Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Posts, Thank Yous, Author's Notes, and Timelines

Yay! My next chapter is up! And it only took me about six weeks this time. That's a new record! There were nine weeks between chapters one and two, and thirteen weeks between chapter two and chapter three. Sheesh, I'm ticked off at my favorite writers taking YEARS to finish their novels, and I go and take MONTHS to finish simple little fanfiction chapters! Who's a hypocrite? X-P Anyway, I'd like to start off by thanking my readers for their faithfulness and kind reviews. I love watching my hit meter get higher and higher, and for so many to come back after three months - I love you guys! I recently added an appreciation circle to my profile to thank all of you, but here it is again:
OK, so I would like to take the time to send out a thank you for all of my readers. You are the reason I keep writing. I'd also like to thank all of you who have either faved me or my story (or both *squee*). Your love for my work - to the point of wanting to go back and re-read it - humbles me and drives me to become a better writer for you. Thank you for your faith in my talent. Finally, I'd like to thank my reviewers. You guys tell me what you think after reading, you are my way of knowing what is working and what isn't. You are my guidance and I appreciate every word of it. You take me in and give me such kind words of encouragement. You drive me to keep writing even when I'm tired from all of my hectic hours, you make me smile when I have a bad day, you swell my ego, you prove to me that I do have a talent that I should master, and finally, you humble me with such phrases as "[This] could well turn into one of those epic fanfictions that has hundreds of reviews!" (Thank you TrulyNonsensical). And now a list of all my faithful readers - those that have reviewed multiple times, faved more than one story, or faved me as an author. I write mostly for you, thank you for staying with me. Stars go to those who either faved or reviewed every story I've posted. You are my superstars ^_^
- Acosta_Perez_Jose_Ramiro* (Thank you for reviewing EVERYTHING I post... you missed a chapter of What is Truly Meant to Be tho.. ^_^) - Annemarie22 (if you review my fluffy V'day piece I Caught You A Star you can get a star! See how nicely that works out?) - Anonymous Latina (Thank you for reviewing every chapter! Check out my one-shots!) - Azure129 - Dotjuh (Thank you for the Author Fave) - Helga G. Pataki (Thank you for the Author Fave) - iHeartPhantomoto (Thank you for the Author Fave) - Knowledge-comes-Wisdom-lingers - KPFan72491 (Thank you for the Author Fave) - Loonytunecrazy*** (Three stars for faving every story, writing a review to every story, and faving me as an author, you ROCK!) - Mony - NazgulNazgul (Thank you for the Author Fave and review) - NicNack4U* (Thank you for faving all of my stories!) - NintendoGal55* (LOL, I love how you listened and went back to my first story. Here's your star ^_^) - SuprSingr (Thank you for the faves and reviews) - TrulyNonsensical (Thank you for the Author Fave) Special love for the following reviewers who really made me smile:
- Acosta_Perez_Jose_Ramiro: I'm always happy to see your name in my mailbox whenever I post something. Thank you for the support. - Anonymous Latina: Thank you for reviewing every chapter of my stories. I love to see what you think of my progress (Also wanting to fave a story twice XD You're awesome) - Knowledge-comes-Wisdom-lingers: I really appreciate you telling me that you had to rush to my most recent chapter as soon as you saw the alert in your mailbox. Even after three months you still needed to know what happened next. Your patience humbles me. - LoonyTuneCrazy: Like I said before, you just rock! I always look for your name when I post something new. - NintendoGal55: I love that you get so invested in my stories. You are the type of reader I write for ^_^ - PokeshippersShadow1: I love that you wanted more of my TJM oneshot. Your faith in my writing for the movie inspired me to do just that for April's Script Frenzy month! - Rachel Cabbit: To receive such rave reviews from an author I admire is mindblowing! And sentences like "The best revelation of Gertie and helga I've read in the fandom" certainly swell the ego ^_^ - SuprSingr: Thank you for constantly reassuring me that I'm staying in character. It's my biggest fear as a fanfic writer. - TrulyNonsensical: Again, thank you for the kind words and the belief that so many others will eventually enjoy my work. - Vanjoygree: As with PokeshippersShadow1, your enjoyment and kind words inspired me to write my own TJM script in April, so stay tuned!
