Lets face it: comic book fans have never been completely honest with each other. Weve all had that time when were on a message board or just yakking away at the comic book store and someone will mention something. Maybe its a book they hate or a creator they despise, and the rest of us will nod along in agreement. And in the back of your head, youre thinking, actually, I kind of like that. Even though comic book movies and superheroes in particular are hotter than ever right now, most of us grew up in a time when reading comics was something you kept to yourself. It was a marginalized hobby and going down to the comic book store sometimes made you feel like a politician visiting a brothel. So its no surprise that when those in this very small group found a point of agreement, we tended to go along with it. But in reality, many comic fans probably have secret truths that they wouldnt confess to their brethren. These are the things you probably wouldnt discuss at the local shop for fear that you may be ostracized even further. And theres no casting of stones here. Were guilty of many of these things, too...
13. You Write Fanfiction
What You Say: Is there anything worse than fanfiction? Its written by arrogant fans who think they know better than the creators about how to write these characters, when really most of the fanfic authors couldnt write their way out of a paper bag. The Enterprise falling through a wormhole and ending up in the world of Conan? Buffy discovering that Slayers are really mutants and enrolling at Xaviers? And thats not even getting into all the terrible slash-fic. What kind of pervert gets their rocks off by reading prose stories about imaginary characters banging? But What You Really Mean: If everyone who insulted fanfic really felt that way about it, then there wouldnt be so much of it out there on the Internet. And although you may sneer at it in public, chances are youve probably got a secret Fanfiction.net account, and its highly likely that youve used that account to either publish your own stories or to read and comment on other stories. True, theres a lot of awful fanfic out there that would make high school English teachers contemplate ritual suicide, but theres also good stuff out there and many published authors have said they wrote fanfic in the past. And yes, chances are youve also dipped into some of the more*ahem* exotic realms of fanfiction on a few lonely nights.
Percival Constantine is the author of several novels and short stories, including the Vanguard superhero series, and regularly writes and comments on movies, comics, and other pop culture. More information can be found at his website, PercivalConstantine.com