Author's Archive, Spotlight No. 11: tinyfierceandsassy
First Published on AO3: January 2, 2014
Written for: The Mindy Project (8 published stories)
1.) What inspired you to write your first story?
“I don’t think there was a definitive moment where I went, “Aha! You know what would be funny? Mindy trying to cook!”. It was probably the culmination of reading a ton of fanfiction in a short amount of time, as well as having to wait for January for the show to come back. My friend had been bugging me and bugging me to watch it since it first aired, but I was a nonbeliever (I know, quelle horreur!). So I finally watched it in December, blazed through the first season and what had been aired of the second, and was just left wanting more. So I thought, why not write it myself? And being Italian, the cooking just naturally followed.”
2.) You’ve already explored an Alternate Universe for Mindy Lahiri and Danny Castellano where they are both college students. Is there another AU concept that you’d like to attempt in the future?
“Oh, I think I would love to do a residency AU. Does that still count as an AU? But I know that would be a behemoth of a story, so I’ve kind of put that off, haha. Maybe a Pretty in Pink AU? Or a Buffy AU. Or Romeo & Juliet AU? So many possibilities! Also some sort of dance competition…if only I could borrow Chris Messina for a day for “inspiration”! But in all honesty, Mindy and Danny work so well in their established universe that I think it would be a challenge to find an alternate one that they fit in the same, perfect way.”
3.) Of all the stories you’ve written, which do you feel the deepest connection with?
“Probably Shulman University. I’m really bad about making outlines, so I just went wherever I felt it was taking me. OMG, that feels like such a pretentious-writer thing to say, but it’s true. It was both easy and hard to write. I’m in college now too, so I could bring those experiences into the story. But I also live a very boring life that lacks the will-they-won’t-they component, so keeping that tension up was a challenge. I just kept thinking, “how can these two screw it up again?” Thinking about how in college you’re supposed to be immature and make mistakes in love, it just felt more natural to have this sort of prolonged story. Like it could really happen to a couple on my own campus.”
4.) Tell us something that we don’t know about one of your stories. Do you have a “fun fact” about the creative process behind any of them?
“Haha, I’m really excited you asked! Shulman University’s premise (where Mindy makes out with Danny to get out of doing a naked run during beer pong) actually happened to one of my best friends. Before I even started to write, I asked her, “is it okay if I use this in a story and people online see it?” Thank God she did, because I really wanted to write it. Can’t say she got an engagement out of it, but at least she can say she was the inspiration for a story!”
5.) Is there a story that you’ve read by another fanfic author that made you say, “Wow! I wish I wrote that”? (Or, is there a story that you just really, really appreciate?)
“Oh wow, yes, for sure! The TMP fandom is so so talented. mindyanddannyfineanddandy Happy Accidents, for one. Classic trope but done in such a nuanced and entertaining way. Yours & helenvanpattersonpatton ‘s Signed, Sealed, Delivered. Is that cheesy, to point out the interviewer’s work? Oh well! Seriously, I can name so many names. Every time I see a new fic posted, I think “ahh that’s a great idea! I wish I’d thought of that!” But they’ve all done such a great job on their own, I can’t even imagine it differently.”
Tinyfierceandsassy’s work is an intelligent mix of romantic, humorous, and dramatic. If you’d like to take a look at some of her fantastic work, Phunky Recommends:
Danny Castellano is My Personal Chef
In her very first story, Mindy must learn how to cook and there’s only person fit to teach her how. Hint: It’s not Morgan.
Little White Lies
An adorable look at the Castellano family’s Thanksgiving tradition.
Five Firsts and Ten Seconds
Five firsts in Mindy and Danny’s evolving relationship (and one non-first). Each moment is individually darling.
Is there a fanfiction author whom you feel deserves a little spotlight (and would be willing to do a short interview via e-mail/messaging)? Are there questions that you’ve always wanted to ask some of your favorite writers? Let me know! You can nominate authors to spotlight and suggest questions in my inbox, ortweet me @Phunky_Brewsterwith the hashtag #FFAuthorsArchive!You can also e-mail me at email@example.com. This is a multi-fandom segment.