Whoosh! Issue 46- July 2000

By Rhana McConnell
Content copyright © 2000 held by author
Edition copyright © 2000 held by Whoosh!
2504 words

Introduction (01-04)
Interview (05-30)
LZ Clotho Works
Xena Uber
Xena General
Xena Alt
Xena Miscellaneous
Star Trek Voyager
Non-Fan Fiction

An Interview with Fan Fiction Bard, LZ Clotho


Or, How Gabrielle Learned a New Meaning for the word Chum.

My Goodness! They are actually selling fan fiction these days!!!

[1] Within the last three years, Xena: Warrior Princess fan fiction has taken on a life of its own, exploding all over the net with stories ranging from short stories and poetry, to novel length epics, catapulting their authors into the limelight of net popularity. One such writer is LZ Clotho.

[2] Well known and respected for her fan fiction with emphasis on the relationship between Xena and Gabrielle, LZ has taken her talents further by giving the readers an ongoing Mel and Janice series, along with an upcoming Uber based in the Civil War era. She is currently working on several Xena and Gabrielle story lines that will put the reader through the emotional wringer, yet, the heart will always triumph over adversity.

[3] Articulate and insightful as the answers to the following questions show, LZ Clotho reveals her motivations and inner thoughts about fan fiction in this brief article, allowing the reader access to one of the great up and coming writers of the 21st century.

[4] LZ kindly took time out of her busy schedule to answer a few questions about her writing.


[5] Interviewer:
When did you start writing?

[6] LZ Clotho:
I've been writing as long as I can remember. But XWP [Xena: Warrior Princess] stuff I started back in 1997.

Xena tries to recall whether this herb causes constipation or cures it.

Xena in 1997.

[7] Interviewer:
Have you had any professional training such as college or classes in writing?

[8] Clotho:
Other than a bachelor's degree in journalism, which probably bolstered my research skills when it comes to my fiction writing, rather than my writing skills, I don't have much in the way of professional training in writing. I took this fiction workshop in short fiction in 1998. It was 13 weeks in short story writing, mainstream fiction. We wrote two stories, but I guess I had pretty much figured out how to write by then because most of the comments were "publish already".

[9] Interviewer:
What genre do you feel most comfortable writing in (fiction, mystery, documentary, fan fiction, etc)?

[10] Clotho:
I don't really know how to answer this other than to say that I prefer fiction to documentary. In a way I hate being constrained to 'just the facts'. Otherwise, my fiction tends to have elements of every genre in it. There's some mystery, some adventure, some fantasy, and some romance.

[11] Interviewer:
What got you started writing fan fiction?

[12] Clotho:
I started writing XWP fan fiction when the idea for "History Cast in Amber" occurred to me. I was spending a week in the hospital with my son who had contracted pneumonia, and I spent night after day after night not sleeping. My husband had brought by a tape of XWP episodes. I had just started regularly taping them regularly. It had GIANT KILLER (27/203), DESTINY (36/212), THE QUEST (237/213), and A NECESSARY EVIL (38/214) on it, I remember. All four are still high among my personal favorites. I spent the first half of the night watching tapes and the second half of the night writing the first 25 or so pages of "History". I also jotted out the short-short story "Horse Thieves" that night too, just to get a feel for the characters. I finished "Home" about two weeks later, but didn't think about putting it on the web for almost four months. Bat Morda helped me make the jump to the web.

Anyone see my contact lens?

One dead giant courtesy of Xena.

[13] Interviewer:
How many fan fiction stories have you written and what is the URL?

[14] Clotho:
I think the count is up to 30 something. I haven't sat and counted recently. My main URL is http://members.xoom.com/LZClotho/index.htm.

[15] Interviewer:
When did you start your own WebPages for stories?

[16] Clotho:
Pretty much right from the beginning. I wasn't on many lists back then and didn't have any other way to share them. I knew about the archive sites, but no one responded when I asked if they wanted to put it up at their site. So, since I have a little HTML knowledge and needed the practice anyway, I threw something together and just started keeping it there, all in one place, easy to maintain (and to update with edited drafts from time to time too; I'm always going back and noticing editing problems).

[17] Interviewer:
Have you had anything published?

[18] Clotho:
Nothing in fiction. But I am a published journalist with several local newspapers.

[19] Interviewer:
Which type of story do you prefer to write, alternative or general fiction?

[20] Clotho:
I started out writing exclusively general fiction, then a story idea occurred to me and it required some sexual content, so I guess I switched over to alternative fiction about a year later, with "New Territory." My story ideas end up dictating the amount of content. Some people really think that "History Cast in Amber" was an alt story, without the sex. I hope all my stories convey the intensity, the devotion, and the commitment I see in the Xena/Gabrielle relationship.

