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Alias(es): rivkat, Rivka T., Anubis, KittyClaws
Fandoms: The X-Files, Supernatural, Smallville, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Chuck, others
URL: http://rivkat.com/
rivkat at Archive of Our Own
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RivkaT is a long-time writer and fandom commenter.


An early self-description:

I am completely uninteresting. Really. I've never even been high (though I'm not saying I didn't inhale). I've never smoked tobacco. I average under one drink per month. This probably explains the perversity of my writing – all that rebellious energy has to go somewhere. Personal history: I went to school, did a lot of schoolwork, went to college, ditto, law school, you got it. Policy debate was my obsession, and I still maintain it's the best educational experience you can get. I clerked for a federal judge and a Supreme Court justice, and now I am an overpaid intellectual property lawyer with a wonderful husband and cat, planning on becoming a less-well-paid law professor with same. My Buddha nature is to seek clarification. I got into writing fanfic the way anyone does: a long history of telling myself "what happened next," exposure to fanzines and then the Internet, and the conclusion that I could do that at least better than average. Samuel Johnson said that no one but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money, but then again Johnson wrote diaries which is a bit of a contradiction.

My first loves were were Battlestar Galactica, Wonder Woman, Knight Rider, and the Sime/Gen series by Jacqueline Lichtenberg & later Jean Lorrah, who are also known for their Star Trek fan fiction. I never wrote those stories down, though. That waited until the X-Files. The first full episode I ever saw was Jose Chung's From Outer Space, and subsequent viewing was a quest to repeat the sublimity of that experience. I watched S8, and in retrospect I can only say that I was sitting shiva for a dear departed friend. I watched the very first episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and I was taping by episode 3, recognizing the miracle of Joss. Unlike XF, BtVS characters actually talk. The French have a phrase, I'm told, l'esprit d'escalier, the spirit of the backstairs, which means the comeback or perfect bon mot you think of after a conversation has finished. On Buffy, the characters say those things. We should all have Joss writing our dialogue.

Contrary to public expectations, I don't bite. But I do wear black on the outside because black is how I feel on the inside. (I've always wondered if Morrissey was deliberately invoking Hamlet there. I just saw yet another production of Hamlet, whose guiding idea seemed to be that Hamlet was a drama queen, which was why he chose such odd and slow methods of revenging his father. This turns out to be a consistent, justified interpretation of the text, and yet it was strangely uninteresting, to the extent that Hamlet can be uninteresting. I think it's because that interpretation is so consistent that it takes away Hamlet's mystery. Also the actor shouted a lot, which I didn't like. I would like to see a version of Hamlet played as, in part, a love triangle between Laertes, Hamlet and Horatio, with Hamlet trying to shift his desires to Ophelia as a substitute Laertes. So that's what's going on with me.) [1]

Collaboration: RivkaT and MustangSally

[MustangSally said]:

One thing, Sally is not the only one who "brings the funny". Rivka has honed some of the sharpest lines in all of our work together.

It all started one night when I was idly watching some X-Files videotapes and wondering exactly how I would feel if I were Scully - if my ova had been taken and used to create creatures without my consent. Someone once said that the X-Files was all about powerful forces using and abusing a woman's body and her reproductive rights. Hey, keep your rosaries away from my ovaries. I'll reproduce when and where I want. It's none of your business. If I were Scully, I'd be pissed. Possibly to the point of not being entirely sane. I'd have big chunks of my sanity poisoned by being violated in that way, and I'd believe that if I couldn't do what I wanted with my ova, nobody else was going to be able to.

The most toxic mother figure in Western Civilization was Medea. She murdered her own children rather than have them be declared bastards and raised as slaves by her ex-lover Jason and his new wife. So Scully became Medea. I sent an e-mail around to a few authors I knew and respected and stated that I was looking for somebody to collaborate with on a fic based on Medea. Rivka was the only one who replied. Why was I not surprised? I'd gotten wonderfully creeped out by "Shibboleth" and admired the tight way she strung her creepiness together. I also liked the cold, hard way she wrote Scully. This could work.

Oddly enough, we didn't speak on the phone until after Agnates was posted. We met even later, after reassuring each other that we were socially maladjusted middle aged men who lived in the Midwest with our mothers and had a thing about knitting while watching kiddie porn snuff movies. Well, we're none of those things, although I do, on occasion, crochet. [2]


Some Fanworks

Fan Comments

Rivka is an interesting writer. Her pieces are without exception very well written and usually have a very dark edge to them. She first came to my attention with her "Folly" series, which starts out with Scully getting a bit of a life and ends up as a complex and disturbing angst-fest. Her story "Fugue" ends with one of the more frightening character moments for Scully I've ever read. It is, however, her latest story "Acadia" that is so new it was not on Gossamer last time I checked that really sealed her place in this column. It's an X-File that deals deftly with Scully's cancer and her complex and not always cheery relationship with the punk-like one. Watch for it! [3]


  1. ^ Rivka T, unknown date, around 2001?
  2. ^ Conjoined Twins, around 2001
  3. ^ News for the OBSSEsed #8 October 1997