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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. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    In ye olden days when I was but a wee padawan, there was a 'mentorship program' that seems to gave gone away many moons ago. I was, then able to find someone I enjoyed reading and seeing their comments in threads like this, and ask them if they would be my fan fiction master. As a result, I was able to learn the etiquette of the site and have a mentor to bounce my ideas off of and potentially grow as writer and a reader reviewer. I was taught that there are different types of reader responses, much like what has been described above. The short, well done or nice job. to the I liked this or that, which can sometimes come with reader suggestions or prompts. Though I don't see as many unsolicited prompts these days, I am still amazed by the lengths will go to show their enjoyment of my writing. When I respond, I usually try to be direct by responding to questions or affirming comments. I will also let reviewer know if they have touched an element or moment that is a personal favorite of mine within the piece. I don't often go long in my responses, unless responding to more lengthy reviews. I don't know that it is hypocritical the respond in brief even to a lengthy review. If I address elements of the review in my response, then I've done a fair job. Verbosity, if it be a word, doesn't always mean quality in responding to a review.

    As far as being a reviewer, I learned that being specific is important. This can be achieved in the written word, but can be compounded by the use of pull quotes. What author doesn't want to see their own words pulled from their story as a showcase and then to have someone explain why they pulled the quote if icing on the cake. I mean a pull quote needs a explanation even it is simply: Brilliant! At least with the pulll quote you know what the brilliant is referring to. :p

    Not all readers are writers, but most writers read. Do for others what you would have them do for you. O:)
     
  2. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    On a separate note I am wondering if Is such a thing as fake it to you make it exist in fan fiction. Every now and again I want to step into a John road that I don't usually write it's the right and even now I'm struggling with romantic fluff but at the same time want to write an anxiety reunion between 2 non Star Wars characters that have been separated for a while. When I say fake it to you make it neither one of these want to come easy but I'm wondering if I just do it and see whether it comes out genuine or not. Have you ever written something the way you think it autosound and still come away happy even if it's not in your normal voice. I feel Iike I am a little off the reservation here. In fact I've already written the anxiety reunion in one way and I want to come at it from a more painfully emotional angle The last one was more humorous angst. Thoughts?
     
  3. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    Okay, I’ve been meaning to answer this for a awhile, but life continues to be Darth-tastic, so I apologize for taking so long. I think there can absolutely be an element of “fake it til you make it” or a period of trial and error whenever you try to tackle something that’s outside your wheelhouse. I remember when I first started writing romance, it felt really foreign to me. I knew what I didn’t want to write but figuring out what I did want to say took a lot of effort at first. I was afraid of sounding like either a robot or a twelve-year-old was writing. Fortunately, I had a couple good friends and beta readers who encouraged me and helped me smooth off the rough edges. For me, what made it worth the effort was that I really wanted to tell that story with those characters, and I am still really pleased with the way the story turned out. Writing romance has become a lot more comfortable for me over the last couple years since I wrote “Star Crossed” and I’m glad I stuck with romance writing. I actually enjoy it a lot now.

    So if this is the story you want to tell, stay with it, but give yourself some grace for the process of discovering how to make it feel like your voice. There’s room in the romantic fluff genre for a lot of variation and the type of fluff that you enjoy doesn’t have to be exactly like anyone else’s. Of course, the flip side is if you give it your best shot and it’s just not making you happy, don’t force yourself. This is supposed to be fun, after all. MTFBWY!
     
  4. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Oct 11, 2005
    Thank you for this response, Raissa! To be truthful, I'm not sure what I want. I really like these characters, but like Luke and Mara, so long ago, they seem out of reach. I can't think of much on my own and can't seem to find the right prompts to get where I want to go. I'm this close to letting profic or other authors write it. I have always had the hardest time, a few exceptions, with mushy romance. Perhaps, it is just that I don't have that much experience with it. As you know, I usually exist in the extremes of silliness or angst. I have been known to write some light drama, write more in the NSWFF than in SW of late. Thanks, again. If you have any specific prompts that I might try, shoot me a PM.
     
