A Wolf in Skinny Jeans Seeks FF w/ Heart… And Good Grammar… Must Enjoy Nerdiness & Words

I love fan fiction.

Actually, if technically you assumed I’m totally and completely addicted and obsessed, you’d be closer to the truth. I like many of the stories I’ve read better than the original work that inspired them.

come-play-with-me

It started with a vampire named Eric Northman, and a little fairy hybrid that made his silent heart flutter. Then the author pulled a shotgun loaded with silver shrapnel from under her petticoats and killed everything she’d set up over the last decade and proceeded to skate around in the bloody guts of my allegiance whilst singing “It’s Raining Men.” (Yeah, SVM fans, you know what I’m talking about. Your guts were there too.) Thirteen years of story… bombed with a wish.

Not that CH hadn’t upset me many times before, she had. Masterfully crafted characters were suddenly different from one book to the next, with blatant contradictions to previous books thrown in whenever it suited the new one, but one thing remained constant: Eric Northman was an incredible character. I still can’t decide if it was a fluke, or skill, but the nuances enraptured me.

So after After Dead, I was reading reviews on Amazon just to confirm that others were as outraged by the waste of time and money that the series devolved into (I’m not a bitter or angry person, but reading is my favourite and… just, no, Charlaine Harris, no,) when I came across a review with brilliant things to say about the series, and a recommendation for a fan inspired re-work of the series’ end called Dead on the Crossroads, by GoddessD.

eric-northman-37627914339

Now, I’ve had theatre friends reading and loving Twilight and Harry Potter fanfic for years, but since vampires don’t sparkle in the sun (they burn! come on now!) and HP is so sacred a work in my life that I’ve needed to ink its importance into my skin in a permanent way, fanfic was always a step too far in my snobby-literature-needs-a-proper-publisher brain.

But. I. Was. WROOOOOONG. Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, and I have zero problem saying it.

Reading Dead on the Crossroads changed the game completely. I was hooked. Blown away by the underground talent. It felt like the first time someone played me music by my favourite inde rock band. I couldn’t believe how raw and powerful it could be. Popularity didn’t matter, what mattered were the themes explored. And they could make me think and stay with me for days!

Maybe it was a ‘right head-place at the right time’ since my disappointment with CH was bordering outrage and Winds of Winter wouldn’t be out until, well, whenever George RR Martin puts it out, and I’d literally gone through every book I owned at least twice (including the bedside stack of ‘I want to read these because they cost next-to-nothing at the used book shop,’) but after I flew through that first one, I found myself greedily devouring more and more and more, branching into other genres and fandoms until I felt an urge that I tried for many years of late to ignore.

I had my own story to tell.

Strike that. I had a story to tell about characters that were not my own. First time ever that’s happened to me!

Again, I rebelled. I couldn’t write fan fiction! Nooooo. I had at least four other unfinished novels or scripts on my hard drive that had been neglected for years. If I started an EN story, I’d never finish it anyway, so what was the point? And work often saps my creativity with its demands on my muse and the drudgery of nit-picking grammar; history would only repeat itself and why would anyone want to read my writing anyway? I’m no one. I don’t have a body of existing work that others love, nor am I socially active or connected on FF forums. Even if I told my story, no one would care.

I just ignored it. I let the plot bunnies use my head as a warren for months until I had to get a little out for closure on the story that had so disappointed me. I needed Sookie to write a letter to Eric.

So I did.

And I couldn’t stop.

I wrote for three months in my spare time (it was always in the middle of the night, or when I was alone in the office at work, shhhh, I am a very diligent employee most of the time, but when the words come, they come.)

ElevenShenanigans

I still don’t know what possessed me to first publish it on Fanfiction.net. I usually stay as private as possible in my day to day. I don’t chat on the phone, I rarely use social media, I don’t go out with work colleagues, I find even writing to others directly very hard, and even in my little village, no one really knows me as anything other than the lady that smiles at everyone but doesn’t talk much. I’ve had the same five besties all my life (though I’ve moved far away and we rarely see each other now) and in the last ten years of singledom, I’ve dated three people. Well, dated sort of. Went on dates with. Only one with regularity and that was over as soon as it got serious more quickly than I was ready for. In other words I’m shy. Introverted in an extreme way. And shy. There’s a difference. And I’m both. So publishing Dead and the DescendantΒ was scary and I’d never have done it if I wasn’t assured my anonymity. WolvesHaveReturned became my safety blanket and quasi-superhero alias. In anonymity, I could be a woman with courage. I could be a wolf that howled to the moon and let her voice be heard by members of her fandom pack across the globe.

And you know what?

Somehow, you heard me.

I’d been silent and wandering for years, and you heard me within months of finally finding my voice.

And I don’t regret it. I don’t think I could even go back if I wanted to. I’ve never had the support and encouragement (and from total strangers with zero obligation to me or my feelings!) that I’ve gotten over the last year. It’s incredible and a little bewildering. I’m constantly unsure whether I should retreat a bit more back into my safety zone, or come out a little further and interact. So I’m timidly taking steps away from my cave if only to say:

Thank you.

Thank you for the bright spot in my life that I had no idea was missing.

Thank you to the writers who have given me hours/weeks/months of joy with your work.

Thank you to the betas who keep OCD editors from going barmy with typo obsessions or grammatical misguidance, and the support and encouragement they give to their authors that keeps them giving us new stories to read.

Thank you to the readers, whether silent-ne’er-reviewers, encouraging, outspoken, skeptical, or gushing, genius demands audience in any medium and the more you read, the more I can read too.

Thank you to the fandom devotees that take time out of their lives to moderate, compile, build, and direct websites that allow us direct access to fics, pics, memes, humor, forums, each other, and all manner of media.

Thank you.

I’m so grateful for what you’ve all brought into my life.

I’ll keep howling if you will.

Photomanipulation___Wolf_Howl_by_MillenniumSnow

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10 comments on “A Wolf in Skinny Jeans Seeks FF w/ Heart… And Good Grammar… Must Enjoy Nerdiness & Words

  1. Well, hello Deja vu!
    Boy, did you take the words out of my mouth or what AND in a more elegant manner than I could ever had? πŸ™‚ I too am extra secluded and just like you I’m very shy (well in my case probably it leans toward insecurity, but I’m sure you get the drift). So here I am to tell you that you are not alone in your journey to try and change your ways. A week ago I would have read your post, but never comment only click the β€˜like’ button and had it been two weeks ago I wouldn’t even have done that 😦 Because why would you care what I think?
    But since we are trying to break out of usual comfort zone I wanted to reach out and offer you my *meek support: if you ever want help with anything, bounce SVM/TB ideas, shoot the breeze, whatever, feel free to contact me πŸ™‚
    ps. I’m only on ch. 6 of Dead and the Descendant, since I found you t/ WYBA and had to stop reading until I finish my chapter or I’m afraid I was going to plagiarize your work πŸ™‚ Hey, I said I didn’t, so no need to report me πŸ™‚
    Anywho, keep up the good work!!
    – one of your many newfound fans
    M

    Liked by 2 people

    • Your support is incredible and makes such a difference to me, so please don’t feel like it’s anything less than priceless! Thank you. Thank you so, so much. I love your work as well, and your voice is unique, gritty, smart, and fun. The same offer stands here, if you ever need a beta, someone to use as a sounding board, or support of any kind, SVM/TB related or not, I’d be honoured to give it!! It’s a gift to meet like-minded people and I know how hard it is when you’re an introvert or shy or self-doubting, or all three! It feels amazing to find I’m not alone. πŸ™‚
      We can take baby steps together to make it easier!
      -T

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh, and …
    ps.ps. Please don’t hold my typos or poor grammar against me, I promise I’m not a bad person.
    Trying my hardest here, but ever since Eric found out that he can pester me about how to ‘better’ write his character by talking to me in a couple of languages, I can’t seem to shut him up and then something always seems to get lost in translation:( But as long as he keeps talking to me I am happy to keep apologizing for MY inadequacies, as he is found to say πŸ™‚ Ok, time for me to leave you alone, till later I hope…
    M

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, gaaad! I promise I’m not a grammar nazi! Well… maybe a little, but rest assured, you’ve given me no cause to cringe! It’s funny, I think SVM has an audience that is very conscientious when it comes to language in general! I’m regularly impressed with our authors’ abilities! My other major fandom… weeeelll… maybe it’s just a younger crowd? And the irony is that it’s Doctor Who. Sookie and Co. are from the Boonies and she self-educated on genre novels. The Doctor is an alien super-genius and SVM tends to be better-written.
      Anyway, I love the way you write. I can’t tell you that enough! Don’t let the Viking bully you too much! Or do, actually, because it’s working, lol!
      Seriously, you’re awesome!
      -T

