FanFiction.Net vs. Archive of Our Own

FanFiction.Net vs. Archive of Our Own: A Comparison of Two Fan Fiction Archives

Fan fiction is a widely popular hobby on the internet today. While fan fiction has been around for decades, earlier shared in fanzines or passed-around, type-written stories, since the 1990s there has been an explosion of fan fiction websites and archives on-line. People share their fan fiction stories through internet mailing lists, journaling and social media networks like LiveJournal and Tumblr, and also through archive websites. These archives can be small and focused on specific fandoms, such as Twilight, Star Trek or Harry Potter, or they can be large and all-encompassing, open to almost any and all kinds of fan fiction.

Two of the largest and most well-known multi-fandom archives today are FanFiction.Net and Archive of Our Own. In this article, I will give a brief introduction to both as well as a comparison of their features, usability and critcisms. You'll also have a chance, if you use either/both archives, to sound off on your opinions as to which one better suits your needs. There are certainly pros and cons to both archives, yet for a fan fiction author who wants to preserve his or her work and present it to a wider audience, using one - or both - of these archives may be worthwhile.

Are You Familiar With These Fan Fiction Archives? - Please note: No cursing/foul language allowed in comments! If you swear, your comment will not be posted!

How familiar are you with FanFiction.Net and Archive of Our Own?

  • I'm quite familiar with these archives and use them both, either for reading fanfiction and for archiving fanfiction.
  • I've checked out both sites, but prefer one over the other.
  • I'm familiar with both sites, but do not use either for fan fiction reading or archiving.
  • I'm only familiar with Archive of Our Own.
  • I'm only familiar with FanFiction.Net.
  • I'm not familiar with either archive.
  • Other (leave a comment!)
See results without voting
FanFiction.Net's front page
FanFiction.Net's front page


The internet's largest fan fiction archive.

FanFiction.Net (FFN) was launched October 15, 1998 by Los Angeles computer programmer Xing Li. Xing Li was not himself heavily involved in fandom, but hosted the site on a server connected to his place of employment where it was considered a test of the server's functionality.

FanFiction.Net quickly rose in popularity, being one of the few archives at the time open to just about any kind of fandom, not just a single specific universe, anime or TV series. Originally the archive was open to anyone over the age of 18 who wished to register for an account, and allowed any storing rating, from general audiences ("G") to explicit adult ("NC-17"). Stories about celebrities including musicians, actors and sports players (ie, Real Person Fiction) were allowed along with those stories written about television series, fictional books, comics, anime and movies.

Eventually the website needed to employ advertising in order to keep the server running due to increasing demand and use. However, registered members could pay for a premium account if they did not want to see ads and have access to other special functions. This function was not heavily embraced by users and eventually abandoned in favor of advertising support only.As the archive grew in popularity and size, certain types of content were officially banned and other changes implemented. In 2002, NC-17 rated stories were no longer allowed (although enforcement of this policy is up to users reporting stories; there are still many explicit-content fictions to be found on the site.) Real person/celebrity fiction was disallowed in 2003. Other topics such as songfic, Choose-Your-Own-Adventure, and non-fiction lists have also been banned through the years, although again enforcement is spotty at best. The site has also disallowed fan-fiction based on certain works after receiving requests from their creators, including authors such as Anne Rice, P. N. Elrod, Laurell K. Hamilton, Nora Roberts/J.D. Robb, Raymond Feist and Terry Goodkind.

The age limit for site registration is now 13. As of 2010, the site had over 2.2 million users and stories posted in over 30 languages. Its largest fandom as of the end of 2011 was Harry Potter, with over 570,000 stories posted in that category alone. Naruto was the second most popular fandom, with over 290,000 stories. FanFiction.Net also features active forums for users to discuss their fandoms, Communities of moderated, hand-selected fiction, and a list of beta readers available to help authors improve their work. The site now has a mobile version and RSS feeds one can subscribe to, in order to see the latest works in particular fandoms.

In 2012 there was a widespread purge of adult content from the site, which had widespread impact throughout fanfiction communities online.

Where to learn more about FanFiction.Net:

* FanFiction.Net - FanHistory (features lengthy timeline through 2010 of events in FanFiction.Net's history)

* FanFiction.Net - Wikipedia

* FanFiction.Net - Fanlore

Criticisms of FanFiction.Net

FanFiction.Net may be the largest fan fiction archive on the internet, but it's not everyone's favorite site by a long shot. These are some of the common criticisms of the site.

  1. Difficulty finding quality fiction amidst all of the dreck. As Sturgeon's Law proposes, 90% of everything is crap - and that means there is an AWFUL lot of crap on FanFiction.Net. Indeed, the site has long been known as "The Pit of Voles", derided as the home of some of the worst of the worst that fan fiction has to offer. Lack of proper spelling and punctuation, poor characterization, childish plotting and blatant Mary Sues - to many, this is what FanFiction.Net represents.
  2. Limitations on allowed content. As the site grew to astronomical proportions and needed to start accepting advertising to stay afloat, it is not surprising that it had to start restricting content in order to be acceptable to non-adult oriented advertisers. Yet that means that the site is technically useless to fan-fiction authors who write about subjects or include content that is no longer allowed, such as bandfic or adult fan-fiction. For many years, however, writers of adult fan-fiction have kept posting their stories on, as enforcement of these policies was poor at best. This has changed in May of 2012, as a widespread purge of adult-content stories has begun, angering many users of the site. Statistics on Fanlore suggest that over 17,000 Harry Potter stories alone were deleted during this purge, along with thousands in other top fandoms.
  3. Sorting multiple-character/relationship fiction is difficult. FanFiction.Net only allows one to sort/filter fiction within a fandom by two characters (Kirk and Spock in "Star Trek"). What if you are looking for stories featuring more characters or complicated relationships (yes, people do write Kirk/Spock/Uhura poly relationships, or perhaps love triangles such as Kirk/Uhura and Uhura/Spock). With AO3's freeform tag system, it is much easier to label and look for such stories.Update! As of March 15, 2013, now allows four characters to be assigned to a story, not just two.
  4. Annoying advertising. Some users find the full page ads one must skip over or wait to load on FanFiction.Net extremely annoying - particularly those on slower internet connections.
  5. Disinterest in punishing/banning plagiarist authors and plagiarism. Plagiarism can be a major problem in fan-fiction, as some think that because "all fan fiction is stealing" that it is perfectly fine to steal another's words and claim them as their own. That can be a fan fiction author stealing content word-for-word from a published author's work, or from another fan fiction author (often times only changing characters' names and minor details, to publish a story in a different fandom.) When such incidents have occurred on FanFiction.Net, they have generally been ignored by the site administrators.

