Yes, it was six years ago today -- December 4, 1997 -- that I posted my very first fanfic.
It was the X-Files that got me. My friend D. (with whom I still watch TV every week) mentored me into TXF by showing me the conspiracy arc over the summer. Season 5 started in the fall and we caught up on all the other episodes too. (I eventually returned the favour by getting him into Buffy. And Trailer Park Boys. He showed me Millennium -- bless him -- and Twin Peaks.)
I had seen fanfic before -- a Star Trek slash archive linked from some Geek Link of the Day page. I read a couple stories but they were bad. I was a Trek fan and if I'd read something good, maybe I'd have jumped in then, but it was not to be.
But when I was getting all excited about TXF, I thought -- I bet there's fanfic. So I searched and found Gossamer. I read a lot of stuff -- good, bad, indifferent. And then I read Cyanide and Astroglide and I was lost, lost, lost in the slash.
At that point there was, I believe, one X-Files slash list, so I joined it. (I think I'm still subbed, actually.) Shortly thereafter, it split into two -- one for chat and one for stories.
I loved the fic, I loved the chat, I wanted to be a part of it. So I decided I had to write a story. I started in on a casefile which was a crossover with Sweet Valley High. (I should probably note that I was in my twenties at this point. And not my early twenties.) It was based on a Sweet Valley Kids Super Snooper book -- The Case of the Alien Princess. The kids are abducted by aliens, have to solve a mystery on another planet, then get returned to earth. There's some textual evidence that the abduction really happened.
My story took place during SVH grade twelve (but not that awful Final Year crap) and TXF S1. Jessica and some of the others were beginning to remember the abduction. Elizabeth was, of course, skeptical. Jessica got in touch with Mulder and he and Scully came to town.
There was some business with Jessica chasing Mulder and Mulder maybe having a very mild thing with Todd Wilkins (Todd was 18 in the story) and Scully getting together with Mr Collins and possibly some gratuitous Chrome Dome jokes.
But I never finished it.
Instead, I wrote and posted a parody, with a rather odd pairing. I got seven pieces of feedback and I still know one of those people now. (Actually, looking through feedback in the first six months, *holds up Magic Mirror* I see flambeau and eliade and katallison and mamadeb and laurashapiro and viridian5 and kormantic.) Then I wrote something that was even stranger. And it went from there.
I was quite prolific, specializing in odd pairings and short humour pieces. It wasn't until 1999 that I branched out, fandom-wise, into Star Wars. Then XMM, then Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and now Stargate. Plus bits and pieces of other things along the way.
And now we're watching X-Files on Monday nights, the good seasons, and the love is back and I feel like I'm back to the beginning.
Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.
I had a hard time thinking what I should write here. I didn't want to do a whole autobiography -- My Life In Fandom. Or go off on the usual "back in the X-Files days" ramble (maybe you're thinking I already did that, but believe you me, that's not the ramble). But if there's something you'd like to hear about those six long years, ask away. :)
It's been so much fun. Thank you to everyone who's been there along the way. And just so you can see where I began, look for My First X-Files Story in the next post.