Mar 17 2009

Would you like to have an extra review forum?

Published by at 6:09 am under Review Forums

Would it be helpful if we offered authors the ability to take more than one review forum so that they could pursue more than one story? If we started offering multiple review forums, would anyone be interested?

36 responses so far

36 Responses to “Would you like to have an extra review forum?”

  1. Ragged Boyon 17 Mar 2009 at 7:51 am

    I don’t think two forums are necessary, definitely not 2+ forums. But maybe someone else will. I’m not interested.

  2. B. Macon 17 Mar 2009 at 8:56 am

    Ok, thanks for your input.

  3. Holliequon 17 Mar 2009 at 9:07 am

    I think it’s a good idea, but I’m not sure if anyone is working on two different stories enough for it to be worth it (um, I mean, I don’t think anybody is putting that much effort into two stories to make separate review forums worth it).

  4. B. Macon 17 Mar 2009 at 9:17 am

    Yeah, I definitely wouldn’t be giving out many, many forums. I’d really like to encourage people to stick to as few stories as possible, so that they actually finish one and get it published.

  5. Dr Eagle Gon 17 Mar 2009 at 9:20 am

    I know this is a little off topic, but is there a general forum where people can post different discussions?

  6. B. Macon 17 Mar 2009 at 9:21 am

    Hmm, like discussions of what?

  7. Dr Eagle Gon 17 Mar 2009 at 9:30 am

    Just general discussions on writing. For example, I could start a topic with the question ‘Does everyone write to a schedule, or only when they feel inspired?’ People could reply just as they do here.

  8. B. Macon 17 Mar 2009 at 9:40 am

    That sounds fruitful. I’ve started an Open Writing Forum here. Thanks for your suggestion.

  9. Dr Eagle Gon 17 Mar 2009 at 9:59 am

    I have another suggestion if you don’t mind. In the current setup, it seems as if the open writing forum can only host one discussion at a time, so if three people wanted to speak about three different topics, the replies might get a little confusing to read as they’d all be under one another.

    Is there any way of users creating separate ‘threads’ so that people could reply to whichever specific topic they wanted?

    Hope you don’t mind me contributing my thoughts!

  10. Tomon 17 Mar 2009 at 10:28 am

    What Dr Eagle is talking about is setting up a forum. From my experience of forums this is a very good idea, as forums allow people to discuss numerous topics at once in an organised way. The only problem is that maintaining a forum is complicated, and will add many layers of complexity to this site. But I think it’s worth it! 😀

  11. scribblaron 17 Mar 2009 at 12:57 pm

    You could always join a forum host website and link it to here. My money’s on Runboard, since I spend a lot of my online time over there – it’s free, easy and I like it.

    Have a few of your regs become forum mods, and that way someone will always be there to look out for it.

    You could have a writing advice section, a discuss Agent Orange webcomics section, a discuss other comic sections, and a discuss other media section. Oh, and a private forum for members only to post work excerpts.

    Just an idea…

  12. Tomon 17 Mar 2009 at 1:09 pm

    I’d recommend either Invisionfree or Zetaboards, since I’ve used both and have not been dissapointed. (both totally free by the way)

  13. Davidon 17 Mar 2009 at 1:19 pm

    i woudnt mind a sepret form one for my comic and one for my other story that im planing and ye a proper form would be ideal

  14. Ragged Boyon 17 Mar 2009 at 1:28 pm

    That makes sense. If you’re one of those people that are afraid of getting their story stolen. B. Mac, I remember you being able to make articles with passwords, you could do that for Davey.

  15. Davidon 17 Mar 2009 at 1:32 pm

    You know, guys, I could set up a writing forum on excoboard. They run the Teen Titans site.

  16. Ragged Boyon 17 Mar 2009 at 1:38 pm

    Upon thinking about it, I think it is a good idea if a person is allowed 2+ forums. I don’t need one now, or at least I won’t until I’m finished with issue #1 of Showtime.

    That way I’ll have a forum for the Showtime continuation and whatever comic I work on next (probably Sketch). That way people won’t get confused if I post a scene from one and a scene from another.

  17. B. Macon 17 Mar 2009 at 1:58 pm

    I’ve been looking into whether it would be feasible to host a forum elsewhere. I’m not really confident it will work smoothly. Anyway, you can test it out here. Let me know what you think.

  18. B. Macon 17 Mar 2009 at 2:05 pm

    Yes, I can set up password-blocks. I wouldn’t recommend it unless you’re close to getting published though. (If you’re not close to getting published, your story isn’t worth anything to a thief because he can’t really do anything with it).

  19. Davidon 17 Mar 2009 at 2:05 pm

    I’ve done a forum here. Have a look.

  20. Dforceon 17 Mar 2009 at 2:52 pm


    As for the multiple review forums, here’s my two cents: I don’t think people would be too interested nor that they would benefit from offering two forums at first. People would likely just ask for them without any serious intent, or just ask for them for the heck of it (I’m tempted to… but I’ll restrain myself until I need them). Hmm… I say you watch the author and see how serious they seem, then offer them the forums they need to work on their stuff (I suggest giving their newer forum the title of the work they’re… working… on… hehe).

