Being a blank-flank filly is tough enough, something all the Cutie Mark Crusaders can attest to. When somepony points out that Apple Bloom has neither fancy magic nor awesome wings, the world can seem downright cruel. Fortunately, she's not alone, and Applejack knows a little story or two.
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58w, 6dHiatus.35 comments · 1,525 views
First, I want to thank everyone who's contributed to, or read, Taken for Granite. The comments and the mails have been far in excess of what I expected from an ApplePie ship-fic not featured on EqD.
I still wonder if I did the right thing in detailing in the authors' notes how hard writing that particular story was for me. Usually, I strive to minimize my own personality because I feel the stories are more important than the individuals who write them. That's the theory, at least, but I think I'm doing a worse job of it with each fic I write. Either way, talking about the process that led to a story is relevant and perhaps interesting to some individuals. Complaining about it being "hard" isn't. At best, it's begging for sympathy. At worst, it changes how people see the story, and that notion fills me with dread.
Regardless, the story has been well enough received, and now that it's all over, I can say I'm glad to have written it. We're moving on.
Those who read these blog posts will know I've had quite a few different stories and ideas I've been toying with. I'm really liking the idea of writing another grand adventure along the lines of Lost and Found and Within and Without. I have a temporarily shelved RariLuna political intrigue/adventure/peril/shipping fic, I have a FlutterDash longer-than-long romance that may become adventure-romance, and I have a number of other less-interesting stories that I want to get around to. Which is it then?
None of the above. I'm going on hiatus for an undetermined period of time.
A while back, I promised myself I would never give people estimates, and that I would never set deadlines for myself. They are sure-fire ways to kill my joy for writing, and this promise helped me recapture much of my love for putting pen to paper—or hoof to keyboard, as it were.
I broke another barrier when I managed to let dead fics lie and kill my need to stick with a story until it was done. Being able to not pick back up the FlutterDashFire story I had, being able to shelve RariLuna for this recent ApplePie, those were all victories.
It's not enough, though.
My relationship with writing has been problematic for a very long time, and it's not getting better. Some people use ponyfic as therapy, as a means to cope, and as relaxation. AbsoluteAnonymous was very vocal about exactly this. Unless I misunderstood or misremember this, writing was a temporary hobby to her, a process of healing that led to her coming out on top. Me, I think I've written myself sick.
Until I can figure this out, I'll be out. I'm sorry for not responding to comments in the foreseeable future, and I'm just as sorry that if I return, my OCD attitude to comments will result in a batch of week, month or year-old comments being replied to.
Naturally, my promise not to set deadlines or give promises might work both ways. I may be writing again next week. I may be writing tomorrow and start posting chapters of some long adventure-fic, but I find it unlikely.
I'm not saying goodbye forever, but right now, I need the peace that comes with a break.
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65w, 4dThe Long Summer13 comments · 376 views
First, I apologize for the long silence. I don't expect people will really have noticed, because that implies people sit on edge waiting for something to happen, for me to do something. Instead, I am the one who gets stressed by inactivity. It goes without saying and without putting it into system that two months' hiatus is worth a lot of stress by that token.
I'm also sorry for neglecting comments and notes. I'm working on that, and will try to catch up. I've done a terrible job at reading all the things I've said I would, too, for which I am also supremely sorry, but I don't know what more to add to that. I've no real excuse, and will get right back on it as soon as I can.
On my front of things, I've aborted work on one story, started work on another, and actually sort of almost completed it. It is currently mid-edit and pending cover art, and there is a chance it will be published in a week or two, or a month--thereabouts. Failing that, if I can't beat it into shape, I'll scrap it and start something else.
I hope you all have had, and continue to have a very pleasant summer. If you're interested in listening to the Muffin Loving Productions guys host me as a guest on a podcast, you can do so here! It was fun, and proves that listening to your own voice later will never be cool.
Back to edits and work.
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That's one more wrapped up! Thank you, everypony who took time to read Twice as Bright. It's been an absolute blast to write, but I definitively need to re-think and re-consolidate my writing/publishing strategy.
By which I mean "Cloudy is a dummy who should've never broken his self-made promise not to publish during the writing process after Lost and Found nearly permanently killed his desire to write." The whole re-thinking line is a lot catchier, so we're rolling with that.
Anyway! Point is, Twice as Bright is done! I am celebrating by staring at excellent, relevant artwork--holy butts that is beautiful and I almost embedded it but I don't know if that's a breach of etiquette--and by planning more stories.
Breaks are for, um. Well. People who take breaks. I mean, I've had a two day break, I suppose, but you're not here to read about me drinking sugar, eating sugar, and eating things not made of sugar but still covered in or frosted with sugar. You're probably here for:
Whenever I finish a story, I like to cleanse my palate. That's a fancy word for scraping your tongue clean. When I first started writing ponyfic, I watched the entire show at least once between each fic. I find this very useful to re-center myself on canon. It probably sounds pretentious or ritualistic, but it's as simple as me valuing starting from scratch very highly.
Lately, I haven't done this. In part because there are a lot more episodes, and not-writing hurts. In part because, without going into detail, there are elements of season 3 that I did not enjoy as much as I had hoped. Still, this time, I'm going to begin by re-watching the show. The last thing I want is to get mired in my own headcanon.
It's been surprisingly long since last I watched season 1, and I absolutely cannot wait.
