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I've been pondering the rating system, and it seems like much of the time the best word I can use to describe a story is 'undistinguished.' The story isn't bad, or a trainwreck, or any over the other negative adjectives, but there's nothing special about it, either. The writer didn't create enough background, write in enough detail, or didn't have the inspiration to make an interesting piece. Yet the writing isn't bad. Still, I can't honestly give the story any one of the positive adjectives, either. So I don't bother to rate the story at all, and I suspect a ton of other readers pass it by as well. Thus the author gets no feedback, and never knows what anyone thinks about the work.

Therefore, there seems to be a real need for couple of value-neutral ratings (meaning you can rate the story, but it doesn't get a positive or negative number at all, just a zero.) 'Undistinguished' is not as harsh as boring or trainwreck, and just fits many stories better. Also, I think a rating of 'promising but needs work' (possibly shortened to just 'promising') also would work well for a slightly more positive value-neutral rating. It really help authors who want to improve, because it's difficult to determine what's wrong from a blank silence.

One other point. It would be nice to add 'bad premise' or 'bad idea' (euphemism for a silly notion to make a story out of) to the negative adjectives. Some stories trigger the groan reflex instead of the gag reflex, so trainwreck isn't accurate, but I certainly wasn't bored, either, and none of the other negative adjectives are even close to being accurate.

Rous Bueno suerte.

Ithilwen When I find a story like that, I don't leave a rating, regardless of whether or not I leave a review.

I'd be shy about "bad premise." I've seen some really stupid premises turn out to be amazing stories. I find that the best netwriters are the ones who take stupid or overused premises and make them into great 'fics. The first Underworld movie jumps to mind.

Buena suerte a Ud.
Forge Hay un partido en mis pantalones esta noche
Ithilwen Uh, Forge? "Partido" means "split apart." As pants are supposed to have two legs that are connected at one end and not the other, I will assume that all is well.
Forge "Partido" also means party.
Rous The only problem is that 'partido' refers to a political party. So, unless you are hosting the Democratic National Party in there (and they would be the only one interested, lol) then 'fiesta' is more apropo. Still, it is an intriguing thought.
Forge That's exactly my point. We all know Bill's and Monica's reputation.

I can't believe I just said that. I need to purge my brain.
Rous See, then you used it correctly. And, you have the DNP in your pants? Must be crowded. Oh, well, better you than me. I would have the RNP, and we know that nothing would be going on. LOL
Ithilwen Whatever else one might say about Republicans, they do tend to be delightfully discreet about their fluid transfers. When will the media learn that there are people who actually don't care with whom Paris Hilton is canoodling this week?

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