unconventional settings: how to get people interested

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unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by fruityloops » Thu 25 Jan 2018, 15:47

so recently I've just learned that a lot of people don't take interest in my setting. Now this is mostly my fault as I tend to not make the most enticing of pitches. even then, we try to say "basically Conan the barbarian meets redwall but the main races are insects, arachnid and crustaceans" after a long post explaining everything. No one comments. I'm not even sure if I should post here in fears people might not even bother posting a comment on their. Even when I talk about people don't quote it to show interest.

so for any of you people who have settings that are out there, please tell me your secrets on how people get so invested in it.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by gestaltist » Thu 25 Jan 2018, 17:00

fruityloops wrote:
Thu 25 Jan 2018, 15:47
so recently I've just learned that a lot of people don't take interest in my setting. Now this is mostly my fault as I tend to not make the most enticing of pitches. even then, we try to say "basically Conan the barbarian meets redwall but the main races are insects, arachnid and crustaceans" after a long post explaining everything. No one comments. I'm not even sure if I should post here in fears people might not even bother posting a comment on their. Even when I talk about people don't quote it to show interest.

so for any of you people who have settings that are out there, please tell me your secrets on how people get so invested in it.
I'm afraid people are more anxious to post their stuff than to read other people's work in general. Ask yourself: how many settings/languages have you read about and commented on on this forum? I feel that the whole value of a forum like this is to see what other people are doing and to draw inspiration from them. Or, for conlangs especially, to get some help in fleshing things out more.

You may not like this answer but what I'm saying is basically that this is not a fanclub - it's a community. So try to treat it as such and you'll find it's very valuable. Once people see you as a community member with interesting comments and ideas, they will be more likely to read something longer written by you. Otherwise you're setting yourself up for failure - unless you're the next Tolkien or something.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by Axiem » Thu 25 Jan 2018, 19:58

gestaltist wrote:
Thu 25 Jan 2018, 17:00
how many settings/languages have you read about and commented on on this forum?
This this this.

The best way to get someone to read your stuff, is to read their stuff and talk to them about it. Especially in a community such as this one. If you're around and talking with people and being a good contributor in that way, then people will be interested in your other stuff.

(I say, though I'm pretty bad about commenting on other people's stuff. But then, I realize that I should hold no expectations on people being interested in mine, so I just don't worry about it)
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by fruityloops » Thu 25 Jan 2018, 22:32

Axiem wrote:
Thu 25 Jan 2018, 19:58
gestaltist wrote:
Thu 25 Jan 2018, 17:00
how many settings/languages have you read about and commented on on this forum?
This this this.

The best way to get someone to read your stuff, is to read their stuff and talk to them about it. Especially in a community such as this one. If you're around and talking with people and being a good contributor in that way, then people will be interested in your other stuff.

(I say, though I'm pretty bad about commenting on other people's stuff. But then, I realize that I should hold no expectations on people being interested in mine, so I just don't worry about it)
I'm mostly here for conworlds not languages. I found both learning and making one a hard task to undertake. I find making worlds far more easier.

I guess I'll but I guess this one post and ruined first impressions for a lot of people.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by shimobaatar » Thu 25 Jan 2018, 23:07

fruityloops wrote:
Thu 25 Jan 2018, 22:32
I'm mostly here for conworlds not languages. I found both learning and making one a hard task to undertake. I find making worlds far more easier.
And that's totally fine. gestaltist and Axiem's points still stand, though.
fruityloops wrote:
Thu 25 Jan 2018, 22:32
I guess I'll but I guess this one post and ruined first impressions for a lot of people.
There seem to be some missing words here, so I'm not entirely sure what you're trying to say, but if you mean that you think making this thread and asking what you've asked has given people a bad first impression of you, that's awfully presumptuous. People aren't going to hold grudges against you for asking an innocent question.

My advice would be to just keep working hard on creating the worlds you want to create, and to try to stop caring so much about whether or not anyone comments. If you put passion and dedication into the stuff you post, it'll show, and that will likely get people's attention. In other words, do it for yourself, not anyone else. Having patience is also very, very important.
gestaltist wrote:
Thu 25 Jan 2018, 17:00
You may not like this answer but what I'm saying is basically that this is not a fanclub - it's a community. So try to treat it as such and you'll find it's very valuable. Once people see you as a community member with interesting comments and ideas, they will be more likely to read something longer written by you. Otherwise you're setting yourself up for failure - unless you're the next Tolkien or something.
I can't [+1] this enough.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by Axiem » Thu 25 Jan 2018, 23:46

fruityloops wrote:
Thu 25 Jan 2018, 22:32
I'm mostly here for conworlds not languages.
Me too! You can read about mine in my signature (and once you create a thread for your conworld, I'd recommend you do the same).

