I found my current awesome mare by responding to an ad for another horse on CL. He was too tall for me, and the seller's dad owned my mare and was thinking about selling her. It took forever to find her and get the deal done....about a year. To make room for her, I sold the one that didn't work out for me, via horsetopia.com, I think. When I was selling, it honestly never occurred to me to look at the 'wanted' ads on CL. I'd also suggest putting word out at your vet's, area trainers, and stables, saddle clubs and so forth. Most horse people around here know when the good horses are for sale, especially if it's the really good horses that they want to find a good home and are negotiable on price. I found some great leads through the chair of our local breed association.
There are a lot of horses out there and you will find one! Don't give up, and don't let the trash talking on CL get you down.
I think it's great that some of the experienced sellers/buyers on HF are willing to help you wordsmith your ad so that you get the attention of the seller you want to attract - you should let them take a swing at it!