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09 December 2005 @ 06:02 pm
Slashy Nominations 134: Wagons, Roll!  
Okay, first, a cry for help. A long time ago, some kind person emailed me a list of body swap stories, including "Being Benton Fraser" and a Farscape story with John in Aeryn's body and Aeryn in Rygel's body (possibly based on an episode). Not too long after, that email account did a spectacular flame-out, the kind fandom can only dream of emulating, and took down with it all my neatly-stored emails of that kind. I'm hoping someone out there can help me find a) the Farscape story - there was a root vegetable involved, as I recall - and b) the person who sent me the recs. I've been looking forever, and I officially give up. Anyone? Help? Please?

Second thing, of course, is my list of stories for you. I'd like you to join me today for a Very Special Edition of the Slashy Awards. See, I've been sensing some malaise out there, some disaffection with the world in general. norah was particularly plaintive in her cry to be on vacation this week, and I'm getting the sense that a lot of my friends list would also like to be anywhere but where they are. Of course, I can't really help you. I mean, I can't send y'all to Fiji for the fresh mango juice and the friendly goldfish. But I can remind you of fan fiction where the characters do that. So if "shipwrecked and comatose" actually sounds like an excellent deal right about now, this set is for you.

See the Historic World's Largest Toenail in Buttfuck, Nebraska! Adventures in America's Heartland, by pearl_o. due South, Ray Kowalski/Benton Fraser. You know, I love Fraser. I do. But I think we can all agree that he has the potential to be a somewhat challenging companion, particularly in certain kinds of activities. Like, for example, recreational travel. He absolutely would want to stop to read every historic marker on the entire freeway, when all real travelers know that what they all say is: "Something happened here. But you've never heard of it, and we have no intention of telling you about it in any kind of detail, because otherwise you might get some sleep instead of wondering about it all night. And don't even think about googling it; the motels out here don't have wireless, sucker." (I, um. I was betrayed in my youth by a few historic markers. Does it show?) Of course, Ray would not precisely be the world's most pleasant companion either. See, for both of them, it's about the journey; just, for Fraser, it's about the scenery he can take in, but for Ray it's about the vehicle he's traveling in. So I wouldn't advise you to leave home with these guys, but that's fine, because really we all want them to leave home together. And that, my friends - that is very entertaining indeed.

Experience the Glory of Nature and the Majesty of the Elements on an Unplanned and Unwelcome Sabbatical in Panama! Limbo, by julad. The Sentinel, Jim Ellison/Blair Sandburg. This came from the ts_ficathons challenge Getting a Sense for Cliches. The challenge stories are fascinating reading, in large part because a lot of writers who were in TS of old participated in the challenge for one last playdate with the boys. It was unexpectedly gripping (...definitely way better than historical markers) to see how style changes and other fandoms and time affected each author's voice and style, and it was even more gripping to see how their relationship with TS and Jim and Blair had changed. Everyone who has been writing a while should head back to a first fandom from time to time. For my entertainment, of course. (What, you thought I was going to tell you it'd make you a better person or something? Yeah. And would you trust me if I did promise that?) This story does a brilliant job of dealing with one of those little weak spots that are part of the ineffable charm of the TS canon, namely that Blair's final solution to the whole accidental-outing-of-Jim problem is not actually one that is going to work for very long. But not to worry; Jim and Blair are up to the job. This story shows us that we have nothing to fear except lawyers and pulpless orange juice. And that Jim and Blair belong together. Really, it makes me want to say something incredibly sentimental, and I would, but I'm afraid I'd sprain something, so no. Just - you know. Read this.

Decipher the Unimaginable Mysteries of the Local Cuisine and Culture in Rural Minnesota! The Empty Well, by Destina Fortunato, aka destina. Stargate: SG-1, Jack O'Neill/Daniel Jackson. Oh, how I love the SG1 team; they're wonderful together. And in this story, they're all very much in their accustomed roles: Jack catching fish, Teal'c efficiently dismembering the fish, Carter pondering the space-time implications of the fish, and Daniel refusing to eat the fish for moral reasons. And then they sustain numerous casualties during the course of a very dangerous children's game. (Very dangerous. I've played that game with the most competitive woman on the earth. It is a game that kills, people, and if there was any sense in the world the people who go on and on about video games would be working to ban this instead.) Seriously, I love these people to death. (And, you know, past it. Several times.) Just as good are Jack and Daniel by themselves, each decrypting heavily encoded messages in their own way. I love this story for the hope it gives me for SG1, including a happy ending in the face of nearly insurmountable odds, and I love it for one of my all-time favorite Jack and Daniel exchanges. (Daniel: "Think outside the box." Jack: "I like the box.") Really, just read this. You won't be sorry. And you won't have to catch any fish to do it, either.

