edenfalling: headshot of a raccoon, looking left (raccoon)
Summary: Ri-Lady Lourdés Rodelay receives bad news from home. Tom does what he can to be there for her. (525 words)

Note: I started writing this in 2011, presumably in response to a 15-minute fic prompt, but I neglected to write down the actual prompt word or which particular prompt blog it came from. Also, the ficlet obviously took me more than fifteen minutes to write. *headdesk*

It's set about a year before A Dream of Snow and A Dream of Heat, when Tom and Tab are sixteen. Lourdés is a year older than Tom.

Correspondence )

One of these days I really should sit down and actually plot out the epic saga I built this world to support, if only so I can assign suitably awesome subplots to the various friends, classmates, and family members I've created for Tab and Tom.
edenfalling: headshot of a raccoon, looking left (raccoon)
Summary: Tom Redding endures a test in the desert of Mur. (325 words)

Note: This ficlet is a direct sequel to A Dream of Snow and will make more sense if you read that one first.

A Dream of Heat )

I don't even particularly like this ficlet, but I am trying to make myself write and finish SOMETHING after a drought of over a month, so. Here is something.
edenfalling: headshot of a raccoon, looking left (raccoon)
Summary: Tabitha Redding mindwalks for the first time. Naturally she chooses her twin as her target. (300 words)

Note: This ficlet is set in an original world for which I've done a bunch of world-building but hardly any actual fiction writing. (Well, not in the past fifteen years, anyway.) The general idea is that the world of Intarre is highly permeable to other worlds, and has also been locked under two worldwide spells -- the Word and the Way -- since the aftermath of a devastating magical war. Tabitha and Thomas Redding are the grandchildren of a sorceress who fled Intarre for Earth. On their thirteenth birthday, Tabitha summons a dragon to take them back. The dragon's price is as yet unknown...

This is an incident from a few years after the twins' arrival in Intarre, when they're around seventeen.

A Dream of Snow )

Yay, original fiction! \o/
edenfalling: headshot of a raccoon, looking left (raccoon)
I took a rather lackadaisical approach to A History of Handcrafts (Because a Sweater Equals Love), otherwise known as "the unexpected remix." I had no outline and, initially, no plot or theme either -- just the knitting gimmick and some implied backstory about Amanda and Gaila from MelayneSeahawk's drabble. This resulted in several exploratory rough draft fragments that I cut and replaced for various reasons. Nonetheless, I think the unused fragments are often cute, and kind of interesting from a process-of-writing standpoint.

So here they are. (1,400 words, give or take)

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A History of Handcrafts: alternate scenes
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first attempt at scene 1 )

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alternate conclusion to scene 2 )

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first attempt at scene 3, Spock POV )

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alternate scene 3, unexpected Gaila cameo )

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alternate conclusion to scene 3 )

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In other news, I've been writing at work the past few days, but it's been kind of useless, at least from a can-I-post-this perspective.

For example, on Monday I wrote half a scene from at least two chapters ahead of myself in "Ashes" -- when Riam, Zalir, and Morgalen are at least a week into their journey, out in the tainted lands beyond Zerlon. Yesterday I wrote most a scene that is best described as fanfic for an original novel I haven't written. It's a little transitional incident that would probably not be in the actual book, if the book existed, because it's tangential to the main plot. I am writing it for my own amusement because it's a nice bit of emotional connection between two characters. I have another scene from that world (with different characters, but also a tangential transitional incident that wouldn't make it into the actual story) that I have been plotting in my head but haven't yet committed to paper.

...

I dunno, I may post them anyway when I finish. I do like my trio from "Ashes," and while I will probably never get around to writing their real story, I am also quite fond of Tom Redding, ri-Lady Lourdés Rodelay of House Ié'carranze dh Thrae, Vek abakak in'Ifut, and Signy of Vigjal, as well as the remaining cast of thousands their story contains.
edenfalling: circular blue mosaic depicting stylized waves (ocean mosaic)
I build worlds for the joy of it. I am not in the least scientific about it; I am a fantasist at heart, and people interest me much more than orbital mechanics. All my worlds are pretty much like Earth unless I am making a particular point of some sort, and even then, I tend to forget the differences. (For example, there is atmosphere, water, and life on Firsthome's moon. You can see storms move across the oceans and land masses shade from green to brown and back again over the course of a year. But Ekanu does not make a point of watching the moon, so this has never come up and is not likely to.)

What I like best is to do thought experiments on social systems. I like to create groups of people and imagine their history for several centuries or millennia. I like to play with bits of languages and old-fashioned technology.

Usually I start from a vague story idea. Usually that story never gets written, either because it has no plot or because its premise is rendered impossible by the developing rules of the world I build off its bones. I don't mind. I love stories, but there is a reason The Silmarillion and the appendices are my favorite parts of Tolkien's writing.

I mentioned in my previous entry that I had finally figured out the overarching plot gimmick for a story I've been poking at off and on (mostly off) for thirteen or fourteen years. The thing is, while I made very little story progress, I did open the files and flesh out the world and the characters a bit each year. So my files are light on plot and full of notes like this:

Inheritance rules and nomenclature of the Domains of Killian )

I have so much fun inventing stuff like that.

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And on a totally different note, it may finally have cooled off enough for me to get to sleep. Summer. Blecch.
edenfalling: golden flaming chalice in a double circle (gold chalice)
Next weekend is the annual church recycling sale. (That would be a garage sale, rummage sale, or yard sale to non-Ithacans -- Ithaca being Ithaca and UUs being UUs, we must use idiosyncratic terminology for everything *sigh* I always say 'garage sale' unless I am pointedly thinking about getting the words right, because the church I grew up in had a garage sale. Even though it was not in a garage.)

