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  • E Three Little Apples

    Twilight finds that some important information is missing in a book about the Apple family history.
    3,405 words · 2,780 views  ·  312  ·  2
  • E Somepony's Daughter

    Applejack and Rainbow Dash have a heart to heart while waiting for a train.
    2,450 words · 4,056 views  ·  370  ·  4
  • T A Fact for Twilight

    When Applejack asks Twilight on a date, Twilight realizes something about AJ that she never noticed.
    5,173 words · 9,267 views  ·  1,065  ·  19
  • E The Importance of Being Earth Ponies

    Applejack and Pinkie Pie teach Apple Bloom what's so special about being an earth pony.
    2,345 words · 4,784 views  ·  410  ·  5
  • E Of Cottages and Cloud Houses

    Fluttershy and Rainbow Dash both move into their first homes, and they aren't what they had in mind
    4,641 words · 1,723 views  ·  182  ·  1
  • T Best Young Flyer

    Scoot trains with Dash to be Best Young Flyer, but could something more develop?
    32,833 words · 4,795 views  ·  442  ·  7
  • T Wet Feathers

    Applejack knew that long distance relationships are hard, but Rainbow Dash's dream-come-true is turning into a nightmare for her. With the newest Wonderbolt on the cover of magazines and tabloids, AJ decides if love is enough to hold them togeth
    12,375 words · 6,599 views  ·  906  ·  27
  • E Wisdom is Just Being Old

    Applejack is the last element left. But that's just life.
    2,173 words · 1,553 views  ·  165  ·  2

Blog Posts319

  • Today
    A new fic on a new pony site!

    I published a new pony fanfic. Just not here.

    Rangelost, a regular on the AppleDash forums, has opened the beta of Equestriart-- a new pony website, primarily for artists, but with writing/blogging capabilities as well. Think of it like Fimfiction is to Fanfiction.net as Equestriart is to Deviantart.

    In the interest of messing around with stuff, I posted a little 1000 word story there that I've been sitting on for a year, unable to decide if I should subject it to the gnashing jaws of FiMfiction. So you can check it out here: bookplayer's Equestriart page (It's called A Moonlight Torture, and it's Discord with background AppleShy.)

    And if you're curious about the site, especially if you know or are an artist, it's nice! It's not focused on fiction publishing, so FiMfiction is still going to be the best spot for writers, but if I was an artist, I'd set up shop there. It's more attractive than deviantart, which makes it a million times more attractive than derpiboo.ru. It's pony focused (unlike deviantart) and creator focused (unlike derpiboo.ru,) and the creator pages are very customizable. (I did not take advantage of this yet, but the capability is there.)

    If there are complaints, the primary one would be that after registration, getting things set up can be a little counter-intuitive-- it took some playing around for me to figure out how to get a story posted, and Rangelost admits that documentation for some of the systems is next on his list. Also, obviously, there are barely any users yet, but with any luck that will change. I think it's a worthy addition to the MLP community, and worth messing around with.

    I'm not an artist at all, but I'll probably use it to post stories that are too short or weird for me to post here. So if you join there, friend me!

    10 comments · 170 views
  • Tuesday
    What's So Great About AppleDash

    I’ve never written much about AppleDash, mainly because what I would write about is shown much more clearly in my fics, especially The AppleDash Project, which really hits on everything I think is awesome about this ship. But in the interest of fairness, I’m finally going to share my thoughts and explain how AppleDash is the most romantic ship...

    AppleDash is not a traditionally romantic ship. That honor goes to FlutterDash and RariJack.

    But AJ and Dash really shine as a couple because AppleDash is the best funny, down-to-earth, slice of life ship. Applejack and Rainbow Dash make a stable-but-messy couple who can take what life throws and come back for more. AJ and Dash are a couple you’d want to invite to a barbeque, because they seem fun and relaxed and might butt heads in a snarky way, but not end up flipping tables at each other.  

    Applejack and Rainbow Dash fight, second only to Rarity and Applejack, but where a RariJack argument tends to take over an entire plot or subplot and turn into wild demonstrations, AJ and Dash are more likely to bicker verbally, or possibly turn to a competition to solve it.

    This makes sense, because they’re characters who are both very, very different, but still share a lot of the same values. They both value courage, physical prowess, honesty, and straightforward solutions. They call it like they see it. Their approach to solving most problems will be the same, or at least totally understandable to the other, building a deep mutual respect between them. But at the same time, Applejack is an earth pony’s earth pony, tied to her land, focused on family and community. She’s a nurturer at heart, and steeped in responsibility and personal honor. Dash, on the other hand, is the model of pegasi ideals; she’s ambitious and focused on individual excellence, with a taste for grand adventure. She’s also a dreamer who easily gets wrapped up in any amusement or novelty that strikes her fancy.

