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SIYE Time:16:26 on 25th April 2017

News
Challenges Will Be Returning

Pending official approval, GinnyWeasley777 and GHL have agreed to assume the mantle of SIYE challenge coordination.

Normally, the new challenge cycle would have started on July 1, however GW & GL have proposed to instead announce the next challenge on August 1, and to plan to run three challenges every year, on four month cycles (start dates of August 1, Dec. 1 and April 1).

Here's an example of how a proposed challenge cycle would run:

  - Aug. 1.  New challenge topic is announced

  - Nov. 15  Submission deadline; judging begins

  - Dec. 1   Winners are announced, and the next new challenge topic is revealed

 

Tentatively, we would like to have an ongoing solicitation for new challenge topics within the News forum...  starting right now!  Below are a few of the topics discussed in last month's challenge News item.  Please either tell us which one(s) you enjoy most either as a reader or an authour, or else please suggest new candidates!

Running List of Possible Topics

   1.  James and Lily Potter are still alive.  Write a brief story involving the two of them meeting Ginny.

   2.  Lily Luna decides she's had enough of living under her parent's spotlight and takes off to another country. She doesn't tell anyone where she's gone.

   3.  Harry and Ginny go out on a bender. The next morning they notice that something is missing... Uh oh...

   4.  Write about a place that is special to Harry and Ginny.

   5.  Write about a secret source of tensions at the Burrow

   6.  Years into their marriage, Ginny discovers something surprising about Harry. 

   7.  James, Albus and Lily Luna are throwing a long-anticipated retirement party for their illustrious parents. Help everyone celebrate with some stories of our two hero's extraordinary and unconventional careers.

   8.  Harry ran away for all the wrong reasons. Ginny has finally tracked him down. What happens next?

   9.  Someone is going on a magical creature hunt. The challenge would be to tell why they are hunting the creature, do they find it, and tell about the journey.

  10.  Seeing names on the Potter Family tapestry left Harry with more questions than answers.  He begins to do some research.  What interesting stories does he uncover?

  11.  Really wicked topic suggested by *you*

ghl on 2016.07.07 - 11:48AM ()

Comments



RighT3rantZ came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.07 - 02:09PM to say:

Random idea. Harry and Ginny go out on a bender. The next morning Harry's firebolt has gone missing. Dude, where is my broomstick?



BigFatMaybe came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.07 - 02:38PM to say:

I would be very happy if you two keep the Challenge alive! This sounds pretty good, the only downside is that it starts during a time a lot of people are on holiday, but that's no problem, seeing as the deadline is only November 15th. As for the suggestions, I don't really like number 1 at all, since it's really restrictive. Number 3 is obviously a reference to Cursed Child, and I hate that play with a passion. Number 2 is the best here, I think. It doesn't specify a time period, and doesn't really restrict you to anything. It got me thinking about possible scenarios to write about immediately. Anyway, lastly I would like to thank you for going through all this trouble to keep the Challenge alive. I appreciate it.



PhoenixFeather2 came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.07 - 03:47PM to say:

Glad the challenges are back. I actually like #3, but it seems like it would require really long stories. Alternative topic: Lily Luna decides she's had enough of living under her parent's spotlight and takes off to another country. She doesn't tell anyone where she's gone.



GHL came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.07 - 03:59PM to say:

Ah -- a bit of feedback already! Wonderful! That is the sort of fuel that can hopefully propel the challenge.

We return again to the concern about undue constraints, and I hope an open forum will dispel them through casual back-and-forth clarification/negotiation. I think we all agree that freedom and creativity are important; indeed Sir Ollivander told us that he always intended to accept stories that gave even a basic hint of lip-service to the challenge concept.

Sometimes the wording of a suggestion might convey unintentional limitations, but we also occasionally fall prey to our own instincts for second-guessing. For example, number 3 set up a scenario that was indeed inspired by 'The Cursed Child' but left the field wide-open to charge off in just about any direction. Similarly, number 1 was conceived as a simple 'point-of-view' shift to extract anything from the seven books away from Harry's third-person omniscient to another perspective.

Either way, thank you for your quick response BigFatMaybe -- your preference has been noted!

RighT3rantZ -- interesting idea. In light of the previous paragraphs, I might broaden things a bit though. Along the lines of "Harry and Ginny go out on a bender. The next morning they find that something is missing... Uh oh..."

PhoenixFeather2 -- yes, you're right about Number 3, aren't you? We could narrow it down to something a lot more focused, like "Albus Potter and Scorpio have just disappeared. Whut the...??" And sure -- the Lily Luna scenario works fine too!

Is it just me, or are a whole lot of things and/or people suddenly going missing around here?





FloreatCastellum came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.07 - 04:49PM to say:

Delighted the challenge will be back! I like number 1 but feel it could be broadened slightly. Perhaps, write about what another character was doing while [canon event] was happening. I feel like 3 is too much of a nod and a wink to Cursed Child. I'm actually one of the rare few who is excited about the play and find all the bashing rather depressing. At least until the script is out I think we should avoid references to it. I like theme-type challenges. Something like - Write about a place that is a place that is special to Harry and Ginny. Or, a secret causes tensions at the Burrow. Or, years into their marriage, Ginny discovers something surprising about Harry.



