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Discussion Fanfics you read you wish were completed or a sequel

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Writing Resource' started by SatineNaberrie, Nov 12, 2014.

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  1. SatineNaberrie

    SatineNaberrie Jedi Master star 4

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    Jan 28, 2014
    How many people have read stories on sites that you really like but they were not finished and it looked as if the author hasn't written in years or they leave something with lose ends that should have a sequel?

    I like some of Mj Minks stuff but it looks as if they hadn't written in years. There are other author's to that I have read from that hadn't updated in years. Ever wonder why they don't?

    How much do you think reviews play a role in whether or not people continue writting?
     
  2. Cushing's Admirer

    Cushing's Admirer Force Ghost star 7

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    Jun 8, 2006
    For some that is why they quit. Sometimes they burnout, lose interest, or life happens. I'd like to know if Gia ever finished her Tarkin series even though I don't much care for her read on him.
     
  3. JediMaster_Jen

    JediMaster_Jen Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jun 3, 2002
    I think we've probably all read stories that were abandoned and never finished or stories that were just begging for a sequel that never happened. As for why, I'm sure there are lots of reasons. Do reviews play a role? I would hope not. Some people will like the work and others will not. There are just too many people reading for that not to be the case. I would hate to think someone stopped writing due to, either bad reviews or not as many reviews as they'd hoped to get.
     
  4. thedarkbeckons

    thedarkbeckons Jedi Knight star 1

    Registered:
    Dec 2, 2013
    I'm still pretty new to the fanfiction scene, but one story I read was quite literally the most hilarious piece of Star Wars fiction I have ever seen. It was actually finished, and I kind of hope there is a sequel someday, but I don't think the author has done anything in quite a few years. It's called "Not the Best Babysitters" and was written by Daughter of Yubyub. It shows the entirety of both Rogue and Wraith Squadrons trying to babysit the Solo kids and failing miserably. It's a fairly short read, so if any of you have about a half-hour, I think you can totally find it over at the old TF.N Fanfic site: fanfic.theforce.net

    Not sure why she ever quit, as she wrote her last fic when I was ten, as far as I can tell. I know personally, if I ever quit, it would be because I'm not finding enough time to work on my actual projects, let alone write for fun.... I would say a LACK of reviews would be far more likely to cause someone to quit than BAD reviews. I mean, theoretically you can always improve your writing, and even intense criticism can help you build better things later on. A lack of reviews might actually cause someone to think that no one is reading at all, and the logical end to that is the question "Why am I even doing this?" For fun, obviously, but writers hang a lot of hope on their writing being able to influence people and so if their influence is negligible, they feel purposeless. I personally fall prey to this quite a lot. The psychology of writing and storytelling is a quite interesting topic to study, from either side of the coin.
     
  5. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host Who Loves Fanfics & RPGs star 7 VIP - Game Host

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    Aug 31, 2004
    SatineNaberrie - what a great topic. I hope it's not the content of reviews, or the paucity of reviewers. :eek: :( I even appreciate reviews that say "I've been busy but still am reading and enjoying." :D That's why I like the Like feature so an author can tell the lurkers out there. ;)

    What mystifies me to no end is the author's note that says something in the vein of "I've written the next few chapters of this story and am ready to start posting regularly." Then, huh? Nothing. Then you as a reder bump the thread and tag, and still - huh? Where'd they go? :confused:
     
  6. Cushing's Admirer

    Cushing's Admirer Force Ghost star 7

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    Jun 8, 2006
    I'm not saying reviews should factor in but I know they do for some. Can't even count how many times I've seen fics held hostage for reviews.
     
  7. Briannakin

    Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic & Costuming/Props Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    Let's try to avoid mentioning specific fics and authors, but great discussion.

    I think MOST people stop writing something simply because they lose personal interest in it. Plenty of people leave the fandom simply because they've moved onto another fandom or want to try their hand at original fiction. It boils down to "hey, I don't like this story any more, why spent time on something I don't like." For others I know Darth Real Life gets in the way of writing, possibly permanently. That's just life.

    I do think comments (or lack there of) does play a small role for some people. Positive reinforcement in the form of comments does help curb self-doubt a lot. Comments are nice. If you don't get comments, you get the feeling that no one likes your writing and it sucks. It can kill your motivation to work on a story.

    As for fics being held hostage for reviews, while I don't agree with it, I understand the rational behind it. On FF.n you can 'follow'/'favourite' a story, and it can be incredibly annoying when you have a ton of followers who aren't giving you a two second comment for all your work (how hard is it to go "good chapter, I liked XYZ part"?). While it isn't a huge problem here, the Like button can also prevent people from feeling like they HAVE TO review.
     
  8. jackyyy17

    jackyyy17 Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 12, 2006
    Speaking as one of these authors that has a fanfic that hasn't been updated since probably 2006 [face_blush] I can say that for me DRL happened and I kind of stepped away form these forms and now that I am back I just cannot seam to get into writing anymore. I want desperately to finish my story (and I'm so close to being done) but every time I try to go back and reread my story so I can remember what is going on I end up changing something in every chapter and give up before I even make it to the last chapter that I posted. I really feel bad but that is the reality of my situation. For me it never had anything to do with reviews or anything like that. If I ever finish thought, I want to finish everything before I start posting on the site. That way I know I will at least be able to finish before I give up again and wait another 8 years to post again (Has it really been 8 years. :oops:)
     
  9. mavjade

    mavjade It's so FLUFFY! Fanfic Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Sep 10, 2005
    Do my eyes deceive me??! jackyyy17 !! :D [:D] [:D] Welcome back!!

    But on the topic, Personally, while I hate leaving something unfinished it usually comes down to either my muse goes away on something or I write myself into a plot hole that I can't find my way out. And since I hate it when I'm reading a really good fic and it's been abandoned, I've made a promise to myself to not start posting a longer fic until it's at least had a first draft. This does have some problems though... reviews can help you figure out a way to go and encourage you to finish. It's not about the reviews, but they do help with motivation.

    I hate it when people hold chapters hostage for review, that makes me not want to review at all.
     
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  10. skygawker

    skygawker Jedi Knight star 3

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    May 25, 2014
    Seeing someone hold chapters hostage for reviews makes me way less likely to actually review it.

    I've so far never led a fic unfinished, but I can understand why it happens - people get distracted by real life, or lose interest in the fandom, etc.
     
  11. Jedi_Lover

    Jedi_Lover Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Nov 1, 2004
    My favorite fic that I wrote was taken from RedGold. She wrote two chapters and then lost interest. After it languished for five years I asked her if I could have it. I took it and now have four sequels. Sometimes it is worth asking a writer if they abandoned the story and if you (or somebody else) could finished the story.

    As for reviews...it does help to get feedback. I have some stories involving OC and unfamiliar Legends characters that get few reviews. I haven't stopped writing, but I slowed down because I know I don't have people waiting for an update. I have never held a chapter hostage. I think that is childish. I once left a fic unfinished for five years before starting it up again. Fortunately I hadn't started posting it before my muse left. Only my beta knew I had abandoned it. When I started writing again some reviewer asked me if I had stopped and started again because there appears to be a difference in my writing style about five chapters in. lol! That was pretty observant.
     
  12. Chyntuck

    Chyntuck Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 11, 2014
    I also think that most people stop writing because hey, life happens. You move on to something else, you have other things to do, you get a bout of writer's block that lasts for so long that you just lose track...

    I agree that reviews and comments are great for motivation, and on an electronic medium like here or FFN you also have a clue as to the number of views on your story. I'm really bad at reviewing, so I'd be the last person to complain about lack of reviews, but one thing I find great on the Internet is that I have an indication that people are at least having a look. When you publish in print it's an entirely different world where the writer is isolated from the readers, and I find it much more difficult to discipline myself to write in that context.

    I liked JL's idea of asking to continue someone else's story. We should be doing that kind of thing more often (as long as the original writer agrees to it of course.) It would make for a richer fandom.
     
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  13. mavjade

    mavjade It's so FLUFFY! Fanfic Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

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    Sep 10, 2005
    I've seen the asking a writer for permission to continue a story happen a lot in other fandoms, but not as much in this one, or at least not that I've noticed. But I've also seen a lot more of people asking permission to write a companion piece or a sequel than I have here, I'm not exactly sure why that is.
     
