Links Roundup for 1 June 2012

Here’s a roundup of fan fiction and Fifty Shades of Grey stories that might be of interest to fans:

  • Months after its re-release, Fifty Shades of Grey continues to make news in the most unexpected of ways, including some hastily written articles that prove strangely uninformative. These include an episode of the Dr. Oz show that used the book to focus on the science of arousal; various features pointing out how men like the trilogy too; both Glibert Gottfried and Ellen DeGeneres did readings from it; an article focusing on the hero’s home (“[Director of Sales Erik] Mehr said that about a year ago, his team began to get phone calls from people who wanted to know ‘the layouts of the penthouse and the details of the condos.’…When the Escala held open houses, visitors included ‘Fifty Shades’ fans who wandered about, checking on the amenities and basic floor models.”); and a discussion of a fanfic remix as well as an interview with the author of a published parody who notes “‘Fifty Shames,’…paid more than my first two books that took several years to write. It’s just kind of mind-boggling to me.”
  • Also boggled are the book’s original publishers Amanda Hayward and Jennifer Pedroza, who were featured in a story about the international connections between the publishers and author. “Amanda and I met online through fan fiction,” said Pedroza…”We realized we had some really good writers so we started The Writers Coffee Shop (in October 2010).” The venture is doing well. “The Writers Coffee Shop will still receive royalties for the next three years, Pedroza said, enough to convince her to retire from teaching and focus on publishing for awhile.” A post by obsidianwings also looked at the issue of publishing in relation to the book and suggested that fandom is becoming mainstream publishing’s slush pile reader.
  • The issue of literary quality is something examined by The Record in “’50 Shades’ another brick in the wall between fans and critics”. “These days, anyone can write a book – or at least be credited with writing one. Biographies, autobiographies, novels and cookbooks are published based on reality-TV success, athletic victories or, in James’ case, Internet fan fiction gone viral. Readers want to be part of the discussion with their friends, whether it’s a well-regarded look back in history or a racy romance that may not be well-written. Concerns of the critics are not a priority…Many reviewers hated ‘Bridges of Madison County,’ ‘The DaVinci Code’ and ‘Eat, Pray, Love,’ yet the public loved them all, as books and as movies.”
  • A Florida library is refusing to put ’50 Shades’ on their shelves–though technically, it’s in good literary company as a banned book. Brevard County, Florida spokesman Don Walker told the New York Daily News “‘We don’t put pornography on our bookshelves,’ branding the book ‘mommy porn’ before admitting, ‘I’m not sure what that is.'” Perhaps the bans allow libraries to avoid spending money on the many copies needed to satisfy reader demand. A Miami New Times blogger noted that not only is “Every single [copy] checked out. What’s amazing is that there are currently 450 holds on the book.” He then compared this to other popular books in the system and noted that “The only book that rivals Fifty Shades in Miami-Dade Library’s most popular list at the moment seems to be The Hunger Games.”
  • Lastly there’s been discussion of fan fiction itself, particularly in college newspapers. One of these, The Daily Collegian, published a two-part article that included an interview with OTW board member, Francesca Coppa. And BlackBook listed “Superstars of Fan Fiction,” including OTW board member, Naomi Novik.

If you write or read fan fiction, why not contribute to Fanlore? Additions are welcome from all fans.

We want your suggestions! If you know of an essay, video, article, event, or link you think we should know about, comment on the most recent Links Roundup — on, LJ, or DW — or give @OTW_News a shoutout on Twitter. Links are welcome in all languages!

Submitting a link doesn’t guarantee that it will be included in a roundup post, and inclusion of a link doesn’t mean that it is endorsed by the OTW.

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