• Member Since 11th Jul, 2013
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Monochromatic


Perfect has seven letters and so does meeeeee. Ko-fi|Patreon

More Blog Posts192

  • 1 week
    The Enchanted Library: Remastered and Re-Uploaded

    Hello, folks!

    Do you like RariTwi? Do you like fairytales? Do you like ghosts? Do you like...

    Ghost RariTwi?

    Well, do I have news for you! We have been hard at work for these past months working on the NEW and IMPROVED version of the Fimfiction Classic RariTwi Ghostbusters also known as The Enchanted Library.

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    57 comments · 1,240 views
  • 2 weeks
    RariTwi Post

    hello!

    I'm going to share random RariTwi stuff and headcanons, which will mostly be my twitter shenanigans because I think that would be nice and fun

    that's the point of the blog, so here we go

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    26 comments · 494 views
  • 2 weeks
    Shirtposting

    Heyo!

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    6 comments · 459 views
  • 3 weeks
    I hope y'all like Outer Wilds

    because my yearly non-RariTwi fic sacrifice to the friendshipping gods is a crossover with it because I love,,, Outer Wilds,,, so much,,,,

    *cries in Solanum*

    21 comments · 290 views
  • 3 weeks
    Enchanted Library is officially temporarily down

    As I said earlier this month, my editor has finished going through TEL which means that I've now unpublished it and will spend the next four days editing my old writing. It should be back up soon and it will be nice and new and amazing

    For those who want to keep reading or need it for any reason, BEHOLD THE FIMFETCH LINK

    Read More

    12 comments · 420 views
Jun
29th
2020

TEK Story Blog: Ch.22 Aftermath and On Dealing With What Now · 9:20pm June 29th

Man, lotsa blogposts this week, huh? 

Anyway! I need to... express some thoughts, I guess. For my sake, mostly. I’ve been blocked on writing, and I think that getting this out of the way will help. What follows will mostly be stream of consciousness, and I’m just going to ramble to myself about why I made some story choices on TEK and just... I don’t know. 

I need to talk it out, and the void is my rubber ducky. (Also, obviously, spoiler warning for TEK)


I feel like I’ve written this blogpost fifty times already. In my mind, in actual drafts, in conversations I’ve had. 

It feels silly--or am I shaming myself?--putting so much effort into a story about cartoon horses, but here I am. 

Chapter 22 came out about a month ago. The culmination of literal years of effort and buildup, the chapter on which I was banking everything on because that chapter would make or break me. It would tell me if my choices had been right or wrong. 

It would tell me if it had mattered. 

Rarity!

I want to talk about Rarity.

Mostly because, for the majority of writing TEK, I felt (told myself??? projected??) that I was writing her as the bad character. Not the villain, but certainly not the… I don’t know. Rarity never felt like a villain to me, she never felt like she wasn’t doing anything but trying her best, and yet I constantly feared that’s what she was viewed as. 

In fact, and this is absolutely allowed and their valid opinion, I know for a fact that it turned some readers off. 

I keep coming back to that. Like a plague. Logically, I know not everyone can like what I write, but emotionally, I’m having a hard time accepting that a story that made people uncomfortable is a good story. 

Or. Well. That’s not right. 

Stories that are uncomfortable can be good, but I keep wondering if I made the right choice making this one uncomfortable (again, just venting here; it no longer matters if it was or not). 

I was afraid of doing exactly what people thought I was writing: a drama-fest with drama for the sake of drama, with characters not communicating. 

I tried so hard to avoid that. Like, literally. It plagued me. I spent literal months, years, questioning every choice, making sure as best as I could that any communication issue between characters was coming from a real, understandable place, not from a “HAHA DRAMA”. Every single thing I had any of them do, especially Rarity, I would sit there and dissect the 50 different implications and meanings. 

I’m not sure what I’m doing here? I feel like I’m justifying myself. But to who? To you? To myself? Possibly both, but this is what TEK felt to me over and over and over again. An exercise in questioning my choices, in hoping to God that I’d be able to pull it off, in justifying to both you and myself that I wasn’t a hack of an author (I know I’m not, logically; emotionally, that’s another thing). 

I think there’s a trope around me, and I suppose other authors, but speaking of me, specifically, I know my reputation. I break hearts, and write sad stuff, and feed on the tears of my reader. But that’s not why I do it. I swear to god. I’ve mostly moved on from angst for the sake of angst.

Except for that one soul-ponies AU, but shhhhhh. 

Anyway, I feel like sadness is inevitable in life. Arguments, and conflict, and pain, but I believe more than anything in growth. Not in every case, no, but I believe that confrontation makes you stronger. It’s why I had Fluttershy say what she said to Twilight the night after their massive fight. 

“It’s a step forward.”

