luxken27: (meta - fanfic is most difficult)
LuxKen27 ([personal profile] luxken27) wrote2012-03-11 03:21 pm

Author's Notes: Year in Review

Today marks my official fandom anniversary, as close as I can tell. I’m not sure exactly when I first dipped my toes into the fanfic/fanart pool (I watched the Inuyasha anime and read the manga up to date sometime during the summer of 2007, then started searching out fanart, which lead to fanfic, which lead to Christmas ’07 as a Tales from the House of the Moon timesink, which lead to even more reading of ‘major fandom works’), but I do know that on March 11, 2008 I signed up for an account at Media Miner and posted the first three chapters of Every Heart, with no small amount of trepidation.

The rest, as they say, is history…

2009 in review | 2010 in review | 2011 in review


Story Stats
Total words written (as accounted for in MS Word): 118,620

Total words by fandom:
Baby-sitters Club: 33,119
General Hospital: 2,414
Inuyasha: 9,150
Jonathan Creek: 3,303
Kids Incorporated: 70,634

Total stories written (started, WIP, completed): 32
• Total number of drabble (100-500 words): 0
• Total number of oneshots (501+ words): 25
• Total number of completed multichapter fics: 0
• Total number of WIP multichapter fics: 1
• Total number of completed series: 2
• Total number of WIP series: 4

Total number of fiction archives used: 6

Total number of hits/reviews:
Media Miner
Archive of Our Own
(+ LiveJournal, Dreamwidth)

Most reviewed stories [title (pairing), number of reviews compiled across all archives]
Fleeting (IY, Sess/Kag): 256
Collected Works (IY, various): 205
The Best Friends You’ll Ever Have (BSC, various): 112
Fragments (IY, Mir/San): 109

Fandom Recognition (IY)
Total number of awards won (fandom-wide/pairing-centric): 5
• 1st Place: 1
• 2nd Place: 2
• 3rd Place: 2
• Other nominations: 5

Categories nominated into (fandom-wide, pairing-centric): 7
Best Angst (Feudal Association)
Best Canon (IYFG)
Best Characterization (Feudal Association)
Best Darkfic/Horror (IYFG)
Best Drabble (IYFG)
Best Oneshot (Feudal Association, IYFG)
Best Romance – Mir/San (IYFG)

Categories placed (fandom-wide, pairing-centric): 3
Best Angst (2nd Place, Feudal Association – December 2011)
Best Oneshot (3rd Place, Feudal Association – March 2011; 3rd Place, IYFG 3rd Term 2011)
Best Romance – Mir/San (2nd Place, IYFG 3rd Term 2011)

Categories won (fandom-wide, pairing-centric):
Best Oneshot (IYFG, 1st Term 2011)

Most lauded fic (won/placed with the most awards):
No Ordinary Woman, 2 placements in 3 nominations, 1 of them 1st Place

Challenges started/ongoing: 7 ([ profile] un_love_you prompt table, [ profile] babysitters100 prompt table, [ profile] help_japan charity auction, Trick-or-Treat LJ meme, Yuletide exchange, [ profile] fandom_stocking exchange, [community profile] 10_letters prompt table)

Challenges completed: 4 (Trick-or-Treat LJ meme, [ profile] help_japan charity auction, Yuletide exchange, [ profile] fandom_stocking exchange)

Longest completed multichapter fic: Every Heart (73,171 words)
Longest current WIP: Stacy in Bloom (103,708 words)

2011 Goals ~ How did I do?
Here’s the list of goals I made at the end of last year’s post, as points I wanted to accomplish this year…so, did I succeed, fail, or go off in a completely different direction?

