1. In Memory of LAJ_FETT: Please share your remembrances and condolences HERE

~*~Favorites of FanFic Festival Social and Questions Thread~*~ Survey! We want YOUR opinions

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Writing Resource' started by mavjade , Jan 22, 2019.

  1. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 8

    Aug 31, 2004
    To mavjade & Briannakin:

    Thank you for hosting this. I do feel a Favorites Festival is less labor-intensive than a full-blown awards.


    I found the "epic, short story, etc." ones easier as well as "alternate universe, canon-compliant."

    The timeline categories were harder due to overlap and filtering issues: e.g., was the story tagged a certain way?

    Characters and Relationships

    I like the way these categories were set out. I'd keep these.

    I totally enjoyed, as with the awards, the author and reviewer categories. It's a chance to celebrate an overall level of quality. [face_love] =D=

    Drop-off of participation

    Besides perhaps the timing, maybe having more categories per week?

    The anonymity is a great option to include for those who feel inclined to share their favorites that way.
    Kahara, mavjade , AzureAngel2 and 4 others like this.
  2. Findswoman

    Findswoman Fanfic and Pancakes and Waffles Mod (in Pink) star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Feb 27, 2014
    First of all, hearty kudos and a HUGE THANK YOU to @Briannakin and @mavjade for all you did in organizing and facilitating this festival, and for all you do to make this place the cool, fun, easygoing community of fanwriters that it is. =D= =D= =D=

    Festival format in general. So, on the whole, I really enjoyed this festival format! I admit that I had a few misgivings about it at first, just because the format was so very different from what we’ve done in previous years. But it turned out to be a really fun, low-pressure way to celebrate our local fanfic talents, and I’m especially glad to hear that it minimized the drama on your (the mods’) end—I initially feared the public posting format would lead to just the opposite.

    Categories. I was happy with the variety and organization of categories for the most part and have just a couple comments there. Just personally, I was a bit bewildered by some of “fun categories” like “story that stuck with you,” “story that doesn’t fit in a category,” etc., many of which just seemed overly... open-ended, I guess? I personally would have preferred more traditional, basic genre categories instead (“best humor,” “best romance,” etc.)—I know the “best in its genre” category was meant to account for some of that, but I still think the specific categories are helpful to have.

    Pretty much all the other categories seemed to work well, though, and I’d be fine with keeping them as they are. Though I wonder about the possibility of trying some different orderings: perhaps “break up” some of more the heavy-duty era- or length-based categories by placing things like genre, character, or relationship in between (those tend to feel a little easier, at least to me, for some reason—though that’s possibly another discussion).

    Dropoff in participation. I wonder if some of that might have had to do just with how long the festival lasted overall. Looking at the thread again, things ran from February 17 to June 2, which is fifteen weeks and just shy of four months. More categories per week might help with that; for example, covering all the style or character categories in one week instead of splitting them across tow or more (and I think it’s probably fine for the number of categories to vary from week to week, e.g., for one week to have three while the next has five, etc.). In general, aiming for two months max might be a good rule of thumb, and then distributing the categories more or less evenly over that. (A two-month festival starting in February or so would also help obviate the problem of the busyness that tends to set in around May-June.)

    I’d be curious to hear from folks who didn’t participate, or who participated only a little bit, about why they didn’t. Not to put them on the spot or throw them under the bus in any way; just could be useful to know some of the reasons “from the horse’s mouth,” as it were.

    Anonymous submission. I think the idea of all-anonymous submission (either to a sock or the mods/hosts), with a combined mod announcement of all the week’s favorites at the end of the week, could definitely be worth trying—though this year’s format of being able to choose either public or private submission ended up feeling perfectly fine to me, too. Would be curious to hear what others think.

