When I took up writing and roleplaying, I did so because it seemed like a fun way to engage my imagination, and those of others. I wasn't very good at first, but I also had very high expectations of myself and constantly strove to improve.
It's really up to partners to be on about the same page as to whatever "quality" of anything they might be trying to reach together. Of course if one is writing solo, then one can impose whatever -- and then need only worry about say, a possible external audience if it matters to the author.
However, as time went by, I began to become more and more aware of less than skilled fanfiction writers and roleplayers who were only interested in flooding sites with yaoi/slash fiction, one hair-brained story after another, and a lot of self-insert fiction that centered less around the story, and more about the author and just how far they had their head up their ass.
Disclaimer -- I don't focus much on fan fics, although I do read certain aging types occasionally. I always find terms like 'self-interest' -- or some have said to me here and in academic contexts in life as well, 'too much identity theme' -- to be problematic. It's a more ideological and philosophical problem at the core for me. Of course if you aren't into what someone else hints about the world and society in their stories, you might feel it's missing something you'd rather be spending time on. And we tend to say things are "too specialized for me" or even "narrow" (getting slightly meaner maybe
?) then. Next let's take "narrow," then for example: It's a handily vague and double-edged word but extremely
common in use.
But moving closer to say, words like selfish or perhaps fringe? Those are the kinds of valence I usually sense in longer reviews where terms like self-interested also crop up. Sometimes I have to ask, umm why? Simply because the critic probably had some other
interest entirely? Perhaps because they felt their own form of standpoint (trying to avoid the also rather multiple meaning but again, very common "distancing" here) was somehow better? It can get weird and messy.
Of course, such stories and writers, when they weren't being showered in praise, were booed into oblivion.
Just a thought: Who is this critique for
-- you, a partner with a given particular interest you'd like to focus on too, or "General Audiences" as the movies like to say? And have you considered the possibility that a movie many people like is often blasted by many of the media critics who write columns on movies? Or that a novel you might personally find great value or amusement in, might not appeal to many other people sometimes? There's a potential for tyranny of the majority here too -- the booers can simply not get it. Who cares how many of them there are. Or why do you care here exactly
When I tried to get into roleplaying more seriously on places like IMVU, it was difficult to find partners who weren't going to dissolve everything into meaningless internet drama. Part of the problem was that some of these players would absolutely never break character, under any circumstances. And in the few moments you get to talk to the writer, and not the character they play, they say it's because they roleplay to escape reality, not address it. Of course their unwillingness to distinguish reality from fiction strained things with people and more drama ensued.
I do think there's a lot of questions in here, but more like with the first quote above, I sort of think there are many (very!) different particular but viable ways to answer them too. And when people really don't agree or can't seem to get the same level of elaboration even about those answers, that's called "drama" too. Terribly often.
It was then I came to the conclusion that escapism was bad; from fanfic writers who were more concerned with imposing their personal fantasies unto their readers, to roleplayers who made everything confusing because they just couldn't talk to their partners as themselves.
Again, I don't really follow fanfic that much... But I keep wondering, what of situations where people are working to collaboratively roleplay fan fiction? Does that change anything or is it just compounding (or perhaps even confusing?) the issue when it comes to places rather big on roleplaying or at least interactive projects, like E?
I became increasingly annoyed with escapists. And I wasn't the only one, it seemed. I've seen plenty of articles, rants, reviews and so on talking about escapists how shit they are, especially writers who create and play as original characters and/or self-inserts.
Maybe I just don't get your genre community well enough to follow quite as closely as I'd like. But lots of people go around saying things are "too escapist," and I often find it like other social competition adjectives. Someone is said to be oh, "not responsible enough." Is that because they didn't pay back a loan to you when they promised you personally (and maybe even claimed to care about you informally, to make it more interesting), or is that because they didn't get the job that you
say anyone who isn't lazy should be interested in having and quite able to get -- regardless of what they say they're holding out for, or what maybe tends to happen to people who live in their neighborhood when they apply for jobs like that? On and on.
This was further aggrevated by some of my failed excursions on f-list. if canon players weren't refusing me because my character was original, they refused me because he was based off me, and some were very harsh about it. I came to realize that people automatically assume any self-insert character is a mary-sue; which is in short a shitty character an author makes, most presume to escape from how dull or shitty their real life is.
Personally I like to refer back to daily life and social conundrums at least a little, indirectly and probably a bit more... But quite a few people still find things I rather like, sorts of dubious to forced stories and tension plays, as very formulaic or requiring too much manipulation (Cause for them, coercive harem fantasies have "no" or at least too little, connection to real life? feminism would have something harsh to say about this view of what is social reality then)... Yes, though people do take really varied positions in what they want and then when we learn we don't match on just a few particular things we really had hoped for, sometimes the backing away doesn't come off very prettily.