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Advice/Help Have you ever written a post that doesn't feel up to par?

summermoon

( 𝘸𝘩𝘪𝘵𝘦 𝘧𝘭𝘰𝘸𝘦𝘳. )
What the title says. For more context, I'm asking about posts where they still don't feel good enough even after you've edited them several times.

What part of the post made you feel this way (for example: pacing, structure, dialogue, etc.)? And what did you do when you realized that the post wasn't optimal? Did you try to make it better, or did you send it anyways?

Asking because I'm going through this right now ;; I've been editing a post for a week or so now because it's not turning out as well as I'd like it. I keep comparing it to my previous reply, which was one of the better posts I've ever written, and it's really throwing me off my groove OTL

Feel free to ask for clarification. Any comments/advice would be appreciated!
 

LazyDaze

Senior Member
Um I have written posts too short, lacking in detail or any real substance. I’m usually pretty decent with posts however burnout is a thing if u don’t give yourself a mulligan every now and then. I sent mine anyway because I really wanted to continue the RP but I let the gm know like yeah....this one isn’t up to par. Yet I can do that because I don’t make a habit out of this and also you’re probably being your own worse critic. 😂
 

Syntra

Baba Yaga
If you've been editing it for that long, chances are the post is fine and you're just suffering from authorial blindness. If I were you, I'd send it!

And yeah, there have been times when I wrote a post that felt off to me. I tried my hardest to write something I could be proud of, and yet it still didn't feel good enough. I can't pinpoint what bothered me about these posts exactly, but something definitely did, and I felt terrible about it. You know what I did? I said 'to hell with it' and hit the send button anyway. In a roleplay, you don't need perfection-- you need to move forward, otherwise you'll kill the momentum. A slightly worse post is better than no post. Plus, if you've been stuck on one scene for such a long time, you've probably created this mental block for yourself and you need to get rid of it. Trust me, sending it will feel good :) Like lifting a weight off your chest. You're probably being too harsh on yourself anyway, and when you're done with it, you can focus on fresh scenes.
 

Crayons

Iconoclast
Oh yes, absolutely! I'm pretty sure everyone has.

So generally I would post what I have. Maybe also with an OOC note that I wasn't feeling this post and sorry (if I think it's significantly crapper than usual), but mostly not.

If the other players read it and are like "your character doesn't react to X" or "I don't understand this" or "Didn't you say you would put Y in your next post but then didn't?" or "I have nothing to react to" then it's time to rework it with the help of your partner/s.

If it's just not particularly well-worded, or something, then that's not really a problem for me. It's RP, it's a hobby, time is somewhat of the essence, and I personally would rather get a timely but imperfect post than one I have to wait a month for and the author thinks it's perfect cos chances are I'm not going to notice/care that you use the same adjective twice in consecutive sentences or you didn't quite get the description of the dancing dust motes exactly how you wanted it.

Of course I love it when something I write seems well-written to me, and I can read it back with a sense of pride, but that's not going to happen all the time, maybe not even 30% of the time. As long as it communicates what it needs to, it's fine. Send it.
 

Musician

🦚 Feathering Fables
Moderator
LOL literally my entire roleplay history... okay, that might be an exaggeration. But I don't think there is a roleplayer out there who could confidently claim that every single post they have written meets standards for others or themselves. We are our own worst critiques. Here is the thing, don't let the editing process take away from the fun of the roleplay. You're going to turn your hobbies into chores if you focus too much on little details like this. Improvement takes time because improvement is change. Change is never instant. The fact that you think that your previous posts are better than the one you're currently working on tells me that a part of you knows you're a better writer than you credit your current self for.
 

Onmyoji

HanGuang-Jun
Moderator
Supporter
Yes, absolutely. But I just send the post through even though I feel it's not quite right (unless it's something that completely destroys the flow of rp lol).
We're not robots, we can't mass produce same quality posts all the time.

I always check posts for consistency
- is it continuing what happened in previoust posts?
- is there enough material for my rp partner to reply off?
- are there not too many typos? (if a few slip in I might still catch upon posting and correct immediately)

If the pacing or structure slightly lags compared to what you're written before... well, sometimes it's a tradeoff. This post is not as good as previous one but next one might be better.
 

