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Forums > RP Discussion > diminishing returns

hi all. now i love rping and whatnot, but i cant help but feel im just not good enough for some things. i wont do "literate" or paragraph rps for fear of not being up to snuff, and not delivering long enough replies. i can a write a long starter no problem, but when it comes to responses, i have the hardest time making anything beyond a paragraph if im not feeling inspired enough. like, its weird. i can make long stories and stupid amounts of character lore when im by myself, but get another person or a few in the equation and its suddenly dry. i don't know why, but it becomes such a chore to write out a reply, and requires so much focus and thinking in order to get out something of expected minimum length, it just becomes tedious to do for me. i don't get it. does anyone else feel the same way? is this normal?

what can i do to be better at writing paragraghs? should i just go down to the molecule and cells just so i can write filler so that its an "acceptable length"? im missing out on so much because i dont think i can do it, or ied let people down. i might also mention that i have a form of high functioning autism, so i dont know if thats the cause of my problems or not.

I don't like the phrase "literate" and especially the implication that others are therefore "illiterate," but that aside...

Some are choosy about length, but not all. My own standard is actually a few sentences to a couple small paragraphs (although longer commonly crops up when I have more to go over). Those who expect longer will usually give more to respond to and a little bit of weird timing comes into play, so instead of, say, a conversation where characters each take turns saying a couple sentences at a time, there might be something like 3 separate statements with thoughts and actions in between, and it's expected that the response will functional similarly, pretending that things are flowing more realistically instead of following those 3 separate statements with only a single respond statement.

Example if desired
Basically, something like...

First poster
"It's such a lovely day," Firstchar announced.

It really was. The sun was shining and the sky was blue, and lots of other pretty stuff, yay.

Firstchar looked at Secondchar and smiled. They asked, "So what are your plans for today?"

Suddenly an NPC ran in, huffing and puffing because running is hard.

"What's going on?" Firstchar asked in shock.

"Some army is invading!" the NPC announced.

Second poster
Secondchar looked out the window. Yes, it was a fine day indeed, but there were more important things at hand.

"We need to discuss plans, actually," Secondchar told Firstchar. "I've heard-"

That was when the NPC came running in. The announcement prompted Secondchar to rise to their feet.

"Not already!" they exclaimed, then looked at Firstchar. "This is what I was talking about! I had been hearing rumors, and now it is happening!"

Elements of those two posts are actually happening concurrently. I'll try combining them based on time, with the first post in grey and the second post in brown.

"It's such a lovely day," Firstchar announced.

It really was. The sun was shining and the sky was blue, and lots of other pretty stuff, yay.
Secondchar looked out the window. Yes, it was a fine day indeed, but there were more important things at hand.

Firstchar looked at Secondchar and smiled. They asked, "So what are your plans for today?"

"We need to discuss plans, actually," Secondchar told Firstchar. "I've heard-"

Suddenly an NPC ran in, huffing and puffing because running is hard. That was when the NPC came running in.

"What's going on?" Firstchar asked in shock.

"Some army is invading!" the NPC announced.

The announcement prompted Secondchar to rise to their feet.

"Not already!" they exclaimed, then looked at Firstchar. "This is what I was talking about! I had been hearing rumors, and now it is happening!"


So that, in addition to rounding out more description and thoughts and feelings and such, is one of the ways to stretch posts out longer. It has to be done with some caution, and there may be times that a one player will really need to interrupt the other, but that's what OOC conversation is for, sorting stuff like that out. :)

Besides that, I'd suggest working on your capitalization. It can be more difficult to tell where sentences start and end when you're not capitalizing the first word, and it can be tricky to tell what's a name for the same reason. You also appear to skip the apostrophe in contractions (like I'm), which can also make those more difficult to read correctly. It's legitimately difficult for some, and for others, they just get to feeling like you're not putting in the effort they expect, and that can be difficult to get around.

Hey there! There are plenty of RPers on this site who enjoy writing shorter posts, so I don't think you'll have any trouble finding players who will enjoy your writing style.

When it comes to writing longer posts - I think all writers get naturally better at this with experience. I have seen (and even done) some awful attempts to reach a minimum length such as long-winded mental-monologuing and flashbacks. What makes them good in my opinion is their ability to set the scene and character's emotional state.

For example, take these examples:

Mary walked down the road to school.

vs

As she walked down the road, Mary smiled to herself as a gust of wind shook the branches of the cherry blossom tree. The petals danced elegantly in the air for a few fleeting seconds before settling upon the metallic waters of the pond. With a skip in her step she continued her journey to class.

vs

Mary was in a daze as she walked the final leg to school. Her mind buzzed like a radio set to static as she struggled to push the overwhelming dread from her mind. Even though she hadn't eaten anything for breakfast, she could feel the bile rising in her stomach; she going to be sick. She rounded the final corner and the school's clock-tower came into view. The smiling faces of her classmates surrounded her and the fear turned to rage. How could they be so happy in a time like this?

When you are in your day-to-day life you should think about the details. What is 'setting' the scene? Is it the way the sunlight is sparkling on the snow, or is it the ache of cold in your bones? You should also contemplate your favourite authors and think about the language they use and the way they portray emotion and interweave descriptive text.

Novalyyn wrote:
Example if desired
Basically, something like...

First poster
"It's such a lovely day," Firstchar announced.

It really was. The sun was shining and the sky was blue, and lots of other pretty stuff, yay.

Firstchar looked at Secondchar and smiled. They asked, "So what are your plans for today?"

