Today we celebrate one year of fantastic fan fiction. Each and every week, members of The Lemonade Stand share the fics that we've read and loved that week, the stories that moved us to tears whether it was laughter or sadness. We gather the fics that made us think, and left us wanting for more. You can see the product of all that fic loving each week here for 2012. From that list of fantastic fics, a fic of the month is chosen through another poll. These twelve fics truly reflect some of the best work read this year. They are all amazing and we highly recommend you read all of them if you haven’t so far.
Our Fics of the Month for 2012 were:
January- Outbound by Aftrnoondlight
February- Red Kryptonite by SaritaDreaming
March- Dusty by Yellowbella
April- The Blessing & The Curse by TheBlackArrow
May- Blind Spot by FictionFreak95
June- Coming Home by Drotuno and JenRar
July- Pinky Promises by Pretty kitty Artist
August- Caged by Savage7289
September- High Fidelity by Ireen H
October- Now and Then by TroubleFollows1017
November- Beneath the Undertow by Aftrnoondlight
December- Departures by TheFicChick
Then we are given the task of choosing just one. Over 500 people voted and we are proud to announce Blind Spot by FictionFreak95 as TLS Fic of the Year for 2012!
I know Fiction Freak95/Jo is an amazing writer. I love her sense of humor, her snark, her wit… I love her use of elipsises /elipsi(??)… her iconic characters, her ability to spin a yarn. I love her heart and how that comes through in the love that’s woven into her characters’ beings. So, it goes without saying that I knew I would love Blind Spot.
However, it was at the very beginning of the third chapter when I knew this fic wasn’t just another story to love, this story was something different. Jo’s Blind Spot Bella (or Little Bird as Edward and I prefer) was a character I’d never met before. She was refreshing, new, with an outlook on life that was completely original to TwiFic. She had an innate intelligence and a quirky sense of humor. She had a certain style and sense of self and it was all right there: well thought out, lovable and unique.
On the other hand, don’t even get me started on Edward. I hated this Edward. Jo made him an asshole: a rude, drunken failure. Of course it’s Edward, so you know there’s some reason deep down for all of his faults – but I didn’t care. I loved hating Edward, and I loved that Jo was able to make this character grow and change - that she made an Edward that could finally win over not only Bella, but also a much harsher critic: myself.
And let’s not forget Garrett… a ghost has not ever been able to move me the way that ghost could. I swear, Jo made him as real as any ghost has ever been. In fact, I’m convinced he guided my Google search one night, but I digress (get outta my head, Dick).
Those are just three characters, but a TwiFic has never created an entire town the way it has been written in Blind Spot. You knew businesses, owners, patrons, streets, homes… it was all painted as well as any published piece of literature. I felt I could draw a map of Madisonville, LA at one point, and that I could do it in color with the proper trees and foliage.
But I think it was really the beauty of Jo’s words and the truth of her characters’ emotions that really set this fic apart for me. Every passage of Blind Spot was imbued with honest emotion written more poetically than anything Jo’s written before. My favorite passage (one I’ve read more than once, or twice, or three times) :
"There you are," was all she said before pulling me down into another kiss that told me she didn't want to wait 'til morning…
…As I pushed, she arched. As I kissed, she grabbed. And as we moved with each other under those blankets, in that old house in the middle of a town I never would have guessed myself to be a resident of in a million years, I somehow knew what she was talking about.
What she'd been talking about since we met.
I could feel it. Everywhere.
I slowed a little, needing that feeling to last a little while longer all of a sudden, and brushed some hair out of her face so I could look her in the eyes when I responded to what she'd said.
So she could see what she'd done... how she'd woken up a part of me I thought was lost forever.
"Sorry it took me so long."
It had taken Edward a freakin’ long time (an apology was totally warranted), but by the time he Jo brought us there, we the readers - along with all of the residents of Madisonville - wanted it with all of our hearts.
Please read Blind Spot if you haven’t already. Read not only a piece of fan fiction, but a piece of literature.
Congratulations, Jo! This is such a well-deserved honor. I can’t wait to see where you take us next.
