• Member Since 11th Mar, 2012
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GaPJaxie


It's fanfiction all the way down.

More Blog Posts194

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    Read More

    90 comments · 1,162 views
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Feb
12th
2018

"The Next Generation" Writing Contest (With Prizes!) · 3:48am Last Monday

I'm going to be sappy, and then I'm going to be cool, and then there will be money in it for you.

I gotta be honest guys. I really love this fandom. Seriously you have no idea. This fandom taught me that being weird is okay. It's where I learned to write. It's where I made the first thing in my life I was actually proud of creating (Siren Song). It's where I made friends I will have for the rest of my life. Also Rarity is pretty cool and I have a plushie of her.

But the show only has so many seasons left in it. I don't think that the fandom will die when MLP Gen 4 does. There's too much life here! It will change though. Just like the show changed a lot from Season 1 to Season 6, but the fandom held together and made a lot of cool things. We even survived when they introduced Twilight 2 Starlight. And that was a big deal!

Whatever this fandom ends up being in the future, I want it to have that same awesome spirit that drew me into writing pony fiction in the first place: the great writers, the welcoming community, and the A-plus content. I mean, come on. The comments on most stories here are actually positive and constructive. On the internet! That's pretty damn weird and I like it.

So, screw melancholy! Change is not bad. And to prove it, I've decided to host a little competition. Which makes it time for...

"THE NEXT GENERATION" CONTEST

Hosted by the illustrious Roger Dodger on The Writeoff Page, the purpose of this contest is to prove that this fandom don't need no Generation 4 to be awesome. Come Generation 5 or whatever else Hasbro produces, we'll still be writing awesome things and being awesome people.

But first, let's get to why you're all here...

The Prizes

  • FIRST PLACE -- $200 USD
  • SECOND PLACE -- $100 USD
  • THIRD PLACE -- $50 USD
  • Honorable Mention -- A custom made pendant by Not_A_Hat, with the feathered quill of victory on one side and your name/handle on the other. Goes to the story that didn't place but that the judges thought deserved to be called out.


    It's also a keychain!

  • Best Characterization -- A hand made glasswork by Bloons3 with the best pony's cutie mark on it.
  • Best Worldbuilding -- A hand made glasswork by Bloons3 with the worst pony's cutie mark on it.

The Judges

For those of you who aren't familiar with Writeoff.me, it has a really cool system!

  • All stories are anonymous. Judges cannot see who wrote what until after the contest is over.
  • After all the stories are in, everyone who entered (yes, everyone!) will get a handful of stories to rank best to worst. That will narrow it down to ten finalists.
  • All ten finalists will get a detailed review and feedback from each of our three finalist judges.
  • The judges vote, and winners are assigned.
  • Once the winning stories are announced, the veil of anonymity drops, and we get to see who wrote what!

And our three finalist judges are...

GaPJaxie, author of Siren Song, and also literally this blog post.

TSiren Song
Bioshock meets MLP in this psychological thriller, where Celestia's new faithful student, Siren Song, must discover the truth behind the city beneath the waves. Arriving in pursuit of Twilight, Siren finds herself trapped in a city of horrors.
GaPJaxie · 187k words  ·  592  17 · 11k views

Cold in Gardez, author of All the Mortal Remains, and other things that make you cry.

EAll the Mortal Remains
Twilight Sparkle discovers an urn, and a decade's worth of questions, in the ashes of her library.
Cold in Gardez · 9k words  ·  1,783  21 · 14k views

Titanium Dragon, "The Boss Monster of FiMFiction." The mean American Idol judge of tiny horses!

EDying to Get There
None of Twilight's friends would be silly enough to believe a newspaper article that claims she was killing herself every time she teleported, right?
Titanium Dragon · 4.8k words  ·  2,828  65 · 22k views

The Rules

  1. Do not talk to judges about your story before the contest is over, or otherwise compromise your anonymity. This contest uses blind judging to keep everything fair. Letting the judges know who-wrote-what is cheating.
  2. All stories must in some way relate to the prompt "The Next Generation." You can interpret it as literally or figuratively as you like, but there has to be some kind of link.
  3. The contest is hosted on the fandom site Writeoff.me. All story submissions go through there.
  4. From the date the contest is announced (Feb 12th), you have exactly one month to get your submissions in. All stories must be submitted to writeoff.me by March 12th.
  5. The minimum length is 3,000 words. The maximum length is 12,000 words.
  6. Mature content is allowed, but porn and snuff are not. While there are no explicit content guidelines, if the primary appeal of your story is that it's titillating or gruesome, you will not place.
  7. Multiple entries are allowed, but any single author can only win one cash prize.

