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Author has written 8 stories for Sonic the Hedgehog.
OMFG WHERE THE HELL HAVE YOU BEEN WHY HAVEN'T YOU BEEN REPLYING TO ME RAWR?!
FORGIVE ME! I am currently busy having no life (exams, end-of-year summatives... both in and out of school). I just spent an hour blowing my brains out on a flute practicing for my music solo tomorrow, so I'm kinda dizzy from the oxygen loss. I'm not as bad off as some of my other friends... I'm like, at the bottom of the top ten people having hard exams. Plus I need to find summer volunteer jobs so that I can actually GRADUATE when the time comes.
"Well, have you at least written anything?!"
...And in other news, I know that there's still a lot of stuff that I didn't reply to from a LONG time back, but I'll get... to them... soon...
So yeah... Uhh... please don't hurt me...
THE SELF-PROCLAIMED ULTIMATE SONIC THE HEDGEHOG COLLAB HAS ARRIVED!
Yes, that's right, UNASHAMED SELF-PROMOTION! TAKE THAT, HUMBLENESS!
But anyway, Ciel the Hedgehog, Blue Mage Quartet, and I have been working on a secret-ish collab together. It's finally been posted on Ciel's account, and can be viewed here. Also, thanks to playstation14, since this was his idea in the first place, and to skitzoism, SexyShadowGirl, and Maverick87 for their love, support, and "HURRY UP AND WRITE THE DAMN THING!"-ness.
So drop by, give it a read, leave a review, and make our day!
Hello to all fellow readers, writers… and assorted other things. Welcome to my profile!
After five years (or maybe more… I can’t remember) of reading and writing fanfiction, I have decided to finally put this profile to good use. If you’re really here to know more about me, all that stuff’s on the bottom. However, I guess that most of you don’t really care about my age… and my gender and nationality are rather obvious… and really, who cares what my hobbies, loves, hates, and favourite movies are?
After much thought, blood, sweat, and tears, I have decided to pass along some advice to writing fanfiction. Now I know I’m going to get as many pats on the back as I’m going to get bricks to the head for saying this… but these days, the Sonic the Hedgehog section is spewing out some… err… vomit-inducing stories (dodges bricks). Obviously, there are many, many exceptions to this, but not as much as the general population of readers would like.
So, without further ado…
Writing Fanfiction: A Guide to Getting a lot of Reviews
(Before we start, please note that this guide is mostly directed towards Sonic the Hedgehog fanfiction. You are fine if you want to read this for general advice, but if you know nothing about Sonic the Hedgehog, you might find yourself confused when references are made about Sonic and crew.)
This guide is rated E10+ for instances of frustration and semi-coarse language. And examples of horrible writing.
Table of Contents (Use Ctrl + f to jump to different sections)
2. The Plot
5. Title and Summary
6. Grammar, Spelling, and Formatting
7. Other Tips?
8. Helpful Sites
9. Random Rants
‘It was a bright, sunny day in the Mystic Ruins, until…
“SONIC!” yelled Amy. “GO AWAY AMY!” Sonic yelled back. “NOT UNTIL YOU MARRY ME!” Amy yelled back, swinging her hammers around. “NO I HATE YOU! I NEVER WANT TO SEE YOU AGAIN!” Amy stopped, and Sonic was so surprised that he stopped too. “You hate me?” She started to cry.
“Yes I do. I never want to see you again.” Sonic ran away to Tails and told him what happened. Then Fay appeared (Fay is a blue bird who used to work with the Babylon Rogues. He has big blue eyes and has the power to control the wind. He is almost as fast as Sonic and uses the Choas Emerlads to turn into super Fay). “That was mean, Sonic. You should apologize.”
Oh yeah. Someone needs to apologize, but it’s not Sonic.
Does the story sound familiar? Does it make you think, “Hmm… it feels like I’ve read it before?” Maybe… on fanfiction dot net? On someone else’s account? Or even worse… your own?
I sincerely hope you said, “No” to all those questions. This is an example of one of those vomit-inducing stories that make a lot people want to tear out their eyeballs, boil them under hot water, and shake them in a tin can full of needles until they’ve forgotten that they’ve ever read it. Why? Because the plot is generic, the characters out of character, the original character comes out of nowhere, the grammar is horrible, and the person has obviously never heard of a little thing we all call, “SPELL CHECK!”
Have no fear though! This is why this guide was made – to help you avoid all those mistakes, and probably save you a lot of hard work over nothing. Oh, and get you reviews. Lots of reviews.
