Following a Fad
The terrible side of fad following -- in terms of writing -- has been very well represented on Wattpad with not just One Direction fans and their overwhelmingly numerous fan fic band stories, but with other bands, other movies, other books, and more. Cheesy romances seem to be the most prevalent in fads, but you may read some syfy music tours or intriguing yet sappy life-lesson type chick flicks, or even some horror stories, or vampire or werewolf cross-overs. Fads are sloppy things: everyone involved usually makes the big mess bigger, but only the best avhieve any kind of reviews or stats, or revenue depending on legalities and agreements. This applies to any fad that comes along: there will always be writers who like to tag along on the coattails of something that is / was popular.
When everyone is excited about reading or writing the current fad, suddenly there are more and more stories with, yes, you guessed it, "A new twist!" The horrid thing about that? Suddenly you have so many ugly, mutated versions of the same characters that all of them begin to overlap and sound the same. It's kind of like...imbreeding, you know? Ew.
Take the old One Direction fad, for example.
It doesn't matter how many ways you write a One Direction fan fic, it's still the same: a boy band whose multiple sets of pants girls everywhere want to jump in. (More or less, that's the most poplular theme with fads, as I said.)
Often, you begin to see stories that not only depict the same thing a million ways, but you begin finding versions of them that morally rape otherwise innocent persons. Didn't you know you can only drink piss so many times in the desert before there's nothing left but highly concentrated salt and toxins? You can only drink piss so many times before it gets redundant and you die of dehydration / poisoning anyway. It is very hard on the kidneys, man.
Also, as a writer who should be developing your skillset and experimenting with new things in order to find and create the next new fad, you begin to dull your ability to write original pieces by creating these fan fictions. You might get so lost in stargazing with that little "I wanna meet / be / have sex with them!" fantasy that you could forget to map out the damned system and write an actual story with substance and originality! By writing fan fiction, you're using rules that are already created rather than making your own (and fictionally breaking some serious laws and moral boundaries sometimes), and you are no longer really challenging yourself to create your own characters or worlds. By writing fan fics, you're beginning to use a crutch with pre-created characters. A paint-by-numbers, if you will.
So please, writers, do not use an already overused palate whose colors are so mixed you're using dukey browns and moldy, vomit inducing grey-greens! Create the fad, don't follow one! Publishers won't even take something that so obviously copies something. They want the unique, and to avoid legalities and bad PR.
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