Yesterday I was having a discussion with vaysh about who tops more in fanfic, Draco or Harry (link here). I was of the opinion that it seemed fairly balanced, but that was from my perspective of mostly reading recent fic. Vaysh has been reading Drarry fanfiction for much longer than me, however, and she disagreed:
"statistical evidence is very clear: There is in no way a 50:50 balance between top and bottom!Draco fanworks. For many people, bottom!Draco remains the default."
Aha, I thought, a statistical challenge! As it turns out, I have a database of Drarry fics which I can consult, so I am in position to offer an answer to this pressing question. There are nearly 1500 Drarry fics written between 2002 and 2015 for which I have information about who tops or bottoms, and according to this data, we're both right :)
- Who bottoms more across all fics in all years?
Answer: Draco, clearly (point vaysh)
- Has the proportion of bottom!Draco to bottom!Harry begun to balance out more in recent years?
Answer: Yes, clearly (point snowgall)
Before I get to the fancy chart and graphs, let me explain a bit where my data comes from and how reliable and/or biased it could be.
( Click for explanation of the data )
Ok, enough caveats about the data, on to the chart! I hope it is self-explanatory, because I'm not going to waste more words explaining something you can see for yourself :) Just note that I'm including fics from 2015 too, even though we're only 3 months in.
( Click for Table )
And now for some pretty pie charts:
( Click for year-by-year pie charts )
As you can see, before 2010 bottom!Draco was much more common than bottom!Harry, but since then the proportion of bottom!Draco fics has gone down, to the point that of the works I've analyzed for 2014, there's a perfect balance between the two!
Is the influence of the dracotops_harry fest part of the reason for this change? It's possible. The DTH fest began in 2011, and my data seems to date the gradual shift to 2010.
It's also true that some of the disparity could be traced to a few big-name authors who tend(ed) to prefer one dynamic over another. Here's just a few examples I know of authors who seemed to prefer bottom!Draco but who haven't written as much in the last few years:
There are many more bottom!Draco authors who are still actively writing HD, among them: enchanted_jae, oldenuf2nb, and samaelthekind.
But interestingly, I can only think of
one long-time author who seems to prefer bottom!Harry: megyal.
(Edit: vaysh pointed out that lomonaaeren is also a bottom!Harry author. My bad!)
If you have any insights into this data, disagree about my analysis, or can think of something I missed, please leave a comment!
Edit: Inspired by suggestions in the comments section, I have re-run the numbers using just data from the hd_fan_fair fests. See my write-up here. The data was collected through crowd-sourcing, and we are currently working on building a second crowd-sourced spreadsheet of data from hd_smoochfest too!