Author has written 7 stories for Yu-Gi-Oh, Harry Potter, Death Note, Tokyo Mew Mew, Black Cat, Aquarion Evol/アクエリオンEVOL, Ouran High School Host Club, and Inuyasha.
Ad Infinitum - Chapter 2 is up. Working on chapter 3: 1 percent done. On hiatus.
Golden Abyss- (GA) Chapter 4 is up! Working on chapter 5: 1 percent done. On hiatus.
Green and Gold- Chapter 11 is up! Working on chapter 12: 41 percent done. (For any explicit scenes mentioned in my A/N's, check out the NSFW at Archive of Our Own. I also have a if you're curious to solely check out the sporadically-updated, illustrated visual narrative.)
It's So Wrong and Yet So Right- (ISWAYSR) Discontinued.
Moonlight Sonata- (MS) Finished. Completed.
Trival Affections-(TA) Chapter 10 is up. Working on chapter 11: 1 percent done.
Note to people: Welcome to my profile! Look around, look around! You're certainly welcome to browse through my ramblings. If you wish to PM me about anything other than a couple of questions for any of my stories, I'd appreciate if you'd please scroll through my PERSONAL OPINION CORNER first below before contacting me. Thank you!
Now then, to those that believe strongly against same sex relationships, I would like to warn you most of my story content has relation to such. I like taking up the pairing challenge. If it goes against your beliefs...I respect you and let's please be rational, sensible human beings who part peacefully. If homosexual romances are not your cup of tea and you don't want to give my stories a cursory look, you could simply click the back button and read other marvelous fiction!
PERSONAL ADDRESS TO FLAMERS:
This is the most I'll say: regardless of whether you log in or post anonymously, you're still racketing up the number of reviews I have, thereby making the story you're flaming even more popular. You're certainly entitled to the right of your freedom of speech. But while I feel flattered that my story elicited a passionate response in you, instead of feeling hurt, chances are I am more embarrassed that you've wasted your efforts on me. Don't be juvenile. Ask yourself what your goal is. If you want a story to fail, you have better luck just pretending it doesn't exist and that reading it is beneath you. Don't contribute to the hype if your goal isn't to give it more free publicity. A "bad" review is not going to deter people from reading the story or the author from continuing it. Very little reviews will. If you're roasting the person solely to be an outlier to a popular story, I hope you have written it convincingly. Chances are it may be seen as a joke if the tone of your vernacular is ludicrous or dramatically different from everyone else's opinions. The key to constructing a credible insult is to pick on what a lot of people are bothered by, and not just you. If you're flaming because of your beliefs, you have very little effect trying to force it on others. Consider writing a story yourself, so that more people start gaining awareness. If you want me to change something, instead consider writing a constructive crit.
Flames won't make me delete my stories or my account or the scene that bothered you. Nor will I give you attention in my stories or Author Notes. I will not address your existence in any of my chapters. You'll probably just inspire a moment of brief entertainment before I put it out of my mind if I cannot find it credible. I'm certain you're a smart individual with better things to do than trying to get my attention. Any interaction you'll get from me is very rare, dear. I know when to pick my battles. If you genuinely want me to notice you, for whatever reason–however short my reply will be–at least use that courage of yours and log in.
GENERAL ADDRESS TO FLAMERS
However, if you intend to target other writers, in the words of the late kydasam, "it takes courage and character to place something so intensely personal as the stories I've read out on public display." Please try to exercise restraint and common decency, least you contribute to their lack of self-confidence and depression. I'm asking you to think about the person behind the screen that you're trying to belittle or demotivate. Not everyone has a thick skin or a hardy sense of humor. Or even the ability to accept criticisms without taking it as some form of a personal attack. (People may react with emotion than with logic or indifference.) If you are feeling frustrated or jaded by a trend you keep seeing, don't take it out on other people. Your words have consequences. You are not giving them humility by trying to shred their egos. You are not so much converting them or having a trolling fun time than you are cyberbullying them. There are some people of more extreme and/or sensitive souls that I'm frightened to see their self-esteems be torn into pieces. It's not a joke to them. Many writers I see on this site are of a young demographic whose writing skills, psyche and self-confidence are still developing. If you are trying to get people to notice you, there are healthier alternatives, advantageous and beneficial to you and everyone else.