Finish Fragments.
Done! =) I actually managed to get two long-suffering IY WIPs off my plate last year ~ an accomplishment I’m immensely proud of, LOL.
Finish (and begin posting) Object Lesson.
Unfortunately, I didn’t even touch this story – its sitting at the same place it was on this day last year :-/
Finish Stacy in Bloom.
LOL. I knew this would probably be the goal I failed at the hardest, and that is definitely true. I *did* manage to write almost up to the halfway point, which I’ll take.
Write more General Hospital fic.
Done! =) Although not as much as I was hoping, I did produce two ficlets for my pairing over the course of the last year. Unfortunately, the show plunged downhill in a *HUGE* way, so I barely even watched it, much less wrote fic for it.
Continue to support my “small” fandoms as much as possible.
This has become a total no-brainer ~ I absolutely love finding fandom friends and squeeing like the total nerd that I am, LOL. In fact, over the course of the last year, I think I’ve grown closer to a couple of fandom friends, enough that I can call them just plain ol’ -friends- at this point.
Continue leaving the sorts of reviews I'd like to receive myself.
Another habit that has been established, I think. Nowadays, when I leave feedback, it is always of the sort that I know will be appreciated, and substantive enough to be something I, myself, would like to receive for my work. There’s nothing better than a positive feedback loop, and I think I’ve accomplished that over the course of the last few years.

But what are your thoughts on yaoi?
My fourth year in fandom started off very promisingly, and ended with something of a flourish, but unfortunately, it was also pockmarked with months-long swathes of crippling depression.

Looking over my years in review in preparation for this post, one of the things that I noticed is that my word count has continually fallen. Some of this is to be expected; back in 2008-09 I was in graduate school and enjoyed a fairly unstructured schedule, with lots of time to write and play in fannish waters. A lot has happened since then – two major moves, finding and holding on a job in this shitty economy – but still. If there’s one thing I’m most disappointed about this year, it’s that I barely crested 100K words. Considering all of the different fandoms I’m in (and all of the stories I worked on/finished), that number seems awfully low.

But then – considering how many months I didn’t write, I guess it’s actually just about right.

Looking back at it, March 2011 was one of the busiest months for me, along with June and December. I posted Chapter 20 of Stacy in Bloom, the second ficlet in my GH Lost in Translation collection, and two oneshots for [ profile] babysitters100: “Rekindled” and “Reconnected,” a continuation of my love-affair with the Sam Thomas/Stacey McGill pairing ♥ I also donated my services to the [ profile] help_japan charity auction, which was raising money in the wake of the devastating earthquake and tsunami.

I’d never done a charity auction before, but my reasoning for joining this one was twofold: first of all, I was so freaking happy that [ profile] langus_fiction was safe ~ she’s one of the only people I know in Japan, and for the first few hours after the earthquake, I was desperately following the news and trying to figure out if she was okay. One of my uni friends was also in Japan at the time, so it was a huge relief to find them both safe and sound. Secondly, it was a Japanese series that got me into fandom in the first place, so I figured if there was any auction worth my time, it was this one. Inuyasha taught me so much about Japanese culture and history, and the fandom gave so much to me that I basically couldn’t resist it. It’s silly, but it was my way of ‘giving back’ – and it was for an awesome cause. I had two people bid for my services, and both of them donated to Médecins Sans Frontières in exchange for their stories.

The other cool thing that happened in March was a spate of Kids Incorporated secrets popping up at [ profile] fandomsecrets. Considering the relative obscurity of the show (and the fact that it aired before 80% of the commenters at [ profile] fandomsecrets were born), that made me smile like an idiot for an entire week, LOL. Love, love, love when my tiny fandoms receive unexpected recognition! =)

April started out ominously, with the long-awaited release of Sweet Valley Confidential. Unfortunately, the book was even more awful than expected, with eye-bleedingly horrible prose and so many canon mistakes that I wonder to this day if Francine Pascal is an actual person (as opposed to a team of ghostwriters). Never before have I witnessed a series creator fuck up their canon that much – seriously, it’s something to behold, and not in a good way o.O

Good things were also happening in KI: I reached the 50 review mark milestone for Stacy in Bloom; the interactions with that reviewer, [ profile] keb_01, was pretty much the highlight of my year. Finally – another girl who (1) remembered the show and loved it as much as I did, and (2) also had a hardcore crush on Ryan Lambert. There’s nothing quite like bonding over a twenty-five-year-old crush, LOL! :P I wrote a giftfic for her, Secrets, along with one of two proposed ‘cut’ scenes. I also posted up Chapter 21 of Stacy in Bloom. Things were going swimmingly until…

