Fandom

10 Things We Need Explained In The Sequel To ‘Carry On’

 Image obtained via GoodReads

Image obtained via GoodReads

About a month ago Rainbow Rowell announced that a sequel to Carry On would be released in 2020 titled Wayward Son. I, and many others, were extremely excited and surprised to hear this announcement. Carry On ended with plenty of questions, but none that had to be answered. The book was an entire story on its own, so news that another book was on the way was even more exciting.

Now that I’ve calmed down a bit from my intense excitement at the news, I’ve had time to think about the big questions I’ve had since I finished reading the first book.

Note: Obviously there will be spoilers for the novel, Carry On, in this post.

 

1. How will Baz’s family react to the news that he’s dating Simon Snow?

Class differences are a huge theme in the novel. Baz comes from an extremely old family, and Simon decidedly does not. Simon was, for a long time, working with the Mage, who Baz’s family had a great deal of contention with. How will his family react? Will he be accepted, rejected entirely, or somewhere in between? Baz has even mentioned that he didn’t think his family would accept him being gay. I think this is the question I need the answer to most.

 

2. What are the societal and political ramifications from the revelation about the things the Mage did?

The Mage did a lot of shady things; too many for me to begin to summarize here. I can’t imagine the entire country doesn’t learn about the role he played in the death of Baz’s mother, among everything else. With the class struggles already such a big part of this society, how will this knowledge impact the way the average person lives?

 

3. Baz and Simon have had a tumultuous relationship over the years. Has that continued into their romantic relationship?

It is simply impossible to believe that these two confessed their feelings and it was smooth sailing from there. First off, that isn’t how any relationship works. Secondly, Baz actively talks about killing Simon in the book. They have a lot of issues to work through -- you can’t just ignore them because you start dating.

 

4. Baz is a vampire. How does this come into play in their relationship?

Does Baz’s status as a vampire become common knowledge, or is he still hiding it? And how does it complicate not only their relationship, but their lives overall? And yes obviously I want to know if Simon becomes a food source (you all are wondering too).

 

5. Do Simon and Penny make good roommates? Is Simon planning to move in with Baz?

Depending on how far in the future the next book is set, Simon may already be living with Baz. I actually hope he’s living with Penny. I feel as if the two of them would be great roommates, and plus then we’d get to see the boys transition from boyfriends to boyfriends living together.

 

6. What happened to Agatha? Did she find the magic-free life she wanted?

I really enjoyed Agatha from a character perspective. She felt like a real person, though not a person I’d want to spend much time with. But her thoughts and desires make sense, and I’m curious to see how trying to live a magic-free life worked out for her.

 

7. Does Simon ever find out the Mage was his biological father?

I need him to discover this. I’m so eager to see the emotional fallout that would come from this knowledge.

 

8. What are Simon and Baz doing with their careers?

Simon has no magic and wings and a tail to deal with. Baz seems like he’d get an excellent job, but what is Simon doing?

 

9. How has Watford changed?

Or has it changed at all? The Mage is gone so of course, something must be different...at least you’d think so. Has the process for admitting students changed? How are classes being run? What new policies are being put in place to keep students safe?

 

10. How is Simon dealing with not having magic anymore?

Simon had a lot more problems with controlling his magic than the average person, but he still had it and could feel it. Now that he used all of his magic to stop the Humdrum, how is he dealing with life without magic?

 

Carry On and Fangirl are the books that made me realize that I could write books about fandom. I’d always assumed that this type of book would never be published, but now I’ve taken my idea of a fangirl accidentally finding her way into her favorite book series and created a manuscript with it. And I actually think I can get it published.

What are the questions you want answered in the sequel to Carry On?

The Best Of E3 For A Casual Gamer

The Best Of E3 For A Casual Gamer.png

This post will be updated daily until E3 is over.

I’m what you would probably call a casual gamer. I play games a lot, and I have been playing them as long as I can remember. I started with the Super Nintendo in the 1990s and currently own 6+ consoles. But I’d still consider myself a casual gamer, mostly because I don’t game daily, or even weekly.

Instead I have what I call “video game phases” where I get utterly obsessed with video games. I’m in the middle of one now -- I am playing Nier Automata for the first time and I just got the first ending. Actually, I’d say that this is my favorite game I’ve played… ever.

But unlike hardcore gamers, every announcement at E3 doesn’t mean something to me. I often have to look up games that are being referenced during other announcements. But I absolutely love games, and so I want to share the news and announcements I’m most excited about, as a kind-of-casual-gamer.

Fallout 76

I am not a big fan of shooting games, but I love the Fallout series. The third game has easily been my favorite. As you may imagine, I was pumped to hear an unexpected announcement about a new Fallout game.

It’s a prequel to all the other games and it’s going to be huge (and man, Fallout games are already huge). You play as some of the first people to leave the vaults to enter the wasteland. GAH!

But the game is online. You can play solo, but I just hate online multiplayer games. I’m really, quite bad at video games, so my lack of skills being displayed to the public makes me unhappy. I’m just glad it’s not only a PC game since I certainly don’t have a computer that can handle a Fallout title.

Oh and it comes out IN NOVEMBER!

Elder Scrolls 6

All we know is that it exists, but yay, it exists!

Starfield

It’s a new franchise by Bethesda (yay) and it looks like it will take place in space (yay). It’s going to be single player, thank goodness. The graphics look beautiful. I’m hoping there will be a lot of planet exploring, but we’ll have to wait and see.

Cyberpunk 2077

So, this game looks extremely cool. The graphics look beautiful, and the game looks really interesting, but I am a bit hesitant because it is being developed by some of the staff that created The Witcher 3. People loved that game, but I just couldn’t get into it. I’ll have to play a demo or rent this one before I buy it, to make sure it’s worth me dropping a bunch of money on.

