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Tune into the voice of the community by checking out DeviantArt's Journal Portal. Join the conversation by browsing, adding faves, and leaving comments, or submit your own Journal to let your voice be heard.

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57,016 Deviants Online
EDIT2: Okay guys, it has been brought to my attention that DeviantART journals are rumored to cap off at 9,999 comments.. and we are rapidly approaching that mark. In order to prevent a little bit of a panic, I'm implementing something new before the journal caps: a backup journal. This also meant that the original idea of me replying to every single comment with a number will not work, as we're well into nearly 5,000 entries and 7,000 comments thus far. So, the solution is going to be a google docs spreadsheet with all of the entrants and their assigned numbers listed, and a backup place for people to post their entries when this journal has been exhausted of all possible space..assuming we actually hit 9,999! I will do my absolute best to get this up and ready as soon as possible, thank you as always for your patience! As of writing this, we are a mere 8 days before the final day to enter--August 31st! Thank you for participating!


>>>Backup by presaged<<<

Additionally: Please, for the love of all things wonderful in this world: READ. Read the FAQ! Read the journal that I spent a very long time typing out!

Yes! I am aware--MANY of you do not have numbers yet! I have only assigned.. maybe 2,500 so far, and I am in the process of moving all of them to a google document.


I have ENTIRELY too much work cut out for me as it is--you are making things HARDER for me. Please be courteous. Thank you.

EDIT: New end date is the 31st of this month--August! This is entirely too much for me to handle singlehandedly, so I'm cutting it a bit short in terms of deadline. xD; I hope no one minds. After August 31st, no new entrants will be counted. I will assign numbers through the first week in September, and on September 5th at noon Texas time I will post the stream so you guys can see the random number generator do it's thing.

Original: I've been wanting to give back to the community for a long time, because I have been here a long time. 5 years, to be exact--and what better way to do so than to do a raffle?

:star: I'm holding a raffle for $500 USD--or it's equivalent in points :points: :star:

One hundred for every year I have been here on deviantART. (In points, I don't really know what the equivalent is. Everyone keeps coming up with a new number, and I'm not really familiar with the points conversion system. ^^;… &…) That's alotta dough, no strings attached! But wait, here's the catch...

...There ISN'T one! All you have to do to participate is easy: Make a journal advertising this one and post a link in the comments section.


Things to make note of:

:bulletblack: When you comment, I will reply with a number. This is your "ticket," or your hat to be thrown into the ring, so to speak. I will put the number of participants into a random number generator on Livestream on November 30th, (I've decided to move the date up to August 31st) and out will pop winners one two and three!

:bulletblack: As of now, you can only get *one* ticket, or number. I may add other ways in to get extra votes later, but for now--you just get one! No side accounts, please be fair. :(

:bulletblack: There will be three winners. First prize is for $250, second is for $150, third is for $100.

:bulletblack: You have to have a PayPal account if you want the cash, otherwise you will receive the prize in points.

:bulletblack: If you delete your journal or hide your comment, you are forfeiting your entry. No exceptions.

I may add onto this later, who knows! But for now, let me take the chance to say: THANK YOU! Thank you for 5 great years on the site. Thank you for all of your support, thank you for your feedback, and thank you for giving me the drive and the encouragement to keep moving forward. :)

Good luck, and thank you!!

Celebrating Deviousness - August 2015

Sat Aug 1, 2015, 12:00 AM
Img-00 by techgnotic

In Recognition of Exemplary Membership and an Outstanding Spirit of helpfulness and mentoring within the DeviantArt community.

Introducing DamaiMikaz


“My name is Damaris, but most people know me as DamaiMikaz. I’m a self-taught artist from the Netherlands and I’ve been making art ever since I can remember. When I first came to DeviantArt I was pretty much dragged here by my friends, that all worked on original projects. Up until that time, I was primarily a writer and traditional artist. It was DeviantArt that sparked my interest for digital art, and it didn’t just spark my interest, but the community’s willingness to help out people really gave me a good start.

It’s remarkable how easy it is to connect to people on this website over things as simple as original projects and learning how to do art. Following other artists was what helped me to spark ideas and keep drawing.

The tutorials, groups, and helpful reactions on the forums guided me towards becoming a better artist. What I’ve always liked most about art, is how it brings people together. Doing art on your own can be quite lonely and challenging, improving together is a lot easier because it’s more fun.

Over time DeviantArt has become a second home to me. I’ve met amazing artists, got more support than I could’ve ever imagined, and made some of my best friends here. People cheered with me when I was happy and supported me during the darker times in life. Thanks for your support. It has been an amazing journey so far, and I hope we’ll even reach greater heights.”

