Fan fiction and parodies of it

The latest print issue of World Press Review excerpts an interesting article on fan fiction (focusing on slash), which appeared in The Age in early January:

Slash fiction now arguably forms the bulk of all published fanfic. Slash, it should be noted, is not tatty porn. Much of its coy tone owes more to mid-century bodice-ripper novels than, for example, the Letters page in Penthouse. Further, its more eminent exponents write with precision and confidence. Slash has a canon and a system of mentorship, or “beta reading”, that ought to inspire envy in any emerging novelist.

I’d rather spend an afternoon dehydrating fruit with Mom in preparation for the apocalypse than read slash, but I do get a kick out of parodies of it. See, e.g., Jeff Ousborne’s “Excerpts from NPR Fan Fiction.” Here’s an excerpt:

From “Terry and Me” by J.R.
(“Fresh Air,” m/f, water sports, NC-17).

From my perch as engineer, I could tell that the David Mamet interview hadn’t gone well, and that linguist Geoffrey Nunberg’s closing essay was flat. Terry removed her glasses, and rubbed her eyes with the heels of her hands. It was late, the studio was empty. I had polished off that bottle of pinot noir about 20 minutes ago. Right on time, I thought. I rose from the console, and put my muscular arm around her shoulders. Terry flinched at the contact, then melted into my embrace. I ran my hands–so powerful from years of jazz and classical piano–through her short hair, gently at first, but then with more urgency. “You’re highly attractive, John,” she said. My bladder ached.


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