Anyway, the point is that we have been collecting donations since early July and today we finally started setting up the big items downstairs in the sanctuary and the coffee hour room, which had previously been kept clear for summer services and occasional weddings. We also hauled around lots of things that had been stored in rooms that were not their ultimate points of sale.

I volunteered for set-up this year (but not sorting, which will take place during this week) which meant I hauled around tables, card tables, clothing racks, assorted random furniture (that had to be put out of the way or it would get sold by accident -- seriously, not even taping 'not for sale' signs will stop determined customers from buying whatever they damn well want to), bags of clothes, five cartloads of shoes, hangers, signs and signposts, random housewares that had been left in the clothing room... basically, I was pegged as 'can lift heavy items' and set to playing fetch-and-carry all over the building. Which is fine; better me than a senior citizen!

But that is two hours of hard labor in a very hot and airless building, so I was sweating like a pig when I finished at 1:30pm. I wore a skirt rather than pants (on the theory that skirts provide slightly more ventilation), but that's like the difference between 95 degrees and 93 degrees -- technically there, but practically meaningless. So I went straight to work and spent the two hours until I was on-shift sitting in the blessedly air-conditioned back room, drinking a cold Coke and reading a book about raising twins. (That is, incidentally, research for my planned Femgenficathon story about Jadis and her sister, but it doubles as research for a very old original novel idea that was stalled for lack of an overarching plot to pull the various incidents together and provide momentum toward an ending... and I finally figured the plot gimmick out tonight while cleaning coffee pots, so yay! It took me forever -- what, thirteen years? fourteen? maybe only nine since I decided Tab owes the dragon an open-ended favor -- but I got there!)

Other stuff I did today: counted some of next week's inventory list and wrote up orders to phone in tomorrow (I like to get a jump on that on Sunday nights, since weekdays are often crazier than expected); bought a small two-piece endtable, the smaller section of which fits perfectly into the narrow gap between my bed and dresser, thus allowing me to put a tissue box within easy reach for the next time I have a cold (hey, it will happen; I might as well be prepared!); and paid my credit card bills, getting back on top of my receipts for the first time since my move (yay!).
edenfalling: headshot of a raccoon, looking left (raccoon)
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Master List of Elizabeth Culmer's Fiction: Original Stories
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Organization: This list is organized primarily by... *ponders terminology* by universe, shall we say. Within each universe, I organized stories by timelines, by associated story cycles, or by degree of relation to the main story; the summaries should hopefully make the patterns clear. When the 'universe' is a category rather than a fully realized secondary world, the stories are arranged chronologically by writing date. Word counts and writing dates are approximations. (Especially the writing dates. *headdesk*)

Content/Warning Policy: 1) I am not consistent about warnings! I use them when I remember, for a few relatively broad categories of potentially problematic content, but if something is off-page, non-explicit, or generally backgrounded, I probably won't think to note it in the metadata. 2) The things I try to warn for are explicit sex, rape, murder, torture, cannibalism, incest, depression/suicide, familial dysfunction, and occasionally also societal dysfunction (aka dystopia). Sometimes I just slap a general content warning on all my fic for a given fandom and don't label each individual fic. I also don't generally warn for violence, unless the violence in a fic is dramatically out-of-step with the violence in its source canon. 3) I don't use any content rating system unless I'm posting to a site or community that requires or encourages ratings, because I find movie-style ratings counter-intuitive when applied to written fiction, and not particularly useful for anything other than denoting the presence of explicit sex, which I already note in the metadata.

Quality Rating System: I've marked my favorite stories with asterisks, on a scale of 1 to 4. The more asterisks, the more I like the story. This doesn't necessarily mean that stories without asterisks are bad, just that I don't like them as much. Also, I am not claiming to be an arbiter of taste; you may love stories I dislike, and vice versa. I am just providing a heads-up about the ones that I think are best written and/or most interesting.

Notes: I am shamefully slow about my original writing, and I almost never seem to finish anything. Nonetheless, a fair amount of the following stories are complete, if only because I try to avoid posting those likely to be permanently unfinished. *sigh*

Also, a general advisory: you may or may not have noticed while reading my fanfic -- my quirks are somewhat disguised and/or mitigated by working in other people's universes -- but I am fascinated by ethics, religion, families and other social networks, sociology, history, culture clashes, world-building, and the nature and structure of truth and stories. I also have a strong tendency to focus on female characters. A lot of my original fiction is slower and more 'thinky' than a lot of my fanfic, and my issues show through more clearly.

None of these are necessarily bad things, but I figure it's only fair to tell you what to expect from my work. :)

Contents: Firsthome, The Sum of Things, The Summoner's Tale, Ironheart's War, Winter's Daughter, The Witch of Immish, fables and fairy-tales, Camia ('Finding Marea'), modern America, autobiographical (kinda-sorta), Ithaca Paranormal, Elsewhere, Ashes, Sunbright and Shadowfall, Utilitarian Virtue, Intarre, random stuff

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Firsthome )

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The Sum of Things )

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The Summoner's Tale )

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Ironheart's War )

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Winter's Daughter )

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The Witch of Immish )

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Other fables and fairy tales )

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Camia ('Finding Marea') )

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Modern America (occasionally, I write stuff that isn't fantasy or sf) )

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Autobiographical (kinda-sorta) )

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Ithaca Paranormal )

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Elsewhere )

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Ashes )

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Sunbright and Shadowfall )

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Utilitarian Virtue )

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Intarre )

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Random stuff )

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edenfalling: stylized black-and-white line art of a sunset over water (Default)
Elizabeth Culmer

August 2017

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