August 2015

Deviousness Award Winner

DamaiMikaz is one of the most inspiring artists you’ll find on DeviantArt. A long-time dedicated member of the community, her journals regularly provide insight into creating art, inspiration for art and life, and thought-provoking ideas that spark magnetic conversations. Her approach to digital art has kept her creating, growing, and improving throughout the years, and one glance into her gallery is enough to see the progress that she has made and continues to make.

It is with great pride that we name DamaiMikaz the recipient of the Deviousness Award for August 2015.

Showing Some Love

Community Quotes

:iconjenfruzz: :icontiganusi: :iconiingo: :iconyokoky: :iconphydeau: :iconastarsia: :iconsaniika: :iconrhynwilliams: :iconkovowolf: :iconsuzanne-helmigh: :iconstelari: :iconqueen-soulia:

I have known of DamaiMikaz for a long time … I don’t think there are many deviants who haven’t come across her insanely talented gallery at least once or twice. However, only recently was I able to get to know her better. She is one of the newest mentors at seniormentors but she has already become a valuable, enthusiastic asset to our team. She is open, friendly, and approachable. Her love of DeviantArt and the community within is impossible to miss and it has been inspiring to chat with her and get to know her better! I’m thrilled that she has now received Deviousness, for she truly represents the meaning of this accolade. Congratulations, Damai!”

I find DamaiMikaz to be a wonderful and inspirational voice towards this community! She has such great advice and willing spirit to motivate people here on dA! Her art is also super fabulous! Thank you, Damai for your support and inspiration!”

DamaiMikaz is a super-talented artist who loves the community and is extremely friendly and approachable. I congratulate you dear friend and wish you the best of the best - stay extraordinary.”

I’ve not met many people on DeviantArt who could just downright shock me with their ability to self-market and create a brand around their username within the community - DamaiMikaz is foremost in my mind when I think of people who have, though. She’s so naturally good at making herself known that it’s almost scary. She’s one of those people who are everywhere, sure, but also have wonderful and very recognizable artwork with a personality to match. And whatever she’s doing is working; her name is in everyone’s mind and she has a watcher base that’s literally as big as Samoa. Recently I’ve got to chat with her a bit more since she’s joined the team at seniormentors (she’s giving back to newer artists in the community because she’s just that awesome) and was delighted to find out she’s very nice and personable too. Congrats, Damaris! If anyone embodies the whole “authentically devious” aspect of this award it’s you, hands-down.”

She has said that she would rather be happy than rich or famous. And it seems she’s succeeding. There’s a very positive vibe that she gives off in everything she does. I originally started watching her when she became a senior member, without knowing much about her. It quickly became obvious how she got there. I love when people give back to the community. She does so much, from helpful articles to features to simply being positive. Her support of other artists is inspirational. This award is well deserved.”

DamaiMikaz is such a supportive deviant. She is so open to sharing her knowledge of the big stuff and the little stuff. I enjoy looking at her gallery, but I’m the kind of person who admires the resourcefulness of a person as well, and she’s got that in spades. Want to know how to get more page views? She’s written an article! Got an art-block hovering over you? She’s got you sorted. It’s as if she feels that all that super awesome knowledge in her head simply must be shared. That’s a special gem, make no mistake. Nothing good is good unless it’s shared so other people can learn and shine brightly as well.”

What can I say about DamaiMikaz ? Well she knows how to translate energy onto a digital canvas, whatever she creates, you cannot help but be in awe at the power of her mark making; not only that, but the symbolism she uses to drive a story forward in which we are forced to wonder … somehow like peering up at the stars, where we are left to imagine what else is out there.

Damaris is a humble and charismatic person and there is no doubt she deserves this Deviousness award, Congratulations!!”

I started watching DamaiMikaz over a year ago and I could witness an incredible progress in her artworks (which were great already!). Her gallery is the proof that dedication and hard work can lead you anywhere; on top of that, she’s a really humble person. She gets along with anybody and takes time to leave helpful and nice comments on other people’s deviations: she’s the glue that holds a big part of the community all together.”

Hey, this makes me quite happy! Damai is a huge influence on the site, for me personally she is a motivational symbol. Very straight to the point, logical and practical person. I see her mostly as a speaker, a voice which talks to many! She is that kind of deviant you want to stick around and read what she writes, see what she draws. I enjoy particularly thinking about the messages she presents in her work - thought technically not as developed, it always draws you near. For longer time I hoped she will be presented to wider public - more people should get to know her :) (Smile) So yes! It makes me happy! Thanks for giving me a chance to say something cool about her!”

