It is always morally correct to slam into my DMs and talk about my games to me. How about you?

It is!

Please do this!

Here’s my link!

In an attempt to make this a topic and not just a demand for attention:

If you are an author, do you encourage others to talk about their reactions to your game directly to you? In a more immediate text chat/back-n-forth? Live reactions while doing a blind playthrough? Thoughtful responses afterward through email or some other long-form communication?

Do you prefer reviews or other indirect reactions (indirect being like, bringing it up in conversation in this forum or tumblr blog post, whether or not they @ you)?

Would you rather never hear anyone speak about your game ever because you fear the mortifying ordeal of being known (if so I cannot relate but you are so valid)?

If you are a player, do you enjoy the idea of directly talking to the author about your live reactions, or would you rather keep them to yourself, perhaps writing a review later? Do you hate the idea of talking to the author in a sort of ‘never meet your heroes’ way (odd choice in this community but you are still so valid)?

Or something else?

(It is still morally correct to slam into my DMs and talk about my games to me. Compliments or Critiques.

Just no death threats. That cancels out the morality)


Any and all the above. I don’t even care about the death threats; those just get deleted. I figure people will express how they feel about the game in whatever way is most natural to them.


Maybe after more people have slammed into my DMs to ramble at me I’ll gain an ego of iron and steel and relax my stance on the death threats. Who knows!


I have to ask, how does slamming into someone’s DMs differ from sliding into them? Maybe I’m just a pervert, but I’m totally getting oddly aggressive sexual vibes from the word choice. Does it strike anyone else that way, or is it just me?

Note: Not a criticism, btw, just an amusing observation.


I can neither confirm nor deny.

But really what I mean by that is

  • it’s a funny word choice
  • i associate sliding with “…hey i would like to talk to you…”
  • slamming into DMs is more like “HEY YOUR GAME WAS [GREAT/HORRIBLE/HUH??] LET’S TALK ABOUT IT”

I 100% will email authors and artists and be like “omg this is amazing I hope your day is going well you put a lot of work into this and I appreciate youuuuu”.

The other way around, tho: I am genuinely not used to anyone knowing I exist or acknowledging me in the room at all (other than maybe four people in particular). It’s literally just in recent years that people have confirmed that I’ve participated in their ecosystems, and it’s absolutely wild to me. Like, not really “Eeeeeeeee!! Oh my gawd” or “No, don’t look at me”, but more just genuine shock and surprise.

Like “Oh. I did that. A dynamic is different because I existed.”


I mainly just want to know whether they enjoyed their time or made their day a bit better/interesting.


Both an author and a player. It’s generally a matter of personal proximity to me. The better I know someone, the more comfortable I would be with receiving or initiating a more direct response.

Generally, I’d only show new works immediately to the Goncharov Girlies. They’re all very sweet when it comes to hyping each other up. I do appreciate encouragement or a quote if anything in particular resonated with them, but it’s never required.

The girls usually chat back and forth on a blind playthrough, and afterwards I might ask what their interpretation was, and if they would like, explain mine- not as an obnoxious authority sort of thing, more so to share in amusement and wonder at how things do or don’t translate in a work, as well as context I think might be interesting to surround the piece with.

I would be very uncomfortable with this from anyone else outside of my immediate circle of close friends (so, generally speaking, the Campfire Meows and the Goncharov Girlies, as well as friends from other spaces like the Hephmeows.)

It would feel very intrusive and a bit awkward, especially in a live-time setting like a call or a chat. This is probably mostly because I don’t bring up my games in casual conversation, and I would feel bad about monopolizing a group dynamic and a bit awkwardly put on the spot.

From others, reviews are golden. Indirect reactions (conversations in public venues) are interesting to stumble upon, but particularly if someone is going to spend a lot of time and effort on analyzing or responding to a work of mine, I’d love to see it to thank them and acknowledge the time and energy they put forward. If possible, I like to engage with something from their review too, like a highlight they pointed out.

I have received a few out of the blue messages from regulars I wasn’t as familiar with, but they were generally private (which I much prefer) and weren’t expecting a rapid fire back and forth. I like taking my time with longform responses, if I’m not especially good friends with someone.

As a player, I generally conduct myself how I’d like other people to approach me. So, if we’re close, I’m more than happy to squee over a piece and liveblog my earnest reactions. If we’re not, I’ll leave a rating at least usually, and drop a comment or review with no expectation of future interaction stemming from it.


One of the last poems that I got published was a sestina. It’s very hard to write a sestina that reads like a poem. Usually, the poet makes too many allowances for the form: “I can say this thing that isn’t very poetic because it’s so hard to find something that fits.”

