You may recall a song Shari Lewis sang with her puppet Lambchop; "This is the Song that Never Ends." I'm reminded of that song - guaranteed to drive adults mad after two minutes - as I return to the 30 day meme. I do have an excuse, because today's entry asks for one's favorite Who-related fanfic. As most folk have found, it's supremely difficult to choose.
I went to my list of favorite stories over at the DW archive A Teaspoon and an Open Mind, figuring I could create a top 10 list. That didn't work. I've favorited 262 stories over there - guys, do you realize how talented y'all are? - and winnowing to 10 was impossible. Instead, I found myself reading at least part of each story again, picking excellence from excellence, then writing something beside the title to remind me of why I loved it. That turned into micro-reviews. It hit me then that I could offer a partial list of recs.
It isn't complete, because it doesn't include those stories I've read on lj that aren't archived on Teaspoon,. It isn't even my complete Teaspoon list. These stories are, I suppose, the Teaspoon offerings that are my personal creme de la creme. They go beyond "favorite" in ways that are impossible to explain, except to say they struck a chord in me that other equally good stories didn't. I also disqualified at least a few stories because I worked on them, lightly or heavily, as an editor/beta, and I didn't want anything on the list in which I was involved.
So, here is:
Day 16 - Your favorite Who-Related Fanfic
World Enough and Time by ClocketPatch A story of Romana that's worth its weight in gold.
Wipe The Sleep Out Of My Eyes by Bagheera Read this for the heartbreak and triumph of a minor character, Dodo Chaplet.
What Ho, You Dalek Chaps! by JJPOR Best Doctor-Jeeves crossover, EVAR.
What country, friends, is this? by TARDIS_stowaway A favorite Alt!Nine story (and part of one of my favorite Alt!Nine series, "Illyria")
Waiting by Yamx One of the more brilliant, painful, and beautiful timey-wimey pieces I know, courtesy of Nine and Jack.
Valiant by MeiLin Best. YearthatWasn't. Ever. No. Shit. With one of the most compelling fleshing out of a minor character I've ever read.
Upon a Time by AstroGirl One of my favorite TARDIS stories.
Ulysses by Rheanna An absolutely frightening and beautiful AU story of Martha post Family of Blood. This is good writing.
Two to Make Peace by KerrAvonsen Who-Vorkosigan, by one of the best in the DW fanfic business.
Torchwood Goes Watercolor by Canaan You want successful crack crossovers? This one's for you. (T-t-t-th-that's all, folks!)
To Please by Canaan Possibly the hottest, most emotionally intimate, BDSM OT3 I've ever had the pleasure of reading.
To Be the Wolf by Amberwind A favorite of mine in the "Rose is Immortal, and learns to be the Doctor" genre.
Thoughts, Like Threads by Rachel_Beann An elegant Bad Wolf fic. Yes, Bad Wolf. Not Rose, not TARDIS. Bad Wolf.
There was a war (there always is) by ERNest Fanfic poetry is almost always dicey. Not this time.
The Wooded World of Worlds by Lady Yueh Narnia and the Whoniverse shouldn't mix, but it works in this very, very good story.
The Universe in Gallifreyan by northernMagic An exploration of the Gallifreyan language, done flawlessly.
The Turn of the Earth by samfeasor Sarah Jane and Rose, but not this world and not our Sarah Jane. It's marvelous.
The Time I've Spent by Rheanna Rory and the Doctor talk, and it's good. Very, very good.
The Sanctity Of Ordinary Things by Raven This is beautiful; a story, in moments and love, of Nancy, Jamie and Doctor Constantine.
The Ragged Edge by Jonquil Bitterly, mathematically brilliant, and wrapped in a short, sharp package. Nine and Rose.
The Pandora Project by Calapine I hate Doctor/Master fic with a great big hate. Except for this one. Also, it has a marvelous Martha.
The Madwoman of Bannerman Road by MinervaFan This woman writes some of the best Sarah Jane fic out there. This is one of her best.
The Longest Road by izhilzha Rory and Amy and the Doctor. This adventure imprinted in my head, and you should read it, too.
The Last First Doctor by amberite Best "Rose changes. Everything changes." story that's NEVER BEEN FINISHED! ACK! But read what there is, maybe poke the author.
The Lady and the Temp by Altariel Because it's a DW-Vorkosigan crossover. With Donna. And Cordelia. It wins going in.
The Importance of Being Beta-Read by travels_in_time Read it. You'll see whai i liek It.
The Imagination of Gaston Leroux by azriona Azriona's command of voice and perspective is superb, and her plotting is superlative. Paris, phantoms, two Doctors, and more.
The Garden of the Hesperides by Paristani Dense, almost impenetrable, but brilliant for its understanding of names. Also, a second, very different, exception to my Doctor/Master Rule.
The Gap Between Womb and Tomb by kalima Because it's cruel, and intelligent, and takes in most all of the Doctors.
The Calm Before the Storm by Kalleah Not a Ten fan, me, but this story of loves, a clash of faith and ... faith, and luminescent landscape description stayed with me.
The Boy who Killed Time by Netgirl_y2k I normally love this writer for her humor. This is horrifying, and on my favorites list because of that. Ten and Martha.
Take a Little Time by voodoochild Post Children of Earth, a story about how Alice becomes Jack.
Synchronicity by MinervaFan If you love side characters, back story, Sarah Jane, and emotionally eloquent story-telling, this one's for you.
Status Quo Ante by Meredith For everyone who thought The Year That Wasn't would reverberate, and wanted an eloquent, mercilessly kind story of that.
Some Are Boojums by Amy Wolf When I want frightening, and reminding that the Doctor is sometimes horrible, this is one I revisit.
Sohcahtoa by Petra LeMaitre The OT3 in as alien, and dry, and entertaining, a way as possible.
Slipping by amberite Amberite doesn't write much DW fic any more. I wish she did, because this "Alien sex is alien" story has stayed with me for years.
Sic Semper Tyrannis by Meredith One of the best Harriet Jones stories I've read, with added Doctor smack-down.
Seven Days That Shook Captain Jack's Pants by RedScharlach I can't tell you why I laugh at Torchwood crack so much. Maybe it's the Rift.
Seed Pearls by HonorH HonorH is very good. She writes an inventive, believable tale of Rose and the man who won her. It's not the Doctor.
Run by Katrine Short, clean and hard to get out of the mind; Rose copes.
Right at Home by sahiya Three DW-Vorkosiverse stories? Yes. Because Sahiya's outing has the manic energy and wit that such a crossover demands.
Revelation of the Aubertides by Vali The Tenth Doctor, Romana, pirates; grief, timelines, memory, and the Family of Blood. Read and marvel.
Path of Needles by TARDIS_stowaway As good a travel into the Whoniverse by way of the Brothers Grimm as I've ever read.
Passes the Storm by Camilla Sandman I keep this by my bed, one of the first fics I ever read. I still cry at the end.
Out of Joint by HonorH A dynamic, life-filled crossover with the Firefly!Verse. It works as adventure and much more. Nine, Jack and Rose.
Nights Like This by Joan Milligan This story did the impossible; it made me understand how someone could love the Sixth Doctor. And it introduced me to Evelyn.
Necessity by KerrAvonsen I've said it before, and will again: one of the best PotW AUs ever, with a Dalek that rocks and rolls.
Mind The Gap by moonmonkey I hadn't read Gaiman's "Neverwhere" before I read this Eighth Doctor crossover. The book had to measure up to this when I did.
Memento by Cathica Cathica is elegant, deep, inventive, twisted and kind; this story of Rose finding a gift for the Ninth Doctor is an example of her talents.
Long Way for a Shortcut by Netgirl_y2k Best. Donna Fix-it. Ever. Also the funniest.
