hey guys! let’s talk for a while.
so there’s been a lot of stuff coming up in fandom. a lot of it has been a little…worrying.
i know that a lot of fandom - especially in ficdom - are young, inspiring writers. even if you aren’t a young, inspiring writer, and are in fact a lovely 40-year-old with a penchant for knitting and writing in your free time, there are some things that everyone should know, especially concerning how people should write their fic.
now if you’re posting on ao3, good! that’s the platform i’ll be talking about (mostly because i use it myself) but if you’re posting anywhere else, this applies to you still.
now, bts fandom has been posting a lot of fic recently that are rated 18+ for numerous reasons, some of them because they contain sexual content - others because they talk about sensitive topics. from this point on, please be aware of trigger warnings such as: rape, abuse, manipulation, etc.
now, here’s the problem. if you’re gonna write a fic about, say for example, domestic abuse, heres what you got to do: your homework. go out and research. go and ask someone - if you have to - about their experiences only after you’ve asked them explicitly if they’re ok with talking to you about it, if they’re okay with the limits of your questioning, if they’re okay with you writing about it, etc. you have to ask this. same goes for any other traumatic experience. if you’re going to write it, research it. don’t just do it through the internet, because everyone’s experiences are different. do it through people. it will be painful, hard, and you will feel numerous things that might make you question why you’re writing this in the first place, but if you’re really serious about something then show that you are. treat the subject with respect.
so many fics now in the archive are flippant, using abuse or noncon as a plot device, or even worse, make it seem almost sensual. it’s not. it’s not fun, it’s not good, do not make it that way. for fuck’s sake, have some decency. this is not your little kink world, you cannot get away with doing stuff like that without doing your research first.
fics that contain controversial subjects (like male pregnancy, which if written with a cismale character is inherently transphobic, don’t fight me on this) should be written with care. either spend substantial amount of time researching them or don’t write them at all. there will be people who will be triggered by this kind of material and you cannot do anything about it, but as an author, what you can do is try to be as respectful and as polite as possible when you try to tell your story. this is not a smut-filled world for you. if you want to write about real-life things, then you better sit down and realize what real-world consequences are. trying to make traumatic and controversial subjects romantic for the sole purpose of ~otp~ is not okay. it’s not.
writing, for most people, is not just a fulfillment; it’s catharsis, it’s a lifeline, a hobby, a form of expression, a movement. when you post something online, it’s public, it’s real. it’s out there for other people to see. you give your permission for others to connect with it the way you feel you’ve connected with it. (that is, not to say, that they’re allowed to steal it.) people are allowed to get upset and disgusted at your work. they’re allowed to like it, too. but realize that it’s your job to try and be as sensitive as possible, because if you’re going to write about something that you yourself have not gone through, then you need to realize that you have no precedence to stand on a soapbox when your fic is being criticized and defend your own words. you don’t. you have no idea what you’re talking about; how can you defend it?
secondly; sex. listen, it’s totally okay to be as sexually free or conservative as you want; it’s your body, your life, your words. do as you want. but when we’re talking about sex, take a moment to educate yourself on what a healthy sexual relationship is. where do we cross the line between abuse and bdsm? what is the difference between a dom/sub relationship and a relationship with a harmful imbalance of power? most people don’t seem to understand this difference. it’s okay; a lot of people don’t because of the world’s lack of good sexual education (HONESTLY) but it’s your job to make yourself educated. if you haven’t had sex, that’s fine! if you have, that’s fine! my advice: still look it up. we don’t know everything. there’s always something to learn. fandom/ficdom has long migrated away with vanilla sex, which totally okay, but kinks can only be negotiated if you know what your healthy baseline is. learn it. learn it and understand it and know everything before you attempt to write it.
these were the two things i really wanted to say. i’ve noticed a lot of fics have been having these problems; i know i’ve really condensed things and i could say a lot more. this is my own personal opinion, even though it really is good to try and learn more about things before writing about them (form your own opinion, you know?) i just wish to see a better change in fic; after all, words is how most of us live.