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I guess the original intent of the link was to describe an AuthorInsert? or SelfInsert?.

Those interested in research into the Mary Sue phenomenon, as well as a reference to the story from which it took its name, should look at [The Official Mary Sue Society Avatar Appreciation Site].

Can I ask where you all first HEARD Marysue?  Because (the page that linked to) this page is the first time I've ever heard it.
In a discussion about good fanfiction for... erm... something. I forget what. It was pre-wiki, though.

The all too common practice of writing a story purely so that you can have yourself in the middle of the action.

The worlds worst FanFiction is always of this type, and a heck of a lot of bad WebComics are too.  But there is really no reason for it to be bad in and of itself.

After all, every character you create is, in some way, a part of yourself.  And RolePlaying is all about putting yourself into a story or world.

I beg to differ. RolePlaying is most certainly not 'all about putting yourself into a story'. Roleplaying is about playing a role; that may well be 'you' in a different situation to your RealLife, but if so (and if that is what it is 'all about') then that merely betrays a lack of imagination.
I plead MethodActing? here.  But what I actually meant was 'you (the player) taking part in (the story)' - (your character) may or may not (and probably should not) have the same character as you (the player).  As in, the existence of roleplaying shows that there is a widespread desire to participate in stories.
As far as RolePlaying goes, deliberately putting 'yourself' or a reasonable facsimile thereof into weird situations is done, but it is generally regarded as an 'alternative' - that is to say, not the normal style of RolePlaying. It is not generally regarded as particularly repugnant (unlike MarySueisms) because you do not have script immunity, and you do not have everything falling into place in the fashion of the offending fanfics. While this can happen, the problem is mostly independent of the type of character played (although people will argue that characters with, well, character tend not to occur in the same game) and has a slew of nasty names all of it's own.
Is a MarySue who doesn't have ScriptImmunity still a MarySue?
mmmm... I'd say not.  That'd just be a chosen use of character.  Though I guess it'd still probably be cheesy.

Why is it called 'MarySue-ism'? - SunKitten
It's just a way I've heard it expressed - I suspect it was originally just a corruption of the grammar, but who knows. Context might be: "And X is prone to MarySue-isms, such as Y in Z and Q in R." where X is an author, Y and Q are characters, and Z and R are FanFics?. Anyone care to examine the etymology?
The term "Mary Sue" came from a character in the fanfic: ["A TREKKIE'S TALE" By Paula Smith] --DR

Tangential to the RolePlaying discussion, while not all MarySues kill a fanfic, most do - and so the term has taken on the meaning of not just an AuthorInsert?, but one which was terminal for the fanfic in question. As such, the term isn't really appropriate for MegaTokyo (see below) or RolePlaying (see above) - or even for the mythical good fanfics with author inserts. (Or, more likely, ones with characters added who share some characteristics with the author - but do not die of this. I believe such to exist).

I guess it's been a natural trend forever.  But, as has been mentioned, a lot of bad FanFiction suffers from it.

In a lot of ways, it can be a good thing to write a self insert.  Get your gratification over with, enjoy yourself.  But please, for the love of All that is holy - don't inflict it upon others.  In much the same way that RolePlaying stories are of the "You had to be there" nature, SelfInsert? for the sake of SelfInsert? is enjoyable only to the author.

