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I am an avid Transformers fan, have been since watching the first Transformers movie (2000). Since then I've immersed myself in its many universes; loving some and loathing others. One facet I continually search is the fanfiction which is a wonderful way of expanding the universes and even rarely improving upon them. I myself write fanfiction and love doing so.

But, as with all fanfiction (no matter what show/game/book it is written for), there is a plethora of crap stories neck deep one must wade through to find the true literary gems. Put simply: 90% of fanfiction is god awful crap written by some kid/proto-adult with little to no writing skills and even less creativity.

NOW…I'm not saying everything I have written is great because that would be a bald-faced lie and terribly arrogant on my part. My earlier work has some of these "peeves" and it took a very honest reviewer to tell me so. If not for Storyseeker I probably would never have written anything better. AND I KNOW everyone has to start somewhere as they grow as a writer. My goal is not to discourage anyone from writing fanfiction because like any art form it takes practice and failure to finally achieve brilliant work. BUT perhaps if some of you are clueless or unclear about what turns readers/writers like me off to fanfiction or maybe answer your doubts of "Is my story any good?", this list might illuminate.

(Some of these clues fall under the mountainous pile of "Mary-Sue Litmus tests" you can (and probably have) read on the internet. But in truth these are just my personal observations and quite often peeves of Transformers fanfiction in general.)

So read and enjoy!

1. You misspell something in your "Plot Summary" or point blank admit "Summary is crap"
At some point someone said you can't judge a book by its cover. While that is a clever metaphor about judging people it is not necessarily true when it pertains to fanfiction. The first thing a reader like me looks at is the title of a story. If it's interesting a reader will read the plot summary to see if it's worth investing a few moments of their valuable time. The moment I see a misspelled word or a sentence that makes no sense in the summary a red flag goes up and immediately sends me away from your fanfiction. Why? Because if you can't take the time to write a proper summary then there is little hope your story won't be a painful experience to read. Learning proper writing skills and grammar is NOT fun, (trust me I took many of those classes in college) but inversely READING terrible writing with poor grammar skills makes me want to gouge my eyes out with a spoon and burn the abomination I dared to read. If you want to be taken seriously as a writer then you MUST have a strong writing foundation.

Look at it this way: if a company wants to get customers to buy their product they need to make a great advertisement that catches their customers' eyes or at least make an ad that is memorable. If the advertisement doesn't do this then it has failed. Your plot summary is the advertisement for your story. If it sucks and you admit it sucks then why would I the "customer" bother reading anything else you wrote? It's most likely shit too! Don't freely admit your summary is crap, take the time to write a good one!

2. Your OC is the daughter/son/long lost kin of Optimus and/or some other main character in the Transformers universe
One of the many "Plot Horses" that has been beaten to death, resurrected, and then beat again. Look, we all know having Optimus Prime as a father would totally kick ass. After all, he is a very fatherly figure with honor, dignity, a strong moral compass, compassion for all, and immense strength, but what a CLICHÉ! Every story I have ever dared to read that features the long lost "child of the Prime" was utter crap. (There was one that was excellent but it was a delightful study of parenting as performed by a Transformer instead of a human and not: "I am the daughter/son of Prime…I am the hope of the future!" story.) But like many plots it is overdone and a complete let down with no forethought.

Another similar spin is the daughter/son of a popular Decepticon like Megatron or Starscream. Now this could be a way more interesting plot since a Decepticon would make a lousy if not horrendous parent. But too often the "long lost child" is not treated according to the personalities of any Decepticon. They are welcomed and protected with open arms as they slowly win over the sparks and minds of the Decepticon crew... and quite often shenanigans ensue. No one ever thinks that perhaps these war-hardened Decepticons want nothing to do with any bastard child they have spawned or would even consider taking responsibility for it. Not to mention they would most likely commit terrible, unspeakable acts to him/her. If you're going to write something like this it's not going to be a pretty family picture.
In short, it is best to create your OWN OC who has little to no parentage with any of the main characters unless you can delve into realistic relationships that actually MAKE SENSE and don't diminish the canon characters' personalities.

3. Your OC is the love interest of some main canon Transformer character…Autobot, Decepticon, or human.
Yet again, an OVERDONE plot that makes me roll my eyes with boredom. While we all "fangirl" over the thought of ourselves or our OC being the sole true love of our favorite characters, this is often written unrealistically or transforms the canon character (usually Starscream or any Decepticon) into something they are NOT.

