2012 Forum Anthology Contests

Discussion in 'Writing' started by N. E. White, Apr 26, 2012.

  1. A. Lynn

    A. Lynn Was: "Virangelus"

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    Ahh, and here comes my challenge in these things. :p I'm far too "wordy" for my own good in these short-story situations. But I think it will be a good experience for me in learning how to nip and tuck unnecessary details.

    I think I'll go with the usual main stay of just throwing everything together and taking out the things not necessary for the story to survive. It is, after all, easier to hit the delete button than to add new words in.

    13% through the first anthology, with 1572 words but I've barely just laid out the "theme stated" part. I'm sure I'll have to get my red marker out here.
     
  2. JunkMonkey

    JunkMonkey Registered User

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    Yipee! after sort of thinking about this for ages a couple of characters started having a conversation in my head last night. - This is how my stories usually come about. I hear a snippet of conversation in my head, write it down and then try to work out who these people are and why they are doing what they're doing. I may well be wrong about what they are doing at the moment. I usually am.
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2012
  3. N. E. White

    N. E. White tmso Staff Member

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    Woohoo! Glad to see Vir and JM interested in this project. I'm so looking forward to all your submissions. :)

    I may have another STUPENDOUS announcement to make...but not yet. :D

    I don't know about you all, but this is a lot of fun putting this together. I feel we'll create something we can all be proud of. :eek:
     
  4. A. Lynn

    A. Lynn Was: "Virangelus"

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    15% through my short story so far. At this point, I've gotten so excited about the particular setting that the characters will be in that I've found myself wanting to write this MORE than the Summer Scifi I set out to write. Interesting how that happens.

    TMSO, for the "Wind" portion (and yes I'm thinking way ahead) I have a story in mind, but I'm not sure it's matching the rules of the contest. I'll PM you later.
     
  5. CMTheAuthor

    CMTheAuthor Life is fantastic, yes?

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    Well, my submission is in. Time (and the other SFFWorld members) will tell if I make the cut.
     
  6. N. E. White

    N. E. White tmso Staff Member

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    Howdy, Folks. I'm sensing a problem.

    First, you all keep announcing your submissions. That's fine, but remember, I'm trying to keep the voting anonymous (maybe I should abandon that?).

    Announcing isn't a problem if I post all the entrants at the same time (June 15th), but I'm thinking maybe it would be better to post them as they come in.

    I'm thinking of doing that, becuase I'm thinking of a different sort of voting system. Instead of voting in one thread, with three votes each, I'm thinking more of a rating system for each story. So, each story will have a poll to it, that poll would have options like:
    1. In a few years, you will be awesome.
    2. Needs a bit of work, but I made it to the end.
    3. Time well spent, thank you.
    4. Great story! I'd buy that.
    5. I love it! More, please.

    The three stories that get the most in ratings (points) for each contest, ends up in the anthology.

    This way, all the stories get some sort of rating (that's precious feedback for an author), and I don't have to wait until after the deadline to put the stories up.

    With this approach, however, to keep the anonymity, authors will have to refrain from responding to any ratings/votes/comments that they may get early on in this process.

    What do you all think?

    Deadlines would not change, of course, just the way we vote for the stories. Bad idea, good idea, stick to the plan?
     
  7. A. Lynn

    A. Lynn Was: "Virangelus"

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    Ehh, I don't mind how it's done TMSO. Though I hope by announcing my percentage complete is not foiling any of the anonymity for you. I was thinking I'd write, finish, then I'd give it to you, and you'd post it when you were good and ready.


    (At the risk of carrying on my crime, 20% complete)
     
  8. JunkMonkey

    JunkMonkey Registered User

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    Out of curiosity, virangelus, how do you know it's 20%? I only know a story is finished - when it's finished. There comes a moment when I just know that 'that's it'. Often what ends up on the screen is vastly different from what I started out with. Sometimes what I thought was going to be a story ends up as a cartoon.
     
  9. Wilson Geiger

    Wilson Geiger Greymane

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    TMSO, not sure I like that, as that potentially penalizes someone who can't submit until closer to the deadline. Someone who has their story posted now, compared to later, will potentially have a lot more points built up by the time polls are closed.

    I don't mind the point system, as long as all stories are revealed together.
     
  10. N. E. White

    N. E. White tmso Staff Member

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    Okay, I will expose them all at the same time, but will muddle over the idea of voting vs rating. :)

    I'm not virangelus, but I do the same thing. I guestimate how long I expect a story to take. I also outline, so that gives me a good idea how many words a story might end up at. For each major plot/story point, I figure I'll have a scene. Each of my scenes range between 1,000 to 2,500 words, more or less depending on how much description I use. I add up the scenes and times that by an average. It doesn't always work, but it gives me something to shoot for.
     
  11. JunkMonkey

    JunkMonkey Registered User

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    Sounds very organised. I start in the middle and work outwards. (Which is probably why I so rarely actually finish anything.)

