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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. devilinthedetails

    devilinthedetails Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jun 19, 2019
    Great question, @Briannakin. I personally don't think there is a deadline for when to have a holiday fic posted by unless it's being written for a specific challenge that has a hard deadline attached to it. Even then, the story might be able to get entered on a non-competitive basis into an index or could at least state in the author's note what challenge inspired it.

    Other than that, I always feel like it's up to the author when they want to have a particular fic posted by, and I'd hate to put any extra pressure on another fanfic author to have a certain holiday-themed story posted by a specific date. I tend to think of it as whenever they are done with the story and want to share it with a broader audience, that is the perfect time to share the story and not a moment before. It'll be ready when it's ready, and I can appreciate it when it's ready and not have to rush it.

    I agree that as a reader it can definitely be a special experience to read a "holiday special" type fic on or around the holiday. It can add to the feeling of festive excitement in the air, and feel like a present too! That being said, I don't mind the joy being spread into late January and beyond. I've even enjoyed both as a reader and a writer special "Christmas in July" type fanfic challenges so I'd say if you want to write a Christmas, Hanukah, or New Year's fic set in July, go for it, because it could still bring some holiday cheer to my life even after the holidays are done.

    As a writer, I tend to be a "follow the inspiration" type of author. So, often for me, holiday fics are inspired by the festive atmosphere leading up to the holiday, the change in season, the excitement of the new year, the first snowfall, fun winter activities, or even my own holiday experiences in the past or present. Those triggers often mean that I post my holiday fics in December or early January unless a challenge sparks my inspiration at some other time of the year.

    That being said, most of my fics are short little one shots. For a multiple chapter piece or a longer one shot, I could see how I might start writing it in December or January and not finish until a long time after because longer fics can be harder for me to finish.

    I think before Christmas or in the gap between Christmas and New Year's for holiday fics might draw the most readers and in terms of attracting readership numbers might be the "best" time to post.

    However, that may not be the "best" time to post for any individual author in terms of real life timing, creative inspiration, or structural issues with the fic.

    Ultimately, I think the "best" time to post any fic is when the author feels ready.

    Hope this is in some way helpful and not just empty words, haha.
     
  2. Oddly_Salacious

    Oddly_Salacious Jedi Master star 1

    Registered:
    Dec 5, 2005
    WordPad. Now that's a name I haven't heard in a long time.

    I considered a GitHub blog and stashing fanfic stuff online (I tend to create, but not overtly use, backstories). Then, I would link things posted to this forum to my GitHub items. It would alleviate some of the pressure I put on OneNote and my writing database. Yep... I'm a that nerd.

    In response to @Hernalt
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2020
  3. Kit'

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

    Registered:
    Oct 30, 1999
    Writing one of my OC characters (Namia) losing something important to her. I really struggle with the "Jedi as unfeeling attachment devoid autobots" so I've given her the behaviours of someone having a slight panic, but then I second-guess myself that it's too much.

    *sigh*

    What do you guys do when you hit something like that? try and stick close to canon ideas or just go 'stuff it, it's fan fiction for a reason."

    I put the bit in spoilers below too... *sigh*

    Namia screwed up the paper and sat up in bed, swinging her legs over the side. She reached for where she’d put her necklace the night before.

    It was gone.

    Her breath hitched in her throat. Maybe it had fallen off the table. That had to be it. She’d just bumped it off.

    Maybe it had fallen off the table. That had to be it. She’d just bumped it off.

    Sweat beaded her forehead. She slid off the bed and knelt down to look underneath it.

    It wasn’t there.

    Namia realised that her breath was coming in short gasps. This wasn’t Jedi like. How would she explain what had happened? Had he taken it? Maybe it had fallen somewhere else.

    Namia reached out her senses but she already knew the answer. The necklace had gone.

    Her hands were sweating now. The necklace only mattered to her. It wasn’t a Temple heirloom or anything. Jedi weren’t supposed to form attachments, so why was she reacting like this?

    She trembled as she picked up the comms link and dialed the number. It took her four goes to get it right. When the dazed and sleepy voice answered, Namia suddenly found herself without words. She managed to stammer out a few short syllables. The call ended and she sat back down on the edge of the bed, trying to find her centre and release her feelings to the Force. It would be alright. The cavalry was coming and they would sort it out.

     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2020
  4. Gamiel

    Gamiel Chosen One star 8

    Registered:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Have her [panic / semi-panic / just go on instinct/training] then when she have a chance to breath she centre themself and reprimand herself for losing control
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2020
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  5. devilinthedetails

    devilinthedetails Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jun 19, 2019
    @Kit' I will admit that my tendency with the Jedi is to give them human or sentient (in Star Wars terms) emotions and physiological reactions to things like sorrow or stress. I think this gives them relatable reactions and emotions not only for me as an author but for my readers, and because the Jedi do to me in the movies show human/sentient emotions like grief (Obi-Wan cries when Qui-Gon dies and cradles him, for example, which seems like a very natural reaction to me). I also think that in the movies and books we see Jedi struggling with emotions like fear and anger. In a way, Jedi still feel negative emotions like fear and anger, and just try to process them in a certain way to ultimately find peace and acceptance.

    I might show a Jedi trying to meditate to find peace or acceptance in the Force, seeking out a Master for wisdom, or thinking of the Jedi Code or some other aspect of Jedi philosophy. One Jedi also might reach out to sort of comfort or guide another through a rough point.

    With panic especially, I feel many of the instinctual reactions physiologically could be dealt with by a Jedi character taking deep breaths to calm him/herself or meditate or center himself/herself in the Force or change a negative thought pattern with a positive one. I think a Jedi would want to redirect from the negative because "Your focus determines your reality" as Qui-Gon Jinn would say.

    Ultimately, for writing emotions though, I ultimately go on my own experiences with emotions and how I've learned to handle them to guide me in writing since I think it makes my stories and characters feel more authentic to me and hopefully to my readers.

    Hope some of this helps! Good luck with your writing and happy new year![face_party]
     
  6. GregMcP

    GregMcP Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 7, 2015
    I like @devilinthedetails suggestion.

    Essentially, fun can be had exploring that tug between her natural reactions and her training. How she overcomes her feeling of panic is interesting. It helps show off her Jedi-ness.
     
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  7. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    Given that Yoda will be appearing in the new High Republic event, it got me thinking about how Yoda handled grief. Not just the grief of Order 66 and the Rise of the Empire, but grief of being so long lived and witnessing the death of so many friends and colleagues. I realize that the Code prohibits attachment, perhaps this is something that his race may enable better than others, but I wonder what his thought process is, through the ages, as generations pass. What do you think? Is he the ultimate stoic? If so, how can he show such humor, empathy, and wisdom to so many for so long? I know this may not be a new question, but given the High Republic, it got me thinking.
     
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  8. Oddly_Salacious

    Oddly_Salacious Jedi Master star 1

    Registered:
    Dec 5, 2005
    My INTJ personality forced me to pull the book down from the shelf. Return of the Jedi: Ben speaking with Luke on Dagobah after the passing of Yoda.

    Ben addresses Luke's impatience (his recklessness) which was driven by Luke's fear of losing his friends. He doesn't say that Luke must not feel emotion, even saying that he doesn't blame Luke for being angry with him for distorting the truth about Vader. Ben tells Luke that the disastrous experiences in Cloud City are now a part of Luke's training on impulsiveness and impatience. Something for which Ghost Yoda raps Luke on the head during their own fireside chat.

    Interestingly, in the book, Luke says he cannot confront Vader again—not kill my father as the movie has it, if I remember it correctly. If Luke refuses the confrontation, if he cannot face the precipice and take that next deciding step, then the Emperor, as the embodiment of the Dark Side, wins. Ben eventually says: "Bury your feelings deep down, Luke."

    A Jedi must root their feelings in discipline that develops emotional maturity because of their incredible ability to affect outcomes (cue a Spider-man swing-thru). The prequel's Anakin is much less mature in controlling his fits emotions than his Jedi counterparts. He eventually rejects the Jedi's altruistic discipline for the promises of immediacy granted by the Sith (Revan and Malak's falls mirror the same concept). The power to affect the outcome to his ideal is what seduces Vaderkin (I don't think the Fall is like a switch, but more like an erosion of restraint with the flow rate determined by many factors). Luke chooses to be a Jedi by rejecting the Emperor's offer of a high position of power. Palpatine's personal Dark Side machinations were thwarted, but Luke does not defeat the man himself. But both Palpatine and Vader were impacted by Luke's show of emotional maturity. In the novel, Luke pulls a wounded Vader back from suicide after Vader chucks Darth Sidious in the giant bin. Here, Luke is showing his father a selfless love through unmerited favor.

