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You can call me Hal.

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What are the fanfic words?
There are certain words that always make me think, "Ah, yes, I am reading fanfic." They are not bad words in and of themselves, but they seem to occur more often in fanfic than in any other prose I read. Here are a few off the top of my head:

* Ghost, used as a verb. "Jack's fingers ghosted over Daniel's skin."

* Cant. "Kara stood, canted in the doorway, and looked Sharon up and down."

* Ruck. "Kaidoh's hair was rumpled and his shirt rucked up over his belly."

Got any more?

eta: Just to be clear, I'm not talking about badfic and its tropes. Generally, I see these words in good fiction.

If that one shows up anywhere, I cannot take it seriously.

I only ever see the first one, never the other two. Hrm.

I don't see "cant" a lot, but sometimes and I *never* see it anywhere else. Ruck I do see from time to time. Also, I've probably used it myself.

pucker as a noun (no lemons here)...
Oh, and nobody's eyes are ever "hooded" or "changeable" except in fanfic *L*

and of course, the ever evil "prostrate" as a noun *LOL!

Laved for sure! And I think there could be several chapters on "eyes in fanfic". *g*

Oh, yes, all three of those. Hips seem to "cant" a lot, too.

People in fanfic are also always "capturing" someone else's lips (giving me the image of a surreal, Dalí-esque pair of lips in a cage) and "carding" through someone else's hair -- I admit the latter is an evocative image, suggesting the way hair can sort of fall over in successive waves as you run your fingers through it. But still, it's odd.

"Carding" -- good one! I think these are the kinds of words that are good the first time someone uses them, but when other people pick them up, they start to stand out too much.

If I never see another pair of tongues battling for dominance ... then I will have probably cured myself of trolling for fic in obscure fandoms on ff.net.

Battling tongues, new from Hasbro...

and when they're not battling, they're dueling *L* "My name is Inigo Montongue-a; you killed my fanfic, prepare to die!"

Carded. "He carded his fingers through Daniel's hair."

Bed. Yes, I said bed! Even the best writers succumb to the lure of this dialogue exchange: "Bed?" "Bed. Now." *rolls eyes*


Possibly all one-word dialogue should be re-evaluated. :)

Okay, after reading a post on a friend's LJ about whether a certain demon exterminating female from the Japanese feudal era wears undergarments (she wouldn't, by the way), I came across a word that is perfect for what you're looking for.

Rakish. As in, a rakish grin. It's just... there's nothing wrong with the word itself, but it screams fanfiction.

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I don't know if I have ever come across the verb "cant". I certainly don't know what it means, though from your usage it seems to mean to shift your weight or stand at an angle. I guess I haven't been reading the right fanfic.

The other two are right on, especially "ruck", which I suspect was actually invented by slash fandom, and the OED just had to retcon it.

Fisting. Whole lot of fisting going on in fanfic. (What is wrong with 'clenching'?)

I read this comment and thought that 'clenching' was a new word I didn't know for shoving your fist into someone's nether holes. (hee, nether holes)

Then I realised what you meant.

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How do you use it? I used to say my cat quirked her ears.

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What does 'cant' mean ? *worries*

It means to slant or bevel something, to give it angle. Rather hard to do with things such as, oh, your hips. :)

Rather funnily, it also means a rather boring speech filled with trite statements. :)


Also, I can't say that I've noticed "cant," but the other two, definitely.

I think taut might or might not ping me, depending on how it was used.

I find that, while not signs of bad fiction, it is a trap. I have committed these offenses. Most good writer's in fandom have. It is that search for a word when the word becomes elusive and you don't want to use that same old boring one yet again. So touched becomes ghosted, combed becomes carded, leaned against the doorframe becomes canted their hips lazily.


It is the curse of the Harlequin romance novel I do believe.

I wouldn't call any of these an offense by any means. Just unusual words that seem to get used a lot in fanfic. I'm trying to compile a list of them so I can avoid them in the future. :)

Actually, I like using the same old boring words over and over. I think if they're plain enough, they're nearly invisible. But my taste is for very plain prose and I realise that not everybody feels the same way.

"snick" and "snicked" for the sound of a door closing. (I know this for fact because geekturnedvamp never allows its use [g].)

Hee! "Snicked" makes me think of Wolverine.

"Husk" as a verb: "I've never killed a wildebeast before," he husked.

This never bothered me until I saw it on someone's list of fanfic peeves, and now it leaps out at me every time.

Yes. You beat me to "husk". Grrrr.