From an interview with Sean Williams in the June 2004 issue of Locus, on what it was like to write several novels in the Star Wars universe:
"Writing in that franchise required a big conceptual leap. Lucas Licensing sent out numerous encyclopedias and the CD-ROMs and so forth, and I was thinking, 'Oh yeah, I've seen the movies x-billion times, I liked them when I was a kid, I've read some of the novels. I know there's a shit load of other stuff, but that's OK. I can make it up as I go along.' Then I hit the first page and had to describe a particular planet, and realized I didn't know the names of any of the cities on the planet, how many races lived there, what language they spoke, whether any of the characters I was using had been there before, and so on. Every sentence, I was looking things up in the encycopledia. I rang Jonathan Strahan in despair and said, 'This is really hard, I've been writing this one page for the last two hours. It's going to take me a year to write the book, at this rate!' And he said, 'that's because you're writing non-fiction.' He was absolutely right. It was a different way of writing entirely: I had to fact-check all the way through."

Having recently read a number of fictional nonfictions by Jeff Vandermeer, it somehow seems only right that there should be nonfictional fictions out there; and I don't know whether it actually does say anything useful about what it's like to write fanfiction, but it certainly sounds as though it should do.

On an admin note: the microphone in my mobile seems to have died, which means that if anyone calls me I can hear them but they can't hear me. Further updates as events warrant, but safe to say that for now text messages or emails are probably your best way of communicating with me (although if you're happy just to deliver a message, I suppose you could still call and talk into a void!).