Geeking Out About Flame Con Panels: Subversive Fanfic

Whether it was the press of bodies in an overflowing room or the panel's detailed description of "Omega Verse" (Google it. Not at work. And you're welcome.), this panel was HOT. Here's the gist of the panel:

-Fan fiction, like all acts of creation, is an exercise in generating and reflecting the cultural meaning of our modern mythologies.

-As we grow and mature, fan fiction provides a safe space to learn about, experiment with, and accept our sexuality, social identities, and tastes.

-Fanfic predicts future canon by making it. Those who cut their teeth on yuri go on to write purposefully, canonically lesbian-coded Ghostbusters.

-Even though it represents a safe space, there are teeth in the fanfic community. Fanfic can be thrown at someone, like Graham Norton bombing Benedict Cumberbatch with guerrilla readings, or it can be an act of geek celebration, like Cecil Baldwin's ah-MAZING reading at the Flame Con 2 opening ceremonies.

-While fan fiction is one of the few places where Veggie Tales and tentacles are discussed in the same breath, the open access nature of the medium means its creators bring all sorts of biases and phobias. Reading page after page of transphobic m-preg stories can make you feel like there is no fanfic that tells your story. If that happens, speak up and ask the fanfic community for recommendations. This panel's awesome attendees did just that, and the panel immediately offered links to their favorite transphilic fics.

-All of that is why Flame Con is the fanfic of geek culture: it is a celebration of the vibrant margins of geekdom, sewn up into a raucous community.

Fanning yourselves over fan fiction yet? Want to contribute to the con-versation? Let us know your recollections and reactions in the comments! I want your "Um... Actually" like I also want cake!

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