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6 Reasons Everyone Needs To Be In An Internet Fandom

Remember that quirky girl in high school who would never shut up about Harry Potter? I was that girl, and those girls are called fangirls. Fangirls (and fanboys) belong to fandoms, which are exactly what they sound like, kingdoms of fans. This "Harry Potter freak" wants to show you, from her point of view, why fandoms are the greatest things on the Internet.

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1. An escape from reality.

Your life is a mess. It's cluttered with tedious work, irritating colleagues, a jerk boss, etc. After dealing with all that, wouldn't it be nice if you could escape to a magical, fictional universe packed with awesome (and fictional) friends? Well, you can, without any negative effects.

2. It's not weird or unhealthy.

"Escaping to a magical, fictional universe" might not sound like it's good for your mental health. But is it really better than getting wasted with your friends every night, or killing your brain cells by playing FarmVille or watching garbage reality TV? Fandoms are one of the healthier ways to escape from stress.

3. Fanfiction.

Fanfiction isn't for everyone, but it's arguably the most fun part of being in a fandom. Reading it is entertaining, and writing it is a great way to blossom creativity and develop writing skills. Fanfiction is how I first discovered my love for writing, and it led to me writing articles and even my own original stories.

4. The friends you'll make.

I've made great friends through Tumblr, Facebook fandom groups, WattPad, and Fanfiction.net. We give each other feedback on our writing, we play fun shipping games, and even just talk about our lives and cheer our fandom friends up when they're feeling down. I've found that people in fandoms are often kinder and more accepting than people I know in real life.

5. What you'll learn.

Okay, I know this one is cheesy, but it's true. Everything I've ever watched or read has had a profound influence on me. I've learned to always be accepting, always value friendships, and I've learned about man's lust for power. My favorite characters have been like real friends to me, and have inspired me to be kind, to stay positive and to love myself and others.

6. We're not the people you think we are.

People in fandoms are stereotyped as friendless nerds. A) They're actually really cool people; they're kind, thoughtful, and can be hilarious, and B) I'd rather hang out with a friendless nerd than a judgmental douchebag any day.

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