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Adventures in Self-Torture

In an effort to challenge myself to write more, I'm participating in the upcoming LJ Idol Season 8 set to begin soon. As much as I hate deadlines, I need to set a fire under my arse in hopes that it will force me to produce.


I hung out with an old friend for for a few hours the other night. Whenever we get together it's like an episode of Waking Life. We talk endlessly about ideas, the universe, mythology, transformation, anthropology, the human mind, etc. One of the things we talked about is our creative frustrations and the possibility of doing a small literary publication, which is an idea I've been chewing on since I attended the San Francisco ZineFest last month. With this post, I light a match.


( 17 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 16th, 2011 05:21 pm (UTC)
Wait, what? What is this? How do you know about it? Gah! I'm heading out the door and cannot noodle around to find out. What is this awesome-sounding something of which you speak?
Oct. 16th, 2011 06:04 pm (UTC)
It's an lj writing contest. It pretty quickly turns into just a popularity contest, but I'm going to participate it in just for the writing prompts and the deadlines.

Here's their profile page: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/profile

If you want to participate (please do!) go here and follow the directions: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/485253.html
Oct. 16th, 2011 08:36 pm (UTC)
Oh d-d-d-dear...I just noodled around the site and a few dozen links and some old posts and my head is absolutely spinning.

I'm usually the type who'll plow forward thinking, "No worries, I can figure it out as I go along" but this seems quite intense, for lack of a better word.

Do you know anyone who has done it before? Have you been a reader/voter in past years?

The creative side of me likes the idea of prompts and deadlines for the fire-under-the-ass incentive to write, but the accountantly side of me is worried about not understanding and following the rules. *sigh* I'll re-read again tomorrow and see if it seems any clearer.
Oct. 16th, 2011 10:21 pm (UTC)
I have "watched" it before. I don't understand everything, just that a prompt will be posted on the therealljidol along with a deadline. You post your writing on the promted topic in your own lj and as long as you meet the deadline you will be included in a poll that they post where people can vote for your entry. They break the contestants into smaller groups. I'm confident that you can figure it out as you go along, so I hope you will take a leap of faith and join!

Edited at 2011-10-17 01:32 am (UTC)
Oct. 17th, 2011 02:51 am (UTC)
This is my fifth year competing, it's really not as hard as it looks as long as you make sure you have the community on your Friends List and get email notifications sent directly to you so you don't miss anything.

Basicly, you get a topic each week, write whatever you are inspired to write on the topic (fiction, nonfic, essay, poetry, et al) in your own journal. Post a link to your entry in the LJI topic thread before the deadline. At the end of the deadline, a poll will be posted with links to everyone's entries, and you read and vote for as many as you want to -- and ALWAYS vote for yourself, as well. Trust me, that one vote can make a HUGE difference some weeks! Then the poll ends, the bottom vote-getters get eliminated, and it starts all over again with a new topic.

Once we really get into the swing of it, Gary (aka clauderainsrm will post reminders about deadlines and such in each Green Room (which is just a social place to hang out and get to know other contestants), and that helps a lot.
Oct. 16th, 2011 10:08 pm (UTC)
Way to be!
Oct. 16th, 2011 10:13 pm (UTC)
Are you going to do it?
Oct. 16th, 2011 10:27 pm (UTC)
Probably. Because I always end up doing it. It's hard to get the same level of excitement about it as doing it your first time when it's such a unique, fun experience and way to meet net people on a dying LJ...hopefully there will still be a lot of people participating.

I know you'll do excellent.
Oct. 16th, 2011 10:58 pm (UTC)
I hope you do it again. I am looking forward to meeting writers who are still active on lj.

As far as the "excitement" goes, it's going to be an exercise in non-attachment for me.....an exercise in which I will completely fail despite my best intentions not to care. It will be brutal for my ego when I am eliminated or fail to meet a deadline, but hopefully I'll get some good writing in before that happens.

Oct. 19th, 2011 01:38 am (UTC)

And the thing, in my opinion, is to write quick. Don't get yourself an excuse about being late to miss a deadline. Once you see the topic spend an hour as soon as possible and write something--the first thing that comes to mind. You don't have to post it or link it right away. If something better comes to mind, you can always re-write. But your first instinct is often the best. I've never missed a deadline, but I feel like my most half-assed ideas come from kicking around too many things too long and then trying to force something.
Oct. 19th, 2011 01:54 am (UTC)
Wow. Good to know. Thanks.
Oct. 17th, 2011 02:53 am (UTC)
Do it! We're up to about 195 contestants last I checked the sign-up thread, with quite a lot of newbies.

You know you wanna! Besides, you're one of my favorites, and I'd love to see you back again.
Oct. 19th, 2011 01:38 am (UTC)
Thanks! That's nice of you to say.

I signed up.
Oct. 19th, 2011 01:55 am (UTC)
Oct. 19th, 2011 03:46 am (UTC)
Woot! :)
Oct. 17th, 2011 02:43 am (UTC)
Welcome to the Idol family, I hope you find plenty of fuel for your flame!
Oct. 17th, 2011 04:03 am (UTC)
Thanks! I'm looking forward to it.
( 17 comments — Leave a comment )