Instructor: David Selim Sayers
In cooperation with:
With millions of online stories, writers, and readers, fanfiction is the biggest literary movement of our day – but also the most controversial. It is technically illegal because it uses copyrighted material. It is derided as artistically worthless because many authors are amateurs, juvenile, or both. And it is judged as unoriginal because it relies on existent stories and characters. But fanfiction has a proud pedigree: many classic works of literature, from Ancient Greek tragedies to Shakespearean plays, could theoretically be classified as fanfiction.
For contemporary writers, fanfiction offers heaps of potential. If you are an aspiring wordsmith, fanfiction is a great way to reach your first audience, receive valuable feedback, and establish a periodic writing routine. If you are a published author, fanfiction is a chance to take a creative break from your long-term writing project, leave your artistic comfort zone, and experiment with form and content. And for those of us uncomfortable with exposure, fanfiction grants complete anonymity!
In this course, we will combine the theory and practice of fanfiction. We will begin each session with a look at the movement’s history and its relationship to concepts such as folklore, community, and originality. We will then move on to reviewing and discussing existent fanfiction stories, a practice that will help us determine the trends, potential, and limitations of the movement. In the final part of each session, we will write our own stories and learn how to publish them on the most popular fanfiction websites.
Maximum enrollment: 10
November 11 – December 16, 2020
18 hours (6 weeks)
The Red Wheelbarrow Bookstore
9, rue de Médicis