Tag Archives: Lauren Faust

Signed, Sealed, Delivered

Way back in May, when Lauren Faust stepped down from her work on My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, I set out to collect letters of thanks from bronies around the Internet in a post on this blog and find a way to deliver them to Lauren as a way of showing her how much her work means to us.  I called the project Letters to Lauren, and scores of bronies responded, sending over 140 letters total to be included in the collection.

After a frenzied day of adding letters to the post, I set out to bring them to Lauren’s attention.  I tried a few different methods, none of which panned out, and I began to wonder if I’d started something I wasn’t really prepared to finish.  Then Tek stepped in.  My friend Tekaramity, one of the blogponies at Equestria Daily, told me cryptically a short while ago that he just might have some way of delivering all of the letters I’d collected.  It turns out that he was in the process of conducting an interview with Lauren herself (read it here, it’s amazing), and he told her personally about Letters to Lauren.  I have it on his good authority that Lauren Faust is right now in the process of reading through each one of the letters that you sent me.

Yes, you read that right.  Lauren Faust is reading through Letters to Lauren.

As you may be able to tell, I am absolutely floored.  My sincerest thanks to Tekaramity for proving once again that he is the Element of Generosity and using his incredible opportunity to speak with Lauren to make this dream come true for me and the bronies who sent in their letters, and an equally sincere thanks to all of you bronies who sent in your letters and made this project come alive.  It was an enormous privilege to help coordinate this effort, and I’m so glad that it was such a success.

And, of course, a huge thanks to Lauren Faust.  You’re a great force for good in this world, Lauren, and we all appreciate what you do.

Your faithful mail pony,

Tim N.

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A Quick Update

I can’t give you all the details, mostly because I don’t have all the details, but the situation has changed with Project Letters to Lauren Faust.  I didn’t send Jayson Thiessen an email today, but that’s because it looks like some new, more promising leads are opening up and I don’t want to use up my lifeline just yet.  Please keep praying that God will work in this situation and that I’ll be able to deliver those letters soon.  I’m actually really excited about this right now, especially knowing that the end may be in sight, but we haven’t reached the end just yet.  I’ll keep you posted, and I promise that unless Lauren reads the letters tomorrow, I’ll post something more interesting.  Thanks for your prayers and your patience, friends.  You’re the best.

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A Quick Prayer Request

Thursdays are always obscenely busy for me, so I don’t usually have time to post anything of significance, but tonight I wanted to ask you guys to pray for me.  Two months ago, I launched Letters to Lauren Faust, a project aiming to deliver letters from grateful bronies to Lauren thanking her for her work on MLP:FiM, to a far more expansive response than I was expecting.  Tomorrow morning, I will be emailing Friendship is Magic’s Assistant Director, Jayson Thiessen, to ask for his help in delivering these letters to Ms. Faust, and I would greatly appreciate your prayers that God would make my words effective and bring about success in this endeavor.  This is my last and best chance at a successful delivery of the 145 letters that I’ve collected, so I’m a little nervous, but I know that it’s now or never.  I’ll update you on the situation as soon as I can, and thank you in advance for your prayers.

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And Then It Was Finals Week

I’m writing this blog post while my study partner for the New Testament Survey final makes a McDonald’s run.  When he gets back, hopefully we can complete the four hours of joint studying our professor requires in order for us to work together on the final tomorrow.  While that’s really not as tedious as it sounds, mostly thanks to copious amounts of Swedish Fish Eggs and random fits of distracted ramblings, it is certainly time consuming.  Ah, well, what else could one expect from finals week?

So I was planning on writing a nice Mother’s Day post yesterday, but the Letters to Lauren Faust project sort of exploded and took over my entire Sunday.  While that is undeniably the coolest interruption I’ve ever had the privilege to experience, the busyness of it all put me off my scheduled blogging groove a little, so I might not be able to write a Mother’s Day post to do my Mom justice until finals are out of the way (sorry, Mom).