Sea Of Solitude

This game from EA looks like it’s going to be completely beautiful and heartbreaking. The story focuses on a woman who is so sad and lonely that she is turned into a monster. The trailer looks really interesting. The game looks somewhat surreal and I’m loving the style. It comes out in 2019 and I really wanna pick it up.

 

The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit

I’ve talked about the Life is Strange series before and so hearing that a new game by the same developers caught my attention.

And then, it was announced the choices you make in this short, free game will have a direct impact on Life is Strange 2. The data from this standalone game will transfer to the Life is Strange sequel once it has been released.

It’s giving us a look at the world of Life is Strange 2, the new powers that will be in the game, and the world outside of Arcadia Bay. Who knows what hints we’ll find for the next game in this demo? I’m so excited!

Ghost of Tsushima

I love Japan, I love beautiful graphics, and this game has both. I also absolutely love sword fighting in games so it’s nice to see here. The game is absolutely gorgeous, so I am excited to try it when it comes out.

Sable

The art for this game looks very interesting, but not much has been revealed about it except that you play as a wanderer on a foreign planet. I love games like this, so I need to update my computer situation before this title drops.

That Time Two People Wrote Fanfiction About My Novel (While I Was Still Writing It)

How do we determine success as authors? Is it when we get published? When we make the Best Sellers List? Or maybe is it when we hit it big by getting a movie deal for our books?

Of course, all three of these are things that I would like to see. My goal is to become a published author and see my novel in book shops across the country. And if my book is a best seller, that means more people are reading and enjoying the project I dedicated so much time to. Plus getting a movie deal would be pretty amazing, as unlikely as it is.

I’ve mentioned before how I want people to write fanfiction about my novels, and just a couple of weeks ago I achieved that goal.

But my novel isn’t even published yet. In fact I’ve not even finished writing it!

 Part of the fanfiction my wife wrote!

Part of the fanfiction my wife wrote!

The novel in question is FanFact, which still has about 10,000 words to go before it’s complete. I’m hoping to have the rough draft done this month (though my trip to Acen could make this tough), but that hasn’t stopped my friends from writing stories about my book.

So far, two people have read my partially-finished manuscript in its entirety; my wife and a friend of mine from college who has a Masters degree in literature/writing. My wife is my target audience, so I love getting her opinion on my story, plot, and characters to see if it is resonating. My friend is highly critical and an excellent writer, so I highly value their opinions.

Both of them wrote fanfiction about my novel several weeks ago. My friend presented a fanfiction to me along with their critique of the novel-in-progress. My wife wrote her own fanfiction at our writing retreat in Lake Geneva. Both of the fanfictions were a lot of fun, and both made me incredibly flattered.

Because people writing fanfiction about my work means they care enough about my characters to spend their own time creating something that brings them no gains. They can’t even publish the fanfiction online because the novel doesn’t even officially exist! That means they both simply liked my story enough that they wanted to write something for themselves, for me, and for each other to read.

I have to say that’s pretty damn flattering.

Authors don’t write for fame. So many of the things we write won’t even be seen by another person, let alone millions of people. Even authors who get published and sell a lot of books probably can’t live off that income alone. While being a full-time author is the dream of me, and many, financially it simply isn’t very likely. What I want is to write books that make people feel things, and I really want to write books that can create a fandom, not just fans.

The Difference Between Having Fans & Fandom

Ok, stick with me here, because there actually is a difference.

It is possible to have fans without having fandom, though the two are similar. Fans are people who enjoy a particular piece of media. Fandom, on the other hand, is an entire subculture dedicated to a piece of media.

A fandom is referred to as its own entity. “The Sherlock fandom is crazy.” “The Boku No Hero Academia Fandom is huge!” “The Merlin Fandom is still around, but it’s pretty quiet now.” In that sense, fandom refers to how active fans are being about a piece of media, rather than just enjoying it.

I’m a fan of the Marvel universe, but I’m not a part of the Marvel fandom. I don’t read the lore, I don’t create or consume fan-created media, and I don’t keep updated on all the latest news.

Now the Sherlock fandom, well, it got me my wife so I really like the Sherlock fandom.

I’d love to see more fanfiction for my work, and I’d also love to see fanart and cosplay as well! I want there to be a community around my books.

I also feel that fandom has become more widely accepted. In my lifetime I have never been bullied for being involved in fandom. Certainly there are plenty of people who aren’t involved in fandom who are my age, but “Normals” don’t seem to find fandom all that strange like they used to.

The Fanfiction

My college friend wrote the first fanfiction for FanFact (which upset my wife a lot) as part of a critique for my manuscript. The logic was by reading this fanfiction I could get a better idea of how my readers were characterizing my...well, characters!

This fanfiction focused on Blane and Orion. I don’t think Orion has been mentioned on this blog before, but I wasn’t surprised this friend wrote about Orion. The story mentions Liam and Clara and could actually fit into the canon timeline of FanFact, which was really cool to see.

My wife, on the other hand, didn’t involve Clara at all. Her story would have taken place before Clara made it to the world, and interestingly, also involved Orion. Deanna did really well understanding my character’s voices, probably because I talk about my characters all the time.

Impacts on FanFact

The main takeaway I got from these two fanfictions is that I need to spend a bit more time developing my character's’ personalities. While my wife knew exactly how to write my characters my writing friend didn’t, which means I need to spend less time talking about these characters and more time interjecting their personality into the text.

I’d already planned to write more about Orion, but the fact that my friend and wife wrote him completely differently showed me I really need to work on developing him more.

And having people write fanfiction about my novel inspires me to keep working on it.

Want an exclusive look at Blane and Liam? Sign up for my email newsletter to get a free short story that takes place during The Hierarchy of Magic, before Clara finds herself as part of the story!