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Medium Dawn Felagund of the Fountain

Silm Fandom Survey, Just for Fun

The (Cyber) Bag of Weasels

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"About as much fun as a bag of weasels"...when I first saw this Irish adage, it made me think of the life of a writer: sometimes perilous, sometimes painful, certainly interesting. My paper journal has always been called "The Bag of Weasels." This is the Bag of Weasels' online home.

Silm Fandom Survey, Just for Fun

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Elves Are Cool
Because I am a geek and wonder about the numerical breakdown of such things.... 8^B

Last time there was a bit of an issue with this so just a reminder: You do not have to answer all of the questions in order to play. So if none of the answers describe your feelings or you just don't want to answer, go ahead and click "Submit Poll"; the questions you do answer will be submitted to the totals.

This is just for fun, so no pressure. If you have ideas for future questions, let me know. (Jenni, I didn't forget yours; I'll put it on the next one!) The past poll and its results can be viewed here

Poll #748700 Fandom Poll, Part Two!

The word "elfling"...

Should never be used in a story. EVER.
Isn't my choice word for a little Elf, but to each her own.
Doesn't really affect me either way.
Is a fine word to describe the indescribable cuteness of little Elves.
WTF is an "elfling?"

The essay "Laws and Customs among the Eldar" (LaCE) is...

Evil, and I ignore it at all costs.
Not canon, but there are bits of it that are interesting or good fodder for stories.
Is a pretty good indication of what Tolkien wanted the canon to be.
Should be obeyed to the letter.
WTF is LaCE??

Your favorite non-Feanorian Elf of the House of Finwe is

Finrod Felagund
Ereinion Gil-Galad
Someone else, but LJ won't let Dawn add more options

The best non-canon OTP (one true pairing) is

One that Dawn couldn't list 'cause LJ won't give her more options.
Wow, Dawn is really f***ed up!

Mary Sue...

Is a meaningless, often vindictive label
Never hurt anyone. Live and let live, I say!
Is just the sign of kids having fun.
Is just the sign of a bad writer.
Should die.
WTF is "Mary Sue?"
Makes a hella good Easter egg.

Who is your favorite Vala?

Melkor (Morgoth)
Namo (Mandos)
Irmo (Lorien)

  • (grown-up) Eluréd/Elurín

    *sheepish grin*

    I guess however f***ed up Dawn is, Eni is more so... ;)
    • Hehe! But I knew this...about Elured/Elurin, that is. ;) Actually, I had them on the list, but then I thought of others that seemed more probable for people to vote, and I had to take them off, since LJ restricted me to 15 choices. Boo, LJ. :^P
  • I love your polls Dawn! I was so tempted to answer the 'WTF' ones and the 'lj wouldn't let Dawn put more' answers just cuz they made me laugh!

    • Yay! *huggles back* My polls are a success! :^D The "LJ won't let Dawn" answers came because last time, I got a slew of "complaints" about how I missed this character or that place or whatever, so I put it up front this time: blame LJ, not Dawn. ;)

      And the "WTF?" choices are for my RL family and friends who like to play in my polls but haven't a clue about Tolkien!
  • Awwww. You should've used ticky boxes, because on most of those, I want to give more than one answer! *cries*
  • Wow! Great survey, but so many choices! the first two were easy, well--the first three, really. But the best non-canon OTP was so difficult! I mean, you'd think Maedhros/Fingon would be an obvious one for me, but I chose Caranthir/Haleth because of the awesome "The Choice of Spirits" that you wrote, and because I'm working on a story about them myself! Perhaps you should have had a poll for favorite slash pairing and then one for het. Because I really feel bad about letting Maedhros & Fingon down. *Sorry, guys!* And then it was really, really hard picking my favorite Vala. I love both Irmo and Estë but because I could pick only one, I chose Estë. *Sorry, Irmo baby* Interesting that most people chose Mandos. I like him too, but not as much as Irmo & Estë.
    • Yes, I thought that Mae/Fin would easily take the lead for Best AU OTP! But Caranthir/Haleth is currently ahead in the polls. Methinks that they are gaining in popularity because of some of the wonderful stories that have been done about them. That is how I discovered the pairing--through Unsung Heroine's stories--and I've since seen other really nicely done stories about them as well.

