[Gossamer's Scrapbook] The Ethereal Canyon II

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The player scrapbooks forum is literally a place for writers to warm-up, brainstorm, keep little scraps of notes, or just post things to encourage themselves and each other. Each player can feel free to create their own thread - one per account - and use them accordingly.

[Gossamer's Scrapbook] The Ethereal Canyon II

Postby Gossamer on May 10th, 2022, 1:15 am

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Obligatory Introduction


I originally started this scrap Sat Feb 13, 2010 1:13 pm. It's now Monday, May 9th, 2022. My original scrap has 210 pages and is bugging out now when I add new posts to it... so I'm moving on and doing a part II. There was no cause for it to be bugging other than I suspect it's just flat out too long. That's a lot of pages and even more words.

In twelve years, I've had a lot to say over time. And because it's been bugging lately, I haven't wanted to screw it over and lose its content... so I've been holding off posting.

Maybe starting a new part II version will result in finally getting more scraps up. More scraps mean that in the future I can go back and maybe review the next ten years and see where the memories take us on Mizahar. I'm excited. We're actually busy again, after a dry spell, and I feel like getting new storytellers and new players mean we will have even more stories to tell and thus to read. Busy is relative. But this is 2022 and nothing is 'normal' anymore in the world. So I'm okay with what I label as busy.


Vital Statistics


  • Age: Older Than You
  • Sex: Female
  • Status: Married
  • Nationality: American - Bannock Shoshone and Manx
  • Location: Washington State
  • Likes: Well-developed characters, dark fantasy, pushing limits, draft & sport horses, skillful writing, arts, crafts, fishing, rednecks, epic plotlines, chickens, Western riders
  • Dislikes: Arrogant people, lazy writers (bad grammar, spelling, etc), bleeding heart liberals, English riders, people who ask 'does Mizahar have guns?', and terms like Mary Sue!

Rules


  • Post At Will - I don't mind hearing your thoughts.
  • No Whining About Me - You don't have to read this Scrapbook if you don't want to! Feel free to whine about the things I whine about, but don't whine about me unless it's in your own scrap.
  • No Spam - Commenting is not spam. Spam is spam. Understand the difference!
  • Images - Great pictures are appreciated. Art you made yourself earns your bonus points. Showing off others' art without a point or permission is just lame.
  • The Rules - Are subject to change at any moment.


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[Gossamer's Scrapbook] The Ethereal Canyon II

Postby Gossamer on May 10th, 2022, 4:22 am

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Write What You Love


Sometimes writing is like baking cookies. You might know how to bake, but unless you are totally vested in what you are doing, will your cookies be totally awesome? Maybe? But honest? Probably not.

If you hate raisins and think they are the miniature turds of Satan, then your oatmeal raisin cookies might not taste up to par. Why? Because half of the baking is putting emotion, feeling, and passion into what you are crafting.

If your head is filled up to the brim with the love of chocolate chip… maybe that’s what you should bake. Because as you bake it, all that love will leak out, expose itself to the batter, and then someone will sample that particular batch of cookies and sense the wow factor in them without knowing why two different cooks making the exact same recipe can make them taste so vastly different.

I’m one of those hopeless people that often has her head in the clouds and would rather be doing anything than what I’m usually currently doing. Sometimes that’s loading the dishwasher, sometimes that’s standing in the shower trying to wake up. Lately, for me, that’s been at work not actually being invested in the act of working. In a way, I’m lucky. Being a dreamer, I have a rather mindless job that allows me to dream all day and blast various music or play audiobooks to entertain me endlessly while I’m working. I think that’s why I can put in the incredible hours I do and still mostly smile at the end of the day.

I think we all dream of doing what we love, but its rare that we actually find ourselves in the position of that coveted position in life. Even if we achieve it, would a job we do for money ever be total pleasure? I often wonder if people that achieve lofty positions are satisfied. I suspect they are as restless as we underlings are. And once they’ve climbed that mountain they took all that time climbing, it wasn’t nearly as rewarding as they thought it would be. That’s my guess.

It’s formed from personal experience.

Wildlife biology was that for me. I loved the idea of it. I loved climbing the mountain. But once the mountain was climbed and I was firmly in the field, it sucked beyond measure because wild things always lose in the face of economics and finance. There is no literal way to get around the power of money and the greed of humanity. Morals go completely out the window.

“The Right Thing” doesn’t exist.

And so, I feel like those at the top of the mountain lie. They plaster on smiles and keep everyone fooled. They go through the motions. They tell themselves its fine… they love it… life is great. But I think deep down they know the truth. Even people that don’t work, who are fortunate enough to be independently wealthy and don’t have to do something to put food on the table struggle.

I really believe that.

It's why humans invent hobbies and try new things, and are constantly exploring or traveling or dreaming. Most of us don’t have an ‘enough’ line in the sand where we cross it and become immediately content.

I know that line doesn’t exist for me.

So, I try new things; new hobbies. And one of those golden hobbies for me is writing. It’s a mountain I stand beneath and stare up at and think… “I could be a published author!” But I don’t really want that. Why? Because I’m afraid it will lose its glory like everything else in my life I have tried and grew bored of once I understood and had an insight. So instead, I cherish writing and strive for something different than climbing its mountain.

I live for the writer’s high. You’ve heard about it in runners, but it's very real for writers too.

What is a Writer’s High?

It’s that incredible zone you get into writing where I can lose myself for hours on end, immersed at the moment. It’s that zone where my fingers are moving mindlessly across the keyboard reacting to synapses firing in my brain. My happy juices are flowing because of all the endorphins my brain is mass producing and flooding my body with while I’m extremely inspired.

