From fan fiction to best-seller?

Hiya guys!

Would you believe it’s AUGUST already? OMGS. Time passes so quickly when you’re procrastinating. LOL.

Oh and you might have heard the news: Fifty Shades of Grey – a book that was born from an erotic fan fiction of the (gasp!) Twilight universe spun by Stephanie Meyers – had outsold all SEVEN of J. K. Rowling’s HARRY POTTER books on Amazon. E. L. James, the author, had effectively cornered the market on “mummy porn” because it contained various exciting scenes of S&M sex between a drop-dead gorgeous rich guy & a impossibly-naive girl.

Now I’ve personally contributed to the author’s obscene million earnings by buying E. L. James’ “steamy” book on Kobo, but far from being intrigued like the “Porn Mummies”, I stop reading Book 1 halfway coz it reminded me too much of Bella and Edward.  You might want to read the reviews on this book, if you don’t understand why there is so much fuss over it. I’m not going to bash it here, coz enough of it had been done around the web. My point to bringing this title is to show you that even a fan fiction can turn out to be a hit with your audience. E. L. James originally wrote it as a fan fiction, but due to its overly erotic content, she re-posted it on her website at FiftyShades.Com and later re-wrote it as an original piece.

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The world is bigger than you think

So you might have been writing fan fiction so far and even gotten a lot of positive reviews for it, but have you ever considered moving on from building on other people’s worlds to building one of your own? Sounds daunting, huh? Considering Tolkien not only built Middle Earth from the ground up, he also created the elvish language for it. Heh. Well, you’re not alone. I’m no expert myself and I do struggle with trying to make up a world that will fit my story. In fact, I worry that I may have too few details to lure my readers and I believe that’s a common problem that besets us writers. But build it slowly, no one said you had to build it in an instant. Do your research. Google is an excellent tool to have. Speak to people of various races, inclinations, religious beliefs, gender, hobbies, occupation etc. You’ll be surprised just what are the kind of people you will meet and who will inspire your work.

Why, just the other day, I met a retired doctor who told me all about the joys of watching Harness Racing in Australia. And I’ve never even heard of that sport before I met him. Richard Castle from the ABC dramedy “Castle” even follows a police detective around so he can base his latest book on her! Mukul Deva, a best-selling author from India, also does his research by speaking to people who have the necessary knowledge to further his plot. So really, there is so much to be explored out there in the world out there.

So leave the comfort zone of your fan fiction and write something that truly belongs to you, and not someone else.

PS: Before I forget, I want you guys to read this interview by Bestseller Labs on Lorna Suzuki. She’s the author of IMAGO CHRONICLES, which is also optioned for movie production! Impressive, ne?

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2 thoughts on “From fan fiction to best-seller?

  1. The thing was, it’s not like I hadn’t been exposed to this level of erotica before. However, they had been obtained through friends when I was younger…the books passed around so many times they were falling apart. They were also relegated to reading in private…not wanting anyone to see the cover. Now I had an almost unlimited supply of erotic fanfiction, no cover to worry about anyone seeing and a whole community of women I could speak with openly about these fics.

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