they could do with some more mundane things like shower scenes

Dead Fandoms, Part 3

Read Part One of Dead Fandoms here. 

Read Part Two of Dead Fandoms here. 

Before we continue, I want to add the usual caveat that I actually don’t want to be right about these fandoms being dead. I like enthusiasm and energy and it’s a shame to see it vanish.

Mists of Avalon

Remember that period of time of about 15 years, where absolutely everybody read this book and was obsessed with it? It could not have been bigger, and the fandom was Anne Rice huge, overlapping for several years with USENET and the early World Wide Web…but it’s since petered out. 

Mists of Avalon’s popularity may be due to the most excellent case of hitting a demographic sweet spot ever. The book was a feminist retelling of the Arthurian Mythos where Morgan Le Fay is the main character, a pagan from matriarchal goddess religions who is fighting against encroaching Christianity and patriarchal forms of society coming in with it. Also, it made Lancelot bisexual and his conflict is how torn he is about his attraction to both Arthur and Guinevere.

Remember, this novel came out in 1983 – talk about being ahead of your time! If it came out today, the reaction from a certain corner would be something like “it is with a heavy heart that I inform you that tumblr is at it again.”

Man, demographically speaking, that’s called “nailing it.” It used to be one of the favorite books of the kind of person who’s bookshelf is dominated by fantasy novels about outspoken, fiery-tongued redheaded women, who dream of someday moving to Scotland, who love Enya music and Kate Bush, who sell homemade needlepoint stuff on etsy, who consider their religious beliefs neo-pagan or wicca, and who have like 15 cats, three of which are named Isis, Hypatia, and Morrigan.

This type of person is still with us, so why did this novel fade in popularity? There’s actually a single hideous reason: after her death around 2001, facts came out that Marion Zimmer Bradley abused her daughters sexually. Even when she was alive, she was known for defending and enabling a known child abuser, her husband, Walter Breen. To say people see your work differently after something like this is an understatement – especially if your identity is built around being a progressive and feminist author.


I try to break up my sections on dead fandoms into three parts: first, I explain the property, then explain why it found a devoted audience, and finally, I explain why that fan devotion and community went away. Well, in the case of Robotech, I can do all three with a single sentence: it was the first boy pilot/giant robot Japanimation series that shot for an older, teenage audience to be widely released in the West. Robotech found an audience when it was the only true anime to be widely available, and lost it when became just another import anime show. In the days of Crunchyroll, it’s really hard to explain what made Robotech so special, because it means describing a different world.

Try to imagine what it was like in 1986 for Japanime fans: there were barely any video imports, and if you wanted a series, you usually had to trade tapes at your local basement club (they were so precious they couldn’t even be sold, only traded). If you were lucky, you were given a script to translate what you were watching. Robotech though, was on every day, usually after school. You want an action figure? Well, you could buy a Robotech Valkyrie or a Minmei figure at your local corner FAO Schwartz. 

However, the very strategy that led to it getting syndicated is the very reason it was later vilified by the purists who emerged when anime became a widespread cultural force: strictly speaking, there actually is no show called “Robotech.” Since Japanese shows tend to be short run, say, 50-60 episodes, it fell well under the 80-100 episode mark needed for syndication in the US. The producer of Harmony Gold, Carl Macek, had a solution: he’d cut three unrelated but similar looking series together into one, called “Robotech.” The shows looked very similar, had similar love triangles, used similar tropes, and even had little references to each other, so the fit was natural. It led to Robotech becoming a weekday afternoon staple with a strong fandom who called themselves “Protoculture Addicts.” There were conventions entirely devoted to Robotech. The supposed shower scene where Minmei was bare-breasted was the barely whispered stuff of pervert legend in pre-internet days. And the tie in novels, written with the entirely western/Harmony Gold conception of the series and which continued the story, were actually surprisingly readable.

The final nail in the coffin of Robotech fandom was the rise of Sailor Moon, Toonami, Dragonball, and yes, Pokemon (like MC Hammer’s role in popularizing hip hop, Pokemon is often written out of its role in creating an audience for the next wave of cartoon imports out of insecurity). Anime popularity in the West can be defined as not a continuing unbroken chain like scifi book fandom is, but as an unrelated series of waves, like multiple ancient ruins buried on top of each other (Robotech was the vanguard of the third wave, as Anime historians reckon); Robotech’s wave was subsumed by the next, which had different priorities and different “core texts.” Pikachu did what the Zentraedi and Invid couldn’t do: they destroyed the SDF-1.

Legion of Super-Heroes

Legion of Superheroes was comic set in the distant future that combined superheroes with space opera, with a visual aesthetic that can best be described as “Star Trek: the Motion Picture, if it was set in a disco.” 

I’ve heard wrestling described as “a soap opera for men.” If that’s the case, then Legion of Super-Heroes was a soap opera for nerds. The book is about attractive 20-somethings who seem to hook up all the time. As a result, it had a large female fanbase, which, I cannot stress enough, is incredibly unusual for this era in comics history. And if you have female fans, you get a lot of shipping and slashfic, and lots of speculation over which of the boy characters in the series is gay. The fanon answer is Element Lad, because he wore magenta-pink and never had a girlfriend. (Can’t argue with bulletproof logic like that.) In other words, it was a 1970s-80s fandom that felt much more “modern” than the more right-brained, bloodless, often anal scifi fandoms that existed around the same time, where letters pages were just nitpicking science errors by model train and elevator enthusiasts.

Legion Headquarters seemed to be a rabbit fuck den built around a supercomputer and Danger Room. Cosmic Boy dressed like Tim Curry in Rocky Horror. There’s one member, Duo Damsel, who can turn into two people, a power that, in the words of Legion writer Jim Shooter, was “useful for weird sex…and not much else.”

LSH was popular because the fans were insanely horny. This is, beyond the shadow of a doubt, the thirstiest fandom of all time.  You might think I’m overselling this, but I really think that’s an under-analyzed part of how some kinds of fiction build a devoted fanbase.  

For example, a big reason for the success of Mass Effect is that everyone has a favorite girl or boy, and you have the option to romance them. Likewise, everyone who was a fan of Legion remembers having a crush. Sardonic Ultra Boy for some reason was a favorite among gay male nerds (aka the Robert Conrad Effect). Tall, blonde, amazonian telepath Saturn Girl, maybe the first female team leader in comics history, is for the guys with backbone who prefer Veronica over Betty. Shrinking Violet was a cute Audrey Hepburn type. And don’t forget Shadow Lass, who was a blue skinned alien babe with pointed ears and is heavily implied to have an accent (she was Aayla Secura before Aayla Secura was Aayla Secura). Light Lass was commonly believed to be “coded lesbian” because of a short haircut and her relationships with men didn’t work out. The point is, it’s one thing to read about the adventures of a superteam, and it implies a totally different level of mental and emotional involvement to read the adventures of your imaginary girlfriend/boyfriend.  

Now, I should point out that of all the fandoms I’ve examined here, LSH was maybe the smallest. Legion was never a top seller, but it was a favorite of the most devoted of fans who kept it alive all through the seventies and eighties with an energy and intensity disproportionate to their actual numbers. My gosh, were LSH fans devoted! Interlac and Legion Outpost were two Legion fanzines that are some of the most famous fanzines in comics history.

