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12 March 2006 @ 11:47 am
Topic 01: Fanfiction  
Our first mod's topic for discussion at caldron_pool is fanfiction. This is a staple of any fandom, including Narnia, and so it is a fitting topic with which to open discussion. Fanfiction is all about how the writer interprets canon and develops it in new ways — what stories can we tell about the world that Lewis has given us?

Questions:

How do the book-verse and the movie-verse interact in Narnia fanfiction? Do you prefer to work from one or the other when writing, or do you blend them at will? How has the movie influenced the way we write?

Should fanfiction stay true to Lewis's ideals as well as his stories? How should fanfiction writers deal with the allegorical nature of many of Lewis's plotlines?

What do you think of AU (alternate universe) fics?

What's your attitude on RPF (real person fiction)? Can it be considered Narnia fanfiction? Should it be written at all?

What is the general quality of Narnia fanfiction like? Does it tend to be better than in other fandoms? Worse? No discernible difference?

What do you wish got written more often? A certain pairing, a certain character, a certain era, a certain genre?

What is the worst thing about Narnia fanfiction as it is written now? What is the best thing?


These questions are merely to jump-start discussion. You may answer them if you wish, or you may talk about whatever you want pertaining to the topic.

Please remember, be respectful — no bashing.
 
 
 
Jempuddleduck3 on March 13th, 2006 05:57 am (UTC)
What is the general quality of Narnia fanfiction like? Does it tend to be better than in other fandoms? Worse? No discernible difference?

I think it's still getting started so it's hard to say. I mean, obviously Narnia has been around for a long time but the Fandom has been tiny up until the film release. We haven't got any major archives yet, chaptered fics are still thin on the ground, there aren't really any fic-related BNF's, ships are still being settled, there isn't much meta yet, cliches have yet to appear (well, there are a few but not many) etc.

So, at the moment I would say that it isn't terrible but neither is it up to the quality of something that a major and much more established fandom- for example Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings- might have to offer.

Having said that we're also quite lucky because most of what is being written now is new and original. HP has been so well explored that it's often hard to find a truly original fic. With the Narnia fandom that's not so. What I'm saying is that the ideas behind Narnia fanfiction are good but the writers are still getting comfortable with characters, writing in the canon etc.

What's your attitude on RPF (real person fiction)? Can it be considered Narnia fanfiction? Should it be written at all?

Do you mean "real person fiction" as in, for example, William Moseley/Anna Popplewell? If so then; I don't like it and no. RPF has absolutely nothing to do with Narnia and as such should not be classified as Narnia fic. What on earth does William Moseley/ Robert Pattinson slash have to do with C.S. Lewis' world? Nothing. Nothing more than a tenuous connection wherein one of the "characters" acted as Peter in the film of Narnia. It's like saying Katherine Hepburn/Spencer Tracy RPF can be classified as L.M. Alcott fic just because at one point in her career Hepburn portrayed Jo in a film version of Little Women. It's nonesense.

I mean, fair enough, go ahead and ship/fic to your hearts content but don't saturate the Narnian Fan Fiction Archives with what clearly isn't Narnia fic. Narnia fic should be about the characters and world of Narnia, not about actors and their fictional love lives.

What do you wish got written more often? A certain pairing, a certain character, a certain era, a certain genre?

I wish there were more Missing Moment fics. I did a read through where I highlighted all the fantastic throw away lines and scenes that aren't fully explored that could be used as the foundations for some terrific fic. That's what's so fantastic about C.S. Lewis' writing- so much of it he leaves up to our imagination! Unfortunately Narnia fic writers, at the moment, don't seem very interested in Missing Moment fic.

What is the worst thing about Narnia fanfiction as it is written now? What is the best thing?

The Pevensie-cest. It perverts the already beautiful and complex relationships between the children, twisting them beyond recognition, because people can't seem to appreciate a relationship unless there is romance included. C.S. Lewis would be rolling over in his grave at the very thought of it.

The best thing? I love the Narnia drabbles. There are a lot of very talented drabble-writers in the Narnia fic community and some of the stuff out there is fantastic. The exploration of Susan and how she felt after being left behind is also very interesting.

This looks like it'll be an interesting community!
Aeli: Lucy and Susan sistershinter on March 14th, 2006 11:41 am (UTC)
Thanks for your response!

On the subject of RPF:

I don't consider it Narnia fanfiction, but I think the Hepburn analogy is stretched a little too far. After all, for most of the actors, this is their one and only movie thus far, and certainly their only major movie with a lot of attention, which is a stronger connection point than any single movie in a long career. That said, I completely see what you mean about most of it — it's never really been my thing, although I've read one or two stories that really captured me.

