Tag Archives: Rose B. Fischer

#Sci-Fi Women Interviews: The 2015 Collection is available for free download!

My cover designer friend Jennifer A. Miller is awesome! She finished the cover for the free eBook Sci-Fi Women Interviews: The 2015 Collection, tonight! It means the book is now available for (permanent) free download on Smashwords as a celebration of International Women’s Day. I will set up the title’s Goodreads page tomorrow.

Look at that stunning cover!

Sci-Fi Women 2015 - by Jennifer Miller

Cover designed by Jennifer A. Miller.

The eBook features all 2015 interviews, with the following guests:

  • Johnamarie Macias
  • Yolanda I. Washington
  • Saf Davidson
  • Neelu Raut
  • Natalie McKay
  • Tricia Barr
  • Rose B. Fischer
  • Jo Robinson
  • Patty Hammond
  • Laura M. Crawford

Happy International Women’s Day!

Happy International Women’s Day and Book Release Delay

Happy International Women’s Day!

I was planning to release Sci-Fi Women Interview: The2015  Collection today to celebrate it, but due to design delays, the free eBook gathering all 2015 interviews for the monthly feature is postponed until later this month. I will share details as soon as I have some, and I know that it will be worth the wait!

In the meantime, feel free to check the first amazing guest ladies I had since January 2016: Robin Rivera and Heather Jackson, and Jennifer A. Miller. You might also want to check out Rose B. Fischer’s blog series Fangirl: Doing’ It For Herself – A Writing Journey.

I am grateful for all the amazing women I have got to interact with on the blogging scene and I am looking forward to all the future collaboration there is in store for us!

Delenn

Delenn from Babylon 5.

Fangirl: Doin It for Herself – A Writing Journey by Rose B. Fischer

Fangirl title

Designed by Rose B. Fischer.

Once again, it’s time to wrap up my run here on Science Fiction, Transmedia, and Fandom. Thanks for hanging out and joining in the discussion.   I want to close by making it clear that I strongly believe that authors should be able to maintain control of their work and make a living from it. If I spend years crafting a world, characters, plot, and work on the narrative to the best of my ability, all for someone else’s entertainment, I have the right to monetize it.  No one else should be able to profit from it at my expense.  Conversely, I should not be able to profit from or because of someone else’s creative effort.  Beyond that, I have to acknowledge that I did not come up with my ideas in a vacuum.

I also believe that stories don’t really “belong” to anyone. Ideas don’t “belong” to me; concepts and questions don’t “belong” to  me.  Only their expression does, and even then I sometimes wonder if I can really own an intangible thing that’s going to be reinterpreted every time someone reads it. The questions of ownership and profit are at the heart of every fanfiction debate I’ve ever heard.  Here’s my take:

Early on in this series, I talked about a children’s story I wrote which was based on the long-running Berenstain Bears media franchise. The Berenstain Bears have books, toys, computer games, TV shows, and if I’m not mistaken there were DVD movies. It’s a very profitable franchise.  My parents didn’t have a lot of money. My sister and I both liked the Bears, but our folks couldn’t afford any of that stuff. The TV show was free, and once a year on Christmas we probably got a few picture books.  Yet, because I could make up stories about the Bears and learned to write some of them down, we had hours and hours of enjoyment that we probably wouldn’t have gotten from reading the same handful of picture books for years. That meant the Berenstain Bears stayed a presence in our lives, and they stayed on our parents’ radar when the time came to buy Christmas presents or at any other time they might’ve had cash.  If I hadn’t been writing those stories, my sister and I would probably have moved on to something more current.  So, as far as I’m concerned, fanfiction represents a real potential for to generate revenue at exactly zero cost to the author or the publishing house.  I don’t see how that’s a problem.  By discussing the ways in which my own series has been influenced by other media properties,I’m also encouraging folks who may not otherwise be interested in those properties to go and check them out.  Again, free advertising.  I don’t see how the established product loses out.