[21] Interviewer:
Who are your writing influences?

[22] Clotho:
Everything I've read, fan fiction, published fiction, in school and since, influences my writing to some degree. Even if it's only "God, I will never do that in a million years in a story of mine!" [*chuckle*] If I had to name names I'd probably say of the 'popular' authors I've most been influenced by are the enjoyable Anne McCaffrey and David Weber. But that's just in the fantasy genre and the written word. I've also been influenced by television, like Designing Women (1986-1993), Remember WENN (1996-1998), and Remington Steele (1982- 1987).

Remmington Steele was another R.J. Stewart production.

[23] Interviewer:
Do you read other fan fiction stories?

[24] Clotho:
I used to read a lot more of it than I do now. It's somewhat the quality, somewhat the content (I am not a fan of the most recent seasons of XWP), and somewhat the time dwindling I have to devote to such things. I have two favorite authors I check up on regularly: Missy Good and Trish Shields.

[25] Interviewer:
Are you a full time writer or part time

[26] Clotho:
To put money on my family table, I work at something else, but if I could, I would be a full-time writer.

[27] Interviewer:
What do you wish your readers to get out of your stories?

[28] Clotho:
I made a promise to myself when I turned 30. I want to be a paid writer of fiction by the time I'm 40. That's actually why I took the writing class. To that end, I've worked hard to make a habit of writing every day. Sometimes absolutely nothing comes out, but I do sit down every morning before the rest of the house is awake and take a stab at it. Then there is the desire to tell a story. As a writer, my ambition is to tell stories that are worth sharing with other people. Writing is a communication form for me. It's how I convey my view of the world's rights, wrongs, challenges, and triumphs. I don't write songs; I don't compose poetry. Instead, I write fictional tales that illustrate my views, and hopefully, speak to the silent heart - mine if no one else's.

[29] Interviewer:
Do you have a similar main theme running through all your stories?

[30] Clotho:
If I had to put it into words: Love is the strength from which we all can have the power to become heroes.

Gabrielle's hair once again gets caught in Xena's breastplate.

Campfires are very popular amongst the fans.

LZ Clotho Works

Xena Uber

"Going Home"
Janice Covington and Melinda Pappas discover intrigue, danger, and romance on their journey back to the States.
September 1999. NC-17. Incomplete.

"Home Front"
Back in the States, life doesn't seem to be getting any less complicated as Janice tries to land a job and Melinda struggles to fit back into the society roles she had left.
January 2000. PG-13

"Home Fires"
...picks up about three weeks after "Home Front" left off.
April 2000. PG-13. Incomplete.

"Beaver Hunt"
The Florida Everglades come alive with the mystery and magic of a millenial old bond. May 1999. PG-13.

Xena General

"History Cast in Amber"
Gabrielle and Xena's journey to stop slavers in Amber reveals a god's plan to reclaim what he lost a decade ago.
July 1997.

"Horse Thieves"
Argo is horsenapped during Xena and Gabrielle's overnight stay in town.
April 1997.

"Golden Moments"
A directionless ex-Warrior Princess tries to find her way after leaving Hercules behind.
December 1997.

"Gabrielle's Choice"
Following "Destiny", Gabrielle struggles through grief to keep her promise to Xena.
December 1997.

"Underworld Adventures"
Companion to "Gabrielle's Choice". Xena's adventures between "Destiny" and "The Quest".
December 1997.

"Compelling Associations"
The god of war discovers his ultimate warrior... in a woman.
January 1998.

"First Words"
Atreus of Amphipolis offers his daughter to his patron god; his wife objects.
January 1998.

"Xena's Choice"
Following "Sacrifice II", Xena's grief pushes her into Ares's service.
July 1998.

"The Magician"
A frivolous bit; Xena and Gabrielle enjoy the tricks of a traveling magician.
January 1999.

"Crystal Storyteller"
Fans of the Warrior Princess's bard lead a god to try once again to win Xena back.
September 1997.

"The Archon"
Xena and Gabrielle are invited to the installation of the first democratically elected leader, the Archon of Athens... Solan.
October 1997.

Xena Alt

"Heart's Courage: If Memory Serves"
Tracking Gabrielle after she's been kidnaped, Xena has an accident and loses her memories of the last ten years. She finds medical aid, and purpose in her old army and an old right hand, Mendices.
May 1999. NC-17.

