I wrote seven stories for Yuletide. I considered doing one of those contests that everybody does and having people guess (two stories with a character named Hilary, two stories with a character named Gerald, two stories with a character named Eric), but never got one put up.
I feel so lucky this year. My Judy Bolton gift What the Cat Dragged In was everything I could have hoped for. Thank you JanLevine for writing it for me.
And thank you, all my wonderful recipients, who were so prompt to comment and so lovely when they did.
My assignment fic was Mon Cueur Ne Changera, or The Missing Heir for lionpyh. She requested The Lost Prince by Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Lymond Chronicles by Dorothy Dunnett and The Hilary Tamar Mysteries by Sarah Caudwell. I'd offered the third, read the second and somehow missed the first, but her journal made me want to read it, so I figured "I'll write her Hilary Tamar-the threesome she and franzeska and I were talking about in chat, throw in a Lymond quote or two, and ILL The Lost Prince from the library for my own personal enjoyment. So I reread the Hilary Tamar books and started The Game of Kings over Thanksgiving. This was my first major mistake.
Somewhere along the line I acquired The Lost Prince and started reading it. It was very slow going at first, because the author was invoking certain tropes I dislike (I knew who the prince was from the first because he was so fine of body and spirit). But then there was the Rat, who lionpyh wanted the focus to be on. He was also a gentleman's son, and though twisted in body, he was shown to be loyal and brave and true. And that's when I started to sort out my plot.
Inheritance tales were a staple of that era. 62 New Square dealt in inheritance cases. What if they went looking for Jem Ratcliffe because his father had had money once? The Samavia plot (becoming a democracy) was cribbed from what happened to Belsornia in the Chalet Books, the threesome plot stayed roughly as written and meanwhile, my copy of Pawn in Frankincense fell apart while I was reading it, I thought the "languish locked in L" scene was in Pawn when it was really in The Ringed Castle and once I finished The Ringed Castle I should have started writing, but I ended up reading Checkmate instead. Cramming three and a half Lymond books into one week was not the best idea I ever had.
The last thing I have to say about this story is regarding the title. It deliberately invokes an American (possibly also British) convention of the era (particularly prevalent in teen series such as The Rover Boys or Ruth Fielding) with the form of the title and subtitle. The title is from Tant que je vive which any Lymond fan would know well; the subtitle is, of course, a play on The Lost Prince.
I would like to thank franzeska for betaing and lionpyh for having exactly the response I was hoping for.
I wrote three pinch hits.
The Maze of Solitude was for Senji. I picked up this one because I knew every single one of their fandoms, but I was certain almost from the start I'd be writing Dungeons and Dragons. I don't have much to say about this story, except that this is what happens when I mainline all 29 episodes (and the audio readthrough of the final unproduced episode) in a few days. I have a very strong dislike of the "group is always right" mentality that was foisted on the writers by the network, and that comes out in the story I told.
Thank yous go to Senji for providing the great prompt (and forcing me to a reread of some of the Alliance/Union books) and elfwreck for betaing.
Snow Day was for thenewradical. I've written Chrestomanci before for Yuletide, and I knew I wouldn't have to review too much to get a story done before the deadline. Plot thanks go to cedara, who had mentioned Frau Holle, one of my favorite German folk figures, a day or two before. I wanted to write something about the magic that had been released by the events in The Pinhoe Egg and was partially inspired by the amount of snow that had fallen in England. The story steals elements from various folk tales (the comb, the mirror, the string), which seemed to fit very well with dwimmer magic. And they would, of course, be the good kids who did everything right, but in their own unique way.
Thank yous for this one go to thenewradical for the prompt (and apologies for not having Chrestomanci actually appear - I meant to and forgot) and to cedara for betaing and correcting my translation of Mother Holle from Mutter to Frau.
A Fine Romance was for sophiaiswisdom and can be completely blamed on custardpringle who has been writing very entertaining St George/Hilary fics. sophiaiswisdom wanted the beginnings of their romance at Oxford, and that is what she got. The timeline is vague, but it must be a year or so after Gaudy Night.
Of the four, this is the one where I was most uncertain about the settings and characters so I fretted over this one a bit, but I found a good Oxford beta in naraht and had custardpringle vetting my characterisations. And thank you to sophiaiswisdom for loving it.
I also wrote three treats.
The Pigeon Your Pigeon Could Smell Like was for cherryvanilla. I'm not sure when I came up with this crossover, but once I did I had to write it. I blame the fact that The Pigeon has a twitter account. Betaed by idella and ♥ to cherryvanilla for requesting the Pigeon again.
Survival of the Fittest for fox1013. This I blame on prompt juxtaposition - having Survivor RPF and Sharktopus prompts in close proximity got me thinking. The other influence was too much Total Drama Island, and I will freely admit that this Jeff is modeled on Chris (who was modeled on Jeff, so I feel perfectly justified). In the original version of this prompt, Survivor was canceled due to the deaths, and Jeff was going to see if Julie Chen would let him help host Big Brother, but I decided this was funnier. No beta, but thanks to fox1013 for the great prompts.
The Path Ahead was a thank you fic for kristin, the_afterlight and paranoidangel. I managed to convince all three of them to watch Black Hole High, they all requested it and none was written. It was not my best work, having just made the madness deadline, but I wanted all three of them to know how much fun I had rewatching the show when they were watching it for the first time. ♥
This is my first attempt at crossposting between LJ and DW. I plan to start doing this more frequently, but it will take me a while to get into the habit.
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