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Old May 16th, 2018, 01:03 AM #21
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SuperselfieRed wrote: View Post

My biggest problem with keeping a PR fanfiction alive is the fact that I primarily deal with short fiction and I tend to get too engrossed in the big picture. I want to tell an epic that spans so many different teams and builts into a tower of overarching storylines. Unfortunately, I have a hard time playing the long game and when I deal with a large period of writer's block I've already disconnected with that universe and can't get back into it.
Try to focus on the MEDIUM picture instead of the big one by witing about a single team. After multiple stories about that team, move on to the next group. Still have plot twists and interesting, even unexpected things happen.
Here is a very good video on writer's block...


Last edited by PR Master; May 16th, 2018 at 01:13 AM.
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Old May 18th, 2018, 04:58 PM #22
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A few reasons.

For one, this is something that youíll see in any fandom, but itís especially prominent in this one because of how the show works: over-ambition. PR, Sentai, KR; all almost all toku runs with the concept of the Ďstand alone seasoní being its fundamental building block, and some of the most exciting parts are the occasional crossovers. So you get seventeen year old Tim who has this super awesome idea and by golly heís going to write a forty episode Hexagon without really understanding how much time and effort that takes. Ideas are easy; execution is not. You see the same problem with game mods: take a look at Skyrimís mod community. After seven some years the Nexusmod site is LITTERED with the bones of projects of people whoíd never modded before thinking that they could create a fully-realized worldspace twice the size of Skyrim proper complete with dungeons and scripted quests, and do it all in a few afternoons. It never occurred to them that it took an entire paid studio years to create all the assets and then construct them.

Yíknow, until the enormity of the project settles down on them and they get crushed. As it turns out, Athena doesnít emerge fully formed from Zeusís brow.

Most fandoms donít have AS much of a problem as this*stuff like say RWBY or Gravity Falls or Steven Universe or <insert favorite anime here> all have a ton of one-shots or smaller series because the show doesnít revolve around disposable mega-arcs. Itís okay just to write an episode, or a scene; helped along by the fact that you have a coherent cast and not an anthology series that creates new disposable teams ever year or two.

And that takes me to my next point. When it comes down to it? Power Rangers is boring. PR is a late byproduct of the 80ís animated toy commercial Ďsafe for all agesí shtick, except unlike Transformers or whoever, due to its unique construction PR was never allowed to evolve.

And before you get the pitchforks out, visualize for me Tommy. What characteristics does Tommy have? Who is Tommy as a character? If you search really hard, youíll find a scattering of bits that were used for one-episode issues (his forgetfulness), a vague guilt for being under an evil spell and...really whatever we project onto him. ĎTommyí as a character is Ďthe new guyí then Ďthe leaderí. Itís the same for Jason, and Zack, and Rocky, and Kat, and <insert non-red/sixth character from LG, LR, TF, or WF here>.

PR has maybe two dozen genuinely compelling characters, and almost all of them are either villains or sidekicks. And even when on the rare occurrence that you DO have multiple compelling characters (like DT), thereís not too much meaningful interaction between them. Zackís interaction with Kimberly is almost exactly the same as his interaction with Billy. Same with Trini and Jason or Tommy. Same with Billy and Zack or Tommy. Theyíre all just generic friends, I guess. Some seasons (DT, RPM) handle this better than others, but ultimatelyÖthe power rangers are role models, not people. Itís like trying to write season one TNG fanfic and Roddenberryís ghost is breathing down your neck.

In Steven Universe Steven idolizes each of the other gems for different reasons. They also each have different bonds with each other that donít just neatly fold into Saved by the Bell-esque shit. Each of the main characters of RWBY have a different dynamic with each other. Same with Gravity Falls, same with Avatar, same with...well, you get the idea.

What Iím getting at is that writing PR fanfic is HARD. Itís one of the hardest shows to get into, especially if youíre just starting out. All those cool ideas you have? Theyíre only cool until you get three chapters in and realize that PR has no characters, no themes, no anything. Even its vaunted lore is really just a cornucopia of throw-away lines with no real cohesion or universe behind it. We LOVE PR lore, but thatís really just the headcanon weíve made for it.

(Evangelion has shit potential for fanfics due to the tightness of its narrative, yet has a sizable fanfic community thanks to the potential of its themes and characters)

So Timmy gets six chapters into his 40 chapter Hexagon throwdown and realizes that...hey, yeah. This is a slog. Thereís nothing gripping him to it, and he doesnít even know WHY. Heís too young and naive to understand the underlying structure of storytelling, but he still gets it on a subconscious level. Six chapters in and thereís no gripping character drama. Thereís no cute Marvel-esque quipping scenes (and any that there are are forced because thatís not how those characters work. Thereís no themes that drive the plot forward or streamline them into a coherent message.

