PDA

View Full Version : WCT - [COMPETITION OVERHAUL - NEED IDEAS] The Writing Competition Thread


Pages : [1] 2 3

HalcyonSpirit
11-01-2008, 07:56 AM
The Writing Competition Thread

News

1/2/2011: The submission and especially the voting participation has faltered lately. Make your 2011 resolution to participate more this year!


Current Stage: FREEFORM SUBMISSION
Contest Dates:
Submission: 0:00 UTC 1 January, 2012 - 23:59 UTC 31 January, 2012
Voting: 0:00 UTC 1 February, 2012 - 23:59 UTC 14 February, 2012
Results Posting: 0:00 UTC 15 February, 2012 - 23:59 UTC 16 February, 2012

General Info:
The Writing Competition Thread holds competitions starting at the beginning of every other month, with the submission, voting and judging stages usually lasting six weeks followed by a short break. There are three categories that our competitions fall under: short story, poetry, and freeform. Each competition focuses on one of these categories. We aim to be a non-threatening competition, and to help our entrants improve their creative writing skills. If you are interested, please enter regardless of your skill level. We try to give feedback and helpful tips for entered works once each contest is over.

Submission Rules:
Late submissions will not be counted.
Entries should reflect the category of the competition. If an entry is deemed to not fit into the correct category, it will be ignored.
Only entries written within the time frame of the submission stage will be considered. After all, the idea behind the competition is partially to promote creativity within a particular time frame, and inherent in the idea of creativity is the act of creation.
Only one entry per person is allowed.
Finish your work before you post your submission, or if you make a revision, identify it clearly and do so before the submission deadline. Edits of submissions after the voting phase begins will be ignored.
Competitions, to be viable, must have at least three (3) entries. Additionally, if a minimum of four (4) entries are not submitted before the end of the official submission stage, the submission deadline will automatically be extended one (1) week.
If the current round of the competition does not meet the minimum entry requirement, the round ends without a vote. Entrants, if they so choose, will be allowed to be resubmit their piece, unedited, in the next competition it is eligible for.
Remember to include a title, or at least something for people to call your work during the voting phase.
Please post your piece directly into this thread whenever possible! Otherwise it may get overlooked. If your piece is too long to fit conveniently into a forum post, please find some alternate form of hosting such as Google Docs or FictionPress.com and link us to it instead.
Uploading your finished works to hosts such as Google Docs or FictionPress.com and sharing the links with us is highly recommended! While not necessary for entering, it will help us archive the entries from each competition.

Category - Short Story:
No fanfiction. Fanfiction will belong in the Freeform category. Why? Because creating and developing your own characters in a limited amount of space is a significant challenge. Working with existing characters in existing universes is like remixed music; it's one thing to remix a song, but something completely different to make it from scratch.
Fiction and nonfiction are both welcome.
Please limit your submissions in this category to 3000 words.
Feel free to label your work according to its genre, style, etc. This will help people understand and better judge your piece.

Category - Poetry:
No fanpoetry. That is, nothing that qualifies as fanfiction, but in verse form. See above for the reasoning behind this. Also note that allusion is one thing; basing the majority of your work on another person's creative product is another.
Poetry can be almost anything. You need not adhere to a particular form unless you wish to. Anything from sonnets to haikus to free-verse belongs here.
Please limit your submissions in this category to 1000 words.
Feel free to label your work according to its form, e.g., ballad, villanelle, palindrome, limerick, free-verse, acrostic, etc.

Category - Freeform:
If it has words, it belongs here. Examples could be Maddox-style rants, journalistic articles, how-to documents, or really whatever creative idea you can come up with.
Please limit your submissions in this category to 3000 words.
Feel free to label your work if you think it will help.

Voting Rules:
Early or late votes will not be accepted.
Anyone may vote, even if he or she does not have a current submission. If foul play is suspected (i.e., an entrant finding a bunch of friends or alt accounts to artificially support their entry) an investigation will occur.
Scoring: If the voter has submitted an entry this round or in the past, he or she will be allotted 6 points to distribute. If the voter has NOT submitted this round or in the past, he or she will be allotted 3 points.
When voting, you will award your allotted points to any two or more entries as you choose. Note: this means you may not award all of your points to one and only one entry.
A voter may allot up to one point to his or her own entry if he or she so chooses.
Please submit all votes via PM to me (HalcyonSpirit).

Judging Rules:
After the deadline for voting has passed, I (HalcyonSpirit) will tally the votes for each submission and post the results no later than the end of the judging stage.
The submission with the most points will be declared the winner, and the submission with the second most points will be declared the runner-up.

HalcyonSpirit
11-01-2008, 08:04 AM
Current Submissions
for the September 2011 Short Story Competition:

Bobert's Boredom (http://ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=811429&postcount=514) by Mirby
NOBODY (http://ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=811484&postcount=515) by Jax Mandrake
Savanna Dream (http://ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=812247&postcount=516) by Simplicity

Results
for the September 2011 Short Story Competition:

1st Place: Savanna Dream by Simplicity
Runner-Up: NOBODY by Jax Mandrake

The vote tally:

Savanna Dream (http://ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=812247&postcount=516) by Simplicity - 10
NOBODY (http://ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=811484&postcount=515) by Jax Mandrake - 6
Bobert's Boredom (http://ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=811429&postcount=514) by Mirby - 2

Imagist
11-01-2008, 07:32 PM
Haha. Write your little hearts out, indeed. And if you guys are still around in two years, I'll be sure to come back by.

So, I'm all critiqued out on your poem, Random Hajile. Yeah, it took me three months, whatever. Now I'm going to finish my thoughts on Washington Maverick's story, and I may even have time to put together one more little surprise for you guys... but for that, you'll just have to wait and see.

Critique of "Walk" by Random Hajile (http://docs.google.com/View?docid=dhkhnhs5_2fkmhvnn9) (linked because it's too large for one post)

Jam Stunna
11-16-2008, 07:08 PM
Hey guys! I apologize for not being as active back here as I should be, but I hope to change that. Poetry is by no means my strong suit, but when short stories come up again, I'd like to help critique pieces.

JH Sounds
11-16-2008, 08:10 PM
Hey guys! I apologize for not being as active back here as I should be, but I hope to change that. Poetry is by no means my strong suit, but when short stories come up again, I'd like to help critique pieces.

No one's stopping you from critiquing the short stories that are already here... :-o

Jam Stunna
11-16-2008, 08:52 PM
No one's stopping you from critiquing the short stories that are already here... :-o

Will do, sir.

Okay. I just read your story, and I'm not really sure what to say. It was well-written, and nothing really stood out, but I suppose that's the problem. There was no sense of mystery or discovery to this story; we knew from the beginning that they were hunting a UFO, and then they found it. The moment that your main character encountered the UFO was almost anti-climactic, and I was left feeling, "That's it?"

You only used 1/3 of the word limit, and it feels like 1/3 of a story honestly. There's so much room left to take this in some direction, any direction. What do the people do about this conspiracy? What did the aliens do with this information? How did your main character react a few days later? This is just the beginning of what could be a good story, and I hope you choose to expand on it.

HalcyonSpirit
11-24-2008, 04:40 AM
Wow, time's really crept up on me this month. I guess that's what happens when you've got many things to worry about at once...

Alright people! We've got one week left for submitting your piece! Get a move on, go go go! :-D

Random Hajile
11-24-2008, 08:54 PM
The Name


What would you say to me
If I told you that all things
have a name?

A name, created forever ago-
A name singular, secret and sacred,
A name that grants form?

What if I told you
That if you cried out
The name of the moon,

You could bathe at midday
under its dappled falling shine;
taking in its light?

That if you called to the skies,
You could surround yourself
With a span of azure infinity,

Paint sun-songs with hidden words,
Or build a house of clouds while
floating in blue nothingness?

To think; You could merely utter
The name of oceans - That
vast implication; You could

Summon distant, breaking shores
for your own inspection and approval-
to satisfy the merest curiosity?

Would you say it was fantasy?
Something august to ponder;
And then regretfully forget?

That to guide a symphony of creation
with mere words and intention
Is a blasphemy?

Or maybe you would think it over -
And softly, sadly say,
"I could never..."

But what if... what if
I gently spoke to you the name of love,
Tender yet bittersweet?

Would you scoff at my audacity,
To arrogantly manipulate its meaning
by not letting it go free?

Or would you see that sadly, I'll
never be able to find the name
for what you mean to me?

HalcyonSpirit
11-29-2008, 02:57 PM
Come on now, people. There has been one submission this round so far. That's not good. I don't want to have to extend the deadline for my first competition at the helm!

You've got about a day and a half left to submit. Let's see some writing!

ubernym
11-29-2008, 03:47 PM
Sorry guys, I can't write poetry.

SoulinEther
11-29-2008, 09:35 PM
Come on now, people. There has been one submission this round so far. That's not good. I don't want to have to extend the deadline for my first competition at the helm!

You've got about a day and a half left to submit. Let's see some writing!

As much as I feel like an ass for failing to provide proper feedback, I will be the horrible artist that I am and submit something regardless. I have been working on something and it's still needing work. So... I'll be working on it i guess in the next day.

M W
11-30-2008, 05:03 AM
I'm just going to jump right in, if that's all right.

Media

When the sound is heard
I think nothing
Yet, the power flows
demanding, deciding
position, time
will

Ideas in a stream
currents warping through
dust and sediment
swarming
Slave to the waters
with or against

When the sound is heard
they are who they are
When the sound is heard
we are who we are
But, when the sound is heard
I am not myself


http://other.revasser.net/special/media.html

SoulinEther
11-30-2008, 07:17 AM
Soon
by Yousef Reda

Why is life so bittersweet?
A sustainment most duplicitous,
an apple so ripe on the outside,
so innocuous...
But what say the worms within
into which our mouths collide
upon first innocent bite?

Was it just yesterday?
So blindly did I caress with my lips,
adore with my tongue,
penetrate with my teeth...
So eagerly did I step forward
and undertake an undertaking
most overtaking.

But on such a dreary winding path
have I been for so long traveling.
And in my mind a little voice begs:
"Where will this end?"

"Maybe the next one won't be as bad.
Maybe it'll be deliciously crunchy."
My voice resonates with... nothing.
I am alone: a sole, unsoulless soul.

Hello Bitter. Where is Sweet?

Sooner or later I must surely find him.
Just a few steps further, just a few minutes more...

Soon minutes turn into hours,
and hours into days, and days into decades.
My soul shall so soon rot,
turn stale and sour, as has my flesh
on this straining, lonesome night.

Soon dawn shall strike down upon the earth,
the sun spattering rays of hope
through the apple orchards, chaste and pristine,
through the weeping willows, tired and withered,
to vindicate my lying body
with my honest soul,
and I shall have found my way.

Soon.

TheHands
11-30-2008, 09:15 PM
Wrote this in about five minutes, can't hurt to have it in.
Electronic Transaction

Click click.
My mouse closes the inbox.
Click click.
The apartment door unlocks.
Click click.
The fork brushes against her teeth.
Click click.
My revolver's against her head.
Click click.
The gears on my wrist tell me to go.
Click click.
He’s already wired the money to my account.

SoulinEther
12-01-2008, 12:42 AM
I officially dislike my poem, after the 24 hour period from creating it has passed.

Where's the rhythm :/

HalcyonSpirit
12-01-2008, 02:31 PM
The submission stage is now officially over!

We've got four entries this time:

The Name by Random Hajile (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=478773&postcount=8)
Media by M W (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=480450&postcount=12)
Soon by SoulinEther (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=480496&postcount=13)
Electronic Transaction by TheHands (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=480652&postcount=14)

Time to get voting! Remember, anyone and everyone can vote, so don't be shy!

---

I have one other matter to bring up since we almost had this problem with the current competition. There is nothing in the rules that cover situations in which there aren't enough entries for the round to vote on. I know that we've just been dealing with it as it occurs, but I feel like a basic framework should be outlined in the competition rules. To that end, I have two proposals for additions to the rules:


I want to add to the rules something that states the competition must have a minimum number of entries for the competition to be viable that round. I was thinking 3 or 4 (input please!). To go with that, perhaps it may be wise to say that if the number of entries is below the minimum by the end of the official submission stage, the submission deadline would be automatically extended by a week.
If the current round of the competition does not meet the minimum requirements, the round ends without a vote. Since we're running a friendly competition, I want to make it so the people that did submit aren't essentially backhanded by the lack of submissions. To that end, I was thinking we could allow those entries, unedited, to be submitted in the next competition they are eligible for.


It's just something I've been pondering; naturally, with me being an engineering major, I'm going to be thinking about ways of standardizing the competition rules while not sacrificing the feel of the competition itself. What do you guys think?

TheHands
12-02-2008, 02:59 AM
4 is a good number, it allows enough competition to make a fair contest. I like the idea of the later contest automatic submission, but it seems like they'd be losing out on the chance to make something new for that event. The other big issue with the second proposed rule is if folks get too competitive, they may try to specifically write something as a counter to the previous piece. I don't think that would be too much of a problem, but it does seem like a possible issue.

SoulinEther
12-02-2008, 03:10 AM
Personally I'm finding that I don't write well for competitions. lol. But as far as rules go, i think my only point of contention is whether or not you can resubmit a work for a later competition...

Maybe you shouldn't be able to submit an old work again... But what if it was a really good piece? Hm.. I'm not sure really.

HalcyonSpirit
12-02-2008, 03:39 AM
Just so it's clear, I'm not saying that they MUST submit that piece for a later competition. They can either use that work or make something new. It's completely up to them.

That thing about it possibly being a really good piece is one of the reasons why I'm like "I'd be upset if I submitted a really good piece for a competition that doesn't happen and I can't submit it ever again!" Seems a bit unfair to disqualify a person's work based on the lack of work from other people.

I don't think we'd have to worry about people writing something to "counter" the previous piece; is that even possible? The contest is about which piece the voters think is "best," which is entirely subjective, so to say that something can be written to specifically counter another work just doesn't seem possible...

TheHands
12-02-2008, 03:42 AM
I don't think we'd have to worry about people writing something to "counter" the previous piece; is that even possible? The contest is about which piece the voters think is "best," which is entirely subjective, so to say that something can be written to specifically counter another work just doesn't seem possible...

That's alright, most of what runs through my head doesn't make much sense.

Doulifée
12-03-2008, 02:55 PM
Title fixed, also i think i'm going to start the famous WC Archive i promised to Imagery aeon ago.

SoulinEther
12-07-2008, 03:20 AM
Alright, I'm ready to vote.

HalcyonSpirit
12-13-2008, 04:08 PM
We only have a few days left for voting, and I've only gotten votes from two people! I don't want to judge this thing based just on three votes!

SoulinEther
12-13-2008, 11:23 PM
don't be dumbocratic. vote.

TheHands
12-14-2008, 02:06 AM
Vote. Or the terrorists win.

M W
12-14-2008, 04:43 AM
I voted.

... I think.

HalcyonSpirit
12-14-2008, 05:28 AM
Check your PMs. For reference, I sent you a PM regarding your vote about a week ago.

Doulifée
12-15-2008, 12:30 AM
http://www.doulifee.com/WritingCompetition

everything i have is there. I need to write a proper code to display a user-friendly page now.

SoulinEther
12-15-2008, 05:54 AM
http://www.doulifee.com/WritingCompetition

everything i have is there. I need to write a proper code to display a user-friendly page now.

The last competition I participated in is not available... it had Washington Maverick, Random Hajile, Imagery, me, just64helpin, GA Jedi Knight... other... people.... (memory failure :/)

HalcyonSpirit
12-15-2008, 09:34 PM
Nice, Doulifée. I'll go through it sometime soon and see if there's anything missing.


Only a few more hours until the official voting period ends, people! (Remember, we're running on UTC time now.) I want to see some more votes!

SoulinEther
12-16-2008, 03:51 AM
the suspense kills me.

HalcyonSpirit
12-16-2008, 09:31 PM
Well, I've been busy for the past 12 hours, so I decided to just wait and see whether we would be getting more than just votes from participants and myself. Alas, this was not the case. In any event...

THE RESULTS ARE IN!

1st Place: Media by M W
Runner-Up: Soon by SoulinEther

Here's the vote spread:

Media by M W: 8
Soon by SoulinEther: 7
The Name by Random Hajile: 6
Electronic Transaction by TheHands: 6

Congratulations to everyone, and especially to M W and SoulinEther! There weren't very many entries for this round, but I think the quality was just as good as ever.


Incidentally, if there is anyone else who wants to chime in about my proposed changes to the rules, now would be the time. I want to have an answer concerning it before the next competition starts.

M W
12-17-2008, 01:07 AM
... Wow!

Th-thank you for those who voted.

SoulinEther
12-17-2008, 01:27 AM
I wish more people voted... nevertheless, congrats M W (i liked how you expressed how the media corrupts us in so few words). Thanks to those who voted.

Random Hajile
12-17-2008, 02:56 PM
...Really? :(

Doulifée
12-18-2008, 03:23 PM
badge will come soon.

The page code work, except the freeform. Should i add them under freeform or under their particular category? (check the new page to see how that work)

I'll handle picture and color later (right now it's the default ocremoved CSS)

http://img128.imageshack.us/img128/9500/mwgj1.png
http://img393.imageshack.us/img393/2264/sieen4.png

SoulinEther
12-18-2008, 10:56 PM
Sweet, the badge has come.

(i'm all excited)

SoulinEther
12-27-2008, 08:05 AM
Double-posting, but I got a question: what do I do if I have an idea for something I'd like to write (now) for the next round, but we're in between rounds? Can I write it now and still use it in the next round?

HalcyonSpirit
12-27-2008, 03:30 PM
You can have the idea now. You can develop the idea now. Develop the idea all you want right now! You can write down ideas and such, and you can keep thinking about it all you want; the rules don't govern those. What you can't do is start to actually write the piece until the competition starts.

SoulinEther
12-27-2008, 08:08 PM
You can have the idea now. You can develop the idea now. Develop the idea all you want right now! You can write down ideas and such, and you can keep thinking about it all you want; the rules don't govern those. What you can't do is start to actually write the piece until the competition starts.

Alright. Excellent. Now... to write down the idea without writing it actually down? There's my challenge lol.

HalcyonSpirit
01-01-2009, 06:08 AM
Happy New Year 2009! The January Freeform competition has begun. I'm hoping to see quite a few submissions this time around. I'll hopefully be participating in this one as well! Good luck everyone, and happy writing!

SoulinEther
01-01-2009, 10:32 PM
Happy New Year 2009! The January Freeform competition has begun. I'm hoping to see quite a few submissions this time around. I'll hopefully be participating in this one as well! Good luck everyone, and happy writing!
OMG YES

and happy new year everyone.

SoulinEther
01-08-2009, 12:59 AM
Bumping to say I am now advertising for this competition in my signature.

