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Discussion The Scribble Pad (Fanfic Writing Discussions)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Writing Resource' started by Briannakin , Jun 18, 2017.

  1. amidalachick

    amidalachick Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Aug 3, 2003
    Same here, and I really like how you put it! Speaking completely for myself of course, but fanfiction has always been an escape and when I'm reading or writing I don't want to think about my personal problems, or the state of the world, or anything to do with real life.

    If channeling your emotions into fic works for you (general you), though, then absolutely go for it!

    Also:

    I find swearing helps too. Sometimes a good loud "****!" is just what you need.
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2020
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  2. Briannakin

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

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    I'm glad it worked and hopefully it stays out of your system! I mean that in a good way. I know I sometimes get those plot that just won't leave me alone but that my writing style or abilities won't let me write, or that I just don't want to write. Hopefully you can now move onto something brand spankin' new.

    Nah. I'm not a physical person, let alone a physically violent person. The height of my anger might have me throw a bouncy-ball across the room. Also know my "getting my angst out by writing" was often during my angsty teenage years. Now it might pop up if I'm having a particularly bad 'visit from aunt flo'/shark week/whatever you want to call getting your period, but that's it.

    And I swear like a sailor whether I'm angry or not.
     
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  3. amidalachick

    amidalachick Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Aug 3, 2003
    Sorry if this isn't the right place for this, but I came across this blog post earlier and every single word hit me so hard, and I wanted to share it here in case anyone else needs to hear it too.

    It's about writing and creating for the joy and love of it, not to be 'perfect' or even 'good enough'.

    Link to original Tumblr post by phantomrose96

    My relationship with content creation and hobbies, in general, got a lot better when I started learning to reframe it as a simple act of human creation, and not a metric of my own self worth.

    We’re taught competition, and perfectionism, and shame. If I say “I cook” I must add “(but not well)”. If I say “I run” I must say “(but I am not good at it).” I say “I code (but I mostly know frontend).” I create and express and my first impulse is to guard against embarrassment. Lest I fall so short of marketable competence. Lest I subject myself to the mockery of being caught creating poorly. I wound myself first so others may not.

    Even the advice that fights against this says “your only goal should be to be better than yourself yesterday.” But why must I be in competition with her? What happens, after the initial rapid climb in skill, when I plateau? What of injury, and atrophy, and depression, that flake these skills away? Must I return feeling compelled to over-achieve? To wallow in embarrassment until I can surpass my own previous record? To hate my work until the reception, the notes, the engagement outperform an ever rising bar? I do not want to be paralyzed by the mountains I built behind me. Why should I look behind myself when there’s a wide swath of untilled Earth that stretches far out of sight ahead of me? I want to enjoy my work, and my mediocrity, moving forward with all its ebbs and flows.

    At my worst, I was nothing. I was not a writer. Because I had forgone writing for all the fear and stress and damage to my self-worth that it wrought. I was not a coder. Because I was only useful for the niches of my job, and didn’t have the heart to create something badly, on my own, for fun, lest it confirm my suspicions of mediocrity. I was not even a runner - despite the extreme and exhaustive amount of time I sunk into it - because I fell short of my previous self, and I could not hold a candle to the actually-skilled runners, and I was forced to speak of this hobby in all those guarded terms - “but i am not good” - because of how much that ate at me.

    I was no cook, and no homemaker, and no creator, because when I did those things, (I did them poorly.)

    And when all these came together, I wallowed in emptinesses. (I still do, sometimes. It’s hard and complicated). Because emptiness is what was left when I stripped myself of the things and the pursuits whose lack of value could be used to hurt me.

