A Place of Safety
I expect simple behaviours here. Friendship, and love.
Any advice should be from the perspective of the person asking, not the person giving!
We have had to make new membership moderated to combat the huge number of spammers who register
















You are here: Home > Forum > A Place of Safety > Literary Merit > With Apologies Mr Dickens
With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67194] Wed, 28 November 2012 14:29 Go to next message
timmy

Has no life at all
Location: UK, in Devon
Registered: February 2003
Messages: 13640



I'm going to trail a story that will very probably not be coming here. With Apologies Mr Dickens is starting out on its own author's site on the 30th November.

I had the privilege of being asked to give chapter by chapter opinions on this tale. I am amazed and happy that some of my thoughts may have been incorporated into the story, but I wait to see like you do.

The author is registering here and will be happy to respond to any comments.

[Updated on: Tue, 26 February 2013 00:42]




Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67195 is a reply to message #67194] Sat, 01 December 2012 08:52 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy

Has no life at all
Location: UK, in Devon
Registered: February 2003
Messages: 13640



The story is now started. The author and I are looking at ways of bringing it here. That decision is very much his alone. On his site the first chapter is posted.

[Updated on: Tue, 26 February 2013 00:43]




Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67200 is a reply to message #67194] Sun, 02 December 2012 09:43 Go to previous messageGo to next message
solsticeman is currently offline  solsticeman

Likes it here

Registered: November 2012
Messages: 105



The first chapter has been a pleasure to read. I do hope he opts to post it here as well as on his own site. I am sure that it would be a worthy addition. The literary allusion to the opening line of a Christmas Carol wasa lovely touch... well done. The theme is gentle and the style neat and economical, not a word that isn't needed... a delight.
Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67201 is a reply to message #67200] Sun, 02 December 2012 16:32 Go to previous messageGo to next message
kit is currently offline  kit

Getting started
Location: United States
Registered: November 2012
Messages: 5



Thanks for the encouragement and support, solsticeman. I appreciate it very much.

Timmy has been very helpful, very supportive, and I would like to reward him appropriately. But he keeps saying no so I suppose I'll probably have to let him post the story instead Laughing

I think you'll like the next chapter, but feel I should warn you that the story does get darker and more intense after that. If you don't like those kinds of stories, you may want to consider whether you wish to continue with it.

But, again, thanks for the very nice comment.

Smooch! Exclamation



Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67202 is a reply to message #67201] Sun, 02 December 2012 16:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy

Has no life at all
Location: UK, in Devon
Registered: February 2003
Messages: 13640



"kit wrote on Sun, 02 December 2012 16:32"
I think you'll like the next chapter, but feel I should warn you that the story does get darker and more intense after that. If you don't like those kinds of stories, you may want to consider whether you wish to continue with it.


Somehow I doubt you have written the darkest tale we've ever seen, you know. It has some darkness, yes, of course it has. What may surprise you is that "even" Grasshopper has some dark tales in his collection. They stand out as being his better pieces in my view. The thing I like best about darkness is that it usually avoids the clichés we often see in gay romantic stories.



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67203 is a reply to message #67202] Sun, 02 December 2012 17:39 Go to previous messageGo to next message
kit is currently offline  kit

Getting started
Location: United States
Registered: November 2012
Messages: 5



The darkest tale I've written is one I'll never put online, at least under my name.

But darkness depends in part on where someone is from and I suspect at least some of you chaps have probably seen things much darker than my little holiday tale Laughing

But I can be dark if I want to Twisted Evil



Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67222 is a reply to message #67201] Fri, 07 December 2012 09:45 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy

Has no life at all
Location: UK, in Devon
Registered: February 2003
Messages: 13640



I have some exciting news. Now I expect you will all be reading ahead on the author's own site, and why not? But the story will come here and is scheduled as a Christmas Story. Usually we expect Christmas Stories (in capital letters) to be smaller offerings, but we allow exceptions in Stories for Special Occasions, and are making one for this tale. So our apologies for a serial jumping the regular queue, but, well, what would you do if you were us?



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67223 is a reply to message #67201] Fri, 07 December 2012 18:22 Go to previous messageGo to next message
solsticeman is currently offline  solsticeman

Likes it here

Registered: November 2012
Messages: 105



Hi, While waiting for more Dickens I have been reading your Connected. The parallels between life in rural Vermont and a Welsh mining village (where I grew up) are quite startling. Josh says that there are no gays where he lives, and that is so like a mining village. If you have found my Shades of Gray that Timmy has posted on iomfats then you will see what I mean. I said to someone the other day that there were no effeminate boys in our school, and I thought that was simply because we had no effeminate role models to show us how camp was done. I think in Connections I see the same situation. Josh worries about a lack of grandchildren, while my hero, having watched two old men have their once a week meet out on the mountain, bursts into tears and asks "Is this all there is?" I think that in those days one of the most powerful dissuaders from a gay life was the fear of loneliness. There simply were no gays in the village!

hugs

Jeff (there were no hugs either!)

Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67226 is a reply to message #67223] Sat, 08 December 2012 04:19 Go to previous messageGo to next message
kit is currently offline  kit

Getting started
Location: United States
Registered: November 2012
Messages: 5



Jeff, I wish I could say I've read your story, let alone seen it, but I haven't.  I did just locate it on the site, however, and was curious as to whether it's finished at this point or whether there's still  more to come?  (Ah, after a second look, I see that it is in fact complete).

"Is this all there is?"

God, I'm not sure I want to read a story where one of the characters is smart enough or desperate enough to ask something like that. Laughing

Nor am I sure I would want to know whether he had discovered the answer (and what it was if he had).

It sounds like something I should look at, but I make no promises at the moment.  In addition to being consumed with the Dickens tale (Chapter 2 is now up), I'm working on a much longer story and the creative juices seem to be running quite strongly so I need to take advantage of that while the iron is hot.

I would guess that Vermont is different from your Welsh mining village in important ways.  However, it seems like we're drawn to the same types of characters.  As you've probably guessed, Connected, at least the version posted on my web site, is finished although I would like to rewrite it at some point because it does have some problems I need to address.  If you have additional thoughts as you go along, please jot them down and send them to me when and if you finish up with the story.

It's funny though.  When I first started posting Connected online, I had no idea anyone from another country would ever see the story, let alone be interested in it.  I just assumed that it was a story that only Americans could or would understand and appreciate.  I've been astonished at how many people from abroad have ended up reading the story and liking it.  I guess all of us can identify with characters who struggle, regardless of where they reside.

hugs,

Kit (I've stockpiled plenty of hugs to hand out)



This is not all there is  [message #67227 is a reply to message #67226] Sat, 08 December 2012 11:22 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy

Has no life at all
Location: UK, in Devon
Registered: February 2003
Messages: 13640



The thing I've always wanted the lads of today to be clear about is that "This" whatever it was "is not all there is."

When I was growing up, all there seemed to be was sex in public toilets with the smell of urine and urinal candy. I was afraid of glory holes, and terrified by the concept of that being all there was. I wanted, needed, closeness, companionship, giggles, snuggles. I was afraid of queers and of being a queer. I was approached on a station once, my mother told me, and exhibited disgust. I'm sure some fo that disgust was a frisson of excitement, but it is an incident I could not recall when she told me.

I hated "queer men" and then "gay men" en masse. That was all there was. I giggled about Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears. We visited Aldeburgh often, and my cousin delivered their morning newspapers. He sniggered about them and is a vile homophobe to this day. They, had I known, were role models to be cherished, but their being a pair of queers was all there was as far as I could see.

I started this site so many years ago with something in mind. I wanted to make sure today's lads know that there is more, so much more. Those who come here visit the site for three reasons:

Those who stay come back because they have found that indefinable something about the ability and the right to true, romantic and enduring love. That is why I started the site.

We all have different wants and needs from relationships. Some love love itself, others need companionship, others again are comfortable in their own company alone. The common thread, though, is the stories abut love. Whatever our circumstances, whatever our own needs, we know that love is available, should we choose to reach for it. We have reclaimed the ability to give and receive love from those whose lot it was to fuck in toilets, and who seemed to throw it away, however much they needed or wanted it.



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
icon6.gif With Apologies Mr Dickens seems no longer to be heading our way  [message #67478 is a reply to message #67222] Sun, 24 February 2013 16:27 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy

Has no life at all
Location: UK, in Devon
Registered: February 2003
Messages: 13640



We've run out of chapters, and the author has expressed unwillingness to send us further files, asking us instead to scrape the files from his site or from Nifty. I'm afraid we don't do that. There is far too much scope for error and misunderstanding. Additionally, it's work, and the site is a hobby. We're giving him a few days to consider what he will do, though, so don't despair, at least not yet.



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens seems no longer to be heading our way  [message #67482 is a reply to message #67478] Mon, 25 February 2013 12:31 Go to previous messageGo to next message
kit is currently offline  kit

Getting started
Location: United States
Registered: November 2012
Messages: 5



Reasonable people will understand there is usually more than one side to a disagreement; and if anyone feels this matter is of sufficient import to want to know mine, feel free to e-mail me directly as I would not agree my side is fairly characterized in the previous posting.

I prefer to spend time writing stories, not arguing about them; stories I make available for free but stories I will insist be published as I publish them myself on my web site or at least in the manner I submit them to someone else. That hasn't been the case here.

What I'm not interested in doing is engaging in a tedious exchange of tit for tat with someone who believes only his point of view is correct and who will insist on having the last word no matter what.



Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens seems no longer to be heading our way  [message #67486 is a reply to message #67482] Mon, 25 February 2013 18:58 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy

Has no life at all
Location: UK, in Devon
Registered: February 2003
Messages: 13640



There is no misunderstanding. You have told me that I am to scrape your story from your site or from the Nifty archive. We do not do that. If you would like it to be posted then please send chapters. If you are not going to send chapters then please tell me unambiguously that you are not. I am publishing your story because I think it to be a good story.

the following email chain applies:

Me to you:
Quote:
Subject: [IOMfAtS]: With Apologies Mr. Dickens - Chapter 4

I think we are out of stock


You replied:
Quote:
You are.

Feel free to pick up the rest of Dickens from the web site via copy and paste.


I replied:
Quote:
Substantially easier to receive files. We don't pick up with copy and paste, I'm afraid. It is too prone to errors and layout problems


You replied:
Quote:
Sorry about that, but I'm working on another story at the moment and that's my priority.

I've found copying and pasting from the my web site directly into a Word document works just fine. It's very simple really. You would have to do some editing, of course, but you were already doing that with what I sent you.

If not, you could also save the html files directly from Nifty (under the Beginnings heading). Personally that would be my second choice, but it's anothe option.

Or feel free to take down what you have already and just be done with the whole thing. It seems like there were a lot of misunderstandings along the way.


I replied
Quote:
I don't think there were any misunderstandings. We've been waiting happily for additional chapters from you and wondering when they might come. I imagine you have the source files already and you posted them to your site?

We do not copy and paste items from other sites, with or without permission.


When nothing came back I alerted readers here that there was a challenge:
Quote:
We've run out of chapters, and the author has expressed unwillingness to send us further files, asking us instead to scrape the files from his site or from Nifty. I'm afraid we don't do that. There is far too much scope for error and misunderstanding. Additionally, it's work, and the site is a hobby. We're giving him a few days to consider what he will do, though, so don't despair, at least not yet.


That is all that has happened. I have no idea why you feel upset over this. If I've been unclear in any way at any time and that has caused a misunderstanding I apologise unreservedly. I am just a publisher of stories. Usually there are no gremlins in the system except production scheduling issues.

I'm as happy to continue with your story as to stop. If you want us to continue then please package up the chapters and send them. If you don't want us to continue then please say so with unambiguous clarity.



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens seems no longer to be heading our way  [message #67489 is a reply to message #67486] Mon, 25 February 2013 20:29 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Kitzyma is currently offline  Kitzyma

Likes it here

Registered: March 2012
Messages: 215



Having been writing and posting stories on various websites for more than 10 years, I've learned that publishing a story, like many other activities in a complex society, is a cooperative enterprise. Everything works smoothly when both author and webmaster cooperate to find the optimum proceedure that minimises work for both parties. That sometimes requires compromise, but so do most things we do in our daily lives.

The situation in this case appears to be this:

An author starts sending files of a story for publication. Then that author stops sending files.

The author says he's too busy writing to send more files and that further chapters should be scavenged from other sites.

Taking from other sites requires considerable additional effort, and even worse, it risks errors such as missing chunks. Also, it could at a later date give rise to possible arguments about copyright.

As an author, I would find it hard to believe that the original files were deleted after sending or uploading to the other sites. So surely the author must have those files available to send.

One wonders how much 'valuable writing time' would be taken up by attaching those files to an email and sending them to complete the story on this site. Surely it's much less effort and time than the site master would require if he were to go scavenging.

So, as an author, and knowing that publishing stories is a cooperative effort, I couldn't understand why an author would behave in such a manner. Attempting to solve that mystery, I followed the invitation (in his post above) to email him direct to get is viewpoint, but I have so far received no response. Then I took a look at his member profile for this forum and saw this:

Occupation: troublemaker Smile
Interests: making trouble; being difficult

Perhaps that should give me a clue.

Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens seems no longer to be heading our way  [message #67490 is a reply to message #67489] Mon, 25 February 2013 20:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
kiwi is currently offline  kiwi

Likes it here
Location: New Zealand
Registered: August 2009
Messages: 317



I probably shouldn't, but i'm going to put my 2 cents in here. I hate seeing squabbles in the Place of Safety, and it'd be a shame to see a good story remain uncompleted. Also, reading an on-line disagreement could put other people off putting their stories forward.

Everyone has got a story to tell but many of us lack confidence in our 'work', especially when there are so many excellent writers hosted here.

I really hope you'll reconsider and do what timmy suggests, Kit. It doesn't seem to be that onerous and surely you do want to share your story?

