LTWF: Self-Indulgent Fantasies
Once upon a time, there was a really beautiful girl with LOTS of money. Her name was Susan, and she was super popular. Everyone wanted to be her, but she was nice, so everyone liked her too. She fell in love with a handsome Frenchman.
Oh, and she could fly and turn invisible.
Oh! And Sam Worthington wanted to go out with her, but since she was already married to the wonderful Frenchman, she had to turn him down. He still sends her flowers and chocolates, regularly…and they like to hang out.
Okay, okay, enough. If you don’t want to gag yet, you should. Just writing that triggered severe gag-reflex in me. Sure, that may be My Ultimate Fantasy, but it’s not a story. It’s really not something I should share with people either, methinks.
The point is this: YOUR FANTASIES ARE PRIVATE AND SHOULD NOT BE THE CORE OF YOUR STORIES.
Fan fiction is one thing, as Savannah explains very well here, but original fiction is quite another. You need to distance yourself from self-indulgent drivel.
And here’s why:
When we write our fantasies out, there’s never enough conflict. Perhaps there’s no character conflict (notice that Susan above is an obnoxious Mary Sue) or maybe there is no plot conflict (um, there is no resistance to her love story) or maybe it’s just all-around cheesy (yes, my fantasy definitely has a lot of CHEESE). No matter what, the big problem is private fantasies have no conflict, and without conflict, the story is of no interest to the reader.
Now, of course, you can use parts of your daydreams or draw inspiration from your fantasies. Gosh, the kiss scene in THE SPIRIT-HUNTERS is definitely something plucked from my Most-Perfect-Kisses-Imaginable-Bank. And, of course, the rogue-ish Daniel is built on from dreams of I LOVE in real life.
But those personal favorites are layered underneath not-so-happy conflict, rough decisions, crappy circumstances, and lots of failure — all stuff that doesn’t happen in my fantasies. 😉
Of course, fantasies can sometimes be hilarious for anecdotal tales… Case in point:
If you ever fantasies like that, I ask that you please share.
Actually, just go ahead and share what your personal DREAM starring YOU would be!