Wednesday, September 30, 2009

CharacterExploration: Paul/Quil/Jared - The Pack as Seen By Moon.Witche and CDunbar

Paul, Quil, & Jared

When Christine and I sat down to write this character exploration, we found it could be summed up in the following conversation:

I still haven't found a single Jared story that I like
      are you only looking at Jared and Kim stories?
    you know how I feel about couples and the canon-ness of them
its just that they're all the same
    Jared's the jerk who never noticed her, Kim is basically Bella or a Mary Sue
    and then he has to win her over after he's imprinted
    there's never any plot or story
      PLEASE write that
in the article?
we'll get an awesome response back because that's pretty much what I'm going to say about Paul
    I love it
I think our article could be summed up into "Read all of Alice Laughed's Quil stuff and someone write a good Jared or Paul canon story with an actual PLOT!"
    lets post that
    I like it
      :brushes hands together:
      well, that was easy
we should push the button
the red button?
yeah, the easy button
if only...
maybe I'll start looking around for some more Quil stuff
    really though, I want JARED
    good JARED fic
have you tried livejournal?
no, I suck at finding fic on LJ
me too
      we should hunt down Claire and see if there's a good pack community to scope out for fic recommendations
I think there is.....
there's only one Jared fic
apparently I'm a member of this community
      and didn't know it
    you're so crassssy
    ....that works better when actually talking
either way, I said "crazy" oddly


(as seen by Caitlin)
I'm not sure why I like Jared as much as I do. We don't see much of him in the books, and in fact, we probably see less of him in fanfiction. We don't even know his last name or how old he is.

He is still in high school but is probably older than Jacob, as he was the first one to transform after Sam. Jared is one of the wolves Bella sees cliff jumping near the beginning of New Moon.

And he is one of five wolves to imprint. (That we know of.)

The only time we see Jared and Kim together in canon is in chapter 11 of Eclipse. They are at the bonfire where Bella first hears the story that makes her freak out with a rock at the end. And it is the descriptions here that I believe fuel my interest in this character.

The way he stared at her! It was like a blind man seeing the sun for the first time. Like a collector finding an undiscovered Da Vinci, like a mother looking into the face of her newborn child.

Bella goes on to describe how through watching Jared look at Kim she sees Kim differently. There is something very powerful in that.

Imprinting is such an interesting subject, one that I feel we have not delved deep enough into in fanfic. A lot of the Jared fic out there write him as not even knowing Kim's name before imprinting on her (the impossibility of this in such a small school is never addressed) but once he does, she is his everything.

I have tried reading probably around twenty Jared and Kim fics this week alone. And I'm never able to get further then the second chapter. Most of these fics are written from Kim's point of view, and she is basically Bella. Quiet, shy, smart - but not a genius, with a normal family. And, of course, she's been in love with Jared since kindergarten, or whenever, but has never spoken to him. And then he imprints and follows her around, and that's about when I give up.

It strikes me as unrealistic that Jared would give in that easily. He doesn't even know this girl. Never looked at her before in his life.

And I have yet to read a fic where the writer really captured the depth of imprinting. My feelings on the rest of Breaking Dawn aside, I loved seeing Jacob imprint. I loved the first person perspective on it. The way everything shifted, and reality was different. And he was tied to her, anchored to her, in a completely unhealthy way.

A fic that comes close to inspiring that same "wow" feeling in me is
Jared and the Sociopath He Imprinted On
by yay4shanghai

She turned to me for the first time, and my life ended. No, that wasn’t the right way to describe it. It didn’t end, it just wasn’t important. The world realigned, gravity and the entire universe shifted, and she was the sun.

I couldn’t move and I was frozen in an awkward position, my mouth now half open in a stupid grin. I half stood/half sat, gaping at the world’s most beautiful, most perfect, amazing, important girl.

I felt like laughing at myself, how could I ever even imagine destroying her, she was everything; she was perfection, if she were gone—the world would have no axis to rotate on.

Kim turned away, and the loss of eye contact was hurting me. I coughed beside her, trying desperately to grab her attention again. My chest hurt more and I needed to see her face before I exploded.

The Kim in this story is a little too abrasive for me (I know, I'm the most picky reader that ever existed) but she isn't Bella, and she isn't a Mary Sue.

A lot of the fic I read with Jared imprinting doesn't show his point of view at all, and all we see is the Kim basically getting herself a very loyal puppy dog. There's no complications on his side.

I want some complications. He's a teenage boy, the second one to transform. He wouldn't have a pack, or a family yet. Just a leader, an alpha, who is in his head all the time and who he is physically unable to say no to.

Then he goes to school and is irrevocably tied to a girl he didn't even know previously.

His life has got to suck for awhile.

We know that Stephanie loves to give her characters happy endings, and that holds true for Jared as well, but we never did see his story. Just his ending. I want to see his story.


(as seen by Christine)
To start with, let’s go over what we learn about Paul from the books:
  • Same age as Jacob
  • Little bit of a temper
  • Turned wolfy around the same time as Jared
  • Imprinted on Rachel Black
And that’s about it. He doesn’t have a family history. He doesn’t have much in way of a physical description besides “shorter than Jacob and less beefy than Quil”. Hell, the boy doesn’t even have a last name.

You're probably thinking to yourself, "And you expect me to create a character out of this?!"

Honestly, yes.

After reading every single summary that involved Paul in some way (all 350 of them) and clicking on more than half of them, I found only three stories that follow canon enough that I can get behind them -- that means a younger Paul imprints on an older Rachel. He doesn’t imprint on an OC or Bella, and definitely not on Leah. (And yes, I only used because guess who’s not listed as characters on That’s right, Paul AND Rachel. *facepalm*)

The reason I dismissed many OC stories out right is because I wanted to see how authors took the relationship between two largely uncharacterized people and created a story out of it. Not just with their imprinting, but with the other issues that arise from them being together.

Rachel is a year or so older than Bella, which makes her three/four years older than Paul. Basically, Paul’s jailbait and damn if that doesn’t make this a great story already. Then there’s the problem between Paul and Jacob. They antagonize each other, which makes them natural adversaries and adds unneeded tension to Rachel’s involvement with Paul.

Dreaming in Black and White, author of
‘When Lightning Strikes’

We aren't ever given the opportunity to judge Paul for ourselves, because the view painted of him from the very beginning is utterly biased; the only way we see him is through the eyes of Bella and Jacob, neither of whom are exactly his biggest fans. In fact, he's probably one of the worst-maligned characters in fanfiction. With this in mind, consider again; why does Paul fly off the handle so easily? Sure, it's because he's got a temper, but who antagonizes him the most? It's Jake.

These two boys – who are, despite a common misconception, the same age – don't like each other for whatever reason. You probably have a Paul to your Jake; the person you do not get along with, and whom you refuse to see any good in whatsoever out of sheer obstinacy. Consequently, the view we're left of him from the books is one of a violent, lazy hot-head – but that's just how Jake sees him. Paul could in actuality be one of the nicest people you ever meet, but with a short fuse and an intense dislike of Jacob Black. I'm not saying he is, but...the thought's there.

Clichesbullet, author of
‘Bada Bing, Bada Boom’

Most people see Paul as hot tempered and problematic to the pack because he can't control himself, but if you read the parts he appears in with a good eye you'll see how he's truly aware of this being his JOB. He's not angry with Jake for talking to Bella just because he likes to get angry, but because he believes she's not as important as the rest of the tribe. He calls Sam "boss" - even if in mockery - and he is quite serious about the whole thing.

Actually, taking himself way too seriously is the problem that causes Paul to explode (literally) so much. All the other boys are laughing and making jokes about it but (even though he plays too and all that) you can tell he's quite aware of his mission. When Jake leaves the pack, he's very worried about warning Rachel and Billy. I know Paul doesn't seem like the type but I'm pretty sure he's the most mature of the pack along with Sam and Jared. Weird, huh?

