Hello friends!

Before I start off this blog off, I just want to do a quick shameless promotion about my year-long challenge, The Mibba Revival Challenge. It is a year-long challenge filled with different activities you can set yourself with to keep Mibba looking active as possible, as well as to encourage everyone to write more! You can join in whenever you want, it’s never too late or too early. :)

Speaking of the challenge, one of the activities is a comment goal. They can be monthly or daily and you just set a number of comments you would like to post. Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about commenting and I was recollecting a user’s blog about comments. Despite it being a simple action, I like to think of it as something larger than that. Because in a way, comments are a large reason why people leave Mibba. I’ve noticed that people say, “Oh, I’m leaving Mibba because my work doesn’t get comments but on Wattpad/Ao3/etc. it does.”

Then I decided to read a user’s blog from like 5 years ago complaining about silent readers. They are one of those writers that say, “If I don’t get __ amount of comments, I won’t post the new chapter.” Sometimes, a user on here and I talk about that blog lol. Not gonna lie though, I think she only made that cause she asked me once how I got comments on my fics so quickly when hers didn’t.

With a lot of thinking, I decided why not make all of this into a blog and discuss comments, so here we go:
Silent Readers

What does it mean to be a silent reader? It’s a reader who reads the story but doesn’t comment. Maybe they subscribe or recommend the story, but they don’t comment on each new chapter. I think almost all of us are guilty of this, as am I. Is it wrong to be a silent reader? In my honest opinion, no. I’m not sure about everyone else on here, but I don’t feel the need to comment on everything I read on Mibba or comment every single time the story is updated. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t. I think it just depends on how “good” I find the story to be. If I like it or have something to say about it, I’ll leave a comment. There are things I like, but I guess not enough to comment. I don’t see the point in commenting if I didn’t feel much of a reaction. For me, I don’t want to force the comment/give a “fake” one for the sake of commenting. But I do try to comment now and then.

Does that mean that I shouldn’t comment at all? Absolutely not. Sometimes, I’ll read something and I feel horrible that it has no comments. It’s kind of funny to think about it now, I tend to comment on works that have fewer comments than works that have a lot. Here’s the thing authors, you may hate silent readers but trust and believe that they do enjoy your work. If we recommend it and someone sees that and reads it, I am sure someone is bound to comment. Patience friends. :)

Requesting Comments

I was going to make a pet peeves blog a while ago, but this was definitely one of the things that bug me. So the user who wrote the blog was someone who often asked for comments, which is fine, to an extent. I’d always ask for feedback, but it’s different when you’re demanding a certain amount of comments or else you won’t update the story. When I see that, it just “turns me off,” as in it makes me want to comment on it even less. Not like I wanted to in the first place, but there’s something about it that makes me cringe? I think that if you want comments or are going to ask, there are better ways to do that instead of demanding and threatening not to update lol. Asking for feedback is a more polite way to say it, to me at least. What is everyone’s opinion on the matter? When someone demands comments, does it turn you off?

How to Give Comments

So she gave examples of what she considered to be good comments. And it makes me wonder, what makes a good comment? I will leave the question at that and I’d love to hear what your interpretations of a good comment are. Mine kind of vary.

I think when I started posting on Mibba, I was always super thrilled by the “This is good” or “Please update” because hey, my work actually got comments. And somehow, those seem to be the comments that weren’t enough for some authors, which I understand. You spent all this time writing only to get vague/half ass comments, it can get under some people’s nerves. I often wonder if those same people are now desperate for those simple comments they oh-so loathed. I think those comments are fine, because I at least know that people enjoy the story. Would I like to learn more about what it was they liked? Of course, but I don’t feel the need to bug people about it.

The thing about commenting is that sometimes it’s hard to comment. For me, if I struggle to let out a comment, then I don’t comment at all. It’s like forcing a compliment for me. If I don’t have anything to say about it, then I don’t bother. But if you feel like that you enjoyed the story and you don’t want to offer a “bland” comment like “please update” or you want tips for comment then here we go!

I. Sandwich: compliment/critique/compliment. Essentially, you start with things you liked about the story to ease the author. Then you go ahead with your criticism/corrections, just to let them know to help them. Finally, you end the comment with more compliments, so you’re not ending it on a “negative” note. More details about this can be found in this helpful blog. :)

II. Pick things that stood out to you while you were reading. How did it make you feel/your reaction? What did it remind you of? It lets the author get a good understanding of what you liked. Sometimes, vague comments leave the author confused or thinking that you didn’t read their work.

