If you thought that Erica James’ literary aspirations have only seen the light of day in the form of her ‘Fifty Shades’ trilogy, you are not entirely correct. We say, entirely, because most of us might not have heard the name Snowqueens Icedragon. It was her pseudonym, till she decided to abbreviate her name to E.L. James and write the first instalment of her ‘Fifty Shades....’ trilogy. Under her pseudonym, Snowqueens Icedragon, she wrote another fan fiction, which went on to become the foundation of her most commercially successful literary creation.
Though most of us now know that ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ started as a fan fiction, quite on the lines of Twilight, a love story between a human girl and a vampire boy, written by Stephanie Meyer. The ‘Twilight’ series have also been adapted into films, which again have been commercially viable. But even as we sit and discuss the similarities that might have existed between ‘Twilight’ and ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’, there is another novel by E.L. James which has to be considered when drawing parallels.
Entitled ‘Master of the Universe’ or MotU, this novel bears a stark resemblance to ‘Fifty Shades....’ and hence it can be concluded that it formed a foundation on which the successful high-rise of ‘Fifty Shades...’ was constructed. When we take a close look at both the novels, we will hardly miss the ingenious and watermark left on the pages by the author, E.L. James. Since both MotU and ‘Fifty...’ rely heavily on each other, and have elements which have been borrowed from ‘Twilight’ as well, there are chances, that the faithful readers of all the three novels will be able to draw the necessary comparisons.
To start off with the comparisons ourselves, we can easily say that some characters and the traits they display along with the relationship they share, are the same, or in the least identical in both ‘Master of the Universe’ and FSoG, or ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’. The name Bella Swan will of course ring bells, (thanks to Twilight) and that very same name was also used in MotU, but was thankfully changed to Anastasia Steele in FSoG.
Even if you have not read the novel (too bad, actually), you will know that she is one of the lead characters, ion both the novel and the film, the other lead character being Christian Grey, who was Edward Cullen in both Meyer’s ‘Twilight’ and Snowqueens Icedragon’s ‘Master of the...’. Apart from the major characters and their names and relationships which have been touched upon and changed, the back stories of how the characters met, and other events are also strikingly dissimilar.
Hence, you can’t read Twilight and expect to catch a glimpse of ‘Fifty Shades...’ and ‘Master of the Universe’ and vice-versa. Though there are elements that these three novels share since they follow the fan fiction mode, each has its own unique flavour and charm and you just have to have your own copy to see it for yourself.