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February 15, 2013
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Slinging Pens with =SingingFlames

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 2:59 PM
Today we're sitting down with fanfiction author and awesome deviant :iconsingingflames: (because what weirdo websurfs standing up?). Her entry into the Crossovers Contest came in first place and she is quickly making a name for herself in the deviantART community as a whole.
TF: Entomophobia - Halloween TradeTitle: Entomophobia
Pairings: None
Rating: PG
Warnings: Disturbing imagery
Author's Note: This is my submission for the TF-SecretSanta Halloween Trade for xDeadlyxxxDesirex. This is a Halloween story, so I tried for scary. It's not as lighthearted as my normal fics, although it has its humorous moments (I couldn't help myself). I pulled on two personal fears of mine when I wrote this, to try and add some real creepiness to it. I hope it works. Time conversions: Klik 1.2 minutes, Nanoklik approximately 1 second. Comm transmissions are marked with colons – ::like this.::
The Rust Sea spread across Cybertron's equator, an immense red scar across its surface. Erratic pillars twisted into the sky. Corrosive gasses bled from the ground, slowly eating the land away, turning everything to an endless expanse of rust. Across the ground, miniature hills rose and fell, forming 'waves' that traveled as far as the optic could see.
Numerous Cybertronian artists tried to duplicate the Rust Sea in
Transformers - All for One: WarTitle: All for One – War
Pairings: None
Rating: G
Warnings: None (It is long)
Author's Note: This is a standalone story (like the previous chapters). Skywarp plans vengeance against two trouble-making brothers. Time conversions – Klik: approx. 1 min, Joor: 6 hours, Deca-cycle: approx. 3 weeks, Vorn: 83 years. Talking through comm channels is shown, ::like this.::
"This is war!" Skywarp said in a harsh whisper.
Thundercracker paused, then glanced over his station controls. With a few flicks of switches, he set the bridge computers to inform him of any status changes. Satisfied the automatic alerts were in place, he turned to face his wing mate. Not speaking, he crossed his arms and leaned back in his seat. And stared.
The purple and black Seeker stared back. After a few moments, Skywarp burst out, still whispering, "What?"
"One: we've been fighting for how many tens of thousands of vorns, and you just now realized we're at war? And two: we're on bridge duty. This is m
A Conversation and a CorpseTitle: A Conversation and a Corpse
Universes (Crossover): Batman and Neil Gaiman's Sandman
Pairings: None
Rating: PG (to be safe)
Warnings: Angst, a corpse
Author's Note: Batman's natural desire to help has unforeseen consequences. This is my entry for the Crossover Contest, and my first crossover.
The copse lay amidst the alley clutter, unmoving, while the first spots of rain splattered on his Armani suit. The night buried him in shadows, the distant streetlights barely illuminating him. Thin rivulets of blood, black in the weak light, pasted down a few graying tufts of hair. His head bent backwards at an angle no living person could achieve. Knowing the futility of it, Batman still reached over and checked for a pulse.  
Looking at the dead never got any easier. It was ugly, no matter how peaceful the passing may have been. Yet still, Batman crouched besides the unmoving form, gently closing the man's eyes. The rain pattered against his hood and cape while he stood his silent vi


What are your favorite fandoms to write for?

I love writing for Transformers. Almost all of my fan fictions are set in the Transformers universe. I also truly enjoyed my foray into the Batman fandom.

What is it about these fandoms that inspires you? I'm a sucker for a well-defined and thought out antagonist. Give me interesting bad guys, and I'm sold. Both of those fandoms have intriguing antagonists. I love exploring their motivations and how they got where they are. In almost all of the Transformers continuities, my favorite characters have been amongst the Decepticons (the antagonists, for those unfamiliar with the fandom). And I've always believed that Batman has some of the best villains I've ever encountered. Their backstories make us sympathize with them. We can understand them, and part of us wishes that things worked out for them (okay, perhaps not when they're trying to blow up Gotham, but you get my meaning).

By no means does this mean I don't like the two series' protagonists. It's hard not to feel inspired by them. But the classic "good guy" is more familiar territory for most people. We already know their motivations, and we're relatively sure they will conquer any moral and/or physical obstacles they face (maybe not how they'll do it, but that's why we watch/read about them). They may falter, suffer and occasionally die (and possibly come back - yes, I'm looking at you Optimus Prime, in pretty much every Transformers continuity). But we know what to expect.

With antagonists, they play by different rules. And sometimes cheat.

What fandom would you like to write for but haven't yet, and why?

Hmm, that's a tough one. I'm a fan of so many. But I'll narrow it down to two: Star Wars and Star Trek. As for why, I'll also give you two reasons: I am a perfectionist, and I am horrible at techno-babble. If I write something, I want my fic to do justice to the original work(s). Both of those franchises have so much history and technology to draw from. I research all my stories, unless it's something I know backwards, forwards, and the shoe size of. I'd be worried about overlooking something obvious, or trying to include some bit of technology, misunderstanding it and then using it wrong.

