Nikki (nakeisha) wrote,

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Thirty Day Fan Fiction Writing Meme. Day #24

Once again snaggled from dinozzoitis

Day 01 – How did you first get into writing fanfic, and what was the first fandom you wrote for? What do you think it was about that fandom that pulled you in?
Day 02 – Name the fandoms you've written in, and how much you've written in that fandom, and if you still write in it.
Day 03 – For each of the fandoms from day two, what were your favourite characters to write?
Day 04 – Do you have a "muse" character, that speaks to you more than others, or that tries to push their way in, even when the fic isn't about them? Who are they, and why did that character became your muse?
Day 05 –If you have ever had a character try to push their way into a fic, whether your "muse" or not, what did you do about it?
Day 06 – When you write, do you prefer writing male or female characters?
Day 07 – Have you ever had a fic change your opinion of a character?
Day 08 – Do you write OCs? And if so, what do you do to make certain they're not Mary Sues, and if not, explain your thoughts on OCs.
Day 09 – Pairings – For each of the fandoms from day two, what are your three favourite pairings to write?
Day 10 – Pairings – Have you ever gone outside your comfort zone and written a pairing you liked, but found you couldn't write, or a pairing you didn't like, and found you could?
Day 11 – Genre – do you prefer certain genres of fic when you're writing? What kind do you tend to write most?
Day 12 – Have you ever attempted an "adaptation" fic of a favourite book or movie but set in a different fandom?
Day 13 – Do you prefer canon or fanon when you write? Has writing fanfic for a fandom changed the way you see some or even all of the original source material?
Day 14 – Ratings – how high are you comfortable with going? Have you ever written higher? If you're comfortable with NC-17, have you ever been shocked by finding that the story you're writing is G-rated instead?
Day 15 – Warnings – What do you feel it most important to warn for, and what's the strangest thing you've warned for in a fic?
Day 16 – Summaries – Do you like them or hate them? How do you come up with them, if you use them?
Day 17 – Titles – Are they the bane of your existence, or the easiest part of the fic? Also, if you do chaptered fic, do you give each chapter a title, or not?
Day 18 – Where do you get the most inspiration for your fics (aka 'bunnies') from?
Day 19 – When you have bunnies, do you sit down and start writing right away, or do you write down the idea for further use?
Day 20 – Do you ever get bunnied from other people's stories or art in the same fandom?
Day 21 – Sequels – Have you ever written a sequel to a fic you wrote, and if so, why, and if not, how do you feel about sequels?
Day 22 – Have you ever participated in a fest or a Big Bang? If so, write about your favourite experience in relation to one. If not, are there any you've thought about doing? And if not, why not?
Day 23 – When you post, where do you post to? Just your journal? Just an archive? Your own personal site?
Day 24 – Beta'ing – How many betas do you like to use to make sure there aren't any major flaws in your fic? Do you have a beta horror story or dream story?
Day 25 – Music – Do you listen to music while you write? Do you make play-lists to get into a certain 'mood' to write your fic? Do you need noise in general? Or do you need it completely quiet?
Day 26 – What is the oddest (or funniest) thing you've had to research for a fic?
Day 27 – Where is your favourite place to write, and do you write by hand or on the computer?
Day 28 – Have you ever collaborated with anyone else, whether writing together, or having an artist work on a piece about your fic?
Day 29 – What is your current project or projects?
Day 30 – Do you have a favourite fic you've written? What makes it your favourite? And don't forget to give us a link!

Day 24 – Beta'ing – How many betas do you like to use to make sure there aren't any major flaws in your fic? Do you have a beta horror story or dream story?

I don't use a beta, unless a ficathon specifically insists I do so.

When I first started to write fanfiction I did use betas, I used three: two Brits and an American as I was writing in an American fandom. They were (they still are *g*) lovely people and very helpful, but I took whatever they suggested (and yes, it was suggestions) as gospel and so made every change they suggested, even if I didn't want to - my fault, not theirs. I realised this wasn't working when in one story two suggested I change one particular thing, but the changes they suggested were total opposites, whilst the third person thought that part was great and didn't need changing. Thus, there was no way I could please all three people!

Then I drifted into a different fandom and was writing only for zines and felt that given the stories were edited anyway, I didn't need to have them beta read.

When I started to write for the web as well as zines I did have a beta reader (in fact the person who published the vast majority of my stories) as she and I work in the same way and by then I wasn't feeling I had to change everything. But as I got more prolific and my dear friend's disability worsened I didn't feel I could keep asking her, so I stopped using anyone at all. And it works for me. I'm happy, I feel my stories are just that 'mine'.

For any story over c.1,500 words before I post it I do a screen edit, then print the story out and do a hard copy edit (I would recommend this to anyone who doesn't have/doesn't want a beta reader but wants a 'different' view of their story as I find it tremendously helpful, I can spot more typos this way than on screen) and if the story is very long I will do a second screen edit after the hard copy edit. For anything shorter I tend to just do a screen edit or a couple of screen edits. I use Semagic (a LJ Client) to post and once I've copy and pasted the story into it, I tend to do another read through before posting. Again, it's a slightly different way of reading/checking the story than just doing it in Word and I've caught the odd typo that way.

Yes, of course I still miss the odd thing, but then that can (and does) happen if you have one, two, three of half a dozen beta readers - no one is perfect, not even mainstream publishers (going by the increasing number of 'errors' that pop up in books).

Would my stories be better with a beta reader? Maybe, but I'm happy and content with how I do it and with the results and I don't have to worry about upsetting anyone if I don't accept their suggestions or make the changes and end up feeling it's not my story or parts of it aren't mine.

I haven't got a horror story in respect of beta readers. The ones I have used have all be excellent, non-pushy - everything one could ask for really.
Tags: !memes/quizes, !memes: fanfic/fandom

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