dolorosa_12: (emily hanna)
[personal profile] dolorosa_12
Hello to all the new people now following me as a result of the friending meme (and for those of you who haven't seen the meme yet, it's here).

I thought I'd introduce myself to all of you. Feel free to ask me questions about anything.


My name is Ronni, and I'm a library assistant at one of the academic libraries within the University of Cambridge in the UK. I'm an immigrant — I moved to Cambridge from Australia about seven years ago to do an MPhil in medieval Irish literature. I followed the MPhil with a PhD in the same subject area (my thesis was on literary representations of authority, dispossession, land and history, and the interaction thereof, in five eleventh/twelfth-century Irish texts), which I finished just over a year ago. Academia left me intellectually and emotionally exhausted, and I knew it wasn't for me, so I didn't pursue it beyond the PhD.

I began working in libraries as a weekend job as a way to make some extra money during my PhD. The first library job I took I normally call Original Library Job. I worked there for five years and only recently handed in my notice. In January of last year I began working part-time in another library (New Library Job), and added to this with an evening job in a third library (Newer Library Job). (Cambridge has A LOT of academic libraries.) Since January this year I've been working in pretty much my dream job (Newest Library Job). It's in reader support in yet another academic library in Cambridge, and mainly involves providing teaching and training in information literacy for the library users. I really love it.

Before my postgraduate studies, I worked as a book-reviewer and subeditor at a newspaper in Australia.

My partner is Matthias, and he also did a PhD in an area of medieval studies (in his case, Old English philology, hence my occasional reference to him online as My Favourite Philologist) before moving on to work in libraries. Last academic year he worked in four different libraries, but this year he's full-time in one, also an academic library within the University of Cambridge. He's working on a library and information studies MA via distance learning.

I'm the oldest of five sisters (the next sister down has the same mother and father as me, the other three share a father with us but have a different mother), and talk about them from time to time. Other people I mention here from time to time:

Sraffies are friends I met originally on a His Dark Materials fan forum. Most of us have met in real life now, and our friendship is based more on shared online/real-life experiences than HDM fandom.

Obernetters are friends I met originally on a forum for fans of the Australian YA series Obernewtyn. Again, most of us have met in real life now.

ASNCs are friends I made through the department in Cambridge where I studied for my MPhil and PhD.

I tend to talk about a mixture of fannish and real-life stuff, with a slight preference towards discussing fannish things. I'm interested in people's reviews and reactions to stuff, and finding out why they like (or dislike) the stories they do. I love discovering new books and TV shows with other people.

Forever fandoms: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, His Dark Materials, a huge number of books which I will outline in another category.

Current more well-known active fandoms: Mad Max: Fury Road, Orphan Black, Sens8, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell (book and TV show), Orange Is The New Black, Pretty Little Liars (although the most recent season finale is making me question my desire to stick with it), The Raven Cycle, Jane The Virgin, The 100, Peaky Blinders, and, for want of a better description, folklore and mythology with a focus on female characters, particularly those that don't get much narrative attention in the source material (a representative example being Briseis and Chryseis from the Iliad).

Tiny fandoms-of-one that are really what I want to talk about: The Romanitas trilogy by Sophia McDougall, The Pagan Chronicles series by Catherine Jinks, Galax Arena, and the Space Demons trilogy by Gillian Rubinstein, The Bone Season series by Samantha Shannon, The Demon's Lexicon trilogy by Sarah Rees Brennan, The Troy Game series by Sara Douglass, the Legendsong series by Isobelle Carmody, the Tomorrow series by John Marsden, basically the entire output of Victor Kelleher, the Crossroads trilogy by Kate Elliott, and Juniper and Wise Child by Monica Furlong.

In other words, if you're a fan of any of these books, or might like to be, let me know!

I also post quite a bit about fannish culture and community issues, within both the pro-SFF and transformative works sides of fandom.

As well as Dreamwidth, you can find me at:
[livejournal.com profile] dolorosa_12 (a mirror of my Dreamwidth blog, and if you have accounts in both places, I'd really prefer to be added on Dreamwidth)
[twitter.com profile] ronnidolorosa
[tumblr.com profile] dolorosa
[archiveofourown.org profile] Dolorosa

I also have a Wordpress blog where I post reviews and essays; I'm a contributing reviewer at Those Who Run With Wolves, and I've recently got really into making and listening to playlists and fanmixes at 8tracks (where you can find me here).

Feel free to add me at any of these places, although if your username is really different to your Dreamwidth handle, could you let me know, so that I know who you are.

I rarely post under lock. You are welcome to link, share, mention, or reblog any public post I make in any of the places I've listed (so, for example, I have no problem with a fic on Ao3 being shared on Tumblr, a Dreamwidth post referenced on Twitter, a tweet linked on LJ, and so on).

