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Dear Yuletide Writer ... !

Dear Yuletide Writer:

I'm so sorry that this is so late!

First of all, I'd like to say, please, have fun writing the story! Results are usually better when someone is doing something that s/he likes, after all. The only thing that I will demand is a happy ending: after all, this is the dark end of the year, when we could all use a little joy!

Just in case you were wondering about what I might like, here are some ideas:

I do like ... I don't like ...
  • Friendships - although I am a romantic sort of person, not every relationship has to be romantic (I do like the trope of friends becoming lovers, however)
  • Strong characterization
  • Wry humor in the course of a more serious story
  • Positive emotional payoffs that are well-earned
  • Passions that are strong without being mushy/fluffy
  • Moments of realization - satori
  • Characters acting OOC, especially if the purpose is to force them into a relationship (doubly bad if that relationship is romantic or sexual)
  • Romantic/sexual relationships between partners of very uneven levels of power (adult/child, master/servant) - only a couple of writers have ever managed this without squicking me out
  • Mpreg
  • Fluffy girlish stuff

I'm quite content with both straight and gay relationships. In the case of regular fiction (as opposed to manga), I do tend to ship the canon relationships, unless it's a character who has had no relationships shown in the story. I'm not comfortable with sexual relationships shown in children under the age of, say, 14 or so, and not even among older teens except with their age peers.

(Also feel free to check out my interests on my profile.)

As to the requests:

Barry Hughart - Master Li series - Of course if we're having Master Li, there's got to be a scam going on! And if Number Ten Ox is involved, the end has to mean something good for someone who deserves it. Chinese mythology, ancient relics, voices from beyond the grave, criminals of all sorts, weird scholars, crazy artists - it's all good. This is not a type of story where I'd expect romance ... but having Master Li encounter a witty older woman who can spar with him verbally might be hilarious. A Buddhist nun who's a former court lady? A scholarly widow who used to be a courtsan? A she-demon turned sentimental in her old age? The possibilities are many ... .

Gouhou Drug aka Legal Drug - My interest in this series is the older couple, Kakei and Saiga. I find them immensely sexy. This could be mature-rated slashy or just very intimate emotionally. Maybe a look at how they first met? Or perhaps Kakei is actually getting anxious about things while the boys are on a long mission (the unfinished arc where they're at the boarding school, for example), and Saiga has to distract him so he can relax and get some sleep? It's important that they stay in character, whatever you choose to do. Kakei is steely underneath his delicate looks.

R. A. MacAvoy - Black Dragon series - My focus here is purely on Martha and Mayland. Inclusion of any other canon character is very much optional. Characterization is key: she should remain slightly spacey, he should remain a little starchy. A mystery of some sort should be the order of the day, I think. And it would be nice to have her rescue him. An encounter with a myth or with folklore - either Chinese or something particular to whatever the setting is - filtered through modern life would be wonderful. A music theme always works well with Martha - I like modern folk-influenced groups like the Oyster Band. And it's your choice whether you want to keep them in the original era of the story, or move them forward to the present day.

Samurai Deeper Kyo (anime or manga) - I know it says "anime or manga" - but I'm all about the manga here - it was my first manga - and I've read scanlations right through the end of the series. I love most of the main characters passionately, with the big exception of Tokito - no Tokito, please. Here are a few ideas for things I'd find interesting, if you haven't already thought of something: Muramasa's flight from the Mibu city with the child Kyo (and probably Anri along as a guard); young Yukimura attempting to settle down and become a proper samurai, with his brother Nobuyuki doubtful about his change of heart (bonus points for Sanada Ten involvement); early days for Sasuke the younger with Yukimura and the Ten, perhaps with Sasuke saving Yukimura from some peril; Hotaru's early days with the Four Emperors, and how young Akira reacts to the newcomer; interactions among Muramasa, Fubuki, Hishigi, and Shihoudou, back before things went really sour. Less gen/more adult/slash ideas (all of which would probably benefit from knowing the entire series through vol. 38): Akari's early days with the Four Emporers, and how she becomes aware of her feelings for Kyo; Hishigi and Fubuki, some crisis during which their relationship evolves to the strange, conflicted thing we see when Kyo and his party first enter the Mibu city (this probably won't be able to have a happy-happy ending); Kyo and Kyoushirou and Sakuya: some back story that would explain [spoilers!] why Kyoushirou was not freaked out to find Sakuya half-undressed with Kyo in the scene where she tries to get Kyo to kill her ... Kyoushirou is angry that Kyo seems to be threatening her with a sword, but is apparently not at all upset by her state of undress. Finally, for SDK, please see these writeups: her squee is my squee!

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