Posted in Posts, Writing

The dark hole of fanfiction

Back when I was a bit younger, say 10, 11, 12, 13, I wrote fanfiction. I wrote A LOT of fanfiction. Mostly Marauders (esp James and Lily), and the occasional bits of Twilight and Artemis Fowl. I loved it so much, until I got to high school and realised how lame it was. I mean, why can’t I write about my own characters? My own worlds? Why do I have to be so obsessed with fictional worlds? Then came my dark phase of never writing, unless it was mid-depressive phase and I was getting out all the ugly emotions. I felt so uninspired with my own characters, even though not long before that I was non-stop writing all these little one-shots about the Marauders. I made up this huge stigma about fanfiction, and it meant that I stopped doing something that I love. 

Now, I try to keep my fangirling to things like playing Hamilton constantly since November until I swapped to Moana, and looking and Dan and Phil fan art and fan theories, and scrolling through everything Instagram has to offer on different tags. It’s like I’m a massive fan, but on my terms. I wouldn’t really call myself part of the fandom. I

Marauders
My lil fanfiction babes

would probably really enjoy reading fanfiction (okay, maybe not of real life people), and then writing my own. It’s better than everything I’m not writing! But I can’t stop thinking about the endless amount of porn that’s out there, and how I’d hate that people would think I wrote that sort of stuff. I swear I’d just write cute little Angelica and Alexander conversations where the sexual tension is unbearable but never acted on! I’m a good child! And it’s not as if I’d tell anyone in real life anyway, it’d just be my internet people that’d know about it, and if you’re going to think that’s cringy, you’d be cringing by now. 

So, what’s the problem? Am I really that opposed to feeling like I’m a weirdo that I won’t do something I could enjoy? I won’t even read it, just because I know that it’s an endless hole that I won’t get out of. Surely reading it isn’t that dangerous, right? Even with a never ending list of other books that I want to read?

Listen, this post isn’t going anywhere. It’s just my rambly thoughts. And I’m interested to know how you all feel about fanfiction – do you read it? Write it? Live and breathe it? Or are you on the opposite, more judgy side with me?

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Author:

I was a book blogger for a while, and I now blog about every little thing in life I can think of. Bear with me while I try all these new posts out... I'm a New Zealand teen who gets angry about the world (but not angry enough for tumblr). I like to capture the world through photos and words, and read in all the moments in nz-squadbetween. I have an overwhelming desire to see every corner of the world I possibly can, and hug the people I love in all those corners. I can't do make up to save myself, and you're more likely to find me buying matching stationary than matching clothes. My nerd hobbies include a new found love of the Avengers, reading YA, watching Game of Thrones, How I Met Your Mother, and every vlogger I can find, and being the last person on the music bandwagons. I have big plans for the rest of my life, including university, teaching, travelling, and having an army of puppies. I plan to blog every second of it!

20 thoughts on “The dark hole of fanfiction

  1. I still write fanfiction. I just have so many ideas about fictional worlds, and I feel like I need to get them down whenever I can. The me from five years ago would be really shocked about how many “real life” people know that I write fanfiction too. I didn’t like telling people at first, but I’ve discovered that most of them don’t really care, though I still don’t hand out links to my fanfiction to them. No one has really assumed that I’m writing smut, at least not to my face. I’m not sure if that’s because they’re so clueless about fanfiction that they have no idea that’s a stereotype or if it’s because they know me and can figure out that that’s not what I’m writing. Either way, I’ve been pretty surprised at people’s reactions when I slowly started admitting that I write fanfiction.

    I will say that I’m much pickier about what I’ll read these days than I used to be. When I was younger, I’d read just about anything, but now I look at stories and glance over a ton of them before coming to something I actually read. It’s not just the stories riddled with grammar mistakes either. I’m so much pickier about potential plots than I used to be.

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    1. That’s really good that your friends are so nice about it! Or uncaring, at least. I’m actually really surprised, but yay 🙂
      And I understand being really picky! I mean, it’s just like a novel, you wouldn’t read everything you can get your hands on

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  2. I enjoy fanfiction, although I don’t seem to have time to read it anymore! I read a ton my senior year of high school because I was obsessed with Agent Carter at the time (I mean… I still am, but like I said I have no time to read anymore BECAUSE COLLEGE) and fanfiction was the only way I could read about f/f pairings for the show. I guess I’m mostly interested in how fanfiction can make fandoms more welcoming to less heteronormative audiences? I know a lot of people who explored their sexuality by writing and reading fanfiction, and I think that’s really cool.

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  3. I love this post. I never wrote any fanfiction, and I never really read it either. My only reason is basically just cause I’m too busy reading other things. There’s too many books I want to read to have time for fanfic reading. I think if I ever went to the right places on the internet years ago, I would have been sucked into the fanfic world, but I mostly participated in fandom through forum discussions. I did an RPG forum for Harry Potter at one point, and that was as close to fanfic as I got. In general I think fanfic is a great way to get into writing, be creative, and meet people. But it’s not for everyone. Again, awesome post! 🙂

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    1. Yeah, I have way too many other things I want to read or watch, it’d just be something else to take up all my time! It’s definitely about the fandoms you’re in and who you talk to online, and as someone who wasn’t allowed to talk to too many people, I think it was the best way to get involved. Thank you so much! 🙂

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  4. I wrote a lot of FF in highschool and only stopped when I got to Uni because I didn’t have time. I don’t read it that often nowadays but every few weeks or so I go on and catch up.
    I like fanfiction. It’s fun and easy and got me writing. Perhaps so many people are drawn to it because it takes out the stress of having to develop their own characters and scenarios. That doesn’t make anyone less of a writer. I also liked being able to contribute to various fandoms as I like being a part of them.
    I’m not a very creative person at all. I don’t have these genius plot ideas come to me every night or anything like that so the fact that I was able to type out stories longer than some novels through fanfiction is really quite impressive. As much as my writing was awful at the beginning and some of the plots were cringy, I’ll never regret all the time and effort I put into writing and reading fics.

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    1. Yeah, finding time is definitely tricky. It does seem a lot easier than writing your own stuff, although of course it’s still proper writing! And it is really good for people who maybe aren’t as creative when it comes to characters. It’s the perfect way to get into fandoms too like you said 🙂

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  5. I once wrote a Hunger Games fanfiction, my auntie thought it was the real book. She thought I’d just copied the text into a notebook, and when I explained to her about fanfiction she couldn’t understand. It was quite funny really. 😂 But that was a while ago, and I haven’t written or read any ever apart from that. I feel like fanfiction is a dark hole like you say, with some undoubtedly fantastic pieces of writing in the midst but also…ones I don’t want to stray too near. 😀

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  6. OH, fanfiction. I have a lot of feelings. I don’t write it much, and I don’t read it as much as I used to, but I do think that it can be really great in many ways. I mean, it does have problems — like people focusing REALLY heavily on romantic relationships, and especially m/m ones, sometimes kind of to the point where it’s uncomfortable? But despite that I think that it can be a great way to learn stuff about the mechanics of writing & tropes, and to find things that you can’t find in mainstream media.
    (People always assume fanfiction = porn but like tbh the ~sex stuff~ is probably one of my least favourite parts of fic???? I mean, people can do whatever as long as it’s not damaging! But I don’t like to read it haha.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, I think for new writers especially it can be really helpful to improve your writing! I agree about all the romance though, there’s barely ever just friendship, and I love a bit of friendship! Although with the gay relationships, they’re something you’ll rarely see in the thing you’re obsessed with

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      1. Yeah! It’s really interesting to see how a piece can be changed when you present the same character in different ways and stuff.
        I think fic often does a really good job of including queer characters in a sensitive way, but I guess sometimes I feel people just reduce characters to their sexuality and how the relationship itself appeals to them, rather than anything else about the characters… (But I do like fic a lot, having said.)

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  7. I never could write fanfiction. Not because it was fanfiction, but because I could never find the right words, or the right way to portray the characters that I love so deeply. I read a lot of it though, back in my freshman and sophomore years of high school. My junior year I didn’t have read it as frequently. This year, I am so incredibly picky with what I read (fanfiction wise). I find myself retreating to the first fandom I read fics for (back when I found out that fanfiction was a thing) more often than the things I’m into now.
    However I feel like fanfiction is a beautiful extension of what a fan fell in love with. I see it almost as bonus episodes/chapters/ deleted scenes/etc. Like you get to have everything that happens in cannon, and then you get all these scenarios that happen outside of it. You can see characters pair up with other characters that would never happen inside of cannon, or you can see the mindset a background character might have. Fanfiction is, in my opinion, a gift. One that I am happy that authors so willingly share with the rest of us.

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    1. This is such a wonderful comment, sorry for taking so long to respond to you! I definitely understand why you struggled to write it, it can be so hard to feel like you aren’t doing your favourite characters justice. But it really is great to feel like the series doesn’t have to end where the author says it does, it’s up to all of us as to when it ends! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I’ve recently started writing fanfiction again. As someone also working on an original novel, I think that it’s a good way to practice. I’ve learned how to post regular, how to title, staying in character, responding to reviews… and on top of that, I’ve written down tons of ideas that would’ve just been stuck in my head competing for my attention.

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    1. That’s a good way to look at it, as practice for your novel! It can definitely be helpful sticking to a deadline when you know you have people waiting on your next post. That sounds like a really good way to use it 🙂

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  9. Did you ever read “How To Tame A Maurader”? It is by far my favorite hp fanfic that i’ve ever read. I highly suggest it! 🙂 I also wrote fanfics when I was younger (12-15ish) and honestly it was one of my favorite parts of my childhood. I felt so inspired and creative and loved that it brought me closer to a close knit community. I know it has a weird stigma attached to it but I dont view it negatively at all. It made me realize how much I love writing and I even majored in creative writing & english in college (im graduating this year –yay–). If writing fanfics is what makes your heart happy then do it– screw what everyone else thinks! xx

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    1. I haven’t read it, but it sounds good! I know exactly what you mean, I feel like I wrote a lot more when I was younger than I do now… Ooh, that’s actually a good idea for a post, about feeling more pressure on what we write!
      Anyway, it’s definitely a hard thing to look past the stigma, but I’d like to try! Congrats on graduating as well 🙂

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