Smut Marathon Round 4 Results and Moving Forward

This round of the Smut Marathon has been one of the most trying for many of us, I have to say. But the reason for this isn’t the tasks we were given, but because of what came after. Many took the feedback they received on their entries as a big hit to their self-esteem as a writer. I’ve been talking with several of the other writers all morning on Twitter as the feedback and results were released. It’s stirred me to take a step back and take a closer look at everything going on. But first, I shall reveal my entry to you.

13) Simulated Lover

I stroked myself as I looked down at my silicone lover for the evening. Between it’s two large, pink mounds of badonkadonk I had my choice of holes to penetrate. A choice I already made when I lubed it’s flesh-like vulva. It sat on my bed, facing up at me with the illusion of a lover presenting herself, while I sat in front of it, ready to mount it. I swiped through my phone with one hand as the other groped a silicone cheek. Finding the right video on my phone, I hit play and set it down to watch.

The woman on the video is moaning loudly as she’s bent over in front of the cameraman, who slaps into her ass as his hips thrust into her from behind. Her cries of ravenous pleasure impel me to move my hips forward and penetrate the slick lips of the toy’s opening. Keeping my eyes on the sensual woman on the screen, I thrust into my simulated lover as I imagine her. My hands long to hold her hips, but I grab the sides as I slide deeper. I see the woman get flipped on her back and wish I had been the one manhandling her.

I keep moving my hips into my surrogate girlfriend and feel my pleasure build as she’s penetrated. My grip on the buttocks tightened as I pegged the toy more. The woman changes her expression and cries out as she climaxes in sweet agony. I am almost immediately pushed over the edge and release hot spurts of my cum inside cold, fabricated flesh. As my body releases, and I pull out my spent cock, I silently berate myself. If ever my ex-girlfriend knew I still masturbated to the video I took of her.

I’ll admit, it’s not my best work. But I have been going through a bit of a rough patch over the last month or so. I’m sure you’ve all noticed a lack of posts for a while now. The truth is, I’m kinda struggling to come up with some new ideas lately, and struggling to finish the current ones. So, my full self wasn’t really in this one. In past entries, I felt like I really put a lot of myself into my work, but this round was more of me trying to force something creative out.

As for the feedback, Much of it was kinda negative. I received ten comments in total, and maybe 2 of them were actually positive. The rest were very short and essentially broke down to ‘do better next time’. I have some pretty thick skin and can shake off some tough comments, but others are not so resilient. There were people on both sides who had difficulty reading what others had written about their work, and their self-esteem took some significant damage. On the flip side, there were entrants who felt their feedback was meaner than they intended but admitted to not fully articulating what they wanted to say, or knowing how to give the best feedback they could. Which is why I’d like to create a new post in the near future about giving well-credited feedback.

I’ve also come to another realization regarding the Smut Marathon’s scoring system. Although it’s designed to favor a writer’s skill over their following, it still allows too much room for disfavor. As a reminder, the scoring system is a 50-50 split. Th scores from the 5 judges are divided by 5 to produce the average score, and the public vote is divided the same. These two numbers are added together to create the final score for the round, which is then added to scores from previous rounds to determine an overall score. Every entry gets a minimum of 1 point from each judge, which adds up to 5, and divided by 5 to get 1. In the public vote, the average is rounded up. So even if you get less than 5, you’re still guaranteed 1 point. To sum up, even if you don’t get a single vote, you still are guaranteed 2 points to be added to your overall score each round.

At the end of round 4, 14 out of 34 entries only received 2 points. Nearly half of the people who entered didn’t receive a single vote from the judges, and 5 or less from the public. The next 6 above that saw only one favorable vote from a judge. Taking this along with the mostly negative feedback, some writers are losing all motivation to even try and continue, despite the fact they still scored high enough to advance to round 5, and are withdrawing. This scoring system seems great on paper, as it utilizes a combination of a public vote, and jury vote to determine who wins, but it also creates a very narrow window for advancement. For such a large number of entrants, judges aren’t just giving points to their top 10, they also have to choose not to give any points to the greater majority. This causes many to feel like their work wasn’t good at all, and that’s just not true!

For those who have left the Smut Marathon, and those who are barely hanging on, don’t lose hope. Just remember: Getting no votes doesn’t mean your work was terrible. The window is just small, is all. I had a lot more to say about the assignment and the voting system, but I’m going to leave that out for now. Not because I don’t want to, but because I’m feeling emotionally drained after all the talk on Twitter about bad feedback and self-depreciation. I’m also not going to share the feedback I received as I don’t think it accurately reflects what this competition is about. But if you’re curious, you can always go to the Smut Marathon Round 4 page to see for yourself. Remember, I’m entry #13.

To see a full analysis of the results, you can check out the Round 4 Results page as well.

But the Round 5 assignment has already been sent out, and I was just lucky enough to still be a part of it. To my fellow writers out there: don’t be discouraged by what results may say. It just looks way more critical than it needs to be. You’re amazing writers, and I hope to see all of your entries come June 2nd. Until then!

  2 comments for “Smut Marathon Round 4 Results and Moving Forward

  1. May 14, 2018 at 6:27 pm

    Sorry to hear you’ve been through a rough patch which influenced your writing. As for your words on feedback, there are some posts about that coming up on the Smut Marathon site just before the next voting round. I have read and noted your comments on the voting system.

    Good luck with the fifth assignment 🙂

    Marie

    Like

  2. nbrplaza
    May 15, 2018 at 8:14 am

    The marathon has run for a few years in Te Netherlands, and the point-system has always been under discussion. At first there was only public voting. But some writers cheated and called for their public to vote. To prevent that, and to get at least some feedback, a jury was installed. Also, the current listing system prevents good writers to be voted out after just one lesser story.
    I like your idea of a ‘broader window’, but I’m not sure how that could work. A number from one to ten for each story could work, but I don’t see how this could work for the public votes.
    What I am trying to say is: it is virtually impossible to have a system that is 100% fair for everyone. I think Marie has done her upmost to come up with a (complex) system that rules some of the negative experiences (from the Dutch marathon) out.
    On the other hand, I wished some of the contestants didn’t take it so seriously. In the end, it’s just a game, and only one can win. If you take something out of it, that makes you grow as a writer: great. Use the reviews as tips to improve. But never let anyone tell you you suck at something you like to do. Everyone can sing, but not everyone becomes the next Michael Jackson.

    Liked by 1 person

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