DamaiMikaz is one of those deviants that brings to the table a unique, inspiring style to the art community. With an equally enthusiastic and positive personality to go with it, DamaiMikaz is truly one of a kind! Shine on DamaiMikaz!”

DamaiMikaz is super active in helping the deviant community with her journals, comments and welcoming every new member out there! She is a example for us all as she’s always kind and honest. It’s incredible how much time she has devoted to Deviantart. If anyone deserves this honorable award it’s her!”

DamaiMikaz is indeed a inspiration for the community, whom without skipping a beat cares about the opinions of others.”

Among few well known and famous people of this community she responds to comments and interact with fans.”

Congratulations to DamaiMikaz!

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another edit, about the money stuff.

here's spyed talking about issues with revenue and money stuff, and hinting at core.
and more discussion about lack of communication.

there was some discussion in the comments about how DA could possibly be broke, with getting $10million in 2013 to keep it the top art website. but after a discussion with a website dev, it's entirely possible for a website to cost millions of collars to host. Similar websites like tumblr and imgur have received 4x and even 100x money in funding. 
(but there's also this if you want to read it too.
any other insight on this topic would be helpful. 

now onto the copyright/art theft laws.

it was explained to me that deviantart's art theft policy are the way they are due to deviantart being a corporation in america, and deviantart's new policy on art theft is actually a law in america. art theft is the word to use to explain the physical act of stealing art, and copyright infringement is used to explain the act of taking someone's intellectual works and trying to claim it as your own
however, a website can have rules that aren't enforced by law. and it still doesn't make up for deviantart's lack of communication.
a lot of the userbase is around my age, or younger, or a few years older. i'm entering my final year of graphic design and we have only briefly been over copyright laws. a lot of DA users like myself are more ignorant on this subject and many of us assumed the policy change in art theft was from deviantart saying that they no longer considered what we thought was art theft to be art theft. 

but that doesn't make up for this bullshit. 

"While most blatant reposts of your work will be taken down without worry,alterations, edits, traces, and references are becoming regarded as acceptable by DA."
like wtf DA?? 

so hopefully now there's some more clearance? 

big edit!!: please read this comment made by dxd, a former staff member.

"DeviantArt needs to generate revenue, whether they're right to do it by a price increase here or not is yet to be seen. They are however in need of funds as they are struggling, as evidenced by the cutting of 50% of the paid staff. They're not being greedy, they're broke."
"What is bad is the failure to communicate the change to people and the reasoning why, because it generates drama like this."

i have moved the previous journal to a file. if you would like to read it, it is here. however i feel it no longer applies with the current information (but i'm glad i taught some people how to properly boycott >:P)

there is still an issue with deviantart's new policy on art theft, and their failure to communicate with their userbase. 

but hopefully with the threat of boycott, they'll take the opportunity to talk to us now. thousands of users, including myself, have jumped the gun wrongly accused deviantart of being greedy with this new update due to lack of communication. if i had known they were struggling, i would have never made this journal in the first place.

deviantart, please talk to your userbase. please communicate with us. please listen to what we have to say. hopefully to prevent drama like this from happening again. (and change your policy on art theft, seriously. that's a big issue.)

i'd like to thank dxd for properly explaining to me what's going on. 
HAI GURLZ 3D by Lopoddity


Now in 3-D, for all your nightmare inducing needs! :D Lovingly rendered by artist :iconnorbert-n-s:, or Meowraa on tumblr. Original source here:


Journal Entry: Sun Aug 16, 2015, 12:10 AM

Sometimes I get a notes from you guys asking about tips to draw better. It's okay to ask if you're prepared to get respond that does not resolve all your problems ♥ Many of you ask about techniques, specific things to make your drawing work or just anatomy. I'm not at a place when I can teach you any of this. I'm still at my artistic journey and I'll be in it for the rest of my life. But I can still share with you some experience that I gained while travelling with my drawing. So here they are 8 core points to improve.

1. Don't try to find your style at first. When your hand isn't warmed up by tons of training and studies you'll only get frustrated. So just draw, regardless of style.

2. Try to understand anatomy. And when I say "try to understand" I mean fill thousands of pages with it. But only one theme at a time. It will be easier. So lets say today you'll be trying to understand an eye, second day work with ears. I really recommend to you lessons of Stan Prokopenko at YouTube. 

3. Don't you ever give up when you'll see that something is going wrong. For ex. hands. If you're bad at drawing them just practice with patience. Every time you're making yourself trying, you are closer to state when you'll be good at it.

4. Get out of your comfort zone. My funny story will include backgrounds. I really sucked at drawing environment, I hated it and it never came out good. My job though forced me to level up in this theme. So I forced myself to practice. And now I can draw buildings and trees and all this beautiful stuff I couldn't one year ago!

