Fanfiction is where someone reads/watches/plays any show, anime, book, game,etc and comes up with an idea for that show, anime, book, game, etc. What they can do is write a story using that idea, and the ideas of the show/game.
So, here's a place to discuss if you've written any fanfiction, and would like anyone else to read it, post a link to it here. Also, share your opinion of the concept of fanfiction.
Questions for discussion:
Should fanfiction be allowed?
Should OCs (original characters) be allowed?
What, in your opinion, are the good things about fanfiction?
What, in your opinion, are the bad things about fanfiction?
Although I personally haven't written any fanfictions yet, I'm an avid reader of them. Many people argue that it's not original or it's stealing someone elses' work, but I don't think that it's true. First of all, there are MANY original fanfics out there that are AU, and besides, these stories are call "fanfictions" for a reason. They weren't supposed to be "original". Of course, I've seen fics where new characters are added, but whether it makes the story better or not really depends on the story. Anyway, the reason why people write fanfics is because they really like the series/characters, so they want to put them in other situations. As to the "stealing" aspect, it doesn't really exist because most writers put up disclaimers. So, I think fanfictions should definitely be allowed. Granted that not all fanfics are good (in fact, most are not very good), there are those special few out there that just blows your mind! Some of them are so good that I wish that their story could be what they showed instead of the real show... ^_^
Anyway, writing fanfics is a good way to practice one's writing skills and use one's imagination. I think they can be the starting point to serious writing; usually, after writing many fanfics, people will want to start to write original stories. But that leads to the bad point. The stories cannot be completely original, so there's not as much freedom in character development... (of course, the characters can be OOC, but that's a whole other topic all together.)
So yea, fanfics are really awesome! I just love them to death!
Ah, I'm glad someone else enjoys fanfiction.
To answer my own questions, fanfiction isn't stealing an author's work, as long as you don't try to claim it as your own. Then you could get in a lot of trouble.
OC characters annoy me to no end. However, I can stand them as long as they don't turn into a Mary Sue and aren't the main character. I suppose they can be allowed and there's no reason to ban them or anything.
The good things about fanfiction is that by writing, I've gotten so much better at typing and writing in general. I've also become much more open minded about things.
The bad things about fanfiction...they're really addicting...especially if you've found a really good story...then I spend about three-quarters of my day reading them.
I'm a big fan of Megaman/Rockman and Harry Potter, so if you like them, you can read my fics if you want.
I love fanfiction; I'm an avid reader, and I do write it, though most stuff doesn't get posted because I don't think it's good enough or I never finish it.
Personally, the only types of OC that bother me are Mary-Sues/Gary-Stus, because the author is just inserting themselves into the story so they can kill the character they hate or have their favourite character fall in lov with them or somesuch nonsense.
Sometimes, it is literally impossible to write a good fanfic without the use of OCs; I'm not talking one-shot short stories here, I mean big epic works. One of my personal favourite fics is a Final Fantasy VII called "A Long, Hard Road" by TwigCollins. It's a post-game AU with around 500,000 words and 37 chapters, plus the epilogue. The scope of this fic is such that, if the auther had tried to write it without creating original characters, it would have been terrible. There are just too many roles to be filled to only have canon characters in it (plus it involves the military, so yeah... the game cast does not an entire army make, no matter how hard you try). In the course of the story, we see pretty much every named character from the game at least mentioned, and I can think of about six or seven necessary OCs from the fic, without which it wouldn't have worked.
I can gurantee it isn't one of those fics that is really popular but shouldn't be, too. I'm really critical of what I read when it comes to fanfiction, and I think it is absolutely fabulous. When I finished this fic, it was like finishing Shogun (one of my all-time favourite books). You know that feeling you get when you finish a fantastic book and you let your breath just kind of "whoosh" out of your lungs? Yeah, like that. (At least, that's wat I do...)
Basically, what this tangent boils down to is that sometimes you need original characters to make a story work. Sometimes there just isn't a canon character who can play the necessary role. Well-written original characters can be just as lovable and well-rounded and intriguing as the canon characters we all know and love (or maybe hate, but you know what I mean).
