So I'm in the middle of reading Rainbow Rowell's FANGIRL.
It's a little creepy how well she gets inside a fangirl's head. In fact, the first thing I highlighted in my little Kindle was this quote:
“Why do we write fiction?” Professor Piper asked.
Cath looked down at her notebook.
I think I've talked ad nauseum about my first foray into fan fiction. In high school and college, I rolled my eyes at the fan fiction authors. Especially when they did the whole self-insert Mary Sue business.
But then I started writing original fiction again several years ago and I didn't know anyone who would crit my work. I had no idea where to find people outside the confines of a college classroom.
So I repurposed it. I posted it as fan fiction hoping to get some feedback.
But at the same time, as Rowell's character notes, I did it to disappear into something that was not my life. It wasn't my ongoing divorce. It wasn't the stress of trying to find a job and worrying about money and trying to keep my kids together at the same time as I was losing myself.
Even as I've left fan fiction behind (for the most part), my own original fiction isn't to silence voices in my head or to get feelings out; it's to disappear into a world where everything is in my control and nothing ever goes against my plans, even if the characters might not agree.
I'm enjoying this journey Cath is taking as she ventures out of her self-imposed exile into fandom. I'm just a little scared of what's going to happen to her when she finally takes the full plunge into real life instead of dipping her toe in.
The water's cold.