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Yuletide letter
[misc] dreamers
Hello, dear Yuletide writer! Thank you so much for writing for me. Whatever you write, it'll be in one of these fandoms, and so I'm sure I'm going to love it.

If you're the sort of person who prefers to have minimal details from the recipient, you hereby have my permission to close this letter and wander away to do your own thing. I have preferences but no triggers or serious I-cannot-read-this dealbreakers. But if you, like me, tend to prefer as much information as possible, here you go. :) I also try to sum up what a canon is and how easy it is to consume in a hurry, if you don't like the prompts in the canon we matched on.

An incomplete list of things I like: Worldbuilding, especially in small details. Friendship. Characters who aren't friends nonetheless understanding each other; characters realizing that they aren't friends now but maybe could become such. Found families. Birth families. Siblings, parents, children, all the complicated relationships of people who love and like and dislike and squabble with each other. Banter. Competence. Trust. Characters for whom romance is only one part of their lives. Badass characters; badass characters being ordinary, and ordinary characters being badass. Things left unsaid, but understood; things left unsaid that only the reader catches. Ensemble fic. Character studies. World studies. Minor characters. Original characters. Physicality, of a character's motion or worldview or just of the objects around them. Third party views of relationships, or events. Mythology, both in the narrative and in a character's worldview. Magic that sneaks into the everyday world. Culture gaps and cultural misunderstandings and translations accurate and otherwise. Plot is awesome, but not necessary.

Things I like less: I have no objection to high ratings, including NC-17, but I'd ask that the story not be primarily about that; I don't come to Yuletide for PWP. If you want to put in a sex scene, please do it because that serves the broader story. (I don't think this is relevant to any of these canons, but my big squicks are adult/child, teacher/student, and any sexual relationship involving unequal power dynamics. If it looks unequal from the outside but that's quietly subverted by the actual relationship dynamics, that's a-okay.) I'm not particularly drawn to AUs of the sort that change the base universe -- that is, I'm fine with "this event happened differently," especially for the two canons where that's part of my prompt, but I don't really want "everyone's a modern US college student/a ballet dancer/a kitten" for any of these canons. Sexism, racism, ablism, etc are things that I know many characters will believe or experience, to some degree or another, but I'd appreciate at least a nod to the fact that the narrative doesn't agree with those IC beliefs.

Okay, on to the actual prompts!

Lord Peter Wimsey - Dorothy L. Sayers

Mary Wimsey
Alexandra "Kitty" Climpson

I love Lord Peter and Harriet as much as the next person -- and if you find yourself stumped, please feel free to toss my prompts out the window and write what inspires you, because anything that keeps the general feel of canon will make me happy -- but what I'd really love is to see a focus on the minor characters. I picked two of them, but you should feel free to interpret that as an Or choice; a story that includes both of them would of course be fantastic, but a tight focus on either one would be just as delightful. If none of these prompts inspire you, I'd also happily receive something about one of the other minor characters -- Bunter, or Parker, or any of the non-nominated folk who only show up for a book or two. (I'd prefer something about the more working-class folks rather than something focused on Peter's other family members, though, if you do venture outside the nominated characters.)

For Mary: what is it like, being happily married to a police officer after the way she grew up? I do ship Mary/Charles, and I'd like anything about them to be ultimately happy or at least hopeful, but you can venture into the difficulties they might have had in adjusting to married life together, or you could just focus on happy times. Or how about something set in her younger days, or post-canon? Honestly, any point in her life would be fun. Does she have any of her brother's detective skill, or is there some other kind of puzzle she prefers to turn her intelligence to? While she made some foolish choices in Clouds Of Witness, I do think she's got a keen intelligence, and common sense when she chooses to exercise it. What does that look like for her?

For Miss Climpson: I just find her enormously endearing. Another case she's helping Lord Peter with? An ordinary day in the life, or a church bazaar or some such? She must turn her observational skills and inimitable assessments on other friends and other contexts. Anything involving her perspective on the world and bustling interest in all its denizens will delight me!

For both of these characters, a crossover would be delightful, if inspiration strikes, but a fic set purely in the world of the Wimsey books will make me just as happy.

If you don't know this canon: It's a series of mystery novels by Dorothy Sayers, written and set in the 1920s-30s. They're all delightful, despite occasional "wow that offhand period racism just came out of nowhere augh" moments, but not the most accessible emergency canon unless you're a very fast reader. That said, Mary mostly shows up in Clouds of Witness, and Miss Climpson in Unnatural Death (a novel which... has some problems, in my opinion, admittedly) and Strong Poison.

The Outlaws of Sherwood - Robin McKinley

Any (Nominated characters: Little John (Outlaws of Sherwood), Marjorie (Outlaws of Sherwood), Cecily of Norwell, Marian of Trafford)

Oh my god, this character set. I'm starry-eyed. YES PLEASE.

Okay, the dream of my heart from long before I knew fanfic existed is either a) a fix-it fic for the ending, or b) an epilogue of all (or at least most) of them coming back to Sherwood post-canon. I'm not sure how that would work, but basically, we spent a whole book seeing Sherwood be home to them, a place they knew inside and out, and seeing the band of outlaws become close and trusting, and then we got Cecily's revelations... and then, boom, that ending. Whether you AU how the entire Guy of Gisbourne thing goes down, or keep that but have Marian accept the job King Richard offers and the others get to stay home too somehow, or keep everything as-is but give me an epilogue of homecoming, I'll be happy. (Although I admit that Sheriff Marian is a GREAT idea, and I would love to see you run with that, if the idea appeals to you.) Or, heck, show me how things go in the Crusades; I would be very interested to see them adjust to a new and very different setting while still having each other's friendship and trust. (If you do that, however, you don't need to do super grimdark -- and I would rather you didn't -- but, uh, an uncomplicated YAY CRUSADES WE KILLED MANY SARACENS TODAY is not my happy place.)

