Classifications & Definitions
DEFINITIONS: UNDERSTANDING THE CATEGORIES, RATINGS, WARNINGS & GENRES
(or HOW TO BEST CHOOSE CLASSIFICATIONS FOR YOUR STORIES)

CATEGORIES & SUB-CATEGORIES

PAIRINGS: Romance by pairing, PWPs, Slash & femslash

* Popular Pairings (Max/Alec, Max/Logan)
* Other Pairings (Alec/Other, Max/Zack, Max/Ben, Max/Other, Max/White, Other Het)
* PWP (any porn without plot het pairing)
* Slash & Femslash

GENERAL AND NON-SHIPPER: General fiction, friendship and fun. Fics that do not involve romantic entanglements. Also includes Eyes Only related and/or E.O. centric fics.

MANTICORE AND PRE-SERIES Manticore centric and/or pre-S1 fiction.
* Manticore Centric
* Pre-Series Fiction

09ER FICTION: Stories focusing on the 09 escapees, or Ben centric fiction. May also include resurrection fics (revival of the dearly departed!)
* 09er Fiction
* Ben Centric

FAMILIAR TERRITORY: White centric & Cult fiction.
* White Centric
* Cult Classics

TERMINAL CITY AND POST-SERIES: Fiction based in or around Terminal City or a post-S2 setting.

CROSSOVERS: Stories that combine elements of Dark Angel with other fandoms.

* DA/SN
* DA/BtVS
* DA/Other

RH CHALLENGES: Stories written in response to the RH issued special challenges here on RH (and E2RH).


RATINGS

G Good clean fun for all ages

PG Mild implied sexual innuendo, mild bad words, violence or serious (though not quite mature) topics

PG13 Some violence, bad language, obvious sexual innuendo, implied sexual relations. Also may include some mature topics such as suicide, homosexuality, drug/alcohol advocacy, rape aftermath, details of childbirth, etc. depending on the mores of the fandom involved

R Just short of explicit sex, graphic torture or violence, rape. Not recommended for minors

NC17 Explicit erotica, excessively gory violence. Illegal for underage readers


WARNINGS

Abuse to treat in a harmful, injurious, or offensive way

BDSM Bondage, domination, sadomasochism

Character Death When one of the minor or major characters in your story is killed off

Coarse Language Use of extreme vulgarity, graphic insults, or explicit sexual references, that would not be suitable for young or general audiences

Dark A story involving a large amount of death/pain/trauma being inflicted on the characters, often to force out characterization

Dubious Consent Consent that is given under suspicious circumstances, or manipulation

Extreme Violence The use hardcore physical force. This classification is for very graphic descriptions of brutality, torture, abuse and death. Descriptions intended only for adult or mature audiences. Stories with an Extreme Violence classification must be rated "NC17"

Femslash/Slash A type of fic, often written by women, involving romantic or sexual involvement between two characters of the same gender. Slash is for male/male and femslash for female/female Slash/Femslash

Graphic Violence Details the use of physical force, particularly vivid and realistic acts of brutality that result in sever injury or even death. Descriptions usually intended for teen audiences. Stories with Graphic Violence classification should be rated "R".

Lemon/Lime Lemon is used for explicit sex stories, Lime for stories with sexual themes that aren't necessarily explicit

N/C or Non-Con Non-consensual sexual intercourse, aka rape

OOC Meaning out of character

Self-Mutilation Deliberately injuring or disfiguring oneself

SoloF/SoloM Masturbation with either female or male characters

Substance Abuse Excessive use of alcohol, drugs or other addictive substance

Torture The act of inflicting excruciating pain, as punishment or revenge, as a means of getting a confession or information, or for sheer cruelty

UST Unresolved sexual tension. A term for perceived "chemistry" between characters who are not romantically involved in canon or are prevented from pursuing the possibility by circumstances

Violence The use of Physical force exerted for the purpose of violating, damaging, or abusing, though not necessarily fatal. Descriptions intended mostly for general audiences


STORY TYPES

Challenge Fic/Response A story that fulfills some or all of the requirements set forth in the initial challenge

Drabble (Set by the Birmingham University SF Society as thus:) a self contained vignette of exactly 100 words, no more, no less, with up to 15 more words are allowed for the title. Hyphenated words are in dispute

Epic A long narrative poem (or story) recounting actions, travels, adventures, and heroic episodes and written in a high style

Ficlet Term commonly used for stories under approximately 1000 words

Novel (Novella/Novelette) Can describe a story between 20,000 and 40,000 words

OneShot (Standalone) A OneShot is a complete story that is told all in one part without having chapters.

Poetry Story prose of spirit or feeling, usually made adhering to a structured style of writing

Songfic A story based entirely around the lyrics of a song

Vignette A short story of rarely more than two pages, that focuses on a single moment, brief period of time, single subject (event, relationship, emotion, etc.) and often only a single character. Rarely action oriented, vignettes are usually involve a character's internal dialogue as they muse over something that's already happened, debate something yet to be faced, or simply "enjoy the moment." By necessity, drabbles are always vignettes


GENRES

Action/Adventure Filled with physical conflict, with focus on describing movements particularly in battle or competition. Adventure: Characters going on a bold and uncertain quest, leaving behind the safety and comforts of home

Alternate Universe Taking the characters from the original setting of their world, and placing them into one that works a little differently

Angst Refers to the emotional wounds suffered and/or borne by a character, especially if they spend pages moaning about their miserable life in great detail. Can add intensity to a story or turn it into one big long pity party. Warning: angst can be addictive!

Apocalyptic/Post-Apocalyptic Set during or after worldwide disaster with humanity clinging to existence.

Crossover A story which straddles two different fandoms. Can be as close mixing characters from different universes within a genre (ie. Batman/Wolverine) or as wildly disparate as you can imagine (ie. Buffy/Teletubbies not recommended! :P)

Drama Focus on conflicting elements to bring forth a stronger imagery, particularly in use of generating emotional reaction through demonstration of contrasts

Friendship Stories in which couples or characters are just friends, or grow to be friends

Fluff Stories devoid of angst that are light hearted and romantic

General Denotes a story suitable for all ages and mores, containing no sexual overtones

Horror Designed to frighten and/or sicken the reader. Often filled with blood and gore using an enemy who commits inhuman acts of violence

Humour Written with the intent to make the readers laugh

Mystery Characters and the readers work to figure out why something had happened

Parody A literary or artistic work that imitates the characteristic style of an author or a work for comic effect or ridicule.

PWP Porn without plot, or r16;Plot? What plot?' A story which was written purely for the sake of creating pointless sexual escapades

Romance Idealization of love and the attraction of the heart

Suspence Leaving the reader uncertain and anxious as to how events unfold. 'Does the character get attacked? Will he live?'

Tragedy A story in which one or more characters dies, or suffers emotionally

WAFF "Warm and fuzzy feeling" This term describes any cute sappy pointless fic, sometime but not always involving g rated romance.