I live for those moments. I love those moments. I would honestly probably kill (fictional characters … honestly stop thinking I’m declaring myself a serial killer) for those moments without regret as long as the victims are douchbags.

I haven’t had a lot of those moments lately.

I’ve had a lot of good writing partners, but writing has honestly felt like a chore in recent times. The bold truth is that writing is hard work. You have to be creative and imaginative. You have to juggle facts and figures and seem smart without being preachy. You have to reach through the page and drag the reader in so they forget they are reading something and instead are immersed in a story they feel like they are living.

Good writing always trumps movies for that very reason. It's nearly impossible to paint a scene visually for an audience that eclipses what a creative imaginative soul can dream up in their minds.

Sadly, I think the majority of the people in the world are stunted or completely dead in their ability to imagine things. Many folks have stopped reading in favor of audiobooks or binge-watching TV series. The reason I think that is because so often if one creative crafty imaginative soul meets another, sparks fly, and the writing can be really good. I have multiple thread partners currently that do that for me in various forms and functions.

But I have other thread partners that don’t read what I write, don’t imagine the scene, and get completely lost in their responses… which makes me stare at their posts and not want to reply. And lately the unimaginative have far outweighed the imaginative.

I probably shouldn’t outright say that. I don’t want to give anyone a complex. If you are reading this and thinking I’m talking about you stunting the growth on my imagination, then you are probably wrong. Why? People that give a shit are dreamers. Those are the people that imagine things and buoy others up through their writing. The other sort… the sort I don’t want to write with… just tend to suck their partners dry. It's like they’ve found a long-lost fountain of imagination, and drink from it until the fountain runs dry rather than add to it in a hundred thousand different ways.

We all have those ' stare at the blank screen’ moments and shake our heads and mourn the loss of something we can’t put a finger on. But I’ll tell you what it is. It’s the lack of the writer’s zone. It’s the lack of having a drive and motivation to make something happen. We all want to reply and blink and have it be three thousand words later and no idea how we had that much to say.

I’m one of those writers that have a full head. There is a ton of shit knocking around in my skull that will kill me if it doesn’t leak out down through my hands and into my fingers and ultimately onto a page. I think it’s the artist in me. There is beauty and wonder and color and magic in my brain that fills it overfull and makes me almost shut down until I do some writing or art. And when I’m invested at that moment - in that writer’s zone – my writing is easy and my vision is clear. The rest of the time, the pictures I can paint with words are blurry and lack that spark that writer’s zones bring.

I suspect that’s one of the reasons I love fountain pens so much. I love any sort of quality writing instrument, a good set of paints, or a new box of high-end oil pastels or colored pencils. I see a release in them. I see the incredible potential. I fill books and books with writing and art. And I feel better for a while. I see a way to help things escape, through supplies or places like Mizahar, that are living in my brain. I tried meditation and emptying my mind. It works for the duration of the meditation, but an hour afterward, things start trickling back in and I’m soon full up all over again.

We are all, in the end, creatures of our hearts. Those blasted organs beat hard and fierce in our chests and demand everything and give very little room to wiggle among those demands. Someone once said write what you know. I think that’s bullshit. I think we should all write what we love. We don’t have to be murderers, for example, or even have first-hand experience to write about murder. Passion of any kind breeds authenticity. It always has and it always will.

It turns out, that sometimes your imagination is more effective than all the research in the world. You can research a topic to death. For me, Beekeeping comes to mind. I was an expert in Beekeeping before I ever got any bees. And what did the bees teach me? I didn’t know shit about bees. True story. It turns out bees don’t read and they tend not to do anything other beekeepers say they will. They vary drastically from hive to hive and it's incredibly interesting to dig into them and learn about each and every queen and the way she runs her world.

Trust me, that’s not in the books.

And all the research in the world couldn’t have made me write accurately about bees until I experienced them. But before I experienced them, my imagination filled in so many primal blanks and I wrote about them with a passion that bordered on truth. I would have never sold anyone on the idea that imagination was closer to reality than the reality I would come to know through research. But in casting the research aside, and experiencing the true existence of bees, I learned my imagination was far closer than any of the beekeeper books I read throughout my learning.

Crazy huh?

I think people that play with weapons as a passion come to understand this intuitively. There’s no manual on the use of daggers, for example, that will give you the kind of respect you can come to know actually handling a blade. And what happens when you add in magic, sentience, and things like Vorilescence? Reality can’t touch those things and you have to fall back on your imagination which makes them… truly beautiful.

So write what you love. Write what makes you happy and has filled up your brain to overflowing. When you feel that post-thanksgiving-like bloat in your consciousness that dammed up writers get… get out your keyboard, fill up your favorite fountain pen with a beloved ink, or prime all your dried watercolors and start working on that process of transfer. Make it a labor of love again.

Demand your cookies. And be specific. Do you want shortbread? Chocolate chip? Some sort of fancy almond melt-away? Channel it. Don’t give a shit what type of cookies anyone else wants. Craft the type you want and love. Bake your batches to suit you. And when you are sufficiently empty again, able to breathe, then write for others a bit.


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[Gossamer's Scrapbook] The Ethereal Canyon II

Postby Gossamer on May 13th, 2022, 4:20 am

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One Thing


Life has handed out a few lessons lately. Most of those lessons have involved taking on too many things or setting my expectations too high. A lot of this is work-related, but a lot of it is health-related too. I passed a milestone this week. I got through a physical that I have failed in the past. In fact, I and a work buddy went together with the same absolute nail grinding expectation of failure and we both passed with flying colors. We celebrated together with a mutual day off and a lot of smiles and secret laughs were exchanged while both waiting and both taking the tests.

