My Life as a Slash Whore

How I Became a Reluctant Slasher


Hi. I'm Kev. I'm a guy. A gay guy. A guy who has been buddies with your intrepid webmistress brooklinegirl for, oh, a little over a decade. When she first got into slash, I was apalled. "That's that Kirk/Spock stuff, right? That's as bad as filk!"

Her tentative leanings toward the fanfic that dare not speak its name soon grabbed hold of her, and refused to let go. She was spending hours a day reading slash (then, her focus was mainly The A-Team), seeking out new websites, new authors, in order to find yet another beautiful multi-part epic or "first-time" tale starring Face and Murdock.

One day, she challenged me to write an A-Team story. Now, I'm what you might call an "unpublished novelist." I've written mysteries, horror novels, mainstream novels, science fiction, poetry, and essays ... and yes, even porn, once in awhile. But no way was I bending into this dark wind, no way was I ever going to write slash! That was brooklinegirl's provence: even if I wanted to, I hadn't watched the show since I was ten. I knew nothing about the characters except for what she told me, and I knew nothing about the tenets of the genre. But she persisted. And persisted. And, eventually, I produced my very first slash story: "Reach Back, Remember," an NC-17 romp with a title cribbed from a Van Halen song. Fine. One slash story. No big deal, right?

The Tour of Duty Years

Yeah, so that's a no. What happened next is that brooklinegirl got obsessed - I'm not kidding, obsessed with Tour of Duty. Something about Viet Nam and men in rumbled fatigues. I dunno, I never watched the show. But she helped created a whole website devoted to ToD fiction - slash or otherwise - and participated in monthly "round-robins," in which one epic story was told in thousand-word increments by various members of her community. Once, she got me to contribute a part - just a tiny part - to one of her round-robins.

That was the first time I got feedback. And boy, do I like feedback. Any writer does. And I realized that with my mainstream work, especially my novels, feedback was often a long time in coming. In this, I could dash off a segment of a story, post it, and get immediate response. There's nothing like instant gratification in this MTV life.

More round-robin section somehow spiraled into my own need to create a pairing between two guys on Tour of Duty who are never paired: Zeke and Percell. It was my way of breaking from the Myron/Zeke or Myron/Johnny "norm" of Tour of Duty slashdom, a way of slashing (heh) my own niche in this strange new world. The girls seemed to like it, anyway. I still haven't ever watched an episode.

Slashing Comes Home

Around this time, I started getting into comic books: Spider-Man, Alias, Hulk ... and Daredevil. The concept: Matt Murdock, successful lawyer by day is also Daredevil, vigilante by night. Matt was blinded by radioactive waste as a child, but the waste heightened all his other senses, which gives him an advantage. His dark world is filled with lots of noir angst, which totally works for me on a story level.

Matt's legal partner is Foggy Nelson, a pudgy, nerdy guy who's whip-smart. Throughout the years, the only person who has always stood by Matt's side is Foggy. The only person...

This is the first time I discovered slash on my own. My unfortunate plight through this whole thing is that I am so niche that no one else has written stories about these people. So, here I am, tearing my heart out writing these bleak angsty tales about comic book characters, and no one's ever gonna read them. But for me, it didn't matter. Yep. I was writing slash, on my own, just because I wanted to. Oh, what a sickness this is!

To Sum Up

Thigs just spiraled from there. Brooklinegirl lost interest in ToD but picked up due South, which hosts various "challenges" every other week or so. The deal is, the moderators of her dS group pick a topic, and everyone else has to write about it in some way. This is where all my dS stories come from.

I'm not even going to try to explain Roy Orbison in Clingfilm. It was the most fucked-up thing I've ever seen on the net, and each story by the web host featured a very few simple elements: Roy Orbison, clingfilm, Jetta the terrapin, and halting, stilted English. Seemed easy enough to write stories about, as long as you were in on the joke. I'm not sure the original webmaster was in on the joke. And that's scary.

As for Head of the Class? Well, I'm intrigued by teacher/student pairings. People 'round the net are doing Harry Potter/Snape and no one seems one wrong thing about it. So stop tormenting me! Dennis and Mr. Moore are soinlove!

And, in keeping with my habit of pairings no one else cares about, I wrote a Cinderella Man tale (the first of, I hope, many), and I'm currently working on some Entourage stuff (Ari/Turtle; no one's gonna read it.) I hope to carve out a niche as the World's Most Obscure Slasher, one f'd-up pairing at a time.

And dude, that's pretty much all she wrote. I write slash. I'm not always proud of it, and when I am proud of it (like with "Demian"), I'm not proud of being proud of it. It's a strange life here, being an adjunct to brooklinegirl's twisted world ... but it's okay, too. All things are cool in the happy friend box.

happy friend home