    Personally I like the 'put all the entries up at one go' approach. Apart from anything else, I think it might put me off entering if I read three stonkingly brilliant stories using a similar theme to my entry before I had finished writing it.

    And

    If stories start going up one by one, discussions will start and it will soon be obvious who wrote what and any possibility of anonymity is out of the window before you can say 'Jack Robinson'. (Damn! my cliché bins are getting empty, I need to stock up.)

    I have just edited a previous post of mine to make it less obvious which is my story when they are put up.
     
  12. CMTheAuthor

    CMTheAuthor Life is fantastic, yes?

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    All apologies, tmso, although I didn't see a problem with maintaining anonymity while knowing which people were involved.

    After all, unless some of us are either master computers hackers or experts of literary analysis AND willing to take the time to do either, its not like we're going to know specifically who wrote what. Ditto on the feedback thing, if it's handled carefully.
     
  13. A. Lynn

    A. Lynn Was: "Virangelus"

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    JM, I'm like TMSO, I am a bit of a planner. When I begin forming a story, I am usually able to "see" the beginning and the end of the story, and then I am also able to see little "moments" here or there, sometimes just conversation, sometimes something else. I then try to organize these "flashes" or these "waypoints" as I call them into a story structure matched against the Hero's Journey or Blake Snyder's beatsheet. As I hit these waypoints during the course of my writings, I can mark "done" on an excel spreadsheet and it calculates percentage.

    :) Yeah, nerdy, I know. But it's holistic enough to let me track based on story substance rather than mere word count. Also, it makes my left brain feel quite happy to have that number, rather than feeling like it's stuck in the chaos of my right brain with no end in sight.
     
  14. MrBF1V3

    MrBF1V3 aka. Stephen B5 Jones

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    ..or if some of us are well read, r.e. the styles of the authors involved. No system is completely fool proof, so if any of you want to 'open your gifts before Christmas' you could probably find a way to do so. The question is; is it worth it?

    I've finished a rough draft and am entering the time of editing. That means I'm approximately 7.3451893% done.

    B5
     
  15. Sarunus

    Sarunus Registered User

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    I'm a "sort-of" planner. For shorter works, I put out a loose plan, really not much more than an origin and a destination for my story (as I work only in linear plots for now). If it's FF or a short story, I don't usually write it down. After that I'll just fill it in from there.

    Wow. I might be the opposite. Once I've finished my first draft with FF or a SS, I'm 92% done. I'd be curious to see how it breaks down for most people. Methinks I could do with a greater emphasis on editing.
     
  16. JunkMonkey

    JunkMonkey Registered User

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    Not to mention the variety of English we are using.

    Which is a point, TMSO. If authors from say Britain and the USA both win through, will you standardise/standardize the local variations of spelling throughout the book?

    I just need to get mine proofread and I'm done. I hope. I'm fed up with it and I'm just fiddling about taking commas out and then putting them back in again. Usually a sign I'm done.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2012
  17. MrBF1V3

    MrBF1V3 aka. Stephen B5 Jones

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    Um... what's a comma?

    I would personally suggest not worrying too much about standardizing spelling in something like this. It may lead to a certain kind of editor anxiety.

    I may have been overstating how much I edit but I will go over just about everything I write five or six times for various reasons.

    B5
     
  18. Princeroth

    Princeroth Registered User

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    Just chiming in about the cover of the anthology because I have a background in visual design.

    The cover art is really nice but I don't really like the font and how it is positioned.

    I've made a quick mock-up of some of my ideas that would look really nice for your cover.

    [​IMG]

    Font name is LilyUPC. Font colour is an orange which works really well with dark backgrounds, could be lighter or darker. Simple font without outlines looks best, so that is why I repositioned the title and editor.

    No spaces is a stylistic technique to tighten up the text, and make the title bigger without using too much space (makes it very readable).
     
  19. JunkMonkey

    JunkMonkey Registered User

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    Last edited: May 20, 2012
  20. N. E. White

    N. E. White tmso Staff Member

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    Thanks, Princeroth! But for some reason, the image didn't come through. I was able to access it. Maybe it will work this time?

    [​IMG]

    Anyway, I like the color and font (background is filler, right?). The title does pop, but I'm not entirely sure about the lack of space between the letters. When we get closer to the deadline, we can have a cover contest? Anyone game?

    I have another announcement!!! :D

    One of our forum members recently entered the hallowed status of published, and I thought it would be pretty cool to invite her to take the third open slot (remember, we have 9 slots up for grabs with these contests and I've got 3 for published authors I am inviting to join us - for a total as 12 stories). Please welcome, new (un)comic-writer:

    Tristis Ward!

    So, along with Hugh Howey and an author that we'll just call M.S. for now (hint hint), awesome artist and writer Tristis Ward will be joining us in this anthology. For those of you who don't know her, man, you are missing out. Broken Jaw Press published her Bones of the Magus and it is just cool on a entirely different level. I'm SOOOO EXCITED she agreed to submit a story!

    And with that, my friends, I leave you with...

    26 days
    until Friday June 15 2012​