April 27. The day the tornadoes terrorized the South, and my home state in particular. Though I was not directly affected (a goddamn miracle, considering the storms that ravaged the county I live in), I did have some shock and stress over the whole ordeal. A couple of my friends and coworkers had damage to their properties; my supervisor at work was out for almost a week dealing with everything that had happened. I was also in the midst of a very stressful project at work, and the storms and their aftermath only added to it. My creativity came to a screeching halt as I dealt with more immediate RL situations.

As a result, May was a very quiet month. I posted two stories – A Birthday Surprise, my birthday gift!fic for [ profile] keb_01, and the winning commission from the [ profile] help_japan auction, a Jonathan Creek story entitled One Foot in the Grave. The agony I went through to produce that story was such that I pretty much decided that I was done attempting to write fic for Jonathan Creek. I still loved the show as much as ever, but felt completely inadequate at capturing the characters in a way that was true to the canon.

June was definitely the highlight of my year =) The plagiarism case vs Glickman was finally resolved, finally freeing me to fully enjoy KI fandom again without worrying about its trolls. I posted the third ficlet in my Lost in Translation series for GH, as well as two oneshots for my [ profile] babysitters100 claim: “Reconnected,” which was part of the Rekindled ’verse, and “The Dangling Conversation,” which was my personal favorite fic of the entire year. That story satisfied me in so many different ways that it’s stupid. I just loved everything about it – the characters, the letters, the way I managed to weave in BSC canon. The response I received was also quite satisfying; it’s probably one of the best-received fics that I’ve written for this fandom.

The other awesometastic thing that happened in June was also KI-related: finding out that my OTP also happened in real life ♥ I still remember the day that [ profile] snarky_imp so casually mentioned it to me, hinting that I’d find a certain page of the Fergie interview from the July 2011 issue of Allure especially interesting. This sent me (and [ profile] keb_01) into a frenzy (during work, LOL! :P), trying to find the magazine to see what it said. I finally managed to find a scan of the page on the internet, and OMG. Talk about feeling high as a kite, LOL ~ that did it. The reason this was so exciting was because it has long been a fandom debate as to whether or not Ryan Lambert and Stacy Ferguson dated offset, because their chemistry in character was all sorts of ridiculous. Both actors were more or less mum on the subject, and considering we’re talking about the late 80s? Yeah. We’d pretty much given up hope of ever finding out for sure, so to hear (see?) it straight from Fergie’s mouth in 2011 was as surprising as it was exciting.

Also in June, I launched my first-ever journal-based challenge as well: the Summer Mini Challenge, which ran for the entire summer. It was pretty simple: five prompt tables, consisting of five different prompts, with very few rules. It was a lot of fun to run (so many awesome people signed up and wrote wonderful things!), and I fully intended to participate myself, but alas – it didn’t happen :-/ Still, launching the challenge was a lot of fun, and pretty damn successful, if I do say so myself =)

July saw the launch of [ profile] kidsincdaily / [community profile] kidsincdaily, a daily picture/video comm for KI, something [ profile] keb_01 and I had been brainstorming about for the better part of a month :D A daily dose of KI cheer was exactly what I needed, as I reached my breaking point with my project at work. I also completed the 30-day fandom history and inspiration meme (I’m a sucker for meta, LOL), and a frothy little KI oneshot, Never Been Kissed. All of this (other than the meme) happened in the first half of the month; by the end, driven by RL (especially work) stress, I found myself in the deepest depression I’d experienced in six years. Fandom more or less took a back seat as I dealt with everything else.

There were a few bright spots in August. One was the release of Kill Moi’s debut album (and thus, the promise of more, recent, Ryan Lambert-related media). Another was discovering, definitively, the setting of KI’s fantastical universe (which has been another long-standing fan debate). I also contributed another oneshot to [ profile] babysitters100, “Daddy’s Little Girl.” This was inspired by [ profile] ozqueen’s beautiful “Money,” and it was my first attempt at writing the fandom-darling Pikes. It received a quiet response, but that was okay ~ fandom was still on my back burner.

