Winter Sunlight

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Sketch Fest happening now!

For some reason, LJ has set my friends page back to the "old" version. I don't really mind, and I'm not even sure if I'm going to change it back; it's just kind of weird to have it happen with total spontaneity like that. LJ: you never know what'll happen next.

I finished a big project yesterday, so today I'm mostly goofing off and doing all the little things that didn't get done the past week while I was working on it. Such as light yardwork since it's not actually raining right now. We've been having some really amazing flooding in the creek, and it washed away our footbridge, which is normally a couple feet above the water level (it's a very small creek). Once the water is back to normal, I'm looking forward to walking along it and seeing what's changed.

My current pet peeve in Winter Soldier fanfic: I'm happy there is starting to be more Sam/Bucky, because I think that pairing is adorable, but what I would like to know is why so much of it has to build up the pairing by putting down Steve's relationship with Bucky (the usual thing seems to be Steve pressures him/doesn't understand him, so he goes to Sam instead). I hate that; I just want relationship fluff in which everyone gets along and loves each other. Is that really so hard?

(Also, though this is much more of a totally idiosyncratic, I-know-this-is-just-me kind of thing, the background Steve pairing of choice in Sam/Bucky fic seems to be Steve/Tony, which is my absolute anti-OTP for those characters.)

(Also there's still not enough gen.)

(FANDOM IS NOT CATERING TO MY EVERY WHIM. TRAAAAAGEDY.)

.... but really, I know I'm being terribly ungrateful to complain since there is just so much fic in this fandom that hits my narrative kinks. SO MUCH. And, after being in a small fandom for so long, it's still weird being in a fandom where there is so much more fic posted than I can actually read.

Oh, and season six of White Collar is filming now! LAST SEASON, WOE.

Things I keep meaning to make posts about:
- Comics. I am reading a lot of them. My general strategy still seems to be "read every comic published between 2005 and now that has Bucky in it" (this is proceeding nicely and is still a tolerably manageable habit; gawd I'm glad my dive back into Marvel comics didn't involve falling for, say, Wolverine). But I'm reading other stuff as well - among other things, I've tried Young Avengers, the Matt Fraction Hawkeye, and Ms Marvel, and really liked all of them. Need to pick up more Young Avengers for sure!
- I need to make another post or two of Captain America fan stuff recs. I probably have enough tumblr ficlets to make another post of those. I really meant to make a proper fic rec post, but I've basically just been bookmarking everything I liked on AO3 without really categorizing things, and now I'm not entirely sure where to begin.
- I also have a ton of comments to answer ...

ETA: Interesting post discovered via network (or something) on strategies to get more attention for your fanwork - some of which are rather mercenary/PR-ish, and most of this is probably too fanwork-specific to translate easily to original fiction (which of course is where my mind goes IMMEDIATELY), but it's an interesting read, regardless!

This entry is also posted at http://sholio.dreamwidth.org/957987.html with comment count unavailable comments.
I have t admit pretty much the only winter soldier fic I am reading is either gen or steve/bucky. I really wish there was a lot more sam&bucky bro!fic out there. That's what I really want.

As for reading all the Bucky comics after 2005? If I could find some kind of comprehensive list it would be a lot easier to accomplish, lol

I am so far behind on White collar I am never going to catch up! Oh well, i guess i'll have to keep trying, lol
Awww man, I wish there was more fic about Sam and Bucky being buddies too! I'm writing a long(ish) action fic about the two of them stranded in the wilderness together (if it doesn't exist .... write it, I guess) -- I should really get back to that.

I'm kind of just haphazardly going around collecting comics as I stumble across them. Part of the problem is that Bucky was in A TON OF STUFF during his Cap/Avengers/dating-Black-Widow days, so I keep running into new ones that I didn't know about. (I just got "Avengers/Invaders" yesterday, which is a GN from about 2008 that is an absolute MESS of a story, but has a lot of great Bucky character stuff ...) It's making me sad all over again about the direction he's taken over the last couple of years in the Marvel universe, because there's such a sense of hope and optimism to the earlier Bucky stuff that just gets lost later on. They've kind of embraced the lone-hero/Rambo persona for him, and he just turns up as backup-with-guns in other people's stories; they don't really write the neat, introspective character-focused storylines that he used to get. I hope that with the character becoming popular due to the movies, they'll fold him back into the Avengers side of the universe again.
My current pet peeve in Winter Soldier fanfic: I'm happy there is starting to be more Sam/Bucky, because I think that pairing is adorable, but what I would like to know is why so much of it has to build up the pairing by putting down Steve's relationship with Bucky

Ugh, that's always so annoying! I hate it when the method of building up one pairing involves putting down another one. Really glad I don't read that pairing now. (Steve/Bucky, Bucky/Natasha, the odd Steve/Bucky/Natasha, and some stuff involving Peggy, that's as far as I can goi with these characters.)

