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I think I need to rant

Please, do feel free to ignore if you want to. I wish lj had a way to see how many people actually read your posts. That would make my life so much easier.




Okay, so, I try my best to be a good person, yes? I'm helpful, I'm kind, I don't kick people when they're down (unless it's Ro, and believe me, she has it coming, not that we're talking to each other. If her nose was any higher in the air when I'm around, she'd walk into walls) I love small furry animals. I like to surprise my friends with small presents, and I love to write. That's my main escape in life, is to write. I try to write stories that I would enjoy reading had I not written them. Many times, I do go back and read my old work and find that I do enjoy it, even having written it, because my memory is bad and I don't always recall what I write, so it comes as a pleasant surprise to me. I also find that I've held to the standard I set myself because I do enjoy reading it. That holds for my original pieces as well, I try to write fun and engaging stories that will hold peoples' attention and make them want to reread because they enjoyed it so much. Unfortunately, no publisher will touch me so I'm self-publishing and I don't think I've got an audience out there. That's just me, maybe I do. Maybe I'm just being stupid. This rant is not about how well my books are selling, or if they're not selling. It's about words and fan fiction.

I am this close. THIS CLOSE to throwing in the towel and saying to hell with it all. With my dragon chronicles, I've spent almost seven years working on a large story arc that spans fandoms, and, for a while there, I had a bunch of people following along. Reading. Commenting. Enjoying. No matter what happened or what I did, it seemed like they were there. Then I introduced Mandy, an OC, and I started getting accused of putting in a MarySue character. Come on, like I said to them back then, go read the Outside Influences stories if you want to see how characters based on me look. Tiff and Lex are two halves of me, and there are stories behind them that I am not going into online no matter how much anyone asks. So just don't even. Mandy was created to show a strong female character who could teach. People didn't like her, so I killed her off. Then I lost readers. I went back to the drawing board, tried to pick up the story again, but then I stopped watching CSI: NY and didn't have my character voices there the way I wanted them to be. I made the highly painful decision to kill off the NY half of the community. I lost a TON of readers. So I caved to pressure and brought back Mac and Danny. Didn't seem to make any difference. Too little, too late I suppose. Then I stopped watching CSI the original and decided to add some excitement and suspense to the story, so I had a bomb blow up in Miami. During that time, I added in some new fandoms that I was enjoying and thought would enrich the story. People had been asking for dragons from other countries. I guess I never realized they only meant Europe because almost no one liked the Japan dragons. Even with the new lore that was brought into the story. By this point in time, my read count had dropped and reviews were almost nil for the story. I took it over to AO3 and people started reading it. They enjoyed it. This gave me hope, but the one thing everyone keeps asking for is not to kill off Gil and Nicky. I'll put it here. My intent all along was to kill them off. I had plans for the story that involved that. But what the hell, I caved to reader pressure - the few loyal readers left by this point because I don't want to lose them too - and am trying to work Gil and Nick back into the story. To do that, I had to break off and bring in some help from another country. England. Richard Jury, his human, and some of the gang from Torchwood. Now I think I've lost every single reader I had. I'm getting comments on the last chapter of "War" that, if read right, have sarcasm in them. People, sarcasm is not the way to get a writer to finish a story. THAT IS HOW YOU KILL ANY DESIRE FOR A PERSON TO WRITE.

I posted a couple of days ago asking how many people are interested in my TDC original novel. You know how many people replied back to me on that? One. One bloody person (no offense meant here, perky, I'm making a point. I know you're always behind me). To me that says that this novel that I've worked on for nearly six years has no interest in it what-so-ever. Does anyone even care? What would happen if I just quit posting. Put up a note that said I'm sick and tired of how every bloody fandom is treating me, and believe me, I've had some rough treatment over the 11 years I've been writing fan fiction, and I'm just going to write for myself and original pieces. Then I can upload them to amazon and watch the numbers stay the same. I've run prices. Ebooks are the best way to get my things out there. The only way I could make anything on my books if I put them into book form would be to charge over $10. With Ebooks, I can keep the price down. Not that it matters, but that's as may be.

I suppose I just have a simple question to ask the few people who have actually read this. WHAT THE HELL DO YOU WANT??? I'm looking at stories I have to edit, WIPs that need updates, a novel that's ready to go save for the final edit and I don't want to do anything with any of it. I can't even work on a contest entry that needs to be done because I have no interest in writing at all. People, mind your words when you are talking online. Remember there is no tonal cues with the written word. Reviews can hurt the writer more than anything else if you phrase things wrong, or even write them in frustration or anger. Three days, I've had three reviews that cut deep. Did they mean them to? Who knows. But they did. At this point, who knows when I'll be back.

