What are your thoughts and experiences with writing and reading fanfiction?
I write fanfiction (mostly short stories) whenever I’m inspired with an idea–either a parody or an interesting scenario. Most of my recent stories have been inspired by a jewelry piece. And I don’t plan most of those stories–they appear suddenly and demand that I wait to post the jewelry until I’ve finished writing the story.
The Loki staff necklace was a birthday present for my sister, so I was inspired to write a story where Loki steals the flying aircraft carrier as a birthday present for himself. For the evil snitch necklace, I wrote a few paragraphs about Draco Malfoy learning of a deadly change to the rules of Quidditch. The last one was mostly for myself. I was miffed at how the Star Wars Old Republic franchise took the storyline from the last game to the MMORPG. So I fixed it.
I occasionally read fanfiction if I have an idea it will be good–either from a recommendation or a well-written pitch from the author.
Two I’m enjoying right now:
Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality
Aunt Petunia married a math professor instead of Uncle Vernon, and Harry Potter is raised as a scientist by a loving family. When he gets to Hogwarts, he brilliantly combines magic and science while lamenting the lack of rational thinking among wizards…and that’s not nearly half the reason this is one of the best stories I’ve ever read.
Ensign Sue Must Die
The origin of the term “Mary Sue” was a character in a Star Trek fanfiction. So this fancomic starts with Old Spock warning Reboot Spock about Reboot Mary Sue. Once she shows up, the exasperated crew tries to figure out how to get rid of her. (As an added bonus, the sequel features the Tenth Doctor and Benedict Cumberbatch’s Sherlock.)
Speaking of Mary Sues, what are your thoughts? (I can hardly blog about fanfiction without mentioning them, right?)
I think an overpowered character with an overdramatic past/origin can be redeemed if they’re given flaws, an interesting personality, and if they’re challenged properly. If the average superhero appeared in a novel, he/she would probably be classified as a Mary Sue if , but what makes comic books balance out is the addition of the supervillain.