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Renting Space in Your Brain

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I’ve been a user of the internet in all of its many forms since the mid 90s, and since then I have had my fair share of trolls and mean comments – usually simple one offs like “I don’t like your voice” left on a video (which is ironic when I have acted and sang semi professionally!). But in my history of using the internet and becoming a content creator, I can count on one hand the number of people who just don’t know when to stop and start to become a nuisance . The first incident happened around 15 years ago and was a guy my husband and sister dubbed “Batteries” and things got so bad with him and his threats that I did have to go to the police. The second was about 10 years ago, and it might have been more than one person but at any rate, the result was *me* getting banned from a useful website I posted on and I had to speak with the police about the harassment. Then we delve into the land of psycho expats with more than one just losing their shit and stalking several fellow expats…and now we get to the most recent, ridiculous harassment/trolling efforts of someone who…well, they’re anon as far as I know. They do have internet handles, but I’m not going to mention them out of politeness.

Here’s where we get to the title of my post – Renting space in your brain. It’s incredible how ONE SINGLE COMMENT can kill you. For example, ONE music director in 2002 didn’t like my voice and I didn’t sing for 10 years. These comments weren’t about my singing, but another way I contribute to the arts – these comments were on the words I wrote.

The first comment came in September on my account over on Fanfiction.net. It was from a fellow “author”, and it was nasty and harrassive. FFN doesn’t let you remove nasty comments from registered users, so I simply deleted (And later re-posted) the story the comment had been left on and blocked the user id. Speaking to a fellow reader, I found out that the author in question “does this to any author who writes better than them and has a following”. Ok, so it was down to sheer jealousy then. Fine, whatever. I kept publishing.

I made the move to Archive of Our Own a few months ago after I finally got my invite to the site. I moved over much of my fic from FFN, but I also made an announcement on FFN that I was going to be posting on AO3 and if I wasn’t updating on FFN, to check me on AO3 and I listed my AO3 pseudo – AnnaOnTheMoon.

AO3 allows you to screen comments before they are posted, and a few came in from a person. Again, they were filled with harassment and well, they tried to tell me what I should write. Like, telling me “You need to write blahblahblah and blahblahblah needs to happen.” My response wanted to be “Go write it yourself”, but instead I just deleted the messages, figuring they would get the hint that I wasn’t interested in their “orders”. Other readers left comments requesting different storylines and if I felt I could write them, I did.  But when someone demanded I do something or another…no. AO3 doesn’t have a block feature, so I just had to delete the comments as they came in.

Finally, they stopped using their registered profile, and swapped to posting anon. And funny enough, the only reason I found out they were the same person was due to what they wrote in their comments when they referenced “a lack of negative feedback”.  Now, why would you assume someone even had negative feedback unless you had been the one who tried to leave it in the first place under your other nom de plume?

It was at this point I turned to getting advice from Author Dayton Ward on Twitter:

Dayton Ward was right. Just ignore, ignore, ignore. Don’t let them have space in my brain. But…it was hard. Especially with the comments that were coming through. At one point, they seemed to blame me for the entire Picard/Crusher fandom.

They decided that a fic I wrote called “The Comment Box” was about them. The fic itself was a tongue in cheek story about the ridiculous comments that are posted on Trek pages. Their response? Dedicating a story to me (and a friend of mine who is a big supporter of my writing.)

They thought they were writing an opt-ed. Uhm…no.  They also decided to steal my own tag of tongue in cheek, because…well, why not.

They admitted they had been reading me on FFN and had been the FFN user I blocked. They claimed to have “Been stalked in high school” (I also should note, that basing their age on what they mention in their own author’s notes, they aren’t much out of HS) and yet they decided to stalk me. (oh, and told me my depiction of stalking was wrong, because the way they were stalked is the absolute only way things ever happen)

The story got weird. I was Queen of the kingdom who churned out shit, but then I also inspire people? But the gem had to have been where I basically get blamed for the entire fandom.

I mean…what now?  But this “fic” was the final straw, and I contacted the AO3 admins and reported the story and the user for harassment.

…but I still can’t get their comments out of my head.  It’s poisoned my story, just like it poisoned one of my previous stories.  At this point, I want to either abandon the story (and the series as it’s second in a series), or delete it.  But if I delete it, I doubt I’ll ever re-write it, so then that also means that months of work will just be down the toilet because I can’t evict this asshole from my brain.

