Re: An apology to my readers

#1
So I have a few chapters posted and I basically have fallen off the face of RR, mostly due to lack of motivation to do anything
To that I say, sorry to all those interested in my story and all those, however few of you, have waited patiently for a new piece of my story.


If anyone has any advice on how to bring myself to continue, I'm all ears. It's just so difficult when I receive no response no reward.

Re: An apology to my readers

#4

Dubs Wrote: Exactly as the guy above said. If you're writing for people to like your stuff, you won't get satisfaction unless you yourself like it. Write something that YOU find interesting. If you don't find it interesting, don't write it. Simple as that.


There is no contradiction. I, for example, have a lot of ideas and I like all of them, to some extent. But to chose with which one I should stick I rely on the response I get. Most successful writers write what they like, but, at the same time, they research the market and try to write in a way that other people would love as well. Also, I think it is obvious, but if you want your fiction to be popular you first need to get a decent hold over grammar. This is something I struggle with as English isn't my native language. Almost all popular stories on RR don't have many grammar issues and are written by natives.

Re: An apology to my readers

#5
I'm gonna link you my post here (and paste it down below). 


Quote:As far as readership goes, I'm probably pleb-tier, because up until a few months ago, I gave zero fucks whether or not anyone read my works. The point (at the time) was not to be read, the point was to write, and write well. 

I love writing. I didn't need acknowledgement from others to get that feeling. I just needed to write and write and write. I ... still don't need the acknowledgement from others to get that feeling. 
I would love for people to read my work. That'd be fuckin' great. You know what? A few people are. It feels pretty good to get feedback. But the secret is I love the idea of writing. the concept of writing. the process of writing. the research, the editing, the revising. developing, exploration, experimentation, the "What if I tried _____?" and the thrill of success or the bitterness of disappointment. 

Finally, there's that massive cathartic rush when you finish a fucking project and you throw yourself down in your chair and you're like "IT'S FUCKING DONE!" 
Your heart pounds like a fucking hammer, there's this euphoric wave that washes over you. I can't describe it well enough to do it justice. You're excited, exhausted, exhilarated, you feel like you could run twenty miles and sleep twenty years at the same time. You jump and dance and prance around like an idiot yelling 
"HA HA HA, IT'S FUCKING DONE, FUCK YES OH MY GOD I CAN'T BELIEVE I DID IT, IT TOOK DAYS/ MONTHS/ YEARS BUT I FUCKING DID IT FUCK YES GO ME!"

Feels pretty good, man. 



I don't need the approval of others to write. Frankly, I do it for myself. 
I love the idea of people reading my works, but it's not why I do it. 

Now we move on the second part: 

Artists have it easy. I mean, they just have to cater to the lowest common denominator and nobody actually gives a shit. 
You could be like, the world's worst fucking artist, and be all, "Hey guys, look, (  。) (  。) boobs lol" and everyone is all OMFG TAKE ALL MY MONEY $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* but a writer, an author has to cater to an extremely fucking discriminating audience and nobody- nobody fucking cares more about your writing than you. Nobody is more profoundly affected by your writing than you.

People, People just read it, and they put the book down and go about their lives, but you- There's an entire fucking world in your head, filled with entire civilizations of cool and interesting and unique people that live and breathe and love and hate and die and you do your damndest to bring it out and show people and call attention to it and say LOOK LOOK AT THIS FUCKING THING, IT CAME OUT OF MY FUCKING SOUL and everyone's like "yeah well, that's real fuckin' neato." like they've seen an entire fucking universe being born before. That hurts, but you know what? I do it, I write, I'm an author, because I need to be. 

Now I don't know if this resonates with you at all, but I think of it as something critically important for me. I need to be an author. Not for other people, but for myself. 
If other people love my works, that's fucking great! That's awesome! But first, I have to live up to my own expectations first. 

Re: An apology to my readers

#7
Nestor1079 Wrote: Artists have it easy. I mean, they just have to cater to the lowest common denominator and nobody actually gives a shit. 
You could be like, the world's worst fucking artist, and be all, "Hey guys, look, (  。) (  。) boobs lol" and everyone is all OMFG TAKE ALL MY MONEY $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* but a writer, an author has to cater to an extremely fucking discriminating audience and nobody- nobody fucking cares more about your writing than you. Nobody is more profoundly affected by your writing than you.


I'm not sure why you felt the need to attack artists here, but I can safely say you have never been one if you believe what you just said. As somebody who has spent most of my life being an artist, I can say that being good at either writing or art is pretty difficult. My personal experience has been that writing is easier because you can pull a story apart and give it adequate space to convey the information you want. Whereas storytelling within a picture, you have to convey a lot of information in a very condensed format. Imagining something is fairly easy. Describing it with words is somewhat difficult. But crystallizing it into a picture is the most difficult thing to do. There is nowhere to hide. If you fail it is right there for everybody to see at a glance.

Saying all artists have to do is draw boobs to succeed isn't far off from saying all a writer has to do is add trashy sex scenes to their story. In both cases if it is poorly done nobody will be impressed.