If your OC and the canon character IMMEDIATELY have the hots for each other then who cares to read anymore? The chase is over and there is no suspense as to how or if they will develop a real relationship. Relationships can be very messy, confusing, and some downright ugly. Sometimes things go smoothly but there is a developmental process to it. This is usually a clue for me that the writer is under 18 years old or has no clue how a real relationship works. It is called DRAMA and it takes careful thought and planning to create good drama. Not simply, "Wow you're a great fighter and I totally respect you…let's be spark mates!" "OMG me too! I love you so much even though we just met." Gag.

Relationships are built, not magically sparked into creation.

My biggest peeve is when the OC is the love interest of a Decepticon. Especially the ones that go WAY too smoothly or turn the Decepticon in question into the caring, sensitive, and yet misunderstood softy who just joined the Decepticons for the cool badge. COME ON! Just because your OC shows up, Starscream is not going to stop being the egotistical, homicidal jerk he's been since he was created and fall in love with your character. That sounds like the girl whose boyfriend beats her and still thinks she can change him or the baffling, "he really didn't mean to beat my face to a pulp, he's just dealing with some stuff now. Anyway he PROMISED me he'd change so it's ok." You can't change the personality of a canon character just to suit your OC's needs and said OC can't change them either. And apologizing for OOC-ness doesn't make it magically all right to forgo a canon character's established personality. Use the creativity to establish your own OCs personality not the canons'.

4. You use Slash Pairings or Mpreg

(Now this one is about MY personal taste in reading and will not pertain to every fanfic reader but it is one of my top turn offs in Transformers fanfictions.)
I've NEVER understood or even liked this trend in transformers fanfiction but it is like bind weed, growing and infiltrated the internet. My biggest turn off too it is its lack of realism. There is NO canon admission that any characters are gay or engage in such relationships. Just because a character like Jazz happens to be in a scene with Prowl and they learn Circuitsu together is NO basis for a gay relationship or even if they ARE indeed into that lifestyle. Or because Ironhide and Ratchet are friends in battle doesn't mean they are lovers. There is such a thing as "brotherly love" which many mistake or wrongly construe as "Ooo they protect each other and show concern for each other in battle, they must be lovers!"

The WORST is the Megatron/Starscream pairing! YES I can freely admit they fight like an old married couple, but they are NOT gay for each other. Bosses fight with their managers, quarterbacks fight with their coaches, and generals' fight with their commanders, but that is no basis for a gay relationship either. And also…they HATE each other and often attempt to murder one another! It is a power struggle, not a secret gay affair that has never been admitted.

But even though I won't read this tripe that's not to say there isn't good writing on this subject out there…it's just not for me at all. That still is not excuse for these "drop of the hat" gay relationships permeating the genre. As I said before, any relationship must be thought through and not just magically offered up.

And Mpreg…if I even see that abomination marring your description, I run like it has the plague. It defies all logic of both biology and mechanical processes and cannot be taken seriously.

5. "Too Good to be True" OC a.k.a. Mary Sue or Gary Stu.
Developing a good OC is hard work and all too often we want them to be SO bad ass that we bestow them with too many good personality traits, strengths, or powers. (I myself have an early character like this) If your OC is good looking, everyone likes her/him, she/he can kick Decepticon/Autobot tailpipe all by herself/himself, and they received the Nobel peace prize while curing cancer and saving orphaned puppies then where is the development of character? No one is perfect and neither should your OC. (And a cool scar on the face isn't a justifiable flaw) Any Mary Sue Litmus test will help you further.

6. "I am the most tortured soul in existence" OC
Opposite the "Too Good to be True" OC is the most tortured soul OC. True it IS better to have a flawed character and perhaps with a dreary/bloody past. But these are often TOO melodramatic and the same exact story for every OC in this category. I'm instantly reminded of a 15 year old crying "No one understands me, everyone hates me, my boyfriend dumped me, my parents are dead, and my best friend shot my dog." And POOF! We have our tortured OC ladies and gents! Yes life can suck and some of the best drama stems from horrible occurrences in life... but really? Must your OC receive the "Suckiest Life in the Universe" award? And besides, Disney has already abused the dead parent(s) cliché must we also see it everywhere in fan fiction?

