Categories
Reviews

Fanfic Is

Fanfic is whatever you make it out to be. You cannot claim a whole genre of literature is bad: not romance, not sci fi, not fantasy, not contemporary. There will always be gems, no matter where you go, you merely need the tools to find them.

I personally slam on Disney for fanfictioning themselves to death. But, fanfiction does have a place. Here are three things you would learn if you took two seconds and two braincells and fanficked around a little on a Saturday afternoon.

Passion. Sometimes the hardest thing about writing is finding what you’re passionate about. And getting past all that initial worldbuilding and character building can be a really huge hurdle for some people. So why not start with a world already built, with characters already made. If it’s the way to start, you should start there. Cause you already have passion with regards to those characters. You’re already invested in what happens to them. So, you fanfic.

A heavy dose of “this is the life of an author” which can be many things. People might never read what your write. People might read what you write. Both are terrible, more terrible than finding half a fly in your spaghettis. You have to live with the knowledge that you probably already ate one half of the fly, and that this fly has probably touched every strand of spaghetti you’re about to eat. Anyhow, people reading what you write is just as terrifying as people never reading what you write. Because people, we’re more judicious than crows.

We will all write something bad. Perhaps the last miserable thing you wrote was a project from third grade, oh you gifted soul. But for most of us, we will write poorly-stitched-up bodies of text for a very long time. And you have to live with that. And so does everyone else. So, if it is bad, that’s how it is. Fanfic is. All that it is. And not all of it will be bad. So just write it already.

I call back to an earlier post of mine where I wish there were clearer ways to share and share alike in the literary world. We have such strict rules for images, surely a book is a type of written image too? Anyhow, the rules aren’t clear. And if anything they’re quite murky to the inexperienced. If Disney wrote fanfics and then rewrote worse versions of those fanfics, then why should you not as well?

Categories
Reviews

Disney is Fanfic

Hot take: Disney remakes are fanfic.

Let me tell you why.

Who in Disney isn’t aspiring to the glory of those good old classics? Those money busters. Those idea exploders. And those story spinners. The original Disney had their issues. But I loved them (don’t know about you). Fan fiction is written by a fan of the original movie.

Looking at interviews with the directors that remade these movies, they really do have a whole lot of love for those classics. You can see it. But, love isn’t enough to carry a corporate. We loved those classics too, and that’s why we’re falling prey to the Disney machine. The machine that wants to pump us full of old ideas different but not better. The fans have passion, but they make sweeping gestures at the plots we remember. With shaking hands they sketch for us, but we are craving Zdzisław Beksiński. Or maybe not, this is Disney, after all.

Disney uses the same characters to tell you a new story. Part of the appeal of fanfic is to build on old knowledge. If you can pull on old ideas, you have less explaining to do and you can focus more on the conversation you want to have with your viewers. For some that means having known characters act out your fantasies. For Disney it’s sanitizing anything questionable from their prior media. Have they added anything interesting to the conversation? Anything new? Anything compelling?

If you’ve seen it, tell me. So far I’ve found myself disappointed, but maybe I missed something.

They’re pulling on old characters and putting them in new patterns. These Disney remakes are nothing but culturally accepted fanfic. And tell me why we’re slamming fanfic when we’re filling our own heads with the stuff every day. Disney rewrites us something, but is it any better? Or just different? Or maybe worse?

Well, only you can really judge that.

Categories
Friends Merch Publications Reviews writing

My Patreon

Maybe you’ve seen some posts on here you’ve enjoyed and wish that you had more content like this on your website? Or, perhaps you just want to finally see me writing some fantasy (since I’m probably all talk and no action, right.)? Or, maybe you wanna read snippets from my current works? You’re welcome to hop onto my patreon which I’m just now starting in earnest.

I’ve got the lowest tier set to a dollar. So, for only a dollar a month you can read some experiments in writing and get story prompts. Every little bit helps and I hope that you can pitch in to participate in this journey.

If I still haven’t convinced you, that’s fair. But, if I have? Well, go ahead and hop over to my Patreon. I’m sure it’ll be a fun time if nothing else since you’ll probably find yourself reaching into the outer fringes of Patreon existence by the time you realize the time.

Thanks for your continued support.

Categories
Reviews

Harrow the Ninth Review

Review: 'Harrow The Ninth,' By Tamsyn Muir : NPR

Lesbian necromancers in space continues to amaze.

This book didn’t pull any punches and had me silently screaming from page one.

After reading Gideon the Ninth it was a very anxious month waiting for the release of the sequel, Harrow the Ninth. And when it arrived, I devoured it. Because it was excellent.

First of all, all that was promised with the world-building in book one continued to expand in book two. Some threads began coming together while others were introduced. Either way, the momentum is still picking up and I expect it will continue into the third book as well.

It will take some re-reading to capture the full scope of all the information. This is because of the book’s format, which I loved as well. The presentation strengthened the arc of the characters, but made it difficult at times to know which pieces of information were important (honestly, most of them were important; Muir is fantastic at weaving in plot important information).

The tension is present throughout as you, as the reader, are unsure but think you know more than the characters. It propels the plot forward, faster and faster. And as the pieces fall into place, you wait in anticipation for the plot to unfold only to be left with a dry mouth as your eyes skim over the final words in the novel.

And… you’re left wanting more. As I said at the start of this article, Muir pulls no punches. This book tugs at your heartstrings in all the best of ways. And, how many months is it again until book three is released?

Categories
Reviews

A Difficult Read

I’m currently reading a book which I hope to finish by the end of this week. Unfortunately, I’m having a tough time finishing it. I just wanna take a moment and talk about why this book has me dragging my feet.

So, I would like to exclude the title of this book for now because it might still blow my socks off. Although, you might already know the title if you read my reading list post previously. This book might yet turn things around and surprise me. Also, this book is by no means all bad. In fact, I first want to talk about what this book has right.

The World-building Is Great

The world building of the book is both curious and compelling. The book deals with an individual caught up in a coma dream. The world of dreams is explained in depth and seems to run alongside our own. Also, the ability to see or influence dreams is tied into real-world history for explanations. So, this books seems almost urban fantasy, but with a much younger protag than a YA book would be sporting. I am definitely curious to see what will happen and what impact the world of dreams can have.

The Stakes Are Set

It was relatively late for my taste, but the stakes were set clearly in around chapter 9 (I believe). The main issue is that the parent fears that the protags will die if they enter the world of dreams. So, the parent is doing their best to keep them out of the world of dreams. Motivations have been set.

The Issues

All that being said, I have 2 large issues with the text so far. Issue number one is that there are a lot of pieces of information given in the way of info-dumps. That wouldn’t be terrible if this was a book focused on adults. After all, as an adult myself, I can read through a well placed info-dump. However. It seems like the target audience is children, based on the ages of the protags, and there are just so many info dump scenes for that to be the case.

My second issue runs along with the first. The second beef I have with this book is that there is far too much telling and not nearly enough showing. Perhaps these are the same thing, but to me they are slightly different. You can have a dialogue-based info-dump and still have a lot of action prose surrounding those statements. However, in this book, not only do the dialogues take up paragraphs, the surrounding paragraphs don’t show me anything about the world. It feels empty. Like I’m expected to know exactly what the world looks like. There’s no sound descriptions, or smells, or other details. It feels bland.

Not Finished Yet

Like I said previously, this story could still wow me away. I’m nowhere near finished with it yet. However, if things continue as they have, this book is likely to be an amazing conceptual work that falls short on execution. I’m still enjoying it, though.

Have you ever read a book where you enjoyed the concept but felt the execution fell short?