There is one other rule. One other tiny, niggling little rule. Because you may ask: "But, GaPJaxie, why host this on a site other than FiMFiction? Why not just host it here?"

Well you see, FiMFiction could not accept this content. Because, honoring of theme of the event, this fandom really can produce great things without help from Hasbro's Gen 4. That's right. The last contest rule is...

Original fiction only.

All stories must be fiction not dependent on work under U.S. copyright. You may write something about a potential Generation 5 of My Little Pony if you want, but if you do, you may not use characters or settings from previous generations of the show, including Generation 4

The Mentors

Finally, if you get stuck or need help, we have some volunteers!

Writeoff.me has a Discord server right here! And on that server, there is a room called #Mentors, where Pascoite, NikitaKitten, and others have volunteered to hang out and give writers a hand. They can help you if you get stuck, act as a sounding board for ideas, or maybe do a little light proofreading if they have time.

Mentors are basically just a buddy to bounce ideas off. They aren't judges, and they don't have any special info (except their awesome knowledge of writing). They can even enter the contest themselves if they want! The only thing that makes them special is that because they don't vote in the contest EVER you can reveal to them which story is yours without breaking your anonymity.

Also, they're entirely decent people, and a source of excellent advice. I highly recommend them.

Now get out there, get to writing, and have fun!

Report GaPJaxie · 1,162 views ·
Comments ( 90 )

I look forward to seeing what people come up with!

So just for clarity, fics submitted don't have to have anything to do with ponies at all?

All stories must in some way relate to the prompt "The Next Generation."

Oh, god dammit. I’ve been saving up and workshopping a massive G4.5 fic treatment to be written after G4 ends, and now here you go fucking up my plans already. There’s no way my shit’s ever gonna fit in 12,000 words. It’s supposed to represent a full 13-episode season! What the he-

Original fiction only.

... oh. Oh, word. Never mind. Forget I said anything.

I don't get the prompt or the original fiction only rule

Clarify for me please?

you monSTERS

4794827
Alright, then. I might have to see if I've got any brain cells that don't have ponies in them.

4794825
It's really best if they don't!

This seems difficult. But definitely interesting

Oh hey, that's a cool thing...

4794837
The prompt "The Next Generation" is just that - a few words intended to serve as, well, a prompt. It can be taken in any which way.

Original fiction means "works not dependent on works under US copyright". GaPJaxie is making a semi-exception in that someone could at least make use of the idea of the My Little Pony franchise, but if they were to do so, they couldn't use anything - characters, settings, ect. - from previous My Little Pony generations. So no elements of harmony, no Twilight Sparkle, no Tirek, no Rainbow Dash dressing in style, ect.

But it doesn't have to be pony related. It can be anything. That's why we're not running it on this website, because this is a pony fiction website, and the entries don't have to be pony related at all. They can be wholly original works, with nothing whatsoever to do with anything.

Note that the "copyright" rule means that you can make use of some very old stuff - for instance, if you wanted to write something that in some way involved Greek mythology, you could. But you couldn't write something based on Marvel's Thor comic book, as that is under copyright.

My mind immediately went to Star Trek. But with Ponies. Though that has been done a lot here.

That original fiction only rule seems like an odd choice to me. There is so much that can be done (and a lot that has previously been done) on a "The Next Generation" prompt building from G4.
Heck, the prompt mostly implies that there is something previous to build off.

4794838
We're all in the Monster Manual somewhere. I just happen to be located under "D". :moustache:

Oh, heck. You don't know what you're getting into. The *last* round was original fiction, and I was flattened by the quality and quantity. We've got amazing people on this fandom.

Original fiction only.

Oh.









Oh no...

I'm not a writer myself, but I was curious about this contest so I read through it. There seems to be a bit of a disconnect, as far as I can tell.

