The Review Game
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Fractured Illusion

What comments do you all dislike the most/like the least? Not counting "useless" things such "wow cool, update!" because that is not what we're talking about here. :P

4/4/2008 . Edited 4/30/2008 #61
KnittingKneedle

It's spelt 'American spelling' not 'English spelling'

I know people are trying to be helpful, but when you get it ALL the time it does start to grate on me.

4/4/2008 #62
A.S. Leer

My least favorite kind of comment would have to be where the person says something about how 'insert character name' should be with 'insert character' and it would help the plot and everything. Or just comments in general where people try to adjust my plot, because I used to get them constantly on one of my stories that I took down. It got so annoying by the seventh or eighth...

4/4/2008 #63
Otseis Ragnarok

I'm not a big fan of grammar related issues. I know it can be helpful and all, but I'm more interested in what everyone has to say about this deep storyline that I poured my entire being into creating... I can't stand it when I spend hours contemplating an interesting plotline, and all I get back is: You misspelled "you" in the first paragraph...

Even worse is when I get about 10 reviews all saying that.... I got it the first time.... (But maybe it's my fault for not fixing it after the first time...)

4/5/2008 #64
LucienofShadow

I actually really like seeing grammar, diction, and flow related reviews (one of the reasons I really like Kylie as a beta). I feel like, as an author, my job is to portray a tale to my readers- a task almost entirely separate from coming up with the tale.

That said the reviews I dislike most are the insipid, general, praise-full ones. It's somewhat useful if you tell me what you really liked about a chapter. But if you just say "I loved your character X." I sit there trying to figure out what about that character I did well. Given some of the reviews the answer would appear be 'everything.' With that input I ought to go write a story where every character is that character... holy cow, that's actually not that bad an idea. Someone remind me of it next time I appear to have too much time on my hands.

4/5/2008 #65
Otseis Ragnarok

What's wrong with mindless praise? I kind of like it, But then again, I am a narcissist....

4/6/2008 #66
Midnight In Eden

I despise it. It means that the reviewer often has no idea of what they've just read and are looking for you to review back or they're in awe of everything because they haven't read much quality work.

Either way it's a depressing scenario.

4/6/2008 #67
KnittingKneedle

I'll admit...I do find it easier to praise, but I think when the praise and the crit reach a sort of balance, that's when you get a good review...I hate reaction reviews, which are just 'In tears right now' or whatever...I always have to wonder, why are you telling me this?

4/7/2008 #68
Fractured Illusion

I think it's good to know if someone gets a reaction out of something, or if they lack a reaction. Thats helpful, if they say why they got that reaction. Ie "Man, they finally got together, and I couldn't even bother paying attention. I was sooo bored." type of reaction is helpful.

Like Ting Tong I think praise is needed to balance out the criticism. Praise reviews also let you know what you are doing well (hopefully ^^;)

I can't think of a least favorite review right now.. I try to see all my reviews from different angles so I can get something helpful out of it :P Ima ponder some more on this.

4/7/2008 #69
LucienofShadow
Well we all know about my praise issues...
4/7/2008 #70
Kumquat21

I remember hearing recently that the author of what I consider to be one of the best fantasy books written this decade- The Name of the Wind- has already finished the rest of the series. But the next book isn't due to be published until mid 2009. Why? Because he plans to spend a year and a half more editing and revising it. Holy bloody hell. If he can spend that long having his work edited and revising it myself, I sure as shooting can take a few harsh reviews on my humble works to heart.

^Stealing the italics idea!~

Shit, I miss tons . . .

Well, yes, it's good that he's taking criticism seriously, but I think there is such a thing as overediting. I don't know for a novel, or a series, a year and a half is fair, but too much longer and you'll be obsessing over minor details. If you think too much about it and analyze it's every minute flaw (Comma and or semicolon? Comma and or semicolon? OH GOD NO, THIS IS KILLING ME! =P) you're never going to send anything in to be published at all. It's better to dive into things headfirst!

Of course, this is coming from a girl who sent out one poem in the last month . . . ^^;; So practice what I preach, not what I do!

4/9/2008 #71
Midnight In Eden

I am guilty of overediting but more so in relation to my own work than others. I can feel when a poem or story is almost at completion and just needs a few tweaks but I can never see my own work as "finished". In fact, virtually every poem and story in my catalogue - all 500-600 odd - are still in progress, even the work I've had published.

Wow that's a depressing thought.

4/10/2008 #72
Otseis Ragnarok

Well, yes, it's good that he's taking criticism seriously, but I think there is such a thing as overediting. I don't know for a novel, or a series, a year and a half is fair, but too much longer and you'll be obsessing over minor details. If you think too much about it and analyze it's every minute flaw (Comma and or semicolon? Comma and or semicolon? OH GOD NO, THIS IS KILLING ME! =P)

I do that while I'm writing myfirst draft! Hence, why I never get anything done...

OCD for the lose!

4/10/2008 #73
Voxvocem

I admit I'm kinda sensitive to critique. I have this complex that switches from superiority to inferiority, so I'm all "this is great, people'll love it!" and then someone crits me, then I just shift to "...okay, it's crap." but I DO take crit to heart though I don't react the best way to it @_@

actually it depends on how they word it. like if they state so assertively that "(such and such) isn't correct/shouldn't happen" etc....that seems a little more harsh than it should. but then there's "(such and such) seems odd to me/doesn't quite make sense"...I like that sort of thing more. I'm not exactly sure why that is, but the latter just seems less...blunt? more friendly? cuz I'm pretty paranoid and automatically think everyone wants to shred me apart, haha.

but! I did join this site so I could stop being so high strung...so...eh :)

4/11/2008 #74
Otseis Ragnarok

I'm not exactly sure why that is, but the latter just seems less...blunt? more friendly?

i kinda feel the same way... Only, I retaain my "I'm the greatest!" attitude, regardless.

4/12/2008 #75
Starleaf

"I admit I'm kinda sensitive to critique. I have this complex that switches from superiority to inferiority, so I'm all "this is great, people'll love it!" and then someone crits me, then I just shift to "...okay, it's crap." but I DO take crit to heart though I don't react the best way to it @_@

actually it depends on how they word it. like if they state so assertively that "(such and such) isn't correct/shouldn't happen" etc....that seems a little more harsh than it should. but then there's "(such and such) seems odd to me/doesn't quite make sense"...I like that sort of thing more. I'm not exactly sure why that is, but the latter just seems less...blunt? more friendly? cuz I'm pretty paranoid and automatically think everyone wants to shred me apart, haha.

but! I did join this site so I could stop being so high strung...so."

Omg, I feel the same way. EXACTLY the same way.

4/16/2008 #76
Imalefty

i think there are lots of people here who are "sensitive" to critique. this doesn't mean that they're looking not looking for concrit... i think it just means that they expect people to be "nice" about it and not totally rip apart the writing.

this is kind of what i meant about being "nice." you have to have "tact." (i think that's how to describe it... XD) realize that, although you may be intending to give some great concrit, your review may be taken as an insult. so phrase it well... gently, i suppose.

does anyone know what i'm talking about? poorly worded reviews can be taken as flames... (i've seen some of those...) the content may indeed be concrit, but the method in which it is given is "insulting."

also, please note: "It is extremely helpful to use this opportunity [review] to comment on an aspect of the story that can be improved. A well rounded critique is often the most rewarding tool for the writer. " - this is written at the bottom of every review window. (if anyone bothers to read it) i think "well rounded" is definitely important. while finding things that can be improved are helpful, it is also helpful to point out things in particular that worked.

-Lefty

4/16/2008 #77
Otseis Ragnarok

"It is extremely helpful to use this opportunity [review] to comment on an aspect of the story that can be improved. A well rounded critique is often the most rewarding tool for the writer. "

Yeah, like anyone actually reads the instructions......

[Surgeon General's warning....]

4/17/2008 #78
Imalefty

i read the instuctions! XD and the surgeon general's warning is pretty important (ish) so do read it. :)

but seriously, that little blurb at the bottom of the review window is seriously one of the best summaries of what makes a good review . :)

-Lefty

4/18/2008 #79
Esther Jade

I have to say I'm guilty of phrases like "this should be" and "that should be" when I'm making grammar comments (especially about comma splices and who/whom issues). I try to only use them when I'm sure of what I'm saying; otherwise I'll say "I think this should be" etc. Also, I tend to give lots of grammar comments and I get really bored of tip-toeing around grammar.

Also, I like to state my opinion firmly most of the time. I'm one of those people that always has an opinion but will change it at the drop of a hat (I know I only know a little bit about not all that much). I don't think someone should do everything I say they should in a crit but I want my opinion to come across clearly. I don't want someone to think it's "just a thought" when I felt strongly about something. It doesn't matter to me whether they use my suggestion or not but I'd like them to actually know what my opinion is.

I've had crits from that lccorp2 guy (I don't know if you've ever had that experience - it can be pretty terrifying) and it didn't make me burst into tears (well, maybe, just a little ;) and stop writing. I read somewhere that if you've serious about writing you have to be willing to take harsh criticism and revise until you're half crazy with it (I think it was an article by Dean Koontz). And I read elsewhere that tip-toeing around someone who wants to be a writer is one of the least helpful things - people end up thinking they can make a career out of it and they can't (not because they're useless - people can always improve - but because they can't handle criticism).

At the same time, on this site I tend to check profiles to see how old people are and I don't think I'm ever that mean. I always try and say at least one positive (and true!) thing in every review. People need to know what they're doing well. I also try and give detailed reactions to the plot and characters as well as nit-picky comments so that the review will be well-balanced.

4/29/2008 #80
Fractured Illusion

Do you guys think it is important if you get review-replies? Important for further reviewing, I mean. And if you get review replies, can they change if you feel like continuing reviewing or not?

4/30/2008 #81
Esther Jade

I think review replies are very important, even if it's brief. When I'm considering reviewing a multi-chap, I'll review the first chapter and see what the response is. If there's one, I'll keep reviewing. If there isn't but I liked the story I'll read further but I won't review. And if the reply is a bit more than just "thank you" and is positive (even if they don't agree with what I've said, they demonstrate that they thought about it seriously) but the story was just okay, I'll also keep reviewing.

4/30/2008 #82
Kyllorac

It depends on the quality of the story. If the story is one I thoroughly enjoyed reading, and I have the time to do so, I'll be sure to leave at least one review, if not more. Generally, though, if the story is readable and author responds to my review, I'm more willing to review another chapter/work.

The amount of reviewing motivation I have is directly proportional to the quality of the response. :P

4/30/2008 #83
Fractured Illusion

I agree with both of you. The review-replies serve as a carrot. Why else would we review if we aren't sure if what we say are known to them (or even appreciated for that matter). Oftentimes, I also tend to forget about a story. I rarely put stories on author alert, so review-replies serve as a reminder to me. Not always true though. Some stories are just good and I want to read for the sake of entertainment. But they might not get a review chapter by chapter, but rather one at the end.

Reviewing takes energy, after all. I hate leaving sucky reviews, so if I do review it has to at least fullfill easy fix standard :p And I have no interest in doing all that if the author won't even acknowledge my thoughts.

So I agree with you two (Esther and Kyllorac). Now that review-replies are an official feature, there's no reason not to thank those that read and reviewed. I hate when I have forgotten to review reply. Immense guilt, I tell you. :/

4/30/2008 #84
KnittingKneedle

I like getting review replies and I hope I keep on top of giving them...though it's mostly as a simple thank-you, I'm never THAT tempted to discuss my story in it the way some people do, because I never know what to say- and in the RG especially, I doubt that the reviewer is that bothered anyway. Saying that, I still like it when other people do to me, though I have to be honest, not getting a review reply doesn't put me off reading...unless they are quite mean.

4/30/2008 #85
Fractured Illusion

But what if you have reviewed like three chapters of a story, and not gotten one review reply? Eventhough you may want to read, will you still review?

I would only if I think there are serious flaws, or if I am just optimistic the author will listen. Otherwise I don't really feel like reviewing if I'm not even sure they read it.

4/30/2008 #86
Otseis Ragnarok

I like Review replies. They make me happy, and help forge comeradery among the fictionpress population.

4/30/2008 #87
Imalefty

am i the only one who doesn't really care if i get a reply or not...? :\

actually, i don't know why i don't mind... probably because i didn't even know the "review reply" button was there for the longest time... XD maybe i should actually start replying to people... (aagh, sorry guys... T_T)

usually when i reply to someone (who hasn't reviewed me through RG), i go review his or her story. at the end, i put a little "thank you for reviewing my piece" kind of blurb. *shrug*

-Lefty

4/30/2008 #88
Otseis Ragnarok

I used to put that blurb, until I noticed the review reply feature.

[I only knew about that feature because someone replied to my review, though.]

5/1/2008 #89
Kumquat21

I was here before there were review replies. I'm still lax about using it. I'm an old dog set in her ways.

Again. I have that dumb old fashioned mentality. I like the idea of review reply, and when I had stories up, I did occasionally use it, but I think it's abused. There are too many impolite, whiney 'you don't understand my art!' revreplies. Just say thank you or ask to clarify, dammit~! (Janet) (( ^^ Just watched Rocky Horror Picture Show the other day! ))

Of course, the main reason I didn't use it was I was always busy doing something else when I checked my email and didn't think of it . . . ^_^;;

5/2/2008 #90
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