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middle finger: out

i am forcibly bullied off of fanfiction dot net
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Inspired by some posts I saw today: 

When I joined fandom in 1995, we had usenet, which was pre-world-wide-web, but was basically a nonthreaded messageboard. Usenet and email lists were the only way we had of distributing fanfic digitally at the time, and I hung out on both, but both were split up by fandom – you had two usenet groups for X-Files, a mailing list for Due South, et cetera. By the time I went to college three years later, the web existed for most of us and was accessible, so we also had archives, but all of the archives had started out as ways of storing fanfic posted to usenet (Gossamer, an extensive x-files archive, is an example). 

You could also put up a personal archive at geocities or tripod or angelfire, which were the precursors to “build it yourself” sites like Wordpress and Squarespace, in that you had to hand-code all your html or build it in programs like DreamWeaver. Once you had put up a fansite, you could join a “web ring” which was a bit like a friendslist only there was no post aggregator – you had to visit each site of the ring in turn in order to see your friends’ sites. Web rings were really more so that once you found ONE fansite in a fandom, you could go to all the rest as well. They weren’t for the webrings’ actual members. And unless you were super fancy at coding, people would have to email you if they wanted to leave feedback. 

So when I went to college in 1998 and essentially dropped out of fandom (because college), the closest thing to AO3 that existed was a single-fandom archive where you could only get your fic uploaded by contacting the owner of the archive and asking to add it, or being contacted by them to see if they could (Gossamer actually was an exception, it auto-archived any fic posted to alt.tv.x-files.creative).

It was much more likely you’d just have a fanpage you owned and maintained, and you’d post fanfic there, and then you’d send out an email announcement to your readers. Using a mailing list that you probably kept stored in a text file because contact lists in email wasn’t really a thing yet. 

In 2003, five years later, I came back to fandom because I started re-reading the Discworld books and wrote a bit of fanfic for them, and I googled “where to post discworld fanfic” because I just didn’t know anymore.

(Things that also didn’t exist when I left fandom: Google, in any meaningful sense. We used Dogpile or Altavista or Yahoo.)

I had thought I was going to have to build a fanpage and then find a mailing list or a messageboard to post to in order to get the word out, but what I found was fanfiction.net.

Now, FFN is a pit, don’t get me wrong. But in 2003 it was also revolutionary, one of the only archives of its kind and certainly the only one with any significant population of fans. AO3 didn’t exist. Neither did Dreamwidth or Tumblr. LiveJournal was invite-only. I got a LiveJournal account by begging an invite code off someone who left nice comments for me on FFN. And in 2003, in particular, it took a long time to realize FFN was a difficult, terrible place; back then the “no adult material” was basically a show-rule nobody followed, and if you were in a civil fandom like Discworld was (and continues to be) it was quite a pleasant place. 

AO3 was a leap forward. The user interface is so much better and it’s a smooth-functioning site which allows for adult material, easy tag searching, custom skins, and fast downloading. But I have fond memories of FFN, because when it first appeared, it was the only one of its kind, and a multifandom archive was pivotal in bringing fandoms together in a way nothing else up to that point had been. Before FFN and LiveJournal, multifandom gatherings were almost exclusively contained to conventions and meetups, which were expensive, tough to get to, impossible for kids to attend without alerting their parents to their fannish ways, and tended to be exclusive of – well, from what I’ve heard, any fan who wasn’t a middle-aged white male or spouse thereof. Panfandom mailing lists didn’t really exist; I think we would have seen them as weird, because to our minds we didn’t really have anything in common. We were fans of X; why would we hang out with fans of Y? Fannish culture did exist in the macro sense but a lot of us weren’t conscious of it, even when we moved from one fandom to another. 

I guess what I want to say is that the history of where we are today doesn’t begin with FFN or LJ or any of the other early-millennium hellsites, obviously. But in the history of fandom they are one spot that the big obelisk from 2001: A Space Odyssey would show up. And I thought it might be interesting for kids who came into fandom with AO3 already established would like to hear about the earlier days. 
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I know discourse is the word of choice in fandom nowadays but I kind of wish we would have stuck with “fandom wank” because it carries the implication that the anger involved culminated into effectively nothing and that the act was wholeheartedly masturbatory in nature rather than for any greater cause.

I saw this post about an hour after I saw a post that said, essentially, “There should be a word for that thing where [exactly describes ‘squeeing’].”

I feel like the time has come to produce something like this:

citrus 

@vergess

Squee: The noise you make when something is so good that all you can really do is squeak or squeal. A high pitched sound of delight, often accomanied by hugging yourself or others.