I'll probably add a simple link at some point too. for those who can't stand to watch an animated gif.

HalcyonSpirit
01-08-2009, 02:19 AM
That's... sorta disturbing...

I like it! But did you need to use the font that you did? Was that intentional? It might just be me, but the larger the type gets, the harder it is for me to read it.

In other news, I was actually contemplating putting together some sigs for the competition, so this is a good start.

SoulinEther
01-08-2009, 05:21 AM
That's... sorta disturbing...

I like it! But did you need to use the font that you did? Was that intentional? It might just be me, but the larger the type gets, the harder it is for me to read it.

In other news, I was actually contemplating putting together some sigs for the competition, so this is a good start.

Yeah, I used it intentionally so there would only be black and white, which keeps the file size low (~8KB lol) Plus... I don't know, it just ... meh. Strikes me as somewhat vintage.

It can be changed, of course.

And I have started on my submission for this round. It will be another poem, except it'll have multiple parts... sorta.

Rophell
01-10-2009, 02:47 AM
The Solo

Cold steel. Thats what got Murphy, in the end. Multiple stab wounds to the face, ribs, stomach, brought about in a cold desert in cold blood by a bunch of disillusioned little men. It could have been a bullet that took him out...but he was just too damn good of a man to die a humane death.

Cold steel... is what I now hold at my lips. A circular, metal mouthpiece, designed to channel vibrations...

...vibrations were how it started. I wish I could blame them instead of myself. Myself... god, if I had posessed the slightest bit of foresight, this would never have happened. The tanks at the fore of the convoy would never have been bombed, later to be beset upon by the enemy...

I breathe...

...I don't deserve it. Murphy, now theres a man who deserves it. Murphy didn't hesitate when thos damned rpg's came tearing after us. Murphy didn't play dead when every last of his comrades were ripped apart by the onslaught of lead that followed. He fought til his gun clicked dry then fought some more, till the AK swung like a baseball bat caught him in the jaw, while I watched through half closed eyes, waiting for my chance to scramble like a dirty peice of shit to the nearest vehicle...

My throat is on fire. How can they expect me to do this? How can those fuckers expect me to play taps at the funeral that should have been my own?!? I was the ranking officer, his life was my responsibility, and I was a coward!!!

The time comes for me to play, the torrent of tears running down my face driving on unchecked, and I know that I cannot produce even a single tone. No matter, because the brass instrument is already flying past the flagpole, my breath being used instead to scream louder than I had ever before...

The time comes for me to play, the torrent of tears running down my face driving on unchecked, and I know just how to apologise to Murphy, as he had apologised to me and our team on the video sent to CNN.

I play, and the tone pierces even my own heart. An eternity and a half later, I finish.

Murphy...I'm sorry.So I saw a link to this in someones sig and decided to give it a try... hopefully more people will enter?

JH Sounds
01-10-2009, 03:46 AM
Well, I'm working on a sequel to a previous entry I submitted (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showthread.php?p=390507&3post=73). It should still work as a standalone piece, though.

Rophell
01-10-2009, 04:05 AM
64 helpings of what?

SoulinEther
01-10-2009, 09:19 AM
Well, I'm working on a sequel to a previous entry I submitted (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showthread.php?p=390507&3post=73). It should still work as a standalone piece, though.

Halcyon, you took a class taught by Nikki Giovanni? Nice!

Hm, a sequel. I haven't been around here all that long, but is that a first? Sounds exciting still.

And my poem hasn't come along much beyond my mind and what's on my blackberry lol.

HalcyonSpirit
01-10-2009, 09:24 PM
Halcyon, you took a class taught by Nikki Giovanni? Nice!

:tomatoface: Actually, I was planning on taking that class. Unfortunately, she being Nikki Giovanni, the class filled up really quickly. Not even my Senior status ensured a seat for me. I didn't get in. Oh well...

Rophell
01-11-2009, 02:09 AM
Well, I'm working on a sequel to a previous entry I submitted (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showthread.php?p=390507&3post=73). It should still work as a standalone piece, though.
I would like it if you made a sequel.

AJiLe
01-13-2009, 06:02 PM
hey guise

this looks awesome (first i'm seeing of it). when's the submission deadline for this month's contest?

HalcyonSpirit
01-13-2009, 06:24 PM
Contest Dates:
Submission: 12:00am UTC 1 January, 2009 - 11:59pm UTC 31 January, 2009
Voting: 12:00am UTC 1 February, 2009 - 11:59pm UTC 15 February, 2009
Judging: 12:00am UTC 16 February, 2009 - 11:59pm UTC 18 February, 2009

Basically, submissions are always open for at least the entirety of the first month of each round.

Good to see another new face around here.

SoulinEther
01-13-2009, 09:05 PM
Basically, submissions are always open for at least the entirety of the first month of each round.

Good to see another new face around here.

I knew the lewd signature would do this competition justice.

AJiLe
01-14-2009, 02:51 PM
yes! it was the sig that lured me! although this is gonna be tough for me--about 99% of my writing thus far has been sexual...

SoulinEther
01-15-2009, 11:36 PM
yes! it was the sig that lured me! although this is gonna be tough for me--about 99% of my writing thus far has been sexual...

Haha, that's fine; there are no real rules about whether or not your writing can be sexual. I just wrote it in the manner of a Viagra commercial, with some "expert" (someone horny, I suppose) sharing information with the audience.

"Like to write? It doesn't have to be a sexual thing, you know.."

meh lol.

AJiLe
01-16-2009, 03:43 AM
well here's my entry then. it's a short story. science fiction. not much sex (no sex). here's the link:

http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=dccv7tpq_0hfbqqgvm

thanks to anyone who takes the time to check it out!

Stove_Top
01-17-2009, 06:45 AM
Thought I would just drop off my entry in the Short Story Category, just a quick heart wrenching tale.

http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=dgx86zjq_06z55n4cz

Thanks for anyone that has a look, I would love any criticism.

Jam Stunna
01-19-2009, 07:51 AM
Here's my entry for freeform. I wrote it for Mephisto's project, but I'm not doing anything else with it.

Twins
By Jamil Ragland

That night, the moon was a silver cradle in the sky, turned upwards towards the heavens. Its light poured out like milk, white and pure. There were no stars, I remember that well. The only time I’d ever seen the sky so black. It drank up the moon, greedily, leaving the streets below shrouded like a funeral procession. The only light for us came from the staccato bursts of Walter’s phone, a blinking green that covered the hallway we were crouched in. I could see my sister’s face for only a moment, every few seconds. I see it even more clearly now than I did then; her long nose hanging over thin lips; fear reflected in her blueberry eyes. The contacts helped, but Walter could only do so much to make us look different. I’d almost cried when I looked down and at my sandy brown hair after he cut it. Our mother had babied me especially. She used to hold me against her large breasts and run her fingers through my hair, always circling my left ear. Alice would just stand there, watching. She was the stronger one, and I was ashamed of that. It only drove me deeper into our mother’s bosom.

She’d been dead for almost three years at that point. I can still see her body dangling from the Great Spire, her face purple and bloated from the beating she’d received. I prayed that she’d been dead before they strung her up, so that she wouldn’t see our father crowing before the television cameras below her, shaking hands with the Force’s commissioner for reporting the last unauthorized birth. Alice wanted to kill him. I made her swear on our mother’s body that she wouldn’t. Nothing would bring out the sleek, black sedans of the Force faster than silencing their golden canary. I still gave people too much credit then. It hadn’t occurred to me that a man would impregnate a woman just to report it years later. It took me even longer to understand why he hadn’t reported us immediately. Killing babies didn’t make for good television.

Walter took us in after that. He was a short, balding man with a charcoal beard that hang down to his protruding belly. Almost the exact opposite image of our father. He called his brother a real bastard. He said he was surprised that he didn’t go for triplets, just to impress the Force even more when he brought all of us in. I wish I’d been there to see the look on the commissioner’s ruddy face when he appeared with nothing. We never had the pleasure of seeing our father hang for public display like mother. By then, we were already being shuffled from safe house to safe house. But even among the indigent, the outcasts and the criminals who were trying to stay one step ahead of the Force, we stood out. Being the only twins born in over a century has that effect.

In the momentary green light, I could see all that through Alice’s contacts. I wondered what she saw when she looked at me. Her brother, of course, but beyond that? Did I make her feel safe? Did she believe me when I told her that I would never let anything happen to her? I wasn’t sure I did. If not for Walter, our public executions would have been years ago. He used his knowledge of the system to fight the Force, while our father used it to ingratiate himself to them. It’s funny how different siblings can be. Like me and Alice.

A flood light exploded through the cracked drywall of the safe house, tracing through the hall like slices of diamond. Walter nodded for us to move forward, slowly. The Force had been tipped off to us, probably by someone hoping to cop out of whatever trouble they’d gotten themselves into. Alice’s pigtails bounced awkwardly on her head as she walked forward, looking for a door to escape through. Nothing. The only exit was back in the direction of the floodlight. The Force would enter the building soon, and then the only choice would be whether to die there in a storm of automatic gunfire, or to wait and be made into trophies before our deaths. I didn’t want Alice to have to make that choice, so I made it for her.

I couldn’t believe that her tears were blue too. They must not have been very good contacts. Both she and Walter gave me no resistance. I guess when you live like how we did for so many years, you get used to being in crappy positions. They would just wait it out. He knew just how lazy the Force really was. They wouldn’t go through the trouble of securing the building if I surrendered. They were only hunting us so relentlessly because of the huge bounty on us. He and Alice would be safe; the Force would get at least one trophy. That’s about as close to a win-win as you find in this world.

When I stepped outside, I saw what looked like dozens of the Force, the blinding floodlight reflecting off their black visors. Even the commissioner was there. He wasn’t nearly as tall in person as he appeared on television. He muttered something into my ear, but all I remember is his voice being raspy and dry, like dead leaves blown across a fallow field. I was surprised at how well they treated me. They didn’t even handcuff me. And sure enough, they didn’t enter the building at all. Half of them were already gone before they placed me in the back of the commissioner’s limousine. I’ve had enough to eat since that night, a soft bed, a warm room. The producer of the Force’s nightly program told me that this was all just for sweeps week; a kinder, gentler Force. No torture or beatings; some criminals would be forgiven; all executions would be efficient and painless. At least I chose the right week to surrender.

They decided not to spare me. But they did agree that as long as I wrote this confession, they would drop all of the charges against Walter and Alice. I have no idea if they’ll keep their word or not. Probably not. By the time they’ve had their fun with me though, she’ll be so far gone that they’ll never find her. Every Force officer in the city will be at my execution, so she’ll have her run of the city. I guess it’s nice to be popular. She’s so beautiful and smart, just like mother was. And I’m a coward, just like father. I hope my death helps her to live. I really do.

I wanted this to be more than just a confession though. This is my history, our history. When you read this confession, I want you to know who you're killing. My last request is that you read this out loud at my execution. I know you won't, but it can't hurt to ask at this point.

My name is Brian, and I am guilty of the crime of being born. I will be sentenced to death in one week. It really sucks too; my hair is starting to grow back.

SoulinEther
01-19-2009, 07:21 PM
Mm, perhaps I could clarify (HalcyonSpirit may need to correct me though :D)

This is a bi-monthly contest; each round has its own theme/specific kind of writings or whatever. You can't submit something under a specific category unless you're submitting it during the round of that category

...however! Right now is the Freeform submission round, meaning basically anything you write in the one month writing phase of the competition is acceptable. So a short story, a poem, an explanation of vapor lock - anything is fine. Really, this is probably the best time to join, because you can write whatever you feel comfortable with writing.

Just wanted to clear that up. Your submissions are looking good - real motivation for me, lol.

Working more on my poem. I think this will be my first submission I'm really proud of writing/I had a very serious interest behind making. woo.





edit: uh, is Rophell banned for real?

Jam Stunna
01-20-2009, 04:17 AM
Yeah, I know the rules, I've participated before. Thanks for the heads-up though.

SoulinEther
01-20-2009, 06:19 AM
Yeah, I know the rules, I've participated before. Thanks for the heads-up though.

Alright alright fair enough, you're right, I do remember reading some of your other stuff now that you mention it. But some others I think are new maybe kinda who knows oh God why am I still talking this is embarrassing like when you stick out your hand for a handshake among a big group of people and the person whose hand you wanted to shake decides not to shake your hand and all you're left with is your outstretched hand and people looking at you in awkwardness and you have a spontaneous moment of wondering "I hope they didn't see what a huge gaff I just made," and everybody really has and they're sorta snickering inside and quietly amongst one another and you have no choice but to resign yourself to a failure and move on and retract your outstretched hand...

Wellll, it's not that bad... not on the internets at least.

HalcyonSpirit
01-20-2009, 06:32 AM
I interpreted it as a response to Stove_Top, actually, since he maybe was thinking that all categories were running at once. That is who you were responding to, right SoulinEther? :wink:


As for Rophell... I'll ask one of the moderators about it in the morning. If he's gone for a time past the end of the competition, well... we'll deal with it as it happens.

SoulinEther
01-21-2009, 01:24 AM
I interpreted it as a response to Stove_Top, actually, since he maybe was thinking that all categories were running at once. That is who you were responding to, right SoulinEther? :wink: Yes, it was... I was just too lazy to quote.

Poem is coming along. I actually wrote something... I'll try to finish it this week before university kicks in again (and kicks my ass, to boot) (pun(s) intended).

M W
01-22-2009, 12:16 AM
I got something interesting going, but it probably won't be finished until last moment.

Thankfully, I have a few days off coming to work with it.

TheHands
01-22-2009, 04:05 AM
Have WiP. Will finish by deadline.

Also, since I'm too lazy to look back to see if I remembered to, late grats to November's winners.

Random Hajile
01-23-2009, 05:44 AM
Heaven in a Box -

Once, On a trip during a series of gloomy days
I sat in my seat; thus engaged - To ponder idle
thoughts of simple possibility.

For on the edge of these breaking clouds
lining brightly their misty shroud - were hints
bespeaking some infinite tranquility.

For who, here, could possibly come to know,
Whats behind those simple clouds, and glows
with such beauty, and potential-
...Such lambent fury!

SoulinEther
01-23-2009, 07:16 AM
Heaven in a Box -

Once, On a trip during a series of gloomy days
I sat in my seat; thus engaged - To ponder idle
thoughts of simple possibility.

For on the edge of these breaking clouds
lining brightly their misty shroud - were hints
bespeaking some infinite tranquility.

For who, here, could possibly come to know,
Whats behind those simple clouds, and glows
with such beauty, and potential-
...Such lambent fury!
is skillfully quoting without reading...lol, you've got great poems, but i don't want to read yours before i go about finishing mine, to keep my eyes and brain virgin and chaste etc.

this round is exciting.

HalcyonSpirit
01-23-2009, 02:17 PM
this round is exciting.

Indeed. Now I have to finish my entry...

M W
01-29-2009, 03:47 AM
I'm almost finished. I justed left off at 3846 and I think I'll close in around 5000 when finished, probably by tomorrow night, edited on Saturday, posted just before midnight deadline.

What a rush.

HalcyonSpirit
01-29-2009, 05:30 PM
I'm almost finished. I justed left off at 3846 and I think I'll close in around 5000 when finished, probably by tomorrow night, edited on Saturday, posted just before midnight deadline.

What a rush.

3846? As in, 3846 words?

Hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the current rules state that the maximum word count for an entry in Freeform is 3000 words flat.

Incidentally, there's only three days left for submission! I know I should've made an announcement at least a week in advance of the deadline, but I've been sorting through some personal issues and forgot. Speaking of which, said problems have been interfering with my ability to write, so I may not have anything ready for this round, unfortunately. (And if I do submit something, don't expect quality writing...)

JH Sounds
01-29-2009, 07:33 PM
3846? As in, 3846 words?

Hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the current rules state that the maximum word count for an entry in Freeform is 3000 words flat.

Maybe it's 3846 characters. :razz:

EDIT: Oh, and I just finished my entry. I'll use the next two days to smooth out the rough edges.

M W
01-31-2009, 05:29 AM
Let's try this. I'll just call it "Girl Stuff".

“Éwa.”

I was at the Kindergartener’s pen on the other side of the school. Éwa was volunteering to be with those kids again so their teacher wouldn’t have to.

“Éwa!”



“You, kid. Go get Éwa for me.”

“No!”

“Please?”

“You’re gay! Go away!”

“I’ll give you a candy. Go get Éwa.”

“Okay.”

All Kindergartener’s are stupid. I was a stupid Kindergartener too.

He came back tugging Éwa along and blurted “Where’s the candy?”, and he left after I gave him a gumdrops pack through the chain link fence the pen was made out of. He yelled “You’re still gay!” at me halfway gone.

“This whole ‘gay’ business is pretty new to me,” Éwa said, “I mean, when we were in Kindergarten, everyone was just all, ‘ew girls’. Remember, Ralt? You couldn’t hang out with other girls or people would make fun of you. That’s what got you in trouble, huh? Now you can’t hang out with other guys, or they’ll make fun of you too! Who are they gonna hang out with then?”

“Dunno. Everyone hates everything. Big guys got to be all unfeely, so no friends at all.”

“You’re sorta unfeely.”

“Yeah, but I’m not very big, so that makes me very feely.”

“Oh, that’s how it works?”

“Not sure,” I said.

“Why’d you come all the way over here, Ralt?”

“Why’d you come all the way over here, Éwa?”

“Huh? Don’t tell me he’s sick again.”

“Yeah. There’s nobody out here.”

“I’m starting to think he’s not sick at all. He's just skipping school. Or maybe his dad killed him? His dad would do that.”

“He’s not dead.”

“You’re eye is looking a little dark. Did -”

“No. I hit my head off something.”

“By accident?”

“Éwa, come out.”

“I can’t, Ralt. Mademoiselle Rousseau needs me to look after the kids.”

“There’s nobody out here.”

“I know, but…”

“Please?” I cupped my hand over hers on the chain link, “Pleeeease?”

“I know. There’s nobody out there. Nobody but a buncha guys claiming territory. That’s why I’m in here.”

“But, I’m out here…”

“I thought you’d be okay with him there, since he’s tougher than you, but I didn’t know he’d get killed.”

There is nothing out here. I have two friends at school, and we never see eachother outside of recess. They live too far away. There is nothing there too.

Kids in the city always live close together, so they see eachother a lot. TV shows on at seven and six always have a bunch of kids that look like grownups hide together in some secret place for everyone they know; where they hang out and do stupid things that would get them in trouble if it weren’t a secret place. Those things aren’t really all that cool since they’re not real. I mean, it seems nice, but I don’t know one place that’s really secret. I wish I did, but nothing’s secret because wherever you look, you know what’s there: corn and soy beans, all lined up.


I’ve never seen a secret place for everyone. There aren’t any.


