taabe: Looking out from Monument Mountain (mountains)
2017-01-15 05:44 pm

And I still don't know from anime or figure skating

Last weekend's Snowflake challenge distracted me into writing fic for the first time in a while. Yuuri and Victor fic. Sanj and Kouredios introduced me to Yuri on Ice at the new year, and I fell for it happily, because Yuuri and Victor have a rare depth and kindness and, more than anything, equality between them. But I've been cautious about writing in their worlds, because I know so little about Hasetsu or St. Peterburg. 

And then the Snowflake folks asked for a small fanwork, and in my head Yuuri started writing a tanka. (Like a Haiku, only longer and with a different, well, background.) And then the tanka needed context. So here you are. An attempt at a little hope on a January Sunday evening.
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2017-01-06 03:55 pm

Fanciful wish list

I woke up this morning with a thought and handed it to my room-mate as she headed out the door — when someone vids Yuri and Victor to Halo, you're gonna tell me, right?

And then the Snowflake Challenge folks gave me this — In your own space, create a list of at least three fannish things you'd love to receive, something you've wanted but were afraid to ask for — a fannish wish-list of sorts. Are we sharing a wavelength?

And I would love that vid, seriously, because who wouldn't. But as I think about it, what I'd put on this wish list is a vid to music Yuri himself would listen to. Because I'd like to know what his music would be. Or fic that knows where he grew up, that can help me to feel and see his hometown, his background, conversation around the dinner table, and what it's like for Victor to spend time with him there.

Also anything at all about Karim and Raheen from Kamila Shamsie's Kartography, because I love the book so — because of their deep connection, the kind of intimacy that shares thoughts and grows over years, and their curiosity and laughter, and the ways they play games with the world, play with words, find magic in street names and histories and in the back garden just by being awake to it. Because they begin the book by finding a mummified cuttlefish. Because I want to walk around Karachi with them and just listen to them talk.

And third ... sometimes I write song lyrics, because sometimes stories come that way, and if anyone wanted to, I'd love to have music for them, especially for Turn Around. (It's a Check Please tribute in Bitty's voice.)
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2017-01-05 05:00 pm

Sharing stories

All right, I already owe the Snowflake challenge for making me think and introducing me to generous and friendly people ... but today it's even better. They say, In your own space, post recs for at least three fanworks that you did not create.

And they brought me back to a story I've loved for years. For Yuletide 2008, Dhobi ki Kutti wrote and gave me One Thousand and One and Counting — and I remember reading it for the first time, dumbstruck that someone could have written something so beautiful for me. The prompt was The Thousand and One Nights, and this is a contemporary sea of stories. These are women telling stories to stay alive, and each story builds and crests and runs into the next.

"Keep talking."

The gun dangling casually from the American solder's hand is bulkier than the handguns she has seen close up, being snuck from palm to palm. He has a bar of some foodstuff in his other hand, the carelessly torn wrapper glinting in the sun. He wears sunglasses so dark she cannot see his eyes, even though he is standing only a foot away from her. The hair on his knuckles is golden.

This story has stayed with me over the years, and I re-read it this morning with deep and renewed thanks. Kass, if you haven't read it yet, I think you would understand why I love it, and why I need to share it now.

*

And as I think of that, do you know the first Yuletide story I ever read? Kass's Petition— a marvelously funny, unexpectedly sad and gentle tribute to The Rabbi's Cat. I haven't read the source, but you don't need to know it to fall into this story (any more than you need to have read the Thousand and One Nights to love Dhibi ki Kutti's storytelling). The Rabbi's cat has learned to talk, and he wants to study Kabbalah. And the results are comic, wry and life-and-death from any perspective. But the cat tells this story.

If I had imagined even for a moment that eating that parrot would grace me with the ability to speak, I would have done it years ago. I never liked the parrot.

Perhaps to one of its own kind, its noisy cries would have made some kind of sense. But not to us. It annoyed Zlabya, and even more, it annoyed me. The day I ate the parrot was the start of a new life. My own private new year. A day for rejoicing!

*

And for a glorious romp I've rediscovered today — Yule Morning, or Malvolio's Revenge, Ellen Fremedon's masterful sequel to Twelfth Night — fencing, fighting, torture, revenge, true love, miracles! Sir Toby loses the family jewels, Cesario learns to draw a blade ... and Sebastian and Antonio check mate the queen. In iambic pentameter.

