I'm much older now, so I don't rant about my silent readers from an ugly place anymore. But back in my early AFF days, silent readers had a negative impact on my mental health, and I had to take several hiatuses over the years. It . I was on AFF to escape reality, then the tables me, and AFF drove me away. I lost my safe space and it hurt.
Believe it or not, I was the lucky one, because despite the many silent readers, I had very generous vocal readers. Please understand that AFF writers are strugging to stay afloat. Asking for attention and love for their story isn't a bad thing, and writers shouldn't have to feel guilty about it. Because why would it be when they spend hours on a chapter and then a silent reader reads it in under a minute? Stats and bookmarks don't lie.
I choose to share my stories for free, instead of invite-only because I don't want to discriminate against my readerbase. Believe me, I can recognize silent readers by username because they've followed/subscribed to my stories for years, and I appreciate the out of them for devouring my stories. If my stories were books, , that's an even bigger compliment.
However, what upsets me is when silent readers that I didn't even know existed come out of the woodworks to tell me what to do. That is not constructive feedback.
Silent readers don't intend to be malicious. (where my introverts at?) If they want to read silently, more power to them. Even when they don't comment, they discuss my stories with their friends. I know this, because they eventually come out of their shells and hit me up with a PM. It's happened with RS and TDoJ, and I received some of the best comments/PMs.
So, I kindly ask, if you're engaging with me for the first time, please don't be that reader who contributes little to nothing then expects everything. If you decide to make the leap to support me (or another author), please upvote, comment, and/or promote the story in your feed if you're enjoying it. It would encourage me to keep writing at a steady and healthy pace.
Much love, Cee.
Here's Baekhyun :P