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Thank you to all who sent birthday wishes. That was very nice. It was a really putrid day, as my birthdays so often are. I mean, starting the day with a fraud alert on your credit card, so very much not fun. Happy Birthday to you from Chase Account Holder Card Services. Fortunately, I had already ordered my peanut butter pretzels and coffee from Amazon so those deliveries were uninterrupted. The weekend improved as it went on, most especially beacause of the Narnia Fic Exchange and Madness reveals. The Main Collection is here (25 stories of awesome) and the Madness Collection is here.

I got 4 madness stories. WHAT??? Also, I wrote one, plus 2 stories for the main exchange and received an amazing gift. So...

What I received
I received a wonderful Temeraire/Narnia cross by the superlative wingedflight21 An Unusual Dragon Situation Returning to Cambridge after a voyage across the Eastern Sea leads Eustace to realize that he is not the same boy who fell through the painting. He has grown in unexpected ways. It's wonderful. I'd spotted the fact that there was a Temeraire cross in the collection and was hoping it was for me and it WAS. As always, Winged's Eustace voice is pitch perfect.

Madness was an embarrassment of riches. edenfalling wrote A boat, beneath a sunny sky, a glorious slice of Aravis and Lasaraleen having a small adventure and brilliant bit of characterization
edenfalling ALSO wrote a wonderful and insightful Polly and Digory story, about the war to come in response to the prompt by several people, How the Skeleton Aches

The wonderful adaese wrote the wry and poignant
A correspondence between Bibi Tarkheena, wife to Kidrash Tarkaan, lord of Calavar Province, and her aunt Latana, High Priestess of Zardeena, being a selection from the Calavar archives, presented here for the edification and instruction of young ladies.
Which explains the whole of Aravis' situation from the point of view of the not-so-evil stepmother.

And I received The Little Sea by Transposable-Element which is a wonderful bit of Calormen pantheon and worldbuilding.

Thanks so much to the generous people who wrote these wonderful, wonderful works! GO! Read and Review!

I had huge problems writing, at first.  I've been incredibly busy with work writing and I've felt that Narnia, its fandom fen, and I are in the middle of an especially messy and painful divorce.  I've really wanted to just chuck it all and go to ground so it was really, really hard to write, at first.  Eventually, I forced myself, word by word and finally came out with three stories.

And what I wrote

I did two stories for the main exchange, one of which was blindingly obvious and one of which was definitely not.
My assignment:
That we may hear the whispers of the gods, for [personal profile] bedlamsbard (a very intimidating person to write for, let me tell you!)  Anyone who has read some of my musings on the Calormene Trickster god would have recognized this story.  It was a real mess in early drafts and was truly saved by freudiancascade.  Aravis isn't an  easy character for me for some reason.  I really enjoyed Lasaraleen and Hwin in this story.  I'd also wanted to do a much bigger story, hinted at here, of Cor's abduction (again) and Aravis riding off to rescue him.  Also hinted at, but not something I could develop, is that Aravis and Cor have issues, both individually and as a couple, and that Cor's time as slave definitely left its mark.  Freudiancascade asked me during one round of review if I really intended to imply that Cor and Aravis were probably queer -- and I said yep, that was intentional.  I really wanted to play with gender issues and how complicated that was by their personal histories and Archenland politics, but I just couldn't pull it off without it coming out incredibly sexist, so I tossed a lot of that.  The abduction was simply too big a story for the NFE -- this already clocked in at 10K, so I stripped out a lot and tried to focus in on Aravis becoming comfortable in her own skin.  I ended up blundering into sexy times even in one draft.  Egads.

The second story, a pinch hit, surely a surprise, As Waves Make Towards The Pebbl'd Shore for our NFE  mod and all around only good things should happen to her ever, [personal profile] snacky .  Peter/Caspian is one of Snacky's OTP's and she deserved a story written just for her for all her amazing work as mod and everything else.  So I wrote Peter/Caspian slash!  

A comment or two asked what was going on with the buzzing in Susan's purse.  That, as it turns out, is explained in my madnness story, Susan and Peggy Go Shooting (Again)which is a continuation of my Avengers MCU cross from the NFE  2 years ago.  I'm not sure if this is quite what the lovely aurilly had in mind but I had a lot of fun with it, particularly writing Peggy Carter, Howard Stark, and Col. Chester Phillips.

That's all!

This entry was originally posted at http://rthstewart.dreamwidth.org/110080.html.


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 7th, 2014 01:45 pm (UTC)
I am very glad that you wrote! (and the Narnia fandom messy divorce is edging into less likely territory?? -- said anxiously and hopefully.)
And I'm very impressed by people -- you and Liz! - who can write an assignment, pinch-hit and then write a madness story! I was just totally done in by that time.

