Jul. 28th, 2010

Curiosity

Jul. 28th, 2010 11:35 pm
featherxquill: (Default)
No meme today. It's late and the question requires more thought than I have right now.

But, curiosity. I mentioned a few days ago when talking about favourite pairings that mostly my early fics make me cringe a little bit now, because I was seventeen/eighteen when I wrote them and I know that my writing style and understanding of characters have matured and improved since then. This is a trend I have noticed for some time now. I mean, I have been writing since I can remember, but I wrote more than one novel length story when I was in high school (before I discovered fanfiction, thankfully, because I have no doubt I would have written horrible Mary Sues and posted them on ff.net if I had known about it back then), and by the time I was seventeen/eighteen, they made me cringe. Now, I look back, and it's the fic I wrote then that causes that reaction. To some extent, I feel that way about some of the later ones in a sort of creeping way - if I go back and look at them, some stories that I reread last year and still thought were good, I might see more flaws in the next, and so on. It tends to follow a general pattern of the older they are, the more likely I am to hate them a little bit on reread. It's getting less - I mean, I am less inclined to think GAH THIS IS TERRIBLE and more 'this part is badly written, this character is OOC, if I wrote this again now I would change x' with old fic, say, than with the godawful novel-length detective fiction I wrote in high school, but it's still present.

Obviously, all writers are evolving and changing and (hopefully!) improving with each new thing they write, but I'm curious... is this an age thing? I know quite a few of my flisties are a tiny bit older than me, and I have wondered before whether there is a point at which maturity... plateaus, I suppose, to a degree where you can look at something you wrote a number of years ago and not think it is dreadfully immature writing? I mean, obviously we're always going to see the flaws in our own work, but is there a point at which it becomes less OMG HATE KILL IT WITH FIRE and more accepting?

Just to make it clear, this is really really not me wanting everyone to tell me how awesome I am and have been forever, or anything. I put effort into my writing and my stories and I know that yes, I have written things people enjoy and I have written things I am quite proud of, even some time on. But there are also things that I go back and look at and hate with the firey passion of a thousand burning suns, and I am really curious as to whether writers generally have that experience whatever their age, or if it... mellows, I guess.

(For the record, I don't generally take down my stories just because I dislike them/am embarrassed by them. For one, it's a little bit of 'if I started, where would I stop?' thing, because if you start removing things you don't like a lot, and then things you don't like a little bit, forever, what ends up being left? For another, I don't know which stories there are out there that people might still really like that I am less impressed with, and I know how much I hate it when I try to read something I have loved and it has been deleted by its author (I still sometimes get reviews on Menage-a-Trios on SH, and 'favourite story' adds for 'Thankyou' on ff.net, so I guess there is still an audience somewhere). I also kind of like the journey, you know? This is me, and yes, I have written fic that was a bit crap, but I'd rather leave myself visibly whole, warts and all, rather than removing anything and everything that might make me look bad. That said, I did remove one story from ff.net because I couldn't stand the sight of it, and didn't do much to save any of the contents of my geocities websites. I think every author is within their right to take something down, especially if they have written something in the past that they now find problematic on grounds of genderfail, racefail, somethingelsefail, or just because they want to. I just personally choose not to, as a general rule).

_

On a completely different note, [livejournal.com profile] minervas_eule posted a video earlier today in which Dumbledore's 'dirty secret' was that he hates his beard, and now I would like to give away a large, floppy eared plot bunny to any good home that might like it: Dumbledore didn't die, you see, he just faked his own death, and then he shaved, and now no one recognises him! Perhaps Snape was in cahoots, and he isn't dead either, and they went of somewhere to be Snapledore-y forever (hey, a pairing I forgot to mention kind of loving!). And maybe Dumbles donated his beard hair to Voldemort, because of his 'dirty secret', and everyone lived happily ever after!

-

Wow, that got longer than probably the meme answer would have been, and now I have to be up in six hours, yet again. Goodnight!

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