From SueBee the Beta Fairy:
Never in a million years did I think I’d fall in love with a ghost, but then I started working on Blind Spot and... well, you get the idea. Yes, I adore Grumpy, this strong, amazing Bella, my favorite Alice, and even Mr. Newton, but Garrett… oh my Garrett. Even after all of these months, I still have a place in my heart for all of them, with a special spot reserved just for Garrett. I’ve never had characters linger with me for so long after a story, to the point that I don’t know if I’ll ever truly let them go, and it’s all due to Jo’s writing. Each time I rec Blind Spot to someone, I try to put my feelings for it into words and usually just come up with “It’s perfect and special and you need to read it.” And inevitably, I get an effusive thank you after they’ve read it and a
“You were so right.”
Jo’s ability to create these fully formed characters blows me away on a regular basis. From The Dick and The Swan (and Hanna of course) to Vineward and Pie Girl and now with Blind Spot, she creates people, not characters. People with flaws, with demons, with humor, with strength, and with unique voices that really do make them seem real. I really do think The Dick is down in DC, pulling his hair out with worry over something Hanna has done, while The Swan acts as the voice of reason (or, ahem, distracts him). Vineward and Pie Girl are sitting on a porch at the vineyard gazing at the vines and enjoying life. And Grumpy and Bella are curled up together down in Louisiana with Garrett checking in on them periodically (when he’s not messing with Jo’s website, that is).
I’ve always considered it an honor and a privilege that Jo let me come on board as her beta. The fact that she trusts me with her fantastic words (and ellipses) truly boggles my mind. But even more than that, the fact that she’s become one of my closest friends through this whole adventure possibly makes me the luckiest person in this fandom.
From Jaime Arkin:
Sweetest Jo - You know I love your stories and your writing and Blind Spot was no exception. You weaved an incredible story and I'm so honored that you shared it with us. Moments of pain and sorrow were eclipsed by moments of discovery and love and you took the bare bones of the characters that they were and turned them into something much, much more. Your unique spin and way of telling a story really brought Blind Spot to life and it wouldn't have been the same had someone else tried to create it. Completely deserving of Story of the Year!
On a personal note, you are one of the most talented, sweet, and dedicated people I have the honor of knowing. Thank you for allowing me to connect with you. You're one of the people I expect to have in my life for eternity. Love you!
Blind Spot, where to begin? When I read the summary and it said 'slightly supernatural' I almost didn't read it. However, since I've loved all of the other stories Jo has written, I figured I owed it to myself to try something new from someone who's as talented as she is. So happy I did because, while it was a bit different, it was a well-written, exciting, angsty and over-all great story. The 'slightly supernatural' parts of the story were completely believable and so well-written I was hanging on every word. I loved it, and recommend it to any and everyone!
What can I say about Blind Spot and Jo FicFreak? I mean… I can only say AMAZING so many times. Maybe I can express it like the old Batman sitcom KA-POW! BAM! SPLOOSH! SOCK! BIFF!! FLRRBBB! Maybe? No? Okay…
Well, I was hooked to the story from the start and it quickly became one of my favorites. Jo has a way of just bringing the story to life like no one else. Characters that keep calling you back again and again. It was suspenseful, powerful, funny, and heartbreaking. I had been in such a reading slump at the time and I desperately needed something different and new. Something fresh that no one else was doing or trying to do. With Blind Spot I never knew what to expect next. There was a bit of mystery, some paranormal, and lots of HOT loving. There is just so much to fucking LOVE about it. This story deserved Fic of the Year. Hell, can we get a Fic of the Century?
And Jo? She's real. Beautiful, loyal, sweet, and fucking hilarious. A true friend that would help bail you out of jail (and probably the one that helped get you in there in the first place LOL). I wouldn't want her any other way. Jo, I love you. You are spectacular. Congrats on Fic of the Year. You deserve it! You worked so hard on this story and put so much fucking soul into it and it shows. Hell this proves it. Do you get a trophy or anything with this? You should demand one… or maybe a least a gift card or something. LOL. Way to go, Jo!!! Word!
If there was ever someone who deserved to win Fic of the Year for one of their stories, it would be Jo. Not only is she such a huge support to readers and writers within this fandom, but she’s a great friend too.
