1. CDRW
    Offline

    CDRW Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Messages:
    1,532
    Likes Received:
    27

    Why aren't experienced members doing reviews?

    Discussion in 'The Art of Critique' started by CDRW, Jul 10, 2008.

    I just made an eye opening tour of the latest posts in the review room. How come none of the experienced members are doing reviews, or for that matter, posting their own work? What happened to the in-depth reviews that I remember from when I joined just a few months ago? I'll admit, I haven't been as good as I should be about doing it, but I at least try and make the effort once in a while, and I would hardly call myself experienced. Come on guys, we need help in there. That's why we post. BTW cudos to Etan Istar. I saw her name appear more often than any of the other older members. All the rest of you, step up. I will to. We need good examples.
     
  2. LibbyAnn
    Offline

    LibbyAnn Contributing Member

    Joined:
    May 24, 2008
    Messages:
    558
    Likes Received:
    6
    I try to review when I have time, but honestly, I get a little put out when people join solely to post their work to the review forum...and it seems like a lot of that has been going on lately. I try to catch when members who have more than 3 posts post their work and review it.

    I'm not going to spend my time reviewing works when people are going to just "post and run"...if that makes any sense at all!
     
  3. Lemex
    Offline

    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2007
    Messages:
    10,507
    Likes Received:
    3,151
    Location:
    Northeast England
    I post somthing whenever I finnish it, and think I have checked it enogh.
    And reivew somthing whenever somthing catches my eye.
     
  4. Banzai
    Offline

    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2007
    Messages:
    12,871
    Likes Received:
    150
    Location:
    Reading, UK
    I need to review more. Simple as. I've been doing a bit off site (in private) lately, but I'm intending to do more as soon as my schedule allows for it.
     
  5. assassins creed
    Offline

    assassins creed Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2008
    Messages:
    140
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    DUBLIN
    I am relatively new here in the forums and I do my best to offer 'sound' advice if possible to people. I also try to check out the other threads in the forum, read them and if I can offer them an opinion there and then I will, otherwise i will give it another read and mull it over to see if there is anything further I could add to the relevant piece of work been discussed..

    Aside from all this I have been writing some threads, sending in some of my own work and seeking other members constructive opinions and critiques which would only enhance my writing, so I can produce better quality writing.
     
  6. Rumpole40k
    Offline

    Rumpole40k Banned

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2008
    Messages:
    7,290
    Likes Received:
    54
    Location:
    Paradise City, Street of the Gods
    Honestly I review those people's work who ask me to. I do this simply because I hate to give quick critiques and this is what works for me.
     
  7. mammamaia
    Offline

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2006
    Messages:
    19,316
    Likes Received:
    1,014
    Location:
    Coquille, Oregon

    'none' isn't true if, as i would think, i'd be considered among the 'experienced' members, since i post there every single day... not in all the sections, but in several where i feel i can be of some help... though i'm a fairly full-time poet and sometime lyricist, i avoid those sections for reasons i'd rather not mention, but i do post in many threads of the short story, non-fiction, script/screenplay, and novel sections...

    i don't usually post my own work, since i don't go to the writing sites i monitor daily to get help, but only to offer it... though i might post a piece now and then, just to get feedback on the content...

    love and hugs, maia
     
  8. CDRW
    Offline

    CDRW Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Messages:
    1,532
    Likes Received:
    27
    Oops sorry mammamaia, I should have mentioned you. :redface: You do wonderful work.
     
  9. Cogito
    Offline

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    35,935
    Likes Received:
    2,043
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    I've been kepy busy chasing down spammers, as well as dealing with those

    "Hi! I'm wonderful! Read this! Buh-bye!"

    members Libby Ann mentioned. I still try to get in some reviews, and answer writing questions, and greet new members who take the time to introduce themselves, but I can't always do everything I'd like to.
     
  10. CDRW
    Offline

    CDRW Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Messages:
    1,532
    Likes Received:
    27
    You know, the reason I got out of reviewing is because I was just tired of reading badly written stuff. Don't get me wrong, there's good stuff in the review room written by both old and new members, but it just seems like those are so few and far between that it's not really fun to read them anymore. I honestly think that if the more experienced members posted more of their own work and did more reviews everybody would begin to find the process more enjoyable, and the quality of the new pieces and reviews would go up. It's a catalyst, where people see what good stuff looks like, so they try and make it so their own work matches the quality. I'm making a goal to review at least one piece per day, hopefully it'll catch on. Those of you who do make the effort, thank you. I'm sorry if I didn't mention your name like I should have.
     