  5. pronker

    pronker Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 28, 2007
    Best wishes on writing and I agree with your sentiment here - just this week discovered the Force.net's NJO homepage to spend a lot of time ogling artwork and reminiscing about how exciting it was to squee every 2 months over the new books in the saga! Nowadays, well, I've not any plot bunnies for Nom Anor, Danni Quee, or Tahiri despite being so fond of all the NJO characters.
     
  6. amidalachick

    amidalachick Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Aug 3, 2003
    This is kind of silly, but has anyone else ever wanted to read one particular fic that just doesn't exist? I've been craving a specific plot and all I want to do is sit down and read it but to the best of my knowledge nobody's ever written it.

    If this has ever happened to you, what did you do? Write it yourself? Commission someone to write it for you? Just daydream about it and accept that that's the closest you'll ever get to being able to read it?

    It's not a big deal or anything, I'm just curious if anyone else's brain is weird like that. :p
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2021
  7. pronker

    pronker Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 28, 2007
    Good food for thought. Fic plots spring, uninvited for the most part, and then I dither: write it myself? Perhaps. Commission? Well, I've not done that but who's to say it's not in the future? The closest to commission is on fic exchanges, which I've done mostly on LiveJournal and that was maybe a decade ago ... no money passed hands, just lurve.^:)^ I've got a riproaring idea and outline for a timeskip fic currently, languishing due to beastly RL.[face_skull] Plus, I'm wondering if I just really, really like the fandom and the plot - which I do - and only want to plug the right canon characters into it. Should I try to make a go of it with all OCs? Decisions, decisions...

    Speaking of writing in general, does anyone know the term "pro-shipping"? Just discovered it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2021
  8. Briannakin

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

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    Oh absolutely! Particularly stuff I know I could never write (due to time, my muse's concentration/interest, or storylines that are incomplete or that I couldn't do justice, etc.). Most of my time I will just daydream about it in my head, knowing that unless I write it myself, it will never happen. But sometimes I'll just take a moment or a scene from it and turn it into a vignette or drabble. That sometimes satisfies it.

    I've never heard of commissioning a fic. Wow. Sounds like something I would totally do, but finding someone to write what I would be envisioning in my brain would be hard, but also cool. Like the Fic-Gift exchange to the extreme.
     
  9. Gamiel

    Gamiel Wacky Wednesday Winner star 9 VIP - Game Winner

    Registered:
    Dec 16, 2012
    Not a specific plot that often really but more often I have found myself wanting to read fics about certian characters (Marvel's Cindy Moon e.g.) and when searching for them motly find that the ficks that have them listed as appearing only have them in that list becouse they list as all characters that appear in that fic and that character is not one bit important to the plot.

    I can't say I did anything, beside groan, I just don't seem to have the spark for doing fics right now, and part of the reason I went searching for fics with those characters were becouse I wanted to see what others had done.
     
  10. darkspine10

    darkspine10 Chosen One star 8

    Registered:
    Dec 7, 2014
    Oh yes indeed, that's a relatable feeling. Back in 2019 I was reading a whole bunch of Gravity Falls fics, deep diving into various small niches. Eventually I read one specific fic that had a brilliant premise that I fell in love with. Unfortunately it was a pretty short one-shot. I craved more. I commented on the fic saying how much I'd want more of the concept.

    Then, one evening, I just decided that if I wanted more and no-one else was catering to my wants, then I had the power to make more, myself. I wrote about 2000 words in one mad flurry, and that kickstarted everything else I've ever written since. It all started in a desire to make more of that very specific basic concept.

    Basically, it felt like this gif:
    [​IMG]

    :p
     
  11. Briannakin

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

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    On a similar topic: what do you do when you have a really fun idea for a fic, but your brain - for whatever reason - cant quite do the idea justice? Do you write it anyway because you are bored, fanfic is a hobby to cure boredom, and because not every fic needs to be/can be a masterpiece? Or just wait until the fanfic gods strike your muse with divine power (if they ever do)?