If nerd culture fandoms were drugs, Star Wars would be alcohol, Doctor Who would be weed, but Legion of Super-Heroes would be injecting heroin directly into your eyeballs. Maybe it is because the Legionnaires were nerdy, too: they played Dungeons and Dragons in their off time (an escape, no doubt, from their humdrum, mundane lives as galaxy-rescuing superheroes). There were sometimes call outs to Monty Python. Basically, the whole thing had a feel like the dorkily earnest skits or filk-singing at a con. Legion felt like it’s own fan series, guest starring Patton Oswalt and Felicia Day.

It helped that the boundary between fandom and professional was incredibly porous. For instance, pro-artist Dave Cockrum did covers for Legion fanzines. Former Legion APA members Todd and Mary Biernbaum got a chance to actually write Legion, where, with the gusto of former slashfic writers given the keys to canon, their major contribution was a subplot that explicitly made Element Lad gay. Mike Grell, a professional artist who got paid to work on the series, did vaguely porno-ish fan art. Again, it’s hard to tell where the pros started and the fandom ended; the inmates were running the asylum.

Mostly, Legion earned this devotion because it could reward it in a way no other comic could. Because Legion was not a wide market comic but was bought by a core audience, after a point, there were no self-contained one-and-done Legion stories. In fact, there weren’t even really arcs as we know it, which is why Legion always has problems getting reprinted in trade form. Legion was plotted like a daytime soap opera: there were always five different stories going on in every issue, and a comic involved cutting between them. Sure, like daytime soap operas, there’s never a beginning, just endless middles, so it was totally impossible for a newbie to jump on board…but soap operas know what they are doing: long term storytelling rewards a long term reader.

This brings me to today, where Legion is no longer being published by DC. There is no discussion about a movie or TV revival. This is amazing. Comics are a world where the tiniest nerd groups get pandered to: Micronauts, Weirdworld, Seeker 3000, and Rom have had revival series, for pete’s sake. It’s incredible there’s no discussion of a film or TV treatment, either; friggin Cyborg from New Teen Titans is getting a solo movie. 

Why did Legion stop being such a big deal? Where did the fandom that supported it dissolve to? One word: X-Men. Legion was incredibly ahead of its time. In the 60s and 70s, there were barely any “fan” comics, since superhero comics were like animation is today: mostly aimed at kids, with a minority of discerning adult/teen fans, and it was success among kids, not fans, that led to something being a top seller (hence, “fan favorites” in the 1970s, as surprising as it is to us today, often did not get a lot of work, like Don MacGregor or Barry Smith). But as newsstands started to push comics out, the fan audience started to get bigger and more important…everyone else started to catch up to the things that made Legion unique: most comics started to have attractive people who paired up into couples and/or love triangles, and featured extremely byzantine long term storytelling. If Legion of Super-Heroes is going to be remembered for anything, it’s for being the smaller scale “John the Baptist” to the phenomenon of X-Men, the ultimate “fan” comic.

The other thing that killed Legion, apart from Marvel’s Merry Mutants, that is, was the r-word: reboots. A reboot only works for some properties, but not others. You reboot something when you want to find something for a mass audience to respond to, like with Zorro, Batman, or Godzilla.

Legion, though, was not a comic for everybody, it was a fanboy/girl comic beloved by a niche who read it for continuing stories and minutiae (and to jack off, and in some cases, jill off). Rebooting a comic like that is a bad idea. You do not reboot something where the main way you engage with the property, the greatest strength, is the accumulated lore and history. Rebooting a property like that means losing the reason people like it, and unless it’s something with a wide audience, you only lose fans and won’t get anything in return for it. So for something like Legion (small fandom obsessed with long form plots and details, but unlike Trek, no name recognition) a reboot is the ultimate Achilles heel that shatters everything, a self-destruct button they kept hitting over and over and over until there was nothing at all left.

E. E. Smith’s Lensman Novels

The Lensman series is like Gil Evans’s jazz: it’s your grandparents’ favorite thing that you’ve never heard of. 

I mean, have you ever wondered exactly what scifi fandom talked about before the rise of the major core texts and cultural objects (Star Trek, Asimov, etc)? Well, it was this. Lensmen was the subject of fanfiction mailed in manilla envelopes during the 30s, 40s, and 50s (some of which are still around). If you’re from Boston, you might recognize that the two biggest and oldest scifi cons there going back to the 1940s, Boskone (Boscon, get it?) and Arisia, are references to the Lensman series. This series not only created space opera as we know it, but contributed two of the biggest visuals in scifi, the interstellar police drawn from different alien species, and space marines in power armor.

My favorite sign of how big this series was and how fans responded to it, was a great wedding held at Worldcon that duplicated Kimball Kinnison and Clarissa’s wedding on Klovia. This is adorable:

The basic story is pure good vs. evil: galactic civilization faces a crime and piracy wave of unprecedented proportions from technologically advanced pirates (the memory of Prohibition, where criminals had superior firearms and faster cars than the cops, was strong by the mid-1930s). A young officer, Kimball Kinnison (who speaks in a Stan Lee esque style of dialogue known as “mid-century American wiseass”), graduates the academy and is granted a Lens, an object from an ancient mystery civilization, who’s true purpose is unknown.

Lensman Kinnison discovers that the “crime wave” is actually a hostile invasion and assault by a totally alien culture that is based on hierarchy, intolerant of failure, and at the highest level, is ruled by horrifying nightmare things that breathe freezing poison gases. Along the way, he picks up allies, like van Buskirk, a variant human space marine from a heavy gravity planet who can do a standing jump of 20 feet in full space armor, Worsel, a telepathic dragon warrior scientist with the technical improvisation skills of MacGyver (who reads like the most sadistically minmaxed munchkinized RPG character of all time), and Nandreck, a psychologist from a Pluto-like planet of selfish cowards.

The scale of the conflict starts small, just skirmishes with pirates, but explodes to near apocalyptic dimensions. This series has space battles with millions of starships emerging from hyperspacial tubes to attack the ultragood Arisians, homeworld of the first intelligent race in the cosmos. By the end of the fourth book, there are mind battles where the reflected and parried mental beams leave hundreds of innocent bystanders dead. In the meantime we get evil Black Lensmen, the Hell Hole in Space, and superweapons like the Negasphere and the Sunbeam, where an entire solar system was turned into a vacuum tube.

It’s not hard to understand why Lensmen faded in importance. While the alien Lensmen had lively psychologies, Lensman Kimball Kinnison was not an interesting person, and that’s a problem when scifi starts to become more about characterization. The Lensman books, with their love of police and their sexism (it is an explicit plot point that the Lens is incompatible with female minds – in canon there are no female Lensmen) led to it being judged harshly by the New Wave writers of the 1960s, who viewed it all as borderline fascist military-scifi establishment hokum, and the reputation of the series never recovered from the spirit of that decade.

