So earlier this week, my twitter account updated with information about an upcoming movie that had just cast a director. The movie was based on a book that I had not read… but I had read the fan fiction story that novel had been based on.
Yes. I read fan fiction.
I love to read. Before 3G, rampant wifi and constant access to the internet, I had books stashed everywhere. I would spend my lunches reading (I still do this). I would get in trouble in math class for reading and would hide books during class. Even books assigned in school stimulated me. Fahrenheit 451, Catcher in the Rye, The Scarlet Letter, Their Eyes Were Watching God, Of Mice and Men, Pygmalion… My love affair with the works of Shakespeare was ridiculous and I would even cut school to see the films playing. I turned my nose up to the 1970 version of Wuthering Heights we were made to watch in school because it was so far off the original. I read anything I could get my hands on, anything that was recommended. It didn’t matter if I hated it, I had to finish it all the way to the end.
And then I discovered fan fiction.
This was bad news. I would already read three novels at a time and stay up all night to finish them. I kept multiple copies of the ones I loved, made friends through online book clubs and then someone recommended a story to me, already completed, with characters I had already been aquainted with and I was hooked.
I would stay up at all hours of the night reading about characters I was already familiar with in alternative universes and strange situations, sometimes younger, sometimes richer and never ever the same and I loved it.
It’s one of my deep dark secrets. I can count on one hand the number of people that know I read this stuff. One I admitted to only after a a dinner involving lots of wine and then she admitted she wrote it!
Before anyone scoffs, these stories are all written about characters, not real people. They are familiar characters on new journeys. It’s the equivalent to watching “Blood: The Last Vampire” the original cartoon movie, “Blood Plus” the cartoon series and “Blood: The Last Vampire” the live action film. All about the same girl but in different timelines and trials. It’s essentially the same concept as rebooting a series or movie, sometimes it works (The Thomas Crown Affair setting the chess scene aside) and sometimes, not so much (House of Wax. Who thought they could improve on Vincent Price?)
Also, if anyone has seen, read or heard about the “The Mortal Instruments” series then you need to know that the author, Cassandra Clare, got her start writing Harry Potter fan fiction.
Some of it can be awful, some can be wonderful and some of these authors are putting it out there to hone their writing skills.
So before anyone makes fun of anyone for reading these or writing these, they should think twice. I’m not saying it isn’t a little silly, but it sure can be a lot of fun.
“I write stargate fanfiction so I think I know what i’m talking about” – Hot Tub Time Machine