Del Floria's Interview with Kleenixwoman

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Interviews by Fans
Title: Del Floria's Interview with Kleenixwoman
Interviewer: Del Floria (Live Journal)
Interviewee: Kleenixwoman
Date(s): November 11, 2012
Medium: online
Fandom(s): Man from U.N.C.L.E.
External Links: full interview is here; Archive
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Del Floria's Interview with Kleenixwoman is an interview with a Man from U.N.C.L.E. fan.

It is part of a series at Del Floria's. See Del Floria's Interview Series.


Why MFU? What is it about the show that fuelled your creativity? The episodic nature and uneven tone grabbed me. I like TV shows where the story arc isn't very tight, where we get the idea that we're just looking at a few choice snapshots of the characters' lives, not following the whole thing -- it allows an imaginative reader to fill in the gaps with whatever they choose. And I like that the show seesaws from serious, realistic political dramas to ridiculous, fantastical plot devices and settings. It allows for a wide range of tone and mood that seldom veers from what's possible in the show. And, of course, there's the time it's set in, the issues it tackles -- so much that's touched upon, and so much that could have been.
What do you consider to be your greatest challenge in the creation process? Editing. I hate editing. I have a little trouble with plot, so getting a story with any kind of plot done it like having successfully set up a house of cards -- everything is balanced just right, and one shifted card could mean that the whole thing begins to tumble down. In the past, I've seldom had to edit my stories very much, as I preferred to shy away from intricate plots. Recently, I've been writing professionally (well, getting paid, anyway -- theoretically), and having an editor who won't let you get away with a makeshift or nonexistent plot is great exercise, but taxing.
What else would you like to say to your readers? Keep up with the kids. Thirteen-year-old girls on Tumblr are the future and they are the present. Be aware of what's happening in larger media fandom. Don't stagnate, don't stick to old tropes and old stereotypes. Keep informed. When new ideas about fandom and stories and art come your way, don't get scared, don't dismiss them because you don't understand.
How would you respond to a critic who says, “Oh, you write fan fiction. You’re not a real writer.” I write a lot of original stuff, so nobody's ever been able to get me on that. I do have very well-meaning friends who've asked me when I'm going to give up that silly fanfiction stuff. My preferred response would be "When are you going to give up playing video games?", but the last time someone asked me that, I didn't want to get into a fight that would lead to me having to sleep on the couch, so I just said something about the fandom community and then complimented her on her shoes. It's unfortunate that there's this assumption that for writing to be worthwhile, it has to be monetized eventually -- that your ultimate goal is to sell your poems, your novel, your autobiography. (And the idea that this is soooo damn easy to do.) Nobody asks people who like to bake cookies for their friends why they don't open up a bakery, nobody asks people who like to knit scarves why they don't sell them to a consignment shop.
If you could do it over, what one story would you erase from the time continuum… and why? I'd slap my middle-school self upside the head and tell her to keep her goddamn Mary Sue stories in a drawer.