Tcr

Shaping Your Writing: Does a Lack of Feedback Affect Yours?

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Alright, so, as the title says, does a lack of feedback affect your stories?  (Ie while you’re writing, does the lack of feedback make you change things, doubt things, et cetera, et cetera?  And vice versa, does a lot of feedback affect you?  Do you change things that you probably wouldn’t have based upon those words?)  This is probably a question that’s been asked before, don’t throw the pineapples (they kind of hurt), but…

As for me, so far I’d say not really (in terms of changing things that otherwise wouldn’t have been).  The lack of feedback on a lot of mine does make me question certain decisions, as I’m sure everyone does when faced with that same thing…  For example, I know people are reading them (...unless they’re accidentally clicking into it and getting out of there as fast as possible…  I’m going with the former, though), but lately I’ve been debating the… slow burn of one of them…  Introducing and trying to create likeable characters that everyone wants to see survive through with the interactions that ring true necessitated the long fuse to the dynamite, and it’s been making me question that length.  I’m sure everyone has something like that.

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Absolutely, lack of feedback makes me change stuff! Sometimes the change is as simple as pulling the story. Sometimes it gets more complicated as I attempt to read the minds of readers to figure out what the problem was. And seeing as how I’m a pretty shitty psychic, I end up changing a lot of things in a panic until the story is unrecognizable or just not what I wanted to begin with soooo either way it’s usually a terrible decision on my part lol. But doubt does that to me. Makes me make terrible decisions.

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I actually changed a story I was publishing because my editor thought it needed some things to make it more, I don’t know, appealing, or relevant, or engaging. I forget the word exactly. But the changes never felt right to me, and now that the book’s been accepted for republication, I went back and deleted all the stuff I added at that editor’s urging. The thing is, I never really got feedback from readers non this book, so I have no real idea if they liked those bits or hated them, but I’m much happier with the manuscript without them, so… I’m taking a deep breath and going with my gut.

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I don’t change things due to lack of feedback. I just meander away, unless I stop. Stopping with me usually doesn’t have to do with whether I get feedback or not and is for lots of other reasons. I may feel like stopping, but that’s different too. So lack of feedback – no effect whatsoever.

I will change a story due to feedback. Not because of complaints. The things I’ve written, I’ve developed a pretty tough skin as far as that is concerned. People with complaints can take a running jump. But… if I’m getting positive feedback, and I can sense the readers want something to happen, and I don’t mind going that way/writing it/taking a minor diversion then I’ll do it happily. I let the Elrond story go into incestuous slash, and I didn’t mind that at all. I enjoyed it too. I did a lot of Torchwood stuff on request for the forum I was involved in back then. I’ve got a chapter lined up for the Ai o Juten story that was written on request for a christmas present for someone. I have changed the ending of my current story to make it happy, though I still intend to go to the dark place. That is NOT up for negotiation. The only time that didn’t really work out was for the S&M story. I tried for a happy ending there. But it was impossible. He just… went back. I mean, obviously, I knew for a while he would go back, but still I had to write it out. To show it.

Long story short. I like to make people happy who make me happy. In fact, that’s when I like fanfic best, because it feels like it’s not just me. It feels collaborative. I’m just the writer, but lots of people are having input into the story/stories (whether they know it or not), and it’s kind of magical. :)

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Absolute lack, nothing to go on.  However, when it comes to dragon prints, or lack thereof, I’ll use those as reason to look at something again.  I reverted a story split awhile ago because of it, and overall, I think it’s stronger if I look at it from the original point of view, a never-ending sort of thing.

 

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Feedback use to effect me and how I would write a story.  I had one work called ‘The Gates of Heaven and Hell’ and it ended up with two split timelines – one that the readers seemed to like then the one that I originally envisioned.  Needless to say that the “favorite” version was never finished.  I lost interest even though readers seemed to like it because I wasn’t as invested in that storyline as I was in my original one.  That taught me an important lesson.  I think it’s a Catch-22.  It’s hard to find a balance between what you enjoy writing and what readers will enjoy.  If you aren’t happy then chances are the work won’t see a conclusion.  Plus, you have those readers who are ardent followers of a writer and will read anything and everything said writer publishes.  My process is different now.  I tend to write several chapters before I consider posting any work, and most of the time it doesn’t see the light of the internet.  LOL. 

