Tom Andry

Novelist, Podcaster, Audio Nut, Father (not in that order)

FanFic

March 1st, 2011

In the history of me, I’ve never read a word of a FanFic (fan fiction). I’ve made fun of it from time to time because it is an easy target but I’ve never partaken. Not fair of me, granted, but I’ve never claimed to be a saint. What brought this up was that I was on an author site (Jim Butcher) because I am reading one of this books. I came across this in the FAQ section:

Q. Will you look at my fanfic?
A. No. If Jim did, he’d have to recognize that it exists, legally, and take action against it.

Okay, so the inference is that FanFic is illegal but Butcher isn’t going to stop it. So I did some research. While FanFic’ers will decry the notion, the characters and situations in a book do seem to be protected under copyright laws. Regardless, authors seem to have the battered wife ability to pursue or not based on whim or fancy. An interesting note is that J.K. Rowlings lets most FanFic go unless it is pornographic in nature. I understand that. It makes sense.

So, while I’m under no illusions that Bob and other characters will spawn and army of FanFic’ers, I wanted to set down some ground rules just in case. This is probably going to be my position on any of the stuff I write. So here it goes. If you want to write a FanFic I only ask that:

  • You let me know where it is posted and allow me to re-post it here if I like it. And yes, this is a good way to get links back to your site.
  • You be respectful of the characters. Try to keep them true to their nature.
  • While I don’t enjoy writing sex, you might. If you’re going to, no rape/incest/weird stuff. This goes back to respecting the characters.
  • No making money off it.

If I read something and it is truly offensive, I’ll let you know. I’m sure we can work it out. If not, I guess we’ll have to look into that lawyer thing. Other authors, what do you think about FanFic? Sure, most of it (from what I’ve heard) is dreck but surely something out there doesn’t suck. To me, every comic book writer that picks up a comic like Spiderman or Batman is just a FanFic’er. So there’s that.

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Posted in FanFic.

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