Prisoner of Zenda

Prisoner of Zenda is a novel about a roguish con-man who visits a postage-stamp, charmingly picturesque Central European kingdom with storybook castles, where he finds he looks just like the local king and is forced to pose as him in palace intrigues. It’s a swashbuckling story about mistaken identity, swordfighting, and intrigue, one part swashbuckler and one part dark political thriller.

The popularity of this book predates organized fandom as we know it, so I wonder if “fandom” is even the right word to use. All the same, it inspired fanatical dedication from readers. There was such a popular hunger for it that an entire library could be filled with nothing but rip-offs of Prisoner of Zenda. If you have a favorite writer who was active between 1900-1950, I guarantee he probably wrote at least one Prisoner of Zenda rip-off (which is nearly always the least-read book in his oeuvre). The only novel in the 20th Century that inspired more imitators was Sherlock Holmes. Robert Heinlein and Edmond “Planet Smasher” Hamilton wrote scifi updates of Prisoner of Zenda. Doctor Who lifted the plot wholesale for the Tom Baker era episode, “Androids of Tara,” Futurama did this exact plot too, and even Marvel Comics has its own copy of Ruritania, Doctor Doom’s Kingdom of Latveria. Even as late as the 1980s, every kids’ cartoon did a “Prisoner of Zenda” episode, one of the stock plots alongside “everyone gets hit by a shrink ray” and the Christmas Carol episode.

Prisoner of Zenda imitators were so numerous, that they even have their own Library of Congress sub-heading, of “Ruritanian Romance.” 

One major reason that Prisoner of Zenda fandom died off is that, between World War I and World War II, there was a brutal lack of sympathy for anything that seemed slightly German, and it seems the incredibly Central European Prisoner of Zenda was a casualty of this. Far and away, the largest immigrant group in the United States through the entire 19th Century were Germans, who were more numerous than Irish or Italians. There were entire cities in the Midwest that were two-thirds German-born or German-descent, who met in Biergartens and German community centers that now no longer exist.

Kurt Vonnegut wrote a lot about how the German-American world he grew up in vanished because of the prejudice of the World Wars, and that disappearance was so extensive that it was retroactive, like someone did a DC comic-style continuity reboot where it all never happened: Germans, despite being the largest immigrant group in US history, are left out of the immigrant story. The “Little Bohemias” and “Little Berlins” that were once everywhere no longer exist. There is no holiday dedicated to people of German ancestry in the US, the way the Irish have St. Patrick’s Day or Italians have Columbus Day (there is Von Steuben’s Day, dedicated to a general who fought with George Washington, but it’s a strictly Midwest thing most people outside the region have never heard of, like Sweetest Day). If you’re reading this and you’re an academic, and you’re not sure what to do your dissertation on, try writing about the German-American immigrant world of the 19th and 20th Centuries, because it’s a criminally under-researched topic.

A. Merritt

Pop quiz: who was the most popular and influential fantasy author during the 1930s and 40s? 

If you answered Tolkien or Robert E. Howard, you’re wrong - it was actually Abraham Merritt. He was the most popular writer of his age of the kind of fiction he did, and he’s since been mostly forgotten. Gary Gygax, creator of Dungeons and Dragons, has said that A. Merritt was his favorite fantasy and horror novelist.

Why did A. Merritt and his fandom go away, when at one point, he was THE fantasy author? Well, obviously one big answer was the 1960s counterculture, which brought different writers like Tolkien and Lovecraft to the forefront (by modern standards Lovecraft isn’t a fantasy author, but he was produced by the same early century genre-fluid effluvium that produced Merritt and the rest). The other answer is that A. Merritt was so totally a product of the weird occult speculation of his age that it’s hard to even imagine him clicking with audiences in other eras. His work is based on fringe weirdness that appealed to early 20th Century spiritualism and made sense at the time: reincarnation, racial memory, an obsession with lost race stories and the stone age, and weirdness like the 1920s belief that the Polar Arctic is the ancestral home of the Caucasian race. In other words, it’s impossible to explain Merritt without a ton of sentences that start with “well, people in the 1920s thought that…” That’s not a good sign when it comes to his universality. 

That’s it for now. Do you have any suggestions on a dead fandom, or do you keep one of these “dead” fandoms alive in your heart?

"death by coffee" and other search queries | steve/tony

rated T, no warnings, ~2.8k

In a single, typical day, thousands of search queries filter through JARVIS’s security system, half of which, the AI is certain, is due to a certain Mister Barton who carries a compulsion to Google nearly anything and everything. It is rare that JARVIS dwells on any of them, unless they have been specifically flagged before. There are almost always more pressing issues to attend to.

It is on a Thursday afternoon that JARVIS catches one in particular: how to ask someone on a date. JARVIS immediately drops his current queue of actions (because Mister Barton certainly knows how to microwave popcorn after approximately two million loaded search results) and follows the query to…

Mister Rogers’s tablet? JARVIS detects him sitting the lounge. Ah.

JARVIS has this search query flagged after Sir, once very drunk with a contact list of very single Hollywood stars, performed the search and decided that the best way to ask a question was loudly and boldly, for all to see. (In other words, attempting to replace the letters STARK with HEY ANGELINA SEVEN PM TOMORROW? It was, by all of JARVIS’s classifications, a horrid idea, not only because the tower did not have the circumference to fit so many letters, but also because Sir nearly succumbed to the eighty-nine-point-three percent chance of plummeting to his death.)

Luckily, he finds Mister Rogers not inebriated. He detects a thirty-point-one percent increase in the man’s heart rate and one of his nervous tics, tapping his foot against the floor, but Mister Rogers otherwise appears to be in a clear state of mind. In fact, he is staring very intently at the screen.

Keep reading

anonymous asked:

Can you help me? I'm craving first time msr fic. Scully's at her mom's house and Mulder stops by unexpectedly after Maggie goes to bed and M/S end up together. Maggie gets up to check on Scully because she heard a weird noise and walks in on them...

First time fic, slightly NSFW.


It’s hardly a surprise that she went to her mother’s, but he’s still edgy that she hasn’t called him. Well, hasn’t called him in the last six hours. She left a message earlier, but he was out for a run, pounding Padgett’s face with each step on the wet bitumen. The puddles sprayed out and he saw blood spatter. Each dull thud of his runners on the surface was a fresh blow to the chin, the jaw, the solar plexus. The run was one of the most satisfying he could remember and he relished the sharp drags of breath in and out as he ran a glass of water and checked his messages.

           Now, it’s been more than enough time for him to see her lying across his floor, blood wicking out of a non-existent hole in her chest where her precious heart had been removed. He steps into the shower and lets the horrific scene evaporate with the steam around him. Like it never happened.

He’s missed another call by the time he’s dried and dressed and this time he simply heads to the car and drives.

The house is in darkness and he calls Scully from across the road. Her voice is cautious, coy even, but she opens the door. She’s fresh from a bath and robed in pale blue cotton. Her hair is damp and curls under her ears. I’m Dana Scully, I’ve been assigned to work with you. She was that young and life was that propitious once. And he feels it again as she ducks her chin into her neck and lets him pass.

           “I was just making tea, Mulder. Would you like some?”