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*sigh* Hopefully, by getting this all out, I will be able to evict them once and for all and return to my writing…because how does that phrase go? The best revenge is a life well lived?

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+Meme made by me, screenshot from Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
++Meme by Swear Trek
All other screenshots are from Archive Of Our Own or my own Email and Twitter accounts. 

The contents of this post, including images are © Rebecca J Lockley and Tim Lockley unless otherwise stated and should not be reproduced without permission.

For full Copyright and Disclaimer, please read http://www.blog.beccajanestclair.com/copyright/

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Travel Products [Techish Stuff] Review

I thought I would write up a post about some of the travel products I’ve bought in the past year. All of the links lead to Amazon (and are Amazon Affiliate links). All of the photos have come from Amazon as well. Amazon is my current go-to for pretty much everything I can’t buy in town because I am an Amazon Prime member and get free one-day shipping. Despite all the issues I sometimes have with the delivery drivers, I still prefer Amazon over eBay.

ButterFox Universal Electronics Accessories Travel Organiser / Carry Case – The Butterfox organiser is one of those packing cube like products that works. When Tim and I travel together I’m able to fit nearly all of our cables for two DSLRs, my laptop (including external mouse), 2 phones, 2 tablets, and 2 kindles. This bag has two small inner pockets so I tucked in a few USB sticks and a card reader. When we travelled internationally, I also was able to include a double plug converter for the camera chargers and laptops. This bag also is great at home for keeping the camera chargers locatable. Much easier to see the mesh bag in a basket of chargers than finding the individual cords, and much easier when you’re travelling to not have lots of cords tangled all over the bottom of your bag. I WISH I had had a bag like this when my mom and I went to Ireland in 2009. We had a connecting flight in Paris (sadly, no chance to see Paris) and I had my backpack filled with stuff. For whatever reason, at CDG you have to go back through security to get a connecting flight and the lady on security did not like my bag full of tangled cords and actually made me empty my entire rucksack for her so she could see everything because “cords”. Literally, the only reason she gave me for wanting me to empty my bag. She also confiscated my awesome EMS caribeaner that I still haven’t been able to replace, but that’s another story. So, bag to organise your cords is a good idea. If you don’t want to go with a bag, maybe you want one of these:

dodocool Universal Grid-it Organization System – Tim and I both have grid-its we bought before our trip to the US in 2013. These were my first attempts at cord organising, and I like them a lot, but the only problem is they can get quite bulky if you have a lot of boxy plugs. The grid is good for flat items though, so it would be a great organiser for USB cables and other flat things. I’ve also seen people use these for more than electronics – you could use one of these for your make-up when you travel instead of a make up bag, you could use one to organize your pens/pencils and other stationary bits, or just to keep track of all the little odd things you take with you that don’t really have a home….and ok, that’s all I can really think of. Again though, these are great at home for securing all those odd cords and things you have no idea where to put because every item comes with a separate USB cable, but you only really use one cable for everything….or you have a video camera that comes with an AWKWARD cable that when you lose it you wind up not being able to empty it for a year. Yeah, that happened. We didn’t take these on our recent trips, but I still think they’re good.

Damai Portable Universal Electronics Accessories Travel Organizer – Another organising case for electronics. I picked this up because it said “fits ipad” and my Samsung is the 8″ version, so I assumed it would fit. It does not, and this case is not big enough for a standard ipad. Maybe the mini would have fit? But it is a great case because it zips shut so unlike the grid-it, nothing ever falls out. And it has loads of little pockets and elastic bands so it holds loads. It also has lots of slots that are credit card sized, so you can use it to empty out your purse of all the unnecessary store loyalty cards if you’ve forgotten before you go, or use it to keep track of attraction tickets. I used this to keep things like USB sticks, extra headphones, my ipod (which is now lost! :'( ), and extra memory cards for the cameras. This wasn’t useful on our short trip to Austria because of space (I took the Butterfox case), but I took this to the US for three weeks to try to keep things organized. This worked, but it also suffered the same problem as the grid it because once you cram it full, you risk it being bulky.
Probably my favourite product, and one we use all over our home is this:

