â€œShrek! Why are we going back to that swamp?â€
Shrek continued along the path without answering.
â€œShrek, are you going to tell me what we are doing?â€
Shrek stopped and stood there a second before turning to loom over Donkey. â€œWe are not doing anything. Fiona is visiting her parents and I am going back to my swamp. Thatâ€™s -- I am going, not we.â€
The ogre turned and continued plodding along the muddy trail. Behind him Donkey stood a second and then followed, saying, â€œI donâ€™t understand it, Shrek, you live in a castle and youâ€™re going back to that old swamp. Nope, I donâ€™t understand it.â€
Without turning, Shrek said, â€œDONKEY! You donâ€™t have to understand it; Iâ€™m going back to my swamp. I didnâ€™t invite you to come along, so you can go back to the castle. I donâ€™t care.â€
Donkey watched the ogre walk away and muttered, â€œSure, I can go back to the castle. Hmph, my place in the castle is in the stable. You have a gold-trimmed bedroom. My bedroom is all wood with straw on the floor. Iâ€™m sure...â€
* * *
Okay, come on, youâ€™re dying to know why Shrek is going back to the swamp, right?
I donâ€™t know when it started, but Fan Fiction has become an actual writing genre in the past few years. The idea is that you write about your favorite novel, TV show, or movie, use the actual characters, and put them in a new situation. It can be a sequel to something that has been done or it can be something completely different.
There are those that view Fan Fiction as a form of derivative use and, thus, permissible under the copyright law. Many supporters of Fan Fiction quote a portion of the copyright law that allows the author â€œTo experiment with variations of copyrighted material for fair use purposes, while preserving the integrity of the original.â€
Detractors point out that the passage allows experimentation, but does not allow distribution of said works -- meaning you can write it, but you canâ€™t distribute it.
Legality? Wow, thatâ€™s still being studied by any number of lawyers and judges. Here are a few links to let you know whatâ€™s happening in the fan fiction world. First, the Wikipedia entry.
Then thereâ€™s a how-to about the topic.
Next a bit more comprehensive how-to on the same topic.
Finally, one of the most comprehensive discussions.
As an added argument in favor of fan fiction, a number of authors and producers have come out in favor of it and said they welcome such take-offs on their work. Others have decried it and positively said they would not allow fan fiction based on their works.
Keep in mind that we are not dealing with parody. Space Balls, in my mind is one of the greatest parodies of all time, but it is not fan fiction. Even though you know who the characters are supposed to represent, they all have different names. That, in itself, is a major difference.
Fan fiction uses the original names and maintains the integrity of the characters. You can place the original characters in an entirely new situation and it is then fan fiction.
This Weekâ€™s Challenge:
Write a fan fiction story. Take any movie, book, or TV program and put the characters in some new situation.
The movie, Casablanca, took place in 1941 and the Germans actually invaded that area in November, 1942. At the end of the movie Rick says, â€œLouis, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship." Use that to write a sequel to Casablanca where Rick and Louis are working against the German invasion.
The Pirates of the Caribbean franchise is now getting ready to release a new movie; pre-date that one and write something with Captain Jack Sparrow as a young midshipman. Maybe explain why he has such an attachment to his hat.
What happens to â€œBabyâ€ after Dirty Dancing ends? Does she go back to school or does she become a regular dancer at the Kellerman Resort?
Follow up on that as it has been reported that the Mountain Lake Hotel (the original Kellerman Resort) is now having some hard times. Maybe Baby, somehow, buys the hotel and then...
Following the Patrick Swayze theme, what happened to Oda Mae Brown after the end of Ghost?
And the really neat guy in that movie -- how about Vincent Schiavelli? He was the ghost on the subway that taught Sam Wheat how to touch and move solid objects. After Sam left, what happened to Vincentâ€™s character? Did he ever get a name? What else did he do in the subway?
If I take Buffy out of this time and place, put her in another time or world where they donâ€™t have vampires, whatâ€™s she going to slay? Donâ€™t know, itâ€™s your story.
Watch Out For:
Not a lot to say here as Fan Fiction is still being evaluated in the courts. Is it experimentation or is it a form of derivative use?
Your choice, but whatever you decide, post it!
I was pleased with the submissions this week as they covered a wide spectrum of genres.
Christmas Eve - Saturday Writing EssentialÂ by Brenda Youngerman
How Do I love You - SATWE - Gather Writing EssentialsÂ by Elsie Duggan
I Hate Trees (Saturday Writing Essential)Â by Len Maxwell
Should I kill myself? Saturday Writing EssentialÂ by Brenda Youngerman
My normal request is that you run over, read these fine submissions, and click on the â€œrecommendâ€ button even if you donâ€™t comment on them.
- Put this challenge statement at the beginning or end of your submission so readers will know what youâ€™re supposed to do.
Challenge: Write a fan fiction story. Take any movie, book, or TV program and put the characters in some new situation.
- There is a limit of three submissions from each member per day. If youâ€™re extremely prolific, spread out your work and post only three submissions per day.
- Post to Gather Writing Essential.
- Tag your submission with SatWE.
- Include (Saturday Writing Essential) as part of your title.
- I ask that you make your submission(s) by next Friday afternoon.