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The good, the bad, and the wonderful - Words in the Heroes' Tongue
I have a variable-sword. I urge calm.
The good, the bad, and the wonderful
I received some extremely venomous feedback recently. I posted this drabble at 'Twisting the Hellmouth' and someone reviewed it thus:
I have to say this is story was complete dribble, and resembles the work of a 5 year old with too much time on their hands. In the words of Jay Pinkerton, reading this is quite literally "like going to the bathroom after a six-burrito lunch, and the toilet paper is YOUR EYES."

Surely that level of vitriolic condemnation is entirely inappropriate for a drabble? Even were it the worst drabble ever written (and I had quite a few favourable comments and so it can't have been that bad, can it?) how bad can 100 words be?

The TtH account is newly created and this is the only review it has posted. Strange. I wondered if it might be a sock puppet specifically for the purposes of a personal attack on me, but the TtH mods say that no other users from that IP address have ever posted there. And I'm not aware of having any Internet enemies.

Anyway, I'm not going to let it upset me. I'll press on with 'Dojo Hard', which is within sight of the end after my burst of 3 chapters in 4 days, and hopefully I'll get it finished this week.

And on to a more pleasant Sock Puppet. The incredible shadowscast recently posted a story by that name at fall_for_sx and it is utterly wonderful. Even if (like me) you're not a Slash reader this is well worth reading. Simply superb. Sock Puppet. Praise her with great praise.

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Current Music: Neil Young, "Rocking in the Free World"

78 comments or speak 2 me
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spikeshunny From: spikeshunny Date: November 23rd, 2006 05:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
I don't understand why people are so venemous (ok i spelt that wrong)

Constructive critsicsm is a word that doesn't belong in most people's vocalbulary.

To be honest i'm quite disgusted.

I think your writing is fabulous, bollocks to the cynics out there.
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 08:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thank you hun.
agilebrit From: agilebrit Date: November 23rd, 2006 06:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
They probably just didn't get the joke. May space penguins throw rotten eggs at their head until they grow some brains. Or literary references.

I think the drabble is FABULOUS. *hugs*
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 08:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
mygothangel From: mygothangel Date: November 23rd, 2006 06:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
there are many people who don't have a life, but a black heart and vicious mouth
I know intimately how hurtful it is to be attacked in that manner
I admire your stand in that matter
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 08:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thank you!
rahirah From: rahirah Date: November 23rd, 2006 06:39 pm (UTC) (Link)
I would bet that the reviewer doesn't get the joke.
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 08:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
I have a suspicion that there might be more to it than that. But yes, he (I'd bet on it being a he) probably doesn't get the joke.
zanthinegirl From: zanthinegirl Date: November 23rd, 2006 06:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
Bizarre. I mean, your drabbles are always bad in the sense of "horrible puns"; this one was far from the worst! I can't imagine why someone would hate you, but maybe it's someone who is just posting from another IP address to foil the mods? A cyber cafe, say or work?

Either way weird! Sorry to hear about it!
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 08:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
I can't really imagine why anyone would go to so much trouble - but then I don't understand why a mere drabble could provoke such scathing criticism either.

Thank you.
elisi From: elisi Date: November 23rd, 2006 06:41 pm (UTC) (Link)
Some people are obviously too dim to get something as complicated as 'humour'. I say thank you for linking to your drabble, I hadn't read it and enjoyed it muchly! :) (Just the thought of Xena/Poirot is mindbogglingly wonderful - how did they meet? Was it only one night of passion or did they have a secret relationship? The possibilities are fascinating and hilarious!)
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 08:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
I have had ideas about writing that Poirot/Xena crossover - 'Murder at the Acropolis' - but there are always other projects that I'm more enthusiastic about.

It would, as well as Poirot/Xena, have been Captain Hastings/Gabrielle and Joxer/Ariadne Oliver.

Or perhaps not.
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Expand
bogwitch From: bogwitch Date: November 23rd, 2006 06:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think they're looking for trouble myself.

I will say something though. Your writing can be very difficult to judge (I had to judge Savage Beauty for the RDAs), because most of the time it's all about the joke and if you don't get it, you're stuffed - fortunately, most of the time, I do!

I know you can write beutifully, Cloak of Mist is a fabulous example of that, but sometimes serving the jokes can make the prose seem weaker than it really is, because that's often the point. It makes your work tricky to compare.
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 09:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
I know that comparing comedy and non-comedy can be like comparing apples to oranges; if my comic pieces are in for awards I do prefer it if they are in a category specifically for comedy.

I know that I can do non-comedy too; I'm very proud of 'Cloak of Mist' and 'Days of No Trust', and 'Lonely on the Mountain' has had some major awards successes.

But I like writing comedy, and after all I'm writing primarily for my own enjoyment.

I agree that the reviewer may well be looking for trouble.
jgracio From: jgracio Date: November 23rd, 2006 06:56 pm (UTC) (Link)
Isn't apathy the worst thing a piece of art can provoke? And doesn't the best stuff have almost as many people that hate it as it does people that love it?

Don't sweat it, your stuff rocks.
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 09:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'll take apathy over being burned at the stake, having my head cut off by a religious fanatic, etc., any day.

And how can anyone hate a drabble that much? It's not exactly Guernica or Stranger in a Strange Land, after all. Just 100 words, amusing at best, annoying for a few seconds only at worst.

