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Huh. - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
According to isiscolo, it's "Declare Yourself A BNF" day. Who knew? I didn't even buy cards for the occasion. ;P

I don't declare myself a Big Name Fan. Even at the Quill, where I "live," I'd only put myself in the medium-name-fan category. People kinda sorta recognize my name because I'm a Big Mouth Fan, to use isiscolo's term (and of course, because I'm a forum ghostie), and I get a goodish number of reviews (I'm very proud of my 317 reviews on "Of A Sort," and 126 on the one-shot "Doll Army"--go, me), but I'm not one who gets quoted in "Favorite fanfic quotes" or anything. In the larger world... well, I can't even hit the double-digits in reviews for "Invisible" at FAP, and anything I've posted at the Pit for the last year has disappeared pretty quickly.

That's fair. I came late to the fandom (started in around the GoF release).

I used to be a medium-large size fan in Star Wars. I helped found the TFN archive and set its original rules, and I like to at least pretend to think that Father's Heart and Lady Vader got some seriously good play and influenced other writers, but pretty much the minute I stopped writing SW, I dropped off the map, which suggests I was pretty close to the edge, anyway. But I did have my site written up in the Star Wars Insider, so there! :) :sticks out tongue:

All that said, I certainly have no complaints about my "status" in either fandom. I have readers who enjoy my stories and come all the way over here and deal with slow-loading LJ to read them and listen to me ramble. Would I like it if Of A Sort or Lines of Descent or "The Doll Army"/"Your Very Own Dora" had the kind of fame that Draco Veritas or Pawn to Queen has? Yeah, probably. No lies there. Then again, I don't end up with slams at the big slam sites, which is a pleasant side-effect of being a mid-liner and canon-thumper. I don't have to maintain an elaborate website with forums where people question my editorial choices. I have good online friends whose posts I look forward to, and I can join (or not join) any online kerfluffle that I want (or don't want) without dragging BNF baggage into it.

It's good.

I declare myself a midliner fan.

I feel a bit...: complacent complacent

16 comments or Leave a comment
ashtur From: ashtur Date: June 23rd, 2004 06:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
Cheers from a SNF! (or would that be LNF?)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 23rd, 2004 10:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, definitely SNF. Vocalizes better. :)

persephone_kore From: persephone_kore Date: June 23rd, 2004 06:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
I don't know, you DID get one of your HPfics recced in Mid-Day article.... ;)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 23rd, 2004 10:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
But they didn't quote me at length like they did Cassie Claire!

:melodramatic swoon:

persephone_kore From: persephone_kore Date: June 24th, 2004 05:44 am (UTC) (Link)
...On review, the only byline I can find IS Cassie Claire. Huh. Granted she supplied most of the text involved, but does this mean she got the recs together or some mystery person did? Or am I just missing something?
krissielee From: krissielee Date: June 23rd, 2004 06:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yay for us MNFs!!!!!!
riah_chan From: riah_chan Date: June 23rd, 2004 07:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
You rock as any size of fan! I'm always surprised by what stories become super-popular because, to me, they are usually ones where the characters are OOC/cooler versions of themselves and don't work well with the cannon of the books. I much prefer your style of story... quite lovely.

myf From: myf Date: June 23rd, 2004 09:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
Isn't this fandom weird?

I agree that BNF status has less to do with talent and more to do with - probably - luck, self-promotion and faithful readers. Although I'm sure a healthy dash of controversy wouldn't hurt, either!

And heh - I'm a Fern fangirl too. I wish your stuff was more widely read than all of the BNF fics put together.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 23rd, 2004 10:12 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks, guys.

Honest, I wasn't so much complaining as... well, curious. I really kind of enjoy where I am, and I let my stories catch who they will. I do a lot more self-promotion than I'm comfortable with already (weird belief that if I have to do my own promotion, it's because the stories aren't good enough to walk around on their own two legs, which is silly, since stories don't have legs, but oh, well). But for faithful readers... wouldn't trade the ones I've got for anything.
silverhill From: silverhill Date: June 23rd, 2004 08:32 pm (UTC) (Link)
Bah! Your writing is so much better than stupid Draco Veritas and Pawn to Queen. Yuck! How crap like that gets a following I have no idea.

The stupid thing about BNFs is most of them don't deserve all that attention. They aren't bigger fans than everybody else, and they haven't done anything especially great.

Then there are BNFs like Lexicon founder Steve Vanderark (I think that's his name). Now he deserves to be a BNF -- because he made a worthwhile, unique contribution to the fandom.

