Elemental: Seven Stories for Seven Days

Rating: R to NC-17
Copyright: Buffy the Vampire Slayer characters are the property of Joss Whedon/Mutant Enemy.
Feedback: Please leave feedback on the Elemental thread on the Kitten Board.

So one night in chat a few months ago, there were a large group of us chattering away about all sorts of topics - none of them related to the others, of course. Someone marveled at the number of writers who were in chat at that moment - writers who should have been writing rather than chatting. Before long, we started toying with the idea of a collaborative effort - gathering a group of writers who would band together (after a fashion) to combine their talents and create highly memorable fan fiction. At the very least, it would be fun to try. More people entered the chat room and the conversation moved on to other topics - since terra21 was there, more than likely the new topic turned to Amber Benson and her breasts.

A few nights later, in Yahoo Messenger, watson and I were talking about that conversation. "Wouldn't it be fascinating to actually get a group of the most diverse writers on Pens to collaborate?" "Who would we ask to be involved?" "What form would it take?" "Are we insane?"

A few hours later - as well as a few Diet Cokes for me and a pot of tea for watson - we had a plan. Was it a good plan? Was it a feasible plan? Would people actually be interested? We didn't know. But we were crazy enough to give it a try. After composing an email inviting people to join us, we each took a deep breath, repeatedly convinced each other that we are NOT certifiable, and sent the invitation on its way. At which point, we promptly held our breaths again.

Much to our surprise and utter delight, everyone who received an invitation quickly and enthusiastically agreed to participate in our wacky little project. We were overjoyed...we were ecstatic...we were giddy...we were scared shitless! So, everyone said yes...what do we do now?? Fortunately, watson and I chose our colleagues well. Everyone willingly jumped in with both feet, and, as a group, we got down to business.

So, you may be asking, "Who is involved in this wonderful writing project?" It's an impressive group, let me tell you! In addition to watson, the other writers in the group are JustSkipIt (Debra), tarawhipped (Cam), Artemis (Chris), hermitfish (Cyd), Miss Kittys Ball O' Yarn (Emms), and terra21 (T or terra). We also had two betas - meretricious (Mary) and myself (Carleen). Each of the seven writers wrote a stand-alone story revolving around a central group theme (I'll get to that in a minute). Initially, the idea was that they would write and Mary and I would beta all seven stories. Instead, the group came together and truly collaborated - sharing ideas, giving encouragement, and reading and commenting on all of the stories in the project. In essence, we worked as an online writer's workshop. We would periodically have conference chats in Yahoo Messenger - just to regroup and see how everyone was doing on his/her individual story. What watson and I initially envisioned as a fun little writing project turned into an amazing collaborative experience.

"The theme, Carleen...what about this THEME you've mentioned?"

Ah, yes, the theme. Well, watson and I realized that we had picked out seven authors we wanted to have involved in this project. "So," we thought, "what would be a good central topic for seven rather diverse writers?" Hmmm...seven writers...seven days of the week. But, that wasn't enough. We needed something more interesting. Something that would not only hold the attention of readers, but that would keep the writers interested as well. The research-crazed watson put her skills to use and found references to the Japanese calendar. From there, our idea began to take shape.

The days of the week were initially named after their ruling luminary (astronomical body). This seems to hold true throughout most cultures:

Monday - the Moon
Tuesday - Mars
Wednesday - Mercury
Thursday - Jupiter
Friday - Venus
Saturday - Saturn
Sunday - the Sun

The seven day week as we know it was introduced to Japan around 800 AD and was used mainly for astrological purposes. In 1876, Japan officially adopted the Western calendar. The Japanese names for the days of the week are named after the five Chinese elements - fire, water, wood, metal/gold, earth - and the moon and the sun (yin and yang). Each of these elements corresponds with the above-mentioned luminary bodies:

Monday - Getsuyōbi - Moon
Tuesday - Kayōbi - Mars (Planet of Fire)
Wednesday - Suiyōbi - Mercury (Planet of Water)
Thursday - Mokuyōbi - Jupiter (Planet of Wood)
Friday - Kin'yōbi - Venus (Planet of Metal/Gold)
Saturday - Doyōbi - Saturn (Planet of Earth)
Sunday - Nichiyōbi - Sun

Thus, our theme was born. Each of the writers chose an element/day of the week around which to base his/her story. The only "requirements" for the stories were very simple: 1) The day of the week must be clear; 2) the corresponding element must be the driving force of the story; 3) each story should be rated R or NC -17. Other than that, the writers were given free rein to create any story they chose.

