rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
1. I've taken my last dose of anti-cancer pills this morning, hopefully ever.  Nice timing.

2. Yuletide opens tomorrow.  I discovered this huge fanfic gift exchange four years ago when I was pregnant and rottenly ill with it.  One of my dwircle/LJ friends (don't even remember who!) linked to their gift .  Over the next week I found myself working through the collection as a welcome distraction and bulwark against how miserable I felt - one particular long cold train journey was made bearable by the stories I read on my little smartphone as we trundled along.

I've participated a couple of times now; not this year because for obvious reasons I didn't think I could commit to writing anything (I was right). But the amazing thing about the gift exchange is that all the stories are available to anyone to read.  I now have a little routine: I download all the fics that look interesting in the fandoms I know, and load them into my ebook library held in Calibre.  Then I browse my way through the still-anonymous fics, clicking through from the handy end link to kudos / comment / bookmark as appropriate.  I never ever finish doing this before authors are revealed (and I get emails for all the authors I'm subscribed to), but it means I can continue to read fics anonymously throughout the year.  And of course I look out for recs by others and follow those too.  It's one huge indulgent reading festival, and it starts tomorrow.

3. My children are both SO EXCITED about Christmas; I think about 90% the haul of presents under the tree, and 10% the promise of lots of indulgent food.  It's due to stop raining soon, at which point I'm dragging them to the playground to work off some of their energy.
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Lots of these are short, and there's a lot less of them than the main Yuletide collection, so I rocketed through the collection last night while being kept awake by small children. These are my favourites.

Drabbles:
I'm not going to say much about these because they're only 100 words each and you might as well read that rather than my blather - just that I thought each one worked really well for the fandom it was in:


Justice and Mercy (100 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: Imperial Radch Series - Ann Leckie
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Mercy of Kalr, Justice of Toren One Esk Nineteen | Breq

Memorial for a Tea Set (100 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: Imperial Radch Series - Ann Leckie
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Kalr Five, Justice of Toren One Esk Nineteen | Breq

On Saturday We Went For A Picnic (100 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: The Very Hungry Caterpillar - Eric Carle
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Original Characters

Transfer of Title (100 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: Tom's Midnight Garden - Philippa Pearce
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Tom Long, The Clock

Comfortable (100 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: A Civil Contract - Georgette Heyer
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Jenny Chawleigh, Lydia Deveril

Agent of F.I.E.R.C.E. (105 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: Black Widow (Comics)
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Liho (Marvel) & Natasha Romanova



Non-drabbles, in increasing order of wordcount:
Black Beauty - Anna Sewell, Imperial Radch Series - Ann Leckie, Dragonriders of Pern - Anne McCaffrey, Persuasion - Jane Austen, Watership Down - Richard Adams )
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Two yuletide gifts.

And you know what's even better than that?

Getting thank you comments for the stories I wrote before I was even awake enough to read my own gifts. Yay for happy recipients. 


My gifts, let me show you them:

To Roam Between Stars
(2757 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes
Rating: Teen And Up Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Abigail Brand/Carol Danvers, Carol Danvers/Janet Van Dyne, Abigail Brand/Carol Danvers/Janet Van Dyne
Characters: Abigail Brand, Janet Van Dyne, Carol Danvers, Nick Fury

Abigail Brand is a minor character on A:EMH which is the brightest most colourful amazing animated series about the Avengers, and this story is about her growing up and coming to join the Avengers.  In her brief appearances on the show, Abigail impressed me with her competence and ruthlessness, and this story expands on that.


Blank Pages (3040 words) by Anonymous
Fandom: Werewolf Marines - Lia Silver
Rating: Mature
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Characters: Echo (Werewolf Marines), Charlie (Werewolf Marines)
Additional Tags: Hurt/Comfort, Sister-Sister Relationship, Storytelling, Yuletide Treat, Misses Clause Challenge

I have enthused before about the Werewolf Marines series, and this is a lovely "prequel" to the book about Echo, filling in more about Charlie and with very evident sisterly affection.  I particularly liked the use of Little Women fanfic inside the story, and I only regret that it's so long since I read Little Women that I'm probably missing some of the context.



I'm now busy downloading every story in the archive that looks like My Kind Of Thing to my phone so I can read it safely anonymous there, as I for sure will not get through them all in the week before they are revealed.
rmc28: (wonderfrown)
Both my assignments are finished, named, and uploaded. 
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Because my spare time is miniscule, so I should actually try scheduling this.
lists, I love lists )
rmc28: (bat-funny)
Thank you so much for signing up for yuletide. I'm sure you're going to do a great job. It's pretty likely you don't know me, so here's a bit about my general likes and dislikes, and then I've basically just cut and pasted my Details section for each request for reference.   Hopefully this will spark off something if you need it to; you may already have a story in mind in which case go for it!