Screenshot of the AO3 homepage
Screenshot of the AO3 homepage

Archive of Our Own

Noncommercial and Nonprofit.

Archive of Our Own (AO3) first launched in beta-testing on November 14, 2009. The archive is a project of the Organization for Transformative Works, a non-profit organization which promotes the legitimate and transformative nature of fan works including fan fiction, fan vids and fan art.

It was originally proposed in 2007, in part as a reaction against the recently-launched archive FanLib. FanLib faced deep criticism by the media fandom community at the time for its corporate sponsorship and funding and apparent lack of understanding of how fan communities truly operated. At the time, many older, smaller fan fiction archives were disappearing as free hosting sites popular in the 1990s and early 2000s were disappearing or going out of business.

AO3 has grown slowly, as one requires an invite code to join (if you request one, it can take anywhere from a month to upwards of 5-6 months to receive one, according to recent reports.) The archive is now the home of the large, annual small-fandom fest Yuletide, which is how many members of AO3 have gotten accounts there by signing up to take part in the exchange. Some of the features and highlights of AO3 include:

* Open to all kinds of fandoms, including Real Person Fiction

* Open to all ratings of fan-fiction, from general audiences to adult. Content which is not allowed includes text of or links to "child pornography (images of real children); warez, cracks, hacks or other executable files and their associated utilities; trade secrets, restricted technologies, or classified information; or if it consists entirely of actual instruction manuals, technical data, recipes, or other non-fanwork content, including non-fanwork creative work". (Site Terms of Service.) Other policies are in place to disallow harassment or threats against real people, whether other users or people named in fictional stories.

* As of February 2013, the archive now allows users to host meta fandom writings as well as fiction.

* Ability to lock story visibility to other AO3 members only, to minimize search engine inclusion (some authors don't want their stories showing up in general Google searches.)* Allowance of certain fandoms (include Anne Rice's "Vampire Chronicles") and story types (including songfic) which have been banned from FanFiction.Net.

* Ability to link various pseudonyms and names under one account, and to also "orphan" stories to remove your name from them

* A complex tagging system so that stories can be searched by theme (romance, hurt/comfort), trope (Steampunk AU, Aliens made them do it) or whatever an author may choose

* Backdating system, useful if one is trying to organize all of her fanfiction chronologically

* Ability to import stories from other URLs

* Collections and challenges

* A "Kudos" button to show that you read a story and enjoyed it, without having to leave written feedback

* Ability to add new fandoms if not already listed, without having to wait for a site administrator to add them

* A warning system for common fannish triggers and controversial subjects - which an author can choose or choose not to use

As of January 2012, Archive of Our Own featured approximately 8,300 fandoms, 290,000 archived works and 33,500 users. The most popular fandoms at that time include Stargate (18,300 stories), Harry Potter (17,900 stories) and Supernatural (14,300).The minimum age for registering for an account is 13.

Links to learn more:

* Archive of Our Own - Fanlore

* Archive of Our Own - FanHistory

* Organization for Transformative Works - Wikipedia

Criticisms of Archive of Our Own

The following are some of the criticisms which have been made by some of Archive of Our Own as a fan-fiction archive. While the site has been embraced by many, there are those who are not as thrilled with the archive or have had issues with it in the past.

  1. Too heavily focused on media fandom. The archive administrative team has been accused on numerous occasions of having little understanding of how other fanfiction communities operate, such as music and anime fandoms. Everything from the site's design to category structure reflects a Western media fandom bias, particularly that of LiveJournal media fandom. As such, many outside of Western media fandoms do not feel welcomed contributing to the site nor feel like their specific community issues and needs are being addressed.
  2. No ability to sort out crossovers from non-crossover stories. Crossover stories, involving characters from multiple fannish sources in one story, are quite popular among many fanfiction readers and writers. However, some readers do not care for crossovers in general or at all, and AO3 doesn't have an easy way to filter crossover stories out of the listings returned for a particular fandom. In comparison, FanFiction.Net has a completely separate section of their website for crossover fiction only, so it's easier to find (or not find) such stories as you wish.
  3. Frequent downtime/slow server response. As the site's userbase has grown, some have reported increasing errors and downtime when trying to access the site. This has become particularly troublesome around the end of May/early June 2012, perhaps linked to the sudden surge of interest in Avengers fandom as well as the mature-content purge at This has lead some to wonder if the archive can really keep running on its current hardware, software, and financial donations to OTW alone.
  4. The tagging system is a mess. Writers are allowed to use however many different tags as they want to on their stories and there is very little structure to the tagging system. Even within a single fandom, one character may have their name "tagged" in multiple different ways - making it difficult to easily filter only for stories featuring them. The archive does employ a team of Tag Wranglers whose sole task is to link together related tags to be more searchable. (For instance, if I search for the tag "vampire AU", 9 different tags are currently returned for me to sort through including "vampire AU, "'verse: Vampire AU" "vampire!AU" and "sherlock bbc john watson holmes vampire au".) However, as the archive grows and grows, keeping up with all of the freeform, user-generated tags can become difficult - and some tag wranglers have expressed frustration with the system and how their committee has been handled. It doesn't help when you have some authors tagging everything and anything possible to an almost laughable extent. Do we really need to know that many details about a story before reading it? Are these things people will actually want to search based upon?
  5. Lack of community/readers don't comment and review. Many authors seem to view AO3 as a convenient "storage bin" for all of their old works, dropping stories there but rarely reading others' works. Many fan communities even with large numbers of stories on AO3 are far more active elsewhere, such as on LiveJournal communities or smaller, fandom-focused websites. With the "Kudos" button feature, readers are less likely to leave actual feedback or interact with authors, since they can just hit "Kudos" to show that they read and at least moderately enjoyed a story.
  6. Hard to keep up with what's new in a particular fandom. With backdating, sometimes it's hard to just find what are the newest stories posted in a particular fandom. However, rss feed subscriptions have recently been introduced, allowing interested readers to subscribe to not just favorite authors but favorite fandoms as well.
  7. No filter "out" options, period. Many users have expressed annoyance that there is no way to search on AO3 to "filter out" unwanted tags, characters, or types of fiction. For instance, if a Harry Potter fan didn't want to read about any stories heavily featuring Severus Snape, or slash as a tag, you can't do that. In very large fandoms this makes searching for stories a person actually wants to read rather difficult, particularly as there is also a 1,000 work cap on search results. Now that the archive allows for the hosting of meta posts and they are mixed in with the fiction, more users are annoyed by this inability to filter out the types of content they do not want to read.
  8. Too much adult content/no way to filter out adult summaries and titles. While some appreciate the freedom of AO3's accepting of gen to mature/explicit content, not everyone is happy about it. Some feel as though AO3 has become little more than a "smut dump" (see comments at bottom of this page), with certain fandom's categories completely predominated by sexually explicit material. This is why some wish there was an easy way to filter out content - both stories themselves and story titles/tags/summaries - if undesirable or intended for adults only.
  9. Increasingly long wait for an invite code. On June 11, 2012, Lucy Pearson posted on the OTW news site that there are currently over 17,000 requests in the queue for invitation codes. However, since the beginning of 2013 it appears that the wait time for invite codes has decreased considerably; it may take only a week or less currently to get access to a user account.
  10. Coding problems from the ground up/three years and the site is still in beta. Some have begun to wonder if the site will ever "officially" launch and get current coding and hardware issues sorted out. In a June 2012 Dreamwidth post, "branchandroot" said: "When a platform is so ----ed up that the only way to make it run is to take out the navigation, then it's time to think real hard about who's been driving development."