    And that should be pretty much it for me for now (gosh, isn’t it enough? :p ). Thanks again to our mods and to all who took part, and I’m also personally very grateful and humbled for the nominations I received—you all are wonderful. @};-
  3. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Force Ghost star 5

    Dec 21, 2016
    In answer to this, honestly, I just got lazy. Posting the links was more work than I wanted to do. Bad excuse, I know. But it's the truth.
  4. pronker

    pronker Force Ghost star 4

    Jan 28, 2007
    Thanks to Briannakin and mavjade for hosting the Favourites. ;)

    I like coming here because anything to do with acknowledging ficcage makes me feel warm and fuzzy.
    As for next time, more categories per week sounds usable.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2019
  5. Tarsier

    Tarsier Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jul 31, 2005
    First off, I think the festival is a really cool idea and seems like it went very well, so kudos to everyone involved! [face_party] I'm glad to hear it was less work and it seems like a lot of stories got acknowledged (which I think should always be the goal of the awards).

    Thoughts on future festivals: To start off I should say I didn't participate in this year's event at all, except for peeking in occasionally. (I've been busy in real life, but also my muse is just much more interested in NSWFF right now.) So take my thoughts for what they are worth, which may very well be nothing.

    Time: The festival took place over about four months, I think? That just seems way too long. I don't think it's possible to keep any audience excited about anything for that length of time. I would keep it at two weeks, maybe a month at the most. I understand trying to spread out the fun, but I'm guessing participation dropped off due to both natural loss of momentum over time and procrastination ("The categories I want to nominate in aren't going to be up for two months, I'll work on later." Two months later.... "Oh, the awards are still going on. Wasn't I thinking about nominating something? Eh, it's probably too late and I don't really remember what I was going to do anyway...")

    Categories: There were a lot. Perhaps an overwhelming number. And I would guess keeping track of categories is what creates the most work for the hosts. I would propose eliminating categories. Instead, readers simply share their favorite stories, and provide a short description or explanation as to why the story is their favorite. So Reader 1 shares three stories they particularly enjoyed. Then Reader 2. Then Reader 3. And so on. The same stories can be shared more than once, but if the same story keeps coming up, readers are encouraged to find a different story to share. I would say each reader can share up to three stories a day, and up to maybe seven stories total over the two weeks. Categories could be worked in to the explanation, if desired: "I love Story X because of the way Luke and Mara's relationship is portrayed." "Story Y is a favorite because John Doe is such a great original character."

    Index: I love indexes. I think they are important to for helping readers finds stories, especially after the festival is over. I think a running index would be especially important under my proposal, so readers can see if their favorites are already on the list. The index could be alphabetical, but also by category (to a limited extent) to help readers find new stories. I wouldn't think it would be too much work to copy and paste stories into the index as they are shared, I even volunteer to be indexer.

    Anonymous Submissions: Seems like they worked really well, I would do them the same way going forward.
  6. Kahara

    Kahara Chosen One star 4

    Mar 3, 2001
    Okay, I'll probably come back and comment more later but should probably leave something now since it's been a while since the survey was posted. I did like this festival style of awards and it seems like a good fit for the general activity level of the boards these days. The really extended time length did kind of lead me to procrastinate, but that may just be me. :p But I do think that a shorter time as suggested by others would be a good idea.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2019
  7. Raissa Baiard

    Raissa Baiard Chosen One star 4

    Nov 22, 1999
    Sorry for the lateness of my reply; RL has been busy now that we're on summer schedule.

    Categories: I agree with @Findswoman that I missed the genre categories (humor, romance, drama, adventure). I found myself making a mental list of stories along genre lines towards the end of 2018 ("this would be a good story for Best Romance"), so I was a little bit at loose ends when I didn't have those categories anymore :p. Maybe it comes from being a librarian, but it's an easy way for me to group stories together. I also found some of the more open-ended categories harder to choose stories for because they weren't easy for me to decide what the definition of a story that really stuck with you or one that deserves to be read by more people was, because I felt that all of the stories that I read could qualify for those in some way.

