May 5th, 2010

pride of reading

The Time Has Come to Talk of Many Things: Genre, The Internet & Stories

Okay, so I keep meaning to do a post on genre. But this is not that post, though it is related.

So, Diana Gabaldon has said she really hates fanfiction. Diana Gabaldon is the author of two serieses of books which I have read, one series about a time-travelling lady called Claire who meets a handsome Scotsman and has excellent adventures she gets through via her medical expertise and true love, and one series about an English gentleman soldier called Lord John who keeps stumbling into mysteries and espionage and has to solve them with his stubborn sense of honour and occasional lapses from being polite into berserker rage. (PS Lord John is gay, always nice to see a main character who just is without that being the central point of the narrative, sometimes. Because people just are.) I like both serieses very much.

Having explained Diana Gabaldon, I will now explain fanfiction! I see I have already handily explained it in my FAQ section on my website.

Q: What do you think of fanfiction (stories on the internet which are based on your books)? Can I write some if I want?

A: I think fanfiction is very cool. It’s a way to have fun, be imaginative and practise your writing. And if you want to write some based on my books, I’ll be very flattered and pleased: you have my permission to go right ahead. I can’t read it, because that can get writers into nasty legal situations, and you’re not allowed make money off it. Otherwise go right ahead!

So, stories on the internet that are based on people's books. (Or movies. Or TV shows. I don't have either of those things, though.) Apparently I would be so pleased to have fanfiction of my stuff that I said 'go right ahead' twice.

Stories about other people's stories. Well, I've written those. Lots of people who love stories have, I think: it's a really natural thing to do, out of our emotional response of love for that work.

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