Make Your Choice: Which Archive Do You Think Is Better? - FanFiction.Net or Archive of Our Own?

You've read the basic information, examined some of the pros and cons of each, now it's time to leave your opinion. Which fan fiction archive do you prefer, and why?NOTE: All comments are subject to approval and any comments using foul or abusive language will be immediately deleted.

Which archive is better: FanFiction.Net or Archive of Our Own?


Julia 13 months ago

I actually prefer While the writing is worse, I can't stand the way ao3 is formatted on my phone. Also publishing on ao3 is a pain in the a** I would copy and paste my work into the box and then find that I would have to format it all over again. I find the tagging system useful, but it's a little out of control sometimes and I haven't entirely figured out what the symbols next to the title of the doc mean. One thing I do like about ao3 is how easy it is to analyze reader activity on your work. Wish it was a little less complicated on Ao3 also requires a little more tech knowledge than the average person. has its flaws, but it's easier to filter the work and the communities are nice for finding good quality fics.

Lynn 13 months ago

I started out on ffn reading naruto fanfic, and switching to hetalia. I was there for the great purge of 2012. It was a sad time for readers because many of the authors were leaving in frustration of their fanfics getting deleted. Than I was introduced to One Direction and Larry Stylinson in particular. There were NO fanfics or really crappy ones on ffn, my friend told me the good ones were on ao3. After 5 days, my invite was working. I found everything to be great on ao3. More fanfics, alot of them were well written. I liked that there seemed to be more fandoms too. My authors liked to add fan art/ pictures to their fics which is a plus for ao3. Also, the download option is great for when I'm near the limit of data on my phone.

The Orlando Gray 15 months ago

It seems on both sides people support SO3. To me, it doesn't matter. I am a writer. I want to write books. But I'm being smart and posting on both sites. Well, I will be. I'm waiting on my invite from SO3.

That is strange to me. If they accept anybody, why do they have an invite system instead of a sign-up system? And it sounds like SO3 has been in beta for over 2yrs. That tells me something is not being done right there.

I am currently using FF.NET and I'm getting views, but no real reviews since the last post. I should think that is a good thing since I want to write great stories while minimizing my mistakes but... I also don't have anyone favoriting my post, no followers. That isn't my beef with FF.NET though.

My beef is that they don't have a comment section, they have a review section. And when people were leaving comments in the review section my replies counted as reviews. Also, it's hard for me to read anything. I don't like to sit around reading a screen. I much rather prefer a book. Whenever I read something online (Like this article and many of it's comments) I copy and paste it on my TEXTTOWAV and watch the words go by as I listen to it, studying the copy so I can learn and improve. Or do something else online while I listen to it. I don't have the option to copy and paste on FF.NET, but I do with SO3.

Another beef! I am a writer. I'm building an audience before I publish my first book and yet I can't post links to my sites on FF.NET. Sure, I can post links to social media, but not my author site so people can sign up for my email list.

Another thing. I added a picture to my story, but it keeps alternating. It keeps going from the image I uploaded to my profile image. Just today I checked the story I am currently working on and the image I uploaded for the story was gone. I had to re-upload it.

There is one thing good I can say about FF.NET, I can respect someone who stands up to their users and say no to adult content. I probably would have written Fan Fiction about my favorite shows as a kid if Fan Fiction wasn't associated with explicate or sexual content. It's that bad name that has kept me from reading it, writing it or even caring whenever I go by it. And it wasn't just the sexual content. I heard how poorly written Fan Fiction is and the very creepy and messed up creativity from people I do not want to get to know. As I reading through the terms and what not and the rules and guidelines about posting, they expect you to edit your stuff and they outlaw things I don't want to see. I'm cool with that. I just wish they'd actually enforce it. A few years ago when I was considering writing Fan Fiction my first stop was FanFiction.Net. After reading two different stories, I found that I couldn't get through either of them because of the content. I mean I am the guy who never has read 50 Shades of Grey, never will read it. And it makes me cry that they actually made a movie of it. Not actual tears, BUT INSIDE!!! Anyway, will never watch that movie.

I hate Harry Potter. I could and would never want to get through those books and I could barely make it through the first movie. Hmm, I see why people don't want to mess with my writing.

On another note, I don't have any respect for.... SO3. Sorry forgot the name for a sec. Their content may be better, but the things they allow turn me away. Sex is unappealing to me. I want to view a raw story. Stories with action, adventure, and yes even romance, but when you take romance and make it erotic count me out. I've noticed that many of the people who support SO3 are and quote "anonymous". People hiding their names because they don't want people to know they support that kind of stuff. But I think you know it's wrong, you know it's wrong in your heart but you haven't accepted it yet. And until you do you don't want people to know you are confused. Sorry to get a little preachy there. I do enjoy my Bible and I wasn't even a Christian two years ago when I was considering FF.NET. You if want to debate or talk religion my email is

closing this now, I am going to use both, but in a decision I would choose FanFiction.Net because they support more of the values I support than SO3. SO3 may have better stories, but if I wanted to read something great I'll buy an ebook in the same genre I like by an author who is unknown. The difference, I'm not getting the same crap you would get from Fan Fiction. It's a story distorted into someone else's version. I really can't understand why anyone would want to steal it. Unless they intend to take it and publish it on Amazon.

Sorry for the long post. I can't help it. One thing came to mind after the other. It really can't be helped because after all, I am a writer.

