Update Schedule

There was once an update schedule. It lived a good life, a peaceful life. A quiet life. But then... things began to change. It became more and more erratic, sometimes completely disobeying its very reason for existance. And at last, the update schedule could take no more. It cast off its chains and went free, seeking new lands where it would be appreciated. This message it left where once it had lived, to warn other schedules of the peril.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

The Origin of the Mary Sue

Those of you who know me know that I secretly write fanfiction. Not only that, I occasionally read it. This is not a post about fanfiction- although I might do one, come to think of it. There's some good stuff out there among all the awful stuff, and I would have loved not to have to sort through it all.
Nor is it about webcomics, though that's coming too (actually, it has nothing to do with webcomics except for this sentence, because I thought of connecting it and decided against it).
Wow, this is a senseless post. I'll pretend that it's okay because it sounds sort of almost like a really bad copy of Douglas Adams (who is awesome). Now that we've mentioned Douglas Adams, it must also be said that this is not a post about the meaning of life, although if you're even a little bit nerdy you'll know the answer.
This was actually about Mary Sues, as is evident from the titles. All this stuff up there is just there because I'm writing blog posts while tired and the backspace key would require moving my hand (those of you who know me also know just how lazy I can get when tired). Besides, I went through all the effort of writing it.
Anyway. Back to the point (if I have one, which I'm beginning to doubt). I discovered the other day that the term Mary Sue actually comes from somewhere. There is, in fact, an original Mary Sue. All of you nerdy people who understood my reference above, you've probably seen Star Trek. The rest of you will just have to muddle along- I don't think it's all that difficult to understand.
There isn't really a set definition, but feel free to read this if you don't know what a Mary Sue is. It does a pretty good job.
Wow, this has gone off topic. I just wanted to share with you the existance of this story, in which the term Mary Sue was coined. It is now commonly used all over the internet (and, presumably, in real life).
By Paula Smith

"Gee, golly, gosh, gloriosky," thought Mary Sue as she stepped on the bridge of the Enterprise. "Here I am, the youngest lieutenant in the fleet - only fifteen and a half years old." Captain Kirk came up to her.
"Oh, Lieutenant, I love you madly. Will you come to bed with me?"
"Captain! I am not that kind of girl!"
"You're right, and I respect you for it. Here, take over the ship for a minute while I go get some coffee for us."
Mr. Spock came onto the bridge. "What are you doing in the command seat, Lieutenant?"
"The Captain told me to."
"Flawlessly logical. I admire your mind."
Captain Kirk, Mr. Spock, Dr. McCoy and Mr. Scott beamed down with Lt. Mary Sue to Rigel XXXVII. They were attacked by green androids and thrown into prison. In a moment of weakness Lt. Mary Sue revealed to Mr. Spock that she too was half Vulcan. Recovering quickly, she sprung the lock with her hairpin and they all got away back to the ship.
But back on board, Dr. McCoy and Lt. Mary Sue found out that the men who had beamed down were seriously stricken by the jumping cold robbies , Mary Sue less so. While the four officers languished in Sick Bay, Lt. Mary Sue ran the ship, and ran it so well she received the Nobel Peace Prize, the Vulcan Order of Gallantry and the Tralfamadorian Order of Good Guyhood.
However the disease finally got to her and she fell fatally ill. In the Sick Bay as she breathed her last, she was surrounded by Captain Kirk, Mr. Spock, Dr. McCoy, and Mr. Scott, all weeping unashamedly at the loss of her beautiful youth and youthful beauty, intelligence, capability and all around niceness. Even to this day her birthday is a national holiday of the Enterprise.

Hope you enjoyed. The story is Paula Smith's, and the text is from...um... okay, there's no name on that website. Interesting. It was originally published in some fandom magazine in the 1970s (I think). It demonstrates perfectly why there's a need for the term Mary Sue (or Gary Stu if you're a stickler for genderized terms).

Edit/AN: Sorry about the formatting mistakes; I hope they're all fixed now. Thank you to S for pointing them out to me. If I missed any, please let me know.
I figured there was nothing to be done about the content of the post, so I left it as is. Note to self: do not blog when tired.
I didn't mention books at all this post- I'm still reading WoT (book 5 now), and I'm also reading a book called Strike, by D.J. MacHALE (yes, that's on purpose). I'll try to finish at least one before NaNoWriMo, so I can post another review or two before my free time goes nonexistant, but no promises.
Thanks for reading. :)

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