***

Rose B. Fischer is an avid fan of foxes, Stargate: SG-1, and Star Trek.  She would rather be on the Enterprise right now. Since she can’t be a Starfleet Officer, she became a speculative fiction author whose stories feature women who defy cultural stereotypes.In her fictional worlds, gender is often fluid, sexuality exists on a spectrum, and “disability” does not define an individual.  She publishes science fiction, science fantasy, horror, and biographical essays. To find out more, visit her website or her Amazon Author page.

 

Fangirl: Doin It for Herself – A Writing Journey by Rose B. Fischer

Fangirl title

Designed by Rose B. Fischer.

In my last few posts, I’ve been talking about the connection between my original science fantasy serial, The Foxes of Synn, and Masters of the Universe/Princess of Power. There are a couple of arcs in my serial which I consider homage to MOTU/POP, but the elements I kept were all things I created or conceptual tropes like “forgotten moon colony” and “barbarian hero.”  My world has many influences from ancient myths and fairytales as well, so He-Man and She-Ra are in good company.  Hardcore He-Man/She-Ra fans may find a few Easter eggs in my work, and I hope they’ll regard them with nostalgia and affection.

There is plenty “new” stuff to be found in my stories.  In fact, there’s as much “new” in my fanfiction as there is in my “original” fiction.  To me that’s the whole point of writing a story — to take an idea or a concept and invest it with myself and my interpretation.  It’s impossible for me to engage with certain tropes or character types without thinking of the examples I’ve encountered in other stories. Man-At-Arms and Obi-Wan Kenobi have permanently colored my interpretation of “the wise one” or “mentor.”  Queen Marlena, Princess Leia, Jessica Atreides, Disney’s Snow White, Wicked Queen, Maleficent, Aurora, and Nala embody female power and authority to me. I can’t write a likable scoundrel or an antihero of any kind without shades of Han Solo and Lando Calrissian. Still, it would be unethical for me to take those characters, strip them of recognizable external elements or backstory and implant them into a story I’m claiming is original. I’ve seen professionally published authors do that, and they probably think no one can tell.

It seems to me that a lot of people who criticize fanfiction are assuming fanfic authors lack the ability to do more than copy from others whom they perceive as more creative.  That’s simply not the case.  There’s a lot of bad fanfiction on the internet, but there are also richly complex, worthwhile labors of love that you might enjoy reading.

I interact with writers who range in age from 12 to 80. It’s my experience that most of us start out either writing fanfiction or writing stories that are mostly derivative works. I was fortunate that I had more experienced writers in my life who challenged and encouraged me to find my own stories and recognize the (admittedly blurry) line between accepting that my work is influenced by what I read and actively taking from another piece of fiction. The need to create stories that begin as patchworks of the stuff we read and watch, when all of our characters are some iteration of our favorite literary figures and our ideas are largely reactionary does fade, but it never entirely goes away.  We develop the skills and sensitivity to be more purposeful in what we create. We gain life experiences to draw from and learn how to weave those things into our tropes and plot devices. There’s still going to be some “borrowing” because that’s the nature of fiction. I think the fanfiction naysayers are people who know, deep down, that their own work isn’t quite as “original” as they want it to be.  Fanfiction writers are generally the people who are comfortable with that and just want to tell a good story.  As an author, I think the obsession with “originality”overblown.

***

Rose B. Fischer is an avid fan of foxes, Stargate: SG-1, and Star Trek.  She would rather be on the Enterprise right now. Since she can’t be a Starfleet Officer, she became a speculative fiction author whose stories feature women who defy cultural stereotypes.In her fictional worlds, gender is often fluid, sexuality exists on a spectrum, and “disability” does not define an individual.  She publishes science fiction, science fantasy, horror, and biographical essays. To find out more, visit her website or her Amazon Author page.

Blog Announcement

While I have only recently returned to active posting here this month, I am going to be traveling all of February, until early March. Due to that, the posting will continue to be limited, but I still have projects for this blog.

Next month, Rose B. Fischer’s Fangirl series will finish its run with the last two posts. There will be more news about my upcoming book Sci-Fi Women Interviews: The 2015 Collection and the eponymous monthly feature will return on the last Friday of February.

If you readers and fellow bloggers/writers have suggestions about the kind of content you would like to see on this blog, I am always happy to hear them!

Have a great weekend!

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Fangirl: Doin It for Herself – A Writing Journey by Rose B. Fischer

Fangirl title

Designed by Rose B. Fischer.

I was hesitant to share my last post because I’m leery of the current climate related to intellectual property. I didn’t want to risk getting embroiled in a plagiarism controversy. I didn’t want to take a chance that someone would see “fanfiction” and dismiss Synn as a knock-off of Masters of the Universe. It isn’t one and bears little, if any resemblance to He-Man and She-Ra. It has more in common with Stargate SG-1, even though it’s a different genre. Any connection with SG-1 was purely unintentional, but it’s there because SG-1 has affected the way I think about space travel.

I don’t want connections to Masters of the Universe or other franchises to be a selling point for my work. I don’t want Synn to be lumped into a category with 50 Shades of Grey or any other fanfiction that’s been reinvented and made a ton of money in recent years.   I decided to post anyway because I think it’s important for creators to acknowledge the stories and concepts that inform their work. I blog a lot about the stories that have influenced my work. I use them as examples when I talk about writing craft or as reference points when I discuss my own fiction. So, it would have felt intellectually dishonest if I had left leaving this connection between He-Man/She-Ra out of the discussion. Overall, I think the years I spent developing Defenders of Grayskull made me a better writer. That’s more important to me than whether it was an “original” idea or not.

Anybody who reads the Synn stories for five minutes is going to see that I’m a Disney fan. If you read a little deeper, you’ll find Narnia, Star Trek, Anne McCaffrey, Star Wars, and Dune. http://rosebfischer.com/2015/07/14/fantasy-books-fox-hunting-women/You’ll probably find Stephen King, Anne Rice, and VC Andrews. I haven’t found them yet, but I haven’t written anything to-date that isn’t influenced by them in some way. It’s all there whether I intend for it to be or not. Pretending that it isn’t and saying “Oh, my work is so fresh and new…I didn’t borrow anything!” would be insulting to my audience who are fellow fans of the same genres. I want readers to feel welcome and respected in my online space.

The relationship between Synn and Defenders of Grayskull was a little more complicated, though. I created Synn from the ashes of several failed fantasy projects. Most of its early characters came from an illustrated story I tried to write in 1999. I combined those ideas with some other fantasy concepts I had laying around my head (because yes, fantasy concepts just pile up in the dusty corners of my mind), added the idea of travel between worlds, and then I needed a complex political scene that was based on constitutional monarchy but had room to include other political systems and explore the influence of humanism. I happened to have the perfect thing. I knew that I wouldn’t write Defenders, so I cannibalized parts of the worldbuilding into Synn. The MOTU cartoons only have sketchy references to politics, and I didn’t use any of the MOTU/POP characters. I do have some concepts that were probably informed by Filmation’s series. So, is Synn a fanfiction? No. Is it “based” on a fanfiction? No. Is it completely original? Well…yes, and no. Just like every other work of fiction, in its own way. But maybe a little different, too.

***

Rose B. Fischer is an avid fan of foxes, Stargate: SG-1, and Star Trek.  She would rather be on the Enterprise right now. Since she can’t be a Starfleet Officer, she became a speculative fiction author whose stories feature women who defy cultural stereotypes.In her fictional worlds, gender is often fluid, sexuality exists on a spectrum, and “disability” does not define an individual.  She publishes science fiction, science fantasy, horror, and biographical essays. To find out more, visit her website or her Amazon Author page.

Next Week on the Blog

On Tuesday, Rose B. Fischer will return with a new installment of her Fangirl series.

On Friday, #SciFi Women Interviews will welcome its first 2016 guests with a twist as I will be happy to speak with Robin Rivera and Heather Jackson from Write On Sisters.

You can also expect a couple of announcements on other days.

Have a great Sunday and a good week!

download By Jeff Sheldon2

Photo Credit: Jeff Sheldon.

Fangirl: Doin It for Herself – A Writing Journey by Rose B. Fischer

Fangirl title

Designed by Rose B. Fischer.

