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The Wordsmith's Forge
The Writing & Other Projects of Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith
ysabetwordsmith
Brief Fishbowl Followup
Okay, yesterday's Poetry Fishbowl went bonkers again.  I'm still processing what happened and why, and how to work with it.  A bunch of new poems are already up; click the "poem" tag to see them.  I didn't get through all the prompts I wanted to cover -- or even one from everybody -- so I'm going to try doing a bit more today.  Plus I have all the usual aftermath work to do.  We need to make an extra trip into town today as well.  Just keep an eye on my blog, and I'll do my best to keep you-all posted on developments.  And look at the fishie swimming!


$201.50 raised, first goal MET, second goal MET

In case I haven't mentioned it lately, my audience is made of 100% gold-plated WIN.  I love you all.

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Current Mood: accomplished accomplished

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Comments
viva_la_topknot From: viva_la_topknot Date: August 3rd, 2011 07:06 pm (UTC) (Link)

Sorry to hear that things went wonky but happy to hear that I am gold-plated win!
marina_bonomi From: marina_bonomi Date: August 3rd, 2011 07:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
I don't know if I should commiserate you or offer congratulations, Elizabeth.

>yesterday's Poetry Fishbowl went bonkers again. I'm still processing what happened and why, and how to work with it> has me worried, but >In case I haven't mentioned it lately, my audience is made of 100% gold-plated WIN. I love you all.> sounds like you're pretty happy with the experience...
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: August 3rd, 2011 07:32 pm (UTC) (Link)

Okay...

It wasn't a bad experience, just a bit more than I could handle with complete fluency. I simply need to look at what happened and figure out how to arrange things so it will be easier to handle in the future. One of those problems that's nice to have, if that makes sense. I have some ideas already.
marina_bonomi From: marina_bonomi Date: August 3rd, 2011 07:34 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Okay...

Good to hear that, I feel better. :)
msstacy13 From: msstacy13 Date: August 3rd, 2011 07:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
"Brief Fishbowl"
sounds like a polyamorous party game...
:)
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: August 4th, 2011 01:14 am (UTC) (Link)

*laugh*

So it does.
the_vulture From: the_vulture Date: August 4th, 2011 02:50 am (UTC) (Link)
>> In case I haven't mentioned it lately, my audience is made of 100% gold-plated WIN. I love you all.

We love you, too. :)

As for why this was different from most previous Fishbowls, it's hard to say. Certainly, all the additional press provided by the crowdfunding spotlight and the use of the fishie bar certainly didn't hurt. However, the impression I have for this one (and bear in mind I may be incorrect) is that you added more to the serial poems. These, I think require more time and effort than the poems that are not, simply due to the need to fit the ideas you're working with into a pre-existing paradigm that not only you, but many of your fans, have a great deal of attachment to. And just how many epic length poems did you write this time?
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: August 4th, 2011 03:12 am (UTC) (Link)

Thoughts

>>We love you, too. <<

*hugs*

>>As for why this was different from most previous Fishbowls, it's hard to say.<<

Some factors I have identified ...

* The more people comment and talk, the more messages there will be that seem to need a prompt reply. This is a basic factor in fishbowls. Higher participation is a good thing. I just have to keep an eye on the level and type of my interaction during the fishbowl.

* The more people buy during the fishbowl, the more time it takes me to upload poems. I do not like making people wait, plus posting poems does encourage other people to donate. This is not something I can delegate and not something I want to discourage.

* Adding the ticker took a little extra time. People really like the ticker, so I'd prefer to keep it. I may delegate updating it.

* Adding the linkback-perk-poem took up a substantial amount of extra time. People liked that too. I will probably do it again, though maybe not every month. I may delegate it; I've had an offer for this. We don't know yet whether this really drives traffic to my blog. I'll probably ask about that after I've done it a few more times, because previous input suggests that people often sample the fishbowl for the first time ... after having seen references to it several times.

Specifically, the ticker and the linkback accounted for the slow start early in the fishbowl. I had a trickle of prompts early, then a firehose that continued for most of the day and I never did catch up.

