c'est what (cest_what) wrote,
c'est what

Dear Yuletide Author


So firstly and most importantly: I'm going to have doubtful internet on Christmas Day, and none at all for the week after that, so chances are better than even that I won't get onto Yuletide until the new year. If you don't get a comment at first, it doesn't mean I didn't love your fic ♥ I just haven't got a chance to read it yet.

Secondly: I'm super-excited for all of the fandoms and characters I've requested, and I really hope there's something you're excited to write. If you have an idea that you want to write, and it fits none of my notes in any way, please feel free to go for it! I'd rather a good story to something that feels forced to you.

But if you're here, probably you're at least looking for some idea of what I'm into? So here goes.

As you can probably tell from my requests, I'm ridiculously into sibling dynamics at the moment. (Even for Demon's Lexicon, which is the only one I've requested a non-sibling relationship for, I would be absolutely thrilled if you made use of the phenomenal sibling relationships in the book.) Particularly in the period where they're still living at home, but also beyond that, the way things change but the bond and all the complicated love and jealousy and loyalty remain. I love the private worlds that siblings can create, the shared understanding and games and half-made-up languages and temporary alliances that shift and change, and the insults that can also function as pet names.

Other things that I love: I'm really into AUs! I love canon stories too, but if you want an excuse to write ridiculous fusions or the one where they're space cowboys or something, I'm your girl. (I mean, maybe not for Demon's Lexicon? I would be up for a plot-based AU, different decisions made etc, but maybe not so much of the one where they're all at a training academy for ninja spies, etc.) (Although having said that, that actually sounds a tiny bit awesome, so, uh. Follow your heart, I guess.)

I love amnesia or anything to do with wonky or false memories or memories that don't match up to other people's for whatever reason, and I love anything that messes around with POVs and characters whose perceptions of reality are different to each other. I love telepathy and psychic bonds when they're not romanticised, and I love ghosts when they're not horrific, and I love werewolves and water and clever magic and twisty revelations and fic about children that feels true to the child-protagonist's own worldview (but I'm not much for fic about babies). I love hopeful endings and endings that are a bit open but forward-looking. I love significant touches, all the things that aren't a standard mouth-to-mouth kiss that can stand out more because of it. I love things that are a bit wonky and off-kilter but charming. I love all the things on this rec list, pretty much.

I don't love: the big one is character bashing, especially of female characters; that can kill off my enjoyment of a story quicker than anything. I don't mean that, e.g., you have to write Regan and Goneril as nice people, because clearly they're not (at least during the play; you can do all sorts of things with backstory, of course), but I want to see all the characters written as human, with human motivations and vulnerabilities and human love. In particular, I don't like to see characters given new negative qualities that aren't in their canon, or something that deliberately adopts the most negative interpretations of their actions because the author dislikes them for some reason. (If you really dislike a character, I'd far prefer you found an unobtrusive way to exclude them from the story.) I'm also not your best audience for harsh gritty realism, and I'm not fond of totally tragic endings. I don't like noncon (although a certain degree of dubcon, in a pairing where the power dynamic is a shifting and fairly equal thing, e.g. Edgar and Edmund if you wanted to go in that direction, is okay).

OK, so re-posting my requests so everything is in one place for you:

Mitford Family RPF - Deborah Mitford

I nominated Deborah because she is (sometimes) my favourite, but I would be happy with any combination of any of the six Mitford sisters! Feel free to throw in Evelyn Waugh or anybody else you like, too. (Although possibly not Hitler.)

I would love any kind of canon wartime or Bright Young Things era or childhood stories or other moments of sibling dynamics, but I would also love any ridiculous AU you felt like writing - the Mitfords in space! The Mitfords as werewolves! Etc! - or some kind of Narnia or Hogwarts AU.

If you wanted extra notes on why I love them/what I love about them, here is my starry-eyed review of their letters.

Yeah, so we both know you didn't come here for the Mitfords. When signups closed, there was one request and one offer, and both of them were me. But hey, maybe you just happen to know all about them! Maybe you don't but you're intrigued, and you'd like to read that book I linked to! (You should read that book, it's excellent.) And then write all about the time Jessica found a lampost in a wardrobe or something! That would be pretty cool, is what I'm getting at. (And just in case it helps: here is a fic in which they are at Hogwarts. See how great they are?)

The Ogre Downstairs - Malcolm McIntyre

I love all of the characters in this book, but Malcolm is unashamedly my favourite. I would love something that dealt with family dynamics, ideally. Malcolm and Caspar's relationship is especially great, but more than slash (although I won't object to slash if you want to write it), I'd love something that deals with that created-sibling relationship, which has emotional stakes just as vital as any romantic relationship, and is just as full of pitfalls.

I'd also be really interested to see something about Malcolm & Douglas pre-canon, if you preferred that to bringing in Caspar and Johnny and Gwinny.

Of if you liked, I'm always fond of a pan-DWJ 'verse crossover with any of Diana Wyne Jones' other books. (Except Dalemark Quartet, which I'm not a fan of.)

Basically anything for this one is almost guaranteed to please me; I'm ridiculously easy for Ogre Downstairs fic, in part because it is so very scarce.

King Lear - Edgar and Edmund

I nominated Edgar & Edmund because I thought that would give me the best chance of a match, but I would actually be equally happy with a story about Cordelia, Regan and Goneril. What I really, really want is something that explores sibling dynamics, especially in the era before the play starts - the characters as children and beyond. So I'd love Edgar & Edmund's childhood or youth (can be Edgar/Edmund slash or brotherly gen, I would be equally happy with either), or Cordelia's relationship with Goneril and Regan before the stakes got so murderously high. Ideally something that doesn't paint anybody as entirely black, or entirely without love; sibling love can be the most heartbreakingly/hilariously complicated thing.

Something with touches of lightheartedness would be good, I'm not a fan of super-dark child abuse fic.

I think the only thing I'd add to this is: I know that Edmund is a lot of people's favourite, and Edgar tends to be cast as the dull, upright foil to him? But I would also love to see some hint of how Edgar could be both that upright straightforward dutiful boy, and then manage to be Poor Tom; that's a complicated personality, is the thing.

Demon's Lexicon - Jamie and Seb

What I would really love is either Jamie's or (better) Seb's POV on what happens in the last book, and going forward. I want their lunatic pact to be evil boyfriends and the way Seb sees through Jamie on the boat and his arc of not-quite-redemption. The way Seb is the only character who is *actually weak*, compared to Jamie and Alan who pretend to be harmless and Mae and Sin whose strength lies in walking taller than they are - and how Seb doesn't really find his strength but finds a way to work with that, by transferring his loyalty to Jamie. So being weak with the magicians was turning him into a bad person, but being weak with Jamie he will be okay, because Jamie, even when he's pretending to be evil, is fundamentally good.

Er, all of that is for you to take on board or not, completely optional, my subjective impressions only *g*

And in fact, if you checked "Any" characters and didn't, in fact, want to write the epic story (epic-ness not required, of course! Tiny ficlets that capture a particular moment can be the best thing ever) of Jamie and Seb's wonky love after all, I would also love to see something about Mae and Nick coming together - which was something that got shortchanged by neither of them having the narrative at the end of their story - or about Sin and Alan going into the future, and all the readjustments and family stuff and the devil's bargain the Market made, how all that's going to play out for them.

And even though this is the one request where I haven't asked for a sibling story, I adore all the sibling pairs/trios in this series to pieces, as well as the friendships (esp. Jamie and Nick), and anything you wanted to put in about any of them would be loved and appreciated.


So, okay, if you got through all that, you're already awesome :)
Tags: the mess gets worse all by itself, yuletide

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