The it's a loooooong story thread: Support group for epic fan fic writers - poll 6/14 (red)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Writing Resource' started by spiritgurl, Aug 11, 2004.

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  1. spiritgurl Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 6, 2003
    star 4
    ATTENTION: version 2.0 of this thread now open. Go HERE

    Maybe I'm just posting this because I'm tired, or I need a hug, or both. 8-} but I notice there is no support group for writers of particularly long fan fics and I think that we are the ones who may need the most support of all to help us keep going and finish a particularly long story.

    So, that being said, anybody want to chat about the trials and tribulations of writing a long story? Or tell us about a story you're working on right now, in the future, or in the past?

    Have you finished a particularly long fan fic? If so, how long? Please post about it so that those of us in the middle of a massive, gigantic, enormous, gargantuan hunk of fan fic will know that we're not crazy and it can be done. ;)

    sg


    Epic Recommendations

    Know of an epic story you'd like to recommend to others? Looking for a really good long fan fic? Go HERE and scroll down a bit to find the Epic Recommendations listing maintained by RK_Striker_JK_5. ;)


    The 100,000 Word Club has moved! Go to the It's a loooong story index. The Club listing is at the end of the main index. ;)

    sg/>
  2. Darth_Elu Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 2, 2003
    star 6
    Well, i'm working on one right now. *sighs* sometimes it's hard to keep going, especially since you got a whole lot more to do. And I'm considering making my fic into a series which will make it even longer. Connecting to ideas that I want to write now instead of wait, but yeah. :( But anyway, yeah. Good thread idea spiritgurl! :D

    And *hugs* ;)
  3. Layren Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2003
    star 5
    Great idea for a thread! I'm supposed to be packing for my move ;) but this caught my eye and I just HAD to post before we dismantle the PC :p

    Oooooh. Been there done that got the T-Shirt :D Repercussions my big fic took over a year to complete and totaled 217 pages and 85,825 words.. does that count? It was rough especially towards the end when it seemed like we weren't getting any readers with everyone gone on holiday over the summer break. People don't like to post as much on longer stories it seems afraid an author will abandon it and leave it unfinished of which I can sympathize but that leaves those of us yearning for feedback lacking somewhat if you know what I mean.
  4. RK_Striker_JK_5 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 2, 2003
    star 7
    This is a pretty good thread, spiritgurl.

    Okay, I'll bite. My current fic, 'Three New Sailor Senshi' is over 600 pages long now. It's also nowhere near close to being finished. My readers are supportive, but extremely few.
  5. kristeh Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 24, 2003
    star 3
    I like this idea. :)

    How long is 'epic'? I've written five stories in an ongoing series and just started an unrelated one that will be pretty long, too. I'd estimate that three of my finished fics are 150-200 pages. The other two are a bit shorter.

    Personally, I love long stories, whether I'm reading or writing them. Shorter pieces can be very good, too, of course, but I adore having a longer story that I can "sink my teeth into."

    I've always complained about short stories that, just when I've gotten involved and feel like I know the characters and care about what's happening to them, then the story is over.

    On the down side, I do think some people shy away from the longer stories, maybe because they're afraid of the author abandoning it, like someone mentioned above.

    I sometimes think writing a series may put readers off, too. Although I post a short summary of "must-know" information at the beginning of each new story, I guess some readers feel they won't be able to follow it and don't have time to read from the beginning.

    But speaking just for myself, I'm delighted to find a long fanfic or series to read. It just makes my day to know I've found a bunch of good reading material! :)

    Kristeh
  6. Arin_Atona Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 10, 2004
    star 4
    Ahhh... considering my current fic (see sig) is now over the 57,000 word mark, and still in part 3 of 4... this support group sounds very inviting.

    I think my biggest frustration thus far has been the Dreaded Plot Bunny. I had to re-work a good chunk of my plotline mid-stream to accomodate a slightly different ending. I was originally posting every other day or so, but my last post took a week because of the plot change and rewrite after rewrite after rewrite of the same section. *sigh*

    I can sympathize with the lack of feedback, as long fics *are* hard to get into with the threat of an author not finishing hanging over the readers' heads. I'm just hoping seeing *Completed!* in the title one day will get them to stop in and read a while.
  7. ophelia Cards Against Humanity Host. Ex-Mod

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Jun 25, 2002
    star 6
    Thank you for starting this thread! I've needed something like this . . . we should pretend we're marathon runners and every 100 pages or so dump a bottle of virtual Gatorade over our heads or something. :p

    Allow me to present the statistics of my gaping wounds--I mean, fanfic novels:

    Last fic: 218 pages, 81,321 words, 15 months to write (including a 3 month hiatus where I helped build a plastic castle . . . now *that's* a long story too).

