Gabrielle's picture
Gabrielle from Shepherdstown WV is reading Game of Thrones November 6, 2012 - 2:56pm

I signed up again for a $45 membership and got NO points. Although the advertisement says that I will receive fifteen free points on the page, it is misleading as to what qualifies as a new member and frankly, is silly to punish returning members.

sean of the dead's picture
sean of the dead from Madisonville, KY is reading Peckerwood, by Jed Ayres November 6, 2012 - 3:03pm

I hear points are given away with every single helpful review that you give someone in the workshop. 

 

Renfield's picture
Renfield from Hell is reading 20th Century Ghosts November 6, 2012 - 3:05pm

Should've probably PM'd one of the site admins before making this thread, could be a glitch or mistake since no one else seems to have had the problem.

Renfield's picture
Renfield from Hell is reading 20th Century Ghosts November 6, 2012 - 3:07pm

Also if you just renewed a previous account, your points remain at were they were before your membership ran out.

SConley's picture
SConley from Texas is reading Coin Locker Babies November 6, 2012 - 3:09pm

Yeah i'm rejoining the workshop soon and i'm not expecting the 15 points again. That's not really a lot of points anyway if you're reviewing even semi-regularly.

Gabrielle's picture
Gabrielle from Shepherdstown WV is reading Game of Thrones November 6, 2012 - 3:14pm

I'm going to have to review a lot of stories. I am not a professional reviewer so it is more difficult for me to reign in the points as others can. I also have a full schedule. I paid money for this website, and I can't post a story yet. I've reviewed plenty of works, but this takes time and money. Perhaps I should stick to forums and try to get refunded. My mistake.

Renfield's picture
Renfield from Hell is reading 20th Century Ghosts November 6, 2012 - 3:18pm

Nobody is a professional viewer here so it's no more difficult for you as it is anyone else. You'd have to review, what, like 3 or 4 stories. If there's actually any concern other than you buying something you didn't want then I'd reiterate contacting a site administrator.

Matt Attack's picture
Matt Attack from Richmond, Va. is reading As I Lay Dying, William Faulkner November 6, 2012 - 3:22pm

I am not a professional reviewer"

You really only need three stories to submit one. Is it three, or five. Something. Not alot. Sadly, I am still in the top ten of reviewers, so chances are there are plenty out there waiting for your touch and lots of folks needing help. No one is a professional. Just be honest and you'll get the points. 

bryanhowie's picture
bryanhowie from FW, ID is reading East of Eden. Steinbeck is FUCKING AMAZING. November 6, 2012 - 3:29pm

You'll learn more about writing by reviewing than you can possibly imagine.  It's really where the craft is honed.  You want to write, then you have to read.  And your input helps others as well as yourself.  It's a challenge.  Do it and you'll improve.

ReneeAPickup's picture
Class Facilitator
ReneeAPickup from Southern California is reading A truckload of books November 6, 2012 - 3:40pm

Yeah it isn't a misleading advertisement, in my opinion. You get the points for a NEW membership. Otherwise people would only join the workshop when they had something to submit and use the free points.

And no one here is a "professional reviewer" and most people are generous with their points. You can't actually be upset that you are expected to review others work in order to get reviews on your own? The people reviewing in the workshop are under the same rules as you, no one is getting paid to go in there and review your story so you can feel like you got your "money's worth." Like everything in life--you will only get out of this what you put into it. Almost every member on this site has a full time job, family obligations, college, etc. You make time or you don't. That's not on LitReactor, it's on you.

In addition to reviewing being something you learn from--you get a lot for that $45, including the craft essays that can help you become a better writer and reviewer.

bryanhowie's picture
bryanhowie from FW, ID is reading East of Eden. Steinbeck is FUCKING AMAZING. November 6, 2012 - 3:44pm

I'm totally a professional reviewer.  I've had stories I've critiqued published in pretty big places.  I'm also really good looking and great in the sack.  Tell your friends.

