In order for fans to feel closer to their favorite series, some choose to don a pen and paper or spread their fingers across a keyboard and start crafting a new story to commemorate their fandom.
According to Tech Times, fan fiction has been around for decades. Since the internet has become more prevalent in households, people have started reading and writing these stories at a young age. Some members of fan culture groups on campus have been involved in the community for years.
Aliza Ali, a junior studying biological sciences pre-med and world religions, has been reading and writing fan fiction since she was 12 years old. As a kid, she was a big fan of the Harry Potter series and Marvel comics.
Ali enjoys writing stories that “stay true to the characters.”
Many different elements can change in fan fiction stories from the originals, such as placing characters in alternative universes. Somehow stories are still able to make sense outside of the confines of the original world, Ali said. She added that, “the core of fan fiction comes from the characters.”
It is easier for Dayna White, a sophomore studying electrical engineering, to write fan fiction stories rather than new narratives because she will not have to create her own “characters and situations.”
Often times, fan fiction writers may craft stories based off of prompts from their fans on social media. In Ali’s earlier days, she would write crossovers, which are works that combine two different plots into one storyline. One example of her crossovers is when she added Nick Jonas into the Harry Potter setting after an online fan asked her to do so. Another source of fan prompts is Tumblr, where members can post random prompts for any fanfic author to pick up.
When people hear the words "fan fiction," they often associate it most with slash fiction. According to L.A. Weekly, that genre of fan fiction is any fictional piece that depicts intimacy between two characters of the same sex.
“(It’s) a great way for the viewers to express relationships that would have existed if there wasn’t such a negative stigma on homosexuality,” Ali said, “A lot of characters ... are inherently connected to each other in a way that if one of them were female, they will have had some sort of relationship.”
The public opinion toward fan fiction can differ. Some people consider those stories to be on the same level as other forms of literature while others feel they are not to be taken seriously.
Last Friday, Donkey Coffee and Espresso put on the 2nd annual Fan Fiction Night which was presented by Blue Pencil Comedy. Several readers shared their parodies of fan fiction with a paying audience.
Rachel Bishop, a freshman studying commercial photography, attended Fan Fiction Night to provide moral support for a few of her friends that were reading.
Some of the readers seemed to be familiar with Blue Pencil Comedy’s events. Colette Audax, a junior studying screenwriting, was inspired by the comedy at the first Fan Fiction Night to write her own story about the pairing of Batman and Bob Ross.
There was blatant sexual humor included in first story which described the sexual interaction between Gary Johnson and the Pillsbury Doughboy in extreme detail.
Within the first story, people were already warming up to the outright erotic humor. Half of the characters people wrote about were well-known political figures. Kathleen Cook, a freshman studying wildlife and conservation biology, enjoyed a fan fiction about Nancy Reagan and Knuckles from Sonic the Hedgehog.
Jordan Wooster, an undecided freshman, was “pleasantly surprised” at what she witnessed at the Fan Fiction Night.
“(It’s) interesting to see how different people react to different series and what they think should have happened,” White said.