Monday, 28 January 2013

NEW YEAR-NEW LOVE WRAP UP...and new challenge announced - WE LOVE LOVERS!

Hello my lovelies!

First off a big thank you to all who participated in RFW's first Challenge of 2013, New Year-New Love. This challenge was about moving forward; leaving a relationship or life that wasn't panning out, and opening our MC to the realm of possibility. I admit when I came up with this concept I was thinking along the chic-lit lines of boldly re-entering the dating world and taking all the opportunities by storm.

I was more than a little impressed with the unique directions the authors ventured into: a couple of life after death renewals, a death as a new beginning, a warning to avoid death with a new life abroad, acceptance of the inevitable, a trip to the past to view the beginning, and a few totally new and unexpected beginnings.

Overall, I think each entry reached the goal of forward movement, as even when our characters were looking into the past, they were learning from the experiences and committing to a new future.  Well done on capturing the theme.

Moving forward into February's Challenge, I'm sure you can guess RFW will be looking for true romance. But not just Any romance; we want you to write a fan-fiction involving your FAVORITE romance couples. As examples: Heathcliffe/Kathy, Rhett/Scarlett, Edward/Bella, Christian/Anastasia, Mr Darcy/Elizabeth, Rick/Ilsa, Jack/Rose, Katniss/ infinitum.

Some of you may be asking "what the heck is fan-fiction?"  I had to do a little research to familiarize myself with this writing style myself. According to Wikipedia: "Works of fan fiction are rarely commissioned or authorized by the original work's owner, creator, or publisher; also, they are almost never professionally published. Because of this, many stories often contain a disclaimer stating that the creator of the work owns none of the characters."

Media scholar Henry Jenkins explains in his article on Transmedia Storytelling: The encyclopedic ambitions of transmedia texts often results in what might be seen as gaps or excesses in the unfolding of the story: that is, they introduce potential plots which can not be fully told or extra details which hint at more than can be revealed. Readers, thus, have a strong incentive to continue to elaborate on these story elements, working them over through their speculations, until they take on a life of their own. Fan fiction can be seen as an unauthorized expansion of these media franchises into new directions which reflect the reader's desire to "fill in the gaps"

The Urban Dictionary describes fan fiction as: ". . when someone takes either the story or characters (or both) of a certain piece of work, whether it be a novel, tv show, movie, etc, and create their own story based on it." (Perhaps think of the many takes on the Cinderella story.) And as: "Fiction written by fans for other fans about the fandoms that they like. Usually the author takes the characters and/or the setting of the fandom and writes a new or continuing plot."


For February's Challenge, your hosts invite authors to write up to 1000 words of fanfiction involving your favorite romance couple from TV, movie, literature or historical accounts. Remember; your post MUST include a credit/link back to the original author/creator of the characters. Your link can be: a movie/book trailer, link to a purchasing site for the novel, magazine article or other author interview in which the characters are described by the originating author, wiki or IMB article; or anything that gives full credit to the creator.

Do your own research on fanfiction if needed, (the most famous recent example is Shades of Gray which is a fan fiction piece based on Edward and Bella from Twilight),  but aside from the linking requirement and 1k word count; anything goes, well...nearly anything.

If you have further questions regarding this prompt, leave a comment on this post, as it may help others who are wondering about the same thing. Of course, you are welcome to email Denise and Donna any time.

Have fun with the WE LOVE LOVERS challenge. The linky will open tentatively Wednesday, February 6, and close Sunday Feb 17 (Aussie time).

Monday, 7 January 2013

#RomanticFridayWriters - New Year! New Love! Sign up here!

get the InLinkz code

Friday, 4 January 2013

WELCOME TO THE NEW YEAR and announcing our first challenge for 2013!

Welcome back my fellow Mayan Apocalypse survivors.  I hope you are as happy to still be here as I am.

RFW has experienced many changes over the last year--Francine stepped down as co-host--I came on board as partner--we gained and lost many followers and members--there were changes to our posting schedule and critiquing guidelines--a safety policy was implemented.

The biggest changes Denise and I noted were in the growth of our consistent authors. Many of the Challenges did just that; challenged our RFW authors to stretch themselves out of their comfort zones, to write in different POVs, different genres, or even different styles as poets wrote prose and fiction authors wrote memoir or other non-fiction pieces.

Judging for Featured Writer and Runner up became a conflicted challenge as authors submitted well polished and well written excerpts. The main purpose of RFW has always been a place for writers who enjoy a little romance to practice and hone their craft; to obtain critiques and writing tips, show off published works, or just write for the sake of writing and having a few laughs or warm and gushy moments.

RFW hosts thank all of you for your support of the site, the encouragement offered submitting members, and mostly for your participating in our prompt Challenges. Give yourselves a round of applause (and chocolate kisses) for a wonderful year of togetherness.

Moving forward into 2013, we expect more changes, and hope you continue your support and participation. We (Denise and I) would like you all to know that we have listened to your requests and complaints, even when we did not immediately respond. And your generosity and patience towards us as hosts while we figured out some complications and unexpected changes are greatly appreciated.

While many of our proposed improvements are still in the discussion phase, (we have been busy enjoying our families and holiday celebrations too), some changes we are able to implement immediately:

 - Posting schedule: we realize that our members all have day lives and writing obligations outside of RFW, so we will only have one challenge a month as of right away. Tentatively, we will post the linky during either the first or the second week of the month (on Monday, at least in January) and the linky will remain open for three weeks. We will do a short wrap up post during the last week of the month, and announce the next challenge within the wrap up post.
 - Word counts: with the decreased number of challenges, we propose an increase in the word count for the challenges--up to 1000 words (but don't feel you have to struggle to reach this maximum.) This should alleviate the frustrations participants have encountered in developing a story concept in the limited 4-600 words, while still keeping the story a flash fiction piece. (see the "flash fiction" tab above for guidelines)
 - Wrap up critiques: It has become habit for the hosts to post mini-critiques (which are more like synopses) at each Challenge wrap up. This takes a lot of time on the part of the co-hosts; we generally read each entry several times and compare notes, and ya know, it's quite involved and has become onerous with the increase in entries. For these reasons, we have decided that those types of critiques should be reserved for FW/RU Challenges only.

There are feedback codes posted in the tab labeled "critiques" above which should be used to annotate the level and kind of acceptable feedback on any submitted challenge. (If you don't tell your readers what type of critique is acceptable to you, you will most likely just receive a short - 'I liked your story')...As mentioned earlier, wrap up posts will include an introduction to the next challenge, but the Challenges tab will still contain usual requirements/suggestions/guidelines for the particular prompt, which will change each time.

As always, please feel free to email Denise or Donna with any private concerns, suggestions, or questions; or leave your comments publicly at the RFW site. Member input at the site only makes RFW an enjoyable site for all. We LOVE discussions!!

Some changes have been made to some of the tabs - such as the Submissions tab. These will continue to be tweaked.

Now...on to more fun things . . the first RFW Challenge of the New Year.

Lets kick start this NEW YEAR with NEW LOVE and a challenge to get us all back into the writing mode. In keeping with the theme "out with the old, in with the new", RFW wants to see our protagonist/s venturing anew into the dating world with a new look/dating plan.  Do tell - in 1000 words or less - what those New Years resolutions on the love life include.  Make a list, plan an event, seek an oracle (therapist/best friend) for advice, or dive in unexpectedly with a spur of the moment resolve to make love happen. We’re looking for intent, not outcome

And that's a wrap for our first post of 2013. Welcome back everyone. We are looking forward to another fun and exciting year of reading and writing about romantic life.

Look for our first linky list of the year on Monday!