At least consider their motivations for writing. They may not be doing it as a way of clearing their mind of distractions. They may not be trying to experiment or trying to start making a name for themselves. They may write simply for the reason that it makes them feel alive and for once feel confident and help them destress from their hectic lives. They may be writing to minimize their anxiety in social conventions. They may look to positive reviews as a way of bolstering their mood. They may be writing personalities they wish they were instead in real life or incidents they wished happened or have happened. Taking someone down a peg is only a momentary thrill. I understand you might be feeling bored or loyal to another author or you're feeling just as terrible, but don't bring vulnerable people down. Your words have an impact.
Even "shitty authors" with "shitty stories" can mature as a writer with the proper encouragements and constructive criticisms. It takes time for skills to mature and be polished. It's our responsibility to nurture their talent, not to stop them from writing completely or to make them feel like worthless human beings. Instead of wasting your valuable time, you could perhaps close your browser and spend it on something more worthwhile? Or if you want to try constructive critiques, go ahead.
HOW TO WRITE A CRITIQUE AND HAVE THE WRITER TAKE YOU SERIOUSLY:
First of all, what is constructive criticism? "It is the process of offering valid and well-reasoned opinions about the work of others, usually involving both positive and negative comments, in a friendly manner rather than an oppositional one. The purpose of constructive criticism is to improve the outcome."
Have you ever written a critical review which was ignored or met with a prickly lip or met with the ever-so-common "don't read it if you don't like it"? It mostly has to do with the way you'd constructed your crit. Not everyone has a thick-skin or have come to understand crits are not a personal attack. Which brings me to my next point: I've been noticing a trend here specific to this site that baffles me. And I feel slightly sorry for some people. So, in my profile this will be my one and only time I'll be giving my attention to this matter. It's albeit harsh. Here are some advices on writing constructive criticism that should get an author to reply favorably or to get them to take you seriously:
AS A PERSONAL NOTE: You are entirely welcome to give me constructive criticism! As you see, I'm open to suggestions and have edited my content based on a few that I've agreed with! I acknowledge my mistakes. But while I generally don't take critiques as a personal attack, I can get irritated by a lack of tact or if I can sniff out discrepancies from what's being claimed. I am a designer. Criticisms–receiving them and giving them–are a part of my daily schedule. I understand they are to promote the level of my work and make it better than it is. I've also learnt to pick and choose which ones to listen to and which ones to disregard. It doesn't bother me if not everyone likes what I present since everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I can't satisfy everyone's needs, so I focus on the demographic that matters, least my project become muddled and far from its original vision. But out of respect to those that had logged in and had written eloquently (even if it's lacking any real constructive feedback, I can distinguish a flame from a crit), you may get a civil if not a bit irritated reply back. Because, really? I'd rather my audience to be a respectful and courteous crowd where we can share our insights and opinions freely without dropping insults or taking immature potshots at each other like children. See what I did there? Hasty conclusions are not so much hurtful as it is "smh."
LONG STORY SHORT: The fanfiction you're reading is offered for free, so there is very little motivation for the author to edit their content than if they were paid. So I am giving you a method that should lend you credibility and not an instant rejection of your advice. However, authors are not obliged to listen or to stop writing something per se, if it goes against their plot or if they're disinclined to put in the effort. In other words, don't be sad if your criticism seemingly contributed very little to their writing. Be happy that your words were hopefully taken seriously! If you've made a valid point, your words will influence them as they write future installments like sticky gum. But it doesn't work as well if you make it seem like a personal attack. Remember, you want your time to have been well spent and not be disregarded! Much luck and happy writings!
Occupation: Full-time student at a private design institution
Major: Environmental Design (spatial experiences based on the psychology of user interaction and narratives...in short, everything from architecture to interior design)
Writing Style: Overwhelmingly detailed and hopefully a lot of thought put into a project! I realize most of it can fly over people's heads but when I'm passionate about something, my enthusiasm cannot be contained! I'd like to try anything at least once so long as it fits the context. Suggestions are generally welcomed so long as they're reasonable. Mm, I update slowly, because if I haven't run out of inspiration or time, usually I wait for a sufficient sample size of reviews (the quantity differs with the popularity of each story) to understand what has been well-received/understood, what has flown over people's heads, or where people think I'm taking the plot. I'm fond of taking branching scenarios and, based on reader feedback, then deciding where to go with them. I also like to touch on cultural aspects in my stories and having characters interpret a scenario/dialogue from various perspectives. So, multiple POV shifts are to be expected.
