Saturday, August 04, 2007

No More HotK

(Edited to be less whiny)

With the most recent chapter, Due, I'm done with public posting of Hands of the King.

I've completed my writing, which is a good feeling. I have put in five years of work on this novel; researching Tolkien, interrogating conventions of fanon, trying to think with and against Tolkien's own meta-narrative of politics, religion, and society, developing plot and characterization, and going over and over the work to catch inconsistencies and errors. I think I've managed to do this and write an engaging tale. What I wanted to get from that endeavor, I have received.

I know I have readers on this story. I get between 600 and 800 page views a week on average. However, aside from my two friends Agape and Fergus, HotK readers have basically stopped providing any substantive responses. Only four people besides Agape and Fergus have posted a comment or sent an author email since January this year, and many of those have been private "You have a typo" in nature. The lack of substantive response aggravates me after having done all of that work. It may not be a reasonable reaction, but it is how I feel.

Maybe the story just isn't as good or engaging as it used to be. Whatever the reason, readers don't want to comment, I can't make readers comment, and I have deal with my frustration over that situation. My way to deal with it is to stop creating the situation in the first place. I have said myself in times past that the author's satisfaction with the work has to be with the work itself, and not done for the sake of squees. I'm happy with the story I have written and I'm not going to blackmail for comments.



Anonymous said...

I'm sorry for being one of the non-responders, even if I doubt I'd have been able to express myself much beyond 'it rocks'.

Anglachel said...

Nath, you have been a fully involved beta reader and provided plenty of comments during that phase. The story is so good in great part because of the reveiw and editing you, Julie, roh_wyn and DL7 provided. :-)

Anonymous said...

Doesn't mean I shouldn't have tried to say something publicly... and I may still end up doing so :-)

Anonymous said...

I don't know if you received the message I sent via, but since I found this blog, I'll try posting it here.

I am not a fanatical fanfiction-ite, but I think is an excellent site in general. I just registered on to be able to read all the stories and articles, and it was HotK that convinced me to finally register. I am not a writer and not even a critic, so I had never posted any comments. Perhaps more readers like me need to at least let authors know their works are appreciated. I hope you will change your mind about publishing the rest of HotK. New chapters and reading the final portions was something I have been looking forward to ever since I discovered the story, I think sometime last fall!

If you are willing to share the rest of the story, you should have my email address from the HASA/net registry.

- Helga

Anonymous said...

I discovered Hands of the King today and spent a ridiculous number of hours reading it from beginning to end. I'm deeply impressed by the amount of careful research underlying the story, and by the thoughtful imagining of the options available for women in Gondor. Your strong prince Finduilas, navigating between men's political power and women's sexual power, fascinates me. I'm more impressed by your choice to create the disabled female archivist Aiavalë, and then to refuse to leave her desexualized. Good work there.

I understand that sometimes projects need to be put aside, for reasons of health and sanity. Thank you for writing what you have, and I hope things improve for you. If you ever do go back to public posting of HotK chapters, I'd be delighted to know. My email address is rymenhild at yahoodotcom.