Author has written 23 stories for Phantom of the Opera, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Wuthering Heights, Kingdom of Heaven, Nightmare Before Christmas, Misc. Movies, Batman Begins/Dark Knight, Legend, and Beauty and the Beast.
Update as of 10/17/17: Dang, guys. I'm really sorry. It's been...a while, to say the least. But I'm not dead! (cue Monty Python music)
I honestly don't know when I will find the inspiration to continue Shadows, and I sincerely apologize for that. I know a lot of you have probably given up on it (and frankly, I don't blame you one bit), although a few of you message me every so often asking about it, which I super-duper appreciate. I WILL continue and finish it at some point, of that you can be assured. I just can't make any promises on exactly when. Thanks for your continued support!
About me: People call me Heather. I like to read interesting, cerebral fare (or, at the very least, thought-provoking).
I'm a longtime member of the DBCA, which was started by Silvermasque...and if you don't know who on earth the Dramatic Black Cloak Addicts are, or are simply intrigued by the name, go to Silvermasque's profile and click on the homepage link.
Some of you might have noticed that I frequently refer to my readers as a whole as "dear ones" when speaking to them in my author's notes; I owe this entirely to Anne Rice, who addresses her readers/fans in the same manner whenever she writes an update on her website. I always liked the affectionate way it came across, and I definitely loved the sense it gave that she genuinely cares about her fans as people, rather than seeing them as faceless, unimportant ciphers (unlike, say, Andrew Lloyd Webber).
I apparently used to have this strange hang-up about slash, specifically "non-canon slash"; well, I don't anymore. I'm not sure why I ever had it in the first place. "Non-canon" slash is pretty much the same as any other "non-canon" relationship; namely, it takes a certain amount of believability to bring certain characters together in fanfic, which any skilled writer can easily bring to fruition, and in the end, just like any other "non-canon" relationship, it either works, or it doesn't, so...yeah. I'm kind of embarrassed about that, actually. (Frankly, I blame a lot of it on the way I was brought up; when we're brought up to be homophobic, we can end up acting or thinking in subtly homophobic ways without even fully realizing it. It takes time and effort to break completely free of that sort of conditioning. At any rate, I'm no longer a closed-minded jerk on the subject. In fact, I'm one of those Whovians who kind of ships Doctor/Master like it was my job. I'm also very happily bisexual - which also took time for me to realize and, in this case, joyfully accept.) If you feel bigoted or uncomfortable about any of this, feel free to skedaddle immediately.
I love: My darling girls, all things Vanessa Carlton, going to modern art museums, making music flow from my fingertips and the keys of my piano, writing poetry, and taking black-and-white photographs just because they’re nostalgically elegant.
I heartily dislike: OOC (obscenely-out-of-character) writing in a serious fic (when used humorously - as in parody - it's quite entertaining, however); when writers think fanon is canon (and woe to anyone who dares to disagree with them); writers who think every well-meant constructive criticism is a flame; etc. Also not a huge fan of anachronistic language, situations, or objects in a non-parodic fic. Anachronistic/anachronism = anything out of place in a certain period setting - like, let's just say, Romans wearing jeans. Or, for that matter, Raoul de Chagny saying "Wow."
And while we're at it, a word on OOC Raouls - Over the years, I have developed quite a soft spot for Raoul, even though Erik appeals to my more sensual nature. More than that, I think the character of Raoul is an inherently decent and intelligent fellow. I am not fond of unnecessary Raoul-bashing, except of course in humorous/parodic or very well-explained fics. And the only thing I despise more than an inexplicably drunken, wife-beating Raoul is a cheerfully stupid and airheaded (or narcissistic) Raoul. At least the former might actually be believably explained somehow by, say, a downward spiral into alcoholism or some such thing, maybe revealing a darker side of his character if written well. But there is pretty much no excuse on God's green earth for the annoyingly idiotic and stubborn naivete some writers like to give him in the interest of making him undesirable to Christine; sorry, but that's just a little too over-the-top for me. Very rarely do I ever enjoy a fic where he's written in such a way. (Ex: "But Little Lotte, how could you not wish to be my wife? You must be delirious from exhaustion to be having second thoughts. Come, eat some chocolates and kiss me and I promise to forget you ever even hinted at such an unthinkable thing, my duck.") Come on, seriously - Raoul may be an idealist, but he's certainly no obnoxiously half-witted fool - nor does he worship himself. You may think you're being "nice" to Raoul by giving him a bubble-gummy, egocentric personality and no brain instead of getting creative with much darker traits, but the truth is, that nonsense is still Raoul-bashing - just a different (and quite frankly, a FAR more irritating and unrealistic) sort.
Another pet peeve of mine is the common mix-up of the words "lay" and "lie." The distinction can be confusing, but it is not impossible to memorize.
Lay: to set down, to put down. Infinitive: to lay. Ex: I want to lay my books on the table. Present tense: lay/lays. Ex: I will lay myself down now/He lays me down gently. Past tense: laid. Ex: He laid me down gently. Perfect tense: have/has laid. Ex: I have laid the paper on your desk/She has laid the spoon on the counter. Gerund: laying. Ex: I am laying this book on the table.
