Why Commenting On FanFiction Is Important
Alright kids, Boo here with a hopefully non-arrogant PSA.
I’m a writer of FanFiction because I like it and it’s my preferred genre (also a great way to receive feedback on writing that I can use on originals, bref). But like with most artistic work posted online, I have very little feedback.
When I was in a slightly writing rut, I cranked one shots left and right, nothing out of the ordinary. But instead of people commenting with their thoughts and good feedback, they just gave me requests.
I don’t think I could ever put into words what that felt like, but I’ll try (the irony of being a writer). It suddenly felt tiring, being a writer, and very quickly I stopped writing altogether. I only ever showed my friend what I wrote and left it at that. I haven’t published anything for a while after. It felt like people were treating me like a mule wanting me to do work for them, and I just wasn’t up for that. I lost my will to write, and then I began to think, “If I post something else other than what was requested, will people even read it?”
Then you get the infamous comments, “You haven’t forgotten about my request right??? Here’s another.”
That just adds anxiety and guilt. I’m purposely ignoring the comments to save my own uncreative ass, at least that’s what it feels like.
After weeks of convincing myself that my stories are worth sharing no matter how many people read them, I started writing and publishing again while working on some longer pieces. Slowly it got better.
Now this week, I remembered I joined another fanfiction platform, and realized I had never published anything on it. I had an idea, and so I started writing. It didn’t come out as I imagined it would, but I was so proud? Like, I started feeling happy about what I created again. Like genuine happiness that I haven’t felt in months since my last published work.
A few hours later, I get this comment:
I cranked out three 3k stories after reading this.
In four days.
It never happened before, and I don’t know how many times it will happen again. It was one comment, but it gave me so much fighting spirit that I think I’m on my way to regaining my initial writer mindset.
Fanfiction writers depend on feedback as a validation that their stories matter to people. If you’re wondering why your favourite author hasn’t updated/posted in a while, ask yourself, “Did I do everything that would convince them to continue writing this?”