7. Begging for reviews
While this is more of an eye roller than a turn off to your story I'll put it this way: Reviews are earned not begged for. I know we as writers have to have those reviews and they make the writing all the more worthwhile…but don't beg. It's just sad.

8. Crackfic is not an excuse for a sucky story
Much like a gun, a crackfic should only be used by someone who knows how to use it and can actually write a real story. Don't get me wrong, we the authors get wacky ideas that must be purged from our brains or they'll take us over and too often they make no sense. I enjoy a well written piece of "crackfic" for a good laugh. (I've even written one or two to satiate the wild ideas buzzing in my brain.)  But when ALL you write is crackfics that sends up a warning flag that you probably can't write a real story or give an accurate character portrayal of a canon character. By saying "Crackfic!" in your description, that doesn't grant you the golden ticket of writing a confusing, plot-less drabble. (It's like reading a text between two people and you're not part of the conversation.) Crackfic can make sense and be enjoyable if you are a strong writer and not just trying to rewrite your Role -Playing conversation from the night before for the rest of us to read.

Oh, and if you do choose to do a crackfic, it's probably best that it remain a one or two chapter thing at the most. A novel of crackfic is just too much.

9. You automatically write the transformers as human characters.
Ok now this is something I had to endure during ALL of the Transformers movies where there was more focus on the humans than the robots...WHY oh WHY would I want to read about the Transformers if they aren't giant robots anymore?! That is the whole point of what makes Transformers so cool is the fact that they are giant ass kicking robots and not puny boring humans.To me this is just lazy writing because the author cannot put themselves outside the human realm and write from the perspective of a giant robot. It's also often used as a lazy excuse for some authors to get their human OC to boink one of the transformers without going through the process of how the hell a human and a robot could "get it on" anyway. (another plot point that is often written poorly)

Now I'll admit it's kinda fun to read a story where the transformers are turned into humans and must endure the human condition and its many embarrassing idiosyncrasies. There are several stories I love that deal with this and they are terrific! But please for the love of Primus don't write the Transformers as humans for no reason! It's just lame!

10. You write your story in the 2nd person narrative or you change your tense from 1st to 3rd
For those of you quirking your heads like a dog who heard a funny sound, let me explain. By writing your story in the 2nd person narrative, it sounds like you're writing an instruction manual instead of a story. These are three common points of view a writer can take:

• Use 1st person to indicate personal experience, evaluation, and/or opinion.
• Use 2nd person to instruct or address the reader.
• Use 3rd person to generalize the experience or situation.

In other words don't write: "You are running through the woods trying to escape a Decepticon. If you run right he'll squish you but if you run left he'll shoot you. What should you do?" This is a very confusing point of view and should only be reserved for cook books and "how-to manuals".

And if you're writing in 3rd person, then KEEP it that way! Don't randomly switch to first person and then back again. It gives the reader a jolt and makes the reading very painful. There's nothing wrong with delving into the main character's personal thoughts but it can be done in the 3rd person without shifting to 1st person.

11.And for goodness sake…PUT SPACES IN BETWEEN YOUR PARAGRAPHS!
The moment I see a huge, fat, block of text I say "Screw THAT!" and get the hell out of there. Just press the space button once in a while when your write! Sheesh.

And those are some clues…feel free to agree or disagree. And by all means if you find or know of a story that employs any of these and yet it is a great story anyway I'd love to read it.
Add a Comment:
 
:icontransfan990:
transfan990 Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2015
Good points. And while we're on the point if not humanising transformer, another thing you could have added is don't always cybertronify humans. 
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:iconalecxandria:
Alecxandria Featured By Owner May 24, 2015  Student General Artist
I'm not trying to be rude, but you do realize it's called FanFICTION for a reason right? Fan written fiction. Their is no right or wrong way to write a fanfic . Sure, some people could use a beta to fix their spelling and Grammer, but remember, not everyone on earth is very fluent in English. Some of those authors struggle to translate their writing so that everyone can enjoy them. Just because you don't like something, doesn't give you the right to say it's automatically crap if it has that in it. I think it's incredibly small minded of anyone who thinks that way. Fans write fanfiction to express their creativity and IMAGINATION . Not everyone likes cannon. In fact, did you know that fanfiction started by people writing slash stories about Spock and Kirk in the original star trek series And posting them online? That's how fanfiction started. WITH SLASH! I personally think that anyone who writes what is here is NOT a real Fanfiction fan. If you can't see the beauty in all aspects of fanfiction, then that is just closed minded and sad.