Choose Your Companions Wisely for Your Whirlwind Just-the-Low-Spots Tour of Southern North America! Arizona, Puerto Vallarta, and Mexico City, by seperis. Stargate: Atlantis, John Sheppard/Rodney McKay. And, um. Don't be reading that last one if you like your endings happy, okay? Or, let me put it is this way - if you do read it, and it makes you sad, blame the author, not me. I can only rec what they give me, you know. (The eternal plight of the recommender, it just brings tears to your eyes. So very tragic.) But do read this. Why? Well, how's this: John is an assassin hired to kill Rodney McKay. And then there is sex. (See, and this is why I love the SGA fandom; I can think of several excellent and original stories with that basic plotline. Seriously, at some point soon I will able to assemble a set on almost any theme at all just from SGA. Not that I will. Just knowing that the possibility exists will be enough for me to die happy.) And now I'm kind of up a tree without a chainsaw here. I can either get detailed, which will be all spoil-y, or carry on with the non-specific encouraging praise, which, face it, if those were going to get you to read this, you would have already clicked away from this page, or go for the tragically over-specific praise. ("For a story with such a lot of stomach trouble in it, really, it's amazingly sexy!") I think the wisest option would be d: none of the above. Also known as: shutting up now.

Get Back to Nature, Commune with the Future, and Have Lots of Sex All Over the Great State of Maine! Dirigo, by Speranza, aka cesperanza. Dead Zone, Johnny Smith/Sarah Bannerman/Walt Bannerman. This is a brilliant story, and I think you'll appreciate how brilliant when I tell you I love it even though it took me more than a week to get through the first part. See, the first part, it's not the most comfortable part of the story. It's actually, for me, by far the least comfortable part. And normally authors suck you in and then make you tense, but Speranza pretty much just hits you with it from word one. Or, actually, you know what? It isn't her, really. It's me. Because, see, the dinner party that damn near killed me dead isn't nearly as excruciating as I thought it was going to be. It just took me a while to read the actual words; I was all night-before-school-starts anticipating of the very worst. It isn't as bad as all that. Just, you know, uncomfortable. But so very worth it; trust me here. Doesn't matter if you don't know the characters, doesn't matter if you don't know the show, doesn't matter if you don't like threesomes - read this. You won't be sorry. Although, in all fairness, I have to say that this is not a crew you should trust when they break out the good china; there's another dinner party in here that stopped my reading cold for much of a night. (I had to have a fight with myself. It went like this:

TFV's Paranoia: Oh, god, this has the potential for unbridled disaster. There is only one way this can possibly go, and if she isn't on that track, I'm doomed.
TFV's Confidence: Trust Speranza. She handled the other dinner pretty well, didn't she? You always get worked up over nothing. It'll be fine. Read.
TFV's Paranoia: But if she screws this up at all I will never be able to read her work again. That would be a very bad thing!

Fortunately, at that point my inner drill sergeant showed up and made the point that I was damned well going to finish the story and everyone knew it, so I should suck it up, goddammit. Which I did, and it turned out that everything went the way I needed it to go after all, so my angst was for entertainment purposes only.) But, again: worth it! Wonderful, and so very worth it! Just keep a few tension sheets on hand for the dinner parties, is my advice.
Andrasteandrastewhite on December 9th, 2005 06:13 pm (UTC)
Unless there's more than one Farscape story involving bodyswapping and root vegetables - which is completely possible - I think you're after feldman's Scientist, Astronaut and Nymphomaniac.
j00j on December 9th, 2005 08:00 pm (UTC)
Yes, that's the one I was thinking of, too. It's fun!
(no subject) - thefourthvine on December 10th, 2005 02:20 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on December 10th, 2005 02:19 am (UTC) (Expand)
torn between not okay and maybe kind of cutekalpurna on December 9th, 2005 06:20 pm (UTC)
Jack catching fish, Teal'c efficiently dismembering the fish, Carter pondering the space-time implications of the fish, and Daniel refusing to eat the fish for moral reasons.

