Ok so I still haven't worked out exactly how to respond to multiple people in the same post, so it'll have to come in a succession of responses, if anyone of the mods wants to hack them up and put them together, feel free.
Mind you that two of the articles are from the runners-up of the contest recently held (they did not win for obvious reasons)... It did not see a whole lot of submissions, and I do believe that these articles did not get the editors attention as much as the articles did from the panel's writers, but yeah... no excuse really...
I can only comment on your comment on my own article (the 4th), and I did indeed not spot the mistake of the word literally... Understand that I type in frenzies when I get the inspiration to, and stuff like this slips through... As for the mincing mistake, I honestly thought it meant the exact opposite of what I just found in the dictionary...
As for the goat reference; Go visit the mountain camp in-game, you then might make more sense of the supposed confusion of the narrator
Finally; I'm just trying to tell the story, so please comment on that... I you still want, feel free to peel minuscule or otherwise insignificant things apart if you like, but it does not make you a person I'd gladly take criticism from... Do not judge the Times as a whole; we are a panel of collegues, not a team... Judge the individual writer and/or editor on his individual articles, stories and/or editing skills... Painting us all with the same brush by calling the Times an elephants graveyard only works if you think ALL articles/writers/editors are crap...
Well, speaking purely for myself, I wasn't even aware that there was a writing contest... I doubt I'd've entered the competition even if I did, but it might explain why there were so few submissions.
As a disclaimer to all future comments in this topic, I should let you know that my first post was written at the end of a 20 hour day so I was probably less tolerant than usual. Hence, in this case, the flippant comment about the goat!
I would also like to point out that I wasn't describing the current Times as an elephant graveyard, merely pointing out that the editorial panel should be careful to avoid this becoming the case. This comment was largely borne of the fact that in many of the recent Times feedback threads there has been an incredible amount of criticism for the quality of grammar/editing. In the past it hasn't really bothered me, in spite of regular criticism, but this week it did impact on my enjoyment (possibly owing in part to the lateness of the hour as well) hence being so brutal in my criticism.
Storm, with specific regard to your article, I'm afraid I didn't enjoy it as much as I have some of your other posts. I wouldn't say it was the best fictional article I've read on here either, the impression I got being that there was simply too much information in the length of article that you had. Whilst I appreciated the fact that you made an effort to explain the context of the story within the fremennik lifestyle, rather than just making an abstract collection of characters made fremennik solely by geography, it often broke up the natural flow of the story. Also, you really must be very careful with your use of tenses to ensure that if it changes, it still makes sense in the context. That flaw alone damaged the retelling of the story significantly (at least in my view), which is a shame given it shows promise as a very interesting fictional article.
Oh and as for the "literally" comment, I never really had much of a problem with the phrase until I read the aforementioned commentary on the use of the word. It's actually quite entertaining, if you listen out for all the inappropriate occasions when people use the word, as it is used almost exclusively to comment on something that in all probability could not or did not happen.
Dare I ask, how is it possible to both mince one's words, yet argue ferociously?
Basically its when the conversation devolves into mixed up words and angry grunting, generally limited to barbarians and dwarves
On a more serious note waheera, If you have the power to fix something that you care about you have two options, work to fix it or stop caring. Talk to mirror or Racheya about becoming an editor, I know I'd be glad to have you.
Haha, thanks Emerson, nice riposte!
As for becoming an editor, what does it entail? Sad fact of the matter is that I would probably find it very difficult to commit the time I would find myself wanting to give to the project... Still, if anyone wants to fill me in on what would be expected of the post then I might be able to help out a bit, that is if you were being serious!
Waheera, your comment about the direction of the times bugs me.
Maybe assuming you have the right to pass judgement on a group of volunteers makes you feel powerful. Or maybe you truly care about the direction of the times.
Either way, understand that it's insulting to hear that the products of our time and creativity are crap.
Understand also, that as volunteers, the editorial team generally has no formal skills.
I read alot. I don't study english, I couldn't define a preposition, and most days I'd probably mix up similies and metaphors. I edit by reading through, usually only once, and changing things to how I think it should read. Sometimes at 4am on Monday morning.
Now you managed to pick up a couple of (what seem to me) trivial errors I missed. I'm sure they didn't actually destroy the reading experience as much as that last post implies. If they did, well.. you should probably get that OCD looked at.
You seem like an intelligent guy. I'd be happy to hear what mistakes I missed in the second article. Try and remember for the future that it's not hard to let us know about them without insulting the Times crew.
As I said earlier, I was making my first comments at a time when I was probably at my least tolerant. I think the times is a fine institution within Tip.It, but of course for that to continue it must not fall short of the high standards set by its authors and editors over the years.
I realise it can be difficult to accept blunt criticism, but I thought it was probably the best way to elicit a response! I wasn't trying to say that any of the authors or editors were "crap" as such, but there were several mistakes in each article that stuck out to me in my sleep-deprived state.
Re-reading, the 2nd article in fact has only a couple of errors - look for a couple of extraneous words and you should know how to fix it - so I was probably reacting vociferously based on general frustration at the articles this week.
Rest assured I don't take any pleasure in insulting other people, their intelligence, or in this case their ability to write. Apologies to all those that it seems I've offended.
I have to admit I got a wee bit annoyed by that, considering I had revised that article three times on my own, followed by two other revisions by two other people. We work hard to write these articles, and honestly, comments like that don't encourage us.
The second article is similarly littered with schoolboy errors that make an otherwise interesting new topic frustrating to read.
Sorry I'm not an English major and that I don't get out the Bedford Handbook every time I write an article.
Apologies, please read my other responses for what will hopefully be some explanation of my strong criticism last night...! Much of what I said WAS designed to provoke a reaction, but by no means was it intended to belittle the efforts of the Times team.