And again, not meaning to be rude.
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:iconart-is-my-bream:
art-is-my-bream Featured By Owner Mar 26, 2015
I really do like these it makes me happy seeing I'm doing things right with my fic. (not posted because I'm stuck in the middle.. And don't have a computer at the moment.) I don't dive to to deep into their (the oc's) past mostly there just I know him because of this or that. But the one thing I think I did well is the story's not just on them actually they play like the other only getting a story mainly about them once or twice (my story takes place after TFA ) now that I think about it my story is mostly about Optimus.
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:iconfrenchhornsrock:
frenchhornsrock Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2015
I am trying to write my first fanfiction right now and while it is not Transformers, I still think that what you are saying here can apply to almost any kind of writing. I am probably guilty of more than one of these, but I can't wait to favorite this and reference it in the future!

I can see that you've caught quite a bit of heat for your fourth point, I'm so sorry for that. :( As a straight female I like to read and write about heterosexual relationships (because, hey, I can relate to it!) and it does seem that fandoms are flooded with slash pairings now. And while that is fine and good for people who are into that, for those of us that aren't into that, it creates a sea of literature to be sorted through to find something that we are looking for. I must commend you for standing up for what you believe in despite the fact that it is has not been well received by everyone. :TipOfTheHat: I tip my hat to your courage.
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2015  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks! I truly appreciate that and thank you for your kind words :nod:
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:icondunerat:
dunerat Featured By Owner Nov 21, 2014
i'm coming to this late, but here's a couple of points:

The first Transformers movie was released in theatres in 1986.  i'm not sure how many of the Transformers stories you've immersed yourself in, but you've missed the original cartoon if you're leaving that out.

2: Is there some reason why you skipped over the part where Cybertronians do not reproduce sexually?  There literally can't be an effective or good "child of" storyline for that simple reason alone: Transformers do not have children.

3: Shouldn't the real problem here being that, as autonomous robotic beings, Transformers simply do not form relationships of any sort in the same way as humans?

4: One should probably also remember that there is NO cannon admission that any characters are NOT gay or engage in such relationships.  You preface this with a personal choice disclaimer, but your reasoning smells of prejudice.  If that's not what you meant, you should probably revise this point.  Since Transformers don't even actually have what we would recognise as sexes, complaining about their supposed "sexuality" doesn't make any sense.  Of course, neither does writing stories that involve sexuality, but that's a different problem altogether.

Otherwise, all good points.
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Nov 21, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks for the read! And I have seen the original TF series...80s kids. Cheesy good fun but lacking character/story depth to be sure.

I've heard that mentioned: Do/can the Transformers reproduce? Part of me believes they do but not in the biological sense. I've always seen it as two robotic beings combining their unique codes to form a new merged code to put into a lifeless shell that would become a new Transformer when exposed to the All Spark which would then give it official "life". The codes just help form the personality and abilities. (kind of like DNA I guess but with 1s and 0s). I do not however see them having "human-like" intercourse...

As for forming relationships I strongly believe they would given that they are self aware beings. Heck, even animals can form relationships with one another and the Transformers are well above them in intelligence.

As for the gay relationships, I just won't get into that because my view of it is not a popular one and I'll just get the ever cliche "homophobe card" thrown at me. But I'll just say the relationships that most people write don't make any sense and I can't get into it no matter how well it is written.
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:iconlovedatdonnie:
Lovedatdonnie Featured By Owner Nov 4, 2014
That's so true . I'm so tired of Mary Sue's and gay relationships. I'm trying to write my own TF fanfic, and I will definatly use this to make my story better. Thanks for posting this.
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:iconisabelpowell12:
Isabelpowell12 Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2014  Student Traditional Artist
Yeah your right... My fanfics probably crap.... BTW i don't care if u use my oc for tinman if your continueing it and the reason why I think mine is crap.. Is BC I'm a new devinant
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:iconisabelpowell12:
Isabelpowell12 Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2014  Student Traditional Artist
What I meant to say is that if your continuing youe fanfic tinnman u could use my oc ( but that's not important) and thx for makeing this fanfic guildline BC this rly helps
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Huh? I didn't understand a word you just wrote. Write like an intelligent adult please.
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:iconrandomfandomsgal:
RandomFandomsGal Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2014
I will now work and try my hardest to make a good TransformersxOC story. ._. Thank you for sharing this!!
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:iconhybridthcreepypasta:
HybridTHCreepypasta Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2014
I want to try to make a TransformersxOC kind of story, and some of these entries really helped. Thanks a lot! 
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Great! Glad you found it helpful!
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:iconerinprimette:
ErinPrimette Featured By Owner Apr 24, 2014  Student Digital Artist
Want to know something interesting? My first fanfiction I posted was a crossover between Transformers and Vocaloid, but that particular version had so many issues. Well, I'm revising the crossover and trying to make it interesting, even if not perfect.
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:iconerinprimette:
ErinPrimette Featured By Owner Apr 24, 2014  Student Digital Artist
Does anyone know how often Autobots and Decepticons sleep; and especially for how long?
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Apr 24, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Not really sure...but if I were to BS a guess I'd say it would take a few hours to fully "charge up". Unless of course they have a "super charger" that can recharge them in a few minutes. Then again...maybe they don't need to recharge like a phone does, maybe they just need Energon like a car needs gasoline.
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:iconweirdness-unlimited:
Weirdness-Unlimited Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Sadly this applies to all fan fiction. A well written fan fiction is very hard to come by and to be completely frank published novels are headed in the same direction. I haven't read one good book in exactly eight YEARS. That last decent novel I read was about an owl and geared toward kids ages ten to fifteen to give you an idea of how picky I am. I dabble in writing from time to time and I'm well aware of my syntax, grammar and spelling issues. Being dysgraphic I thankfully have an easier time with a keyboard but I still need help to check my chapters before submitting them, my husband helps but I'm currently looking for a beta reader to give me an extra hand zeroing in on errors and confusing blocks of text. That is why I won't be posting much more writing anywhere until I find somebody willing to skim over my crap and tell me which parts suck dirt with some level of legitimate honesty. (people tend to be too nice and forgiving. I need a blunt, ruthless beta.)

Admitting that you need help is half the problem, being influenced by other bad-fiction and those who eat it up is the other half of the issue most fan writers have to deal with.

My biggest issue with fanfiction is the story porn. I've seen pretty good work go down the toilet because suddenly every chapter is filled with sexual encounters. I'm tired of that junk, I want to read something with a plot that does not center on sex.
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:iconerinprimette:
ErinPrimette Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2014  Student Digital Artist
Do you know any TF fanfics that have some awesome combat sequences?
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Not in recent memory...I do know they are HARD to write. When I write them I have to act out the scene to see what would be feasible and yet cool. Taipan-Kiyru has some EXCELLENT fanfics and she writes action pretty well. I'd definitely recommend her.
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:iconalthedaus:
Althedaus Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2014  Student General Artist
Okay, I'm 16, high on sugar and hormones.
It's 2:41 am in the morning and I'm depressed as hell but this journal is making me cry.
In the good way I suppose since the cogs in my mind are whirring around a million miles an hour.

It's funny really; I used to write fanfiction about my OC; Scorpia back in 2011 but the thing is I barely knew what the internet was.
And none of that old (horribly written fanfic) falls into either of these categories.

Though in some ways it would fit the standards of 2# & 6#.
Scorpia is a human turned cybertronian. Her parents are mildly abusive (mostly minor neglet and tended to ignore her, nothing bad enough to call child services on) and later she becomes the 'adopted-daughter' of Soundwave. However, Soundwave isn't all 'Hey, lets be cuddly and play and I'll take care of you forever' his job after Katherine (Scorpia) is kidnapped by the decepticons is to just care for her well being. While, she's a hostage aboard the Nemesis.

Through the two/three years during the time that she is a captive; Soundwave cannot explain his urges to worry and fret over the young human whenever she's in an unfortunate accident or whatever. So it's a kind of a father-daughter-ish type bond and it's kind of not.
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:iconautobotprowl:
AutobotProwl Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2014  Hobbyist Artist
Much truth here but the homophobia down list turns me off. Opinions are like noses. We all have one.
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:iconmetaloonie:
Metaloonie Featured By Owner Jan 10, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Very entertaining and informative list and I agree with all of it. Personally I find the "tragic Sue" to be far more annoying than the "too good to be true Sue" but that's just me. All that whiny sobbing over how horrible the OC's life is depresses and irritates me all at the same time. Yaoi and slash always irked me because of the insane way fangirls love to pair off characters that are completely incompatible in canon. And why the overwhelming need to make otherwise straight characters gay? Breaking canon bugs me anyway. I mean we all have our own little head canon going on now and then but constantly breaking canon rules from the show (whichever version is being written about) is just plain bad writing and obvious attempts to play out the writer's dumb personal fantasies. 

As for the block of text thing,yeah that makes me cringe because I see that and it's like opening a super messy drawer to look for something and not knowing where to begin or end. It's like "How to I even start filtering through all this crap?" Or how about those fics that have chapters that are only a paragraph long each?

Begging for reviews! BEGGING FOR REVIEWS! I don't care how good the story is, if I see that at the beginning or end of a chapter of a story I want to explode! All it does is guarantee that I will NEVER review their story! And sometimes I may get annoyed enough to abandon the story altogether. 

What really sold me on this list of yours was what you said about humanizing Transformers. I couldn't agree with you more! If I wanted to read about humans then I'll go read something else. When I'm looking for Transformers fanfiction you'd better give me giant robots dammit! The whole "holoform" thing annoys me too for the same reason. Using that idea once or twice is fine but most writers tend to use it as much as possible so poor Starscream spends all his time looking pretty in his new human skin and never gets to fly around blasting Autobots. You know, that stuff that he always did in the cartoons that the stupid fanfiction is SUPPOSED to be based on? The only thing that I've seen that could be considered worse is when people turn our favorite Cybertronians into cats and dogs (but still have them be robots somehow... I don't get it either.). I don't know if you've ever seen that before but it does, unfortunately, exist. I say if you want your characters to be cuddly puppies or something then write about furries and leave Transformers alone!!!

Anyway, I've said my piece. I'll stop spamming your comment boxes now. 
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Jan 10, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
I don't mind at all! I enjoy getting feedback on my stuff (writing or artwork) and it's cool to know I'm hitting all the hot-button issues with other readers and writers. And yeah I've seen the dog and cat formers...weird...if you want to write a cat/dog story do so, but don't tape an already established TF's personality onto your dog/cat characters and expect TF fans to go gaga over it.
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:iconmetaloonie:
Metaloonie Featured By Owner Jan 10, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Exactly!
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:iconcrescentnubila:
CrescentNubila Featured By Owner Dec 27, 2013
*claps* I 1000000000% agree with everything you've stated in this journal! It's refreshing to see some common sense. Especially in today's world.

I also don't like that shoving peoples' private lifestyles and such down others' throats stuff either. That's all yaoi/yuri/slash is. Just homosexuality in real life. It's sickening.

That stuff along with the other pet peeves you've mentioned unfortunately has infected every movie/game/TV show/ out there.
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:iconspirit214:
spirit214 Featured By Owner Oct 6, 2013
I agree with you especially with numbers 6, 11, and 2 but 6 is my fave. I'm starting to see alot of these fanfics on Transformers but on other fandom fanfics like Black Butler(my anime obsession right know) I mean yeah your oc has to have flaws and I sometimes like devastating pasts like abuse or something really traumatizing but the clichè "my parents are dead and my boyfriend dumped me and my best friend lied to me" is so common now I can barely find a good fanfic to read anymore!!! MUST THE OC's PARENTS ALWAYS SUFFER TO THE FATE OF DYING!!! Also on # 4 I am a complete neutral on slash but I usually just skip mpreg. I don't usually read slash unless it has my undying attention in the first three or one chapters but mpreg doesn't suit my interest of stories. :/ But, THANK YOU FOR WRITING THIS XD
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Oct 6, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank you very much! I'm glad you enjoyed it!
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:iconspirit214:
spirit214 Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2013
Enjoyed it? I LOVE IT! You were so accurate I thought you were a mind reader XD I also thought I was the only one who thought this, but to see someone write something like this makes me feel much better ^^
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:iconjakkylovesscreamer:
JakkyLovesScreamer Featured By Owner Aug 10, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
This is very helpful! I agree with almost everything you said here, and it made me remember when i first started writing and my grammar was poor, i had huge paragraphs, and switched POVs constantly. Its cool to see how much better people get as they learn.