Preferred Reading Content: Long, well-thought out plots and character development, with a bit of originality. I adore detective fiction and crime novellas. Literature with historical content, action, suspense, believable romances, relateable characters and/or extraordinary villains are also great pluses for me. Sci-fi on the other hand...there's only been one or two pieces that I'd been intrigued enough to purchase for my private library. Futuristic, technological terminology can overwhelm me. The same applies for the fantasy genre. Guilty pleasures include silliness such as PWP, nonfiction classics, humor, purple prose, satirical pieces, supernatural and/or trashy romances.
Personality: I am generally a mild-mannered, open-minded designer who likes listening to feedback and other people's thoughts, and trying to understand where they're coming from before voicing my penultimate reply. Personally I consider myself an introvert, but with my career choice I've managed to become an overly friendly social butterfly whose mind crashes in privacy after a long day of interaction. Caffeine and sleep are the nectars of life. I like surrounding myself with people of great attitudes and great drives; people who are focused but can crack a joke. Solemn or critical personalities are a-ok with me, but when they start chewing out the colleagues and decisions I care for deeply, I have to take a step back and breathe. There are admittedly moments where I can't hold in the judgmental side of my personality. Courtesy and education are exceptionally significant to me, so my patience can be tested when those lines are crossed. I've been so fixated on pursuing my childhood ambitions I hardly have the time to lose focus or let anyone stop me from fulfilling them. I work odd hours just to complete a deadline, knowing I've got people invested or counting on me, so it baffles me when I see some people wasting their precious time or money that may not even be theirs. See, serious and judgmental. (Nah, I'm only an introspective snob. Most of the time I'm like that annoying woman who smiles a lot or laughs in awkward and/or stressful situations and blathers on a lot. Yep.)
Advice: Oh! For anyone about to fill out applications, you need to be certain that college or work environment is the right fit for you. Then it should be a brilliant, rewarding experience where you'll learn a lot and interact with many different people across vast professions. After my initial anxiety and fears, now I don't regret it one bit. Even with the stress. It toughens you! :)
PERSONAL OPINION CORNER:
POSITIVES: These are mostly the ones that have taken me by surprise, and in a good way.
Constructive Criticisms: Design them for suggestions of improvement, and not demotivating insults for tearing down a person. Sure, it may initially put a dart in our pride but good authors who care about their craft and reading fan-base are happy to own up to their mistakes by editing their content. But personally while I may give my opinion, the author is not obligated to agree. It makes me happy when authors inform me that they'll be willing to consider it, should they happen to concur. If not, it's their story so I am at peace with their disagreement.
Genderbending: There are many reasons why a character is genderbent. One, the author may have issues writing about same sex relationships. Two, he or she has a plot that requires the character to experience events in the perspective of the opposite sex. Three, they're fulfilling a fantasy of theirs or it is fanservice. Or four, it is a shameless self-insert or Mary-sue/Gary-Sue or OC that is under the pretense of being a fandom character in order to get people interested and racket up story popularity. There are cons with each underlying reason, but sometimes something good can come from them.
Male Pregnancies (Mpreg): ...I admit I've read quite a lot. I can't help it when the stories with the most reviews have it. Personally I don't go out of my way to read Mpreg stories, but there are some well-written ones who celebrate the phenomenon and pay it the respect it deserves. When it's just used for mindless angst-fuel, coupled with unneeded male feminization, I get annoyed. When authors realistically portray it and give it sound reasoning, I am impressed.
Original Characters (OCs): With prolonged exposure, I've grown to accept original characters who are not the main focus (or if they are, at least they are overshadowed by the canonical characters, thank goodness). Some authors have also made these OCs important plot devices, but fortunately they are well-written enough that I do not get the impression they are disgustingly perfect or are shallow self-inserts. I'm of the opinion when an author includes OCs, it's difficult for them to maintain focus. So when a story does not veer towards ruin, I can admire the author's skill at making an original character have a decent personality or making us readers root for their demise by our protagonist's hands. I've come across good authors who can give their OCs appearances and personalities that are both attractive and flawed, and write them in a way that suits the environment or plot.