    The change for me - the change, I think - came at the time I started to recognize that I do not deserve self-punishment for my mediocrities, for the failings of my current state of being. It was not a revelation all at once. It was a slow and progressive flirting with the idea, found almost by accident on self-help youtube channels of a very particular ilk. It came with the recognition that I had trapped myself, wiling away my time and my energy, in a state of constant apology, and shame, and self-correction for the mediocrities I dare not unleash onto the world. I boxed myself up with the promise “once I am good enough, I will be allowed to come back out”, and that was a lie. I would never have come back out. I was chasing punishing metrics of self-improvement that I did not need, and would never actually catch and maintain, and which would never love me back.

    It took a long time to internalize this. It took a long time to get angry on my own behalf. It took a long time to act on it, and write again because **** you. To run on my own terms, at my own pace, for my own enjoyment because **** you. To create with my hands again because **** you. To lean into the happiness of creation that I had not “earned”, because **** you.

    I like creating because it fills an emptiness that used to be there. It’s so simple, and so lovely, that humans are like this. That we want to build with our hands. That we want to assemble and construct. That we derive joy from stacking pieces together, and stringing words together, and assembling colors on a page, and moving, and singing, and baking, and knitting. Humans love to build little worlds around them.

    So why must we so actively try to cut people off from it off from it? Why do we condition ourselves to fear its mediocrity? Why does this still our hands? Why do we suffocate it for ourselves, before others can? I don’t have an answer. I can only recognize the monster.

    I want to make bad art today. I want to make bad art tomorrow. If I am a worse writer tomorrow, I want that to be fine. If I am never more than a mediocre runner, I want to be at complete peace with that. Because if not, then I might box away my hobbies again, and my loves, and my pursuits. I might go back to empty. I might go back to nothing.

    I hate that emptiness I lived through. I hate that nothing. I want to make bad art for the rest of my life.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2020
  4. mavjade

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

    Registered:
    Sep 10, 2005
    Wow, that really resonates with me! I've gone back and read some things I'd written in the past and wonder why I was better then than I am now, and it often keeps me from writing. The part that really stood out to me was:
    I 100% feel this.

    Thank you for sharing that amidalachick! I think a lot of us can probably relate.
     
  5. Kit'

    Kit' Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Oct 30, 1999
    I think you just explained my 10 year hiatus from writing @amidalachick thank you!

    Hit a very strange conundrum. I found a bunch of really old fics (like 2004 era) that I'm not sure I ever published and if I did they got eaten by the boards. They come from a universe/world that I don't write anymore, and the people I did write it with no longer write for the boards so it's not coming back...

    So the question after that long winded intro is - should I cannibalize them? Like change universe, characters but keep the story the same? It feels weird but then again it also feels weird to feel attached to the characters/stories that no longer really exist.
     
  6. pronker

    pronker Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 28, 2007
    They might still give pleasure and insight as to where your head was at the time. Are you glad you kept them?

    EAD: Eeep! I ought to add that some files from 2007 proved fruitful in 2020 to me.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2020
  7. devilinthedetails

    devilinthedetails Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Jun 19, 2019
    @amidalachick Thank you for sharing that post. It really resonates with me, because I do have that tendency to inflict that first wound on myself, to deprecate my skills even in things that I do as a hobby and just for fun that is probably not healthy and not resulting in my happiness. It should be enough to do something that I enjoy and take pleasure in it without the need to constantly beat myself up or critique myself in harsh terms that I'd never use with someone else. Like I'd never read someone else's fanfic and be like, "Well, this is a hot mess, and the person who wrote it should be very ashamed of themselves, and never write again," but that is what my self-talk can sound like at my most negative moments, it's really so toxic to be speaking to myself that way. Because, deep down, I don't like to be talked to in that way. Nobody does. So it really is important to try to love ourselves and try to relate to ourselves with the compassion and respect we'd show for someone else. We do deserve it, not really nasty criticism.

    And I also really appreciate the bit about not seeing ourselves as in competition with our past selves. It can be nice to see how much we grow as writers over time--one of the most rewarding aspects of writing in some ways--but there will be days where we seem to plateau or even regress, and it's okay to have those days. And those are the days we probably most need to be gentle and encouraging with ourselves. So I like that the post you shared reminded us of the beauty in our imperfections--in the "bad art" we are driven to create because the urge to create is in itself so wonderful and noble.

