Jan. 18th, 2017

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Day 15

"Write a love letter to Fandom in general, to a particular fandom, to a trope, a relationship, a character, or to your flist/circle/followers. Share you love and squee as loud as you want to."

Okay, catching up on the last day of the Snowflake Challenge...

I've been trying to think of something non-cliché-sounding to say to this, but I'm not really sure what that would be, and if I spend any more time thinking about it, I'll never get to actually doing it. (My usual method of approach!) So I'll just do the cliché stuff and you'll have to forgive me. :-)

Fandom's given me new friends all over the world. Fandom came out of nowhere (I literally didn't even know fanfiction existed until I discovered it a few years ago – can you imagine?) and introduced me to all these little (and not so little) pockets of kind, caring, supportive people who are passionate about things and about sharing those interests with each other. I know there are also parts of fandom that put each other down and have shipping wars and are needlessly hurtful to each other – I've been lucky not to stumble into those. The people I've met have been lovely.

Fandom has been such an amazing place to practice writing and grow as a writer. I never would have written hundreds of thousands of words over the last couple of years if I'd been just trying to pull together the motivation to work on original writing projects, in isolation, for some theoretical future audience. Fandom and fanfic means a built-in, already-existing community, and that means motivation to write – because someone will actually see it. And that means that I write, and writing is how I get better as a writer.

And fandom provides community. This was really driven home to me over the past couple of weeks, with the airing of BBC Sherlock series 4. I love the Sherlock characters, I love(d) the show they came from, but I do not love almost anything about how the showrunners have written their own show for the last few years. (I think it's a hot mess of out-of-control ego and incompetence, actually!) And yet I still watched the new series, partly because I do care about these characters, but in large part because I feel involved and invested in the fandom. I'm so done with the show, but I still love the brilliance, caring, cleverness and heart of the people who came together around the show.

And that is the power of fandom.


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September 2017


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