5a. When you're really exhausted by practicing chill out, take a walk, read a book, ride a seal, do whatever. You really need a rest. One hour of doing nothing and thinking about nothing will give you boost up to work harder next time, and you will have more ideas. Don't think about rest time as wasted time. Think about it as a investment in your good mood and health (Which helps others too)

5b. Sometimes you feel like not drawing today. Don't draw then. Think of this time as your rest. Sometimes your brain is just tired and needs a longer rest.

6. The other day when you have the power, Practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice, practice. 
It is never too much.

7. Learn to see. Practice your eyes to find gestures, colors, correlations between light, shadows, shapes. You are never too young or too old to learn it. Well trained eye will catch everything, well trained hand will put it into paper. 

 Remember that every great artist, at some point, was in the same place as you, and any new born artist will be at your place in some time. Don't ever put anyone down. Including yourself. Your level of content is defined by the time you spend on practice and number of times you let yourself to see.

So, yup guys. This is it for now. If I'll ever find something really important in this theme I'll let you know. You can share your experience in the comments too ♥ 

Skin by SimplySilent
  • Mood: Disbelief
  • Listening to: -
  • Reading: -
  • Watching: -
  • Playing: -
  • Eating: -
  • Drinking: -

Also, I just heard DA may not be in any kind of financial trouble to begin with. I made this in the assumption that deviantArt was trying to cover up for potential losses but that might not even be the case according to new information.

Hoax debunked!I would like to thank :iconspittinginsanity: for finding this comment!
She found a comment concerning the "Shut down" of DeviantArt that started up by Pro-Core members who blamed Anti-Core members and the petition that it'll get the site shut down.
This is proof that this site WILL NOT shut down.
Now the other excuse is that "Da is going broke though!" Well thanks to a certain somebody who posted a web link
DA makes 250,798$ per day
7,523,940$ per month
and 90,287,280$ per year.
and also gets 16,720,000 visits pageviews per day.
So no DA is not going broke,the staff must be.
Now I'd appreciate it if you guys shared this because a lot of pro-core members have been harassing us anti-core members for supporting the petition and removal of core and blaming us for a possible shut down which was a hoax. :)
Read the last journal as well concerning the future of core:

Lately there has been a lot of uproar on the risk of losing deviantArt entirely if you sign the petition against CORE.
A lot of misinformation has been spread and I need to assert them.

First off, you do not need to worry! Website-based businesses such as deviantArt do not work that way, they do not go bankrupt anywhere near as easily as other forms of business. Also, we do not aim for this. The only reason why we wish for the Core boycott is to make Deviantart listen to us. It has failed to do that for years, and we have finally had enough.

Second, we need to clear up a few things. We do not want to remove what CORE represents. We want only to change it back to 'Premium' and bring back the prices to the level they were, or lower. And here is why it should happen:

1. The reason Premium has been deviantArt's #1 source of income is naturally because so many people use adblock that prevents them from gaining more ad-revenue. Why do people use adblock instead of buying the Premium? Simple!


When the only perks the average user were interested in it were the removed ads and a chance to change your username, you understand why people would simply not buy Premium. The other available perks then were completely useless to 98% of deviantArt users, so you understand why the concept was faulty to begin with.

What does deviantArt do, though? It does the exact opposite what it should do, which of course was to make Premium more attractive to paying members, and this would have been by giving us better and more usable perks, and REDUCING ITS PRICE to around $15-20 a year, and the same for Super Groups. For that money there would have been more paying customers guaranteed,


2. Another thing they did that was incredibly stupid was doing this without informing us about it. And the logo is really ugly. You can understand people do not take such things well, and while these were definitely problems as well, the bigger problem was the beforementioned; that they do NOT do the SMARTEST THING to do.

3. If deviantArt needs more money, it needs to make its users happy. Currently, it is failing at that. It does not listen to our concerns especially regarding art thievery and these updates, it changed things we did not ask for nor consent to, and it unannouncedly rises up prices to cover the costs of the FARCE that was the community "facelift" redesign and the mobile application - both of which were near-flops.

They are doing the exact opposite a smart business is supposed to be doing and if they do not realise it on their own, they have to once we vote on our feet. It is likely the only way they will actually ever listen to what we have to say. We do not want Deviantart gone. But we want Deviantart to realise the mistakes it has made, and to fix them and that happens by making us HAPPY.

And currently they are not doing that.

Deviantart has brought this in on itself by failing to listen to our concerns in the past. We only want to help, and the only way we can is by making them listen to us and this seems to be the only way it can be achieved.

