Perhaps most importantly, cosplay is not confined to the fan activity of costuming but is also embedded in fan practices as a whole. Most cosplayers do more with these characters than just cosplay them. If they have a strong preference for certain characters (see Pugh 2005), they may role-play them online on bulletin boards, on LiveJournal, in chat sessions, or elsewhere; write fan fiction about them; draw fan art depicting them; or use them as an avatar during chat sessions. My sister role-played Quistis on LiveJournal, and the fan who cosplayed Tifa with us often used a Tifa avatar when posting on bulletin boards. Discussing cosplay as a fan practice means taking all of these spaces into account.

Marloes de Vries