Latest WhatCulture Article

So…….I’m going to complain.  I really don’t like complaining this blatantly on my blog, but I do it rarely, so I’m giving myself a break.

My latest WC list is up.  Please take a look: http://whatculture.com/film/20-lesser-known-facts-surrounding-making-star-wars.php

I spent a long time on this list.  Too long.  It’s been in the process for probably 2 months and I wanted to make sure every single fact was picked for their juicy flavor.  Even though I’m sure some people knew these facts, I didn’t want to just throw something together  that everyone knew.  There had to be enough in there that you wanted to keep going until the very end.  After writing it, I painstakingly went through it for spelling errors, and reworked everything to the point where I thought the countdown was appropriate, and other Star Wars fans would enjoy reading it.

 

I really want this list to be appreciated by other fans

I really want this list to be appreciated by other fans

In these past few months that I have been working on it, WC has changed around a few of their procedures.  For instance, you can now get paid for your articles/lists.  Woo.  Okay, it’s not much at all and your payment is completely generated by how many views you have and not by the quality of your work.  The more views you have, the more money you get paid.  (Right now, looking at my views, I will probably get around $8-$9 LOL)

With the fact that you can now get paid, they also give you extensive feedback on your articles and you get rated on this feedback.  Makes sense.  If they are going to start paying you, they want to feel like it’s worth it to be on their page.  I like feedback, I really do.  I have always taken feedback on my stories, essays, etc., just fine.

However, when I got the feedback on this list, I was told to cut my words down by 70%.  I was a little surprised, especially as my last two lists had the same amount of words for each point.  They said people are not going to keep clicking through a list that has too many words and I was going to lose viewers….which is confusing because in their rules they say that each point has to have a minimum of 100 words.  So they were telling me to cut down my points to 90-100 words each.

So I did what they said.  I cut it back.  They are the editors, after all.  In the beginning of editing, I did realize that I gave too much information.  There were some points where I proved every fact threefold with examples and it was not needed.  This is a list on a pop culture page, not my blog, and an average fan isn’t interested in every single actor who played different parts within the movie.  I did the best that I could when cutting out information and words, but there was a point where I had to stop because I was losing information that was essential to it.

I resubmitted it and voila, they published it.  But when they published it, even more was different.  Some of the photos I had chosen were changed; more of the writing had been cut.

I started wandering around different Star Wars articles on their page and I realized that the shorter the list (between 5-10 points), the longer you can go in depth.  But…But…why?  Are people’s attention spans really that short?  I’m making it sound like each point of mine had about 500 words, which is NOT true at all.  I had about 150-200 per point; enough (I think) to make you feel like you got a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, instead of a slice of bread.

I just don’t know how I feel about this.  I’m trying to write an article that has some substance to it and that makes fans of Star Wars feel like they are reading something interesting and/or new.

But reading through it now, I feel like there is nothing left.  Is this really the article I wrote?  It lacks the Star Wars depth and information that I love to write about.  And aren’t you supposed to be happier after all the edits are done because you feel like it made your work stronger?

Anyway, this experience kind of left me feeling down and like my work is not taken seriously.  :/  I was debating if I should post this, but it’s not like I even get enough traffic from WC to this blog for it to really matter.

Do you guys think the article is okay?  Or do you agree that there is not a lot of depth to it and you want more?  Or is this all in my head?  Should I be letting this roll off my shoulders more, since this is a pop culture page, not a Star Wars page?

C&H writing

Advertisements

18 thoughts on “Latest WhatCulture Article

  1. I have to agree with you on this one. For a lot of us fans it was the depth of Star Wars that really intrigued us, making us want to learn all we could. Unfortunately, it seems in this day and age people are only interested in short and simple, (not that I’m thinking of a few recent movies that are only popular because they are flashy and action filled with no regard to character development and depth), it’s kind of sad, really. Now with all that said, sorry for the long post, I enjoyed reading your list. There were things in there that I didn’t even know about. Always fun to learn something new and fascinating about your all time favorite movie. So, thank you.

