Discussion related to the topic MarySue

Forum : All About Writing : MarySue

Posted at: Mar 31, 2008 at 11:43 AM 
Ever heard of a Mary Sue? A Mary Sue is a character in a story who is almost too good to be true, overwhelms all the other characters, and is basically the author's wish-fullfillment fantasy. In other words, the author is basically trying to insert him/herself into the story.

But, of course, we all have fairly elevated opinions of ourselves, don't see our own character flaws like others do, so when we try to insert our own character into the story, we end up creating an annoying, unbelievable character.

Anyway, I happened to stumble on the origin of the term today, and thought it was interesting.

In Star Trek "fanfic", teenage girls often wrote stories in which a female who is NOT part of the regular cast essentially upstages everyone, doing things that Kirk, Spock, etc. could never have figured out, and then (often) having one of the main characters fall in love with her.

Well, one Trek writer, a woman named Paula Smith, decided to poke fun of this kind of writing, so she created a story called "A Trekkie Tale", which starred...

Lieutenant Mary Sue.

There you have it. From there the term expanded outside of the trek universe, and people often refer to an author's self-insertion into the story as a "Mary Sue" character.

Josiah T.
Posted at: Mar 31, 2008 at 11:54 AM 
Alright... I have to try very hard to avoid that sort of thing in my own writing.

Posted at: Mar 31, 2008 at 2:15 PM 

Posted at: Apr 4, 2008 at 1:59 PM 
Ok, point taken.
Forum : All About Writing : MarySue

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