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I'm awesome! You're awesome! WE'RE ALL SO FREAKING AWESOME!!! And on Wednesday we get to slightly quantify that awesome! I can't wait! So, again, remember to update your numbers before I get up on Wednesday!

That said, I wanted to have a conversation about fan fiction, and what it means to each of us, and why we do it (those of us who do it).

I had an hour long text conversation with my father about fan fic yesterday that stemmed from why I won't watch or read Outlander, Easter dinner will be interesting this year. The jist of what I said was that I write fan fic to practice writing, to learn, to get feedback, and to learn more. I also do it because I know Steve and Danny will never kiss on H50, but I didn't want to have THAT conversation with my father via text (again, Easter dinner will be interesting). I look at some of the things that I wrote before I was writing fan fic, and sure old things tend to make me cringe anyway, but I feel that it helps me with plotting, with dialog, with what I like to see and what is well received. Not so much catering to an audience, but seeing how what I say is taken.

So, why do you fan fic? What do you get out of it? What do you put into it? Where do you hope to go with it?


( 24 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 30th, 2015 03:34 pm (UTC)
I collected almost 15 days of images to icon, yesterday, for the 100 in 100... and ended up sitting on the couch, binge watching Supernatural (I'm trying to get caught up from a lack of watching for about three seasons).

My brother understands fanfic and why I write it a little more than my mother... simply because we've had conversations about movies/TV that I'm able to say "and that's what fanfic exists." He doesn't read it, or write it.. but I will randomly get a "There's something for your story!"

My mom will offer the same, but there's just something in her tone that seems sarcastic or mocking or whatever. If she only knew how much stuff she says or does that has made it into fanfic. LOL

Personally, I never knew what fanfic was until long after I'd been writing it.

I started writing because a character would say something that was never mentioned again; or the character was missing and I wanted to know where they were. Generally, I write situations I'd like to have seen filmed, or (in many cases) REfilmed.

Or, in the case of my main fandom... it was a six-hour program, there were a dozen plotholes/loose ends, and little to no backstory. ANYTHING could have happened and, thanks to fanfic, anything CAN.

and my spirit animal can live

I think the majority of fanfic, as you mentioned, is self-gratification for YOUR ship, instead of the one you've been presented. And, it helps me practice -writing-. I'm currently trying to tech myself how to write a sentence that says what it needs to, without all the extra fluff. I'd love to be able to paint a clear picture.. but I'm still having trouble setting the scene.

So.. that's what I want to get out of it. Scene-setting awesomeness. :)

Edited at 2015-03-30 03:36 pm (UTC)
Mar. 30th, 2015 06:16 pm (UTC)
I do get that, and there are so many things that you just don't have enough exposition about and making it up is great!!!

And I do love making up a backstory! YAY YOU!!!

Mar. 30th, 2015 04:54 pm (UTC)
I'm rather amused by the fact you can even talk to your dad about this stuff. My mom would look at me and then call for the men in the white jackets. LOL

But seriously... I'd never even attempted to write fanfic until 2012 when I joined a kink meme for a show I was watching. I had joined mostly for the fanfic to come out of it but then, a prompt took hold and well... I kinda haven't stopped even though the show's been off the air for almost 2 years now. LOL

I do agree with you in that it helps us hone the basics of writing. Since we already have the setting, the characters, back story, etc, we can focus on things like dialogue and plotting or whatever it is that we need to improve on.

What do I want to get out of it? I don't even know. Considering half of what I've written lately has either been angst-ridden or goofy as all get out, I'm guessing the goal is either a good cry or a good laugh. :) I do know that I write it because I got one lousy effing season and that was not enough. So... yeah. There ya go.
Mar. 30th, 2015 06:27 pm (UTC)
I talk to my dad about you guys, and that's how the conversation about fanfic evolved. My mother knew I wrote, but I never discussed it with her and never showed her any of it, while I did show some of it to my dad while I was writing an original fic serial 10 years ago. My sister knows, but I don't think she's every read anything I haven't forced her to.

