cest_what: (skeleton ryan)
There was yet another round of "Oh god AO3 is going to the dogs or the teenie badficcers whatever" complaints in my corner of tumblr just recently. (Which is always sort of equal parts sad and hilarious, partly because it's the tumblrfication of tagging at AO3 that most gets to me anyway.) And basically what came out of it was a bunch of conversations about the kudos/hits ratio being the best marker of quality.

If you could sort by the kudos/hits ratio that would obviously be the best (although I guess it would create a skew against multi-chapter WIPs in the same way sorting by hits skews in favour of them), but it's still pretty invaluable, imprecise as it is.

Anyway, it made me really curious about how different my most popular fics list would be on this criteria rather than the hitcount one. So I spreadsheeted. 85% of my fic at AO3 was uploaded before the kudos system was introduced, so it's not hugely meaningful, but still, here are my top 10 most popular fics by kudos/hitcount ratio, with chatter:

A few of them are definitely surprising )

I'm increasingly glad for the kudos system. As a reader for the quality gauge and as a writer for the little parcel of reassurance every day that I'm not throwing words into a void. Fandom is so lonely and lacking in social engagement for me now, compared to what it was. I have a few excellent fannish friends, but I don't feel like I'm part of a community. Tumblr is so terrible as a fannish platform, the only way to talk to people you don't know is to reblog or comment in a way that requires them to make a whole new post to acknowledge you, or to use the Ask Box, which is all Please expand on your important opinions and not at all This is interesting and here are my thoughts - which is a dynamic that makes me way too uncomfortable to ever use Ask Boxes. And even with fic, even with well-received stories, you deal in handfuls of AO3 comments from strangers compared to piles of LJ comments from your extended friends list.

And I think the HSO is especially driving home the loss of a sense of actual community that I have going from Bandom to Homestuck? The HSO is the most vibrant, ridiculously active fanworks fest I have ever been involved in. And it's still. so. lonely. There's still so little conversation and feedback, it's just this whirlwind of creation. Which is awesome. But I miss knowing a whole crowd of other creators and having them know who I am, and having long comment thread discussions, and feeling like part of something.

But hey, every day I get a kudos email and I don't know till I open it if it's one person letting me know they appreciated that one fic I never liked very much, or if it's a super-popular day and there are a whole bunch. It's nice.

(This post brought to you by PMS and the fact that it's winter. You're welcome.)

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