Tuesday, March 6, 2007

If you're looking for information on my series, go below and look at MY 'VERSE. Otherwise, now read on ...

I was PM'd a while back, asking if I thought my new character of Freya was a 'Mary Sue'. Not knowing the phrase (I'm English, although I'm not sure that's an excuse!) I did a little research, and have lately seen a fair amount of traffic on the threads about this too.

And this is the result. Honestly, I don't think you can write a pleasant (as in not a villain) original character and not have some aspects of that character relate to being a 'Mary Sue'. If you look at great literature (and I am not suggesting, even in my wildest, alcohol-induced moments - if I drank - that I write great literature!) all the great female characters from Jane Eyre to Bridget Jones have aspects that the author either likes in themselves, or wishes they have. It goes just the same for the male characters, too.

Does Freya have characteristics that I admire? Of course. Do I want to go through what I've put her through to get them? Hell, no!

I've tried to write the canon characters as we've seen them, keeping to the actors' interpretations, their style of speaking, moving, the descriptions of their mannerisms, their clothes ... but beyond the BDM is all my own. And I'm proud of it.

Is Freya a 'Mary Sue'? I don't know. And if she is, is that a bad thing? People have been commenting in the threads that they won't read fanfic if there is an OC, or what they consider to be an MS. Come on guys, you could be missing some great stuff out there! At least try it out!

Okay ... that's my rant done.

For the rest of you who do read, apparently enjoy and comment, thank you very much. I need it like Serenity needs Kaylee.


Saturday, November 14, 2009 4:37 PM


I like your 'verse, about the only thing that puts me off a bit (which I just skim over) is the boring baby/ kids stuff. I don't want to picture Mal as a daddy :( so I simply ignore it.

I don't have any problems with the Mary Sue aspect though and am happy with just about any pairing except slash, it just gets boring.

I love angst fics, deep and emotional not dull boring happy families but we all have to write what excites us so please don't stop.

Thursday, March 8, 2007 3:32 AM


I've never written a fic but I read ALOT, so I try not to judge but keep an open mind. I enjoy your writing very much because you are a wonderful writer and work very hard at your craft, and remain faithful and consistent to your characters. I agree with Mal4prez in that I prefer stories that revolve around Mal and his struggles with the lost parts of himself. That was THE draw for me to the show. And as Joss set up the storyline, those missing parts are the other 8 characters. I love how brilliantly SpaceAnJL wove in her OC as not quite a background character, but more as a foil for the main characters to act off of. Illargia is there, but not as the pivot point to the story, and the other main characters are always mentioned. And her Mal/River is completely plausible to me. Is Freya a MS? Probably to most people she is. Will that stop me from enjoying your writing? No, I refuse to become that judgemental on another person's sincere effort. Do I enjoy your stories that focused more on the original crew? Yes. The original crew are the ones Joss made me fall in love with and I can see in my head while I read. We're all wanting to hold onto the original, and any manifestation away from Joss's work dilutes the overall integrity of the 'verse as Joss made it. And since we have so little of the original, it's very precious. So by reinforcing canon, we strengthen Joss's view until more can be made. Do I enjoy reading about Freya? Yes. Do I enjoy reading about Mal, Zoe et al more? Yes. That's the nature of fandom. Will I continue to read your work? Absolutely, you're very gifted in your work - please continue writing and I'll keep commenting.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007 4:55 PM


There I said it.

I like fanfics that shine a unique perspective on, or adhere to the vision of the original.

I didn't read freya. It doesn't appeal to me, but that being said, it does appeal to others who love to read it. So keep on producing! Those that don't like it can choose not to read it.

Those that say "Nay" should just seek other stories they do like, that's what I do.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007 12:17 PM


I may make myself unpopular, but I'll throw in my hat...

First - I must say, write what you write! Obviously, lots of folks love your stories and you do too, and that's what fic is about. So, I'll offer my opinions and criticisms, but please don't think I'm telling you to change what you're doing wtih Freya.

