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edited July 2006 in - WM and WN


  • Hi all,
    I often don't have much time to spare for this website now, which is a bit of a shame because I enjoy it. So now, when I do visit here, it would be good if the threads were relevant to the categories so if I go to Writing Queries I know it will all be relevant to queries directly related to writing/publishing/editing etc. I think there has been a lot of crossing over of categories and I find it a bit annoying that if I want info on writing (in writing problems for example) to be confronted with stuff that might go better in Writer's World, like the weather posts etc. I also think there are more general conversations going on than writing-specific conversations. Is it just me? Have I become too anal about it all? Help!
  • Webbo - your thoughts.

    I LOVE Talkback but I rarely get time to wade through. Apart from users sticking to the relevant forum (Which is out of your control) is there any way we could get the forum updated to include some of the more regular forum tools/options.
    It would make life a lot easier if we had the usual forum options such as; read postings since last visit, read responses to your postings, show unread items etc;

    As things stand I tend to concentrate on just a few sections due to time constraint but I sometimes nip across to others and there is frequently something of interest, or indeed, something posted to the wrong section.

  • I find sometimes, that the subject you want to begin with doesn't fall precisely within the set category, so I pick the nearest sounding one.
    Perhaps we should all start a new thread where the subject vears away from the original topic, but that could become confusing.
    Perhaps Webbo has some ideas. He's been a bit quiet lately, wonder if he's been basking in the sun too long.
  • I quite understand what you mean Moira - I find myself skimming over a lot of stuff because it is so far removed from it's original point.  Too much procrastination I fear.
  • Before anyone asks I've started a new thread from something that has started on the end of the plot thread- re buzz words. I'm sure we all have examples, you only have to listen to politicians!
    Back to the original subject folks,Categories.
  • I agree that when you want to post a new subject you can't always decide which category it belongs in.  There are now so many categories that I have to check through the list each time I want to post something to see which is which.  Could we have clearer distinctions between the writing and non-writing categories?  Their names sound a bit similar, with the obvious exception of poetry.  We don't want to discourage lively discussion or new people joining in.  Even a certain amount of veering off can be a good thing from a writer's point of view since our imagination often seems to work in a lateral way. Maybe the categories could just be more specific then if you're looking only for discussion on writing you know where to find it, or if you have more time and can chat you can go to a different category.
  • I agree with Lily. I usually go straight to All Categories so I get to see a bit of everything and don't miss anything good, but it is time consuming trying to read everything and it's a bit of a task picking out the stuff you are really interested in. Clearer distinctions would be great.
  • I find I'm having to use the Search facility so I can locate the right thread &/or don't duplicate one.
  • How can Webbo stop people posting in the wrong section or going off at a tangent? Would they be allowed a certain number of mistakes and then be banned from Talkback?

    Sometimes there's a passing irrelevant comment in a thread that invokes responses. This can happen sometimes when the original subject has been exhausted. Then a new topic takes over under the old heading.

    Does it really matter? It only needs a quick glance at the latest posts - if they're of no interest it doesn't take a second to move on.

    This is a friendly site. Let's keep it that way without unnecessarily strict rules.
  • Perhaps we need a Miscellaneous category. If we don't think our thread fits any of the others we put it in the Misc. category.
  • On both music forums I frequent (Bluehorses and Capercaillie), there's a category called 'Off-topic' - for anything unrelated to music or to the band in question.  There can be anything on there, but it keeps things simple, as there's an icon at the side of the threads which indicate if there are any new posts since your last visit.
  • Now I like that 'off-topic', that's a good idea.
  • Thanks for sharing your insight TT, I think it was helpful and reassuring.I agree that we need to be more specific with our headings, so we don't confuse.
    The difficulty of going off subject is partly to do with how we as writers think about subjects and association of stuff that seems to be connected. I'm guilty too, but have tried to open a new thread where it seemed relevant. Perhaps that's what we need to be aware of, if we go off subject.
    Any other suggestions.
  • I click on 'all categories' when I come on Talkback.
  • I think it's perfectly natural for us, as writers, curious lot that we are, to digress from the subject in hand - it makes for interesting conversation.  OK, it can be irritating - but writers can be irritating, anyway :o)  I do include myself in that category, before anyone gets offended - it was meant as a compliment.
  • I agree with all that has been said about the difficulties of keeping people on topic and that there is no need for this - also that it's a natural thing for writers to go off at tangents.  We love to communicate, we have great curiosity about everything and vivid imaginations to boot.  The threads on this forum pretty much reflect all my own rambling, firing in all dirctions, conversations! (pity my poor nearest and dearest) - and I suspect many of us are the same.  Starting new threads willy nilly every time the conversation veers a couple of degrees off track would only lead to dozens more to check - and I'm not sure I'd even be able to identify what a suitable break off point would be in some of them.

    I often don't come on here for 3-4 days, but then just go into All Categories and quickly skim messages.  I still need to be more disciplined about which I reply to, so that I don't get bogged down, but that's my own fault!  I refer my right honorable gentleman to my previous comments about being nosy and wanting to communicate on anything and everything...
  • So we can all keep going as we have been. Makes life easier.
  • Goody-goody. Now where are my jelly babies.
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