Twilight stars — reluctantly — in today’s featured story.
Twilight is Annoyed
[Dark] [Tragedy] • 2,429 words
Twilight has been alone for a long time. She’s not sure how long anymore, but the color of the sun is giving her some ideas.
Twilight stopped dreaming a long time ago, but she is now plagued by visions. Visions of the past. Visions of the worst moments of her life.
Twilight is feeling really annoyed right now.
FROM THE CURATORS: As longtime ponyfic readers, we are always looking for something a little different — so when Present Perfect noted in his nomination that “I can’t say I’ve read a dark fic quite like this before,” the strong execution of this story’s style brought us around to quick agreement on its feature. “I’ll call it another example of Pony horror done right,” AugieDog opined, while Soge praised its freshness: “It is a clever idea, a more-or-less by-the-books take on ImmorTwilight that still manages to bring something new to the table.”
That novelty was in this story’s memorable depiction of its protagonist. “I really love how the author chose to represent Twilight, and establish her inner conflict,” Soge said, and Horizon agreed: “The way this pulls off its slow reveal while keeping Twilight broken and unmoored is a big thing right.” The prose was a major contributor to that. “What works best is the sentence structure,” Present Perfect said. “So many begin with ‘Twilight’, which just drives home how alone she is. Her actions are choppy, there’s little in the way of transition from one to the next, which along with her constant repeating of actions sells her fractured and damaged mind.”
Oddly, we found ourselves approaching the story’s laconic, direct style rather differently. “A little more subtlety would have gone a long way here,” Soge said. “However, it is a striking, memorable fic, able to convey much through style and atmosphere.” AugieDog admired its restraint, though: “The way everything’s so tamped-down here — the emotions, the language, the storyline, the grammar — it just all works really well.” And Chris disagreed with them both: “I say, there’s nothing wrong with hitting the reader over the head with a two-by-four as long as you let them hold the wackin’ stick themselves,” he said. “Subtle? No. But even as it abandons nuance, it still gives the reader freedom.”
Read on for our author interview, in which Protopony350 discusses breadcrumbs, robot obsessions, and double-necked guitars.
Give us the standard biography.
I was born in hospital, or so the legends say, over 20 years ago, but less than 30 years ago. My first word was “Breadcrumbs”, or so I’d like to believe, and if you fast forward a few years I started writing horse stories for fun, but I don’t think anyone’s here to read about that.
How did you come up with your handle/penname?
I grew up LOVING the Mega Man games. Like I was absolutely OBSESSED. As the years went on, I started getting into other fandoms, and I eventually came across an amazing Mega Man based rock band called “The Protomen”. A few years later, I discovered pony, and naturally decided to merge two of my favorite things to create a username.
Who’s your favorite pony?
Trixie. It will always be Trixie. Nothing you can say will change my answer from Trixie.
What’s your favorite episode?
Gotta be “Pinkie Pride”. Pinkie has my favorite singing voice, and combining her with Weird Al was a masterful decision.
What do you get from the show?
I’m not lying when I say this show brightened my life. It gave me a better attitude, I picked up better habits, and I even started taking better care of myself after being inspired by these wonderful characters.
What do you want from life?
A double-necked guitar.
Why do you write?
I genuinely find it fun, and EXTREMELY cathartic. If I had a bad day at work, I can have one of my characters incinerate a bad guy. If my heart has been broken, I can give one of my characters a happy ending.
What advice do you have for the authors out there?
Write what YOU want to write, not what you think others want to read. If you get 100 downvotes and a single upvote, you still brought joy to a single person, and that makes the whole thing worth it.
In your own words, trollfics are your specialty. What motivates you to write outside your comfort zone, and how difficult is it to make the transition?
I had just watched my favorite film, “It’s Such a Beautiful Day” by Don Hertzfeldt, and it had put me in a rather melancholy mood. I was inspired to try something new, and drew a lot of inspiration from that film when it comes to style I chose to tell the story.
On top of all of that, I had just come off of the 5th installment of my “Swooty Bell” trollfic series, and after over 30,000 words of that, I needed to try something new.
How did you decide which details to include in the narrative, and which to leave to the reader’s imagination?
I wanted to invoke a feeling of looming terror and unease in the reader, and in most cases, less is more when trying to trigger those feelings.
I wanted the reader to only see what Twilight was seeing. Her life was basically flashing before her eyes, and in those moments you don’t remember things like walking to a friend’s house, or eating lunch. You remember the big moments. The defining moments. Unfortunately, Twilight’s defining moment came in the form of the death of everyone she cared for.
Some things, like the conflict with Grogar that started the whole mess, would have just been a retread of every other villain story from the show, and I feel like that was easy to fill in.
What was different between this situation, where Twilight took the other Princesses’ powers and caused the end of the world, and the fight with Tirek?
During the battle with Tirek, Twilight was ASKED to take the power from the other Alicorns, and was hesitant. In this story, she approached THEM for the power, and let herself become arrogant. She didn’t respect the power she took, and because of that she was unable to keep it in check.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
I want to thank a user by the name of NameGoesHere. The story was a bit of a mess before they volunteered to edit for me.