Squick: A fic/art/concept/topic that is repellent to you, so you reject association with it and instead retreat to your personal comfortable spaces- all the while remembering that someone else’s comfort is not your own.

YKINMKATO: Also called “kink tomato.” Abbreviation meaning “your kink is not my kink, and that’s okay.” Used to explain why you are rejecting art or fic brought to you by someone else. A solid mantra to recall instead of sending flames in people’s comments

Flames: The comment equivalent of anon hate.

AMV: “animated music video” or “anime music video.” Often, this is stylized to fit a specific fandom, such as a “PMV” (pony music video) in my little pony. May also be referred to as a lyricstuck.

Filk: Combination of the words “film” and “folk,” this is a music genre, to which “fan songs” and “fan parody covers” belong. If you don’t really understand what this means, take a quick listen to American Pie, then compare Weird Al Yankovic’s Saga Begins

BNF: Big name fan. You know that one person who is just so fuckign popular in your fandom? Their art is always on your dash, everyone knows their fics? Being spoken to directly by them is basically being noticed by everyone ever’s senpai? That’s what these people are called.

DL:DR; Not unliked the teal deer (tl;dr, or “too long, didn’t read”), DLDR means “don’t like? Don’t read!” It’s a reminder that you are under no obligation, ever, to expose yourself to uncomfortable (or, squicky), or potentially harmful (or, triggering), material. Not ever. If you don’t actively like something? It’s not worth your time. Skip it.

Gen: or “genfic” “genart” etc. Fan works which contain no or very little romantic content. Often these are styled after the canon material, and may be called “episodic” ro “slice of life” in addition. 

Lemon: Work containing strong pornographic elements

Lime, or Citrus: Work containing mild or implicit pornographic elements

Sockpuppeting: The surprisingly common scenario of someone making a bunch of fake accounts/sideblogs to send themselves reviews or hate, to try to increase views or drama surrounding a work. The accounts they make are called Sockpuppets. 

WAFF: Warm and fluffy feelings. A genre of fic that exists just to be therapeutically sweet. Nowadays, usually just called “fluffy.”

Schmoop: Take WAFF and somehow make it even more syrupy. You’ll know it when you see it.

Whump: Imagine if you will, a hurt-comfort fic. The comfort might be considered WAFF. The hurt? That’s the whump.

Wapanese: When white autors pepper their anime fanfic with random, tonally inappropriate japanese words. 

Anthropomorfic: Nowadays we just call these “humanstuck” or “humanized AU.”

Wank: Wildly disproportionate drama that crops up because someone wrote/drew/did something that someone else didn’t like. Seriously, I cannot begin to express the fiascos that have come about from all this. Just… Just go look at this.

 Plot bunny: Story ideas that you probably won’t ever actually deal with, but that multiply entirely out of control, creating huge worlds in your head that you’re probably not going to write. But hey! You might! And until then they make great sideblogs/askblogs/tumblr posts.

Casefic: Fanfics that try to create an episode-like feel for procedural and crime dramas, moster of the week shows, etc.

Jossed: When popular fan theories and fanon are addressed in the canon of a series, and whoops, turns out we were all very, very wrong.

Kripked: When popular fan theories and fanon are addressed in the canon of a show and, hot damn, we fucking called it.

Secret Masters: The people who run the websites/ communities/etc that we all do our fanning on. Less relevant now that we have things like tumblr, but when everyone had to run their own archival and social sites for each fandom, it was more important to pay our respects to the strange and powerful beings that brought us all together and gave us our fannish homes. Think the staff of AO3, for example.

Bashing: When a writer purposefully writes a specific character as a horrible, horrible person so that they can throw them out of the storyline, usually to allow their OTP to get together without trouble. Distinct from fridging in that it doesn’t require the character to die, but rather to be such a screaming harpy that they get rightfully removed from the main characters’ lives for being an abusive hell beast. Generally, a type of character hate. Be wary of people who bash women, queer people, and POC with consistency: they are not safe to be around.

‘Squick’ also has an alternate horrible meaning for Harry Potter fans who were in fandom a while back. Dear god.

Also:

Purple prose: Fic that is excessively flowery and complicated. Basically the “me, an intellectual” meme. If it has the phrase “cerulean orbs” you know it’s purple prose.

Beige prose: The opposite of purple prose. Basically, the plainest (and, if done wrongly, the most boring) type of prose.

R&R: Read & review. Back from when fic comments were called “reviews” and there was no such fucking thing as the kudos button.

