I get emails on a fairly regular basis from people asking if I will read their books or stories, and Anonymous Santa Fe brought up the same question in a comment on my last blog entry.
It gives me great pleasure to know my books have inspired other people. I even, with a minimal amount of googling, found a Last Survivors fanfic page. Given that I came up with the idea for Life As We Knew It from watching the movie Meteor on TV one afternoon, I can hardly complain if my work gets someone else plotting away. And it's fun to think of my characters having lives I'm unaware of, sort of like hearing you're in a friend's dream.
But I haven't read any of the fanfic stories, and I always say no when asked to read anything. It's pretty much a hard and fast rule in my life. I figured out a while back that it's easier to say no to everybody than to say yes to some and no to others and have to figure out why I'm saying yes or no.
I don't even read my friends' books for the most part. As a courtesy, I don't give them my books to read either.That kills me sometimes, because I'm the bestest writer ever and their lives would be roughly 1,000,000,000% better if they read my most recent masterpiece. Then again, they probably know the same about their most recent masterpieces and me.
Feel free to take my characters or my plotlines and have fun. Don't tell me what your ideas are though, because I don't want to accidentally "steal" them (I got an email the other day from someone with what was basically a great idea, and I'm relieved that it would never work in The Shade Of The Moon as I'm currently planning it).
So thank you for asking, but the answer will always be no. Of course, if the question is, "Would you like a chocolate chip cookie?" you'll get a whole different response!