If anyone out there likes reading Final Fantasy VII fanfiction, and you don't mind yaoi/slash/manlove/gay guys/whatever you want to call it, then "A Long, Hard Road" is one story you definitely should not pass up. </shameless plug for Twig>
On a slighty off-topic note, I think I've seen you around FFNet on occasion... I post there, too; similar screenname to here-- tsukishizukayuuki (it was just "tsukiyuuki" but I changed it to make sure I wouldn't be numbered. ^^ )
If you see a "tsukiyuuki" or "tsukishizukayuuki" anywhere on the net, it's probably me. I use the same name for everything; oh, I'm sometimes "tsuki-chan" as well.
...Well, that turned into a giant plug for Twig, didn't it? Um, oops? I actually didn't mean for it to turn out like that...
I've written many a fanfiction in my day (Mostly revolving around the movie Newsies, and the TV series Kim Possible), but I haven't done so in a few years, since I've moved on to writing orignial works and attempting to get published.
Should fanfiction be allowed?
I don't see any reason why not, as long as the author is not trying to make money off of it, and not absuing the original work. An example of abuse is some idiots who were unhappy that Harry and Hermione did not fall in love in the latest Harry Potter novel, so they 'rewrote' the book, but spliced in a lot of JKR's original writing and tried to call it their own.
Should OCs (original characters) be allowed?
Ah, the eternal question. I think OC's should be used very, very sparingly. Most of the time, they are really not necessary. A few examples of necessary OC's is if you are trying to write a heterosexual romance story about an all or almost-all male or female cast of characters (Such as Newsies) OC's should never be the main character, unless you completely rock at writing and life. I have only seen one or two people pull this off well, and hundreds that made me weep for the future of literature.
What, in your opinion, are the good things about fanfiction?
Fanfiction allows for people to show their appreciation for the author, by wanting to take part in something they created. It also helps people to get into writing, who haven't writtien previously. (That's how I got to become a writing nerd. By writing really, really bad fan fiction. )
What, in your opinion, are the bad things about fanfiction?
I think the worst thing about fan fiction is when an author decides that they are 'better' than the orignal author, and only want to write fan fiction to prove how 'badly' the original author handled their characters. *pats author on the head* Right. That's why they're published and you're not.
Sorry if that last bit came off as bratty. I've just had some bad experiences with people like that.
I pretty much agree entirely here, with one exception. Something I have seen a couple authors do (and do well) is rewrite the book from the POV of a different character. When they did this, they of course used a lot of the author's original dialogue, because it was the story basically from the other side. It works best when the whole book is told in the limited-third-person from the POV of one character only; then a good author can do it sucessfully with a different character using the same type of POV. The best example of this I saw was someone who rewrote "Howl's Moving Castle" as if it had been told entirely in Howl's POV, as opposed to Sophie's. The dialogue is the same, because changing the dialogue would have changed it completely, but the author said right off that she would be using Diane Wynne-Jones original dialogue. Here I believe it was important, because the dialogue is necessary to the story, so she couldn't leave it out, and rewriting would have changed the fic totally.
As I said in my previous post, some fanfiction needs OCs to be done well, and some doesn't. Personally, I love a good OC. "Good" being the operative word here, because bad OCs are just that. Bad. Good OCs, on the other hand, can make a story seem much more in-depth and involved. When an author takes the time to create good OCs, you know they're putting a lot of thought into the story, because bad OCs are easy to create, while good ones are not.
I have to admit, these are the types of fans (also known as fanbrats, fanthings, fanits, fantwats, and other not-so-nice names in places such as the LJ community fanficrants) that myself-- and most other serious authors/readers dislike the most. The fans that think they're special and entitled and that they're better than the original author. Of course, since they are better, small things such as proper spelling, proper grammar, and having the characters actually act in-character can easily be overlooked, since they are just that special. (Please excuse while I retrieve my soul-- it had to be removed to make room for all that sarcasm.)
I agree with you there. The work I was referring to was written by a fanbrat or two, because they thought they were SOMUCHSPESHULER than JK Rowling, which is why I categorized it as abuse.
Ah, I see. ^_^ Sorry about that misunderstanding.
