fandom glossary

Fandom jargon it’s a language on its own so don’t worry if you are a bit lost.  Here you can find the meaning behind fandom slang. Welcome to the ultimate fandom glossary.


ANON: Means Anonymus usually used to refer to someone who hides their identity in online interactions.

AO3: Archive of our own is the biggest fanfiction archive at the moment. 

AU: Alternative universe. It marks that a work it’s settled in a different universe than the canon work. It’s usually preceded by the type of universe the story takes place. For example; Student!AU.

BNF: Big name fan. A fan that it’s famous within a fandom.

BURY YOUR GAYS: It the trope where gay characters are more likely to die in a story than their heterosexual counterparts. 

CANON: It’s what is officially considered as part of the universe a story builts. In fandom, it refers to the original fiction that fanworks take inspiration from. 

CON: Means conventions as in big meetups for fans. Cons are mainly focused on a particular fandom such as comics, anime, etc.

COSPLAY: Creating a costume based on a fictional character. 

CRACK: A fanfic that is incredibly absurd for the sake of being so. 

CROSSOVER: It happens when elements of two or more fandoms are combined in a fanwork. 

DRABBLE: It’s a way to refer to fanfics that are 1oo word long. Some authors define a drabble as any short fic usually bellow 1000 words. 

FANDOM:The fans of a certain media (TV shows, books, films, comics, etc) as a group. 

FANGIRL: Someone who is obsessed with fandoms and shipping. Fandoms are usually composed mostly by girls hence the term fangirl. 

FANART: Art (visual media such as drawing, photo edits, etc.) created by fans. 

FANFICTION:  Written stories created by fans. 

FANON:  As opposed to CANON,  fanon is a widely accepted theory created by fans.  

FANSERVICE: Scenes that are there to please the audience.

FAN STUDIES: Is a field of scholarly research focused on media fans and fan cultures.

FANVIDS: Videos created by fans. 

FEMSLASH: It’s a subgenre of slash that focus on romantic or sexual relationships between women.

FF.NET:, a fanfic archive that was popular during the 2000s.

FLUFF: A subgenre of fanfiction for fics that are cute and happy content. 

GEN: A fanfic that doesn’t contain sexual situations or sometimes no romantic relationships altogether. 

HET: Heterosexual. 

HEAD-CANON:  A canon that is created by a fan. The way a fan think things work in canon but it’s not confirmed in the original fiction. It’s not the same as FANON since the later is accepted by a considerable amount of fans and head-canons tend to be an individual phenomenon. 

HURT/COMFORT: A fanfiction genre that involves a part of a couple going through some sort of pain for the other half of the couple to comfort them.

IRL: In real life. The opposite of your online life.

LJ: LiveJournal

LONGFIC: A long fanfiction with multiple chapters and often a complex plot.

MARY SUE: It’s a degradation term to describe a character (usually an original character inserted in a fanfiction) that has no flaws. These type of characters are too perfect hence badly written. 

MCU: Marvel Cinematic Universe.

NOTP: A ship a fan hates. 

NSFW: Not Safe For Work, like it says on the tin works that are not suitable to see at work because they contain explicit content.

OC: Original character. A character that doesn’t appear in canon. 

ONE-SHOT: Fanfic that is composed of one chapter. 

OOC: Out Of Character. When a character behaviour varies greatly for the one portrayed in canon.

OT3: One true threesome. The same as an OTP but for a polyamorous relationship.

OTP id=”otp”: One true pairing. The ship (couple) that you love the most. Fans usually have one OTP for each fandom.

PODFIC: An audio version of a fanfic.

POST-CANON: Fanfics that tells what happens after canon ended. 

PWP: Porn Without Plot. It’s pretty self-explanatory; a story with little to no plot but lots of explicit content. 

POV: The point of view the fic is told from.

QUEERBAIT: A marketing tool where showrunner hint that two-character could be in a homosexual relationship to keep viewers engaged in the story but they never deliver.

QUEER CODING: Giving a character stereotypical queer characteristics without stating that they are queer. 

RPF:  Real Person Fic. A type of fic written about real people such an actor, singers, YouTubers, etc. RPF is often frowned upon but they gained popularity over the last years.

SHIP: It comes from the word “relationship” and as an action means imagining two o more character in a romantic relationship. As a noun, it means a particular couple, for example, Johnlock.

SLASH: It’s a genre of fanfics that revolved around gay relationships. 

SMUT: A fanfic that contains sexual content. 

SONGFIC: A fanfic that is based around a song. This kind of fics often features song lyrics in between paragraphs.

TRIGGER WARNING: A warning  about the content of a text, video, etc. that might be upsetting or offensive to some people, especially to those who have previously experienced a related trauma.

WIP: Work in progress. A fanfic that is still being written. 

YAOI: The Japanese term for  slash (stories about gay relationships) but for anime and manga,