I don’t know if it ever got used outside of one particular small fandom I was in, but I’ve always been fond of TFWIC: “the fuckwits in charge” aka the show writers. Who, as you may guess, consistently made frustrating writing decisions (and yet we kept coming back for more).

TPTB (“The Powers That Be”) can also refer collectively to the show’s creators (especially for shows that don’t have a single prominent creator or show runner) and/or the network/production execs overseeing the show. Example: “TPTB wouldn’t let Xena and Gabrielle be in lesbians with each other, but calling each other ‘soul mate’ was apparently fine.”
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You’re welcome.

(ps. ratings and tags are from the authors, so don’t blame me if there isn’t sex in Adult rated fic)

…And A Bottle of Rum by Cynthia (1984)

Adult (NC-17), Established relationship, Bondage

A Change of Season by Charlotte Frost (1988)

 All Audiences, Established Relationship

A Light in the Darkness by Debbie C (late 80’s)

Adult (NC-17), Action/Plot

A Matter of Seduction by Sharon Pillsbury  (1989)

Adult (NC-17), First Time, Dubious consent

A Place of Red by Dovya Blacque (1987)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

A Private Obsession by CatalenaMara (1987)

Mature content (Teen)

A Shot in the Dark by Dana Austin Marsh (1994)

Adult (NC-17), Established relatioship, Humor

About Time by J S Cavalcante (1993)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

All That We Shall Be by Anna S Greener (2000)

Adult (NC-17), Angst, Established Relationship

All This Time by M E Carter (1999)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

And Our Tomorrows by Cynthia (1994)

 Adult (NC-17), Angst, First Time

Babes in the Woods by Dana Austin Marsh (1998)

Adult (NC-17), Action/Plot, Established Relationship

Belial by Mary Kay (1987)

Adult (NC-17), Action/PLot

Beyond Setarcos by GayleF (1978)

Adult (NC-17)

Bitter Glass by Killa (1996)

Mature Content (Teen), Angst, Character Study, Major character death

Brief Encounter by Amanda Warrington (1992)

Adult (NC-17), AU-ish, First Time

By The Book by Dana Austin Marsh (1994)

Adult (NC-17), Established relationship, Humor

Certainties of Being by M E Carter (1995)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

Contemplations by Charlotte Frost (1988)

ADULT (NC-17), Established Relationship

Convalescing by Charlotte Frost (1987)

ADULT (NC-17), Established Relationship, Hurt/Comfort, Hurt!Spock

Cover of Night by Killa (1998)

ADULT (NC-17), Angst, Erotica, First Time, Romance

Cries of the Children by Debbie C (1988)

All audiences, Pre-slash, Action/Plot

Desert Heat by Gayle F (1976)

Adult (NC-17), Angst, First Time

Echoes by Dovya Blacque (1985)

All audiences, First Time

Enterprising Tours by Dana Austin Marsh (1994)

Adult (NC-17), Humor

Fairy Tale Dreams by Dana Austin Marsh (1994)

Adult (NC-17), Pon farr, Humor

From Rags To Riches by Dana Austin Marsh (1998)

All audiences, First Time, Humor

From The Fields by Dovya Blacque (1984)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

Full Circle by Killa (1997) sequel to Turning Point by Killa (1995)

(TP) Adult (NC-17), Angst

(FC) Adilt (NC-17), Angst, Established relationship

Gentleness by Charlotte Frost (1986)

Mature content (Teen), Established relationship

Getting What You Wished For by Dana Austin Marsh (1998)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

Green Eyed Monster by Mary Kay (1987)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

Have Another Good Night! by KS TLan (1980)

Adult (NC-17), First Time, Dubious Consent

He Who Waits by Mara Lyn Cade (1987)

Adult (NC-17), Bottom!Spock, Bondage

Joyboy by Syn Ferguson (1988)

 Adult (NC-17), AU, Action/Plot, Angst, Character Study, First Time, Hurt/Comfort, Underage sexuality

Little Sorrows by Dovya Blacque

Adult (NC-17), Angst, First Time

Lotions And Potions, Etc. by Dana Austin Marsh (1996)

Mature content (Teen), Crack, Established relationship, Sex toys

Meat Dreams by J S Cavalcante (1994)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

Memories by Debbie C (1988)

Adult (NC-17), Angst, Major Character Death

Never and Always Lovers: A Ni-Var for Two Apart by Carolyn Spencer (1997)

Poetry, All audiences, Pre-Slash, Character study

Night of the Dragon by Gayle F (1978)

Adult (NC-17), Angst, Established relationship

Nightvisions by Carol A Frisbie, Susan K James (1979)

Adult (NC-17), Angst, First Time

Nothing To Sneeze At by Dana Austin Marsh (1993)

