Thursday, 29 August 2013

World of Warcraft Writing Competition

EDIT: Prize list has been updated.

   A lot of World of Warcraft fans like to write fan fiction. Sometimes they're poems, sometimes short stories, and sometimes are a lot longer. I've decided that, this first challenge (I'll try something else in a couple of months, which is different to screenshots and writing), will be a writing challenge. But accompanying screenshots wouldn't be rejected if you wanted to add more visual to it. be nice ^^

   I don't know how many of you - if any - read Atherya's diary, but I decided that this writing competition would be based around that. I'm giving you all creative control of the diary's story direction. I've got a few loot cards - mostly consumables for fun - that I can give out as prizes throughout. I'm working on a prize list, which is being updated every now and then (I love prize bundles!), but if you're a crafter, or want to donate a prize for the winner, then please do feel free! Read the 'Details' section further down the page.

   There are two requirements for the challenge/competition.
1. Your piece must involve Atherya.
2. It must take place in Northrend.
   The reason I say that it must involve Athreya is because the best and therefore obviously winning submission will be written into the diary itself, and the actual piece of writing that won would be added into the Diary of Atherya Sunleaf page at the appropriate point (ie just after the corresponding diary entry).
   And as for why it must take place in Northrend, I want to get it added to the diary relatively soon after the end of the competition, and Northrend is where she's going next. Initially she was going to go to Outland after the Eastern Kingdoms, as you would do when you level, but since she reached 85 before I even managed to post the diary from the Badlands, I decided that, to catch up on expansions, I'd miss Outland and leave it for later. Afterall, explorers are more likely to explore their own world before exploring another. However, I will say that I'd prefer it not to take place in Wintergrasp, or in any raid or dungeon. She's an explorer rather than a fighter Anywhere else in Northrend, however, is fine.

   As well as the above 2 requirements, there are also 4 restrictions:
1. You cannot claim to be the person who saved her in the Tomb of the Watchers - when I wrote that part, I already had an individual in mind, and it will not be changed.
2. You cannot cause Atherya to lose limbs, fingers, toes, noses etc - no missing appendages - I realise that you cannot know what life holds, but I am also not ready for her to be maimed in such a way yet, either. This may well happen in the future, by my own hand, or one of yours, but that time is not now.
3. You cannot get freaky with her - you know exactly what I mean - I already have some sort of romance planned for the future, and her character is relatively reserved when it comes to this sort of thing, too. She wouldn't like it.
4. You cannot kill Atherya - a lot of role players will tell you that you need to be able to let go of your character, after all, as I said above, you don't know what life holds. But I am not roleplaying, I am writing, and I have no intention of letting her go yet. I've put too much work into the diary so far, and have other things planned. She will die eventually, of course, be it by my hand or one of yours, but, once again, that time is not now.

Hints/Suggestions To Make This Easier For You:

1. You can either email me your stories directly, or, preferably, add them to your own blog/deviantART/other public webspace, and then email me the link. This will make it MUCH easier for me to keep track of submissions, as well as show the honorable mentions on my blog when the competition closes. The only story that will be published onto my blog will be the winner; all other stories will be linked, and may have the first paragraph printed with it.

2. It should be relatively obvious that your character/s are encouraged to be in your writing. Don't feel you need to alter their personality in any way. If you want to write an Ally who is neutral towards the Horde, then do so; if you want to write an Ally who hates the Horde, go ahead; if you want to write a Horde who hates Blood Elves, then do so. I'm giving full creative reign, so long as you keep the two requirements and four restrictions in mind. Anything I've not mentioned, such as injuring, is fair game. You could even include two of your characters - for example, perhaps your Dwarf would attack Atherya and wound her quite seriously, while your Tauren would bring her back to health. If her wounds are serious enough to need her to rest for a week, then be sure to mention it.

