Go mbeannai Dia duit.

About Me

My photo
Quaker by conviction, mother by default, Celticst through love, Christ follower because I once was lost but now am found...

Sunday, August 15, 2010

"It might be more amusing," said Giles idly. "Only if you're going to be wicked, do it on the grander scale."

A long time ago I came across these books by Antonia Forest. I've read them all ~ even The Thursday Kidnapping. Actually I think that was the first one I read. Like a lot of people who like these books I was intensely curious about the very private person who hid behind the persona of Antonia Forest ~ & at various times I have gone looking for odd snippets of information, driven by furiously annoying dedications that give hints that her characters were based on real people. In the process I came across this site. This site links to fanfic. Oh my...

Now I'm not normally a fan of fanfic but haven't you ever wanted to know what became of your favourite characters? OK, my imagination is quite up to the task but it is fascinating to see how others view the various characters, who likes who, who is disliked, & how they view their various lives turned out. Quite the eye~opener!

Which got me thinking...Fanfic's not that new. I first came across it when I was about 10 or so ~ only it wasn't called fanfic. I fell in love with Pelagie Doane's illustrations. Simply gorgeous. My librarian was horrified that I was about to read the last book in a series before reading the previous two. In fact she insisted I take out the first book. Having no choice, I did. I never read it, not then. Nor the second one. I began with Heidi's Children ~ & worked my way backwards.

At some point it occurred to my addled brain that this series was written by 2 different people. Charles Tritten is no Johanna Spyri. The quality of writing is just so inferior though I suspect far more appealing to white middle class Americans ...& Australians. The Heidi of the latter books is nothing like the original Heidi imagined by Johanna Spyri. For the adult me this is incredibly jarring. Tritten was obviously more interested in filling in the gaps than staying true to the tone & feel & character of the original book. I never could visualise Heidi marrying Peter ~ but then stranger things have happened.

Anyway, that is one of the things I noticed trolling through a site dedicated to all things Antonia Forest. Those who are doing the fanfic try really hard to keep the tone & mannerisms of the characters as Forest originally portrayed them so there is a seamless mesh between the original & the new. I don't know, but it seems there are quite a few of us out there who enjoy reading vicariously others interpretations of an author's characters.

What about You? Ever tried this? No idea? Loathe it? Great for giggles? Leave us a comment & let us know.


Amanda said...

Ganeida, I have never heard of Fanfic or any of the books/characters you have spoken of, except for Heidi, but I don't remember reading that book either! Oh dear... it sounds like I have been living under a rock lol!

Amanda said...

oops should be my NEW link ;)

Jo said...

I have learnt something new tonight - I have read and own all three of the Heidi books and never knew that "Heidi Grows Up" or "Heidi's Children" was written by someone else (Spyri's translator) - one day I must read them again to see if I notice the change in writing as you mentioned. I certainly didn't as a child!!

After some Goggling here are 1 major differences between the authors.

1. Heidi in the first book Heidi is described as having, "short, black curly hair", when she is around five to eight years of age. In Heidi Grows Up, when she is fourteen, her hair is long, straight and fair (?)

Ganeida said...

Amanda: Forest isn't well known but those of us who've read her love her writing. She is responsible for my knowing some rather esoteric information about Hakylute [?] & Blessed Edmund Campion. lol

Jo: My copy of Heidi's Children had an introduction; I actually read introductions & all was explained there. ☺ Because I read them backwards I had a lot of trouble dealing with the hair colour change! It still bothers me. It is such an obvious thing & I can't think why Tritten changed it.

seekingmyLord said...

Well, my fanfics tend to be in the flavor of sci-fi and perhaps some fantasy, but for the most part I am a purist; that certain something that caused me to fall in love with the original books usually are missing in another writer works, even if the writer is a better one.

LightBulb_88 said...

Ganeida, I have been reading fanfics for a few years now. I enjoy seeing other people's perspectives on what may have been, delving into a sub-plot, continuing the end of a series and what people bring of themselves to the fics. It strikes me that you would possibly be quite a good writer of fanfics should you choose to do so - if you ever do, let me know: I'd love to have a read!

Ganeida said...

Seeking: like you I tend to veer away from fanfics because that *certain something* is invariably missing.

Lightbulb88: I think my *voice* is too distinctive to do fanfic well & generally my imagination does not ride well on someon else's work but this will link you to the last NaNo I did.

Persuaded said...

I'm not a fan of fanfic... in fact I can't remember reading any, although I'm sure I must have somewhere along the way.

BTW, I always assumed Peter and Heidi would end up together, lol.