. (And I love you guys, and I know this is going to sound caustic and bitchy, but I don't so much want hugs or condolences in the comments. It's hard to explain, but sometimes I am not so good with the cuddling.)
I shan't cuddle, then, but will say that I think what you made because of her death is beautiful and heartwrenching in exactly the way it needed to be, and I'm glad it helped you.
Hobbit, awww!

That way of processing her death resulted in a beautiful and intense story, I am honoured that you shared it with us.
While I think Martin Freeman will make the best Hobbit, ever, I have to say I am not so excited about this movie. If there's singing in the trailer, I worry about how much singing there'll be in the movie. I wasn't a huge fan of the book, and I'm a little burnt on Tolkien, tbh. But, I will absolutely see it for Martin being the most fabulous adorable Bilbo.

Also, Sherlock! So excited!

And finally, thank you for sharing your experience with a student's death. Losing a student is painful. But I think there's something particularly traumatic about car crashes. I have a very visceral reaction to that kind of violence. Reading your story was powerful and moving, a fitting tribute.
Woot! Thanks for the link to the new Sherlock clips. I'm getting all agitated, hoping I'll be able to find an AVI download tomorrow and play this first episode myself. I'm pleased to see that our creators are keeping up the fun with this-- Sherlock in a sheet, good grief!