Cafe Doom

The Critique Crypt => General writing chat => Topic started by: Ed on December 22, 2005, 04:46:46 PM

Title: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Ed on December 22, 2005, 04:46:46 PM
Try saying that when you've had a few :cheesy:

Anhoo - just thinking out loud here.  Since the demise of BCFree leaves a few critters with nowhere to go, I was wondering about setting up a section on the forum for litfic stories and wondered how many of you would be interested??

I'd make a membergroup for the people interested, so that the section would be out of bounds to everybody else.

We could crit to a prescribed system, using a similar grid to the ones on EotW and BC (and a number of other places).

Stories could be posted anonymously - sent through other members, or to me.

We can discuss stories in depth, gather opinions, swap ideas, etc.

This is all off the cuff and open to ideas.  Just need to know how many are interested in this.  Course, at times it'll be like the blind leading the blind, but it might be fun and/or informative :smiley:

Thoughts?
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Missy on December 22, 2005, 06:11:28 PM
I'll give it a whirl, Ed.  Count me in.
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: canadian on December 22, 2005, 06:23:20 PM
As much as I've publicly admitted to not being a good critter, I wouldn't mind participating with a group of people who are willing to work as a team and not get barked at constantly!
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Ed on December 22, 2005, 06:57:06 PM
Good stuff :afro:  Hopefully we can get a few more folks together too, and do the business in a friendly, supportive environment :smiley:

We've got some very good writers here, so I don't see why we can't make a go of it.
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: doolols on December 22, 2005, 07:32:10 PM
Not so much a Boot Camp, more a Stout Walking Shoe Camp eh, Blunty? I know He of BC fame referred to 'other' crit groups as "Fluffy Slipper Camps", but there has to be a better way.

I believe that many writers (I count myself in this) need pushing to get on with writing. Most of us have many other tasks to fill our days / pay the mortgage(s) / keep our relationships going. But it's all to easy, sometimes, to 'find' other things to do rather than write - read and post on forums, f'rinstance :embarassed:

We are doing / have formed a 'targetting' group over at Writing Buddies, and I'm sure it's helped us create some flash fiction pieces which are worthy of the FlashMe competition, in which we are entering. I know I ditched my first entry, 'cos it was crap, and wrote summat else which was, apparently, much better. The reason I mention it was because we laid down rules at the start - we were to be honest and open, and we were to accept the criticism in the manner it was put forward. I think this - HONESTY - is the key word in any venture such as this.

You must also try to not overload writers. I want to carry on writing long fiction - I have some self-publishing stuff coming on stream in the next few months, and some new media stuff too. But I enjoy writing short stories and flash fiction, and recognise that they are important in honing the edge of the literary pen (sort of).

Anyways, I'm certainly in. Well done for suggesting the idea. If yuo need any hekp, give me a prod.
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Ed on December 22, 2005, 07:57:55 PM
If yuo need any hekp, give me a prod.

With spelling like that, you might as well fuck off now, Gerald :grin: ;)

Glad to have you aboard, mate :smiley:

So what are we going to call it?  I keep thinking about Billy Connolly going on about that big slipper now - you know the ones they advertise in the backs of newspapers, a slipper that you can get both feet into.  He was saying about buying two and leaving them on the hearth, so when burglars break-in, they see them and go,  :o (who the fuck lives here?) :grin:

I'll try to set up a section of forum for it tomorrow or Saturday and we'll see if we can work out a few ground rules and plans for how we'll operate :afro:  I think it's one of those things where we'll need a bit of committment, otherwise it'll fizzle out, but nothing too draconian or taxing.
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: SharonBell on December 22, 2005, 08:02:42 PM
How about a "Flip-Flop Camp?"  :bleh: I could do that, maybe. Or maybe not. See, I'm flip-flopping already.  :smiley:

Blunt, I sent you a crit grid that I used in judging for another (now defunct) website. Donna helped with that, too. You're free to pillage and plunder that as a crit grid.

I'm interested, HOWEVER, what would the participation requirement be? Some weeks, I confess, it's all I can do to squeeze out a flash. Day job sucks my brain out 24/7. Give me some fer instances. Like would there be a required number of crits to do?

This has always been a friendly and honest forum and I expect that tone would continue. Just need to know what expectations are so I don't disappoint folks.
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: doolols on December 22, 2005, 08:09:15 PM
I think the idea is that it's a bit separate,  Sharon, so you only do it if you feel you have the time to do it. The rest of the forum stays as-is.

And Blunt - it's not my spelling, it's my eyes (and, of course, my fingers!)

Name? What are those awful 'socks-with-bits-on-the-bottom' things - slipper socks. But they've got a trade name. Maybe we could use those?

Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Ed on December 22, 2005, 08:47:56 PM
Blunt, I sent you a crit grid that I used in judging for another (now defunct) website. Donna helped with that, too. You're free to pillage and plunder that as a crit grid.
Thanks :afro:  We might just do that. 

Quote
I'm interested, HOWEVER, what would the participation requirement be? Some weeks, I confess, it's all I can do to squeeze out a flash. Day job sucks my brain out 24/7. Give me some fer instances. Like would there be a required number of crits to do?
Still thinking out loud here - nothing's solid yet.  The critting will have to be structured to a template, to be of any use, so that everybody's marking the same things. 

Critiquing really does help with the learning process, I think.  With this in mind, and the principle of fairness, I think folks should crit as many other stories as they can manage in each session.  Of course there will be times when members can't manage to write a story for a session, or crit more than a few stories, but it would be nice to have maximum available effort, whatever that may be at the time.  In the last BC primary I critted 11 of the 14 stories, word count varied from 4000 and something down to about 800, but that was a lot of effort.  Usually I tried to get at least 8 done.  What I really don't want to see is people submitting a story and then sitting back and watching, not doing crits and not discussing, but I don't think any of us are like that anyway.


Quote
This has always been a friendly and honest forum and I expect that tone would continue. Just need to know what expectations are so I don't disappoint folks.

The lit group would be more formal and, as Gerald says, it'll be completely separate from what already goes on here - nothing else will change.  The aim will be for it to be honest, above all else, but author friendly too, with positive notes as well as negative ones.  BC can be quite depressing at times, with authors' stories getting ripped to shreds (ashamed to say I've done this) without regard for the author's feelings.  I'd like our version to be more supportive than that.  It will probably be hard at times, though - the truth hurts sometimes, especially if you think you've written a good story and it turns out not to be that great.  (That's happened to me a few times)

The thing is, if you get into the habit of turning out a new story every two weeks, they're not as precious as they are when you manage one every so often, so that makes it a bit easier.

BTW - All the work on that part of the forum will be out of range of Googlebots and other search engine spiders, so your work won't suddenly turn up if somebody searches for it on the internet.
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: canadian on December 22, 2005, 08:48:32 PM
Hmmmm ... I've been brainstorming with myself. Yeah, it hurts.

Howzabout: Critters from Doom?

And Billy Connolly's bit about big slippers ... laughed my ass off at that one! The guy's a hoot. Doug popped the video in for me when I was over in England.
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Ed on December 22, 2005, 08:55:24 PM
Hmmmm ... I've been brainstorming with myself. Yeah, it hurts.

Howzabout: Critters from Doom?

And Billy Connolly's bit about big slippers ... laughed my ass off at that one! The guy's a hoot. Doug popped the video in for me when I was over in England.


 :grin:  Critters from Doom - I like it :afro:

Could look a bit iffy on a resume, though :grin:

How about 'Litcamp'?  :huh: 
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: canadian on December 22, 2005, 10:48:10 PM
'Litcamp' ... hmmm ... kinda sounds like a bunch of drunken poofs, don't it?  ::)

What's wrong with Litfic Crit-Crypt?
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: SharonBell on December 22, 2005, 11:27:03 PM
Or, perhaps "Campy Literature?"  :bleh: But absolutely no "Band Camp!"  :shocked:
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: doolols on December 23, 2005, 02:32:28 AM
Ooo! A naming thing!  :dance:

Cafedoom Critiquing Circle? - bit wordy

Cafedoom Critters? - quite like that.

Blunty's Bully-Boys?  :hidin:
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: santhere on December 23, 2005, 03:02:32 AM
I would, but I am torn between two languages whom I both love to death. Alas I keep cheated on one of them with the other, simply put I am a lingo-slut :lol:
And then there is the bit about stories...
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Dan on December 23, 2005, 04:04:54 AM
Sign me up  :afro:
Would def be up for being involved.
Think my g/f would be happy as well, she hates horror and there's a fine balance to be had between how much she loves me and will read my work and how far into my twisted mind she wants to climb...
Keep me posted on developements
D
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Ed on December 23, 2005, 06:04:56 AM
'Litcamp' ... hmmm ... kinda sounds like a bunch of drunken poofs, don't it?  ::)

What's wrong with Litfic Crit-Crypt?

 :grin:  Yes it does - and I don't even own a cravat :/

Quote
But absolutely no "Band Camp!
Funny, every time AK came out with, "At Boot Camp... blah, blah, etc." over at EotW, I pictured that girl in American Pie saying, "At band camp..."  :grin: made me laugh.

