Solaris

Lack of reviews.

Lack of reviews - like them or hate them?  

158 members have voted

  1. 1. Lack of reviews - like them or hate them?

    • I hate them, makes me want to pull my stories!
      52
    • I love what reviews I got from my readers even if there isn't many.
      84
    • I don't really mind, as long as people read my stories.
      18


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It does make you wonder where you've gone wrong. I mean, recently I posted a story in two parts, one got over 600 hits, the other one more than 1000 ( :D ) - and put together they got THIRTEEN ratings and not one single review. Do I write that badly???

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I don't hate a lack of reviews enough to pull my stories (as evidenced by a story of mine that, at the moment, has over 1,000 hits but still a grand total of 0 reviews or ratings), but they do drive me away from fandoms.

I often write in small fandoms simply because they're small fandoms and a complete lack of fic bothers me. But, of course, being small fandoms I get hardly any reviews, so, after an average of about two fics, I often just shrug and move on to the next obsession.

I have dabbled in larger fandoms from time to time, but response isn't that much larger there, relatively speaking. After all, a fic with 6 reviews and about 7,000 hits can be said the be less succesfull, review-wise, as a fic with 2 reviews out of about a 1,000 hits.

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i used to be very bothered about the many hits and no/few reviews matter. but when i think about how many hits the story is receiving, it still mean something to me. try not to think so much and you won't feel too bad. at least now I am happy just writing for myself and not solely for the fans anymore. it is actually quite fun to read my own stories after some time.

be your own number 1 fan! =)

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damn, I've been away for a while but whatever, felt like I'd post in this thread since its relevant. My fics have pretty much the most hits of any fic in their given section (reviews are hard to come by in the videogames section as I'm sure WotanAnubis will attest), and generally I have the most reviews in the given section, but its still just pitiful. I've not written anything for AFF in the past 6 months for the simple reason that the reviews aren't coming in. The videogames section is particularly notorious for this.

My latest fic for Tales of the Abyss started off positive last year, plenty of hits and a decent number of reviews, but then they just stop... BUT the views continue to increase - it baffles me - even if an author has gone on hiatus for x months/years surely it'd at least be courteous to say SOMETHING. Without reviews, I can't tell if the demand is there, the aforementioned fic - hits 2422, Reviews 11 - wtf? Did 11 people like it and 2000~ hate it?

I don't hate a lack of reviews enough to pull my stories (as evidenced by a story of mine that, at the moment, has over 1,000 hits but still a grand total of 0 reviews or ratings), but they do drive me away from fandoms.

This is exactly what I mean - is it 1000 hits because people like it but are too lazy to review/rate. Authors spend hours writing these things, all we're asking for from the readers is a few seconds/minutes to write a few lines.

Due to the fact that there's no correlation between hits and reviews I honestly don't know how to proceed - do I get a high number of hits because people like my fics or do lots of people read a few lines then leave, hence no reviews. As I have no way to gauge interest in a particular fandom I've simply dropped & deleted a whole bunch of fics I was working on.

Makes me want to write a Harry Potter fic as a test just to see how many reviews / hits Ill get.

Yeah, I generally write one-shot lemons, but its still nice to have some consistency with the reviews to hits ratio. I'd even be willing to add chapters to my one-shots if I got more but whatever. *sigh* and people wonder why fics never get updated, in the end they've only themselves to blame when they drive the author mad.

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The videogames section is particularly notorious for this.

Well, a lot of gamers out there don't have much patience. 'Least that's what Bishop, the dude at the video store said.

(Sorry.)

Makes me want to write a Harry Potter fic as a test just to see how many reviews / hits Ill get.

In my experience, about 6 reviews and 10 ratings for about 7,000 hits.