I don’t know about you, but most people start out with a plot, and idea of what’s going to happen in the story and what the characters are going to do. Sounds simple, right? Sit around and wait for an idea to pop into your head in the next ten minutes, and, poof, plot! Have an idea already? Wow, you’re quick! I’m impressed!
Now come over here so I can hit you over the head with this extremely heavy dictionary.
I’m sorry, but that’s not how it works. An idea doesn’t pop into your head that easily. Of course, there are exceptions, but before you go thinking that you are one of those exceptions, think through the following:
1) Have I heard of this idea before somewhere?
2) Have I read of this idea before somewhere?
3) Is it something I would want to read?
4) Is it something others would want to read?
5) Am I only using this idea because another author did, and he/she got a lot of reviews?
Your answers should be: No, No, Yes, Yes, and No.
Of course, don’t go thinking that you can’t be inspired by other people’s ideas. That’s perfectly fine. Just remember being inspired is different from copying. And be completely honest with yourself when you look at your idea: Are you copying someone else? “Not really” is not a good enough answer. It’s either yes, or no.
Thinking up of ideas is hard, we all know that. Sometimes an idea might suddenly bowl you over, and if one has, then you’re lucky, not talented. J.K Rowling wasn’t thinking of Hogwarts and Harry when she was on the train – Harry just happened to walk into her head, she even admits it herself. So if you haven’t gotten an idea yet, just wait – don’t rip off of another author’s writing, because nobody’s going to want to read it. Being an author is about having fun, being original, and yes, hard work is included. That’s the reality of it, and if you’re not lucky, then some hard thinking is required.
Of course, this leads to the question: What’s considered “not original?”
The easiest, most fun and sometimes painful way to figure this out is by reading fanfiction. You’re never going to figure out what a lot of people write about that are almost the same if you never go and read some fanfiction, then make your judgment. Also, this gets you connected to a lot of other people, and they are more likely to read your fics if they stumble across one of yours one day, see your name, and think, “Oh, isn’t that the dude who’s reviewing my story?”
Then again, if you’re too lazy, you could also use the list below. I highly, HIGHLY recommend using the first option though, because not only is this list only going to contain the top ten, but also because this list is mostly from what I see around the Sonic the Hedgehog section, meaning it’s my judgment, which can be wrong at times. Oh, how surprising XD
And the top ten are (in no particular order):
1) SonAmyShad triangles, where Sonic yells at Amy, Amy cries and runs away, and Shadow comforts her. Now Sonic wants Amy back after somehow seeing the light. Hilarity, vengeance, and/or angsting ensue. Now includes Silver.
2) Tailsmo romance, where Tails is mourning for Cosmo, when he suddenly thinks of a brilliant plan to bring her back to life, or the flower suddenly blooms and, zomg, ‘tis Cosmo! After that, either Tails is bawling his eyes out, screaming, "WHY COSMO? WHY DID YOU MAKE ME KILL YOU! DON'T YOU SEE THAT I LOVE YOU?" (cue dramatic music!) Or worse, they just live happily ever after as they finally share their first kiss, because for some reason, they decide to happily forgive each other...?
3) Sonic and crew finding out that they have random siblings (including twins!) that they never knew about. Projects that were created to control Shadow in case he ever went out of control and/or betray Doom/ARK also count.
4) OC’s falling in love with Shadow. Other characters too, but mostly Shadow, because your OC is really just an incarnation of yourself, and since you have a fetish for Shadow's chest fur, you'll release it through the power of your Mary-Sue OC out of your fourteen-year-old mind.
5) Fics where the Sonic crew are thrown into high school and have to deal with teenage angst and drama. Yes, college counts. So does boarding school. And don't get me started on private schools...
6) Stories containing OC’s, where the OC’s parents, mentor, and/or guardians die. He/she loses everything he/she has ever known, goes evil/emo, then after meeting the Sonic crew, learns how to open up through "THE POWER OF FRIENDSHIP!"
7) A random character has amnesia, forgets all about the feelings they’ve had for a certain character, and falls in love with another one. The certain character feels all sad because he/she realizes how much he/she really loves the character with amnesia. Then, of course, Miss/Mr. Amnesia suddenly remembers his/her past memories by conveniently getting knocked on the noggin by (oh, get ready for the irony!) getting hit the EXACT SAME WAY they lost their memory in the first place. OH NOES! Now what is the character going to do! DUN DUN DUN!11!
8) The Sonic crew lands in the real world and lives in your house. Or just Sonic landing in the real world in general. Taking out Chris is not going to help you, and thinking that your fic is funny just because Sonic strangles Chris is a lie. Because after reading fifty "Sonic-looked-at-Chris-screamed-and-strangled-him-because-he-throught-he-was-a-monster" fics, it gets old real quick.
