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Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2277

The sound of the bugle echoed as another darling was laid to rest. wotf009

<plays taps>

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Posted : September 8, 2019 4:54 am
RETreasure
(@rschibler)
Silver Star Member
Posts: 743

My story is mostly finished. I've gotten some excellent help and critiques from those wiser than I and it's ready to go. Going to let it sit a few days, give it a final polish about the 20th, and submit. Good luck everyone!

V34: R,HM,R
V35: HM,R,R,HM
V36: R,HM,HM,SHM
V37: HM,SF,SHM,SHM
V38: F, SHM, P, P
Available for critiques - PM for availability.
www.rebeccaetreasure.com

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Posted : September 9, 2019 3:43 am
JVAshley
(@jvashley)
Silver Member
Posts: 263

I spent a week trying to think of an ingenious way to fix my overly predictable story ending. This weekend--in the wee hours of the morning while sleep hid from me--I came up with a twist ending.

I just finished editing the bullet point outline to fit the new bits in. Now, on to the rewrite. wotf042

Wish me luck.

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Posted : September 9, 2019 5:28 am
TimE
 TimE
(@time)
Silver Member
Posts: 338

I spent a week trying to think of an ingenious way to fix my overly predictable story ending. This weekend--in the wee hours of the morning while sleep hid from me--I came up with a twist ending.

I just finished editing the bullet point outline to fit the new bits in. Now, on to the rewrite. wotf042

Wish me luck.

I wish you the very best of luck.

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Posted : September 9, 2019 6:26 am
JVAshley
(@jvashley)
Silver Member
Posts: 263

I wish you the very best of luck.

Thank You, TimE

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Posted : September 9, 2019 2:13 pm
DoctorJest
(@doctorjest)
Silver Member
Posts: 361

I finally have a very rusty something-or-other that I am describing as my Draft 0.75. It's got holes in it, and some of the important elements from my draft 0.5 are missing and need transplanting in, but I'm happy -- I always feel pretty good once I reach this point of the story, where the skeleton is finally just about good enough to stand on its own feet.

Still needs a heck of a lot of flesh to let it actually dance about, but hey, beggars can't be choosers. I'll get to the muscles tomorrow.

R: 0 / HM: 8 / SHM: 4 / SF: 0 / F: 1
Currently in for Q3.V38 and Q4.V38 / Q1.V39 20% done on draft 1
Last result: SHM for Q2.V38
Revised SHM ('Ashwright') at PodCastle
Revised HM ('The Winds of the Mind') forthcoming at Abyss and Apex, ~October 2023

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Posted : September 9, 2019 6:20 pm
storysinger
(@storysinger)
Gold Member
Posts: 880

wotf042 Still working on my story. It keeps growing on me. wotf017

Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality-D.R.Sweeney
HM-V32/Q3
HM-V36/Q4
HM-V38/Q1

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Posted : September 11, 2019 9:14 am
DaneCurley
(@danecurley)
Advanced Member
Posts: 49

Nearly done. Story has an abrupt ending that I love but that definitely doesn't work. I often enjoy endings that I know are unmarketable. Maybe one day I'll release "Director's Cuts".

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Posted : September 11, 2019 4:10 pm
Peter_Glen
(@peter_glen)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 143

unmarketable

Yeah, that's the catch ... I think most of what I write falls into that category (and proud of it wotf013)

Edit: except for my Q4 that is definitely market friendly (me hopes)

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Posted : September 11, 2019 8:39 pm
JVAshley
(@jvashley)
Silver Member
Posts: 263

I spent the down time in a seminar yesterday marking up my Q4. wotf029 I think I have a clear direction, specific notes, and a real ending. Now, to finish the implementation.

Oh, yeah, and I am behind on the novel re-write. So, there's that. wotf005

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Posted : September 12, 2019 4:47 am
Disgruntled Peony
(@disgruntledpeony)
Gold Star Member
Posts: 1115

I'll be making the final push on my story in a few days. I think I'm going take a break from the contest after this quarter, though. I've been feeling the urge to write novels more and more over the course of the last year, and I can't do that and write short stories at the same time. (Literally can't. My brain refuses to focus on multiple writing projects at once for some reason.)

If you are in difficulties with a book, try the element of surprise: attack it at an hour when it isn't expecting it. ~ H.G. Wells
R, SF, SHM, SHM, SHM, F, R, HM, SHM, R, HM, R, F, SHM, SHM, SHM, SF, SHM, 1st Place (Q2 V38)
Ticknor Tales

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Posted : September 13, 2019 12:27 am
storysinger
(@storysinger)
Gold Member
Posts: 880

But how will you ever catch Preston if you take a quarter off. I'd be willing to bet you could write a story in 1 week or less at least once a quarter.

Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality-D.R.Sweeney
HM-V32/Q3
HM-V36/Q4
HM-V38/Q1

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Posted : September 13, 2019 2:15 am
DoctorJest
(@doctorjest)
Silver Member
Posts: 361

I'm pivoting to an alternate story that I'm going to revise, one I've not submitted here before. I really like the story I've been working on, but don't think I can fully do it justice in the time I have left for this quarter. So I'm going to punt it to Q1 of v37 instead, and polish this other piece in its place for Q4.

R: 0 / HM: 8 / SHM: 4 / SF: 0 / F: 1
Currently in for Q3.V38 and Q4.V38 / Q1.V39 20% done on draft 1
Last result: SHM for Q2.V38
Revised SHM ('Ashwright') at PodCastle
Revised HM ('The Winds of the Mind') forthcoming at Abyss and Apex, ~October 2023

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Posted : September 14, 2019 4:29 am
JVAshley
(@jvashley)
Silver Member
Posts: 263

I had a great idea Thursday for a story. YEAH!!!!
But...I told myself not to follow the sparkly. I have to finish edits of the story I am in the middle of. I have given myself until Tuesday to get it out to beta readers.

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Posted : September 14, 2019 4:44 am
storysinger
(@storysinger)
Gold Member
Posts: 880

I should have been writing a space pirate story as I sit here wearing my eyepatch. Arrgg.

Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality-D.R.Sweeney
HM-V32/Q3
HM-V36/Q4
HM-V38/Q1

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Posted : September 14, 2019 6:45 am
Helge Mahrt
(@helge-mahrt)
Bronze Member
Posts: 69

I have my story plotted out but I can’t find the motivation to start writing, which makes me suspect that there’s something off with the outline. And maybe I lost the habit of writing daily wotf005

R, HM, R
http://www.helgemahrt.com
Sky High, my YA/SciFi novel

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Posted : September 14, 2019 7:22 am
czing
(@czing)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 199

I'll be making the final push on my story in a few days. I think I'm going take a break from the contest after this quarter, though. I've been feeling the urge to write novels more and more over the course of the last year, and I can't do that and write short stories at the same time. (Literally can't. My brain refuses to focus on multiple writing projects at once for some reason.)

Definitely follow what speaks to you. But maybe you could work on a novel and write a side story from that novel's world for your contest entry? It could be a way to develop your world (maybe even your characters if you don't have side or off screen folks populate the short story). Or take time off from the contest - definitely a valid choice too. Just thought I'd throw this out there since I often end up writing short stories set in the world of most of my novels - whether they end up being stories that stand alone or not is another question but I generally enjoy the insights they give me into my world (plus hey, publish them after your novel is out even if they don't win the contest).

v36 Q1, Q3 - HM; Q4 - R
v37 Q1 - R; Q2 - SHM; Q4 - HM
v38 Q1 - HM; Q2 -SHM; Q3 - P

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Posted : September 14, 2019 12:11 pm
terbium
(@terbium_1617100966)
New Member
Posts: 1

I was taking a break from WOTF, trying to figure out a new story since I've submitted the same story about a half dozen times or so now. But, then I read Preston Dennett's "24 Things" piece that, coupled with Joni's email about how some people just enter the same story again, sometimes with slight edits, made me decide to re-submit the same story yet again. Each quarter I tweak it slightly, trying to adhere to guidelines suggested by the Judges, but it still doesn't even make HM. Each submission has been only subtly different, and the last version was finally "it" - the story as it was meant to be. But, the current ending is dark and a bit depressing. So, one more shot with this story before I give up and go with a completely different story. This time, the ending is going to be different and I'm going to fully polish those last ten pages. Anyone else out there like I am? I make the first 3/4 or so of a story shine, meticulously crafting every word and description, but then I tend to peter out at the end, resulting in a lackluster ending. What a horrible way to destroy a nice story!

wotf022 http://www.danieldelill.com wotf024 wotf006

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Posted : September 16, 2019 2:00 am
DaneCurley
(@danecurley)
Advanced Member
Posts: 49

Q3v36 was my first entry. Q4v36 is my second. May great stories win.

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Posted : September 16, 2019 2:44 am
WriterGirl0426
(@writergirl0426)
Bronze Member
Posts: 64

Anyone else out there like I am? I make the first 3/4 or so of a story shine, meticulously crafting every word and description, but then I tend to peter out at the end, resulting in a lackluster ending. What a horrible way to destroy a nice story!

While making the first 3/4 shine is wonderful, I imagine it must be frustrating to feel as though your endings don't wrap the way you want, or shine as much as the rest. Out of curiosity, do you plot out or outline your story? What kind of story and/or character arc's do you do?

Don't get me wrong - I'm a total pantser. Still, I found if I don't at least have some idea of the growth or change I want to see in the plot or character, I get lost in the weeds somewhere in between.

--Tracy

Tracy

V34 Q3: R
V34 Q4: R
V35 Q1: R
V36 Q1: SHM
V36 Q2: SEMI-FINALIST!!!
V36 Q3: HM
V36 Q4: SHM
V37 Q1: SHM

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Posted : September 16, 2019 6:20 am
Henckel
(@henckel)
Silver Member
Posts: 417

...the current ending is dark and a bit depressing... ...Anyone else out there like I am? ...

.

It blows my mind when I look back on every story I've ever written. I find myself using the same format: making the distinction between character goal and desire. In each of my stories, my MCs consistently fail to achieve their goals, but succeed in fulfilling their desires.

If you're not familiar with the distinction, think about it like this. If my desire is to quince my thirst, my goal might be to get a glass of water. While I might fail at obtaining my glass of water, I still may fulfil my desire by sucking down a cold Dr Pepper.

Anyway, think about your story's ending in these terms. It helps to open the possibilities of success to positive story endings even in the face of what appear to be failure.

(2014) V31 Q1 – R
(2018) V35 Q3 – HM
(2019) V36 Q3 – HM
(2019) V36 Q4 – SHM
(2020) V37 Q1 – R
(2020) V37 Q2 – HM
(2020) V37 Q3 – SHM
(2020) V37 Q4 – Finalist
(2021) V38 Q1 – Semi-finalist
(2021) V38 Q2 – SHM
(2021) V38 Q3 – tba

Coolest Achievements
(2019) Published in Escape Anthology
(2020) Published in Sci-Fi Lampoon
(2020) V37 Q4 – Finalist
(2020) Dream Foundry - Shortlisted
(2021) Mike Resnick Memorial Award - 3rd Place winner!!! (to be published)

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Posted : September 16, 2019 6:27 am
DoctorJest
(@doctorjest)
Silver Member
Posts: 361

Of my six results to date, broadly speaking, two saw the hero succeed in goal and flunk the desire; two saw them succeed in goal and desire both; and two (both the silvers) saw them flunk both. I'll not comment on the pending ones, save to note that I actually don't yet have a story lined up for this contest where the protagonist fails goal but reaches desire. I find that interesting now that it comes up, and it's something I'll be thinking about as a concept to play around with.

R: 0 / HM: 8 / SHM: 4 / SF: 0 / F: 1
Currently in for Q3.V38 and Q4.V38 / Q1.V39 20% done on draft 1
Last result: SHM for Q2.V38
Revised SHM ('Ashwright') at PodCastle
Revised HM ('The Winds of the Mind') forthcoming at Abyss and Apex, ~October 2023

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Posted : September 16, 2019 6:46 am
MichaelKingswood
(@michaelkingswood)
Bronze Member
Posts: 53

But how will you ever catch Preston if you take a quarter off. I'd be willing to bet you could write a story in 1 week or less at least once a quarter.

Yes. Yes you can. It's easier than you'd think, once you get into the story-a-week groove. It's like having an appointment you can't miss.

