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An utterly stupid question

There was a guessing poll at the hd_career_fair. Quite a few of you recognised for instance fics by blamebrampton and treacle_tartlet. How did you do that? What "signs" do you look for? Do they favour certain kind of plots, often use certain words or sayings or something like that?

They're both excellent writers so I just don't believe they're repeating themselves over and over again. I read, loved and reviewed their career_fair fics but I had absolutely no idea who wrote those fics.

I think it's so much easier to recognise what heathen_arcade, naadi or red_rahl have drawn.

(There was a writer who's work I was able to recognise because she used a lot of "Harlequin style" details. Some details are perfectly fine but a list tends to be more or less amusing. In my opinion everything shouldn’t be covered in gold, silk and/or diamonds. Naturally I could be wrong and shiny is the new black.)

I tried to guess some writers and failed miserably. It's SO NOT my fault that some new writers write so well that I thought I was dealing with some writers who have written H/D for years. *mumbles* I knew just one writer for sure - and forgot to add her name to the guessing poll... I'd say I knew the fic “Heavenly Bodies” was written by leo_draconis, because I've read so many fics written by her.

Reveal your secrets, please. I feel like a total ignoramus here. I've always read a lot - actually a LOT - and I read a lot of H/D so I feel that I should know who wrote what.

I had to google my title "An utterly stupid question" because I wasn't quite sure about the word "utterly". The first result I found was "Do Bats Have Bollocks?". *sniggers* It seems to be a book so I don't know that answer either. Hee!


( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 7th, 2009 03:43 pm (UTC)

I was feeling terribly meh about my CF fic, mostly because things were a disaster during the writing of it, but also because I had wanted to write something 'different' and yet here I was doing political comedy again. And then, after I submitted it, I realised that the end was a bit like An Act of Simple Devotion, too!

I then told myself that if I couldn't be original with this one, I had at least managed funny, and so let myself off the hook. That you did not know it was me fills me with joy and glee!

As to Treacle, I think the 'tells' with her writing are the verve and romance, but that said, Pomegranate was a substantial departure from a lot of her shorter stories, and so I was impressed with the number of people who picked it as hers. I can only assume they are on her flist and know she is a chef in RL!

I REALLY want a copy of Do Bats Have Bollocks, BTW ;-) (and yes, they do.)

Nov. 7th, 2009 05:00 pm (UTC)
I wrote you an answer and used the check spelling and preview option and my answer just disappeared. I suspect a conspiracy. *nods*

Political comedy - naturally! How could I possibly miss that? *irons her ears* You most certainly did manage funny. :) On my behalf I must admit that I was almost asleep and just wanted to read about hot boysex. *cough*

I promise to read your fic again, properly. Scout's honour.

I didn't know about your friend's occupation. No wonder she knows so much about working in the kitchen. Actually too much because before reading "Kitchen confidential" and Treacle's fic I used to think that people who work in the kitchen are always calm and polite. It seems I was wrong. I'm so not saying "again" even though I probably should.

I loved, loved, loved the end of her fic! I'm planning to move in with Harry and Draco. Life might not be peaceful and quiet with them even in the country. But there will be eye candy and delicious food for me (too). I still haven't worked out why they would accept my offer. That's a minor detail, methinks.

Even the girl bats? *ponders* ;))
Nov. 7th, 2009 05:05 pm (UTC)
Just the boy ones!

Alas, I am generally a disappointment on the boysex, unless it is Sirius and Remus, when all of a sudden it is easy. I think it's because those two are about my age, while the others are all wee little bairns!
Nov. 7th, 2009 05:18 pm (UTC)
Nobody can tell a boy bat to grow a pair. Now I know. *nods solemnly*

No disappointment there. They were actually very romantic. :)

I like wee little bairns... *blushes*

I recently went to the movies with two of my colleagues. The first one is twenty one and the other one is nineteen. I simply counted their ages together! A fourty year old man is old and mature enough. Right? ;)
Nov. 7th, 2009 05:09 pm (UTC)
Just to be clear: there weren't any "Harlequin style" fics at this fair.

Or if there were I totally missed them. :)

"My precious..." *murmurs*
(Deleted comment)
Nov. 7th, 2009 05:37 pm (UTC)
That's really a relief! Thank you!

I started to think there's something seriously wrong with me. A missing piece of brain or something like that...

Is it easier for you too to recognise the drawing styles?
Nov. 7th, 2009 05:35 pm (UTC)
Hmmmm, it is tricky. I have to confess, I cheated a little with Pomegranate - people at the UK meet up said they thought it was treacle_tarlet, so I just went along with that! I wouldn't have got it otherwise!

