Fan and Non Fanfiction -Meaning and components

Fan and Non Fanfiction -Meaning and components

What is a Fan Fiction?

The Oxford Dictionary defines fan fiction as a form of fiction written by a fan of and featuring characters from a particular film, TV series and so on. In other words, fan fiction can be defined as the remake, alteration or extension of a popular and previously written piece. The term ‘piece’ in this context could refer to all forms of fiction ie. Short stories, novels, novelettes, TV series, movies and so on.


A fan fiction ought to consist of the following characteristics:

  • It involves the adaption, alteration or remake of a popular and/or previously written work.
  • It is written by a fan of the original or initial piece.
  • The author makes use of the characters, setting as well as other intellectual properties of the original author.
  • It is often written on websites, hence, it is rarely professionally published.
  • In addendum to the previously stated point, it is often written and distributed between and among fans.


A fan fiction consists of the following elements or components:

  • Theme
  • Plot.
  • Setting.
  • Characters
  • Conflict.
  • Climax.
  • Resolution/Denouncement.


A theme can be defined as the central topic or subject matter of a creative piece or writing. In other words, a theme can be defined as that particular subject matter or point that the writer intends to or portrays in his/her written piece. Themes are inherent attributes in virtually all types of writing whether fictional or non-fictional. Hence, one can also assert that a theme is inherent in fan fiction as well, it could be portrayed in either one or both of the following means:

  • The central theme or subject matter of the fan fiction could be exactly the same theme as that of the originally published piece.
  • Similarly, it could be slightly or completely altered from that of the originally published work.
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A plot can be defined as the sequential arrangement of a series of events which will occur in a creative or written piece. In other words, the events or happenings which will take place in the creative piece can be grouped under and regarded as a plot. A plot in a fan fiction could be depicted in either one or both of the following means.

  • It could be an extension of the plot in the originally published work. This could occur in situations whereby the writer of the fan fiction feels like denouncement in the original piece was too sudden or did not sit right with him/her.
  • It could be an entirely different plot from that of the original piece. However, the idea or inspiration for the new plot was stated at one point or another in the originally published work or piece.


A setting can be defined as the geographical location in which a written or creative piece tends to occur. Oftentimes, the geographical location which writers use in a story tends to be real-life places or locations. In rare and remarkable situations, however, these locations could be created solely and completely by the writer of the piece. The setting in fan fiction could occur in either one or both of the following means:

  • It could be exactly the same setting as that in the original work or piece.
  • It could be an entirely different setting from that in the originally published work.


Characters are fictitious individuals created, introduced and used in a fictional piece or writing. Characters in a written or creative work can be of different types and means however, they can be broadly sub-divided into three namely(1)The Protagonist (2)The Antagonist (3)Other subsidiary characters. Characterization in fan fiction could occur in the following means:

  • The alteration of both the protagonist and antagonist in the originally published piece.
  • An extension of the adventures of the original protagonist with the introduction of other subsidiary characters and an antagonist.
  • The introduction of completely new characters all round. However, the inspiration to create these new character must be adapted from the original piece. For example, the protagonist in the fan fiction could be the son/daughter of the protagonist in the original piece and so on.
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A conflict can be defined as the area(s) of discord or unrest which will occur or start to build up between characters in a story or written piece.In other words, a conflict can be defined as that point in a story where misunderstandings, disharmony or disagreements begin to occur between its characters. In order to provide or produce a top notch and candid story, conflicts ought to occur at different intervals in a creative piece. Often times, the conflicts in a fan fiction are entirely different from that of the originally published piece or work.


A climax can be defined as the highest point of a conflict in a written or creative piece. In other words, a climax can be regarded as that point in a story where the tension or conflict between opposing parties has reached its maximum or boiling point. Similarly, it can also be referred to as the turning point of the protagonist in every story or written piece.

A climax is twice as important as a conflict in every story, this is so because it contributes to the growth of the protagonist in the story and it makes the story seem more realistic and less predictive. However, a climax can not appear or occur in a story without conflict. The climax in a fan fiction often differs from that in the original piece.


Britannica defines the term ‘Denouncement’ as the conclusion after the climax of a narrative in which the complexities of the plot are unraveled and the conflict is finally resolved. In other words, a denouncement can be regarded s that point in the story whereby the actions of either the protagonist or antagonist are unveiled and explained and the conflict in the story is finally resolved. Oftentimes, the aim of fan fiction is to portray the original idea through different means or to remodel it entirely. Hence, the resolution or denouncement in fan fiction is always different from that of the original story.

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The Oxford dictionary defines a non-fiction as prose writing that is informative or factual rather than fictional. In other words, a non-fiction can be defined as a form of writing which involves the adaptation of real-life events and happenings rather than the use of one’s imagination. Examples of a non-fiction include an autobiography and a biography. The characteristics of a non-fiction include the following:

  • It involves real-life incidents and/ or happening as well as real individuals or people.
  • The story must be true or must have occurred at one point in time or another.
  • It is more informative than entertaining, unlike a fictitious story which could be both or more entertaining.


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