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Synonyms: fannish dinosaur, fan dinosaur
See also: Olds, Zinosaur, Bitter Old Fanfic Queen, Old School, The Good Old Days

Fanosaur hat, design by Melody C.

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Fanosaur is a term for a long-time fan. As seen in the examples, what qualifies as "long-time" varies from fan to fan. It is often ironically self-applied, but some fans also feel that it's used by younger fans as a pejorative label.

A very closely related term is Zinosaur which is a term for a long-time fan of printed, dead tree zines. It is most often used by older fans in an affectionate way.

Examples of Use: Fanosaur

cover of the 2017 fiction zine, Fanosaur's Delight; the illo portrays a "fanosaur" putting up/taking down/writing on flyers at a con, artist is Sehkmet


From Melody C.:

I am stepping back from every fandom but a couple of them frequented by fanosaurs and even that participation will be off-line." [1] and "In all the crap over the last two days, one theme has cropped up again and again -- explicitness in slash fic. I'm an old fanosaur from back in the day and the only kind of slash we had back then WAS explicit slash. In fact, balls to the wall explicit slash. We were often very avant garde back then, so I've just become accustomed to pushing the outside of the envelope with that.[2]


From Solomon Trimble:

I was aware of the huge online fan base of Twilight before I started filming. My sister in law and all her friends were big fanosaurs, way before I was cast [as Sam Uley in the Twilight movies].[3]


I get the impression that newer fans don't have a clue what a drabble started out as. Just like they don't know what slash used to be. But what the hey, I'm a fanosaur.[4]

I am a fanosaur –a new term for an ol--er, long time fan.;-) Over the years, I've written a few stories in several different fandoms, but my three main fandoms are The Professionals, The Sentinel and Supernatural. The Sentinel is the reason I broke down and bought my first computer in 1997, before that I was a zine-based fanwriter.[5]

Like so many others I found Trek as a child, was part of the original letter writing campaign and got my first fan fic published in a zine in (can't say it to loud) 1980. But my first fan 'marysue' was in a notebook, in pencil while I was still in elementary school. Which I still have btw. Talk about embarrassing! Here's to us fanosaurs! May the trails we blazed be walked on by hundreds and hundreds! [6]

What a vivid image: I can see an animated dinosaur waving her cane... lol! Frankly, as I've said before, I found being called a dinosaur highly insulting for a long time. But found it worse to be called a "Grand Dame" or an "old one". Even worse was someone saying "I know it's been a long time since you were young". I was 18 when I got into fandom and was one of two of the youngest in a very large group of K/S fans. Now, 30ish year later, I find myself being called "old" in one form or another. I wasn't the one to apply the term "fanosaur" to myself but decided it was the best of the bunch. And, btw, in my brain and soul I'm *still* 18.

People who have used words like "dinosaur" or "Grand Dame", etc, that imply intolerance via age to anyone who's been in fandom for a long time are the ones perpetrating the image "get off my lawn you online fanish people"; those of us who fit that term aren't the ones projecting that impression upon ourselves. It's been put *on* us by those "online fanish people" using terms to designate the computer-cultural chasm between us.

By accepting "fanosaur", I'm simply doing an end run around the people pushing the image on me. It's sorta like a minority taking control of a negative word for their race and using it themselves; the result is defusing the power of that word. [7]

Personally, I think fanosaur or grand dame is better than old fuddy-duddy. But what do I know? I've only been in fandom for about five years. I guess I'm a whipper-snapper.[8]



I feel that IMP's readership comprises a pretty fair cross-section of fandom, some BNFs, some WKFs, some neos, some total Trekkers, some specialists, a couple of SMOFs, some Trekosaurs, actifans and passifans (and a partridge in a pear tree), That you can be such a diverse sampling and still be in agreement in some very essential areas really must be the image of IDIC.[9]

Fannish Dinosaur:

I order the occasional Gerbil, for old times' sake but I suspect I'm like the fannish dinosaurs who rue the passing of hekto jelly. But if you're feeling sorry for an old fan and tired whose day has gone and whose chance for fame has passed him by, take me into a bar at the Metropole and ask the server there for two Spayed Gerbils.[10]


Used zines are not eligible for return or refund. First, we've had too many from The Entitlement Generation who seem to think it's okay to order a zine, read it, then return it for a full refund. Sorry - nobody owes you anything for free. Last thing I got for free took a cycle of antibiotics to get rid of. We are old and grumpy. We are zine-o-saurs... hear us roar. [11]

Fan Hag:

"ok, you retain the label of fan hag until we can get someone from before 85." [12]

Old Trekker:

I had a dream the other night. I was sitting at a desk with piles of zines around me looking at a TV camera. On the wall to my left was a giant ticking pocket watch. I picked up Naked Times 3022. "Don't you just hate it when there is a 1.5 inch margin, a half in border and another half inch margin? There's less words per page here than there is in Curious George Rides a Bike." Then I picked up Liasons II: "Don't you Just hate paying $20.00 for a multimedia zine when you only have one media interest? Does the world need a Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea story? I think not." "Don't you Just hate it..." I woke up in a cold sweat. I was ANDY ROONEY. That whiney, irritating, reason I never watch the last 10 minutes of 60 minutes. Could this be? Unfortunately, my net-friends would probably say, yes. On slash net, I've had the distressing habit of prefacing things with, "Ten years ago..." or "When we first published OUT OF BOUNDS..." . Then it hit me, I was in the midst of a post adolescent midfanlife crisis. Worse than that, I was becoming something I had ridiculed only a few short years ago, AN OLD TREKKER. In this multi-media age, you don't need to be a Trek fan to be an OLD TREKKER. Being an OT is a state of mind.[13]

Meta/Further Reading


  1. ^ Shout out for another co-mod (July 23, 2007)
  2. ^ Question for the group mind (July 18, 2007)
  3. ^ accessed 12.7.2010; reference link
  4. ^ from From LJS, a Life on Mars fan at The Railway Arms Forum post "Post S2 Ep8 Fanfic Recommendations?" dated August 9, 2009; reference link.
  5. ^ Swellison at, accessed 12.7.2010;reference link
  6. ^ quoted anonymously from Zinelist (Jul 4, 2009)
  7. ^ quoted anonymously from Zinelist (Jul 5, 2009)
  8. ^ quoted anonymously from Zinelist (Jul 5, 2009)
  9. ^ from Implosion #6 (1977)
  10. ^ from Mike Glicksohn in Fanfoodery or the plain fans guide to eating (1987)
  11. ^ Fanzines Plus, accessed 12.13.2010, Archived version
  12. ^ a fan in 2006 comments to another at When we were newbies... a reply to St. Crispins
  13. ^ from Lezlie S in Strange Bedfellows #1 (May 1993)