Fifty Shades of Grey: Fanfiction as a Valid Form of Literature

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If you’ve ever read Fifty Shades of Grey, you may or may not know that the bestselling novel started as Twilight fan fiction. Popular opinion states that it is a bad book with terrible writing yet there were enough people to disagree because the story did get filmed. Does this success make fan fiction a valid form of literature? Some may think it does because this proves that fan fiction can be written in a highly creative, or emotionally evocative way, or match things up better than the writer did; others may disagree because they see the work as being ham-handed self-insertion or plot-less sex. I believe fan fiction can be a way for writers to explore the different possibilities without having to come up with their own story.

Some people feel that fan fiction has no place being published in any form; which includes the internet. They see it as a violation of copyright. In their point of view fan fiction is, at its core, a derivative work. Nobody can tell anyone that they can’t write fan fiction for themselves, but the moment it gets put out there for everybody to read - whether it gets sold or not - it might be seen as breaking the law. Most times, fan fiction is a non-commercial endeavour, largely written in communities of like-minded folk. This means that the writers write it without getting paid, the readers don’t pay anything to read the work and no one gets offended because both the production and consumption are entirely consensual. Fiction already is a safe place to explore ones writing preferences because it is a fantasy world where no real people get harmed, fan fiction is even better for writers who only just get started because it’s not their own stories they are writing about. They get to figure out what it is they want to write about without having to worry about getting stuck in the middle of a story or whether other people want to read it or not. Fan fiction is something a writer can write for their own entertainment and readers can use it as a way to explore other aspects of a certain story they like or just to put their minds of things like one would with any ordinary book.

I believe we should see fan fiction as a form of literature. This is because we can enjoy it the same way we enjoy other genres of writing and people who don’t like it simply don’t have to read it.

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Fifty Shades of Grey: Fanfiction as a Valid Form of Literature. (2020, December 14). WritingBros. Retrieved July 14, 2024, from
“Fifty Shades of Grey: Fanfiction as a Valid Form of Literature.” WritingBros, 14 Dec. 2020,
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