Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Open topics on the Contest itself, to include results-watch threads and other items of note.
Wulf Moon
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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby Wulf Moon » Fri Feb 01, 2019 4:54 pm

Dragonchef wrote:
Wulf Moon wrote:
BEHOLD! Moon's SUPER SECRET #19: Mock-up your story!


Well, hmm. Interesting idea. Did you come up with this all on your own or did you find it on the wishful-writer's-should-dos shelf in some dusty hidden gem bookstore? I will def have to give this a try, Wulfy.


This is a trick I discoverd a couple decades ago. I was already doing publishing for my own financial marketing business. One day I thought, Let's see what my story looks like in a book publishing template. I dropped in my fiction story, printed it out...and saw loooong paragraphs. Too long. I didn't like seeing paragraphs like that in books. I certainly didn't like seeing them in my manuscript.

But they were invisible to me until I did that.

I've given you a simpler way to do it. Do print your entire story out on paper, don't do this on a screen. It will reveal the truth. And the truth will set you free.

~Moon~
Wulf Moon
Q4 Vol 35 "Super-Duper Moongirl..."
Annual Critters Readers' Choice Award: First Place, "War Dog," Best SF&F Short Story of 2018
Gala Awards Ceremony Speech: https://youtu.be/9Vf1eeeKPRA Located at 1:09: 00

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby storysinger » Sat Feb 02, 2019 10:57 am

I will be doing that in the near future. Appreciate the info.
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Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality.
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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby TimE » Sat Feb 02, 2019 11:51 am

The seven pickle plot? Looking forward to this one!

I'm ashamed to admit the formatting tip (the most obvious one) has been the best for me so far. The Writer's site I used loses indentations, doesn't care for double space or font, so I've kinda got lazy in that area. Doh!
5*R 2*HM - I thought I was getting closer, but perhaps not.
CWA-Debut Dagger shortlist. https://thecwa.co.uk/colours/ (Still trying to find my genre - but perhaps it scifi!)

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby AnikeKirsten » Sun Feb 03, 2019 11:06 pm

Wulf Moon wrote:
I said MOCK-UP, as in make it look like pages in a science fiction book. Like text in a fantasy magazine. You see, we writers get used to reading in the code, Courier, double spaced, one inch margins, etc., etc. And it's great for editing--space between lines to mark changes, monospaced font helps us see typos because they can't hide, you know the drill. But you never see what your writing actually looks like in a book or a magazine! And guess what? That's important!


Huh. I've never heard this tip before and it makes a load of sense. I now have the urge to do this to all my stories. Pretty curious to see what the difference will be when done.
V.35: Q4 - SHM.
V.36: Q1 - HM.
V.36: Q2 - Pending.

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby RSchibler » Mon Feb 04, 2019 3:42 am

AnikeKirsten wrote:
Wulf Moon wrote:
I said MOCK-UP, as in make it look like pages in a science fiction book. Like text in a fantasy magazine. You see, we writers get used to reading in the code, Courier, double spaced, one inch margins, etc., etc. And it's great for editing--space between lines to mark changes, monospaced font helps us see typos because they can't hide, you know the drill. But you never see what your writing actually looks like in a book or a magazine! And guess what? That's important!


Huh. I've never heard this tip before and it makes a load of sense. I now have the urge to do this to all my stories. Pretty curious to see what the difference will be when done.


It makes you feel very, very, accomplished- "oooh, look at the pretty words all professionalized!"

or

very, very, silly- "what is this hot mess on my screen?".
Trying to refute entropy with words.

Vol34: R, HM, R
Vol35: HM, R, R, HM
Vol36: R, pending

ALWAYS available for critiques. PM me.

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby vsutherland01 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 8:46 am

I love printing out stories for editing porpoises.
Honorable Mentions: 4
Rejections: 5

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Dragonchef
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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby Dragonchef » Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:03 am

vsutherland01 wrote:I love printing out stories for editing porpoises.

