Let me also add that I loathe fanfiction that takes itself too seriously. Honestly, if you're writing video game fanfiction, you are writing video game fanfiction. What you are doing is not akin to writing Ulysses. It's something you're doing because you enjoy it, and want other fans to enjoy it. That's cool (and I certainly enjoy fanfiction), but sometimes you can almost tell that the author is convinced of his/her genius, and it's off putting. The same goes for flowery language. It's distracting, rarely used even in great literature and...yeah, you're still writing video game fanfiction even in a best case scenario.
From this discussion.
That point of view infuriates me. Yes, fanfiction is a hobby. No, fanfiction is not professional. But transformative works are just as valid as totally original works, in my opinion, and some stories can use other stories to make beautiful, amazing points.
Probably the most amazing piece of fiction I have ever, ever read, that I love more than anything Diana Wynne Jones or Neil Gaiman or Guy Gavriel Kay or Glen Cook ever wrote was a piece of fanfiction.
It's called "Scheherazade". It is an exploration of stories, of the Final Fantasy series and its related works, of why we tell stories, of who we are in the dark, of who our enemies are. And it is probably the single most mind-blowing piece of fiction I have ever seen.
Or how about "Concession", an Iron Man AU about being unable to take concessions back, about disappearances, about abuse and isolation and journalism. It's a powerful piece, made moreso by use of names I knew and a story I'd seen.
You want chick lit? I can give you chick lit. The House of Amanda. The story of how Amanda Grayson assembled a household and raised a hybrid son in the Star Trek XI continuity. Again: a powerful story about motherhood, family, and marriage, and growing old together -- made more powerful by using familiar faces and a story whose end we already know.
How about horror? You want to try some horror on for size? I can do that. "Fatherhood". It's a BioShock fanfic about the process of becoming a Big Daddy. It's horrifying and painful, works primarily on original characters and IIRC is Jossed by BioShock 2. That doesn't lessen its effect: you don't have to be familiar with BioShock to be affected by the fragmented chronology or the sinking horror, but damned if that doesn't make it more effective.
You read these fics. You let "Scheherazade" shake you, let "Concessions" chill you, let "The House of Amanda" warm your heart and "Fatherhood" make you sick. Then you tell me that they aren't transformative works. That they aren't art.
I don't think you can.