Likes: teamwork, competence, friendship/affection, women being awesome, people valuing each other and working together, people communicating like adults, people being awkward and embracing it anyway, optimistic or hopeful endings.

I'm comfortable with ratings from general through to explicit smut, please go with your comfort level and your own sense of the characters you're writing. If you do write sex, I like it when everyone is having a good time and it's a consistent continuation of their relationship together (whether that is a one-time friends-with-benefits or lifelong monogamy or anything in between).

Tropes: I like friends-to-lovers, road trips, odd-couple partnerships, and also the crackier fanfic things like soulmates, wingfic, A/B/O, genderswap, bodyswap, groundhog day. The latter group especially work for me where they are exploring who these people are, how they would work if that thing was true / that thing was changed.

Basically I am after "tell me MORE about these people" whether that is filling in a missing scene, adding some backstory, speculating What Happened Next, or sticking them all in a coffeeshop AU for fun and giggles. I am an especial sucker for competence: show me my darlings being brilliant at what they do and I will adore you for it.



Dislikes:
I'd really prefer not to have an explicitly grim or really dark story. I need some kind of hope at the end. If you are writing hurt/comfort I prefer the hurt to be mostly offscreen, and the focus on the comfort. I have a sufficient humiliation/embarrassment squick to find most sitcoms unwatchable, so I'd be really grateful if you avoid that. In general I find it hard to cope with reading harm to children, graphic sexual violence and non-consensual sex. Please avoid lengthy focus on pregnancy or childbirth (but passing mention is fine, as is care of babies or children).



As for my requests: I would love ANY of these, so don't worry about sticking to the one you match on if you find you can do one of the others better. The Yuletide rules say you are expected to write something including all the characters I've nominated. I personally don't expect you to do that (and in the Imperial Radch case it might be a real struggle to do so) so please don't feel you have to shoehorn someone in to meet a quota if you have a perfectly good story going on with other of my nominated character(s) without them.



The Brothers Sinister Series - Courtney Milan
- Violet Waterfield, Sebastian Malheur, Rose Sweetly, Jane Fairfield

Ok, I LOVE this series so much, and Jane and Violet and Rose are all such awkward darlings, Jane embracing her bad taste and occasional lapses of manners, and Violet and Rose getting so engrossed in their science and maths respectively. Sebastian's love and care of Violet in The Countess Conspiracy never fails to bring me to tears. Sometimes they are of laughter, like when he flirts with her using classifications of rakes.

So here I would love to see a bit more of Violet and Jane's friendship (which is only lightly hinted at in the books. Maybe some scenes fleshing that out. I can't think of a scenario where Violet's genetics research would ever need a computer, but if it did, then Rose would be the obvious choice. Or maybe just my adorable science girls geeking out at each other and sharing tales of woe like having to stop sciencing to go and meet social obligations. I'd love to see Sebastian basking in his faculty-wife role, maybe teaming up with Jane to fend off critics of women doing science.


Imperial Radch Series - Ann Leckie
- Nyseme Ptem, Sievarden Vendaai, Tisarwat, Mercy of Kalr

I am completely smitten by this series, and in particular by the way I get more out of the books with every reread. This is one where I think it's particularly unfair to expect you to write something involving ALL of my nominated characters, as Nyseme Ptem hasn't yet appeared or interacted directly with any of the others, and is only referenced in the daily prayers of remembrance. (Unless you want to invent some backstory where she did know someone on Mercy of Kalr).

So ideas here: what Nyseme did and thought before she acted at Ime, how Sievarden treats Mercy of Kalr and what Mercy of Kalr thinks of her. Do they work together to manage their Captain? Tisarwat and Mercy of Kalr before and after her implants are disabled.

And if you want to include any of the other characters in this rich and fascinating series, please do. I just nominated the ones I most wanted to read (more) about.



Werewolf Marines - Lia Silver
- Charlie, Echo

I love this series, and I enthused about why in this entry. In case that's tl;dr, it boils down to: shapeshifting coolness without dodgy sexual politics; romantic protagonists who are living with believable mental illnesses, but are still attractive and allowed to find love; love does not magically fix everything.

I am particularly drawn to Echo in Prisoner and her deep attachment to Charlie, who is so very like her in appearance and unlike her in physical health and personality. Anything exploring their relationship, some of their history, even just them bantering together, maybe something from Charlie's point of view, maybe an external point of view on them both. Please don't take it in an incest direction though; I can see how that might be a plausible interpretation but it really wouldn't work for me with these characters.



Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes
- Abigail Brand, Carol Danvers, Janet Van Dyne

I really love this series, which I discovered after getting into the Marvel movies and the attached megafandom, and how different many of the characters are from their movie versions, and how many cool and interesting characters haven't even made it into the films yet.