    @Kit' I'm all for cannibalizing stories and story ideas or worldbuidling or created characters. I figure if I create a story idea that doesn't get written but it fits in with another story or a piece of world building that doesn't work with one story but can be slipped into another or a character that doesn't get introduced in one story but can get integrated into another, I'm still being able to use something that I spent time and effort into creating. And to me part of the creative process can be the morphing of one idea or concept into a sometimes completely different story or concept. So, from my point of view, I say cannibalize away!
     
  8. Kit'

    Kit' Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Oct 30, 1999
    I'm very glad I kept them. Rediscovered that 16 year old me was quite decent at poetry but bad for mary-sue esque characters (they are very 16 year old girl characters).

    Yeah, it's taking a bit of rejigging but I think at least one of those characters will be able to fit seamlessly into the Kit/Namia universe. I think other people will appear elsewhere. None of the characters was every really, really well developed and those that were will stay in the universe to which they belong.
     
  9. GregMcP

    GregMcP Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 7, 2015
    EDIT: I'll just shrink my rant down to "Go For It."
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2020
  10. Kit'

    Kit' Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Oct 30, 1999
    Oh. I wanted to read the rant


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  11. GregMcP

    GregMcP Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 7, 2015
    Essentially, the characters that you love and live in your head are more important than the background you put them in.
    So send them through a Stargate to another parallel universe.
     
  12. gizkaspice

    gizkaspice Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 27, 2013
    I second this--actually, it made me think a little bit about this as well, because I have so many characters from other fandoms/stories that kind of live in their own little universe I haven't touched upon in years and there's really no reason I can't put them into a SW setting or "recycle" them for another setting and develop them further or have them live in this parallel universe as they are, especially if you feel attached to them.
     
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  13. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 21, 2016
    I wonder what it says about me that there's really only one fanfic I've ever written that I go back and read, and say to myself, "You know what, that really sucks." And that one story happens to be my first real attempt at fanfic, so it is not a victim of harsh self criticism. It actually legitimately sucks.
     
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  14. darkspine10

    darkspine10 Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Dec 7, 2014
    When it comes to adapting old ideas into new content, I'd say cannibalise away ;) Always room to improve on the past, to tweak it to your new sensibilities.

    I've been on a pretty stark hiatus since about early November. Haven't written a word or done any planning. I just got very burnt out with some of my projects, not that they were bad, just a struggle to get done to the level I wanted. Now I have some plans for a longer work, a non-fanfic idea I want to develop into a book (or maybe a trilogy down the line), but I think the size of my ambitions may be putting me off from actually starting. Maybe in the new year I'll start doing some major planning work (I have worldbuilding and a rough outline that needs expanding), or begin fleshing out the first few chapters where I have a pretty clear idea of where I want things to go.

    One element I have planned actually goes back to that cannibalising thing. It's a concept I've used before, not in any published work, but in an internal story I like to run in the background when I'm not doing much else. Do other people do that, create their own sprawling stories by just mashing all their fandoms together? :p Anyway, one of those 'stories' I thought up once could work really well in the context of the new book plan, so I think I'll lightly modify and it and reuse it when I come to work on those sections :)
     
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  15. pronker

    pronker Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 28, 2007
    Nobody can say that about @Cowgirl Jedi 1701 while I'm around, not even @Cowgirl Jedi 1701.
     
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  16. GregMcP

    GregMcP Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 7, 2015
    Eh. It's okay to suck. No one is cruel here. If it's really that appalling, it mercifully disappears off to Page 2.
     
  17. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 21, 2016
    Wow, thanks. But I seriously dare you to still say that after reading the story, because it really is pretty egregious.
     
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  18. Hernalt

    Hernalt Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Jun 29, 2000
    Does anyone use password protected blogs to write their work ?

