I’ve been using Fandom.com (formerly known as Wikia.com) to help me in my reading and writing endeavors. Fandom is a wiki hosting service which hosts wikis on entertainment and pop culture, such as books, games, movies, television and more.
I find Fandom helpful in my reading in several ways. First, if I’ve been reading a science fiction or fantasy novel and it’s been a while since I’ve picked up, then I can read chapter summaries to remind me what has happened. Also, Fandom includes character descriptions which help me keep track of who is whom, especially for book series with large casts. Finally, Fandom helps me review a chapter I may have just read to help me understand what just happened in case I get confused. Fandom can help me with my reading in other ways, but mainly I use it for these reasons. I’ve started Brandon Sanderson’s The Way of Kings, and it’s been extremely helpful in understanding the cast of characters and the backdrop of the story. Here’s the Fandom wiki for it.
I also find Fandom helpful being in my writing. Creating a wiki for a science fiction or fantasy novel is a great way to create a story bible. It can help me keep track and develop characters, plot and summarize scenes and chapters, and expand on worldbuilding. While I may not build a wiki through Fandom for my own stories, I can use its organizational structure as a template for my own stories.
In the meantime, this is how I use Fandom:
- Pick novel series (most of the time it will be speculative fiction) and do a search for the novel or novel series title followed by Fandom. (For example: Way of Kings Fandom)
- Most likely, if a wiki exists for it, links will show up taking you to the Fandom wiki for that book.
- You can explore the wiki for that novel or novel series to help you decide if you want to start reading it or to review a book you read in the past so you can move on to the next one.
- A reader or writer can use Fandom.com in many ways.
I am currently reading Dragonquest by the late, great Anne McCaffrey. It’s much more complicated than Dragonflight, her first book in the Dragonriders of Pern series. I’m finding all her dozens of characters and complicated story a little overwhelming, but I took ten minutes to read the summary of the book up to where I stopped, and now I understand more clearly what’s going on. As I mentioned, earlier, I’m reading Sanderson’s Way of Kings. After I read (or, in this case, listen to) each chapter, I review in the The Way of Kings Fandom wiki, and I find I’m probably enjoying the story much more than if I didn’t do this.