due South Seekrit Santa Exchange 2011! Eight years of awesomeness!
(Closed, Unmoderated, Gift Exchange Challenge)
Welcome to dS Seekrit Santa!
This is a seasonal fannish exchange: you write a story or make some art or a vid; you get some art or a vid or a story in return. Because it's an exchange, it's important to get your contribution posted ON TIME. Because it's a seekrit exchange, it's important not to talk about what you made before the Big Reveal on New Years' Day.
So here's how it works. You sign up, telling us specific info about what kind of art, vid or story you want and what kinds of contributions you'll create. Lots of other people sign up, too. The Database makes matches between what everyone wants to receive and what everyone is willing to create. Then we send you an email with your assignment and send the other people emails with their assignments, and then you make your gift by the deadline, and all of the other people make their gifts by the deadline, and then it's Christmas Day and there are lots of presents to open! And nobody knows who made them and there is some fun speculation and usually recommendations, and then on New Years Day the creators are revealed and—well, it's fun!
Please keep in mind other challenges you may have committed to for the holiday season before you sign up, and make sure you have time in your schedule to devote to creating your contribution for dS Seekrit Santa. Likewise, once you sign up for dS Seekrit Santa, please remember to accommodate that obligation as you are tempted by fun, sparkly holiday challenges later in the year!
Please remember that your assignment is a holiday gift for a fellow fan, and treat their request the way you would like someone else to treat yours. Try to produce the best work that you can, and meet the deadline!
How do I sign up?
Go to the sidebar and click on the 'Signup Form' link. Fill out the form.
But I'm not an AO3 member?
No problem. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll rustle up an invite for you.
How do I stay in touch?
You can email email@example.com with any questions.
The mods will post reminders and other notices in the due South Seekrit Santa Discussion livejournal. Please friend or watch it so you know what's going on.
What if I want a story about, or involving a one-off or minor character?
Select 'Other(s)' from the list of characters, and then include the name of the character(s) in the 'Descriptions' box.
What if my preferred pairing/threesome/moresome isn't on the list?
You can either select the closest pairing and add a modifier in the description section, or list the pairing in the 'Optional Tags' box.
What about 'Dear Santa' letters?
If you want to give your Seekrit Santa some direction by including a theme, a plot, a location, bits of dialogue, etc., you may. We will post a master Dear Santa letters post in the due South Seekrit Santa Discussion livejournal, and you can link to or paste your letter in the comments. HOWEVER, your Seekrit Santa is not bound by these optional suggestions, ONLY by your pairing/character and media requests.
How do I post my story?
Again, follow this nifty tutorial. If you have any questions or hassles, contact the mods.
How do I post art or a vid?
Because AO3 can't handle these forms of fanworks at the moment, we will host them on the old dSSS server, courtesy of Sprat. More instructions will be posted on the due South Seekrit Santa Discussion livejournal closer to posting date.
I don't have a beta/can't find a beta.
There will be a beta-call post on the due South Seekrit Santa Discussion livejournal. Keep an eye out for it.
What do I do if I can't finish my assignment in time?
PLEASE contact the mods AS FAR AHEAD OF THE DEADLINE AS POSSIBLE, so that we can assign a pinch-hitter. It would be sad if someone didn't have a present to open on Christmas morning.
Can I sign up to be a pinch-hitter?
Keep an eye out for our "request for pinchhitters" post in the due South Seekrit Santa Discussion livejournal.
Stories must be at least 1000 words. dSSS has a traditionally high quality standard and expects fic to have been beta-read. If the mods consider your fic requires it, you may be asked to correct/rewrite your fic or it may be removed from the challenge.
Vids must be at least 1.5 minutes long.
Visual art is not as easy to quantify, but basically we want to see contributions equal in effort and time to a well-crafted 1,000 word story. So if you make icons, we're looking for sets of ten, rather than a single one; if you are drawing a sketch, it should be reasonably detailed work.
Contributions do NOT have to have a holiday theme. In dSSS we only use the term "Santa" in its most generic sense of "Gift bearer." Please be aware that your recipient's Dear Santa letter may specifically request you avoid holiday themes.
You MUST make something that includes at least one of your recipient's requested pairings or characters. You may not contribute anything that includes any of the three things listed as off limits by your recipient.
Assignments are confidential until creators' names are revealed on New Year's Day. You should not discuss your gift in your Journal(s), Twitter, etc., or reveal details that might identify you as the creator. Please don't discuss your gift at all with other participants in Seekrit Santa.
That means getting a beta for your work can be a bit tricky. Ideally, your beta should not be participating in Seekrit Santa; however, the main rule is the recipient of your gift should never serve as beta. There will be a post at the Discussion Community where people can volunteer as or ask for beta, too.
What You Want Created For You:
You can make up to three requests of your santa, each one specifying a different pairing or character if you want, though this is by no means required. If you are requesting art or vids, please make sure to include AT LEAST ONE story request -- as yet, writers far outnumber visual artists, so we want to make sure you have a non-art option, just in case.
What You Are Willing To Create:
Tell us all of the pairings/characters you are willing to write, draw, vid, etc (for slash, femslash, and het). For gen, tell us all of the characters you are willing to focus on in your piece. If you say "ANY" we will take you at your word.
Tell us what kind of gift(s) you are willing to contribute: stories, digital art (icon sets, mood themes, banners, etc), drawings, manips or vids.
Deadline to enter is 11:59 p.m. CDT, Wednesday 19 October 2011. Please make sure we have your form by then.
We will send out all assignments by 11:59 p.m., CDT, Monday 24 October 2011.
Gifts will be due by 11:59 p.m. CST, Sunday 18 December . If you CANNOT finish your gift by the deadline, the sooner you let us know, the better—that way we can find a pinch hitter for you.