Disclaimer: All of the below is my opinion, I'm not some Fan-Fic God and I never claim to be.
Okay so this is in response to @feebadger Is Fan Fic Dead? What Is The Future Of Fan Fic On The Vine?
I've one or two ideas I'd like to share, so instead of clogging up the comments section with a rant of a post, here's what I think we could do to bring new writers and new readers in....
How To Attract Writers
1. We NEED To Be Welcoming
Now I'm not expecting everyone to shake hands with a new writer every time someone pops up on Comicvine but in order to make the fan-fic section attractive we need to do things like ANSWER QUESTIONS AND COMMENT.
- Y'know the dude that's asking a question that you secretly chuckle at and call him a noob for asking such a "basic" question, try to remember back to when you first joined we were all CLUELESS so if no one has answered the person's question and you know it, please reply to the poor soul because he'll never be able to figure out how to make a poll.
- It's been brought up many times andhas made a lovely How To Comment thread but comments are essential for people to stay interested in staying on the site, I first started posting my stories on fanfiction.net and after getting bored of barely receiving 2 or 3 comments I quickly looked for alternatives.
Once I found the vine I was delighted to find out that I'd received 16 comments! I was amazed and I think I'd have just left the site there and then if I hadn't received the feedback I did since comments are our income, we need to get more comments, it breaks my heart to see incredible stories only get a small fraction of the 500 + views they get, I'm not expecting everyone to get a comment for each view,but if you've read it give a "good job" at least since comments are important.
Also being welcoming does not mean you can't say you didn't like the story, if you didn't... give reasons why since it's really the whole point of being a fan-fic writer in my opinion to learn from your mistakes and to improve.
2. New Ideas
Now I know the whole point of this thread is for me to give my ideas but I think the Fan-Fic community here has come up with some cool ones
had an awesome idea with the character creation contest
Fan Fic'rs interview thread is always fun to read, and there are lots of new groups set up like *ahem* DC Mayhem (which I think is the best Fan-Fic group ever created and I am in no way biased even though I helped set it up...)
And there are a LOT more cool ideas out there that I'm too lazy to write about!
My points is I think the Fan-Fic forums would be even more exciting if everyone on here just posted their one good idea.
3. Get a Friend Involved
You'd be shocked by the amount of people that do not know there is fan-fic on Comic Vine. (I don't really blame them considering it's hidden underneath the forums)
But it needs more exposure and I'm not saying you should force them to set up an account on the site, just let them know that it exists.
We all have potential to be good writers in my opinion since there are so many genres out there, there's bound to be at least one thing that would fit your friend's style.
If they do end up joining....point them in the right direction, suggest a group to them that's how I got started.
How To Attract Readers
1. Open With a Good Sentence
This one you would think is fairly straight forward but it isn't, it's been proven that our attention span is beginning to drop which means it is a lot more harder nowadays to get read to sit down and read you story. How I think writers should tackle this is open up with something exciting or intriguing....
Imagine you're in a comic book store for the first ever time and you're looking around and you see thousands and thousands of comics, which one do you choose?
Well from what I can remember of my eight year old self you go for the shiniest and coolest one you can see.
The same applies to story telling, I'm not saying you have to open with a big huge explosion all it takes is a mysterious line or even a quip a character says (that's how I go interested in Daredevil)
My point is setting is great for creating atmosphere and it should definitely be used in your story but do NOT open your story with a paragraph describing how cold the floor is, because all I need to do is click that x button and go read Superman Vs Godzilla
2. Write Characters IN Character
Yet another no brainer right?
But one of the things the "average" person believes about Fan-Fic is it is a bunch of fanboys/fangirls writing their favorite characters completely out of character.
This applies to even the minor characters and admittedly in some cases they are right, Comic Vine has a great database for looking up major events in a character's life but if you don't read comics with them, then you don't get the characters voice.
Look at Superman.... he's an alien who crash landed on earth and was raised on earth, if you never read a story with him in it you'd probably think he'd be saying things like "Greeting humans...I come in peace."
3. Write Well
Hate to plug my own thread but the reason I set up How To Write Fan Fiction was so that writer's could improve the weaker parts of their writing by bringing in some of the best writers on here to talk about an aspect of writing they know well and for the most part, not because I've a big ego I think everyone should take a look at it and see if there is anything they feel they need to improve on since even the "pros" need to learn a thing or two from time to time.
Even still if you feel the thread doesn't cover a topic well enough or you'd like to find out more you can always join a group.
You may not see the point in joining one but having someone to talk to or give an opinion on something really helps, heck I'm sure if you read an awesome action scene in a story by one of the users I'm sure if you gave them a polite PM they might be able to give you advice.
Overall if you write well, readers will follow and readers will be interested in staying on the site and maybe writing some fan-fic of their own.
4. Before You Post
MAKE SURE TO EDIT! nothing scares reader's off quicker than bad grammar or misspelled words it doesn't matter how experienced or how talented you are we all need to edit, if we didn't need to edit then the likes of Marvel and DC would fire all their editor's.
What do I mean by editing?
Edit out all the spelling errors, make sure your grammar is correct and make sure every sentence works!
There's no point spending a paragraph describing something if it isn't going to mean anything later on and the more a sentence works the better and it makes reader's want to read on.
If you can try to get a friend to look at it, you'd be amazed what a new pair of eyes can tell you.
Also finally as pointed out to me by
TITLES GRAB PEOPLE'S ATTENTION!
One pro our "rivals" over at fanfiction.net has over Comicvine is they can put a logo and a description of their story to grab people's attention we unfortunately do not.
So try to make your title as interesting as possible, it doesn't have to have a title like "Super Mega Awesomo 3000" just pick something that perfectly describes what you're going for.
If it's a sci fi epic try throwing in the word "Universe" or "cosmic" that way reader's will know roughly what they're getting themselves in for.
If you need help coming up with a title then ask a group your in, maybe look at a comic or movie that is similar to it and try and point out what makes that title interesting.
If all else fails PM me I'm sure I'll be able to come up with something random for you.
Tell us about the
Events in the
5. Continue To Be Awesome
The people who have read this far are in my opinion the people that make the Fan-Fic community so great.
You care enough about the "state" of Fan-Fic on the site without getting paid a penny.
I think the state of Fan-Fic on this site will contine to be great as long as you guys are around so don't worry and finally....
THANKS FOR BEING AWESOME.