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I know that RL can be a bear and making a commitment to write a substantive story can come to feel like having the Sword of Damocles hanging over our heads -- for months and months. And then we start to feel the pressure of not delivering ... swiftly followed by nebulous feelings of guilt. Can make a writer wonder if they want to contribute again this year or just let it go.

But authors have raised significant contributions in past years, so I wondered if there might be other options for contributions that might be easier, less time consuming, and even fun.

On the other side of the 'donation' are the bidders, who make their own significant contributions. However, only very few can afford to spend big bucks for a story ... but maybe there are ways to make our creative contributions more accessible. Fifty confirmed bids for a ten dollar item is five thousand dollars. If the donation goes for fifteen, twenty or even thirty dollars, that's still very affordable and, well, we can all do the math and see what that would mean for Moonridge.

So, here are some ideas that might be less work for authors, or less pressure, and that would give folks who can't afford the big bucks for long stories an opportunity, yet still raise significant dollars for Moonridge. Similar ideas could work for artists. And maybe authors and artists could team up to offer irresistible auction items! Here you go:



1. Offer a drabble for $10 to anyone who contributes that much; and maybe up to five page scene for $20. If worried about being 'flooded' by requests, limit to the first ten, fifteen or twenty people who sign up -- or simply offer the same drabble or scene to everyone. Author could specify what they would be prepared to write ie gen/slash, angst, h/c, drama, humour, slice of life, friendship, tender moments, sentinel senses or guide inventiveness, etc. Just ten requests for each item offered would add up to $300!

2. If prepared to write a story, offer it at at $25 - $30 to everyone who contributes that much. Ten 'winners' of a single story would amount to $250 to $300 for the Zoo, but less pressure, maybe, because no one would pay more than $25 or $30 for it. I suspect the uptake would well exceed ten people. And that's just for one author and one story!

3. If not sure about writing anything new for this auction, whether drabble, scene or story, maybe offer a zine of three to five of your previously posted stories, winner's choice of stories. Maybe some artists would volunteer to do cover art and a few inside pieces? And maybe folks who produce zines would do the printing as their contribution. Couldn't hurt to ask.

4. Artists, these same ideas could work for you, too, ie offering a single new print/manip at a lower specified price to the first twenty or thirty people who contribute or offering a selection of three to five of your existing pieces in a portfolio.

So ... what do you think? If any of these ideas work for you, send your 'donation' to Aly, so it can be loaded onto the auction site!



And, thanks once again, lit_gal, for making this neat icon and for allowing others to use it!

Comments

( 23 comments — Leave a comment )
lit_gal
Mar. 18th, 2007 10:39 pm (UTC)
These are great ideas. I'm working on "The Observer," but if I offered it to anyone who paid $30, I bet I would get more than if I offered it for one bidding. You so smart!
caarianna
Mar. 19th, 2007 07:38 pm (UTC)
The Observer? LOL. What about the other story you're considering for Moonridge? Dare we look forward to two new stories from you? ::grins happily in hopeful anticipation::
lit_gal
Mar. 19th, 2007 07:41 pm (UTC)
The other would be "MasterMind" but it's a huge story, one that I don't know I can do quick enough for Moonridge. I may just hold on to that one.
caarianna
Mar. 19th, 2007 07:50 pm (UTC)
You can always offer a story that's not written yet, and write it after the auction. In fact, that's what the majority of writers do. I've done it both ways. There's a certain relief in having a story done in advance to just send out, but that's not at all necessary. In most cases, the story isn't written until months after the auction. The winners 'own' the story for a month from receipt, whenever that is, before it can be posted elsewhere. So, yes, if you want, you could offer Master Mind as well as The Observer.
lit_gal
Mar. 19th, 2007 07:54 pm (UTC)
I did the pre-sale thing last year, and I found that it caused some panic. I even did a Moonridge story for someone else who found that having a reader who had PAID had upped the stress. So I really prefer to have it written *first* this year.
caarianna
Mar. 19th, 2007 08:02 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I understand ... I really did find it a relief last year to have written the stories in advance. I finished one during the auction itself and put it in as a late item with only two days to go before it closed. This year, I'm trying to get some work done again in advance but I'm offering one long story as a winner's choice of either a continuation of the Bitterwood Creek sage or the My Sentinel futuristic series. Whichever one gets chosen, it will take some time to write it. But ... I've been wanting to write both for some time now and putting it in the auction will give me the impetus to get at least one of these stories done in the next year.

