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From the Comfort of their Favorite Armchair
  October 26, 2001

Today's Featured Author - Farah Daye

by: Kelly Ann Rogers

Farah Daye, who unfortunately hasn’t written anything recently, has nonetheless left behind a charming set of four short stories, each of which is a little gem. Farah’s world is sweet and tender, sometimes infused with magic, and always utterly and delightfully feminine. Indeed, Farah instills her characters with a palpable sense of joy in being feminine. They revel in it. They exult in it, and they share it with you in a most generous way.

The "Imitation Wife" has long been one of my favorites. It’s the story of a young male nursing student who, as a joke, dresses as a female nurse during a school ceremony. This lands him in hot water, but the ‘kindly’ school administrator offers a way out.

"Just act as my wife for a few days," he offers.

"You bet," replies, your heroine, barely able to hide her glee.

And the story goes from there. Of course our girl adores what happens to her, and we adore it along with her as she drifts to the end of the story, which allows her to discover what being a wife really means, in a dreamy, almost trance-like state of pleasure. It’s easy to imagine this is how an adoring new bride feels once she has gotten home for the first time with her new husband. There’s an interesting twist at the end, but when it’s over, all you can say is Oh no, that can’t be the end. I want more.

In "Stress Response", we meet a husband with a strange reaction to stress; he turns into a woman (this is TG fiction right?). The lovely wife is enchanted and soon comes to see possible advantages in this and has him substitute for her at her job when she occasionally needs to be elsewhere. Of course he adores it, and of course he takes up with her lovers, and of course..., well you’ll just have to read it. The most wonderful part of this story, however is not the narrative, which is just fine, but it is the way Farah inhabits her occasionally female main character. She is sensual, deliriously happy with the femininity of the experience, and almost euphoric in her love of being a woman. Enjoy the ride.

Another of my favorites is "The Willow Tree", a love story. Two star-crossed, adulterous lovers end up trapped in each other’s bodies as the result of an unlucky lightning strike. Worse, though they love each other dearly, they are both stuck in unhappy marriages and seem doomed to live each other’s joyless lives, especially when her circle of witches steps in and forbids them from seeing each other. But love will triumph over adversity, and with the help of... Well, I told you, it’s a love story.

Did you ever get one of those small boxes of Godiva chocolates? You know, a small number of absolutely rich and heavenly truffles, fudges, and fruit-filled chocolate candies. Farah’s fourth piece is one of those. It contains a set of seven little vignettes. None of these are long, but all are touchingly sweet, and are written with a wonderful sense of poignant innocence. If they were photographs, they would have been taken at the end of the day, when the golden red glow of the sun makes everything look better. They would be framed with flowers, handled with fond nostalgia, and viewed with contented sighs. You’ll probably read them that way too.

Farah has not written much, but what she has written is a real romantic gift to her readers. There’s nothing harsh in her stories; they are all soft and innocent and sweet. What distinguishes them is the utterly feminine feel that infuses them and the enchanting joy the characters express about being feminine. These are not stories about sissies, sluts, or whores, they are about someone’s sweetheart, who is seen from a distance wearing a flowing, lacy dress, and resting languorously in a sunny garden. Go, join her. It will be a delightful interlude for you.

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by: Sydney Michelle

When an author chooses a nom de plume as imaginative as Farah’s play on words, the read begins with great hopes of literacy and ingenuity. Farah does not disappoint.

Her writing makes for a very easy read without being boringly limited in structure.

Beginning writers please copy: Read her stories, preferably aloud, to develop your sense of pace, rhythm, and description. When Farah reuses her story elements, the sinking feeling of "here we go again" is definitely missing. Her stories are inspired by some of the best sources, with her development deserving high marks.

When it comes to the inevitable intercourse, Farah belongs to the "less is more" school of description. If your interest is full bore descriptions, Farah’s work won’t be for you, but if you find the dance more exciting than the aftermath, then her work will provide a more than adequate springboard for your imagination.

Farah has posted three short stories and a collection of vignettes, characters and situations that might be expanded into future stories. The short stories are long enough for decent character exposition and lots of well done description. The plot devices are sufficiently explained to ease the necessary willing suspension of disbelief.

In "Stress Reaction," a psychological affliction comes with a convenient, for the writer, physical side effect. A wish hidden, a dream fulfilled, and a loving woman who will conveniently pass on without hurt. What more could a fantasy offer?

In "Willow Tree," the change blends life after death and body snatching into a surprising yarn of magic, hidden forces, and soul mates. This one gets a bit muddy in deciphering who is what at times, but with so many characters having so multiple identities, that goes with the territory. Rest assured, the bad guys get theirs, and life happily ever after ensues.

In "Imitation Wife," a prank and opportunity leads to wish fulfillment. Two themes combine, as though the writer were searching for an audience, much as the where do we go from here? questions at the end suggested. The wish fulfillment aspect really doesn’t gee with the tricked and betrayed theme, detracting somewhat from the ending. It’s still a good read, just not the best.

The final submission contains seven scraps of work, some character developments, some plot skeletons. The works are not fully developed, but Farah’s writing style rarely flags. The first exercises description to the max, the love of women, of the possibility of being a woman, coming through loud and clear. The second concentrates on plot at the expense of character, a situation of bad males leading to disguise, socialization, and unprotested physical conversion. The third provides voyeuristic descriptive exercise, a fragment that could be developed many ways. The fourth returns to description from the changelings point of view. The final three are a bit longer, a theme and variations on the lucrative safe harbor of life as a club performer. The lite motif is the desire for connections, of life beyond the solitary.

If one had to pick a theme for Farah’s work, it would be Anticipation, competently performed with flair.

Editor - Heather Sinclair

 

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