ReneeAPickup's picture
Class Facilitator
ReneeAPickup from Southern California is reading A truckload of books November 6, 2012 - 3:49pm

I can't vouch for your last claim, but one of your reviews was pretty pivotal in getting one of my stories published. I actually think of you every time I start to write that someone "Smiled" now.

bryanhowie's picture
bryanhowie from FW, ID is reading East of Eden. Steinbeck is FUCKING AMAZING. November 6, 2012 - 3:54pm

You can't vouch for it... yet.

Matt Attack's picture
Matt Attack from Richmond, Va. is reading As I Lay Dying, William Faulkner November 6, 2012 - 3:58pm

She's married to a Jarhead. I'd watch it. Haha

ReneeAPickup's picture
Class Facilitator
ReneeAPickup from Southern California is reading A truckload of books November 6, 2012 - 4:01pm

Oh, he's not nearly as dangerous as I am.

Mess_Jess's picture
Mess_Jess from Sydney, Australia, living in Toronto, Canada is reading Perfect by Rachael Joyce November 6, 2012 - 4:02pm

You might prefer http://www.scribophile.com/, if you don't like the way things are run here at Litreactor. I understand it's free.

 

 

 

 

ReneeAPickup's picture
Class Facilitator
ReneeAPickup from Southern California is reading A truckload of books November 6, 2012 - 4:08pm

Scribophile is free, but still requires one to review several stories in order to be able to continue to submit more of their work. I think you'd be hard pressed to find a site that lets people post their stuff up without reciprocation.

Mess_Jess's picture
Mess_Jess from Sydney, Australia, living in Toronto, Canada is reading Perfect by Rachael Joyce November 6, 2012 - 4:12pm

@SparrowStark - Good thing you clarified, I was potentially misleading there ;)

ReneeAPickup's picture
Class Facilitator
ReneeAPickup from Southern California is reading A truckload of books November 6, 2012 - 4:36pm

;)

bryanhowie's picture
bryanhowie from FW, ID is reading East of Eden. Steinbeck is FUCKING AMAZING. November 6, 2012 - 4:56pm

Isn't sparrow a jarhead, too?

ReneeAPickup's picture
Class Facilitator
ReneeAPickup from Southern California is reading A truckload of books November 6, 2012 - 5:18pm

Yes, she is. And sometimes she gets angry when people who know that focus on her husband's service and not her own, as though hers is somehow less than his. Sometimes. You know. Just saying.

bryanhowie's picture
bryanhowie from FW, ID is reading East of Eden. Steinbeck is FUCKING AMAZING. November 6, 2012 - 5:21pm

I thought you were.  My dad was a marine.  Total respect for you and your husband.  

ReneeAPickup's picture
Class Facilitator
ReneeAPickup from Southern California is reading A truckload of books November 6, 2012 - 5:23pm

Thanks. 

Courtney's picture
Courtney from the Midwest is reading Monkey: A Journey to the West and a thousand college textbooks November 6, 2012 - 10:12pm

It's been mentioned before, but renewal does not get you more points. That wouldn't be worth it. The point of the first free fifteen points, in my opinion, is so that you can see how to review well. The entire point of the workshop is exchange.

Also, it's true that reviewing is how you really hone your craft. You learn much better by teaching than by being taught, and you can notice problems in others' work that you didn't notice in your own.

Stories are rarely above 2,500 words and even the largest rarely take more than half an hour to critique for someone who has reviewed just three or four stories. A lot of stories are under 2,000, and a solid flash piece can take as little as fifteen minutes to review. You don't get more or less points based on word count like at Scribophile (if I remember correctly.) Scribophile also has far less quality reviews.

Gabrielle's picture
Gabrielle from Shepherdstown WV is reading Game of Thrones November 7, 2012 - 9:03am

Yeah well it appears it's worthless. I wrote a review that I tried my best on to point out things that I wanted to know more about, etc. well I got my first "unhelpful review" wow welcome back...I really want to a refund now, who do I contact to get a refund?

