Outlander Fandom 12 Step Program (It’s Not What You Think)

I didna write the following—“Jennifer McDonald” did. It’s verra clever and has been making the rounds on Facebook. I’m sharing it with permission from “Shelley Pilette.”

This is not a 12 step to recovery. I’m sorry to say that there is no turning back from the fandom. You read the books, fell in love, and now you are hooked. There is only one thing left to do…Embrace it.

Here is a list of twelve self-affirming steps. When it gets to be too much, then repeat this mantra: “I am not alone,” for you truly aren’t. Just look around. Any one of your girlfriends will be there to nod in agreement and support your fan-girl tendencies.

Step One: Honesty.

Let’s be honest. You read Outlander and fell in love with James Alexander Malcolm Mackenzie Fraser. Yes you did. Don’t deny it. It’s okay. Remember you are not alone. As you kept reading the books you fantasized. It’s okay we all did. It’s all about honesty here. Then Starz decided to give you a face and name for your Jamie. Now you honestly can’t get enough. It’s obsessing, but it’s okay. Honesty , remember? You honestly aren’t alone.

Step Two: Hope.

For years many who came before you hoped that these books would be recognized for the brilliant piece of literature that they are. They hoped that one day the stories would turn into a reality. In a sense they have. Now we hope that we are not disappointed. We wake up daily with hope that another image or another tidbit will be available. Maintain your hope. It will see you through even in the darkest of days.

Step Three: Faith.

We have faith in Diana Gabaldon as an author. We know she will give the reader what they want. Now transfer that faith to the screenwriters, producers, and actors. Have faith that all will be done and our beloved Outlander will be as beautiful on screen as it is in words.

Step Four: Courage.

Have courage to speak out. Speak your love of Outlander. Say it loud and proud for all to hear. Think of Claire and her courage. As women we have that within all of us. A little bit of Claire Randall Fraser is within us.

Step Five: Integrity.

Pray for the screenwriters and producers to maintain the integrity of the story. Never say a mean word about any fellow Outlander. Maintain your integrity even when you want to contradict or argue a point. Do it with integrity. For all have fallen in love and passion sometimes rules the heart. Maintain your integrity, even when you have “Flat Jamie” and you want to re-enact scenes from the novels. Remember he is a proud Scotsman and you are a lady (mhmph).

Step Six: Willingness.

We must be willing to share. There is only one Jamie and millions of fans. We will all be willing to share images, share articles, and share Flat Jamie (when he is created).

Step Seven: Humility.

We will present ourselves with humility. Some of us are new to the Outlander fandom while others have been dedicated loyalists since its inception over 20 years ago. It does not matter. Once you have had your “Come to Jamie” moment then time doesn’t matter. One cannot measure the depth of another’s love and loyalty; although I give Shelly Pilette all the credit for being the first person I ever met that truly sold this book to others. She does it with such humility that we should all aspire to do the same.

Step Eight: Self-discipline.

Who are you kidding? You have no self-discipline or else you wouldn’t need this intervention. There is no self-discipline when a certain Scottish Ginger is in the picture. If you can maintain some semblance of self-discipline then you truly should be sainted. We will crown you St. Claire of the Order of JAMMF.

Step Nine: Love for others.

Yes, love all members of the Outlander fandom. They love what you love so there must be an ounce of symbiosis amongst us all. Love for Jamie, Love for Claire, Love for Ian, Love for Fergus, Love for all the characters that we cherish. And above all Love for Diana Gabaldon who had that story in her mind that she put on paper to share with world. God bless her.

Step Ten: Perseverance.

Yes, June seems such a long way away, but never fear. If you keep the faith and maintain the path, your prize will be waiting for you. Persevere.

Step Eleven: Spiritual Awareness.

Repeat after me “I believe in Jamie Fraser and Claire Randall Fraser. I believe in Diana Gabaldon. I believe that the story transcends all others and leaves me with all these Feels.”

Step Twelve: Service.

We will serve in the pinning, face booking and tweeting of all things Outlander. We will serve our fellow man or woman in equipping them with what they need to be involved in the fandom.

