Thursday, February 17, 2011

A Good Night Sleep for Sissy Connie

Ever have one of those captions or stories that you wrote and you just can't WAIT for people to see it? The anticipation that makes you shiver, because you think you've made something that will hit not only the recipient's buttons, but a BUNCH of innocent bystanders. You just KNOW that some people are going to start up a religion devoted to you because of how beguiling your creation is?

Well, I thought all those things for this caption I posted above.

The post has been viewed 375 times since I posted it on December 27, and the caption inside was viewed 102 times. That means only 1 out of every 3 people that opened the post actually read the caption. Only one person, the recipient, actually replied. I can only assume it was posted when most people were still buzzing from the post Christmas rush.

Well, strike that. I think I know the reason why it wasn't as accepted as I thought it would be.

It probably isn't the type of caption you expect from me. What I wrote is in demand by certain people, but those people probably don't associate me with this type of caption and ignored it. Then, the people that DO LIKE my style saw this and said, "Ummmm, what the hell Dee? Where is the funny inside joke or snark that you litter your captions with?"

Well, it was me that wrote it, and I am still pretty happy with it. At the time, I thought that this might be one I made that many people would request as a retro-fit re-caption that I do from time to time (aka I replace Connie with their name to personalize it for them, which I do for comment rewards or donations.)

I was going for a "Romance Novel" feel for the prose, but filter it into a Haven sensibility. I held back a tad with the "her nostrils flared, as Drake felt the very core of her womanhood" but not by too much. If I had decided to make the text smaller and elaborate more, it most likely would have appeared, but I didn't want to really "cheese it up" because I wanted it to feel like it was coming from an actual turgid novel.

I had the picture first, and that is what inspired the words. The fact that she wasn't too busty, and the face was a bit obscured helped the caption out by being realistic to a she-male caption, and to me, it LOOKS like the cover of a paperback romance novel.

DISCUSSION QUESTION: What variables do you think most decide whether a caption is commented upon and seen, or ignored? Is it the timing of when it was posted? Reputation of the Captioner? Pre-known preferences of the one receiving the trade? Shit luck? Feel free to talk about the actual caption as well. Maybe you have an idea why it didn't catch on as well as I thought it would.


  1. This is the type of question I am always toying with. What makes a caption "pop?" I've personally dealt with that very same struggle you described here and it can be frustrating. I even touched on it in a recent post on my blog but didn't get into it like this.

    I think there are a few factors that go into things:

    Caption style/look
    Preference to text style/story

    Picture - It's a given that the picture is perhaps the most important element of the caption. They are visual in nature so they have to catch the eye. The right picture or pictures can get people to stop and pay attention.

    Caption style - back when I first started doing captions on the haven, only a handful of people were focus on visual presentation. As much as I love writing a good story, I wanted my own captions to look pretty. Now people are using comic life and you have others who use paintshop pro and photoshop with amazing results. It's easier to make a caption look solid. It's not a slam dunk but it can go a long way.

    Preference - some people write in a certain style or they tell stories in ways others can't. Some people are more original and/or more elaborate. Some people come looking for a long story while others only want "He became She." Captioning is just another outlet for a kink and some people's kinks require very specific elements to keep them interested. You may have written an amazing story about someone being possessed by a ghost and turned into a girl, but if I only came here to view bimbo caps about boys who turn into big-breasted sluts then I'm passing you by.

    Timing - everyone has different time tables to view captions. Some people only get little time, while others get to view whenever they want. It also depends on WHERE you post and what time. The haven seems to have "peak times" when there is heavy traffic. Sometimes I've posted during those times and gotten a more of a response then expected. Other times, I've posted and gotten a chilly response.

    Reputation - you touched on this in your post: if you tend to stick with certain elements, then you become known for them. If people feel they will get one or two things from you, then that's what you're known for. It's just the nature of things.

    But a big truth no one wants to admit is there is a little blind luck involved. Sometimes a caption just hits. I've scratched my head when I posted something I thought was substandard and watched people eat it up. I also think there is a level of advertising that works in your favor along with consistent posting. If you make captions only sparingly then it's easy to get lost in the noise.

