|Eldy (née Eldorion)|
|Other names||Ellie J. Keener|
|Birth||8 August 1994 |
My real name is Ellie, but my primary online handle is Eldy. During the decade or so that I spent actively involved in online Tolkien fandom, I used the name Eldorion, though most people shortened it to Eldo. I've been an avid Tolkien fan for most of my life and I'm a former forum admin and webmaster as well as an independent Tolkien scholar. I turn to TG as a reference and to jog my memory, making use of well-cited articles, and sporadically make edits here when I feel I have something to contribute.
I indulge in the long fan tradition of picking an Elvish name and, after switching between "surnames" for several years, settled on Eldorion Nolondil, though on most sites I only used Eldorion. This is not a misspelling of Aragorn and Arwen's son, but was originally the name of a character I briefly played on the LOTR Plaza. It means "son of the star-land" (Númenor) but due to the ambiguity of the element el- can also be interpreted as "son of the elf-land". The second part is a genuine Tolkienian name: Nolondil, youngest son of Vardamir Nólimon and ancestor of Hallatan of Hyarastorni. I acquired the nickname Eldo independently on most sites where I used this name, but a couple people on the Plaza used Eldy instead. When I came out as trans several years later I switched exclusively to that version.
I first read The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings in early 2004, when I was nine years old, and adored them. I already had an interest in fantasy but Tolkien fired my imagination like nothing else (not even Harry Potter) and his works have been a part of my life ever since. I read The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales in the following several years. I did not watch the entire film trilogy until I was 12. Around 2008 I got more serious about studying Tolkien and began to work my way through The History of Middle-earth and The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien. I ventured onto Tolkien forums starting at the end of that year because I was looking to discuss those works and test myself. My early participation in Tolkien fandom was dominated by Lore debates which proved a valuable educational experience in both Tolkien and rhetoric.
 The Movies
I have always enjoyed the Peter Jackson film adaptation of The Lord of the Rings, but I have also always been critical of a number of changes made to the story during the adaptational process. Movie discussions quickly became the second area of the fandom that I explored. I have never objected to the mere existence of changes from the source material, but feel that many of the changes (and the motivations for some of them) displayed a lack of interest in fully engaging with the text. However, I have always distinguished between my opinion of the films as adaptations and my opinion of them purely as cinema. I have become more aware of certain flaws in the trilogy as I've learned more about cinema, but The Fellowship of the Ring in particular remains one of my favorite movies.
 Forum governance
I came into the fandom about a year after The Hobbit films had been officially announced, though still several years before any of them were actually released, and it was thanks to The Hobbit that I got my turn at running a forum. I was the moderator of the Movies forum at the LOTR Plaza for roughly a year, from October 2010 until August 2011, during the period when it was the most active English language Tolkien forum on the web. I was also the founder and owner/administrator of Forumshire: The Hobbit Movie Forum from February 2011 to January 2016, after having started the site for members of the The-Hobbit-Movie.com's forum, which had just been shut down (the whole site is now offline). Forumshire grew to be the second-largest English language Tolkien forum, after TheOneRing.net, by 2013, and remained so for the remainder of my tenure as an administrator.
 Tolkien scholarship
I was fortunate in that my formative fannish experiences came largely in discussions with both self-taught Loremasters and published Tolkien scholars, primarily on the LOTR Plaza and TheOneRing.net's forums. I was able to make something of a name for myself and after stepping down from running forums I returned more to this early passion. I have a sporadically-updated tumblr blog called Nolondil where I've posted both new essays and some attempts at reworking old ideas that I'd previously posted on various forums.