A Comprehensive Guide on How to Write the Best Fanfiction

10 things I hate about you, school, student, teacher, college, high school, smart, angry, annoyed, happy, hero, SoSo
Buena Vista Pictures

Start typing!

Have Ideas Flowing Out of You? Learn How to Write Fanfiction Perfectly

If you are a die-hard fan of an original piece of fiction, you've likely read or engaged with fanfiction.

Whether you've fallen in love with the characters or storyline, fanfiction has a huge following online. While the legality of fanfiction is up for debate, there are a lot of people who like to honor a creator's original work with fanfiction, or a fictionalized continuation of the story and beloved characters. Some fans are desperate to contribute but just don't know how to write fanfiction.

From Outlander to Lord of the Rings there's definitely a genre of fanfiction for everyone. Most are well-written stories that take on new life written by fans. They can be sweet, endearing, sexy, and violent. But it's an avenue for writers and fans to express their love for a story, to take it and turn it into something they can interact with. Fanfiction writers can contribute to a medium that they love so much but weren't apart of the original creative process.

If you want to write your own fanfiction but don't know where to start, we'd like to help. Here are a few tips and tricks on how to write fanfiction.

Why Write Fanfiction?

Maybe you're wondering, why do people even write fanfiction?

Well, it's simple. If you love a TV show, book, or movie enough, you might want to take control of beloved characters. In most cases, series or movies end and you're left with nothing new. So, fans and writers take it into their own hands and write fanfiction.

While fanfiction spans various categories and genres, often times fanfic writers will continue an already known story or write a completely new plot with some of the same characters. Sometimes fanfiction is written with sexual content in mind, allowing your favorite characters to find relationships or sexual encounters with one another. Because fans control their own fanfiction, they get to do with the characters as they please.

How to Write Fanfiction for Beginners

1. Pick a Fandom You Know and Love

If you love something so much, you're going to have fun writing it. And if you have fun writing something, it will likely be written well. There are so many different types of fanfiction out there but follow your passion. I personally know nothing about Grey's Anatomy fanfiction so I wouldn't write about it. Follow the adage, "write what you know."

2. Get Your Characters Organized

Because you want to write about characters that already exist through the mind of a different author, you'll want to get your characters organized. Make sure you remember or understand their personality traits, who they might be related to, and of course, if they have a relationship with another character. Once said characters are organized and you're well-versed in their traits, your fanfiction will be as legitimate as possible.

3. Write a 'Beat Sheet'

A beat sheet is essentially a detailed outline of your story. Often used when writing television shows or movie scripts, it can still prove useful when writing your very own fanfiction. You can break down your story idea into smaller, more manageable, pieces which will help you connect everything together when you start writing.

4. Write Your Heart Out, Then Edit

All writers have their preferred methods, but with a beat sheet you'll feel more on track to write your heart out and edit later. We're following Hemmingway's recommendation of "write drunk, edit sober." Simply put, write as you wish without worrying about errors or issues. Then, when your brilliant ideas are on paper, you can go back and reread or edit accordingly.

How to Write Fanfiction

There are so many ways to write various stories. I personally think there is no right way, just one that might work for you. Reading up on tactics or listening to advice on how to write fanfiction is definitely beneficial. But, you got yourself to that place. You love a series or cast of characters so much that you're inspired to write some fanfiction. So, put pen to paper, fingers to keyboard and start writing. You never know what you might create!

Where to Post Your Fanfiction

If you're ready for the world to see your fanfiction, there are a few places you can publish your hard work. Now remember, the legality of fanfiction is confusing, so do your research before posting your fanfiction to the public.

1. Archive of Our Own

Archive of Our Own is a great place to post your fanfiction. Create an account and start writing because there are lots of people who go and visit the site to read quality fanfic.

2. FanFiction.net

FanFiction.net has so many fanfiction writers, you'll feel at home. With a wide variety of genres and tags, you'll find solace in knowing your fanfiction is among some of the most passionate stories on the internet.

3. Tumblr

Of course, Tumblr is a great place to share all mediums of art, fanfiction has a huge presence on the site.

4. Wattpad

Seeing as a few movies have been created thanks to Wattpad you should definitely publish something on the powerful storytelling platform.

Let's Keep the Conversation Going...

How are you going to start writing fanfiction? We want to know!

Tweet us @womendotcom or follow us on Facebook and Instagram!