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Man, I've got to start writing again, whether it's original or fan.… - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
Man, I've got to start writing again, whether it's original or fan. I'm doing all sorts of restless brain things. I downloaded flashcards in Latin, Hindi, and Swahili, in addition to the Indonesian ones I already have from byki.com, and also put up daily words in several languages on iGoogle. (I should note that the likelihood of me being able to say anything not directly on the flashcards in any of these languages is nil, since they don't provide a grammar and you have to guess which word means which.) I planted a terrarium (and am thus likely to be responsible for the death of plants, as I have a serious brown thumb). I'm thinking of how to decorate a table for summer reading. I'm fretting over my hair. If I were doing anything particularly well, I'd be thinking, "Wow, this extra energy is great!" but it all seems to be just sort of mental screwing around while I wait for something to which I can apply myself for a good long while.

Sadly, I ordered two Harlequin Nocturnes to get a feel for them and see if I could write one, and am so deathly bored with them in the first two chapters of each that I think I'll need to re-think that idea. I guess I could always pretend to myself that I'm writing a Fifi LaFolle, but I think Fifi writes better than these. I think Ruthless's favorite, Zoltan Burr, writes better.
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summoner_lenne9 From: summoner_lenne9 Date: March 10th, 2009 05:57 am (UTC) (Link)
Wow. I thought after the Challenge Call Of Doom you would be sick of the Teddy-verse, in any form, for at least 3 months. Lol. :)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: March 10th, 2009 06:03 am (UTC) (Link)
I am. But I was sitting there in front of my flashcards, dutifully repeating, "This is a beautiful city" (Ini kota indah) and "This is a big neighborhood" (Ini kawasan besar) in Indonesian, and I just thought, "Dang. I'm never going to need to say, 'This is a big neighborhood' in Yogya. I need a project, dammit!"
chrischewscud From: chrischewscud Date: March 10th, 2009 06:27 am (UTC) (Link)

Finals are eating my brain

Sorry, I don't have a lot of project ideas right now, I'm trying to survive the end of term. Maybe you could knit hats or scarves? Even if you don't use them yourself, you can always donate them.
From: severely_lupine Date: March 10th, 2009 07:22 am (UTC) (Link)
Well... you've got one very good story started already. Why not finish up "Stray"? Eh? Eh? I know I for one would love to see it. And maybe it would be easier to get going on, since it's already got a good start on it.
From: (Anonymous) Date: March 10th, 2009 11:56 am (UTC) (Link)
You could always resurrect Remus and Dora, with some unlikely but exceedingly desirable premis, as in After the Rain's "Sojourners"--never directly contradicting canon, which just says they "lay there", and doesn't mention them in the epilogue as dead or alive. Any premis would be a little thin, but I'm certain many readers like myself, who were hoping against hope that you'd just keep them alive anyway, would swallow just about anything. Apart from being simply fantastic in itself, it would also be interesting to see what about Teddy would change, if he grew up in a home with parents and siblings, instead of Andromeda and Harry--and what would change in their characters, as well.
I'm sure if anything could get you writing again, Remus and Tonks would.
From: (Anonymous) Date: March 10th, 2009 03:03 pm (UTC) (Link)

New After the Rain Fic?

Can you provide a link to what you referenced above? Or at least give directions on how to find it? "After the Rain" is the only other fic writer I've ever really enjoyed, coming in a decent second to Fern, but I just googled her and didn't find anything titled "Sojourners" -- just the stuff I remember from well over a year ago.

Sara Libby
From: (Anonymous) Date: March 10th, 2009 12:21 pm (UTC) (Link)
Putting my two cents in...

JKR didn't kill THEM off, specifically--well, she did, literally, but I get the impression her thought process was not so much "going to kill off Remus and Tonks today" as "need a couple more names to add to the realistic-looking casualty list, and hey! parents with a kid Harry can symbolically ease through orphan-hood! Am going to sacrifice Lupin and Tonks for the good of random and literarily unsatisfying symbolic functions."

I'm not trying to disparage everything you've accomplished in the last year and a half--far from it. It's poignant, funny, heart-breaking, beautifully crafted stuff. But...Remus...Dora...living...I'm all choked up now, just thinking about that.

I know that going against cannon just because you feel like it isn't normally what you do, and I respect you for that. But in my opinion it's poorly-thought-out, unsatisfying cannon on more than just the straight mourning-them level. That just isn't where their story was going, or supposed to go. They're about overcoming prejudice and other obstacles, not about "names we'd rather remember", as Joe describes meaningless deaths in Shifts.

Please, Fern??
nundu_art From: nundu_art Date: March 10th, 2009 01:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
'I guess I could always pretend to myself that I'm writing a Fifi LaFolle, but I think Fifi writes better than these. I think Ruthless's favorite, Zoltan Burr, writes better.' *snerk* That bad, eh? I haven't read a Harlequin of any variety in, oh, probably 40+ years, as I think I might have been in junior high!
marycontraria From: marycontraria Date: March 10th, 2009 01:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
I would say, pretend you're writing Fifi LaFolle. Of course what you write will be better than the ones you're reading, which I don't actually think is a problem. When you're finished writing, if Harlequin won't take what you've written, then find someone else who will.
vesta_aurelia From: vesta_aurelia Date: March 10th, 2009 01:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
Of course, you could go look at Smart B*tches, Trashy Novels (blog) and see what romance series *they* recommend...I'm sure there are other series types out there you could write.

Heck, why not try the ST:TNG universe? You're worlds better than some of the tripe *there*
From: severely_lupine Date: March 11th, 2009 12:32 am (UTC) (Link)
Hey, now, that'd be interesting! I'd certainly love to see it. (TNG is my favorite show of all time, yet I've read very little quality fanfic of it.)
kizmet_42 From: kizmet_42 Date: March 10th, 2009 03:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
Harlequin is not the only publisher looking for paranormal romance. Go read the agent blogs - it's a high-demand product right now.

Write write write!
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: March 11th, 2009 03:11 am (UTC) (Link)
I was mostly looking at them because they put out so much that the turnaround has to be relatively quick, but I'll just find a way to survive until I find something better.
From: (Anonymous) Date: March 10th, 2009 05:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hehehe... I was looking through the bargain bin in a bookshop last weekend, and came across some romance with a woman on a sailing ship, and my first reaction was, "Fifi LaFolle!!!" I couldn't bring myself to buy or even touch it, even though it would surely have been entertaining.

And I'm also (re-)learning Latin out of sheer boredom. It's fun.

~Hermione Stranger~
From: (Anonymous) Date: March 10th, 2009 06:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
I feel slightly guilty writing this since I'm not part of livejournal and I've never really left a comment before. I think your writing is beyond excellent and you are more than ready to attempt something original. Don't let the two boring novels put you off. Now you know how NOT to write a harlequin. Good luck with whatever you decide.
malinbe From: malinbe Date: March 10th, 2009 08:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
A part of me says: I'm sure you'll find something original to work on that satisfies you. I don't see why something better than the usual Harlequin stuff would be turned down by them. You are a great writer, much better than many published authors, you'll get lucky sooner or later.

Another part of me says: PLEASE, FINISH STRAY!! Is doesn't end with a main character death, and that's nice! Or what about doing Safe? You could always end it with Teddy's birth, since we all know what happens after that and there's no need to remind us.

Good luck, and I hope you get the spark to start you off, one way or the other.
From: (Anonymous) Date: March 10th, 2009 10:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hi Fern, huge fan and long time lurker here. I didn't realize I *could* post comments without being a live journal user myself. I love your work, and definitely think you can/will be published someday. Have you thought about writing about the Mexican werewolf village? I found that whole world to be fascinating in just the tiny bit you showed us. And it has universal themes in Alderman's spiritual journey and the idea of community identity. The fact that Alderman and Vivian were rescued by a kind teacher who died in battle against evil forces is not at all JKR's domain, which I think would normally be a huge concern in turning fic into original work.

Thanks for days of high quality reading material,
hermia7 From: hermia7 Date: March 10th, 2009 11:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
That is a great idea. When trying to figure out which bits you could go original with, I thought more about the third war and marauder's roost stuff, but this doesn't have any overlap with canon, really. And even the maze-as-cure is all you! I have a lot more to say on this but can't bear to type it on my blackberry...
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Expand
sannalim From: sannalim Date: March 10th, 2009 11:10 pm (UTC) (Link)
Write the Fifi LaFolle... or the Jim Wolfe... or the Zoltan Burr. Show it to us -- or not show it to us -- as you please. Not showing might be better if you eventually want to try to publish it.

And Ooh, I like Karen's suggestion of expanding on the Mexican werewolf village, and agree with her comments regarding the ease of "filing off the serial numbers" to separate Alderman and Vivian from JKR's world -- as they're your own OCs anyway, creating characters who are very much like them, but are pulled out another step from A & V's HP roots might not be too difficult.
From: (Anonymous) Date: March 10th, 2009 11:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
You have such a great talent - as much as I'd love to see some more Teddy-verse or Safe or Stray (or all of them!!) - I think you should try to work on something original. Let the broader world enjoy your work as well!!
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