(FANDOM IS NOT CATERING TO MY EVERY WHIM. TRAAAAAGEDY.)

That's what I say every day! *g*

(You absolutely should post more about comics. And so should I, actually, now that I've started catching up again.)
Steve/Bucky is still my main pairing for them (although I also really wish there was more gen post-WS trauma recovery fic). But even with that one, nothing turns me off a fic faster than putting down Peggy or otherwise building up the pairing by tearing down their other relationships. Grrr, fandom. :P

You should definitely post more about comics! And so should I! :D It's so much fun having fallen back into what was, for me, a really big part of my life for decades. I only fell out of comics the last decade or so, and it's been immense fun catching up and seeing what I missed.
I've never been able to get into the Steve/Tony pairing. It's never clicked for me at all. Totally adore Steve/Bucky from the word go.

The only pairing for Sam that's really worked for me is Hawkeye and that's because I see Sam, then I see Clint...my brain screams Hurt Locker. I love that movie and my brain kept asking...'why aren't they fucking?' I need more of that fic.

I'm not into comics. I'm mostly animation and movies.
Yeah, ditto on Steve/Tony and Steve/Bucky. I'm not entirely sure why some pairings click for me and others don't, but Steve/Bucky was insta-love and yet, I can't seem to get into Steve/Sam at all (but I love Sam/Bucky). Go fig.

Are they both in Hurt Locker? I had no idea! I really should watch that someday. I keep being startled at the various things Chris Evans has been in that I've seen. Apparently he's one of those people who disappears into his roles to the point where I just don't recognize him at all.
Yay, you're reading Young Avengers!!! :D How far are you? What do you think?? (And can you tell I'm way over-invested in the series? ;D)

...I am so glad I haven't yet run into any of the anti-Steve Sam/Bucky you're talking about. That would just... I... no. :|

(Agreed on Steve/Tony as well. I'm not sure what rubs me so the wrong way about it-- something about how Steve gets characterized, I think?)
I picked up the first volume of the most recent renumbering (marvel why are you so stupid about these things) because it seemed like a good jumping-on place, and so far that's all I've read! I absolutely love it, though. It's fantastically well written, I adore America Chavez and like the others a lot, and basically I'm just finding it a ton of fun. :) I'm definitely picking up some more of it next time I go back to the comic shop! Once I'm done with the newest ones, do you have any suggestions for where I should start getting caught up on the rest of it?

Steve/Tony ... yeah, there's something about the character dynamic that just doesn't work for me. It might be different after Age of Ultron, as they'll presumably get more (friendly) interaction in that, but there's also the problem that I'mterribly OTP-ish about Tony/Pepper -- I think it's one of the very few pairings that I'm so OTP-ish about that I can't handle them breaking up (adding other people to the mix, that's okay; breaking them up, NOPE).
but what I would like to know is why so much of it has to build up the pairing by putting down Steve's relationship with Bucky (the usual thing seems to be Steve pressures him/doesn't understand him, so he goes to Sam instead).

Kind of like redemption fic. In order to redeem the villain the hero must be portrayed as a selfish, uncaring douche! Ugh.

I really wish there as a strategy to get attention for original works, because that would be incredibly helpful right now. Plus, the thing about fanfic is that it seems to do pretty well on its own in terms of garnering attention. I mean, fanfic is pretty addicting stuff, and everyone eventually reaches a point where they'll click on a story they may have previously ignored. Personally - although I totally agree about summaries and tagging and being careful how you tag and label - I think all a story needs to get some attention is to be written as well as one can write it and cleaned up. Because most stories that don't get a lot of kudos and reviews are usually the ones that are so poorly written very few people are willing to put up with them.

But, then again, by the time I've gotten into a new fandom the show is already about a season or two in, so I'm used to just sticking a story up and letting the audience do the rest. I've yet to experience a fandom when it's brand spanking new.
Kind of like redemption fic. In order to redeem the villain the hero must be portrayed as a selfish, uncaring douche! Ugh.

Right, yeah, exactly. NUANCE, WHAT IS THAT.

Original fic ... man, let me know if you hit on anything that works, 'cause I am CLUELESS. I just read your post on art vs fic and ... yeah. Not that artists have it that great, but promoting original fiction online is REALLY DIFFICULT, especially for someone who doesn't have much of a presence yet.

The current thing that I am thinking about trying for original fic promotion is consistency, because long-form webcomics (graphic-novel style, as opposed to the joke-a-day kind) have some of the same hurdles to overcome as original fic (they're an investment of time, they don't really lend themselves well to pulling out a single page and passing it around on social media), and the way they build up an audience is through consistently posting pages every week. I've seen people occasionally do that with fiction -- serializing it, having a new story every Friday, doing promptfic once a month, etc -- and some people can make that work pretty well for them. (Others can't. It's really a hit-or-miss thing.) So yeah, I think what I'm going to try, as well as restarting my webcomic, is some sort of serialized fiction -- I'm thinking about either writing something new, or dusting off one of my older projects and serializing it. Just to build up an audience a little bit. I don't know if it'll work, but it can't hurt to try, right?

