I may have told this story already but I will again - once upon time I received this email from an angry fan.
It went on at length about "How dare you allow the Taylors to get a tattoo - and brawh, brawh, brawwrrrrr!!"
At first, I told him to eat a dick or something 'polite'.
However, I realized after a few exchanges he was mad because like me - he had fallen in love with the characters.
He had grown to know them - feel for them and he felt I had given them the wrong set of circumstances.
It would be like a Star Trek fan who thinks I shouldn't have let Spock make out with Uhuru or whatever - "Thats not how they would be!!"
They feel strongly about the series and it's integrity. So I thanked him.
He went on to write the first "Fan Fic" in the Family Feud series that took these down the path he wanted to see them go.
I tend to make characters, put them in an interesting situation and just write where I think it is going to go - but it could certainly have gone another way.
I was so flattered.
Then - I think I had taken a bit of a break from writing. If I am not feeling creative it will not due for me to just try to crank out crap.
Some very nice woman wrote another excellent short story that enhanced nicely some details about what the Taylor women were doing across the street in the story.
It was so well done - I would say that it should probably be some 'lost chapters' in the Family Feud series.
I also put Hard Times in the FF "Universe" with a few other stories.
The most recent chapter of Hard Times hints at a backstory that connects them all - and I plan to expound upon that (and who knows - maybe even write a full story that does).
However, for now I am hard at work writing Hard Times.
I almost never get 'fan mail' from people who enjoy my writing. I don't think anyone has ever taken my suggestions in the past - but I am going to try again.
I really miss reading fan fiction with these characters.
I would love to challenge you to write a short story and submit it. You can actually have it posted under the FF Universe.
You could make up your own characters, or take a few of the side characters and play around with them - what are they doing and when?
You could continue the story of the Taylors or embellish a scene I simply alluded to!
You could do a "Taylor Family Christmas" and have them decorate Wendy and Jamie for "old time sake" -years after they stopped the training, when Jamie and Chris have their own families.
"Oh hon, it's a family tradition, don't be bashful. Go ahead and put the red-nose on me. It's all I'll get to wear besides these reindeer hooves and cuffs!"
Have fun with it - it would really make my day!