    In the book, on the log, Ben expounds on what was ham-fisted in the prequels regarding their backstory. He warns Luke not to involve Leia with Vader because she has not been trained to root her emotions deeply enough to resist the tug of the Dark Side. I think Ben is thinking about a potential Lady Vader -if I may borrow that from the Noghri. #oddly nerdy

    My only Jedi has been Bess Heiger. She was trained as a Jedi about a century before Yavin by a predatory Lamproid (who grants Bess a long life span). Bess's conflict is with what she knows is right and the shifting nature of what the current Good Guys might say is good. Nearer to the time of Yavin, Bess is labeled as a Dark Jedi by the Rebel Alliance (as no Jedi Council exists at this time) when she saves a garrison of Imperial troops from a ravaging local Rebel cell, who she was to help originally. Bess isolates and only by embracing trust, friendship, and sacrifice does she eventually forgive herself for the Atzerri Massacre; and she recognizes that she never turned from the Jedi. Bess certainly never abandons her feelings. Age brings her wisdom through continual experience (spoiler -that's at the root of Master Melioken's blood knowledge).
     
  9. Gamiel

    Gamiel Chosen One star 8

    Registered:
    Dec 16, 2012
    By not letting it rule him. By understanding that we all will die and while it's sad when it happens before someone's time (accidents, violence, sickness, etc.) it's part of nature and nothing that can be stopped, and you don't honour their passing by letting your lose of them affect your duty. And if you do feel your duty is affected by your grief, you excuse yourself to deal with it since the fallen would not want the lose of them to make you depressed, or hinder you in preventing a conflict.

    There is also likely funeral rites and/or rites to honour the dead that help with the grieving.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2021
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  10. Gamiel

    Gamiel Chosen One star 8

    Registered:
    Dec 16, 2012
    I have a setting (based on Marvel's Battleworld/Contest of Champions) that I get scene ideas for but I don't get an idea that binds them together. Do anybody have any suggestion for why one character/a group would be travelling across the land and interacting with people in it?
     
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  11. pronker

    pronker Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 28, 2007
    Taking a census? Compiling a political poll? Drafting an army a la Mulan?
     
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  12. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    • Road trip!
    • Epic quest to find MacGuffin
    • On the run from the law
    • Mission from God
    • Dude, we're getting the band back together
    • Any combination thereof
     
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  13. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    -Revenge
    -To bury the remains of a fallen friend
    -A pilgrimage to get secret knowledge from a moutain top guru.
    -To gather the chosen ones for a coming battle. (Getting the band back together :p)
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2021
  14. Gamiel

    Gamiel Chosen One star 8

    Registered:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Thanks for all the suggestions but something to keep in mind is that airplanes exist so there will need to be something that need to character/s to continue moving from one country to another, and the world is many different cultures - if each real often have variants of the same character.

    Here is my introduction of the world (which I am planning to have at the top of Chapter one, if I ever write this):
    Battleworld: a planet shaped into existence by the omnipotence being simply known as the Beyonder for him to study how the inhabitants reacted. To create it he plucked bits and pieces from other worlds, inhabitants and all – or maybe he just made perfect copies of them, it’s hard to tell with omnipotence beings – and put them together, like a giant jigsaw puzzle. Then he let them lose with some cryptic comment about a price.

    The Beyonder’s reign was brought short by a Dr. Doom in chrome armour and blue robes who somehow (Doom never explained how, except that he used his supreme genius to do it) was able to drain the Beyonder from all his power and take it into himself. Declaring himself the God-Emperor of Battleworld Doom become the harsh but usually just ruler of all that Beyonder had gattered. Doom declared laws to prevent all-out war on his world and divided the world into realms, with each realm being a autonomic country of its own with Doom not carrying how it was run or it’s leader, known as “barons/baronesses”, was chosen (even if Doom had the last word), as long as they followed his laws, gave him praise and did not make him come over there unscheduled.

    Doom’s rule was not really fair but it created much needed order, then he died. No body knows how, some say that it was an experiment gone wrong; that the Beyonder’s powers burned him out form the inside; an assassination; the Beyonder only had made Doom think that he had taken him down, and had now grown tired of the charade; among many other. What was important was that Doom was dead, and none of the realm was prepared for it.

    Thankfully some of the most powerful realms was able to create something similar to UN from Doom’s quickly disintegrating bureaucracy and an agreement that disagreements should only be handled through the system of through controlled violence by contest of champions.


     
  15. pronker

    pronker Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 28, 2007
    Since there are airplanes and no need for slogging through the countryside a la LOTR, perhaps something that rich people do: international pub crawling, birding from land to land to spot the rarest/highest number of species, anything in search of that perfect way to show off one's wealth/knowledge/shiny quinjet?
     
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  16. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 21, 2016
    This pair of words caused my brain to instantly generate an image of Tony Stark. Thank you.
     
