OT/Gary Stu (fanfic definition query)

Sally Odgers sodgers at tassie.net.au
Tue Jun 25 08:20:24 EDT 2002

> As for leaving fan fiction alone and writing something "original"...
> well, would you make that complaint if they were writing historical
> fiction?  Because in one sense that's what fanfic is; it's just that the
> "history" in which it's set is an imaginary one.

Oh yes, I do make the same complaint with historicals! I'm not at all a fan
of bringing in the Prince of Wales or Rasputin as a major or viewpoint
character in a novel. Mentioning them as scene setting is fine, but oh -
make up your own characters... if only because you won't be hogtied by their
actual fates.

Geoffrey Trease got it Right... he used historical personages, but they were
secondary to the ones he invented.

It's not the same when someone uses fairytale... (Like Beauty and Rose
Daughter, or DWJ's F&H) because the versions can be so different; that's
taking a situation or setting.

Two final comments on my (personal - don't forget I'm not saying I'm
*right*, just that it's my opinion) rejection of the idea of fanfic;

1.   Most writers (the one's I've read...) don't get it right. They make
characters I know and like talk or act out of character. ... I make an
honorable exception of an SG1 fanfictionist whose url I'll give anyone

2.   I just kind of think it's a waste to write something you can't sell or
"publish" in any normal way. I feel the same way about accomplished
singer-songwriters who record covers of songs written by others...  I feel
the same way about paint-by-numbers and embroider-over-patterns and painters
who only ever paint copies of existing pictures.  And yes, I know that's
very stupid of me. I do embroidery sometimes, and I make up my own designs.
They are very bad, and very badly executed because I have two left hands.
However, they are *me*.

I think we've had this spiel from me before, actually, so I'll now get back
into my box... and don't forget that url if you want to read the exception
that (I think) proves the rule!


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