How to evade making a Mary SueThe Mary Sue Guide
This guide is meant to introduce and/or inform you of this threat that is currently attacking storywritting, drawing, Original Character creation (OCs) and fandom/fanfiction in general, not to say Originality itself!
During the course of this guide, you will learn what a Mary Sue is, youll identify one when sighted and, most importantly, you will not create one and hopefully you will help others in the subject, so they dont create Mary Sues too.
I) Mary Sue 101:
-What is a Mary Sue?
Mary Sue is a title given to characters in fanfiction (and sometimes original, professional work) who are simply perfect: They are beautiful, smart, friendly, always willing to help for nothing in exchange even if they can die, powerful, important in one way or other...you get the point (I will explain on emphasis later). These characters are often created in Roleplaying forums/chatrooms or simply as OCs with a storyline
How to Avoid Creating a Mary Sue TutorialHiya!How to Avoid Creating a Mary Sue Tutorial5 years ago in Writing More Like This
While reading manymanymany fan fictions and original stories with varying levels, it popped into my mind a few tricks to decrease the Mary Sue aspects from characters. I've sorted the tricks to different categories, hope they are useful! The categories are,
- What is a Mary Sue anyway? And why people create them?
- Before creating him/her, aka General attitude
- When creating him/her
- When writing about him/her
- Notes about fan characters
- Notes about original characters
- Links to other Anti Mary Sue tutorials
Most the tricks I've mentioned in this guide are good to remember all the time. However, the tricks I've marked with a star symbol (*) are optional, kind of extra tricks. I use quite harsh examples in the guide to make stuff clear, but remember that the flaws that are smaller than the ones that I mentioned can be bad, too!
On the other hand: Generally, NONE of mentioned flaws are ABSOLUTELY bad, so you don't necessarily have to throw your character into recycling bin or
Rants: Mary-sues and how to make a decent OCRants: Mary-sues and how to make a decent OC4 years ago in General Fiction More Like This
Well, I figured that since Spongebob- Proof Of Spandy was so popular that I would do something that's different but also the same. I've written a little mini rant/opinions on an issue that isn't nearly as annoying as it used to be but it's still suck around for a quite a while everywhere I've been (Ex. DevArt, Fanfiction Net, LiveJournal). So, hope you can all enjoy and leave whatever comments you feel necessary. I would love to hear your opinions.
First I shall address Mary-Sues. Here's the five bad points of a Mary-Sue:
The name is only a slight problem. As in, it's not really one to be too concerned about but it is something that could give a good character a bad image. A name such as 'Melony Butterfly Lily DeeDee Silver Jay Hannah Rose, Melony Rose for short' is not going to give anyone a pretty image of your character and people will get tired just by trying to sa
So You've Created a Mary SueSo Youve Created a Mary-SueSo You've Created a Mary Sue7 years ago in Academic Essays More Like This
One day while browsing on deviant Art or even Fanfiction.net you get a really great idea to create your own Original Character (OC). So cool, right? You make him/her for your favorite fandom so you can draw or write them it, its like youre in the series. You can make your favorite sexy anime guy or beautiful girl fall head over heels in love. You quickly write everything you would like if you were in that fandom and upload away. Thats when you get your first comment or review. As soon as you open it the room catches fire and you are incinerated within the depths of a Flame. A flame is a type of review or comment that is left usually to bash one writing or drawing and hold little to no constructive criticism to help with improvements. Thats when you realized you have been infected by the dread disease of creating a Mary-Sue. Whats the first thing you should do, throw it out right? wrong!
Just like learning to
A Comprehensive Guide to OCsSo you say you want to write an OC, but don't know where to begin? Well, here are a few tips to help you get started, and maybe help you avoid the terrible Mary Sue Trap that so many writers fall into.A Comprehensive Guide to OCs6 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
1. Create a profile for your OC, with their name, age, gender, height, weight, and other such defining characteristics, to help you flesh out how they will look. Once you do this, go back and take out any Mary Sue/Gary Stu adjectives, such as "Sapphire Blue Hair with Icy Pink Streaks" or "Emerald Green Eyes with Amber Sparkles". Everyone wants their character to be special, or easily recognizable, but this tends to backfire horribly when introduced into your story. Unless the universe you are working with has canon characters with strange hair/eye colors, stay away from the unique color approach. The same also applies to skin color, unless your character has some sort of disease, like albinism, that affects a person
OC Mary-Sue Test 2.1OC Mary-Sue/Gary-Stu TestOC Mary-Sue Test 2.15 years ago in Writing More Like This
This test is designed for Original Characters. Questions for Role Play Characters and Fan Characters will be added soon.