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i have no excuse to use for myself because i'm guilty of a certain little bad habit i have, and i can't get too mad about people who don't review my own stories since i'm a reader and not all the time reviewer. it would be nice to say i have reviewed everything i have ever opened in my browser.

but i haven't. and a lot of the times, it's because i see a story at the top of the list of the stories and open it to have a look, especially because it's got a decent rating and a fair number of reviews. i look at the story and am absolutely appalled by the content within the story. so i click the back button. there's a hit, but no review.

i'm a firm believer that you should review a story you read. but sometimes, it's best to exercise the shining rule: 'if you've nothing nice to say, say nothing at all.' when i review, and it's not a great story but has potential, then i prefer the sandwich review technique. basically you say something nice to start things off, give your criticism, then finish off with something nice. it softens the blow, especially if you've a lot to say negatively about the story. generally, you should be able to find something positive about a story, regardless of anything else.

but, i have to say that perhaps some people click on stories and don't like what's going on within in so they hit the backspace. and that's okay, i suppose. it sucks, because it drives the hits up and kills the review/hits ratio, but it's best to have somebody look at the story, decide they don't like it, and leave it alone than to have somebody who is disgusted by your story and flame you.

however, when i do review, which is pretty frequently, i leave detailed reviews. as a beta reader, i feel it's important to tell people what they have done well, to tell people what i enjoyed within their story. it's also important to point out to somebody what i think could have been improved and what i would have liked to have seen. people post stories to make them better writers, that is my firm belief. and i want to do everything that i can to try to help them along.

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I just write for the joy of writing. Reviews and such are just peanuts and cherries on a really good sundae. And I mostly just write adult oriented material when I'm extremely stressed out, and it acts like a release. I'm not doing my hobby for the reviews but for myself. With two exceptions, I mostly write one shot stories. Multiple chapter stories, however, reviews do help because they let you know that someone is keeping up with your story.

I probably should give a review to the many, many stories I've read, but half the time I can't honestly think of anything important to say.... :unsure: "Nice story, keep at it" reviews are as worthless as "OMG you suck" flames. I give any story I've read I do give a rating however.

I think also that people are just as embarassed to admit they're reading and enjoying adult material just as much people are embarassed that they are writing it. People may not emotionally be ready to admit it in a review. Even with the anonymity of the internet, there's still that very, very human feeling of shame.

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Guest Zanthious

I'm new here, so I have yet to have as much of a problem with it as you guys that have been here a while, but if by views, you mean hits, then yes, I agree, it is disconcerting to see like 60 hits, and 1 or 2 reviews. It hits us in the pride we all fall victim to as writers. But I mean, there's nothing you can do about it, right?

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unfortunately, there's not really a lot that can be done. people will review if they want to, and they won't if they don't.

i do know that there's a review exchange thread in the review forum where you can post your story to have it reviewed. it basically works like this: you review somebody's story (and do more than good job, write more soon) and post one that you would like to have reviewed. somebody reviews it and puts their story up in reward for reviewing your story. that's a good way to try to get your reviews up.

but really, there's not a lot that can be done to increase your review ratio. unless you can make somebody start reviewing every story they read. (which would be wonderful, wouldn't it?)

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I've gotta say, in the process of cleaning UP the archive, I've noticed a very odd (to me) review trend. Fiction I'd never give a second glance to, that most would consider CRAP gets loads of reviews. Then, you have good fiction, has a good hit count, but very little in reviews.

So, I've decided when I go to look for stuff to read when I have some time free to do that again, that's going to be one of the things I'll be looking at before even clicking the story link. Because, chances are, I'll find something I like to read that way.

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I've given up on all telltale signs of a fic I might like. I've read terrible fics that have a pairing that I like, a great sounding summary, several hits and many reviews, so I don't think really is a formula. Mostly I read stuff with a specific pairing and bail the second I realize it's bad, but for that only works for people who have a lot of time on their hands. I think that bad fanfiction is like those dime a dozen comedy movies, you see the trailer and you know that it's stupid and a waste of money, but then you find out that it's raking in a big profit because, for some reason, people like to watch trash (like reality shows). I think that there should be a study on that... my sister would rather see some stupid comedy than a thought provoking, incredibly made film. I just don't understand it.