On Missing Moments:

Do you know how many authors would absolutely love you if you made that read-through with all the highlights into a list and posted it online? I for one would come flocking to them. Some of my fic could be said to address Missing Moments; I've written one Edmund/Caspian that covers the entire second half of PC, and that had a lot of missing moments in it in addition to actual scenes from the book. (I'm currently working on a sequel that takes place during VDT.)
Jempuddleduck3 on March 16th, 2006 12:15 pm (UTC)
I guess we'll have to agree to disagree in terms of the Hepburn analogy as I think it's perfectly valid (:D).

As for the list of Missing Moments, I could definately post it online. I'll write it up asap. Shall I post it on this comm or can you direct me towards a more suitable place?
Aeli: Pevensies eating togetherhinter on March 18th, 2006 12:48 pm (UTC)
*debates* I'm very tempted to say post it on this community, because I would like to get some stuff in here, but I don't think it quite fits what I'm supposed to be looking for. I would recommend posting it someplace like narnia_fans, narnians, or dawn_treader — the more comprehensive Narnia communities. It'll be sure to be reported to everyone who reads the narnian_herald in any case.
Capegiocapegio on March 21st, 2006 06:04 am (UTC)
"The Pevensie-cest. It perverts the already beautiful and complex relationships between the children, twisting them beyond recognition, because people can't seem to appreciate a relationship unless there is romance included."

Oh now, I think that's a little harsh. I can appreciate perfectly well the incest-free relationships between the Pevensies, but that doesn't stop me from enjoying a well-written Pevensiecest fic as well. I feel that Pevensiecest isn't good or bad, it's just different; if it squicks you, I'm sorry. But I really feel that it can add another dimension to the story when carried out well.
Jempuddleduck3 on March 21st, 2006 06:17 am (UTC)
See I don't think it's harsh at all. I find incest abhorrent, particularly in this fandom. It's a world wide cultural taboo for a reason and it is bad. That's the problem. Narniacest or Pevensiecest is written in a way that ignores the implications of incest. It's treated far to lightly. I mean, if a fic writer was exploring the effect of incest on their (the Pevensies) relationships in a thoughtful and realistic manner then I would have less of a problem with it. The fact that they don't (for the most part anyway, I'm sure there are a select few authors out there who do do this) tells me that they simply want a romantic relationship and without (seemingly) any other potential partners they pair the children together. I find it lazy and, as I said, it perverts the relationships between the children, ignoring what is already there.

I feel that Pevensiecest isn't good or bad, it's just different; if it squicks you, I'm sorry.

You don't need to apologise, it's just an opinion (and it wasn't directed at you personally anyway).
Capegiocapegio on March 21st, 2006 06:49 am (UTC)
It's a world wide cultural taboo for a reason and it is bad.

Hmm. I guess...well, here's my schpiel. I think incest in real life doesn't work for two reasons. One is the genetics problem, which of course only applies to het couples. The other is that in my opinion, it is impossible to hold two relationships in equal importance - much for the same reason you should avoid dating close friends, you shouldn't date family members either. The relationship between siblings is too important to be overridden by something else, and I think it's not possible to hold siblings love and romantic love for the same person. A person acts differently with a sibling as with a lover and for that reason, a sibling can't be a lover.

However! In the wonderful world of literature, we're allowed to pull whatever we want and it will still work out. I wouldn't want to date my siblings in real life - squick! I wouldn't risk losing the love of a sibling by engaging in romantic relations with them. But in story, I feel that it's okay to pair up siblings because you dictate how the story is going to end and we can get happy endings if we want them. Fiction isn't confined to the rules real life is, and as such I feel that it's not necessary to be entirely realistic about it.

Bear in mind that this only works for people who are capable of keeping fiction and real life seperate in their minds. I'd hate to think that I'd ruined anyone's family life 'cause I made them think incest is tractable eye are ell.

Jempuddleduck3 on March 21st, 2006 07:27 am (UTC)
Bear in mind that this only works for people who are capable of keeping fiction and real life seperate in their minds. I'd hate to think that I'd ruined anyone's family life 'cause I made them think incest is tractable eye are ell.

In one way I agree with you- fiction and real life are separate in the sense that fictional characters are not real and the worlds they inhabit are often not real however, many experiences that said characters may have are based on real life experiences, situations, issues etc. therefore although they should be held separately the two are not mutually exclusive. I’m struggling to express what I’m trying to say, sorry. Basically I’m saying that I personally think that serious issues in our real life should be treated as such in our fiction- rape should not be the subject of fluff, neither should abuse, murder, incest etc.

In the wonderful world of literature, we're allowed to pull whatever we want and it will still work out

I agree that often a talented writer can make most anything work. Not all fic writers and certainly not all those who are writing these pairings are dealing with the issue in a manner that could be considered “making it work” though.
Also, another reason for why I dislike Pevensiecest partially ties in with what you’ve said here. Yes, we’re working with fiction BUT it isn’t ours. Someone else wrote it. That someone would not have appreciated seeing these characters paired up romantically. I think, because we’re using his world and his characters without his permission, we should at least strive to be respectful of his original work and intent.



(Woe, I've enjoyed semi-debating with you but I have to go! If you want to continue discussion I'd be happy too, just thought I'd let you know that I won't be able to reply for a while...).
Capegiocapegio on March 21st, 2006 07:51 am (UTC)
No problem, I should really be doing my history homework anyhow.

Hmm. I guess I feel that rape, abuse and incest aren't the same thing, though I will agree that distasteful rape fics make me very angry. I'll try to make a distinction here - rape, abuse, murder, etc. are all instrinsically destructive acts. They all are the direct cause of emotional torment, and this is why they are considered immoral. In contrast, my perception of incest is that it is simply another kind of love with the potentially nasty side effects of losing the love of one of the character's dear ones. To me, incest is not wrong because of its intention, of what it is, but because if it goes wrong, bad things happen. I don't know if I'm making much sense here. I'll try to sum it up: rape, abuse and murder are specifically intentioned to bring about harm. Incest is not.

In response to your other comment...well, I can't disagree that there are some pretty durn tasteless fics out there, and they annoy me too. I'm not much for incesty PWP. And as for doing what C.S. Lewis would like us to do...I can't deny that the likelihood of his approving of Pevensiecest is roughly equivalent to the likelihood of me finishing my homework tonight [read: no chance in hell.] But...well. I really have no argument against this. I'll just be honest and say that I really couldn't care less what C.S. Lewis thinks of my work, 'cause I think Pevensie love is beautiful in any form and he's dead anyway. So there.
Jempuddleduck3 on March 21st, 2006 11:36 am (UTC)
Hmm. I guess I feel that rape, abuse and incest aren't the same thing…I'll try to sum it up: rape, abuse and murder are specifically intentioned to bring about harm. Incest is not.

Well no- rape, murder and abuse aren’t the same as incest, I was merely equating them as all being Serious Issues. Issues that shouldn't be taken lightly in fic (in my opinion).

I'll just be honest and say that I really couldn't care less what C.S. Lewis thinks of my work, 'cause I think Pevensie love is beautiful in any form and he's dead anyway. So there.

I know you’re just being honest with your opinion and I'm sorry to be rude but this kind of response really saddens and angers me. You should have more respect for the person who created this story, for the person whose characters and world you’re playing with. If you wrote or created something very dear to your heart and some random came along and took it up, twisted it and made the characters do things you never intended or wanted them to do wouldn’t you be offended? It doesn't matter that he's dead- it's still his. Robin Hobb (another well known fantasy author) used this analogy:

The extreme analogy: You send me a photograph of your family reunion, titled ‘The Herkimer’s Get Together’. I think it looks dull. So I Photo-Shop it to put your friends and relations into compromising positions in various stages of undress. Then I post it on the Internet, under the title ‘The Herkimers Get Together’, and add a note that it was sent to me from Pete Herkimer of Missoula, Montana. Suddenly there is your face and name, and the faces of the people you care about, doing things that you would never do. Are you flattered that I thought your photograph was interesting enough to use? Or are you insulted and horrified? Are you alarmed that I so clearly connected work that is not yours to your good name?
Jempuddleduck3 on March 21st, 2006 12:06 pm (UTC)
Bah, missed this bit:

...Do I have a free speech right to write pornography and post it under your name? Do I have a free speech right to put a very poor quality product in the public eye, and connect it to a work that belongs to you? Please try to think of this in terms of your own life and career. It doesn’t matter if you are a writer or a plumber or an aerospace engineer. You have the right to receive credit for the work you do. No one should take that credit from you. No one should be able to connect your good name to work you did not create yourself.
Capegiocapegio on March 21st, 2006 02:57 pm (UTC)
Well no- rape, murder and abuse aren’t the same as incest, I was merely equating them as all being Serious Issues. Issues that shouldn't be taken lightly in fic (in my opinion).

