herongale: (hitagi- take my hand)
herongale ([personal profile] herongale) wrote2010-01-02 02:41 am
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Goodbye, 2009, hello New Year!!! Here is my Writing Retrospective to kick you off!!!

I've seen this meme kicking around a few places, but [livejournal.com profile] nekokoban and [livejournal.com profile] sink_or_swim really were the ones to inspire me to do it.

I have to say, the word count turned out to be a lot higher than I expected. Fickleness apparently pays off! This has been a year for just running around and chasing after whatever was interesting me at the moment, without any kind of greater plan. This is the most productive I've been in ages, but I make no promises as to my future output because every time I make promises I end up locking them up into refrigerators and putting chains around them and dumping them (the promises, I mean) down at the bottom of the ocean.

I am a fickle person, period. I must simply accept this, and keep moving!

1. Happiness is a Warm Gun, Megatron/Starscream, Transformers. Rated M for EVERYONE. 33,491 words.
2. The Unrenewed, Greed and Scar angst fic, Fullmetal Alchemist. rated T for EVERYONE. 3,766 words.
3. Chivalry, Gai/Ozai, Naruto and Avatar crossover fic, rated K+ for EVERYONE. 1,675 words.
4. Love What I Love, Ken/Daisuke. rated T for EVERYONE. 3,835 words.
5. Anonymous Kinkmeme Fic: 27,857 words.

I have also been revising several old Digimon fics.

1. Reflections. Chapters 8-14 are almost completely new and were written last year. Chapter word counts are:

8:Measure of the Man. 1,926
9: Switching Places. 2,074
10: Fever. 2,031
11. Passion and Charm. 1,688
12. The Forming Shrine. 5,482
13. Kaiser. 5,262
14. Not For You. 5,446

2. An Immortal Emperor in a Mundane Universe. I cannot possibly say what words are new and what are old, so I won't count any.

3. What The Sibyl Said, chapter one. As with Immortal Emperor, I cannot say what is new and what is merely fixed. So no word count here either.


1. In The Palace of The Snow Queen. Ryou/Chika, .hack//GU. incomplete. 665 words.
2. Skywarp's Advanced Degree (In Dumbass). Transformers, incomplete. 1,552 words.
3. The Residue of a Flare Ignited Upon a Boundry. Ed/Scar, Fullmetal Alchemist. 1,469 words.
4. Mary Sue fic, ?? fandom, secret gift! incomplete. 2,504 words.
5. A Raven and the Crow. Ed/Scar, incomplete. 1,105 words.
5. The Unfurling Tendrils of Some Unspeakable Emotion, original fic, COMPLETE. 2,237

Total: 104,065 words

And here is the survey!

Looking back, did you write more fic than you thought you would this year, less, or about what you'd predicted?:

More, definitely more! Motto, motto, motto, only one!! (yes, I am Ken Ichijouji when it comes to gloating, shut up)

What pairing/genre/fandom did you write that you would never have predicted in January?:

TRANSFORMERS ANYTHING. It's my oldest fandom, but jeez. It's also been my most private, my most closely held. Writing for it feels kind of uncomfortable but in a good way.

What's your favourite story of the year? Not the most popular, but the one that makes you happiest?:

Hmm. "Happiness is a Warm Gun," I'd say.

I remember how the final scene came to me, which was before I even started writing anything. I was walking in Cranbrook near the art academy buildings, listening to Yoko Kanno's "Fish ~ Silent Cruise" on my iPod. For the first two minutes of the song, there is this pretty choral music, but after that there is this stark switch; the music is from Ghost in the Shell, and plays over the moment when Motoko is fighting that DEA agent, the one with the military-grade exosuit who nearly cracked her cyberbrain. She is almost destroyed but then the sniper shows up and she grabs his gun, and just starts shooting at the DEA guy in this beautiful fury of rage.

