Fiverr Forum

My First 1.7 Rating. I Need A Hug or a Kick in the You know what


7 days ago or so a client ordered a plot from me. Now if anyone looks at my profile they will see that it says in bold “I Will Plot Your Bestselling Novels In Different Niches of Romance.” Typically I only do contemporary or historical romance because that’s my forte but every now and then, I get the odd client who doesn’t read and order something different.
This client ordered a plot from me and then afterward the information he sent suggests the book he wants to be written is actually a mystery book with a female spy. My order completion rate is 90% so I say that’s fine, I’ll help him out. (My policy when it comes to an unfamiliar genre is that clients would contact me and I’d tell them not to order. I’ll still write the plot, have them look at it and if that’s what they want, then they can place their order). Because he ordered first, he didn’t have that luxury.
Anyway, I wrote his plot. The plot gives the client 3k words as is stipulated in the gig. Now anyone who knows writing, knows that sometimes it goes over. When this happens, I don’t charge them for the extra but I feel I am within the right to submit the 3k words once it’s completed. After all, the client is paying for it. It’s on me. When I submitted his 3k words, I did so on time. He acknowledged that I submitted it on the deadline (hello, it’s still on time). When I submitted, I told him straight that we’re at the 3k words but I’ve a lot more I want to add to the plot and then I leave him a synopsis of the ideas I would include so he knows where I am heading. I ask him, please check and let me know if this is what you had in mind (before I waste my time writing 2k words more that he’s not paying for). I sent him that message the day I submitted his plot. He came online several times and I still saw he didn’t respond. I didn’t want the project to autocomplete with his money (in the case he didn’t like the plot and I would have canceled). I sent him another message, hello, please let me know if the plot is to your liking so I know if I should continue with EXTRA words (he’s not paying for) or in the event he doesn’t, I cancel the project. Client did not respond. Even though I saw him online and I saw him accessing the google doc.
A day after the project autocompleted, client sent me a message that he is unhappy that the plot was not finished and yet it was submitted. I brought his attention to all the messages above and pointed him to the fact that I promised 3k words of plot and 3k word of plot was submitted.
According to him, he was okay with the plot but he didn’t have any Internet to respond to my messages. (How did he access the plot if he couldn’t respond to my messages? Apparently, it’s my fault he didn’t respond to me and so he gave me 1.7 rating and left me a bad review. Of all my 70+ plots written for clients, I’ve never had less than 5-stars. I communicate well with my clients throughout the process which I clearly did with him but he didn’t respond.
I’m bummed. 1.7 rating. This isn’t even an honest rating because I fulfilled the requirements. Communication. On time. He stated the plot was okay for him.


First off - commiserations on the negative but I have to say I can understand the buyer being unhappy with this.

You offer to write a plot but by the sound of it, you write a part of a plot rather than a full plot. Sure, you fulfilled the word count but writing to a word count is a particular skill. Writing 5000 words instead of 3000 is not always over delivering.

I love when writers for certain projects write more than I ask for but other times I have to edit it down to fit what I actually need. For example, if I have a blog where all my posts are 500-600 words but then I throw in a 1000 word piece. That isn’t what my readers like. I am aiming for things people can skim while having a coffee. If the piece is too long it has to be reduced and really, that is your responsibility when you go over.


I understand what you are saying. I truly do and I stated the same to him but this is what I happened:

  1. He got a full plot because the other parts were there just in bullet points.
  2. He did not have any issue with the information delivered as he himself stated that it was okay.
  3. I clearly asked him for feedback, twice over the period of time to see if I was going int he right direction with everything. (I had no problem fleshing out the point format on me for the extra words, but I didn’t want to ‘waste time’ if he didn’t like it and we would just end up cancelling the project.
  4. At every step, I asked him for feedback, even before the time lapse. I begged him, tell me if it’s okay. Just let me know and I’ll write out the bullet point formats even if it will go over the 3k words.

My word count only goes over because of the quality of the piece. Sometimes the plot needs more details because I have to explain the thought process behind an action or even demonstrate what the character might have said for something in the plot to occur.


I’m so sorry this happened to you!

I have a suggestion for if this happens in the future. If they do not respond go on as if they said “yes that’s great, just what I want” and deliver it complete, and as if you know they like what you are doing.

You can’t base a delivery on counting on them to respond to your questions or not.

Here is the problem, as far as I can tell:

This should not have happened. You should have gone on and done the complete thing even if he did not respond.

But he still could have asked for a revision first of what you delivered, rather than leaving a bad review.

edit: After reading his review I see that you sent a message saying you had to finish typing it up, then delivered after the deadline, at which time he was in a place without internet.

Your reviews are so good I don’t think this will hurt your sales at all.


That’s not true. When I sent him the message that I had to finish typing it up, there were 4 hours left on the order. It was delivered on time. For the blank chapters he is referring to with headings, when I write my plots, the first thing I do is to create the chapter outlines with headings of what should be in each chapter. Sometimes in writing that story, the chapters change, so those chapters were no longer necessary. That’s why they were at the end of the document.

