Panem-Propaganda

The Wall of Capitol Portraits

Complete

Author Spotlight: sponsormusings

This feature is a collaboration with panempropaganda and everlarkedalways as part of Panem Propaganda’s 100 Days of Mockingjay: Shipping and Fanfiction.

This interview is a companion piece to an article written for Panem Propaganda, available at X.

With many thanks to panempropaganda, everlarkedalways, and sponsormusings

Graphic by everlarkedalways​. Interview by papofglencoe.

[Ed. note: I have retained the British English spelling in sponsormusings’ answers.]

***********************

“She is everything. She has given the fandom not only some of the sweetest AU’s, but she is also a great friend. Social Standing… was so in character, probably more than any [other] AU I’ve read. And… the ending, which I love! It’s the best work of any kind that I’ve read set during that time.” -chele20035

What is so unique or special about Everlark to you?

I think it’s because- both together and individually- they represent overcoming all the odds, overcoming adversity. They represent how the world around us can affect our lives in ways we can never imagine, represent how even one person can make a difference. They represent hope.

Basically, I love them to pieces, and I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to completely explain why they mean so much to me. I guess over three books, they just crept up on me.

What inspired you to write Everlark fanfiction in the first place?

I think, like so many others, I got to the end of Mockingjay, and I was absolutely desperate for more. I couldn’t remember the last time something had stayed with me so strongly, and while I didn’t actively go looking for fanfiction, when I stumbled upon it, it was like everything inside me said “Yes, this is good.”

Prior to that, it had been over ten years since I’d written something creatively, and while I enjoyed reading other people’s stories, the urge to write reared its head. After such a long dormant period of creativity, I didn’t want to ignore it - I really wanted to follow through with that desire to write. So I did.

What’s your personal favorite of your own fics and why? What inspired it?

This is actually a pretty hard question, because I’m not the most objective when it comes to my own fics! I’ve got a soft spot for a few different ones, for a variety of reasons. But if I had to choose, I would have to say Drifting Between Grey and Blue- mostly because it’s a story I always love writing, and those versions of Katniss and Peeta have come to mean a lot to me. Plus, it allows me to explore and develop the supporting characters, which I enjoy.

I originally started it for Fandom4LLS in 2013 - at the time, I was on holiday in Europe, and I was struggling to come up with an idea for my submission. I had about three different false starts, and then dashed out the opening scene with no idea of what it really was, or where the story would go.

Two days later, I was standing on a sidewalk in Barcelona, staring up at Casa Battló, a house designed by the amazing Antonio Gaudi. Now, my husband is a big art gallery buff- me, I can last about two hours, tops. But standing in front of that building, I just remember thinking, “This is art. Architecture is art. This is my art gallery.” And the idea of Peeta as an architect was like a big lightbulb suddenly turning on. As odd as it may sound, within five minutes, the story had virtually unfolded in my head. It’s grown and expanded since then, but for the most part, a brightly coloured house on Passeig de Gràcia was my primary inspiration in its inception.

What’s the greatest challenge for you to writing Everlark?

I think it’s always a struggle to make sure I keep Everlark in character in a modern AU.  Characterisation is something I really try to focus on a lot, because I cherish these characters as SC wrote them. I’ve agonised at times over my interpretations of Katniss and Peeta, wondering would they really say that/do that/think that/act that way? There is absolutely a sense of flexibility in AUs, of course, because Katniss and Peeta aren’t bound by the rules of Panem and the Games. But to always retain that essence of them can sometimes be a challenge for me.

Plus, you know. Smut. That’s one hell of a struggle, lol.

When you’re pushing the limits of character or situation, what ineffable traits of Katniss and Peeta/Everlark do you keep intact to preserve their characters?

Katniss’ strength, her fierce loyalty, her stubbornness, her need to protect, whether it be herself or those she loves. For Peeta, his innate sense of good, his desire to help others, his charm, his way with words - or sometimes struggling with the loss of them.

What’s your favorite Everlark trope and why?

That would undoubtedly be the ‘Haters to Lovers’ trope! There is nothing my Pride and Prejudice-loving heart craves more than watching Everlark bitch and fight and be snarky with each other, only to be madly in love by the end of the story.

What is an Everlark fanfic that has stayed with you? Why?

I’m going with a sentimental favourite here, simply because it was what led me to finally take that plunge and write. Salanderjade’s The Green and the Gold was the first WiP I ever read back in 2012, and she pulled me in with her beautiful, descriptive words set in a pre-epilogue canon world. She was also the first author I ever reached out to, and as a result, we’re still good friends to this day. So that fic is one that will always stay with me.

Another would be Five Loaves of Bread: Dark Toast, by aimmyarrowshigh. The world building was terrific, the story intriguing, the development between Everlark realistic and when I finished it, it stayed with me for days. But please, I can’t talk about the ending to The Good Wife [from silvercistern’s The Ashes of District Twelve]. Now that has always stayed with me. (Oh no, now I want to cry).

What is your favorite Everlark headcanon or fanon?

Just picking one is an absolute killer! But…I like to think that in Mockingjay, after Katniss had cried herself to sleep when Buttercup returns, that the reason she finds herself in her bed the next morning is because Peeta carried her there. And I like to think that Haymitch was 100% a substitute grandfather, and that the knowledge that the toastbabies would never have the worry of being reaped helped him to heal from a lot of his demons.

sponsormusings is the author of works such as Contract Clause, Drifting Between Grey and Blue, and Portrait of a Victor. She is on AO3, FF and tumblr as sponsormusings.