The USA's Department of Transportation puts a lot of expectations these days on Truckers. And since I have to have a CDL to perform my job due to the technical specs of my vehicle... my beloved goat... I have to qualify with the same standards as a normal driver. I have to be able to haul the same length, width, weight, and air break systems that big trucks do, even though I never leave the yard. And occasionally they let me out of the yard with a tractor-trailer to do a run when a driver fails to show up for work for whatever reason.

BP, sugars, heart rates, hearing, eyesight, and overall conditions... they even measure our goddamn necks and can fail us if our neck girth is wider than a certain amount of inches. They won't pass us at that point unless we undergo around a 3K out-of-pocket sleep study to determine if we get enough quality sleep at night or not.

And then if we can't pass the sleep study they make us go on a CPAC machine and get our data downloaded daily to make sure we are wearing the machine at least 6-7 hrs a night. They whisper at us, ask us all kinds of questions about colors and numbers in colors and make us walk a straight line and dance, and bend over and look at our backs. Girls get the whole ovary feel-ups, and it goes on and on. If our muscles twitch, our reflexes fail, or anything is out of wack, we can flunk the DOT Physical. If we flunk, we are out of a job.

Soooo many drivers flunk these days. Most of them flunk over that stupid sleep study. Most can't afford the 3k plus it costs to get one to then requalify for their CDL's. And if we don't pass that physical, the DOT pulls our license and we can't even drive our personal rigs. You have 100 year old nut cases out there on the road driving their pickups and Studebakers, yet we can't drive our own rigs if we have a big neck? Okay...

My neck size is fine... in case you were wondering. But I have always had a tall elegant neck. Those that have to take a DOT physical curse me for it. And yet they wonder why I always put my hair up in a bun for my physical... jerkfaces, its to show off my neck!

All I have to say is this test is stress stress stress... and I passed with flying colors. It's a huge pain in the ass. And I hadn't realized how close to cracking I have been since this test was looming... and how relieved I felt afterward.

When I get nervous, upset, angsty, etc... I will do ANYTHING to distract myself from whatever is looming that's bothering me. Gillar always tells me... "Stop Worrying About It" I want to punch him in the nose when he says that. If I could stop worrying about things, wouldn't I? I mean come on. He claims everything always works out in the end... and you know what? He's right. But do you know why? It works out because someone like me has worried and saved and done the right thing with foresight and planning in order to make sure when terrible things happen, everything is okay.

Thats why when bad things happen, shit turns out okay in the end.

I'm not sure where I was going with this scrap. I know where I started, but I'm so far off the main highway of my thought process that I might not get around to making an actual point.

Screw it. I can make an actual point. Stress shuts people down. Stress criples your ability to cope with things. Stress affects my writing and turns it into absolute crap. Stress freezes me up and makes me feel so overwhelmed that I don't know where to start on p projects or how to even remotely get my to-do list done.

And believe me, as a die-hard Virgo I always have a to-do list a million miles long. That being said, someone gave me some advice not very long ago from that time pre-covid before the world was crazy that I've lived by since... and I wanted to share it with you.

It's really simple advice. But it has made such a huge encouraging impact in my life, especially in those times I've shut down. I don't want to shut down, but oftentimes - especially as I've gotten older - I have to and don't have a choice.

The advice is about the best thing someone ever said to me. She told me...

"Jen, if you can't complete the to-do list... that's okay. If you can't do the whole project... that's fine. Just do one thing. And once that one thing is done, do something else. Keep doing one thing and then one more thing, then one more thing... and pretty soon you'll get to see some progress and things will get done."

So when I come home tired, bitchy, exhausted, or even log onto Miz with a hundred things to do... I tell myself... "Just do one thing, Jen. Start with one thing, then it's not completely a useless endeavor. Do one more thing once the first thing is done... then do yet another thing if you have energy left..."

That advice is so solid. I use it in almost every moment of my life. Do I have a big cleaning job at home? Say the kitchen needs a complete deep cleaning and I don't have the energy to do it... just clean one counter. Just wipe off the table. Just do a quick mop of the floor. One thing. Just do one thing.

It's the same idea of not looking at the whole of a project, but breaking it down into smaller chunks you can easily achieve... the small things add up to a huge thing.

Believe me.

I've seen the truth in this over and over. It's why I get things done. It's why I tend not to use excuses. In the end, there will be posts, there will be calendars put up, there will be progress. It might not be the progress I want, but it will be at least one thing.
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[Gossamer's Scrapbook] The Ethereal Canyon II

Postby Gossamer on May 25th, 2022, 5:39 pm

Backed In A Corner
And coming out swinging...?

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This is probably going to be a long rambling scrap. I have a lot on my mind. And if I use something that happened between me and you as an example, its not personal. It's an example.

There was one thing that the other Founders used to tell me that still remains true to this day. They used to say 'be friendly' but 'don't make friends' with people you role play with. I didn't understand that concept because I tend to be the one that feels like when you write collaboratively with someone, you get to know them - at least as much as you can through their writing - and to remain uninvested is you yourself missing out on a whole vast set of opportunities to learn new things, grow, change, and become more as a person than you would have if you lacked those experiences.

