feedme_back (feedme_back) wrote in feedme_merlin,
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feedme_merlin

Feedback request post

The goal of this community to provide a space where members of the Merlin fandom can request and receive honest, anonymous feedback on their fanworks. Creators of all kinds are welcome - while we expect mainly authors and artists, vidders and creators of any other fanworks are equally welcome. Henceforth, "author" should be taken to refer to any individual requesting feedback in this community, including artists, vidders, knitters of dragon socks, etc.

The index post has a listing of all participating authors, in alphabetical order by username, and will be updated as often as possible.

Guidelines for authors:
1. To request feedback on any and all of your Merlin fanworks, simply comment on this post, logged in, with your username. It is recommended (though not required) that you include a link to the main repository for your fanworks, such as an art journal, a fic tag at your personal journal, your personal tag at a community, or an off-lj archive.
2. To request feedback on a particular work or works only, comment on this post, logged in, with your username and a link to the work or works for which you are requesting feedback.
3. You are of course welcome to withdraw at any time. If you no longer wish to participate, you can delete your original comment or ask the mod to freeze replies.
4. The point of this community is to solicit honest feedback, with the understanding that such feedback may not always be positive. However, bashing and personal attacks will not be tolerated. If you receive any inappropriate comments which you would like deleted or screened, please contact the mod here.
5. Post a link to your thread in your own journal if you like, but DO NOT pimp in communities without the express permission of the moderators.

Guidelines for commenters:
1. BE POLITE. This community is for constructive criticism, not bashing. For fic, DO discuss spelling and grammar, plot, and characterisation. DO NOT criticise an author for writing a pairing you don't like.
2. If an author requests feedback only on certain works, limit your discussion to those works.
3. Limit your comments to discussion of the author's Merlin-related creative output. Do not bring up personal matters or issues relating to other fandoms.
4. Spam, personal attacks, and any other violations of the rules will be deleted at the mod's discretion.
5. Pay attention to which 'reply' link you use. If you accidentally reply to the main post rather than an author's thread, repost your comment in the appropriate place and the mod will delete the duplicate.
6. IP logging is off, and anonymous commenting is encouraged, though you may also comment logged-in if you choose.

General rules:
1. Play nice!
2. Questions and suggestions go here.
3. Report violations of the rules here.
4. Index of participants is here.
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Just to get the party started, here's a sample comment. feedme_back, with no fic to link to since this is a puppet account.
And this isn't nervewracking at all. >_>
kathkin. All my Merlin fic is here.

Anonymous

July 12 2009, 19:01:13 UTC 7 years ago

You do a really good job with AUs that feel like fully crafted worlds rather than just familiar characters against the barest of backdrops. I always appreciate the fact that make the world feel real, and give time to the supporting characters as well.
I've had a chance to go through some of your earlier fics and I think my main comment would be about spacing (using 'Enter' twice instead of once), just to make things simpler to read and more spaced out.

Your characterization in the earlier ones, especially of Nimueh, felt slightly off in my opinion, but I think finding the characters comes with a few fics. I will comment as I make my way through. As well, I distinctly remember reading Ariel and utterly falling in love with it. It was a fantastic and unique idea.

kathkin

7 years ago

Anonymous

July 13 2009, 07:17:06 UTC 7 years ago

I haven't read all of your work, but in those that I did read I've noticed a tendency to bow the characters to the plot instead of the other way around. I found it particularly noticeable in "Don't Say It", which I understand was a story whose subject matter bothered you a lot. It's not unusual to do this - I've seen comments like that from many writers ("Sometimes I have to make them do OOC things to work with the plot" as an example) and as such it may appear common practice.

It might be holding you back as a writer. The plot isn't the puppet master, you are. Try to let the characters speak to you somehow - there are probably writing exercises on the net somewhere that can help get more in tune with what the characters are instead of what the plot requires. And don't worry too much, even professional writers (especially in TV and movies) are doing this.

kathkin

7 years ago

Anonymous

7 years ago

kathkin

7 years ago

Ok, I'll bite. srin. There's a list of my fic here.

