When I started my new job a few months ago (gosh has it really been that long already?) I was asked “So what do you do in your spare time?”. Immediately I answered with “I write, mostly” which ended up in a rather embracing and sputtering conversation about what “I write” meant, exactly. I honestly don’t know why I suddenly found myself blushing like a schoolgirl and unable to say “I write fanfics”. Surely it isn’t that embarrassing a thing to be doing now, Is it?
I’ve been writing fanfics for as long as I can remember, I used to act out scenes and make up my own OC’s in my head during school, fantasizing about being one of the Sailor Scouts, leaping around in indecently short skirts in that way that only the Sailor Senshi can manage. I think it was then that I realised that none of my friends shared this rabid fan mentality that I had developed. I remember one day when my friends found some theme tune song lyrics I had copied out into my school planner, they had never heard of the shows and I was so embarrassed that they picked up on that immediately. They teased me for days.
Then as I grew older my fan focus changed and I made the leap from making up stories in my head to committing them on paper. It wasn’t long before I found myself on Fanfiction.net, publishing my very first story in what would become one of the biggest anime fandoms I have ever seen in my life. Yup, I wrote a Dragonball Z fanfic. <insert groan here>
I was using a different pen name back then but the story is still up there, tho it hasn’t been reviewed in years. I found myself falling for one very specific sub-fandom within this army of fangirls and boys, scouring the internet for any additional DBZ fix they could get. Yes, I wrote what is commonly referred to as a B/V. Quite possibly the most popular and widely written couple in all of fandom (And no, I do not have any statistics). My story, “Second chances” got some very good reviews and, I am pleased to say, no flames that I can remember. Except for one person who asked a question after reading half way through the story that was answered in the very next chapter. This person I did not reply to as any reply that could have been sent would have amounted to “Errm, try reading this bit here.”
I left it at that for years, simply writing the odd story on my computer and saving into the wasteland that was my external hard drive, never to see the light of day. Instead of posting, I read everything I could in the B/V universe. I don’t think there is a well written fic out there that I didn’t read.
And then I found my true fandom.
When I first saw Megamind, on a DVD I stole from my brother, I watching it twice in one day. And then every day for the next few weeks. I know it by heart, I grinned manically at the “Temptress scene” and then laughed myself into oblivion when I watching it again and saw Minion’s face. I sat there listening in fascination to the director’s commentary, seeing things that I would never have noticed, shouting at them for spending so much time on the ‘continuity’ of Metroman being in the evil lair for a split second behind megamind, but not making sure the blue man’s expression matched during the flashback scene later on in the movie.
Aaaand then, I found the fandom. And WOW! I have read most of the fics on ff.net now, except for the ones who’s writing style would grate too much on my nerves. Not that I’m snobbish but there are some basic rules to writing that people should follow. I know my spelling is terrible and my grasp of grammar is basic at best but sentence and paragraph structure when writing in English is a staple and should always be followed. Having said that I have never really been one to shout at someone for writing in a way I do not like. I simply don’t read it. Other people will and other people will like it, no one needs me leaving a nasty review saying “This looks terrible, go back to school.”
And now, I am the author of…god knows how many fics now, written in both first and third person. I now have two plot bunnies biting my ankles, the larger of the two is the one for Complicated Simplicity, which is going amazingly well. I can’t believe I have had so many reviews so quickly! The other story, “Whatever you are, be a good one” is on hold but it is still bubbling away, I am re-editing the whole story as it has degenerated into a “And this happened and then this and thins AND then THIS goes horribly wrong…” and so on. I’m being very careful to interlace emotional monologuing and character development into the chapters between the ‘stuff blowing up’ and the ‘hanky panky’.
So why do I find something I enjoy so much so embarrassing? Maybe for the same reason I write and post under a pen name. This is part of OAG’s life, it is her on-line existence that revolves around this universe. Out in the real world I’m just a girl still living with her parents, working a job selling outdoor clothing (If any of you have ever phoned in to buy Bear Grylls clothing you might have talked to me). Maybe I have some kind of split personality. But then maybe I’m over thinking this a bit too much.
I tend to do that.