Sunday, June 28, 2020



What is your opinion on fanfiction / fanfiction authors? I don't mind, but I've never written a fan fiction, I once tried (to write) a little Farscape but it just wasn't my thing. (Farscape is, but fanfiction is not.) I prefer to work on original stuff. Does that mean fanfiction is bad?

How would you feel if someone wrote fanfiction about your story?

Imagine you're an established author, and someone would write something set in your world, or use your characters, how would you feel? How should you feel?

Personally, I would feel flattered.

Though I've seen some very disturbing stuff, so I can understand why some writers don't like 'variant takes' on their stories. Still, if it's a fan effort, and not a deliberate put-down or abuse or outright plagiarism, I guess most authors would be fine with it.

Is fanfiction 'disrespectful to the creator of the original story'?

Euh... say what?

I think that's bull. The ultimate example is Dungeons and Dragons. Every story set in a D&D universe is, in some aspect, fanfiction. (And yeah, I play D&D, or did play until Covid took over.)

Writing fanfiction must be discouraged!

Why? If it helps someone become a better writer, then let them be. Stories can be quite enjoyable when placed in a familiar world.

Writing can be fun, who cares what it is about?

But... I must say reading fanfiction is a different thing. Although that needs a little elaboration. It's not that reading fanfiction is bad, it's just that it is hard to find the good stuff.

Is there any good fanfiction?

Unfortunately, lots of fanfiction is... well... not very good. Most of it goes boy-x-boy involving the two main male characters of whatever the source, or... well... Euh... that's pretty much it 😪

Great if you like it.

That doesn't mean there isn't great fanfiction out there, but it's buried under tons of crap. Thus far, the best fanfiction I ran into is the Alexandra Quick series, although one could claim that's more original / world sharing than fanfiction. So perhaps it doesn't count.

So, go ahead!

We all have our own tastes,  so don't listen to others. If you enjoy reading or writing fanfiction, then keep doing so!

One little note though: fanfiction is a bit of an acquired taste. Don't push it onto people who don't like it.

Can fanfiction lead to a writing career?

Yeah, it can. Some argue that fan fiction has more exposure, and thus will attract more readers, more attention, etc. and thus might be a great kickstart to becoming an author.

I mean, Fifty Shades of Grey started out as a fanfiction story...

Do you really want to write?

I've added this here, because lots of fan fiction isn't based on a book. People love their anime and TV shows, and love to write about the characters from those shows. Great!

Keep in mind that there is a bit of a difference between writing a book and writing a script. Also, what works on the screen might not work in a book. Be aware of that, and you may (must?) have to adapt to your available medium and format.

Books, manwha, webtoons, light novels, television shows, movies, movie scripts, stage plays, they all differ from 'old fashioned' books, all with their advantages and disadvantages. If you want to emulate a different format or develop for another format perhaps writing a book isn't the best choice in the first place.

Unfortunately, writing a script may be lots of fun, but reading isn't to most people. If you're looking for readers writing a script might be the wrong route.


So, whilst we're on the topic: don't think or claim your favorite TV show / anime series / light novel / movie is the best ever and the perfect example of how to structure your stories... Especially if the original is in a different medium / format. Does the plot and execution of an anime series tell you how to build a plot for your book, and how to write memorable schemes? Probably not. The medium is different and the story mechanics are different.

That doesn't mean there are is no excellent story telling nor plot to be found outside books. Some anime / movies / whatever or not great inspirations might offer great inspiration. But, just as with fan fiction in general: don't push your favorite series as 'the best thing evah' onto other people.

Diversity and respect

You want to ship some characters? Go ahead! Link Hagrid to Dumbledore, I don't care. But please understand that diversity and tolerance are important, but that tastes may differ. Not everyone my be interested in the 372th novel shipping Harry and Draco... Some people may feel discomfort reading a horror novel, or a romance, or a specific kind of romance. Accept that those people might not be able to give your story the attention it deserves, and the feedback you would like. After all, we all have different tastes!

Also note that the original maker / author / performer might not like your interpretation, or to have one of his / her creations to be depicted as part of a char x char relation. Does that make him / her a bigot? Not really... His or her tastes just run different from yours, and that's something to respect too.



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