"New Territory"
Gabrielle and Xena journey toward a new relationship while stopping a warlord.
September 1997. NC-17.

"When We Dance, Who Leads?"
Their new relationship runs into a few snags as Xena and Gabrielle work to stop some horse thieves.
November 1997. NC-17.

"Honeymoon's Over"
On their way back to western Greece, Xena and Gabrielle run across Joxer.
June 1998. PG-13.

"Mantles are Heavy"
With the Amazons, Gabrielle discovers she must choose between the warrior she loves and the people she leads.
July 1998. PG-13.

"Wellspring of Wishes"
Running across a band of new Amazons, Gabrielle and Xena discover new friends and fight an old enemy.
September 1998. PG-13.

"Sittin' in a Tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G"
Gabrielle and Xena attend a wedding.

"Just an Interlude"
A bit of plotless nonsense and fun.

"Old Silk Hat"
A little break on a snow day turns into a battle for Xena, Gabrielle, and Autolycus.

"To Sleep Perchance"
Gabrielle has a little trouble sleeping.

Xena Miscellaneous

"Murder at Besser Creek"
A tale of young love, betrayal, and murder in 1872.
May 1999. PG.

"Solstice in July"
Professor Clotho brings her latest interview subject to the midsummer faculty party on campus.
July 1999. PG.

"English 201 First Day"
Professor Clotho meets her students in English 201.
February - March 1999. PG.

"English 201: The Fire"
Several of Clotho's students become a little hot after some disappointing grades.
February - March 1999. PG.

"Xena and Gabrielle Make Up"
Professor Clotho steps in when two students' tiff seems unresolvable.
March 1999. PG.

Star Trek Voyager

"All I Need"
Janeway's fear following Seven's actions in "Voyager Conspiracy" (6th season) veers the women's relationship down a more... intimate path.
Ratings: J/7; NC17

"Collective Thoughts"
Janeway and Seven reassure one another as the events in "Collective" affect them.
Ratings: J/7; NC17

"A Christmas Story"
Janeway's desire to share her own Christmas traditions leads her to create a very special gift for her crew...with a few Borg-enhancements.
Ratings: J/7; PG

"Sandrine's Revisited"
Janeway works to help Seven forget about her disastrous date in "Someone to Watch Over Me", and discovers why she suggested romance to Seven in the first place.
Ratings: J/7; PG

"A Natural Course"
Janeway and Seven expand their relationship during a picnic in the hydroponics lab.
Ratings: J/7; PG

Janeway introduces Seven to the concept of gestures in intimate relationships.
Ratings: J/7; PG

"Seven's Haven"
The events of "Fair Haven" from Seven's point of view.
Ratings: J/7; PG


"At Home with the Coopers"
A professional couple moves through an evening at home after work.

"Exercise of Faith"
Tired of bingo, Agnes tries her hand at a more active expression of faith...but is she up to the task? February 1998.

"Taken In"
An engaged couple takes on the responsibility of telling the children of friends that their parents will not be coming home.
July 1995.

"Just a Little Dream"
A husband suffers wanderlust yearnings; his wife does not.
August 1991.

"Getting Ready"
A writer gets ready to write.
March 1995.

First person reminiscence of a reunion between estranged lovers.
July 1995.

"Alone on the Phone"
1000 miles between intimate friends can be bridged...or lengthened by a single phone call.
July 1991.

Another version of the events in "Reminisce." July 1995.

A couple in an elevator.
January 1990.

"Lunch Counter"
Regulars at a lunch counter illuminate a town for a visitor.
January 1990.


Rhana McConnell Rhana McConnell
A 37 year old, mild mannered bookkeeper by day, I turn into Rohan the Thunder Chick at net. My also mild mannered husband of nine years, Quin, just shakes his head at my obsession with the show, though he cannot say too much: he collects comics and lives for the Sega Dreamcast. (Living in the desert of Oregon will do that to you.) We are owned by our cat, Freeloader, and are at his beck and call 24 hours a day. Some time in the future, I plan to fulfill my dream of becoming a writer and when I grow up: an astronaut and a doctor and a television director. Hey, no comments from the peanut gallery.
Favorite episode: THE PRICE (44/220), ONE AGAINST AN ARMY (59/313), CRUSADER (76/408)
Favorite line: Xena to Gabrielle: "You don't know how much I love...that." THE PRICE (44/220)
First episode seen: THE TITANS (07/107)
Least favorite episode: The India Arc (Episodes 82/414-84/415), FALLEN ANGEL (91/501), THE BITTER SUITE (58/312)

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