There aren’t a lot of new sestinas published these days. My sestina had a short line length, which makes things harder because you have less time to get to the next “magic word.” I’ve never seen a published contemporary sestina with 8-10 syllable line lengths. They must be out there, but I’ve never seen one.

A lot of people who read it didn’t even realize it was a sestina, which is a high complement. Nobody wants to write a sestina that reads like a sestina.

My partner, Callie, liked it, and someone else I knew commented on it. That was it.

I would have been blown away if someone had written me about either its technical merits or its content (“grief really is a hydrology!”).

I say all this to say that you can know semi-objectively that you’ve done something well without being told. But isn’t it nice to be told? It’s nice to say when you like something, I think. I think it’s good for both the teller and the told.

DMing is an option, and I’ll take it, but rating games and reviewing them are nice ways to go. Rating in particular is a pretty direct and easy way to do things. It’s also nice to see people talk about it here or someplace else. You can do an anon ask at Tumblr if you just have a question. I like those.

There are people here and around the scene that I interact with fairly regularly, and it would be nice to know what they think of my game. I would be happy to hear from them.

I do welcome bug reports, which I consider a different thing. Just be nice about it.


Gosh, I’m finding a lot of quotes on the forum that I could put on a poster.

Time to frame another one!


Gosh I love sestinas and have written a few! I am interested in DMing you to read and talk about yours if you want :eyes: (or email or something)

I have a track record of people saying I give very good and elaborate feedback. I try to put the energy I want to receive into the world, though I receive it less than I give it.


Live reactions while doing a blind playthrough are so great.

The long, thoughtful reactions I’ve really only gotten through reviews here and on IFDB rather than having them sent directly to me, but hey, I still see them and I can still reply to them, so it doesn’t make much difference to me.

I have to say, though, that if someone hated a game and DMed me about that, that would feel pretty aggressive, and to be honest I have trouble envisioning someone doing that in good faith. But I’m always happy to be contacted with positive stuff or questions.


I prefer stumbling upon people talking about the game than getting @'d or DM’d. The latter requires me to be social and I don’t have much energy for that. The former is just nice to see since it’s organic and I can watch what people have to say as an observer.


Drew, poetry isn’t interactive, and if isn’t used in an IF, seems to me natural commenting it in DM (I call it PM…) because are OT. hence I think that receiving unsolicited feedback on own poetry is something to be expected.

On IF, all is about being patient and not anxious, two of my ßtesters have serious issues, and the third, as seems, has RL work to do, so I try to wait patiently, without pressuring.

whose led me to ask about a moral issue: I’m also ßtesting, but the work was well done, aside a pair of minor point, already reported, and the rest, well, was near-perfect. so, I hesitate to report a “nothing outstanding”, whose can be perceived as “laziness”, but OTOH, I can’t report trifle (that is, not even minor) issues only for “face-saving”. “no news is all well” as we say here (Remarque will strongly disagree…). So what I should do about this PM I have to send ? will be disappointing or not ?

Sorry for the long digression, and

Best regards from Italy,
dott. Piergiorgio.


I’m feeling left out that I haven’t received a death threat. Can someone DM one to me? Like, “You perverted my favorite fairy tale into a feminist message and I hate that so much that I will now loose a truckload of puppies on you to smother you in drool.”

My favorite thing was finding playthroughs of my games. But I’ve also received DMs and emails, and that was great. I love praise, but criticism is probably more helpful.

I get bashful. Like, I met Margaret Atwood and I was going to be all cool and make her like me, but what actually happened was I turned purple and said “Eep” and stood there weirdly goggling at her. It was mortifying. I think she’s used to that, though, because she gave me a nice pat on the arm. Probably the same thing would happen if I met Emily Short.


My sentiments exactly.

I’m fairly known on my own Spanish IF scene; to be acknowledged on other communities for me is always a shock: a nice one, mind you, but still a shock.


Me at 2019 Narrascope. Seriously. I met Emily Short and I was So Weird…it was awkward.


I’m always happy for any kind of interaction with my work (even bad reviews make me feel seen) but I’m absolutely terrible about the opposite. I can barely manage to write reviews (although I’m trying to get better about it), actually talking to someone (!!!) about their work would probably give my brain a blue screen of death.


Same thing happened to me when I met Neil Gaiman (although I’m no longer quite as crazy about his work as I was when this happened). He, too, was very gracious about it—I’m sure sufficiently famous authors get that all the time.

Emily Short came to a PRIF meeting about ten years ago and we all went out to dinner with her, and as far as I recall I was fine and normal, but it’s very different in a group.


The more, the merrier, as they say.