Anyways this helps with getting someone elses views on improvement, thanks
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank you for reading! Glad you enjoyed it!
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:iconbronysoldier:
BronySoldier Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013
Thank you sooo much for this!! I had to stop writing Transformers fanfics because I realized how crappy they were. But this little journal is really helpful and makes me want to go back and re-edit some of my stories! Thank you thank you thank you!!
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank YOU very much for reading :)
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:icontophat-trexxxy:
TopHat-Trexxxy Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
.............................
...........................................
.......................................................I.MUST.RETHINK.EVERYTHING!

Oh my god. Thank you. I /finally/ find something that can help me focus. Jesus Christ, I know this is in Fan-Fiction but my god it's two times worst in Transformers Role Play.

I just have a hard time differing from 1st person and 3rd person point of view. I need help with those.

Thank you.
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank YOU for reading it :) Yeah, when I first began writing (long long ago) I did that same thing, switching from 1st to 3rd randomly. It's just something you grow out of or train yourself to stop. A trick I use is if I'm writing in 1st person is I make it sound like I'm telling my friends a story about something that happened to me. I read it out loud to hear how it sounds. If it sounds awkward or you stumble reading it, it probably needs changed.
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:icontophat-trexxxy:
TopHat-Trexxxy Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Oh thank you dearly, I will certainly take that advise to heart.
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:iconhappyarmywife:
HappyArmyWife Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2013
All true... Alas, so much trash to wade through for decent stories. I will say that I liked your TC stories. Although I was sad the OC died, I can understand why.

Having ideas isn't the same as writing well thought out stories and connecting your material in an intelligent and interesting way. I certainly have an idea or two that I'm strongly kicking around the ol' cranium, but all my writing for the foreseeable future is going to be scientific research papers. Barf...
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Mar 7, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Ewww...I remember being forced to write Art History papers...they made writing ever so painful.
And you're absolutely right, having an idea isn't the same as writing it. You can tell these "writers" have so much going on in their head but it comes out as confusing fanfic vomit
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:iconlucasvn:
LucasVN Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2012
I'm not a writer myself, but as a reader, I have high standards when it comes to grammar and spelling. I simply will not read anything that has prevalent grammar or spelling issues or which lacks clearly defined paragraphs. And one mistake, namely, writing in present tense when narrating a scene in third person (a situation where past tense would be more appropriate) is so common that I could scream.

I am admittedly the completely opposite of you when it comes to slash. I am open and tolerant to all pairing orientations, but I do have some standards when it comes to the pairings themselves. I tend to approach pairings with a concern for plausibility, and how plausible a pairing is depends largely on the characters involved and the fanfic itself. Nevertheless, there are some pairings I am opposed to completely, and I am against any slash involving G1 Optimus and Ironhide. I'll take them with Elita and Chromia, thank you very much.

I agree mostly with your view on CanonXOC. There have been a few I have seen that did work fine, but usually they are twisted fantasies from the heads of crazed fangirls. And mary-sue-gary-stus seem to be more common than ever before. It's no wonder I barely go on ff.net anymore.
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:iconleapingblack:
leapingblack Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2012
I have to say that I agree with all of that. Especially the gay stuff. It already happens too much in real life, why stories too? It's some great advice. I'll take it to heart.
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:iconstormraven333:
StormRaven333 Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2012
Practice does make perfect, Yes. I find that, just to get back into the swing of creative flow, I have to read a well written fic out there, just to train my brain again. :D
And the 'whole bunched up block of text with no spaces'
O_o ...I TOTALLY agree with you there. Turn tail and RUN. Ain't NO-WAY I'm burning out my brain to even it out!
Nice list BTW. Neat for referring to! ^^
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Why thank you! Glad you read it :nod:
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:iconchimeradragonfang:
ChimeraDragonfang Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2012
Misspellings, abominable grammar and butchered sentence structure are my biggest turn-offs for any piece of writing. I too run for the hills if the story summary looks like the writer -- these people don't deserve to be called 'authors' -- had a seizure on their keyboard. Even if that part is passable and the premise intriguing enough to get me to check it out anyway, I need only read the first paragraph or so to get a feel for whether or not this person knows anything about good story flow.

I suppose self-inserts might fall under the Mary Sue header? Those take some skill/restraint to pull off, and I can recall a grand total of two occasions where I've seen it done well, both by the same author. Another story I was reading got abandoned partway in because I just couldn't deal with the self-insertion anymore. It was a TF/SG-1 crossover with a really neat idea behind the meshing of universes. I wanted to keep reading, but it went from "<self-insert> shows up, offers some assistance, leaves again" to "OH WHAT SORT OF CRAZY SHIT WILL <SELF-INSERT> DO NOW?" and I just couldn't deal with that anymore.

This is a very confusing point of view and should only be reserved for cook books and "how-to manuals".
And "Choose Your Own Adventure" books. Wonder if anyone has ever written a fanfic like that. I think it would have potential to be quite interesting (or at least mildly entertaining) if done properly.
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:icondiedott:
diedott Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2012  Student General Artist
THIS! :iconclapplz: You, deserve a prize for this.
It's been awhile since I've seen talk about this, and you covered all the points precisely and accurately. Everyone should follow this!
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
thanks! That icon is great btw
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:iconshining-galaxy:
Shining-Galaxy Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
LOL, I have to admit....While I was reading this I was thinking of my OC in a TF fic I'm doing....I'm kind of wondering...she's the sister of Carly Spencer and is Hide's future love interest (Maybe a bit cliche...) but I'm not jumping right into the love story...I hate it when people do that. Or they use text language in a story. As for the Mary Sue....a part of me thinks so, but another part (and some of my reviewers) haven't said anything about her being/becoming a Mary Sue....Perhaps I'm safe?

Now, what I hate is when people go and ASK you in a PM or a review to read and review their story. I absolutely HATE it when they do it. On Wattpad, there's this person, if they see I'm online they come on and ask me to read/vote/comment on their story (and it's Transformers). I give everyone the benefit of the doubt and I do look at it, and I didn't like it....Now, everytime he asks I say that I'm busy. But that is one of my BIGGEST pet peeves regarding stories.

Slash....Definitely not a fan. I don't have any desire to read/write it. But if that's your thing, I say all the power to you. Slash in Transformers? definitely not. What I can't stand in any type of fic is when people pair characters with OC's/Canon characters and they don't click, that the author just put them together just because they want too. You can tell that from reading but they put whoever with whoever and screw trying to find a plausible way for them to click...

MPreg......I don't mind Mpreg....Normally I don't read something like that but at the same time, depending on how a fic is written/fandom it's in determines whether or not I read it.

And wow...I just wrote a book....^^; Sorry about that....
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
No problem I like to read others thoughts on the matter :nod: It's way better than the one word comment
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:iconmetalhyena:
MetalHyena Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh god thank you! I just recently started reading fanfics (your Thundercracker one was the first I ever read) and I am very disappointed with most of the transformers stories out there. The thing that bothers me the most is the grammatical errors! I attempted to read a tfp fanfic and found only TWO periods in the whole chapter, not to mention choppy sentences and misspellings.
But I must say that I agree with everything you've said in this journal!
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:iconfire-redhead:
Fire-Redhead Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks! Glad I could be your first :nod:
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:icongatekat:
Gatekat Featured By Owner Oct 29, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
On #4. Sorry to break your brain, but both are canon.

Slash ... the pairings may or may not be (and may or may not make any sense to you), but in Spotlight: Arcee it is stated point blank that all Cybertronians are gay, because there are no genders (femmes are just a frametype, no different than a seeker or convoy) and they do fall in love. This has been repeated in more than one panel by the creators themselves. Possibly not true in all continuities, but it's canon in the comics at least.

On mechpreg (Budding) ... that's how the The Swarm [link] happened. Maybe not written as many authors write it, but the concept that Cybertronians can reproduce from their frame in an organic-like way, including sexually in some continuities, is very much canon.

Not that either is any reason for you (or anyone) to like it, but it's not good to claim something is wrong just because you don't like it when it has a foundation in canon.
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