I look forward to seeing you post more about your stuff. And I agree with the other advice: just keep posting and engaging in the community.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by LinguistCat » Thu 25 Jan 2018, 23:54

It might be better, also, to focus on specific details when you post, and if someone is interested they'll ask questions and you can add on with more detail in a longer post. This isn't to say that longer posts aren't good, but it can be intimidating when there's a wall of text about a world we don't know yet. Focus on one species, or one culture, or one type of custom that all your species have. (Even if they go about it differently. Meals would be a good one, almost everyone eats.)
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by Salmoneus » Fri 26 Jan 2018, 00:21

Interacting in the community certainly can't hurt. But to be honest, there's only really One Weird Trick for getting lots of people invested in your conworld:

make it the basis of a multimegamilliondollar international entertainment franchise.

Given a choice, I'd recommend a major HBO TV series or a trilogy of Hollywood blockbusters; even cute little thing on the CW would be a good start, particularly if you can work in a YA dystopian romance angle (there's lots of people deeply invested in the conworlding for The 100, right down to the conlang). Failing that, though, I'd suggest writing a bestselling series of fantasy or SF novels.


Otherwise, I'm afraid that interest will unfortunately be somewhat limited.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by Reyzadren » Fri 26 Jan 2018, 00:30

I don't post anything about my conworld here because I know most people here won't be interested in it. That's normal, it's not just you. People here have very specific interests that do not align with mine. Conversely, I am not interested in other conworlds that are shown here which are considered to be exciting, I think they are boring.

My way around this is to only describe the conworld whenever necessary alongside my conlang for futher explanation. But as you don't have a conlang, I suppose the secret for you and your thread is: Just be yourself, and the community shall find you too.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by shimobaatar » Fri 26 Jan 2018, 01:04

Reyzadren wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 00:30
I don't post anything about my conworld here because I know most people here won't be interested in it.
If I might ask, how do you know for certain?
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by Khemehekis » Fri 26 Jan 2018, 02:07

I thought Fruityloops was talking about the reception that Fruityloops got on a different board, not on this board.

Personally, I find elf-dwarf-and-orc conworlds very boring and never read novels that feature them. Fruityloops' conworld isn't one of them, though, so I might be interested.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by shimobaatar » Fri 26 Jan 2018, 02:16

Khemehekis wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 02:07
Personally, I find elf-dwarf-and-orc conworlds very boring and never read novels that feature them. Fruityloops' conworld isn't one of them, though, so I might be interested.
I don't mean to imply that you were saying otherwise, but I've actually never seen a Tolkien-esque conworld like that on here.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by Axiem » Fri 26 Jan 2018, 05:44

shimobaatar wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 02:16
I've actually never seen a Tolkien-esque conworld like that on here.
My Mto draws a lot of inspiration from D&D-esque worlds like Golarion and Greyhawk, which in turn draw inspiration from Tolkein. Though I don't have things like elves, dwarves, or orcs, there's still a pseudo-medieval (though pushing the border into Enlightenment/steampunk-ish) feel to it.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by Reyzadren » Fri 26 Jan 2018, 23:41

shimobaatar wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 01:04
Reyzadren wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 00:30
I don't post anything about my conworld here because I know most people here won't be interested in it.
If I might ask, how do you know for certain?
People here have very specific interests that do not align with mine. Upon browsing the forum, one can see other members' comments about what they like in other threads, as well as what they don't like.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by Axiem » Sat 27 Jan 2018, 02:14

Reyzadren wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 23:41
People here have very specific interests that do not align with mine. Upon browsing the forum, one can see other members' comments about what they like in other threads, as well as what they don't like.
Perhaps the people who would be interested in what you post simply do not comment in other threads.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by elemtilas » Sat 27 Jan 2018, 03:14

Reyzadren wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 23:41
shimobaatar wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 01:04
Reyzadren wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 00:30
I don't post anything about my conworld here because I know most people here won't be interested in it.
If I might ask, how do you know for certain?
People here have very specific interests that do not align with mine. Upon browsing the forum, one can see other members' comments about what they like in other threads, as well as what they don't like.
This is needlessly presumptuous, as well as insulting to us. Who the hell are you to tell me what I'm interested in simply you've browsed this forum and think you know everything about everyone? Also, just because you think everyone elses' work here is boring and beneath your notice doesn't mean everyone else here will find your work boring and pointless.

