The Book Burning That Wasn’t
The ‘book burning that wasn’t’… this weekend marked a boycott of FF.NET where my interest in writing began. In the last two years, a ‘purge’ of 10’s of thousands, maybe 100’s of thousands of stories has occurred, causing mass deletions of stories, an incalculable loss of creativity for those authors affected.
I continue to write ‘fan fiction‘ as a way to practice my craft and develop a fan base. As my stories are precisely the ones targeted I’ve moved them to a more ‘friendly’ site as well as my own blog and I am humbled by the fans who have moved with me. I am saddened by the self-righteous witch hunts that continue on FF.NET and the damage that it has caused.
The Huffington Post Article this post is named for hints at some of the issues. But for those of us who have been facing it for years, it goes much deeper. It is more than FF.NET deciding to once again enforce it’s rules and regulations. As I’ve said before, while they may be stated, they have gone unenforced for so long as to be meaningless. And instead of FF.NET admin actually doing the enforcement, they allow small, self-appointed groups of censors to do their work for them. And all of this is done without recourse to the author who is impacted.
So I tip my hat to sites like An Archive of Our Own (AO3) that welcomes authors of all sorts… those that write G rated stuff to those that write straight out erotica. And what I have found is that the quality of writing is about three steps above what I have found in FF.NET. Grammar, story-telling, characterization are all far and above what I have seen on any other fan fiction sites. I encourage you to explore your favorite fandoms on AO3. You don’t need an invite to check things out or to leave Kudos. Find out for yourself!
What do you think of what has gone on over at FF.net? Have any of your favorite stories been impacted? Will your behavior in reading fan fiction change? Will you still routinely go to ff.net or will you seek out other avenues instead? Thoughts?