Wait...you have porpoises that edit? wotf015
R = 2
SHM = 1 (Q3.V32)
WINs = Zip
F = Zero
SF = Zilcho
HM = Nada
wotf013

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby storysinger » Mon Feb 04, 2019 12:14 pm

Dragonchef wrote:Wait...you have porpoises that edit?
wotf019
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Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality.
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Wulf Moon
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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby Wulf Moon » Tue Feb 05, 2019 8:08 am

Heading to Denver, then Colorado Springs and SUPERSTARS Writing Conference on that scholarship I was awarded. Meeting Dave for the first time--life goal ACHIEVED! Brought SKIN GAME for Jim Butcher to sign. 7 Point Plot awaits my return. Speaking of porpoises, SO LONG AND THANKS FOR ALL THE FISH!

~Beastmaster Moon~
Wulf Moon
Q4 Vol 35 "Super-Duper Moongirl..."
Annual Critters Readers' Choice Award: First Place, "War Dog," Best SF&F Short Story of 2018
Gala Awards Ceremony Speech: https://youtu.be/9Vf1eeeKPRA Located at 1:09: 00

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Dragonchef
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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby Dragonchef » Tue Feb 05, 2019 8:28 am

Wulf Moon wrote:Heading to Denver, then Colorado Springs and SUPERSTARS Writing Conference on that scholarship I was awarded. Meeting Dave for the first time--life goal ACHIEVED! Brought SKIN GAME for Jim Butcher to sign. 7 Point Plot awaits my return. Speaking of porpoises, SO LONG AND THANKS FOR ALL THE FISH!

~Beastmaster Moon~

Safe travels, Wulfy. May the FISH be with you.
wotf009
R = 2
SHM = 1 (Q3.V32)
WINs = Zip
F = Zero
SF = Zilcho
HM = Nada
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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby TimE » Tue Feb 05, 2019 9:24 am

Don't forget the pickle to go with the fish.
5*R 2*HM - I thought I was getting closer, but perhaps not.
CWA-Debut Dagger shortlist. https://thecwa.co.uk/colours/ (Still trying to find my genre - but perhaps it scifi!)

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby SCAFontaine » Tue Feb 05, 2019 10:05 pm

Have a great time Moon!

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby storysinger » Wed Feb 06, 2019 7:27 am

Good luck on your journey Wulf. Remember to breathe deep and enjoy every moment.
HM-1
Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality.
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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby DoctorJest » Wed Feb 06, 2019 11:14 pm

I can haz a first draft. My Q2 is properly underway!

(I saw a quote from Neil Gaiman popping up on that MasterClass thing online -- something to the effect of, "The purpose of writing your second draft is to make it look like you knew what you were doing when you wrote the first one." This totally feels like that.)
WotF: R:0 / HM:4 / sHM:1 / SF:0 / F:0
Latest subs: Q2.v36 is in!

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby TimE » Thu Feb 07, 2019 5:21 am

DoctorJest wrote:
(I saw a quote from Neil Gaiman popping up on that MasterClass thing online -- something to the effect of, "The purpose of writing your second draft is to make it look like you knew what you were doing when you wrote the first one." This totally feels like that.)


Editing foreshadowing into early chapters so that it looks like you planned everything meticulously all along. Good stuff!

BTW - as a matter of comparison, the Crime Writer's Awards Debut Dagger costs $46 to enter. There's one prize of $646. You don't know if you've done any more than the short list until the night of the awards. The awards dinner is $130 per person, so if you take your partner and stay overnight in London, you'd need to win just to break even, if you lived in the UK, and there's no guarantee of being published.
(Though I am trying to turn my Q4 HM short story into a novel with the idea of entering it - so I must need my head examining.)
5*R 2*HM - I thought I was getting closer, but perhaps not.
CWA-Debut Dagger shortlist. https://thecwa.co.uk/colours/ (Still trying to find my genre - but perhaps it scifi!)

