Miranda Prescott, Arts & Entertainment Correspondent
You would be lying to yourself if you said that you have never heard of a small concept known as fanfiction. Or, rather, you would be a human being who does not geek out over book characters or television shows. So, rather, you would be a normal person with a normal life.
For those who love the previously mentioned activity, fanfiction is a wonderous world where people who call themselves “aspiring authors” write the same plot line that at least 500 other authors have done before, using someone else’s characters from major works. They do this because, normally, they can’t create more than five characters for their given plotline on their own. I should know. I was a fanfiction writer.
The keyword there is “was.”. I finally quit around 2015, after spending four years of my life doing such activities. However, I’ll check in from time to time to see how everything is going in the communities I once wrote under. In my illustrious career as a fanfiction writer, I noticed three main types of writers that I feel sum up the idea of fan fiction quite nicely.
“The Almost Novelist”
This is the type of writer that writes so well that their story could possibly, in some cases, be better than the story they have modeled theirs after. This archetype, surprisingly, has allowed many major authors today to have a platform to create their own works, mostly. Some authors today use their fanfiction to create original works. I’m pointing at you, E.L. James. You are the perfect example of this type of fan fiction writer.
“The ‘Insert Self Here’ writer”
This writer is found mostly in fanfiction written about real-life celebrities. One Direction, BTS, you name it. The reason they are found here is because they like to insert themselves into their own stories. These writers use their work to live the dream of being with Harry Styles. They are also probably the most common type of writer you will see. Mainly because if you ever read fanfiction, you are probably reading stories like these. Some writers will even let you fill in the blank. Like Mad Libs, but slightly more awkward because these scenarios are with real people in fictional settings.
This is the writer that absolutely makes no sense. Their storyline is all over the place, and their descriptions of things are incoherent and they improperly use the right words in them. Characters jump in and get killed off at random. When they speak, the characters often cannot even say words properly. And do not get me started on the plotline of these stories. More than likely, this writer is of ages 14 or less and have no idea how the world really works. For laughs, I often investigate these types of stories, and I immediately add at least 10 years to my lifespan while doing so.
Sure, there are more types of fanfiction writers out there, but these three are the ones everyone has probably ran into more than once or twice while scrolling through websites dedicated to this valuable art form. Now, is all fanfiction bad? Not really, but it is slightly illegal in some context. Thankfully, fair use does indeed exist.