ladyfoxxx: (Default)
ladyfoxxx ([personal profile] ladyfoxxx) wrote2013-06-19 11:20 am

My Fannish Origin Story

Let's just pretend I've been posting regularly, shall we?

So some folk were talking about fannish origins on Twitter and it got me thinking, I don't know if I've ever really shared my origin story in any real deapth and it might actually be a fun thing to do. So, here it is.

The only reason I even heard about fanfic was because of the X Files. I was a HARDCORE X-Files fan before I even had the internet (god I sound old now). I'd heard that some folks out there in the "cyberworld" were so sure that Mulder & Scully were in love that they were writing their own stories about it and "R-ing the ST" as it were and as soon as I heard that I HAD TO READ THEM. I remember paying for time at an internet cafe JUST to search for and read fanfic.

Of course once I had my own internet at home I fell down the hole of the Gossamer archive and read ALL THE THINGS (including the terrible Mary Sues before I even realised that was a thing). I wasn't really aware or even interested in slash at first because I was a pretty hardcore Mulder/Scully shipper (they were my first OTP, before I even knew what the fuck those letters stood for).

Me being me, I didn't stay obsessed with the fandom's central pairing for long. I got pretty obsessed with a recurring character in the series, Agent Pendrell who worked in the lab, had a huge crush on Scully and was ginger haired and socially awkward.

Everyone who is surprised that I was obsessed with the dorky lab guy raise your hands. *no hands are raised* I thought so.

Now the Pendrell corner of the fandom was smaller and very friendly and welcoming and this was about the time I thought maybe I could try writing something. About Pendrell, of course. But the problem then is - who do I slash this guy with? I don't want to break up my OTP!

So my first real fic in X Files fandom was a threesome.

Everyone who is surprised raise your hands. *no hands are raised*

Of course there it was only a very small step between writing Mulder/Scully/Pendrell to writing Mulder/Pendrell and the wonderful world of slash opened it's arms to me.

I haven't read any of those old fics in years and I'm a little afraid to. I'm pretty sure the bulk of them are in first person. Oh GOD.

I honestly can't remember how I went from The X Files to Savage Garden. Like, it's a weird leap, right? I mean, I was reading ALL the things (Star Wars episode one, Velvet Goldmine, all the different pairings in X Files etc), but somehow when I discovered that there was a small circle of people writing fic about Savage Garden I was THERE. I was hopping through webrings (ha ha ha WEBRINGS) and reading everything. Not all of it was great. In fact, lots of it was terrible, and a lot of it was getting written in parts with no real idea when (or even IF) the next part was coming. Also not all multipart fics necessarily had proper content warnings thus how I wound up reading a multi part WIP that suddenly had surprise!mpreg and it kind of put me off mpreg for LIFE.

For anyone not familiar with Savage Garden they were a pop duo in the 90's/00's - they had a lot of hits with love songs. I didn't even want to sleep with either of them, I just really liked reading about them. Plus I was totally qualified to write about them because they were from my hometown. In fact, Darren (singer) worked at my local music store when I was a wee thing.

So anyway, RPS. OMG. RPS was SUCH a dirty word in fandom back then. I'm not entirely sure why, but a LOT of people writing FPS about characters in shows were DISGUSTED by RPS. And not only were we writing RPS, we were writing SLASH RPS. We were totally the SEEDY UNDERBELLY of fandom, yo. You write GAY fic about REAL PEOPLE, EW.

I remember one quite well known FPS writer made a throwaway comment about how one of her guilty pleasure was she would occasionally read Savage Garden RPS and OMG IT'S SO BAD but she COULDN'T HELP IT. I was kind of terrified/hopeful that she might one day read one of mine.

Anyway, so my first fic in Savage Garden fandom... was a threesome.

Raise your hands all who are surprised. *no hands are raised* It was Darren/Daniel/Daniel's girlfriend and it all went terribly because of course Daniel professed his love to Darren in the middle of rumpy-pumpy and broke her heart and ANGST ANGST ANGST.

Savage Garden fandom was FUN. We were a small fandom and we had plenty to work with (I mean, Darren is out these days, but back then he just liked to be "ambiguous"). I'm pretty sure I wrote the first high school AU and the first hooker fic, but don't quote me on that. Of course, then the band broke up (as they do) and while the fandom kicked on a while after it eventually died.

