That was my tenth anniversary in starting to write fanfiction. I would have said something about this earlier, but with moving and no internet, this post was delayed for quite some time.
I had designated June 4th, 2004 to be the first step into a realm of endless possibilities, although I never knew it at the time. While I had drawn fanart for a few weeks before--my first pieces were published around May 22, 2004--my first words in fanfiction was the following passage:
It has been a very interesting week. I know I’ve been to the Floating Island before, but never have I worked under Knuckles as an assistant. It was fun, even he was a bit of a grouch. Sure wish Sonic, was there. We were both going to the Island together, but Amy visited the village from the city, and Sonic barricaded himself in his hut. Said something about being sick. When I visited him the next day, he really was sick. Amy started panicking and screaming him about having the mumps or typhoid or something like that, even if it was just a head cold. That kept him from going to the Island. I said I’d stay, but they said to go there and have fun and he’ll be there probably tomorrow. I’ve learned my first lesson: Never believe those so-called volunteer nurses. Anyway, I took my plane, Tornado, and flew off to the Island. You know how difficult it is to land a biplane on a flying island? I miss-aimed my landing and nearly hit the flag lady. Stupid lady, you’d think they wouldn’t stand where a plane could hit you. Then, I entered Echid—Echidn—what stupid hick decided to call it that? I thought Station Square was big. I got lost. It’s a good thing I ran into a cop, and I asked where Knuckles lives.
I know, I know, it's horrible and stinks than a flock of dead fish, but that's not the point. This first paragraph belongs to a short, silly fic called Help Wanted, a Sonic the Hedgehog fic that all started with a bizarre dream I had one night. Around the same time, I had been reading a lot of fanfiction by :iconnetraptor: and I got influenced by her Sonic Adventure 2 adapt, Shadows of Chaos, to write another very short fic called The Fall...and Back Again, which was finished before Help Wanted This would spawn a psuedo-sequel to be published later in August. Not knowing at the time what I was getting into, I just kept writing. There were several failed products that had emerged, but were thankfully squashed in 2004. Such of these were a failed SA1 adapt, a Star Trek/Sonic crossover and a Sonic Heroes adapt. Discouraged, I canned them all, but in February 2005, I resuscitated the SA1 project that would turn into The Great Adventure: The Legend of Chaos, which would be completed later that year in October. At that time, it was the largest fanfic I had written, with over 100,000 words over 32 chapters. As a note, all of these fanfics were published on FanFiction.netfanfiction.net and Netraptor.org Fanfiction.
Due to that fic's relative success, I was encouraged to continue with an SA2 adaptation, The Great Adventure 2: Revenge of the Shadow, which was published in April 2006. After that, I was beginning to wonder where I was going to go with all these works. They were rather generic and hollow by themselves, but together they inferred a bigger story, something only I knew. Then I realized that I had to continue writing, so I began outlining an overarching story composed of 18 possible stories, as well as an extensive worldbuilding project to support them all. Before I could act too far on it, I entered college and fanfiction writing took something of a break as I devoted myself to studies. At the same time, Sonic the Hedgehog for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 was released and I started playing that. I was intrigued enough with the story to write that into the arch as well, and had even begun writing it, but only casually. April 2008 changed everything when I was diagnosed with stress-anxiety disorder coupled with psychogenic nonepilepsy, and March-April 2008 were the darkest months of my life. Depressed and struggling, I wondered if I should quit college and go back home. Suddenly, in July 2008, I decided to try fanfiction again, and something awoke inside me, a passion for writing that I never felt before. Those who might have read the fic at the time may have noticed a complete style change in writing in Chapter 15. I kept going and going until finally, The Great Adventure 3: The Flames of Solaris was published in July 2010, boasting 27 chapters and 479 pages.
During that time, I soon discovered that ideas that weren't going to work for fanfiction at all were jotted down in a notebook, and I began to entertain the idea of original works. I couldn't while I was in school because I was in my senior year at the time, so I had to refocus, but my writing surged forward. Then, in April 2011, my writing would turn again a new direction. One night, April 11, 2011, I wrote a one-shot of something completely unrelated to anything I've ever done before, and for a week, I had no idea what to do with it. At the same time, I was introduced to X-Men Evolution, a TV series that reimagined most of the X-Men as highschoolers coexisting in a typical high school setting. Also being heavily influenced by Fullmetal Alchemist, I soon had an idea on how that one-shot could become...and Jason Downs was born. Later that same year, X-Men Forged: New Recruit was published in December 2011.
For the last two and a half years, my writing skyrocketed, setting new personal bests and earning a lot of feedback. Despite a lot of setbacks in life, status and whatnot, I still continue to write. While I still have a few stalled projects--such as Shadows of Doom: Night of the Hunter and Operation: Firestorm--other works continue to bloom, such as a romance in the Dragon Age universe, more Marvel-related works, and even a secret project that I hope to reveal later before 2015. At the same time, original works have taken off. I learned that I'm like a shark; I have to keep writing or it all dies. Thankfully, my mind is always pouring with ideas,a side-effect of my condition, I suppose.
It's been quite a roller-coaster ride the last ten years, but I discovered a lot about myself, the art of writing and many other things in those years. I hope to learn more and more in the next ten--as well as finish those fics.
Thank you all for all the support!