I was alone, except for you. No coin
Had I except your purse; no compass but
Your knowledge of our road; no family,
Or so I thought; and in all of the world,
No friend or ally save Antonio,
Who ev'ry moment risk'd his neck for me. ...

I am in awe. 
 
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2017-01-04 05:57 pm

Thankfulnesses

It's a quiet winter day, a trace of thaw before the next storm. It's supposed to be snowing now, but the temperature is the age I've just become. It will be colder before morning.

I'm at the end of a holiday break after a rare week with family and friends. My sister and brother-in-law live across the country, and my brother and about-to-be-sister-in-law live halfway across, so having all of us together takes thought. And they are close friends. We are. We had some quiet time over Christmas and the early nights of Hanukkah, making cookies and lighting candles. My oldest friend and his wife gave us a vid made with 10 years of photos of us all. And then we headed to the farm, and two old family friends and my brother's fiancée's family came up to meet us. So we had a houseful of board games and a fire in the fireplace. I introduced Oracle ... which told us, among other things, that the Swedish Chef can take any three superheroes out there, including the Hulk. With flying lettuce and a blunderbuss.

When I got back, the annual New Years Tribecon was in full swing, with more old friends and games and conversations about the properties of funghi (which evolved before animal or plant life and can eat rock — there's something alive in here.)

And this is a quiet time in a quiet month. I've taken a couple of quiet days to settle in and re-read Rainbow Rowell's Carry On (one of my new gifts, a request because I finally read a library copy this fall and fell into it headlong.) Sanj introduced me to Yuri on Ice, and we watched the whole short, beautiful season. Kouredios, I think I owe you for telling us about it? It's breath-stopping, warm, the rare kind of love story that feels real.

The podcast I've been working on has gone live, and deadlines are easy so soon after the holidays, and in winter. I'm looking forward to a few weeks of quieter time, and to writing more fiction before the journalism catches me up again.

And I'm 39. This morning I opened an email from my sister, and she had written me a birthday poem. It's the first time anyone has written a poem for me. It made me cry, in the best way. And my brother has saved up enough frequent flyer miles so I can visit him. This year may bring plenty I can't predict, for better and for worse, but my people — all of you I am so thankful for.


taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2017-01-04 12:08 pm

From snowflakes to giraffes

So today's Snowflake challenge has led me to this — a friending meme from St. Aurafina. And I'm thankful to find it.



DW username: Taabe
Preferred pronouns: She / her
Other platforms (please specify): A03 (also LJ under a different name)
Active/primary interests or fandoms: Fandoms range from Check Please and YOI to Barbara Hambly, Haroun and the Sea of Stories and the Thousand and One Nights. Dorothy Sayers, Kamila Shamsie, Rainbow Rowell ... Often small and most often books. I write for a living, and stories matter.
If you've seen me around, it's probably because: I've written for Yuletide off and on for about 10 years
I post about: Here, about stories I'm reading or writing, contradance music, small mountains, friends and family, puttering in the kitchen, life events
I post/check my feed: Depending on the season (and deadlines), it varies from weekly to a few times a month
I want to find people that post about: Books, writing ... I'd love to know more about more writers from more parts of the world, for one.
I am most interested in interacting with people on: DW for anything like this
My blog is: Sometimes public but often friends only
Anything else you need to know about me: I love fandoms and stories where people really talk and work their way through tough times — where they have the hard conversations and trust each other and face their dragons together — and they're rare.
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2017-01-03 08:39 pm

Snowflake Challenge Day 3

Today's Snowflake challenge: In your own space, set some goals for the coming year. They can be fannish or not, public or private.

Thinking about that, I started with — I want to keep what I have. What I've put together over the last year. This time next year, I want to be earning a living by writing what I want to write, and living in a place I love, and talking with friends and family.

And then I thought, there's more to it.

This year I want to meet people who will matter to me and teach me.

I want to stretch. I've spent the last year rebuilding structures I'd lost, in new ways, but on comfortable ground. 

Remember the kind of confidence that goes with conversations at all hours, new ideas running like sap, trying for something just within reach and sticking the landing, falling and getting up again, and sharing that high with people who understand how it feels?  

I want to talk with people who will make me think and challenge me. Looking for a mind at work.

I want not to be afraid to tell people who I am and what I do. And to learn to do it well. (Sales isn't my strength, but I need to learn.)

