It all started one night in January, at the start of 2002. I was reading one night in the Dragonball Z section of FanFiction.net, checking over all of the songfics and realizing more by the second that all of the stories at the time were more or less completely focused on two aspects:
1) Cheesy music(boybands and such)
2) Cheesy scenery
Usually these stories at the time tended to focus more so on the song rather than the story, and I thought to myself, "Gee, I can do better than that, can`t I?" It was around the time my confidence had started to wane in my own writing ability, the Alternates series had basically flopped and I had lost interest in Next In Line, Dark Future and another series of stories called No Hiding Place, and at the time I was also just beginning to experiment with HTML format in my stories.
About three tries later, I had made up my mind after a vigorous dosage of the then-new Linkin Park major debut CD, Hybrid Theory. At the time I was looking for both a title, and a list of songs that wouldn`t overwrite the story or take away from it at the same time, and after a while I stumbled across the first five songs of the entire series, and as I listened to them, the basic storyline of what became the first of a series of action/adventure stories formed in my head.
I was going to set out to try and re-write a genre in a way I hadn`t even seen anyone other than the Mirai Shock crew try doing, and in a way I`ve only seen two other people(Kami and Zinou) try to do since, and whether or not I succeeded is more or less up to the people who read the stories and made up their minds for themselves.
By the end of writing Hybrid Theory, I had the songfic bug biting me in the ass several times over, even as I got my first review from a person named Meesh, praising my abilities as an author, followed by two reviews from someone named Phillip, the second of which demanded the sequel that was begging me to be written. Then came the last boost I needed to start forming the idea when Azazelgirl left me a review that helped me feel vindicated in my feelings of what a songfic should be.
Four major sequels and seven side stories later, that last boost I got, combined with a good deal of help along the way from the reviewers who read and contributed their own ideas and thoughts on the story and potential ideas for it`s future, helped me to bolster my own confidence in my writing ability, and further my ability to tell a story without feeling like I was unable to do so properly.
All I have to say, to put it simply, is that by the end of it all, I felt damn good. The fact that several of my own favorite authors put down positive reviews for the series certainly helped that fact, and even those that didn`t and instead just stuck me on their favorites, or stuck one of the stories onto their favorites, helped me to continue on, regardless of those few people who weren`t satisfied and decided to openly show it through a review.
In the end, I guess it was all worth while. It let me play out some of the scenes I had craved doing(Cell/Bojack-era Gohan against Dabura, Gohan vs Piccolo, Goten`s Embodiment, the Cell Junior battle, Gotenks` Lunar Bowling Ball, Warble and a good many others stand out above the rest), pull out twists that I had hidden from the start(Rei and Yuuichirou being Videl`s parents, with Yuuichirou eventually becoming Hercule), others that came along the way but were either blaringly obvious or impossible to detect depending on how close one paid attention to the details(The SM/DBZ connection, Bojack and Goten, Jun-Yah) and other storylines that were just well placed and fit in with the rest of the series.
Now it`s all over though, and I`m proud of it. I`ve succeeded in pulling off a series of top-notch(don`t mind my ego for once) action/adventure series, even dashing in a smidget of romance on the side without resorting to cheap cop-outs like just saying the characters did this or that during those six-seven years from the Cell Games to the Buu Saga, brought in a strong female character(Zangya) without turning her into a cheap side romance with one of the main characters, held off on having to do a lemon to get more people to read, held off on holding the story hostage for reviews like a shithead and held it true to itself, maintaining every character to some extent or another and even putting aside my fanatical, raving hatred of a few cliches in the process.
All I have to say to everyone who read, whether you liked it or not and whether you reviewed or not, thanks. Thanks for reading, thanks for even realizing it existed and thanks for checking out a songfic that sought to break the mold.
To those who inspired me, I thank you deeply. To the people at Mirai Shock, thanks for showing that it was possible to do a songfic that didn`t adhere to a crappy romance with no action, to DragonessEclectic and DoraMouse, thanks for proving that it was possible to combine existing mythology into a story or try and make your own to flow with it(not to mention the ideas the Character Compendium gave me/lead me to create on my own), to Flirtatious Flamingo, thanks for showing that it`s possible to write a DBZ/SM crossover without sucking ass(though I probably failed that with Evolution, but what the heck...), and to The Rev., thanks for proving that it was possible to bring a story down into Hell and have it come off as worth a god damn.
To the reviewers, good and bad, thanks just as deeply. Without you, none of this would have ever happened because I`d`ve likely lost interest in it all shortly after the EP for Redux. To those who read and/or reviewed almost all of the fics in the series, especially the ones who kept with it whenever they possibly could, I especially thank you guys. More than anyone else, you kept the story going, because up until Evolution and probably even after that, these things wrote themselves.
I just did the typing.
And that`s all I have.
With this series over though, I`m now free to pursue other things. Right now I`m working on a novel in the Zoids section called New Age, and I may even consider doing a sequel to the HT series some day, but in truth I feel it might be time to dig out some of my older works and polish them off with the kind of writing I can pull off now, without rushing and without trying to mish-mash them into the original story of the series, heedless of how it should`ve been.
And speaking of HT sequels, there were actually a good many I had planned. A five parter dubbed Ecclectic, another that I briefly referenced in the series EP involving Gohan`s death and Pan`s birth among other things(I may still do it, really... Not sure though), another five parter I had planned was a look into the harsh world that Mirai Goten and Bra came from, a world that might have been had some things gone differently from the main HT series timeline, but none of those will probably ever happen. Ecclectic, I got to working on and realized it just wouldn`t work, while the five parter about Mirai Goten and Bra was just too different from the rest. There was also the five parter I had planned for, to be dubbed Reanimation, but I`m not sure if that`ll happen either since it was originally planned to take place between OP and Generations.
As it stands, this series is officially over. Probably permanently but that`s almost up in the air, I`m not sure, but either way I intend on working through New Age first, then possibly doing a G Gundam fic. It`s time for me step away from this one and let it have it`s long overdue rest, because the story has ended on a good enough note as is, and who knows...
Maybe some day I`ll enlighten you as to who won the last battle between Cell and Gohan, eh? Or any of the other things I`ve left unresolved for that matter.
I guess this can only mean one thing now that I`ve finished wasting time rambling, and that is....
So long and see ya next time!