I HAVE really missed you guys, and I hope your new year is starting out on the right foot!! I'm here a few days late to post a writing meme I do every year, not because I think anyone but me cares but because I think me cares a lot. Before I do that, let me be a big attention whore and mention that I wrote new fic!
Title: The Castaways
Fandom: Real Person Fic: CW
Characters/Pairings: Jared/Jensen with some vaguely implied future Genevieve/Danneel
Rating: NC-17 for explicit sexual content and past homophobia (off-screen), some internalized homophobia as a result
Word Count: 11,683
Author’s Note: Written as a spn_j2_xmas gift for dollarformyname.
Summary: AU: Jared is a passenger on a ship to America when a storm forces them to take refuge on the first spit of dry land they find. There, Jared finds Jensen, a man who has been stranded alone on the island for years.
And now here's the meme:
Pharmakon [CW RPF; Jared/Jensen] spn_reversebang - 35,221 (34,882 written in 2015)
Into the City of Woe [Supernatural; Sam/Dean] spn_reversebang - 19,998 (17,085 written in 2015)
Draw Three Figures on Your Heart [Supernatural] super_disney - 5,467
Growing Pains [Supernatural; Sam/Dean] spn_masquerade - 4,885
Baby Steps [CW RPF; Jared/Jensen] spn_masquerade - 6,722
What's In a Name? [Supernatural; Sam/Dean] - 1,500 (1,017 in 2015)
Off the Menu [CW RPF; Jared/Jensen] spn_meanttobe - 26,565
Chapter 5: The Impossible Dream [CW RPF; Jared/Jensen] spnanthology - 2,420
Outtakes [CW RPF; Jared/Jensen] salt_burn_porn - 8,402 (6,798 in 2015)
Inertia [Supernatural; Sam/Dean] spn_masquerade - 3,935
Tell-Tale [CW RPF; Jared/Jensen] spn_masquerade - 2,676
Gonna Take You to the Glory [Supernatural; Sam/Dean] spn_masquerade - 8,016
On Rough Seas [CW RPF; Jared/Jensen] to_pm_with_love - 5,370
The Castaways [CW RPF; Jared/Jensen] spn_j2_xmas - 11,683
Unpublished But Written in 2015:
Forever and a Day [CW RPF; Jared/Jensen] spnopera - 4,648
Homeward Bound [CW RPF; Jared/Jensen] unfinished/unclaimed spn_masquerade - 169
Sensory Overload [CW RPF; Jared/Jensen] unfinished spn_j2_bigbang - 42,963
Total Word Count: 185,301
Fandoms that I dabbled in this year, old and new: Supernatural and CW RPF. I also had fannish feelings about Hamilton, Kingsman, and Star Wars, but I only write in Supernatural.
My favorite story this year: Unfortunately, I think my favorite will be Sensory Overload once it's finished, but of course, it isn't, so right now it's too WIP to be a favorite. I think my personal favorite thing I wrote this year was actually the first thing I wrote this year, Pharmakon.
My least favorite story this year: Well, I really hate the spnopera draft I have going, but I think that may be because I stalled out on it in that period when you really hate what you're writing that always happens and then never got back into it so I could pull it to the other side. At this point, all I remember about it is how much I hated it and I'm scared to even reread what's there. Of the fics I posted? Maybe What's In a Name? That's something I've had sitting on my hard drive for literal years, and I really only finished it to have it off the backlog.
Most successful story: Going only off LJ comments, Pharmakon. I posted Off the Menu on AO3, though, which I did not do with Pharmakon, and I think LJ comments + AO3 comments puts it above Pharmakon. Plus it got kudos, lol, as if that's worth anything.
Story most underappreciated by the universe, in my opinion: I was surprised so few people read the mermaid!Jared fic I wrote, On Rough Seas. I didn't think it was bad.
Most fun story: I had so much fun writing for spn_masquerade this year, especially in the Spring round. I think Baby Steps was probably the best mix of hotness and fun for me as a writer.
Story with single sexiest moment: Can I say Baby Steps when Jensen is talking to Jared's mom through the door while dick slapping Jared on the other side? Is that…am I allowed to say that????
Biggest story fail: How about the 43,000 words of a spn_j2_bigbang that dollarformyname worked her ass off making amazing art for and which I still haven't been able to pull myself together enough to finish? :(
Hardest story to make: Sensory Overload is kicking my ass. Honestly, I think it should be. It's a way more complex scenario than I am used to writing, and it took several rounds of betas reading the first 30K to even begin to make sense. It will probably need 75-100K to be told the way it deserves to be told, and my previous longest fic was 53K, for reference. But I think that once I finally manage to get it done it will be a bit of a magnum opus, so here's hoping it all pays off sooner rather than later.
Looking back, did you write more fic than you thought you would this year, less, or about what you'd predicted? You know what? I always think I'm going to write more fic than I end up writing, but this year I thought I wrote way, way less than I actually did now that I have it all laid out in front of me. So that feels good. I'm tired of being disappointed in myaelf, so I'm letting it be enough.
What pairing/genre/fandom did you write that you would never have predicted in January? I didn't ever think I was going to write serial killers/dark boys, not because I don't love reading it but because other writers I admire do creepy so well and I could never live up. I did try it this year with a few things. I did not live up to the creepiness of the fic I love seeing from others, but I think there were some merits here and there.
Did you take any writing risks this year? What did you learn from them? I went really dark with demon!Dean in Into the City of Woe, even though I knew if I wrote a certain scene the way I wrote it, the warning on it would make tons of people decide not to read it. And I was indeed told by many people that's why they weren't going to read it. But you know what? At the end of the day, I'm really glad I went with a demon!Dean who acted like an actual demon, not that watered down crap Carver gave us. So—do what's right for the story, even if you know it'll cost you readers. The fic may not have gotten a lot of feedback, but 11 months later, I'm still pretty happy with it.
Story that shifted my own perceptions of the characters: Into the City of Woe helped me come to terms a little more with S10!Dean and what it means to be a Wincest shipper after his 9x01 character assassination, so that was helpful.
Biggest Surprise: I thought Pharmakon would only need to be about 14K and it turned out being 35K, so that was a, um…fun? surprise.
Story with the sweetest moment: Man, in Pharmakon when Jared learns about Jensen's depression and puts his hands on Jensen's throat.
Story that made you cry: Off the Menu had me crying buckets. I'M SO SORRY FOR THE THINGS I HAVE DONE TO YOU, BABY!JARED.
Most eye roll-worthy title: Would you believe if I said I'm actually pretty happy with my titles this year? Maybe The Castaways because I know that I am being subtle Hamiltrash with it. Or the unclaimed
Most intentionally telling: Outtakes, probably. This fic was 300% just me indulging my infidelity kink, who am I to lie????
Unintentionally?: Gonna Take You to the Glory was supposed to be a quick little PWP and instead it turned into 8K of PWP that was every single cockslut!Sam thing I ever wanted.
Most overdue: Sensory Overload if we're only talking this year's failures. Otherwise, jeez. Where to begin. The robotbigbang I should have finished in 2013.
This year's theme and the story that demonstrates it most: Depressing as it is to say, I think this year's theme was "defaulting on challenges and letting people down." I guess Sensory Overload is the best example of that, but I still really need to finish the spnopera fic amberdreams did lovely art for, too. :///
Favorite Opening Line(s):
It's like adopting a puppy at first. A sweet, harmless but harmed little thing with a face no one could turn away. There's no telling in those moments what you'll get when the damn thing grows up. You just know you've gotta do what you can.
He looks back on how this started some nights as he wipes down tables, watches the kid's thin ankle brush against someone else's, and tries to hold his bruised heart in its place. Jared needed him back when they first met. Now he doesn't let himself need anybody.
But there are times, like right now, when he lifts his head, bright eyes finding Jensen's across the restaurant, and his frown turns to big white teeth and dimples, just like it did when he was ten.
Jensen never could have done it differently. (Off the Menu)
Favorite Closing Line(s):
Dean muses on it for a few moments. It's a solid Winchester plan. Headstrong and ballsy, and fucked if he doesn't like it.
"You and me against all the demons in Hell, huh Sammy?" Sam nods, and Dean smiles. "I've been looking for an even fight." (Into the City of Woe)
Top 5 Scenes from Anywhere You Would Choose to Have Illustrated:
1. The Castaways - anything from this story! Maybe the boys on the ship in all their cuddly glory. Like. Jensen glued to Jared's side getting all excited about Grampuses and Jared just being like, "♥___♥ I hate them but I will pretend they are great if you like them."
2. Oh my god, Baby Steps with little baby!J2 holding hands in their Halloween costumes in the haunted house. I'D DIE.
3. A scene illustration from Pharmakon. The story was inspired by a great piece of art, but I'd love to see a piece of art inspired by the story. Maybe the Js out for a horseback ride or during the picnic. I am a schmoop.
4. Off the Menu already has some of the best art anyone's ever done for one of my fics (JENSEN'S TUMTUM), but I'd like to see him in his diner uniform, at work at Baby's.
5. Slutty, used, bruised knees and swollen lips Sammy from Gonna Take You to the Glory. I am a trash.
The things I've learned this year: In all honesty, I fell into a rut with fandom this year, and that's why my creativity fell off so much in the second half. I got really, really, really depressed for a long time and it's been rough. I'm not sure I learned anything from this, but the whole experience has sent me into 2016 hoping I can figure out how to make fandom fun again. Maybe this means taking stress off myself, not signing up for challenges no matter how fulfilling I've found them in the past. I worry that doing that will make me drift out altogether, but it's not like I don't still love this fandom and want to be a part of it, I just reached a place where I could not for the life of me tap into my creative side or enthusiasm or anything. So. I don't know. This is my hobby, it shouldn't be this hard. I guess that's what I learned.
Fic-writing goals for 2016: Year after year I tell myself I will post at least one fic in every month of the new year, and every year I fail. But I would like to continue to try! Really, my biggest thing is just this: I don't want to let people down. I let down some really kind and great artists and mods in 2015 and it feels like dirt. I'm hoping to finish the fics I owe people and just not let anyone else down.