You are so right. Story of their fucking lives.
ficbyzee on December 9th, 2005 06:34 pm (UTC)
Your icon *wins.*
(no subject) - kalpurna on December 9th, 2005 06:56 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on December 10th, 2005 02:23 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on December 10th, 2005 02:24 am (UTC) (Expand)
strangerian on December 9th, 2005 06:53 pm (UTC)
By the power of Google, I give you, Being Benton Fraser by Theodosia. Is this what you're looking for, or a frail imposter?
strangerian on December 9th, 2005 06:54 pm (UTC)
Oh, well, maybe you knew that. But I didn't. Thanks for the mention of it. Body-swap stories are a guilty pleasure for me.
(no subject) - thefourthvine on December 10th, 2005 02:49 am (UTC) (Expand)
Seperisseperis on December 9th, 2005 08:00 pm (UTC)
("For a story with such a lot of stomach trouble in it, really, it's amazingly sexy!")

My God, that's the best summary *ever*. I just did a count and am now disturbed I didn't realize how many--er, stomach complaints there really are.

*grinns hugely* Thank you for the rec.
tried to eat the safe banana: I sleep with computers.thefourthvine on December 10th, 2005 02:56 am (UTC)
My God, that's the best summary *ever*.

Thank you. I'm proud of it. *is smug*

I just did a count and am now disturbed I didn't realize how many--er, stomach complaints there really are.

But you did the very important, absolutely crucial thing: you kept the stomach complaints and the sex separate. And I cannot tell you how grateful I am. (Hint: it is a lot more than a lot.)

Thank you for the rec.

You are most welcome. Thank you for writing the story.

Actually, I sometimes wonder if there's even a point to recommending SGA stories right now, since everyone seems to have already read them, but my policy since the beginning has been: I'll rec what I want to, even if there's obviously no method to my madness.

*is extremely self-centered as well as smug*

*is, in fact, very nearly Rodney*
(no subject) - celli on December 10th, 2005 10:55 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thefourthvine on December 12th, 2005 04:22 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - celli on December 12th, 2005 09:01 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - brindel on December 19th, 2005 10:38 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - brindel on December 19th, 2005 10:16 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Karen: Balloonodditycollector on December 9th, 2005 08:43 pm (UTC)
Hey, thanks for pointing me at The Empty Well. Totally made my evening.
tried to eat the safe banana: Writing - Pillow Bookthefourthvine on December 10th, 2005 02:58 am (UTC)
*nods enthusiastically*

Is it not an amazing story? I read that thing at least once a month.

Totally made my evening.

I cannot tell you how grateful I am for the J/D Ficathon stories. They pretty much made my whole summer.
Iphiginia Saberhagen: Silhouette Moose from MMWDfanofall on December 9th, 2005 09:04 pm (UTC)
*is prim*

There is no Buttfuck, Nebraska, silly. That would just be wrong. There is, unfortunately, a Beaver Crossing; make of that what you will.


Loved them, as always!
tried to eat the safe banana: Moose in bluethefourthvine on December 10th, 2005 03:03 am (UTC)
Are you sure? Because I swear I've been to Buttfuck, Nebraska. It was, you know. Flat. And isolated. And very dull.

...Come to think of it, it's no surprise there's no Buttfuck, Nebraska, because that particular word does not bring "flat, isolated, and dull" right to my mind.

There is, unfortunately, a Beaver Crossing; make of that what you will.

I make of that that residents of that fine northern city either have a very limited grasp of double entendres, or they spend all their time blushing.

*is prim*

*admires the schoolmarm outfit, which you are totally rocking*

(P.S. Email received, response in progress. It turned into a big old whine-fest, so I will have to remove large swaths of it before I send it. I mean, it's like a whine jungle in there; I'm going to need to use a machete on that thing.)
(no subject) - fanofall on December 10th, 2005 09:56 am (UTC) (Expand)
janne_djanne_d on December 10th, 2005 05:01 am (UTC)
Ooh, hey, I think that was me...*checks yahoo* Yup, that was me! Looks like nice people have already found you the Farscape and dS ones, but there was a Smallville Clark/Lex swap by RivkaT and a HL Methos/Duncan swap by jacquez that isn't even slash but is particularly brilliant anyway. Want me to send you those links too?

tried to eat the safe banana: Time won't find the lostthefourthvine on December 10th, 2005 07:03 am (UTC)

I am so glad you saw this. Posting a general message for a person whose name you don't know is, you know, in poor LJ taste, but, well - it worked, so I'm not sorry. (And I'm glad I actually had enough identifying details to describe your message; the service crash took out a lot of really cool stuff, like small fandom pimping kits, that I can't describe that well.)

Yes, I would love another copy of the email; I have an LJ email address (thefourthvine at livejournal dot come) and a gmail one (the same, but with gmail in place of lj).