    • Aw, shucks, thanks Lindsey! I’m glad that at least you enjoyed it. I appreciate the compliment and the understanding of my frustration. I couldn’t decide if I was being a brat by complaining or if I was justified. Maybe a little of both?
      Which fact was new to you?

      • Your welcome.:) Number 20 was a new one for me. I knew who Jeremy Bulloch was but didn’t know they had used him for an emperial. Number 13. Goina have to put hotel sidi driss on my “places to vist list”.:) I didn’t know about 10 and 9 either. Pretty ingenious way to keep those all too important facts a secret. I didn’t know number 8. I already deeply admire George Lucas but reading this one only deepend that admiration. And last number 3. Only Mr. Lucas would be humble enough to bet against himself.

  2. Let’s face it: your original article was likely better than what was published. But those editors should know their audience; if they say they have short attention spans, then they probably do.

    Don’t worry; there’s room on the internet for “in-depth” Star Wars scholarship…maybe just not on WC. My suggestion is to work within their guidelines as best you can, and if you have more to say, find another venue, because SW fans like me will still want to read it.

    I did enjoy the article…there were definitely a few things that were new to me!

    • Thanks for the encouragement Mei-Mei. You’re right – work within their guidelines as best as I can, and maybe put the rest somewhere else…like here? Or just keep it all in my head, haha.

      I’m trying to figure out what I should do for my next article, and I’m a little down about it, so I’m not entirely sure. I’m afraid of writing something short, and them telling me it has to be longer, or vice versa again. I guess we’ll have to see how it goes.

  3. It sounds like this is a good learning experience, if nothing else. I’ve found lists of 5-7 things work best on my blog. 5-9 things is the amount the short term memory of our brain can absorb at one time, making it a good range of numbers to keep things in.
    It is a good article, and I hope you’ll find inspiration for more.

    • You know, it’s weird. I did do those first two with articles 5-10 points, but they give out more “accolades”…i can’t really find the right word here…but they give more internal awards for longer lists. So I figured I would shoot for that. I dunno. I give up.

      • Well, that’s a great reason to do longer lists. A longer list with multiple pages 1. takes more time and 2. will keep the reader on the site longer. So, I guess that’s what they’re going for?

    • Woo! $10! Awesome. I’ll put it into my travel fund. I actually just checked and I’m up to $14 so go me!

      I actually have not seen that link (good job!) but it’s pretty funny! I always did wonder about those torpedos making the right angle turn. Haha.

  4. Tough call. I clicked over and read the article first before finishing the post here… If I had been reading it with a critical eye I might have been able to better decide if the points were a good length… which is mostly moot, because I have no problem reading lots of words, but I don’t like clicking through 10 different pages to get to all those words, which isn’t on you, that’s on them and how they broke things out.
    I’m not sure I would continue to submit work to a place that was changing it before publishing it… especially if they didn’t ask you about the changes beforehand… they are now misrepresenting you. But, I’ve never really been paid to write anything either… and money does funny things to me, so maybe I wouldn’t care after all.
    So, as you can see, I’m zero help. 😛
    But, I’ll be looking for THX easter eggs whenever I watch the films from now on!

    • Yeah, it is this weird feeling of, “Wait, you changed stuff! Oh, but you’re paying me…Okay, fine.” I think if I didn’t have this blog as an outlet, I might be more upset. I mean, I was still disappointed, but I think it would have been more personal if I didn’t have this other place to go to.

      And the Easter Eggs are tricky! Good luck finding them all without looking it up online.

  5. I think it wasn’t very nice of them to cut down your list and mess around with your work like that. After all, by rights you should hold the copyright. It seems like they’re only paying you to let them lead you around to me.
    Oh, and can you post the original on your blog? The other website has crappy quality, too many stupid ads, and takes forever to load.

Use Your Comlink...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s