Did not get anything useful done today other than going to Dad's house to let the Steemer guys in. That happened so early (and I slept so poorly last night, thanks shoulder!) that it pretty well cocked over the entire rest of the day.
I'm fervently hoping that Monday I can get the grass cut.
Still, the weather forecast says it'll be moderately nice outside for the next few days, with the occasional April shower to keep it interesting. We'll just have to play it by ear.
* * *
On "strong female characters".
My fight scenes--one-on-one type--are not very exciting reads, at least not to me. With some effort I can make them passable, but I know I still suffer from "idealizing" fights the way that post mentions.
Even so, the fights I've written don't usually feature someone pulling all kinds of fancy moves.
I'm reminded of this scene I wrote in the stinkeroo:
Ramirez did finally appear. Him and a couple of his cohorts rumbled up in a piece-of-shit Chevelle, and got out, trying to look tough. To my eyes, they looked like a bunch of asshole teenagers who didn’t know shit about shit—especially after Ramirez reached into the car and pulled out a can of Schlitz. He drained the rest of the can, crumpled it, and tossed it aside with a belch.There I have, at least, the phenomenon Vox talks about: injuries being sustained, but not feeling them at the time. But I don't have any real experience with fighting. And you can see what I mean, about how it's passable without being terribly exciting or suspenseful.
“Showtime,” I said tensely, adjusting my jock strap and opening the door, and wondering if all those hours of simulated combat Mike and I had put in would do me any good at all.
“Well, you’re here,” Ramirez smirked. “Ready to get your ass kicked, ass hole?” He asked smugly, enunciating the space between “ass” and “hole”. His friends guffawed at his wit.
“I could ask you the same question, dick breath,” I retorted dryly. “Rules: no weapons. You can yield, but that means you lose the fight.”
“Fine,” he said, stripping off his “AC/DC” shirt. “I ain’t gonna need it, but you will.” His buddies laughed again as I stepped forward. I stopped myself, took off my glasses, and lay them on the hood of the Bomb. Ramirez had apparently stopped wearing his glasses last year. He probably couldn’t read much anyway.
I closed the distance between us to about six feet, took up a ready stance, and eyed him. “Whenever you’re ready. You wanted this fight; you can start it.”
This was going to hurt.
Well, I was right about his having practiced. He sprang into motion fast enough that I almost didn’t have time to get ready. His first blow hammered into my gut, glanced off muscles developed with thousands of tummy crunches. It was a solid hit but didn’t even slow me down.
I socked him with an uppercut, landing a blow, but on his left cheek. It was solid enough but I’d been aiming for his chin. Nonetheless he staggered back, shaking his head; he spit some blood, then advanced again, cheek already darkening.
He tried to kick me but I bounced away from his foot, took a glancing blow on my calf that raised a nice purple welt, later. I tried to grab that foot but missed. He rushed me again, but I was ready for it and ducked aside, then turned and gave him a hard shove in the back. He almost went over, recovered, turned, and aimed a punch at my face.
I missed deflecting his punch and there was a curious sort of crunk from my nose. I staggered back, some blood dripping from my nostrils. He charged me, trying to press his advantage, but I ducked aside and tripped him. He hit the ground hard enough to raise dust; I stepped back and stood ready, waiting for him to get up.
He rolled to his feet. “C’mon, you chickenshit! You fag!”
“Who’s the fag?” I fired back. “You haven’t got one good hit on me yet, you cock-sucking turd.”
Before he actually began to move, I—despite my 20/200 vision—could see him get ready to move. He charged me, and as he moved into my threat range, I had a fist on its way to meet him.
To this day I am amazed I did not break his nose with that blow—or my hand, for that matter—because that punch stopped him dead in his tracks, and knocked him onto his ass. I’ll probably never forget the sound it made.
As he fell onto his ass I yelped and shook my hand, swearing continuously. My fingers moved, though—nothing broken, although I’d split the skin on three knuckles. My lip was itching; I reached up to scratch at it—and only then did I realize that he’d hit me, busting my lower lip wide open.
There was a little silence as everyone regarded this tableau. Ramirez got to his feet, still shaking his head, twin rivers of blood running down his face.
“Had enough yet?” He asked.
“Have you?” I fired back. To my surprise, my injuries really didn’t hurt. Not yet, anyway.
He moved in, feinting high, bouncing another fist off my ribs. While he was recovering from that I socked him again, but he ducked; I got his shoulder instead of his gut, and then one of his fists blotted out the scene—came right up to my eye, hit, and receded; I didn’t even feel it.
The one time I got into a real serious fight, the entire world went blank. One second we were in the gymnasium, and it seems as if I blinked, and we were in the hallway outside the gym. I have no idea what transpired between those two scenes.
But I have taken a few punches. Maybe that's enough.
The other thing: I don't put women in scenes where they have to fight, generally speaking, with the exception of some fantasy efforts I've fooled around with; and since those are "sword and sorcery" things there are ways around the physical realities of intersex combat.
(Tales From The Rufus contains a woman who trains to be a warrior maiden, and discovers that only really works well in myth and legend. She ends up changing professions to something more suited to the lithe and dextrous. I haven't written any of that yet.)
In Apocalyptic Visions and the universe in which it's set, in general, women don't go into fighting professions with the exception of a very few outliers. Okay, the woman from a high-gravity world, she's able to beat up guys from standard gravity worlds. The character who's a woman in the ground forces? She's logistics, not a grunt. And so on.
...not above writing the occasional cat fight, though, either. Heh.
* * *
Trying to find when it was I fixed the bike's fender, I've been looking through old Fungus posts, and found the following advice:
"Use the little guns first; the ammunition is cheaper."