Re: An apology to my readers

#10
If you haven't tried it, then I can't really explain it in a way that would be easy to understand. Perhaps the old saw that "a picture is worth a thousand words" sums it up the best.

Just to be clear, I'm not denigrating the work of a writer. I'm just saying that many more words can be written in the time it takes to create a single picture. So there are a lot more work hours available for a writer to solve the problem of storytelling comparatively.

I've spent upwards of 1000 hours on a single painting. I could easily write a book during the same timeframe. Somebody is just going to look at that painting for a few moments at most. Whereas with the book they will dedicate many hours to reading it. These things are not equal, and treating art as if it is somehow an easier path than writing is something that only those who have never done it could say.

Here is an example. That watercolor painting took me roughly 100 hours to produce. How long do you think it would take a writer to craft an equally satisfying short story of the same subject? How much time would the reader dedicate to appreciating the story, compared to a viewer of the painting?

Re: An apology to my readers

#11
Yeah I'm not much of an artist at all (to put it lightly lmao), but I have a sibling who takes it seriously. She owns multiple instructional books that are literal bricks by weight. Once, I tried going through one of her beginner books on perspective. It's something like three hundred pages long and was more in depth than some of my uni textbooks. I gave it a few days of my holiday once and I have to say that even though the instructions were quite clean, I estimate that it'd take me at least a month of full time study to properly do all the exercises of just that one book. That's just perspectice. And ofc to paint boobs properly you not only need to draw the body in right perspective, you also need to understand anatomy (that's bone structure, muscle and soft tissues, all of which should be memorized to at least a basic degree if you want to get good at drawing bodies) as well as light, shadow, color, and composition. That's just the theoretical stuff tho. Then there's the practical application of mastering stuff like inking or handling the medium of choice. If you can't do that to at least some degree, the audience will just look for other, more skilled, artists for their 2D boobs lol. 

Respect the artists, if they get good at what they do it's because they're mad dedicated. They're chasing their dreams. 

Anyway, back on topic!

In my case, I write and discard a lot of stories and I know I'll discard most of them when I begin typing. That's fine. It's all just entertainment. I just don't upload them. But there are stories that stay with me and that I want to finish, and that's because they matter to me at a core level. It's easy to get attached to certain characters or scenes that would be funny, but what in that story is you? The stories that stays in my heart and I want to finish are the ones that are about... me. They're personal, even though people wouldn't be able to tell as my characters are quite different from me. And writing them becomes healing, almost, because I need to look to myself and remember why this or that matters to me. So it won't matter if other people don't read them. It's about untangling myself, and I just happen to do so in a way that lends itself to the paper and the word. 

This doesn't need to be your reason to write, but it could be. And you probably should have a reason beyond the gratification of having readers, if you want to write for the long term, because as you've seen readers are fickle.

Re: An apology to my readers

#13
It's very easy to make assumptions about arts you have no experience in.

No art is inherently easier than the other. Both written and visual arts require an insane amount of dedication, both can be done sloppily to satisfy the lowest common denominator, and both have vastly more supply than demand. Mastering writing is a lifelong undertaking; so is mastering painting or sculpting or photography or character design. All have their unique challenges, different ways to succeed and fail.

Colouring and lighting are different from anatomy and perspective; grammar and sentence flow are different from storytelling and pacing. One can be an excellent pencil artist who can't colour, or an excellent technical writer who can't maintain tension.

It's easy to look at something you don't understand and say 'this picture's lines are so clean' or 'that story is so gripping' and not notice that the anatomy is off or the grammar is horrible. The closer to mastery you come in your own field, the more you notice the flaws and the easier it is to say 'well, this art is obviously the hardest one' when in reality it's just that you haven't looked closely enough to understand what actual mastery looks like in the other field.

Re: An apology to my readers

#15

Quote:You could be like, the world's worst fucking artist, and be all, "Hey guys, look, (  。) (  。) boobs lol" and everyone is all OMFG TAKE ALL MY MONEY $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* but a writer, an author has to cater to an extremely fucking discriminating audience and nobody- nobody fucking cares more about your writing than you. Nobody is more profoundly affected by your writing than you.


This is incredibly reductive and a good example of the Dunning–Kruger effect in both the subject of writing and art.



Quote:According to Betsy Wollheim, Patrick Rothfuss' editor and publisher, she's never seen a word of book three of the Kingkiller Chronicles and doesn't think Rothfuss has written anything since 2014.



Yeah I just feel really bad for Rothfuss at this point, he should have cancelled the book or communicated that he is on indefinite break and worked on something else. Instead he is trapped in this self-torturing hell where he can't summon the motivation to work on it but can't give up on his promise to finish it. So he spends all his time procrastinating and playing games on twitch or doing charitable works or anything but writing. That kind of existence is miserable. It's a real shame he didn't have any friends or family strong enough to set him straight.

