Author has written 2 stories for Naruto, and Elder Scroll series.
Note: I just now noticed my latest story update wasn't spell-checked, so I swapped it out for a spell-checked version. Sorry to anyone who gets alerted again thinking there's a new installment!
(Updating, just to clean it up, folks!)
I hardly know what to say in this profile yet, but not knowing what to say rarely stops me from talkin'!
With few exceptions I only read/write in Naruto fanfiction. I enjoy other settings, but to me they've been 'fleshed out', such as Star Wars, Harry Potter, Star Trek, etc. Does that make sense? I don't hate on those stories, but just for me personally it feels like there's no 'room' for me to wriggle around in.
With Naruto, things are different. It's an ongoing story, which gives me freedom to project into the future without seriously bumping up against story events which may be really enjoyable. Also it's a manga, which means I have a lot of room to wriggle around in the space left over, stuff that doesn't get explained or explored due to the limitations of the format.
My favorite stories are stories in which the characters deal with moral and ethical conflicts. I also enjoy historical fiction stories, or stories that have a 'realistic' flavor to them. Stories in which the characters aren't the only story, they're inhabitants in a larger setting as well which if done correctly is compelling in its own right. Robin Hobb's many books are an excellent example of this. Another favorite of mine is Lois McMaster Bujold's Vorkorsigan stories. I also very much enjoy James Clavell, early Orson Scott Card, Timothy Zahn, George RR Martin, and too many other authors to remember right now. Complex characters and difficult choices are a hallmark of the kinds of stories I enjoy.
To me Naruto is a complex character, even in canon. While he's not presented as very complex-and neither is anyone else, really, the limitations of language and the manga medium-the story Naruto does a good job of implying complexity, and for me at least, getting the reader to think about it. Why in the hell does Naruto still want to protect Konoha? I mean, I look at myself, and I'm forced to admit that if it was me, I'd probably have been a missing-nin as soon as I could manage it, or outright despise Konoha. Gaara's reaction to hatred is much less complex; his reasoning in the chuunin exams about killing everyone but himself and 'feeling' is complex.
Admittedly I also enjoy the action :) . Chakra-wielding ninja soldiers (and I almost hesitate to call them ninja as the word is used in the real world, since we much more commonly see them as special-forces type soldiers) have such enormous possibilities, and as much as I might gnash my teeth at Kishimoto sometimes, I think he does a good job exploring them.
I like how Kishimoto makes even the over-the-top villains understandable, in some way. Orochimaru, for example: he didn't seem so bad until his parents died, at least from what we've seen in flashbacks and such. Sure, he grew into a horribly wicked, murderous, lying scumbag, but he had a motivation, and it's even one I can empathize with: reconnecting with his dead parents. In a shinobi world, it's not likely that children will choose conventional, traditional routes to dealing with big emotional problems. We don't really know what's up yet with Kabuto (before his merging with some of Orochimaru, and after), Uchiha Madara and Itachi, Pein, or Kyuubi, but there have been broad hintings that things are not what they seem with any of them, either.
I like all of Team 7. That's right, all. Hatake Kakashi, Uchiha Sasuke, Haruno Sakura, and my favorite Uzumaki Naruto. I dig em all, even when I think their choices are awful, and their actions wicked. All of them have real, human reasons for being the way they are. Not one of them is cut and dried, and to readers and viewers who pay attention, this is illustrated early in the very first story arc.
Hatake Kakashi is not a conventional teacher. He has a very 'hands-off' approach, and it's clear that his technique is to instruct his students in the basics, and then let them learn things on their own with minimal or sometimes even NO further help from him. This does not mesh well with our contemporary Western view of education, wherein every teacher is supposed to view every single child as uniquely precious and worthy, and teachers which fail to live up to the Coach Carter or Stand and Deliver example are failures. Here's the thing, though: Kakashi is not teaching high school. He's not teaching softball. He's a trainer of young soldiers and assassins. Truthfully if he is nice I almost wonder whether or not he's failing! Despite his many foibles and apparent disinterest, his revealed thoughts and actions clearly portray a man who cares deeply about the welfare of his students and comrades and works hard to protect them, yet makes mistakes and bitterly regrets them.
Truly, a horrible, irredeemable figure!
Uchiha Sasuke is in many ways a monster, and he was from a very young age. He has strong sociopathic tendancies, which are always monstrous. There is very little he is unwilling to do to achieve his goals, and as time passes he is shown to regret the humane choices he made instead of the colder, more ruthlessly expedient options. He is satisfied with inflicting great pain and suffering on his closest friends in furtherance of his goals. Despite receiving earnest warnings and numerous positive examples, he still fails to make the right choices. But you know what? He was made that way. Every one of you, most especially the Team 7 Bashers, ask yourselves: if your dearest relative had murdered your entire family and then used a bizarre mind-raping technique to draw you into a psychic realm to be tortured continuously for days on end...just how nice of a child would you be? If your dearest family member had taken special efforts to mold you into a murderous, wicked avenger at a very young age in the midst of horrifying trauma, just how sunny would you be years later when you met your team? And then, when you were deeply conflicted about where your life was going, this same person came back and with the power of his overwhelming fighting superiority illustrated just how inferior you were and how far you had strayed from previous torture/brainwashing...well, I'm sure you'd be able to bounce right back, right?
