AngiePen (angiepen) wrote,
AngiePen
angiepen

2007 Fiction Round-Up

Well, I did this last year so I figured I might as well do it again -- sort of a short director's commentary to some of the stories, along with toting up all the numbers. Lots more to add up this year, which is very cool.

JANUARY

When Gift Tags Get Lost -- 332 words; Actorslash. This was a sequel to When Stealth Fails, and somewhere in there I decided to call the series "When the Pieces Fit." This little bit of gigglery struck me like five minutes after I e-mailed "Stealth" to the slashababy mods, otherwise it probably would've been an epilogue tacked onto that one. I'm kind of glad it wasn't though; having it be separate planted the seed in my head about more separate stories, so that was good.

Incompetence -- 753 words; Harry Potter. This one would've been longer by about a hundred words or so but I wrote it for oxoniensis's Porn Battle and one of the rules was that stories had to fit into one (1) LJ comment post. [headdesk] I really and truly hate having an upper limit on my wordcount. Really. But it worked out anyway so I guess it wasn't too bad. [wry smile] This was my first ever completed-and-posted Harry Potter story. It's a tiny bit off the beaten path [cough] so it didn't get all that many comments, but I liked it and a bunch of people laughed so that's cool. :)

Jacking Harry -- 2634 words; Actorslash. I wrote this one for a request at the_challenger and it was fun. I'd never written Sean as a bad guy before, nor had I ever written a story where the "pairing" was this iffy. Several people in comments said they'd been kept wondering up until the end, so that made me happy. It was fun, balancing the snarking and physical attraction with the fact that Sean was, like, kidnapping Harry at gunpoint.

A Hidden Magic 14 -- 1774 words; Actorslash. I can't express how happy and relieved I was to finally be able to start posting this again. It'd been over a year since I'd posted Chunk 13 and I'd felt like shit whenever I thought about it, which of course is just a dandy state of mind to be in when you want to start writing something again. [headdesk] But finally it all came together and I finished the darned thing, although I had some reservations about readers' reactions to the last part. [cough] But it was done and I could start posting, yay!

A Hidden Magic 15 -- 1831 words; Actorslash.

JANUARY TOTAL: 7324 words


FEBRUARY

A Hidden Magic 16 -- 1663 words; Actorslash.

A Hidden Magic 17 -- 2164 words; Actorslash.

A Hidden Magic 18 -- 1682 words; Actorslash.

A Hidden Magic 19 -- 2185 words; Actorslash. And here it wrapped. The first story, anyway. I sort of had to promise sequels because I never did manage to actually get Alan and Craig into bed before the end here [hides] but this is where the main plotline ended and so there you go. I've never been one to stick sex on with duct tape just to have sex, so.... I've been thinking about an Alan/Craig sequel, and at this point, I think what I'm going to do is rewrite the whole thing. [hides farther away] Seriously, though, the problem here is pacing. I had two main plotlines -- the internal plotline, having to do with the Alan/Craig romance and getting them together, and the external plotline having to do with the Elven invasion scheme and Craig's kidnapping, and the main problem with the story is that the external plot wrapped significantly before the internal plot was finished. That's a craftsmanship issue, and it'd be better to just fix it than to try tacking something on to the end.

Shade -- 758 words; Actorslash. This was a sequel to Heat, which I wrote and posted back in '04. "Heat" was a very stylized story and although I'd always wanted to write a sequel to it, I couldn't just bang out something in my more usual cinematic style because they wouldn't fit together. It took almost three years to write "Shade" and I'm pleased with how it turned out. I think I needed to think and practice and become a better writer before I could do justice to "Heat" with a sequel and I'm glad I waited.

Just a Nudge -- 4254 words; Actorslash. Another story that'd been hanging out for a while. Back in '05, I did this memething to get story prompts. I'd only ever promised the participants a one-line story and everyone got quite a bit more than that :) but most of the "stories" I posted in response to the meme responses pretty clearly weren't complete. I finished two or three within a few months but I still have a bunch hanging out on my hard drive. I'd been working on this one on and off in the year and a half or so since the meme and finally finished. When I posted it, it'd been so long that the person who'd made the request didn't even remember, LOL! She liked it anyway, though, so that was cool. [snicker]

Sexual Dimorphism in Cross-Universal Organisms -- 821 words; Actorslash. Somewhere in '06 I signed up for the wtf27 table-prompt fest or challenge or whatever they call those things. I'd never felt any urge to sign up for a table-prompt thing before; they just don't inspire me. This one was different, though -- all the prompts are a kind of crack!fic and that just got my drugged-out bunnies hopping. :) I had an image of the punch line of this story (sort of a weird combination of Viggorli and "The Dark Crystal") in my head pretty much since the day I signed up, but it took a while to figure out how to actually turn it into a story. A Warner Bros. cartoon reference ended up sneaking in there too. [cough]