Don’t you see? The boy’s just misunderstood and needs someone to take him by the hand and show the rest of us how great and “mature” he can be. *wink, wink, nudge, nudge*

Which brings me to my recs:

‘When Lightning Strikes’
is the story that started my Paul love. Dreaming in Black and White does a great job of sticking with canon and showing Paul and Rachel’s relationship develop in between everything that’s going on around them. What I really like about it is its cuteness. Rachel and Paul are just cute together, and since I love the fluff, this is one of my favorites to read.

‘Bada Bing, Bada Boom’
is a lot more random. It’s not as spot-on canon, but it’s pretty funny in its own right. Apparently Rachel used to terrorize Paul when they were younger and now he’s afraid of her. He imprints on her, which leads to him fighting it because he doesn’t want to be imprinted on the spawn of Satan. Plus she keeps calling him ‘Pauline’. Not exactly the best way to start a relationship with your soul mate, but then again, nobody’s relationship is perfect.

And last there’s
‘Smart Girl: The Rachel Black Autobiography’
by addisonj, which was submitted for the Love for the Unloved Contest. It’s just a one-shot, but to me it says a lot about Rachel and the sacrifices she had to make to stay in La Push with Paul. It’s not completely canon, which the author admits in her a/n, because in BD we learn that Rachel graduated early from Washington State but here she still has a year of school left. If you’re willing to overlook that one fact, it’s a great characterization of the girl behind the guy, which to me is like seeing the other half of the puzzle.

To sum up, Paul is virtually an unknown character. With just a little thought into him, however, he could become the next great fanfic fling. I mean, have you seen the guy who's going to be playing him in the movies?

That right there is motivation enough for me.


(as seen by Caitlin and Christine)
Caitlin: Quil was the last of Jacob's friends to phase. Because of this, becoming a werewolf felt more like "joining the cool club" rather than something that ruined his life. I don't think he, or anyone else, ever foresaw how imprinting would be different him.

Christine: Finding out Quil had imprinted on a two-year-old was very memorable for a lot of us. When you think about it, it's a TWO-YEAR-OLD. It doesn't get better the more times you say it. But once you actually think about it, it could be worse... maybe. Quil's life is now defined by Claire and what she needs from him. He's her best friend, her brother, her protector, and when she finally grows up, he'll be whatever she wants him to be. If that's her boyfriend, lover, husband, he'll be that. His relationship with Claire can pretty much be summed up in a scene from Breaking Dawn:

Quil: You missed the party. Princess theme. [Claire] made me wear a crown.
Jacob: Wow, I'm really sorry I wasn't around to see that.
Quil: Don't worry, Emily has pictures. Actually, I look pretty hot.
Jacob: You're such a patsy.
Quil: Claire had a great time. That was the point.

Caitlin: As much disturbing fic as we have featuring Edward and Bella, I'm (pleasantly) surprised I've never come across a disturbing one with Quil and Claire. The potential is certainly there. But authors seem to rise to the challenge of getting these two together without it being creepy. And what a challenge that is. In normal relationships, if Quil had helped raise Claire, the last he would want to be when she was an adult would be a love interest. But he will be, if she wants him to. But we never really hear about whether or not he wants to.

Christine: That's true. It's always a given that he'll want the relationship to turn romantic once she's of age. You see it a lot in
'A Special Kind of Torture'
, which is Quil's point of view from key scenes in
'Dear Diary'
by Alice Laughed.

Caitlin: I was wondering how long it would take you to bring up Alice Laughed. The author of two of my favourite Quil/Claire stories,
Dear Diary.
Dear Diary, a series of diary entries from Claire starting when she is ten and ending when she is eighteen, details the change and growth in their relationship and shows the depth of Claire's feelings for Quil as she gets to know him in different ways through the years.

Broken is about a Claire and Quil that were separated after he imprinted on her. And the physical and emotional ramifications of spending eighteen years apart from your only reason for being alive.

Christine: Oh, I do love Broken. Another good one is
Early Imprint: Quil's Story
by IAmKate, which shows mainly Quil's point of view from the beginning of his imprint to Claire as a grown up. It's not the usual "Claire grows up and falls in love with Quil" story. There's some heartbreak in there, but it ends wonderfully and deserves a look if you're interested in seeing how their relationship would have sustained had Claire left La Push for college.

But it's also important to remember Quil as a person. He's just a teenage guy, trying to be fill all these different roles for the various people in his life. It's easy to lose sight of him when you just focus on one of his roles, which is why I love
'Bark at the Moon'
by Stretch so much. Because you see Quil as just a guy. He goofs off, cracks jokes with Embry and Jake, and isn't ruled by the mood swings of a toddler.

Caitlin: I suppose Quil has been written about more than other male members of the pack because his situation is so odd and abnormal. Even for a werewolf. He's a teenage boy who has been given an ultimate "cool" card. He has natural muscle and build, he is part of an exclusive group that the elders of his tribe respect. He gets to save people. But instead of being able to use this, as most normal teenage males would, he is instead spending his free time with a toddler. She is, against his will, the most important thing ever to him. And authors know that there is a fantastic story to tell there.

Christine: If only we could find more stories that tell that fantastic story. What if Quil couldn't harbor romantic feelings toward Claire after taking care of her for her entire life? What if Claire's family refused to let him see her later on in life once they released how attached they were? What if Claire rejected Quil for a life outside of La Push?

There are so many ways their story could go because we only get to see the beginning of it. It's like Caitlin said for Jared - you see his ending, but not the beginning.

So, what kind of ending should Quil have?

This is what makes writing fanfiction fun because you get to decide.

The Rest of the Pack

It’s easy to forget about their existence when faced with the likes of Edward, Jasper, the rest of the Cullens and Jacob, but they’re just as much a part of this story as the vampires are.

I think Dreaming in Black and White said it best:

Essentially, all of the members of the pack are far deeper than they're often given credit for. These boys can turn into wolves! They're teenagers forced to protect their community thanks to a genetic mutation, living in a secret which they can't tell any of their friends about, and can't have a friend or girlfriend without running the risk of seriously injuring them if they do as little as lose their temper. They're close to immortal...and if those factors don't make them at least as interesting as the vampires, I don't know what does.

So the next time you want to write a Twilight ‘verse fanfic, take a chance on one of the Quileute boys.

You might be surprised what comes out.
is the author of
How My Life was Ruined in 14 Days
Echoes of an Enigma
. She is our wiley Canadian broad who loves Theatre and putting the beat down on shady audio recording software.
is the author of
Resident Geek
, fellow lover of tasteful slash, generous beta, and all around awesome lady. They both host
Temptation Twilight Podcast
. They also didn't write a bio when sending in their character exploration, so what they get is AG's batshit word slobber. There's a lesson in there, people.
Archived Explorations:

Upcoming Characters:
Rosalie, James/Victoria, Nessie, Renee.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Reminder: Indies Contests - Put Your Pen to the Page

The Indies First-Time Writer Challenge

So, like a month ago, I bugged you with the announcement that the thoughtful geniuses behind the Indies were back and better than ever with a spunky new contest - The First Time Writers Challenge - and now I am here to tell you that the entries have begun to filter in, and to remind you that all of you first time writers need to crack out of your shell and emerge all fuzzy and happy with your new story. Anyhoo, once again, the details:

Sponsored by: The Indie TwiFic Awards

Judges: Ahelm, CarenL, Gustariana, Hmonster4, LaViePastiche, PastichePen, PurdueLiz, SleepyValentina, SorceressCirce, and Spotzle

Rules and Guidelines

Submissions will be accepted from September 19 12:00 AM EDT to October 27 11:59 PM EDT (based on time stamp of submission via

The theme of the challenge is "First Experiences". Entries may be Canon, AU, AH and of any genre (e.g., angst, humor, family, suspense).

Entry's ratings must correspond to the appropriate equivalent for the entry’s website (e.g. MA, PG-13, R).

Shipping: All ships are acceptable so long as they are tastefully done and well written. Pedophilic pairings and incest pairings are NOT acceptable. Any story found to violate this criteria will be ruled ineligible.