INCORRECT USAGES of the word lay/laid: Will you lay with me?/He lay me down gently/I laid with him/We are laying together/I have laid in bed for hours. WRONG, WRONG, WRONG! Here's why:
Lie: to recline; also to engage in sexual intercourse. Infinitive: to lie. Ex: I want to lie down. Present tense: lie/lies. Ex: I will lie with you/She lies in bed, sleeping. Past tense (this is where it gets confusing): lay. Ex: He lay with me. Perfect tense: have/has lain. Ex: I have lain in bed all day. Gerund: lying. Ex: We are lying in bed together.
(Of course, if by "lie" we mean "to tell a falsehood," then the present tense is "lie/lies," the past tense is "lied," and the perfect tense is "have/has lied." But that's not what we're talking about here.)
Rule of thumb: "Lay" is only a present tense verb when it refers to a direct object (i.e. a book - She lays the book upon the table/I lay the book upon the table). When the word "lay" refers to the subject (i.e. he/she/I, etc.) it is always used as the past tense of the verb "to lie" (She lay down; he lay with me). However, it is possible to make the subject into a direct object. Hence "I will lay myself down now" is correct (direct object form), as is "I will lie down now." (subject form.) The incorrect versions of those sentences would be "I will lie myself down now" and "I will lay down now." More to the point, consider the context. If you're talking about putting or setting something down, then follow the rules of the verb "to lay." If you're talking about reclining or having sex, then follow the rules of the verb "to lie."
Make sense? If not, I wouldn't worry too much, honestly. This sort of thing can take years for some people (coughevenyourstrulycough) to get down pat.
Close Encounters of the Self-Insertion Kind-- Phantom of the Opera. Written on a dare from MTL, filled with DBCA in-jokes and poking fun at self, but it's just hard to find inspiration for it anymore, since it was begun when I was very single and not yet in college, and therefore the self-insertion character of me is from a completely different era of my life. Ergo, in order to keep writing it, I'd have to keep the old me in-character, writing about myself as though I were STILL single and not yet in college. Which is quite hard, because it's like writing about a different person and pretending it's still me. I've thought seriously about deleting it, but I'm rather fond of some of its aspects, so I'll probably keep it on the site just for nostalgic purposes.
Oneshots (oldest to newest):
Passion Rules The World's End-- Phantom of the Opera, 2004 film. One day while watching the Point of No Return scene, I was lightning-struck with inspiration and raced to my computer, typing frantically. Simply a few detailed emotions and events, nothing more. Read if you enjoy slight angst.
The Cruelest Fate-- My only Phantom AU to date, besides Blackened. Can't describe it much better here than in the summary, really... Introspective angst, as per my usual.
The Masquerade-- Phantom of the Opera. One of those late-night inspiration deals when I couldn't sleep, so I decided to write a poem about Gerik's emotions during his appearance, dressed as Red Death.
Awakening-- My only Lord of the Rings work to date (since I don't dare to try my hand at anything multi-chaptered--my knowledge of Tolkien's world, while respectable enough, is nowhere near as vast or as detailed as I would like it to be). Written for the DBCA Woven Into Song Challenge, and, for reasons unknown to me, won first place, for which I am happy, but confused.
In My Dark-- Oneshot, Phantom of the Opera, 2004 film. This is no longer going to ever be expanded into a full-length Erik/Giry story, although I may eventually write a story along those lines that references loosely back to this as a kind of prologue.
Oh, What Is Love?-- My first and likely only Harry Potter piece, written for the DBCA Reality Bites Contest an age and a half ago, and won third place. Set in a slightly AU Order of the Phoenix (book) environment, for those who might be wondering. An unlikely pairing, written for the express purpose of shocking the hockeysticks out of you and procuring many a hearty laugh.
The Lip O'erhanging the Abyss-- Based upon heavy suggestions from Wuthering Heights, my favorite classic novel besides Jane Eyre. An interlude between Cathy and Heathcliff on the moor. One of those bursts of canon-induced inspiration again, also carrying scant, bareboned hints from the 1992 film starring Ralph Fiennes and Juliette Binoche--but so scant, in fact, that I avoided mentioning it in the summary or author's note because I didn't think such supremely subtle undertones were prevalent or obvious enough in the piece to garner mentioning--after all, 99.99 percent of the inspiration came from canon, not from the film. I included that random bit of information here, however, because as you can see from some of the below explanations, I rather like providing extra tidbits of trivia about my works outside the works themselves on occasion.
The Eyes-- Phantom of the Opera. Written for the Mort Rouge contest, didn't win an award of any kind, but I rather like it anyway, though the fact that such graphic morbidity came from my head caught me off guard. At the risk of giving it away, the ending was inspired by a sort of subconscious cross between The Lovely Bones and a brilliant idea from The Grasshopper's phic Confessions of A Mary Sue, although in Confessions, it inspires a sort of morbid hilarity. Like a few of my older fics, this one is due for a serious makeover. (This was written back when I still had absolutely no problem just switching between POVs without a line break, like a hamster on a sugar-high.)