But I think you'll agree that the worst types of writer/fanbrat are the plagiarisers. They are, I think by far, the worst type out there. At least the SOMUCHSPESHULER ones are writing their own stories (ish), and not stealing those of other authors and thinking they'll get away with it.
In fact, I just finished submitting abuse reports on two sites, Fanfiction.net and Fanart-Central, because the author on FF.net had first stolen someone else's fic, and when I looked at "her" art on Fanart-Central, she's stolen other people's artwork as well.
Two of her five pieces are guaranteed stolen, as I have the links to the sites with the original /bookmarked/, and the other three are definitely suspect. Two of them are done in the exact style of a webcomic called "Your Wings Are Mine" and the third has someone else's signature right next to where she put her computer-generated text "Made by Angel2Demon" signature. Plus this third one has the year 2002 on it, she posted it after Jan 1 of this year, and if she'd actually drawn it in 2002 she'd have been 12, and the quality of that one is far superior to the quality of the twothat and newer and that may, possibly, be hers. (Though they probably aren't.)
I've read a lot of Harry Potter fanfiction and a s far as I can say some of them are better than the books themselves! I thinkit's a form of expression and that it's really good to express yourself with someone else's characters, for example Harry Potter you can do love stories and lot of stuff stuff that you would like to read on books.
Given that many published books are made by authors continuing or expanding on the stories and characters of another author's works, fanfiction is in good company. The main difference being the level of quality for a lot of fanfiction is poor. I imagine part of this has to do with maturity and age. A pre-teen teenager has much more time (and perhaps drive) to write fanfiction on a book or anime than an adult with a full-time job. Perhaps not. But good fanfiction is a worthwhile and valuable in much that same way musical rearrarangment like that of ocremix.org is worthy.
Yay for people who don't think fanfiction is T3H EB1L!!!1! I seem to come across a lot of people who think that fanfiction is easier to write than original fiction, and that it gives no challenge.
Personally, I find fanfiction more challenging for the simple fact that [general] you have to work within specific parameters and personalities. When writing original fiction, you can make any character do anything on a whim and not justify it and just say that it's normal for that particular character. With fanfiction, however, you can't make any character do any random act, because certain characters aren't going to do certain things without good reason.
In fanfiction, you can't have someone who is on the Dark Side (ie, Draco Malfoy, to go with a HP example) suddenly switch to the Light Side without a /lot/ of character development and justification. It would simply not be in-character, and it wouldn't be believable. Once you can justify his switching to the Light Side, and include the appropriate consequences, one cannot make Draco suddenly start loving Muggles and Muggle-borns; again, it would not be in-character. He's spent his entire life believing in and agreeing with his prejudices, and they aren't all going to vanish overnight or the second he switches to the Light Side. Heck, even if he can overcome his upbringing, he'd probably never get all buddy-buddy with Harry, Ron, and Hermione, simply because there's so much animosity between them. They could learn to tolerate and/or respect each other, but best buddies is probably beyond the scope of that, unless the story is incredibly long and in-depth, and spans a year or more.
YES! ARGH! Plagarizers tick me off to no end. One of my favorite fanartists is CONSTANTLY getting her stuff ripped off on DeviantArt and it's so annoying argh. I can totally understand why she gets frustrated a lot. Argh.
I love fan fiction. SOme of my favorites are, Harry Potter, Star Wars, Gilmore Girls, and DBZ. It is a wierd combination though, but it is what I read. I also have written, and am stilling writing Lily/James fan fics. Most of them are humoristic... a strong point for me. I also threw drama into my first one. It was diary based. I got good reviews for it, so I continued. I don't know wheter or not I will write more later though... I need to compare my fan base.
I love Lily/James! Got a link to any of your stuff?
Yay! Lots of fanfiction fans! Woot!! *cheers*
I'm very exicted about this thread... I'm hoping it hasn't died (since no one's posted here since January).
Alas, I am a fanfiction writer. I write my own stuff too, I have for years, but that's not what this thread is about.