Brandon's picture
Brandon from KCMO is reading Made to Break November 7, 2012 - 9:37am

@Gabrielle

I'm looking at the review in question. IMO it didn't deserve the "not helpful" designation, however, we do try to give the benefit of the doubt here before we get all huffy and start demanding a refund. 

It's possible the user may have accidentely clicked the wrong thing.

It's also possible that the user felt you didn't address their areas in question to their satisfaction.

Usually in these cases, it's best to send a PM and find out exactly what's going on. I would recommend doing that.

Mess_Jess's picture
Mess_Jess from Sydney, Australia, living in Toronto, Canada is reading Perfect by Rachael Joyce November 7, 2012 - 9:42am

I read your review that I suspect you got the "Unhelpful review" feed back on. Personally, I probably would have softcocked out on giving you an unhelpful review, but I couldn't see any feedback in there that was very useful. Broad stroke comment is very dififcult to use in redrafting stories. If you're going to make a comment about how somebody should improve their story, it's always best to give examples.

So where you've said: 

2. The world needs expanded upon, majorly. though what you've done so far here is made it very realistic, it still needs work.

I'd suggest giving a concrete example from the story, a quote or two, of where you feel the world was lacking and what you wanted more from it. 

Many of us (and may I say, I'm not a professional reviewer, and I'm not aware of anyone on this site who is a professional reviewier) do line by line suggestions in another word document and upload it. You don't have to comment on every line, just say what you're thinking as you read through the story - both the positive and negative stuff.

If you don't actually know how to write a helpful review, you really should read the Help section in the Writer's Workshop. It has a whole section devoted to how to write a helpful review. 

There is also a sticky thread up the top of these forums (http://litreactor.com/discuss/an-in-depth-introduction-to-litreactor) that Courtney created giving new members an introduction on how to use litreactor, both the forums and the workshops. It was stuck right up to the top so new members would read it and not have these situations.  

In any event, you sound like you really don't want to be here, and I got the impression from the first post, so that's why I suggested an alternative site.  Here's the link if you need help on discussion cancelling your membership or whatever: http://litreactor.com/about/help

bryanhowie's picture
bryanhowie from FW, ID is reading East of Eden. Steinbeck is FUCKING AMAZING. November 7, 2012 - 9:48am

may I say, I'm not a professional reviewer, and I'm not aware of anyone on this site who is a professional reviewier

Damn it, I'm the Centaur!  RESPECT ME.

But seriously, I once accidently gave an unhelpful review click.  I immediately PM'd the person and appologized.  

Gabby, you need to nut up (ovary up?  clit up?).  You spent the money.  Read the essays, take advantage of the forum by asking questions, read our threads about good reviewing.  Put in the time and it will pay off.  I know this.

Sound's picture
Sound from Azusa, CA is reading Greener Pastures by Michael Wehunt November 7, 2012 - 9:49am

would have softcocked out on giving you an unhelpful review

 

I have never heard that expression before, but it made me laugh.  :)

sean of the dead's picture
sean of the dead from Madisonville, KY is reading Peckerwood, by Jed Ayres November 7, 2012 - 10:06am

I've been split on if this whole situation was a joke, but I'm starting to think it's not.  In which case, my suggestion for you is, in the future, if you don't know if you'll like something, DON'T go all in and spend $45 on it when you could easily spend $9 and give yourself a 1 month trial run.  That way, if you don't like it, you only lost $9.  It's a simple approach to life that will save you so many headaches.

P.S. I'd be so much more impressed if you had spelled everything wrong in your initial complaint.

Matt Attack's picture
Matt Attack from Richmond, Va. is reading As I Lay Dying, William Faulkner November 7, 2012 - 10:09am

I'd rather not see you go, but if you do, Kirk should be able to help with any further billing inqueires. 

 

Also softcock, c'est parfait! Ha! Never heard it before. 

Mess_Jess's picture
Mess_Jess from Sydney, Australia, living in Toronto, Canada is reading Perfect by Rachael Joyce November 7, 2012 - 10:12am

@howie - I respect you, Centaur! 

