December 24, 2010

WayWords with QuantumFizzx, author of The Plan

The wonderful and charming author of the wildly popular story The Plan, Miss QuantumFizzx herself, took time out of her busy day of posting, reading, and preparing for the Holiday to have a little chat with me about what’s happening with her since the story reached epidemic proportions.

First, I want to start by thanking you for allowing me to pester you with a few questions. I'm honored you chose me to speak to.

The success of The Plan is nothing short of amazing. Did you think this type of story, with the constant updates would take off in the way it has? What do you think of its success?

Did I think it would take off like this? No. Not in my wildest imagination. It's more like, did I think it would take off at all? I was mentally/emotionally bracing myself to beg the same handful of fic friends to pretty-please read it (at the leisure) and throw some reviews at it so it didn't sit there gathering dust like my other stuff.

I don't know what to think about the success. I really thought my time in the sun was when the pics of Rob at EclipseCon showed up everywhere. The success is so surreal. Right now, I'm more concerned that it isn't longer.

So, now that it's topped, what, 11,000 reviews, how does it feel? Is it a tad overwhelming? The reviews, as I said before, are just pouring in, do you get a chance to read each one? I know there's no possible way to reply to that kind of volume!

Minus the "tad" and we'd be close. Careful what you ask for, huh? I have been reading everyone until mid-day on the 23rd. There was a huge problem with the timing (a lovely, unforeseen complication of posting in real time = Christmas must actually fall on Dec. 25th) that I am still trying to work out. I'm taking time out of my writing/massive freak-out session for this. A nice break.

What would you like to say to your readers here? I'm also sure they ask many questions and have many opinions. Do you get a lot of criticism along with the positive? What do you say the them?

There was one review early on that said some pretty rude stuff & I won't give that individual the satisfaction of repeating what they said. But, everything was overwhelming positive that I read or heard about...until the first lemon. That backlash was unexpected.

I've had some dialogue with a few people were big supporters early on & didn't like the direction I took it. I completely understand the points that they brought to the table, in as much as I can see where one might garner those thoughts from reading it. I sincerely appreciated the ones who reached out to actually discuss it with me. It's very easy to say harsh things in a relatively anonymous environment. I've heard and seen a lot of negativity and know some really lovely people who were deeply hurt by it.  It was rather nice to be unknown/unseen myself, but I felt for them. This may not be an actual answer to your question, but I have a really great support structure with a fan friend on London and several folks at Fanfic Anon on Facebook. They are ridiculously compassionate & the negativity just doesn't seem to creep in there. It's my happy place. One thing that surprised my was all the people who needed help with the time conversation. I felt so badly for I finally put in a website link. I figured there had to be some who wanted know but weren't asking. I did have one reviewer share that her home page is now a clock set to Central time...and he lives in Argentina. I've not been able to address much of what has come through, good or bad. That's a shame as this is a fast run & by the time I can get to them, the initial postings will be past. There were some comments I actually caught on Twitter were people were saying it wasn't their thing. I don't really consider that negative. Not everything is for everyone.

So, I asked some people on the twitterverse if there was anything they wanted me to ask you. I got a few *snicker* questions.

Why did you choose this type of format? The multiple updates, to make it clear. From what you've said, the updating schedule must be playing havoc on your real life obligations. Have you had to give up anything to post? Other than sleep of course!

What was your inspiration for both writing the story, and the updating schedule?

Ok, as for the format, etc. It really is ironic how this worked out. I'll just write a list of how it went.

- Talked with friend about not seeing any/many Aggressive Sex Bellas (who were not Dommes) & wouldn't it be fun to have one who.
Then, I..,

- Decided that it would be the most fun to read/write about her if she got a one-up on the guy who had been pushing her around

- She should be really confident in every way and really competent...but not with a serious, emotional relationship. I thought this would be the area to let the character "grow"

- I didn't want serious. So "funny" is in the timing. I felt short, clipped, compartmentalized bits of her thoughts would be her - especially since she is so organized and into heavy-processing everything. This is how she keeps things straight. Like I said, compartmentalized. Focus on breakfast and coffee and packing up. Then, that's behind her and she is onto cataloging the next thing going on.

- One of the first things I thought of was "Edward Cullen is in the shower. No other status possible."

- Then, I saw the prologue in my mind. This ultimate confrontation. That's when I knew who they were & how I wanted to get them there. If I was going to have these short bursts, I knew I had to explain it upfront to anyone who might read. I wasn't going to wait a day in between posting a 5 line update to put up the next. I didn't want to post 7 in rapid succession either.

Plus, Twi-Fic promotions tweets all my updates for every story ever since they reviewed The Blessing Ring. I thought having "Update: The Plan" 7 times in a row would annoy people. So, I decided to space them out. Then, I just had this funny idea that since I was writing it like her texts/journal/planner...maybe I should just assign the times of day to the updates & post them accordingly. I might be fun for me & both people who would read it. So, bottom-line, the idea germinated in the hope of not annoying people with announcements of multiple updates. Then,  I just hoped it would be fun for the few people who chose to read it.