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby TimE » Thu Feb 07, 2019 6:37 am

Don't recall if it was re-posted, but this is an idea of the value of WotF. https://bradrtorgersen.wordpress.com/20 ... e-contest/
5*R 2*HM - I thought I was getting closer, but perhaps not.
CWA-Debut Dagger shortlist. https://thecwa.co.uk/colours/ (Still trying to find my genre - but perhaps it scifi!)

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby storysinger » Thu Feb 07, 2019 12:43 pm

TimE wrote:Don't recall if it was re-posted, but this is an idea of the value of WotF. https://bradrtorgersen.wordpress.com/20 ... e-contest/


Very enlightening. I had no idea all of those things happened for the winners. A must read for all forumites. wotf015
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Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality.
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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby Wulf Moon » Tue Feb 12, 2019 2:49 am

News flash! Our lead instructors for the WotF workshop? David Farland, Tim Powers and Orson Scott Card. Am I dreaming? Pinch me!

Just back from Superstars Writing Seminar. Met WotF contest judges David Farland, Rebecca Moesta, and Kevin J. Anderson. Give me a couple days to catch up and I'll post some fresh secrets.

Keep writing!

~Moon~
Wulf Moon
Q4 Vol 35 "Super-Duper Moongirl..."
Annual Critters Readers' Choice Award: First Place, "War Dog," Best SF&F Short Story of 2018
Gala Awards Ceremony Speech: https://youtu.be/9Vf1eeeKPRA Located at 1:09: 00

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby RSchibler » Tue Feb 12, 2019 5:59 am

Talk about a trinity! You're going to learn so much just by basking in that wisdom. Superstars looked amazing - I bet your head is spinning with all you learned.

I'm hard at work beginning edits on my novel, but looking forward to more secrets. Hope everyone's quarter is going smoothly!
Trying to refute entropy with words.

Vol34: R, HM, R
Vol35: HM, R, R, HM
Vol36: R, pending

ALWAYS available for critiques. PM me.

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby disgruntledpeony » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:00 am

Wulf Moon wrote:News flash! Our lead instructors for the WotF workshop? David Farland, Tim Powers and Orson Scott Card. Am I dreaming? Pinch me!

I am so jealous, sir... you don't even know. XD I wouldn't have been able to attend this year anyhow, the twins are too young. Trying to wrangle them along with everything else would have been beyond hellish. But man, am I jealous...
If a person offend you, and you are in doubt as to whether it was intentional or not, do not resort to extreme measures; simply watch your chance and hit him with a brick. ~ Mark Twain

R, SF, SHM, SHM, SHM, F, R, HM, SHM, R, ?

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby AnikeKirsten » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:13 pm

Ugh, envy. Envy so hard. Glad you had a great time, Wulf! Looked like a riveting event. And did I mention envy? Much of it.
V.35: Q4 - SHM.
V.36: Q1 - HM.
V.36: Q2 - Pending.

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby Wulf Moon » Wed Feb 13, 2019 1:16 am

Glad you guys like the instructors for WotF. I thought it was a pretty cool lineup.

As for Superstars, it was wonderful, best writing seminar you will ever attend. It's all about the business of writing, how to make writing your profession, and how to be professional. I've been to the Nebulas, the World Fantasy Convention, Surrey International Writers Con, Westercon, Norwescon, Orycon--some of these many times. I can truly say there is not another event that comes close to Superstars for teaching the business of writing while fostering a positive, writer family atmosphere. I highly recommend it if you wish to find the power to advance to the next level. If interested, I have a discount code to help with the fees, PM me. And if your income is low, do what I did. Apply for the scholarship. They aren't given out lightly--excellent writers compete for their scholarships year after year. But that's why you're training, aren't you? To be the best. If you believe, then you know where you should go. I've just told you. Like me...find a way. Make it happen.

