Yes, I can understand the excitement of posting a new multi-chapter fic (I'm currently feeling the same way about a different fandom) but sometimes I don't have time to work on it. Sometimes I work on it when I have time; but other times I work on it when an idea srikes me, spare time or no spare time! The problem with posting a fic when you're still doing it is that even if you do have the outline in your head, you never know if something's gonna come up. Real life is random like that, and not having an unfinished fanfic up online eliminates any pressure or guilt of updating in a "timely manner". Of course, this is all my personal opinion and I understand and even agree with yours. It's just one of the things I've imposed on myself: I shall not read an unfinished multi-chapter story, no matter how many rave reviews it gets. Plus the CSI fandom has alot of one-shot fics. And your pet peeve is a good one. Characters don't belong to the fic writers; they merely borrow the characters to produce something interesting/entertaining. Just because they love a character, doesn't mean their interpretation of said character is the only explanation for their actions. As has been said previously, grammar and spelling are a must, and a little research is always great. I've never used a beta but that just means I have to be extra careful as to what I write. Sometimes one or two mistakes come through but I like to think that no beta means I keep my spelling/grammar senses sharp (this post, for example, has been revised four times prior to posting). I'm not knocking betas, heck, I may get one for the current multi chapter fic I'm working on for my other fandom, but I guess it's just a good incentive for reading and re-reading my unfinished work, making changes where necessary (and not just technical ones). Microsoft Word is my only beta... although it's not perfect.