Mar. 30th, 2015 09:39 pm (UTC)
LOL @ your sister (mine hates to read so I know she'd be the same way), but it's awesome you can even talk to your family about this kind of thing. I can talk to my husband about it, but my mother and siblings? Never.

I can't even tell you how happy I am that I found you guys as well. I have gotten nothing but support and encouragement and friendship out of you all. It makes me much more productive! :D
Mar. 31st, 2015 10:58 pm (UTC)
My sister loves to read, actually reads more voraciously than I do lately. But I think that the things I've said about slashers may have made her a bit afraid. Also, I don't think she'd quite know what to say to me if she thought it sucked. She'd want to be supportive, but she'd want me to learn... Or it could just be that I've never given her much of mine to read as it's not up her alley.

I cannot get over this place. How much it's grown and how GOOD it's grown! :D EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE.

Oh also, I don't know where the conversation went, but you asked me about an e-book site and it's Ravenous Romance.
Apr. 1st, 2015 05:15 pm (UTC)
Well... STOP SCARING YOUR SISTER! :) Ah, yeah, that's always a tough one, isn't it? Even as a beta, I have a hard time pointing out things that don't quite work.

This place is awesome!

Hah - I'd forgotten about that. RR is a wonderful site, so thank you. :)
Apr. 2nd, 2015 05:26 pm (UTC)
IT IS A wonderful place, I just never get around to shopping there much anymore. *sigh*

Apr. 3rd, 2015 08:53 pm (UTC)
I know, right? Now that my younger child has a Kindle of her own, I find myself buying her books and not having money left to buy ME books. But eh, it's a worthy cause, right?

Aw, shucks. We're ALL awesome!
Mar. 30th, 2015 04:56 pm (UTC)
When I started writing fan fic (2011? Late 2010?) it was because I missed LOST so much. I mean, I had seriously uncomfortable withdrawl pains after that show. And it dawned on me there was a huge, unwritten story to be had about what happened to the survivors between 'The End' and their individual ends.

When I started writing that first LOST fic of mine (gen fic, canon compliant, a bit of Jate but not heavily shippy, Timey Wimey twist to it) I didn't even know fan fiction was a heavily active thing. I recalled that it had been in the 70's with all the Trek 'zines but had no idea there were web sites devoted to it until I started doing some searching.

I had a great time writing that story - was enthralled at watching the page views and where they were from. I had people from fifty four different countries reading it at one point and wow was that a rush! To me, that is the continued draw- the interaction. And creating a little world (based on a TV world, of course) that didn't exist before. It's an outlet for creativity and emotion and...yeah, a pacifier to an extent. Kind of thinking it's time to moderate the time spent on it for that reason - find a more happy medium rather than cranking out story after story.

I'd like to get some original fic published- and will keep at that effort this year. But wow, it's a solo pursuit. The lack of instant feedback only delays gratification and we're not that kind of world anymore, are we?

Part of me thinks maybe I'd be better off aiming to do short form travel writing for my professional efforts, and just stick to fan fic (less of it, but some of it) for pleasure. Writing non-fiction is how I've made my way 'til now....maybe that's for a reason. We'll see....

Edited at 2015-03-30 04:58 pm (UTC)
Mar. 31st, 2015 11:06 pm (UTC)
:) You are so right about the delayed gratification. And especially with fanfic. You get spoiled by watching the counters and such, so that something big, arcing, and original feel much more isolated.

We'll get you through this year, see what you can do with your original fic. It will be amazing, although, travel writing would have it's appeal. Definitely have it's appeal. (not for nothing but I bought the dream vaca issue of Nat Geo and OMG, the places you'll go!)
Mar. 30th, 2015 05:34 pm (UTC)
I started writing, because I didn't like the way Harry Potter was going. I was very anti Harry/Ginny. I saw them as siblings, nothing more than. (An opinion I felt validated when even JKR confessed that it had not been a good plan.) I also wanted to give Harry some happier moments. I felt that the kid deserved some happiness.

From there I moved to Naruto, and the Buffy, then Star Trek (where I learned that crossovers could work, when done correctly), and then I bounced everywhere.

