I’ve always been a bit bothered by another M/M Romance author’s bit of advice that given to me during a chat. The advice was basically this: Don’t tell anyone you wrote fanfiction.
Now, as an M/M Romance author who got started in this business by writing Fullmetal Alchemist fanfiction and has used this fact as much as possible to let my fanfiction readers know that – hey, I have some original published stories, too, and they’re a lot better than the fanfiction stories – I can’t let myself really believe this is good advice. It seems to me if someone likes your fanfiction stories, then they’d probably like your original published stories, which are quite often a hell of a lot more polished and professionally edited. For me, I look at the fanfiction as fun free reads. And I loved writing them. I got to have fun with someone else’s characters and quite frankly, the whole episode taught me a ton about how to write and what readers wanted to read.
And to tell you the truth? I’m proud of my fanfiction stories. Sure, there was a lot of head hopping, typos and the like. But people expect that sort of thing in fanfiction. Sometimes, I almost feel as if there’s a lot more freedom in fanfiction. I can test a few things out and see if I’m wacked for writing something like that or maybe it’s the best idea ever. (I’m liking that term, best XXX ever lately, LOL).
We as published writers need to promote about as much as we need to write good stories and to think we shouldn’t use that avenue of ourselves to promote our work just seems… wrong. I know I’ve read some pretty damn good fiction on fanfiction.net and adultfanfiction.net. So to think that all that literature out there on those sites is bad writing, well, I don’t subscribe to that view. And if you’re a published author and want to write a bit of it for fun, why not? And why not promote it as yours?
What do you think? How do you other authors feel about this issue? And yep, if you look to the right there in my links, you’ll find my fanfiction.net site and can read all my fanfiction stories if you’re so inclined:)