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  14. Jedi_Lover

    Jedi_Lover Force Ghost star 5

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    Nov 1, 2004
    I seen people ask ginchy for a shiny missing chapter.
     
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  15. mavjade

    mavjade It's so FLUFFY! Fanfic Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Sep 10, 2005
    I meant author A writing a story and then author B asking to write a companion piece a sequel or a continuation, not people asking the author themselves to write more... that happens all the time. :)

    Example, in the House fandom an author wrote a short story that has since spawned basically an entire AU universe with at least 4 or 5 novel length stories by different authors and a whole host of short stories by many authors.

    I know it happens here, just not to the extent I've seen it in other fandoms.
     
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  16. Viridian-Maiden

    Viridian-Maiden Jedi Knight star 1

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    Aug 14, 2013
    Well, as someone who's been promising certain people (including myself) that I would get on to really regularly updating, I think there are a lot of reasons. I wish I could say I don't care about reviews. But I do. I'd rather have a bad review though than none at all - especially because if the reviewer starts arguing "I think this was out of character" or things like that, at least you know they're paying attention. In another fandom I recently abandoned (and even took down) a story I was really personally invested in because I was getting lots of reads in such a way that I knew people were continuing through the whole story (i.e. they were reading through 50,000 words, not just dropping off after the first chapter) and nobody once said anything. Logically that should have been enough to tell me people were enjoying the story, but it somehow wasn't. I don't get it. I hate holding stories hostage for reviews, so I didn't do that but I posted a very raw A/N just asking people to let me know they were there and people read that and still didn't comment either. Baffling.

    Other than that, I feel like it can be hard to get into certain character's mindsets after longer periods of time. You sortof have to sit down and say...Ok...where is this person again? Maybe they're not where you thought they were. Maybe they're still where you thought they were but you're somewhere else. I find the relationship between authors and their own characters so interesting - one of the joys of writing and often surprising. But it can also be frustrating if you feel like you can't find their voice. Maybe they were, like Charles Dickens once described, literally there begging you to tell their story at one point but at a later point when you can actually sit down to do it you find they've inexplicably gone.

    I've also made one mistake which I don't think I will make again, and that is to write any scene that came into my mind rather than working all the way through. When I've written other fics it has turned out much better to work from start to finish, often keeping those scenes I know have to happen in mind but unwritten until I get to their place in the story. That way I have something driving me forward, rather than having a lot of great stuff written but having to fill in the holes. This is just my experience, though. I expect we all work differently. It's incredibly hard to have to go back over everything and fill in large pieces of missing plot.
     
  17. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Game Host Who Loves Fanfics & RPGs star 7 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    @Viridan-Maiden - what a succinct and very insightful explanation. Losing the character's "voice" or losing the momentum of writing such that you always feel stuck :( or perhaps in many instances, the fandom or writing in general doesn't seem as fulfilling emotionally.

    [face_thinking]
     
  18. Cael-Fenton

    Cael-Fenton Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Jun 22, 2006
    I don't think lack of reviews would ever be the sole reason people stop writing a particular story or fandom for good. I mean, of course it's great motivation to know that people are actually reading and keen for you to update. But if you really have a story that wants to be told, lack of indication that anyone is listening wouldn't be enough, by itself, to make you give up on it, IMO.

    (If it is, maybe the desire to write wasn't really the main motivation...? That's why I tend to stop reading stories that are held hostage for reviews. Of course reviews are great and it can be a bit disheartening to pour months of sweat and tears into a story and be greeted with *crickets*. But rightly or wrongly, I usually take hostage-holding as an indication that the writer is writing more to get reviews than from the heart, ie because they have this story which they believe in so strongly that it's got to be shared whether people read it or not. And if the writer doesn't wholeheartedly believe in their story and want to write it for its own sake, that doesn't usually bode well for quality, in my experience.)