    This means that as a couple they can have a strong core built on values they share and an understanding of the other and how she thinks. Applejack might not want the adventure of being a Wonderbolt herself, but the goal fits in with the deeper values she holds so it would seem undeniably worthy to her. Similarly, Dash might never want to be a farmer herself, but it’s simple and straightforward enough that she can understand the reasons AJ would want to do it.

    But at the same time, they still clash frequently, both directly and indirectly. Directly, they’re likely to dig their hooves in on different sides of an issue, understanding both sides equally well but thinking the other is just wrong due to the different weight they give to aspects of their lives or the cultures they were raised in. Indirectly, they develop a problem and go about their own business until it becomes big enough to be the other pony’s problem as well.

    They also have communication issues, but they stem more from withholding information from each other that not being able to understand what the other is saying: Applejack tends to keep personal problems inside and not reveal weakness to the ponies who could help her. Dash is often thoughtless enough that she doesn’t realize that she should tell other ponies something, and she’d rather ask forgiveness than permission if she’s pretty sure other ponies would object.

    A quick aside: Many people cite their competitive streaks as being a potential problem between Applejack and Rainbow Dash, but I think it rarely would be. People who argue this seem to miss a major aspect of both characters: they both love competition. It’s their hobby. When they have a day off, they go looking for a pony to compete with. This could easily drive a different pony crazy: if Dash kept trying to compete with Twilight, she might eventually ask if every darn thing has to be a competition. But Applejack is unlikely to ask that, because what’s wrong with every darn thing being a competition? It keeps a pony on their hooves. Not to mention that, as a romantic couple, they’re no longer single competitors: they’re a team, and a team that’s likely to be unstoppable when they work together. Competition is as likely to drive Applejack and Rainbow Dash together as it is to break them apart.

    So, AJ and Rainbow Dash are a couple that finds themselves in minor conflict again and again, but will undoubtedly return to a core understanding to patch things up before moving on to the next petty squabble. They’re the least likely to show a “romantic” side in the traditional sense, and most writers have to content themselves with a kiss and some private cuddles in the apple orchard or barn to show the loving side of the couple. That’s cool and all, but we’re talking about romance. How is that romantic?

    AppleDash is really the ultimate sitcom-style couple. Like any couple on a long running TV show, they have their frequent ups and downs, but they settle easily into a loving relationship.  

    They work better than any couple in episodic fics, or "wacky situation" fics like Those Blue Wings or What Would Daring Do? that let them run around like crazy ponies for a while before they fall into each other's forelegs. They also work well as a side plot in a fic about one or the other of them, without stealing the center stage. They're a great comedy duo, and a couple you want to watch having conversations and arguments about little things, reacting to each other with a mixture of love, friendship, and teasing.

    AJ can easily fall into the role of stoic, dry-witted, long-suffering anchor for Dash's antics, and Dash is the best character on the show at both going over-the-top and then realizing that she went over the top and coming back, slightly embarrassed, for some cuddles and reassurance that their love will always be there anyway. Or you can play AJ’s love of tradition and more country mannerisms off of Dash’s more urban coolness and modern attitudes. In any case, teasing will be a major part of any dynamic; both characters are thick skinned, understand each other enough to both dish it out and take it without really hurting each other, and flawed enough for the audience to enjoy a joke at either’s expense.

    I think this might be one of the reasons for AppleDash’s continued popularity (other than Tchernobog’s evangelism): it’s a very comfortable ship both to read and write. Most of the serious AppleDash fics are tempered with humor, and you probably already know how the character’s interactions will play out. In the same way it’s always nice to catch an old episode of a sitcom you like, picking up (or writing) an AppleDash fic is unlikely to be a new and exciting experience, it’s more likely to be checking in with old friends and remembering how well this works.

    Now, this isn’t to say that AppleDash can’t do drama. Often it does it quite well because it’s unexpected and a little messier than other ships-- watching two ponies who aren’t good with their feelings muddle through something emotional gives a “feels” fic a realistic edge that more romantic ships can have trouble finding. It grounds it in something inherently stable, which makes shaking it mean that much more.

