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  • Writer's pictureErin Fedeson

Reviews: Double Edged

Hello and thank you for visiting Waggish Writer.

Today's post is to serve as a bit of a reflection about reviews and what I believe the purpose of the community.

Last night, I received a notification someone reviewed my story, "X-Wielder: Nobody Chasing." The review read: "Your fanfiction is bad, and you should feel bad."

This is probably the first negative review that I have received for my FanFiction. When I look at this review, several things come to mind:

1) There is no explanation of why it is bad and why I should feel bad.

2) The story is not complete, so how can a fanfiction be called 'bad' when the story is still in the works?

3) A writer is always learning. The only way to hone the craft is to write. It can be amazing. It can be crappy. What is important is to keep writing.

In terms of receiving a review, they say a few things about the story:

1) There are those who enjoy a good story.

2) They take time to read the story out of their day, meaning that the content caught their eye.

3) It tells you what kind of readers are out there. Ones who are loyal to the original concepts of the fandom or some who enjoy the author taking risks to explore other ways to interpret the fandom.

4) They can also tell you if the content is not appearing correctly. (I can vouch for that as I wrote about it in my blog post, "Weighing a Writer's Worth.")

5) In this review's case, my story is not their cup of tea. That's okay. There's a whole community out there for them.

With this negative review, I feel it is important to share my thoughts about FanFiction:

1) Everyone is in the community due to a love with a fandom or multiple fandoms.

2) The greatest homage a writer can do for their idols is try their hand to recreate the flavor that captured them in the first place with a personalized twist.

3) A writer's skill level varies person to person, fandom to fandom. I've read great fanfiction. I've read fanfiction that falls on the opposite scale, which I read and move on to explore, taking lessons from what I read. I do not criticize and offer encouragement when it comes due.

4) All writers and readers should respect each other for writers are writing fanfiction for their own enjoyment and sharing it with the universe for free. If someone is to leave a review, offer something for the writer to think about or ways that they can improve their writing or the representation of the fandom.

So, for today, I'll thank the reviewer for providing me with some content to showcase to the universe and show some of my perspective of reviews and FanFiction. As this is an opinion, I do not expect everyone to agree with my reviews. We can therefore agree to disagree.

Thank you for letting me stand on a soapbox for a moment.


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