New Member Orientation
Congratulations! You took the plunge and joined the community. We know that for many of you, this is the first time you have shared your writing. But whether you are a beginner writer, an aspiring writer, or a published writer, the site is full of members who are eager to meet you, read your writing, and help you refine your craft.
What to Expect
After you submit your first piece of writing, it will be featured on the homepage, on the Read and Review page and other areas of the site. Depending on the time of day, and how many members are on, you may start to receive reviews as quickly as five minutes after posting your piece. Many members have received over 20 reviews on a poem or short story, and hundreds of reviews on a novel. You will receive more feedback if you start reviewing yourself and making yourself visible on the site.
Responding to Reviews
For every review you receive, the site asks you to rate how helpful it was. You can also provide a quick, optional message back to the writer. Most reviewers appreciate hearing from you and are anxious to learn if their feedback was helpful.
All of the reviews you receive are tallied, and based on a formula the site has developed, your work is given a rank. Rankings are done separately for novels, poems, and short stories. If your poem is ranked 315th it means there are 314 poems above you on the list. All new work starts at the bottom and rises as it is reviewed.
Do not despair if you have a low ranking!! The ranking is just one measure of your writing. It measures not only the quality of what you have posted , but your ability to market yourself and your writing to readers. Quality, appeal, and promotion are all necessary ingredients to becoming a best-selling writer. Work on each of these, and your rank will improve. Click here to read an insightful post on this topic.
Receiving Review Feedback
You will also receive feedack on the reivews you have given. Read the feedback and see if your comments are helpful. If someone doesn't find the comment helpful, think about why. If you feel they didn't appreciate the time you took to read and review their work, then don't read and review them again.
Giving Review Feedback
When giving feedback we ask members of the site to be honest but considerate. Writers post their work so that they can receive constructive criticism that will help them make it better. Reviews should not only support the rating that you have given, but provide the writer with some thoughts on improving their work. In general, the following format works well for providing feedback:
1. Start by telling the author what you liked about the piece.
2. Let them know what you think needs work and provide a couple of examples. The more specific the better.
3. Close with encouragement or a final thought.
The goal is not to dishearten writers, but to motivate them to improve what they have posted.
Getting to Know You
We asked writers on the site what we should tell new members, and here's what they said:
1. Be honest but considerate. Writers on the site are here to improve their work. They appreciate feedback that points out the flaws in their writing and thoughts on how to improve it. But be sure to be considerate and never post comments that are personal or disparaging.
2. Be ready to receive honest feedback. Don't become defensive if you get a less than perfect review. The readers on the site are here to point out areas where they think you can improve your writing. They want you to succeed. Let them know if the feedback was helpful or what type of help you are looking for. Published writers on the site have received less-than-perfect scores.
3. Get to Know Us . Spend a few minutes on the site. Read the feedback that others have given. Visit the Site Forum. It's the best place to get a feel for the site and the community. Be sure to introduce yourself in the Introduce Yourself thread. You can also read the history of the site in the Weekly Recap.
Other Helpful Resources
You Can Always Contact Us
Lastly, feel free to contact us with your thoughts and questions.