The Power of Fan-Fiction

While I have not talked much about fan-fiction on this site, I feel that we should for I have already been engaged on the topic by another blogger, Chrissy’s Writing Challenge. Here posts are usually short and sweet, and I don’t mind for each blogger tends to write their blog in their own unique way.

In her post about the topic of fan-fiction she said the following:

 I like the idea of using characters that you know and love and writing about them but it always seems a little like stealing.

Yes, I commented back on her post, and while I could copy the whole comment that I left her I will let you click on the link above, which will take you to the post. However, I will summarize by stating that fan-fiction is not necessarily stealing for it is more of away for a show to build a presence from one person’s perspective.

I also noted that show runners and show writers tend to look at fan-fiction as away to see how much of a presence the show is getting online. Granted, as writers we all should note that the Fifty Shades of Grey series was originally a fan-fiction piece based on the Twilight Saga. Also the show Gargoyles had one of the largest fan-fiction communities than any other show, and due to this community they used to have a convention for the show.

Yes, a convention just for one show. Furthermore, their big kick off event was either writing, reading, or discussing fan-fiction based on the show. If that doesn’t tell you the power of fan-fiction I don’t know what will.

I have written a few fan-fiction pieces for the following: Gargoyles, Hocus Pocus, The Young and the Restless, and fairy tales.

While some may see it as stealing ideas, I see it as a way for one to get their own view of how a show or story should be going, even though, show runners and show writers will tell the story the way that they want to tell it. But it’s still away to make creativity happen. Also most writers started off as fan-fiction writers before they published their own works.

But it should also be known that some show-runners and writers have been known to read fan-fiction pieces to see how others view the show. Not only do they read it and encourage it, but I have heard one or two say at conventions that they are flattered by all the fan-fiction that come from viewers.

It must all be said that at times, fan-fiction can raise the bar as far as ratings, and that is alright, as long as they are inspired to write to keep the ideas being generated onto the page. So it must be said that I’m on the side of the writer who feels inspired by what they see or hear that they want to write a piece and that they want to join in on the community.

Also based on fan-fiction, that is how some theories for shows are conceived from, and some of the theories are not that bad. If you want to see a community that has a tone of theories right now, look no further than Game of Thrones. Yes, we fans of the show are eagerly awaiting for season 8 to begin, but in the mean time all we can do is theories and speculate about what is going to take place.

While others put down fan-fiction, I feel that it should be embraced as it is a story on its own right. Even though, it has characters that they did not create but some writers have created their own characters to encounter such known characters like Batman. There is merit to fan-fiction and the biggest merit of all is that it builds community and it brings others together.

Now I will give one piece of advice when it comes to writing fan-fiction and that is know your subject, which means do your research. If you don’t know the world that you are writing about, then your piece will fail. When it comes publishing fan-fiction, the best piece of advice is change characters names and other details. Furthermore, it’s up to you if you want to share with readers that it’s fan-fiction or it’s an original idea.

On the last note, we as writers all have to start somewhere and if it’s with fan-fiction so be it. I mean I started with fan-fiction and I think that it’s one of the best things that ever came into my life.

I hope that you have found this helpful when thinking about the value of fan-fiction. I hope that you have a great writing day!

 

Romance Subgenre #5 – Erotic Romance

We end this week looking at the final popular subgenre that hit the mainstream a couple of years ago thanks to Fifty Shades of Gray. Here is the truth about this subgenre, you could only buy this subgenre in your bigger bookstores like Barnes and Noble and Borders and also they use to also hold these behind a glass case and at some retailers, you would be carded if you wanted to look at them before you purchased them. Fifty Shades of Grey changed all of that for this subgenre.

The other fact about this subgenre was that on the back cover there used to be a disclaimer that read something like this:

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Well, if you look at the erotic romances that come out today there is no more disclaimer and they can now be found at your local grocery stores.

The subgenre has come under the criticism of whether these types of book are porn or is it the details that are in the books that make them so racy. I would argue that the details in the sex scenes and their details in a regular romance novel and turns up the heat like to the really hot scale but I would not necessarily call them porn books.

Also, the love or attraction that are in a regular romance novel is somewhat thrown out the window is used to instead of focusing on the romance of a couple you are more focused on the sex that is in your novel and your character may have one or more partner. The biggest take away with erotic romance novels is that sex sells and the steamier the better, and just like any other romance novel can fall into a subgenre so can erotic romances for I have one that is fantasy-based.

This is a fun genre to read and sometimes fun to write if you are ever bored with writing regular romance novels and want to try something new write a few of these pages turners to see what you can achieve. But as always before diving head into this subgenre, I would suggest that you study the genre and then find a few test readers to see where they would the details in your book and if they would read it. The reason why I say test it out before publishing is that you want to find out if your book really falls into the subgenre. The last thing that you want is for your novel to be smacked with a porn label and that you take things too far. Granted, it will get the label anyway but you want it by critics not by the readers of your genre.