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QuickFic Session #4

UPDATE: Prompts for this session are now CLOSED.

I've received a $5 donation that I couldn't readily associate with any of the prompts below - email didn't match any I saw when I sniffed around LJ, and the PayPal transaction ID didn't appear in comments. If you sent me a donation and want it to be associated with your prompts, please let me know either in comments or as a private message.

It's time for another session! I'm a bit late getting this posted (I'd meant to get it up by midnight last night, whoops), so this session will run until about this time on the 1st of May - a total of seven days.

The premise is this: Comment here with a prompt – a sentence or two about a theme to base the writing around – or, ideally, several. I will (pick one, and) write flash fiction in response to that prompt, where “flash fiction” is in the neighbourhood of 500 words, erring more on the generous side. (I will refer to this below as a “block” of words: 500, within 5% low and 20% high. That is, each block will get you 475-600 words, and the margins add up with further blocks put toward any particular prompt.) For the benefit of those coming from other sites, you don't need to have a LiveJournal account to prompt – I am opening and unscreening anonymous comments on this post. The only comments that will be left screened are pingbacks (ungrateful as that may seem to the pingback bot), and this time around, even those will carry benefits.

This month's theme: "Say what?" Prompts should be in the form of pre-existing quotations. Famous historical figures, characters in books or even in video games -- it doesn't need to be a particularly famous quote or any such thing. (But for curiosity's sake, please include mention of the source - the person saying it, and, if fictional, the title they said it in.)

At its root, it’s that simple. I will fulfil at least one prompt for everyone who comments, and do so in as timely a fashion as I can. As I get them completed, the fics will be on my storyblog and linked here for all to see and (hopefully) enjoy.

I will also be taking donations. Donations are not mandatory. I will still do ~500 words for everybody as I can. However, donations will most definitely be appreciated, and I’m going to show my appreciation thusly:

  • If you donate any amount, you get two additional blocks of words to allocate as you see fit – to new prompts or existing ones. If you gave several prompts to begin with (as I would prefer for several reasons), my assumption will be to pick several and give one block to each unless you specify particular prompts for extension, although if I have difficulty with some, I may choose to make a piece longer instead if the words are that much easier to produce. Extending an existing work (if you donate after your first prompt is answered, for instance, or opt to extend someone else's) is generally a little more likely to work out than picking a prompt that hasn't been written on yet, just in case I can't make progress on it.
  • For every $5 (Canadian dollars) you donate, I will add another such package of words.

  • If you donate $10 or more, the scene of your choice from any completed prompt in this call (not necessarily your own if something else catches your eye) will receive a penciled and perhaps lightly-shaded illustration courtesy of quoting_mungo. You don't need to decide right away what you want to see illustrated, if you'd rather wait and see the finished product – indeed, I'd prefer it that way.

  • If you donate $35, bringing your base allotment to 10 blocks (1 free, 2 for donating, 7 at $5 ea), I will throw in another 10. This is enough for a short story of 10,000 words if they all get put to the same thing.
  • However, I will be capping work at 25 blocks per person. A single donation of $55 will get to that threshold (counting the total incentive; see below). Donations beyond that are of course appreciated, but I want to keep this session's work reasonably self-contained.
  • If total donations reach $50, I will complete at least two writing blocks for everyone who submits them, donor or not. Donors still get all their extra packets of words.

  • If the total meets or exceeds $100, I will complete at least three blocks for all prompters (plus the usual rewards for donors).

  • Finally, if you spread the word to a unique place, I will throw in an extra block (limit one per person). Your own LJ or a blog offsite count as "unique." If several people happen to signal-boost in the same community, though, only the first one who doesn't have any other qualifying signal-boosts gets credit. (That is, if A posts it on blog and on Community X, and later B only posts it on Community X, A gets credit for the blog and B for Community X.) LJ locations should give me a pingback; if the only place you list it is offsite, though, or if I've moved on from your prompts and don't seem to have noticed your pingback (maybe the bot was sick), please include a link to the post so I know about it. Please keep it appropriate, though - I don't want to be associated with spam (thus the one-per-person and once-per-venue limits).

