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 Post subject: "Love Protects" and other upcoming stories
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2016 10:30 am 
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In light of the initial reception of my newest fanfic "Protection," I thought I should explain a little more about what I'm up to this time. One thing readers have noticed, and questioned, is that I'm presenting the Balto characters as anthropomorphic versions of themselves, a la Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (but without a lot of corny dialogue and wacky action scenes) in a world where instead of humans they have various "furries" as they are often called (I prefer the term "anthros"). Think of it as a little like the Star Fox games or the show Thundercats, but more down-to-earth (e.g. no space travel or magic swords). While I've done this before with the serial fanfic Balto's Treasure Island, this one takes a different turn in a couple of ways. So to start off, I'll tackle some questions that have consistently arisen or are offshoots thereof.

Why anthros? A couple of reasons, but the main one is that normal dogs would not be able to do many of the things I have in mind for the stories. There's a very human element to the plots I have in mind, both action-wise (e.g. some of the plots wouldn't work if the dogs couldn't manipulate objects the way people can) and on a more personal level (e.g. "Protection" involves some concerns on Jenna's part as to how she and Balto will get by in difficult circumstances). While I could modify some fo that to fit regular dogs - at least in theory - I don't want to risk the interpretation seeming forced (like, say, An All Dogs Christmas Carol) or being too hard for readers to relate to.

Why the eighties? To answer that I'll have to give a little background. This actually started as a much bigger project which began with teenage versions of Kodi and Dusty as total strangers suddenly both working as camp counselors (naturally, I thought of this while working at a summer camp). I'll get a little more into that later, but to make it easier to accurately depict teenage life I decided to make them my age or close to it. Tracing back along the timeline, that meant that "Protection," set before Kodi was born, would be somewhere in the eighties.

Now, having answered those questions (and probably raised a few more), I'll get down to the method behind the madness. As I mentioned, my initial idea was a story about Kodi and Dusty at a summer camp, which I'm currently calling Camp Contusions (if anyone has a better title, please suggest it; I'm not sure I want this to sound like a Bugs Bunny cartoon). Some of you have heard about this before, but basically the story (or possible series) is that they both got jobs at the same camp; he because he loved going there as a kid, she because her parents made her get a job for the summer so she would do something worthwhile with her time. Simply put, a lot of the story involves them trying to get along despite their radically different personalities while dealing with the various crises that come of being camp counselors.

From that story developed two others: Straight Laces, Tangled Lives, which deals with them going back to school and facing peer pressure from their respective crowds, which normally wouldn't interact much. To be clear, no this is not a remake of High School Musical, no it is not based in any way on Bleach, and no it's not a nerds versus jocks thing (in fact Kodi's athlete status as a track and field runner is one of the few things Dusty's friends do like about him). I won't give out too many spoilers, but this story will deal with a lot of teenage issues such as drinking, authority, and... yeah, you get the idea. As the title implies, they try to do the right thing but often find their lives complicated because of it. The other offshoot is a prequel: Crossing the Tracks. This one, set in the seventies, may actually be a little more like Bleach (I don't know; never saw it), with Balto as a very un-popular kid due to being effectively bi-racial and, as everyone perceives it, poor (his better clothes are mostly hand-me-downs from his deceased father). Jenna, meanwhile, is popular much like in the original movie, and trying not to let it have a negative influence on her. Like the other one, this story deals a lot with peer pressure, drugs, and so on, sometimes underscored and sometimes overshadowed by the racism of the seventies. I'm hoping to collaborate with Soonergirl on all of the above so I can work more efficiently.

I should probably mention at this point that I'll try to make these stories something a kid could safely read, but in case the material is no give-away, I'm going with a PG rating to be safe.

Now the question arises of where "Protection" comes in. "Protection" is essentially chapter one in a companion project, called "What's Love Anyway?" My aim there is to present a series of short, semi-related stories which give some perspective not only on the real workings of love (e.g. relying on more than warm fuzzies to keep a relationship going), but also the love shown to different kinds of people: parents, kids, husbands, wives, and even mortal enemies; yes, that will actually come up. Ultimately I want to step back from the standard romance/family formuli and look at love in a broader and clearer sense. In the case of "Protection," this is expressed not only by Jenna and Balto's trust in one another to be trustworthy and dependable in uncertain times, but also by another little theme which gives an idea of just what kind of parents they'll be. (this is set, in case it wasn't obvious, somewhere between Crossing the Tracks and Camp Contusions.

