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A Guide To Getting Feedback In This Forum:

 1 Leradny, Tue, 22nd Mar '11 11:47:18 AM from Alameda, CA
I'm sure everyone wants some feedback, but the ratio of critiques to work is pretty vastly in favor of work. To make it easier on everyone:

How to Get People To Read Your Work
  • Make sure you actually have a concrete portion of prose/poetry for the critic to read.
  • Go to a chain thread.
  • Find someone who hasn't gotten feedback yet. Give them as much feedback as you want to get.
  • Post your work/a link to your work, making sure to ask specific questions so the future critic has something to go on when replying.
  • Answer all questions the critic may ask without getting offended. Phrase any information you need to convey that isn't in the story itself as briefly as possible. Use potholes and Trope-speak as little as possible.
  • Go over your own work and make sure there aren't too many spelling/grammar mistakes. Or get someone else to do it for you.

How To Get People To Ignore Your Work Completely
  • Post something that isn't finished work in one of the "List Your _____" threads: Post Your Concept, Post Your Idea For A Unique Superhero/Villain, Favorite Lines From Your Own Writing, and Your Writing Style are only a few examples. In my experience these are just ego-strokers that do absolutely nothing besides take up space.
  • Make a thread for a single short story.
    • Or a single chapter.
    • Or a single scene.
    • Hell, just make a thread for playing with a concept instead of actual finished work.
      • Bump these threads after a day/a few hours/a few minutes.
  • Ask for "any sort of feedback at all".
  • Ask questions which boil down to yes/no answers (for example, anything beginning with "Should I?" or "Is this good or bad?").
  • Ask questions which require the answering troper to know a whole bunch of shit about your work (for example, anything along the lines of "What should I do with ______?").
  • Ask tropers to do your (creative writing class) homework for you.
    • Or to help you write a story for a contest.
  • Phrase any information you need to convey that isn't in the story itself as creatively as possible because you are just dripping with GENIUS.
  • Depend entirely on tropes to convey information about your plot or characters.
  • Post something full of spelling and grammatical errors.
    • Get mad when someone says so while critiquing.
  • Get mad when someone says something you don't like.

edited 22nd Mar '11 11:49:59 AM by Leradny

  • Make a thread for a single short story.
    • Or a single chapter.
    • Or a single scene.
    • Hell, just make a thread for playing with a concept instead of actual finished

What might be the matter with making individual threads for a story? If you're wanting to share it with others?

I would agree though, for this denizens of this forum to cut down on posting one-shot throwaway concepts. (It feels for me like YouTube becoming taken over by corporate-drivel, panhandling content.) Because as good as they might seem, concepts come second-to-last in relation with good storywriting.

..Your Writing Style are only a few examples. In my experience these are just ego-strokers that do absolutely nothing besides take up space.

It is not inherently wasteful to reflect upon how you write, or build a new idea. But when it gets to the point where it helps little at all with actual writer's block..

I suppose we can ask the mods to sticky these chain threads.

edited 22nd Mar '11 12:40:20 PM by QQQQQ

 3 Mild Guy, Tue, 22nd Mar '11 12:47:15 PM from the bed I made.
I squeeze gats.
This should be stickied or whatnot. It sums up so much of the fail going on in this forum and offers common sense guidelines everyone should know.

Though I'm not sure what this bullet point means: Phrase any information you need to convey that isn't in the story itself as creatively as possible because you are just dripping with GENIUS.

She means phrases that use euphemism, convenient vagueness, numbing repetition and other such rhetorical subterfuges to create the impression that something has been said.

I'd like to remind that when lots of people start posting in a single chain thread, things could get very confusing, very fast. This is why I question the dislike on posting threads for stories and chapters.

edited 22nd Mar '11 12:53:03 PM by QQQQQ

Easily entertained
I approve of this thread, and the OP's advice. I've posted in a few ego-stroking threads, I confess, but not under the delusion that it was actually a productive use of my time; rather, it was for amusement, to see if I could get noticed in this FCW-like realm.

Another possible bullet point — don't do an unspaced Wall of Text. I am a lazy beast, driven by whim and intuition, and a Wall of Text implies the author was too lazy to use line breaks, and ergo, not worth my time.

Also, a quick note on descriptions; in this case a character, but it's the same with anything else:

Note that the only difference is the potholes, which insult the reader's intelligence and make the character seem like a pile of tropes, not a living character. Plus there's a chance of potholing to the wrong trope, which gives the wrong impression and makes you look like an imbecile. I follow the opposite rule on the wiki, funnily enough, because it amuses me to do so.

EDIT: One last thing. Describe a character with a YMMV tropes (like Magnificent Bastard) and I may have to borrow the Wet Trout. You know how smelly that thing gets after being dragged all the way from Wikipedia to TV Tropes? Very.