Saying all that, I do have one work where I have had lots of reviews and that has encouraged me to continue writing, though things don’t get put out there as much.  And I do work collaboratively with other writers and readers.  There have also been suggestions (some in reviews and some emailed to me) that I have taken into consideration and even implemented into the work.  I believe that it’s based on a “case by case” scenario.  There are some stories that you create and don’t want to see major changes and then there are some that you feel free enough to take those risks.  I think it depends on how you feel about a work as to how it progresses, whether that is the pace of your writing or the plot of your story.

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12 minutes ago, yukihimedono said:

Feedback use to effect me and how I would write a story.  I had one work called ‘The Gates of Heaven and Hell’ and it ended up with two split timelines – one that the readers seemed to like then the one that I originally envisioned.  Needless to say that the “favorite” version was never finished.  I lost interest even though readers seemed to like it because I wasn’t as invested in that storyline as I was in my original one.  That taught me an important lesson.  I think it’s a Catch-22.  It’s hard to find a balance between what you enjoy writing and what readers will enjoy.  If you aren’t happy then chances are the work won’t see a conclusion.  Plus, you have those readers who are ardent followers of a writer and will read anything and everything said writer publishes.  My process is different now.  I tend to write several chapters before I consider posting any work, and most of the time it doesn’t see the light of the internet.  LOL. 

Saying all that, I do have one work where I have had lots of reviews and that has encouraged me to continue writing, though things don’t get put out there as much.  And I do work collaboratively with other writers and readers.  There have also been suggestions (some in reviews and some emailed to me) that I have taken into consideration and even implemented into the work.  I believe that it’s based on a “case by case” scenario.  There are some stories that you create and don’t want to see major changes and then there are some that you feel free enough to take those risks.  I think it depends on how you feel about a work as to how it progresses, whether that is the pace of your writing or the plot of your story.

I agree it’s kinda on a case by case, IMO. 

@Tcr mentioned lack of feedback, which is feedback itself, however, the lack is much harder to discern because there’s a TON of reasons for lack of feedback, and AFF readers, in general, tend not to give as many reviews per view as other websites.  In the absence of reviews, the dragon print counter is the only feedback I typically have, so I kinda measure “interest” by how much it jumps after I post.  In the case I mentioned, I tried splitting a story, based on a setting change, and the dragon prints kinda hinted that wasn’t a great move, so I backtracked.  As @BronxWench mentioned, though, sometimes a revision based on feedback might not be best for the story (and in that case, editor feedback carries more weight than a reviewer).

So, guess the moral is to take feedback with a grain of salt.  Some feedback, like grammar or ambiguity can be better to heed, while others (ie. the mating pairs of characters) might be better to simply thank for the feedback but otherwise not worry about.  In the absence of feedback, that’s when you should consider soliciting another opinion before completely rewriting or even pulling a story.

That’s my $0.02 worth.

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My mistake was listening to that editor, who was also doing a contemporary MF with some D/s tossed in, miles removed from my post-dystopian MM sequel. The characters were established in the first book, and it felt like I was supposed to rewrite them in the second book to conform to the other work she was editing.

On the bright side, I would up meeting a terrific photog in St. Petersburg, and using one of his models for the covers, so that was something. :D

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1 hour ago, BronxWench said:

My mistake was listening to that editor, who was also doing a contemporary MF with some D/s tossed in, miles removed from my post-dystopian MM sequel. The characters were established in the first book, and it felt like I was supposed to rewrite them in the second book to conform to the other work she was editing.

On the bright side, I would up meeting a terrific photog in St. Petersburg, and using one of his models for the covers, so that was something. :D

Yeah, that definitely feels like a structural change that I’d be hesitant on too.  For me, I try to understand the feedback, even using your case as an example, because there *could* be something amiss.  Small things like spelling, grammar, are things I’d mostly takethe hint on and fix as indicated.  Larger things, it depends.