A wise man said to me, a long time ago, that timmy's not an ogre and i've found that to be very true. I've posted a lot here now, probably too much - but it's fun! The occasional changes that have been made in my stories have always been for the better and whenever I've asked for something to be altered it has not been a problem. Thanks, timmy. (delete this if you want to, but it's what i'm thinking).

cheers

[Updated on: Mon, 25 February 2013 20:53]

Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens seems no longer to be heading our way  [message #67493 is a reply to message #67490] Mon, 25 February 2013 22:24 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy

Has no life at all
Location: UK, in Devon
Registered: February 2003
Messages: 13640



I've been speaking to Megaman, who also can't see what the challenge is here. He mentioned that the site is ruled now by "a combination of english passion for queueing combined with the german absoluteness of adhering to rules."

This explains why I mentioned we were out of stock of chapters. I was hoping to avoid a gap that would mean the queuing process omitting Mr Dickens for a while. The upsetting thing is that we pushed Mr Dickens in before Christmas as a special story, and have been sneaking it in as quickly as we could without upsetting other authors. Looks like the Ghost of Christmas Present (pun intended) is haunting us.



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67497 is a reply to message #67194] Mon, 25 February 2013 23:23 Go to previous messageGo to next message
kit is currently offline  kit

Getting started
Location: United States
Registered: November 2012
Messages: 5



Timmy, unlike Nifty, which publishes what I send exactly as I send it, you've unilaterally edited the four chapters that I sent in ways I do not approve of; and when I asked, at the very least, that you include the sub-title of the story with each chapter posted, you said: "What we have done is added A Tale of Sin and Redemption to your index page. The challenge with subtitling it is that it becomes a manual exercise each time, which tends to get forgotten. So the deal is that, if we can remember, then we will. It cannot go as the story title, and there is no easy space for a subtitle."

I'm sorry, but as the author I am sensitive about titling and sub-titling and that's not acceptable to me and comes on top of other changes I didn't expect. The point is, the rules of the road here get made unilaterally as we go along. That's fine. It's your site. It's not what I anticipated and not what Nifty does. Like I said, Nifty publishes what I send EXACTLY the way I send it. Apparently, you can't do that for whatever reason. As I said, that's fine, but it's not what I understood would be the case. So, unambiguously, I won't be sending you anything more to be edited by you. I write for free. I would like what I write published the way I write it, headers and all. I don't think it's asking a lot, but apparently I'm wrong about that.

You can say I'm being too picky. I can say you should have been clearer about the rules of the road. To me that constitutes a misunderstanding; but you're entitled to your own opinion that there is no misunderstanding.

Kitzyma, I have received no e-mail from you. I can't be expected to respond to what I don't receive. Nor can I reasonably be expected to respond instantaneously even to things I do receive. I'm sorry you lack a sense of humor and took the member profile so seriously. Rolling Eyes

I won't trouble you, Timmy or anyone else by coming back to this site again. But don't let that stop you from savaging me behind my back.



Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67499 is a reply to message #67497] Mon, 25 February 2013 23:44 Go to previous messageGo to next message
timmy

Has no life at all
Location: UK, in Devon
Registered: February 2003
Messages: 13640



I think you need to understand things like house style and that you do not get absolute right of formatting. But I am no longer going to waste my time with your tale. You are out of here. So is it. It's a pity, but there it is. Of course I do know that you will read this message. I also know that I will not change my mind. What a shame. The story was good. You have potential as a writer. but not, I think, for mainstream publication with an attitude like that



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67505 is a reply to message #67499] Tue, 26 February 2013 09:20 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Nick Deverill is currently offline  Nick Deverill

Toe is in the water

Registered: November 2012
Messages: 78



It should be added, scraping or copying website text carries the risk of damaging the formatting. In particular, the 'new paragraph' mark is interpreted differently by web editors, Word, and text editors.

The result of this is, the copier has to check their version against the source to make sure all is correct. Using the 'rules' of English is not enough as there is no such thing as a hard and fast set of rules and authors quite often will do something 'forbidden' for effect.

So there is substantially more work involved, yet unless the writer's computer filing system is a mess, sending an email with the next chapter attached takes less work than the present argument.

Nick
Re: With Apologies Mr Dickens  [message #67506 is a reply to message #67505] Tue, 26 February 2013 10:13 Go to previous message
timmy

Has no life at all
Location: UK, in Devon
Registered: February 2003
Messages: 13640



I fear, Nick, that he expressed other objections, ones he felt to be insurmountable, but let them become his reason for simply withholding chapters. It's a shame, but we have many good authors and many good stories. His story can be found elsewhere and it is a good story.

You're absolutely right about scraping. It creates work, leads to accusations of malpractice, and ensures formatting problems. Sometimes one just has to walk away.

I have no idea why he thinks he will be savaged behind his back. I really do not expect that to happen.



Author of Queer Me! Halfway Between Flying and Crying - the true story of life for a gay boy in the Swinging Sixties in a British all male Public School
Previous Topic: Lee Mariner
Next Topic: Paternity by Kit
Goto Forum: