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  1. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Reviewing Frustrations

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Cogito, Sep 16, 2007.

    I saw a discussion this morning expressing frustration with reviewing:
    I have felt this frustration, too. Now part of it is that we are getting a lot of new members posting into the Review Rooms, so there is a lot of material for each reviewer to look through. But part of it is that people don't want to make a mistake, or don't know where to start:
    I can relate. I tend to avoid screenplays and scripts because there are special considerations I just know nothing abouit. But I am wrong to do so.

    Maybe I don't know how to frame a scene, or the conventions for stage directions, but I can and should comment on plot, character development, dialog. Little by little, I can learn the rest by reading what reviewers like mammamaia have to say.

    We should try, even if we are less than confident about our ability. That's how we learn.
     
  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    This is a constructive suggestion, and no apologies need be made for what preceded it either.

    This is a large part of why Lpspider has been working on a reviewingh template, and put rules in place to require reviews before posting new material. It is why I started a Reviewing forum, and why Hulls Raven suggested the ARP experiment.

    We aren't doing as well on reviewing as we could. That isn't a condemnation, it just means that we need to put the same kind of effort into it as we put into improving our writing. No difference.

    When I started here, I skimmed over the poetry section. Poetry wasn't my thing, and it still isn't a form I'm particularly adept in. But I try, and I'm learning; a little here, a little there.

    We try, we learn. Sometimes we fall flat on our faces. But if we don't try, we get nowhere.

    If we are writers, we also are reviewers. We have to be.
     
  3. Heather Louise
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    Heather Louise Contributing Member Contributor

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    ok, i am sorry that things are a little slow and that but we get the point, we need reviewing. we do not need more and more post pressuring us into doing it to be hinest. shouldn't this pot be like in the reviewing section of the forum or something. like i said, people have things to do, school and collage has started again so that takes up time and people come on here when they have spare time which some people just don't ahve at the minute.

    a lot of us are trying so can we please just stop going on about it. i joined this site to enjoy myself a bit, read others work, post some of my work and talk to a few new people, not to be nagged at all the time about reviewing.

    sorry if i am out of order saying this but it is really grating on me at the moment.
    Heather
     
  4. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    You needn't take offense, Heather. I see you making an effort too, even with your school schedule ramping up. But surely you must feel frustrated too that there always seems much too much for you to keep up with, and you see many poems and stories that either aren't reviewed at all, or given one-liners that say little more than "Nice job."
     
  5. Heather Louise
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    Heather Louise Contributing Member Contributor

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    yes, i know what you meant. it is just annoying when everywhere you look there are more people complaining about reviewing. this is meant to be a laugh, not a chore. i know where you are coming from and that and i agree that people need to put a little more effort into reviewing but going on and on isn't going to help. i know out of common curteousy that if someone reviews a peice of mine and puts a bit of effort into it then i will return the favour, which i think more people might do. so people who do not review with effort might find that people are not reviewing there work. have you ever thought that the people with no or little reviews are the ones that do not put any effort into reaviewing others work? i am not sure if that is the case but i gets on my wick when new members post like ten peices of their work all at once, say something like "was good" on everyone else's and then expect in-depth reviews on their own. i say if they do that, do not review there's. that'll teach 'em.
     
  6. adamant
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    adamant Contributing Member Contributor

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    If it doesn't apply to you, then don't worry about it -- it's as simple as that. Also, I believe that most people won't review the work of someone that gives a one-liner, though this is not always the case.
     
  7. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Or at least they end up at the long end of the queue.
     
  8. Raven
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    Raven Banned

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    The trouble is a lot of members just want to post their work up and sit back and wait for the comments. Well it’s frustrating. If you want someone to critique you're work then you should also show the same courtesy and review critique give feed back to others. It’s all a little give and take. Its fair and its not much considering you want others to take the time to read and give feedback on your work. So courtesy is do the same please.

    It helps when we all work together.





    ~Raven.
     
  9. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    There are times I wish the Review Rooms were called something else, like the Writers Workshop or the Dissection Suite. We need to dispel the idea that it is primarily a showcase to display great work.

    Much of what gets posted, I honestly believe is not put there for critique so much as to collect "Oh wow!" comments. The primary symptom seems to be that the author never returns after receiving suggestions. There was one new joiner who received a couple unenthusiastic responses, and I received a PM requesting my perspective "because I was older" (and presumably more likely to catch some of the attempts at retro humor). My review was delivered by return PM because I did not wish to publically humiliate him further. He has not been back since.

    Maybe that's a good use for blogs though, for members to present their best work.
     
  10. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    To be completely honest, when I post stuff up, I don't want glowing compliments. I want it to be torn to shreds, because if I post something I'm usually not happy with it and I want some real advice.
     
  11. Eoz Eanj
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    Eoz Eanj Contributing Member Contributor

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    Funny enough I've recently written a blog in my xanga about my frustration with the 'reviewing' system. For the sake of repeating myself I may as well just post the blog.

    And just to let you know, this wasn't written to hurt anyone's feelings but to vent my accumulated anger...

    Christ the some of people on my forum piss me off.

    Especially the reviews they give on poetry.

    “Eh- this piece was good, good imagery and delivery and narration ...”

    Pft. Do you even have the slightest idea about what the piece is about in the first place? I strongly believe that if I wrote a poem, say, all about bestiality, as long as it was worked complexly, with large words and an obscure use of syntax, very few would be able to identify its topic and thus, in ignorance, give high praise to it.

    Fair enough you’re not born to critically analyse literature, good reason, point taken, but in all justice don’t just waltz into a review pronouncing all common of understanding when in actual fact you have no fn idea about what the piece is discussing.