They tried. Everyone else thought that a city-like secret place would be cool, so they’re always deciding on places in the schoolyard to be “the spot”. Yard-duty teachers hate when kids hide from them, so they do all sorts of stuff to get back, like suddenly saying a buncha odd things like “the baseball diamond is off limits”, and yell at us whenever we go there. Then they get big guys with chainsaws that look like the ones from comic books to come and take down all the trees and shrubs that we all liked to sit around and soon the entire yard will be plain-lookin’ and bare, so all the secret hiding spots for everyone won’t be secret anymore.


And they were never for everyone. They weren’t for anyone. You can’t just pick any spot to go and chill out, because if the guys who claimed it didn’t like you, they get all rough and mean, and can bruise you up a bit.


Nobody liked me very much.


It was stupid. Real dumb. Maybe it was because everyone tried doing it in the schoolyard where everyone would be anyway, but… I dunno. It was still dumb; they’re a buncha ruggy farm kids hoppin’ to some grand idea because all the cool look-like-kids from the city on the TV do it. I don’t know why we liked their shows; nothing they did ever made any sense.


… but, it still would’ve been cool. Everyone except my two friends hates me and thinks I’m weird. My friends are nice, and I really wish we could always get together without any of the other kids there, or our parents trippin’ over us every moment, but between all our houses is nothing but walls of corn that grow taller than my dad. I would’a gave anything for a spot the three of us could reach and hang out together - a spot we could claim and keep all the other bad kids away from - but it just would never happen.

I hope he’s not dead. His dad is pretty bad.

“Nobody took up everywhere so it made nowhere,” Éwa said, “We don’t have anywhere to go in the schoolyard anymore. They took down the playground because the School Board said it wasn’t safe anymore to play on. But they didn’t have any money to give us a new one. Since then, everyone’s been all angry.

“I heard these kids here aren’t going to be safe from it much longer. I heard Mademoiselle Rousseau yelling at the principal in the staff room, and the principal threatened to fire her if she ever, ever, ever made a fuss about it again or told any kids. The Kindergartener’s stuff will be taken away next month for not being safe.”

“Huh? How?” I was befuddled. I mean… how are plastic boxes and a one foot slide too dangerous? I’m not very big, but I can still STEP onto one of them.

“It’s coming, Ralt. Soon the kids here won’t have anything at all, just like us. I need to help them get used to it, because they’ll never have a playground like we did until Grade Eight, and by then they’ll be too old for playgrounds. That’ll be awful, won’t it?”

Éwa, come out.

“We don’t have anywhere else to go, so this is where we must be.”

… Éwa, come out.

“You can help too. You can go to Mademoiselle Rousseau to come in and be here on recess. You just need to talk with her first.”

I looked behind her to all the kindergarterners inside the pen. Some of them looked trapped inside. Some of them looked happy inside.

“I’m trying to make them all as good of friends as I can. Then, when they go into Grade One and with the rest of the school, they won’t fight for any ‘cool spots’ that might be left.”

“Might be left?” I said, “There will be spots left in an empty yard?”

“At least they won’t fight for it.”

“Can they do it?”

“It’s too late for us, but they can do it.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yeah. I’m sure,” she said.

“But, what if something goes wrong?” I asked, “What if they can’t be friends because they all call eachother gay, or because one of them keeps stealing someone’s pencils? Or because one of them is weird? Or because they like to copy the grownups and be like them? Or because they like to copy us and be like us? Or because they like to copy some TV show and be like the TV show? Or because they like to copy us be like the TV show because they like to copy us being like the TV show? What then?”

“I’m still sure at least one of them can do it.”

“You… You need all of them to do it.”

“No I don’t. I can do it. Each one of them can possibly end this. It’s all in them.”

She looked back to them and said it again. “It’s all in them. It’s in all of them.”

One of the kids there saw me looking at him. Then he pointed out to me and called back.



“Gay!”





“Éwa, come out.”

“I can’t, Ralt.”

“Éwa, come out.”

“I can’t, Ralt.”

“Éwa, come out.”

“I told you, I can’t.”

“Éwa, come -”

“I can’t.”

“… Éwa, come -”

“…”

“Éwa…”

“Don’t pout about me.”

“But…”

“Even if I did come out, where would we go?”

“To the back hill.”

“We can’t go there anymore. They said it’s off limits.”

“To the side trees, next to the baseball diamond.”

“All the younger kids always sit there. The teachers don’t even like it when our age
group is on that side of the yard.”

“Near the backdoor.”

“I saw on my way here. The sixth graders’ claimed it.”

“By the…”

“Where?”

“…”

“We don’t have anywhere we can go.”

“Yes we do.”

“No we don’t.”

“Yes we do!”

“Not here, not in school…”

A kindergartener started tugging on the back of Éwa’s pants.

“Miss,” he said, “Miss, Miss. Those icky girls over there need an extra person to play jump rope with them.”

“Tell them I’ll be there in a moment.”

“No. Stop talking to that homosexual and go.”

“… You’re too young to know that word.”

“Psh. So’re you.”

He left.

I couldn’t feel my heart beating. I was trying too hard to feel if it was beating or not. It hurt. I was hurting myself without even moving.

“I’m sorry about that.”

“Éwa, come out.”

“Don’t worry. Things can change, I promise. The weedend’s tomorrow. Go see Mademoiselle Rousseau Monday morning if he’s still not here, okay? She’s always in her classroom during first recess.”

“Éwa, come out.”

“Recess is almost over. I have to get the kids ready to line up at the door. Don’t worry; because in the long run the adults won’t even matter! We can change things! We can!”

“Éwa, come out.”



“Éwa, come out.”

JH Sounds
01-31-2009, 08:07 PM
...and here's my entry. I even snuck in a reference to SoulinEther's provocative sig. :wink:


To Be Human

Theirs was a simple relationship. He had cherished her eloquence and meticulous way of speaking. She fought very hard to conceal her wondrous smile, but it teasingly showed itself whenever he made a particularly poignant remark. He would try his best to make such remarks for her, often.

Shella was a somewhat timid and introverted woman, but could burst through that thick outer casing to settle a point. She felt she hadn’t much to offer a man physically; Shella wouldn’t be comfortable to be classified as anything more than “kinda cute” by a man. Yet the Stick gravitated toward her with unexpected speed and confidence, a reaction she had only previously witnessed as a small child. Over time she came to realize that he admired and adored her greatly.

Biologically speaking, the Stick had only been alive for a few months. Before this he existed as a fully mobile, talking and vaguely man-shaped piece of unbreakable metal. Possibly from an advanced civilization or a plane of existence mankind could never reach, the Stick became the subject of endless examinations, discussions and debates. In the end, he could only be identified as a “mysterious stick figure”. He was a celebrity among scientists, and yet he was no one in terms of classification.

One of those researchers would go on to become a good friend of the Stick. The eccentric professor Horkuff could easily thrust and parry his endless observations on science, logic and life in general. A vanguard of sorts, the inventor and his extravagant imagination complemented the Stick’s nature-defying form. Horkuff helped him cope with the impermeable nature of his body, though the desires of the Stick would ultimately grow to be too distressing for the professor to argue away. As a metallic being, the Stick had eventually reached an impasse in his existence; he wished to undergo the Pinocchio scenario. The Stick wanted to be a real man at last.

The day came when Horkuff was able to set up the miraculous machine. In a flash the Humanitizer transformed metal to flesh, impregnable mandantium to a beating heart. Even months after the Stick became human, he found it difficult to absorb the minute details of life. While it was hard for him, he treasured every moment, including the prospect of living the rest of his days with a female companion.

Throughout their meetings, dates and phone calls, one question gradually rose into Shella’s consciousness. The question hadn’t fully formed, but it nevertheless sat in shambles nagging. What was it that made the Stick so fascinating? Shella was oblivious to the truth; she knew him not as a shining, unusual form, but as a man named “Fred Stickly”. He approached everything in life as if it were new, as if every facet was a unique pleasure. Little did she realize that each sensation was strange and unknown to the Stick.

The question was finally asked. He played the voice mail over and over, marveling at her smooth voice and yet forcing himself to digest the thought of revealing his true nature to Shella. It was a feeling the Stick had never sensed before, but somehow it felt instinctual. The emotion managed to settle after a while, and he decided to contact Horkuff to better understand the impulses driving him. He attempted to call, but received an automated notice stating that the number was disconnected. Horkuff would never let a line detach. Something was wrong.

***

Another unusual sensation came to the Stick as he arrived at Horkuff’s apartment – he was out of breath. He looked to the right of the entrance and noticed a thin seam where the plaster covered what was once a large hole. At that moment the Stick remembered that he hadn’t seen Horkuff in quite a long time. How… inconsiderate, he felt. It seemed as if he no longer needed the professor as a confidant after the transformation occurred. Was the relationship he considered friendship really just the Stick attempting to connect with humanity?

After knocking several times, he forced the door open with his shoulder. If the Stick had realized how much this would bruise his arm, he probably would have tried an alternative approach. Immediately he saw that the apartment was a mess: The phone lay on its side against the wall, unplugged. Horkuff’s wardrobe spilled past the closet and onto scattered documents. His vanity mirror had been cracked. “Horkuff? Are you here?” The Stick felt tension building in his neck, the dull pain in his shoulder quickening its pulse. “Horkuff!” He maneuvered around an upturned desk and headed for the bathroom.

Peering in, he saw another broken mirror and more clothing strewn about. Through the shower door the Stick could see the vague outline of a head. “Professor…” He stepped forward and onto the shards of glass on the linoleum. “Stop!” said a voice harshly. “Don’t get any closer.” The slight crushing sound of his footsteps apparently alerted the person in the shower. The Stick didn’t recognize the voice at first; it was arid and cold. “I… Leave me alone.”

“Horkuff, it’s me. The Stick.”

The shadow shifted abruptly in the enclosed bathtub. “Stick? Yes, I know that name. My mind’s not gone yet.” His warmth rose as he spoke. “I tried to call, tried to contact you, but my hands – my hands…” The Stick saw an impossibly thin silhouette reaching up for the handle. Fingerless mitts gripped the edge of the translucent door. With a groan it slid open, revealing the being once known as Horkuff.

The Stick put a hand to the scientist’s smooth, hardened chest. He gasped; it felt icy. “Wow. I wasn’t aware that my body had been so brisk.” His fingers slowly ran up Horkuff’s rigid arm and onto the glistening sphere of his head. A bellbottomed calf gently struck the side of the shower and made a CLONK sound. “What happened to you, professor? Why didn’t you get help?”

“I’ve told you - my hands!” Horkuff raised his arms limply. “Could you have imagined? The most handsome scientist of his age reduced to an overblown lollipop with limbs!” He let out a strange mixture of cackling and a chuckle. “I couldn’t go out in public! My reputation! My image!” He then slapped himself several times, each hit emitting what sounded like billiard balls bouncing against each other. Somehow, the Stick assumed, a bizarre accident caused Horkuff to become Stick-like. His sanity was going.

“So,” said the professor, trying to change the subject. “How’s Shella?”

The Stick’s jaw dropped, but his lips remained pressed until he spoke. “She’s... Well, she’s the reason I came here. But if I had known that you were in this condition—”

“Hah.” It was unclear whether he had given a laugh or a weak cough. “Never mind that now. Let’s talk about 6A.”

The exasperated expression of the Stick resembled that of his earlier form. “Excuse me?”

“Experiment 6A. The experiment that made you human, remember?” He grinned. “Part of the result was the relationship you began and continued with Shella. To make my complete assessment I need a full testament of your connection to the female.” After all that had happened to Horkuff, he still had an analytical head working. Rather than risk compounding the dilemma, the Stick humored him.

“Well, she’s a wonderful woman…” He smiled faintly. “Turns out her father was this peculiar poet laureate who wrote works exploring the components of existence. He received a great amount of attention, but Shella didn’t really want any of that – being a famous poet’s daughter, scrutinized for her dad’s views. She’s very articulate, a bit shy.”

“Yes, and did you… Engage in intercourse?”

A new feeling exploded inside the Stick. Possibly embarrassment, but with unmistakable tinges of anger. “I… I really don’t think this is appropriate—”

Horkuff suddenly grabbed the sides of his own head and twisted it, as if attempting to snap his neck. “Third base, huh? I think I’ve forgotten what that feels like.” The sound he made this time was definitely laughter. “Maybe she’s too shy for your purposes.”

The spots of irritation within the Stick erupted into a mild rage. “Professor, please. You can’t be thinking clearly. Surely there must be a way of turning you back to what you were.” He looked back to the living room. “The machine, the Humanitizer - where is it?”

“I gutted it a while back, Stick. I really did need a new refrigerator.”

“Then you can rebuild it – I can rebuild it, and you can tell me how to get it in working order.”

“Don’t you think I would have thought of that? The situation is much more complicated than you might have guessed.” Horkuff’s mind appeared to straighten again. “When I used the device to make you human, your internal mandantium initiated some sort of transfer process. Without realizing it, I had caused the flesh-converted element to dissolve and flow into my body, where it settled and gradually made me into – well, into something like you used to be.” For a minute his thoughts overtook him.

An emotion the Stick precisely knew to be guilt swelled. “It’s all my fault. If I hadn’t been on some crusade to be more than I was, you would be well and good and I—”

“You would be on a faraway planet, utilizing your immortality to visit the outer reaches of the universe.” Horkuff let out a sigh. “The things you’ve seen, Stick. I could scarcely perceive what you have explored, what you can explore… and now I know why you wished to be human. To you, it really is the final frontier.” He sat up and took on a serene gaze. “For me to revert to my previous state, well… There’s bit of a catch to that. If my calculations are correct – and they usually are – the only way to reverse the process is to transfer the mandantium to its original host.”

“You mean to say…” and the Stick’s stomach sank. For months he had taken the first steps toward the rest of his life, but he now understood that it could not be. Being a man was not as important as saving a friend.

***

Shella became somewhat anxious, lying in bed with increasing concern. Fred usually calls me back when I leave voice mail, she thought to herself. She dialed again, but changed her mind and put the receiver down. Looking to the ceiling, she let the soft yellow glow calm her before snuffing the lamp out for the night. At the desk near her bed lay an old, leather-bound journal. She picked it up and felt the uneven grain of the cover. In the moonlight Shella could hardly see the notes her father had written so many years ago. Even the embossed lettering on the front was obscured through the glare of her glasses. Instead she thumbed the pages, causing the musty smell to fall onto her face. For a few seconds her inhibitions fell away, and she smiled the grandest of smiles.

“You are so beautiful,” spoke the voice of Fred.

Shella reached out for the lamp, but it had been moved out of sight. “Fred, what’s going on? Did you let yourself in? I’ve been so worried.” She squinted in the near-darkness and saw his shape in the corner. “I thought I had scared you away when I asked you weird things about your background. That’s the problem with me – I think I pry too much.”

“You have every right to be curious. There is something I’ve been keeping from you.”

Shella leaned forward, straining to see in the dim light as her eyes began to adjust. He backed into the shadows slightly in response. “What is it that you insist on hiding, Fred? Why are you so afraid to tell me?”

“Well,” his voice jumped. “I… I guess I feared that your questioning would lead to the end of our relationship. I thought that once you knew of the predicament, knew what I am, that it would be too odd to continue being with me.”

As she shook her head, brief luminosity reflected off of her spectacles. “Don’t you understand? I want to know more about you because I care about you. I want – I just have this need to unlock the secrets of the man whom I… whom I love.”

It all seemed to come together. “Yes, those are the two main points. For one, I don’t think the word ‘man’ applies anymore.” The room fell silent as he searched for the right phrasing. “The other point is… something else, something I hadn’t expected – love. My initial intent was to find a partner with whom to propagate and live out a mortal existence. The actual when and where of the steps would of course be of her preference. The thing I hadn’t factored was the connection, the strength of love, and how it would inevitably bring out the truth of the situation.” Silence enveloped the room again, and in a few moments the words came to him. “I love you, Shella.”

Then her eyes finally adapted to the murky night, and Shella could see everything.

SoulinEther
02-01-2009, 04:20 AM
what the hell is UTC?

(edit: i do know what UTC is, just wasn't aware of this contest using it...)

Well, I still have another contest in March. Hopefully I won't be as busy then.

HalcyonSpirit
02-01-2009, 07:38 AM
First order of business:

what the hell is UTC?

(edit: i do know what UTC is, just wasn't aware of this contest using it...)

Well, I still have another contest in March. Hopefully I won't be as busy then.

We weren't using it until I came along. I'm an engineer, what can you expect? :-P

A shame you weren't able to finish your poem, though. Maybe next time, eh? You can still post it in the general Writing Thread in OffTop; if nothing else, I still want to read it!

-----

Second order of business:

I've largely been cut off from the Internet for the past 9 hours, so I couldn't post my "finished" work until right this moment... I wrote this piece in one sitting, all today, and it probably isn't good at all. I didn't really even edit it and I did really rush it. In any case, here's my entry into the competition (it's a miracle I got anything done at all!):

Waiting by HalcyonSpirit (http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=d9gmxjm_9d6c5txcm)

-----

Third order of business:

The submission stage is now officially over! (Well, it was over 7.5 hours ago, but like I said above, I got cut off from the Internet for a bit...) In any case, we've got 8 entries for this round! Wonderful!

The Solo by Rophell (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=493926&postcount=46)
Iron Desire by AJiLe (http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=dccv7tpq_0hfbqqgvm)
The Stone by Stove_Top (http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=dgx86zjq_06z55n4cz)
Twins by Jam Stunna (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=496997&postcount=59)
Heaven in a Box by Random Hajile (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=498520&postcount=67)
Girl Stuff by M W (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=501455&postcount=73)
To Be Human by just64helpin (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=501632&postcount=74)
Waiting by HalcyonSpirit (http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=d9gmxjm_9d6c5txcm)

You have two (2) weeks to vote! Remember to review the voting rules if this is your first time voting, and good luck to everyone!

HalcyonSpirit
02-08-2009, 11:25 PM
One week left to vote! I've gotten one person's vote so far.

SoulinEther
02-09-2009, 05:00 AM
One week left to vote! I've gotten one person's vote so far.

How many votes of extraterrestrials have you received so far?

I'll print em out tonight, look over them throughout the week on the bus to and from school.

edit: well, instead of doing homework, I read them all. It's interesting how much love and death seemed to have influenced so many of them... (what a surprise, they're of the most popular topics in art... lol)...

...and yet how none of them have a very conclusive ending.

My submission would have included a reference to death, too. I wonder if there's a rational explanation for this phenomenon. I get the love, it could have been caused by my signature, but the death? :/

Anyway, I'll be racking my brains regarding this for a while. EXCELLENT SUBMISSIONS. :nicework:

Washington Maverick
02-10-2009, 01:54 AM
So...not entirely. but I'm back gentlemen, it's been a long while, and my freshman debut put me out on top, and I haven't had time to do any submissions since then. I realize it's in vote phase, so I'll wait for the next re-up, but I'm hopping back in, and it's good to see some of the folks that were here when I was last still kicking. See you soon!

