16 May 2012

Author: Kayla Griffith aka Openhome

The next author I want to discuss is Kayla Griffith, aka Openhome.  She is an administrator for Ramblings and Thoughts / Twilight Fan Fiction and Art web site [link on the right side of this site]. She gave me my first break into fan fiction. I sent her my first Twilight related poems and asked if they were suitable for the site. The next thing I knew they were posted. Wow! Heady experience! She has encouraged me in other ways as well. My first fan letter was to her after I finished reading Singularity. I had posted regular reviews, but when finished reading that story I needed to send her a separate emailed letter as a fan. We have continued with occasional email exchanges.

Openhome is her fan fiction name. She has completed two books about Alice and Jasper and working on the last book. The first two were completed before the Illustrated Twilight Guide was published so the story does not agree with the new information found in the Guide. The first book, Singularity, is about Alice’s time from waking as a vampire until meeting Jasper, about 30 years. It was written in response to discussions with her daughters about what Alice was doing during those years of waiting. The story is an interesting character study of how one adapts to a new unexpected life and the challenges that life throws at you while waiting for fulfillment of a vision. Alice is searching for what / who she is and for home. She finds out things about her new self and learns about who she is through her trials and joys.  She is helped along the way by some human and vampire friends and some alone time of self reflection.

None of us are immortal vampires, but we can still relate to some of the experiences Alice has. Alice knows who she loves and the family she will eventually be a part of, but has to wait for those things to actually happen. So what does she do? Sit and mope or goes after life? What do we do when waiting for someone? She gets some disturbing news, what does she do? How do we react to bad news? She has human friends that die. She has vampire friends that need her help. She has choices to make. Some are not well thought out and not well executed. She learns. Reading Alice’s story prompted me to look at some of my decisions and how I’ve lived my life. It shed light on topics in ways that I hadn’t thought of. It has given me a different perspective to some topics. I appreciate this fresh look at things for my own self reflection time.

The second book, Coalescence, is about the time Alice and Jasper have together until about 7 years after joining the Cullen family. It is their journey of discovery of each other. It is their journey together as Alice supports Jasper as he learns to live off of animal blood.  The third book, Rogue, is more about Jasper finding peace after the life he led before finding Alice and the Cullens. There are elements of post traumatic stress disorder for Jasper in Coalescence and I think some final resolution to that will be in Rogue.  It is good to see this issue tackled in fiction as so many people today are dealing with it themselves or helping others deal with it in the real world.

In reading the Twilight Saga books, I’ve not understood why after nearly 50 years the lure of human blood was still so strong for Jasper. Reading Kayla’s stories helps explain that aspect of his character. Jasper is one of the minor characters that changes between beginning of Twilight and end of Breaking Dawn. The end of his change is mostly due to Bella and Nessie. Kayla is giving Jasper a fuller story of that change. That is the appeal for me of Kayla’s stories about Alice and Jasper, getting into their heads as to how and why they change. That also applies to her other stories, just not as detailed being shorter.

Kayla has also written other fan fiction stories – based on Twilight and other fan favorite books.  Those stories can be found through her profile page on R&T and FFn, links provided below. She has a blog about life and writing that shows off her sense of humor. There are at least two original novels that she is working at getting published.  The first is a PG13 romance called Casserole Committee where a town’s casserole committee interferes with the love life of two ladies – one divorced and one widowed. Results are funny and touching. I hope it is published soon so more people can enjoy the small town happenings and Kayla’s delightful and clean sense of humor. The second one is still undergoing final edits.

It is good to see a fan fiction author moving on to being paid for their work, even it means less fan fiction stories. Fan fiction can be purely for fun and self fulfillment or for fun and practice. It is exciting to watch as Kayla’s practice writing in someone else’s universe yields published original novels of romance without all the sex so prevalent in books today. I look forward to whatever else she may write.

Below are links to her fan fiction profiles, a blog entry on R&T and the final link is to her web blog.

author profile

author profile

Tells how peanut butter and cat paws got her to write fan fiction.

The Comfort of Chaos

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