Speaking of Letters to Lauren Faust, as of now the collection is at 121, which is absolutely astounding, and the submissions have mostly quieted down.  I really need to set aside some time to read them all, there are some incredible stories in there.  A big thanks goes out to all the bronies who submitted their letters, and an extra big thanks to mazeedibeedi and ThreeSix on PonyGAF for sending the post to Equestria Daily, and to Sethisto at Equestria Daily for featuring Letters to Lauren Faust.  Without you this project never would have become what it did.  You guys are fantastic.  As for the progress of the project, I have sent Lauren a note on deviantArt informing her of our endeavor and asking her to stop by and take a look, but she hasn’t been active there since then.  She should get the note next time she logs in, and with any luck she’ll read the letters and send some kind of confirmation that she did so.  Which would be awesome beyond words.

I guess that’s all the news I have for this scatter-brained update post, and Darius will be back with his McFood any minute now, so without further ado this is your friendly neighborhood faithful student Tim Newton signing out and hitting the books.  Or maybe I should just read them.  Yeah, that would make more sense.

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Letters to Lauren Faust

Dear Lauren,

It’s been three months since I first watched an episode of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, but I still remember that day clearly.  A chain reaction started on that unassuming Saturday afternoon, one that has created more laughs, smiles, and fond memories than I ever expected, and it’s all because you fell in love with an idea and dedicated yourself to making it a reality.  Today, as I watched the season finale, I thought back on all of those memories and realized that without you, none of them would have even been possible, and I knew that I had to thank you somehow.  That’s why I wrote this letter: to let you in on a few of the best memories I’ve made thanks to your ponies, and to let you know how grateful I am for your part in making them.

So thank you.  Thank you for essentially introducing me to one of my best friends, Tek, whom I met through the comments section of my first pony-related post way back in February.  Thank you for the smile that I wore as I drew a picture of Pinkie Pie to send to my fifteen-year-old sister, whose cheerful spirit reminds me a lot of everyone’s favorite party pony, and thank you for the even bigger smile that I got when she wrote me back saying “I decided I’m officially Pinkie Pie!  Speaking of ponies, would you draw me a picture of Fluttershy?  Please?”.  Thank you for the chance to watch the show with her and my sixteen-year-old brother, and for all the fun we’ve had quoting it back and forth to each other since.  Thank you for the unexpected fun of watching one of my college friends succumb to the charm of the ponies, and for how it’s given us a great excuse to hang out every Thursday afternoon to watch a few episodes and chat.  Thanks, too, for the great laugh I got when a friend who posted “What’s up with the ponies?” on my Facebook wall in early April posted “I want a pet alligator named Gummy” just a few weeks later.

Perhaps most of all, however, I thank you for giving thousands and thousands of other people all around the world the same kind of lasting memories that you’ve given me.  You’ve really done something wonderful, Lauren, something that’s touched people from every walk of life, and there’s no way that all of us could say a thank you big enough or sincere enough to express our gratitude.  Still, we had to try, so I opened up my email to the bronies of Ponychan, PonyGAF, and Equestria Daily, people who also owe a lot of great memories to you, to send you their own letters of gratitude for all that you have done.  You can find their letters below, letters with stories of love found, hope restored, and lives changed.  I know there are a lot of them and that you’re a very busy woman, but I hope that you’ll take the time to scroll through, read some of these letters, see what your work has meant to all of us, and take pride in what you’ve accomplished.  You deserve it.

Sincerely,

Tim N.

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Ponies for Japan

About a week ago, Lauren Faust, the creator of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, started an auction.  On her deviantArt page, she announced that she would sell three of her original development sketches from the show, one each of Applejack, Pinkie Pie, and Twilight Sparkle, as well as a brand-new sketch of fan favorite Derpy Hooves.  The best part of this auction, however, was the cause.  Faust specified that all proceeds from the sketches would go straight to the Give2Asia relief fund to help disaster victims in Japan.

One week later, the auctions are all closed, and the final result is more than anyone ever expected.  The four bronies who won the sketches paid a grand total of over $15,000.  The most paid for a single sketch was a staggering $6,20o for Twilight Sparkle.  Faust gave the MLP:FiM fan community an opportunity to show their generosity and compassion, and their response was both overwhelming and inspiring.  These people came together and offered freely out of their own excess to help a country ravaged by disaster, and seeing just how much help they were ready and willing to give is incredible.  As Faust herself put it, these bronies embody the Element of Generosity.

