Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Tuesday's Best 6-21-2011

Good morning, my lovelies! Hopefully today finds you all happy, healthy, and safe, wherever you are. Aradi and I have found some wonderful tales for you today, so let's just jump in feet first, shall we? 


I feel for y'all who come here expecting a straightforward rec, because often as not I trip into tangent-ville.  I could blame it on a million things, but really the fault is all mine.

And perhaps my ADD.

Anyway, I stalkered my way into a Twitter conversation that Vampireisthenewblack was having.  The jist was that the narrowness of recs from some slash-rec-writers was frustrating.  A bias toward promoting E/J fics leads to fewer non-E/J fics being written, etc.

It's true enough.  

I have my own preferences and biases which I've mentioned here often enough that you probably eyeroll when I repeat myself.  I love me some C&E.  I think Carlisle/Edward and Edward/Seth may as well be canon.  I fail to see the appeal of any of the rest of the wolves.  Jacob is downright gross.  Demitri should get more fic time.  Vamp slash is better than AH.  I don't really read femslash.  (et cetera, ad infinitum)

But as much as I say I won't read something, I'll read it (and rec it) anyway if it's well-written.  The dilemma becomes... how can I find it if it's "not something I read"?  Word-of-mouth I guess (since the search function at FFn is a tragic piece of crap, though I continue to rely on FFn for 99% of my Twilight fic).  Recs that come in updates of other stories I read.  Author alerts.

I could pop over to sites that focus more on the neglected characters, but it seems like a cheat to go to a rec site to find something to rec.

I still think the root of the "lack of non-E/J recs" issue is dire shortage of non-E/J fics.  Obviously, reviewers not giving recognition to the gems in that underrepresented group just feeds back into the problem.

Why don't people write more non-E/J?  

Do we know these two characters the most from the books?  Most of the Twilight characters are only marginally fleshed out in the book, even the ones that start to turn up frequently in slash fanfics (such as Riley).  Focusing on the guys, the ones I'd say are most developed in canon are Edward, Jacob and Carlisle, with Jasper not far behind.  (You know, I don't recall a Jacob/Carlisle fic.)

Are Jasper and Edward the most interesting characters?   Maybe, although most of that "interestingness" gets stripped away for an AH fic.

Do we carry canon baggage over into our fanfics?  Edward/Jacob brings with it the mortal enemy thing.  Carlisle with any of his "sons" brings along some skeevy incest issues for some folks.  It's possible, although I'd say Carlisle/Edward and Edward/Jacob are probably the next-most-common pairings after E/J, so maybe not.

Maybe the fandom has a thing for Edward/RPattz with Jasper/Jackson?  Arguably the image is tasty.

Do writers think we won’t read it?  Seems likely, and sad.

Really it would help me out a ton if all the writers out there would just start writing more under-explored pairs so that even an idiot like me would stumble across them.

I'm not saying that just because I want more new things to read.


Alternately, when you get grumpy that a fic you read (or write) gets neglected because it isn't E/J, feel free to send it my way (I'm Aradi on Twitter or UUAradi on FFn).  I won't promise a rec, but I will love you long time.  

And if you're someone who writes fanfic recs and you've stumbled across some amazing story that you think most of your readers won’t be interested in, recommend it anyway.  Maybe you'll turn someone on to something new.  It's not like your readers will turn against you for something "not to their taste."  They'll be back the next time because we're all addicts here.

At the very least you'll probably encourage a writer to write more, which is never a bad thing.

It should come as no surprise that this topic came from Vampireisthenewblack.  She's no stranger to interesting pairings (including Carlisle/Alec and Aro/Alec).  We've squeed over her Edward and Seth in Say Something Else (and I confessed an unhealthy appreciation for her warped Edward/Carlisle in Lost Boys).

She's taken an AU turn on her own story (Say Something Else) with the fic Déjà Vu.  She's very clear in her preface that this isn't a sequel or an outtake.  It's simply a "what-if," with a twist.

I love twisty things.

Déjà Vu picks up after Say Something Else (except it isn't really, don't forget) with Seth and Edward in a HEA trip to London.  All is as well as it can be, with Edward ostensibly getting over his loss of Alec.

Until Edward starts seeing Alec.

The assumption that I'm afraid forces me to think. My heart begins to beat again, hard and fast, and I let the air out of my lungs. "I'm dreaming," I whisper. It's the only explanation.

He gives a shrug so fluid that I know this can't be real. "It's probably not a silly idea."