I think that's enough to start with. I look forward to getting to know you all.

Date: 2015-09-10 08:55 pm (UTC)
gingerschnapps: (Default)
From: [personal profile] gingerschnapps
Okay, I'm about to squee all over you, so brace yourself.

Eeeeeee Raven Cycle!! Eeeeeeee Demon's Lexicon!! Eeeeeee fellow librarian!! I too want to get into academic librarianship once I am done my year with the Archives in Dublin. As to your MPhil topic...I am Irish on my mother's side and I was the only one of the grandkids to really take to that side of my heritage (it didn't hurt that I'm the only ginger). My grandmother told me so many stories and legends and once I got to university I took a double-major in Irish Literature and Medieval Studies to try to find more.

So basically....you sound like my kind of person, and I am happy you friended me. :)

Date: 2015-09-10 09:50 pm (UTC)
gingerschnapps: (Default)
From: [personal profile] gingerschnapps
Ooops. Sorry. I don't think my brain is quite firing on all cylinders tonight.

......aha. Haha. Ha. You fail to realize how small my university was, and how utterly unprepared they were for me. We had one professor who specialized in contemporary Irish literature and another who studied Celtic history. I basically terrorized both of them into letting me experiment on mashing the two together. Basically we studied whatever I could lay my hands on. I studied the Ulster and Fenian sagas as well as the Historical Cycle. Everything else was pretty much cobbled together. I did love the rest of my Medieval Studies, though.

I am unbelievably excited for The Raven King. I love those books so much. I cried for Persephone, I love Blue unabashedly, and Adam and Ronan are breaking my tiny heart.

Date: 2015-09-10 10:22 pm (UTC)
alasse_irena: Photo of the back of my head, hair elaborately braided (Default)
From: [personal profile] alasse_irena
Some of your tiny fandoms of one are about to become tiny fandoms of two! =D I am here for Demon's Lexicon, Pagan, and the Tomorrow series, although it's been so long since I read the later that I don't know what coherent things I'd have to say anymore.

Date: 2015-09-11 02:13 pm (UTC)
alasse_irena: Photo of the back of my head, hair elaborately braided (Default)
From: [personal profile] alasse_irena
Yes, I read the Pagan series! I loved them dearly. (Jordan. Oh Jordan. My fave.) I did read Pagan's Daughter, but I didn't like it as much as the books featuring actual Pagan. I will have a look at your fic though - any Pagan fic is good Pagan fic! <3

Demon's Lexicon! Let us talk about that! I...love all the characters in that book sooooo much, but if you had to make me choose favourites, I'd probably say, Nick, Sin and Jamie?

Let me just talk about Nick for a second. I am just very fond of the way Sarah Rees Brennan presents humanity and family and love as things that can be learnt. I mean, to make a comparison - there's none of JK Rowling's "born from a loveless union? You are incapable of feeling love" thing here. Also, I care a lot about the relationship between Nick and Alan! Fictional sibling relationships are just absolutely my thing.

I really must reread the Tomorrow series. It's been so long, but I forever have love for the mismatched group of people who circumstances force to work to a common goal trope, and also, war stories set in Australia? Yes please.

I feel like we must collect all us people who were reading YA in Australia in the 90s and early 2000s and get some fandom going.

Date: 2015-09-17 01:55 pm (UTC)
alasse_irena: Photo of the back of my head, hair elaborately braided (Default)
From: [personal profile] alasse_irena
I have lots of sisters, and I often find that fictional depictions of sibling relationships don't portray them accurately.

Yes, this! I have an older brother and a younger sister, both of whom I'm really close with, and I find that it's really rare to find a work of fiction that manages to portray anything like my experience. You always find either a relationship which involves endless petty bickering, or the author treats any pair of siblings that are able to express their affection for each other as uncomfortably close/bordering on incest, and I just feel like Sarah Rees Brennan did a really good job of siblings who are each other's most significant relationship without acting as though she was courting controversy by making siblings who are also friends.

I love Sin. I love Sin so much. I have a bit of a bias for dancers, and also family-oriented characters, because it's so rare to find that in a main character - although that's actually true of pretty much all the major characters in those books, and I just really enjoy it. I also enjoyed her the way her relationship with Mae developed throughout the book.


I think when I read the Tomorrow series, I was still young enough that what struck me most was the fact that the books talked about things I hadn't heard people talk about much - like that sex can be awkward, and your first relationship is not always the best decision. And yes, they also do feel like a celebration of the resourcefulness and adaptability of a generation which I wasn't really aware enough to have heard demonised then, but I have now, and in hindsight I really appreciate that passionate defence of Gen Y.
(To be fair, I really enjoyed the first three books, but I felt after that that they went downhill a bit. Not sure what popular opinion is on that.)

