Sparky's Doghouse

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Recommendation Website
Name: Sparky's Doghouse
Reccer(s): Sparky
Dates:
Focus:
Fandom: The X-Files
URL: defunct, a Wayback link to an undated page

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Sparky's Doghouse was a popular recommendation site for new X-Files fanfic, that was updated weekly. It had recs for all kinds of genres and pairings.

Often the authors of the recced stories would advertise with the rec on their sites.[1]

Intro from the Website

Who am I to say what's right?

Good question. I've been reading fanfic since the days of the dinosaur: Vincent's Archive, for those of you who remember that wonderful site. Which means at least THREE years. Egads! Since then I've seen a lot of great fanfic, a lot of bad fanfic, and most of it somewhere in between. Since I have yet to stumble upon a reliable, high-quality, regularly updated recommendation site, I thought "why not do it myself?"

What will you find here?

A little bit of everything. This site has been officially declared friendly for shippers, noromos, slashers, folks devoted to secondary characters, case-file lovers, and introspective-angst fiends. (Also, please note that many stories here are NC-17, so don't read those if you're not supposed to!) One request, though, please? Send authors FEEDBACK! They need love, or they'll quit entertaining us!

How do stories get here?

I'm sorry to say this site does not accept direct submissions. All the stories recommended here have been publicly posted to the Internet -- either on newsgroups, mailing lists, or on authors' homepages. All stories for the current week were posted the week prior (Sunday through Saturday). This site is merely a glorified sieve for everything recently posted to public forums. In addition, I maintain the right to screw up now and again and recommend a story a bit late if I missed it on the first go-round! [2]

Images

Fan Comments

2008

In a discussion on a TWoP X-Files forum in 2008, a few fans reminisced about the site:

bcfan: I credit Sparky's Doghouse for putting my formerly wholesale and indiscriminate reading in perspective. There were recommendations, and standards, and categories - why, just like RL literature critiques. And the choices Sparky made were solid. So solid that I've saved all her recommendations through Wayback (though the links seldom work) and still dip into her list on occasion.[3]
Dasha: It's really fun to go into the Wayback and read her recs. Sparky had great taste in fic and, probably more importantly, she had really diverse taste. She got me into all sorts of genres I probably wouldn't have read if she hadn't pointed me in those directions. I'm having the best time looking through the disk of her old recs and finding some old favorites. I may post some recs from it on my LJ when I get a chance.[3]

2012

From Fan Fiction Oral History Project with Nightflier:

There was a rec site in the X-Files fandom called Sparky's Doghouse that was—Even if I didn't love everything on there, it was such a service. It was such a fan service and I miss it every day, you know? Sparky's Doghouse would update, I think, every Friday or it updated once a week, I think. I just would never have read those stories—some of those stories. I don't know who the ... Maybe they were named Sparky, but I don't know who the fan was that ran the Doghouse, but that fan made sure to list exemplars in every category. Every genre, every rating class. So her list of recommendations every week were very diverse, and her write-ups of each story were really compelling. I mean, she did a good job of selling you on why she was recommending this. And she would even say, "You know what, I'm not big into this, like I don't love this—I don't love AU or I don't really read a lot of this kind of this rating of fic, but let me tell you why I included this one." And it was really special, and I would get into the stories because of that. When that closed down, you know, terrible. It felt like my heart was dropping out of me, like Oh, no more of that. It was like your favorite show got canceled... I think it was around 2001? Maybe? I think the show ended around 2002. I think maybe the Doghouse might've closed before then. But I remember finding it, you know? I remember the joy, the thrill of finding the Doghouse, like "What an amazingly great and wonderful thing this fan has done—is doing for us."

References

  1. For example, Livia's Ink Spot, accessed May 29, 2009; Mish's Stories, accessed May 29,2009.
  2. Sparky's Doghouse
  3. 3.0 3.1 TWoP forum thread, July 10-11, 2008. Accessed May 29, 2009.