Please. While I firmly believe every person has a responsibility to do their best to overcome past trauma, even childhood trauma, I do not damn them when they fail to do so. I don't despise a dog that grew up as a fighting dog in a pit for being vicious to humans when rescued. If a woman is violently raped by a close male friend, I don't despise her for mistrusting and even mistreating men for months or even years afterward. The truth is, shortly after the Chuunin exams, Sasuke was on the right track. He had risked his life not once but twice in an effort to save his teammates-each time he had at best little hope of survival. He had expressed grudging comradeship with his team. But what comes along at this point in his life?
Uchiha Itachi, his nemesis, who even if he hadn't sucked him into Mangekyo torture after brutally and easily defeating him, would have disarrayed his life to some extent. How is Sasuke after this? Ignore the Tea Country filler arc. The switch has been flipped. Sasuke was straying from the childhood command Itachi had imprinted, through blood and torture and horror, and Itachi brought him back to the path. From there until the end of his fight with Naruto, and then shortly after that, his committment is obvious.
Shocking! To think that torturous brainwashing by a loved one might turn someone into a schmuck!
Haruno Sakura. Yeah, she was a heinous bitch to Naruto in their childhood together. This is surprising and hate-worthy why, exactly? Damn near everyone, most of her friends, most adults, even teachers, expressed contempt and disdain for him. Surely it is a horrible character flaw that Sakura adopted some of the normal behavior of her community. You'll note that, right away, within the first two or three episodes, she recognized her flaw and began to take steps--small ones, it's true--to change herself. In the chuunin exams, she was willing to kill their team's chances that year, almost certainly infuriating Sasuke, just to prevent Naruto's dream from being destroyed. Even though she didn't really think he had much of a shot at it anyway. Despite her general field incompetence as a shinobi, she is willing to risk her life in hopeless battles to save her loved one, and she worked very hard and endured a lot of pain to protect both of them in the Forest of Death. By Part 2, she has 'turned the corner', so to speak, fully recognizing all of Team 7 as people worthy of affection and protection, and to me it seems clear she regrets the promise Naruto made to her, and wishes he would not risk so much in its pursuit.
Terrible! Sakura was a mean child, who has since gotten better! Make the sign of the cross, quick, someone get the holy water!
Uzumaki Naruto. My favorite character. The underdog for much of the series, although as time passes he becomes less of an underdog, at least in fights. He is in many ways the ideal friend to have watching your back-at least as long as you're afraid of a direct attack. If you're worried someone's going to be sneaky and trick you or something, Naruto might not be your best guard. Willing and able to risk his life, take huge risks, and suffer great pain in service to his home, Naruto is a pretty unique fellow. To me, him being stuffed full of demon is one of the least interesting things about him. He's just fun. He loves people enough that he not only wants what will make them the most happy (retrieving Sasuke for Sakura), he actually works really hard at it, even though he recognizes what he's doing, and it hurts. He's got a sense of humor, and he recognizes from an early age that the most important things in life are people, friends, not wealth or power or prestige. He is not fearless, but resolved to do what he feels is right in spite of fear.
But he's also an annoying little shit sometimes. I mean, Sakura. Everyone, it's usually considered very rude bordering on creepy to keep throwing yourself on a woman when your attention is completely unwanted. His pranking--funny to us, the readers, but probably quite annoying to the victims, however much they might earn it. His obliviousness, at least in Part 1. Seriously, how smart do you have to be to glance at the expiration date on some milk? Or decide, eventually, "Hey, maybe I should go back and learn the academic stuff about being a ninja, since not knowing seems to bite me in the ass so much?" Naruto is not all endearing personality traits and heroic struggles. Beneath the shiny luster of being the main character, he's got feet of clay too.
But he's still my favorite character. None of the others even come close.
Reviews: I'm of course grateful for even short reviews, since they help to bring further attention to my story by upping the review count, and that means I'll be able to get more input on it. But they're not the ones I really, really crave. The ones I seriously jones for are the helpful ones, which are usually negative in some way. If you don't like an aspect of my story, lemme know! I can take it, honest! Lay into me on anything that's bothering you.
I recommend anyone bothering to read this bunch of ranting to check out my favorites, and my favorite authors. I'm not as diligent about adding favorite authors as I am stories, though. I try to make sure that every story that gets there is really good.