HalcyonSpirit
02-10-2009, 05:42 AM
WM: Good to have you back! Just remember that you can vote on the current submissions as well!

How many votes of extraterrestrials have you received so far?

Surprisingly, none. Usually we get at least 5 different votes from them by now. :-P

As for the topics... well, it is the winter months in the northern hemisphere. People tend to get thoughtful on these subjects during this time of apparent death and melancholy... or at least I do.

SoulinEther
02-10-2009, 08:31 AM
Welcome back WM... i'm still reeling from the awesomeness that was your short story.

Surprisingly, none. Usually we get at least 5 different votes from them by now.

Ah, too bad. :/

oh and i will post that poem... soon. I need to get into my mood though. You know, self-hating, world-loathing brilliance doesn't happen when you've got that spring in your step. lol nah it's not that bad.

M W
02-10-2009, 09:15 PM
Huh. There's a lot of Science Fiction this round.

I feel almost a little... nonconformist, writing without speculation.

SoulinEther
02-11-2009, 09:54 AM
Huh. There's a lot of Science Fiction this round.

I feel almost a little... nonconformist, writing without speculation.

hey you're right.... it must have been the "non-sexual" in my signature :/

JH Sounds
02-12-2009, 03:57 PM
If anyone wants to critique my entry, you can enter it over here (http://www.fictionpress.com/secure/review.php?storyid=2630713&chapter=1&storytextid=5226934) so I can keep track of it.

M W
02-13-2009, 01:43 AM
hey you're right.... it must have been the "non-sexual" in my signature :/

I don't think it's that. I've read some pretty interest theory on fantasy/scifi. One of the things pitched was that most writers of genre fiction tend to magnetically attract eachother for some strange reason.

... in the case of diehard scifi, there are probably actual magnets involved.

SoulinEther
02-13-2009, 07:02 AM
I don't think it's that.So you don't think most people turn to fantasizing about alternative universes if not presented with the option of sex?

(I really didn't think it was the case either ;))

edit: voting this round is hard. :/ thats a good thing, though.

HalcyonSpirit
02-16-2009, 12:36 AM
OK people... I'm disappointed. It's the end of the official voting period, and I've got 5 PMs in my inbox with votes. So I've got 6 votes in total, including mine. One of those votes was from someone who didn't even enter this round, and I know Rophell can't vote because he got ban-hammered. There were 8 entries, so two of you people didn't vote this round.

This... is... UNACCEPTABLE!!! *boots them into the pit of writing oblivion*

Alright, enough with the dramatics. For those of you who haven't voted yet (and I'm including all you people who didn't enter this round, too), you're in luck. It just so happens that I have a test tomorrow that I need to study for and a job hunt to perform on Tuesday, so chances are I won't be able to count the votes until after that. If you submit your votes before I come back with the results, they will be counted. Just keep in mind that I'm only doing this because I want more votes for this round.


Note to self: Next round, send out PMs to all current and former entrants reminding them to vote.

SoulinEther
02-16-2009, 03:47 AM
Note to self: Next round, send out PMs to all current and former entrants reminding them to vote.

Bout time you realized what a great idea that was MR ENGINEER!!

Uses UTC but can't even send out PMs for votes... man.. what a... (mumbles)

just messin. Did you send out PMs to the people who didn't vote already in the compo?

HalcyonSpirit
02-17-2009, 10:35 PM
Well, I'm back, and no more votes have been submitted. Therefore...

THE RESULTS ARE IN!

1st Place: Waiting by HalcyonSpirit
Runner-Up: Iron Desire by AJiLe

Here's the vote spread:

Waiting by HalcyonSpirit: 7
Iron Desire by AJiLe: 6
The Solo by Rophell: 5
Girl Stuff by M W: 4
Heaven in a Box by Random Hajile: 4
Twins by Jam Stunna: 3
To Be Human by just64helpin: 2
The Stone by Stove_Top: 2


Congratulations to everyone who participated in this round! I thoroughly enjoyed reading all the entries. There are definitely some quality writers on this forum. AJiLe, congrats on making Runner-Up; your entry was somewhat unique while retaining a bit of simplicity, and I like that in a story.

As for the winner... well, shit. Color me surprised. Seriously, I was not expecting my entry to do well at all, let alone win a competition here for me for the first time ever. Thank you, it definitely gives me some more confidence in my own writing.

I may actually have time between now and the start of the next competition to do some reviews of these entries. If you would like me to review yours specifically, let me know and I can make it a priority. I can post such reviews in the thread, or you can have me PM you them. Either way, just let me know.

Good job everyone! I'm looking forward to the next round!

SoulinEther
02-17-2009, 11:34 PM
Yes, good job Halcyon, AJiLe, and everyone who participated..

And, like Mr. Engineer-UTC-User-Non-PM-Sender-Winner said: if you are dying for a critique, just ask; i'll try to make your wish my command.

I'll assume just64helpin wants one so I'll TRY to start with his.

AJiLe
02-18-2009, 01:28 PM
wow! congrats all around on a close and fun competition! and great job HalcyonSpirit.. your story was quite moving. it's really too bad that Rophell was banned(?) i wonder why that happened; i really liked his story.

anyhow, good luck on the next compo and... and.. i'll get you next time, Gadget.

M W
02-19-2009, 02:26 AM
I was hoping I could do a bit better this round, but I guess I didn't exactly... fit in? Science fiction was a dominant force.

SoulinEther
02-19-2009, 02:45 AM
I was hoping I could do a bit better this round, but I guess I didn't exactly... fit in? Science fiction was a dominant force.

Don't think you did bad or that you weren't better. Your story was good, and I liked it better than your poem (more fleshed out, though the poem was very concise).

It's just... everyone was so good. For me, voting was almost all about what I liked most and not what was deserving based on merit because... these were all great submissions with few to no serious issues that would really turn me against a piece.

Jam Stunna
02-19-2009, 02:57 AM
Good stuff everyone! Congratulations to the winners.

HalcyonSpirit
02-19-2009, 04:31 AM
It's just... everyone was so good. For me, voting was almost all about what I liked most and not what was deserving based on merit because... these were all great submissions with few to no serious issues that would really turn me against a piece.

This. This right here. Merit still played a majority role in my decision, but personal preference was a big factor too this time due to the sheer quality of all the entries.

I think the vote would've been even closer than it was had more people actually turned up to vote. Personal preference did play a larger role in this round, a role that could've been canceled out with a large number of votes. So for the entrants who didn't get as many votes, know that your piece was right up there with the winners'.

TheHands
02-19-2009, 06:28 AM
Woah. Now I'm a little bummed I missed this one, this looks like it would've been fun. Grats to all ^_^

M W
02-24-2009, 04:41 AM
Don't think you did bad or that you weren't better. Your story was good, and I liked it better than your poem (more fleshed out, though the poem was very concise).

Not to advertise, but if that's the truth, you'd be happy to be informed of where it was excerpted from (http://revasser.net/bookshelf.html#Yggdrasil).

Novelettes are so prejudiced against. It's either short stories or novellas. Seldom anything inbetween.

SoulinEther
02-25-2009, 07:40 AM
Not to advertise, but if that's the truth, you'd be happy to be informed of where it was excerpted from (http://revasser.net/bookshelf.html#Yggdrasil).

Novelettes are so prejudiced against. It's either short stories or novellas. Seldom anything inbetween.

It isn't all that common, no.

The short story makes a little more sense in the larger context, heh.

(just btw, your layout looks very... interesting. Not boring. perhaps just bordering on overly-crowded-insane-madness but taking a step back from being overboard)

HalcyonSpirit
03-02-2009, 06:14 AM
Oh hey guys, the March Short Story round has already begun.

HAVE AT IT!

SoulinEther
03-04-2009, 01:59 AM
orly.

I think I have an idea for a short story, too. Let's see if I can devote the time to writing?

wouldntyouliketoknow
03-11-2009, 07:50 AM
I love writing, and thought that I'd see what I can improve. So here's my first entry:

http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=dctkqp7r_0hs5ptphj

Unfortunately, it's too long to fit on a post.... Critique is welcomed! Thanks.

JH Sounds
03-11-2009, 12:42 PM
So... No critiques for the freeform entries, then?

HalcyonSpirit
03-11-2009, 04:17 PM
...

FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF!

I knew I forgot something! I'll see what I can do, but I'm in the middle of working on my design project at the moment.

M W
03-18-2009, 01:21 AM
I'm proud to report that I'm finished.

I cannot provide a draft here, since it obviously exceeds the character allotment per post. Please go to http://project.revasser.net/journal/?p=27 to read it.

HalcyonSpirit
03-25-2009, 05:07 AM
One week left! One week left until the end of the current round of submissions! Let's get crackin', people! *subtly reveals whip in hands*

SoulinEther
03-26-2009, 02:20 AM
One week left! One week left until the end of the current round of submissions! Let's get crackin', people! *subtly reveals whip in hands*

What whip?

I have something started... I still need to write the whole thing.

edit: FML. I just wasted 3 hours of my lab-work time... and wrote this.

Worn-Out Stilettos by Yousef Reda
http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=dfzbswsw_18csfm6tdz

SoulinEther
03-29-2009, 09:37 AM
If there isn't one more submission, the submission stage will be extended by two weeks, no?

Ok, for real, I have a whip, and I'm not afraid to use it (though I really don't know where any of you are so.. great threat.)

HalcyonSpirit
03-29-2009, 04:40 PM
If there isn't one more submission, the submission stage will be extended by two weeks, no?

One week, actually.

Don't expect anything from me, though. I've been too busy hunting for jobs and searching for apartments the past two weeks to do anything that isn't college-related. A week or two from now I should have lots of free time, but a week or two from now isn't now.

SoulinEther
03-29-2009, 06:11 PM
One week, actually.

Don't expect anything from me, though. I've been too busy hunting for jobs and searching for apartments the past two weeks to do anything that isn't college-related. A week or two from now I should have lots of free time, but a week or two from now isn't now.

Your reply of 1 week puts my memory and laziness (to just check) to shame, lol.

Well, good luck to you on that, sir.

HalcyonSpirit
04-03-2009, 01:32 AM
A bit late, but all things considered it doesn't matter as much...

Since we only have 3 entries at the moment, we're extending the submission stage to a week from today. So by 11:59PM on April 9th there needs to be one more entry or else we may need to scrub this round.

Anyone think the minimum entry number should be 3 instead of 4? I was thinking about this earlier, and I think it might be better if it was. If it is changed, I'll have it apply to this round as well.

wouldntyouliketoknow
04-03-2009, 05:12 AM
I vote three, if not just to allow this one to go through. Though another entry would be nice. Is it against the rules to get a friend to submit anything, just so it would be four? So long as it's not rigging the voting, it's allowed right?

HalcyonSpirit
04-03-2009, 04:15 PM
If it was written in the timespan of the current round, there's nothing wrong with having a friend submit something. Naturally, we can't really know if it actually was written during the current round or not unless you say something (or it shows up on a Google search), so we generally go on good faith with regard to that rule.

Also, I'm going to see if I can whip something up this weekend. It'll be a stretch to be sure, especially with all the work I still need to do, but I'm going to try!

SoulinEther
04-04-2009, 12:49 AM
I'm down with whatever, though I believe "the more the merrier."

HalcyonSpirit
04-10-2009, 05:42 PM
Sorry guys, nothing from me. Too much technical writing to be done for my design project. I'm also going to change the lower limit for submissions to 3 instead of 4 for the time being. We'll see how it goes; I'll change it back if it doesn't work out.

We've got three submissions for this round! Please read them and vote! You have two weeks to do so!

The Puppetmaster by wouldntyouliketoknow (http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=dctkqp7r_0hs5ptphj)
Leearjecht by M W (http://www.project.revasser.net/journal/?p=27)
Worn-Out Stilettos by Yousef Reda (SoulinEther) (http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=dfzbswsw_18csfm6tdz)

I'll be sending out PMs to current and former authors as reminders of the voting process in the near future.

M W
04-10-2009, 06:16 PM
Hrm... With only three stories, voting will be pretty decisive. ... At least for me, anyway. That's one of mine up there.

SoulinEther
04-11-2009, 05:55 AM
Hrm... With only three stories, voting will be pretty decisive. ... At least for me, anyway. That's one of mine up there.

I know. I hope people who have competed in prior contests vote this round.

HalcyonSpirit
04-16-2009, 11:38 PM
I know. I hope people who have competed in prior contests vote this round.

Well, with any luck they will, since I'm about to start sending out PMs to authors in this and the previous thread. I think I got everyone that's been active on the forum relatively recently... Not including myself or Imagery (for obvious reasons), it comes to 18 people. I think that's pretty significant for a competition that doesn't see much advertising and is done on a non-writing site. I updated the news section with this PM policy, which has been restated below:

"As of this round, I am beginning the practice of PMing authors from previous competitions upon the start of each voting stage. I may do the same for the submission stages in the future; we'll see how the voting stage reminders work out first. If anyone receives a PM from me regarding this and does NOT want me to do so in the future, they can PM me asking to have themselves removed from the list and it will be done."

By the way, does anyone know how to get in contact with the banhammered ZeaLity?


Also, I changed the minimum entry requirement (again). I think this is the best compromise, and follows what we've done this time: "Competitions, to be viable, must have at least three (3) entries. Additionally, if a minimum of four (4) entries are not submitted before the end of the official submission stage, the submission deadline will automatically be extended one (1) week."

SoulinEther
04-17-2009, 06:20 AM
"As of this round, I am beginning the practice of PMing authors from previous competitions upon the start of each voting stage. I may do the same for the submission stages in the future; we'll see how the voting stage reminders work out first. If anyone receives a PM from me regarding this and does NOT want me to do so in the future, they can PM me asking to have themselves removed from the list and it will be done."
I thought you've been doing this all along? Lol. This makes sense.


By the way, does anyone know how to get in contact with the banhammered ZeaLity?
I think you'd be opening up a can of worms with that.


Also, I changed the minimum entry requirement (again). I think this is the best compromise, and follows what we've done this time: "Competitions, to be viable, must have at least three (3) entries. Additionally, if a minimum of four (4) entries are not submitted before the end of the official submission stage, the submission deadline will automatically be extended one (1) week."
This idea is very nice.

HalcyonSpirit
04-23-2009, 02:34 PM
Two days left to vote! Not including my vote, I've only recieved votes from three people! Where's the participation?!

SoulinEther
04-24-2009, 12:15 AM
Two days left to vote! Not including my vote, I've only recieved votes from three people! Where's the participation?!

It's my birthday, cut me some slack eh? :D

JH Sounds
04-24-2009, 12:25 AM
It's my birthday, cut me some slack eh? :D

Happy birthday! :grin:

SoulinEther
04-24-2009, 02:00 AM
Happy birthday! :grin:

Why thank you. Now I just need to vote lol.

HalcyonSpirit
04-25-2009, 01:03 AM
Alright, as of a minute ago, the official voting period has ended. However, I'm unable to count the votes because I'm in the middle of a time-critical assignment. So it looks like there's a few more hours left for you guys. I'll ignore the late timestamps on any PM's from now until I post the results.

Oh, and I only have four votes so far. For shame, you guys. For shame.

Soul Splint
04-25-2009, 03:25 AM
Hey guys,
When will the next competition be? And what style? I'd be interested in submitting.

SoulinEther
04-25-2009, 07:29 AM
Hey guys,
When will the next competition be? And what style? I'd be interested in submitting.

Next competition should start May 1st, I imagine. Poetry.

JH Sounds
04-25-2009, 12:49 PM
Whuh oh, there's way too many soul-spirits in this thread now. :-P

Soul Splint
04-25-2009, 01:43 PM
Whuh oh, there's way too many soul-spirits in this thread now. :-P


???? Is this a reference to me or something earlier in the thread?

JH Sounds
04-25-2009, 01:53 PM
???? Is this a reference to me or something earlier in the thread?

A little of both. :wink:

Soul Splint
04-25-2009, 02:33 PM
Ah. Gotcha. Well, I don't know about poetry, but the next time you guys do a short story round (or something similar) I'm there.

HalcyonSpirit
04-25-2009, 10:16 PM
Yeah, next up is Poetry for May/June, then Freeform July/August, and back to Short Story in September/October. Every two months another competition starts, and it runs through that order each time.

In any case...

THE RESULTS ARE IN!

1st Place: Worn-Out Stilettos by Yousef Reda (SoulinEther)
Runner-Up: The Puppetmaster by wouldntyouliketoknow

Here's the vote spread:

Worn-Out Stilettos by Yousef Reda (SoulinEther): 8
The Puppetmaster by wouldntyouliketoknow: 7
Leearjecht by M W: 6


Good job everyone, and congrats to the winners. Only 5 voters this round (including myself), so not exactly the best turnout for both the submission voting stages. Still, it was a good round.

Can't stay and chat any longer, sorry. Design project is calling out my ass.

wouldntyouliketoknow
04-26-2009, 12:18 AM
Well congratulations SoulinEther, that was a good story. That was a close round though, wish more people voted...

So now that it's over, critique?

HalcyonSpirit
04-26-2009, 12:24 AM
So now that it's over, critique?


When my design report goes to hell (aka gets submitted).

M W
04-26-2009, 01:13 AM
...

Aw.

.....

JH Sounds
04-26-2009, 01:59 AM
When my design report goes to hell (aka gets submitted).

That seems a bit familiar...

I knew I forgot something! I'll see what I can do, but I'm in the middle of working on my design project at the moment.

HalcyonSpirit
04-26-2009, 02:06 AM
Hey. Hey. The report is due by the 8th, so it won't be much longer until I can finally sit down and critique.

Besides, summer is coming up. Surely that'll give me time to do such things. After all, it's not like any aerospace company wants to hire me for the summer! :banghead:

SoulinEther
04-26-2009, 07:25 AM
I really didn't see this coming... this is the opposite of how I voted!

So.. thanks.

But! I thought we all came up with excellent work. The voting indicated that - the three submissions are within 1 vote of each other, and it didn't help that there only three submissions...

the only cure: more authors need to be writing and more votes should be cast.

my current goal: critique, and make a new sig to spread the word about this competition (with great timing, too... this April OCR month sig will expire when the next contest should start).

M W
04-26-2009, 07:00 PM
I think the one I had up there could stand some critique as well; it did come in last, after all.

If anyone has a moment before the next competition starts, by all means.

HalcyonSpirit
05-01-2009, 03:25 AM
It's now May! Time for the Poetry round!

On your marks, get set... WRITE!!!

Dr.Flintlock
05-02-2009, 04:48 AM
So I'm looking at submitting something for the first time here and I just wanted to make sure I got everything straight.

