January 25th, 2013

Idol: Exhibit A

Green Room - Week 1 - Day 4

People always ask me “Hey Gary, can you please stop just showing up at my house in the middle of the night with that pickaxe. Please?”

But I ignore them. Because no, I won’t.

The second thing they ask me about though is “What do you look for in an Idol entry?” and that’s a lot more complicated, because it only occasionally involves me standing over your slumbering form wielding a pickaxe.

Over the years there have been a number of things that people have gotten it into your head was “Idolcide”, something that would get your voted out if you did it. And, over the years, most of those things have gone the way of “save the dodo” t-shirts worn non-ironically. Poetry, fiction, meta, non-fiction, all of these have been on the “don’t do it!” list at one point or another. Pretty much everything you can think of, at some point, there has been someone who looks out over the field and has gone “Don’t do that! You will be voted out!”

In every case though, if you look at the people who have broken those “rules” and opened up them up for others to follow, it was someone who *did them really, really well.”

So, that’s my advice. Write really really well. : )

There. Problem solved! You're welcome...

Well, that and avoiding the trap of the “this entry is about” self-awareness. Again, unless you can find a way to do it organically so that it fits with what you are trying to do!

Every entry you post is going to be the first time someone is reading your work. I know it’s crazy, but it’s true. And if you get lost between the moon and New York City, the best that you can do, the best that you can do, is to make it something that will make them want to come back for more! How? Well, why not ask THEM, your fellow competitors as well as assorted readers….

So, Hi there folks:

What have you seen so far this season that you have gone “Wow, that’s great!” and what (not specific people or entries, but rather something that was done writing wise) have you seen that makes you go “Maybe not”?

For me, the Big Two have been “This LJ Idol entry is about….” thing and personal LJ style/font choices that make things difficult to read. The first can be solved by cutting off the first paragraph or so, to get right to the meat. The second I can solve on my end by changing it “view in my style”, but how many people are actually going to do that vs just clicking away to read something else?

Neither of these are *new* issues. They are something that I’ve seen every single year… and sooner or later they are addressed and dealt with. But since we are on a shortened schedule, I figured that I would throw it out there earlier than usual and get the peanut gallery in with some feedeback!

So, what are YOU seeing that you want to call attention to help people out?

What are you seeing that has amazed you?

The poll is currently up: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/612987.html so make sure to get over there, read, comment (people LOVE feedback!) and vote for your favorites!

And while you are on your computer, there are a couple Idolers who have podcasts that I have recently come across! So check them out: http://justafase.com/katiegetskrabby.cfm and http://wwww.wrongopinionsaboutmovies.com/

And while you are in the mood to consume things from Idolers, don’t forget to check out the Idol Store! (featuring books – and a couple movies – from Idol contestants and friends!
Explore the tab to the left, and let me know if I’m missing anything! http://astore.amazon.com/li0cd-20