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February 2016 - Grand Fiction Challenge READER'S CHOICE POLL! (1 Viewer)

Which Grand Fiction story do you like best?

  • The Coward's Way Out

    Votes: 2 9.1%
  • Countdown To Oblivion

    Votes: 1 4.5%
  • The Place

    Votes: 4 18.2%
  • The Crossing

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • The Case Of The Angry Wife

    Votes: 2 9.1%
  • Kimari's Heart

    Votes: 2 9.1%
  • Like Snuffing Out A Candle

    Votes: 6 27.3%
  • Morning Glory

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • The Goat Farm

    Votes: 1 4.5%
  • Impossible Cat And The Skunk Of Freedom

    Votes: 1 4.5%
  • Dead By Dawn

    Votes: 1 4.5%
  • Desperate Times

    Votes: 1 4.5%
  • Dawn

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Infitialis Navitas

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Musiques Nocturnes

    Votes: 1 4.5%
  • Fighting Back

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    22
  • Poll closed .

Schrody

WF Veterans
The People's Choice doesn't have to be impartial -- in face it should probably not be. It is strictly a popularity contest. Just like in the real world, the best written, most thoughtful, books aren't all best-sellers. Don't worry about being fair, just pick one you like a vote for it. The judges will hand the rest of the stuff.

Nah, I wouldn't feel okay if I did. Fairness and justice is very important to me :)
 

W.Goepner

WF Veterans
Gee wiz folks. I was simply wondering if I should have been more subjective or simply vote for the one I liked. (As I did before I asked)

I read them all and enjoyed them, I had a hard choice of which was my favorite. (Of course I cannot say which because that could or would influence others) Anyway two were close with a tight third, a fourth was trying to poke its self into my thoughts but I, well you who have read my writing and understand my intimacy might be able to guess which I liked best.

What I find disturbing, is with 1101 active members why there are only 12 votes, which is less than the number of stories to be judged by the people.
 

InkwellMachine

WF Veterans
Unfortunately, I think most people will look through the titles, pick out the ones that feel the most promising, and read those. That's a pretty common way to choose which book/story to read when you have literally no background for any of them. That and cover art, but we don't have that luxury.
 

midnightpoet

WF Veterans
I would think it's pretty common, and makes sense that si-fi writers may like si-fi stories best, fantasy writers may like fantasy stories best, an so forth. I've often wondered about that, because of my experience as a judge - so I really do try to be objective. Sometimes it's hard on a genre I'm not familiar with, but as my experience judging other genres increases it gives me a broader perspective.
 

Harper J. Cole

Creative Area Specialist (Speculative Fiction)
Staff member
Chief Mentor
It's true, I voted for one of the other sci-fi stories. There's an element of luck to having lots of voters who like your genre, but you still have beat the other stories of that type.

HC
 

W.Goepner

WF Veterans
I will say this I am not a fan of horror. Though I do not mind some horror movies, I do not get into the blood and guts. (Hmm I think I should have wrote that in my interview)

The one time I tightened my belt and judged, I found myself wanting to dump a story for its genre rather than if it was done well or not and what SPaG I could discern. I found myself challenged to choose the correct scores for the piece based on the right reasons.

Judging is not simply saying this story was good based on it being a Lassie story, where this one failed because it was a Freddy Crouger, and this one was between because it was Star Wars/Star Trek ish. When judging the CoF One must compare each piece to the fire starter, Then decide how well the piece held, followed or supported, or even differed from the fire starter. On top of the SPaG, tone/voice, and effect.

People's choice, I do realize, is which piece hit it home fore ME.

Take a guess which one, and I will tell you at the relieving of the awards.
 

Cran

Da Boss Emeritus
Patron
I would think it's pretty common, and makes sense that si-fi writers may like si-fi stories best, fantasy writers may like fantasy stories best, an so forth. I've often wondered about that, because of my experience as a judge - so I really do try to be objective. Sometimes it's hard on a genre I'm not familiar with, but as my experience judging other genres increases it gives me a broader perspective.
Except for arguing for the replacement of writers with readers,* I'd agree with this.

*Yes, here on a writers' forum, they usually overlap, and many readers of works tend to critique them as writers rather than as readers, but it is as readers first where the like/don't like decisions dominate.

The one time I tightened my belt and judged, I found myself wanting to dump a story for its genre rather than if it was done well or not and what SPaG I could discern. I found myself challenged to choose the correct scores for the piece based on the right reasons.

Judging is not simply saying this story was good based on it being a Lassie story, where this one failed because it was a Freddy Crouger, and this one was between because it was Star Wars/Star Trek ish. When judging the CoF One must compare each piece to the fire starter, Then decide how well the piece held, followed or supported, or even differed from the fire starter. On top of the SPaG, tone/voice, and effect.
It can be a big shock to first time judges to learn this, and to find their decisions as much as under scrutiny as they gave the entries.

People's choice, I do realize, is which piece hit it home fore ME.
Yes, which for judging is only one part of assessment process.

Take a guess which one, and I will tell you at the relieving of the awards.
I wouldn't dare try to guess. I'm still trying to decide if I'm going to vote at all.
 

W.Goepner

WF Veterans
Except for arguing for the replacement of writers with readers,* I'd agree with this.

*Yes, here on a writers' forum, they usually overlap, and many readers of works tend to critique them as writers rather than as readers, but it is as readers first where the like/don't like decisions dominate.


It can be a big shock to first time judges to learn this, and to find their decisions as much as under scrutiny as they gave the entries.


Yes, which for judging is only one part of assessment process.


I wouldn't dare try to guess. I'm still trying to decide if I'm going to vote at all.

