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Discussion Things fanfic does right

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Writing Resource' started by RK_Striker_JK_5, Oct 28, 2010.

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  1. ardavenport

    ardavenport Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 16, 2004
    What fanfiction does is give you more of what you like when it isn't available from the original source. There are so many Star Wars movies. So many episodes of TV shows, etc. That's where fanfiction moves in. :)

    And fanfiction is writing and reading. There are a lot worse things that people could do with their time.
  2. Earthknight

    Earthknight Jedi Padawan star 4

    Oct 3, 2002
    What hooks me is something new and fresh. Many times I read fan fics that very similiar to another and it loses me. For instance a romance tries to do a new pairing not done before, you have me hooked. A story that does a totally different plot. I'm hooked. I would love to see more fanfics that go boldly where none have gone yet.

    I also like stories that aren't afraid to take characters in new and sometimes dark directions.
  3. _ThatJediScum_

    _ThatJediScum_ Jedi Master star 3

    Jul 28, 2005
    What I love about fanfiction is that it can on in-depth about a particular subject or character or story and it does not have to be an all inclusive galaxy spanning epic. But I love it when fanfic writers do write all inclusive galaxy spanning epics because in fanfic there is the space and time necessary to write chapters upon chapters or create whole new sagas within The Saga.

    Fanfic is also great at jumping genres. Not every story has to be an action/adventure story. There are comedies, romances, horror stories, detective stories, character studies, fluff, crack!fic, and stuff that melds genres. I like reading those different types of stories because it's all Star Wars. I think most Stars War profic either can't or won't stray too far from a particular formula (which is kind of funny since the few authors that do stray from the formula end up becoming popular).

    I also love AUs and what ifs. As a reader it is so fun to explore what other fans think of the characters and situations we all know so well. And it is so much fun to take a look at what might have been or what could have been if something in the Saga was changed in some way.

    The other thing I think fanfic does so well is the fill in the blank years. I'm a huge prequel fan and Clone Wars era fan so I love reading fics that take place between the movies in the PT, and inter trilogy stories. I love when fics go into Anakin and Obi-wan's relationship, Anakin's training, Obi-wan and Anakin's early missions, and their growing relationship during the Clone Wars. I also love reading other fans' interpretation of life growing up in the Temple, life on Coruscant, Naboo culture, life under the Empire, life in the Imperial military, and even new planets and cultures other fans create and place into the universe.

    I love stories and I love to read so fanfic is so much fun for me because there are always new and different takes on situations and characters. And it is a really special feeling when you find a really well written story with a great plot and good characterizations.


  4. brodiew

    brodiew Jedi Master star 5

    Oct 11, 2005
    The thing I like most about fanfiction is that's it's not sanitized. What I mean by that is that profic has to appeal, for the most part, to the widest possible audience. Star Wars fans have some standardized expectations which profic also recognizes and fits into the stories they are wanting to tell. This is not a bad thing per se, but fan fiction allows authors to get specific with characterizations and tell more intimate, more funny, more personal stories.

    Also, in fan fiction, we are able to experience a wide variety of narrative styles. As no author is exactly like another, perspective(voice) becomes unique in telling stories.

    Carry on!
  5. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Jedi Grand Master star 9

    Mar 26, 2001
    I can't agree with you more, brodiew. That version of Star Wars is why I came to these boards in the first place.
  6. ardavenport

    ardavenport Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 16, 2004
    I don't think of the profic as being too 'sanitized' but I agree that it does have to appeal to a large enough audience to make it marketable. And the SW fanfic seems to be determine of somehow maintain consistency with earlier fanfic (written before the prequels were even written) which is really hopeless. The attempts at consistency sort of weakens the stories which are trying to cover up or explain things. And the profic seems to think that to get a bigger audience they need to make a bigger bang, more menacing bad guys and galaxy-wide crises that are more tedious than exiting.

    Fanfic doesn't have the limit of holding up the lost cause of consistency in the GFFA and the stories don't have to be bigger than the last. Smaller audience, but more interesting.
  7. anakin_girl

    anakin_girl Jedi Knight star 6

    Oct 8, 2000
    Great post. :)

    I also love Clone Wars-era stories and stories that take place between TPM and AOTC, stories that explore Anakin and Obi-Wan's friendship and Anakin's training. IMO there is a huge lack of pro-fic in these eras/genres, especially given the amount of post-ROTJ pro-fic that is available. Karen Miller's novels are outstanding but she only wrote three and from my understanding, does not plan to write anymore. As far as I know, the only pro-fic that explores Anakin's training at all is the Jedi Quest series, which I glanced through and didn't like; I learned later that Jude Watson does not like Anakin and has a hard time separating him from Darth Vader, which is probably why I did not like the series. In fan fiction, there are a greater number of us with different takes on/preferences for different characters, which allows for greater variety and exploration.

