04 October 2016 @ 11:08 pm
Dear Yuletide author  
Dear Author, let me thank you right up front for the story you are going to write. Although you've seen the requests on my sign-up, I know that many people like a bit more to go on than just the prompt. If so, I hope this letter will prove helpful. All these fandoms are dear to my heart. Whatever you write, I'm sure I will love it!



General Guidelines:

As far as general guidelines are concerned, I seem to say pretty much the same thing for every gift exchange. (Which makes sense, I guess.)

What I Like:
  • I love worldbuilding and character pieces—stories that explore more deeply—through backstory, or by elaborating the setting/history/culture or exploring people's motivations and personal interactions.

  • 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 love casefic; and, more generally, I like plotty stories that are canon-compliant.

  • 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 (except for unnamed victims of crimes/vampires/etc.); but references to canonical deaths are okay.

  • A sense of humour and being able to recognize the ridiculous when it pops up; also wit and wordplay, if the story calls for them. (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.)



What I Dislike:
  • Blatant Americanisms uttered by British characters (unless they're aware of what they're doing, which is another matter entirely).

  • Explicit sex, especially if long and detailed. No objection to hints, but I'm not into plumbing.



My Requests:

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.

Edited to add: 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 the Cabinet Secretary, as long as they're talking (among other things) about a situation involving Hacker.

Availability: A number of episodes are available on YouTube.


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.

Availability: YouTube.


Forever Knight:
Characters: Any.
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 don't feel that you have to ignore canon. (Nothing more than PG13, though, please.) I'm not interested in AUs or crossovers. However, feel free to ignore "Last Knight" if you want.
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 about all we know of Captain Reese's family is his wife's name. Or, if you fancy focusing on a character who was not nominated, I'd be fine with a story from the p.o.v. of one of the other police captains or Natalie's assistant, Grace.

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? Or you might prefer to write about their lives 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.

Basically, I'm pretty easy on what you write, though my preference is for gen. (If romance does sneak in, please stick to a PG-13 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.


The Charioteer - Mary Renault:
Characters: Any.
Quite a lot of fan fiction focuses on the canonical romances; so I'd prefer a story that's a bit different. Perhaps a school story not involving Ralph/Hazell: e.g. Ralph or Laurie with their friends/study mates? Or maybe 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, 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.

On the whole (see letter), I prefer canon-compliant stories that are gen or character-driven mild romance. Nothing more than PG13, please.
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.
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