It could be considered a complete plot because I summarized the end for the next 3 chapters. It was there on the document, just not in great details as the first 9 chapters. But everything was there to the ending. (He ended up with a plot of 5200+ words instead of 3k words when I expanded those.)

He has the right to leave a bad review if he was dissatisfied with my work and I’ve no qualm with that. But, it wasn’t an honest bad review to ruin my reputation rather than of the work he received. This should not be allowed to happen. Even if you want to give me a 1 out of 5 for service as described and whatever else they grade for, there is no way he should be allowed to give me a 1 out of 5 stars for communication. On our message thread, there are several messages from me alone, contacting him, asking him to respond, even when I saw he was online and I ensured I messaged him at that time. He even admits in his review that he was unable to respond.

I should have recognized the signs before I started working with him, that he would be a difficult client. Immediately after he ordered and I sought information about what exactly he needed to guide me in writing the plot he wanted, he became standoffish. “Like why are you asking me these questions. Figure it out.” I can only write a plot if you tell me what you need.

Communication is a heavy part of what I do. My clients refer to it in their reviews. It’s the reason I’ve never had a revision request. A plot outline is subjective with regards to tastes and likes. I wish I had just canceled when I saw the communication on his end was forthcoming. But yes, I’ve learned my lesson well.


You have excellent reviews. There’s ALWAYS going to be one bad apple. Customers can see that. Of all your 100+ reviews, ONE person had something negative to say.

You delivered your order on time. Gave him more than what he asked for. And based on your account of things, handled things as best as any professional could have. If anything, he may have just earned you a sale because my aunt is in need of a plot and I just found someone who is obviously very capable with strong communication skills.


Thanks for the kind words. It was a learning experience. And a kind word from a recent client made it all better. I realize how foolish it is to get worked up over one bad review It was bound to happen sooner or later I guess, regardless of the care I took with each project. Now to get the next 3 plots I have in order done.


I feel for you. Hope you gave your own feedback on the buyer. I’m sure other buyers will see you did your best.


Crap happens. Got 1 3-star review. You just got to move on :slight_smile: If you know a customer is going to be an issue, it’s not worth soiling your reputation. Again, aim to please your customer. The market decides what it wants, not you.


You have excellent reviews and have still maintained an overall 5.0 star rating.

Many good reviews speak more than 1 bad review. The review wasn’t even saying the work was bad but simply upset with the process of delivering the order - I don’t think someone looking for quality work would let that be a decision factor.

I would change the feedback you’ve left and instead of blaming the buyer for making a purchase explain the error with softer words.


Just forget about this situation. You’r doing good :slight_smile: Do not let anyone to hurt you :slight_smile: Life is good. You’r talanted.


I tried but there is a limit in characters. I had to write short sentences. I’m upset. After I examined everything that went on with the order, I had to wonder if he had ulterior motives from the beginning. 1. My gig is clear that I write only romance. We also spoke to him before he ordered and that’s what he said. He now orders the gig and that’s not romance. Hmm, maybe he misinterprets what romance is so I say guess what, my completed rate is 90% so let me work with him. (First red flag, stop worrying about my cancellation rate and just do what I have to do. So, lesson learned there)

  1. I ask him for information that I can complete the project. That’s the day of the project, the same time he ordered. This was his snarky response “I thought that is what I did when I wrote the little blurb without writing the plot myself”, like the questions I was asking about his preference was asking him to write the plot. I should have canceled then. I even offered him the option. I stated “I am willing to work with you but if you want to cancel, it’s up to you.” Prior to that, I told him, I thought you said this was a romance plot. It’s not and because romance is my comfortable genre, and explained the misgivings I had.

  2. Those questions he did not answer is the reason in the end I sought his feedback before fleshing out the rest of the plot. I had met his 3k word goal and even though the rest was not outlined in detail, they were explained in bullet points. (Another confusing part. He said in the middle of our argument, I wanted a plot, not for you to write the story. I assume he is referring to the summary of each chapter. Okay then, why are you arguing about the bullet points that were made for the rest of the chapters?. I even sent him a sample plot to let him see, all my plots written for clients are written with this much care and detai, just in case he thought I just wrote an epistle to annoy him or demand more money when it went over the word count. It’s stated in my gig how detailed the plots are and that’s why clients love my plots.

In all, I sent him 19 messages during the order period, before and after sunmitting work and he sent me 7.

  1. After he finally responded, he said the plot was fine. Then as we spoke and I was explaining why I waited for his feedback, his response was “I could have done what you did.” now suggesting he was displeased with the plot itself.

Hence, looking back at everything, I believe I saw all the warning signs and should have reacted to it much sooner than later. The order was doomed to fail from the beginning.

It’s a part of life. I live and I learn. Now moving on to new clients, new orders, new reviews. Two more, all 5 stars which I received today. Life is good despite.


Thread closed by request - its purpose was served :slight_smile: