Susan and I have been talking about writing for fun lately. She talks about needing more fun in her life in her post today, and it got me thinking about myself. She mentioned this weekend that she thought I should write some fan fiction. Which spawned a really interesting discussion of fan fiction, but that’s not actually what I want to talk about.
I have never at any point in my life had any inclination to write fan fiction. I almost never read any unless somebody sends me a link to something truly awesome (like this Star Wars fan fic about Han and Leia that Susan sent me for Star Wars Day–it’s adorable) because so much of it is…well, bad. Unlike Susan, I can’t turn off the critical editor and I DO still mind if the prose is a mess and there are typos and errors and comma splices and all manner of purple prose. All that aside, I’ve never felt compelled to write it because God knows, I have enough of my own ideas, so I have no need to co-opt the characters or world of anybody else.
But that still leaves the issue of when the last time was I wrote something purely for fun. That would probably be pre-graduate school. Because in graduate school was the point at which I started taking writing as a career seriously. Which is not to say that I didn’t have fun writing all the things I’ve written in the last seven years, but none of it was written purely FOR fun. All of it was with an eye to publication, to improving my craft, learning more, getting BETTER. And it’s not like those things are mutually exclusive from fun, but all of those things change my mindset about writing. And it makes it a lot more likely that I see something purely for fun as somehow a waste of my limited time.
After Susan’s suggestion about writing some fan fic, I was wondering if I might write something purely for fun and throw it up on Wattpad. Something that isn’t planned and plotted to the nth degree and isn’t for ultimate publication. Just for fun.
And even writing that made my eye twitch.
The idea of pantsing something…ON PURPOSE, is almost enough to give me hives. Dear God in heaven, HOW did I ever do this all the time? I can’t even fathom that anymore. I think, at the very least, I’d have to have the structure and one of those brief bullet point outlines before I started. It’s my security blanket…
Ultimately, I have no idea what I’ll end up doing. I’m finishing Riven first and foremost. And after that…we’ll see.