Collaborations are acceptable so long as it is a first time effort for both writers.

Limit of two entries per author or collaboration group.

Entries will be accepted from (FFn), LiveJournal (LJ), Twilighted (T’ed), and Simply Twilight. Please note that we will not be able to add entries submitted via sites other than FFn to the C2.

Entries must be between 2,500 and 15,000 words. The official word count will be assessed during the validation process via copy/paste of the entry (excluding header and AN) into Word 2007. Additionally, searches will be done across the four sites mentioned above to certify that no work by the author pre-exists. If at any time an author is identified to have pre-existing work, the one shot will be disqualified.

Twilight 25 Exception: If you are currently writing for the Twilight 25, and it is your first time writing, you will be able to participate in the First Time Writers Contest.

One-shots may not be expanded until the contest is over.

Submitting an Entry

Submitting an Entry Submissions will be accepted via our website.

All entries must use a “The Indies First Time Writer Challenge” Contest header, which is below:

“The Indies First Time Writer Challenge” One-Shot Contest

Pen name:
Primary Players:
Word Count:

To see other entries in the “The Indies First Time Writer Challenge” contest, please visit the C2:

Special thanks to the For The Love Of Jasper contest for sharing their contest framework with us.

Entries will be validated for quality grammar/punctuation and rules compliance when the entry is submitted. After an entry has been validated, if submitted via FFn, it will be added to the "The Indies First Time Writer Challenge" C2. Authors will be PMed or emailed when their entries have been validated. If an entry is disqualified, the author will be PMed and may modify and resubmit the entry by the submission deadline, if she so chooses.

We encourage any author with need for a beta to check out Project Team Beta.

Categorization of Entries

All Entries will be broken into two master groupings: Rated M and Rated T or Below.
If at the time of voting, we have more than 30 entries under the master category, secondary categories will be created to group the entries. For example, if 40 entries are received, 15 being AU, 20 being AH, and 5 canon, they will distribute that way. If we see more than 75 entries, additional groupings may be announced, based on types of entries received.


After the submission deadline has passed, there will be an open/public voting round featuring all validated entries.

Open Voting will run from November 1 12:00 AM EDT to November 15 11:59 PM EDT.

In addition to Open Voting, there will be a Judges’ Selection round. The judges will assess all submitted entries, and will do so anonymously – all header information (author, title, etc) will be removed from an entry before the judges read it.

All winners will be announced 9pm EST on November 10.

**And in case you didn't get this, Pastiche Pen writes this crap up.

FicDive: Shiny, Pearly, Trashy Jasper

Finding Pearly Pieces of Jasper
Where You'd Least Expect Them...

Diver Alias: Peach (a.k.a. LaViePastiche)

Mission: Jasper paired with…not Alice, the more absurd the pairing, the better.
Parameters: Jasper, M rating

The Pearl: Neverending Math Equation by twanza

Summary: Based in Brooklyn. Edward and Jasper are brothers, each dealing with grief, ego, passion, and the clash between the desire for fame and the pursuit of true art. What role will Bella play? AH/AU. Canon couples with, perhaps, a few excursions. Twilight - Rated: M - English - Hurt/Comfort/Romance - Chapters: 4 - Words: 13,905 - Reviews: 3 - Updated: 9-25-09 - Published: 9-19-09 - Jasper & Edward

Why I Read This:
I failed at absurd Jasper pairings because so few exist and most of them were horribly unrec-able (though I have become terribly intrigued with Jasper/Jane). This one looks like slash because it’s E/J, but it’s not. They are brothers, and while the story says canon couples, it at least begins with tons of non-canon (Carlisle with Elizabeth, Jasper’s ex is Rosalie and he is interested in Bella, Edward is interested in Alice). It’s smart, well-written, and the story is intriguing. Jasper is a tattoo artist who owns a shop in NYC, and he’s hot. Edward is a shaggy musician and math wiz, and he’s hot. He hasn’t seen Jasper in four years and the story starts with him flying to NY and crashing on Jasper’s couch. Definitely deserving of more than the three reviews for four chapters and has the potential to be a very interesting and angsty read.

Diver Alias: Monkey (a.k.a. ElleCC)

Mission: Jasper with no one in particular
Parameters: Jasper, any rating

The Pearl: Jasper’s Musings by Cullen86ers

Summary: What follows are the random musings of one Jasper Whitlock Hale. These are little snip-its of the random things Jasper may be thinking at any time. Rated M because a southern boy loves to cuss! Twilight - Rated: M - English - Humor/General - Chapters: 16 - Words: 14,669 - Reviews: 28 - Updated: 9-24-09 - Published: 6-9-09 - Jasper

Why I Read This:
Okay, this was ridiculously difficult. I went nearly blind after four hours and over four pages of links, trying to find something different. What I finally decided on was this, which is mostly just funny. It’s a series of Jasper’s thoughts, as he might write them in a journal. It sucked me in with some lists: why he loves shit kickers (“Because it reminds me – a little – of my human life”) and Alice (“Because she always grabs my butt and says it’s her favorite hand warmer in the world when I say ‘My butt looks big in these jeans!’”), along with why he hates Emmett (“He is WAY too open about his relationship with Rosalie”), Edward (“Because it is so easy to make him try to block your thoughts - so why the hell doesn’t he do that to begin with?”), and himself (“Because it took me 100 years to walk away”). Those things kept me amused and interested long enough to get to Mama Whitlock’s recipe for peanut butter soup and to read about Jasper’s passion for the “There Once Was a Man from Nantucket” poem (he doesn’t understand why people laugh when he recites it).

What we’re dealing with here is Vampsper, but as you might have guessed, he’s rather OOC. It’s funny with the occasional bittersweet, and, in places, does provide some pretty smart insights into Jasper. He’s a bit self-loathing, which makes me want to snuggle him. I consider my dive to be a success because, even though he’s with Alice, the journal-style entries provide me with the “Jasper alone” type of story for which I was looking. The writing isn’t the tightest, but because of the nature of the fic, I’m okay with that. Also, because I rarely read humor pieces – and none of those center around Jasper – this is a welcome addition to my extensive Jasper library.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Readers Series: Melba87


Wife of Rhage
Mother of FlysWithDragons and ChooChoo (aka Turbo)
US Navy Veteran
College Grad
Twilight FanFiction Addict


How I became a Twilight FanFiction Addict is not an extraordinary tale. I was introduced to Twilight by my twelve year-old (at the time) daughter. At first, I completely dismissed her exuberance as soon as she said the word “vampire.”

Vampires? Really?? Sound familiar?? I finally broke down and read Twilight six months later when my fifty year-old neighborhood walking buddy, the most perfect woman I know, began raving about it. I then voraciously read New Moon and Eclipse. The movie was being filmed at that time, and I discovered TwilightMoms.

When I first discovered FanFiction, there were less than 11,000 stories under the Twilight thread, which I thought was a huge number—how was a girl to choose? But, now there are over 103,000 Twilight fics. I joined Twilighted in its first week when there were less than fifty members. Now Twilighted boasts 72,750 plus members. That blows me away. I can remember freaking out when membership broke 500. It has been amazing to watch our little community of die-hards grow exponentially.


I read Twilight fanfiction because I love Edward Cullen. I don’t consider myself a very reliable reviewer. I think many of the authors I follow around the fandom would agree that Melba87 does drive-bys. I do drive-bys in the forums and drive-bys for reviews. I am the reviewer who says, “I loved the chapter! Thanks for the update.” Rarely, I will say why I loved the chapter or what I loved about a chapter. There are two reasons. First, I am not a writer. After reading a particularly awesome chapter, I have a gazillion thoughts running through my brain. I can never get those thoughts onto paper. Never. I think there must be missing road-signs in my brain that would properly direct those thoughts to the routes that would lead out my fingertips. Ninety percent of what I want to say gets completely lost. Therefore, I am never satisfied that what I write in a detailed review is an accurate reflection of what I think or feel. So, basically I would need a review for my review. This relates to the second reason I don’t leave long reviews.

