Back in November or so of 2017, someone turned us on to an event called TGI Femslash. Billed as ‘a gal pals convention,’ it was originally known as FaberryCon, a celebration of (believe it or not) Glee! FaberryCon had five events (from 2013 to 2016) but morphed into TGIF/F, where all femslash ships could be cherished.
F/F is a term popularized by fan fiction circles, and simply means a ‘female/female’ relationship (or ‘ship’) pairing. The term is believed to have originated in Star Trek fandom circles. Boo and I reminisced over the smell of purple mimeographed clandestine fanfic, usually about Kirk and Spock, or Kirk/Spock. You see the slash?
Since ‘Slash Fic’ used to mean M/M fic only (i.e. male/male), the term femslash arose to distinguish those who loved to read about the ladies.
Let’s be honest here. Most of us have read at least one F/F fic. Maybe it was Xena/Gabrielle, sneaking in a read on Netscape in the back of the computer lab. Maybe it was OitNB. But a lot of people do read and enjoy fan fiction, because it tells stories they can’t find in ‘conventional’ media.
TGI Femslash is a three day convention all about, well, femslash relationships. But it’s more than just a group of queers sitting around and talking about their favorite fanfics. The convention was broken into ‘panels,’ loosely moderated conversations about certain topics, ranging from TV shows and movies to intersectionality and social media.
Besides that, there were open discussions (aka DIY talks) where we quibbled over comics, or the complexities of suggestions versus confirmations. We all had so much in common, and yet so much different, all because we liked some of the same things.
Finally there were the events. A costume contest (two people went as Doc Holliday), a vidshow where we watched fan-vids of some of our favorite shows, Club Femslah where we dressed up and danced, a live auction, and an open mic night! Yes, I took a break to play a fun D&D game. Ask me about my Dwarf Cleric’s name, why don’t you.
Whew! It was three jam-packed days of wall to wall femslash, where me liking TV shows (and comics and books) about women who love women was normal.
Would I go again? Absolutely.
It was fun, I got the chance to speak to a lot of people and meet some of our Twitter followers in person. Which was hella cool. More cool were the conversations. I talked to people about everything from being old in fandom (mimeographed fanfic anyone?) to racism and staying in my own lane. I got more ideas about how people were looking for content, and what we could do to help them find it.
While there certainly was a division of the people who had been there ‘a long time’ and the ‘newbies,’ I found it no more so than any event. They were welcoming, friendly, entertaining, and above all, gosh darn nice. Since I know they met their fundraising goals for 2019, I expect to see them at the same bat time and hotel.