March 13th, 2014

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Green Room - Week 0 - Day 3

I've been asking questions over the past couple of days, and I've decided to throw a few more of them out into the general public, just in case someone else was wondering. Consider it an AMA that I'm having with myself! :)

When is the Week 0 poll ending?
Tonight at 9pm EDT

Is anyone going to be eliminated as a result? No.

Then why have it? Because it's good to get you into the habit of posting and seeing how things go before it "counts". Plus, it's good practice for me. As a bonus, people get another little extra insight into you to give them a "sneak peek" on what to expect.

What is going to happen after that poll is closed? The Week 1 Topic will be posted.

When is the deadline for that? Check the Topic 1 post, and I'll tell you there.

Is it time for lunch yet? No. Have a snack or something to tide you over.

When is the deadline for people to sign up? Monday March 17th at 7pm EDT.

When people sign up, can they still write an Intro? Of course they can. They should probably post them to the Green Room of that day though, so that people see them. I doubt many people are going back to the Topic 0 post.

Why did you extend the deadline? Because I want more people to sign up. :)

Will you extend the deadline after that? No. Because after that people start being eliminated. Once the train leaves the station, it can't back up to let people on.

Why can't I post to the community? I assume that I'm not the one asking this, but rather quoting someone. Because I *can* post to the community! Really Gary, you're not making any sense! But assuming this is someone else asking that question - because only certain people have the ability to post something directly to the community: Myself and my assistant. The reason for this is so that you can actually find stuff and don't have a couple hundred people posting, covering up the official information. If you want to say something, the Green Room is the place to go!

What is the "community model"? No one actually asked this, but I was thinking about it in terms of the last question. You post your entry in your space, so your friends and people following your work see it. Then you post a link here. I post a poll and people from here go to your space to read and comment. Then they come back here and vote.

People come into the community from all of those points out there on the internet, hopefully finding new writers in the process, and then come back here to express their opinions on them. Which is why I don't like the concept of "satellite communities" that seem to come up every other season or so. ("why don't you...") Having a group out there just to talk about what is going on here doesn't make a lot of sense! Just come back here and talk at the central hub!! :)

"Everyone seems to know each other. Do newbies stand a chance?" - That's a quote that comes up every single year. In the past 8 seasons, 1 season was won by a veteran. Let me say that again - 1 season was won by someone who had competed before. A better question would be "Do veterans stand a chance?" or perhaps "do men stand a chance?" (one "co-won" a "mini-season" but never a regular one)

On the heels of the last two questions, there is always the dreaded "Popularity" question of "how do you avoid this becoming a popularity contest"?

I assume that you mean popularity to mean something other than "people like you", and since they are dealing with you online, liking you often means connecting with what you are writing. The internet's culture of being the "non-popular kids" makes that a really loaded word. So I'm going to go with the idea of "how to avoid it being friends just voting for friends"? There are a number of different types of voting throughout the season that change things up.

But the best way to avoid that is - Don't do it. Don't just vote for your friends because you like them. When it comes time to encourage people to vote, tell them about other folks that you like - and make sure you aren't just pimping the same people every week! Spread the love around, and encourage folks to find stuff they *they* love as well! Tastes are going to vary, and what you think is awesome might leave someone else cold. It happens.

But if you are doing your part to support what you see as "the best writing" and the person beside you is doing their part, then we're off to a good start.

"I'm not getting the comments/votes that I think my work deserve", what do I do? The first thing I'd suggest is making sure you are going out and commenting on *other people's work*. You love feedback. So do other people. If you don't go out and give it, it's a big crowd. People might not get to you. If you put yourself somewhere that they do see you though (commenting on their entries, having conversations in the Green Room) there is a greater chance that they will pop in to see what you are doing. The ability to interact with your audience and peers is something that every writer needs - heck, it's something that every person needs to have. It's more difficult for some people... but no one is the Green Room bites... well, OK... most of the people in the Green Room bite. Most of them ask for consent first though! ;)
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Results - Week 0

This is the thread where I normally announce who has been eliminated and say a few words about how much they will be missed.

But in this case, no one has been eliminated! :)

So - well done everyone!

Topic 1 will be going up shortly. (there is no commenting in that thread, other than posting the links to that entry, so feel free to come back here, or in the Work Room, to discuss)

Don't forget to let people know that Sign Ups are still open until Monday!

Get them in on the fun too!
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Topic - Week 1

Over the course of the last few months, I would come across something that made me go “That’s an Idol topic!” I’d write it down and move on with what I was doing.

Eventually, I ended up with a collection of things that I really loved, and I hope that other people will have fun with as well.

Then came the process of trying to decide “How do I want to start this season?”

Usually it’s “fun topic first, followed by something that might be a bit controversial”. in either the two or three spot. But did I want to change things up? Looking over the list of possible topics, there were a few that would “set the tone”.

One of them stood out though. I have no idea where I came across it, but I loved the idea.

That word?


I’ll even provide the definition, for those not familiar with it: “From Indonesian, meaning a joke so poorly told and so unfunny that one cannot help but laugh.”

Use it as a creative jumping off point!

(Everyone has 3 byes to use between now and the Top 50, if you wish to use one please declare it here.)

The deadline to link your entries back to this thread is Monday, March 17th at 8pm EDT

Have fun!
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Work Room - Week 1

Welcome to the Work Room.

What is this space? For those who are new, the Work Room is exactly what it sounds like, a little idea from Project: Runway where people can get together and help hammer out/shape their ideas. It’s a place to discuss the craft of writing.

The new topic is up:

What comes to mind?

What is your mental process when encountering something that you may never have seen before? How do you adapt it into something you can use?

Remember that the topics are the starting point of your entry. You don't have to handcuff yourself to them, or throw the actual word itself in. How do you get the essence of a concept while showcasing who you are as a writer?