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ankh View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ankh Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Feb 2017 at 2:45am
Thanks for posting how many people were in the contest, that is something I was really curious about.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stephenmatlock Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Feb 2017 at 7:02pm
I am trying really hard to review at least one story from every Heat.

And I am also reviewing every story where someone reviews my story.

Last time I tried to review stories I got mixed up in "did I review this already? it sounds familiar..." but could not tell.

THIS TIME I have created a worksheet with all the heats listed, one line per heat, and I randomized the order. As I review a story in each heat, I mark the title, author, and date. So far I have reviewed 46 of the 100 genres; if I complete the first 100, I'll rescramble the heat #s and start over.

I am not sure how many I can review, but I'm going to try to get as many as I can. (100 is only 3% of the total...)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote tcFlash Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Feb 2017 at 4:05am
My comments on a story may not always be an in-depth analysis, but I always try to say something that is true and supportive. To me, and this is a judgmental statement, it is very selfish to read and leave no comment. It means a person is willing to enjoy the writer's story, learn from their efforts, even learn from the other comments on that story, but not leave a trace that they were ever there.

Views are a very general indication of the amount of activity on a particular author's page and should be taken with a barrel of salt. I feel honored when someone, anyone, takes the time to leave even a short comment on my story. I think one reason views might be high and comments low is that there are so man new people joining this competition. They may be feeling unqualified to offer a critique. Possibly they are intimidated by some of the critiques of the veterans of these forums and don't feel they can offer the same level of input. 

I've wrestled with how to give quality feedback over the last few years. At the beginning, I praised every writer because they were all miles ahead of me and every story because they were so much better than what I could write at the time. Then I tried copying the critiquing style of some others which made me look like a cheap imitation of those very effective reviewers. Really, all we need to do is be supportive and speak the truth with a measure of compassion.


Edited by tcFlash - 11 Feb 2017 at 6:22am
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lisafox10800 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lisafox10800 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Feb 2017 at 12:54pm
Originally posted by tcFlash tcFlash wrote:

My comments on a story may not always be an in-depth analysis, but I always try to say something that is true and supportive. To me, and this is a judgmental statement, it is very selfish to read and leave no comment. It means a person is willing to enjoy the writer's story, learn from their efforts, even learn from the other comments on that story, but not leave a trace that they were ever there.

Views are a very general indication of the amount of activity on a particular author's page and should be taken with a barrel of salt. I feel honored when someone, anyone, takes the time to leave even a short comment on my story. I think one reason views might be high and comments low is that there are so man new people joining this competition. They may be feeling unqualified to offer a critique. Possibly they are intimidated by some of the critiques of the veterans of these forums and don't feel they can offer the same level of input. 

I've wrestled with how to give quality feedback over the last few years. At the beginning, I praised every writer because they were all miles ahead of me and every story because they were so much better than what I could write at the time. Then I tried copying the critiquing style of some others which made me look like a cheap imitation of those very effective reviewers. Really, all we need to do is be supportive and speak the truth with a measure of compassion.

tcFlash, I could not agree more.  I was brand-new to the competition and the boards this summer with FFC, and really had no clue where to start.  So I took a deep breath, posted my story, and started reading like mad.  I started with those in my heat, then with those who reviewed my story, moved on to those who seemed to offer really good and balanced critiques, and then on to anything that just looked really interesting to me.

We're all in this together, and just as our writing styles may differ, our critique styles can differ as well.  In my time here I don't think I've encountered even one "troll" - everyone who reviews is respectful and sometimes, even when someone doesn't have much constructive to offer (or is hesitant to do so) a simple, "Hey, I really liked [THIS] in your story - good luck!" is helpful.  And I can't emphasize enough, the best way to be reviewed is to acknowledge others' work.  It's a give and take.  

You said it beautifully - Really, all we need to do is be supportive and speak the truth with a measure of compassion.

Happy Saturday, everyone.  And happy reading... Clap
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tcFlash Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Feb 2017 at 1:11pm
Originally posted by lisafox10800 lisafox10800 wrote:

Originally posted by tcFlash tcFlash wrote:

My comments on a story may not always be an in-depth analysis, but I always try to say something that is true and supportive. To me, and this is a judgmental statement, it is very selfish to read and leave no comment. It means a person is willing to enjoy the writer's story, learn from their efforts, even learn from the other comments on that story, but not leave a trace that they were ever there.

Views are a very general indication of the amount of activity on a particular author's page and should be taken with a barrel of salt. I feel honored when someone, anyone, takes the time to leave even a short comment on my story. I think one reason views might be high and comments low is that there are so man new people joining this competition. They may be feeling unqualified to offer a critique. Possibly they are intimidated by some of the critiques of the veterans of these forums and don't feel they can offer the same level of input. 

I've wrestled with how to give quality feedback over the last few years. At the beginning, I praised every writer because they were all miles ahead of me and every story because they were so much better than what I could write at the time. Then I tried copying the critiquing style of some others which made me look like a cheap imitation of those very effective reviewers. Really, all we need to do is be supportive and speak the truth with a measure of compassion.

tcFlash, I could not agree more.  I was brand-new to the competition and the boards this summer with FFC, and really had no clue where to start.  So I took a deep breath, posted my story, and started reading like mad.  I started with those in my heat, then with those who reviewed my story, moved on to those who seemed to offer really good and balanced critiques, and then on to anything that just looked really interesting to me.

We're all in this together, and just as our writing styles may differ, our critique styles can differ as well.  In my time here I don't think I've encountered even one "troll" - everyone who reviews is respectful and sometimes, even when someone doesn't have much constructive to offer (or is hesitant to do so) a simple, "Hey, I really liked [THIS] in your story - good luck!" is helpful.  And I can't emphasize enough, the best way to be reviewed is to acknowledge others' work.  It's a give and take.  

You said it beautifully - Really, all we need to do is be supportive and speak the truth with a measure of compassion.

Happy Saturday, everyone.  And happy reading... Clap

Well said, lisafox. I would love to read some accounts of the early days in the forums. It must have been a very special time because there is no way the forum today could be this well organized and supportive without an excellent beginning. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pfpwrites Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2017 at 12:19pm
I am one of those terrible people who don't leave feedback-sorry! Honestly, I am barely keeping up with my in person writing group. Some people join contests because they want a firm deadline for their work-and sometimes that is because their life & jobs are so busy, that they need firm deadlines ;) Oh, wait, maybe that's just me....
Anyway, I bet there are many "mean to comment on this cool story" folks & some will comment if you give them more time.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote LoboGal26 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2017 at 3:34pm
Originally posted by Pfpwrites Pfpwrites wrote:

I am one of those terrible people who don't leave feedback-sorry! Honestly, I am barely keeping up with my in person writing group. Some people join contests because they want a firm deadline for their work-and sometimes that is because their life & jobs are so busy, that they need firm deadlines ;) Oh, wait, maybe that's just me....
Anyway, I bet there are many "mean to comment on this cool story" folks & some will comment if you give them more time.


I understand your perspective, but I have a couple of questions:
  • Why do you write?
  • Do you consider yourself a successful writer? A serious writer?
  • Do you participate in contests to learn and improve? Or just as an excuse to write?

I'll be honest, I'm not a prolific commentor. I read a lot of the posts/submissions, but sometimes I don't have anything to add to the previous feedback. And sometimes I can't give feedback because my editorial experience makes it difficult to overlook structural, coherence, grammatical, etc. troubles and my role in peer feedback is to give peer feedback. But when I do give feedback, I usually learn something in the process that can help me be better at my chosen craft (I recently left a 25yr career in strategic intelligence and international affairs to focus on a life-long dream to write...in addition to running a homestead and renovating a neglected house.)

To me the experience of reading and commenting isn't a matter of 'have to' but a matter of wanting to enrich and improve. There are times when I don't want to, then I recall how excited I am when I see someone has read my work...that's why I write and I want to do it well.

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