Was the SV one Switch? Because if so, that's another one I managed to read and record before the General Lostness of All Things took hold. But I still would like to read the HL one, especially as I am now very hesitantly dipping my toes into that fandom.

And thank you. Even if I never managed to reply to you, you inspired me to start a new theme set collection (...body swaps, obviously), and it now has seven stories in it. And that's before any potential HL addition. So I will even have actual difficult choices to make when it's time to write up that set. (And, as a side note - in the process of assembling the set, I also developed great affection for semi-body swaps - two people, one body, one person, two bodies, that kind of thing.)
(no subject) - janne_d on December 10th, 2005 08:18 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - janne_d on December 10th, 2005 08:20 am (UTC) (Expand)
kassrachel on December 10th, 2005 06:23 am (UTC)
It was unexpectedly gripping (...definitely way better than historical markers) to see how style changes and other fandoms and time affected each author's voice and style, and it was even more gripping to see how their relationship with TS and Jim and Blair had changed.

It's fascinating to me that the change in style was perceptible to you, though as I think about it, not surprising. Writing them definitely felt different, during that challenge, than it used to back when they were my first and only fannish loves...
tried to eat the safe banana: Writing - Pillow Bookthefourthvine on December 10th, 2005 09:05 am (UTC)
I'm sort of a closet fan fiction style geek; I spend a lot of time watching the way people develop their styles, the way fandom changes or additions affect style, all that. It's sometimes useful - it's made it much easier for me to know which brand-new writers I should be watching most closely, and what part of my reactions to a given story arise from the writer's stylistic differences - but mostly it's just one of those very interesting things you can't help thinking about.

One of the coolest things about SGA for me has been seeing the effects of all the different starting fandoms on the way people write in this relatively new fandom that has not yet had time to develop a real, overarching fandom style. Even now, in the middle of the second season, there's enough variance that I can often work back to the styles for fandoms I don't read by seeing how the authors from said fandom write their first SGA stories. Which is totally useless, but loads of fun.

But I never expected anything as perfectly designed to enthrall the style geek in me as the one-more-time stories from the Getting a Sense of Cliches challenge; it was custom-made for examining fandom influences and perspective shifts. (For example, I formed - although of course cannot yet even begin to support - the opinion that a different level of investment in the characters and fandom produces a different kind of story, while other fandom influences tend to affect style more than content. On the other hand, not much seems to change voice; most authors still write a given character's dialog pretty much the way they always did, allowing for changes due to maturation as a writer.) It was just...wow. I read through most of those stories three times, because that's how long it took me to stop style geeking so I could, you know, actually appreciate the stories.

(And now, of course, I'm wondering about how this interacts with writer awareness, since you were aware that the it felt different when you wrote your story. Raises a lot of interesting cause and effect questions. Hmmm.)

...But, you know, this is probably much more than you wanted to know about my private obsessions. Suffice to say that style is something I always, always notice, because it makes me deeply happy to have stuff like this to think about while I'm waiting in line at the grocery store.
(no subject) - kassrachel on December 10th, 2005 01:20 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - brindel on December 19th, 2005 10:35 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - delurker on December 11th, 2005 03:33 am (UTC) (Expand)
Qqe2 on December 10th, 2005 06:33 am (UTC)
In-smegging-credible, as usual.

*snugs you hard*
tried to eat the safe banana: Yum in whitethefourthvine on December 10th, 2005 09:07 am (UTC)
Thank you.

*snugs right back atcha*

(And eeeee! You caught my Red Dwarf references. Yay!)
(no subject) - qe2 on December 11th, 2005 07:13 am (UTC) (Expand)
plus one skeleton: Maskdelurker on December 11th, 2005 02:16 am (UTC)
Fun fun fun, in the sun sun sun
Those are all such excellent stories! Except that I am coping with the ending of seperis's city series by steadfastly insisting that it is not, in fact, the ending. It took me a while to develope this survival technique, but thankfully I did so at an early age when I was reading profic.
(*pokes gently at teh Internets in case a happier sequel has magically appeared*)

Also, did I see you mention a bodyswap theme coming up? Because bodyswap recs are amoung my absolute favouritest fics ever. I will read them regardless of fandom knowledge - except I do that anyway, so perhaps it will be better to say I will read them regardless of how shaky a grasp the author has on things such as spelling, punctuation, grammar, and even capitalisation. (Happily, most authors do not attempt bodyswap fic until they can actually write, yay!)