CharmHazel came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.07 - 05:41PM to say:

I like the idea in reference to Cursed Child but I think the suggestion as open as it is, may be a little difficult to write for at the moment. I have seen the play (and it is without a doubt one of the best theatrical productions I have ever seen) and I feel the sheer number of missing moments have good potential for challenges. Also missing moments from the book could be a good challenge. I know some have been done but there seem to be a fair few that have not.



ginnyweasley777 came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.07 - 05:45PM to say:

Some good suggestions here - just what we're wanting! Keep them coming. :)



Fuzzy Bear came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.07 - 07:56PM to say:

An idea inspired by one of my favorite movies: Ron and Hermione fall in love but Harry suspects that the Weasleys are only after their money. He takes Hermione back to their country and Ginny plans on how she is going to give Harry a piece of her mind since she was the only only one who knew of Harry's suspicions. Alternate Universe.



Gin110881 came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.08 - 04:05AM to say:

I am not a writer, but still want to contribute my 5 Knuts. Indeed, it would be nice if the challenges could be continued. I don't know if AU are stories allowed. On the other hand I think canon is only what is written in the books, right? In the post-DH Stories it's almost always about Aurors and professional Quidditch, and at the moment it seems that about 90% of the stories on siye are such post-DH Stories. (No offence intended!) Wouldn't it be interesting to see, what other life paths the Siye authors could imagine for our beloved couple, and maybe their friends. This is an almost unexplored territory, and therefore certainly a challenge to a writer, isn't it? And the ideas could, maybe, be a source for accompanying longer stories.



GHL came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.08 - 07:56AM to say:

Continues to be great stimulating discussion -- thank you all!

Several of us (myself, Fuzzy Bear, and Martin) put forward concepts that go beyond the standard challenge parameters. Ideally the story should be less than 20,000 words, and should be 'complete' in the sense of having a discrete, self-contained intro / plot / climax / conclusion package. This definitely does not preclude prequels, and sequels, and I think we would always (in the world of fanfic) make room for good missing moments.

So in light of this, I would definitely agree with what CharmHazel suggested, and I also think that Martin's suggestion of challenges that cater to alternate futures for Harry and Ginny (i.e., non-Auror Harry; non-Quidditch Ginny) is fine, although the precise challenge phrasing to elicit this might need some tweaking. I can imagine something like "James, Albus and Lily Luna are throwing a long-anticipated retirement party for their illustrious parents. Help everyone celebrate with some stories of our two hero's extraordinary and unconventional careers."

I'm just brainstorming, of course. Feel free to twist and reshape!

Fuzzy Bear, your idea has the depth and detail of a long novella or full-length novel, which will take it a bit out of 'Challenge' territory. Could you hone in on some subplot or situation that might encapsulate a key piece of the concept? It could be something like, "Harry ran away for all the wrong reasons. Ginny has finally tracked him down. What happens next?





potterfan2008 came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.09 - 05:42PM to say:

Love that the Challenges will be back! I like all of the suggestions made, but I think it would be difficult to incorporate anything from 'Cursed Child' yet. James and Lily alive would be an interesting challenge, but hard to fit in 20 K words. I like the idea of the non-traditional careers. It could be looking at their training or AU were one meets the other during training. I was thinking of a Magical Creatures challenge. Someone is going on a magical creature hunt - it could be the Weasley children at the Burrow, they could be helping Luna, it could involve Charlie. The type of magical creature would be up the author it could be imaginary or real. The challenge would be to tell why they are hunting the creature, do they find it, and tell about the journey.



Miss Gryffindor came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.09 - 06:26PM to say:

A suggestion for the Challenge... Just seeing names on the Potter Family tapestry left Harry with more questions than answers. So family genealogy becomes his number one hobby. Harry learns a lot more than just when and where a person was born., married, and died. This can go in so many ways.



mdauben came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.11 - 12:42PM to say:

Great to hear the Challenge is returning and I really like some of these ideas! Now, we just need to step up and actually *participate* to make this work. ;-)



BkRmGrl87 came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.12 - 02:04AM to say:

I loves these ideas. Challenges are always immensely enjoyable to read (as I am more of a reader than a writer) so I'm excited to see that they are back. Hopefully we can see a lot more activity, but by the looks in this strand of comments the challenge might have a rising interest again. I know there have been several time travel stories (and challenges), and I don't really have any grand ideas here, but it would be fun to see another time travel themed challenge in future.



Gin110881 came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.12 - 04:44AM to say:

I just want to drop two more Knuts into the idea pot. 1st Knut: An idea inspired by a collection of one-shots I've read. Describe another moment in the books where Harry and Ginny could have gotten together before they did in the canon story line. It moment could be an occasion described in the books or a missing moment. 2nd Knut: Harry and Ginny break-up after Dumbledores funeral was faked for obvious reasons. They secretly were in contact as often as possible during the horcrux hunt (in person and/or via magical communication). I've read this scenario twice before, and there is a wonderful version of this tale by Hippothestrowl, but I nevertheless think it could be a good challenge to come up with different versions how the two of them remained in contact and managed to keep it a secret.



BigFatMaybe came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.13 - 10:03AM to say:

Quick suggestion: why not open a strawpoll and let people vote on which topic they would like to write about?



GHL came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.13 - 01:36PM to say:

Yes, I agree with the idea of voting. There are well over a dozen good ideas now, and we need to narrow down to one for Aug. 1, with the expectation that other good ideas will be a high priority for the Dec. 1 challenge.

I need to confer with GinnyWeasley777 to see just how to do this, but I expect the most practical way will be right here in an open forum like this. The SIYE secret ballot is likely not going to work for this for a variety of technical reasons.

If anyone is reading this right now, please feel free to do a bit of advance poll-skewing by letting us know which of the 10 earlier suggestions you might like, or additionally the most recent ideas by BkRmGrl87 and Gin110881.





pleurocoelus came out of the woodwork on 2016.07.15 - 10:15AM to say:

Yay! the challenge is back. My muse has been pouting lately, but I will try to enter this one.


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