Blind Spot was the perfect read; it was mysterious, sweet and kinda funny, a little bit angsty, sexy as hell, and just plain excellent. Like all of Jo’s other work it was honest and well written, and something you just loved right from the start. I’m so glad I was around to experience it while it was unfolding.
Congratulations on the Fic of the Year win, Jo, I love you!
Jo is one of the first friends I made in fanfiction land lol. I honest-to-God didn't even know she wrote when we first met on facebook! I was a newbie then and she made an impression on me from the start with her friendliness. She was always approachable and to this day, still is. And Wicked sense of humor doesn't even begin to cover it!! *wink* She's someone that provides a smile to each and every person that is fortunate to be her friend and someone you definitely appreciate having in your corner.
I eventually "discovered" her other talent...writing. She writes with her whole heart and pours every bit of it into her characters. Each and every story. Her fans are always clamoring for more from her and BLIND SPOT was one of those stories that had us ALL glued to our computer screen every single update!! We wanted to know where she would take us with her version of Edward and Bella and her very original use of a ghost named Garrett.
I fell hard for the intense, broody, sexy Edward she weaved and her Bella was one-of-a-kind special. She was a psychic of sorts and while some people used her up for their selfish purposes, I adored watching Edward fall for her and become fiercely protective over her. The rough exterior of Edward was peeled away in time and his personal albatross of guilt was uncovered with regard to his deceased brother, Garrett, and the story leading to his death. Bella and Edward's chemistry sizzled off the screen, which is super important to me as a reader. If I don't believe in the characters, I can't read the story. That was NEVER a problem with BLIND SPOT!
Jo, I'm so proud to congratulate you on being Author of the TLS Fic of the Year and even more proud to call you a friend. I love you lady. You make the world a greater place to live in<3♥
The fandom would be a cold, dark place without Jo. Don’t laugh, it’s true. She is this massive force of humor, happy, and heat that makes it ok to say, “Yeah, I’d do the ghost brother. In a heartbeat.”
It’s always exciting to open up a new story from an author and friend you’ve come to love and trust, and Blind Spot knocked me over and kept me under the “need to know more” wave right from the beginning. It begins with a dream of vows and a kiss that is meant to be remembered. And followed by a night that is impossible to forget.
Gently scented candles flickered and danced, invading my senses, romanticizing the mood. As though it needed any help.
"I want you." You have me. Forever.
The dress I'd worn was gone and his black suit as well as he hovered above me, placing soft, tender, needy kisses, much like he was following a map of some sort to my lips.
The backs of his fingers moved lightly against hardened nipples… down along the dip between my breasts, slowing against my belly, stopping only when he found the wetness that was a direct reaction to his touch. To everything about him.
Slight wrinkles appeared at the edges of his eyes when he smiled down at me and my heart wanted to burst from the intensity of what he was conveying in that smile.
I knew him. Better than he knew himself.
I was hooked by the dream, but with each chapter I fell more and more in love with each of the characters. I wanted to cover a shift for Bella and turn her phone off. I wanted to make Edward sit down and stop thinking about the past, if you know what I mean. And the brother? Well, being a ghost whisperer never sounded so appealing. Lol
Congratulations on winning Fic of the Year! I'm so happy for you and thank you for sharing your stories and warmth with us. You and your words will always have a special place in my heart.
From their very first meeting, Grumpward knocked his Sweet Bird off balance (and into those muddy, swampy waters) and Tuesdays were never the same. I’m thinking of petitioning to have Tuesdays removed from the calendar because there’s no point in having them anymore without a Blind Spot update. Congrats!
From Les Sharp:
Congratulations Jo! I can't think of a story more worthy of Fic of the Year than Blind Spot ... or a more deserving author! Blind Spot was amazing; from start to finish it was a story that kept me wanting more and more with every update. The way you weave images and words together to paint pictures is truly special and this fandom is very blessed that you share your immense talent - and most importantly your beautiful soul and heart - with the rest of us. It is truly a precious gift and one I know I don't take for granted. It's not often that we find someone so generous in spirit and deed as you! You always give your readers so much, a great story first, but you also give us a little piece of you ... and that my gorgeous friend, is the most special of all! Congratulations on your win!! I'm so happy for you and so blessed to be able to call you my friend.
