|Synonyms:||long-fic, novel-length, long story, epic-length|
|See also:||Story Length, Standalone, Ficlet|
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"Epic-length" fanfiction or "epics" may or may not be considered a category distinct from longfic. If the two categories are distinguished, epic-length works are longer than longfic.
I'm actually surprised that some people think +20k fics are "long", is that because my usual fandoms are ridiculous verbose? What about you, nonnies?
50k+ Though in my first fandom, long ago, it had to be 100k+ to be considered long. My first fic was 800k and it wasn't the longest in the fandom. Someone hit 1000k a year later.
To me anything above 10K is a long fic, but that's mostly because my definition comes from the writing side of things. I write anything over 10K, I count it as long (since I'm usually around the 3K mark).
In most of my fandoms, I'd say +20k fic is long, and that suits me just fine because honestly I don't have time for most 100K word epics. I haven't encountered very much fic over 50k that maintained consistent quality and basically made me want to keep spending my time and effort on them. I can read a 20-50k fic quickly, and if it's disappointing it's no big deal.
Oh no, in my fandom just chapters are usually 10-15k. When we have 'one-shot' contests, the word limit is usually minimum 10k, max 15k, with this being understood to be the fandom's baseline 'short story'. However, I've found that (and not to inadvertently offend long-ficcers, as I enjoy writing them myself) fandoms with a trend of long long long fic usually end up being cesspools of shitty quality. Fandoms with shorter fic seem to have greater quality. If you're writing a 300k story, then you're either an amazing storyteller, or you are a really awfully bad one. You can guess which of those is most likely on any given day.
Many fans enjoy longer stories more than short ones. For example, in a poll by kestrelsan of over 330 participants more than 55% answered that they get most enjoyment from stories over 20k words length, and over 64% said they think stories they read would be better if they were longer.
The Longest Fic
A five-million-word Hobbit/Lord of the Rings/Silmarillion work titled At the Edge of Lasg'len claims to be "the world's longest English language narrative fanfiction". As of February 2021, it is the longest work posted on Archive of Our Own, at 5,078,036 words and counting.
Previous record-holders include two works posted on Fanfiction.net: Ambience: A Fleet Symphony, a Kantai Collection fanfic 4.5 million words long and last updated in 2019, and The Subspace Emissary's Worlds Conquest, a Supersmash Brothers fanfic 4.1 million words long and last updated in 2018.
- 2013-07-03 11:00 am (UTC) by Anonymous
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- pegacornicopia. Posted on 22 December 2016 at /r/FanFiction. (Accessed 22 May 2018.)
- kestrelsan. 5k, 10k, 20k.... posted 19 Nov 2008 (accessed 31 Mar 2010)
- At the Edge of Lasg'len by AnnEllspethRaven and SonaBeanSidhe, Archived version (Accessed 6 February 2021.)