It might surprise you to hear that I’ve never been much for comedy. I’m pretty good at injecting humor into a dramatic story, but straight up comedy isn’t my thing. I enjoy satire and stand-up comedy, but the majority of “comedy” entertainment usually makes me want to strangle people. No one was more surprised than I was when Vader’s Cat was so well-received. I wondered if I might have found a new calling. So, I tried again.
My second attempt at comedic fanfic was a nonsensical crossover between Star Wars and ThunderCats. (For anyone not familiar with TCats, it was an 80s cartoon featuring a race of cat-people.) One of the characters, Jaga, was pretty much an animated version of Obi-Wan Kenobi with feline facial features.
My premise was that Jaga and Obi-Wan met in some plane of existence where most beings are blue, glowy ghosts. It was entirely tongue in cheek. There was even a drinking establishment called The Blue Glowies Bar. This time, I planned for a series. I had a whole list of wacky adventures and other dead characters for Jaga and Kenobi to interact with. I was ready and raring to go.
And the whole thing bombed.
I got a grand total of five comments and relatively few views. One person who commented was a regular reader of my other SW fanfic and just asked what ThunderCats was. It never occurred to me that many fanfic readers wouldn’t know what a ThunderCat was or that Jaga’s character was inspired by Obi-Wan.
Another person appears to have missed the memo that the story was a comedy and left this:
There was a Thundercats episode set in the astral world. In the astral world Jaga looked like he did in life. Lion-o was Jaga’s charge, but he wasn’t a student.
Other comments were more supportive and asked for the story to continue, but ultimately I decided that there wasn’t enough interest to warrant the effort.
I’m still glad I published Ghost Story. It helped me realize that I write fanfiction for other people, not myself. I write it because I want to share it with other fans. I want to give them enjoyment. That’s not really true with my original fiction, where I write primarily because I have a story to tell and I don’t care much if anyone else appreciates it. (Except of course that if I publish it, I would like to get paid, so I’m kind of hoping enough people will like it.) Whenever anyone asks me why I write fanfiction now, I tell them, among other things, “Because someone else will be happy I wrote it.”
Rose B. Fischer is speculative fiction author and creative entrepreneur. Her current project is The Foxes of Synn, a low-tech science fantasy serial. Click here for more information. She is a survivor of domestic violence who lives with multiple disabilities. In the early 2000s, she became homeless after leaving her abusive spouse. She later entered a transitional housing program while attending college. These experiences inspired her to begin writing non-fiction, and have had lasting impacts on her approach to fiction writing. She publishes science fiction, science fantasy, horror, and biographical essays. On her website, she writes about the intersection of storytelling, social responsibility, art, and pop culture in the internet age. She also offers custom designs and templates for indie authors, musicians, and other muse-herders. Her website, rosebfischer.com, features a growing collection of free and pay to use stock art, as well as tutorials and many other features for writers, artists, readers, and viewers.