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Guest Zanthious

Some people just don’t want to be challenged mentally. They want the quick, no thought, cheap entertainment fix. And that’s just them though. I suppose everyone has a different reason for not posting a review, but in the end I guess from my point of view, it would be nice to have a higher ratio of reviews to hits, but at least they looked at it at least. Read it preferably, and liked it at best. I mean, we post our work here for others to see. It comes from our need as writers to have approval from others. We all crave it, and a lack of comments from people saying they liked it, or hell, even saying they didn’t, leaves us feeling a bit down. But at least in my case, at least I got over my "Stage fright" and posted it for people to see, and think whatever they want of it.

The main point I guess would be, that if we get upset, or let down about a lack of reviews, then who are we posting for, the readers, or us? If we’re posting for them, we succeeded as soon as it’s posted. It’s there and they can see it. But if we’re posting for us, then it’s natural to feel we failed, or fell short, or at times even wronged by the lack of feedback. I’s love to say that I post or the readers....But at the end of the day after I checked my page for the 10th time, I have to admit to being a bit more selfish than I thought. That’s just my opinion on it though... <_<

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Guest Savaial
I just write for the joy of writing. Reviews and such are just peanuts and cherries on a really good sundae. And I mostly just write adult oriented material when I'm extremely stressed out, and it acts like a release. I'm not doing my hobby for the reviews but for myself. With two exceptions, I mostly write one shot stories. Multiple chapter stories, however, reviews do help because they let you know that someone is keeping up with your story.

I probably should give a review to the many, many stories I've read, but half the time I can't honestly think of anything important to say.... :) "Nice story, keep at it" reviews are as worthless as "OMG you suck" flames. I give any story I've read I do give a rating however.

I think also that people are just as embarassed to admit they're reading and enjoying adult material just as much people are embarassed that they are writing it. People may not emotionally be ready to admit it in a review. Even with the anonymity of the internet, there's still that very, very human feeling of shame.

I too, write for the joy of writing. It is satisfying to write for oneself. Still, if you EDIT, beta and comb over your writing, get it polished and in a condition you feel is good for others to see it, when you get hits and no reviews, it is apt to make you quit posting.

I understand that there are people that feel their reviews are "stupid" or "not helpful", but the reader needs to understand that there really isn't such a thing to the author.

Take the Originals section, for instance. Some of these people submit their work in the hopes that they will get unbiased opinions, in the hopes that they can perfect their art. To get one review out of one hundred hits doesn't help. It makes them less apt to post. After all, they've spent countless hours going over their work with a fine tooth comb to get thier story up and read. If they get nothing back, what's the motivation?

There is no such thing as a dumb review. Even the bad ones let an author know where the weak points may lie. Most authors on this site are so thrilled to know someone actually read their work, they don't care if the review is a single sentance.

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Heh. As a newbie, I'm discovering I'm in that peculiar purgatory of writing fanfic based on characters whose fanbase, at least in the U.S., is pretty danged small. So that already narrows down my "walk-in" audience, so to speak. Even more challenging is that I'm writing a fic that, while it has smutty bits in it, is not primarily about the smut -- not that there's anything wrong with a good raunchy hunk o' PWP, far from it; it's just that I don't happen to be inspired to do that right now with this piece. So I suspect that people looking to get off are hitting my piece, going "where's the porn? I'm in two whole pages but nobody's gotten nekkid yet!" and wandering off in search of more, erm, immediate gratification ... :D

(Maybe I'm misunderstanding the rating system and mis-setting people's expectations? I dunno ... )

Anyway, despite all that, I have gotten over 30 hits in just the week since I first started uploading chapters, which I tell myself is nothing to sneeze at. But I've yet to garner a single review or rating. I'm just sort of shrugging it off and going "oh well ... " But yeah--it's kind of discouraging. Right now, I'd even greet encouraging one-liners as a welcome sign of life. :)

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Guest MortiferLascivio

Views will ALWAYS outnumber reviews but sometimes it does bug me a little bit when I have like ten thousand views but only ten reviews. I have a multi-chaptered story going, thirty four chapters, and while I've recieved a decent hit/review ration on THIS site, on FF.Net I haven't even recieved an average of one review for every chapter I posted, which I find odd because normally I get more reviews there than here.

But I never stop writing, I don't even ask for reviews anymore, just a simple thank you to whoever reads and who will/has reviewed. I try not to let reviews me the only thing I write for, because they're not, and I try not to let a lack of reviews discourage me. I respect if someone wants to be a silent reader, because really, actual published author's don't get reviews for every chapter of their books, or a full critique by each reader when it's over. If they live with the fact that there's thousands out there reading their story and not knowing what they really think, then so can we.

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Guest CrisNoWait
I don't really mind, as long as people read my stories.

I really do not mind if readers have anything to say, I write because the story is spilling out my head. When I first published my story, it took a week before anyone even viewed it, then I had a faithful 3 follow for the 1st month. I learned for myself not to hang too much credit/blame/concern on what comments stalkers make. The views are what keep me happy. Now as a reader, I can relate with fans/readers that do not comment. I personally always do, post a comment, because I love doing so. However look at my name, I get frustrated to fall in lust with a work that then dies...never to be updated again.

B) That is the other side of reviews, readers want consistant updates. They do not need to be fast as long as they are reliable. Also some readers may not know how to express, what they want to say clearly. There may be dozens of reasons, personally I try to avoid stories that do not have a regular history of updates. Especially if its long.

What should I do take a week or two reading 25+ chapters just to find the last update was a year ago... This is upsetting, to fans. So I understand why some may not comment. I enjoy comments as much as the next writer but I try to make it clear to my readers, my story is as much for me as for them so enjoy reading comment if you wish but I will not strong arm my fans for written text in lieu of updates. :P

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To go with the rate button there oughta be a "I rubbed one out to this fic" Y/N/P (P for partial, didn't climax) button.

No?

...I'll get me coat

Oh man, I would LOVE this! Seriously, it's great hearing what readers think about my writing itself, but it would make me SO HAPPY if people were honest about whether my fic actually turned them on. Knowing I had that effect on someone would totally make my day. B)

Reviews are tricky. I try to leave them, but I'm not as good as I could be. I also agree with some other posters that the least someone can do is hit the rate button. I always rate, every single thing I read. Then at least the author knows you didn't just read two sentences and hit the back button.

Sometimes, the problem seems to be just a lack of exposure. I read and write mostly in Originals, so I can only speak to that, but I worry a little that there is almost too much sub-categorization there. Since the genres are pretty subjective, (unlike, say, pairings in a fanfic) people tend to congregate in a few areas, and the review counts in those places can be high. But if you really follow the subcats and post in the most appropriate place, sometimes your story will hardly be seen by anyone.

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I've gotta say, in the process of cleaning UP the archive, I've noticed a very odd (to me) review trend. Fiction I'd never give a second glance to, that most would consider CRAP gets loads of reviews. Then, you have good fiction, has a good hit count, but very little in reviews.

So, I've decided when I go to look for stuff to read when I have some time free to do that again, that's going to be one of the things I'll be looking at before even clicking the story link. Because, chances are, I'll find something I like to read that way.

This one drives me crazy too! I hate to see talented people not get any love. Sometimes, I think it can be partly intimidation, and I myself am guilty of that sometimes. I want to leave something more constructive than just 'this is amazing!' but, well, sometimes it just IS amazing.

Edited by pel

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Guest MortiferLascivio

Actually, the rate option bugs me a little because I never know if I should trust it. I'm pretty sure I have at least one person out there who stalks my stories and gives it really low ratings on purpose. Whenever I post a new story, within ten seconds of it being posted I always find it with a one star rating. It's really odd. I could be wrong and someone just doesn't like my story, but still, it's weird.

And people could use it just to spite a writer and then other people won't read a story because it has a low rating so they think it's not very good. Yeah, I never really liked that little rating thing. I know when I see a two star story, I don't want to read it but it could have been a really good one.

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Now I know, early on in a story's existance, that it's hard to tell how many reviews you're getting because you go to see your story a couple of times, and people might be visiting more than once.

But still, there's three views and I know I haven't gone there yet (I'm here at the moment) so at least one person has viewed it three times, but they still haven't bothered to review.

My favorite reviews are long constructive criticism reviews. My least favorite are reviews with nothing but "Update! Update now!" or worse than that, "I like this fanfic but why aren't you updating your other fics?"

Buddy, can you see the 'co-written' tag at the top? I can't just magic my co-writer into being. Sometimes I get distracted by other things. I've got three other stories going right now and you know that; even I, who sit at this computer for 14 hours a day, have a limit to how much time I can spend writing. I can't conjure five A4 pages of sex out of thin air; this is a COMPUTER I'm working on.

My mind, which thinks about sex ALL THE FREAKING TIME, is TRYING to get the story to that sex scene you want to see so badly. Sure, I could just sit down, write a fuck, and post it, but that would SUCK ASS.

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Lack of reviews makes me think that readers aren't interested in a story. Page views don't mean anything, they could be readers who loaded up the story, got bored after a few paragraphs and then closed it, or browser refreshes, or even bots. Also, when there's no reviews, there can be no exchange of ideas. The readers are just passively absorbing the story, and the writer gets no feedback on which ideas were good, which were not.

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It takes little effort to read, but to review, one is force to actually think. Appariently most people don't like to think. I don't review stories I don't like because I don't want to give negative fed back to the author and discourage them, when they enjoy doing it... so let'em write and be happy. I give lots of reviews, but rarily negative one. Who am I to correct other people grammar and spelling when mine sucks too!

Be honest with yourself do you really appreciate negative reviews, even though you say you do... I often get discouraged and want to cry... and I appreciate the readers mercy.

One way to get them to response is to shock'em, tease'em or keep'em hanging with a cliff-hanger LOL... occasionally they will yell at you! But then you know they care!

So boys and girls have mercy for those numerious non-thinkers out there, perhaps that mental muscle is broken from daily wear and tear!

The compassionate Cal, the Assassin ^_^

See plot bunny hiding:

post-5594-1223764161_thumb.jpg

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Actually, the rate option bugs me a little because I never know if I should trust it. I'm pretty sure I have at least one person out there who stalks my stories and gives it really low ratings on purpose. Whenever I post a new story, within ten seconds of it being posted I always find it with a one star rating. It's really odd. I could be wrong and someone just doesn't like my story, but still, it's weird.

And people could use it just to spite a writer and then other people won't read a story because it has a low rating so they think it's not very good. Yeah, I never really liked that little rating thing. I know when I see a two star story, I don't want to read it but it could have been a really good one.

Yeah, I never really like that thing, either. The low ratings are actually worse than negative or non-constructive reviews, in my opinion. And if you see a one-star story getting great reviews, even constructive ones, you're gonna think, hm, something's not right here... Oh, and I'm sure we've all seen a five-star story with awesome reviews--eleventy billion of them but the story itself is absolute crap.

Myself, I tend to get a little worried when people aren't reviewing my stories. It could mean that people are only looking at it because it somehow ended up on Godawful Fanfics or being MSTed or some shit. Or people just clicked on it because they liked the title and summary, but since I like uncommon pairings, they'll turn away, regardless of the content.

But, I don't want to criticise too much on reviewers, since they could be shy, like me. Or maybe they feel too much pressure from the authors who bellow in their ANs that they only want constructive, page-long reviews, and well, we're busy people. This is only a hobby. I know we've got a lot of seasoned people here, but no one's getting paid for doing this stuff.

So, yeah, this is a good way to console myself. I'm not getting paid (else I'd get the pants sued off me), so there's really no pressure. And if my story's in progress, I can understand that people will want to wait until it's finished so they can actually write their thought-out review, and maybe even recommend my story.

Yeah, sorry this was so convoluted.

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