No_1

Fustration of a Non-Writer

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Hi

I don't generally write much fanfiction, oh I do write, including erotic.... ok, smutty stuff, but that's in a private setting where it isn't available for the public and for my own enjoyment, and the enjoyment of those who I collab/RP with. Primarily my fiance (we're in a long distance relationship).

What I am on the other hand is an avid reader of fanfiction, both smutty and not. And in both Adult Fanfiction and Non-Adult I tend to make requests for content I want to see. Heck if you look at my profile most of my topics are challenges. I have those things that I find arousing, such as BDSM, Pet-Play, Humiliation and Futa, and want to see certain characters in certain situations, this is to an extent normal.

I would write them myself, and heck, even if others enjoyed them, I find little enjoyment writing fanfiction that is then put out for others to read, and for the most part no enjoyment reading them back unless I have a co-writer like with my RPing on private sites.

But I always have two problems, the first is when nobody responds to my challenge, but to be honest there is nothing I can do, and no one to blame, it's to an extent annoying but is unavoidable.

The other one is when people will show interest in responding to a challenge, maybe they even start planning or write a little bit, but then stop. I have a problem in real life with being extremely blunt, which causes trouble with many people, and I have a problem with being pushy. So I'm always too worried about upsetting someone to often ask about something.

Let's take a recent example of both issues, of course nothing can be done about the former so consider this just a plug of my challenges.

I made four challenges in one go, one in Harry Potter involving Futas, one in DC with Wonder Woman again involving futas, one in Street Fighter which was primarily a fluffy Femslash fic, and one in Naruto which was a Dom/Sub story, and none of them have been replied to. As for views, well DC and Game requests aren't common so those two understandably only have 8 (SF) and 20 (DC) views at this point, so I don't expect replies. The Harry Potter one has 33 and the Naruto one 50, again not really that high in terms of numbers so I shouldn't expect responses, and I'm kinda rambling so I'll get to the latter point.

The one that to an extent concerns and irks me is my Kunoichi Sex Training Request. This was the first request I made and it shocked me how quickly I got quite a bit of interest. With two different people asking about it, and one (a guest named Some_Perv_) wrote a very large amount about the universe he appeared to intend to base the story in.

It was lengthy and even included what seemed to be a quick draft of the first chapter. This was three weeks ago tomorrow and I was very excited at the time to read it. At this point I'm still excited but I'm worried that nothing seems to be coming of it, especially since he's a guest. But I feel far too pushy when I consider asking, I'm also worried I managed to annoy or offend him in some way, or he's simply not interested and thus not going to continue it. While I'll of course accept it and not be too upset if he decides not to write it I'm currently in that state of limbo/not knowing

Am I just being pushy/stupid?

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Speaking as a writer, there are a great many things that can slow down my writing. While in a perfect world, I would wander into my little den at around noon and not emerge until eight in the evening, with five thousand solid words under my belt, that remains a fantasy.

Reality is that I have a family, and real life is chaotic at best and downright mindboggling as a rule. I might get one or two hours a day to write, and that has to encompass what I write, and my research. I'm a fiend for details and accuracy, and it may only get one or two lines, but I will look up the type of fruits that would have been freely available in the month of June in 4th Century CE Wales. Nothing is more jarring than to be immersed in a word and find a glaring error. I still can't read Shakespeare's Coriolanus to this day thanks to that damned clock.

Still, those couple of hours can be exceedingly productive, IF my muses are talking to me. If they're not, well, no amount of prodding, bribery, chocolate or caffeine is going to make me write. In fact, the best thing I can do then is to pick up a book and read. Let other people's words fill me for a while. It's amazing how that can restore my own creativity.

The author who accepted this challenge might be going through some real-life things that are slowing them down. They could be at a small plot point that won't quite fall into place. They might be researching, which could involve watching the anime or reading the manga. They could be involved in registering for the fall semester at their college or university.

It's not a process that can always fit into neat time slots, this writing thing we do. But if they gave you an email address or IM contact info, and seemed open to being contacted, then you can certainly reach out. Otherwise, I'd counsel patience. Writers are oddly skittish beings. :D

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I will also add to this that back on April 5, I decided to accept a challenge from here in the forums. Not wanting to disappoint, I didn't post right away that I was going to attempt to fulfill it. It took me until June 23 before I posted the first chapter. I have yet to update the story, though I did write a second response to the challenge on July 1 in order to sate the requester for a period. ;)

As she (the requester) has been a writer for many years, she's aware that it can take time for the muse to move you. This particular muse hides in one of the darker corners.