Re: people being intimidating to write for - yes! That's a very scarey aspect of the AO3 hosting; I'd much rather write into the unknown. I like that AO3 allows for un-identified comments from the writers though, which are all labelled when the Reveal happens.
Oct. 11th, 2014 01:55 am (UTC)
It was really nice to finally have words come again. My main assignment was HARD. The Pinch Hit, once I started it, was easy for all that I really don't write m/m at all like ever. Heh. And then the madness, well there was just TOO MUCH there. But that one was fun. Thanks so much for all the support.
Oct. 9th, 2014 02:33 am (UTC)
I'm still making my way through all the fics but I did really enjoy the fic you wrote for bedlamsbard. And for you said about having a hard time writing Aravis, I thought you did pretty well.
Oct. 11th, 2014 01:56 am (UTC)
Thank you so much and thank you for reading and reviewing over on FF.net. The feedback over there is non-existent and it was really, really really nice to see a friendly face over there! thanks so much and I hope things begin to calm down for you.
Oct. 10th, 2014 05:21 pm (UTC)
I'm still reading all the NFE stories, but I really enjoyed your Cor/Aravis one. I was struck by your commentary here: Freudiancascade asked me during one round of review if I really intended to imply that Cor and Aravis were probably queer -- and I said yep, that was intentional.  I really wanted to play with gender issues and how complicated that was by their personal histories and Archenland politics, but I just couldn't pull it off without it coming out incredibly sexist, so I tossed a lot of that. 

And it reminded me of Aral/Cordelia from the Vorkosiverse. Where Cordelia is Aral's perfect partner, because he's attracted to soldiers in a world that can only accept him with a woman and that has only male soldiers. And then Cordelia arrives and solves his problem. And that's gender issues and the complications of personal histories and Barrayar politics, and well, maybe it comes across as kind of sexist when you think about it, but it totally works. So I really like the echoes of that in your story. (I was actually hoping someone would take on your prompt about a Narnia-Vorkosigan Saga crossover!)
Oct. 10th, 2014 06:04 pm (UTC)
Oh, I'm sorry, just realised I wasn't signed in for the previous comment -- that was me rambling on about Aral/Cordelia. And here, I found the quote from Mirror Dance, where Cordelia rather ruthlessly and matter-of-factly analyses her own relationship for Mark's benefit (of all people!):

"...I judge him to be bisexual, but subconsciously more attracted to men than to women. Or rather -- to soldiers. Not to men generally, I don't think. I am, by Barrayaran standards, a rather extreme, er, tomboy, and thus became the solution to his dilemmas. The first time he met me, I was in uniform, in the middle of a nasty armed encounter. He thought it was love at first sight. I've never bothered explaining to him that it was his compulsions leaping up."

So Aral simply could not have married any Barrayaran woman, just as maybe no Archenlandish woman would have done for your Cor in this story. (Is Archenlandish a word? I don't know...)

And it strikes me that although there are no gender issues going on in his case, Gregor/Laisa is also about his particular personal history rolled up with still more Barrayaran politics (which are arguably one and the same in his case anyway, with the Emperor being the Imperium in many ways...); he couldn't have married any Barrayaran woman either. Whole bunch of compulsion-driven cross-planet marriages in that series when you come to think of it, which makes it even more interesting that the main protagonist himself (Miles) ends up with a Barrayaran partner...

OK, I could keep rambling on forever, so I should probably stop :P Could I lure you into writing Vorkosigan fic? Not a Narnia crossover; just to take your awesome talents over to the Bujold fandom as well for a bit :)
Oct. 11th, 2014 02:08 am (UTC)
OK, first off, I was wondering what opinions you had the Nobel Peace Prize and Kailash Satyarthi sharing the prize with Malala Yousafzai -- Hindu Indian and Pakistani Muslim sharing the prize and from the press reports Mr. Satyarthi is deeply involved in preventing child trafficking?

Cordelia is so wonderful. Oh my gosh, so wonderful.
Anyway, a part of what is so intimidating about writing Vorkosian verse (and it's in Yuletide this year!) is that the writers who are in it are SO good and so know their Vor, and I just don't. Some of the books I've read so many times and others only once. It's very daunting, much like writing an NFE for Bedlamsbard.

Your observations about gender on Barrayar are fascinating. In what I was playing with but could not realize is that Aravis is probably at least bi, and Cor's sexuality is possibly confused by a history of abuse, but regardless, he's more attracted to boyish Aravis than girly Aravis and I think that in this case, as with Aral and no Barrayaran woman, Cor and no Archen woman probably makes sense, assuming she is traditionally feminine. There is a discussion in... I don't remember which book Gregor and Laisa meet but Alys does observe that Gregor isn't' interested in classic Vor beauties at all and I think there's a hint that maybe Laisa is a bit like his mother -- or that he's just running from Vor inbreeding.

Vorkosigan is in Yuletide this year!!

And it's lovely to hear from you!
Oct. 11th, 2014 12:44 am (UTC)
Very late on my comments, sorry. School hols down under, so we've been away for a bit 😄, with no Internet 😳. Got the notification yesterday when I got home. I'm slowly working my way through the new stories, and whispers of the gods is fantastic - I really love the way you write these characters. Sorry to hear about the crap birthday start, but I hope the day improved from there- peanut butter pretzels, yum!!!
Oct. 11th, 2014 02:08 am (UTC)
Thanks so much. It's really nice to hear from a few people over on ff.net. I hope your school hols have been going well and that you all had fun!
Oct. 11th, 2014 03:12 am (UTC)
Happy (belated) Birthday!!!

I hope everything is good. I am currently embroiled in Chase Card Services dispute myself, ongoing from july. July!! ugh

I've been randomly reading a bunch of holocaust/wwii books. I just finished A Lucky Child, which is a memoir about a ten year old cute kid who survived two death camps. Any recs from your QSIT research? did you read any books about the american media during WWII?
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )



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