Mistaken for Strangers Commentary · 10:05am
I thought I’d say a few words about my writing process for Mistaken for Strangers, like I did for The Lucky One (That can be found at the end of my fanfiction.net version). It seemed more appropriate to make it its own blog post than to tack it on to the end of the last chapter.
This story was both easier and harder to write than The Lucky One. The actual writing itself was easier. For one, I had more of a general idea of where I wanted the story to go before I started. The harder part was editing. Well, not really the editing itself, but getting myself to do it. I worked a lot with Hyperexponential from ponychan to try and get it up to shape (he really did an outstanding job by the way; he really helped me tighten up and improve upon a lot of major elements). There was a lot of back and forth between us, which went fine at first, but as the story drew near completion I found myself more and more reluctant to work on it. After Hyperexponential and I finished, I got one more quick review from Ponyfanficer, and I found I simply could not bring myself to put the finishing touches on the story and upload it. It sat waiting for a couple months before I finally managed to finish it. I found it helped if I left the house and worked on it at someplace like Starbucks (Yes, I’m one of those pretentious jerks you see typing away on their laptop at Starbucks so that all the world can look on in wonder). I think the reason I had writers block on this story and not on The Lucky One, is that I had gone into writing The Lucky One with no real expectations. My goal had been simply been to actually write a complete story, rather than create some masterpiece. After I wrote it, and it was received fairly well, I suddenly felt any sequel would have to live up to its success. So really I suppose it was fear that was blocking me, something which I already knew can stifle creativity and should be dealt with, but there is a difference between knowing and doing. Nonetheless, I did manage to complete it, and I think it lives up to the prequel.
In keeping with my first story, I decided to use song names as chapter titles. While I’m happy with the result, I admit I first started doing it out of laziness as much as anything else. I always worry about titles; it’s nice if a title can be somewhat descriptive, but that’s hard to do without coming across as gimmicky. I thought that song titles worked nicely, because they can set the mood without having to actually be about the story specifically. They really weren’t supposed to be necessary to the story, anyone should be able to enjoy it without having listen to, or even recognize a single song. I often listen to music when I read, so I thought it might be a nice little Easter Egg for anyone who does the same. It may be interesting to note how the music differs between the two stories. In The Lucky One there is a sort of country/folk rock sort of theme, with the main artist being The Felice Brothers. This was because I wanted to capture that rural sort of feeling of Sweet Apple Acres. In Mistaken for Strangers, although it kept to an extent the country theme, the focus was much more purely on Big Mac and Rarity’s relationship, and the music reflected that with a more alt rock theme, as exemplified by The National.
Anyway despite all my complaining, I really did genuinely enjoy writing Mistaken for Strangers, and I hope everyone enjoyed reading it. I’m incredibly grateful for all the positive feedback I received (I’m also grateful for people pointing out the flaws. It was only after someone mentioned it that I realized none of the italics had copied over when I uploaded the story). When you’re so personally involved in something it becomes very difficult to judge how anyone else will view it. It’s very gratifying to see people enjoying it.
Some people have asked if I plan on writing another installment. Frankly, I haven’t decided. I may have an idea for a sequel. Who knows? Not I. I guess we’ll all just have to wait and see.