I for one have found the greatest challenge to this assignment is balancing the necessary exposition with plot and character development while making things flow seamlessly as possible (all while staying within the word limit),
On a scale of Kurt Vonnegut to Cormac McCarthy, how exposition-y are you making yours?
Warned Mess_Jess, warned of the cannibals. It's a mission. A calling if you will. I have no quarrel with the soul eaters. None.
I thought one of the basic doctrines of being a vegan was that one not eat anything that has a soul. So, technically, after you've eaten the soul, you should be good to devour whatever's left as a handy source of protein, sans any morale upheaval at all. Excepting, of course, the fact that you did eat there soul.
All my stories are in WPS format so I can't upload it to your site? What can I do?
@William Two options I can think of:
Works should have a means of saving files as a .doc file (Depending on the version you're working with) This is for version 7 but there should be something similar in whatever version you're using: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/884182
Go grab a copy of libreoffice Last I checked, it has the ability to open .wps files (Again I'm not sure on what version) and save to a large number of formats including .doc and .pdf.
I keep accidentally clicking thumbs down but luckily it lets you change your vote. I just expect thumbs up to be on the right for some reason.
@William Bryan Estes, OpenOffice is a free program and a pretty good workaround for saving files in the .doc format.
But ultimately, my best suggestion for you is to bite the bullet and buy Microsoft Office. Yes, Microsoft sucks. Yes, Office sucks. But it's the standard, and workarounds are nice, but being able to save a .doc file that isn't going to go haywire on anyone's machine is nice.
I'm saying this as the editor at a publishing house, who has gotten files in formats other than .doc, or were saved as .doc files using another program, and I spend half my day trying to get the file open, and then the rest of the day reformatting everything so it's usable.
Sorry. Sensitive topic.
I use OpenOffice and it's true, documents can become reformatted when downloaded to Word. My apologies in advace, I'm just too cheap.
If my MC has a third nipple that qualifies as non terrestrial right?
Just joshin' ya bro!
I'm getting behind in my reading, there are ten (as of last count) stories out there I still need to read!
@Heidi Walley-Dinzey, nothing to apologize for. I've just been dealing with a lot of file formatting issues lately. In fact, I had two major issues pop up this morning that could have been avoided with Word. I'm actually planning an intervention with one of my authors, and begging him to retire his copy of WordPerfect.
Wow, at least ten new stories added just today!
I have a question: It says that the top-rated stories will be selected for critiques, but what will constitute as 'top-rated'? Will it only be stories that have 100% thumbs up?
The reason I ask is because up until now I've had 100%, and now it seems someone has given me a thumbs down because of bad formatting, even though no one else has said there's been a problem. So now I'm just all peeved about getting a thumbs down for something that's not related to the story. And I'm just wondering if that's kind of knocked me out of possibly getting selected for a critique?
No more 100% ratings? Weird... Did someone just dislike all the stories at once?
Ah, so it's not just me then :/
That's not nice
No, it isn't just based on 100% scores. I take into account a basic average of your scores and how many reviews your receive as well.
If you get 900 reviews, most of them positive, you will be very likely to get a prize.
Ok, thanks averydoll :)
Oh, thank goodness, 'cause somebody name Piech really jacked my score all up. :P
I'd love some comments on my forgotten story, I haven't had a comment on it since the fifth and completely forgot it was there!
I've been reading some posts and it feels like most of the people who are interested in submitting a story, have the concern that a publisher will consider their story "previously published".
I am an aspiring writer and have goals and dreams like probably everyone else here. However, if you think this is the one chance to show your good idea and find a publisher, you might be in the wrong place. I find this challenge an amazing opportunity to do that, CHALLENGE my skills. They give me a time frame, a genre and 3 guidelines. Once I read that, I start my story from scratch and thinking of just this challenge. If I only have one good idea and think that submitting it to a writers community website might cause some trouble with a publisher, then writing might not be the right path. Even if a publisher reads your story and thinks it's great, he will ask for sure, what else do you got.