The first thing I want to say is congratulations to FictionFreak95 for winning TLS Fic of the Year. I’m lucky to call this talented, beautiful woman my friend. I’m also lucky enough to get to be included in her amazing writing process as a prereader. So my Blind Spot experience started one afternoon, when Jo came to me saying, “Hey, I had a thought about a Psychic Bella. What do you think?” What I did was say ooh that could be interesting, tell me more. Needless to say, she did with a 28 chapter story of love, loss and every hope in between.
Each character in this story was crafted to not only stay true to heart of fanfiction, but to also celebrate it in new, fresh ways. One of my very favorite things about this story is the fact it’s purely character driven. Is there action... yes. Is there paranormal phenomena...yes. But at the core, we have a story about love, in all of its forms. The stories that tend to move me the most are the ones that create a world I want to exist in. I wanted to go visit Madisonville, LA and see Edward’s boat house while reading this story. They became like friends to me, and that, as a reader, is what captured me.
I can never say enough how lucky I am to get to take part, however small, in this bewitching author’s process. Thank you, Jo, for giving us these characters and moments like this to cherish.
"Dance with me, Little Bird."
No… I didn't understand him at all, but I couldn't decline, even if I'd wanted to, so I let him hold me there, hoping on some level that I could take away whatever pain he was feeling that made him so angry.
As the music wafted, he pulled me slightly toward him.
He nearly seemed awkward, almost as if he was afraid to be close to anyone, as he turned my hand from being held prisoner, to becoming a partner.
I watched him closely, waiting for more information about him to hit me… anything I could use that would give me hope that he might have something else inside of him other than the drowning of his soul.
His eyes were locked on mine as we began to sway there on that rooftop, our fingers entwining between our bodies while his other slid to my waist. The heat of his touch caused a familiar arousal inside of me and I could feel the need radiating from him. I wanted to lean my head against his chest, just like I'd felt it happen in a fantasy I could only obscurely remember in that instant with him.
Instead, I rested my free hand against his torso, unwilling to let go of his other one, but we didn't speak as we danced to the words that reached us. We didn't need to.
His scowl told me he was bitter… exasperated perhaps… but I didn't know what about or who with until he'd said it.
With a whisper and forced control and with every bit of desperation I'd felt from him… from someone, that is… that I'd encountered before.
"I want you," he told me and with those words, it all came rushing like a storm had just found us in that tiny pocket of land buried deep inside Madisonville.
Whenever I think of Blind Spot, there is one scene that pops into my mind first.
He was so deliberate. So purposeful when we did this. Like he was trying to find something? or feel something... maybe continue to feel something.
I didn't know; I just knew it was perfect.
And completely obliterating to be with him like that.
When my hands flew to his shoulders for balance and my orgasm was close, he pulled me down into a kiss filled with heartache and possession... with loyalty and forever.
He came as I came and I moved against him, wanting it to last and last but I knew it couldn't.
So I let it subside as I kissed him back with patience and caring... love and beauty.
We were like yin and yang sometimes, I thought. Perfectly balancing each other.
I love the interaction of Bella & Edward in this moment because it feels so intimate and true to me. They are so immersed in each other that their bubble is palpable. The way Jo writes these scenes I, as the reader feel almost a visceral connection to her people. She makes me want them to take on the world and win and with Blind Spot she gave us all a victory.
From Kimmie aka Crooked Smile:
I love you, Jo. I love you, because how could I not? There is not a single alternate universe that I would not want to surround myself with your words, kind soul and gracious friendship. You do own a very deep...very sacred part of me that it's unfair to even think I could explain what you mean to me. A part that is daring enough to believe that I also have a similar place in your heart. It's time to bask in this so-very-well-deseved accomplishment, my sweetest. Now give us a Dickish grin and 'own' it
I first read the lovely Jo when my good friend Corie couldn’t stop spouting good words about “The Dick” and his creator. I was quickly hooked and went on to read her other stories. When Jo started Blind Spot, I was automatically in. I loved this story from the start! One thing I appreciate in fic is an original storyline and boy did this have it. A “clairvoyant” Bella, an older Alice and Jasper, taking place in Louisianna? Yes and please. Not to mention a troubled, sexy, ex-cop Edward. Perfect! I am so pleased that this won fic of the year. Jo, you totally deserve it! Congrats!