The first part of this post is about how great the FiM fandom is, how it will survive beyond G5, creating new original content. Then you title the contest "The Next Generation Writing Contest" and have a fandom picture of grown up Rarity and Spike with kids. Sounds cool. Sounds interesting. Sounds like the idea is to inspire writers to create cool new continuing new fiction set in FiM that can drive an ongoing fandom on this site even after the show is over, perhaps by writing stories about the children of the shows' characters.

Then the contest says no pony fiction, only original fiction, not posted on fimfiction. So is the purpose to try and sustain the current FiM fandom around G4 and fimfiction, or to encourage current readers to transition to a more general fandom of independent fiction, perhaps out of fears that Hasbro might someday grow unhappy with this sight, if it sees fimfiction as competing with rather than reinforcing its current lineup of content?

If it's to sustain the current fandom around G4 fanfiction, why have the contest be about independent fiction? If it's to encourage a transition to a fandom of independent fiction, why the talk about us remaining a G4 fandom even after the show has ended, and name the contest "The Next Generation?"

Please understand I'm not saying either way what you're trying to do is good or bad, I'm just honestly curious and hoping to understand what your goals are for my personal satisfaction.

I'm confused by the last rule. So we cant have any mention of Gen4 or the generations previous? So basically I can't interpret "the next generation" as the literal next generation aka. the offspring of Twilight Sparkle. Correct? Because the Kilala97 pic you used is really misleading in that regard.

4794837

It's just what Titanium Dragon said.

4794844
4794843

With great challenge comes great reward! Also everlasting fandom fame.

4794853
4794876

I'm confused by the last rule. So we cant have any mention of Gen4 or the generations previous? So basically I can't interpret "the next generation" as the literal next generation aka. the offspring of Twilight Sparkle. Correct? Because the Kilala97 pic you used is really misleading in that regard.

You can write a possible MLP Generation 5 if you wanted to, but it can't reference Hasbro's Gen 4 world or characters. So no, you can't actually write a story about the offspring of Rarity and Spike. :moustache:

But you could totally write about the new cast of characters Hasbro brings in after the old ones go off copyright!

4794881
>write a story about the next generation!

Okay, seems fair.

>but it must be original fiction and not based on any existing franchise!

Fucking what?

4794882

The next generation of the fandom -- both metaphorically, literally, and televisionally -- isn't going to be writing about Twilight Sparkle's kids!

You can totally write about ponies if you want. But new ponies! In a new world. A future G5, not G4+. ^_^

For clarification, does posting the story on Patreon beforehand count as removing anonymity?

I want to enter this so much. It seems so cool and is such a great idea!

I have ideas.

Horrible ideas.

4794885
Yeah but we wouldn't be able to reference anything in g4 or even my little pony in general.

You really should call this 'original fiction' writing contest, not next gen.

I'm not concerned about which direction this goes, and I understand the rules, but there's a bit of contradiction here as 4794875 said more eloquently.

Can you guys please clear this up?

4794825: So just for clarity, fics submitted don't have to have anything to do with ponies at all?

4794841: It's really best if they don't!

4794885: You can totally write about ponies if you want. But new ponies! In a new world.

This makes it look as though judging is based on significantly different criteria.

Georg #29 · Last Monday · · 1 ·

Summarized from what I understand: We don't want to get sued. We don't want Marvel sending lawyers down our chimney, we don't want nameless abominations from the deep depths of Tor books manifesting up the toilet, and we for sure don't want Disney lawyers showing up at our door. (shudders)

About right?

4794891

If anyone in the contest (or any of the judges) follows you on patreon, yes. Though you're free to do it after!

4794895
4794900

Huzzah! The fun has been doubled. :heart:

4794905
It is very rare for fanfiction writers to have their work shut down or removed based on a copyright violation, especially if the writer is neither trying to represent their work as official or trying to profit from it. In MLP fanfiction I've never heard of such a thing happening even once (other works, yes. Fanfiction, no).
So I don't think it is fear of getting sued.

4794875
4794903
4794905

@Georg That's about right, yes.

To explain, this is a contest for original fiction, embracing the idea that the creative people in this fandom (yes, you) will keep on producing cool things long after Hasbro has moved on from G4. You can write a story about talking horses if you want. You can even call it My Little Pony! But they need to be your own talking horses: no Twilight, no Fluttershy, no Razzle Dazzle, and no Celestia's Equestria.

This is about creating something cool and new that isn't based on G4 (or the other things that came before).

