Buffy reading

Oh noes! Never-written fic meme.

Ooh, clocketpatch just passed along this one:

Give me the title of a story I've never written, and feedback telling me what you liked best about it, and I will tell you any of: the first sentence, the last sentence, the thing that made me want to write it, the biggest problem I had while writing it, why it almost never got posted, the scene that hit the cutting room floor but that I wish I'd been able to salvage, or something else that I want readers to know.

I love the meta-invention required for this one. Let's do it!
I love space opera, just love it in an undying way that makes me long to write it even though it's so out of fashion in lit'ry SF. (Hollywood hasn't moved on from it, of course. Hollywood SF is either military SF or space opera.) War in space opera is glorious, though, unlike the gritty wars of combat suits and big blocky troopships. Instead in this story I went for light sails and swift absurd two-man spacecraft, single combat, duels, and bitter personal vendettas. The artifact they're chasing after is pure space opera, the way it turns out to be a sword made of pure energy named "Dawnbringer", and that was just so much fun to write.