Kurt Vonnegut, Breakfast of Champions
Fandom is focus. Fandom is obsession. Fandom is insatiable consumption. Fandom is sitting for hours in front of a TV screen a movie screen a computer screen with a comic book a novel on your lap. Fandom is eyestrain and carpal tunnel syndrome and not enough exercise and staying up way, way past your bedtime.
Fandom is people you don’t tell your mother you’re meeting. Fandom is people in the closet, people out and proud, people in costumes, people in T-shirts with slogans only fifty others would understand. Fandom is a loud dinner conversation scaring the waiter and every table nearby.
Fandom is you in Germany and me in the US and him in Australia and her in Japan. Fandom is a sofabed in New York, a roadtrip to Oxnard, a friend behind a face in London. Fandom talks past timezones and accents and backgrounds. Fandom is conversation. Communication. Contact.
Fandom is drama. Fandom is melodrama. Fandom is high school. Fandom is Snacky’s law and Godwin’s law and Murphy’s law. Fandom is smarter than you. Fandom is stupider than you. Fandom is five arguments over and over and over again. Fandom is the first time you’ve ever had them.
Fandom is female. Fandom is male. Fandom lets female play at being male. Fandom bends gender, straight, gay, prude, promiscuous. Fandom is fantasy. Fandom doesn’t care about norms or taboos or boundaries. Fandom cares too much about norms and taboos and boundaries. Fandom is not real life. Fandom is closer than real life. Fandom knows what you’re really like in the bedroom. Fandom is how you would never, could never be in the bedroom.
Fandom is shipping, never shipping, het, slash, gen, none of the above, more than the above. Fandom is love for characters you didn’t create. Fandom is recreating the characters you didn’t create. Fandom is appropriation, subversion, dissention. Fandom is adoration, extrapolation, imitation. Fandom is dissection, criticism, interpretation. Fandom is changing, experimenting, attempting.
Fandom is creating. Fandom is drawing, painting, vidding: nine seasons in four minutes of love. Fandom is words, language, authoring. Fandom is essays, stories, betas, parodies, filks, zines, usenet posts, blog posts, message board posts, emails, chats, petitions, wank, concrit, feedback, recs. Fandom is writing for the first time since you were twelve. Fandom is finally calling yourself a writer.
Fandom is signal and response. Fandom is a stranger moving you to tears, anger, laughter. Fandom is you moving a stranger to speak.
Fandom is distraction. Fandom is endangering your job, your grades, your relationships, your bank account. Fandom gets no work done. Fandom is too much work. Fandom was/is just a phase. Fandom could never be just a phase. Fandom is where you found a friend, a sister, a kindred spirit. Fandom is where you found a talent, a love, a reason.
Fandom is where you found yourself."
"The soul doesn’t need chicken soup. The soul much prefers a shag and a good cry; preferably not in that order, of course."
Lauren’s thoughts on healing.
When invited to a birthday party whose theme required that the boys dress as superheroes and the girls as princesses, dad Jay C. Batzner came up with an awesome compromise that simultaneously stomped on the face of gender normativity and made his daughter happy. Wonder Woman, both a princess and a superhero, had long been Daria’s favorite hero, so he sewed her this costume. We think this might be one of those steps to raising kickass daughters.
Well I’ve known what it’s going to be about for years but I think I’ve finally settled on an idea that’ll work.
Of course, I’ll probably get about halfway through then decide I hate it and write something completely different. Fuck it, I’m excited.
"To live every day as if it had been stolen from death, that is how I would like to live. To feel the joy of life, as Eve felt the joy of life. To separate oneself from the burden, the angst, the anguish that we all encounter every day. To say I am alive, I am wonderful, I am. I am. That is something to aspire to."
Garth Stein, The Art of Racing in The Rain
Sometimes I forget that I used to be a different person. More importantly, I forget how lucky I am to be in the here and now with people I love and who love me back. Such things are worth more than we give them daily credit for.
Tonight, life provided me with a reminder of these facts and I am finding myself all at once humbled and sad and grateful for what I have: the things I’ve earned and the things I’ve been given, both equally weighted in worth and the time they took to achieve.
An explanation will probably follow tomorrow when my thoughts and feelings have come to terms with each other and my eyelids are less weary, but before I end this let me say one sentimental thing.
To anyone and everyone: you are human, you are paradoxical, you are wonderful. You can be weak in your assurances, you can be strongest at your most vunerable. You are not isolated by anything you feel, or go through, or need. Everyone is connected; everyone is precious to someone.
You are not alone, and you are loved.