Help Page
On this page is a definition list of special terms associated with the Institute and with fanfiction in general. You can also find guidelines for submitting things that aren't fanfiction along with a collection of frequently asked questions. If you need more in-depth assistance, please contact our psychiatrist.


Otaku Institute Terminology

  • Addictions: fanfiction

  • Departments: main categories

  • Divisions: fandoms

  • Otaku: a general Japanese term for a devoted (obsessed) fan
(only "So Blue" has all of the links with the below names; other skins may have the original link names)

Links (Institution Services)

  • Beta-Readers: OI's list of people who have volunteered to beta the work of others

  • Commit Yourself: register for an account

  • Contact the Director: contact Goku Girl

  • Enter the Sanctum: login

  • Manage Your Addiction: access your account

  • Escape Your Addiction: logout

  • Find Addictions: search OI

  • Layout Options: change the current skin

  • Manage Your Addiction: access your account

  • Psychiatry: OI's help page

  • Reception: the index page

  • Regulations: OI's terms of service

  • Rules: OI's submission rules

Links (Browse Our Collection)
  • Active Otaku: browse by otaku who have submitted addictions

  • Continuing Addictions: browse by series

  • General Archive: browse by the general archive's categories

  • Levels of Addiction: browse by ratings

  • Names of Addictions: browse by title

  • Proposed Addictions: browse by challenges

  • Rec'd Addictions: links to off-site fanfics that otaku have recommended

  • Recent Addictions: browse by the newest (and just updated) addictions

  • Same-Sex Archive: visit OI's same-sex archive

  • Top Addictions: browse the top lists

Fanfiction Terminology

  • Canon: the original plot line of a fandom; compare "fanon"

  • Fanon: something created by fans that becomes mainstream in the fanfiction world; compare "canon"

  • OFC: original female character

  • OMC: original male character

  • Alternate Reality: usually called "AR"; the fanfic is a mild deviation from the original plot, usually starting from a certain point

  • Alternate Universe: usually called "A/U"; the fanfic is a complete deviation from the original plot (sometimes referred to as "alternate reality" even though this is different)

  • Crossover: when the characters of two or more fandoms meet; compare "fusion"

  • Fusion: the theme of one fandom meets another (example: a fanfic that uses the idea of Ranma 1/2's cursed springs); compare "crossover"

  • Lemon: the fanfic contains graphic descriptions of sex; compare "lime"

  • Lime: the fanfic contains mild descriptions of sex; compare "lemon"

  • Plot? What Plot?: usually called "PWP", sometimes referred to as "smut"; the fanfic has no purpose other than to be a vehicle for sexual content

  • Songfic: a fanfic with song lyrics that reads like a narrative

  • Vidfic: a fanfic with song lyrics that reads like a play
  • Abuse: the fanfic contains references to, or actual cases of, domestic violence (child, partner/spouse, etc.)
  • BDSM: bondage, domination, submission, masochism or any combination thereof; all four may not be included in the fanfic

  • Coarse Language: the fanfic contains language that you usually only find in R-rated (or porn) movies
  • Dark: the fanfic heavily deals with psychological issues
  • Drug Usage: the fanfic contains instances of serious drug usage (alcohol, cigarettes, and marijuana are usually not included in this warning)
  • Fluff: the fanfic is lighthearted, typically involving scenes of sugary sweetness between partners or cutesy scenes about children that are supposed to make you go "awww!"
  • Graphic Violence: the fanfic contains multiple instances of explicit violence, usually murder
  • Major Character Death: the fanfic contains the death of a major character in a fandom
  • Minor Character Death: the fanfic contains character death, but doesn't involve a major character
  • Non-Consensual/Rape: the fanfic deals with the issue of forced sex
  • OOC: the fanfic contains major or minor (non-original) characters that aren't acting the way they do in the canon and there is no good explanation for it in the fanfic
  • Suicide: at least one major character kills themselves

Pairing Symbols
  • +: indicates a friendship

  • /: indicates a romantic relationship that may or may not include sex

  • x: indicates a sexual relationship

Submission Guidelines


Read the rules then sign up for an account ("Commit Yourself") if you haven't already. If you have an account on the Otaku Institute (same-sex archive) then you don't need to sign up for one on this site.

Afterward, follow these steps:

  1. Login with your otaku name and secret password via the form on the navigation bar or by clicking the "Enter the Sanctum" link under the "Institution Services" menu (the options available depend on the skin you're using)
  2. Click on the "Manage Your Addiction" link found under the "Institution Services" menu
  3. Click "Add new story"
  4. Fill in everything on the form that you want to fill in (note that the fields marked by red asterisks are required), then click preview to make sure that your story looks the way you want it to.

    • If you have an HTML file created by an HTML editor or by hand, or a simple text file, then you will probably be able to upload it without problems.
    • If you have an HTML file created by Microsoft Word or another word processor then I recommend that you copy & paste your story into the text editor. If you don't see the text editor, go to "Manage Your Addiction" > "Edit Preferences" and check the box next to "Use tinyMCE WYSWYG editor".

  5. If you have additional chapters, go to "Manage Your Addiction" > "Manage Stories" then click the "Add New Chapter" link in the "Options" column.


If you have a fanfic for a fandom that's not listed (and it falls into Japanese culture), feel free to e-mail me or use the "Contact the Director" link. Please give me a list of major characters for the fandom in your e-mail (and use their original Japanese names if you can). Also, don't forget to tell me which department (category) it falls under.


If you have a category suggestion, either e-mail me or use the "Contact the Director" link under Institution Services. Explain why you think it should exist and tell me whether or not you have content for it.


All members and visitors can submit anime, manga, video game, and J-pop fanart as long as this link is active. If it isn't then fanart isn't being accepted at the moment. Also, I'm unable to accept adult-oriented artwork. Please crop all extra space and only JPEGs and GIFs are allowed. If you don't want your e-mail address (or name) listed, please tell me.

Frequently Asked Questions

[Site-Related - Submission-Related - Fanfiction-Related]


Q: What do the ratings mean?
A: Since the MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America) no longer wants anyone to use their ratings unless they have a film and have applied for the MPAA to review it, I've instituted another system based upon the video game rating system. E = everyone (formerly "G"); PT = pre-teen (formerly "PG"); T = teen (formerly "PG-13"); M = mature (formerly "R"); AO = adults only (formerly "NC-17").

Q: Who are these weird characters I see?
A: I listed characters the way they are in the original version of the anime/manga, which usually means family name first but there are exceptions (such as Full Metal Alchemist). I also used their original names. In parentheses beside the name, I put more identifying information such as an alternate name or the English dub version of the name. If any of them are incorrect, please use the "Contact the Director" link on your left to tell me about it.

Q: How do I rate a fanfic? How are the numbers calculated?
A: Rate each fanfic according to the content within. 10 = 5 stars; 9 = 4.5 stars; 8 = 4 stars; 7 = 3.5 stars; 6 = 3 stars; 5 = 2.5 stars; 4 = 2 stars; 3 = 1.5 stars; 2 = 1 star; 1 = .5 star. Is the fanfic formatted correctly (as in having some clear indication of when different paragraphs start). Are words spelled correctly? Are the sentences complete and grammatically correct? Is the punctuation in the right place? Is the plot interesting? Are the characters believable? Please rate everything accurately so that fellow visitors, as well as the author, can be informed. It also wouldn't hurt to leave a review pointing out problems politely instead of one that's merely a flame.

Q: How do I mark my fanfic as "complete"?
A: There are two different ways. One is to go to click "Manage Your Addiction" then "Manage Stories". On that page you can click the link that reads "no" after "Complete" to change it to "yes". Another way is to click on the individual story and check the box next to "Complete?" at the bottom of the page. Don't forget to click submit afterwards to record your changes.

Q: How does a story become featured?
A: I take recommendations for featured stories (yours or someone else's) or I feature whatever catches my eye at the time. Soon I will start holding a monthly contest to determine the featured story.

Q: Why aren't there more (insert type here) fanfics on this site?
A: I have no control over what people decide to submit to the archive so there is always going to be more of one type of fanfic than another. If you have a fanfic of that type, you are more than welcome to contribute to the archive.

Q: Why am I being asked to enter a security code to review a fanfic/send mail to an author/etc.?
A: This is to stop people from using the forms for spam. If you're tired of being asked to enter a security code, make sure you're logged in before you try to use a form.


Q: Can I submit a fanfic I have on the Dragon Ball Fanfiction Library to the Otaku Institute?
A: Yes. The DBFL is a specialty archive like OI's same-sex archive. You can also submit a Dragon Ball fanfic originally on OI to the DBFL.

Q: Can I submit a fanfic to more than one category?
A: Yes, but this doesn't mean submitting the same story more than once. Instead, just select more than one category using the ">" button when you add (or edit) a fanfic.

Q: How do I select more than one co-author/character/genre/warning?
A: Windows users hold down "ctrl" when clicking multiple selections. Mac users hold down the "apple" key.

Q: How do I add more chapters to my fanfic?
A: Go to "Manage Your Addiction" then "Manage Stories" and click on the fanfic you want to add chapters to. At the bottom of the page there is a link called "Add New Chapter".

Q: How do I create a series (a group of related stories)?
A: Adding a series is similar to adding a fanfic. Fill in all of the information you want associated with the series (note: the fields marked with an asterisk are required) then click "submit". On the next page you'll be asked to associate stories with that series. By default, you're the listed author and all your stories (as well as series) will show up. (Note: you can add a series to another series). The final page lists everything you checkmarked and gives you the opportunity to reorder them. Don't forget to click "add to series" or your series won't have anything in it. You can edit a series at any time by going to "Manage Your Addiction" > "Manage series".

Q: Can I submit a fanfic with a same-sex pairing to OI's general archive?
A: Yes, actually, but only if the same-sex couple isn't the primary (or one of the primary) pairings. For fanfics with same-sex couples as the primary pairing(s), visit the Same-Sex Archive.

Q: My story hasn't been validated yet. Did I do something wrong?
A: Sometimes I'm very slow when it comes to looking over submissions. If you don't meet the requirements, I'll send you an e-mail about it and give you a chance to fix what's wrong.

Q: My fanfic isn't complete. Can I still submit it to the archive?
A: Unfinished fanfics are more than welcome, but you might have disappointed people on your hands if you take a while to finish them :). I recommend finishing at least half of your fanfic before starting to post it.

Q: Can I submit non-anime/manga/video game/J-pop-related fanfiction?
A: Well, it depends on a few things. 1) Do you have an anime/manga/video game/J-pop fanfic already in the archive? 2) Are you an author of good standing? This means that you follow the rules and have been placed on the auto-validate list because you submit quality work.


Q: What are the meanings of the Japanese words I see in fanfics?
A: If you want a list of Japanese words and their definitions (as well as a short list of general anime things I've also defined) click here. For words/phrases not listed there, you can use this online dictionary or this one.