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Some Thoughts on Fandom, Privacy, Money, and Other Stuff - Mo's Journal — LiveJournal
July 25th, 2008
09:57 am

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Some Thoughts on Fandom, Privacy, Money, and Other Stuff

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From:wneleh
Date:July 26th, 2008 12:47 am (UTC)
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Hmm, maybe I'm more thinking about the advantages vs. disadvantages of merging IDs.

It's a fun hobby and it's fun to talk about with people who are interested. If they're not interested they don't ask questions about it, but if you don't tell them you're doing it, they don't get an opportunity to ask questions.

I've recently very verbal about fanfic in social spheres - well, practically in every RL interaction except for work - for this reason. The work/life barrier was constructed back when I was working very few hours/week, so that I could actually get stuff done. Now that's not so much of an issue.

I think I'm really good at writing fanfic. I'm proud of it and I want to talk about it for that reason.

I don't think I'm as good, plus I worry about people reading more than I mean them to into my fic. On the up side, I've found that people in general aren't that interested in reading much unless they're into fanfic already.

I've put in personal ads that I write slash. I do that because I don't want to date someone who's squicked by the idea. More generally, being open about being fannish prevents hearing a lot of negative stuff about being fannish.

Yeah, I can see that! (C is fannish himself, and facilitates my interests as much as he can, as I do his.)

The old Twain thing - "If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything."

Very true.

I don't see any particular advantages (or disadvantages) to society in greater openness, but I don't really see this as a societal issue. I really do see it as just a hobby that some think is odd.

I do, for a couple of reasons.

(1) It's frustrating when I encounter people who have no idea whatsoever what fanfic is. This is different than the other nouns I'm into - Patrick O'Brian, Tiger Woods, issues surrounding childrearing.

(2) I think slash (and explicit het, for that matter) says something very interesting about women's sexuality, something that I'd like more Great Minds tossing around.

(3) I think greater knowledge of fanfic would get more talented people writing; and some of those people might even write some schoppy smarm. And that would make me very happy.

Editing to add - in order for (1)-(3) to happen, we need a public face for fanfic that's not solely 17 and male or 12 and female...

- Helen



Edited at 2008-07-26 12:51 am (UTC)
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From:mofic
Date:July 26th, 2008 01:33 am (UTC)
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Hmm, maybe I'm more thinking about the advantages vs. disadvantages of merging IDs.

I didn't get that - although someone else in this thread did.

I don't really merge ids. I do like having a pseudonym (although I really wish I'd chosen a different one). I just don't hesitate to link my fannish activity to the rest of my life. I have the url for this journal in my email sig, for example (although with the proviso that it's mostly fannish - it sometimes gets people to ask me what "fannish" means).

It occurs to me that there are really two different questions here -

1. Are you reluctant to let people in fandom know your real name?

2. Are you reluctant to let people in your non-fannish life know about your fannish activities?

I think reluctance on #1 is often for fear that it would lead to people in the non-fannish life finding out about fannish activities, but there might be other reasons as well...

I'm interested in your reasons 1-3 at the bottom. Comments:

1. You're into Tiger Woods?!?!?! Seriously, I don't get frustrated by this. I feel like I spend a lot of my life explaining things about me - what I do for a living, how do lesbians have children, why lack of legal recognition of same sex marriage is bad for me and my family, etc. I'm pretty good at explanations and I'm willing to add fanfic - and slash - to the Things I Explain list. It's not frustrating to me, it just is.

2. I think there's a lot of interesting stuff to be learned from getting Great Minds to think and talk about fanfic in general and slash in particular. I'm with you there. The more people thinking about this the better.

3. The more talented people writing fanfic the better, too. What's "schoppy" btw?

I don't know that we need a public face to make these things happen, though. I'm not against it; I just see 2 and 3 as not dependent on that.
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From:wneleh
Date:July 26th, 2008 03:00 pm (UTC)
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I do like having a pseudonym (although I really wish I'd chosen a different one).

Heh, I think Mo and Mofic are great tags, mostly because you are so *not* a Mo! Very much in the way I'm not a citrus Cthulu.

1. You're into Tiger Woods?!?!?! Seriously, I don't get frustrated by this. I feel like I spend a lot of my life explaining things about me - what I do for a living, how do lesbians have children, why lack of legal recognition of same sex marriage is bad for me and my family, etc. I'm pretty good at explanations and I'm willing to add fanfic - and slash - to the Things I Explain list. It's not frustrating to me, it just is.

You didn't know about the Tiger Woods thing??? Well, I guess it doesn't come up much on LE, APW, or LJ. But I pretty much watch whenever he's playing, I go to the local PGA tournament, I subscribe to an email list of TW-related clippings, I've read biographies, I have calendars... And I find that my fanning of Tiger is pretty universally understood. I'm not, perhaps, the most typical example of a TW fan, and perhaps TW fandom isn't what people most expect of me, but I don't have to explain who he is, or what golf is, or that, no, I really don't wish his wife ill. The only thing that really puzzles people is that I don't play golf.

I don't have to explain most of the stuff you do, most of the time. I mean, if we're talking work, I draw pictures sometimes, but I don't have to explain what engineering *is.* I have occasionally explained how lesbians have children :-) and the legal implications of marriage (and family structure in general) inequalities (and thanks for writing about this, it's helped!)

RE: Schoppy - I mean schloppy. Smarm. The stuff I love to read most, though it's not precisely what I write, most of the time (my Home might be the best example of my own smarm.)

RE: The public face thing - I'm not thinking so much that we need 'poster children;' but as long as the public perception is that fanfic is a tween-teen thing, I don't see how it can get the kind of analysis I'm interested in, and (much of) the type of new involvement I hope for.
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From:mofic
Date:July 28th, 2008 02:02 pm (UTC)
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I don't remember ever hearing you talk about Tiger Woods, but I tend to tune out when people talk sports so I can't swear to it.

I agree that it would be good to have more adults in fandom in general and fanfic (both writing and critiquing) in particular. I don't know that the public face is where we'll get them, though. It can't *hurt* to have a more public presence (and I think that OTW is a good step along that way) but I think that adults in fandom will continue to join in the two ways they have been:

- they were teens or young adults in fandom and they grew up (like you)
- they stumbled across it and liked it as adults (like me)
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