    Current fic (WIP): 174 pages, 77,530 words, about 9 months to write, if you don't include a couple of looong breaks in there. I'm somewhere between half and 2/3 done with the story at this point, so this 'un's going to be a record-breaker. :(

    To put my anguish into perspective, I've been trying to get myself back into excercising regularly, so I asked a friend of mine to threaten me with something awful if I didn't do it. She said that she'd force me to write a fanfic novel about her RPG character.

    I signed up for aerobics classes right quick. There's nothing, *nothing* scarier than the idea of writing another @(#*&%@!! novel.

    [image=http://members.aol.com/opheliamac/marathon77530.gif]
  8. Jemmiah Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 5, 2000
    star 5
    The Lion Sleeps Tonight: 2 years to write, 220 forum pages, epilogue still not written...

    *bangs head repeatedly off desk*

    Help! :)
  9. DCWiz00 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 29, 2004
    star 3
    I'll join this. The story I'm writing isn't that long right now, but will be long before it's done. Plus I have two sequels in mind for it so the entire story will be extremely long.

    Part if the problem I have is that I write posts every week and the story gies along as I post. The problem comes as I have a lot of background information to put in and the parts I really want to write are too far ahead for me to get to.

    I'm impatient and I came up with an idea for a story and started writing (and posting) before I had the story done. The plus side is that I get instant feedback on what I write so I can adjust the story to fit with readers viewpoints. The downside is that I get frustrated when my original idea gets skewed because I write something that works but I find it doesn't give the overall impression that I want to give.

    The biggest advice I can give to anyone that is writing a loooong story is keep at it. If you need a break from the story to come up with good ideas, take it. If you need advice, ask it. Whatever you need to finish the story then do it. Remember that it is as much for your enjoyment as it is for the people that read your story.

    And as always. Smile! :D
  10. Mjsullivan Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Dec 8, 2003
    star 3
    Hooray! This is the support group I have been waiting for. What a great idea, Spiritgurl. I love writing long fanfics, but I often find that they are disregarded by casual readers because of the long post lengths that i end up with :( But that said, I have some wonderful, dedicated readers who have stuck through thick and thin with it, and it is incredibly rewarding to see the entire story take shape overall.

    My first fic, Floating Fortress, was a mere 112 pages long, totalling 46,000 words. The sequel to that story, "Working in Darkness", is currently completed as far as chapter 4, and totals 42,800 words. And here's the clincher:

    The story has a planned 40 chapters.

    The planning file for my story is in surplus of 15 pages long! my goodness, I hope i havent bitten off more than I can chew with this one!

    Though I can assure people that this story will be completed, it's hard to get readers to believe you. Many readers find it difficult to get to a point at which they can keep up with the new posts being presented, which can be a turn off. I know, becuase i'm guilty of it myself. And the problem with long fics is, unless they are exceptionally good, you have to have chosen a topic that interests alot of people in order to get a big reader base.

    But in spite of all this, I think that the readers that I have managed to reach are well worth my effort (and with that in mind, i'd like to say a big "Hello and Thankyou!" to The_Face, _JM_ and Forcefire, who were with me at the start, and are still with me now. Top blokes all round ;) ). I am so thankful for my regular readers, and any others that read and enjoy my stuff (even if they dont reply ;))

    Great idea, Spiritgurl. It's wonderful to find others in the same situation as me!
  11. DarkDroid Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Feb 3, 2004
    star 3
    I guess this is a place where I can confess... :p

    My current (and very first) fan fiction, Dark Interventions, is 87 501 words and counting after I started writing in December 2003. It's almost done but after it is I'm writing two sequels, Destiny's Shadow and Burning Desires. And I'm undecided about writing another three. 8-}

    If I had to estimate my current fic is going to go over 100 000 words, and the sequels are going to get larger as I gain experiance in writing more thorough and longer chapters. In comparison...

    First chapter of Dark Interventions = 3 543 words...
    First chapter of Destiny's Shadow = 5 316 words and counting...

    Epic stories really do add a lot of experiance to your writing skills. And add to the insanity meter sometimes. 8-}
  12. JDH3 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 27, 2003
    star 4
    Sweet Force! Do I belong here, or do I belong here. :p I am currently working on bookend novel length fics. One set during the clone wars, and the other post-NJO.

    My clone wars fic, What I Know, has a word count in the mid seven figures, and it's far from done. My newest project, The Sith Insurrection, already has a word count of...22142! That of course includes some author notes, but you get the idea. I'm not so much worried about finishing, as I am about maintaining a high level of interest.