Itís all sound and fury, signifying nothing*and for a show that REVOLVES around a visual medium, thatís damning for a work of text. And while Timmy might not notice it, his brain does. Thereís just nothing to latch on to.

And so youíre left with the few people who hung on. The few people who essentially headcannoned everything*characters, lore, stories, etc. Iíve seen some decent-ish character fanfics over the years in this fandom, but none of the characters in those fics resemble anyone from the show, despite sharing the same names. I wrote a goddamn 40-episode epic painstakingly lorebulding the PRU up from the scraps theyíve given us into a coherent universe, but at the end of the day it resembles NOTHING from the show sans names.

I wrote lots of PR fanfic back in the day. Aside from it being terrible, they were all boring, and Iím pretty sure I never finished a single one. I did a few non-PR fanfics, they almost all got finished, even if they were terrible too. It was just *easier*.

Iíve completed two PR fanfics, both within the past five years. One doesnít count; it was a short Ďwhat ifí I did a few years back that was...okay. The other, Peacekeepers, is a 40-episode epic thatís longer than War and Peace. And despite Peacekeepers having been read by maybe eight people if Iím lucky and taking me three years (fourteen, if we count false starts and preproduction) to complete, itís easily the most rewarding PR project I ever did.

Why?

Peacekeepers was on my backburner for a decade and a half. It was there when I was in high school, went off with me to college, was there when I dropped out and had successive life crises, was there when I built everything back up. And despite multiple false starts (or maybe because of) those original characters (and themes) stuck with me. They were part of me, grew up with me. And so when I finally decided to write Peacekeepers, I was immediately hooked on my own project. It became a sort of self-therapy in a way. I was enthralled watching these characters evolve and complete their character arcs even if I was the one writing them.

Writing is hard, thatís not in dispute. But it shouldnít ONLY be hard. You should still get enjoyment out of it, you should still feel things. Writing shouldnít drain you just because itís hard work, but also because itís emotionally taxing. And if itís not, if for some reason you canít care then I would wonder if itís not the framework thatís the problem. PR gives you so many restrictions (as does any pre-existing property that you arenít building from the ground up), but in return gives you almost nothing to work *with*.

Third and final, Iíll certainly agree that the PR fandom isnít where you want to go if you want constructive feedback (for many reasons, Iíd wager), and that can certainly be a make or break issue.

Last edited by y3k; May 18th, 2018 at 05:14 PM.
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Old June 9th, 2018, 01:00 PM #23
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Finding time is difficult. I wrote mine in...what...2003?

Since that time I've gone to college, gotten married, worked, etc. And my schedule isn't consistent. So you've really got to work to carve out time to write.

But if you can get it done, it's worth the effort.

*ehem*

See you guys soon...
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Old June 24th, 2018, 03:37 PM #24
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I know it's been years since I touched my PR fanfic, but I still think about it from time to time. I just got sidetracked by doing more original stories and other series for shared universe websites. If it weren't for all my writing commitments in the current day (F4, New Warriors, Superman, Impulse, Iceman, TMNT, Supernatural, NeverEnding Story and trying to get my original novel length story complete), I'd probably have PR Season 4 mapped out and done by now.

I had considered bringing Supernatural: Wayward Sons here, but I'm just not sure if anyone here would be interested in the adventures of Adam, Ben and Samandriel with minimal input from Sam and Dean.
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Old June 28th, 2018, 12:59 AM #25
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There's a Power Rangers/Sliders crossover I've left on the shelf for over four years, and I'm thinking of getting back to it due to how massive Shattered Grid is. I started this story in 2015 way before SG was in the works, and I struggled to find a way to keep it going as I was largely writing it on the fly, but Shattered Grid might have just given me the opportunity to have it all make more sense.
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Old June 28th, 2018, 11:52 AM #26
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Cameron Samurai wrote: View Post

There's a Power Rangers/Sliders crossover I've left on the shelf for over four years, and I'm thinking of getting back to it due to how massive Shattered Grid is. I started this story in 2015 way before SG was in the works, and I struggled to find a way to keep it going as I was largely writing it on the fly, but Shattered Grid might have just given me the opportunity to have it all make more sense.
I love Sliders so much, I want this.

Though the level of love does depend on the group you are using, lol.
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Old June 29th, 2018, 07:22 AM #27
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I read y3k's post a few hours before I checked myself into hospital for a minor procedure, so it's been sloshing around in my head for a few days now.

I come at this as someone who doesn't consider himself a failed fanfic author. I've been writing my PR stories since I was 16 (and hopefully I've gotten better in the last twenty years). There was a gap of a few years where I tried to make it as a professional novelist and failed utterly, but then I missed all my characters so I went back to them and kept writing. I've got an archive of about thirty stories (http://www.fanfiction.net/~petersmith). Yeah, some of them are worse than the others (Ernie versus a haunted ice-cream machine seemed like a good idea at the time), but some of them are great, and I'm really proud of them. I can legitimately state that, without any hyperbole. I pour a lot of time and energy into my stories, and I'm proud of the end result.

If internet-archaeologists are trawling through fanfic.net in a century's time and they find, "Powerless" (the Zeo Rangers team up with a backpacking Dominic and Fran to fight a crazed elf prince at Christmas time) or "Identity" (Jason's POV story) or "The Impossible Boy" (a galaxy-spanning epic about some poor kid caught in the middle of a Ranger fight) or "Saikai" (MMPR/Samurai team-up) or "Omega" (Zedd's POV story) or "A Day in the Life" (Zordon's POV story. I got a bit carried away here) or "Heart and Mind" (Billy's POV story), I'm fine with that. These are my stories and this is my contribution to the world. I tend to think that people recognise when you put a lot of work into your stories. And sure, internet fandoms aren't where you go for proper critiques (but any writer worth his salt is his or her own harshest critic) ... but I tend to think that an engaging story stands by itself. That if you do your job, as the author, that will be evident in the end product.

Or maybe not. What the hell do I know? This business is very personal and subjective.

To use y3k's example ... the thing that I don't understand is when someone sits down to write a huge epic that's 400 chapters long, and they just start. I don't get that. Before you know it, you're 40 chapters in, the story's going nowhere and you (as the reader) can't even remember how the thing started. As the author, how do you build to a satisfying and dramatic conclusion, if you don't know what that conclusion is? If you have no idea where your story ends, how do you get there? I take the idea (of asking a reader to give me their time and attention) very seriously. And we can argue about artistic merits until the cows come home, but you've got to be able to give the reader what they're looking for, otherwise they're not going to come back.

I never ever publish a story until I've finished it, from start to finish (including months of drafts and editing), until it's printed out and sitting on my shelf. And I don't understand people who don't work like that. What happens if you have to rewrite? Oh, I need a new scene in chapter one, or this character needs more dialogue in chapter four, or the villains need a scene to flesh out their motivation in chapter seven ... but I'm already up to chapter ten. So I've screwed myself. How do you build the themes of the story, the emotional crux of the tale, if you don't know how to get to the pay-off?

It's why Ninja Steel is just a disappointing failure, as an exercise in story-telling. There's no human emotion anywhere in the story. There's nothing to connect to, nothing to identify with. The conflicts are contrived and stupid. The characters just recite words with nothing real behind them. You might as well just be watching white noise.

My first drafts are always rubbish. Very, very rarely will I get a scene right, right from the get-go (it does happen, but not often). Usually it takes me about two drafts (and a lot of time) to really refine the story, and I accept that as part of the deal.

If Timmy wants to write a huge universe-spanning saga that uses every Ranger ever, and he just sits down and starts typing one day (with the foggiest idea of the overall narrative)? I'm probably gonna say, pass. But if Timmy sits down, figures out the themes of the story, if he knows what he's trying to say (what message or moral he's trying to tell the reader), if he can tell me that the story is ten chapters long, if he jots down a rough draft or plan before he starts typing? Then, I'm paying attention. Because that shows me that Timmy's taking his responsibility as an author seriously, that he's thought about this, that he's considering the hurdles he has to face to get to, "The End".

And I don't think any of that is exclusive to niche fanfiction on the internet.

To me, that's all just good story-telling.

And in the end, isn't that why we're here? To tell a good story? It's why I do it. I want to pass on wisdom, I want to teach or empower people. Stories have power to them, and I think that's important. And being careful with your craft is the responsibility of a good craftsman (or woman).
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Old June 30th, 2018, 07:08 AM #28
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Claymore wrote: View Post

I love Sliders so much, I want this.

Though the level of love does depend on the group you are using, lol.
Well the group in the story was RPM, so I think it'd be pretty well received.
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Old June 30th, 2018, 11:22 AM #29
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I always feel a tinge of guilt when I start a story and I don't finish it. The original Power Rangers Saga storyline was one I loved but eventually ran out of steam when I lost alot of my work due to a computer crash. Even recovery efforts were fruitless. Now, with my Lionsgate movie prequel, it became harder and harder to really find the motivations of the characters to fall into play with each other (namely Rita and Goldar) and then launching my own clothing brand has literally taken every free second of my day. I love to write and I love to have those moments where it clicks and you get this amazing visual and then to share it with someone who is equally blown away, its just magical. I miss it and I have the intention to return to the story and finish it, but finding the time and the inspiration it deserves ... that's a whole other dilemma.
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Old August 25th, 2018, 09:10 AM #30
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I just wanted to pop into this thread and thank everyone for their input. It was genuinely a fascinating read.