Of out curiosity, why? I can see where rape, abuse and murder, where treated too lightly, can be degrading to people who have actually suffered through things of that type, but I'm not yet seeing how writing about incest could be offensive in the same way. In writing Pevensiecest I am in no way attempting to endorse the act in real life. I am not making light of the suffering of another person; I'm not really trying to do anything out of the ordinary but selectively choose what areas of reality are actually going to apply in my story.

Ouch. That's a rough analogy. I'm really sleepy and at the moment, I'd have to say you're right - there's not much difference. However, I'll attempt to draw a line here: I will agree that random smut between characters isn't much different than this, but incest writers aren't all about sex. Sometimes the authors are able to explore new sides of a character through incest, and the issue is sometimes handled very, very tastefully. The photo analogy applies only to smut in my opinion. Also, fanfiction is understood to be different than the work of the original. The story you told seems to suggest that the picture was presented in a way that would imply Peter Herkimer actually took that picture, whereas fanfiction is presented by saying "C.S. Lewis owns the characters and the world; what I do with them is not related in any way to his opinions."
Jempuddleduck3 on March 22nd, 2006 04:41 am (UTC)
I can see where rape, abuse and murder, where treated too lightly, can be degrading to people who have actually suffered through things of that type, but I'm not yet seeing how writing about incest could be offensive in the same way.

Hmm. Touche. I suppose that was a bad comparison. I'm trying to think of another way to express what I'm trying to say...I guess I just mean that incest is not something that should be taken so lightly. It's not something that should be glossed over or fluffified- it has consequences. It can lead to psychological issues with those involved not to mention the effect it would have on other family members. And as you mentioned earlier there are genetic issues. It's wrong, stupid and unbelievable to throw Peter and Susan or Peter and Edmund together romantically in a fic and not acknowledge that there's something off about it (and not just in a "Peter knew it was wrong- Edmund was his little brother!- but he couldn't stop" way).

In writing Pevensiecest I am in no way attempting to endorse the act in real life

I disagree with this. By not addressing the issues that incest brings up and by treating it as perfectly normal and acceptable, fan fic writers, in a sense, are endorsing it. They're putting across the idea that there is nothing wrong with siblings getting together romantically and (in some cases) that it's desirable- better than non-incestuous pairings.

I don't think the extremity of the analogy really matters. I used it to make the point that you're doing something to his characters that would distgust him. They're his characters. As Hobb says: try to think of this in terms of your own life and career.

The story you told seems to suggest that the picture was presented in a way that would imply Peter Herkimer actually took that picture, whereas fanfiction is presented by saying "C.S. Lewis owns the characters and the world; what I do with them is not related in any way to his opinions.

This is grasping at straws a little; you're still using and connecting his name and his works with something he would have been against.
Capegiocapegio on March 22nd, 2006 05:03 am (UTC)
It's wrong, stupid and unbelievable to throw Peter and Susan or Peter and Edmund together romantically in a fic and not acknowledge that there's something off about it.

This is where I have to disagree. I guess some people say that art reflects society, but that's not what I'm trying to do when I write incest fics. I'm not trying to say it's realistic. I'm not trying to say it would actually work out were the characters real. But that's the point, isn't it? They're fictional characters, and in the world of fiction I don't have to follow what would logically come of such actions. Maybe it's stupid to you, but to me, it can add another sense of depth to a good Narnia fic. Let me stress again that I don't by any means think Narnia fics HAVE to contain incest, and I enjoy simple sibling bonding as much as the next person, but if the author chooses to add to that, and they do it in a way that makes it SEEM plausible, I'm not going to raise any objections.

This is grasping at straws a little; you're still using and connecting his name and his works with something he would have been against.

Permit me to grasp at a few more straws. A photo is understood to reflect things the way they are. By posting it as an original photo, people may think that the picture is reflecting exactly what went on at that family reunion. I think this argument is more against RPF than it is against fanfiction.

Also, where do you draw the line for fanfiction? Do you think Lewis approves of all the stupid little hormonal Suefics the Moselians have produced? Why not raise moral objections to that, too? There is smut written between non-related characters; do you have a problem with Digory/Polly? They weren't married to each other, after all. Or, let's take the fics with really extreme OOC-ness; I read one once in which Edmund hasn't really repented, and he goes on to kill his siblings one by one. If you disapprove of all these things, you'd kill off half the fandom. Not that I'd mind the Sues going away, of course, but really it seems to me that fanfiction is all about exploring the characters and the world; if some people choose to explore some of the touchier topics of life, then that's their choice and so long as it's tasteful I can't object.

