News Archive

  • Friday
    Mitch H's "A Requiem For Lost Libraries" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Today's tale has its roots in an unusual ghost story.


    A Requiem For Lost Libraries
    [Mystery] • 2,655 words

    There is a ghost haunting the corridors of Ponyville's newest dwelling, the princess's Castle of Friendship. It is a ghost without voice, or hoof, or spectral limb to cast strange shadows upon crystalline walls.

    But it's not the ghost of a pony. It's not a person at all.

    Read More

    5 comments · 759 views
  • 1 week
    Redric Carrun's "Sleeping Habits" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    If you're procrastinating on reading today's story: You snooze, you lose.


    Sleeping Habits
    [Slice of Life] • 8,504 words

    Rainbow Dash has rather a poor reputation when it comes to her workload. Everypony always thinks of her as the pony who takes three naps during daylight hours, and four on weekends, and always seems to be looking for something to do to pass the time. All of this is true, of course. But ponies seem to think this means that she must not ever get very much work done.

    Can the weather captain for all of Ponyville really be as lazy as she seems? Is that the only explanation for Rainbow Dash's free time and constant napping?

    The weather is a full-time job. Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. And the worst weather happens at night.

    So weather ponies have strange sleeping habits.

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    4 comments · 1,416 views
  • 2 weeks
    JoeShogun's "Nine Days Down" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Today's story is a hell of a tale.


    Nine Days Down
    [Dark] [Adventure] • 136,069 words

    Sometimes it's fun to play the damsel in distress. Princess Celestia knows this better than most. Usually it works out fine. Really, she could have escaped at any time, but Twilight and her friends have been so effective in the past that this time, Celestia may have let things get out of hoof. It was all fun and games until she got unceremoniously tossed into Tartarus. Even then, it wouldn't have been so bad; she's a goddess, after all. But alas, Tartarus is not Equestria, and Celestia is not all she could be when trapped there. Even worse, it appears that she didn't get thrown into The Pit alone. 

    Read More

    11 comments · 1,942 views
  • 3 weeks
    Kkat's "Origin Story" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Explore today's story to find a hidden treasure.


    Origin Story
    [Adventure] • 24,563 words

    In the last months of the great war, Daring Do is called to once again brave the jungles of the Tenochtitlan Basin on a vital mission. While deep in enemy territory, she begins work on a final book: a prequel. A story that will never be completed.

    Here are the recovered fragments of that lost, unfinished Daring Do novel.

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    24 comments · 3,468 views
  • 4 weeks
    DwarvishPony's "Tracks in the Sand" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Today's story examines a young woman hoping that someday her prints will come.


    Tracks in the Sand
    [Equestria Girls] [Drama] [Alternate Universe] • 9,590 words

    Scavenging isn't just a hobby, it's a means of survival in the ruins of the old world. When you go scavenging, though, you'll never know what you'll find.

    Pinkie Pie is about to find more than she bargained for.

    Read More

    4 comments · 2,215 views
  • 5 weeks
    Monochromatic's "The Choices We Make" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    You won't regret choosing today's story.


    The Choices We Make
    [Equestria Girls] • 5,146 words

    Every Friday, from five in the afternoon to eleven at night, Pinkie Pie does volunteer work. She doesn't have to do it, the world won't stop if she doesn't, but she chooses to do it anyway. Even if it's doing seemingly insignificant little things.

    After all, the best ways to help aren't always with grand gestures, but with the little things in life.

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    21 comments · 3,887 views
  • 6 weeks
    Ringcaat's "The Pony Who Lived Upstairs" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Today's story brings a little magic home.


    The Pony Who Lived Upstairs
    [Drama] [Slice of Life] [Human] • 184,740 words

    [Note: This story contains sexual themes.]

    What would you do if a pony moved into the apartment upstairs? Would you make an effort to meet her? What would you talk about? And what kind of pony leaves Equestria for Earth in the first place?

    This is a series of slice-of-life episodes about a young man who meets a pony in New Jersey. Equestria has made contact with Earth; creations and creators have been sorting things out for a couple of years, and a smattering of ponies are gradually starting to move to Earth. Told though human eyes, here's the story of one of them.

