Devotees post their own twists, turns of favorite series

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News Media Commentary
Title: Devotees post their own twists, turns of favorite series
Commentator: Sonja Lewis
Date(s): 28 August 2002
Venue: The New York Times
Fandom: multifandom
External Links: Lewis, S. (2002, August 27). Devotees post their own twists, turns of favorite series. Cox News Service. from
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Devotees post their own twists, turns of favorite series is an article by Sonja Lewis. It is one of the many in the late 1990s, early 2000s that tried to explain fan fiction to the masses.

It mentions a fan named Debra Talley who wrote Remington Steele fic, a fan named Melissa Good, who headed DragonCon's Hercules/Xena programming, a fan named Nancy Thysell who wrote Emergency! fiction, the general state of Frasier fiction, and a quote by Henry Jenkins.


Well-known in the fan fiction realm is that most stories are written by white, middle-aged women, according to Jenkins' book. That remains true, but no one can pinpoint exactly why.
Finally, after four seasons of outsmarting thieves, killers and schemers around the world, Laura Holt and Remington Steele marry. Fans of the romantically charged '80s TV series Remington Steele wanted this. But not that way. They had hoped the gutsy female private eye and her suave Irish sidekick would profess their hidden love. Instead, the crime-fighting couple married so Steele wouldn't be deported. I can do better, thought Debra Talley, 49, of Decatur. Talley is among the legions of men and women who manipulate the lives of TV characters through fan fiction. It's written by devotees of television shows, movies, comic books and other forms of media and is shared and critiqued on the Web.
Fan fiction's modern roots are found with dismayed Star Trek fans who sought further adventures in strange new worlds after the show was canceled. But in the past decade, thanks to the Internet, fan fiction has rocketed in popularity and expanded to include sitcoms, soap operas and reality TV. "It's growing at a rate that can't be socialized. There's so many different groups in so many parts of the country. There are hundreds of thousands if not millions of these Web sites out there devoted to fan fiction," says Henry Jenkins, director of comparative media studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.