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Let Other Writers Play in Your Sandbox: Using Fanfiction as a Writer's Tool

Hey folks!

Muffy Morrigan is a fellow fanfiction writer who is now a published author. She often writes about the benefits of writing fanfiction on her website, MuffyMorrigan.com and recently I stumbled across another one of her great posts.

In this article, she talks about using fanfiction in a whole new way (at least to me). Have you ever thought about letting someone read one of your original works and then write a fanfiction story based off of it? Well neither had I until Muffy posed the question in her article below, but talk about a great way to get insight into your story, your characters and much more I’m sure.

To check out Muffy’s thoughts on the matter I invite everyone to go read Fanfiction as a Writer’s Tool, then come back and let me know what you thought of the idea and if you’re planning to let anyone jump into your world and play with YOUR characters for a little while.

As they say, turn about is fair play. Us fanfiction writers spend a lot of time playing in other writers’ sandboxes, isn’t it about time we got a taste of our own medicine?

 

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More from Moki’s Fanfiction Blog…..
FicRec Fridays: Harry Potter Snape-Centric Fanfiction Rec “Dead Roses”
6 Fanfiction Writing Tips
Fanfiction Writer to Television Star (Sort of) – My Appearance on TLC’s The Virgin Diaries
FicRec Fridays: Supernatural/Royal Pains and Supernatural/Burn Notice Crossover Fanfiction Recs
FicRec Fridays: Suits Fanfiction Recs and a New Suits Meme
FicRec Fridays: A Supernatural Fanfiction Rec – Muffy Morrigan’s “Multum In Parvo”
Welcome to FicRec Fridays: Starting us off – an NCIS Fanfiction Rec
Fanfiction Writing Tips: Using Fanvids as Inspiration

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6 Fanfiction Writing Tips

On July 23, 2012, in Fanfiction, Writing Tips, by Mokibobolink

6 Fanfiction Writing Tips

Hey folks! Here is a guest post by reader Todd Lam, with some great fanfiction writing tips. Check out the post below and let us know what you thought in the comments!


6 Fanfiction Writing Tips

- a guest post by Todd Lam

There’s a story that has grabbed your mind, heart and imagination; the culture of its environment speaks to you. What makes the story so powerful is the desire you have to speak back. You’re a fan, simple as that. What you want to create is Fanfiction: a story based on a world you’ve been pulled into and converted to.

If you want to have fun and experience great results, try applying these tips to your project.

Tip #1: Use the right tools

Fanfiction, in its simplest form, only needs your imagination. But if you have the intention of sharing your creation, you’ll need the right tools to convey that information. Though pen and paper work just fine, this is the age of computers—the best is just a click away. Story creation isn’t a linear process, which is why I recommend a writing program called Scrivener. The program allows you to take all your ideas, sketches, character notes and even webpages and pull them into a single location where they can be sorted and utilized. Drag and drop import features, outlining tools along with multiple export formats make this a fan-tastic choice for Fanfiction addicts. At only $40, it cost less than my two “Star Wars” Mimobot Thumb Drives.

Tip #2: Choose the length of your story

Have enough knowledge and momentum to write a one-shot? Or will you limit yourself to a ficlet or drabble (exactly 100 words)? The length matters when it comes to your purpose in writing. If you can form a great story, do you have a point to make, or are you focused on creating an elaborate extension of your favorite culture? The answer will directly affect the length of any tale, so choose carefully and plan accordingly.

Tip #3: Pure Fanfiction or a Crossover?

Each fan sees and experiences the world with their own twist. The question here is whether or not to spin your tale and limit it to the established world you’ve grown to love. There’s power and conviction when we stay within the pure settings of a culture. It’s an environment other fans will readily recognize and relate to. The characters, the settings, laws of magic or technology; it’s why you get converted in the first place. But you may want to consider dabbling in a crossover, involving characters or locations in another favorite culture. Think of “Star Wars” meets “Lord of the Rings.”

Tip #4: Choose your rating

You might not have considered this, but not all fans think alike. Your readers will have various tastes and your writing style (not to mention content) will determine the size of net you’re able to throw out. Sexual content, violence and language will brand your tale with an appropriate rating. G through NC-17, Adult or Mature will be applied, which will define your audience age and size. Think carefully about the type of content you intend to write before you start. You’re more likely to capture a wider audience by keeping the content witty but clean.