    I've read AUs based on "what if" situations that spin off from different parts of AOTC and ROTS, and wrote one myself. I love these; just the idea of taking seemingly small events and asking how the galaxy would change if this one event had been altered. That's something you won't find in pro-fic, because they have to at least loosely stick to existing canon. (I say "loosely" because if you go to Wookieepedia, several articles have disclaimers that say the Clone Wars series is giving information that conflicts with previously existing canon. Case in point: were Anakin's trials a year and a half post-Geonosis or a few weeks post? Depends on whether you ask Karen Miller or Dave Sherman.)
  8. RK_Striker_JK_5

    RK_Striker_JK_5 Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Jul 2, 2003
    One thing I love is all the myriad ways fanfic can go. It doesn't have to sell a product, so more chances can be taken.
  9. pronker

    pronker Jedi Master star 4

    Jan 28, 2007
    In addition to the above well-thought-out responses, I would add that fanfic lets me prune out the characters I'm not so interested in, while in profic I need to wade through their adventures/romances, what have you, in order to keep up with the *usually* a series of books.

    And the sheer imaginativeness of fanfic is fantastic --- AUs, mood pieces, humorous versions of even very serious scenes, such as the Duel of the Fates from TPM.
  10. serendipityaey

    serendipityaey Jedi Master star 4

    Jan 24, 2004
    I like the character development and layering and just being able to fill in this enormous galaxy. One thing I've noticed, especially about Rots, is it sometimes feels like a summary just to get to the end point - this happened, this happened, then this happened, then this happened, THEN they dueled and Padme gave birth and everyone died and see this is how we get to the OT. I constantly feel like we're coming in on a scene that already started and leaving before it's really finished but it does make it really interesting to take one bit from cannon and really develop someone's character based on one thing they said or did.

    And I love the originality the Star Wars universe fosters. There are just so many possibilities, I love being able to explore that through reading and writing fanfic.
  11. kayladie97

    kayladie97 Jedi Master star 4

    Jun 6, 2003
    THIS! So much this! I'm an unabashed Luke fan and one of the problems I have with profic is there's never enough Luke for me. :p With fanfic, I can pick and choose among so many stories that focus on Luke, or Luke and Mara, or Luke/Mara and Han/Leia. Those characters are why I love Star Wars to begin with and I can't get enough of them.

    Then there's the fact that fanfic writers seem to understand more about who these characters are, and I really think it's because we care about them more. We're doing this because we LOVE it, and profic writers (while I'm sure they love writing, or they wouldn't be writers in the first place) don't seem to have the passionate regard for the GFFA that so many fanfic authors do.
  12. serendipityaey

    serendipityaey Jedi Master star 4

    Jan 24, 2004
    I can't imagine doing something you don't LOVE, but I agree you definitely get that feeling from some of the profic. There's stuff that just completely contradicts what's already out there, and that drives me crazy.

    And I think that is the best thing about fanfic, being able to focus on what you love. Sometimes you only have time for a vignette!
  13. SilSolo

    SilSolo Jedi Knight star 5

    Mar 5, 2004

    Fanfiction, in most cases, improves people's writing skills.

    It's like a partially filled blank canvas and has a lot of room for creativity. It accomodates even larger fanbases than the original fandom because there are so many opportunities to create alternate version of the original series' canon.

    Reading good fanfiction, like most of the stuff that's posted on these boards, is great entertainment.
  14. SilSolo

    SilSolo Jedi Knight star 5

    Mar 5, 2004
    Upping this thread with a compliment to the JC forums in particular. One thing that I notice here is the high percentage of quality fanfiction compared to other places. They're generally all written in languages that I can read, free of errors, and don't have too many cliche things, such as placing SW characters in a high school. It's wonderful to see what people can do with a fantasy/sci-fi universe. Keep up the good work, writers. :D
  15. mrjop2

    mrjop2 Jedi Knight star 4

    Jun 6, 2007
    Same goes to the Non Star Wars Forum as well.
  16. leia_naberrie

    leia_naberrie Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 10, 2002
    There are so many great things about fanfic but off the top of my head, I'd say "Missing Scenes" and "Alternative Perspectives" right now.* An example of the former: a lot of <b>Fernwithy</b>'s fanon is my personal canon: "Father's Heart", "The Sanctuary Series", etc. There are some stories that have been retconned by the expanding universe, clone wars, etc. that are still hold on to. As for "alternative perspectives", that'll be more from the Harry Potter fandom, but I found out that a lot of fanfic about characters outside the hero's inner circle gave a shocking, brilliant and very insightful perspective in a lot of the actions and decisions that that the hero characters do and how the average, Jane-on-the-street would see them. Sort of sadly, a lot of my current antipathy towards the Harry Potter 'verse is based on what, in fandom circles, is known as Slytherfic... but I won't have it anyway. Being able to read about the story from the other guy (and not just sycophantic, "Draco-in-leather-pants" fics but fics that make you ask things like "did Hermione really have to lie about the troll?" or "Hagrid is a nice person... to Gryffindors... but is he and his obsession with dangerous pets really a safe person to teach children?" or "what is so gallant about torturing someone anyway?", etc.) really formed my critical aptitude and has influenced a lot of what I write now.

