I’ve mentioned a few times in a few places that I’m working on getting my old fic more in order. One of the reasons is I simply have too much fic spread over too many places, and too many stories written over too long a period of time. For instance, I think, teach and write (in the offline, scholarly sense) a good bit about theodicy, so a fanfic out of synch with what I currently think on the issue, or think a certain character would think. So while I’m not going back and rewriting every story, I am doing that sometime. More often, I’m just skimming it for typos. I have a learning disability that means I often see what I am thinking rather than what’s really on the screen, and I struggle mightily to get my homophones right.
(Case in point: the first time I typed this paragraph, I typed homophobe rather than homophone. Usually I don’t catch these things.)
Anyway, all that means that –even with the best betas– I can sometimes improve a story by tweaking it. I also wanted to thank my betas and get that info anywhere the stories were archived, and also in many cases I have pretty thorough timelines of my personal views of different characters, it’s just spread out over lots of different stories. For instance, with Boromir I have probably 25-30 stories about Boromir, ranging from “Inheritances” (about the naming ceremony where he’s first presented to Gondor) through Catharsis, which is about his boat’s final journey down the Anduin and beyond. Some are drabbles, but some are also substantial stories by my standards that tell you a lot about what I imagine Boromir’s backstory to be. So I wanted to start putting together a master list of fic. That was actually one of the driving considerations behind setting up a WordPress blog. Not the only one, but a big part of it – I thought I could have more of a “home base” for sharing my art and other things about my life.
I’m not sure I’m quite there, yet. I started with the intention of posting my old stories to this blog, and then putting up a page of links as one of the main “pages” (what you see using the links at the top of the http://www.fidesquaerens.org/ blog). That turned out to be a lot of work, and not particularly effective. (It didn’t have a great way to sort things, for one thing, and had all the challenges of commenting on any post here for people not comfortable with the format. I did create a spreadsheet with all of my stories, summaries, betas (so far as I can track down), and links to the most up-to-date version of the story, so I have the info pretty well sorted at this point; I’m just not sure how to best use it.
For the moment I’ve put together a page with links to all my stories. Mostly those links are to PDF’s in my Dropbox folder (essentially, an online hard drive where I can link to a certain file on my computer rather than a webpage. As I get them edited I’ll probably be switching over to AO3 links, which has several practical benefits. You can read and comment without having an account, for instance, and they allow the fic I’ve written in non-Tolkien fandoms. They also have a pretty thorough way of searching for fics – much more than I can offer here. SO the thought is I’d put together a chronological list (basically) of my fiction and post links to the stories somewhere else.
There’s a part of me that would like my own archive here, just because I think it would be a good addition to this site. Even saying I don’t go that route, I’m not sure how I feel about the chronology. It’s too long, for one thing, and tends to jump around from character to character (Aragorn’s years in Harad, for instance, are pretty well mixed in with the goings-on in Gondor of around that same period.) Part of me wonders whether it wouldn’t be better to list by characters or some other way.
So I’m asking two things here? First, what do you want to see as far as fics? Is the current chronology a good setup? (Go to http://www.fidesquaerens.org >> Fanfic.) Do you want it organized a different way? What are you looking for here?
And more importantly, if you’ve set up your own archive or anything similar on your own site, do you recommend it? What do you use and are you happy with it?
I’m very open to ideas on this front.