And for cryin' out loud, don't envy me or be jealous of me. : ) I'm one of you! Be glad one of you made it to WotF! You know why? Because we're all in this together. Next time, it will be your turn. And we all will be happy to see it happen. I've been trying to win WotF for twenty-five years. This was indeed my turn. I worked for it, and came close to winning several times. I just needed to work harder, and I did, and now I've won. And you are working hard for it. You took my challenge. You are reading and evaluating these posts. You too can win this. And we will all applaud your effort and success when you do.

My counsel is this. This is your team. View your challenge members as teammates. Work together as a unit to lift one another up. Share critiques among yourselves, find a sparring partner. You have people that accepted this challenge that are finalists. One is a published finalist. Do you know how close that is to winning? Yeah, those people know how to write a professional story. Team up with them. See if they will swap stories with you. We lift one another up. In Superstars, they teach that members are a tribe, and they mean it. Well, this is your tribe. You are all in this together. Help one another get over the wall.

Two of you have earned critiques from me this Q2. I begin working on those tomorrow. I wish I could do more, but the rest of you can help me.

By helping one another.

~Beastmaster Moon~
Wulf Moon
Q4 Vol 35 "Super-Duper Moongirl..."
Annual Critters Readers' Choice Award: First Place, "War Dog," Best SF&F Short Story of 2018
Gala Awards Ceremony Speech: https://youtu.be/9Vf1eeeKPRA Located at 1:09: 00

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby SCAFontaine » Wed Feb 13, 2019 10:04 pm

Sounds like you had a great time and made some amazing contacts.
Do you know, Wulf, if they do scholarships internationally?

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby SCAFontaine » Thu Feb 14, 2019 3:15 am

Wulf Moon wrote:My counsel is this. This is your team. View your challenge members as teammates. Work together as a unit to lift one another up. Share critiques among yourselves, find a sparring partner. You have people that accepted this challenge that are finalists. One is a published finalist. Do you know how close that is to winning? Yeah, those people know how to write a professional story. Team up with them. See if they will swap stories with you. We lift one another up. In Superstars, they teach that members are a tribe, and they mean it. Well, this is your tribe. You are all in this together. Help one another get over the wall.


On that note, if anyone is looking for a critique or sparring partner as Wulf put it, I'm game. Send me a pm.

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby Wulf Moon » Thu Feb 14, 2019 10:30 am

SCAFontaine wrote:Sounds like you had a great time and made some amazing contacts.
Do you know, Wulf, if they do scholarships internationally?


If you can get yourself to Denver and cover your lodging (many share rooms), I'm sure they'd consider your scholarship application. To be sure, go to their website and read the guidelines. It's not until late summer that they open the scholarship application process. The competition is stiff, but worth it if you get in. You will need a sample of your writing, and two reference letters, one for character, one for professional, I believe. Nebula winner Jerry Oltion of Analog fame wrote mine. And my editor Juli Rew at Third Flatiron Publishing. I was very pleased with what they told the committee. At the seminar, the selection committee gathered us scholarship winners up to have lunch with Kevin J. Anderson, a Superstars founder. I was so impressed that he took the time to get to know us, seeing how many duties he has at this event, plus he's got deals he's making with his WordFire publishing company while there as well. It's an amazing experience to be treated like family, even though it's your first year and you could easily feel like a total stranger. Small con, only 200, but everyone there is focused on career building and networking with like-minded souls. You will never find a better place to help you get to the next level. I say to everyone in this group that desires to have a professional publishing career, go to Superstars. Find a way. Like I did.

Registration isn't open for 2020 yet, just for alumni right now. If you do wish to enroll, now is when it's cheapest, and it jumps dramatically as the months go by. Be sure to ask me for a registration referral code before you sign up. I believe it gets you $100 off registration, which is great.

More secrets to come. But Superstars is a secret in itself. I knew I had to attend. And I found a way.

Keep fighting for your success. Make it so.

