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Yuletide 2010 Revelations

For Yuletide, I received a sweet story based on Noel Streatfield's family story Apple Bough, in which the author, melandra, followed eldest daughter Myra Forum's later life after she returns to the family home she's missed so much. It's full of enjoyable details of the other Forum siblings' lives and includes a lovely cameo from another Streatfield favorite.

Read "A Sister's Duty"

I wrote two treats in addition to my main assignment.

I was assigned to write a story on Rosemary Sutcliff's classic YA historical novel of Roman Britain, The Eagle of the Ninth. The recipient, be_themoon, was specifically interested in the building of the farm for which the protagonist, Marcus, is awarded land at the end of the novel. She also mentioned that Marcus, his friend (and former slave) Esca, and Marcus' wife-to-be Cottia are an OT3 for her, so I made sure to leave that issue open, although I did not address it directly. I chose to write four vignettes, each with a different viewpoint, which is a technique I had used once before. In this case, because of Sutcliff's strong sense of place and time, I ended up linking the four sections to the seasons of the year. I have now added some notes to the story on AO3, giving the background sources and the identities of my wonderful beta readers. People who enjoyed the story should also note that this novel has just been filmed and will be released just a little later this year: official film website.

ETA: smillaraaq makes a good point about the upcoming movie in her remarks below.

Read "Aedificāre"

I also wrote a vignette for edonohana based on Anne McCaffrey's Dragonriders of Pern. She had mentioned something I had noticed myself, which is that Mirrim's character, which starts out so interestingly and well in the series, basically goes down the tubes and becomes one-dimensionally nasty and shrill, in contrast to her good friend Menolly, who remains a fully realized and sympathetic character to the end. Because this was to be something short, I did not attempt to write a full re-creation of Mirrim's later character, but instead wrote a scene that had her interacting with Menolly as two close friends might, with warmth and joy. This scene was actually not my original thought for this story, but I got a little feeling of apprehension when I started writing and went to check things that edonohana had written herself for these two. Sure enough, my intended scenario was too close to her story The Marvels We Have Seen. The idea that I ended up writing came to me pretty much as of itself right after that - thank goodness!

Read "In Harmony"

Finally, I wrote a vignette for springgreen based on the manga series xxxHoLic. This is an odd choice in that it was not actually selected as a Yuletide fandom this year. I wanted to write a treat for springgreen for various RL reasons, and I did not know any of the fandoms she had requested. A mutual friend pointed out that springgreen and I both loved xxxHoLic and suggested that I write one in that fandom. I was not sure that I would be able to put it up as a treat, but I took a shot at it anyway, and it worked (otherwise, I would have just posted it to my account as a gift - AO3 allows that). I knew I wanted to do something with food, which is easy to bring up in xxxHoLic, and when I discovered an old journal post in which springgreen mentioned that she liked the character of Kohane, the young medium who is freed by the main characters of the series from her sad, abused life, I knew I had my central interaction. Finally, I wanted it to be a bit elegiac, and the developments in the most recent volumes of xxxHoLic available in English made that easy.

Read "Living Memory "


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 2nd, 2011 12:00 am (UTC)
*bounces gleefully*
Jan. 2nd, 2011 01:16 am (UTC)


Jan. 2nd, 2011 01:04 am (UTC)
Do I have to be caught up on Xxxholic to read your story? I'm a couple volumes behind on the English releases.

I would still read your fire lizard mating flight story, should you ever choose to write it. ;)
Jan. 2nd, 2011 01:15 am (UTC)

The last two volumes had some major revelations about Yuuko, and what Watanuki chooses to do with himself as a result, so I don't feel 100% comfortable about that. But I have this awful feeling that I may have blown those issues to springgreen as well, on the basis of what she said about the story ... she's usually caught up ahead of where I am because she will get Chinese translations of things before the English ones come out. But it looks like in this case, maybe not!

You'll have to decide for yourself, but you are so knowledgeable about manga symbolism that you may have figured out much of the canon reveal anyway.

Jan. 2nd, 2011 01:19 am (UTC)

(Re: mating flight ... it didn't actually go in that direction, but it was a vignette about them getting away to a sandy beach and having a heart-to-heart about people's expectations, etc. I think what I wrote was probably more fun in the end.)

Jan. 2nd, 2011 01:37 am (UTC)
One further note, on The Eagle of the Ninth and its upcoming film adaptation -- for those who haven't yet read the book, judging by the trailers and some director/cast interviews I've seen, the film may be deviating from the book canon in a few large ways. Hardly unusual in the book-to-movie adaptation process, of course, and I for one am reserving judgement for now as to whether those changes make sense when the story is put into a new medium; but if you liked the relationships between the characters here in opalmatrix's fic and want more in that sort of vein, going back to the original book instead of waiting for the film is likely to be your best bet.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )


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