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Rated: E · Article · Writing · #987609
A guide to the rating system for the determined writer.
It happens to all of us.

The most dangerous moment in all of our time on writing.com: You've been rated.

Forget all those articles your writing.com colleagues have posted explaining what each star means. Granted, they are interesting and may shed a bit of light on their thoughts, but the time to use them is when designing your own rating system.

So, where do you turn?

That's what this article is meant to do. The way I see it, you have to first decide whether you want to be a writer. Is writing something that feeds you, something that makes you stronger, that makes you want to live a few days longer? If so, then these translations of the various star ratings are the right ones- for you.

*Star* *Star* *Star* *Star* *Star*

You have hit upon something here. This rating belongs both to the ready-to-publish and the scintillating diamond in the rough that needs some tweaking. It's up to you to decide whether this gem is ready for market or needs a few more finishing touches. Keep up the good work: Write on.

*Star* *Star* *Star* *Star* *Starw*

Don't stop now. You've got a good piece of work and are nearing the end. This rating applies to works that are merely amusing as well as those that have "star potential" but might need revision or a more appropriate audience- sometimes both. Keep at it and you'll hit your target: Write on.

*Star* *Star* *Star* *Starw* *Starw*

Oh, the bane of mediocrity. One way or another, this piece just didn't spark much in your reader. Maybe he isn't in the mood, or you made some small mistake that really grated on him. Pay attention to what you see in the actual letters you put on screen. Did you write what you meant, or are you pretending? Either way, you've made it this far. The best ever written won't work on everybody. Shake it off, accept the fact that your reviewer MIGHT be too jealous to give you high marks, and keep following your star: Write on.

*Star* *Star* *Starw* *Starw* *Starw*

Oh, the horror. Well, maybe it's not so bad. Being trashed sometimes just means the reviewer was in a bad mood. The reader wasn't bright enough to get your point. Maybe he thought you were making fun of him. Maybe there's something you missed, some flaw that you need to go back and fix. Mentally put yourself in the same category as the great writers. They all have, on occasion, written something a little, well, below par. You always wanted to be in the same boat as your literary heroes, didn't you? So chin up, and back to the writing desk: Write on.

*Star* *Starw* *Starw* *Starw* *Starw*

This could mean all sorts of things. Usually, it's just one reader. You know readers are difficult. If everybody agrees your gem is a dud, it means nothing. Everybody plays a sour note. In the end, when you finally get it, when you finally hit your stride and the best seller list will anybody even care about your mistakes? When you write something I love, that's all I'm going to remember. Trust me, the place you need to be after a one-star rating is your writing desk. So sit back down: write on.

.                                        *Starw* *Starw* *Starw* *Starw* *Starw*This item has no ratings.

Gulp! Well, this could mean a few things. Did you set the Access Restrictions to :"Keep PRIVATE, my eyes only!" Okay, probably not, so it's just a matter of time before somebody reads it and shares their opinion. What to do? Send out a few links, raise the Auto Reward Gift points, and give it another edit. Did you write about something you care about? Did you make yourself clear? If not, rewrite. If you did, then congratulations. It's time to start a new piece: write on.

OK, you caught me. The final conclusion you draw from each and every one of the ratings is the same: keep writing. You felt writing calling you in the beginning; nothing has changed. Keep writing until you've written everything you want to write. Then pause; in a moment there will be more.

If, along the way, you come up with something worth buying, by all means: publish it, and get back to writing.

© Copyright 2005 Joto-Kai (jotokai at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
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