Turn Fan Fiction to Original Fiction by Erin Lale
Welcome to a guest post from acquisitions editor for Damnation Books and Eternal Press and author, Erin Lale. Her latest book is How to Turn Your Fan Fiction into a Novel. In this post, she shares with us how to turn fan fiction into original fiction. Enjoy!
Are you writing Marvel-Thor Fan Fiction? Want to Turn it into Original Fiction so it can be Published?I have no doubt that the latest Thor movie is going to spawn a lot of fan fiction. Some of it may be written well enough to publish, if only it can be de-fanfickized.You can only “publish” fan fiction on fan sites like fanfiction.net where no one makes any money. It’s relatively easy to remove the copyrighted Marvel elements so your Thor story becomes mythology-based, and can be professionally published.Why follow these instructions? I know my Norse mythology. I’m the author of Asatru For Beginners: http://www.amazon.com/Asatru-
In How to Turn Your Fan Fiction Into a Novel, I provide a framework for converting any type of fan fiction into original fiction. One of the major ways to do that is to identify the details of the world-building in the fan universe and invent new world-building for your own original world. In the case of stories about the Norse gods, the world-building relating to your original fiction has already been done for you, and is the collective product of an entire culture. So when you get to the world-building part of the book, just use this handy pre-made list. If you’re a particular fan of Marvel, you might be able to come up with a lot more items for this list, but these are the basics.
10 Easy Steps to Substitute Myth for Marvel
Thor and Loki are brothers.
Myth: Thor and Loki are just friends. Loki is Odin’s blood-brother. Blood-brother means that Odin and Loki performed a ritual together in which they cut their hands and swore brotherhood to each other.2.Marvel:Thor has blonde hair.Myth:Thor has red hair and a red beard.
Thor’s hammer is a sledgehammer.
Thor’s hammer may not actually be a hammer. The Thorshammar symbol used in the Viking age and by modern Asatruars strongly resembles the stone age Battle-Axe symbol. In mythology written down during the age of conversion, Thor’s hammer is described as a war-hammer with a short haft.
Thor is single, with a human love interest.
Thor is married to Sif.
Sif has dark hair and is a warrior princess.
Sif has gold hair — literally, it’s a wig made of gold metal. She is concerned with agriculture, particularly wheat.
Loki is an ice giant.
Loki is generally depicted as a fire giant. It does not actually say he is one in the lore, but his mercurial nature is fire-like, he is set up against wild-fire in a contest of strengths which implies he represents a domesticated form of fire, there is some archeological evidence that associates him with the hearth, his depiction as a fire giant is firmly set through representations such as Rakham and Wagner, and of those modern Asatruars who sacrifice to him it is generally done by tossing things into the campfire, so although some scholars dispute his having originated as a fire giant, the majority of the evidence points that way.
Odin is the Allfather, therefore he is literally the gods’ biological father.
The term Allfather is very late, and probably Christian-influenced. It means patriarch, the king who is the head of the god family. Odin became king of the gods only after his many acts of self-sacrifice and his wanderings made him the wisest of all beings. There is considerable evidence that the original king of the gods was Tyr. There is some evidence, although not well known even among heathen scholars, that until the Norse period Odin and Loki were the same being. Some scholars speculate that because Odin wanders so much, he is part of a summer king / winter king pair, possibly with Ullr as the winter king, or with Odin as winter king and Tyr as summer king.
Frigga is dead. She is succeeded as Allmother by a council of 3 goddesses, including Gaea.
Frigga is alive. Gaea belongs to a different pantheon. There is no such title as Allmother. Odin’s title of Allfather was probably created by a Christian scribe in an attempt to relate him with Jehovah, and no equivalent female title existed. Frigga’s title is Queen of Heaven, and predates Odin’s title of Allfather and even his questionable ascension to the throne. Of all the various disputed evidence for Odin being the king, his being married to Frigga is the most solid piece.
Those who live in Asgard are called Asgardians.
Those who live in Asgard are called gods. Those native to Asgard are Aesir (singular, Asa = male, Asynja = female, plural Aesir = male or collectively all possible genders — yes, there are more than 2, Asynjur = female.) In addition to the Aesir, there are also gods of the Vanir (singular, Van = male, Vana = female) who originated in Vanaheim and were part of the hostage exchange that ended the First War. The most well-known of the Vanir are Freyr and Freya and their father Njord (who may be the same being as the goddess Nerthus, having undergone a change of gender in between the Roman era and the Viking Age.) In addition, there are also several Asgard-dwellers acknowledged to actually be giants, including Loki and Skadhi. The oldest Aesir are also of giant origin themselves, including Odin. The Aesir therefore represent an evolution from giant stock rather than an actual separate species.
Thor can fly. He throws his hammer and then hangs on and flies with it.
When depicted in human form, Thor doesn’t fly. He walks, rows a boat, or rides a chariot pulled by goats. Like all the gods, Thor represents an aspect of nature. As a type of Thunder-god, he is the storm and lightning that can either be destructive or can bring forth growth from the Earth, and is essential to farmers. Clouds “fly” in the air, so to that extent he can fly, but only when he is in the form of nature rather than the personified form in which he appears in stories.
There are many more things one could write about with respect to Norse mythology and the Norse gods (which is actually a misnomer, since the culture which gave rise to the mythology spanned the whole of northern Europe north of the Roman Empire and predated the development of modern nation-states.)
Calling them the Viking gods is even more of a misnomer, though, since most of the people who worshipped them were not pirates, and the Viking Age was rather late in the development of this culture.) Take these basics to help develop your story, read my book, and I hope this prompts you to also read the original literature and learn even more about this fascinating culture.
Erin Lale has been a published writer since 1985, and is the acquisitions editor at Eternal Press and Damnation Books and the author of Asatru For Beginners and How to Turn Your Fan Fiction Into a Novel. More at: