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This Month The OutsideTheLines Home Page is proud to bring you our first installment of our Author's Spotlight.

A Question and Answer forum to help readers get to know the writers behind the bylines.


Ladies and fictives, if you have never had the pleasure of reading her two current on-going stories, "The Sun Will Shine Again" and the Marpiya Wakankdi na Kimimi series, it is our pleasure to introduce;

Raven Adams
Interview conducted on August 19, 1998
By David D. Amaya

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Introduction.
In Greek mythology Apollo considered the raven a prophet.
Irish legend said the raven was the goddess.
British monarch William I, the Conqueror, had a raven on his royal battle flag for good luck.

Our first spotlight focuses on our Raven of North Charleston, South Carolina, USA.

OTL first caught a glimpse of this talented young writer, who has been writing fan fiction for almost a year now, at the very birth of the OTL mailing list.

I remember like it was yesterday, this Outsider flooding the list with the reasons that Abyss' Bunny Slippers could take out Maggot's slugs in a tag-team match, to see who got to eat all the bounce spam from the old Untold-L list.

Now credited with the first off-topic discussion to go WAY out of hand, we also got to read her work. Work that although was very original, received unwarranted flames, enough so that the Outsiders formed the now infamous "Butt-Kicking Squad" to protect this talent from those that are quick of tongue, yet sloth of brain.

And unless you have bad taste in fiction you will know about Raven's trip into the Subreality Cafe to convince one of her most popular fictives to become a popular series.

Recently OutsideTheLines caught up with Raven who granted us the honor of an interview for our readers.

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The Interview.

OutsideTheLines: Raven, thank you for taking the time to sit with us this afternoon. Well the first thing on my mind is that ... well I'm going to go out on a limb here, and assume that Raven is not your given name at birth. How did you come up with the nom de plume of "Raven"?

Raven Adams: In the 5th grade, I was really picked on badly, so I came up with a poem that sounded like a witch's spell. I recited it to the guy picking on me, and told him he'd get a rash. Over the weekend he fell in poison ivy, and everyone thought I did it! A friend started calling me "Morticia" (from "The Addams Family" TV show) and then "Raven."

My real name is Jessica Lee Adams, and Rave seems to fit right in there well.

OTL: How would you describe your writing background?

RA: Fan fiction? Well, I'm not sure really... I guess it started when I saw the movie Fox made about Generation-X. I didn't even know X-Men was a comic at the time, only a cartoon.

I started looking around, and lo and behold, there was fan-fiction for it!

I first read Lori (McDonald)'s stuff, and fell in love with Gambit it's all her fault I tell you!, but even before then I had stories starting up in my head.

OTL: Were you a writer when you were younger? That is, did you enjoy writing before you started to get involved in Fan Fic??

RA: I've always love to write, even though I never really knew it. I always loved journals in grammar school, and for the teacher to give a topic to write about. I never did well, because of my spelling, but in 6th grade I had a wonderful teacher who looked beyond that, and helped me out.

OTL: What or who were/are big influences on you and your writing? Who gave you the push you needed?

RA: Mr. Townson, my english/reading teacher in 6th grade. He read a poem I wrote that I tossed in the trash. He got mad at me, and pulled me over after class, and sat me down to talk to him. I told him that the poem was crap, and the next week, he proved me wrong by putting it in the school paper.

I started writing that very bad Star Trek story, and while everyone told me it was horrible, he told me he loved it. That was when I decided I wanted to become a writer, because that was the first time anyone ever believe in me.

He stood by me through that bad story, even laughing when I had a Feringi peeing in Data's head! <<LOL>>

OTL: What was the first piece of writing that made you think "Yep, this is something I like to do!"?

RA: Back to that Star Trek thing again. Oh, I loved that story, I still have it, all 100 pages, hand-written in the smallest handwriting I could do on both sides.

Mr. T. let me go to the computer lab a lot, and I thought it was the coolest thing when I got on the computer and made it even better! I work better with keyboards then pencils and paper.

