The Pitch (01-02)
The Rules (03-18)
The Sale (19-20)
HOW TO WRITE A TYPICAL ÜBER
Not just Queen of the Amazons, Gabrielle was also known as
the Queen of the Pitch
(Sins of the Past)
 Do you like watching Xena: Warrior Princess? Do you sit at your computer, spending hours and hours reading about characters named Janice and Mel or Annie and Mattie? Have you ever wished you could write a steamy love story involving two women who happen to be reincarnations, descendants, or completely-unrelated-yet-bear-a-striking-resemblance to your favorite pre-Mycenaean heroes?
 Of course you have! Now, with this handy-dandy guide to über, you too can be one of the hundreds and hundreds of Xena über-fiction bards out there, earning millions in imaginary monopoly money today!
 First off, you will need some angst. Any kind of angst will do: political, social, mental, or sexual angst. You get bonus points if you have all four.
 Are you dissatisfied with something? Do you have a problem with Republicans? Fine! Was someone a complete -ssh-l- to you and you want to get them back? Great! Are you a horny b-st-rd with a real good imagination? Oh boy, is über-fiction the thing for you!
 Next, you need to watch an episode of Xena: Warrior Princess. If you do not, you run the risk of writing a story about your gray haired 100-year-old grandpa and trying to pass it off as über...not cool. You also need to know who the main characters of the show are. They go by the names of Xena and Gabrielle.
 This brings us to the next step. A good (or even mediocre) bard is very clear about what these two women look like. Make sure it is two women because let's face it, how many Xena übers have you read about an über-Virgil/über-Eve romance? We are talking about a typical über and those revolve around some hot girl-on-girl action.
 What luck! These sweet young 'thangs' come prepackaged, just waiting for you to put them into action! Physically speaking, über-Xena must be: tall, dark-haired, blue-eyed, muscular (or just very athletic), have great breasts, and a really nice -ss. Uber-Gabrielle is: short (petite), blond (or a redhead), green-eyed, curvaceous and a somewhat ravishing beauty herself. I have seen über-X and über-G exchange eye color and occasionally height but do not, I repeat, DO NOT try to convince the reader that the one with the black hair is über-G and vice versa. Anyway, the important thing is that these women are DEAD SEXY.
 Next comes the fun part for the aspiring über bard: personality. These women are not *somewhat* intelligent with a sorta personality. They have it all. Make them as perfect as you possibly can. Über-characters are usually phenomenally intelligent--somewhere in the ballpark of genius-level. This is especially true for über-X. Über-G can be a little dimmer, but adorably so. Adorable is the keyword here. You cannot have an über-G that is a pain in the -ss (and such a lovely -ss, too! oh yeah!). Being a pain is über-X's job. She is the stoic, cold, emotionally detached, frighteningly intelligent pitbull you do not want reviewing your taxes. She can have a sense of humor, but take care not to show it too often, too early in the story, or you will tarnish her ice-queen image. The job of über-G is to "break though" those defensive walls and... complete her, so to speak. Über-G is also rather chatty.
 Now that you have made the characters as perfect as they can be, you can throw them into your story. We are talking plot. I would suggest starting out with a nice is-she-gay-and-into-me-or-is-she-just-friendly storyline. Believe me, this plot can carry the story for days. You may include subplots, such as saving the world or finding some priceless treasure but the main drive of the story is sexual tension, which you must take care to build up. (This is also where the angst comes in.)
 When it comes to writing style, the thing that distinguishes über-fiction from every other genre of fan fiction out there concerns the Big Three: GRATUITOUS DETAIL, INNER DIALOGUES, and GRATIFICATION. Don't know what to write? Then write everything! I mean everything. For example, consider the task of preparing dinner. To write a good über story, you must be concerned with the tiniest detail. Do not write something like this:"She decided honey-glazed chicken would be best. After an hour and a half, with mouth-watering scents wafting tantalizingly from the kitchen, she called [insert significant other's name here] down to dinner, with an anxious smile on her face."
 Oh no! This is much too concise for über! Instead, write:"'What should I cook?' she asked herself. 'Lamb? No, too complicated. Spaghetti? I don't have any tomato sauce. Pizza? That would be too simple.' She furrowed her amazingly cute eyebrows deep in thought and suddenly brightened. 'I know!' she thought triumphantly. 'Honey-glazed chicken.'"
Lamb? Did someone say...lamb?
 Then continue to explain, in as much detail as humanly possible, the exact process of creating this delectable dish. Include positive references to the character's unsurpassed ability and expertise in said activity. I would make her a natural-born talent, at the very least. While she is cooking, have her analyze herself, her feelings toward the significant other, the direction in which their relationship is going (Is there a relationship?), whether things are going too fast, how significant other compares with past lovers, etc. Have her talk her own ear off. This can take pages and pages, all before the poor S.O. (significant other) gets a chance to eat. In über, the more pages you eat up the better your story will be. A typical über is at least 3 times as long as a commercial paperback.
