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When I finished posting "If You've Got a Lantern Hold It High" (the small coda/companion story to my big "Be the Light in My Lantern" series), I looked at the series as a whole on AO3 and remembered – oh, right: now I mark it complete. This series I started writing in 2010 is now complete.

It actually feels kind of bittersweet (end of an era?), especially because the people I knew back then when I was writing the early parts of that story and when I first started engaging with fandom on LJ, the Remus/Tonks folks, are no longer active here (not to mention that even LJ itself has imploded in the meanwhile.)

Aah! Don't dwell on sad things!

Here's an awesome one:

Now that I've posted this latest fic to AO3... I've passed the 500,000 word mark on AO3! (Technically, 510,788. Plus there are another 42,000 here on my desktop that haven't been posted yet. And so on.)

But also? Of those half a million (!) words on AO3, a really significant portion of them, nearly half, are the "Be the Light in My Lantern" series. That one massive story, which I started because I was so new to fic that I didn't know better than to take on a massive multi-book-length project as my first thing out of the gate, really has kind of defined a whole arc of my life in the years since I rediscovered writing: who I met, what I learned (so much!), what characters I explored, what I'm ready to do next because I had that foundation first.

Wouldn't trade it for anything. <3 <3 <3

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

On a less intensely emotional note (though...maybe not really?)  .....happy Deathly Hallows anniversary everyone! It was ten years ago today that Deathly Hallows was published and the Harry Potter series was complete. (I mean, yes, there are expanded-universe things like Pottermore and Cursed Child and now the Fantastic Beasts movies, but surely nothing quite has that same feeling as the book series itself being complete?)

Does it make you feel old? Or just a bit strange? For me, Deathly Hallows came out before I even moved to Berlin (though I already lived in Germany), and now I no longer live in Germany at all – even though I spent the bulk of my adult life so far there. How can all that have happened in the time since the last Harry Potter book came out?
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Every now and then, I eye my total word count on AO3 (AO3 is so excellent and user-friendly in the way it shows stats!) and think about what a satisfying milestone it's going to be when I hit 500,000 words. 500,000 words – that's like 10 novels, if you count in NaNoWriMo terms! (Yes, NaNo sets their word target at the low end of what can be considered a novel...but still.) Right now my fics on AO3 add up to about 489,000 words, so it's very much within striking distance.

Then I realized: I already have way, way more than those remaining 11,000 words sitting right here on my desktop. Between three different complete-but-not-yet-posted fics (one that's finished and I just sent off to Holmestice, one I just got back from its beta and will be doing final revisions on before posting, and one that I want to do another read-through of before it too needs to find a beta but it's definitely a complete story) I have about another 55,000 words sitting right here, nearly ready for the world. (Eep...another novel's worth??)

I'm way over 500,000 and I didn't even realize. (But it's still going to be awesome when that number is there in black and white on AO3.)  :-)

COMPLETE

Jun. 14th, 2016 12:00 am
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Remember that enormous, epic Remus/Tonks story I started writing, oh, nearly six years ago now?

I just posted the final chapter.

Of course, somehow, inevitably, the way the timing of it worked out left me scrambling to revise and post the final chapter of the story while also preparing to leave for an entire summer of travel in less than three days from now.

I got the story done; presumably I will also manage to get myself onto the plane and to Europe. Very soon, I'm sure I'm going to feel very, very accomplished.

Right now, though, I mostly just feel utterly zonked, and I want to go to bed. So I'm going to do that.

More thoughts soon!

Progress!

Oct. 1st, 2015 11:32 pm
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HALFWAY THROUGH THE FINAL EDIT OF "RAISE YOUR LANTERN HIGH."

That's halfway in terms of total pages, and in terms of chapters (11 out of 22 done) and even in terms of timeline for that year of canon (Remus is right now, between the just-finished chapter and the next one, heading to the Burrow for Christmas).

Given that I've apparently been writing this story for 2.5 years (I checked the datestamps!) and the two-part series as a whole for 5 years, the fact that I've raced through fully half of this newest draft in a month feels like nothing short of a miracle.

Also, the Remus/Sirius Games opened today! And I'm pleased with my fic for that, too. And there's an unrelated, co-written Remus/Sirius story coming soon(ish) too. So my main Remus pairings are well represented these days. :-)
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The part that hasn't been visible, as I've been posting all these shorter fics in the half year since I finished up posting Part 1 ("Be the Light in My Lantern") of my massive Remus/Tonks fic, is that I've also been working and working, all this time, at Part 2.