So Hot! -- 1255 words; Fantastic Four (movieverse). OK, this one was totally not my fault. I was talking to Razzle in comments about the upcoming Fantastic Four sequel and this image just popped into my head and I had to turn it into a story. It's a weird little fandom with only one (dead) community on LJ and it was OMG Het!!!! [crosses and garlic] (kinda-sorta het, anyway -- actually it's a wanking story but he's fantasizing about some chick so close enough) and therefore the feedback was incredibly sparse but dammit it was funny! Anyway, a few people liked it, so that's cool. :D

When Guys Talk -- 715 words; Actorslash. Third story in the "When the Pieces Fit" verse. The original story'd been written as a Slashababy gift for telesilla and one of her requests was that the guys act like guys, so I've sort of had that in the back of my mind whenever I'm writing something for this series. And what's more guy-like than being completely unable to talk about anything? [snicker] I also happen to have rather strong opinions about POV control in fiction and I've said often enough that a writer should head-hop in the middle of a scene only when it's absolutely necessary to achieve some specific goal or purpose. I've used as an example a short story called "The Waltz" where the whole story is wall-to-wall head-hopping and it works beautifully -- it's about a man and a woman who are barely acquainted dancing and holding this perfectly civil conversation, all polite nothings, while mentally each one is shredding the other, the music, the party, the hostess, etc. It's really funny if you're into that sort of thing. Thinking about that got me thinking about the boys here and the difference between what they'd say and what they meant. This story was the result.

Unfinished Business -- 3955 words; Actorslash. This is the first sequel to "A Hidden Magic." I decided, rather uncreatively I realize, to call the whole thing "The Magic Series." So shoot me. :P The major sequels will all have "Magic" in the title, but this is just a short so I figured I didn't have to. Besides, I tried to think of a "Magic" title and ended up really reaching so that wouldn't have worked very well anyway. [humming] Anyway, Craig and Alan aren't the only ones with threads left dangling -- Eric was in the middle of a task when the gang took off to rescue Craig. Orlando's determined he's going to finish. It was fun fleshing out the relationship between these two -- this Orlando is two hundred and change and it really gives their dynamic a sideways twist away from the usual. Eric's not the most respectful apprentice in the history of apprentices, but Orlando knows how and when to rein him in and Eric knows when to be serious. I think I'll probably end up writing more about these two.

FEBRUARY TOTAL: 19,452 words


MARCH

No Good Deed -- 2106 words; Harry Potter. This was my second posted Harry Potter story, written for the Animagi round of the thematic_hp challenge community. The prompt I chose was for something weird, nasty and unexpected to happen when a werewolf attempted the animagus transformation. Being me, I immediately got this giggly-humorous image in my head and I had to write a funny story. Which possibly wasn't quite what the original requestor had in mind, but oh well. :D

[I spent a large chunk of March in Florence and posted about it a lot so I didn't do much fiction writing this month.]

MARCH TOTAL: 2106 words


APRIL

Deathbed -- 6248 words; Original. I actually wrote this one a number of years ago but I posted it on April 23rd for International Pixel-Stained Technopeasant Day. IPSTD was created in response to a rant by an officer of SFWA and it was great fun. I even got a T-shirt. :) I wrote this back when I was doing original fiction and sending it out, before the turn of the century. [cough] It collected some rejection slips, including one that just made my day for saying that it was rejected for being too much like a story by Octavia Butler. Woot! :D [Hey, when you're unpublished you take whatever compliments you can scrounge!] At the time I'd never read any of her work but I'd certainly heard of her and knew enough to take it as a compliment. I've always liked this one because absolutely everyone in it is an asshat in one way or another. There's really no one to root for -- you just sort of kick back with your popcorn and watch the train wreck. It's a modern horror/fantasy sort of thing about a bunch of people trying to grab prizes they don't deserve using whatever means come to hand. Everyone gets theirs by the end.

Distraction -- 2432 words; Actorslash. This one came about when I was looking for a plot bunny. I went browsing through entries in the_challenger and ran across a set of quotes Raven had posted. One of them struck me as funny so I built a story that'd let me use it. The original concept started out rather different, and a few people in comments who thought something else was going on were right, at least up to a point. :) It was a bit off-the-shelf, though, and when it hit me that I could make it something else without contradicting anything I'd written so far, I went for it. I like the ending I used much better than the original idea.

