(1) Lack of immediate feedback doesn't mean your fic sucked. It may mean you wrote a pairing or rating that doesn't happen to appeal to the hordes. It may mean your scenario or universe isn't one that lends itself to a single sit-down skim-through and quick review. It may mean your usual peeps are going out of their minds with OMG HANUKKAH STARTS TOMORROW or other seasonal madness (when not procrastinating on coping with said madness by peeking very randomly at fics) and are holding off on several shiploads of reading until later this winter (especially the long'uns). It almost definitely means there are a couple of lurkers (or more!) who haven't quite worked up the nerve to tell you how much they enjoyed your story, because they're afeared of sounding stupid or shallow (note to the lurkers: be brave! Feedback is a wonderful thing! It encourages more fic!), or they're flummoxed by the interface, or because the !@#@# server went down just as they finally worked up the nerve to click the magic make-the-author-happy button (or won't accept their security code, or some other nonsense. The SnuSa site is working like a dream, but this has happened to me on at other archives from time to time). Or they're just indolent.
ETA: Or they got distracted by a dog throwing up on the carpet just as they were about to tell you how brilliant you are. Etc., dammit. Dinnae fash yersels over comment counts and other manifestations of popularity or lack thereof, because therein lies madness, including the odd syndrome of folks not realizing that manifestations of neediness and fragility = reader repellent. (Perhaps I simply have the heart of a black mountain troll (to steal Lee's phrase), but Author Notes along the lines of "Be kind to me" tend to trigger exactly the opposite impulse in me -- i.e., it wakes up an insane urge to kick puppies.)
(I know I've held forth on this subject before, but there are a lot of new writers/readers in this year's fests, so it seemed worth saying this again.)
(2) I will bet a tall skim cappucino (no sugar or syrups for me, thanks) that Not Quite What the Doctor Ordered
(RL/SS, AU, rated R, 33000 words) is by either McKay or someone whose style very closely resembles hers. I am stating this publicly even though I was dead wrong on most of my guesses in last year's fest, because the suggestion that McKay might
have written it will lure some of you into reading it now instead of saving it for later. *eg* The characterizations remind me of some of her other Snapes and Reguluses -- and speaking of Regulus, he's a delight in this. And so's the secondary pairing and the casting and the very
detailed plotting. (I like
AUs - when they're done well, the cleverness warms my toes and the characeterisations often make me think harder about canon. Good stuff.)
(3) A new handful of imps arrived in the mail over the weekend. The BYM liked Ivanushka and Long Night Moon best, and wasn't so crazy about Aunt Caroline's Joy Mojo (a frimp) or Sagittarius. He likes scents to be on the subtle side.
Lab descriptions: LONG NIGHT MOON
The nights are at their longest, the sky is at its darkest. The air is still with reflective silence.
A bouquet of night-blooming flowers, petals dusted with frost. Cereus, moonflower accord, night phlox, honeysuckle, silver thyme, white mint, and blue musk.
Mutable Fire: the essence of striving.
Sage, clove, dandelion, balm of gilead, fig, and chamomile.
Soft, velvety fur and warm musk, brushed by forest woods and dusted by dry leaves.
My initial impressions: I wasn't wowed by any of them, but none of them were "OMG no
Ivanuskha (decant) I have to sniff hard to smell at all (not unlike Ozymandias). Kind of powdery.
Long Night Moon (decant) - sweet but not cloying. Has a bit of a bite to it - maybe a winter version of Gemini?
Sagittarius (decant) - kind of sunny and mild. I think it's the chamomile. (Doesn't quite fit the name, associations with arrows notwithstanding.)
Sol (decant from a different circle, received earlier) - heavier, more aggressive scent.
Cleopatra's Veil (sample from a different manufacturer) - interesting and pleasant. Reminds me of Chanel No. 5, but I'm not sure if they've actually anything in common. It just tickled that tendril of my sense-memory.
Aunt Caroline's Joy Mojo (lab imp) - very flamboyant. Very orange, which I personally like. (Probably wouldn't smell all that good on me, but I'll keep it for the "staying awake until stupid hours trying to catch up" nights.)
And on that note, I'm off to make cranberry-orange relish, run a gadzillion errands, and then return to hardcore comma mining. *g* *hugs all y'all*