           He nods and follows her to Maggie’s kitchen which is as homely as he expected. He sees Scully in the flowing fern on the table and the herbs and spices alphabetical in the rack and the portrait perfect bowl of fruit. He sees her in the fine china cups and the ladle holder displaying an image of a perfect dusky pink rose. He sees the family photo on the fridge and he looks back to Scully who offers him a smile somewhere between safe and apologetic.

           “I’m fine, Mulder.”

           “I know that. I just…I wanted to…”

           “To what?” She blows the steam from her tea and it curls under her nose.

           He shrugs. He doesn’t know the right words. For a man whose life has been dominated by the arcane and the mysterious, he’s often stuck for the most mundane utterings.

           “I was terrified,” she says. “I could feel it happening and I couldn’t stop it, I could smell his breath on my face, his fingers pushing in through my skin, I thought I could hear…”

           He sits at the table next to her. “Hear what?”

           “Hear his thoughts.” She looks down at her tea cup then and her shoulders roll forward, like this admission is shameful.

           “And what were they, Scully?”

           She lets out a small sound, like she’s trying to blow the memories away. “It’s not real, Mulder. It was me transferring my fear onto him. And he wasn’t real.”

           The skin on his forehead is warm as he scratches across it. “I thought you were dead. You were so white and..and there was so much blood and you didn’t move. I thought you were dead.”

           She gets up and goes to him. Her arm is warmth and comfort hope around his shoulder. The soft fabric of her sleeve sits across his neck and cools him. He catches a waft of her shampoo as she bends down to kiss his head. He knows she’s alive. He can see her but feeling her and smelling her makes it more real. He twists slightly and catches the underside of her chin as she moves back. She hesitates, exhales, moves down again, turning so her mouth presses to his. She doesn’t stop and he feels like he’s seventeen again, pulling her to sit on his lap, running his hand up and down her back. She isn’t wearing a bra and this fact registers as he parts her lips and moves his tongue into her mouth, tasting peppermint and heat and surprise. Her hand is insistent at the back of his head, fingers feathering through the hair at his nape. She is making soft sounds at the back of her throat and her breathing is heavier through her nostrils; her nose is pressed against his cheek. They break and she pulls back, her face opening up to him, blossoming with embarrassment until she smiles and he sees the redness is passion and lust. She is so beautiful in that moment, as she wavers on the edge of something, something she sees as illicit, breaking the rules. She shakes her head slightly and he can almost hear the warring sides of her internal debate. He wants to break it up, to get the two sides to agree. That this is a good idea; a great idea.

           He runs a thumb and forefinger down her cheek and over her chin, lifting to touch her bottom lip. She closes her eyes and he watches her for a beat. When she opens them again, she is settled. There is determination in her gaze and he kisses her again, pulling her closer, feeling her breasts press against him.

           “I should probably go,” he says, when he lets her go.

           “Probably,” she whispers, and she stands up.

           The loss of her warm weight is a shock and he stays sitting as she puts their tea cups into the sink.

           “Mulder, why did you come here?”

           “I needed to know you were okay.”

           “I’ve been calling you, leaving messages.”

           He stands up. “I needed to see that you were okay.”

           She giggles, out of the blue, and presses her hand to her forehead. “I think you can see that I’m fine.” She shakes her head then, no longer laughing. She straightens her hands by her sides and looks at him. “In fact, I feel more than fine now. You…Mulder, you’re a good kisser. I haven’t…I mean, it’s been a long time since anyone kissed me like that.”

           Hearing her say those things makes his heart race and his throat is suddenly dry. He can feel his cheeks burn. Should he thank her? What does one partner say to another during an admission like this? They’ve shared deep secrets before, they’ve witnessed amazing things, horrific scenes. But this is so deeply personal he’s at a loss for words

           “Mulder, would you like to stay?”

           He blinks.

           “Would you like to stay here? It’s late.”

           “Scully, you don’t have to do this. I’ll be fine.”

           “I know I don’t have to, but I want to. I want you to stay,” and she’s taking his hand and leading him to the bedroom and pulling back the covers. She turns away and takes off her robe. She is wearing a long fitted vest over jersey shorts and it clings, revealing the dark outline of her nipples. She slides into the bed. He unbuckles his belt and slips off his jeans and shirt so he’s just in his boxers. He climbs in beside her and she smiles.

           “I don’t expect anything, Scully.”

           “Then you can’t be disappointed, Mulder.”

           He chuffs out a laugh but she catches it with her lips and he moans into her mouth. Quickly, she is astride him and he feels her heat through the shorts. His hands graze her ass as she rocks forward and back. He moves a hand round and under her vest and her breast is full and warm. She kisses him harder and he squeezes, feeling the peak of her nipple tighten against his palm.

           She pushes back and the weight of her on his groin stirs him more. She lifts her top and throws it aside. It hits the lamp next to the bed and it wobbles on the table. He pulls off his own top and drops it to the floor. She lays flat against him and he strokes her hair. He slips a hand down her shorts and inside her panties. Her bare ass is cool but soft. He sinks his fingers into the flesh and she sighs.

           “Let me take them off,” she says and climbs off him, removing her clothes in one motion. He watches as the sheen on her skin is picked up by the soft glow of the lamp. She faces him and lets his eyes rake over her. She’s embarrassed but she allows it. He removes his boxers and she licks her lip. Unconsciously, perhaps, but a hot pulse of desire sparks.

           “Come here, Scully.”  He pulls her onto him and her foot clips the bedside table and it rattles the lamp again. She giggles but he rolls her over so she’s underneath him. He kisses, bites, sucks, nips and explores.

           Then there’s a knock at the door. They freeze.

           “Dana? Are you okay?”

           “I’m fine, mom.”

           “I heard noises. I thought you might be having a nightmare.”

           Mulder presses his face into the pillow, holding his breath. Scully sits up and pulls the sheet higher. The door handle lowers.

           “I’m fine. I just had a dream.”

           “A bad one?” Maggie asks.

           “No, mom,” she says, looking at Mulder. “A really good one, actually.”

           “If you’re sure you’re okay?”

           She lies back down and strokes the hairs on his chest. “I’m fine, mom. More than fine.”

excuse me | cole sprouse x reader

Originally posted by dylanobrienbaby


written by: rosie

edited by: emma

anonymous said:can you do 55 from the prompt list you just reblogged with cole?😱

prompt: 55- “don’t you dare lay a finger on her”

chapter song: everything is alright / motion city soundtrack

warnings: swearing, anxiety/panic attacks

dating a disney star was easy

secretly dating a disney star was the hard part.

and now that he was back in the lime light it made it so extremely hard to keep your little secret -a secret.

every time you were spotted with him or uploaded a photo that he was in the internet would explode. your phone freezing as a frenzy of fans tag & repost ‘updates’.

it was cute at first, the little comment that appeared on the bottom of our photos.