(Sorry for the slight necro)
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Old August 25th, 2018, 09:31 AM #31
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y3k wrote: View Post

<insert favorite anime here> all have a ton of one-shots or smaller series because the show doesnít revolve around disposable mega-arcs.
. . .
We LOVE PR lore, but thatís really just the headcanon weíve made for it.
. . .
Third and final, Iíll certainly agree that the PR fandom isnít where you want to go if you want constructive feedback (for many reasons, Iíd wager), and that can certainly be a make or break issue.
Thank you for saying things I've always thought, but never fully articulated.

Final point is huge. For all the half-projects, I can only imagine how many never start because of the framework of this fandom (and the medium).
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Old August 27th, 2018, 05:34 PM #32
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At some point I think I should get back to my Morphinverse stories either to at least finish up my versions of Seasons 2-In Space but I've also been busy trying to come up with ideas for Creepypastas and original stories.
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Old August 29th, 2018, 10:26 PM #33
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Ravie wrote: View Post

My reasons for finishing - I'm invested in the story, the characters, even the villains. With Alpha it was a rewrite of an rp that I needed to complete. With Samurai Clash, it was my first, and I loved everyone so much that I had to make it to the end.

Reasons for not finishing - lack of time, chronic writer's block, too many new ideas when I haven't even finished the old one, "oh I'll circle back eventually", lack of feedback. That last one is a doozy. I was mainly doing SC and Alpha in a bubble. They were getting done regardless, but other things that I'm struggling to keep my attention on, someone besides my friend Sam, letting know that they're interested and invested in the characters and the stories would go a long way to encourage me to keep at a particular story.
That has been the story of my PR fics... I have some ideas, but just can't get the time.

Real life and other projects are in the way.
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Old September 11th, 2018, 09:48 PM #34
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Having posted an intro and three chapters of "Dogfights," I have to admit that something DragonBuckler7 said is hitting me...

Feedback is in very short supply - and it leaves me feeling lost a little bit.

Have I left gaps?
Do people like what I'm doing?

I just don't know, and it can be discouraging.
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Old September 12th, 2018, 09:09 AM #35
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fb111a wrote: View Post

Having posted an intro and three chapters of "Dogfights," I have to admit that something DragonBuckler7 said is hitting me...

Feedback is in very short supply - and it leaves me feeling lost a little bit.

Have I left gaps?
Do people like what I'm doing?

I just don't know, and it can be discouraging.
Have you only posted here?

Powerless is on Fanfiction.net, and while my heart belongs to RangerBoard, I've found it to be a great supplement.
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Old September 12th, 2018, 09:32 AM #36
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TheOneRJS200 wrote: View Post

Have you only posted here?

Powerless is on Fanfiction.net, and while my heart belongs to RangerBoard, I've found it to be a great supplement.
The current version of Dogfights is only here...

There is an older draft at Fanfiction.net.
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Old September 13th, 2018, 02:24 AM #37
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I find I get more feedback here for my fics than on FF.Net, it's weird because people tend to favourite a lot of my stories, but leave very little reviews.
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Old September 13th, 2018, 03:41 PM #38
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I've just tried to get as many eyes on my fic in as many places as possible. I mean, people can't review it if they don't see it, right? I made a Twitter for Powerless, which has born a little fruit.

What kinda sucks is that there's no one place to go exclusively for PR fics anymore, i.e. the Fic Shoppe.

Makes you wonder...
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Old September 14th, 2018, 01:10 AM #39
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TheOneRJS200 wrote: View Post

I've just tried to get as many eyes on my fic in as many places as possible. I mean, people can't review it if they don't see it, right? I made a Twitter for Powerless, which has born a little fruit.

What kinda sucks is that there's no one place to go exclusively for PR fics anymore, i.e. the Fic Shoppe.

Makes you wonder...
You can always try the "Fanfic Recs" page for PR fiction over on TVTropes. As a matter of fact, "Forever Red: The Novel" is one of the fics already listed there

https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.p...s/PowerRangers
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Old September 14th, 2018, 10:45 AM #40
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TheOneRJS200 wrote: View Post

What kinda sucks is that there's no one place to go exclusively for PR fics anymore, i.e. the Fic Shoppe.

Makes you wonder...
Seriously, why isn't this a thing? Between fiction and art there needs to be a Ranger Fan Archive.

Someone get to it.

fb111a it is difficult. Your best bet here on the board is to review other people's fics in the hope that they will return the favour and follow your work. FF.Net is the bigger alternative (but you mentioned you're already there).
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