To all of you Episode writers out there... Please be considerate to your readers when it comes to an episode

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#1

I am sorta of newish here. Let just me just say this one thing… I am not trying to start a flamewar/argument and certainly not trying to come off as rude, although this topic might offend few or a lot of people here. So I will say sorry in advance but if things slowly start to get out of hand I will request for this thread to be locked

A little about me:

I am a writer just like all of you. However, I do not write stories for episodes interactive. I tried and tried but I do not simply have the time nor motivation to do all of the coding episodes give the creator. So, props to all of you who can make time and make amazing stories with that setup. In 2015… From a popular YouTuber who was doing let’s play of the Meangirls series from Episode… Is where I found my love for this app.

It was not long until I found episodes/stories that do not require money for “better choice” results and outfits you buy for that one episode and not see it that outfit again for the remainder of the series of that story.

The issue

Now I do love what the fans for episode make. Some are good… Some are bad and some are really, really terrible. I am the type who like long lengthy stories and a story that is usually long running/going or is completed. I rarely read stories that are four or five episodes long & completed but, those short stories I do come across on reading are indeed enjoyable. Now, A lot of these newer stories I read and come across have something in common…

It is not the story itself but, it is usually the author notes. I do not mind the Author notes, I love how the Author does interact with their fans and all… Even though sometimes the Author notes can get out of hand at times… (And I may or may not get onto that particular part of what I mean by the “Author notes can get out of hand” later or in an entirely different topic). Now, onto the actual problem:

Most episodes I read have a customizable MC. Whatever MC has a preferred/Default name that the reader can or cannot change. This also includes certain eye color/hair/skin tone, etc. I am O.K. with these type of episodes… But usually, these type of stories also come with the Author 9 out of 10 complaining about how hard it is for them to implement the character customization and how you only have “one” chance to make your MC, Friend, parents, lover, and rival to make them how you envision them in their story. You will not get another chance.

ETC, etc. I usually make the characters to my liking and how I envision them in the story… As chapters go along later through story progression. The Author will, later on, change their mind about the whole “one chance” of customizing your main character and the other characters before beginning the chapter. This kind of switch a roo annoys me but I can deal with it. In within the recent, newer stories, I have been reading? It feels like I am being punished If the Author had too many complaints about their fans wanting to re-customize their characters because they messed them up and after a while, the Author gives in, into those complaints but in exchange for re-customizing your character over again (whatever the reader wanted too or not) the chapter that you have been waiting for days, weeks, months or possibly years will be cut short because of the customization being re-inputted in. Or there is one chapter that mainly focuses on customization and then you will likely have to wait for gods know how long for the actual chapter to come.

That really irks me… Not only but also did I waste my time in waiting months for this chapter to come out… Just to only get slapped in the face with: “Here customize your MC and their friends and I am going to start the real chapter in the next episode.” Whatever you realize it or not… You just wasted not only my time but also a ticket that could have been used for another story. Knowing how Episode is when an Author updates their episode, the app usually makes the reader re-read the previous chapter and so once more I will have to replay that episode that just wasted my time.

Please, if you are a writer for this app… Please, please be considerate to your readers, your fans when you decide to make a customizable “chapter” only.

There are readers and fans out there that buy extra tickets just to read your story and not for their ticket to get wasted due to you not taking the time to put it into the description that: “This episode will be customization only, and the real chapter will come soon.”

I understand that the character customization is not easy to work with. I tried to implement it into my stories when I was still trying to get things to work for the whole writer’s creativity thing. It was difficult… But I will say this, it is your story… At the end of the day, you do what you want to do with your story but be considerate when you start to complain and punish your readers because you decide to go ahead re-implement the character customization again. Even though you the writer said you will not do implement it again, no matter how much begging the readers do.

I also feel that It is understandable if the episode or some kind of coding “messes” up any of the customizable characters to the point that the Author has no choice but to re-implement the character customization again at the beginning for the chapter.

All I am saying in this or TL;DR

When you as an author decide to make a story that has the MC and the other important characters as customizable please be considerate of your readers and do not make a separate chapter for customization or punish your readers because you fail to keep your word when it comes to customization and makes the chapter shorter than usual because of that particular reasoning.