Like the Sea Wind by Joan Milligan I don't know Sapphire and Steel, but this makes me want to.
Like In A Fairy Tale by nostalgia A long time fan takes on SJA and weaves a short, sadly exhilarating story about Clyde.
Last Train from Iskenderun by JJPOR This meticulous and assured writer can take me anywhere. Here he takes me to the past of a passing SJA character, and makes grand adventure.
Kindred Spirits by RobinC Brief, sweet and sharp. Eleven, ca. "The Lodger."
Killing Rose by Cathica The best writers can sometimes be those who can take the darkness and make us understand it, even catch its gleam. Jack, Nine and Rose.
Jackie's Strength by unfolded73 I love Jackie Tyler. So does this writer, and she does it well.
It Also Travels Through Time by PencilGuardian Nine and an archaeologist. It's dense and carefully observed and well worth reading.
In the Moment by JJPOR Another one by JJPOR, this one making me feel the Fourth Doctor for the first time, and love Romana again.
In The End by Sarah This wasn't Rory's fate, thank god, but this is brilliant none the less.
In Human Hands by rallalon It's "In Human Hands." That's why.
In A New Form, Broken Form by StrandedOnEarth I adore the Third Doctor, and this story gets under his skin in a beautiful way.
Humans by rosa_acicularis From one of the most frightening NuWho episodes comes a gorgeous, poignant collection of character sketches.
Home by ClocketPatch This writer takes my favorite Doctors, the Third and the Ninth, and brings them together in an inventive and heart-wounding way. It's fantastic.
Hey, Soldier by Sigyn An unusual take on the fate of Stephen, in Children of Earth. Proof that wish-fulfillment in fanfic needn't be bad writing.
Hey Now Hey Now by Cryptile This one's hard and inevitable. Rose learns the price of being changed by an alien and a cold universe.
Heartbeats by nonelvis This one is worth it for everything, but especially the last sentence. Eight to Nine, via a Sandman crossover.
Happily Ever Afters (Are Not Your Absolution) by Camilla Sandman Two of my favorite worlds, DW and BSG, become one, and it's done seamlessly. Ten and Martha.
Handler by MinervaFan Beautifully done femslash involving the redoubtable Jo and my beloved Harriet. It works in a lovely way.
Good Night by rosa_acicularis One of the best uses of dream/nightmare imagery it's been my nervous pleasure to read. The Doctor and Martha and more.
Going Forward, In All Her Beliefs by Lurky McLurklurk I wish the author had gone forward with a sequel. Rose, Ace, Mickey and more.
Ghosts of Me by genagirl If you love Owen, and even if you don't, read this for its embrace of grace, salvation and love.
From This Day to the Ending of the World by icebluenothing This is a solid story, elevated like whoah by the Time War imagery with which it opens.
From the Canyons to the Stars by Elliptic Eye Stunning desert images as a backdrop for a believable Fourth Doctor and an equally believable Leela.
Fanboy by HonorH Jack writes Nine/Rose smut; hilarity ensues, and we are all reminded that the best fans can poke fun at themselves.
Falls the Shadow by Nemo the Everbeing This may be my favorite story ever featuring the Seventh Doctor and Ace. It's heart-breaking - and lifting - breathless, inventive adventure.
Fairytale by schildkroet This story of Mickey and the Eighth Doctor, and the relationship that almost happens, shouldn't work and very nearly doesn't. But it does.
Every Time You Tell It by Kittenmommy A subtle, EveryCompanion's-eye view of travel with the Doctor, told in first person.
Et in Arcadia Ego by Amy Wolf One of the best imaginings I've ever read of how a Time War battle might go. It's frightening and breathlessly dynamic.
Endgame by schildkroet Canon may change, god knows, but it doesn't negate this gorgeous story of the last lady president of Gallifrey. Steel as it bends and breaks.