But you're asking about the mary sue-ness of Freya, and here's my .02. (Besides - you do write well, and if you ever decide to start up a new Jane0904-fic-verse, I wouldn't mind if it... you know... for lack of a better way of saying it... fit my own twisted tastes more. )

I came into your fic somewhere near the beginning, and read a few chapters, but wasn't really drawn in. Largely because of Freya. Whether she's an MS or not I can't argue, because I didn't read enough, but in the chapters I read I found her quite unsatisfying.

For me, the center of Firefly is Mal, his loss of faith, and his struggle to keep his humanity even though he's been torn up by life. The people on his ship are helping him do that in many ways. For example - Zoe's his tie to the war, River's the pull that gets him back into the fight, and maybe Kaylee is what he used to be, open and trusting and somewhat naive.

But in your fic, the rest of the canon crew all kind of disappear, and it largely becomes the Mal/Freya show. In what I read, Mal was, essentially, being saved by this OC. (I have nothing against OC's. I've written a few myself, even spending whole chapters on them, much to the chagrin of some of my readers LOL!) So Mal ended up completely in love and beholden to a woman who single handedly was his salvation. Pretty much.

Speaking for me only, I'm not interested in that. I believe he has to save himself with what he has, and I don't think a single love affair is going to do it for him. Not with Inara or any other canon character, and certainly not with someone who shows up seeming perfectly constructed to bond with and take care of him. Besides, the issues he has are based on things that interest me - the evils of big government and corporations, for example, and the way they trod on the little guy. Romance fics (and I'm not just talking about you here) tend to skip right past anything to do with this.

Anyway, even if Freya was the most interesting, complex character ever, I have a hard time with a story that completely revolves around a romantic relationship which fixes Mal. I think Joss's verse is more complex than that.

Again - this is just my taste! But, if others feel like I do, it may explain why they are turned off by Freya, even if she is complex and well developed as a character and not so much a Mary-Sue.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007 9:05 AM


You don't give yourself enough credit, Jane! You write brilliant stuff that is highly plausible and true to both the established characters and the new ones you have created to aid in your storytelling.

Freya seems a Mary-Sue at first because she seems the perfect match for Mal without first-glance flaws: attractive, independent, former Browncoat, excellent fighter, compassionate, intelligent...need I go on? But you give her all kinds of depth and flaws and good character defining points that take her above some author avatar that used to fulfill fantasies:D

Some people like their boxes and labels, unfortunately. Maybe I'm a rare duck in that I will take unconventional pairings on the same fervent footing as canon pair-ups, as long as effort it put in to explore the origins and evolution of the hookup. Mal's decision to have something with Freya is a wonderful example because you showed both their relationship background as one night stand lovers and then friends before having them slowly drift together and develop something powerful. Now, would I have preferred a different pairing for Mal in the beginning? Yes, I love Mal/Inara because of all the beautiful tension and possibility; however, you took a highly plausible path of having the two of them (or at least Mal;D) recognize that much as they have feelings for one another, that a relationship wouldn't work because of their staunch positions on their respective jobs and their personal philosophies.


Wednesday, March 7, 2007 4:52 AM


Never could see River in bed with Jayne. He's too soft and she'd make him sad

Tuesday, March 6, 2007 11:18 PM


I feel the same way about Ilargia. Though I scored frighteningly high on the MS-meter. I think if you write, and invest a lot of time and emotion in a character, you need a good degree of empathy.

I, on the other hand, do drink, and do consider that I write bloody well, and I'm getting sick of the folks out there who won't see past the OC label to question why certain characters need to be. I'm presently getting a clobbering for daring to suggest that River might actually fancy Mal (because, er, hello, very sexy man) and this is from folks who will willingly sling her into bed with Jayne!

Basically, the 'Verse is full of trolls and morons, and we must navigate between 'em to find the discerning public who rate our stuff. :)


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