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New Interview With The Vampire Show Encourages Fanfic, Anne Rice's Spirit Likely Furious

The AMC show’s official Twitter promoted an app where fans can create their own visual novels—i.e. fanfic

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Lestat and Louis hauling away a body.
Photo: AMC

In a stunning twist of irony, the official Interview with the Vampire account, associated with the new AMC TV series, just revealed a collaboration with a mobile app that empowers fans to “write your own vampire stories” featuring the show’s memorable characters. Which is absolutely incredible. Anne Rice, who wrote the famous 1976 novel the show is based on, was known as an extremely anti-fanfiction author, and her legal notices against fanfic based on her work are the reason why so much early fic contained the line: “I DO NOT CLAIM TO LEGALLY OWN THE COPYRIGHT PLEASE DO NOT SUE!!!!!!!!”


Dorian: Comics You Play! is a mobile app that hosts visual novels made by community creators. Starting from October 3, fans could use officially licensed assets from AMC’s Interview with the Vampire to create their own visual novels, and would even be compensated with virtual currency for doing so. “Create your adaptation and start sharing it!” urged one Dorian community manager in the app’s official Discord server. “The sooner you publish, the sooner you can start getting reads and getting your game streamed by cosplayers!” She also urged fans to join “write club,” daily writing sessions for their Interview with the Vampire stories.

Now, all of this is giving me immense whiplash. It used to be extremely tenuous to write fanfiction because of Rice. “I do not allow fanfiction. The characters are copyrighted. It upsets me terribly to even think about fan fiction with my characters,” she wrote in 2000. After that, removed its entire category for Rice’s books, and banned any attempts to publish works based on them on the site. Fans have claimed that Rice threatened legal action against them, causing a chilling effect on the fanfiction community at large.


Rice did, in more recent years, seem to cool a bit in her strident objection to fanfic based on her books. In 2012 she said of the matter, “it’s been very easy to avoid reading any, so live and let live. If I were a young writer, I’d want to own my own ideas. But maybe fan fiction is a transitional phase: whatever gets you there, gets you there.” However, Facebook comments of hers suggest that she remained deeply uncomfortable with the idea of such work existing, and that she simply tried not to think about it.

Suffice it to say that Anne Rice, who died last year, would probably be displeased by this turn of events. Not only can you now legally write fanfiction about Lestat and Louis making bedroom eyes at each other, the visual novel app is even asking creators to do so as part of a community. Early teenage me would have been so proud at how far fandom culture has come since the scary copyright infringement days. Fan content on Dorian is monetized by the developers, and fan creators definitely don’t get fair returns on keeping their favorite IP alive. But god, I wish Rice had lived to see fanfic writers create slash content of her beloved vampires.