->''Fan fiction is what literature might look like if it were reinvented from scratch after a nuclear apocalypse by a band of brilliant pop-culture junkies trapped in a sealed bunker.''
-->-- '''[[http://www.time.com/time/arts/article/0,8599,2081784,00.html This Time article]]''' discussing [[MostFanficWritersAreGirls a certain phenomenon]].

''[[LetsSeeYouDoBetter If you want something done right, do it yourself.]]''

Fan Fiction is a form of Alternate or Expanded Universe created by the fans of a work, rather than the work's original creator. Fan Fiction, or "Fanfics" as they are often called, are written for any number of reasons, such as:
* to continue a story that ended prematurely (see {{Continuation}});
* to redo a story the way the author thinks it ''should'' have gone (see FixFic);
* to see what would happen if certain characters are placed in unusual situations (see AlternateUniverseFic),
* to see what happens when the characters of one franchise encounter the characters of another franchise (see {{Crossover}});
* to imagine oneself in the fictional universe (see SelfInsertFic);
* to get the characters to have sex with, date, marry, have children with, or have crushes on, each other or the author (see {{Shipping}})

Due to the inexperience of many fanfic writers, fan fiction has gained a reputation for being a source of [[SoBadItsGood horrible,]] ''[[SoBadItsGood horrible]]'' [[SoBadItsGood writing]]. However there are fanfics out there that are [[FanFicRecommendations INCREDIBLY]] [[SturgeonsLaw good]]. Sometimes being just as good as, if not better than, the original work.

Fan fiction is often the place where EpilepticTrees are planted and cultivated. Expect many, many, ''many'' more fics to star the EnsembleDarkhorse than TheHero.

Saying "It was a fanfic episode," though, is not usually a compliment.

Some franchises -- such as ''Franchise/StarTrek'' -- have actually turned fan fiction into a profit center by creating {{Tie In Novel}}s. These books are usually penned by young and upcoming authors, often former fanfic writers, and represent an intermediate state between fan fiction and completely original fiction.

Although fanfic exploded along with [[TheInternet the Internet]], it existed ''well'' before the Net did. Such luminaries as John Stuart Mill contributed unauthorized, original stories set in a fictional universe. Before medieval French troubadours were shipping [[Myth/ArthurianLegend Lancelot and Guinevere]], the ancient Greeks were writing plays about relationships between characters in ''Literature/TheIliad''. In Creator/{{Plato}}'s ''Literature/{{Symposium}}'' one character complains that a play by Creator/{{Aeschylus}} got the characterization of Achilles and Patroclus wrong. [[SlashFic Namely, that it got the]] LoverAndBeloved dynamic backwards.

Not all fanfic is written, though that's the most common form. It can be in any [[{{Formats}} format]] that can tell a story. In Japan, ''{{doujinshi}}'' (amateur "comic books") are a common vehicle; and with the increasing ease of their production on personal computers, [[FanVid fan videos]] (ranging from {{anime}} series, to ''Franchise/StarWars'') have already appeared.

The distinction between fanfic and original fiction, as we know it today, is largely created by modern copyright law; much of classical writing is actually "fanfiction" based on older sources. The major distinction between fanfic and a story inspired by another story is that the story a fanfic is based on has one or more "official" versions, usually owned by a company, a creator, or both. Thus, things like ''[[http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/text/infancythomas-a-mrjames.html The Infancy Gospel of Thomas]]'', a piece of biblical apocrypha featuring [[CharacterizationTags Angry!Uber!]]Baby Jesus, or variations on [[Myth/ArthurianLegend Arthurian legend]] where there is no Holy Grail and Lancelot's affair with Guinevere never happens, would not "count" by this definition.

No statement on the legality of fanfic has ever been given in American formal law or in its courts. Some argue that it's a form of copyright infringement; however, see [[http://digitalcommons.lmu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1347&context=elr "Legal Fictions: Copyright, Fan Fiction, and a New Common Law"]], and note the above precedents. The two most common arguments for fanfic being legal involve either implied consent -- companies and authors have every right to enact a FanworkBan as evidenced by fanfiction.net's banlist but are mostly tolerant -- or fair use -- the non-profit, educational and transformative use of the work justifies its existence. The latter is the main argument that sparked the development of the Organization of Transformative Works, a fan labor advocacy site.