If there's interest, I could start up some kind of Dreamwidth comm and/or themed Tumblr for this.
I for one am putting my hand up! I'll let you know if any catchy names come to mind.
(How do you feel about Melina Marchetta (particularly Jellicoe Road?))

Date: 2015-09-11 09:10 am (UTC)
myrdschaem: black and white picture of hair strain bulging away from other hair (Default)
From: [personal profile] myrdschaem
I have yet to meet a librarian in fandom that isn't awesome, so strong introduction you got there! :D

I do like books and while I'm kinda stuck in the hole of a) already too many lying around and b) all this other fanfic to read, getting recs for new, (queer esp!) SFF is always great. In summation: You can probably easily tempt me into reading canon for like all your tiny book fandoms, if I can find them.

Date: 2015-09-11 12:34 pm (UTC)
myrdschaem: black and white picture of hair strain bulging away from other hair (Default)
From: [personal profile] myrdschaem
Honestly, when given the choice between two kinds of books my first answer is usually both. But whatever you think is rec worthy, tbh.

Ha, I already read the three reviews without commenting and silently filed it under the list of books to get/check out! I've actually read Elizabeth Bear before, I read "AllThe Wind-Wracked Stars" which I liked alot but hadn't yet found time to get the other two books of the triology. But yes, definitely will take a look at her Karen Memory book as well!

Date: 2015-09-15 04:17 pm (UTC)
myrdschaem: black and white picture of hair strain bulging away from other hair (Default)
From: [personal profile] myrdschaem
Will do! And LGBT+ stories without tragedy is always a treat. :)

Date: 2015-09-11 11:38 am (UTC)
schneefink: River walking among trees, from "Safe" (Default)
From: [personal profile] schneefink
Hi! Your link posts are very cool :)

Date: 2015-09-11 01:42 pm (UTC)
dhampyresa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] dhampyresa
I'm pretty sure I've read the Tomorrow series, in French, way back when. It's the oone where the kids go hiking and their country's been taken over when they come back, right?

Date: 2015-09-11 02:16 pm (UTC)
alasse_irena: Photo of the back of my head, hair elaborately braided (Default)
From: [personal profile] alasse_irena
Yes, that's the one! I had no idea it had been translated into French. it's such an Australian thing to me it's strange to think of it in another language.

Date: 2015-09-14 12:59 pm (UTC)
dhampyresa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] dhampyresa
It was! I liked it a lot, but I can't remember if I ever finished it.

Date: 2015-09-14 02:08 pm (UTC)
dhampyresa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] dhampyresa
That does sound like a big deal. I'm sorry to say it was nothing like this when I read it, more's the pity.

Date: 2015-09-11 04:18 pm (UTC)
falena: Picture of a girl hiding behind a camera, reflected in a mirror. (Default)
From: [personal profile] falena
I have read the first book of the Tomorrow series! Because an LJ friend really liked them and sent me a copy all the way from down under so that I could give it a try. It was many years ago so all I remember is just that I liked it . But now that ebooks are more common I could probably track the first book and the rest of the series again and read it all. Ah the wonders of technology.

Date: 2015-09-11 11:14 pm (UTC)
naye: a photo of old books (books)
From: [personal profile] naye
!!!! I am an immigrant librarian working in Cambridge?! HI! I even worked in one of the Cambridge libraries for a couple of months when I was still temping through TES. I have since gotten a research admin position and don't do any actual librarianing, but still. I am really looking forward to hearing more about all the Library jobs!

Date: 2015-09-13 10:37 am (UTC)
naye: (robin - tea time)
From: [personal profile] naye
I know! I couldn't believe it when I saw your post - I tend to assume that people who speak of Cambridge mean the newer Cambridge? Especially since my wife did her undergrad at MIT, so there's a lot of Boston-area people in our lives. But no it's this Cambridge! Which is awesome - I'd totally be up for meeting up at some point.

As I've kind of failed to make it into the library world in Cambridge (well, sort of - I found something else to do as a temp for a while and ended up liking it so much I stayed there instead of looking for librarian positions), I'm really curious to know what it's like where you are.

Next month it will have been exactly three years since we moved here. It's a nice city to be in - I love that everything is in walking or biking distance, and our area has a great selection of shops with food from all over, which is awesome. Butt I'm not used to being this landlocked, and I'm constantly frustrated by the weird UK rail infrastructure that routes everything through London, with the option being narrow, clogged-up roads. I'm spoiled from living in countries like Sweden, Japan and Switzerland that all have some combination of super efficient public transport and plenty of wide open spaces to explore.

