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my fanfiction and my life in fandom

Let me begin with a practical question. I'd like to make my fan fiction available online again. Occasionally I've gotten emails from people asking to see "Gilgamesh," for instance, and I've been so harried I haven't even been able to deal with it, knowing as I do that this will involve digging around on my computer to find the thing (not guaranteed), and then figuring out where and how to post it. Inevitably I'm under twelve work-related deadlines when this happens, and I run away in cowardly fashion.

I'd like to put up all my old stuff -- Smallville, X-Files, and whatever else I may have lying about. Where should it go? And when I say where, I must ask for your kindness. Think of me as an alien who knows nothing about AO3 or anything else. Sadly, you will have to use simple words and short declarative sentences: "Go here. Press the red button. The instructions will be self-evident." That sort of thing. I think most of my stories have html tags in them for italics and paragraphs and the like, so hopefully that won't be a problem.

...And now for the "life in fandom" portion of our show. It's been ages since I've felt fannish about anything, and I'm somewhat melancholy about that; and I find myself thinking about old fan friends and wondering how they are, and whether anyone's heard from those who've gafiated, like Anna S. and Kat Allison, and whether those still treading the light fantastic in new fandoms are enjoying their adventures. Is anyone still out there?

As for me, I remain caught in the icy cold stream of work, which continues to claim every hour it can. Time has become my greatest lack and enemy. I dream of retirement, when I can write whatever I like, whenever I wish.

Are old friends reading this? The dogs are well -- Harry is nine! Isn't that incredible? He still has the health and vigor of a young dog, as I was reminded today when he loudly challenged a motorcycle. The garden is full of roses, and right now deer are dozing under the trees, just down the hill. I've discovered new authors whose work I seek out, and that no longer happens often enough. If only these moments weren't snatched out from under the crushing wheels of time.

Comments

( 61 comments — Leave a comment )
roxymissrose
Apr. 21st, 2013 08:02 pm (UTC)
Longtime lurker here--hello! I can't believe Harry is nine!

I think AO3 is very elegant and super easy to use. A little too easy, since it's rapidly becoming FF.Net the graphic porn version. It's possible I'm being snooty, though.

I don't have invites, and that's something you need, but post and ask and I'm sure old friends will be able to help you!
debris_k
Apr. 21st, 2013 08:10 pm (UTC)
I have an AO3 invite, just need an email addy to send it to! I haven't used the site in ages, though, so I won't attempt to explain how best to use it. (It did import my fics from lj without problems back when, though.)
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j_bluestocking
Apr. 21st, 2013 08:47 pm (UTC)
I'll need a name? Suddenly I feel like somebody's grandfather in 1995 trying to program a VCR.

It's good to see you and our mutual galaxy!
green_grrl
Apr. 21st, 2013 08:50 pm (UTC)
I second (third?) AO3! It's pretty self-explanatory once you have your account.

In order to Post a story, it very helpfully gives you the option to paste a New Work into a text box or it will Import Work from a URL or URLs (for chaptered fic) where you've already posted.

You can rate your story basically equivalent to G, PG, R, or NC-17, or choose not to rate. You can say whether your story contains any of the "big" warnings (rape, character death, etc), or whether you're just not saying.

For the rest of the header-type things, you can start typing in the field and it will start suggesting managed tags. E.g., in Fandom, start typing in "smal" and Smallville will come up as a choice you can select. In Relationships, start typing in "lex" and all relationships including Lex come up, including Clark Kent/Lex Luthor. Of course if you have something new (Lana Lang/Eleventh Doctor), you can just type it in. Under Additional Tags, start typing in "alte" and Alterate Universe comes up as an option, etc.

You can put notes at the beginning and/or at the end. For chaptered stories, you can have notes with each chapter.

If you want your story dated with its original publication date rather than today's date, you can Set a Different Publication Date. (Importing from LJ generally does this for you.)

Import will bring your entire story into the text box, so any story headers you put on your original post you'll want to delete out.

You can preview and edit before posting.

Those are the basic steps. It's only SHEER laziness that has kept me from getting all my old stories up. New ones (not that I write much) do go up right away.

It would be marvelous to have your stories up there!
j_bluestocking
Apr. 22nd, 2013 12:29 am (UTC)
Thank you! Now I just have to get my act together and do it. (Easier said than done. But at least with the information I'm getting here, I don't have to dismiss this as all-too-complicated before I even begin.)
the_shoshanna
Apr. 21st, 2013 08:51 pm (UTC)
I haven't heard anything from or about Anna in about two years; at that time she was just trying to transition out of a shelter, a process she was posting about to LJ. I really wonder what's happened to her, whether she's well, whether she's safe.

