ender.che.13's picture
ender.che.13 from Northwestern U.S. living in the southeast peach. is reading Ken Follett February 4, 2013 - 9:56pm

Thanks, guys. @Jonathan Riley, you actually hit the nail on the head; that was exactly why I asked, because I had lots of votes up, and positive feedback as well as constructive criticism, then a sudden down vote appeared from nowhere without explanation. Se la vie, I suppose.

ArlaneEnalra's picture
ArlaneEnalra from Texas is reading Right now I'm editing . . .. February 4, 2013 - 10:33pm

I've seen that on a couple of stories now. It's stinking annoying to have fewer comments than votes, especially when the votes are down votes. You can't fix things if they don't tell you what's wrong!

Tom Elias's picture
Tom Elias from Maine is reading Everything I can afford or that is within arms' reach. February 5, 2013 - 6:18am

Well I've put mine up, so everyone feel free to tear it apart.  Like everyone else says, I'm here to learn.

leah_beth's picture
leah_beth from New Jersey - now in Charleston, SC is reading five different books at once. February 5, 2013 - 6:28am

Loving this thread. Loving all the new faces and names. (New to me, anyway.)

Rough draft is written and is terrible. Will work on it more tomorrow. To all the people worried about being torn apart, or thumbs-downed, or anything - this is a GREAT group of people here on LitR. When they offer advice/critiques, it's almost always with the intent to help you take your story to the next level. I've had all good experiences here (from ScareUs, when I got started, through our crazy WAR). 

Good luck to all, and to all a good...day?

avery of the dead's picture
avery of the dead from Kentucky is reading Cipher Sisters February 5, 2013 - 7:05am

FYI - Myself and the other admins can view the votes and if there is a "troll" running around giving random down votes, or if you suspect that, you can let me know and it can be investigated and taken care of.

Thanks!

Flaminia Ferina's picture
Flaminia Ferina from Umbria is reading stuff February 5, 2013 - 12:08pm

Mess_Jess's picture
Mess_Jess from Sydney, Australia, living in Toronto, Canada is reading Perfect by Rachael Joyce February 5, 2013 - 12:25pm

^^^ They put in far more effort than just walking in and picking on people. Everyone should be very reassured about that. Heh.

Courtney's picture
Courtney from the Midwest is reading Monkey: A Journey to the West and a thousand college textbooks February 5, 2013 - 1:14pm

So, wait, we're allowed to post revisions for consumption? I figured it was like the workshop and we got one single go -- that's how Rob made it sound in the article, but he was probably ready to slit his wrists after answering all those questions.

ArlaneEnalra's picture
ArlaneEnalra from Texas is reading Right now I'm editing . . .. February 5, 2013 - 1:32pm

@Courtney Last I checked, it appeared that entries could be edited, including replacing the content of the document you submitted.  Now, if that was the way things were meant or supposed to be ... no clue.  But it appears that you can make changes ...

Frank Chapel's picture
Frank Chapel from California is reading Thomas Ligotti's works February 5, 2013 - 6:40pm

TELEPORT US: ANSWERS (all quotes from ROB)

CAN I PUT IT THRU THE WORKSHOP?

"@Garrett, putting it through the 'shop is fine. Just make sure to submit to this before the deadline. Only caveat: The story can not have been posted elsewhere first, like a lit mag or blog or something. 

CAN I EDIT MY SUBMISSION?

"@Courtney, your submission is locked once you've sent it in. So make sure to revise it nice and good!

FORMATTING?

"@ender, format as you would a short story for submission, i.e., Times New Roman, 12 point font, double-spaced, etc."

DEFINE HUMAN?
@Joe: You and I, born of woman on planet Earth and possessing normal, non-altered DNA, are human. Anything else--anything at all--is fair game.

FURTHER NEEDLESS SPECIFICATION ON HUMAN/NON-HUMAN?

@Tom, as long as they're not naturally-occuring humans like you or I, that's fine. Just make sure it's clear.

DO WE NEED A PHD IN PHYSICS TO WRITE "Scientifically Plausibly?"

@szore and Frank, anti-gravity cars and time travel? Sure! By scientifically-plausible, we mean you can't have your narrator throw his shoe at the sun and make it explode into a unicorn army that feeds on human flesh. We're looking for stuff that feels possible--it's up to you to convince us.

CAN WE USE AN OBJECT?

@Michael, an object isn't a character. Sorry.

DO I RETAIN THE RIGHTS?

@everyone Yes.

ender.che.13's picture
ender.che.13 from Northwestern U.S. living in the southeast peach. is reading Ken Follett February 5, 2013 - 4:01pm

Thanks everybody for the feedback. And for taking the time to check out my story! It really is a cool feeling to know that people, strangers essentialy, take the time to look at something you've put so much work into.