Anonymous 15 months ago

I actually really like the tagging system on ao3, although it is difficult to filter out things you don't want to see. However, if you know what you *do* want to see, it's way easier to find it on ao3 than It really just depends on what you're looking for.

thefansfan 17 months ago

I can say, quite the interesting article. I myself hve used and enjoyed both sites, i can say Ao3 has the potential over if the tag and filter system was cleared up, and perhaps added a pm option this would become a near perfect avanue for fanfiction. the only reason that really even use anymore is because of the massive volume of storys of fandoms i enjoy that havntt caught on much on Ao3 (adventure time, Invader zim, mostly old cartoons) however the quality of what is there on Ao3 is much better, unlike how you must wade through the quite frankly shit on fanfiction to find those truly gold stories. Ao3 needs to catch itself up but i have a feeling that, in time things will improve.

Kit 18 months ago

I use both. I definitely think loading your work on is easier but I actually feel there's more community on ao3. I also feel the quality of work is better on ao3. I find it very hard to find good writing on

Hina 21 months ago

I use both Ao3 and ffnet. I've been on ffnet for over twelve years now and i quite enjoy it because of the diversity and the fandoms I'm apart of but ffnet has its drawbacks as well. Like people going around flaming others in story reviews and we can't delete the flaming reviews unless they're the non-member written ones. Ffnet isn't all that moderated. I don't know how moderated ao3 is, but i do love the tagging system and how we can make actual author notes at the beginning and end of the chapters. If it came down to me wanting reviews Id stick with ffnet but if i wanted more organization ao3 is where i go.

amnaxo 23 months ago

I first discovered fan fiction on, and for quite a while, I used that website. However, once I found AO3, I can honestly say that I wouldn't look back at with a second glance. AO3 has so much better quality of writing, and is actually legible. has fanfics that sound like they've been witten by fifth graders. As for the content and tags, I think that once AO3 launches its official site, that could be resolved. I wouldn't mind the wait, since I'm perfectly happy with the site I have right now.

Anonymous 2 years ago was the first site I used to read fanfics and had been using it for years. Even though I have experience with it once I found ao3 I completely abandoned it. I only ever use if I can't find any good fics for a certain fandom now. I just found it difficult to sort through what I wanted on

Noonie 2 years ago

On a couple of the AO3 criticisms, 1) The wait time for an invite has been down to a DAY or less for over a year now, for the most part. (Occasionally it stretches up to two days if there's a run on them.) 2. You CAN filter things out, although it's not yet exactly intuitive. It's been mentioned in a few of their newsposts and there's a tumblr that shows how at filter-me-ao3, which I think is something of a godsend.

InsinuateJealousy 2 years ago

I greatly prefer Archive of our own to I find the archive to be much more "user friendly" and I appriciate the freedom of speech.

I will also comment that the title of "Smut Dump" is entirely false. "Smut" writers were banned from, so they go to the Archive. If you are uncomfortable with "smut," then just stay on, it's been banned there, after all.

anonymous 3 years ago

I is ONLY better because of the number of views and reviews you can get there, the stat view and the PM-ing. I can't get half as many views on AO3, I don't like that my comments to reviews count as comments themselves, and I don't like that you can't necessarily "favorite" a story. But if I could get as many views, and PM people I would be perfectly content. AO3 would win, hands down. AO3 actually allows mature content and even so, I have a hard time finding mature content myself! So i have no idea why people complain about the sexual content or whatever.

anonymous 3 years ago

Okay, I joined a couple of years ago and it was quite recently that I discovered Archive of our own. The advantages are clearly the tagging system and the complex filter options. The lack of censorship is both advantage and disadvantage. You can post (practically) anything, and you are even given filter options such as "underage" or "rape/non-con" ( for example blocks these searches) and search for these themes specifically. You also have the option of searching for one-chapters, so basically PWPs. on the other hand has longer stories, more motivated authors (due to the review option?) and since you can sort the stories by number of favourites you can easily distinguish the better from the worse FFs. The site however has banned some well written and complex FF with adult content that was crucial for the story. In conclusion: Ao3 is great for adult content and for some stories that authors have put on this site to flee from the purge, but if I want to read long, good (well, as good as FF can be) stories, I'd go to every day.

anonymous 3 years ago

Of course. I recently joined both, and honestly? While AO3 does admittedly have better quality fanfictions as an average, FFN.Net is much better for both readers and users. Posting stories and chapters is much easier. You get more reviews, more feedback. FFN.Net is cleaner, easier, and more convenient. I think many of those who chose AO3 are correct that FFN.Net does often have writers who aren't very good at what they do, but I also do not hesitate to insist that after experiencing the difficulties posting for the authors and in general how unorganized AO3 is, I have no choice but to choose FFN.Net. And besides, FFN.Net fiction wouldn't be so bad if you AO3 people hadn't completely ditched the many good writers of FFN.Net and now snub us just because we're bigger. You want FFN.Net to have better stories? Then why don't you start posting your stories on FFN.Net instead of just complaining, hmm?

anonymous 3 years ago

I'd say I'm actually a bit neutral on this one. Fanfiction is overall, I think, a better-designed site, and I can't say I don't LOVE the PM features and how it doesn't count author replies as reviews. However, I like how AO3 doesn't automatically filter crossovers from regular fanfiction because my stories are so much easier to find and read. Also loving the tags-seriously, it's a much better way to find what you're looking for without having to specify eighteen hundred million things like on Fanfiction. I'd say that if AO3 gets a PM feature, figures out that annoying Kudos thing (and the comments omg please stop counting my replies as comments), and generally just makes the system design slightly better, it will dominate the fanfiction community. But for now I'm going to have to say Fanfiction wins.

anonymous 3 years ago

I currently prefer FF. I use AO3, but I'm not as impressed with it's overall system as I am with the FF system. Still, I browse through both.

anonymous 3 years ago

I have been a writer on FFn for about two years and I can say, I believe I would actually stick to FFn without even using AO3. I mean, the cons to AO3 is just WAY worse than FFn. Believe me, FFn is the site to go for hands down (or hooves if you are a brony, like me).

anonymous 3 years ago

I was introduced to fanfiction through and I still use it as my primary source, though I'm starting to use ao3 a bit. has a lot more stories and a larger community. Despite all the "banned" content on, there's a ton of it floating around. Also, it's easier to find quality stories because you can search by 'favorites' or 'reviews'. While I've noticed the quality of ao3 stories is more consistent, the tagging system really confuses me. Also, since ao3 is a relatively new site, there are a lot less stories and I have trouble finding anything I want to read in some of my fandoms.