9) YOU and/or an OC landing in the Sonic world. It's even worse if you land in his world and get turned into a hedgehog that can run faster than Sonic and have the ability to use elemental powers and help them to completely pwn Eggman.
10) Sonic and crew go on vacation because a random character conveniently wins free tickets to an isolated island in the middle of nowhere. Then suddenly... here's the kick!... THE PLANE THEY'RE RIDING ON CRASHES ON THE ISOLATED ISLAND! KABLOOIE! Now they have to form alliances and participate in a complete rip-off of "Survivor." Soon, some of them fall in love, and form new friendships. Asides from the reader, who is by now, writhing on the ground in pain, everyone is completely happy and serene, thinking, "At least this disaster brought us all closer together."
… And the list goes on.
Again, please remember that there ARE exceptions. A good writer can take any old generic plot and twist it into something fantastic and read-worthy. But again, don’t assume that you are one of those few exceptions!
There isn’t any real way to think of plots. It’s not like a strict rule, or a formula that you can write down and use or anything like that. No, much of it counts on luck, your own judgment, and general thinking skills all around.
“Ha!” You think to yourself. “azngirlchibi is already losing it. Characters? Why would you need a section on that?”
Ugh, because, dummy, characters are an important part of the story, obviously. No, not just who appears, but their personality.
Now, with writing fanfiction, it’s hard to definitely say who’s got the characters in character, and who doesn’t. Unless you officially work in SEGA, there’s no way you can tell how Sonic and the gang would truly react in a specific situation. There ARE things most of us can agree on, like how Sonic would never voluntarily jump into water unless someone’s life was at stake, or how Knuckles would never turn his back to the Master Emerald unless, again, he was forced to.
It’s when people start going overboard, start making the characters really OOC (out of character) that bug the readers. Most of us put up with it, knowing that everyone’s interpretation of them is different, but really put yourself into a character’s body and think about how the characters would react, not how you would react. That’s the main cause of OOCness – the author doesn’t think about how the character would react, but how the author themselves would react. Remember, we want to read about the characters, not about you.
“Okay,” you say, “but my character goes through many life-changing experiences, and they’re bound to change their personalities, right?”
Right, that’s very true. But the change has to be gradual and believable, and you’d better have a very, very good reason. Also, if it’s something shocking or sudden – the death of a close friend, for example – we’d more than likely wouldn’t mind a sudden change in the character’s behaviour. Use your own judgment and think it through – would it really affect them that strongly? Would Shadow really go on a killing rampage if Tails died? Would Cream give up Cheese to save Rouge? Think like the characters, not like yourself, because remember, even if you are in charge of the story, the characters were pre-made by someone else, and you don’t really have the free reign to do with them as you please.
Ugh… and as for OC’s, I recommend this site:
People who have received reviews from me know that I rant about this… a lot. Descriptions add depth and soul into your story, and, as a friend of mine calls it, “puts meat on the bones of the story.”
Here’s an example:
‘As he walked through the rain, Shadow thought sadly about how his life had crumbled to pieces. He sighed.’
Hmm… it’s okay, but it doesn’t really suck you in. It sorta set the mood, but not in the vivid, “Holy sh!t!” way. It’s average. It doesn’t suck, but it’s not good either.
First, we’ll dissect this sentence.
“As he walked through the rain…”
If you’ve read through the rest of it, you kinda get the feeling that Shadow is sad, right? Well, just using “walked” doesn’t make it sound like he’s sad. It just makes him sound neutral, because “walking” is just something we all do, in any mood we’re in. Also, he walked “through the rain…” What sort of rain? A light drizzle? A downpour? Rain is usually associated to sadness/tears, so why not make it sound more dramatic?
“As he dragged his feet forlornly through the piercing sheets of rain…”
See? You haven’t even finished the sentence yet, and you already get the feeling that Shadow, is in fact, sad. Whenever you can, don’t just use one word to describe actions. Drag it out, but within reason. Too much description can sometimes cause your readers to get lost. Also, don’t use descriptions that are generic and that everyone uses, such as “emerald-green eyes” or “cobalt-blue fur.” I mean, they’re great descriptions, but after seeing them over and over again, we just get extremely tired of it.
“…Shadow thought sadly…”
Shadow “thought sadly?” No, that’s not good enough. “Sadly” is so generalized. I mean, what sort of sad? Is he sad because he’s angry? Is he sad because he’d just been betrayed? Is he sad because there’s a problem he can’t solve? “Sadly” sounds so childish, it makes it seem like he’d just dropped an ice cream cone. “Thought” is rather generic as well, but it isn’t as bad as “sadly.”