Multi Port USB Mains Charger – 4 Ports USB Charger with UK, EU, US & AU Plugs – These are great! One plug, four USB ports. Like a USB hub but for the outlet. Tim and I each use one upstairs on our bedsides to charge phones, tablets, and kindles without taking up multiple plugs and we keep one downstairs in the living room for charging Tim’s work phone, my fitbit, an emergency phone or tablet charge if one of us starts beeping low battery before bed, etc. They’re also great for hotel rooms where they usually only have one or two plugs for the whole room and you have loads of devices to charge! It also comes with interchangeable plugs for the entire world, so no matter where you are travelling, you will have a charger without needing to pack loads of those little converters, assuming everything you have can charge via USB.

Travel Adapter USA 3 Pin Earthed Extension Lead 2 UK Socket This is a USA plug, but here’s the one for Europe: Travel Adapter EUROPE Multi Extension Lead 2 Pin Earthed Plug 2 UK Sockets. Having two plugs on a short extension instead of a bulky plug at the wall is so much easier! Especially if access is limited because plugs are behind furniture or high up on the wall and there isn’t space for a bulky plug. 2 sockets instead of one because this way you can charge your camera and use your laptop at the same time, or you can charge two cameras, or both you and your husband/partner can use your laptops. I also have a UK 4-plug with a US plug on the end that lives at my mom’s house since when we visit her it’s for a long visit and we will usually want to be charging cameras AND using both laptops at the same time. And since my 4-port plug has a UK plug for it, I sometimes don’t bother switching it to a US plug and plug it in to the extension.

SAMAR® Extendable Integrated Selfie Handheld Stick – Yep. A selfie stick. Because Tim and I travel alone and we usually get loads of pictures of me some place or him som eplace, but very few of the two of us together. So a selfie stick was purchased in the Amazon day deals for £2. We really used it for the first time when we were in Austria, and we have tons of pictures of us together! And if you have short arms, it’s also good for yourself if you travel alone. The trick to not being “that guy” is to just take out the stick when you want your photo, extend it, get it all set up (mine has bluetooth and then you press a button on the stick to take the picture), go to where you want your photo (set it up while you’re waiting in a queue if it’s a place with a queue!), use it, then walk away to put the stick away. People will like you better.

There’s also things I don’t have that I’d love to have, like a really good portable USB charger. Tim has one of these, but I only have what I like to call “lipstick chargers” and they’re only good for maybe 75% of a charge and only good once before you need to recharge it, but the one that Tim has can be used multiple times to a full 100% and can even do two devices at once. So much easier than carrying around the 3-4 portable chargers I was carrying around in Austria.

I feel like I’ve really rambled on about travel tech stuff and haven’t talked at all about anything else, but this post is getting pretty long, so I’ll do a second post on other things.

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The contents of this post, including images are © Rebecca J Lockley and Tim Lockley unless otherwise stated and should not be reproduced without permission. If you are not reading this on http://blog.beccajanestclair.com, my facebook page, Networked Blogs, the RSS feed(s), or through an e-mail subscription, please notify me.

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Swagbucks Update

Back in August, I complained about Swagbucks Amazon UK vouchers being twice as much as US vouchers. I had decided that I would collect US vouchers with my points since the points would go farther. Well, I discovered that since my Swagbucks account is a UK account, I can’t get the US vouchers. Poo. So, I kept collecting my points, and a few weeks ago, I was able to swap in 849 points for £5 at Amazon.

And I’m already back up to over 200 Swagbucks, well on my way to earning another £5. It might not seem like much, but it’s better than nothing, eh? And it was free to sign up for and free to use, so why not?

So if you haven’t yet, join up! Swagbucks uses Google for it’s search results, so it’s no different than using Google, you just can win points. The points are given out randomly. Sometimes you score with 15 or more points, sometimes you get 5, other times none. But it’s still great fun. Swagbucks also offers swagcodes on their facebook page, and you can even earn points for using their firefox toolbar.

Search & Win

Or click here: http://swagbucks.com/refer/BeccaJaneStClair

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Books for Sale

As some of you may know, I will be moving to the United Kingdom at some point, and I do not want to take all my books along. The following is just a SMALL Selection (believe it or not!)

All books unless otherwise marked are $1. Shipping is $2 for the first book, $1 each additional book within the United States ONLY (unless otherwise noted as for large books).

