Today’s Soundtrack – Allie by Patrick Stump. (Here’s a thought–why don’t you listen whilst you read? I’m tryna give you a multisensory experience here, yo.)
I am a fan of any kind of writing.
I love words. Books, poems, TV, lyrics, blogs…literally anything that at some point in the creative process has involved someone scribbling on a piece of paper. I find that whole writing-by-candlelight thing fascinating. Which is why I endeavour to do it, natch.
In terms of books, though, there’s something that’s always bothered me. It kind of splits into two halves, and neither of the halves can be reconciled, so it’s essentially a pointless and rambling statement. But this is my blog, so tough shizz.
Número uno: it bothers me that authors never do what you want them to do.
Admit it: we all have our guilty fantasies about the characters we wish had gotten it on. All those lust-filled gazes that never amounted to anything can be pretty damn frustrating. And who says the characters even have to get together at the end of it? Keep to the main love story if that’s what you wanna do, but dammit, don’t fill our heads with possibilities then dash them like you’re a disciple of G. R. R. Martin. Not cool, man.
Número dos: it bothers me that authors do follow the obvious course/play to reader fantasies.
Yeah, we all love a love story. I’m as much a fan of the “finally they fucking did it” kiss as the next person. But, in a lot of cases, the moment of unbridled passion and loin-clenching flaming butterflies is so expected it’s almost passé. We all know it’s going to happen. Sure, it’s still fun and fulfilling and all that stuff to read, but ultimately, everyone is expecting it.
Yeah, I’m hard to please. I know. The only thing I could possibly think of that would solve this problem pour moi would be for the author to write the book a hundred times over, following every possible angle. But that would be insane, you scoff…wouldn’t it?
Welcome, friends, to the world of fan fiction.
*cue flashing lights and pumping techno music*
Fan fiction, for me, is a genius concept. There’s something beautiful about loving a story–loving characters–so much, you feel you have to write them again. And again, and again, and again, exploring every possibility and venturing into crossovers until you can’t even remember what’s actually canon anymore. It gives stories a universal depth that can’t come purely from the books themselves–unless you’re writing epic fantasy, in which case I applaud you. Books are no longer just stories–they become universes, with alternative pairings and ships and new elements.
As a writer, fan fiction is pretty damn easy to write. The characters are already there, and so is the audience’s love of them. All that’s left to do is harness the power of the story.
Fan fiction is by no means a recent discovery for me. This is, however, the first time I’ve tried writing it myself. Initially, my plan was to write a book that I intended to put up on Wattpad, as a way of boosting my audience–so people could check out my writing, and see if they liked it.
Then I discovered there was such a thing as Fall Out Boy fan fiction, and the rest, as they say, is history.
I know more Fall Out Boy trivia than anyone I know–with the possible exception of a fellow FOB fan fic writer, who shall hereafter be referred to as @birdsatemyface (because that’s her username on Mibba, the fan fic site–not because birds actually ate her face. That I’m aware of, anyway. Remind me to get back to you on that one.) Writing something has never been so easy. To put it in perspective, I’ve written around 30,000 words since last Thursday. It’s been cathartic, stress-releasing, knowing every word doesn’t have to be perfect, not worrying over every niggling thing because, hey, the info is already there, and if I mess it up, there’s always someone else who can write it better.
Posting chapter-by-chapter has been a real confidence booster, too. It’s a great feeling to get continual feedback, and to know people are enjoying what you’re writing.
I have an unfinished manuscript and exams, but I don’t feel guilty about spending time on my fic, because of the way it makes me feel. If anything, it’ll hone my craft. Hopefully when I come back to Deathfens in June (unfinished MS), I’ll have learned something from the experience.
I’m pretty sure I’ll keep writing fics for a long time, too.
Some people might see it as a step back, but in my eyes, the only thing spending time writing can do is make me better at my craft–whatever I’m writing.
If you want to check out my story, you can find it here. There’s sex–duh–and it’s essentially unedited, so don’t be expecting a masterpiece, but it’s a hell of a lot of fun to write. And when you’re writing for yourself (and other crazy fans like yourself), fun is all that matters.
(If you do head over to Mibba, I recommend checking out this story by @birdsatemyface. It’s epically long but sinfully good, and there’s a sequel. This girl has definite talent. Okay, now I’m done.)