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Monday, April 24, 2006

Stross On 1st, 2nd and 3rd Person Style

Acclaimed SF writer Charles Stross has posted an essay on the perspective-problem in fiction writing:
"Conjugate Characters, Not Verbs"

Authors and would-be authors take note: Stross analyzes one of the most difficult stylistic issues ANY writer can come up against. I wholeheartedly recommend his essay.

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And now for something completely different...

I love satire and parody, but I don't like "fan-fiction". I think it's a ******* immature thing to do. Grownups should not write fanfiction; if they are so ******* eager to be writers, they can ******* make up their own original ******* characters.

And now I read about this sad, sad, sad, sad... sad person who not only wrote her own fan-fiction novel set in the STAR WARS universe... but also published it on Amazon.com.

Someone called it an act of "weapons-grade stupidity". That pretty much sums it up, no?

Why do these things happen? I like to think that people are, on the whole, fairly sane. But apparently insanity can strike anyone, at any time. There you are, walking down the street with a clear eye and a sharp mind... and POW! you fall and hit your head.

When you wake up, dazed and confused, you find yourself possessed by a single hypnotizing notion: "I am INSPIRED! I must write a fan-fiction novel and readers will love it because I am so INSPIRED!"

Do not confuse "obsessed" with "inspired".

And don't even try to defend yourself with Special Pleading: "Yeah, of course I know about copyright and all that... but MY fanfic is different! It's as good as the original, in fact!" (Yadda yadda...)

ADDENDUM:
1. Robin Hobb explains why she is opposed to fanfiction.

2. A huge discussion about fanfiction over at Making Light.

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