[ The Chick ]

I guess this is all about me. Me Me Me Me.

So yeah. What to say about me? Fuck if i know. I mostly wanted this section to exist, cuz well, so often you go to a slash page, you read the fic, and you're left wondering (either for good or bad reasons) Who the hell is this person?? So I thought I'd talk about myself for a little while. I'm not, you know, gonna tell you major important details of my life, since well, I'm writing gay porn here, and there are reasons god invented the pseudonym. And besides, that's what my journal is for.

In The Beginning....

So I guess I've been in fandom (or well, reading slash) since about late summer/early fall of '99, which directly correlates to my graduating college and moving in with my current roommates. They had both discovered slash senior year of college, but I didn't really get it, and was too busy with other things. Also, i didn't really watch any TV that people wrote fanfic about.

That summer (before I moved up to Boston), I discovered the marvel of bad-but-fun TV that is Highlander. And when I moved up to Boston, I was re-introduced to Due South. And thus I started reading a little slash here and there, but I wasn't really addicted or anything. I still didn't quite get it. I mean, the gay porn aspect was nice and all, but I still thought the concept of fan fiction was a little odd, and I didn't really see the slash in most of the characters being slashed. Plus, (not that I claim to be a great artist or anything, but) there's a lot of bad slash out there. Especially for a slow reader like me, and who was only reading short stuff. Then fall came, and I discovered Sports Night. I liked Sports Night. I thought it was a good, well-written show. And I could kinda see the connection between Dan and Casey, and could kinda understand why people would write SN slash. So I read some. And it was really good. All of it. And then reading the slash made me more interested in the show, til I became obsessed and addicted. And then I in turn became obsessed and addicted to the slash.

I branched out into reading other fandoms, such as Highlander (Duncan/Methos), Due South (Fraser/Kowalski), OZ (Beecher/Keller), and X-Files (Mulder/Krycek). On occasion, I would read The Sentinel, which my roommates both read, but since I've never really liked the show, I've never been able to get into it. I'm one of those people who can't really read slash for something I either don't like or haven't seen. Also, I've come to realise that I'm shallow, and won't read pairings that include people I don't find attractive, or wouldn't want to imagine naked. But I digress. Basically, my point here is that I branched out, but my first, and most important love was always Sports Night.

Wow, am I long-winded...

Sometime in May, 2000, I discovered the entity known as the slash list. Specifically, slashsn. Wow, a whole community of people, all who wanted to talk about the slashiness of Dan and Casey!! Wanting to remain anonymous, I came up with the pseudonym "lizabug", which had absolutely no significance to me, and thus would not even be recognized by roommates. And why, you ask, would I want to hide this from my roommates? Well, at roughly the same time as I discovered slashsn, the wonderful Sports Night episode "La Forza del Destino" aired, which was rife with so much slashy goodness, that I was compelled to write my first story. I'm not entirely sure why I felt the need to hide this, but I did. But like most things with me, I was pretty much incapable of keeping my mouth shut, and told them about 4 days later. heh. go me.

I never really wrote anything else for a long time, but I did discover more lists, including the bunny list, created by the lovely and talented Helen, posted my bunnies and what-not, and was happy to be a non-lurking member of the slash community. I now subscribe to over 15 lists at yahoogroups. Of course, at this point, I've gone "no-mail" on most of them, but we'll get to that later.

The Saga Continues. Perhaps it shouldn't, but it does.

So, sometime around early November 2000, I decided I was sick of having a pseudonym that I had made up out of thin air at about 4am. I wanted something that had significance. Thus Althea Artemisia was born. Now I suppose you're wondering, "Where the heck did that name come from?" If you want the answer to that, go here. It turns out I'm too verbose for my own good.

But anyway. So I changed my name to Althea, and informed all my lists of the change. Life went on. By this time I was mainly reading slash for Sports Night, West Wing, Homicide, and Highlander. Those were the main ones, but i would also read any and all of the following: OZ, Due South, X-Files, Roswell (it was a brief phase, i got over it), Dead Poets Society, Hard Core Logo, L.A. Confidential, occasionally Dawson's Creek, and probably others that I can't think of right now cuz they're not on my bookmark list.