Reading, I feel, is subjective. It is not math. There are no right or wrong answers. Reading is personal to me. What is significant in a chapter to me may not be significant to someone else. Not only that, the author may not have intended for it to be a significant part of the chapter at all. I regard writers as artists, and just because Melba87 misses the point, it doesn’t mean the point wasn’t more than adequately made to all of the other readers. Moreover, I don’t want my twisted inferences, or my life experiences to discolor or diminish the way a writer views her piece of work. I want to read a story where an author strings specific words together, because those are the words that can best represent her imagination. Plus, I’m a Libra. I can see value in E-VER-Y-THING. It can take me forever to decide. So, if I leave a review that says, “I loved it!” You can bet on it.


I never dive into a story cold. I only read stories that I’ve heard about through the forums, chat, or twitter. I also pay close attention to the delicious banners attached to signatures. They make me wish some of my favorite fics could be turned into movies!!! Most recently, I’ve been relying on the Indie Awards as a resource for some great hidden gems. I also hit up my favorite authors’ Favorites Lists.


I currently have about 170 fics bookmarked on my browser. I estimate I’m reading about half of them. The other half are either complete, have not updated in a long time, or I haven’t started them yet. I suffered a hard drive crash and lost my original bookmarked list. I’m sure there are titles I was reading but couldn’t remember when I started tracking them down. It was then that I discovered the beauty of favorites and signing up for alerts. Heh. I have approx 110 stories that I get alerts for from Fanfiction, and 30 on Twilighted. I am certain that everything I’ve favorited was something that I enjoyed at the time. I only have time for Bella and Edward stories. They are what I enjoy. So, I rarely read anything else. I know I am probably denying myself real pleasure by limiting myself, but people who have time for butt secks say the same thing. I don’t have time for that, either. J

Here are a few completed favorites that I have loved while they were active, and even long after. Snippets and scenes from these fics have accompanied me in my real life, making me giggle, weep and swoon. I consider them “musts reads” in the fandom.

Stories that have kept me glued to my laptop more recently include:

Failure to Thrive by Julesnerd My first Parka Fic — moving with humor

In the Land of Milk & Honey by Mysterious Edward, unpredictable.

A Little Crazy by LolaShoes and tby789One-shot. My second Parka Fic — I hope it’s continued.

Strange Days by jandco It’s jandco, need I say more? Bella in the 1960s. How’s that?

My favorites are here.

I would be remiss without mentioning my favorite story, Sanctuary by Jfly. It is by far the most beautifully crafted story I’ve ever read. It is poetry disguised as prose, or maybe prose disguised as poetry. I can’t decide. Regardless, the figurative language and sensory descriptions put you closer to the characters than you could ever imagine. It is an absolutely stunning and intimate experience that you won’t regret!

Happy reading and Salut!

Author's Blurb by JFly (also here as Thallium81).

I was thrilled to be told that Melba had complimented me, and my story Sanctuary here in the Reader series. She is one of those readers who shows up on my forum thread after a chapter posts and always has thoughtful insight to offer with her jokes and anecdotes about her life, but she also shares real, deep emotion in a raw and eloquent way on the forums. She makes writing this story so much more rewarding for me than it would be if I were writing it all aloney on my owney in a cubby hole of solitude. When I saw her avatar pop up on A Different Forest, I got all giddy. She is so supportive of writers in the Twi-verse - she has never been involved in any tedious cliquey drama - she is a superstar in her own right. Her comments on my story always mean so much to me, so I am please to have the chance now to give a little back to her and say I LOVE MELBA87 right here for all to see!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Fic Rec: Magan Bagan Recs Mens Rea

magan bagan's

I first found this story over on Twilighted and two things caught my eye immediately, the banner and the summary. I wasn’t really sure what to expect, especially with not knowing who Edward’s girlfriend was, but I figured why not give it a try.

That was a smart move.

From the very beginning it’s been a wild ride of emotions, confusion, and anger, one of the most important being Edward’s relationship with his girlfriend. And who might his girlfriend be, you ask? That’s a very good question. His girlfriend, and the woman he ends up on trial for is none other than Tanya.

Now, when I first found out it was Tanya I thought she was going to be the typical whiny, clingy, look how beautiful I am, types, but I was proven wrong again. This Tanya is strong and independent. She’s volatile, intense, and emotional, but that seems to be why she and Edward do so well together. They feed off each other, bring out the worst in each other, but still somehow love each other deeply.

Edward is not your typical Edward either. He still has all of the characteristics that we know and love of this amazing character, he’s self deprecating and loyal and smart. He also has a temper. Edward and Tanya were not ones to bow down to the other and you get a good dose of that as you are introduced to these characters.

"You're not leaving."

"Yes, I am." She gave him one long hard look before sauntering back towards the bed and throwing the lingerie on top. For some reason this angered him to no end. He found himself behind her in an instant, bellowing at her.

"I said you're NOT. FUCKING. LEAVING." He grabbed her shoulders fiercely.

"Get off of me, Edward." She tried to shrug him away, but he gripped her tighter, pulling her against him.

"I said YOU. ARE. NOT. LEAVING." He gave her shoulders a quick jerk and she turned to face him.

With this type of beginning you might be wondering how forbidden-fruit could possibly top herself. And that she does. Not only are you quickly introduced to the quite interesting relationship between these two characters, but you also have it quickly taken away. Edward loses the woman he loves and finds himself in a world of trouble.

Emmett is the detective assigned to the case and after some help from Jasper, Edward has one of the best defense attorney’s on his side. Miss Isabella Swan. She’s beautiful, tough, and extremely intelligent. She’s not a pushover either. Isabella and Edward butt heads almost from the moment they meet, trading witty comebacks and setting a palpable tension in the air.

One of my favorite things about this Edward was that he was not too proud to cry. When the reality that he had lost his girlfriend had set in, he allowed himself that time to grieve and to deal with his loss, or rather wallow in it.

"You've reached Tanya and Edward. We're not home right now, so please leave a message. Spasibo!" A pained cry erupted from Edward's chest, as the sound of her voice split his heart into pieces. The tears came instantly, and Edward slumped into the sofa cushions, burying himself in grief. He retrieved his phone from his pocket, numbly dialing his home phone number again and again, crying as the sound of Tanya's voice reverberated around the empty room. He dialed and redialed until his battery died, his sobs finally quieting down as the house once again fell silent.

Forbidden-fruit has created an amazing story, taking most of the best characteristics, and some of the bad ones, of each of the characters and made them her own. Since you only get a peek into Edward and Tanya’s relationship in the beginning, each chapter reveals a little more into who they were, how they met, and why they stayed together so long.

Each chapter reveals a tiny piece of the puzzle as well. Why is Edward’s memory fuzzy about that night? Who would want to hurt Tanya? Who would want to frame Edward? This fic promises to keep you guessing and forbidden-fruit has not given away any of the details.

So, I’ll leave you with one final question. What do you think happened?

Magan bagan has been a part of the Twilight fandom for a year now and loves it even more so than before. She is the author of such stories as No One Saw the Pain, The Family that Stays Together, For the Love of a King, and A Perfect Twilight. She is also co-host for a Twilight podcast Cullens Court Cast and is involved in many other aspects in the fandom.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

TLYDF Feedback Time: We Want Your Ideas

We Want Your Ideas

So, the Lazy Yet Discerning Ficster has been throwing all sorts of randomness at you for months now, but we've reached the point where we have covered what WE think is useful, but really, we know how that's pretty much useless. Now, we want to know what articles and columns you want to see from us, so please let us know! Make a comment below and tell us what you'd like to see more of. (Then we can harass knowledgeable people into writing the articles...)

Friday, September 25, 2009

CharacterExploration: Angela - The Best Friend You Could Ever Ask For

Angela Webber

Everybody loves Angela Weber.