On the other hand, if that's the kind of friendly attitude you bring into a community, then perhaps keeping it to yourself is the best plan.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by shimobaatar » Sat 27 Jan 2018, 03:21

elemtilas wrote:
Sat 27 Jan 2018, 03:14
Reyzadren wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 23:41
shimobaatar wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 01:04
Reyzadren wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 00:30
I don't post anything about my conworld here because I know most people here won't be interested in it.
If I might ask, how do you know for certain?
People here have very specific interests that do not align with mine. Upon browsing the forum, one can see other members' comments about what they like in other threads, as well as what they don't like.
This is needlessly presumptuous, as well as insulting to us. Who the hell are you to tell me what I'm interested in simply you've browsed this forum and think you know everything about everyone? Also, just because you think everyone elses' work here is boring and beneath your notice doesn't mean everyone else here will find your work boring and pointless.

On the other hand, if that's the kind of friendly attitude you bring into a community, then perhaps keeping it to yourself is the best plan.
[+1]

I was trying to think of a way to put it more lightly, but yeah, this is basically what I was thinking.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by Khemehekis » Sat 27 Jan 2018, 03:37

You know, Fruityloops, I've tried to get people on here to join the collaborative science-fiction story Inner Bruise and its wiki, but after more than a year, no one here has joined. I know how you feel. Unfortunately, I don't have a solution to get people more interested.

You say your sapient life-forms are based on different kinds of arthropod lineages. That would be of interest to me, as the Lehola Galaxy (my galaxy) includes planets with sapients based on cetaceans, parrots, otters, dinosaurs, and other taxa that never attained sapience on Earth. (They also include phyla of animals that never evolved on Earth). I imagine insectoids and sapient crustaceans as looking different from the pixieish girls in your drawings, though.
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by Salmoneus » Sat 27 Jan 2018, 19:32

shimobaatar wrote:
Sat 27 Jan 2018, 03:21
elemtilas wrote:
Sat 27 Jan 2018, 03:14
Reyzadren wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 23:41
shimobaatar wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 01:04
Reyzadren wrote:
Fri 26 Jan 2018, 00:30
I don't post anything about my conworld here because I know most people here won't be interested in it.
If I might ask, how do you know for certain?
People here have very specific interests that do not align with mine. Upon browsing the forum, one can see other members' comments about what they like in other threads, as well as what they don't like.
This is needlessly presumptuous, as well as insulting to us. Who the hell are you to tell me what I'm interested in simply you've browsed this forum and think you know everything about everyone? Also, just because you think everyone elses' work here is boring and beneath your notice doesn't mean everyone else here will find your work boring and pointless.

On the other hand, if that's the kind of friendly attitude you bring into a community, then perhaps keeping it to yourself is the best plan.
[+1]

I was trying to think of a way to put it more lightly, but yeah, this is basically what I was thinking.
Because it's Reyzadren's job to show off his private work for your amusement, so you can decide whether to embarassingly ignore him or not? Well, that's one way to put it, I guess.

If someone you're not interested in doesn't ask you out on a date, do you accost them and go "how dare you deprive me of the chance to go on a date with you, just because you assume, merely on the basis of my comments about my previous romantic interests and the disparaging things I've said and/or lack of interest I've shown in people like you before, that I'm not interested in you? What, you think you're a thinking person capable of recognising patterns and making your own decisions for yourself? Hardly! It's my right to choose to publically reject you!" ?

Tip: if people don't feel comfortable sharing personal things with you because of how they've seen you act in the past, maybe they're not the one who should be feeling guilty? If you really want people to share with you, you can encourage them, but it's not really your place to pressure them to do so if they don't want to; nor are you really in a position to be offended if decline your invitation. You don't own their imaginations. And if they don't find you welcoming, you're in no position to try to make them feel guilty about failing to invite you to interact with you. If people keep finding you unfriendly or disinterested, that's maybe something you should work on yourself, rather than blaming people who feel hurt or ignored.


Now don't get me wrong: you DO have a right to be disinterested, of course. You can reject whomever you choose. We all do. Most of us are disinterested in most of what most of us do. And it's unfortunate that as a result of us failing to show sufficient interest, and failing to communicate our interests clearly enough, that might result in other people not choosing to show us things that we actually WOULD be interested in. But that's not their fault. If someone's not attracted to you - or, in this case, attracted to your conworld feedback - that's not something they should feel guilty about, or that you should insult them about. If you want them to see you differently, behave differently, don't just berate them for failing to recognise your right to choose whether or not to be interested in them... (or, if like most of us you don't want to put the effort in to make everyone want to confide in you, just accept that not everybody will confide in you).

