OTW Fannews: Authors talk fanfic and fandoms

  • The Salt Lake Tribune talked fanfiction misconceptions with newly published author Christina Hobbs, who says it’s a mistake to think “[t]hat there’s a specific type of people who read and write fan fiction — scientists, business professionals, teachers and people who are well-educated to people who haven’t gone to college are all part of it. It’s not just women. It’s not just men. It’s not a certain age group. You have this huge group of people who want to write and read for others, and that’s what’s so amazing about it.”
  • Another published fanfic writer, Sam Starbuck, had this answer to the same question: “I’ve been in fandom almost twenty years, and not only have stereotypes presumably changed in that span of time, but the composition of fandom certainly has.” Talking about the inside perspective, he adds, “We tend to see fandom as a single cohesive unit, because we are part of a unit within fandom, and we think fandom is our unit—and some people think fandom reflects the real beliefs of people who aren’t in fandom, as well. But I don’t think that’s necessarily the case. Without even touching on the world outside of fandom, fandom itself is wider and louder and more diverse than any one person generally suspects. I do think I fit a fandom mold in a lot of ways—enthusiastic, nerdy, intelligent, awkwardly socialized—but so do plenty of people who aren’t in fandom.”
  • Author Victoria Schwab wrote about fans’ questions on continuing content. “It’s no secret that the hottest books selling right now started out as fan fiction. It’s no secret because it’s plastered all over the internet, and in the stores. Some books own it, and some books would rather not. The latter claim that while they might have had the seeds of their story in another (and really, aren’t most books inspired by elements of one sort or another) their stories no longer resemble their inspiration…And I think it’s being complicated by other endeavors–such as the Cassie Clare, Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson collaboration–that encourage the communal nature of a story.”
  • Many a literature class has focused on dissecting what the author meant to say in their work, but a new one instead uses the book as a jumping off point to examine the world. “”The Fifty Shades Trilogy” is a three-credit, 300-level American Studies course at American University focusing on Fifty Shades of Grey.” The packed course “involves studying personality disorders, eating disorders, sexual addiction, abuse, the evolution of Internet fan fiction and trends like the increase in sales related to BDSM paraphernalia. Public relations and marketing topics also comprise one-third of the course’s curriculum.”

What fanfic authors’ discussions have caught your attention? Write about them in Fanlore! Contributions are welcome from all fans.

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News of Note
  1. Emily H. commented:

    I completely agree with all of that. As a Fanfic writer since January of 2011 i find myself slightly embarrassed when i tell people that i write Fanfiction because i’m afraid they’ll judge me.