Gillar rarely comes to chat for that reason. He doesn't like the distraction and doesn't enjoy the banter that sometimes happens. I love it. I like hearing about people's lives and their day-to-day. It just makes things more interesting to me. This is weird, because of the two of us, I'd definitely say he's the more social one than I am. It's fine, not being social, and I understand those who aren't. He doesn't like people, and neither do I. Not inherently, really, past the rare select few we decide to nurture friendships with IRL. Those people are ride or die, but they can be as annoying as everyone else long-term.

I think Covid showed that to us when Matt and I were both at work and every single one of our casual friends were home for more than a year with full pay plus hug weekly bonuses (+ $600 a week here in WA state) that didn't equate to our OT at all. Want to know fun? Be at work 24/7 for almost two years and have your friends bitch at you constantly that you never have time to go do things with them or see them. Watch them buy new boats, new cars, and horses, remodel their homes, have immaculate yards, grow enormous gardens, etc all because they are bored. Then listen to them complain that your yard is overgrown etc. Then listen to them complain of the sheer boredom. Then listen more to them complain about how rough they have it and why can't you come to spend time with them?

I'm in WA state, even with the state completely shut down, there's tons of recreation and fun to do around here that doesn't require things to be open. So that means there's a ton of fun to be had at any given moment... Covid or not. And then have those same friends call you boring because all you want to do on your day off is be home and relax because you working 12 hr shifts six days a week. Fucking FANTASTIC FUN. And then lets talk about having Covid be over, but you have to keep doing it because no one will take a job. That's even more fun, right there. Especially when your paycheck gets drastically cut because state taxes got up 300% mostly due to out-of-control state spending on Unemployment Benefits. The truth is now coming out that our taxes are so high because of so much fraud. Well, duh. No one in the state had Covid but was getting lavish payouts by the state to stay home and fuck around. And on top of that, the state was sending millions out of state monthly to foreign bodies as unemployment that either didn't exist or were not state citizens.

See why I write so much? It's an outlet for my own baggage, which is a lot of resentment toward the State Government here and the fact that my IRL friends can be somewhat douchebaggery and thoughtless. Yea. I have a little friend hate going on because honestly, the last year-plus has shown me just how wrapped up my friends are in their own lives and how blissfully ignorant and shallow they can be to someone who's obviously overworking and can't do anything about it.

Did they offer to come over and help me with yardwork? Nope.

I mean... sure I can show up to your unsanctioned party and bring the main course dish because you don't like to cook but like to party? When would I have time to make it? No I don't want to go hiking, fishing, camping, trail riding, etc etc etc. I'm usually too damn tired. Why? Because I'm at work like a real person, not at home like some social service leech.

It makes me totally miss my besties who are both way too far away ... one in Florida and one on the Or border. Neither of them locked down. Both worked through Covid. They always have worked hard and been just champions. I think that's why were are besties.

And then there's my health. It's not fantastic. It's not bad. I just have a blood disorder that makes me constantly exhausted if I can't get my iron up and maintain it. It almost killed me before I got it diagnosed and under control. So I know about long term disease. I also have RA pretty bad, and sometimes my knee hurts so bad it doesn't want to straighten or bend. But that's a tale for another day.

And no I don't want to quit my job either. I've been there fifteen years, get insane amounts of vacation, a phenomenal hourly wage, and all the OT I think I don't want. I have a really decent boss, and great coworkers, and I like what I do.

So what's the point of this scrap?

I find that people drag a lot of baggage around and for whatever reason, they can't seem to offload it IRL, but they can online to strangers. I know I do my fair share of dragging baggage around, but I think the difference is that the baggage that affects me most here is the online baggage I've accumulated on Miz over the years.

So TLDR: I'm busy girl. I'm a person with health issues too. I work insane amounts. I still have time to write. Writing brings me a lot of pleasure. I love building a character up. I love the details involved in doing that. I find skill-building a challenge, and I love the story. I live for the story.

If you decide to come to play here... that's fine. You are welcome to take whatever you want from Miz. You honestly get out of it what you put into it.

But if yo decide to come here, play, take up a lot of my time, and become someone I care about.... be aware I expect you to see things through. That's not a hard or unreasonable expectation. I don't want to hear your excuses about time, energy, health, mental state, etc. Do or don't do. But don't promise to do and not follow through.

That makes you a shitty person.

Don't swear to me you'll not ever leave, drop things on a dime, and make me care about you. Don't let me weave your character in with mine, then leave anyhow and think I'll be okay with it. I'm not. I'm not ever okay with it. Would you be? No. Stop saying you'd understand. Because after about the tenth person that lied like this, you wouldn't be. And you are one of the biggest problems that cause me to treat returning players with indifference or a grain of salt, especially if they want to constantly start fresh and take up a lot of my time.

The fucks I have to give have been given out and the fucks to give battery is out of juice.

Don't vanish, return a few months later, only to point out the obvious that you've vanished and that you won't be back for a while, and say you hope you are welcomed back when you come. Well, sure, you'll be welcomed back, but not in my life and not in my circle. Go RP in someone else's circle that won't give a shit about you and that you can't hurt by whatever you want to blame your inability to write on.... yea... illness, and Miz being a huge time waster or whatever.

I say to you now... Fuck off. Seriously. Don't make promises and then break them multiple times. Make promises in your life and FUCKING MEAN THEM. Then see them through. It's adulting at its finest. Try it. It will help you sleep at night.

Being friends with people leaves me in a shitty position, honestly. If I tell someone about all my personal baggage... say someone that doesn't know because they weren't here to experience it with me first hand. They'll write anything off I do as 'baggage' rather than actually think maybe it's something they _are_ doing to create more baggage.

So here's the difference.

