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fun fact! - the turnip patch
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fun fact!
Man, now see what you people made me do?  Back in the day, I'd post an update to my site, even if nothing was going up, just to let you know that nothing was going up and you didn't have to check back for another week.  But now that you're all subscribing, I don't want to post a notice like that, clogging up your friends list with something that essentially says nothing!  And yet I feel so guilty not posting an update!

Ergo, it's storytime!  *screen goes wavy like we're doing a flashback*

Once upon a time (like, ten years ago or more), in a far off land (like, dial-up modem land!), I started dipping my toes into the world of fanfic.  See, I knew a guy back in the day who was into fic.  Ranma fic in particular, I think.  Before this, I'd seen this weird fic thing around, but thought it was a kind of weird little thing.  Anyway, he at least persuaded me to do some research to see what this was all about.  So I hit up the Anipike to find me some Ranma fic sites. (wow, pre-Google, too!) And I found some stuff that was good, some that was bad, but overall, okay, so maybe there was some validity in this fan thing.  But I wasn't all that keen on Ranma, so I went poking around for some of the other things I was interested in.

And then I thought, hey, maybe I'll try Gundam Wing.  Hm, lessee here... well, it's pretty slim pickings out here, but okay, here's something.  One part, maybe a couple thousand words.  I like Heero, and I like Duo, and this one says it's got them both in it...

(apologies if the following fic is your fic.  i don't remember the name or author.)

So the fic took place during the war.  Trowa, Quatre, and Wufei had all died in combat, leaving only Heero and Duo behind.  The two remaining pilots were set to go into a joint mission on the ground together the next day.  After some angsty small talk about how they were the only two left to carry on, they kissed and declared their love and swore passionately that they would never leave each other behind.  Nope, never ever.

Then they went on that mission, and it quickly went downhill.  In the end, I think it was Duo that leapt in front of a bullet to save Heero's life.  Heero had some angsty final moments with Duo before he died, and then had only enough in him to whip around and shoot that terrible Ozzie that did the deed before Heero put a bullet in his own head to join his forever-love and fulfill their last promise to each other.  I seem to recall something about the blood spilling out from them both across the floor in the shape of a cross.

Needless to say, I ran screaming from the fandom and didn't look back.

ADDENDUM: It bears mentioning that this was my first introduction to gw fic, death fic (at least in so dramatic a fashion), and BL/yaoi/shounen-ai.

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25 comments or Leave a comment
miyun From: miyun Date: July 28th, 2008 09:38 am (UTC) (Link)
*laughs* wow, story time. 8D

Needless to say, I ran screaming from the fandom and didn't look back.

so then you set up your own shop? like one away from the city, over a hill or two and some obscure road with a fallen road sign? or something like that?

Man, now see what you people made me do?
heeheehee. eljay is evil that way.

and omg anime turnpike! ahhh~ the days when i read anything and everything heeroduo. *wipes tear* 8D
turnippatch From: turnippatch Date: July 28th, 2008 07:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
I didn't actually set up shop for a few more years after that.  That first fic was actually my first introduction to yaoi!  You can imagine how absurd I thought the whole thing was!  I thought the whole fandom was just on something craaaazy.  I eventually started dipping my toes back in out of curiosity, and stayed pretty strictly away from anything yaoi for a while until the volume of it made it rather unavoidable.  ...And then somehow I ended up here. ^o^

Anipike... Man, I'm just full of all sorts of nostalgia-inducing things, aren't I? ^o^ *dinosaurs*
windiain From: windiain Date: July 28th, 2008 12:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
After reading your fic for years, it's really nice to see you 'speaking', as it were. Clog up my friends list all you like. :D
turnippatch From: turnippatch Date: July 28th, 2008 07:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
Before you know it, I'll be pulling back my bangs so you can see both my eyes! *gasp*  ^o^
ravelqueen From: ravelqueen Date: July 28th, 2008 01:15 pm (UTC) (Link)
*laughs*^^ I understand you! gw was one of my first fandoms before I had a sense for a good story and when I sometimes read stuff I liked now, I just shudder...
its sooo hard to find quality heero/duo without all the drama O_o
anyway I like storytime, so if you want to contiune with that I'm all for it^-^
turnippatch From: turnippatch Date: July 28th, 2008 08:02 pm (UTC) (Link)
I do have to admit that reading so much badfic over the years has kind of been good for me.  I'm much better now at articulating just why I think a fic sucks than I used to be. ^^' (hopefully, it's also made me better know what to avoid in my own work...)

