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Aaron Milavec

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Is fanstory.com a safe place to be vulnerable?


To create a safe place for sharing personal stories, I believe that it imperative for reviewers to entirely omit any moral judgments, either positive or negative. For all practical purposes, a true life story should be treated as though it were a fictional narrative. The focus must be on the power of the written word to move us, to inspire us, to awaken self-examination, to exalt us, and, at times, to diminish us. That's why, in telling my personal story, I left in those moments where I felt moral outrage but then I catch myself and write, "Who am I to judge?"

How about you? You have personal stories that bend some moral rules and explore life outside the normal boundaries. DO YOU FEEL SAFE TO PUBLISH YOUR VULNERABLE STORIES WITH FANSTORY? If so, why so? If not, why not? [If you've had very bad or very good experiences, your input is urgently sought here.]


kiwisteveh


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RE: Is fanstory.com a safe place to be vulnerable?

Aaron, interesting question!

Short answer is 'Not entirely.' FanStory membership reflects society, so there are many sensitive souls, but there are also others who blunder, seemingly without a care, over personal and ethical issues.

In fact, if you take the time to examine reviews, often you will see those that are concerned about the morality of the story, the content, rather than the skill with which it is presented.

As a writer, you have choices - you can accept that some reviews will be focused on the message and therefore either positive or negative depending on the reviewer's point of view. You can ignore those reviews, although they may affect your ratings.

Or, as the saying goes, if you can't stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen i.e. be selective as to what you post, to the possible detriment of your progress as a writer.


DR DIP

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RE: Is fanstory.com a safe place to be vulnerable?
Never a truer word spoken Steve lol

I can surely vouch for that!

FOOT IN MOUTH

Foot in my mouth as I head south
My ratings as bad as my puku
Think before writing, is what I'm fighting
Or end up in the shit like I do

Saying what you think, can cause a stink
But sadly this advice never taken
Control one's finger around keyboard's you linger
never hold back on the viewpoint you're makin'

Just say with conviction, call it an affliction
Always express one's point of view
So you get into shit with humour and wit
It's just the depth that you're in the poo

dipshit






Gypsymooncat


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RE: Is fanstory.com a safe place to be vulnerable?
I agree with kiwisteveh too. I think Fanstory is a relatively safe place to be vulnerable, so long as the writer is aware there may be the odd insensitive person reading their work who can't help commenting with likewise insensitive comments.

If we can turn out what we write, knowing we did our best, gave of ourselves and did so willingly, then we need to accept what comes review-wise, both positive and negative.

Every person who does anything that a lot of people read/listen to/go to see, is automatically vulnerable to all sorts of critiques. We need to keep that in the back of our minds when we post anything that reflects our inner core.

Overall, I think Fanstory is a very supportive site, with a few exceptions to that rule. It's called the human variable...

mrsmajor

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RE: Is fanstory.com a safe place to be vulnerable?


When I'm trying to create a poem, I do enjoy using my own life's journey, thoughts and ideas...Not always will the response be positive, but that's alright, we all have a story to tell...For me writing poetry is a way of speaking, even realizing that not all readers will enjoy the post...I can't imagine doing it any other way...I find that most of the writers here appreciate what we write isn't to insult anyone.

I often get very kind and thoughtful reviews and comments, and if the piece isn't exactly a personal experience, I do let the readers know...I can only speak to writing poetry, since I don't write stories...If I should note that a particular writer's work does become upsetting, I choose not to read that writers work again...But I really don't find that...and I've been here for 15 Years...

Just Some Thoughts


Gypsymooncat


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RE: Is fanstory.com a safe place to be vulnerable?
Message edited:

mrsmajor, no truer words spoken! I've been here 12 years - with a few breaks in between - and know that writing from the depths of the heart is usually appreciated by reviewers, though not always. But as you said, if something doesn't resonate, or offends, then don't review/read that person's work again.

I know when I'm desperate for some "funny money" to promote something, I start at Page 1 of poems and stories, but I don't review anything I don't like, or that offends me (not that I've come across much that is offensive). I simply move on to another piece, eventually working my way down to Page 2 and so on. Getting that dollar value to promote your own work is fine, but not if it means making fluff comments on work you don't like or that offends you; what's the point?

Integrity is important. Feeling safe enough to be vulnerable is invaluable. Each of us, as individuals, can promote an environment that incorporates both. And ignore the heck out of (or report) those who don't!




DR DIP

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RE: Is fanstory.com a safe place to be vulnerable?
Seriously Aaron, it really gets down to how open you are as a person.

Some people are very private and hold their feelings and emotions in, others have their heart on their sleeve and although vulnerable are happy to share their lives through the written word with everyone.

It all gets down to personality. Some see spilling their emotions in public as rather cathartic or therapeutic others remain quiet introverted and never open up about their personal lives.

To me this site is like a family of like minded writers and poets who have a mutual trust.

Personally, I have no qualms telling it how it is.

I would like to think that openness is reciprocated.
You come here to express your emotions through the written word. Why hold back?

Some of one's best writes are written from the heart.

Respectfully Dip


Gypsymooncat


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RE: Is fanstory.com a safe place to be vulnerable?
Definitely agree Dr Dip! I think the best work comes from the heart, which automatically leaves the author vulnerable to the opinions of whoever reads it.

Fanstory is pretty much a family of like minded folk, which is why I always come back. I find I miss it's atmosphere if I've been gone too long.

I've been a member since 2008, and am proud to have been part of FS all these years.

Aaron Milavec

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RE: Is fanstory.com a safe place to be vulnerable?
Thanks for all the frank replies. I'm a newbie who has been posting only two weeks. When I posted some autobiographical stories, I felt uneasy. That's why I asked my question: "Is FanStory a safe place to be vulnerable?"

My original post was in the "discussion forum" for the Non-Fiction Writing Contest. As of this moment, there were 32 views with not a single reply. I didn't know what to think. Was the question itself so sensitive that no one wanted to risk putting forward their hunches and (more importantly) their experiences? Unclear.

Then I accidently discovered the site's discussion forums. I reposted my query in the General Forum. I thought that it would get lost in all the other interesting topics. No so.

So thank you, thank YOU, THANK YOU to the eight brave writers who responded to my query in a way that exceeded my expectation. Each one has his/her special virtue. I am only sorry that I can't use copy and paste here so as to offer readback lines for everyone who posted.

In the end, because of you, I'm going to tell my life story as I know it and as I lived it, and to let the chips fall where they may.

Bill F., my long-time friend and avid writer, told me one day, "I always rate my own stories before I post them. Then, I listen carefully to what others say to me, but I always remember that my MOST INTIMATE CRITIC has already spoken."

Fraternally,
Aaron


DR DIP

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RE: Is fanstory.com a safe place to be vulnerable?
Looking forward to reading it Aaron...from the heart

dip


Gypsymooncat


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RE: Is fanstory.com a safe place to be vulnerable?
Well, I wish you all the luck in the world Aaron. Often, a Site like Fanstory, is a way to get those demons and cobwebs out and gone. When we hold things inside ourselves, they can fester. Writing about them is a great way of loosening that hold. I like the quote from your friend too; I think most of us who publish here, are our worst critic. I know when I've delivered something good or, dare I say it, great. I also know when I've produced something pretty average. But even in saying that, others' perception of what we write can be entirely different, so we all need to be prepared for that.

I once was told "write what comes naturally". I think that's true as well as writing from the heart; both are very strongly connected.

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