Fanfiction

IWSG_NewBadge2016It’s the first Wednesday of the month again, time for a post for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group.
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The IWSG question this month: What is your favorite aspect of being a writer?

My answer: Hard to tell. I love most aspects of being a writer. I love the freedom to daydream, the ability to turn my dreams into stories, the readers’ reaction to my stories. I love writing the first draft and the revising stage. I love my heroes. It would be easier to say what my least favorite aspect is: marketing and sales. I’m struggling to sell my short stories to magazines, and nobody buys my novels, but my free novella on wattpad, Fibs in the Family, has a life of its own. It’s already climbed over 11,000 readers, and the numbers are rising steadily. And I don’t do anything about it. Perhaps, releasing free fiction on Amazon is the way to go for me?
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My post for this IWSG Wednesday is connected in some way to my answer above. Lately, I have been writing a short story belonging to another writer’s universe. It is my first attempt at fanfiction. I love the novels set in that universe; they inspire me. So I’m trying my hand at this quirky subgenre, and like any novice, I’m struggling with various issues.

One of those issues is: what do I do with the story when it is done? Granted, there are some websites dedicated to fanfiction and I could post the story there. Do I want to?

In my story, I don’t use any of the leading or even secondary characters the original writer wrote. I have my own characters exploring the universe I’m interested in, playing in one of its corners the original writer never highlighted and never populated. Perhaps I could alter a few telltale details and make it my own original story? Neither the plot nor the characters will be impacted much by such a change; it will be purely cosmetic. Of course, some similarity to the original milieu will remain, but if I’m careful, the setting would become almost unrecognizable. Do I want to go that route?

What do you do when you face such a quandary? Do you write fanfiction at all? Is fanfiction a sort of plagiarism, a lazy writing, or a tribute to an admired author? Should I abandon the story? Keep going and post it on wattpad? Turn it around into something truly original? What is your take on fanfiction?

 

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12 Responses to Fanfiction

  1. I’ve never written fan fiction as an adult, but that’s how I got started as a child: adding new characters and situations to favorite TV shows like Star Trek and Batman. I guess that’s really a huge genre now–and why not? What greater praise for the original writer than to expand on the world they’ve created? Good luck finding a home for your fan fiction stories.

  2. I would check Kindle Worlds to see if the book and world is listed on their site – it’s a regulated way that fan fiction authors can write and get paid for it! Other than that, I’m not really sure. I haven’t written any for a while.
    Best wishes on all of your writing!

  3. Diane Burton says:

    Like Rhonda (above) my girlfriend and I wrote fan fiction as high schoolers. We didn’t know that’s what it was called back then, but it was fun. Tyrean has a good idea. Check it out. And good luck!

  4. Donna Hole says:

    Its ok to be inspired by another author – and their creation. If you want to play around with fan fiction, nothing wrong with that. Just know you can’t make any money off it – no matter where you publish. I’d say tweak your concept and make it totally your own. I also agree with Tyrean though.

    Glad some of your stories are doing well on WattPad. Yep, people do seem to enjoy reading for free, lol.

    If you are happy with your writing, thats all that matters, right?

  5. I’ve never written fan fiction, but I see the others have great suggestions. I think what you do is special. I don’t think I have it in me to create a new world. Best of success, Olga.

  6. That’s hard. I’ve actually been wondering about that myself. I don’t write fan fiction, but I am inspired by other people’s art (music, literature, paintings). How do we use that inspiration without plagiarizing? And, how can we not create when we are so inspired?
    Good luck!
    IWSG co-host Mary at Play off the Page

  7. You could go either way. There are a ton of fan fiction sites. But if you know the adjustments you need to make to turn it into your own, that might be the way to go.

  8. I never thought much about Fan Fiction, and I’m not sure if I have ever read any, but it seems to me that in a way all writing is Fan Fiction. Most of us writers love to read and are inspired by our favorite authors, stories, setting, etc. While we may not write exactly about those characters, stories or settings, the inspiration to write comes from that love of reading right?

  9. I haven’t read or written any fan fiction, so can’t help you there. Congrats, though, on getting so many readers for Fibs in the Family. That’s outstanding!

  10. I haven’t written fanfiction in years but I really enjoyed it when I did. I actually started a story that has blossomed out of the fanfiction realm and become a story in its own right. Tyrean’s suggestion is a good one. I’d check that site out. And no, fanfiction is NOT lazy. It’s writing! Even if you never publish on a site, it’s fun and it allows you to focus on the mechanics of writing without the stress and work of world building. Good luck!

  11. lexacain says:

    Congrats on enjoying all aspects of writing so much and even bigger congrats on your success with Wattpad. I can’t imagine 11k people reading anything of mine. Why don’t you capitalize on your popularity and put more stories on Wattpad? In fact, the best idea is probably writing a trilogy where the first one is free on Wattpad and the rest are $.99-1.99 on Amazon. Good luck!

  12. Hm. I’ve never written fan fiction. I’d say either Wattpad or changing the details enough to make it stand alone. But I don’t really understand Wattpad so much, either, so I can’t say for sure!

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