Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Emma Finn

Dear readers of this blog,

As many of you may have heard, Emma Finn, one of the most prolific and talented authors of transformation stories, has passed away. I've been an avid fan of her writing for over a decade and, while we've never met in person, we've exchanged e-mails over the years and she'd given me some invaluable writing advice. I think that I owe her at least this short post in memoriam. I am not very good at writing obituaries or at giving speeches so please forgive me if I ramble just a bit.

People dissapear from the internet all the time. They don't answer e-mails. They stop posting on facebook or twitter. They stop updating their blogs. It's normal. Real life likes to interfer when you least expect it. It is rarely that we assume that someone who's no longer online must have died. We like to think that internet makes us eternal. At least we often behave as if it does. Sadly, with Emma there is no room for ambiguity. Ever since she announced a few months back to her readers that she had cancer I hoped against hope that she would win this battle. The fact that she continued posting - albeit not as regularly as before, but still far more often that a lot of other bloggers, myself included - only reinforced my perception that she was doing fine or, at least, better. I hate to say that I was wrong.

I first read her stories on Fictionmania around 2003 or 2004 and was struck by her unique blend of dark transformation. Her original Cleaner is still one of my all-time favorite transformation stories and a true lady-to-maid classic. Emma began work on a major expansion of that story, turning it into a novel-length study of self-destructing obsession and fetishism like no other. Sadly, only the first part (out of three) was completed. The last post she made in her blog - about a month before she died - was chapter 6 of the second part of that magnificent saga. Unfortunately, it will never be finished.

What made Emma's stories different from a lot of transformation fiction one can find online is their unparalleled quality. Simply put, this is very good literature with great dialogue, interesting plots and realistic reactions and situations. This is what makes her writing so powerful. I can only hope to one day begin to approach the same level of intensity and depth that the best of her stories posessed. I do not know what Emma's "real life" profession was, but she did treat her books as her most important occupation, sticking to a very strict publishing schedule for an extended period of time. As a reader I would never forget this dedication to the craft.

Rest in peace, dear Emma.


  1. Hi Camille,

    I read your words and found myself nodding along with what you wrote. Emma showed such bravery and posted such amazingly positive tweets that I was fooled. I guess there was a big dollop of selfishness in there because she was such a great writer. She had wonderful powers of description and such well rounded characters. Cleaner is superb, and part of that is the way the 'villain' of the piece, Melissa, has her own insecurities and fears rather than the 2D evil mastermind who has no doubts and easily crushes her simple minded target. Fire in an engrossing plot that would veer suddenly and deliciously - and yet always believably - and her work was very strong indeed.

    I knew Emma even less than you I suspect, some cross chat from comments I'd post the limits of our interaction. I hope that the one thing we, her readers, gave her was an appreciation that she was a bloody good author who gave us all lots of pleasure. There was always a little thrill when a new post was revealed! She said herself she had doubted her abilities and I just hope, and I do think this was the case, that she came to see she was talented and well received.

    Much loved, much missed, RIP Emma


  2. Cleaner was the story that got me interested in the whole transformation genre. It is testament to Emma and her writing that she had so many readers not just here but across many forums and groups. I cannot do justice to the words already written by the previous posts save to say that we have lost a star here one earth but heaven has gained a true angel i guess in away a transformation of sorts.

    Godbless Emma rest in eternal peace.

    1. This is how I feel as well. I also hope that she somehow left behind a trove of finished and semi-finished stories that will find their way to us, readers and fans.

  3. Like many who follow Emma's blog I too hoped against hope that she had beaten her cancer but sadly not. As individuals and as a community of avid reader feel the loss but it's nothing compared with the dreadful loss experienced by her family. I hope they can take some comfort in knowing that she'll be missed by so many of us. Chris

    1. Indeed. I do wonder, however, to what extent her family was aware of her writing and her blog. Or was it her secret life? Not everyone is open-minded and not all her stories one can proudly show to one's mother - quality of writing and creativity of plot notwithstanding.

    2. It's true, sometimes the story you are proudest of is one which you can't show to your mother -- or your daughter.
      I write as "Arcadia Berger"and also under my real name, but I think I am my best self as a writer when I am Arcadia Berger, and I do wish I could show Arcadia's stories to my mother, or to my (now-grown) children, or even to my writers' group.
      Emma is gone now. I hope she got the best out of the time she had, and we can at least get the best out of reading her stories.

  4. I think that of her many classics, "Class" and "Turning Around" are the best. She will be missed.

  5. I only wrote the story I am because of Emma... She encouraged me to write it and, well acted as a mentor. On a good note, I think I may have found a new one now. But Emma will always have a special place in my heart for all the discussions we had about experiences in this genre, the games we would play etc. A very sad and deep loss. - BigBird