greerwatson (greerwatson) wrote,

Dear Yuletide Author

greerwatson on AO3.

First, let me thank you for writing me a story in one of the fandoms we share. I'm excited about all of them. They're listed in alphabetical order, so as not to play favourites.


  • I love stories that explore canon more deeply, whether through backstory, or elaborating the setting/history/culture, or exploring people's motivations and personal interactions.

  • I prefer gen. DNW non-canon relationships unless requested. I'm not asking you to ignore canon relationships; but please don't make them the focus of the story. I don't care for anything more than PG-13: explicit sexual detail is definitely a DNW for me.

  • I love casefic; and, more generally, I like stories that are canon-compliant. The general exception to this is ignoring canonical character death if you want. Canon-divergent AUs are also okay. (There may be other specific exceptions.)

  • I'm okay with violence if necessary to the story; but not gore for the sake of gore. On the whole, I prefer not to have characters die in the story; but references to canonical deaths are okay. (I'm fine with having original characters murdered in casefic, and that sort of thing.)

  • I enjoy comedy—being able to recognize the ridiculous when it pops up; also wit and wordplay. Having said that, I totally leave it up to you whether you write a serious or comic story—or a serious story with comic interludes.

  • No second-person fic, please. First person is definitely okay for book canons that were written that way by the author. However, I don't generally care for it with TV fandoms. Epistolary fic is fine.


The Charioteer - Mary Renault (any nominated characters)
Quite a lot of fan fiction focuses on the canonical romances; so I'd prefer a story that's a bit different. Perhaps a gen school story or other backstory? Or war-time futurefic: e.g. Ralph's future in the Navy, Laurie after he's mustered out; life for the Straikes &/or Aunt Olive during the war; Andrew with the Friends Ambulance Corps; Alec or Sandy as army doctors (or any combination thereof)? Other possibilities: an insider's view of the Bridstow scene, Bunny getting his comeuppance (or Bunny's p.o.v.), a slice-of-life at the E.M.S. hospital; Ralph in a P.o.W. camp. Feel free to include other characters besides those nominated.

I prefer canon-compliant stories that are either gen or character-driven mild romance combined with plot. However, I don't like anything more than PG13: explicit sexual detail is definitely a DNW for me. I prefer not to have characters die in the story; but references to canonical deaths are okay. DNW second person fic.
The Charioteer is the last contemporary book written by Mary Renault before she shifted to writing historicals. What do I like about it? Well, it was one of the first stories I ever read that had explicitly gay characters in it, let alone a gay hero. The characters are eternally fascinating. In addition, it's set in Britain during World War II, which makes it an intriguing period piece.

The prompts I listed in the sign-up are only suggestions: I'm not wedded to any of them. If none hits the spot, then write me something different. On the whole, though, I'd prefer a story that is more-or-less gen—though that depends, of course, on what characters are included during which period in their lives. I certainly don't want canon ignored; it's more a question of focus. Backstory, missing scene, an exploration of characters often overlooked....

Total longshot (which I only mention since I know a lot of Renault fans are also into World War II history): Sandy Reid shares a surname with Pat Reid, who was Escape Officer at Colditz. This is obvious crossover material. (Cousins, maybe?)

I'd prefer something canon-compliant. Futurefic is okay; but I'd rather not have an AU.

Availability: The preferred edition is always the 1953 Longman (or its 1973 reprint); but the paperback is a lot more available, being in print. Also, Renault's books are found in most libraries.

There's a DW community, [community profile] renaultx, that is devoted to Mary Renault's novels. That might be a good place to find a beta.

Forever Knight (any nominated characters)
Casefic is always a treat; and I enjoy ensemble stories, both in terms of the interplay back at the station and also the detective story plots. If you prefer to focus on an individual, perhaps family/personal life/backstory (for police characters), or history/backstory (for the vampires, whether Nick's "family" or Vachon's crew). By all means include characters who weren't nominated if you want. I like all three seasons equally.

I prefer gen; but I'm not asking you to ignore canon relationships. However, I don't like anything more than PG-13: explicit sexual detail is definitely a DNW for me. I prefer not to have canon characters die in the story; but references to canonical deaths are okay. I'm not interested in AUs or crossovers. However, feel free to ignore "Last Knight" if you want. DNW first- or second-person fic.
If you've never heard of Forever Knight, it's a '90s TV series whose hero is a homicide detective on the Toronto police force who was turned into a vampire in 1228.