And, even if there is a troll out there trolling it up, the population really is negligible beside the number of awesome people on the site.

Alehydra's picture
Alehydra February 5, 2013 - 5:43pm

So the story has to feature a nonhuman character. Does it have to be the main character?

Grant Williams's picture
Grant Williams from Wichita, KS is reading Friday February 5, 2013 - 5:51pm

I must say that I'm incredibly impressed with the community so far.  Even though i was bummed that my story received a few downvotes, the voters took much more time than I would have expected to explain their reason for voting. Much nicer than a form rejection letter for an agent or complete silence..  Thanks to everyone for reading and I'm loving all the great reads. 

Frank Chapel's picture
Frank Chapel from California is reading Thomas Ligotti's works February 5, 2013 - 6:41pm

@alehydra, See updated answer thang.

Sound's picture
Sound from Azusa, CA is reading Greener Pastures by Michael Wehunt February 5, 2013 - 8:23pm

we mean you can't have your narrator throw his shoe at the sun and make it explode into a unicorn army that feeds on human flesh. 

This made me laugh so hard. 

Jonathan Riley's picture
Jonathan Riley from Memphis, Tennessee is reading Flashover by Gordon Highland February 5, 2013 - 8:38pm

we mean you can't have your narrator throw his shoe at the sun and make it explode into a unicorn army that feeds on human flesh.  

I’m going to try my damnedest to create a world and a character with such great authority over that world, that the audience will in fact believe this is scientifically plausible. 

GaryP's picture
GaryP from Denver is reading a bit of this and that February 6, 2013 - 4:59am

Whoops. Good thing you guys posted something about the rules as I didn't even think to look at them. I've been working on a sci fi story that does not have a non-human and it gots no untopian/dystopian future. 

But man-eating unicorn armies? Check.

JC Piech's picture
JC Piech from England is reading One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest February 6, 2013 - 10:38am

This is really exciting. I wrote the first draft of my first ever sci fi story a couple of months ago, so this has given me a reason to go back and work on it. I wrote the second draft of it today, and I'm actually pretty pleased with it :) Looking forward to posting it soon and getting some feedback!

ArlaneEnalra's picture
ArlaneEnalra from Texas is reading Right now I'm editing . . .. February 6, 2013 - 1:06pm

Just out of curiosity ... is there anyway to kill the editor that wraps comment fields?  This thing is frustrating as heck!

 

Richard's picture
Richard from St. Louis is reading various anthologies February 6, 2013 - 2:24pm

man, hope i have time to write something for this. i don't write enough SF.

as for being "published," if it's behind a paying wall, i say no. my rule of thumb is this: if i can do a quick Google search for the story and author, such as Seeing Red by Richard Thomas and nothing comes up, you're probably safe. if it shows up, then maybe not. so basically i agree with Jess and others.

ender.che.13's picture
ender.che.13 from Northwestern U.S. living in the southeast peach. is reading Ken Follett February 6, 2013 - 2:32pm

It's cool the way that the topmost stories on the primary page cycle through naturally so that everyone gets a notice.

Renfield's picture
Renfield from Hell is reading 20th Century Ghosts February 7, 2013 - 1:11am

Man, really great stories in there so far. Intimidating.

I accidently came up with a story while looking up whatever happened to my favorite 80s child actor. It's an excuse to use the word "chronoceiver" that I've used as a joke-word for a while now. I keep listening to this horrible song over and over. I hope it's worth it.

Flaminia Ferina's picture
Flaminia Ferina from Umbria is reading stuff February 7, 2013 - 5:58am

Got a first draft for this teleporting contest. I love it so much, it'll likely become a novel or novella project. I mean, so much outlining ending up with this whole universe, I just can't squeeze it in 1500-4000 words. BUT I'll revise the draft and try make it a standalone short. Or, rather, submit the work here before the words hatch. For your beautiful company, guisezorzers!

 

Courtney's picture
Courtney from the Midwest is reading Monkey: A Journey to the West and a thousand college textbooks February 7, 2013 - 7:33am

Just saying -- for Parable (we don't accept spec-fic, but I'm giving an example), published means the standard definition of "published" plus your personal blog, Facebook, and other places like that. The best thing to do is check with the staff if you're fuzzy on details. I have found a journal that didn't accept any story that had been online in any way, but they weren't very good anyway. I've never seen a journal that didn't accept, say, workshopped stories -- which is what I consider this to be.

See! Rob said no edits.