    Another place AppleDash doesn’t do well, unexpectedly, is adventure. On their own, AJ and Dash are great additions to an adventure fic: they’re the fighters of the mane six, and the two ponies who will never back down from a job that needs doing, no matter the risk. But together, the romance between them doesn’t have enough tension to support a grand romance plot, they think too similarly for a “your-way-or-my-way” plot, and they tend to fall short on quiet, tender moments when they’re under stress.

    But if you’re looking for a romance story that’s funny and not that mushy and makes you feel like the couple spends enough time hanging out that they know the other’s taste in music even if they still think it sucks (except for Tawny Cash. He’s cool.), AppleDash is your ship.

    You know, I don’t feel like that was as eloquent as my arguments for FlutterDash or RariJack. As I said in the opening, I tend to save my AppleDash arguments for the fics, so if you want my eloquent opinion of AppleDash, I suggest checking out the AppleDash Project chapter What’s So Great About Cider.

    Thanks to my October subscribers: Ultiville, Jake R, Kiro Talon, Singularity Dream, bats, Merc the Jerk, nemopemba, diremane, First_Down, sopchoppy, Not Worthy, jlm123hi and stormgnome. If you want to see your name in links, or get other fabulous prizes, check out this post for information on how to subscribe: Subscription Info.

    19 comments · 225 views
  • 1w, 3d
    Talking about Talking (What I know about dialogue)

    In the post I made offering incomplete stories and outlines for adoption, I noted that most of them contained unattributed bits of dialogue, because that’s how I write my rough drafts. That happens for a few reasons: it makes a good notation device because I can probably remember the scene and story based off of that; it lets me check out the emotional flow of the story without having to get the whole thing written (since I’m a big believer that character interactions should carry an emotional storyline;) and when I come up with something funny or heartfelt it’s usually a line of dialogue, so this way I don’t forget it.  

    There’s both some cause and effect in this. I truly believe that dialogue is the most important part of 90% of the fics out there. There are exceptions, of course, but usually they’re intended to be exceptions-- people don’t just happen to write a fic about two characters where there’s no dialogue or it’s unimportant, and often those fics are impressive because that’s a huge limit to place on yourself. But dialogue is the most natural way of “showing” character interactions and relationships; what characters say to each other and how they say it shows how they feel and how that changes as they talk.

    For the most part, dialogue comes to me naturally. A scene plays in my head, and I write down what the characters say. But I’m also picky about dialogue in the fics I read, so I do think about what makes it work, and what’s wrong when it’s not working. I thought those thoughts might be useful to some people, so I decided

    Dialogue is kind of a funny thing in writing, the “rules” are relaxed; grammar can be mangled, words can be used incorrectly or inefficiently, sentence fragments or run on sentences are all a-okay… as long as it reflects the character talking. To that end, knowing the characters you’re writing and writing dialogue go hand in hand.

    One thing I’ve always found useful is to slightly exaggerate the voice of the character you’re writing. If they would have a limited vocabulary, make sure they don’t use words that are really specific. If they have an accent that changes the sound of words or their usage, that’s important to make clear. This might seem like just “how writing is,” but I can illustrate because in fanfiction we have a point of comparison.

    On the show, the writers can get away with making character voices less clear or obvious, because we can hear the literal character voices. A line of dialogue doesn’t need to “sound like Rainbow Dash” because Ashleigh Ball is going to say it and it will literally sound like Rainbow Dash. So, if you read the transcripts, the characters don’t really talk like themselves that much, because so much comes from the cadence, tone, and inflection in the actual show.

    In books and stories, we have to convey the same voice with words, so we have to use word choice and sentence structure to make people hear the difference between Rainbow Dash and Rarity. Bad Horse put it best a while ago, in response to a comment I gave him: “Point being that writing dialogue that a character might say might be realistic, but it isn't as good as writing dialogue that a character might say, and no other character would.”

    Now, the other side of this coin is that you don’t want to go to the other extreme. Too much of a written accent, over-using catch phrases, or over-emphasizing vocabulary differences can make a character feel like a parody of themselves (and, in the case of accents or intellectual vocabulary, make your story harder to read.)  

    I find the happy medium in combining these things for each character and trying to use different ones in each line. For example, Rarity has a kind of catch phrase in using “darling” as a pet name, she uses upper-class language and some sprinkled British-isms (shall instead will, for example,) and she has an extensive vocabulary (she uses words that often surprise me for a kids show.) Using any one of these things in every line she has, or worse, all three, will make her sound like a joke. But alternating them between lines, with some more neutral lines thrown in for good measure, will result in a Rarity that sounds more “Rarity-like” than the show (so that we can hear her in Tabitha St. Germian’s voice) but not like some rip-off of Rarity that’s trying extra hard to be “real.”