I don’t think I fully rejoined fandom until I published my OTP manifesto in late September. This was a month-long labor of love, rewatching the entirety of the KI canon and looking for all of the subtle hints, clues, and bits of subtext that fed into my adoration of my childhood OTP – Ryan/Stacy (the characters) from Kids Inc. I think working on such a big, expansive project was good for me in a couple of different ways – it gave my free time some structure (which was sorely needed), and it woke up my love for this pairing once more, out from under the heaviness of my depression. Even now, I go back and look at it whenever I need to remember why I love that series, and those characters, enough to devote nearly 200,000 words to them in less than two years :P

The manifesto, originally intended for [ profile] ship_manifesto, swelled to over 40,000 words, 141 images, and 85 video clips. (Hmm…I guess I should’ve included that word count in my total for the year.) It was the first thing I’d done in months that made me feel truly happy and accomplished, along with turning into a celebratory lovefest, hehe ♥ It’s a little too long to post to the comm now, but I’m still hoping to at least advertise it there and, maybe, find more fans of this ship and this series =)

The Summer Mini Challenge also came to a successful conclusion, prompting 35 new pieces of fanfic and original work. It was so much fun that I’m contemplating doing another one this summer – if only because I’m already in the same boat as last year, wanting to finish stories but feeling little motivation to do so! :P

I fed off my rekindled love for KI in October, writing “Secret Admirer,” a fill for [ profile] gloriafan’s het comment ficathon, as well as the next three chapters of Stacy in Bloom. I posted two of them, including the so-called “Big Date” chapter, which weighed in at an incredible 14,575 words. That’s the longest chapter I’ve ever written for a story, fanfic or original, and it was another accomplishment that made me feel great =)

The end of October saw the impromptu Trick-or-Treat meme spreading across my LJ f-list, and I was happy to take part in it :D It was a lot of fun trying to find goodies for so many different people on such short notice. I wrote two gift!fics along the way – “Hanging by a Moment” for [ profile] lucida, and “Strategy” for [ profile] gloriafan. The former was a romantic Sam/Stacey story, set during their get together mid-canon; the latter was my first stab at writing a BSC/KI crossover – one which spawned a long, complicated story idea. I was very tempted to follow that impulse and start writing it, but I refrained, considering how many WIPs I had on my plate already. The idea is still waiting in my KI notebook, though, and one day, I hope to write it =)

Having so many unfinished stories was really starting to weigh on me. In dealing with my RL stress and depression, I developed this urgent desire for completion – to tie up some of the loose ends that were plaguing me. For fandom, I decided to give myself a Get Shit Done list. Along with finishing stories long on hiatus, I put down the two holiday exchanges I’d signed up for in November: Yuletide and [ profile] fandom_stocking.

I managed to generate some ideas for said exchanges thanks to the BSC character meme =) I started working on my Get Shit Done list as well, turning back to IY fandom for basically the first time in over a year. I decided to close the Allegiance universe to new entries and began posting it in chronological order on with a light edit. I wrote the final chapter of Fragments as well, closing the door on my time on the Mir/San ship. I felt more relief than anything else about getting these two stories off my plate; my IY friends were drifting away, but I wanted to hold steadfast to my promise to finish my WIPs, no matter how long it took.

I continued my writing momentum in December, finishing another long-looming project: the second commission for [ profile] help_japan, also an IY story. With all of those stories completed, it left two things on my IY plate: a giftfic, and Fleeting. That felt pretty damn amazing (as opposed to overwhelming), considering I’m more or less out of the fandom now. Two stories feels a lot more doable than five, and it’s actually something I hope to tackle this year.

