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Yuletide Reveals 2012

This year, I wrote my assignment and two treats. (Will be crossposted to my main journals on LJ and DW.)

A Way through the Woods was written as my assignment, for C.J. Cherryh's 1992 fantasy novel The Goblin Mirror. was mostly interested in Tamas, one of the three brothers who are at the center of the novel's action because of their impressive grandmother. She also declared herself willing to be convinced of the awesomeness of Ela, the young witch's apprentice who is the only living female character aside from the brothers' mother, and suggested that a visit to Tamas' brother Yuri back in their homeland of Maggiar might be of interest. I did a bit of background reading about Russian folklore for this, primarily the book Russian Magic: Living Folk Traditions of an Enchanted Landscape. This suggested to me that the story should be about the journey itself. I could not make things happen from Ela's point of view and ended up writing from Tamas'. A conversation with my husband crystallized one of my questions about the book, which was the actual physical extent of the magical events described in the book, and that's actually at the core of the story. Finally, said that she'd enjoy seeing the goblins again, and this gave me a chance to wrote a scene with my favorite character, Azdra'ik the trickster, prince of the goblins.

Freely Given was written for the 1972 pop hit "Brandy" by the band Looking Glass. This is a very old-style romantic story-song about a bar waitress who love a sailor who loves the sea. The request from came through on the Pinch Hit mailing list; she said "I love the way she pines for him but doesn't let it get in the way of the facts of her daily life," and the story - a shamelessly romantic Christmas Eve slice of life - popped into my head more or less fully grown. I wasn't quick enough to grab the pinch hit, but the story wanted to be written, particularly after I read 's Dear Author and realized that what I'd pictured would suit her perfectly. Two other people also write for the song, but the other two are historical AUs (which had also suggested). Finally, I included a short playlist (Youtube links), because the story reminded me of several other songs too. Finally, I have to say that my reaction to writing Yuletide stories about songs has always been "Bzuh?" - so hey, the worm has turned, with me bunnied by a song!

Gemma on the Air was written for Noel Streatfeild's little known four-volume "Gemma" series (Gemma, Gemma and Sisters , Gemma Alone, and Good-bye Gemma, published 1968-1969), which is about a former child star who has to go live with her "ordinary" cousins (who are actually a very musical, creative family). specifically wanted more about Gemma's future and also mentioned that she would love to hear about the future of cousin Ann, who is roughly the same age as Gemma. Then she added: "a story where [Ann] discovers and deals with being a lesbian" and "Maybe them ... reminiscing to a magazine or tv show." A scenario popped into my head about Ann and Gemma both being on a classic late-night U.S. talk show modeled on Johnny Carson's Tonight Show or maybe Dick Cavett's show, both of which were mainstays of U.S. television when I was the age that Gemma and Ann are in the series. I also ended up doing a very quick bit of research on queer rights in the U.K., which helped cement the era of the story as the late 1990s, making Ann and Gemma in their late 30s. Finally, this is a tiny bit of a crossover: Gemma's offstage love interest is one of the boys from Streatfeild's even more obscure The Children on the Top Floor (1964).


The "Gemma" story has thus far been the most popular of the three. In general, this is a year when I felt that I was really in the deep end of the Yuletide obscure fandoms: I don't expect big readerships for any of these.

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