Purple-Prose: I snicker and roll my eyes whenever writers utilize this. Yet, over the years, I have come to tolerate flowery descriptions and poetic rhetoric should the characters and plot hold my interest. It's because of my bemused tolerance and several authors' influence that I have grown fond of purple-prose, should the content be well-written and developed. I mean, I could always skip the hammy bits and instead focus on what's really driving the story. Physical descriptions are the least important to me as a reader personally.
Well-Written Stories/ Summaries: Badly-written ones make me cringe and the ones with the most potential, I cannot help but feel sorry for the authors when it is so shoddily written. First impressions are everything. Typically readers like stories that are coherent and don't make us labor through it just to understand a sentence. At first I can tolerate it in the rare occasions that I am interested but when there is no sign of improvement the further I go into the story, I grow frustrated and have to drop it for sake of my sanity. It's just, however an author's plot may be clichéd, when their story or summary is well-written and grammatically-correct and has the correct punctuation and has correct spelling most of the time, I'm more inclined to give that story a chance. I'm also more forgiving of their mistakes. I identify with authors having typos obviously not intended to show up, based on the syntax of their content. The worst offenders are foreign authors that candidly state English is not their first language. However I admire their willingness to improve and to take the chance to reedit their stories based on reader feedback. This can also be applied to English-fluent authors. It's something about a well-written story that gives me the illusion that I'm reading a professionally-published book.
NEGATIVES: I'm not discouraging writers, as there are markets for everything I have issues with listed below, but these are the top reasons that I personally can be taken out of a story or get irritated by. I generally avoid reading anything that has these. And yes, I may generalize to prove a point.
Begging or Holding a Story Hostage for Reviews: When I see this, it is more pitiful than aggravating. This, I've noticed, mostly occurs among beginning or young writers, based on the assumption that it is alright to conduct themselves in this manner solely because others have done so as well. I've fallen into this pitfall too in my earlier writings, so I am more sympathetic of this pet peeve than anything else. Yet I am still annoyed when I see this. Note, I have a talent in reading materials at an astonishing pace (literally, I've read JK Rowling's OotP in several hours and when quizzed by a disbelieving parent, I was able to recite any scene with startling accuracy), so I can afford to peruse through a seemingly less-then-stellar story, even with its questionable summary or plot, in order to be fair and see if it's actually any better. But, it is a human inclination to form initial first impressions of anything. I need to be hooked. So when I read a summary or the first chapter, the instant I see that the author wasting space by telling me it is their first story, that their story is better than their summary, that they suck at summaries so they're not even going to try writing one, or that I should simply click to find out more...I've already formed the opinion that the story's not for me. Even if you're stumped at coming up with compelling summaries, at least try to write something that warns your readers what they're getting themselves into, or at least succinctly describe your concept so that we can see if it's for us. Throw in a question. Heck, you can even write how this story is different from everyone else's. Give yourself a little credit. Don't beg for sympathy or attention. It's demeaning to you and to me. You are not making your fanfiction seem cooler or more mysterious by withholding a summary. You are merely wasting the reader's time and losing a fair amount of interest you could've gotten had you advertised your story. You are your own PR agent. There are hundreds of other stories out there, so why would you think we'd give yours a chance if we don't know what we're reading? Reel us in. And, I'm sorry to say this, dear, but when you beg for your readers to go easy on you because it's your first story, you're potentionally inviting yourself to a mean-spirited predator or a troll. It can happen. Bullies like weak prey. When you beg us to "R&R" or write that you won't be updating until you get a specific number of votes or reviews...chances are you'll piss off your fan-base than getting them to rush to meet your quota. You'd have to be extraordinarily confident and decently skilled at writing in order to successfully pull this off. I say this because when I see this happen, the stories that demand this usually fall very short of achieving their goal. If you desire to ask for reviews, at least make it sound nicer and not begging. Don't demand.
Certain Cliches/ Tropes: Nothing is original anymore. Therefore we can only take our spin on what is contrived and hopefully make it our own. But sometimes I see lazy or unimaginative recycled writing both in the real world and fanfiction, that I cannot suspend my disbelief any longer. Almost every writer falls into these cliched traps. It personally annoys me when, in modern timelines, the more "submissive" romantic lead acts in any way inferior to the more "dominant" romantic lead for no other reason than the fact that it is a cute, kitschy Hollywood formula/ trope they do not even bother to make slightly original. It personally annoys me to see any infinitives/verbs related to this person who "sighed" or "blushed" or "pouted" or "smirked" for the umpteenth time in what is considered a serious, non-satirical piece. It annoys me when strong characters advertised to be so become two-dimensional cardboard cutouts who do nothing but whine and depend on others without given the ability to act on their own free will irrelevantly to the plot. It annoys me when the protagonists' common sense is lacking or unfortunately have the IQ of a rock when s/he doesn't need to be that way. I have a lot of other pet peeves but, to wrap up, when I read stories that have one or more of what is listed, most of the time the back arrow cannot be clicked fast enough. These stories are the ones I typically do not like to read personally and therefore I typically will not review.
