Thank you so much for writing for me! Yuletide is one of my favourite times of year and I always look forward to seeing what Yuletide Santa has left me under the tree. This year, my requests are all thematically grouped, so I hope that if one doesn't suit the others are more accessible! Rest assured that I will adore whatever you come up with, because there is so little fiction for ANY of the things I requested that the mere existence of more fic will make me incredibly happy.
My tastes have been pretty consistent over the years, and you can see my prior year Yuletide author letters tagged under 'yuletide'. Here are some quick points on what I like and what squicks me, both general and fandom specific.
1) I love the relationships between strong, interesting people (or weak, interesting ones!), especially if it wouldn't be something that would occur to them at first glance, whether canonical or not. My requests this year are mostly focused on antagonists, but what I tend to find interesting about them is how they can be moved beyond that point of friction - or how that friction can coexist even as the understanding between them grows. I love gen just as much as slash!
2) I love character studies and long, thoughful looks at a character's motivation, which is probably reflected in what characters I find interesting. I like characters that aren't generally liked in the world they are in, or the people around them; ones that suffer and survive and show strength of character. I love hurt/comfort as a trope, especially if the one offering comfort is reluctant, or not on the best of terms with those they are trying to comfort. I love best friends sticking together. I love a united front in the face of adversity.
3) I don't really hate any characters in the fandoms I have requested, so please no character bashing. This is especially the case in opting for slash couples - I may love characters A and B and slash them, but I wouldn't want to see character bashing of A's wife or husband as part of that.
4) My squicks are fairly standard. Sex-based squicks are graphic sexual violence, underage, watersports, scat, humiliation, extreme or ritualised BDSM (including where fics are set in BDSM universes). I'm also not a fan of alpha/beta/omega, amnesia fics, baby fics, AUs (e.g. high school settings or similar), meta tropes or otherwise breaking the fourth wall.
5) Things I love in fiction in general: long, glorious world-building; characters that have UST and spark off each other; hurt/comfort, first times in shippy fic, great feeling in a world that doesn't permit it, character studies (especially of female characters), clever dialogue, vivid storytelling and a sense of peril. I love them, and therefore want them to suffer, of course.
Formula 1 (Classic) RPF
Ayrton Senna, Alain Prost,
My feelings, let me show you them! I am absolutely heartbroken that, just as Alain and Ayrton were finally moving beyond their history as antagonists, Imola happened. Who knows what their relationship could have become if Ayrton hadn't died so tragically young? And of course, I love the aggression just as much as the sweetness in Ayrton, and how he can be sometimes so careless of others and at other times so solicitous. He was aggressive to the point of arguably causing accidents, but was the first on the scene if one of the drivers was hurt. So... I wonder what would have happened if, in one of their earlier clashes, an accident DID happen, and Alain WAS injured. (Nothing permanent, but serious.) How would Ayrton have approached that? What would have happened to their relationship? How would things have turned out?
Alternatively, I wonder what happened during those months where Alain was retired - and therefore no longer a threat - and Ayrton would phone him constantly and beg him to come back. How did that even work? What did Alain think? What did Ayrton think? Did they ever discuss it in person?
It's all so tragic, so if you can give them a crumb of comfort, it would make me incredibly happy.
Formula 1 (Modern) RPF
Kimi Raikkonen, Fernando Alonso
Ack, these two! Let me hug them to my bosom. I have some weird feelings about their relationship. I like how they're both top dogs, and how they respect each other as drivers. And I like how Fernando DOESN'T like Sebastian Vettel, who is not only Kimi's close friend, but also likely his replacement at Ferrari. I like them fighting, I like them working as a team, I like Fernando being weirdly possessive over Kimi re: Sebastian, I like Kimi kicking arse in 2015 and Fernando being able to approach him as a friend rather than a rival... I'd come up with deep thinky thoughts here, but mostly I like them sparking off each other. Kimi's friendship with Sebastian is a bonus, as is Fernando's friendship with Mark - having Sebastian and Mark helping them get together (because they are stubborn idiots) would make me squeak like a small child with inhuman glee.
Niki Lauda, James Hunt
Hmmm, so the film versions of these two are very different from the RPF versions, so I'm focusing on the film relationship here - i.e. they didn't know each other, they weren't friends, they most certainly didn't live together. They were antagonists. And then we have the Nurburgring, and James's feelings on that. And Niki's recovery. And that recovery is NOT easy, it's not quick. And although in real life James didn't punch a reporter for insulting Niki, I like the film version where he does - where he feels possessive and protective over this person whom he doesn't think of as a friend but he's not an enemy, either. Again, I like the complicated relationship between these two, and I'd love to read something where James decides to mend some bridges, somehow, and has to fight Niki tooth and nail for every inch of friendship.