Which isn't really a complaint about Cambridge! You've just caught me at a time where I'm suffering a particularly strong bout of wanderlust, I think.

How about you? How's Cambridge been treating you?

Date: 2015-09-17 08:46 pm (UTC)
naye: a blooming cherry tree and a blue sky with the words "feel it turn" (feel it turn)
From: [personal profile] naye
Yes, we'll figure out sometime to get together - I'm still not very mobile (bike accident, knee injury etc), but we can set things up later!

The library world in Cambridge is...weird. Very cliqueish, and somewhat insular

Yeah, that was the impression I got. Unfortunately coming in as an outsider I never did get that foot in the door, and I felt pretty dejected after my three month stint as a temporary library assistant. (It was a tiny faculty library where the head librarian wasn't very good at anything people-related, and tried to keep the fact that they were cutting my contract a month short under wraps until they could go on vacation, so. Not the best experience.)

It does seem like it would be a fascinating place to work, though! Once you're in the system, it seems like there are plenty of networks and interest groups for various aspects of librarianship, which is something you don't really get in a public library in my experience. Plus some of the most amazing collections, of course - I've never done any rare book stuff, but just the fact that so many treasures exist right here is exciting to my nerdy little soul.

And to be fair to the library I mentioned, the fact that they let me go early is how I ended up with my current job, where I'm very happy! I've got an awesome line manager - she's totally a mentor-figure who looks out for me, and I learn a lot from watching her in action - and work with a great group of people in a role where I can develop a lot of useful skills.

Coming from Australia, which has terrible public transport (or indeed transport of any kind, unless you're flying between major cities), and where a trip to the coast with my friends necessitated an eight-hour bus ride, Britain's trains actually seem fantastic to me!

It's nice to put things in perspective! I suppose Britain does quite a lot better than for example the US in the public transport department - but then again, US roads are way more convenient (if less safe) than UK ones. The smallness of the country helps too - it's a haul with plenty of changes, but you can be in gorgeous places like Wales and Scotland in 5-6 hours of travel. It's just for short getaways that Cambridge is inconveniently located - I'm sorry, East Anglia, Wicken Fen is not an exciting destination, no matter how long it's been part of the Natural Trust. :/ As for Cambridge's immediate surroundings, it's just... very flat.

Ah, right now we're in the middle of getting my wife [personal profile] doctorskuld a spousal visa, so we're without passports. Which definitely doesn't help the feeling trapped!

Wow, what fascinating places to have lived in!

Thanks! Though I think Australia would be pretty cool too - I've never even been there. (We're sort of holding off until our relationship is legally acknowledged there.)

Really, the only one of those places I went to myself was Japan - my parents are Swiss and Swedish! We moved from Switzerland to Sweden when I was very young, but drove the 2000km down to Switzerland every summer to spend 6-8 weeks living there.

I first went to Japan on an exchange - my MLIS was a 2-year program, and as soon as I realized my University had an exchange with Japan I decided I had to go. A very close friend had done 6 months in Kyoto and loved it, another friend had been in Tokyo, and I had studied Japanese... It was brilliant.

I went to Kyoto, loved it, came home and finished my degree and then headed straight back to Japan because... why not? So all in all I lived there for three and a half years - one of which was the international exchange program (we had lectures in English and also studied Japanese). I returned to Japan to study at a language school for six months, and then I got a job as a conversational English teacher out in the countryside. I did that for a year, then worked as a teacher in an English-language preschool for Japanese kids near Osaka. I had a blast, and only returned to Sweden to work on my librarian resume as a step to moving countries to be with my then long-distance girlfriend (now wife).

It sounds like you've got the same feelings for Cambridge that I did for Kyoto! It's a wonderful thing to find a new place to make your home and belong, and find people to share that with. ♥

Date: 2015-09-13 02:14 pm (UTC)
geckoholic: (Default)
From: [personal profile] geckoholic
Thank you for this post, and it's really nice to meet you. :D

Date: 2015-09-11 08:39 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] crazedturkey.livejournal.com
Hooray for obernetters! Logged into my account there for the first time in ages recently - apparent,y it's been a decade!

Date: 2015-09-11 11:49 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dolorosa-12.livejournal.com
Obernet really is great! I haven't logged in for ages - probably not since the last book came out - and I'm not sure if I'll join the discussion when The Red Queen is published. I wasn't overly fond of The Sending, and I feel like I was being too negative in a space where everyone just wanted to squee. But Obernetters are great, and I'm so glad that we've been able to maintain friendships that go beyond shared fandom of the books.

I miss everyone, though. I think it's just me and one other Obernetter in the UK, and it feels like we're on the other side of the world from where all the action is.

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dolorosa_12: (Default)
rushes into my heart and my skull

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