I want to write something that intimidates me and feel that it's good. 

Do you find it hard to start a sentence with I want? I do. I can tell myself I want to l love. I want to write. I want to talk, even to people who intimidate me. Especially to people who intimidate me. I want to hike the highest peak in the state. But saying it out loud? I want to thank this challenge for giving me a prompt. 


Fandom Snowflake Challenge banner
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2017-01-03 04:46 pm

Snowflake Challege #2

More from the Snowflake Challenge ... In your own space, share a book/song/movie/tv show/fanwork/etc that changed your life. Something that impacted on your consciousness in a way that left its mark on your soul. Leave a comment in this post saying you did it. Include a link to your post if you feel comfortable doing so.

Usually Dorothy Sayers' Gaudy Night wins this this kind of question, but I've been thinking about it in the last day or two. A book that changed the way I think, and that I come back to ... there are many of them. But right now, I'm thinking about Toni Morrison's Playing in the Dark.  She writes a beautiful series of essays about the way several white writers write about characters of color. I remember her general comment on almost any story by a white American — you know all the characters are white because no one says so.

And I thought, she's right. A character shows up, even with a name like Scout or Ishmael, and all I know is that she wears overalls or he's on his way to New Bedford to share a tavern bed with an Ocean Islander, and I immediately see them both as European-American. Sometimes I may be absorbing ideas from a the time and place, the character's background or clothing or voice or job. But a lot of the time I'm on automatic. I've never thought of that before. And it's so obvious. It's an assumption, and it's so deeply ingrained I never knew I was making it. 

She made me think. And kept making me think. And I've tried to hold in mind what I learned from her, when I write. Because she shows brilliant writers limited by their own assumptions — she shows weaknesses they have given their characters without knowing it, and those weaknesses are their own. And I want any character I write to be strong and human and alive. 

And her writing is beautiful. There are lines in Beloved that come back to me years later. Beautiful and aching, angry or gentle, vivid. Joe D's loving tribute at the end. It's good to have a woman who's a friend of your mind.
taabe: Two monks embracing (Monks)
2017-01-03 04:40 pm

Snowflake Challenge Day 1

Following Kass's lead, because it's a quiet, snowy day ... I'm taking a look at the Snowflake Challenge.

Day 1: In your own space, post a rec for at least three fanworks that you have created. It can be your favorite fanworks that you've created, or fanworks you feel no one ever saw, or fanworks you say would define you as a creator. Leave a comment in this post saying you did it. Include a link to your post if you feel comfortable doing so.


Lauds begins at the end of Umberto Eco's "The Name of the Rose" — it's the first fanwork I wrote for Yuletide and almost the first fanfic I wrote (on paper. Like everyone else, I've been writing them in my head as long as I can remember.) And it's one of the few I've written that I know struck a chord with people.

(ETA: More clearly, it's one of the few stories I've written that seemed to strike a chord with a group of people. Most of the Yuletide stories I've written were for small fandoms, so they had small audiences, and that's wonderful all on its own. There's nothing better than feeling that someone I've written a story for takes it as a gift.)

"In which Waldo of Hereford and Rabano of Toledo fight fire, find shelter at the onset of winter, and revolt at the end of their illuminations, and truth learns to laugh at last.

We stayed close when the library burned. For three days we watched it from a lower shoulder of the mountain while the walls cracked and the embers recaught and died, and the snow fell over the golden sandstone crags and made no difference. ..."


Rasa is a crossover: Deeba Resham from Un Lun Dun and Haroun from the Sea of Stories. In Un Lun Dun, a city has a kind of shadow, a mirror, an abcity, made out of elements lost on the press of people and things, so there's an UnLondon. But what happens when an abcity's adcity is destroyed? I loved writing these two bright, brave people, and it warmed me that a couple of readers who know their worlds, I think, seemed to think I was on the right track.

They are saying you went into the place where morning lies, said the voice from nowhere.
"You know what they're saying? You speak Encordoban?"
But but but certainly, the voice sang in her head. All translations that matter, and all matter that translates! I always travel in cognato! They are speaking medieval Arabic and Spanish with a gilding of Sephardic Hebrew. No problem!
"So what's the big deal?
I think, said the voice, the big deal is the water.


