We are delighted to introduce Wordslingr Workshops, a completely free, community-led critique group designed to help writers of all skill levels improve their craft.
Getting quality feedback on your writing can be difficult. Your friends and family give their opinions on you, not your creation ("it's nice!", "I liked it!")
Traditionally, authors rely on their peers for good, critical feedback. They did this through writing workshops, where a group of writers would submit their pieces for feedback, and some time later, receive back a marked-up manuscript containing notes and suggestions for the piece.
Wordslingr Workshops recreates that experience online with a tool dedicated to the act of reviewing and critiquing written work. Other online communities have sprung up to do this sort of workshopping in the past, but they have always had to rely on tools whose original purpose was not reviewing, but composing. Wordslingr is the only tool specifically written to duplicate the results of editing with a pen and pencil.
How It Works
Wordslingr works on a point based system. By participating and engaging with the site (primarily by reviewing other author's submissions), you earn points. You spend those points when you post pieces of your own.
The "cost" of posting a piece is whatever the word count is (with a minimum cost of 500 points). So if your flash fiction is 900 words, it will cost you 900 points to post it.
You earn points primarily by reviewing other author's work. The point value for a piece is prominently displayed next to the title. For posting a review you earn 1/3rd of the total word count of the submitted piece. So in our example of a 900 word submission, when you review that piece, you will earn 300 points that you can then use to post a piece of your own.
We use this 1/3rd rule in an effort to balance submissions and reviews. On average, you will need to review three pieces by other authors in order to earn enough points to post a piece of your own of similar lengths. (Of course, if you only review long pieces, and only post short pieces, then that balance can skew, but we think that is ok.)
Striving Toward Quality Reviews
We want the feedback you get on your writing to be of the highest quality possible. This will be an ongoing process of both improving Wordslingr's feature set to ensure great quality feedback, and educating other authors on how to give great feedback. Here are the rules we've set up so far:
Minimum Comment Length
When reviewing someone's piece, you have the opportunity to leave inline comments in the piece as well as overall comments at the end of the piece. The total word count of these comments must exceed the minimum comment length for the piece.
The minimum comment length is calculated based on the length of the piece being reviewed. Shorter pieces require less comments than longer pieces (these values work out to between 150 and 400 words of comments required, depending on the length of the piece.) However, good, thoughtful, feedback will often be longer than this.
The more you engage and use Wordslingr, the more the software trusts you. We measure this trust by lifetime points earned.
In Wordslingr, you have two point totals. One is your Current Point Total, this is the amount of points you currently have to spend (accumulated primarily through reviewing other author's work.) When you post a piece of your own to review, this total goes down.
The second point total we measure is your Lifetime Points Earned, which is essentially counting up all the points you've earned and not subtracting points when you post your own work.
This Lifetime Points Earned measurement defines the privileges you earn in the system.
We really hope you enjoy this system. There is not another workshopping tool like this out there. We will do everything we can do to make this community successful and to make this the best online workshopping experience there can be.
Please visit our community site to leave feedback on the tool, or suggestions to improve it.