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Fan Fiction and Fan Communities in the Age of the Internet: New Essays

3.63  ·  Rating Details ·  105 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
Fans have been responding to literary works since the days of Homer's Odyssey and Euripedes' Medea. More recently, a number of science fiction and fantasy works have found devoted fan followings. The advent of the internet has brought these groups from relatively limited, face-to-face enterprises to easily accessible global communities, within which fan fiction proliferate ...more
Paperback, 290 pages
Published July 5th 2006 by McFarland & Company
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Jan 03, 2012 Anna rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
When I found this book on the library shelves, I was immediately interested and grabbed it to take along on my holiday. I was hoping for something that would add to my knowledge of online communities (one of my major interests). I do read fan-fiction on occasion and have been known to dabble in writing it, but I’ve never been part of the communities of writers and readers this book promised to investigate, and so I approached it as if I were planning to pop to the next town over and see what was ...more
Jul 02, 2016 Annie rated it it was ok
Maybe I'm not that into literary critique and more into sociological analysis: some of the articles seemed a bit poor on analysis. Furthermore, the book was published ten years ago and it lost its actuality. Nevertheless, some good things (I liked the piece on intimatopia and the one on writing for queer children felt very important to me).
Jan 08, 2017 Elisabeth rated it liked it
Shelves: fandom, non-fiction
Lots of good research and good ideas, though definitely written for the academic - the language can get dense. Some ideas were new to me - I particularly enjoyed the discussion of intertextuality in both fanfic and conventional literature, and the concept of intimatopia. There are a couple of odd statements that seem to collapse fanfic with slash, its most popular subcategory: the assessment that all stories are either porn or romance doesn't apply to fic in general but might be said to apply to ...more
Emily Murphy
Aug 27, 2015 Emily Murphy rated it it was ok
Note: All of these ratings are on a scale of 1-10, 10 being the best.

Quality of Writing: 4
This book felt like I was reading the essays of a precocious undergrad who used big words like "rhizomatic" to sound intelligent. Yes, the essays were intelligent, but I think the most quality writers are those who can use that intelligence for something other than its own rawness, like humor or pith.

Pace: 3
Being a collection of academic essays, it's no page-turner. In fact, while reading it, I'd often want
May 31, 2009 Jennifer rated it really liked it
A set of essays about fan fiction--the first I've seen published since the general fandom shift to Livejournal, which made it valuable for that alone! There were two or three essays that were awesome, and another two or three that were interesting, and then two or three that made me roll my eyes--that's a pretty good proportion for a set of essays on pop culture. The discussion of roleplay journals on Livejournal was fascinating, and overall the essays that look at how LJ has changed the dynamic ...more
Andrea Meijomil
Un conjunto de ensayos muy interesantes. Se aborda el tema del fanfiction desde distintas perspectivas y se intenta aportar nuevos conceptos teóricos menos restrictivos. Eso sí, tal como explican en la introducción, las conclusiones de los ensayos están lejos de ser generales y en ocasiones, parecen demasiado específicas a partes muy concretas del fandom. Pese a todo, es una lectura que ayuda a ampliar el enfoque en el estudio de este fenómeno, que ha estado siempre muy monopolizado por las idea ...more
I picked this up as research for an essay on feminism and fandom. I liked it, though my degree of interest varied a lot. The first section was my favorite, and I loved the Brief History of Media Fandom. The literary analyses didn't work for me, it felt too academic and it was less interesting when you didn't know the stories (also, the one analyzing her own fic was a bit sketchy for an academic essay). All in all, even though it's already a little dated, it's a great read if you like to analyze ...more
Oct 13, 2008 Clare rated it liked it
This short review is also posted with a link to information about slash on my blog at

Quite interesting with some useful if rather rushed definitions of the some of the jargon used by fan fiction writers in the introduction. A large proportion of the articles in this edited collection are about slash.

Slash represents, in terms of volume, the smallest section of fan fiction but it is one that academics gravitate towards with a passion - all that transgressi
Jun 05, 2007 nicebutnubbly rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, academic
Heavily on the academic side of fan studies, to the point of lay incomprehensibility in several of the articles. But when it's good, it's good, and it's doing some thinking that I haven't seen done before. The scholars represented are excellent thinkers who are thoroughly grounded in the community they are studying and have what is in some cases remarkable insight into how it works and what it does.
Jun 02, 2013 Rd rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4-5-stars
An excellent look at Internet based fandom from multiple viewpoints. I came away with a better understanding of how and why I interact with fandom myself. The only reason I can't give it five stars is because the academic language that was often used was difficult for me to understand at times. However, if fandom is a topic of interest for you I highly recomend this book.
John Carter McKnight
Jun 12, 2010 John Carter McKnight rated it it was amazing
Shelves: academic
Terrific anthology focusing on contemporary fan spaces, particularly LJ. Very strong set of entries, all with new and valuable additions to the field. Blend of fanfic as text and as performance within community: good material for literary studies as well as anthro folks.
This was a quick re-read of about half of the articles - I revisited ones I'd liked before and ignored the rest. The essay on 'archontic literature' remains brilliant, and I'm astounded I've survived this far without citing it.
Nov 30, 2011 Jenny rated it really liked it
Shelves: thesis-shelf
Interesting and informative collection of academic-fan fiction practitioners texts that analyse different aspects of fiction and communities, such as media fandoms, fan fiction writers, slash fiction, queering fiction, female fan fiction writers, etc.
Jun 11, 2011 vylit rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction, 2011
I think this is the best book of scholarship on current fan communities on the market. Covering everything from homoeroticism within fandom to the history of fan communities, the book is a thorough overview of different issues within modern fan communities.
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