No really, they do. This fact leads me to question, why do we not see much Angela in fan fiction? When I saw that Angela was up for character exploration, I was determined to find out why. I wracked my brain try to find Angelas. See, I am not a writer of fan fiction, but a reader. I read a LOT of fic, so in order to find Angelas, I turned to my authors. I am extremely grateful for the amazing authors that took time out and responded to help me out! We all agreed that Angela is the least utilized character in Twilight fan fiction.

Canon Angela: What could have been…

Angela seems to be underutilized, even by Mrs. Meyer herself. She’s such a great secondary character that was never really developed. As we hear from Edward in Midnight Sun, Angela is really the only student at Forks High that has pure intentions toward Bella. As
I do think of Angela as Bella’s one true protective human friend who has her back.
Angela and Ben are the only humans that overrode the natural instinct to avoid the Cullens and attempted to form friendships. Unfortunately, Angela is left behind as Bella enters the world of the supernatural.

Quote by

She’s a foil to Jessica (comparing the ditzy to with the sensible, the immature with the mature, the selfish with the kind), she is a sounding board for Bella (eg: Eclipse), she is use to show more facets of Edward and Bella’s characters. I think mainly she is used this way-as a means for other main characters to develop and expand.

Perceptions: Saint Angela

It seems we all see Angela the same way. Almost every description of her was the same. She’s honest, trustworthy, and loyal; she’s our dream friend and all around great person. She’s that friend you haven’t seen in years, but makes it feels like yesterday. She’ll defend you, pick you up when you’ve been knocked down. She listens to you, supports you no matter what, and gives the best advice. My first thoughts were that she is typically very similar to Bella, and she is always what Bella needs her to be. She adapts to each situation as a character. It was actually
’s Bella in chapter 4
A Murmur of Fire in the Vein
that got me thinking more about how Angela is portrayed.

The crowds I had run with had always been made up of, well, Angelas. Studious, hard- working, straight-laced kids. They weren’t opposed to fun, but they usually had it in moderate doses.

In other words, kids like me.

Honestly, we may have Angela Weber on a pedestal, and it hard for us to think of her as anything other than saintly. As
I think it is a tough road to characterize Angela in a way other than a good person, always there for Bella because to change her character is almost more of a stretch than to make Edward a bad boy.
In my opinion, she’s exactly right, and this is the primary reason we don’t see more of Angela in fan fiction. Most authors are afraid to use her, and I honestly understand why. We expect Jessica to be self centered, Lauren to be a bitch, Mike to be over eager. Anytime you stretch beyond that you have to work hard to prove that character to your reader.
put it best by saying:
I have to say, the few stories where she’s totally different (i.e. slutty, snarky, bitchy, etc.) I find pretty disturbing and somewhat off-putting.
Angela is not a character that is used just to have a recognizable name. Fandom writers use her very carefully and really put some thought into her character. Because of these reasons, it is rare to find Angela used in fics.

We routinely see her in background capacity, but she is rarely brought to the forefront of anything as more than a caricature of a nice girl. She is the sweet matronly good girl no matter which fic you're reading. That in and of itself is interesting, because she is the least prone to the bastardization of fanfiction.

Fic Angela: We couldn’t have done it without you

She’s the best friend these Bella’s could ever have. Without Angela, these stories just wouldn’t be the same. She’s imperative to Bella’s decision making processes and who knows where things would have gone without her guidance. Typically these Angelas carry all of our favorite canon characteristics, but expanded. Here are some excellent uses of Angela.

The most popular Angela right now in fan fiction (determined by a
) is in
A Murmur of Fire in the Vein
. After an isolating relationship with Edward, and a terrible break up Bella desperately needs someone outside of the Cullen’s to rely on, and Angela is it. She’s honest and unbiased and she makes Bella look at the difficult issues in her relationship with Jasper. She’s pivotal, and no other character could fill her shoes.

Coming to Terms
GinnyW 31
was a very close second. Bella’s in a new place and quickly finds herself in a difficult situation and her assistant Angela quickly becomes her best friend. And in an interesting twist, Angela knew the Cullen’s first. Ginny says:
I wanted all of the people that Bella surrounded herself with to be closely tied to the Cullens, but for Bella not to know that. And really, that's because it gives off the sense that her encounter with Edward was fate and there was a certain inevitability tied to their relationship. So, that's why Angela was tied to the Cullens. And I like her as a steadfast, reliable friend.

There would be no
Not Like This
without Angela. After a chance encounter with a shockingly different Bella than she remembers, Angela drops everything in order to save Bella. If it weren’t for Angela, Bella would not survive. This really is a beautifully written story with a great example of who Angela is.

Hydraulic Level 5
really shows Bella’s ability to have a life independent of Edward. Gondolier says:
Through Angela and their dreams for SwanWeber, she survives a devastating divorce and becomes stronger, more confident, more able to stand on her own two feet.

The perfect example of super supportive Angela is
The Trip Home
. Angela is accepting of Bella’s situation instantly. MsKathy says:
Angela in TTH is definitely Bella’s safe place. Bella sees her as a peer, and actually someone she looks up to,
Angela really helps Bella accept herself and her situation for what it really is, and encourages her in her decisions.

Outside of the Box: She’s Not Your Average Angela

Every now and then we have author’s who are brave enough to explore Angela in a new way.

The Wingman
- Well, Nina says it best “Well in the Wingman she is not canon AT ALL, mainly b/c it'll be a cold day in hell before I attempt to write anyone in canon. She's the Reverend's daughter BUT, she's also Jake's former love, they used to skinny dip and run around nudie. She's also got tattoos and loves to have sex and is very open about it.”

The Caged Bird
Kristen Nicole
- Although she hasn’t been seen much, matronly librarian Angela is a great friend to Bella, and helps her find an escape from the religiously fanatical Renee.

Bitter Sweet Symphony
- We see Angela here as someone with a past relationship with Edward.

- Although she plays a small role, it is a very important one. She’s mother to who we believe is Ben.

- Bartender, friend, and ying to Emmett’s yang.

And of course, check out the entries for the
Love for the Unloved

Advocates for Angela

If I learned one thing in examining Angela, it is that we would all like to see more of her, and not just as a secondary character.
Angela’s goodness doesn’t usually translate into good conflict, so she gets overlooked. I’d like to see someone take her and go past her kindness and relationship with Ben. Sure, she can be the nice girl with the good guy, but she’s bound to have opinions and feelings that aren’t bordering on sainthood.
She couldn’t have said it better! Somewhere along the way in doing research I have become the Angela advocate, so I urge you writers-next time, consider Angela! In the words of
Miss Boo Boo Kitty
It is sad that Angela doesn't get enough face time in fic, but maybe with this character exploration more people will think about using her more. I can say that since I first read this email two days ago, it's made me think of using Angela a lot more than I ever have in the past. Thank you for that!
Angela is a great character with unlimited potential-show her some love!
is a twitter obsessed, author stalking, fan fic fanatic who has written nothing, but reads everything! This is her very first article, so go easy! (and who, despite warnings, did not acquire the herp while writing this article lol)
Archived Explorations:

Upcoming Characters:
Rosalie, Paul/Quil/Jared, James/Victoria.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

CharacterExploration: Jacob - Not Your Typical Prince Charming

Jacob Black
Krum Cake

In any other story, Jacob could have been the hero.

Isn’t that what heroes are supposed to do? To fight for the ones they love, no matter the cost? Turn the tables and look at the world of Twilight from a new perspective, where Jacob is no longer the trusty friend, the other man, or the enemy. From this new point-of-view, he is the protagonist. He’s in love with a woman, but there is another man—a man that Jacob, for reasons he hardly understands, was raised to hate. He sees how hurt the woman he loves is when this other man leaves, and he sees that being with the other man means death for the woman he loves. Things are rarely ever black and white, but when the situation is skinned to the bone, there remain just two options: to give up, or to fight for her.