    I have also observed little or no correlation between a writer's motivation, the quality of the work, and the volume of reviews. Some of the most prolific writers whose work I'm acquainted with (in this fandom and others), some of whom have been writing since the days of 'zines in the 70s, get very few reviews on their (brilliant) work; yet they're still going. Others, whose work may be equally brilliant, are part of a 'community' of the type that almost invariably springs up around particular character pairings (not necessarily romantic), and are pretty much guaranteed at least so many in-depth reviews for their work; yet they move on and leave stories unfinished. So I think the main reason people abandon work is just that life gets in the way, or, more commonly, they find new fandoms or interests. (They actually get lives! :p )

    Personally the reasons I dropped away from fanficcing was just that RL got in the way. Seriously, for the past eight years it feels like I've been just going flat-out, and when I get any spare time I'm just too mentally exhausted for any writing. It had nothing to do with readership. Of course, that's just my experience.
     
  19. J_Girl

    J_Girl Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Feb 18, 2001
    As someone who had a fic going for long time on here eons ago, I feel like I can put a reason or two as to why one would stop posting. It wasn't the reviews for me. I am grateful anyone would think anything I wrote would be worthy of a review. Seriously, I write what I want to see happen in a fic and I think it's cool to see others thinking anything about it at all.

    Holding fics hostage is disheartening all around and seems contrary to the idea of writing one. If one doesn't want to share for the sole sake of sharing, then why bother at all? Just for ego strokes? Again, disheartening.

    We can all agree real life gets in the way a lot and is the main reason I fell off posting. If one plans to update once/twice weekly over 50 chapters, that is six months to a year of making sure it happens. That is a long time to keep up with one fic even if it is completely written ahead of time.

    Also, authors are a fickle bunch and if they are writing several fics at once, their muse may hold them hostage to something that is still in the works and not posted. Becoming invested in a new fic can completely end up eclipsing an author's interest in one of their old fics. I did that a lot. I was writing fast and furious and the plot bunnies and accompanying words could not be typed quick enough to keep up. My poor beta's couldn't keep up with what I was throwing at them and that sort of derailed me as well. If they weren't all that interested, who else was going to be?

    I could easily see how lack of any reviews would stop an author from continuing to post, but it is why I prefer ff.n because I can see people reading. It's mind-blowing compared to here where if someone doesn't comment or 'like' something, you have no idea people are even bothering with it.

    In opposition to a few comments above, one thing I admit I didn't care for very much was when at one point a reviewer once asked to continue my fic after a long interval of not posting. I mean, after all, it's my fic. Maybe if it had been asked in private I would have been more receptive to it, but probably not. I understood the 'complementary' vein of the request, but I thought it poorly thought through. Besides, nobody is going to stop you from doing it privately anyway, but don't post it publicly.

    I'm all for 'the more fic, the better' train of thought. BUT, think of it as an unfinished piece of art. How receptive would you expect an artist [even a complete amateur] using another medium like paint/clay/etc. to be to that question?:

    "Oh hey, I see you didn't finish that watercolor painting of Boba Fett. I think it's really turning out great! I was really enjoying watching you go through the process of painting it and couldn't wait to see the finished project. Since you appear to have given up on it, how about I just take over from here?"

    Now, I'm not declaring myself an 'artist,' but writing a story is a personal piece of work - albeit with established characters and universe. Still the turn of phrase, progression, pacing, and complementary plot to the GFFA is an author's own and should be respected as such, especially by others of the same ilk.

    A spinoff is a different thing to me entirely. Being inspired by someone's fic is a good thing, too. But I think we all know there's a difference between doing those things and 'finishing' someone's fic.

    Ok, I know many here don't agree with me, but it's my own personal opinion.
     
  20. SatineNaberrie

    SatineNaberrie Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 28, 2014
    I understand rl happens. I am busy with college so updating can be slow plus writer's block, it can be disappointing coming across such a great story only to find it hasn't been updated in years. I can understand months easily well I can understand years too ,but sometimes I wonder if something bad has happened to the writer in real life especially when it seems they loved writing and there was no indication of them giving up.
     
