Author Topic: 'The Changeling', 'The Chrysalis' plus wingnuts  (Read 2995 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Bimo

  • Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 14
'The Changeling', 'The Chrysalis' plus wingnuts
« on: November 03, 2011, 09:42:13 AM »
 Hi Crash, hi everyone else who might be reading this  :)

I thought I'd go public with this bit of feedback, because it contains a few things  I'd like to read other people's opinion on. Hopefully that's okay with you Crash :). Also,  I guess it goes without saying that I very much enjoyed 'The Changeling' and 'The Chrysalis' . Capturing and intense, with enough substance and steam behind them to drag a usually NC-17 avoidant, drama and adventure preferring reader like me through the shippier and more erotically charged parts.

Actually, I was delighted when I discovered there was a sequel, since finishing 'Chrysalis' had left me with a strange feeling of 'Hey wait, that can't be all. There's got to be more to John's (literal as well as metaphorical) descent into darkness!'. Reading the respective wingnuts about how both stories came into being was fascinating. Thank you so much, Crash, for going public with all that behind-the-scenes stuff! :)

A lot of what you've said about writing  'Changeling' and 'Chrysalis' made me think about narrative patterns, themes and also something I can only vaguely describe as the 'problem of Genre lit'. (My brain feels a bit mushy at the moment, 'cause I'm sitting here with the headcold from hell.) Oh, and maybe I should clarify:  by 'problem'  I of course don't mean there's anything wrong. It's just that I felt the change from the very dark, in a way very grand-scale universal literary themes of 'Changeling's opening chapters, to the very microcosm of John/Aeryn in 'Chrysalis' very distincly.

To phrase it boldly, a lot of what John undergoes in 'Changeling' (the entire setting, being stripped of his humanity, the starvation , his fight against the faceless oh so very alien charrids) seems to touch upon stuff that's straight from Conrad's 'Heart of Darkness'/Coppola's 'Apocalypse Now'. I even wondered whether John himself might realize this and eventually refer to it. Well, maybe not to Conrad, but at least to  'Apocalypse'...
John's recovery in 'Chrysalis' on the other hand struck me as something entirely different, rooted in the time-proven structures of Hurt/Homfort and NC-17 fanfic, pushing all the right buttons. (While NC-17 might not exactly be my cup of tea on most days, I'm a sucker for H/C and loving it to bits and pieces. And having these two very different things, the grand scale and the more 'fanficcy' one combined, the first one going over into the latter while keeping the darker undertones, was interesting.

I'd be glad to know what  other people are thinking about this. :)

Oh, and a final observation going back to what you wrote in the wingnuts for 'Changeling':

Sleeper, Hunter, Explorer, and the Idiot.  I was going to take that part out.  I cannot
remember why I was going to do that.  I think it had to do with the levity, which I felt might be
inappropriate, or because I thought it might be more devastating if he was defining himself in more
animalistic terms.  In any case, PKLibrarian told me that it was better with those parts, and I
wound up putting them back in.  She was right, of course.  I especially enjoy the idea that John
would refer to himself as the Idiot.  Aside from being in character, it illustrates that there is some
vestige of John Crichton still alive inside this vengeful, vicious feral being.  


I'd very much like to hug PKLibrarian for convincing you to keep that part in, because I loved Johns way of referring to himself that way. To me it made perfect sense on both the immediate story and also the meta level. Not only is John reducing himself to the very (and somewhat archaic) core elements of his personality. Replace 'Idiot' with 'Fool' and you are dealing with a nice quartet of literary archetypes.  ;D

Bimo
« Last Edit: November 03, 2011, 09:42:56 AM by Bimo »

Offline KernilCrash

  • Psychotic Scribbler
  • Administrator
  • Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1622
  • What's Crash up to NOW?!?!?
    • Crash Debris
Re: 'The Changeling', 'The Chrysalis' plus wingnuts
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2011, 10:26:45 AM »
Hi Crash, hi everyone else who might be reading this  :)

Hi Bimo!!

Quote
I thought I'd go public with this bit of feedback, because it contains a few things  I'd like to read other people's opinion on. Hopefully that's okay with you Crash :).

More than okay.  I love it.  I sometimes question my eagerness to discuss my own stories, because it feels inherently egotistical.  But after some soul searching, I think what it really comes down to is that I enjoy discussing Farscape.  Talking about the stories lets me see how they affect the readers, which in turn increases my ability to craft tales that are loyal to Farscape.

Quote
Actually, I was delighted when I discovered there was a sequel, since finishing 'Chrysalis' had left me with a strange feeling of 'Hey wait, that can't be all. There's got to be more to John's (literal as well as metaphorical) descent into darkness!'.

And I was quite satisfied with the ending (I think you meant The Changeling).  John has hit rock bottom and has reversed direction. He's on the way up now.  Story is over!!  :laugh:  (Yes, that's sort of evil of me.) 

Quote
It's just that I felt the change from the very dark, in a way very grand-scale universal literary themes of 'Changeling's opening chapters, to the very microcosm of John/Aeryn in 'Chrysalis' very distincly.

I agree completely.  They are exceedingly different genres, and I think that's part of the reason why I eventually decided that The Chrysalis had to be a sequel instead of an 'addendum' (additional parts) to The Changeling.  They are associated, but they are not part of a whole.  I didn't know it at the time I was writing what became The Chrysalis.  All I knew is that it didn't belong at the end of The Changeling.

