rosie_rues: (Yuletide)
[personal profile] rosie_rues
First off, write something you'll enjoy. It's exciting just to have someone who loves the same crazy little fandoms as me, and I want you to have as much fun with it as possible. I'm not going to lay down some crazily precise requests, because I know how much that would throw me off, but I will tell you what I like about the fandoms I chose and hopefully that will give you some ideas.



1. Jean Estoril - Drina books

Request: I'm interested in the stories behind the stories here, in the minor characters and how they see their world: Show me London through Ilonka's eyes or Rose torn between her family and her dreams. Or how Betsy Chester became Elizabeth Ivory, or how Adele Whiteway picked up the pieces of her life. Alternatively, I'd love to know more about Terza, about her escape to England and how she adapted to life in a new country.

I've been requesting this one for a a few years now, so I'll say more or less what I've said before. One of the things that is so effective about these books is how tightly they're tied to Drina's experience and perceptions, but all those people who point out how single-minded she is are quite right. I always find myself wondering about how the people around her are experiencing the time, the place, the same obsessions. I always adored Drina's big secret and the way she sometimes struggled to find her own way but I reread a lot of them a couple of years ago and it struck me how many other stories were crammed into the series - I found myself wondering about Marianne Volonaise and Igor Dominick Sr; about how Mrs Chester felt watching her daughter grow up; about Elizabeth Ivory herself and her transformation from gawky Betsy to ballerina- so many tantalising glimpses in the books. I wanted to know more about the Lorencz family and their escape from behind the Iron Curtain or about the life led by Adele Whiteway (who I think I always assumed was a lesbian) when Drina's not looking, about Rose, and how her working class background affects the way she relates to ballet (rereading them I can't help but feel uneasy about the way that Rose's cultural awareness and sensibilities are steadily 'improved' through the series). Give me a sense of the time and place and tell me about one of these people and I'll be overjoyed.

2. Chronicles of Chrestomanci - Diana Wynne Jones

Request: I'd like to see what the younger generation did next, especially the girls. It could be just after the books or when they're adults. Julia and Janet as debutantes tracking down dubious upper-class warlocks; Cat getting to grips with dwimmer; Marianne venturing offworld; the whole lot of them off on a Grand Tour of Europe and stumbling into ridiculous adventures - or anything else that tickles your fancy. Gen, het or slash are all welcome, although I'd rather not see any cross-generation pairings. Marianne is my favourite DWJ heroine.

Diana Wynne Jones has been one of my favourite writers since I was seven and stumbled across a copy of Charmed Life. I loved Cat then, elusive and quiet and stubborn as he was, and when The Pinhoe Egg came out so many years later, I was so excited to see him come into his power and grow in confidence. For the first time, I believed that Cat actually could be a pretty effective Chrestomanci himself one day, in his own dwimmer-wielding style. And, of course, there was Marianne as well. I love how solid and unflashy she is, whilst still being one of those DWJ characters who gets things done in their own, unexpected ways. She's also such a contrast to the rest of the castle kids, and I love fics which play about with that contrast.

Don't feel you have to restrict this to the two characters I've mentioned, though - I picked these two because they're my favourites but feel free to chuck in anyone from the series, Caprona kids included.

3. Rosemary Sutcliff - The Silver Branch

I love the relationship between these two and how well they complement each other (as friends or as lovers, as you prefer). I'd like to see more of them working together, or some focus on Justin's medical skills, perhaps when they're up on the Wall or when they're working with Paulinus, but don't consider that prescriptive.

Um, so, yeah this is the book I think of as The Book That's A Thousand Times Slashier Than The Eagle of the Ninth. That said, that's not all that entertains me about the book, so gen fic is equally cool. I love the sequence where they're working with Paulinus and the whole cloak and dagger feel to it. I'm a sucker for military details and seeing them deal with the everyday challenges of command. The thing that keeps drawing me back to Sutcliff's books, even as an adult, is way she describes Roman Britain: this misty, rainswept island at the far end of an empire that her Romans cannot bear to leave behind.

4. Swan Lake

I'd like to see something that explores the relationship between the two women. Don't feel obliged to stick to the original setting or period - a modern or steampunk version could be pretty cool. Femslash welcome but not essential.

I like stories about swans and transformation and blurred identities. I like to see women taking control of their own stories and finding their own voices. There are so many places to dig into this story and turn it inside-out - don't be afraid to take it apart in the process.

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