All words presented in this blog are purely opinion, not fact - unless specifically stated otherwise in the post.

Friday 26 July 2013

Fan fiction; practice or profession?

So I'm a big advocate of fan fiction. Using someone else's universe to develop your writing style is something that I think more writers should talk about or at least think about. Reading or watching or even listening to other people's work can inspire people in tremendous ways, and they can use this inspiration to create something of their own.
That said I don't see this as anything more than practice. I see this as a nice way to develop, and maybe a bit of fun - yes fun, I enjoy writing. However kindle have recently put into effect something called "kindle worlds". Kindle worlds is a handful of book, comic and tv series that amazon have either got an agreement with or bought the Rits to various intellectual properties to allow people to write whatever ey want.

Now I'm not sure what to make of this. On the one hand it's an interesting direction to go, it opens new doors for a lot of people looking to get into writing, but on the other hand I feel that it will flood the market with crap and it will lower the bar.
Don't get me wrong, sometimes I want a lower bar, or at least a couple less hoops to jump through to get published, but one of the reasons writers are highly regarded is because they do it by themselves and its difficult.
Writers create entire worlds and theologies and histories and futures all in a single book, they entertain and enthral us with their words and that's impressive because they did it on their own. They came up with everything and worked it into their books in such a way that it was compelling and made us care (or not, in the bad cases). Fan fiction requires far less thought or originality or creativity from the writer because the world and characters are all ther. It requires less story and less of a hook because people just want to see their favourite characters in new scenarios.

I don't know what kindle worlds is the beginning of. Will it expand to the point that nobody writes original fiction anymore? Will it fizzle out as a failed experiment? Will things pretty much stay as they are   except for a select few stories that - like the twilight fan fiction know as 'fifty shades' - do incredibly well. Or, most likely, does this mark the beginning of the end? Taking us into a post apocalyptic hell where the world is split into severely polarised factions. Trekkies in one place, Star Wars nerds in another, twilight fans roaming the wastes of New England while hunger games crazies terrorise the Scottish highlands, all refusing to believe that their passion is equally or less valid than another's, none willing to let another live unless they recant their belief.
As I say, I don't know where this will lead, but I don't think I like our chances.

Blogging on the tracks (train tracks) means no hyperlinks apparently. So no tubage. If you need a video I noticed a couple other call me batman videos, go google.


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