I haven't heard from or about Kat for possibly longer, but last I heard she was very happy in her new job and hew home!

As for putting up fic, I heartily vote for you doing so, and for putting it on the AO3, but I am not the person to describe how to do it; I put about half my own stuff up there years ago, stalled out, and never finished. But I'm sure someone else can...
j_bluestocking
Apr. 22nd, 2013 12:37 am (UTC)
I had no idea about Anna! I lost track of her somewhere around 2008, and didn't know she'd come back to post. One of the best writers I've ever come across, and so much brighter than I am -- the universe is set up wrong if she's in distress. Do you think some of the Seattle contingent might know how she's doing? (I don't remember where you're living, so that sentence may sound stupid if you're in Seattle yourself.)

I do hope Kat touches base some time. I miss her.
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curtana
Apr. 21st, 2013 09:01 pm (UTC)
AO3 is very nice for archiving fanfic. HTML tags will work fine there. Here are my step-by-step instructions for getting an account there and posting :)

1. Get an invitation to http://archiveofourown.org/ - I have just requested one that I will be happy to send to you when it arrives (normally within a day or two) but if someone else here has one already, they can give it to you sooner - it will arrive as an email invitation to join, and you will have to click the link in the email and create an account. Your username will be what is publicly displayed, but you can also create 'pseuds' which may be, for instance, handles you've used at other points in your fannish life, so that people who knew you way back when will be able to find you (I don't know if this is an issue for you or if you've always used basically the same name).

2. After you've created your account, it will send you an activation email, which you have to click within two weeks or else the account will expire.

3. Once you've set up and activated your account, then you can begin posting! You will go to your 'dashboard' (for me, this is http://archiveofourown.org/users/Nary - insert your username as appropriate :) and there is a button near the top that says 'post new'. Click on that and you'll be taken to a page where you'll be asked to supply some information: Rating (AO3 uses general, teen and up, mature, and explicit, or you can leave it as 'not rated' if you're unsure or don't wish to say), Archive Warnings (again, you can 'choose not to use archive warnings' if you want, which is the default box checked, or you can check any of the others that may apply), Fandoms (start typing in the name and if it is already in the archive, it should appear in a drop-down menu and you can select it from there - if it is a new fandom to the archive, just type it in yourself and tag wranglers will sort it out behind the scenes).

4. The other 'tags' are optional but helpful for people wanting to locate and read your stories: Category - meaning Gen, M/F, F/F, M/M, Other, or Multi - those last two are often confusing, but I take 'Multi' as meaning 'multiple partners or multiple pairings', and 'Other' as meaning 'pairings with entities that are not straightforwardly male or female'); Relationships, Characters (hopefully those two are fairly self-explanatory!) and Additional Tags (which can be anything you wish, but are especially helpful if they include information such as any major tropes, kinks, spoilers, AU, etc.)

4a. Just to explain more about tags - you can tag with whatever you want, and tag wranglers (like me!) will try to hook up your tags to the 'canonical' forms to make them more easily searchable and findable for readers. If you start typing in something and a similar tag shows up in the drop-down menu, those are the canonical forms of tags - so if you start typing, e.g. 'Friends', it offers you choices such as 'Friendship', 'Friends to Lovers', 'Best Friends,' 'Female Friendship', 'Friends with Benefits', 'Childhood Friends', 'Imaginary Friends', etc. If there is one of those that suits your purposes, click it! If not, keep typing what you wish to say anyway.

5. Put in a title for your work! The rest of the stuff on the posting page you can skip or include as you wish - things like summary, author's notes, whether it was a gift for someone or part of a challenge, etc. If any of that is relevant for you, I can explain it it more detail :) But then you can skip down to the 'work text' field, where you paste in the text of your story - HTML is fine. You can then click 'preview' to see how it looks and make any changes as necessary - the only problems I've sometimes had in copying/pasting fics have been spacing-related, so relatively easy to fix. And then hit 'post' and you're done! Well, apart from (if you're like me) checking back periodically to see how many hits you have and answering any comments :)