So, you said you've seen the ending, is it written? I can't imagine you're sitting down multiple times a day writing the updates. Will the readers be surprised by it? Do you plan on posting something in this form ever again? And finally, what's next after this? Besides getting back to sleeping!

I may do a sequel. I don't think I'm giving anything away to say that doing this in real time means the things that happen to the characters would need to be plausible within the small time frame of the story. I think having the declarations of love was about the limit that could be "rushed" in this context. It ends happily. But, these are 2 people who can spend an entire day looking at purchase orders to find discrepancies. I don't want to say more, but I'll reiterate that it does end happily. There is room for a sequel. So, I might write that. I have ideas. It rather saddens me that I didn't make it longer as so many people seem to be having so much fun with it. But, yes, for the most part it was completely written ahead of time. The style looks simplistic, but it takes me a long time. Working with word choices, etc. Pruning words. Maybe other people could crank it out, but I just can't. I wrote the "probably" scene between 4am and when it posted later this morning. But, that was an exception.

And finally, what's next after this? Besides getting back to sleeping! I have a ton of things I want to read. So, I'm going to spend a bit of time doing that. Then, if people actually want a sequel, I guess it's off to do that. I'd post a sequel the same way, because it makes sense for Bella. If there is no real interest (I am truly nervous about the end of this, if you can't tell) then I'll go back to a story I'd started and left when The Plan wouldn't let go of me & I felt like I had to write it.

I hope readers are surprised but pleased by the ending. But, the signs have been there. I'm certain there is no way I can end this that no one has thought of. I can only hope to to it in a way that might be unique and hopefully satisfying.

I think people have a lot of theories about where these 2 characters are going. I can see the reasons for those who think it's going down a BDSM route. I think the characters may have these latent tendencies. That's not this story. This story is 2 confident but flawed people deciding to take a chance on one another.

Okay, a couple more questions, and I'll let you go to your festivities.

Do you regret your "real time" posting? How much has it interfered with your regular life?

I only regretted when 1) I had to run my son to urgent care & it was touch and go about getting back to post at the announced time. 2) when I discovered that I was wrong about the day Christmas fell on (Still so embarrassing) and had to rearrange and rewrite.

My dear Sue (Roselover34) requests that you name 3 songs on Edward's ipod that describe his "assward self".

I'll have to this about this one for a while. Can I message you later? I can tell you that I feel Bella's theme is "Paris" by Grace Potter & the Noturnals. The 2nd verse words don't fit (as they talk about a swing) but the general attitude and the idea of playing a part to the best of your ability, to the ultimate result. That's her, to me.

Will you be posting tomorrow, or will Bella take a holiday?

I will post tomorrow. 1 post.

I can't thank you enough for the time you've taken out of your day to speak with me. I really appreciate both the time to answer my questions, and writing this wonderful story that's really a breath of fresh air in the fandom. I hope you have a wonderful holiday, and enjoy the rest of your day!


  1. Lovely interview! Very informative too! You have my support in whatever you choose Q !

  2. Wow...Thanks for doing this interview QFX!! Great to get the background of the story. It's been so much fun and a great way to add some humor/wildness to the holidays.

    Thanks for writing The Plan.


  3. That was a great interview. I loved hearing how QFX came up with the concept of the story. How cute that the real time posting came out of not wanting to inundate ppl with TP updates...LOL. As far as I'm concerned, whatever convinced you to do it this way works for me. I agree with Wayward Pusher, it's a breath of fresh air...that's what's sooooo fun about it. I'm squeeeeeing that there will be a xmas post even if just one. I don't know how QFX has done this. I love the 4am postings even when I haven't been able to be awake to read them, it must makes me all happy knowing we will know what they are doing at 4am. But, the commitment that QFX has had is stellar in my book. Sequel in this same format...I'm in even before I know the ending...this has just been sooooo fun. I actually really loved knowing that it was short as well. I can't imagine doing this kind of posting for a long period of time. Thank you both for doing this interview, I loved the questions and answers.


  4. Enjoyed the interview. Thanks for taking the time to do it.

  5. Great interview!! I was happy to find this. Ive been wondering how she was handling everything. I've been reading The Blessing Ring and it's outtakes. I hope many more people read it as well as it is phenomenal!!

  6. Loved the interview! I was so excited when I heard about it, as I have been wondering what on earth possessed QFX to take on such a project. Don't get me wrong, I'm soooo glad she did!
    I can't believe that anyone has had anything negative to say about this - I think its absolutely brilliant!

  7. Great interview! I really enjoyed the peek at Qfizzx's creative process. The Plan is a really fun story and I'm enjoying it a lot.


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