zodiacal_light: AU: Because everything's better with zombies. (AU)
A lot changes if you eliminate the Immortals, and not always the obvious stuff. It means a lot of little changes too, like Kel not having her griffin-feather band, that I entirely forgot about.

...This is fun and exciting and I wish I didn't have to sleep now and do classwork tomorrow (er, later today) because I have SO MANY IDEAS and two stories fully laid out in my head and the end is omg in sight and I want to write them all NOW.

Oh, well.

Also, is it just me, or does not a lot actually happen in the Immortals Quartet? I've blown through the books again for the fics, and I was trying to keep track of the major events - there aren't really that many, and certainly not after you cut out all the stuff with Immortals. There are pretty big time jumps between the books, but the books themselves cover very little. Which in a way is wonderful, because it means I can skip a lot and not end up with a massive fic o'doom again.

But. It feels weird cutting out a lot of the stuff, because they may be tiny and not really advancing the action, but they're emotional steps for Daine. In WM, anyway, which is where I always get tangled up ('s where I'm stuck at in the Flickerverse, sigh). WS I can write off pretty well - it's so boooooooring and frankly is largely disconnected from the rest of the quartet, so. RotG, same thing, esp. if you ditch the goddamn romantic plotline.

EM has more stuff, but EM, to me, is the most action-y of the series, and the more I reread, the more it fascinates me, because that's the book where we get neat international-politics stuff and neat glimpses of another non-Tortallan culture ... until we do a hard right into zombie-dino horror via chick flick that I'm supposed to somehow be emotionally invested in. (I'm not.) I tend to focus on particular books when writing fanfic: for SotL, it's AtFA and LR; for Immortals, it's WM and EM. With SotL, the dissonance between AtFA/ItHotG (which I frankly tend to reread together as one story; in my head I have a hell of a time separating the two) and LR drives most of my fics.

With IQ, the dissonance between WM and EM causes me insane amounts of trouble, and not in a fun-happy-fic way. I've said before that it seems like we get a different Daine every book - at least for fic purposes, I can largely discard two. But I like EM as a ficcer - that's the book I want to play with.

Except that I hate EM!Daine with the fire of a thousand suns. To use an apt cliche.

She is, frankly, either a complete entitled jackass or OOC in that book. The first means I don't like her and don't want to write her; the second is hard to explain away. Pierce has a consistency problem when it comes to her characters, but sometimes as a ficcer that's fun - look at all the Thom stories I've written, almost all centered on explaining away his OOCness in LR.

The only explanation I can work out for Daine (unless I want to write Numair as Roger 2.0) is that she's grown up to be an incredibly bitchy teenager. I don't like teenagers who act like Daine, even when I was one - and I don't like how her nasty attitude gets portrayed more and more as laudable ... or funny.

It's not.

I think, having written all this, that that's why I get tangled up in all those scenes in WM that don't progress the plot, because they do progress Daine's character. I think I get tangled up because I try to build up some sense of character - make a case for my view of what she's supposed to be, but built up in a way that allows for the plots of the later books to happen.

The funny thing about this is, I write AUs almost exclusively. Some, like the one I'm currently working on, are pretty damn drastic. You'd think that'd make all this easier, but it doesn't, somehow. The only 'verses I've ever not had problems writing Daine in are the Flickerverse and the 'verse spawned by Difference. (Which I need to get back to, but I digress.) And in Flicker, I was very consciously writing only WM!Daine. (And yet, I'm still stuck on the AU-Immortals longfic for that 'verse. Go figure.)

I wish, with Unhidden, that I could just skip to EM. But that's part of the problem with starting the divergence in SotL - I have to establish to my satisfaction how the changes propagate through Daine's entrance into canon before writing fun geopolitical stuff. (Zombie dinosaurs optional.) And while I have all these ~ideas~ for plot changes - to the point that this is, so far, the only 'verse where I actually know the plot before I write it - and I've hammered out the other characters, I keep getting tangled in Daine. She seems to demand a long, slow introduction, whatever the fic.

...Ultimately, it comes down to a flow issue, of sorts. I'm not terribly great at picking up on things like flow and tone in what I read, but I do feel them when I write. And that tells me there's a sharp difference in tone/flow between SotL and IQ that I am having a very hard time bridging - SotL, you can timeskip and have brief talky/telling scenes establishing major plot points (or offing major characters) and then move on. IQ, everything lingers. Comparatively little happens. Writing it in SotL-ish style gets a choppy story.

...GAH.



All that said, I am so ready to churn out this fic. Pacing/flow problems or no.

Largely because it's turning into a sort of character exploration of Numair, with the requisite crackishness this 'verse demands. XD

ETA: There is only one single plot thing I can't decide on, for Unhidden #3, though I'm still ironing out some details. So I ask the internets - Daine/Numair, or no Daine/Numair? I hate the 'ship, but. I am wondering if that'd come across forced, since I usually do break them up/make them never happen.

On the one hand, canon. Also, I can almost make the case for it in this 'verse, esp. if I do what I'm considering and limit Numair's role as Daine's teacher/mentor. On the other, well. I don't see them a) lasting, whatever Pierce insists, or b) happening outside a very specific set of circumstances*, largely but not entirely known as RotG, which basically doesn't happen in this 'verse. So.

Maybe I should just write them as a fling. Or marry Numair off again.

---
*Funny how very many times I've said that about stuff in Pierce's books, really. Not that that's a bad thing, necessarily - for example, Joren's bullying occurs under very particular circumstances, and he'd be much less of a threat in a different context.

But it's interesting how often that's true of her romances. Daine/Numair and Aly/Nawat are the ones that come to mind - and in Tortall, there are only three lasting romances out of four leading ladies. So. Alanna/George I can see happening under multiple scenarios - not either of the other two.

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zodiacal_light: Humour: Because angst is not jolly. (Default)
Alix

October 2013

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