‘SHIP SHIP SHIP’ - ‘oTfuckingP’ - ‘my actual parents’

until it took to the next level where hate got involved, there was always a cluster of people waiting to leave negative and rude comments.

and then there was the fans that took every little thing we did and began to assume

almost like they didn’t really care about our privacy and wishes to keep our relationship on the down low. 

it started just over the internet until it was brought into the real world, we’d be walking around vancouver with the rest of the cast and fans would rush over and confront us about our relationship status.

we’d just laugh it off and try and avoid the question not wanting to lie but not wanting to out ourselves just yet. 

we lived in our own little bubble and it was nice. the cast and crew knew of course, you were on set all the time visiting him as well as the others. you had grown close to the girls as well as kj (being coles right-hand man and everything).

it was on odd feeling stepping out onto the street and people you didn’t know rushing over urging you for photos and videos to say hello to people that weren’t even there.

you were unsure on what the fuss was about regarding yourself, they’d ask for photos and you assumed they meant you take a photo with the fan and cole but you were wrong.

 they’d pull you into an embrace and shower you with compliments and urge to take a photo that they can later post on the internet in hopes we see and follow them.

 you got your first ever fan account about twenty minutes after cole had uploaded a photo of you that he had taken whilst the two of you were at the beach with his twin brother dylan.

 everyone freaked out and within a day you had 100k more followers than you did when you started that day. it was beyond crazy. especially because you weren’t anything special, just a ordinary mundane girl who had fallen in love.

you’d been that way since junior year of college back when it was easier to keep our relationship in the shadows, but then again we hadn’t been too concerned with keeping it a secret.

it was only when he landed the role of jughead jones on the cw’s riverdale that you and cole had the dreaded conversation of keeping our relationship off social media.

for my own protection of course

some days were worse than others, the paparazzi being the worst possible add on from being famous.

cole was always warily watching whenever you would both step up especially with the paps, always keeping you in his line of vision so if need be he could intervene.

but most of the time it’s just a small cluster so it’s never really gotten entirely out of hand.

but today was different, it was the weekend of SDCC and you’d flown down to san diego with the riverdale gang to be apart of their press team.

giving you a pass to walk around with them and attend interviews and as your ‘job’ you were in charge of taking behind the scenes photographs of the whole cast.

you weren’t getting paid or anything but you were thankful to be seeing cole after not seeing him for a month due to filming starting.

the whole crew were walking together our cars to go back to our hotel to get ready for the after party

you were walking with casey & lili giggling about some meme she had tweeted earlier.

that’s when the paparazzi came flooded in, you felt your chest tighten as the group grew thick.

“paps” lili announces her voice slightly shaken.

everyone moves closer together as we approach the group, our car on the other side of the mob.

they yell out for our attention on approach all pushing eachother trying to get a perfect picture.

security moves forward protecting the crew, not so much yourself as you were only a ‘staff’ member.

the yelling overwhelms you as you try and keep your head down, moving forward as fast as you could.

it all happens so fast, the security push on the group to try and break the up so we could past

majority of the group past no worries besides you and cami

their cameras stuck in your faces as you try and shield your face, holding tightly to camila’s hand as she tries to weave her way forward.

in the chaos you feel your hand slip from hers and the panic starts to kick in

your throat feels dry, your palms growing sweaty.

a static sound grows in your ear as you push through the crowd trying to take deep breathes.



“cole!” you call back spotting him making his way back into the crowd and toward you.

you reach for him when one of the paparazzi grab your arm forcing you to be pulled back.

“let me go!” you yell out trying to tug your hand out of his grasp and he continues to take snap shots of you.


“I SAID GET OFF HER!” you hear cole yell as he grabs your free hand pulling you toward him.

don’t you dare lay a finger on her!” he booms

they paps instantly let go stepping back slightly, still snapping photos.

“you’re fucking jack ass’”

he slips his hand into mine pulling me into the direction of our car.

you hands still trembling

“oh c'mon cole no harm no foul”

you feel his hands tense his whole body go rigid with anger.

you use your free hand to wipe the tears that fall from your face as cole yells at the paps.

“don’t you see that she’s scared?”

the min make another snarky comment and that tips him over the edge.

you press a firm hand on his chest pushing him away.

“they’re not worth it cole” you tell him sternly making him look at you in the eyes.

“you’re right-” he pauses looking back at the group.

“i dont want to see you touch my girlfriend ever again. you got that?”

and with that they back away as cole tucks you under his arms and into your awaiting car.

“im so sorry i should’ve been with you the whole time” he argues almost with himself

planting a kiss on your forehead, the car lurching to life.

“it’s not your fault” you try and comfort him as you sit in silence.

still coming down from the terrifying experience

“oh and i think you might’ve outed us babe” you add, a smile stretching across your face.

“and that’s definitely your fault”

he smirks and places a small kiss on your lips.


tag list:  @sadbreakfastclb @hauntedcherryblossombanana-blog @jugandbettsdetectiveagency @kindfloweroflove @fragilefrances   @mydelightfulcollectiontyphoon @onceuponagladerhead @natalieroseg @sadbreakfastclb @sardonic-jug  @hiimalyssawriter @riverdalemami 

Bts react to you being sick

Yes this is my personal imagine, as i have explained here im starting off with it because ive been sick for fifteen hundread years and i just wanna be taken care off, lollolol,so here’s my debut i guess. i hope it offers you a scope of my writing and how i would portray each member please tell me if you like it, or if you have any comments (IT WOULD MEAM THE WORLD TO ME) and hit me up for more Requestsss im readyyy!! Thanks in advance for all the support, i am literally s excited to wriTE IT ALLLLL

  • Seokjin

Low-key freak out, does a bad job of hiding it, starts  nervously Pickering with you instead. ‘I TOLD you to take a jacket!’ *huffs* Tries not to hover, but cant help it, starts on that chicken broth IMMINENTLY, has to feed you himself. Scary mama bear. Loses his shit whenever one of the guys teases you, ‘Jungkook if you don’t put her down this instant…’*glare* although he himself cant stop the teasing ‘You just want a kiss to make you feel better, don’t you? *smooches you as you laugh and try to push him away* ‘I am sick, you dork!’

Originally posted by bwiseoks

  • Rapmon:

Monie wouldn’t really know what to d He’d pull you against his chest while simultaneously reaching for his phone. “Do you have a fever? are you feeling dizzy?” Instantly cancels all daily activities to be with you. Insist on dragging you along when you refuse to go so you won’t get in the way. Wouldn’t stop trying to self-diagnose you. Unsatisfied when you tell him you just need some rest. “just get in the car babe, for me? i know a really good doctor close by” keeps your hand his at all times.

Originally posted by shin-heerin

  • Suga:

Being the most observant member, he would probably notice that you are tired before you do. Instantly picking-up on your depleted energy levels. "Are you feeling okay baby?” He’d ask while running a palm along your side. You’d sigh, realizing that you are leaning at little heavily on him, you borrow closer into his warmth. That would be all he needed to see before he pulls you to a couch and runs for some Aspirin. He’d keep-up a quiet light discussion to intimately keep tabs on you without making a big deal out of it. Keeps a hand on your hip, a few fingers just under the hem of your shirt to measure your body temp. Takes you to a pharmacy before you even realize where you’re going, insists you at least drape his jacket on your solders when the cold air hits you, cuts off any protests with a kiss. 

