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Iron Quill: Absent Friends


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Stand By Your Glasses Steady


We stand beneath resounding rafters,
The walls around us are bare,
They echo back our laughter,
It seems like the dead are still there.

So stand to your glasses steady,
This world is a world full of lies
A toast to the dead already,
And hurrah for the next man to die!


http://www.bowersflybaby.com/stories/songs/02_lies.html -In case anyone is curious about the history of the song.

Hey everyone, welcome to the next round of the Iron Quill! Hope you're all doing well. Looking forward to seeing what everyone comes up with! You've all been doing great work, and it's always fun seeing what everyone comes up with each month. Keep up the awesome job!


The Rules:
1. The list of participants will be brought together in the starting thread as people sign up. Participants may sign up at any point in time, by posting their interest in this thread, or by posting up a story. The Mystery Ingredient will be announced in the starting thread for each round. When you post up your story, please include the name of the round in the title.

2. The Mystery Ingredient will be two of five things. The Ingredient may be a character, a phrase, an item or a more generic theme. The Mystery Ingredient should be used in each entry, but doesn't necessarily have to be literal. Be creative here! (As an example, the Character: The Black Knight could be an armored knight in black, or a villain with a code of honor. It's up to you as the writer to interpret!)

3. All entries must be set in the universe of Malifaux, or a recognizable Alternate version thereof.

4. Entries should be no more than 1,750 words in total, and should be complete self contained stories. Try to stick to this length as much as possible, a reasonable overage will be allowed at the Judge's discretion, but stories that are too long by the deadline will be disqualified. If your initial draft is too long at first submission but, through author feedback, is brought to the word count, that's fine.

5. Participants will have three weeks to complete their entry and post it on the forums in a new thread using a format that identifies easily that the story is an entry and what round. For example: Iron Quill Round 1: The Dark of the Night (or something).

ON EDITING: All stories can be edited as much as people would like. If a story is going to be modified to such an extent that it no longer matches the original story, please start a new thread.

WIP will not be necessary in the title, but it is requested that any story that isn't completed have it at the top of the post. When the story is finished, please remove WIP from the post.

Edits can be made up until the deadline, but any edits made on the deadline or afterwards will disqualify the entry from the competition. (As an editorial note- please don't make me do this.)

6. The winner(s) of each round will be determined by a blind score from a public and a private poll. The public poll will be a thread created in which anyone who reads the stories can vote. The private poll will be for Judges and Authors who have weighted votes they can hand out. Each Judge/Author can award each of the following to different stories: 3 votes, 2 votes, 1 vote. At the same time, the Judges/Authors are requested to leave criticism and feedback. These polls will be open for one week, at which point the winner of the round will be announced. Any Judge/Author votes that have not been submitted by that point will be spoiled. You cannot vote for yourself.

Most Improved Award: Now that we have some competitions in the bag, I want to start a 'Most Improved' award for each round. When you give me your weighted votes (or any readers who want to join in on this one), name the author you think has improved the most this round, either from last round or from the beginning of the competition.

7. When you put up your story, put up a post in here saying so. That way, we have a central location that is being updated as time goes on, which lets people subscribe to the thread and keep track of what's going on. I'll have a central list here as always, but please take the time to do this, it'll make life easier for me and other writers to give you feedback when we know the story is up before the round end.

MYSTERY INGREDIENTS: Continuing from the last round, you've got five options to pick from. Pick two or more of these. Because of this, you're going to need to put in your entry, either at the beginning or the end, which Ingredients you used. And with that out of the way, here's what you're all waiting for anyway:

Theme: Absence
Character: The Academic
Line: "Oh, I didn't do it. You did."
Item:  A
rusted banjo

Location: A Saloon

Starting Date: April 7, 2014, 00:01 EST
Ending Date: April 28, 2014 23:59 EST

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