1 - Thanks to unamaga for our community layout! ♥
2 - Membership in the community will be limited strictly to our writer and artist participants. Please do not try to join this comm if you are not a writer or artist. You are free to watch though! We'd love it if you did, in fact!
3 - If you link to this community - and zomg, please do, here's a linkback button you're free to use:
So, let's get down to business.
It has been pointed out that as a wee! fandom, we are sorely lacking in longer fics.
linaerys and I thought, hmm. We can totally help with this. And so can YOU.
Welcome to the Merlin Big Bang! Linaerys and I come to you having run/co-moderated sgabigbang and heroes_bigboom, so we feel like we can hopefully do right by Merlin.
But we can't do that without some awesome writers and artists coming to PLAY.
So, the FAQ:
What *is* the Merlin Big Bang Challenge?
Generally, Big Bangs pair artists and authors in a magnificent tag team of awesome creativity. Another Merlin Big Bang Challenge along these lines is winding up over at gydchallenge. However, we're anticipating a great deal of participation in this challenge, and frankly, we're not sure if there's enough artists to go around.
So for this year, we're going to have a kind of--eclectic mix of what comes out of this challenge. We hope it'll be a fantastic, invigorating experience for everyone, but we'll be honest. For the most part, writers will (probably) not be getting art. They'll get their story on a SHINY AWESOME WEBSITE and the fun atmosphere of this community, and the cool feeling of participating in (what will hopefully be) a huge challenge, but only the people who write 35,000 words or more will be guaranteed art.
The rest, we're going to figure out as we go along. It's our first year, so you're going to need to be patient with us as we use you as guinea pigs! *winsome smile*
How is it going to be run?
We want July to be this month of HUGE AWESOME FIC AND ART for the Merlin fandom, so to that end, we want to have four weeks of our Big Bang writers going live.
Week/Section One: 15,000 - 20,000 words = your story on our awesome website!
Week/Section Two: 20,001 - 30,000 words = your story on our awesome website!
Week/Section Three: 30,001 - 34,999 words = your story on our awesome website, and the possibility of art, depending on our number of artists!
Week/Section Four: 35,000 words and up = guaranteed Merlin Big Bang artwork, and also, your story on our awesome website!
We're hoping you'll all shoot for 35,000 words and up, but if you fall down on the way or you find out that hey, your plot isn't meant to last quite that long, we would love for you to submit your stories anyway. (So long as they're minimally 15,000 words.) So essentially, your reward is...participating in an AWESOME CHALLENGE.
If you KNOW you can't write 35,000 words, it's perfectly great to sign up and just see how long your story is at the end - after all, 15,000 words is nothing to knock! WE WANT YOU TOO.
So what kind of timeline are we talking about here?
Now - Feb. 28 = Writer and Artist Sign-Ups
March 15 = First Writer (Optional) Check-In
March 29 = Second Writer (Optional) Check-In, and you're highly encouraged to have your first 5,000 words done by this date!
Other Check-Ins: To Be Determined, be sure you're watching boxofmagic to figure out when we need to hear from you. We'll have at least one required check-in to see who's still with us.
June 10 - Section One, complete, final stories are due.
June 17 - Section Two and Section Three, complete, final stories are due.
June 24 - Section Four, complete drafts are due. Stories must have a beginning, a middle and an end. You must not make your artists cry from having to read this version, essentially.
June 25 - Artists will receive their assignments.
July 6 - Section Four, complete, final versions of your stories are due.
July 22 - Artist assignments are due on this date. Please try to have your submissions completed before this date, if at all possible.
So I need to plan my summer vacation days accordingly. What days do I need to take off work so I can read things?
July 8 - Section One goes live!
July 15 - Section Two goes live!
July 22 - Section Three goes live!
July 29 - Section Four goes live!
All of the writers from each section will go live at the same time, on the same day, so we'll essentially have four "big!" bangs in this challenge - an overwhelming onslaught of fic designed to make your eyes cry for rest, but your heart and soul cry out for more is our goal. *g*
Tell me more about what you're looking for.
1) Word count wise, stories need to be minimally 15,000 words to qualify for the Big Bang. If you want a guarantee of getting an artist matched up to your story, you need to write 35,000 words minimally.
2) Writers must adhere to coding guidelines as put forth by our website team. We'll tell you about them as soon as they are available, but you will need to go through your story and ensure that you have coded it properly.
We have a strict policy of not driving our webmasters blind here at boxofmagic.
3) You must have your story beta read. We will have a list of betas ready and willing to help you! Prospective betas, please note that I ask you not to beta for more than one (or possibly two) participants in this challenge.
4) Since this is Merlin's first year of existence, we're going to accept all pairings (or gen), and ratings. Crossovers are acceptable, so long as Merlin is the primary fandom in the story.
5) Prompts - again, because of this being such a young fandom, we're going to go easy on the prompts. Here's your options:
* Write a story based (however loosely) on one of the prompts from one of your fellow fandom members in our prompts post here.
* Write a story based (however loosely) on some theme, element or heck, a Merlin-style retelling of any myth or legend you can think of. Some source suggestions:
Britannia History - Myth, Legend and Folklore
The Best of Legends
Myths and Legends
* A spell goes horribly wrong. Or really right. Choose the Black Magic or the White Magic spell collection and find a spell that you can "work" with. (And no, you don't have to follow the spell exactly in the story. Make magic happen!)
Or hey, pick some other awesome cliches. svmadelyn kind of really loves those. FORCED TO BE MARRIED. STUCK IN A CAVE. WHOOPS, BODY-SWITCHING. And so on and so forth.
* Fine, so you hate all the prompts. Write something S1 canon compliant. Yes, anything.
* Fine, so you hate all the prompts. WRITE SOMETHING. ANYTHING. That's right. Disregard all the above prompt suggestions and write that Merlin shows up and freaks out Daniel Jackson epic you've been waiting for.
*dusts hands* And that should settle that. Yes, we are saying you can write anything you want.
6) Your story cannot have appeared anywhere on the net already. If you already have a thousand words of it up (it's a baby story!), we won't count that, but you must take it off the internet completely for the duration of the challenge.
7) Do not repost your story anywhere online until we tell you that you may in early August.
By all means, *link* to your story, but do not repost until that time.
8) Your story cannot end with "to be continued!"
On sequels: We'll allow them. But ONLY if the submitted story is completely stand-alone, and does not end with "to be continued."
If you want to leave room for a sequel in your new story here, that's fine too - but we basically need for this to stand alone on its own.
LET ME SIGN UP ALREADY.
I'm SO IN. How do I sign up as a writer, artist, beta reader, cheerleader or website guru/coder?
Want to write for this challenge? Go to that post!
Want to be an artist for this challenge? Go to that post!
Want to be a beta for this challenge? Go to that post!
Want to be a cheerleader for this challenge? Go to that post!
Want to help with creating the aforementioned website of AWESOME? PLEASE DO. Just comment in this post with your e-mail info and what sorts of website things you're willing/able to help with. We already have hosting covered.
If you have any questions, please keep them to this post, and not the other sign-up posts, so that linaerys and I can see them quickly. Please keep in mind that if you can't help with any of the above, you can always toss in some awesome story ideas.
THANK YOU FOR READING. BRING ON THE MAGIC.