Fandom Anniversary

Sixteen Years. As many of you know, I learned the ropes of writing fiction in fandom. I’ve always left my old stories, even the ones that make me cringe, posted. It’s sort of like … proof of where I came from, how I developed, what I achieved. But it’s also because I love those stories. I’m proud of them.

Forthright’s Doku-sona (from the Dokuga website)
Gift!art by FoxOfTwilight (kinda how we met!)

This week, I received a flurry of emails from folks because, the only site where all of my stories are posted, is teetering on the verge of extinction. Abandoned by its administration, the dinosaur may soon vanish, taking everything with it. And my long-time readers, the ones who go back to regularly reread my fanfics, don’t want to lose their favorite stories.

It’s a shame. I’ve often joked over the years that fanfic writers are paid in reviews. Oh, there’s a stats page, too. My numbers are crazy. If you do searches for the most-reviewed and most-favorited stories in the InuYasha fandom, I have 6 titles in the top 20.

  • forthright is on the favorites list of 6,700~ members
  • my accumulated stories add up to over a million (1,230,000+) words
  • my most popular story, Unspoiled, is on the favorites list of 10,785 members
  • my most reviewed story, Lord Charming, has 24 million reads and has just shy of 20,000 reviews (uh, that’s spread over 800 chapters, for context)

Assorted gift!art | ARTISTS: lila-me, rikayu-chan, j_lianne, janey-jane
Oodles more art on dA: Forthright Fanclub & Unspoiled Fanclub

I’m so grateful that some of my long-time readers followed me here … and trust my storytelling enough to have picked up the Amaranthine Saga. In a very real way, I wrote the series to tickle my fandom friends. A “-miko” for every main character, familiar plot set-ups (an enslaved butler, two janitors with a big secret, a hoarder and a home organizer, an accidental engagement involving a comb, and even a marooned wolf on an island with a resort), and borrowed settings (apple orchard, college campus, Founder’s Coffee Shop, and even Stately House). And Hisoka-sensei, of course (he’s an OC from Unspoiled). Early on, I used to say that I plotted the entire Saga because he deserved a story of his own.

I’ve been asked (again and again) to post my fics to AO3 (An Archive Of Our Own), which is where all the cool kids hang out these days. I did claim a profile, which is “forthrightly” since someone audaciously snagged my penname ahead of me. Here’s a link. If the worst occurs, I’ll migrate my stories to AO3. Nothing of importance will be lost.

“Miroku” | Commissioned Art by PurpleRebecca

I mean it when I say … thank you for supporting my stories wherever you find them. And happy anniversary to me! ::confetti toss::

Mood Stripes Art

Color Code. If you haven’t checked out Mood Stripes yet, my apologies for this mild spoiler. Stuff happens, and Sesshoumaru’s stripes begin to reflect his moods. (Yes, he has them.) The catch is, only Kagome can see the shifting shades, but she doesn’t know what they mean. Naturally, she’s determined to figure him out.

•  •  •

She was definitely the only one seeing the color show, but it was also obvious that the others were reacting to it. Certain shades of green brought Shippo running, but oranges sent him scurrying. And Inuyasha mostly grumbled at the oranges, but black turned him silent and solicitous.

Mood Stripes, Ch48 “Connected”

•  •  •

Cheat Sheet. Many (many, many) of you have asked me to provide you with a chart of the colors and their meanings. Continue reading


Taking Suggestions! My Twitter feed has been blowing up with this challenge for two days now, and I’ve been dropping suggestions left and right. (Some even get chosen! Fwee!) Well, I didn’t have to coax very hard for FoxOfTwilight to agree to do the #SixFanartChallenge specifically for the Songs & Saga. So what are your Amaranthine universe requests? Drop them in comments, and we’ll pick our six favorites!


@ForthWrites on Twitter >>

Bard & Barbarian

“Turn on the Charm.” My Patreon-exclusive story has updated, and I’m pleased with the warm reception Imber (and Marc) have received. At the moment, the only way to read along is to become a patron, but I’m not setting any tiers. Even if you can only part with $1 a month, you’re in … and warmly welcomed. And as an added bonus, you’ll contribute to the community goal I’ve set. Once I reach 400 followers, I’ll begin another Amaranthine story over there. Involving three sisters, twelve pledges, and the long-awaited stirring of a sleeping landmark. ::eyebrow waggle::

From today’s chapter…

BnB 006

Bard & Barbarian has already garnered some fanart! Many thanks to FerperoNii for her concept of the ranger Desiderii, who is Imber’s human mother.

Desiderii by FerperoNii

forthright on Patreon >>

Kagome, Kagome

FanArt. I just rummaged through my folders. You wouldn’t believe how much fanart I have. Some sketches. Some portraits. Everything in between and in every kind of style. I still remember the breathless joy I felt over my first gift of art in fandom. And I’ll still always be amazed when my stories inspire the stuff. Here’s a fun set. You know these AUs, amiright? ::twinkle::


Kagome, Kagome by idlemusings

Roses Are Red

For those following my InuYasha x YuYu Hakusho crossover, Affinity has just updated. Another installment will be coming in the next few days. Meanwhile, I found a bit of fanart in the depths of my archive. Kurama (the male lead in Affinity) is famous for using a red rose as a weapon. James from Pokemon‘s Team Rocket (I officially claim him as my first anime crush) is also prone to flourishing a red rose. So my good friend jupeboxgal created this art for me ages ago. Enjoy! Continue reading