Diseases of the FanFic Author

by Hanako

Modifications beyond Reboot to include fanfic in general, by Ocean Elf

Article: Self Diagnosis!

Created out of a loving and compassionate desire to help fan fiction authors, here is a guide to the pathology behind some of the most annoying fanfic and roleplay out there. Do you recognize the symptoms of affliction in your work or in the work of a friend?

Seek treatment!

Fixatus Canonica

Affects: Women in their mid-teens and older.

An established character in a series (let's call him/her X), is your favourite character. Ordinarily, this wouldn't be a serious problem except you secretly feel insecure about X's position relative to all the other characters and thus feel a deep-rooted need for X to show up everybody else.

Naturally, in order to do this, you have to write other characters out of character so that X can emerge as 'morally superior / smarter / tougher'. The victim of Fixatus Canonica is usually Y. Even though all the evidence in the series shows that not only can Y hold their own against trouble-maker Z, but that they can actually work well together despite initial friction, you decide that dumbing-down Y will result in boosting-up X. Usually you claim X has some sort of special hold on W that Y can't ever understand or will only resent.

If a character has been significantly modified from its original format, expressly for the purposes of outdoing other cast members, such a story can be considered Fixatus Canonica.

Treatment for this condition involves the patient taking time away from writing to ask some difficult questions: Am I making V unreasonable just so that Y will look righteous? Am I giving S super powers because I secretly fear he's inferior to W? Is T's meteoric rise just a little bit silly?

Acute Wannabe Syndrome (Orianna CanoMushitis)

Affects: Girls in their pre-teens to early teens.

You think S and A are a really cute couple. He's so sexy and she's so ... Well, she's with the sexy guy. You'd like nothing more than to have such a sexy guy of your own, but since you are probably only 12 and rather introverted, your chances are slim. This is when this particular disease strikes -- Allowing afflicted young girls to live vicariously through A in the form of sappy fan fiction. Elements of this fan fiction include the following themes: S being forced to demonstrate how much he loves A (or *you*), A (this is *you*, actually) telling S how much she really, really, really loves him over and over and over, something tragic happening to A forcing S to realize how much he loves her (*you*), everybody else in your fanfic giving the happy couple a hard time, forcing both of them to realize they can only count on each other.

Acute Wannabe Syndrome, if untreated, can develop into fics such as Time Enough For Love and Kaleidoscope.

Extreme caution is necessary when dealing with AWS patients -- Discussion concerning their condition will result in melodramatic tears, profanity, and the hurling of pokemon figures.

Ocean Elf: *Gasp* I have some pokemon figures. *Shock-horror* I actually have something in common with an AWS patient? Oh, no!

Article: Male Pattern Heroism (Garitis Stupendigo)

Affects: Boys mid to late teens & first year Comp.Sci majors.

If you suspect you might suffer from this disorder, put down your Beast Wars toys and take a good hard look at your fan fiction.

Does your hero behave exactly opposite to your day-to-day life? That is, does he wear a lot of black leather, shoulder menacing weaponry, never make mistakes, turn on all the chicks?

Mary Sue Syndrome

Affects: All walks of life.

A very infamous disease, although one responsible for ruining lives! Key indicators of this disease are all-powerful characters engaging in "wish-fulfillment" exercises at the discretion of an author who imagines him or herself actually in the fanfic for the purpose of getting with a series character. MSS differs only slightly from its brother syndrome "Male Pattern Heroism", in that the testosterone level is greatly reduced, and the spelling and grammar is generally of a higher quality.

MSS manifests itself in two ways. It is either a case of Orianna Canomushitis that was never treated or grown out of, or else it is late onset. There is no conclusive theories for the latter to occur.

Treatment includes taking the Mary Sue Test which is also needed for treating Garitis Stupendigo and Orianna Canomushitis. But it is only a treatment, not a cure, and the success rate of this procedure is low.

Mary Sue Syndrome can only be cured by recognition of the condition. In many cases, even this is not enough to curb the ravages of the disease, and MSS can evolve into a permanently disabling disorder.

[There is, or used to be, a group of plucky individuals who refuse to conform to societal norms and recognize the seriousness of their disease. The Mary Sue Appreciation Society as run by veteran Mary Sue, Jo Ann Montgomery, states most alarmingly: "Self-inserted characters --the females of which are called "Mary Sues"-- are being discrimated against. Self-inserted characters are avatars created by authors to represent the authors in fanfic stories.What's wrong with this, I ask? What's wrong with fantasizing about your favorite characters, about being their lovers, their mates?" I am torn between horror and admiration ... Naw, you guessed it, I'm horrified.


Mary Sue Page

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