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    6 comments · 3,381 views
  • 7 weeks
    Thornquill's "Carousel" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Today's story will haunt you.


    Carousel
    [Dark] [Drama] [Horror] • 69,824 words

    The Millennial Summer Sun Celebration is only a few years away, but Rarity’s fashion career seems to be ending before she can begin it. Now, she has one last chance to find a place for her talent.

    But as she works to create the boutique of her dreams, a forgotten piece of Ponyville’s past is waking up. Secret memories lie forgotten in dusty basements, unrighted wrongs scratch at locked doors, and Rarity finds herself caught up in a history that may be doomed to repeat itself.

    For although she is the first to set hoof in the Old Town Hall in thirty years, she can’t help but feel that something inside was waiting for her.

    Read More

    8 comments · 3,861 views
  • 9 weeks
    Lost + Found Features: "Let's Pretend"/"Let Me Tell You About the Hole in My Face" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    'Tis the season for holiday stress — and for the RCL to be pushing through almost 700,000 words of longfics in our reading queue. That dual crunch has slowed us down, and we're currently working with our pending featured authors on their interviews.  But don't worry — we've got you covered!

    We keep track of stories which have passed through our approval process, but whose authors were unresponsive to us despite repeated effort.  We'd like to see these great stories get their time in the spotlight too, so we're presenting a pair of RCL-approved tales for your reading pleasure.

    (Note: We will not be posting next week -- this week on our website -- due to the holiday. Happy holidays from the Royal Canterlot Library!)



    Let's Pretend
    By Pen Mightier
    [Adventure] [Comedy] • 7,484 words

    Read More

    5 comments · 3,680 views
  • 10 weeks
    RB_'s "The World Fades to White" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Today's story is quite a cool tale.


    The World Fades to White
    [Adventure] [Sad] • 3,388 words

    Princess Flurry Heart and the descendant of Prince Rutherford brave the harsh conditions of the Frozen North, in search of an artifact they hope will save their home from a similar fate.

    FROM THE CURATORS: One of the subtler skills in writing is how to wring meaning from the things you don't say — a skill on prominent display in this short and focused fic.  "I love how sparse the writing feels, hinting at larger things without ever having to define them, managing to make its diffuse world feel rich and solid," Soge said, and Present Perfect agreed: "This feels like such a tiny slice of a greater epic work. So much is packed into it, and yet so much is left unsaid."

    Read More

    11 comments · 3,208 views
Jun
16th
2017

Author Interview » HapHazred's "Part-time Goddess (and the Church of Post)" [Royal Canterlot Library] · 12:34pm Jun 16th, 2017

We pray that you enjoy today's story as much as we did.


Part-time Goddess (and the Church of Post)
[Comedy] [Slice of Life] • 6,257 words

In this day and age, who has time to be a God? Prayers come in 24/7 and fancy dress is compulsory. Rainbow Dash certainly doesn't have time. She's got bills to pay and things to do. Besides, she isn't qualified for Godhood, surely.

The ponies who say her control of the weather is divine disagree, unfortunately. They've given her a funny spear and a robe that doesn't quite fit. They've got their own temple and they take church seriously.

And it turns out she's not the only pony recently undergone apotheosis...

FROM THE CURATORS: While nothing about this religious romp was serious, it was seriously engaging.  "The more I think about it, the more it comes to me just how memorable the fic is," Soge said.  "The concept itself is very appealing, with a really Pythonesque strand of humor to it."  Present Perfect agreed, while praising the nuance with which it approached a potentially divisive topic: "This is just an enormously original piece that's happily well executed.  It pokes fun at the concept of religion, something we've really never seen in the show, without being offensive."

That approach both highlighted the story's central comedy and its excellent character work.  "It's a silliness borne of everypony treating Dash's apotheosis like a perfectly un-extraordinary event, coupled with Dash's pitch-perfect reactions to the whole shebang," Chris said.  "She's more or less the straight mare, and yet she still manages to steal most of the best lines in the fic."  But Rainbow Dash was far from the only exemplary portrayal.  "It helps that all the characterizations are so memorable and accurate," Soge said.  "Even characters with a single speaking line are portrayed true to canon, and the author has a knack for using them in comedic situations that work well with their personalities."

