Fanfiction.net is Doing it Again
Many of you know by now that Fanfiction.net is taking down stories again, mostly in the Twilight fandom, thanks to (or as a consequence of) a group of teenagers that reported the stories as having mature content. As retaliation, most of us have agreed to boycott the site for two days this weekend, the two heaviest days: Friday, June 8 and Saturday, June 9. The hours stated don’t really matter, and here’s why: for anything to be affected by a boycott, it needs to be affected at the pocket level. Fanfiction.net does not receive any revenue from the writers that post or the readers that visit, so that is moot. I never click on the ads anyway (who really does? Give me a break!) so they won’t be losing any revenue because of me, but I understand the spirit of the boycott and will be participating.
What’s the deal? Really? The way I see it, FF.net has very clear terms of service that many authors, including myself, are violating. The owners of the site have the ultimate right to take down stories that violate these terms of service. That is a given and is not open for discussion. BUT, and they have done this before, they do not give prior notice that a story is violating the TOS, nor a chance for the author to correct the problem before the story comes down. Essentially, the story is there one moment, the next it is gone. What’s infuriating is the fact that teenagers are dictating the way that FF.net is conducting its business. I won’t mention this teenage group on my blog because, honestly, they’re bullies and spoiled, and their forum reads like the bad diary of a teenage girl (which is what they are). I’m 35 years old, I have children and family, I am a professional and will not lower my standards to those of teenagers who cannot be reasoned with because they think with the amygdala part of the brain.
That said, what will I be doing about it? Most of my stories are already here on my blog except for two. Slowly I will be posting those as well (it is terribly time-consuming). I will also be setting myself up at The Writer’s Coffee Shop (TWCS) and/or the Archive of Our Own (AO3), and deleting the Fanfiction.net account, as much as it pains me to lose all those thousands of reviews on my stories. You might ask why, since the fandom affected is Twilight and not SVM/True Blood. I just don’t think it’s fair the way that FF.net has gone about, yet again, deleting stories without telling the authors. It also left the policing of its own website up to a group of malcontent teenagers, instead of having some kind of internal policy in place whenever an M-rated story is posted so they can nip the story in the bud, as it were.
Them’s my two cents. You’re welcome to join the boycott here on Facebook or sign the petition here on Change.org, although I honestly think neither of these things will change the owners’ minds on how they go about enforcing their TOS. Real change happens when people take their business elsewhere in droves. A huge and permanent migration of writers and readers is what is needed. Once their readership goes down, so will their ad revenue. I can’t think of anything better.
It Will be a Boy
Many of you are aware that I’m very, VERY pregnant. I haven’t posted much about it because I didn’t want to bore anybody to death about baby stories (such as: he was hiccuping at 3am and woke me up!). What follows falls into the category of WTMI: Way Too Much Information. You’re welcome to continue reading if you’re curious because, per usual, I’m an open book and I like to share (sometimes too much). If you are squeamish about anything that has to do with the female anatomy and/or pregnancy, please (I beg you) feel free to skip the rest of this post. If you’re like me, you’ll be fascinated by what follows.
When I was pregnant with my first child, my cervix began dilating at 26 weeks (that’s roughly 6 1/2 months gestation). There were no contractions, just a spontaneous opening of what should be closed and keep the baby in. They admitted me to the hospital, and I stayed in bed for the next two weeks, until my baby decided she was going to stick a foot out the open door and arrive early at 28 weeks. She weighed 2 lbs. 1 oz. and was only 14 inches long. She spent 2 months in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Now, thankfully, she is a very healthy almost-5-year-old, but the heartache of seeing her attached to every machine imaginable, fearing for her life day in, day out, was more than I could handle.
After thinking a lot, and a lot of talking to my husband, and my doctor’s absolute confidence that I could have another baby and carry him to term, we decided I would stop working and try for a second. We got pregnant right away (unheard of for me, last time it took me years!), and besides a little scare in the beginning everything has gone according to textbook: the textbook for people who have high-risk pregnancies. That’s me. My body simply dislikes being pregnant. To that end, I had a cerclage the day before Christmas Eve. A cerclage is a stitch placed around the cervix to keep it closed for the duration of most of the pregnancy, at least until the baby is considered full term at 37 weeks (well into the 9th month). For me it was a preventive measure because of my history. Some women get them after their cervix starts to open, which hadn’t been an option for me during my first pregnancy.
Those few days after the cerclage were really tough for two reasons: a cerclage is, technically, surgery. I had a surgical procedure, with anesthesia, performed on a delicate part of my body while I was 13 weeks pregnant. That same day, my mother-in-law almost died from, what we now know, were complications due to colon cancer. I was alone with my daughter, recuperating from surgery, while my husband took care of his mother.
Things started getting better thereafter. I was asked by my former employer if I could help out in my old position, if only part-time, because the person that had taken over for me left abruptly. I’ve been working for them since Febuary, and will continue working for them for these next two days. What happens on Thursday? The moment of truth: so far my cervix has held nice and strong, and the only “bad” stuff that’s happened is the pain and pressure I’ve felt lately with the extra baby pressure. I can’t stand or walk for very long, and climbing stairs (I live in two-story home) has to be kept to a minimum, same with lifting heavy things. On Thursday, that cerclage comes out, no anesthesia this time. I will be two days’ short of 37 weeks, and this boy will be ready to arrive whenever he wants. I have a C-section scheduled for the 26th of June, but I seriously doubt he will hold out that long. All I do know is that taking out the cerclage will be a painful process that will keep me from doing much for a few days after.
These past few months have been the busiest I’ve had my whole life. I have to make sure I’m healthy, I’ve been working, I’ve been taking care of my daughter, and nesting. The next few months will be even busier with a newborn added to the mix. I don’t know if I’ll be able to update my stories (even though my brain is positively churning with ideas), or even if I’ll be able to post about True Blood (Season 5 starts this Sunday!). Since I won’t be working after the cerclage comes out, I shall try to follow those plot bunnies, but I can’t make promises simply because…well, babies have their own schedules. My little bundle of joy might decide to make his appearance the moment that cerclage comes out, which would actually be perfect. We would all be home in time to watch the True Blood premiere! 🙂
Thank you for reading this far and thank you in advance for understanding. Here’s a sonogram taken a few weeks ago of the baby kissing the placenta. I say that’s like an adult kissing a fridge. LOL!