RarelyWritten, formerly known as Rarewomen, is now an annual spring fanfic exchange that features all your obscure favorites of rarely represented genders in all media fandoms.
(Open, Moderated, Gift Exchange Challenge)
About Rarely Written Fanfic Exchange 2015 (Rarelywritten2015)
Timeline for 2015 Exchange
Now: discuss potential nominations @ this post
January 30-February 7 11:59PM CST: nominations @ AO3, promotion @ your journal/twitter/tumblr
February 8-February 14 11:59PM CST: nominations clean up
February 15-March 1 11:59PM CST: sign ups @ AO3
Early to mid-March: assignments out @ AO3/your email
April 18 @ 9PM CST: drops/defaults after this time subject to banning in 2016
April 25 @ 9PM CST: stories due @ AO3
May 3 @ 6PM CST (pending no issues): stories and authors go live @ AO3, share and link your and other's work @ your journal/twitter/tumblr
Q: Who can participate? A: Anyone with an AO3 account. You are not obliged to sign-up or create a story if you participate in the nomination process. You may request an expedited AO3 account here.
Q: What characters can be nominated? A: To be eligible for inclusion in rarelywritten, a character must meet hit count requirements and underrepresented and/or marginalized gender or sex requirements.
Hit Count Requirements: If a character generates FEWER than 500 hits on AO3 and FEWER than 200 hits on fanfiction.net for complete fic, then they meet this requirement. If hits fall 5-10 over the maximum, we will err on the side of caution and allow the character.
EXCEPTIONS: It is on the nominator to provide proof that a character has been tagged extraneously in a majority of the fanfiction they are included in, but in these cases a high hit count nominee may still be eligible.
Examples of eligible characters:
For a Good Time, Call… (2012) has zero fics on AO3 and fanfiction.net. Any underrepresented and/or marginalized gender or sex character from that movie is automatically eligible.
There are less than 500 total hits for Brooklyn Nine-Nine (TV) as a fandom, so any underrepresented and/or marginalized gender or sex character from that show is automatically eligible.
X-Men (Comics) and X-Men Movieverse are both very large fandoms, but both combined produce less than 300 fics tagged with Jubilation Lee | Jubilee.
Talia Hale, from Teen Wolf (TV) is tagged in over 1,000 fics on AO3, but is featured in less than half, making her eligible.
Examples of NON-eligible characters:
Hermione Granger, from Harry Potter, is way over hit count in both book- and movie-verse.
Underrepresented and/or Marginalized Gender or Sex Requirements: As previously stated, the list of underrepresented and/or marginalized genders or sexes includes but is not limited to: cis women, transgender women, transsexual women, genderqueer individuals, intersex individuals, gender fluid, a-gender, two-spirit, bigender, pangender, third gender, transgender men, transsexual men. The character must self-identify or be identified in canon as a member of an underrepresented and/or marginalized gender or sex. Eligibility of a character is based on canonical gender/gender expression ONLY. If your character has self-identified as a gender that you are not sure is eligible, please ask and we will be happy to amend the list or clarify for you. One quick question you can ask yourself in regards to eligibility is "would this character feel comfortable being included in an exchange for underrepresented and/or marginalized genders or sexes?"
NOT underrepresented and/or marginalized genders or sexes:
NOTE: Inclusion of a character and requests should also not hinge on headcanon gender. Headcanons are important, but as we have no way to match based on specific labels, your request should not rely on them.
Examples of eligible characters:
Xavin, from Runaways (Comics), whose native culture has a fluid-presenting gender, and whose culture does not attach societal meaning to any gender presentation. Xavin, in human form, has presented as both male and female, and has expressed a desire to be referred to with she/her pronouns.
The Machine, from Person of Interest (TV), who is an artificial intelligence. The Machine has been referred to with it and she/her pronouns.
Sophia Burset, from Orange is the New Black (TV), a transgender woman.
Nathan Seymour, from タイガー＆バニー Taigā Ando Banī |Tiger & Bunny, an explicitly [corrected 1/17, per WoG] agender character presenting as female and using he/him pronouns.
LaFontaine, from Carmilla (Webseries), who has identified as genderqueer in canon and uses they/them pronouns.
Kino, from Kino no Tabi -the Beautiful World- | Kino's Journey, a person who takes on the name and gender of an influential guy in their life and uses he/him pronouns.
Morgan Finn, from Strange Empire (TV), who presents himself as male but who exists in a time before modern-day transgender labels and uses he/him pronouns.
Tony Sawicki, from Orphan Black (TV), who is a transgender man. Tony's transgender identification makes him eligible here because there is a lack of transgender persons in fic.
Princess Deokman, from Seondeok Yeowang | Queen Seondeok, is a cis-female (who lives as a man for several years).
Examples of NON-eligible characters:
Always Female! Sam Winchester, from an AU of Supernatural, but by any/all canon is a cis-male
Malcom Reynolds, from Firefly, who by any/all canon is a cis-male, but who once dressed in women's clothing
Will Graham, from Hannibal, who by any/all canon is a cis-male, but whom I headcanon as transgender
Steve Rogers, from any incarnation of Captain America, who by any/all canon is a cis-male
Q: What happens in nomination discussion? A: This post is where you (and mods!) can hash numbers and answer clarification questions about eligibility. You may also advertise characters or open nomination spots.
Q: How do nominations themselves work? A: Anyone with an AO3 account will be able to reach the nomination form once it is live. You may nominate up to five fandoms and up to five characters per fandom. You may edit your nomination until it is approved, but it may be approved almost immediately, so plan ahead!
