sophinisba: Lancelot with text: Chicks dig scars (lancelot scars by miakun)
Sophinisba Solis ([personal profile] sophinisba) wrote2011-08-14 07:15 pm

summerpornathon review!

Yay, that was a great fest! I had fun, read a lot of fic by lots of different people, and did very well with my main goal: writing porn quickly!

1. Hush (Gwen/Lancelot)
2. Dusk in the Market Square (Aredian/Merlin)
3. If Lost (Freya/Morgana)
4. Believe This Is Real (Freya/Merlin)
5. Deep Breathless Black (Merlin/Morgana/octopus)
6. Jump In, Jump In (Gwen/Merlin)
7. Aglain's School for Gifted Youngsters (Aglain/Morgana)

So that is seven different ships, many of them new to me, and a lot more het than I expected to write! (I never think of myself as a het writer and then I often, you know, write het.) I'm surprised that there's no Gwen/Morgana, although I did write two other Gwen/Morgana fics last month, and I'm sad that there's no Arthur/Merlin - I had intended to write one or two of those, both to show myself that I could and as, idk, some kind of gesture to the OTP fans to say thanks for opening up their challenge and letting all of us play. I just didn't get any A/M ideas though, so it didn't work out, and that's probably okay. I did push myself in other ways and wrote some new kinks (crossed off some kink-bingo squares!), as well as my first fic featuring a transgender character and my first sexy fic featuring a black male character. Whoo!

The two themes I noticed myself repeating are Nice Girls Enjoying Kinky Sex (1, 3, 4, and 6) and Merlin Being Victimized (2 and 5). I am amused and not really surprised that 2 and 5 are the two that got the fewest comments at the 'thon but have the highest hit counts at the AO3. I really do love having the AO3 to reassure me that people are reading, even when they can't figure out what to say or, I guess, can't bring themselves to click on the kudos button.

So that was a pretty good summer of writing. No epics, no exchanges, nothing to transform the fandom forever, but it feels good to know that I can still write porn, and sometimes quickly, and most of the time what I do works for at least a few other people.

I also feel generally good about how much I participated in the fest, though I can see from the coupons spreadsheet that most people did better at that than I did. Anyway, I completed all the main challenges and some of the bonus challenges, and I voted in at least one group for all seven challenges. I read a whole lot of fic that I wouldn't normally read, and though I did get pretty sick of Arthur/Merlin drunksex in bars, I mostly enjoyed it. I gained new appreciation for Gwaine as a character and Gwaine/Merlin as a ship, kept being surprised by how a good Arthur/Merlin ficlet can charm me or touch me or get me hot and bothered after all this time, was delighted to see so much of Elena and Vivian, and mostly didn't get worked up about seeing so little of Gwen. Eh, tastes!

I had really hesitated to sign up because I thought the competition aspect of it would stress me out, and that just did not end up being a concern! I had fun with the voting and commenting and calling out, the author mystery and then usually the reveal, though in some cases I did miss out on finding out who wrote some of my favorites.

I didn't do as well with my secondary goal of making friends in Merlin fandom as with the writing stuff. I didn't really bond with the people on my team (other than [personal profile] fitz_y, who was already a friend). Well, being social can be hard. I missed the friending meme at my team comm the first week and the one at the general comm last week, but I did add a few new people and enjoyed lots of fic by authors I hadn't read before. Maybe we'll get to know each other better with time.

I didn't do well at all with the bonus challenges. I know a lot of people were doing creative and fun stuff with them, but they mostly felt silly to me, and I didn't have the patience to look at what everybody was doing. I had trouble getting the pages to load because of all the images in comments, and I don't feel good about any of the things I made except for the podfic I made of [personal profile] themadlurker's fic, which I don't think anyone at the pornathon listened to.

Which, you know, totally makes sense, because not a lot of people listen to podfic, and fewer people comment on it in part because it's hard to remember where you saw it, so multiply that times ten if the place you saw it was in a comment at a party post where it's hard to get the pages to load. It's just, I did get kind of disappointed because I'd had this idea a couple weeks in that that would be my big way of bonding with the folks at the pornathon!! I would record like twenty podficlets based on pornathon entries by different people, and probably a few other people would record a few other pornathon ficlets each, and then at the end of the summer I'd make an announcement to get in touch with those other podficcers, and I'd put all the podficlets together in a podbook and we would have this nice substantial podfic commemoration of the challenge!

So I asked for permission to record a lot of the fics, but some of the authors never de-anoned, some did but didn't answer my requests, some said sure but wanted me to wait for them to repost and they haven't reposted, or they reposted but didn't contact me and I've lost track of the conversations in comments, and so on. And that's fine, I mean, I don't mean to sound like an entitled podficcer who thinks every author should post to suit my needs. Some people are not going to want to repost or they just don't have time right now, or maybe they just do not want to be podficced and thought that not answering would be kinder than telling me so. (Also I have failed to respond to some comments. I understand that these things happen.) I'm just saying, it was something I thought I'd be able to do fairly easily and that hasn't worked out, so that makes me a little sad. Maybe a bunch of people will repost all of theirs this week though. I see that some of the mods are offering to do podfics as prizes for participation and that is neat.

In general I am SO VERY IMPRESSED by what a great job the mods have done, keeping this going all summer and accommodating so VERY MANY participants who all want different things out of the challenge. The atmosphere at the comm has been so friendly and encouraging through the whole thing, and I'm really happy that I got to participate. I hope it'll run again next year and that I'll get a chance to play again!