I have no idea what I'm doing

Quitting a big bang right at the finish line

Honesty hour: I fucking hate the fic I wrote for this big bang.  I didn’t even want to post it, but I needed to because I’d committed.  But after I posted the first chapter, instead of feeling better about myself, I felt worse.  I didn’t say anything about any of this during the event, because I don’t like to shit talk people as they’re trying to do something they obviously care about, but this has been, without question, the single worst fandom event I’ve ever participated in.  I’m still not going to name the event, but I’m sure some of you know which one I’m talking about.

Between the timing of the event coinciding with the fandom making me hate everything about my fannish output and myself, and some of the early response this fic got in regards to the ship, I really truly wish I’d dropped out at the very beginning and not done this one.  The amount of people who tried to convince me that I was shipping it wrong, because they interpreted Verity differently soured me from the start, and I had to stop going into the discord server for this event because of it.  But that all stuck in my brain and made me not want to write this.  I really should have dropped out right then and there, and I regret not doing it.  But I’d committed.  So I was going to suck it up and keep going, because I didn’t want to disappoint someone I’d never met, and would never have any involvement with after October.

To some folks, this might look very familiar.

I’m not saying this looking for validation.  That ship honestly sailed months ago, and this fic is objectively terrible.  It’s passive and vague, and nothing happens in it, and if not for the fact that this is for a big bang, I never would have followed through with it.  I can write better.  I have written better.  But this one wasn’t it.

After a long conversation with my art partner, I decided to just drop out entirely today, even though posting has already started.  I’d hoped that when I started posting, I’d get excited about this fic again.  That’s happened in the past.  But when I posted it, I just felt like I was uploading garbage.  I often say that you should write garbage, and it is genuinely a very good way to break through blocks.  But I also don’t like sharing it.  Once I share it, the garbage becomes permanent.  It can’t be built upon or improved.  It’s forever garbage, and that garbage becomes part of me forever.

But the garbage had to be posted, because I’d committed.  That’s how it works, right?  You commit to something, and follow through.  But watching mutuals on Twitter this week get harassed to the point that actors from the show got involved made me realise that fandom fucking sucks.  When I was a kid in the 90s, just entering into high school and discovering these message boards and mailing lists, fandom was an escape from the trauma and abuse I was experiencing in my home.  As I became an adult, fiction became an outlet to not only process some of these traumas and abuses in a safe environment, but to explore people and humanity, and all the things that make humans human.  Writing fanfic gave me the tools to begin a professional writing career.

And now, I’ve realised the very thing that helped me process all this trauma and abuse, and allowed me to find something that I could do with my life and enjoy, has itself become a tool of trauma and abuse.  I’ve spent months trying to figure out why my anxiety has been through the roof, and I realised this week it was because I’d decided to step back into fandom.  It was because I’d made a commitment  to something that had been invalidating from the very beginning, and that had been dragging up old traumas.

So I had a talk with my artist, and we both agreed to cut our losses and step back.  Fandom is a hobby, and a hobby should not be stressful.  A hobby should not be dragging up old traumas.

But that’s exactly what it’s doing, so I quit.

I’m never participating in a fandom event again.  I’m going to distance myself from fandom on Twitter, and have already muted a whole bunch of words.  Fandom just isn’t fun anymore.

1 Comment

  1. Melissa

    I’m really sorry this is happening. You’re right that fandom should be fun! As soon as it’s not, well, you should do something that is more fun. Thank you for what you’ve done, and I hope things improve for you soon.

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