By: Sam Lundy
Fanfiction…so how do I write it?
Writing fanfiction isn’t just taking a story you enjoy and writing a continuation. Here are some steps to help you with the writing process.
- Research– Oh yes, this is necessary. Just like with an academic paper you will need to check your facts. This may mean re-reading a book or an entire series over and over to make sure that your story doesn’t conflict with the original. You don’t want to include a character that may have died or write about something that isn’t even possible because it completely contradicts what the original author wrote. You have to be thorough. One way to do this is get onto forums. Living in the digital age, the internet allows fans to have communities online, use these to your advantage. Look at the discussions other fans are having in forums. What are they talking about that seems interesting? Should it be included? What is something that fans hate when done in fanfiction? What should you avoid? Reading through these online communities can be very helpful in creating your own story.
- Workshop– That should be a given, right? That is not always the case. Many times fanfiction writers just post their work online, which is great, but it should be looked at first. Your piece should be looked at by two types of people. A novice and an expert. Why a novice? A novice isn’t going to have a bias view towards holes in characters or the plot. They can be open and honest, but as a writer who knows so much about the subject, you must stay open to this criticism. Consulting an expert is going to allow you some fact-checking insight. Did you miss something in your research? Does this relationship between certain characters make sense? Having your work looked at is always a gift because it not only helps you as a writer fix your piece, but it lets you see something that you may have missed before.
- Have Fun! – Fanfiction is taking a world you love and putting it into your own hands, so enjoy what you are doing. Make this a creative outlet for yourself. You might even find inspiration for an original story in your writing.
As a whole, fanfiction is something that isn’t just babbling online about what if Harry hadn’t killed Voldemort, or if the tenth doctor’s clone and Rose lived happily ever after. This is the world that you love and you are making it your own, and only you can make something great come out of it.