Please let me know if you have any other questions - I do tag wrangling, and I'm happy to talk more about how that works if you have questions about it, or anything else (although if it's something else I may not be expert in it :)
j_bluestocking
Apr. 22nd, 2013 12:42 am (UTC)
Thank you, thank you, thank you! This is magnificent. It's just what I needed, and let me say also that anyone who numbers a paragraph "4a" has my affection and esteem. I may indeed be back with questions.
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suricattus
Apr. 21st, 2013 09:47 pm (UTC)
Barefoot Girl just gave in and joined AO3, so yeah, come join! It's easy to use and has actually useful filters...
j_bluestocking
Apr. 22nd, 2013 12:45 am (UTC)
Thanks, I'll join you in the pool as soon as I get my act together! Or, knowing me, possibly before that.
msdori
Apr. 21st, 2013 10:25 pm (UTC)
Ooooh, yes! I think I have the Gilgamesh posts bookmarked, if you need those.

I have a couple of things up on AO3, but mostly I read over there. I have many Clint/Coulson bookmarks; for a pairing that has less than a minute of interaction in canon, and none of that face-to-face, the fandom (a Marvel Cinematic Universe subfandom, if you haven't run across it) is remarkably prolific.

And I will totally flail over your X-Files fic, because holy CATS.
j_bluestocking
Apr. 22nd, 2013 12:47 am (UTC)
X-Files seems so long ago and in another country! The older I get, the more I feel like a time traveler.

Hopefully I can pull all the pieces of Gilgamesh together. But if I have difficulty, I may ask for your bookmarks.
veejane
Apr. 22nd, 2013 12:40 am (UTC)
AO3 is more or less designed for writers rather than readers, so in general I would call the posting interface pretty easy. It's weirdly picky on some categories (who's fucking whom) and weirdly vague or unconcerned on others (you can easily upload two stories in a single fandom and have them end up looking like they're stories in different fandoms), but going in and editing stuff once it's up is not difficult.

(I upload my backlog on your odd sleepy Sunday mornings whenever I remember it, but I have the benefit of doing it from LJ, so it's a simple import. When you do get around to uploading old stories, do cut out the headers; they're a sure noob sign. Whatever doesn't fit into the site's own headers, go ahead and put in the Notes section -- you can arrange for them to come at the end of the story if you prefer.)

(I have some stories so old they never hit LJ -- sigh -- but I haven't got around to uploading most of those. All the *words* that need their asterisks stripped! Who has the time?)
j_bluestocking
Apr. 22nd, 2013 12:50 am (UTC)
Uh-oh. I may have viral runs of asterisks myself. And they were so useful at the time!

Thanks for the header tip. I probably wouldn't even have thought about it.
coloredink
Apr. 22nd, 2013 01:15 am (UTC)
I would definitely recommend AO3: it's extremely intuitive and elegant, it's quickly becoming the "go-to" for anyone looking for fanfiction for a certain fandom--in fact, if you were ever on the Smallville Slash Archive, there's a good chance your fanfiction is up there already, as the SSA recently uploaded their whole archive to AO3. (Imagine my surprise when a bunch of my old SV fanfiction showed up under my username, which no effort on my part at all.)

And if you posted fic to LJ or your own webspace or ff.net or some such, you can also import fic to AO3: just plug in the URL where the fic is, and AO3 grabs it. It's amazing. I love it.

I can't believe Harry is nine! It seems like just yesterday that he was a pup with an old soul.

I've no clue about your old fan friends, but I am for one am still "fannish," by which I mean, I still write fanfiction. I don't read as much of it as I used to, mostly owing to having less time, and let's face it: given the choice between writing fanfiction and reading it, I'd rather be writing. And so I write--quite copiously, actually--for BBC Sherlock fandom, my new fannish beau. It's probably the longest I've ever been in a fandom (I started lurking immediately after the first episode aired, in August 2010, and started producing fic in January 2011), and it's by far the largest fandom I've ever been in. It's a brave, frightening new world for me, and I've responded by retreating into a sort of fannish shell: I write fanfiction, interact with other fans very little beyond responding to comments (I always thank my commenters), and read fanfiction in what little time I can spare.

A good deal of fandom seems to have moved over to this newfangled tumblr thing, and while I have a tumblr, I don't use it to interact with fandom. Fannish tumblr seems to consist of a great deal of squeeing and posting of shirtless pictures of various hunky celebrities, and I find that I've grown boring in my fannish old age. (I kid; I'm not old at all, at least in real-world years, but the majority of tumblr users seem to be in high school and college, and their concerns are alien to me.) It's hard to have real conversations on tumblr--in fact, it's hard to get any attention at all. There are good points to tumblr, for sure, but they're not ones that have much value to me, personally. And so I just sit in my corner of the sandbox and write...

