News Archive

  • Friday
    anonpencil's "Broken Bindings" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Today's story is a real page-turner.


    Broken Bindings
    [Dark] [Horror] [Mystery] • 23,036 words

    Twilight has given you a new book to read. Well, she didn't exactly give it to you, you actually just found it in the back of the library. Behind a shelf. On the ground. It looks very old, downright ancient, and it smells like moss and rot. The binding is a little cracked, and there's no title on it. You can't help but wonder what might be inside, and the only way to find out is to keep reading.

    Just turn the page.

    You can do that much, can't you?

    Please?

    Read More

    22 comments · 1,127 views
  • 1 week
    wYvern's "Of Flies and Spiders" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Today's story will ensnare you.


    Of Flies and Spiders
    [Romance] [Dark] [Tragedy] • 8,065 words

    Glitter was banished from her hive because she's different: instead of feeding on love, she feeds on anger, fear, and sadness. Ponies are easily fooled and more easily manipulated. Staying undetected and sustaining her dietary needs, she goes through life bringing misery to those around her. All changes, though, when he turns up, tearing down walls built throughout a lifetime.

    Read More

    7 comments · 965 views
  • 4 weeks
    Cerulean Voice's "Essenza di Amore" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    [Ed. Note: The Royal Canterlot Library will be taking next week off for Bronycon!]

    You'll grow to love today's story.


    Essenza di Amore
    [Adventure] [Drama] [Alternate Universe] • 53,665 words

    Orphaned as a filly, a young pegasus named Kaviyayu is raised by an adoptive Earth pony family in a secluded, peaceful village. When a strange unicorn drops by the village, Kaviyayu and the other foals are captivated by her tales of the world, as well as her various spells and illusions for their amusement. But there's something about the way she doesn't speak of her own family ... how she never removes her traveller's cloak ... how she seems to take a very strong interest in Kaviyayu ...

    Who is this mysterious mare, what does she seek, and just what is so special about that pendant she wears?

    Read More

    8 comments · 1,356 views
  • 5 weeks
    NaiadSagaIotaOar's "Who We Are in the Dark" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Today's story, unlike its protagonist, doesn't have to cheat to win your heart.


    Who We Are in the Dark
    [Equestria Girls] [Romance] [Tragedy] • 11,505 words

    [Note: This story contains sexual themes.]

    Adagio, who everyone knows is an immortal sex goddess, is determined to give her girlfriend a perfect eighteenth birthday. If only she weren't secretly a virgin, it would be easy.

    Read More

    16 comments · 1,734 views
  • 6 weeks
    Mr V's "Sweet Little Lovely: A Gothic Romance" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Today's story ticks along to a sweetly chilling conclusion.


    Sweet Little Lovely: A Gothic Romance
    [Romance] [Dark] • 14,993 words

    [Note: This story contains scenes of blood and gore.]

    Everyone in their sleepy little town knows that Marvelous, the clockmaker, has eyes for only one mare - the beautiful Little Lovely. Despite her mysterious illness and his amusingly obsessive nature, there's no question that they make a perfect couple.

    But when the truth of Little Lovely's affliction comes to light, Marvelous begins to realize that her true beauty is ... on the inside.

    Read More

    3 comments · 1,495 views
  • 7 weeks
    Chris' "Wyrmlysan" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    As the Royal Canterlot Library says farewell to Chris, we welcome RBDash47, creator of the original Pony Fiction Vault, to our fold!

    You're destined to like tonight's story.


    Wyrmlysan
    [Tragedy] • 3,322 words

    Prophecy is a dangerous game; meanings which are obvious can become obscure in an instant, and fates are laid bare only in hindsight.

    After the fall of Discord but before the rise of Nightmare Moon, a dragon breaks the peace between its race and ponykind, and Princess Luna flies to mete out justice.

    Read More

    8 comments · 1,761 views
  • 8 weeks
    Einhander's "Royals" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Today's story is a rarity: a rich romance between an unexpected pair.


    Royals
    [Romance] [Sad] [Slice of Life] • 14,210 words

    Rarity always wanted to be Lady Rarity. Over time, it became more clear it was not meant to be. But she's fine, she's got a successful business in Ponyville, her fashion line showing in Manehattan and she has her friends, even if most of them are moving on with their lives. A prince sweeping her off her hooves was just not meant to be.

    So how in Equestria did she end up on a date with the richest pony in town?

    Confusion, feelings and wine mix for a potentially explosive, heartwarming (or rending?) evening, along with a pinch of generosity.

    Read More

    4 comments · 1,956 views
  • 9 weeks
    brokenimage321's "Celestia XVII" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    The crowning achievement of today's story is a look at some royal growing pains.


    Celestia XVII
    [Drama] [Slice of Life] [Alternate Universe] • 56,413 words

    Being seventeen is hard — especially if you happen to be a Princess.

    I'm Princess Celestia, but everyone calls me Cece. My life has been crazier than normal lately — my big brother Blueblood is a selfish jerk, my best friend Twilight just moved away to Ponyville, and, oh yeah — Nightmare Moon turned out to be my long-lost somethingth-Great Aunt, Princess Luna. No biggie.

    But, no matter how my life is going, I'm still Princess. I've gotta keep it together. Somehow. I can make it at least until the Grand Galloping Gala in a month-and-a-half ... right?

    Read More

    8 comments · 3,063 views
  • 10 weeks
    Metool Bard's "The Truth Hurts" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    With today's story, idol hooves are the devil's workshop.


    The Truth Hurts
    [Dark] [Sad] [Slice of Life] • 4,914 words

    Lightning Dust has been in a bit of a rut ever since getting kicked out of the Wonderbolt Academy. Day after day, she's been sticking to a strict exercise regimen under the guidance of Cloudsdale's premier personal trainer, Haymaker. Her hope is that she'll unlock her true potential and show Haymaker how awesome she is, thus prompting him to use his connections to get her back into the Wonderbolts. No matter how many times Haymaker tells her it's impossible, Lightning simply refuses to listen.

    Read More

    11 comments · 2,099 views
  • 11 weeks
    Phaoray's "Complex Apartments" [Royal Canterlot Library]

    Today's story drives home the difficulties of odd roommate choices.


    Complex Apartments
    [Equestria Girls] [Drama] [Romance] [Sad] • 9,829 words

    Choosing an apartment to live in is important and requires good planning. Location, needs, cost, a lot must be taken into account when looking.

    One girl looks to her animals and peace, hoping to have a quiet, fun time with her friends as she goes through high school. For her, the apartment is cheap, comfortable, allows pets, and is close to school. Perfect!

    The other is looking to take over a high school, enslave everyone inside, and bring war to another dimension all in the name of proving her mentor wrong. A small, cheap apartment near the school to plan in is all she needs.

    Fluttershy really should have met the neighbors before signing her lease...

    Read More

    4 comments · 2,177 views
Aug
3rd
2018

Author Interview » Epic Yarn's "A Slice of (Cake) Life" [Royal Canterlot Library] · 1:20pm August 3rd

Today's story bakes up some — PUMPKIN, PUT THAT DOWN.


A Slice of (Cake) Life
[Comedy] [Slice of Life] • 1,178 words

Mrs. Cake’s life isn’t always a piece of cake. The bakery needs running, Pound and Pumpkin are always up to something, and babysitters aren’t always easy to come by.

FROM THE CURATORS: While on the surface this might seem like a modest character piece — "slice of life doesn't get any slicier than this," AugieDog quipped — we found that cutting this morsel open revealed a rich, sweet experience.  And we weren't the only ones.  "Not only is it a brilliant use of dramatic monologue," Horizon said in his nomination, "but it's also an Honorable Mention in Everfree Northwest's 2018 Iron Author competition, from an author new to FIMFiction."  Along the way to a rare unanimous approval, the story also accumulated comments such as Soge's: "This was a great read, a perfect picture of the lovely chaos brought by children, but also so much more."

