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22 March 2008 @ 08:59 am
Backlog  
I'm two weeks behind on reading forkni-l digests.  This is ordinary, and nothing at all compared to how far behind I am on fkfic-l.  The thing is, I've finally learned that I don't need to reply on forkni-l; I can lurk.  (No, really, I can! This isn't fkspoilr days. ~g~)  But on fkfic-l, I feel very responsible to offer some sort of minimum feedback on every piece I read, no matter what, so I put off reading until I know I can make time for feedback as well.  It's a vicious circle, spiraling nastily from an attempt to create a virtuous circle.  Letters-of-comment can be infinitely frustrating to write in ways acceptable to fandom, but they're also the indispensable fuel for the fire of more stories in an out-of-production fandom.  If you don't tell someone you're reading her stories, she may not know anyone is reading her stories, and she may therefore not write any more stories.

And we must have more stories.

 
 
 
abby82: Nick & Natabby82 on March 24th, 2008 02:28 am (UTC)
But on fkfic-l, I feel very responsible to offer some sort of minimum feedback on every piece I read, no matter what, so I put off reading until I know I can make time for feedback as well.

Wow you are certainly far stronger than I am. I don't think I could refrain from reading until I know I can give feedback.

Then again my approach hasn't exactly been the most conducive to feedbacking either. It's sad how little properly worded feedback I've actually sent. I've got several for you in the draft section of my email. Even feedback on ficlets and other shorter stories are difficult to get out in a timely manner.
Amy R.: Castbrightknightie on March 27th, 2008 06:47 am (UTC)
I should admit that feedback discipline is something I developed after I'd been around the lists for a while; it sure wasn't born in me as a newbie! :-) I hope to ensure people at least know their work is read, in part so they will want to continue writing FK, and in part to sustain that component of the community. But it doesn't help when I let things age; I should get caught up, so I can be more useful!

Of course, then I would be very unhappy, if I read it all up and there was no more. :-)

(Much more seriously, I sent a comment to Christy S. almost two years after she posted "Little Altar Boy," the one story she ever wrote. I'm so glad I did catch up then; she died a few months later, and that turned out to be the only off-list conversation we ever had. Now the story sits forever unrecommended in my "Potential Recommendations" file, because I didn't think to ask recommending permission before she died.)

>"It's sad how little properly worded feedback I've actually sent."

Sometimes I simply go with: "Thank you for sharing." It's brief and generic, but it's also sincere and straightforward.

I've noticed that in these LJ-days, letters of comment have really changed; many are one-liners, and some are even a single word! (For example, "Awwwww!" in reply to something sweet.) I won't say I don't relish something longer and more thoughtful, but I think even the single-word comments can encourage people, and people don't expect the kind of analysis they perhaps did a decade ago.

>"got several for you in the draft section of my email."

Oh, thank you! That's very kind of you, and a pleasant thought. If the day comes, you'll know where to find me. ;-)