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David Hines [userpic]

working my way through folks' recs...

March 7th, 2012 (07:19 pm)
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And it's interesting. A lot of stuff doesn't work for me, which is okay and was expected, but one reason I asked folks to provide current recs is because I wanted to see to what degree my sense of what fandom was writing was more or less representative. I was surprised to find that it was a lot more representative than I'd expected, in terms of the kind of things folks are writing. I didn't see any *kind* of fiction that struck me as really new. The surprise comes because, in my nineteen-odd years in fandom, I've seen fanfic change quite a bit. When I started, fanfic was mostly gen; you had slash and porn, but it was much less common and was confined to dedicated forums, which was still an increase for that stuff over earlier years. RPF used to be completely anathema, but then became accepted and wildly common (my sense is that it really took off with bandom, because it would be hard to write anything but, but I don't know LOTR fandom at all and I know RPF was *huge* over there, so that might've been where the change occurred -- timelines, anybody?). Fandoms used to start off writing the more gen stuff, and then start to collect more porn and slash as they grew older, whereas now folks come home from the theater and start a kink meme. Fandom used to just write about the pretty white boys, and now fandom still mostly writes about the pretty white boys but there are chromatic challenges and more calls for representation from fans of color. And so on.

Lately, though, I haven't seen fanfic change as much. The change I keep expecting to see is more female-character-focused fic, but while there's been more in recent years it's still lagged behind what I've been thinking I'd see, given feminist fandom's increasing activism. To me, the biggest change in recent years is the increasing prominence of flashfic, with kink memes. But that doesn't seem to have changed the type of things that folks are writing so much as it's changed length. The recent popularity of texting fic is interesting, but I don't know how much of a change it represents. With tumblr, fannish activity has changed -- the popularity of fannish memes is a new kind of fannish activity all its own -- but this still hasn't changed the kinds of stories folks seem to be writing. Fanfic is wildly popular, and it's in more places than ever, but I don't know if it's still changing. Or if it's on a path to being subsumed by something else.

So is fanfiction in stasis? What do y'all think?

Originally posted on my DW. | comment count unavailable people have commented there. | Do so yourself, if you like.

Comments

Posted by: boogieshoes (boogieshoes)
Posted at: March 9th, 2012 12:09 am (UTC)

fanfic is like the sea: ever changing, and ever unchanging. it is.

-bs

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