After a weekend of working on various things, it’s now time to–get back to work? Seems like only Friday I was looking forward to a relaxing time of doing nothing. Which doesn’t happen around here, because if I’m doing nothing, then I’m probably sleeping. Correct that: trying to sleep. Here I am, up at four-thirty again this morning, and my head is feeling a tad woozy.
One day I’ll go to bed at ten-thirty and wake up at six. It will happen. But today is not that day.
I was reading film reviews on Something Awful–’cause if you’re going to read film reviews, you may as well read something that’s gonna be funny, or at least sarcastic as hell–and they were doing a review of The Mortal Instruments movie. While they didn’t care for it–they did give it a four out of ten rating “As a Piece of Absurdest Humor,” so it’s got that going for it–they did mention the fact that “Cassandra Clare”, the pen name for one Judith Rumelt, got her start penning Harry Potter and Lord of the Ring fan fiction. They also mention that there’s more than a passing resemblance between some of the characters in The Mortal Instruments, and some of the characters and passages in the HP fanfic, all of which was pulled from the Internet as soon as her publishing career got started.
As Neil Gaiman has pointed out, fan fiction is writing, and anything that gets people writing is a good thing. He’s also said he doesn’t care if you do fan fiction of his work, because, hey: nothing you’re going to do is going to impact anything he’ll do to his characters. He probably wants to stay away from Coraline slashfic, however . . .
His point about fan fiction is well taken, however. It’s very likely that Neil never reads it, or if he has he’s sort of skimmed over it and thought, “Hum, yeah,” and moved on to working on his HBO adaptation and Doctor Who scripts. And he’s correct: there’s nothing millions of words of fan fiction will do to his characters that will reflect what he’s going to do to them, so why sweat it?
I wonder how he’d feel, however, if someone wrote a million words of Sandman fan fiction, put the character through some interesting changes–like having him get hammered in a strip club while watching his sister Death gyrate to some Millie Cyrus crunk as she’s making out with a demonic Taylor Swift–and then, a year later, finds a book called, Sleepytime Sam, the Dream King. Book One: Down and Out in Sister Stripperville. Oh, sure, it’s just a coincidence the characters bear a little resemblance to his . . .
Not that I’ll have to worry about any of this. I doubt that anyone will start ripping off my characters and write stories of their strange escapades, ’cause anything you can do, I know I can do better–and I love being strange. I need to open up the strangeness stuff a little more, ’cause I feel I’m getting rusty. Maybe it’s time to write my magnum opus about gay cuttlefish shapeshifters–
Oh, wait: it’s been done.