The Good, The Bad, And The Fan Fiction: Part 3

My Beatles fan fiction for the day.
*Disclaimer* I would rather be a Paperback Writer than a Fan Fiction Writer

Hopefully you’ve read Part 1, on good elements of fan fiction, and Part 2, on the not so good elements of fan fiction.  Now, we’re on to the final section: my own forays into fan fiction.

As a quick reminder, here are the two definitions of fan fiction I’m working with:

  1. A piece of fiction that both is based on and pays homage to a previously created work or story.  This is both professional and amateur.
  2. A piece of unauthorized fiction based on copyrighted materials.

And now, the final chapter:

My Fan Fiction

Fan fiction served as my training wheels when I was in my teens, and I think that’s the best value of fan fiction: A gateway into expanding your own imagination.  During that period, most characters I created happened to know everything and would clear up any misconceptions and confusions.  Some of these are ideas and concepts from my college years.  A few are a little embarrassing, but also fun.

Original Source: Star Wars

Working Title: Palpatine’s Heir

Overview: Did I mention I’m a Star Wars fan? Here’s the story: Emperor Palpatine has a son and direct heir who’s really a good guy and has a romantic history with Mara Jade (a popular and super cool character from the books who served as The Emperor’s Hand). I think his name was Alec, or Laurence.  I don’t quite remember, but if his name was Alec it wasn’t done as a clever homage to Alec Guinness.  Palpatine’s son later works with Luke, Leia, and Han Solo to overcome a random Imperial bad guy.

Original Source: The Prydain Series by Lloyd Alexander

Working Title: The Dark Lord of Mortimer

Overview: Lloyd Alexander’s Prydain series is one of the greatest influences on my own writing.  It’s written for 4-6 grade, but I think the stories and characters resonate with readers of all ages.  When I was younger, I thought my story was more original than it was.  However, the world is very similar to Prydain.  Within my story was a dark overlord, undead armies, and birds with a scorpion tail, all of which were much better written by Lloyd Alexander.  The story itself has taken on many iterations, so I don’t quite remember the plot.

Original Title: Legend of King Arthur

Working Title: Hey, Arthur!  The Musical

Overview:  I took a stab at writing terrible musicals in high school.  Whenever I get my first P.N. Guins podcast up, you’ll have a sample of my… remarkable song writing skills.  However, the intent of this musical was to lampoon the King Arthur legend. I think Monty Python’s Spamalot is far higher quality than what my fourteen year old self could make.

The idea came after reading various takes and versions of the Arthurian legend.  However, the deeper I went, the more I realized King Arthur’s legend is depressing and disturbing.  I think this musical was my response.  I’m grateful for the show Merlin from the BBC, which uses all the good parts of the Arthurian legend without the more disturbing pieces.  Do understand I still enjoy King Arthur.  In fact, I have one story on the back burner involving a secret society of the Round Table.

Original Work: Sleeping Beauty

Working Title: Post-Sleeping Beauty

Overview: This is my current project, and is in the third draft.  The first draft was written in high school, but had enough good elements that I brushed it off about three years ago.  Hopefully, this draft will be publishable.

The short trailer version is: Sleeping Beauty wakes up to find her kingdom destroyed, and the evil queen has won.  Then, the princess goes on an awesome, booty-kicking adventure to defeat the evil queen and find a place in the modern world.

Some similar current pop culture works are Snow White and the Huntsman and Once Upon A Time.  I guess it’s the era of the action princess.  That’s pretty great.

Original Work: The Last Starfighter

Working Title: The Next Starfighter

Overview: In the last scene of The Last Starfighter, Alex’s younger brother Louis runs to the arcade machine to become a Starfighter like his brother.  My story begins there, and jumps to Louis in high school as he tries to defeat the updated Last Starfighter video game with 3-D graphics.  However,  a girl defeats the game and is recruited.  Louis hitch-hikes, and they go on an epic adventure among the stars.  (Did I mention I love spaceships?)  I’ve tried to adapt this to an original plot and setting, because I think it would be fun, but haven’t figured that out… yet.

By the way, in the movie within my mind, Alex’s cruiser space ship enters to Kashmir by Led Zeppelin, and there’s a dog fight done to Whole Lotta Love, also by Led Zeppelin.

A LEGO Gunstar model!

Original Work: Sunset Boulevard

Working Title: Thompson Boulevard

Overview: This piece is a short story I wrote in college that is a homage to the film Sunset Boulevard.  However, it is set in the music world and in my home town.  The piece is  different enough to not fall under copyright violation, so I’m working on brushing it off and submitting it for publication.

Original Work: Batman: The Dark Knight Rises, and Inception

Working Title: The Dark Inception Rises

Overview:  I was working on a blog post about this the other day, when I realized it qualifies as fan fiction.  Due to the combination of both being directed by Christopher Nolan, and the large number of actors in the film, it’s clear The Dark Knight Rises could be a sequel to Inception.  While I was working on the piece, however, I discovered this blog post, which has a better plot than what I came up with.

Ultimately, fan fiction isn’t done for fame or fortune.  It is done out of admiration and for fun.  So, to that twelve year old writing their first Harry Potter fiction, keep on working.  Someday, though, use that spark of imagination to create your own world.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this overview.  How do you feel about fan fiction?  Have you dabbled in it too?

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10 thoughts on “The Good, The Bad, And The Fan Fiction: Part 3

    • What I find fascinating is how an idea from someone else’s imagination can tumble around in our own, and then be created into something different and new. Yes, the threads are still there, but it has become original and interesting.

  1. I like fan fiction really..and I have no problem with it..The only time I get upset is if a character does something or says something out of character..unless the character is completely revamped or redone!

    • I think fan fiction done out of fun and as a homage can be really fun, but, like you say, fan fiction that warps the original character is frustrating.
      By the way, I fixed the typo you mentioned. Thanks for stopping by.

  2. Finally got here; my apologies for taking so long. We did take similar paths, though, being a few years older, I was Trekking instead of Warring.

    I was reminded by your link in part II that Marion Zimmer Bradley is alleged to have stopped publishing the Darkover fan fiction anthologies after a dispute with a fan who had submitted an example or two.

    Back around 1980, I ran into fan fiction (under your definition) that turned Mordred into the star of the Arthur cycle, in that he was, like Twain’s Connecticut Yankee, a modern practical type, albeit with a more vicious sense of morality. It was an interesting twist in its own right. Don’t know if it ever was published in full.

    Now here’s a challenge: what’s the most recent piece of fiction you’ve read (or seen) that made you want to write fan fiction about it?

    • Brave and its lack of living up to its potential ignited much discussion in my close circle (you’ll notice that from a previous post.) It’s the material that has a lot of potential, but fails to utilize it that tends to ignite my imagination.

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