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Test Interview with Master Ratava of "Avatar: The First Skybender"

Sokka as therapist This blog is an official interview of the Fanon Fact Finders. We hope you enjoy it!

This is a test interview starring:
Master Ratava, author of Avatar: The First Skybender.
Hosted by IsabellaLover, for the Fanon Fact Finders.

Starting Off

Me: Thanks for coming, Ratava!

Ratava: Thank you, Isa, for having this time =)

Me: You're welcome.

Question 1

Q: What inspired you to write Avatar:The First Skybender?

A: ATFS is a work in progress already. I dare say that if I start to point every influence that got me to where I'm now on its plot, it'd be a long list. Well, what inspired me to write ATFS were the lacking of complexity in ATLA. I dislike easy things, I'm somewhat an easy-learner, so the harder the more exciting for me to get and keep my attention focused.

Question 2

Q: If you were to rate your fanon on a scale of 1 to 10, what would you rate it as?

A: My fanon is, at the present time, composed by one prologue and two chapters. No one can rate a story this short. It's unfair. The plot is yet to tell what is going to happen, and the characters aren't yet sufficient strongly developed for them not to fall in comparison with other canon characters, or worse, not have an identity well built. And, even if I know what is on my planning schedule, everything still can be changed, undone, re-done, not-done, until the Definite Version comes.

Question 3

Q: How many chapters/books do you hope to have altogether for your fanon?

A: ATFS is divided differently from the original series. In ATLA we see chapters being grouped in books. I hope I can write this planning idea through. Because ATFS plot is about not only the "Avatar Quest", but some "Political Revolutions". At least I hope I can get eight big/large/wide sections: that I call Volumes. So in ATFS it's something like that: Chapters < Books < Volumes. Per book I hope the plot/script circle fits well into at least twelve chapters. I don't like fillers, but since I'm rebuilding Avatar World through my point of view, filling with descriptions of places, or cultural traits don't hurt. I guess I evade this question quite well, instead of saying "I don't know", at the first place.

Question 4

Q: What is/are your favorite genre(s) of book to read and/or write?

A: Fantastic Fantasy. Not only medieval, or futuristic (sci-fi). I like mysteries, so if they're on suspenses, or policials, it's fine to me. But it's been quite long (actually more than ten years) that I'm embraced by the fantasy genre.

Question 5

Q: Do you base any of the main characters on yourself, such as physical appearances or personalities?

A: Actually it's quite difficult not to base characters on real people. Until the moment none of my characters resemble myself, physically speaking; but every one of them (I mean, the main ones) do have at least small parts of my personality. By the way: every Grandmother figure resembles my own Grandmothers.

Question 6

Q: Do you base any of the main characters background history on your own life, such as family or personal issues?

A: Yes, who wouldn't? The female character on the prologue; she's ill/sick, and so I am (depression). The new character that will be on chapter three (not yet published) has family issues, similar to some friendship issues I used to have. And, well, Koori is going to become a little more like myself in future chapters.

Question 7

Q: Besides your own fanon, what fanon would you say is your favorite?

A: I've only read completely Energy Saga. 8D I love it. Ghosty is my "soul-twin-brother", I like the way he thinks the plot/script. :B

Question 8

Q: What authors on here and/or in real life do you like most?

A: On my profile page, there's a box of "Writing Influence", that answers that. ^_~ And the authors that are on my "Reading List" are the ones that got grip of my attention here at some point.

Question 9

Q: Are you an editor or quest writer of another fanon story? If so, which ones, and how has your experience been with them? If not, then would you like to be?

A: I'm beta-reading Ghosty's Energy Saga. It started because he chose me to interview him in the first place. Then, as his fanon was in my reading list, before FFF existed, and as I am planning on doing reviews of those... So, now I'm his beta-reader, and he's mine. ^_^ I'm also beta-reading Republic City: Rise of Equalists, from Sirondil, and The Cat Owl's Skies & Airbending.

Question 10

Q: With your fanon, do you like to post the chapters as soon as you're done with them, or do you wait until you have others to post sooner?

