Apocrypha (Law & Order zine)

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Title: Apocrypha
Editor(s): Korillian and Kitteridge
Type: ezine
Date(s): 1997-2007
Medium: online
Fandom: Law and Order
Language: English
External Links: Archive, Blog
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

Apocrypha was a Law and Order ezine that was published from 1997 to 2007, focusing on discussion and fanworks (mostly gen, with a sprinkling of het). There were also two slash stories, something that generated quite a bit of commentary.

The zine also offered a regular challenges, essays, canon resources for aspiring writers, and interviews (both of fan writers, and of TPTB from the show itself).

Zine Moves to Blog

In September 2009, the zine moved to a blog form. The last update of the blog was July 2010.

Some Notable Essays

Interviews with Fans

Two Slash Stories

Icon Ratings

Ratings, in and of themselves, are not meant to be a form of censorship. We'll take anything. And we do mean anything. So read your ratings first: we've set them up as icons, to indicate the content of a particular piece. When you see these icons you'll know what the story contains without us ever giving anything away. We decided to use icons to indicate content, rather than a system like the movies (PG, R, NC-17) because some people are offended by sex. Some by violence. And some are bothered by neither. What's NC-17 to me may be barely PG to you. So here it is, the iconic ratings system for apocrypha:

Sexual Content: This story will contain a scene or scenes in which graphic sexual material is displayed.

Romance: This story contains no graphic sexual material, only light romantic interludes.

Clean: This story contains nothing that could possibly harm anybody. Disney would approve. Nothing offensive, except perhaps this icon.

Language: This story contains language some may find offensive, or vulgarities.

Silly: This story contains silly or satiric material.

Scary: This story contains some frightening or disturbing scenes.

Violence: This story contains active violence (blood, gore, torture).

Angst: This story contains characters going through anguish or anxiety.

Slash: This story contains scenes or themes of a homosexual nature.

Crossover: This story contains a crossover with another TV series, film, or book.

Kitt-Approved: In an egomaniacal nod to one of our editors, this icon is only used when the story formerly was a Kitt choice of the issue.

Kor-approved: In an egomaniacal nod to the other editor, this icon is only used when the story formerly was a Kor choice from an issue.[1]

Summery 1997

"Everybody's Favorite Fiction"

From the editorial:
Here it is, the debut issue of apocrypha, right there on your hot little monitor. As readers as much as writers we had been hoping to create a place to showcase Law & Order fan fiction, works which featured not only our favorite characters but also plot, development, and real stories -- something that we could point to and say "this is what's out there!" Now it looks as if we can. The 'net is overwhelmed with sci-fi/fantasy fanfic -- so why not a little cops-n-lawyers fiction to give it a little more flavor? We're looking forward to reading what's out there, and bringing it to you.
  • Intermezzo, fiction by Water Witch
  • Pride and Penance, fiction by Susianne Baptiste
  • Sunday, fiction by Sam Lopez/Jackluster
  • The Dance, fiction by Gaelin
  • The Princess and the Policeman, fiction by Hans Kitteridge Anderson
  • Ben Stone: A Flawed Gem, non-fiction By Deb White
  • Between the Lines, challenge by Kitteridge

Fall/Winter 1997

"Prescription for Fiction"

The challenge: write about a breakup.

From the editorial:
Where to start, where to start? Well, we got some wonderful Letters to the Editor we're happy to share with you, but if you want to leap right over to the fiction section, may we recommend Korillian's editor's pick of the issue, Christmas In The Oaks by Susianne Baptiste. Korillian says "Sooz's stories are always a treat!" Kitt has reserved her pickings for the Challenges section, pointing her finger at Lori N. Kem's Back Then in particular. Says Kitt, "A whole life in a few words, told with a unique point of view -- hard to see Lennie Briscoe the same way again after reading this one." And be sure to note the artwork included with some of the stories. Magnifique! Additionally, we have a special story which we would be remiss in not pointing out: it's controversial. "A World of Hurt" is the first slash story we've published, and it can be found in the Challenges section. Whether you like the story or not, it does underscore one very important fact about apocrypha -- we'll take on all stories, regardless of subject matter, or relationships within. We hold no preferences on the kind of relationships portrayed -- or who they are with. If we like the story, we'll publish it. And don't forget: challenges are always published, which means they are excellent opportunities for writers to push the envelope. Write us and let us know what you think about any of the stories, good or bad.
  • Command Performance, fiction by Claire Corz Tofa
  • Healing, fiction by Judith Ann Steck
  • White Horses, fiction by Lori N. Kem
  • Christmas In The Oaks, fiction by Susianne Baptiste
  • A Review of "Wannabe," nonfiction by Astral
  • Theapocrypha interview: Author WaterWitch, nonfiction by Kitteridge
  • Last Dance, challenge by Claire Corz Tofa
  • Back Then, challenge by Lori N. Kem
  • A World of Hurt, challenge by Kathie Murphy

1997 Special Holiday Issue

  • Just Another Day At Christmas by Lori N. Kem
  • Secret Santa by Kathie Murphy
  • All These Were Lovely by Kitteridge
  • The Nutcracker by Meg Lark
  • The 12 Days of Law & Order by Tracy Rotkiewicz
  • Yearnings by Sally Stark
  • Memory of a Christmas Gone By by Dana Clay
  • McCoy's Mondelbroid by Jacksgal

Spring 1998

"Subterranean Homeboy"

The challenge: write a story with no romance.

From the editorial:

And here it is, our third full issue of apocrypha, all shiny and new for your reading enjoyment. I suppose we'll eventually stop counting them out loud for you, but for now it's all still fairly new and we're just pleased you're enthusiastic enough to keep sending us stuff and keep reading!

It's been a busy first section of the year for your editors. In addition to moving, changing jobs, moving again, traveling, and just everyday sort of wear and tear, we're a bit fried. But the promise of bringing new fanfic to light always keeps us going, as corny as that sounds. Still, there are always a few instances where we end up not making people happy, either through our choice of stories or by not choosing their fan fiction. So we thought we'd state our mission: we're here to nurture new fanfic. If it's good, and promising, we want to help you make it work. There have been no stories sent to us which were irredeemable; everyone has a chance to make themselves heard. If you don't want to run the risk of rejection, submit to the challenges section to get your feet wet. If you're psychically ready to have your stories looked at critically, send 'em! If we say no, we always offer an author the chance to hear what we really thought, and we think it's a mistake for an author to take a 'no' as a personal rejection. Neither of us, as editors, would be serving anybody to either accept everything or not offer assistance for the things we did reject. Yes, writing is fun, but as editors we have a responsibility to our writers and our readers. We want to promise what we consider the best stuff out there, and we're hoping that the third time around we've continued to fulfill that promise.
  • Reflections, fiction by Eunice
  • Third Time's The Charm, fiction by Gwenn McGovern
  • Day of Reckoning, fiction by Meg Lark
  • Dark Horse, fiction by Susianne Baptiste
  • Keeping Secrets, fiction (part one) by Michelle Leslie
  • McCoy in for Stone: Mor(iarty) of the Same?, nonfiction by Claire Corz Tofa
  • the apocrypha interview: The Writer's #1 Duty: Rene Balcer, nonfiction by Martin Winkler
  • Wonderful Chemistry: Lorraine Toussaint, nonfiction by Kitteridge
  • Just Another Night In Paradise, challenge by Kathie Murphy
  • Black Cat, challenge by Jay JayCee
  • Warming The Bench, challenge by Kitteridge
  • Heart of Stone, challenge by Meg Lark
  • Law and Hors d'Oeuvres, challenge by Susianne Baptiste
  • Miranda (A "Drabble", challenge) by Tirya

Summer 1997

"The Reaper's Helper Gets A Tan"

The challenge: explain a prop.

from the editorial:
Summer's here, and the time is right for...staying in and reading our fourth issue of apocrypha! It's our second summer issue, so this is technically an anniversary, which means it's time to get all full of ourselves and give out awards! Everybody does it, so why not us? Every story, essay, challenge, and interview is eligible to be nominated, and we want you to do the choosing. We've made a list of everything we've published this last year, with links in case you want to do a little re-reading, and then we'd like you to nominate your favorites! Go to the Nominations page, and read the instructions. Next issue, we'll choose our top nominees, snd then you'll be able to vote for the winners! What will they win? Well, we're working on that. But you have to start somewhere! This year, the internet, next year the Shrine Auditorium!
  • Keeping Secrets (part two), fiction by Michelle Leslie
  • Stand Off (part one), fiction by Kim Hood
  • Mary Dinsmore Logan, fiction by Meriden Bruce
  • Afterwards, fiction by Natalie Wilson
  • Friend Indeed, fiction by Zoni
  • Review of Asylum by Lady V.
  • The apocrypha interview: Susianne Baptiste by Korillian
  • Not Forgotten, challenge by Pont Marie
  • The Sloop Jack M., challenge by Lynne Hoffman
  • Attachment of Memories, challenge by Patricia Raymond