What I Won’t Do
  • These are not commissions. If you donate, I will be grateful, and I will try to make a piece that you’ll enjoy, but the work will be done to my standards and the copyright will remain with me. If you want to point someone to a completed prompt, please link to it here or on my blog rather than reposting it yourself; the publicity is important to me.

  • I will not write with someone else’s existing characters, your own or otherwise. I have enough trouble getting into someone else’s headspace at the best of times; for something like this I simply cannot afford the time and energy it would take, to say nothing of legal issues if they're not your own personal characters.

  • I will not commit to hard kinks with which I am not already familiar. Kinks are hit-and-miss to begin with; I don’t want to promise something that I turn out to be unable to deliver.

What I Will Do
  • The default for a given prompt will be standalone characters for that prompt, with no relation to any other writing. This may change if I see a good opportunity to fit it in somewhere else.

  • I will do anthropomorphic animals (please stick to air-breathing vertebrates), humans, or standard fantasy races like elves, though they’re likely to get a unique slant. Default will be random furries, or humans. If you have a preference, say so in your prompt.

  • I will work in settings in which I have previously written, in this journal or on my storyblog. If the pre-existing stories are incomplete, I may ask for a reprompt in the event that the prompt covers things I want to get to in my main writing. This also includes settings which I co-author, principally I.C.Q. (Any standalone fiction set in ICQverse will be illustrated by default.)

  • With reservations (the “hesitation” kind, not the “book in advance” kind), I might work in existing settings which lend themselves to original characters, if I'm already familiar with the setting. This manner of writing doesn't really lend itself to the extensive research that would be required to fit into a new setting for me. If this happens, you're likely to get my own crazy head-canon, not necessarily a dead ringer for the official line – partly if not only because some authors sometimes seen to be downright crazy in the decisions they make regarding their own canons. Suggested tweaks to the canon may be a part of the prompt. (This might be best to avoid unless either you know me or you've seen me do work in that setting.)

  • I will do clean or adult material. If your prompt can be completed without being naughty, I will assume you want it clean unless you specifically say naughty is okay, or have given me a "naughty is okay" signal in the past and not since revoked it. Even then, I'll generally only do it if it makes sense to do so; I won't put in adult material for its own sake.

  • Your first block will always be from within your prompts. If you don't specify, that's also where I'll put any donor incentives. However, you're welcome to ask for an extension to another piece in this prompt call if it catches your eye.

  • If I’m stuck on your prompts, either overall or those you've specified for some degree of work, I may ask for a reprompt in order to have something I can work with.

Prompts open immediately, as mentioned above, and run for a week unless I get swamped. I will complete the writing as I can, but judging by last session I can average about five blocks a day; illustrations for any piece due to get them may take longer, as quoting_mungo is not me and I can’t speak for her time, but we’ll still try to get those done in a timely fashion as well.

Comment to this post with your prompts, please! You may submit a number of them (please do, in fact), and I will select at least one among them to complete (unless I’m completely stuck, at which point I’ll ask for reprompts). And, as said above, if you donate and don't specify how you want things arranged, I will pick up to three that I can work with, plus more depending on how much you toss in the jar.

When donating, do not refer to your specific prompts. Say only that you are donating for QuickFic session 3, or (since PayPal should fill that in) your LJ name or similar; or just leave the default stuff there. All details about what you want written should be in prompts here, not in PayPal, and all details of what prompts you want your donations to go to (if you have a preference) should similarly be put in comments here. If you do donate, A) thank you, B) be sure to include something that will tie your donation to your prompt comment, such as commenting with / editing your comment to include the transaction ID or sending me a message on LJ (I will try to remember to check the message centre regularly, especially if I can't readily link your donation to your prompts) or, as mentioned above, including your LJ ID with the donation on PayPal's end. If it's trivially easy this won't be necessary (either I know you or your email is obviously in line with your LJ login or some signature in your comment), though it's best to at least say you tossed something in the jar; that way if I can't link the donation to you I can ask for more detail.

Again, anonymous comments will be open.

Work will be done more or less in sequence: each prompter in turn, along with their donation rewards (if they donated when they first prompted), with after-prompting donations woven in according to when they arrived. Overall rewards (extra prompts for everybody) will stay at the end of the queue, and then will be done in prompt order, more or less.

Thank you in advance for your interest, and please spread the word!