    Accents are a little different, in that they should be consistent, but the key there is to use as little of one as you can while still mimicking what the accent sounds like. Personally, I’m against using “Ah” for “I” in the Apple’s accent, because I feel like drastically changing the spelling of the word makes it something that people need to translate, which makes reading harder. And that goes for anything else where the word doesn’t retain most of its original letters (with the exception of “ya” for “you,” which is common enough in English that it’s regularly used in things like the title to Trade Ya, making it more recognizable.) There’s no right way to write it, but this is a place where less is more.

    This brings me to another important subject in dialogue, one that’s separated from characterization. Timing. The time it takes for the character to say something, where they pause is especially important in comedy, but it can be equally important in other kinds of conversations between characters. There are a lot of jokes out there that aren’t as funny if a character doesn’t pause for a second before delivering the punchline. At the same time, pausing for a second before saying “I love you” back to another character can totally change the meaning of the response.

    As writers, we have some limited control over how fast people read things and where they pause. This comes in two major ways: the number/length of the words you use, and punctuation.

    When it comes to number and length of words, fewer or shorter words are going to make people read it faster, which will feel like the character is speaking more quickly. This is where accent comes in, when we combine words it can change how quickly they’re read: “Gotta” reads more quickly than “Got to,” “y’all” reads more quickly than “you all.” But this isn’t limited to accent, having a character like Twilight or Rarity say “agreed” is faster than “I agree.”

    This extends to dialogue tags, as well. If a character is responding to something quickly, don’t put the tag in front of it, and if it’s part of a quick exchange consider not tagging it at all. If you must tag, just use said. On the other hand, if you want to draw out what the character is saying, long and descriptive tags give the words more heft, and make them feel like the character is thinking about them more.

    The other way of controlling timing is with punctuation. That’s among the things punctuation is for, actually, it tells readers where and how long to pause. But dialogue is a place where people will let you play with it to get the right timing for a line. People understand that if Pinkie is talking in one long run-on sentence, it’s her excitedly barreling through the thoughts, or that if Twilight responds with a phrase with a period between each word, she’s saying something very slowly and clearly.  

    So that’s how to control your timing. In order to know when you need to control it, imagine the character saying the line, or read the scene out loud as you have it written down, paying attention to punctuation. Are characters pausing in the spots your punctuation is showing? Are the jokes getting lost under a bunch of words? Cut the words from the dialogue and tags. Is the emotion feeling terse and rushed? Add words to those places, even Big Mac can have a detailed and descriptive tag added to give his “nope” more emotion behind it. If a character is pausing in a weird place, or hesitating before they say something, there’s punctuation to show that. Don’t be afraid to use it, even if it’s incorrect in a technical sense.

    Since I touched on dialogue tags, let me talk about them for a second. Common wisdom is to limit yourself to said, asked, and a few others. This is to avoid something known as “said bookism,” where authors get… fanciful with their dialogue tags: “she expressed,” “he insinuated,” “she acknowledged.” This often happens because authors get nervous using the same words over and over again (this problem is also the cause of Lavender Unicorn Syndrome, where people use description in the place of names) This is annoying to some readers, because dialogue tags are supposed to blend in. All they’re doing is letting you know who’s speaking. But an unexpected word calls attention to itself, often unnecessarily.  

    At the same time, words mean things, and sometimes you don’t mean that she said something, you mean that she acknowledged it, or admitted it. There are connotations there that imply tone of voice or even body language, and if your goal is to let people hear the conversation the way you hear it in your head then using the right word can help you.

    The solution here is two parts: First, don’t be afraid of said. If the connotations of the dialogue are clear enough, use said. The only reason to use anything else is if the line itself could be interpreted in different ways, and the situation and actions around it can’t differentiate between them. Second, when you don’t use said, use a short, simple replacement. “Agreed” is less conspicuous than “acknowledged,” “shouted” is better than “exclaimed.” If you do use a longer tag, it had better be because it exactly expresses how the line was said, and this should not need to happen with most lines.

    So far, this has all been technical stuff about how to write what you want the characters to say. The next part is about what you want the characters to say.