So the next question you might be thinking of is, "What's next?" Well, I intend to continue with "What's Love Anyway?" by posting a new story (or two, depending) each year around Valentine's Day. I got the idea from someone else's project involving Christmas stories with the cast of Star Fox. These will take place in the same world and more or less the same timeline as the longer fanfics mentioned, and in a few cases will be deleted scenes modified to work by themselves. I don't have any particular order in mind for posting them, so to make things easier I'll put a listing here of some of my ideas chronologically (including the ones which are confirmed but not yet published). Full-length ones will be in italics; portions for "What's Love Anyway" will be regular.

Crossing the Tracks
Masquerade (originally set during C the T; now kind of its own thing but still a high school Balto/Jenna bit)
Love Protects http://www.animationsource.org/balto/en/view_fanfic/Love_Protects/259392.html
Camp Contusions
Selflessness
Straight Laces, Tangled Lives
Love Forgives
Love Waits

So, that's the basic explanation. Questions and comments are always welcome.

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Last edited by Jake Razor on Wed Feb 24, 2016 8:31 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: "Protection" and other upcoming stories
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2016 11:45 am 
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Dragon Tamer wrote:
In light of the initial reception of my newest fanfic "Protection," I thought I should explain a little more about what I'm up to this time. One thing readers have noticed, and questioned, is that I'm presenting the Balto characters as anthropomorphic versions of themselves, a la Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (but without a lot of corny dialogue and wacky action scenes)...While I could modify some fo that to fit regular dogs - at least in theory - I don't want to risk the interpretation seeming forced (like, say, An All Dogs Christmas Carol) or being too hard for readers to relate to.

I'm not quite sure how to take that. But I don't recall my interpretation of my story being (or seeming) "forced".

I was rather disappointed at reading that inference and allusion to my fan fiction.

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 Post subject: Re: "Protection" and other upcoming stories
PostPosted: Sat Feb 20, 2016 9:54 am 
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EDITS: Post altered to clarify the idea of an anthro-verse and add a story to the list.

BaltoSeppala wrote:
I'm not quite sure how to take that. But I don't recall my interpretation of my story being (or seeming) "forced".

I was rather disappointed at reading that inference and allusion to my fan fiction.


My apologies for any perceived slight on your writing; I was referring strictly to how I thought it might unfold if I tried it - and how it unfolded with the All Dogs go to Heaven Christmas special. I don't know if you saw it or not - though I seem to vaguely remember you mentioning it - but knowing you I think you would not like it much. I can understand your confusion, though, and I suppose that the reason I even cited that particular movie was in part because reading your fic and discussing other Christmas Carol retellings (like the Flinstones one) brought it to mind as one of the weaker attempts I've seen at fitting human plots into canine settings. It was kind of like the difference between Frozen and the original story, The Snow Queen; I spent much of the latter wishing the movie I'd seen was more like the story I was looking at in print.

For your own part, you managed an interpretation of "A Christmas Carol" quite elegantly in your story "Reclamation," but as a writer I doubt I'll ever have the particular knack that you do - and neither, I dare say, will the writers of the movie I meant to disparage. My point, in short, is that some of us have it and some of us don't, and I think in this case I myself would end up falling into the latter camp. Also, it's only fair to point out that some of the situations brought up in my upcoming stories are considerably different than anything seen in "A Christmas Carol."

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 Post subject: Re: "Protection" and other upcoming stories
PostPosted: Sat Feb 20, 2016 12:18 pm 
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Then I accept your apology and your explanation. Thank you for clarifying.

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 Post subject: Re: "Protection" and other upcoming stories
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2016 7:54 pm 
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You're welcome.

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 Post subject: Re: "Love Protects" and other upcoming stories
PostPosted: Wed Feb 24, 2016 8:34 pm 
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Edit: I added some more chapter ideas to the list and changed the title of "Protection" to "Love Protects."

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 Post subject: Re: "Love Protects" and other upcoming stories
PostPosted: Thu Apr 07, 2016 7:24 pm 
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In case anyone feels like giving their thoughts here, I'm considering a side story dealing with the matter of recovering (mentally) from assault, both for those involved in it and those close to them. Obviously this would be a PG-type story (nothing graphic, but it would be pretty clear just how shaken up the victim was), but I'm looking for input, since a story dealing with something so many people struggle with in the real world has just as much potential for harm as for help.

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 Post subject: Re: "Love Protects" and other upcoming stories
PostPosted: Thu Jun 02, 2016 12:09 pm 
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Not sure if anyone is really following this now, but I've got the next chapter almost finished. It will center largely on Kodi, tie in to Father's Day, and deal not only with his connection to Balto but also with teenage issues of peer pressure and morality.

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 Post subject: Re: "Love Protects" and other upcoming stories
PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2020 7:22 pm 
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Cool love story


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 Post subject: Re: "Love Protects" and other upcoming stories
PostPosted: Thu Jan 07, 2021 7:48 am 
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thank for sharing


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