Interestingly, the thing that made me flee at first wasn't the 'story' in that first fic.  I think the whole yaoi part of it alarmed me even more.  That was my first introduction to it!  When I finally started creeping back into reading gw fics, I stuck strictly to non-yaoi stories at first because those weird yaoi people were on some kind of illegal substance, and it was not the good kind.

(it wasn't that they were writing stories about gay people.  it was that i had no idea why they would be writing stories where these two characters were gay and hot for each other for no apparent reason.  simply... inexplicable!)

(hell... these days, it's still sometimes inexplicable. -_-)
ravelqueen From: ravelqueen Date: July 29th, 2008 07:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
interestingly enough it never scared me off yaoi, because in some way I find it harder to find a nonyaoi romance fic, where I really get the feel for a pairing. Because in most (good) yaoi fics the author at least tries to reasonably justify why these to people should be together, because of the whole not-that-many-people-are-gay-and-its-hard-sometimes-thing.
But in other romance fic its like, so what so these people are in love, why? and they make it seem like its naturally that way just because they are man and woman. As if it is not important why they seem to be drawn together, just that they are because they happen to have the right equipment.
I sometimes dabble in het but I just can't find a really good author that makes me like such a romance and in yaoi/slash I have found such authors...
or perhaps I'm just sick that way^^
turnippatch From: turnippatch Date: July 30th, 2008 06:38 am (UTC) (Link)
Huh.  While I would agree with you in theory, that people probably take het pairings for granted more than they do yaoi ones, I would argue that most people probably take OTPs for granted more than they do het pairings.  And for many people, what they write is their One True Totally Canon and Requires No Justification Beyond Me Liking It That Way Pairing.

To be honest, I first started writing my own fic because I bought into the OTP heero/duo thing at first, but as I read more and more fics that lacked any justification for their relationship, and in fact, read more and more fics where I was scratching my head over why these two people who were totally wrong for each other were staying together, I had to take a few steps back and analyze the relationship for myself.  And once I did that, I started thinking 'if it were me, I'd be writing them *this* way...!'  And one day, I was pushed into following through on that. =p

...And this is probably why all of my fics run themselves into the ground trying to justify their couplehood... *glares at haven*
sunhawk16 From: sunhawk16 Date: July 29th, 2008 12:31 am (UTC) (Link)
What? We made you social? *griiiin*
I think I've told my own story-time story before, but just in the interest of 'Oh hell, yeah... totally been THERE!'...
My introduction to GW was wandering through the living room while the kid was watching it on Cartoon Network. I think one of the first scenes I saw was the whole 'Heero! Come and KIIIILL me' thing. O.o;
Not too impressed.
Then I went searching for Christmas presents on Ebay and when I entered 'Gundam Wing', I kept getting all these things that said they were 'yaoi'. And then told you if you didn't know what 'yaoi' was, you should go away and just shut up. O.o;
So naturally, went searching on the internet for this yaoi thing and... got an eye full.
First I was aghast.
Then I was intrigued.
And then I was hooked...
turnippatch From: turnippatch Date: July 29th, 2008 05:57 am (UTC) (Link)
Way back in the day, fics didn't really do us the courtesy of being so nicely labeled, so it was a roll of the dice every time you clicked a link!  Every time I stuck my finger back in the fire to see if the world was still as crazy as it was when I left it, I deduced just a little bit more about what was what, and eventually I learned which fics to read without all this weird yaoi stuff.

Alas, I did love my Heero, and I was fond of my Duo, and as it turned out, most of the fics where I could see them interacting in interesting ways happened to be fics where they were in love/lust with each other, so I sucked it up and 'tolerated' this yaoi thing for the sake of having something to read. =p And eventually, I read enough to be persuaded that maybe this pairing had possibility...

So... what did you end up buying for the kid that year? ^o^
sunhawk16 From: sunhawk16 Date: July 30th, 2008 12:46 am (UTC) (Link)
I uh... >_> got hooked on the fics enough to get interested in the original and *cough* was a nice enough Mommy to buy her the whole series on DVD. And then we watched it together. ^____~
turnippatch From: turnippatch Date: July 30th, 2008 06:41 am (UTC) (Link)
Slick move!  I hope the kid hasn't caught on to the trick to getting the good presents out of Mommy yet, though. ^o^
keristars From: keristars Date: July 29th, 2008 06:51 am (UTC) (Link)
I agree with windiain - it is awesome to see you 'talking' as it were, without a fic, after so many years of reading and thinking "I should email Jei and tell her how much I appreciate her stories" and never getting around to it. (PS: I really appreciate your stories. (PPS: the only story I've ever printed out was Best Laid Plans when I did a semester in France in 2004 - that's how long I've been lurking, reading, and enjoying, and I really ought to have emailed to say thanks sooner!))