I always think of that scene when I hear this song, and I imagined Megatron experiencing such a turning point with Starscream, where he had been cornered, allowing himself to be drawn into a trap from which he knew there might be no escape, because that was his only way to find freedom from his programming constraints. I looked off to the distant clouds gathering in the north, and had this almost painful swell of happiness as I could not only envision the scene, I really felt it, deep down inside.

My goal when writing fanfiction is to capture the heights of my imagination, but it's hard because I don't always experience it with such clarity. I have some methods for seducing the proper mood, but nothing is better than when such moments just come unexpected. Emily of New Moon would call it "the flash." I call it inspiration.

Did you take any writing risks this year? (See above for unexpected pairings, etc.) What did you learn from them?:

The biggest risk was when I tore apart "Immortal Emperor." Second biggest, the work I am currently doing on the second chapter of Sibyl, my Digimon fic. Facing up to what I see as my failures, in stories which had gained for me a not inconsiderable amount of praise in the past, has been humbling and sometimes quite painful. It is also scary, to literally throw away stuff that I used to think was good, just to make it better. But this risk has paid off, because it has shown me a lot more intimately what my own writing process is like, what my strengths and (more importantly) my weaknesses are. I have also done a great deal of beta work for [livejournal.com profile] anax, and that has also improved my writing.

Do you have any fanfic or profic goals for the New Year?:

No. None.

My best story of this year:

Truthfully? The anonymeme fic. Some of the best writing I have ever done can be found there. (Anyone who is interested in reading it, PM me and I can link you, but I'm not sure I want to out myself formally for an as-yet unfinished fic. It is a Transformers story, that is all I will say.)

Story of mine most under-appreciated by the universe, in my opinion:

Eh. I think this question leads me down a dangerous path. None of my stories with the possible exception of Happiness have received any large acclaim, and I'm quite content with that. I'm a much better writer now than when I used to get hundreds of comments on my stories at ff.net, so... being appreciated is sometimes a monkey's paw of a wish.

Therefore the answer is "none of them." As long as I am happy with them and want to read them over and over again, I count them as successes. I have [livejournal.com profile] anax betaing for me too, and he is good for making sure I stay on the straight and narrow path of excellence.

Most fun story to write:

Chivalry, the Gai/Ozai fic. I still wanna write some follow-up fic for that pairing someday. Ozai is hot because he is ridiculous, and Gai is hot because deep down, he isn't.

Story with the single sexiest moment:

My new chapter for Reflections, "The Forming Shrine," where Ken and Daisuke finally hook up, is soooo sexy to me. And all they do is kiss! I have realized that my erotic preferences in fanfic don't necessarily have anything to do with the actual consummation of sex, but more to do with the tenderness and true intimacy that I envision between two characters I deeply love. I had so much fun writing that and Daisuke is so clueless about his own desire for the vast majority of it, EVEN AS KEN IS KISSING HIM HE DOESN'T REALLY GET IT. I just love him sometimes.

Most "Holy crap, that's wrong, even for you" story:

My Mary Sue secret fic. XD God.

Story that shifted my own perceptions of the characters:

Happiness is a Warm Gun, particularly for my view of Megatron. A strangely underappreciated chap, despite how dearly loved he is in fandom. It actually hurts me sometimes when people write him to be an abusive rapist because wtf, where do they get that from. He's not Hitler, people! He's just a big giant insensitive robot pirate!!!!

Hardest story to write:

A Raven and the Crow. That is the long-threatened Pride and Prejudice inspired Ed/Scar AU. I am stymied by Corsica in this really weird way, and Corsica is where it all begins.

Biggest Disappointment:

The Unrenewed. That's more of an idea fic than anything else. I feel like I let the story down because I just wanted to get the idea out there. The idea behind it is sound, but... meh.

I could have done better.

Biggest Surprise:

My revisions for chapter 14 of Reflections. I did an about-face on the issue of Osamu. I think it's much better now and sets me up for where I want to take that story.

Most Unintentionally Telling Story:

"Love What I Love." I have always known that I resemble Daisuke in some critical ways, but I didn't really realize just exactly how much and how deeply I identified with him before. If I were an otakukin I'd be Daisuke.