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trek: team

Dear yuletide author

First of all, thank you for writing for me! I hope you'll take as much or as little direction as you desire from this letter.

My tastes for what I like/dislike seem to vary from fandom to fandom (though it's often a matter of varying for the better in that I sometimes surprise myself by liking something different) and it's hard for me to start with a more general list, but to take a crack at it:

-Rating preferences: the whole spectrum from G-rated gen to explicit PWP is fine (if pressed, I'd say I prefer semi-explicit to super-graphic, but really I'll read anything). I've got no preference over POV/tense/narrative style, just use whatever comes to you!
-I love UST, I love some pining, I love some angst. I love intense friendship stories. I love any kind of amusing/surprising/touching interactions between characters that don't usually get one-on-one time in canon. I can go for pretty much any AU premise, be it fork-in-the-road or a completely different setting, especially those with arguable genre/trope connections to the original canon (characters being drawn into similar occupations or conflicts even when it's a futuristic sci-fi world, for example). However I do often have issues with fix-it fics that are only written for the sake of being fix-it fics; let's just say I'd rather read an altered ending to something because it's an interesting place to go with it, not simply because it's happier. You are welcome to poke around my LJ or my pinboard bookmarks or my goodreads (or even my tumblr, which is under the same username) to see what fandoms I'm familiar with if the idea of doing a crossover appeals to you.
-Though it works for me in a PWP, I do not generally go for super-fluffy slice-of-life curtain fic that has more emphasis on being in love than on falling in love. I'm more interested in first times, or complicated/irresolute attraction, or established relationships where there is still some level of conflict to be resolved; I'm hardly saying I wouldn't like a happy ending, but once they get very comfortable together for the majority of their story, I can get pretty bored. I'm full of exceptions: If the main point of the story isn't so much the relationship and especially if there's a lot of humor, it works for me. A good dividing line is that there's just something moving the story along besides "Look how together they are."
-To be on the safe side I'll say I'm not into A/B/O, mpreg, or any body fluid kinks. Also, don't ask me why, but I'm not crazy about sex toys, so if anybody's being tied up I'd rather it be with something just lying around than with a pair of handcuffs from the adult shop (though, strap-ons...those are fine). The more spontaneous the sex seems, the better.
-I can handle underage, dubcon, noncon, torture and incest, provided those are treated realistically rather than how you might write it as more of a kink, if that makes sense. Don't be scared to include a character death if you feel it's necessary to drive the story. Infidelity I'm a little more sensitive about but maybe not by much...Certain characters I've requested are already guilty of ongoing affairs, but for others it may not seem so fitting to have it be more than just a one-time mistake, if it makes sense for them at all; I will trust your judgment on that.

Please forgive my TL;DR on some of these fandoms - I'm trying to be as specific as possible in case you like specifics; and on the other hand don't be discouraged if I didn't talk as much about the fandom you matched me on as some of the others, it really doesn't reflect any preferences ;)

Dublin Murder Squad Series - Tana French

First of all if you're considering or assigned to writing something DMS for me but you haven't read all the books, you should be fine--I've read and loved them all--but some of the details here could confuse or spoil you. I've tried to cover at least something relevant to the whole tag set but if I don't discuss your favorite I hope that doesn't deter you from writing an idea that really inspires you.

In terms of shipping I love Cassie/Rob, Mick/Richie (requited/unrequited/deeply suppressed, whatever), Frank/Liv, Frank/Rosie (Liv's or Rosie's POV with Frank would be lovely), and any of the sort of messy/unrequited/dysfunctional stuff that was or could have been going on with those kids at Whitethorn House. If going for platonic relationships, all of the main partnerships are gold, as are any of Frank's professional or (positive) family relationships (How well is his relationship with Holly going to survive the fallout of TSP? Is he going to be able to tell Olivia that he actually thought their daughter might be capable of murder or just stew in guilt over it?). I'm not a fan of Cassie/Sam given that I feel her commitment to him was (and I'd even guess is kinda supposed to feel) rushed, but I don't have any big problem with Sam in general and you shouldn't feel any need to completely disregard their relationship.