-I know it has to be poetry under the specified word count, but does it have to be just one poem? Or can it be a series of short ones?
-Is any kind of poem, regardless of style or genre, accepted by the deadline?
-I know fanfiction and directly ripping someone elses work is a big negative, but are tributes or takes on another poet's ideas and themes accepted? Ex: One likes some of Lovecraft's poetry dealing with 'Night-Gaunts' and chooses to write something that may take place in a similar world or style, but still be their own creation entirely.

I'm a pretty avid practitioner of creative writing and am looking forward to seeing what's sent out for our viewing pleasure. Perusing over some of the previous stories/writings/etc, I like what I'm seeing.

HalcyonSpirit
05-02-2009, 03:33 PM
Welcome aboard! Also nice to have fresh faces in the competition.

1. Just one poem. If you can manage to string together a few and submit it as a single poem, that would be acceptable, but the issue will of course be that the quality will suffer if you can't make them work together as a single entity.

2. If it's poetry of any form, it is acceptable.

3. Allusion to other works is fine; just make sure you don't cross the line into fan-writing. Also, ripping something off of another person's work isn't welcomed (as in, really blatantly ripping something from someone else's work). The example you gave should be alright, just be careful when toeing that line.

Dr.Flintlock
05-03-2009, 01:23 AM
Fair enough, thanks.

I'll see what what I can come up with. Good hunting everyone =P

DJ-Arthur
05-14-2009, 07:09 PM
Allright, I'll enter with this:

A Black Soul

Black.
The color of my soul.
Mysterious,
but black.

My soul,
Dark and withdrawn.
My essence,
not existing.

Her Aura,
A shining light.
Piercing,
my darkness.

A tear,
of my loved one.
It cleanses,
it heals.

My soul,
my essence.
Black still,
but Dark no more.


by Arthur van Dijk

Native Jovian
05-14-2009, 07:38 PM
Poems, huh? How about a haiku:

Hand me my shotgun.
There are zombies everywhere.
But I'll deal with them.

SoulinEther
05-14-2009, 11:04 PM
Might as well toss in what I was contemplating submitting. I wanted to go for something more profound and serious but..... this was all I could come up with.

It's actually supposed to be a song, but it's still poetry.

If Sperm Could Fly Away
by Yousef Reda / SoulinEther

If sperm could fly away
in the middle of the act
would they simply choose to stay
have a chat and form a pact?

Or would they turn and leave
open up a big umbrella?
A sight to make you heave
undulating flagella.

No calming interjection--
How's that for warm rejection?

If sperm could fly away
after a lonely thrill
where would they go to play,
how would they have their fill?

And would they be selective
about just whom they please?
Would they feel so festive
to have you on your knees?

Reciprocal ingestion,
Calming indigestion?

If sperm could fly away
in the streets where women talk
would they stir the fray
a hairy running flock?

Would women be so kind
as to welcome their new guests
offer some eggs with rind
to the sperm they'll soon ingest?

So many do it as it is,
Why not freely get your frizz?

If sperm could fly away
to the streets where some men walk
would they shout out "Hey!"
and then cut off their... locks?

Or would they say, "Good day,
I believe we've met before.
I'm Bob Mike John Lucas Ray,
doing cart runs for the store!"

Hah, you thought I was being perverted.
Good sir or madam, your moral compass is inverted!

If sperm could fly away,
we'd be a terribly screwed up lot.
I hope to never see the day
when semen ties the knot!

Soul Splint
05-15-2009, 06:09 PM
Wow.
Just...wow.
I don't think I've ever heard something so dirty done so poetically.
What kind of response are you looking for from this? I can't make up my mind; do I laugh or applaud the elegant structure and syntax?
I guess I'll try to clap while I choke on the cashews I was attempting to eat.

SoulinEther
05-16-2009, 01:07 AM
Oh, I don't know. I think the most appropriate response is "when it's 2:30 in the morning, and you've got a choice between going to bed or staying up an extra hour to write a poem about sperm, please take a shovel and stab your eyes out à la Oedipus for the good of mankind"

Soul Splint
05-16-2009, 01:43 AM
HAHAHA
Well, oddly enough, early in the morning is often when some of my best "writerly" ideas strike me. I can't say such thoughts have ever produced a poem about levitating sex cells...but then again, maybe I'm just not that talented.
Kudos on the writing and the humor.

TheKrow
05-16-2009, 02:15 AM
It's actually supposed to be a song, but it's still poetry.

Dare I ask what this song was originally for?

SoulinEther
05-16-2009, 02:20 AM
Dare I ask what this song was originally for?

I guess you meant "what" and my answer is "For my demented brain."

Instrumentally, guitar accompaniment with some more of those "wacky" instruments, and maybe a timpani.

TheKrow
05-16-2009, 02:24 AM
Ah yes, sorry, I did mean "what". And as far as sounds go, I can definitely picture the song with a "boing-boing" sound of some sort.

SoulinEther
05-21-2009, 04:57 AM
10 days, people! halcyonspirit needs to bust out his whip again, lol.

And classes are almost done for me. I'll desperately try to provide feedback for the last competition.

Random Hajile
05-21-2009, 08:25 AM
Paintings

Once, I tried to paint a picture of you,
With words. It didn't work.
Somehow my colors didn't reflect your light
In just the way I wanted.
Frustrated, I tried again to master my brush
And set it to it's task,
But forcing it only marred the picture,
And that - I couldn't have.
I finally had to tell myself that I had tried
To bridge two worlds.
For my hued words were but your simile,
My painting - Your doomed metaphor.

HalcyonSpirit
05-24-2009, 05:20 PM
10 days, people! halcyonspirit needs to bust out his whip again, lol.

... Hmmmmm... whaaaaat...? :sleepdepriv:

http://i705.photobucket.com/albums/ww57/HalcyonSpirit71/Misc/SoulinEtherWhip.png
... You seem to have that under control anyway...


One week until the end of the submission stage, everyone! Chop chop!

:sleepzzz:

SoulinEther
05-25-2009, 11:09 PM
... Hmmmmm... whaaaaat...? :sleepdepriv:

http://i705.photobucket.com/albums/ww57/HalcyonSpirit71/Misc/SoulinEtherWhip.png
... You seem to have that under control anyway...


One week until the end of the submission stage, everyone! Chop chop!

:sleepzzz:

Arg, guilty, as charged.

SoulinEther
05-29-2009, 06:51 AM
If we include Jovian's haiku, there are 4 submissions this round, but if we don't, then.. this will be another month of overtime and hey i still need to critique those last works... i suddenly feel like a dip.

oh and 2 days left people.

wouldntyouliketoknow
05-29-2009, 07:55 AM
like a radiant campfire, warming every heart lucky enough to feel its warmth,
like the shimmering moon, sometimes brightening the darkness, sometimes leaving nothing,
like a young kitten with a ball of yarn, completely contempt with the simple pleasures,
like a blank page, full of promise with so much to become,
like the greener grass on the other side of the fence,
as intricate as a diamond (and just as stunning),
like the first snowfall of winter, so pure and delicate,
like a flickering shadow, full of unpredictable, mysterious movements,
like the very universe itself, forever expanding its horizons and full of wonder,
like the morning dew, glistening in the immaculate sunrise,
like Christmas morning, you never know what you’re going to get,
like a yellow brick road to Wonderland,
like a perfect snowflake, beautifully unique,
as brilliant as the brightest star, still shining millions of light years away.

HalcyonSpirit
05-29-2009, 07:07 PM
Well, looks like that makes four. No overtime this time, it seems.

Oh, and while the voting stage will begin as scheduled on the 1st, I probably won't be able to change the thread title or announce it or anything for a day or two afterward. I'm moving into my new apartment on the 1st, and I probably won't have internet access for a few days after that. I'll see if I can get into the design lab at my college in the meantime.

Washington Maverick
05-30-2009, 07:35 PM
Well, looks like that makes four. No overtime this time, it seems.

Oh, and while the voting stage will begin as scheduled on the 1st, I probably won't be able to change the thread title or announce it or anything for a day or two afterward. I'm moving into my new apartment on the 1st, and I probably won't have internet access for a few days after that. I'll see if I can get into the design lab at my college in the meantime.

That gives me just enough time to whip something up!

I'm baaaaaaaaaack, from a long hiatus, and I'm happy to be here. Hope to be continuing my undefeated streak. Looking forward to reading all the submissions too!

Washington Maverick
05-30-2009, 08:05 PM
Java

From down under it comes
and from latin fields
from careworn hands
and two acre yields

from cracked dirt plains
lush forests green
it fills the vein
leaves teeth unclean

hot, it fills nostrils
mouths take it in
hands wrapped tight
around cups paper thin

mugs of brown joe
smooth muddy grain
gives me the buzz to
hit the road again

M W
05-30-2009, 11:32 PM
re...(2)

e

e

cu
mm

in

gs e
a

t yo
ur h
e

ar

t ou
t

HalcyonSpirit
05-31-2009, 12:55 AM
Clever, real clever. :lol:

That is supposed to be an entry [y/n]

M W
05-31-2009, 07:38 PM
Clever, real clever. :lol:

That is supposed to be an entry [y/n]

Eh, why not. I can use more points for voting that way.

Dr.Flintlock
06-01-2009, 06:08 AM
Bah, I finished something, but completely forgot that its now June 1st. If quasi-late submissions are allowed, I'll gladly submit. Othewrise I'll just have to wait for the next one.

In any case, I can always spectate/provide feedback this round.

Edit: I reread the criteria for said competition. I guess I'm sitting this one out. Ah well. Carry on.

SoulinEther
06-01-2009, 07:11 AM
Don't feel bad. I missed one round because I didn't know it was using UTC. Today was tomorrow.

HalcyonSpirit
06-03-2009, 01:22 AM
I'm baaaack! Did you miss me?

This round's turnout of seven entries is the best I've seen for Poetry in recent memory (which, to be honest, isn't all that extensive for me). Looks like we got some quality works here, too, so I'm hoping to see a large voting turnout as well!

Current Submissions
for the May 2009 Poetry Competition:

A Black Soul by DJ-Arthur (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=546487&postcount=142)
Untitled Haiku by Native Jovian (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=546498&postcount=143)
If Sperm Could Fly Away by SoulinEther (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=546576&postcount=144)
Paintings by Random Hajile (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=549068&postcount=152)
You are... by wouldntyouliketoknow (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=551877&postcount=156)
Java by Washington Maverick (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=552389&postcount=159)
re...(2) by M W (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=552442&postcount=160)

SoulinEther
06-11-2009, 08:10 AM
Oh crap voting!

HalcyonSpirit
06-14-2009, 06:01 AM
Final voting day! I'm severely lacking in votes right now!

I'm sorry I disappeared and didn't send out reminder PMs or anything... I've been preoccupied by my new desktop since Tuesday, and not for good reasons. I was trying to figure out and fix the downloading problem it was having (long story short, it was the integrated network hardware). Does anyone want the voting period extended to compensate for the lack of temporal awareness on my part?

SoulinEther
06-14-2009, 07:14 AM
So long as you send out the PMs.

HalcyonSpirit
06-15-2009, 10:47 PM
Voting has been extended to June 22nd, 11:59PM. Reminder PMs have been sent out.

HalcyonSpirit
06-22-2009, 03:27 AM
One last day for voting! Don't miss out!




Seriously, vote, please. I've only gotten one more person's vote in the extended time period. This is horrible.

SoulinEther
06-22-2009, 05:35 AM
I will vote. I just got back from stuff, and i'm feeling in the mind for voting.

edit: *puts on sticker*

Edit #2: I'm plugging someone's work but.. you all should definitely check out The Rose General by katethegreat19, the lyrics/poem are/is fairly impressive. Just saying.

HalcyonSpirit
06-23-2009, 05:35 AM
The gloves are off, and

THE RESULTS ARE IN!

1st Place: If Sperm Could Fly Away by SoulinEther
Runner-Up: Paintings by Random Hajile

Here's the vote spread:

If Sperm Could Fly Away by SoulinEther: 10
Paintings by Random Hajile: 7
A Black Soul by DJ-Arthur: 2
Java by Washington Maverick: 2
re...(2) by M W: 1
Untitled Haiku by Native Jovian: 1
You are... by wouldntyouliketoknow: 1


There is quite a... bias toward two of the entries! Wasn't expecting it to be quite so lopsided. I'm not too surprised by who won, though, to be perfectly honest. If Sperm Could Fly was genuinely entertaining, and Random Hajile is one of our best poets (in my opinion, anyway). Still, it was a good showing, even the absolutely odd entry from M W.

Good job, everyone. Remember, the Freeform competition begins in just over a week, so check back then! Expect to see my return to the competition. ;-)


PS: I've gotten a few vote PMs the past couple competitions saying something to the effect of "I forget how this goes, but here's my votes anyway." People, if you forget, the rules are right there in the first post! Take a minute - and it only takes a minute! - to read them before submitting a vote! I don't want to have to invalidate votes because of technicalities.

Random Hajile
06-23-2009, 03:45 PM
Nice :D, thanks for all the votes guys, I've been on vacation and coming back to see this was a surprise :). I wrote that poem for the girl in my poetry group who I fancy :D. I'm glad to see people like it :).

Any critiques would be appreciated :D:D

M W
06-23-2009, 11:36 PM
Nice :D, thanks for all the votes guys, I've been on vacation and coming back to see this was a surprise :). I wrote that poem for the girl in my poetry group who I fancy :D. I'm glad to see people like it :).

Any critiques would be appreciated :D:D

Isn't the fact that you practically won proof enough that you don't need critiques?

Well, not on that one anyway.

Random Hajile
06-24-2009, 02:57 AM
Lol <.< can never hurt to see what people think, can only help me get better :D

I rather liked yours btw :D, It's got the kind of sass I can appreciate in a poem xD

HalcyonSpirit
06-24-2009, 03:17 AM
Isn't the fact that you practically won proof enough that you don't need critiques?

Actually, the fact that both he and SoulinEther placed at the top is proof enough that they need critiques just as much as others, perhaps even moreso. Writers never stop changing. We constantly evolve, adapting our writing techniques and improving ourselves. If no one critiqued a top-writer's work, he/she would never become better. It doesn't matter that they are already at the top, they still need critique. It helps them get better, and it tells them, consciously and subconsciously, that they are not perfect writers and that they need to avoid stagnation of their abilities.

wouldntyouliketoknow
06-24-2009, 07:51 AM
We never got critiqued for the short stories did we... O_o

SoulinEther
06-24-2009, 11:04 AM
ayy fml. i know. i don't know how i sleep at night :( now you understand why i have to create my fantasy world with flying sperm and vaginas that grow on trees because i am a terrible humam being. and lonely. (sympathy card drawn)

edit: oh and... er, i'm flattered. And disgusted, but flattered. i wouldn't mind critique either. and i will dish some critique out i hope this time around, too. even 1 or 2 words that are meaningful - i will try to dole them.

Washington Maverick
06-25-2009, 03:17 AM
We never got critiqued for the short stories did we... O_o

HAH! Critiques used to be the name of the game...my short story win never got so much as single one though. :(

Then again...I haven't been good about critiquing either. Hey kettle, this is pot, you're quite black.:oops:

HalcyonSpirit
07-01-2009, 04:21 PM
Yeah, I'm definitely guilty of not making critiques either. I'm hoping to change that with this round, though. I'd do it for the poetry, but I'm not good at poetry writing or critiquing.

Anyway, the July 2009 Freeform Competition is now OPEN! Write, write, WRITE! *starts writing*

SoulinEther
07-01-2009, 08:44 PM
Can critiques count as a freeform submission? (I actually already have a pretty good idea of what I'm going to do, this is more of a theoretical).

HalcyonSpirit
07-02-2009, 03:54 AM
Yes, they can. Freeform is essentially "if it's writing, it's allowed." So if you really wanted to, critiques of past works could be used as a current submission.

... Which begs the question: can a critique be critiqued? :-P

wouldntyouliketoknow
07-02-2009, 04:34 AM
Yes, they can. Freeform is essentially "if it's writing, it's allowed." So if you really wanted to, critiques of past works could be used as a current submission.

... Which begs the question: can a critique be critiqued? :-P
Sure they can. And that too could be an entry, no? Haha, a never ending loop of critiquing critiques. This could be amusing...

SoulinEther
07-02-2009, 05:43 AM
A critique can be critiqued; essentially you're going to be determining whether or not a person properly analyzed a work. But critiquing critiques is like playing the role of a teacher/professor/student aid in a writing class :/

Loning
07-09-2009, 07:59 AM
Critiques is essentially opinions.
It really boils down to persuasion. As in, who has the best argument, best sources of information, etc.

No one is necessarily right, given this argument for example, a teacher isn't necessarily right. If you look at the academic world, professors are very good at critiquing other professors on papers and research and they are in return critiqued on their response. This actually strengthens papers and builds knowledge.

(and yes, it can be a repetitive cycle)

Zipp
07-09-2009, 08:06 AM
I think I'll throw in a piece this year. How about a review?

Way of the Samurai

I picked up Way of the Samurai many a year ago in one of those impulses that causes you to browse games at Target while you’re momentarily distracted from buying cheap T-shirts with pictures of Bob Ross on them. These impulses occasionally lead to solid gold, more often lead to disappointment, and can on rare occasion result in eternal damnation, like the time I found one of Satan’s toenails at a lazy seaside pawn shop.

In this case, it led to a mediocre video game.

My experience began well enough with character creation which was basically choosing a face, slapping it in a kimono, and naming it. I made a guy with massive sideburns and a pony tail who wore a bright yellow kimono. I called him Menji. I envisioned him as a renegade samurai from a well respected house who had been forced to flee after having a night of sexual freedom with his lord’s daughter. Now, tortured by his shame, he wanders the countryside looking for his own death.

The game proper opened with Menji coming into Rokkutsu pass, a free-roam environment made up of a menagerie of Samurai Western staples including a shrine, a dusty little town, a mountain pass, and a railway crossing. The first scene saw Menji at a small bridge where lo! a young woman was being chased by a group of vicious thugs. After a quick look at the woman’s face, Menji saw she was uglier than a horse’s rear-end and decided to pass across the bridge without helping her. The ruffians knocked her out, their tattooed leader hoisted her over a shoulder, and they prepared to make off.

Things might have ended peacefully there. But then the miscreant had the misfortune of bumping Menji’s arm. And he didn’t apologize. Blades were drawn. The ruffian tossed some tough words Menji”s way. Menji decided to show this country bumpkin the way of the Samurai. Fifteen seconds later, Menji was dead.

Okay, I thought. So the game has a learning curve. I have to admit, though, I was a little perturbed. I had played through the tutorial, after all. I’d kicked the ass of the peasant my sensei sent against me. I knew how to guard and parry and use a couple special moves. So what had gone wrong?

I started up the game again. This time I avoided the bridge encounter altogether and instead went into town. Here I was enjoying a quick meal of rice and sake when some thugs came into the shop and starting busting shit up. I wouldn’t have particularly minded if they hadn’t spilled my sake. As it was, that was an unforgivable slight and blades were once again drawn.