This is an awesome opportunity to share your work with other writers and get feedback from the people who know the craft. I was truly upset with myself when I found out that Chuck Palahniuk was going to give his feedback to the top 3 stories of the Scare us Challenge. He might not do it in this one, but whoever is willing to read your material and give you an informed feedback, is worth the time to sit in front of the computer, think, and write. If writing is what you love, do it for the way it makes you feel. Good luck to everyone.
"Oh, thank goodness, 'cause somebody name Piech really jacked my score all up. :P"
Whaaat? I gave you a thumbs up man!
@Courtney: Fear not--coming to the rescue later today.
On the topic of trolls, having followed the overall standing pretty close, seems to me basically everyone got a thumbs down at roughly the same time yesterday-ish. Or maybe I'm seeing ghost-trolls.
Ignore the trolls, if you can. Avery is a smart cookie and will have them pegged for what they are.
I am backlogged with work at the moment, but I plan on starting to read stories in the next week or so. :)
This is the first time I have submitted my writing for anything besides a college course, and this is all pretty exciting. Can't wait to read your stories and receive advice and feedback on mine. Here's to growth and SciFi.
@mess_jess Yeah, a quick look-see at the logs shall cast daylight 'pon the perfidious troll, wherupon the valiant Admin can smite him with his mighty Ban-Hammer. For Ye Winne!
I joned this site to support a friend that uploaded a story and found a lot of great stories! Now, I need to find the time to read them all.
I noticed that a few submissions had multiple dislikes and no likes. I hope that the rapid dislikes was not a retaliation. This is my first litreactor project, and I have luckily had a LOT of support from friends, but I don't care about being the best as much as I care about sharing my story.
I think that my idea needs some fine tuning, but also think that I could turn it into my next publication. With a little more work, I think I know where to submit it to make it publication number 4. Your feedback has helped me to see where to fine tune. Thank you all!
@Tom.Brewer You'd better get started reading! I'm working my way from the bottom of the list to the top, and the top keeps getting further away!
Hello everybody! This contest is my first time at LitReactor, even though I've been lurking in some columns before. I would really appreciate some comments on my submission. It looks like it's generally liked, but few people have said anything about it. Thanks a lot, and I wish everyone luck!
I've been pleasantly surprised both by the quality of stories so far, and by the constructive comments offered by everyone. I'm finding it hard to keep up with the amount of stories coming in, but it's helping me no end to read other people's entries and see the comments they have had. I found this competition / site purely by accident when I followed a random link on Twitter, and what a find it has turned out to be.
This is why I love Dino: he always follows through and rocks.
Thanks Court! Not hard to stay involved when the writing quality has been so good.
A quick thought on reviews. There seems to be an issue with certain Teleport Us participants not understanding the difference between constructive criticism and out-and-out berating. It's one thing not to like a story and/or find flaw with it; it's a whole other thing to level snarky, mean-spirited barbs at people's stories, many of whom are just starting in their writing endeavors. Please be sure to make your criticisms honest but positive. Teleport Us, like its predecesor, Scare Us, is to allow Litreactor non-members an opportunity to workshop a story among a large pool of writers. It's understood that these pieces are first drafts in need of help, so please treat them and their writers as such. If any of you have further questions on how to properly critique, please ask on one of these posts, or check out Litreactor's workshopping guidelines. This is supposed to be a safe place for writers to present their work. Please keep it that way.
I can not agree with Dino more.
And now he has me asking myself if I've been too honest. I hope not. I try to point out things that may bother me as a reader and make suggestions on how I think they can be improved while noting that "my way" is by no means the "right way" I hope it is evident that I am just offering an oppinion on how the story could better apeal to my prefrences when I read, because that is the type of feedback I enjoy getting from other writers/readers on my work.
I haven't read a bad story yet in the competetition but I've only read about 7 or 8 so far. If I come across one that I don't like I will by no means tell the writer that it is a bad story. I will only tell them what I don't like about it, in the most honest, yet sincere way possible. The truth hurts sometimes, but we don't have to beat people with it.
There is "gold" in every story. It's also great to point that out too!
"Whaaat? I gave you a thumbs up man!"
@JC Piech, Oh, no! That's awesome. I'm glad you enjoyed it. But, unfortunately, that also means that I've gotten two "Thumbs-down" now, neither of which came with any feedback. That's a bummer.