@sound & Matt - I think softcock must be an Australianism. I thought the whole world used the term!

Utah's picture
Moderator
Utah from Fort Worth, TX is reading Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry November 7, 2012 - 10:14am

It's going to now!

Sound's picture
Sound from Azusa, CA is reading Greener Pastures by Michael Wehunt November 7, 2012 - 10:15am

Maybe the whole world does and I'm just a loser. Regardless, Australians are instantly awesome in my book.

Matt Attack's picture
Matt Attack from Richmond, Va. is reading As I Lay Dying, William Faulkner November 7, 2012 - 10:18am

I do plan on starting to use it and then telling everyone I came up with it. 

bryanhowie's picture
bryanhowie from FW, ID is reading East of Eden. Steinbeck is FUCKING AMAZING. November 7, 2012 - 10:22am

DON'T go all in and spend $45 on it when you could easily spend $9 and give yourself a 1 month trial run

Shit, good point.  I've been buying it 1 month at a time.  Have to change my subscription.

sean of the dead's picture
sean of the dead from Madisonville, KY is reading Peckerwood, by Jed Ayres November 7, 2012 - 10:35am

@BryanHowie: I hear that when you change your subscription you get 15 free points

avery of the dead's picture
avery of the dead from Kentucky is reading Cipher Sisters November 7, 2012 - 10:40am

^^^ stop spreading lies

bryanhowie's picture
bryanhowie from FW, ID is reading East of Eden. Steinbeck is FUCKING AMAZING. November 7, 2012 - 10:56am

15?  Fuck, I got a free 590!

Stacy Kear's picture
Stacy Kear from Bucyrus, Ohio lives in New Jersey is reading The Art of War November 7, 2012 - 11:36am

"Softcocked" tee hee 

i gave an unhelpful once, when I first started because of my phone. I didn't realize until I received a scathing message. I was mortified and took the steps to give (insane lunatic) the member his points. I've never given an unhelpful, and I have been given many unhelpful reviews. The good reviews make up for those, and I just keep in mind that people grow and get better if they stick around and really try to use the site for al it's worth. 

(P.s. sorry I haven't reviewed in awhile, going through a life crisis.) 

Brandon's picture
Brandon from KCMO is reading Made to Break November 7, 2012 - 11:42am

I think I've marked "unhelpful" like two times ever (and I'm counting Cult Writers' Workshop too), but it was obvious the reviewer was cherry-picking...like a two sentence "review." You could tell it was all about them trying to get enough points to post their own shit and they didn't care.

sean of the dead's picture
sean of the dead from Madisonville, KY is reading Peckerwood, by Jed Ayres November 7, 2012 - 12:02pm

You could tell it was all about them trying to get enough points to post their own shit and they didn't care.

...which it seems is exactly what this person is telling us they want to do.  So, sure, it sucks that someone gave a "unhelpful" rating, but can we really blame them?

Courtney's picture
Courtney from the Midwest is reading Monkey: A Journey to the West and a thousand college textbooks November 7, 2012 - 12:17pm

Gabby, I looked for the review in question and first of all, it's kind of crass to publicize the rating you received. Second, the questions Emme listed in her Agenda are longer than your responses to them. That's an automatic sign that you haven't given enough thought to the process.

I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and say that you didn't feel like you had any more to say on the subject. That's fine. Just either don't give the review without expecting few points or don't review it at all. It's not a waste of time to read others' works -- everything you say in the review is something you learned or was reinforced by reading it. That's something to remember when you review; you're doing it for the author's benefit, but it also helps you.

And LBLs have been mentioned before; they're the best part of reviewing, in my opinion. You get to really dig into a story and see what works and what doesn't. Don't let the fact that you're not a "professional reviewer" scare you. There are tons of things out there to help you -- including my thread -- and there's a lot to be said for the craft articles.

drea's picture
drea from Rural Alberta, Canada is reading between the lines November 7, 2012 - 1:06pm

Can I cash my points in for airmiles? 

avery of the dead's picture
avery of the dead from Kentucky is reading Cipher Sisters November 7, 2012 - 1:11pm

can I take the to the arcade for prizes?