But people who write crappy fanfics should not be celebrated as OMGliek the greatest fans evar!

fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 23rd, 2004 10:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
Bah! Your writing is so much better than stupid Draco Veritas and Pawn to Queen. Yuck! How crap like that gets a following I have no idea.

I admit, I didn't hate the scene from DV that was in the Mid-Day article. I also admit that I like some of my scenes better (the humongous bighead must do so). But it wasn't awful. I'm not moved to read the fic, as I don't especially care for Draco as a character and am not interested in reading a whole story about him, but the writing in that scene wasn't awful.

It's the "How does it get a following?" question that intrigues me. I know some things I write aren't likely to get a following (all original character stories, for instance), but the ones that do seem to "hit"... well, I'm never sure what it is. I never expected "Of A Sort" to have the following it does--it was just sort of a lark for me, to experiment with possible backstories. And the liking for "Shifts" here at Quibbles floors and humbles me; I never expected that to do better than a mild, "Hum, pretty good." It was huge in my head, but hey--it's a fic about Dudley's school, with Remus/Tonks subtext (which rapidly became maintext). I didn't pitch it that much (well, at least comparatively--I still feel pimpish about it). Fics I half-expected to have some following when I posted them (my Tolkien fics)--probably because of karmic reverberations or something--have next to none. I still have people clamoring for odd AUs I never finished in SW, but my own favorite of my SW stories, "The Flight to Rison's Deep," has only a small readership.

So the whole "getting a following" thing is a mystery to me, no matter what the quality of writing.

Then there are BNFs like Lexicon founder Steve Vanderark (I think that's his name). Now he deserves to be a BNF -- because he made a worthwhile, unique contribution to the fandom.

Oh, yeah. While I object to people treating the Lexicon as a higher authority than J.K. Rowling (the review I got saying that Rowling was wrong about the Weasley boys' ages because she contradicted the Lexicon), I think it's an incredibly good and useful resource, and it's so generous of him to do it, too!
mafdet From: mafdet Date: June 23rd, 2004 09:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
When I first arrived in the HP fandom I was bemused by the whole BNF concept. Like you, I was a late arriver. And the only other fandom I've ever been active in is the Earth's Children fandom which is tiny and obscure and has no BNF's.

I guess to me a "BNF" is someone whose stories I enjoy. You would be one of them. Especially considering that "your" Ted Tonks rates as One of the Fanfic Characters I'd Have In My Harem.

I have noticed, like the above poster, that quality of writing doesn't necessarily correlate with "fame" in the fandom. But heck, it doesn't correlate in published original fiction either! (glancing at NY Times Bestseller List) Such disconnects between fame and quality are hardly unique to fandom, or fiction, or even the written word for that matter. Look at all those famous movie stars who can't act, singers who rely on studio doctoring to sound decent and lip synch their songs live, etc.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: June 23rd, 2004 10:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
Snicker. I think I've started writing Ted to be an ideal harem member. Ted and Remus are my own two harem guys so far. Though I just started writing the '91 Sort, with the first section going to Neville, and I'm digging the idea of grown-up Neville just about now, too.
leelastarsky From: leelastarsky Date: June 24th, 2004 12:29 am (UTC) (Link)
I think I tend to be far too specialised to be a BNF in any either fandom (SW or HP). Plus I'm very new to HP. (It just dawned on my that I've been an 'obsessive' for HP for a year now!) The first time I looked at FA, I found it so big it was unfathomable to me. It also reminded me a lot of ff.n so I pretty much abandoned it on the spot.

But my fics were very well received in Han&Leia fandom and those were the fans whose opinion I cared about.

I've only written one fic so far in HP (actually I finished another one today!! YAY! Go me!), so it's probably a bit hard to tell, but I think I'll be running the Ron&Hermione road there. And, as they are simply a re-telling of H&L, it'll just be more of the same from me. :~D
From: 88l71 Date: June 24th, 2004 06:16 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm beginning to think in SW my "rep" in the fandom is somewhat like that line in this Motorhead song: "We are the ones you've heard of, but you've never heard" though I have something of a reputation as an action writer. (even though I write stuff that isn't action-oriented)

Now it's a far cry from the days when DOTF had 1300 posts on its thread...

From: lnevans Date: June 28th, 2004 06:37 am (UTC) (Link)
Actually, thanks to The Doll Army and My Very Own Dora (both of which are two of my personal favorite fics), you're now a pretty big name at the Remus/Tonks thread at FictionAlleyPark. We were looking for links to good stories with Remus and Tonks and I linked them there, and they all love it!
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