I'm Ene. I'm mostly involved in the HP fandom, although I've been known to experiment in LotR and X-Men. I'd like to think of myself as unsquickable (and hey, that might be a discussion later about the nature of "squick" and where we draw our proverbial lines). I write drabbles, and ponce around with a bit of art, and RP.
Anyway, my question stems from the notion of authenticity. I, myself, wasn't involved in the Harry Potter fandom until after the first movie came out. I'd read the first book, and it wasn't compelling enough for me to keep reading. However, now I'm downright obsessed.
So, my question is: What makes a "true" fan? What is the essence of being a fan? This question includes the driving forces behind being compelled to create works of art, writing, music, RP, et al. Also, why is it valuable to some to be able to say they were "in on it from the beginning"? And, still more, why are some people turned off by the idea of a fandom because it's popular? Is this valid?