Scribophile, for serious writers

Scribophile, the online writing group for serious writers

Normally I review books, but today I’m reviewing a website. And I wouldn’t be doing it were it not for the fact that I find Scribophile to be the most impressive website for writers that I’ve seen to date.

I’ve indulged in other writing websites that fell short of the ideal (way short). Most of the writing websites I come across are just places where amateurs glorify each other, and those seeking validation enjoy a pleasurable ego-stroking. All of those sites have similar “review and critique” features, where you can “critique” a piece, usually for a certain number of points. I’m an editor. Naturally, I believe in a good old-fashioned honest critique. When I tried to provide an honest critique on other writing websites, I was met with great hostility from people who claimed that I was “mean”. This was especially disturbing because I had made sure to provide things that I liked, and things that I thought could be improved upon. Yet the recipients of my reviews felt that I was being harsh because I didn’t say, “OMG I love it!”

Scribophile, on the other hand, manages to attract serious writers. As soon as I saw the website, I could tell that it was geared toward those of us seeking publication. The community seems small enough that you can’t help but run into the same people in the forums, and there are constant discussions on publishing and marketing. I absolutely love this! It is a far cry from your every day run-of-the-mill online writing community. Not only do the members appear to support each other through encouragement, but they also tell it like it is–none of this silly sugar-coating that drives me batty.

I think it has a lot to do with the fact that you aren’t readily invited to post your own writing. From the get-go, you’re encouraged to critique the writing of others. I think this is a turn off to those searching for a mere ego-stroking, as they want to be able to post their work “Now!” and get immediate feedback on how fantastic they are.

Thank you, Scribophile, for creating a writing website that I can enjoy visiting, not just for critiques on my own writing, but for the opportunity to meet like-minded individuals who are as serious as I am about my craft.

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5 thoughts on “Scribophile, for serious writers

  1. Hey Rosa, I’m the Author of Elsewhere, Into, and Beyond, I was just starting to enjoy this website after signing up for premium services yesterday, I woke up today to find that I had been banned from the website, for my critiques. Here is my story, so if you believe in freedom of expression, please read the rest of this… I feel I was banned unjustly….

    My account name was Harold McBroom

    I joined Scribophile a week ago, and my first concerns were, will I have the writing environment that I’ve been searching for, with the tools needed to accomplish the job; I signed up, and discovered that I could only post 2 works at one time, unless I purchase the month to month plan which is $9, or the yearly plan which is $65 up front. So I purchased the $9 plan so that I could post unlimited works “at once”.

    The “at once” phrase means, you can consecutively post your written works all at once, but what they don’t tell you when signing up, is that it requires “karma” points. 5 karma points to write and release your work, so the “at once” terminology they use, becomes obsolete, because you can not post your unlimited works at one time, because you will constantly have to read and “critique” the works of others, to gain these karma points.

    I don’t mind reading the works of others, I rather enjoy it, but I have a problem with “critiquing” their works, because I’m not a professional writer, so how can I tell them what’s wrong with their writings, when the same problems probably exist within my own works, and you do not get karma points for submitting a “comment”. After reading someone else’s story you have the option to “comment”, or “Critique”; So no karma points issued for comments.

    Not only did I sign up for premium service yesterday, at $9 a month, but I woke up the very next day, that day, being today, to find that I have been banned, my account terminated, my works deleted, because the critique I offered was in fact critiquing the system that forced me to critique the works of others. Here’s an example of my critique:

    Critique

    “Dear John Doe, first off let me get the critique out of the way,
    Critique!
    …Now that we have the critique out of the way, I would like to say that I enjoyed your story, and here’s why…blah blah blah…

    I can’t critique your work, John, because I’m not a professional writer, so please accept this critique as a critique of the system that forces me to critique your work, when I find nothing wrong with it! Keep up the good work, and I look forward to reading more of your stories!”

    Writing is not about critiquing, it’s about being creative, and spontaneous in your thoughts, and the ability to transfer these thoughts into readable form that can be enjoyed by others!

    Why should I pay Scribophile, $9 a month to be forced read and critique the works of others? Another issue is I came across a pedophile , who wrote a story in which he played the role of a child in a location serving alcohol, where Disney characters where, and the bartender was using his sexual organ to stir his mothers drink…

    THIS is the type of behavior that is allowed, while I get banned, my account deleted for criticizing Scribophile’s critique system.

    • Hi, Harold,

      Firstly, I forgot I even had this post here. I haven’t gone in the Scribophile website in a long time. As I understand it, it is primarily for critiquing, so if you don’t want to critique, or have your work critiqued, it isn’t the place for you.

      I grow tired of these websites quickly, anyway, because I honestly don’t have time for them.

      Yes, I believe in freedom of expression, of course. But I’ll probably delete my actual blog entry once I feel like you’ve read this. :)

      Thanks for sharing.

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