anonymous 3 years ago

I use both for reading but I only write on fanfiction. I think both have their pros and cons.Personally, I feel fanfiction has a more involved community which I enjoy, but AO3 generally has less bad quality stories and more specific tags if I am looking for a certain tag.

anonymous 3 years ago

Well, I have to go with FF for a lot of reasons. One, I myself write a lot of fanfiction and the best part about it for me and what really keeps me going is getting a review. There is no way to actually know what the reader liked and didn't like or what they suggest if you only have to push a button. I understand that AO3 is just starting out, but they need to adapt to the needs of viewers. Which brings me to my second point; because AO3 is new, it has a smaller base of fandoms and not a lot of fanfictiong written in general. I am a big fan of anime, but there is barely any on AO3 and that's really disappointing to me. The site needs to adapt to other cultures and the person who wrote this was right when she said that outsiders are feeling left out. I know that FF has flaws too, but nothing is perfect and people are just going to have to deal with that. I like FF better and probably always will, but everyone has their own opinions and I think people should respect that.

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    Archive of Our Own

    Rachel 15 months ago

    I really like the ability to download fics and read them offline. It is very convenient for me, because I don't have wi-fi at my house. AO3 all the way! :)

    nvzblgrrl 15 months ago

    I use both sites, and though my AO3 fics have the advantage of letting me post art with them, my version of the same story has gotten much more feedback and views in comparison. A lot of the content depends on the fandom and the age range of those within it, but with, it's much easier to remove the chaff from the quality works. I'm sure that AO3 will improve with time, but for now I await the ability to block certain tags.

    One can only take some much poorly written slash after all.

    anon 18 months ago

    Well, I'd actually publish stories and read fandom in A03 if I knew how to use paragraph tags and have time to sort through Ao3's system. I think I'll stay in for now.

    sockii 21 months ago from New Jersey

    Laura, I believe that is a recent chance/addition to the search features, so I do appreciate the update (and will update that information in the article as well.)

    anonymous 21 months ago

    After 10 years on, I first thought I wouldn't switch to AO3. But 2 years ago I got an account, because I wanted to comment and then I uploaded there as well. In the last 6 months I got more reviews on AO3 and found nearly all stories I wanted to read there too. I think I will abandon ffnet in 2015.

    Laura 21 months ago

    It isn't true that you can't filter things out on AO3. If you actually read the help portion related to the search, you merely type: -(whatever content you do not wish to see), and it will not pop up in any way, shape, or form

    anonymous 21 months ago

    Although I find that has a lot of amazing fanfictions on, I do find it's true that there is loads of (no offence) crap on there. Overall, I'm going to stick with Archive of Our Own. Despite the tagging system (it's a mess), I prefer it. When you upload things to AO3, it's a lot clearer on how you do it, and it's amazingly simple to edit works on there. On the other hand, it is extremely confusing when it comes to uploading and editing fics. Also, the Kudos function on AO3 is a lot quicker and more efficient than on, where you have to leave written feedback.

    Renne Michaels 22 months ago

    I have an account on both sites, while even a year ago I was getting many more hits on, I find that number to be down drow drastically, while the same story is getting increased activity on AO3. Also I get many more comments on AO3 and it is much easier to communicate with my readers, including those that don't comment, but read other people comments.

    anonymous 23 months ago

    I have been with for years now and it used to be my main source of fanfiction. Now all that has changed. While I still do go on, the overall quality of work on AO3 has me blown away. While there are still less than glamorous works on AO3, the worst ones I've seen are parody ones which are pretty much MEANT to be bad. AO3 makes it much easier to look for a couple. There's even a "relationships" search function which automatically makes the searching way easier than on While you can still click the characters' names that you want to read in a relationship, it doesn't necessarily guarantee that those two will be together in many fics. In fact, if your pair is not popular they will probably just be main characters or paired with someone else. I've seen a recent thing where they have something like [character.a, character.b] as pairings, but there's still no search function available for pairings. Also, AO3 has a far prettier layout and while it's less compact than it gives you time to take everything in before deciding if you want to read it or not. Tags could also be helpful for seeing what type of fanfic it could be. I personally don't search through tags, I search by relationship so the tag search thing is not a problem for me. Overall, AO3 has better quality work and I'm able to find everything easier and better than in And, by the way if you don't want to see adult content, simply change the rating to something else other than "Explicit". It's not that hard to filter sexual content out.

    InsinuateJealousy 2 years ago

    I also woul like to point out that it is nessesary to tag theings like "Blood and Gore," and "Non-consensual." These are possible traumatic triggers.

    This is extremely important. I cannot stress how much these tags are needed.

    anonymous 3 years ago

    I say that Archive if Our Own has the potential, very great potential, to be the better fanfiction archive. Ah, if only the technical issues, the problems with weird and exotic tags, the little-to-no-feedback could be solved in a year or so. I'm using FanFiction for the moment, since it's simply huge, gets lots of traffic and therefore there's more chance of readers and feedback to feed my fragile ego. I know I will upload my stories on Archive of Our Own as well, one of these days.

    anonymous 3 years ago

    After the purge, I switched to AO3. I found it easier to publish and read on this site. It has it's faults but it's still beta. Once they figure out their kinks, it'll be great. When you start censoring people, I'm out. Take the hint

    anonymous 3 years ago

    I find AO3 much more convenient for searching works, and the ability to view multi-chaps as one page is a godsend when your internet connection is as patchy as mine. Also better overall quantity of fics (at least it was before the mass-imports after the purge).

    anonymous 3 years ago

    I just recently started using AO3 after being on for years, and I already like AO3 more. The layout is prettier, there are way more options for tagging genres, characters, and themes, and I just learned that I can include images in my works. Being a perfectionist, I especially love how much easier it is to edit works on AO3 when I find a typo. I lost a story to the purge on, which annoyed me a lot. For one thing, no warning was given to edit before the story was removed. For another, I lost years of story stats data and comments which disappeared with the story. As for the wait time for an AO3 invite code, they seem to have got that under control. I received my invite last month within a couple of days of requesting it. I plan to continue maintaining archives on both sites, but I definitely prefer AO3.

    anonymous 3 years ago

    AO3 has a more pleasant interface to me and I like the multiple ways you can choose to view a story (eg. in chapters or as one whole). Being able to download stories in a variety of formats from the site is also incredibly helpful and one of my favourite features. Plus a bit of smut is always nice ;)

    anonymous 3 years ago

    I say AO3 is better. If you do not like the MA content, simply type in "E for everyone" or "General" or "Teen" ANYTHING other than "Explicit" in the search bar! DUH. But does give you way more reviews and views. -.-

    anonymous 3 years ago

    I'd say they are both fairly evenly matched. FF.NET has more stories and is easier to search, but the overall quality of stories is better and they have download feature is brilliant, too.