Originally posted by nnochu

  • JHope:

Hobi would f r e a k out. He would baby you with everything. Asks Jin hyung what to do, unconsciously gets super quiet and sulky without realizing it, chin on your shoulder. Scandalized once you call him out snaps instantly out of it, jumping up and exploding into a silly dance to make you feel better, not stopping until you crack a smile. *100 watt smile on*  He would calm down at the sound of your laughter, keeping up a light overly dramatic attitude acting like a kid until you’re clutching your sides from laughing. Gets super clingy and touchy, starts off any conversation with ‘Y/N is sick, BTW’. Won’t stop no matter how embarrassed you get. Pats your back as you hide your face in his shirt.‘Laughter is the best medicine after all’. *Nodes *

Originally posted by pastelyoonseok

Originally posted by yourpinkpill

  • Jimin:

Next to Suga, this mochi will be the most aware of it and definitely the most attentive. He won’t be softer than usual because he’s Park Jimin and it doesn’t get softer than that. He’d know how to take good care of you, being the caretaker of Bangtan, it comes naturally to him. I also feel like he’d be the one of the most mature about it, Calmly tucking you to bed and putting the kettle on. He’d keep an overall serene and healing air, that would calm you down like palms on a burn. Already big on PDA this sneaky fluff ball would abuse the situation to the extreme, caging you in his arms and clinging to your waist. He’d let you pat him and spoon him more willingly though, knowing that it makes you feel better. Shamelessly nuzzling up to your chest and neck, leaving sloppy kisses as you giggle ‘Sweetheart, you smell just so good!’ 

Originally posted by nnochu

  • Taehyung:

Tae would be a lost puppy i’m afraid. He is very sensitive though, so i feel like he might mistake your sudden calm for distance. Consequently getting hurt. He’d try to get a read on you discreetly, reaching for stuff around you or stretching to test whether you flinch or pull away. He would keep dancing around it, pulling on your shirtsleeve, gaze unable to meet yours , until he can’t stand it and has to know. ‘What’s wrong?’ he’d ask roughly, voice dropping. once you throw your arms around him though, he would instantly know, despite your muffled "nothing". Melting into your touch, he’d wrap your thighs around, as he heads for the bathroom. ‘Let’s find a thermometer yeah?’ Get ready to be showered with affection once everything settles down tho.

Originally posted by kookieinfirestae

Originally posted by bwipsul

  • Jungkook:

Jungkook would unconsciously pick up on it, offering his physical support more than often but it might take him a bit to realize. Being one to value personal space. He’d chalk up your quietness to something mundane, and try not to get in your way instead. It wouldn’t really hit him, until later in the day when you wont’t finish your food and stay silent through dinner discussions, thinking back to how out of it you seemed the entire day, his worry takes root. He would stew in silent turmoil, stamping out his uneasiness as best he could. He’d think carefully about what to do, opting out of teasing you. He’d gently rub your thigh, knowingly. You’d hold out as long you could before giving in and slumping down against him, with a heavy sigh. He ducks down catching your eyes before you think to look away. Understanding glints in his , and your sigh turns into a groan. You could never keep anything from those doe eyes. He leans in pressing his lips to ur forehead and a twin pair of callused palms descend on your neck and upper arms eliciting a myriad of emotions, not stopping until you’re halfway sat on his lap. He run his fingers at the nape of ur neck “Is your throat acting up again? Im pretty sure we still have some medicine left from last time”. Mmmm is all you can muster in an effort not to moan under his heavenly menstruation. 

Originally posted by jkguks

You’re body’s so loosed up that you barely register the effortless lift, his arms and he’s suddenly skipping from room to room, asking the hyungs and collecting things. ‘Remember what was it called? Something that sounds like a Pokemon?’ Finally at he end of the impromptu treasure hunt, he’d sit you in his lap, back to his chest, as you two sort out the mess his haul. Where did a fully functional hot water bag come from? And why does it feel so good against the back of your neck. After a bit of experimentation. And Jk’s protective instinct you would end up more burrito than human, sort of cocoon filled with all manners comforting gadgets with kookie holding it together. Cuddles Cuddles Cuddlesssssss

Originally posted by taesscripts

lmao sorry i couldnt wit the laundry mountain on the last one

"You appear to be very overdressed, Kyungsoo." (Part 1)

Genre: Smut / Fluff 

Warning: Sexual content 

Pairing: Do Kyungsoo, Kim Jongin 

Word Count:

Kai woke just a few minutes shy of when his alarm was set to go off, so he went ahead and turned it off and got up to start off his day. His morning routine on days off like this was rather mundane. He started with his morning workout, followed by a shower and then breakfast. Thankfully, downtime meant that he could take his time with his routine, which was rare nowadays with how busy their schedules had become. He put on a pair of basketball shorts, grabbed his cell phone and stepped out of his bedroom, running a hand through his messy bedhead. Once he round the corner, he saw Kyungsoo sitting on the couch, which caused him to stop for a moment to try and figure out why Kyungsoo was awake. He gave a simple nod in D.O’s direction and started playing some music from his phone and starting his workout for the day. Fortunately for Kai, he didn’t have set days of certain exercises when they had downtime, so he just did whatever. So, he dropped down onto the floor and started doing some push-ups, keeping his eyes on the floor and glancing up at Kyungsoo occasionally.

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anonymous asked:

Angus MacGyver headcannons of what it’s like to live with Mac as his wife and stuff he likes in the bedroom like kinks/turn ons..? 😏

A/N: I love this man so much so I got super excited when I saw this request and also I apologize for my limited knowledge on the Sexy Times and kinky stuff but he does turn me on like no other when he talks physics so that is definitely addressed

  • He takes much pleasure in doing all those domestic and mundane things together
    • cooking
    • cleaning
    • grocery shopping
    • you adopted a dog (or more) together so you go pet store shopping
    • putting together IKEA furniture
    • you get pissed and give up but he’s a genius so he manages to do most of the work without the instructions
    • shopping for office supplies is a favorite
    • “Mac…”
    • “Yes…?”
    • “Care to explain how ten packs of paperclips got into the cart”
    • and if you have kids shopping for school supplies is just??? the best???
  • You work at Phoenix with Mac but you stay at HQ with Webber when they go out on missions
  • whenever he gets back you can’t keep your hands off each other
  • sometimes you’re so impatient you just do it at work
  • in the bathroom, an empty office, the lab late at night, etc
  • showering together is definitely a thing
  • so steamy the mirror always fogs up
  • don’t picture that shower scene from the first episode just dON’T DO IT
  • and let’s not get started on the scene where he’s handcuffed to the bed
  • you had access to the footage for that and seeing it definitely did not turn you on
  • and you definitely didn’t try it
  • shout out to my fellow nerds who also get turned on when he talks physics
  • the two of you have turned the garage into some sort of mechanics lab where you work on fun projects together
  • when he starts talking physics you just take him right then and there
  • the amount of times you’ve pushed everything of the work table and had to start a project over again is uncountable
  • he might not come off as the most touchy-feely guy but you get him flustered
  • most of the time you’re not even aware of what you’re doing but he watches you constantly and pays attention to all the little details
    • you could just be going over paper work before leaving the office after a long day, your hair in a messy bun, the top button of your blouse undone, and you’re biting your lip as you review the details of your report
    • he’ll walk in seeing you like that and before you register what’s happening he’s got you pushed up against the door, attacking your neck
    • you’ll have just neatly laid out all the papers you need for the next day on your desk and the next second they’re all over the floor, and the rest of the buttons on your blouse are undone
  • now for some more soft stuff
  • movie and show marathons together
  • waking up in each other’s arms
  • sometimes you wake up to the sound of him taking a shower after his morning jog
  • you jump in with him
  • you don’t care how long you’ve been together you steal his shirts all the time
  • especially when he gone on long missions you almost exclusively wear his sweaters or shirts
  • they smell like him and it reassures you that he’ll always come back to you
  • he leaves sticky notes and paperclips all over the place for you to find when he’s gone
  • even if it’s only for a short period of time like when he goes out to get you breakfast
  • years into the marriage your heart still flutters every time you glance at the ring on your finger

Masterlist | Request headcanons or aeshtetics

Trouble - Regina Mills x Reader

Originally posted by lanasfeather

can you write a Regina x Reader fic where the reader is blind and regina develops feelings for the reader? 

