Cover for electronic post?

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fireseekera47
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Cover for electronic post?

Postby fireseekera47 » Sun Feb 02, 2014 4:05 pm

I have a couple of questions for inserting a story electronically...
1. Will it be okay if I had a cover made in the story if I post it electronically ( contest never said wotf017 )
2. Is the title ''Walking with Dragons'' Title of my story) considered 'coping Walking with Dinosaurs'?

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Martin L. Shoemaker
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Re: Cover for electronic post?

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Sun Feb 02, 2014 4:46 pm

fireseekera47 wrote:I have a couple of questions for inserting a story electronically...
1. Will it be okay if I had a cover made in the story if I post it electronically ( contest never said wotf017 )


I would recommend against it. They want stories, not stories with art. Art is the other half of the contest. If your story wins, it will be illustrated by one of the winning artists.

2. Is the title ''Walking with Dragons'' Title of my story) considered 'coping Walking with Dinosaurs'?


Not at all! Titles cannot be copyrighted (and only rarely can even be trademarked), so you could even call it "Walking with Dinosaurs" and be legally OK. Mind you, no publisher (including the contest) would actually want to USE the title of a well-known work, but that's because they don't want to confuse and annoy the audience. But you could do it.

As for titles which are allusions to other works -- i.e., "Walking with Dragons" alludes to "Walking with Dragons" -- that can sometimes be very effective. It sets a tone in the reader's mind, and if you can build on that, the reader will find it very clever.
Martin L. Shoemaker
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fireseekera47
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Re: Cover for electronic post?

Postby fireseekera47 » Sun Feb 02, 2014 5:05 pm

Ah.... alright... thanks for the opinion but I was confused with what you meant by alluding other titles... can you explain that to me? wotf021

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Martin L. Shoemaker
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Re: Cover for electronic post?

Postby Martin L. Shoemaker » Sun Feb 02, 2014 5:30 pm

fireseekera47 wrote:Ah.... alright... thanks for the opinion but I was confused with what you meant by alluding other titles... can you explain that to me? wotf021


If your title is similar, and it makes the reader think of the other title, that's an allusion. If you ignore that allusion entirely, then it makes the reader feel cheated; but if you use that allusion, then the reader feels clever AND a little more comfortable with your story.

For example, with your title... "Walking with Dinosaurs" was a "nature documentary" where all the animals (dinosaurs) were long dead and had to be simulated with computer animation. The important point is it was a nature documentary about dinosaurs.

Now suppose your story, "Walking with Dragons", is about a bunch of books that walk and talk, and all the books about dragons band together to take over the library, and the other books have to fight a war against them. There your title is at best a weak allusion. The story has no similarity to the documentary. I don't think anyone would hold it against you, but you wouldn't get much benefit from it.

Now suppose instead your story is about a documentary film crew who finds a portal to a world where dragons exist, and they travel through the portal to make a nature documentary about dragons. Now your allusion is very strong. The reader who knows the original documentary says, "Hey, cool, I get it!" They start filling in details in their heads. Simply by using a carefully chosen allusion, you make the reader more comfortable with your story.

Your idea may be like one of these, or different. Your title can work in either case. An allusion is only a weak tool anyway, since not everybody knows the original. But if you have a really famous allusion, you should probably avoid it. I don't care how appropriate "Star Warriors" is as a title, you're just going to put off readers with it.

A separate note about titles here on the forum: you're using a pseudonym here, so it's OK that you mentioned your story title. I'm using my real name, so I should NEVER do that. The contest is supposed to be anonymous; and on rare occasions, one of the judges reads these posts. I would hate to have a potentially winning story get disqualified because I accidentally broke anonymity. It's OK that you used your title here, but I would be careful not to give too many details in the future.

I hope this helps, and good luck! It's good to have you here!
Martin L. Shoemaker
F:1V28,1V29
SF:4V28
HM:2/3V28,2/3/4V29,1/2/3V30
3rd:1V31

WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE! WRITE!
SUBMIT! SUBMIT! SUBMIT! SUBMIT! SUBMIT!
REPEAT! REPEAT! REPEAT! REPEAT! REPEAT!
Patience. Patience. Patience. Patience. Patience.
NNiNN

george nik.
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Re: Cover for electronic post?

Postby george nik. » Tue Feb 04, 2014 1:12 pm

fireseekera47 wrote:2. Is the title ''Walking with Dragons'' Title of my story) considered 'coping Walking with Dinosaurs'?


Anyway, I'd strongly suggest that you change this story title, for this contest anyway. Maybe using a pseudonym at the forum protects your anonymity for now -- but if you stick with the forum, eventually you might make a signature with your real name, maybe a link to your blog, or your published stories if you have some, etc. You wouldn't want to remain anonymous forever. So it would be better if your posts include no mention of details of your stories, like Martin said, and especially not the titles!
George Nikolopoulos
WOTF: 1 SF, 3 HM
Fiction (EN): 34 stories sold, 25 published
Fiction (GR): c.10 stories published & a children’s novel
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fireseekera47
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Joined: Sun Feb 02, 2014 3:49 pm

Re: Cover for electronic post?

Postby fireseekera47 » Tue Feb 04, 2014 3:40 pm

alright.... Thanks for informing me...


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