Yuletide signups are open!

One last post before I leave on my trip. (Okay, that might be a lie. I have no idea if something else will prod me into posting in the next twenty hours or so. But this is the last one I intend to make.)

Yuletide signups are open. If you already know and love Yuletide, go forth and have fun!

If you’re wondering what the heck I’m talking about, keep reading.


Yuletide is a fanfiction gift exchange for “rare fandoms” — meaning not your Harry Potters and so on, but things that don’t normally get a lot of fannish activity. This means stories for obscure ’80s movies, book series you loved when you were nine (whenever that was for you), indie comics, songs, paintings, historical personages, bizarre TV commercials, Appalachian murder ballads, London museums, and Plato’s Dialogues, along with many, many other things.

Participating means that you sign up with requests and offers: things you would like somebody else to write for you, and things you’d be willing to write for somebody else. Offers get matched to requests, everybody gets an assignment, and you go off to write a complete story of at least one thousand words, featuring the characters your recipient asked for. Come Christmas morning (ish, depending on your time zone), you get to read the story your assigned writer wrote for you. And much fun is had.

I wasn’t making up that list, either: this is the list of fandoms and characters nominated for Yuletide this year. You can find all the things I described in there somewhere. If there are things on the list that make you go “squee!” or “oh god I would love a story about X,” consider signing up. This post tells you how, plus there’s a FAQ here, and I’m happy to answer any questions. Or, if the idea sort of appeals but you don’t know what you would ask for/you’d prefer not to have the pressure of a deadline, you can participate unofficially, either by writing “treats” (extra stories for the heck of it), or by pinch-hitting — stepping in when a participant has to default on their assignment. If you’re interested in either of those, let me know, and I’ll give you the rundown on how it works.

It really is a lot of fun. Yuletide is full of people going “oh my god, I’m not the only person who loves this!” (In fact, that’s kind of the point.) This is my fourth year participating, and it’s become sort of my annual treat to myself, writing some stuff just because it’s entertaining to do so, not because it’s my job. Plus it’s a lot more communal and social than writing generally is. If that sounds like your cup of tea, give it a shot!

This entry was also posted at http://swan-tower.dreamwidth.org/599817.html. Comment here or there.

8 Responses to “Yuletide signups are open!”

  1. chomiji

    Yuletide is an amazing experience! Now I just need to narrow down my choices … so many lovely, shiny fandoms!

  2. yhlee

    Eee, signed up!

  3. samedietc

    I am cautiously interested–but I have no idea what I’d ask for. Maybe I should try unofficial participation?

    • Marie Brennan

      If you aren’t sure what to ask for, then yeah, unofficial is probably a good way to dip your toes in the water.

      There’s a post here where participants can put up their letters, i.e. the posts where they talk about what they’d like to receive. There’s a bunch now, and I guarantee there will be more before we’re done! You can browse through it for fandoms you know and enjoy, and see if any of the prompts catch your fancy. If one does (or more than one), you can write it and upload it to AO3 as part of the Yuletide collection, with the requester tagged as the recipient, and lo! They have a treat.

      You can also sign up on the pinch-hit list — I don’t have the details for that on hand, but I can dig them up. That one is more commitment, since if you get assigned a pinch hit, you have to write the story by the deadline. But it can also be a lot of fun, since basically you’re swooping in to Save Yuletide for somebody. <g> There’s a lot of competition to get pinch-hits, since they’re first come, first served, which adds to the excitement. And afterward, pinch hitters are invited (but not required) to make some requests of their own, so that people who want to can write them treats as a thank-you.

      Either of those sound good to you?

      • samedietc

        Thanks for the info–and for bringing this whole yuletide fiction exchange to my attention. It looks like a lot of fun. I went ahead and got an AO3 account and signed up for the pinch-hitter Yahoo group.

        Two other questions: about how many pieces do you write for this? (I’m probably just going to write one or two.) And do other people write out what they want from their fiction requests in the way you did in your “Dear Yuletide Writer” post? I browsed through the link you put up to the letters and it doesn’t seem like many people talk about what they want beyond fandom/character.

        • Marie Brennan

          Answer #1 — is the “you” here me specifically, or people generally? Me, I wrote four stories my first year, six my second, and then twelve my third, because I had lots of free time and wanted to prevent myself from trying to increase the number of stories I wrote every year by writing a ridiculous number I would never top. ๐Ÿ˜› People generally, on the other hand: your average Yuletider writes one, maybe two. You can write as many or as few as you like. Just remember that if you get assigned a pinch hit, you do have to finish, so think before you volunteer for it! (But think fast. There’s sort of a competition on the pinch hit list to see who can snag ’em the fastest.)

          As for the letters, they vary wildly. Some people write one sentence. Others write small novels. If you keep browsing, you’ll find some wordier ones, I promise. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Anonymous

    Oh you are definitely our daughter!! We always pack way too much into our trips and always vow to build in downtime for the nest trip – never happens!

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