I think it was around this time that I thought fandom had died altogether, because the mailing lists (yes, we used to do fandom on mailing lists, GOD I am old) were getting less and less active. I was kind of falling away from fandom anyway, with my own fandom dying and no real interest in a new one so I never really figured out that fandom wasn't DYING but CHANGING.

Fast forward about seven years where I'm pretty much out of it but occasionally checking in to dead mailing lists and I get an email out of the blue from [personal profile] amproof to let me know my (Savage Garden Fanfiction) geocities site is about to go down forever. Of course this is the point where I learn fandom isn't DEAD it just MOVED - to LJ, so I get an LJ, fall face-first into the disgusting, beautiful, stage-gay-ey world of MCR. Like everyone I started with Frank/Gerard but pretty soon it was ANYONE/ANYONE, with a particular bent of Ray/anyone. Also I avoided Panic at first because I thought they were babies but I totally didn't hold out long there, not with all the awesome GSF and BDSM to be had.

Interestingly upon my return to fandom I noticed that RPS was NO LONGER a dirty word, probably because fandom seemed to have moved beyond that to push more taboo boundaries like incest *hands*. No really, it took me quite a while to get past that. But oh, I DID.

So that's my Fannish Origin Story. What's yours?
turlough: Gerard Way smoking and trying to look badass, NME Awards, London, 23 February 2011 ((mcr) cause i don't feel bad about it)

[personal profile] turlough 2013-06-19 06:30 pm (UTC)(link)
I think it says a lot about how big it was that so many people seem to have started their fannish life in X-Files. It wasn't my gateway to fanfic fandom - that was Doctor Who - but it was the fandom I first read widely in.

I'd been quite active both on Usenet and on mailing lists back in the mid-late 90s but that was in science fiction book fandom and I didn't discover fanfic until after my back had gotten really bad and I'd to stop typing so much. It was either in late 1999 or early in 2000 when I discovered Dr Who fanfic on Usenet and about a week later I started wondering if there was any Turlough/Fifth Doctor fanfic and found slash. I never looked back :-)

It was through her Turlough/Fifth Doctor stories that I found Viridian5's website where I discovered first X-Files - where I spent several months happily reading lots and lots of Krycek/Mulder before I got bored - and then Buffy - mostly Xander/Spike - and Andromeda - first Harper/Dyland and then Harper/Tyr. After that I spent quite some time in assorted anime: Weiss Kreutz, Gundam Wing, Yoroiden Samurai Troopers, Saiyuki. Then for some reason I went back to live action with Stargate SG-1 for some months and then fell into my first book fandom with Harry Potter.

Through all these fandoms I'd been a complete lurker. I only read fic and never interacted with any other fans. Mostly because I didn't have either the mental or the physical energy since my back was so bad. I'd become aware of LJ in Harry Potter fandom but it wasn't until after I'd fallen into popslash in late autumn 2004 that tentatively started to interact with other fans again. I got my LJ in April 2005 and was very active in popslash until I couldn't avoid falling into bandom in early autumn 2007. (I completely blame Nafs and her Nick Carter/Patrick crossover story!) I tried to juggle two fandoms for a while but it didn't work. I'm definitely a serial monogamist where fandom is concerned. I read the occasional story in one of my old fandoms and do some graphics but mostly I'm still all about bandom. Or rather MCR since I quickly lost interest in Pete/Patrick and found Panic totally uninteresting. (Also, LOTMS really does have a lot to answer for :-)

I think it must have been because I was such a lurker because I'd no idea there was any stigma attached to RPS until after I'd fallen into popslash. I still feel quite bewildered by all the RPS hate that floated around back in the day. (And still does in certain corners of fandom I've noticed.)
lucifuge5: (Default)

[personal profile] lucifuge5 2013-06-20 02:49 am (UTC)(link)
Huh, funny. I only knew Viridian5 from her due South fic back when I was in that fandom. I remember going to her website and gleefully ignoring all the links except for the due South ones. LOL.
turlough: Spike & Xander Harris ((buffy) snarkitude)

[personal profile] turlough 2013-06-20 09:43 pm (UTC)(link)
Pike & Benny!! I totally blame Viridian5 for my love of those guys. (And I sometimes think that my lukewarm interest in the Buffy canon was because they weren't in the tv show :-)