Friday, July 12, 2013

Fanfiction Done Right Take One

A few weeks ago, I ranted about why fan fiction is not the evil that many writers and literary critiques make it out to be. That being said, it has the potential to be. Without careful consideration for the rules of good writing, Fanfiction can be the worst thing on the planet. I have compiled a list of rules for would-be fan fiction writers so that they do not fall into the trap.

Now, I should warn you dear readers, even though I am a big supporter of the fan fiction community, I can be a HUGE fan fiction snob. I often find myself having a little twitch and muttering bad writing. As a personal preference I tend to dislike OCs, Crossovers and lemons. That being said, I still think that with the right writer, these three things can be done well.

Without further adue, her are some of  my rules for great Fanfiction:


Despite what my previous rambling suggests, I do not completely hate OCs or "original characters". I am simply jaded by the fact that some of these characters are Mary Sues:  flat, cliché, self inserts with little or no character development outside of a romantic involvement with the main world's characters, and even this seems to come out of nowhere.

So the question is, how can an OC become an effective character and not drag your Fanfiction down?


  • Create a character sketch outlining character traits and plot movement
  • Avoid Self Inserts
  • Think about how cannon characters would react normally to a character like yours
  • Do research about the world and time a character will reside in
  • Don't put all the focus on the OC
  • Don't put the OC in a romantic relationship with a character who has one in cannon without it being plausible
  • Don't put yourself in the story
  • Don't have a huge list describing ocs at the beginning, the reader should be able to gather everything from the text itself.

Romantic Relationships and Lemons

I am not a huge fan of romance fics, although I do love a good Sasuke/Naruto. This is do in part to a lack of character development or realism. I have read some good romance fan fictions and this is what I have learned from them.
  • Do think about how the cannon character reacts to others, remember that Vegeta is probably not going to be sweet and mushy and characters that never interact in cannon or not likely to fall instantly in love
  • Do be tasteful, remember that there are many sites out there for more adult Fanfiction. If you are not posting on one of those sites, adhere to Fanfiction ratings
  • NEVER EVER write incest if it is not cannon. That's disrespectful to the author
  • DO post warnings at the top of a story or chapter if you are writing something explicit (heavy lemon, incest, pederasty). nobody wants to walk in on something like that without warning
  • Do take time to develop the relationship so that it is believable

Other Regulations

  • Be consistent with the lingo, if you are going to use Japanese honorifics or terminology, use it throughout the story.
  • Please copyedit and proofread. I often forget to do this and it drags a story down.
  • Author's notes, while useful, should not take up a whole story. This is against Fanfiction site rules and comes off as unprofessional.
  • Don't react violently to criticism. It is meant to help you grow as a writer.
That's all for now. I leave you with a link to a fan fiction that I feel follows the rules very well. It is not my own and I have never personally met the author. I am, however, very impressed by the scale of the story and the skill its author possesses.

justplainrii: I applaud you for your skill and hope to see even better things to come.

The story is called In the Blood and can be found here:

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