clauderainsrm asked me to write a few words about LJ idol. Naturally I ignored his request, but then he threatened me. He said if I don’t write something about LJ Idol within the next hour that he will:
a) De-friend me on LJ
b) He will make a future topic on idol asking everyone to write about the flaws in my writing
c) Tell everyone what REALLY rolled out of my purse in the airport.
I thought that was pretty fucked up of him, particularly the third part. But then again, he DID carry my luggage for me which in my book was quite a charming thing to do. Even better then that, clauderainsrm created a phenomenon on livejournal. He is the mastermind behind therealljidol
therealljidol started out as a smaller writing contest a few years back. As the seasons progressed, it grew significantly. Not only did the community itself accumulate, but many of the writers who participated cultivated as well; developing themselves as writers while discovering parts of them that they didn’t know existed.
You see, clauderainsrm runs this contest exceptionally, and crafted it to bring people together, create strong bonds, and lasting friendships. Not only is he willing to support each contestant while remaining fair, he has an evil brain that constructs new twists and turns each week which keeps the contestants and fans at the edge of their seats.
Some have even stated that LJ Idol has changed their lives, and I am proud to say it has changed mine. I do take LJ Idol very seriously, and now with Season 6 opening up, I thought I would state a few things that will help everyone excel a little better in LJ Idol- at least get the most out of the experience.
Season 5 was the first time I decided to participate in idol. When I wrote my first entry, I was incredibly nervous, and at that point I didn’t know what I was doing. One nice girl offered to read my entry and give some points. To be quite honest, I don’t remember her LJ name- although I recall “tramp” was part of her name, and that is probably the reason why I liked her so much.
She felt that one of the problems with my first entry was that I included the name of the topic within my entry. She told me that a good entry doesn’t need to have the topic written out in it- let the reader sit and think why you choose to tell the story you did based on the prompt.
Many of you don’t agree, but I certainly do. I feel that the most quality entries are not only ones that keep me engaged, but they are the ones that make me think. Therefore, I would like to share some of my own tips with you.
* Do not include meta in your entry. To put it bluntly, nobody is concerned with how you feel about the topic, and how you came up with your post. Readers lose interest fast, especially now that they have over 200 entries to read and judge on their spreadsheets. My advice is if you really feel an urge to talk about how much you think a certain topic is as stimulating as a mouthful of sawdust and water, write a separate entry and explain it. Also, make it friends only!
* Be nice to everyone. It will help enhance the experience (which can get certainly stressful) if you come out with new friends. Comment on peoples entries; tell them what you liked about it.
* Stay away from poetry. Trust me on that one.
* If you are going to write fiction, make sure it is good. Check out darkprism‘s work to see an example of good fiction.
* Don’t recycle your work. People want to see new and fresh. Part of this contest is writing your ass off, under pressure. People want to see you develop.
* Don’t be afraid to push your limits, and everyone else’s. Take some major risks. If you do it right, it will be worth it. Write your entry like nobody is going to read it, then make modifications. I had a few people de-friend me after I posted this entry, but to be honest, it was one of the ones I am the most pleased with and even though it is fiction, some friends told me it was the most truthful and honest one I have written.
* Switch varieties every week. I admit that people do like to read depressing stories on idol as those do generate many comments. However after awhile, people will be able to predict how you will interpret the topic, and the subject you will write about. Instead of writing something sad every week, try switching it up. Write something funny the following week. Then try fiction the week after. Write something heart-warming the next time. Just don’t write poetry.
I think that it is good to allow your readers and fans to wonder, what your creative mind will come up with each week. Make them wonder, make them click on your entry first.
* I would personally advise you to not ask your friends list for votes every week. At least hold off at the beginning. I would save the request for help until you really need it. Think of it like this, there are going to be over 25 something weeks this season (this is a GUESS I have no inside info), and if your friends list see’s 20+ of your own posts (not to mention other friends) asking for votes they may get annoyed and not click your box. If you really do feel an urge to ask each week, attach it to the end of an entry.
* Most of all, have fun! Don’t sweat the small stuff. Everybody has different tastes, and not everyone will like what you do every week. Someone once commented on one of my entries to tell me (in a much nicer way) that I am a whore and I should wear knee-pads and yell “Curb Service! I told him sex sells. He didn’t vote for me. But you won’t excel in the voting every week and that is okay. Just have fun.
Season 6, I wish you all the best of luck! I am excited to watch, and I will be voting. =)
(to comment on this, please go to the original entry)