Q: Is there a special format nominations should be in? A: Yes! Please use the following format when nominating: Fandom: [conventional AO3 fandom tag, if it exists*], Characters: Full Name (fandom shorthand)
*if a fandom does not already exist in the archive, please follow archive convention. Examples: Title of Show (TV), Title of Movie (2014 Movie), Original Language Title | English Title (Manga), Author - Title of Book. If you have a question about how to list a particular fandom, please ask.
Characters may be nominated under more than one fandom if they canonically appear in that fandom. Mega-fandoms such as MCU or comics should be nominated in the way that the nominator would like to request/write/read them.
Fandom: Runaways (comics), Characters: Gertrude Yorkes (Runaways), Karolina Dean (Runaways)
Fandom: Marvel 616, Characters: Gertrude Yorkes (Marvel 616), Karolina Dean (Marvel 616)
Specific fandom will designate where characters appear on the sign-up forms. So, in the example above, if you would like to write Gert and Karolina only within Runaways canon, nominate the first way. If you would prefer the greater Marvel comicsverse, use the second.
Another set of examples:
Fandom: MCU, Characters: Natasha Romanoff (MCU)
Fandom: Black Widow (Comics), Characters: Natasha Romanoff (Comics)
In this example, Natasha is rendered ineligible for MCU due to hit count. However, solely tied to comics, she is good to go. Natasha could also be nominated under Marvel 616.
And another set of examples:
Fandom: Game of Thrones (TV), Characters: Sansa Stark (Game of Thrones), Messandei (Game of Thrones), Shae (Game of Thrones)
Fandom: George R. R. Martin - A Song of Ice and Fire, Characters: Sansa Stark (ASOIAF), Messandei (ASOIAF), Shae (ASOIAF)
Since the fandoms in the above examples share some details but end up differing considerably, the characters can be nominated and eligible under either title. An author may be familiar with one or the other and can feel safe offering only one version of a character.
If you have a specific fandom labeling question, please ask! Please refrain from using the All Media Types addendum for fandom.
Q: Am I allowed to participate this year? A: If you answer "yes" to any of the following questions (without special permission from a mod prior to defaulting) you are NOT permitted to participate in RW 2015. Please stick around and consider joining us in 2016. If you don't know the answer to these questions, you are welcome to ask!
During RW 2014, did you no-show default?
During RW 2014, did you default after the deadline?
During RW 2014, did you default on a pinch hit?
Q: How do sign-ups work? A: Anyone with an AO3 account will be able to access the sign-up form once it exists. Here is a step-by-step guide to requesting and offering through the AO3 form (though please note that cis-female centric language is not a reflection of the current exchange). If you don't already have an account, again, please ask for one. In sign-ups, you will include both a request and an offer.
Choose three to six fandoms and "Any" or one to ten characters per fandom from the nomination set
Include details you would like to see and/or a link to an author's letter
Choose three to ten fandoms and "Any" or one to twenty characters per fandom from the nomination set
Please err on the side of requesting and offering as MANY characters as you feel comfortable with, as options make matching easier. Matching is also done via OR match rather than AND, and therefore listing many characters opens you up to more potential matches.
Q: What happens after that? A:
You receive your assignment, which will match you with someone based on at LEAST one character.
You write a story of at least 1,000 words focused on at least one of the characters they requested. You are only obligated to fill one of your recipient's requests. It does not have to be the one you matched on, if you like and can write something else they've requested that you didn't offer. Optional details are optional, but you are obligated to try and avoid any triggers they note.
Q: What kind of stories can I request? A: While remembering that aside from at least one match on one character, optional details are optional (but encouraged), you may request gen, femslash, het, poly, incest, RPF… you name it. You can note that you'd like to see your rarely written character paired with a non-rare character, as long as the requested character is the center and focus of the request and resulting fic. While background cis-men, male narratives, and slash are not forbidden by any means, we encourage requests and fic to focus as much as possible on the requested rarely written character. The character's marginalized gender or sex does not need to be the focus of your story.
Q: What happens if I can't write my story? A: If you need to drop out, do so before the penalty date. On your AO3 assignments page, there is a handy button to push that will alert us that an assignment has been dropped. If you need to receive a new assignment because (AND ONLY BECAUSE) the one you received was generated in error, please contact us as soon as possible. If the penalty date has passed and you still need to drop out, continue to use the AO3 drop function. If you have a medical/personal emergency, let us know about it and you won't be banned for 2016.
Q: What are things I shouldn't do, things that will get me banned in 2016? A: The following will leave you on the ban list for 2016:
default after deadline (without medical/personal excuse)
offer to write a pinch hit and then default on it
The following will result in a series of actions: First you will be informed that the behavior or wording is inappropriate and allowed a week to make any changes. If no change has been made, you will be removed from participation after that week. You will also land on the ban list for 2016. Mods cannot read every request or every dear author letter, so if you encounter these behaviors, please contact us. Your name will not be used when contacting the individual. We take the safety of participants seriously and will not tolerate the following:
bashing of a character in request or dear author letter (stating like or dislike is fine, but "X is the stupidest character to ever exist and if I receive a story about them I will be pissed off!" is not)
use of gendered slurs or deliberate mis-gendering in reference to a character in request or dear author letter (with the exception of a direct quote from source material)
disregarding formal request in written optional details or dear author letter
by asking for a story focused on cis-male characters
by asking for a story focused on cis-male/cis-male slash
by expressing a preference for only one of several characters formally requested
* write a story of at least 1,000 words (1k words) based on at least one rarely written character listed in the generated assignment. It does not have to be one that you matched on, just one that was requested. If you prefer to write something you did not offer that was requested by your recipient, you may do so.
* in the event that the user CANNOT complete a story, they must:
~~ in case of dropping out, use the AO3 function
~~ in case of an assignment that was generated in error, contact the mods as SOON AS POSSIBLE
~~ in the case of seeking an extension, contact the mods as SOON AS THE NEED IS SENSED