Middle-Earth Fanfiction Awards

Tolkien in Love

Author: Eldalie
Nominator: Robinka
2010 Award Category: Genres: Non-Fiction

Story Type: Non-Fiction : Length: N/A
Rating: General -- Reason for Rating: N/A
Summary: All an author needs to know about writing het and slash romance fanciftion in the Tolkien universe.

Reviewed by: The Lauderdale -- Score: 8

I was very pleased to see this essay running in the MEFAs. There is often an unpleasantly shrill timbre to online discussions of romance writing in Middle-earth fanfiction, and amid the countless screeds against Mary Sues (often over-generalized to cover all original female characters), same-sex pairings, and non-canonical relationships in general, this is a friendly, generous and reassuring guide to the subject. It isn't everything a newish author might need to know, not by a long shot, but on rereading it I am still impressed with the variety of topics covered, some of which are fairly unusual in the area of Middle-earth romance writing guides. And of course that handy table of contents provided up front allowed me to skip straight to my areas of interest. First stop - chapter 16, of course! Eldalie writes like someone who has seen the meaner side of fandom and has little patience with canaticism: [Don't accept insults from those who think they own the truth: they don't.] While I have own reservations and disagreements with some of her inferences, as far as Im concerned this line makes everything golden.

Reviewed by: Larner -- Score: 6

I have spent a couple of enjoyable hours reading this highly enteraining and informative essay on including romance in Tolkien fanficion, and I must recommend it to others. It includes a survey of almost every possible manner in which romantic situations have been written along with very practical advice on how to make a romance not only work, but be believable as well. It's perhaps a bit longer than most nonfiction essays tend to be (it's been split into five pages on the OpenScrolls site), but it's definitely well worth the time it takes to read and consider it. Eldalie is definitely to be commended. Her own writing is clear, intelligent, well researched, and witty. I hope that others enjoy it as much as I did, and that they take to heart a good deal of her advice and critiquing.

Reviewed by: Dreamflower -- Score: 5

I confess, I was slightly misled by the title. I thought I was going to read an essay about how Tolkien's own love for his wife Edith had impacted his work on Middle-earth. Ah well! It was a most interesting essay anyway. I like the author's insistence that even when a writer is planning to take an AU route with their characters, that they should familiarize themselves wth canon. ["On the other hand, canon exists: canon is the reason we're here, and the fact that we like it is the trigger that has pushed us to fanfiction in the first place. You may stretch it, gap-fill it, alter it, even break it; you can go AU (Another Universe, where things change substantially from the original story), and you can mock it, parody it, or use a different version from Tolkien's own writings. What you can't do, is ignoring it."] I also like the defense of fic involving OCs. Some of the best Middle-earth romance I've ever read features either OCs or minor canon characters who've been fleshed out like OCs. A fun and interesting essay, even if I don't agree with *all* the author says it is thought-provoking and well-reasoned.

Reviewed by: Robinka -- Score: 4

When I read this essay some time ago my first feeling was to shout "thank you, thank you, thank you!!!" and to hug the author because many aspects of writing (fan)fiction fit my point of view and they mirror my own opinions. I found myself often nodding and smiling, and then again nodding while reading it. It is a very well written and constructed piece, and I love its witty style above many other things. I can wholeheartedly recommend it to writers, those who are experienced ones and those new alike. Brava!

Reviewed by: Raksha the Demon -- Score: 4

An excellent and comprehensive essay on handling all aspects of love in the writing of Tolkien fanfiction. I would recommend it to even practiced writers of Tolkien fanfic; just as a refresher course. Eldalie uses humor, common sense and her own research skills to good effect. It's the type of essay that, if you look at the entire piece, looks like it would take an Age to write, but reads briskly and easily. Well done!

Reviewed by: Ellynn -- Score: 3

This is an excellent essay about writing romances in Tolkien fanfiction. I would recommend it to both new and experienced writers, for so many different themes/genres/situations are described in the essay and everyone will find something new and useful to learn. So well done!