All audiences, Humor

Of Dark Places by Mary Kay (1987)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

Of Peacefulness, Happiness and Forgiveness by Charlotte Frost (1986)

Adult (NC-17), Established relationship

Out of the Big Black (series) by Rae Trail (1999-2004)

Adult (NC-17), Crossover TNG/TOS, Established relationship. Action/Plot

Parted From Me by Dana Austin Marsh (1992)

 Adult (NC-17), Major Character death, Action/Plot, Angst, Established Relationship

Permutations by Dana Austin Marsh (1993)

Mature content (Teen), Humor, Established relationship

Portraits by Charlotte Frost (1990)

Adult (NC-17), Action/Plot, Angst, First Time, Hurt/Comfort

Poses (1977) by Leslie Fish sequel to Shelter (1976)by Leslie Fish

(Shelter) Adult (NC-17), Non-con, First Time

(Poses) Adult (NC-17), Angst

Prisoners by KS TLan (1982)

Adult (NC-17), Dubious consent, First Time

Private Moments by Charlotte Frost (1987)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

Proximity Breeds Contretemps by Dana Austin Marsh (1995)

Adult (NC-17), Humor

Re-Emergence by CatalenaMara (1983)

Poetry, All audiences, Character Study, Pre-Slash

Ritual Cleansing by KS TLan (1980)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

Rumour Has It by Dana Austin Marsh (1994)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

Shared Spaces by Dana Austin Marsh (1990)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

Sharing the Risk by Killa (1998)

Adult (NC-17), Angst, First Time

Sharing the Sunlight (Series) by Jenna Sinclair (1991-2005)

Adult (NC-17), First Time, Established relationship, Angst, Humor

Strong Medicine by Killa (1998)

Adult (NC-17), PWP, Established relationship

Surrender by Killa (1997)

Adult (NC_17), Angst, Hurt/Comfort, Bondage, Dominance/submission, Dubious consent, Non-consensual sex

Technical Hitch by KS TLan (late 90’s)

Adult (NC-17), PWP

Tenants of the Heart by Carleen (1992)

Adult (NC-17), Pon Farr, First Time

The Birthday Two-Step by Dana Austin Marsh (1994)

Adult (NC-17), Humor

The Blending of Two by Charlotte Frost (1989)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

The Deep End of Emotion by Dana Austin Marsh (1999)

Adult (NC-17), Pon Farr, First Time

The Diver by Carolyn Spencer (1995)

Adult (NC-17), Angst, Character Study, First Time

The Faces of Love by Charlotte Frost (1988)

All audiences, Angst, Character Study, Established relationship

The Hustler by Courtney Gray (1981)

Adult (NC-17), AU-ish, Prostitution, First Time

The Image of Perfection by Debbie C (1991)

Adult (NC-17), Action/Plot

The Kiss by Amanda Warrington (1994)

Adult (NC-17), Action/Plot, Angst, First Time

The Misunderstanding by Debbie C (1988)

Adult (NC-17), First Time, Action/Plot

The Need For Stars by Carolyn Spencer (1993)

Adult (NC-17), Angst, Established relationship

The Omni by Dana Austin Marsh (1989)

Adult (NC-17), Established relationship

The Only Way by KS TLan (1982)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

The Power of Suggestion by Dana Austin Marsh (1997)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

The Price (1981) by Syn Ferguson prequel to Courts of Honor by Syn Ferguson

(The Price) Adult (NC-17), Action/Plot, Angst, First Time, Hurt/Comfort, Hurt!Spock, Pon Farr, Explicit violence, Rape

(Courts of Honor) Adult (NC-17), Action/Plot, Angst, Established Relationship, Hurt/Comfort

The Tie That Binds by Dana Austin Marsh (1999)

Adult (NC-17), Angst, Established Relationship, Kolinahr, Pon Farr

The Tribble With Troubles by Dana Austin Marsh (1999)

Adult (NC-17), Established relationship, Crack

The Vacation by Rae Trail (1999)

Adult (NC-17), Established relationship

The Vigil by Debbie C (1991)

All audiences, Pre-slash

The Word Withheld by J S Cavalcante (2000)

Adult (NC-17), First Time

Unto Harvest in Fullness of Time by M E Carter (1999)

Mature content (Teen), Established relationship

Vigil by CatalenaMara (1985)

Poetry, All audiences

When the Cat’s Away by Dana Austin Marsh (1994)

Adult (NC-17), Established relationship

(Tell me if the links are’t working)

WHERE HAS THIS BEEN ALL MY LIFE

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