Sometimes, being a fangirl isn’t easy.
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My local meetup group held a fanwork rec meetup where we all brought our favorite fanfic, fanart, fanvids, wizard rock, and more. Here’s what my group came up with with links wherever possible.
The Harry Potter Alliance has a new campaign up and running right now called FAN WORKS ARE FAIR USE. It seems to be a way to promote creativity inspired by tv/book/movie/game canon and the benefits that fanworks provide. And the idea is to promote their classification as fair use.
“We believe that fan works provide tremendous value to the people who create and enjoy them.”
“We believe that fan works add value to the source materials on which they’re based. “
As a fanfiction writer, I like the idea in general. But it’s a tough gray line to walk when you’re dealing with characters that were originally created by other writers and artists.
“Fan Works Are Fair Use is a community of fan creators, readers, artists, and enthusiasts who are committed to the protection and preservation of fair use law. We also seek to eliminate negative stigmas about fanfiction, fan art, and other fan creations and legitimize such works in the eyes of mainstream media.”
I’m interested to see where it goes from here.
Last year, I put together a list of Top Ten Favorite Het Fandom Couples. And of course I wrote a list of Top Ten Harry Potter Ships I Can’t Believe I Wrote. So I thought it was about time to make a list of my favorite slash couples in Harry Potter. These are the ones I read & write most often.
One of my coworkers sent me this story this week: The Poet Laureate of Fan Fiction. As usual, I’m always the last to hear interesting news.
“I hope readers find meaning in my work. Even if that meaning slides away from my intention.”
In this case, it’s the story of poetry used to inspire Wincest and Johnlock fanfic. Now, I believe in my fellow slashers’ ability to read slash into anything, because I do the same thing. There’s a Byron poem or two that I’m convinced tell the story of Remus/Sirius pretty damn well. But this is the first time I’ve ever read about a poet not only acknowledging this interpretation but apparently having fun with it. Richard Siken has some things to say about it.
“So how do we respect an original work while we aggregate around it?”
I really enjoy seeing literary discussions of fanfiction, but those discussions never seem to discuss slashfic. So I found this discussion especially fascinating. There’s a lot in here that makes you think about the nature of fanfic, which I think is lovely and healthy, even if I don’t agree with all of it.
“I think my poems enact a space for complicated, multivalent relationships. I think that’s the draw.”
In general, this article just made me happy… and a little sad that this was the first I’d heard of it! Clearly I write too much in my own little communities and don’t venture out enough. And, clearly, I’ve got some poetry that I need to read soon. So far, I especially like “Road Music.”
“I read somewhere that “Siken ships harder than the entire fandom,” so I decided to ship intentionally.”
And maybe I have some more slash fanfic to write in my future? What am I saying? Of course I do.
The year is half over, so I thought it time to evaluate my fanfiction writing progress. I didn’t participate in the annual Harry Potter challenge in May that I’ve done for ten years now, which is sad. But I’m running my own fest in the spring now and it’s been quite pleasant not to have to worry about both at the same time.
I’ve written a whole lot of fanfic over the years. Here are the top ten obscure fandoms in which I’ve written fanfic. In fact, for each of these, I’ve only written one fanfic (and will never write another, in most cases)
Okay, not really a top ten… just a selection of ten favorites from my button/pin collection (which I keep in an old shortbread tin shaped like a kilt that sits on the pass-through from my kitchen to living room/dining area… which is possibly not where most people keep their collections of buttons/pins, now that I think about it). Note to self: do more top ten lists this way.
Draco and the Malfoys released a new single today and the promise of their first new studio album in almost five years. I’ve only listened to the single six times now There’s something so thrilling about the prospect of new Wizard Rock. I don’t like to say that it’s dead, because art doesn’t ever die. But it certainly isn’t as popular as once it was. Only a couple touring groups came to my town last year, for example.
You know we would all cheat to win.”
Cheat to Win isn’t necessarily my style, musically, but I really like it. It’s catchy and, well, speaks a bit of truth. I’m a rule-following Hufflepuff. Not all Hufflepuffs are as anal about rules as I am, but I hold the concept of fairness to all above almost everything else in this world (note to self: remember to grab that Nelson Mandela book out of the car before the next snow/ice storm hits tonight). So, no, I would NOT cheat to win at most things. But if it’s a matter of cheating or dying, heck year I’m going to choose cheating. But it brings up the question: why do I like this song so much, even if the underlying Slytherin concept in it is against the core of who I am as a person?
We’re really good kissers, but I must warn we bite.”
~Swish and Flick, SLY in Slytherin
And it’s not just this song, either. I’m completely guilty of jumping up and down and shouting “Gryffindor” at Ministry of Magic concerts when Gryffindor Rally Cry is played. I could not have bought Swish and Flick’s album fast enough and I listen to its Slytherin songs far more than the Hufflepuff in me is willing to admit. So, yeah, my WRock playlist has its fill of JFF and Oliver Boyd songs. But you’ll also find Draco & the Malfoys and the Parselmouths popping up just as often. Why is that?
I’m more pure than you’ll ever contemplate
There’s no denying fate.
You’re just jealous about my purpose.
It’s not my fault that your blood
Leaves you second-rate.”
One of the things I like most about fan creations is getting to see someone else’s interpretation and passion for something I love. We all come at fandom with a shared understanding of canon. But the way individuals and fanon interpret it is not just fascinating but appealing to me. I love reading fanfic that shows me a brand new angle on characters I already love. I love going to meetup discussions with people who have different thoughts, viewpoints, and interpretations. And I adore fandom music that makes me feel different things. Most WRock is just plain fun–not deep, not life-changing. And I have a special place in my heart for the music that speaks right to me, completely in-line with my thoughts and favorite things about the characters and story. But when a song is actually able to convert me for 2-5 minutes into another person, to let me see things from a different point of view, and to let me rejoice in some of the values I don’t even share, that’s true magic right there.
This was, possibly, my easiest year doing NaNoWriMo. I struggled last year to make my word count, but last year I was playing by the rules and this year I did NaNoRebel again–so much more pleasant and enjoyable!
I really only wrote during 16 days or so this year. And some of those days I only wrote somewhere between a dozen and a thousand words. If you look at my bar chart, you can see my daily progress, or lack thereof. Much different from last year’s, when one of my goals was to write at least 500 words every single day.
During the handful of write-ins I attended on various Fridays and Mondays, I got several thousand words written. But my big accomplishments were on Sundays. I didn’t do much of anything but stay in my PJs and write every Sunday in November, so you can see the huge leaps in word count on those days. Then I didn’t write much during the following week. Those were big writing days, where I did a lot of work, but it really feels to me like I managed to get through November only writing for a few days in total and hitting 50,000 words naturally, without much effort at all.
During the final week of November, I worked on:
- BBC Sherlock fanfiction- finished the story I started earlier in the month. It turned out pretty good, I think.
- YA Paranormal Novel- I started a difficult moment in the story and it’s stalled a little bit. But I’m still feeling good about how much I got written in this novel and I look forward to continuing to work on it next year.
- Marvel Big Bang Fanfic- I got past the 15,000 word mark on it and came up with a bunch of great scenes. I’m still not feeling it as a full story yet, but I’m getting closer. I think I need to take all the scenes, put them on index cards, and figure out what needs to be filled in to make it a complete story.
Congrats to all the other winners out there and everyone who even attempted NaNoWriMo. It’s still more words written than you had when you started!