Ethan Cooper's picture
Ethan Cooper from Longview, TX is reading The Kill Room, Heart-Shaped Box, Dr. Sleep February 7, 2013 - 12:37pm

I just want to state for the record that the Teleport Us graphic has some sweet lens flare on it.

Rob's picture
Class Director
Rob from New York City is reading at a fast enough pace it would be cumbersome to update this February 7, 2013 - 1:09pm

Hey everyone! So, clarification. Kirk mentioned a little further up in this thread that you do have the capability to edit stories after they have been submitted. 

Yes, this is true. 

But going in and editing your story doesn't affect the rankings you've already got--a new version doesn't give you a clean slate.

Hope that helps. 

Rob's picture
Class Director
Rob from New York City is reading at a fast enough pace it would be cumbersome to update this February 7, 2013 - 1:11pm

Oh, and Courtney, no, I didn't want to slit my wrists. Bang my head against a wall, maybe. 

There's only so many ways you can explain "non-human character" before you need a drink. 

avery of the dead's picture
avery of the dead from Kentucky is reading Cipher Sisters February 7, 2013 - 1:27pm

...just try explaining a double elimination bracket...

 

Mess_Jess's picture
Mess_Jess from Sydney, Australia, living in Toronto, Canada is reading Perfect by Rachael Joyce February 7, 2013 - 1:28pm

@Rob - you're lucky I didn't muddy the non-human waters further by arguing that objects/things could still be sentient, like the talking toaster on Red Dwarf, or Sheriff Carter's house, Sarah, on Eureka.

ArlaneEnalra's picture
ArlaneEnalra from Texas is reading Right now I'm editing . . .. February 7, 2013 - 1:57pm

Or how about one of McCaffrey's shell people?  Or Serenity in Firefly ;)  (Just kidding ...)

Courtney's picture
Courtney from the Midwest is reading Monkey: A Journey to the West and a thousand college textbooks February 7, 2013 - 3:55pm

The only reason I don't feel as bad for Avery and Utah is because, after all is said and done, at least they had a fucking picture and most people read through the threads before asking. Rob, though... not so lucky.

All these stickies are making my head spin, but I want a thread called "Let's worship our fearless leaders" where all we do is compliment you guys on your ceaseless dedication to mollifying us imbeciles.

ender.che.13's picture
ender.che.13 from Northwestern U.S. living in the southeast peach. is reading Ken Follett February 7, 2013 - 4:00pm

Then there should probably be a thread for sycophants, as well.

JC Piech's picture
JC Piech from England is reading One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest February 9, 2013 - 8:14am

I've posted my entry - A Way Out. This is my first Sci Fi story, so I'm really keen to get honest feedback for it!   Please and thank you.

Naomi Mesbur's picture
Naomi Mesbur from Toronto, Ontario, Canada is reading Burn Baby Burn Baby by Kevin T. Craig February 9, 2013 - 7:01pm

Sorry, Rob, guess I f'd up then. My non-human was based on a subjective definition, and not biological. It's posted now (The Procedure) with a verbose explanation in the description. Don't hate me! I'll buy you a drink...

klahol's picture
klahol from Stockholm, Sweden is reading Black Moon February 10, 2013 - 1:24am

This competition is great, but it could benefit from a more nuanced feedback scale. Five points, perhaps? The Emperor Commodus - style voting does not really work. Sometimes a story could be fundamentally good but have critical flaws that could be rectified with a simple revision. 

klahol's picture
klahol from Stockholm, Sweden is reading Black Moon February 10, 2013 - 1:49am

klahol's picture
klahol from Stockholm, Sweden is reading Black Moon February 10, 2013 - 2:39am

For that matter, I would have thought a subtle Holy Grail reference in my title would be a surefire way to get a lot of reads. Now go away or I shall taunt you a second time.

ArlaneEnalra's picture
ArlaneEnalra from Texas is reading Right now I'm editing . . .. February 10, 2013 - 10:12am

@klahol It caught me! "What is the airspeed of an unladen swallow"

Wait, that's the wrong reference ...

He was the on that liked to cast random explosions everywhere.

Rachel Saunders's picture
Rachel Saunders from York, UK is reading Lots of factual stuff for ideas February 10, 2013 - 12:12pm

One thing I wanted to clarify was how many stories are we allowed to enter? I have quite a few running through my head at the moment, aside from the one I've already posted.

 

BTW, if anyone is looking for epic writing music, try anything by Audio Machine, Two Steps from Hell, or Hans Zimmer - guaranteed to make the soundtrack to your life epic and grand.

Rob's picture
Class Director
Rob from New York City is reading at a fast enough pace it would be cumbersome to update this February 10, 2013 - 6:05pm

Rachel, just 1. 

You're from York? I love York!

Courtney's picture
Courtney from the Midwest is reading Monkey: A Journey to the West and a thousand college textbooks February 10, 2013 - 8:37pm

I kind of forgot about my submission.

Rachel Saunders's picture
Rachel Saunders from York, UK is reading Lots of factual stuff for ideas February 10, 2013 - 11:09pm

Cheers Rob, appreciated.

Ya, I live in Old York, and I adore it too :)

SConley's picture
SConley from Texas is reading Coin Locker Babies February 11, 2013 - 10:38am

"Non Human" doesn't necessarily mean it has to be from another planet, right? A giraffe is "non human".

Rob's picture
Class Director
Rob from New York City is reading at a fast enough pace it would be cumbersome to update this February 11, 2013 - 10:47am

Non human means non human. 

fport's picture
fport from Canada is reading The World Until Yesterday - Jared Diamond February 11, 2013 - 11:01am

So tall wily neckfighters are aliens? If you can get into their heads that's alien, Martians had antennae didn't they? Wouldn't that also account for their tallness, they came from low gravity planet to settle on earth, maybe from the fifth planet now commonly known as the asteroid belt. And whales, where did all whales come from or where did the smart ones go away to? Some liquid moon basking in Jupiter's glow?

Rachel Saunders's picture
Rachel Saunders from York, UK is reading Lots of factual stuff for ideas February 11, 2013 - 2:19pm

After posting my story, I was thinking of ideas for this contest, and the idea of distopias kept running through my mind. Here are a few ideas to give y'all some inspiration:

  • Aliens trapped on Earth, aka District 9 - to us Earth is what it is, but to an illegal alien it is hell, or at the very least a dystopia.
  • Time traveller gets stranded in the 16th or 17th century at the height of the religious wars in Europe, where science is persecuted, and plagues are rife. Brings back an AI with him who is dying due to their power running down without any way of recharging.
  • Jungle tribe from deep in the Amazon entre the near future world of tomorrow, the new urban jungle far more scary than the jungle they have left behind. They bring with them a pet from their former home which adapts better than them to their new world.
  • Woman cryogenically frozen at the point of death is reawakening into a society that is utterly alien to her, and she has to adapt to concepts and ideas that she has little understanding of.

Hope they spark a few ideas.

Chacron's picture
Chacron from England, South Coast is reading Fool's Assassin by Robin Hobb February 11, 2013 - 2:54pm

Well this is kinda cool, I'm new to the site and I got up the guts to make me first story post a competition entry, and I'm actually blown away by how much attention people here have paid to my story. I've been writing since I was 18 and I'm now nearly 30 and I've never had such comprehensive feedback. People actually posting my story back to me with added comments? I'd never hoped for so much, nor for it to be as constructive as it is. It's a great confidence builder to be reasonably well received (I think) and be getting feedback from people who aren't afraid to tell me what's wrong. I've never had that online before.

Tell me if you think I've got the wrong attitude here but I don't feel like editing the post of my story is the right thing to do. One, I don't think I can put all the problems right with just simple editing and two, I might as well accept that fuck-ups happen to even the best of us and not worry about whether my entry wins, that wasn't the aim of the game for me anyway - I just wanted to see if I could do it and how I'd handle what criticism I got. Based on what I've had I'd much rather do another draft once I've distanced myself from the story and workshop it later on for those interested. 

And it's nice to read short Sci-fi stories, after years of being a bit of a nerd who reads doorstopper space opera for a past-time. Reading everyone else's entires is giving me a whole new take on what I love doing. 

ArlaneEnalra's picture
ArlaneEnalra from Texas is reading Right now I'm editing . . .. February 11, 2013 - 3:21pm

@Chacron This is only my second story on the site, and I've seen a good deal of the same stuff you are talking about.  They might rip a story to shreds, but they definitely mean well ;)  Good luck to ya!

 

fport's picture
fport from Canada is reading The World Until Yesterday - Jared Diamond February 11, 2013 - 3:22pm

Carry on Chacron, you get what you get, mind the cannibals and other people expect the same in return so it's quid pro quo and the less you bugger up the less helpful people will have to be because not all are flaming writing geniuses in their real jobs as I said to someone else today, a pinch or two of salt and an integument enhancing cream will stand you in good stead.

Welcome.

Mess_Jess's picture
Mess_Jess from Sydney, Australia, living in Toronto, Canada is reading Perfect by Rachael Joyce February 11, 2013 - 6:50pm

You've mentioned "the cannibals" on here twice today, fport. I, for one, am a strict vegetarian, and limit myself to merely eating human souls, abstaining from flesh.