This time I stayed far away from my opponent, studying his moves. I knew my own arsenal of attacks fairly well. I had a thrust, a couple down-swings and side-swings, and a sort've feint that looked more like a dance move than an attack. After watching my opponent shuffle around for a while, I thought I had his pattern down, so I came in from the side with a quick swing, planning to follow it up with a combo that would bring him to his knees.

In response, he blocked, pushed me off balance, slapped me in the face with the butt of his sword, kicked my feet out from under me, and stabbed me in the spine a few times while I lay defenseless on the ground. Now wait a minute, I thought. My most powerful ability is a basic thrust. How the hell do I learn THAT move?

The answer, it turned out, was to claim my opponent’s sword (and thus all his moves). This meant I had to actually defeat someone, though. I eagerly rushed out into the countryside and murdered a peasant. All I got for my efforts was a stupid dull sword with crappy moves. It seemed that I was going to be forced to kill one of the real samurai if I ever wanted a better sword.

So began a long process of Menji getting his ass handed to him, no matter who I fought, whether it was a black samurai with an afro and an Italian name, a giant retard who attacked me with what looked like a street-lamp, or a man with tight red pants and spikes on his arms. It seemed that the only people I could kill were the inexperienced and innocent peasantry minding their business in the pass’ various locales... and then only if they were alone.

You see, combat has all the makings of a simplistic system. There's two attack buttons and one block button. Attacking while blocking leads to a kick. That's not so bad. But none of this is useful. The enemies have the ability to block, too, and they do it all the time. Now, you're SUPPOSED to be able to throw a blocking enemy off balance, but this only works about half the time. And if you fail to make it work, then YOU'RE the one off balance and vulnerable. To make matters worse, enemies often have attacks which instantly break blocks. This leaves you with two options. You can try to dodge, but this requires psychic powers, as attacks are fast and often change direction before striking, so you never know whether to back up or side step. The other option is to hit the block button at the exact moment the attack connects, which is about a window of .05 seconds. The game calls it an "awase." I call it "a chance in a million."

Fortunately, while I had learned nothing about how to fight well using the unintuitive combat system, I HAD learned the fine art of dropping to all fours like a dog and begging for my life, so although I was defeated many times, I never actually died. I just got spit upon by everyone and slowly lost sight of that originally grand character I had envisioned at the start of the game. This was no longer the adventure of Menji: bad-ass samurai, but of Menji: boot licker and petty thief. Which is ironically a fairly accurate depiction of the real samurai era in Japan. I can only assume it wasn’t very much fun living in that period. And it wasn’t turning out to be much fun playing Way of the Samurai, either.

The game does deserve a shout out for its excellent free roaming nature. Every one of your decisions has a profound impact on the plot, and the characters all have little secrets that you can strive to uncover. While in one play-through you might be off helping a lord re-establish his domain, in another you'll be tracking his wife to a secret rendezvous with the local law enforcer. Since events are happening at the same time all over the pass, it takes multiple play-throughs not only to get all the endings, but to even see everything there is to see.

So though Menji had utterly failed to change anything with his blade, I became vastly interested in seeing what he could change through his interactions and alliances, and kept playing.

Fate eventually caught up with the disgruntled samurai, however. During one of his usual muggings, he accidentally attacked someone who was no peasant, but a retainer of one of the local samurai houses. The retainer was quickly joined in battle by three other men, and none of them seemed to show much interest in Menji’s profound apologies for having tried to take their friend’s scalp as a trophy.

Whilst trying to run away and forage for some life recovering radishes, Menji was cut down... in the prime of his career, I might add.

By this point, I had won a few tough combats by luck and random button mashing and had actually gotten hold of some pretty nice blades. I’d even souped them up via the local blacksmith so that they'd last longer in combat without breaking. So I figured the play-through, while maybe a bit of an ego castration, wasn’t all wasted. When I started again, I’d be more powerful from the outset, actually able to use enough moves that I might stand a chance at playing, if not a super samurai, then at least a competent samurai.

But no. Because when you die in Way of the Samurai you lose everything. All of your weapons. All of your moves. And a good two or three hours of your actual life. You can’t save, so it was back to the very beginning with me, with starting inventory and absolutely no future.

I suppose if I had the patience of a Zen master, I could memorize the move sets of all the enemies and learn that split second for each attack when you can dodge it. But that’s not why I had bought Way of the Samurai. I had been attracted by the notion of being Yojimbo or Zatoichi, bringing honor to the countryside with the sharp end of my blade. I assume that’s why most people would be looking to play Way of the Samurai. Be warned, you’ll more likely end up playing the eternal Grasshopper... in a world with a lot of lawnmowers.

Rating: 4/10

Soul Splint
07-16-2009, 03:00 AM
That's an interesting format.
Very good writing. The mark of a good story-teller is varied diction and proper cadence. The mark of a great story-teller is when I have to go back and look for that kind of stuff, because I read the whole post without realizing I was reading it.

And by the way, I don't think I will ever play that game. Ever.

Zipp
07-23-2009, 05:45 AM
That's an interesting format.
Very good writing. The mark of a good story-teller is varied diction and proper cadence. The mark of a great story-teller is when I have to go back and look for that kind of stuff, because I read the whole post without realizing I was reading it.

And by the way, I don't think I will ever play that game. Ever.

Thank you. I can't really recommend WotS, no. Part of me wants to, because it did some very cool things with free-form gaming at a time when no one was really doing that... but no, it's a terrible game.

HalcyonSpirit
07-24-2009, 08:48 PM
I believe this is the point at which I need to say "One week left for submissions!"

I'm still working on my submission, so hopefully the rest of you are too! *hint hint wink wink*

JH Sounds
07-26-2009, 10:23 PM
I'd contribute, but I have a bad case of writer's rash. On my--

wouldntyouliketoknow
07-27-2009, 12:21 AM
Here's my entry. A story that I never bothered to name. Let's call it... Uh... "The Mind's Prison"



“Do you think he’ll ever wake up, doctor?” I asked, looking at the limp body of my friend. He’s been in a coma for several days now. His vital signs are still strong, but he continues to lie on that bed, his eyes perpetually closed.
“I’m sorry Ms. Walters, but it’s up to him now. We’re doing everything we can to keep him alive. He just has to fight.”
“C’mon Isaac… you can pull through. I know you can,” I whispered as I walked away. My eyes were beginning to water again.
~
It’s dark. A single, dim light bulb dangling from the ceiling rocks slightly in the cool draft. I lean against the rough concrete wall, facing the only door to my room. There are no windows, there is no bed, there is no toilet. There is nothing. Occasionally some food is pushed through a small slit in the door. I forever sit, waiting for the footsteps. I see a slight glint of outside light every time the slit opens.
I can’t count the days. I can’t remember how I got here. I can’t even remember who I am. I just sit, hoping that maybe it will all make sense eventually. That thinking will get me somewhere. It’s been an eternity. It hasn’t.
~
I came back the next day, just like I had every day since the accident. Each time, I almost expected to see a different sight; to see Isaac, cheerful as always, sitting in his bed. But I never did. He just kept lying there.
“How is he today, doctor?” I queried. I knew what he was going to say, but I felt the need to ask anyways.
“Same as always… His body is still accepting food through the tubes. Nothing is physically wrong with him. He just needs to wake up. It’s quite curious actually. This is rare. Usually they wake up…” he said, trailing off. I guess he noticed my worried expression. I was beginning to fear that maybe he wouldn’t wake up. That I would never be able to see that little spark in his eyes again. I didn’t accept it though. I simply couldn’t imagine a life without Isaac.
I walked up and sat down in the chair beside his bed, facing him. His chest was moving up and down at a slow tempo. I could hear each breath in the silent room.
“Isaac, I know you can’t hear me, but I want you to know that I believe in you. You need to fight! I don’t know what’s going on inside your head, but you can beat it. I just need you to wake up!” I cried. Getting up, I looked at his face one more time before leaving. A single tear slid down my cheek onto his forehead as I turned around.
~
A drop of water lands on my head. I look up, thinking the roof is leaking, but see everything is normal. There is no crack, no dark spot. I ask myself if I really felt it, but I am positive. Positive or insane. Looking back at the door, I hear muffled noises outside. Voices? I crawl over to listen. Yes. Definitely voices. More figments of my imagination? I do not know. I can’t make out what they’re saying, so I back up into the corner again, huddling into a timid little ball. I close my eyes, waiting for sleep to come.
~
As I drove to the hospital again, I reminisced about the day it happened. We were driving along that very road, though it was much darker before. The sun was just setting, creating a simply immaculate sight in front of us. Perhaps it could be blamed for the accident. Or maybe I could. Isaac wasn’t looking too good, and I still let him drive. Just before we crashed, he was telling me, “I’m fine Claire, don’t worry.” I didn’t even get a second to relax before we t-boned a turning car. The screeching of the tires, the look of horror on their faces… What they say isn’t true. It wasn’t in slow motion. I may have only seen the expressions of the family we hit for a fraction of a second, but I’ll never forget them. Their wide eyes, jaws dropped… They knew they were about to die. No one should have to suffer that feeling.
I walked into the familiar hospital room to an unfamiliar sight. The blinds were drawn, letting in a glorious sight of the city below. Buildings, parks, cars… everything was visible. The sky was clear, the sun glinting in the corner of the window. It was almost uplifting. Almost.
But the thing that caught my attention most was the lack of Isaac. His bed was empty, and the doctor was looking at the clipboard at the foot of it.
“Where’s Isaac?” I demanded.
“I’m sorry Ms. Walters, but I’m afraid you won’t be able to visit Mr. Temple today. We’re scanning his brain activity in hopes of gleaming a better understanding of what’s going on inside his head,” he explained.
I sighed. Unfair as it was, it was necessary. I left the hospital disappointed.
~
I open my eyes, realizing that something is not right. The room has a strange feel about it, as if the walls are vibrating. Looking closely, I find my senses wrong yet again. There is a knock on the door. I slowly crawl to my feet, my eyes never straying from it. The tap comes again. It is louder this time. I walk to the door, peeking through the slot where food comes, trying to catch a glimpse of my visitor. I see nothing but flickering shadows. The rapping begins for a third time, but it does not stop. Progressively getting louder, it begins to sound more and more hostile. The door begins to shake, as if someone were on the other side attempting to force their way in. I crawl back into the corner, sitting feebly with my knees against my chest, arms wrapped around them. I continue to stare at the rattling door, waiting for it to stop. Eventually, the noise ceases and I am once again left in silence. Cruel, dead, silence.
~
Another day, another visit. I was allowed to see him that time. Nothing had changed though. I once again asked the doctor about Isaac’s condition.
“The brain scan reveals that he is continuously dreaming. Occasionally, he’ll sleep normally, without dreams. We found that these periods were all at specific times, almost as if he were going to sleep in his dream,” he replied.
“Is it possible that he thinks he’s awake, and is sleeping normally?” I thought out loud.
He tilted his head to the side with a twinkle of curiosity in his eye. “It’s a possibility, I suppose… but then again, what isn’t in this case? This is the strangest patient I’ve ever worked on.”
I smiled for a second, thinking of the many memories I treasured of Isaac. He certainly was a strange one alright…
“Ah well, we have to run more tests. You’ll have to leave now, Ms. Walters,” he said.
I nodded, turning and heading for the door. He put his hand on my shoulder for a second. Turning around, we locked eyes. “Don’t worry. He’s showing slight signs of improvement. He’ll pull through Ms. Walters. He just needs time,” consoled the doctor.
~
The room is quivering again. I turn my head to the door again, waiting for the pounding to begin. It doesn’t. Looking at the walls again, I realize that they really are shaking. Cracks begin to form, and bits of dust powder the floor. I scramble to the wall, feeling the fracture. I feel a slight difference in temperature. The air outside my dank prison is warmer, almost welcoming. I press my eye against it, peeking through the hairline slit. I see only a faint shimmer of light.
More voices. I can hear them slightly better through the crack, but still can’t distinguish what they’re saying. It angers me. Why is this happening? Why me? What did I do to deserve this? I punch the wall in my frustration. More dust floats to the ground. A smile graces my complexion. I don’t know why I’m here, but I just might be able to escape.
~
When I next visited Isaac, the doctor greeted me with a cheerful grin. “I have wonderful news, Ms. Walters!” he exclaimed as I strolled in.
“Is he awake!?” I asked hopefully.
“Well, the news isn’t that great, but he is showing signs of waking up. I think he’s finally beginning to fight back! Yesterday, I saw his eyes crack open a bit. He was, unfortunately, still unconscious.”
I sighed. It certainly was a good sign, but Isaac wasn’t back. Not yet. I gazed at his peaceful body, and then left, beaming the whole time. There was still hope.
~
My hands are sore. I look at my reddened knuckles, and kick the crack. It is slowly spreading around the wall. I kick it again, and again. Just a little bit more, I can feel it! I back up to the other side of the cell, and run towards the wall and jump, leg extended. I hear a loud crunch as I crash into the wall. Little pieces crumble to the floor. I do it again. More falls apart. I smirk. “One more time,” I pant. I run full force at it, and smash into the now fragile wall. I hear one last snap, as it all gives way. Light fills the room, and I shield my eyes, blinking rapidly.
I can finally make out the voices. “Doctor! Doctor! He’s awake!” says one. I stir. What do they mean awake? I was already awake…
I hear a clamber of footsteps, followed by a different voice. “Welcome back Mr. Temple. We were getting worried there.”
~
It was late that night when the hospital called me. They requested I come in as quickly as I could, saying it was urgent. I feared the worst as I sped down the road. It was dark, with little traffic to hinder my pace. I ran to his room, my eyes beginning to water. As I burst in, everyone looked towards me. The nurses, the doctor… and a confused Isaac. He looked at me with an expression of wonder, as if he wasn’t sure who I was.
“Ah, there you are Ms. Walters. As I’m sure you’ve noticed, he’s woken up! He finally broke through about an hour ago,” explained the doctor.
I walked towards my friend, slowly, asking myself if I was dreaming, if it was really true. When he was close enough, I wrapped my arms around him and started crying. “Isaac… I was so scared… so afraid of losing you…” I managed to sob.
“That’s… good to hear,” he said, then paused. “I know this probably sounds really weird, and I ask that you don’t take it personally but… Who are you?”
I pulled away, staring blankly into his eyes. They had an apologetic look to them. He really didn’t remember who I was.
“I was about to warn you about that… See, staying in a coma that long is not without its consequences to the head. I’m afraid to say that he’s lost his memory. He doesn’t recall what happened, why he’s here, who his family is… He doesn’t even remember his name,” sighed the doctor.
I opened my mouth in awe, still looking into Isaac’s blank eyes. I was left speechless for a moment. “Will… will he ever remember?”
The doctor shrugged. “I’m sorry Ms. Walters, but it all depends on the person. Some people remember everything, others recall fragments and the rest… the rest don’t regain any of their memories. He seems to be a very… unique case, so I have no means of predicting how things will work out for him. I’m sorry.”
I sighed again. Looking back at Isaac, I locked eyes with him once more. I noticed the familiar glint I had feared I would never see again, and then realized that it didn’t matter that his memory was gone. I smiled, extending my hand towards Isaac. “Well, you might not remember Isaac, but I’m Claire Walters. We used to be best friends. Even if you don’t have the same memories of us as I do, that just means we’ll have to create new ones!”
He grinned back, shaking my hand. “Well Claire, it’s a pleasure to meet you. Again.”

HalcyonSpirit
07-31-2009, 02:26 AM
One day left for submissions!

I'm working on my entry. I would've had it done by now, but I switched to a completely different story about halfway through writing. I just couldn't get the first one to be interesting...

TheHands
07-31-2009, 05:18 AM
7 lbs.

Backpack.
9x14 cm Moleskine notebook.
Coraline by Neil Gaiman.
Two-thirds roll of silver 3M duct tape.
0.5 fl oz Purell hand sanitizer.
Black Nintendo Dsi, blue canvas case.
Clubhouse Games, Chrono Trigger, MarioKart DS, The World Ends with You.
Half-empty .5 liter Poland Spring bottle.
1 pair XL boot socks.
Old photograph, faces scratched out.
3 Magnum brand condoms.
1 pair disposable bamboo chopsticks.
2 AAA batteries.
.5 watt LED flashlight.
1G Flash drive, photo/video evidence.
Deck of Magic: The Gathering cards, green box.
Deck of plastic Bicycle playing cards.
12x20 in hand towel.
Wilted flower petal.
Heavy weight drum sticks, brand rubbed clean.
Keys.
Gloves.

Hope I'm in on time.

M W
07-31-2009, 06:51 AM
I regret not being able to contest this round. I've been working on something pretty big and it left no time for working on something small for this contest.

I'll still vote. Don't you worry.

SoulinEther
07-31-2009, 04:10 PM
meh.

.rogerG

Lying quiet on my bed
Sadly wishing I were dead
My father asking me instead
Clean the blood where he had bled

Lying quiet on their bed
Told him I wish to be dead
He repeated what I had said
When he left I shaved my head

It's not that I don't seem to care
It's not that I don't like long hair
It's not like telling black from white
It's not like trying to be right

For in this life we cannot win
Forging dreams in old cans of tin
No one can escape the sin
Walking into the devil's grin

Bagging up my old brown nest
Feeling light like I could jest
I went downstairs to see the rest
How this change did them infest

Father had put down his gun
Aimed directly at his son
My mother's tears how did they run
Her life had ended as mine begun

How am I blind to all but me
How could I act so selfishly
What we do we cannot undo
Just one misstep and then you're through

It's not that I don't seem to care
It's not that I want your despair
All our needs cannot compare
And my one change is now unfair

For in this life we cannot win
Forging dreams in old cans of tin
No one can escape the sin
Walking into the devil's grin

No, in this life we'll never win
Shooting dreams in old cans of tin
Walking straight into the sin
Walking into the devil's grin

HalcyonSpirit
08-01-2009, 02:17 AM
My entry. Finally finished after falling asleep for half the day. Oops... It didn't come out quite as well as I had hoped, and of course I couldn't come up with a good title, but whatever. Enjoy!


The Unknown

DefenTec Corp. Database System
“Genesis” Terminal Interface RA-8.2.9
Copyright (C) 3087 DefenTec Corporation

Connecting to central database.................
Connection established.

Login: *********
Passkey: *********************

Accessing..........
Access granted.

>>/fleet/Sansun/log/personal/K.Udan

UEF Sansun Personal Log
Kathryn Udan, Chief Medical Officer
531 Entries, 04-12-3095 to 11-07-3098
Partial data corruption detected.

>>show -r -8 -ae

Displaying last 8 files. Audio enabled.


