January 1st, 2017

i'm a janeite, women's work, shapely sentences, a room of one's own

Fork That Clown Nook (The Good Place, Eleanor + Chidi)

Hi, everybody!

It's been a pretty great New Year's weekend thus far - highlights include finishing reading the Yuletide collections, watching two classic eps of The X-Files ("her name is Bambi?"), catching the "Whacking Day" ep of The Simpsons, and spending a lot of time in the kitchen. I've cooked a big batch of black-eyed peas, made up a recipe for peanut-butter/banana/oatmeal loaf, and shelled four pomegranates. And the lazy day continues tomorrow! Whoo-hoo!

So, now that reveals have happened, let's talk a little about Yuletide. As I said, I wrote five stories, but before we get there, let's take a look at the astonishingly good story that ChibiSquirt wrote for me: Not the Worst Story I Know [Sarah Monette's Doctrine of Labyrinths]. It's Mehitabel, set when she's Stephen's consort, asked to play Porphyria Levant on stage, and so of course she starts thinking about the obligation d'âme. And that triggers her to think about Mildmay and what she thought of him then and what she thinks of him now that it's over between them, and just trust me, the story is SO smart and SO good and sounds just like Tabby.

I only hope that my recipient natacup82 felt half as pleased with what I wrote for my main assignment. It was for The Good Place, a show that has - in the space of only nine episodes so far! - continuously reinvented itself and moved every moving piece and some I thought would be fixed. If you haven't yet seen the show, you're missing out (though I'll admit that the first ep, which does a lot of table-setting, was a bit of a slog). I got lucky in that the show went to some very interesting places and resolved some questions while raising others, and then in early November announced that it was on hiatus until early January (it comes back this week!), so I had plenty of time to get my bearings and start to write. I wanted to try to hit the balance between being bad and getting better that Eleanor is negotiating plus uncertainty about what she wants her relationship with Chidi to be and what it even is right now. I had a lot of fun writing it. My girl htbthomas did a great beta on this (and I got to return the favor when she picked up a pinch-hit in the same fandom).

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As always, I'd love to hear what you think.

This same entry also appears on Dreamwidth, at http://innie-darling.dreamwidth.org/459905.html.
lusty, mf you mf, good enough to eat, stays on task

Eating a Peach (Push: Nick/Cassie, explicit)

The next story I wrote was in the Push fandom, and I recruited the person who got me into that fandom - that dirty, dirty enabler musesfool - to beta for me. The recipient, caphairdadbeard, seemed to want what I want from Push fic, namely Nick and Cassie sexing each other up when Cassie's just a bit older. I figured I could write that, and I have to say, I really like how this piece turned out - Nick feels authentically crazed and turned on by her and Cassie just keeps moving forward. Vic helped a lot by making me reconsider the ending and then misjudged how absolutely shameless I am when she jokingly suggested a title having to do with eating peaches (it makes sense within the context of the story, but if you need a spoiler for a story that's less than two thousand words, check out the icon).

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As always, I'd love to hear what you think.

This same entry also appears on Dreamwidth, at http://innie-darling.dreamwidth.org/460036.html.
sari, heavy-lidded

Sail Upon the Land (Six of Crows: Nina+Inej, Inej/Kaz)

I wanted to surprise musesfool with a fic, and since I only picked up Leigh Bardugo's Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom because of her, that seemed like the right fandom to write in. I creeped on vic's journal and found that ryfkah was a frequent commenter on all things relating to the SoC series and so I asked her to beta for me, and she proved to be wonderfully insightful. Except for how needlessly young all the characters are (while acting like they're in their thirties at least), I don't have a single significant complaint about these books - they're a great read and you'll enjoy them a lot. The title is from Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, which I was looking at because I remembered the bit where Titania is reminiscing about her pregnant handmaiden, whose belly has swollen like a sail catching the wind, and that image of a ship's full sails was important to the last section of this story and also to situate Inej properly. (A fun fact that is fun only to me: three of the five stories I wrote this year for Yuletide, including this one, feature waffles, specifically friends strengthening their bonds over waffles. I love waffles - maybe I should be on the Satellite of Love.)

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As always, I'd love to hear what you think.

This same entry also appears on Dreamwidth, at http://innie-darling.dreamwidth.org/460311.html.
i'll have what he's having, all the world's a stage, the power of imagination

The Optics of These Eyes Behold Felicity (Captive Prince: Damen/Laurent)

While I was procrastinating on writing my longest Yuletide fic, I ended up writing a very short little ficlet in the fandom for C. S. Pacat's Captive Prince. I only started the series after the third book was published in the US earlier this year, and when I finished I thought that it was not a fandom I could imagine writing in, though I did want to try writing something fluffy and funny in which Laurent has to get glasses and is his usual charming self about it. Surprisingly, no one made that specific request, so I was free to write it as a ficlet and choose a recipient on my own. I picked dsudis out of all the people who requested Damen/Laurent Captive Prince fic because I like her writing a lot and also very much appreciate her AO3 icon. I got this done in about ninety minutes and then bookwyrm (from the beta list) did a great last-minute beta for me. I was surprised by the response this one got (particularly since it was a handwavy AU because I couldn't quite remember where all the characters finished the trilogy), but I guess the fandom appreciates fluff. The title is from Sir Thomas Browne's lovely Religio Medici, which was the only thing I could think of with the word "optics," and which I seem not to have used before (though I could have sworn I'd used RM in a fannish context previously).

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As always, I'd love to hear what you think.

This same entry also appears on Dreamwidth, at http://innie-darling.dreamwidth.org/460563.html.
bright-eyed, adorable isn't even the word, holy cats, a little cutie pie

And Whether Pigs Have Wings [1 of 2] (Selfie: Charmonique+Henry, Henry/Eliza)

And, finally, here's the last fic I posted for this year's Yuletide, though the first I started writing, because I started it more than two years ago. (I went back and checked, and it looks like I started it around Thanksgiving 2014, a few weeks after the show was stupidly canceled, and one day after my other story in this fandom - The Perfectionist - was posted. I kept working on it sporadically and thought maybe I could get it done to post for my birthday, but since Yuletide assignments came out a week before my birthday, all of my ficcing energy went toward my assignment - this was the first year since I started this journal eleven years ago that I didn't have a story to post on my birthday.) I already knew and liked Ghostcat not just from her own extraordinary fics but also from her stellar work betaing a co-authored fic I worked on, and her letter asked for anything having to do with Selfie; she clearly missed the show like I did, and I knew from her kind comment on "The Perfectionist" that we liked the same things about the show. I asked blithers, who'd been such a champ in helping me with "The Perfectionist" to work her beta magic again, and she made me think a lot about the shape of the story and how to edit it judiciously; it's so much better than it was before. I had about 10K before I picked it back up for Yuletide, at which point I cut around 5K and various plotlines and then went from there. The title is from Lewis Carroll's "Jabberwocky" and was meant to get across that sense of "when pigs fly" that Henry has when he thinks about getting an amazing and devoted girlfriend (silly Henry - you're played by JOHN CHO!).

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part 2/2
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As always, I'd love to hear what you think.

This same entry also appears on Dreamwidth, at http://innie-darling.dreamwidth.org/460926.html.