Anonymous

July 12 2009, 18:46:22 UTC 7 years ago

Just glancing down your list, I can see a whole load of fics I really liked. : D *goes to read Force of Nature again*
I'll admit, though, that I've never thought of you as one of my favorite writers. But that might be more because your fics are so different from each other (so I don't tend to link them in my mind) than anything else. And that is a good thing. : )

srin

7 years ago

briar_pipe

7 years ago

srin

7 years ago

Please examine this patient.

Anonymous

July 13 2009, 03:59:06 UTC 7 years ago

I really like that story. The research and attention to detail in the setting really shows. It's a very unique AU but I think it fits well for the characters, and I like the way it develops slowly in terms of what you show us about Arturo's thoughts and feelings. The one thing I might suggest is a little bit more build-up in terms of the romantic element. By the end, I had no trouble believing that Arturo and Merlin really cared about each other, or that Arturo would choose to stay there - that aspect worked wonderfully. But it would have been nice to have a hint of the physical attraction earlier on, particularly as it's something that Arturo as a Catholic would probably struggle with a bit? I didn't have a real problem with it, because let's face it, it's Merlin and Arthur, you don't need to persuade me that they're Totally In Love - just something to keep in mind for future works.

mediumsizedevil

7 years ago

mithrel Fic here, vids here,

Anonymous

July 13 2009, 04:38:35 UTC 7 years ago

I can't say that I really like or dislike any of your fic. I think it feels a bit ... generic? I don't mean that you're ripping off anyone else's work, nothing like that, it's just that most of the plots and themes strike me as things I've read elsewhere before, and while there's nothing wrong with putting your own spin on familiar territory, I guess I just feel like there isn't anything really unique that makes your versions stand out.

I don't have any complaints about your writing itself or your characterisation, so what I'd recommend is just trying to flesh out your stories a bit more. Try to focus on showing rather than telling, maybe work in some more exploration of the characters' thoughts, or more detailed descriptions of the settings, characters' expressions and actions, etc., that sort of thing. You use a lot of dialogue to move the action along and there's nothing wrong with that, but some more descriptive narration might help to make your stories a bit more memorable.
Art and ficlets here

Anonymous

July 14 2009, 05:02:34 UTC 7 years ago

I love your stuff. The fic is understated but in a very effective way. That idea that the Arthur & Merlin we know now aren't the first ones is brilliant. I really enjoyed that fic, and the art that goes with it is lovely. And I don't have words enough to tell you how much I adore The Pendragons. Everything about it. The coloured version yue_ix did is lovely but I'm just as much a fan of your original - the stories you can see glimpses of behind the posing, and the composition of the whole thing, and the likenesses are really quite impressive too.

xenakis_

7 years ago

Anonymous

July 15 2009, 14:36:36 UTC 7 years ago

Your imagination is what astounds me. "Such a Vast Multitude" is truly one of my favourite stories in this fandom and the art accompanying it is amazing. I much prefer it to your foursome art--there's something about the stark b&w and shadows that really fits the story, and that you execute really well. I hope you do more in this style.

xenakis_

7 years ago

Your art so far has a very free-hand feel to it, and strong, definite shadows that create an interesting duality for a distinctive contrasting finish.

One strong point of your drawings there is you use sharp observation to draw as much realism from different resources as possible, making your drawing very lively. However, you also sometimes rely too much on these references and forget some transition between two different ones used for a single elements.

For instance, in Such a Vast Multitude piece, every line is of the same thickness and gesture but for those making Merlin's face, which makes it feel slightly out of place. Since reworking on a single detail will inevitably do this half-erased-half-redone strokes, perhaps you could take to always 'ink' over anything more worked on than the rest, or even just only ever do the final strokes once everything is sketched for, so that all is perfectly unified. This could also help bring together a background and characters if you ever have trouble with it; yet so far the coloring takes care of this very well. It is, as a slightly aside, extremely refreshing and good that you take the time and care to make a background to your pieces, however simple it is. They add a great architectural and time context to your works.