Prices will be higher for international, only because these things are heavy!

If you’re local and can pick up books, no shipping charges.

I will take offers on large lots, so please look over the list and make an offer.

First come, first serve. Cross-posted in several places.

The Dream Encyclopedia – Lewis $3/$4 shipping
10,000 Dreams Interpreted – Capella $3 shipping
Dreams – barns & Noble
Celtic Myth & Magick – McCoy
The Runes – Horisk Svensson (comes with a burlap bag of runes) ($4 shipping – cannot be shipped via media mail)
Runelore – Ihorsson (comes with a velvet pouch of runes) ($4 shipping – cannot be shipped via media mail)

Hello Midnight – Deborah Bishop & David Levy
The Mystical Art of Palmestry – Lauren David Peden
Whole Body Meditations – Lorin Roche
Dragons – Dr. Karl Shucker $3/$4 shipping
Candelmas – Amber K & Azrael Arynn K
How to Read Palms – Gibson
The Witch Book – Buckland $3/$4 shipping
The Book of Druidry – Ross Nichols
The 21 Lessons of Merlyn – Monroe
The Earth Path – Starhawk
The Spiral Dance 20th Anniversary Edition – Starhawk
Irish Fairy & Folk Tales – Yeates $3/$4 shipping
Living Buddha, Living Christ – Thich Nhat Hanh
Tea Cup Reading – Fenton
The Path to Tranquility – His Holynes the Dalai Lama
Eragon – Christopher Paolini

Little House on the Prairie – Laura Ingalls Wilder
On the Banks of Plum Creek – ”
Lord of the Rings Trilogy + The Hobbit $3/$4 shipping
The Hardy Boys 1-4, 6, 8, 52, 57, 58, 77, 79 $1 EACH
Mother Speak – Christopher Kubasik
Star Wars Trilogy
Star Wars Radio Drama Script
Elizabeth & Mary – Cousins, Rivals, Queens – Jane Dunn $3/$4 shipping
Sleeping Arrangements – Laura Shaine Cunningham
Confessions of a SHopaholic – Sophie Kinsella
Shopaholic Takes Manhattan – ”
The Birth of Venus – Sarah Dunat
Portrait of an Artist The Biography of Georgia O’Keeffe
The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & Other Stories – Tim Burton
The Queen’s Fool – Philippa Gregory $2/$3 Shipping
Earthy Joys – ” $2/$3 Shipping
The Boleyn Inheritance – ” $2/$3 Shipping
The Other Boleyn Girl – ” $2/$3 Shipping
The Virgin’s Lover – ” $2/$3 Shipping
The Woman Warrior – Maxine Hong Kingston
Mason & Dixon – Thomas Pynchon $3/$5 shipping (BIG book)
Carpe Jugulum – Terry Pratchett
Soul Music – ”
Witches Abroad = ”
Small Gods – ”
Reaper Man – ”
Wyrd Sisters – ”
Lords and Ladies – ”
Mort – ”
Hogfather – ”
Star Wars: Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina
Coyote Blue – Christopher Moore
Ghost of a Chance – Yasmine Galenorn
Let’s Meet on Platform 8 – Carole Matthews
The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett
A Tale of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
Emma – Jane Austen
The Shining – Stephen King
Secrets in the Attic – VC Andrews
Sweet Valley Saga – The Patman’s of Sweet Valley
Sweet Valley High – The Return of the Evil Twin
Babysitter’s Club Special – Graduation Day
Written on Silk – Linda Lee Chaikin
Why Marriages Succeed or Fail – John Gottman, PhD (used textbook)
Love Poems by Women
Mary Queen of Scotland and the Isles – Margaret George – $3/$5 shipping (BIG book)
The Secret Diary of Anne Boleyn – Robin Maxwell
The Last Boleyn – Karen Harper
Please Don’t Go – Elizabeth Benning
Anne of Green Gables – (hardback Barnes & Noble’s Edition) $2/$3 shipping
Rilla of Ingleside – LM Montgomery
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (UK Children’s Paperback)
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (US Paperback) $2/$3 shipping
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (US Paperback) $2/$3 shipping
Mary Called Magdalene – Margaret George $3/$5 shipping (BIG book)
A Guide to the Star Wars Universe (second Edition)

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