Authors often have conflicted reactions to fan fiction set in "their" universe, which sometimes leads to the aforementioned FanworkBan. Creator/JKRowling has largely embraced ''Franchise/HarryPotter'' fanfics, albeit with certain limitations, for example, and Creator/TamoraPierce [[http://www.tamora-pierce.net/frequently-asked-questions/publishing-faq/ advises aspiring writers]] that fan fiction can be a good way to hone one's writing skills. By contrast, Sir Creator/TerryPratchett acknowledged it exists and was cool about it, pointing out that ''everything works so long as people are sensible about it.'' He added two caveats: anyone doing ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' fanfics shouldn't even ''think'' of doing it for money, and authors should take care not to put it where he might see it. Creator/GeorgeRRMartin, author of the epic fantasy series ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'', [[http://grrm.livejournal.com/151914.html expressed his disdain for the practice]], saying that "creating your own characters is a part of writing." He's even gone so far as to threaten legal action should he become aware of any fan fiction set in the Westeros universe. In contrast, writer/journalist James Bow [[http://bowjamesbow.ca/2010/05/07/in-defence-of-f.shtml makes a rather firm case]] for supporting fanfics, pointing out that it forms a stepping stone ''towards'' creating your own characters and setting. As far as media businesses are concerned, reactions have ranged from Franchise/ArchieComics demanding immediate removal to Creator/{{Paramount}} taking some of the better ''Franchise/StarTrek'' fanfics and having them published in print books.

It should probably be noted that several big-name authors are ''themselves'' writers of fanfics. Both Creator/StephenKing and Creator/NeilGaiman have written (for example) stories dealing with Cthulhu, Dracula, and Sherlock Holmes, and label these stories fanfics. Contributors to franchises such as ''Series/DoctorWho'' such as Creator/PaulCornell have often posted wholly unofficial stories to their blogs and websites, above and beyond their fully licensed scripts and novels.

In the end, more and more media outlets are recognizing that fanfiction and other fan works are a simple fact of life. And as art imitates life, it's now possible to find "fake" fanfiction created as part of a marketing campaign. For example, the 2010 season of Showtime's ''Series/UnitedStatesOfTara'' introduced a new character, an artist who had created and published a comic book character named "Princess Valhalla Hawkwind". As part of the promotional buildup for this, Showtime actually created a [[http://www.princessvalhalla.com "fan site"]] complete with fanfic, fan art, and fan video.

Some fanfiction becomes well-known enough to influence other fanfics, which themselves influence more fanfics, and so on in a domino effect. This can and does result in the creation and perpetuation of {{fanon}}, when one author comes up with a "cool detail" and others blindly copy it without realizing it was her invention. Furthermore, characters can become [[{{Flanderization}} Flanderized]] by the feedback loops of fanfiction, sometimes [[MemeticMutation changing dramatically from their original form]].

One problem with fanfiction is sometimes writers don't do their research even when it is very simple. A common occurrence is when an author from a country other than the original work's country of origin writes characters as if they are from their own country. An example is Harry Potter where non-British writers (particularly American) make characters act and think like an American would; this also happens vice versa as seen in Fifty Shades of Grey.

Eventually, this accretion of fan-born details and mutations turns into things that "everybody knows" about the series. Those new to or unfamiliar with the original material are frequently confused into believing that it ''obviously'' must be {{canon}} if so many people mention it, even "facts" of the EpilepticTrees variety. This is especially the case with series that have long runs and which gloss over details which are unimportant to the plot but are of interest to the fans and the fan writers.