    *I'll definitely have more later.
  17. anakinfansince1983

    anakinfansince1983 Nightsister of Four Realms star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Mar 4, 2011
    I love missing scenes, reading them and writing them. In Star Wars, particularly with the prequels, there are a lot of gaps to fill in and a lot of room to write missing scenes. I also like to get inside a character's head and try to determine what he or she was thinking during a particular scene. The last write/rewrite challenge was great for this in asking the writer to get inside the head of a character whose perspective we normally don't see. Sadly I didn't have time to tackle it but I thought it was a great idea. I haven't read much Harry Potter fan fiction but I like the idea of the alternate point of view on Hagrid, whom we are told in canon that we are supposed to love. (Don't get me wrong, I do like him, but looking at him from another perspective is a good challenge.)
  18. Book-Geek

    Book-Geek Jedi Knight star 3

    May 28, 2011
    I love that with AU pieces, your favorite characters stay alive! [face_dancing]
  19. TrakNar

    TrakNar Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Apr 4, 2011
    Hey, can't go wrong with that! I also have to agree with the more personable aspects of fanfic, rather than the galaxy-spanning epic. Conflict and the risks involved become more important when they're in small stories set against a world (or galaxy) backdrop. Sure, there can be a war going on in the background, but much like the political and socio-economic episodes of TCW, I'm more interested in what's going on with the common man than I am what force is beating the crap out of what in the Outer Rim. How is that war affecting the other citizens? What do they think of it? Any ethical implications that could be touched upon? Every now and then, I see EU go into this aspect, but fanfics thrive around it.

    That and the opportunity to play around with the minor characters that are often overlooked in EU. It can be fun to get into their heads, poke around and see what makes them tick.
  20. JediBettyBug18

    JediBettyBug18 Jedi Youngling star 3

    Nov 13, 2005
    I like seeing character growth. The books don't address it. I'm a big EU person, and watching the YJK/JJK come of age in a war, I expected some deep personal reflection time. Maybe even a few break downs. You know? Show us they were still humans, and hormonal human teenagers at that ;)

    I also LOVE reading extremes. Extreme AU, extreme angst ( my fav :D ), etc etc.

    Other peeps' opinions on certain events are cool, too. I like reading an AU and thinking, "Glad to know I'm not the only one that thinks it should've happened *this* way...."

  21. ardavenport

    ardavenport Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 16, 2004
    Not sure if this is exactly a case of fanfic going right, but it at least went okay.....

    So, last month, I went to the World Science Fiction Convention in Reno. I had volunteered to be on some panels for costuming and science, and in the bio information I mentioned that I wrote media fan fiction that is posted on the internet. But I didn't check the list of panels carefully until I was packing and realized that the last line had me down for a reading. A reading???? It was too close to the convention to e-mail to ask them if they knew was 'media fanfiction' was.

    So, I printed up a few very short stories and I asked at the convention if they knew that I was going to be reading 'media fanfiction'. But nobody knew anything about it. So, on Saturday I read 'The Black Sith' and 'Mary-Q' to the six people who showed up and they liked them. But next time I'm going to look more carefully over what I volunteer for.[face_worried]

  22. Etain

    Etain Jedi Youngling star 3

    May 11, 2008
    It's putting clones into Clone Wars.:p
    Ever since the first season I was aghast about how little it was actually about clones. Fanfic does help there.

    In general, it gives charactedrs you like, but canon doesn't care for much, more screen time. -> happy fans :D
  23. DARTH_MU

    DARTH_MU Jedi Master star 4

    Feb 9, 2005
    I look for Dimensional Travelling and AU.

    As far as style goes, I look for good formatting.

    Such styles as

    BLah blah blah blah blah blah blah
    blah balh agjsdl;fjsdlf dsfjsdlfjsdlfj

    is an instant "close the window"

    I need these

    Blah blah blah blah, Blah said


    basically double spaced where as appropriate, punctuation, grammar, etc.

    And I realize that it's the nature of these boards, but If I have to read fifty lines of fanfic, and then scroll 500 lines of reviews made by 50 different people, and then read 1000 lines of fic, it's a total no no for me. again, I realize it's the nature of these boards, but just saying.

  24. LexiLupin

    LexiLupin Jedi Knight star 4

    Mar 27, 2011
    Ha yeah, I find that difficult too. I MUCH prefer reading fanfic on the ffnet site, but they don't really have good categorizing options over there. As I prefer stories in the 'Beyond' universe, I have to scroll through tons of Anakin/Obi-wan/Padme stories to find much of anything (and there isn't much to begin with these days). But it is really frustrating, especially if you find an old story that is already completed and commented and you JUST want to read the story, but have to go through tons of pages of just reviews and back-and-forth chatting to find the next chapter.
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