I feel it’s something I haven’t seen a lot in fiction. Or in real life. The fact that relationships--all relationships--can be difficult and complicated and people make wrong choices but it’s still worth addressing. Even if it’s uncomfortable. 

It’s also why I wanted this to be Twilight’s perspective, because often times, the one who is hurting and doing the hurting doesn’t really see it as that. It’s why Rarity absolutely lost her sh*t at Luna when Luna insulted Pinkie. 

Holding people accountable is important. People holding themselves accountable is important. And making mistakes doesn’t mean you’re done. If you want to be better, you can. 

And meanwhile, I also had to write an adventure story. 

I guess I wanted a deep characterization story while also having an adventure story. I wanted to have my cake and eat it, too, 

And hell yeah, I did!

Which was also really hard. It was also really hard because I was juggling like six different plotlines. Luna, Twilight and Rarity were the main ones. There’s one conversation, I think in the middle of TEK, where Rarity and Twilight are talking about going to the library and that thing was LAYERED.

It wasn’t just Twilight talking to Rarity. It was:  what Twilight was explicitly telling Rarity, what Rarity was explicitly replying, what Twilight thought Rarity was saying, what Rarity thought Twilight was saying, and then what Twilight was actually saying and what Rarity was actually saying. 

Lots of spinning plates that no one was seeing but me, I guess. 

I’ve been thinking a lot about the length of the story, and in all honesty, I don’t regret the length. I mean, I only regret it in the sense that it’s not done yet, but I still feel every scene I wrote mattered to the plot--be it RariTwi plot, or Luna plot. There’s some things I could have done differently, yes, but all in all, I knew why I wrote every scene and that’s what matters to me.

Honestly, the entire story thus far felt like just this massive buildup to chapter 21-22. 

That scene in chapter 9 where Pinkie makes a Luna construct was buildup for the Luna construct of NMM; Cadance telling Twilight about taking responsibility was buildup to Twilight helping Luna and herself; the dream realm chapters were buildup for Twilight bringing in the adults and having them help; it feels like everything was constantly building up on itself. 

It was interesting. As readers expressed fear of the RariTwi not working, of them breaking up, of never recovering; the entire time I feel like I was sitting over here going “holy SHIT, they are going to be a rock solid healthy couple after this”. 

It’s also interesting, but glancing at TEK, I realize that Rares and Twi spent more time being cute and adorable than having difficulties or disagreements. I guess that speaks to how we focus on the negative parts if I had to look at my own story to be reminded that, actually, most of the story was them being cute and supporting, even as they struggled. 

That was ultimately the approach I took. One way or another, both--especially Twilight--would learn that it isn’t “you vs me”, it’s “us vs the problem”. 

I think, also, this was an exercise in trusting myself. Through no fault of anyone but mine, I spent most of my time writing TEK being like “please, everyone, trust me, I promise it’ll be worth it, please trust me” when really I suppose I didn’t trust myself. 

And I think that now, at the long end of this road (which hasn’t ended *sob*), I think I trust myself. Or, I will until tomorrow when I’m all “I MADE RARITY LOOK LIKE A VILLAIN AND NOW I BET NO ONE SHIPS RARITWI ANYMORE WEEEEEEEH”, but baby steps! Baby steps!

What comes now? I don’t know.

Ok, well, I do know. I have a vague idea of what’s gonna happen next. There’s gonna be a SUPER FLUFFY RARITWI Act II epilogue and then we’ll head into Act III in which we’ll have the “Rarity and Twilight go on adventures while being stupidly in love” story we’ve earned. 

((INB4 anyone comes in and says it, yes, I know we still need to reach the prologue, and yes, I know that implies bad stuff, but mark my words, the reason that happens is not because Rarity and Twilight are in a bad place or don’t love each other or kjfdsjkdsjkdskjdskjds I promise you this ok))

ANYWAY THE POINT IS THERE ARE SOME ASPECTS I COULD HAVE WRITTEN BETTER, BUT I’VE BEEN HAVING TEK MUSINGS AND I JUST WANTED TO TALK ABOUT IT. 

So yes. 

I don’t know what else to say, I guess, but basically thank you for reading, and thank you for reading my ramble if you did so. 

Mono

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Comments ( 21 )

I can understand how stressful that must be. Writing a character in a way some would find uncomfortable, perhaps due to how close to home it can feel, while fully knowing things will get better and being worried people won't understand that or stick around long enough to see it. As someone who stuck to it, and enjoyed the uncomfortable parts because they felt real and felt like they'd take their relationship to a better place, I think it was all worth it.

You did a great job with TEK, Mono, and I trust in the direction you're taking it. Looking forward to all that fluff!

Hey if rambling in a blogpost on a website for fanfics about pastel colored magical ponies (and others) makes you feel better (even if it's just for today) then I say:

RAMBLE ON :pinkiecrazy:

Hey sometimes it help to just rant and let things out but I do also agree to trust yourself here.

