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  1. Max Vantage
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    Max Vantage Banned

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    Time for an update?

    Discussion in 'Bi-Weekly Short Story Contest Archives' started by Max Vantage, Jul 2, 2007.

    Although having a weekly writing forum is not a new concept in itself and which exists on just about every other writing forum, when I suggested we have one of our own I pretty much meant it for the purpose of not only getting into the habit of practicing to write regularly and within a deadline but also for the main purpose of practicing certain techniques, i.e. one week we are given a basic story idea/plot which we (the members who wish to participate) use to practice foreshadowing.

    The next week we are given another basic story idea/plot to use to practice structure.
    The week after that, dialogue.
    The week after that we focus on theme.

    And so on and so forth while we go through the whole spectrum of writing technique which we then repeat the cycle when deemed necessary.

    Those who don't want to write but participate in some way can develop/sharpen their critting techniques to the stories submitted.

    What ye fink, time for an upgrade to this ghost town?
     
  2. Gannon
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    Gannon Contributing Member Contributor

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    An idea that's got potential for sure, let's see what others think. Are you advocating its running concurrently with the existing competitions as an alternative challenge or as a replacement upgrade?
     
  3. Sayso
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    Sayso Contributing Member

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    I think it's a very good idea though I'm not too sure how many would want to take part.
    I wouldn't take part because I don't like putting stories on forums and secondly because my writing pretty much sucks at the moment (perhaps this is what I need:().
    I'd be interested to see how things go and then maybe (big maybe) I'd join in a bit later on.:)
     
  4. Daniel
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    Daniel I'm sure you've heard the rumors. Founder Staff Contributor

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    Back in the day that's what this forum was originally for. It was led by Spherical Time, who hasn't been here lately. Moreover, there wasn't much interest when the weekly tasks where there.

    Max - if you'd like to take charge and post weekly tasks/jobs/ideas/techniques, that'd be okay. Or if someone else would. Feel free to PM me to discuss it if you'd like.
     
  5. Max Vantage
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    Max Vantage Banned

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    Maybe a bit of both? Although considering that there are many new members of various experiences signing up almost daily there's a possibility that many would like to participate but maybe feel a little put off with the competition element. I know it did me.

    Also, should we change the format to maybe a monthly assignment theme rather than a weekly comp? I know I'd like to continue doing this but found the weekly-based writing prompts got a bit too much in terms of time constraints. A standout benefit of doing this monthly or even fortnightly/three weekly is that members are given time for things like research if they need it and time to write a fully shaped story instead of rushing. It's a benefit at least.

    I think everyone should have a chance if they have some ideas to keep this part of the forum consistent.
    I was thinking of a certain format where, for example, if the member constructing the assignment of the month (or whatever frequency) were to focus on, say, setting (time/place/space) they would give a brief example of it and maybe a story or a film they've read/seen that illustrates it.
    Then the member would post the story idea and any that wold like to participate would go and write their story.
    If we keep the competition element then whoever is voted the winner would then be the one to make the next assignment ('cos I sure know I wouldn't want all this heaped on my shoulders only! :eek: :D ).

    Example:

    At first the above approach may be incredibly naive, but just as long as anyone can see the benefits of doing regular assignments then it doesn't really matter if those who are new, improvers or advance takes part as it's meant to just help writers be aware of techniques. Not every award-winning writer will ever use every single element in their stories, but it's just for the purpose of exercise.
    Those who are responsible for a particular assignment do not necessarily have to have a profound understanding of a particular element of a story. What they can do is read up and give a basic idea from a tutorial they’ve read from information resources etc.

    Another example could be like this:

    The point of the above exercise is to get writers to understand a basic working knowledge of researching the industry of the short story market and who reads them so when/if they come to write short fiction they’ll have at least an understanding of who they’re writing for in order to help increase they’re chances of success.

    The above are just a few examples of how this part of the forum can be updated.
     
  6. Learning to write.
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    Learning to write. New Member

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    Hi Max. I have just found this forum, and know NOTHING about writing, but love reading. I supose if you gave a brief explanation of what you require from us newbie's. Joining in wouldn't be so frightening. Tracy.
     
  7. Torana
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    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

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    Actually Max that all sounds really good. I think we could do something along those lines and maybe lengthen the short story contests. I will discuss it with Gannon and see what he thinks. He is now a moderator in the weekly writing group as well.

    Thank you for your insight it is greatly appreciated.
     
  8. Gannon
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    Gannon Contributing Member Contributor

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    Like I said way above, this certainly has potential. I will try to incorporate your ideas into the competition. What I have in mind is to first try and gain entries because some weeks we are quite short. I don't want to put anyone off by introducing a technique to try.

    That is not to say that it isn't a decent idea. I will attempt by testing the water to introduce it in some capacity. Perhaps simply to begin with, for example all writing in the first person one week, third person the next.

    The most important thing in this competition I believe is exactly that: that there is competition. I would like to pick a topic which encourages entries and thus writing under whatever guise rather than scare off newbies or established members with that which they or I might not fully understand.

    A careful balance will have to be struck, time will tell how successful a striker I manage to be.
     
  9. Torana
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    Torana Contributing Member Contributor

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    Gannon that sounds like an excellent idea I must say. I am definately interested in seeing how this turns out.
     
  10. Gannon
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    Gannon Contributing Member Contributor

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    First contest I have now posted I have decided to just run a them. Techniques and the like might put people off to start with so I intend to run a technical theme from time to time to try and placate everyone. This is a rolling process always open to improvement and suggestion. Week one is very much a trial. Thanks for your patience and understanding.
     
  11. Gannon
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    Gannon Contributing Member Contributor

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    I intend to post a longer deadlind on the next competition to encourage entries and a more pointed topic. I think this week's topic is a bit open and isn't and won't encourage your creative juices to flow. I am still considering the element of technique and how that can be incorporated into the contests. This as I said is a learning curve while I get acquainted with the contests and how best to run them. I thank you for your patience.
     
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