I write to please myself. To push myself. To push my readers. To me, it's fun to see the different levels of acceptance in each fandom. For instance: H 5-0 fans, they cannot see any instance where Danny or Steve would breastfeed a child. In SPN and Teen Wolf the fans can not only see it, but see a valid reason for it. Even if it does make the reader squirm for liking it.

I like seeing is I can rip someone heart out when they are reading crack. If I can make them hot under the collar because of cookies.

In other words, I write because I am mischievous and use it to mess with heads. If someone enjoys it, yay, if not, well... no skin off my back.

For the record: My mother is a fan of my stories, my dad rolls his eyes when he sees me working on a story (though I have finally gotten him to overcome his homophobia by writing slash! He no longer sees it as an abomination), my hubby has started liking yaoi anime (yaoi is Male/Male), my eldest daughter protects me from fan girls/boys at conventions, my youngest daughter doesn't care. Just so long as her mom is happy and not hurt.
Mar. 30th, 2015 05:42 pm (UTC)
Oh as for hopes, I have accomplished it. My kids are open and accepting of homosexuality. My family understands that I will not tolerate bigotry.
Apr. 2nd, 2015 10:42 pm (UTC)
I adore that your whole family is in the loop! That is excellent! And you are very very good at evoking a sincere reactions from what is normally innocuous situations! YAY YOU!!!!


And yay for your impetus to start fanfic! ;)
(Deleted comment)
Apr. 3rd, 2015 07:33 pm (UTC)
This is all very excellent!!! I LOVE IT!!!

Sure you've made me feel insanely old, but then... ;) I LOVE THAT YOU LOVE YOUR HOBBY!!!
Mar. 30th, 2015 07:35 pm (UTC)
I know I started with Smallville because I didn't like how the show was treating my favorite characters, Chloe and Lex, so the simplest fix was to write the scenes/stories that I wanted to see happen.

Since then I moved onto H50 and Sherlock fandom but now it's more of an exercise to see if I can get my drabble to make sense and to only use 100 words:)

It's also about the community and sharing ideas and squeeing over favorite characters and just having fun with fandom friends :)

Edited at 2015-03-30 07:35 pm (UTC)
Apr. 3rd, 2015 07:35 pm (UTC)
I love that! I've seen that icon, that fanfic is the fix for what canon gets wrong.

And I love that you are challenging yourself!
Mar. 30th, 2015 08:30 pm (UTC)
Fanfic is like playing make believe, but using words and paper instead of parading dollies around.

I've been reading it since I discovered the X-files fanfic in the mid 90's.
Apr. 3rd, 2015 07:36 pm (UTC)
And now I've got inception paperdolls in my head!

I love being a sucker for makebelieve!
Apr. 3rd, 2015 08:29 pm (UTC)
I say run with that idea. ;)
Mar. 30th, 2015 10:48 pm (UTC)
First, I think it's so cool that you can talk to your dad about fanfic. So many people (I find) feel that they have to hide it or are embarrassed or feel judged. My whole family and friends (and most coworkers) know I write it. :)

As for why -- hmm. Well I've been doing it forever, before I knew it was fanfic. My first ever story was written when I was about 9, on a manual typewriter, pecking away with one finger. For the Trixie Belden books, if anyone remembers those!

I firmly believe that everyone needs a creative outlet. I literally feel grouchy if I don't write for a while. And I write fanfic in particular for a couple of reasons. It tends to be my meta for the show -- so instead of writing a long opinion-piece on why I think Character A acted
the way he did, I write a fic about it. And of course it's a way to fill in the blanks for moments the show doesn't give me, or to make those subtextual longing looks grow into something more (that the creators never intended.)

I used to think that I needed the kudos/likes/comments, but as I've moved into smaller and smaller fandoms, I find that I really... don't. The creative rush of the writing seems to be enough (though of course when people like what I write, that's gleeful icing and sometimes involves a happy dance.)

I'd love to write something original, but I doubt I ever will.

So... why won't you read or watch Outlander?
Apr. 3rd, 2015 07:53 pm (UTC)
While I do talk to my family about fanfic, I don’t get overly descriptive about how much m/m porn I write. Everyone at work knows, though! And all of my friends as well.

