It’s Monday, and it’s the first work day back in January for many people (including myself.) In Vancouver, it’s currently grey and slushy, with a mild case of yuck. Cars are slipping and sliding all over town, sidewalks are buried under half-a-foot of slush, and I have to wait another few days for Mats Sundin to join the Canucks. Sigh.
Anyhow, to brighten the mood, I thought I’d discuss a few spiffy features I have planned for release over the next couple of weeks. I’m not sure as to what the order will be, yet, but they’re all on deck for January (aside fromÂ writing circlesÂ â€” which I promiseÂ are on their way as soon as I can getÂ a few niggly issues sorted out.)
A popular request, this one seems pretty straightforward. I’m going to see what I can do about making it happen unobtrusively.
Dead-ends & closing stories
This is, again, another popular request. I thinkÂ the way I’ll be implementing this to start will be the simplest possible method â€” allowing the original authorÂ to close off a story at any point. If it becomes a problem in collaborative stories (which was always a concern I had) and the feature is abused, I’ll have to put in a more elaborate system where allÂ authors in a collaborative story would vote to close a specific chapter/branch.
I think this is something that our former Ficlets authors will be used to, and our existing members will appreciate as well. The ability to save drafts has been in the site from the beginning, but I’ve had it disabled because there wasn’t a good interface for it. I’ll be turning this on and working on a good interface to handle editing and publishing drafts, though it may come in via a phased approach (meaning I’ll probably be working on it and tweaking it over the course of a couple of weeks after I launch the feature.)
Invite a friend
The invite-a-friend form, a feature you see on many other sites, is something I’ve been meaning to build for ages. I keep getting sidetracked by other stuff, so I’m putting it in here to make sure that I get it done. :) It’s something that’s been missing from the site since launch and I’ll be adding it in soon.
Improvements to “My Stories”
I know that the “My Stories” page (which is just a search filter, currently) has been lacking for a long time, so I’m going to see what I can do to spiff it up and make it a little more useful. I’d love for it to become a centerpiece of your writing portfolio, down the line, but for now I’d settle with making it a little easier to use and friendlier to our authors.
Tag, you’re it!
Something I’ve noticed in heavy use on the site since we gained the influx of Ficleteers is the “you’ve been tagged to follow up on this story” comments that people have been posting on each other’s profiles. I’m going to add an actual option to invite someone to follow-up on your stories. I think it’ll make everyone’s life easier and it’ll reduce a bit of the comment spam I’m seeing in the activity feeds right now.
I think that’s it for the time being. IfÂ you have any suggestions for other changes I could make, or additions to what I’ve posted above, please comment here or post over on the Help Center!
Cheers, and happy new year to all of our Protagonists!
Photo courtesy of TylerIngram on Flickr.