Lurky McLurklurk (ionlylurkhere) wrote,
Lurky McLurklurk

2009: Fic Year in Review

Snagged from astrogirl2; I would have done this at the end of 2009 rather the beginning of 2010, but then I decided to wait for the Yuletide reveal so I could include those.

The fics

(This includes me publicly copping to the majority but not all of the relatively few kink meme fics I wrote this year, which I don't normally do [it was mostly a mini-burst of activity in September, slightly too late for the official revival efforts]. I'm noting fandom, pairing if any, rating, and any particular thing it was written for)

Review of my Goals for 2009. Did I meet that goal? I didn't really have any goals, per se, other than to try not to flake out of things so much as I have done in the past, and I have done better this year on that score. Not at all perfectly (huge apologies to in_the_end and nonelvis in particular for my flaking out of bluesuit_fic, though I do still intend to finish what I started there, at least in the abstract), and I dropped out of thelittlebang and polybigbang relatively early in both cases, which I'm disappointed by because I wanted to write for them, but for various reasons in each case it wasn't going to happen.

My Favorite Stories of the Year: Oh, very hard to pick; I like all of them for different reasons. Probably Mixed Signals, because I'm pleased I at least slightly managed to do Compassion.

My Best Stories This Year: Clothes maketh the man. When I write kink fic my general aim (though I don't always succeed in it) tends to be to portray the characters' kinkiness as part of their overall relationship, rather than either separate from it or the structure around which the whole relationship is based (which is why I don't go in very much for fics about 24/7 lifestyle BDSM or what have you). Normally this ends up tending towards a somewhat lighthearted tone, people who are enjoying kink as something fun, so I was pleased with this one because (to my mind) it achieves the same sort of thing but on the angst end of things. Also Time Turned Inside Out, because I think it coheres well, and I quite like that it has both a strong central idea from which everything flows but also manages to hit all the disparate things mentioned in the prompt, which is probably a bit shallow but I don't care.

Stories most under-appreciated by the universe, in my opinion: Hmm. I think this question is orthogonal to the way I think about writing fic, which is very much in the mould of that old NME cliche of "I just do my thing and if anyone else likes it that's a bonus". Not that I don't love getting feedback, because I very much do, but I suppose I never really have particularly high expectations of getting feedback (particularly not when I'm writing in the more obscure corners of fandom, which is definitely something I seem to be doing more and more of -- there's a lot of Old and particularly Middle School Who there, and even within the New School stuff it's very much pairings with small followings (with the solitary exception of one anonymous Ten/Donna fic)). So I don't really have an answer to this.

In writing which it occurs to me that bloody hell, I've not written any Ten/Martha fic this year at all. Wow. There are all sorts of reasons for that, some better than others (and the biggest is that I've written nearly 60k of Martha, just in other pairings), but I feel quite sad about that.

Stories I Wrote That I Never Thought I'd Write: Probably the Charley/C'Rizz counts here, 'cos while I like the Eight audios they've never particularly grabbed me before as fic-inspiring. And I suppose the Yuletide fic counts, as I didn't offer Iron Man; I matched on a different fandom, but it was the prompt that grabbed me out of my recipients' choices. (And yes I do count myself very lucky to have been in that situation where I could do pick and choose like that.)

Most Fun Stories: I'm very fond of The First Casualty (though a lot of it's to do with my using an OC from the People to deconstruct the Diziet Sma model of SC agent in the Culture proper), but the winner in this category has to be the untitled kink meme fic, mainly because of the way I used it to work out my frustrations with the KotOR games. So basically, the ones I find fun are the ones I use to do obnoxious meta about obscure things that most people reading it won't get. Yay for my self-indulgence?

Sexiest Stories: Clothes maketh the man. I really must write the sequel to that, actually. Bizarrely, it's the sex I'm blanking on there -- I've written lots of scenes around it but I'm not quite sure how far certain of the characters would go with certain things.

Hardest Stories to Write: Meeting at Infinity. I'm still astonished I managed to finish the thing, let alone that it is even slightly coherent. But most of the others (see below for the big exception) had various elements of difficulty to them, from somewhere between pulling teeth and giving birth to a rhinoceros. I have definitely got a pattern with prompt-style ficathons, which is that I'll have an idea for one thing and make some headway with it before getting bogged down, then jump to another prompt when I feel dissatisfied (or sometimes when I feel that the original story is getting away from me such that I won't be able to finish it anywhere near in time). And then at least half the time I end up switching back to the first one (or to a third one, even). I could really easily and without having to look anything up describe you the unfinished fics for both of the dw_femslash stories (actually, one of the alternates is completely finished; I scratched it for other reasons), the femslash09 one and with a quick bit of digging through my files the henriettastreet ones too (I do remember being disappointed that I had failed at including Anji, when lots of my unused ideas did have her in them).

