We’ve had a few comments from people who say they’re not in fandom, but they wish they were. Well, we want to get you guys involved! There’s really nothing to it, but to help you out, here are our tips:
- Watch, read, or listen to things that get you excited. You can’t really be a fan if you’ve got nothing to be a fan of.
- Done that? Great. Now go onto a search engine and look up that thing you’re a fan of. Scroll down until you find a forum or a fanfiction.
- Alternatively, you could search for the name of the show/book/whatever on Tumblr (land of fannish squee) or a fanfiction site (don’t know any? Search engine: ‘fanfiction’)
- Have a look around, get acquainted with what’s going on in the fandom. Pay attention to spoiler tags, trigger warnings, and age ratings – they’re there to protect you. Be clear on what you’re prepared to read or see, and be warned that not everything is tagged appropriately.
- Keep an open mind; there will be contentious issues in the fandom – do we trust Snape, who should have custody of Henry Mills, what on earth happened on the roof of St Bart’s – don’t get involved in them right off the bat if you can help it. Take some time to read what other people are saying before making up your own mind. That said, you’re there to have an opinion! Just be respectful of the feelings of others as you explain your own.
- Had a look around? Got the lie of the land? Like the atmosphere? Great. Start talking to people! Tell someone their picture of Optimus Prime is amazing, or ask someone what they feel their favourite character’s motivation was in a particular scene. Keep our Web Safety tips in mind, though, and don’t give out your personal information to strangers.
- If you want to go one step further, start creating yourself! Apply for a character at a roleplaying forum, post a piece of fanart, write some fanfiction. It doesn’t have to be deeply serious, and don’t worry if it’s not immediately popular. As long as you enjoy it, it serves it’s purpose.
- Keep chatting to people – different people, the same people, it doesn’t matter. Make friends! They’ll be the ones who’re there to hold your hand when the next series finale comes around.
- Look out for events in your area – screenings, meetups, tea parties, flash mobs… all sorts of things happen in the real world as well as online. You don’t have to get involved if you don’t want to, but you may as well know what’s there.
- Been busy? Missed out on a huge chunk of your canon and had to take yourself away from the fandom to avoid spoilers while you caught up? Just not been able to get online for a bit? Don’t worry! Dive back in as soon as you can.
Eleanor Musgrove (got into fandom by accident, it can’t be that difficult)