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[identity profile] fish-echo.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] fish_recs
For my policy on things such as spoilers, warning, and ratings, please [see my policy post].

Podfic is, at a fundamental level, different from fic. It is out loud, sounds and hearing, instead of sight, characters on a screen or page. Sometimes this difference can be minimized, but sometimes it is accentuated. These recs all, to one extent or another, exploit some aspect of the podfic format in order to better tell the story.

These first two were written specifically to be read aloud by their respective readers. (As far as I am aware, this pair is unique in being written to be read aloud. If you know otherwise, please give links!) So for a change, it is the podfic that is the primary fanwork and the text which is the transformative work.

Podfic: [lion body, head of man, (mp3)] and [audiobook (m4b)]
Read by: [info - personal] toft
Written by: [info - personal] thingswithwings
Etc: SGA, Rodney McKay/John Sheppard, rated 'S' for there's some sex in it, 19:35, 2526 words
Contains: there is also some violence.
Author Summary: not given.
My Notes (podfic): There are scene changes in the story which are not indicated (by pauses or music or whatnot) in the podfic at all. I've decided that this is a neat stylistic choice for this story. I quite like Toft's reading and I think thingswithwings did a good job of writing the story to be read by toft. 17:20--17:29 oh, kills me. I listened to this before reading it and I was able to follow along fine, even though there's a twist going on (I had to listen to it more than once to get all that was happening).
My Notes (story): It's difficult to summarize the story without spoiling it, so I'm not going to. I love the conceit. I end up feeling very sorry for Rodney in this one.

Podfic: [Melusine, (mp3)] and [audiobook (m4b)]
Read by: [info - personal] thingswithwings
Written by: [info - personal] toft
Etc: SGA; Rodney McKay/John Sheppard; R for violence and, um, suggestions of sex; 35:06; ~5K words
Contains: Violence, some gore, spoilers for McKay and Mrs Miller. Angst and soul-searching.
Author Summary: Just your everyday offworld trip, with monsters. (This is sort of an episode tag to McKay and Mrs Miller.)
My Notes (podfic): I pretty much love everything. I love what she does with chimes at the beginning of the story. I love how thingswithwings works with the inter-layered stories and story-telling in here. Thingswithwings has a great way with pacing and phrasing and emotion, and in how she does different voices. I think this is one of those fics that I will not read the fic version, because the podfic version has become primary in my mind.
My Notes (story): Wonderful, interlayered story. And I'm stopping there because if I tried to talk more about the whys and hows I'd end up written an essay, or perhaps just flailing around a lot.

Fics which were written first, but really, were written intended to be read aloud.

Podfic: [l'essential est invisble pour les yeux (mp3)] and [audiobook (m4b)]
Read by: [livejournal.com profile] pennyplainknits
Written by: [livejournal.com profile] formerlydf
Etc: Star Trek Reboot RPF, Chris Pine/Zach Quinto, rated teen, 30:09, 5100 words, (the actors played Kirk and Spock respectively)
Contains: ...Unlawful possession of physical manifestations of metaphorical constructs. Mentions of Disney.
Author Summary: Zach can handle someone metaphorically leaving their heart in his hands; he's never had to contemplate what he would do if someone left their metaphorical heart literally in his hands.
My notes (podfic): I read this and thought 'I would love to hear this as a podfic and I bet someone is recording it right now because it's so suited' and I was right on all counts. I'd love to talk about pennyplainknits' reading but I've listened to it a few times, and by now I don't really hear it, I just see it in my mind. That is a compliment to the reader but makes it difficult for the reccer to discuss it. So I shan't. Ha!
My notes (story): A lovely magical realism story. I think that even people who are generally bothered by RPF would be fine with this story, as it is different enough from reality to not seem like real people. The fic is in English.

This trilogy was read by two different readers:

Podfic: [Beltane, (mp3)] and [audiobook (m4b)]
Read by: [livejournal.com profile] winkingstar
Written by: [shalott] ([livejournal.com profile] astolat//[info - personal] astolat)
Etc: Merlin, gen, rated G, 6:44, 1200 words
Contains: Story telling within the story.
Author Summary: There is a story that is not told in Ealdor anymore, not for many years now, a story about Beltane Eve.
My Notes (podfic): This story is well-suited to being read aloud as the vast majority of it is a story told out loud. As has probably become obvious by now, I enjoy listening to winkingstar's readings and I quite like her readings of fairy tale-style stories. She does well here with having the pacing of the part of this which is itself an oral story.
My Notes (story): An excellent origin story for Merlin and nice use of touches of mythology.

Podfic: [Coming of Age, (mp3)] and [audiobook (m4b)] and [m4a]
Read by: FayJay ([livejournal.com profile] pandarus)
Written by: [shalott] ([livejournal.com profile] astolat//[info - personal] astolat)
Etc: Merlin (BBC), as gen as the show (which is to say, you could read it as Merlin/Arthur Pendragon if you liked or not if you didn't), rated teen, 43:00, 6400 words
Author Summary: "I have called you to give you a warning," the dragon said. "A red moon rises over Camelot this night. The Wild Hunt will ride."
My Notes (podfic): This fic is a standard format fic, if you will, (in contrast with it's prequel, which was ~90% oral folk tale), which gives a very different tone to the story and that is reflected in FayJay's reading. I like the music chosen for this story, it dovetails well (but it is a personal peeve for podfic to open with music rather than announcing the title/author/etc and then doing music). She does different voices for different characters. I quite like her querulous old woman voice (first heard ~9:40). At ~12:40, good use of just a bit of creepy music to accent the action.
My Notes (story): I think I would have preferred to have this section also be a told-story, but it does fine as it is. This is the next logical story to follow 'Beltane' and has the appropriate folk tale elements.
Sequel: [That Shall Achieve the Sword, (mp3)] and [m4b] and [m4a], read by FayJay ([livejournal.com profile] pandarus) (time: 37:12, as gen as the show, averted character death.)