Edited at 2013-04-22 01:17 am (UTC)
j_bluestocking
Apr. 23rd, 2013 03:25 am (UTC)
You're right -- Harry has always had an old soul. Little Gracie is sweet in the way that dogs are sweet, but Harry ponders deeply.

And there is nothing wrong with sitting in one's corner and writing. I hope to do more of that one day. I must admit that, though I'm not quite fannishly obsessed, I have a soft spot in my heart for Sherlock! I may be asking you for recs.
astolat
Apr. 22nd, 2013 02:32 am (UTC)
*hugs* I see you are all set for AO3 tips but feel free to hit me up if you run into any issues! Here are my tips for importing a large batch of stories if you don't want to do them one at a time: http://astolat.dreamwidth.org/252891.html#cutid1

I am enjoying tumblr a lot, largely because these days I have so little time that the low-commitment, high-squee qualities of tumblr are fitting pretty well into my life. (Also I would totally try to sell you on Person of Interest if you were fandom shopping! It's delightfully old-school slashy fun.)

Evi is two and a half which seems impossible to me even as I type it. So glad to hear you are well even if as perennially drowning in the sea of work. <3
j_bluestocking
Apr. 23rd, 2013 03:33 am (UTC)
Two and a half! So clearly you are familiar with harried happiness. I've dipped into Person of Interest a few times -- there was a diner scene that quite charmed me -- but have become detached from TV watching in general over the past year. Even more than before, I mean. I just can't keep up with everything -- it all piles up on my DVR like a series of broken promises. I'm even behind on Who, which is a sad state of affairs.
_swallow
Apr. 22nd, 2013 02:49 am (UTC)
It's good to hear from you and Harry!
j_bluestocking
Apr. 23rd, 2013 03:38 am (UTC)
And I'm glad to see you're still here and writing in your journal. I've thought of you from time to time. It sounds as though you're having fascinating, alien-to-me adventures!
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graycardinal
Apr. 22nd, 2013 06:19 am (UTC)
If "have been hanging out in the same parts of cyberspace since all the cool kids were on GEnie" counts, I've been here (and was there) for the duration. Ah, for the days of ASCII cattle raids and all manner of other amusing shenanigans in the author topics.

Amusingly enough, I have made something of the opposite jump since migrating to the wider 'Net from GEnie, and am now rather more active in a fan-writerly sense than I was then, not least as a result of discovering Yuletide.
j_bluestocking
Apr. 23rd, 2013 03:42 am (UTC)
GEnie! Cattle raids! Life in the author topics! How simple it all seemed then, and when flamewars happened they always involved the same three people.

Do I know you under another name, graycardinal?
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svmadelyn
Apr. 22nd, 2013 07:30 am (UTC)
Soooo back in 2008 or so, I totally offered to make you a website on my domain! And I got somebody awesome to make it for you, but then she didn't have time, and then I didn't have time, then I had a fannish break for a while, and uh, suddenly it's 2013? HI.

EITHER WAY, my apologies for - that, but I did just forward you all of the attachments you sent me back in the day, so I hope that helps. (You're still welcome to the subdomain - I think I created it for you back then, anyway, if you somehow want it still. Buuuut, I think I have proven that I would be useless in getting you the actual website, you know, built.)
j_bluestocking
Apr. 23rd, 2013 03:46 am (UTC)
Heh-heh. You are still a funny girl, svmadelyn of my heart. Thanks for the files -- it'll be useful having them in one place. Rock on, darlin'.
iibnf
Apr. 22nd, 2013 10:39 am (UTC)
Just like everyone else, I found A03 very easy to use. If you want feedback, you'll get more on fanfiction.net, though, as A03 is mostly 'kudos', and offline reading, instead. Depends on how snobby you are, although there's very little difference between them.
j_bluestocking
Apr. 23rd, 2013 03:48 am (UTC)
Thanks! So I guess fanfiction.net is still going strong too, then. I'd wondered if there'd be a migration.
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j_bluestocking
Apr. 23rd, 2013 03:57 am (UTC)
Oh, how lovely to see you! I've always had a sticky note in my mind about you, wondering when you'd write something for the world outside fandom, and I just clicked on your link and saw your e-book! It made me so happy!