      Liked by 1 person

      • So, since we are making a conscious effort to not be shy, here is my deed for the day. πŸ™‚
        I have a story to share and I thought you will probably enjoy it, or I hope you do and I’m not just annoying you with my dorkiness… (*see insecurities, they are such a nuisance)
        So, I did my Eric sent me by going down the list of my all time favorite writers and GoddessD happens to be one of them. Imagine my surprise when I got a Thank You msg back from her. Yes, I sure as heck did a happy dance in celebration. LOL

        tag you’re it πŸ™‚

        M

        Liked by 1 person

      • Lol! I love it!! That’s awesome!! I should let her know what she started for me! It’s seriously my vice now and I couldn’t be happier about it!
        Okay, I’m inspired and feeling a bit courageous, so I’m going to follow your example and let my all time fav’s know how they’ve inspired me!
        *Will. Not. Fangirl. And. Embarass. Self.*
        Well… Probably. Maybe. Ish. Okay, yeah, I will… but that’s okay, right? It’s about support and can’t do that without speaking up. Getting type-happy with the praise is just par for the course. πŸ˜‰
        -T

        Like

  3. I started my fanfic reading when BtVS went off air. I found some buffyverse by Christopher Golden and through the reviews I saw ppl referring to stuff written by unpublished authors and thought “huh” and I’ve been hooked ever since. I went straight from Buffy to SVM/TB (Buffy fic kinda died out). after the recent shakeup in this fandom, I realized my silent-stalker-reading wasn’t helping give you writers and betas and bannermakers any incentive to continue so I am changing that behavior and I started with the latest YWBawards. I have left comments on everything I’ve read and I haven’t found anyone lacking in talent. Thank you for putting your hard work out here for me (and everyone) to read and enjoy and escape the drudges of everyday life for just a little while. ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you!! Honestly, whether or not I receive likes or comments, every time I see views to any of my stories, I get a wave of utter bliss. Any support you give beyond reading is like icing (and edible ball bearings) on the cake. It can only make it that much more special, but it’s just wonderful that you’re out there and consuming it! I’m with you in feeling altogether grateful for the writers who bring us such a wonderful light and refuge from the daily grind. I know I’ve had many days when all I wanted was for the day to be over so I could curl up in bed with something fluffy and lemony or gripping and dark or whatever was new and intriguing at the top of the search list. Thank you for reading mine and your praise, but mostly thank you for your support of others because the more you encourage, the more we all have to read in the end. That’s the best! (And I LOVE BTVS! Anything Joss Whedon really, but I’d never have given any vamps a chance beyond Halloween costumes if it hadn’t been for Buffy. You have excellent taste!)
      Thank you again for all that you’re doing for the fandom.
      -T

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I just want to say only one thing: I’m very grateful for every single ff writer cuz with creativity and FREE TIME,they give us wonderful stories that make our day! I
    personally started reading ff after Dead Reckoning of the SVM.I knew that CH wasn’t giving us a HEA for favorite couple . I don’t think this fandom is dying, I think many of the readers are shy so they don’t leave reviews or in the case of YWBA they forgot to nominate their favorite stories and wriyers.
    That happened to me last year…I had lots of things to do between a job, household chores three kids that I simply forgot! ( But I did vote!)
    But I’m always here amongst many readers…
    Please continue writing…
    Take care
    Jackie69

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, I wholeheartedly agree! One of the beautiful things about FF is the commitment writers make to telling their stories in spite of commitments and obligations on their time and energies. They aren’t getting any compensation so the reward is really in the doing of the thing and the sharing. It’s special. It connects us through mutual interest and gives us a window into the way others approach life.
      Your support through readership is invaluable! I’m sure most authors would agree with me that they’d take that any day over all the votes and nominations in the world, and just the fact that you have kids and a life you juggle every day and you still take the time to leave feedback and support means everything. And, oh, I understand! My sons are a little older now which frees up my time considerably, but I still can’t go into the toilet and shut the door without someone wanting my attention. Thank you for being you and doing what you do. Raising kids is hard full stop, but it really is wonderful to know that good thoughtful people are teaching leading by example to the next generations.
      Is that a weird thing to say? I don’t know. I just know I like knowing nice people have kids.
      Shutting it now. Lol
      Thank you again!
      -T

      Liked by 1 person

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