February 15th was the sixth annual International Fanworks Day, and in (belated) honour of the occasion here is an A-Z of some of my all time favourite fanworks. I'm using the Archive of our Own's content rating system which runs the gamut from family friendly 'G' to not safe for work 'E'.
A is for... Agatha Christie
Poirot Comes Clean by Jade56 [ 3600 words | rated T | 2017] I mean, you could argue that the TV show isn't just one long chronicling of Poirot's pash for Hastings but you would be wrong. Obviously. This is the sweetest little love confession fic, and I always imagine it being set some time around Suchet!ABC Murders, when Poirot is so thrilled to have Hastings home he's even happy to have Cedric the caiman stinking out the apartment. They're at peak domesticity there.
B is for... Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Divided by Jackson [? words | rated E | 2001] Okay so this is actually three fics, Divided in which Toth's stick splits Spike into his demon and human halves - the latter of whom falls big time for Xander - and its sequels Two's Company and Male Bonding in which Spike stops fighting it and puts his energies into convincing Xander he's not really such a terrible guy.
I first read this when I was about 14 and, omg, it set me up for everything I've looked for in fic ever since. Spander in general, really, because the Big Bad falling to pieces over the Regular Joe is what I'm all about.
C is for... Breakfast Club
Higher Education by Resonant [14,000 words | rated E | 2005] Growing up and getting a clue fic with John Bender and Brian Johnson. It gets recced all over the place, I know, but only because it really is that deserving.
D is for... Detroit: Become Human
It's not even out yet but I'm gonna go with Detroit Evolution, a feature length fan film by Michelle Iannantuono of Octopunk Media. Fan films are nothing new, sure, but what is essentially a live action Reed900 slash fanfic is definitely something to write home about. Based on the soppy gazes they're giving each other in the trailer, I like to think my own effort to be the change I wanted to see in terms of prevailing fanon paid off in some small way.
E is for... Edit
I have a huge soft spot for recut trailers and Scary Mary is still the original and best.
F is for... Sweet F.A.
Or, how am I the only person to want this? Even Yuletide hasn't provided for some of the stuff I'd love to read fic about. Like dusty old silent movies with forever unresolved plot points and short lived modern procedurals. The one thing I'm always looking for recs of is Superman/Jimmy Olsen. You'd think it would practically write itself...
G is for... The Limehouse Golem
Gas-Lamps Gleam in a Golden Line by merle_p [4000 words | rated M | 2020] I only saw the film recently and even as the credits were rolling I was already looking for fic to give me a happier ending. This is the perfect epilogue, building on Kildare and Flood's relationship.
H is for... Sherlock Holmes
Hidden Depths by Susannah Shepherd [7,000 words | rated E | 2002] "Watson inadvertently lets slip that his war injuries are far more extensive and crippling than he has formerly admitted. Holmes encourages him to confront his fears and find new hope." Nearly 20 years later and my heart still hasn't got over this one.
I is for... Inspector Morse
The whole franchise is a treasure trove of fic but I'll rec for Lewis as it is the crowned prince of the 'undercover as a couple' trope, like Bait! by Wendymr [23,000 words | rated T | 2014] which has the pair playing pretend to catch the bad guy - at least until it isn't pretend anymore.
J is for... Jeeves & Wooster
Jeeves and the Literary Gifts by triedunture [13,000 words | rated T | 2010] "Jeeves gets his mitts on some Victorian fiction of a rummy sort and it is SO good he must find the author. Now who do you suppose that might be?" Lots and lots of lovely pining and Wodehousian prose.
K is for... Kiss
As in all the ones Disney refuse to allow. Still, Poe and Finn are just about the only thing I liked about the new Star Wars movies, even if fandom does have to pick up the slack for TPTB. Check out the super cute little six page fancomic Finn's Shirt by Stitchy.
L is for... Life on Mars
Previous Convictions by Elfbert [70,000 words | rated E | 2009] "It's 1948 and 19 year old PC Gene Hunt is trying his best to impress... but when the criminal he's trying to catch turns out to be a wayward teenager he takes pity on him. The decision has repercussions he could never have imagined - for both himself and the youngster."
This prequel to the show follows Ray's transformation from street thief to Detective Sergeant - and his falling for a certain floppy haired young plod, into the bargain - finishing just where the actual series picks up. I first read it while it was still being posted in instalments, over on Livejournal, and have never quite escaped its vice like grip on my heart!
M is for... M*A*S*H
Radar's First Time by Scribe [100,000 words | rated E | 2005] Scribe (RIP) was a gift to multifannish readers everywhere, writing amazing fic for any and everything. This one in particular is a first person pov crossover between M*A*S*H and The Manchurian Candidate which should be every bit as terrible as that description sounds. Needless to say it isn't - in Scribe's hands the crazy just becomes the only interpretation of canon which can possibly make sense.