Wow. I think I'm in love with semicolons. And please forgive any incoherence...I'm really depressed at the moment. Damn hormones.
Jempuddleduck3 on March 22nd, 2006 06:05 am (UTC)
I don't think art always has to reflect society but in the case of incest I think it should. It’s just the way it is with me. That cultural bias is there and it’s very strong and I find writing or art that ignores that to be…half done and lazy.
They're fictional characters, and in the world of fiction I don't have to follow what would logically come of such actions. That's true. This is definitely moving into "personal opinion and bias" territory. As I said; incest is just one of those issues that for me to accept in a story, needs to be properly and fully explored. That's just how I see it. Perhaps you have one of these "issues"- maybe you can't read a fic about...I don't know...drug abuse, unless it's handled in a way that looks at all the repercussion etc. I don't really think it's profitable to continue on this line of debate. It may be stubborn or contrary or hypocritical but that's just how I feel about it.

Also, where do you draw the line for fanfiction?

Tricky question and one I thought hard about when posting. It is difficult to draw the line...My take on it is that you can go crazy with fan fiction if you have the original authors permission. For example, JK Rowling is fine with fan fiction and so I take that as an “okay” to fic writers to go wherever their imaginations may lead them. If you don’t have the author’s permission then it’s more precarious. In my gut I feel that writing fan fiction without the original authors permission is wrong BUT I’m also a filthy hypocrite because I write (and read it) anyway. Therefore I strive (and think others should strive) to at least either attempt to follow along the lines of Lewis’ writing or (and this is the more realistic option) try ensure that their fiction isn’t something that would offend him. Sue’s are bad but they’re not something that flies in the face of a world wide cultural taboo, which Lewis, as a Christian, no doubt held. Does that make sense?

If you disapprove of all these things, you'd kill off half the fandom

Can’t say I’d miss that half much...

if some people choose to explore some of the touchier topics of life, then that's their choice and so long as it's tasteful I can't object.

If it's tasteful and they're actually exploring it and not just throwing the siblings together because there isn't anyone else around and they want a little romance, or romance generated angst, or they think the actors looked good together then I don't object either. I could handle a fic, for example, that (and I'm going by movie canon here, in the books we know there are other humans) took a look at the isolation of the Pevensie's as the only humans in Narnia and how this effected their relationships (ie. how it lead to incest).
I still don't think Lewis would approve but at least the fic writer would be attempting something more realistic and wouldn't be condoning or promoting incest. (I mean "realistic" as in realistic within Lewis's world. If Peter and Edmund did start having feelings for each other in Canon I don't think it would all be happy happy joy joy).

I'd like to reiterate what I said earlier: I mean, if a fic writer was exploring the effect of incest on their (the Pevensies) relationships in a thoughtful and realistic manner then I would have less of a problem with it. My objection is to the careless and thoughtless way in which incest is so often used in this fandom and also to the way in which fic writers appear to not only excuse it but endorse it as well. I dislike the idea of incest between the Pevensies but less so if the author is tackling the subject with some depth.

***

Misplaced comma’s and way to many dash’s are my speciality. You apparently debate really well when depressed though- that post raised some really good points that had me thinking...Hope you cheer up soon, hormones are a bitch.
Capegiocapegio on March 22nd, 2006 06:22 am (UTC)
I don't really think it's profitable to continue on this line of debate. It may be stubborn or contrary or hypocritical but that's just how I feel about it.

Actually, I was just thinking the exact same thing - this is opinion now, and not really provable. I can't really think of one particular thing in fanfiction that really bothers me, but in case I haven't said this yet, I do understand where you're coming from entirely.

Sue’s are bad but they’re not something that flies in the face of a world wide cultural taboo...

-grumbles- Sueism SHOULD be a worldwide cultural taboo...

Can’t say I’d miss that half much...

Well I wasn't really suggesting that it would upset you, since if you disapproved of it obviously you wouldn't miss it. It was more for the benefit of people who DO enjoy things like that.

I do agree with you on one thing wholeheartedly; I hate the attitude of the people who just stick the Pevensies together because "there's no one else." Dude, if you're that desperate for romance, then make someone else up. I don't want to read about the Pevensies snogging each other just because they've got hormones. I'd much rather see them in a beneficial, happy, loving relationship if they're going to be together.

