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There's so much, where to begin? Well, it depends. Most of this is Narnia, though there are a few other things, too. To decide if you are interested in "Not My Children's Narnia" (I'm an adult writing mostly adult characters for mostly adult readers) try Under Cover, or the first three chapters of The Stone Gryphon, Part 1 (Oxfordshire 1942), and/or the first four chapters of By Royal Decree. If you don't like those, you probably won't like the rest of it.

Never tell me the word countCollapse )

Exciting News -- Athena's Daughters II

I learned this week that a short story I submitted to Silence in the Library Publishing was accepted for publication in the planned anthology, Athena's Daughters, Volume II.   This anthology features science fiction, fantasy, and genre written by women, about women.   Athena's Daughters Volume 1 is already in publication and features works by many talented writers, including Janine Spendlove, Cleolinda Jones, Tricia Barr, Jean Rabe, Jennifer Brozek, and Gail Martin.  I'm so honored to be included in this anthology and in the company of so many wonderful women writers.

I hope you'll consider supporting Silence in the Library and their many wonderful works through Kickstarter. Their Heroes -- A Diverse Superhero Anthology, is still live on Kickstarter and features some great stories -- I heard Janine Spendlove read hers at Origins and loved it.  You'll also get works by Tim Zahn, Mike Stackpole, and the late, great, Aaron Allston. 

I'll post more about Athena's Daughters Vol. 2 as it becomes available. 

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NFE Letter

Thanks so much!  I’ve been doing the NFE since 2010 and have never been disappointed.  Despite the character-centric match up, the fact is, I’m pretty agnostic as to characters for the NFE. Whatever we've been matched on, don't worry because I like just about anything and what I don't like has to do with tone and characterization, not particular characters.   From my previous prompts, you can glean the following:

What I love:

  • UST; witty banter and snark; Politics, finance or military strategy; World War 2; Worldbuilding; Gap-filling; Culture clash (within Narnia or Narnia vs. Spare Oom); healthy, normal, romantic relationship between consenting adults (canon pairing or OC); someone being extraordinarily clever and getting out of a jam; any Narnian (Pevensie or otherwise) observed from a third person point of view.
  • A happy ending, delightful characterization, and to laugh at least once
  • Pagan and/or mythological influences;
  • Adults and old souls in young bodies;
  • A Narnia with creaky wheels, the faint smell of manure, grass stains, open windows, and lots of animal hair that everyone is too polite to comment upon
  • I prefer humor over angst and sex over violence.
  • Cross-overs!  With Bujold universe, either Chalion or Vorkosigan; I’ve also developed an unhealthy focus on Peter and Eowyn, Lucy and Aragorn, and Susan and Eomer.  I’m more agnostic about Edmund and Faramir.  Anyone and dragons.  Lucy as a Time Lord; Susan with Sarah Jane Smith or Peggy Carter.  Marvel Universe is great, too.  Edmund slumming with Barton and Natasha; Peter as a Howling Commando.  Warehouse 13 or Harry Potter.  Polly, Digory, and classic ACD Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson. 
  •  AU and canon divergence is great too.  A Golden Age > 15 years, so, therefore I'd love an AU look with adult Pevensies, OC consorts, and the next gen.
  • Similarly, I’d love a Spare Oom AU with a happily ever after and no train crash
  • I did request Lucy or Aravis centric stories but if that doesn't interest you, I love any fem-centric work.  I love Hwin, Mrs. Beaver, Polly, Jill, and Susan as well.  I like the guys, too, particularly Peter, Edmund, Digory and Eustace.  I'm more interested in periods other than the Telmarine era onward and really I'd be very happy if you just ignore TLB completely.

 What I definitely don't want in my fic: it's a short list but pretty strongly held:  explicit m/m (everything else is OK); excessive angst, gore or violence; any dub-con whatsoever (Rilian & Lady of the Green Kirtle (OK); Susan written as "Fallen Away From Narnia because of Lipstick and Nylons"; Lucy sidelined or being protected by her overbearing big brothers and worry-wart sister


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Narnia Fic Exchange 2014

I'm just going to borrow/copy/plagiarize the excellent summary of [personal profile] edenfalling . The Narnia Fic Exchange 2014 sign ups are live, until August 1!  It is a great exchange that </a></b></a>snacky has run since 2008. This year it's moving from LJ to AO3, which means it will no longer be a double-blind exchange (in other words, writers now know who their recipients are) and the stories will all go live at once and be anonymous for a week instead of being posted one per day to LJ and remaining anonymous until all are up.  Alas, this means I lose that great tag line, 30 days of fic, but that's OK.  It's a great, great exchange and lots of wonderful authors participate.

