pittwitch

How Did You Find Fanfiction?

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In a burst of nostalgia, I tried to find my way back to the first ever “net” fanfiction I read.  I chanced upon it after my little ones were asleep and I couldn’t  manage that feat as well.  A google search on Severus Snape led me to SnapeCast which then had featured fictions.  This was LONG before all the books were out.  The one that trapped me involved a piano playing Snape who actually managed to lead the children to safety in the fiction’s version of the final battle.  I can’t remember the title.  I can’t find it again.  But I began to wonder about my fellow AFF members.  How did you fall down the rabbit hole?

Edited by pittwitch

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It’s been ages, but I believe that the first time I came across fanfictions was all the way back to the Geocities days. Back then fansites were a big thing, and they sprang around like we’ve got wiki pages these days. And while most of them offered some basic information of certain series, along with the occasional image, there were a few that had fan made stories set in the same fandom.

I must admit that this caught my attention, and a quick search later led me to some of the biggest fanfiction archives at the time. Some of them are still around today, but the majority of the smaller ones are all but abandoned.

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First time I came across fanfiction, I thought I had downloaded a stolen copy of JKR’s fifth book, so I deleted it.  Didn’t realize until sometime later that it was fanfiction, not her book.  Once I realized, I began to read, got hooked.  I found a fanfic story that I liked, and while waiting for the author to post, started to drum a list of possible plot ideas to send to them … before I knew it, I decided to sketch it out, and I had my own story, though taking a minor character of hers and changing it into a major character.   After I that story, I began a sequel.   With how these stories started, I can’t bring them here :(

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I knew someone a long time ago who wrote Buffy fan fiction, and while the idea sounded intriguing, it wasn’t a fandom I was drawn to. My elderspawn was still small, and my Internet time was spend hosting chats for an AOL seed venue called Moms Online. The fanfic writer was a fellow chat host, and I think if the site where she published had been more than just Buffy fiction, I might have wandered over.

So, many years later, while irritated by what was really a huge amount of laziness on the part of the writers of the CRPG Neverwinter Nights 2, I went prowling through the Bioware community forums, and chanced upon a thread with the title, “The Shirtless Saga.” It seems I wasn’t the only one peeved by plot holes and lousy character development and apparently people wrote fan fiction to address these deficiencies. The spawn were old enough not to need my every waking moment, and so, one afternoon at the pool, I pulled out a notebook and wrote my first fan fiction, which I posted on FFN before I could talk myself out of it.

And once I’d taken that plunge, while reading an amazing fan fiction by another author, I discovered he had posted a far less decorous version here. And there were more stories, and more fandoms like LotR, and… well, apparently AFF is sort of stuck with me.  :lol:

Edited by BronxWench

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I’ve been thinking about this most of the afternoon, and it happened in 2008, probably somewhere in February or March most likely. If memory serves I discovered anime that spring, more precisely Death Note, and a little while later Bleach. And googling the interwebs to find out the name of the intro-song in Death Note, I somehow stumbled upon fan fiction. Surprisingly enough, the Pit instantly felt all kinds of wrong, so I never ventured there. Somewhere in these aimless wanderings of the dark alleys of the World Wide Web, I stumbled across of all things, a Supernatural fan fiction, and since that was another silly thing I liked, I followed that rabbit and found AFF. 

I honestly can’t remember exactly how it happened, but I do remember that it had something to do with Supernatural, Death Note, and Bleach, and then in the process I not only discovered AFF but also my favourite band, Nightmare. :D 

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I was a kid. It was like 1997 or 1998 and I was kinda exploring the internet for the first time. Found some websites for my favourite (at the time) TV show, Breaker High (A canadian high school drama) and lo and behold, one of the sites had fics on it! I didn’t know wtf fan fiction was, so I read those fics thinking they were like transcripts of episodes. I thought I had watched every episode there was so I was super excited that they didn’t sound familiar. 

And then they got dirty. That’s when I kinda realized that these ‘episodes’ did not uphold the Canadian Broadcast Co. standards. Then I realized if other people could write that shit, so the hell could I! With my newfound godly powers, I impregnated the whole cast of characters, because… well, because I could. 

Yup. 

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I wrote some of my early fanfic attempts in pen pre-internet including a really terrible vampire story. No porn fics in them days for me! Don’t recall precisely now the first fanfic I read. Never looked at that sort of thing at school, but I first got on the internet at home in the late 90s. So, in terms of internet fanfic from others, I would have first read it either on a geocities fansite or one of the alt.fan newsgroups for me. I seem to recall alt.fan.pratchett was specifically against fan fiction being posted there, but not all of them were like that. Though many newsgroups were basically dying by that point it didn’t take long to find newsgroups with more dedicated FF content either. I had my own geocities fansite for a while with ther standard web ring links and and hit counters. They didn’t have a lot of space and the amount of page impressions allowed in an hour was tiny, but still good times… There was a long gone site called something like trekslash.ca which I am pretty sure was where I read a lot of really good Janeway/Torres femslash. One author was amazing and I can’t even recall their name. 

I found the early version of the Grey Archive in about 2000 and it was on there I first heard of AFF being set up a couple years later. If I am remembering right this was after the FF.net first big mature content purge. I lurked/anonymously reviewed on AFF and didn’t join with my original account here ‘til 2004.

Weird to think how much time has passed tbh.

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4 hours ago, JayDee said:

I found the early version of the Grey Archive in about 2000 and it was on there I first heard of AFF being set up a couple years later. If I am remembering right this was after the FF.net first big mature content purge. I lurked/anonymously reviewed on AFF and didn’t join with my original account here ‘til 2004.

Joined FF.net in April of 2003, during their purge, so while I dabbled on “dirty” versions to my story, I focused on the more “clean” ones (not that those are particularly clean, just figured it’s low enough not to be a concern there).   When I went to post my originals, I studied the ToS for the original side of FF.net, and realized that wasn’t going to work, found AFF.net and joined four years ago here.  As I’ve recently started to rework the second fanfic (sequel to my first), I’ve had an urge to post the “smut” version; I’m still trying to work out the best place for that.

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7 hours ago, JayDee said:

I had my own geocities fansite for a while with ther standard web ring links and and hit counters.

Yaas! Omg so did I. When I first got into Tekken fanfiction and didn’t know how the internet worked, I thought I was gonna make myself a huge archive like FF net. I actually convinced a bunch of fan fic authors to post on my super tacky site. 

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That’s more successful than most, I’m sure. I bet a lot of those authors remember your support and hosting fondly. And anyway, very few sites weren’t super tacky in those days to be fair to ya :) (Image link to screencap of AFF in 2003 – https://imgur.com/a/kRIfgLH )

Mmmm red font on black background…

 

 

Edited by JayDee

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27 minutes ago, JayDee said:

That’s more successful than most, I’m sure. I bet a lot of those authors remember your support and hosting fondly. And anyway, very few sites weren’t super tacky in those days to be fair to ya :) (Image link to screencap of AFF in 2003 – https://imgur.com/a/kRIfgLH )

Mmmm red font on black background…

That totally ruins the eyes, it’d be better for eye strain to be a pink font on that black background!  :)

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1 hour ago, JayDee said:

That’s more successful than most, I’m sure. I bet a lot of those authors remember your support and hosting fondly. And anyway, very few sites weren’t super tacky in those days to be fair to ya :) (Image link to screencap of AFF in 2003 – https://imgur.com/a/kRIfgLH )

Mmmm red font on black background…

 

 

That is completely awesome! Baby pics of our beloved AFF… :lol:

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     I wrote fanfiction before I even knew it was a thing.  I was huge into the Star Wars novels and, naturally, as all kids do at some point, wrote Mary Sue self insert stories.  Mostly in the Young Jedi Knights era and Old Republic when that game came out.  But in the beginning, when the world was unformed, before cell phones could go on the internet but after Personal Computers became primarily for web browsing (so 2006ish) I found that there were whole communities of people who also indulged in this hobby.  I actually found AFF before regular FanFiction, but I considered quality on this sight substantially superior to FF, which I don’t suspect is moderated.  Harry Potter dominated the fan fiction circuit at the time and I found an OG known as Ms Figg (RIP) who wrote amazing stories that made me realize how good fanfiction could actually be.  It helped that AFF has an easy to navigate and well maintained forum, which I would visit from time to time.  I didn’t sign up and start creating content until a few years ago when I saw all the challenges that weren’t getting taken and decided to try my hand at writing, figuring it would be good practice for becoming an actual novelist.  Turns out smut fics are a lot easier to write than cleaner stories because they typically have a lemon that is the meat and potatoes of the story and everything is support, so there’s not really a holistic outlook in reading or writing them and they can be serialized easily.

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3 hours ago, Praetor said:

I didn’t sign up and start creating content until a few years ago when I saw all the challenges that weren’t getting taken and decided to try my hand at writing, figuring it would be good practice for becoming an actual novelist.  Turns out smut fics are a lot easier to write than cleaner stories because they typically have a lemon that is the meat and potatoes of the story and everything is support, so there’s not really a holistic outlook in reading or writing them and they can be serialized easily.

I didn’t sign up until I had an original I wanted to post w/o stripping it of the adult material.  I was content with some toning down for a different site, but the originals, no, I didn’t want that.  When I found out that AFF allowed originals, I signed up. 

Depending on the extent, a story with some smut elements can be watered down a bit, made passable w/o ruining the story, or at least the effect.  However, other stories...I’ve got one that starts out at a nudist colony, that’s not being watered down w/o putting clothes on them all, which would change the flavor of what I was going for.

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4 hours ago, Praetor said:

     I wrote fanfiction before I even knew it was a thing.  I was huge into the Star Wars novels and, naturally, as all kids do at some point, wrote Mary Sue self insert stories.  Mostly in the Young Jedi Knights era and Old Republic when that game came out.  But in the beginning, when the world was unformed, before cell phones could go on the internet but after Personal Computers became primarily for web browsing (so 2006ish) I found that there were whole communities of people who also indulged in this hobby.  I actually found AFF before regular FanFiction, but I considered quality on this sight substantially superior to FF, which I don’t suspect is moderated.  Harry Potter dominated the fan fiction circuit at the time and I found an OG known as Ms Figg (RIP) who wrote amazing stories that made me realize how good fanfiction could actually be.  It helped that AFF has an easy to navigate and well maintained forum, which I would visit from time to time.  I didn’t sign up and start creating content until a few years ago when I saw all the challenges that weren’t getting taken and decided to try my hand at writing, figuring it would be good practice for becoming an actual novelist.  Turns out smut fics are a lot easier to write than cleaner stories because they typically have a lemon that is the meat and potatoes of the story and everything is support, so there’s not really a holistic outlook in reading or writing them and they can be serialized easily.

I so loved the Figg’s stories too!  She is sorely missed.  :)

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I’m reviving an old topic but I’m enjoying reading how others found fanfiction. When I was in elementary school around 5th grade-ish, one of my teachers introduced us to looking at a picture and making up a story to go with it. I fell in love with doing that. My friend and I around that same time discovered anime so it evolved from looking at a picture and thinking of a story to watching a show and creating a story involving the characters we liked. My BFF and I would write stories together on notebook paper and then eventually found FFN, started reading stories, and writing/publishing our stories on there. It’s been a great creative outline and I will be forever grateful to that one teacher (whom I remember his name) for introducing me, without knowing it, to fanfiction and creative writing.

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19 hours ago, AquaTonic said:

I’m reviving an old topic but I’m enjoying reading how others found fanfiction. When I was in elementary school around 5th grade-ish, one of my teachers introduced us to looking at a picture and making up a story to go with it. I fell in love with doing that. My friend and I around that same time discovered anime so it evolved from looking at a picture and thinking of a story to watching a show and creating a story involving the characters we liked. My BFF and I would write stories together on notebook paper and then eventually found FFN, started reading stories, and writing/publishing our stories on there. It’s been a great creative outline and I will be forever grateful to that one teacher (whom I remember his name) for introducing me, without knowing it, to fanfiction and creative writing.

Kudos for an inspirational teacher!

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i honestly don’t know… i’ve been dictating stories in my head as long as i can remember.…. i was shipping quietly before i even new it was a thing, using characters to learn how to draw and write my own… and writing better endings to works i found needlessly bleak or self defeating. at some point… i just went looking for more stories. it just seemed so natural, like slipping into a familiar road. it was webcomics and images before out-and-out fanfiction though… that i remember.

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I’m not sure exactly how I found fanfiction, but I seem to remember it being related or immediately time-adjacent to a period where I was very into early scripts for movies I liked.  Sort of the same thing, a different take on an existing universe, I guess.  I had access to a parent’s company printer, so I would print out fanfiction stories and read them like a book.  (I know this sounds wasteful, but the alternative was reading them on a CRT monitor where if the dialup connection crapped out between chapter links I was screwed!)  This was back in the late ‘90s/early ‘00s, so if FFN was up by then, I didn’t know about it, and was reading things from Geocities sites, boutique video game/RPG-specific sites run by individual people, etc.  Weird to think back to then, it wouldn’t be for years later that I started writing my own fics.

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