Now for a point that I'm only kinda gradually coming aware of: if you've taken the Narnian incest poll, you'll know that there's a question, something like "if you enjoy incest fics, why?" and my answer for that question was the only one where I felt absolutely sure. See, the option I chose was something like "it doesn't have anything to do with the fact that they're siblings, but rather with their characters." While the sibling aspect can add some interesting twists, I certainly don't ship Pevensies BECAUSE they're siblings. If I ship them at all, I ship them because they are interesting characters who have interesting relationships with one another, and I'd like to see what would happen if another side of that relationship was introduced. I know that in the original work, in Lewis's work, they are siblings, but they're still unique characters with the potential for many things beyond what Lewis wrote.

You apparently debate really well when depressed though...

Thankyouverymuchindeed. -quietly sobs over history essay-
suborbitalsuborbital on March 13th, 2006 11:34 am (UTC)
How do the book-verse and the movie-verse interact in Narnia fanfiction? Do you prefer to work from one or the other when writing, or do you blend them at will? How has the movie influenced the way we write?

If I'm writing a fanfiction, or reading someone else's, I think it should be stated whether the fanfic is based on the movieverse of bookverse. Because there are some differences. I think the movie has influenced a new generation of fandom writers, and I would have to say that it does influence the way we write too. Because from my own point of view, I think of a different Peter when I read the books, to when I watch the movie.

Should fanfiction stay true to Lewis's ideals as well as his stories? How should fanfiction writers deal with the allegorical nature of many of Lewis's plotlines?

I think they should try and stay true to the characters, and by doing that, they'll probably inadvertantly stay true to the ideals. I think the writers should handle it in a way they can grasp themselves, and in a way that fits naturally to their own style or way of thinking without overwhelming them.

What do you think of AU (alternate universe) fics?

A great example of creativity. And I think fandoms are here because we feel inspired to express some creativity. So all power to AU.

What's your attitude on RPF (real person fiction)? Can it be considered Narnia fanfiction? Should it be written at all?

I'm not sure it should be considered Narnia fanfiction. But I have no problem with it. Same thing as fanfiction to me, except it's a different fandom IMO. But that's why we tag them RPF.

What is the general quality of Narnia fanfiction like? Does it tend to be better than in other fandoms? Worse? No discernible difference?

I don't know many other fandoms. I think it's too early to tell. Too early to compare. And I don't think we should be too hard on what we read, because a lot of the contributing authors are young and trying to express themselves creatively. I have read some really good and interesting stuff in this fandom, from all branches of Narnia ships and eras. As far as discernable differences ... well, besides the fact that Narnia just kicks the other fandoms in terms of the fact that we're Narnia ... nuff said lol.

What do you wish got written more often? A certain pairing, a certain character, a certain era, a certain genre?

This is going to be an incredibly divided fandom. Because Narnia tends to attract a lot of dreamers, and people who are staunch to the christian allegories, slashers, inkers, etc. And a lot of them will conflict. I think I wish that we'd get more stories written about time periods that aren't covered in the books. Definitely way more Golden Age stuff. As far as pairings, I'm not sure. I would love to see more action and stories that challenge the moral fibre of characters like Peter, Mr. Tumnus etc.

What is the worst thing about Narnia fanfiction as it is written now? What is the best thing?

The worst thing I would have to say is the little clique thing building up inside the fandom between certain 'ships' and what not. I have a feeling this fandom will become fairly divided as it grows. Some people hate the preachy fanfics, some people hate the inky fanfics, some people hate the slashy ones, etc, etc. I think it is up to the writer to justify their writing to the people who will read it. So if you're going to write something completely against the grain of what was originally intended, then justify by actions and words in your writing why things have gone this way. Help people understand. As far as the best things about this fanfiction is the embracing of new stories and ideas and the general support that is given to new contributors. Narnia has such a vast world to explore, there's plenty of room for everyone to share a bit of what Narnia means to them.
(Deleted comment)
suborbitalsuborbital on March 14th, 2006 01:25 am (UTC)
the incest fanfics like peter/susan etc.
Natalie: Susan - Smileronniekins77 on March 13th, 2006 10:40 pm (UTC)
I am LOVING this community already. :)

How do the book-verse and the movie-verse interact in Narnia fanfiction? Do you prefer to work from one or the other when writing, or do you blend them at will? How has the movie influenced the way we write?