    Gah! Now, what is all this business with outside threads and passwords I hear? … I don’t want to be disagreeable on this, but all that just drives me away. I came here initially because of the freedom (no passwords or registrations and the friendly inclusivity of the site; in that the site has a select topic, but after reading posts you’d realise all one has to do is ask) and fluidity (things could be moved if necessary from this article to the next by The Man himself)…

    … I suppose this turtle will try to keep up and see what happens…

  21. B. Macon 17 Mar 2009 at 4:20 pm

    I agree that going elsewhere for an off-site forum is a bit of a hassle. If I could figure out how to “thread” comments on this website (so that you could respond to a comment and have it appear right below the comment you’re responding to), I think that would be as good as a separate forum without any of the registration hassles.

    As for the passwords… passwords are something I’d be willing to do if an author was really concerned about offering unlimited access to his work. I don’t think that those fears are typically justified, but it’s an option that is easy for me to implement for the few authors that want it. So if you specifically ask for password protections, I can add those.

    I’ll work on getting threaded comments up.

    As for the issue of multiple review forums, I think it’ll become more useful as people start completing one project and move on to the next. Otherwise authors will probably clear out their forum so that the forum doesn’t get cluttered with mostly irrelevant material. That old material is still useful for potential writers trying to figure out which elements editors focus on.

  22. Scribblaron 18 Mar 2009 at 7:22 am

    Would it really drive you away? If this site remained exactly the same but had a button at the top for review forums and if you clicked it it took you to a site of review forums? At the end of the day, you don’t have to click it…

    This is one I go to sometimes…

    I quite like runboard, but hey – it’s not my call. It’s not my site.

  23. B. Macon 18 Mar 2009 at 7:37 am

    My main concerns with moving off-site are…

    1. It will complicate the navigation process by forcing readers to make many clicks to get where they’re going. Internet users typically have a very low attention span. If your site design asks viewers to click more than twice to get somewhere, you’ll lose a lot of them. Everything on SN is accessible within 2 clicks. For example, if you click the review forum page, then it brings up a list of review forums. Then you click the author’s name and you’re good to go. To get to one of our writing articles, first you click on the appropriate index and then click on the article title. In contrast, let’s say we go to an off-site forum. Click #1 is to the homepage of the forum, like this. Click #2 takes the viewer to the thread for review forums, like this. Finally, we’d have a list of authors and the reader would have to click again. So that’s at least 3 clicks, but probably more when you consider that a forum can usually only list 20 threads on each page. We have 15 forums and add 2-3 a week. (New here? If you’d like to get a review forum, please leave a comment and I’ll set it up right away).

    2. It will probably force readers to register. I find that to be an unnecessary hurdle for readers. In contrast, on Superhero Nation it’s refreshingly easy to comment.

    3. There may be ads involved. Even though they will probably be small text ads from Google, I’d like to avoid them. Websites with ads typically feel seedy.

    4. Taking review forums off-site may adversely affect our ability to get published. When we pitch to publishers, one of our selling points will be precisely how many super-dedicated viewers we have. For example, “we have 5000 viewers that have visited our site 100 or more times” or “10,000 readers have spent more than 20 minutes on our website” or whatever. If we move review forums off-site, Google Analytics will probably lose track of their viewers. Most forums include a simple hit-count, of course, but that’s not as useful because it doesn’t say much about viewer dedication. I’d feel much more confident if I had data targeted to the readers that are most likely to buy a book from us, the readers that come back again and again. Going off-site will make it harder to gather that data. Obviously, that’s more of a concern on our end than the reader’s end, but it’s better for readers if we get paid by a publisher than an ad firm. Ads are far more intrusive than Analytics!

  24. Ragged Boyon 18 Mar 2009 at 8:26 am

    Quoting Dforce: “I suppose this turtle will try to keep up and see what happens.”

    I’m also getting lost and confused on the whole extra off-site forum idea. I don’t think it’s necessary. B. Mac recently opened up an Open Writing Forum, I think that will suffice. Personally, the extra forum just seems superfluous.

    A personal extra forum may be good if you’re working that hard, but that’s about as far as it goes. Passwords are unnecessary.I agree on another of Dforce’s comments. I too love this site because it is open and inviting. I don’t have to go through some registration process, I just put in my name and email, then talk. [EDITOR: The email isn’t actually required.]

    SN has been growing rapidly these last few months. A wave of new people, new articles, and way more productivity, and this is good. But I think it’s best to stay away from extremities to keep the site as user-friendly as possible. Wouldn’t you want your country to be user-friendly?

  25. Dr Eagle Gon 18 Mar 2009 at 9:57 am

    Hey RB, the extra forum will make it easier to start multiple discussions, whereas the current forum might get a little messy if more than one topic is being discussed.