Comments

( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
feihu
Feb. 22nd, 2013 09:55 am (UTC)
I will be the first person in the world to confess to being a terrible commenter, both here and on fics. I owe your Dragon Chronicles another read through because I confess I started getting lost when there were characters from fandoms I didn't know. I need to read some of your Torchwood ones too, but I fear spoilers. (Not even done with the second episode of series one yet orz.) *hugs* You are an amazing writer, but I understand how easy it is to get discouraged. Hell, I don't know if anyone will even be interested in what I'm working on at the moment because it's not really a popular theme. But if there is anything at all that I can do to help you, let me know.
perkyandproud
Feb. 22nd, 2013 11:21 am (UTC)
Don't worry, I don't take offense. *hugs you*

Speaking as a reader and a fellow writer...write what you want to write. If you feel the story says, "Kill off these characters," then so be it. I will, however, whine and complain...why? Because you wrote them so compellingly that I cared about them and I want them to win, to live, to survive into a happily ever after. ...but sometimes, characters have to die. It's a sad truth. I will get sniffly, I may even cry...I will definitely ask WHY?? But that's what we do when our friends and loved ones die. I would like their deaths to have some meaning, mind you...because I am a plot fan and meaningless deaths leave an unsatisfied feeling in my mind. But even then, I might just be missing it.

...I had a point there, and now it's gone... Uhm, yes. Readers whine because they love the characters and care about them. That's a good thing. Don't cave or compromise just because we whine though!

If you write to make your readers happy...you won't. Readers are fickle and cruel and they don't comment most of the time. Or even click "Kudos." So cruel.

Write what makes you happy. Write the story you want to tell. If you are looking for advice (red or green here?) I'm there for you. If you need input (does this sound like his voice, I've been listening to an English accent for three weeks and can't tell now), I'm there for you. If you want to know who should live or die...ask the characters.

That's my advice.

Please don't stop writing though. You do it really well. You are just having a low confidence moment. Power through it and remember that you ARE good at this! And hopefully you will soon enjoy it again.

*hugs you a lot*
Marsha Alley-Fausnaugh
Feb. 22nd, 2013 11:49 am (UTC)
I love TDC. Its my favorite story. And I hope that you keep writing it. Even if I dont know the fandom I still read it and enjoy it. I just check out the fandom as I read. As to the ones who complain, ignore them. People complain about anything.I like your story because I'm always being surprised. And I love that. So write the way that makes you happy. That makes me happy. lol. Hope you finish it. And I would love to read your dragon ebook. Thank you for your great story.
a_phoenixdragon
Feb. 22nd, 2013 02:29 pm (UTC)
Oh, honey...sounds like you needed to get that off of your chest!!

I agree 100% with perky - she says it all, really: Write for you. Seems every time you hcnaged your tale to appease the audience, it went from bad to worse. Write for you. Write what makes you happy - so you can look back and go 'I was proud to write that. I was happy to spend time on it.' Stick to your guns, bb - and keep bringing the goods. You have a helluva a lot more readers than you'd ever know, I'm sure!

*HUGS*
kilthunter
Feb. 22nd, 2013 06:13 pm (UTC)
Still on vacation, but had to reply to this.

I've been reading these stories since the beginning and have loved them. I'm just not a big fan of Prince of Tennis (don't hate me!!!) anime/manga/etc so I haven't been reading much of the Chronicles lately.

There have been a couple of rotten days that have prevented me from doing vacationey things, but there's a coffee maker and a comfy chair in the room so I've been sitting, looking at the sea, and re-reading this series from the beginning.

You have to do what your Muse tells you.
ktrisha
Feb. 23rd, 2013 12:06 am (UTC)
I have only one suggestion. Write what you like to write. If writing is your passion you must stay with it regardless what people are saying.

I can say when I write reviews of stories even if I do not like them I try to be positive but try to be encouraging of their plot choices.

I love your Dragon Series and evn though I did not like the bombing that "killed Nick and Gil" I understood the plot choices and how it impacted the story.

Please continue writing.
aetas_lupus
Feb. 23rd, 2013 12:56 am (UTC)
I love TDC and if you want to make it an original piece, feel free! (I missed the original post)
dshoover
Feb. 23rd, 2013 02:30 am (UTC)
I like your stories. I am waiting for you to finish the current chapter of Dragon Chronicles before I read it. So I am somewhat behind on the story line. Really any one who writes is usually writing for themselves. I know it is hard but do it your way
silver4fire
Feb. 23rd, 2013 10:47 pm (UTC)
I'm not much of a commenter, i tend to go blank when i try to comment on the story. I do love TDC series, it is one of a few that i reread.
nemesisz
Feb. 24th, 2013 06:51 pm (UTC)
*hugs*

I can only say one lousy quote to this:
Do what you want.
And I mean what YOU want!
Before you want to satisfy others, first satisfy yourself - may sound egoistical, may that be not in your nature, but it sure feels good and everyone needs it from time to time.
koertell
Feb. 25th, 2013 11:56 pm (UTC)
I fully admit to being one of those that just reads but rarely comments on your stories. This poor behavior, however, is not for lack of respect and love of what you do.