I've noticed that a lot of people wrote that they enjoy reading HP Fanworks. *coughs* I'm writing my own version of the 6th book -no, this isn't because I didn't like the 6th book -in fact, I haven't read it. It's a bit of a long story, but here's why:
After the 5th book came out, I became impatient for the 6th book. Having writing some of my own stuff, I decided: 'hey, I can write Harry Potter!'. So I did, I figured it would be a short work... I had an idea for it and so I started writing... about 10 pages into it, I gave it to my older sister to read, who, like me, loves HP. She was disappointed that I didn't start it at Number 4 Privet Drive (I started at the Start of Term Feast), and she asked me to put a Quidditch match in there was well, because, (and I was extremely flattered to hear this), I wrote it like Rowling would have.
About 40 pages later, I decided to start it over because I was having way too many ideas and well, it was fun.
2 years later and I'm still working on it. I decided not to read the 6th book when it came out because I wanted to finish what I started first.
I'm writing with the intent to make it more like J.K. Rowling's style than my own, as it's her series. That, and like many of you said, I can't stand it when 'serious' fanworks abuse the characters.
So, um, yeah, that's a bit all long-winded and such. I could go on, but I think I'd rather like to hear what you have to say.
I like to see new ideas, not befuddled versions of how fans wish other peoples ideas were really like.
I actually saw a LOT of people writing their own Book Six since there was such a huge gap after book five. Obviously, once book six came out they all became Alternate Universe stories, but I personally love reading the really good ones. I think it's really interesting to see other people's ideas for the furture of any series.
One of my favourite types of fanfiction is actually crossover stories, but only when they are done well. A good crossover is like a turkey dinner, but a bad one is like gruel.
What is everyone else's favourite type of fanfiction?
I havent really seen any good ones I guess. What I get most of the time is stupid stories where the author takes the liberty of adding their own lame characters and mixing up romantic interests- along with a lukewarm plot that isnt suited for anything. Then again, I havent read alot of fanfiction.
The problem with fanfiction is that Sturgeon's Law definitely applies - 90% of everything is crap. The bad fics are so numerous that it's hard to find the good ones unless you know where/how to look. Personally, I find and author I like and then look at what's on their favourites list, if there is one, because good authors generally only recommend other good authors. Also, if the author has a personal website, sometimes they archive fic by other people that they enjoy.
Another thing that generally works is to look at smaller, lesser known archives. One of my favourite fanfic sites is http://www.ficwad.com ; it's an archive in the style of fanfiction.net, but much smaller, with a lot more good fics than bad. You can even look for stories that include certain specific characters.
Yay for good fanfiction! *laughs*
I'm still working on my site ... I absolutely hate broadcasting that I write Harry Potter fanfiction, btw, even though I do want people to read it. Mostly cause when I do it feels like I'm two, hopping up and down trying to get people to read my fanfiction in a sea of others screaming for the same thing. Most people won't read fanfiction because, you're right - 90% is terrible.
Not a pretty thing.
>_< Once I get the site up, (hopefully before the weekend), I'll add a link to this post and one to my signature so that if folks are interested, they can read it. And that's all I'm going to say about it for now.
I'm going to have fic on my website when I get it up as well, though it'll probably be a while because I'm ridiculously busy. ^^;;
I tend to avoid the subject of slash/yaoi with most people, because I live in a very small, redneck-ish area; things could get a bit messy. But yeah, at least 90% of everything is crap, and the really big fandoms seem to have a higher percentage. Thank gods for my small-ish, fairly well-written fandoms (Firefly and Hikaru no GO, mostly), and my one really big, well-written fandom, Stargate SG-1. (Woohoo for stargatefan.com!! So much good genfic, all in one place!)
I guess I just dont get why people dont write their own original storys. If you have the skill, why not? Its so much more rewarding to create your own thing than reproduce somthing sombody else did. For me, anyway.
A lot of people I know write both. Honestly, I find writing fanfiction more difficult than writing original stuff. The thing is, that when you're writing something original, you can make you characters do anything and still say they are being themselves, because what is in-character is defined by you. With fanfiction, there's a set of established parameters to work within, and if you're making the characters do something that they would normally never do, you need to justify so that you can say the character is still themself. Plus it can just be fun to see what you can do within the bounds of the established characterisation and universe.
i love fanfiction, they keep me sane
They should defintely be allowed, because for example; Harry Potter fanfiction helps to keep the fandom alive inbetween the books. It also helps the writers improve their writing skils, before they start to write their own stories.