Which brings me to an earlier topic I brought up, and mentioned again by @Klahol above: The Trolls. I have to agree with him that there seems to be some erroneous down-thumbing going on. Though, they are certainly in the minority, and there are too many honest individuals on here for you to ever win by falsely battering other people's efforts. Every writer puts their heart into their work; If you have a heart so poisoned that you would treat your fellow writers that way, then that will show in your writing as well. Stories are like faces: every line shows your true character.
On critiques. Writing is a skill, and has to be learned, honed, perfected. Be sure you don't discourage someone who's new to the sport (so to speak) because you neglect to encourage them, even while pointing out there faults. We all deserve the opportunity to improve.
You've also got me wondering if I've been a little "too honest" as well. If I've over done any critiquing, my sincere apologies. My only goal is to provide constructive criticism on any story I've commented on, even the ones I decided not to vote on for various reasons.
Sci-fi is so freaking hard to write. Especially when dealing with government and religion. Every epiphany I have, creates a new plot hole. I may have to start my fifth attempt soon, though four is pretty cool, I just may have bitten off more than I can chew with it.
Anybody want to recommend an overlooked gem? I don't have time to read every story much as I'd like to, and I try to concentrate on those with minimal reads and comments.
For my part I'd recommend Ubi Cor Ibi Domu - easily one of the better stories I've read here, and certainly deserving of more reads and comments.
Also A Hundred More deserves a few more reads too.
Second Ubi Cor Ibi Domu. It is an amazing read. Also, I loved A Black Tie Affair, and The Last Dance.
ArlaneEnalra, I don't think you have been overly critical. In fact, without your critique, I would have forgotten I even posted a short story here, albeit in draft form too! Now, I am constantly re-reading it, and resubmitting updated drafts. Thanks to all of the other reviewers too.
And to the person that said Sci-Fi was not easy to write, you are correct. To create something that pleases everyone is not easy, and a lot of people have their own view on the topic. I am just glad to be part of this!
First, I'm really excited about this, and finally forcing myself to finish something! (a BIG challenge for me)
Question/concern about the Technology Requirement (Must feature a technology that's scientifically plausible):
Does real, currently existing technology count? As an example... What about a normal everyday laboratory, cultivating/killing bacteria in a Petri dish? Of course there's more to it than that ;) but I plan to use only the basic technology required to design, control, and observe experiments in a lab setting... does that qualify?
Thank you!! :)
At HB, I can't see why not. There is nothing more scientifically plausible than technology that already exists.
^^^I assume it to mean a technology that's feasible--that the physics works in theory--even if we don't yet have the computational power, metalurgy technology, or power sources to make it a reality, i.e. interstellar space-flight, wormhole travel, etc.
I'll revert back to Robs quote because it is one of the best quotes ever.
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.
haha! Thanks for the quick responses Riley & Parenti,
-no unicorn army here (although perhaps that's a point against me) and good point Riley, I just wasn't sure if they wanted something more spectacular than lab work :P
Maybe that should be the next challenge. Writing a story involving a shoe, the Sun, Earth being devoured, and a unicorn army. ... Then again, that is just a little absurd.
"a story involving a shoe, the Sun, Earth being devoured, and a unicorn army" - that's almost a Doctor Who episode!
Just thought I'd say that Teleport Us has been a great experience for me so far - it's the first time I've shared my writing with writers before so the feedback has been really useful! It's also nice to hear that I'm not completely rubbish and more people than just my Mom find my writing entertaining :-) I've actually just signed up to the workshops on the back of it so I shall probably be loitering for a couple of weeks to work out what's going on, but then I shall start to get involved!
Unfortunately though I've not had a read or comment on my Teleport Us entry for nearly two weeks, so if anyone is looking for a story to read I'd be very grateful! http://litreactor.com/events/teleport-us/an-incy-wincy-holocaust
Yeah. It seems like a lot of us who got in early are kind of stagnating as far as reads go, but just remember: that's because those who came after are getting the same opportunity, feedback, ratings that we've already gotten. Reading/rating doesn't end until March, so it'll pick back up.
That said: http://litreactor.com/events/teleport-us/the-gorund :)