~Beastmaster Moon~
Wulf Moon
Q4 Vol 35 "Super-Duper Moongirl..."
Annual Critters Readers' Choice Award: First Place, "War Dog," Best SF&F Short Story of 2018
Gala Awards Ceremony Speech: https://youtu.be/9Vf1eeeKPRA Located at 1:09: 00

Wulf Moon
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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby Wulf Moon » Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:32 pm

And I just got the discount code that takes $100 off the registration for my friends that wish to attend Superstars Writing Seminar. Discount code is: WMOON

Why is this seminar above all others? Well, it's founders are David Farland, Kevin J. Anderson, Rebecca Moesta, Eric Flint (and more)--all judges in Writers of the Future. They know what they're talking about, and you spend a lot of time with them, both during, and after hours. They built a seminar around the business of writing, how to level up by learning from the best. if your desire is to make a career of writing, either indie, traditional, or hybrid, this is the place that brings in the experts. You learn from those that have made it, and you build a support group of writers that foster a positive, family atmosphere that goes far beyond the conference. They call themselves a Tribe, and they mean it. Everyone leans over backward to help one another succeed. You not only learn about craft and tricks of the trade--you make friendships for life.

If you have the means, invest in your future. Cut some years off your learning curve. And if you don't have the means, that's what the scholarship is for. I hope to see some of you there next year.

I'm going back.

Fortune favor the industrious.

~Beastmaster Moon~
Wulf Moon
Q4 Vol 35 "Super-Duper Moongirl..."
Annual Critters Readers' Choice Award: First Place, "War Dog," Best SF&F Short Story of 2018
Gala Awards Ceremony Speech: https://youtu.be/9Vf1eeeKPRA Located at 1:09: 00

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby Wulf Moon » Sat Feb 16, 2019 11:19 am

At long last, promise fulfilled. BEHOLD, the secret of Story!

Moon’s SUPER SECRET #20: Employ the 7 Point Plot model.

In Algis Budrys’ WRITING TO THE POINT, he reveals the best secret I ever learned, the 7 Point Plot. I actually heard him teach it when our writing group flew him out to Eugene, Oregon, to conduct his Sarah Jane workshop. I’ve also heard Dean Wesley Smith and Kris Rusch teach it at Surrey International Writers Con. They play parts of the movie DIE HARD as they teach the points to show you in visual format in how this story method works. I enjoyed both methods. And here it is, all seven points.

A STORY IS:
1. A character
2. In a setting
3. With a problem
4. Character must try to solve problem
5. Must fail (repeat try/fails three times)
6. Must reach a do or die CLIMAX where character succeeds (comedy) or fails (tragedy)
7. And life goes on with validation scene, also known as denouement.

So we’ve already talked about opening our stories with a character in a setting with a problem. We’ve talked about getting to that inciting incident early in the story, the real problem the protagonist must set out on an adventure to solve. What we haven’t talked about yet are try/fail cycles. These are the methods employed by your protagonist to conquer the problem. Why three tries, three fails? Well, if they solve it on the first try, it wasn’t much of a problem, was it? Even solving on the second try, the problem wasn’t very big and didn’t test them from within and without. But hit three, and just like in baseball, you’ve got three strikes or you’re out. Tension really builds when you watch a World Series baseball game and the batter has two strikes against them, the bases are loaded, and the game is in the final inning. Wrigley Field is broaster hot, the sun is in the batter’s eyes, and some lame hot dog holding fan in the stand behind the catcher just shouted that the batter might as well strike out since that’s all he’s done this season. To add insult to injury, the fans jeer him with chicken sounds, bawk, bawk, bawk. Shame engulfs the batter. And fear. Fear of failure. The pitcher winds up. The batter squints, salty sweat stinging his eyes. He cocks the bat higher, mutters a *dear god may this please connect.* The ball slices through the air like white lightning. The batter swings with power, seeing, not the ball itself, but this time a revelation, an epiphany. He sees *where* the ball will *be* when he swings his bat down in the stream of time. CRACK! The ball goes flying over the bandstand. The crowd roars. The batter heaves a sigh. This time, he didn’t fail his son watching on TV, he didn’t fail his team, and he didn’t fail his wife that had stood by him during the worst season of his life. He takes a victory lap around the bases, his girl waving at him from the rail, no shame on her face. This time, it’s pride. He knows there’s no one back at the town bars cursing his name this day. This day, he’s a hero. This day, his whole home town will come out and give him a parade.

