1. daemon

    daemon Contributing Member Contributor

    Jun 16, 2014
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    Just a guy on a mission

    Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by daemon, Jun 18, 2014.

    I never wanted to be a creative author. I still do not. I do not like to write fiction and I do not like any of the fiction that I have ever forced myself to write. I am majoring in computer science in college and I plan to develop software for a living. Mathematics is my primary passion and I plan to spend my free time studying the subject and hopefully doing my own research.

    However, there is a novel that I want to write. Right now, I care about seeing this novel to completion more than I have cared about any other project I have ever started. If I write it, then it will purely be a labor of love: a free-time project uploaded to the public domain with the sole goal that as many people read it and enjoy it as possible. After that, I just want to be done with creative writing. I never want to touch the commercial publishing industry if I can avoid it.

    I recently read a novel that instantly became my all-time favorite fictional story. I like it for its themes and its character development. Ever since then, I have felt conflicted about the fact that it is my favorite story. It is a fanfic from a community that does not get much respect from the outside (though I certainly respect the community), and this book in particular is written sloppily. I have read plenty of classic literature, I readily admit that the classics are higher quality, and I want to enjoy the classics more than I enjoy fan fiction, but every time I try to get myself excited about any given classic, my mind just wanders back to the themes, characters, and mental images in my favorite story.

    How much respect would you have for someone who says his favorite story is a My Little Pony fanfic by shortskirtsandexplosions? More or less respect than for someone whose favorite story is Fifty Shades of Grey? Would you even give him a chance to explain why he likes it so much? Like any human being, I deeply value the conversations I have with people about fictional stories that are meaningful to us. It is important to me that I can talk to anyone about my favorite story and not have the conversation devolve into "but why ponies?"

    So I thought: instead of wallowing in shame and wishing that the author would have developed the premise differently, why not write my own version of the story? Then I could tell people that my favorite story is a work of historical fiction set in ancient Athens (the setting I am considering), rather than a fanfic set in Ponyville. See the difference? More importantly, though, I want the ideas addressed by the book to reach a universal audience. I exist to serve humanity, and right now, I think this is one of the most effective ways that I can carry out that service. And by including a shout-out to the story that inspired me in a foreword or afterword or something, I would do a service to the original author by increasing his exposure. (Readership is pretty much the exclusive currency of the fan fiction community.)

    So that is why I am here. I am on a mission to turn a My Little Pony fanfic into a work of quality literature. I have tried for the past two years to talk myself out of it, hoping that "ponefic" is just a passing phase in my life. I guess it is impossible to outgrow true passion. I am not even confident that I have the skill to improve upon what has already been written, but I have to try.
    cynthia_1968 likes this.
  2. cynthia_1968

    cynthia_1968 Active Member

    Jun 18, 2014
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    Amsterdam, the Netherlands
    It's always nice to know that I'm not the only programmer struggling with fiction ;-)


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