"Of course it's happening inside your head, Harry. Why should that mean that it is not real?"
~Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows, by JK Rowling.
My fanfic mantra.
I have always written fanfiction. It's the best possible way to keep a story alive. Even when the charcters are of my own creation. I will write a scene, rewrite it, and write it again with a new twist, or a different outcome. I am forever loyal to those potent characters that make fanfiction so compelling.
In my efforts to flesh out my own original fiction, I find that I "write" stories with favorite characters all of the time (in my head). I use it as a means to keep a storyline going when my own plotlines with my own characters sputter to a halt. My character obsessions tend to gravitate toward alpha males (or to the ones that could evolve into alphas). Perhaps I have an unfulfilled quest in my own life. Except that I'm not male. Perhaps it's simply because the alpha males are the leaders, the strong ones, the heroes. And they're usually the most misunderstood, the most complex, and the most tragic. And therefore, they are most fascinating and meaningfully contemplated.
I'm someone who retains fictitious characters on the brain long after the story is over. I'll keep favorite characters in my head for years, actually. Certain types, usually male for some reason, just plain embed themselves in my mind. My imagination usually takes them on journeys of my own creation that run in the background while real life goes on around me. My sources are books, television and film. And the more accessible my favorite characters become via internet and digital communication, the better my inner world gets.
I've written about discovering fanfiction on my fanfic blog, The Fan Fiction Review. It was quite a delight to discover that I am not nearly as unique (for lack of a better word than strange) as I've always believed myself to be. Other people have the same inability to let go of characters that I do! Sweet! I personally have only read Harry Potter fanfiction because there's just not enough time in the day to get to the other options.
My own fanfiction creations usually stayed in my head, until last fall, when I finally posted a story on fanfiction.net under the name of cre8tvdeb. My first officially offered story was called Failure To Thrive, and when I reread it now, can see how difficult it was at first to let go of my own self-imposed taboo about fanfiction. But I got feedback, and it was very addictive. So I tried a second story, and then a third, and had an absolute blast.
My obsession seems to be cyclical as well, and I write my own fanfic in my head accordingly. I will cycle through Joss Whedon's Angel every couple of years and it never gets old, but his style of angst and tragedy becomes too negative after a while. His characters struggle with conflict incessantly, which I love to indulge until my own desire for resolution in a storyline inevitably takes over. I'll visit the Nash Bridges Universe to rekindle the familiarity of San Francisco. And then I'll move on to Star Trek, both original cast and the newly casted adventures by JJ Abrams.
My favorite Potent Characters, not necessarily in order of preference (since that changes frequently):
- Harry Potter, Severus Snape, Remus Lupin, Lucius Malfoy, of the Harry Potter Universe
- Spike, Wesley Windham Price, and Angel, all of the Joss Whedon Universe Nash Bridges,
- Harvey Leek, Evan Cortez, Joe Dominguez of the Nash Bridges Universe ,
- Captain Kirk, Spock, Dr. McCoy of the Star Trek Universe
- Dakota Craig, Halpern Ensohn, Morgan Christopher, and LizBeth Bryant of Participants of the Project, a creative enDEBers Universe (my own characters, whom I happily introduce through The INCE Trilogy).
And now that I've compiled the list... yes, they are mostly male. Hmmm.
Creating fanfiction is a way of life. As far as I'm concerned, my characters are always in motion. I'm always playing with them in my head, and I'm happy to share their antics. If you would like to check out the creative enDEBers Universe, start with Participants of the Project, available at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle, but also at several Independent Booksellers (click).