Perhaps you're right and we should just go with Litfic Crit-Crypt.  There's no particular reason why we need a fancy name.

Quote
Blunty's Bully-Boys?
  :grin:  Hand over your sweets unless you want a thick ear, litboy :afro:

Santhere - if you want to change your mind at any time, just let me know :smiley:

Dan - glad to have you aboard :afro:  Maybe you'll end up with her saying, "Hmm... I like it, but I don't get it :scratch: " (like Mrs Blunt  :grin: )

I'll try to get all this started later, but it might have to wait until tomorrow - it's my youngest nipper's 6th birthday today, so we'll have eleven kids here later :shocked:  I'll see how things go.

Any thoughts on a preferred forum colour/layout?  We've got a few choices of skin colours (can't remember what they are) and we could use the default SMF theme, which is white and nothing like this forum at all - no gfx, just simple.  Or we could stick with this :scratch:
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Dan on December 23, 2005, 06:11:33 AM
A whole room of 6 year olds -  good luck with that!

:2thumbs:
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Ed on December 23, 2005, 06:15:30 AM
A whole room of 6 year olds -  good luck with that!

:2thumbs:

Yes, and every one of them at the peak of a sugar rush :cheesy: Oh happy, happy day... :huh:
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: SharonBell on December 23, 2005, 07:01:44 AM
Eleven 6-year olds in your home? Is there no public place where you could have the party and spare your home? We used "Chucky Cheese" or some other such place after ours hit 4 and we couldn't bear the children climbing the walls. Got them out of our house. Of course, if we lost one or two to the skee-ball machine it was a bit of a problem... :grin: Anyway to cover your home in plastic before the little beasts arrive?  :nk:

Good luck!
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: doolols on December 23, 2005, 08:56:45 AM
Indeed, good luck on the party, Ed  :shuh

On the forum, I always prefer simple, clean, and easy to read.  Black text on white is good, not too many smilies, plain colours.

For a little while, I'm been playing with forums (fora?). I like this style: http://aspiration.suddenlaunch3.com/index.cgi

I used to have a beautiful forum on my website which was in Apple Mac colours - all snow white and grey. Sometimes, the forum people have examples to look at? It's your decision, of course, but since you asked ...  ;)
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Missy on December 23, 2005, 09:02:45 AM
I'll go with the flow over colours and names, I'm not fussy.
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: doolols on December 23, 2005, 09:09:32 AM
I'm happy with anything, really. It's not my call. But these tired old eyes of mine work better with certain combinations of text / background. One of these days, I'll have to have a proper eye test, and get some proper glasses, rather than the £10 supoermarket ones which I keep losing  :(
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: canadian on December 23, 2005, 09:30:28 AM
Like Gerald, my aging eyes work best for longer periods of time with simple black on white. The set up at Doom's loads of fun but I don't spend hours reading posts like I probably would be whilst critiquing a number of stories.

Good luck with the little nippers, Blunt. Better you than me!

And look at these cute holiday be-hatted bubble faces:  :sthumb:  :ssmiley  :shuh

Wonderful!
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Ed on December 23, 2005, 01:26:34 PM
Can you hear the bedlam behind me?  :/  Nightmare.

Umm... I think I'll use the default SMF theme and see how we go with it :sthumb:
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: canadian on December 23, 2005, 02:14:00 PM
Can you hear the bedlam behind me?  :/ 

Nope. Glad of it, too. It's turned nice and quiet here now that the jackhammer tearing up the road outside my office has stopped!
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Ed on December 23, 2005, 03:52:56 PM
Sharon - are you in or not? :huh:  Just wondering because I'm currently setting the member groups to allow access to the new forums :smiley:
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Walker on December 23, 2005, 04:05:47 PM
Geeez, I should get my head outta my ass and join the living again. I've been so side-tracked and busy and tired and...and....
Count me in too, Blunt. I thought this was gonna fly a long time ago with Literary Refugee Camp, but that turned out to be a bust.
I may not contribute very often with stories (as much as I can) but I love to crit others work. I think I learn as much from that as I do from writing.
Great idea, this is.
 :sthumb:
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Ed on December 23, 2005, 04:20:23 PM
Glad to have you aboard, too, Walker :smiley:

Any more for any more?  This isn't an elitist thing - if anybody wants in at any time, just give me a holler :sthumb:
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: SharonBell on December 23, 2005, 04:34:14 PM
Sharon - are you in or not? :huh:  Just wondering because I'm currently setting the member groups to allow access to the new forums :smiley:

Count me IN.  :sthumb:
Title: Re: Litfic Crit-crypt
Post by: Ed on December 23, 2005, 04:49:01 PM
Done :sthumb: