...having been breathed out

Anglophile; lit- and writing-dork; dacshund owner; fanfic writer, Sherlock and otherwise; costume/clothing/design aficionada; former punk rocker; queer clotheshorse and anti-gastronome.


i havent rly taken any fuego/zamn selfies so far this year  ..so here are 7 random 1s of me with short hair. but different aesthetics tbh. from 2k14. god bless

[T]hree sociolinguists at the University of Texas at Austin […] “aimed to investigate how the frequency of filled pauses and discourse markers used in the English language varies with two basic demographic variables (gender and age) and personality traits.” The researchers explain that, to do this, they “focused on three common discourse markers … (I mean, you know, and like) and two filled pauses (uh and um).”

They recorded and transcribed interviews with the speakers, noted how often the speakers used so-called “discourse markers,” and concluded that these markers are, indeed, used most frequently by women and girls. More important, the study also shows that the use of the discourse markers is particularly common among speakers who score on a personality test as “conscientious”—“people who are more thoughtful and aware of themselves and their surroundings.” Discourse markers, far from being opaque, automatic, or zombie-like, show that the speaker has “a desire to share or rephrase opinions to recipients.” In other words, those “like”s are being used to register that what’s being narrated may not be utterly faithful to each detail—that it may not be, as a fourteen-year-old might say, “literally” true—but that it is essentially true, and, what’s more, that an innate sense of conscientiousness and empathy with the listener forbids the speaker from pretending to a more closely tuned accuracy than she in fact possesses. As one commenter on the paper writes,

The researchers believe the explanation is that “conscientious people are generally more thoughtful and aware of themselves and their surroundings,” and their use of discourse markers shows they have a “desire to share or rephrase opinions to recipients.” Stated slightly differently, discourse fillers are a sign of more considered speech, and so it makes sense that conscientious people use them more often.

Adam Gopnik, “The Conscientiousness of Kidspeak

The tone of the linked article strikes me as a little… I don’t know, glib or back-patting in a way New Yorker commentary often is; but the content is both interesting and Tumblr-relevant. Though I am cracking up that the legitimizing parallel Gopnik draws is to possibly my least favorite prose stylist in the American literary canon. Damn you, Henry James!





(Source: flickr.com)

A shame she couldn’t race him at it, really: Holmes. Given the same prize and the same course, surely she’d finish noses ahead; he was so wonderfully distractible. They could play it over the course of an evening, perhaps. Best four out of seven, choosing each others’ marks.

Summary: 1921. Sherlock hasn’t been to Paris since 1903; John since the War. At the request of Sherlock’s favourite cousin they cross the Channel, where they investigate a case nobody seems to want them on; do battle with the ghosts of their pasts; and make the acquaintance of a courtesan who seems different all the time, and is always different than she seems.

Otherwise subtitled, “Thinking about Death Is Uncomfortable; Let’s Fuck Instead.”

Pairings: John Watson/Sherlock Holmes, Irene Adler/OFC, John Watson/OMC, OC/OC, Moresomes

Rating: NC-17, all genders all positions, right away and on into the night. Also MIND THE WARNINGS.

Words: 58K total thus far; 5.5K this chapter (plus notes)

(Read from the beginning)


French photographer Florian Beaudenon's series Instant Life offers a voyeuristic peek into the homes and lives of different men, women, and families, inviting viewers to inspect their belongings and behaviors from a bird’s-eye view.

Sat shivering in the park, drowned in dreams and burning to be gone.
Samuel Beckett, from Krapp’s Last Tape  (via violentwavesofemotion)
hi, I'm in the planning stages of writing a historical novel set in 1930's/1940's Europe and one of my MC's is a bi man. I just read your excellent post on the history of lesbian and bisexual identities and I was wondering if you could offer me any reading suggestions about queer culture and identity in that time and especially about the identity of bi men? Because if the word bi wasn't in use, I don't want to pull a "he's gay who happens to like women too" and erase bisexuality in the story.


Hm hm hm… that’s tricky because honestly I don’t know a ton about European male bisexuality at that time, and frankly queer identities in Europe really varied by what country and exactly what year we’re talking about.  For example, the early 1930’s in Germany was one of the most tolerant places to be a queer man.  By the end of that decade, it was one of the worst as queer men and women were rounded up by the Nazis and shipped off to concentration camps.   By that point the word bisexual was starting to grow in prominence here in the US by the 40’s, so maybe if your characters are highly educated or interested in psychology they would know it.  But also Europeans were kinda busy with the whole World War II thing so I’m really not sure if the word bisexual would have been around.

I’d start with Christopher Isherwood’s Goodbye to Berlin (which is sometimes reprinted as part of The Berlin Stories) since that will give you Germany in the early 1930’s.   

The Two Hotel Francforts by David Leavitt is a historical fiction set in that same time period and place.  Maybe give it a read for a POV or see if he has a list of resources in the back of the book.  Hell, email him and see if he can point you in the right direction.   

You might also want to talk to the folks over at the Bi History Group on facebook.  Some of them are that old so they may remember and others have great brains for historical books, archives, and stories.  

Anyone else have any suggestions?

Good luck! 

- Sarah 

Reblogging this so that peninsulamamoenam sees it; she might have more specific suggestions, since 1930s queer Europe is kind of her bag.

My strategy whenever I’m researching for historical fiction is to read as many letters/diaries as possible from real people in the milieu I’m researching, and to notice how they themselves talk about the issues I’m interested in. How do they formulate (sexuality/nationality/identity/etc.) in their own voices when they’re talking to themselves (diaries) or their intimates (letters)? If there aren’t published letters/diaries available then biographies are a good source of snippets, but basically I’m always trying to get as close as possible to primary-source documents that are neither filtered through a modern lens, nor created with an eye toward the market.

For a European weathering the transition from the 1930s to WWII in Europe, in addition to Isherwood I might look at whether there are published letters/diaries from Jane and/or Paul Bowles (a married and sexually involved but non-monogamous American expat couple who were primarily interested in same-sex partners), Thomas Mann, Erika &/or Klaus Mann, Annemarie Schwarzenbach, WH Auden… whether or not all these folks would be considered “bisexual” in modern parlance, queer circles beget queer communities and all communities beget gossip, so you can bet they were talking about folks who would be. 

Anyway, good luck!


Quvenzhané Wallis on set while shooting the new Fall/Winter campaign for Armani Junior 2014 (video).



Tullio Crali, The Strength of the Curve, 1930. Italy. Via flickr

Oh. My God. I need to lie down. TAG YOUR PORN.



Tullio Crali, The Strength of the Curve, 1930. Italy. Via flickr


Oh. My God. I need to lie down. TAG YOUR PORN.



hiddenlacuna replied to your photo: “Garden party at my folks’: a picture’s worth a thousand words edition”:
Dahling, is that a Diane von Furstenberg?

Ahahahaha well spotted, old thing! From just the straps and neckline too, I’m ever so impressed!


One of my biggest pet peeves about writing advice these days is the complete war on adjectives.

You know, I get it, I really get it—lots of writers go through the purple prose-y ADJECTIVES EVERYWHERE phase and it can be embarrassing and cringe-worthy to recall that phase.  But the complete vendetta against adjectives and adverbs drives me absolutely insane, and all it’s part of is pushing writing to be more and more Hollywood Action Thriller Script.

I’ve seen it said frequently that if a line of dialogue needs an adjective or adverb to clarify how the character is saying it, then it’s not a clear enough line of dialogue.  And to an extent I do agree with that, but sometimes—sometimes dialogue is not the most important aspect of a story (or specific scene/part of a story).  Sometimes the dialogue present is not meant to be heard in the readers’ heads as a movie script.  Sometimes the dominant mode of conveyance for plot and information come from introspection, POV character narration, narrator narration, and more.

If you can’t describe what’s going on in your story, then you can’t tell your story.

And if you can’t tell your story, that’s not helpful writing advice.

Amen, sister.

Sunday (more than) Six!

Teaser for Chapter 9 of A hundred hours, which is going up on Tuesday:

'What happened?' said Claudine, at last.

He shook his head. Gestured, vaguely, toward the sea.

'There was,' she said, 'a cat?'

'I patted it,' Sherlock agreed.

'And then?'

'It ran off.' Waving his hand. 'Into the night.'


Claudine’s voice was bent back wrong. Sentiment: anxious. Heartbroken. Only, Sherlock had gone for a swim. He had patted a cat. He hadn’t laughed so hard in weeks.

'All right,' he said. His voice, lately of London, ought to sound just so. 'Tell me about you and Madame Jouvenel.'


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