Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Fear Mythos

Image by betterthanstrawberry

Holy schedule slip batman.

Hey. I’m still alive. And still posting. Hooray!

Now, I’m sure none of you know, but today is a very special day. No, not Valentine’s Day. I have no interest in humanity’s strange obsession with reproduction, except for the side effect it has of making every grocery store put their chocolate on sale. Today, you see, is the anniversary of the Fear Mythos.

“But Omega, I thought this blog was about the Slender Man Mythos, not this strange and different Fear Mythos!” Well, settle down. I’m getting to that.

The Fear Mythos is an offshoot setting of the Slender Man Mythos: while the Slenderverse has the Slender Man as the Big Bad of the entire setting, the Fear Mythos portrays him as just one of a whole collection of eldritch abominations called Fears. As both settings feature Slendy, there’s been some crossover between the two, to the point where some theorize that they’re the same setting, and Slendy just happens to be the most active Fear (explaining why blogs about him outnumber blogs about every other Fear.) There are some inconsistencies, but we can blame all of that on dimensional bleeding and move on.

The two Mythoses (shut up it’s a word now) also have several differences beyond in-universe setting, chiefly stylistic ones. Unlike the Slender Man Mythos, the Fear Mythos was a planned setting: a group got together and organized what the setting would be, rather than several individuals all offering their own interpretation as happened in the Slenderverse. This meant less of the chaotic, rapid genre building which the original Slender Man Mythos had, but did give the Fearverse the advantage of not having quite as much early installment weirdness. In addition, stories in the Fear Mythos tend to be more self-contained; crossovers have happened on occasion, as well as brief nods towards other stories, but nothing to the degree that happens in the Slenderverse.

Probably the best way to describe what the Fear Mythos is would to just post a list of who all the Fears are, but TVTropes already has that covered. So in order for this post to have some real content, I went ahead and interviewed CuteWithoutThe (Of course he totally looks like that. He told me so himself, and why would he lie. Also, he would like all the ladies in the audience to know that yes, he is single.), the man who started the Fear Mythos.

Omega: Alrighty then. Let's start with an obvious question. What made you want to create the Fear Mythos?

Cute Without The E: Well, to be honest, it was a mixture of certain things. The most obvious factor was just a certain boredom of the average slender blog. I felt...just not content with how things were being done with the Slender man. Another thing was just the need for escapism in that point in my life. I wanted to create something that reflected how the world felt to me at that point in my life.

Omega: So you decided the best response to this was through adding several additional eldritch monsters to the setting?

Cute Without The E: It was more of the fact that The Slender Man didn't really reflect what I was afraid of. Yes, he's scary, but he didn't keep me up at night. I wanted to convey different feelings. At first, The Fear Mythos wasn't exactly about Fear, but all the feelings one would go through when confronted with eldritch beasts. Slender Man is great and all, but I wanted more reactions to basic things. If that makes any sense, ha.
So I added what I thought best reflected those feelings, at the time.

Omega: Makes sense to me. How did you actually get the project started? I know there was a TVtropes thread, and I've heard that others were working on similar projects which they decided to bring into the new setting, but I haven't heard a detailed account of the origin yet.

Cute Without The E: Well, it's a bit hazy for me right now, but it all started on my birthday exactly a year ago (2/14/11). That day, I was just realizing how much closer to death I was. With that, Death was on my mind almost every day. Adding to this, I was suffering through multiple other depressing subjects, such as abuse and basic social anxiety. I wanted to concquer those feelings, but couldn't in my real life....so I started using the Slender Man mythos as something to escape to. I once thought to myself, "What if The Slender Man wasn't the only thing out there? What if he represented something?" With that, I started designing creatures. I tried to design my feelings, and the first design I came up with was The Dying Man; the Fear of Death. I decided that I'd call him an "Elemental", and I thought that perhaps Slender Man was an elemental too. With other designs, I decided to post them in TV Tropes and try to get a project of some kind started around them. The thread was called "A New Mythos" (at the time, it is now renamed The Fear Mythos). Other people were extremely interested, and from there, we ended up adding multiple creatures. Over time, it evolved into the current incarnation you see today.
The first Fears were The Cold Boy, The Archangel, The Dying Man, The Wooden Girl, The Convocation, and The Manufactured Newborn, I believe.
EAT came up soon after that

Omega: The Manufactured Newborn predates EAT? Did not know that.