A/N: I’m not blind so it probably won’t be completely accurate! Sorry!

Regina had never regretted something so much in her entire life.

For some reason she had let Snow drag her with her to some ‘girls night’ in the bar. Regina sat at the table, Snow was already ordering drink with Cinderella, Ruby was flirting outrageously with a girl on the dance floor, Emma would come soon but she had some stuff to do. The music was too loud, the drinks too sweet, the stares too intrusive.

“Sorry, I almost forgot I had to pick up Y/N!” Emma yelled into her ear and Regina yelped, almost dropping her drink. Emma was holding the arm of a woman in a beautiful purple dress that was modest, but still showed off her assets. Her lip gloss was a little bit smudged, but her hair looked nice. The only thing strange were her closed eyes.

“Regina, meet Y/N!” Emma said. She helped the woman, this Y/N, next to Regina in the booth. “I’ll be back in a minute, just going to tell my mum I’m here and not dead. I swear, she’s so paranoid.”

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I would like to thank @leaalda for making these amazing banners.

This is an effort to spread the word about all fan fiction writers in our little fandom. If you would like to be featured or nominate a writer, please contact me. Please reblog this post if you can and check out some of @aisforr work!

1. First things first, if someone wanted to read your stories where can they find them.

On AO3.

2. Tell us a little about yourself.

I’m in my early 20’s, from the UK. I’m doing a Master’s in business and marketing, which is not exciting. But I do also have an undergraduate degree in product design, which is slightly more interesting when you bring it up in conversation. I really enjoy singing but I’m tone deaf so tend to keep it for long drives, where I can screech to my heart’s content. Pineapples and mushrooms are my most hated foods.

3. What do you never leave home without?

A jacket because I’m always cold and living in the UK the weather is really unpredictable.

4. Are you an early bird or a night owl?

I wake up early, but don’t expect much in the way of me functioning like an actual human until you get to about midday.

5. If you could live in any fictional world which one would you choose and why?

Probably something like Harry Potter.

6. Who is the most famous person you’ve ever met.

I shared an elevator with Les Dennis once. But unless you’re from the UK, you probably don’t know who that is.

7. What are some of your favorite movies/TV?

I really like Marvel films. Arthur Christmas is always my pick to watch in December. Riverdale, Gilmore Girls and Grey’s Anatomy, which I still watch but it was better before Cristina left. Justified and Mr Robot are also great. I’ve seen Friends a million times and I recently watched Brooklyn Nine Nine, which is now in the love for all of eternity pile.

8. What are some of your favorite bands/musicians?

Adele, Paramore, Fall Out Boy are all classics. Also enjoy a bit of Deaf Havana, The Smiths, The Courteeners and Oasis. On the flip side of that, I’m a huge fan of musicals and nothing gets me pumped to do work like Defying Gravity from Wicked.

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  1. jerk or jolt (someone or something) suddenly, typically so as to cause injury.

Chapter Two

It has been over a week since I met Niall. Nine days to be exact. But after day five I gave up. I’ve let the whole notion that he is actually going to call me and that something might happen between us fall to the wayside. I can’t spend time pining over a guy I barely know no matter who he is. Lily on the other hand is a little more perturbed than me. She walks into my apartment nearly every evening, flops down on my couch, and asks one question. It’s the same question every day and today is no different.

“Did he call?”

I give an exasperated groan from beside her. “You know good and well that he hasn’t. You would’ve been the first and only person I told.” I give her a disgruntled look. “Honestly woman, who do you take me for?”

She twirls her hair absent-mindedly around her finger, slipping it into a knot then pulling it free. “Hmm, I was hoping today would be the day. I can’t decide if I think he will or won’t.”

I stand up and walk across the small room to the kitchen. “Well, I booked my ticket on the train to It Aint Gonna Happen. You should probably get yours soon. It’s filling up fast.” I grab a drink from the fridge and hold it up, wiggling it in the air. “You want one too?”

She nods and I grab a second bottle as she continues. “I don’t think you should get on that train too soon. I’ve still got some hope for the boy. He’s a busy pop star we’ve got to give him some leeway.”

I laugh as I sit down, handing her her beer. “Busy little pop star?”

“He is!” She says incredulously. “Have you seen all the shit that those boys do? I mean really…” She pauses mid sentence and shakes her head. “What am I saying? Look at who I’m talking to. You probably already know what they’re doing and have been doing for the past week.”

I huff out. “Excuse me! I do not! Just because I follow them on twitter does not make me a crazy stalker. Millions of people do that.” I throw my hands up emphasizing my point. “Millions!”

Lily bursts out laughing beside me. “Don’t get your panties in a twist! Damn! I know you aren’t stalking them. In fact, I know you so well that I would guess that you haven’t even looked to see if Niall’s tweeted anything lately.”

I sit chewing on my pinky nail a little before I answer with a resigned sigh. “You’re right. I haven’t looked. But mainly because it kinda felt strange. Like knowing that he is out there and doing stuff and that my number is in his phone. Just like hanging out. Waiting to be used. Which probably isn’t going to happen.” I shake my head and put my hands up. “Yeah. I don’t want to think about this.”

Lily looks over at me with an exaggerated head shake. “It’s kinda weird that I’m paying more attention to the guy you made out with than you are.” She sits back, thinking for a moment. “Honestly though, why ask for a number if you’re not going to use it? My gut says he’s going to call you and I’m not usually wrong about these things.”

I roll my eyes. “You are your damn gut. Sometimes I feel like that’s the only thing you use to make decisions. You’re like a man and his penis. Always using the little head instead of the big head.” That one earns a loud laugh from my friend. “Right now all I want is for your gut and my gut to drink and watch terrible television. Can we do that? Please?” I gestured around the small space that is my lounge. “I mean it’s Friday night! Let’s put on our comfy pants and be fat and drunk together.” I turn to her and look serious for a moment. “And it’s not weird. I’ve just spent way too much time already thinking about it. So now I’ve let it go. I got to have my fun and even though I wanted more fun…” I shrug my shoulders and pat her leg. “It’s just not in the cards, sweetie.”