But I digress =) My attention turned to BSC fandom for the holiday exchanges, which were fast approaching by mid- to late December. In preparation for my Yuletide idea, I wrote up a Complete Guide to Janine Kishi and shared it with the greater BSC fandom. I basically write my Yuletide story blind, on a hope and prayer that my recipient would like it (and, luckily, she did ♥ ). Mine was one of four BSC stories for the fest, and it was actually the only het fic as well as the least popular, which sort of stung. My recipient loved it, however, as did a dozen or so other folks, and it finally gave me a story to break into the triple digits on the hit counter at AO3, so I’d say it was a net win :D I also received an amazing story myself, and found half a dozen other great ones in the collection, which I shamelessly pimped :P

In between Yuletide and [ profile] fandom_stocking, I wrote two gift!fics for my KI fandom BFFs, keb_01 and gloriafan. It was nice to get back to my ‘home’ fandom and write for my favorite pairing, and both fics were hits with their recipients: Bereaved, for [ profile] gloriafan, and For Christmas, and Forever, for [ profile] keb_01. I enjoyed writing both immensely, and it was a great reminder of how much I just love KI.

[ profile] fandom_stocking was the last stop on my whirlwind December tour, and it was a lot of fun to find fun things and/or write stories for awesome people. I pitched in three BSC fics, which would be added to my catchall collection (and [ profile] babysitters100 prompt table): “Close Encounters of the Awkward Kind” for [ profile] isabelquinn; “Confidant” for [ profile] baseballchica03; and “Sussudio” for [ profile] ozqueen.

The socks were unveiled in early January, and I was so completely overwhelmed by all of the lovely, amazing, adorable things I found in mine. Fics, icons, pictures from friends and strangers alike, but the best of all was definitely [ profile] bsc_squee, a comm created by [ profile] ozqueen to celebrate all of the awesomeness that is the Baby-sitters Club. I’d never had a community made in my honor before, so that was amazing enough, but the fact that it’s a comm dedicated to squee? Totally put me over the top, LOL. So much love for [ profile] ozqueen ♥ and for BSC fandom in general ♥ ♥ ♥

January was also something of a transition period. LJ basically imploded with Release 88 in late December, so a lot of things were up in the air, as people tried to decide whether or not to abandon ship. I’d been sprucing up my Dreamwidth journal as a mirror all along thanks to the multiple DDoS attacks in 2011, so I guess I was in a better position than most to be flexible about where I posted. As it is, I actually crosspost to LJ now, though I still check my f-list everyday (several times a day, just like always!). Given all the shenanigans, however, I did decide to let my paid LJ time lapse. This was a difficult decision; I’ve had paid time on LJ for three years, and it’s completely enhanced my fandom experience. It’s going to be hard to pare back, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to give my money to a service that’s actively working against my interests.

In January, I mostly posted author’s notes for all of the stuff I did in December :P I was very busy at work, and had little time to do more than make another Get Shit Done list. I managed to somehow get into Aris’s good graces at the turn of the year, which was awesome. He’s basically the king of KI fandom, so I felt like I’d ~made it~, LOL. He’s super-nice and quite generous and – yeah. Talk about an awesome way to start the year ♥

The other bright spot for the month was the annual posi-posts at [ profile] fandomsecrets. I contributed two, and it was a lot of fun to watch the threads they spawned ♥

February produced an unexpected and truly shittastic situation in RL, taking my focus off fandom (again) and putting me seriously behind on my Get Shit Done list. Said situation sent me spiraling back into a relapse of depression. It was on one such Saturday that I happened upon Square Pegs. I’d bought the DVDs basically on a whim more than a year ago, but it was the first time I’d really sat down and watched the show. And I fell in love ♥ It was a great distraction, yes, but it was also more than that. For the first time in months, I felt like writing again.

I picked up a couple of prompt tables at [community profile] 10_letters, looking to repeat my success with Valentine’s Day fic from last year. This was another step out of the box, as it’s the first writing community I’ve joined and participated in on Dreamwidth. I decided to write KI fic, having not yet fully formed my thoughts on characterization for Square Pegs, and set to work. My goal was to have the story finished so that I could start posting it on V-Day, but unfortunately, this was right around the time my RL took a turn for the worse. I did start posting the series, Love Letters, even though I haven’t finished writing it; it’s been a week-to-week struggle to press forward, but I’m determined to finish this story before it spirals out of control and only adds to my already overfull WIP plate.