    God, even if you seriously don’t get the piece, that’s fine! Claim that you don’t get the piece, ask for help to further understanding, that and/or educate yourself in literary technique so that you maybe able to, in the least, speculate about the ideas that a text is presenting. I'm so sick of people posting comments like, 'Yeah this was done really well.. yeah bye', would it kill you to attempt to elaborate or at least give explanation as to why you think it was 'done really well', is that what you really think? This just doesn't go for myself but everyone who posts their work, do not be afraid to say what you're thinking (as long as it is justified I suppose) and if you have trouble expressing so ask for some help, that's another purpose of the reviewers, to help you understand not just to crit your work. Also, I honestly don't think anyone will get better if their crit consists of drops of candy, meaning, don't just hand out praise like lollies, it gets old and it encourages mediocrity, which is not something anyone should aim for!

    Personally I think a 'help I don't understand wtf this piece is on about' guide thread needs to be constructed and personally I'm feeling more compelled to write on everyday, I've even asked for handouts and advice from my english teacher!
     
  12. Domoviye
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    Domoviye Contributing Member

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    I second this idea.
     
  13. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    We have a Reviewing forum now in Writing Issues - Go ahaead and start a thread there. I think it's a great topic.
     
  14. Domoviye
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    Domoviye Contributing Member

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    You mean you actually expect me to help solve my own problem!
    Slave driver.
     
  15. The Freshmaker
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    The Freshmaker <insert obscure pop culture reference> Contributor

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    I've been trying to do some reviews lately. Not as many as I would like, since my computer is out of commission. But I do try to thoroughly review stuff that has 0 replies, or where no one has posted anything helpful.

    I can't do poetry, though. Poetry frustrates me. I don't like reading it, and I don't even want to attempt to review it. If I did, I would probably get banned for being mean.
     
  16. Raven
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    Raven Banned

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    This is something I agree with you on.
    When I post fiction I usually need help with something that i can't see or have completely missed. And in the past the good reviews have really helped. We learn more from reviews that constructively break down everything we have written because those reviews are the ones that steer us in the right direction the next time we begin to write.

    You wouldn't get banned but at the same time you don't have to be mean to give bad reviews. The writer will not learn anything from a review that simply says a few words.
    But its fair enough if you dislike poetry after all we have plenty of writing forums here.
     
  17. SeaBreeze
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    SeaBreeze Banned

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    May I tentivly ask, why just poetry? Why not all the novels and short stories or essays that people post up? I wanted to post some of my novel up but nobody even blinked at it, well, maybe on or two but they havn't been here in a while. But granted, I havn't done much reviewing of the novels as we seem to be more pushed into reviewing poetry more than anything else.
    And yeah, I am not good at critting peoples work. As I have said a gazzilion times, I prefer to review as a reader. Because, if pieces of work get published, it's not only proffesional reviewers that are going to be reading your work. Everyday people are.

    On the few odd occasions that I have reviewd people's work, I have been guilty of the great work, nice job, blah, blah, blah but also a few times I have said what I thought the poem said to me, eg: "To me this sounds like something classy. It comes to my mind." I also reviewed a poem just recently and said that it wasn't to my taste but the writer was kind enough that he explained what the piece meant and I actually re-read it and found that it was funny and I 'got' what he was trying to say.

    But a small thing thats grating on me is when people remind us "GO REVIEW POEMS" when they are not mods. I'm sorry, but it kind of ****s me sometimes. This is all rambling stuff but the message I'm trying to say is that, don't just focus on the poetry section, focus on all works and try not to critisise those that try even though they are not good at reviewing peoples work. Many of us figure that we will leave it to those that knowe what they are doing, I know I do that.

    ~Dropbear_oz
     
  18. Raven
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    Raven Banned

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    Post it give me a link and I promise I will sit and read it and offer you a review of my thoughts.
     
  19. SeaBreeze
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    SeaBreeze Banned

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    When I get the disc with the right story on it, I will be happy to post it.
     
  20. Raven
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    Raven Banned

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    And don't forget to give me a link DOZ.
     
  21. SeaBreeze
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    SeaBreeze Banned

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    I will try not to forget. If I can actually know how to do that.... But still, my own work is beside the point. How many of us actually review the novels, short stories etc? I know I havn't really, but all this talk has gotten me thinking, if this forum was all about poetry, shouldn't it be re-named Poetry writing. Org or something? My point is, it's not all about poetry.
     
  22. Raven
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    Raven Banned

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    Well said.
     
  23. Torana
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    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

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    Yes that is a good point Domoviye and when I return after tonight I will make a concerted effort to revieve 2 in those areas every day if I can.

    I also encourage people to send pm's to the reviewers to ask for reviews. Also if someone is after a review in story areas please pm me as I rarely go in there due to me writing poetry more. But I will do my paart in those areas more often. Sorry for my lack of activity in there everyone.
     
  24. SeaBreeze
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    SeaBreeze Banned

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    It's not just you Torana, it's everyone. That may come across wrong but It's more or less like, you don't have to take everything on your shoulders, let someone else help to pick up the slack here. I know I can't exactly talk but maybe I should review the novels more often but yeah, don't take it all on yourself!
     
  25. Eoz Eanj
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    Eoz Eanj Contributing Member Contributor

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    For the next three weeks or so I'm only going to do my indepth reviews if specifically asked to, by pm or w/e.

    Simply because these days I have no time, too busy studying for my finals and if I don't pass them it jepordises me graduating highschool,
     

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