    Does anyone use automatic script / screenplay formatting software ?

    E.g., I don't want to clutter my work computer with writing fiction.

    The ideal scenario would be a password-protected blog that hosts screenplay formatting software and a place for notes.

    I can get to it from anywhere, it's ""safe"", it's computer agnostic, it keeps my computers free of it. --I'd like to keep it at arm's length, in its place.

    Can anyone share their mechanical process? (Not talking about writing process, inspiration, motivation.)

    Recommendations of websites or software?

    Mav Edit: I think this is a great topic for the Scribble Pad, so I'm going to move it there.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 16, 2020
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  19. Kit'

    Kit' Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Oct 30, 1999
    I use google docs. That way I can get to it from anywhere (although I have to hot spot myself at work as my school doesn't like google docs). That way I have lots of files that I know are pretty safe. Then post here :)
     
  20. GregMcP

    GregMcP Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 7, 2015
    Absolutely Google Docs.
    It means you can be on the train and fix something on your phone. It lets you work anywhere.

    I'd love a version that lets you copy docs in BBCode, so I don't have to put in all the square brackets.

    If you aren't a Google type of person, Apple and Microsoft have their equivalent editors.
     
  21. devilinthedetails

    devilinthedetails Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Jun 19, 2019
    I used to write on Word and email documents to myself as attachments but I have converted to Google Docs. It is so nice to have my fics or outlines ready to pull up anywhere. It would also be easy to share with a beta which is a great bonus.
     
  22. amidalachick

    amidalachick Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Aug 3, 2003
    This is just from a quick Google search so I don't know how useful it is, but: some screenwriting software options.

    I resisted using any sort of cloud-based writing software for a long time (I was a WordPad girl all the way :p), but I switched to Zoho Docs (Writer is the actual writing app) earlier this year and now I love it! I've used Google Docs as well, and as far as I can tell they're similar. I just personally prefer the non-Google option for this particular use.

    It does make it super-convenient for collaborating or beta reading, and as everyone has mentioned, the portability is also really convenient and great to have. I also find, for me at least, having my documents in a password-protected private account has helped my creativity and productivity (when I'm able to write at least :p). I feel much more comfortable experimenting and I've definitely written things I wouldn't have otherwise. So that's another plus.
     
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  23. Kit'

    Kit' Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Oct 30, 1999
    That's how the beta for my long fic communicate. It means she can check stuff when she has time and we aren't limited to both having to be awake or flicking emails back and forth. Plus I can see it on my phone which has been a nice present on some days at work.
     
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  24. Briannakin

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

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    @CaraJinn brought this up in the social thread and I thought it would make a great scribble pad topic: Christmas/holiday fics and when should you have them posted by?

    Personally, for me was a reader, I will read a holiday fic whenever it's posted. Like when I am binge watching a TV show and I happen to get to the holiday episode in May... whatever, I'll still love it probably, And knowing what it is like to write fics (especially around the - normally - hectic holiday season) I completely understand if an author doesn't get their holiday fic posted till like late January or later (because I have soooo been there as an author). Of course it is special too read a holiday fic on/around the holiday season, but not necessary.

    As an author, I do try to get my holiday fics posted by like early January, because I love that feeling of putting a "holiday special" out there and for me personally, the holiday muse tends to fade pretty quick after January 1st. This year I was super stoked to get a "Hanukkah" fic (it's more of an amalgamation holiday fic featuring Hanukkah) for the middle of Hanukkah, Unfortunately my Christmas fic has decided the fluff needs to be much longer so I'm still like ~1500 words away from finishing it without the time or the energy to finish it pre-Christmas, but I'm thinking I'll probably post part 1 before Christmas and then (hopefully) finish and post part 2 sometime between Christmas and New Years. I think that gap between Christmas and new years is the perfect gap for holiday fics!
     
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  25. pronker

    pronker Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 28, 2007
    Hear, hear! Me, too. :)
     
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