What authors have had the most influence over your own writing style?

Neil Gaiman has had an impact on how I approach my story ideas. I once read an interview where he stated that he tried to never write anything similar to his previous works. I try to always find new situations to explore, new conflicts. I never want to get repetitive. If I see that I've mainly used Characters A and B for the last couple fics, but Character C hasn't done much, I'll be sure that the next story focuses on him or her.

Another author I greatly admire is Stephen King. The man is a master at details and characterization. I've often attempted to describe my cast through their actions, not by actually stating their traits, as Mr. King does so well.

What is your favorite thing about the deviantART fanfic community?

We really are a community. Everyone is so supportive and helpful. I have made several friends with my fellow fanfic writers and readers. deviantART is my social network.

Give me a shoutout to two deviants who have given you some good advice!

Just two? There's so many. All my commenters are helpful. I read every comment I receive, and they help shape my writing, show me what details people pick up on and what they enjoy. Decadent-Depraved has been one of my most supportive readers. Whenever I'm feeling down or lose confidence in my work, he's always been there to buoy me up. I can't express how much I appreciate his encouragement. Another wonderful deviant is PaDiYaFLAME. She has been commenting on my fanfics since I first posted them, providing constant support.

Go back and find the first story you posted on dA, fanfic or original, and post the thumb here. Now tell us about a flaw in past-you's writing style that present-you no longer has!

Transformers: Subterfuge Ch 1NOTE: This is based on the movie-verse continuity.This fic occurs about a year after Revenge of the Fallen. Soundwave is still in orbit, and Laserbeak is the only Transformer from DOTM who makes an appearance in this. Rated G
Chapter One
Truly, the indigenous lifeforms of this planet were convoluted, Starscream mused. Case in point, he considered the name they bestowed to the landmass he flew over. More than 75% of the surface was covered in ice, yet the fleshings called this place 'Greenland.' In fact, little green existed anywhere here. The  Decepticon idly scanned for the color as he patrolled, compiling a ratio of occurrence between green and other colors present to pass his time. The results did not impress him.
As he circled toward the west coast, he strayed within a few miles of one of the humans scientific stations. The weather was clear – as it had been on Starscream's other flybys – and he wondered if the 'observation outpost' would 'observe' him. H

This fic has a special place in my heart. It's the first fan fiction I ever wrote, and it got me back into writing after almost a decade away from a keyboard. Looking back, I can see that it's rough. I was trying to sound "techy," as it's told mainly from a Transformer's POV. However, it comes off as too wordy and unnatural. I admit I'm horrible at judging the quality of my own work, but I believe (hope) I've improved my literary voice since then.

How about some goals you have, writing-wise?

Simply put, to improve my skill. I see so many outstanding authors online and in print, and I hope to write at that level some day. I have several areas in my writing that I know could do better, so I constantly try to develop those.

A long time goal I've had since I first buried my nose in a book is to be published (in a physical format). I'm currently working on a short story that I want to submit to some literary magazines. I would also love to actually finish my novel, regardless of whether anyone else will ever read it. Just the sense of accomplishment from that feat would be a wondrous.

Anything else you'd like to say in conclusion, some words of wisdom or advice for your fellow writers?

It's hardly original advice, but truly the best thing a writer can do is read. And then read some more. Really see the words, and the structure. Pay attention to how grammar and punctuation work. You can study all the "How To" books out there, but actually seeing the language in action is the best way to learn. You'll get a feeling for how grammar works, and can catch mistakes before making them.

This advice also applies to writing dialogue, plot devices, pacing, and any aspect of writing. Look at the stories you read, take it apart and see what works for you, what didn't and why. Why did that bit of dialogue seem so natural? Why did that scene drag? Nothing can teach you these things like reading will.

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:iconitti:
Itti Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
One of your questions, Give me a shoutout to two deviants who have given you some good advice!, is in normal font and not a heading.

At least, I assume it's meant to be a heading rather than =SingingFlames talking to herself...
Reply
:iconjzlobo:
JZLobo Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Fixed. Thanks for catching that!
Reply
:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
:love:
Reply
:iconsingingflames:
SingingFlames Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
:dalove:
Reply
:iconexillior:
Exillior Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I read this as "slinging penis with =SingingFlames". :noes:
Reply
:iconitti:
Itti Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I knew I wouldn't be the only one :lol:
Reply
:iconexillior:
Exillior Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Life is more fun the way we see it. :nod: :highfive:
Reply
:iconsingingflames:
SingingFlames Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Oh my ... :O

:giggle:
Reply
:iconexillior:
Exillior Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
It has nothing to do with your name and everything to do with too many on-call shifts...
Reply
:iconsingingflames:
SingingFlames Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
LOL, I understand. =P
Reply
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