Cute Without The E: Yerp. The second post in the thread was Alliterator complimenting on his name.

Omega: Hm. Well, the Mythos has evolved in a lot of ways since its original conception; which changes about it have surprised you the most?

Cute Without The E: Hmmm. Tough one! I believe I'd have to say how big it's gotten. I mean, I never expected to actually land an interview with Mr. Sir. Awesomega! Seriously, people just seem so perplexed by it, and many are saying that they prefer it over the Slender Man mythos.

Omega: That leads into my next question: Were you expecting to get so many people from the Slender Man Mythos involved in this?

Cute Without The E: No, actually. I thought, at first, that people would just like to stick to the basics, you know? I thought that many would be resistant to change. I thought we'd be a bit separated, socially and creatively.

Omega: Aaand instead you got droves defecting over.

Cute Without The E: Hey, what can I say? We got cookies. And by cookies, I mean awesome.

Omega: Onto the Mythos itself, which Fear would you consider your favorite/the one which you're most frightened of?

Cute Without The E: I am extremely partial to The Dying Man...when I look at The Dying Man, I am reminded of earlier parts of my last year, where my biggest fear was my actual day to day life. Depression's nevera fun thing to go through, and The Dying Man is basically that, personified. I wouldn't say I'm exactly afraid of him though. Ever since the early days, I've been a bit numbed to fearing these eldritch beasts. I mean, I've been writing for them alot, so I guess it's a bit expected. The Dying Man is also my favorite because without him, there wouldn't even by a Fear Mythos. So I owe him so much.
My favorite Fear that I have not created would be The Cold Boy; I like creepy poems, and rain and snow and Winter...what can I say?

Omega: Alright. Next question: Why did you make the decision to have Slender Man be included in the Fear Mythos, rather than creating an entirely different setting?

Cute Without The E: Well, at first, I basically wanted to have the cake and eat it too. Or something...not sure if that saying applies here. I wanted to write for him, but not be limited to only having him, I guess I could say. And, in the early days of the Mythos, I liked contrasting him with The Dying Man...I've forgotten why I originally did that, I think it had something to do with the general mood that surrounds those characters. Also, I foresaw that many writers would probably like to have him in the Mythos too.

Omega: Do you have any predictions for what you think the future of the Fear Mythos might look like?

Cute Without The E: Millions of Fears, if people aren't strict about what they let in. >___> Ha, no seriously though, I believe that if we keep going at the rate we're going, we might overtake The Slender Man Mythos. It might seem a bit arrogant to say that, and might even seem a bit more arrogant of me to say that I actually WANT that to happen, but that's what I think will happen. The Slender Man Mythos is great, and many of the blogs are amazing, but I believe that there is so much more potential in The Fear Mythos. We have an amazing group of writers now, we have amazing fans, and I just think that it's going to get better from here on out.

Omega: One last question: Which Fearblog is your favorite?
(Hint: The answer is Mephi)

Cute Without The E: Darn. You just had to ask that question, didn't you? Uhhh. While Mephi is in my top five, I am sorry to say that it is not my favorite.
(still loveya)

Okay, ignoring Mephi, what is your favorite Fearblog?

Cute Without The E: It would have to be between three of Alliterator's blogs; Brighter than a Spoon, Snowball in Hell, or And When The Skies Opened.
He's an amazing writer, an amazing friend, and an amazing coworker, by the way.
(and you are too!)

Omega: Thank ye!
That should be enough for this post.

Cute Without The E: waiiiit
do I get like a
dedication post, like a shoutout post, haha?
(joking, haha)
I would like to thank all my fellow Fearbloggers though, (including you).
Thank you!

Omega: Yer welcome. And thank you for coming up with the Mythos!

Cute Without The E: All in a day's work, friend

Useful Links
Fear Mythos TVTropes Page: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/TheFearMythos
Fear Mythos Forums: http://theonlythingtofear.b1.jcink.com/index.php?
Fear Mythos Wiki: http://thefearmythos.wikia.com/wiki/The_Fear_Mythos_Wiki

P.S. This has nothing to do with the interview, but my ego demands I post this.

Cute Without The E: Loved Smiting the Gods
Looooved it
Best blog ever

Omega: Damn straight it was.

Cute Without The E: if you had asked best Slenderblog instead of fearblog, I would have said that
was that a collab project?

Omega: Yes, it was a collab project.
Each character was written by a different author.
This is going into the interview by the way.

Cute Without The E: damn