Jo is a very talented lady. She writes straightforward and honest characters, and she manages to create rich worlds and characters without flowery or convoluted language. The reader is thrust into Blind Spot's Louisiana setting so easily. I have no clue how she does it. She is like the Transporter from Star Trek personified. Readers are beamed into her world.
I think that's the secret to her success--everything she writes is so damn readable! Her Edwards - and Blind Spot Edward is no exception - are often troubled, a little dark, and sexy-as-hell. I love the twist on canon in Blind Spot: how Bella is the psychic. Her Bella is fabulous, but no one, NO ONE, write a more unf-y Edward than Jo. My Bella loves fucking her Edward. That is was why I held a gun to her head to make her write Penal Code with me.
Blind Spot is gritty and unexpected with fabulous dialogue. Her words always have such a visceral effect on me.
I have been a proud fan of Jo and her stories ever since I read Vines. Then I fell in love with The Dick and Meet the Masens and the pudding-loving Penalward, before waiting impatiently for every single update of Blind Spot.
Blind Spot has it all… mystery, suspense, and just the right amount of sexy woven in. It’s so easy to fall in love with every one of Jo’s characters. Bella is saucy, Edward is hot and bothered, and I even fell in love with the ghostly Garrett (who I’ve tried to steal away from SueBee too many times).
Jo is not only an excellent author, but a sweet and wonderful person. I will always adore her for taking the time to chat or talk or reply to me when I first came to the fandom. Congratulations on winning FOTY!! Blind Spot and Jo are very deserving.
I may have said this the last time I reviewed a FotY, but it's true for this story just like it was for There is a Light. The best thing about Blind Spot is you don't feel like you're reading fanfic. You feel like you are reading a book you bought at the store. One that has original characters, an interesting mystery, and smoking hot chemistry between characters. Blind Spot is all those things and more. Jo has a way of building these characters with flaws and pasts, with stories that go beyond the present day. She makes you fall in love with people who aren't even ALIVE (*coughs* Garrett rocks *coughs*) I love her humor and her ability to show us what real sadness and despair looks like, what it feels like. There is no one more deserving of this win. Jo is a talent who knows no bounds. She is also one of the sweetest, most generous of spirits. I am lucky to know her and to call her friend. Hopefully that will earn me a signed first edition of her very own published book someday. I know it will. Like Bella from Blind Spot, I can feel these things. xoxo, Trouble
Sweet, sweet, Jo!
Congrats on winning Fic of the Year for Blind Spot. You know how much I love this fic. I'm glad you took a chance and wrote Bella having visions. Edward... gah, my heart hurt for him. I love him and his car, Lol! Garrett... who in the hell would have thought I'd love a ghost but I do.
Anyways, your such a joy to the fandom and inspire so many. I'm so glad we share a love for Jensen. I've had the hots for him since Dawson's Creek -- Joey and Pacey forever. LOLOL! Oh, and all your fuck it pics you post, right on sweetie.
Please continue to give us your amazing words. Keep shining because you are one of the best there are. Love you lots lady.
When his eyes adjusted and he saw me standing there, he dismissed me like a piece of furniture and finished off his beer. After that, he got up to fetch another one.
He at least had the decency to zip his pants up again as he passed me by. I tried not to blush as my eyes darted to that zipper.
"What the hell are you doing in my house, Miss Swan?" he asked, then his brow knit together and he added another question. "And how did you get in here anyway?"
"Technically, it's Emmett's house, and I'm sort of an… unofficial manager of the property." I held the key up for him to see I hadn't broken in illegally or anything then made to pick up some of the empty bottles he was decorating the living room with in an attempt to look at something other than his bare chest. "I thought you had work to do here?"
"Change of plans."
"So you've decided to trash the place instead?"
A sort of harsh chuckle came from his throat and he opened another bottle of beer, taking the twist off cap between his thumb and middle finger, then winging it across the room at me from over his shoulder.
I ducked and scowled at him.
