"Don't tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass." --Anton Chekhov
I'm here on CYS primarily as a reader and reviewer. I have an interest in seeing good stories posted, and bad ones going away, and the site being a place readers can browse to reliably find quality work. I tend to be fairly busy during the week, but if you want general impressions or advice on a story or writing excerpt, feel free to PM me. (If you're new, just fyi getting advice and feedback is one of the things the Writing Workshop on the forums is for as well.)
Otherwise, past experience has taught me that the reason you're looking at my profile right now might be because I hurt your fragile feefees with critical remarks.
Haha I think Mizal has a gift for driving half-crazy members into full-fledged crazy :) - Will11
You made fun of something I am doing. That's not very nice. I want people to be nice. Please be nice. - some retard
Let me explain my approach to reviewing:
I said it just a moment ago, but I know words are hard, so I'll repeat: I'm here primarily as a reader and a reviewer. If I feel the thing I just read wasted my time, my review will reflect that.
A story, to be a story, needs an engaging plot, relatable characters and conflicts for them to overcome in a believable way. A rudimentary idea of pacing and structure and a creative idea or two thrown in the mix wouldn't hurt either! (Spelling, punctuation, grammar and proof reading are a given. Better to not publish at all if you can't even be bothered with that much.)
It's not any reader's job to pat you on the back for only failing to deliver in X or Y number of ways. When I see a story that's not a story, I rate it a one and move on. There are people happy to offer feedback, and you can write all you want for as long as you need, but once you hit that publish button you're throwing your work out into the wild and you'd better be sure it can stand on its own merits.
(Storygames with more focus on the 'game' part are rarer and have slightly different criteria, but they still need enough decent writing to hold them together, and above all need to be entertaining.)
Now, for all you kids just starting out, the Grammarly Handbook is a great resource, and above all I'd recommend you just read more books. Step away from comforting junk food like Warrior Cats a little while and challenge yourself by branching out to other genres, older books, and books above your age level. Whether you like them or don't like them, see if you can look at the author's choices from a meta level and identify why.
CYS Forum Advice and Etiquette
A modernized guide to the forums. The path to internet popularity and happiness, and a few CYS specific do's and don'ts.
on 3/29/2017 8:11:06 PM
Captcha is awful, yes. It's another of those situations of the 'solution' being as much an annoyance for the legitimate users as the trolls, yeah.
Email confirmation is the main thing I've wanted to see, that and obviously, one account per email. Making a bunch of new accounts then becomes tedious enough to be a deterrent to this kind of thing.
Suggestion for IP bans have been hand waved away by past admins as too easy to get around, but I think that's really overestimating the intelligence of the typical trolls we get. And I mean, there's a reason that and email confirmations are the standard at pretty much every forum out there. Nothing's crazier or more obsessive than a socially broken nerd, but 99% of the time those precautions are enough.
But CYS has been around for ages and so it's not like the site's facing anything it hasn't before, people were panicking just a little too much IMO.
We've got 3J able to do updates now but either one of those things I suspect would need a significant amount of work, and he has a life and a job and has already spent a ridiculous amount of time improving the site on other ways the past months.
Though of course Endmaster has a job and family and his own RL stuff to deal with too and can't be expected to be able to just drop everything and deal with things 24/7 every time this sort of thing happens. It's basically a matter of whether it's more practical to fix things now or later given limited time and manpower.
on 3/29/2017 6:53:01 PM
I missed this one earlier, but LOL, carve it on the tombstone.
A random cooking thread
on 3/29/2017 4:07:33 PM
One time I had no bread so I made savory French toast out of Eggo waffles and no lie it was one of the best fuckin things I ever tasted.
Mizal, Snake Scissorer
on 3/29/2017 12:25:45 PM
Hadn't realized Honor was banned when I posted this. Damn, and I was looking forward to bants about shooting coons on sight.
on 3/29/2017 12:10:40 PM
I guess I missed some things but he was more entertaining than most of the rest of you as of last night.
Mizal, Snake Scissorer
on 3/29/2017 11:34:24 AM
I've shot a lot of raccoons and they're cute so it sucks. :( if you see them in the daytime walking like they're drunk you have to though because it's usually distemper.
Mizal, Snake Scissorer
on 3/29/2017 11:32:28 AM
It's safer to finish them off with the garden hoe but mine is dull and it sucks and so it's not good for much more then pinning them down and going 'now what?' But if I get them directly behind the head I can just reach down with your free hand and sever it with kitchen shears.
Did it out of necessity with the one in the house because it was small and I just had it pinned with a dust pan, but it worked out well enough I've been using them on the adults too.
Of course ideally I'd just shoot them but they're almost always on concrete. I did everything I could trying to get the last one to move off into the grass and then finally resorted to building a wall of cardboard boxes so I could get close enough to reach it with the hoe.
on 3/29/2017 9:52:02 AM
Could we get a couple of examples of this in action? I'm assuming they'd have different scenes throughout the story based on these variables, but I can't really speak to how realistic or natural it would look without more details on how you're integrating it all into the story.
Mizal, Snake Scissorer
on 3/29/2017 7:50:04 AM
After the second one my nerves are shot lol. I heard a dry leaf scraping across the concrete later and my brain interpreted it as a rattle.
Two snakes in one day is just too many. D: I was literally in the act of posting about the first when the dogs started barking at the second.
I'm really glad there isn't a five foot long, female and possibly pregnant diamondback just chilling around the place anymore though.
on 3/29/2017 7:41:18 AM
Based on the content of the PM I have a suspicion it really is the teacher trying to be cute, but the issue is more the dude was monumentally stupid on several levels and now deserves to squirm a little. (I mean all I did was google the username of the person who PMed me. It took five seconds and anyone could do that.)
One of the kids has already been on the forum to make an off-topic shitpost, and since this is now the second wave, not including the republished story from the first, it's exactly all the other stuff going on that makes me want to nip this in the bud before we wind up with more children on a rampage because the site is full of evil jerks who want them to use grammar.
And as just telling them things like 'this is not what the site is for, you should use sneak peek for school projects and this is how, BTW don't republish once an admin removes this or it will be deleted', repeatedly, went nowhere last time despite the teacher obviously reading it, I'm stepping it up a notch because Endmaster is a little busy right now and shouldn't have to waste time policing the storygames page.
Also I honestly do think it's fucked up for a teacher to encourage 10 year olds to deliberately flood the site with shitty stories that don't come within a mile of minimum standards, when five minutes of browsing would have made it clear what you're opening them up to. And that's aside from anything they might come across elsewhere in the archives or on the forums.
I was a sweetheart last time and suggested they all be removed without waiting the two days so the children wouldn't get savaged. But now that I know the adult responsible for them is also on the site and just doesn't give a fuck I'm over that and know exactly where to direct my annoyance.
And basically, there are just too many retards convening on the site right now for it to be amusing this guy is sending in more.
E: As for young kids on the site in general, IDK, I realize if these kids are on the internet at all they've probably seen porn and the like and will be jaded little assholes that give no fucks soon enough regardless, but it still seems irresponsible to knowingly turn them loose here, short of that quarantined school mode idea that's been tossed around. (But, like sneak peek, and dictionaries, they would still have to bother to actually use it...)
ATM though anything they post is going to be rated a 1 and then unpublished after multiple people tell them they suck. I know sometimes stray lambs wander in of their own volition and then nature takes its course, but it seems unusually cruel for them to be deliberately herded into the den of wolves.