Programming in C++ is in Welcome to Nightvale. When the City Council makes a move against Carlos, Cecil comes out to warn him. But why are they after him — who sent the computer virus to gum up his equipment — and why has a helicopter joined in the chase? I loved writing this story, partly because I've spent time in newsrooms (and a little in radio stations), and Cecil's world moves me. Also because I wanted to challenge some elements of it. Where the news comes from, and how to protect sources and interns. How a radio station survives in a police state that even outlaws pencils. Who Carlos and Old Woman Josie and Black Angel are, and who they love. 
 
"He is sitting cross-legged on the packed earth at the edge of the shadow of the rock wall. The morning light rests on his bare shoulders. He is sitting still and shirtless, with his back straight and his eyes closed, as though he has been waiting there to feel the sunlight move across him. And I’m standing in the doorway watching the air stir the hair on the back of his neck."
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2014-12-26 12:15 pm

Thank you, Yulewriter!

I have the loveliest parable written for me, from the world of George MacDonald's "The Day Boy and the Night Girl," itself a beautiful story of gardens in the moonlight, fields in the sunlight and discovering courage. Here the hero and heroine, who have set out into the unknown at the end of MacDonald's story, come to Cordoba, to the city of libraries, and face fears of another kind …

Books on the one hand and meadow flowers on the other … Yulewiter, you couldn't have known me better. Thanks so much!
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2014-10-22 11:51 pm

Dear Yulewriter, thank you!

Dear Yulewriter,

Thank you for joining me in the warm fellowship that is Yuletide! Knowing you're writing a story to share with me while I'm playing with ideas for someone else warms me on fall evenings. Yuletide has become, for me, a way to explore new worlds. I've been known to offer (and end up writing in) fandoms I didn't know yet but wanted to. I've loved learning about sources I already love set in places I haven't been to, and finding new depths in people in sources I love. Open-mindedness turns me on, and curiosity, and people alive to what they see and hear and feel and touch. Courage and communication and the kind of love that can last through tough places. I've especially loved finding worlds and people new to me. )
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2014-10-02 09:06 pm

Gratitudes

Kass's warm and lovely post, which reminds me to reflect.

A purring fuzzy cat sharing my chair.

A weekend with family and my oldest friend and his fiancee. I got to talk more with her this time (we'd mostly met in large groups so far, and she's a medical fellow, so when she gets to a quiet place in the country she's usually sleepy, which I wholly understand. My sister's in the same crazy race.) I already knew I like her hugely and respect her, but we'd never had a chance before to watch bats at dusk and walk around the barns and sit on the back steps and talk. She's amazing. They cooked salmon for us for dinner, too, and my dad made corn pudding with corn we'd frozen and a salad out of the last of the garden. 

A day spent driving through the mountains from mist to sun, with the trees almost translucent in crimson and lemon and flame and ember-orange. This time of year, driving is almost dangerous — it's so hard to keep my eyes on the road.

An hour to explore a town I knew only in glimpses, and an Italian market with olive oil labelled entirely in Italian — and sandwiches with red peppers and artichokes.

Conversations with co-workers I value, and one who said he had learned a lot from working with me. (Man, I wish he wasn't leaving. But he'll do well where he's headed, and that's a gratitude too.)

An hour at a local arts center, mostly in a solo show of paintings versed in country things — Ayrshires and Holsteins in hazy midsummer pasture, a corn chopper, fields of half-melted snow in March glowing in late light, sun on the river. The curators knew and loved him, and the show is a retrospective in his memory, with letters from his friends. They say he used to live and work above a garage on a back road with his dog and a radio tuned to the BBC, bathe in the stream, quote Yates and Keats and French philosophers casually. I wish I'd known him.

Coffee with a former intern who has just moved back here from the city and is much happier.

Stretching myself to be social online in ways slightly beyond comfort (pat on the back).

Roast chicken in the oven. Upside down. Can you turn over a chicken like turning around the bread pans, so both sides cook evenly?

taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2014-08-30 06:25 pm

Thank God for long weekends

Three days without travel — three days to read and clean house and knead bread and not have to be anywhere or think anything unless I choose to? Heaven. This is always the part of the year when I start to crash and don't really have time to yet. The busy season eases just a hair, I start watching the leaves and wondering how much of a fall we're going to have, and the leaves get that light-edged, faintly golden sense of dryness. I got to have lunch with Sanj today, and there are red peppers in my farm share. Life is good. Kass brought up a set of questions recently, and in the spirit of having time to think ...
Here are answers )
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2013-12-01 10:08 pm

Thanks and sorrows

It has been a hard week, and a quiet week, and a week full of people to hold onto and wood fires from the logs my dad split by hand this summer.