Daisie

Distressing the damsel
Moderator
Honestly, variation in quality when it comes to posts is normal. It's the same no matter what medium you're working in, art is the same way. I certainly have drawings that are worse than the ones that came before it.

I think it's a good thing. To an extent, it's the sub-par pieces that make the excellent ones so special.

I also think that pressuring yourself to be at 110% power with every single post isn't always the healthiest thing. That's going to burn you out extremely quickly. I mean, imagine if every meal you ate had to be prepared tediously and meticulously. Every single time, your cusine would have to be of the absolute highest quality possible. Putting financial costs aside, you'd never really be able to have the luxury of just... Sitting down and relaxing with a bowl of cereal. Or a tub of ice cream, or fast food. Sure, amazing food is... well, amazing, lol. But it's not something you're gonna want to laser-focus all your time on, especially when you're stuck on ingredients. Allow yourself to have the luxury of not spending 5 hours on a meal once in awhile.

In my opinion, you should try and come to terms with the fact that your posts aren't going to always be brilliant, winning hits. You can't be perfect all the time, and that's okay. C'est la vie.
 

BunnyDemon

Vileblood
All the time. But I tend to gravitate towards people who I feel are better writers than I am. The way I view it is if I'm not constantly comparing my writing to theirs in a negative way, then I'm not learning.

Wow. Actually typing that out sounds kinda toxic...
 

luvfull

pity this busy monster, manunkind.
i feel like my posts vary, and i feel so proud of myself when my replies turn out really well! when they don't? i freak out and i've even left a few roleplays due to how unhappy i was with my responses. not only were they extremely fast-paced, they lacked depth and detail and it seriously set me off aha. sometimes i look back at them and i'm like "why did i EVER send that" :c

if you have the ability to write out a character and create a world where it's different from your own, you should love it (or at least accept it) no matter what. not everything will be perfect, but it's something. we're always growing as humans or otherwise stated, we're not perfect! i think if you keep going, you're going to eventually be happy with what you create.
 

ashwynne

🌧 pluviophile 🌧 art: peritwinkle
Moderator
Supporter
Oh yeah, regularly. I definitely agree with what everyone else has been saying (sans Grey, who is flawless) in that this is perfectly normal.

In my specific case it pretty much always boils down to me not quite being able to capture the image in my head to the emotive/descriptive level that I want. It's incredibly frustrating when you have the vision in perfect clarity and know what you want to say, but can't quite nail down the how.

Sometimes it's because I need to get the stress of having a reply done on time off of my plate, so I'm not as present in the writing as I'd like to be. Sometimes it's because I'm having a bad day, am tired, and my brain struggles to find the words I need. Sometimes it just comes out half baked anyways, to the point where I have to laugh because what else can you do?

It used to bother me a lot more than it does now. These days I just shake myself off and know that I'll have better ones in the future. So long as the basic structure of 'reacting to what my partner(s) wrote' and 'providing something for them to react to' is included, I don't let it get to me. This is a hobby, it's meant to be fun... and I find that reminding myself of that fact tends to make it easier to take a deep breath, post it, and know that in all likelihood nooooobody cares except for me.
 

TPBx

Simpin for Witch Tea
> single paragraph post
> two sentences of action
> one sentence of dialogue
> still has typos

I've been there at least and recently in fact.
 

The One Eyed Bandit

bearer of the dreaded brain worms
For sure. I'll send them anyway, because I'm in the camp that a mediocre reply is better than no reply.

I think it's easy to get caught up with staying "up to par", though. Of course, you should always strive to keep your editing on point, but there doesn't need to be something major going on in every post. It's often best to play support, cede the spotlight to another player, on just indulge in a bit of narrative downtime to steady the pace of things. Rollercoasters have peaks and valleys for a reason. A drop is more thrilling with buildup, and the plummet will only stay thrilling for so long. Just imagine if your favourite book or whatever just jumped from major plot beat to major plot beat.