.... which reminds me that I completely forgot until RIGHT NOW about the story that I said I'd illustrate for you. I haven't read it yet! (Actually, I have your other recently posted story open in a tab to be read too ...) I feel terrible about forgetting; I'm so very sorry. Now that I'm out from under my big project, for now, I will try to read it in the next couple of days and start poking at art ideas!
I'm happy there is starting to be more Sam/Bucky, because I think that pairing is adorable, but what I would like to know is why so much of it has to build up the pairing by putting down Steve's relationship with Bucky (the usual thing seems to be Steve pressures him/doesn't understand him, so he goes to Sam instead).
Ah. I've seen a couple of those and just been baffled. I didn't even get the logic that it was supposed to make Sam/Bucky better or more desirable!

I mostly want gen, but there's never as much as I want.

Also, I am finding that where I felt like people in Stargate and BBC Sherlock fandom were generally fairly consistent in ratings, there's either less consistency in MCU, or I'm just not picky enough. I'm getting things marked "general audiences" and teen that I thought should have been "mature." I'll read some fic rated M, but I like to know when I'm getting into it, because a) there are some things I won't read if they have an M rating that I would read at G or T, and b) there are things I don't want up on my screen when Daughter wanders into the room!

I think I am catching up. At one point, I was back like 30 pages in the AO3 fics tagged for Bucky, and now I'm only eight or nine pages back. Well, that will give me more time to look for Natasha fics that don't have Bucky, and Sam fics, and. . . . I should probably actually see the Hulk movie before I read much more Bruce fic. It's on the Netflix list!

Need more gen!
Oh man, the ratings AND the pairing tagging is just completely bizarre in this fandom. It's like people have no clue what they're doing. I've run across fic with mature ratings for no reason whatsoever, sudden surprise noncon in teen-rated fic, fic tagged gen that is REALLY OBVIOUSLY pairing-focused, fic tagged M/M that has no evident pairings whatsoever ...

Ah. I've seen a couple of those and just been baffled. I didn't even get the logic that it was supposed to make Sam/Bucky better or more desirable!

I know! It's so weird! It doesn't even do the main pairing any favors, because it kind of makes Sam look like the backup choice when Steve didn't work out. And that's totally unfair to Sam! I don't know if it's because the Steve/Bucky pairing is so dominant in the fandom that people feel like they have to explain why Bucky's not with him (but you don't need a reason! sometimes you just don't feel that way about somebody but care about them anyway! THIS IS A THING THAT HAPPENS!).

/facepalm

And yeah, there always needs to be more gen. White Collar at least tended to be pretty gen-focused. This fandom ... isn't. There is a fair bit of gen just because the fandom is so huge that you tend to end up with SOME gen by default, but it could definitely use more! (avengersgen does help with that; the community is pretty active since the new movie came out.)
that is interesting. Frankly talking to people and answering reviews are very good ideas in fandom (probably a little less so in original fic). I knew A LOT who were 'just too busy' to acknowledge people then bemoaned a fall off of reviews.

However getting out there and interacting a bit on FB/Twitter is a good idea.

Shills....well I guess reviewing a friend's work on Goodreads/Amazon would work. That does seem to help some.

Working on blurbs could subsitute for the summary advice.

And just getting out there is one of the reasons I did the Love'sLandscape challenge. It could backfire if they hate it but there could be a lot of people looking at my stuff who normally wouldn't have.

I do think her 'put the main character's name in the title' is really silly. That would be more of a turn off to me than a lure.
I do think her 'put the main character's name in the title' is really silly. That would be more of a turn off to me than a lure.

Me too. I often find those titles sound silly or awkward to me, and if I don't like the title, I'm less likely to read the fic. A lot of those tips may mean that more people see your fic, but it doesn't mean that people will read it, and it doesn't mean people will comment. (Especially, if you've tagged for characters or pairings who barely show up, and someone who wanted that pairing didn't even get what they came for.) I mean, yes, it increases your chances of comments, but at that point it feels more like I'm selling myself than participating in a fandom community. (Or, you know, posting a fic because I'm proud it.) If I'm going to sell myself that aggressively, I really should be making actual money at it.

Or, uh, that's what I think.
I just read a great White Collar story that resolves last season's cliffhanger (better than the show will, I suspect, but don't quote me on that). I've put it in my bookmarks, but I know you're steering away from most WC fandom, so I thought I'd put a note here (since you briefly mentioned WC): "Turn Toward the Light," by Sahiya.