And all throughout, the story kept up a crisp and consistent humor.  "'Brandistock' is an amazingly funny word," Present Perfect said. "Just the fact that Dash trips over it, takes it to show Twilight, and then carries it around for the rest of the story really illustrates what makes the humor work in this piece."  That merging of the sublime and the ridiculous sent this coasting toward a feature, as AugieDog said: "I'm a big fan of stories that employ this sort of straight-forward, matter-of-fact goofiness.  There's none of this 'vast cosmic power' stuff: it's mostly just about the costume Dash has to wear now.  The way that it's portrayed just makes me grin every time I think about it."

Read on for our author interview, in which HapHazred discusses peg displacement, disqualified Scotsmen, and perfect Pope ponies.


Give us the standard biography.

I was born on a dark and stormy night. Presumably screaming was involved. Then things got weird.

I’m born Scottish, although I daresay most other Scots will have disqualified me long ago. I’ve lived in France for over a decade and now I’m finishing up a degree in engineering. My hobbies involve drinking, writing, and martial arts. Depending on how much I’ve done of number one, I may be more or less good at two and three. Basically, though, I’m interested in a lot of stuff, and usually if I see something I think is cool, I’m going to want to take it apart and dissect it.

How did you come up with your handle/penname?

Originally I went by HazardPony, which was presumably to encourage myself to take risks. Trying writing was a pretty big departure for me at the time, as I had never written anything other than a lab report prior to writing pony-fiction, so I liked the idea of taking a few risks to learn how writing worked.

Later on, though, I decided there were some serious benefits to having a username that people are prone to misspelling. I switched to HapHazred (pronounced haphazard, which in my defence is a legit way of pronouncing that word, capitals aside) as I discovered that, after thorough testing, it was a username you couldn’t find after having searched for ‘hazard’ on the fimfiction user search function. This meant I didn’t have to be as cautious with disclosing my username in public, as even if I were to do so, the chances of gents finding me were slim (unless I helped them, of course).

Then again, these days I’m pretty cavalier about blokes finding my stuff, so maybe it was a waste of time. Username stuck, though, and now I’m rather attached to it.

Who's your favorite pony?

Rainbow ‘Bestpony’ Dash. Because reasons! Lots of reasons, actually. Basically, I see an alarming amount of myself in her, so long as you switch out flying with engineering. And even then, I mean, I’m partial to a flying machine or two. Long story short she’s really cool and I would totally hang out with her. Probably. Maybe.

What's your favorite episode?

That would be Sonic Rainboom, although I confess this is for mostly nostalgic reasons. When I said that I see a lot of myself in Rainbow, it was kinda in this episode. Fear of failure and coping with pressure to perform is sort of a thing I empathise with a lot, and very much was dealing with at the time I watched the episode back in 2014. She’s been my favourite pony since, so even if ‘better’ eps come along, I still gotta stick with my old fave.

What do you get from the show?

I got some prizes from a writing contest once! Other than that I get a group of over seven thousand users to look at every evening. At least until they get rid of me.

What do you want from life?

The shorter answer would be what don’t I want from life. Although if I were to pick three, it’d be a job important enough to satisfy my ego, enough money to live comfortably, and at least one poor sod to share it with.

Why do you write?

Lots of reasons, although the one that interests me the most is exploring the similarities between engineering and designing method and writing. I’m fascinated that as I’ve learned more about engineering science, I’ve been able to piece together more and more of writing. For something as arty as it is, I’ve found structuring stories and figuring out how to make stories work with an audience is alarmingly similar to things like ergonomics (which, frankly, is not a field that otherwise interests me), information communication, and other engineering fields.

On a less academic note, it’s because it’s a fun, easy hobby to enjoy at the university cafe.

What advice do you have for the authors out there?

There are very few problems that cannot be solved with a cool head, lots of thinking, and even more effort. If you don’t believe me, just watch Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure.

For real, though, the major thing that held me back from being better at writing was panicking if a story didn’t do well, or feeling stressed about writing good stuff. First step is to chill out and examine problems closely. Once the issue is identified, brainstorm to find a solution. Once the solution is found, make sure it happens. And any plan that doesn’t account for a change of plan is a bad plan.

