This week’s author isn’t new to the fandom, or even new to fic writing. But she is new to sharing her writing with an audience and I can say we’re so lucky she decided to take the plunge! Meet sunflowerseedsandscience. If you haven’t checked out her wonderful “Au Cafe Pequod,” find a comfy spot to settle in and get reading. Set in France during World War II, this gorgeous AU captures the spirit of Mulder and Scully and shows how timeless these characters truly are. The story even inspired this trailer by the super-talented mulderswaterbed.
The “Early On” series is another favorite that explores the beginning of Mulder and Scully’s partnership and how different things could have been had Scully’s boyfriend Ethan Minette not been cut from the Pilot episode. If you need something to make you smile in the Season 10 era, “Sasquatch Domesticus” is just the fluff you’re looking for.
We talked with sunflowerseedsandscience about writing, inspiration, and The X-Files.
How long have you been a Phile?
I started watching during the first season when it originally aired, when I was in middle school. I was the only fan in the house, though, and we only had one TV at first, so I didn’t always get to watch. In high school we lived overseas in places where the show didn’t air, so for a few years, I only knew what was going on by reading the transcripts that the kind people at insidethex.co.uk uploaded every week. There were plenty of episodes I’d never actually seen, only read, until the show became available on Netflix.
What was your first episode?
“Squeeze!” I was hooked right off the bat.
How long have you been writing fic?
I started making up stories in my head right away, but I didn’t start writing anything down until high school. I had notebooks full of it, plus more on my laptop. Part of me wishes I still had access to all of it, and part of me is relieved, because I know most of it was ridiculous. I only just started sharing my writing publicly in June, and it’s still a nerve-wracking experience every time I hit “post!”
What inspired you to start writing?
I’m gonna go ahead and blame Chris Carter for that. I got so damn impatient waiting for M&S to take the plunge, and they just had so much potential. I couldn’t stop once I got started.
Who is your favorite XF character to write?
I love, love, love to try to get into Scully’s head. She’s so complex that she can be written a plethora of different ways, depending on the situation. Her personality is very, very different from my own, and I have a special love for trying to write characters that react to the world differently than I do.
Are there any XF characters you dislike or find too difficult to write?
I have some difficulty with CSM. He just seems like pure evil, so when I try to write him, I feel like he comes across as completely flat, not nuanced at all. Possibly I just need to work on getting a better feel for him.
Is there a story you’re most proud of or that’s a favorite?
I honestly couldn’t be happier with how “Au Cafe Pequod” turned out. I lived that story while I was writing it; I was completely useless in my day-to-day life because it was all I could think about. It’s still on my mind to enough of an extent that I’m having a hard time focusing on other things- which is why I’m still writing follow-up vignettes. I’m not ready to leave that world yet!
Where can people find your work, and what’s the best way to send feedback?
Do you take fic prompts from fans?
I do take them, but I might not get to them right away, and sometimes I can’t really think of anything to do the prompt justice, so I might leave it and try to come back to it later. Or, in the case of one that’s been sitting neglected for months, it might have to do with an episode I’m not as familiar with, and I need to find the time to go back and re-watch it.
Have you written your own original characters outside of fandom?
I’ve got a super-depressing YA novel about a German girl, daughter of a high-ranking Nazi officer at Dachau, learning the truth about her father and what he did during the war while he’s awaiting trial. I also have a massive fantasy epic I’ve been plugging away at for years, but I have no idea where it’s going and it’s mostly just a mess.
Anything you’d like to share about your writing process?
I do probably 75% of my writing in my head long before I sit down at my computer, usually while I’m driving or while I’m out for a run. Also, I have to be very careful about listening to music while I’m writing, because sometimes, I’ll start writing the scene to fit the music, and I’ll end up in a totally different place than I’d planned.
Do you have a favorite author? (fanfic or published!)
My favorite published authors are David Mitchell, Jennifer Donnelly, Stephen King, and J.K. Rowling- including the mystery novels she’s written as Robert Galbraith. Give them a try if you like MSR and mysteries, because the two main characters have a relationship that reminds me a lot of Mulder and Scully.
First mention, as far as fanfic goes, has to be to all_these_ghosts, because her piece “If I Am Hopeful” is what hooked me on reading fanfic in the first place. I also love somekindofseizure, leiascully, Dashakay, Syntax6, Scullywolf, icedteainthebag, storybycorey, 2momsmakearight, anonstarbuck, crossedbeams, mldrgrl, aloysia_virgata, and geez… just about everyone I follow who writes fic. I feel like every morning when I sign onto tumblr is Christmas morning in Fic Land.
Is there any advice you’d give to aspiring writers?
This fandom is wonderful, supportive, and incredibly kind, so don’t be nervous about sharing your work! And as hard as it is to do, if you can’t focus, don’t be shy about cutting distractions. When I’m serious about working on something, I turn off the wifi on my laptop and put my phone on silent on the other side of the house. Tumblr’s awesome for reading, but it’s certain death for writing!
Thanks so much to sunflowerseedsandscience for talking with us!