mariposa wrote:Tell me - what on earth is FANFIC? It seems like a pretty big thing on here!
Fan Fiction (shortened to "fanfic") is fiction written by fans, based on existing material. Modern fan fiction has its roots in Science Fiction media fndom of the 1970s (both in the US and the UK), but it's actually a very old tradition. Think of it like the 21st cetury version of the Baker Street Irregulars writing Holmes stories based on Doyle's canon, or the 12 century Arthurian legends that tell and retell stories in Wales, Britian, and France.
Same exact deal (writing new material based on existing canon, adding to the canon, reinterpreting the canon, bringing new points of view to old stories and characters, etc.), only instead of publishing it in fanzines, distributed through the post or at conventions the way we did in the 1980s, most writers these days post stories on the internet to archives or Usenet newsgroups.
Basically, if you've ever read Gregory Maguire's _Wicked_, then you've read fan fiction. It's just that Baum's original novels are now in the public domain, so no IP laws are broken
Same delio with "Hamlet" and "Rosencrantz and Guildernstern Are Dead".
Fanfic is still a mostly underground phenomenon, and a lot of the new generation of writers write as a social activity in their teens. So not all of them actually writers because they're interested in the craft of writing and becoming better storytellers, but as a way to tell stories just to amuse themselves and their friends. So it's become very popular among young people online, the last 10 years or so. Hence the ENORMOUS sample size, and signal:noise ratio which means finding quality stories can be a challenge.
I'm a sad old gaffer--been writing since the late 1980s, used to edit 'zines, run listservs, all that old school fandom stuff. And a lot of my friends write professionally--either for television, or writing original novels and short stories--in addition to writing fan fiction.
In a world full of Uma Thurmans, everyone has an inner Janine Garafolo who needs to be taken out dancing every once in a while.