Greetings, and welcome back to one of the blog posts designed to point out what common sense already should tell you, and what the rules definitely do.
I am Wanderer D, and like many other mods and admins, I have better things to do than this, but alas, it is not to be.
So, class, pay attention.
Can I go to the bathroom?
Is there a tl;dr version of this? I mean, I really don’t want to read too much.
You do realize this site consists, basically, of text... right?
Oh, hey! Yeah! It does!
Anyway, I’ll try and be brief since I have stuff to do. So, see the following text?
"Upon my word," said Fancy Pants, "I believe you are perfectly right. My father certainly could mean nothing more by his request to me than what you say. I clearly understand it now, and I will strictly fulfil my engagement by such acts of assistance and kindness to them as you have described. When my mother removes into another house my services shall be readily given to accommodate her as far as I can. Some little present of furniture too may be acceptable then."
"Certainly," returned Rarity. "But, however, one thing must be considered. When your father and mother moved to Ponyville, though the furniture of Canterlot was sold, all the china, plate, and linen was saved, and is now left to your mother. Her house will therefore be almost completely fitted up as soon as she takes it."
Wow that’s very impressive!
It’s also Jane Austen. The only difference is that the names are changed: Fancy Pants instead of Mr. Dashwood and Rarity instead of Mrs. John Dashwood.
But... that’s not FIM!
Of course not. The fact that even you can realize this is indeed why it boggles the mind as to why there can even be some confusion about it. Now, the key to knowing how to–
Hey guys! I have a new story!
Hey, it’s Obnoxious Writer! They say his cutie mark is a pencil stabbing an eye!
I can believe that. So, OW, what do you have for us?
I wrote a story about a human universe equestria! Everyone has always been human! No ponies at all!
You do realize that “FIM” actually is a “My Little Pony” series, don’t you? By definition, it is supposed to be about ponies.
No, no, you don’t get it. It’s the same, only with no ponies.
I sense that we are not going to agree on that, but, go on. There’s nothing in the rules (so far) against having a human pony.
Wanderer, your skin is visibly crawling.
I know. Anyway, OW, proceed.
So, yeah, I place Equestria in the middle of the Bible Belt where the Mane 6 hate each other and–
You what?! So... it’s actually on Earth!?
Yes, where else would it be?
It could be... you know, its own world? I mean... with its own rules about magic and–
Magic?! Ha! There is no magic in my fic! It’s not real!
So... Equestria is in the middle of the Bible Belt, there is no magic... but Celestia and Luna raise the sun and moon respectively, right?
Oh, Wanderer! You so funny! (secretly I think you’re stupid)
I can read that, you know?
Gah. Anyway, no, Celestia and Luna do not have any powers whatsoever.
Okay, so, you grabbed “My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic” and you turned into “My Little Human: No Friendship.”
What else did you do?
“No really, they bounce! They don’t feel pain like us!”
Fluttershy hefted the rabbit in her hands and threw it against the wall. It rebounded with a squeak and thumped onto the floor, thrashing it’s little paws about. With a kick of her heel, Fluttershy rolled the rabbit back into its hutch and slammed the door. “Far out,” Applejack mumbled, munching on an apple. “I’m going to make a tweet about that.” “Whatever Applejerk.” Fluttershy stumbled back into her kitchen, wiping her dirty hands over her dress and began to rummage amongst stacks of filthy Tupperware containers before pulling out a small blue plastic box. “Aha!” she cried. “Fun times are here again! “Fluttershy!” Applejack’s eyes went wide and she held onto her cowboy hat out of shock. “You can’t have that stuff here, drugs are illegal! What if someone finds it?” “Pff you worry too much!” Fluttershy hooked up her iPod to some speakers and began to play some thrash metal as she tipped the contents of the box onto the kitchen worktop. “Anyway, cocaine isn’t a drug, it’s a medicine!”
It’s my story! You don’t like it?
But... wait, you not only took away the magic, the pegasi, the unicorns, the goddesses/uber-powerful alicorns... but you also changed their personalities?
Hey, they are completely in character! Applejack has her hat and Fluttershy has her bunnies! Besides, they are humans, they wouldn’t act like ponies!
But how does a crack-head, violent teen qualify as Fluttershy? And since when would she allow her house to fall into so much disrepair?
Wanderer, you only hate it because you’re biased against human stories!
Well I was going to propose that she could have been Discorded, but there is no magic in your world, and “Applejack” seems to think that’s the way she usually behaves... so... do you not understand that that is NOT how Fluttershy would act?
What are you saying?
Let me write down a list of what you’ve told me...
Mane 6 and yet because they are completely OOC.
Would that be accurate?
I think so...
But, they are not OOC! They just led different lives!
OW, I hate to break it to you, but, like I was telling CU earlier, giving a character the name of a pony does not automatically make them that pony. This is so completely different from FIM that you cannot possibly claim, with a straight face, that it is related to FIM.
Let me make it clear:
There is no element that really connects the characters to the show. And this site is about the show.
It’s not about kids with hippie names going to school with other kids with hippie names.
But I don’t want to write about cartoon ponies! They are not real!
If you don’t want to write about cartoon ponies, what are you doing here? There are plenty of other more realistic animations that have human characters that act more like what you are portraying the characters as.
Why name your characters like ponies when they are humans? MLP has always been about anthropomorphic ponies: they have some human-like qualities, like the ability to talk, and how they react to certain things, but they are not humans given pony form.
When you submit a story and the F.A.Q. says that it has to have something to do with FIM, we really mean it.
The setting and characters have to be at the very least recognizable. And that goes beyond the names.
But, the Mane 6 are simply archetypes!
No. The mane 6 are based off archetypes just like any other character. But they are not archetypes. They are characters; they have a set limitations to their personalities and they have flaws and they have things they like and things they don’t.
Just look at a dictionary for the definition of archetype:
the original pattern or model from which all things of the same kind are copied or on which they are based; a model or first form; prototype.
and of character as is relevant to us:
(of a part or role) representing a personality type, especially by emphasizing distinctive traits, as language, mannerisms, physical makeup, etc.
So, when you make Fluttershy act like a- whatever it is that she’s acting like, you are making her act out of character. What you have there is NOT Fluttershy; it’s a wreck that happens to share the name.
And even if there is a reason for her to be acting that way, it’s not going to relate to FIM because the whole setting... no, the whole world has nothing to do with FIM.
So... how do I know if my fic is related to FIM?
First, ignore the names. Then think about this:
Does FIM take place on Earth? No. No it doesn’t.
Does FIM try to be realistic? No. It doesn’t.
Are the FIM characters American/British/Chinese? No. They aren’t.
It’s one thing to write a story where a pony finds herself in a human body in the middle of Hong Kong, and another thing to have a girl in Hong Kong be named Cheerilee. If that girl acts like and is a genuinely human version of the pony, it’s fine, but if it’s just the name? It isn’t.
I- I see... I guess my fic really doesn’t have much to do with FIM, does it?
No. It does not.
It’s fine, I’ll change the names to ‘Ranma’ and ‘Akane’ and post it on fanfiction.net!
You- yes, please go do that.
So... as long as there are recognizable characters and setting the story should be fine?
Yes, CU, I’m glad at least one of you actually paid attention. At least I know to expect better of you. Let’s see how others handle it.
~thanks for the help, Blue, Arc, lam.