I also wrote a little bit more here and there, most notably Brought To You By The Letter P, of which I'm still quite proud. I gacked a challenge off a Homicide list, and co-opted it for my own nefarious Sports Night purposes. The coolest thing about this was that I really enjoyed writing that story, which is something that doesn't always happen with me. So frequently I get bogged down in word choice and grammar issues (somehow I never learned grammar in school) and plot decisions, that I don't actually enjoy the process of writing. It was nice to enjoy it again. So yeah. That was life as Althea, before--

The Descent Into Hell...

Then, everything started to change, and It's All Helen's Fault!!! Yes, that's right, i blame her entirely for this. :) So one day, I'm minding my own business, surfing the web. I decide to go check out Helen's site, cuz she's not only a great writer, but in general, she makes me laugh. I like reading her random musings and other things she talks about on her website. So yeah. I go there one day, perhaps in December 2000, and on her updates pages she's saying something about being embarrassed, and about how Puppies in a Box has gone live. So I click. How could I have known? Turns out Puppies in a Box is her site dedicate to *NSYNC Slash. So, since I've always liked Helen's writing, I read some of it. And it was good. Only problem was that I didn't really know much about *NSYNC (they'd always amused me-- more than the other boybands-- but that was about it), and I couldn't keep any of the guys straight (heh.), and it made reading the stories a little difficult. So I sorta stopped. Sorta.

Then one day, after things had been a bit slow, Helen posted to the aforementioned bunny list, that it would be okay if people wanted to talk about boys who may or may not be in a band that has an N in its name. So needless to say, the Bunny list sort of exploded, and went from being a mainly Sports Night focused list to, well, being an NSYNC list. Huh. Go figure.

So, of course, with all these people talking about NSYNC all the time, and since I'd already had a cursory interest in them, I started to get a little curious. I downloaded some video clips. Then I got more than a little curious. I started reading about them (all the while working through the Puppies fic.) I watched The Making of The Superbowl Half-Time Show. Because it was about them. Then I became interested. I started scanning the radio, hoping they'd play NSYNC. I downloaded many, many MP3s. I made a "coming out" announcement to the Bunny list, gushing for a while about my "I won't call it an" obsession. I decided I needed to own their cds. I actually walked into a used CD story and purchased the American debut, while telling the clerk that "it was for my niece". I don't have a niece. Somewhere along the line, I became obsessed and even admitted as much. I also got a LiveJournal at some point (i think it was April 2001) and started talking regularly with even more nsync-slashers, and that just further fueled the obsession. Also in April, I was on an airplane and got hit with an nysnc-related bunny. Because I was on a plane, and had nothing better to do, I started writing my first NSYNC story.

I now own many NSYNC cds, have over 3 8-hour tapes worth of NSYNC-related tv programming, several videos/dvds, some um, teeny magazines purchased solely for NSYNC pictures, and about 2 weeks ago (it's mid-June 2001 as I write this), I attended 3, count 'em, 3 NSYNC concerts in one week. Yes, ladies and gentleman, I think it's safe to say that I'm obsessed. And needless to say, my roommates think I'm nuts. They did not follow me down this particular slash-related road. But that's a story for another day. Actually, it's here, but never mind.

Oh, and as I said earlier, I've pretty much gone no-mail on most of my non-nsync lists. I don't really read anything else anymore. It's sad, I know. I still get excited when a new SN story is posted, and I always plan to read them, but they usually never get read. I supposed if I get hit with any more SN bunnies, I still might write them, but I don't know. I do still have that Casey-discovers-Dan's-secret-love-of-NSYNC story I started writing a little while ago. :)


So that's my incredibly long-winded saga of how I got here. Who knew I could babble so much? Well, me. I knew. But we won't get into that. I find it truly amazing that I can blither on for so long on something like this, including tons of unnecessary detail, and yet my stories are always so short. But anyway.

I'm not sure that you wanted know this much about me, but there it is. If you wanna chat or anything, feel free to hit me at althea5000@hailmail.net . I think I actually meant to talk about me as well, not just about my slash history, but oh well. Maybe one day I'll change things a bit or add stuff, but right now, I'm tired.

The Name. Or: Wouldn't it be nice if I spent this much time on my stories?

