and Character Help Circle (The Stew Pot)
members Cailin & Deedlit have started The Stew Pot, a Plotting and
Character Help Circle, which can be found on the General
circle has four simple rules:
- We're operating on an open membership basis.
means anyone and everyone is welcome to join in, post your plot and/or
character problems or questions, offer suggestions to problems or
questions others have posted, etc.
You don't have to sign up to join in.
- Posts must relate to the current subject - no going randomly off the
you want to rant, go to the rant board.
This circle is for plot and character development and helping
solve related problems - period.
- No personal attacks.
is a general policy on all of Holly's boards.
Feel free to comment on a character's or plot's shortcomings, but
please don't flame the writer. If
you feel criticism is merited, please be as positive as possible and
suggest ways to fix the problem. We're
here to help each other, after all.
Maybe someone will return the favor when you're stuck between (cliche
warning!) a rock and a hard place.
- No copyediting.
circle isn't about grammar, revising or other aspects of writing.
There are other circles for those topics, or, if you can't find
one to suit you, start a circle of your own for any writing-related
purpose. This is a circle
for us to help each other hammer out plot and character ideas.
new Section for Game Development!
Holly set up the gaming section on April 7th, so it hasn't been around
long. There are both public and a private boards. The public board is for
general questions about writing RPG material, such as world adventure
plotting, some rules discussion, and world building. RPG
The private board is reserved for copyrightable works that are already in
progress. For instance, Jennifer Brinn is working on a FUDGE Deryni game
for Grey Ghost Games. And Christina Stiles is working on a solicited D20
adventure for a company called Atlas Games, plus she'll be posting
products her own company, Bizzaro Games, will be producing.
we could all use a bit of help in the organizing department, and that we
would be more productive if we were more organized, we now have a forum to
both discuss matters organizational, and to participate in a week-by-week
update in our progress.
Second Dare of the Year!
have started a second dare, which will run from April 1 -- May 31st.
About 50 people are participating, and many are doing very well!
Come to the Games and
Contest Board to see who has joined in, and be sure
to check out the special page where weekly results are posted!
and Taxes by Holly Lisle
Ides of April were upon us, so it seems appropriate to mention
Holly's short story "Death and Taxes."
If you haven't read it, it gives a whole new slant on the idea of
paying your taxes. You can
find it on the SF & Fantasy Board and it's well worth the read.
I'm sure she'll get it published somewhere (Let us know when and
where, Holly!). Check
Writer's Exercises are going strong!
you check out the Workshops
and Exercises board on a regular basis?
I highly recommend it. There
is a new exercise posted every day, and they are always interesting.
especially interesting when a number of people comment on a post, such as
when I listed a first line exercise and got a number of responses. I had written 'I opened the door to see a man dressed in a
somewhat shabby suit, he said, "Have I got a book for you!" and
held up a book titled, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Necromancy.'
That posting netted ten comments, although four of those were my
replies. Still, it gave me a
very warm feeling as a writer to receive such recognition.
one of Holly's: The gorilla leaned up against the bars of his cage,
grinned at me, and whispered, "There's a sawbuck in it for you if you
help me get the hell out of here."
one of Bob Billing's: I woke up cold, hungry, frightened and not entirely
sure which planet I was on.
one got a comment from Holly: "Damn. I hate it when that
are your favorites? Feel free
to write to Jim@HollyLisle.com
and send me your favorite first lines to be printed in this column.
All first lines printed here are with author permission.
here's what it all means...
wonder what all those "buzz word" abbreviations mean? If you've been online a while, you probably learned by asking
and felt a little foolish admitting your ignorance to those who seemed to
take what they typed for granted. For
those who are new or too shy to ask, here is Jim's guide to the shortcut
jargon commonly used online (some are used more often than others, and
there may be some I missed):
= away from keyboard
= be right back or bath room break
and brb are often used together, separated by a space, with the same meanings,
although somewhat redundant, and probably brought to you by the
of Redundancy Department.
= by the way
or cul8r = see you later
= for cryin' out loud
= for what it's worth
= gotta go pee
= if I recall correctly (no relation to Internet relay chat)
= in my humble opinion
= in my opinion
= Internet relay chat, a program for using chat rooms
via a chat server
= in real life (as opposed to the online or writing life)
= no problem or, if you're a bit more dramatic, no problemo
= on the other hand
is a whole series on laughing, presumably because the humans online like
to laugh (more than the aliens, animals, interstellar felons, lawyers,
politicians or businessmen).
= laugh out loud or lots of laughs (you're laughing louder if it's
= laughing my ass off (funny)
= rolling on floor laughing (really funny)
= rolling on floor laughing my ass off (very, very funny)
= rolling on floor laughing my ass off peeing in my pants (I'm asphixiating)
= same stuff different day (alternately: same stuff different dimension)
actually originated in the old days of personal computers (in the late
70's, before IBM PCs _or_ Macs) when ssdd stood for "single side
double density" in relation to the old 8" floppy disks that
were *truly* floppy.
later gave it the more common usage.
There are vulgar variants that mean more or less the same thing. We won't print them here.
Use your imagination;
they're pretty childish anyway.
= ta ta for now
I miss any abbreviations? Please
write to Jim@HollyLisle.com and
them in a future issue of Vision. ttfn!