Finished the rough draft of Part 2 in September, and ever since have been slowly but determinedly working my way (with HUGE help from beta reader extraordinaire [livejournal.com profile] stereolightning!) through a massive list of things that needed to be added, changed or fixed in the second draft. Seriously, my list had 64 items on it, ranging from quick fixes to entire new scenes to thorny overarching logistical problems still to be worked out.

Just reached "The End" on the second draft tonight.

There's still a third draft to come; the whole thing needs a re-read and overall revision, since so far I've been focused on fixing specific trouble spots and ignoring the rest of it. And I probably need to take a break for a while before doing that, so I can come at it with fresh(er) eyes. But for the first time, it actually feels like completion of this project is in sight, rather than being some phantasm of my unrealistic imagination.

Part 2 is now a separate story from "Be the Light in My Lantern" (they'll form a two-part series). Part 2 is tentatively titled "Raise Your Lantern High" and covers the HBP year, and currently clocks in at 240 pages in Word (about 112,000 words). Between Part 1 and Part 2, this is a project I've been working on for nearly five years.

!

And now I'm going to sleep. (But there's also a fun co-written project coming soon...cf. post by stereolightning!)

Milestones

Nov. 23rd, 2014 08:23 pm
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A story of mine just reached 1,000 hits on AO3 for the first time! It's On a Windswept Cliff, the Remus/Sirius gothic romance AU.

For someone who until about a year ago was, yes, writing fic, but otherwise still mostly sort of hiding and too shy to interact with anyone else in fandom or to do anything more with the fics than just quietly park them there and hope for the best, this feels like a big deal!

And what a year it's been, indeed. Looking back, I see that by this time last year, I'd posted 15 stories (written over the course of about two and a half years), and had only just started to meet other people in fandom. By this time this year, I've now got a total of 47 stories (does that mean 30+ fics written in one year??) and a bunch of lovely fandom friends and acquaintances, I've participated in Remus/Tonks fests and the Remus/Sirius Games and a Sirius event, been nominated for an award, had a fic translated into Chinese(!) and fanart made of my fics(!), dared to branch out a little by posting my stories to communities and events, and really expanded what I've tried in terms of style and content: writing M/M relationships for the first time, writing sex(ier) scenes for the first time, writing AUs in addition to canon-compliant stories, writing about characters I never expected to explore (like Snape or Regulus or Remus' mum), trying out different styles and tones and forms. Oh, and I finally returned to original fiction, too, and wrote the first section of a novel!

Hm, okay. If I ever find myself thinking I haven't accomplished much this year, I'm going to look back at this post.

Anyway, mostly I just wanted to say, WOW, I'm so pleased to have ended up far more involved in fandom than I ever expected to be!
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Four years ago (four years ago almost to the day – I went back just now and checked!) I started writing a story.

It was to be a story of Remus and Tonks and how their relationship came to be, as well as a story about what the adult characters of the Harry Potter world were up to all that time, while the narrative of the books was with Harry. This was always going to be a long story – though if I'd known then how long, I might never have dared to start! (So in retrospect, I'm glad I didn't know.)

Whether intended that way or not, this story became my magnum opus, the massive behemoth of a thing I was chugging away at all the time in the background, even while writing and posting many smaller fics. I can clearly remember brainstorming ideas for scenes for this story while on long hikes through the wilds of Iceland three years ago; I found myself doing the same when I returned to Iceland this year.

This Remus/Tonks story, despite the intervening four years and 40-some fics, was actually only the second fanfic I started to write, ever. And in terms of posting order, I think it became the forty-second fic, once it was finally ready to start posting?

Part 1 (the Order of the Phoenix year), as you've probably seen, is complete – not just completely written, but beta'ed and revised and done, done, done, and I'm posting it now. All the while, though, I've still been working away at Part 2 (the Half-Blood Prince year), truly wondering if I would ever reach the end. I think you can guess where I'm going with this...

Today, I wrote "The End" on the story.

Oh, there's still work to be done. Probably months' worth of revising, beta-ing, revising more. But a complete draft now exists – over 180,000 words of it, counting both parts together! Four years in the making, from setting down the first words of the first chapter to writing the last words of the last chapter.

Tonight, I'm raising a glass to a feeling of accomplishment!

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