Alright, now that is out of the way, how about some extended Author's Notes?
As I mentioned both in earlier posts and in the A/N for the chapter itself: the song that inspired me was "I Will Always Love You" by Whitney Houston for the movie "The Bodyguard." It was tricky to translate the song in to prose. If this truly were a musical it would be easy to have Arnold wish Helga farewell and then belt this song out to her. Unfortunately, I can't do that in prose form - at least, not without being flamed or banned from Although, if I don't have any other ideas for next year's Script Frenzy I just might redo this whole story as a legitimate musical. ^_^
The big problem I had when it came to writing the song as a chapter was that the song sort of repeated the same ideas: I'll only be in your way if I stayed with you, and so I'm leaving for your own good even though I'm still in love with you, but I'll always remember you and those memories will be so bittersweet; again, goodbye and please don't cry over us because we both know I'm not what you need right now; finally, I'd like to wish you a good life, all your dreams will come true, that you will be happy and joy filled, and most importantly I wish you will find the great love of your life. That was the whole song summed up, and in dialogue it's tricky to make that paragraph a full chapter. I hope I did a good enough job.
Another hurdle was trying to reserve some sympathy for Arnold. I needed to leave the audience with the thought that he still had enough of a redeeming quality for them to still hope Helga takes him back one last time. He broke her heart twice, and I hated making Arnold do that. It would have been so much better if I just left it as Arnold dumping Helga in eighth grade and not returning until their senior year. However, I already set up that Arnold was at Helga's Sweet Sixteen, and from there those two just managed to get back together - IT WAS THEIR OWN CHEMISTRY, NOT ME, I SWEAR!!! X-P Point is that since they got back together at her birthday, but I needed them to be broken up when she was eighteen I had no choice but to write this chapter. DON'T HATE ME ARNOLD, I'M SORRY I MADE YOU SUCH AN IDIOT!!! I just hope I didn't make all of my fellow ArnoldxHelga shippers *SPOILER: Hover Mouse To See*
A final hurdle I had was the fact that I'm actually in a successful seven-year long-distance relationship. Yes, it is hard. Yes, it hurts to want to hold him or kiss him but he's not here. Yes, there are days I wish I could just run home and curl up in his comforting arms. Yes, there are times I get upset because I really need to talk to him and he's not available. Yes, there have even been times where I resent him because I feel like I'm only dating someone in title alone, and I desperately want to go to a bar and flirt and dance with a random guy just to have that interaction. I've even thought about a few of my guy friends who ended up having crushes on me, and wondering if I would have returned their feelings if I never met my fiance. I even miss having that fun in college of just being single and flirty. So Arnold does have valid concerns.
However, my fiance and I talk every night on the phone just before going to bed. We IM, email, and chat via webcam. We visit each other multiple times a year. We even have phone-dates where we sit on the phone while eating similar food and watching the same movie, like in When Harry Met Sally or in The Truth About Cats and Dogs. And finally, we have family, friends, and video games to distract us. It's tough to have a relationship like this, but it's not as hard as most people think. I'm actually a little surprised that people call me strong for being able to hold on to such a tough relationship. My response is that at least I'm not an Army spouse; at least I know my loved one is safe; I could never sleep knowing my beloved was in a warzone. Knowing that long distance relationships DO WORK if you put the effort in to them makes Helga's argument terribly valid, and I sort of hate not having Arnold at least TRY the relationship out.
I even debated redoing the chapter so that he was breaking up with her over the phone. Helga's resentment for being alone would cause them to argue - as Arnold feared they would - and a guilt-ridden Arnold decides to let her go. I didn't like the idea of Arnold dumping her over the phone, however, and so I left it as Easter Monday.
I also want to touch upon one more thing. Thanks to the concerns voiced by one of my readers, I'd like to verify something. Yes, the chapters of What is Truly Meant to Be are all prequels to the first chapter. If it didn't take me months to post an update it might be easier to pick up on. Basically, the first chapter has the pull of Arnold running to confess his love to Helga. We then have the shocker ending of *SPOILER*. I then wanted to show everyone how they got to that point. I wanted to show the journey Arnold and Helga took from him dumping her when they were thirteen all the way up to his love confession five years later. However, if I had placed the chapters in chronological order the fact that Helga's *SPOILER* wouldn't be such a shock.
To clarify, here is the official timeline:
CHAPTER 1: LIFE AFTER YOU Arnold and Helga are both 18 - or Arnold's about to turn 18, depending on where in the year you place his birthday and if he's older or younger than Helga. It is the summer before college and Arnold realizes his love for Helga and races back to Hillwood to see her, only to be surprised at what he finds.
CHAPTER 2: GOODBYE TO YOU The story as a whole flashes back so you can see how Helga and Arnold end up where they are in Chapter 1. This chapter is right after Arnold breaks up with Helga when they were thirteen. Helga is on a destructive bender and Phoebe tries to help her get past the hurt of Arnold dumping her.
CHAPTER 3: LADY IN RED We now jump about three years and it's Helga's Sweet Sixteen party. I used some "Word of God" about the pitched-but-never-made show The Patakis. For instance, Olga moved back home and the Patakis are slowly but surely becoming a little less dysfunctional. They're sort of like The Simpsons now, where the family can be at each other's throats, but the viewer still knows that they truly love and care for each other. Arnold had moved away with his parents right around the time they turned fourteen. Since I had Arnold break up with Helga during the school year, perhaps the Shortmans move over the summer between eighth and ninth grade - a nice transition point, just before high school. Anyway, even though Arnold comes back to visit throughout the year, he still hasn't really interacted with Helga, and so he never really noticed how amazingly beautiful and popular she had become while he was away. Not needing her front to prevent people from teasing her really helped charm her classmates. And recharm Arnold.
CHAPTER 4: I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU A week has passed since Helga's Sweet Sixteen party. Aside from an April Fools prank during Harold's Passover and Easter Sunday itself, Helga and Arnold have spent every moment together. It is now the Monday after Easter and Arnold has to head home with his parents. We know from the first chapter that Arnold and Helga aren't together, and this chapter shows why.
CHAPTER 5: *SPOILER* I think telling you the songs the upcoming chapters are based off of could be a bit of a spoiler, but you can look if you wish. Just hover your mouse over the word "Spoiler". Anyway, this upcoming chapter is shortly after Arnold returns home, so Helga's still sixteen. A certain someone comforts our broken-hearted blond as he tries to woo her away from Arnold.
CHAPTER 6: *SPOILER* Again, if you want to know, hover over "Spoiler". This chapter is sort of an overview of Helga's years without Arnold. I'm not sure if this will be just before the grand return of Arnold that we saw in the first chapter, but Helga would be about seventeen or eighteen here - depending on what I feel like. ^_^
CHAPTER 7: *SPOILER* The last of the "flashback" chapters. We're finally back to Arnold as we see the last days of his Senior year in high school. Something weird is going on around him and it makes him realize that maybe he still loves Helga. By the end of this chapter he's on his way to make that epic trip we see in the first chapter.
CHAPTER 8 AND BEYOND And now we're back to "present day". Chapter Eight will start with Arnold's reaction to Helga's Big Reveal at the end of the first chapter and continue on in chronological order from there. I believe I have about sixteen chapters total for this story. That is, of course, unless another chapter runs long like Chapter Three did and I have to split it up.
OK, I hope that cleared some things up for you guys. Well, I'm running late for work, so I'll hope to see you soon. ^_^

No comments:

Post a Comment