What's Wrong With Writerscafe? : Forum : Servers, Mentors, and Genre Ca..


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Servers, Mentors, and Genre Categorizing

11 Years Ago


Let's talk about genres. There are more types of stories than just "story," and there are more types of poetry than just "poem." There's no way everyone can like every type of story or poem. For instance, I like a lot of the slam and lyric poetry on this site but personally can't stand most freeverse. Stream-of-consciousness story writers don't tend to like my character-driven stories. There's even a few screenwriters here.

On this site, there are "popular" genres that only get reviewed. Basically only freeverse poetry gets reviewed because that's most of what's written. Only erotica stories get reviewed here because sex sells and its the only form of writing that lazy users will actually sit through pages and pages to read. The most infrequent form of writing that hardly ever gets reviewed is screenplay and longform story (like 6+ pages stories). However, there are users on this site who want to read those things, but can't find them because all they see on people's profiles when they browse is "story." People should be writing what kind of story or poem their piece is in one of the note spaces below the title box or at the end of the story. This is going to help like-minded writers find each other better and more efficiently. If you're writing a freeverse poem, then you should write "freeverse" in the box below the title.

Here's how I can see this being a very good thing combined with Levels. If you're a Level 4 flash fiction writer who finds the profile of a level 5 flash fiction writer, then you've just found a mentor! The embodiment of what this site stands for is writers helping other writers, this is going to foster a community learning environment.

On Mentors, in my personal experience, there are people on this site whom I look up to and I know lots of other writers look up to them too. My own experience has been fostered by the feedback I've gotten from writers who WERE better than me. For most part though, these writers' designations are unspoken and only known in a few circles. We could very possibly have a Mentors Program where writers can sign up to be "Mentors" and reveiw less experienced writers' writing. Again, the Levels idea would help here as well because it would encourage Level 5's to review Level 1's. Lots of experience reviewing inexperience. Again, the aim of this site. The benefit to the people who sign up as Mentors...lots of return-reviews. Think about it, if you're giving a lot of reviews you're probably receiving reviews in return. We can come up with ways to decide who gets to be a Mentor together and we can also impose stringent reviewing standards on them if we want because they'll be acting as teachers, not as ordinary users.

About Servers, it's a well known fact that WC has gotten HUUUUGE. There's what, like 30,000 people here? There used to be 2,000 when I joined and everyone knew everyone and we had meetups and groupwrites and people actually participated in the groups. Now it's hard to stay connected because there's so much noise. In the online gaming community, they have these things called servers. They cap off a server at like 3,000 people and start a new one. What we could do is something like informal servers based on region the writer actually lives in in the real world. Like West Coast, East Coast, and Midwest servers, might encourage more meetups because people would be closer to each other and there's nothing stopping people from browsing users on other servers. Again, just another way to organize the users on this site in ways they can better find and interact with each other.

Please post your opinions and ideas. Love it? Hate it? Spew it!


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[no subject]

11 Years Ago


Originally posted by Nicole Hellene

Let's talk about genres. There are more types of stories than just "story," and there are more types of poetry than just "poem." There's no way everyone can like every type of story or poem. For instance, I like a lot of the slam and lyric poetry on this site but personally can't stand most freeverse. Stream-of-consciousness story writers don't tend to like my character-driven stories. There's even a few screenwriters here.

On this site, there are "popular" genres that only get reviewed. Basically only freeverse poetry gets reviewed because that's most of what's written. Only erotica stories get reviewed here because sex sells and its the only form of writing that lazy users will actually sit through pages and pages to read. The most infrequent form of writing that hardly ever gets reviewed is screenplay and longform story (like 6+ pages stories). However, there are users on this site who want to read those things, but can't find them because all they see on people's profiles when they browse is "story." People should be writing what kind of story or poem their piece is in one of the note spaces below the title box or at the end of the story. This is going to help like-minded writers find each other better and more efficiently. If you're writing a freeverse poem, then you should write "freeverse" in the box below the title.

Here's how I can see this being a very good thing combined with Levels. If you're a Level 4 flash fiction writer who finds the profile of a level 5 flash fiction writer, then you've just found a mentor! The embodiment of what this site stands for is writers helping other writers, this is going to foster a community learning environment.

