I blame [livejournal.com profile] lizbee for this. Well, that and the fact that I finally have a scanner.

You wouldn't know it from my artistic output now (she said, looking ruefully at her neglected deviantART gallery), but I used to draw at least one picture every day. In fact, back in my teens I couldn't imagine giving up drawing any more than I could imagine not writing. I seriously thought about taking a double major in university, with the eventual hope of writing and illustrating my own books. As time wore on, however, the writing kind of pushed the drawing out of my mental spotlight, and here I am twenty years later, still working away at the writing, but only dabbling now and then on the artistic side.

So. All that being said, I've unearthed some of my old sketches and drawings, and now I shall inflict them on you share them with you, for whatever it's worth:

Knife (1986) )

Portraits of Steerpike and Fuchsia (1987) )

Perryn A'Tavis and Rissian Isolar (1990) )

I have one more piece of old art to share, but this one was drawn by a real master -- Bill Sienkiewicz. My brother Pete commissioned it from Bill when he was visiting the Silver Snail comic shop in Toronto, and I have no idea what happened to the original, but since I still have a photocopy, I've scanned it for the amusement of my fellow 80's comic geeks. [livejournal.com profile] kateorman at least should get a kick out of this one, since I know she likes Warlock at least:

Legion and Warlock, by Bill Sienkiewicz )

I scanned a few more pieces last night for [livejournal.com profile] lizbee, but they're the kind of thing best saved for a "Humiliate Yourself in Public" meme (i.e. illos and fashion designs for my pernicious and now mercifully defunct sword-swinging Time Lady princess Mary Sue, who scored a smashing 102 when I ran her through the Litmus Test), so I'll spare us both the embarrassment.
Here be memeage:

1. Use fanfiction.net's Search >> Story By Summary and look up your name in either Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings.

2. If there are any Mary Sues that share your name, pick the worst-sounding one and post the summary.

Erica will get a kick out of this one )

More cheesy goodness )

Well, that was fun.
[livejournal.com profile] naomichana just wrote a really wonderful essay about the abuse of the term "Mary Sue", which as most of you know is a subject near and dear to my heart. So go read it.

And hee! to [livejournal.com profile] hedda62's related comment about the Giant Squid being her personal Mary Sue...


May. 6th, 2003 12:22 pm
rj_anderson: (Margot Liz Barr)
Just when you think FF.net has nothing left to say... this arrived a few minutes ago, for Part Three of The Potions Master's Apprentice:
You know, it might surprise you, but some of us come here to read fiction about their favorite characters. I've seen you wrote more of this 'Maud' person. Not that I'm saying you write bad... But just reading about some OC isn't what (most of us) are here for. Luckily, she's not a real Mary-Sue, the beautiful, perky, brilliant teenage girl who everyone loves. At least your character is well-developed.... I'd like to see some fiction from you about the Canon [character]s, willing to write some?

I'll put that in the to-be-considered-but-not-too-seriously file, along with "Have you ever thought of doing a Trio fic?" and "Why on earth write about Snape, of all people?" Once I've got over being "surprised", I mean. What is this thing called... canon?
The review of the The Potions Master's Apprentice is back up at [livejournal.com profile] lawful_fic. My comments on the revised version are here.
Further to my recent post on the subject, the original [livejournal.com profile] lawful_fic review of The Potions Master's Apprentice has been taken down. The author is reworking the review and plans to post a revised version on Wednesday.

I don't expect she will change her mind about disliking the fic, nor do I even think she should; but it looks as though she did think my complaint had some validity, and plans to make her criticisms more reasoned and careful on the second go-round. Which is good, and all I really ask for.

(Well, that and maybe one really witty piece of snark that I can giggle over, like the bit in the MarySues review about Maud's sense of self-righteousness having its own gravitational pull. That was funny.)

It is no doubt revelatory of my character, however, that when I found the author had taken down the review I felt obscurely guilty for complaining about it.
With all this talk about Mary Sues, I've been struck by a new thought.

Some people have mentioned seeing MS characters in published fiction -- Anita Blake is frequently mentioned, and of course there are other plausible candidates like Amelia Peabody, Mary Russell, and Anne of Green Gables (come on -- she's a spunky orphan with a tragic past, an unusual hair colour, and she wins the heart of everybody she meets! How can she not be a Mary Sue?*).

