24 July, 2010

What Gay Vampires and Mopey Teenagers Can Teach Us



Some people are just going to hate shit no matter what people do. You can't please everybody. I guess you might think that I'm one to talk about this, but at least I know it's a problem in my life. Sometimes, though, we're so blinded by our biases that we don't pause and think about what something we loath-- Twilight-- has to offer us.

Pajiba wrote an article about attending a Twilight fan fiction panel at Comic Con and it's actually quite amazing. There's a lot of cogent points made by both the writer of the piece and the people inside the panel. It's a glimpse into a world none of us are particularly interested, but, like anything else that exists outside of our little, sheltered spheres, it can be rather profound-- especially if it's edited down to the good bits.

Now the vast majority of fan fiction-- in fact the vast majority of writing-- is bilge. It's a consequence of having printing presses and literate people, so I guess it's a small price to pay for not shitting in holes and having the Bible chained to a stone pillar.

Besides showing us a side of Twilight that very few of us care to look into, I think the article touches on something that effects most of the people I know and consider my friends, which is the writing process. It's hard. It's ugly. And a lot of the time you've got to turn into the person you hate in order to make something good. Lord knows I've written my share of boring, pretentious things, but if I never did those thing, I'd also have never gotten around to writing the stuff I like, the stuff I know is pretty good. Pride, in a strange way comes from pain, and I guess you see it with this article. There's nothing more embarrassing or lame as writing fan fiction-- fan fiction for a property that isn't even all that good-- but when I read this I kind of realized that it was basically training wheels for writers.

At some point we all fell off and ate shit on our bikes and many of us had training wheels on our bikes. It was kind of silly and embarrassing, but it helped us get to where we wanted to be. I suppose another analogy in there is for any athlete. They've got to lose a lot of matches, pull a lot of muscles, and wake up in a state of catatonic agony in order to become the Tier One performer that they want to be. I guess the same goes for writing. Sometimes you've just got to put aside all of the things you don't want to do and accept that this kind of thing is going to hurt.

Editor's Note: Yeah, this was an excuse to tie The Thick of It in with Twilight.