It also doesn't help that I'm watching Quantum Leap and a plunnie for Warehouse 13 jumps up and bites my ankle, all while I'm thinking about the next step I need to take on my Labyrinth and Rambo stories. So I open a text file, quickly jot down the W13 plunnie, and by the time I'm done, the one muse has gone back into the corner, and the other one has walked off in a huff of arrogance at being ignored.

So, into the void walks an idea that makes my mutant mega-plunnie look like a gerbil baby, and - me being me - I look at the idea, turn it over a bit, and "Ooooooh" is the only thing that comes to mind as the full impact of it coalesces into something workable.

It might sound a bit like ADD (it does to me, anyway), but it's more the reality that just as you don't have any control over when a muse comes and goes, you also don't have any control over when a new muse pops into your life. And just like the people we meet in the real world, some call on us more often than others.

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I don't think you're being pushy at all. It is hard sometimes to float a successful challenge. As an entity who both accepts and issues challenges, allow me to voice my opinion and experiences?

First off, the most successful challenge stories I have all resulted from a personal challenge that was issued directly to me, and only me. A reader/fellow writer mentioned that they would like to read "x" and "y" in a story. We hashed out the details and I went to work.

In return, the challenges I issued worked almost the same way, although most of my challenges ended up being round robin or open ended stories, The Seven Deadly Sins being an exception.

Writing is an extremely subjective process. Even the tiniest of interference, seemingly inconsequential to everyone else, can throw a writer's groove into the trash bin.

My advice is to be patient, encouraging, and wait.

Yes, Rogue, I am a patient witch. :D

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Rogue, I don't feel you're being pushy or bitchy either. When someone volunteers or says they are going to do something, I kind of expect them to...you know, do something for it, but that's just me. However, I do have patience and I do understand that life gets in the way, that people have families, jobs, things that pop up out of their control, so on and so forth. Now, I also am a firm believer that if you have a minute out of your day to email, message or somehow get ahold of whoever it is you said you'd write for, then you should at least do that. It's common courtesy. A quick: "Hi there! I'm really sorry I haven't been on lately/unable to keep in touch, but I'm still alive and I'm still planning on writing such and such," or something to that extent. I also believe that asking cannot hurt as long as you're not pushy about it. Something like: "Hey, how's it going? I haven't heard from you in a little while and I was just wondering if you're doing alright. Has there been any progress on the challenge? I hope to hear back from you soon, blah blah blah..." I mean, if you don't ask, you may not know for a while. At least if you take it into your own hands, you'll get your answer (eventually, even if you don't get one that's still an answer that they're quite obviously busy and/or have forgotten/lost interest...)

Edited by Bun

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Speaking from my own experience, it can be difficult to get around writer's block and life, especially in combination. Writer's block, for me, is something that requires either another muse to appear...or someone to play sounding board and help me demolish the wall while we play verbal wall ball. And we all know how life is.

Also, if this author is creating an alternate universe or reality, he/she could be deciding how many details from actual Naruto-verse to keep in, and which. Speaking as someone who writes both AU and AR stories, it's a lot of work to find the right balance and it can take a long while, however much we'd all prefer it didn't. Still, if the story is worth writing, it's worth taking the time to do right.

In the meanwhile, sometimes what an author needs is the offer of support--and maybe to know somebody, somewhere, is looking forward to reading what they're working on, however long it takes and whatever interferes along the way.

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Okay, just hear out my bitchy pushy self for a sec.

You say you're a writer, but not really, but you do write, but you'd rather not, etc. Well, guess what kid: if you write--regardless of what the subject matter is--then you are, by definition, a writer. Deal with it.

If you haven't already, maybe you could jot down some ideas or snippets of what you'd like to see, then post it with 'let-others-edit-this-story' settings. That way there is a little more to work with than just what subject matter you'd like to see. Does that make sense?

It might sound a bit like ADD (it does to me, anyway), but it's more the reality that just as you don't have any control over when a muse comes and goes, you also don't have any control over when a new muse pops into your life. And just like the people we meet in the real world, some call on us more often than others.

I couldn't have said it better myself, Rogue.

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