I’ve been watching the ABDL story scene for a while now. And there seems to be a decline in this area. Either that or everyone’s posting somewhere else.
ADISC suffered a dearth in its stories forums when they did their overhaul. The Stories forum was made private such that only logged-in members could view them, and many of the good quality older stories got removed. Was it necessary to do a blanket deletion of all the stories just to weed out the stories containing underaged characters?
The mods themselves have mentioned that underaged people were barred from the site only on a just-in-case basis. So they may have their reasons for it, but overall, it caused a loss in many good stories. The good thing is, many people reposted their stories. The bad thing is, after the initial hype died down, there were fewer contributions. Today, there are but a few regulars frequenting that forum, way quieter than during its heyday. There are good stories and good writers, but there are poorly written stories as well.
Then there is the abdl story forum (ASF). As far as I can tell the mods didn’t do any major tweaking, but the effect the same is with ADISC – few regulars, few stories, some are rotten potatoes. From what I see, it’s been a slow decline over there at ASF. They used to have story competitions, but they have been discontinued in the previous few years due to lack of participation.
Having said that, they are having another go at it. They’re hosting a Halloween story writing contest, with separate categories for scary and non-scary stories so if you want to warm yourself up for NaNoWriMo, do give it a shot!
There’s the Daily Diapers forum but I haven’t been scanning through that. And then there’s ABDL Stories Homestead, where many stories are very very similar to each other. Let’s not forget Deviantart, which mixes in artwork with storytelling. Deviantart as far as I can tell from an outsider, is doing well with regards to the ABDL scene. But that’s because people want to see pictures.
Which leads me to wonder, why?
The thought that comes to mind is the proliferation of social media. For us ABDL’s, that would mainly be Tumblr, Instagram and Snapchat. With varied content available on these platforms, people are able to interact directly with each other, but at a cost – girls are getting harassed. Guys hiding behind a keyboard are spewing filth at these people(girls and guys), just because they can be anonymous. Sure, it is just a small group. But these so-called ‘content creators’ will tone down as a result, and then everyone suffers.
But back to the topic of ABDL stories.
With these social media platforms offering netizens more of what they want to see, traditional forums and story forums are seeing a decline. Which is what I think is the main cause of the decline in stories – the lack of forum users leads to a lack in stories. A lack in stories leads to the lack in members critiquing. A lack of discussion then leads to authors changing their platforms. I know of at least one writer who has experienced this, and I’m that person.
Beyond that, we must acknowledge that people are also seeking to publish their writings online, either in e-book format or in other pay-to-view arrangements. With e-publishers like Smashwords, Amazon, Lulu and others, it is very easy to go online. Reaching readers can be a problem but otherwise the monetary incentive is a big draw for authors who have that calibre.
While I’m not expecting a total, irreversible decline of the story forums, that is what it is looking like now. The thing is, we can’t force people to write. Like any creative work, it takes time and mood to concoct a good story. It would be easy for me to say ‘hey, just organise a competition with attractive prizes and people will participate’, but as noted, participation rates are low.
Ultimately, the motivation to write comes from the demand that readers supply. Some write for fun, but arguably the best things come from author and auteurs who receive renumeration. #rowling #spielberg
NaNoWriMo is coming in 2 months. If not for my uni exams, I would be taking part in it.