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Unformatted text preview: Molly McClure English 130 Dr. Shaun Hughes May 15, 2006 “Get a Life!” Misconceptions about the Tolkien Fan Fiction Culture Fan fiction is a genre whose writers use existing stories, characters, plots, themes, and scenes as the starting point for extensions or retellings of the original. Fan fiction writers fill in gaps in the original story, track characters past the boundaries of the original work, or even create entirely new versions of stories. The modern genre has its origins in retellings and reworkings of science fiction and fantasy story lines, but today fan fiction encompasses creative responses to television series, movies, comic books, and books in many subgenres. Recently, a large body of fan fiction has grown up around J. R. R. Tolkien’s T he Lor d of the Rings series, partly due to the popularity of the recent movies. While some authors ridicule the efforts of fan fiction writers, often as a smokescreen for protecting their copyright interests, to say that fan fiction writers have overactive imaginations and too much time on their hands is to say the same about J. R. R. Tolkien himself. 1 Tolkien spent years of his life dreaming up every little detail about Middle Earth, including genealogies, maps, and languages; fan fiction writers borrow and expand on his inventions with creative and sometimes critical elaborations. In method, but not degree, perhaps their efforts are not so different from Tolkien’s. Tolkien based his work on existing sources, great works of mythology and Anglo-Saxon literature such as Beo wulf , as Christopher Tolkien (the author’s son) has shown in T he Histor y of The Lord 432 19 | C I T I N G S O U R C E S I N M L A S T Y L E Molly McClure’s essay presents an argument using research from outside sources to build the case for correcting misperceptions about fan fiction, a wildly popular form of writing on the Internet. The title is an allusion to a famous Saturday Night Live skit in which William Shatner spoke to Star Trek fans at a convention and told them to “get a life.” 19e MLA Sample Paper McClure 1 The first paragraph provides some useful background information for understanding the basis of the ar- gument, such as the definition of fan fiction. This raised (superscript) number indicates that a note related to the sentence can be found at the end of the paper, after the main text and before the Works Cited page. This general reference to an entire work includes the author’s name and the title of the work, but not page numbers, which if included would indicate a more specific use of source material. Note, too, that the title of this work includes another book’s title.The title within the title is not underlined or italicized. of the Rings. To say that fan fiction is a passing fad would also be a mistake because its roots go back thousands of years, long before Tolkien inspired so many new authors. To say that fan fiction is not serious is to slight those who do take it seriously and to ignore that fan fiction may be one of the most popular...
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This note was uploaded on 09/29/2010 for the course NCC 2323 taught by Professor Me during the Spring '10 term at Northampton Community College.
- Spring '10