So, here's the thing.
Lately my life has been quite a mess: I'm stranded on a foreign land trying to juggle work and university, I'm finding it REAL hard to make new friends, I'm constantly gaining weight because of all the accumulated stress, and so on and so forth. Nothing special, really, I assume we've all been here, but that does not make it easier for me.
A few months back I stumbled on the HD Fan Fair Career Fest and I thought to myself why not?[Story ensues...]
Mind, it had been about three or four years since I'd written anything at all, and at the time I was still writing in italian. So, no previous experience in participating to a fest, no previous experience in writing stories in english. Yeah well, I write scientific articles in english, but you don't exactly want your sex scene to sound like the proof of a theorem right?
The prompts were too irresistible to let all this stuff stop me from trying, so at the end I came up with this story (here on AO3) and with the help of a wonderful beta (you'll find her name in the notes in the links) I was able to put together what I considered a decent writing. Of course I was half excited and half scared when I published, and I was TERRIBLY anxious until my story came out.
I have to say, never I would've expected to feel so LOVED. Each end every comment or kudo gave me such a warm feeling that I almost cried every time. I realized I hadn't felt like that in a while, and that I needed it more than I thought. I needed to be part of something, part of a family that is so HUGE there is always someone backing you up. It felt like a cup of hot chocolate in winter, like the hug of a friend you haven't seen in a long time.
And the pride I felt! I was (am) proud of my efforts, after such a long time! I felt accomplished and so happy I would find myself smiling at the most awkward times just thinking about it! University does not give me that. My life does not give me that, at the moment.
I could not believe it when I was recced, recced, by capitu (here) and Dicta Contrion (here), both of which I consider deities of the drarry fandom. I felt like I won the Nobel Prize. That's it, my life is complete.
So yeah, that's my story. And what all of this reminded me of, is the reason why I like fandoms so much. And why I hate people who dismiss them as childish and useless. I feel better about myself, I feel accomplished and appreciated in a world where that does not happen often. I feel part of something where there are people that I admire and whose work I read constantly, and maybe now they've read mine. I don't feel so lonely anymore, and that's important to me.
And maybe that won't happen anymore, or maybe tomorrow the world will realize that my story was shit. But today I have one more reason to smile thanks to all of you, and that is enough.