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Apparently we'll never grow out of twank.
When a campfire on ADF reaches 88 comments, you just know someone, somewhere, has pulled his or her fic.
Early this morn, Betty Smith, author of Gentleman from Washington State, pulled that same story from fanfail.net and Twilighted, leaving it up on her blog for the time being although it seems it will soon disappear from there also.
Pulling to publish has become such a pastime that it’s pretty much the default assumption when a story disappears. This doesn’t seem to be the case here. The cryptic campfire made it seem like BS pulled because she’d slammed another fic’s popularity and didn’t like the fallout. That assumption probably came from her 3/28 blog entry, which mentioned a fic called The Plan:
Remember when The Plan was hot and heavy on Twitter? “Big Name Authors” and “Big Name Readers” gushed over it. Readers were sucked in and with good reason. The plotline was the comfortable, yet exciting zone of UST. The phrasing and dialogue were crisp. And above all, it was an intravenous mainline of pure drug to the average Fic reader’s heroin like addiction to constant updates. It was all of those things, but I also thought it was a gimmick – a torturous dribble of porn decorated with the most tired plotline and setting possible. And no, I find nothing challenging in writing 300 word snippets every seven hours.
During that time I joked on Twitter that maybe I should chop up my next 6000 word chapter in 500 word increments over the week. People thought that was mean. Then I predicted that The Plan would change Fic forever by introducing smaller, more frequent chapters in an effort to garner more reviews.
Ooops. I’d crossed a line. I started to get re-tweeted as a Benedict Arnold. I lost followers instantly. I’d broken the unspoken rule that nothing negative could be said by another author.
It does seem strange that she would pull so soon after that, but while we don’t know how long ago this happened, the thing with The Plan looks like it’s an old reference. Besides, the entry only has 22 comments and they’re all standard sycophantia. So rather than assume it’s due to butthurt, we’ll turn our
bibles browsers to Betty 4:3 for Frequently Asked Questions about Why I Pulled The Gentleman from Washington State:
1. Why did you do it?
Because I wanted to.
2. Do you intend to publish it?
Why? Are you offering me a three book contract? No. Well, probably not. But maybe. If I were to publish it, the story would be largely unrecognizable from the one you’ve read. It would be a third of its size with very different characters. Plus, everyone who read it as a work in progress knows that I based the outcome on a real life election. I have an alternate ending all planned out, and frankly, it’s a better, more realistic one.
3. Why leave it on your blog if you pulled it from FFN and Twilighted?
Because I’m not ready to completely say good bye to it, and I wanted people who were in the process of reading the story when I pulled to be able to finish.
4. What made you decide to pull it now?
I was debating when to pull the story, and I’d been thinking that I’d pull it when I got to 10,000 reviews. Yesterday, I decided that was the most hypocritical, weenie reason I could think of. I complain all the time about voluminous, soap operatic stories where the plot is obviously perpetuated just to get more reviews. I always said that I wouldn’t do that, so yesterday afternoon, I impulsively hit “delete.”
5. If you may not publish it, why pull it from FFN?
Because the more distance I get from the story, the more I see its flaws – and there are many. Leaving a complete fic on FFN is like having a first draft out there that you really would like to fix, but can’t because you don’t have the time or motivation to mess with it. Also, I’m ready to move on. If I leave it on FFN, the story in its current flawed form will “live on” in reviews, PMs, etc. There’s very little of that with my blog.
6. Will you ever write a sequel or outtake?
No, but thanks for asking!
Please let me know if you have other questions, but really, there are far more important issues in the world to care about than why Betty Smith pulled a fic.
Ah, yes, the stock answer “Don’t you losers have anything better to worry about?” There are far more important issues in the world than how popular a fanfic writer you are and how many reviews you get, aren’t there? And speaking of review-begging, it looks like the next
commandment blog entry will be addressing that:
8. It’s considered rude to publicly promote yourself, but commonplace to anonymously slam others.
Funny you should mention publicly promoting yourself, since Google turned up this page from over a year ago, when KStew411 was still around. (They mostly tweeted news about “Stewey,” but also did fic recs, and one could argue that they were instrumental in making Master of the Universe into the monster it already was way back then.)
“The Gentleman from Washington State” by Betty Smith
We’ve got a little theme this week. Both stories came from the authors recommending them to me. It’s really rare–I can count on one hand how many ficsters have sent me their own stories. But I got a very nice email from Betty a couple weeks ago along with a link to her story, so I read it. And I fell in love. Lately I’ve been a bit off the angsty stories, but have been adding a lot of UST (unresolved sexual tension) to my fic caddy. “The Gentleman” is arguably one of the UST-iest stories you’ll ever find…
Emphasis ours. All right, which one of you bullies told her that was shameless? Come on, who? We’ll ban your ass so fast…
And of course, no grandstanding would be complete without the inevitable “anonymous bashing” argument. The irony, of course, being that we have no way of ever knowing whether the argu..er has done any anonymous bashing him/herself. (Unless the IP of someone complaining about anonymous blogs just happens to match someone who left bashy comments on said blog, but that’s not relevant to this post). Mind you, Betty Smith didn’t mind the original Twankhard so long as it let her know “what was going on in the world” and because “there’s some truth in the comments” (just the ones she agrees with, we presume):
1. LMAO – I was laughing because it was funny.
2. And yeah – I admitted that I read these boards, which even reading them is considered turncoat behavior by some.
3. What’s going on in the world – I read these boards because there are some kernels of truth in some of the readers comments. Regardless, it’s good to know what people are thinking – even if you disagree.
Teal deer? You don’t even have to be publishing to sound like a pretentious narcissist, and only losers explain why they’re leaving. 107yearoldvirgin, this means you!/sarcasm At least we’re spared the endless inane reminders of just how much she didn’t/doesn’t care and how she knew everything that was going to happen long before we ever knew anything was going to happen.