Our tickets do not grow on trees and they get used up once you start the next chapter, no matter how short or long it will be…

Thank you for taking the time to read this. I am sorry if my rant came off as to offending to any authors out there… Just this last story of a chapter that I had just recently read just broke the mold for me and I needed to get this off my chest.


#2

Although I’ve never came across a story like that, I agree with you! One ticket is spent on customization while we could use it for something else!


#3

I both agree and disagree. I think that readers also need to be considerate to writers and realise they’re just people. They can be really rude and demanding. For example, I had a reader say “Your chapters are too short. I can’t get into the story. Fix.” just yesterday! It’s completely natural to get frustrated with this kind of ungrateful attitude. We’re only human, after all! At the same time, I understand not punishing all readers because of the vocal minority. I think that character customisations are a problem in general and I understand the frustration of reading a whole chapter dedicated to customisations. Hence the fact that I always give a choice to skip the customisations when I re-implement them throughout the story. It’s a bit of a give-and-take, though. We writers aren’t story monkeys trained to please a reader. This platform is about sharing stories and both the reader and the writer get something out of it!


#4

I also think it’s important to note that you’re investing tickets for the story at large. I know it’s not fair that the tickets are dedicated to customisation predominantly from time to time, but if most of the story is actual good content, surely one chapter like that is okay? It’s not like each chapter is a completely different story. Reading the whole story takes more than one chapter. I don’t mean to sound rude. It’s just a thought


#5

No, you do not sound rude at all. :slight_smile: As I said in my post, I am a writer as well and fans can be nasty towards the writer… I get a few insults here and there with my stories. So I honestly can relate and do agree that readers should be considerate when it comes to story writers. We are all humans, not robots and nowhere near perfect. Some of us write for a hobby and do it for free and others? Not so much.

I did come across some stories that do give the user who is reading it a chance to skip the previous chapter and I honestly love that type of option, some Authors use for us who do not want to do a repeat. As for the whole customization predominantly from time to time? Like in my post, this last story that is now put on hold until the author decides to continue it or not is what made me come onto the episode forums. There were at least Two or three chapters that only involved in you customizing your MC, your best friends, Lover and then another chapter towards the chapter that the writer had stopped on where you are customizing your future kids only. This was a little too much for me and that’s when I decided to come here.

I was already annoyed with one story I read a while back where the author let us re-customize our character and then once you were done, you were given. “Due to a lot of begging for re-customizing the MCs… This chapter will be shorter compared to other chapters”. Patiently waiting for the next episode of this story for at least six months. I can understand where she was getting at but it was irritating how the Author came off with that note. Once in a while, it is fine… but continuing to crater to fans needs after the Author themselves says no and in return punish the ones that just want to read the story it is fustrating.


#6

I am one of those people who had a chapter (first chapter) dedicated to CC, however in my case, my readers know that I use to always hit the old-line limit. I know this isn’t the case for most of authors on the app. Dedicating an episode to CC was the only choice I had until episode increased the line limit a few months ago. Currently, if anyone says they don’t have enough line space lmao they be lying (before it was at 13,000, now it’s at like 45,000 something… CC takes up about 2000-3000 lines). So on the topic of ‘dedicating a chapter to CC’, nowadays, authors really shouldn’t do that. There’s not really an excuse unless you are hitting the new line limit (which would be . . . 15 or so characters?)

On the topic of authors wanting the MC to look a certain way, I never understood this . . . like if the the skin color / hair color doesn’t make an impact, why limit the readers? Like for an art scene, you would probably prefer the characters to look a certain way.

On the topic of re-reading episodes, there is a way so readers don’t have to reread your episodes . . . which I do for all my stories, cause I’ve dropped so many stories which I’ve had to reread chapters. Plus, I worry if I add the choice ‘Would you like to skip this chapter’ nerve racking, cause what if they click the wrong choice x-x


#7

The first chapter is fine for a “CC introduction” only. Episode tends to freeze/crash or randomly cut off on my phone from time to time. So when coming back to episode/that chapter I notice my ticket does not vanish until you get to the “second” chapter for that story. So I am guessing that in each story the first episode is more of a “sample” of what you are getting. Kind of knew about episodes having a limit when it comes to writing, but I did not know that the character creation help created that problem as well. The more you know… :confused:


#8

Oh! This reminds me of something. There is also a way for authors to ‘kick’ the reader to the in-app character creation as well. Which saves time, and line space.


#9

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