syllic: ([sga] ronon how i love you)
[personal profile] syllic
To begin, this is my first DW post since the year of our lorde 2009, I think.

I am excited about that, and also about this entire exchange. Thank you for offering these characters and these fandoms.

This letter is incredibly long; please don't feel like you have to heed any of it. It's mostly a feelsfest about these characters I love: characters that you, lovely assigned writer/artist person, hopefully love too. I also realise my letter is biased toward fic; please rest assured I would be thrilled to receive art. As someone who really has very limited artistic skills, I think I skew toward what I know in this letter, but art is wonderful and amazing and powerful, and would be a gift. I've tried to say as much about art I would enjoy as an avid visual consumer with no talent can!

Stolen from letters past: I’ll get the “things I don’t enjoy at all” out of the way first. They are: gore/extreme violence/rape/abuse/hatred/cruelty/discrimination/unrelenting injustice.

I would strongly prefer a story that does not end in, or exclusively deal with, death and/or sadness. I’ll go ahead and share a thing of mine, which is that They Lived A Happy Life Until One of Them Died But the Emphasis of This Fic Was on Their Happy Life, So Think of That fic tends to hit me right in the gut and haunt me for days. I get that death is an inevitable part of life—and art—but fic is my unrealistic happy place, I guess. I have read fic like that in the past and found it powerful, but I don’t prefer it.

On to the things I enjoy (exclamation point). Found families and teams and groups of people working their way through life together, pining that resolves, dorks, epistolary fic of all sorts, strong friendships based on a sense of utter trust and knowledge of each other, crossovers, women who know who they are and take no prisoners, women who are figuring out who they are and take no prisoners, women who take prisoners because that's life sometimes, curtainfic, supernatural creatures (why not), hijinks and shenanigans-dialogue, the-enemy-of-my-enemy-is-fuck-you-only-I-get-to-antagonise-that-person-I-will-smite-all-other-enemies, kidfic, Regency, friends-to-lovers, AUs, dangerously competent people, grew-up-together fic.

Trope on, Tropey McTroperson: amnesia, woke-up-married, pretend-to-be-dating, pretend-not-to-be-dating, arranged marriage, best friends who have seen each other through every awkward phase and come out in love.

If you’re writing sex, I can genuinely get into pretty much every kink that doesn’t involve scat or vomit or severe bodily harm or diapers or infantilising. I like healthy and respectful explorations of sexual power dynamics, in all their forms. I also enjoy plain old-fashioned lurve making. Also, makeouts 4 life.

In art, I love bold colours and bold strokes; I am equally fond of sparse, clean lines as I am of lush, crowded canvases (which I appreciate is slightly contradictory). I love art that captures people in a moment—a certain twist of the mouth, a light in the eyes, a freeze-frame of their limbs as they realise something. All media are okay, of course! And stealing something directly from the lovely stepquietly: "And if you feel you want to leave an explanatory note, that's great too, particularly if this is something where you've done something specific and would like to point to it. (I'd love that, actually.)"

If you have specific questions about me, nicolasechs, best of wives is your woman.

Onward to the specific fandoms/characters I have requested:

Inception, Yusuf:
Like many people (I think) who got into this fandom from its... inception (sorry; I started writing this sentence and then), I was fascinated by the idea behind dreamsharing: how had it been developed? How common, really, was the seemingly common knowledge about it? Were there still people out there experimenting to see what else could be done with it? I know a lot of these questions were answered canonically by things like DVD extras, but I never looked at those things, and to me it's still a completely open, intriguing set of possibilities.

Of all the people in the film, Yusuf and Ariadne were the only ones who seemed as fascinated as I was, but where Ariadne was fascinated because she was a new arrival, I always got the sense Yusuf had Seen Shit, and was still intrigued and amazed by dreamsharing every day. I don't think his intelligence got explored anywhere near enough; I don't think I would ever get tired of hearing about how he came to host(? run? participate in?) a dream den in Mombasa; I want to know why he'd agree to Cobb's demand that they all do something as patently stupid as crime-dream three levels deep while heavily sedated—was it really because Cobb offered him his share?

For art: I loved the possibilities that the film opened in terms of being able to put the characters everywhere; I loved many of the Mombasa sequences. I love the sharpness of Yusuf's gaze, contrasted with the softness of his face.

Basically, Yusuf. Being curious. Fleshed out (which is the whole point of this challenge, I guess). I would love to see more of him, wherever that takes you: whether it's to a piece only about Yusuf or to something that explores his relationship(s) with someone else (whether they're a film character or an OC).

Marvel Cinematic Universe, Sam Wilson:
SAM. My most favourite level-headed person in a sea of dramatic, fucking ridiculous assholes.

I love the... absolute certainty of self that Sam exhibits, and the way he becomes an orienting force for the people around him, who can barely wipe their own asses half the time (Natasha excepted). I appreciate the way he is able to commit to a cause (or, let's be real, to a person) because it/they call to him in some fundamental way, because he thinks it matters. I lived for every moment in Civil War when Sam was the voice of, "Are you children fucking kidding me?" (I mean, it was implied, I felt), and I appreciated the brotherly, steady acceptance he showed Bucky (and the shit he gave him). Sam, to me, is generous from the moment he appears in Winter Soldier, and I have a not-insignificant crush on him for it.

I'd love—love—a fic where Sam makes his way to the Avengers in some alternate way, maybe because someone at S.H.I.E.L.D. identified that Falcon was living a quiet life and thought they could make use of him (only to find out no-one "makes use" of Sam Wilson if he doesn't damn well want to be made use of). I would love to see something exploring his time at the VA. I have endless time for Sam and Natasha, and like many people I think Steve Rogers could do no better than Sam (though Sam could definitely do better than Steve, in lots of ways).

Visually, I loved every moment in the films where Sam's body and face said a million things while he stood loyally by other people making stupid decisions.

If you are intrigued by both Sam and T'Challa, SO AM I, and I would love fic/art that deals with the two of them: how they're making sense of the post-Civil War world; what happens when Sam is finally able to ask all the questions about cats that are clearly behind his eyes every time he looks T'Challa's way.

Basically: Sam Wilson, living.

Psych, Gus
So I started watching Psych one weird, rainy afternoon because an episode was on Sky at my parents' house, and it has subsequently been a comfort go-to for me during different periods of my life. When I finished my first binge-watch (back in the days before binging was easy) of I think the first two seasons, I went online and found a bunch of Shawn/... Lassiter fic? I was not surprised surprised, but I was firmly in the realm of what the fuck as I clicked through the (short) reclists.

Grew-up-together, can-read-each-other-in-the-eyebrows shit is so deeply in my id (I think it probably has something to do, simultaneously, with being a kind of lonely/under-understood kid and having a really close relationship with my brother) that I can't even express it. It's why I'm drawn to Bucky/Steve despite how problematic it can be, and it's EVERYTHING I love about Psych.

Anything with kid!Gus and Shawn would be swell. Gus and Shawn falling in love is sweller. Gus essentially being endlessly patient but also helplessly drawn to Shawn's ridiculousness; Gus hanging out with Mr. Spencer. Gus' boring job at the pharma company: he's secretly incredibly successful, which is why he can get away with so much shit, and saving for his and Shawn's retirement because he knows someone is going to have to fund their shenanigans when they're in walkers (I know canonically we've seen Gus' bosses being unhappy with him, but maybe he's secretly his bosses' boss?).

Things I love visually about the show: the ridiculous use of space when Shawn and Gus are crammed in cars and closets and in awkward situations, eyes wild as the camera swoops in on them. The colours of Santa Barbara (well, "Santa Barbara") and the way they made use of architecture with a strong Hispanic influence.

(&always interested in How any of Gus' nicknames came to be: a history.)

Hannibal, Beverly Katz
I spent April and May basically mainlining Hannibal with my hands partially covering my eyes (and my hands 100% clutching helplessly at my hair and chest).

(spoilers)

My displeasure at Beverly's death can also only be measured in the 100%. I don't understand why she had to die (though again, I wasn't surprised surprised), though I do think that she was way too smart to do anything but figure Hannibal out.

Beverly strikes me as a woman who is constantly questioning what she's doing, and how well she's doing it, and why she's doing it, and as someone who is definitely always questioning the system; someone who resists going with the flow because she knows how harmful it can be. I can't imagine a life where she didn't have to work her ass off to get where she is in the FBI, and I think she shows incredibly sharpness of perception in her dealings with Will: sometimes you get the sense she sees him as fully as Hannibal does. I think she must have a vibrantly powerful mind and an incredibly intriguing inner life.

So: AU where Beverly doesn't die! Exploring how she got to where she is; exploring her friendship or relationship with Will. Exploring how competent she is; exploring how exasperated she must be by others at times. Fic about being the sharpest—if not the most unique—mind in the room half the time in Hannibal, and what that feels like.

Uh, visually Hannibal is basically a feast the entire time, as anyone who has watched the show knows. The beauty actually kept me going when the plot was trying my patience or emotional endurance. Any art that captures the dense darkness of the show, or that explores any of its visual motifs, would be delightful. Any art that takes Beverly out of that context—a scene at home? Somewhere she lived when she was younger?—would be fascinating!

Beverly! basically.

(...Gus! Sam! Yusuf!)


Seeing Colour friend, I’ve given you a lot not with an expectation that you will pick any of it up but in case it helps in any way; I’m someone who likes lots of ideas and information about people I'm writing for. If you’re not, fly free! Fly far! Whatever you write will be GREAT and I shall be delighted. Thank you so much again.
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