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September 2019
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Aerden [userpic]
On Fan Fiction

The ONTD (Oh No They Didn't) Community is discussing various fiction authors' opinions about the writing of fan fiction today. I'm not a member of the community, so I couldn't post there, but here are my feelings.

First off, I do write the occasional Harry Potter fan fiction story and the more frequent Pern one, so I can't exactly oppose it without being a hypocrite.

If I were a professionally-published author, it would disturb me greatly if fans wrote stories featuring my characters without my permission. There are some genres of fan fiction that I would be very offended to find my characters being used in.

I prefer Anne McCaffrey's approach: Use of my settings would be fine, but use of any of my characters would not at all be permitted. Only certain very close friends of mine, who have known me for years, would have permission to write my characters...That would be Viv, Anna, Hope, Dave, Suse, and Tricia. And there are only specific characters whom each of those friends would be appropriate for.

Except for Dave...I don't think Dave has ever read anything about my character Paul Graves, but I suspect he'd figure him out very quickly and would probably write him way better than I do. :)

Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative

all of this got stirred up by Fifty Shades of Grey. Frankly, I think it's all off limits to publish because those fictional places are copyrighted material! If it's a real place (like Forks, Washington, ala Twlight) that's a different story but things like Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings, shouldn't be allowed to be published unless it's written by the author.

I agree with you; the settings should be off-limits, too. But I grew up with McCaffrey not minding if her fans played in her world, as long as they left her characters alone, so that's become the ethic that's ingrained in me. And I can't inveigh strongly against using the author's characters when I have been somewhat guilty of doing that, myself. They are secondary characters in my stories, but still...I'd catch some flack.

When I first started participating in Potter-based roleplaying games, I never would play any of the canon characters because of McCaffrey. It took me a very long while to be persuaded to write Ron Weasley. And Snape, well, he proved irresistible.