  26. B. Macon 18 Mar 2009 at 10:59 am

    For the reasons above, I am not excited about doing a forum off-site. I’m looking into whether it would be feasible to do real forums on-site (where guests can start their own threads, etc). Those seem to have worked pretty well on sites like Comicvine. Unfortunately, my technical advisor is skeptical that it would work here.

    In the mean-time, though, we do have that off-site forum. If any threads really get going, I’d be happy to post here.

  27. Marissaon 18 Mar 2009 at 11:37 am

    Eek, you really did make it?!

    -scrambles over to the forums too-

    I’m horribly OCD, gotta always know what’s going on… Thanks for spreading my workload, guys. ;D

    I’m kidding. Well, about the mock anger/sarcasm. Not the OCD.

  28. scribblaron 18 Mar 2009 at 11:49 am

    From what I’ve hear some publishers consider posting on the net a form of publishing… so you need a password and a private forum to post your work if you are serious about seeking publication.

  29. B. Macon 18 Mar 2009 at 12:19 pm

    I would recommend setting up password protection right before you’re ready to submit.

    Also, from what I’ve heard, publishers can republish works they’re interested in. For example, particularly successful self-published novels can be republished through a professional publisher. (Eragon, for example). SN retains no rights on your works and will not otherwise try to interfere with you publishing professionally. (Ahem, getting you published professionally is the point of this website).

    I suspect that publishers would be more alarmed if there were copies of your work bouncing around the internet.

    Also, as far as password-protection, we’d offer two different levels of intrusiveness:
    1) A real password. Ideally this word would be specific to your story, so it’d be fairly easy for a dedicated reader to remember it. The author would control access to the password, and I would only distribute it as specifically authorized by the author. This is relatively secure but not very reader-friendly.
    2) A site-wide password, ‘superheronation’. This is our default password. It’s deliberately easy to guess and remember. The only purpose to add this alleged password is to meet a technical requirement so that posting your work for review doesn’t count as publishing.

  30. Avi Arunon 23 Mar 2009 at 8:00 am

    @ B. Mac

    I would like a second review forum. If I had two stories to work on, I could hop from one to the other when I’m too tired of writing one. This will also keep me dedicated to writing because if I had only one story to write, I’d probably try to relax by watching tv or playing football, which will definitely deviate me from my writing goal. Also, I’m frequently affected by Writer’s Block. So, If I had two stories to work on, I can switch to story 2 when I’m bored with story 1 or vice versa, thereby avoiding Writer’s Block without distracting myself. Thank you in advance.

    Also, is there a email address to which I can send some details about this second forum and a password for it? It’s confusing to post it here.

  31. B. Macon 23 Mar 2009 at 11:31 am

    Ok, I have it here.

    As for the password, you can send that to superheronation-at-gmail-dot-com. However, we only check that e-mail about once a day, so the turnaround will not be extremely fast.

  32. Avi Arunon 23 Mar 2009 at 10:14 pm

    Okay then! Let me comment here instead.

    I want my second review forum to be on the sidebar instead of the first because I got a lot of concept gathered for the second one, so I will mainly be working on it.

    As I will be working on a more lighthearted story in the second review forum, I am bringing Clue and other characters from the first story to the second. I’ll be giving more serious names to the characters of the first story. There might be some changes to be made to the first story, but I’ll be talking about that in a later post.

    For the password thing, it’s mainly intended to avoid anyone not part of this site to view my story. It can be known to anyone here in Superhero Nation. You can set any password you like and inform me.

  33. B. Macon 23 Mar 2009 at 10:22 pm

    Ok. The password is the name of your protagonist.

  34. Avi Arunon 23 Mar 2009 at 10:26 pm

    yes, I know the password now. Maybe you could give a hint or something so other regular posters at Superhero Nation could also access the page.

  35. Wingson 24 Mar 2009 at 1:43 pm

    Let’s see…

    I’d probably use a second review forum. For instance, say 5 years from now How to Save the World is published and doing very well. Since I’m planning a sequel, I’d want a second forum for it to keep everyone except my helpers from finding out about it. (After all, I’d credit you guys in the acknowledgments and dedication!)

    – Wings Ze GREAT!!

  36. The ReTARDISed Whovianon 25 Mar 2009 at 4:30 am

    I think I’d do the same thing as Wings. After publishing, I’d want my current review forum to go under password protection so I could work on my others without any spoilers. Only after publishing the third would I unlock it (and link it to my official site) so readers can see the process. It goes without saying that everyone who has helped will get a dedication and be acknowledged.

    “I’d like to thank all my personal superheroes (long list of everyone who has helped) for being so supportive, kind and well… super.”

    Perhaps I’d want it locked after submitting my manuscript to a publisher, so there aren’t details of it floating around the internet. I expect Superhero Nation to be published before I’m even editing my manuscript, and that would mean more visitors to the site and more regular readers. The less of my story that is publicly available, the better.

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