In my last article I discussed A Song of Ice and Fire, a series of alleged “books” so bad that I couldn’t even review them directly. I felt I should follow that up with something a bit on the lighter side. For my very first post, I reviewed a so-bad-it’s-good ‘60s cartoon loosely based on a Tolkien masterwork. Now I’d like to bring up the subject of a work of similar hilarity: My Immortal by Tara “XXXbloodyrists666XXX” Gilesbie. And no—I didn’t misspell “wrists”; she did.
My Immortal is a work of fan-fiction set in the world of J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, although the two have very little in common. Despite being deleted from the website on which it was first published, very likely due to its numerous and ineptly-penned sex scenes and the like, My Immortal now has numerous sites devoted to it where one can read the full text or download the .epub file, which I recommend to anyone in need of hysterical laughter.
Da Badd Spelingg
Tara’s omission of the “w” in her pseudonym does little to foreshadow the extent to which she proceeds to butcher the English language, whether by spelling, grammar, or just poor writing. One must actually read My Immortal to truly know its absurdity, but the preface should do nicely in its absence.
AN: Special fangz (get it, coz Im goffik) 2 my gf (ew not in that way) raven, bloodytearz666 4 helpin me wif da story and spelling. U rok! Justin ur da luv of my deprzzing life u rok 2! MCR ROX!
You may, upon reading this, wonder if the above excerpt was written over a texting conversation on Gilesbie’s mobile phone. I sadly cannot enlighten you where this question is concerned—and nor can anyone else for that matter—but know that countless readers have puzzled over the dilemma. For the first few chapters, as Tara mentioned, her friend Raven provided some help with the spelling. Fortunately, it seems that Raven had an only slightly better grasp of English than Tara, because a good portion of the humour comes from trying to decipher the unintelligible sentences.
Chapter 1: In Which We Are Introduced to Enoby Dark’ness Dementia
Tara Raven Way
After the almost illegible preface, we are introduced to the story’s protagonist—complete with a lengthy physical description and allusions to incestuous desires:
Hi my name is Ebony Dark’ness Dementia Raven Way and I have long ebony black hair (that’s how I got my name) with purple streaks and red tips that reaches my mid-back and icy blue eyes like limpid tears and a lot of people tell me I look like Amy Lee (AN: if u don’t know who she is get da hell out of here!). I’m not related to Gerard Way but I wish I was because he’s a major fucking hottie. I’m a vampire but my teeth are straight and white. I have pale white skin. I’m also a witch, and I go to a magic school called Hogwarts in England where I’m in the seventh year (I’m seventeen).
Despite being called “Ebony” the first time she is mentioned, Tara’s protagonist is at least as often called “Enoby” or some other such permutation. It is for this reason that I will refer to her by the latter so as not to confuse her with any other character named “Ebony”—just in case any exist. As with most stories that concern a Mary Sue, the writing becomes embellished only when discussing the appearance of the protagonist or their romantic interests. I say “interests” in the plural because a Mary Sue such as Enoby can have as many romantic partners as she desires at any given time.
The Ultimate Mary Sue
I must admit that My Immortal and My Little Pony: Dusk’s Dawn are the only works of fan-fiction I’ve encountered. Until I read My Immortal, I had never before heard of a “Mary Sue,” but after doing a great deal of research, I have come to the conclusion that the term is indeed defined by the high standards of Enoby. It’s a very complicated topic, and I’ll clarify the finer points in an article devoted to defining a Mary Sue. However, in most cases a Mary Sue is an idealized character that exists primarily to live out their author’s sexual fantasies as is the case with Enoby. The defining factor, however, is that all the other characters adore and obsess over the Mary Sue with little—if any—explanation; the story sees its protagonist as being able to do no wrong regardless of their actions. A normal story’s protagonist may do immoral things, but the story acknowledges their immorality and—so long as the action is not overly evil—the reader can empathize with a rounded and flawed protagonist. A Mary Sue such as Enoby can get away with anything.
Gothic Goffik (in case you couldn’t tell)
Unsurprisingly, Tara’s description of Enoby continues, devolving steadily into a Hot Topic catalogue. The overlong descriptions of clothing is something that will persist throughout her work, often occurring more than once in a single scene.
I’m a goth (in case you couldn’t tell) and I wear mostly black. I love Hot Topic and I buy all my clothes from there. For example today I was wearing a black corset with matching lace around it and a black leather miniskirt, pink fishnets and black combat boots. I was wearing black lipstick, white foundation, black eyeliner and red eye shadow. I was walking outside Hogwarts. It was snowing and raining so there was no sun, which I was very happy about. A lot of preps stared at me. I put up my middle finger at them.
Here we see yet more of the uninspired prose, and those who were unable to translate her use of “goffik” in the preface are enlightened as to what that meant. Enoby is, in fact, a goth, yet various spellings of “goffik” will continue to far outnumber the correct spelling. Aside from the scarcity of punctuation and absence of the Oxford Comma, the paragraph is littered with examples of the passive voice: “I was walking…”; “I was wearing…” There is a correct way to employ passive verbs, but this is certainly not such a case. The passive voice makes things seem distant and less immediate, which is great if a character is just barely aware of something, but misuse and overuse alike can lead to writing like the above. At least she seems to have gotten off her bloody phone to write this bit.
Tara Enoby and Draco
It also becomes swiftly apparent that none of the characters in My Immortal have anything to do with their counterparts from Rowling’s work. For instance, Draco Malfoy—a blood-purist rich boy with a taste for violence and power—is here transformed into Gilesbie’s romantic fantasy, goffik and utterly smitten with her self-insert.
“Hey Ebony!” shouted a voice. I looked up. It was…. Draco Malfoy!
“What’s up Draco?” I asked.
“Nothing.” he said shyly.
But then, I heard my friends call me and I had to go away.
“Stop flaming, preps!”
And that’s where the first chapter ends, believe it or not. Each subsequent chapter begins with an “author’s note” that consists of Tara demanding that all the “preps” stop criticizing her work. A “prep,” by Tara’s definition, seems to just be anyone who isn’t “goffik.” Such people are, from the story’s perspective, worthless and are often killed to great applause from the “goffik” characters, who seem to be mostly comprised of “stanist” (satanist) vampires. Along with “poser goffs” like the senile Albert Dumbledeor, these make up the cliques of Tara’s Hogwarts.
AN: STOP FLAMMING DA STORY PREPZ OK! odderwize fangs 2 da goffik ppl 4 da good reveiws! FANGS AGEN RAVEN! oh yeah, BTW I don’t own dis or da lyrics 4 Good Chralotte.
You’ll probably have noticed by now that many of Tara Gilesbie’s—and Enoby’s—favourite bands feature prominently in her work. It becomes obvious that with very little regard for Rowling’s work, Gilesbie has arbitrarily divided the cast into goffs, preps, and posers, resulting in groups consisting of nonsensical character combinations.
The plot revolves around Enoby’s disturbing vampire-goffik romance with Draco Malfoy. Like Bella Swan from The Twilight Saga, Enoby suffers no repercussions when she indulges in external liaisons with—among others—Harry Potter, Voldemort, and Tom Bombadil. And yes—I did just say Enoby shags Tom Bombadil. If one is familiar with fan-fiction and Mary Sues, then one will likely have expected this; Enoby exists at the centre of a love-triangle between herself, Draco Malfoy, and Harry “Vampire” Potter. To make things yet more unsettling, she is never forced to choose between them, for Draco and Vampire are both bisexual and equally taken with each other, resulting in a shag scene on which I refuse to offer any information at all.
As hinted at by Gilesbie’s pseudonym, many of the characters in the fan-fiction recreationally slit their wrists. Being vampires, they never actually die from it, yet continuity within a single scene seems too much to ask as Draco is briefly assumed dead from that very cause. Indeed, very few characters seem to stay dead even once they’ve been killed; a perfect example is Willow, a character based on Raven who is expelled, murdered by Hermione “B’loody Mary” Smith (a vampire who used to be called “Granger”), and defiled by Loopin—a necrophiliac. In addition, despite supposedly existing in Rowling’s Wizarding World, the primary weapon of choice for Voldemort in his plot to blackmail Enoby into killing Vampire is, in fact, a gun. This firearm motif persists throughout the story, and Enoby’s in particular seems to have unlimited ammunition.
As with the 1966 The Hobbit cartoon, I don’t want to spoil much about My Immortal. This fan-fiction is so wonderfully ludicrous (or “ludacris,” as Tara puts it) that it’s difficult to read a single page of it without laughing. The monotonous descriptions of clothing, for example, go past the point of being boring and become inexplicably entertaining, and the spelling just gets better as it becomes increasingly worse—very often it feels as though no character’s name is spelt the same way twice, so varied are these errors. As stated, this train-wreck has gained enough of a following that it’s not difficult to find on the internet. I happily recommend at least listening to szaleniec1000’s reading of My Immortal—I’ve heard a lot of readings, and his was the best.
As always, if you have any thoughts, I’d love to hear what you have to say. If you’ve already read My Immortal, tell me what you thought of it in the comments. If you haven’t, then go read it; it’s hilarious!