    Needless to say, I intend to finish both, but a support group would be most helpful. :D I enjoy complex plots, numerous locations, and more characters than you can wave a lightsaber at. But, I agree that it is, at times, hard to find and keep readers for such massive undertakings.

    I myself have been blessed with some wonderfully supportive readers for both fics- thank the Force! But attracting new readers once your chapter count really gets rolling is tricky. Anyhow, here's hoping this thread prospers, as I believe it's sorely needed.


    JD.
  13. spiritgurl Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 6, 2003
    star 4
    :eek: oooooooohhhhh...look at all the replies!

    Darth_Elu
    Well, i'm working on one right now. *sighs* sometimes it's hard to keep going, especially since you got a whole lot more to do. And I'm considering making my fic into a series which will make it even longer. Connecting to ideas that I want to write now instead of wait, but yeah. But anyway, yeah. Good thread idea spiritgurl!

    And *hugs*


    *hugs back* Yup. I know what you mean, and I take a while to do a chapter (1 to 2 weeks) and I have a feeling I lost a few readers when I took almost a month off a little while back because of a bit of writer's block. :(

    I can never seem to write SHORT. I had previously written an Angel series fan fic that was 31 chapters and took me over 6 months to write. In this current one I'm working on, the first Episode was 20 chapters and 99,152 words and took about 6 months to write. The second Episode which I am currently on month 6 and chapter 14 of is looking to be about 26 chapters when finished. *PHEW!* After this, if the story goes the way I was originally thinking it would, we're talking about 3 or 4 more 20 chapter Episodes before this sucker is finished! :-B I still love the concept for the story but it does get a little depressing sometimes when I get stuck, think I've lost readers because of writer's block or what have you (even though I do have some really wonderful loyal readers right now :*), or don't seem to be getting any new readers because of the length. :(

    Layren
    Oooooh. Been there done that got the T-Shirt Repercussions my big fic took over a year to complete and totaled 217 pages and 85,825 words.. does that count? It was rough especially towards the end when it seemed like we weren't getting any readers with everyone gone on holiday over the summer break. People don't like to post as much on longer stories it seems afraid an author will abandon it and leave it unfinished of which I can sympathize but that leaves those of us yearning for feedback lacking somewhat if you know what I mean.

    Yeah, I'd say that counts. :) Good point about summer break, people are probably not sitting down at the computer reading fan fic as much this time of year as at the beach or off on vacation. ;)

    good point also about people shying away from long stories because they think the author will abandon it. that's tough because as I mentioned, reader feedback/replies will actually help the author complete the story. Very few people have it in them to write a massively long story and not want to know people have read it.


    RK_Striker_JK_5
    This is a pretty good thread, spiritgurl.

    Okay, I'll bite. My current fic, 'Three New Sailor Senshi' is over 600 pages long now. It's also nowhere near close to being finished. My readers are supportive, but extremely few.

    We are lucky to have such a nice place to post our fics, I must say. This is by far the best fan fic board I've found for Star Wars.

    I've got a handful of loyal readers on mine too, most of whom reply to each chapter and thereby help keep me going. But, as I'm sure you'd agree, more reader are always welcome/needed. :D

    kristeh
    I like this idea.

    How long is 'epic'? I've written five stories in an ongoing series and just started an unrelated one that will be pretty long, too. I'd estimate that three of my finished fics are 150-200 pages. The other two are a bit shorter.


    if it's all part of an ongoing series then I'd say that counts. ;)

    I've always complained about short stories that, just when I've gotten involved and feel like I know the characters and care about what's happening to them, then the story is over.

    I think I have trouble keeping things short when I write because when I think of plot and character development, I usually think of things that take some time to develop and it's VERY har
  14. jacen200015 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 11, 2002
    star 4
    Ok lets see. I started Jedi Uprising in 2/12/02 and now completed is 59 pages long and on 5/5/03. It was slow going at first and in the beginning there were a couple of months without posts. The next episode The Rising Tempest was started on 5/6/03, had a few months pause and was finished on 7/28/04 with a total of 88 pages.

    I am planning a total of seven episodes although since it was going to be 6 originally It could be even longer then that.

    I suspect the further I go in the series, the longer each episode will get. I mean really, 59 and 88 pages (on word) are a big difference. :)
  15. Spike2002 Former FF-UK RSA and Arena Manager

    Member Since:
    Feb 4, 2002
    star 6
    Oh man. Long stories is definitely where I belong. I'm at page 198 of my fic, having done 75'000 words or so, and I'm barely into the third quarter of the story.