They have not listened to what we've had to say about anything in the past. They do not respond to issues regarding art-thievery, they update the site with near-useless features and changes that do not go well with the community. Of course people don't like it and members leave! And with this expensive project messed up added to it, you can guess why they need the money.

But here is the thing:


tl;dr: Raising the prices was the last thing they should have done. The wisest thing to do would have been to keep Premium as it was and reduce its cost to around $15 and advertise the **** out of it. That is how you fix up for losses AND keep your members happy, and perhaps even make them even happier than they were!

That said,

(Disclaimer: this is only a suggestion for those who wish to help deviantArt but do not wish to purchase a Core-membership. Also, make sure your online security is appropriately up-to-date with a great all-round anti-virus software and firewall. I recommend F-Secure SAFE.)

That is the easiest way for you to ensure deviantArt will keep on running as they get more ad revenue and do not have to lean so heavily on the income from paying members, and holy crap, by this way you actually don't have to pay a dime for it!

Spread the word, amigos! Fret not! This isn't over yet!

#core #coremembership #boycottcorememberships #BOYCOTTCORE

Also, this:
  Why CORE membership feels too expensive!Looking at this list, going though the different perks, I have no problem seeing that you should pay for a few of these.. what I disagree with though is the price. Nothing here stands out like a just reason to double the price when the upgraded membership went from Premium to CORE. 
If you disagree with me, please feel free to comment here or send me a message, but please keep it civil. 
Also, please read EVERYTHING before you comment so that I don't have to repeat myself. 
Thank you! 
When you look at the perks for being a CORE member, which now are SEVEN things, TWO out of them are clearly not perks. 
----- ★ -----
Build the Future
You are funding DeviantArt and the community thanks you!
I think it's great to help out sites like dA, but I think that a upgraded membership should be about buying a product and not charity. I feel this was added to the list to make it seem like you get more then y

And more:
Core, A.K.A. dA's biggest fuckup yet.
So, I think everyone knows about the thing by now. It exploded so enourmously fast, when suddenly people refreshed their notifications pages and got lazored in the eyes by those vivid, fugly orange (stolen: symbols by their friends' usernames who had Premium. An hour later, someone discovered that the prices were almost doubled and by then, the flaming shitstorm was impossible to stop. 
So what has Core done??
                                       12 MONTHS MEMBERSHIP FROM $30 TO $50 (+66%), while simultaneously

WINDS OF FORTUNE - Naval Strategy Board/Card Game

Journal Entry: Sat Aug 1, 2015, 10:07 PM

Winds of Fortune, a naval strategy board/card game, is live on Kickstarter!! Please check out this game and show your support! :la: It’s a great game for all ages. For more information about game play and backer rewards, visit the Kickstarter page. :eager:

Here are some of the brilliant illustrations that my friends, kudos-praze and musigal, have made for the game. Check out more art here and here!

Killer Crustacean: Winds of Fortune by kudos-prazeSea Serpent: Winds of Fortune by kudos-prazeEconomic Collapse: Winds of Fortune by kudos-prazeDragon: Winds of Fortune by kudos-prazeCastle Verda: Winds of Fortune by kudos-prazeMaelstrom by musigalBroken Compass by musigalRough Seas by musigalThe Barracuda by musigalFlying Dutchman by musigalShield by musigal

More artwork!!
Carpenter: Winds of Fortune by kudos-prazeCaught Spy: Winds of Fortune by kudos-prazeChimeric Fusion: Winds of Fortune by kudos-prazeThe Hammerhead: Winds of Fortune by kudos-prazeHoly Craftyard: Winds of Fortune by kudos-prazeDefensive Strategist: Winds of Fortune by kudos-prazeFloating Fortress: Winds of Fortune by kudos-praze
Coral Bow by musigalThe Legion by musigalReinforced Hull by musigalTreasure Hold by musigalSpy Glass by musigalBow Chasers by musigal

Here's video with some of the art creation!

Here are their announcement journals:  WINDS OF FORTUNE KICKSTARTER LIVE!Winds of Fortune, the naval strategy card game that myself and Gloria Farley have been illustrating, is finally live on Kickstarter! Check it out at the link below and show your support! It’s a great game for all ages. For more information about game play and backer rewards, visit the Kickstarter page. :)
More finished card art can be seen in my gallery:
and Gloria's gallery:
WINDS OF FORTUNE KICKSTARTER HAS BEGUN!The new Kickstarter for Winds of Fortune has just begun! Praise Moyer and I are doing the card art for this fun naval-themed board/card game, and you should support it! We have 30 days to fully fund the project, so pledge ASAP if you'd like to do so!
I absolutely love working on the art for this, and I really am excited to see the project fully funded! :D
Here are links to some of the complete art:

There's less than ONE WEEK left to fully fund the project, so please pledge ASAP if you'd like to do so!

