Harry Potter comes of age, and other stories

From Fanlore
Jump to: navigation, search
News Media Commentary
Title: Harry Potter comes of age, and other stories
Commentator: Andrew Walker
Date(s): 29 August 2003
Venue: BBC News Online
Fandom: Harry Potter, others
External Links: BBC NEWS - UK, Archived version
Harry Potter comes of age, and other stories.png
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

Harry Potter comes of age, and other stories is a 2003 article about fanfiction.

It refers to Tara O'Shea as "the doyenne of internet fanfic" quotes "Dr Merlin - alias Melissa Wilson" as one of the most prominent writers, mentions FictionAlley, and explains some fanfic terms and sub-genres, including the typical paragraph on the 'controversial' nature of slash while claiming that it's mostly written and read by 'young women'.
Mary Sue's feature lead characters based on an idealised version of their writer, songfics are written around popular lyrics and "what ifs?" deal with alternative history.

Perhaps fanfic's most controversial area is slash fiction. This sub-genre, written - and read - mainly by young women, features same-sex relationships between fictional characters.

For example Spock/Kirk or Harry/Malfoy - the slash referring not to a knife but to the punctuation mark.

Seen by its writers as a new nonconformist form of female sexual expression, some stories are romantic Mills and Boon parodies, while others are explicitly pornographic.
The article also has a section about professional author fanfic policies and ends with the question of where all this might lead:

And pitching fanfic ideas to literary agents might just be the next big thing. Already a number of fanfic writers have been published, mainly writing fantasy and sci-fi.

Surely, though, more will follow: what price the new JK Rowling, Robert Harris or JRR Tolkien emerging from the net? With all those thousands of writers out there, the chances are high that some will achieve greatness.