"I've decided… that the door handle can wait 'til tomorrow," he told me, then he chugged his beer down and looked at the bottle. "Man that's good stuff."
It was almost as though he was trying to irritate me every time I saw him. But that would be ridiculous. He didn't even know me. What would be the purpose?
My cell phone buzzed and I checked it, smiling when I recognized the number on the screen as Demetri's.
Mr. Cullen caught my eyes when I returned my slightly uncomfortable attentions back to him. "Boyfriend not smart enough to run the other way yet?"
"He's not my…" I huffed. "It's really none of your business, Mr. Cullen, and I'm not trying to start anything with you here. I just came by to drop off the drill I gave Emmett for his birthday so you could fix his door quicker, but it's clear you have no intentions of…"
"You do realize it's not my job to fix my landlord's broken door, right?"
"But you said you would. Emmett's very busy with…"
"Not my problem, and legally it really doesn't matter."
"But you said… you would," I insisted.
"Maybe I like the door the way it is… helps keep out the riffraff, ya know what I mean?" He eyed me with a drunken wink, insinuating I was included in that description.
He waved me off. "I'll fix the goddamn door, Miss Swan. Don't you worry your pretty little head about it, 'kay doll?"
He went to shove me out of the house like he had the day before, but I stopped him this time, grabbing at his hand as he made his move. The moment our fingers met, I heard a loud popping sound, like a gun going off. It caused me to jump and, before I could make sense of what had happened, a strong wave of heart ache and sadness overwhelmed me.
I nearly collapsed as my legs gave out but he caught me, a low groan escaping him as he did. And he held me there securely, bent at the knees with me safely in his arms, no more than four inches from the sharp wooden corner of Emmett's… I mean Mr. Cullen's kitchen table.
I stared into his eyes bewildered, feeling as though I was being pulled down into something that was wanting to drown me. Something that felt very heavy… and very dark.
Even through his drunken state, he could see the glassiness of my eyes as I fought back tears that threatened me. His expression became somewhat confused as he watched them dilate. My eyes, that is. And somehow, surprisingly even, he seemed as though he actually cared about what had just happened to me… at least enough to ask if I was okay.
I wasn't about to tell him that I suddenly had a small, disturbing idea of why he drank.
Or apologize for the loss of his brother and how abruptly he'd been taken from this world.
It was awkward enough when things like that happened to me with people I knew. I wasn't about to wig a complete stranger out by telling him I could quite literally feel his pain and sorrow. Not to mention the fact that I hadn't really had a lot of experiences with past takes of people lives. Not to say it never happened but rarely and this one was so strong… so…I needed to get away from him, the hurt was… I could barely breathe and felt like I was going to choke on the vision. I wasn't sure how to explain my sudden change in attitude, so I stood myself up, taking him with me, and steadied the feet that wanted to run.
As his hands slid away from my waist, I fought the urge to keep them there and shook off the strong pull he seemed to have on me in that moment.
"I'm fine, I'm just…" I turned to motion toward the door as I moved toward it. "The drill is just outside; I'll let Emmett know you'll fix the door tomorrow."
And then I was gone.
There was only ever one choice for me when it came to voting for TLS Fic of the Year for 2012, though I deeply loved at least half of the nominees, it was Blind Spot that took the cake for me.
I read this story almost a year ago but I still remember the way it made me feel while reading it. Blind Spot had every element an amazing story can have... from mystery, thrill, hurt, healing and suspense to romance, action, comedy, heartbreak and love... Blind Spot nailed every great emotion one can have. It even managed to fit in some amazing supernatural aspects. There couldn't be a more complete story, in my opinion.
I wish that I could write an A+ review for it but there is so much about the story that I liked (( everything )) that my mind physically shuts down every time I try to begin one. I've just settled with the realization that my words could never do this story justice and anything that I could say, has already been said better, by someone else.
Jo, I hope that one day you will be on my bookshelf... preferably Blind Spot but we all know where that conversation leads so I'll hush. I hope that you take your talent that you've shared with us, here in our sweet fandom, and one day SOON offer it up to the world in the form of perfect paperbacks. Thank you, thank you for your friendship and for so many memorable and perfect stories. Don't ever stop, Jo.