N is for... Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
Letters From the Northern Continent by thehoyden [8,000 words | rated M | 2010] "It just figured that the first time Julian Bashir set foot on Cardassia after the war, it would be halfway around the world from Elim Garak." Basically, Julian finally - finally - catches a clue after years of Garak flirting with him over lunches at the Replimat.
O is for... Star Trek: The Original Series
And the reboot, I guess. Hold Hands and Play Nice by BirdyMarie and Kedreeva [110,000 words | rated E | 2016] is fake dating to avoid the wrath of weird aliens at its very finest.
P is for... The Professionals
Arcadia by Sineala [90,000 words | rated E | 2012] In which Bodie has been keeping a secret about his maritime experiences. When he and Doyle are sent undercover to catch a spy on a cruise ship his past finally catches up with him. There are really no words for how much I love this fic. I've read it over a dozen times and I'm sure I'll go on to read it over a dozen more. It has action, mystery, romance, and all the glorious pining angst you could ask for.
Q is for... Quantum Mechanics
I.e. the favoured hobby of geeks in a universe robbed of Star Trek by virtue of living it. It was also the science behind Star Fleet's teleporters, the operation of which aboard the USS Enterprise-D was the job of Miles O'Brien. Chief O'Brien at Work by Jon Adams is an ongoing comic "for fans of crappy jobs, space travel, and ennui." It'll make you laugh until you cry.
R is for... Recs
AKA the zillions of other curated rec lists out there! For a starting point, check out Epic Recs, Crack Van, Fanfiction Recommendations, and the weekly multifandom newsletter The Rec Center.
S is for... Southland
Son is on a Midnight Run Like DeNiro or We're All Just Train Wrecks Waiting for the Crash by hackthis [38,000 words | rated E | 2009] Picks up immediately following the season one finale and takes the obvious Ben/John tension where the show wouldn't. It's so perfectly done, it really feels more canon than canon itself.
T is for... The Yellow Wallpaper
The Yellow Wallpaper is a creepy short story by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, exploring mental breakdown back in 1892. The Yellow Wallpaper (the spinning jennie remix) by lunabee34 [1700 words | rated G | 2016] takes the premise that the supernatural aspects are very much actually happening and runs with it.
Awesome art by award winning illustrator Abigail Larson.
U is for... Unicorns
Central Intelligence was the kind of movie where you can switch your brain off and just have a good time - and I really don't mean that to sound like a bad thing! Everything Is Better With Unicorns by misura [2400 words | rated T | 2016] is a pitch perfect - and snort out loud funny - epilogue wherein Bob embarks on (continues?) his grand seduction of Calvin.
V is for... [Fan]Vid
One Foot In Front Of The Other by ORiley42 [4:18 mins | rated G | 2018] One of my all time favourite songs and one of my all time favourite ships - Harvey Bullock/Jim Gordon from Gotham. This vid just encapsulates everything that made me love them. ♥️
W is for... What We Do In The Shadows
The Plan by Rivine [2,000 words | rated T | 2019] "Nandor decides to do something about other vampires wanting to eat Guillermo. It goes wrong." Each and every character voice in this is beyond perfect, it's just like watching the show.
X is for... MX-43
Okay, I admit it, I was struggling to find a suitable entry for X but Almost Human really is an awesome sci-fi show that deserved to be on our screens so much longer. As far as I'm concerned Det. Paul and his MX-43 are the original Det. Reed and RK900. Anyway, check out Pokémon, Beyoncé and a Cute Christmas Sweater by sosioban [130,000 words | rated T | 2014] for some zany robot hijinks.
Y is for... Yuletide
Yuletide is an annual fanfic exchange for tiny fandoms - outside of giving in and just writing it yourself it's the only way you're ever going to see fic for a lot of them. Like Are We In Love Yet by Misura [2400 words | rated M | 2017], a fic for the gone-too-soon C4 comedy The Aliens in which Dominic finally wears Lewis down...
Z is for... Zines
Before the net fandom was at the mercy of the zine. Or photocopied pages from someone else's copy, I'm not judging. These days you can find lots of vintage zines online, including The Price and The Prize, a 100+ page Kirk/Spock anthology originally published in 1981 and deemed so shocking by UK customs that most copies were seized as soon as they entered the country on grounds of breaching the Obscene Publications Act. Personally I find vintage zines fascinating to see how fandom has - and hasn't! - changed over the years.
For more fandom stuff, please click the image below: