Ask the Author: tryfanstone

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Interviews by Fans
Title: Ask the Author: tryfanstone
Interviewer:
Interviewee: tryfanstone
Date(s): December 17, 2011
Medium: online
Fandom(s): Supernatural
External Links: interview and comments are here; reference link
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Contents

tryfanstone was interviewed for Supernatural Roundtable.

Some Excerpts

It didn't start off this way. In fact, Supernatural and me, we got off to a really bad start, because I was writing in Highlander when season one showed, and rather a lot of authors I love were suddenly writing, not Highlander, but Sam/Dean. So many of them that I remember promising at the time, no, it's okay, I'll never write Supernatural.

Yeah, right.

Then, my partner in crime q_i said, you have to watch this. Someone at a con rec'd The Jared Padalecki Untitled Project, and I read it and loved both concept and writing. I still do. I wanted more. And then there was spn_j2_bigbang, two summers (then) full of the most wonderful stories, art and vids. Finally, two years after starting to read SPN, while season four was showing, I mainlined the whole series, and found myself pinned to my sofa wide-eyed and breathless.

Then, I started to write. In an American fandom. In a moving media fandom. With live canon. Honestly, I don't know what I was thinking. (I come from the arse end of the Atlantic: I don't own a television, and I'm all too aware of the perils of unfinished canon.) Although actually, after nearly three years of WTF are you doing, Jay, I fairly well know why I started.
So... yes, there are things that I won't write, and I actually had to think really hard about this when I started writing J2 porn. What am I prepared to do? What won't I do? Where do my boundaries actually lie? (And you know this, but I should add that these boundaries are entirely personal. What other people write, request, vid... that's their choice to make, not mine.) I ended up with three things.

Moral Stance: underage. It's the one thing I will take a personal moral stance on: I won't write explicit underage sex, which to me translates to under 16, age of consent in the UK. For starters, it's illegal. Secondly, I am seriously uncomfortable with putting something out on the web which *might* be attractive to an adult who *might* be considering/acting on the desire to have sex with children. I'm so, so uncomfortable with that thought. And let's be honest, I find nothing attractive about the idea personally: I like people well over the age of consent. :)

Writing: kinks. Oddly enough, I don't write my own kinks. I've tried, and the stories are rubbish. (Hm. Some of them creep in around the edges. Breathplay. Bikes.) Also, I don't write anything sexual that could possibly be tracked back to any particular person in my RL. That's not fair, they didn't sign up for that. Having said that... when I was writing the werewolf fic Blood Moon, my then Science Buyer and I spent fifteen minutes working out with actions exactly how to chain someone up and feed them. In my office. :D

Writing: subjects. High School AUs! It's a completely alien environment for me and I wouldn't know where to start. Cafeterias? Dating? Lockers? It's a closed book! Also, gardening. It's the one and only subject I have absolutely no interest in whatsoever. Hm. Catch me off-line and in private and I have strong views on bubble baths, slippers and chocolate in bed (The sheets! The sheets!)...

Having said that. I've learned, never say never...

I've often wondered if other people feel the same way. Not the specifics, but if there are lines people will not cross, or if fandom blurs the boundaries - it's very easy to write something that pushes your boundaries, then something else, if everyone around you is perfectly comfortable with what you're doing.
But I wanted to reply, because I think you made a really interesting point about safe spaces and the anonmemes, and I really wanted to think about it. Your point about posting in known areas - or protected areas - and thus providing a space space for fiction which might not be so well received outside the norms of the community is really well made, and I see exactly what you mean about the supportive, public structures for anyone creating fanworks. In a way, it's part of the fandom contract between creator and consumer, and much appreciated.

I can see, therefore, very clearly, your argument against the anonmemes and the hatememes, and I do very much understand it. I haven't enjoyed watching people on f-list burnt by unexpected, involuntary participation.

Buuuut (eeek, sorry) I have to add... I do appreciate both the fic criticism of the SPN meme and the fic discussion of fail fandom. Personally, I do like stepping outside that very polite contract, and knowing what people really do think of what I've written, and the only way people feel they *can* write that criticism safely is anonymously. In some ways... it would nice if one could opt in? I'd be more than happy with that idea, because I'm well aware that tracking one's own fic being criticised can be a horrible experience for a writer. I do know, though, the choice isn't for everyone.

So, truly, I do understand your revulsion, and I've seen things happen on anonmemes under the cloak of anonymity which I find... not only unpleasant, but false. But I've also seen kindness and honesty, and I have to say (sorry) that for me the good outweighs the bad.

- feel I should add, I've never, ever posted on an anonmeme! (Except once rec'ing something: messed up the link and immediately (a) deleted and (b) decided never to post again! But, you know, if this really makes you uncomfortable, feel free to shout/argue/filter out/defriend...