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  • Congratulations to the winners of the Podcastle flash fiction contest!

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Congratulations to the winners of the Podcastle flash fiction contest!

Author Topic: Escape Pod flash contest - official discussion thread  (Read 53223 times)

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Reply #100 on: September 23, 2012, 07:53:43 PM
I just hope this didn't affect anyone's perception of The Inalien Crowd.

I don't remember noticing any weird formatting, so I guess it didn't bother me.



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Reply #101 on: September 23, 2012, 10:08:06 PM
I just hope this didn't affect anyone's perception of The Inalien Crowd.

I don't remember noticing any weird formatting, so I guess it didn't bother me.
It bothered me, but not enough to detract from my enjoyment of the story.

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Reply #102 on: September 26, 2012, 05:46:31 PM
Ugh. I feel like a terrible person.
When the contest first started I read all the stories in the group, posted a comment on each one exactly what I thought and voted on them.
But I seem to be running out of steam. In Group 2 I posted in perhaps 3 threads, and I still haven't read all of Group 3 yet, much less Group 4. :\

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johnfrye3

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Reply #103 on: September 26, 2012, 06:23:44 PM
It's $0.05 a word, or $20, whichever is greater, so $37.5 for a 750 word story.

(The submission guidelines are a bit confusing, but the rate is always $0.05 for new fiction, it's the minimum that's different for flash).

This was from awhile ago, but I want to re-echo daneyuleb's sad face that the winners will not be paid a SFWA-qualifying prize.  I know that the winners are likely to be members already, but on the off-chance that one is not, it would be great for the top three to get awarded $50 each for winning, and have any later honourable mentions that are broadcast be paid the standard rate (and similar for the other contests).  Anyone who wins an Escape Pod contest is worthy of being an associate member of SFWA.

This is a contest, not a standard submission, and since the stakes are higher, the awards should be greater (in my opinion, feel free to disagree).



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Reply #104 on: September 26, 2012, 06:34:44 PM
I know that the winners are likely to be members already,

I don't think that's true historically, and I don't think there's any reason it needs to be true.  If any thing, I'd think that a non-SFWAn has a better chance here than in usual slush because the stories are judged blindly by your peers.  In the preivous contest, I believe that for at least some of the writers who won, this was their first published story, and I think a minority might've been SFWA members.

Having SFWA membership doesn't make one's stories better than others.  It's a nice milestone to reach, a nice feather in the cap, but that didn't stop my "Escalation" from being trounced in the first round of voting!  :)

This is a contest, not a standard submission, and since the stakes are higher, the awards should be greater (in my opinion, feel free to disagree).

Now, don't get me wrong, if someone says "I'd like to pay you more money" I'm not going to argue.  But I don't see why flash contest winners should get better pay than those who go through slush.  The stakes are not higher, the stakes are the same--paid publication in an awesome podcast.  They are just alternate routes to the same worthwhile destination.



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Reply #105 on: September 26, 2012, 06:38:44 PM
Unrelated to my last post, I have a question to raise.

During the last contest, all entries made to Podcastle were read by the editors, and also considered as if they were slush even if they didn't win.  But for Escape Pod and Pseudopod, they weren't, meaning that stories that were rejected from the contest could still be submitted in the slush at a later date.  (I think that Pseudopod and Escape Pod meant to read them also, but with other responsibilities, never got to it).

So, is it expected to be similar this time?  I know Mur is a busy, busy, being, so I'm guessing she's not going to volunteer to take on extra slush. 

Basically, I just want to know whether my rejected story (or stories) can be submitted to Escape Pod in the future or not.



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Reply #106 on: September 26, 2012, 06:50:08 PM
Unrelated to my last post, I have a question to raise.

During the last contest, all entries made to Podcastle were read by the editors, and also considered as if they were slush even if they didn't win.  But for Escape Pod and Pseudopod, they weren't, meaning that stories that were rejected from the contest could still be submitted in the slush at a later date.  (I think that Pseudopod and Escape Pod meant to read them also, but with other responsibilities, never got to it).

So, is it expected to be similar this time?  I know Mur is a busy, busy, being, so I'm guessing she's not going to volunteer to take on extra slush. 

Basically, I just want to know whether my rejected story (or stories) can be submitted to Escape Pod in the future or not.
Good point.

Science is what you do when the funding panel thinks you know what you're doing. Fiction is the same only without the funding.


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Reply #107 on: September 26, 2012, 06:54:56 PM
This is a contest, not a standard submission, and since the stakes are higher, the awards should be greater (in my opinion, feel free to disagree).

I don't know in what way the stakes are higher. It's worth noting that 3 out of 92 - i.e., about 1 in 30 - of the submissions are guaranteed publication, and there's a good chance others will be published too based on prior precedent (I have no say in that). That's much better publication odds than regular submissions to EP, especially for flash stories (which are almost never accepted these days).

During the last contest, all entries made to Podcastle were read by the editors, and also considered as if they were slush even if they didn't win.  But for Escape Pod and Pseudopod, they weren't, meaning that stories that were rejected from the contest could still be submitted in the slush at a later date.  (I think that Pseudopod and Escape Pod meant to read them also, but with other responsibilities, never got to it).

Well, you'd have to ask the editors about that - my guess is that Mur is not following the contest, and I'm not sure whether Nathan is or not. But it's worth noting that the chances of a 750 word story of making it through the slush process at EP are really small. As a slush reader for EP, my advice for anyone who wants to try submission of a contest entry to the regular EP slush pile is to think if the story can be expanded to 1500-2000 words.



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Reply #108 on: September 26, 2012, 07:03:49 PM
The stakes are higher in risk to ego, but I'm not sure that counts, lol. Of course, that's also the greatest reward of entering. The opportunity to sit back and watch people argue about your story is a huge bene. You learn so much more here than by submitting to slush. My most detailed personal rejection didn't come close to the feedback here.




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Reply #109 on: September 26, 2012, 07:19:14 PM
The stakes are higher in risk to ego, but I'm not sure that counts, lol. Of course, that's also the greatest reward of entering. The opportunity to sit back and watch people argue about your story is a huge bene. You learn so much more here than by submitting to slush. My most detailed personal rejection didn't come close to the feedback here.



Pretty much sums up exactly what I was trying to convey: risk of ego.  And the other points are well taken, it is great that there is that guaranteed publication at the end, and with the stories I have read so far I think that the winners will well-deserve it.

my advice for anyone who wants to try submission of a contest entry to the regular EP slush pile is to think if the story can be expanded to 1500-2000 words.

Since I trimmed my submission down from that length, I think it will be an interesting task to try to build it back up in a way that makes it stronger.



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Reply #110 on: September 26, 2012, 07:29:10 PM

[qoute]
Well, you'd have to ask the editors about that - my guess is that Mur is not following the contest, and I'm not sure whether Nathan is or not. But it's worth noting that the chances of a 750 word story of making it through the slush process at EP are really small. As a slush reader for EP, my advice for anyone who wants to try submission of a contest entry to the regular EP slush pile is to think if the story can be expanded to 1500-2000 words.
[/quote]

I think Nathan is because I've seen him comment on a few pieces.



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Reply #111 on: September 26, 2012, 07:52:34 PM
I suspect Shawn isn't participating, and may not participate in the Pseudopod contest. Ben didn't in the last one, as that's shortly after the start-up many-hours paying job took away most of his volunteer time.  I will be, and am planning on nudging authors to submit some items that I think have a good chance of making it through the process.

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Reply #112 on: September 26, 2012, 08:29:56 PM
Okay, I'll probably consider EP and PP stories resubmittable unless I hear otherwise, and will ask DKT about Podcastle.

Boy, I hope that flash stories have some chance at Escape Pod, have had one pending there for 122 days so I'm guessing it wasn't rejected by the slush team and is on Mighty Mur's desk...



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Reply #113 on: September 26, 2012, 11:49:14 PM
I know that the winners are likely to be members already,

I don't think that's true historically, and I don't think there's any reason it needs to be true.  If any thing, I'd think that a non-SFWAn has a better chance here than in usual slush because the stories are judged blindly by your peers.  In the preivous contest, I believe that for at least some of the writers who won, this was their first published story, and I think a minority might've been SFWA members.



It was my first published story, and I am still not a member of SFWA (had to finish my dissertation rather than focusing on fiction), but I hope to be someday!



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Reply #114 on: September 27, 2012, 12:24:06 AM
Finished my story, and only 11 days past the deadline!  :P

Oh well, at least this got me motivated to get off my metaphorical arse and write again.


A story of lust, violence and jelly.

Well, Here I Am. My little slice of the blaggin' world.


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Reply #115 on: September 27, 2012, 02:17:53 AM
Noob question, but what is SFWA and why would one want to be in it?



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Reply #116 on: September 27, 2012, 02:21:55 AM
Noob question, but what is SFWA and why would one want to be in it?