Elementia by Cathica This inventive collection of Ninth era sketches is beyond well-crafted, beautifully sketched, deeply felt, and brutally lyrical; it's a masterpiece.
Electric Blue by Philomytha Again with the Whoniverse-Vorkosiverse crossovers! This time it's the Eleventh Doctor, Rory and Amy, and again I say to you: go, read.
Echoes by agapi42 Rose and Harriet, or their ghosts, on Woman Wept. It's distant, evocative, chilling and warming, all at the same time.
Dwelling on Might Have Beens by Maymargaret There's something comforting and sturdy - rather like Harry - about this tale of how Harry and Benton deal with the Year that Wasn't.
Don't Know When by karaokegal A story of Algy and Jack, and how Jack comforts Algy at more than one point in his life. It's touching and respectful.
Decanted Memories by amberite Again, Amberite explores the mind and heart, this time in a twisty adventure in the halls of Jack's, Rose's and the Ninth Doctor's memories.
Companionable Silence by AstroGirl This is a story in which Jabe doesn't die, and the Ninth Doctor is her friend. It's as quiet and lovely as its own prose.
Come To Dust by Cryptile The first sentence of this, and the last, have stayed with me since reading. Rose Tyler grows and learns the universe.
Clothes and the Man by KindKit This short, dignified, and beautifully constructed vignette of one of the Third Doctor's acquaintances is a kick, in the best possible way.
Cartographers by Calapine This is a finely crafted story of many Doctors' companions, and how they cope with being on a Stolen Earth, before Journey's End.
Blue Roses by nostalgia This may have been my first NuWho favorite. It's poetic, eloquent and well constructed; and it introduced me to the name of the Blue Rose.
Blue Moon by Primsong Ian and Barbara dance. It's affectionate, diffident, and true, and sees with stars in its eyes, just as they did.
Belle de Jour by Chase820 The only story of Rose, the Doctor and Reinette that ever rang true; and boy, does it ever. Maturity, with bonus TARDIS!Sarah Jane for added chills.
Battlelines by JJPOR If JJPOR doesn't finish this engrossingly real tale of the Brigadier, and what happens after "Battlefield," I shall scream.
At the Going Down of the Sun and in the Morning… by JJPOR On the other hand, he gives us this "Family of Blood" epilogue with Timothy and Edwardian Torchwood. It sings.
At Last by ThetaSigma Call me a schmoop, but I can't not love this story, drabble-ish length, of Tosh and Owen's final meeting.
Antifreeze by Calapine For having Death call the Doctor a "little semi-ephemeral leftover," this story makes my list.
Annotation by nostalgia Rose dreams, perhaps, and it's the richest sort of nightmare. One of my earliest fanfic reads, and still a favorite.
And Seven For a Secret by Aeshna Cross "Guns of Navarone," Nazi Torchwood and Jack Harkness; you might get this, but not as well written.
And Is There Honey Still For Tea? by uktechgirl The only Five/Turlough story on my list; it's good enough to make me understand, Turlough.
Afterlife Romance on a Train by Bubbles San Another "Tosh and Owen's Afterlife" story. It balances easily on the knife edge between whimsy and twee, and is worth the read.
A Thousand Languages by MadLori One of the only stories I've read and loved, in which Rose spends an entire life with the Doctor. It works because it's wise, and unblinking.
A Moment in Time by Eledhwen Eledhwen imagines the story of Susan, and weaves it into what we know of The End of Time. The connection is seamless.
A Gentleman of the Universe by Stressfactor Wilf is remarkable. He deserves a fine ending and a fine story; he gets them both here.
. . . Who Burned Like Starfire by Nemo the Everbeing Once again, a note-perfect rendering of Ace's epiphany about the Seventh Doctor, and how she stands her ground after it.
Bliss by DameRuth And finally, my favorite OT3 series ever, by a writer who combines emotional perspicacity with scientfically-honed observational skills, writing-fu and wit.