Stories like this always warm my heart, but they also challenge me.  I may not have $6,200 to give, but I have far more than many of those struck by the earthquake in Japan.  Have I done my part to help them?  Have I even given a moment’s thought to the plight of those who need what I have?  $15,000 is an impressive amount, and it’s going to do a whole lot of good for Japan, but what about the $5 in Chip the Piggy Bank?  As much as it’s hard to admit, it would do far more good in the hands of Give2Asia buying medicine and supplies than in the hands of the barista at Joe’s paying for a coffee.  Just because we can’t give as much as some doesn’t mean that we can’t give at all because generosity isn’t about the amount that you give, it’s about the amount that you keep for yourself.  We may not all be able to make an overwhelming difference, but we can still make a difference, and that’s what matters.  The question is, how big of a difference could I be making?  And am I making it?

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Friendship is Music

Yesterday was Friday, which means that today is (in my best WheezyWaiter impression) Saturday, Saturday, Pony Saturday!  If you didn’t get that reference, do yourself a favor and swing by WheezyWaiter’s channel to experience such wonders as the alligator pit, Quiet Clone, and, of course, Explosion Wednesdays (which may or may not be a thing).

Now that I’ve fulfilled my daily quota of shameless endorsements, on to the actual post.  This week, the spotlight is on Friendship is Magic’s two staff musicians, songwriter Daniel Ingram and composer William Anderson.  Both of these guys put a great amount of talent and effort into their work, and it shows.  Ingram’s delightful songs, from quick and cheerful ditties to full-blown musical numbers, are so catchy that they’ll latch onto your brain after just one listen, not to mention the lyrics in the two musical-style pieces, and Anderson’s background music blends with (and adds to) the action and atmosphere on screen perfectly every time.  Seriously, some of his stuff sounds like it could be straight from a movie soundtrack.  And while it might seem that only fans of the show would have the opportunity to enjoy this music, that’s not true at all.  There are instrumental and original versions of most of Ingram’s songs and several clips of Anderson’s music without the sounds from the show available on YouTube, and I can almost guarantee that you will like them no matter who you are.  Go on, give it a try!

Here are a few samples of Daniel Ingram’s work:

“Winter Wrap Up (With Voices)”
(This is easily Ingram’s catchiest piece.  I’ve never met a person who’s heard this song and not had it stuck in their head for days afterwards – and I’ve never heard them complain about that fact, either.)

“Winter Wrap Up (Instrumental)”

“Art of the Dress”
(This song has one of my favorite lines of all Daniel Ingram’s tunes: “All we ever want is indecision/ all we really like is what we know.”  It’s not often you hear thoughtful lines like that in a song from a cartoon.)

“Cutie Mark Crusader Theme Instrumental”
(Don’t let the name fool you, this is the most hardcore tune in the show to date – and by hardcore I do mean electric guitars and drums and the like.  Trust me, just listen to it.)

If you liked those, click here to read an interview that my friend Tekaramity conducted with Daniel Ingram.  It’s good stuff.

Also, here are three versions of various Daniel Ingram pieces that fans covered/remixed.  The original music is still Ingram’s work, these guys just added their own twist to it and made a whole new kind of awesome.

“Pinkie Pie’s No Fear Song (Giggle at the Ghostly) Piano Cover”
(Super-mellow, very pretty piano cover)

“Giggle at the Ghostly (Saltlakrit’s 20% Cooler Remix)”
(Super-pumped-up, very perky dance remix)

“Friendship is Magic Piano Medley”
(Super-every-positive-adjective-you-can-think-of, very talented piano medley)

And here’s some music by William Anderson:

“Photo Finish Theme”

“Rarity’s Fashion Show”
(This is one of my favorite Anderson pieces right here.  As Tek put it (in TV Tropes terms), it’s a real Crowning Music of Awesome.)

“The CMC Go Questing”

“Sonic Rainboom”
(This one feels like the score from a movie, the orchestra and rock band mixture is just fantastic)

“Final Encounter (Battle with Nightmare Moon)”
(I’ve saved the best for last.  The music from the climax of the two-part pilot is a perfect example of how William Anderson goes the extra proverbial mile to make the music for this show sound great.  Those iconic notes at 3:04 don’t sound so girlie when played by a full orchestra now, do they?)

Enjoy the musical goodness, and I’ll see you tomorrow with (hopefully) a new Work in Progress video from myself and Dan.

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