It's the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. Here's a link with further info.



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Reply #117 on: September 27, 2012, 11:27:46 AM
Noob question, but what is SFWA and why would one want to be in it?

It's the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. Here's a link with further info.


What Talia said.  And, at least for me, it wasn't so important to me to be in SFWA, but it was a milestone to become qualified to join.  I joined for a year as a trial, and I'm wondering why this is supposed to be worth $80 a year.  You get to vote for the Nebulas, which is cool if that's important to you. 



daneyuleb

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Reply #118 on: September 27, 2012, 04:44:40 PM
What Talia said.  And, at least for me, it wasn't so important to me to be in SFWA, but it was a milestone to become qualified to join.  I joined for a year as a trial, and I'm wondering why this is supposed to be worth $80 a year.  You get to vote for the Nebulas, which is cool if that's important to you. 

Yep--it's the milestone aspect that's important to some.  2 "qualifying" stories in a pro market get you an associates membership, 3 get you a full one.  But... qualifying includes the caveat: needs to pay at least $50.00.  I wish they expanded that to allow for shorter fiction--say, 5 less than 1000 word pieces in pro markets also qualifying you, regardless of the total pay, something like that--or maybe a total word count of all stories published being an alternative qualifier.  As it stands now, in a lot of qualifying markets, flash counts for absolutely nada in terms of the SFWA--someone could publish twenty 500 word stories and not qualify. 

I just started submitting this year, and full membership is a goal I set for myself.  The actual money itself doesn't matter at all, really--to me, counting for SWFA would be much more desirable.

(Of course, on the plus side...its not like I'm gonna win anyway!)



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Reply #119 on: September 27, 2012, 05:22:00 PM
Yep--it's the milestone aspect that's important to some.  2 "qualifying" stories in a pro market get you an associates membership, 3 get you a full one.  But... qualifying includes the caveat: needs to pay at least $50.00.  I wish they expanded that to allow for shorter fiction--say, 5 less than 1000 word pieces in pro markets also qualifying you, regardless of the total pay, something like that--or maybe a total word count of all stories published being an alternative qualifier.  As it stands now, in a lot of qualifying markets, flash counts for absolutely nada in terms of the SFWA--someone could publish twenty 500 word stories and not qualify. 

I just started submitting this year, and full membership is a goal I set for myself.  The actual money itself doesn't matter at all, really--to me, counting for SWFA would be much more desirable.

(Of course, on the plus side...its not like I'm gonna win anyway!)

Yeah, a lot of SF-related rules tend to be biased against flash fiction.  SFWA qualification, Hugo/Nebula categories, overall pay.  Some of my best received (and in my opinion best written) short stories are 500-600 words, and because of the tightness of the format, they often took more work on my part than stories 3x that length.

On the other hand, for SFWA qualification in general, I didn't terribly mind that qualification because it has kept me eligible to submit to Writers of the Future for longer (because my $40 Daily Science Fiction sale didn't count against me)



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Reply #120 on: September 27, 2012, 06:40:21 PM
another noob question. What is slush?



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Reply #121 on: September 27, 2012, 08:31:58 PM
another noob question. What is slush?

It's a term used by story publishers to denote submitted stories, normally in the context of an open submission call.

There was originally a longer discussion in this thread, that started with a response to that question, about whether or not that is an appropriate term. Since it has nothing to do with the contest I split it out - you can find (and continue) that thread in the writing forum.



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Reply #122 on: October 05, 2012, 09:49:09 PM
As this is my first flash contest, I am wondering whether comments already posted on the stories will be carried over to subsequent rounds.  The rules imply that new fora will be created each round, so that previous comments will not be immediately visible.  I can see pros and cons to first round comments being conforaneous with the later rounds, just wanted to make sure I understand the rules correctly. 



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Reply #123 on: October 05, 2012, 10:11:08 PM
As this is my first flash contest, I am wondering whether comments already posted on the stories will be carried over to subsequent rounds.  The rules imply that new fora will be created each round, so that previous comments will not be immediately visible.  I can see pros and cons to first round comments being conforaneous with the later rounds, just wanted to make sure I understand the rules correctly. 

Previously, the whole thread was moved with a locked placeholder in prior rounds pointing to the redirected thread.

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Reply #124 on: October 05, 2012, 11:29:17 PM
Previously, the whole thread was moved with a locked placeholder in prior rounds pointing to the redirected thread.

Thanks for the clarification.