I prefer stories with a modern setting to focus on Nick as a detective, with vampires on the side, so to speak. I love the cop aspect of the series, both the interplay back at the station, and also the detective story plots. I like both Tracy and Schanke as Nick's partner, all the captains, and Natalie's role as pathologist. Of course, you may prefer to explore one or more specific characters. Both Tracy's and Schanke's families are familiar from hints, but largely unseen. Natalie's family is only slightly better explored; and we know little about the family life of any of the police captains.

You might, on the other hand, prefer to write something with an historical focus. LaCroix in the Dark Ages, before he brought the others across? Nick's years as a crusader? Janette managing on her own (since they did not always travel together as a family)? Yet another of Nick's attempts at a mortal career? Or any combination of them during an actual period of history, whether war or peace? There has been much speculation about LaCroix's motives in bringing Nick across: was it purely for Janette's sake, or also his own? I enjoy historical fiction, whether as the main focus of the story or as a flashback.

And then there are the vampires introduced in Season Three. The series only told their "origin stories": much remains unknown. What was Vachon's life as a conquistador, or shortly after he was brought across? How did he get together with Screed (or any other member of his crew)? What was it like for Screed as a carouche among vampires who prefer human blood? Indeed, what's it like being a carouche? And then there's Urs: what was her life like, say, during the flapper era, World War 2, or the Sixties? Or you might prefer to write about the lives of these characters since coming to Toronto—whether on their own, or as affected by Vachon's friendship with Tracy, their acquaintance with Nick, or events at the Raven.

Regarding one particular nominated vampire character: I'm a keen gardener, so I've a soft spot for Feliks Twist, even though I do my planting outdoors and he, being a vampire, has to use grow lights.

Basically, I'm pretty easy on what you write, though my preference is for gen. (If romance does sneak in, please stick to a PG13 rating at most.) Any other characters you want to include would be fine. I'd prefer something canon-compliant, but do feel free to ignore "Last Knight" if you want.

Availability: Most of the series is available on DVD, and some episodes are on YouTube. There's a Forever Knight wiki, if you just want to check details.

Hellspark - Janet Kagan (any nominated characters)
I love this book for Lassti, linguistics, the cast (especially Maggy!), and the detective plot. So as much of that as you can get into the story the better. A missing scene? Something aboard ship? A new case for the new judge? Or, if you like, something about the survey team after Tocohl leaves Lassti, particularly Buntec and Edge-of-Dark's dawning friendship (flowers and food!). I love all the characters, including those who weren't nominated; so please feel free to include any of them.

Canon-compliant gen, please. DNW anything more than PG13. I prefer not to have canon characters die in the story; but references to canonical deaths are okay. DNW first- or second-person fic.
If you don't know Hellspark, it's set in a far-future where humanity has spread out over many federated planets, each of which has evolved its own cultures and language. The "science" in the SF is Linguistics: the heroine comes from a polyglot people who serve as translators, traders, and judges. When murder is committed among a team of scientists evaluating a newly discovered planet, she is called in to investigate—not just to find the killer, but to determine whether the native species is sentient.

Suggestions, suggestions....

Well, I don't think it's reasonable to ask you to write a sequel. I'd love a sequel, of course; and it's not as though people have never written novels for gift exchanges. (I did myself once. Nearly killed me.) However, it's not really a practical request. *g*

I love casefic. Some other mystery for now-Byworld Judge Tocohl Susumo to tackle would be a joy. We saw one other world in some detail, at the beginning of the novel, so—if perchance some other year she were back there and some crime were committed—perhaps she might be enlisted to solve it. If you want something less plotty, I'd love a missing scene, either on board ship or on Lassti.

The survey team still have much to do after the end of the story. Buntec and Edge-of-Dark are always fun. I particularly enjoyed the flowers & food theme they have going, and the way their original antagonism shifts toward friendship. However, do feel free to use any or all of the other characters if you want: the other survey members, Tocohl's mother, sprookjes.... Any of the characters, in fact. They all have their charms.

Really, anything would be wonderful.

Availability: link

New Tricks (Characters: Brian Lane, Esther Lane)
I'd like a story about the Lanes. I'm not interested in romance/smut, but in the sort of thing we saw on the show. Their love for each other is obvious, but understated (and often enough unstated). They've been married for many years, had their ups and downs, and know each other's idiosyncrasies by heart. I'm open as to time period—during any season of the series, or backstory, or futurefic after Brian finally leaves UCOS. (Do they really turn private detective?) Feel free to use other characters from the show if you want. Including a current UCOS case is fine as long as the main focus is on Brian/Esther.