* Epics pwn me, sometimes for hours of time. Seriously, I worked on "Stained" off and on for a substantial chunk of the afternoon. There is little to be done about this, as I have only manual steering on my muse.

>> Certainly, all the additional press provided by the crowdfunding spotlight and the use of the fishie bar certainly didn't hurt.<<

I think these factors do apply.

>> However, the impression I have for this one (and bear in mind I may be incorrect) is that you added more to the serial poems. These, I think require more time and effort than the poems that are not, simply due to the need to fit the ideas you're working with into a pre-existing paradigm that not only you, but many of your fans, have a great deal of attachment to.<<

This is true.

Oh, and another thing that eats time but tends to produce good results: poems that require inline research to write. It'll take me half again to three times as long to write a poem that has to begin with research to set up the framework, compared to one I can just write straight off the top of my head. Look at "master of water, master of wood" -- it isn't really all that long, but I had to skim the historic examples, morph them into a fantasy version, hack the correspondences, figure out how that fit with my characters' story arc, and then write the poem. Again, not something I want to discourage, but if several of these stack in a single session and run away with me, that slows me down.

>> And just how many epic length poems did you write this time? <<

Um ... 5 so far, and two of those were downright huge. I have one poem left that I'm planning to write, about Nib and Brod, which is likely to be sizable.

Yes, epics do slow me down. But the first one I hit was the 8th poem, and that was well after lunchtime; I was running slow before then.
the_vulture From: the_vulture Date: August 6th, 2011 06:14 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Thoughts

So, basically, what you experienced was too much of a good thing, then? :)
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: August 7th, 2011 05:15 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Thoughts

Well, it was certainly more than I could handle in a single day, with the project in that configuration. I have ideas for improving things though. Ideally, I can fix the workflow without quashing audience activity.
the_vulture From: the_vulture Date: August 7th, 2011 06:19 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Thoughts

I hope you're able to make it work; that was a great Fishbowl. :)
From: minor_architect Date: August 4th, 2011 03:48 am (UTC) (Link)
W00t! This month's Fishbowl met BOTH of its big donor-perk goals! Color me delighted. :)

(Do like the ticker, by the way. It really helps me keep track of sponsorships...and decide whether or not I should apply some encouragement.)
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: August 4th, 2011 03:53 am (UTC) (Link)

Yes...

>>W00t! This month's Fishbowl met BOTH of its big donor-perk goals! Color me delighted.<<

Yeah, I'm thrilled with this success as well.

>>(Do like the ticker, by the way. It really helps me keep track of sponsorships...and decide whether or not I should apply some encouragement.)<<

This is very useful information. The ticker does seem to help, but it also takes time to manage. Hearing from the audience whether it's useful to them helps me know whether it's worthwhile. I suspect it is, but more data is valuable.
marina_bonomi From: marina_bonomi Date: August 4th, 2011 01:12 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Yes...

One more vote for the ticker (and delegating its management), it's great to be able to see how the fishbowl is doing and how near (or far) the goals are.

Sorry about the time-consuming historical prompts, but I love bot history and what you do with it.
I'll try to give more 'no-background-research-needed prompts.
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: August 4th, 2011 05:12 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Yes...

>>One more vote for the ticker (and delegating its management), it's great to be able to see how the fishbowl is doing and how near (or far) the goals are.<<

This helps a lot, thank you.

>>Sorry about the time-consuming historical prompts, but I love bot history and what you do with it.
I'll try to give more 'no-background-research-needed prompts. <<

I like historical prompts, as well as other kinds. Some series are just going to lean that way, for instance. It's when things stack up that I start scrambling; this month there just happened to be a bunch of factors that ate time. Other months, I wind up doubling back to write extra prompts by the same people because very little is coming in. I'd say, if there are already several prompts that look like they'll take research and/or if the prompts are running way ahead of me posting thumbnails, that's a time when non-research prompts would be more welcome. But if there's not much going on yet, go ahead and give me something historical.

Basically, the kinds of things that eat time break down into things I can influence readily vs. things I can't, and things I'm willing to tinker with vs. things I don't want to mess up. I will at some point collate my musings into a post about what happened during this fishbowl and what I think can be done in the future to keep the activity high without swamping me.
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