On Mentors, in my personal experience, there are people on this site whom I look up to and I know lots of other writers look up to them too. My own experience has been fostered by the feedback I've gotten from writers who WERE better than me. For most part though, these writers' designations are unspoken and only known in a few circles. We could very possibly have a Mentors Program where writers can sign up to be "Mentors" and reveiw less experienced writers' writing. Again, the Levels idea would help here as well because it would encourage Level 5's to review Level 1's. Lots of experience reviewing inexperience. Again, the aim of this site. The benefit to the people who sign up as Mentors...lots of return-reviews. Think about it, if you're giving a lot of reviews you're probably receiving reviews in return. We can come up with ways to decide who gets to be a Mentor together and we can also impose stringent reviewing standards on them if we want because they'll be acting as teachers, not as ordinary users.

About Servers, it's a well known fact that WC has gotten HUUUUGE. There's what, like 30,000 people here? There used to be 2,000 when I joined and everyone knew everyone and we had meetups and groupwrites and people actually participated in the groups. Now it's hard to stay connected because there's so much noise. In the online gaming community, they have these things called servers. They cap off a server at like 3,000 people and start a new one. What we could do is something like informal servers based on region the writer actually lives in in the real world. Like West Coast, East Coast, and Midwest servers, might encourage more meetups because people would be closer to each other and there's nothing stopping people from browsing users on other servers. Again, just another way to organize the users on this site in ways they can better find and interact with each other.

Please post your opinions and ideas. Love it? Hate it? Spew it!



Ok, so I agree with certain parts of this.  I agree that all those teens that write freeverse as just a "blog for emotions" should put it up after the title, I really get anoyed every time I am getting ready to review a poem for flow, structure, and rhyming and I get a blob of emotions that do not flow or rhyme whatsoever.

I dissagree though about levels still.  I would class myself at maybe a "level 3" poet, yet even when I was level one I had a lot of help from a "level five" called Mark, I am very thankful for his suggestions and without them I would not be like this today.  according to you I would have to gradually get up to "level 4" before I could ask him for help.
I like the fact that there is lots of people, you can make your own comunity of friends and there is no reason you need to shut off other writers.  The more people the better, Charlie has said about the same already.

I look up to many people on this site, that does not however mean that I cannot go to their work, read it and point out the problems I see.  This will result either in them thanking me and fixing things they had not seen that other writers passed, or they could explain to me why these things do work so I will be helped in my writing. 

I really don't agree with all of your talk against teens, we are the future and I am sure when you were a teen you got pissed when people just wrote you off.  I am not a freestyle poet and I hate that you always act like all teens are like that. 
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11 Years Ago


YES! That's exactly what I'm getting at, you hit it on the money. Level 5's helping Level 1's. In my original idea, I called it "Community Service" where Level 5's had to review Level 1's occasionally. I'm evolving this idea into a Mentor's program where Level 5's can designate themselves as Mentors and help out the beginning writers.

The higher Level's are a little more informal as far as Mentoring goes, when you have a little bit of a handle on your craft, all you really need to do is watch and learn. So if a Level 4 slam poet finds a Level 5 slam poet, all the Level 4 really needs to do is bookmark them and read their stuff.

Here's an example of how this has helped me. It's a well known fact that the element that EVERY writer struggles with the most is writing actions scenes. Swordfights, car chases, hand-to-hand combat, these are all very technical writing skills that oftentimes don't come naturally to a writer and are hard to do right. Most writers need previous real world experience to write them and not every writer is a black belt in Karate or Sword-fu. I've never even fired a gun and yet one of my stories called for a gun fight....

I found a writer on this site whom I swear writes action scenes better than R. A. Salvatore. He had a military background so knew a lot about firearms. I read his writing and learned how he strung action together using short, quick sentences and letting your figure out the terminology instead of going through paragraphs of terminology and slowing the fight down. I improved in leaps and bounds from reading his work....

And the thing is I found him completely by accident! There's probably a ton of writers like that on here but we can't find them because they're scattered all over the place. That's why we need Genre categorizing and Mentor designators. It can better show us who we can learn from.

As for the more formal Mentor's program, my sister's social networking site (she has a food-related social networking site) has an actual tab for "Mentors" who help less experienced users bake a certain dish that they really know how to make good or critiques recipes that have been posted. It's been working really well over there and I think it can work well on this social networking site too.