    anonymous 3 years ago

    I honestly love It's been my fanfiction site to go to for years, but I can't help it. I love the tagging system. If I want a story with a certain theme or element, it's almost impossible to find in, but on AO3, I just enter it in the tags search. To be fair, it could certainly be cleaned up a bit, but it's still my preferred when I'm in the mood for something specific. Also, a lot easier to sort through when the crap filter is more like 50% instead of 90%.

    anonymous 3 years ago

    Archive of Our Own

    anonymous 3 years ago

    As a reader, I moved completely away from because AO3 is so much more flexible and fun to use. The AO3 tagging system adds diversity to my search results and gives me the freedom to find fix based on either a relationship or a keyword. For example, I might just want to find all the wingfic in the SGA category, regardless of character or romantic bent. On, and this may have changed since I last used it, I kept getting the same hits 99% of the time and that is just really boring for someone like me who spends most of their nights surfing the web for good fiction to read.

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      Other Multi-Fandom Archives on the Internet - If neither FFN or AO3 is for you...

      These are not the only two large, multi-fandom archives on the internet today. Some other sites you might wish to explore include the following:

      © 2012 Nicole Pellegrini

      Any Final Thoughts on Fan Fiction Archives? - Feel free to comment here. 34 comments

      mythphile profile image

      mythphile 4 years ago from California

      They've wound up serving different purposes. Many of us hoped AO3 would be the answer to the problems of ffnet (almost wrote ficwad there, gack), but it introduced a host of new problems. Searching and the lack of community are the biggest ones, although the migration of most of my fandom to DW and some to Tumblr has the spillover effect that people are commenting a little more on AO3 where we'll see it. On the other hand, AO3 makes challenge communities and exchanges so much easier, and I am really grateful to be able to integrate my own illustrations and reader-submitted fanart right into the story -- or, heck, share my fanart!AO3's download and reader functions make it easier for those who have migrated to tablets (they are really helpful if one has minor vision issues). I like AO3 better. But in practice, I get more reedback on ffnet. So I cross-post.

      sockii profile image

      sockii 4 years ago from New Jersey Author

      @mythphile: Hey Greekgeek! Glad to see another fandom person here. (I write fanfic under a different name but have been active on and elsewhere for ages.) I definitely agree that both of the archives serve different purposes and audiences; I used to post to but since a lot of my fiction is more adult-oriented, I had to take it down once the site's policies changed. And even though I have my own fic site and archive my stories on fandom-specific websites, I've found cross-posting to AO3 has certainly brought in a new audience for my work. My biggest issue with the site these days is the tagging system and how unwieldy it is, particularly in fandoms with a lot of characters and pairings that haven't been "tag-wrangled" yet.I definitely do more browsing for fic on AO3 these days than elsewhere, but I do have a lot of lingering concerns about the site architecture and how well it's designed for future growth and expansion. I just hope their means aren't exhausted by their lofty goals.

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I find both sites perfectly functional personally. I must say AO3 has recently become, at least for some fandoms, nothing more than a smut dump. I don't really see any quality increase in the fics either. If AO3 actually allowed for the ability to filter out a tag it'd be much more pleasant. Not everybody wants to read about an author's homosexual pedophilia incest fanfic filled to the brim with absolutely creepy kinks and personally don't even want to read the description of said fic. The fact that said fics are even allowed on the site is kinda iffy if you were to ask me.

      anonymous 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Unfortunately, I find this to be true. Some of the descriptions for the stories should be screened. They are very hard core, and I wish like they would make the Explicit and Mature rated works only visible if you elected to see them.

      anonymous 4 years ago

      This is cool. I like how you laid everything out. I admit to being very familiar with ffnet but found AO3 rather confusing while trying to navigate a few months back. I was surprised by how current your information is and was looking for when you posted this but couldn't find the date. Is this just something that is under constant construction as the sites roll out new policies?

      sockii profile image

      sockii 4 years ago from New Jersey Author

      @anonymous: @Leila - yes, I am continuing to update this page as site changes roll out (both on FF.N and AO3). It seems as though the recent crackdown on Mature content at FF.N has brought a lot of people to this page looking for more information to compare them both, so I am trying to work on updating as best as I can. Thanks for reading!

      sockii profile image

      sockii 4 years ago from New Jersey Author

      @anonymous: Thanks for your comments - I will add some more details to the criticisms of AO3 about this. I know it's become a popular place for people to post their "kink meme" stories, and I wouldn't be surprised to hear a lot of adult content is moving there after the recent FF.N crackdown.

      AmyCat 4 years ago

      You raise some good points, pro and con, about both sites. Several of the criticisms of my preferred site, AO3, are valid... but given the responsiveness of the AO3 staff, I'm optimistic about the biggest one (inability to set searches to *exclude* as well as *include* tags or ratings) eventually being addressed. Nothing I've heard or seen leads me to think the folks have much interest in pleasing fans... as witness this latest "purge".THanks for a great article!

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I read from both but only have fic posted on LJ. My preference is for AO3. The silly purging on FFnet and the very childish, 'review or I won't post' peeves me off royally. Initially it seemed as if AO3 might be harder to navigate but as you use it you should find it very user friendly, My one complaint about AO3 is the frequently very slow loading of the fandom pages, the stories come up fairly quickly when you click on them. I assume it is because of the high volume of transfers they are getting right now both from FFnet and 852 Prospect. Hopefully it will ease up in a month or so aftewr all the stories are transferred.

      anonymous 4 years ago

      A word of warning about FicWad -- the owner hasn't been around to fix many of the errors that are developing and the forums are full of spammers. So use at your own risk.

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I can't stand FFnet, stopped using it six years ago, removed all my fic and won't touch anything posted on it. Apart from the eye-watering bad writing on the site, the reason I read or write fanfiction at all is because I appreciate how creativity flourishes in spite of external controls, so when a pack of highhanded and self-entitled authoritarians try to control what gets posted, it defeats the purpose and what little enjoyment might be had out of that steaming pile. The censorship and purging actually started years ago.