Blackened-- My attempt at a Phantomish bit of fanpoetry. It turned out rather wonderfully, as my poems go, but the quality is nowhere near that of a particularly amazing poem by Gondolier in my Favorites, entitled The Nacken's Song.
Similitude-- My first Kingdom of Heaven piece, an attempt to climb inside Sibylla's complex and nearly dichotomic skin, to see what she sees. The reference to beard-plucking, which no one will probably understand except students of medievalism, is my hearkening back to a deliciously fascinating historical tidbit that I learned my senior year in high school. In Spanish IV, whilst reading excerpts from El Cid, we learned that during that time period, to pluck a man's beard in public was one of the worst insults that could be paid. I should probably include that rather pertinent fact in the author's note, but I think I'll just leave it here so that fans can stumble upon it sometime whilst perusing my profile and feel about the same as someone who finds an "Easter egg" (hidden extra, if you will) on a DVD.
Dying Sacrament-- Phantom of the Opera. E/C, mostly. Written for the DBCA Smutfest Challenge. Based upon the assumption in Kay's novel that when Christine went back to see Erik for the last time before he died, they had a bit of a tryst, if you will. More sensual than smutty, really.
Tell Me Truly-- Phantom of the Opera. First place in the DBCA Pet Peeve Challenge, which I gave birth to when inspired by Soignante's forum about phanfictional pet peeves. Basically the point was to write a parodic phic incorporating into its structure such supreme annoyances as frequent character name misspellings, fanonical inaccuracies, anachronisms, Mary Sues, and Raoul-bashing, just to name a few. I had a devilishly good time writing it, let me tell you...ah, such catharsis resulted. Perhaps you should write one too. Or for a good laugh just go check out the C2 of twisted humor while you wait (the pen-name is in bold just so's you don't get confused), which purposefully boasts some of the worst phanfictions ever written.
Fail Me Fondly--The sequel to Tell Me Truly, written when I was fed up (or should I say, phed up) with some more phanfictional pet peeves and just downright bored, so it's not quite as cohesive or well-thought-out, though it was still fun, and, I hope, funny. I'm mightily tempted to write an even worse third one sometime, just to make it a trilogy. :)
Insupportable--The Ten Commandments. You know, that corny epic 1950s film about the Biblical figure of Moses, starring Charlton Heston and Yul Brynner? The one networks like to show on TV around Easter for some reason? Yeah. That one. This fic involves Ramses' and Nefretiri's (as they're portrayed in the film) sexual relationship, something that is alluded to constantly in the film but not exactly spelled out for obvious reasons (1950s family-friendliness, anyone?), and always sort of held a kind of perverse fascination for me nonetheless--here are two people forced into marriage (in the film) by royal convention who really can't stand each other emotionally, but are quite obviously sexually attracted to each other (although Ramses' sexual attraction is obvious and Nefretiri's much more veiled). It just always struck me as a delightfully twisted dynamic.
(The funny thing is, in real life, the actual historical figures enjoyed a very mutually respectful, tender, loving relationship - something I only found out very recently by browsing Wikipedia. I suppose Cecil B. DeMille thought that wouldn't make for much drama when he directed TTC - and he was probably right, but it irks me how full the film is of itself - it always did, even before I found out about the numerous blatant historical inaccuracies.)
Shadow over Gotham--Dark Knight. Sort of an AU prequel, in which an old girlfriend of the Joker's from the days before he took on the persona runs into him entirely by coincidence, having thought him dead for a decade. It could probably use some revision, as I'm not entirely sure I captured Heath!Joker's personality in its entirety, though I'm more or less satisfied with his speech patterns.
The Dream--Legend. This movie is something of an '80s fantasy cult classic (and incidentally, the theatrical version bites - it's not even worth watching. The director's cut is incredible - even the music is entirely different, and far more cerebral. The theatrical version is a choppy, second-rate film, with mediocre, in-all-the-wrong-places electronic music by some obscure '80s band called Tangerine Dream. The director's cut is actually a marvelous, coherent film, with beautiful, haunting, and most importantly, entirely appropriate music by the composer Jerry Goldsmith). At any rate, this oneshot explores the dynamic of secret longings, and how at times they can bring back our worst memories. I'd hesitate to call this a Lilly/Darkness fic outright - but it does carry a definite miasma of such--or perhaps more appropriately, a foreboding, if you will.
Vignettes: Rescue--Beauty and the Beast (the Disney version). This is intended to be the first in a series (we'll see how creative I get). The Vignettes are basically meant to explore certain scenes a bit more deeply, as well as flesh out in-between events that are never shown or only implied. This particular Vignette deals with the Beast coming to Belle's rescue after she flees from the castle and is pursued by the wolves. I don't know yet if all the Vignettes are going to be from his point of view or not - more than likely at least one or two will be from hers, although I enjoy delving into the Beast's character much more better, as Jack Sparrow would say.
If you can't stand those "If you... , put this in your profile" things, put this in your profile. :)
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