Another way this can be seen is by some details missing - sometimes some lines are incomplete, some bolts and ties are missing, or any of these little, smallest details that proves this character has lived in that world, used those objects for something specific to them. That can be anything from the way they altered their clothes (in the Alexander pic, could Arthur have removed the left shoulder side of his armor? Or could his have shown some tear and wear whereas Merlin's would have been cleaner since he'd be further back in battles? In the Pendragons one, especially for Gwen, you relied a lot on the reference you chose - which was well-chosen - but you didn't personalize it to her. For instance, maybe she could have had a bigger shield, because she wants to protect people, or more metalwork and armor on her since she knows and owns some.)

Nevertheless, I really like that you share your process and behind-the-scenes on your journal. All your pieces have a meaning, a story, which makes a strong impression on us and doesn't leave our mind long after we've closed the window. They all fantastically evocative and the care you put into choosing and placing all elements in them shows in the amazing results. You show thirst for diversity in theme and style which makes each piece such an unexpected surprise. They are all really fun and beautiful.
yue_ix, fanarts are here
(As I haven't tried to publicly improve my writing yet, please do not comment on fics for now if you find them. Thank you!)

Anonymous

July 14 2009, 05:07:21 UTC 7 years ago

So much love. The chibi-type stuff isn't my personal cup of tea, but they are very cute and I love your colouring. I really love your colouring on everything, actually - the piece with Merlin and the dragon, and the one with Arthur and the frog, have absolutely gorgeous palettes. They're just so pretty.

And, god, the black & white stuff? I don't even know, I just adore it that much. The moodiness and the composition and the really intriguing scenes you portray - it's all just brilliant. I don't know enough about art to give real legitimate criticism, but I just wanted to tell you how much I like it all.

yue_ix

7 years ago

Anonymous

7 years ago

yue_ix

7 years ago

yue_ix

7 years ago

briar_pipe

7 years ago

yue_ix

7 years ago

briar_pipe

7 years ago

yue_ix

7 years ago

Anonymous

7 years ago

yue_ix

7 years ago

Anonymous

7 years ago

yue_ix

7 years ago

Okay, emei. All my fic can be found here. Shoot.

Anonymous

July 21 2009, 05:16:19 UTC 7 years ago

I adore your stuff. Each of your AUs is a wonderful, fully-crafted world, and they're poignant and engaging and leave me wanting more even though they're also entirely satisfying as they are. Your Shakespearean heroine!Merlin is my absolute favourite gender-bender in the fandom - it's awesome as a story on its own, and as a twist on canon, and as an adaptation of that Shakespearean trope.

I also really love the fact that the girls get to do their own thing in your stories even when the focus is on Merlin and Arthur.

Really, all I can say is that I hope you'll continue to write for this fandom.

emei

7 years ago

WAY TOO COOL

emei

7 years ago

Anonymous

7 years ago

emei

7 years ago

I'm working on some stuff, and I'd really appreciate feedback on a part that I actually have mostly finished. Here. Thanks!
Ooh, interesting. I'd love some honest feedback on my Merlin fanart, to help me get my inspiration and enthusiasm back.

Anonymous

October 6 2009, 12:52:23 UTC 7 years ago

I really love your work. The colouring is beautiful and your Merlin and Arthur always feel so vivid and real. I think my favourite is your girl!Arthur piece because it's just so incredibly sexy (and I love girl!Athur's gorgeous outfit!). I hope you continue to produce art in this fandom because you're very talented and I enjoy your work a lot.

lizardspots

7 years ago

Anonymous

7 years ago

Deleted comment

:) Girl, your art is what got me into this fandom. IT IS AMAZING.
I'm sure I've told you think. Thousands of times. Sadly though, it may have just been in my head. *is ashamed*

What I love most is that you not only do such a lovely job, but also take the time to colour in and shade and add all sorts of lovely effects to the art so it looks very realistic. :) THAT'S what I love most about your art. :)

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