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Posted : September 16, 2019 10:01 am
MichaelKingswood
(@michaelkingswood)
Bronze Member
Posts: 53

I should have been writing a space pirate story as I sit here wearing my eyepatch. Arrgg.

Sweet.

Pirates good.

Space Pirates better.

wotf009

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Posted : September 16, 2019 10:02 am
DaneCurley
(@danecurley)
Advanced Member
Posts: 49

I suppose I stand alone in my veto of the Space Pirates idea.

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Posted : September 16, 2019 10:37 am
Disgruntled Peony
(@disgruntledpeony)
Gold Star Member
Posts: 1115

But how will you ever catch Preston if you take a quarter off. I'd be willing to bet you could write a story in 1 week or less at least once a quarter.

Yes. Yes you can. It's easier than you'd think, once you get into the story-a-week groove. It's like having an appointment you can't miss.

The thing is, I'd rather write a chapter a week right now. (Or two, perhaps.) Honestly, truly. If that changes, you guys will be the first to know, but I've been debating on this plan since the boys were born and I honestly think it's what I need to do.

If you are in difficulties with a book, try the element of surprise: attack it at an hour when it isn't expecting it. ~ H.G. Wells
R, SF, SHM, SHM, SHM, F, R, HM, SHM, R, HM, R, F, SHM, SHM, SHM, SF, SHM, 1st Place (Q2 V38)
Ticknor Tales

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Posted : September 16, 2019 11:37 am
Retropianoplayer
(@retropianoplayer)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 231

This may sound like a completely ludicrous idea, but I ENJOY doing it, so I guess I'm good – before I craft a story, any story, I always think first of HOW IT ENDS. I'll first try for the HOLY MOLY, I NEVER SAW THAT COMING approach. Next, for the GET OUT THE BOX OF KLEENEX AND START CRYING ending. If neither of those work, I go for the "hero wins by losing, or loses by winning" resolution.

Whether my story wins any certificate or not, whether it's thrown in the slush pile or not, I WILL NOT write a short story which I cannot envision as a cinematic experience.

I also enjoy listening to great musical themes before and after each writing session. My absolute favorite soundtrack is from musical genius and wonderful composer Howard Lubin for his unique, haunting ending theme to a science fiction show which premiered on September 16th, 1963 by the name of THE OUTER LIMITS. If anyone is interested, you can find it on You Tube under The Outer Limits Season 2 End Theme Composed By Howard Lubin.

Tastes in music vary, so whatever floats your boat should relax you during any creative session.

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Posted : September 16, 2019 2:23 pm
storysinger
(@storysinger)
Gold Member
Posts: 880

Lately I seem to put a lot of thinking into the next writing session. By the time I take a seat I have a good idea where the story is going and I get a lot done. I'm far enough along with my Q4 that I have to bring it to a satisfying ending.

Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality-D.R.Sweeney
HM-V32/Q3
HM-V36/Q4
HM-V38/Q1

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Posted : September 17, 2019 3:11 am
JVAshley
(@jvashley)
Silver Member
Posts: 263

I also enjoy listening to great musical themes before and after each writing session. My absolute favorite soundtrack is from musical genius and wonderful composer Howard Lubin for his unique, haunting ending theme to a science fiction show which premiered on September 16th, 1963 by the name of THE OUTER LIMITS. If anyone is interested, you can find it on You Tube under The Outer Limits Season 2 End Theme Composed By Howard Lubin.

Thanks for the suggestion. I will try it out.

I have my Q4 marked up and have begun the edits, but they are going slow. Plus, I have the guilt of leaving my novel alone. I wanted it to be finished by the end of the summer, and I am only a little over halfway through with its edits.

But charge forth, we must!  fistinair

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Posted : September 17, 2019 8:21 am
Retropianoplayer
(@retropianoplayer)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 231

JV Ashley, you're welcome.

I didn't know you were writing a novel. You might want to scope out THE FIRST FIFTY PAGES by Jeff Gerke. It's on Amazon.

As far as music listening appreciation, if you write fantasy, you might check out SLEEPSONG - Lullaby from a Secret Garden, and fantasy/horror, I'd suggest COME, LITTLE CHILDREN. Both are easily found on You Tube.

Best of luck with the novel and your Q4.

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Posted : September 17, 2019 9:40 am
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