Tell us something about yourself: Where are you from? Age/Gender? Hobbies? Anything you'd like to share:
About Two Ladies of Quality
I'm a 43 year old woman originally from Pennsylvania but currently in Utah. Husband, two cats, no kids. I do some needlework, but my primary hobby these days is fic writing. How did you begin writing in general?
When I was in grade school, we'd be assigned stories, and my stories were always longer and more convoluted than everyone else's. My preferred mode of expression was always words on paper.
What inspired you to begin writing fanfic?
Star Wars, the first run, in theatres and everything. A great, soundless explosion went off in my head, and suddenly I wanted to see stories in that universe that weren't being shown on screen. What did the characters do before the story started? What happened next?
What do you enjoy about writing fanfic?
: These days it's a great deal about the feedback. I'd still write but not as quickly if I didn't have someone saying, "More!" Somebody famous said that authors write the books they want to read. I re-read my own stuff quite regularly. It's revisiting favorite daydreams.
Why have you chosen to write about Spike? What do you find interesting about his character?
OK, I'll be utterly shallow, he's the hottest thing I've seen in an eon, and I want to play with him. I just have to come up with a valid way to do it. He says (or used to say) he's evil, but his actions don't always bear that out. His motivations intrigue me.
What other characters or relationships do you find most interesting to write?
I'm a massive Spike/Xander fan, primarily, closely followed by Wes/Gunn. I can write het stuff, but the only couple that pleased me on the show was Cordy/Xander.
Of the work you've written, which piece is your favorite? Why?
This is a pretty off-the-cuff answer, because there is favorite in regards to story and favorite in regards to technique/craft. For craft/technique/keeping all the strands together, my favorite is the Career Change series, because I had to place foreshadowings in logical places and not leave any loose ends. For story, my favorite is Touch, where I finally gave Spike and Xander the fairly happy ending that my schmoopy heart wanted to give them but which strict discipline wouldn't let me do in Steam.
Which piece was the most difficult to write? Why?
The current installment of Career Advancement, because the roadmap is going off into total AU, and it's got to be believable without being boring.
What are your strengths and weaknesses as a fanfic writer?
People say my character voices are good, but that's because they live in my head and I'm just taking dictation. I'm pretty proud of my convoluted plots. I think I'm lacking in description and atmospherics. I forget that the reader isn't living in my head and doesn't see the background I can see. Do you feel that your work has improved as time has passed? If so, in what areas do you think you have improved the most?
Oh, gosh, yes. Plausibility. Keeping a character's actions within believable parameters. I don't see the change so much in my Buffy work, but the early Star Wars stuff--let's just say I burnt those notebooks. The world did not need to be burdened.
What do you find to be the most difficult aspect of writing fanfic?
Having the courage to believe in my own plot line and not being afraid of what the readership will say.
What advice would you give to new fic writers?
Don't be afraid of the dreaded Original Female Character, ie, Mary Sue. If you're any kind of reader, you'll soon realize where you're going wrong with the story and characterizations and you'll prune off the more unlikely developments and turn Mary Sue into a believable character. And bad writing is worth the effort so long as it builds to good writing.
Do you read other fanfic? If so, what are some of your favorite stories and/or authors?
The only fic I make a point of looking for is Harry Potter fic. "Draco has an epiphany and discovers that so-and-so is pretty hot, as well" stuff. Draco/Harry, Draco/Neville, Draco/Hermione even!
Do you write original fiction? Or fiction in other fandoms? (If so, where can we find it?)
I have some original fic on my hard drive that I contemplate every now and then before going back to a story that is less demanding.
I have a great many stories in the universe of The Equalizer (http://www.geocities.com/blue_sky_divers/contents.htm
) under the name Connie. They don't suck, and I need to finish them.