When I started seriously writing almost 11 years ago it was within a universe that is known as FANDOM! *cue ominous music*
Now some writers out there might chuckle at the idea of Fandom if they are aware of it, but never had the pleasure of wading through its murky waters. Those who have made the transition from Fandom to Professional writing will understand the depth to which fellow writers will go to get attention including the flaming pitchforks often referred to as sporks. It is these people who let the green-eyed monster take over. Whether you look at it as envy, jealousy or any of a million other emotions the green-eyed monster begins stalking you from the moment you dip your toe in the waters of writing.
All those years ago I dipped my toe in those murky waters and went on a journey that made me a better writer despite the sharp tines of those green-eyed beasts. Early on I learned that some people just can’t seem to control themselves no matter how old they are. Maturity has nothing to do with age, it has to do with making mistakes, living your life as best you can, and learning from the mistakes that you make. It also has a great deal to do with karma; whatever you offer the universe will be returned to you three fold and sometimes more.
When I first wrote m/m erotica, known as slash in the World of Fandom, I was scared senseless. That’s right…I said it. I was fucking terrified because although I’d read a ton of it I still wondered if I could write it. So, taking a deep breath I decided to write what Fandom writers now refer to as crack. The idea is that the characters act completely out of character and humor rules. Said story was written and I sent it out into the Ethernet to be consumed by the monsters and if I were lucky one or two folks out there would get it.
I had a good reception considering I was an unknown writer at the time with one exception. One of those hideous lil’ green-eyed creatures reared its head and hissed at me. It told me that I needed a BETA (aka Fandom editor). I told the monster whilst holding it off with my magical sword, that I’d decided not to use a BETA because I wished to learn on my own. The beast was not happy with that response. It hissed at me numerous times explaining that my characters were acting out of character. I explained it was supposed to be funny (after all Mulder wasn’t a weepy twink and Skinner wasn’t about to do him on a kitchen counter with olive oil as lube). The concept of humor was apparently not within the monster’s comprehension.
After three days the monster took it upon itself to gift me with a copy of my story that had been cut and pasted into a file. With much trepidation I open said file and to my complete horror discovered said story covered in red. The monster had against my wishes mutilated my story and sent it back to me–How bloody rude! I e-mailed the creature back and very kindly told it to “FUCK OFF”. I didn’t use those words, but I got my point across. No more would the beast hiss at me and tell me how I should write without permission. As a matter fact it lurked back to its den of inequities and never shadowed my doorstep again.
That wasn’t the end though. Many monsters reared their heads at me. Each time I slayed the beasts with sweetness and my armor grew stronger (my hit points popping off the scale). In my time lost in the murky Waters of Fandom, I learned a great deal as a writer such as never use the word scissoring whilst describing preparation for anal sex (twitches) or that some people will use anything for lube (Dude, Vick’s Vapor Rub? Seriously, are you insane?). The biggest thing I learned though is that the green-eyed monsters are full of hot air and a quick poke of a shiny pin will send them flying away as if they were a balloon released before being tied.
Yeah, monsters can be quite easy to deal with. They are nothing but the bullies of the writing world. Seeking to take someone else down because of their own lack of self-esteem.
Of course, when I graduated from the Swamps of Fandom I was hopeful I’d left the monsters behind. How very mistaken I was about that. There are green-eyed monsters every where you go in life and professional writing is no different. All I can hope to do is just polish up my Dino-armor, sharpen my flaming sword, and focus on my writing. If the monsters dare come near my lair I shall be prepared with the lessons I learned in the Swamps of Fandom.
Hold fast. Be strong. Do the best you can.
And kill the green-eyed beasts with kindness. *hee*