One famous example of this is the manga/anime ''Manga/RanmaOneHalf'', released well before the Internet became ubiquitous and when many fans had no easy access to the original source material. All manner of details (including the explanation of Akane's mallet as either a [[KiAttacks ki attack]] or as residing in a [[HyperspaceMallet hyperdimensional pocket]], her {{Flanderization}} into a "psychobitch", her [[LethalChef lethal cooking]] (rather than being just bad), and the names and fates of the many {{missing mo|m}}thers were never touched on in the show but became standardized in ''Ranma'' fan fiction over the course of approximately a decade. The process was accelerated and exacerbated by the appearance of fanfiction written by people who had never actually seen the show itself and whose only exposure to ''Ranma'' was other fanfiction.

Another famous example is the ''Literature/HarryPotter'' fanfic ''FanFic/TheDracoTrilogy'', which was apparently so widely read that details such as Blaise Zabini being female and Ginny's name being Virginia were taken to be canon, [[{{Jossed}} although they were both refuted by later books]].

It's not surprising that fans of some shows occasionally pen [=FAQs=] solely to reduce the accumulation of {{fanon}} in this way.

Currently, the [[NotableFanfictionArchives largest source of fanfiction on the Net]] (and probably anywhere else) is the [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin aptly named]] Website/FanFictionDotNet, which as of 2013, offers approximately nine million stories across all but a select few canons (which were banned due to creator request) and an automated system for posting. A newer site called an Website/ArchiveOfOurOwn is starting to nip at Website/FanFictionDotNet's heels though with over 1.7 million stories and less restrictions on what can and can not be posted. And to top it all off, in mid-2013, Amazon.com joined in the act with its Kindle Worlds program, which allows for the publication and sale (!) of fan fiction from specific 'verses.

See also MemeticMutation and {{Shipping}}. For fanfic-specific tropes, see FanficTropes.

Of course, [[FanFicRecommendations the hive mind have a few favorites.]] [[SoBadItsGood/FanWorks There are also a few favorite unfavorites]], if that doesn't [[LogicBomb confuse you too much]]. [[TroperWorks Some here have even written a few.]]

Note that since this is intended to be an index of fics with pages, a RedLink will be frowned on and given a very brief (week or two) grace period before being removed by your fellow tropers. Start the page for the fic if you think it should be in this index.

'''This page is for fanfiction. Other types of fan work belong on the subpages of FanWork (FanFilm, FanVid, FilkSong, and so on).''' We're working on moving the misplaced works-- help {{Fan Film}}s, {{Fan Vid}}s, and others get to their correct index!

%% The following is an admin message. Please do not remove it.
'''Special note for authors of fanfics:''' The fact that you wrote the fic gives you no say in whether or not we have a write up on it, unless you create the page for it yourself. Furthermore, you do not have more say on the contents of the page than any other author. You quite expressly do ''not'' have the right to have our page taken down because you wish to disown your work or because you don't like the tropes we have found in it. The page here is ours. The fic is yours. Those are different things.
%% -- admin message ends
!!Categories of Fanfics

''By format'':
* AfterActionReport: A fan-fiction based on a game.
* {{Drabble}}: A fan-fiction that is 100 words long.
* {{Lemon}}: A fan-fiction which explicitly contains sex. Banned on fanfiction.net if the sex is explicit enough to warrant an MA rating, though there has been some disagreement over where the line between M rated and MA rated content should be drawn.
* {{Lime}}: The fanfiction has sex in it, but it's not explicit; softcore Lemon.
* LogFic: A story told in the form of a computer document.
* {{MST}}: Story in which characters riff a previously written work via snarky comments inserted into the original text. Banned on fanfiction.net.
* PoemFic: ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin.
* ScriptFic: A fan-fiction in the form of a script. Banned on fanfiction.net.
* SongFic: ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin. Banned on fanfiction.net if copyrighted lyrics are quoted within the text.