In post #3 I talked about a school writing project for which I had planned to write a He-man and She-Ra fanfiction. The story ended up being too complex, but I finished a version of it over the summer. My siblings and I acted it out as a play. We tried to sell tickets, but no one was buying. We invited people, but no one showed, including our parents. (Mom was called to work unexpectedly. No idea where Dad was.) I attempted a second performance, but corralling two kindergarten aged children into that was beyond my abilities.   Not a great start to my writing career. Oh well.

I loved the story. It was a series finale to She-Ra and the Horde was sent packing off of Etheria. The plot involved getting a bunch of secondary characters and minor kingdoms on Eternia to form a coalition to defend themselves against Skeletor while He-Man, Teela, and the rest of the royal family were occupied helping the Great Rebellion on Etheria. (Yes, I swear to God, I was nine and I was writing political fantasy.)

Within a few years, I lost interest in the MOTU/POP franchise, but I rediscovered it when I was in college in the early 2000’s. At that time, the Internet was still a baby and online fandom was mostly a collection of small personal websites housing trivia and lo-res pictures. There were also electronic bulletin boards that served as community platforms, but they were not nearly as complex and dynamic as what’s available today. I decided I wanted to get involved with MOTU fandom, so I went back to my idea from childhood and created a series called Defenders of Grayskull. My goal was to finish it before publishing, and the process of fleshing out, developing, and building a complex political and social landscape took years. I also wanted to create a more solid grounding for the science on Eternia.Magical world building wasn’t difficult, because I had 3 TV series and several comics to draw from, but science is an equal part of MOTU/POP. Scientific concepts are important to me as well, and I’m incapable of suspending my disbelief if the story has too much pseudoscience or junk science thrown in. That meant I spent a lot of time on research.

The plot of Defenders grew, reaching as far back as Randor’s childhood and extending as far forward as Adam and Adora’s grown children.   Eventually, I realized that what I was writing could be the next Robert Jordan epic–in the best and worst ways!   Meanwhile, lots of folks were publishing good MOTU fanfiction. I realized that Defenders of Grayskull didn’t have much to add. My story about the vanquishing of the Horde and what happened to the Royal family next was good, but it shared most of its elements with other, better fiction. I put it aside.

I considered returning to Defenders in 2009 when I realized that there just wasn’t much good MOTU fanfic anymore, but it wasn’t the right time for me to do another fanfiction epic. Today we have the promise of a new movie, and we have the Eternity War. I don’t know how either of those storylines will resolve. The DC comics seem much darker than what I would probably write. Yet, they both offer the possibility of closure to the arcs that I’m interested in. So, while I loved my story, I had to ask myself whether it was really worth years of effort. I was building minor cartoon characters who had essentially no depth into fully developed, three-dimensional players in a political fantasy drama. Did I want to do all for the sake of a hobby activity where there were already solid canon epics being produced? The answer was no. I realized that I was spending as much or more time writing King Randor’s non-cannon siblings and backstory for one-off characters as I was writing anything to do with the main characters. I hate when fanfiction authors do that, because if I’m reading fanfiction I want to read about familiar characters. So, I deconstructed Defenders and used as much of the political worldbuilding as I could to undergird one of my original projects.

***

Rose B. Fischer is an avid fan of foxes, Stargate: SG-1, and Star Trek.  She would rather be on the Enterprise right now. Since she can’t be a Starfleet Officer, she became a speculative fiction author whose stories feature women who defy cultural stereotypes.In her fictional worlds, gender is often fluid, sexuality exists on a spectrum, and “disability” does not define an individual.  She publishes science fiction, science fantasy, horror, and biographical essays. To find out more, visit her website or her Amazon Author page.

January Writing Plans

I hope that everyone had great holidays and that 2016 will bring you many good things. Now that we are in January, I am back to writing and this blog will be active again.

I will focus on my 2015 publications during a week later this month. Rose B. Fischer will return with more installments of her Fangirl series. And of course, Scifi Women Interviews will pick up again on the last Friday of January.

I am working on finishing the Fantasy novella I had started last year, in between formatting and revising other projects. I will also soon announce what will be the first book I release in 2016.

Finally, I am very happy to announce that all my social media pages now have a gorgeous banner thanks to the talented Jennifer A. Miller!

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