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Working with Message Boards


I want to say a huge thank you to Firle for allowing me to try this and for being supportive of my efforts.

Many of the published writers mention writing groups and clubs as one of their main sources of support during their first and subsequent novels. This is great for them but I live in the country so I don't have that. The message board, as Firle has it set up, does give me a similar experience, though.

Once permission was given I did a few things to help those who would be reading my attempt at writing a novel.

1. Since I couldn't "read the story sections" to the message board group I installed a browser extension called "]Grammarly so that the worst of my writing and punctuation mistakes could be fixed prior to my postings.

2. I worked at getting a real outline established for my story to help keep me on track. This is not to say I had chapter titles but rather that I had established several overarching and connecting "scenes or events" to guide me and allowed me to set goals towards writing to start, edit, or finish those scenes and events. This also allows members of the message board to refer to those scenes or events when commenting without my being confused by the comment (hopefully).

3. I made a decision to create new posts to isolate different parts of the story based on events. This allows me to edit sections of the story more easily.

4. I created a "thread list" so new, or regular readers have an easier time following the story being written.

5. I do not depend on the message board for the preservation of the story. I also have the story. I do have the latest version posted but I also copy that version into my word processor (my choice is ]LibreOffice).

Last edited by Pastor Rick, 12/5/2016, 12:39 pm


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Joxcenia Profile
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Re: Working with Message Boards


quote:

Many of the published writers mention writing groups and clubs as one of their main sources of support during their first and subsequent novels. This is great for them but I live in the country so I don't have that.


I have that same problem. I've been trying to find an online group/club where I 'fit.'

I have a list of all that I've come across in a couple of threads, if you want to check out those communities for yourself. I just joined Wattpad, and I'm also a member of Holly Lisle's forum, and Zoe.

[sign in to see URL]
[sign in to see URL]
[sign in to see URL]

What I like about Zoe, is everyone has their own private 'office' where we have control over what discussions and files are within our office. The offices can be private or open. So, if private, you can set it up so that members only get in if you invite them. Or, if open, your office gets added to a directory where others can see it and send you a request to join. If you join, let me know. I'll add you to my private offices.

Here are the threads I mentioned:

List Of Writer Workshops:

[sign in to see URL]
[sign in to see URL]

List of Writer Forums / Communities:

[sign in to see URL]
[sign in to see URL]

The Trigger Street Community was shut down, IIRC. I was a member of it too.







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Oh. I haven't been to Zoe in ages, and they've changed their website. I'll have to login and see what changes they've made to the community.







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I have the same problem, Pastor Rick, complicated by the fact that I don't drive. emoticon I haven't found anyplace that fits me as well as here.

What do you think of Wattpad Joxcenia? I was thinking of joining it but got scared of the big crowd.

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quote:

tryingtowrite wrote:

I have the same problem, Pastor Rick, complicated by the fact that I don't drive. emoticon I haven't found anyplace that fits me as well as here.


Wow! I don't drive either. Well. I'm venturing into driving in my small county. Only driven four times as of this post. Still makes me very nervous.

quote:

What do you think of Wattpad Joxcenia? I was thinking of joining it but got scared of the big crowd.


I haven't had many reads on my works yet. I found this to learn my way around Wattpad:

[sign in to see URL]

Apparently a really good 'book' cover will bring in a lot of readers. And they recommended a site, and I'm in the process of checking it out.

[sign in to see URL]


Here's me:

[sign in to see URL]


Firlefanz is a member there too, and she's been there longer, so maybe she can answer your question better than I can.




Last edited by Joxcenia, 12/4/2016, 2:18 am


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Wattpad is... huge and very much driven by teenagers. I have a few stories on there, and I think I got some sales of my book "Here be Dragons" through the one tale I published there, with a link to the Amazon page. It is possible to leverage Wattpad into helping you with a writer career, but it's not easy. Remember, you're basically offering free samples on there.

It can function as "writing group" in the sense of getting feedback under specific conditions:

- you need to write in a linear fashion and keep posting often (several times a week, better daily), in order to keep fan interest up

- you need to have fans already - which means writing in a genre and setting that has many fans you can attract to your WIP.

- much of Wattpad is fan fiction, both of current series, as well as boy groups. (One Direction, ahem)


I'm glad my little old forum is helping. Are you all members of the Practice Hall? Feel free to use it for posting your work and offering feedback.

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My goal is to finish my story first, then worry about a fanbase later on, should the story be worthy of publication. In my mind, I envision a link to this board and maybe one I will create as the gateway to the community instead of one of the social sites.

The social sites require no thought to use and sometimes I think they also require a member to be intellectually challenged as well. Seriously, some of the things I see on that part of the Internet make a rock look like a genius! emoticon

I feel that if my story is worthy and fans want to find me bad enough then they will also be smart enough to learn how to make a post on the message board format.

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Thanks for the info, Firle and Joxcenia. I have to say it doesn't sound like a good fit for me. Too many people... emoticon And worse yet: Teens! Just kidding. emoticon

Good luck with driving, Joxcenia! I fully understand the nerves, failed four tests because of them. Well I don't consider the last time my fault, two cars were driving the wrong way down a one way street so I went wide around them. Apparently if no one is behind you you're suppose to wait in such situations. This was not taught nor in the manual so... emoticon

Pastor Rick, it seems most publishers want you to already have a fan base. But how can you if you've never been published before?
Are forums and message boards dying? Will we all be required to get blogs and join twitter? Noooo! *Runs from the mad hash-taggers*

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A fantasy tongue twister: Sputtering silver sliver Sphinxes spit splinters.
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quote:

tryingtowrite wrote:

Thanks for the info, Firle and Joxcenia. I have to say it doesn't sound like a good fit for me. Too many people... emoticon And worse yet: Teens! Just kidding. emoticon


You are most welcome. Yeah. I haven't really found a good fit yet.

quote:

Good luck with driving, Joxcenia!


Thanks. Hopefully I'll get less afraid over time. *crosses-fingers*

quote:

I fully understand the nerves, failed four tests because of them. Well I don't consider the last time my fault, two cars were driving the wrong way down a one way street so I went wide around them. Apparently if no one is behind you you're suppose to wait in such situations. This was not taught nor in the manual so... emoticon


Yeah. If it isn't in the manual, how do they expect you to know everything? My school didn't have a Drivers Ed either, so I'm not so sure individual lessons are as good as someone trained to teach.





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quote:

tryingtowrite wrote:
Pastor Rick, it seems most publishers want you to already have a fan base. But how can you if you've never been published before?
Are forums and message boards dying? Will we all be required to get blogs and join twitter? Noooo! *Runs from the mad hash-taggers*

I think what publishers want most is a finished product to work with. One thing I have noticed is that many published and well-known authors sing praises to their editors. That puzzled me because my presumption was authors like Lee Child and David Weber already had the writing and grammar skill set, so, why do they need an editor?

No, message boards are NOT dying, they are settling into a distinct social media niche. Remember when we used to complain about all those users that just posted smilies and never contributed any real content or conversation? Well, most of those users have now gone over to the FB and Twitters of the world and we finally get to see message boards as the conversational media we used to wish for back in the "old days."



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There are different types of editors.

There's the copy editor who basically checks grammar and spelling. If you're secure in your craft, you might not need them.

More important are the editors who check for errors, plot holes and inconsistencies - like a character's eye color changing from blue to brown.

That's what I use beta-readers for, but an experienced editor is worth a lot. If I had the money, that's the first thing I'd invest in.

Message boards are perfect for deep and structured discussions or even group projects that would simply disappear in the void on FB and Twitter.

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