It’s true that there is sometimes beauty and honesty and even catharsis in giving up, like Julia Roberts in My Best Friend’s Wedding. But although Jacob could see how happy Bella was with Edward, he could also see
elements of their relationship that were unhealthy. Giving up would have meant watching Bella continue in a relationship with a man who used to sneak into her room and watch her sleep at night, and how could he find any beauty in that? So he fought. He stumbled along the way, some of his tactics were questionable, and he ultimately failed. But he never gave up on the woman he loved.

Jacob could have easily been the hero of Twilight. But this is truly the age of the vampire, and when his story is told from another perspective wherein he is just a supporting character rather than the protagonist, he doesn’t stand a chance.

He is perhaps one of the most abused characters in this fandom, second only to Mr. Michael Newton. So I’m prepared to get my hands dirty and my knuckles bloodied as I dig to uncover the many faces of Jacob Black as we know him in canon and as he is represented in fanfiction.

Understanding Jacob: a History

The best way to understand canon Jacob is to take a look at his life and see what events and other crazy shenanigans shaped him into who he is.


  • His mom dies in a car crash when he is young, leaving his father, Billy, to raise three children on his own. HARDCORE SUCKAGE.
  • He grows up with two older sisters—who probably talk about tampons and men’s asses and *NSYNC all the freaking time.
  • Every now and then he chills with his dad’s friend’s daughter, who seems pretty cool and would rather talk about Boo Radley and Stuart Little than Justin Timberlake.
  • His sister Rebecca actually ran off to Hawaii with some surfer dude in order to escape the pain of Sarah Black’s death. There are some buried emotional issues in this family, for sure.


  • Heyyyy-o, Boo Radley chick is here to stay, and she got rather pretty over the years. NICE.
  • And she flirts with him!
  • …just to get information out of him. Ouch.
  • His dad sends him on this weirdo mission to go stalk Bella at her prom and warn her to stay away from the Cullens or…he’ll disapprove of her? Whatever. Jacob gets money out of it.

New Moon:

  • After he hears about her crazy depression, Jacob is randomly approached by Bella one day, and she has motorcycles and is all, “LET’S DO THIS!”
  • They hang. A lot.
  • Like seriously, a lot. They do homework, chill in the garage, and IT IS AWESOME.
  • Whoa. She’s a girl. And she’s pretty, smart, funny, and…holy shit…he’s starting to really fall for her.
  • Meanwhile, his two best friends magically transform into major jackasses and stop hanging with him in order to prance around with dickhead Sam Uley, and that sucks. Hard.
  • So on one hand, he’s dealing with Bella, who is hurting and very fragile, and he’s learning that piecing a heartbroken girl back together is insanely hard work. And on the other hand, he’s losing the only other friends he has to something he doesn’t quite understand…
  • Until…SHABAM! Jacob the man-wolf emerges, and
    suddenly his whole world has turned upside-down, because WTF IS GOING ON, and his brain is overloaded with information and he feels like he might be going a little bit crazy and suddenly he understands Sam and Embry and Quil’s behavior, except it still doesn’t really make sense, because HOLY SHIT HE CAN TRANSFORM INTO A WOLF, THIS SHIT IS CRAZY.
  • Also, he is suddenly a buff twenty-five-year-old (physically) whose internal temperature is 108.9 degrees, which is an incredibly convenient excuse to run around La Push shirtless. How can life suck so much while being SO AWESOME at the same time? And don’t lie. We all wish we could wake up one morning and be, like, super hot. You’d run around shirtless, too.
  • Meanwhile, his friend’s dad dies of a heart attack and Bella, the girl whom he is growing to love, flings herself off a cliff. Just another day in the life.
  • Just when it seems like things are going well with Bella, her ice cold vampire boyfriend comes back and she’s happy again and all Jacob can think is FML. For serious.


  • The girl he loves doesn’t love him, but his mortal enemy instead.
  • He’s like this giant hormonal sixteen-year-old stuck in the body of a twenty-five-year-old, and the only thing even remotely close to action that he’s getting is the rare glimpse of Leah Clearwater naked after phasing. And seriously? What a bitch. He wouldn’t touch her with a ten foot pole.
  • BAM, totally injured by a crazy newborn vamp, no time to think about this shit.
  • Except she makes him think about it anyway by visiting him while he’s healing and…what’s that? Do his ears deceive him? She loves him? HOLY FUCK.
  • Oh, but she can’t live without Edward.
  • And she’s marrying the leech?
  • Essentially, his brain explodes, and he goes all feral wolf on everyone and disappears into the woods.

Breaking Dawn:

  • Woman he loves marries his worst enemy, blah blah, this is old news by now, but it still hurts like hell.
  • Oh, and now’s she’s back from the honeymoon and she’s preggo and dying. Sweet. (But not really.)
  • Edward, after having gone over the deep end, tells Jacob that he can…father Bella’s babies? WTF? Okay, he loves her and all, but even he’s got to admit that that’s just a tad creepy.
  • All he wants to do is imprint, dammit, because that would be way easier than loving someone who is going to be killed by a demon fetus or be turned into a vampire or possibly both.
  • Wish granted! He imprints! On…the demon baby. OH HELL. Life will not cut him a break.
  • His best friend, the woman he used to love, is now a cold, dead vampire. Which means she smells gross.
  • AND, in the midst of all of this, he broke free of his original pack and became Alpha of his own pack, which totally wasn’t stressful and overwhelming at all, probably.
In short, it’s not easy being Jacob Black. Not by a long shot.

So, that’s what we’ve been given. How has this translated into fanfiction?


This is a role that Jacob fits into quite snugly. Throughout the series, Bella often referred to him as her “personal sun,” and he has a personality that matches that description. He offers large smiles, envelops with warm hugs, has a lightening fast sense of humor, and genuinely cares about those around him. BFF Jacob is the self-same Jacob who sacrificed working on his beloved Rabbit in order to fix Bella’s bikes.

This version of Jacob is almost always cast in the role of supporting character, there to encourage the protagonist and to provide comic relief in the form of his snarky wit. He is generally “always the friend and never the boyfriend,” which may or may not bother him, depending on the plot. Out of all the
variations of Jacob, he is the closest thing to canon, and most often reflects pre-transformation Jacob, who is warmer and more happy-go-lucky than post-transformation Jacob.

But just because he is playing the best friend archetype doesn’t mean that BFF Jacob has to be a cliché or cookie cutter character. We’ve all seen those movies where the best friend is a 2D plot device used simply to prove that the main character isn’t a friendless loser. But sometimes the best friend is just as complex as the main character, if not more. One of the most well-known examples of this is in
Innocent, Vigilant, Ordinary
. In the story, Jacob is Bella’s other half, but in a way that is more platonic than romantic, which is something both characters are learning the hard way. Jacob is Bella’s best friend, but there is a depth to his character that transcends the usual best friend cliché.

A more lighthearted portrayal of BFF Jacob can be found in
Shuffle, Ball, Change
. Jacob once again plays the supporting character to protagonist Seth, and his sharp, teasing sense of humor shines in a way that is far from flat and enhances the personality of the story itself. The following excerpt is taken from a scene in Seth’s point-of-view in which he and Jacob are discussing the fact that Seth, a high school teacher, just—horror of horrors—imprinted on one of his students:

Does it really matter where she sits?” Jake asked exasperatedly. “When she turns eighteen and is no longer sitting at the back of the classroom you can take it from there.” You know your life’s pretty messed up when a guy with a milk mustache starts making sense.

“Man up,” I repeated. “I can do that.”

“Good.” Jake grinned as he grabbed my head and gave me a noogie. “And if you can’t I heard that the forecast for tomorrow is cloudy with a chance of balls. Maybe, just maybe, you’ll get lucky and find a pair.”

I flipped him off. “Or I could ask Nes to lend me yours.”

“Son of a—” He made a swipe for me but I easily dodged it.

“By the way, I need a favour.”