Here's what the other Founders were saying. If you aren't friends with someone, but are just friendly instead, when you reach out to them to get them to do something in the game a bit differently... then they take it like it was intended and just make the corrections without giving it a thought. They tend to think you are a great person, dedicated, intelligent, and they never get to know the real you.

If you are friends with them... and you reach out to tell them something... it never goes well. It NEVER EVER goes well. Something simple like... "Can you add more detail in describing your skill use so you can get XP awarded for it..." will backfire terribly? The knee-jerk reaction tends to be bad. I'm not judging your character. I'm not attacking you. I'm not attacking your writing, dialog, plot, etc. I'm just wanting you to get XP for things you are doing.

I really want people to SHOW not TELL.

So basically, if you befriend someone, you are backed into a corner. If you do tell them they need to fix or change something, you run a high risk of hurting their feelings. If you don't tell them, they get equally upset with the whole 'Well, why didn't you tell me?" situation. So your damned if you do or damned if you don't.

What do I consider a good reaction?

"Sure, cool. I can do that! Thanks for saying something." Yea. That's my future personal bestie online to-perfect-to-exist friend.

And what do I consider a bad reaction? Rather than hearing you out, they simply say they'll delete whatever the topic is rather than correct it. They think that's a fix. That means they didn't hear you in the first place. When I say something like... "Can you add more detail so you SHOW rather than TELL?" That isn't me saying 'delete that, it's crap'... it's me saying I want you to get a lot of XP and I cant give you XP if you don't write more detail.

The whole point of MIz is to WRITE SHIT. It's not to DELETE SHIT. And I probably lost a friend online here because I asked them that very thing yesterday and it didn't go well. And now I probably won't hear from them again... just like the friend that promised to be here, promised to be involved no matter what... and went back on that promise.

I take promises seriously. I don't want to not be able to tell people things. But when I get reactions like that... how can even remotely communicate with them that way? I can't. They say it's emotion or baggage or whatever. What it just simply equates to is frustration at them for not understanding or reading my writing for what it is at face value.... "Please add more detail." Simple enough. I'm a Keep It Simple Stupid fan. I get frustrated at over-reactions, rather than a simple what I consider 'reasonable' reactions.

And you know what? I shouldn't care. I really shouldn't. But as much as I dislike people, they still continuously surprise me. They really do... and not always in a bad way.

I had a really terrible weekend.

I would have to say it was about the worst weekend of my life. And honestly, at my age, I've had some really bad ones. When I say I had a family emergency, I can't say that hard enough or big enough or long enough. And of course, it seems like when I have emergencies in my life, it all is out there publically. This was no exception.

I guess I'm trying to talk about this without talking about this... if that makes any sense at all.

And what having this emergency taught me was that there are some really great people still left in my life. My across-the-street neighbor was an absolutely amazing wall of strength this weekend. She was there for me, ride or die style, and she's like 80 years old. There were some professionals in the community that dropped everything on a dime to come help. The neighbor that surrounds me on three sides answered the phone on the first ring and listened for two minutes before she said 'Anything you need, Jen. Anything.' And believe me, I took a mile... not an inch... because I needed a mile.

And one of my bee buddies reached out, hearing through the community grape vine I was having problems and got me in contact with someone who could also help with said problems. And when I talked to the buddy of the buddy, he quickly realized he actually couldn't help because the emergency was too big and too much for him to handle.

But, in the spirit of this great little tiny town I live in, my buddy's buddy had a neighbor that did have what I needed, was retired, and was more than willing to help. One more phone call later, he was unloading at my house and him and my husband were doing vodka shots in the driveway after the job was done. They stayed out there drinking for hours, and Matt got sunburned like you wouldn't believe.

He's still sick from it and has a nasty cold.

I even had the sheriff at my house over this whole thing. Someone called them out. And within five minutes of talking to me, he was backing away with his hands up and then on his firearm, telling me everything was fine and that he was sorry he disturbed me, etc. It helped that my 80 year old neighbor started bullying him to leave me alone.... from her porch, across the street, in her see-through nighty in the middle of the day without her teeth.

Linda Linda Linda... you are ride or die, woman.

I hope we can laugh about this in a few years. None of us are going to forget it. Nor the fact that you called me in the middle of the afternoon the next day and asked me to meet you halfway between your house and mine that you had something for me.... and when I claimed I would need five minutes, I wasn't wearing a bra and had just cutoffs and a tank top on... and you saying bullshit get going because you just were still in your nighty and wasn't changing for the event.

Of course, everyone drove by while we were hugging tearfully in the middle of the street. I hope someone took pics and it goes up on the community FB page.... if it's not already there by now. I want my coworkers to see that I had way too much fun on my vacation. Thanks for saying I looked skinny. I love you.

The point of this scrap? Well, its probably the same point they all have. Brain dump for my own memory in the future. It might be a little of why I'm off my game so much. It might be a bit of why I extended out the weekend contest. It might be a lot of 'people suck'. And it might be me desperately trying to decide if online friendships are worth it or not. I never asked to have a lot of control over situations here. I just worked my ass off on Mizahar so I would have a place to write where I wanted to that suited my personality and style.

I hope you like it too. And I hope whomever you are reading this understands that people are human, beautifully flawed, and need you to cut them some slack once in a while. Don't be that person that quits the game because someone disagreed with you. Don't start your sentences out with 'This is not a big deal...." and really it is a big deal. If you can fix something quietly without fuss, its best to do that.... because honestly, the fuss is never worth it. You accomplish nothing making a fuss. I don't accomplish anything fussing either. I still need to decide if I create bigger monsters by gently reminding people to do things the right way or by letting them go until they are power gaming right and left and the mod of the area kicks them out of their domain because they are so terrible... because EVERY time that's whats happened if I haven't stepped in early and said... "Can you make this change?".

