Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Suggestions?

Hi all, it's your moderator, Lee.

Needless to say, I'm really thrilled with how popular this stories blog has become and how many people are contributing right now.  In the past, it was always like pulling teeth to get contributions, but now it seems like everyone wishes to contribute.

Since things are so busy here, I was wondering if anyone has any suggestions for things we can do to improve on this stories blog?  Is there anything we can do to make it more accessible in any way (no pun intended)? 

16 comments:

  1. I think adding some universal tags/labels to the stories. Perhaps "in progress story", "complete story", and "incomplete story". I added the 'incomplete' note to my Lucky 13 tags because I didn't think it was fair for someone to read it, get invested in it and then find out that it isn't finished. (One day I would like to finish it - and then I'll change it to "completed story")

    Another suggestion is to assign every author a month or two where they back-date all their posts. For instance I could only post in June 2010. All my story updates would be back-dated within that month. Since you can back-date time as well I could have all 18 updates take place on one day, or spread them out as I chose.

    You could also build a key so we could then search by author.
    Eleanore - June 2010
    Jane - July 2010
    Aloha - August 2010
    etc.

    I'd also suggest keeping these author months prior to 2010 so they don't get intermingled with the "update posts".

    Anyway, that's my 2 cents. :)

    I'm just happy for this blog and all the great material it produces.

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    1. Thanks for the suggestions. I think they're all great ideas, but I'm not entirely sure if they can be implemented.

      The incomplete tag is a good idea, although truthfully, practically all the stories are incomplete! And I worry that I would be the one stuck with fixing the tags when the stories got completed.

      I would really like there to be a way to search by author. One thing that might work is to label the first post of each story with, for example, Author-Eleanor. Then make sure there's a link at the bottom of that post to get to the rest of the story. It doesn't make sense to put the author label on every single post because it could end up just being a mishmosh of random stories mixed together. This way if you click on an author's name, it will get you to the first chapter of each of their stories.

      What do you think?

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    2. Maybe then a special tag just for COMPLETE STORY. It could just get added to the first post, much like the Author tag (great idea for handling that).

      I still think assigning months would be a good idea, especially for new posters. Many stories have been posted directly into the update stream lately and it makes it messy.

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    3. We could do the complete story tag.

      Maybe today I will go through and delete all the update posts that don't have any comments attached to them. They're just taking up space. Is there a reason I shouldn't do this?

      Maybe you're right that I should make people postdate their initial story. I don't even have to assign a whole month... I can just assign a week or even a day (unless the story has > 48 parts).

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  2. What about a monthly moderator update?

    Hopefully not too much hard work for you, but maybe just on the first of each month you could post a monthly summary so everyone can see at a glance how all the stories have progressed in the prior month, so that way, i could wait until 1 Sept, and then spend the month reading back on what i'd missed without hanging out too much for what was coming...

    As a reader, I do agree with Eleanore about the incomplete thing, as one of the reasons I haven't visited much recently is because I wanted to let some of the stories build up as the suspense was driving me crazy and I got so disappointed each time I came that the stories I was following hadn't progressed.

    On the other hand, as a writer, I had a huge mental block and lots going on in my life and I left my own story hanging out there for way too long! That said, I probably wouldn't have had the guts to continue on with it at all but for the wonderful and encouraging comments I received so I do think that authors really need and appreciate that encouragement.

    If there are lots of new authors (as there appears to be), would it perhaps be feasible for all new posts to be approved by you, with the rider that say you won't post parts 1-4 until you received parts 5-8? Then, as you steadily release parts 1-4, say, 1 per week, then the writer is already working on parts 9-12 so you've got content for a minimum of 8 weeks from each author, and a short term writing block on their part shouldn't' interrupt the flow of the story because you've got enough parts saved up?

    That's probably making way too much work for you! I am absolutely completely happy with how things run as they are!

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    1. I do wish people would spread their posts out more, but I hesitate to take things into my own hands. One thing I like about this system is that I don't have to do much on a continuous basis. I used to dread having to post everyone's stories.

      I think the monthly moderator summary is a great idea though. I could post at the beginning of each month with a summary of what has been posted that month.

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    2. Completely understand! I would never have the time or organisational skills to manage such a complex effort! You do a great job - and thank you for providing this forum for us to express ourselves!

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  3. I still don't understand the back dating thing and it makes me feel like an idiot.

    I'm sorry if I'm doing it wrong, but I just post a story in one post and put it in the stream like normal.

    Don't know how to do it any other way!

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    Replies
    1. You're doing it right, Ruth. The back dating only applies to multi-part stories. Yours are all single posts.

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    2. Oh good! Thank you for reassuring me :)

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  4. I like what you did with the Author tab and I like the idea of the Complete label and the monthly summary, but in principle I think it's great that all the authors are self-sufficient and responsible for their own posts. Thanks for doing such an outstanding job as moderator! I'm very happy with the way things are.

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  5. I love the new author tags. Great job!
    I think that, and the monthly updates will help a ton!

    Thank you so much for moderating and hosting this blog.

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  6. I don't know if this exists already since I haven't been reading fiction on here long, but I think it'd be awesome if there were tags for disabilities featured in the stories, kind of like on the review blog. So if you're a blind dev, you could easily find those stories, for example.

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  7. Thanks for all the help with the format of the story blog and for your excellent moderation.

    Thanks, also, to all our great contributors and to the super feedback comments from all!!!

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  8. I'm a new writer and I want to post a new story I have written that might be too long to post all in one go (it's just about finished) - it would only be two or three parts, but I'm a little nervous about how to do it - I'm hopeless with technology!!! I'm sorry, I don't understand the comment about "I do wish people would spread out their posts more"... I'm always hungry for a new update and the sooner the better for me!!!

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    1. If it's a one-shot deal, I can post the story for you. Just email it to me.

      There are a few reasons why posts should be spread out. First, because if someone posts all at once then nothing for months, people may lose interest in the story.

      Also, I would prefer not to have too many posts at once because say I posted your story, then immediately after, three other people posted updates... your story might not end up getting seen or read.

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