  11. NaCl
    Offline

    NaCl Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2008
    Messages:
    1,855
    Likes Received:
    58
    I am certainly not one of the "experienced members" that you reference, but I am acutely aware of the requirement (and privilege) of reviewing on this site. When I first started visiting here, I made a few reviews and tried to offer as much constructive feedback as possible. I have also posted some of my work in both reviewing rooms and a writing competition.

    I have three criteria for reviewing:

    1) The work must have been spell-checked by the poster. If it is obvious that the writer did not make a basic attempt to put up a self-edited piece, then I will not waste my time either.

    2) If the writing violates many very basic rules - such as, writing a whole story in a single paragraph or producing a piece completely written in lower case - then, I will not invest my time. A certain minimal standard for writing should be required before asking others to give their time.

    3) The story must be a subject I find interesting. It would be a disservice for me to review a vampire story or romance theme because I simply could not choke down such material with a positive attitude. I know my limits! LOL

    I am presently working with the printer for my upcoming book release (self published) and I plan to spend more time on reviews as soon as I free up some time. Again, I am not an "experienced member" but I look forward to doing my part as soon as I can.
     
  12. TWErvin2
    Offline

    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2006
    Messages:
    2,528
    Likes Received:
    561
    Location:
    Ohio, USA
    CDRW,

    I've been around writingforums.org for quite a while and posted quite a few things. I guess some would classify me as an 'experienced writer' since I've had some articles and a few short stories published, and my novels have made it out of the slush piles of major publishers...but none have yet been accepted--and it's still a long shot.

    That being said, I spend most of my time commenting in other areas of the forum than the crit area. You'll see me answering questions, posting advice and links and the like in the general writing questions, publishing, SPAG, and character development.

    On rare occasion I post a crit in the short story or novel forum. I think I did one last week. Maybe a few in April and May.

    Reading and posting thougthful comments, advice and carrying on a discussion focused on writing or publishing (other than in the crits area of the forum which you feel is of vital importance) takes time. And every minute I spend online in forums is one less minute that I am working on my own writing.

    If writers desire to read strong pieces, they can read works that have been published. They don't need a crit forum to do that.

    I don't post my work for crit here because I belong to a crit group, and my crit focus and postings go there. Call me selfish, but that's the way it is. I'm not going to change it. I'll spend my time posting in this forum elsewhere as stated above. If that takes the "fun" out of the process for you, that's the way it goes.

    And yes, I did take offense to the "WTF" directed at me. A word of advice. I don't know what area of publishing (genre etc) you're interested in, but generally ticking off folks for no reason isn't going to win friends and influence people the way you'd like. Once you start working your way up the ladder to the semi-pro and pro-markets, it gets to be a pretty small community.

    With me, something like this on a forum here, will not make one whit of difference.

    But I have seen writers get under the skin of editors, and have their work that was being seriously considered dropped like a bad habit, and told not to bother submitting to them again, ever. Just like if you ever attend a writers conference convetion, being on your best professional behavior is wise. And don't be fooled. Competing magazines and publishing houses...their editors, and agents, and marketers, etc, do see each other on occasion and they do talk.

    Terry
     
  13. tarnished
    Offline

    tarnished Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    Messages:
    616
    Likes Received:
    16
    Location:
    Boston
    In the past week, I have noticed more new members posting their work- which is fine.
    But those members barely meet the requirements, ( 2 reviews to their name), and I get discouraged after seeing that. I am probably not considered an expierenced member- because I'm not. But I do make an effort to review whenever I can, and I just now posted my first piece in a while. This is mainly because of a recent flood of "good job!!" reviews. Sure-its a review-but not helpful.
    I'll try and review more- but I am only involved in poetry- its the only thing I write. I could try to review others but I wouldn't be of much help.
    -Tarnished.
     