APRIL TOTAL: 8680 words


MAY

When All You Can Do Is Watch -- 3660 words; Actorslash. Fourth story in the "When the Pieces Fit" series. This is where things start to get serious. Before, it was really a romp and Viggo was just sort of daytripping to see how he reacted to the whole BDSM thing. He really likes it, though, and wants to get real. The tone changes quite a bit here, compared with the first three stories, but readers seemed to still enjoy it so that's cool. :)

Family Obligations 1 -- 2028 words; Actorslash. Okay, you know how back when I had that hugely long hiatus in Hidden Magic and I swore I'd never again post anything as I wrote it? That I'd always finish first and then start posting...? Well, that lasted about three months. [facepalm] It's all amygirl's fault, though, 'cause she posted this really interesting request to the_challenger but she asked that the story be posted, or started if it was a multi-part, by her birthday. And there was no way I could write the whole thing for her birthday but I really wanted to have something up by then, so.... [heavy, theatrical sigh] It did work, though; I actually finished the thing and got a lot of great comments on it. This is one of my own favorite stories so far and I'm glad she tossed me the bunny. :D

Family Obligations 2 -- 2455 words; Actorslash.

Family Obligations 3 -- 2716 words; Actorslash.

Family Obligations 4 -- 2667 words; Actorslash.

Learning to Love Yourself -- 3149 words; Actorslash Original. Here I took a break from FO to write this short story for svmadelyn's Kink/Cliche Challenge. This was a bit frustrating at the beginning because it's science fiction and all my SF worldbuilding instincts kicked in. I ended up completely restarting three (or was it four?) times because there was just Too Much Info at the beginning of the story -- tech and history and economics and social details and it was all necessary but not all of it belonged in the story, if that makes sense. IOW, I needed to know it, but you didn't necessarily need to know it all. :P I saved everything, so if I ever write any more stories in this universe, I have a lot of the higher level worldbuilding info done. I had to get this particular story hacked down to size, though, and I finally managed it, yay. This is also the first story I got published, with Torquere Press, after filing the serial numbers off, so that was a major milestone in September. :D

Family Obligations 5 -- 2663 words; Actorslash.

Merciful Gods -- 4231 words; Actorslash. I'd actually finished this one earlier, but figured I'd save it until FO was finished. But at this point I'd started slowing down with FO so I figured I'd post this just to give people who were used to having something to read, well, something to read. [duck] This is another story from the memething back in '05. It started out just sort of funny, but right before I picked it up again and actually finished, there'd been a lot of meta going around the larger fandom about sex-change stories where a guy turned into a woman and instantly felt this overwhelming urge to wear spike heels and miniskirts and make-up and get his nails done, and how horribly unrealistic that was. I mean, I was born a woman and I don't do any of those things :P so the idea that someone who's been a guy for twenty or thirty or forty years, and isn't transgendered but just got magicked or whatever into a female body, would suddenly feel all these "girly" cravings is pretty darned silly. So I wanted to show a guy who turned into a girl and didn't just automatically reach for the nail polish. Both characters turned out to be pretty unlikeable, and that spawned some really great discussion in comments -- check it out.

Family Obligations 6 -- 2572 words; Actorslash.

Family Obligations 7 -- 2610 words; Actorslash.

MAY TOTAL: 28,751 words


JUNE

Family Obligations 8 -- 2980 words; Actorslash.

Family Obligations 9 -- 2778 words; Actorslash.

Family Obligations 10 -- 3158 words; Actorslash.

Family Obligations 11 -- 2569 words; Actorslash.

Family Obligations 12 -- 2605 words; Actorslash.

Family Obligations 13 -- 2831 words; Actorslash.

JUNE TOTAL: 16,921 words.


JULY

Family Obligations 14 -- 2882 words; Actorslash.

Family Obligations 15 -- 2663 words; Actorslash. Done! Wow, the last few chapters here were pretty stressful to write. I'd set up a lot of subplots and planted a bunch of red herrings and there were a bunch of characters all doing their thing, and the last few chapters were where I had to go gather them all up and weave them together neatly into a nice wrap. Posting slowed down toward the end, but looking back, I think it was worth it. I definitely liked this story, and a lot of other folks did too. :D

Hospitality -- 625 words; Actorslash. Another entry in one of oxoniensis's Porn Battles, this one Firefly RPS with Nathan Fillion and Adam Baldwin, short and porny and with some funny. This is another one that I liked a lot, but hardly anyone read. There's an RPS community for Firefly, but apparently most of the Firefly fans just aren't that into RPS, so.... Ah, well.

JULY TOTAL: 6170 words


AUGUST

Pick-Up Lines -- 789 words; Actorslash. I wrote this one while at the Vegas Slashy Retreat. I'm totally not into country music [cough] but lauralynn22 mentioned this song and the title struck me as just so Viggo, I had to write this. :D I banged it out right there in the kitchen and posted it next time we hit the lobby where there was internet. I hadn't written Viggo/Orlando in a while, despite that having been how I entered the fandom, so doing this was a lot of fun.