Second? I plan to read. I plan to read fanfiction I promised I'd read, because I genuinely want to read more fanfic. I plan to read more fanfiction to make a dent in my Read Later list. I plan to read at least one non-pony thing--probably Daetrin's non-pony book, The Demon of Cliffside. I've been wanting to get at that thing for ages now. Before, during and after all this, I'm going to discuss all the ideas I have with my friends.
If I sound very, um, pompous here, it's probably for a reason. I'm the kind of pony who, in writing, makes faces. If I'm writing Pinkie making a grimace, I'm making the very same grimace. If Rarity looks arch and scoffs at something, I'm staring at my computer screen like its very presence offends me--you get the idea. That I'm writing a long piece on this is because it reflects what I want to write. I'm leaning towards something longer. Something grandiose.
That's not to say I'm decided yet, and I've said time and again I hate making promises even to myself. I'm just thinking out loud, and all I know is this:
*The next fic will feature two or more ponies.
*At least one of these two or more ponies will think that one of the other two ponies is really, really cute/swell/nice.
What I suspect is this:
*It probably won't have the majority of its action in Ponyville or Canterlot.
*It will probably involve perceived or very real peril.
In short, I'm thinking another adventure along the lines of Within and Without or Lost and Found. When I say "along the lines of," I really only mean "long adventure," and even that's not set in stone, but I will say I'm looking towards W&W/O with fond memories.
Add to list of things to do before writing: Re-read own adventure fics.
I have no details, and I have tons of other ideas that may make it into fic. A lot of authors seem to do these compilation posts of ideas for fics and such, and I don't know how interesting it is to most, but if I can mention in no particular order:
Those who read my earlier blogs will remember this one. It is one of three ideas I had in my mind a while back. Also, when I say "slightly dark," you have to keep in mind how incredibly resistant I am to darkfic and such. What I call "dark" when I write probably doesn't match others' definitions.
FlutterDash long ship.
Lost and Found really made me want to explore FlutterDash on a deeper level. This is it. The problem is that I'm not sure I can write another non-adventure ship just yet. It'd be fairly intricate and emotional, but I've done a lot of those lately.
Other ships/stories I want to do:
TwiJack - I have an angle that could work. It's Ponyville-centric, so the problem is the same as with FlutterDash, but I really want to do this.
RariLight - I have some very specific unicorn-centric ideas that could be good. May even be a friendship fic. (Cloudy writing non-ship? Ha!)
FlutterDash - I have no less than three other ideas for this ship of varying length, though the goal is to use as much as possible for the fic above.
PinkieShy - Of all the "pure" ships I want to write, this one is very high on the list. Again, same issue as above with it being a pure ship, but if I could make it part of an adventure, I'd be very happy.
AppleDash - Problematic in that the ship's been done to death. That in and by itself isn't the issue, but that I don't know if I'm stepping on others' hooves is. I have two possible angles, one being rather different from the usual ship formula.
ApplePie/RariPie - I have semi-similar ideas for these, but I've written so much heavy emotion Pinkie Pie that this will probably go on the back-burner. Also, it's actually the closest to sad that I'll ever want to go. I could write an ApplePie that I'm sure would be a decent read, yet I'd have no desire to read it myself. That is an odd position to be in.
RariDash - Painful sweetness here, but it needs a framework I haven't worked with yet. One that is neither adventure nor simple long-ship. This will be a challenge, and I'm not convinced yet.
That's basically what's in my head at the moment. The two ideas I had in the last ficwriting deadspace are still very strong, those being RariLuna and FlutterDash. The PinkieShy idea has basically taken the spot of CellyPie now that that's done. Still, I am almost positive that in reading, watching and talking in the coming weeks, I'll have far more ideas to choose from, and hopefully I'll land on one that convinces me fully from the get-go.
If you've read this far, well, damn. I thought about cramming some images in here, but I have no idea what those would be. Sprucing it up with images just to make more people read it is silly anyway. I figure people will read if they're interested, and if they are--if you are--I'm flattered.
In Other News
There's a reason for that Within and Without tag other than "hey I may write something similar." If you've problems with the downloadable formats available through FiMFiction, there's an awesome guy by name of JeffersonPeters who took it upon himself to provide a superior alternative. Here is a downloadable ePub variant of W&W/O for all your reading pleasure! I don't have a fancy reading thingermabob, but I'm told it's quite good.
It's worth noting that he used alternative cover art in the .epub file, and the artist hasn't yet responded to the request for permission to use it, but there should be a link with attribution and everything in there. The real problem, though, is that the artist's dA has been taken down since, and redirects. Still working on that.
That's it! Thank you for your time. If you hate me for abusing your eyes for italics, well, at least I didn't use comic sans. I'm gonna get around to replying to comments on TaB as soon as I can, but know that I've read them all, and that I'm floored (and thankful!) for all the comments!
82w, 3dMarch Apologies, Twice as Bright52 comments · 526 views
I am just leaving a quick note here to say that I'm sorry for not responding to PM's, comments or mails for the moment. I've tried to keep on top of things, but it's just not working out. If you're just tuning in, or if you've recently left a comment or sent me a PM, I am very happy to make your acquaintance, please don't doubt that -- I can only apologize for the delayed response.
I'm having a bad time of it, and I need to readjust. There's no drama, and everything that's failing is related to my lacking ability to deal with things that are beyond my control.
Fic updates will go along as planned because quite frankly, I don't know how to stop. Twice as Bright will likely continue at one chapter per week unless something changes.