My family and I were headed on a 16-hour road trip, and like most people, I was in desperate need to find something to keep me occupied. I can’t read a book in the car, but considered an audiobook. After a bit of book shopping, I turned to a long time friend who shares similar book interests, and she recommended Outlander. I quickly grabbed my iPod and earbuds, and downloaded the audiobook version with the idea that 32+ hours of listening was far more than enough to get me through the long ride in the car.
I went into the story blind. I had not read a single synopsis or summary of the book, and was merely going off my friend’s word. She had said to me, “Trust me, it’s a story like no other. Plus there’s a super hot Scotsman in a kilt.” Boy, was she right. I remember being so “plugged in” that a few hours into the road trip my husband looked over at me, pulled the earbud out of my left ear, and said “Are you ever going to talk to me again?” That was 8 years ago, and I’ve been hooked ever since.
Like every 30-something year-old fangirl, I quickly recruited other unsuspecting victims, converting them over to the world of Outlander. In a way, it made me feel better about my own obsession, naturally. :-) Along with this came purchases of every book in the series, in every format, and countless searches on the Internet to read each and every Outlander related article, blog, and find as many related Facebook pages/groups as possible. To my surprise, there were only a small handful (at the time).
A few years ago, Diana Gabaldon confirmed ongoing rumors that there was indeed going to be a screen adaptation. My excitement could not be contained. At that time, I decided to create a Facebook page of my own that could serve as an outlet for myself and other Outlander fans, which is how Outlander Addiction (Facebook.com/OutlanderAddiction) came to be.
From the time it was announced that Starz was going to take on the challenge of re-creating one of the best stories of all-time to display on our televisions, the entire fandom exploded. My Outlander Addiction page went from just a few hundred followers, to well over 25,000. Other pages are now popping up all over the place. Literally thousands of groups, blogs, and Twitter handles are now available to feed every fan’s hunger for Outlander, whether it’s to recap episodes each week, or complain about Sam Heughan’s hair color. It’s fantastic!
In the “offline” world, there’s also an abundance of Outlander-themed events and local groups, all within an arm’s reach to fans. I live in a small town in Southern Oregon (U.S.), and we have a small group of gals that occasionally gather for premieres and finales, and book events. We’ve been known to tote “Cardboard Jamie” around with us. He’s great for laughs. A couple of us even had the pleasure of attending the show’s premiere back in 2013 and meet a few of the cast members. Further up north in Portland, Oregon is a wonderful group called Outlandia. They organize Outlander-themed activities for charitable causes, and gather together for related adventures, such as the Portland Highland Games.
Being part of this crazy fandom is truly a delight. I’ve met an abundance of interesting people from all over the world, and we all share a common love of Outlander. Even if it means arguing over who gets the title of “Sassenach”. ;-)
Written by: Andrea James - admin of Outlander Addiction