But really, what made me say "This is it, this is great!" was a story I started about a wolf family that had been exposed to radiation, and when a cub was kill by a hunter, they went on a rampage... or they would have if I hadn't had to give it to a teacher who tore it up and tossed in the trash.

I never re-wrote that story. Although it sticks in my mind, I doubt I ever will, but I think about it now, and I realize, that was a turning point, as soon as I saw those pieces falling into the trash, I knew I would do anything I could to write more stories, no matter what...

That sounds dumb, I know, but it's the way I feel.

OTL: About your current fiction stories "The Sun Will Shine Again", which you started in February of this year, and the Marpiya Wakankdi na Kimimi series, that began with the story "The Gift That Keeps On Giving." What was your inspiration for those stories?

RA: Wow, that's a hard question. Lizzie, from Sun, was the first character I ever thought of for X-Men. She started out with a twin brother and sister, being the middle child. She was... complicated, being the daughter of all the X-Men... it was really silly. I even gave the first story over to Lori who told me, and I quote, "you need to find a spell checker somewhere." <<grins>> Lizzie because of Logan, being Wolvie's kid, but Lizzie Le Beau sounded better.

As for where she came from? Your guess is as good as mine, I have no idea, she was just there one day.

Kevin, (from the Marpiya Wakankdi na Kimimi series) first came to mind when I decided to write a Christmas story.

I was in the middle of "Like Father, Like Daughter" and no, not going into a re-write, when I first wrote about Kevin. He was such a strong character, just waiting to get free. I figured, 'I'd write this story, hit on it that he was sick,and the next Christmas, have him get healed.' But I got a letter, asking if I was ever going to write a sequel, and I couldn't get it out of my mind, and so, "The Gift that Keeps On Giving" came out, and the rest followed because over 50 people told me they wanted more.

Kev and Liz both are a combination of people I know, and Liz, as a person... I wish I were the person I fashioned.

Kev was a dear friend of mine who died way too soon. He use to put rocks under his Christmas tree, and I do that now, for reasons you'd have to do it to understand. I feel, that in making Kev like my friend, that my friend is looking over my shoulder and smiling at me.

OTL: You mention that "people wanted more" of Kevin, In your SC story "But I Don't WANT To Be A Series..." you touch upon the decision to write "Marpiya Wakankdi na Kimimi", which you have said is Sioux for "Mysteries of Heaven is Joy." Was the decision to create this series a hard one to make??

RA: Lizzie and the CMS (Covert Mutant Spies) came first. I had, and still have, more stories about them in my head then I do about Kev. But, I thought about it, and it made wonderful since to combined the series, instead of having two series where Gambit was a father, have one, and split it off.

I was also afraid that I wouldn't be able to do much with Kevin after "The Gift That Keeps On Giving", and, although I have many stories in the middle of being written, I can't seem to write them fast enough to get them out, wanting to spend time completing "Sun."

It was also a hard decision, because I didn't think I could write a young boy very well, I mean, I've never been one, and I try my hardest to write what I know... but then again, I've never been a mutant spy, who was kidnaped by Sinister, and infused with mutant powers either!

OTL: Your internet home page "Raven & Cait's Fan Fic World" which you host with Cait MacAnliss, had recently gone thorough some major changes and revamping. How did the page get it's start, and what can other fan fiction fans expect to in the months to follow?

RA: Well, this I blame on Darqstar for have such a wonderful page. Hey! I have to blame it on someone! Her little page on how to do HTML started me on wanting to know more about it, so I set up shop on Angelfire.

I had a nice little page there, with just my junk on it, stealing other pages with fake e-mail addresses, <<grins>> then, Angelfire wouldn't let me upload my pages anymore, which made me very mad. So I found Simplenet, offering all the space I wanted for only $10.00 a month, how could I refuse?

I shortly after signing up shop there, I found out, I couldn't put up much stuff without help, and Cait decided to help me, and I gave her half the page.

The reason that it's an archive is pretty much Shera Crawler 007's fault, for making me put up her stuff. <<grins>>

Well, I'm hoping for an X-Babies page, and I'm working on it as much as I can, making a scrapbook of each ish of the comic, and a Mutant X page, because after reading just one, I've falling in love with the thing.