So the question was, "Where the hell does your name come from?" The answer to that question starts out with the simple statement, My friends and I are really weird. But let me back up a bit.....

I mentioned that my roommates and I all read slash, right? And we all pretty much started out with Highlander slash. (yes, I know I said Sports Night, but when I branched out, it was pretty much immediately into Highlander.) And we've all pretty much read a lot of the same stuff, since when we each find something good, we recommend it to the other two.

Also, I should mention that my two roommies are straight, and I am bi. We are exceedingly good friends, and are a very touchy-feely bunch. But we have no romantic interest in each other. It has not, however, escaped our attention, that if our life was a TV show, there would lots of slash written about us. Also, we like to mess with people's minds. So we will frequently make jokes about trying to seduce each other and what-not. Of course, we enjoy this so much that we even do this when others *aren't* around. We even stole this game from, I believe, one of Monica's stories (i looked it up, it's The Domesticity Series, which is an excellent story, btw) where we'll keep being more and more flirty/seductive until one person starts laughing. Whoever laughs first loses.

Anyway, my roommate P. and I were playing this game late one night, and either she or I made a comment, wondering if I said I was running off to Paris tomorrow, would she offer to sleep with me in an attempt to get me to stay. This was stolen directly from the plot of a Highlander story that, at this point, I couldn't tell you who it belongs to. (okay, so i looked it up, and it turns out this also from The Domesticity Series. heh.) But we'd both read the story, and babbled for a bit, running with it, and puting ourselves into the plot. It was silly, and that was about it. Although we did kinda wonder if our other roommate R, would know what we were referring to, if we mentioned it on email the next morning.

So the next morning, P. posts a message to this little list-serv we have for our friends, saying that I had run off to Paris. She said she figured I was trying to get her into bed, and since she didn't beg me for one more night, that was why I left.

I posted a response, saying this was true, wondering why she wouldn't sleep with me, and signing off with a tagline something to the effect of:

--[name], staring out the window of this cyber cafe, looking with sad eyesat the Jardin du Luxembourg......

Well, my roommate R. is a writer, so when she saw that, she pretty much took it and ran with it. Next thing we knew, we had a 42-page saga, written by alternating authors (the 3 of us plus another friend), that was a complete spoof of Highlander, Highlander fanfic, and ourselves. Basically all of us took on the roles of the various Highlander characters (I was the Methos character, P. was the Duncan character, and R was the Joe Dawson character), plus some of our other friends made appearances as immortals & watchers that didn't have directly correlating characters, plus we had some fictional characters. The whole thing developed quite the elaborate plot, and of course there was the slash plot between P and I (but only with implied sex, of course, cuz that would be too weird.) It's packed with references to all different slash stories, from several fandoms, plus has many of our inside jokes. It was kinda funny how all the characters (who had our names and physical descriptions) were mixture of ourselves and the Highlander character who's role we were filling. We had great fun with the whole thing. It never quite got finished (I believe I'm still languishing in a basement in Belgium), but R. swears that she will write the next bit, which she even has all sorts of plot for, involving 2 more of our friends, and a bronze cast of Napoleon's sister's breast.

So now you're thinking, "Well, this is all very well and good, but what the heck does it have to do with your name?" So remember how I said I played the Methos character? Like Methos, I was also 5,000 years old. Well, at one point, P realised that if I was gonna do the whole thing that Methos did, where most people thought I was just a legend, and currently lived under a different name, then well, I would need another, older-sounding name. Althea was the first name that popped into her head. So she used it, with the stipulation that I could change it if I didn't like it. But I decided I liked it. [I even decided that I finally had a name for my computer.]

Of course, it very quickly occurred to us that Althea was old-sounding in the sense of a few hundred years ago old, not in terms of 5,000 years ago old. So when R. was writing her segment that flashed back to the Gladiatorial Games, she realised she was going to need yet another name for me, and did some research, and thus she found Artemisia.

So that's it. That's the story of my name. Not terribly fascinating, but shows you just how bizarre my friends and I are. And, you know, shows that the name didn't just come out of thin air. But it sorta did. Basically, Althea Artemisia is my 5,000 year old alter-ego. (Thus the "5000" in all my usernames.) I like her. And besides, how many *other* people can say they have a 5,000 year old alter-ego?

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