Ahoy! I've been around the boards for a while, read a TON of fan fiction, looked at lots of pretty art, and wrote/drew some of my own. I'm currently studying for a Masters in [link=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_anthropology]Anthropology[/link] in [link=http://www.nuim.ie]NUI Maynooth[/link], and will be starting my research year in September. This is where all of you guys come in. I want to do some of my fieldwork here, looking at fan fiction writers and fan artists both. So, some info. Quoting from my proposal: "This project centres around reality and creativity, the ways in which people construct and interact with different realities, as well as the ways in which they use this process. I am interested in how realities are created and interacted with, and the uses to which they are put. The project will look at several theories on the nature of reality and creativity's, specifically literature's, influence on it. I want to explore the ways in which realities might be developed in resistance or opposition to each other, as well, and how these realities provide a setting in which people may explore and express emotions, thoughts and ideas that their dominant reality does not enable them to go into." Basically, I'm interested in WHY people write fan fiction, and WHAT they do with it. I love the idea that SW fandom creates this kind of separate reality in which people can interact and which people can actually build up further through fan fiction, art, games, etc. I'm hoping to combine actual fieldwork with more philosophical treatments of reality, creativity and imagination. I think it's fascinating how people "get into the head" of a particular character, how they come up with stories, what these stories come to mean to people, and so on. Fan fiction seems to be this incredibly creative, productive part of fandom, and I'm really interested in writing as it is, so it seemed like a good area to focus on. If you have any thoughts on this, or any input, I'd really welcome it. And I'd really appreciate it if anyone is interested in chatting to me about this stuff--feel free to use this thread for discussion! Why do you write fan fiction, how do you come up with stories? What's your favourite type of fan fic to write, who're your favourite characters to write about, etc? Any thoughts on the whole "constructing reality" deal--whether you agree or disagree--are welcome too. So yeah. I'd really love to hear from you. Feel free to link me to something you've written, as well, or something someone else wrote that you really like. I'll be sure to read it and leave a review. I'm not going to go around with surveys or anything--anthropological fieldwork is great in that I get to just chat to people about a subject that they're interested in, hang around with them, and see what they do. Some technical info: We're pretty much obliged to change everyone's names if we mention them in our thesis, which includes usernames, so anyone quoted will be anonymous like that. I will also ask express permission before quoting someone. I'll make my finished thesis available for people to read, if anyone is interested. Likewise, if anyone wants to know more, I can make my proposal available as well, I just didn't want to clutter this post up with potentially boring ramblings. Right, I think that's it. As I said, I'd love to hear from you. Even if you don't write yourself and just like reading--that's cool as well. Go for it!