Now, this tests for both the traditional Mary Sue/Gary Stu, and for 'gloomdog' style characters, which I suppose is a sub-category of the Mary Sue, but is often over-looked in this kind of test.
Further down this test, there is a list of traits and characteristics, each one stating how many points that particular trait is worth. Simply read through the list, and give your character the appropriate number of points for each of the listed traits/characteristics displayed by your character.
When you reach the end of the list, add up all of your character's points and refer to the results at the very bottom of the test to see (approximately) where your character is on the Sue Scale.
Now, while you're taking this test please also take into account
The Naming of CharactersFirst of all, we don't need this surface-value, wishy-washy crap. I'll show you what I mean, so here's a form I used to give out when accepting OCs for stories a long time ago (ah, back in the days. I truly forgot how fun writing without bounds used to be--you know, writing for your own satisfaction with things like outrageous Sues, blatant cliches, and genres that I have worn out for a year or two. I still do it sometimes, but I can't bring myself to get too heavily into the story because I know it would be really bad to anyone else. I DO miss writing about fantasy journeys, though, but I really wore that out when I was younger, so right now I'm getting into fantasy-without-the-magic. Technically, historical fiction for my own world).The Naming of Characters5 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
Anyway, carry on.
Basic Facts About Mary-SueYou are in love with Riku. You are warm for his form. Unfortunately, you cannot have him. He doesn't exist, after all. So you do the next best thing. You create a fan fic centering around your own original character (OC) and Riku.Basic Facts About Mary-Sue9 years ago in Editorial More Like This
Riku falls in love with this character immediately. His dark personality turns on your OC like a light bulb. The two share passionate moments as he gushes his feelings for her on Twilight Hill (three hours after meeting her, of course), telling her how much he loves her layered purple hair, silver eyes, milky white skin, and thin, curvy body. He tells her how the name Ruby Mina Rose-Topaz fits her so well. The normally chaste Riku agrees to a one-nighter without hesitation.
As they lie in the spacious bed in her mansion, she begins to sob. Her eyes turn emerald as tears pour down her cheek. Immediately, Riku strokes her moonlit silver hair and coaxes her into telling him what is wrong. Tearfully, she sobs about how her parents were murdered. She was brought u
Character Cliches to AvoidCharacter Cliches to Avoid (Like the Plague)Character Cliches to Avoid5 years ago in Writing More Like This
This tutorial-suggestion love child will be split into two parts :: 1 for cliches that should NEVER, EVER, EVER, EVUR be done by anyone, and the second part being ones that shouldn't be done by beginning writers.
Section One: The Black Plague
These are character cliches that are so overdone that they should NEVER be done anymore. EVER.
Not a lot to say on this one. There's nothing worse than reading a piece of writing though with a main character or side character that never got the character development that they deserved.
This is my name for characters that never change through the series/work. Your character should always grow with each obstacle they're faced with.
Characters with Atrociously-Spelled Names
Let's just say that if I have to get out the pronounciation guide to get through the first half of your character's name, it shouldn't be done.
How to Be a Likeable Female Character1. Have a sense of humor.How to Be a Likeable Female Character4 years ago in Philosophical More Like This
2. Learn to do some things for yourself; don't just sit around and expect someone else to handle all the work.
3. Have a listening ear and a sympathetic heart.
4. Dream about true love, but at the same time know how to care for yourself.
5. If you do find love, love him for who he is, not for what you want him to be.
6. Never be controlling or manipulative.
7. Never let anyone push you around.
8. Cry when necessary, but don't get carried away.
9. Always stand by those whom you truly care about.
10. Don't be so serious that you forget to have fun, but don't have so much fun that you forget to be serious.
Profile TemplateProfile for:Profile Template6 years ago in Profiles More Like This
Chinese Zodiac Sign:
>possesions, make-up, jewelry, etc.
>least favorite food
>most prized possesion (important or emotional value)
>vernacular (way of speaking)
>social and other pressure, problems
>relationships (with who and what kind)
>beliefs, superstition, moral value
Murdering Mary SueMurdering Mary SueMurdering Mary Sue8 years ago in Academic Essays More Like This
Every aspiring writer has met her at least once, whether in his own works or in those of others. The alluring temptation of a perfect character taunts the author from one side while his muse urges him to keep writing from the other. Who wouldn't love her? She's the most beautiful, talented, fantastic woman in the universe, with not a flaw in sight. Every woman wants to be her; every man wants to marry her, so why would anyone want to kill her? Who would want to murder Mary Sue?
