janewilliams20: (Default)
I was learning to walk using a crutch, after having the left leg amputated. It was easier than expected, because I'd lost a lot of weight (most of one leg, just for starters). So far, so not unreasonable, that'll probably happen one day.
One crutch, not two, and it was an under-arm job that looked like a forked branch had been hacked off a tree. I think it was out of an online game set in 1462.
I was wearing a black ballet shoe on the right foot. This was important.
This was happening in an expanded version of the kitchen in our old house in Stevenage, which for some reason was now on the 11th floor of Lister Hospital.

That was last night. A few nights ago, I was about to start some small and simple craft project, when I realised that before doing so, I had to enter it into two? three? request-for-service systems, document it as a change in two more, estimate time and materials taken in arbitrary and inappropriate units, and get it passed by a couple of committees, one of them only existing in the aforementioned on-line game. So I didn't bother, and woke up instead.

janewilliams20: (Default)
That's the latest research project, for an online game in which I seem to own the place. So I'm calling on the hive-mind, as Google isn't turning up much. 
There's good stuff down these links
and of course Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bury

I'd like to find a map of the main streets at the time, and I'd like to know if "The Rock" was so-called back then, and if so, why? It's now a big shopping centre and leisure complex, it used to be a shopping street - is there also some big chunk of geology sitting around?

janewilliams20: (Default)

I was beginning to wonder - fiction productivity has been down to almost zero recently, I'm even struggling to do PBeM posts. BUt the other night, an an RK forum, this sad little plea was spotted, commenting on a rather boring post.
From the title she'd have expected something of the level of a mob of people with pencils up their nostrils running around singing in a shower voice, hitting each other with fish and wearing their underpants on their heads.
An hour or so later, it appeared that yes, I can still write stories to order, at least if given enough of a challenge. Only 650-odd words, (yes, that would work without the hyphen, too), but all teh requested ingredients were there, there was a coherent plot, and all the aforementioned activites happened for good reason.

It seems possible, on reflection, that the shortage of writing output might have something to do with the hours and intensity I've been putting into my job?
janewilliams20: (Default)
Only in a minor and trivial way, but dealt with.
I can't compose. I can take someone else's tune and transpose it, stick chords under it, maybe even write variations on it (the Vaurian Variant on "Brian Boru's March" being the best of those). But original composition? No. A blank staff stays blank.

Except... over in Renaissance Kingdoms, we were asked to produce an English National Anthem (for a fictional England in 1459). We'd posted links to various YouTube tunes, and modified the words a bit. Someone suggested actually writing something ourselves. Well, I know I can't do that... but then a little tune popped into my head, only four bars. It stuck. I looked for where I'd installed Noteworthy, discovered I hadn't and went and got it. Poked around a bit until I'd got notes on a staff that sounded like what I could hear in my head. By now another little tune had dropped in to join it, so a bit of copy/paste later, I had a complete AABA 8-line verse, and half the words to the four couplets. I opened up a new staff, put a few basic chords in there, played with the instrument settings till it would do as a demo of the tune, exported as MIDI, dropped it to the website, and called in a friend to help me out with the words. Perhaps an hour later, 5 verses of slightly satirical Anthem hit those forums.

Now admittedly, that was a very simple little tune: I was probably producing more complex stuff before I was ten. But the block is no longer a block.
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
.... and as a result, they don't operate at the moment.
Meanwhile, 14-20 WoS arrived in Manchester last night, and it would be quite nice to be able to organise what we're doing about them. Preferably somewhere less public than this, but....
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
Since one of the candidates is currently banned from the RK forum, here's a possible place to discuss the subject. Totally open to all, but that's life.
janewilliams20: (Default)
Here's the post I wrote on the PDA and haven't been able to upload till now - we're now in the Harz mountains, with an Internet PC in the lobby and no silly restrictions.

