Working Stiffs Interview with Pywacket

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Interviews by Fans
Title: Working Stiffs Interview with Pywacket
Interviewer: Katie Harris
Interviewee: Pywacket
Date(s): July 21, 2001
Medium: online
Fandom(s): X-Files
External Links: interview is here; reference link
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Working Stiffs Interview with Pywacket was conducted in 2001.

It was posted to the website Working Stiffs.

Other Interviews in the Series

Some Excerpts

I started reading XF reviews and then fanfic, probably around the time of FTF. It took me years to get up the courage to write fanfic. I started writing about two years ago, originally under my own name. I've regretted that but was reluctant to go through the hassle of changing the name on all the stories and all the places those stories ended up. I'd been reading erotica almost from the beginning of my XF days, but was really timid about writing it under my own name. I know other authors who do it, and I think that is really brave. Finally, after hearing the thoughts of other authors who branched out and wrote alternative fics under pseudonyms, I decided to do it. Took a couple of years, though.

I began writing under my own name. I'm just not comfortable with writing erotica as myself. It seems too personal. If any of my employees, or my kids should find my stories under my regular name, I would be a little embarrassed only because fan fiction has a bit of a stigma as bizarre behavior, but I wouldn't worry about the stories themselves. I would feel very differently if they found the erotica. I'm not ashamed of the writing, but I would feel very exposed. ... In Impure Thoughts, which in many ways is the most explicit of the stories, I consciously tried to avoid any phrasing that might be picked out as typical for my regular name. I went back and rewrote a couple of lines that sounded too "me." The other two stories are much more typical of what I write under my regular name, just kicked up a whole bunch in the graphic aspects. I don't mind that much if people figure it out, and I will "out" myself occasionally....

As long as my name and Pywacket don't become linked anywhere concrete, I'm okay with it. I'm proud of what I've written under both names. It is rather "freeing" though. I don't use a beta under Pywacket--I've had friends offer, but I still feel too self-conscious. I do a kind of self beta--letting the story rest for a day or two and then attacking it like a tough beta would. I still miss things, though. I couldn't have written Impure Thoughts under my own name. I think people would have figured out the little twist at the end much more quickly if they had read my other stories. Mulder picking a woman up in a bar wouldn't have been as plausible.

I've never been upset by the ambiguity of the show. If I wanted everything spelled out for me, I'd watch soap operas. The chemistry is there for us in buckets. I tend to stay in the subtle end of the pool--hardly anything is ever fixed in my stories. They are still the flawed, broken people they were, just trying one day at a time to connect. Like the majority of the people I know in RL.

I think that MSR writers are just more realistic than 1013. At one point, having two people sacrifice their personal lives and eschew a romantic relationship was cool and noble. They were both young. There was time. If the show had lasted the three seasons 1013 probably thought it would, it would have been fine. But 8 long years later, they aren't young. The sacrifice seems less noble and far more pathetic. Why the heck shouldn't attractive people who are obviously in love come together? After a while, the machinations to keep them apart become silly. Also, with the show finally allowing them to grow together, non-MSR stories just feel dated to me.