    Showing and telling works differently in dialogue. In narration, showing and telling is an stylistic choice. In dialogue, it’s another part of characterization. Different characters will come right out and tell you different things about how they’re feeling. It’s perfectly valid and in character for Rarity to announce and detail the depths of her despair to anypony within ear shot, and if nopony is around she’ll tell Opal; Twilight might be more hesitant and only tell one of her friends privately; and getting Pinkie to verbally admit that she’s sad and explain why is like pulling Gummy’s teeth. Exposition works the same way: Rarity will happily tell everypony about her latest crush, Twilight has no problem explaining the history of the ruins they’re exploring. The opposite wouldn’t always hold true.

    There are some things that almost any character will tell. If they’ve been thinking about their love for another character for the whole story, they can go ahead and let loose with a nice speech about it at the end. The point of showing, rather than telling, is to let the readers experience the feeling of something rather than telling them to feel it-- the other character would probably rather just be told, since they don’t have access to narration.

    When people accuse a story of having “tell-y dialogue,” they usually mean that characters are talking about things they wouldn’t normally talk about that are supposed to tell the reader how they feel. It would be unusual for Applejack to randomly tell her brother how much she loves farming. If the author wanted to make it clear that Applejack does, in fact, love farming, they should probably show it.

    But you can use dialogue for that, too! Applejack might not tell Mac that she loves farming, but it certainly would be in character for her to be cheerfully talking about plans for planting a new field, or developing a new apple hybrid. In romance fics, I’ve talked before about “conversations about stuff” that show the pairing interacting in the way a couple would over something ordinary, rather than just talking about their relationship.

    The key with these showing conversations is not to let them overstay their welcome. Give people a good scene to understand the emotions involved, but end it before it turns into fluff or filler. Of course, tolerances for fluff vary depending on the person and the emotions involved, so this really depends on the kind of fic you’re writing, but it’s something to keep in mind if you find yourself writing a scene that’s supposed to show that Applejack and Twilight are in love that’s a whole chapter long.  

    That’s about it, but I’ll finish off with one final trick I use: if there’s a conversation you need in a fic, and you can’t figure out how the subject would come up, start off with the characters talking about something else. Actually, any dialogue can benefit from this, conversations shift and turn around all the time, and as long as it’s not meandering (unless that’s what you’re going for) a subject shift will feel realistic and get you to where you want to go.

    If you need for the mane six to talk about their dating history, rather than the tired “truth or dare” cliche, try having them talking about gifts they’ve gotten, and have one of them bring up a gift from an ex. If you need Rainbow Dash to let slip to Applejack about the crush she has on Rarity, start the conversation about exercise routines and have Dash know more than one commonly would about how Rarity keeps in shape.

    Obviously you don’t have to do this, characters sometimes go to other characters to talk about something, and talk about that thing. But in that case, you probably know how to bring it up (however the character would bring it up.) If you don’t know how it would come up, it’s probably something that they wouldn’t normally talk about, so talking about something else first just makes sense.

    And that’s everything I can think to say about writing right now.

    Don't forget about GhostOfHeraclitus' offer: a $50 donation to me entitles you to a blog post on a subject of your choice from him, in addition to one from me!

    Thanks to my October subscribers: Ultiville, Jake R, Kiro Talon, Singularity Dream, bats, Merc the Jerk, nemopemba, diremane, First_Down, sopchoppy, Not Worthy, jlm123hi and stormgnome. If you want to see your name in links, or get other fabulous prizes, check out this post for information on how to subscribe: Subscription Info.

    2 comments · 220 views
  • 1w, 6d
    Friends doing Stuff... and an AMA because why not?

    First of all, RaylanKrios claimed one of my unfinished fics from the post I made a few days ago, and he finished it up and posted it already! So, if you're interested in a fic I co-wrote (AppleDash and Flarity) check out Operation Hearts and Hooves Day. I know I'm amused by it.

    Second, the incomparable GhostOfHeraclitus has made an awesomely generous offer: anyone who donates to my blog who would receive a custom blog post from me ($50) can also request one from him. More info on his offer is here, and if you want to rush to donate you can find the links in this post.

    Finally, I've been meaning to do this for a while. Go ahead and ask me anything in the comments.

    24 comments · 243 views
  • 2w, 19h
    Partially written fics and outlines, free to a good home

    Here’s the deal: I write a lot. I just don’t write a lot on any one project. In my 2+ years in the fandom, I’ve accumulated probably over a hundred half-finished projects.

    Most of them aren’t much more than a concept and a couple of paragraphs. Some of them are things that I might get back to one day, if I’m in the mood. (This actually does happen. The current fics I’m working on are ideas that I started over a year ago.) But sometimes I wrote something and really have to admit that I’m probably never going to use it. And sometimes it’s outlined or written in such a way that you could probably follow it as it is.