My other guess were not so much based on writing style, which I am just a bit lame at attaching to authors, but some detective work! I guessed enchanted_jae wrote Stray Pucks because I knew she likes hockey. And The Boy Who Baked - I have no idea how, but that fic just yelled cassie_black12 at me!

The other ones, it was more like detective skills really - I looked at who beta-ed, sometimes I looked to see whether someone I thought might have written it had commented, and sometimes I just guessed! (Although, I guess leo_draconis wrong!

Nov. 7th, 2009 05:58 pm (UTC)
You attended the UK meet up? How was it? Unfortunately I couldn't make it.

So you'd say it is more detective work than genuine intuition?

I once guessed that sassy-cissa wrote a fic because it reminded me of another fic she wrote. It did also help that oldenuf2nb recommended the fic. They're friends and tend to (rightfully) praise each other's work. It's another thing that I almost got beheaded because the author's were supposed to be anonymous. I was naïf enough to think she would be flattered that someone recognised her fic. Don't get me wrong - she was but I shouldn't have posted it until the fest was over. My inner house-elf was mortified.

I loved "The Boy Who Baked"! I have to read more cassie-black12. :)
Nov. 8th, 2009 06:41 pm (UTC)
Ahh, the meetup was super fun! Hopefully you'll be able to come to the next one!

I think it's a combination of the two - sometimes when I was reading fic, I thought, this feels like X, but I could never work out why I felt that. I think it is probably about themes and structure and the cadence of people's dialogue and stuff. Unfortunately, I didn't write these thoughts down, and when I came to the guessing poll, I didn't have time to reread, so there were lots I didn't leave a guess for, even though, when reading I had an idea. Because of that, lots of my guesses were detective work, by looking again at the author's notes and betas, remembering if anyone in particular had rec'd it (like heathen_arcade said, you can often narrow it down to cliques), and then guessing!

That sounds like a terrible experience! Poor you and your house-elf!

Do! She wrote a lovely one for hd_smoochfest. I think all her fics are on her journal.
Nov. 10th, 2009 03:40 am (UTC)
Did you? Did you guess someone else wrote mine, or that I wrote a different one? Some people can spot my work- like my dear adores_draco - and I always wonder what it is that makes it recognizable. Especially since I'm awful at picking out authors. I had some ideas this time, especially about Jae's, but I'm never really accurate.
Nov. 10th, 2009 10:40 am (UTC)
I guessed you wrote P.S. I know you (I think that what it was called). It had a lovely fluffy ending, so I thought it might have been you!
Nov. 10th, 2009 03:02 pm (UTC)
Ah yes, me and my fluff!! It's a compliment, though, because I did like that fic a lot. And oddly enough, unrelated to that, I have a letter-writing fic in my WIP right now.
Nov. 7th, 2009 06:10 pm (UTC)
Yeah, art doesn't really get the anon experience, until you take it to a venue where no one knows you.

Some people have reoccurring themes or structures that make them easier to identify. Some leave clues or "hint" on their LJ to identify their story. Mostly before posting, but occasionally after. Sometimes it can be narrowed down to one of various cliques, based on who recs and betas. After that, it's a process of elimination. I used to be okay at guessing, but I've been half out of the fandom since summer.

everything shouldn’t be covered in gold, silk and/or diamonds.

HAhaha! Yes. That's one of my pet peeves. Not just shiny stuff, but any flagrant class detailing. I call it The Anne Rice Tic. Like, if a character's "rich" and pretty, half the work of characterization's knocked out. What's hilarious is when authors call a character one class, then the details miss the mark completely. My inner Marxist laughs cruelly at those moments.
Nov. 7th, 2009 07:34 pm (UTC)
"My inner Marxist laughs cruelly at those moments." I quite like your cruel inner Marxist! :))

You're probably right about the hints. I suppose I've just been oblivious to those.

When I started reading H/D I sometimes thought that a child had written a fic because some things just screamed adolescence. There was a time when most of us wanted to be princesses who lived in luxury. If real life turned out to be something else maybe drinking "Dom Pérignon from gold rimmed antique chrystal flutes while lying on VERY EXPENSIVE (haha!) silk sheets" would make the day brighter. Especially if there were two gorgeous, preferably naked young men involved. ;)

Nov. 7th, 2009 06:14 pm (UTC)
I couldn't guess any of the authors (I did guess heathen_arcade correctly for the art, but that wasn't even a guess as the style is so distinctive!), but then I've been out of the loop for so long when it comes to HP and H/D that I don't know who writes any more or where the good writers are to be found. The Career Fair has given me some excellent names to start with. :)

There are so many fantastic writers! Aah, it's good to be back. :)
Nov. 8th, 2009 02:22 pm (UTC)
There are indeed some excellent writers! :)
( 16 comments — Leave a comment )