Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Chronicle of fandom work

I think I've mentioned the idea of a fandom exchange here before, but having achieved something of a minor Crowning Moment of Awesome in my fandom life, I hope you don't mind if I take you through it again....

Fandom Gift Exchange Fest
When a participant signs up for one of these, he or she agrees to create a piece of fanfiction or fanart for someone else who has signed up for the fest. In return, the participant will also receive a piece of fanfiction or fanart from another participant. As the key word is EXCHANGE, participants who drop out or fail to turn in their pieces will not get any gifts.

To make sure that everyone gets a gift that they will like, each participant fills in a form that details what they like and don't like in fanfiction or fanart in that fandom. Usually the form will ask for preferred or vetoed pairings, some prompts, things that the participant likes and doesn't like, etc. The form thus serves as a sort of blueprint for the person who's creating a gift for them.

Many fests are anonymous and reveals are scheduled for after the time when the gifts have been posted, in order to increase anticipation, participation, and excitement. Also, I think it's really fun that way.

Some exchange fests are limited to one fandom only: every piece of fanfiction or fanart is keyed to characters/situations from that fandom. Crossovers are allowed as long as the main fandom is the featured exchange fest fandom.

On the other hand, some exchange fests are geared specifically towards crossovers of all kinds.

Fandom Big Bang Challenge
I'll take the definition here straight from the FAQs of the one I signed up for:

A big bang challenge is a collaborative project between authors and artists. Authors sign up to write long fanfiction within a predetermined time frame, and artists sign up to create art based on these stories.

The idea of the fandom big bang challenge apparently originated in a specific challenge that grew out of a specific branch of Harry Potter fandom.

Now back to the aforementioned very minor CMoA.

For all my years in various fandoms I'd never even heard of these terms until 2010. Since it turned out that people liked how I wrote in my current fandom, I decided, okay, to hell with it, never know till I try - and thus I signed up to write three stories: one for a one-fandom gift exchange fest, a crossover fandom gift exchange fest, and a fandom big bang challenge.

As of yesterday I've just turned in all the completed drafts to the three challenges.

And now I am keyed up for posting and reveals over the holidays.

You guys. Like I said. FIRST TIME EVER. And now I know I CAN DO THIS SORT OF THING. I took on three successive challenges and didn't flake out, didn't drop out, and didn't quit.

Each challenge had a specific word count: the first one I completed had to meet a minimum of 2000 words, the second a minimum of 1500 words, and the big bang had a minimum of 15,000 words. I'm happy to say I went over every one of those deadlines. [Wow, self, overcompensating much....]

I almost feel like I should have enough time to actually tackle National Novel Writing Month next, but, as I am grossly NOT prepared at all for that this year, I will wait until November 2011 for my next attempt. That will not stop me from mailing in a donation to the Office of Letters and Light, though!

Woo hoo!

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