April 10, 2010

Interview with Gangsterdorothy author of Burning the Edges and Only Little Girls

Hello, my name is Michelle and I'm a Twi Fanfic addict. Unfortunately, I haven't found a program to end my habit. I didn't even look. So, I figured I might as well put myself to work and share the all-consuming fics that have made me what I am today.

I'm too lazy to write my own blog. Instead, I latch on to someone else and offer to help. Win, win. Plus, I get to talk to other writers. That makes me fangirl, and fangirling is fun.
Welcome to my first interview.
I 'met' Kelly, AKA Gangsterdorothy, several months ago through a group skype chat and was given the link to her first fic, Burning the Edges.
I love it.
Bella is wonderfully snarky and has an interesting hobby that has alienated from her peers. Edward is beyond adorable and he and Bella develop a relationship, which reveals Edward's shortcomings. *gigglesnort*
Together they help each other navigate the harsh realities of high school including The Bitch Brigade.
I laughed, I cried, and I fanned myself from the heat of delicious UST. That is fic perfection in my book.
But wait! There's more!
Kelly also has a new fic!
Only Little Girls is an AU fairytale type story filled with a mysterious creature in the woods and an imaginary friend named Annabelle that creeps me the fuck out. Kelly claims Annabelle's creepy factor wasn't intentional, but I'm pretty sure she enjoys freaking me out. The mystery of the creature and Annabelle is what really drives this fic, but I have to say the formal writing really accentuates the fairytale feel of Only Little Girls. It's a different but wonderfully enjoyable fic.
Now, on to the interview and answers to the probing questions everyone wants to know:
Michelle: How did you come up with the idea for BtE (Burning the Edges)?
Kelly: I had been reading Twific for a couple of months and I really wanted to start writing my own. I was driving home one day and I had this really sarcastic, bitter Bella talking in my ear. I wasn't sure what her deal was, but I wanted to get to know her. I live near a state park with lots of trees and for some reason that led to thoughts on fire, and that led to me thinking 'well, what if Bella was this anti-social pyro?' It was probably the most random thing I'd ever thought of.
M: LOL that is probably the most awesome "aha" moment ever ;)
K: LOL, usually my ideas come to me in weird ways. Sometimes its just a matter of the right place, right time
M: And what about OLG(Only Little Girls)? I read OLG and sometimes wonder 'how did she think this up??'
K: I was trying to finish The Twilight 25 and trying to come up with ideas for that. Sometimes, when I'm stressed weird things come to me; I work well under the gun. Anyway, I heard an Edward say to me 'Only little girls can see.' I didn't know what context, not even if it was AH or AU. I just started writing the first chapter and the story didn't start coming together and making sense until then.
I have random characters talk in my ear all the time, and I just want to tell their story
I sound like I'm crazy. lol
M: LOL! No you don't!
I think it's awesome!
K: I very rarely come with anything that is on my own, unless a character prompts me.
I think too hard about it then, if I force myself to think of something
M: yeah, do you have unwavering confidence in what you write?
or are you plagued by 'OMG why did I do that' moments?
K: It depends. There are some moments that are so clear and I know they'll work. Then there are times when I say 'Oh this is shit. Everybody is going to hate me or think this sucks.'
M: LOL, I can totally relate
K: I'm thankful I've had people along the way help me and pre-read things for me
And they know when something sucks and that I am capable of more
I had one chapter where I had to throw out 6 pages of story because it wasn't working, thanks to people telling me I was capable of better
that's alot of writing
to toss
K: It was.
I wanted to cry
M: :(
K: But, I still have those 6 pages and know that they suck now
I've considered posting it as an outtake, to show my writing process. I love the whole process and how people come up with things
and where they go from sucky to downright awesome.
M: it is cool to see that kind of progress and show what really goes into writing
I think some people make it look too easy
K: There are times when its super easy for me and things flow from my brain to the page. But sometimes its like pulling teeth
M: YES. omg yes.
K: Most of the time I write out a first draft, and then go back and detail later.
M: do you see a difference in reader response on chapters *you* as the writer thought sucked?
as opposed to ones that flowed
K: That is a very good question
I have found many chapters that I thought sucked, were some of my readers favorites
M: Me too! isn't that weird?
K: It is
I had one in particular back in the beginning that I thought royally bit the big one, but it got my highest review count ever from that point.
And actually, my most recent one, I thought I was off my game on that one
but people liked it
M: the last update? I thought it was great! I died over Charlie possibly seeing those pics. Which, by the way, will we be getting the full convo over that or a summary of that meeting with Lauren and Bella's dad? (Are you wondering what I'm talking about? GO READ! ... after the interview)