So that’s story. Tension mounting up as the protagonist tries to solve the problem, and fails. Then mounts up again, and fails. Then takes that knowledge learned and figures out a better way, and fails. And then in a do or die climax, tries and succeeds, and learns something about himself or herself in the process. After, we see that life goes on for them. This ending is really just a new beginning with lessons learned. Validation that the protagonist returned to the tribe with respect and dignity (if it’s a comedy in the Greek sense of the term). Algis describes it through the last line you hear in THE LONE RANGER show. You see the Lone Ranger riding off into the sunset. Someone steps onto the dusty street from the town he just saved and says admiringly, “Who was that masked man?” Life goes on, but the world is better for the risks the Lone Ranger just took to save their world.

Look at your stories. Set up a format sheet with these numbered points. Leave spaces beneath each number. See if you can drop your story events into it. If you can’t, you likely just figured out why you’re not getting past an HM in the contest. And why those stories aren’t selling to pro markets elsewhere.

You’re in command. Fix the problem. Employ the 7 Point Plot. And start selling.

All the beast,

~Beastmaster Moon~
Wulf Moon
Q4 Vol 35 "Super-Duper Moongirl..."
Annual Critters Readers' Choice Award: First Place, "War Dog," Best SF&F Short Story of 2018
Gala Awards Ceremony Speech: https://youtu.be/9Vf1eeeKPRA Located at 1:09: 00

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby OldDarth » Sun Feb 17, 2019 3:55 pm

So as I recover from my knee surgery, it's just over 3 weeks since I had the surgery and am now just able to start reading again, it's been wonderful reading posts here for inspiration. With this recent post Wulf, I'm circling back to the question asked earlier on point 5 for short stories. 3 try/fail cycles apply to every story then? Regardless of length. ie working 3 try/fail cycles in a longer work is easier than doing so in a short story, is the goal. RIght?
My contest history:
V32Q3 - SHM/V33Q2 - R
'Every man is my superior in that I may learn from him.'

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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby Wulf Moon » Sun Feb 17, 2019 10:17 pm

OldDarth wrote:So as I recover from my knee surgery, it's just over 3 weeks since I had the surgery and am now just able to start reading again, it's been wonderful reading posts here for inspiration. With this recent post Wulf, I'm circling back to the question asked earlier on point 5 for short stories. 3 try/fail cycles apply to every story then? Regardless of length. ie working 3 try/fail cycles in a longer work is easier than doing so in a short story, is the goal. RIght?


Welcome back, Old Darth! I hope you recover well and are good as new in no time.

There's a reason for three try/fail cycles. If your protagonist solves the problem in one try, it wasn't a big enough problem, and it will fall flat for the reader. It should be hard. She should exert herself to her limits. And as she fails, we develop empathy for her, and also see her determination to succeed. Just like in real life, if you aren't failing, you aren't trying. Our protagonists mirror real life, and we want to see them succeed and learn and grow. But big problems aren't easy to solve, and going at them three times before figuring them out satisfies. And we do think in threes. Three strikes and you're out. Third time is the charm. Knock three times on the ceiling if you want me. : ) We view three tries as worthy effort, and it's definitely hardwired into storytelling.

Now, on a flash piece, 1000 words, you'll be doing good to get one try fail in there. You just don't have enough space to do it well. But all rules are meant to be broken, and if you're really good you can break them and no one will know. Again, that's really good, meaning you've had a lot of success with the rule before you see a way to break it effortlessly and with no one catching it. Funny thing, I didn't plot out three try/fails for my winning WotF story. I was writing too fast to make deadline to plot anything. But they're there. I did it subconsciously.