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Editors are essential for things like making sure you haven’t dropped a thread, or messed up the chronology. They help with POV conflicts, and the overuse or outright abuse of words. I’d never want to put anything out there without editing, and without a separate proofreader for the grammar and punctuation stuff. But in the end, the story, and the voice, need to be mine. If the editor suggests a change that I don’t think fits, I can say no, which is the lesson I learned with that story. The re-release will be so much better. :D

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32 minutes ago, BronxWench said:

Editors are essential for things like making sure you haven’t dropped a thread, or messed up the chronology. They help with POV conflicts, and the overuse or outright abuse of words. I’d never want to put anything out there without editing, and without a separate proofreader for the grammar and punctuation stuff. But in the end, the story, and the voice, need to be mine. If the editor suggests a change that I don’t think fits, I can say no, which is the lesson I learned with that story. The re-release will be so much better. :D

I’ve considered self-pub, but then I’d have to worry about exactly that, an editor and that sort.  Think I’ll stick to AFF for the time being (however, if a publisher sees my work and is interested, message me :)  ).

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I find that it is as much the “quality” as the “quantity” that matters in reader feedback and “peer review.”  I have also not tried for ‘paying” publication of my fiction material.

A GOOD editor will help the writer produce their best possible work, and grow as a writer.

As for “here,” I’m not completely sure the readers are getting past the first chapter, since I’ve yet to receive a review.  None of my chapters are short.  The story was originally going to be a “one-shot” set in a nebulous “here” instead of its actual setting.  However, as I wrote, I began asking questions about my two first protagonists, and writing answers to those questions.

While I like favorable reviews from almost anyone, I tend to review the work as well as the “sense” in any critical reviews.  A writer who can actually write has much more standing than one whose work is itself tedious and unreadable.

I am writing here in part to grow my skills as a writer, and to do that, one needs feedback.

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Feedback affects my stories, but often in indirect ways.  Critical reviews don’t bother me the way they used to, partly because it’s often clear they are bringing some huge bias by what they say. I can’t stop that. One troll went away after I thanked them for a page length list of spelling and grammar. I got some outrage and anger on my first story, and I tried to diplomatically tell them to flake off when I calmed.  More recent I try to tag what might set people off, and haven't really had any  jerks in years.

Confused readers are either explained in a reply or I may make a fix. The last irate one came from when a reader thought my lead hated an entire class of people. I was already fice chapters ahead and I was confused. After a little back and forth when I asked what gave them that impression (many reviewers never reply when you do want to fix it) and it ended up being basically pronoun confusion. They thought the lead was hating the slaves, instead of the slavers. A couple chapters later they included a comment that they liked the changes.  One or two commenters, by their language they are very young or have developmental issues… so I’m just glad they’re reading, period.  And feedback comes in where I'm wondering if they read the story I wrote. An early confused person accused the story of a kink I would not write...

Sometimes I may do minor shifts if some feedback gives me an idea that sparkles. I don't make structural changes from feedback.

Selfpub is a blessing and a bane. there is no longer an excuse for a wannabe writer to complain about the pressure of finding a publisher. It is a lot more work today, even if you have a pub. I could not believe an aspiring writer couldn’t find any ideas… My files of ideas keep growing faster than I can write...

I adore insightful comments that a reader is thinking about events and what's happening off camera or might be coming. That they get the themes or subplots I’m building. I also really appreciate if someone points out an accidental grammar or spelling problem.

Feedback affects much more in longer stories. and hits aren’t really enough warm fuzzies for my muse. I’ve pulled very few stories, because of my own dislike or career plans.  One shots or three shots, I’m just not as emotionally invested in the feedback.   The bigger issue is that a total lack of feedback just kills my motivation to continue when the writing gets tough from block or RL. I had a DA2 story that just withered and died. I knew how it was ending the schroedinger’s viscount problem. No one else seemed to care enough to read for several chapters, so I didn’t care enough to write it. I have plenty of other ideas. (I’ve written about 200k in a different fandom since this)

= = =

On the good side I found out a college bud I lost touch with is a part-time editor, but I haven't decided how stalker or pitiful I want to appear when I ask.

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Definitely! I’d say that not getting feedback will affect not only ur motivation but ur writing skills too. If u don’t get constructive feedback you will never know if u did anything wrong or if u overlooked something or how to improve. I have to say that getting a beta improved my writing skills a ton! (thanks clovey and tcr) Not only cuz they fixed ma shit but they pointed out my mistakes and I could learn from them.

But yeah not getting any feedback has done a number on my motivation and I am no longer in any rush to finish any of my work or post it. I thought about the hook in my 1st chapter but I have to say I think it is sufficient enough for the story itself. The only other option would be changing the story which is the road I refuse to travel down. It’s not worth it for me.

