November 18, 2016 by T. Gregory Argall
There was a time when I didn’t really get fan fiction. I didn’t comprehend it at all. First of all, “fanfic” sounds like an uncomfortable style of shoe, the kind with the buckles on the inside. But even beyond that, I just didn’t see the point in not creating your own characters if you have a story to tell.
But recently I started developing a story idea and I realised that it can only be told under the umbrella of fan fiction.
See, what I really didn’t understand until I actually had to understand it, is that writing fan fiction gives the writer much more freedom for flights of fancy than writing, let’s say, traditional fiction.
- You don’t have to devote pages and pages to character introduction and development because your reader is (assumedly) already familiar with the characters.
- You can experiment with how these particular characters would deal with a new situation.
- You don’t have to adhere strictly to canonical history within the fictional world.
- You can mix characters from different fictional worlds; for instance, you could have CSI’s Gil Grissom dating Catwoman if you wanted (and he totally would, too).
- You don’t have to ask permission to use someone else’s characters and there’s no sense of guilt associated with the theft and borderline plagiarism because you’re a fan.
Okay, maybe I still don’t completely get it, but that won’t stop me from coming up with my own fanfic stories.
I have an idea for a story that draws on characters from multiple movies and books, as well as from the real world. It’s a wild action-thriller spy adventure with a mix of madcap comedy and heart-warming family moments. Plus, it’s based on actual events that I imagined in my head.
The story starts in Philadelphia in 1998 when Ned Beatty recruited Clint Howard, Ted Raimi, Shawn Wayans, and William Baldwin for a secret mission. They had to infiltrate an underground lair hidden on the abandoned South Brother Island in New York City in order to rescue Joe Estevez from a vile group of nefarious villains’ younger brothers.
The semi-evil group, calling themselves the Concilium Minorem Fratrem (mostly because it sounds cool), have a diverse membership:
- Dave Luthor, exiled former-member of the Hair Club For Men
- Chip Blofeld, Assistant Editor at Cat Fancy Magazine
- Oscar Octavius aka Dr. Octopus DDS, the dastardly dentist of deviltry
- Simon Gruber, Jeremy Irons lookalike and riddle enthusiast
- Timmy Von Doom, Minister of Jenga for the Sovereign Nation of Latveria
- Pete Söze, internet mogul, runs the website HeyLookItsKeyser.com
- Steve Moriarty, “professor” of flower arranging, enjoys puns and long walks on the beach
I wanted to include Joe Morton in there someplace but the reference would be too obscure for anyone but John Sayles to get.
Anyway, there are exciting scenes with tense confrontations, imaginative guns, and unlikely explosions. It’s a great story and it will be serialized next year in WTF (Way To Fanfic) Magazine. There’s already an enquiry about the film rights from a guy who says his older brother works at a movie studio.
And I want Dave and Phil Alvin to play the theme song.
Try to be nice to each other. Even your brother.