Suddenly an NPC ran in, huffing and puffing because running is hard.

"What's going on?" Firstchar asked in shock.

"Some army is invading!" the NPC announced.

Second poster
Secondchar looked out the window. Yes, it was a fine day indeed, but there were more important things at hand.

"We need to discuss plans, actually," Secondchar told Firstchar. "I've heard-"

That was when the NPC came running in. The announcement prompted Secondchar to rise to their feet.

"Not already!" they exclaimed, then looked at Firstchar. "This is what I was talking about! I had been hearing rumors, and now it is happening!"

Elements of those two posts are actually happening concurrently. I'll try combining them based on time, with the first post in grey and the second post in brown.

"It's such a lovely day," Firstchar announced.

It really was. The sun was shining and the sky was blue, and lots of other pretty stuff, yay.
Secondchar looked out the window. Yes, it was a fine day indeed, but there were more important things at hand.

Firstchar looked at Secondchar and smiled. They asked, "So what are your plans for today?"

"We need to discuss plans, actually," Secondchar told Firstchar. "I've heard-"

Suddenly an NPC ran in, huffing and puffing because running is hard. That was when the NPC came running in.

"What's going on?" Firstchar asked in shock.

"Some army is invading!" the NPC announced.

The announcement prompted Secondchar to rise to their feet.

"Not already!" they exclaimed, then looked at Firstchar. "This is what I was talking about! I had been hearing rumors, and now it is happening!"


I found this example quite amusing to read. ;)

"...and other pretty stuff, yay!"

"Some army's invading!" Lolol

Ok I just had to say that.

sig wrote:
hi all. now i love rping and whatnot, but i cant help but feel im just not good enough for some things. i wont do "literate" or paragraph rps for fear of not being up to snuff, and not delivering long enough replies. i can a write a long starter no problem, but when it comes to responses, i have the hardest time making anything beyond a paragraph if im not feeling inspired enough. like, its weird. i can make long stories and stupid amounts of character lore when im by myself, but get another person or a few in the equation and its suddenly dry. i don't know why, but it becomes such a chore to write out a reply, and requires so much focus and thinking in order to get out something of expected minimum length, it just becomes tedious to do for me. i don't get it. does anyone else feel the same way? is this normal?

what can i do to be better at writing paragraghs? should i just go down to the molecule and cells just so i can write filler so that its an "acceptable length"? im missing out on so much because i dont think i can do it, or ied let people down. i might also mention that i have a form of high functioning autism, so i dont know if thats the cause of my problems or not.

Yes, like they've said, I think that not realizing you cover more time in one post is what throws people off.

You can write your end of the conversation and then leave a space for their answer, and then write another part, and leave another space, and so on. (Just like Novalyyn's example above.)


I'll give a second example because this is fun. :p

My character and your character went to the amusement park. My character paid for her ticket and went through the gate. She laughed with glee to see so many rides in one place.

"Let's try that rollercoaster first! Do you like those?" she asked your character taking his hand and pulling him towards the line.

Later, they went into a tent to watch animals do tricks. My character bought some popcorn and shyly asked if he'd like some.

After they had many rides together, and eaten way too much popcorn, they went home and plopped onto the couch. "I'm never eating popcorn again," my character groaned.

Suddenly, My character's dad walked in the door, looking windblown and frazzled.

"We've been looking for you kids everywhere!! You school called and said you were absent! We thought you two were shot in some back alley somewhere! Where were you?!"

My character looks at your character, wide-eyed, as if silently searching his face for what to say.

----

So you see? I've written the whole day at the amusement park in one post.

But, I left gaps where my partner can respond with how his character would react.

Your character might say,

"Oh no way! I throw up on rollercoasters! D-don't make me do that!" He pulled his hand away and waved her to the ferris wheel instead, which they rode over and over again until they were dizzy.


And then move on to answeing my second paragraph, and then my third, etc.

(I literally did the same thing as done above but I thought two different examples might help even more.)

Anyway, that makes it longer with out going down to the cell and molecule. Lol. And it makes the plot go faster (maybe).

There are plenty of people who enjoy short-length aka 'concise' length RP. Also, literate isn't really a term most people prefer using, as everyone on this website is literate or else they wouldn't have been able to read to join the website.

It's more of a 'grade level' that people write at. For example, someone might write at a 7th grade level, which means they write at what would be considered the same level as someone in 7th grade. Someone else might write at a 10th grade, or 12th grade, or 2nd year college level. None of these are bad, none of these mean someone is better than the other, it's just a way of distinguishing someones writing, so people get matched better.

I personally consider myself at 10th grade level, because that's the last year I went to school - but there are tests you can take/use. I've used this one - testing it on multiple passages I've written and have gotten told my writing is 6th grade level all the way to 11th grade level on various passages. (With an average of 7-8th though) In fact many authors who have done the test have gotten 4th-7th grade level. Most published and popular books are usually no higher than a grade level of 8. I believe. (Note: this 'test' considers the lower the grade level better because the lower the grade level the more people will understand/enjoy/be able to read your writing from a technical standpoint.)

I personally wouldn't pay too much attention to it though except to perhaps find partners that you will have fun writing with! I'd stick to making LFRP posts and checking the 'concise' box. ^-^ There's nothing wrong with concise writing, I have done concise writing and multi-para and while I stick to multi-para, because I enjoy using butt-loads of exposition, concise was fun as well. Whether it's three sentences, three paragraphs, or ten paragraphs, it's all good. <3

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Forums > RP Discussion > diminishing returns