    So I’m offering some of those to you lovely people. If you’re looking for a fic idea, here are some that are fully developed, even partially written, and waiting for you to finish them up and post them to your account to reap the internet fame that comes with them. This is not to say that they don't have problems-- several are controversial subjects or takes on a subject, some have pacing or focus issues and might need to be reworked.

    I do have some ground rules:

    · If you claim a fic, you are invited to use anything I’ve written for it, or to totally disregard everything I’ve written, or anything in between. Feel free to make the fic your own in any way you like.

    · If you use one of these and you don’t alter it drastically, I’d like it if you toss me some credit for it. Whether it’s as an “idea by” or co-author depends on your view and how much you used of my actual writing, but since I did do some of the work I feel like it’s fair to ask for a mention.

    · I’m happy to answer questions about what I was thinking and read over a draft, but I’ve done all the writing on these I plan to do. Don’t expect me to be adding more scenes or anything.

    · Claim them in the comments of this post. Claims will be honored in order they hit the site, so look first to make sure the one you want is still free, and don’t forget to refresh if you’ve been hemming and hawing.

    One-shots in various stages of completion (warning: Most of these contain scenes of unattributed dialogue, which is how I usually write drafts. If you aren’t sure who’s talking, feel free to make it up, or ask me.):

    Claimed. Help -- TwiJack/Comedy -- Applejack and Twilight are having a nice, quiet lunch date. Or rather, they’d like to be having a nice quiet lunch date, if their friends could take care of their own problems for one afternoon.

    Claimed. Operation: Hearts and Hooves -- Flarity & AppleDash/Comedy -- Rarity decides that Applejack’s Hearts and Hooves day present for Rainbow Dash isn’t romantic enough. Fluttershy decides the same thing about Rainbow Dash’s present for Applejack. They each set out to help their friends, but find that romance doesn’t work the same way for everypony.

    Claimed. Untitled RariJack -- Romance -- When Rarity is at the end of her rope in need to an emerald to finish an order, Applejack comes through with the only one to be had in the town or surrounding countryside. But Rarity recognizes it, a gift she gave Applejack long ago, when they were fillies and Rarity was unable to decide what her feelings for Applejack were. Knowing that Applejack kept it all these years makes her reconsider.

    Untitled RariJack Vacation -- Romance/Comedy -- For Rarity and Applejack’s first vacation together, Applejack has agreed to look after a relative's farm, but she won’t tell Rarity exactly where.


    Town and Country -- AppleDash/Comedy -- The mane six are invited to a week at Fancy Pants’ country estate. Applejack and Rainbow Dash are faced with a whole mess of fancy pony rules, and need to do their best to follow them to help Rarity. (subplots include a romance between an OC noble and OC housemaid, and Pinkie running a spy ring with all the children at the estate.)

    Opposite Expectations -- Romance -- Applejack and Rainbow Dash make a bet over who would be the best marefriend. So they grab Rarity and Fluttershy respectively, and try to out-do each other, but they find love isn’t that easy when it’s with the wrong pony.

    Fillyfooler -- Slice of Life -- Applejack thought her friends knew she was gay, but it turns out she was wrong. When they find out, Applejack has to reel in several different kinds of crazy.

    Applejack Harem Thing -- Romance -- Set years in the future, Twilight has been living in Canterlot, but she returns to Ponyville to find out why all of her friends have moved to Sweet Apple Acres to be part of what the Canterlot ponies are calling “Applejack’s Herd.”

    Finally, this is nowhere near all of the stuff I have that I'm not going to use, this batch was just the most organized and thought out. Maybe in the future I'll make a post with bits and pieces if people are interested, but in the mean time if you're looking for an idea for a certain genre and characters, and it sounds like something I might write, feel free to ask me. I might have something I can offer.  

    29 comments · 389 views
  • ...

Seasons one and two are now complete! Season three is being continued in The AppleDash Project: Wherever Life Takes Us.

The AppleDash project is a series of short fics attached to various episodes, detailing a relationship between Rainbow Dash and Applejack behind the scenes. The stories take place sometime during or shortly after the indicated episode.

This is not meant to start shipping wars, argue that AppleDash is canon, or offend other shippers. In fact, if you like the idea I encourage you to try it with other ships!

Teen rating means that there may be talking about sex, and there is one line of dialogue that takes place during intimate relations, but it's warned for and skippable. Nothing sexual is described.