      And my flist is literally filled with Caranthir fangurls! :^D

      I'm also really surprised that Namo is in the lead for Favorite Vala! This I did not expect; I voted for him but mainly because I got a soft spot for him when I wrote "Return to Me," the Finrod-reembodiment story. I'm opposite of you: I also like Irmo, just not quite as much as Mandos. I found a Irmo/Namo slash at ff.net one time.... o.O I even thought of putting them on the list, but I didn't have room. >:^P
  • Another comment: Wow. Fingon is winning the favorite n0n-Feanorion poll. You should make a new one that divides them up. You could have "Favorite Resident of Doriath, Nargothrond, Gondolin or Tirion." Whaddya think?
  • Have filled it out. Now some comments...

    The word "elfling"...
    I guess I want to say something like "not my thing, but like most words can work very well with certain writing styles/tones/voices: however, it is IMO incompatible with Tolkienesque High English."

    The essay "Laws and Customs among the Eldar" (LaCE) is...
    I really wanted to say "...a pretty good indication of what Tolkien wanted the canon to be, but: only a draft; open to a wide variety of interpretations; often misquoted."

    Mary Sue...
    I am of the opinion that everything can be handled well if the writing is strong enough, and in parody even if it isn't, but Mary Sues are harder to handle well than most other tropes. That said, all of us have Mary Sues in our heads, don't we?
    • Elfling: I'm much of the same opinion as you. The word tends not to work for me and I can't ever see myself using it--except in parody--but there are certainly stories I've read that used it where I didn't even notice, so it must have fit the writer's style.

      I included this question because I've heard some pretty fanatical opinions of this word before, and I wanted to see if I had any of these nuts people on my flist. :^P

      LaCE: Well said.

      Mary Sue: I've read stories that I know some would stamp "Mary Sue" and have done with it, and the stories are entertaining, certainly, and also well written. I fit the first two choices: I think that it is largely an empty label and also that the genre is harmless and the big deal that people make about "Mary Sue" fanfic is largely unwarranted. As evidence of the first, I once had a discussion going around here where multiple definitions of the term arose; it seems convenient to slap on any OC that a reader doesn't like. All things considered, though, I've never understood how difficult it is to click the BACK button and exit a story that a person doesn't like.

      I certainly have Mary Sues in my head, yes, though more original characters than those I put into fanfic.
  • Ah, Mary Sues! I don't like them, and I usually don't like the stories or writing they show up in... but what's funny is that it seems like the more various canon nazis rant about them like they were forced to sit and read every Mary Sue they've ever came across, the less I mind that people write them and post them on the 'net. :P

    We should get Finrod Fan T-shirts or something. :D
    • Yes! Finrod fan T-shirts! :^D

      I think it's pretty obvious that I'm found of the old Felagund. *nods at username* ;)

      Most "Mary Sues" are probably not stories that I would read, but I find myself amused--like you--at the amount of hatred that these stories earn from people. Really. What is the mystique about hitting the BACK button on the browser? Actually, I usually find that it's fairly obvious from the summary if a writer is writing to indulge personal fantasies (ie, "Mary Sue") or not. The purple-haired, unicorn-riding heroine winning Legolas' undying affection is usually a good indicator. ;)

      I've always thought it interesting the similarities between MS and PWP...and the different ways in which people react to them. MS seems to be a safe outlet for harmless fantasies, usually by teenaged girls. PWP seems to be a safe outlet for naughty (but harmless) fantasies by horny old women. ;) Yet people who read and write PWP are often the first ones to shout about how "Mary Sue" should be banned from archives, et cetera.

      It seems that most writers go through an MS stage, especially when we're young. I did, for certain. Maybe people's discomfort with MS is more how uncomfortably similar it is to their early writing! :^P
  • I like Mary Sues when I have a bunch of free time and feel like putting something Sil in my paper journal.
    Not to mention Mary Sue makes a hella good Easter egg.

    DAWN! Can I friend you please? :O!
    • Yes! Please do! I will friend you back (of course). :)

      A lot of the stories in my head are original-fic Mary Sues for certain. That's why they stay in my head. ;) But they are a fun outlet on long cartrips and such when I need something to think about.

      Mary Sue Easter Eggs has a warehouse in Baltimore, and whenever we pass it--with the big "Mary Sue" sign on the side--I have a good chuckle.
  • *sings*

    Erestor and Nienna sittin' in a tree
    First comes love, then comes, er, binding/bonding (or something)
    Then comes, er, some elfling in a baby, er, cradle.

    Huh? What were we talking about?

  • Elfling! *faints* I've seen it used well, actually, but it jars on my nerves. It's not-- Tolkienesque. I usually use "elf-child" or something. Or just "child".

    LACE is... interesting. I realize that the reason some might not be fond of it is because of the problem it poses to MaeFin slash (and Celegorm/Aredhel too, really), but it's a pretty good indicator.

    I wavered for a long time on the Favourite Character and OTP ones. For the first, I had a hard time deciding between Fingon and Aredhel. Fingon because he's nice, brave, what-have-you (I remember someone calling him "Fingon the Good Prince". I forgot who). But I picked Aredhel in the end, because I figured Fingon would get enough love from everyone else.

    I almost picked Celegorm/Aredhel as my OTP (since I write it. No, it's not as bizarre as it sounds), but switched to Caranthir/Haleth at the last moment, just because. :) I had a hard time choosing between the Valar too, but I picked Vaire because I'm a sucker for crafts.
    • "Elfling" is certainly not my word of choice. My head doesn't spin and eject pea soup or anything when I see it--and I find that it works in some stories--but I can't see myself using it aside from parody.

      LaCE has good tidbits in it for me, and not the usual tidbits that people like. I really like the notion that Elven spirits can remain on Arda, for example, and resist the call of Mandos. I don't like so much the "sex equals marriage for all of ETERNITY" nor the notion that Elves choose when to conceive their children. I use the former in my stories sometimes because it is so well known in the fandom that it is easier (yes, I am admitting to being a sheep on this!); the latter I reject completely. Also, it seems that for every "rule" in LaCE, there are exceptions, so it seems very flexible even if you follow it. Finwe had more than one spouse, for example, and for most of the Finwions (especially Feanorians), marriage and children were not the only way of life.

      I chose Finrod for favorite character because...it's Finrod! He's cute, dependable, brave, rich, has a spectacular system of caves, and does not seem quite as rash as some of his cousins. *huggles Finrod* I like him enough to borrow his name!

      Haleth/Caranthir is currently winning, which really surprised me. I'm also surprised that Mandos is winning. I mean, I voted for him, but I always thought myself a little weird in liking him so much. *shrugs* Maybe not!
  • Your favorite non-Feanorian Elf of the House of Finwe is

    What kind of sick mean person makes me pick just one?! ;P

    Wow, Dawn is really f***ed up!

    I almost put this, but that fact doesn't really have to do with the question! :P
    • What kind of sick mean person makes me pick just one?!

      ME, that's who! Mwahahahaha! Mwhahahaha! MWHAHAHAHA!

      (Okay, can you tell I'm a little excitable today? :^D)

      I almost put this, but that fact doesn't really have to do with the question!

      Nope, but I have to add choices like that lest you all start taking me seriously. :^P
  • I had to choose the first option in the elfling question. I cannot help it, but I simply don't like that word. I find it far too cutesy and sugary and it makes me want to puke --- most of the time (probably because the writing accompanying this word is often also far too cutesy and sugary). Because, as tehta mentioned, I can actually remember stories where it worked and thus I didn't really mind. But hey, people don't say mortal-ling either, do they? ;-P

    The non-Feanorian elf was hard on me. I ended up picking Fingolfin, if only because his challenge to Morgoth remains one of my favourite parts of the Silm ever.

    I've picked the kids options on Mary Sues. A lot of them simply seem to be nothing more than that. "Me and my friend fall into M-e" etc... (we know how it will go on in 99 per cent of these cases, don't we?). It's really not my cup of tea, especially since often it seems to be accompanied by bad writing, horrid spelling and a blatant ignorance for grammar, so I usually ignore those stories, though I sometimes amuse myself at ff.net's "Just In" page by searching for the most hilarious plot lines. I'd never flame them though and I'm faaar too lazy to offer concrit, so most of the times I keep my mouth shut, especially since my stories when I began writing had all blatantly Sueish female characters (on the internet wasn't really an option for public display, back then). Who knows where the Mary Sue-authors will be in 10 years or so? Maybe we'll all be impressed one day? :)

    I chose Namo as my favourite Vala. But it was a close draw between him, Irmo and Orome. :)

    I'm not going to comment on what OTP I chose since I'm awfully predictable. ;)
  • LOL my OTP is Glorfindel/Ecthelion, but Celegorm/Luthien *is* pretty cool too! Not that many people write it. Heh.
    • Yes, after I posted, I realized that I'd forgotten ol' Echo and Glory! I ought to be ashamed of myself, with you and Tehta on my flist and all. ;)
  • Ah, another very interesting survey... and the people who said that the choices were hard are absolutely right...

