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Author Topic: Where is my tail?  (Read 3564 times)
Quinn Yellowfox
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« on: May 29, 2011, 01:02:56 AM »

Oops, I'm sitting on it.

I apologize for not doing more reviews. Critiques in the story archive have fallen off dramatically and, as a leader in the group, I feel partially responsible.

Let's get off our tails and help those aspiring writers who come to us for mentorship. It is a big part of why we are here to begin with... right?

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« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2011, 12:07:35 PM »

I'll try to do more in the upcoming weeks. Right now I'm just swamped with work and classes and rehearsals and performances. I haven't written anything in months now, and the only critiques I've been able to find the time for have been private ones.

About mentorship: I trawl through the large furry sites occasionally for mentions and feedback on FurRag. Our members continue to spread word on SoFurry and FA, but most of the people they meet still get the impression that FurRag is inactive. They cite the front page that hasn't been updated in "months" (this was in April), the huge roster of inactive members, and the fact that they didn't get a single comment on whatever stories they posted.

One solution to that would be simple - simply ask members to review more frequently to give the (correct) impression that we are still active [potential problems: how frequently can editors post in-depth reviews without burning themselves out within a month? what happens to the stories that no one, even the editors, wants to review?]. However, I've always thought that the bulk of activity in FurRag resided in these forums, and visitors could be missing us because, after all, why would the forum to a writing site be more active than the site itself? We are a workshop, though, as compared to the archive, and I'm not sure if that's apparent to our visitors.

So my other proposal: make the forums more prominent on the home page. I don't know how flexible the code is, but simply adding in an unobtrusive "Most Recent Posts" box (linked to the forum of course) may go a long way to convincing people there IS life on the site.
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« Reply #2 on: May 29, 2011, 01:15:43 PM »

Same, I've been really busy with my editing lately.  I'm working on a novel, with a potential 2 more on the way.  Once I get some free time, I would love to start reviewing.

I also feel like it might help to have a forum category open specifically to people looking for criticism.  It can allow the author to make a topic whenever they post a story, and threads are a bit easier to go back in forth in.


I don't know.  Just my two cents.
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« Reply #3 on: May 29, 2011, 03:11:16 PM »

I also feel like it might help to have a forum category open specifically to people looking for criticism.  It can allow the author to make a topic whenever they post a story, and threads are a bit easier to go back in forth in.
Yeah, I'm working on something like that, actually. Well, *was*, until everything else got in the way. >.>

If you want to chip in, let me know. I've got a couple (literally) of other people helping out, but any more assistance would of course be appreciated.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2011, 03:14:03 PM by Reiter » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2011, 03:34:47 PM »

I'll just note here that in the original design of FurRag, there was a pseudo-member called "Dick McCritic" who automatically created a thread like that in the forum for every new story posted to the archive.

For the most part, it didn't seem to generate any activity at all, other than filling up the forum with those initial postings, so Alex eventually got rid of Mr. McCritic even though you can still find his profile if you look for it.

Generating comments and criticism doesn't seem to be a thing you can do mechanically. FA and SF get lots of "comments" because they are very active sites with thousands of users. But the actual content of most of those comments isn't much in the way of feedback when you look at it seriously. "I like this," Or "Do more of this," really doesn't inspire me that much.
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« Reply #5 on: May 29, 2011, 04:57:28 PM »

I also feel like it might help to have a forum category open specifically to people looking for criticism.  It can allow the author to make a topic whenever they post a story, and threads are a bit easier to go back in forth in.
Yeah, I'm working on something like that, actually. Well, *was*, until everything else got in the way. >.>

If you want to chip in, let me know. I've got a couple (literally) of other people helping out, but any more assistance would of course be appreciated.

I'd love to help how I can.  Just let me know ^_^


I'll just note here that in the original design of FurRag, there was a pseudo-member called "Dick McCritic" who automatically created a thread like that in the forum for every new story posted to the archive.

For the most part, it didn't seem to generate any activity at all, other than filling up the forum with those initial postings, so Alex eventually got rid of Mr. McCritic even though you can still find his profile if you look for it.

Generating comments and criticism doesn't seem to be a thing you can do mechanically. FA and SF get lots of "comments" because they are very active sites with thousands of users. But the actual content of most of those comments isn't much in the way of feedback when you look at it seriously. "I like this," Or "Do more of this," really doesn't inspire me that much.

I don't think that auto-generating a thread for them would work (it apparently didn't), though the idea did cross my mind.  I know full well that some people don't care about constructive criticism; they just want to post things.  The threads can be saved for those that actually want others to give them feedback on their work.

The way I am seeing it:  The author makes a thread with a link to the story, along with a synopsis and any additional info (clean or yiffy, types of sexual encounters, any specific fetishes it goes along with, etc).

It pretty much gives the info that is given on each of the stories when you go into the furrag archives, but it allows for people to comment.  For example, if the author is going "WHY IS NO ONE READING MY STORY,"  we can respond with, "Well, if you wrote something other than pokemon x halo porn, then we might."
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« Reply #6 on: May 29, 2011, 06:04:36 PM »

Um, I've used that answer before. Well, actually more like "If you wrote anything but yiff-yiff-yiff" I'd be more likely to read it. Alas, it wasn't well received. Cheesy

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Quinn Yellowfox
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« Reply #7 on: May 29, 2011, 09:22:07 PM »

Our members continue to spread word on SoFurry and FA, but most of the people they meet still get the impression that FurRag is inactive. They cite the front page that hasn't been updated in "months" (this was in April), the huge roster of inactive members, and the fact that they didn't get a single comment on whatever stories they posted.

So my other proposal: make the forums more prominent on the home page. I don't know how flexible the code is, but simply adding in an unobtrusive "Most Recent Posts" box (linked to the forum of course) may go a long way to convincing people there IS life on the site.

I take responsability for not keeping "Site News" up to date. I'll try to update it at the beginning of each month. I'll also edit the "Welcome" in the boilerplate.

If I created a thread for editor staff bio's, would that be something others would add to? It might be a place that submitters could look at, get to know something about the folks giving critique and ask questions. It would also keep those of us who have little interest in yiff to be clear about what we prefer to read. I'd keep it locked so that only Altivo and I could post into it.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2011, 09:23:46 PM by Quinn Yellowfox » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2011, 10:04:39 PM »

If I created a thread for editor staff bio's, would that be something others would add to? It might be a place that submitters could look at, get to know something about the folks giving critique and ask questions. It would also keep those of us who have little interest in yiff to be clear about what we prefer to read. I'd keep it locked so that only Altivo and I could post into it.
That would require that we have an editor staff, though, and it was my understanding that every member of the archive is already an editor, if they want to be. That said, we *could* still do that. I'm just concerned that once Scarlet Letters is up and running, it might become a bit redundant.
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« Reply #9 on: May 29, 2011, 10:39:16 PM »

I'm rather wary about openly offering help because of my paralyzing fear of breaking commitments. Between trying to finally get my novel out in print and working my rudder off to impress the boss at my new job, I've hardly any time left at all.
But maybe it's time to get over my fears. If you DO end up starting a critic bio circle -- or whatever it is -- count me in. I'd be happy to try and help out.
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« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2011, 11:46:34 PM »

Got it. Not such a good idea. I'll let it go.  Smiley
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« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2011, 11:58:54 PM »

Um, I've used that answer before. Well, actually more like "If you wrote anything but yiff-yiff-yiff" I'd be more likely to read it. Alas, it wasn't well received. Cheesy



Well, they can complain, but on the inside they learned something.



On another note, I'd be happy to tear apart people's dreams...I mean look at their work.  If something does come up and we do start a circle of editors, I'd be happy to pitch in.  Though, I'd blame Alflor if anything bad happened.  Sorry man. =p
« Last Edit: May 30, 2011, 12:18:27 AM by Korygon » Logged

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« Reply #12 on: May 30, 2011, 02:30:39 AM »

Um, I've used that answer before. Well, actually more like "If you wrote anything but yiff-yiff-yiff" I'd be more likely to read it. Alas, it wasn't well received. Cheesy



Well, they can complain, but on the inside they learned something.



On another note, I'd be happy to tear apart people's dreams...I mean look at their work.  If something does come up and we do start a circle of editors, I'd be happy to pitch in.  Though, I'd blame Alflor if anything bad happened.  Sorry man. =p

Bad... as in... what, exactly?
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Quinn Yellowfox
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« Reply #13 on: May 30, 2011, 03:23:40 AM »

On another note, I'd be happy to tear apart people's dreams...I mean look at their work.  If something does come up and we do start a circle of editors, I'd be happy to pitch in.  Though, I'd blame Alflor if anything bad happened.  Sorry man. =p

I recently got a letter from someone whose work I ripped apart line by line. He was very thankful and recently submitted for publication for the first time. I'd gladly post the letter if anyone wants to see it (Edited for privacy of course).

When I got my first really critical review, I almost threw up but I learned a lot. Telling someone that their baby is ugly is tough but necessary sometimes. It just needs to be done without stifling the creative spark.
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« Reply #14 on: May 30, 2011, 03:28:17 AM »

I'm in that list of folks who got a great line-by-line review, this one coming from Reiter. What made it even funnier was, as I read through his comments, I found myself thinking "My god, how did I miss that?" Hindsight's 20-20, no? XP

To answer the OP, I plan on getting back into the reviewing circle. Reading and reviewing other people's work gives me inspiration and ideas for my own work (not plagiarizing, of course!). If we're gonna make an editor's circle, count me in. I'd love to. ^^
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