:new:Okay, I've finally settled down.:new:
I'm all moved into my new house on base with my husband, and now we're sitting up at his parents house for two weeks.  I'll be on when I can, but I'll be a little busy here and there.  For those wanting to send off physical goods or traditional work, I can send off my new address to you whenever you're ready! ♥

Since I can't sleep, and at this point it's probably best for me to stay awake since we're moving today, I figure I might put this up now! ♥ Best to find some me time today while I can x'D

Anywho, here's how things are going to go down this time! ♥

This right here is my beautiful stash of characters! ♥

I've done my best to keep them as organized as possible, but if you need any help finding someone, don't be afraid to ask.
I'm looking to have art done of ANY of my characters (and no, you don't have to ask me permission to draw them. Consider your permission granted now ♥ pfff), and to be done in any medium.

Here are the basic guidelines to keep track of! ♥

Rules and Regulations

:bulletpink:You do NOT have to be a watcher for this contest this time. SHOCKER:bulletpink:
:bulletred:You can draw ANY of my characters--Animals, humans, taurs, etc.:bulletred:
I want to see it all /)///v///(\ ♥
:bulletorange:You don't need permission to draw my babs. Really, you don't need to ask ; v ;:bulletorange:
Submissions NEED to include at least one of my characters to count as an entry!
Just drawing one of my character's partners will not count!
I will absolutely love couples drawn though /)///v///(\ ♥
:bulletgreen:Feel free to use any medium you feel comfortable with!:bulletgreen:
I am perfectly okay with traditional, digital, plushes (omfg i would die happy getting one), charms, other physical goods, pixels, animations... 
:bulletblue:You are free to submit as many entries as you'd like!!:bulletblue:
Do remember though, quality over quantity is VERY important! ♥
:bulletpurple:Make sure you submit your work in a comment or note somewhere where I can easily access it!!!:bulletpurple:
I can not stress this enough--if you put it somewhere where I can't see it right away, or if you mess up a tag but don't mention it to me, I WILL NOT SEE IT AND YOUR HARD WORK WILL NOT COUNT!!
I really don't want anyone's submissions to not go through Q - Q //sweats
It would be preferable if you comment here, but notes work just fine.
:bulletpink:Have fun, guys!!:bulletpink:
Really~ This contest is for fun. Don't rush, or stress yourself too much!
There is more than enough time to get whatever you'd like to get done, done!
And please don't cause any trouble for other deviants!


Grand prize!!
:bulletblue:$100 / 8000:points::bulletblue:

Second Prize
:bulletred:$50 / 4000:points::bulletred:

Third Prize
:bulletyellow:$25 / 2000:points::bulletyellow:

Fourth Prize
:bulletwhite:$15 / 1200:points::bulletwhite:

Fifth Prize
:bulletgreen:$10 / 800:points::bulletgreen:

Third through fourth prize might be taken down depending on future funds
Feel free to add in prizes if you feel like donating!


If you have any questions, don't be afraid to ask.
There is a high chance I will ignore questions that are already answered in the Rules and Regulations if they are asked enough--
I would really like you guys to READ what's been given to you. ; v ; The stuff posted here shouldn't be too difficult to understand, I hope.

Hopefully I got everything important down--thank you to all who enter!
EDIT: If you like this journal entry, check out The Sarcastic Guide to Writing ebook… for exclusive content on world-building, character, and dialogue!