I adore that you started it on a typewriter!!! ADORE! And I love the idea of using the fic to fill in the canon blanks.

I know what you mean about kudos/likes/comments. You feel accomplished when you’ve finished, and the others are kind of an icing on top of the cookie. However a cookie is still pretty darn good by itself!

Outlander… *sigh* The author is not in favor of fan fiction written about her characters. It is her prerogative, which she is free to exercise and has politely asked that people refrain from using her character in fan fiction. I do get that these are her original characters and that she lives with them in her head and that they are beloved to her. But I believe that once you put something out in the world to be interpreted and mulled over and allow it to live in readers’ heads, you cannot ask someone who may be creative not to unleash their imaginings. Sure you can take action when someone turns a profit from what is your intellectual property, but asking people to read and love your characters has the fallout of being stuck when they want to fill in canon blanks or want a character treated differently or … I respect her, she is entitled to her opinion, but I’m not comfortable supporting an author who isn’t comfortable with fanfiction happening with her characters.

And sometimes I can’t shut up! :)
Mar. 30th, 2015 10:52 pm (UTC)
I discovered fanfic via Stargate SG1 and early explorations of the internets back in the days of using dial up (meaning using the web was an absolute treat considering you wanted to tie up the phone line for however long the connection would allow). It was my first introduction into the world of fandom as a whole, connecting with people from all walks of life with a common goal, that being show (and the time Stargate).

Basically gobbled up all the fic, decided to try my hand and that as they say was that.

I fanfic because it's a connection to the mass of community for the shows I love. It's my little contribution to the fandom.

But I mainly do it because I enjoy it. I really do - it makes me happy, it helps me relax, even helps me vent. I can channel whatever I'm feeling or going through into my writing, which makes angst a blast at times lol

And it puts me in touch with wonderful communities of people, such as this place. No main fandom, no dramarama, no fan wars or pettiness - just like minded individuals all very encouraging and peppy and gorgeous. A lot of people have negative attitudes to social networking, but I see this place as part of my online social network. People on the other side of the world to me, who'd I'd never have 'met' or crossed paths with if it weren't for fanfiction and that's something that is kinda awesome :D I love this comm :D :D :D

Edited at 2015-03-30 10:53 pm (UTC)
Mar. 31st, 2015 02:12 am (UTC)
It's so great you can talk to your dad about this! In general I hesitate telling anyone any more than "I write" xD

Like some of the others who seem to be my generation, fanfic was my natural progression. I've always been a fannish brat. I used to play pretend a lot with my best friend at the time. As Scully and Mulder we investigated UFOs that had crashed, we fought as Xena and Hercules, and created an indefinite number of Sailor Senshi. (Interestingly enough, Xena and Hercules were the first fandoms in which I shipped m/m and f/f pairings.)

What I consider my first fanfic was a bandom crossover with the Pet Semetary movies. It was the sequel to something my friend wrote. It took me three days to write and amounted to 12 Wordpad pages.

The first time I came in contact with other people's fanfic was on fanfiction.net, back when they still allowed RPF. (Or am I making this up?)

*sigh* LJ ate my comment after this. Recapturing my points.

Basically, I fanfic because I need to write, although I don't like it too much. Fanfic feels easy because it seems like everything is allowed and within the huge quality gap between "Wowzers, why isn't this person demanding money for this?" and "Wtf did I just read?" I dare post my stuff because I can tell myself there'll be a hundred persons whose writing is worse than mine and who care less about it.

I write to improve, because I believe in Bradbury's "With quantity comes quality." I write - and I would never have thought this possible - to get the ideas out. I write to please myself and others. I write because I'm miserable without it.

I've wanted to quit so often for a variety of reason, now mainly because I should concentrate on RL and do not know this thing called time management. Writing is Very time consuming for me. But I know I need it, so I'll have to figure out how to handle Life and writing.

ETA: Sometimes I wish someone would pay me to write fanfic, because I certainly don't dare attempt origfic or even things like creative nonfiction.

Edited at 2015-03-31 04:25 pm (UTC)
( 24 comments — Leave a comment )


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