Personally, if i was an author and people had written fanfiction based on my story/film/tv show i would be very honoured! Knowing that people enjoyed what i wrote so much.
OCs should be allowed, they improve the story and as i said before, helps the author improve their writing skills by learning how introduce characters to a plot.
The good things about fanfiction (a long list...) :
- Free to read, dont have to pay to read them (apart from the cost of an internet connection)
- Helps to keep fandoms alive, like i said before with the harry potter series.
- Helps to improve developing writers skills
- Shows other point of views to stories, i.e A fanfiction that i am currently reading is called Hermione Granger and the Half Blood prince, its Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince in Hermione Grangers point of view.
- Basically, theyre awesome.
The Bad Things About Fanfiction:
- NONE...apart from when 11 year olds try to write fanfics with sex in...thats terrible.
Oh yeh..sorry about the use of Harry Potter as an example so many times
The things I don't like most about fanfiction is how hard it can be to find good fics for the really big fandoms, like Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings. There are so many badly written stories, self-inserts, Mary-Sue stories, and out of character stories it can be overwhelming. It's true when they say that 90% of everything is crap.
What it comes down to for me is that there are sometimes questions I have about a film or show that cannot be answered any other way than to see it written down in a story. It's the "what if?" questions that drive me nuts. What if things were different, or something else happened?
There are some really fantastic writers out there. I think part of the appeal of both writing (and reading it) is that you're already familiar with the characters. Some of the better writers can take the next step from there to improve their original works.
I agree completely! That's why I keep reading fic and spending time slogging through all the crap to find the good stuff.
It's all totally worth it in the end when you finally happen upon a really good one.
OMG, yes!! I've actually come into some good fanfic fortune lately and found several authors with lots and lots of goodfic. ^_^ So I am pleased.
Obviously, I write fanfiction. *points to sig* Or, I used to. It was one of my favorite pastimes when I was super bored studying.
I think fanfiction is great in encouraging creativity. It does not infringe copyright because you acknowledge that you're a fan of the show, and you are merely "borrowing" the characters for your own enjoyment. It does not trash the characters in any way; but an homage to the creator and to the series is more like it.
I got into fanfiction because it was a fabulous way to get to know a series. They're never authoritative, and are often misleading, but usually when I get started on a series I look at the fandom. If it's a good, healthy, thriving fandom, I join in. The best of fics for me do not diverge from the storyline and keep the characters, well, canon. I don't like AUs very much nor OCs, and so I tend to drift in stories that just "add" some scenes that were never there in the series but would fit nicely. Besides, I like the lyricism of some of the works written. Ficcing is a good measure for fandom growth.
I think the best of fans write fics because, well, fandoms are created to build communities -- in what Matt Hills calls the establishment of a "participatory culture" in his book Textual Poachers. Lately I've found a lot of works about fanfics that credit it as legitimate discourse.
I can attest to that. The first series I ever got involved in the fandom, it made me take a very close look at the series itself. It's one of the only ones that I can hear a quote from the series and tell you what episodes it came from, and detail the background to that. I can be interested in a series, but unless I'm looking at it that closely for fandom projects, I can never quite recall in *that* much detail.
I'll have to check out that book. I've seen in the last couple years the mainstream effect some shows have had in colleges. I've seen some classes come up that devote their time to entire shows. I never thought much of it until I became personally involved, but it's all very interesting.
I have to agree with both of you, varon and jenice.
Also, I'm going to have to look at that "Textual Poachers" book now, too.
I wonder if it's in the university library system...? We DO have courses on TV/media influences on pop culture....
I've seen some pretty amazing fanfiction. I used to read a lot of Star Wars fanfics because it killed me how the series was just OVER. And I saw some awesome things. But I also saw some crap.
So I have my own definition of what a "good" fanfic is: It must be realistic in terms of the original story, the writing itself must be good, and the fanfic must have some sort of theme or point other than a continuation of its writer's fantasies.
And no, writers of fanfiction are not lazy. It's pretty hard; I've tried it. It's not much different from writing a story where the characters are based on you and people you know.
As a fanfic writer who's been called lazy, uncreative, a plagiarist, and a number of other things: THANK YOU. ^___^