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  17. Briannakin

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

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    This is more me taking a moment to word vomit but any advice/opinions are welcome.

    I often say fanfic are like farts - if you try to force it out, it's just going to be a mess that you'll regret.

    In my experience if I try to force myself into writing something, it just turns out bad and often it will lead to my muse going even further into hiding. But I'm bored and going through a period where I'm just ANNOYED with everyone and every little thing and its just putting me into a general foul mood. Normally fanfic is where I go to de-stress, unwind, and escape to my own little world buuuuut my muse is being a butt.

    So I'm trying to decide if I should try to force myself to work on one of my old unfinished fics - because I often dont know that my muse wants something till I sit down and work on it. Or do I just let my muse be and know it'll eventually return on its own.
     
  18. devilinthedetails

    devilinthedetails Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Jun 19, 2019
    Some random ramblings that may or may not have advice buried in them (who knows? Certainly not me.):

    I think I used to take more of a power through it, plow through it, and force yourself to do it approach to my writing when I found myself getting into a writing rut or just not wanting to write much or not writing much (and the last two can be a bit different as someone can not want to write but still be writing, primarily by forcing himself or herself to write). My overall attitude in that period was basically saying to myself whenever I wanted a break or didn't want to do something that I felt I had to do, "Tough luck you got to do it. If you waited until you wanted to do everything, your lazy self would never get anything done, because your self is very lazy and self-indulgent."

    I've come to think that approach has merit when it is truly something that I'll probably never want to do or feel deeply inspired to do--like an unpleasant household chore--but when it is something like writing that I know I will indeed want to do at some point and feel inspired to do, that attitude seems just to be beating myself up needlessly.

    Which doesn't mean I don't sometimes slip and backslide into blaming myself needlessly when I judge myself as not being as productive as I should be with my writing. For me, sometimes I have found it helpful to ask myself if what I'm feeling is a genuine desire to write or if it is just me putting pressure on myself to write when I don't want to--piling the guilt on myself because I should be writing in the same way I should be doing a household chore I dislike. That feeling of guilt sometimes creeps up on me when I'm doing something else I enjoy like reading (that voice in my head can also remind me of other obligations I should be fulfilling almost whenever I engage in a leisure activity as if that inner critic just doesn't ever want me to be happy or relaxed, which is why I increasingly try not to heed the voice of that inner critic).

    However, if it is not a case of inner guilt trying to spur me into writing when I don't want to do it, and I do want to write but I'm struggling to know where to start writing again, sometimes I dive into writing again with a short piece to get myself back in the feel of writing. Or I might focus on some aspect of writing that I really love. For me, that is often worldbuilding. So I might open a Google doc and begin doing worldbuilding for a fic I'm currently working on or might work on in the future. The point is to have fun and to get some creative juices flowing. To feel inspired again. If something productive or useful comes out of this, that's great. If it doesn't, that's okay too because at least I did something I enjoyed doing and who knows? Maybe it'll end up being useful in a way I never could've predicted. For another writer, it might be more satisfying to work on character outlines/character creations or on plotting/brainstorming story ideas. I think anything that really gets in touch with that creative aspect of writing and doesn't feel too daunting can be extremely helpful at this stage.

    For longer, unfinished works, it might be possible to try writing more for that story in a separate document. If you like what you end up writing, you can easily add it to your story, and if you don't like it, you don't have to worry about it confusing your story or deleting it from your story. I'd say if you do want to write, you don't have that must to lose by giving it a shot and deleting it if you don't like it. However, if you don't really want to write and are only being driven by a guilty feeling that you should write, then I'd say give yourself a break. Don't beat yourself up. Wait until you want to write because if you are a fanfic writer who chooses to write in your free time there will definitely be a time when you do want to write again.

    I suppose this is my long-winded way of saying that I've increasingly shifted from favoring the stricter school of thought of forcing myself to write for the more whimsical but to me more joyful approach of following my inspiration. I guess for me it has come down to the fact that I don't want to approach my fanfic writing like it is some unpleasant household chore I dread doing (because really who wants a hobby that feels like a chore?) or as if it is something that I should feel guilty about not doing it often enough.

    So, I think for me it has become about trying to tap into my creativity and inspiration and just following my creativity and inspiration. That might mean taking on a shorter fic. That might mean trying to tackle the next chapter of a longer fic that has been on hold for awhile. That might mean writing that piece that has been on my creative backburner for awhile. That might mean worldbuilding in a Google Doc. If it makes my creative juices flow, if it makes me feel inspired, and most importantly, if it makes me feel happy and satisfied with myself, it's all good.

