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16 May 2009 @ 11:09 pm
Discussion Topic: Songfic  
This week at work I've been thinking about this a lot, and I really want to know what you all think of this. I would love for this to be an open discussion (but please don't bash me for, oh, liking songfics, or my concept of what a songfic is).

1. What do you consider a songfic to be?

Wikipedia defines songfic as: "A songfic, also known as a song fic or a song-fic, is a work of fiction interspersed with the lyrics of a particular song." This would be on par, simplistically speaking, with my fic A Birthday Wish, or the more elaborately executed Concrete Angel, a NCIS fic by triskellion.

Myself, I define songfic as a piece of fanfiction that uses a song's lyrics as the storyline (e.g. my fic Lips of an Angel or Bittersweet Symphony) or as simple inspiration for the fic (e.g. Can't Cry Hard Enough and They Said a Hundred Times I Should Have Died).

Feel free to link to examples--I'm not just pimping my work out, here. Since I've written them, it's easier for me to use them for reference.

2. Do you like songfics, as you define them?

Yes, I love a well-executed songfic. Sadly, a lot of teeny-boppers use the format of a songfic and it falls very flat. But when it works, it just works, to me.

3. Have you ever written a songfic, or would you be horrified at yourself for doing so? And, do you read a fic knowing it's a songfic or do you pass it up on principle?

As evidenced earlier, I like using the concept of songfic. I will do so in the future. It doesn't matter to me if something is a songfic, I'll read it if I think I'll be interested. I know, however, that not everyone is of the same mind.

Hmm. Well, there's probably more I could ask, but I can't think of it right now (I'm claiming sleep deprivation, as is my right after the day I've had). Please, I'd really like to know what you all think.
Tabbywhy_me_why_not on May 17th, 2009 03:53 am (UTC)
I actually think of song fics the same way you do. I like them as long as they're done right, but like everything else, they're so easy to do wrong.
Gelseygelsey on May 17th, 2009 09:48 pm (UTC)
Very true, yes.
(Deleted comment)
Gelseygelsey on May 17th, 2009 09:50 pm (UTC)
Hmm. So you find the interruptions annoying. Good to know.
(Deleted comment)
Gelseygelsey on May 17th, 2009 10:06 pm (UTC)
Hmm. Not even if the poetry is original and written by the character during the fic? I did that once here.

Sometimes I like using poetry as inspiration, but I rarely post it in the story itself.
firefly_124firefly124 on May 17th, 2009 04:34 am (UTC)
1. What do you consider a songfic to be?

I tend primarily towards the Wikipedia definition, though I can go with the idea of the songs lyrics forming a story line even if they're not literally interspersed throughout the fic.

I don't usually think of fics that are simply song-inspired as songfics though. Nor fics that simply include references to specific songs. subversa' His Draught of Delicate Poison comes to mind. At least I think that's the one that has "Smooth Operator" as the ladies' choice dance in the ball scene.

2. Do you like songfics, as you define them?

If they're well done, yes. But so, so very many are not, that unfortunately, I probably skip over quite a lot that might actually be good.

3. Have you ever written a songfic, or would you be horrified at yourself for doing so? And, do you read a fic knowing it's a songfic or do you pass it up on principle?

By my definition, just one that was written for a still_grrr challenge specifically asking for songfic. By your rather broader definition, almost all of my multi-chaptered fics are songfics, even though I found the songs from which the titles came and which helped me define their themes after they were at least half-written.
Gelseygelsey on May 17th, 2009 09:52 pm (UTC)
Well, I generally think of them as songfic if you go into a piece intent on using something as inspiration. But after the fact, I guess it's just titling? I dunno.
kribu: kõrkjaskribu on May 17th, 2009 06:15 am (UTC)
I've always defined them the same way Wikipedia does. And I can't think of any in that particular format that I've liked... it seems those are mostly always using songs I am not familiar with and which don't "speak" to me at all. If the rest of the fic is any decent, I'll just skip the lyrics, but in my experience, usually the rest of the fic in such a case tends to be skippable too.

Songfics the way you've described them sound a lot more interesting! I doubt I've had any issues with reading any of that format - and I'm fairly sure I have, although I can't recall any specific examples right now. Even if I don't know the song that provided the inspiration, it doesn't really matter to me as a reader where the inspiration came from as long as the fic is good.

I've not written any in either format and I certainly wouldn't write one by the Wikipedia definition. I can't say with certainty that I'll never be inspired by a song though!
Gelseygelsey on May 17th, 2009 09:56 pm (UTC)
I've read some songfics that are fabulous. Even if I'm not familiar with the song, I find they can be used very effectively.

I'm glad you give my sort a chance, though!
lilian_cho: Aziraphale also worshiped bookslilian_cho on May 23rd, 2009 02:46 am (UTC)
I go by the Wikipedia def. I think most songfic writers go by that def. too.

I would call your def. a "song-inspired fic" ;-)

I don't mind song lyrics titles, or an opening/ending lyrics quote, but I hate song lyrics breaks =/
They're esp. jarring if it's a fic about Lucius Malfoy and you have Avril Lavigne lyrics interspersed throughout. Yeah.

I don't even buy Harry being familiar with Muggle music because he grew up in a cupboard ^^;;
Christmas songs, sure. Eminem? No.