Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Writing Resource' started by Luna_Nightshade, Nov 24, 2011.
So I noticed. You were OCDing all over my fanfic.
No, no. Some of that was just me being...inquisitive. I love seeing how other people view the Jedi Order and Sacrifices is the first story I've read in a while that even tried to tackle what the Jedi's role in society is.
This is going to be more of a spew of writer's thoughts/feelings, but there are legitimate questions at the end, I promise.
To those of you who wrote fan fic in the past, took a hiatus, and then returned to it:
I've been on a decently long hiatus from fan fic (not from writing) - the last time I was regularly writing it was in 2011. What are some struggles you have faced getting back into it? I feel inspired to write fan fic, something which I haven't felt for a long time, and the feeling is so foreign that I'm almost afraid that whatever runs my inspiration is tricking me and that I'm running on random plot bunnies that are going to wither and die once I actually get started. One of my main reasons of considering writing fan fic again is that I have some unfinished business with an abandoned fic of mine. I stopped writing it about three years ago and ever since then, I've still had people asking me whether I'm ever going to continue writing it. The messages of support from these readers who knew I was suffering from severe writer's block on the story were fantastic, but they weren't enough to inspire me and I couldn't figure out for the life of me why the story I was once so passionate about telling and sharing was just frustrating me.
I've finally figured out where the writer's block is stemming from: it comes down to drastic changes in my life, my personal philosophies and world view that have occurred over the past few years (university does that to a person ). Because I am a very different person now than I was when I started writing the story in question, I can't bring myself to finish it because I have issues with the way I developed the characters and the plotline (also the currently outline shows that I have 44 more chapters to write and it's a bit daunting. Goodness, past me was ambitious ).
I have three options: either continue writing and try to amend the original story as best I can in the new chapters, go back and edit like mad and update the edited chapters, or completely re-work the story from the ground up. I'm personally most attracted to the last idea because I know I will be able to lead the story where I want it from the beginning, instead of spending months editing and re-updating (which could confuse readers, considering how long the story's been available online), and I will be able to tackle the characters how the current me wants into, instead of the past me. I guess what I'm afraid of is that if I do re-work it from the ground up, past readers are going to be disappointed with the new material because it won't be the story they wanted to see finished. Now, I am of the "I write what I want, when I want" variety, but I do like keeping a healthy relationship with my readers open and I've been promising for years that if I ever return to this particular story, I'm going to finish it.
I know in the end, I'll write what I feel is best for me (because writing doesn't happen otherwise if I'm not satisfied with my approach). Thoughts? Have you returned to an abandoned fic years after halting work on it? How did that go?
I started Beyond Memories around late 2006 and stopped writing it in 2007. I think it was 2011 when I started writing again. I hadn't started posting it when I took a break...so I had that going for me. I did have a reader asked if I wrote the first part at a different time because the writing style shifted.
@Idrelle_Miocovani: It sounds to me like the best choice for you at this time is to rework it from the ground up. I'm facing something similar with one of my long and truncated stories: I'm not in the same mindset as when I started it and I haven't written in over a year. It would be better for the readers, I think, if I could get back into the old mindset and figure out the missing crap and find the muse, considering how close I am to the end - but it would be a different story if I just threw it out and wrote it "right."
It is almost impossible to "fix" something that feels so "no longer right.' IMHO.
Write it the way that makes it rewarding for you. Personally, I lean on the side of only writing the stories you're passionate about since I tend to write veeeery slowly compared to the people who produce whole novels for NaNoWriMo. If a serious revamp is needed to make it something you're excited to work with, then that's probably the best. And if you try for a reasonable amount of time and it seems like it can't be saved, then you can always cannibalize it for parts and use them in other works that do inspire you now. Though I hate to suggest that if it's the story of yours that I was reading a few years ago on FFnet...still, it's the Circle of Life.
If you're referring to me, its EJC on ff.n although I think I know what story Idrelle is referring to. I have more than one issue besides a missing muse: I don't like how I've written and I have no clue how to continue a certain character, I've screwed up my journey with side paths and forays, and the plot, such as it is, is all over the place.
I don't have a missing muse, just the side paths and forays... and the fact that I was tunnel-visioned so badly that I wasn't writing ahead and instead was focused on "the present" and the problem at hand. That problem solved, so yay, but it's getting back to the original intent that's the hard part.
Edit... and this was totally the middle of thought-process. Hee.
My muse ran away. I haven't touched my diary in far too long.
So, I have this new 'fic I'm doing, in a completely new fandom, and I'm finding that I can't write a summary for this worth squat. Sometimes I have no problem writing summaries (The back copy for my novel? Wrote it in, like, two minutes.), but at others, I can't boil a concept down to a sentence or two. Any tips? How do you guys write yours?
If I get really stumped I put down something like: "Luke and Mara get caught up in a strange situation that might lead to... (death, the darkside, a lot of bootknocking).
I came up with one about five minutes after I posted this, but the question still stands, because it's an ongoing problem for me. Heh.
I find that I can always write a summary by just saying what happens in the first scene and then end it with something like "... and then mayhem ensues" or " ... they learned a valuable lesson" or something else similarly vague.
Something I was just wondering on:
What do you guys feel is "too soon" to post another update? Say you have most or all of a 'fic written. How often do you update, given you have the next part done already?
Personally, as a reader, I like at least 3 or 4 days, prefer around a week. Of course I want to know what's going to happen, but I also like to respond to each section before the next and I can't always read it right away.
As a writer I pretty much follow that since it's what I like... though usually this is not a problem for me seeing as how I usually don't have that much already written.
3 or 4 days
See, my problem is a lack of patience and self-control. If it's done, I want it posted now. This is one of the reasons I can plow through a whole series of books, 7 or more, in a weekend. (Doesn't help I'm an absurdly fast reader.)
So when I have a 'fic ready to go, sometimes I have the urge to just . . . post and post until I have no more updates ready. (I've written almost 20k words on my newest piece in the last week. I'm a little manic about the whole thing.)
Give it three or four days to allow the reader time to read it. I found that I sometimes lose interest in a story if I go back to it and I missed three posts and now I am faced with reading 8000 words to catch up.
You've seen some writers that post a 20 chapter story in three or four days and they may have one person comment. I think it overwhelms a reader who only has time to read something short during their lunch break. I think posting everyday can lose people who only check TFN every few days.
I feel you on the wanting to post something right away... I'm that way too when I have something done, but I think most people benefit from waiting at least a few days.
This is my feelings exactly.
I have noticed that stories that are posted all at once, or have really long chapters see a lot of hits but not many comments and I think it's because people see how long it is and just don't have the time/want to read something that long.
I am now writing shorter (sometimes very short) chapters and try to post no more than twice a week.
Is it possible to write Jacen/Mara fanfic with reasonable plot?
@Slowpokeking. What exactly do you mean by that? A romance?
Not necessary romance, it's like some AU story, Jacen has lust on his aunt and try to drag Mara into the Dark Side with him.
I don't see why it couldn't be done, as long as it kept to the TOS of the site.
It is possible but who is your target audience? L/M shippers probably won't read it. Jacen fans probably won't like the plot. Some people might think it is incestuous...although its not really. But it is possible to write a good story.
I once wrote an Anakin/Mara story. Not that it was good.