Fuck if I know. Peopling is hard. Adulting is easier. If people Adulted more, then I could People less and it would be a great world to live in.

I guess my TLDR takeaway is...

  1. Cut mods and supervisors here some slack. React gently.
  2. If your neighbor has a meltdown total family emergency and you can step up and help out, step up and help out. They will love you forever and it builds a strong irl community.
  3. Stop and ask yourself if you can do anything yourself, don't call the Sherriff.
  4. Old ladies are fierce.



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[Gossamer's Scrapbook] The Ethereal Canyon II

Postby Gossamer on June 3rd, 2022, 5:11 am

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Covid Round Two... Or Not?


I'm just letting everyone know I'm on Covid round two (maybe?) and probably the sickest I've ever been in a long time. That monster cold turned deep dark and sinister fairly fast. You'd think getting Omicron would have prevented this round, but evidently, Covid doesn't give a shit if you've already had it. I'm coughing, hacking, blowing my nose like mad, and my lungs are clogged. I have the brain fuzz from hell and I can't think straight to save my life. I get really hard sweats and boughts of fever. This round started with a sore throat, bad earache, and exhaustion. It gets worse from there.

My brain is numb. I barely got the calendar up for Syka. I'll try to get everyone paid jobs as soon as possible and get the coupons handed out for the Syka Requirements. I'll help you all with story ideas if I can. But don't expect me at 100% and don't expect me to be all chatty in chat. I'm pretty much hanging on by a thread.

And in all this, I'm still trying to go to work. I made it one hour today, but I'm going back in for tomorrow. I called in Monday, made it all day Tues and Weds, and crashed and burned for Thurs. Yea I know. But heh, this is 'Merica and no one gives a shit about Covid anymore. It's 'get your ass to work' or else. So I'm doing 8 hrs tomorrow and seeing the doctor after work. We'll see how well I do. I'm on for the weekend too. So go me.

Anyhow, just letting everyone know where I am at irl. I'm not ignoring anyone deliberately. I'm just feeling like absolute crap.

EDIT: Today I went to the doctor... took a rapid Covid Test... came back negative. The Doctor says I have pneumonia... and not the fun kind. It's filled up both my lungs nearly 3/4's and I'm on two powerful antibiotics and a steroid now. So I should be well on the mend with no more shakes, sweats, brain fog, and hacking coughs.

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[Gossamer's Scrapbook] The Ethereal Canyon II

Postby Gossamer on June 22nd, 2022, 2:33 pm

Pearls Of Wisdom

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Sometimes even I need reminding...


Me: I hate this plot/thread/pc. I can't write for it.
Also Me: Then it's the wrong plot/thread/pc. Listen to yourself.

Change Your Direction


  1. Write something that comes easier so you don't end up writing nothing at all. Something is always better than nothing. Get words on a page and don't let them stay locked in your mind.
  2. Don't let someone tell you one of your threads are not valid, unneeded, or without worth. That is especially true if they think the purpose of your thread is invalid. It's not. Plots can change on a dime and turn out to be something utterly different than people assumed or planned.
  3. Fuck the neg nellys anyhow. Mostly they are people who are secretly rotting inside and seek to spread their unhappiness to others.
  4. Timestamps rule. If something happens after a later Timestamp in an earlier Timestamp.. the later Timestamp can get negated. That's why you never count you chick's before they hatch. You can change the future.


DON'T FORGET THIS.

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[Gossamer's Scrapbook] The Ethereal Canyon II

Postby Gossamer on June 27th, 2022, 1:48 pm

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Very wise words...

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This is relevant for me today.



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[Gossamer's Scrapbook] The Ethereal Canyon II

Postby Gossamer on July 5th, 2022, 11:59 pm

Non-Thinkers verses Overthinkers

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I'll be honest. I suspect the world is full of non-thinkers. I see people stumble through the world, turning a blind eye, pretending things aren't happening that are happening. They parrot back information without doing their own research or they think whatever they google is the ultimate authority on something. Pro Tip: Google is biased. Google is political. Google has an agenda. Don't use google. I also think these are the same people who don't put much thought into retirement or save for the future so they don't have to work into their elderly years. They assume they wont' live that long or they will be taken care of.

They are the same people that grow up on social services - free lunch, free gas, free car maintenance, free cell phones, free food, reduced or fixed rent, and they don't work because they don't want too... under the guise of 'they can't'. They don't tend to vote. They don't tend to get involved with their communities. They don't own guns. They don't own pickup trucks. They don't own property or land... they rent.

Yea... I'm all kinds of biased aren't I? Get used to it. The world is full of us.

I have the exact opposite problem. I overthink everything. I worry. I fuss. I make plans for things going south fast. I save. I invest. I get involved. I do in-depth research. My curiosity knows know bounds. If I don't know about something, I do what I can to find out what I can about it. I own guns. I own property. I work - a lot - and pay for everything in my life. I've never even drawn unemployment. I don't have to get checks from the government. I have been involved in my own community circles... usually pagan and native situations.

My husband always says that "Why bother? Why worry? Things will work out in the end." The frustrating part of that is yes, they do often work out, but they do so because he has a worrier and planner by his side that has thought through all the contingencies and has planned ahead to make sure things work. I have a what-if scenario laid out in my mind and am five steps ahead of shit falling apart when it does.