“Brother, mother, psychologist. What next? Does he need me to shit a rainbow too?” Jake mumbled, turning his gaze to one of the many overpriced ceiling fans that decorated Chez Wolf. “What’cha need, kid?”

In spite of the fact that we may have teased the crap out of each other, when it came down to it we were brothers in every way that really mattered. We always had each other’s backs.

The Creeper

We’ve all bumped into him in fanfiction. Creeper Jacob is a severe distortion of his canon character and his existence is similar to that of a vicious rumor: somewhere, deep down, there is a tiny seed of truth, but it has been so twisted and convoluted that its origins are hardly recognizable.

It would be incredibly biased of me to ignore the roots of Creeper Jacob’s many incarnations. It’s not enough to simply say, “People just hate Jacob.” Why, exactly? Here are my speculations, all of which come from canon events:

He loved Bella even when she didn’t love him back. He kept hoping even though she repeatedly tried to enforce the fact that their relationship was purely platonic. While I previously cited this as
behavior of a heroic protagonist, it could be argued that this is behavior of a guy who just won’t get a clue. And that’s just ew.

He purposely got Bella in trouble with Charlie when he was angry by leaving the motorcycles in her front yard. With fronds like these, who needs anemones, right?

He kissed Bella and she just took it. Then, when she punched him for it, he laughed in her face. This is not exactly honorable behavior.

But Jacob’s biggest crime is not one that he had any control over:

He was not Edward.

Honestly, Jacob never stood a chance. After Edward enchanted audiences everywhere in Twilight, there was no turning back. And even when Edward left Bella, most readers’ loyalties still lay with him. And suddenly Jacob was just there. For Jacob, the events of New Moon were simply life, but from a reader’s standpoint, he was just another obstacle in the way of Bella and Edward’s Happily Ever After. And it appears as though a majority of readers could never really forgive him for that.

And thus Creeper Jacob and all of his cousins were born. Rapist Jacob, Abusive Jacob, Stalker Jacob, Stupid Jacob, Rageaholic Jacob, Evil Husband Jacob, Kidnapper Jacob, Beer Gut Jacob…the list goes on and on.

These are not fair portrayals of Jacob. They’re just not.

But acknowledging and understanding the problem is half of the battle, if you’ll excuse my use of cliché. I’m not saying it’s necessary for Jacob to be a golden boy in every story, because not even Edward gets that much reverence in this fandom. I can’t make anybody like Jacob and I can’t stop people from using him as a villain. But where’s the harm in having a well-developed, complex villain? That is completely respectable.

I feel like Creeper Jacob is a good lesson for all writers. Each story, whether it is a published novel or a piece of fanfiction, needs its fair share of unlikeable characters. And while it’s fun to mercilessly write about bitchy cheerleaders or brainless jocks or rapist werewolves, stories begin to lose credibility when some characters are given thorough, deep personalities and others are just depthless plot devices meant to purposely rile the emotions of readers.

Love Jacob or hate him. Just develop him as a character, please.

The Annoyance

This sounds negative at first, but believe it or not, Annoying Jacob is different from Creeper Jacob in a million different ways. Annoying Jacob is that snarky guy hanging around in the backdrop, pushing everyone’s buttons and pissing the hell out of them simply because he can. And most importantly, he’s funny…in that “Oh my God, ahaha, I’m dying, but no, seriously, I want to punch you in the face” kind of way.

We all know a guy like Annoying Jacob. He’s not exactly your friend, and you like to roll your eyes at him a lot, but sometimes when you’re lying in bed and you can’t sleep, your thoughts turn to him for a second and you go, “Goddamn, that guy’s fucking hilarious…the bastard.”

He’s usually seen bugging the crap out of Leah or even Rosalie, but that’s not to say a fic featuring Jacob directing all his poisonous snark at Jasper wouldn’t be absolutely priceless.

Kobe Grace
’s Jacob is pitch-perfect in her Leah-centric story
Waiting for the Sky to Fall
in that he is the perfect mix of annoying and caring.
He’s moody and nosy, but there’s no denying his concern for Leah. It’s sweet, even if you want to punch him sometimes. And to think, he’s been confusing people since he was nine freaking years old:

"I hate fourth grade,” Jacob exclaimed dramatically as he neared.

“Already?” said Quil. “It’s only been a week.”

“I don’t care — I hate fourth grade so much. I won’t make it to the end of the year.” He looked at Quil and Embry solemnly. “You guys, if I don’t make it, you can have all my Digimon cards.”

Leah tilted her head in his direction. “What’s his problem?”

“Mr. Wright told the fourth-graders that they’re doing times-ing with two digits this year,” explained Embry, who himself was in fifth grade. “Jake here doesn’t think he can handle it.”

“What?” Leah rolled her eyes and smiled. “Aw, Jake, it’s not so bad. You just have to know your tables real well. And then just make sure that you keep track of the order you’re doing the numbers in.”

“But I can’t do that! You should see the homework Mr. Wright handed out today — it’s crazy. There are numbers everywhere!”

“It is math, Jake,” Quil pointed out.

“Yeah, but it’s crazy killer math. Math that kills. Did you know,” he added grimly, “that math is what killed my mom?”

Okay, seriously? I’m torn between punching the kid and hugging him.

The Romantic

Romantic Jacob is probably the exact antithesis of Creeper Jacob. He is generally a leading player in romance stories, paired with either Bella or Nessie.
He has all of the warmth and teddy bear qualities of BFF Jacob with just one exception: he’s not just in the background.

Describing Romantic Jacob with words just doesn’t do him justice. You have to feel him.

has a number of one-shots and drabbles that make my heart ache with their beauty. Yes, most of her stories are Jacob/Bella, and they are gorgeous. They’re incredibly emotional without being over-the-top, and Jacob is both beautiful and in-character and heartbreaking at times. Although all of her stories are worth devouring, I strongly suggest
Hate is a Strong Word
For the Last Time

Another great writer of Romantic Jacob is
. And while her portrayal of Jacob throughout her various one-shots might not seem incredibly romantic at first, it feels real. She writes him as a true teenage boy, and Bella as a true teenage girl, and there is beauty in their connection. Jacob’s romance is all in the way he speaks, jokes, calls her “Bells.” Her stories often sting of heartache, like
Better and Worse
, but it’s not all hopeless, such as in the aptly named
Happy Ending

He’s not your typical Prince Charming; he’s just a teenage boy who doesn’t always say the right things and can’t fully keep his emotions in check, but he makes you melt, absolutely melt.
Krum Cake
’s loyalties lie with Team Quileute, thus making her an awkward black sheep of the Twilight fandom. She is an unmotivated, procrastinating college girl and the author of
Well, This Sucks: Life According to Seth
, which means she spends her free time writing some fictional guy’s diary. She is obviously not a loser at all.
Archived Explorations:

Upcoming Characters:
Angela, Rosalie, Paul/Quil/Jared, James/Victoria.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Random Admin Rec: How My Life Was Ruined in 14 Days

First off, confession.

This post is completely, genius-ly biased. Moon.witche is an admin on this blog and our beloved and sarcastic friend, so this is biased. Biased. Biased—but like I said before, it’s a genius, mastermind-like sort of bias. Anyway, we were so bloody giddy about Moon.witche’s new fic that we just had to do something to get it out of our collective systems (and to make everyone else get it into their collective systems).

AngstyG: It makes me want to get a BlackBerry and ask strange, handsome men for promptly scheduled sex. And Edward has no catch. He's just the normal dude being propositioned for sexin. Go Bella.

PastichyP: Because Bella’s determined-little-girl, doesn’t-get-it characterization is just funtuckulously hilarious. OH, and Alice is a Rainbow Bright world-peace-now! child, "Bob" owns me, and Edward funnily enough seems to be the only normal one.

Angel: It’s funny and realistic, Bella is so defined, Edward is interesting—I want to know more about him, and I suspect that Bella and all her laid out plans will not turn out the way she thinks it will—although I have no idea where it's gonna go.