    Or am I the only one this happens to :p
     
  12. gizkaspice

    gizkaspice Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 27, 2013
    Not silly at all! I think like @Gamiel I want to see what other people's take on things are like. But yeah, if there's a particular fic that doesn't exist I will make it exist...:p

    Mando and cats? Kylo Ren being a hopeless manchild with a cat peeing on him? Stories about Millicent's magical wardrobe of mysterious hats? Other stuff? Yes, stuff like this can only be found in the weird mind of the gizkaspice and hence can only be written by such because I doubt anyone would write it..and uh... you can't just make this stuff up 8-} But would I want to see people have their take on it? Absolutely and I wish for some plots I could take a backseat and just read something by someone else for a chance.

    Other times I would want to write a story and just daydream about it and it would mostly go nowhere. I mean, I guess you could also just write it on paper and read it for yourself which is what I do sometimes.
     
  13. darkspine10

    darkspine10 Chosen One star 8

    Registered:
    Dec 7, 2014
    I've had an idea for a fic in mind for a few months now, but due to burnout and some fears that I wouldn't do it justice, I've held off writing it in full (besides a rough outline of notes). Though I'm hoping later this month when I have some free time to finally try tackling it, at least partially. It's been too long since I last wrote, so I really to get back on it, and my muse seems slightly more amenable these last few days that it has been in a while :)
     
  14. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    Has anyone else come back to writing after a period of inactivity and felt like you just don’t know how to do it anymore? I’ve had several WIPs and a couple of plot bunnies clamoring for me to write but when I finally had the opportunity to do it today, it was like I didn’t know how to start. (yeah, I know, type words into the document… :p) It probably doesn’t help that I wasn’t really happy with the last story I wrote and that I’ve been rereading a lot of my old stories as I’m uploading them to AO3. I just don’t have a lot of confidence in my abilities lately and I’m not sure how to get myself moving again.
     
  15. pronker

    pronker Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 28, 2007
    Would delving into another aspect of fandom work? I'm thinking fanart in particular because images help me springboard into writing from deviantArt, pixiv, or simply googling 'Obi-Wan fanart', for instance.[face_good_luck] Others may prefer music to inspire ... :amidala::anakin: There must be more ways and these two start something for you, hopefully. :)
     
  16. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    I’ve actually been doing a lot of fan art lately, which is part of what’s been giving me plot bunnies. I did this pic of Mira and Ephraim with baby Ezra, and now I’ve got the idea to write a story about them and how they met. [​IMG] but I’m stuck in research and background mode and can’t get myself to get to the part where I write. I started a story for the Louis Armstrong challenge in the the Mini-Games thread and I can’t seem to get myself to continue with it. It’s weird to say that I have a fear of failure, since this is purely a hobby…but that’s kind of how it feels. I’m afraid I’ll start and not be able to keep going. I’m afraid my ideas aren’t good enough, that I won’t be able to do them justice, that it’ll be just more in long queue of unfinished WIPs. I don’t know how to get myself past all the excuses and what-ifs and just write again. :(
     
  17. Thumper09

    Thumper09 Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Dec 9, 2001
    I really like your artwork! :D

    Writing is purely a hobby for me, and I totally have a fear of failure with it. Some of it is simply spillover from my general fear of failure in all aspects of my life, and some of it is because writing is such a personal thing and it's scary for me to put it out into the world. My perfectionism plays a part as well-- if it's not Perfect from the first word I type, then I have Failed and there will be Consequences™. For me, that manifests in not starting or not finishing-- better to not try than to try but fail.

    I have no idea if any of this is what you're experiencing-- this is just what I've dealt with myself as an example which may or may not help. To get past my perfectionism procrastination, I've had to work on convincing myself that my first draft does not have to be Perfect, and that I'm allowed to play with scenes and muddle through sticky plot points and make a complete and utter mess of things in it. Sometimes I argue back and forth with my characters in it. Sometimes I start with a more enjoyable scene to write to get some momentum going, and then go back and fill in other scenes around it. Once I no longer have high expectations for my first draft, some of the pressure comes off. NaNo has been helpful for experimenting with that mindset when it was a foreign concept to me.

