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This is an index page for Tropes which are typical of Fanfics. Given that fanfiction probably was born only a few minutes after the creation of the first (really good) original story, these are likely among some of the oldest tropes in existence. In addition most of the Tropes in original fiction can also appear in fanfiction.


Tropes

  • 30-Sue Pileup: A fanfic writer includes several variations of the Mary Sue archetype in the same story.
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  • Acceptable Breaks from Canon: Deviations from official continuity that fans will generally accept in fanworks.
  • Accusation Fic: A fan-fiction where an episode is rewritten so that the character the author blamed gets the worst of it.
  • After-Action Report: A type of fan-fiction for strategy games that involves a blow-by-blow description of a campaign.
  • Aliens Made Them Do It: Aliens force the characters to have sex.
  • Alternate Universe Fic: A fanfic which deviates from canon.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: A character's personality and motives are viewed differently from how they are normally seen.
  • Ascended Fan Fic: A published work that started out as a fan written story.
  • Backstory: A story that occurred before the main narrative.
  • Beige Prose: Very plain writing with little, if anything, in the way of description.
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  • Betrayal Fic: A fan-fiction where the main character is betrayed by their loved ones, usually resulting in a swift change of alliances and demeanor.
  • Better Than Canon: Fans prefer Fanon to what is canon.
  • "Burly Detective" Syndrome: Overuse of epithets in place of the characters' names.
  • Canon Defilement: Fanfics tend to include whatever the author wants it to, but this is an Audience Reaction for when the artistic license goes a little too far.
  • Canon Sue: A Mary Sue who is a canonical character.
  • Characterization Tags
  • Coffee Shop AU Fic: A fan-fiction set at a coffee shop, usually in a romantic context.
  • Common Crossover: When two works have a tendency to be crossed over in fan-fiction.
  • Completed Fic: A fic which has been completed.
  • Continuation: Continuing the story.
  • Conveniently Common Kink: Two characters (who are usually partners) share a rare fetish.
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  • Copy Cat Sue: A Mary Sue who is a carbon copy of the creator's favorite character (same abilities, same backstory, etc.)
  • Costume Porn: Elaborate descriptions of what characters are wearing.
  • Crack Fic: Bizarre fan-fiction.
  • Crossover: A fanfic which includes characters from two or more different works.
  • Curtain Fic: A fan-fiction that has a domestic chore as the plot.
  • Dark Fic: A fan fiction that is much darker than the work it is based on.
  • A Day in the Limelight: A minor character is given focus for the current episode.
  • Dead Fic: A fic which has not been completed and probably never will be.
  • Death Fic: A fan fiction about a character dying.
  • Deconstruction Crossover: Works which involve crossovers from multiple fictional universes in order to deconstruct those fictional universes.
  • Deconstruction Fic: Deconstruction through fan-fiction.
  • Don't Like, Don't Read: A warning that people who don't like certain topics, pairings and so on shouldn't read the fic.
  • Doppelgänger Crossover: Fanfiction crossing over two works featuring the same actor in different roles.
  • Drabble: A very short fic, usually said to be around 100 words.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: A villainous character is portrayed in a more sympathetic light.
  • Dramatic Reading: A recording of a written work being read dramatically.
  • Elsewhere Fic: A fanfic which focuses on Original Characters rather than the canon cast.
  • Everyone Is Gay: When everyone in a Fanfic is gay, even the originally straight characters.
  • Exotic Equipment: A non-human character's sex organs have features which human sex organs don't have.
  • External Retcon: A work based on a historical or fictional event that claims to be telling the "real" story.
  • Fan-Created Offspring: An OC who is descended from one or more canon characters.
  • Fandom-Specific Plot: For some reason, fan fiction loves using those particular plots.
  • Fanfic Fuel: Unexplained details in a work that tend to inspire fan fiction.
  • Fanfic Magnet: A minor character inspires a ton of fanwork.
  • Fan Verse: A fanfiction writer does several fics for the same fandom taking place in the same continuity as each other.
  • Fan Wank: A fan theory designed to explain plot holes.
  • Fanwork Ban: A creator bans fanfiction and/or fanart based on their works.
  • Featureless Plane of Disembodied Dialogue: Dialogue with no indication of what the characters are doing besides talking to each other. Often has few (if any) dialogue tags.
  • Film Fic: A fan fiction that retells the events of a movie with characters from a different work playing the roles of the characters in the original film.
  • Fix Fic: A fic that retells the story, but with aspects of canon that the author dislikes changed or removed.