I'm thankful that I'm sitting at home on a Sunday night with time to write to you all. And I'm thankful that I'm feeling well enough to have just eaten a cookie (nothing like a persistent cold to make you realize what you take for granted.) And I'm overwhelmingly thankful to have spent this weekend with family and family friends, two of my oldest friends and their partners and a remarkably eloquent two-year-old who knows about volcanoes ... and for goats to rub on the forehead and horses to eat my parka and fancy chickens to parade around the pot-bellied pig.

I'm thankful to have talked with my sister on the phone on Thursday, and to know that she and her partner were hiking near Carmel with a friend of his, and warm and well-fed and comforted on the holiday.

I'm thankful to have seen my brother last weekend unexpectedly and listened to him playing Greensleeves and Fur Elise on the piano. I'm more thankful than I can tell you to have made it to the farm last weekend, to see Tante, my grandmother by bonds if not by blood, one last time.

I'm thankful beyond words for the kindness of people at work who took over for me on Tuesday, when my parents called to tell me that she was gone.

My editors sent me home early, and told me not even to come in the next day. So I reached the farm early, to comfort my parents and make pumpkin pies with my mother, out of pumpkin puree she had frozen. And on Tuesday night I wrote a column for Tante. As hard as this is, I am thankful too, inexpressibly thankful, that I've had her to love for 35 years.

How do you describe laughter? )
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2012-11-07 01:13 am

Hallelujah!

I'm so relieved, I'm light-headed. I've spent election night in the newsroom ... collecting a holiday calendar for a special section, because we had extra hands on the night desk, and they didn't need me. I've been here since 11 a.m., because the best way to get through today, after voting, seemed to be to come in and chip away at something useful.

But in fact, at the exact moment the newsroom found out Obama had won the election, I was sitting on the first floor, looking through a glass window at the printing press and talking with a friend. Call it a dinner break; I paused to make a quick phone call and make sure my oldest friend, who lives in New York, isn't under water. And I learned the news first from him. When I walked into the newsroom, just as the official word was coming on screen, everyone was quiet.

I think, like me, the whole room was dizzy with relief and snapped tension. So they went quietly on pasting the right headlines into the spaces they had left open, and my intern-turned-man-of-all-work told me about a series of articles he wants to write about local immigration. And I'm still here, and so thankful. Now I can go home and sleep.
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2012-02-25 10:33 am

Warm thoughts for a blustery morning

It's Saturday, and I have time to be tired. In a few minutes I'm heading to the farm, and we have kid goats due any time now. A morning that begins with hot water and poetry, Terry Pratchett on tape and almonds and raspberries has a lot to be said for it.

Wishing all of you restful weekends.

On Sunday night at 8, I'll be reading poetry at Y Bar in the 10 x 10 Festival. One of my co-workers, one of the kindest people I know (and she makes good apple sauce too) sent out an invivation to the whole newsroom. So I'm looking through peoms from the last few years. Many of them I wrote for one of you. If it's ok with you, I may read some of them.

Please take care.
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2012-02-10 12:54 pm

Thanks, however late

Some of you know this, because I told people delightedly about it at New Years — this story was so good, I had to share it at soon as I read it with whoever I ran into — but I'm very late in posting it here. Since I missed New Year's, here it is for Valentine's Day: Galaxysoup wrote me the loveliest Yuletide story, a Haroun and the Sea of Stories prequel about Mudra the shadow warrior as a child. It's called "Parable," and you don't need to know Haroun to love it.

What if librarians risked their lives?

Thank you!

And thanks, dizzy_fire, for giving me 14th century Pagan Lithuania as a world to play with! I wrote At the Spring.
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2011-01-25 08:50 pm

He gathered his hardihood close about him

He's called the small, dark man. He's an Irishman out of Glen Glounagrianaan, a school teacher who can sing a come-all-ye and wrap a bandage and tickle a trout out of a stream for breakfast. And he's in my thoughts at the moment.

His name is Aodh McFirbis, Hugh Forbes. If you've met him, I'll be delighted and surprised — because he's the soul of a novel written in 1929, and I only know Maurice Walsh from the hard-back books my parents stumbled on in a used bookstore decades ago. My town library gets tremendous points for having a couple of his short story collections and a film based on one with Maureen O'Hara.