Thank you!

gillo From: gillo Date: November 23rd, 2006 07:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
In the words of Jay Pinkerton, reading this is quite literally "like going to the bathroom

Wow. THAT's sophisticated and adult.

Oh, wait, no it isn't. It's stupid and immature and wildly inaccurate at that. Ignore it. Please.

speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 09:08 pm (UTC) (Link)
I've every intention of ignoring it. It's certainly not going to affect my writing or posting. But it does puzzle me more than somewhat.
audela From: audela Date: November 23rd, 2006 07:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'd managed to miss that drabble. Truly groan worthy.

I had to look up Jay Pinkerton as I had no idea who he was. My guess is that the reviewer was trying to be funny. Just as I might say "God, Speaker, that was truly HORRIBLE!" and you'd laugh because you know what I mean (and I do--mean it), I think that's what the reviewer was trying to do. The review seems to me to be much too complex and layered to be an actual insult.

I think that explanation is as likely as that someone for incomprehensible reasons attacked a DRABBLE viciously (talk about using a blunderbuss to kill a gnat). And if you take my explanation, then the review is just funny, though inept. And a compliment, of sorts.

speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 08:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
There is a 1-10 rating system at Twisting the Hellmouth with the default being "Not rated". This reviewer rated it 1 out of 10. It really was an insult.
From: beer_good_foamy Date: November 23rd, 2006 08:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
I will never understand what makes some people write reviews like that. But I was even more amused by the review you got complaining that the drabble was short. Just keep in mind the old adage: "If they're shooting at you, you must be doing something right."

(The drabble was excellent, BTW. Excellent in an "Oh dear lord" way.)
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 09:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
Drabble short, tree pretty.
pfeifferpack From: pfeifferpack Date: November 23rd, 2006 08:37 pm (UTC) (Link)
Clearly the "reviewer" either:
a. Has no sense of humor (or doesn't get yours)
b. Doesn't know Agatha Christie and/or Xena
c. Can't appreciate the thought of Xander being the spawn of such!

Personally it just shows a lacking on their part IMHO. I loved the drabble and am finding it far too easy to picture that as Xander's parentage (so much explained!). I often wonder what odd planet some people hale from and why they feel the need to be as offensive as humanly possible. A simple, "I don't get it, didn't like it." would have sufficed. The whole bathroom visual was crude and unnecessary (and I think the real reason for the reply at all.....someone had the mistaken idea that their "put down" was a work of wit and looked for a place to use it. This says much about their humor level in comparison to the droll drabble they chose as a target.)

In short.....the reviewer was clearly an idiot and you are still the king of intelligent and funny!

thanks for the well wishes for our holiday...hope your weekend leads to lots of things to be thankful for.
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 09:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
If I go into 'conspiracy theory' mode the only suspect that I can think of who would launch a personal attack on me is a Super!Xander fan type. It's a type of fan that I don't understand anyway - I mean, the whole point of Xander on the show was that he didn't have superpowers, and I think that ordinary guy Xander is much more interesting to explore (as I do in "Lonely on the Mountain") than any non-canon Super!Xander - but there quite a few of them out there and they tend (as Liz Marcs has found out) to be quite rabid. (Wow, that was a long sentence!)

My suspicion is that it was one of that breed who was bitterly disappointed that the Xander in my drabble was NOT the son of Hercules.

Re the bathroom imagery being 'witty' and the reviewer looking for a place to use it - as it was a quote from someone else, and they admitted as much, using it isn't exactly staking a claim to a reputation for wit anyway.

Although it might put them halfway there.

Thank you!
alwaysjbj From: alwaysjbj Date: November 23rd, 2006 08:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
I agree with you, there was definitely a greater level of emotion in the response than a drabble could possibly evoke--especially a drabble that was so obviously tongue in cheek.

I'm inclined to go with a troll and you were unfortunate enough to be their target. I certainly wouldn't take it personally or as a reflection on the drabble. Which, BTW, made me both groan and smile, which I am pretty sure was your aim. LOL
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 09:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm wondering if it might have been a fan of Super!Xander stories who was bitterly disappointed that the Xander in my drabble was not really the son of Hercules.

And yes, to raise a groan and a smile was exactly what I was aiming at.
adriana_is From: adriana_is Date: November 23rd, 2006 09:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
WTF??? What kind of feedback is that? How incredibly fucking rude of this person! I am really appalled. I've heard of negative feedback but this is just plain crazy-evil.

what a wanker!
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 09:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
julia_here From: julia_here Date: November 23rd, 2006 09:56 pm (UTC) (Link)
(Waiting for the ibuprofen to kick in after a morning of strenuous chopping and slicing and mixing, et'c)

Someone up there said something to the effect that Mr. Hostile Anonymous had found that disgusting quote and was looking for the first opportunity to use it, and I'll go along with that. It was entirely inappropriate for the subject, even given a bad reaction; one should, really, keep ones insults proportionate to the matter.

Must vote "yea" for your recommendation of "Sockpuppet;" my recommendation is in the Slash thread at the S'cubie board as should be my usual practice.

Julia, at least, with my terrible deficiency in answering comments of late, I'm at least not guilty of such a totally outsized and dumb-headed overreaction
speakr2customrs From: speakr2customrs Date: November 23rd, 2006 09:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
I saw your rec for "Sockpuppet" at the S'cubie board - when I went there to rec it myself and found that you had been 4 minutes ahead of me!
78 comments or speak 2 me
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