  • "Five Things" Fic: A fan-fiction involving six (or more) similar scenarios, where the final scenario deviates from the others.
  • Flash Forward Fic: A fan-fiction that takes place a significant amount of time after the canon.
  • The Four Loves: Different forms of love that can be used in fanfiction.
  • "Freaky Friday" Flip: Two characters, often an adult and a child/teenager, swap bodies.
  • Fuku Fic: A crossover fic between Ranma ½ and Sailor Moon.
  • Fusion Fic: A Crossover where the characters in Work A replace the characters in Work B.
  • Gender Flip: A character who is male in canon is rewritten as a female, or vice versa.
  • Gratuitous Japanese: A fic contains random bits of Japanese.
  • Groundhog Peggy Sue: A character is forced to live some past event over and over.
  • Hanahaki Disease: A terminal disease where someone vomits flowers because of unrequited love.
  • Hate Fic: The opposite of a fan fiction, where the story is written by someone who hates the original work for the purpose of making every character in the work suffer.
  • Het: Romance between characters of opposite genders.
  • Het Is Ew: Boys kissing girls? Disgusting!
  • High School A.U.: An AU fanfic in which the characters are high school students.
  • Hurt/Comfort Fic: A character who has been hurt, physically or emotionally, is comforted by another character.
  • Hypothetical Casting: Someone involved in a fictional project makes a list of actors who would best represent a cast of fictional characters.
  • I Do Not Own: Putting a disclaimer on fan works saying that you don't own the original work, characters, etc.
  • IKEA Erotica: Sex scenes written as "Insert tab A into slot B".
  • Intercontinuity Crossover: A crossover between two works that are not set in the same universe.
  • Interpretative Character: As long as they keep a few defining traits, a character can be adapted in many different ways.
  • Intimate Psychotherapy: Sex cures psychological problems.
  • Jargon Debate: The dilemma of exactly how much jargon to put into a fic.
  • Kid Fic: A fan-fiction where characters start a family.
  • Kink Meme: A fanfic featuring a pairing and a kink.
  • "Let's Watch Our Show" Plot: The characters riff and react to episodes of the source material, usually with their comments spliced into a transcript of said work.
  • Magical Girl AU: Rewriting the characters as Magical Girls.
  • Marriage of Convenience: The couple have been thrown together into a marriage or partnership, bringing them together and immediately into a romantic environment.
  • Marty Stu: A male Mary Sue.
  • Mary Sue: An idealised Original Character who outclasses the canon characters, often to the point of stealing the spotlight.
  • Mary Sue Classic: The classic embodiment of a Mary Sue—beautiful, can do no wrong, the object of everyone's affection, and probably able to fix every problem.
  • Mary-Sue Hunter: A character who hunts down Mary Sues in other fanfics to get rid of them.
  • Massive Multiplayer Crossover: A crossover between more than two works (often many works).
  • Mate or Die: A character needs to procreate/have sex, or they will die.
  • Meta Fic: Self-referential fanfiction with No Fourth Wall.
  • Mindlink Mates: Lovers are so close they can literally read each other's thoughts.
  • Mr. Seahorse (MPreg): A male character gets pregnant.
  • Modern AU Fic: Fics set in a contemporary (and often mundane) setting.
  • Most Fanfic Writers Are Fans: Most of the time, if an author creates a fanfiction for a work, it's because they really, truly are fans of it. Thus, they are very knowledgeable about the original work's plot and setting.
  • Most Fanfic Writers Are Girls: If a work brings up fanfiction, it'll most likely fall into the romance genre, and the author(s) will be a girl.
  • MST: A riffing of another fic, which takes the form of snarky comments inserted into the original text.
  • Murderers Are Rapists: A criminal rapes their victim before killing them.
  • No Punctuation Period: A fanfiction with no punctuation.
  • Obligatory Swearing: A fanfiction that features profanity to be more adult.
  • Obvious Crossover Method: A story has an obvious method through which crossovers can occur.
  • O.C. Stand-in: A character who gets little to no development in canon is fleshed out in fanfiction.
  • Oh Crap, There Are Fanfics of Us!: Characters react to the fanbase's work.
  • Old Shame: A old work which the creator has come to dislike.
  • Original Character (OC): A character created for a fanwork who does not appear in canon.
  • Original Flavour: It aims to hew as close to the style and tone of the original work as possible.
  • Original Generation: A crossover between lots of different works, with a new character as the main protagonist.