    Maybe there is some advice buried in there for others to apply to their writing lives, but ultimately these writing decisions are very personal things so I cannot guarantee that an approach that works for me will work or even make sense to anyone else since my mind is a strange place and my muse a fickle creature.
     
  19. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    When this happens to me I will usually look to a challenge or randomly pick words from the dictionary to write drabbles. It doesn't always work but it's a way to spark your museun way that may not be specific to any fics that you are presently writing.
     
  20. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    Funny you should mention this. Similar situation came up when I was reading a High Republic novel recently. It dealt more with the grieving process Of younger beings jedi and non jedi alike. The non jedi characters were surprised at the jedi had no warrant for revenge or to even discover who had perpetrated a certain act. The grieving process for the non jedi was much more emotional where the jedi were more thoughtful. For the jedi is more like well I guess that's how the cookie crumbles and And all of the characters are in a better place, the Force. The two jedi a Knight and a paddle one had different reactions which I thought was well portrayed.
     
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  21. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    This resonated with me. Darth Real Life has been throwing a lot of really hard stuff at me--and has been for quite some time. Some days I can sit down and putter a bit , but I can't keep any momentum going. A lot of times when I have the opportunity to write, I'm just mentally and emotionally exhausted, too disgruntled and unable to focus. I would love to be able to write--I have the ideas and the desire, but it just doesn't work and I wind up doing something that requires less brain power instead. It's really frustrating, but I've had to learn to stop beating myself up for not writing, because otherwise the guilt of not getting anything done becomes another source of stress. I don't know if that's advice or just me venting :p
     
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  22. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    I apologise for my multiple responses but I know exactly how you feel at the moment. DRL is coming down like a ton of bricks and I can't seem to Get anything going. For me it feels like writing fan fiction is when there isn't something heavy hanging over your head. I won't call it frivolous but perhaps a luxury. I have found it a stress reliever at times, Bello depends on what the DRLIssue is.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2021
  23. amidalachick

    amidalachick Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Aug 3, 2003
    100% this.

    I've always loved reading and writing in general. I've been involved in fanfic and fandoms for the majority of my life. It's always been an escape, a happy place, the one thing I can count on when everything else in my life is falling apart.

    I've struggled with insecurity, perfectionism, stress, anxiety, depression, all that fun stuff for most of my life too. I've even stopped writing before, or just gone through periods where I didn't write very much. But I was still able to read and participate, even on a more limited scale.

    This time is different, though. This time it's like all the bad things have been turned up to 11 and the good things have just disappeared. I want to write and I just can't. I can barely concentrate enough to read, books or fanfic. Commenting, interacting, everything just feels like too much work. And then when I do finally come up with something that I'm even a tiny bit excited about my mind oh-so-helpfully reminds me that actually, it sucks, it's garbage, it's a stupid idea anyway, you have nothing to contribute so why even bother, why waste everyone's time, and on and on. And these days I'm just too tired to fight it. So I don't write, and I get more miserable, and it becomes a never-ending vicious cycle.

    tl;dr: I have no advice to offer, just big hugs to everyone who's struggling and the hope that things get better all around. [:D][:D]
     
  24. gizkaspice

    gizkaspice Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 27, 2013
    That's just depression/anxiety talking. Don't listen to it. You're a great writer with awesome ideas. I know it's hard not to listen to that section of the mind, but if you can just get enough strength to go ahead and just write it and post it anyways, that's already a victory.

    The other thing is challenging those thoughts: "it's a stupid idea anyways" ---> Maybe it is, but I don't care. "you have nothing to contribute so why even bother" --> yet, people post really stupid crap on the Internet all the time, I'm certain my stuff is above that. "why waste everyone's time" ---> I'm not wasting anyone's time; it's their choice to read it. I'm just doing what makes me happy right now.

    I dunno, that's my self-talk (it doesn't always work but I try my best). I know it's easier said than done, but sometimes you just need to say "**** you, brain I'm a great writer" and carry on.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2021
  25. Briannakin

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

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    I wish there was a button to love this comment, because I do and it's what I needed to hear personally.


    We are all - obviously - dealing with different levels and combinations of burn-out, depression, anxiety, frustration, exhaustion (mental and physical), and/or a whole bunch of other stuff.

    I know sometimes my issues are my complete lack of ideas, other times it's just the exhaustion kicking in and the need to do something that just requires little to no brain power (even if that need does not correlate with my want to write).

    I think for myself, I'm going to take up @brodiew 's suggestion of some sort of drabble-y-ish (new word and I'm going with it) project. Taking an idea for a longer fic and just writing the scenes that I wanna write.