I make the phone calls. I sit down and figure out the logistics. I do the heavy brain lifting. I juggle the numbers and often come up with the cash. It's my unwanted gift in life.

I'll admit there are times we've had no plan and still managed to stumble through the hard times. I'm grateful for that happening, but it's the exception, not the rule. The rule is: Overthink it. Plan ahead. Be prepared.

We overthinkers are often ridiculed, put down, and mocked. But the truth is, we are the reason shit works out. It's not some happenstance, toss of a coin, or luck. We make our own luck by being diligent. We push through. We stay the course. We get things done. And we overthink everything. No stone gets unturned, no situation is uncateloged. We make boxes in our minds, check them off one by one, and organize people, places, and things into categories of all kinds depending upon our individual personalities.

I refuse to handle your assumptions that I know what you are up to or what you want, your suggested half-assed attempts to mansplain things, nor am I going to sense your needs and fulfill them like some goddamn fairy godmother. I'm not anyone's fairy godmother.

This quote above really struck home for me. What might be obvious to you, for me is something I've flow charted, graphed out, brainstormed and mind mapped with interconnected bubbles. You can assume I am on the same page as you are in terms of something, but that is likely as far from the truth as possible. I'm all over the place with things. One comment? I might read a hundred things into it. One in-depth explanation... are you explaining something as it really is or as you think I want to hear it? I will be analyzing the possibilities of both of those things and assigning some sort of likelihood to them. You can be sure of it.

A good friend of mine and I were discussing this today. We are both overthinkers and it's a habit that's never steered us wrong. It's always been the bane of our existence too. I think this is why my friend and I get along so well. We spell things out clearly for each other and support each other in a way I know that what she says she means absolutely and isn't just giving something lip service.

Lip Service. People do that, you know, so often and so frequently. And they do it poorly at that, 99% of the time. People like myself and my friend can usually - not always - see right through it. And in our professions we see it happen day by day, week by week, over and over again by the same people.

So... what is the point of this scrap? If you need something from me.... be specific. I'm not into guessing games. I'm not into games at all. I'll see games in everything though. I even see things in silence. Just approach me flat out, request or talk frankly about whatever it is you want to have a chat about, and we'll go from there.

I'm Goss. Just talk to me. Speak plainly. Tell me what you need. Don't make me guess. Don't make me be the one to reach out. I won't probably do it. Not ever.
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[Gossamer's Scrapbook] The Ethereal Canyon II

Postby Gossamer on July 9th, 2022, 2:51 am

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Godmodding & Powergaming


I'm reposting because we all need to hear this again. Quite a few people that Godmod or Metagame aren't doing it on purpose. I believe that to be true. I think they don't understand the nature of the game.

Godmodding (sometimes called Powergaming) has a whole host of definitions but is distinctly different from Metagaming. In general, Godmodding is a term used for those that create a character that is portrayed as skilled sometimes to the point that they are virtually indestructible and incredibly good at everything they do despite their skillset listed on their character sheet. Anyone who utilizes skills at a higher level than listed on their CS is considered a Godmodder.

Godmodding is also a term used to refer to a character that describes an outcome of their own actions against another PC or NPC without giving the PC or the moderator a chance to respond. Ie. Character A swung his ax, cutting off Character B’s head! On Mizahar, it's perfectly acceptable for Character A to swing to kill, just let Character B respond and at least try to dodge. In a situation where it is impossible for Character B to dodge (say he's laying prone on the ground unconscious), it can also be considered Godmodding for Character B to miraculously getaway in a convenient and out-of-context way.

Further use of Godmodding is when a character takes too many actions in one round of combat. Some people love to write great detailed in-depth posts, but one has to remember that doing actions takes time. This is especially true with magic. So if it's our bad boy Character A’s turn to post again, and he casts two fireballs, throws up a shield, and creates a sword of stone all out of his awesome Reimancy, odds are he’s not going to have time for all of that at once. A fireball or two is fine, but some things take concentration, and PC’s have a tendency to forget about casting time in magic. And while the wiki doesn’t specify casting time, we go by the ‘is it reasonable in those seconds’ rules. Probably four creations of oozing djed, forming it, and utilizing it isn’t.

Controlling characters that are not yours, to begin with, is also considered godmoding. This is not metagaming like some people confuse it with. Metagaming is utilizing knowledge (usually a skill or some news relevant to the game) your PC does not have in thread.



Metagaming

Metagaming is simply defined as the use of out-of-character knowledge in an in-character situation. A character played by a metagamer does not act in a way that reflects the character's in-game experiences and back-story.

Metagaming most commonly occurs when a pc utilizes knowledge (usually a skill or some news relevant to the game) they do not have in thread. Player A knows how to tie a killer knot thus Player A’s PC (Character A) can too! Where’d he learn how to tie knots? When? Show me the lore or skill? If you don’t have it, you don’t know it unless its considered in-game common knowledge. Now, this is a mild example, a tiny whoops, but the use of Metagaming gets vast and ridiculous fast.

Metagaming is not allowed on Mizahar. All Metagaming will be commented on and noted when threads are graded and most instances, when either noted by Storytellers or reported by players, will result in PM's that ask players to change their posts to more clearly reflect their PC's skillset. This is why it is important to keep your Character Sheet updated and current.