However, I haven't heard anybody mention an even more serious and irritating problem -- Mary Sues in real life!

Think about it. Alexander the Great? So a Gary Stu. Elizabeth Taylor? I mean, she has violet eyes**! And let's not even get started on Gwyneth Paltrow...

But that's just a tiny sample. So step right up, folks! Nominate your favorite RL Mary Sues and Gary Stus. We might even start a new genre -- RPMS fic!

*This is, by the way, mostly facetious. I like Anne just fine.
**Yes, I do know they aren't really violet. Tell that to the press, though.
This is an interesting review of my HP fic(s). [livejournal.com profile] lizbee has already made a couple of comments on one remark she felt was misleading; but it was another part of the review that particularly baffled me.

MORE... )

I don't mind having my work reviewed critically. Some of my favorite reviewers have been quite direct in pointing out flaws, as well as being honest about things they personally don't like to see in stories (Oi! for instance, never gave a fig for Snape and didn't particularly warm to Maud either, and I still loved her reviews). I can even think of some pretty severe criticisms myself (for the record, those include wobbly characterization of Maud in the first story; a number of embarrassing continuity gaffes involving numbers, dates, and architectural layouts; a really cringe-worthy bit of dialogue in the first chapter of IWS; and too much schmoop in Snape's letters, among others).

But I do object to the reviewer misrepresenting the content of my fics and disparaging faults of which they are not in fact guilty. As [livejournal.com profile] lizbee pointed out, that's not a valid form of criticism.


Feb. 15th, 2003 10:10 pm
rj_anderson: (Default)
[really ugly graphic deleted out of mercy to my readers' delicate sensibilities, or my innate graphical snobbery, or something like that]

You're a die-hard warrior. Dark and bitter, your
mind is on one thing- revenge! Whether it be
the Borg who assimilated your Aunty Maude, or a
bunch of Orcs who stole your hamster and won't
give it back, you're out to get them. Still,
you do have a soft, pathetic side that rears
its ugly head every now and again- mostly when
there's a Rather Hot Canon Character about...

What type of Mary Sue are you?
brought to you by Quizilla
This LJ entry by [livejournal.com profile] alara_r made me want to hug her and then weep gratefully on her shoulder.

What she said.
And now that I've written that subject line, I have the oddest urge to sing it to the tune of "Centerfold"... now there's a filk whose time has not come.

Anyway, thanks to [livejournal.com profile] lizbee for giving me the heads-up on this clever little quiz:

Which Potterverse OC Are You?

And to my great amusement, not only did I not get Maud as my result, looking back at the quiz I actually have no idea what answers I'd have to change in order to get her. So much for the people who accused Maud of being my Mary Sue...

...which reminds me of something I would just like to get off my chest. I don't mind there being an unfavorable [livejournal.com profile] marysues review of The Potions Master's Apprentice. It doesn't even upset me that [livejournal.com profile] mauralabingi, the writer of the review, thinks Maud is a Mary Sue -- that's her opinion, and she's got a right to voice it. And as I wrote in my blog when I first discovered that review, many of the comments made were actually quite clever and amusing.

What I do find irritating is that in order to make Maud sound more obviously Mary-Sueish, the review actually made a number of false claims. For instance, that the word "tousled" puts in a frequent appearance in reference to Maud's hair (which it doesn't -- in fact it doesn't appear at all); or that her eyes are described as "lambent" (which they never are). The reviewer also claims that Maud is "loved by all except homely Slytherin girls and Draco Malfoy", although Maud's isolation and friendlessness at Hogwarts is frequently emphasized in both this story and its sequel. The review goes on to say that "Maud answers more questions in class than Hermione" (when in fact she answers only one, and that only because Snape asks her directly) and "has natural abilities at magic to rival Harry's" (although she gets beaten in every single magical duel, and only her skill at Potions is considered exceptional).

All of which is to say, people, go ahead and rip on the stories if you want to, and find any legitimate flaws you like; in fact, I'd be glad to hear any criticisms you have to offer that might improve my writing in future. But don't make up things just so you can complain about them.

There, now I feel much better.


rj_anderson: (Default)

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