  16. kayladie97 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 6, 2003
    star 4
    Oh, yeah, I think I belong in here too! Sleight of Hand, which I started somewhere around May or June of 2003 (I can't remember exactly when I started writing it cause I didn't start posting it for a while), is currently at 17 chapters and almost 58,000 words.

    And I figure I'm probably a little past the halfway mark. The thing is, it gets so discouraging because I'm having trouble seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. I KNOW what is going to happen a little further ahead in the story, but I'm having a hard time getting there. Right now, I just feel like I've already been writing it forever and I'll be writing it for the rest of my life! :(

    We need to holler at Jedi-2B to give some inspiration to those of us who are feeling bogged down...she just finished her epic Journey of Discovery series and I am so envious! :p
  17. TheBothanJedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2004
    star 2
    I am in the middle of writing a book lenth fic myself. I'm not sure what possessed me to do this, but now that the idea is in my head I can't get it out. So eventually - if I don't give up first - you'll be enjoying the adventures of Paladin Squadron. However this is currently a major league fic in progress and I have no clue if or when it'll get done.
  18. DarthIshtar Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 9
    I'm not sure I qualify for "epic," but I have a 400-page trilogy on the Archives, my last fic (Lest Ye Be Judged) was a 250-page monstrosity that covered a year, a war crimes trial, and a romance. And I've got a severe plot bunny that promises to be a massive fic.
  19. ThePariah Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2003
    star 4
    *staggers into thread*

    Ugh, I'm feeling the burn on this one now too. My current fic Love Thy Enemy is barely getting into Chapter 2 and is already 15,816 words and 24 pages long. :eek: But it's the length combined with the excruciating complexity that's starting to kill me already. I'm having a serious case of the WHAT THE FRICK DID I GET MYSELF INTOs?! :_| :_| :_|

    And what's worse is letting my readers down again and again. :( I started posting in February and had to take a month-long hiatus around April because school was too much to cope with. I thought summer would cut me loose and have me posting up a storm...but I forgot that summer+teenagehood=major lazies. I think I've hardly posted more than three times since June.

    I don't have writer's block per se, I just have a sort of paralysis due to boredom and impatience in wanting to get to the exciting parts and not being able to yet. Add this to the overwhelming sense I get as each part becomes more and more of a psychological labyrinth so that it's getting hard to not confuse myself or overlook details, and I need a panic button. [face_worried] I'm already in the second draft of a long piece and have no idea how I'm going to salvage it.

    This thing is going to be long and scary...and I think I need a hug too. :_|
  20. DarthIshtar Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 9
    ::Heads over to her padawan's corner and hugs her, stroking her hair.:: Poor Padawan, poor Padawan, we love you anyway. And the best things are worth waiting for. As for the length, yeah, I know what you mean.
  21. ThePariah Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2003
    star 4
    *sniffle* Thanks, Ish. [:D] [:D] [:D]
  22. MerryWLukefan Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 10, 2004
    star 1
    I'm starting a really long story.
  23. dianethx Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 1, 2002
    star 6
    Okay, I'll weigh in here. My longest fic is currently at 150 pages (edit: 93,000 words) and I figure it will be another 100 before it's done. I started it March of 2003 with every intention of finishing it by Sept.... 2003. ARGGGGHHHH. It was a sequel to a very short (7 page) fic that people kept hounding me to write. So I thought, okay it would be longer maybe 50 pages or so and a bit more complex but it should be easy and quick to write. Sure, no problem. Yeah, right....

    Problem is that I'm not comfortable writing longer fics. I'm happiest writing maybe 10-15 pages at most. So it's killing me to write something that long but the plot demands complexity and characters that like to take over so here I am.

    However, I must say that my readers have been extremely supportive; I get long replies and they post as soon as my fic update is up. Almost scary.... So I'll get 10-20 replies and then the fic sinks until the next time I post.

    So, since we're all here, do you ever feel guilty that you haven't posted often or soon enough? I do... a lot. And those darn plot bunnies keep cropping up, demanding their own stories. So I put off working on the larger one, thinking that if I just finish the smaller story, then I can work on the larger one... yeah, right.

    And so it goes... :(
  24. MerryWLukefan Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 10, 2004
    star 1
    Yeah, I've seen that happen a lot.
  25. kristeh Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 24, 2003
    star 3
    *Hugs to everyone* :)

    It can be really tough to stay motivated, especially when you've got other stuff going on in RL. But I guess we all already know that, huh?

    For me, it helps to have a goal-say, posting a chapter each week. but I've always been the type who works better with some kind of a deadline. If I only wrote when I wanted/had time/felt inspired, etc., I'd never get anything done. :p

    Kristeh
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