My first intro to gw fic was quite similar, only it was in 2003 and thanks to some girls in the dorm downstairs from me and GWA. It was the...Arcadia? arc. I think that's it, where each of the pilots has a mini-me kid from an alternate universe that Trowa found. The girls in the dorm were like "oh, you've never read fanfic before? no idea what yaoi is? here, read this, it's great!!!" except I'd also never seen any GW episodes, not really, and I was totally stunned when halfway through the story, what was billed as 1x2 suddenly turns into 1x5x2 hurt/comfort for what I thought was no reason.

It was quite startling, and it took me a couple years to be comfortable with trios, but boy did the fandom stick. Not that I've ever seen the canon for myself, five years later, though I'm quite familiar with it.

(Er, now I feel silly writing that out, but yay for 'how i found fandom' stories.)

Edited at 2008-07-29 06:54 am (UTC)
turnippatch From: turnippatch Date: July 30th, 2008 06:24 am (UTC) (Link)
'Talking' without a fic... which implies that I was talking with my fic earlier.  If that's the case, then man, I just don't know when to shut up, do I? ^o^ Yeah, this whole talking thing gives me the creeps.  I'm going alienate people, I just know it!  There's probably someone out there right now, thinking 'omg you just summarized my favorite fic! ;_; I'm gonna tell my friends on you!' >_> Hopefully, my sense of LJ drama is overblown. ^^'

Paranoia aside... Glad to hear you've been sticking around for so long!

When I first started reading fic, I'd only seen the first few tapes of the series. (omg vhs fansubs!) Since I was reading non-yaoi then, I got a number of Duo/Hilde fics... and I had no idea of Hilde was a canon character or just some sort of group hallucination. O_o
lavendarlizard From: lavendarlizard Date: July 30th, 2008 12:35 am (UTC) (Link)
*sigh* I can't believe you're expecting a decrepit old dragon to learn new tricks. O.o

I'm almost embarrassed to admit that I first found yaoi/GW fanfics through the about.com anime guides... And I already knew what yaoi was, but hadn't encountered any fanfics in over 20 years. ^___^ You can imagine... new, shiny, sparkly... I read every piece of 1x2 I came across, and Sturgeon's right with the 90% rule.

We have become more discriminating, we hope. ^___~

Does this mean you check your flist...? O.O

turnippatch From: turnippatch Date: July 30th, 2008 06:29 am (UTC) (Link)
New tricks?  What new tricks?  You mean, like, you want me to stick with the non-updates?  I was always kind of fond of them from the reader perspective because then you knew if you were supposed to be refreshing every hour or what.

After reading and then writing fanfic... I realized that I'd been minorly composing fanfic in my head for years. O_o Nothing as involved as actual fic, but imagining characters from books or whatever in different situations and the like.  That was a revelation. =p

Were you at least familiar with GW before running into it at about.com?

*koff* No, I don't check my flist with any regularity.  But I know it's there.  It's just... unnecessary. =p
lavendarlizard From: lavendarlizard Date: July 30th, 2008 02:11 pm (UTC) (Link)
See, now I have to change my routine of clicking on various LJs. It's an OCD ritual with me and now I have to make a ~*change*~ O.O; Scary!

I always liked your updates - or non-updates. "Move along; nothing to see here." It always reminds me of a New York City cop... ^___~

I think I got on the net at about the same time as GW began airing on CN, but I don't really remember which came first. I know my dial-up was no good for any kind of video watching... >_>

I've always had 'stories' in my head... Continuations of my favorite books or TV shows. Just never put them on paper until I got a computer. ^___^ It took me a couple of years, though, to make the connection between the stuff I was reading online and the stuff a boyfriend used to bring home from work on hardcopy. Smutty Star Trek fan-pron... in 1972. O.o

turnippatch From: turnippatch Date: July 30th, 2008 08:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
*still puzzled* But you can still just add my journal to the list of journals you click on, can't you?  Unless adding one breaks the routine.  But any fic that's new will still show up as a recent post.  Though if you really wanted to rock it oldschool, you could just go to the index page and pretend it was like the old page.  I went and added the same sort of update list to that page as there used to be.

Oh sweet dial-up.  I used to log on and open up as many fics as I thought I would read in all these different browser windows and then log off again so I could read at my leisure without having to worry about tying up the phone line. =) Or having it cut me off, as was common in the final days of my modem usage...
lavendarlizard From: lavendarlizard Date: July 30th, 2008 08:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
I don't know how many people do what I do... go to each individual LJ to check for updates... I think most people just surf their friends page. That's like... O.O! overload! O.O! to me. Too much all at once...