[Not that I personally have any problem with you, mind. Which is why I'm surprised by your post. Elemtilas, obviously, I expect this sort of thing from, but you seem a reasonably pleasant and non-narcissistic person. Which is why I'm hoping this might encourage you to think about your reaction there and see how it might appear from the receiving end...]
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Re: unconventional settings: how to get people interested

Post by shimobaatar » Sat 27 Jan 2018, 21:38

I definitely should have taken the time to word my response to Reyzadren better, instead of just taking the easy route by [+1]-ing the comment that I did.
Salmoneus wrote:
Sat 27 Jan 2018, 19:32
Because it's Reyzadren's job to show off his private work for your amusement […]?
I've also noticed this kind of attitude on the board, and I find it very off-putting, so I'm frankly mortified that I came across that way.

It's not at all my intention to argue that I have nothing to apologize for, but I would like to take the time, like I should have before, to properly explain myself.
Salmoneus wrote:
Sat 27 Jan 2018, 19:32
If someone you're not interested in doesn't ask you out on a date, do you accost them and go "how dare you deprive me of the chance to go on a date with you, just because you assume, merely on the basis of my comments about my previous romantic interests and the disparaging things I've said and/or lack of interest I've shown in people like you before, that I'm not interested in you? What, you think you're a thinking person capable of recognising patterns and making your own decisions for yourself? Hardly! It's my right to choose to publically reject you!" ?
I will say, however, that I don't think this is a fair analogy, because I feel that comparing this kind of thing to pressuring someone into sharing their conworld downplays the scary reality of dating violence and similar phenomena. I'm very lucky to have never experienced this myself, but friends of mine unfortunately have been faced with responses in the same ballpark as this quote. Obviously, this wasn't your intention, but hopefully I've made it clear why this paragraph didn't sit right with me.

Ah, never mind. You address this more directly in your second to last paragraph:
Salmoneus wrote:
Sat 27 Jan 2018, 19:32
Now don't get me wrong: you DO have a right to be disinterested, of course. You can reject whomever you choose. […] But that's not their fault. If someone's not attracted to you - or, in this case, attracted to your conworld feedback - that's not something they should feel guilty about, or that you should insult them about.
My apologies.

Anyway:
Salmoneus wrote:
Sat 27 Jan 2018, 19:32
Because it's Reyzadren's job to show off his private work for your amusement, so you can decide whether to embarassingly ignore him or not? Well, that's one way to put it, I guess.
I agree. No one should ever feel pressured into sharing anything they'd rather keep to themselves, especially not in a setting like this. No board member owes any of the rest of us anything.

It seems like we interpreted Reyzadren's statements very differently. I didn't get the sense of "I'd prefer to keep what I've been working on to myself, at least for now". Instead, it seemed like they were saying "I'd love to share my conworld, but I can tell without even asking that every single one of you plebs wouldn't be interested in something so exciting… not that there's anything wrong with that". This seemed very presumptuous, and I felt rather insulted, but looking back now that I've cooled off, I still can't say I see the comments the way you did, but I've realized I was absolutely being presumptuous myself. Maybe there was something about the wording of Reyzadren's posts that subconsciously reminded me of examples of extreme snootiness directed at myself and others elsewhere on the internet that set off this response in me, or something like that, but that doesn't really matter. In the end, I still assumed the worst, and that my first reading of the comments in question was correct.

I was going to respond to Reyzadren's second post by trying to politely encourage them to put some more faith in the community instead of assuming they could deduce everyone's interests and to consider sharing their conworld, especially since they've already shared information about their conlang. Instead, I decided to prioritize saving myself time and effort by agreeing with the post I [+1]-ed, seemingly thinking that simply adding a line about not agreeing with the tone would make it OK. That was incredibly stupid and lazy of me, and I'm very sorry. I could say something like "I had a long day yesterday and I was tired and agitated when I posted that", and that wouldn't be lying, but that also wouldn't make it alright. I should have known better. Also, I'm aware of how essentially meaningless saying "I was going to try responding politely" is, but it's the truth, not that I expect anyone to believe it. It's at least what I really wish I had done.