If you don't like that idea, I'd also be delighted by anything showcasing these characters in their lives around the forest, interacting with the other outlaws. Bonus points for any of the women bonding, whether or not Cecily has revealed herself yet. Or we don't really see Marian and Cecily talking about anything to do with Cecily's revelation, given the timing of plot events; whether you go AU or stick with canon, I would love to see some of that!

One note: I'm super happy to be on board with all the canonical pairings, but I don't really want romance to be the primary focus of the story. I'm happy to have it in the background!

If you don't know this canon: It's a very easy emergency canon! It's one standalone book, a 1980s YA retelling of the Robin Hood legends. I love it to bits despite my arguments with the ending, which this letter has somewhat spoiled you for, sorry.

かぐや姫の物語 | Kaguya-hime no Monogatari | The Tale of the Princess Kaguya

Any (Nominated characters: Kaguya | Takenoko, Sanuki no Miyatsuko, Sanuki no Miyatsuko's wife, Sutemaru)

What I really want for this canon is fix-it fic. It's such a beautiful film, and so wonderfully done, but in many ways it's the story of Takenoko/Kaguya being denied her agency over and over again; I kept waiting for the moment when the story would alter from its original tragic trajectory and let her reclaim any control in her own life, and it never came. (Or rather, it looked as if it had come -- and then no.) So anything that changes the ending of canon to give Takenoko her own life on the Earth would make me very, very happy.

The obvious course is to take that "only a dream" reunion with Sutemaru and run with it, although I don't want his family completely ignored, either. But you could diverge more sharply from canon, too. Or go post-canon, with her getting some of her memories back on the moon, and taking things into her own hands somehow. Having her be reborn again on Earth and having that life with other parents go better is an option, too. Basically I just want her to have agency in her own life, and a happy ending! All the rest is flexible.

If you don't know this canon: It's a Studio Ghibli movie, based on the Japanese folktale which often bears the same name. It's a good emergency canon in that it's a single standalone movie! I saw it in a theater screening and I haven't investigated how easy it is to find, however.

Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha | Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha

Takamachi Nanoha
Fate Testarossa | Fate T. Harlaown

What I'm really interested in here is that ten-year gap between the events of A's and the start of StrikerS. What all happens in that time? Anything to fill the gap would be great! Adventures off-planet with the Time-Space Administration Bureau, or hanging out on Earth, or Fate's relationship with Lindy (and with her own past), or whatever strikes your fancy. Any tone from hijinks to quiet slice of life to angst will make me happy. If that doesn't appeal, what about something to do with Nanoha and her family at any point in canon, with or without Fate visiting? What does her family think of all this? (Do either of her parents have experience with interplanetary wackiness too, given how calmly and cheerfully they accept everything?) Please note that while I listed both Fate and Nanoha, this is an "or" listing; you can focus on just one of them if that seems more fun to you.

A note: I definitely ship Nanoha/Fate, and this is one canon where I would be completely fine with something romance-focused (once they're well into their teenaged years), if you do want to go that route. If you don't want to, though, there are plenty of years when they're both too young for anything but friendship and starry-eyed "SHE'S SO COOL" to be a thing, and/or I'm happy to have something gen-focused at any age. I'd prefer not something that unambiguously said "they're not together and they're never going to be, here is one of them seriously dating somebody else," but other than that anything's good.

If you don't know this canon: It's a magical girl anime, with three seasons: Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha, Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's, and Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS. The first two seasons are 13 episodes each, and the third is 26 episodes. So whether it's a good emergency canon depends on your interest in marathoning mid-2000s magical girl fight scenes and feelings! (Also, trigger warning for the fact that Fate's mother is extremely emotionally abusive; that is not presented as a good or excusable thing, and Fate is not blamed for having complicated feelings and complicated loyalty about the whole thing even after she cuts ties. A's has a major plotline involving a chronically ill kid for magical reasons, and I haven't watched it in long enough that I don't remember how much fail there is in that.) Anyway, that said, it's frothy fun with some surprising emotional depth that's touched on, if not lingered on for very long.

Books of the Raksura - Martha Wells

Stone (Books of the Raksura)

Oh, Stone. Everybody's favorite cranky battle grandpa!

He's such a departure from normal Raksura expectations for consorts, which I find fascinating. Obviously he gets a lot of leeway as a line-grandfather, but he also is the kind of person who became the line-grandfather he is, instead of somebody more conventional. How? Why? What was he like when he was younger? More conventional, or a lot like Moon despite growing up in a colony, or what? Anything set at any point in Stone's life that sheds light on him would be tons of fun.

(Please note, I haven't read the fourth book yet as of the writing of this letter, but I will definitely have done so before the Yuletide archive opens, so feel free to pull from any of canon.)

If you don't know canon: The Raksura books are a series by Martha Wells, containing four books plus a few short stories. They're not an unworkable emergency canon, but it's four books dense with (fantastic!) worldbuilding plus a few short stories, so probably not your easiest bet.

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