this is gonna be weird

Paul Andinach pandinac at
Mon Nov 22 21:44:21 EST 2004

On Mon, 22 Nov 2004, Ika wrote:

> I disagree with Paul (I think it was Paul - apologies if not) that
> calling *published* novels using other people's characters
> "fanfiction" broadens the term beyond usefulness.

Yes, it's me you're thinking of - but that's not quite what I meant.
What I meant to say was that calling *all* published novels using
other people's characters "fanfiction" broadens the term beyond
usefulness - emphasis on 'all', not on 'published'. Some pnuopc
obviously are fanfiction, but others clearly aren't: the specific
example I had in mind was a Star Trek tie-in novel that the author is
known to have written solely in order that her first original novel
would qualify for the attention of publishers that only accepted the
work of established authors.

> Ob DWJ: I felt like Cat and Tonino were much younger in *Stealer of
> Souls* than they were in *Charmed Life* and *Magicians of Caprona*,
> and I still haven't quite puzzled that out yet (what do other people
> think about it, btw?)

I don't know. Is it related to them being amnesic and befuddled for
most of the story, or do they seem younger in the beginning as well?

> (2) Teabags (and here I get back on topic!). Paul wrote:
> > They're both [spontaneous sequels and commissioned sequels] cases
> > of reusing teabags, perhaps, but one is reusing a teabag because
> > they believe it still has a good cuppa left in it, while the other
> > is reusing the teabag because they want a cup made with that
> > particular teabag and don't care about the quality of the result.
> > Or something.
> The trouble with the 'teabag' metaphor, I think, is that it suggests
> that fanfiction is always going to be the same as the original, but
> weaker.

I was going to add that good spontaneous sequels don't *just* use the
original teabag, but add new ingredients and create something new and
different (while commissioned sequels, I suppose, want exactly the
same taste and don't care if it's weaker); but I couldn't quite get it
to work within the metaphor.

> F'rex, I know very little about the Norse Gods, and I didn't
> understand 8DL for years; I still don't have a clue who the lady in
> the flames is or what the ending is about.

Apropos of nothing whatever, the first ever Australian production of
'The Ring of the Nibelung' is running this month; one of my friends is
going to see it, and has been excited for most of the year. There was
a news report on the telly that said that the sets (which include an
enormous water curtain and a great big ring of fire) were designed and
built by the same group that were responsible for the Olympic Cauldron
at the Sydney Olympics.

"Hold fast to the one noble thing."

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