Over the last two decades, a substantial amount of research has addressed the fan culture phenomenon, particularly in relation to film and television; the focus has centred on the impact that fan communities can and have had on the ‘official’ creative works that are released by film and television studios. More recently, researchers have examined the impact that the internet has played in empowering and expanding the fan network and fan communication structures, and in affecting the production, marketing and audience engagement with the fan object.
Games are now central objects of study within Fan Studies, yet to date there has been only isolated consideration of gaming’s long history of fandom, and fans’ important roles in game history and preservation. Little academic writing has focused on the impact and centrality that fan communities play — as a collective intelligence, as a pool of individual creators of games, and as interested and engaged parties in the collecting and remembering of game history.
For this anthology we seek essays that address issues that come out of the various possible configurations of the terms: fans, games, and history. We invite proposals for chapters addressing one of three broad axes:
• Historicising game fandom
• Fan contributions to game history
• Methodological reflections on studying historic game fandom
We invite abstracts of 500 words that address the relationship between game fans and history. Possible themes and issues may include but are not limited to:
• Fan communities and the preservation of games • Online communities and gamer memories • Digital fandom before the internet • Nostalgia and history • Historicising fans’ creative output • Magazines and fanzines as sources • how to ‘do’ fan history • Fans as authors of game history
Please send an abstract and brief bio to the editors by 30th April, 2015. Full papers to be submitted by 30th August 2015.
Editors – Melanie Swalwell, Angela Ndalianis, Helen Stuckey