3. What you're writing is a short story, not a diary entry. The winning story will be kept in mind when I come to write the diary entries that take place in Northrend, and will affect the story. But your actual piece of writing will also be archived alongside the diary. The diary entry/ies that come from the winning story will have a line of credit at the end and a link to the winning submission, and the winning submission will be fully credited.

4. It does not have to be written from Atherya's point of view - in fact, I'd advise against it if you're not familiar with her character. You can write it in third person, or you can write it from the point of view of your own character. As I've said before, I'm giving you almost complete creative control. I say almost, because there are the 2 requirements and the 4 restrictions that have to be kept in mind, but to be honest, I'm relatively certain that the 4 restrictions wouldn't occur to most of you anyway, being so specific.

5. Get to know Atherya a little. I'd suggest reading a few diary entries. None of them are very long, and take a couple of minutes each. But, if you're in a hurry, the more recent entries show her truer, as I've gotten to know her better. And if you're in a real hurry, I've put together a character profile for you, detailing the important parts of her identity.

6. The diary takes place in present-day. Northrend will no longer be under Arthas' thumb, just the same as Illidan is no longer ruling in Outland. Arthas is long dead. So, if Scourge come into your story, keep the Lich King's current state in mind.

7. Your story doesn't have to tie up perfectly. It doesn't have to end in your character leaving, or your character dying. If you can't come up with a perfect way to tie it off, leave it open. If you have suggestions for how to tie it off but you can't work out how to get to it, leave a note at the end of your story to say so, and what your ending thought was, and if you win, I can work that out instead. The diary isn't going to end straight after the competition, it's got a long way to go yet.


   I will leave the submissions open from the 1st of September to the 30th - that's a full month. There is no minimum or maximum number of words/lines/pages for this contest, but I do ask you to not go crazy. I'm hoping that I'll have several to read.
   Submissions - links to the story on your blog, or the story itself - should be sent to me via email. You can obviously post the entries on your own blogs if you'd like - either send me the link to the post, or send me the writing itself. It's your choice.
   It should be more or less obvious that your character/s should be involved in this piece of writing. I am looking to have a little less control over my story, and if this contest goes well, I'll definitely be opening it up again in the future.
   If anyone has anything they'd like to offer as a grand prize - something you've made or will make, or something you're willing to pay for or contribute in some way - then please do get in touch. This is something that will apply to all future contests and challenges, but, unlike other websites, if you donate a prize, you can still enter and be eligible to win - and if you do happen to win what you donated, you can opt for it to be given to someone else.
   There will only be one winner, but loot cards may be given out if I receive a really awesome submission, or a really awesome accompanying screenshot. And if you do happen to win a loot card, you are still eligible to win the grand prize - whatever that will be.
   And, finally you can enter more than once. This doesn't mean resubmitting your story seven times, but it does mean that you can submit one story, then submit a totally different one (that fits the criteria) and have them both eligible. This increases your chances, but also increases your creativity, and my excitement for having more to read. I am really looking forward to reading them.

   So what are you waiting for? GO! And, also, spread the word please! My following isn't very big, but I'm very excited about this.

Brief Character Profile
Name: Atherya Sunleaf
Race: Blood Elf
Physical Description: Unimpressive in every way. Average height, average build, average green eyes, pale blonde hair, and pale skin
Age: just over 100, which is around the 20's-30's in our own lifetimes .
Class: Irrelevant. She is a Paladin in-game, purely because I didn't have a Paladin yet, but as for her character, she doesn't have a class. She can do some minor spellwork, being a Blood Elf, and she's learning to fight as time goes by. She does, however, wear plate armour and use an axe.
Background: She comes from an average family who lived near the border to the Ghostlands, though her brother and father died in Arthas' attack on Silvermoon, and her mother died some years later. She left to experience the world.
Factional Standing: She will attack and defend if attacked, unless she can flee, but otherwise prefers to either attempt to slip by unnoticed, or behave carefully towards opposing factions to prevent a fight, as she is not a strong fighter, but is learning as time goes by. She could do with more help.

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