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Oct 2

Getting tired of Wattpad

Posted on Friday, October 2, 2015 in Writing

I’m getting a little tired of Wattpad not working properly. When I started out using it a year or more ago, with my first account, I felt that even though I mainly posted Swedish stories and also a collection of extremely short fics (which really isn’t my thing, normally), I did get a few hits now and then. Sure, I also use Wattpad to find and read the occasional high quality book. And I did have a tiny little bit of interaction with the other users.

Then when I started writing another type of story and wanted somewhere to post it, I got a new account and so far it hasn’t worked at all. The few people I know, who have expressed an interest in reading my stories know me and can easily visit my personal home page to read them. Which makes me wonder what the point is. Maybe Wattpad has changed or – contrary to my expectations – people might actually dislike my new stories, and to some extent they like my old stories. In any case, I don’t really feel that Wattpad is working out for me anymore.

If I want my closest friends and family to read my stories I don’t need Wattpad for that. They can read them any way they like (on my homepage, in an email etc).

Sep 24

A few thoughts about slash

Posted on Thursday, September 24, 2015 in Writing

Maybe this is something very common among slash writers, but I usually feel that there are people I don’t want to read my stories, at all. It may be old-fashioned, immature or even unnecessary or it could be completely understandable – I don’t know that many slash writers personally.

Anyway, here goes:

I don’t want guys to read my stories. There. I’ve said it. A few actually have, and I haven’t had any negative reaction so far, but also not a very positive one. Tactful is probably the word. They were curious, they were allowed to read a story. They probably didn’t like it, but knew they’d asked for it and were polite. Fair enough. It just doesn’t encourage me to show them any more stories.

One guy I know would probably like to read everything I’ve written eventually. He’s nice. I like him. He is a graduate of gender studies. That probably means he has an interest beyond that of most ‘ordinary’ straight guys. I still don’t want him to read them all, because you know, that would show him a pattern. Me writing slash stories more than 50 % of the time. It would feel a bit embarrassing. But as Janet Evanovich says about writing sex stories and letting someone know you read them: “Yes, it is embarrassing, get over it.”

In fact, I try not to tell any guys I write slash stories, because you know – they usually wouldn’t be interested. I had a gay friend who was slightly interested – he was mainly interested in his own business – not mine – but slash stories were at least mildly interesting to him, even written by a straight female. I suspect most gay guys wouldn’t be, because we write slash ‘by women for women’ and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. With a close friend who’s gay, I’d like to expect an understanding. “Sure, it’s cool that you write those stories, for other women. Great idea, but it’s not for me.” You know, that sort of thing. More than that, just wouldn’t be fair to expect.

This one may be so natural that everyone agrees with it: I don’t want my mom to read any of my more ‘adult’ stories. Not that she’s the least bit curious. If I’ve written a ‘serious’ story (that is, not adult) I will have to ask her nicely if she wants to read it, and then she usually does. That is, if she’s not afraid it might be too upsetting, which of course is possible, even with a ‘non-adult’ story.

This reminds me of someone I got to know online, in fan fiction/slash circles. She worked as a web designer, that is made web pages for clients. That meant some clients wanted to see her own personal page (this was a long time ago). Also, her husband was very proud of her and told everyone he knew about his clever wife and her wonderful web pages and entusiastically handed out her URL to all his friends, without having read the stories on the page himself… So I told her we have another ‘big’ home page (the vegan one, but back then there was also a lot about many other things, that were totally unrelated). She thought that was a good idea, so maybe she made another web page, one that she could show to anyone, without being embarrassed. Not that anyone ever asks to see my homepages these days.

Of course, deep down, I’m not ashamed or really embarrassed. I don’t see anything wrong with writing (good) stories about slash and/or straight sex. It’s just like everything else – if you’re interested in it and you do it reasonably well, why not? (Because you know, writing anything really badly, would be embarrassing in itself). But superficially, it does tend to get embarrassing when you run into people who don’t understand at all.

If you write slash stories and/or ‘het adult’ stories, how do you feel about this? Would you show your stories to anyone who’s interested? Or do you have a preference?

Jan 3

Let Your Readers Think For Themselves

Posted on Saturday, January 3, 2015 in Writing links

Read more here.

Dec 6

Making Promises to Your Readers

Posted on Saturday, December 6, 2014 in Writing links

Read more here.

Dec 4

Readers’ love letters to libraries

Posted on Thursday, December 4, 2014 in Links

Readers' love letters to libraries

Libraries won’t be going out of fashion any day soon, if readers’ love for them is anything to go by.

Read more here.

Mar 6

5 Reading Rules for Book Lovers of All Ages from Book Riot’s Rebecca Schinsky – Reading Rainbow

Posted on Thursday, March 6, 2014 in Literature

Read more here.

Jan 30

Writing for the minority

Posted on Friday, January 30, 2009 in Writing

Over the years, I’ve had literally thousands of readers, but of those, practically no one leaves a comment. Out of those few, some have given me very positive feedback. The question is, why don’t more people comment? Lately, I’ve come to the conclusion that most people don’t like my writing. Another reason might be that they feel that the stories I write are too long. Some might like my stories, but are too lazy or not care enough to comment. But even if those are contributing factors, the fact remains, my writing doesn’t appeal to that many people.

It’s discouraging, because I don’t just write this way because I can’t do any better, though maybe that’s part of the truth, I have to face that possiblity, but I actually like these stories. It’s the sort of thing I Iike to read. I’d read more of similar writing if it was available – and in some cases it is. The books I buy are often unknown to the general public, though I like relatively ‘mainstream’ genres and subgenres – mysteries, thrillers, fantasy, historic novels.

There isn’t much I can do about the popularity of my stories. I know one thing though: I’ll keep writing what I like to read. If no one else likes it, fine. I can live with that. After all, I’ve never expected more. Hoped, but never expected.

Dec 25

The beta reader who disappeared

Posted on Tuesday, December 25, 2007 in Writing

Once upon a time, not so very long ago, Tonica actually had a beta reader. It was just one, but it does mean a lot to have at least one other person who reads your stories. Best of all is if this person (ok, let’s be honest here, this girl) knows the fandom the story is set in. If it’s an original story, your beta reader can point out spelling and grammar mistakes. Hopefully.

My beta reader (I won’t name her) simply got tired of it. Got tired of my stories, of me, I don’t know, I guess it was something. It feels really sad not to have any audience at all anymore. Sure one or two visitors still drop in now and again, but almost all of those (the few who do come) stay for a few seconds.

Apparently, I’ve failed to reach the audience. Or my writing has deteriorated. Or the readers have tired of what I’m writing. I really don’t know what the problem is. It almost feels unreal to remember that my homepage – Agri Sublunares – former The Sublunar Fields – former Tonica’s World – once used to bring in hundreds of visitors every week.

My fics are mentioned on some of the great fandom sites. Yes, without me first getting in touch to ask them for a link exchange. Of course I linked to them right away, if I wasn’t already doing that, which I mostly did. Two people have used my fics in their theses.

And now no one wants to look at my stories. It feels a little sad, but I guess that’s how it goes. I was going to make a video podcast (a little movie) and put on the site. If it isn’t too late already. Besides, I was going to make this movie with my beta reader and (what do you call them again, oh, right, I remember now) a friend. Right, never mind.

This post might just as well have been called The readers who disappeared, but that’s enough misery for today. Writing still happens to be my very favorite thing to do in the whole world, closely followed by reading, even if it might sound a little insular to be sitting around, reading my own stories.


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