When you read fanfiction, you often stumble upon words that the general population might not understand. We have therfore compiled the more common once and “translated” them for you!
Canon:The “official” information on which the story is buildt. Like the Harry Potter books, Final Fantasy games and movies and so on. It can also consist on any information given by the author or creator, in interviews, blogs etc.

Fanon: The opposite of canon. Invented facts or situations. Some situations or events are used so frequently in fan fiction, they’ve become seen by many as an extended part of the canon, becoming a form of group in the fandom as often many writers and fans adopt the same fanon, within a relatively short time frame. Like how almost every HP-fan agrees that Neville and Luna are meant to be.

RPF: Real Person Fiction. When you take a real person, dead or not, and write fanfiction about him/her/them. Like, when you read weird slash about the members of japanese popbands. SARA! That’s RPS (Real Person Slash) though. Or RLS(Real Life Slash) if you’d like.

One-Shot: A story with only one chapter.

Songfic: Where the writer take the lyrics of a song, and incorportes it into a fic. Some sites don’t approve of this, since it’s not entirely the author’s original work that’s posted. But they can be quite good, espacially the angsty ones.

Drabble: Very short one-shot. Traditionally, it’s supposed to be exactly 100 words. But in the world of fanfiction, it can mean pretty much anything that’s short.

AU: Alternate Universe. The story deviates from canon. Killing of a major character, having someone change alligence or putting the characters in another time are some examples of these stories. Also referred to as AR, Alternate Reality.

Angst: Anxiety and sorrow. Sad stories packed with character deaths, heartbroken lovers or simply depressed people. Not for the faint hearted. Always be well stocked in the tissue departement if you read angst. Usually quite well written. Beginners normally don’t do angst, they stay closer to the fluff or Mary-Sue region of the fandom.

Fluff: The opposite of angst. Mostly consist of romantic stories, or friendship. These always end happily. Also known as WAFF, which stands for “Warm And Fuzzy Feelings”, ie “feel good” stories.

Slash: Two of the same sex with a romantic interest, such as Harry/Draco. Mostly reffered to two male characters. The female version is femslash. The name arises from the use of the slash symbol (/) in the description of the primary pairing involved in the story.

Yaoi: Same as slash. Mostly used in fandoms concerning Japan, but nowadays popping up elsewhere too.

Yuri: See yaoi and exchange slash for femslash.

Lemon: Sexual content. Milder version is called Lime.

Seme: The “dominant” in a relationship. Used mostly in Yaoi (se above). Means “attacker”.

Uke: The not “dominant” in a relationship, i.e. the opposite of seme. Means “receiver”.

Ship: Short for relationship. To “ship” something means that you support a relationship, like Harry/Ginny. The different ships usually have individual names, like drarry (Draco/Harry), snarry (Snape/Harry), Argolas (Aragorn/Legolas) or Harmony (Harry/Hermione). That ship has sunk though…

OTP: One True Pairing. Some people are just meant to be. Like Toma and Yamapi (or so Sara tells me!). I vote for NevillexLuna myself. 🙂

Mary-Sue: Mary-Sues are widely known throughout the fanfiction world. The author puts themselves into the story, mostly as a romantic interst for one of the characters. Mary-Sues are usually written by new writers, a good percentage of them female, who find it amusing to make a sexy character fall in love with them through a story. The male version is a Guy-Stu.

Another definition of a Mary-Sue, is a super-mega-awesome-character. That has like, no faults whatsoever. And if she has, it’s only so that the male character can find them adorable. Think Harlequin-heroine. By this definition, you could call Edward a Guy-Stu. But I love him, so I don’t. And, because I’ve had this discussion a thousand times before; Ginny is not a Mary-Sue. Harry is in love with her, so he therefore idolizes her, making her perfect. And since he is the narrator, this is the only side we see of her. I guess you could use the same arguments in Edward’s case.

PWP: Porn Without Plot, or more generally, Plot What Plot? No real story, just an excuse to write porn. Used frequently in the slash part of the fandom.May also be reffered to as Smut. Warnings for graphic sex.

OC: Original Character, ie someone from the authors own imagination. OFC is short for Original Female Character. Don’t know why you need to be so specific, might be a synonym to Mary-Sue. But it’s there, so I thought I’d add it^^

OOC: Out Of Character. If someone acts in a way that is not normal for them, true fans would call it OOC. Like if Voldie all of a sudden fell in love with Hermione. There is a slight difference between AU and OOC. My definition is that it’s AU if a character made a different decision than they do in the actual canon. Like in Harry Potter, if Harry had chosen to become friends with Draco. Then it wouldn’t be OOC for him to hang around with Death Eaters. But if you stick with the canon version, then Harry being pals with people like Greyback (or worse, more than friends, if you know what I mean. These stories actually exist!) is very OOC. That’s how I see it.

POV: Point of View. The story is told through this persons eyes. Twilight is in Bella’s POV and Harry Potter from Harry’s.

RR: Read and Review. The author wants some feedback on his/her work. Reviews makes authors very happe! Unless you totally bash their fic. Then they get sad.

WIP: Work in Progress. This story is not yet finished.

Crossover: If the story consists of element from two or more fandoms. Like all those stories about Harry being the son of Aragorn and Legolas. Which brings us to the next word.

MPreg: A male character gets pregnant. Used commonly in slash (where else?).

Blood Play: Quite self exploratory. Often found in warnings on Adultfanfiction,net and the Restricted Section. Common in slash (how suprising!), and stories featuring vampires of course!

AH: All Human. Very common in Twilight fanfiction. What would happen if all the characters were human? This is where you find all the wonderful; “Bella is a young collegestudent who finds herself attracted to the biggest player on campus – Edward Cullen.” There are seriously too many of those!

UST: Unresolved Sexual Tension. My new fav word! The first three books in the Twilight-series are filled with this!

OME: Oh My Edward. Used frequently in Author’s Note’s from Twilight-obsessed authors. Such as myself. OMEC (Oh My Edward Cullen) is not as common. Probably due to the fact that you don’t need to mention his last name. There is only one Edward worth mentioning.

DP: Double Penetration. Don’t ask.

LoL: Lot’s of Lube.

Twincest: What it sounds like. Two twins “doing it”. “We’re so alike, it’ll be like masturbating!” Ha!

Ageplay: When there is a big age difference in a pairing. You might call Edward and Bella as Ageplay, since he is 108. But that’s just being technical. An other example is like, Snarry. Can be hot, if it’s not noncon. Then it’s just bad.

Crack!fic: A story that is not meant to be taken seriously. So don’t go flaming the author if it’s OOC, AU or whatnot. It’s not meant to be realistic.



  1. I love the Mary-Sue one…so true!

  2. I mentioned Harry/Greyback just for you Sara!

  3. Wow. I’m new to the whole fanfic world so I was confused for a minute when I started reading gibberish… ^_^ This clears a whole lot up!

  4. I hate accidently writing a mary sue character.
    It drives me bonkers -__-

  5. This was helpful, thanks

  6. You’re very welcome!

  7. […] Terminology […]

  8. What about ofc? alwasy comes up in pairings, Oliver/ofc, Harry/ofc, etc etc, is that an original fictional character..? seems redundant with oc already there, but I dunno… 😛

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