Writing

How I Met My Fiancé by Writing Fanfiction

October 22, 2015 // 2 Comments

I started writing fanfiction at the age of fourteen, because I saw my sister doing it and I wanted to try it too. At age sixteen, when anime was just starting to become popular in the UK and I was getting involved in online fan culture, I started writing a fanfiction based on the English dub of Beyblade. (We didn’t have a lot of choice for what anime to watch in Britain back then.) It was a self-insert fic about my “Mary-Sue” character moving to New York—a glamorous city to a //

Five Psychological Benefits of Writing Fanfiction

October 21, 2015 // 5 Comments

In 2009 I began writing fanfiction as a means to jumpstart my creative process. I was so in love with the characters of the anime I was addicted to (Yu Yu Hakusho, by the way) that I wanted desperately for there to be more of their adventures and world than the complete series offered me. Burning through the entire series in two weeks’ only left that hunger festering. I was writing the first draft of a novel at the time, in between jobs and attending college. When I could no longer fill my //

In Another Place, Not Here: Writing Exotic Locales

October 21, 2015 // 0 Comments

Ah, the thrill of travel! Exploring new horizons, indulging in unfamiliar foods, and taking in sights only ever glimpsed in a guidebook holds endless appeal for us humans. We’re explorers at heart, and even if you hate the expense and inconvenience of traveling, chances are you like to read about places you’ve never been. That goes double (and maybe even triple) for fanfic writers. We live and breathe our canon. Whether our stories are set in the shadowy halls of Hogwarts, the //

E. L. James is My Hero, Kinda

October 21, 2015 // 1 Comment

In 2005, I told my friends I had written some fanfiction. They laughed, but it was too late to deter me from continuing, and ten years later I write romance novels for a living and they all have office jobs. Who’s laughing now, is what I’m saying. In 2011, 50 Shades of Grey hit the shelves and became everyone’s favorite controversial subject, whether they’d ever had contact with fanfic, romance novels, or BDSM before. There’s still a thinkpiece about it every week, so this week, //

How Writing Fanfiction Changed My Life

October 20, 2015 // 5 Comments

It’s hard to even know where to start. I can tell you with all sincerity that I would not be sitting here as a professional writer without fanfiction. To say that it merely influenced my life would be a drastic understatement. Writing fanfiction changed my life. It helped me realize an identity that was already waiting for me, the role of wordsmith. I didn’t have much going for me when I first started writing. I was homeschooled after being bullied out of my last school. I was lonely, a bit //

Exploring an Established Universe: A Highlight of China Miéville

October 20, 2015 // 0 Comments

There are worlds where superimposed city-states fight invisible wars and where outposts at the fringe of a barely-understood universe struggle to stay united despite impossible language barriers. There is a planet where scientists battle moths that eat dreams, where underground crime is conducted by ganglords with too many limbs, and where interdimensional spider-beings speak in unending free-verse—they call this place Bas-Lag. In fact, all of these places have names—they’ve already been //

Show, Don’t Tell: Why Action Speaks Louder Than Words in Fiction Writing

October 20, 2015 // 1 Comment

book with birds flying out
Far and away, the most common piece of writing advice given to budding authors is “show, don’t tell.” Don’t just tell the reader about the setting, the characters, or the story, show it to them. After all, in fiction writing, actions speak louder than words. It’s solid advice. Seeing something is more fun than just being told them about it, but it fails to answer the next logical question: what does “showing” even mean? This is the roadblock that most beginning writers get //