1. Work on something else. I know, I know. You've been working on that story of yours for twelve whole years, and it's your baby. Sure, it may have been inspired by that Dungeons and Dragons session you had when you were thirteen, but you're going to make your fortune with it! It's the next Harry Potter! When my pals and I have gone to writing conferences, we've made note of an interesting phenomenon: when someone has written a first novel in the fantasy genre, it is invariably a sword-and-sorcery novel or a portal fantasy. I will bet money on it: show me a first novel and I will show you a sword-and-sorcery or portal fantasy. There's nothing wrong with sword-and-sorcery as a genre, don't get me wrong. It's just that in writing Lord of the Rings, Tolkien provided a simple, easy-to-follow template for amateurs. C. S. Lewis wrote one of the greatest portal fantasies in existence with The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe. (Incidentally, Lewis was best pals with Tolkien, and when he decided to foray into fantasy for the first time guess what he wrote? Portal fantasy. Coincidence? I think not!) Portal fantasy provides a comfortable setting to start in: your own world. Not quite so many balls to juggle right out of the gate. The thing is, your writing reflects your level of skill in a first novel. It takes ages and ages to make a first novel work. That's why authors take the easier route and write something else. I write many, many stripes of fantasy: xenofiction, steampunk, and urban fantasy. And I may just be about to, gulp, write straight YA. I am not immune to this rule: guess what my first novel was? Sword-and-sorcery! The thing is, even a different story in the same genre can teach you things you didn't know. To paraphrase Disney's Pocahontas, "You'll find out things you never knew you never knew." When I meet someone who has held their baby novel to their chest for twelve years, refusing to change anything about it and reacting aggressively to critique: that's someone going nowhere fast. Only slightly less pathetic than the person who roleplayed once and has had this great idea for a novel for years but hasn't written jack squat. By working on something else, you free yourself from stagnation. You start fresh, and can try again. One of the things I've recognized about my own improvement is that I've begun to world-build based on my plot, so the neat fantasy details I come up with serve an actual purpose to the story. That took me years to figure out, ages! And I've gone back to older work and been like "What the hell is this? What was I thinking?" Working on something else gives you more than one basket to put your eggs in, which makes you more likely to be critical of your own work. The writing is the easy part, my friends. Making your writing publishable is a whole new ball game, and only something like 2 percent of the population ever gets to see their work in published print. Enjoy those odds, crappy writers!

2. Learn to incubate. The ability to leave your writing alone is a valuable one. First, you have to come back to manuscript with a reader's eye, and not the bleeding heart of an author who loves their flawless work. In traditional publishing, edits and rewrites can take up to 18 months before the book comes out in real form. And during that time, you better believe you're expected to write something else. Even before that, there is the special, fresh hell known as querying, which requires you to wait ages and ages for an agent to get back to you on whether or not they like your story. Waiting on that reply is wasting time. Start on another story. Let the first one sit for a while, and age like good wine. Don't get caught in the trap of rewriting endlessly (something I found myself in danger of doing recently so I panicked and decided hell or high water I was going to collect some rejections.)  It is very easy, especially for people in violation of Rule #1, to fiddle endlessly with the same thing. It is entirely possible to overwork a manuscript. I've done it at least several times, and come back to it hating what my brain fizzle managed to crap out on the page. Me personally, I have a built-in boredom paradigm that kicks in after about 6 weeks. I've got 6 weeks to actively write on something before smoke starts coming out my ears and I start to hate it. I can world-build and play with ideas all the live long day, but it takes a lot of fuel to write a novel and I run out. After that I need copious doses of movies and video games to feel even remotely inspired again. Incubation is a natural "season" of the writer, assuming you have honed the necessary self-discipline to finish a project in the first place. When I was a teenager, I didn't have that requisite skill yes, and enjoyed leaping from one project to another project willy-nilly. Whatever. I cared enough about what I was doing and wanted to do that I matured, and you probably will, too.

3. Value rewrites. One of the most appalling novels I have ever had the displeasure of reading was when I attended a week-long writer's conference and had to read about 12 of the first 50 pages each from my fellow classmates. One of them was a sword-and-sorcery fairy tale retelling, but the grammar was so terrible it was damn near indecipherable. I'm talking like something I read out loud to my writing buddies while we howled over breakfast each day and wiped away tears of mirth. This manuscript has become a running joke among two of my pals and I. I think I managed to get through about ten pages of it before I flipped to the last page and wrote "This will never get published in its current incarnation. You need to study grammar, because no agent is going to read past the first page." Later, this fellow posted indignantly on Facebook that he got "rude critique." Well, I thought his manuscript was rude. It was definitely an offense to anyone with eyes and a functioning brain. And seriously, grammar? If you don't have proper grammar and spelling down, I am under no obligation whatsoever to suffer through your crap. I used to get really indignant about the idea that agents only need 5 pages of your novel to decide whether they'd go with your project or not. "Tyranny!" I'd say. "How unfair!" But before this conference started, I put the manuscripts to a simple test to decide which order I'd read them in: reading the first sentence. And I'll be damned, the manuscripts that had good first sentences were good, meh first sentences were meh, and bad first sentences were bad. An agent can tell if you suck just by your first sentence! I can tell if you suck by your first sentence! So pay attention to what you're doing in rewrites. Don't just slap a first draft on paper and expect it to fly. It beggars belief that Mister Grammatically Incorrect thought his stuff was good when he was literally changing tenses midsentence. Who does that!? I believe it was Ursula K. Le Guin who said "Rewrites are where the magic happens." And it's true. It's where you find your first sentences and make stronger character arcs and better plot twists. Don't delude yourself into thinking that just because you wrote it down means it gold.

