Why is it so empowering to write pro-con articles?
If you’re familiar with the monstrosity that is Wattpad, you might also be familiar with an interesting Wattpad-only feature called “in-line commenting”.
This means that each line
like the one above, users can comment on without having to wait until the end to give their comments in full-dose.
And it can be a paragraph, too. Anywhere where there is a line break, users can comment on it and give their immediate reactions.
Being rather new to such a system (having joined Nov, 14, 2017), it still makes me feel awkward around it. I’m still like the new kid in the neighborhood who can’t really fit in to the neighborhood-kid-exclusive tree house system (Arthur reference). I don’t really know what to do with it and for a long time, I avoided it.
But now I can clearly see the pros of in-line comments as well as the cons. The cons may be biased, however.
Starting with the cons for a change.
As a Reader
In-line comments are quite phone app oriented.
If you don’t have emoji’s to express, you have to explain everything. And sometimes it’s hard to decide what to write and how much explaining you need to do.
Long paragraphs disable you from making comments on the first sentence.
As a writer, sometimes you can’t NOT write long paragraphs. You can’t break it up or it’ll look weird. But as a reader on Wattpad, it can get a bit inconvenient when making in-line comments. Maybe you only want to comment on the first sentence but you can only do that at the end of the paragraph.
Long paragraphs disable you from making more two or more comments in chronological order of posting.
Commenting on the first sentence of the long paragraph means that if you post it but find something else to say at the end of the paragraph, your newer post appears before your older one. So it’s not in chronological posting.
I tend to continue reading after writing an in-line comment to make sure I have said everything I wanted to say for this paragraph so my comments will come out chronologically.
Limit of 2000 characters (just like twitter, spaces and line breaks count, too).
Might seem like a lot but if you ever critique their writing, you will quickly find it is not enough.
As a Writer
A good writer on Wattpad will reply to all or most of the comments they receive from readers. This is to show engagement and perhaps in hopes the reader will return.
But I find myself saying, “Thank you” “Thank you” over and over or, sometimes I have nothing to say except “XD” because that’s how I felt. I can’t say, “Thank you for your comment. It made me laugh a lot.” It sounds a bit…cold to me. It’s just a mechanical reply.
What to reply to the reader who commented without sounding mechanical or unnatural.
is a con for writers.
As a Reader
You can bounce off of other people’s comments.
You get to see other readers’ comments and if you agree with them you can tag their name in your reply or even reply directly to them. It’s a good way to be an engaging reader.
You can give your immediate reaction.
If you thought it scared you, you can say it right away without glossing over that feeling and not mentioning it at all to the writer (unless you take notes elsewhere).
If it made you feel AWWWW 😀 you can say that, too.
Good for Grammar Nazis
Grammar mistakes can be mentioned on the spot without having to find them again at the end of reading.
As a Writer
You can interact with your reader’s immediate reactions.
Makes it feel more personal and close-knit. You might even get some permanent supporters and that’s good for writers on Wattpad because the more noticed you are, the better chance you have at more people reading your work.
Despite all I’ve said,
Wattpad is a good community writing website for those of you who wanna see if you have it in you to be a writer or not.