Easiest Stories to Write: Ten of the Sword/Sufficiently Advanced Technology. Hands down. It pretty much just spilled out of me once I'd finally got round to watching my shiny new Battlefield DVDs. Not an experience I have very often at the moment, but hopefully S5 will see me more in that sort of a mode? There's been precious little new canon this year, and what there has generally not stimulated fic ideas, even of the fix the appalling horrendousness variety.

Looking back, did you write more fic than you thought you would this year, less, or about what you'd predicted? This is quite an interesting one. Not so long ago, I added up my word counts for this year and last. I was fairly convinced that I'd have written more words this year, because of the huge 47k Big Bang fic, even though I was conscious that writing that had meant there were fewer fics overall. But it turns out to be almost exactly the same. So I think I'd have to say "less".

Did you take any writing risks this year? What did you learn from them? Big Bang was a huge risk, given that I'd never written anything much more than 5000 words at that point. I learned a lot about plotting from that (mainly from reflecting on the ways in which it's not so successful, to be honest, but I do think it is baseline-coherent, and there were a lot of external constraints [given what I had decided to do], only a few of which I fudged), and my ability to write lots in a short time under pressure (in_the_end, wishfulaces and peeeeeeet were all unbelievably never-can-be-repaid awesome for beta-ing huge chunks of stuff at ridiculously short notice). Also, I'd never done a remix before I signed up for who_remix, which was an interesting experience in both directions, though not one I feel terribly likely to repeat, to be honest.

Biggest Disappointment: That I haven't gotten over my last-minute-ness in any way, shape or form. Looking back through my journal to make sure I hadn't missed anything for the list up there, it was rather galling to discover that almost all of these went up on the beta filter pretty much within 24 hours of the deadline. It's also interesting to note that with the exception of the only one that was properly easy to write, they're all for a ficathon or a kink meme prompt or something. (I think a lot of my making-up-my-own-plot mojo went into Meeting at Infinity.)

Biggest Surprise: That I wrote as much as I did in fandoms other than Who, I think (even though it's not very much at all by multi-fandom-types' standards), especially revisiting Buffy, especially especially with writing a non-canon ship (I am a really boring canon shipper in Buffy, for some reason). Runner up in the surprise stakes: managing to go from idly looking at the prompts for the people who still hadn't officially had a story yet to having an idea to getting it finished in the space of a few hours on Christmas Eve despite having family round and such. That was quite nice because I did just suddenly get an idea and it flowed, and I hadn't had that experience much this year.

Do you have any goals for the New Year? As a matter of fact, I do. I am really properly going to try and be less last-minute, because if I am then I can hopefully have more time to improve fics than I currently do. More specifically, I have resolved to try and write a fic a month for whoniverse1000, though I still feel intimidated by that comm for some reason. I definitely want to do tardis_bigbang again (I'm currently leaning towards Izzy/Destrii because after finishing my reread of the Eight comics the other day I think I have a good couple of hooks for it); if I do, that's going to be a big target for my "being less last-minute" thing, particularly because the time I have particularly available is early on in the window. And there are two fics for the kink meme (one of them the Ten/River sequel) that I really must get sorted -- the one that isn't the Ten/River sequel has been kicking my arse for well over a year now and it's getting a little bit ridiculous. I think I need to stop thinking of it as a kink meme fic, really; the problem is that it's got shedloads of complicated stuff going on and I keep thinking "what I've got so far is going to fill five comments and it hasn't got anywhere near the porn yet", and things like that. I need to just let it be the length it is and that'll be that. On the other hand, I might make an effort (and whoniverse1000 might help here) to be more concise sometimes, I feel like I'm getting more long-winded in my old age. Part of it's to do with what I'm choosing to write (it strikes me that when writing for big pairings there are many assumptions shared between writer and audience that allow for things to be hinted at more and explained less, or maybe I've just become more pedantic and determined to show my working), but there's a definite different tone that shorter fics have that I'd like to recapture. It's something to do with pacing, I think.

Also, not quite to do with my own writing per se, but definitely fic-related, I'm going to try and be slightly less lazy at the kink meme, and run the EDA ficathon again on henriettastreet (I'm thinking a bit earlier this time round, late Feb signups with a Mayish due date, just because it fits my schedule better -- does anyone know if there are any other ficathons that that might clash with? Is tardis_gen running again, does anyone know?).

Anyway, er, Happy New Year everyone.
Tags: memery, writing fic

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