Do you write fanfiction?

Today, I want to talk about fanfiction. Oh yes, fanfiction. A guilty pleasure. A hobby. A beautiful source of creative energy. Honestly, 'normal' people won't know anything about it. But for us, the fandom obsessed population, we will have read almost all the fanfictions in our fandom and are probably eagerly awaiting updates from our favourite fics. As an avid reader and writer of fanfiction, I thought that maybe it was time to do a little blog post about it.

This is me when people assume fanfiction is weird. 

If you haven't already, you might want to check out my friend Em, she did a wonderful post called: Why writing fanfiction isn't as crazy as you think. It's a fantastic post, please, read it. READ. READ. READ. That's enough with that or I'll start singing her praises like a choir. Let's get back to business *sings* to defeat the Huns. Fanfiction. I wouldn't go as far as calling this a taboo but I guess to the normals, we seem pretty damn crazy for investing so much time into something like fanfiction but they don't understand us. Fanfiction is just like any story you may read and you want to know the best thing, IT'S COMPLETELY FREE! I've sat in bed, reading novel-length fanfictions for absolutely nothing and if that's not beautiful I don't know what is. My current favourite has over 200 chapters and it's amazing, my day is instantly better when I get an email telling me that fic has updated.

So, firstly, I think fanfiction is a great creative outlet for anybody that likes writing. As any creative writing lecturer, or even writer, will tell you, you need to practice writing. Fanfiction is the perfect practice. It helps you to hone your style and work with characters that aren't necessarily your own. Weird, right? Wrong. For me, I find it exhilarating to write characters that fascinate me. Like, you probably guessed it already, Sherlock Holmes. He's probably one of the most interesting characters out there and various interpretations of him illustrate the creative touch of the writer. Could I ever come up with a character quite that interesting? I like to think so, but for now, I enjoy writing my own version of his character. I like the challenge of making him as close to the character I see on screen but also different, in a way not quite everyone would think possible but somehow works, do you get me? I don't think I'm making any sense but bear with me.

So, what's fanfiction then? It's just a lot of people passionate about films/books/movies choosing to channel their creative energy. I think it's beautiful.

I honestly think that the fanfiction community is one of the most supportive and imaginative groups of people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. There's nothing quite like getting a comment at the end of a new chapter saying 'I can't wait for more' or 'great chapter.' It's amazing. Even when people want to give you some constructive feedback alerting your to a spelling mistake, that's fine, it helps me to be a better writer, to make myself the best I can be. It blows my mind that people read something I write and actually like it and await the next chapter. It's the best feeling in the world.

My own fanfiction journey started in 2013. I have no idea how or where I heard about it, I just somehow stumbled upon it and a little while longer, I started writing fanfiction myself. Was it good? Probably not, but it was a start. It was a Merlin fanfiction. Yes, I was head over heels in the Merlin fandom. I'm not going to tell you what it was about or even the name, it was cringe. A couple more Merlin fanfiction, none of which were finished, was the beginning of my writing experience. After that, I dabbled in some Sherlock fanfictions, another one of my favourite shows. They were all vaguely similar and I thought that the best way to write was to include my own female character because I'm a girl, and writing female characters are easier, right? Not necessarily. But it was the best place to start for me. Did I stick to it? Yes, for a while and it worked. But, I guess, like other writers I know, I have a terrible habit of starting something and then leaving it unfinished when I get distracted by the thrill of a new project.

Over the next few years, I wrote 14 different fanfiction. No, you didn't misread. 14.

I had a moment or two when I thought I'd just stop altogether but by some kind of miracle, I thought of a new story and started writing it. That was over a year ago and I'm still writing it now, alongside a kind of side-story and another fic. Yes, I have three going at the same time and one more planned to go alongside them. It's safe to say, I'm kind of addicted to writing fanfiction. Do I write it all the time? No, just like any other writer, I have good days and bad days. I used to update my fics every other week and sometimes weekly but my final university, I had to prioritise my work. Since then, I've updated once. Which is shameful, I know. I've been kind of stuck, a lack of routine and some mental health issues have left me uninspired and unmotivated. This goes for normal writing as well as fanfiction, I'm just, not in the best place for it.

Does that mean I'll stop writing fanfiction? No. Never. I love it too much.

Honestly, most people aren't going to get it. You mention fanfiction and the conversation is halted, they don't understand and that's ok. They don't have to get it. To quote my dear friend Em, 'The things people generally associate fanfiction with are nerds, weird sex, weird storylines, and generally very poor writing. While all of the above can be true in many cases - and hell, I have definitely read some weird and awful things - that's simply not the truth about it.' [From Em's blog post Why writing fanfiction isn't as crazy as you think.] Fanfiction has a bad reputation because of a few ... strange fics, but that doesn't mean all of them are like that. Fanfictions are the greatest romances and tragedies you'll ever read. If you think that reading it or even writing it makes you weird, you're wrong. The only thing wrong is peoples attitude towards it and that is their problem, not yours. I'm going to love you and leave you with the knowledge that if you read or write fanfiction, you have my utmost respect. The writers especially, I salute you.

Also, if you didn't already know. Many people have made successful careers out of fanfiction. Sherlock the BBC show, fanfiction at its greatest. The book I read the other day, The Art in the Blood, Sherlock fanfiction. So, yes, fanfiction can open many doors.

I would like to thank you for taking the time to visit my blog and read my ramblings.

Tiffani. x


Popular Posts