The Vocabulary of Fandom: U to Z

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The vocabulary of fandom arrives at its end with letters U to Z. The list of words that start with these letters aren’t many, that’s why I decided to put them together. We find words like universe, virtual season, uke, yaoi, and Yuri. Let’s start our last fannish word list with uke. Say what? Yes, that’s the first word of the list.

Uke: is the submissive character of a yaoi or slash relationship. This is a Japanese word taken from the verb “ukeru,” to receive.

Underage: are stories where one or more of the main characters are underage. For example, the main character is sixteen years old. Many of these stories include romance and even sexual relationships. The minor character can be in love with another minor character or an adult. Although most of the stories are between consenting parties, many are also about rape. Authors must write those in warnings since this can be a squick for many people.

Universe: or “-verse,” “!verse” is the environment and world where the author’s story exists. Many stories can find their environment in the same Universe.

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UST: is an acronym for “unresolved sexual tension.” It happens when there’s unresolved sexual tension between two characters. They might be or not aware of it. This situation is affecting the story. This is not the same as subtext. You have the sexual tension, but it’s only read by fans, and it has no consequences affecting the story.

Vignette: is a simple story that wants to explore a moment or a thought. It can also be a character study, or an exercise to complete the character.

VS: is an acronym for “virtual season.” It’s a continuation of a TV show after the finale in fan fiction. Fans who don’t want their favorite series to end, write stories and continue it releasing an “episode” per week. They can even follow scheduled “air dates” and follow the known canon. This can be the work of many authors.

WAFF: is an acronym for “warm and fuzzy feelings.” You can also find it as “WAFFiness.” These are stories that provoke lots of fuzzy feelings.

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Wank: happens when an online discussion has deteriorated too much and ends up with being very vulgar and people calling each other names. It can happen at any time in any forum. It might be that there’s a troll trying to create discomfort within the community, or it can occur by chance. Many times this happens because of flame, and ship wars.

Wapanese: comes from combining “white” an Japanese. It refers to a white person who imitates Japanese in an exaggerated way. Gwen Stefani is an example of it.

Warning: is the header of a fan fiction that contains a list of possible offensive and spoiler topics. Readers that continue reading the story agree to those terms. Authors have to tell everything in warnings because many trauma survivors can have triggered by reading their stories. The clearer the warnings, the less backlash a story will have. If everything is stated in the warnings, then it’s the reader’s responsibility to acknowledge what they read. Warnings are a courtesy and not an obligation.

Whump: are stories where a favorite character suffers repeatedly. There is no comfort in these stories, just hurt and damage towards the characters. This isn’t angst either since here it’s the author who gives an ordeal to the poor character.

Wingfic: are stories where characters have wings. They can have that in canon, or the author gave them wings. These tend to be humorous stories or even kink porn.

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WIP: is an acronym for “work in progress.” Stories might need months or years to be completed. Authors need time to finish their stories. They do have lives and other things to do besides writing fiction for the readers. That’s why you shouldn’t harass the authors into writing more. It’s rude.

Win the Internet/s: happens when someone does something witty or in a dramatic fashion. No one can win the internet, even if you try hard and do things in a super dramatic way. If you try, you might be told that phrase.

Woobie/ woobified: is a character that inspires great sympathy. They tend to be fluffy, so you want to hug them. They’re usually in pain, and the only thing you want to do is to hug them and give them comfort. Some woobified characters don’t need all the hugs, but they’re still treated as fluffy things.

Worldbuilding: is the fictional universe that the author creates for the story to happen. Many fanfics don’t need worldbuilding because they’re already based in worlds that already exist elsewhere. However, if the author is creating an alternate universe, then they need to do some worldbuilding.

Word of God: are all the things that God says. In this case, God is the fandom owner. TV showrunners, movies, etc., they all have Gods. Whatever they say, it’s canon. Despite this, not all fans accept the “word of God” and might take different things as being the real canon.

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WTF: is an acronym for “what the fuck.” The one who uses this acronym wants to stress their confusion about a certain topic that either makes no sense or has no clear explanation. Using WTF does not imply that you want an explanation at all. Instead, you’re only stressing a feeling.

Xeno: is a character pairing where one of them is an alien or a creature. The combination is usually a human with someone alien.

Yaoi: is a manga genre where two men are involved romantically. It’s also known as “boys love,” or slash in other fandoms. Yaoi is the acronym of “no climax, no punch line, no sense.” It’s used as a general world for BL, or boys love. In Japanese fandoms, yaoi is used for stories that are more worried about sex than anything else.

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Yuri: is a manga genre where two women are involved romantically. The word in Japanese means “lily.” The word is also used as a synonym of f/f slash.

Zine: is short for fanzine. Fanzines are like a magazine that have fanfiction stories in them. They’re usually published as physical copies, or in a CD-Rom format. Before the internet, zines were the most usual way to share fanfic stories and artwork around the world. They would be sent by post and shared at conventions. Some fans still create zines now as a way to help authors get published.

Have I missed any words? Leave them in comments 🙂

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A Geek Girl interested in Geek Anthropology, comic books, books, Superheroes and discovering all about pop culture.

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