Yesterday morning, fans all around the world woke up at the crack of dawn to eagerly open their gifts on the most important day of the year. ...Wait, what, I have to go do this "Christmas" thing? Sorry, I'm busy reading this year's new creations for the Yuletide Fanfiction Challenge
Yuletide is a Secret Santa fanfiction exchange that takes place every year around Christmas time.
The basic setup
1) "Nominate" media to be part of the challenge, whether that's a TV commercial
, a popular sci-fi series
, a cult favorite video game
, or even...anthropomorphized planets
2) List the fandoms you'd like to write and receive a story in, and the characters you'd like to write and read about.
Optional step 2.5) Write a letter to Santa
with more details about your likes and dislikes to help your author craft a perfect gift.
3) Get your secret assignment.
Optional step 3.5) Panic.
4) Produce a story of 1000 words or more, in your recipient's requested fandom with your recipient's requested characters, by December 22nd.
5) Wake up Christmas morning and enjoy!
Of course, if the panic overcame you, authors always have the ability to throw in the towel and have their request picked up by one of Yuletide's thousands of dedicated pinch hitters
, who will often claim a request in seconds.
Despite some early stumbles
, this year's challenge has been a huge delight for anyone who loves fandom and fic, and some of the early breakout hits might even be enjoyable for the non-fannish, like:
* Susie Derkins' duel with Death
, which naturally takes the form of Calvinball
* A continuation
of Neil Cicierega's pleasingly creepy Windows 95 tips
* A somewhat meta-referential story
about Galaxy Quest's in-universe fandom (look out for the bonus Galaxy Quest zine!)
* A scathing takedown
of Jonathan Franzen's undying rage (semi-previously
* A story that answers the question of where Christianity fits in
to the world of Neil Gaiman's American Gods
Looking for more? See this year's impressive output of over 2500 stories here
, or sorted by fandom here
And I would be remiss to let perhaps the most famous Yuletide fanfic of all
go unmentioned. (Warning: story linked in article is possibly Not Safe For Anything.)
Further discussion and recommendations can be found at the Yuletide Livejournal community
, and participants also gather in a Yuletide IRC channel
to share the agony and the ecstasy that is Yuletide.
But maybe you didn't like your present this year? Got a rude response from your giftee? Or you're just in it to gawk at the inevitable drama
? There's always yuletide_coal
, an anonymous Livejournal community for the Grinches of Yuletide to commiserate about the coal in their stockings.