    Length: The Festival did seem to go on a little too long. Like @Tarsier noted, it's hard to keep enthusiasm and participation up for something that lasts a couple months. I wonder if having people submit their favorites in one or two large batches, similar to the way nominations and voting were done would work? Then the volunteers/mods could announce them over the course of a week or two?

    Anonymous Submissions: I'm up in the air about this. While I didn't necessarily mind seeing who nominated what or having people see what I nominated, it felt a bit awkward at times, particularly when it came to doing thanks. Knowing who nominated me, I felt a bit strange saying "I'd like to thank everyone..." but it would have felt really weird to say "Thanks for nominating me, JaneDoe and JennyReader! I appreciate it!" in public. This was also a lot of the reason I didn't do acceptance skits this year; without the Awards format, the characters really wouldn't have been accepting accepting anything, and again, it just felt kind of awkward having a general thank you skit in this situation.

    Random thoughts: Perhaps having some more promotion for the Festival would help in the future. With Awards, there's usually a lead in period where there's a colorful banner about nominations starting and then another for voting. Maybe doing something similar would help raise awareness and enthusiasm? (And I would be more than happy to put together the banners again, if you think that would be helpful.)
    AzureAngel2, Kahara, Tarsier and 3 others like this.
  8. Findswoman

    Findswoman Fanfic and Pancakes and Waffles Mod (in Pink) star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Feb 27, 2014
    Hi mods and co.—just curious how things are coming along with the indexing and such, and if there’s any way we can be of help. Looking forward to seeing it whenever it’s done. :)
  9. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    I'm dealing with health issues and a dissertation and Mav is pretty busy with work so please don't make us feel guilty about not being able to work on it. I am planning on sitting down sometime this weekend and trying to get it done. It's just easier for us not to try and accept help at this point because we have a system going on and we are almost done.
    Ewok Poet and Findswoman like this.
  10. Findswoman

    Findswoman Fanfic and Pancakes and Waffles Mod (in Pink) star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Feb 27, 2014
    I’m sorry to hear about your health issues, and I hope all will be better soon and that the dissertation is going well. My intention was in no wise to make either of you feel guilty, just to check in on how things were going in a casual way. And now I know, so thank you. @};-
    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha likes this.
  11. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    No worries. I was completely intending to sit down and work on it this weekend. June was just a mess of DRL and I have so far been spending most of July playing catch up with my dissertation, Some things just fall to the bottom of the list and indexing this has been one of it.
    pronker and Findswoman like this.
  12. Ewok Poet

    Ewok Poet Force Ghost star 6

    Jul 31, 2014
    And here comes the slowpoke who will need hours to figure out what just happened. But yeah, a THING HAPPENED and I believe I figured out how it worked, so let's fill this survey out, shall we?

    Please, take care of yourself, this can wait! A like of support, of course.

    Festival format in general.
    I wasn't a part of it, but it was fun. I still prefer spontaneous award skits in the actual thread, though, because it makes things easier to follow. One can make use of skits with the new format, too.

    All cool, glad to see the reviewer category back and I adore the stories that don't fit category. That's a perfect idea - sometimes stories don't fit into anything even remotely common, but they still need to be recognised. I have just read the weirdest thing in all existing universes because I saw it listed under that category.

    Yes, to both. Please. Indexes would make it easier to catch up (one for this year's results, also - in fact, I could make it, let me be useful) and as I pointed above and as Tarsier said, that could lead people to some unexpected discoveries.

    And I really, really don't like the idea of seeing who did or who didn't nominate me. For people with fragile self-esteem and various headshrink-worthy issues, that would've been pretty hard to process during the process itself. This way it's easier, but still...scary stuff!


    Hello to my secret superfan, whoever you are. I love you, too! [face_love][face_monkey]

    Lemme guess..."you know"? [face_laugh]
  13. Briannakin

    Briannakin Former Manager star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Feb 25, 2010
    The index is now up and sticked. It will remain sticked for the rest of 2019.