Today’s story will éclair-ify what it means to truly have friends.
[Slice of Life] • 13,097 words
My name is Twilight Sprinkle, and my passion is donuts—from the delicate morsels I serve at elegant cocktail parties to the hearty pastries enjoyed by hard-working ponies who get up early. I don’t have friends, I don’t have books, and I sure as the sun don’t have any wings. I don’t care whether you’re here for revenge, for romance, or for a favor. My name is Twilight Sprinkle and I’m not who you think I am, so either buy a donut or get the hay out of my store!
FROM THE CURATORS: Collectively, we had the broadest range of reactions (and votes!) to The Donutier that we’ve ever had to a successfully featured fic — which included disagreeing on such basics as the story’s primary genre. “Despite lacking a Comedy tag, this is a really funny story with an immense heart,” Present Perfect said in his nomination. “I don’t see this as a Comedy,” Soge countered. “It’s a solid, entertaining fic, a lighthearted slice-of-life-cum-adventure wrapped in a light and fluffy mistaken identity story.”
Our most vigorous debate centered around the characters (especially the justifiability of Twilight Sprinkle’s actions), but the ultimate consensus was that they were a showcase for strong writing. “In its modest length this manages to introduce us to the life of two very distinct ponies, who go through a full character arc — and, in Twilight Sprinkle’s case, the Hero’s Journey — while simultaneously exploring really well the themes of friendship, destiny, and finding one’s place in the world,” Soge said. Present Perfect appreciated both of the protagonists: “While snarky, Twilight Sprinkle never becomes tiresome, unless you just really hate donut puns,” he said. “And ‘Ravenwing Bloodmane’ is a perfect foil for her. The real story is about them becoming friends, and it flows very naturally.” Horizon praised their interplay: “PP noted that there’s a Trixie and Starlight dynamic here … it’s to this story’s credit that it can capture that dynamic without recapitulating the canon relationship, and then give a subtle nod to it with Starlight’s cameo.”
As our debate went on, Death Of The Author ultimately got invoked: “I enjoyed the heck outta this … though I hafta admit, I’m unsure if the author meant to portray Twilight Sprinkle as an unreliable narrator or if it’s something my brain decided for reasons of its own,” AugieDog said. Regardless of the debate, it provoked near-unanimous enjoyment, and Horizon took a stab at summing up why we all read it so differently. “The Donutier isn’t afraid to advance its storytelling through implication,” he said, “and while that leads to a lower-key storytelling style with a surprising economy of words — it packs eight chapters and an epilogue into its 13K — there’s still enough happening on-screen to keep it consistently compelling.”
Read on for our author interview, in which Hap discusses homemade mayonnaise, stripper boxing, and idyllic adventure apocalypses.