A statistical look at The Force Awakens’ fan fiction


Remember when a respected publication wrote about The Force Awakens fanfic? Well, here’s an intriguing follow-up of sorts: Tumblr user DestinationToast on the Archive of Our Own stats for the fandom.

Archive of Our Own (aka AO3) is arguably the most important fan fiction archive for general fandom. This isn’t a complete picture of Star Wars fan fiction, as Star Wars has always been a bit of an outlier to overall fandom trends, but The Force Awakens is the first major Star Wars film to come out since AO3 launched in 2008. Toast does look briefly at the numbers for old standby Fanfiction.Net (FFN,) plus relative newcomers Tumblr and Wattpad.

Another major outlet for Star Wars fic is TheForce.Net’s Jedi Council boards, but no doubt the message board format makes these sort of things much harder to track. I do hope that authors on the JC have gotten better about double-posting their works to FFN or AO3… A lot of fics were all but lost when TFN migrated their boards to a new system several years back, causing posts of length (aka mostly fanfic) to be truncated beyond readability.

2 Replies to “A statistical look at The Force Awakens’ fan fiction”

  1. AO3? Really? They’re smaller than FF and a much bigger gamble on whether or not anything’s readable. I would guess that a big reason “Supernatural” is higher than Star Wars is because a lot of them are crossovers and Supernatural seems to get crossed over with everything. Plus a good 85% or better of AO3 is really bad smutfic (you want to scare yourself, there is a ‘chainsaw hands’ and ‘organ play’ tag in SPN fandom, and no, it doesn’t mean organ the musical instrument or a euphemism for the male organ, do NOT ask. I have gotta stop reading Supernatural fic.) I think it’s more telling that since TFA came out, Star Wars, which had settled a bit, leapfrogged back to the top of the movie category on FF. And Kylo is absolutely the most popular. Also seeing a huge uptick in Anakin fics. Kylo/Hux on AO3, Reylo on FF….

    And seriously. There are entire fandoms that have fewer fics about them than Millicent the Cat.

    1. Dude, it’s fan fiction. EVERYTHING is a gamble.

      But FFN is also something like a decade older, and easier to find for newbies. Of course it’s bigger. But let’s not pretend it has a great reputation (remember ‘the Pit of Voles’?), or even that they do more than pay lip service to not hosting smut at this point.

      Honestly, the most shocking thing for me in that whole post is that SPN is the top fandom. That? Really? (I would have guessed MCU at this point.) Sigh. Though from what I’ve heard, chainsaws and organ play are fairly tame for them.

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