The Fansplaining Fic Preferences Survey Questions

These are the questions for the Fansplaining Fic Preferences Survey. Anything in black actually appeared in the survey. Comments in red italics are  explanatory.

This is a survey by the “Fansplaining” podcast about readers’ preferences in fanfiction. Any fan who reads fanfic is welcome to fill out this survey! It is anonymous to the best of our abilities. Please only fill it out once, and please be warned: some of the tropes we ask about are often considered offensive (e.g. incest, slavery, etc.).

We know that everyone has complex feelings about tropes—and that you can like something in one fandom but not another, or from one specific author but not generally. But for the sake of workable data, we’ve limited possible responses. Just pick what fits best—if you generally like a trope, pick “yay,” if not, “nay” or “meh.”

For the sake of simplicity, we’ve combined some tropes or themes—for example, lumping all historical AUs under one header—to avoid endless lists of variations. Just do your best to decide whether you like these groups of tropes or not.

Just for background

Do you read… (check all that apply)

This question was followed by checkboxes:

M/M

M/F

F/F

Ships with nonbinary characters

Poly ships

Gen (no intimate relationships foregrounded)

Do you currently read fic on… (check all that apply)

This question was followed by checkboxes:

Archive Of Our Own

Wattpad

LiveJournal

Fanfiction.net

Dreamwidth

Tumblr

Asianfanfics

DeviantART

Fandom- or ship-specific archives

Other

Tone

What do you think about...

This question was followed by a grid of radio buttons: “Yay!” “Nay!” “Meh.” and “I don’t know what this means.” Respondents had to select an answer for every question:

Angst

Crack

Darkfic (aka grimdark)

Fluff

PWP

Parody

Relationship to Canon

What do you think about...

This question was followed by a grid of radio buttons: “Yay!” “Nay!” “Meh.” and “I don’t know what this means.” Respondents had to select an answer for every question:

Virtual seasons

Episode tags

Missing scenes or fill-in fic

Fix-it fic

Futurefic (incl. next generation stories)

Pastfic (incl. backstory explanations)

Crossovers or fusion fics

Point of view shift

Minor character focus

Canon-divergent alternate universes

Worldbuilding

Character studies

Meticulous canon compliance

Formats

What do you think about…

This question was followed by a grid of radio buttons: “Yay!” “Nay!” “Meh.” and “I don’t know what this means.” Respondents had to select an answer for every question:

Imagines

Texting fic

Epistolary fic

Social media fic (excluding texting and epistolary)

Multi-media (e.g. illustrated fic, fic with soundtracks)

Transmedia (i.e. story told over different platforms)
Drabbles

Rigid format (e.g. “221B”)

5 Things fic

Metatextuality

Alternate Universes

What do you think about...

This question was followed by a grid of radio buttons: “Yay!” “Nay!” “Meh.” and “I don’t know what this means.” Respondents had to select an answer for every question:

Magical AUs (incl. Hogwarts AUs)

Non-Magical AUs (i.e. canonically magical characters do not have magic)

All-Human AUs (i.e. canonically non-human characters are human)

Omegaverse (aka A/B/O)

Coffeeshop AUs

Retail & Service Industry AUs (not incl. coffeeshop but incl. bookshop, yarn shop, etc.)

High School AUs

College AUs

Present-Day AUs (for fandoms with a historical or future setting)

Historical AUs (e.g. Regency, Victorian, World War 2, etc)

Rentboy/Prostitute/Escort AUs

Spy/Secret Agent/Assassin/Hitman AUs

Apocalyptic/Post-Apocalyptic AUs

Soulbond AUs (e.g. a magical tattoo appears when one meets their soulmate)

Sports AUs

Band/Pop Group AUs

Royal AUs

Daemon AUs

Office AUs

Noir/Crime AUs

Space AUs

Hollywood AUs/Pornstar/Reality TV/Modeling AUs

Jaeger Pilots (Pacific Rim fusion)

Zombie AUs

Fairytale/Folklore/Mythology AUs

Character Transformations

What do you think about…

This question was followed by a grid of radio buttons: “Yay!” “Nay!” “Meh.” and “I don’t know what this means.” Respondents had to select an answer for every question:

Wingfic

Centaurification

De-aging

Aging Up

Bodyswapping

Bodysharing

Genderbending

Ghosts

Were-creatures

Vampires

Merpeople

Veelas/Sirens

Relationships & Sex

(Note: we struggled to define the line between “trope” and “kink” here. We’re open to feedback about making those distinctions—opinions certainly differ on the subject!)

What do you think about…

This question was followed by a grid of radio buttons: “Yay!” “Nay!” “Meh.” and “I don’t know what this means.” Respondents had to select an answer for every question:

Curtainfic (Domesticity)

Didn’t Know They Were Dating

Everyone Knows They’re In Love

Fake Relationship (including Married for a Case and Marriage of Convenience)

Accidentally Married (including Woke Up Married)

Forced Marriage

Hard Gen

Found Family

Friends to Lovers

Enemies or Rivals to Lovers

Sex Magic

Virginity

First Time

Underage (incl. Chan, Shota, and Lolicon)

Dubcon

Noncon

Slavery (as an AU or otherwise)

Incest

Interspecies

Hatesex

Mpreg

Pregnancy (in general)

Kidfic

Secret Siblings

Pining

Mutual Pining

Unresolved Sexual Tension

Self/Self (character sexes another version of themself)

One Night Stand

Group Sex/Orgies (not implying long-term relationships)

Love Triangles

Slow Burn

Fated Love in Every Universe

Accidental Pregnancy

Established Relationship

Situations (sexual or otherwise)

What do you think about…

This question was followed by a grid of radio buttons: “Yay!” “Nay!” “Meh.” and “I don’t know what this means.” Respondents had to select an answer for every question:

Relationship Bets and Gambles

Sex Compulsion (incl. Aliens Made Them Do It, Fuck or Die, Pon Farr, Sex Pollen, and characters going into heat)

Bed Sharing (aka One Hotel Room Left)

Isolated or Trapped (e.g. in a cave, in an elevator, on a desert island, in a Canadian shack, etc.)

Huddling for Warmth

Veritaserum (or other truth potions)

Intoxication (incl. drunk confessions)

Love Potions

Telepathy

Bonded Together Physically (e.g. hands are magically stuck together)

Road Trips

Groundhog Day (i.e. time loops)

Temporary Animal Transformation

Rescue Missions/Saving Each Other

Magical / Technological Mishaps

Cinderella Moment / Unexpected Makeover

Lessons (e.g. dancing lessons, skiing lessons, etc.)

Other Elements

What do you think about…

This question was followed by a grid of radio buttons: “Yay!” “Nay!” “Meh.” and “I don’t know what this means.” Respondents had to select an answer for every question:

Casefic

Reincarnation

Time Travel

Amnesia

Doppelgängers or Evil Twins

Anthropomorfic

Major Character Death

Presumed Dead

Chromatic Recasting (i.e. racebending—NOT whitewashing)

Hurt/Comfort

Whump

Woobification

Outsider POV

Redemption

Corruption (the opposite of Redemption)

Alternate Universe Hopping (as in Doctor Who)

Holiday fics

Matchmaking

Meet the Family

Teamwork

Competence Kink

Eating Disorders

Bullying

Discrimination (e.g. homophobia, racism)

Miscommunication

Anything else…?

(We may read these responses on Fansplaining or republish them on our social media. If you do not want us to do this, please make it clear in the body of your response.)

Did we miss any tropes you love or hate?

This question was answered in “long response” format.

Comments? Questions?

This question was answered in “long response” format.