Exercising Etiquette: Be polite and well-mannered, please, if you desire an intelligent, mature reply back. Also, please consider reading my full response before replying back just in case I'd already answered your question. Common sense and decency still exist in the world, so it escapes me why some individuals do not comprehend or choose to turn them off when intending to interact civilly with someone. It's already bad enough that I see this happening in some reviews for well-to-do fics. As much as I'm aware of the festering pits of the Internet and the psychology of why people act this way, I am forced to put this out as a public service: if you PM or review authors with a request or questions, please be courteous. We are strangers. Don't behave like a self-entitled princess/prince. Don't demand something and expect us to follow through with it if we haven't agreed. I cannot believe I have to write this out for some people. Honestly I try to keep my irritation in check and patiently, politely reply back to any incessantly rude PMs in hopes that they either change their tune or that the conversation could be done with soon. But it comes to the point when they bypass my attempts to end our conversations with an air of finality enough that I become irritated. As a fair warning, some authors aren't as indulgent as I am. Note that we are voluntarily helping you despite the workloads we have in our own personal busy lifestyle which I'm sure reflects your own. Out of the kindness of our hearts, we put effort into our responses. You have to understand we are not under contractual obligation to provide someone we do not know with more help or to listen to your demand when we feel personally offended by the individual behind it. No one would feel inclined to do more for you when they feel like their previous efforts were rebuffed, ignored, and/or unappreciated.
Melodramatic Angst: Have there been the rare good stories that, despite having pointless melodrama angst, that I've enjoyed? Yes, grudgingly so. But I find little appeal reading about a hurt protagonist (female or male) who has been beaten, raped, insulted, kicked when they are down, manipulated, betrayed by loved ones, bullied, targeted by everyone, lusted after, stalked, AND so forth. Please note the conjunction. It is of my opinion that having the protagonist go through all the nine circles of hell like a checklist for the sake of evoking reader sympathy is such a needlessly cruel and clichéd tool for authors to constantly rely on, especially if the victim does not come out stronger from it. It also irks me when I read a part of the story where the protagonist is being diagnosed and all of a sudden they are announced to have broken bones, cracked ribs, signs of malnutrition, a history of abuse, a concussion, blood clots, bruises and so forth. Yes, I agree with your healer/doctor/nurse/mediwitch that it is miraculous they are even alive. And how disbelieving they are no one has noticed it. The obvious has been stated.
OCs: It's a double-edged sword. We are reading your story for sake of a certain cast of characters in a certain fandom or fandoms, so when the protagonist shares equal screen-time with an OC I don't care about, I am immediately taken out of the story. I can trudge through it if your story is worth being exposed to the horror that is your Mary-Sue or Gary-Sue character, but I can only swallow so much. I can usually tell they are not going to be great OCs if the story provides me an actual bio of their character, detailing how they'd look and behave, then finding discrepancies from their appearance to the way they are written to act or speak. If they are irrelevant to the plot's progression―literally being a waste of dialogue and unnecessary focus―if I am still interested in the story I skip their scenes as best as I can. Also, I have to close my eyes in irritation when the OC has a foreign name that does not suit the story environment or atmosphere. Give me a reasonable backstory, please. Otherwise I doubt a Gary or Mary would be born in Japan. I doubt a Yuuki or Kaori would be born in the US if their ancestry weren't of Asian origin or inspired by oriental influence. Give a reasonable backstory of how your OC knows the language or characters. Culturally-speaking, if a foreigner is in a different country for a first time, it's more realistic if they are regarded with curious suspicion than with idealized, widespread acceptance and adoration. If they're in a different time, there will be inconsistencies in understanding each other's slang and terminologies. Also, there are more personalities than a pretty boy/woman who shouts a lot or acts comedically in the presence of a romantic lead in a non-humor fic, smacks an annoying male character upside the head and can beat the tar out of someone without consequences like in an anime, is that cheeky guy/girl who the main character is irritated by but still keeps around for some reason, or behaves the way they are because of an angsty, melodramatic past that I really couldn't care about. Not everyone is going to like him/her. Not everyone is going to bully him/her. Also, if you're going down the tough-guy route or a girl who needs to be broken out of her emotionless shell, make it original by realistically giving them flaws than this perfect, assholely tsundere with cold, dead eyes or a smirk, coughing up blood over their drool-worthy body and expensive finery that you've dedicated a fair amount of paragraphs to describing. Develop them as a character, who learns to stand up for themselves, discovers themselves or the meaning of something, or learns to express emotion or form connections. Anything! I just...argh.