E-Postcards with X-Men on them should be out in the next two months, and a Ragin' Cajun page were I'll archive all the stories and art the people on my Ragin' Cajun list send out.

OTL: While keeping all those things that you wish to post for the readers in mind. I noticed that in your new rules page... Well, as you say you "found the perfect song for this page." (That Mederith Brooks one. We're not going to repeat the title, but suffice to say it spells 'girl' with a B), because you have said, Quote, we know there are people out there who say "Well these rules just don't apply to me, I'll do what I want to."

Do you get discouraged that all the hard work you and Cait put into your page has been the victim of hate mail so much you had to place "a penalty" for those who fame your Guidelines?

RA: Well, I wouldn't say discouraged really, more to the fact, that I'm angry enough to want to tare the whole thing down!

It's really not a whole lot of flames about the page, mostly about me, and I don't believe Cait has had any of it sent to her she's lucky. But, while I was completing the page, I got five e-mails from different people asking me to put up their stories. Two; one of which I haven't put up yet, she'll be on the RC page when it goes up, have been very nice about it. One even telling me that I had forgotten to do the HTML on his story, and that it wasn't a problem, that he just thought I should know.

The other three on the other hand, decided I should stop working on everything else, and put up their stories right then and there. Two, when I told them I would not, were fine with that, the other thought it would be fun to call me names. I cussed him back, and tore his story apart piece by piece, telling him what was wrong with it everywhere, although, it was a pretty good story, and I regret doing it, I haven't heard from him since.

Since the page has been up, I haven't had one bad e-mail about it, I even got one from someone saying it was the "best site in the world!!"... I don't know about that but I like it!

OTL: Kewl. Okay. now, without answering with any of your own stories, what are some of your favorite fan fics??

RA: Shera Crawler 007's "Trio of Trouble," anything Lori and Darqstar write. And... Wow, there are so many out there, that I don't know what else! I don't get that much time to read any more... um, lets see... well, I like "First Mutant," I can't remember who wrote it, but I like "You Did WHAT In A Cave??," and "Sinister Unmasked" it's just too funny not to like!

OTL: Thank you Raven, remind me to flood the name of that oh-so-talented writer you forgot into your in-box.

Well, Now comes our speed round, the dreaded 20 questions, ready, set.....

20. Who are some of your favorite super heroes & villains?

RA:Heroes: Wolverine, Iceman, Gambit

Villains: believe it or not, Sinister, and Sabertooth.

19. If you could have the power of ANY super being, who would you be?

RA:Archangel. Although he isn't one of my favorite characters, I'd love to be able to fly. You know the dream, where your up high and you fall? Everyone has them, but for me, just before I hit ground, I always swop up, flying through the air. Sounds silly I know, but it's a wonderful dream.

18. Seen any good movies lately?

RA:Yes! Yesterday I saw "Saving Private Ryan." If you can hold out from going to the bathroom for three hours, don't have a weak stomach, and knew at least a little something about WWII then you should see it, it's a wonderful movie, and not because it's believable, but because it's Real with a capital "R"! I've seen two great war movies that were perfect, "Full Metal Jacket" is the first, and this is the second.

I've also seen "Ever After: A Cinderella Story" recently and I enjoyed that too.

17. How about your favorite books?

RA: Wow, there are way too many to list!

I'm a reading freak, if I've got a really good book in my hands I can read it in one day, and I mean good stuff, 300 and over pages, I don't like anything under that, too short.

I love anything by Dean Koontz, he is my favorite writer, although I like Stephen King, and John Saul. I like Piers Anthony's Magic of Xanth Series, anything by Terry Brooks. I like Greek and Roman mythology, so my library is filled with books by Homer, and about God's and Goddess's and such.

16. Do you have any hobbies besides Fan Fic writing?

RA: Well, reading. I'm working on writings a novel. I also like Origami, (Japanese paper folding), working on puzzles, games, anything that will make me think, clear the cobwebs out of my brain.