I would. I and many greater authors have been working hard to keep this succubus in her proper place: the trash can. Mary Sue is one of the worst enemies of good fiction, second only to poor spelling and grammar. And the seductress tempts even the most cautious writer. Her many disguises can make her difficult to spot, allowing her to weave her way into every plot twist and turn, slowly destroying the author's work. By the time shes found, she may have done so much damage that the
MARY SUE COOKBOOK MARY SUE COOKBOOKMARY SUE COOKBOOK8 years ago in Academic Essays More Like This
Small word of introduction: This little essay is based on my own experiences with OCs, Mary Sues and widely known fictional characters. The opinions expressed here are mine alone and I understand not everyone might agree with them. But that doesnt mean Im going to change my opinion just because someone thinks different. Im not anyones trained circus monkey.
If you are reading this, you probably know what a Mary Sue is. Just check Wikipedia or Encyclopedia Dramatica for various definitions. I personally think the most simple and accurate definition can be A Mary Sue is an overrated fictional character, that only her/his creator loves. Sues can be found in three basic places: fanfiction, original fiction and roleplays. Mary Sues are mostly created by 12-15 year old girls with a strong sense of insecurity. And here begins my story
How to Make an Awesome OCHow to Make Your OC Awesome without Making Him/her Into a Mary-sue/Gary-stuHow to Make an Awesome OC6 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
By Prof. Naga BA, MH
There are tons of guides about avoiding the creation of a Mary-sue/Gary-stu throughout the internet, but nobody ever say anything about making it awesome. Admit it, people. I know you have this problem. Even I have. But then I found a way-a way that will make the title into reality if you do it nicely and diligently. One single drop of ignorance and you're toast. There are steps to reach enlightenment. Scroll down and you'll know it.
ATTENTION: This guide is not for minor OCs that only appears for a very brief moment. If you're making a story and you want minor OCs for villains -- you can actually make them into a Sue/Stu, because Sues and Stus are meant to be annihilated.
Step 1: Themselves
1.1 The Protoform
Where does your OC come from? Most fanfic writers (especially girls) make their OCs based on themselves. They can also inspire by someon
How To Write A StoryWriting a book is an adventure. To begin with, it is a toy and an amusement. Then it becomes a mistress, then it becomes a master, then it becomes a tyrant. The last phase is that just as you are about to be reconciled to your servitude, you kill the monster, and fling him to the public.How To Write A Story7 years ago in Writing More Like This
-Sir Winston Churchill
Now that we've gotten that out of the way....
Hello, and welcome to Cooking With The Authors! This is the show where we bring an aspiring author to our stage, set them in an electric chair, and give them the basics to writing a story. If they do it right, their novel or what have you is published. If they turn out trash not unlike the bet sellers of today, well, our contestants get to have a nice little meeting with Old Sparky! Today, our contestant is... you, the reader!
No, not really. I wish there was such a game-show, but who in their right mind would be a contestant on that show? Although, I know I'm being fairly hypocritical here. If th
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
How Not To Get A Mary SueX-x-X-x-X-x-X How to Create A Well balanced Female Lead X-x-X-x-X-x-XHow Not To Get A Mary Sue4 years ago in Profiles More Like This
For most people, the problems that people will have with a character is the lack of balance they might have.
Mary-Sues are the most popular characters that exemplify this.
Mary Sues are characters that have more good traits than flaws and therefore look perfect for the audience. That can include all sorta of aspects in the character 'life'.
1) You have over-powered Mary-sues who can defeat any and every opponent and therefore are respected and awed by everyone.
2) Realtionship-Sues who are so much of the woman that every man who meets her is obviously struck with love the minute they see her, even when the character has no real qualities that WOULD normally attract men. And these are also the ones who are able to take their pick of the guy and somehow always end up getting with the most sought-after man in the series.
3) You have the feminist-sues/tom-boy sues who are the perfect women in their being less "girly" on
mary-sue testthis test was made for people who write fanfictions featuring their OC`s [original characters] wishing to avoid creating mary-sues. You can test as many characters as you want :] remember: no offensemary-sue test8 years ago in General Non-Fiction More Like This
UPDATE `11 30 07
If your character belongs to a race that has wings, unusual eye colour, etc. And most other characters in the story have those traits, don`t add extra points.
P.S - This test is intended for human female characters. If your character is male, go look for a gary-stu test.
1. Does your character have a long, rare or unusual name? [if she lives in japan, japanese name is not unusual] +1
2. Does your character have more than one first/second name for no reason? +1
3. [count all that apply]
She`s not a human? +1
Half a human? +1
[half]An Angel? +1
[half]A Vampire? +1
[half]A Werewolf? +1
4. She belongs to a royal family? +1
5. Does she have amnesia? +1
It heals as the story goes on? +1
___ out of 10
Mary Sue Guide - Part 1The BasicsMary Sue Guide - Part 14 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
Before you start reading this, two things to keep in mind:
Do not simply assume your OC is or isn't a Mary Sue before you start reading. Keep an open mind.
This guide is NOT a rulebook. No matter how Sue I think something is, that doesn't mean you absolutely should not do it under any circumstance. Also, some things are more minor than others. Just because your character has some Sue traits doesn't make her a Sue. A little flare doesn't hurt.
This is by no means meant to be offensive or aimed at any specific author or character. It is also not 100% accurate. There are always circumstances outside a Mary Sue Guide. The purpose of this is not to be a statement of fact but merely something to help.
Definition of a Mary Sue: A clichéd being that is often too perfect and unrealistic. Because of this, they may cause other characters to go out of character.
Possible Traits of a Mary Sue and How to Fix Them:
How To 'Flesh Out' an OCHow To 'Flesh Out' an OC4 years ago in Reviews & Guides More Like This
The aggregate of features and traits that form the
individual nature of some person or thing.
In this tutorial I will guide you through a way to 'flesh out' an Original Character (Also known as an OC). Before we begin, let's go through the basics.
A character is quite simply one who possesses qualities that define them from someone else. Every character is original and unique. A character can not only be human, but an animal, an alien, or anything that the imagination can come up with.
However, characters are often difficult to create, because to put it bluntly, you are in a sense creating a new being. This being needs the same kinds of traits and characteristics you possess, but can't be your own. They have to be original. In this case, many young writers and artists forget how hard it is to make a character and forget the complex details that enhance a character.
Fleshing out is a term used commonly in developing characters. It means to add additional det
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-
DO's and DON'Ts of OCsDOs and DONTs of Creating OCs.DO's and DON'Ts of OCs7 years ago in General Non-Fiction More Like This
I'm not a brilliant or fantasmically talented writer, but I know a decent OC when I see one. Or at least a non-crappy one.
I think we know how this works. Here we go
1. DO Try to vary your OCs personalities. In the real world, if everyone had the same awesome, flawless character, life would be mind-numbingly BORING. Also, not everyone is nice/horrible/depressed/energetic all the time. (Unless, of course, you want to use that as a flaw.)
2. DONT get too hung up on making profiles for your characters. Profiles are for procrastinators who want to make a fantastic character without getting started on the actual story. I was guilty of it too, before I realised how boring filling out the same form over and over again was.
Try describing them in the story, THEN make notes to help you remember stupid boring details like their star-sign and eye colour so you dont accidentally change them halfway through the st
How Not to write a Mary SueHow Not to write a Mary Sue4 years ago in Writing More Like This
How Not To Write A Mary Sue
So, what is a Mary Sue? It is used as a form of criticism in literature and refers to an idealised and somewhat "perfect" character that appears to have no flaws or if they do they are so limited that all the "perfect" characteristics overwhelm them making the character "flat." Mary sue often refers to a young female protagonist and male "Mary Sues" are often called "Larry Stu".
From my experience most Mary Sues are written in non-published works usually by young writers especially in fan-fiction. However there are a few Mary Sue writers who are actually published (sadly). It shows a deep lacking to create perfect characters unless it's done for satirical purposes.
So why should you avoid writing Mary Sues? Simple, perfect is boring!
We don't like perfect, we don't want perfect! Ask anyone in a relationship to list the positives traits, charms and idiosyncrasies of their partner and I guarantee at least one will be something that is weird, annoying, bizarre
Mary-Sues: Part 2Mary-Sues Part 2: How Not to Write Like Your Character is a SueMary-Sues: Part 25 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
Is she Mary Sue? Clarifying Mary SueIs she Mary Sue?4 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