It’s the night before Thanksgiving here in the States (the rest of the planet probably regards this as one of the most annoying days of the year, probably along with the fourth of July, but oh well), and even though I think Thanksgiving is an incredibly problematic holiday for many reasons, I also love the principle behind it. It’s about togetherness and gratitude, and sometimes those things can feel like they’re in short supply. Especially from me. I haven’t been as communicative this year—my LJ and this blog in particular sometimes look like an abandoned wasteland—as I have been in the past, and part of that has been my health-related problems (it turns out I am sensitive to MSG and prone to migraines because of it, so I’m in the middle of a lifestyle adjustment) and part of it has just been general surliness. For all of those of you who stuck around through the days of Grumpy Frea, I have nothing but gratitude.
But I’m grateful for a lot of other things, too, so I thought I’d take a moment to list things.
I’m grateful for every review I receive (well, maybe not the angry ones, if I’m being honest). I’m grateful that somebody took time out of his/her day to leave me a small token that they had read my story, even if it was just “great job! Thanks!”
I'm grateful to the beta readers, to the cheerleaders, to anybody who encourages fanfiction writers and fanartists rather than tearing them down.
I’m grateful for every person who’s ever reached out to me, even if it’s just a simple, “How are you?”
I’m grateful for quistie64, who is such a joy to have in my life. I’m grateful that she finished her massive fic because it means I no longer
I’m grateful for Michael and Lindsay, who collectively have to be the nicest, kindest people on the planet. I’m a little glad the greater part of the Midwest separates these two because if they lived closer together, the entire earth might be sucked into a wormhole of niceness.
I’m grateful to my friend Ayefah. I’m sure she’s probably scratching her head in curiosity about why that is, BUT I HAVE MY REASONS (and am going to be super-mean and not share them here). (okay, fine, it’s because she made me realize the joy of all capitals, plus she always brings me spam whenever I get online and she’s a great person to talk to all the time. And she’s just neat. So there)
I’m grateful for Cat, who appears to me to live life with such unabashed and colorful joy. Another person who always makes me smile, and I envy her ability to live out loud like that. Also, I really should watch Friends sometime.
I’m grateful for the wonderful Wepdiggy, who I finally got the chance to meet this year and an entire room of Avengers fangirls didn’t scare him off, which was amazing. I’m grateful that he challenges my worldviews and brings his sense of humor into my life.
I’m grateful for Chris Bosman, and his excellent taste in music, his masterful use of hyperbole, and how crazy my Twitter timeline can sometimes get with him around. He keeps it fascinating.
I’m grateful for Supriya and Jessica and Jordan, who I met because of Downton Abbey and thankfully we outlasted the show together. These women are remarkable and sometimes flooding their DMs on Twitter with messages about Oliver Queen’s abs is the highlight of my week.
I’m grateful for Kris for bringing a lot of snark and Yvonne love to my life, and Kate for bringing a lot of snark and some truly amazing fanfiction. I’m not even saying that because she referenced Fates in her latest chapter (which you should go read)!
I’m grateful for the Joels: British Science Joel and Science Joel. From them, I’m guaranteed to learn something (or make BSJ facepalm by not remembering the actors for Artoo and Threepio), and I always relish that opportunity.
I’m grateful for SharpAsAMarble for the cheesiest of puns. I mean that literally.
I’m grateful for Grace for her talent and encouragement and the fact that she’s always there for a good fannish squeeing session.
I’m grateful for Don for always sending me such great questions on Tumblr and really, for reblogging every single piece of fanfiction I write. It always makes me smile.
I’m grateful for Crumby for being a troll.
…oh, I should probably say more about Crumby, huh. Oh, fine. She’s a troll, and I love it. And yes, getting to meet her in Prague this year is one of the highlights of my life. I don’t think it gets cooler than walking around Prague with a woman in a Ron Swanson T-shirt. I’m grateful I got the chance to meet Crumby and that she’s still willing to talk to me after that. And soon I shall watch Friday Night Lights, I promise!
I’m grateful to Dennis for being one of the nicest people on the planet. Even when we don’t see eye to eye, I’m amazed at the depths of kindness and the willingness to understand things that may not be familiar to him. Plus, I just admire his dedication to writing. Rock on, Dennis!
I’m grateful to Peter O for being such a positive light in my life, and for sharing his fantastic tunes with me. Dude has a song for everything, and I dig that.
I’m grateful to Karen for…I have no idea, I just adore her. She’s so fantastic and quirky and she’s got kickass Sarah Walker hair and the ability to love something in all capital letters. If I’m chatting with her online, I’m usually on the floor laughing. Granted, sometimes that’s because I’m messing with her and trying to get her to finish Curtain Call for me.
I’m grateful to Lucky. We only met in person in the airport in Chicago on our trip (which was fun to explain to random strangers), but it was like I’d known her for decades. I’ve never met anybody more accident prone but cheerful about it, and I find that utterly inspiring. Getting to spend two weeks gallivanting across Europe together was a fantastic experience I wouldn’t trade for anything. If you ever need sarcasm and positivity in the same sentence, Lucky’s your gal.
And finally, I’m grateful to Max. I don’t feel like giving a reason because that’s being too nice and I try not to do that because then he starts thinking he can get fresh with me and—oh, fiiiiine, if I must. Guys, Max is one of the greatest people I know. He’s one of my best friends. Meeting him a couple of years ago has helped me out in so many, incalculable ways. He was there for all of Fates and he’s been there for every big story since, always cheerleading me on and willing to read the crappiest of prose that I send his way (and trust me, I have sent some real stinkers his way; my taste for puns means you are NEVER SAFE). I’m so grateful every day that he considers me a friend and I get to share that honor.
But you want to know what I’m most grateful for, out of everything?
Mashed Potatoes. AW YISS. I’m gonna go home now and get me some.
PS – there are a bunch of ebook downloads for you if you’re traveling this weekend and need something to read. All of ersk4’s Chuck stories are now up, and I’ve compiled my Badass Altitude Universe, and my Hyperfocal Distance Avengers Journalism AU onto the page, as well. Happy reading!