Janet is lovely, the real heart of the Avengers, and pretty much the only one who stays in the team throughout the series. I'm utterly fascinated by Carol and her friendship with Janet, and her response to acquiring powers; in particular her utter rejection of Mar-Vell's attempts to protectively coddle her, and by extension Earth, after inflicting her with Kree powers. We don't see much of Abigail Brand, but what we do see is competence, decisiveness, charisma and leadership (like when she recruits Sydren), and hints at an interesting backstory: "who said I was human?".

So anything with these three working together would be wonderful: is there a friendship as well as a working relationship between Abigail and Carol? How did Abigail come to work for SWORD? How do Janet and Abigail get on? Maybe a story where they work together against an alien threat, or maybe just a girls night out telling war stories. If you wanted to go in a femslash direction (with any two or all three) that would be hot and awesome, and if you wanted to stick with friendship and teamwork that would be delightful and awesome.



Gravity (2013)

I would love to read anything exploring the world of this film. It's one that seems ripe for what happened next stories - we don't even know where Ryan Stone eventually lands, or who is going to find her, or what is happening to the world with so much satellite infrastructure destroyed. There's so much to speculate over what was happening on the ground, maybe at mission control, maybe at a random school or astronomy club or something watching what's going on.

Or you might want to look at what happened before. We know that Stone is a just-competent-enough astronaut, having done the minimum six months training because she's just that good an engineer that they need her in space to fix Hubble. How did she get into that situation? How did she get through training? Did she make any friends?




Edge of Tomorrow (2014)
- Rita Vrataski

I just rewatched this film, and oh wow it is such a good film. I especially love Rita Vrataski who is the hard-ass hero being gradually-less-incompetently helped by her sidekick Cage. I would love anything more about her.

It could be from before the movie starts, exploring what happened at Verdun, or who Hendricks is and how she came to kill him over 300 times. It could be why she signed up, and how much training she did before Verdun (the opening credits say "just a few months training" I think). It could be how she met Dr Carter (he has that lovely throwaway line about "well and then I met Rita so now I'm just a maintenance worker with delusions").

It could be any scene within the move from her point of view rather than Cage's. Or it could be what happens next, whether on the micro-level of what Cage says when he finishes laughing at the end of the film to the huge macro-level, with armies marching to meet each other over a devastated Europe.

rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
I have nominated fandoms for Yuletide for the first time. I may even manage to sign up this year.  

(My brain weasels, let me show you them: I may need handholding for actually asking for what I would like when the time comes.  I'm no longer worried about writing 1000+ words for a gift exchange in a shared fandom, but 10-100 words on something-for-me was too much of a barrier last year.)

Anyway, I nominated Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes after finding myself adding evidence to the argument it should be accepted.  I also nominated Imperial Radch - Ann Leckie which has only 3 works on AO3 at the moment.  Finally I nominated Brothers Sinister Series - Courtney Milan which doesn't appear at all on AO3, but which I would *love* to read fanfic for (Women being awesome and doing science! And hot men who treat them like people!).  As [personal profile] metaphortunate put it "Courtney Milan, back to her: it's like a romance novel, with the focus on women, and the comfort reading style, and the sexy parts, but without the bit where the women are doing everything Wrong and the men swoop in and correct them."

So I'm really hoping these all get accepted, that I actually manage to sign up and offer/ask for these, and that there will be an increased amount of fanfic for all three to read on Christmas Day, whether or not any of it is produced by or for me.

Also in fannish mode: Ancillary Sword is released two weeks today.
rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
I'm about to get busy again so I'm posting the recs for stories so far that I've really liked. I'm now downloading everything that looks interesting to my phone while it'll still show as author "Anonymous". That'll make it easier to separate out the yuletide stories from all my other ebooks, and also keep a bit of the author-anonymity mystery.

So anyway, 10 Things I Hate About You to Discworld, behind the cut. I'll edit to add the actual authors in after the reveal.

Read more... )
rmc28: (reading)
Last Christmas, I followed someone's link (probably from dreamwidth) to their Yuletide story, and that vast collection of stories helped keep me distracted from my pregnancy-related misery over the Christmas break.

So I signed up this year, and have enjoyed producing my assignment much more than I expected, and am extra grateful to [livejournal.com profile] atreic, [personal profile] hilarita & my mother for beta-reading it. I also wrote a last-minute treat, too late to get it beta-read. Both of them have had positive comments, including from their respective recipients, and the rush from that is amazing.

I loved my own story-gift very much, and heartily recommend it to those enjoyed the source material:

shedding light (and a little fur) (2087 words) by Anonymous
Chapters: 1/1
Fandom: Cats of Grand Central - Diane Duane
Rating: General Audiences
Warning: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Hwaith/Rhiow
Characters: Rhiow, Hwaith, Mike (Cats of Grand Central)
Summary:

"He followed me home. Can I keep him?" Rhiow gets a little time to talk to Iaehh - about several things. What do you do when the Queen grants your wish?

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rmc28: Rachel smiling against background of trees, with newly-cut short hair (Default)
Rachel Coleman

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