We were told that our former ML has many things that she loves (and so we assume she would enjoy reading about in short story format). This includes: all things Firefly and Nathan Fillion, plot bunnies/ninjas, chick lit, zombies, Doctor Who, Supernatural, getting lost/stranded in Nebraska (that was the plot of a few NaNo novels in our former ML's time), cats, and pirates. By picking at least one element from this list, the current ML's thought it would make a welcome present for our wonderful many-year NaNo ML while she attempts to heal from this debilitating illness.
When I heard that she loves Firefly, I immediately thought that I should write a story about the crappy town where Wash is a hero. Then, I latched onto the idea that reavers are pretty much zombie plot bunnies. It is a stretch, I know. I spent many nights after I hit 50k trying to figure out how to start this damn short story and went to bed frustrated each time. Should I find a script and rewrite that script in narrative with the characters as anthropomorphic critters (so I can fit my zombie plot bunnies in, naturally)? Should I try to write a completely new story, sticking to the regular story of the show? What the hell am I supposed to do here?!
Frustrated with a blank page, I turned to a creative outlet that always lets me rid myself of frustration- doodling. In the end, I ended up with a critter drawing based on every Firefly character. Mal became a wolf. Inara, a sexy cat. The Tams became parrots (cuz parrots are super smart- duh!). Wash- 100% raccoon. Shiny! Zoe became a jaguar. Kaylee is the cutest puffy cheeked squirrel you'll ever see. Jayne- a ferret (because while they sometimes do incredibly funny things, mostly they seem to bite and cause a ruckus). Book- the sage turtle. And last of all- my reaver bunny. The pencil sketches were alright, but they didn't pop on the page until I added ink outlines. I tried to add clothing to each character that would signify who they represented. Wash has a loud obnoxious shirt. Mal has his long coat. Jayne is wearing his hat. Book has his hair. You get the idea. Anyway, I took some creative liberties with my reaver bunny. I colored them in with a combination of markers, wax crayons, colored pencils, and MS Paint with varying results. Most of them looked better as plain ink line drawings.
So that was over a week ago. When I sat down to write this morning, I was nowhere closer to figuring out how to write this short story than I was at the beginning or middle of the month. I gave up. I can officially say this: I do not write fanfiction. It is not my forte at all. However, my reaver bunny stuck with me and I decided to stick with just him. Once I made that decision, the flood gates of inspiration opened for me. I wrote 1.3k in about an hour. No outline. No clue about a plot. I just wrote in my normal fashion- pantser all the way, baby.
This "Firefly fanfic that was" has morphed into a thriller/horror about a zombie rabbit. I read it to L once I finished. She listened like any 10 year old who adores her big sister would. When I finished and asked her what she thought, she smacked me and told our mother that if she can't sleep for the next month, it is all my fault. So I guess I at least got that part right. It is scary enough for a 10 year old at the very least.
So will this short story ever see the light of day? Who knows...I don't have a clue. Maybe it will serve a purpose at some point. If the ML's decide to actually sell the ebook, I'll be sure to provide a link for it for anyone that is interested. Until then, I thought I'd share my zombie bunny (or the "Reaver that was"):
Love is love, no matter the back story. <3 DS