Now Raise you right hand and repeat after me: “I (state your name) am an active follower of the Outlander fandom. Although some may look at me as if I have lost my mind, I will stand by my devotion to all things Outlander. Jamie Fraser, although not real (but close enough through Sam) has my undying love. I will embrace the fandom and accept all who wish to enter. I am not alone, I am normal, and I embrace it.” ~ Jennifer McDonald (1/11/14)

I Love Ron Moore for ‘Faithfully’ Adapting Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander to a Cable TV Series…

“Jamie Fraser” by Captivated2 @ deviantart.com (http://captivated2.deviantart.com/#/d56lung)

Think I’m putting the cart before the horse?

After all, “Essential Entertainment” toyed with Outlander fans for years; EE optioned the books for a movie or tv series back in 2008.  They worked with “Randall Wallace” (who wrote the movie “Braveheart”), and “Ann Peacock” (screenwriter for ‘The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe’ 2005 ) who actually  wrote a screenplay for a feature film.

We waited, and waited, and EE did nothing.

Part of me was hoping it was taking so long because they were deciding to do a cable tv series vs. a feature film, but I had doubts as to whether any project would be completed in my lifetime, or ever.  (Granted, there is a camp of Outlander fans who would just as soon not see the books translated to film, believing no actor could ever do ‘James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser’ justice.  And while I’m the first to admit that Jamie is a complex character with many, many layers of emotion, I believe it can be done.)

Plus it was so  frustrating to see a cable series like HBO’s ‘Game of Thrones’ which I ADORE (based on “George R. R. Martin’s”  ‘A Song of Ice & Fire’ books) have so much success, knowing with every fiber of my being that Outlander could achieve that same level of success and more, if only EE  would DO something!  In the end, they did nothing, ‘Essentially’ depriving the world of Jamie & Claire and there was no help for it.  UNTIL that is, Ron Moore took an interest in it…

It was the ‘squeal’ heard round the world:

Diana Gabaldon posted on facebook July 17th, 2012:

“WELL, ALRIGHTY, THEN…
Yes! It _is_ true; while final contracts aren’t yet signed, we do have a deal with Sony Pictures for development of a cable-TV (as in HBO, Netflix, Starz, Showtime, whatever…that kind of thing) series.”

And when it was announced on July 17th, 2012 that Ron Moore closed a deal for the rights to Outlander and would be pitching it  to cable networks the following week, I was EXCITED!   I mean REALLY excited, ESPECIALLY when he tweeted this:

“Big fan of  Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander books for many years, excited for the opportunity to do a FAITHFUL interpretation!”  

Big fan?  Faithful interpretation?  Tell me more!

“Ronald D. Moore” is best known for his Emmy nominated work on ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation’ (a show close to my heart- I wanted Jean-Luc Picard to be my father, had a crush on “Number One” William Riker & wanted to BE the empath-counselor Deanna Troi) & most recently ‘Battle Star Galactica,’ where he did get an Emmy in 2008 while serving as Executive Producer (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0601822/bio)

Star Trek: The Next Generation?  Battlestar Galactica?  EMMY?  I mean, really- could this get any better?  You bet your kilt it could!  Diana Gabaldon said THIS later that week on the Compuserve forum:

“Actually, Ron and his chief production assistant came out and spent a weekend (not an hour, not a day <g>) with me last month, discussing the books, the characters, various approaches, structural principles–i.e., where it might be best to break the content of a book for a season, an episode, etc.–the background from which I wrote the books, asked if I had any out-takes or background material written for any of the minor characters that might be useful, etc., etc. He’d read everything, including THE EXILE. <g>.”

Well I’m sold.  Am I putting the cart before the horse?  Maybe, but I don’t think so;  Ron is backing up his words with action- that shows integrity, and Outlander deserves no less. I have complete faith in him.  He’s obviously committed to making this happen and has proven to be MORE than qualified to handle the task of adapting our beloved Outlander books to a cable tv series.
And Ron, if you’re reading this, THANK YOU.  I know that you’ll do the best you can and I can’t WAIT to see your handiwork.  ♥

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