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Lots of information here which is great. I used to use a while back and was very happy with it until I got a virus which has slowed down my computer for years. I have used AO3 more recently and I like it except for the unavailability issues mentioned. I have avoided snce the virus incident but I would like to return if that kind of problem is gone. I'm not surehow to safely find out however. Anyway I have issues with both sites so for now I have to go to alternative sites (like LiveJournal for instance). Thank you for the article

      anonymous 4 years ago

      2 things that are worth mentioning. 1-comepleted fics. for me, i've noticed that more fics on AO3 are finished over the other thing for me is the download option. i just got an ereader, and its the best for fanfiction, but only if i can get it on there. :]

      anonymous 4 years ago

      The truth is that I prefer AO3 despite several drawbacks, I feel a comfort to read. The interface is friendly and the typography of the text is beautiful, I think the fact that it has the possibility of Kudos, is great and encouraged to comment, despite all claims to the contrary. And I can download the pdf format of the fic to keep it in a folder! It's great, that and to allow the MA rating, although some people seem inaccurate. Where does it go then? It's a fanfic! No more censorship. Just I wish the site was more orderly, and there were more fics in Spanish, but that I must wait.

      JoshK47 4 years ago

      I can't say I've actually ever been to AO3 - I have a few pieces up on from back in the day, but that was years ago. Very nice lens!

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I've used both sites, and I really don't get AO3's structure. When you click on a tag, you have to sort through a bunch of stuff you don't want, and it's a pain to deal with overall. Although at times it's quite useful, I generally dislike the tag system. With, I find it much easier to find what I'm looking for. Also, in regards to what some have said about the quality, I honestly don't think it's that bad. Sure, there are fics with bad grammar and spelling- but not everyone is a great writer, and it seems to me that a lot of people don't respect that enough. Also, I haven't found this to happen exceedingly often. There was one instance of an author spelling the main character's name five different ways- all of them wrong. This is just my opinion of course, but I'm not really against the purge. I have found way too many misclassified fanfics, and as a fourteen year old, I don't think it's right to find an extremely graphic sex scene under a T rating. I'd like to preserve my innocence, thank you. It would have been alright if they had kept the MA rating, and just kept it separate from the rest.

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I never had any idea sites like this were out there. Though I don't do it much, I do creative writing exercises involving my favorite characters (Conan, James Bond, etc.). I'll have to check out both sites and decide on one. Thanks.

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I think FFN is much surperior, and unless you're in the Glee fandom, or like anime, there's a lot of amazing stories out there for you to read. And, let's face it, AO3 is a disaster right now. Maybe once it finally gets out of beta, it'll be better, but it's borderline unusable right now. Don't even get me started on the tags. They make me want to disembowel myself with a blunt teaspoon. It's a disaster, and there's so much tagging and stupid tags, and variation on tags, and it's just really ____ed up. And AO3 is really ugly. FFn's simplicity is oft complained about, but I think complex site's with lots of bright graphics and such are distracting to the story.There's also quite a bit more community at FFN. You actually get, y'know, reviews. I know you AO3 people must think they're just myths, but they exist over at, if you don't like either, Livejournal is a good alternative!

      Li-Li-ThePinkBookworm 4 years ago

      Great lens idea! Something I can really get behind :) I love because of their simple structure and the fact that people easily review stories.Li Li

      TeacherSerenia profile image

      TeacherSerenia 4 years ago

      So out of curiosity - can I ask what your profile name is on FF net and what genre of stories you write, read or favourite? I prefer reading JAG, Stargate SG1 and BATB stories.

      sockii profile image

      sockii 4 years ago from New Jersey Author

      @TeacherSerenia: I'm not on FF.N any longer (I left after the first adult content purge in 2002 on principle). I do have an AO3 account but prefer not to link my fan-writing account to my general on-line ID. I'll send you a private message, however.

      Aja103654 profile image

      Aja103654 3 years ago

      I can't really choose either since I have not checked out AO3 that much. Also, loads of stories in FFnet are crap and it's getting harder and harder to find only the best and well written stories. Plus there's so much slash pairings and Yaoi compared to hetero pairings which I prefer. AO3 looked complicated to me, as well. Thank you so much for this article!

      anonymous 3 years ago

      I use both sites, as a writer and a reader. I will say that there are two features of AO3 that are incredibly important to me. The first is that you can set your own style for the page. This is good for me, as I read primarily at night. Who knew that changing the background to a pale gray or tan would reduce eyestrain and headache? I can honestly say that it did for me.The second (and it is mentioned, but not emphasized in this article) is that the tags allow you to be very specific in what you're looking for. You can search, for instance, for fics that generally include... well, pick a tag - let's use Harry Potter. You can then narrow it by character, relationship, AU (i.e. Independent!Harry), circumstance (i.e. Time Travel).... I can narrow down 12,000+ listings to the 40 or 50 that I actually want to read. And that's just by adding additional tags to the search! On FFN, I'd have to hope that someone made a Community (or make one myself) in order to have a good list of similar story types.And, by the way, there is an easy way to search for just crossovers. Just pick one fandom (i.e. Harry Potter), and then add a second fandom tag (Fullmetal Alchemist, perhaps?). Thousands of HP stories become 15 HP/FMA crossovers. Further filter by language setting (English), decide I only want complete stories, and we have eleven. Easy!

      anonymous 3 years ago

      I use both sites pretty regularly. However. While I use most of my reading on, when I want some adult entertainment reading...I go to AO3. And when they did that recent purge, I almost left permanently. At that point I was reading a lot of "Harry Potter Characters read the books" type of deal, and suddenly all my fav authors get their stories taken off. Then I started to notice that most of the NARUTO (most popular anime for fanfics) stories started to go down the drain. Why the heck should I stay on a site the doesn't promote spell-check on a regular basis? At least the "Smut AO3" has great writing in it. While the tags are tricky, when you want a specific story, and you get a page full of awesomeness? Most tags require patience. When you don't have the patience to find a good, well-written story that caters to your ideas...Well then, sorry. While now I use a lot of different sites to find what I am looking for, will always have a spot in my heart. But when all the good stories seem to be LJ? And you want them on your E-book reader? I will always turn to AO3. As most LJ writers seem to post here. Never disregard something just because the "tags are too tuff, i want something simpple." That just leads to badly written stories and a few good ones splattered on. For all you ff fans that disregard AO3 just because of the difficulty of the tags, I beg of you to give it a little patience and some good will. After all, soon, your fandom may be deleted of its best stories and then you have to go to another FORUM to read them, then the forum closes and then you are stuck with no way of getting those great stories.Also, I hate writing reviews. It's a long-drawn out process. Most of the BAD authors want one, but I am someone that can't criticize without making it flamey. Why should I make a flamey review when the author is just going to diregard it? If its a super great story and its not completed and I want to subscribe for updates-then I make a short but sweet statement like "More soon please" or "AWESOME! PWEASE UPDATE!!". Leaving Kudos? Well at first I had no idea what the Kudos was for, but now...Yes. Something I can click that says, "OMGSUPERMEGAFOXYAWESOMEHOT! I LOVE IT! UPDATE MORE STUFF LIKE THIS!" Most authors hate my short reviews. Well sorry, I rather just leave a kudos. RPFing? It took my soul. I (and probably many a fangirl) hoped for a certain actor/tress to be with a certain actor/tress. But for years I had no idea that there were fans that WROTE ABOUT IT. and Posted it. Somewhere. If you say that RPF fics are bad for AO3 then you have certainly never fantasized about an actor/tress. Main thing about this? I will always start with, but sooner or later, I will head and stay in AO3 for days at a time. If you think one is better than the other, then you are living in a fantasy. FANFICS FOR DA WIN!!