First Published
3rd May 2012
Last Modified
9th Aug 2012

I'm not an AppleDash fan. Straight up going to admit to that. However the idea of this really interests me, it's actually quite brilliant. Will be sure to keep up with this.

I really like this, I think you've got something good going on here. I agree with repivemag, this idea is really different from all the other AppleDash fics. I say continue! :twilightsmile:

Dash's reaction seemed OOC... yet funny... :rainbowlaugh:


Thanks! I do love AppleDash, but there are other ships I like too, and I like friend-shipping just as much. I'd love to see other people run with the idea, even with non-romantic pairings.


Thank you. I've been trying to do some things a little differently from what I've read, so I hope it pays off!


I'm sorry, next time hopefully I'll be both IC AND funny. Glad I got at least one of the two, though!

Ahhh, sweet. The old classic Appledash, with added cuteness and a good "staring down Big Mac" scene. Tracking! :ajsmug:


Yet this fic still is one of those fics so far that doesn't make me hate it like *snap* that, so congradulations to you or whatever. The concept on this is pretty interesting I'll give you that.

I hate the shipping, the fic though......I like it.:twilightsmile:

I'd like to see more of this. I started out liking shipping with this pairing. So, this story, I like :twilightsmile:

This is just..... SWAG!



Thanks so much!


Thanks. . . I think? Do you not like shipping in general, or is AppleDash just not your ship? Either way, I'm glad you don't hate it. :ajsmug:


Thank you! There will be more, I promise.


Thanks! Glad you like it!

love it, moar :rainbowkiss:

Finally something that moves at normal people(pony) speed! Not ending up in bed after the first chapter or something. Looks like its going to be a good read! fav time. :pinkiehappy:


Not AppleDash in general, just anything with Dash as a lesbian.:raritywink:

I approve.  ^^

I just wish Dash would turn down the 'I'm so awesome stuff'.  She's full of pride and known to pet herself on the back in front of others, but she doesn't boast till the cows come home.  Many authors seem to write Rainbow Dash in this way, and I think they are exaggerating.  Other than that, you've written Rainbow Dash pretty good in this first chapter.

Applejack is sounding good.  

So far so good, for a post Iron Pony story.  ^^


Thank you! More is coming.


I know! Other then Twilight's List, fanfic sometimes makes it seem like ponies don't even bother to date, they just hesitantly admit that they love each other and jump into bed. That's one of the things I like about this, it gives me a chance to let a relationship develop over time.

I'll have more soon!


I understand. I ask because I'm pretty open to ships, but I have a strange aversion to FlutterDash. I see it, I just can't like it for some reason. . . but there are enough fanfics to go around!


I hope the second story was a little better in the Dash=awesome department. I'll be keeping what you said in mind, the "I'm so awesome" is a cheap way to characterize Dash, and should probably be used sparingly.

However, I'll warn you that I'm writing the third one now, and it takes place after "Sonic Rainboom." So Dash is going to be (understandably) high off her win, heroics, and day with the Wonderbolts. Don't give up on me for that one, Dash will calm down in the future.

>>544021" Glad that you understand:twilightsmile:

with such an approach from dash, I would be mad too

epitome of cockiness there, RD:rainbowwild:

Daaaaw, that's so cute. :twilightsmile:


Yeah, I don't think that Dash is usually that bad, but after the events of the episode I could see her starting to slip into "Mysterious Mare-Do-Well" levels of ego.


Thanks, glad you like it!

I love this!  MOAR!!

How excellent is was that AJ and Rainbow came to an understanding about privacy.  :rainbowkiss: :ajsmug:


:heart: Dash!


Thank you! Next update will be in the next few days, and will be a double update.

Y'know, I don't really think RD's reaction is really out of character. We gotta remember that she does have hella insecure moments at times and something like this would probably a large load off her shoulders. Hell, I'd say that the phrase "I'm awesome" for her, while undeniably true, is almost as much a defense mechanism, somewhat.

Forgot to add that I enjoyed this chapter and hope to see more.:twilightsheepish:

Wooo double update, well next time! Really liking that it is based off of eps. Now after reading this I now realise that I have to get up in 6 hrs.

:pinkiecrazy: Confound ponies....


That's more or less what I was thinking. Dash is often a big ball of insecurity with a cocky grin pasted on. She has a lot of respect for AJ, so for AJ to agree to go out with her is proof in Dash's mind that Dash is awesome. And she's always happy to latch onto that proof.