Anyhoo, other side information, Moon.witche has pre-written a great deal of this, and Limona is her awesome beta, so really just go read this fine work of smutty comedy. It’s two chapters in, and it has us making impromptu serenades already…

(And yes, Moony-dot-witch-with-an-e, we do hope this will be suitable bribery for you
to email us the next six chapters in advance. Thank you very much. Now, clicky-clicky.)

Pastiche Pen is a loverly admin of TLYDF, peddler of HP slash, and author of such favorites as The Nymph and the Waterfall, Waxing Crescent, Sin and Incivility, and If Love Could Light a Candle. Send her a nun and a gnome. Or a nun-ish gnome. Or.. a gnome-ish nun? Hmm...

Monday, September 21, 2009

Reader's Series: Lucette21

I think that, in general terms, the Twilight fan(fic)dom can be divided into writers and readers who have long been involved in other fandoms and those who had never even heard of fanfic until the Twilight Saga was published. I fall firmly into the latter category and arrived later than most.

Like many others, my introduction to fanfiction (via and from there to Twilighted and so on) began with my dissatisfaction with Breaking Dawn – not just the fades to black but also the no sacrifices / too neatly tied up / happily ever afters for everyone resolution. I can’t say that the endings of other series of books haven’t left me wanting more but I cannot particularly remember ever having been left wanting something completely different the way that I felt in the wake of Breaking Dawn. It was around this time, quite soon after publication when the internet backlash was in full swing and people were talking about returning books, that I started looking around for an alternative and found, via a board on, a recommendation for an alternative Breaking Dawn.

That fic was Waiting for Dawn by Alice laughed and I am ashamed to admit that I most likely didn’t review a single chapter. It wasn’t because I didn’t enjoy it but I think it was long since completed at that time and I thought What’s the point? She won’t care what I think when she is already finished. I’m actually still unsure on the etiquette of that situation, so if anyone wants to let me know I am all ears.

Following on from this I exclusively kept to the AU side of the fence for a long while (a lot of New Moon/Edward never came back scenarios), occasionally reviewing but mostly just keeping a low profile, reading completed works and really, while it may have been a guilty pleasure for me it wasn’t anywhere close to an obsession until I discovered Twilighted. I should add that at this point I was still leading the life of a technophobe – no computer at home, no internet connection, no Blackberry – any reading I did was after work at a dodgy internet café around the corner from my flat and they closed at 9pm so there was no opportunity for all night fic marathons.

It was around this time that I discovered AH fics, I can’t remember what drew me there but I quickly realised that two hours online per day was just not going to cut it for me so I treated myself to a laptop, got my broadband hooked up and essentially let my penchant for fanfiction descend into a full blown addiction. Aside from much freer access to my drug of choice, not much changed. I kept quiet, I lurked on the forums and my reviews were at best spotty and usually not all that much more than a “That was great, update soon please” (well, at least I said ‘please’!), occasionally resulting in a “Thanks for reviewing” response. I was enjoying myself but I still wasn’t satisfied because I had no-one to share my excitement with. I can’t talk about other people’s experiences but it’s been a long time since I had a hobby that I was enthusiastic about which I could share with others – most of the things that interest me are fairly solitary activities and I am about as far from sporty as you can get. Fanfic, by its very nature, is something people tend to hide away, it’s regarded as a guilty pleasure by a lot of readers who swear they would never want their ‘real life’ friends to know what they spend their free time doing; so when you get an update that you’ve been dying for or have been reduced to tears by an angsty cliff-hanger, who can you turn to?

It was when the need to share this experience finally outweighed my discomfort at outing myself, even under the guise of a pseudonym, that two important things happened. I realised I had to bite the bullet and de-lurk on the forums and I needed to start giving back and the way to do this was to start taking the time to write reviews with a little more substance. So the next fic I started, I made myself a promise - I would review every chapter, even though it was already 8 or so chapters along and I would try to let the author know which passages resonated with me, what I thought or hoped might happen and thank them for updating – and shock, horror – for the first time ever I actually received a personal response. The fic was the wonderful What You Thought You Knew by hmonster4 and that little bit of assurance that what I had written had made a difference to her meant the world to me and gave me the confidence to start interacting with people in the fandom, mostly via the Twilighted Forums.

I am such a stereotypical bean counter – I am giggling as I write this thinking that the precedents of all the peaks and limited troughs of my fanfic history could be charted very well – HMonster4 led me to Lucky Charm by profmom72 (her beta and now co-author) and then on to their collaboration Breakfast at Tiffany’s, a competition one-shot that was later developed into a multi-chapter story of the same name which became, perhaps, my favourite AH fic. This presented me with an opportunity to be part of a forum thread from the very beginning which meant that I actually got to be part of a lot of fun ranging from good natured teasing of fellow BATgirls to posting pictures of JFK Jnr to participating in a crackfic epilogue competition (my first and only foray into writing). It also introduced me to other readers who liked and were interested in a range of fics similar to those I enjoyed and, most importantly, weren’t going to judge me for reading fanfic because it was exactly why they were there too!

A more recent experience which I was fortunate to be involved in was the Indie Twific Awards, a groundbreaking effort to promote excellent but underappreciated fics and writers, conceived and executed by HMonster4 and Gustariana. I was privileged to be asked to be a validating judge for the competition and it really opened my eyes to what you miss out on if the only thing you look at when searching for new fics is the number of reviews or what is high profile at the time. Being part of the validation process and reading for the judges round of the awards also helped me develop a better critical appreciation of good character development, pacing and originality which in turn has helped me become a better reviewer, although I still need to improve my strike rate.

It sounds like a cliché to say it but discovering Twi-fic has really changed my life in many ways, favourably for the most part. I came for the fanfic but I stayed for the sense of community I found and the friends I have made and I really do believe that most of that wouldn’t have happened had I not received a review reply which made me feel that even as ‘just’ a reader my opinion was valued.

Author's Blurb by HMonster4

I published my very first fan fic on 12/29/2008.

I received my first review from Lucy on 1/12/2009. She found me via a mutual friend, Gemmabobella, who rec’d my story on her Lost and Found thread on Twilighted.

That day was the beginning of a beautiful relationship. And the cause of stains on many a shirt thanks to early morning coffee snarfs…but I digress.

Lucy quickly evolved from a tentative reader to a major advocate. When ProfMom and I entered Manyafandom’s Valentine’s Day Contest, Lucy declared herself a major fan of our one shot, and encouraged, cajoled and did everything short of plead to convince us to expand it into a multi-chapter story.

The minute we hit publish on the multi chapter version of Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Lucy had a thread live on Twilighted, and was out beating the bushes for readers. She left us epic reviews (if you totaled the word count on her review for every chapter, it would probably be 15k words – no joke), encouraged us, cheered us on, speculated, even threatened to hunt down a character in the story and do him bodily harm.

While she might have been BAT girl #1, her loyalty and support has gone well beyond BAT. Whenever either I or ProfMom start a new story, she is first on the scene to create forum threads, spread the word, and be the best cheerleader anyone could ask for. She’s done that for others too, passionately supporting stories, and most recently becoming a beta for Finding Home by Jennde. It’s a great fit for her.

If I had to say one thing about Lucy beyond her support, her enthusiasm, and her reviews, it’s that she gets it. She looks beyond the word to find the meaning. She picks up on nuances, references, and thoughts that many people would gloss over. I tried to pick out my favorite Lucy review…and I looked through all of her reviews (Luce – for the record, you’ve left me 102 of them) trying to pick out my favorite one. And you know what? I can’t. They all make me smile, make me laugh, and bring back great memories.

She may have started out as a reader, but she’s become a friend. She’s been there through all the Ward incarnations, Benedict Redneck, The Met, treks through ruins, and she always surprises and inspires me. When I hit publish, there are a handful of people I always hold my breath for feedback from, and she’s one of them. I don’t consider a chapter or a story complete unless it has her input, constructive criticism, or in one case, an image of smoldering ashes.

Thanks for being you, Lucy. And thanks for making this so much fun.

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