At 8/8/12 04:37 PM, starwarsjunkie wrote:
M'kay here's what I'm thinking. The account (for now we'll refer to it as Writing101, if anybody has a better name feel free to suggest it) will initially consist of a set of guidelines and links to important threads, such as:
Lit101; it's more applicable. And those links, as well as the lounge, would need to be included in the table of contents. A survival guide and tutorial system combined into one is the basic idea. A user can pick up advice, tips, and direction on writing, while also learning how to navigate this fair playground we've built thus far.
We could also include things which aren't necessarily important, but are of interest within the community such as:
Agreed. And again, that would work into the survival guide aspect.
These could help new members get involved without having their very first contributions to the forum be critiqued. Not that getting critiqued is bad, I just feel like there's so many people who get discouraged when their small submissions are subjected to critique by those of us with high levels of expectations. They just need a way to maybe get involved first.
I think it's also a combination of not expecting to *get* critiqued. I'm going back and forth with someone now and I'm realizing that maybe he doesn't understand what my angle is. So yeah, letting people know that critique is kinda the thing we do here, versus mindlessly gushing over every thread, would be a good thing.
We should probably link to the NG Forum rules as well. Any way we can get a rule subset of our own on here?
No, no, no. Setting up rules is not a good idea, that'd just be stepping on toes. What we should be focusing on is not so much structuring, but integration. Help people get involved, get synchronized; y'know, jive with us. Setting up rules? I'd leave that to Tom and Co.
Now, for the guidelines, should we put these all in one news post? Or should there be threads, created by Writing101, detailing each area?
Like I said, the guidelines should be structured like a survival guide. Each resource should have a paragraph or so on what it is, how to use it, and how to *best* use it. So, for example, with the review thread; you link to it, describe its purpose in about a paragraph or so, reiterate the "rules" for playing along, then translate that so new users can quickly jump in. For example, with the review thread, a lot of people had a tough time figuring out they had to give critique, and link to it within their request, before they got critique.
Here are the topics for guidelines and my initial thoughts.
In this case I think you're blending ideas. Submitting stories, critiquing; that falls under the tutorials umbrella. So the survival guide shows and explains the landmarks of the site, right? The tutorials would then provide the how-tos. So lets say someone wants to jump into the review thread and help out there, we'll label them Reader Zeta. So Reader Zeta has zero experience as a critic. This is what I envision the best path would be:
- UserX tells Zeta very nicely to look up the Survival Guide in Lit101 after Zeta gives a terribly stilted and unhelpful critique
- Zeta goes to Lit101, looks up the Survival Guide in the Table of Contents, and finds the Review Request Thread entry
- Confused, Zeta visits that article
- Zeta reads it, but then under the "More Resources" header they see a link to "Advanced Critique - Speculative Fiction" under "Tutorials"
- Zeta clicks that since they're really interested in fantasy/sci-fi fiction, but then they see "Pre-req Reading: Getting Started - Critique"
- Zeta clicks the link and is taken to the article "Getting Started - Critique"
- Zeta devours the entry which gives an overview of providing critique within the scope of literature and the writing forum
- Under "Tutorials" in the "More Resources" header Zeta sees: "Advanced Critique - Speculative Fiction" so they go back to that article
- Zeta reads that and looks again under the "More Resources" header and finds "Critique Dos and Donts" under "Tutorials"
- That article quotes good and bad critique with the purpose of setting a standard for insight, length, and tone
- Zeta reads that and under the "More Resources" header sees "Recommended Reads & Highlights" under "Survival Guide"
- Zeta goes there wanting to find something short they can contribute to, but all the threads have plenty of critiques
- Zeta then goes to the thread list in the forum and finds a thread with 0 replies titled "SF/S/N: Slipstream"
- Zeta sees that it's still critique-less and decides to read it
- Zeta enjoys it because it just so happens to be a short story that's Science Fiction
- Using what Zeta has learned thus far, they provide a concise and productive critique
- Zeta then returns to Lit101 and in the Table of Contents finds "Thread Labels" under the Survival Guide section
- To Zeta's great pleasure, the article explains that "SF/S/N" breaks down into "Science Fiction," "Short," and "Narrative"
- Zeta notices that there's other genres too: "UF" for Urban Fantasy, "PR" for Paranormal Romance, and "PP" for Police Procedural to name a few
- They also see that [S]hort is defined as a maximum of 500 words, that [M]edium is defined as a max of 2,000 words, [L]ong is up to 5,000 words, and [E]pic is uncapped
- Under mode Zeta sees "P" is for poetry, and "S" is for script
- Then, for reasons unexplained, Zeta dies. It's very tragic, but at least Zeta died knowing a bit about getting around the Writing Forum
That's how I envision the process going. Seems pretty cool, right?
I noticed that Art101has lots of tutorials, while this is a really good idea, that means we actually have to make these tutorials. That will come later I think.
Built up over time, with the Table of Content kept up to date.
Once we get this account set up, we can have it create contests for the forum. Not necessarily contests with cash prizes, but still, things that get everyone involved. Maybe we can revive the Monthly Writing Contest series.
Lit101 could be used for many different things, and that sounds like another potentially great use. Creating projects through that userpage could be useful. I mean, once we're steeped in the thing I'm sure we'll find many great applications for it.
That's what I got for now. Lemme know what everybody thinks and then we can create this thing!
Create it. I would also recommend using a neutral e-mail address and PM'ing the details to people who would be able to put it to some use at some point (Coop, Ekublai, Deft&Evil...)
Oh yea, we're not stepping on Ekublai's and Coop's toes by doing this are we? I feel like they should be involved, and at least have access to the account, seeing as how they're the mods and all.
They'd be on the list to get the details, yes. As far as contributing, they're both busy with current tasks (being a mod and organizing the Anthology), but I'm sure their input will come eventually.
At 8/8/12 05:04 PM, Tha-Slaya wrote:
I've been reading this thread, but haven't posted because I didn't have anything new to add. With Starwars's post, I can gladly say that I'd love to help in anyway possible.
You can come up with a list of survival guide and tutorial topics. If you feel comfortable enough you could even start writing up the articles. Once done you can dump it in the dumping grounds for download and review by an organizer.
You could even type up a list of topics you'd like to see covered personally.
Or research the various stories upload, try to find common issues, patterns, problems, anything we can try to address and resolve.
Ultimately, with these types of projects, you have to be a self-starter.