[down]: Here, have a cookie. You are a wise person. Honestly, it's to the point where if I was deconstructing something, I wouldn't actually use the word "deconstruction" when talking about it.

edited 22nd Mar '11 2:28:45 PM by KillerClowns

A travelling scholar
  • Don't ask about deconstruction.
You'll come across as a wannabe hipster.

Good job, OP. Now somebody please sticky this.

edited 22nd Mar '11 1:14:44 PM by Theram

 7 Ronka 87, Tue, 22nd Mar '11 1:48:30 PM from the mouth of madness.
Maid of Win
I thought about making a one-shot thread about all the one-shot threads popping up in WC, but I'm glad you did it first because this is much more practical than just complaining.

About making new threads for individual chapters/stories/etc.: The issue becomes people posting a new thread every time they have a new chapter, or have a new idea they want to talk about. It often comes off to me less as asking for help, and more "Look at me look at the cool concept I came up with read my stuff!" Plus, because you only get bits of the story at a time, it just comes across as a sort of schizophrenic mess.

My advice: Be clear about what kind of critique you want; be polite; be a team player (or, "give feedback, get feedback"); if you must make a new thread about your story/chapter/thing, be sure the questions you want answered warrant a thread all to themselves.
Thanks for the all fish!
So would a just-for-fun concept thing be better in World Building?

World Building involves developing the fantastical, speculatory aspects such as superpower-related material, cyberspace, airships, etc. Some of us confound Writer's Block with the "How would so-and-so concept sound?" box. I might suggest putting up guidelines for what Writer's Block is about — developing your storytelling creativity in general, and move all the concept/world-building threads here to the other forum. Like a good cleanup.

Or perhaps, we can reset the distinctions. Make a whole section in the fora, dedicated for creative writing and art, and we can add in a new subforum for such conceptual things (that are not pieces of writing already).

edited 22nd Mar '11 3:26:37 PM by QQQQQ

 10 Eldritch Blue Rose, Tue, 22nd Mar '11 3:30:06 PM from A Really Red Room
The Puzzler
Leradny, do you think it is a good idea for a writer to post a thread for his / her story to be on purely for organizational purposes, so critics can refer to different sections of the story?

Shouldn't there also be a guide to giving feedback to someone's work as well?
So now I know that my lack of success in college is due to ADD — or sleep apnea. I need to do a sleep study some time.
 11 Mr AHR, Tue, 22nd Mar '11 3:31:03 PM from ಠ_ಠ Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
Ahr river
But then that wouldn't be posting for getting feedback, now would it? The feedback would be in the post that directs you to the place you put your stuff.
 12 nrjxll, Tue, 22nd Mar '11 6:38:59 PM Relationship Status: Not war
Nice thread, though I have a few comments on it:

# Ask questions which boil down to yes/no answers (for example, anything beginning with "Should I?" or "Is this good or bad?").

Why is this bad, exactly? Yes/no answers are generally considered feedback, and assuming that all the author wants is (say) a mini-poll on whether their hero is too annoying, they work fine.

# Phrase any information you need to convey that isn't in the story itself as creatively as possible because you are just dripping with GENIUS.

I still don't understand what this actually means.

# Post something that isn't finished work in one of the "List Your _____" threads: Post Your Concept, Post Your Idea For A Unique Superhero/Villain, Favorite Lines From Your Own Writing, and Your Writing Style are only a few examples. In my experience these are just ego-strokers that do absolutely nothing besides take up space.

This seems overly harsh. These threads may not do much for feedback, but (with the exception of Favorite Lines From Your Own Writing, anyway) I also don't consider any more prone to ego-stroking then most of the forums.

Also, another form of thread likely to get relevant responses: Ask about a very specific plot point and make it clear you're doing so in your title (many of these do fit better in World Building, though). Generally, this will get fairly good answers instead of yacking. Not sure if you listed it or not, though.

I have a feeling this is too snarky to be stickied, but it should be anyway. Or maybe we should go with splitting off a new sub-forum to cover the general "talk about your works" stuff and leave Writer's Block for helping people with writer's block.

edited 22nd Mar '11 6:39:38 PM by nrjxll

 13 Mr AHR, Wed, 23rd Mar '11 2:46:32 AM from ಠ_ಠ Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
Ahr river
It doesn't matter whether it's not ego stroking comparatively, what matters whether it is ego stroking or not.
 14 Eldritch Blue Rose, Wed, 23rd Mar '11 12:28:47 PM from A Really Red Room
The Puzzler
QQQQQ: World Building involves developing the fantastical, speculatory aspects such as superpower-related material, cyberspace, airships, etc. Some of us confound Writer's Block with the "How would so-and-so concept sound?" box. I might suggest putting up guidelines for what Writer's Block is about developing your storytelling creativity in general, and move all the concept/world-building threads here to the other forum. Like a good cleanup.

Or perhaps, we can reset the distinctions. Make a whole section in the fora, dedicated for creative writing and art, and we can add in a new subforum for such conceptual things (that are not pieces of writing already).

Now that I think about it, QQQQQ's idea of splitting up things, especially the bit about making a whole section of the fora. We have an entire section devoted to enjoying different mediums, shouldn't we also have a whole section devoted to creating works in different mediums as well?

I think we should, so I made this layout according to how I think this should work out:

  • Creative
    • Writer's Block
      • This section is primarily devoted to improving writing skills in our forum's writers. Here you can ask for a critique of your work, engage in writing exercises, and get help in overcoming writer's block.
    • Concepts & Ideas
      • This section is primarily devoted to sharing ideas you want to include in your writing. Do you have this crazy idea for your story, but you are not sure whether to include it or not? Ask us about it here! Just make sure that you include any and all questions you have, because we cannot read your mind.
    • World Building
      • This section is primarily devoted to writers share information about their world building. Here you can share bits and pieces of your world, share bits of research you learned while creating your world, and seek help in finding information you need for world building.
    • Posted Works
      • This section is primarily devoted to posting finished work to share it with other people on the forum. This can be anything you have finished recently from pottery, plays, films, short stories, or any other media you have worked on.

So what are your thoughts on it? If you call me insane I'll treat that as a complement. :P

edited 24th Mar '11 6:52:11 AM by EldritchBlueRose

So now I know that my lack of success in college is due to ADD — or sleep apnea. I need to do a sleep study some time.
This seems good.
 16 Mr AHR, Wed, 23rd Mar '11 12:54:45 PM from ಠ_ಠ Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
Ahr river
By "finished" work, do you mean 100% complete or something more fanfiction-esque that is merely completed chapter by chapter?
Trolling Swordsman
"This page contains material that is kept because it is considered humorous"

I lol'd.

edited 23rd Mar '11 1:13:51 PM by SalFishFin

[up][up][up][up] That sounds goodly.

 19 Eldritch Blue Rose, Wed, 23rd Mar '11 2:34:48 PM from A Really Red Room
The Puzzler
MrAHR: By "finished" work, do you mean 100% complete or something more fanfiction-esque that is merely completed chapter by chapter?

Good question! grin

By finished I mean that whatever it is should be the finished product of what the person intends to make. If someone were to create some work that is episodic, like a web comic or a collection of short stories released one story at a time, then the thread of that work should be tagged [Episodic] or something similar in front of or behind the name of the thread.* Also if the work is episodic, the piece that does come out should be a final draft.

Does that answer your question, or is there something I don't understand?

edited 23rd Mar '11 2:35:07 PM by EldritchBlueRose

So now I know that my lack of success in college is due to ADD — or sleep apnea. I need to do a sleep study some time.
 20 Crystal Glacia, Wed, 23rd Mar '11 2:45:35 PM from Cedarpointland
patience, young padawan
[up] On sites like Fanfiction.net, chapters are typically posted in installments that may be a few days or a week or so apart. The person wanted to know if that's what you meant, or if you just meant having the author just post chapter after chapter in a row, perhaps without it being broken up by comments from others reading it.
Great men are forged in fire. It is the privilege of lesser men to light the flame.
 21 Eldritch Blue Rose, Wed, 23rd Mar '11 5:00:12 PM from A Really Red Room
The Puzzler
[up]

Oh, I think I understand now. I think as far as splitting up chapters by different posts or having all the chapters in one post is entirely up the writer's preference. However as a reader I'd have an easier time reading it when it is one chapter per post, so that the writer can have a Table of Contents in the beginning with all of the links to the different chapters.*

At least that's my opinion on the issue, what's your opinion? (This is open for anyone to answer.)

edited 23rd Mar '11 5:01:02 PM by EldritchBlueRose

So now I know that my lack of success in college is due to ADD — or sleep apnea. I need to do a sleep study some time.
I think posting it chapter-by-chapter helps with readability — you can link directly to the post for quick access, and you can make a handy table of contents at the OP.

 23 Mr AHR, Wed, 23rd Mar '11 5:13:13 PM from ಠ_ಠ Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
Ahr river
Eldritch: I have 40 pages of my graphic novel done, albeit unedited. Would I be able to say, post ten pages at a time, and when I write more, post them later? That's what is being asked.
 24 Crystal Glacia, Wed, 23rd Mar '11 5:18:49 PM from Cedarpointland
patience, young padawan
[up] That should be okay.
Great men are forged in fire. It is the privilege of lesser men to light the flame.
Should we put this proposal in Wiki Talk? Get the mods to add new sections for the forum, as well as ask them to pin the chain threads? I think this can help solve the discrepancies about thread qualities — and we can also put an introductory sticky at top, what this 'so-and-so' forum is about, as Yack Fest and OTC already have. This way, people know better on what to post.

Total posts: 37
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