    When I hit bumps that don't work out and I need to start again, I try to not think of it as "all that typing was wasted" but more like "that didn't work, and now I know that. What didn't work about it, and how can I fix it?", analyze things, and start again from a more knowledgable place. I have some stories with numerous different abandoned first draft versions before I was able to figure out what I really wanted in it. Some I've gotten halfway through the story and realized I had a main character make a stupid, unrealistic decision back on page 2, and I'd had to scrap everything from that point and try again. Those situations are exceptionally annoying. :p But if I allow my first draft to be play time, it's easier for me to get some sort of beginning, middle, and end figured out and written down, so then it's a matter of polishing or sometimes redoing certain parts.

    I hope you find a way to get your writing flowing again. It's an exceedingly irksome feeling.
     
  18. amidalachick

    amidalachick Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Aug 3, 2003
    Oh, your artwork is beautiful @Raissa Baiard! There's so much love in their expressions, and baby Ezra is adorable. I love it! [face_love]

    [:D][:D][:D][:D]

    Quoting both of these because I can relate to every word.

    I wish I had answers but all I can share is my own experiences. So feel free to ignore any or all of this post!

    Fear - of failure, of success, of any number of Bad Things Happening - is a huge part of it. It might not be a rational or justified fear but it's there and it's absolutely real. And it takes strength and energy to fight that fear. And, speaking for myself here, but sometimes just existing and getting through the day takes all my strength and energy, and there's just nothing left over to fight with.

    I've looked up tons of writing advice, inspirational quotes, and tips for dealing with writer's block and creative anxiety (and anxiety/depression in general). I've tried thinking the story to myself and writing things down with a pen and paper. I've tried talking about some of my ideas and I even got a beta reader for one project. I've tried writing sprints and freewriting. I've even tried breaking out a bottle of wine and just writing. :p None of it has helped in any meaningful or lasting way and even on the rare occasions when I do manage to get something written down and posted I'm not proud of it and I don't feel good about it.

    I wish I did. Because I miss it. I miss having fun and being creative. I still love these characters and these worlds. I still want to write. I want to tell these stories. I just can't.

    The only thing I can suggest, and again this is just my experience and may or may not be useful to anyone else, is to really pay attention to your body and mind and see if there are any triggers that make writing particularly difficult or even a little bit easier. For example (and sorry if this is TMI!) I've learned to not even attempt to write when I have PMS or I'm on the first couple days of my period. I also know that a lot of my issues with writing are tied up with real life issues. And even though I can't do much about the real life issues, sometimes I'm able to mentally step back and go okay, I know I'm not actually the most ****** awful terrible writer ever and I'm not actually hated by everyone who ever read a fanfic, it's just the stress of *real life thing* getting to me and making me anxious. Like, it doesn't help the writing any and it doesn't always work but when it does it at least helps me get some perspective and reminds me that writing is not actually the thing I'm unhappy about, if that makes sense.

    In conclusion: I really hope you find something that works for you and lets you find your words again @Raissa Baiard! Big, big hugs to you and to everyone struggling. [:D][:D]
     
  19. pronker

    pronker Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 28, 2007
    SQUEEEEEEEE fantastic artwork@.@
     
    devilinthedetails likes this.
  20. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 22, 1999
    This. So much this. There will be Consequences and they will be Dire and the Whole Galaxy will know what a terrible writer I am and I will have no choice but to crawl in a hole and die. The end.

    Which doesn’t make a bit of sense when I sit down and think about it, because I would never look at my art the same way. I would never expect to make a finished piece without starting with a rough sketch and building layers onto it—from basic lines to details. I guess I need to reframe the way I think about writing and realize that just like my art, it’s okay to make those messy scribbles because they’re just the starting point.
    Thank you!

