So I got busy with other things and missed the exact date, but as of last Sunday, April 19th, I've been in fandom for 10 years.
I'd done other things one might describe as fannish before, and of course I've been a fan of things for much longer than that -- my whole life, really. But I date my active participation in fandom to the posting of my first fanfic, which went up on fanfiction.net on April 19th, 2005. I'd been working on it for months, along with the second story I ever posted (the first chapter of that went up a week or so later), and I hemmed and hawed about posting it at all, but I decided it was worth throwing it up there to see what happened. And fandom happened. It took a couple of months, but by the summer I had a few regular readers, and then I met kunstarniki
and the rest is history
When I posted about this anniversary on Tumblr
a bit ago, when it was still upcoming, I noted that ten years isn't that long to be in fandom, really -- I know many people who've been involved much longer, and people who came to it far younger. But it's still a good chunk of time, and it's changed my life so much. It wouldn't be entirely wrong to divide my life up into "before fandom" and "after fandom". And although fandom comes with its ups and downs, I can't imagine giving it up. It's brought me the creative outlet I always needed, and I've met so many fantastic people -- including some of the best friends I've ever had.
I thought about doing something grand for the anniversary, but I ran out of both time and ideas, so this brief meander was the best I could do. Thank you, all of you, for being a part of this grand experience. Here's to ten years and ten more, and another ten after that.