An Introduction to Mary SuesI. What is a Mary Sue?
A Mary Sue is a common term that can be seen and found in any fandom. I find that a Mary Sue is usually an OC, or original character. However, there are several cases where the Mary Sue is a canon character, a character from the actual series the fandom is centered around. A Mary Sue is, simply put, a perfect, unrealistic, idealized character with too little negative flaws that can be exploitable or cause any misfortune to said character.
If your character is accused of being a Mary Sue, don't fret yet. Take a moment to analyze your character. I will type about how to identify and a step-by-step manuel about how to perform a Mary Sue Surgery. Let's first start with what kinds of Mary Sues there are before deeming if the OC you have is a Mary Sue.
II. Common Mary Sue Types
There are several types of Mary-Sues. If I try to list all of them here, this wouldn't really be an introduction to M
Mary-Sues: Part 1Mary-Sues: Things You Need to Know and What to do if you see ThemMary-Sues: Part 15 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
Mary-sues, Martha-sues, Marty-stus, Larry-Stus and Gary-Stus, we will all come across them at one point. Most of us have heard of them, some have been violently accused of making them via flaming, and others are still naïve to the terms. While people who have been on writing sites for years absolutely loathe them, most are inconsistent with an all-around definition. A majority claim that Mary-Sues are characters that are absolutely perfect in every shape, form and personality, while others just say that they are characters that are just too powerful, unique, or are so clichéd from past characters, and a few say they are self-inserts no matter how well-developed they are. Some on fan fiction sites even say that all Original Characters or Fan Characters (OCs) who are paired with a canon character or just take the spotlight are Mary-Sues. On the other side of the cr
Mary-Sue: Part 8Romeo and Gertrude?Mary-Sue: Part 83 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
“Names. What’s in a name, really? I mean, besides a bunch of letters or sounds strung together to make a word. Does a rose by any other name really smell as sweet? Would the most famous love story in the world be as poignant if it was called Romeo and Gertrude? Why is what we call ourselves so important?” (Julie Kagawa).
I’ll answer that question with another quote:
“I read in a book once that a rose by any other name would smell as sweet, but I've never been able to believe it. I don't believe a rose WOULD be as nice if it was called a thistle or a skunk cabbage” (L.M. Montgomery).
Names, despite its seemingly simplistic role in society, do have some importance, even in fiction. So how do you name your character? Names aren’t just an arrangement of letters that sound cool or unique; they have meaning, language, and culture behind them. Names are so important, that, in r
Mary-Sues: Part 2Mary-Sues Part 2: How Not to Write Like Your Character is a SueMary-Sues: Part 24 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
After reading Part 1 many, many times, I decided that another part would be helpful in that extra step. In Part 1, I described what a Mary-Sue/Marty-Sue etc. are, what they are not, and how to develop a proper character, in addition some of the reasons why some Suethors would create them (more or less on accident). This second part will go into more detail and give you tips on what not to write in your story that will tip your readers off that your characters might be underdeveloped, even if the character will be developed.
MS don’t have specific physical, behavior, cliché traits, but in combination to impossible physics laws in the universe, along with underdeveloped personality especially with other characters, they come out to be boring and annoying to readers. Unlike Part 1, I failed to mention that it also depends on how the writer writes the story itself that their beloved characters can
Mary-Sues: Part 3Mary-Sues: How Much Power is Too Much Power?Mary-Sues: Part 34 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
I’m sure everyone has heard that an obvious Mary-Sue is one that is too powerful, but no one has explained to me in enough detail when the line is crossed. “Oh, an original character can control all four elements? That’s way too powerful!” Since when? Since it became a clichéd idea? That idea was around since before Avatar: The Last Airbender aired on Nickelodeon. Aang, the main character in that show, along with eventually mastering all four elements, also practically came back from the dead a century later in the very first episode of the show, and no one called him a Gary-Stu (which he is not, I’m just saying that labeling a character over power is overused)! As I said in my past two guides, Mary-Sues aren’t about clichés, they’re about lack of explanation and key details that would help in their development of the cha
Mary-Sue: Part 4In a FightMary-Sue: Part 44 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
From a petty cat fight with slaps and hair pulling, to an action-packed superhero vs. super villain brawl, action scenes can start anywhere; however writing them effectively is harder than planning on who wins. It isn’t just about writing down who hit who, and if you don’t describe how a character handles the situation, you can accidentally make him or her seem stronger or even weaker than they should be. If the character seems too powerful without explanation, your audience will point the finger and label it a Mary-Sue, and you don’t want that (unless you’re purposefully writing a parody). Action scenes, whether it’s important to the overall plot or not, are an effective tool to establish your characters’ strengths and weaknesses—weakness being just as essential to highlight, if not more so, than strengths, but first, you have to know how to write a fight scene in order to know where to insert thes
Mary-Sue: Part 9The Eye of the TigerMary-Sue: Part 93 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
In all of my previous guides, I had assumed that most, if not all characters, were human, or mostly human, instead of thinking of the possibility of main characters, or even minor characters, being animals. Well, it doesn’t really matter, because, for the most part, the rules for creating human characters, including names and powers, writing presentation, and even romance would also apply to animals. There would just be a slight variation from humans, and this slight variation can make a world of difference in your writing.