I read and loved The Small Dark Man in high school. It's been more than ten years, and I borrowed it last time I was home. I didn't know until I opened it how much Aodh reminds me of another small, dark man. They both had a gift for conversation, and they both lived solitary. They both had a bedrock resilience, brashness over philosophy, fine vintage non-sequiturs and a nose for whisky. They were both, in Walsh's words, men you could be frank with.

On heather, whiskey and damned stubborn whole men )

I still don't know why that moves me the way it does. But what gets me is that Aodh does what he has to. He does the work he has to do. He may get it wrong, he may hurt himself, but he doesn't walk away. The book most often calls him resourceful. His resources are not always extensive — a kettle, a handkercheif, cheese and crackers — but they fit the need, because he is willing to see what the need really is and then to do what he can. And sometimes, the need is only that, for someone who will sit quietly and look at what the need really is.

I grew up learning by example how far doing the work can take you, and what a rush it can give. Like climbing up Ragged Mountain to sit on the rock at the summit under the scrub pine, gulping water out of my leaking thermos and looking for a view through the trees.
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2011-01-10 08:23 pm

C.S.M.D.

Carter Stilson, Medical Doctor. My grandfather, my mother's father, who taught me everything I know about boats and maple syrup and almost everything I know about talking to people, who healed families in the city where he was born for 50 years, who built a hexagonal cabin in Maine, who showed me my brother on the day my brother was born, who brought antique barometers into the lab in his med school days to replace the mercury, who brought me to flea markets and teased me for saying actually at the start of every sentence and said it himself, who spent his holidays touring sardine factories and sailing with fishermen at 3 a.m., who brought us Chinese food while he was on call and took phone calls from worried parents — have you taken his temp? You haven't taken his temp? Then take it and call me back. His temp is over 100? Call me again in 20 minutes. — my grandfather, who lived all his life within two square miles, who talked schooner captains into giving him rides out of the harbor when wooden ships still traded on the Connecticut coast, who wore bow ties and gave his patients pretzels — my grandfather, who told me at Thanksgiving how Einstein successfully defended his theory of relativity from attack just as he was given the nobel prize — my grandfather, who came out for Christmas so my dad could feed him a waffle my mom made, one bite at a time —

my grandfather died on Friday, January 7. And I was half an hour too late to say goodbye.

I'll write more soon, but not yet. I don't know yet how to put into words how much I miss him.
Be well everyone, please.
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2011-01-07 08:26 am

Yuletide thanks

I owe a lot of thanks, and I am late in offering it; things have gotten uexpectedly difficult this week, but I have been thinking the thanks I'm now writing since the holidays.

Sandpipersummer, Land of Light
— snow in the darkness, crossroads, lantern light, pastries hot out of the oven — holds all the grit and quiet going-out-into-the-storm and friendship and care that I think of as part of this time of the year. I read it just as I was finishing The Dark Is Rising again, and it has become part of the story for me. Thanks so much.

And [personal profile] nextian, thank you for requesting Deeba Resham and Un Lun Dun fic, and giving me a chance to play with it! I wrote Rasa, in which Deeba meets Haroun from the Sea of Stories in the fading city of Encordoba (and Abd al Rahman, named for the first Caliph of the Umayyads, and Dinah, Amram's missing daughter from Gentlemen of the Road, and a large, furry, damp and obstinate Quorum...)

Best of the new year to you all!
taabe: Tipsy sylph with a cat on her shoulder (Default)
2010-11-22 01:53 pm

Dear Yulewriter, continued

Thank you!

I've already written you to shake hands and turn sommersaults and say how glad I am that we're in this together, hundreds of us trekking into the corners of stories. Now that assignments have gone out, let me say it again. Thank you for setting off into worlds I also like to walk in.

About the story, write what moves you, and let the people taste and see and get muddy and know who and where they are. This time of year, for me, is about fire on cold nights, coming in tired and sweating after a long trip to see family, rubbing down your donkey before you go in to dinner... about risk and raw weather and stripped-down talk. It can have magic in it.

I hope my requests will give you ground to stand on and ideas to play with. Let me tell you a litte more about each one, if only for the fun of it.


12th Century )

Deborah )

All the Old Ones )

19th Century )

Be well!