In your own space, share your love for something fannish: a trope, cliché, kink, motif, theme, format, or fandom.
The hardest thing about this challenge is picking one thing to squee about, for I am FoMS, Fan of Many Squees. This should not be confused with Fan of Mary Sue. ^_^
I’ve talked about a lot of my kinks over the years, but I’m not sure I’ve talked much about noncon / dubcon, so that’s the trope I’ll tackle here.
Now, before delving into things, I feel compelled to point out that I have very different guidelines for what is acceptable in fiction (which doesn’t and shouldn’t operate under the same strictures as real life) and, well, real life. Writing torture and torment in fiction gives me glee. Watching Cenobites who have been summoned from Lemarchand’s Box eviscerate humans foolish enough to summon them gives me glee. Seeing real people physically hurt by other real people makes me angry and heartsick. It makes me cry. So art and real life are different moral worlds for me.
I find dubcon fics so compelling because the psychological underpinnings of them fascinate me. I like the conflict inherent in having a character who wants things in his secret heart, but he’s kept from them because he thinks they’re futile or infantile or just plain wrong. One of the most interesting conflicts you can set up in fiction is to have a character who would never, ever, ever do X and maneuvering him into a position where he has to do it. In dubcon, he has to do it, and he enjoys it or might come. Dubcon is about embracing the forbidden, and that’s powerful stuff. How does that change the character? How does it impact his character and his relationships with other characters? I like watching things ripple out from that one event into the bigger story.
Even in fics that might be short, just the scene itself, we’re familiar with the source text the fic is based on and we propagate those ripples into our own headcanons.
Noncon is more fraught as a genre, because that turn, that acceptance/embrace, never happens. There is no relief, no letting off of the pressure. There’s no comfort, no solace. Noncon fics are (and should be) dark. They take characters and readers to terrible places, and the former leave broken in some way—if they leave at all.
Then why do I enjoy them? Well, I like horror. I like being put on edge and disturbed. But I also believe that characters are all defined by their light and dark selves. Like us, they have both. The more powerfully someone is touched by the dark, the more heroic their climb back to the light. I like hurting my darlings and seeing what that pain does to them. How it pushed them. How they ultimately overcome or succumb to it.