Fall 1997

"Kiss the Stories"

The challenge: write a story about a character's school days.

from the editorial:

A full year has gone by since the first issue of apocrypha hit the screens, and we're just thrilled to not only be still up and around, but also to be reading some of the best L&O fan fic we've seen yet! So pat yourselves on the back, readers and writers alike, and let's look forward to another year, and another one after that.... We've added a new section to the 'zine: News. While we only come out a couple times a year, timeliness isn't going to be our forte, but if you have any suggestions for news, or inside information you want confirmed, or anything else you think we can use, please let us know! This could become a place to announce new web pages from L&O fans, too, depending on the response. That said, at least one of our news items is a sad one -- a short obituary of one of our best writers, Lori Kern, who published under the name Lori N. Kem, who died this summer after a bout with cancer. As a tribute, we've relinked the two stories in our Fiction section, and we hope that in reading (or re-reading) them, you'll understand that we've lost a real talent.

On other subjects, we've now got a final list of nominees for the first Blue Wall Awards. Go to The Nominees Page page, and read the instructions, and vote! What will they win? Well, we're still working on that. But you have to start somewhere....
  • Blurred Edges, fiction by Susianne Baptiste
  • Patients, fiction by Michelle M. Leslie
  • Stand Off (part two, fiction) by Kim Hood
  • Too Much To Lose, fiction by Gwenn McGovern
  • A Wind in New York, fiction by Trig
  • Shalom, My Love, fiction by Lynne Hoffman
  • William Kuntsler: The Political Punchline by Susan Green and Kevin Courrier
  • L&O Companions: Susan Greene & Kevin Courrier by Kitteridge
  • Going In Circles, challenge by Lady V.
  • Our Lady of Perfection, challenge by Audrey
  • School Day, challenges by Shelleigh Boyd
  • The Bulldog, challenge by Michelle M. Leslie
  • The Graduate, challenge by Lynne Hoffman

Winter 1997

"Happily Ever After"

The challenge: write a story from a child's point of view.

This issue of the 'zine has no news (well, no news is good news) but we've got several excellent features to point out to you. First off, we have the winners of our very first (hopefully annual) Blue Wall awards. The winning stories and articles have been listed on our Fiction page, and we're hoping you'll enjoy reading them once more. Thanks to everyone who voted! we couldn't have done it without you. Also, in this issue, we've got an advance review (well, advance until November 8) of the first ever Law & Order movie, Exiled. While the return of Mike Logan is never a bad thing, there's no getting around it -- this affects the whole canon of L&O fanfic. Few, if any people have written about his exile on Staten Island (mostly because a lot of us are still in denial) but from here on out, can it really be ignored? We're hoping this'll spark a whole new slew of stories and perspectives. Anyone care to surprise us first?
  • Cathy, fiction by Lynne Hoffman
  • Doubleheader, fiction by Gaelin Wade
  • The Policeman's Wife, fiction by Callie Ward
  • Wagers, fiction by Zoni
  • Ode to Law & Order, fiction by Michelle Leslie
  • A Week In The Life Of Law & Order by Susan Greene and Kevin Courrier
  • Exiled: A Review of A Law & Order Movie (With Spoilers) by Kitteridge
  • Exiled: A Review of A Law & Order Movie (Minimal Spoilers) by Kitteridge
  • A Letter Long Overdue, challenge by Shelleigh Boyd
  • A Weekend Thing, challenge by Lady V.
  • My Dad Is Cool, challenge by Audrey
  • Tomorrow, challenge by Lynne Hoffman
  • Welcome to New York, challenge by Lissa

1998 Holiday Issue

  • A First Christmas by Lynne Hoffman
  • Deirdre by Lisa Florence
  • Forum For Death by Shelleigh B.
  • Native Tongue by Susianne Baptiste

Spring 1999

"By 'Booker,' By Crook"

Challenge: Use "Hong Kong" in the story.

From the editorial:
The end of the millennium? Better get things organized now, before the evil demon Y2K comes after you...who would have ever thought we'd reach a year with three "9"s in it? Certainly not us. Then again, we couldn't possibly be more surprised that we're going to be able to keep apocrypha going into the next century! (Barring any sudden lawsuits from Dick Wolf, that is...) That said, our inspiration and full reason for existence, Law & Order will also be chasing into the next century! Full reason for celebration! And fanfic! And so, without further ado, here's our very pink, very Valentiney Spring issue of apocrypha for your reading enjoyment! This issue of the 'zine has a little news (so go check it out!) and some new features, including a Siskel-Ebert'esque review of an excellent Law & Order episode, featuring your editors as Siskel and Ebert (but neither of us will admit which is the bald one, or which is the fat one), and plus, we've got some very special stories to pass along to you.
  • Cascade, fiction by Dorothy Marley
  • Mrs. Greevey, fiction by Angilbas
  • Shadows, fiction by Lady V.
  • You Don't Know Jack!, fiction (Afterlife Version) by Kitteridge
  • Spring Break, fiction by Derek Stewart
  • The apocrypha Interview: Michelle Leslie by Korillian
  • Coma: An Unbiased, Unfettered Review by Kitt and Kor
  • No Trumpets, No Drums, challenge by Elisabeth Blair

Summer 1999

"Poison Ivy (Start Scratchin')"

Fall 1999

"Indifferent Issue (we never recovered from the nuns)"

Halloween 1999

"Prisoner of Fanfic"

1999 Special Holiday Issue

1999-2000 Winter

"Out Of The Half-Light Issue"

2000 Spring

"Fanfic Life Choice Issue"

2000 Summer

"a story in the family issue"

2000 Fall

"the violence of autumn issue"

2000 Special Holiday Issue

2001 Winter

"Torrents of Fanfic Issue"

2001 Spring

"Shroomin' Fanfic, Man Issue"

2001 Summer

"The Fiction Sharers"

2001 Fall

"The Serpent's Fictional Tooth"

2001 Special Halloween Issue

2001 Special Holiday Issue

2002 Winter

"The Trouble With Fanfic"

2002 Spring

"Sonata For Solo Fanfic"

2002 Summer

"The Blue Wall Issue"

2002 Fall

"The Confessional Issue"

2003 Winter

"The Wages of Fanfic"

2004 Winter

"A Fanfic Aria"



Reactions and Reviews: Lack of Slash

In apocrphya's history, only two slash stories were published: A World of Hurt by Kathie Murphy and Cascade by Dorothy Marley. The editors said of "World of Hurt" that "to our knowledge, this is the first slash fanfic ever written with Law & Order characters in mind."[2]

Dorothy Marley recalls:

I was always sad that there wasn't more slash in apocrphya, but the truth of the matter is that at the time there was very little Law & Order slash, period. I can only recall a few names of other slash writers from the late 90s: myself, Jenny Lyon, Trig, Keiko Kirin, D. W. Wilson and a handful of others.

"Cascade" was fairly well-received by the apocrypha readership--something I was by no means sure of when I submitted the story. There's really very little slash content in the story, to be honest; it's mostly about Mike Logan very obliquely not revealing to his father that he's a deeply closted gay (or possibly bisexual) man. There were several very positive comments and only two even mildly negative ones. But, both those readers disagreed with the portrayal of Mike Logan as anything-but-straight, which was essentially saying they didn't like what little slash there was in the story. They didn't flame, however, and made a point of praising the writing, however succinctly. This is summed up by my all-time favorite piece of feedback, received from an apocrypha reader about "Cascade": "Writing good. Innuendo bad." Still, I can understand how slash writers might feel from those comments that it wasn't a friendly place for their stories.

The most negative response to the story actually occurred outside the apocrphya venue, when another author complained on another mailing list about the number of comments "Cascade" had received in comparison to the ones their story had received. There were other stories that had gotten as many comments as "Cascade" in that issue, as well as stories from previous issues that were still getting comments, but I recall (nearly fifteen years later, so please sprinkle liberally with salt) that part of the complaint specifically mentioned that "Cascade" was a slash story, with the unwritten implication that it wasn't, perhaps, as deserving of comments because of that. But that response was definitely an outlier.[3]


  1. See to view icons.
  2. A World of Hurt Editor's Preface, Accessed October 2, 2013.
  3. added to Fanlore by User:Dmarley on October 5, 2013