Hello Scribophiles! We’ve got some good stuff to share with you, so let’s get cracking! (And before we start, if the site is looking a little funky for you, press ctrl+F5 (or apple+F5) on your keyboard right now, before you read any more! We mean it!)
Announcing the Winners of the Computer Love Contest
We’re not gonna lie, we were really excited to sit down and start reading the entries for last month’s contest—and we weren’t disappointed. The myriad of ways that the entries interpreted the theme were very impressive. We got androids of different shapes and sizes, sexy spaceships, deadly nano-robots, clubhouse projects, and even a few jealous houses! We had some raunchy entries, some philosophical entries, some platonic entries, and even some time travel. This contest truly ran the gamut of creativity.
We really couldn’t have asked for more intriguing and well-written entries. But of course, we have to pick some winners, so without further ado, here they are:
1st place, $100 Amazon.com gift card: The Life and Death of a Battery, by Cameobug
This meditative piece explores love in a very imaginative way. Great pacing and imagery round out this truly excellent bit of writing.
2nd place, $50 Amazon.com gift card: The Witch’s Husband, by LJLongo
To be honest, the introduction to this piece left our heads spinning. But by the end, everything came together and we realized that we’d finished reading such a uniquely creative interpretation of the theme that we just had to recognize it.
3rd place: Patience by April French
An incredibly tender love story with excellent characterization and dialog. The quiet emotional power of this piece really stuck with us, and April managed to make the characters extremely believable and relatable in just 3000 words.
Folks, this was a very tough choice. Very close in the running were Her by Mechele Mede, Home Improvement by Adam Sifre, and Computer Love by Wittman Ah Sing. This may have just been the closest contest to date, but we wouldn’t have it any other way. Join us in congratulating the winners (write on their scratchpads, send them a private message, send them a gift, or hell, send them some snail mail), and let’s see more of that great writing in November!
And Introducing the NaNoWriMo ’09 Contest
Since those of you braver writers out there will be attempting NaNoWriMo this year, we figured you’d be a little too preoccupied to write anything significant for our next contest. So instead, we decided to take advantage of what you’ll already be writing and make the theme of our next contest fit with NaNoWriMo.
Submit the first chapter of the novel you’re writing for NaNoWriMo before November 30 to try your hand at winning a $50 or $25 Amazon.com gift card. We know it may not be the best sample of your writing prowess (it’s hard to proofread when you’ve got 40,000 words left to write), but it’ll be a great way to make sure you start your novel right. Read more about the contest here, and good luck in finishing your novel!
Welcome to Justin and Ervin, our new Scribo-bloggers
Kathryn Vercillo has sadly had to step down from her venerable post as Scribophile blogger extraordinaire, but in her place we’re excited to welcome Justin C. Key and Ervin Anderson. They’ll be joining Brandon in keeping your writing and literature blogging needs comfortably sated. You can already read Justin’s post on a great new way to beat writer’s block, and Ervin’s first post will be coming up soon.
Join us in welcoming Justin and Ervin!
And Things Look a Little Different…
We’ve got a lot of site updates to share with you! This round of updates is a lot of smaller things, lots of bug fixes, and some small changes. You’ve already noticed that we’ve changed our front page a little bit. We’ve removed the “Active Authors” and “Writing Spotlight” sections in favor of a bigger “Blog” section, and we’ve re-organized things a little.
We’ve also changed our blog around a bit to hopefully make it easier to read and navigate, and made some small changes to the forums layout to make posting more inviting.
Here’s a few choice bullet points to summarize the rest of the updates:
- Private messages sent to administrators now don’t cost karma (it used to just be the Scribophile user who was free to message)
- The last post in the “new in the forums” are of the front page is now clickable so you don’t have to search through the entire thread to see the latest addition.
- The infamous “floating red badge” bug in Safari and Google Chrome should now be fixed! Jumpin’ jackrabbits!!
- By popular request, there’s now a section for “websites” in your personal profiles. Make sure to prefix the websites with http:// and they’ll be clickable.
- We’ve added a search box for the forums. Right now it sends you to a Google search, but later down the line we’ll update it to look like the rest of the site.
- A bug related to the way ratings are handled for novels is now fixed. A few of you lovely Scribophiles had mailed us about this.
- Private messages for free members are now cheaper, at .1 karma points per message from .25.
There’s more to it this round of updates behind the scenes, but they’re mostly nagging bugs and small design niggles that we’ve finally quashed. Please let us know in the comments how you like (or don’t like) the new updates—we rely on you to be vocal about what’s working or not working so that we know what needs fixing!
And Before You Go, Join @scribophile on Twitter For Free Stuff
We’re slowly but surely growing an audience on Twitter. Follow @scribophile for intriguing writing links, site news, and the occasional giveaway.
In the next few weeks we’ll be giving away some free Full membership upgrades through Twitter, so follow us to get the details soon!