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Main Site Story Visibility and Site Functionality for Writing

Fulmin Drake

New Member
(While I did post this in the stickied thread, it has not received replies of any form for nearly a week, nevermind a response to my post. I apologize if making a copy-paste thread dedicated to it is a faux pas, but I would appreciate some attention on the issues outlined below)

So, I've made a preliminary check using the search function and didn't stumble across anything in regards to this, but apologies if it's already been discussed.

Hosting writing on FA is awful. I mean, writing is already at a significant disadvantage compared to visual art: It lacks the immediate eye-catching nature of drawings, requires significantly more investment from a viewer to engage with it, and to be frank the average piece of writing found on the internet at large (nevermind niche fetish content) can be... lacking, which gives the entire art form a bad name. So, FA adding even more impediments to that is really quite bothersome. For example:

Stories have a tiny thumbnail, even when it's a custom-made one. In a world of trying to catch eyes that might glaze over your work in picoseconds, having the smallest visual footprint on search and browse pages is a poor position to be in. Compared to a picture upload, they can be upwards of 1/4 to 1/3 smaller. Moreover, due to the massive downsizing that results from squeezing a picture into that small of a resolution, they also look worse thanks to compression artifacts. Some writers resort to posting their work as a 'picture' just to be more noticeable, which is a stopgap measure that shouldn't be necessary.

Secondly, unless I'm incorrect (and feel free to correct me), you can't have a preview of your story from the upload unless it's posted in .txt, which kills all formatting. Any time a user has to click through to see something, there's a notable chance they'll just leave (I've certainly not bothered to download many stories if there wasn't a web-viewable mirror or filetype like .pdf provided). DA on the other hand has a handy built-in viewer so that you can not only host a story directly with formatting intact, but you can host a long story without it pushing the comments section six feet under. This isn't such a deal-breaker for me as my work is typically under a thousand words, but it would be nice to have a solution if I ever produce something of significant length and for the many writers who produce long-form work. In the end the sad state of affairs is that posting your story in the Description field is a categorically superior option, although I make sure to provide a Gdoc mirror with my uploads as well.

And on that last note, FA's current text system means that copying into it requires manual formatting for italics, bold, and other aspects. This one is probably beyond the site's codebase, I imagine, but it would still be nice if it could recognize italics being copy-pasted into it and match accordingly. In the meantime I've made do by adding asterisks to italics in my stories and then Find-Replacing them with the BBCode strings.

I realize it's a bit of a tough sell to get sweeping changes made to what must be a fraction of a fraction of the art uploaded to the site, but if us writers could at least get equal treatment when it comes to thumbnails I would be largely satisfied.

If no solution is forthcoming, it would be nice to be able to change the category of my uploads to a picture so I can at least use the work-around for getting a fair-sized thumbnail (as opposed to deleting and re-submitting them, thereby ruining their tenuous chronological ordering and losing the favourites they've accumulated).
 

Fulmin Drake

New Member
greasyfork.org: FA TextViewer

How about promoting this well enough to force the site to add this functionality?
I mean it surely helps.
Least then you have native inline viewing of any filetype.

Ah, I'll give this a try, thanks. And yeah, is always admitting when a user makes a temporary solution or improvement but the main service doesn't officially adopt it (IE Better Discuss or Reddit Enhancement Suite).
 

FormerUser

Active Member
Ah, I'll give this a try, thanks. And yeah, is always admitting when a user makes a temporary solution or improvement but the main service doesn't officially adopt it (IE Better Discuss or Reddit Enhancement Suite).
No worries, It works well enough and is very handy at parsing out the files to show you everything.

There are plenty of features FA hasn't implemented but exist as user scripts made by the community.
 

Fulmin Drake

New Member
No worries, It works well enough and is very handy at parsing out the files to show you everything.

There are plenty of features FA hasn't implemented but exist as user scripts made by the community.
Gave the FA text viewer a try, worked like a charm. Would you happen to have any other suggestions for useful extensions?
 
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