The only advice I can give is check out if the summary and the hook in ur 1st chapter is sufficient

I gotta say it’s really sad that a lot of readers just don’t care enough to leave reviews. I’m was often guilty of this myself but now I try to be more active with stories I really like.

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@Wilde_Guess If you self pub, you’d be paying.  However, if you’re not too picky about quality and skip the editor, and it’s relatively inexpensive with something like CreateSpace (an amazon thing).

@Anesor A laundry list of spelling/grammar does mean they’re reading your story :)  Feedback, as a whole, means they’re interested.  As @Tcr stated, a lack of feedback can be nasty, and that’s when I use dragon prints as a fallback, as I figure a large jump in numbers between chapter/episode postings hints at some level of interest. 

@sweetmamajama  I try to review when I read.  I’m just more of a writer here as I find it more fun playing in my own sandbox.  I had a beta for a little while, but then she got busy and now I post without it.

 

 

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I’m going to be the fly in the ointment here, and comment on the notion of skipping an editor when self publishing. Unless you are supremely confident you can catch POV shifts, and have buttoned every thread up, unless you know you haven’t slipped in the chronology, and events take place in a reasonable/explainable span of time, unless you are self-aware enough to pick up on repetitive phrasing and overuse of certain words and phrases, you need an editor. (I tend to be vague about time lapses, and I’m insanely obstinate about abusing certain words myself. I try to make it up to my editor by being quick to turn around the comments, and not whine a lot about the work I need to do to fix my mess. ;) )

I like to check out new authors, and I do a lot of poking about on blogs and review sites, where I can see a bit of an excerpt. I might be captured by a summary, but when I read the excerpt, if I hit that wall because even in those roughly 500 words I encounter sloppy editing, I don’t buy that book. Why? Because sometimes the poor editing is enough to take me out of the story, and I wind up wanting to leave the author a review begging them to pull the book, and have it edited as a mercy to readers. I’m far less forgiving when I’m asked to pay for work that hasn’t seen a beta reader, much less an editor and proofreader. It’s unprofessional, and it’s sloppy to put a book out there, ask for my money, and give me something that looks like a first draft of a manuscript. I can read better here for free, thank you.

The preponderance of us in this thread write original work, which is why I’m sort of focusing on this. Self publishing is not a bad thing, but having a bad review or sharp concrit here is one thing. Having it happen on Amazon is crushing for authors who could be really good, with some editing and polishing.

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35 minutes ago, BronxWench said:

I’m going to be the fly in the ointment here, and comment on the notion of skipping an editor when self publishing. Unless you are supremely confident you can catch POV shifts, and have buttoned every thread up, unless you know you haven’t slipped in the chronology, and events take place in a reasonable/explainable span of time, unless you are self-aware enough to pick up on repetitive phrasing and overuse of certain words and phrases, you need an editor. (I tend to be vague about time lapses, and I’m insanely obstinate about abusing certain words myself. I try to make it up to my editor by being quick to turn around the comments, and not whine a lot about the work I need to do to fix my mess. ;) )

 

I’m not a fool who’d skip an editor with my works for publishing, though I’m sure there’s plenty in the self-pub world.  (CreateSpace does offer an “editing” package .. though I’d probably be a little bit more picky on editors.) 

I’m not sure if/when I’ll make the jump into publishing, that’s kinda where it comes to the feedback thing @Tcr mentioned, if I’m not getting feedback when it’s free, is it worth paying for an editor and putting it out there on amazon?

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I have no problem with “self-publishing.”  It also used to be called “vanity publishing,” and for good reason.  While I might possibly go that route, or at least won’t refuse to do so, I will NOT publish anything where money is involved without a DAMN GOOD editor getting my work up to it’s best.  If I were to submit a work to a literary agency, publishing house, etc; I would have it edited FIRST just to have a “fighting chance” with THEIR editors.

I don’t currently have a “beta reader,” but that is more by happenstance than choice.  And, I’m still chasing the occasional missed word, doubled punctuation, and so on.

Which gets back to the original point of the thread, I suppose.  Quality feedback is important, especially on a site like this.

Edited by Wilde_Guess

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There’s a very strange correlation I’ve noticed over the years when it comes to reading on a free archive. Unless you make it almost stupidly easy and nearly unavoidable to leave feedback, readers won’t bother. I’m going to hazard a few guesses as to why.

First, I think most readers don’t really know what sort of feedback to leave. They see writers grumbling about the “Loved it! Write more!” reviews which don’t offer the writer a clue as to what the reader loved about a story, or chapter, but at least affirm someone read it and liked it.

Second, it could be where and/or when the reader is reading your work. On the way to work? Right before bed? Maybe it’s not a good time to leave a comment, and the reader plans to come back later and review, and… I am personally guilty of this one.

Third, the Review [insert story name] link is at the bottom of each chapter, but it’s small, and easily missed. It’s also frequently confused with the Report Story link, as I can attest based on the number of reviews I get in the guise of abuse reports. And yes, I do ask the reporter to leave the comment as a review for the author, but I can’t do it myself, sadly.

And finally, people like quick buttons. The “Like” buttons on FB and Twitter have conditioned people to want to be able to just leave that instant feedback. It’s fast and requires no thought. We had a ratings feature here, but because it was scaled, it was abused more often than it should have been by readers voting down a story because it wasn’t the One True Ship, or other nonsense. I personally would be fine with a button which only records a “like” or “recommend” on a story. If you don’t like it, there’s no option for abuse. You simply don’t click.

One factor I don’t think really matters is the notion of allowing anonymous reviews. It’s an account-wide choice here, so you can’t cherry-pick which stories on which to allow anon reviews. Allowing them opens you to trolls and flamers, and disallowing them discourages readers who aren’t logged in, or who might not even have archive profiles. But I think it is probably the least relevant factor in getting feedback.

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54 minutes ago, Wilde_Guess said:

I have no problem with “self-publishing.”  It also used to be called “vanity publishing,” and for good reason.  While I might possibly go that route, or at least won’t refuse to do so, I will NOT publish anything where money is involved without a DAMN GOOD editor getting my work up to it’s best.  If I were to submit a work to a literary agency, publishing house, etc; I would have it edited FIRST just to have a “fighting chance” with THEIR editors.

I’m scratching my head, exactly what are things like CreateSpace called, a self-publisher-assistant?  Whatever they’re called, it’s technically possible not to pay anything to publish, they’ll charge a fee per book and pay you the rest.  However, I’d most certainly do the whole edit cycle, and register the copyright.   To me, taking time to revise and edit, sounds boring when I could be writing new material.  I’m guessing the revision/edit/publish will more likely be undertaken by my next of kin than by me.  (After all, the writing is a hobby, not a profession, so I want to have fun!)

@BronxWench  Yep, I remember the ratings, and I had that serial downvoter (seemingly downvoting out of spite), I was pretty close to giving up over it.  We do need a fast like system (w/o the dislike), as it’s tough to discern the why with no feedback.  I mean, my story Jefferey is the highest in dragon prints (over 5600), but only one review.  I do make a point of reviewing the halloween/holiday round robins – this past holiday only has two posted reviews.

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You can do the whole CreateSpace thing for free, absolutely. But that brings you back to readers being irate about spending money for a hard copy of an unedited book. They’ll leave cranky reviews, and since CreateSpace isn’t offering books through their own online store anymore, it means those cranky reviews will be on Amazon, its parent company and now sole distribution hub.

Revising and editing are not the “fun” part of writing, to be sure. The first time is like cold water in the face. You’ve sold this manuscript to a publisher, and no matter how small the press, it’s pretty exciting. Then you get the first round of edits, and you wonder why they even took the book, if so much was wrong with it. 

But here’s the thing. As the writer, you know what you want to say, and you have this whole world in your head. You think you’ve put it all down for the reader, but guess what? You left out whole bits you think are obvious, but which aren’t to readers, including your editor. Or you’ve gone into such exhaustive detail, your editor fell asleep during the painfully precise description of the outfit your MC is wearing (right down to the designer brands) which took fifteen paragraphs over two and a half pages. You want to be sure they have that picture in their heads, too, but the readers have already put the book down.

I had an editor comment to me, “They drink a lot of tea.” I looked, and sure enough, every time my characters needed to talk about something, they had a cup of tea while talking. The poor bastards were floating in tea. It was just so overdone as to be sort of a joke by the midpoint of the story, and it was taking away from the real point of the discussion, because tea, again?!? It made sense to me for them to be doing something while talking, but I was wrong, and I spent a good deal of time editing that out.

Every time I’m facing edits, I remind myself that Stephen King gets edited, too, and I’ll bet he doesn’t let Molly (aka The Thing of Evil) bite his editor, either. :lol:

Edited by BronxWench

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4 hours ago, BronxWench said:

And finally, people like quick buttons. The “Like” buttons on FB and Twitter have conditioned people to want to be able to just leave that instant feedback. It’s fast and requires no thought. We had a ratings feature here, but because it was scaled, it was abused more often than it should have been by readers voting down a story because it wasn’t the One True Ship, or other nonsense. I personally would be fine with a button which only records a “like” or “recommend” on a story. If you don’t like it, there’s no option for abuse. You simply don’t click.

I’m not discounting the rest of your post, but as a twitter conditioned person this really spoke to me! AFF, give me a heart to click!

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Thing is, affording an editor is prohibitive for me. I just don’t have it, nor am I likely to have it in the foreseeable future. I’d love one, because I can almost see the edges of problems. Finding betas has also been a problem, the ones accepting new projects at a meet place seem to be newer writers than me, finding only typos. One way to really, really kill my muse is to have stories just sitting around waiting for a second opinion/editing. And running through it over and over for typos and grammar kills any life in the tale. I’ve got two Nano original novels stalled at that point.  I used to have up to two betas at a time, but RL and time take that. For fanfic, I clean it up as best I can. 

But I have seen abysmally bad proofreading in fanfic and profic. And lately it is patently clear which people are using voice input by the wacky similar words and dropped suffixes in their story. (insider<>initiate, not like they were suppose to)  Sometimes they note betas, and I want to weep. And  when I see it in major authors or from a major publisher it’s worse. Read older books and there were fewer, so I think it’s industry wide. Some big authors are reputed to have ditched editing, I can’t verify as I don’t read them.

I’m hoping to find a beta or editor, but if the choice is putting out with some errors and not publishing at all, I’ll put it out and let the devil take the hindmost.

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4 minutes ago, Anesor said:

Thing is, affording an editor is prohibitive for me. I just don’t have it, nor am I likely to have it in the foreseeable future. I’d love one, because I can almost see the edges of problems. Finding betas has also been a problem, the ones accepting new projects at a meet place seem to be newer writers than me, finding only typos. One way to really, really kill my muse is to have stories just sitting around waiting for a second opinion/editing. And running through it over and over for typos and grammar kills any life in the tale. I’ve got two Nano original novels stalled at that point.  I used to have up to two betas at a time, but RL and time take that. For fanfic, I clean it up as best I can. 

But I have seen abysmally bad proofreading in fanfic and profic. And lately it is patently clear which people are using voice input by the wacky similar words and dropped suffixes in their story. (insider<>initiate, not like they were suppose to)  Sometimes they note betas, and I want to weep. And  when I see it in major authors or from a major publisher it’s worse. Read older books and there were fewer, so I think it’s industry wide. Some big authors are reputed to have ditched editing, I can’t verify as I don’t read them.

I’m hoping to find a beta or editor, but if the choice is putting out with some errors and not publishing at all, I’ll put it out and let the devil take the hindmost.

In a nutshell, that’s the biggest issue—the cost. I’m pathologically stupid when it comes to any sort of graphics, but I know people, yourself included, who can do brilliant cover art. I can handle formatting a document, and I’m fairly decent at grammar and punctuation. But I need that editor, and the only way I can afford it is to publish via a small press, and have their editor review it. Yes, I share royalties with the publisher, but I get the editing I need, and the cover art I can’t do to save my life. It seems fair to me, and either way, I’m going to have to market the daylights out of myself once more. I’ll do my bit and work hard, and be grateful for the editing. 

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4 minutes ago, BronxWench said:

In a nutshell, that’s the biggest issue—the cost. I’m pathologically stupid when it comes to any sort of graphics, but I know people, yourself included, who can do brilliant cover art. I can handle formatting a document, and I’m fairly decent at grammar and punctuation. But I need that editor, and the only way I can afford it is to publish via a small press, and have their editor review it. Yes, I share royalties with the publisher, but I get the editing I need, and the cover art I can’t do to save my life. It seems fair to me, and either way, I’m going to have to market the daylights out of myself once more. I’ll do my bit and work hard, and be grateful for the editing. 

Yep, it’s the cost that makes me question whether to publish or not.  I see some mention of people hiring an editor before submitting to a publisher, but that has me wondering why bother with a regular publisher if I pay the biggest part myself.

 

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