So. I’ve been gone all day today, and I came home to a bunch of super sweet messages from people who read my Four Months fics the past couple of days. There are some words I wrote about this under the cut.
Thank you. All of you. The people who read my stuff, and reblog my stuff, and like my stuff, and take the time to send comments. Thank you, very sincerely, from the bottom of my heart. I’ve noticed that a lot of people in the past week or so have been writing these sort of posts in which they thank Glee for changing their lives in some way, or talk about how great the fandom has been, or what they learnt the past year and change in this fandom. The thing is, I don’t have one of those stories. I knew who I was, I have a girlfriend, I didn’t see something in Santana or Brittany that I’d been afraid of accepting in myself. That’s not to say I don’t identify with certain characteristics or elements of the storyline, because why else would I be here, right? But I didn’t have the same formative experience as other members of this fandom. But I think that’s okay. We all respond to things in different ways. We all have individual experiences. Just because I didn’t have that hurt locker moment along with Santana doesn’t mean I don’t have anything.
The thing I do have, as you may have gathered, is my fic. Before I got involved with this fandom I had tiptoed around in other fandoms writing little bits of stuff, not with any degree of skill but just because I still had that stupid childish ‘I wanna write stuff’ dream floating in the back of my head, that had kind of existed in some form or other since the first time I got lost in a really good book as a kid and forgot to come out again when the other kids wanted to go play outside at recess.
I’m quiet, and dorky, and shy, and words and books help me make connections I can’t always make in other situations because my brain doesn’t always work the way it’s supposed to for whatever reason. And the thing is until now I’ve always written in a vacuum, maybe showing stuff to my girlfriend (although mostly not) and hiding it in the back of a drawer somewhere, or on a folder on my computer. I think I was supposed to stay in the vacuum, because really the point of those childish dreams is you put them away with the toys you had as a kid and grow up.
Until fandom dragged me out of the vacuum.
It wasn’t always good when I started, and sometimes I look back at those fics I wrote a year ago and think how awful they are or what I’d do differently, or whatever, but people left comments. People said they liked what I did. People had feelings, and made connections, and it started to feel pretty good being out of the vacuum.
Look, I hold no illusions about great artistic skill, or there being some kind of merit to what I do. I write fanfiction about characters that I care about infinitely more than the show ever will, and I do it to plug gaps and fix flaws and because it helps me work things through and make sense of the things I see on my tv every week. That said, I think I’ve gotten better at it over the last year, and that’s partly because of an engagement with fandom, the wonderful writers I’ve met and read, the friends I’ve made, who make me want to be better and inspire me all at the same time.
The point of this, the part where I started, was thank you. I talked earlier about making connections, and coming home to find people in my ask commenting on my fic. The thing they all said was that this fic made them cry, and I know we talk about creys a lot in this fandom, and that we’re a pretty hysterical bunch, but even if only half of them were true—fuck, if only one of them were true—it means that in something I wrote I made a connection, which is all I have ever wanted since I was that kid who wouldn’t put the book down to go play outside. And that is worth everything in the world to me.
The one thing that this year gave me, besides a kind of confidence in my basic writing level that I have never really been aware of having for any other skill, is the feeling that something I did had the same kind of resonances somewhere, for someone, that things I have read had for me. It makes me think that maybe I can write that novel, or maybe this isn’t just me shouting into a vacuum and scribbling stupid things that don’t make sense to anyone but me. I think I learnt how to communicate better. I think I learnt how to write better. I think I learnt how to just be better, on a much more general level than I can really express.
I don’t really know the point of this, or where it’s going, but I had to try and write something to explain why every single comment I ever get means the world to me, only if it’s just a fucking smiley face and nothing else. Everyone else is saying thank you, and being a better person, and on some level this is really insignificant compared to all of that and the kind of stories you find from people in this fandom, but.
I like words and I write words and I connect through words.
Thank you for connecting to mine.
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