Mwap. Good horse? Good horse. :heart:

While I realize that my opinion comes from a very inexperienced writer, I have to tell you that you have done (and will do) a fantastic job writing this story. It is, to me, what life really is: love, pain, insecurity, friendship, fear, trust and caring.

Spoilers below for anyone reading this.




Rarity never rely like a villain to me, ever. She was a pony that was hurt. Yes, partly by Twilight but also her own actions. She kept it inside until she just couldn't any longer. She is just like the rest of us. We're some fearful that she and Twilight's relationship would crumble because of her anger and hurt? I'm sure some did. I was a little worried myself, as I've endured such trouble in my own life. I know it doesn't always work out. But you subtly made some references and knowing Rarity's character, I knew she wouldn't give up. She just had to find a way to tell Twilight and stop being afraid. Rarity finding her courage gave Twilight the courage to tell Rarity how she felt. They both supported each other, even when they were angry. Because love, real, deep love and respect, can live through hurt and know that love still remains. Life happens and the love and comfort are still there.

And you Mono, you told this story perfectly and in the most important way possible, truthfully.

That is why we all love it and you so much.

"I can’t promise you I won’t get hurt. I can’t promise you something won’t set me off, or I won’t lose myself again, or Discord won’t hurt me, or… Or that I won’t blame myself anymore because I’ve been doing it for centuries! That’s a lot of years of bad habits to break! But…

“But I’m going to get better. Even if it’s hard. I won’t be great at it all the time, and even though I’m statistically likely to have tons of regressions, I’m still going to keep getting better no matter how long it takes me"

We'll be here for you, through the playful times and the chaos magic times.

We trust you Mono (at least I do). Without the bad feelings we wouln't be able to appreciate the good ones. The story is a rollercoaster of emotions and rollercoasters without downslopes are just boring :P

So trust in yourself and if you want to rant than I'm happily gonna read those rants :D

I wanted to write a long heartfelt comment, but I think I’ll just leave at this: this journal entry, like most of your posts about writing, made me smile. :twilightsmile: :raritywink:

i found the finale of act 2 to be everything we were hoping for and waiting for. i knew when reading TEL that we could trust you as a writer and i will always do so with TEK. theres always times we look back at what we do and think it could be different. i suppose thats the benefit of hindsight but in the end the only thing we can really do is trust in ourselves and carry on. i certainly hope we carry on.

You are RariTwi Queen for REASONS, Mono 👑

You've earned our trust, and our hearts, and we know you wouldn't do Rarity dirty!

As CiG famously says, Stories about ponies are studies about people - your RariTwi dynamic is realistic, and layered, and nuanced, and inspiring, and painful, and beautiful, and

Ecom·pli·cat·ed
If Twilight knows anything, which she does, it's that the perfect date requires the perfect list. Rarity, however, seems to have a different idea.
Monochromatic · 3.9k words  ·  394  9 · 3.3k views

Just like in real life!

Thank you for enriching our lives with your labours of love 💜❤️💜

I don't know how helpful this kind of feedback is, but I truly enjoyed all of TEK so far. Certainly some of the underlying turmoil was lost on me, but it was obvious that there were some serious unspoken problems brewing and that Rarity was silently struggling with something. It never detracted from the more prominent plot, and I think you did a great job building that emotional arc and an even better job cutting the tension and kickstarting some catharsis in the most recent chapter.

Thinking back on TEL and the way it ended, I'm really glad you confronted the issue. I never really vocalized it at the time—cause I'm not vocal in general—but I had some doubts about the timeskip at the end of TEL. Bypassing that much time where not much happens other than characters being miserable so we can enjoy them being happy instead seemed a little cheap, but this conflict addressed that for me really well.

So yeah, again, not sure if that's a helpful sentiment, but I for one continue to love TEK and I hope you do as well, self-criticism and all.

Rarity has never read as a villain to me. Not even an antagonist. She has only ever read as a frightened, stupidly in love, and flawed individual. Why anyone thinks she reads as a villain, I don't know. I suppose because she isn't perfect?

One of the things I like the most about TEL and TEK, is both that they are super fluffy and absolutely stupidly in love with each other. And yet, despite that almost fairytale-like love, they still fight, still have disagreements, and still run into problems. They're not perfect, and they get into huge troubles sometimes, but watching them struggle to find that common ground again is one of the greatest joys of this story.

Seeing Rarity break down and admit her every fear to Twilight was heartbreaking, but when she moved past that fear (if only for a few moments) to launch a verbal nuke at Nightmare Moon (or do I have the sequence of events turned around?). Nevertheless, my point is that all of those wonderful, fluffy and cute "Highs", are only as delightful as they are, because of the lows that come before.

But those lows are, I think, not just drama or angst for the sake of it. Everything feels thoroughly rooted in the story, the characters' personalities, and the events the preceded it. I can believe that they would react the ways they do, and I think that is a testament to your skill and dedication to these characters.

