This post contains spoilers for Life is Strange.
Artwork by the fabulous @starsonherwheels.
It was almost immediately after I finished my first playthrough of Life is Strange that I started writing fanfic based on the game. When the first few paragraphs seemed like they were actually from two different stories (neither of which was the one I was planning to write in the first place) I realised that I had the beginnings of a series on my hands. It was a few days later, while listening to one of my favourite albums, Echo Park by Feeder, that I found my template. It has a track entitled We Can't Rewind, for crying out loud, and another with the lyric ‘I wish that I could turn the clocks right back’ – a perfect fit for Max’s time-travelling adventures.
Then, came the process of putting it all together. I have the Japanese import version of the album (the only one to have all the songs featured in Gran Turismo 3, which is where I came across them), so that meant sixteen stories to write. In some cases, the track’s title or lyrics actually inspired a story; for others they matched up nicely with an idea I already had floating around. For a few... well, any connection between story and song is tenuous at best. A few months later, I have a novel’s worth of words, and more than a dozen stories in various states of completion.
Of course, if it wasn’t for International Fanworks Day, it's entirely possible that none of this would ever have been read by anyone other than me; I was mostly writing them for my own amusement, after all. But now... I’ve started, so I’ll finish, as Magnus Magnusson used to say. Below is the track list, with a brief summary of each story and their current state of progress. I'll try and remember to update this periodically (or at least each time I post a new fic.) You can also check out the anthology on AO3.
- Standing on the Edge (posted) Largely a character piece focussed on Max post the sacrifice Chloe ending.
- Buck Rogers (posted) A Kate/Max story set a few years after the game. Sacrificing Chloe didn't stop the storm, and now Max is trying to atone by using her powers as the ‘Portland Ninja’. Begins a spin-off series.
- Piece By Piece (posting chapters) Post-save-the-bay, Max/Dana.
- Seven Days in the Sun (posted) In a world where Jefferson never went to Blackwell, and Chloe and Rachel are rock stars, it's almost ten years after they're separated before Chloe finally gets back in touch with Max.
- We Can’t Rewind (posted) Three years after the storm destroyed Arcadia Bay, Max and Chloe are still trying to come to terms with the tragedy.
- Turn (posted) Unable to live with sacrificing Chloe, Max tries to go back and fix things, but it doesn't turn out quite the way she planned.
- Choke (posted) When Victoria discovers that Chloe has been doing nude modeling, she selflessly offers her services as a less flustered photographer than Max for the next photoshoot.
- Oxygen (posted) In the timeline where William is alive but Chloe is dying, Max has to try and rebuild her oldest friendship while navigating a new relationship with Victoria. Begins the ‘Chemistry’ spin-off series.
- Tell All Your Friends (posted) When Victoria finally has to confront the truth about who she is, it's Kate who's there to help her put herself back together.
- Under the Weather (in progress) Unwilling to either help Chloe die or leave her behind, Max chooses to stay with her to the end.
- Satellite News (posted) If Chloe is unwilling to sacrifice the town, and Max is unwilling to sacrifice Chloe, there's only one possible sacrifice left to make.
- Bug (posted) Both Kate and Victoria were disowned when they came out to their families, but while Victoria had an apartment and a trust fund, Kate had nothing and nowhere.
- Just a Day (posted) After sacrificing Chloe, Max has gone off the deep end. It's up to Kate to try and bring her back.
- Purple (posted) It's Halloween, and the girls are all fans of RWBY – time for some cosplay!
- Heads (posted) MCU crossover – the SHIELD team have come to investigate a temporal anomaly in coastal Oregon.
- 21st Century Meltdown (posted) When Kate wants an indelible reminder of what she's been through, Chloe is the obvious person to turn to.
This post's image comes from the album cover for Echo Park by Feeder.