For op: 

Motivation: cut out distractions to write easier. Our brains crave stimulation and writing is low on the totem pole when it comes to stimulation, games or tv or reading or internet browsing are something our brains would prefer, cut them out and you can negotiate down to writing with your brain as it is starved for stimulation.

Post on more sites too, I recommend you post on scribblehub, and to a lesser extent webnovel, you may have luck getting responses for motivation on there


Re: An apology to my readers

#16

Half Wrote:
Nestor1079 Wrote: Artists have it easy. I mean, they just have to cater to the lowest common denominator and nobody actually gives a shit. 
You could be like, the world's worst fucking artist, and be all, "Hey guys, look, (  。) (  。) boobs lol" and everyone is all OMFG TAKE ALL MY MONEY $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* $ *cha-ching* but a writer, an author has to cater to an extremely fucking discriminating audience and nobody- nobody fucking cares more about your writing than you. Nobody is more profoundly affected by your writing than you.


I'm not sure why you felt the need to attack artists here, but I can safely say you have never been one if you believe what you just said. As somebody who has spent most of my life being an artist, I can say that being good at either writing or art is pretty difficult. My personal experience has been that writing is easier because you can pull a story apart and give it adequate space to convey the information you want. Whereas storytelling within a picture, you have to convey a lot of information in a very condensed format. Imagining something is fairly easy. Describing it with words is somewhat difficult. But crystallizing it into a picture is the most difficult thing to do. There is nowhere to hide. If you fail it is right there for everybody to see at a glance.

Saying all artists have to do is draw boobs to succeed isn't far off from saying all a writer has to do is add trashy sex scenes to their story. In both cases if it is poorly done nobody will be impressed.



While I wouldn't attack artists the way the person above did, I would say that it seems like artists have an easier time getting an audience than authors do. I say this because it takes no time at all to show someone a piece of art and then they either like it or they don't. But authors face a higher barrier of entry and require more from their potential audience. A person has to read the description and be willing to devote time to reading the first chapter, which not everyone is. Hell, I can't even get most of my close friends to read my book, but everyone looks at my wife's paintings.

Note, I'm not saying that artists have an easier time making a living than authors or anything, or that art is an easier medium to work in, but getting buy-in from a potential audience member is far easier than getting buy-in from a potential reader.

Re: An apology to my readers

#17

Half Wrote: Here is an example. That watercolor painting took me roughly 100 hours to produce. How long do you think it would take a writer to craft an equally satisfying short story of the same subject? How much time would the reader dedicate to appreciating the story, compared to a viewer of the painting?



That's a watercolor? The hell?

You are obviously a space wizard and I welcome you as my new overlord and master.

Re: An apology to my readers

#18

Stratothrax Wrote:
Quote:According to Betsy Wollheim, Patrick Rothfuss' editor and publisher, she's never seen a word of book three of the Kingkiller Chronicles and doesn't think Rothfuss has written anything since 2014.



Yeah I just feel really bad for Rothfuss at this point, he should have cancelled the book or communicated that he is on indefinite break and worked on something else. Instead he is trapped in this self-torturing hell where he can't summon the motivation to work on it but can't give up on his promise to finish it. So he spends all his time procrastinating and playing games on twitch or doing charitable works or anything but writing. That kind of existence is miserable. It's a real shame he didn't have any friends or family strong enough to set him straight.



I feel like GRRM is in the same boat. I mean, we will never get a decent end to GOT thanks to that terrible finale for the series.

Re: An apology to my readers

#19


Quote:
While I wouldn't attack artists the way the person above did, I would say that it seems like artists have an easier time getting an audience than authors do. I say this because it takes no time at all to show someone a piece of art and then they either like it or they don't.



Getting discovered and building an audience as an artist online is actually pretty hard. Churning out average stuff will get you pretty much nowhere so you either need to be exceptionally good, have a rare niche, or have an interesting style you can use as a brand. Yes artists have an easier time with on the spot instant consuming of content but it's really not worth much if it doesnt translate into a follow or a share which is extremely difficult to do with just random pictures you've painted. Authors have one huge advantage that artists generally do not: Sequential content that holds the viewers attention for extended periods of time. That is incredibly incredibly valuable.

Re: An apology to my readers

#20

Stratothrax Wrote:
Quote:
While I wouldn't attack artists the way the person above did, I would say that it seems like artists have an easier time getting an audience than authors do. I say this because it takes no time at all to show someone a piece of art and then they either like it or they don't.



Getting discovered and building an audience as an artist online is actually pretty hard. Churning out average stuff will get you pretty much nowhere so you either need to be exceptionally good, have a rare niche, or have an interesting style you can use as a brand. Yes artists have an easier time with on the spot instant consuming of content but it's really not worth much if it doesnt translate into a follow or a share which is extremely difficult to do with just random pictures you've painted. Authors have one huge advantage that artists generally do not: Sequential content that holds the viewers attention for extended periods of time. That is incredibly incredibly valuable.

I can't second this enough. There's truly no shortage of really skilled artist on social media who barely have a following at all.