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On Writing YWS Fanfiction

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Thu Jun 11, 2009 8:05 pm
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Conrad Rice says...

On Writing YWS Fanfiction

So, you look around YWS. You see all these cute little stories about the various members. Personalities blown out of proportion, twisted, and modified to fit grandiose plots and outrageous happenings. And you think, “Gee, that’s cool. I want to do something like that!”

Hold your horses there, mister. YWS Fanfiction is not as easy as mentioning SPEW in a piece of work. There are some basic understood rules that you need to follow.

1. Spend some time around the site first.

This is a big one. You can’t expect to write fanfiction about something if you don’t even know what the canon is, can you? In this case, the canon of YWS is its everyday happenings. Just be a regular member for a while, observe the online personas of the other people on the site. You’ll get a feel for how things go, and people won’t get mad at you for making them something they aren’t.

2. Don’t put your fellow site members into uncomfortable situations.

This has happened before. People have written fanfiction detailing their fellow YWSers in illegal and/or immoral acts. Don’t do it. If you post it in the regular forums, you will get banned. If you post it in your blog, you won’t get banned, but good luck getting anyone to accept you after that. Have some respect and show some decency when writing your fanfics. Never mind that this is the Internet, you’re using actual people as the basis for your story. Give them some dignity.

3. Don’t worry about including everyone.

So, you’ve been around for a while, and you have a good clean idea. You want to include as many people as possible. Don’t bother. Include the people you are most familiar with. That way, your story will ring true. And even the people who aren’t included will still laugh. Only really stuck up members get upset if they’re not in a YWS fanfic.

4. Keep it to one post.

Very rarely have any YWS fanfics worked for longer than one chapter. They are best viewed as little snippets, not as big galumphing pseudo-epics. After all, we’re not here to just write stories about how we’re best at everything. That’s darned conceited. A quick 500 to 1000 word YWS fanfic is usually what everyone enjoys best. Anything longer, and people lose interest.

5. Post it in the YWS Fanfiction Usergroup.

Don’t clog up the regular forums with it. At one point, all of the featured works on the front page were YWS fanfics. This goes back to what I said about how we aren’t here to write praises to ourselves. Yes, a YWS fanfic, when done right, is a delightful thing. But it’s not the real reason we’re here.

And there you have it. Just follow these five steps, and your YWS fanfiction will be in good condition. Happy writing, and good luck.

-Conrad Rice

EDIT Dec 2011: Number 5 doesn't apply. Please post fanfics in the Fanfiction forum.
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