A more common complaint I’ve seen about writers who write about animals at all, is that the animals, whether they are the main character, or whether they are a human’s pet, is that the animal is “too human.” While humans are technically animals too, what this complaint is really trying to say is that the animal has too many human-like qualities from having a voice to feeling human-
Mary-Sues: Part 6How to Review Character SheetsMary-Sues: Part 63 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
Everyone has there own way of making character sheets, whether you include them in stories, or just keep them as personal references. Some deem the looks more of a top priority than the skills or hobbies. Most include the “Likes and Dislikes” tab while others forgo it altogether. For describing how to analyze character sheets, I will be using my own personal template as an example.
Character sheets aren’t needed. If you include it, it’s usually the first sign of underdevelopment.
That’s not necessarily true. Lots of people make character sheets whether if it’s as simple as the name, age, and looks, and others make it more complex, but they’re used to help the author keep the facts straight while writing the story. It’s when people post the character sheets online that people make a big deal over it. When people put up the character sheet in th
Mary-Sues: Part 5Writing Realistically . . . According to the UniverseMary-Sues: Part 53 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
I’m sure I’ve told you that you have to be as realistic as possible in order for your character to seem, well, real. Believable. Three dimensional. Someone who can practically pop out of your writing or comic and interact with you. The truth is that was half of an exaggeration. Yes, be real, but only as real as the universe it takes place in is. If the universe is more manga-esque or cartoony where the average female can punch a burly person sky-high, and you create a character who doesn‘t do anything of that sort, or if you as the creator think you can‘t do that, then your character can become quite plain because you‘ll restrict yourself. Basically, be as real, or as loose, as the universe is.
If you’re a person who constantly makes the, “This is totally unrealistic” comment when reading a story, especially in fan ficti
Dos and Don'ts of fanfiction.DOS and DONTS (mostly DONTS) of fan fictionDos and Don'ts of fanfiction.6 years ago in General Non-Fiction More Like This
Before we begin, this is my opinion. Any similarity between my examples and your fan fiction is coincidental, but if they hit too close to home then well.
Yes, I am a grammar Nazi. I get angrier than I should when I see random apostrophes dotted around like those little coloured balls you put on cupcakes.
I dont claim to be a better writer than anyone; I just happen to have a decent grasp of the English language. My spelling and grammar arent perfect, but I do my best, which is a damn sight more than many writers on fanfiction.net.
Also, Im not saying that all fan fiction is bad (although some of it is painful) and Im not saying that just because a fan fiction breaks one of these rules, then its automatically bad. Ive admitted Im wrong before, and Ill do it again. Just not until this is over.
Right, lets get started.
Mary-Sue: Part 10How to Write Dream and Flashback SequencesMary-Sue: Part 103 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
For once, I couldn’t find any how-to guides that I liked so I could reference off of, so I’m on my own for this, otherwise this would probably be longer and probably be more organized. This should actually tell you something: there are practically no definite rules on how to write dream or flashback sequences. There are rules telling you not to write either of sequences, but screw that! If the only reason that having dreams and flashbacks being barred in fiction because they aren’t well-written, then keep writing them and get better at it until you get the hang of it. Telling someone not to do it at all because they suck at it is just telling them to give up before they try. In some stories, dreams and flashbacks are important for different reasons.
There’s no possible way I can tell you the right or wrong way of writing dreams. Some com
Is she Mary Sue? Clarifying Mary SueIs she Mary Sue?3 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
So, I realize that everyone has heard of Mary Sue characters, but the thing that bothers me is that Mary has never really been as clarified as she could be. Girls go around crying Mary Sue at every character with long pink hair, then go and create even worse Mary Sue characters in the false illusion that they're making nonMary Sue characters (or even anti-Sues) when in fact they're doing the opposite. Allow me to explain how this seems to happen.
First of all the term "Mary Sue" desperately needs to be clarified to these people, so this brings us to the very important question: What IS a Mary Sue?
At least everyone can agree on one thing. Mary Sues are characters that are so perfect it's annoying.
But. What do they mean by perfect? Everyone has different ideas of that, naturally. Unfortunately, this is how many fanfiction (and other) writers make their biggest mistakes.
When you hear the name Mary Sue what pops up in your mind? A be
Guide to (stereotypical) Personality ArchetypesMale:Guide to (stereotypical) Personality Archetypes2 years ago in Writing More Like This
1) The bad boy – He’s really tough, usually aloof and pushes people away. Few people actually get the “honor” of getting to know him. He usually has a secret past.
2) The adorkable dude – He’s upbeat and smiley, even though he’s just regarded as average or even a loser by the world. He has a heart of gold and is often the main hero of stories
3) The nerdy dude – Whether getting good grades is in or out, he never fails to get the GPA, do all the research, and ask questions in class. He’s usually into science or math.
4) The jock dude – He can play every sport known to man and be good at it too. He also watches sports, drinks Gatorade, and is a chick magnet for no apparent reason.
5) The weird dude – He’s usually into a lot of random nonconformist music, and believes in aliens and possibly karma. He could be completely superstitious, usually quiet.
6) The insane dude – He has this untamable force of energ