Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Vcon 2012 coming, and a rant on fanfics

Long time no blog, huh? VCON is just over a week away, and I'll be there again! No new novel this year, but that's the price of double fatherhood. Thankfully Caitlin's started (full time french immersion) kindergarten, so with Lachlan still enjoying long naps, I have some time to write again! And here I am blogging. Erf.

Anyway, I'm hyped for VCON, and revving to get it on! On top of my boosk, I'll also be selling some of a friend's 'charms' that she makes, and are awesome. I think she wants to test out the market of VCON I've seen her stuff at other events she's been at.. but for VCON, she'll be making some aimed at the VCON crowd, and maybe a few with my books in mind! (Since... y'know, I have a few hundrend pics of the Lifehack gals hanging around...)

In other news, a reported called out for opinions on fanfics. I went a little off base on what they may have been hunting for, but I sent them this:

As a minor author, I never wrote fanfics.. but I'm old; an ancient 36. Fanfics weren't a 'thing' when I was a teen. I'm a little bit split on the notion of fanfic in general.

On one hand, it's a 'safety blanket' of a familiar worlds and characters, where emerging writers can get their feet wet, and hone their skills. and that's great. Maybe. There's a time to dump other people's characters*, and step out into your own voice. If you can create a setting and character that you can fall in love with, and more importantly, express to others why they should care about them.. then leave the safety blanket behind.

Fanfic settings are in many ways, a crutch. You have a fanbase who are likely to check out stuff on the subject. You don't have to explain to the fanbase who your characters are, you don't need to explain a backstory, or establish personalities. That part can be difficult.. but so rewarding. Step forward, introduce me to someone new to fall in love with, or hate, or identify with, or all of the above.

*Many writers make their living as ghost writers... who essentially make fanfic to design for a publisher or head writer who is looking for something very specific. Just ask Nancy Drew. Or don't please don't. Write your own stuff. Make your money elsewhere if you have to, (you probably will) but write what speaks to you. Please.

In a one sentence quip- Fanfic is a crutch, and crutches have a benevolent purpose, but if you can eventually go without one- you are better off in the long run.