I don't like anything more than PG13: explicit sexual detail is definitely a DNW for me. I prefer not to have characters die in the story; but references to canonical deaths are okay. DNW AUs or crossovers. DNW second person fic.
In some ways New Tricks went on just a bit too long: by the end, the original cast had been pretty well all replaced; and, although it was done gradually enough to be palatable at first, the dynamic inevitably shifted. I don't think I'm alone in missing Sandra, Gerry, Jack, and Brian.

When we lost Brian, we also lost Esther; and the relationship between them was a delight. I'd like to see more. How you do this, though, is up to you. Go back to the days when they were young activists, or when Brian's drinking nearly cost him his family? Go forward, after he leaves UCOS, for another glimpse of their not-so-retirement? Or another scene, like so many in the show, when he's home: their evenings together, maybe a case complicating things, or something about their very different hobbies.

I guess what I'm asking for is a character piece. (They are both such characters!)

If you matched with me on this, it's possible that you were thinking of writing casefic; so let me say that I'm okay with that being part of the story provided the Lanes' home life plays an important role as well.

Availability: Some episodes are on line.

Tiger Bay (1959) (Characters: Gillie Evans, Bronislav Korchinsky, Superintendent Graham)
What happens next? This could mean the immediate aftermath, as Graham takes Korchinsky to the police station, or it could relate to the period leading up to the trial, or a scene from the trial itself. Alternatively, what are people's reactions to what Gillie did? How does her life go on afterwards, with her aunt, the choir, school, and/or friends. Or perhaps something about Korchinsky in jail.

It's not necessary for all three characters to appear in the story. However, I would prefer that the story references all of them, even if they're off scene. Canon-compliant, please.

DNW anything more than PG13, please. DNW any of the characters paired with each other.
I first saw this movie years ago; and, each time I've seen it since then, I've found it very satisfying. Hayley Mills was only twelve or so at the time of filming; but she was marvellously talented, and made Gillie a most compelling character. An imp—bordering on the delinquent, wanting forbidden adventure denied her for so many reasons (age, sex, background). Then there is the strained bond between her and "Bronis"—a wanted killer, though not quite a murderer, for whom one has enormous sympathy. And the third side of the triangle: Supt. Graham, who interrogates Gillie in his hunt for Korchinsky, and comes to respect both.

In one sense, the movie has a satisfactory ending—as far as its plot is concerned, that is. From a fannish perspective, it more than invites speculation, it flat out demands it.

Availability: YouTube.

Yes Minister
(Characters: Sir Humphrey Appleby, Jim Hacker, Bernard Woolley)
I'd like something similar to the series, whether it's a tale of mutual political intrigue or just a scene in Hacker's office involving all three of them. I particularly love the repartee as Sir Humphrey and the Minister manoeuvre for advantage, with Bernard in the middle. If you prefer, I'm fine with a story based on Yes Prime Minister instead.

DNW anything more than PG13, please. DNW any pairing involving these characters.

I've been told that there was a sequel to the original series, also called
Yes Minister, which aired in 2013. I've not seen it; and it's apparently got differences in setting/characterization. I want the original Yes Minister (or Yes Prime Minister) from the 1980s, please. I do not want you to write about the 2013 series.
I love how Sir Humphrey tries to foil Hacker's attempts at reform (and how occasionally the tables are turned), with Bernard trapped between them. I particularly enjoy the repartee. So what I'd like is another tale of mutual political intrigue; or at least a scene in Hacker's office involving all three of them.

If you want to use characters who were not nominated, that's fine, as long as the situation involves the Minister, even if he's off-scene. For instance, I'd be fine with a scene focusing on Sir Humphrey and one of his colleagues, such as Arnold Robinson, as long as they're talking (among other things) about a situation involving Hacker.

Availability: A number of episodes are available on YouTube. This entry was originally posted at Please comment there using OpenID.
Tags: yuletide

  • Yuletide nominations - 2020

    I've just put in my nominations for the yuletide gift exchange: Forever Knight, Mary Renault's The Charioteer, and the old British comedy cop…

  • Dear Yuletide Author

    greerwatson on AO3. First, let me thank you for writing me a story in one of the fandoms we share. I'm excited about all of them. They're listed in…

  • My Yuletide nominations

    UPDATE I have nominated Forever Knight with the following characters: - Nick Knight - Lucien LaCroix - Don Schanke - Javier Vachon One is…

  • Post a new comment


    default userpic
    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.