  2. Dee, great cap! I hate to admit that I saw it at the Haven, but didn't comment on it. You know me... I'm still struggling to comment more often. I do love that image and the story is a great surprise from you.

    I was going to write up a long reply to your discussion question, but I see that Mistress Simone beat me to the punch. I agree with everything she says.

    Specific to the Haven I'll add another though. Who you are posting it for. I don't get on the haven nearly as often as I would like anymore and no longer look into everyone's folder to see what is new. When I look at caps, I look into people's folders that share some or many of my own preferences. I find that I have a higher chance to see a cap that I like that way.

  3. @ Simone

    We might've had this conversation before, because you did a great job mentioning all the things I had thought about.

    Only thing you hadn't mentioned in regards to timing is that sometimes people will do a "carpet bombing" of comments, which can overwhelm the "latest postings" board sometimes.

    @ Caitlyn

    I really should try to do a survey sometime on how people find captions on the haven.

    I always go to the side bar and click on the "Show new replies to your post" and wade through that.

    THEN, I will click on the "Show unread posts since last visit" .. then wade through there, making sure I mark everything read once I am done.

    That way, each time I pop on, there is only a few pages of new postings and I can keep an eye on the Haven that way as well.

  4. I had a big give-a-way going on during the holidays, but it didn't go over to well. I think it's mostly because of the time of year that I only got 3 people for it, even though the giveaway was holiday themed.

    But the other thing I noticed, was some people would cap me, and then cap someone else! That automatically would have gotten them into my giveaway, but they didn't follow the rules so I couldn't give them 3 captions, Even though the hard part (making 2 captions, one for me, and one for someone else.) was already taking care of.

    It was a couple of people that skipped it over, and one of them even shares many of my own interests.(Petra) I'm not sure why she skipped it, but just because we share a lot of the same prefs didn't change anything.

    Of course a give-a-way being skipped is different then someone skipping a caption you have made, but this was sort of like skipping 3 captions at once that are made just for you.

    I'm almost always at the haven so I keep an eye on it for most of the day and even most of the night till the wee hours of the morning.. But even though I have a more hands on account of posting habits, downtime, etc. Still, I can't tell you why some caps take off and others get next to nothing. *shrugs*

    It's happened to me a lot and you just can't assume one caption you made will get a ton of comments/views.

    For example, my Jennifer story line was getting 4000 views a day and at least 3 comments for each one, but at the haven? over 100 views for the topic and way (WAY) less for anyone that actually clicked on the captions and read them. I got 2 comments for it and both of those were friends trying to encourage people to read it over at the haven. No one did, even though it's (apparently) one of my best captions to date.

  5. Another thought that entered my dizzy little head is what people are really looking for to comments.

    The only thing I ever look for is a thank you from the person I posted the cap for. If they want to tell me they enjoyed it, or that it was a good cap, that is icing on the cake. And of course when more people come in to give compliments and such, that is really appreciated to. But I don't let praise, or lack of praise dictate to me if it was a good cap or not. There have been some that I just phoned in. The story may be long, but it doesn't flow very well. And the design is just so-so. Even if people tell me they like it, I still don't.

    And the opposite would apply if it ever happened: If someone doesn't like a cap that I make (and they tell me about it), I would just take it as either constructive criticism, or at worst as someone who doesn't' see eye to eye with me.

    About the only time I got upset is when I posted a cap, and didn't receive a think you. If the person didn't like it, I wish they would tell me. I could have gone in for another try and made them something that they would like. And even if they didn't want to admit that they didn't like it, they could still acknowledge the effort put in.

    I know some people aren't as confident of their caps, and do need that encouragement. I hope that I hit them up with a 'good job' occasionally. The one way to get me to comment (assuming I've seen the cap) is to do something that I haven't seen before. It can be with layout, photo selection, or story. But I just love seeing something really 'new'.

  6. @ Caitlyn

    I would like to say that I am not really "upset" with the lack of comments more than I am "shocked" that I didn't get more comments.