III. Pick things that you disliked. Don’t feel intimidated telling the author what you didn’t like. As long as you give them a reason, it’s fine. Because if you say “I didn’t like this chapter” it leaves them a bit taken back as opposed to “I didn’t like this chapter because my favorite character died and now I’m sad.”

IV. Give constructed criticism, if necessary. If you spot an error, don’t be shy to point it out! The constant worry is that the author might be upset, which is completely understandable because not everyone can take it. Again, the sandwich method comes in handy because it can ease the “burn” of the criticism. But if the author tries to fight you about it, you should probably report them to an admin because that’s not okay.

V. Comment things you think will happen in the story or what you hope will happen.

If these tips sucked (sorry!), then here’s another more helpful blog!

If you’re also wondering how long a comment should be, my advice is 50-100 words is a good place to start. Do all of your comments have to be that length? No, but as long as you write what you want to say, that’s what matters.

How to Receive and React to Comments

The real question is, how do you receive comments? Especially since Mibba is “dead” in a way. The answer is simple and it all involves you, my friends: Share your stories.

No one will get the word out about your work more than you. You’re making a blog? Do a quick, shameless promotion about your work. Put a link on works you’d like more comments on in your signature. Someone asks for a recommendation on what to read? Don’t be afraid to throw your work out there. Someone says they like your work? Be like, “Thank you. If you like __, then you should check out ___.”

Something that also seems to be a personal problem with me is when someone is like, “My work isn’t getting comments here but on Ao3/Wattpad, I’m getting more.” Like yeah, that’s great but if it’s really a problem, promote your work from Mibba on other sites. Like, if you’re posting on Ao3, it also doesn’t hurt to be like, “If you like this fic, check it out on Mibba because that’s where I’ll update it first.” That’s what I do on other sites, especially if I see that the fandom is bigger on there than on here. Which is another thing, if you see that maybe the fandom you read/write for isn’t on Mibba but on other places, recommend that shit on here. I tell people from other fandoms that Mibba is a great site and they should post their work on here to share their fandom. Promote your work and promote Mibba, I think that can help.

Another way is to get comments is the comment swap. Now I know maybe some of you won’t like the idea just because users “have” to give you a comment in order to get a comment on their work, but it doesn’t hurt. It’s great because you can pick the work you want to get comments on and others can get comments too. Below are some of the comment swap threads, don’t be afraid to check them out!

Drabble for Drabble
Oneshot for Oneshot
Poem Comment Thread
Story Review Thread
The (Giving) Comment Swap Thread
Story Comment Swap

All I can say for reacting to them is to be thankful, especially since this site is kind of dead. If someone gives your criticism, don’t get angry. If it throws you off, just ignore it. When people give you criticism, it’s to help you, not to upset you. That’s the thing I like about Mibba, is that it’s a site that really goes out of it’s way to help you be a better writer.

In Conclusion?

The truth of the matter is, for me, comments mean a lot. I want to think of myself as a writer who writes only for themselves, which is true to an extent but comments now and then doesn’t hurt. Comments do go a long way. And it goes a long way for a lot of people. Not all authors need a comment to write; some write anyway without comments. Do you have to comment all the time? No, but if you’re someone such as myself and you’d like a comment thrown your way, it doesn’t hurt to do the same for others. Are you allowed to be a silent reader? Absolutely, and don’t let people think you have to comment. Comment on your own free will.

Writers: not receiving comments does not make you a bad writer. There is no correlation. Don’t beat yourself for the lack of comments, they will come along eventually. If you’re impatient about it, don’t be afraid to promote your story to gain readers/comments. And don’t let people trash you for shamelessly promoting your work.

But there is no denying that comments mean a lot, I cannot stress that enough. Comments are a large portion of why people don’t post on here/leave Mibba. Your comments do matter, my fellow readers. I challenge you to go out and comment on some works. You may or may not get satisfaction out of it, not that it really matters, but it’ll make an author’s day if you do. If you want to complain about the lack of activity or how dead Mibba is, then you go out and do something about it, and commenting is a great way to start.

(Sorry if I came off like a bitch in this blog, but a sis has to rant.)
March 8th, 2019 at 09:34pm