Something I like to keep in mind is that RP is also a collab, not a contest. It's fine to let someone else carry the scene for a while. What matters is that the machine is still running healthily, and it's fine to let yourself be a smaller cog in it to let it do so. You'll get to be the big gear eventually.
 

Sara Sidereal

Magical Space Princess
What the title says. For more context, I'm asking about posts where they still don't feel good enough even after you've edited them several times.

What part of the post made you feel this way (for example: pacing, structure, dialogue, etc.)? And what did you do when you realized that the post wasn't optimal? Did you try to make it better, or did you send it anyways?

Asking because I'm going through this right now ;; I've been editing a post for a week or so now because it's not turning out as well as I'd like it. I keep comparing it to my previous reply, which was one of the better posts I've ever written, and it's really throwing me off my groove OTL

Feel free to ask for clarification. Any comments/advice would be appreciated!
Every one of my posts is garbage and that's fine. Nothing will ever be perfect. I'd rather get it posted so other people can take their turn than spend a thousand hours on a paragraph that most people will skim for the parts relevant to their characters and forget thirty seconds later.
 

Vertighost v.2

Cringe Ass Nae Nae Baby (2002-2004)
It might sound silly, but occasionally I'll drop everything I'm doing to revise a post I've made on here with the irrational fear that I completely overlooked a large chunk of my partner's response in my post; roleplay and ooc. It could be the pacing, grammar, dialouge, it all makes me nervous to get accurate! I'll review, revise and fidget over it for a little while before I'm more confident in the new results and move on. There still might be a few mistakes present around by the time a partner responds, but I've learned to have faith that the general message is still getting across relatively well. Hell, I do it for my private works too. Reviewing and revising endlessly and adding new things I believe are appropriate for the moment.

I think writing is like a revolving door. You can come in and out satisfied of your work for that day and return the next with new inspiration to improve on it. It doesn't make what you created or fixed yesterday inferior or worse to today's, rather it just shows how you and your perspective has changed! Its okay to occasionally feel "not up to par" but just keep doing what you feel is right and it'll pass in time!
 

Kaihaku

Junior Member
I use to obsess over post quality to the point that I'd ghost the roleplay. I didn't intend to ghost... I just couldn't get the post right and kept on writing, rewriting, and rewriting. Then I became paralyzed by guilt because I had let the other participants down and I didn't want to return to activity with a crappy post. Negative feedback loop engaged.

My opinion as an older wiser Kai is that.... Engagement and activity are more important than the quality of an individual post. Most of the roleplayers I know would rather see a roleplay continue moving than have it stop for two weeks while one player refines that perfect post.
 

Crayons

Iconoclast
I use to obsess over post quality to the point that I'd ghost the roleplay. I didn't intend to ghost... I just couldn't get the post right and kept on writing, rewriting, and rewriting. Then I became paralyzed by guilt because I had let the other participants down and I didn't want to return to activity with a crappy post. Negative feedback loop engaged.

My opinion as an older wiser Kai is that.... Engagement and activity are more important than the quality of an individual post. Most of the roleplayers I know would rather see a roleplay continue moving than have it stop for two weeks while one player refines that perfect post.
This is so relatable for me right now. I find that the more important the post, and the longer I leave it, the more I worry about it not being good enough. :/ If I just bash 'em out, I'm fine with it, but if I'm making someone wait for something "epic" then I get nervous and procrastinate.
 

Archie

Not even my final form
Supporter
All the time. Good prose is very important to me, especially lately. I always feel like it can be better and sometimes rewrite the post from scratch, only to say the same thing. It's come down to trusting that I'm a good enough writer and realizing that most people skim RP posts anyway since time is limited and there are so many to keep up with.
 

serenity.au.reid.

Certified Jin Guangyao Apologist🧚‍♀️
This is why I sometimes take 50 years mulling over a post. I'll sit down at like... 7pm, then end up finishing it at like near 11 because I think too much. Sometimes I'll write a whole paragraph then delete. Or I'll get distracted because I need to find that "mood" and even then, sometimes I think aaahhh fuck this is horrible.

But if my roleplay partner likes my trash... Then.. Well...
opposumtrash.jpg
 

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