Tip #5: Remember, your story is a WIP

One of the best aspects of writing Fanfiction is being free to post chapters as soon as they’re completed. That’s the beauty of Works in Progress; the story is from one fan to many fans. A great advantage of the online era is being able to get feedback from communities and then making changes in your work. Take advantage of websites like Fanfiction.net and its huge internet community. By utilizing feedback, you can improve your skills and gain a larger readership; and in turn, better reviews!

Tip #6: Get in Character to Get In the Mood

When sitting down to put words to paper (or computer memory), it’s helpful to create the right mood. Surrounding yourself with memorabilia, dressing like a favorite character or just involving yourself in the story again through a movie and/or book can get your creative juices flowing. One of my personal favorites is playing a soundtrack in the background or burning heavy amounts of incense.

Those are my top tips for writing Fanfiction. If you have suggestions or methods you’ve successfully used, please leave a comment and share them with us!

Todd Lam is an entertainment writer for CableTV.com. He is a big sci-fi nerd, enjoys watching TV, and exploring the internet.

 

Want to know every time I add a new post? Be sure to subscribe to Moki’s Fanfiction Blog!


More from Moki’s Fanfiction Blog…..
Fanfictoin Writer to Television Star (Sort of) – My Appearance on TLC’s The Virgin Diaries
FicRec Fridays: Supernatural/Royal Pains and Supernatural/Burn Notice Crossover Fanfiction Recs
FicRec Fridays: Suits Fanfiction Recs and a New Suits Meme
FicRec Fridays: A Supernatural Fanfiction Rec – Muffy Morrigan’s “Multum In Parvo”
Welcome to FicRec Fridays: Starting us off – an NCIS Fanfiction Rec
Fanfiction Writing Tips: Using Fanvids as Inspiration

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Fanfiction Writing Tips: Using Fanvids as Inspiration

Using Fanvideos as Inspiration for your Fanfiction

 

The first time I saw a fanvid (a video made by a fan to show their love of a TV show, movie, etc.), I think my reaction was probably much like the first time I discovered there was such a thing as fanfiction:

“Wow, this beautiful piece of art was made by a fan??”

Since then, I think I’ve developed sort of a love/hate relationship with this thing known as a fanvid. I love them because when they are good (and so many of them are), they can bring out a myriad of emotions in me from laughter to tears. Yet I also hate them because they are much like chocolate to me and I can never watch just one. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked up at the clock only to find that an hour has just gone by and all I’ve done is watch fanvids.

Recently though I’ve discovered something quite useful about fanvids; and that is their ability to help me write fanfiction. At first it happened by accident – I would watch a few videos in a particular genre or about my favorite character and suddenly I would find myself busily typing away at a fanfic soon after. Once I realized the power of the fanvid however, I started to use it purposely and had some great results.

Writing a particularly action-packed scene in your current fic? Find a few videos to match the mood and watch how fast your fingers fly across the keyboard.

Got a really emotional scene that you need to sink your teeth into? Just pull up a few sad fanvids and soon you’ll be wiping away your tears…while writing that pivotal scene.

If you’re stuck on a story or just can’t seem to get in the mood after a long day at work or dealing with those other issues known as “real life”, a fanvid can be the perfect way to get yourself back into the mindset you want.

Here are a couple examples of some fanvids I’ve found inspiring to my work:


Got a fanfiction issue, question or problem? I can help! I am now offering fanfiction consultating/coaching services to anyone, in any fandom, writing any type of story. If you’re interested in a consultation, just email me at Moki@mokisfanfictionblog.com to get a free evaluation and find out what I can do for you.

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More from Moki’s Fanfiction Blog…..
Fanfiction Writing Tips: 5 Ways to Avoid the Dreaded “Mary Sue”
Fanfiction Writer to Entertainment Writer – My NCIS:Los Angeles and Supernatural Interviews from Comic Con
Moki’s NCIS Fanfiction Story: “The Cavalry Rides Again” – Chapter 17
Moki’s Supernatural Fanfiction Story: “Blood Brothers” – Chapter 4

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