This next fic has been read by two different readers. I quite enjoy it when two different people have read the same story-- it allows for you to hear two different reader interpretations. So now there's the author's words, my own interpretation of the written story, two podfic reader's versions, and my thoughts on both readings, which all gives rise to a lot to think about.

Title: Promises Writ in Indelible Ink
Written by: [sardonicsmiley]
Etc: SGA, gen, PG-ish, 8100 words
Contains: Spoilers for the last two episodes [entry dated Dec. 17th, 2007 09:47 am], language, pre-McShep. Starts directly after Miller's Crossing ends (seriously, they're on their way to eat), continues through the end of the season, and a little bit past that.
Author Summary: You don't know what you've got 'till it's gone. Sometimes you get the chance to get it back.
My Notes (story): Sweet story where when Rodney returns to Atlantis after being gone and the city and her denizens show Rodney how much they missed him. One of the things I like about this is that it's more than just the team and the city-- you also have Miko and Radek and others who very clearly missed Rodney. The individual ways everyone shows that they missed (and thus, that they value) Rodney is nice. There's a cameo by inept-with-feelings-John which is always fun. Rodney takes most of the story to figure out what's going on, so he's being all perplexed as no one is reacting the way he expects.

Podfic, version 1: [time: 40:47, (mp3)]
Read by: [livejournal.com profile] terialk
My Notes: Terialk reads the entire thing quickly (but also completely understandably), which works within this story because it is a tight 3rd POV on Rodney, although it probably wouldn't otherwise. She's good at getting across Rodney's confusion at the situation.

Podfic, version 2: [time: 52:38, (mp3)] and [audiobook (m4b)]
Read by: naonh3_cl2
My Notes: Naonh reads this at a much more slow, measured pace. She emphasises different aspects of the words/story. This Rodney is a bit more sarcastic than terialk's.

I haven't listened to these next podfics yet (they went up only a few days ago and I simply haven't had time), but here's another pair of podfics of the same story. I'm cheating a bit by including these on this rec set as I haven't listened to them, but I feel no guilt as (a) they fit in the category well, (b) both readers are quite good at reading podfic so I'm sure they're lovely, and (c) I'm in charge and I'm never that good at following rules anyways.

Title: [A Beautiful Lifetime Event]
Written by: [shalott] ([livejournal.com profile] astolat//[info - personal] astolat)
Etc: SGA, Rodney McKay/John Sheppard, brief explicit sex at the end, 30K words
Contains: kidfic
Author Summary: Life is what happens when you're busy making other plans.
My Notes (story): Sweet story where Rodney and John accidentally have a kid (via the magic of messing around with Ancient machinery that they don't know). I like the story a lot even though there's some pacing issues.
One podfic version: [time: 2:56:53, (mp3)] and [audiobook (m4b)], read by [livejournal.com profile] anatsuno//[info - personal] anatsuno
Another podfic version: [time: 2:54:03, (mp3)] and [audiobook (m4b)], read by [livejournal.com profile] general_jinjur//[info - personal] general_jinjur
Missing scene (AU to the story): [A missing scene for Shalott's 'a beautiful lifetime event', (mp3)] (12:27, explicit sex), read by [livejournal.com profile] general_jinjur//[info - personal] general_jinjur, written by [resonant] ([info - personal] resonant//[livejournal.com profile] resonant8)

This one isn't a podfic, but I think it would do quite well. (I know I'm cheating a bit by including this, but as I said previously, it's my meme and I can cheat if I want to.)

Story: Mount Badon [on AOOO]//[on LJ]//[on DW]
Written by: Betty//[livejournal.com profile] brown_betty//[info - personal] brownbetty
Etc: Merlin (BBC), as gen as the show, rated teen for battle descriptions, 3400 words
Contains: Whacked the canon with the history stick, injuring both in the process. Also, I [the author] suffer from the bizarre conviction that sheep are intrinsically hilarious.
Author Summary: "Yes, I do it to aggravate you," says Arthur.
DVD Commentary: by the author: [on DW]//[on LJ]
My Notes: This story blends mythology/history with the BBC canon to make something that feels different than much of the Merlin (BBC) fanfic (It's set in some future when Arthur is king). I love the original characters. I also like watching their reactions to Arthur and Merlin (who have matured and grown but are still recognisable to the BBC versions).

ETA: Now in podfic form! [mp3] and [audiobook], 23:45. As part of [the 2009 Fandom Free For All], [livejournal.com profile] jadesfire2808 recorded this for me! *GLEEE* I love [livejournal.com profile] jadesfire2808's readings in general, so I was thrilled when she picked this off of my wish list. And happily, the actual reading did not disappoint. The story opens with a short passage in Latin, which I had forgotten about, so it was quite a pleasant surprise to hear it in her reading. Listening to it reminded me of two things: (1) I do love listening to Latin, and (2) my Latin is shamefully rusty. I love how, when I listen to her reading, I felt the uncertainty and danger of the war more and also found the humour of the second half more funny. I chuckled out loud and flat-out grinned several times. She does very well with showing the distinct personalities of each of the characters. A++ will listen to again :)

Question! What stories do you think are just begging to be made into podfics? Elaborate as much as you'd like :)

As always, if you've found any errors or additional info, let me know. (This is normally where I would ask for podfic versions, but ha! these are all podfics! Wheee!)

[Originally posted] at [info - personal] fish-echo on 28 August 2009

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