Ship: from the Urban Dictionary.
N: Short for romantic relationship, popularized in fanfiction circles.
V: To endorse a romantic relationship.
N: I see a ‘ship developing between Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley.
V: I ship Ron/Hermione
It was last year when I found out what ‘shipping’ is and I immediately thought it was crazy. LJ Smith was fired from her Vampire Diaries series because she wanted to write Elana with Damon but the ‘shippers’ demanded Stefan (thanks shippers). I thought how silly shipping is. Then I realized I do it too, just not at the fan fiction – fan site level.
Books I have shipped (had an opinion on who I wanted the protag to be with)
-The Vampire Diaries
-The Hunger Games
Spoilers for above mentioned series are next.
And in ALL these cases (except Nightshade it’s ongoing) my shipping has been for naught. Peeta got Katniss, Dimitri is with Rose, Stefan will keep Elana (thanks again shippers), and I hold little hope that Ren will be with Cala. So either I suck at this shipping thing or I don’t know / don’t want to know how to influence publishers and authors to write my ship.
Which brings me to the real point of this post. Some publishers pay close attention to the fandom and who people are shipping (I’m looking at you Harper) and want the books written to satisfy this fandom. I don’t think I can roll with that, and if I was an author I would go the LJ Smith way and say eff that shit. I would not want my story (in LJ’s case the story she was hired to write) to be influenced by fandom.
So when I asked around I got some surprising answers from publicists, reps, fandom boys and girls. I didn’t ask any authors though, but the really crazy thing in all of this is that they agree the story should be written for the fans. Than an indulgent to one’s self writer should have little to do with the direction of the love story once big ships have been formed. I call shenanigans. Can you imagine Juliet picking Paris because Elizabethan shippers told Shakespeare that Romeo wasn’t the guy for her? Paris had it all ladies, looks, wealth, fame and a stable home; he was the equivalent of an Elizabethan catch.
So my question to you is, do you ship? What effect do you want/think shipping should have on the industry?