Name or Pseudonym:
Tipper, i.e. Meg Tipper



Where are you from (Country and/or State)?
Boston, New York and Cambridge, England is where I spend most of my time.

How did you get into the Mag7 fandom?
Read a story on about the same time that TNN started replaying the show. Got addicted all over again (I had caught four or so eps of the second season on CBS before they stopped playing it.)

How long have you been writing Mag7 fanfiction?
Nearly four years

How has your writing changed since you first started?
I hope it has improved, and in some ways it has. My grammar is a little cleaner, and I'm no longer afraid of long sentences. Unfortunately, writing like a lawyer has caused me some steps back as well. So, who knows. Sort of like college essays – when you look back, some are brilliant and some are just awful.

Is this your only fandom, your major fandom or one of the many?
This is the only one I write in.

What is it about this fandom that you like?
The fact that I have seven characters to play with, and in particular, the character of Ezra Standish is a lot of fun to write.

Did you like the Old West before Mag7 or did that come afterwards?
The original movie was always one of my top ten favourite films, but I was no where near as in love with the genre as I am now.

Did you see the show before you got into the fandom or after, or haven’t you seen the show yet?

I had. Seeing Anthony Starke in the credits hit a nerve, and I was quickly addicted…then CBS cancelled it, and I forgot about it…then TNN brought it back about the same time that I discovered fanfiction. Timing is everything.

Is the show your main interest and the fandom comes after or the other way around and why?
Fanfiction, at this point, is probably my main interest – writing primarily, but reading as well. Then the show. Then the fandom as a whole.

What are you working on right now?
The fifth book in my Four Kingdoms story, lots of bits and pieces of stories in the NYC AU I created, and some challenge stories. The fifth book is probably the one I need to really finish, since I have no excuse not too. It's written in my head, I just need the time.

How and where do you write?

At home when I can, which usually means weekends, some weeknights, if I get home at an okay hour from work. Sometimes, though rarely, at work, when I need to vent some steam.

What’s the hardest part about writing in this fandom?

The distance from the show. It's been a long time now, but I have never found another show or another set of characters that has captured my imagination enough to write about.

Why do you write?
Because I have to. Little too much like breathing now.

What writers do you think you've been influenced by?
Terry Pratchett and Glen Cook, because they're satirical and colourful and love action. Virginia Woolf and Tolkien because they know how to paint a scene and create an atmosphere. Dostoevsky, Chekov and Ibsen because they created real people in their stories, characters who were desperately flawed and yet you still fell in love with them anyway. Raymond Chandler and Hemingway because I love how their minds worked. Shakespeare because he wrote the stories we're all influenced by, even if we don't know it. And, of course, by innumerable fanfiction writers. Goodness knows how many tricks I've stolen from them!

What advice would you offer to beginning writers?
Never be afraid that you're not good enough. Everyone thinks that. A little bit like wanting to be an actor. There are thousands of actors struggling for parts, but we only ever see the same faces over and over again on the movie screen. Its not because, say, Nicole Kidman is somehow a cut about everyone else, it is only that she happened to hit the right note at the right time and the world carried to stardom....So, there are hundreds of thousands of writers, and while, say, Stephen King is a brilliant writer, I could guarantee that there are hundreds like him out there, who had their books rejected at the wrong time by the wrong people and who gave up as a result. So, my advice, if you want to write but are afraid to, don't let that stop you. And then don't keep your writing in a trunk to be discovered after your death. Why wait? Get it out there, take the critique and the praise, and it will quickly become an addiction.

Where do you get your inspiration for your stories from?
Everywhere. Really. A song. A sign on a bus. A play. A TV commercial. A conversation. A picture on the wall. Another fanfic story. A newspaper article. A dream. A movie. A joke. To get back at someone by making them a villain. A sound. A place. A shop window. An old photo. A holiday memory. Slipping on snow. An overheated office. A legal judgement. An opinion. A wish. A challenge. A nursery rhyme. You get the idea.

Do you read any of the other AU’s (ATF, LB and so on) out there and do you have a favourite?
Besides my own <bg>, sure, but I don't really have a favourite. All I care about is if it’s written well, is a great story and has Ezra somewhere near the front. If yea, I'm there.

What do you look for as a reader of fanfiction?
A good story. Grammar, characterizations, canon/fanon, all take second place. Can't read slash, though, mainly because most stories turn them into emotional washouts, and I don't like that. I like the men to be men. I have no problem with men on men, so long as they are still men.

Do you think there's anything missing in the fandom?
Types of stories or certain characters that you'd like to see more of? I think Josiah and Nathan don't get enough play. I'm guilty of that as well I know, but Josiah in particular has potential to be a really rich character, and he's mostly ignored.

Are there any characters or situations that you don't think you'll ever write?
Slash, I suppose, just because I don't think of them that way.

Who’s your favourite character and why?
Oh, that's easy. Ezra. To me he's the most complex and I love his flaws. The bad guy trying to be good. Plus, his way with words, his bearing, his smile, his darkness, his light, his eyes and his heart all wed me to that character completely.

Who’s your second favourite character and why?
Ah, now, that's tough. Toss up between Vin and Josiah. I like Vin because he plays off Ezra so nicely, so the two of them together is fun to write. Josiah because I like his presence and the richness of his character and the underlying violence he has buried inside. NT's SouthBridge stories draw him well.

Who’s your favourite bad guy and why?
Ooh, you mean from the show. Well, that's either Stuart James or Ma Nichols. Because I don't think either is purely evil. Wickes, Royal, O'Shea and the others were pretty much just evil. Ella and Reverend Mosely were insane. James…is not so much evil, in my mind, as just someone who is losing his power and railing against it without success. Royal wanted to expand his empire. James wanted his to just stay the same. In some ways, I can understand that. Ma Nichols is a bit like Tony Soprano – not evil, exactly, just, when she gets mad, she brings the house down. ("My justice is the apocalypse.")

What’s your favourite episode and why?
Ah, Vendetta. They all played a role, all had some great lines, and that fight scene at the end was beautiful. It even had humour.

What’s your favourite story and why?
You mean in the fandom? Don't have one, and probably wouldn't say if I did. I have a short list of favourites, but if I picked, it would be something old, only because I tend to remember the older stories better because they were the first I read and were so inspiring to me.

Any favourite author?

If you mean in the fandom, same answer as above.

What storyline would you most have liked to see in season 3?
Anytime Ezra has to face his demons, I'm happy.

If you could change one thing about the show, what would it be?
The fact that it was cancelled. <bg> No, okay, seriously, um….okay, I would wash Chris's hair. Really. It bugged me.

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