    #1. I'm OK with elfling. It does not make me cringe if it's used well and in combination with other things that suggest little, pointy-eared cuteness.

    #2. LACE is evol, but I went with the "it has some interesting bits in it, that can be used in writing fanfic."

    #3. My favorite non-Feanorian? How about everyone else in the Finwe family except Orodreth and Glaldriel?! Toyrn between Fingon, Turgon and Finrod, I actually chose Fingolfin. 'Cause I really like the guy. >;)

    #4. The horror of this question!!! I selected Maedhros/Fingon, too, but you know that Feanor/Fingolfin is Teh Bomb. As is Celegorm/Curufin, Celegorm/Aredhel and/or Luthien (Whoa, that would be one interesting threesome to read&write!), Maedhros/Maglor, Amrod/Amras and Finrod/Turgon. But Beleg/Turin... *gags* And I don't like Caranthir/Haleth either, though the stories about them are truly wonderful. You know where I stand as far as Edain are concerned...

    #5. Been there, done that.... might still do it again. But at least, now I can recognize a Mary Sue, even in my own writing.

    #6. I would have chosen Namo too. He's just... cool! But I don't want to upset Teh Noldo. So I went with Orome. ;)
    • #1: Agreed. :) I would never use it in my own writing--aside from parody--and it's not my favorite, but I am not one who simply can't stand to see it in a story.

      #2: I despise in LaCE the idea of sex = marriage, the idea that Elves never fool around aside from with their spouse, the idea that they choose when to conceive their children, and the notion that begetting/bearing children wearies the female but not so much the male.

      I like the bits about how spirits can choose to reject the call of Mandos and remain "haunting" the places they loved in Middle-earth. This unleashes plotbunnies untold for me! :^D

      #4: Hehe, yes, I do! So far as Elf/Edain pairings go, I'm really only entranced by Caranthir/Haleth, thanks to Unsung Heroine and her wonderful stories about them.

      I'm boring. I chose Mae/Fin, but I find a lot of the other options interesting too. ;)

      #5: Me too! Every one of my female protagonists used to be a artistically inclined, activist-type with oppressive parents or living in an oppressive society. Of course, she always triumphed. ;) I really think that it's a stage most young writers go through. I'd bet that even those who believe that Mary Sue is the underlying cause of brain cancer, rising homocide rates, and global warming have notebooks buried somewhere....

      #6: Orome's fun! After Jenni's "Blowing Valaroma" and having written him into my stupid Sil play in much the same way, I'll always see him as sort of a comic character. I should challenge myself to write serious!Orome sometime.

      I chose Namo. I've always liked him, all sullen and pronouncing dooms and such. :^P I'm really surprised to see how many others are of a like mind!
  • Celegorm/Luthien - that's the way world should be looking like! That as the beginning in the Tale of Tinuviel, I pity Tolkien make two characters from this early Beren and put Celegorm only into troubles. And made Luthien kind of... necrophiliac! Let's not be that romantic - who being immortal falls in love with ill, dying organism?
    Of course if not Celegorm, she should have chosen Daeron, because the another great opportunity is not on the list - Maedhros/Luthien. That would be fantastic :D Though still I keep my fingers crossed for Celegorm, this boy deserves love! They could talk to birds together everafter ;)

    Oh yes, I haven't chosen Mae/Fin, how bad I am! Simply because I have chosen what should be in canon but isn't, Mae/Fin is totally out of canon and my elves don't follow that path anyway. It exists in a few great stories, but doesn't belong to my universe.
    • Luthien as a necrophiliac?? LMAO!!! That's great! I'd certainly never thought of it that way before. Try as I might, that is one story and pairing that I cannot get into. (Beren/Luthien, that is.) I just don't really see why he's so great that she fell helplessly in love with him. Seems to me he's always almost getting himself killed and she's saving his ass. Well, maybe it was one of those things that was Meant to Be.

      Jenni (digdigil) wrote Melian/Celegorm once. "A Song on the Air," it was called, and it followed the life of their daughter. I did the beta for it what seems like ages ago, and it remains one of my favorites of her stories.

      Mae/Fin doesn't belong to my universe either, though I have caved and written it before. I chose it mostly because I've read some fantastic stories about that pairing and it seems one of those with the most interesting "evidence." Really, a lot of the others would intrigue me more to write (since I can't help but get the feeling that Mae/Fin has been done before, that I have nothing new to say), but I will admit that I have a fondness for reading about them. ;)
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