(I really do love my reviewers, all you amazing, kind, superb, glorious, and magnificent people. Creds to joloco311, FancyPenguin, The12thcookie, Winged Archer1, AC, FangIsFexcellent, shadowgirl711, iizninja, , and my blog is better than yours, for the new feedback and GOING ALL THE WAAAY!)
This is going to be the MOTHER OF ALL CHAPTERS because this includes the topics below:
Itty bitty clichés (you'll see what I mean)
AAAARE YOOOOU REEDAAAAYYYY? Here we go.
WOO HOO YEAH! THE BEST PART! Just kidding. No seriously, you can stop jumping up and down. I GET THAT YOU'RE HAPPY. I know I'll get a mix of responses to this, BUT it must be done. Now, I know I'm not the most consistent updater out there, but I try to stick with this story as much as possible, but unless I get new ideas from YOU GUYS, I probably will be slow to update. CONSIDER THIS YOUR WARNING.
With that out of the way, I have to make a few ideas clear:
1) Be dedicated to your story
THINK: before you write a story, make a goal for yourself for when you want your chapters to be up. For those of you with a lot of free time, this might be every other day or every two or three days**. I know this may be difficult for those of us who have jam-packed schedules, so then I would suggest a more reasonable goal, like once or twice a month. If you know yourself well (like I hope you do), you know if you can or can't keep up with a goal like that. And my theory is that if you can't promise yourself that you will at least try to update once or twice every four weeks, you should question weither or not you want to be committed to a story. If not, then don't write the story. I'm trying to not be a jerk, but it's the truth, not to mention the mature thing to do.
**HOWEVER: in the wise words of iizninja: "its okay not to have an update every week. Actually, if someone updates too frequently it makes it less of a treat. Like if you ate ice cream every day for a year you'd get sick of it and probably hate everything to do with ice cream."
TIP: if you know that you may have trouble updating, do what I do and write in advance. I had the file for my introduction on my computer at least a month in advance of when I actually published it. Be like the movie directors, and write in advance. This means that you can build up your story until about the third chapter before you start putting it out into . Then, publish your first chapter, and then in a week or two, you can write the fourth chapter but issue the second chapter for your dedicated fans to read. This also comes in handy if you notice that two months have gone by and you haven't updated your story. Just whip out one of your reserve chapters and BAM the third chapter is out! Make sense?
2) Size of your chapters is crucial
Now, especially for this topic, I cannot say that my guidelines are always 100% true. You just have to be the judge of what's best for your story.
If you think your reader has a solid block of time to read a chapter where the scroll bar is the size of a toenail clipping, then you have to have a big ol' bucket of ice-cold REALITY splashed all up in your face. WE ARE IN A RECESSION, PEOPLE. I know a whole lotta people that share 2 computers within one family. Even if you are blessed enough to have your own laptop, you should not make others have to be confronted with the inconvenience of having to re-read 10 pages worth of story in the same chapter until the new stuff starts.
When your chapters are shorter, you can then make more of them in one sitting by making a few medium-sized ones instead of one morbidly obese chapter. *SEE: UPDATING*
However, there is a massive difference between a few medium sized chapters and a bunch of two-paragraph useless chapters. Realize that we readers often sort stories by how long they are, (at least I do), and NOT how many chapters there are. In a nutshell: Quality, not quantity.
TIP: If you notice that all of your chapters are as long as or shorter than my introduction chapter, then you should seriously consider smashing two of your chapters together.
DON'T EVEN GET ME STARTED ON ENTIRE CHAPTERS DEDICATED TO AUTHORS NOTES. (Actually, please do, *SEE: AUTHOR'S NOTES*)
I'll keep this section nice and short, because there's not that much to say. However, this is still quite a critical piece in the system of a happy MRFC. Now, as most of us know, we have the flamers, the goody two-shoes, and the hardcore honest people that make a difference in your story (this is the category all of my reviewers fall under, wink wink). I frankly don't get the point of flamers, because all they do is incoherently rant about how 'the story sucks' and 'you're a terrible writer'. But, you know, whatever floats their boat. Fortunately, I have no experience with severe flames, but if you would like to tear down my sorry bottom on this chapter, feel free. If you are a truly determined writer, you don't give a flying fart about a flame. BUUUUTTTT please, notice the difference between a flame and a constructive review that points out flaws.