The end of February was also when I discovered Fuck Yeah Fanfic Flamingo, which is hilarious and eerily true to fandom life, in all of the thoughts that go through your head as a fanfic writer (oh, the procrastination!). Going through the archives was a total frickin’ hoot, and I’ve bookmarked it for future reference. Anytime I need a laugh, I definitely know where to go :D

All in all, I’d say I broke even on the year – there were highs, there were lows, and unfortunately, it was incredibly uneven. But, for the first time, I can say that it wasn’t due to fandom factors. I spent the vast majority of the time I *was* in fandom focusing on the small, older, nostalgic series, which were mercifully free from wankery (save the KI trolls). I felt like I strengthened the friendships I’d made before, and I made a few new ones as well =) I think I also found a balance in IY fandom. It sucks that I’ll never have those close friendships and ties that I’d developed four years ago, but what can you do? We all moved on, and inevitably, that meant we’d move in different directions.

I’m incredibly grateful for the friends I do have – and I consider everyone on my f-list to be a friend (or else you wouldn’t be on it, LOL!) I still go back and check the YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL meme that made the rounds back in April; I don’t know everyone who responded to my thread, but even now, your kind words touch me. It’s easy to feel isolated and/or lonely in small fandoms, so it’s nice to know you’re still appreciated, even when it’s quiet.

Basically, what I’m trying to say is that you guys rock, and without you, I wouldn’t be half the fan I am today =)

Personal favorite stories (listed in chronological order)
The Dangling Conversation” (June 27, 2011)
Never Been Kissed” (July 18, 2011)
Heaven is a Place on Earth” – Chapter 23 of Stacy in Bloom (October 10, 2011)
Close Encounters of the Awkward Kind” (December 28, 2011)

Goals for the next 12 months:
FINISHED ALL OWED FIC OMFG. If there’s anything I’m currently feeling overwhelmed by, it’s the sheer amount of work I owe to other people. I want it off my plate, so my recipients are happy, and so that I can write for myself again (and all of the tempting challenges that are showing up on my f-list…)
Finish Fleeting. I’m ready to be done with my obligations to IY fandom, and the conclusion of this story is long overdue.
Try out one or two ‘new’ fandoms. This is already going to happen, as I’m hoping to write an Instant Star story as a 2012 NYR, but I’m also hoping to get the chance to play with Square Pegs…and maybe something else I’ve yet to discover =)
Finish and post Object Lesson, my ‘original’ Charlie/Janine story that pulled me into writing BSC fanfic in the first place. My Charlie/Janine stories have been warmly received in the fandom, so I’m feeling a bit more confident that this one will receive a response as well.
Finish Stacy in Bloom. Probably not going to happen, but I’d definitely like to get further along into the storyline, so that I can start working on its sequel. I love this story so fucking much – it is truly my happy place ♥
gloriafan: Tom and Sybil from "Downton Abbey." (The Cosby Show - Giggly)

[personal profile] gloriafan 2012-03-15 04:34 am (UTC)(link)
Congratulations for another year of amazing fandom squee ♥

Here's to another great year! It's been amazing to meet and get to know you over the past year ♥

[identity profile] 2012-03-11 09:44 pm (UTC)(link)
You accomplished so much more than me! Also, your memory and skill for summarizing an entire year is awesome. I'd be jealous if I weren't so pleased for you. ;)

I'm sure 2012 will go great for you, fandom and otherwise!

[identity profile] 2012-03-12 05:52 pm (UTC)(link)
Your organizational skills are mindblowing and kinda scary! LOL Congrats on your milestones and I am totally impressed with your upcoming plans!

[identity profile] 2012-03-14 06:00 pm (UTC)(link)
Congrats on another successful year. Thanks for finishing Fragments and Allegiance. Good luck finishing Stacey in Bloom and Fleeting.