What are your fan fiction gripes?

Discussion in 'Fan Town' started by OtherCat, Aug 27, 2016.

  1. swirlingflight

    swirlingflight inane analysis and story spinning is my passion

    When people delete their entire fanon presence - no notes left behind as explanation - with little or no warning. Not only does it mean most everyone looking for their fic later is left worrying they'd been hacked or something, but depending on the reasons, people might wind up accidentally continuing to break the deleted person's wants!

    And let me not vagueblog. This is specifically about tardisistheonlywaytotravel, who recently deleted all their fandom content on every site that I know of. I've already seen a couple of Tumblr posts and a Reddit post where people were startled and worried by the discovery, going "do you know what happened?" "no, I was hoping someone else knew," with a couple of internet sleuths trying to find any hint of what or why.

    Rumor has it this mass deletion was because tardis didn't want their fics mentioned on Goodreads and people kept putting listings up anyway. Rumor, because I can't fucking confirm this is the reason, as they seem to have deleted all the places they mentioned their unhappiness and intentions!

    So if they did delete everything in hopes that people would respect their wishes and forget their content, that's not gonna happen anytime soon. People are openly asking for saved copies of the deleted fics and sharing links to archives, because there's no way for us to confirm that tardis doesn't want anyone to.

    Like. Leave a blank profile that says "I deleted because X, do not distribute anything I created" would let people know. Leave some explanation for all the people who never broke that request. Something to indicate any of it ever mattered, instead of flipping the table and storming out.

    This mass deletion bullshit leaves mysteryand plausible deniability for people to keep on doing whatever.
    • Witnessed x 9
    • Agree x 7
  2. ChelG

    ChelG Well-Known Member

    Someone on Tumblr recently reminded me of a pet peeve; strongly sex-shaming attitudes in settings which have no reason to be that way. Harry Potter fanfic using the "magical virginity" trope (literally or figuratively) among teenagers in 90s Britain has been pointed out by a friend of mine as not gelling with his experiences of being a teen in 90s Britain, and Redwall Abbey being given attitudes congruent with American Protestant sexual mores doesn't work at all - it's canon that Sisters and Brothers of the Abbey can be married without leaving the Order (as Celtic-era Christian clergy could be), they're not exactly ascetic in anything else, and they have at least one blatantly horny song. I wonder if it's to do with the fanwriters being American and picking up on Puritanical vibes in the culture that we don't have to quite the same extent here?
    • Agree x 5
    • Witnessed x 1
  3. latitans

    latitans zounds, scoob

    The Harry Potter example is interesting because, while British teens in the nineties weren’t necessarily puritanical, the books themselves are incredibly weird about sex

    like in book 6 Harry, a sixteen year old boy living with a bunch of other sixteen year old boys, seems completely surprised by the very concept of horniness
    • Agree x 5
  4. Acey

    Acey a girl with a crown and a scepter

    Two thoughts on all this, one specific and one more general:

    1. I'm admittedly not terribly familiar with HP lore (I read the first four books as a young child and kinda uh...never read past that), so I can't speak to this specific example that well, but I wonder if it was because the series was intended for kids. I say "I wonder" because yeah, that is super weird considering that (from what I've heard) the characters were supposed to kinda grow along with the readers, so you'd think at that point it would be perfectly acceptable to include...not necessarily sexual content, but indications that yes, teenagers get horny. (Hell, look at most YA.)

    2. One thing with writing fic for more kid-friendly media is that the source material often contains little to no adult content, and I sorta wonder if some writers in these fandoms are doing it to come across as more true to canon? I personally find that a bit silly, frankly, but I can sorta understand the impulse, at least. That being said, I think @ChelG has a valid point--writers tend to reflect the culture and values they grew up with in their work, and a LOT of these writers grew up in America, which, yeah, it's a society that is honestly extremely sexually repressed and often downright puritanical.

    ...Actually, I seem to recall there being a similar (albeit more general) thing about this in Ye Olde Dayese--there was some Harry Potter fanfic where a character expressed love for pepperjack cheese, which is common in the US but apparently is (or at least was at the time) next to unheard of in Britain, and iirc "pepperjack" became kind of a term for the phenomenon of American writers not actually understanding British culture at all. If I had to guess, this is quite likely more of that. :P
    • Informative x 2
  5. latitans

    latitans zounds, scoob

    tbc it’s not just Harry finding his own attraction to Ginny to be so incomprehensible and strange that he thinks of it as a dragon, there’s a lot of other negative attitudes towards sex in the later books. See e.g the later characterizations of Cho Chang, Fleur Delacour, and Lavender Brown.

    ETA Forgot where I was going with that lol. I meant that the books’ own treatments of sexuality certainly seep into fan fiction—sometimes uncritically, but sometimes fic writers try to challenge or spin them into something more interesting or realistic
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2020
    • Agree x 6
    • Informative x 1
  6. latitans

    latitans zounds, scoob

    also I would reject the assumption that American teens are for some reason more repressed than British teens. It’s not like cultural conservatism is uniquely American.
    • Agree x 5
  7. emythos

    emythos Lipstick Hoarding Dragon

    the books have this Thing that i can only describe as "being femme, interested in boys, or femme and interested in boys is a sign you are stupid, evil, duplicitious, or all three"
    • Agree x 7
    • Informative x 1
  8. garden

    garden lucid dreamer

    when i was reading your first paragraph, i was like “oh hey, i encountered this recently with tardisistheonlywaytottravel,” and then i got to your second paragraph. totally agree that going nuclear prevents you from being able to communicate your desires/preferred policy re: your deleted works
    • Witnessed x 7
  9. swirlingflight

    swirlingflight inane analysis and story spinning is my passion

    I had a feeling I wasn't the only one who ran into this, and I'm gonna be going argh about it for a bit
    • Witnessed x 8
  10. vuatson

    vuatson [delurks]

    huh. I think they were one of the authors whose works I always saw recommended but never got around to reading. that sucks.

