a very late announcement by the Crow.
(Note: I’m STILL under the spell of the last 36 hours’ festivities. So, I apologise if I sound a little ‘off’.)
First things first. It’s official.
The submissions window is now CLOSED.
Thank you for your entries, everyone! We appreciate all of the work you put in!
And oh man, speaking of entries: we received a TON!
We haven’t read through all of our entries yet. And on that topic, I have a notice for you: we might have to slow down with our reading.
Yesterday, the Brown-Necked Raven shot me an email which indicated that some personal issues might have cropped up for him. I won’t be able to get in touch with him until later today, but I’ll keep everyone updated as to where things stand.
Let’s all hope nothing serious has happened.
One very interesting thing I found amongst our submissions was that a few of our entrants pointed out which subreddits they’d come from (I suppose they were worried about the original announcement about the /r/writing exclusivity).
And with some of these entries, I’m very curious to know how they found our call for submissions (an entrant from /r/food?!). Were they just lurkers on /r/writing, or was there some random chain of clicks that made them aware of our existence? I hope they let me know if they can remember.
However: A big thank you to all those who participated! We loved your entries! You knocked everything out of the park!
And what was the best part of it?! We received stories in all the colours of the rainbow!
- Literary/Drama? Check!
- Magic Realism? Check!
- Science-“my-first-love”-Fiction? Check!
- Fantasy? Check!
- What-I-put-down-as-‘Right up my alley’-fiction? Check! And that’s just scratching the surface!
You get the idea. The entries came in all shapes and sizes. And we loved the variety!
That said: Oh, how some of the entries divided us!
Only a few days ago, I was blown away by one flash piece (well, I consider what we’re asking for to be technically “flash”) and immediately scored it a 7. I subsequently sent it out to both the other judges. This is how the scorecard for it looks right now:
7 — 5 — 1 | Avg: 4.33…
(I can’t believe I couldn’t use a vinculum.)
(MS Word needs to get its act together. I don’t expect as much from WordPress, but Word?!)
That was a divisive one. We’re going to have to discuss this one on Sunday (if all goes well). On that note, here’s another fun excerpt from the scorecard:
2.5 — ?! — 8 | Avg: #VALUE!
Now, while we are keeping a table of scores, we’re not handing out acceptances based on the numbers. We also won’t reveal the scores to anyone apart from the accepted authors.
And yes: it’s true. We’ve found our first acceptance. It was one of our first submissions, and while I’m going to go through it again with my savage red pen: it’s a certain winner. We might be holding onto its identity until we’ve confirmed a few more stories, but I’ll say the following anyway:
I’m pretty sure I gave it away to the author (I was acting like a kid in a candy shop at the time). If you’re reading this, J, I think you know who you are. Please bear with us for now. We’ll get back to you as soon as we’re ready to make the formal announcement.
As mentioned in our previous update, we’re beginning to send out rewrite requests starting today (well, yesterday. Some of of our entrants should have already received them).
We won’t ask for changes to your plots. We’ll be asking for improvements to the execution. Typos, sentence-structure, etc. will be mostly what we’re going to ask for.
If you receive such a request, please get back to us as soon as you can. The rewrites shouldn’t take long, and we’d like to ask you to please work with us as fast as possible. It’d be best if we could put your stories back into the running as quick we can.
We’ll slow down on further acceptances until we have as many of our rewrite requests as possible back; but if the rewrites take too long to come back to us, we’ll unfortunately have to take them off the official scorecard. We can’t leave the other entries out in the dust, after all.
It will (of course) take some time to send all of these out, since there are many, and we’re going through every qualifying entry line-by-line in every case.
We’re aiming to send out all of our current requests by the middle of the month. Only after we send them out will we start finalising which stories we’ve decided on rejecting.
And speaking of the rejections: these decisions are going to be difficult to address. There are stories we like marked up for rejection. This is going to be a long and arduous process.
To clarify, I should add: We won’t be employing a form rejection. Each and every story will be replied to on an individual basis (to the best of our ability).
Yes, some stories were objectively not up to the standard we expected; but in each case, we’ll do our best to tell you what we think could have been improved upon, and what we felt didn’t work. We don’t want anyone to walk away with hard feelings (although there will certainly be some bitter feelings here and there). Automatically-disqualified entries don’t count.
We’ll do our best to help you out. That’s what this is all about. We’re all improving together.
We hope that whether accepted, rejected, or asked for a rewrite, everyone comes out of this with something of worth. No matter how much effort it takes on our behalf, we’ll get back to you. I promise you at least that. Even if I have to reply to all 300+ myself, it’ll be done, no matter how long it takes.
A few words more (& General Updates)
After having said all that: a few names have gone unmentioned.
A big thank you also goes out to:
- /u/MNBrian of /r/writing for their support and assistance during our announcements. (Thanks for never sending me that box of kittens!)
- /u/cdown13 of the awesome /r/horrorreviewed (which we frequent now-and-again) for his support as well.
You two have been awesome! Thanks for all the help!
We’re also deeply honoured to be the venue for two first-time submitting writers (both yet to be judged)! Let’s all please wish them well for their future endeavours!
And if you somehow came across the /r/horroreviewed announcement; yes: we’re considering another run for submissions, soon.
But I must point one thing out: while the Halloween idea seemed good at the time, we have to seriously re-organise first. The response to Call #1 (which we never ended up renaming) was far larger than we thought it would be, and it’s become clear that we need better structuring for future runs.
When we’re good to go, we’ll let everyone know.
And one more thing I’d like to point out: when this is all done and dusted, we’ll delete all the submissions we received from our inbox. So don’t worry about any lingering files. We’ll respect your authorship.
In other news: Yes, we missed a few of our targets for last month.
Alien: Covenant (especially now that I’ve seen it and can assist the birthday girl) and The Thin Blue Line will hopefully both appear after Monday. I’m going to take a bit of a back seat so that I can finish going over the rest of the stories we’ve received.
Once more: a big thank you to everyone involved in The Corvid Review‘s first Call for Submissions!
Apologies for being a bit ‘off’ tonight, but I’m not just half-cut at the moment, I’m seven-fifths-cut right now (blame the birthday-girl A-W Magpie for my current state), so sorry if I’ve sounded like an idiot at any point.
As always, we’re more than happy to reply to questions. Please leave a comment here or message us on our Reddit accounts if you have a query.
Good night, everyone.
(I’ll clean this post up when I’m next online.)
Let’s all wish a Happy Birthday to my Number One!
And just to hijack this post, could we also point you to our review of Nowhere Line? It’s a shame this short hasn’t been in the spotlight more.
Or perhaps you might want to experiment with some Hell’s Fury Curry Rolls?!
Hope to speak to you soon!