Interestingly, I think there's a pretty good argument that Applejack has a much bigger ego then Dash (Applebuck Season, The Last Round Up, and Super Speedy etc. . .) She doesn't crow as loud, but she expects way more of herself.

Here, have some of my thoughts! :ajsmug: Really, thanks for reading, there will be more very soon.


Thanks! I think this is a neat idea, it's kind of like a prompt challenge with episodes being the prompts. When I finish this (which might be a while, even though I'm not using every episode I have a ways to go,) I might try it with a non-shipping theme. . . Maybe Dash and Scoot would be fun, or the Apple family.

And ponies or sleep? There's a question? :scootangel:


Mhm, exactly what I was thinking when I read this.

Also, while I didn't really give it much thought until now, I completely agree about Applejack. As you said, prideful, but not boastful.

No problem, I'm really looking forward to more of this. To be honest, you actually inspired me to try my hand at this concept, I really like it, but I'm waaaay too busy at the moment. :facehoof:

That was adaaaawable :rainbowkiss:

Aw, cute. I really like how this is different than other Appledash fics. Keep up the great writing :pinkiehappy:

Another great chapter! I like how you have Dash and AJ acting normally and actually discussing relationship issues, as opposed to them being all "My burning love for you is eternal and unexplainable! Angst!" like some fics. Also, I love your update speed. honestly, its commendable. And Pinkie's private party is awesome :pinkiehappy:


Thanks so much!


Thank you! Part of that is the format, it's hard to have too much angst when next episode they're supposed to be back to normal, but part is that I refuse to make AJ and Dash woobies* in general. Fluttershy is designated woobie on this show, tyvm. :fluttershysad: Everyone else can discuss their problems like semi-normal ponies.

Update speed is prone to change, but this style of story (one scene, lots of dialogue) is the easiest for me to write, so I shouldn't lag too much. If I start to slow down a lot, feel free to poke me! I don't mind!

The private party came out of the question "How do you get PInkie to NOT throw a party?"

*Warning for TV Tropes link. :twilightsmile:

:rainbowlaugh::rainbowlaugh: epic ending

HA!!! FIRST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Keep up the good story!:pinkiehappy:

dat ending; god i love Dash

Dash wins. Though, the Little Strongheart bit was a bit much. Still, good humor all around.

>>562799 and >>562822

Thanks! Every relationship needs a little trolling.


Thank you! Working on the next one now.


Yeah, I was iffy over the Little Strongheart thing as well. It's mostly to start establishing background since this is supposed to lead into my already written fic "A Very Long Day", but I feel like I handled it a little clumsily here. I'll do better next time.

Thanks for the feedback!

:rainbowlaugh::rainbowlaugh::rainbowlaugh: DAT ENDING!!!

I think there was actually a clopfic of that very idea featured not 3 weeks ago!

Haha! Oh man, Dash just pwned AJ! Classic!!!



I am not surprised there's a clopfic. I can no longer be surprised by clopfic. Of course, the clopfic authors seem to take that as a challenge. . .


Glad you liked it!

great ending! Most natural relationship on Fimfiction plus 5 internet points sir or madam. Hey random question would you be willing to do pre-reads?

XD!!!! The end of this chapter was so perfect. *gigglefits*


Thank you! I was hoping it wouldn't come off as too mean, but it felt natural to me.

And the short answer to your question is yes, I've go no problem doing pre-reads. For the longer answer, I'll send you a message.


Thanks! You know, I knew I put that comedy tag up there for a reason. :twilightsmile:

o v O anypony else find that Twi gif a creepy besides the gryphon?  srsly, go take a cold shower Twi!

Anywho, ah do enjoy were this AppleDash is heading,  looks like this is a strong way to make a lastin' couple with this project of yers.


I'm glad! Hopefully I'll continue on that path.


I like the gif because I'm the author, and ALL comments are love. But I do kind of feel like Twilight is looking over my shoulder as I work on the next chapter now. :twilightsmile:

I'm glad you're enjoying it! I guess every shipping fic is written to show what the author likes about the pairing, but this is my entry into the discourse.

I laughed so hard at Dash talking to AJ about the tree! Again, awesome work, good balance of serious conversation and humor. Pffft, Splinters :rainbowlaugh:


make it count, dashie


It's Rainbow Dash! How could she not? :rainbowderp: :rainbowdetermined2:


Thank you so much! I do my best to keep things balanced out.

At least somepony has planed for any situation.  And they say she packs too much~

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