Out of Character (OOC) and Bashings: I tolerate many creative liberties with a canonical personality, but it is a strike against the author when the character's written in an extreme way that reminds me that they don't act like that in the original material in a non-OOC fic. I like reading a smarter, more powerful character. I like their leap in maturity. I understand the deaging. I agree with your attempt to humanize the character or make them somehow relateable. I could grow to like a unique spin on a character. But when they become as irritatingly weak as a kitten (becoming dramatically dependent) or stereotypically nasty (to the point that I conjure up an image of a villain twirling his handlebar mustache and cackling), I literally have to face-palm.
Romance Cliches: ...I love romances. Truly, I do. But it personally annoys me when it's sex-on-first-sight in non-PWP labeled fics and/or the leads somehow magically fall in love with no reason other than "holy-BBQ-they're-hot! Must have sex with them!" Rushing is only well-managed by a few authors. A shallow attraction, like Disney's the Little Mermaid where Ariel falls in love with Prince Eric and silently endured all these hardships solely because he was handsome, is generally not a good basis for a relationship or a story. I'd always thought that movie was a bit dumb. And hollow. I'd like to personally see the author develop the relationship more meaningfully in a chaptered storyline if they're going the realistic, long route. I'd love it even more if there was a credible reason why so-and-so are attracted to each other if an author is basing it off of reality. I need a reason, even if it's something as quick as s/he resembles someone they know, it's a Soulmate!AU premise, or it's their first time seeing someone so exotic and beautiful. Also, I understand dubcon and rape is fetishized on the Internet but...if an author is intending to keep the characters strictly canon, I am thrown for a loop when suddenly they are written to resort to this drastic extreme. It's probably because this is such a serious issue in reality that sometimes I find these fanfics a bit on the distasteful side if they don't have a satisfying conclusion and it's just...merely...there. Like a piece of dung. That isn't addressed and doesn't even need to be written.
Shortening Someone's Name/Cutesy Petnames/Nicknames: I prefer reading someone's first name or surname in a written piece of work instead of a petname unless it is justified by the author's plot. I also have a bone to pick with female endearments that essentially replace the character's names. The original author slaved away picking the perfect names for their creations, so I find it offensive if I don't somehow honor that in my stories unless it is canonically fitting that nicknames spring up due to a situation or a certain character. For example, Nymphadora Tonks is just referred to as "Tonks" due to her canonical distaste for her mother's naming ability, and this is a perfectly good reason that I can live with. Butchering "Draco," a perfectly beautiful name, into the cutesy "Drake" or "Dray" isn't. I simply have a hard time swallowing that characters such as Severus Snape will accept being called "Sev," Sesshomaru being called "Sess" or "Sessho" or "Sho" or "Maru," Sirius Black as "Siri," or Inuyasha being called "Yash." I understand they're supposed to be affectionate endearments to show the depth of a relationship, yet it is incredibly off-putting and demeaning to the character. I make an effort to bypass it in my reading material if an "icky" petname is used sparingly, but a red flag goes off in my head when it essentially becomes the character's go-to address.