Metagaming is distinctly different but closely related to Godmodding (Powergaming). Please see the Godmodding section for noted differences. Neither is allowed in Syka or on Mizahar in general. Mistakes are made, and sometimes these two instances happen without players being aware. We understand this, but expect corrections to be made if and when incidents do occur.
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[Gossamer's Scrapbook] The Ethereal Canyon II

Postby Gossamer on July 9th, 2022, 3:17 pm

Dominion & The Outpost

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So, I'm going to attempt to Gossplain The Outpost to you all in case most of you are clueless. I think by now, the very nature of The Outpost should be crystal clear if you've spent any time poking through the Lore. However, some of you aren't nosey, don't avidly snoop through obscure bits of magic, and have never read the Dominion entry. I get it. Why should fighters or healers ever be interested? Mkay... that's where Gossplaining comes in.

To explain The Outpost, I need to tell you about a few other concepts first. And to do that, I thought I'd use an example that everyone learns in gradeschool hugely dumbed down.

So we are all familiar with the Earth... its crust, mantle, and core. That's a huge oversimplification, of course, but you get the idea. Let's talk about the world of Mizahar for a moment and how the Gods and Mortals interact. We'll use this handy diagram of the Earth as an example.

Mizahar is built around something called The Ukalas. It is the core of the world, much like the core of the Earth. Its a tangible place of power where all the Gods can freely come and go. Each God has the ability to carve out sections of the Ukalas for themselves.... in essence these carved out sections are called Divine Dominions. Within these Divine Dominions, the Gods know everything, see everything, and finally control everything. To them, making a change such as turning the sky another color takes a mere thought. Changing a landscape from Arctic to Tropical? The bat of an eyelash.

They can also kill anything in their Dominion in a split second with just a thought.

Dominions are kind of like those magical trees with the little doors where you can walk all the way around say a normal oak tree and its normal, but if you open the door in it and step inside, its the innards of a huge sprawling manor? That's Dominion.

Mortal Dominion Mages stole this ability from the Gods. Well, lets be honest... probably a God somewhere or another fell in love with a mortal mage and taught them about dominion and that mage taught another, etc etc... until quite a few mages knew about it and could use it. So Mortals, that have Dominion, can in essence steal into the Divine Realm and carve out cavities for themselves in that realm. This really annoys the Gods and Goddesses... because its stolen space.

Now, if we consider the Ukalas as the Earth's Core... its not limited like the core of the Earth is. Its expansive, unlimited, and the source of all Djed. The Ukalas is filled with Dominons of all kinds... Divine, Mortal, and Dominions considered 'other'. Even when someone dies, their Dominions don't die... they just become abandoned and Dominion Mages and The Gods can stumble across them. Sometimes they still have creatures - plants and animals - living in them. They are like tiny bubbles floating around in a soda, all independent of one another, but existing in the same space.

The mantle is the Chavena... its a vast open dark space filled with glittering tendrils of light that sort look like fractals. These glittering ropes or tendrils of light are called Chavi. Each person has one and every living thing does too. It teathers the owner of the Chavi to the Ukalas and powers the life within them. The history of each and every person, all of their past lives, and every moment they've been alive including every emotion they've felt... all are written on the Chavi of that person. Dreamwalkers, those who follow Nysel, are able to tap into those Chavi and read what's there. Powerful Dreamwalkers can rewrite or erase events and emotions off Chavi.

So the Core aka the Ukalas, is separated from the Crust aka The Mortal Realm by the Chavena or aka the Mantle.

So what's the Crust? The crust is just in essence the Mortal Realm. This is where our characters are born, live, and die.

So, going back to the Ukalas and Dominions. Gods, Goddesses, Mortals and Others can carve out sections of the Ukalas... like a bubble in it... that they can then control and landscape any way they want. And those bubbles, because they are carved out by the individual, are wholly connected to the Individual. Any door opening or closing from that Dominion is utterly controlled by that mage/god/other that made it. They know every single thing that happens in that Dominion if they are paying attention. A cat someone planted in that dominion pounces a mouse and eats it? The mouse having been a hitchhiker in on a load of grain? The God/Mage/Other would know... if they were paying attention.

Dominion mages can make doors to their Dominions... as many as they like. They can lead all sorts of places. So a Dominion mage can create a dominion that has a door to Syliras and a door to Lhavit. They can walk out the door in Lhavit, pass through their dominion, and use another door and be in Syliras a few minutes later. Dominions are powerful things. Dominion mages can also live in their dominions for untold amounts of time and thrive. They can be untouchable... and they can disconnect their dominions from all points of contact with the Mortal Realm or other Dominions.

So... that leads us to The Outpost. This is the Dominion of The Goddess of Money, Trade, Commerce. It is utterly in her control. At any given moment she can change any given thing about the Dominion you are entering to do your trade, socialize, or even have a break from your normal life. She knows all and sees all that happens in that carved out spot because in the act of carving it out, it becomes an extension of themselves.

This is why, as a Vantha, and being hunted by the Gods, the last place you should ever be is in The Outpost. This is why, as a lameass outsider, you should not go into a Dominion like this and start a riot... especially without talking to a Moderator. Xyna might just strike you dead. In fact, any time you step foot in The Outpost, you are placing your life in That Goddess' hands... so if you have ever counterfitted money, destroyed trade, or done something contrary to her sphere of influence and she knows about it... you are in true and present danger.

Now... this being said... all this is OOC KNOWLEDGE for you players. Don't take it IC. There is only one active PC at this time, plus one PC the active PC is telling about this magic and how the Dominions work, that will have this knowledge IC at this time. And very few NPCs are aware of this. This would be, of course, any PCs with Dominion as a skill or Dominion Lores.

I know its a poor explanation, but at least you guys might be helped out a bit by it.

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