4794909

It's not for fear of getting sued but the end result is about the same. See other comment.

4794910 Ok, cool. Thanks for explaining it.

4794910 Thanks. Though that doesn't clarify CiG's statement, I'll take his word assume it's safer just to not write pony, which I wouldn't want to do for an original story, anyway.

4794910
I feel like this is going to cause some serious confusion with regards to how stories should be judged. Because some people are going to be writing pseudo-G5 fics while others are going to be writing stuff that has nothing to do with MLP at all, and you can't go in and pretend you can judge them as equals.

We have a month to figure this all out, but I don't think the criteria is fair, especially when combined with the prompt.

4794921

I feel like this is going to cause some serious confusion with regards to how stories should be judged. Because some people are going to be writing pseudo-G5 fics while others are going to be writing stuff that has nothing to do with MLP at all, and you can't go in and pretend you can judge them as equals.

We have a month to figure this all out, but I don't think the criteria is fair, especially when combined with the prompt.

To quote Cold in Gardez, when asked about writing pony stories:

It's really best if they don't!

If you are confidant your pseudo-G5 ideas can stand up in the ring, by all means! But be careful. True origination content is often better.

4794922
What's the point in allowing that stuff if you're just gonna discourage it? May as well just rule it out.

JackRipper
Story Approver

Jesus Christ, that prize pool though.

Vlade #41 · Last Monday · · 1 ·

4794848

Note that the "copyright" rule means that you can make use of some very old stuff - for instance, if you wanted to write something that in some way involved Greek mythology, you could. But you couldn't write something based on Marvel'sThorcomic book, as that is under copyright.

Right so:

Original fiction only.

Is a lie then? Because you can create a Sherlock Holmes fanfiction for example? Am I getting this right? You're making a prompt where it all has to be original... except it doesn't. Also, none of the work should be dependent on US copyrighted series unless:

You may write something about a potential Generation 5 of My Little Pony if you want, but if you do, you may not use characters or settings from previous generations of the show, including Generation 4

You base it on a new MLP show? A series under US copyright. I assume this works for any series? Could you have a new Danny Phantom fic without the characters or settings of the old one? Even better, can you have a new Danny Phantom fic staring Dracula and Sherlock Holmes and have that still be considered original fiction?

So it has to be original fiction except it doesn't and it has to not depend on anything under US copyright unless it can?

4794923

Hey man, I've read some great series with talking horses that weren't MLP at all!

Gulliver's Travels, for instance.

4794927

I know, right? :twilightsmile:

4794936

Star Trek: The Next Generation had several episodes where the characters talk about Sherlock Holmes. They had episodes where the characters dress as Sherlock Holmes. They had an episode where Professor Moriarty is actually a character!

ST: TNG would still be considered an original work. It is not Sherlock Holmes fanfiction.

Ugh, you'd have to pick the month when I'm planning to work on that project we've been discussing, my submission for Everfree Northwest, a side story to my main story, and a major project at work to announce this contest, didn't you??

Welp... I do love a challenge, so we'll see. :ajsmug:

4794945

Man, it would be awesome to have you enter. You could do a story about robots!

Everything is better with robots.

4794946
cdn2-www.craveonline.com/assets/uploads/2017/06/family-guy-movie-titles.png
Granted, it is true, though if I write a story about robots, I think that might give away the anonymity aspect of this contest.

Still, with a compliment that nice, I'm not sure I could refuse to enter now. :twilightsmile:

4794944
If you can reference, have your characters dress up as, and even include Sherlock Holmes characters and still have that be considered completely original work, then why can't you reference, have your characters dress up or include Spiderman characters in your story and have that be considered original work? Doesn't make much sense to me.

If that Star Trek episode (pretend Star Trek didn't exist until this contest) was a story entered in your contest then it would be considered original if it used Sherlock Holmes characters, but would not be considered original if it used Spiderman characters for the exact same scenarios. Are you seeing what the problem is? I don't understand why one character is allowed but the other isn't because one is patented and one isn't. It's a very precise, but very strange rule.

Well now. This is going to take some thought...

The timing of this is... fortuitous. I've had an EqG short story idea that's been on my mind for a couple months now. If it can work as EqG, it can work as OF.

We shall see if I can polish it enough to be worthy of entry.

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