  21. Cushing's Admirer

    Cushing's Admirer Force Ghost star 7

    Registered:
    Jun 8, 2006

    @Viridian-Maiden:



    Very well said! =D= I simply cannot write unless a character is *speaking* to me. I have to let my heart guide me. When I force the words, it quite simply feels like I'm lying and it frustrates me no end. Finding a character's voice is difficult at the best of times but nearly impossible when you've had weeks, months, years of personal strife that stifles or *breaks* your ability to hear your characters. I think sometimes I can tell when someone is writing with their head as opposed to their heart and often they are conveyed very differently. My close friends can tell the difference with my work as well.

    However, you are correct, not all writers are the same. :D Cushy *has* to write what comes when it does or I will lose it. I like doing bridging scenes.
     
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  22. Force Smuggler

    Force Smuggler Force Ghost star 7

    Registered:
    Sep 2, 2012
    Too many fan-fics are not completed imo.
    Only in rare instances would I like to see a sequel if there isn't one. Outtakes with alternate scenes branching out from where a story went are welcome imo.

    Reviews are good but if you hold a story ransom for them, then no.
     
  23. Jedi_Lover

    Jedi_Lover Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Nov 1, 2004
    I think it would depend on how much is done and how close the two authors are. I would never think of doing that if I didn't know the writer in the first place. Also, the longer the unfinished story is...the less inclined I am to believe it should be taken over by anybody. But if the author does not mind and gives a person permission I think it is perfectly acceptable.

    In my case, my friend wrote about 2000 words to a long story she planned. She gave up after the first chapter or two. I loved the story concept and wanted to continue it. After five years of bugging her to finish it, I finally asked if I could complete it. I ended up writing another 60,000 words. With the sequels I probably have 300-400 thousand words written about the character she created.

    Brian Herbert (son of Frank Herbert) found a long lost safe-deposit box full of his father's notes for more Dune novels. I am infinitely grateful that he decided to take those notes and finish the story arc for his father. He also wrote a long line of prequels for the Dune series.
     
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  24. Briannakin

    Briannakin Grand Moff Darth Fanfic & Costuming/Props Manager star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    I agree. I think it's perfectly fine for someone to pick up where the original author dropped it IF they have the author's permission. It does help when the authors have similar styles or when the story has only been just started, but that doesn't necessarily have to be the case. Many movie series and TV series have different writers. When one writer or show-runner can't do it any more, more often than not another picks it up. Sure there are times when the story won't be completely coherent, but it works.

    There's an uncompleted story on the read-only boards that I've ALWAYS wanted to complete. The author wrote about 5000 words then just kinda dropped off the boards in like 2002 in like the middle of a cliffhanger chapter. I've tried to contact her, but it's never going to happen. However, if I ever by some odd chance got a hold of her and got permission, I would go back and edit the first parts of the story and make them more fit my writing style to make the story more coherent.
     
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  25. J_Girl

    J_Girl Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Feb 18, 2001

    As you pointed out, you did this with a friend's fic of a mere 2,000 words, her permission and you still waited five years before doing it. In Herbert's case, it was his deceased father's work. In these instances, continuing on has plenty of merit. I think it's great that your friend told you to run with it and the idea has been really inspiring to you. :)

    I was pointing out that generally random fans of a fic sometimes seem to think it's quite appropriate to ask without regard that the author feels artistic ownership of his/her work and I do not feel that is okay. I don't think it encourages authors to share their fics with us in the first place if they think it will be picked up by someone else if they leave it alone for any real length of time.

    There are so many fics I would like to see finished, but are sitting silent for whatever reason. It's sad, but that's the way it is. I have definitely done my fair share of flat-out begging for them to pick it up again, but it's their fic and, ergo, their choice. Just because I could/would finish it for them, doesn't give me the right to do so or to suggest to them that I should.

    Again, your case was different. You personally knew the author. I, too, have based fic ideas that have bounced off my close friend's fics with her complete permission ahead of time. Even then, I knew what I was asking and tried to do so with total respect.

    Authors do go back to their fics here and there. I picked up one of mine over 12 years later and I added two extra 'sequels' to it as well as adding over 80,000 words. I'm just not posting it at this particular site this time.

    Everybody has their own opinions on this. I'm not trying to change anyone's mind. I'm just stating where I land on it.
     
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