Of course, I've never forgotten your Wodehouse story with the dragon boy. Unless I dreamed that... you were sweeping the board with your great fannish work in those days, and my memory is that of an Oliver Sacks character, so pay me no mind if I'm confused.
(Deleted comment)
oracne
Apr. 22nd, 2013 01:41 pm (UTC)
I sent you links to a few folks on A03. I have been recently curious, as well, but have lost touch with quite a few people. I am sad that I have lost a great number of old emails from those days. The few that survive remind me how much fun I had.

I haven't been writing much fiction lately, and I seem to have lost the eagerness to write that I used to have. Trying to figure out how to recapture it - this is an ongoing process. But I've been reading a lot more lately, so maybe that will help. Like Dori, I've been reading a lot of Avengers fic, as well! I bookmarked quite a few stories, if later you should be looking for recs. http://archiveofourown.org/users/oracne/bookmarks

I'll look forward to re-reading your fic!
j_bluestocking
May. 6th, 2013 06:16 pm (UTC)
Thanks! (She said, belatedly -- life got a bit complicated here.) Of course, now that it's clear I can't even respond to comments in a reasonable time, I question how well I'll do at organizing my stories and uploading them.
ciaan
Apr. 22nd, 2013 08:04 pm (UTC)
I must admit that your Gilgamesh fic had a lot to do with how I like to imagine Krypton. Especially in the angsty Lex/Kon story that I am "writing" (meaning I think about it but don't actually put down words) there are a bunch of things that are ripped off from inspired by it.
j_bluestocking
May. 6th, 2013 06:19 pm (UTC)
Oh, thank you! What a lovely thing to say.

I think about a lot of stories I manage to avoid writing down. Someday this will change, I tell myself.
tehomet
Apr. 22nd, 2013 09:22 pm (UTC)
How lovely to hear from you! I'm glad you and Harry are keeping well.

Just adding my voice to the sound of the crowd re: the AO3. It's awesome.

As you probably already know, some of your work is already up on AO3, as the Smallville Slash Archive was imported there when Minotaur, sadly, passed away.

Mercy on the AO3.
Collections: The Smallville Slash Archive page at AO3.
A post with information about the move by danceswithgary

I hope this is useful to you. Apologies if not.

Your writing is so wonderful. I look forward to the opportunity to read more in future.

I hope your job eases up a bit soon.

Best wishes!
j_bluestocking
May. 6th, 2013 06:22 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I didn't realize I had anything up there already. I didn't know about Minotaur, either -- it seems that I'm touching base in time to hear a lot of sad news.

Best wishes to you, too!
aynatonal
Apr. 22nd, 2013 10:11 pm (UTC)
Harry is 9? Gracious, time does fly. It's lovely to see you here. Wishing you all the best!
j_bluestocking
May. 6th, 2013 06:25 pm (UTC)
Amazing, isn't it? In my head he's still a puppy. Maybe in his head, too.

I delight in your icon.
twigged
Apr. 22nd, 2013 10:55 pm (UTC)
I'm still reading, and it's good to see you post! I was actually thinking of you recently - am planning a trip to LA this summer, and always interested in locals "must-sees" if you have any suggestions.

I cannot believe Harry is 9 years old, or that we have all been on LJ together for so many years. My newest fandom is almost entirely on tumblr and it's just not the same.

(This is Dana/shaggirl btw - I changed my username awhile back and somehow managed to remove myself from everyone's friends lists in the process. Now I can never change my user pic or I'll lose my identity completely!)

j_bluestocking
May. 6th, 2013 06:36 pm (UTC)
Your icon announced you immediately!

Well, when you come to LA you certainly "must see" me! Here are some of my most pleasant LA experiences:

Walking around the Venice canals -- water, arching bridges, occasional flurries of geese, and the fun of peering into the windows of the expensive bungalows along the way and looking at their artwork, pianos, and Grammy awards.

Dinner at Yamashiro's -- high on a hill overlooking old Hollywood. Go at sundown, ask for a table with a view, and wander around the grounds afterward.

Walk along the Santa Monica cliffs (the end of the fabled Route 66) and look out at the Pacific.

Do you have any idea of when you're coming? Do you have an email address where I can send you my email address?
(no subject) - twigged - Jun. 15th, 2013 01:22 am (UTC) - Expand
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