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My 2008 in Review

3rd January 2009 (14:13)
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Since it's now a tradition (meaning, I did it last year as well), here's a quick review of what I wrote last year. I've not gone into it in as much detail because instead I now have two shiny index pages, for Fanfiction and Meta, which contain links and summaries to everything I wrote.

 


Fanfic

This was the year of the longer, multi-chapter fic for me.

Three interlinked stories detailing Willow's mystical walkabout, her first meeting with Saga Vasuki and Kennedy's (temporary) death, as mentioned but not really explained yet in Season 8:
Legally Dead
And All My Secrets Laid Bare (3 chapters) Contains several woman/giant serpent goddess sex scenes, which were...interesting to write.
In Sure And Certain Hope.

A six-chapter Buffy/Aliens crossover. I had fun making up the movie poster for this story, and various photomanips of 'Aliens' screencaps to insert Buffy at appropriate moments:
We Just Declared War

A four-chapter timetravel story in which 16-year old Buffy meets 24-year old Buffy. Describing how the older version would seem to her younger self was an interesting challenge.
Past Imperfect, Future Conditional, Present Tense

And a ten-chapter genderswap fic where Buffy has to cope with a sudden and inexplicable change in her lifestyle:
One Day In The Life Of Buffy Summers

I also wrote several stand-alone stories, of course.

Matthew 1.23, Except Not was a response to a comment I read, "Why do people write mpreg but nobody ever writes fpreg?" So I did. Kennedy is expecting Willow's baby. Aww.

In May I went through what might be described as a morbid period, writing several fics about death:

Dead Letter - Xander is mourning Anya and decides to resolve his feelings in a rather unorthodox way. So far, my only Xandercentric fic.
How The Heroes Die - this came from a challenge on RPG.net to write the "best possible" or most appropriate death scene for your favourite characters from fiction.
Once And Future - I should probably acknowledge Marion Zimmer Bradley's 'Mists of Avalon' as an influence on this fic. And Greg Stafford's 'Pendragon'.
The Choser and the Chosen - bad poetry alert.
Not written in May but appropriate to mention here is On The Whispering Wind, a comedy fic in which Buffy, after her death in 'The Gift', is welcomed to Heaven and given an orientation tour and lecture by an angel named André. Of course in Buffy's version of heaven the stores are never all closed.

The Slayer's Handbook caused much amusement when I wrote it. I like this piece because of its nicely precise structure; it's a double drabble, with the actual quote from the handbook being exactly 100 words long, and the framing text giving Giles's thoughts before and after reading it also being exactly 100 words long. It's neat.

Caught Sleeping was written for a challenge in fantas_magoria. It's possible that I'm the only person ever to write a Buffyverse story set in Madrid in the year 1843.

Performance Review was an all-dialogue 'missing scene' comedy fic in which Kennedy and Satsu discuss Buffy.

Finally, What Can Change The Nature Of A Man? has Buffy leading a rescue mission into the stronghold of an ancient goddess who asks all her visitors the same, simple question - but if they get it wrong, they die. Possibly because nobody on LJ had heard of the crossover fandom, I think only about one person actually read this.

I also wrote a couple of T:SCC ficlets. Lessons is about the rather messed up mother-son relationship between John and Sarah, and is a missing scene from 'Samson and Delilah'. Hair chronicles a particular moment in Cameron's search for her identity. Meanwhile, A Storm Coming In is a T:SCC/Buffy crossover detailing how Cameron first arrived in 20th century Southern California in her search for John. She actually arrived in a little town just outside Los Angeles, called Sunnydale...


Meta

I wrote several in-depth character analysis pieces in 2008. Several of these were sparked by reading comments by other people criticising various aspects of the show, and my immediate reaction of "That's not true!" was then modulated into "And I'll prove it, with diagrams and logical arguments!" :-)

Two of these were about Buffy. Robbing Banks For Fun And Profit took the revelation that she has been financing her Slayer Army through crime and used it as a base to discuss her changing sense of ethics over the years. ("Human rules don't apply. There's only me. I am the law." - from 'Selfless'). Risk The Pain - It Is Your Nature was a more general look at Buffy's character development, aiming to show both the constant progression (with each season building on the last) and the consistent elements within her character.

The Will To Power was an attempt to analyse an aspect of Willow's story which, I think, is often neglected or dismissed as "not making sense". What happened to her after her rise and fall in season 6? Why did she make the choices she did in Seasons 7 and 8? And is it true that she never once had an orgasm between 'Seeing Red' and 'Touched'? Speaking of which, Magic As A Metaphor For Gay Sex was sparked by the inspiration that Willow trying to give up her magic in late S6 could be read as a metaphor for those people trying to "stop being gay" by going to scary fundamentalist "But I'm A Cheerleader" style brainwashing camps.

Lastly, All About Satsu was a giant picspam and 5,332-word essay dedicated to proving that the commonly-made statement "We don't know a thing about Satsu" is blatantly untrue. :-)

Other things I wrote included a Guide To 'Fray' for people unfamiliar with that comic series and a couple of articles on 'Scoobies and their Sextoys' which provoked a lot of comments. While writing 'One Day...' I also wrote a meta essay giving my Thought On Genderswap Fanfic.

I wrote one item of T:SCC meta, on Faith, Reason and Morality, Terminator-style.


Vids

I created three vids in 2008:

A title credits sequence for the Angel:After The Fall comics.

'Do You Hear The People Sing?'/'A La Volonté Du Peuple' used music from 'Les Miserables' and images from 'After The Fall'. As a tribute to the Anglo-French partnership in the original musical, I also created two versions of this vid: one in English and the other en français.

'It's Not', featuring the Aimee Mann song, was a look at Buffy in Season 6.


Transcripts and Reviews

I continued to review the Buffy Season 8 comics as they came out. I stopped doing that for Angel:After The Fall; I'm still reading it but it's not inspiring me enough to want to write extensively about it. I also did a review of the Megan Gogerty "tribute album" 'I Miss Buffy' and the original pilot of the show.

I started transcribing Joss's DVD commentaries of Buffy episodes, and finished four of them in 2008. I also created transcripts of the original pilot episode of the TV show, and the comic adaptation of the movie script.


Art

I edited a page of 'The Long Way Home' to give Buffy Macbeth's lines instead. That was fun. I also created chibi images of various characters from the shows.