Jack Campbell Jr.'s picture
Jack Campbell Jr. from Lawrence, KS is reading American Rust by Phillipp Meyer November 7, 2012 - 1:46pm

Can I use them in my presidential campaign?

Stacy Kear's picture
Stacy Kear from Bucyrus, Ohio lives in New Jersey is reading The Art of War November 7, 2012 - 1:59pm

Can I use them to tip strippers?

bryanhowie's picture
bryanhowie from FW, ID is reading East of Eden. Steinbeck is FUCKING AMAZING. November 7, 2012 - 2:55pm

Strippers, alas, do not take points for lapdances.  Politians do.

La Emme Nikita's picture
Class Facilitator
La Emme Nikita from Los Angeles is reading A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms by George R.R. Martin November 7, 2012 - 4:26pm

Why, y'all have been talking about me. I thought my ears were tingling.

@Courtney Thanks for the endorsement, girl.

Yes it is I, the points-withholding bitch. I rated the review "not helpful" because it was indeed, not helpful. Prior to rating I discussed this with a few friends, then wrote a reply to the reviewer explaining where they'd gone wrong (which I learned today either disappeared or didn't post). As I said in that response, there was nothing in the review that I could use to improve the story. And honestly it read like an "I want points" review, which, now that I'm aware of this thread, I feel justified in thinking.

I've learned it's hard to rate reviews when a reviewer doesn't "get" it. I've handed out a few "helpful"'s because of this- the reviewer is trying to corral me into a style or voice that isn't mine, or has misread the plot. One of those I regret because after looking back I realised I'd got a tonne of good "soft" information from it (I'M PUBLICLY APOLOGISING TO YOU, HOWIE). The others I don't. I give honest feedback, be it on a story or on a response to my story. I truly appreciate the time and effort put into an LBL and review, but if I can't take away a lot from it, I'm not going to rate it "very helpful" because it just isn't. MOST of the reviews I rate are, in fact, "very helpful", and I thank everyone for choosing to read my work and giving me thoughtful responses.

I have gotten some "helpful" reviews myself, and tried to learn from the experience. I always address specific questions in the agenda, and try to justify the star rating I give. I almost always do an LBL and aim to be constructive and encouraging at the same time, pointing out what does work alongside what doesn't. I realise that style is subjective and do try to make it clear that some of these "corrections" are a matter of style. If I am confused by something in the story, or the story itself, I say so rather than making an assumption. I feel bad when I fall short, and aim to do better next time.

An aside, which had nothing to do with my decision: I reviewed a story of Gabrielle's called "2212 The Rainbow Dress" upon joining the workshop (I was going to post a link to the submission but it appears to have been deleted). I never received feedback/points on that review. I get that people leave the workshop, and that's cool: it was early on and I didn't yet have a feel for who was active. But now that she's back I am a tad peeved that my review wasn't acknowledged.

drea's picture
drea from Rural Alberta, Canada is reading between the lines November 7, 2012 - 3:57pm

^ this post was rated as Helpful 11/7/12 

JEFFREY GRANT BARR's picture
JEFFREY GRANT BARR from Central OR is reading Nothing but fucking Shakespeare, for the rest of my life November 7, 2012 - 4:09pm

I think with the workshop, you kind of get what you get, and griping about it is beside the point. My reviews are concise, exacting, and brilliant -- yet I got a few 'unhelpfuls', and even a couple of just...nothing.

Just thought I'd point that out.

But in reference to this thread, it is irksome to see that 'Get these 15 points by joining' green banner on the workshop page. Of course I, a gent in posession of a shockingly high degree of intelligence and mental acuiity, discerned the true nature of the come-on: to wit, it applies only to new sign-ups. That being said, it is misleading. Most likely the workshop membership is just a flipped bit, so that banner is disaplayed when the bit is off, regardless of past status.

Good day to you, citizens.

JGB