But I've been writing for a long time.

I should mention Volume 35 is up for preorder now at Galaxy Press or Amazon. If you preorder at Galaxy Press, you get a free Volume 25 for ebook! One of the best ways to win this contest is to read the current issue. It shows you what worked on Dave, and what he's looking for currently. You get to analyze, figure out what made a story win. Has everyone here preordered Volume 35? Because everyone in this challenge should tear into that book just as soon as it comes out. You need every edge you can get to win this thing.

Because somebody else is already on it.

You be that somebody else. You be the guy that wants this like nobody else.

~Beastmaster Moon~
Wulf Moon
Q4 Vol 35 "Super-Duper Moongirl..."
Annual Critters Readers' Choice Award: First Place, "War Dog," Best SF&F Short Story of 2018
Gala Awards Ceremony Speech: https://youtu.be/9Vf1eeeKPRA Located at 1:09: 00

thegirlintheglasses
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Re: Moon's SUPER SECRET Bonus Challenge! Vol. 36

Postby thegirlintheglasses » Mon Feb 18, 2019 9:53 pm

Wulf Moon wrote:
OldDarth wrote:So as I recover from my knee surgery, it's just over 3 weeks since I had the surgery and am now just able to start reading again, it's been wonderful reading posts here for inspiration. With this recent post Wulf, I'm circling back to the question asked earlier on point 5 for short stories. 3 try/fail cycles apply to every story then? Regardless of length. ie working 3 try/fail cycles in a longer work is easier than doing so in a short story, is the goal. RIght?


Welcome back, Old Darth! I hope you recover well and are good as new in no time.

There's a reason for three try/fail cycles. If your protagonist solves the problem in one try, it wasn't a big enough problem, and it will fall flat for the reader. It should be hard. She should exert herself to her limits. And as she fails, we develop empathy for her, and also see her determination to succeed. Just like in real life, if you aren't failing, you aren't trying. Our protagonists mirror real life, and we want to see them succeed and learn and grow. But big problems aren't easy to solve, and going at them three times before figuring them out satisfies. And we do think in threes. Three strikes and you're out. Third time is the charm. Knock three times on the ceiling if you want me. : ) We view three tries as worthy effort, and it's definitely hardwired into storytelling.

Now, on a flash piece, 1000 words, you'll be doing good to get one try fail in there. You just don't have enough space to do it well. But all rules are meant to be broken, and if you're really good you can break them and no one will know. Again, that's really good, meaning you've had a lot of success with the rule before you see a way to break it effortlessly and with no one catching it. Funny thing, I didn't plot out three try/fails for my winning WotF story. I was writing too fast to make deadline to plot anything. But they're there. I did it subconsciously.

But I've been writing for a long time.

I should mention Volume 35 is up for preorder now at Galaxy Press or Amazon. If you preorder at Galaxy Press, you get a free Volume 25 for ebook! One of the best ways to win this contest is to read the current issue. It shows you what worked on Dave, and what he's looking for currently. You get to analyze, figure out what made a story win. Has everyone here preordered Volume 35? Because everyone in this challenge should tear into that book just as soon as it comes out. You need every edge you can get to win this thing.

Because somebody else is already on it.

You be that somebody else. You be the guy that wants this like nobody else.

~Beastmaster Moon~


I've never been good at plotting things out before hand, because with most of my stories, I'm more of a discovery writer (Discovery in what goes wrong, I usually have an idea where I'm going). That being said, I think finding the heart of the story and infusing a more "proper" frame would yield less sporadic results (and fewer rewrites). Any recommendations for pantsers to more thoughtfully plot??? Favorite methods? I'll read another book ;)
Brittany Rainsdon
R-SHM-HM-R-HM-R-F-F

John Goodwin asked me to type up a blog post about writing my wotf entry around giving birth. Here it is!
https://www.writersofthefuture.com/birt ... -rainsdon/


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