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Una Vignette P5

Una Vignette P5 published on 11 Comments on Una Vignette P5

I love all the little character directing touches Eren added.  Una going through Blue’s book, and snapping the book closed, were his additions.  I think they’re great little moments that say a lot about Una’s mood.

Cory and I have been binge-watching Columbo on Netflix, before it goes away in January.  We’ve developed a head cannon for the show that entertains us almost as much as the show itself (which is quite good).  I’m sure other people had similar thoughts on it while the show was airing, but we add to it with each episode.

Columbo is a detective that puts on a bumbling act to throw off the murderers he’s investigating.  He frequently mentions relatives, particularly his wife, but also aunts, nephews, in-laws, cousins, etc.  Yet we never meet them.

“You’re a very infuriating man, Lieutenant!”

“Yeah, my wife says that to me all the time.”

“I bet she does.”

So here’s the head-cannon we’ve build so far:  Columbo has no wife.  In fact, he has no family at all.  He’s actually an orphan who was picked up as a ward of the state and raised from a young age to be the ultimate investigator of high-profile cases, which is why he managed to get the position and leeway in the force that he has.  His stories about his relatives are all fabrications, carefully crafted over years of a lonely childhood fantasizing about what a big family would be like.  Everyone on the force knows this, but humors him.

“Yeah…you better call your wife and tell her.” 

Whenever he does need to make a call to “his wife” he actually calls up a buddy on the force, who follows his lead based on whatever cues Columbo’s giving him in order to help him create a cover for his case.  This buddy does so only with begrudging tolerance, but he can’t deny Columbo’s results so he keeps playing along.  The only family Columbo has is the dog he got as part of a cover story, but then didn’t have the heart to get rid of.

…I told this to someone and they said it was just too sad.  Ah well.  I can’t seem to write any other kind of story.  Maybe someday I’ll learn to write an upbeat, bouncy story…but I just find them so much less interesting.

Have you ever come up with your own personal head-cannon for a story?

11 Comments

Children visit this site. Moderate your language accordingly.

I am excite to see where this conversation goes.

Also, I have so many headcanons it’s not even funny. I mean, I write fanfic, but even for stuff I don’t like, I’m inventing headcanon. Like with Fantastic Beasts recently, I have a horrible headcanon which I will not divulge because spoilers, but it made the movie work better for me, since otherwise the characterization was quite thin.

I think weaker characterization encourages headcanon development, especially if there’s POTENTIAL but everything doesn’t QUITE deliver…of course, good characterization can also lead to headcanons for the same reason, but different kinds of potential.

…maybe headcanons have more to do with us than the content, now that I think about it. XD

I always prefer the cruddy version because it’s usually a case of something that would be perfect with one tiny change, and thinking about the way those changes could work improves my story building skills.

And I think headcanons definitely say something about the person coming up with them more than the medium. If you say “I headcanon this character as gay/trans/abused/autistic,” you’re often saying, “I don’t see myself or the people I love represented in this story, but I want them to be.”

My big headcanons right now are about FFXV. It’s recent, so I won’t post any spoilers, but I have a lot of ideas about the ending of the game and what it means, as well as certain characters’ pasts.

Lots of headcanons about Dragon Age, too. Someday I’ll even write some of them down.

Huh…I always figured he had a family who were embarrassed because he was a cop. Like it wasn’t something he took home with him, there was his cop job and his family life. I thought everyone made up back stories about fictional characters though, you mean I’m not the only one? I can’t engage with a book if I don’t make up some sort of other life for the characters. Unfortunately, that means I also tend to dislike some books and stop reading them because the characters are so one-dimensional, you just can’t get interested in them. Or they annoy me on so many levels I can’t get past it for the story. No author should fill out their characters completely, you have to be able to make your own stories about them and read it to suit you. Harry Potter and Mockingjay were good there, enough of the character life to catch you, but enough left out to make up the rest of it. They let you get into the story and fit your concept of the character around it. And I really love it when a movie or TV show casts someone who catches the character perfectly. Again, those two books/movies were done really well. I know there are older ones, those are just the two that come to mind.

I think your theory makes just as much sense…actually, yours makes far more sense, Cory and I just like making out-there crazy theories just for the heck of it. We like playing with the idea more than creating something reasonable.

I think your points about books are really interesting! There’s a lot of debate on how much an author should share with an audience from the writer’s point of view, but I’ve never heard it presented from the reader’s perspective before. About creating space for the reader to engage their imagination in helping to co-create the character through the process of reading. What’s fascinating about that is how much more alive that sounds as an experience. It’s not that the author is trying to craft a narrative that is identical for every reader (something many writers aim for) but rather that the author wants something that every reader responds to differently. It creates an entirely different role and dynamic for both reader and author!

I never really got into making headcanons – somehow it feels like taking somebody else’s toys (or kidnapping their kids, lol). Theorizing how something was going to go or why something happened, sure.. but making up my own personal version of the story seemed like overstepping, somehow… breaking some kind of sacred verisimilitude. And I was usually disappointed when the way I wanted things to go wasn’t what ended up happening in The One True Canon, anyway. I’ve read a few fanfics that I really wished were canon, though… (More power to fanfic authors – writing them myself just isn’t my thing.)

I can totally get your perspective on headcanons. It’s interesting, some shows I’ll create all sorts of ideas and theories for, and others I’ll feel exactly the same as what you’re describing. Imagining my own stories just feels…wrong. The better the story, the less inclined I am to desire an alternate version. Although I too have seen some amazing fanfictions that beat out the original narratives. I guess stories are often problem-solving simulations. There are many ways to solve problems, and to create them. Sometimes the original writers solve those problems in really satisfying ways…but when they don’t, it leaves a gap that sometimes a fanfic author fills in a far more interesting or engaging way.

I do like stories where the WORLD is sprawling and immersive enough to make up your own characters and plots outside of the “canon” events… and come to think of it I’ve RP’ed canon characters when I feel a close enough connection to them to do them justice, which is sort of like collaborative fanfic, I guess. But it’s kind of like… a story feels less Real if you can just take its internal Truth and fiddle with it to your liking.

I think part of where my view on the whole thing comes from might be the experience of growing up ace, trans, and (for that matter) non-Christian in a conservative community. Everybody had their own “headcanons” of ME that were completely off the mark, but I had no practical power to correct them or do anything about it. So I don’t really enjoy projecting my own preconceptions onto others… including fictional characters, when the author is the only person who really knows them backwards and forwards. Except if I’m rp’ing/writing collaboratively with someone… though I think that falls more under speculation, since they still have the final say over whether my take on the character is correct or not.

It seems to be a careful dance between author and reader sometimes. How much to reveal, think of book you read that was tedious because every little detail was belabored upon, and not enough information about a character to engage your interest. Memory isn’t what it used to be so I can’t say on any specifically, or I just choose to forget about the bad ones! Decided long ago that life is too short and too busy to bother reading those kind of books. I’ve seen many webcomics that have the same problem. Some may have wonderful artwork, but the story is less than readable, though I can live with poor artwork and a good story on the same premise. Your artwork is very good, the little details do make a difference, especially in a slow patch or in explaining a plot point, and the characters are genuinely interesting and make me want to continue reading more. I read about a 100+- each week and don’t waste time on bad ones.

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