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ningloreth [userpic]

My favourite stories (of my own)

March 13th, 2007 (10:47 am)

I've been tagged by both nebride and capella_fic (which is really wonderful because they jointly inspired me to start writing fan fiction in the first place :-)

WRITER'S MEME: Sometimes it's ok to pimp yourself out. Post a list of the top five favorite fics you've written, regardless of fandom or the reason you love them. This isn't about the BEST things you've written, but what you LOVE most. Then tag five other people to do the same.

Of my own stories, my five favourites, in order of preference, are:

  1. The Lady Vanishes, because it's set at Yuletide.

    I love Christmas and I wanted to give Legolas and Eowyn the sort of Yuletide celebration we'd all enjoy. (As it turned out, they didn't get much fun in this story, but I hope I made up for that in my 2006 Yuletide calendar). I did a lot of research into Yuletide customs, then drew up a timetable of events—bringing home the Yule Log, greeting the sun, decorating the Yule Tree, Killing the Wren, burning the Yule Wreaths—and wove the plot around them. The boar hunt in chapter two and The Golden Goose brothel were inspired by books that I happened to buy whilst on holiday, and the hunt itself was based on extracts from a mediaeval hunting manual.

    Plotwise, I tend to begin with a handful of ideas, work them into the first few chapters, and then see where the characters take them. In this case my original idea of having a female victim imprisoned in a tower by her wicked stepmother soon turned into a male victim imprisoned in a tower by his wicked uncle, but my OMC, Berkin, took me by surprise by simply refusing to remain passive and, instead, pulling the strings from inside his prison.

    What makes this absolutely my favourite story is the moment when Eomer asks Berkin what evidence he has against his uncle. As I typed those words I had no idea what the answer would be—I imagined some sort of document. Instead, Berkin put his hand in the pouch and pulled out two rings, engraved with his parents' names—and that's when I remembered that the assassin had said that he had to provide the victims' fingers, with rings on them, as proof of his killings.

  2. The Usual Suspects, because it's a long, complex story with several OCs I'm proud of.

    In terms of hits, stars and reviews this is my least successful story, but I think it contains some of my best writing.

    When I originally decided to send Legolas & Eowyn to Far Harad (in The Strange Sea Road), I knew that there would be a second story set there because I'd always wanted to write something based on Casablanca. I love Humphrey Bogart—or, rather, I love the character he plays so well—the seemingly ordinary man with the core of steel, and Rick became Ribhadda. Berengar appeared because several people had asked me to show Faramir with his lover—which gave me all sorts of problems, because I'm not by nature a slash writer and, in any case, I was posting the story at a het-only archive.

    The plot has a great big chasm running through the middle of it, caused by a simple slip of the pen—I had carelessly made the journey from Carhilivren to Rihat two days, meaning that Faramir's adventure had to take at least five days, and I simply could not keep Eowyn trapped in Wolfram's hideout for that long or poor Legolas would have had an apoplexy! So I had to let Legolas rescue Eowyn and then keep the Wolfram story simmering until Faramir had found Gwirith... But that did give me the opportunity to put Wolfram into a disguise—which, I hope, had readers wondering just what was going on—and the opportunity to include lots of detail that I wouldn't otherwise have had time for.

  3. The Strange Sea Road, because of its ending.

    This story began as a mental image of Legolas, stripped to the waist, being auctioned as a slave—ahem—and a desire to see Faramir behaving heroically. Then I happened to read a review of a book by Giles Milton, called White Gold, about muslim slavers raiding the south coast of England, and another review of a book set in the world of The Arabian Nights, and it all came together.

    Wolfram's right, by the way, elfnapping is bloody hard work—how could a human possibly creep up on an elf?—but I hope I got round it by having the elves kidnapped off stage. As usual, the characters took matters into their own hands and I had to adjust the plot to keep up with them—Hentmirë, bless her, got so excited when she saw Legolas that I couldn't possibly let her be disappointed, so the man who was supposed to buy Legolas never got the chance to bid for him; and Valandil was over the wall and into the prison before I could stop him...

    As for the ending: well, I wrote it shortly after I lost my mother and it didn't occur to me until long afterwards that what Shamash is giving Hentmirë (and Wilawen) is chemotherapy that will actually work.

  4. All of my Little Legolas stories.

    My Little Legolas stories were inspired by a wonderful drawing by Dawnlyn (scroll down to Easter Elf and click). Whenever I look at that sweet little button of a face, a story just seems to write itself. The biggest challenge is to keep Thranduil-the-loving-single-parent-of-a-young-elfling consistent with Thranduil-the-wily-and-rather-manipulative-father-of-adult-Legolas I've already established in Misrule in Mirkwood.

    I've had a lot of feedback (for me) on these stories, all of it positive except for a stream of messages from one—er—reader who objected to Thranduil's encounter with the elleth in The Artist on the grounds that elves mate for life. When she threatened me with a 'sporking' I was insulted; but, given that Ningloreth is elvish for Susan, I had to grin at being called a 'suethor' :-)

  5. The Eowyn/Legolas challenge, because it feels good to get back to Legolas/Eowyn basics.

    This story, written for the fanfic100 challenge, will eventually consist of 100 episodes, each based on a prompt provided. The individual parts can be as long or as short (minimum 100 words) as I want, can be a part of the ongoing plot or a digression, and must focus on Legolas and Eowyn—all of which makes them quite relaxing to write.

    Added to that, the story features an OMC that I truly adore, grumpy, mouthy, pig-headed Thorkell bogsveigir :-)

Since both nebride and capella_fic have already been tagged, I tag eowynangel, hotspur18 and sagaluthien.


Posted by: sagaluthien (sagaluthien)
Posted at: March 13th, 2007 08:35 pm (UTC)

It is so great to read what the author self think of her stories. I love all the stories I've read so far from you and rather recommend everything than one or two.
I see that you do tagged me and truthfully I started to think of which ones is mine and I will put it up in my lj later... still has to decided number five.

Posted by: ningloreth (ningloreth)
Posted at: March 22nd, 2007 12:13 pm (UTC)

Thanks for leaving a comment! I see you've posted yours. I think I can guess who the actor in The Sheila is, but I'll read it to make sure :-)

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