    It is mostly due to the storyline that I expected people that really dug the "red heels" caption I had done .. would definitely be on board and VERY MUCH into this one.

    I also agree about the encouragement. I like to think that I was instrumental in getting quite a few people really involved in captions, including you and Petra. Also, Bren and I joined about the same time, and we learned what the Haven and the trade area were about as newbie buddies, and things blossomed from there.

    If it came down to it, I'd much rather have someone post to a new posters caption than mine. I already know that I rock! LOL

    @ Jenniger

    We've had a bit of a discussion about this on IMs a few minutes ago, but for those not there (ie everyone else) I think that you will get more comments on your blog with that Jennifer series than you will on the haven since to me it is a very personal set of captions. People that know you and like your stuff are very much into it.

  7. I quite liked this one; I am new to this blog, but I thought it was quite a sweet and sexy little story; her own fantasies of escape are conditioning her further. Very sexy.

  8. @ Dee

    I already mentioned this earlier, but I thought I would bring it up again. People going into the Jennifer story line didn't know it was a little bit personal, people didn't even read the captions to find out and then not comment.

    My whole point is That it was a very well received series on my blog and proved to be popular before I posted it, but still got next to nothing on the haven even in terms of views for the thread. No one bothered with it to even find out it was somewhat personal.

    And thanks Dee, It is personal and it's gone over very well on my blog, I'm not disappointed really with how it's done on the haven though. But I will probably just keep future Installments blog exclusive. I was just offering my caption as an example of commenting habits on the haven.

  9. @Jennifer -- I'm sorry Jennifer if you took my lack of participation in you holiday giveaway as a slight. That was not my intention at all. I don't much like participating in cap giveaways. I can't really explain why, they just seem to affect my creative process in a negative way.

    In addition to that, I think the cap I gave you in December was one that I owed you. I really don't like giving owed caps as part of a giveaway. That's just my personal feeling on the matter and is in no way a judgement on others. I hope you aren't too upset with me.

    @Dee -- I think there are a lot of factors that go into whether or not a post gets comments. Simone covered the big ones quite well. I would add that the image has a great amount to do with it. As you noted, only one in three people who looked at the thread even opened the image which is a bit odd. The image is sexy and provocative, but it isn't (as you say) "spank-material" so I think that some people see the thumbnail and move on.

    I have found that many of my most commented caps are ones where the image is definitely in the "spank" realm. Now granted a lot of those comments are things like "hot" and "nice" and "sexy," but since I crave feedback in almost any form I don't mind.

    Another thing I have found is that the title can do a lot to draw people in. No offense, but the title to this one is a little blah. The "sissy" aspect definitely perks up my eyeballs, but the rest of it leaves me a bit lukewarm. "A good night sleep" just doesn't convey a lot of intrigue about what's gonna happen. Again, no offense intended, I'm just stating my opinion.

    I personally don't spend a lot of time considering the title of my caps before I'm posting them on the Haven. There have been a few where I've gotten clever or creative or naughty and those do seem to be a bit more popular than the others. It's a fine line though. If every cap title had the words "sex" or "blow-job" in it, then we would all become bored by the terms.

    Anyways, that's my 2 pence.

  10. @ Petra

    I'm not upset at all, I shouldn't have mentioned you by name, It never really upset me. I understand not wanting to enter some give-a-ways or not being able to. It's one reason why I left the give-a-way open, the only holiday theme aspect about it was the idea to inspire gift (caps) giving. (one for me, one for someone else, and 3 for you.)

    It may have been one you owed me, but the only reason I brought it up at all is because I think our prefs match up pretty well. One of the reasons brought up in this discussion was peoples prefs playing a part in if they comment on a caption or not, The give-a-way is not the exactly the same thing, but it did show that prefs didn't play a part in getting peoples attention all that much.

    I do think it was because of the holiday season that it didn't go over very well. But when the whole purpose is to inspire a little gift (captions) given and its better suited for the holidays.. Not much I could do about that.

  11. @Jennifer -- whew, glad you weren't upset ... I was afraid that you were going to have to punish me. That would be so terrible ;)