Dates and information are here and here (LJ and DW).

The NFE has never been a very large exchange -- there were only twenty fics in 2008, which rose to all of thirty-seven (not including Madness ficlets) in 2013 -- but the general quality is very high and it's a lot of fun. If you have any interest in Narnia fandom, come give it a chance! Signups run until August 1, so you have a few days to consider your options.

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Narnia Fic Exchange 2014


Nominations have begun for the 2014 Narnia Fic Exchange!  This year it's on AO3 and not double-blinded, so you will know your recipient!!

Thanks so much to [personal profile] snacky  for running it again this year.  It's a great exchange and I encourage you all to check it out!  Nominate!  Sign up!  Read!  Review!  It's lots of fun and the quality of fic is amazingly high. 

If you need an AO3 account, ask around.  I probably have some invite codes and others do too. 

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Aaron Allston Memorials

Last night many friends of Aaron Allston gathered at Origins Game Fair.  Janine Spendlove, Dunc at Club Jade, and others have posted pictures.  At the auction, we raised $1500 for the Aaron Allston Foundation, an organization dedicated to two fitting memorials to Aaron's life -- furthering and encouraging young writers and providing medical assistance funds to writers and game designers who should never have to go without needed medications. 

There were lots of tie-dye, Hawaiian shirts and puns.  People whom I have never seen in anything but all black were wearing Hawaiian shirts.  (I'll let you guess who that might have been).  The Library part of Origins Game Fair and the publishing house, Silence in the Library were celebrating Aaron's life and contributions all weekend.  Silence in the Library (who has a new kickstarter going) was selling absolutely hideous tie-dyed wrist bands with the words, "Yub Yub Commander" all proceeds to the Aaron Allston Foundation. 

I did end up doing the reading from Wraith Squadron where the Yub, Yub, Commander came from -- Aaron was the Emperor of Club Jade and I had a button that said, "Yub, Yub Emperor" on it.  It was sad and wonderful celebration of an amazing man's life.

Many said wonderful and moving things, including Tim Zahn and Mike Stackpole, Janine Spendlove, Ron Garner, Bryan Young and many others shared their thoughts and memories.  It was a very moving and fitting good bye and my thanks to all who created such a loving memorial.

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Aaron Allston excerpts and quotes?

So I was asked to make a reading contribution to an Aaron Allston memorial next week at Origins and was wondering if anyone had any ideas of favorite quotes or excerpts from his work?  If you do, please drop me a line or a comment.  thanks!

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Narnia Meta

There's an interesting article on Buzz Feed I spotted today -- maybe you've already seen it, but I hadn't until this AM.  I find, in particular, this paragraph illuminating:

But this is the Chronicles’ greatest, redeeming strength: that sowed within are the seeds of their own dogma’s destruction. The machinery, the logic, of Narnia itself resists its author’s heavy-handed lessons. Though Lewis pushes Susan out of heaven, he cannot take back the founding tenet of the series — that “once a king or queen of Narnia, always a king or queen of Narnia” — which is truer than her absence. The commonplace wisdom of “jolly decent” and “jolly rotten” ways of being in the world that transcend gender and culture and age and even species manages to overthrow, in a short aside, the very Christianity Lewis tries to spoonfeed his readers with. Goodness, not faith, rules. The mean-spirited, bigoted, and pedantic pieces of the books still exist, but in fundamental tension with Narnia itself. The Chronicles, I believe, have a will of their own.

This is so true.  As anyone who has struggled with Lewis' conflicting messages, with the details of the food but not the geography, the problem of Susan, no linguistic shifty, no technological advancement,  Aslan's occasional arbitrary cruelty, this is very reassuring.  Narnia, the best of Narnia, transcends the human limits of its creator and even its sometimes not so benevolent lion deity.
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Remix Reveals

So, I plugged these earlier but I need to do so again. I received two remixes,

In the main exchange, [personal profile] snacky wrote It's Hard Out There for a Princess (The Princess Peony Pavane) in which she tells the story of Princess Peony (Even More Dim) from By Royal Decree. I feel really badly for the difficulties that were obviously involved for the poor writers who got me as as an assignment for remix in the exchange.  I am all the more delighted that Snacky stepped up at the last minute.  She gave Peony the story she deserved. I told Snax in comments that I'd originally envisioned Peony in the Lone Islands and recognizing who Harold the Clerk is. She ended up becoming Constance Meryl. It's really made me want to return to that snippet and write it.  I love Snacky's work.

The Liz Culmer [personal profile] edenfalling wrote Sword and Stake (Hath Yet Her Honor and Her Toil) a Buffy/Narnia xover in which Lucy is training Watchers. She's now written a second follow on here where Lucy the Not-Slayer kills her first vampire and has Words with the Council representative.  It's a great crack cross over and I always love Liz's work too.  I was really lucky she did these.

As for what I wrote, well, And all we need of hell (The "Sometimes it lasts in love but sometimes it hurts instead" Remix)
It's a Harry Potter post DH story.  I remixed a story in which ghost Snape continues a very unhealthy obsession for Harry and literally haunts Godric's Hollow.  I struggled for a while trying to do it from Ginny's pov.  Then, I hit on going into Snape's pov, and so we get the surprise of what Ginny does and how she pretty much kicks his ass from one end of Godric's Hollow to the other.  So, writing a scary, powerful, smart, PISSED Ginny Weasley, with a baby at her hip and a wand in her hand was FUN.

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H&M, Epilogue, Acceptance of the Terms

And so Harold and Morgan has concluded. The chapter is here, based heavily upon some meme responses and requests here, including E's Acceptance of the Terms and requests by Adaese and Syrena. I am going to go ahead and make a plea. If you did read it and liked it, could you let me know and please leave a review?

I guess I should say something about the characterization of Edmund Linch -- he (and Liv) are both pretty critical of their older generation. He's vowing to do it differently and Liv is there pushing him on. A lot of this is the arrogance of youth and the "I won't make the mistakes they did." He wants to strike his own path, establish his own rule, and that's not a bad thing. It can, however, be hard to read, as if some young one is just trashing all the good that came before. He's not -- Ed is just making his own way. They are young and think they know everything and I let them enjoy that surety that comes with youth.

Liv sort of leaped off the page. In pieces that didn't make the cut, I played a lot with her being very much inspired by Lucy, though with more of Susan's traditional femininity (she is 2-3 years older than he is). And I enjoyed writing their relationship, which took an unexpected turn toward the sensual, which I hope isn't off putting -- but that's where this all started. There's a lot of guilt and baggage both in H&M (for instance the way the Bankers and Calormenes look down on Narnians) and in I love not Man the less with the bonding rites. Liv and Ed are obviously way beyond that, crazy in love, completely devoted to one another, and always have been, and have a very positive and equal relationship. This chapter ended up pulling in things from nearly all my other work.

And I killed Jalur (that was Syrena's fault). And Lambert.

I had promised a second epilogue, Rejection of the Terms, in the vein of Lost in Translation's Everybody Stays, Nobody Leaves. I liked the 7000 words or so I've pulled together. The idea, which doesn't hang together completely, is set up at the beginning of Acceptance. Peter has the choice to again chase the White Stag or not. Chasing the wish leads them back to Spare Oom. It poses the same issue that underlies a lot of the work -- If you act, does it mean you don't have faith? Are you the Foolish Faun? It's at the heart of Food for Thought and the ultimate split between Peter and Susan over whether to use the rings. Peter will act, because that's what Peter does, even if maybe he should not, in this case to literally chase a wish. So the epilogue splits at this point. Does Peter chase the Stag (Acceptance of the Terms) or does he not chase the Stag (Rejection of the Terms). This piece with Dinan I owe to Adaese btw.

Rejection of the Terms is very Peter and Morgan heavy, with lots of added children sword play and food fights. it poses the idea that both of them come to terms with what family means and the possibility of letting go of expectation -- also, very much a Peter character issue. It was too long to include in this update and once Acceptance of the Terms was all on the page, I was happy with its happy ending.
a little more on Rejection and what I might or might not do with itCollapse )

if you read, thank you, so much. I'm very grateful.

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