I'll bet you want to know when you'll get to read these stories, huh? Okay, okay...I'll tell you.

Each author will post his/her story on the corresponding day of the week. However, we want to make this last for you. So rather than posting on consecutive days, they will be posted on the corresponding day on consecutive weeks. The posting order is as follows:

Monday, October 3 - "Moon" by Miss Kittys Ball O' Yarn
Tuesday, October 11 - "Fire" by tarawhipped
Wednesday, October 19 - "Water" by JustSkipIt
Thursday, October 27 - "Wood" by hermitfish
Friday, November 4 - "Gold" by Chris Cook (Artemis)
Saturday, November 12 - "Earth" by watson
Sunday, November 20 - "Sun" by terra21

Since the authors live in different time zones (some in different countries), we can't tell you the precise time each fic will be posted. Rest assured, they will be posted on the appropriate days.

Well, Kittens, there it is...the introduction to our writing project. I speak on behalf of all 9 members of the group - particularly the writers - when I say, "I hope you all enjoy our offerings!"


Other works by Elemental authors:
(Note: stories marked with an asterisk (*) are external links, to each story's thread on the Kitten board. Stories not marked with an asterisk are hosted here on Through the Looking-glass, or the companion NC-17 site Mistress/Kitten Fantastico.)

Miss Kittys Ball O Yarn (Emms)

Completed Stories: A Different Life*, Catching Sunflowers in Bloom
Completed Short Stories / Challenges: The Date
Stories in Progress: Art Appreciation, Niobe's Silence*, Simple Matters (Sequel to ADL)*, The Art of Burning Bridges, You Make Me Smile

tarawhipped (Cam)

Completed Stories: Secrets and Spies
Completed Short Stories / Challenges: The Hardest Thing to Do*, Property of Willow Rosenberg*, Someplace REALLY Scary*, Fire Good*, Hunted*, The Play's the Thing*, Eye of the Beholder*, Give Me Your Hand
Stories in Progress: Island of Death, The Legend of Green Eyed Red, The Chronicles of Dopeygayland*

JustSkipIt (Debra)

Completed Stories: Two Days*, Turned*, W/T Season 3 Y'all*, School Days*, Holiday Cheer*, Survivor: Ash Island
Completed Short Stories / Challenges: Shadow and Sunlight, For Kicks*
Stories in Progress: Please: The Series

hermitfish (Cyd)

Completed Stories: Fragments of Perception*
Completed Short Stories / Challenges: Moving Beyond*, Just Once*, Scorching Highways*, A Day in the Life, Reality World Dating & Other Mishaps
Stories in Progress: The Insanity Sessions*, Relinquished Symmetry*, Edge of the World*

Artemis (Chris Cook)

Completed Stories: Hellebore, TARA, Willow & Tara's A Midsummer Night's Dream, Finding Miss Kitty Fantastico
Completed Short Stories / Challenges: Strawberries & Ice Cream, Willow's Head, Lullaby, Smut Bunnies - Mission Improbable, Neutral Ground, Being Together
Stories in Progress: Smut Bunnies!


Completed Stories: Common Areas, The Amazing Kitten Race
Completed Short Stories / Challenges: Coffee Moods*, Educating Dawn*, Indulgences*, French Nature*, Juste Milieu*, Working Lunch*, Blanked*, Home and Away*, All the Time in the World, Song of the White Lady*, Sex and the Clean City*
Stories in Progress: Lamplight


Completed Stories: Prisoner of Choice*, Discover Me*
Completed Short Stories / Challenges: The Commitment*, Lessons Learned*, Switcheroo and Anya Too*, Anniversary Interruptus
Stories in Progress: Cotton Fields

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