Quote
To phrase it boldly, a lot of what John undergoes in 'Changeling' (the entire setting, being stripped of his humanity, the starvation , his fight against the faceless oh so very alien charrids) seems to touch upon stuff that's straight from Conrad's 'Heart of Darkness'/Coppola's 'Apocalypse Now'.


Absolutely.  It's not where I started when I dreamed up the story, but it's where I eventually wound up.  As I built the story, I discovered that in order to satisfy my original story idea (what would it take to turn John Crichton into a cold-blooded killer) *AND* keep John in character, I needed to take everything away from him.  The moment I accomplished that, I discovered that he shed some stuff that I hadn't expected ... like his own humanity.  Some of this stuff doesn't happen intentionally.  When a fanfic writer is fortunate enough to be working with well-rounded, exceptionally well created characters, they often do things on their own, without the writer intervening.  This was one of those instances.  ;D 

Quote
John's recovery in 'Chrysalis' on the other hand struck me as something entirely different, rooted in the time-proven structures of Hurt/Comfort and NC-17 fanfic, pushing all the right buttons. (While NC-17 might not exactly be my cup of tea on most days, I'm a sucker for H/C and loving it to bits and pieces.


Going off on a tangent ... have you waded into Child of the Night yet?  That is twenty chapters of pure H/C.  (Watch out for the last chapter.  Chapter 20 is NC-17.) 

Quote
I'd very much like to hug PKLibrarian for convincing you to keep that part in, because I loved Johns way of referring to himself that way. To me it made perfect sense on both the immediate story and also the meta level. Not only is John reducing himself to the very (and somewhat archaic) core elements of his personality.


PKLibrarian is an outstanding test driver.  (She doesn't like the term betareader.  ;D )  She has a very discerning eye for when characters are out-of-character, for when dialogue is true-to-Farscape, and for when a story simply isn't working.  I occasionally post light-weight stories without having them betaread, but the idea of posting a conscientiously-written story without running it past her first gives me the willies.  I don't feel it's ready until she puts her stamp of approval on it. 

Quote
Replace 'Idiot' with 'Fool' and you are dealing with a nice quartet of literary archetypes.

Ooooooooooooo ... :o ... Interesting observation!!!  I like it.  And obviously, it was not intentional.  :laugh:  Once again ... better lucky than good!

Thank you!

Happiness is not a destination.  It is a method of life. -- Burton Hills
Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass.  It's about learning to dance in the rain. -- Vivian Greene

Offline shester

  • Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1920
Re: 'The Changeling', 'The Chrysalis' plus wingnuts
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2011, 10:52:17 PM »
Discussing Crashfic.  Love it!!!

Sybil



Earth.  Terra Firma.  Seems forever it's filled my thoughts, been my goal.  And now...I'm here.
John Crichton-Terra Firma

Offline Bimo

  • Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 14
Re: 'The Changeling', 'The Chrysalis' plus wingnuts
« Reply #3 on: November 04, 2011, 03:40:40 AM »
Discussing Farscape? Oh yes, a thousand times yes!  ;D

I think one of the things that I like best about fanfic is that fan fiction, as a form of storytelling,  is so ideally suited for communicating ideas about characters or fictional universes and to share those ideas with a broader audience. Facets and nuances, slightly varying interpretations. Personally I've always found that a well-written story not only prolongs my enjoyment of the source material but also very much enriches it.
What you are saying about enjoying to talk about your stories makes a lot of sense, especially with regard to the loyalty aspect. As a reader I usually don't mind where exactly an author or a story is taking me if I can feel their respect and love for the source.


Quote
And I was quite satisfied with the ending (I think you meant The Changeling).  John has hit rock bottom and has reversed direction. He's on the way up now.  Story is over!!  :laugh:  (Yes, that's sort of evil of me.) 

Evil and in the best of Farscape traditions! Just think of 'Won't Get Fooled Again'! Hey John, the scarran is dead. You may climb back into the light now ... :devil:

Quote
  As I built the story, I discovered that in order to satisfy my original story idea (what would it take to turn John Crichton into a cold-blooded killer) *AND* keep John in character, I needed to take everything away from him

Which, of course, essentially means Aeryn and Little!D. The more I think about it, the more I get the feeling that John's transformation into a de-humanized, desperate creature mirrors Aeryn's descend into darkness during 'The Choice'. One of the most fascinating and (also most scary) aspects of their relationship seems to be that John and Aeryn need each other to remain human. I couldn't say when exactly, at which point of the show, the two of them have crossed that particular Rubicon, but they surely have crossed it. Without each other, they'd be truly lost and dead.

Quote
Going off on a tangent ... have you waded into Child of the Night yet?  That is twenty chapters of pure H/C.  (Watch out for the last chapter.  Chapter 20 is NC-17.) 

Well, actually I was looking for CotN because it had already been recommended to me when I stumbled across 'The Changeling'. (My reason for picking Changeling first: I had just finished watching the PK Wars and was in the mood for some post-PK Wars fic)

I'm really looking forward to CotN now! :)

Bimo

Offline Nette

  • Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1644
  • Irreversibly Contaminated...
Re: 'The Changeling', 'The Chrysalis' plus wingnuts
« Reply #4 on: November 04, 2011, 07:35:43 AM »
Discussing Crashfic.  Love it!!!

Sybil

Discussing Farscape? Oh yes, a thousand times yes!  ;D

 :agreed:

Quote
I'm really looking forward to CotN now! :)

Bimo


You are in for a ride and a real treat when you read CotN.   Best story eveeeeeeeeer.  I can't tell you how many times I have read it.  Enjoy!!!