Does It Have to Follow Canon?
Once I again, a disgruntled reader sent me an e-mail, stating that I shouldnít be writing fanfiction, since I donít follow the same guidelines set up in the original, and that I make the characters so OOC (Out Of Character), that I shouldnít even call it a Ranam fic, an Oh My Goddess fic, a Dragonball Z fic or whatever. I only have one thing to say to this personÖ
ďWhat planet are you from?!Ē
HELLO. Thereís a reason why itís called FAN-fiction. Itís because itís written by FANS, like me. Like all fanfic writers, weíre not part of the original creative staff, nor do we have anything to contribute to any future works. Heck, we donít even get paid for doing this. Therefore, we donít HAVE to follow the formula set up by the original. All we do is take the same ingredients, and mix them up in different combinations, and even change up the directions on how to do it. Thereís no set rules on what we write, how we write it, or even how the characters act. Thatís what makes fanfic writing so versatile. Itís literally ANYTHING GOES.
Letís start with the question of why we write fanfiction in the first place. The bottom line is that though we like the original, thereís always something in it that we DIDNíT like. The series was too short. It ended with some unfinished business. Some characters should have gotten something. Whatever the reason, we the writers become compelled to write about it. And when the writer disliked something on the whole, then he/she feels compelled to change it completely.
And guess what? The writer is perfectly within his/her rights. Why? Itís because it happens to be HIS/HER story. And the reason why he/she posts it on the internet for all to see? Itís because that there are BOUND to be some readers out there who agree with the author. Never mind that there are those who disagree or are outraged that we dare to go beyond the set limits. Who cares? Itís not like anyoneís stopping anyone from making their own stories.
So what if I make Ranma act so unlike the original? So what if I donít follow the general rules that Takahashi made up? Does that mean that I canít write a good story to entertain my readers and also fulfill, (at least to myself), what should have happened? Itís not like my stories will change what happened in the original. All Iím presenting is a different view of how things could be.
Whenever I get complaints about my stories and how they donít follow the original, I simply tell them to either stop reading my stories, or just stop reading fanfiction altogether. If you want to stay in the same old routine as the original, then donít bother with other peopleís works, since they wonít please you and I certainly donít want to waste any time in convincing you otherwise. For those who do want to read, I must give warnings to everyone to expect ANYTHING. Donít keep to the original too much. You may want to use it as a reference point, but thatís all.
Whenever someone says, ďRanma didnít do that in the original!Ē I simply respond, ďYeah, so whatís your point? IĎm not writing the original.Ē Then some dope says, ďAkane did all this good stuff.Ē My response is, ďSo? Does she do that in my story? No.Ē My favorite is, ďShampoo or Ukyo or whoever, is a scheming, cheating #@%#! Akane is the only one!Ē My answer to that is, ďWhy not Shampoo or Ukyo or whoever? I mean, this was changed here, and this never happened, and she did this instead of that.Ē Readers of that sort always seem to miss that detail, or just deny it completely.
Get this fact clear. I am NOT writing canon. Iím writing FANFICTION! And with that said, Iím going back to writing more of my FANFICTION.