“… Shadow mourned hopelessly…”
Now the readers know that’s he’s not just sad, he’s “hopeless.” This gives a sense that it’s a situation he can’t back out of and isn’t going to be solved easily. It’s much better than “sadly” in any case. And “mourned” also gives you a sense that he’s mulling over something in his mind, but in a sad way.
“…about how his life had crumbled to pieces…”
How many times have you heard the line, “his life had crumbled to pieces?” How many songs have that line? How many stories, fanfiction, literature in general have you heard that phrase? Too many, that’s how many. Try your best to avoid lines that you’ve heard over and over again. Even ones that you’ve heard once are probably bad enough, but understandably, you have to use the more generic lines everyone once in a while. Usually, though, you don’t have to, and when you don’t have to, don’t!
“… about how his life had slipped away and melted into blackness…”
As you can see, life doesn’t have to crumble. It can melt too. It can wilt if you want, but the flower analogy is rather tiresome as well. All in all, try to avoid metaphors or similes you hear often.
Same as “he walked.” – too generic and too bland.
“A sigh escaped him and was washed away in the rain.”
‘As he walked through the rain, Shadow thought sadly about how his life had crumbled to pieces. He sighed.’
“As he dragged his feet forlornly through the piercing sheets of rain, Shadow mourned hopelessly about how his life had slipped away and melted into blackness. A sigh escaped him and washed away in the rain.”
What was once nineteen words turned into thirty-six. Two different sentences that essentially describe the same thing, but one with much more detail then the other, and sometimes, one tiny detail can make all the difference.
Though it’s usually emotional descriptions that I complain about, there are also physical descriptions to consider. First off, no one wants to read a paragraph about what so-and-so’s wearing. No one wants to read about her uber low neckline, or his uncomfortable but form-fitting tux. I mean, sure, description is important, but when it’s ONE FREAKING PARAGRAPH about Sonic’s new outfit, it’s enough to make me fall asleep and drown in my tub of ice cream.
Keeping that in mind, we’ll start with a few examples.
“Rouge’s hat was white.”
“Rouge’s sunhat was white.”
“Rouge’s sunhat was a creamy, vanilla white.”
“Rouge’s handmade sunhat was a creamy, vanilla white and worn at a jaunty angle on her head.”
There! That’s what you want!
Another thing to keep in mind when you’re describing your surroundings is to use all your senses. Too often, writers only use their sense of sight, which though good, doesn’t make your description as vivid.
“The banister was made of wood.”
“The banister was made of a rough wood.”
Sight and touch.
“The banister was made of a rough wood that smelled of oak.”
Sight, touch, and smell.
“The banister was made of a smooth wood that smelled of oak, and it scraped loudly when he ran his hand across it.”
Sight, touch, smell, and sound.
“The banister was made of a smooth wood that smelled of oak, and it scraped loudly when he ran his hand across it. The air tasted of the forest.”
Sight, touch, smell, sound, and taste.
There are almost no instances when you can’t use all the senses that we have. It makes the story much move vivid, as if the reader was actually there. Don’t just paint us a pretty picture – like travelers would agree, seeing a place in pictures is different from actually being there.
Title and Summary
This is most, if not, then almost the most, important part of your story. Think about it – it’s the first thing people see, the first impression we get of your story, whether it’d be worth their time or just another story that wasn’t worth it at all. There’s pages and pages of Sonic stories to go through – give us a reason to stop at yours.
Thinking of a title can be hard, but nothing turns readers away faster than, “Untitled – Will Think of a Title Soon!” It gives us the impression that you don’t really care about the story anyway, which means you’ll write something crappy. Just stick any title in there – anything is better than “Untitled.”
For the more serious writer, really take your time to think of a title. Something that’s uncommon – use the story search function on fanfiction to check how many other stories share the title of yours. You should also the thesaurus to think of different ways to say your title, or trying playing with the words, or use a theme in the story. For example, instead of, “My Only Love,” which is kinda cheesy, try “Aphrodisia,” which basically means lust or love.
As for the summary, please, please, please for the love of God, don’t say, “too lazy to write a summary, R&R!” or, “I’m not going to say anything. Just read. R&R!”
“Too lazy to write a summary!” What’s wrong with you people? It’s only like, around 200 characters! You don’t sound cool, you really do sound lazy. So lazy in fact, your story was probably something you pulled out of your arse because you were bored one day. And, “I’m not going to say anything,” is probably just as bad. You don’t sound mysterious. You sound like you’re covering up for your laziness. If you look around, most stories with some reviews do have some sort of summary, at least most then the ones that don’t.
So, please, please put something in there.
Writing a good summary… now that’s a little harder.
Ones that you should never, ever, ever write include these:
“Summary sucks, but story is better than it sounds!”
“Shadow falls for Mary, the new girl in town. But is Mary really all that she seems?”
“Knuckles is hiding a dark secret. What is it?”
The first two are just… well… dumb. As I’ve said, the title and the summary are the first impressions we get of your story, and if you write, “Summary sucks,” we think that your story does too. And flames… you sound like a baby. You’re going to get flamed everyone once in a while – stand up and take it! Who knows, it might even have a hidden kernel of wisdom amid all those insults.
The one with Mary in it… well, replace Mary with any OC. Now tell me – WHY should I CARE about your OC? I don’t know her, first off, and I have absolutely zero interest in her. All I know is, for some inexplicable reason, Shadow falls for her. And the last part doesn’t make her sound mysterious, just vague and mary-sue.
The one with Knuckles is also too vague. It doesn’t capture my attention at all, because really, why would I care about his supposedly “dark secret?” Is it going to destroy the world? It needs to be more specific, without giving the story away. Put the juiciest part of the story right in the summary. Tell me what Knuckles’s secret it.
“The Master Emerald is going to kill him. Knuckles knew this, but somehow, he couldn’t bring himself to care.”
See, telling us what his dark secret is actually is more of an attention-grabber then something kinda vague. The problem is, people are so afraid of giving the story away, when really, they need to chill out. Give us what the most important part of the story is – just don’t tell us why.
Just please, never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, EVER be too lazy to write a summary. Ever.
Grammar, Spelling, and Formatting
Most people think spelling and grammar is so overrated. Tell me, why? How? If you were reading a book with horrible spelling, you whine and complain about how sucky the author is, yet you won’t fix your own? And you expect us to read it?
Okay, a spelling mistake here and there, most people wouldn’t mind. Even Microsoft Word misses some now and then, especially words like, “they’re,” “there.” and “their.” That doesn’t give you an excuse to not use spell-check at all. If you don’t have a program, then download one off the net – there’s tons out there! Or read through the story yourself, and if your spelling sucks, get someone else to do it! There’s no point in being shy about it. You’ll be thankful if you check your spelling and grammar.
A common grammar mistake people make is when writing conversations. You must write a new paragraph every time someone speaks. It’s not something I made up, or that everyone does because they feel like it… it’s part of the English language.
‘”Hi!” said Sonic. “Oh, hey, Sonic!” said Tails. “Knuckles is on the phone, he wants to talk to you.” Tails went back to tinkering with the plane. “He knew I’d be here?” Sonic asked, confused. “Yeah, said something about the Master Emerald.”
“Hi!” said Sonic.
“Oh, hey, Sonic!” said Tails. “Knuckles is on the phone, he wants to talk to you.” Tails went back to tinkering with the plane.
“He knew I’d be here?” Sonic asked, confused.
“Yeah, said something about the Master Emerald.”
That’s proper grammar, and it keeps your conversation from becoming a thick, eye-numbing paragraph.
Speaking of eye-numbing paragraphs, what is the first thing you do when you see a huge, thick paragraph when you click on a story? Press the back button, most likely. So what makes you think that other people want to read your stories if the first thing they’re greeted with is a thick, long paragraph? Try to break up your paragraphs when you can. Generally four lines (not sentences, lines) per paragraph are more then enough to get your point across. Don’t make it any longer.
PLAY THE GAMES! WATCH THE SHOW! READ THE COMICS! Researching will only ever get you so far - if you're not a true fan of the Sonic fandom, then what the heck are you doing writing Sonic stories?
Would you hand that story in if it was a school thing? Okay, so your teacher's probably not going to be completely happy if you hand in a story about a blue hedgehog who can run really fast and has hands big enough to pop Elise's head, but forget about it being about Sonic for a moment. Would you hand in something that says, "2," "u," or "y?" Probably not. So what makes you think we would want to read something like that? That's "to," "you," and "why," thanks. Engrish we can handle, but MSNglish? No.
Don't delete a story you hated. It might come in handy some day, and not just handy for searing your eyeballs with your failure. No, looking back at these stories gives you something to compare the stories you like to. What did I do wrong? Did I improve since then? Can I make this idea work again? So don't be so eager to trash things you don't like. Knowing that you can improve gives you something to shoot for.
Don't feel pressured to write when you have writer's block. It's not like they're going to come to your door with a body bag and a knife if you don't update. Writing something you're unhappy about will only make that writer's block a whole lot harder to knock down. Take a break from writing, walk around, breathe in some fresh air, then come back and start writing again. There's many, many ways that people handle writer's block, but the important thing is to not try to force yourself to write when writer's block is rearing it's ugly head.
Find out for yourself what works when you write. Don't expect someone to direct you. Sure, they can guide you, give you advice, etc, but they can't magic you into a great author. Don't be afraid to try something new. The point of fanfiction dot net is not to boost your ego with lots of reviews (though reviews are nice XD) - it's so that a community of writers can get together to give advice. No one can ever tell you what will work exactly, because in the end, you are the one who gives life to your story, and no one else.
Phew… done. And that’s all I have to say. Please remember, as I’d said before, that there are exceptions to some of these rules. Also, you could follow all these rules perfectly, but everyone’s writing style is different. One person might lean more heavily towards writing descriptions but make the character extremely OOC, and vice-versa. Writing isn’t definite, and it changes with everyone. Some are just naturally good, some just need to work on it, and the unfortunate ones… well, they just suck.
XD I don't really mean the last part. But honestly, everyone's writing style is different, and this is only a guide, not hard-core rules or anything. I haven't even covered everything, just the basics. The important thing is to try your best, m'kay? As cheesy as that sounds, people can tell if you put your all into a story. Though effort alone can't do much, it can make a difference between an average story to an amazing one. The human mind and the human heart is amazing in the way that it can tell when someone has put their heart into their writing - or in anything, really. If you want to look at it in a more practical sense, think of it this way - Do you want to read something someone wrote because they were bored, or something someone wrote because they love writing?
This is a list of random sites that I find are helpful when you're writing.
- Online thesaurus. Useful for thinking up of title names, when you don't want to a common title (for example, I used this to look for the now-titled, "Deadfall," when I originally was planning to use, "Trapped.")
- A site to anything - really, anything Sonic. It tends to lean more towards the SEGA Sonic fandom, but has useful info on each of the characters, gets into some of the more technical aspects and anatomy of the characters, talks about the Sonic fandom (all of them), and even has a section on creating fancharacters. Be warned that this is NOT an official site, and is made by fans.
http://www.fanfiction.net/u/797581/ - ... Just click on this site XD
http://www.fanfiction.net/forum/The_Sonic_writers_guild/2624/ - A little hidden gem I'd stumbled across while scanning our forums. This friendly forum will let you share your ideas, concerns, and advice on writing Sonic the Hedgehog fanfiction. Lots of good advice on this forum! Don't miss out!
- For those who have never heard of Wikpedia, it's basically an online encyclopedia where ANYONE can edit ANYTHING. Because of that, be careful when you're going through the information on this site, since it's reliability is rather debateable. However, they have lots of useful sites at the bottom (the bibliography), and I recommend that you go through THOSE, not the actual article itself.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ldDpr02g-TM&NR=1 - How NOT to make your OC's. PLZZZ.
More to come...
So the next time you put up your fic, look at it really, really hard. Make sure it can do the little blue dude proud!
Just my opinion on random things relating to literacy and fanfiction writing in general. This is just my opinion, though, so please don't hurt me XD And I'll update this... whenever the mood strikes me.
Rant 1 - Pairings in the Summary:
A while back, I was in a forum where they had the question: "In your summary, should you add what your pairings are?"
As most of you already know, I always give a pairing warning. Why? Now that I think about it, I don't know. Is there really a reason to do it? Does it get you more reviews? Less reviews?
To me, I think it's a good way to get the type of readers you want. I've only written SonAmy stories - you won't see a ShadAmy out of me, or a SonSal. I know plenty of SonAmy fans who will ONLY read fics when there's a SonAmy warning in the summary. Even I do that. It's probably because there's just so many stories to go through, that when I'm looking for a good romace, I'll only look for phrases that pop out at me. After all, no one can read 10 000 plus summaries without skimming at least a little bit.
I look at it this way: If you put a pairing warning down, you'll lose potential readers who might've thought that your story would've been okay if they hadn't been turned away from the warning. If you don't put one down, you get the opposite - you'll lose readers that you're aiming for, but you might get a larger variety of readers.