( 28 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 24th, 2012 09:04 pm (UTC)
A couple of lines for now; one's short, one's fairly long and will likely only work used as inspiration (rather than being reproduced in its entirety as a line in story). I'll add more later when my brain's in a more helpful mood and might be willing to supply something not from a song. :)
  • "Nothing left but the note you got" - Line from Aqua's Freaky Friday
  • "But the dogs you say they fed you to | Lay their muzzles in your lap | And the lions that they led you to | Lie down and take a nap" - Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds Sweetheart Come
  • "May you live in interesting times" - Wikipedia says source unknown
Apr. 25th, 2012 01:41 am (UTC)
Nothing left but the note you got
"Five Little Words" (596 little words)
Apr. 25th, 2012 05:55 am (UTC)
Owch, poor guy! Nice story, but poor, poor guy.
Apr. 25th, 2012 12:34 am (UTC)
"That kid munched on the cockroach like it was a gummy bear." -Random person I overheard on the bus the other day. I THINK their name was Robyn.

"...But our princess is in another castle!" -Toad, Mario Brothers

Edited at 2012-04-25 12:36 am (UTC)
Apr. 27th, 2012 09:18 pm (UTC)
"...But our princess is in another castle!"
"Misplaced" (572 words)
Apr. 25th, 2012 02:23 am (UTC)
1) The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don't just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary.
--James D. Nicoll

2) I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet.
-Mohandas K. Gandhi (1869-1948)

3) Show me your friend and I will show you your character
(in Akan: kyereme woadamfo na menkyere wo wosuban.)
- Kwaku Boateng

I'm linking this on LJ, DW, and Facebook.
Apr. 30th, 2012 03:41 pm (UTC)
"I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet."
"Necessary Measures" (1045 words)
Apr. 25th, 2012 03:21 am (UTC)
"He always looked a little disappointed at the ende, though, almost as if he didn't want the swan brothers to turn back into humans again." -Flyaway, Lucy Christopher

"In a world full of people only some want to fly, isn't that crazy?" -Seal
Apr. 25th, 2012 03:24 am (UTC)
Also, I signal boosted you on my journal, here. http://avia.dreamwidth.org/93605.html
Apr. 25th, 2012 03:25 am (UTC)
Also, I signal boosted you on my journal, but it won't let me include the link, because it's marking me as spam. It's avia on Dreamwidth, it's the newest post right now.
May. 29th, 2012 04:11 pm (UTC)
Sorry for the delay. I was uncertain of how to approach this one for quite some time. I wound up taking it somewhat metaphorically.
"In a world full of people only some want to fly, isn't that crazy?" -Seal
"Wild Talent" (1169 words)
May. 30th, 2012 01:14 am (UTC)
Oh, wow! This turned out really lovely. Thank you!

I guess you have not written more about the Eight Stars Guild, because it is a one-shot? But I really like the idea of them.
May. 30th, 2012 09:38 pm (UTC)
I haven't, no; it's worth noting that the label of "one-shot" is kind of fluid - some so-called one-shots have in fact spawned a few sequels or prequels; it's certainly not a statement that I'll never do anything more in a given setting. But I don't currently have plans to do so.
Apr. 25th, 2012 09:31 am (UTC)
"For a man to help others with all his gifts and native strength: that is the noblest work." Oedipus, Oedipus Rex by Sophocles.

"It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak up and remove all doubt." Various, often attributed to Abraham Lincoln and/or Mark Twain

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." Attributed, possibly incorrectly, to Edmund Burke

"Know thy enemy and know thyself, and victory shall be yours." Sun Tzu, The Art of War

"Somebody is playing with my dick and it ain't me." - Det. Jonsey (John Goodman), Fallen - do as ye will with this one. >:)

Also: posted shoutouts on LJ and my FA page.

Edited at 2012-04-25 12:01 pm (UTC)
May. 30th, 2012 06:01 am (UTC)
"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
"Duty" (530 words)
May. 30th, 2012 10:37 pm (UTC)
And here's the other!
"Somebody is playing with my dick and it ain't me." - Det. Jonsey
"Virtuality" (NSFW; M/ambiguous, masturbation/oral, public; 593 words)
Apr. 25th, 2012 04:19 pm (UTC)
I"ll be linking on LJ & DW

01. "Stories wait for endings, but songs are brave things bold enough to sing when all they know is darkness." - To Write Love On Her Arms's Vision/Story

02. "You are fiction to the selves
who took other paths and choices.
They are fiction to you.

You’ve got a lot to learn from each other." - The Messiah's Handbook: Reminders for the Advanced Soul by Richard Bach

03. “We’re fickle, stupid beings with poor memories and a great gift for self destruction.”- Plutarch Heavensbee, Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

04. "That which seems the height of absurdity in one generation often becomes the height of wisdom in another." - Adlai E Stevenson

05. "All most of us want is for our boat to be lifted off dry ground to someplace new, someplace better. All most of us really want is to be loved, to be validated, to be held, to be heard. Maybe our costumes are different, maybe our interests are different, maybe our tortures were different. But the human condition is always the same. We want recognition. We want to be able to be who we are. We want to be real. An occasional hug shouldn’t be such a radical concept." - Writing from the Heart: Tapping the Power of Your Inner Voice by Nancy Slonim Aronie
Jun. 1st, 2012 07:24 pm (UTC)
"You are fiction to the selves
who took other paths and choices.
They are fiction to you.

You’ve got a lot to learn from each other."
"Visitation" (1061 words)
Apr. 25th, 2012 05:49 pm (UTC)
Several prompts for you to choose from, as I'm a quote-collecting fiend.
  • "The only person who never makes mistakes is the person who never does anything." -- Denis Waitley
  • "One person with a belief is equal to a force of ninety-nine with only interests." -- John Stuart Mill
  • "The spirit of creation is the spirit of contradiction. It is the breakthrough of appearances toward an unknown reality." -- Joan Cocteau
  • "Work as if you were to live a hundred years. Pray as if you were to die tomorrow." -- Benjamin Franklin
  • "No pain, no palm; no thorns, no throne; no gall, no glory; no cross, no crown."> -- William Penn

And I pimped this out on both my DW & LJ.
Jun. 4th, 2012 04:01 am (UTC)
"The only person who never makes mistakes is the person who never does anything."
"One Missed Shot" (1174 words)
Jun. 4th, 2012 04:47 am (UTC)
A caution about link-chasing: This piece is entirely SFW. Others in that category aren't.
Jun. 12th, 2012 06:44 pm (UTC)
Oh wow! that was fascinating! thank you!
Apr. 26th, 2012 12:48 am (UTC)
"If we listened to our intellect, we'd never have a love affair. We'd never have a friendship. We'd never go into business, because we'd be cynical. Well, that's nonsense. You've got to jump off cliffs all the time and build your wings on the way down."
-Ray Bradbury

May. 17th, 2012 03:36 am (UTC)
(This is the one that made the donation. The transaction ID at least on this side was 9LH97347BG4841408.)
Jun. 8th, 2012 06:09 pm (UTC)
Strange. I had no reason to doubt it, and I didn't know what else that string could be, but Paypal didn't show me anything resembling it.

At any rate, belated it may be, but here's my take on that. I don't know if Bradbury would find it to his liking, but I suppose, in some small way, this can stand as a tribute to him.

"Thinking Too Hard" (1024 words)
Jun. 8th, 2012 06:15 pm (UTC)
There will be more forthcoming, because I'm a derp.
Jun. 12th, 2012 05:55 pm (UTC)
Here's another, unrelated piece, taking things a bit more literally:

"Leap of Faith" (1131 words)
Apr. 29th, 2012 08:08 pm (UTC)
Not exactly the most uplifting of quotes, but they're what came to mind (and a quick search for Richard Feynman)

"Correlation does not imply causation... but it is suggestive!" (?)

"What is a man? Nothing but a miserable pile of secrets!" (Dracula in Castlevania SotN)

"Now, I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds." (J R. Oppenheimer quoting Bhagavad Gita in regards to the first nuclear bomb tests)

"On the infrequent occasions when I have been called upon in a formal place to play the bongo drums, the introducer never seems to find it necessary to mention that I also do theoretical physics." (Richard Feynman)

"Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts." (Richard Feynman)
( 28 comments — Leave a comment )