I could only say, "Me, neither."
Anyway, talking to a_p_ this weekend, we got on the subject of Star Wars fanfic, as we are wont to do. And I realized the reason I don't write that much anymore is that I don't have that much new to say about Anakin's story. (And yes, I do read the whole saga as "Anakin's story.")
I think I must have written over a thousand pages of Anakin/Vader fic after Episode 1. The Penitent is roughly three hundred pages, and the two Lady Vader stories are about the same, which means I've written more than a thousand pages, since that doesn't even include Family Portrait or any number of short stories. The character fascinates me, and has since I saw Return of the Jedi. The fascination hasn't waned, and I'm very much looking forward to episode three...
And hoping I've made some wrong guesses.
I was in a rush between Episode 1 and 2 to get my stuff together and come up with a picture of Anakin that made sense to me. I was pleased and gratified with Attack of the Clones, because the things that needed fixing were all surface (which name Padmé/Amidala would choose to go by, for instance). The basic sweep of the character, I'd gotten, and didn't need to change. And now I find myself a bit trapped--Anakin's a complex character (a lot more complex than his critics and detractors like to allow), but a thousand odd pages have pretty much covered my observations, to wit:
- Anakin is ruled primarily, and often unwisely, by love. This is both a weakness and a strength.
- Anakin sees things up close and personal, and doesn't have a great grasp on the fabled Big Picture.
- By contrast, Obi-Wan is really great with the Big Picture, but can't comprehend the individual passions that so rule Anakin. This makes for a relationship where the two parties miscommunicate constantly, even when they think they understand one another.
- Anakin is naïve. He very honestly can't imagine why just putting someone nice like Padmé (or, as he tragically believes, Palpatine) in a position of absolute power wouldn't make for paradise in our time. He is perfectly sincere when he says that what he wants is to bring order to the galaxy, and that if the rebels would just stop fighting, everything would be hunky-dory.
- He thinks in terms of people, not systems. Had he lived after his redemption, he would have driven his more politically aware (but equally passionate) daughter mad with this, because he couldn't comprehend why she would put limits on her own power, since after all, she knows she means well and is not Palpatine.
That's it. A thousand pages. And probably counting, as in the end of things, I always come back to Star Wars no matter what I say, and SW, for me, is Anakin.
Oh, we got a negative review on Lady Vader because the reviewer didn't believe that Anakin would bend so easily to Amidala, or that Amidala would give in to dictatorship, and that's something that remains to be seen in Episode 3--how much would he allow her to be his "someone wise," and how tempted might she be to give in to his idealism and take on the role, especially if it's in the form of opposition to Palpatine? But I don't think there's been anything in the movies that would contradict our interpretation.
So now what do I say? The twins have been developed in the Anakin stories, as has Padmé to some extent. Han and Lando don't interest me much, and Chewie intersts me not at all. I was at the point where I was mostly playing with my original characters, three war orphans from different perspectives who grew up together. Every time I sit down to write on the themes and the character that still hold my allegiance and interest, I feel like I'm just repeating something I already said.
That's one of the reasons I dove so deep into Harry Potter--new people and new ideas to play with. Remus grabbed my mind, and later Tonks did. I wanted to know more and think about them a bit. What's the meaning of lycanthropy? What does it feel like? What about the Shapeshifter who has such a stable and indomitable personality? Heck, what about the Shapeshifters in general? You can't shake a stick at this universe without hitting someone with a few different forms. I imagine that sooner or later, I'll run out of things to say about Remus and Tonks, and people will heave a sigh of relief about it, but for now, they're bubbling away in my brain as much as Anakin, and I haven't managed to get all of it out yet.
Anyway, I think I'm re-pimping this fic of mine, but I'm in an Anakin-ish mood, so this is my favorite of my solo-written Anakin stories, because it's where I learned to love Obi-Wan, too.
ETA: I switched to Mozilla Firefox for my browser on the advice of the LJ techie people. I don't entirely like it.