So... to warn, or not to warn? That's really hard to say. With both, you're going to be taking a bit of a gamble, especially if your story is completely centered around a particular pairing. You should probably not put it down if it's going to be written in passing - very light romance that's implied just a tiny bit to give your story some extra flavour. If it's going to be a pure romance fic... well, I say it would depend on your story. If it's supposed to be a surprise, like the characters are supposed to slowly fall in love and there's going to be a huge love triangle/square/some other geometric shape, then don't put it down. You don't want to ruin the surprise, right? It's like having a love triangle between Sonic, Shadow, and Amy, and saying in the summary, "Shadow and Amy end up together." If the pairing is obvious from the start, say, they're already in love, then you should probably put down a warning. The readers are going to find out early anyway, so there's not much point in hiding it.
End of rant one - March 8, 2008
Rant 2 - Judging Your Writing Based on your Fanfiction Skills:
Did you know that a surprising number of fanfic authors leave fanfiction to go on and become professional writers? Now, I don't know if they actually made an impact in the writing world, or if they had writing classes outside of writing fanfiction, but let's pretend they didn't, for purposes of this rant. Is it safe to assume that you are a good writer just because you are good at writing fanfiction?
My answer would be no... but for a few exceptions.
See, if you're going to be a writer - as in, a fiction writer - for a living, it would definately not be safe to assume that you will be good at it just because you are a fanfiction writer. When you are writing fanfiction, you already have things to base your writing off of - you already have pre-made characters, a set world, possible themes already worked out for you, etc. etc. If you are going to be a fiction writer, you have to make up those sort of things on your own. You have to make up your own characters, your own worlds, and any tiny little details that enrich a story. OC's and AU's don't really count, since you still have to include pre-made characters for it to be an actual fanfiction, and if not pre-made characters, than OC's that have skills and/or physical appearances that are based off of the original characters in the fandom you are writing for. If you're going to be a fiction writer, you can't base your ideas off of anything. You have to make it up on your own, develope a likeable character, an interesting universe... things like that.
There might be a few scenarios where you can expect to make a living off writing based on your fanfiction skills, but they're very limited in the amount of creativity you can use. If, say, you write for an advertising agency, you already have the base laid out for you, so all you have to do is write something that sounds good and will get you some money.
Even I wouldn't judge my writing off of my fanfiction stories. I can totally write if you give me a few pre-set things, but if I have to just make something up, such as characters, whole worlds, etc., I would find it much too hard. There's so many things to keep in mind... just thinking of it makes my head spin.
... Ugh, I think I'll just stick to fanfiction, at least for now XD
End of rant two - April 9, 2008
Rant 3 - I AM GETTING SO SICK OF IT ALL!
Uhh... I'm not as mad as I sound in the title, honest. But what happened to the Sonic section?! How come so many stories these days have an OC falling in love with Sonic or Shadow? Has Sonic '06 rotted your brains? Maybe it's the whole Elise and Shahra thing. I dunno, but whatever it is, it has to stop.
Now, you're probably thinking, "What the heck are you picking on OC stories for?" ... I'm not. It's just that a majority of them are written with terrible grammar, horrid spelling, and a "slapped together at the last minute" storyline. Every time I see one of these, I want to bang my head on the keyboard and completely give up. What's even worse is that I, and a few other writers on the site, have been receiving backlash for kindly pointing out a grammar mistake or two, or saying that their OC could use some improvement. We didn't yell, we didn't insult, we didn't even write in all caps. We just kindly pointed out an error, and what do you get? "GET OFF UR HIGH HORSE! WAT DO U KNO NEWAY?" (Actually, it took me a while to work out that "neway" meant "anyway...")
Oh, there's good OC stories out there, I know that. I actually have one on my alert list that I'm keeping an eye on, and it's fantastic. BUT! Bad OC stories make other OC stories look bad, point blank. So many good writers are leaving this section because the fandom has just become a bunch of self-obsessed, "I will only take good comments" authors who can't handle criticism. Someone has actually told me that "criticism is bad." When I said that, "Actually, it's flames that are bad. Flames are just a bunch of insults strung together. Criticism is an important tool to help you improve writing, because it points out flaws that can be fixed with a little work," all I got in return was, "No, criticism and flames are the same thing. They make you feel bad."
Umm... duh. Criticism is going to sting at first. You have to take everything with a grain of salt, pardon the tiresome cliche. If you can't handle something like criticism, how are you ever going to improve? Some people are actually so stingy that pointing out a spelling mistake ("Oh, great story, but I noticed you used the wrong "there"), you still get freaking backlash for it! What the heck?!
(breathing hard) Okay... calm down... calm down...
I know, I know, I know that there are good authors out there. I know I should try to look at the glass half-full, and not half-empty. But it's hard to when the glass is more like, three-quarters empty and one-quarter full. I mean, I can handle a bad story, just not a bad author.
My point? Criticism is NOT bad. Instead of whining about it, improve yourself.
End of rant three - August 1, 2008
Special Thanks to:
Still Bullet - Thanks for the suggestions! I really appreciate it!
Also, thanks to the people who have sent me PM's in the past... I really appreciate it, even though I don't always get to you all XD
Oh, and people should know that I'm always accepting suggestions with the guide, and I'm pretty willing to read fics to critique them personally when I'm not busy. So give me a PM when you need me XD Ohh, and answer the poll question for me, too!
Name: Like you have to ask... Here's a hint - it's an English name. Like, it's not, "Ling Ling" or "Mayhyun."
Age: Well, people who have found out are always surprised by how young I actually am, so I'm probably younger than you think XD
Random Personality Quiz says:
"ENTJs are decisive. They see what needs to be done, and frequently assign roles to their fellows. Few other types can equal their ability to remain resolute in conflict, sending the valiant (and often leading the charge) into the mouth of hell. When challenged, the ENTJ may by reflex become argumentative. Alternatively (s)he may unleash an icy gaze that serves notice: the ENTJ is not one to be trifled with."
AMPM Personality Test says I am:
Extroversion, Score of 53:
"You scored somewhere in the middle between introversion and extroversion, which means that you draw characteristics from both ends of the spectrum. Sometimes, you need time to yourself, preferring to think things through on your own. Other times, you enjoy interacting with others. Overall, you are likely a fairly outgoing person who occasionally opts for solitude. You likely need a balance of alone time and time with others in your life because you can become a little overwhelmed if you ignore the introverted side of yourself."
Random Sonic Quiz says I am most like:
Shadow the Hedgehog!
"You're Shadow, and you're damn sexy! You're a dark, tormented soul whose best friend died on the ARK. However, you're loyal to those you love, and you've got swarms of fans around the world that are obsessed with you! Cheer up!"
... Umm... sure... whatever the quizzes say...
How azngirlchibi would describe herself:
Hmm... well, I can't really describe myself very well. Most people say that I'm just... confusing XD
Let's see... okay, I used to be the angsty kid at school. You know... hid in the corner writing stuff, felt lonely but thought that people were idiots, pretty cold, had a few friends... Heh, now that I look back, was I ever a huge hypocrite! XD I mean, honestly, pushing away people and wanting friends at the same time? God... I was such an idiot.
Now I'm like... the funny girl, bitingly sarcastic, sort of aloof, but loves her friends to pieces. I have friends who are goths, emos, jocks, geeks... you name it. Well, except druggies and smokers (I'm not THAT open...). Asking me for advice is asking for tough love (I'm... opinionated, to say the least XD), I still love writing with a passion, and my hobby other than writing is to confuse people. I like making people laugh, and apparantly, I'm witty XD. Oh, and I hate it when people try to stereotype me. Honestly, it's like, "Hey, you're smart. You're opinionated. So... that must mean you hate jocks, right?" Er... no, not right. Are you saying jocks are stupid? Silly people... But yeah, mostly, I hear people describing me as, "confusing." Dunno what that's supposed to mean XD Maybe it's because if someone said, "I HATE YOU!" to me, I'd be like, "YAY!" with a smile. Heh heh... throw them for a loop!
So how did I get from point A (angsty) to point B (not angsty)? Well... actually, I'm not sure. I guess I just woke up one day and thought to myself that I'm going to live. No matter how hard I try, I'm going to have to go through this big ball of sh!t we call "life," and well... I might as well smile and enjoy the ride. Might as well be happy, right? There's really no point in being... like how I was before. So slowly, I found tons of things in people that I never knew of before. I found that I still kept the parts of my "old self" that I liked, but I also found myself genuinely happy to be with people. Yes, they can hurt you and make you sad, but... how should I put this without making it sound horribly cliched? ... Actually, I can't. So I'll just make a cliche: They're only human. Stop whining and live with it.
I don't really know why I'm getting so sentimental today (playing the world's smallest violin here!), but this is the reason why I love writing, now that I think about it. I myself know what it's like to grow, and I want to see these characters grow, even if it's not official, and only through ficitional writing. I haven't written many stories that focus on characters very often (I get lost in the plot easily XD), but I'm planning a few where I will try to focus more on character growth.
In a nutshell: Find a way to make yourself happy. Don't worry, it doesn't hurt XD
Cold Compassion, collab with The Queen of Aces
2. Everyone's a Little Bit Racist to Canadians
4. No More Rings