  • Outdated by Canon: Fan fiction that doesn't age well due to having ideas that are rendered obsolete by what eventually becomes canon.
  • Out of Character (OOC): A character behaves in a way which is inconsistent with how they are portrayed in canon.
  • Overtook the Series: The original source material stopped being produced, so the work carries on as a Fan Fic with new, sometimes Original Flavour material.
  • Patchwork Fic: A fan fiction based on a specific franchise that uses elements from multiple continuities.
  • Patchwork Kids: Kids that have the combined physical features of their parents.
  • Peggy Sue: Character finds themselves back in time with the chance to change history.
  • Period Fic: A fanfic in which the characters are transplanted to a different historical period from canon.
  • Plot Bunny: A story idea that gnaws at your brain until you write it.
  • Porn Without Plot: A fic which is entirely focused on sex and has little, if anything, in the way of plot.
  • Possession Sue: A canonical character-turned-Author Avatar.
  • Prompt Fic: Fic, or collection of fics, written in response to a list of words and/or phrases designed to act as inspiration for aspiring writers.
  • Pseudocanonical Fic: A fan fiction that is written in a way that it theoretically could be considered canon to the work it is derived from.
  • Purple Prose: The use of over-elaborate language.
  • Rage Fic: A fic that is made solely to make fun of a character and the fandom in general.
  • Rape as Backstory: The explanation for a character's current state is that they were raped in the past.
  • Rational Fic: A fan fiction that has the characters think more rationally than they did in the source material.
  • Real-Person Fic: A fanfic featuring real people.
  • Recurring Fanon Character: An Original Character becomes so popular within the fanbase as to be widely used in fanworks by people other than their creator.
  • Recursive Fanfiction: A fanfic based on a fanfic.
  • Redemption Equals Sex: A good guy redeems a bad guy (usually the good one is female and the bad one is male but sometimes not) and then sleeps with them.
  • Related Differently in the Adaptation: Some fics change up how characters are related to each other.
  • Revenge Fic: A fan fiction written solely to make a disliked character suffer.
  • Role Swap AU: A retelling of an existing work where two or more characters have swapped roles.
  • Ron the Death Eater: The fic portrays a nice character as being a worse person than they are in canon.
  • Rouge Angles of Satin: A spelling mistake results in a whole different word.
  • Round Robin: A collaborative fic written by a group of authors whom take turns writing a chapter or section.
  • Rule 34: Sexually explicit fan works.
  • Rule 50: Crossovers are inevitable for every franchise.
  • Rule 63: A fic that uses Gender Flipped versions of the characters.
  • Sailor Earth: An OC that is created to fit in with the group of canon characters.
  • Self-Insert Fic: The author inserts himself or herself into the fic.
  • Series Fic: A series of fanfics.
  • Slash Fic: Two characters of the same gender are paired up romantically regardless of their sexuality in canon.
  • Soulmate AU Fic: A fan-fiction that involves soulmates meeting each other.
  • The Stations of the Canon: A fanfic revisits a series of iconic canon events.
  • Sudden Game Interface: Character's life is turned into a RPG-Mechanics Verse and they have become a Fourth-Wall Observer.
  • Suetiful All Along: When it at first seems that a character has avoided being a Mary Sue, only to become or revealed to be one later.
  • Super Fic: The characters are re-imagined as superheroes.
  • Ten Ways to Rewrite a Show: Rewriting a series into a fanfiction.
  • The Theorem of Narrow Interests: By narrowing your fanfiction search to certain interests, the harder it will be to find one that's good.
  • There Is Only One Bed: Two people who are not together must share a bed as there is only one available.
  • Transplanted Character Fic: Taking famous characters, altering their roles, and using them in an original story.
  • Troll Fic: Fanfiction designed to be deliberately offensive.
  • Universal-Adaptor Cast: Putting famous characters in an alternate setting while still having them play themselves.
  • Vegas Crossover: Two or more characters from different sources getting married while drunk in Las Vegas.
  • Virtual Soundtrack: Song cues embedded in a fanfic simulate a real soundtrack.
  • W.A.F.F. (Warm And Fuzzy Feeling): A fan-fiction designed to be cute.
  • Wanton Cruelty to the Common Comma: The misuse of punctuation marks.
  • Web Serial Novel
  • Wimpification: Taking a character that's canonically tough and weakening them to the point of a featherweight.
  • Xenafication: Taking a character that's a Non-Action Guy (often The Chick) and leveling them up

Alternative Title(s): Fanfic Trope

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