It’s been two months since the official launch of Saltwater Spirits.
Since then, I’ve been trying to juggle work, parenting, and life. Throughout it all, I have continued writing and boy, has it been a real doozy.
Some people have asked if I’ll be writing a sequel to Saltwater Spirits. While I’m not actively working on a follow-up to Norma’s story at the moment, I have a working outline for a story in the same world that follows another character in the book. It’s always been my intention to expand the world of Saltwater Spirits.
However, those plans are on hold for now as I explore other creative avenues. A month ago, a story gripped me out of nowhere, and I wrote 130 pages in 12 days. That’s ten pages of original writing a day, averaging 7 hours per day spent writing!
I hardly slept. I only ate for sustenance. I would write from when my kid went to bed into the wee hours of the morning.
The story is fan-fiction set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe or as fans know it, the MCU.
If you asked me a few years ago what I thought of fan-fiction, I would probably have shrugged. If I was feeling particularly crabby that day, I might have said that people who write fanfic are crazy super-fans with nothing better to do with their lives.
As it usually goes with uninformed judgments about the world around us, my past view probably tells you a lot more about who I was years ago than what fan-fiction is.
Thankfully, when I started writing fan fiction earlier this year as a creative avenue to cope with the rising stress of writing to get published, the people I told were patient, kind and even a little curious. Their kindness gave me the confidence to share my story and most importantly, keep writing.
The thing is, my foray into fan fiction was inevitable. I read a lot as a child and watched a ton of movies and TV shows. I always loved the characters I read in books or saw on-screen. While I never wrote fan-fiction as a young’un, I would find myself trying to make the characters come to life after the final sentence in a book or end credits. I used to do it through fashion — wearing my favorite Disney characters on t-shirts or later as a teenager, channeling Hermione in a pink dress for a school dance. Now that I’m an adult and have started embracing my role and journey as a writer, I write stories with characters that already exist and that I know and love.
Full disclosure: I had given up on watching the Marvel movies. They all seemed to follow the same script. A few years ago, a friend described it as junk food for the brain, and I tended to agree. So when my partner insisted that I watch the latest one, Avengers: Endgame, with him in theaters in April earlier this year, I thought to myself: Hell. No.
But after ten years of watching those movies with him, I figured watching the final one wouldn’t hurt. Maybe it would make watching those other 21 movies mean something.
As luck would have it, I left the theater feeling quite impressed if not with the movie itself, with the scope of the story the writers of the MCU managed to tell – 10 years and 22 movies in. I was also left with a distinct impression that a particular character’s stories had a gaping romance arc.
So I sat down and decided to fix it. I created a story where this character explores love and romance and as a result, lives a fuller life than they were given a chance to on-screen.
The story is still a work in progress. I find myself needing to resolve it until it fits the end of Avengers: Endgame.
For now, I’ve downloaded the first section of my story into Wattpad, an online community of readers and writers to publish stories in different genres, including fan-fiction. For now, it seems to be a place where this story can exist and be shared with you.
Here’s a little teaser description if you’re interested:
Everyone knows that Peggy Carter is Steve Rogers’ best girl. But what if before he returned to her in 1945, Steve fell in love in the modern era?
Inspired by the Marvel Cinematic Universe, this story imagines the possibility of a meaningful and thrilling romance for one of its most beloved characters.
You can read Part 1 here on Wattpad.
It’s my first piece of fan-fiction, so do let me know if you read the story and tell me what you think. Love it? Hate it? Curious to read Part 2?
Get in touch with me in the comments below or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I’ll be finishing the rest of the story in the meantime.