A: I would love to be able to write and to wait until the next one or two chapters were already written to publish the one from the beginning of the sentence, but I can't. I love eating cake/pudding warm/hot, right after they get out of the oven (I only wait enough for my mouth/tongue not to get burnt). I really like to post them as soon as they are written, revised, beta-readed, and revised again. The time they spend ready, but in my computer, don't get me any feedback. And this is what I want the most. A reader that wants to make a difference must say something; even if it is not what I would like to hear/read; that's even better, because, despite getting haters, good well-done and straight criticism don't hurt my feelings. What hurt my feelings is lacking of honest and sincerity.

Question 11

Q: What do you think of the results of the recent Fanon Awards?

A: I dare say that as a really recent registered user (and by all means, I wasn't ever an anonymous contributor here or at any other wiki) I only voted for the cathegories that I have felt my vote wouldn't be misplaced, in spite of my lack of participation (I mean: fanon reading in an uncompromised way).

Question 12

Q: If you could become a bender, what kind of bender would you be?

A: Definitely a skybender ^_~ Hehe, well, I'm kidding. From the original series the bending I would choose is firebending. But I'd love to know some chi-blocking as well.

Question 13

Q: Who is your favorite character and what is your favorite episode from A:TLA and/or LoK?

A: Having favorites is something that is much more excluding than including...

  • So, I have favorites for each nation, but since recently I'm re-watching ATLA I have to add King Bumi to my male favorite characters along with Zuko and Iroh. I like Aang too, but he is the fourth in the line. About female favorites the podium is Katara, Azula, Toph; KatAzToph (It sounds like catastrophe) ^_~
  • Talking about episodes is kind of a hard time, some of them I like because they introduce some of my favorite characters, others, because of fighting/chasing scenes, and others because of background history plot. Until now (I'm re-watching, and I'm about to re-start book 2) the episode that have these in balance is the 20th.
  • I'm very fond of Mako and Bolin. I'd love to have a brother whose age could be near to mine (I have a sister 4 years younger than me; and a baby brother, 2 years old).

Question 14

Q: How long did it take you to think of the title part of your fanon?

A: That was the first part of the whole story that had came to my mind. Koori's voice saying it, just the same way Katara's on the opening scene of ATLA. It take me about four hours to write its first version in portuguese, to translate it to english, and to record both using sound forge. (The actual part on the fanon is a little changed from the one I have recorded, because... Well back in 2009; the Sky Parliament was called... The Sky Republic...)

Question 15

Q: How many main characters are you going to have?

A: This time I won't hesitate to say "I don't know", well, I have some of them alive in my mind at the moment. A few already have been named, others haven't... But if I can call my main group Team Avatar (this title doesn't fit perfectly since the Avatar doesn't make part of it since the beginning), they will be a group of five permanent members (until I decide to change that).

Question 16

Q: If you wrote another fanon, what do you think it would be about?

A: Well, I was thinking about that a few days ago. I know there are some authors here that have more than one fanon on-going. And I thought of it already. But I'm not gonna do it. It is better to get focused on one and only fanon per time. It would be about one of my favorite characters. Can you guess who? ^_~

Question 17

Q: Have you ever tried writing books outside of AW? If yes, what genres/themes?

A: I've written (not fully) an Harry Potter fanon when I was 15 to 18 years old. But I have already decided that ATFS will be my last fan made written work. I am delayed on my own book projects. I have quite a few young adults stories, based on both worlds of my own, and altered universes of our world. I want to become a writer someday, and well, I hope all that I've been doing isn't a waste of time. As I've said above, I love fantasy, mystery, adventure/action, drama... I'm not a romance/comedy kind of guy... I do like wizards/witches, vampires (actual vampires, not diamond sparkling fluorescent ones), demi-gods... In somewhat those are the themes of books I've been reading all my teenage-hood and my young adulthood... These influences kind of not let go... Harry Potter and Avatar are in my writing veins, at least I hope they are.


Me: Thank you for taking your time to do this interview with me, Ratava!

Ratava: I am the one who should thank you for spending your time with me. I hope you've been enjoying interviewing me (and reading my fanon).

Me: That's all folks! I hope you enjoyed this interview, and I hope you have a fun time writing your fanon, Ratava!

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