That's not what he says when I'm dreaming about him. He tells me 'yes, you are', when I'm dreaming. This isn't the same. "This is real," I gasp. "You're real. You're alive..." I'm impelled forward, and I reach for him.

He's gone before I can touch him.

"I wouldn't say that. Not alive, as such. Not really."

I whirl around, following his voice. I find him behind me, and I see him clearly, now that the dim light from the street below illuminates his face through the window. So pale, almost white, and his skin is too perfect.

His eyes are blood red.

OMG yes.  Vamp fic.  *squee*

I'ts a situation that is just too wonderfully troublesome.  I mean, it's bad enough that the love of your life dies on you, then is possibly back.  (We won't even start with the vampire issue.)  But to have him back after you've found the “next” love of your life?

Oh yes.  I can taste the angst cakes from here.  And danger.  Mmm danger.

This is a fic for those who like it dark and supernatural, and if you thought Say Something Else was perfectly perfect the way it was you might not want to take this turn.

Then again, I thought it was perfectly perfect, but I still won’t pass this up.

There are only two chapters of Déjà Vu so far, but more are on the way.  Give it a try if it's your thing, and maybe even if it's not.

Then, the next time you see something that's "not your thing" be sure to give that a try too.  (And don't be ashamed to tell a friend that you liked it.)
There are times when I really love twitter, because sometimes you run across a little gem, like MsLeading’s With a Little Help from my Friends. It’s vamp slash, and written so well, it could have been canon.As in, Edward is very much in love with Bella, and Jasper with Alice. Don’t believe that’s possible? I dare you to read for yourselves, then.

Edward’s enlisted the help of Jasper in order to safely be able to stalk his beloved in the dead of night. He doesn’t trust himself not to succumb to his desires - be it that of her blood, or her body - so Jasper’s there to syphon his emotions.

This, of course, opens them up to a world of trouble neither could have foreseen. Kind of makes me wonder whether little Alice did, though. Hmm...

As it turns out, his admonishment is unnecessary, because presently she flutters in her sleep and exhales a soft, subtle, perfect moan. And suddenly, her respiration occupies every corner of my expansive mind. Jasper and I both stiffen in the spine and clench at the jaw - I because it is all I can do to remain confined to my rocking chair prison instead of more closely investigating that moan, and he because it is all he can do to swallow both flavors of my desire, wicking it away from me and bearing my burden like the stoic soldier he is.

She huffs again, lips pouting and brow furrowed as if opposing some figmental foe, and kicks the blankets off her body in slumbering defiance. This, of course, does not facilitate my task of keeping myself away from her tempting thighs. I nervously glance to Jasper reclining against the windowsill, and I can see that his fingers have carved clefts in the ledge that match those in the arms of my chair.

He notices my attention, and shakes his head slightly to dismiss my concern. It's fine, he reassures me, but even his thoughts feel strained.

She begins to writhe in earnest now, and I'd be concerned for the welfare of her sleeping mind if I wasn't so distracted by the way her tongue moved under her parted lips. "Bella," I sigh aloud, a single word to describe the spectacular destruction of everything I thought I knew about myself. I have never experienced lust like this, blood or otherwise.

Jasper groans audibly from the window, and I fear that our voyeurism is drawing to a close for the night. I've pushed him too far with my uncontrollable urges. I turn to him with shame in my heart and apology on my lips, ready to admit defeat for the evening, when he interrupts me.

It's not you... it's her.

What to do, what to do? Why don’t you go read for yourselves how the boys end up dealing with their precarious situation ;-)
There you have it, folks, two lovely tales that will leave you begging for more, I'm sure. Be sure to leave some lovin' for these wonderful authors, and check back next week to see what Conversed and I have in store for you then.
In the mean time, run over to the Twilight No Stress Love Fest and pick out a prompt or two. You still have 9 days to enter a fic or a banner or other art. It's all good fun, no judging, so why not jump in. The water's fine, I promise ;-)


vampireisthenewblack said...

Oh, god. I could KISS you right now. Not only for the diversity in pairings thing but for the Deja Vu mention. The SSE boys have my heart anyway, of course, but I've had so much fun twisting them and its doubly awesome that people are reading and loving it too.



robownsme said...

Wow, thank you for your post! It's like you've read my mind especially the part about Jacob. lol When I first started reading slash it's like I couldn't keep up with all the amazing E/J stories out there. Now, it's like every author that I grew to love and follow on Twitter has stopped writing. They've either moved on with other fandoms (damn you Harry and Draco!) or they've lost their muse. It makes me so sad that it's becoming harder and harder to find good stories with my favorite pairing. Damn, I wish I could write! :)