• Member Since 11th Dec, 2015
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Nines


Very divisible.

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  • 58 weeks
    OPWA: Episode Nineteen

    Overpriced Writing Advice
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Oct
8th
2019

Regarding Chapter 25 of What They Expect to Give · 7:36pm Oct 8th, 2019

I'm about to post a new chapter to my FlutterDash fic, and because I can't seem to figure out how to have more than one author's note on a chapter, I'm making a link to this blog post. If you have not read Chapter 25, please do not read this blog yet, as it has spoilers.

This post is in regards to the subject matter warning.



So as you can probably tell, this chapter was massively important. Pinkie’s personal loss is a major catalyst that moves several plot threads forward, the main plot included. I had been planning for this to happen for years. I didn’t make the decision lightly, though I suppose it’s up to you, my readers, to decide on whether I handled the issue well. I sincerely tried to treat the subject matter with respect. I am in no way trying to make some kind of sociopolitical argument, either. I simply wrote about a girl who had an unexpected loss, and had she known about the pregnancy, she would have made every effort to keep from losing it-- because it is my personal understanding of Pinkie’s character that, while she may not be the most responsible of the group, she loves children and would have been ecstatic to become a mother. Even if motherhood came unexpectedly.

I shared my intentions with my previous editor, my husband, and some writing friends. They expressed doubt or concern that maybe Pinkie’s early-term miscarriage was a step too far. "Too dark," they said. But in this setting where Sunset has to launder her money with dangerous people, Rarity gets mugged, and Rainbow is in a confusing and emotionally abusive relationship with a parent, I felt that it was perfectly in line with what was happening in the story. Yes, it’s easily the heaviest thing that happens, but given the context of my alternative universe, it was (in my opinion) not out of tone.

What They Expect to Give is a story that explores the different ways we try to show people we love them, but it’s also a story about how complex the connections are between friends and family. How problems experienced by one can cause a ripple effect through our messy social networks. I needed a significant ripple. 

I didn’t want a trite or overused catalyst to get the cast’s attention, either. “Oh no, X is in danger! Poor Y has no luck in love! Aw shucks, look at the mess Z’s hijinks caused!” I wanted something meaningful that inspired big decisions, like Rainbow's choice to finally tell Fluttershy the truth about why she'd ask for her help with the Psychology project. I chose Pinkie to deliver this catalyst, not just because it’d be especially tragic for a character so focused on having fun and making others smile to have a miscarriage, but because of the kind of unique existential dilemmas she usually faces in the show. 

Someone unexpectedly dying is hard. But a “future” someone dying? Pinkie’s attitude about life simply made her the best candidate to bear this kind of tragedy. She could endure this, and make everyone around her pause and think about their own lives while she was at it.

So I hope, dear readers, that the chapter did not upset you. That you believe me when I say I did my best and that I did not wish to offend anyone. I am open to hearing your thoughts. Do you agree with my dissenters and believe this was unnecessary? Did it trigger you at all? Or do you think it was all right? Please let me know.

I am happy to make any necessary tweaks to the story to treat the subject matter with more respect, but this event is fixed. I will understand if this means you can no longer resume reading.

Whatever you guys decide, I am so grateful you journeyed with me this far. The story will go on!

P.S. The thing Pinkie said about the European lottery was something I actually found when trying to put the odds of what happened to her in an understandable context. In this Quora question, a commenter by the name of Bill Crean responds with the info I ended up using.

https://www.quora.com/If-I-spent-1-000-000-on-the-lotto-what-are-my-chances-of-winning

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