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Fanworks & Derivative Works

I learned about some ridiculous DRAMA! recently over the “stealing” of ideas in fanfic and my partner in crime, [info]juno_magic, has written up a “fanworks license” for her works. Since I’ve had people ask about creating derivative works of my fanfics, I’d also like to clarify my stance on the issue by shamelessly plagiarizing borrowing Juno’s text to apply to my own works (with some modifications).

My feeling is that if I’m going to borrow stuff from DC Comics and JRR Tolkien, I sure as hell have no moral standing to get uptight if someone is inspired to use my works. In fact, I consider it a fantabulous compliment and it makes me squee! So if you are ever inspired to use one of my original settings (e.g. my Alternate Universes/Elseworlds or the specifics of a particular fanfic) or any of my Original Characters, please feel free to do so! You do not even have to ask my permission (though I would love to know if you are creating a derivative work of my stuff, because I would love to see it!). I just ask for a credit and a linky back to the original, along the lines of:

[Fanwork/Fanfic/Fanart/Remix/etc] based on ‘[Title of original fanwork]’ by Aranel Took. (Or, ‘[character name]’ based on an original character from ‘[Title of original fanwork]’ by Aranel Took.) Used by permission. The original work can be found at [link to original work].

This does not apply to general ideas, such as “the GLC as pirates”. No matter what the more insane segments of fandom would like to believe, using the same general idea as someone else is NOT plagiarism and does not require any sort of permission or credit, unless you borrow specific elements of another fic (such as original characters or unique plot points, dialogue or scenes). If you write a story with the GLC as pirates, you only have to give me credit if you’ve actually borrowed unique elements of my Pirate!GLs fics.

I am also quite happy to help out with a derivative work (such as if you’re wanting to stay “in canon” in a particular AU) — please don’t hesitate to email/PM me about anything! And if I don’t reply, email me again with a reminder, because I’m a doofus with an aging brain who forgets what she read in her emails ten minutes ago. 😉

2 comments

1 Juno { 09.17.09 at 3:07 pm }

Excellent point concerning the “theft” of plot and ideas. I want to shout it from the roofs, seriously.

2 Aranel { 09.17.09 at 3:29 pm }

Especially when you consider that, by their criteria, Tolkien and Shakespeare are dirty plagiarists! *snerk*

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