So I wasn’t going to announce this until the first column, which I intend to be a comprehensive introduction to the kind of ethos of it, but! It turned out to be “announcement afternoon” over at the New Statesman.
I’m very, very excited to be given a platform to write about fan stuff regularly, and the editors there are so interested in the topic and supportive of the ideas I’ve sketched out. But I’m also very, very nervous: the media has a very thorny relationship with fandom (I’ve usually been angry, in the latter camp) but I think that’s changing, or it needs to change. There are some journalists doing amazing work covering fan stuff; there are unfortunately still many more who continue to mock and misunderstand.
I wrote this piece yesterday, about “After,” Wattpad, and other commercially-sanctioned spaces for fanfic:
That I think is a good template for what I want to do: so many of the ideas that cross all fandoms are about mainstream culture butting up against practices that were historically hidden for a lot of reasons. I want to write pieces that sort of examine these issues that both fans and non-fans can equally enjoy, maybe engage with? I don’t want to suggest that my personal experiences are universal in any way, though they are where my base understanding comes from.
One thing I realllllly don’t want to do (EVER) is talk about Sherlock, or the Sherlock fandom. I’ve totally LOVED engaging with you guys recently (like no seriously some of my nicest experiences in fandom ever) and hopefully I can keep doing that here, in my personal space. But I don’t have enough distance to say basically anything about Sherlock critically for a British magazine, and I swear some jerk will just be like “Sherlock sux balls” (heh) and I will take it so, so personally like I always do and probably burst into tears. As I did when reading the comments of the press coverage in January. I need to get a little less attached someone teach me how please.
So! If anyone ever wants to chat about any broader fandom issue I would LOOOOOVE that so much, just to bounce ideas around. Definitely hoping to talk about fandom as gendered space, queer counter-narratives, something about YA (anyone else in the UK going to the YALC at London ComicCon in a few weeks?), cult of celebrity/hero worship. Someone stop me before I list all of my ideas. Also maybe I am overthinking/overworrying about this in a kind of narcissistic way and it’ll all be fine! Haha, sorry. I’ll stop now. :-)