Last night involved a pipe & drum duet in the marketplace (got pic and wav) then pizza, as some of the party are 'all sausaged out'.
Internet café was very hot and Flickr was very slow. I've got the Bacharach pics up, but the Rhine and onwards is still to come.
Yes, we're going to stay another day.

We separated for the morning and did the main town museum, in the old convent. No photos allowed :(
They've got a wonderful sword collection!
sword geekery under here, and some Gloranthan bits )

Lunch at the Swan, and the discovery that suckling pig doesn't taste any different to full-size pig. Then onwards to the Medieval Crime Museum. A fascinating insight into how the law worked, nothing like as brutal as the Hollywood version would have you believe. I now have a book on the subject, but impressions from the museum include:
Law geekery under here, and some RK bits )

Drinks and nibbles at the same place we met at for lunch yesterday. Then back to the room, picking up Coke and fruit on the way, for some dossing.
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
Over in Renaissance Kingdoms, it's time for me to have my own Coat of Arms ('cos I'm now Viscountess of Liverpool). "Azure, a pig volant proper" is my suggestion. I'd like to have a Latin motto: can anyone translate "the impossible we do at once, miracles take a little longer" for me?
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
We're making the most of two bank holidays to have a long weekend city-break, in which we can also hand over some re-enactment kit to a friend.

So, why the RK icon, you ask? The city in question is Liverpool. Read more... )
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
You may remember that I play in this game set in the England of 1455 (sort of). There's some questions coming up about what's legal and what isn't, and I'm getting interested in how the law worked then. The particular question at the moment is whether a Count is above the law, or can alter the law without consultation with his elected Council. The whole "elected council" thing sounds very unmedieval to me in the first place, but I'm realising that my knowledge of the medieval legal and feudal system is quite close to zero. Can anyone give me any pointers?
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
I'm an established farmer now, with pigs in one field and corn in another. (Yes, corn - maize - in 1455. I feed it to my pigs. Don't ask.)

Apart from the one-day hires to work in people's fields, I've been offered a job. My local tavern, the Paga Inn, wants a new bar-maid, and I've been offered the place! A seat at the bar guaranteed, all the beer I want (as long as I pay standard prices for it), and, after a bit of haggling, a clean apron every day and a basket for Daffid when he follows me in there. Daffid - ah, yes. My little lamb. I acquired him while RPing in a game about weresheep, and he sort of stuck... I'll take up the offer when Marya gets back from her planned church retreat in January (while I'm in Switzerland).

We've had a lot of fun partying over in Kendal, and soon it'll be time for the Liverpool Ball. There were plans to have a complicated competition for King and Queen of the Winter, with us appearing in our finest ballgowns (or bikinis?), answering questions, and so on. Due to an interruption by the plague, all we're doing is going straight to the vote. Lots of lovely, accomplished, and well-known ladies entering - but, for some reason I totally fail to understand, I currently have 63% of the vote. Dunno what's going on there... but if I win, I'm welcoming people to the Ball, and leading the dancing. I just hope the King is someone nice... well, looking at the voting there, all the gents in the lead are people I like, so that's fine.

RK Pomes

Dec. 16th, 2007 07:26 pm
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
Winter Solstice festival in Lancaster, and I'm joining in a few of the competitions. One of them was to write a poem on the subject of winter in Lancaster. My muse, reliable as always, started off by producing a haiku. For Lancaster, in 1455. Great. :(

A Lancaster Inn.

Snow without: within,
the fire, mulled wine, and friendship
warm toes, heart, and soul

Well, the syllable count's right. I'm not convinced it gives the scene snapshot I'd have liked, and the "nature" reference is in the wrong place.

1455, haiku are not what we want. But the miniaturisation concept was still with me, and what appeared next was a pseudo-Celtic triad.