That isn't true either: many people can be interested in such fiction, as (provided the main character is well written) any reader can identify with them, and there is a sizable number of people who really would like to identify with clever, witty, successful characters who save the day. Or even romantically-painted losers (how else do you explain the success of [Megatokyo]?).
I don't really think MegaTokyo is quite that kind of 'self gratification' insert.  It uses an appropriate set of characters, who just happen to be the authors and friends.  Consider the horror of the megatokyo cast appearing in penny-arcade (though vice-versa works well) as an example of inappropriate 'don't show it to anyone else'
An 'appropriate set of characters' for what? The plot is an almighty mess, but two vague strands can be discerned: 'Largo' gets to basically live the gamer's dream of being in a computer game all the time, but with no actual sense of danger or suggestion that he might get seriously hurt (as opposed to 'comic' pratfalls). 'Piro', on the other hand, gets to be a loser with no friends and no success with the opposite sex but! this isn't because of any fault of his other than shyness, and he's depicted as hugely talented (every character who comes across his work says 'wow'), sensitive, deep, and generally wonderful (apart from that shyness). Which ties into the other geek-dream of 'if only they'd notice me for who I really am they'd all love me' (cf 'Buffy, the Vampire Slayer', with its beautiful-people social outcast identification-figures). It's wish-fulfilment fantasy -- exactly the same as the original 'Mary-Sue' stories where the author-identification character (who as a character may or may not be 'the author' themselves, inserted into the fiction, but will probably the author as they wish they were) gets to save the ship from certain doom before taming Kirk.
No, they're both playing in computer games, but Piro is playing a dating game (and doesn't realise it).
{sigh} Yes yes, you don't like MegaTokyo, we get it.  I can see how you are calling MegaTokyo wish fulfilment - but it IS its own story and its own world that it throws, um, its own characters into.  So I'd say there were two differences that stopped it being MarySue.  First that it isn't a stolen world - and fulfilling wishes in your own world is much easier (if you want to) than MT makes it.  Secondly, you are seeing actual character development - and a lot focus on the non-main characters.  (Your typical MarySue has to appear in EVERY scene, or she throws a tantrum)  Three.  The three main reasons... (fade out to comfy chair)
I'd also take issue with the 'everyone loves his art' bit, IIRC only one person in the strip has seen it - they liked it, but added loads of 'this needs to be improved' comments.  But that's an entirely separate and useless comment.  I'd also point out that RL Piro is attached (to the person who shows up as his shoulder angel) and thus am unsure of the validity of the wish fulfilment in that direction.  And also that Largo isn't a writer for the comic any more, so I'm not sure how getting to be in a computer-game counts as fulfilment for him.  (WishFulfilmentByProxy? perhaps?)  Agreed that the plot is an almighty mess - though it's one of the things I like about it :)
(PeterTaylor) I think you're thinking of his co-worker (I can never remember the names of the MT characters other than Piro and Largo) - what about the girl who asked him to teach her to draw? (And what happened to that, anyway, after the first lesson which he forgot about?)
(TheTangentThatWouldNotDie) Thought that was the same person.  (Train station girl)
(PeterTaylor) No. The girl who asked him to draw is a schoolgirl. The train station girl is a voice actor, and rooms with the co-worker.
AlexChurchill: Oh, I'm so glad it wasn't just me who got Yuki and Kimiko confused.  I finally realised around strip 230 that they were different people, despite hundreds of pretty clear indications up to then ^^;;  As far as I've seen, tho, Kimiko (the voice actress) still hasn't seen his artwork, so Yuki is still the the only one to have done so.
(PeterTaylor) I'm confident that Kimiko's housemate, who is also Piro's co-worker, has seen his notebook, although I can't remember whether that's before or after Yuki sees it. (And FWIW I also took a long time to distinguish all the girls).

As I said, however, there isn't always anything wrong with using your own self in a story.  Just make sure that you're doing it for all the normal reasons for putting ANY character into a story.  The character is needed for the plot, appropriate to the situation, gets a sensible amount of ScreenTime? and so on.

Truly, there is nothing worse than a SelfInsert? being used as a DeusExMachina and then stealing the princess from the original main character.  Well, except for all of the above happenning in a Lemon-Slash-Sonic-The-Hedghog-fic-Mst3k with no less than four author inserts...  (No, I'm not going to link it.  Never EVER go googling for 'worst fanfic ever')

By the way, has anyone else come across the term GaryStu??  I thought it was quite clever, but at 1.30 in the morning I think lichen is quite clever.  --FR


Of course, if this was *supposed* to be about ALittleHouseOnThePrairie? then ignore the above.

What if you do a self-insert into a ALittleHouseOnThePrairie? fanfic? - Kazuhiko

Then, you are truly damned.

And you have two MarySues?



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