      anonymous 3 years ago

      I like many others did use since a young age and would generally only read fic's on that site, but now after finding Archive of Our Own/ AO3 I rarely read works via other than updates from long standing fics. I find AO3 easier to navigate and easier to read from. Personally i also think there is a lot less shit on the site compared to the quantity of crap on I still submit to both websites but I no longer read or search on instead preferring AO3. While some dislike the tagging system on AO3, I much prefer it as it does not stop certain types of fics being easily found, unlike on where it is to generic to search for things such as rape.

      anonymous 3 years ago is older and a lot more popular, so I go on there to post my works. So far, on AO3, the stories I've read are fine grammatically. The adult content on there versus the adult content still stuck on are equally bad.As for reading, I read on both. AO3 is still relatively new so I can't find a lot of stuff on there, but most of what I do find is good enough. As for, there's a significantly greater percentage of bad stories, but the good stories are very good - and simply due to the huge amount of stories on, even a small fraction of the good stories outnumber those on AO3. There's a lot more sifting to do to find them, though. I'm pretty sure that AO3 is just so much cleaner of poorly written fanfiction because a majority of authors (that is, the terrible ones) haven't found it yet. Once it becomes more popular it will clog up just like

      PhilVardy profile image

      PhilVardy 3 years ago

      I love discovering a Realm of the Internet I've never previously heard of!! thanks :)

      anonymous 3 years ago

      I use both sites for reading, writing, and initiating discussions with other authors. My experience has been the opposite of many who have commented here. I do not feel the least bit lost on AO3 and I find it easier to get from one place to another there. I have also received at least ten times the written reviews on AO3 as after being warned by users of both sites that AO3 readers do not review. I love that has private messaging and that Ao3 has automatic downloads. As far as finding quality work, what has worked best for me has been to look at the subscriptions, favorites, and bookmarks of an author I respect. It really grows from there, and it seems a little ridiculous to me to rely as heavily as some folks do on tag searches to find what they want. But that's just me and I get it. I enjoy reading variety within my fandoms. When I go skipping around, Ao3 has the higher proportion of well-written fics.

      Stephanie36 profile image

      Stephanie36 3 years ago from Canada

      Wow, this is quite the impressive lens. There's tons of well researched info on here. I've spent a lot of time on FFnet as a reader and writer, but have only read one story on AO3. It takes an incredible amount of time to truly become familiar with either site outside of just one fandom.

      anonymous 3 years ago

      I've had an account with since 2001 and by 2010 I virtually stopped going there preferring LJ or any place to read fanfiction because of the abundance of complete shit on that site. I stayed on after the original purges for loyalty sake but it just became to much. Some of my favorite authors who actually wrote worthwhile fanfiction were leaving because of the loss of stories (trust me, when they originally did the purges they lost stories that weren't even NC-17 or M rated, wiped some stories of comments completely due to one belligerent review and they're servers were also lagging when they began putting advertising up).When I found AO3 it was a godsend for me because I found authors who had left and new ones. The quality of fanfiction is much higher, I have no problems with the tagging system and adore the the community because a lot of community is connected with Tumblr.The lagging, server issues and adding new content are just AO3 evolving which I am completely comfortable to wait for it be fine tuned while enjoying their content. It will pass like's fine tuning days and as long as AO3 keeps to their mission statement then I will be supporting it over for years to come.

      rebeca-agoiztabuenca 2 years ago

      You can easily dowload any story from AO3, while now in they don't allow you to select and copy the content of every chapter to save the story in Word for your personal use. It's also easier to find the kind of fanfiction you want in AO3, which have many more searching options. And the content of the story can be just as explicit as the reader wish, thus the warnings.Hovewer in you can find a higher amount of stories by far, and the readers are more used to leave reviews for the author. The feedback is better. I believe that a question of time, though. AO3 is booming quickly, and is suffering a slow but decisive decline since the last couple of years.

      PendulumDeath 2 years ago

      I prefer AO3 over FF, and not just because of the adult content, but also because I can read fics even when I'm not connected to the Internet ( you can easily download them ). I read on both sites, but I can't be bothered to post anything on FF because I'd have to censor some parts or completely remove some chapters and that doesn't sit well with me. There are some mature stories that aren't just porn without plot, but if you start removing the key parts of such a fic, then you're simply censoring yourself for the sake of posting it on a site, and that's not something I wish to do. I don't mind the lack of reviews on AO3, especially since the fandom I'm writing for isn't even that big, but the Kudos button is nice, so that's enough. I also find it really hard to edit fics on FF, or maybe I'm doing something wrong, I don'y know, but AO3 is much easier to use and I simply adore the interface.

      Elle 23 months ago

      I think AO3 is better at offering more quality fics, but it's discouraging when you find out just because your fic doesn't have sex & or romance in it, it's just not gonna get near as many hits, kudos & comments. AO3 seems to be at least 80% pure romance & smut. Don't get me wrong, my utterly sexless work on Ao3 has gotten several good reviews & a few real fans & I'm having a blast writing again, but I can't help but be miffed when I see another work about the same characters & plot get hundreds more hits than mine & the only difference being theirs has explicit sex in it while mine doesn't.

      I'm not knocking smut here, I've read it on occasion but my main focus in fandom isn't shipping so being a non-ship writer on AO3 can be a lonely life. I'm now thinking of heading back over to fanfiction & posting my stuff there.

      Mimi 19 months ago is good for stories based on anime/manga/movies/books.

      AO3 is good for stories based on lives of real people- bands/actors/and so on...

      There's also wattpad and fictionpress for creative writing with lots of good stories :D

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