I tend to see more fanfic writers using the movie-verse instead of the book-verse when writing their fanfiction. I think it's because a lot of people are new to the Narnia fandom (including myself) and they either haven't read the books, or prefer the movie over the book when it comes to things like hair color, characterization, etc. As for myself, I've only read four of the books so far (TMN, LWW, THAHS, & PC) and I know what happens at the end of TLB. However, I've noticed that I've been writing mostly by the book. I keep the Pevensies the ages they are in the books, and I try to keep to their original characterizations as much as possible (i.e. not making Peter a womanizer or Susan more like Lucy just for the sake of doing so). However, when it comes to the character's looks, I find myself drawing from the film. Lucy has dark hair in my fanfic, simply because I saw the movie first and it's how I picture her now. (Kind of like how I imagine Dudley in Harry Potter - in the books, his hair is blonde - in the movies, it's dark.) So I would definitely say the movie has influenced a lot of fanfic writers in that respect and because I don't think there were a lot of Narnia fanfic writers before the movie came out. :)

Should fanfiction stay true to Lewis's ideals as well as his stories? How should fanfiction writers deal with the allegorical nature of many of Lewis's plotlines?

This is actually a very good question and I think it depends on how you interpret Lewis' ideals. I, for one, do not believe that Lewis "hated" women or sold them out by not redeeming Susan. I also don't think he blatantly tried to shove Christianity on anyone, even if he was writing it in his stories. I do think that not everyone has to believe in what he thought, but they should respect it. For example, I do not appreciate outright Aslan bashing in fics, simply because someone doesn't like the fact that he represents Jesus. I believe that if you like the Narnia series, you have to accept the fact that this is what Lewis wrote - he did it for himself - and if you like it that much to write fic about it, you should have the courtesy to do him and his ideas justice.

Obviously, I don't think the Christian allegory in the books has to tie in with every fic you write - after all, there are fics written about this series that don't even take place in Narnia. Also, it's not necessary to bring any of the symbolism into a fic at all - even if they are in Narnia and Aslan is in the story. You just simply have to pay Lewis respect if you do write about. Does that make sense?
Natalie: Peter - Smileronniekins77 on March 13th, 2006 10:41 pm (UTC)
Other comment was too long. :) Wow, I've realized that I bolded one question and had the other ones italicized. *headdesk*

What do you think of AU (alternate universe) fics?

I don't really care about them one way or the other. I've never really liked them, but I'm a lot more open minded than I was when I first got into fandoms in general. If it's well written, I'll read it. :)

What's your attitude on RPF (real person fiction)? Can it be considered Narnia fanfiction? Should it be written at all?

RPF is not Narnia fanfiction. It's RPF, LOL. RPF has absolutely nothing to do with Narnia, and I honestly don't think you should write it unless you're a good writer. At least with Narnia, you have characters - you know them, how they act, how they talk, what they feel. With real people, you don't. Not only does that make it harder to write, you could have someone so off-base that it's offensive, cheesy, or just plain dumb. I've only written one RPF fic and the people portrayed in it were grossly exaggerated. It wasn't meant to be taken seriously and I think when you try to write RPF that is meant to be taken seriously - where you have people actually believing that your fic could be real - is where a lot of people go wrong.

What is the general quality of Narnia fanfiction like? Does it tend to be better than in other fandoms? Worse? No discernible difference?

I've only read Harry Potter fanfic, to tell you the truth, and it's a lot more developed than Narnia fanfic is at the moment. Narnia writers are just learning about this world (because, like I said earlier, most of us are new) and that probably leaves something to be desired in their fics. Some people who write Narnia fanfic haven't read the books or done the research and their fics reflect that. This isn't to say that all Narnia fanfic is bad - because it certainly isn't - but people who haven't taken the time out to check details and such shouldn't be writing it. Also, most people don't have a beta. And the people that do still have bad grammar and spelling - I generally think Narnia fanfic writers are young(er) people.

What do you wish got written more often? A certain pairing, a certain character, a certain era, a certain genre?

Oooh, good question!! I wish that a lot of things would get written! All Narnia fic seems to deal with the Pevensies, which is not bad (because who doesn't love the Pevensies???) but I'd love to see fic that involves other characters. What I would give to see a fic about Digory and Polly...I would LOVE to see someone write about the two of them together (as friends or otherwise). I'd also like to see more Edmund/Lucy, because there's just not enough of it. ;) And I REALLY would like to see more simple Pevensie fic (which probably contradicts my earlier statement) where they're not incestuous and have only familial love for each other. Because as much as I love Peter/Susan and Edmund/Lucy, I love the family stuff more. :)

What is the worst thing about Narnia fanfiction as it is written now? What is the best thing?

Hmmm. The worst thing is OOCness, details that don't add up, and spelling/grammar. The best thing is probably the fact that the people who write the incestuous fics write it very tastefully for the most part, which is a VERY good thing. <333
Capegiocapegio on March 21st, 2006 06:10 am (UTC)
"Also, most people don't have a beta. And the people that do still have bad grammar and spelling - I generally think Narnia fanfic writers are young(er) people."

