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FAQ for authors: PLEASE READ before submitting.

Discussion in 'SUBMIT YOUR STORIES HERE' started by dig420, Mar 22, 2016.

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  1. dig420

    dig420 HMFIC Staff Member Administrator

    We are going to be selective in what we publish. Yes, yes I know you can see stories that aren't formatted correctly, are missing sections etc and so on already published, but that is the result of having to import the stories multiple times to multiple different platforms. We think we've finally found our final solution now and we're going to be working on cleaning things up. If you're interested in helping, please feel free to contact us and volunteer ;)

    Minimum quality standards: Your story will NOT be published if these aren't met.

    1. Paragraphs. You must have some. A story without paragraphs isn't a story, it's just one long ass run-on sentence that nobody wants to read. Not even editors. It will just be deleted. How do I break a story up into paragraphs, you ask? It's simple.
    • When you start in on a new topic
    • When you skip to a new time
    • When you skip to a new place
    • When a new person begins to speak
    • When you want to produce a dramatic effect
    Thanks Writing Guide!*

    2. Conversations between characters must be properly formatted. It's not "Hi!" he said. "Hello!" he replied. "How are you Charlie?" "I'm good, how are you Frank?" Two characters speaking means that each speakers sentence is on a separate line, like so:

    "Hi Charlie!" said Frank.
    "Hello!" Charlie replied.
    "How are you Charlie?"
    "I'm good, how are you Frank?"

    Two characters speaking to each other are creating a dialogue, and dialogues have formatting rules to help the reader follow the conversation. Please observe them and consult the writing guide if you're unclear on how it's done. The link will be in the footnote.

    If you can't spell, use spellcheck. If you CAN spell, use spellcheck. It's just common courtesy to your readers. Any error can knock a reader out of that state of suspension of disbelief necessary to sustain a story's spell on the reader.

    4. Tell a story. Develop a character (or even two!). Just writing a sex scene detailing who put what where, how hard and for how long isn't enough to make an interesting story. We have to care, even just a little, about the characters involved before we can be interested in how long, how hard or how deep anything is stuck in their various orifices. The sex itself usually isn't the most interesting part of the story. Sex is just an animal act, happens in every farmyard around the world every day. It's why the sex happened, the context in which it occurred, who it happened to and who saw it. You get the point. I hope.

    5. Line breaks. We get so many stories that have two or more line breaks between sentences, and it's beyond annoying. You don't have to press return to end a sentence, the software will move on to the next line without any help at all when you get close to the edge, so DON'T DO IT. DO hit the return key when you're ready to begin a new paragraph. You can even do it twice.

    6. PUNCTUATION. YOU! MUST! HAVE! PUNCTUATION! Punctuation marks are the raised angry voices or the upward tone of a question, the stilted pause, the breath caught in the throat. It's impossible to get into the mind of your character without punctuation, and a story without punctuation is dull, dull, dull. Words can tell us what your character said, but punctuation tells us how she said it. Do you know what I mean? Do you know what I mean???? I'm asking you!!! Play with punctuation. Develop skill with punctuation. Learn what a semicolon is and why you should use it. It is absolutely essential to storytelling. My personal preference when it comes to commas and periods is one space after commas, two after periods. I think it makes text much more legible, but if you want to go wild and just use one space after a period I can't stop you. You bastard.

    7. Take your time. Don't rush. Go ahead and do a second draft, or a third. Let the story sit for a week and see if lightning strikes. Like anything else, a good story becomes better when you take your time and do it right, instead of quick. We're not going anywhere. We'll wait.

    8. Use a thesaurus. Use a dictionary. Read a style guide. Your words are an expression of your personality. You can tell the difference between John Fowles and Ernest Hemingway before you read two paragraphs. Take pride in what you produce. Don't use 5 words where two will do the job. Don't use the same words over and over. Your wife isn't just slutty. She's brazen. Lewd. Shameless. Immodest. Outrageous. Immoral. Lascivious. Obscene. Salacious, even. She didn't just fuck in your marital bed. She defiled it. Desecrated it. Dishonored it. Corrupted and debased it. Words are fun. Words are powerful. Learn to use words.

    That's it. This probably would have been more aesthetically pleasing if I could have come up with an even 10 points and maybe I'll come up with a few more later, but this is a good starting point. These are the MUST HAVE elements of a story before it will be published. For a lot of you, this stuff is second nature and of course, you don't need to be told. For many of you, a few minutes reading this and a little effort practicing these points will do you and your writing skills a world of good. Please help make our job easier, proofread your work, and bring it to our attention for approval only after you've made it ready to publish as is. There is a simple system for getting your story published. Read the thread on prefixes in this forum to help everything go smoothly.

    We are looking for editors. If your writing skills are good enough that you can critique and help those who may not be so fortunate and you're interested in doing so, please send me a private message to be considered as an editor.

    Some good links:
    http://www.saidsimple.com/content/100785/online-writing-guide - very good guide, short and to the point, designed to help you get up and running quickly.
    http://www.thesaurus.com - just what it says, an online thesaurus. Invaluable if you want to make your prose really sing.
    http://www.dictionary.com - If I want to make sure I get the right word, or spell the right word correctly, this is where I go.
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2016
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