What inspired “Part-time Goddess (and the Church of Post)”?

Religion, mostly, although I think a lot of readers also noticed a healthy dose of Sir Terry Pratchett (whom I read a lot of when I was really little). Religion is so much fun to make fun of. So much comedy is about knocking powerful figures or institutions down a peg, and literal gods are pretty much as powerful and influential as you can get, historically speaking.

Did it surprise you how well the ponies took to this sort of British, straight-facedly absurd humor?

To be fair, Equestria is a bizarre world that lends itself well to absurd scenarios. I imagine the ponies will be quite accustomed to it by now. Or rather, they bloody well should be. Besides, I can’t help but think that Rarity sometimes has her more British-y moments, and Fancy Pants’ voice actor was (I believe? Don’t quote me on this) asked to emulate John Cleese, of all people.

Do you foresee apotheosis for any of our other characters?

Well, you could argue Twilight is already there (I, however, would not, for reasons). That said, I have been playing around with some ideas.

I considered making Twilight a Goddess of Scientific Reason, which would be something of a contradiction. I foresaw a couple of jokes in that area.

Whilst not an apotheosis, I did also consider making Applejack a Pope of the Church of Dash. She’d take care of the religious ceremonies when Dash was off on tour with the ‘Bolts (which would cause Applejack no end of grief, naturally). And she even already has a silly hat! She’s perfect Pope material.

Do you prefer planning your stories out ahead of time or letting them grow while typing them up?

I always do some planning (unless I’m specifically challenging myself to work without a plan). The beginning, end, and theme (or conflict, or whatever idea I want to talk about) are all in my head when I begin. Depending on what I’m doing, I’ll then plan my story in more or less detail. Part-Time Goddess was relatively un-planned, outside of the basics, partly due to how short it was and partly due to the fact that a lot of it was dialogue, which I very much prefer to write unscripted.

That said, the less planning I do, usually the more edits I have to perform. Then again, I find I abandon more planned projects than I do unplanned ones (although that might also be a length thing).

Is there anything else you'd like to add?

If I said yes and nothing else, would that be immensely irritating?

You can read Part-time Goddess (and the Church of Post) at FIMFiction.net. Read more interviews right here at the Royal Canterlot Library, or suggest stories for us to feature at our Fimfiction group.

Comments ( 10 )

Huh. And here I thought Hap's user name was a reference to the author of the Necronomicon.

In any case, this one definitely earned its spot. Amazingly entertaining.

4572720 No, nothing as exciting, I'm afraid. No references or wacky shenanigans. Just deliberate alternate spellings.

Though I haven't watched it, the new TV show American Gods seems to follow some similar themes to your story -- i.e., gods can be made out of anything and anyone, if enough people believe in them.

I read your story a while ago, and I loved it. Dash's reactions to the increasingly ridiculous situation she found herself in were great, as we don't see her play the straight mare too often.

Warning: Living in France does threaten your Scottish cred, but since you are studying engineering, that makes up for it. :pinkiehappy:

Hey, nice to see a spotlight on my pal Hap! Tragically, though, I haven't read the story in question. I suppose I'll have to look at it now, though! :eeyup:

4572914 Thanks for the vote of confidence, but I don't even have a scottish accent anymore.

Well.

I'm told it comes back when I'm really drunk but for some reason I can't remember those instances.

4572888 I've never read American Gods, but they sound like Chill Dudes.

4572955 4572888
Well, the novel was written by Neil Gaiman. The novel was fantastic.

… But I repeat myself. :duck:

Give us the standard biography.

I was born on a dark and stormy night. Presumably screaming was involved. Then things got weird.

Of course you'd say that.

Congratulations, Hap :D Great, as always :)))

I’m born Scottish, although I daresay most other Scots will have disqualified me long ago. I’ve lived in France for over a decade

That's No True Scotsman!

and now I’m finishing up a degree in engineering.

Oh. Carry on, then.

For something as arty as it is, I’ve found structuring stories and figuring out how to make stories work with an audience is alarmingly similar to things like ergonomics (which, frankly, is not a field that otherwise interests me), information communication, and other engineering fields.

Ergonomics? Care to elaborate?

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