This week’s author may be relatively new to the X-Files fandom but has honed her writing talents over more than 15 years. Meet ScullylovesQueequeg!
With 39 works on A03 alone, she’s explored Mulder and Scully’s earlier days as well as how we find them in the revival era. We all know saying “I love you” isn’t exactly Mulder and Scully’s forte - unless drugs and hospitals are involved - but there are other ways to say it. ScullylovesQueequeg explores the sentiment in her series “100 Ways to Say I Love You.” If you’re looking for something a little more “adult” check out “Confession” which looks at the aftermath of the infamous almost-kiss in the hallway, and how Diana Fowley and Marita Covarrubias play a part. And if you love cancer-arc angst just as much as I do, “Creeping Distress” will definitely hit the spot.
We talked with ScullylovesQueequeg about The X-Files, writing, and inspiration.
How long have you been a Phile?
About 4 years, give or take some. It’s actually pretty complicated to explain, because it’s always been a part of my childhood, and was a dull hum against the other things that occurred in my life. It’s somewhat of a recurring theme.
What was your first episode?
I remember I caught the tail end of “731” once when I was far too young to be watching it, but the first episode I can remember watching and being aware of what it was about was “Scary Monsters.” I also had seen “Per Manum,” and I remember being freaked out for quite a while, too.
How long have you been writing fic?
The first fic I ever put on the internet is still up, and it’s not XF related… I date it to be about 15 years old, however, I have been writing for longer—so I would say just about 18 years? Even so, I’ve only been writing for XF for the last 4/5 years—so about as long as I’ve been into the show.
What inspired you to start writing?
For the XF, it was probably right after I finished the series and both movies. It was actually right around Mother’s Day, and I saw people writing pieces as other characters, so I decided to write something for Scully, since it’s such an interesting situation.
Who is your favorite XF character to write?
Definitely Mulder, without a doubt. It’s funny, because I don’t relate to him at all physically, and even personality wise, but I find it easier to get into his head, and to understand his reasoning for the things he does.
Are there any XF characters you dislike or find too difficult to write?
This is going to probably shock some, but I actually find it hard to write for Scully. As a character, I like her. She is complex, she is strong and well written… I just can’t really wrap my head around her as a person, and I don’t always find myself agreeing with her reasoning. But I do write about her, just about as often as I write about Mulder, so I’d like to think that I’m getting better at writing her.
Is there a story you’re most proud of or that’s a favorite?
I would have to say, “Can I Have this Dance?” because it’s one of the longest I’ve written, and one of the few stories that when I go back and read, I’m not embarrassed by. It’s a story in which Scully convinces Mulder to join her as a plus one to her cousin’s wedding. They realize how they feel about each other, and end up having some fun. I wrote it before the revival came out, and I was particularly proud of how I had written Charlie Scully, however, I was disappointed to know that Charlie is different on the show. That was a let down.
Where can people find your work, and what’s the best way to send feedback?
I write stuff on Archive of Our Own, my pen name there is “ScullylovesQueequeg.” I also have a wordpress, which I use to host some of my X-Files stuff, in addition to any non X-Files writing and original works.
I also contribute articles and posts now and then for The X-Cast, on topics relating to the episodes themselves. The best way to leave feedback would be to comment on those places I’ve listed above, or bugging me on Twitter. I like getting feedback, but I don’t respond to rudeness.
Do you take fic prompts from fans?
Yes, I do! It doesn’t take much to get me going—even just spitballing jokes can be enough to get me to write something. However, I do ask that if you do submit a request for me to write, that you be patient with me because:
A: It’ll probably be anywhere from 1 day to a 5 months for me to get it done.
B: I turn down ideas that I don’t feel I can pull off or that I don’t feel comfortable with.
C: I don’t do a lot of fluff, so when I do, it’s not my usual.
Have you written your own original characters outside of fandom?
Yes, I have, actually. I roleplay as a hobby, and so I’m always coming up with characters to use. I have three that I really adore:
Leslie Sloane – the protagonist in a novel I’ve been working on
Avery Wellingford – an antiquarian who has a phobia of worms, which prevents him from reading any of the books in his collection.
Lory Sullivan – a ballet dancer who is constantly yearning her mother’s approval.
Do you have a favorite author? (fanfic or published!)
I would have to say I’ve always been a fan of Michael Crichton’s work. I’m also very fond of Chuck Palahniuk, Brian Jacques, and H.P. Lovecraft. I don’t really do as much reading as I used to, but those are some I can constantly come back to. As for fanfiction writers, I couldn’t name any—I honestly have not gotten around to reading that many. I know it seems terrible, because there are plenty of talented writers out there, but I personally have not found any that have struck me in a way as to call them a favorite. I don’t think that should be something that really even matters.
Anything you’d like to share about your writing process?
This is probably going to blow some minds, but my best time to write is usually during my commute to and from work. I do most of my writing at this time, on my phone. You read that right—I write almost all of my stories on my phone. I usually use my computer for other things. I spent a year without a working computer, and so I had to use my phone for everything, and in the end, I got very used to typing on it.
Is there any advice you’d give to aspiring writers?
Yeah: don’t give up. I don’t really have any real tips to give in regards to the process, but only moral encouragement. No matter how bad you think you are, as long as you’re enjoying what you’ve done… that’s all that matters. Things are going to be painfully slow. It might take a year before people notice your work. Don’t do it for the likes/reblogs/stars… do it for yourself. Self-promote your work. No one can know about your work if they don’t know it exists.
Anything else you’d like to share that I missed?
Nothing really, but thank you so much for this opportunity! It’s my sincerest hope that even if only one person ends up as a new reader of mine, that they enjoy what they read—it makes me very happy to know that my stories touch on things and feelings that sometimes we tend to forget, or ignore.
Thank you so much to ScullylovesQueequeg for talking with us!