That was largely due to delicious writing, full of ideas without feeling dense.  "This one is weirdly elegant in its insanity," FanOfMostEverything said.  "It manages to pack a lot of frantic mayhem in just over a thousand words, but does so in a way that organically flows from one crisis to another. I'm quite impressed by how Epic Yarn managed to fit a complete, satisfying plot arc in such a small space."  That wasn't the only thing it did well.  "The comedy shines easily through," Horizon said, "not just in the brilliant running gags (such as the 'chocolate') but also in the natural child-and-parent back-and-forth illustrated by several verbal traps late in the story."  Present Perfect added, "Like the author said, she didn't have to dig deep to write about what having children is like, and it really shows."

The writing style, which only reinforced that, was singled out for repeated praise.  "I especially like how the stream-of-consciousness style doesn't try to designate what might be speech and what might be thoughts," AugieDog said.  "It adds so much to the frenzied feel of the whole situation."  Add that to a laudable look at romance, and you've got a recipe for success: "Kudos for the portrayal of the relationship between the Cakes," Soge said.  "There is this undercurrent of mature love that shines through their interactions, which feels almost Descendant-esque, and it pays off immensely on that sweet, sweet ending."

Read on for our author interview, in which Epic Yarn discusses minty-fresh children, interruption counting, and Rainbow Dash epiphanies.


Give us the standard biography.

I used to hate reading.

No, really, I did. I have a very distinct memory of it. When I was in second or third grade we read a short story about a little girl who wanted to be a writer when she grew up. I remember thinking “Gah, that sounds horrible! Who’d want to be a writer? You’d have to be around books all day and that’s just horrible. Books are the worst.”

Obviously, I’ve since changed my mind.

I discovered reading for pleasure in middle school when my parents cut the cable TV package. I was so bored that I picked up a book (Calling on Dragons by Patricia Wrede) out of desperation. That moment was pretty much like Rainbow Dash realizing reading was totally awesome! Unlike Rainbow Dash, however, I didn’t have a “cool status” to uphold, so I completely embraced my “egghead-edness.” It was shortly after that I decided I wanted to be a writer.

Now, I’m a mom who reads to her children every night and hope they grow up to be avid readers.

How did you come up with your handle/penname?

I need to thank BlazzingInferno for that one. I don’t like sitting still and I usually have to have something in my hands to keep them occupied. Knitting is my go-to of choice when I’m not reading. So naturally I brought a couple of projects with me to EFNW so I could knit while listening to the panels.

As the Iron Author contest was drawing closer, I needed a pen name. I had been throwing a few ideas around with BlazzingInferno. He suddenly got this his smile on his face and said “Epic Yarn?” I knew I had to use it! I was really, really happy that name wasn’t already taken on FIMfic.

Who's your favorite pony?

That’s like asking me to name my favorite child.

I like them all, and only BlazzingInferno knows which one annoys me the most on any given day.

What's your favorite episode?

I like them all. However, the ones that stand out the most in my mind are when the CMC get their cutie marks, meeting Applejack’s parents, and the Hearth's Warming Eve one that’s a parody of A Christmas Carol.

What do you get from the show?

For me, it started out as a cute, non-annoying kids show. Now, it is something happy and cheerful to watch — especially when life seems to be getting me down.

What do you want from life?

Good food, good writing, good traveling, and spending time with the ones that matter most.

Why do you write?

I write because I can’t imagine myself not writing. Writing is how I deal with “the heavy stuff” of life. It just makes me feel better. I’ve written a few personal essays and shared them with others going through the similar hardships. I love connecting that way with others.

I write to feel less alone and to let others know they’re not alone.

What advice do you have for the authors out there?

Don’t stop writing.

I know. “Don’t stop writing” is advice a lot of writers hear. That’s because it’s completely true. Good writing takes time, whether because it takes time to hone skills or because editing takes longer than actual writing.

I like to think of becoming a writer like someone becoming a doctor. We don’t question the fact that doctors need decades of schooling, interning, and experience to be a great doctor. Yet as writers, we expect greatness from the start. When we’re not, we become discouraged and say, “I can’t do this, I’m just not good enough.” Instead, think of writing as a degree. At minimum, it’s going to take four years to get really, really good at it. Any year after that is another year towards a “Ph.D”. You need to keep writing to get good at writing.

A more specific piece of advice (that was given to me by another writer) is “Honor your circumstances.” Don’t get down on yourself if you can’t write two hours every day. Do what you can. If your life is such that you only have half an hour a day to write or can only work on the weekends, then do that. Don’t feel like you have to fit into the mold other writers have set out. There will be some periods of your life when writing time is scarce and that’s okay! As long as you jump back into writing as soon as your circumstances change, then don’t worry about it so much.

Was it a specific incident or just childhood mayhem in general that inspired “A Slice of (Cake) Life”?

Definitely just childhood mayhem. Being a mom myself, I didn’t have to dig too deep to find Mrs. Cake’s voice or the chaos that comes from dealing with kids. The lines she said, I’ve said on more than one occasion. Thankfully, I’ve never had “please let that be chocolate” moments. However, there was an incident that involved a full, new tube of toothpaste all over EVERYTHING. The child in question smelled “minty fresh” for some time.

Why choose to tell the story strictly as a monologue?

The simple answer is: I read a similar scene in a book, thought it was cool, and decided to try it.

The deeper, more complicated answer is: One of the hardest aspects of parenting is the feeling that your voice disappears in the face of kids’ wants and needs. Kids really don’t listen well in general — whether it’s asking the same question three times in a row, or just not listening when you tell them “no.” There are also constant interruptions.

A friend of mine had a researcher come to her house to observe her work. She left the private sector when she had her first child and now runs a successful podcast. The researcher just sat and observed how she managed working at home while her oldest was a toddler and she was pregnant with her second. This researcher tallied out how many times my friend was interrupted by her family. The researcher counted 140 times that my friend had been interrupted while working. One hundred and forty times. A hundred and forty times my friend had to put her work on hold to answer a question, get a toy, put on a movie, or grab a snack. My friend thought the researcher was lying, but the researcher wasn’t.

If you notice, Mrs. Cake gets interrupted a lot. It was an easy way to build tension, but that’s not why I did it. It just felt natural to have her interrupted almost constantly. Thoughts and words get lost in the tangle of chaos when you deal with kids. I actually had to scale it back a bit because I started feeling bad for her.

Doing the scene from Mrs. Cake’s perspective meant someone had to listen to her. In order to understand what is going on, the reader has to understand what she is saying. If I had done the same scene from the twins’ perspective, Mrs. Cake’s frustration would’ve been lost. The fact that she says “good night” around five times wouldn’t have come across because the twins didn’t register that she had said it.

I guess I chose to do this type of scene as a way of giving another mother her voice back. In a way, it helped me recognize my own voice.

Do you find things like the prompt and time limit of the Everfree Northwest Iron Author contest to be helpful to your creative process?

Yes. It seems contradictory, but having rules or limits does increase creativity. A prompt means finding a solution around a problem or sparking an idea into full flame. A time limit means not getting hung up on small details so I’m forced to find an ending. My best work has happened because I was given a deadline.

Has working with another writer as a pre-reader caused you to look at your own writing differently?

Absolutely! Reading, in general, helps with writing. Being a pre-reader means taking a step above just reading and actually analyzing story mechanics. If something doesn’t work for me, I can’t just say “nope, try again.” I have to vocalize and explain my position. Being able to understand why something doesn’t work for me, in turn, make me a better storyteller because I can more easily identify what doesn’t work in my own stories.

Is there anything else you'd like to add?

This has been a really fun interview. Thank you!

You can read A Slice of (Cake) Life at FIMFiction.net. Read more interviews right here at the Royal Canterlot Library, or suggest stories for us to feature at our Fimfiction group.

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Comments ( 5 )

Slice-of-Life starring Mrs. Cake? I am immediately in.

This story was adorable. I loved it from front to back.

I definitely gotta give this a read.

A short, chocolate-stained masterpiece of a story. Slice of life at its cakiest!

An endearing story presented in such a entertaining fashion.

Dear Celestia, please let that be chocolate.

Indeed!

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