    I can relate to this, too. There are days when, by the time I have a moment to sit down, I don’t have anything left. And times when I have been interrupted and disappointed so much that I can’t try to write for fear of the same thing continuing.
    It does; I think for me, not being able to write is just another sign of how Not Normal my life is right now (and has been for a long time).
    Thank you so much! :)

    Thanks you guys for your sympathy and advice; I know it’s not going to be easy to retrain myself out of the mindsets that are keeping me from writing, but I think I need to try so I can reclaim a little bit of normalcy in my otherwise crazy life. Hugs to both of you and MTFBWY [:D] [:D] [:D]
     
  21. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 8

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    @Raissa Baiard what I usually do is write the middle when I'm stuck on the end point, somehow that makes the idea for the end come clearer. And as for you stuff being bleh and meh, it's fanfiction that is keeping my SW love alive.

    I like to think of fanfiction stories like similar to jazz music, which I adore! There's a lot of let's try these combinations and note sequences and let's improvise as we go along [face_laugh] You just know that they didn't get it right the first time, but whew! When I'm sitting there listening to the sweet sounds at the end, it's all good! =D= And when I'm reading your great AUs, I'm thinking, SW with fun, endearing family feels! [face_love]

    And @Thumper09 -- as one who has just finished your Revwien-centric piece, that was VERY well done! [face_dancing]

    [face_laugh] ... Another RL example, I live in a city where the professional sports team is in the rebuilding phase. I know it'll be a while before they're in contention, but I am stoked for the process, for the highs and growth along the way, so I feel like for writers, it works the same... There's no such thing as "wasted effort," it all goes towards the development of the story and one's skillset.

    ^:)^
     
  22. Starith

    Starith Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Apr 5, 2020
    Some people might get out of writer's block / being uninspired by forcing themselves to get words down, but others might benefit by taking breaks, or just doing something different, like another medium or genre. I've been working on a fancomic and I've liked making it more than my attempts at traditional fanfic writing lately. There's more than one way to show your ideas.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2021
  23. amidalachick

    amidalachick Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Aug 3, 2003
    Why We Need To Get Back To Writing With Hope

    I came across this article and thought it might make an interesting topic for discussion. Personally I agree with a lot of the author's points and I might try to share some of my own thoughts when my brain's functional again. :p
     
  24. Briannakin

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

    Registered:
    Feb 25, 2010
    Interesting. I'm trying to formulate my thoughts. I think I agree... kinda. We still do have some current Sci-Fi that isn't super dark and gritty... the whole point of Star Trek: Lower Decks is that it doesn't take itself seriously. But yeah, mainstream sci-fi/fantasy/media in general definitely has this trend towards darker, cynical stories (not everything but I'm currently trying to get into two of the biggest recent hits: Game of Thrones and Handmaiden's Tale. While the stories are compelling. FRACK they are depressing! Most of the major hits of the last 5 years I can think of have been darker in tone: Stranger Things is another good example). And when I want to rewatch something, I typically want something fun and uplifting. There's nothing wrong with some good catharsis or being enthralled in drama... but life can be depressing enough as it is.

    And I think that can be applied to fanfic too. I'm all for getting out some angst - I love me some marital disagreements and hospital room scenes, but there's a reason why that genre is often referred to hurt/comfort. there often is that warm, snuggly moment. But there's also pure fluff and happy endings that can be so much fun to read and write
     
  25. pronker

    pronker Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 28, 2007
    I enjoyed the article and learning that the address code .za means South Africa!. GoT doesn't appeal to me because Youngest told me lots about it already; Lower Decks and The Mandalorian do appeal and one of these days ... I'll carve out some time to watch an ep or two. :) About Darker and Edgier (as TVTropes calls the phenomenon of 'hook 'em with sweet, break their hearts later with angst'), yes, it sure seems authors need to be lighthearted, but perhaps they've forgotten how? A show that wasn't exactly Sci-Fi I really liked was Marvel: Agents of Shield and as seasons progressed, ~Dark was the writers' watchword, hooboy. :(

    As a youngling, I liked action shows with plenty of action, or monsters, what have you and many ensemble casts included a comic relief character. Gosh, I couldn't wait until they got out of the scene so my heroes could get to what they did best: defeating dastardly foes. Now at maturity which is debatable, I relish the lighthearted touches, characters, and scenes.