As a side note, I find your inclusion of the word "embarrassingly" very interesting. For a while now, I've gotten the sense that most other board members have very different reactions to receiving, or not receiving, comments on their work. However, I keep forgetting that and assuming everyone else reacts the same way I do, and it looks like that forgetfulness has finally caused, or at least contributed to, a misunderstanding like this one.
Salmoneus wrote:
Sat 27 Jan 2018, 19:32
Tip: if people don't feel comfortable sharing personal things with you because of how they've seen you act in the past, maybe they're not the one who should be feeling guilty? If you really want people to share with you, you can encourage them, but it's not really your place to pressure them to do so if they don't want to; nor are you really in a position to be offended if decline your invitation. You don't own their imaginations. And if they don't find you welcoming, you're in no position to try to make them feel guilty about failing to invite you to interact with you. If people keep finding you unfriendly or disinterested, that's maybe something you should work on yourself, rather than blaming people who feel hurt or ignored.
I wholeheartedly agree with this. You're articulating thoughts I've had in the past far better than I could have. Of course the people being pressured shouldn't feel guilty, and of course it's not our place to pressure them and then be offended if they say no. Of course we don't own their imaginations.

I cannot overstate how ashamed I am to think that I may have been seen as unwelcoming and unfriendly, or as someone who pressures people into sharing things they're not comfortable sharing, and guilting them if they refuse. I sincerely hope "people don't feel comfortable sharing personal things with (me) because of how they've seen (me) act in the past". I'm probably going to end up using this word and its synonyms a lot in this response, but I really am mortified to think that that's how people have seen my attempts to do the exact opposite. Knowing this, even the gentler response I would have ideally given probably would have been far too pushy.

If someone were really acting with such a pretentious attitude, like in my misinterpretation of the comments in question, I do personally think that's something that other people have a right to be offended by, but again, looking back, I'm almost certain I completely misinterpreted Reyzadren's comments. My response was completely undeserved.
Salmoneus wrote:
Sat 27 Jan 2018, 19:32
Now don't get me wrong: you DO have a right to be disinterested, of course. You can reject whomever you choose. We all do. Most of us are disinterested in most of what most of us do. And it's unfortunate that as a result of us failing to show sufficient interest, and failing to communicate our interests clearly enough, that might result in other people not choosing to show us things that we actually WOULD be interested in. But that's not their fault. If someone's not attracted to you - or, in this case, attracted to your conworld feedback - that's not something they should feel guilty about, or that you should insult them about. If you want them to see you differently, behave differently, don't just berate them for failing to recognise your right to choose whether or not to be interested in them... (or, if like most of us you don't want to put the effort in to make everyone want to confide in you, just accept that not everybody will confide in you).
Once again, I totally agree, but I guess I've been doing an awful job conveying how I really feel.

I think this is another instance of the fact that I respond differently to getting, or not getting, feedback than most people contributing to the misunderstanding. That might also be why I'm admittedly not 100% certain what you're trying to say here in this paragraph. Anyway, for instance, my first though in instances of people bumping their own threads, or asking how to get people interested in their work, or something like that, tends to be along the lines of asking "what's so bad about not getting any comments", which probably seems very strange to most of you.

Long story short, I thought Reyzadren was insulting all of us, saying that their work is above us, so I wanted to encourage them to give us a chance, because I was sure people would be interested in whatever they have to post, which would hopefully make them realize that we're not stupid. Instead, I took the easy way out by agreeing with a post written in a tone that, from the beginning, didn't sit well with me. To top it all off, it looks like I was almost certainly misreading Reyzadren's posts from the start.
Salmoneus wrote:
Sat 27 Jan 2018, 19:32
[Not that I personally have any problem with you, mind. Which is why I'm surprised by your post. Elemtilas, obviously, I expect this sort of thing from, but you seem a reasonably pleasant and non-narcissistic person. Which is why I'm hoping this might encourage you to think about your reaction there and see how it might appear from the receiving end...]
I hope there aren't any hard feelings between us, or between Reyzadren and I, or between myself and anyone who has been upset by the way I've apparently been coming off, but I can understand if there are.

To conclude, I'm completely mortified (there's that word again) by what's happened here, and I sincerely apologize to Reyzadren, to you, and to everyone who has been hurt or put off by the way I've come off. I assumed the worst and ran with it, not taking the time to go back over the comments that started all this, and on top of that, I idiotically decided to respond by lazily agreeing with a statement I wouldn't have made myself, or at least I'd like to think I wouldn't have, instead of taking even a little bit of time to put even a little bit of thought into a full response of my own.

I think I'll be stepping back from the non-game threads of the board, even more so, if that's even possible, than I have already because of college, to reevaluate how I've been acting and coming across online. As troubling, and frankly unexpected, as this news is, I appreciate you pointing this out to me.

Oh, and one final apology for derailing this thread.
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