K: LOL Spoiler: We will be getting a good size conversation that I am working out in my head
M: YAY!!!
K: There might be some surprises
M: nice :)
K: lol, I try
That last chapter, juggling more than a dozen people was no fun at one point
M: I can imagine! I thought you handled it well ;)
K: I was close to drawing a map.
K: with little stick figures on it
ok, so BtE deals with some pretty interesting.. um.. situations. did you wonder how Edward's problem would be perceived?
K: Yes. I did wonder and worry a lot. I've had people review and guess 'was he abused?' I wanted to make it clear that I would've warned readers way in the beginning if I was going to go that way. I know people are uncomfortable with abuse, rape, and anything that runs in that vein and I didn't want to trigger anything for them.
I had never planned on it being abuse though
M: I have to say it is the MOST original problem for FF
K: lol, it was very interesting to write
M: and speaking of warnings... Annabelle??? ;) you need a warning on OLG about creepy imaginary friends/ghosts/scary little girls... LOL
K: haha!
I had no idea she would get that way
she is brilliant
K: I think she is too. She is a persistent little thing
She has her reasons
M: I know she does... *sigh* care to share?
K: lol Nope, sorry. Its all part of the mystery and intrigue. oohhh
There will be a big 'aha' moment though and everything will come together
I can't wait!
will it be the last chapter?
K: Yup. I had originally planned this to only by 3 chapters, then it went to 4 and now 5. I was tempted to go further, but I'm stopping at 5
M: OMG! that's awesome and sad all at once
K: I know. I really like writing this, but I know when I need to end a story. Especially when its riding on a mystery that might not be a mystery at all
Does that make sense?
M: yeah, I can see how OLG isn't really a fic you can drag out ;)
K: I don't like it when fics drag out for so long. Like with BtE, I know in the beginning, some of those chapters could've been combined and make it seem less longer.
One of my favorite fanfics is The Masque of The Red Death. I loved where it ended, even though I wanted soooo much more
it ended perfectly
K: One of my favorite last lines ever
M: yes, that fic blew my mind from start to finish
never disappointed
K: I was a bit apprehensive about reading horror, but brattyvamp told me that it was awesome.
And it came highly recced on the gaz too
M: yes, it did
ok, so, when you write, do you have a routine?
Like do you need silence or music blaring?
K: I'm probably one of the most flexible writers out there. Its kind of like how I sleep; I can write anywhere with total silence or with music playing in my ears. I can write with the TV on or while music and TV are on. I get in the zone and nothing can distract me.
I need caffeine though
thats a must
ok, so you've written your chapter and your awesome beta gives you the go ahead to post (at least she does with me ;) ) what do you do after you hit that submit button?
K: First of all, I hover over the 'add chapter' button and do a mental checklist that is probably not necessary. 'Is the chapter title spelled write?' 'Did I forget to add those divider lines?'...'Okay, ah, I don't about this.'
Then I usually tinker around online, make all the update posts on LJ and on Twitter
and just hang back
I try to step away from the computer for a few minutes too
M: I'm so glad I'm not the only one with post anxiety ;)
K: I type to my beta sometimes 'eek I just posted'
But most of the time I have this silent panic underneath
M: me too. I get so nauseous. even now 20 chapters later LOL
K: awww
I think 'ah fuck it, they don't like it, they don't have to read it.'
or flounce. I just write what I want to write, but I know that I don't need to get worked up over it
I know there were many chapters where people were like 'what? I can't believe that' and others that get it. Different strokes for different folks
I'm not the kind to get butthurt over a review. I might be like 'well they might be right.' or 'oh I wish I thought of that', but what can you do.
M: very true
do you have a particular person (actor or w/e) that you see when you imagine your Edwards and Bellas?
K: A lot of the times, I see their lips, eyes, nose and hair, but its not one cohesive face.
Its more facial features than anything else
M: hmm, that's very interesting
K: I know my Edward in BtE has hair similar to one of the test shots from movie Edward
very wispy bangs
that can hang in the eyes
M: Your BtE Edward is so adorable
K: He is. I love him
I wasn't sure if people would like him, because he's not the guy who says 'I want to bang you, Bella' out loud
M: I can imagine him with the bangs now, and it makes him even cuter
K: he's subtle
and its hard to sell it sometimes
M: yes, not every Edward needs to be a stud
I LOVE subtle Edwards
K: I just started reading The Blessing and The Curse that is probably the least subtle Edward I've ever read, but I enjoy it
M: I know you worked on some FGB pieces and both BtE and OLG are WIP, do you have any other fics planned?
K: Someone was kind enough to buy a BtE EPOV outtake, so that'll come out sometime after BtE is done. I just finished my Twific Gift Exchange Fic not too long ago and that'll come out soon. I do have a few ideas for more fics, my next one is going to be an AU and I plan on writing ahead on that one before I post.