Some more details about specific pairings...
-I'm not sure whether or not Mick and Richie could ever make up especially as they won't be running into each other professionally, but if you're open to the slashy interpretation I could kind of see some angsty situation where Richie sees him around somewhere and tries being contrite and just-seeing-if-you're-doing-alright and Mick is still so deeply bitter about everything that they somehow end up angrily screwing in the back of somebody's car...? I'd also love to get a glimpse into what Richie was thinking about Scorcher just before or throughout BH, since it's hard to imagine him being extremely fond of Scorcher from the very beginning.
-For Cassie and Rob's relationship I would love anything that kind of rounds out Rob by showing more of him balanced through her perspective, like her first/ongoing impressions of him after she joins the squad. If you're into alternate universes I'd actually love something a little out-there for these two (Irish War of Independence/Civil War AU? Dystopian detectives? Not that I wouldn't love those for any of these characters!). For the record even though I ship C/R pretty hard I do see it as so heavily built on what was a deceivingly simple but very real friendship that even in an AU setting I don't really see them blatantly crushing on each other from the start even if there is some very subtle UST...Of course, if they were to somehow reconnect a few years into the future, the relationship would probably have to be quite different, and I'm definitely open to the idea of reworking that dynamic in a kind of bittersweet way that emphasizes the people they can't be anymore but also makes it possible to start over.
-I must admit to fully believing Rafe was at some time very close to/protective of Justin even if it was something that mostly started with wanting to get his ego stroked (socially or sexually, I mean), or maybe he was even somewhat more romantically invested in Lexie than anyone would have guessed; the idea that those were the two he actually opened himself up to the most is just so tantalizingly tragic, given where everything was headed.

Also: I did love how Conway and Moran worked together, but I'm hesitant to request anything that could be broadly contradicted in the next novel (which has been confirmed to be from Antoinette's POV with them partnered up), so if you wanted to use them I might prefer you do something that takes place within or close to the events of TSP (maybe exploring whether they actually keep in touch before that new hire rolls around) so that the dynamic is easily recognizable, unless you're going so far into AU territory that it doesn't matter as much, but of course how careful you are with that is really up to you.

The Goldfinch - Donna Tartt
Boris Pavlikovsky, Theo Decker

Even though Boris is such a mess I found the unusual intimacy of his and Theo's friendship to be a pleasant surprise at several points in the novel. As an actual pairing it sort of is canon and yet...isn't, and while I'm hardly demanding the shippy treatment I'd prefer something that falls in that grey area over something that just concedes to the "We just needed girlfriends" thing, if you want to write something that gets into the sexual aspect of Boris/Theo at all. They appeal pretty hard to my kink for relationships between guys that ignore the usual social restrictions of how affectionate men feel they should be with each other (in a way, the fact that they cuddled as teenagers came as a much bigger surprise to me than the fact that they were actually having some impulsive form of sex at the time), and yet when they're not having nightmares or getting too drunk to care they are very self-conscious about it...or at least Theo is. Boris seems to adopt more of a "Why should I be embarrassed for something I did in private with my best friend?" outlook and I have to wonder if he could have continued to be that cavalier about it if Theo didn't balk so much at the direct mention of the whole thing later on. I would love to read something during their adulthood where some event reignites the physical aspect of their relationship or at least brings up a lot of memories of it, but I would totally also love anything set during the Vegas years.

Also, if you wanted to do more of a gen focus on Boris from pretty much any time frame, I'm very curious about what his inner thoughts might look like. I think that even though he doesn't mature as much as he should during those several years he and Theo are apart, he does try to, and I'd like to think he makes an effort towards more self-control in how he treats women and that that sorta got half-effectively translated into his whole "Stay away from the ones you love too much" thing. I love that at his core he maintains a very youthful disposition but also has moments of being very aware of the darkness in himself. Is Theo a grounding motivation for him to be better (or somebody he likes to help because he's given up on helping himself), or does he get that from somewhere else, and to what extent is he capable of changing?

And I will quickly mention that even though I didn't request either of them, I would enjoy a bit more backstory on the Hobie/Welty relationship if anyone else is interested in that, whether you go with the ambiguous hints that it was that kind of partnership or not. I really liked Hobie and would love some speculation of what he was like at a much younger age. If he is gay or bi after all, I wonder if he would always be reluctant to be open with Theo about that, or if Theo might ever have reasons to just ask him about it.

The Stand - Stephen King
Larry Underwood, Lucy Swann

I have a whole lot of love for Larry/Lucy. Even with their relationship being sadly underdeveloped I really thought the sort of desperate yet reluctant give-and-take to it was more complicated and more true to the post-apocalyptic context than just about any other relationship in the novel, and I guess I'm saying this so that it's clear that I like that they're a bit messy and loose-ended and uncertain. Anything exploring this relationship and filling in some of the turning points/unanswered questions about it (What was their state of mind when they first hooked up? How did they emotionally negotiate moving in together when it was probably the day after they'd had a serious talk about his feelings for Nadine? When did Larry really begin to love Lucy?) would be wonderful. If you don't feel you can write this pairing, any gen focused mostly or entirely on Larry would be just fine, whether it's a serious missing scene from his last days in Boulder or, I don't know, somebody's amusing account of how much of a dick he was at his high school prom. (Something to do with Rudy, that old friend who broke up with him over borrowed money, might be an interesting place to start, since it's clear Larry bitterly regretted driving him away but still didn't change much because of it.) Let's just say I'm as much about Larry's smartass humor as I am about his insecurity and moral conflicts.


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