The Sunday Salon: The Practice of Fanfiction

You may have heard of Fifty Shades of Grey, the first installment of an erotica trilogy that began life as the alternate universe Twilight fanfic Master of the Universe. For fans, it’s a story that’s both delightful in the sheer amount of drama involved and a bit troubling in how visible it’s making a piece of fanfiction, considering the possible legal repercussions. For non-fans, it’s a story of a fan turning pro. But there was one particular non-fan’s reaction that intrigued me. Over the last week, Jason Boog, the editor of GalleyCat, has covered the story for both GalleyCat and NPR. Both pretty much ask the same question—“Will the success of Fifty Shades of Grey inspire more fan fiction writers to convert their work into straight fiction?” (In fact, the NPR piece assumes that “James’ success will undoubtedly spawn a wave of repurposed fan-fiction erotica in the coming months”.)

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Booking Through Thursday: Fan Fiction

Have you every written any fanfiction? If yes, why and for which book(s)? If no, would you like to and for which books(s)?

For that matter, do you ever READ fanfiction?

Oh, of course! Not for books, unless the Little Women AU in my head counts. But I’m from fandom, and I’ve written plenty for movies, television shows, and video games. (No links—I try to keep my fannish life and real life neatly separated.)

I’m always looking for good Little Women fanfiction starring Jo and Laurie, but I’m always up for good Sherlock Holmes fic or a good The Chronicles of Narnia addressing the problem of Susan. (I don’t like how Gaiman did it.) Really, I’ll read anything as long as I’ve read the source and the fanfic has been recommended.

And yes, of course I read fanfiction. I keep ’em on my phone to read if I don’t feel like reading my digital book. And I’d like to point out that fanfiction is a much broader category than you might think. I refer you to Aja Romano’s brilliant post, “I’m done explaining why fanfiction is okay“, which points out how works based on other works have been around since the dawn of time (Paradise Lost counts!) and are perfectly capable of being fantastic enough to win the Pulitzer. In short—my favorite fanfic is Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead.