Stolen shamelessly from likeadeuce
. I went for a slight twist on this, as I have been navel-gazing more and more recently.10 Unpopular
Fannish Fandom Opinions
1. Having two male characters decide that they want a baby is enough justification for an MPREG fic.
There's the issue of - well, it's not physically possible. Why is people wanting
something seen as justification for letting them have it, despite all physical laws? If they want a baby, why is there no thought given to adoption? Why must magic immediately enter into it? I'm sorry, but even stretching my suspension of disbelief as much as I can, I can't buy psontaneous MPREG, no matter how well it is written.
2. There are ways to retcon rape that still allows our characters to get together
. I'm mainly talking about Spike/Buffy here, but also about a recent Lois & Clark fic I read where alt!Lois was dumped in a dimension where Kal-El was an evil overlord and held her as a slave for three years - only to come back and (eventually) fall in love with alt!Clark. I'm sorry, but I don't see a way to allow such a huge breach of trust to be retconned in any way that would allow those two characters a 'happily ever after' relationship. They might be able to rebuild their friendship, maybe
, but to go back into a physical relationship so quickly? No.
Btw, the L&C fic was extraordinarily well written, and very long - the author clearly understood the issues that would have to be overcome but, IMO, having this be solved in under a year was still unrealistic.
3. When offering f/b, you should respond with encouragement, and only offer criticism if the writer asks for it
. No. I'm sorry, but 'feedback' does not equal 'encouragement'. If the writer wants encouragement, they should ask for it. Asking for feedback involves asking for what worked and what didn't. Asking your boss for feedback does not mean that they sing your praises - they'll cover your strengths and areas of development. This is no different.
4. Incest between character X and character Y is 'obvious'
. No, it really isn't, not unless it's canon. My argument is as follows:
Saying that there is UST between two characters is one thing. Having them engage in behaviour that they don't canonically engage in works fine for me (i.e. unconventional relationships). People sometimes sleep with people they didn't really intend to sleep with - just look at Spike and Anya. However
, you're not going to find two siblings 'accidentally' falling into bed together and not thinking, "OMG, this is my brother/sister, WHAT AM I DOING??" The incest taboo is one of the strongest taboos out there. The only one that comes close is cannibalism - and you'd hardly have your characters engaging in what without a second thought. So why this focus on having incest as 'natural'?
This is vaguely regarding the Malfoy!cest, Weasley!cest, Potter!cest and Win!cest out there. Now, I've read some amazing 'cesty stuff, but the only ones that work for me are the ones that acknowledge that a taboo is being broken. Just skipping over it as cowardice on the part of the writer, and it's lazy
, to boot. If you don't want to deal with the implications of the pairing, why not pick a different pairing, one that doesn't have such taboos surrounding it?
Now, in cases like Carnivale
, where there is canon incest, the fic tends to take the taboos into account - because it tends to be covered on the show in any case. Please, take note - if writing incest, watch a couple of shows that actually feature it and deal with it appropriately, don't write it as a fairy tale. There are no ways in which a parent/child sexual relationship can be written as natural. By all means, if you want to write it, then write it. But don't shy away from what you are writing.
5. Slash is a 'superior' art-form
has had ten million essays on this, and yet there still appears to be a substantial faction in fandom that believes that those who can, slash, and those who can't, het. Where this leaves gen!fic is anyone's guess. Maybe it's because I've moved away from large fandoms into small, obscrube ones where there is a dearth of any
of fic, but this sort of chauvanism really gets to me. It's not so much that I don't like slash - I am a slasher, after all - but that I think in the clash between slash and het, gen gets lost along the way. Personally, I define 'gen' as anything that keeps to the canon of the series, and doesn't focus primarily on a relationship rather than a plot. It's a plot-driven story rather than a relationship-driven one, but that doesn't mean that it's not character-
driven as a consequence. A well-written gen story can reveal more about a relationship than a slash or het story might in the same circumstances - yet it doesn't get any sort of consideration. Gen, it appears has been consigned to the children's section - OG-rated, smut-free, and entirely uninteresting.
Not so. Gen fic is often the best-crafted fic out there, as it relies on something other than 'shipper support to keep the story going. If a het or slash fic falters, a smoochy scene between the OTP will often keep it afloat for a while - but a gen fic doesn't have that to fall back on. The standards, in short, are higher and more consistent throughout the fic. That is not to say that you can't have badly-written gen fic, but I'd argue that it is easier to spot, especially if parts
of a gen fic are badly written.
This view primarily stems from my preference for fics that have a plot other
than bringing our two characters together. I would argue that there can be an adult gen fic, although the current ratings/segmentation system does not allow for it. It is a fic rated higher than the standards PG for either sex or violence, but it is not about an OTP and so cannot be called a shipper fic. Doing so is a disservice to it.
6. A Season 1 version of Character X is fine for my Season 7 story
. You'd be surprised how many people justify an interpretation of a character with evidence from 5 years previous. Seriously, as a character witness, would you
cite someone's behaviour of a decade ago as justification for their actions now? If the Season 7 version of a character would not do what you need them to do for the fic, there might be a good reason for that.
7. My story is AU - it's a 'what if character X never fell in love with character y but character z instead, and then the world ended and character x was turned into a turtle and they all moved to the bottom of the ocean and spoke in tongues'.
No, your story is not an AU of Fandom A, it's an original fic story that uses the same names as fandom A characters. Please, stop kidding yourself. A good example of an AU is the Babylon 5 fanfic "A Dark Distorted Mirror" that takes the 'what if?' question of: "what if the Minbari had not surrendered at the Battle of the Line?" and runs with it for 5 volumes, covering all 5 seasons of the show. All the characters that show up in the show show up in the fic, and the changes that the 'what if?' brings to their world is explored.
A bad example of an AU is an AU where Harry killed Voldemort as a baby and was raised by unicorns and fell in love with a unicorn princess and they had babies and this story is about what happens when the babies grow up and go to Hogwarts.
No. Please, no.
8. Telling writers about our story ideas is really funny and they really appreciate our enthusiasm!
No, what you are doing is potentially holding up the development of the show. Those in the B5 fandom might well remember that the reason why "Passing Through Gethsemane" was held until the third season was because someone pitched JMS an unsolicited idea that was remarkably similar to it - and held up the development of the episode until the legal wrangles could be sorted. It's also the reason why warren_ellis
doesn't really use his lj anymore - one too many people left story ideas in the comments section for him to cope with.
9. My OTP is TRUE and DESTINED because -
. Oh dear god, am I ever glad that I am not remotely involved in the HP fandom shipper wars. Why? Just - why? Can you imagine something similar breaking out over Jane Austen pairing Fanny Price with Edward rather than the dashing Henry Crawford? No. Why? Because it's a book. You can dislike the choice, sure, and you can dislike it quite a bit, but hating other people for preferring a different pairing is the equivalent of green/purple.
10.Spoilers are EEEEVIL! And by spoilers I mean even one-word responses to episodes such as 'squee!' or 'bums!'
Remember how people were pissed off at being 'spoiled' for the HP:HBP book covers? It's like that, only worse. My god, how do you live in the world? Suppose that someone sitting behind you on the bus says how excited they are over last night's LOST - wouldn't that spoil it for you?? There are spoiler warnings, and then there are ridiculous requests regarding spoiler warnings, and this falls into the latter category.