M: Very cool! AU seems to be getting more popular right now
K: I think there are still ideas out there waiting to be explored. People want to get back to the vampire aspect of it all.
M: yeah, I'm liking some of the more dark vampire Edwards out there
will yours be dark??
K: Oh yeah
M: NICE !!
K: I have two AU ideas, but I'm trying to decide which one to go with
M: I can help ;) LOL
I'm shameless
K: haha
It's okay, I don't mind talking about it
One I had started to develop a long time ago
But, I'm still deciding where to go with it
*at this point our Beta extraordinaire decided to FINALLY join our conversation and *
M: what is your biggest FF pet peeve??
K: When Edward described clothing like 'She looked smokin' in her Prada black dress with Jimmy Choo shoes'. I'm sorry, Edward is a guy, he is not going to know labels
Anna: or if he does, HE IS GAY
K: He's going to say 'Fuck, she looks fucking hot in that dress.'
"she was wearing blue, or something"
K: yes
A: baby sparrow blue
K: haha
A: like the sky after a soft snow
when the clouds part
M: Rich Royal blue that set off the creamy white of her luminescent skin
A: that sparkled with her inner beauty
M: and lit up her chocolate orbs.
can I get a 'wet folds'?
A: fwalp fwalp
K: Wet folds ugh yuck
I palmed her center
M: hot cavern
K : okay enough fanfic clichés
M: LOL, ok
what's your fandom pet peeve?
K: Hmm...good question
I think that people who can't take concrit
People who can't take concrit annoy me.
If you want to be a real writer, you have to handle someone telling you 'this sucks' or 'this is awful'
A: kelly, you suck
K: Thank you Anna
A: its awful
you're welcome :)
K: I appreciate your honesty
M: yeah but 'this sucks' isn't really concrit
A: i cant lie for long
you're pretty awesome, so is your writing *I AGREE!*
K: Well I mean, there are people who are blunt like that
and then there are those who are willing to sit down give you advice because they know you are capable of making things great
M: yeah, THAT is what concrit is
K: I know that if people didn't tell me 'Kelly, I think you can flesh this out more', I wouldn't know what I would do.
A: i dont have much patience for shitty work :) so if i happily beta, i feel like i am working with the top writers *Now you know why we let her join in*
K: You need opinions that are not your own to make yourself a better writer
M: yes, it does help to have someone clue you in to what you may be missing
K: There are things you don't think of when you're writing
M: yes, I'm guilty of that...or thinking something is a good idea when it's NOT
K: haha, yep
i'm guilty of that too
I had Bella and Edward basically go from uncomfortable to expert kissers in no time flat
in one chapter
M: nice
A: i remember that
i was like ummmmmmmm
K: stumbling backwards expertly
M: nothing like inexperienced to porn star
K: thank god i had her there
to tell me, um no, Kelly
yes, as much as I hate to admit it, anna is awesome
A: :)
M: Kelly, do you have a RL or FF author who inspires you?
K: LOL, if I sound like a name dropper, I don't mean to be
drop em bb
A: drop it like its hot
K: I'm really inspired by bratty_vamp and how fast she cranks things out. I remember chatting with her all through her writing Abbraciare il Cantante and The Best Man and I thought 'holy shit, she is cranking those out.'
And there were never any dull chapters in there
I was jealous and wish I could get shit out that fast
americnxidiot is another one. She makes things accessible and intriguing
Her and I would write together at night and she'd get it done in no time
BV I mean
M: I wish I could do that as well
K: I'm getting better, but some chapters take longer than others
I tend to over think things sometimes
M: haha, I know how that goes
but I think it proves what a good writer you are
you don't want to give something half assed
K: I told you, I sat for an intense 2 minutes and thought whether Bella would say 'panties, underwear or undies'
A: she did
i remember this well
M: YES, I remember you telling me that
K: i think i was just anxious about the sexing
M: sexing is hard
K: I was like 'omg I don't want to use any of those words.'
i was like 'i don't want to say penis or vagina'
I didn't even want to say nipple!

M: but it worked for you
K: I'm just trying to be true to my characters
M: yes, i don't see how some fics write whole chapters of sex *No disrespect AT ALL. I love sex*
K: But people also let loose in the bedroom and I had to compromise somewhere
M: true
K: I can't do a whole chapter
I can't write smut
or PWP
M: I'm trying to do a O/S, but...
I don't think it will happen
K: why not?

M: cuz, it's smut ;)
and it has to be a min of 5000

K: lol, try it
M: I may, just to stretch my legs
it's for an anon contest so no one will know how badly I stink
A: lol
K: i might enter this o/s contest where lemons have to happen
but i like the concept of the contest
M: which one?
K: An Edward to Remember
K: lol
A: lol
K: I love old time movies
M: me too
well, I guess I'll let you go. *since it was past midnight* I appreciate you letting me interview you :)
K: Of course anytime. <3
*From here the conversation dissolves into 15 minutes worth of various sexual scenarios involving Edward and the perils of outdoor sex.*
M: ok goodnight really I swear
A: night
K: night


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