You're a prolific, very talented and justifiably popular writer. And people know you fulfill your commitments. Whatever you choose to do, you'll be making a real difference for the animals.
justmej
Mar. 19th, 2007 07:50 am (UTC)
I think this would be a great idea, having a set amount for a story.
caarianna
Mar. 19th, 2007 07:35 pm (UTC)
Having come up with the ideas, I'm now wondering how to participate myself. I think I'll probably do some of everything ie a drabble, missing scene/epilogue, and maybe a story for anyone who contributes a set amount, and one or two entries for a traditional bidding process. It's good to know that you, as one of the traditional high bidders, would be happy to have a set amount with the idea that more people could bid, for perhaps a larger overall contribution to Moonridge. Maybe our 'Secret Key' story could be a 'set bid' option?
justmej
Mar. 19th, 2007 09:30 pm (UTC)
This would be more like the bidding up at Moonridge for the animals. You know how they get to a price and ask for more donations at that price, makes it allot easier to bid at the lower prices, more can join in and I would say you make more money. The story " Silent Key " would be a great on for that. Plus I dont care how many people are reading a story the same time I am, as long as it's making money who cares. Thats what were trying to do in the first place.
caarianna
Mar. 19th, 2007 10:04 pm (UTC)
You've always been really generous about sharing the stories you win. I agree with you completely, both that this is similar to the on site auction process of matching bids and that the whole purpose is to contribute as much as we can collectively to Moonridge. Since you're okay with the idea, I'll offer The Silent Key at a set price with the hope of obtaining a whole lot of bids! Thanks!
earth2skye
Mar. 19th, 2007 08:17 am (UTC)
These are some great ideas. But since I'm gonna be doing this for the first time this year I have rather a problem putting any price on a piece of my work. The more I think about it, the more terrified I am of putting anything in at all (and then not ending up with any bids). But I'm sure this will work out great for all you Moonridge professionals ;)

(Also, I'm not doing "short" so well in any case. So if I am going to put something in, it's gonna be work either way. My hope's just that, if I get bid on, it'll provide me with that extra bit of motivation I need in order to finish writing a story in something amounting to an acceptable time frame.)
caarianna
Mar. 19th, 2007 07:16 pm (UTC)
Hey, a long story is GREAT! LOL. I share the problem of trying to write anything 'short'! As for 'putting a value' on your work, no worries. If you simply submit the story as an auction item, then folks bid and whoever bids the most wins. And please don't worry about getting bids -- it's wonderful that you will make a contribution! You will get bids and whatever amount you raise is more than the animals would have without your help.

I only made these suggestions because there are some authors who have either just finished or are working on their story for winners in last year's auction, and I know they've been feeling pressured and are worried about incurring more commitments in this year's auction. For them, a shorter piece, like a drabble, or the idea of a zine of favorite existing stories, could allow them to still participate without a lot of duress.

I'm really sorry if my suggestions only served to worry you. I remember the first time I contributed, not so long ago, and how nervous I was because I'd never participated in an auction before. But it's fun and easy. You just send Aly the info ie One long TS story. You indicate whether it's gen or slash. If you have started a story already, you can indicate something about it ie h/c, humour, case story, angst, first times, etc. If you haven't started a story yet, then you indicate what you're comfortable writing or simply indicate what you are not comfortable with, ie no torture, rape, etc. And that's it! Really is easy. After the auction, Aly provides the winner's email coordinates to the author, so you can connect directly.

It's really wonderful that you're planning to make a contribution this year!
earth2skye
Mar. 20th, 2007 02:24 pm (UTC)
Ah, don't worry that you worried me more than I was before. And thanks for your encouragement! I think I will do my offers the traditional way indeed and just offer one or two of the fics that I sort of want to write soon anyway. I still remain unsure of how much of a choice I want to give the winner wrt the story or if any at all, but I suspect that I'll figure that out eventually, too. *g*
lit_gal
Mar. 19th, 2007 08:20 pm (UTC)
I'm just going to copy and paste what I said to t_verano since it fits so well here, too.