''By genre'':
* AccusationFic: A fan-fiction where an episode is rewritten so that the character the author blamed gets the worst of it.
* CoffeeShopAUFic: A fan-fiction set at a coffee shop, usually in a romantic context.
* CrackFic: Bizarre fan-fiction.
* CurtainFic: A fan-fiction that has a domestic chore as the plot.
* DarkFic: A fan-fiction which is much more serious than the official work.
* DeathFic: Killing off a character in fan-fiction.
* FusionFic: A {{Crossover}} where the characters in Work A replace the characters in Work B.
* GenFic: A fanfic with no shipping.
* HighSchoolAU: Rewriting the characters as high school students.
* HurtComfortFic: A fan-fiction about Alice comforting Bob who is emotionally or physically hurt. Sometimes focuses more on the hurt than the comfort, or vice versa, which can lead to the subgenres Hurt No Comfort and Comfort No Hurt.
* KidFic: A fan-fiction where characters start a family.
* {{Lemon}}: See format description.
* {{Lime}}: As above.
* NextGenFic: A fan-fiction about the descendants of the characters.
* PeriodFic: A fan-fiction about placing the characters in a different time period.
* PerspectiveFlip: A re-write of the original events, but from a completely different point of view -- often that of the villain.
* PornWithoutPlot: The story is dirty, but has no plot.
* PornWithPlot: The story is ''still'' dirty, but ''does'' have a plot.
* RationalFic: A fan-fiction written to reward the canon author for their good thinking.
* [[RecursiveFanfiction Recursive Fic]]: When a fan-fiction gets popular enough to have fan-fiction of its own.
* SeriesFic: A series of fanfics.
* SlashFic: {{Shipping}} of two characters of the same gender. Generally called slash for men and femslash for women.
* SoulmateAUFic: A fan-fiction that involves soulmates meeting each other.
* {{WAFF}} (Warm And Fuzzy Feeling): A fan-fiction designed to be cute.
* WarFic: A fan-fiction where the characters fight in a war.
* ZombieFic: A ZombieApocalypse in a fan-fiction.

''By relationship with canon'':
* AlternateHistory (where "canon" here is RealLife)
* AlternateUniverseFic: The rules of the canon have been warped.
* {{Continuation}}: Continuing the story.
* DeconstructionFic: {{Deconstruction}} through fan-fiction.
* ElsewhereFic: A fan-fiction set somewhere that is not where the main characters are.
* FilmFic: A fan-fiction which is the plot of a film.
* FixFic: The writer is re-writing the story the way they think it "should" be.
* ForWantOfANail: Small change starts major event.
* HateFic: A fan-fiction which kills everyone off.
* OriginalFlavour: A very good fan-fiction, often that sticks as close as it can to the original canon material.
* ParodyFic: A fan-fiction spoofing the original work.
* PatchworkFic: Characters from different adaptations are in the same story.
* PeggySue: Character finds themselves back in time with the chance to change history.
* RevengeFic: A fan-fiction that has something bad happen to a character the writer doesn't like.
* SuperFic: The characters are re-imagined as superheroes.
* TrollFic: A fan-fiction that is supposed to be bad.
* PseudocanonicalFic: Expanding the universe.

!!Fanfics by medium:
* FanWorks/AnimeAndManga
* FanWorks/ComicBooks
* FanWorks/ComicStrips
* FanWorks/{{Crossovers}}
* FanWorks/FanWorks
* [[FanWorks/AnimatedFilms Films Animation]]
* [[FanWorks/LiveActionFilms Films Live-Action]]
* FanWorks/{{Literature}}
* FanWorks/LiveActionTV
* FanWorks/{{Music}}
* FanWorks/OtherMedia (Advertising, Puppet Shows, Theater, Theme Parks, Toys...)
* FanWorks/TabletopGames
* FanWorks/VideoGames
* FanWorks/VisualNovels
* FanWorks/WebAnimation
* FanWorks/WebComics
* FanWorks/WebOriginal
* FanWorks/WesternAnimation
* FanWorks/RealLife

%% Only authors with Creator/ or Tropers/ pages go here.
* Creator/AAPessimal
* Creator/AgentMatt
* {{Creator/Amoridere}}
* @/BMeph
* Creator/{{Bleedman}}
* Creator/BookwormGal
* Tropers/{{Century}} (''Fanfic/WarriorsOfTheWorld'')
* FanFic/ChateuLosElForests
* Creator/{{Cjupsher}}
* Creator/CleolindaJones
* Creator/ConveyusPrime
* Creator/CoryOfPRIVATECorp
* Creator/DakariKingMykan
* Creator/DanKim
* Creator/DavidGonterman (''ComicBook/SonicTheHedgehog'', ''Anime/SailorMoon'', ''Franchise/PowerRangers'', ''Disney/PeterPan'')
* Creator/DetsniyOffSkiword
* Creator/DGDDavidson
* Creator/EliezerYudkowsky
* Creator/EmmaIveli
* Creator/EnchantedLucy
* Creator/{{Evilhumour}}
* Troper/{{Firechick12012}}
* Creator/{{Finmonster}}
* Creator/{{Fiondil}}
* Creator/Foobar137 (''WesternAnimation/PhineasAndFerb'')
* Creator/ForteKham617
* Creator/FrolloFreak
* Creator/{{Garfieldodie}}
* Creator/HansVonHozel (Pretty much everything....InNameOnly)
* Creator/HyperInuyasha
* Tropers/{{Iheartgod175}}
* Creator/{{Insaneponyauthor}}
* Creator/{{InsertNameHere}}
* Tropers/{{Iowaforever}}
* Creator/{{Kaiimi}}
* Creator/{{Katzsoa}}
* Creator/{{Kelothan}}
* @/LadyNorbert
* Creator/LegendaryBiologist (''Anime/{{Gungrave}}'')
* Creator/{{Legendbringer}}
* Creator/{{Lucillia}}
* Fanfic/{{Lyricwritesprose}}
* Creator/{{madsthenerdygirl}}
* Creator/MellyOHara
* @/{{metalsonic655}}
* Creator/MF217
* Creator/{{Milarqui}}
* Creator/MisterP (''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'')
* Creator/MonicaGilbeyBieber ''(WesternAnimation/SpongebobSquarepants)''
* Creator/MonRa
* Creator/MontyOum
* Creator/MorwenTindomerel (''Literature/TheLordOfTheRings'', other fandoms)
* Creator/MrTrollXDD
* Creator/{{Naglfar}}
* Creator/{{Niceperson}}
* Fanfic/NickTheUltimaswordWielder
* Creator/NimbusLlewelyn
* Creator/PerkyGoth14
* Creator/PeterChimaera
* FanFic/PhantomsAnge
* Tropers/PolishValsion (''[[{{Fanfic/AceCombatTheEquestrianWar}} Ace Combat: The Equestrian War]]'')
* Creator/RalphHayesJr
* Creator/RatedRPonyStar
* Creator/RoseOfPollux
* Creator/SanityRequiem
* Creator/ShakespeareHemmingway
* Creator/ShadowCrystalMage
* Creator/{{Shebakoby}}
* Creator/{{Shortskirtsandexplosions}}
* Fanfic/SideshowJazz1
* Creator/SolariusScorch
* Creator/SueMary / [=MarissaTheWriter=]
* Creator/{{Starcharter 75}} (''WesternAnimation/StevenUniverse'')
* Creator/{{Swing 123}}
* Fanfic/TalosAngel
* Creator/{{Tangent}}
* Creator/{{Tastychainsaws}}
* Creator/TheApocryphalOne
* Creator/{{the ultimateSora}}
* Creator/UltamiteNineball
* Creator/{{Vathara}} (Tons, generally in crossover form.)
* Creator/{{Voltalia}}
* FanFic/TheWarioBarkerCollection
* @/{{Wax}}
* Creator/{{Weavillain}} (WesternAnimation/TheLoudHouse)
* Creator/WinterRae
* Creator/YoshizillaRhedosaurus
* Creator/ZeroTheClusterZero
* Creator/{{Zokusho}}

!!''See also'':
* CompletedFic
* FanFicRecommendations
* NotableFanfictionArchives
* FanficTropes
* FanficsOfThe2000s
* FanficsOfThe2010s
* FanWebcomics

-->'''Statler''': These stories did do something right.
-->'''Waldorf''': What do you mean?
-->'''Statler''': They make the source material look amazing in comparison!
-->'''Both''': Ohohohohohohohohohohohoho!