Entry Number 524, 11-02-3098
“The monthly health evaluation is finally over. Thank god. Barring a few irregularities, it's always the same thing every month. A few are always sick with a stomach flu, and the rest are generally in good shape. Physically, anyway. Over three years alone in deep space takes its toll on the human mind. I can't deny feeling the effects myself, but some of the crew, well, if this tour doesn't end soon, they'll crack. I'm already seeing it start in some. Ensign Lee is showing signs of depression, and Lieutenant Rodham is getting a little... paranoid. Several others have varying symptoms of cabin fever. I prescribed the appropriate medications, of course, but drugs can only do so much. I'm one of the lucky few on this boat that has an outlet. I was sure to give my husband some extended treatment when he came in for his checkup.”

Entry Number 525, 11-03-3098
“Today's little practice drill took everyone by surprise. Even some of the officers were caught off-guard by it. That's really odd, since the captain usually wants them to carefully watch for any men being sloppy. Kevin didn't even know it was a practice run until after it was all over. Captain Reynolds isn't saying why he called for it. Hell, he hasn't even left the bridge since it ended. It's got everyone a little concerned that it wasn't actually a drill at all, but none of the men on watch at the time saw anything. At least, that's what they're saying. I don't know. I have a feeling I'll be seeing more of the men in my office soon due to stress-related symptoms. I better make sure I have enough meds to last until the next supply ship is due to arrive.”

Entry Number 526, 11-03-3098
“It's barely been fourteen hours and we've already had another order to high alert. Now everyone knows the first time wasn't just a drill. Everyone's a little fuzzy on the details, but this time apparently there was an unknown ship spotted approximately one hundred kilometers from our position. The officer that spotted it didn't recognize it. There's speculation that the Perseus Alliance has a new ship model we haven't been informed about by Command. I really don't care what it is as long as it doesn't start bothering us. This is a recon vessel, there's no way we'd survive even a mild encounter with the PA. We're too far out to expect any help from the fleet if things turn sour here. Deep space is supposed to be lonely. It was lonely until now. Now we're on edge because of a sighting of something that no one is able to identify. Everyone's on edge. I haven't been able to find Kevin since the alert went out again. I want him to hold me, but he's probably busy managing the situation. Our personal life can't get in the way of our duties. I know I wished for a little more to do around here, but th... Great, what now? Right, I'm on my way.”

Entry Number 527, 11-04-3098
“I know I'm supposed to stay professional when dealing with any of the crew. I'm a doctor, I saw the signs, I should've known this could happen. But... but... Oh god. Oh god. I couldn't do anything. I froze. I just stood there. There was so much blood... so much blood. And his eyes... he already knew. He just looked at me... like he was trying to say something reassuring but couldn't find his voice. And then... oh god. He's gone. He's gone. I didn't even get to say goodbye. I can't let myself cry, he wouldn't want... why? Why'd you have to be the one to die? Kevin...”

Entry Number 528, 11-04-3098
“Two more. Two more dead. After... after Kevin... after Lieutenant Udan died, the entire ship was put on lockdown. Everyone was confined to their quarters while the captain made the rounds, interrogating every single one of them. And yet, somehow, two more were killed in their quarters. Some of the crew were saying the first death was suicide, but I hope they've been shut up now. I don't know they could've been murdered from inside their own rooms. Everyone's been separated. Only the captain is free to move around the ship... he couldn't have done it, right? He couldn't, he wouldn't... I've seen the bodies, the injuries. It's one person, whoever it is. The wound is the same on each. A single, precise stab wound into the carotid artery surrounded with very slight burns around the wound. There's a killer on the ship. A Perseus assassin? I can't imagine any of the crew doing this. I mean, sure, they were showing signs of cracking, but still... none of them seemed far enough along to even start a fight! And how he getting around? How come no one noticed anything was wrong until... Udan was murdered? Why did he have to die?!”

Entry Number 529, 11-06-3098
“Something's happened. No one knows who's responsible for the deaths, but the captain doesn't seem to care anymore. The entire crew is at battle ready and we're making for Federation territory. The captain was in here an hour ago. He was... I don't want to say afraid, but uncertainty doesn't describe what I saw in him. I'm not supposed to know this, but the unknown ship they spotted a few days ago reappeared much, much closer this time. Out of nowhere. Whatever it was, it disappeared again while our guns were trying to get a lock on it. Spooked the hell out of the crew, apparently. Captain says it didn't look like any ship made by either the Alliance or Federation. I never saw it. I don't want to see it. We're a month away from Federation space... I hope it never comes back.”

Entry Number 530, 11-07-3098
“I shouldn't be talking about this, but the captain brought some sort of knife to me early this morning. One of the crew found it in the engine room. It's nothing like I've ever seen before. It doesn't have a physical blade. Somehow it just... generates one. Out of energy. I thought that was the stuff of science fiction, but here it is, in my lab... and it matches perfectly with the stab wounds on the murdered crew members. … I'm afraid. There's someone, or something, one the ship. Captain's ordered a full search of every millimeter of the ship. We don't know what's here, but he hasn't said anything about the knife itself to the crew. I think he wants to keep the crew from getting panicky. Too bad almost everyone is getting there anyway. I'm not sure how much longer I can hold out.”

Entry Number 531, 11-07-3098
“Oh god, oh god... Okay... this... this is Doctor Kathryn Udan of the United Earth Federation reconnaissance vessel Sansun. Our ship has come under attack by a ship of unknown origin. They appeared out of nowhere and hit us before we could strike back. I don't know how, but they're on the ship! They're killing everyone! I saw them, they're not human! They're monsters! Most of the men are already dead! I'm the only one left on the bridge and they're heading this way! When I end this transmission the ship and crew logs will be sent on all channels to whoever's listening. Please, don't ignore this! These aliens are real! The... oh god, they're at the door! They're almost through! Please, I don't want to die! No, no don't! AAAAAA”


Playback ended.

>>erase -o “/fleet/Sansun”

WARNING
Data recovery will not be possible when using Overwrite option. Continue[Y/N]: Y

Erasing.........
Complete.
Overwriting.......................
Complete.

>>exit -nl

Passkey: *********************

Disconnected from central database. Database access log not updated.

HalcyonSpirit
08-01-2009, 02:28 AM
That's it! Submission stage is over! We've got five entries this round. Voting begins now, and ends when the clock hits 23:59pm UTC 14 August, 2009. I'll be sending out reminders as soon as I get my computer back up and running so I can access the list of people I need to send PMs to...

Current Submissions
for the July 2009 Freeform Competition:

Way of the Samurai by Zipp (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=565003&postcount=186)
The Mind's Prison by wouldntyouliketoknow (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=572067&postcount=191)
7 lbs. by TheHands (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=573966&postcount=193)
.rogerG by SoulinEther (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=574112&postcount=195)
The Unknown by HalcyonSpirit (http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=574308&postcount=196)


Good luck, everyone!

SoulinEther
08-01-2009, 03:11 AM
Engineers use UTC time but they may have difficulties doing that counting thing.. :lol:

(edit: yeah i'm still bitter! lol)

wouldntyouliketoknow
08-01-2009, 03:27 AM
Yay for last minute entries =D

They were all great too. This'll be a tough decision...

HalcyonSpirit
08-01-2009, 04:50 AM
Engineers use UTC time but they may have difficulties doing that counting thing.. :lol:

(edit: yeah i'm still bitter! lol)

I do believe your accusations are baseless!

And bitter about what? I don't get it... :???:

SoulinEther
08-01-2009, 05:53 AM
Bitter? When I discovered (to my chagrin) that the competition had switched to using UTC when I wanted to submit something on the last day.

Burnt toast. Flaming marshmallow. UTC time. Yeah. Bitter.

HalcyonSpirit
08-01-2009, 06:21 AM
You know, if you had mentioned that at the time, I would've allowed a little leeway for you to finish up in time. I'm not so strict about times that I'll cut off at the specified time no matter what; whenever I get to the computer after the time given I may end it, or decide I'm too tired and wait until the next morning, or...

You get the picture. I just use UTC because it's the universal standard. It's not like everyone here is AN AMERICAN. FROM AMERICA. :-P

SoulinEther
08-01-2009, 06:42 AM
No, the entire world is from sunny, beautiful California. This I'm sure of, and you can't take that away from me!

Zipp
08-02-2009, 05:44 PM
Fellow submitters, I'm honored to be competing with you. I especially like 7 lbs. Very good.

HalcyonSpirit
08-14-2009, 06:08 PM
My lack of computer is really screwing up this voting round. I never got a chance to sent out reminder PMs because my computer, despite getting it's new motherboard, still doesn't work! So I'm extending the voting period until... well, until further notice.

I've gotten only a single vote in so far, but I can't complain too much due to the computer failure situation. Still, I was hoping for better despite it. Get moving!

HalcyonSpirit
08-31-2009, 01:52 AM
So how come it's going on the 31st and I still only have one vote?! I mean, seriously, I know I haven't been able to send out reminder PMs this round but you shouldn't have to rely on them to remember to vote!

The next round (Short Story) WILL start on schedule! The July round voting will remain open until I've got enough votes to call it, so get cracking already! Jeez...

Straziante
08-31-2009, 08:37 PM
Ah found the thread. I'll be sure to participate in the next round if I can!

Neblix
09-01-2009, 02:54 AM
Ah found the thread. I'll be sure to participate in the next round if I can!

I as well look forward to next round. I just hope it's not poetry, I'd love to share a story I've been formulating in my head.

HalcyonSpirit
09-01-2009, 05:03 AM
Good to have you aboard, Straziante and neblixsaber! I'm looking forward to seeing what you can do!

It's past 00:00 UTC, so we're now into the

SEPTEMBER 2009 SHORT STORY COMPETITION!

In addition, as already announced, the voting period for the July competition is STILL OPEN! So if you're going to participate in the Short Story competition in any way, and even if you're not, I strongly urge you to take a few minutes to vote on the July competition as soon as possible!

Get crackin', because I sure am!

Straziante
09-01-2009, 08:07 AM
Paradiso on GoogleDocs (http://docs.google.com/Doc?docid=0AUnyGCPpI_P3ZGQ1NmNiM2ZfMGNqbW4zM2R2&hl=en).
Paradiso on DeviantArt (http://straziante.deviantart.com/art/In-Paradiso-135499132).

The DeviantArt is a little easier to read in my opinion.


It's a pretty gritty piece. It involves themes that may be uncomfortable for some people to read. Kinda had a Law and Order SVU-ish nightmare which inspired this one.

SoulinEther
09-01-2009, 08:13 AM
ok i promise - tomorrow i'll vote. damn this whole higher education system.

frumpiemonkey
09-01-2009, 09:25 AM
hey whoop, This is kind of cool

Straziante
09-01-2009, 07:54 PM
Ugh. I keep sitting down to read July's stuff and something comes up :(

Neblix
09-02-2009, 02:59 AM
What's the average word count for short story submissions?

I'll just get as close to 2500 as possible. I've 1800 words already, but I have to detail a whole fight scene. T.T

Straziante
09-02-2009, 07:20 AM
What's the average word count for short story submissions?

I'll just get as close to 2500 as possible. I've 1800 words already, but I have to detail a whole fight scene. T.T

Don't sweat the word count. Just write what you need to write. If you go over, you can go back and trim back some of the least important details without compromising the story as a whole. If you try to write something such as an important fight with a limit in mind, you're really only stifling the creative process.

Just let 'er rip and go from there.

Neblix
09-02-2009, 04:05 PM
Don't sweat the word count. Just write what you need to write. If you go over, you can go back and trim back some of the least important details without compromising the story as a whole. If you try to write something such as an important fight with a limit in mind, you're really only stifling the creative process.

Just let 'er rip and go from there.

Got it. When are submissions due?

HalcyonSpirit
09-02-2009, 05:42 PM
All necessary information is in the first post. For the record, submissions are due by the end of the month at 23:59 UTC.

Also, Straziante (and really anyone else, as a reminder), we have a rule about submissions: stories need to be written within the submission period. Now, perhaps you did write your submission in the few hours after the start. I know there's some people that could do that, so I don't discount the possibility. If you don't say anything, I can't really do anything since there's no way for me to know when you wrote it. But if you didn't write it during those few hours, I do ask that you do the right thing and write a different story for submission.

Everyone, remember, we rely on people to honor the rules here, since it's somewhat hard to enforce certain rules except in extreme cases. Please don't abuse this trust. :smile:

Neblix
09-02-2009, 06:26 PM
All necessary information is in the first post. For the record, submissions are due by the end of the month at 23:59 UTC.

Also, Straziante (and really anyone else, as a reminder), we have a rule about submissions: stories need to be written within the submission period. Now, perhaps you did write your submission in the few hours after the start. I know there's some people that could do that, so I don't discount the possibility. If you don't say anything, I can't really do anything since there's no way for me to know when you wrote it. But if you didn't write it during those few hours, I do ask that you do the right thing and write a different story for submission.

Everyone, remember, we rely on people to honor the rules here, since it's somewhat hard to enforce certain rules except in extreme cases. Please don't abuse this trust. :smile:


I hope I'm not breaking the rules :/ I started writing as soon as you said the September 2009 Short Story contest started.

Straziante
09-02-2009, 07:01 PM
My short stories are usually written pretty fast. I started writing as soon as I saw it was short story month. Took me about an hour and a half to write then I spent another hour tweaking.

Most of my writing occurs during short periods of time, usually in one sitting. If you would like me submit something new for argument's sake, I'm sure I could whip something up.

Neblix
09-02-2009, 07:27 PM
Uuuhh... we have a problem here. In Microsoft word, my story is registered at 2500 complete words. When I put on fiction press, it's 2618 words. T.T

Neblix
09-02-2009, 07:29 PM
My short stories are usually written pretty fast. I started writing as soon as I saw it was short story month. Took me about an hour and a half to write then I spent another hour tweaking.

Most of my writing occurs during short periods of time, usually in one sitting. If you would like me submit something new for argument's sake, I'm sure I could whip something up.

I'm pretty sure there's no problem with writing that so fast, I think he meant you can't submit something that you were already writing before he said contest started.

http://www.fictionpress.com/s/2716509/1/Aura_Weapon

HalcyonSpirit
09-02-2009, 11:15 PM
Yeah, more or less. Really, if you've been around long enough, you know that a contest starts every other month and that it follows the "Freeform->Short Story->Poetry" rotation. So as soon as a competition month starts, you're free to begin writing. No need to wait for me to formally announce it.

Straziante, you're in the clear, don't worry. I'm quite jealous that you can write so quickly. I normally can only write a few paragraphs at a time.

You're ok too, neblixsaber. The word count is a little flexible, but I just checked and you're under the limit anyway.

Straziante
09-03-2009, 01:12 AM
I'm jealous of people that can be patient and consistently write good literature. My writing is streaky and sporadic at best.

Neblix
09-03-2009, 01:38 AM
I'm jealous of people that can be patient and consistently write good literature. My writing is streaky and sporadic at best.

My writing is streaky and sporadic, but also in very frequent spurts...

excpet that I usually lazy so I never write often anyway. But I can tell you I could write more and more 24/7, if not for needing sleep, video games, music, school, and food. And of course, getting bored.

I never got around to writing the next chapter to my Sonic fanfic. BTW, if you guys wanna read that just PM me.

Neblix
09-03-2009, 01:42 AM
You're ok too, neblixsaber. The word count is a little flexible, but I just checked and you're under the limit anyway.

I would've brainwashed you to read it anyways.

Oh, and call me Nabeel. or Neblix.

Jam Stunna
09-03-2009, 03:07 PM
I might try to write something for this month.

Neblix
09-03-2009, 11:16 PM
I might try to write something for this month.

Don't bother cuz I'll win. :tomatoface:

Haha just joking you should try to write something. It's fun!

Jam Stunna
09-06-2009, 07:10 PM
All right, I wrote this story a few months ago. I know that's against the rules, but I wrote it and did nothing with it, and I want to get some mileage out of it. If you want to disqualify it, that's fine.

Luck
By Jamil Ragland

493,394. Brian repeated the number I his head, breaking it down and adding its parts together to form a new whole. Something with a nice ring to it. He grabbed the receipt from his purchase of a burger and fries and scribbled the number on the back. 493,394. A palindrome. He couldn’t remember where he’d seen it, but it had seized his imagination. Big and symmetrical, perfect for mining lottery numbers. He added the three and the four together. Seven, July, the month Anna was born in, three months before her due date. He examined the numbers he’d formed out of the original. They didn’t have that intangible something he was looking for, but he knew he would coax it out eventually.

“Are you ready to go?” Charlotte asked, walking up beside him. Anna was strapped to her chest in the black carrier that Charlotte’s mother bought for them. I’ll be surprised if I ever see Brian wearing this, she’d remarked at the baby shower.

“Yeah. Yeah, I’m ready,” he said, his eyes still fixed on the receipt. He jammed it into his pocket and took Charlotte’s hand. “Let’s go.” The mall was empty, save for a few bands of preteens that rumbled by. It was Tuesday, a predictably slow night. Charlotte needed invitations, and she didn’t want to contend with college boys looking for conquests and old people complaining that things were cheaper and better quality in their day.

“Wanna try the Hallmark store?” Brian asked.

“That’s upstairs. CVS is right here. They sell invitations too.”

“But Hallmark has better stuff.”

“Brian, I just want to get these invitations and go home. Anna needs her bath.”

“I don’t know why you brought her with us anyway,” he muttered.

“Because I don’t want to bother my mother to watch her, okay? She baby-sits her all day while we’re at work. She doesn’t need us to take her evenings away too.”

“Okay, you’re right, sorry,” Brian raised his hands defensively. His eyes dragged across the Hallmark store to the mall’s package store next door. Even the supposedly upscale whine sellers had lottery machines. Gambling and alcohol were eternally linked.

Charlotte was holding a handful of envelopes, mixing and matching them with three sets of invitations she couldn’t choose between. Anna was sleeping. In the stillness of the store, Brian could hear her breath whistling through her little nose. She was wearing a pink jump suit with matching cap, mittens and booties. She didn’t need a jacket in the unseasonably warm December they were having. The good weather was welcomed by Brian. It meant they didn’t have to be hunkered down in the house, and he could keep showing Anna the world she’d been missing in the hospital.

“Which one?” Charlotte asked, fanning out the three invitations in one hand and four different envelopes in the other.

“The one with the snowman on the front. And the red envelopes.”

“That’s kind of plain. I like the blue envelopes.”

“It’s a Christmas party. Green and red are the colors of the season,” he said.

“What do you think, Anna?” she asked. Anna’s scrunched up expression relaxed a little.

“See, she agrees with me,” he said. Charlotte relented, taking the cards and envelopes Brian chose to the counter. He gasped at the price on the register.

“Sixteen dollars won’t kill us,” she scolded him. “Besides, you chose them.”