I like music, love to sing, although I don't do it in public. Crafts, cross stitching, making home made books, I love making indian loom jewelry, I've gotten pretty good at it.

15. What TV shows to you watch?

RA: <<blinks>> TV? What's TV? <<LOL>> Yeah, I have time to watch TV! Usually, while I'm doing my homework, from 10:00pm-11:00pm. I watch "Wings" on USA, then switch it over to VH1 for an hour, then watch "Northern Exposure", and "Law and Order" on A&E. Every once and a while, I will come down to watch a new episode of "Law and Order", and I'll watch "X-Files" if I'm really board.

14. If you were stranded in the Savage Land, what is the one thing that you would take with you?

RA: Only one? Bobby! Yeah, I'd take Iceman with me! <<LOL>> Lets see... the only thing I know about the Savage Land if from the cartoons, so let me think ... the book "My Side of the Mountain."

13. What 3 CDs?

RA: Okay, I'd take the "Armageddon" Soundtrack, Aerosmith latest CD "Nine Lives," and my "Best of the Doors" CD.

12. Do you have a secret talent?

RA: Um... Not that I know of. I think my writing is about the only thing I can do, even though that's not all that great either.

11. What was the biggest thrill in your life?

RA: The biggest thrill of my life, was when I found out that because of me, a really wonderful writer started writing. That was the best thing I've ever heard, and it was a wonderful feeling.

10. What's your favorite Radio Station?

RA: "Alice 100.5" WALC-FM Charleston.. They play everything but hard rock, rap and country.

9. Favorite band?

RA:It's a toss up between Aerosmith and the Doors.

8. Favorite Actor?

RA:Sean Connery

7. Actress?

RA: I can see her face, but can't think of her name. She was in "Pretty Woman."... Oh, what is her name? Oh YA! Julia Roberts.

6. What is your favorite food?

RA:Anything with so much cyan pepper it it'll make you cry just to smell it... In other words, Bayou food, good ol' fashioned Cajun cooking.

5. Fast Food?

RA: Only if I don't want to think about how many times it's been ...

  1. Killed.
  2. Dropped on the floor.
  3. Had a fly eating on it.
  4. How many cats and dogs it took to make the food...

...In other wards, keep that crap away from me! I can cook, and I'd rather eat something eatable.

4. What was your favorite subject in school?

RA: English, and therefore, creative writing.

3. What is your favorite non-super powered cartoon character?

RA:Daria from MTV.

2. What is the best advice you ever received?

RA: "Don't let them get you down, you have twice as much up here, then they ever will. And if you start to believe what they say about you, well, then I guess you're not quite as smart as I thought you were."-- Mr Townson, my 6th grade English teacher.

1. "If I could have done it differently, I would have ..."

RA: .... Told them all goodbye.

OTL: Thank you, Raven, for your time, but before we let you go just one more question.

In 2098, when your great-grandchildren ask their computer for a one-sentence summary of the writings of Raven Adams, what will the computer say?

RA: Slightly entertaining stories from an imaginative mind about things not of the real world.

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E-mail
Raven Adams

Current Stories By the Featured Author:
"CMS (Covert Mutant Spys)"
"The Sun Will Shine Again"
"You Just Might Get It"
"He Calls Himself A Gaffe"
"Nightmares"
"Marpiya Wakankdi na Kimimi"
"A Very Special Gift"
"The Gift That Keeps On Giving"
"Home?"
"Regret"
"What Little Boys Are Made Of"
"Father's Day"
Subreality Cafe: "But I Don't WANT To Be A Series..."

The author's other stories;
"Bad Fan-Fiction: (An X-Men Story I Think)"
"Guardian Angels and The Keys Of Music"
"I'm Cold" (A responce to Alara's challenge of Death)
"More Bad Fan-Fiction (or Just Who The Heck Is Worf?)"
writen By Raven Adams and Shera Crawler 007

Visit Raven and Cait's Fan-Fic World

Raven that is,
Raven that was,
Raven that always will be....
Raven, bring us luck.
-- from the Koyukon

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©David D. Amaya
DavidAmaya@Hotmail.com
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