“Alright, alright, I’ll drop it. But just for tonight. Besides, who can say no to a night of terrible television, cuddled up on a couch with their best friend?” She pauses and then adds with a laugh, “Not exactly what I envisioned my fun Friday nights to be when I was younger though.”

“My teenage self certainly wasn’t picturing pints of Ben & Jerry’s and Netflix marathons. Which is just sad really because those things are awesome. But seriously, who wants to go out to club?” I make a disgusted face and stick my tongue out. “Blech. Ugh. No. Dirty men trying to touch you and buy you drinks that you don’t want. Yeah, I’ll pass.” I stand up and grab my empty bottle. Glancing down at Lily’s, I ask,  "You want another one or no?“

"I totally agree. I’m so over the bar scene.” She shakes her head. “ And no, I’m good. Keeping my eye on my girlish figure. Have to look good for the day I get papped standing beside Niall Horan’s new girlfriend.” She says with a cheeky smile aimed at me.

I laugh loudly as I grab myself another beer. I call out from the kitchen. “Let me know when you find her. I’d like to hang out with her too.” While I am searching through my cupboards for a snack, I hear my phone buzz from the couch. I ignore it and keep looking, but call out to Lily instead. “Will you see who that is?”

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Coming up with a Good First Sentence

One of my followers asked me:

Do you have any tips for coming up with a good first sentence for a novel?

So today, I’m answering that question.

Coming up with a Good First Line for a Novel

Method 1
For some people, it’s easiest to just start writing and come back and look through what’s been written to see if any of it would work as a good first sentence. Then the writer rearranges the first few pages to accommodate that. He finds his first sentence by writing.

Method 2
This is similar to Method 1. The writer just starts writing, and it might be a bunch of rambling stuff that’s actually not that important to the story. The writer is just trying find the beginning of the story. When she discovers it, she chops off the starting, where all the rambling is.

Method 3
If you want to start with a good first sentence right off the bat, think of some sort of hook you could begin your opening scene with. The first sentence usually needs to grab the reader somehow. Keep reading for how to do that.

A Great First Sentence

The main elements of a story are character, setting, conflict, and theme. Pick one of those elements and come up with an interesting first sentence to introduce it.

The best first sentences usually promise conflict or intrigue us somehow. A lot of people think they need to start with something life-threatening, like a bomb going off. That can work, but I’ve navigated a fair share of submission piles and can say that can technique also get old, if it’s not told in an interesting way, like this:

The bomb blew apart the grocery store down the street; Grandma Smith listened to the sirens and went back to knitting with a smirk.

The opening sentence doesn’t have to contain life-altering information to be a great one. It just has to be interesting and make us want to learn more. One way to do this is to create interesting contrasts. Here are some examples I came up.

Mom handed me my Birthday present, and my stomach dropped.

We usually associate Birthdays with happy emotions, but the narrator feels sick about this present, so immediately, we want to know why, so we keep reading. It’s an interesting contrast.

I took twice as long as usual to brush my teeth because Dad always preached the importance of looking your best at funeral.

The contrast here is that we start with something mundane and boring and relate it with something life-altering.

You can grab attention by opening with an intriguing description. One of my favorite sentences comes from Dashiell Hammet’s The Maltese Falcon. He opens his story with a character description, and while this sentence wasn’t THE opening sentence, it would have worked brilliantly:

[Samuel Spade] looked rather pleasantly like a blond satan.

Okay, there are several great things happening here at once. First, I would never say that looking like Satan was pleasant, so I’m curious to read more. Second, the main character is being compared to Satan–I’m interested to know more about him. And the qualifier of “blond,” just makes me more curious.

You don’t have to use the contrast technique, but I think it probably works most of the time. Sometimes just a poignant description works. Here is how Eragon by Christopher Paolini opens:

Wind howled through the night, carrying a scent that would change the world.

One more technique: capture your character or narrator’s voice very well. A great voice is one of the first things that grabs editors’ attention. Here is the opening of Harry Potter:

Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four Privet Drive, were proud to say they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.

Can you hear that interesting voice in “proud to say they were perfectly normal, thank you very much”?

Openings to Avoid

I have gone through thousands of unpublished stories, and I can’t tell you how many times I see openings like this:

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These Words are a Lie ~A Joshifer Fanfiction~ Chapter Ten

A/N: Hello my lovely little lemon drops! I hope you all have had a fabulous week so far, and will continue to have a joyous week into the weekend. I’m so happy that I was able to get this chapter to my liking, let me tell you.

This right here is quite a pivotal game changer in the story. Things experience quite a shift after this chapter, and so it’s obviously a highly important one. And earlier…oh my goodness me; I just could not get the emotion to my liking!

But after taking a break, napping, thinking on it, and later coming back to attack it, I was able to achieve exactly the feeling I was looking for. So thank goodness, here it is, in all of its TWAAL glory.

Big thank you to anyone and everyone who sends me encouragement and comments. Your words mean the absolute world to me, and give me the confidence to continue on with this story. I appreciate each and every message, so truly, thank you.

And a thank you to my partner in crime as usual, catching-dandelions, as her reaction spurred me on to continue writing today lol! A special thank you goes to hutchhitched as well, as she offered some much needed advice.

The previous chapter can be found here [x]

All chapters so far can be found here [x]

And without further adooo…

I find myself standing in a dark hallway, the void of shadow nearly overwhelming my surroundings. All except for the rather enticing light which glows softly ahead, beckoning me towards it.

Like a moth drawn to an illuminated object, I find my legs carrying me over to the source, walking without a true idea of where I’m going.

Just when I near the light however, just when I think I’m about to capture it and drink it in with my body, it expands, allowing me to waltz through it entirely. And the moment I do so, a scene suddenly materializes in front of me, one that’s all too familiar and at the same time confusing.

The SBNN Game.

I blink once, puzzlement rolling through me in waves, and throw a glance back over shoulder at the tunnel from which I came.

This is all too strange; I could have sworn I was just here, bathing in the pleasure of watching Josh, and later suffering from the consequences that followed. But perhaps that was just some type of sick nightmare, some type of odd illusion, because the action before me looks more enticing than the last time.

Basketball players run up and down the court almost in a synchronized dance, their bodies glistening with sweat and effort as they continue their competitive fight. Media and press hop from person to person, chattering and allowing the words to flow about mundane topics and questions. Fans buzz around like bees drawn to honey, absolutely honed in on the activity around them.

I stand still for a moment, taking it all in myself. Somewhere in the back of my mind, there’s a red flag going up, telling me that I need to hide and prevent anyone from noticing my identity. But as I swim through the sea of bodies, I push that warning to the deepest crevice of my brain.

Because people are actually treating me like a normal human being.

Even without the slightest bit of cover or concealment, my presence goes virtually unnoticed. Anyone who does manage to catch a glimpse of me simply offers me a smile or a hello, and goes back to their business. It’s almost like my celebrity status is non-existent. And it’s wonderful.

I cannot help but smile myself, a content, happy breath puffing from my nose as I continue to walk around.

While everything about this situation is perfect, and makes me thankful that I decided to attend in the first place, there’s just one little element missing, one absent piece to the beautiful puzzle.

The actual drive behind my motive; Josh.

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