The Three Great Risings of Lancaster Feast:

The bread, before baking
The crowd, to greet their Duchess
Drunkard, from the tavern floor
But the Sun at its rising will be greater than the three

Three items, intended to work from greatest to least (1 and 2 are almost equal, here). "Drunkard" is a player who lives up to his name. I quite like this, but we're not in a Celtic area, and that isn't really poetry. So I went and looked up what poetry was around in 1455, and found someone who'd died in 1400 or thereabouts. Chaucer... When in Aprille.... It's not Aprille, it's December. It's not spring, it's winter. Zodiac references need changing, as does the name fo the wind. And they're not going on pilgrimage, it's a pub-crawl. (Taverns, in all three attempts? Yep. That's where most of the game's RPing takes place.) So we got the Lancaster Tales.

When that December with his cold so sore
November's fogs hath frozen to the core
And bathed every vein in such licour
Of which virtue engendered is the flower
When Boreus with his icy breath
Inspired hath in every holt and heath
The bare branches; and the old sun
From the Archer to the Goat hath run
And smalle beasts make nut trees bare
That sleepen all the winter in their lair
Like sleepy bears in their caverns
Then longe folke to go to taverns
And drinkers for to seek strange brands
To try their luck in sundry lands
And specially, from every shires' end
Of Engleand, to Lancaster they wend
The corn, and bread and meat for to seek
That them hath holpen, when that they were weak.

For once, I'm playing with rhyme as well as rhythm. The syllable count is the same as the original. The rhyming pattern is the same (though in some cases using different rhymes). I doubt if I'll win with this, no other reader is likely to know the original enough to compare (half of them probably haven't heard of Chaucer!) but I'm rather pleased with it.
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
I wonder where that phrase came from? Ivy's poisonous, isn't it?
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
Life in 1455 continues on its way, with a corn shortage (now overcome) threatening my piggies, playing poker in the taverns, chatting to travellers from distant lands (Cornwall!) fishing, some drama in the Lancaster Council, and playing Medieval Hangman in the forum. As a result of some chatting there, I've spent some Real Money and now have a title (it comes with an advert-free gaming experience and a few extra toys). I am now known as "Marya, Lady of the Flying Pigs".
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
Growing nicely. I'm not sure about the size descriptions, though. The oldest just went from "obese" to... well, take a look.
Read more... )
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
I have bought my second pig (thanks to those nice people who clicked the link and made this possible).
pig under here )

And, I am now a great deal stronger. There's a special offer going:
"Saturday, October 20th, 2007 : Rugby World Cup special discount !
To celebrate England's qualification in Rugby world cup finale, The Renaissance Kingdoms organize a special discount Saturday October 20th. All the day long, you will get 45 pounds when buying 30, 3 charisma, intelligence or strength points when buying 2,...."

I have no idea why a French game is celebrating an English rugby victory, but this is fine by me. I have bought myself some Game Tokens for about 10e, and spent them on Strength. Today's job hire is one that required high strength, and thus pays better: and I can do it!

I'm working on Marya's backstory. It was meant to be a few lines of description, but this is me....

here's that link again
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
Renaissance Kingdoms level-up happened overnight, and I now have a pretty little house, and a field with a pig in it. No picture of the house, but I do have a screen-shot of the field and the pig.
pig under here )
janewilliams20: (RK Marya)
Well, new to me. "Renaissance Kingdoms". It's about cooperation and economics rather than competition. It's free. It doesn't need much time online to play. No magic, unicorns, or elves, but pretty good on taverns and picnics. Sort of Far Isles on-line....

At the moment, I'm known as Marya, I'm a newly arrived vagrant in the little seaside town of Liverpool, and by tomorrow I hope to have my very own field, with a pig in it. More saving will allow me to purchase more pigs, and to feed them. (Wheat, cows, and other things were also options, but I'm going for pigs). But for now, I'm earning cash by working in other people's fields, and the mine, and for the Church (they don't pay well, but it gets you a good rep). And I've been sitting around in taverns chatting to friendly people, absorbing the local politics, and being bought drinks.

If you fancy a go, clicking this link will get you there and potentially get me some in-game cash.


janewilliams20: (Default)

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