Virgin post :D
Okay, maybe it's odd to open in a rant comm with a non-rant, but posts about good ending to rant topics is okay too :D
You know how we all rant about little glitches, little technical details in stories, things as simple as punctuation and spelling, that can make or break the line between a good fic and a could-be-good one?
A couple weeks ago, I read a fic like that. The plot was engaging. The characterization was awesome. The writer even pulled off bringing in a dead character in a way that was believable and practical and thoroughly in-character. The character didn't come back to life, it wasn't a ghost, it was just a figment of imagination in the character's best friend's mind, and he was carrying on a conversation like he was sitting right there across from him, but at the same time, the figment only knew what the other character knew. This was somebody the character always turned to in canon when something troubled him, to talk things out, and he was still doing it even after death. Which isn't all that strange - a lot of people tend to do that. The smut was great, descriptive without being flowery, blunt without being crude, erotic and hot and well-done.
It was a very enjoyable story -- or would have been if not for some errors and technical inconsistencies in punctuation and so forth.
I praised the writer, and offered up myself as a beta.
The writer actually took me up on it. I just finished the six chapters that are currently written of the fic, and I loved every minute. I pointed out the problems, suggested some stuff about the plot, and among it all, pointed out the parts that really stood out and the things I enjoyed.
It's not my doing. It's the writer's work. It was just such a pleasure to be able to help add a bit of sparkle and shine to something that held so much potential, and to help someone with a true eye for characterization and detail and turn of phrase to grow as a writer. I wish more people could take concrit -- when true concrit is given, not just snippy, blunt critique, but pointing out the good stuff too -- because it so much fun for me to help other people excel and see them really find their voice and niche and shine.
Plus, it helps up the percentage of goodfic out there.
I wish more readers offered true concrit, and more writers took them up on it. Fandom isn't all about bitching and fighting over pairings. The brilliant side of it is where people help each other develop and hone their skills, be it at writing, art, video or icon making, or anything else.
I feel silly for how ridiculously happy it made me to help polish up a good story into a great one so the writer's skills could stand a better chance at being appreciated by a wider range of readers.