Anna was still sleeping after they’d strapped her into her car seat. Brian kept the radio low, even though he knew nothing short of hunger could wake her. Charlotte was staring out of her window. Her obsessive compulsive disorder compelled her to count the streetlights as they passed. He could see her eyes lock on each pole as the orange light spilled into the car.

“How many so far?”

“Forty nine.”

The number rushed back into Brian’s mind. 493,394. It was no coincidence that Charlotte’s number had reminded him of his. Brian didn’t believe in coincidences. He glanced at the dashboard clock. 8:48. They wouldn’t reach home fast enough for him to play at his favorite spot, the gas station nearby. Screw it, the numbers are the same no matter where I play, he thought. “I’m getting off at this next exit.”

“For what?” Charlotte asked in the darkness between street lights.

Brian hesitated. “I need something.”

“I bet you do.”

He hated when she said that. It was the phrase she used to dismiss him, and she’d mastered the sarcastic delivery of it. She only used it when he spoke about playing the lottery. If we hit this, we’ll be cruising baby, he’d say. I bet we will. This is the number, I can feel it. I bet it is. Their lack of money was an ironic joke they made to each other before Anna was born. Now, it seeped into their conversations, their lovemaking. Anna had a twin named debt, and it grew faster than she did.

“This is the one, Charlotte. I know I’ve said that before. You gotta believe me, just this one more time.”

She sighed. “You’re making me lose count.”

“But baby-“

“Don’t ‘baby’ me! I’m sick of it!” she yelled suddenly. “We live in my mother’s house, your daughter sleeps in the same crib I did when I was a baby, and you’re building castles in your mind with imaginary money. When I ask you what we’re going to do, how we’re going to make it, and you say, ‘Don’t worry’, is this your plan? Is it?”

“What about you?” Brian snapped. “You’re always *****ing about how poor we are, how we rely on your family for everything, and then you go and spend twenty ****ing dollars on invitations. And one dollar for the lottery is too much? It’s your mother’s god**** party, let her buy this ****!”

Charlotte laughed. “So it’s my fault, right? It’s always my fault. It’s not that your ideas are stupid. It’s not that you need to be a ****ing man and take care of your family. No, I spend too much money. Okay, fine. When you move us into our own place, I’ll take what you have to say seriously.”

Brian was quiet. Their arguments always ended the same way, with Charlotte shaming him into silence. He could feel his stomach knotting up into a hot ball of embarrassment. He wanted to shut her up, more than anything. Paying their bills was second to seeing the stunned look on her face when he presented that winning ticket to her. He wouldn’t have to work the register at Stop and Shop ever again. He wouldn’t have to kowtow to Charlotte’s mother anymore. He would tell them all to go to hell, and he and Anna would go anywhere. Charlotte could come if she wanted. He really didn’t care.

“I won’t go to the store then,” he said, merging back into the center lane of the highway. “You don’t like what I’m doing? You figure something out then. This whole thing, you can figure out how to fix it.”

Charlotte spun in her seat towards him. “What whole thing? This family? Our daughter? God, you’re such a ****ing child. You want money without the work. You wanted us to have sex, and now you can’t handle the consequences. No responsibility. None.”

“Like I said, you figure it out,” Brian repeated. The rest of the ride was silent, except for the faint whistling of Anna’s breath.

* * *


“Mmf, what time is it?”

“3:30.”

“Is that Anna crying?”

“Who else would it be?”

“Who’s turn is it to get up?”

“Yours.”

Brian stumbled around the darkened room to Anna’s bassinet. Her eyes, elongated ovals like her mother’s, were shut, but her hands were clenched into tight balls as she cried. She was hungry. Brian sighed. He’d read in one of Charlotte’s baby books that Anna should be sleeping through the night by now. He had to constantly remind himself that although Anna was five months old, she only had the physical development of a baby half her age.

He took her to the kitchen, finding the extra breast milk in the back of the refrigerator. Anna was awake now, screaming as the milk warmed in the microwave. After her bottle, her cries were quieter but just as constant. It was going to be one of those nights where she cried straight through to her next feeding, three hours away. He hoped that Anna didn’t awaken Charlotte’s mother. He could deal with the baby, but not with Charlotte’s mother being “helpful” by telling him that everything he did with his daughter was wrong.

Brian dressed himself and Anna and walked out to the garage. He’d decided to take Anna for a ride, to spare the rest of the house and to test if cars really put children to sleep. By the time he reached the stop sign at the end of the road, she was quiet. When he pulled onto Main Street, he glanced back to find her asleep. He laughed a little, not too surprised that it worked. He drove aimlessly, pleased at how serene it was to be in a car in the early morning hours. And without Charlotte in the passenger seat.

He’d wanted to hurt her earlier in the car. Not physically. He just wanted her to feel something other than contempt for him, to feel what it was like to constantly be second-guessed and doubted. Anna had been a mistake; a beautiful mistake that Brian loved. But she was Charlotte’s mistake, and she tried to pin it on him every chance she got. Brian knew better. He remembered the day that they’d found out she was pregnant. He’d only bought the test to shut her up. After it came back positive, he berated her for hours, accusing her of missing pills, theorizing that her OCD medication had messed with her hormones. By the time they went to sleep, she was in tears and he was hoarse. He regretted that night for months

He regretted it so much that he kept his allegations to himself when Anna was born in July instead of October. Charlotte had done something wrong again, he just knew it. She hadn’t taken her prenatal vitamins everyday. She shouldn’t have kept working. They owed thousands of dollars in medical bills and were essentially homeless because of her, yet she expected the moon and the stars from Brian. He could feel the anger from earlier in the evening returning. It was exhausting him.

The orange glow of a 7-11 sign caught his eye as he turned to go home. 493,394. The number was still in head, the hope. He pulled into the parking lot, past a gas tanker making a delivery. He looked into the back seat. Anna was still sleeping.

“Daddy will be right back.”

Inside the store, a television blared infomercials. A large man with blue eyes and a red baseball cap was standing in front of the lottery machine. The cashier stood behind the register, waiting for the man to make his selection.

“Can I get a play three, 1-2-9, one dollar backup. Play four, 1-2-0-9, one dollar backup,” the man said.

“Looking to retire early from trucking?” Brian asked, grabbing a sheet to fill out his numbers.

“Nah, just playing the daily numbers. I always play around my birthday. Lookin’ for some extra spendin’ money when I go to the casino with the fellas.”

“Happy birthday. Think you’ll win anything?”

The trucker shrugged. “I don’t know. It’s easier to say ‘maybe’, and leave it at that.”

Brian stared at the lottery sheet in front of him. His number morphed into six individual ones. His hand slid across the sheet, bubbling them in. This was it. The chance to fix everything. To prove Charlotte wrong.

“Good luck, pal,” the trucker said, slamming his large hand down on Brian’s shoulder as he walked out. Brian took one last look at his sheet. It felt good, felt right. The wait would be agonizing until that evening, when the drawing would happen. But the wait will be worth it, he assured himself as he handed the cashier his sheet.

As he left the store, he braced himself against the wave of negative thoughts that washed over him every time he played the lottery. More money wasted. Charlotte is right, this is stupid. She was right about everything, everything. She didn’t want to stop using condoms. She told me she wasn’t feeling well back in May. I am a failure, less than a man, less than my daughter deserves. Guilt swelled in his chest when he remembered that he’d told her they were more likely to hit the lottery than she was to get pregnant. He still loved her, no matter how much he’d grown to dislike her over the last year. The truth was, how could he like a woman that put up with a man like him?

It was 4:11 when they pulled back into the driveway. He crept upstairs with Anna and put her back in the bassinet. She would be awake again soon, but he needed those precious minutes of sleep. Charlotte was sprawled out across the bed, her arms on his pillow.

“Where have you been?” she asked without opening her eyes.

Brian sighed. “Nowhere.”

Neblix
09-06-2009, 11:06 PM
There's not really much of anything that happens...

It feels like it's just a regular every day thing.

HalcyonSpirit
09-09-2009, 10:59 PM
*eye twitch*

Jaaaaaaaaam... are you trying to make things harder for me? Seriously! Damnit... the letter of the law does say that we're only supposed to write within the competition's submission stage in order to qualify, but the spirit of it is practically that if you wrote it in a single month and didn't touch it since, it wouldn't be giving you an unfair advantage (which is why the rule was put in place). The problem with following the spirit is, obviously, there's no way of knowing when you wrote it and when you stopped modifying it. I prefer following the spirit of the rules, but in this case it's just too prone to abuse.

Unless a majority of submitting authors object, I will have to disqualify it, Jam (You can write something else, though! Please do, I enjoy your pieces!). However, I am making it a priority for myself to review it in earnest, so you will be getting some mileage out of it regardless. You can probably expect it around a week after this submission stage ends, though I make no promises about this deadline; I happen to love the whooshing sound deadlines make when soaring past. :-P


Oh, and for future reference, please try to refrain from commenting on submissions until the voting period for the competition is over! Jam's piece is obviously exempt since it can't qualify for submission, but seeing Neblix's comment made me realize that this particular guideline (not rule, guideline) hasn't been mentioned recently.

Neblix
09-10-2009, 01:05 AM
*eye twitch*

Jaaaaaaaaam... are you trying to make things harder for me? Seriously! Damnit... the letter of the law does say that we're only supposed to write within the competition's submission stage in order to qualify, but the spirit of it is practically that if you wrote it in a single month and didn't touch it since, it wouldn't be giving you an unfair advantage (which is why the rule was put in place). The problem with following the spirit is, obviously, there's no way of knowing when you wrote it and when you stopped modifying it. I prefer following the spirit of the rules, but in this case it's just too prone to abuse.

Unless a majority of submitting authors object, I will have to disqualify it, Jam (You can write something else, though! Please do, I enjoy your pieces!). However, I am making it a priority for myself to review it in earnest, so you will be getting some mileage out of it regardless. You can probably expect it around a week after this submission stage ends, though I make no promises about this deadline; I happen to love the whooshing sound deadlines make when soaring past. :-P


Oh, and for future reference, please try to refrain from commenting on submissions until the voting period for the competition is over! Jam's piece is obviously exempt since it can't qualify for submission, but seeing Neblix's comment made me realize that this particular guideline (not rule, guideline) hasn't been mentioned recently.


So am I in trouble? DX

HalcyonSpirit
09-10-2009, 02:12 AM
What? No, like I said, it's just a guideline. Your comment just reminded me of it, and I needed to make note of it.

Neblix
09-10-2009, 03:04 AM
What? No, like I said, it's just a guideline. Your comment just reminded me of it, and I needed to make note of it.


O okai. :3

SoulinEther
09-12-2009, 04:34 AM
Sorry guys, got me a case of the flu (here's to hoping its not the swine variety), + lots of schoolwork, + apathy. I won't be voting for the freeform and from where I'm standing I don't think I'll be able to write a short story. Though I did start something like an allegory, with the main character being a plastic bag...

TheHands
09-14-2009, 03:35 PM
Holy crap, I almost forgot about this. Classwork and 4 jobs kill me. I'll be voting by the end of the day, I swear.

Random Hajile
09-15-2009, 03:07 PM
Thinker-

This was a room conceived in the minds of the forward-thinking presumers. The walls, still and cold, lined with strands of torqued wire and unfinished concrete molding gently pressed a slow buzz-hum throughout the room. There were various screens of rapidly changing miscellanea displaying to most nothing, except a fierce suspicion that it was all nonsense and posturing. Would those writers from the 20Th Century, those dreamers of misanthropic, tinted-lens views of the digitized future agree? Perhaps.
This was the swiss-watch integration of collective progress, the unheard lament of nature and her beautifully complex simplicity. These thoughts, and others like it, were birthed from the wandering mind of a man.
Inside this den of code-infused mechanica sat a small group of people. In the hazy, splotched light they relaxed, seated upon random un-strewn objects. A makeshift table linked them in ways no computer could ever process.
"Trip Aces", and a low, tense annoyance was displayed. As empty pop-caps were collected and makeshift money was redistributed, the thinker among them surrendered a quick beam of data to the winners credit card. This was honesty, fairness in its prime state. This, was a kept promise, worth? Unmeasurable. As the men started to chatter, the thinker rose.
"Ey, ray" The winner called, gesturing towards the thinker. This was not his name.
"We all saw the email. What're you gonna do?"
Synapses fired, answers were conceived, judged, and discarded until this personification of the 21'st century arrived at a response, calculated and cold.
"Simple, friend," He was not his friend. The thinker smiled, and from the winners savings account a sum of money was beamed to a waiting credit card. This, was practical - Clever. This was necessity, a prime example; Worth? Unmeasurable. As surely as this room siphoned, processed, calculated and directed the data from an uncountable number of events, places, phones, homes, minds, The Thinker would allow his infinitely calculated intentions their inevitable escape.
"I'm going to kill them all."

TheHands
09-16-2009, 05:14 PM
Voted, should have something fiction-y soon. I'm going to start doing it more consistently again (should keep writing anyway, considering my major/intended profession/commission occupation), hopefully will have a few pieces and I'll just pick the best of them.

HalcyonSpirit
10-01-2009, 07:38 AM
... It's October already, isn't it?

FFS, I hate college when it gets like this. I haven't had a chance to breathe, let alone write... Completely lost track of time.

Well, there's only been 3 entries so far for this competition, so there's an automatic 1 week extension for anyone still considering submitting! Please, let's get some more participation here... I don't want to see this competition fall apart under my watch!

SoulinEther
10-01-2009, 07:44 AM
I'm drowning in an ocean of french and french history.

i really had misplaced apathy like 3 weeks ago... kinda sad what we take for granted.

i have a short story about a grocery bag............. but unfortunately, i also have this french presentation to finish for tomorrow, and another french presentation to start and finish for next thursday. so i won't really have time.

TheHands
10-02-2009, 03:35 AM
Will have a story on Sunday. Will be a sexy story. Oh yes.

Syndicated.Corpse
10-02-2009, 10:04 PM
Mine is like a story poem?
Does that work?

TheHands
10-09-2009, 03:24 PM
Is it more story or poem? If it's in verse then it's a poem, where as prose creates anything else (fiction or otherwise).

HalcyonSpirit
10-18-2009, 08:51 PM
Aaaaand naturally, I get so caught up with work that I forget to update the competition status. Real quick:

Long story short (ba-dum-tsh!), we're in the voting period. Really we've been in the voting period since the 9th, but since I'm such a disorganized person I forgot to mention it. So voting's open until the end of the month. Please vote!


Paradiso (http://straziante.deviantart.com/art/Paradiso-135499132) by Straziante

Aura Weapon (http://www.fictionpress.com/s/2716509/1/Aura_Weapon) by neblix

Thinker (http://ocremix.org/forums/showpost.php?p=591464&postcount=236) by Random Hajile

Vote now! Voting open until November 1st!

HalcyonSpirit
10-28-2009, 05:32 AM
C'mon people... so I messed up a round, that doesn't mean you all have to disappear! Vote already!

In other news, I had to write a piece of fiction for one of my classes. The class reviewed it today. Let's just say that not only was their comments unfair toward my piece in general, they were downright insulting toward both my work and creative writing in general. There's something to be said about a Creative Writing class that can't accept any actual creative writing beyond what their preconceived notions and biases have them believe. For fuck's sake, it wasn't even far out in left field, either!

Needless to say, I'm still fuming. Maybe I'll let you guys look at it once I'm done cleaning it up.

SoulinEther
10-28-2009, 05:37 AM
C'mon people... so I messed up a round, that doesn't mean you all have to disappear! Vote already!

In other news, I had to write a piece of fiction for one of my classes. The class reviewed it today. Let's just say that not only was their comments unfair toward my piece in general, they were downright insulting toward both my work and creative writing in general. There's something to be said about a Creative Writing class that can't accept any actual creative writing beyond what their preconceived notions and biases have them believe. For fuck's sake, it wasn't even far out in left field, either!

Needless to say, I'm still fuming. Maybe I'll let you guys look at it once I'm done cleaning it up.

That stinks. I think it's often a matter of ego... maybe they felt threatened by your creativity. That isn't to say their ideas aren't valid... I remember Imagery's short critique of my first submission to this competition. I was kind of taken aback by what he had said about a stream of consciousness work I whipped up, but in all fairness, he had good reasons to criticize my work. I'm not trying to say I'm infallible or anything, but that I understand, or at least can understand by extension.

Voting... I will try. I think. Maybe. just not this week, I've a million things going on and I should not even be posting here (but it's the only thing that I can focus long enough on doing...).

HalcyonSpirit
10-28-2009, 06:08 AM
Ego? No, I think it was sheer ignorance, willful or otherwise, that was the root cause of it. But either way, I'm not complaining about the actual critiques I received during the session. I've taken them to heart and plan on heavily revising the story to make it better (it helps that I already knew it wasn't written very well in the first place). But out of the half-hour it was being reviewed, maybe five minutes contained any actual critique that pertained to my story. The rest was just willful bashing of the genre and some of the completely legitimate and creatively acceptable choices I made in the story. That's what has me so angry.

SoulinEther
10-28-2009, 07:24 AM
Ego? No, I think it was sheer ignorance, willful or otherwise, that was the root cause of it.

Well, it's terrible I say.

HalcyonSpirit
11-02-2009, 06:03 PM
Oh, what to do, what to do...

Aside from myself, there's been no votes. I'm sad. Disappointed, even. I guess I can only blame myself for not keeping things organized these past two competitions, but still...

I think I'll call the Short Story competition from July as done and tally the few votes that I've gotten. As for the Freeform competition... We'll see. I think I'll just nullify this round and let everyone resubmit their pieces in the next round they're qualified for. Some input on this would be nice, of course.

But do not fear, I refuse to let this competition die! This month is Poetry month!

THE NOVEMBER 2009 POETRY COMPETITION HAS BEGUN!

I'll see about getting notifications out sometime in the next day or two.

Neblix
11-06-2009, 02:33 PM
I got high school and robotics club and kung fu and parkour and philosophy club.

My free time just went from really high to really low.

I usually reserve three hours a day for playing vid games, so my OCR Writing Competition time is almost insignificantly small.

So, I apologize.:tomatoface::tomatoface::tomatoface:

P.S. I just turned 14 on Monday!!!

HalcyonSpirit
11-08-2009, 03:43 PM
Well, it took forever, but

THE (FREEFORM) RESULTS ARE (FINALLY) IN!

1st Place: .rogerG by SoulinEther
Runners-Up: The Unknown by HalcyonSpirit, and The Mind's Prison by wouldntyouliketoknow

Here's the vote spread:

.rogerG by SoulinEther - 5
The Unknown by HalcyonSpirit - 3
The Mind's Prison by wouldntyouliketoknow - 3
Way of the Samurai by Zipp - 2
7 lbs. by TheHands - 2


All-in-all, not a bad batch of entries. I just wish more people had voted.

As for the September competition, everyone who entered will be allowed to resubmit their entry, unmodified, in the next qualifying round.