November 3rd, 2011


Green Room - Week 2 - Day 7

Tonight is the night! Our first "real poll" of the season will be closing, and the first contestants will be eaten by lions crossing over into the Home Game. is where that decision is going to be made, so I highly suggest that you go there, and make sure your voice is heard.

The first vote tends to be one of those that get your attention. Not just because it suddenly becomes "real" that we will be losing people in the process - but because there tends to be so many contestants, that getting lost in the shuffle is all too easy. Which means they have the risk of ending up on the bottom by the time those polls close.

Which means that it becomes even more important to let people know what they are missing!

You stumble across a new band you love - you let your friends know about a particular song, or try to drag them to the show. You rave about a book you just read, or a new restaurant you just happened by and decided to stop in. This is the same principle at work - if you believe in it, and don't say anything, you can't be surprised if no one else does.

I wish that I had more to talk about today. Like switching up tribal alliances or something. ;)

But right now I'm focused on just how much fun I am going to be having with you with Week 3, and how Tribe 10 is going to be formed. :D! Looking forward to it.
Idol8 wheel

Results - Week 2

Now comes to worst part of the job.

Unfortunately, we have to say goodbye to people at the end of each week. It always sucks, but the first round of eliminations are a little bit more so, because these are usually people who were just getting started. Community Only voting has a long and storied history of producing unexpected results. I think this qualifies as continuing that trend.

Looking at the list, there are people that I know and like quite a bit - as well as some newbies that I was just getting to know.

Almost all of the votes came down to a couple votes. Which I think says a lot about the writers this season, and the tough choices ahead.

It certainly says a lot about the people who had to courage to step up and try something that a lot of people "out there" say that they are going to do, but never actually do. Stepping up to the plate and taking a shot at putting themselves out there.

That's a huge accomplishment right there. I certainly hope that we will see all of you in the Home Game (continuing to write on the topics, and linking them in the Green Room so people can enjoy them without the voting aspect).

Leaving us this week are:


You never know what is going to happen next with Idol, and there is certainly a precedent for people to come back into the competition at latter point.

There are two other tribes with results on the line, with two very different situations.

In Tribe 8, for those who missed it, witchdollie sacrificed by dropping out during a poll. This means that no one else in that tribe will be eliminated.

Tribe 7 is a different story. There we had a tie:

Early this season, we are going to handle those a little differently than we had in the past - you will not be writing an extra topic at this point during a tie-breaker. However, you will be placed in a special tie-breaker tribe where you will go head to head. Think of it as our Redemption Island. :)

All in all - a rough week for voting, but wow, what a great week for reading. I hope that everyone found some new favorites - and highly encourage people to go back and read those leaving us today, to see what you may have missed.
Idol8 wheel

Topic - Week 3

I'll come out and say it - this is a shitty topic.

It came up in a conversation over the break and I realized immediately that I really was looking forward to seeing how you were going to polish it.

Seriously, it's without a doubt, the biggest load of old school crap that I could pile onto you in Week 3.

The topic is


The deadline to link your entries back to this thread is Monday, November 7th at 9pm EST (note the time change back to "standard" this weekend)

Have fun!!

Work Room - Week 3

Welcome to the Work Room for Week 3.

I originally planned to have someone new here as a Mentor. But they needed a little more time, and this week of all weeks I didn't want to leave you hanging without some sense of guidance. Especially with this as the new topic

Well, I could have - but I figured that I would be nice. So I invited Tea back for one more week. Thanks Tea for agreeing to help out!!


Btw - That "10th tribe" I mentioned in today's Green Room is not the "tie-breaker" tribe. The 10th tribe is going to be formed by your own actions. The first 3 contestants to link thieir entries on each page of the topic thread will be moved to the new tribe. (unless they are in the tie-breaker tribe, in which case that bar moves accordingly) So it is completely your decision on who is, and isn't, going to be a part of the new tribe! I'm putting your future in your hands, let's see what you do with it!


But that's not why we are here - Once again, here is Tea!!


Ready for the biggest shock of the day?!


I know, right? I bet you can’t believe it. Here’s what happened: I gave all the other potential mentors food poisoning so Gary had no choice.

The past couple of these things I’ve started with some good advice. So today I’m going to start with some bad advice.

One of the worst pieces of advice I know (and you probably know, too) is to “always expect the unexpected.” The problem with this is that if you go around expecting things, they are no longer technically unexpected. Even things like zombie walrus attacks. And then the things you gave up expecting to make room for expecting zombie walrus attacks, like eating scones and having to pay your rent, will suddenly be the unexpected things-- and you’ve now failed at this piece of advice.

Or something.

Perhaps a better piece of advice is this one from the Russian poet, Boris Pasternak.

”Surprise is the greatest gift which life can grant us.”

One thing that I do a lot of for fun is online writing-based roleplay. It’s a lot like dramatic improv, except it’s written down. One person writes what their character does or says, and then the next person writes their character replying. The most exciting thing about it, for me, is that sometimes, someone else’s character will do something I never expected. It will totally throw me for a loop, because of course, I have had the scene and how it will go planned out in my head.

The most important rule of roleplaying is not unlike the most important rule of improv: don’t contradict what your fellow players throw at you. Don’t deny it, don’t try to force it or shoehorn it into what you would rather it be. I was pretty bad at improv back in my high school drama club because there was this boy I had a crush on in the drama club, and I would try to turn all our improv scenes into excuses to make him rescue me from near death or something equally romantic (I thought!) like that. I didn’t contradict the rules I was given, but I tried to force it back into what I wanted it to be, and that wasn’t really much fun for anybody.

Since then, I’ve learned that the best thing to do, and the thing that is usually the most entertaining and fun, is to just roll with the punches. I mean, yes, this is probably a bad idea if the situation you were not expecting is a zombie walrus, but it is a pretty good idea if the situation you were not expecting involves writing on the internet.

In some ways, it can be a great inspiration to let your guard down even more and let your inhibitions go, do something you never thought you would do in a million years. It gives you an opportunity to go in directions that your own line of thinking wouldn’t have taken you in, or to use the opportunity to take the unexpected one step further.

Here are some questions for you to think about, and answer here if you like:
--Do you like surprises?
--What is your initial reaction to something unexpected? Does it change when you’ve had some time to think it over?
--What do you do when you get an Idol topic that confuses you or isn’t what you were expecting?
--What are some things you’ve come to expect from Idol so far? Is there anything you’re worried you might become complacent about?
--Are there things you’d like to see from your fellow writers that would be pleasant surprises?
--Think of some things you could do that you think would surprise your readers. Would your surprises be stylistic surprises? Subject matter surprises? Something else?