A good review gives one or two positive areas of the story/writing style, and usually informs you of a weak point in it. This hopefully ends in a motivational phrase to motivate the flow of the writer's creative juices. If you notice you get a piece of advice, then for all that's good in this world TAKE IT. No ifs, ands or buts.
Remember how I made you guys say 'I will not make myself look bad' in my other chapter'? That seemed to work pretty well, so here's another one: "I WILL ONLY USE REVIEWS TO BETTER A STORY". HA! You thought you could get away without saying it, did you? Wrong. Say it. Out loud. Oh, jeez, nevermind, you guys are turning me into a monster.
AUTHOR'S NOTES (A/N)
Let's see a show of hands as to who actually will take 2+ minutes of their precious life to read an entire page/chapter of author's notes. Yeah, exactly. So WHY ARE THEY WRITTEN? Good question, grasshopper. Sensei StupidIsMyMiddleName thinks it may be for a few reasons:
1) People feel guilty
I understand this, really, I do. Writers feel bad about abandoning their story for the past 6 months and they tell you how school and sports and family business and internet problems have kept them away from this lovely website we share. But see below: WE DON'T CARE. I know I'm being redundant, but I know for a fact it still will not get through some people's thick heads. When I wait for a story to be updated, I don't want to get that e-mail and see only an author's note about how they have no time to write. In fact, I just want to smash my head against my desk because they NOTIMETOWRITE.
2) Writers think we actually CARE about their personal life
We don't need to know that you had the best flavor of ice cream ever yesterday. I'm sorry, I know I'm being rude, but it's true. We MR fans (for the most part) don't know James Patterson's plans for this weekend, why should we know yours? Yeah. We shouldn't. Plus, whatever happened to internet safety? Don't go around blabbing about how you're going to be in New York with your family at a certain hotel in a certain room at a certain time. Plus, no one wants another one of those school assemblies.
OMGOMGOMG you kidnapped a character! LET ALL GO CRAZY AND SMASH OUR FACES AGAINST OUR COMPUTER SCREENS AND FLIIIIP OOUUUTT! Sadly, and contrary to many people's beliefs, we do not react like this when we browse stories. In fact, we are almost all guaranteed to skip it and just scroll right along. There are quite a few reasons WE ARE NOT FOOLED 1) we are (for the most part, some people I'm not so sure about...) all above the age of five. 2) We know, even though it kills us to say this, that MAXIMUM RIDE IS SCIENCE-FICTION. Let me repeat that: FICTION. As in NOT REAL. And finally 3) unless you are also a genetically engineered mutant, you wouldn't stand a chance against 6 ninja-like winged angst-ridden teenagers. I don't care how cool you think you are when you cackle MWAHAHAHAHA, you are no match for them.
This is an excellent example of not following Nike's instructions. DON'T do it. Be professional, please. At least in your story cuz I dnt care if u rite lik dis on a pm or in ur reviews.
ITTY BITTY CLICHÉ'S
We all know them, and they add no ZAP to a story the following is a much-too-long list of overused phrases/sayings. They immediately label you as unoriginal and dull.
-Fang's eyes are always described as 'onyx'
-Lissa's a slut whose skirt doesn't cover her butt.
-Max's chocolate chip cookie obsession
-the wing necklace that Max oh-so conveniently always has.
-Max's abusive relationship with her father and/or boyfriend
-Max has to raise Gazzy/Angel even though she is just their sister.
-Max 'burning water' or 'making cereal inedible'
-Gazzy insists in farting profusely (thanks FlYegurl) in small, cramped area, everyone clears out of the room.
-the one freaking line in the first book no one forgets because fang comes ninjaciously out of nowhere behind Max and she yells "STOP THAT" he says: "what, breathing?"
-Max way-to-easily giving into a makeover by Nudge and Angel in which they make her look 'ZOMG SOOOO HAWT'
-Nudge saying ZOMG
-Angel's hair is like a halo around her head.
No one can describe this better than FlYegurl in her story All Is Well In Cliché Land. You really should check it out, because I literally laughed out loud reading this. Read it. READ IT. READIT.
(A/N Sleeping In-The Postal Service, We All Want the Same Thing-Kevin Michael, It's All Gone Quiet [The Week That Was Mix]-Snow Patrol)