    I will say though. this is probably controversial but I do not respect wishes from authors to not have their works saved and distributed after they delete them. to not put links up on a public site, fine, I can see that, but I don't consider saving and handing out pdfs to anyone who asks to be immoral. the destruction of information is anathema to me and once something is made public, the author is no longer the one who controls what people do with it.
    • Agree x 10
  11. HonestlyVan

    HonestlyVan a very funny person who never tells jokes

    I'm mostly with vuatson on this one, although a common courtesy should be extended to people who no longer want to be associated with their old work. A right to be forgotten, if you will. If someone orphans their work, it is reasonable to treat that story as unauthored.
    • Agree x 11
  12. ChelG

    ChelG Well-Known Member

    Yeah, that's pretty much just 1990s femalehood, or at least my experience of it.

    I'm not claiming Britain doesn't have weird attitudes towards sex at all, it's just the particular flavour of Puritanism isn't something that crops up here, at least not as much. To use the Potter reference again, it's more like "it's not polite to discuss it (therefore don't explain properly to kids what's going on)" than "you are Ruined Forever and Hell-bound if you do it".
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2020
    • Informative x 2
    • Agree x 1
  13. Codeless

    Codeless Cheshire Cat

    Yeah, US particular flavour of sex negativity is kind of unique. That doesn´t mean it doesn´t exist elsewhere, it sure does, but the way it presents itself is not the same.
    • Informative x 2
  14. ChelG

    ChelG Well-Known Member

    Homophobia has different vibes from 90s England to America too. My parents didn't disapprove of gay people at all, but they simply never mentioned the possibility to me, and when I first picked up on it it was at school from kids who thought it was gross and funny and teachers who thought it was rude to talk about, so I wound up under the impression that gay people existing was some kind of horrible secret. No one outright told me homosexuality was wrong, though, and as I said, the adults involved didn't think it was wrong to be, at least not to the "mortal sin" extent, just not polite to discuss in front of kids. Which is also bad, as I described above!
    • Informative x 3
    • Agree x 1
  15. LadyNighteyes

    LadyNighteyes Wicked Witch of the Radiant Historia Fandom

    While it isn't in canon, there's also a non-negligible sliver of the Harry Potter fandom that's basically narratively kinking on nobility and aristocracy via the whole Pureblood thing, and their fanon sometimes radiates out. There's a lot of people writing Magically-Enforced Marriages To A Suitable Partner For The Good Of The Bloodline, and that can, for pretty obvious reasons, come with some very particular weird attitudes about sex.
    • Agree x 6
    • Informative x 3
  16. turtleDove

    turtleDove Well-Known Member

    I'm not sure that I'd describe Lavender, Pansy, and Parvati as stupid. (Although Pansy automatically gets slotted into 'evil' anyways, Because Slytherin.) But Lavender and Parvati are definitely characterized as airheaded and "fluffy", which often reads as being the same thing as stupid. Lavender, especially, is also characterized as being gullible, which also often gets interpreted as being the same thing as stupid.

    I would, personally, argue that Lavender isn't particularly gullible; every instance of her believing something the Golden Trio disagree with or that the reader knows isn't true is one where authorities she trusts to be telling the truth are saying something different. She defends Lockhart, yeah - but one of the points is that no one knows he's crafted his reputation by theft. She also defends Trelawny and Divination, but most of that is her arguing with Hermione about it from what I recall - and Lavender's being told by Trelawny that she might be good at this, while Hermione's openly dismissive of the whole concept before the first class even finishes. She also believes the Ministry, rather than Harry, to start with when it comes to Voldemort being back...but that's at a point when she would have had no reason to suspect that the Ministry would actually lie about something like that.

    She also, after all, joins the D.A. club and works to support Hagrid and Trelawny where she can. She might not believe that Harry's telling the truth about Voldemort being back, but I think she does believe that he genuinely wants everyone to know how to properly defend themselves. She trusts authority figures to be honest and truthful (and, generally, probably trusts that they'll be fair), but that's not a flaw - it's a sign that she's never had that trust abused, the way Harry has for his whole life. And when the evidence points that her trust is misplaced, she re-evaluates things.
    • Informative x 4
    • Agree x 3
  17. turtleDove

    turtleDove Well-Known Member

    Belatedly: I'm not trying to argue that you're wrong that the books do have a running theme best described as "being femme or interested in boys (or daring to be both at once) is a sign of a deep character flaw unless you happen to be already described as Very Smart, or Very Cool, or you happen to be interested in a boy who is appropriate for your status as determined by the author". It definitely does have that theme! I just also think that the books themselves are wrong for trying to pigeonhole anyone (but especially those three) into that theme.
    • Agree x 3
    • Like x 2
  18. TheSeer

    TheSeer 37 Bright Visionary Crushes The Doubtful

    Yeah, when Harry was ten, that kind of "eww, girls" undertone was funny. A few books later... less so.
    • Agree x 7
  19. ChelG

    ChelG Well-Known Member

    (Referring back to my mention of Redwall, their time-period-appropriate attitudes would be more likely to be like this, if anything. Unlike the 90s, I didn't experience those, though.)
    • Informative x 2
  20. Everett

    Everett local rats so small, so tiny

    1. Saw a summary where the author said "don't worry, this one isn't in second person" and am too much of a homestuck to not be a little offended at the implication that second person is bad

    2. Does this break the TOS and should someone tell them that

    Screenshot_20201225-224403_Samsung Internet.jpg
    • Agree x 3
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