Elizabeth Minkel & Flourish Klink
Fansplaining is a podcast about by, for, and about fandom. It’s hosted by Flourish Klink and Elizabeth Minkel. New episodes come out every two weeks. If you want to call us and leave a message for us to read on air, our number is 1-401-526-FANS!
The Yellow Balloon Movement by Maria Temming
Our first piece in this new era of Fansplaining is "The Yellow Balloon Movement" by Maria Temming: Within jam band fandoms often dominated by substance use, clean and sober fans are building their own communities. You can read the full article here:  Hi, Fansplaning listeners, Elizabeth here. So everyone probably knows by now that the podcast is on hiatus. And you may be wondering why is this still showing up in my feed?Thanks for not unsubscribing, because I would say with 95% certainty, the podcast will be back in some form before too long.   But this is showing up in your feed because, as you may recall, in the hiatus portion of the podcast itself, I'm going to be ramping up our publication arm, which we've, you know, kind of periodically added to over the years. Now, there's going to be at least one new piece per month, and we had a listener when I announced this suggest that we also do audio versions. And so everyone who's writing one of these stories also knows they have to record themselves, reading it and then we'll put it up alongside the text.    And so I thought, well, you know, for folks who do like listening, why not use this feed to share the audio with them? You can also find it with the article itself on, and if you listen to this and enjoy it I would really appreciate if you go back there and maybe share it with folks, whether they like listening or reading.   So that's all to say,I thought I would just, for this one, explain what I was doing, but rather than just dropping the audio into your feet with no, with no warning. So I won't have a big introduction for, for all of them, but for this one, because it was showing up again after a few weeks, I wanted to explain why something new was showing up in your feet.   So without further ado, the first article in this new era of Fanplaining that I am thrilled to publish is actually a repeat contributor. It's by Maria Temming who was the author of "The Pain Fandom," the article we published on whump. She also came on the podcast to talk about that article.   And importantly, she has been one of our two transcriptionists for the past few years. Extraordinary transcriptionist, incredibly meticulous, and she brings that meticulousness to her journalism. The whump story was extremely deeply and thoughtfully reported, and this story is no different. It's about yellow balloon groups. They are clean and sober fans who basically have meetings, like AA-style meetings, right within the concerts they're attending. So it's like creating fandoms within fandoms, and huge, you know, diversity range of ages and experiences of the folks that she talked to for this.   And so it was a real pleasure to edit and to learn about this, like this corner of fandom. And so I really hope you enjoy it. So without further ado, here's Maria Temming.  
Jun 12
23 min
Episode 223: The End of the Flourish Era
After nine years of collaborating on Fansplaining, Flourish and Elizabeth mark Flourish’s final regular episode by casting back to the state of fandom when they first met on a panel at San Diego Comic-Con in July of 2015. A decade ago, we were at the height of Hollywood’s “Geek is Chic” arc, facing the rapid mainstreaming of fandom and the beginnings of the “creator-ification” of fanworks. What’s changed for the better—and what’s gotten worse? Plus: in the ultimate ironic twist, Flourish accepts their own personal journey into lurkerdom, a truly fitting end to a podcast run that nearly ended during a fight on the subject 215 episodes ago… 🥰
May 22
1 hr 20 min
Episode 222: Ask Fansplaining Anything: Part 19
Flourish’s final “Ask Fansplaining Anything” episode follows the format of the previous 18 (!!), with a new batch of (thoughtful as ever!) listener letters and voicemails. Topics discussed include people bringing a prior adaptation’s fandom baggage to a new version, writing RPF about people who aren’t actually famous at all, the tropification of fanfiction, and whether multiple versions of a character can feel true simultaneously.
May 8
1 hr 16 min
Episode 221: Self-Inserts
On Episode 221, “Self-Inserts,” Elizabeth and Flourish welcome fan studies scholar Effie Sapuridis to talk about the wide world of self-inserts, including Y/N and x reader fic, imagines, shifting, and classic Mary Sues. Topics discussed include differences between platforms, including AO3, Wattpad, Tumblr, and especially TikTok; ties to things like roleplaying, LARPing, and theme parks; and whether self-insert forms are leading us towards a future of ~personalized AI storytelling~. Plus: they talk about why there’s so little academic work on self-inserts, and the ethical issues around continuing to study the Harry Potter fandom.
Apr 24
1 hr 18 min
Episode 220: The Fan-Journalist
On Episode 220, “The Fan-Journalist,” Flourish and Elizabeth welcome one particular fan-journalist—Kayti Burt—to discuss her recent article for us on the specific challenges of covering things you love in a very precarious industry. Topics discussed include Kayti’s journey from youthful fandom to pop culture reporting, a step-by-step rundown of how an article goes from idea to finished product, and the many ethical questions journalists have to weigh when writing about fans or their objects of fandom.
Apr 10
1 hr 17 min
Episode 219: Tropefest Speedrun
Episode 219, “Tropefest Speedrun,” kicks off with a big announcement: as you might have guessed with Flourish a few months away from a) giving birth and b) being ordained as a priest, they are going to be leaving Fansplaining in May. Post-Flourish plans for the podcast still TBD, this episode builds off the long-running “Tropefest” series for Patrons and jets through ten fanfiction tropes and themes in an hour, including classics like time loops, identity porn, truth serum, and sex pollen. 
Mar 27
1 hr 9 min
Episode 218: The Money Question 3: Books???
Following previous installments on the thorny intersections of money and fanfiction, Episode 218, “The Money Question 3: Books???” tackles the recent debacle around people illegally selling bound copies of others’ fic, which has mostly centered on mega-popular Dramione works. Jumping off from Elizabeth’s WIRED article on the subject—which ties the practice to the current pull-to-publish wave as well as the Twilight fan-run presses of the early 2010s—Elizabeth and Flourish discuss the context collapse when a fic “breaches containment,” double standards in attitudes towards money and various fan practices, and, for likely the 1,000th time on this podcast, what exactly “fair use” means.
Mar 13
1 hr 25 min
Episode 217: Fanbinding
On Episode 217, “Fanbinding,” Elizabeth and Flourish talk to Tiffo (aka Fanboundbooks) about the art of turning fanfiction into physical books, and the fanbinding collective known as the Renegade Bindery. Topics discussed include how exactly you make a book, Renegade’s origin story and huge growth in recent years, fanbinders’ firm commitment to the non-monetized gift economy, and Binderary, a month-long event this February with challenges, fan-run classes, and more. Plus! (Spoiler) Flourish literally joins the Renegade Discord during the recording session.
Feb 28
1 hr 14 min
Episode 216: Allegra Rosenberg
On Episode 216, “Allegra Rosenberg,” Elizabeth and Flourish talk to the fandom journalist and Terror Camp organizer about her journey from tween fan reporter to writing a book about the pre-digital history of fan culture. Topics discussed include coming of age on Tumblr, learning to put on IRL events while deep in music fandom, getting that fannish feeling from immersive theater, and, of course, Terror Camp, a fandom-academia hybrid event that celebrates fans’ investment in historical research.
Feb 14
1 hr 11 min
Episode 215: The Broken Contract
In Episode 215, “The Broken Contract,” Flourish and Elizabeth look at the sorry state of television in 2024, where the streaming revolution has devolved into sudden cancellations, deleted or shelved shows, opaque viewer numbers, and very little stability for audiences—and especially fans—to get invested in something new. How can fans build fandoms—and, for that matter, how can TV creators build the works themselves—when executives are constantly pulling the rug out from under them? Plus: they respond to a pair of letters about the previous episode, on AI and dealing with a negative AO3 comment, respectively.
Jan 31
1 hr 12 min
Load more