Unnecessary Feminization of a Male Character: This is slightly controversial, in my opinion. Note, I'm not talking about genderbending. I identify with female authors who cannot help making one or more of their characters feminine because inherently it's hard to disassociate themselves from it. I also understand the characters we are writing are ultimately wish-fulfillment characters. But when I read a story where a character has become "emasculated" and in fact could be a blushing original female character but with a dick, I start losing interest. Characters who are idealized as androgynous beauties are also rarely written well. I need to be eased into either of these characterizations in a non-PWP work-in-progress. Give me a reason why they're suddenly crossdressing. Why is he so willing to be on the "bottom"/ submissive/ the "uke" if it's his first time? How did he develop a crush on this person? If it's his first time wearing a flowing feminine garment and makeup, give me his thoughts on it other than "ohmigod, he looks just like a girl with blushing cheeks, lush petal pink lips, a pert ass, and soulfully big eyes that one could drown in!" What has made him or her choose this lifestyle? How has his environment affected him? Yes, I'd like to see people accept him for who he or she is, but I still need justification in order to suspend my disbelief. If not, it's like I'm reading a shameless self-insert fanfiction but with the character's name (and/or looks) replacing the author's. It's rarely well-done. The main gripe I have with it is that it's rarely established for reasons of plot and characterization, and it unfortunately makes me think they're weak and pitifully pathetic if they aren't written to learn to stand up for themselves or learn to ignore any vilifying. Not every guy is going to fall in love with this character, when he becomes a girl or like one. Allow the people around him to be straight, homosexual, pansexual, demisexual, asexual, aromantic, etc. Otherwise it starts to come off as a little misogynistic or even sexist. Also...really, is he going to automatically look attractive or convincingly girly the instant he puts on a feminine garment? Is he going to be like, yes, give me that kimono, give me those kohl-lined eyes, and give me that girly haircut? Is he really going to blush all the time? Where is his pride and masculinity? I don't care if he wants to be a girl and has gone through surgery. It's just...you're writing about a guy. Whom canonically acts in the opposite of what you're portraying and in real life would retain an ounce of masculinity due to cultural upbringings and the gender expectations we as a society foist on our people. Address it, even in a sentence or two, if you're writing a serious, realistic piece. Even weak characters have their strengths. Girls have their strengths. Homosexuals have their strengths. Effeminate characters have their strengths. Sure, you can make him as effeminate and girly as you want, but unless they're transsexual or transgender (even that's a stretch), discovering themselves, rebelling against the system, or whatever is relevant to plot and character development, I think you're missing the point of a slash story when your homosexual romance starts leaning towards heterosexual love.
WHEN I REVIEW NOWADAYS:
Typically it's for stories whose number of reviews aren't as high as I expect them to be or because there are constructive criticisms that the current readers avoid expressing aloud to be kind or, rarely, are not mature enough to detect. For the former, the reason why I do so is because I personally only read stories based on the number of reviews. Generally it's just easier for me to detect unique and well-written stories using this method. I assume many readers use the same sorting service as I do on FF.net. Therefore I am stunned when an amazing story or one with a lot of potential isn't as popular as I'd expect it to be.
For the latter reason, I skip those not my cup of tea and the badly-written ones instead. For stories that are in deep need of a constructive crit, I feel responsible to voice them only to authors who express their willingness for honest feedback and/or willingness to improve. It is disbelieving to me when, despite this earnest request, readers ignore the frequent-enough-that-they-no-longer-can-be-ignored shortcomings and instead praise the author nonstop, giving them the wrong impression. It bothers me when I see elementary mistakes no one or very few bring to the author's attention. I'd love for the author to grow and mature as a writer, because it makes the reading material that much more enjoyable. To be fair, I try to soften the blow with my sincere appreciation of what I've enjoyed thus far. I am patient enough to be willing to give a story a try first, just in case the writing does improve or I am able to bear it, before tearing it down constructively. I understand criticisms are harsh, but the crits in my design school have taught me they are necessary if they are worded appropriately and they are balanced with what we love about their project. For me my writing has developed to what it is now because of both the encouragements and the appropriately worded constructive crits. When I get them now and I agree, I implement them to make the reading more enjoyable to my readers. This makes me have more pride in my work when it is well-written enough to appeal to a lot of people. Therefore I feel obligated to do the same for others because it's made such a huge impact on me.
However more often than not, out of habit I just favorite the ones that I've enjoyed and still stick with me, despite my short-term memory, to this day. But there are the rare few that are impactful enough that I find it within myself to express my sincere appreciation for.
FANART FOR MY STORIES! :)
Moonlight Sonata- by the lovely SoushiKaito:
(It's really quite beautiful, and I'm honored that she was inspired by an oneshot from my earlier writings. The linework is crisp, and I like the blending of colors and the contrasting BG!)
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