Agreed - people just aren't careful enough. So many errors are made just because people don't proofread their own work. Everyone makes mistakes sometimes, but lately I've grown frustrated because no matter how many times I tell people about errors they're making regularly, they don't bother to change it. I understand not going back and fixing what's already been done, 'cause we're human and therefore lazy, but I feel that when an author is making a certain mistake regularly and I point it out, the very least they can do is to avoid it in the future. Gah.
The White Ghost: aslannimoloth on March 17th, 2006 09:44 pm (UTC)
Obviously now that there is a big mainstream movie, there is a growing fandom, but it saddens me a bit that that's all many people know of Narnia, and that's all they write regarding (although from fanfic's point of view, that's not such an important thing). But as has been mentioned above, it would be excellent to see fanfic expanding on the universe that is only hinted at in the books - there is so much!

The real person fic I think is nothing to do with Narnia, and slightly disturbing too. Imagine they found some of it - it'd be pretty wierd for them. I don't know I'd be comfortable writing about real people - it almost seems disrespectful, or a breach of privacy in a strange sort of way.

As for incest - I don't really know much about the Narnian fanfic scene, but what I've gathered from skimming through is that it seems to be predominantly incestuous (or real person). Personally, I think that tarnished the fandom and the Narnian universe and ideals (to me). I see it as a pure, good place, a place of joy and innocence, and I don't want it spoiled for me by such things. However, it is someone's right to write what they will - I'll just be steering well clear of it. It's not right, and I don't see how anyone could find it appealing.

Bring on the development of the real Narnia in a Narnian style!
Aeli: Lucy arriveshinter on March 20th, 2006 11:07 pm (UTC)
On the subject of incest: I myself am a fan of multiple incest pairings, although I can definitely see your side of the argument, and think your expression of it here is an eloquent one. I'm currently writing an essay on the subject, and I was wondering — do you mind if I quote you? Due to my own interests, most of my exposure in this fandom has been to fellow "inkers", but I would like to be able to present both sides of the issue. And if you consent, would you prefer to be quoted anonymously or by name?
The White Ghost: menimoloth on March 21st, 2006 11:48 am (UTC)
You can quote me if you like. I don't mind being acknowledged, but I suppose it depends where the article's for - what is it for? And do you want to quote by real name or lj username? Let me know.

Also, I think I meant "tarnishes" rather than "tarnished" there. Wrong tense.

Good luck with the article.
Aeli: Aslan roarshinter on March 21st, 2006 12:02 pm (UTC)
It's simply for fandom publication; I'm not intending on publishing it anywhere or turning it in to a teacher or any such thing. I'll probably be quoting usernames.
The White Ghostnimoloth on March 21st, 2006 12:44 pm (UTC)
That's cool. Go ahead!
Capegiocapegio on March 21st, 2006 06:14 am (UTC)
What is the worst thing about Narnia fanfiction as it is written now? What is the best thing?

Oh, just because no one has said it yet, and it has to be said: Suefics! Argh! Moseley, look, I think you're as wonderful as the next, but did you really have to go and screw up my fandom? I'm just sick of eagerly looking through the updates and finding that over half of them are the badly-written fantasies of preteen and teen girls. The problem with Narnia fanfiction right now is William Moseley, because it's his fault we're swamped with crap much of the time. /rant
Joelle: ed scarednarnianqueen119 on May 27th, 2006 08:09 pm (UTC)
Should fanfiction stay true to Lewis's ideals as well as his stories? How should fanfiction writers deal with the allegorical nature of many of Lewis's plotlines?

Yes!!! Lewis had strong values, and his stories were a brilliant reflection of that, whether he meant to or not. For me, the values and how they are reflected in characters and other things are the most important parts of a story.

For example, I like to write Harry Potter fanfiction. However, I can't stand Harry or his friends really, or any of the magic stuff. But, I love the values of leadership, honesty, bravery, wisdom, etc. that are a part of the Hogwarts world. The same holds true for Narnia stuff; it should reflect the basic values of love, truth, honor, etc.

What do you think of AU (alternate universe) fics?

I love them!! I, myself, tend to write these sort of things, and think this way. No matter what fandom it is, I'm always thinking of new characters and new situations for the story. They're reflections of brilliant minds!

What do you wish got written more often? A certain pairing, a certain character, a certain era, a certain genre?

It's hard to say, really. I enjoy reading fics about individual characters and their growth, but I also love stories about family. I don't like as much the romance and pairings.