 Also, make sure that once the significant other finally does get a chance to partake of the feast, she is surprised by her significant one's culinary abilities (or whatever abilities the significant one displays). Have significant other voice her surprise and --this is important-- have the significant one blush, charmingly, at the compliment. Now you have created an opportunity to have significant other further compliment significant one's attractiveness, causing more blood to rush to her charmingly attractive face. And so on. You get the idea.
 If you have trouble coming up with special abilities for your über characters, you may wish to choose some, any or all of these:
- Character has an excellent singing voice
- Character can speak eight different languages fluently, including deciphering ancient Greek texts
- Character is able to carry on comfortably with both company directors and kids from the 'hood
- Character was once a gold, silver or bronze medallist in some sport
- Character won Nobel Prize for [insert life-changing discovery]
- Character is a celebrity
- Character has excellent artistic abilities
- Character gets along exceedingly well with children
- Character is exceedingly rich (bonus points for a rags-to-riches story)
- Character is a breathtaking dancer
- Character is a master of some or all martial arts
- Character is proficient with computers (both hardware and software)
- Character is great with her hands (this excludes bedroom prowess, which is a given)
- Character has a green thumb
- Character has an unbelievable metabolism (bonus points if she has other character think, "where does she put it all?")
- Character is a skilled equestrian
- Character is a modern-day Annie Oakley
- Character is a double agent, CIA, FBI, or military. Think La Femme Nikita.
- Character is a champion sailor
- Character is a culinary witch (metaphorically speaking)
- Character has infallible taste in music, clothes, etc.
- Character was once/still is the leading expert on [insert topic]
- Character has innumerable hidden talents, all of which are natural or learned as a child growing up in a hostile environment (bonus points if you are able to convince the reader that the character was definitely *not* skilled in said area beforehand)
- Character can read the minds of animals
- Character rules the world (or is, at the very least, bloody powerful)
 Remember, your übers are already remarkably intelligent, insightful, witty, great in the sack and attractive enough to turn the heads of both men and women. However, you must supply them with "extra ammo."
 In terms of character flaws, there are only a few (very few) that are acceptable:
- Über-G is short
- Über-X is dense
- Über-X or über-G has a temper
- Über-X or über-G has not gotten laid in a while
- Über-X or über G has a physical disability (but this is either overcome, or it was because character engaged in some Herculean, noble act)
- Über-X or über-G is a slut (but still *quite* a tiger between the sheets)
- Über-X or über-G has a painful past
- Über-G is "too nice for her own good"
- Über-X is a b-tch (but this is only because she is a "go-getter" and remember, she hasn't gotten laid in a while)
 One more thing to remember when writing your über-fiction is that no other character must be allowed to take any of the shine away from the main characters. You do not care about supporting characters in three-dimensions. Do not develop these characters in anyway that suggests they have an interesting back-story of their own. They exist merely to further the plot in terms of your über-X and G (bonus points if you can tell your story without having your characters interact with anyone in the outside world).
 Now that you have your characters, plot, writing style, über do's and don'ts, you may choose to add the finishing touch. Yes, the icing on the cake: the song lyric. To be effective, the song must be within the story, not as a chapter heading, prologue, epilogue, or something like that. Bonus points if you get one of the übers (usually über-X, because typically she has the excellent singing voice) to sing it. She may be embarrassed to sing it but hey, that is part of her charm! You may not simply allude to, or include only segments of the song. You must include the entire song, beginning to end. If the refrain is repeated, well, that is what cut and paste is for. This is a completely optional but it is a *very* effective technique to use in your über masterpiece.
Janice and Mel started this whole UBER mess
(The Xena Scrolls)
 So, that is pretty much it. Easy, huh? If you follow these rules you should have a shining example of typical über-Xena fan fiction and although you probably won't get published, at least you will have purged yourself of your hottest erotic fantasy somewhere in there.
 So, good luck, break a leg but whatever you do, remember, put in a lot of sappy moments and love scenes. Most importantly, stick with the Big Three: gratuitous detail, monologues, and lots and lots of gratification!
Invidere is the genius behind the moderately successful yet barely noticeable website, Adventures in the Xenaverse, at http://xenaverse.sphosting.com/. Her major influences regarding this work include the executive transvestite Eddie Izzard, the brilliant Marshall Mathers and the homegrown John Wayne Gacy. Remnants of the latter's success may still be found in her tapwater.
Favorite episode: WHEN FATES COLLIDE, plus all the episodes that include a Xena or Gabrielle death scene.
Favorite line: Priestess Leah to Gabrielle: Leah: "Well, the chaste life's not so bad. Once you get used to it. You simply have to follow the Hestian rules. Rule 1-- know thyself." Gabrielle: "Believe me. If I have to go the rest of my life without companionship, knowing myself won't be a problem." WARRIOR...PRIESTESS...TRAMP
First episode seen: SINS OF THE PAST
Least favorite episode: SEND IN THE CLONES