So, if you'll take my words for it: You have no reason to doubt or second-guess yourself, Mono.
Rarity might screw up, but so does Twilight (I mean, what kind of pony introduces themselves by throwing someone else into a bookcase?! Who DOES that?!). And in spite of all of their screw-ups, they make it through, and get better.

You don't write villains. You write stupid ponies in love, I think :twilightsmile:

JMP
JMP #13 · June 30th · · ·

I never saw Rarity as a villain, and I don't really understand that mentality. Rarity was hurt very deeply by Twilight and for the longest time didn't know how to balance that with the fact that she still was hopelessly in love with her. They had a fight, and Rarity was hiding things for most of the story, but she was never directly opposed to Twilight or actively trying to cause conflict with her. But that's just me. TEK has been a hell of a ride so far and I'm always excited when there's a new chapter or a new blog post talking about work being done on it.

You do have your chance to reflect and tweak TEL before it goes into print. Just don't worry about how that may effect TEK. When time rolls around to put TEK into print, you can do a tweak with that story as you reflect on the epic saga you have produced!

Any pony can show signs of villainy, we often call that, being overcome by reality. It is the damage control after the fact that restores harmony.

First of all, I understand self-doubt and the havoc it can wreak on one's mind, so I say this with as much kindness and understanding as I am capable of.

Stop it, silly goose!

Okay, so your medium happens to be technicolor ponies--so what? The portrayal of relationships you have going in both of these stories is amazing, and whatever medium you use, it's important and necessary. Relationships in media are so often portrayed as either Hallmark-fluffy-perfect with whatever complexities easily solved in an hour-and-a-half or full of angst and abuse the author is trying to pass off as romance. You're portraying something not often observed in media, I think, and that is all the high, raw emotion that comes with being in a relationship that has... well, a whole cartload of "baggage" for lack of words. Furthermore, you're showing two characters learning how to deal with all of it. That's way more uncommon than it should be. The plot and structure in your stories is beyond solid. You keep doing what you're doing, and you've got a strong series--period.

And your portrayal of Rarity is hardly that of a villain. She comes across as someone who incredibly conflicted and working through her own emotions, even if she doesn't entirely know how. Goodness, I feel like Rarity is afraid of how Twilight might perceive her as "bad" or uncaring or whatever, but all I see is emotional conflict and that Rarity's isn't sure what to do. So she withdraws, or isn't as upfront with Twilight and her friends as she might be. It's a process.

Look at it like this: if TEL was the honeymoon phase, TEK is where the real foundations of a relationship is being built. And it's almost more heartwarming than just straight fluff (not that I don't enjoy me some fluff--I do. Oh, good heavens, I do.)

You're doing good, Mono. No shame in having doubts or wanting to discuss your feelings with someone or even just needing a dash of reassurance. You're doing well with your writing, and, as always, I can't wait to see what else you come up with.

I can't believe some people think you wrote Rarity as the villain. To be honest this is the first time I've seen that opinion expressed at all. I think Rarity is hurt emotionally, and suppressing all her melodrama made people reading from Twi's PoV feel the Twi and all of it (which indicates great writing).

I always trusted your writing and where you take your readers, but I'm happy to hear you're trusting yourself. I hope that all of us who trust you will continue to help you take those baby steps. You've done and are doing an amazing job. No offence, but you don't have a reason to doubt yourself. Keep pressing forward :twilightsmile:

Hi mono
I just wanted to say I never felt that rarity came off as the villain in TEK. She honestly felt to me as someone just trying to get a handle on her life but all I can say is I have enjoyed every chapter you have posted and I trust in the direction you are going with the plot.

ok so TEK is probably one of the best pieces of writing I have ever read

Thank you for writing it)

My advice, don't set out to write a character as either good or bad, not unless you are doing melodrama where the bad character has a long thin handlebar mustachio and has a penchant for tying up heroins on railroad tracks and/or logs being fed into a saw. Life is full of good people with good intentions making all the wrong choices. Yes, there are bad people, but every last one believes themselves to be in the right. Write a character in shades of gray. Just not fifty, that book sucked and the movie even harder. The best characters will be a big complicated mess of good and bad all shoved into a character in over their heads and hasn't a clue just how deep they have gotten themselves.

And despite all your doubts, you are a good writer. To tell the truth I'd rather ship Twilight with Luna. Now wouldn't that be a twist if after everything Rarity has done, after all her sacrifices, Twilight is in Love with Luna?

I'm still here after all this time because you are a good writer. If you weren't, I'd have cut and run a long time ago.

The fact that your stories makes us feel sad is a good thing. Idk how to explain it, but like your angst feels good. Like, yeah I'm sad, my heart aches and I'm crying, but like my soul is happy

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