  14. Torana
    Offline

    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2007
    Messages:
    9,659
    Likes Received:
    128
    Some of us have things going on in our lives away from the internet which makes it difficult for us to do reviews as we are under a substantial amount of stress. I haven't revieweed in a while because of things going on in my private life, my child being so ill and a few other stressful issues atm. If that is a problem, take it up with the moderator team, the admin and have my reviewing position taken away from me. I couldn't care less.
     
  15. CDRW
    Offline

    CDRW Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Messages:
    1,532
    Likes Received:
    27
    Torana, I wouldn't dream of asking for you to be removed. I hope your kid gets better real soon.
     
    1 person likes this.
  16. zorell
    Offline

    zorell Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    Messages:
    2,376
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    growing on a tree with a buckeye
    I was never really that good at the full out review, I'm more of a commentator. I'll tell you my general opinion, and highlight a couple fo errors, but I can only do that sentnce for sentence-paragraph for paragraph kind of critique when I'm realy compelled to do it. This thread has brought my lacking to my attention, and I apologize. I have a one track mind, and it's headed for RPG's atm, but I read and comment in between posts when I can. Like Tori said, real life can pull you away at times too.
     
  17. tehuti88
    Offline

    tehuti88 Contributing Member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2008
    Messages:
    642
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Michigan
    I'm not one of the "experienced" members, though I think I have a good understanding of grammar and writing and such. I don't review, period, because I haven't the time to educate so many people on the basic use of spelling and grammar and things they should have learned years ago. I belong to a writing site where I used to offer critiques and reviews all the time, but over time I just couldn't enjoy reading anymore because nobody understood the basics. It was frustrating. I would spend so much time wallowing through misplaced periods and misspelled words that I couldn't actually see the story itself. I would spend literally HOURS compiling a list of things, not even related to style or plot or characterization, that needed correcting. And, should I try to point out these errors to the writers, they'd bark at me to ignore those things because they'd "take care of them later" and to focus on the story. Forget that. If the grammar is so bad I can't see the story, then I'm not going to try "focusing" on what should be easy to see in the first place. And I'm hardly going to ignore the basics that every editor first looks for before bothering to accept something to be published. I'm not even looking to get published and I try to get my grammar and such the best that I can!

    I just got so disgusted with this sort of widespread laziness among amateur writers that I gave up. They don't want a line edit, well, they should learn to write their lines. THEN I'll focus on the story. The time I spent correcting things, professionals would get paid good money for that. I just wasted hours of my time on people who don't care about learning how to write. The sad thing is, this was most people on the writing site, not a minority.

    Plus I found that when I reviewed I always hoped to get some readers in return. This is illogical, as I don't feel I should be obligated to read anybody's stuff just because they've read mine (especially when I'd write up several pages of a review on a 40kb story and in return I might get a "Great story, really interesting, maybe correct this one thing here" on something 10kb long of my own), so I decided not to waste my time when I could be writing. Maybe when more people learn to write properly, I'll start reviewing again. Every so often I peek into people's work but am usually disappointed yet again. :(

    Regarding posting my own stuff for review--well, I'm not looking for critique anymore. I'm just looking to entertain people. You don't post your work in writing forums unless you want critique on it, so I don't post mine in forums. *shrug*

    ETA: Yargh. Sorry if this sounds all snotty, I just get so fed up at the lack of basic grammar skills in so much work, and at the way so many people who hope to be published just overlook such things! I know some people really do try, but a lot of them really don't seem to, and it's hard to tell which is which when looking at someone's work. I just haven't time to do all that when I have to work on my own stuff. :(
     
  18. Rebekkamaria
    Offline

    Rebekkamaria Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2008
    Messages:
    158
    Likes Received:
    10
    Location:
    La-la-land
    ^Out of curiosity, why do you spend time on writing forums if you're not looking for critique and don't want to review? This actually interests me. :)


    Edit. To the actual thread I could say that I've seen a lot of quality reviews here made by both new and old members. But well, I haven't been here for a very long time so I don't know how it used to be. :)
     
  19. gigantes
    Offline

    gigantes Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2008
    Messages:
    184
    Likes Received:
    0
    just for the record i haven't posted anything for review yet but i've indeed given 3-4 reviews.

    i do have something i'm working on but i'm not sure if it's worth posting since it might be a little intense for people here, being related to religion and metaphysics.

    i see you've started a lot of threads but i'm not sure which one is the tour de force in question. how about a link?

    that's interesting. would you say it's a combination of the mothering instinct and your native personality in operation?
     