I walked away from reading fanfic many years ago (I think just after you started TDC) due mostly to lack of time for reading. I was cleaning out my bookmarks a few weeks ago, however, and re-stumbled across your work on csi-forensics. I immediately remembered your stories from the I swear universe (oh how I love that series!), and was thrilled to find so much new in your dragon universe and devoured it as quickly as possible. I was saddened by the death of the NY community, particularly Mac and Danny, but I trust you to do what's right for YOUR story. I am simply along for the ride. I admit to losing bits of the story because I am not familiar with any of the characters from Japan, and there were so many to keep track of, but I pushed through knowing that your excellent writing would make everything alright in the end.

Reading that you were planning to also kill Gil and Nicky stopped my heart, but again, I have to trust you and your vision for the universe you have created. I have neither the ability, nor the desire honestly, to write like you do, so I am simply grateful that people like you exist and share your gift with the rest of us. It saddens me that people can be cruel and/or thoughtless to someone who is sharing a part of themselves like you do. Even more, I am ashamed that I have never taken the time to personally tell you the respect I have for you and your work. I hope that whatever you choose to do from here that you are true to yourself and what is best for you. Know that whatever part of your writing you choose to share, I will be reading/buying (I purchased both of your available books from Amazon, but have yet to read them).

Keri
syamak_min
Feb. 27th, 2013 07:48 am (UTC)
I do enjoy your stories but I am really bad at commenting and I am sorry that this has not conveyed how much I enjoy them. I would enjoy reading an original dragon novel. And I am surprised that people didn’t like Mandy because I liked her quite a bit and was sad when she died but I understand that to advance the story some things need to happen.
mulder42
Mar. 3rd, 2013 04:00 am (UTC)
I don't have a lot of time for reading fanfics anymore either, but I still do like to visit TDC from time to time. I will admit it's a bit slow for me when its fandoms I'm not familiar with (the Japan dragons), and I'm afraid I haven't read as much as some of the previous posters, so I wasn't aware of some of the happenings with familiar characters. I am still willing to continue the tale, only because reading them gives me lots of enjoyable personal time. BTW, I'm reading "War" right now, since its been recently completed. :)

I'd say try not to get discouraged. It is nice to get feedback and/or suggestions, but sometimes, you can't let us pull you under if its something we want, but you might not neccesarily like.
call_me_loca
Sep. 6th, 2013 12:36 am (UTC)
Day late and a dollar short, but I just rediscovered TDC after many years and was thrilled to see you continued it. I may not comment/review every chapter, it's a bad habit of mine, especially on older stories (bad experience from an attention seeking ijit) but I try and let the author know once I finish the story.

For me, the purpose of reading is to take me to another place, often unexplored and unpredictable. Certain fanfic writers tend to write whatever gives them the most reviews, even if it doesn't quite mesh with their original intentions and I quickly lose interest.

That being said, TDC opened up a lot of new fandoms for me. When I first read it, I had no clue about Supernatural or any of the anime. I took the time to find out more about the characters and felt they really fit into your world. I'm still not a fan of those fandoms but I did enjoy how you used them in this universe.

As for killing off characters? Sometimes it is necessary. When someone picks up a book by a famous author, they have no control on what they find inside. I feel the same should be true for ALL writers whether it is fanfic or original works.

TL;DR in summary I love most of what you write and have recommended a lot of my friends to check it out. Write what comes from you and the others can just get over it.
lexxiescott
Sep. 7th, 2013 09:55 pm (UTC)
I'm glad you found your way back to it. The piece ended up happy and I'm quite pleased with how it did turn out. The frustration, however, did get to me at times. :)
m_elle_22
Aug. 18th, 2015 12:54 am (UTC)
Hi. You don't know me, I don't know you. I have only just discovered you on AO3 and am reading a few wips. I just discovered the Dragon Chronicles and haven't started reading yet. I actually came to your Live Journal because a fic gave a link to a pic that prompted the story. The pic wont display but I wanted to look around while I was here. Clicked on FAN FICTION, read this and here I am.

I'm sorry you feel that your readers have dropped off and that you have changed your story outlines to try and regain them with no affect. I, for one, can only say I blow hot and cold on WIPs. Sometimes I am soooo eager to read a new update, other times I just need to wait awhile to have a few chapters to read. Sometimes I am just taking a break from the fandom. I hope one or all of these reasons are why people stepped away, because they are all temporary.

I have NO idea how a writer can stay inspired and be committed to a story for 11 years. I don't think I have any relationships that have lasted that long. I admire that a lot. In fact in another fandom, QAF USA I have followed one writer for over 10 years on her story. I've stepped away for a year at a time, sometimes, just because every update more than a month apart tends to make me reread a lot of the story to get back into it, and frankly sometimes I just don't wanna.

LOL. All I can say is thank you for sharing your stories. And, in my honest opinion, the only person you can please is yourself, so stay true to your vision and bend NOTHING for a fickle audience who may or may not stick it out. That way, at the very least, you have a story you can look back on with fondness and pride.

I'm still delving into the fics I just found so I'm sure you'll hear from me again in some way. :)
( 16 comments — Leave a comment )

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