When I realized what I had done in reviewing my scores before sending them, I went back and corrected my comments and reevaluated my score. I even think I mentioned in my comments that it was extra hard to judge the piece because I did not agree with the genre.
 

20oz

Senior Member
I don't know who to vote for. I ones I'm debating out who will get my vote are "The Coward's Way Out," "The Place," and "Kimari's Heart."

Tough. I love them for different reasons. :dispirited:
 

bazz cargo

Retired Supervisor
Judging is part assessment of competence and part impact. The most important point is how interesting and immersive the read is. Being blind to genre bias is tough but necessary.

Popular choice is whatever floats your boat.
 

20oz

Senior Member
Even if you were to look at each and every entry objectively, you'll subjectively choose "the best one". So, people, vote. :D
 

Cran

Da Boss Emeritus
Patron
I don't know who to vote for. I ones I'm debating out who will get my vote are "The Coward's Way Out," "The Place," and "Kimari's Heart."

Tough. I love them for different reasons. :dispirited:
Which is why the short straw/pick one approach doesn't do the challenge or the entries justice.

The other thing we should consider is this reticence to discuss the stories until after it's all over. I know it's come about because of not wanting to influence other people still preparing entries or the judges in their deliberations, but I'm not sure that the benefit outweighs the cost of not attracting broader interest in what's happening.

What these challenges are missing is the peanut gallery, the commentators, the razzle dazzle of live competitions. The world is moving away from old dry wait and see ways of doing things.

So, well done on speaking up and naming names. You like those stories. I agree two out of three.
 

W.Goepner

WF Veterans
I don't know who to vote for. I ones I'm debating out who will get my vote are "The Coward's Way Out," "The Place," and "Kimari's Heart."

Tough. I love them for different reasons. :dispirited:
Which is why the short straw/pick one approach doesn't do the challenge or the entries justice.

The other thing we should consider is this reticence to discuss the stories until after it's all over. I know it's come about because of not wanting to influence other people still preparing entries or the judges in their deliberations, but I'm not sure that the benefit outweighs the cost of not attracting broader interest in what's happening.

What these challenges are missing is the peanut gallery, the commentators, the razzle dazzle of live competitions. The world is moving away from old dry wait and see ways of doing things.

So, well done on speaking up and naming names. You like those stories. I agree two out of three.

I agree here Cran, The ol' wait until the vote is over routine is so nerve racking. (and I am not in this contest) I mean how is it with real life competitions? I cannot see the judges having every one in the audience stay quiet. Besides popularity is just that, and if talking about why I like a story coincides with yours it might mean we will choose the same one. Or you might be able to show me what I missed or did not think about in one over the other.

Can you imagine the pageants being judged behind closed doors, or without the cheers of the audiences. I do not think this closed door competition is valid. Main reason is The meet and potatoes of the judging is not supposed to be sway-able by comments, SPaG is SPaG, and no matter how much we like or dislike the piece the the SPaG never changes. Also popularity contests are popularity contests, the weight of my thoughts should be able to sway others and vice a versa.

I also like two of the three but my third is the one I chose.
 

InkwellMachine

WF Veterans
I thought The Place was very well-written, and pretty poignant to boot. It ultimately didn't do a whole lot for me, but I think it was the most technically-excellent of my competitor's entries, so there you go. Whoever wrote it, good on you.
 

Cran

Da Boss Emeritus
Patron
I agree here Cran, The ol' wait until the vote is over routine is so nerve racking. (and I am not in this contest) I mean how is it with real life competitions? I cannot see the judges having every one in the audience stay quiet. Besides popularity is just that, and if talking about why I like a story coincides with yours it might mean we will choose the same one. Or you might be able to show me what I missed or did not think about in one over the other.

Can you imagine the pageants being judged behind closed doors, or without the cheers of the audiences. I do not think this closed door competition is valid. Main reason is The meet and potatoes of the judging is not supposed to be sway-able by comments, SPaG is SPaG, and no matter how much we like or dislike the piece the the SPaG never changes. Also popularity contests are popularity contests, the weight of my thoughts should be able to sway others and vice a versa.

I also like two of the three but my third is the one I chose.
That's it. The challenges we have fall between the two different ways that real life competitions happen.

The embargo on audiences and commentators discussing the pros and cons or finer points or history of an entry or entrant only happen in totally blind competitions; ie, the entries are not seen by anyone except the judges until after it's all over and the winners are announced. Then everyone can talk about it ... officially. Unofficially, people still talk about it but not for the record. The most common examples of this form are closed school or university exams, and some writing and arts competitions.

Competitions where the entries or performances are visible as they are presented usually come with running commentaries, spot interviews, discussions of the event and its participants and various forms of advertising by sponsors, if any. Examples range from sporting and creative performance contests from the local poetry slam to the biggest awards nights which have news leads and lobbying for months beforehand.

The Challenge informal discussion threads - coffee bar, bistro, diner, etc - were meant to provide venues for these sorts of discussions; anything and everything from the challenge overall to themes and prompts to Chocolate Threadbear's killer opening sentence or TicToc's excellent use of imagery in the third par to Why do so many entrants write sci fi or horror and so few write period romances?

That is partly to keep the entry threads clean for reading, judging, and posterity. And partly to keep the interest up, to keep the discussion going, and yes, to raise the bar for the next ones. Somewhere along the way, the intention changed and embargoes went up on Likes for stories and on discussing the current challenge in any but the broadest of terms.

These things get raised quietly from time to time, but too often get set aside as everything else needs doing. This might be a good time to open up the discussion and get a sense of what our participating members and challenge organisers feel would best serve into the future.
 

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