  20. CDRW
    Offline

    CDRW Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Messages:
    1,532
    Likes Received:
    27

    Sorry, I wasn't talking about a thread I started. I went through a lot of threads in most of the sections of the review room. Most of those threads didn't have any reviews by people with over 100 posts. There are, however several very good reviews by newer members, but it needs to be balanced out. This is an example of the kind of thread I am talking about. Here's one. It had a little bit of the problem with not enough reviews, but since a mod knew about it and didn't lock the thread I'm assuming he is legitimate as far as they are concerned. The second page has more in-depth reviews, but notice the lack of older members.
     
  21. gigantes
    Offline

    gigantes Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2008
    Messages:
    184
    Likes Received:
    0
    thanks for clarifying, altho my next question would be- does it really matter if long-time members review someone's work?

    what really matters is to get quality reviews even if they come from people new to this paricular forum, correct?
     
  22. Gladiatus
    Offline

    Gladiatus Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
    Messages:
    497
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Brighton, UK
    That is my work in that thread and in response to the question, I really dont care who reviews it, the guy who did the longest on there had only 100 posts but that didnt matter to me, i was gratefull for his in depth review.

    Of course I would like it if senior members reviewed it but hey, it doesnt keep me awake at night!!
    It IS the quality that counts.


    P.S. I hold my hands up to the lack of posts at the start, a friend told me how good this place was so i wanted to jump right in, understandably so! :(
     
  23. CDRW
    Offline

    CDRW Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Messages:
    1,532
    Likes Received:
    27
    You're exactly right. What matters is quality reviews. It doesn't matter where they come from if they're good. The problem is that most new members don't do high quality reviews. Sometimes it is because they just want to be able to post their own stuff so they do the bare minimum. We can't do much about them. Then there's the people who don't know how to review, and the people who are scared to do reviews because they think they don't have anything of value to add. If the people who know how to do it did more quality reviews it would give those who don't many more good examples of how to do it, and what to look for in other peoples work. Everybody's review quality would go up because the new people have examples, and not just advice. The same goes for posting items to be reviewed.

    Edit: I hope nobody thinks I'm saying new members are incapable of doing good reviews. There are some excellent ones done by new members. What I am saying is that new members have a smaller concentration of people who can do an in-depth review, and that everybody would benefit from the input of the ones who have been here longer.
     
  24. Samswriting
    Offline

    Samswriting Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2008
    Messages:
    138
    Likes Received:
    4
    Related to this post. I would caution against "WTF" in a title, that raises hackles and gets people defensive, its not good for moral or getting good solid feedback.

    I would say everyone here has a life outside of here. Give em a break. I have posted one work (love for everyone to look it up and enjoy a chuckle).. I have posted mostly reviews. But I find that initial dive into reviews has dwindled to a more comfortable level.

    Like everyone there are things I enjoy reviewing things I don't. I rarely spend time reviewing anyone's work who has less than 10 or 20 posts... too many in the spare month I've been here have stayed past 10 or 20 posts.

    Your time writing is valuable, our time reviewing is valuable. Life outside takes precedents, I hope it does for all. Reviews will come from those who have the time and inclination. The long standing members have the same freedom we do, to be here or not, review or not. I don't think inflammatory posting is going to encourage anyone to review, it certainly doesn't make me want to go make a barrage of reviews.
     
  25. gigantes
    Offline

    gigantes Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2008
    Messages:
    184
    Likes Received:
    0
    perhaps, perhaps...

    re: this place, so far it seems to be a place where more-experienced amateurs review less-experienced amateurs. not that there's anything wrong with that nor is it uncommon among writing forums IME. after all, perhaps this is the limit of what's possible based on the webforum format.

    there are certainly more professional, critical avenues for review on the net (ie various free university programs) but they seem to lack the casual forum chat experience which i find so rewarding. still, they're probably worth keeping in mind if you're serious about improving. but places like this do seem useful for helping to improve your work from outright bad to at least painless for the reader, if not sparkling with potential.
     

Share This Page