That was SO me one year ago. I wrote descriptions for two "open" stories, things for the bidder to prompt me, and then I didn't send and didn't send and didn't send, and I thought, what the hell am I doing because people wouldn't bid on me, and boy wouldn't that be embarrassing (I had just joined the fandom). But you know, Senfen are a pretty laid back group, and whatever you do will be the right thing. When the website gets put up, it will be easier for you to see how other people phrase things, and Aly is really good about adding things late for those of us afraid to jump in the water.
earth2skye
Mar. 20th, 2007 02:28 pm (UTC)
Thank you very much for your encouragement and reassurance, lit_gal. I'm really very grateful for yours and the others comments like this. I guess it's natural to feel nervous the first time one does something new, but I'm feeling a bit better now :-)
patk
Mar. 22nd, 2007 03:02 pm (UTC)
>>and then not ending up with any bids

Skye, believe me that *won't* happen. *g*

PatK
:-)
t_verano
Mar. 19th, 2007 03:15 pm (UTC)
I am so un-clued-in about Moonridge - very much feeling newbie-ness about how it works, and not even knowing beans, really, about the "traditional" ways of participating. Hmm. So, some non-traditional methods of contributing to add to Figuring It Out?...

This is all freaking me out, sort of. But I'm going to do *something* even if I don't know what or how, yet. ::resigns herself to the fact that no matter what method she chooses, it will turn out to be Not The One She Really Should Have Chosen::
lit_gal
Mar. 19th, 2007 08:19 pm (UTC)
That was SO me one year ago. I wrote descriptions for two "open" stories, things for the bidder to prompt me, and then I didn't send and didn't send and didn't send, and I thought, what the hell am I doing because people wouldn't bid on me, and boy wouldn't that be embarrassing (I had just joined the fandom). But you know, Senfen are a pretty laid back group, and whatever you do will be the right thing. When the website gets put up, it will be easier for you to see how other people phrase things, and Aly is really good about adding things late for those of us afraid to jump in the water.
t_verano
Mar. 20th, 2007 12:23 am (UTC)
You only came to TS a year ago? I am just so wowed by all of you who haven't been in TS very long, and have written so *much* terrific fic already.

I like that "laid back" description! And hearing about your first Moonridge helps -- especially because "What the hell am I doing?" has become my mantra, lately, anyway. (It saves time if I don't have to think of a new one just for Moonridge. :-))

Thanks so much for the info and the encouragement! "Afraid to jump in the water" sounds about right, but thanks to you and Ari, I'm not freaking so much about the process now. (Just the writing. But that's par for the course. *g*)
patk
Mar. 22nd, 2007 02:59 pm (UTC)
T, if you decide to offer a TS-story, no matter how short or what details you have in mind, you can bet that I'm going to bid on it. *g*

PatK
:-)
t_verano
Mar. 22nd, 2007 03:26 pm (UTC)
Okay, definite blushing going on over here, and shuffling of feet. That's *very* lovely of you -- thank you!
caarianna
Mar. 19th, 2007 07:27 pm (UTC)
T, I've sent you an email. I'm really sorry my suggestions have worried you. Yes, these are just non-traditional ideas for those who are either still working on their story commitments from last year or who have just finished and, in both cases, feeling unsure about committing to write another full story for this year's auction. And, hey, don't worry about being 'new' at this. I understand the feeling, as I was a newbie, too, not that long ago, but it really is easy to participate and the auction is a lot of fun.

Traditionally, authors simply offer a story and people bid -- very simple. The story can already have been written, or be written after the auction. Usually, the author provides Aly with basic info like: one gen (or slash) TS story. And a bit of info about the story, either what it's about, or what you're comfortable writing ie h/c, angst, humour, first times, established relationship, case story -- or what you're not comfortable writing ie no torture, rape, etc etc. This gives the bidders some idea of what they are bidding on. The winning bidder gets to 'own' the story for thirty days after receipt, and then the writer can post it as they would any other story.

As I said in my email to you, there is NO wrong way to participate, no right or wrong 'choice' of how to contribute. Whatever you do will be terrific.
annieb1955
Mar. 20th, 2007 03:39 am (UTC)
Great ideas. I offered multi-fandom options for my donation. I find it gives me some leeway then and I haven't had a problem coming up with ideas for a fic yet, but these are certainly ideas to keep in mind if I do.
( 23 comments — Leave a comment )

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