AUGUST TOTAL: 789 words


SEPTEMBER

No new words posted, but "Learning to Love Yourself" was published, yay!


OCTOBER

Crawling Toward the Light -- 3333 words; Actorslash. This was written for the lotrips_remix fest. I had a really hard time with it, I'll admit. I was assigned Veronica Angelique, and her stories are so complete, I had a really tough time figuring out how to redo one of them. I mean, sure, you can always put them into a different setting, or turn it into SF or put it back in ancient Greece or something, but I wanted to say something new and significant, rather than just rewriting a story to be different. An actual remodel, rather than just painting the walls a different color. And what I actually ended up with was more a "Meanwhile, across town..." sort of add-on, rather than an actual rewrite of the story she wrote. I think it works, though, and she seemed to like it so that's cool. :)


Chasing Fear -- 4386 words; Original. This was the first fresh-original story I wrote for Torquere, for their Halloween Sip Blitz. (They have a sort of drinks theme on their site, and a "sip" is a short story.) This story is set in the same universe as Hidden Magic, but it's down in the LA area, whereas HM is set up in San Jose. It worked as a stand-alone because while it's in the same universe, nothing else is the same -- no overlapping characters, no Sentinels or elves or anything. Martín is a "Greenman," which is a name I made up for someone who magically controls plants. He's just a dude with a talent, though, and he doesn't use it to Fight Evil like the boys up in San Jose do. This is a much smaller story, in that it only involves Martín and his lover Emilio, who's the POV character. I like it, though, and it got a nice review. :)

OCTOBER TOTAL: 7719 words


NOVEMBER

Swords and Shadows -- 33,411 words; Original. This is my NaNoWriMo story, and rather than list all seventeen chunks of it separately, the link goes to the "November" calendar page of my NaNo journal. All but one post there are story posts, labelled "Chunk1," "Chunk 2," etc. It's not finished, and I didn't make the 50K NaNo goal :( but I'm still working on it. As always, I learned some useful things about myself and my writing habits while doing this, so it was definitely worth it, win or no. And I've got a nice chunk of a story that has a lot of potential, so that's cool.

NOVEMBER TOTAL: 33,411 words


DECEMBER

The Joy of Exchanging Gifts -- 3623 words; Original. This is a Christmas story, part of Torquere's holiday sips thing, where they posted a bunch of holiday-specific short stories in a few batches during December. It was sort of funny when we were talking about it, trying to figure out how to describe the group of stories. They're not just Christmas because we wanted it open for any December holiday, and it turned out there are a couple based on other holidays. So someone suggested a "winter" theme, but a few of our writers are from Australia and it's summer there, so.... LOL! Anyway, we ended up with just "holiday," with the stories divided into "naughty" or "nice." Which is pretty Christmas-specific, but whatever. [duck] Mine went in the "nice" category, because the protag was trying to do something nice for a friend, even if it didn't go quite the way he'd originally planned. [snicker]

Catching Courage -- 1953 words; Original. This was my contribution to Torquere's Advent Calendar promotion-thingy. They got thirty writers and an artist to contribute little freebies to be posted to the site over the course of December, one per day. It could be anything, but the most common was a very short story, or a recipe, or a story and a recipe, which is what I did. This is a sequel to "Chasing Fear," my Halloween story, and it comes with a recipe for trés leches cake.

The Spice of Life -- 5238 words; Actorslash. I wrote this one for v_angelique, for the 2007 slashababy fest. It turned out a bit... weird [cough] and I'll admit I had some second thoughts when I was around three-quarters of the way through. It started out as just a "Hey, look, the cookies came alive and they're having an orgy!" sort of funny, but then Harry made his little slasher and it got a little darker and just... stranger in places than I'd originally intended. I just went with it, though, and I'm glad I did. :)

DECEMBER TOTAL: 10,814 words

2007 TOTAL: 142,137


Last year I wrote a total of 92,598 words, and I wondered out loud whether I could double it for this year. Turns out I couldn't [duck] but I bettered it by quite a lot, so that's cool. I'm still doing to try to do better this coming year, but I don't think I'll go for twice as much as this year. Maybe I'll try again for twice as much as last year? :) Around 185K or so is probably doable, without a ridiculous amount of pushing. [ponder]

One thing that's sort of startling is that I posted only five stories last year, and that's counting NaNo. O_O Wow. Looking at this year, I was a lot more productive in terms of getting things done and posted, a lot more than twice as many stories. Five times as many, in fact -- counting Hidden Magic and Family Obligations as single stories, I still finished and posted twenty-five stories this year, woot!

Angie
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