[insert literary reference]

pretend it's witty and sophisticated

50,229 notes &



Julie Dillon - Freelance illustrator living and working in Northern California.

All I can think of are these books we would ‘read’ in kindergarten which just consisted of blank pages with artwork and you’d make the story up yourself. Each of these feel like that—a story waiting to be told.

(via teal-deer)

Filed under art Mermaids

129 notes &

Fandom affixes and crossover names



I’m looking through AO3’s AU tags, and reflecting on the fact that the Sherlock fandom uses -lock to denote a lot of AUs (e.g., merlock, teenlock, femlock).  It appears that the Homestuck fandom uses -stuck similarly (e.g., merstuck, highschoolstuck, or the amazing Marchingstuck & Promstuck).  Are there other fandoms that strongly identify with a given suffix?

How about prefixes?  Based on Potterlock, maybe Potter- is a generative prefix… but if so, how does one signify a cat AU in the Potterverse? Pottercat seems off…

And speaking of Potterlock, what about crossovers?  Does Potter-  generalize to other fandoms?  Is there Potterstuck?  (…yep.)  Are the Super- and Who- in Superwholock productive prefixes with other fandoms?  Is Whostuck a thing? (… yep.) Superwolf? (…yep.)  

Maybe I should instead ask, are there fandoms without a strongly identified suffix or prefix?

Examples of fandoms I don’t know how to combine:

  • Les Miserables + Supernatural (Supermiserables?)
  • Glee and Harry Potter
  • One Direction and anything

Hey, allthingslinguistic — any idea if fandom crossover names work similarly to ship names, in terms of guidelines for what makes a good one?  Do you see any different patterns?

This is definitely an interesting question, and I’d suspect that there would be some similarities (if anyone hasn’t read this article about ship names, you should really do so). 

One thing to note is that Potter is often used in phrases rather than compounds, such as A Very Potter Musical or Potter Puppet Pals. Which means, to take your example, that if I were naming a world in which all the Harry Potter characters are cats, I might call it Kitty Potter (___y Potter seems like a good template here). Perhaps because the names of creative works are more likely to be phrases than character names are, it seems that when you’re combining them, you’re also more likely to end up with a phrase.

The works that combine more like character names do (Sherlock, Homestuck, Supernatural) are also single-word names, but they also combine predictably in a way that character names don’t. To use examples from the ship names paper, Quinn Fabray/Rachel Berry is Faberry, using parts of their last names, but Finn Hudson/Rachel Berry is Finchel, which uses their first names instead. So there isn’t a consistent combining form that always indicates Rachel Berry in a pairing. This is quite different from the consistent combining forms -lock, -stuck and super- (I don’t think you get combinations with sher-, home- or -natural, although do let me know if anyone has any examples). So another analysis might be that these started out as blends like ship names but have now become more like libfixes (non-fannish examples of libfixes include -athon, -pocalypse, and -mageddon). 

I could really use more data to think of further generalizations though. Anyone want to add some more examples of crossover or AU names to see if we can find anything? 

Maybe I should instead ask, are there fandoms without a strongly identified suffix or prefix?

… Yes, the vast majority of them? As far as I can tell, this is a recent phenomenon limited to large Western media fandoms with wide name recognition. Smaller fandoms don’t have them. No Japanese fandom of any size has one, to the best of my knowledge. Even some big Western fandoms, like the aforementioned Glee and Les Mis, don’t have them.

It may spread now that it’s become a thing in such popular fandoms, but my feeling is that it doesn’t work so well for some titles; it seems like most of the titles that turn into affixes are polysyllabic and one or two words; titles that are either monosyllabic (like Glee) or three or more words long might be harder to pare down and still keep recognizable. And titles that aren’t in English (like Les Miserables) might not flow so well either. I could be wrong, though.

Filed under fandom linguistics