But dang it... looks like my list of gotta-checks has reached some kind of critical mass with the addition of root veggies. O.O Like I said... ~*change*~

I will adapt, but it'll give me a headache... *whine* Oh. Wait. That's the paint from the apartment being spruced... Nevermind... <_<
freashbread From: freashbread Date: August 3rd, 2008 05:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
"Oh sweet dial-up. I used to log on and open up as many fics as I thought I would read in all these different browser windows and then log off again so I could read at my leisure without having to worry about tying up the phone line. =) Or having it cut me off, as was common in the final days of my modem usage..."

I used to do the exact same thing! lol

I started reading fics back in the days of Buffy the vampire slayer (I was 10) and was reading NC-17 kinky fics by the time I was 11. But I remember that when I read my first 3 or 4 fics I was so comfused thinking they were unaired episodes or something lol It was til I got to a future fic that the light blub blinked on. I then went on to read Sailor moon fics but everything was either het/3somes or in the case of Sailor moon some mild in the background yuri.

At my 13th birthday party my friend came up to me and told me she had to show me the worst fanfic she ever read, so we go on the computer and she searches for a bit. I remember it was a green webpage and it was 2+1 where Heero was sitting on a cliff at sunset and duo was totally stalking him (but the author didnt eem to realise that she had given Duo this characteristic) I think they got together at the end.... It was so poorly written I turned to my friend and told her that yes this is one of the worst fics ever and then asked her what the series name was. I spent the next 6-8 months reading every episode summary and synopsis I could find so that the fics I was reading would make sense. That autumn GW started playing on YTV!!! lol I taped every episode off the tv (as it aired @ 6am)

I still love GW but you publish the only fics I still read 8 years later
turnippatch From: turnippatch Date: August 4th, 2008 03:32 am (UTC) (Link)
Man, the first thing I thought when I read Heero sitting on a cliff and Duo being a stalker was that Duo probably pushed him off. ^^'

You sure got an early start on things!  I bet reading episode summaries in no way prepared you for the reality of GW ficdom, though. ^o^ I'm still amazed by how people can take a story and run with it.

Glad to hear you're still around. ^_^
spazduchess From: spazduchess Date: September 9th, 2008 04:41 pm (UTC) (Link)
Um Hi, I just found your fics a couple of months ago and became an automatic addict. I had been on a hunt for GW fics I have never read, then I realized that I have read a LOT of fics. But I found your page and it was an oasis of unread fantastical fics. :)

I like how you explained getting into fandom, like your friend I also started with Ranma, but I was actually watching that anime when I was 8. It wasn't until I was... 11 or 12 that I found fanfics.

I have had many a sleepless night because of fic, and when I found GW I had no idea what yaoi was. Now I have *counts on fingers* 9 years under my yaoi belt, and am impressed with the amount of talent out there.

Just wanted to say you have added several sleepless nights to my life because of your spectacular fanfic. Also now I have an unfathomable desire to find a Grumpy Bear plushie... O_o I like your non-updates also, a little something of nothing is better than absolutely nothing.
turnippatch From: turnippatch Date: September 10th, 2008 03:04 am (UTC) (Link)
Hello there!  Glad to have you onboard!

I found fanfics in high school (by modem), but they were easily dismissed... up until I went to college and had a T3 ethernet connection.  -_-'   The easy access just made resistance not worth my time.

*spreads the grumpy love* What do you mean, 'unfathomable'???  ^_^

Happy reading!
spazduchess From: spazduchess Date: September 10th, 2008 05:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
As to my unfathomable urge to acquire a Grumpy plushie I must admit that I have always found the Care Bears to be on the creepy side. Yes, they wigged me out as a wee yougin. Something that colorful and that happy almost all the time was not natural, and probably evil. Even when I got older they still to this day wig me out some, but your Grumpy makes me rethink my stand on one Care Bear.

Also when I went Grumpy hunting on E-bay, the plushie looked kinda creepy. (Huge head with a not so grumpy expression) I think the older ones look much better than their newer counter parts. I still must obtain a Grumpy so that he to can impose his Grumpy wisdom unto me.

turnippatch From: turnippatch Date: September 12th, 2008 06:22 am (UTC) (Link)
Grumpy Bear totally trumps all the other bears, though.  But he totally gets a bad rap because you can read his little official blurb, and it says that him bring grumpy all the time is supposed to make us realize how silly we look when we're grumpy all the time!  Bah!  They don't know what they're talking about!  *snuggles my bear*

I have a bear from the generation before the current ones, I think.  Yeah, I don't like the current one at all!  Granted, mine's still only marginally grumpy looking, but I think it's still better than the new one.
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