Authors: Anna Todd,Leigh Ansell,Rachel Aukes,Doeneseya Bates,Scarlett Drake,A. Evansley,Kevin Fanning,Ariana Godoy,Debra Goelz,Bella Higgin,Blair Holden,Kora Huddles,Annelie Lange,E. Latimer,Bryony Leah,Jordan Lynde,Laiza Millan,Peyton Novak,C.M. Peters,Michelle Jo,Dmitri Ragano,Elizabeth A. Seibert,Rebecca Sky,Karim Soliman,Kate J. Squires,Steffanie Tan,Kassandra Tate,Katarina E. Tonks,Marcella Uva,Tango Walker,Bel Watson,Jen Wilde,Ashley Winters
Tags: #Anthologies, #Young Adult, #Contemporary
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For the fans,
and the people who inspire them
. . .
mag • ines
a type of fanfiction in which the reader is included in the story as the protagonist.
Fanfiction gives us a place to express ourselves in creative and familiar ways with like-minded people. Fanfiction has inspired millions of readers and writers around the world, and I’m so proud to be a part of such an amazing community.
im Kardashian just posted a selfie, and your boyfriend is furious about it.
You were midconversation when his mood suddenly changed. Or, really, you were just about to be midconversation. You were gearing up to start the conversation. And now Kim’s selfie has ruined everything.
Your boyfriend had just gotten home from his very difficult and stressful job as a government agent, and it’s one of your rare nights off from your job at Best Buy. You’ve been hinting to him that maybe it would be nice to go out. He hasn’t taken you out on a date, an actual date, in a while. You’ve been together for a while, and it’s starting to feel comfortable. In the good way . . . but also kind of in the not-100-percent-good way. You don’t know how to have the conversation with him exactly, but you’re starting to feel, slightly, like he’s taking you for granted. Not that you don’t still love him! You definitely do. And you are positive that he loves you. You hate that you feel like you even need to have this conversation with him. You know his job is very stressful. Probably
everything is just fine between you and you’re making up problems in your head.
But also: you’re kind of dying inside about another night of doing nothing, just falling asleep on his shoulder in front of the TV. You don’t want to feel bored, but, more than that, you don’t want him to think you’re boring. But you do feel bored, frustrated, overwhelmed on a level that maybe isn’t just about him. But you’re not ready to think about that yet.
You have resolved to bring up the topic. You say, gently, curiously, nonjudgmentally, “So do you want to do anything tonight?”
A very easy and blameless entryway into the conversation. Just putting the topic out there.
He’s looking at his phone, probably going through work emails even though he just left work. He’s obsessed. Not obsessed: driven. Highly focused. It’s a thing you like about him. But you ask the question and it looks like you have his attention, like he’s about to put his phone away and look at you,
look at you, and have this conversation with you, but then he swipes something on his phone and sees something that immediately changes his entire demeanor. A chill descends all around you. His grip on his phone tightens; his knuckles go white. He’s no longer looking at his phone but through it, at some distant object that has suddenly come into focus.
He’s no longer there in the room with you. You’re suddenly looking at him from very far away. And you know, immediately, that no way is he taking you out on a date tonight.
“What is it?” you ask. “What’s wrong?”
Your boyfriend inhales deeply. Something flutters just below the skin of his jaw. Finally he closes his eyes and turns his phone screen over.
“She posted. Another. Selfie,” he says, viciously spitting out each syllable.
And you know exactly who he means. There could only be one person he’s referring to, because there’s only one woman who ever posts selfies anymore. There’s only one woman who dares to.
You reach out to take the phone from your boyfriend. You want to see for yourself. You know you shouldn’t, but it’s like a car crash, a thing that you feel the need to witness, to experience firsthand.
You slip the phone from your boyfriend’s hand, but then his distraction breaks and he comes back to life. “Wait, no, you shouldn’t see it!” he says, worried.
And you know he’s right, but you look anyway.
Kim Kardashian has posted a selfie. She stares at the camera, at you, confidently, boldly, almost happily. Her makeup is perfectly applied, her skin so glossy it’s as if she’s lit from within. Her hair is sleek and black and shiny, like a cat disappearing into the night. Her lips are slightly parted and she’s only barely smiling, but there’s something in her eyes that tells you she is genuinely having fun. That she’s enjoying this.
The caption below reads:
My sincere apologies to my haters for this perfect selfie! There is no law against loving yourself!
Looking at the picture, you feel something inside you. Something frantic and wild, clawing at the walls of a tiny chamber somewhere deep inside your heart. This selfie of Kim’s is going to ruin your boyfriend’s night, and by extension your night. The aching, the tiny panic inside your heart. It must be anger. At this woman who is acting in a way she shouldn’t. In a way that impacts you. Right? What else could it be?
You hand the phone back to your boyfriend. He’s eyeing you closely, waiting to see your reaction.
“Why does she keep doing this?” you ask. “She knows that selfies are illegal.”
“I don’t know,” your boyfriend says. Then louder, beyond frustrated: “I don’t know!” He turns away. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t let it get to me. I shouldn’t let you see. I just wish there was more I could do.”
“But you’re already doing so much,” you say, rubbing his shoulder, kneading the solid knot of tension in his muscles. “You’re one of the government’s top agents. You’ve already captured so many notorious celebrity selfie-takers. Lindsay Lohan, Rihanna, Willow Smith, Chrissy Teigen, Ariana Grande—all locked up because of
“It’s not enough,” he says, staring off into the distance. “Until we catch Kim Kardashian, it’s not enough.”
“You’ll catch her,” you say. You hear the words and can almost see them floating up like strange bubbles out of your mouth. Do you believe them? It doesn’t matter. What matters is comforting your boyfriend. What matters is how he feels.
“She’s the most wanted criminal in the country,” you add. “You’ll catch her eventually.”
The sun is setting outside. The sky is going slightly gray, the same color as your boyfriend’s eyes. You were hoping to see a movie tonight. There’s a new Matt Damon movie, about a man who has to overcome certain obstacles. It’s supposed to be very good. They say it’s going to win awards.
It’s fine. You need to be taking care of your boyfriend, anyway. This is where you need to be.
and particularly the men in charge of the government, felt that people were spending too much time looking at their phones, too much time taking pictures of themselves, too much time thinking about how they looked. They said it was weird and unhealthy for people to be constantly taking and posting
pictures of themselves. They said it reflected poorly on us as a nation. They said it was a hazard, a safety issue. They said we should be focusing on other, more important things. They did not mention specifically what the more important things might be.
The government had already made so many decisions about what women could or couldn’t do with their bodies that in the end this was just one more thing. The act that made selfies illegal didn’t even have its own bill—it was just a line item tacked onto a longer bill that took away various other rights.
Certainly the law was not written in a gender-specific way, but it really only affected women. Men had never been good at selfies, anyway. What did they care if they were illegal? Frankly, it was a relief: one less thing for men to be terrible at.
At first, women kept taking selfies. No one believed the law could really be a
law. Was this really something they were going to enforce? But then front-facing cameras in phones were banned. Cars need to meet certain safety requirements in order to be safe for use by the public, the government said; so too phones. Front-facing cameras were too much of a threat. They encouraged people to look inward rather than outward, which was bad.
Then the government task force was formed, and they began going after the most egregiously selfie-taking celebrities, rounding them up and putting them in jail.