2

Since the Dark Days, our great nation has known only peace. Ours is an elegant system, we seek to knowledge and protect.

UNITY

Your districts are the body, the Capitol is the beating heart.

PROSPERITY

Your hard work feeds us, and in return we feed and protect you.

SACRIFICE

But if you resist the system you’ll starve yourself. If you fight against it, it is you who will bleed.

I know you will stand with me, with us, with all of us.

Panem today. Panem tomorrow. Panem forever.

Author Spotlight: fnurfnur

This feature is a collaboration with panempropaganda and everlarkedalways as part of Panem Propaganda’s 100 Days of Mockingjay: Shipping and Fanfiction.

This interview is a companion piece to an article written for Panem Propaganda, available at X.

With many thanks to panempropaganda, everlarkedalways, and fnurfnur.

Graphic by everlarkedalways. Interview by papofglencoe.

***********************

“[T]he first Everlark fanfiction I ever read was The Little Match Boy… omg the tears! I loved it. I will read anything written by her, sure that I will enjoy it.”     -joshs-left-earlobe

What is so unique or special about Everlark to you?

I have always seen a lot of myself in Katniss, especially the imperfect, problematic qualities. And Peeta himself is not perfect, as much as fanfiction and Peeta lovers would try to convince you otherwise. But these two people, despite their imperfections and everything they have been through, still love each other and fight for each other. There’s something incredibly comforting in that- that two people who have been through so much hardship and who are incredibly flawed and human can still have life-changing, all-encompassing love. It may not be “happily ever after” like a fairy tale, but life so rarely is.

What inspired you to write Everlark fanfiction in the first place?

I read HG fanfic for almost a year before I tried to write it. At first I only read canon fanfic, then I branched out to AUs. And there I saw so much creativity and room for interpretation, I got inspired to think of different scenarios. When one of them stuck with me- Everlark in physical therapy- and a whole world started to develop in my mind. Eventually the only way to “fix” this problem in my mind was to write it. Once I started writing fic, I got addicted.

What’s your personal favorite of your own fics and why? What inspired it?

I love (almost) all of my fics for some reason, but The People of Panem v. Katniss Everdeen is my most favorite, probably. There were two time points that I wanted fanfic to help me fill in- pre-epilogue and Katniss’s trial. Fanfic more than fulfilled pre-epilogue, and there are several fics out there that have written that part so well I consider it canon. But I never found any that covered her trial, at least not without being AU in some major element. So I tried to think how it could have happened, without changing a single element of canon. I found that working within those constraints forced me to be creative in a new way. It’s also my favorite because I worked very closely with alonglineofbread/wollaston on it- having her as a coach AND teammate AND cheerleader (a.k.a. an amazing beta and friend) was an absolutely wonderful experience. She brought out the best in that story.

What’s the greatest challenge for you to writing Everlark?

Giving them conflict. Dangit, haven’t these two kids been through enough? Can’t they just cuddle and bang and be cute and naked? But as much as we would like that, the conflict is what drives a story forward. I still have trouble doing it- I do want to write one of those fics that just rips your heart out with angst and conflict- but until then, the conflict will be relatively mild and resolved within a couple of chapters.

When you’re pushing the limits of character or situation, what ineffable traits of Katniss and Peeta/Everlark do you keep intact to preserve their characters?

That’s a good question, and probably this question is the one I’ve been mulling over the longest. I suppose it’s that Katniss is by nature an introvert and Peeta is an extrovert. Katniss draws her strength- or at least, she thinks she does- from being alone. She doesn’t need anyone to survive. But there are a few people she allows “in” for lack of a better term, and they make her stronger and more complete than when she is alone (Prim, Peeta). Peeta is an extrovert- is naturally social and gains strength from being around others. But all of those people aren’t around when he really needs help (like after the first Games). So while Katniss and Peeta have personalities that may have a fundamental difference, it’s also what brings them together. She is the person who loves him even when he’s not friendly. He is the person who loves her enough to make her friendly.

What’s your favorite Everlark trope and why?

Probably none I can say here, this is a family website. M-rated tropes are all that are coming to mind right now. I can tell you I do not enjoy the Everlark trope of Katniss being a terrible cook.

What is an Everlark fanfic that has stayed with you? Why?

There are two in-progress fics that I have truly dropped everything to read when they update (even to the point where I was once driving home from work in my 45 minute commute, saw the email notification from FFn that it updated, and pulled over to the nearest parking lot and immediately turned off the car and read the update). Those would be When the Moon Fell in Love With the Sun by porchwood/mejhiren and Anywhere I Would Have Followed You by dracoisalooker76. I know there have been others but I am woefully behind in reading fanfic now but just thinking of those two fics makes me want to crawl into bed and cry because they give me SO MANY FEELINGS. Those two writers are ridiculously talented.

What is your favorite Everlark headcanon or fanon?

I will always believe that 1) one of Peeta’s brothers was named Rye, and 2) Caesar was feeding info to District 13/the rebellion. On the second point, I remember some people having trouble with that in The People of Panem v. Katniss Everdeen and I wrote almost as many words on why I stand behind that than I wrote in the actual fic.

fnurfnur is the author of works such as Range of Motion, Surviving Death, Sweat Equity, and The People of Panem v. Katniss Everdeen. She is on AO3 and on tumblr as fnurfnur.