4. Read outside your genre. I recently came across a self-published book about dragons and elves whose main character was named Paolini. Gee, I wonder where they got their inspiration from!? (Incidentally, their first sentence was pretty hilarious in its badness, and it violated Rule 1 by being something the person had worked on for 12 years straight.) You don't make things easier for yourself by making your story a funny sword-and-sorcery idea for adults and kids that deals with serious subjects like rape and slavery. An agent ain't touching that. Sword-and-sorcery is an accessible genre, but man, too many people never go beyond that. Read historical fiction to find out how plate mail and arrows worked. Read straight YA coming-of-age to learn how to make the emotions of the character the only stakes in the story. Read nonfiction to research the impact of technology and environment on science and history. And for god's sake, read more than one kind of fantasy! There's like a million different stripes out there: magical realism, urban fantasy, steampunk, xenofiction, grimdark, allegorical, dying Earth, paranormal, mundane, apocalyptic, post-apocalyptic, on and on. And you think you're clever because you gave your character a baby dragon and a staff instead of a sword? Spare me. One of the biggest beefs I have with Stephanie Meyer (and believe me, I got plenty) is that she never read any vampire stuff. And if she had, it probably wouldn't have just been the sparkling vampires that got fixed. Your ideas are not as unique as you think they are, and the more you read the more you will realize this. You're supposed to be reading anyway, because you're a writer. I'm constantly dismayed by a lot fantasy being published today, because it's same old stuff so often. Maybe the agents are to blame for that. But the people who write in the first place sure are, too.

5. Accept that ideas adapt or die. I have two dead worlds in my gallery: The Dragon Rose and The Bronze Key. These are books that will never be published and that I no longer work on, because their ideas no longer appeal to me. (They also have sequels which I could never, ever write.) However, my urban fantasy, Daemonfire, is still going strong after 16 some-odd years. The fundamentals of the characters is still the same, and the very idea that I came up with a set of dynamics that actually worked at the age of 16 is nothing short of a cosmic roulette win. However, the story itself has changed shape many, many times. It started out as a sword-and-sorcery (Told you.), jumped to portal fantasy (WHAT DID I TELL YOU?) and then finally made the leap to urban fantasy. And even then, the manuscript still needed about 6 more iterations before it reached its current incarnation. Those manuscripts will never see the light of day, and those who read those manuscripts have been both sworn to secrecy and promised hush money if I ever make it big. The original execution of the idea was nothing short of total shit. It was ludicrous. But somehow, the idea kept appealing to me, and I kept trying again. The thing is, I was writing other stuff in the mean time. New ideas and new lessons about structure and arcs and characterizations came to me. At a fundamental, animus kind of level, I suppose the idea is still the same. But its methods of execution are worlds apart. I didn't keep trying to make the same darling of my 16 year old self work at 20, or 25. Ideas adapt or they die, and if they don't die, you're probably writing crap. Over and over and over again. Things that were life and death at 16 change when you turn 21, to say the least. Don't cling to things because of nostalgia or in memory of better times. Cut what doesn't matter to the story. In some cases, it means scrapping the entire story idea altogether. I don't lament the years and years I spent in a story world now dead. They taught me very valuable lessons. But just like an artist doesn't show off preschool finger paintings, you don't need to keep working on something just because it's earlier work you have feelings for. Yeah, yeah, growing up sucks and all that, but being brave enough to say "This isn't working, I'm going to try something else" will take you to knew places just as enjoyable as the old.
  • Mood: Content
  • Watching: Gravity Falls


Sat Aug 22, 2015, 5:50 PM

I drew with and the winner is :iconblooddesert:BloodDesert!

oh my gosh you guys i dont know where you came from but i love you all!!!

I wanna give out a one year premium/core or the equivalent in points (4k!) to one lucky watcher of mine!!

so here's how you can win!!!
:star: please be watching me! this is to celebrate my watchers so it kind of makes sense??? new watchers are welcome to participate but please dont watch and unwatch me after?? thats v rood and i will blacklist you from any future giveaway and i dont wanna have to do that !! :c
:star: you have to make a journal or poll advertising this please!! and please be so kind as to link it in your comment so i can keep track /w\
:star: and you have to favorite this journal please ; o ;

and the winner will be picked through a random number generator so if you dont favorite you wont be counted! D: i will check your page when the number is drawn to make sure you have all the other requirements filled ; o ; so please dont try to cheat???

i love you guys so much ok <333 so good luck all you guys and thank you so much for 2,000+ watchers!!!

my to-do list is completely jacked right now otherwise i would give away art too :iconcryforeverplz: but i wont let that discourage me from giving what I can!!

EDIT: this list is getting tiring hh so ill just draw from the favorites! if your number is picked I will go to check your page to make sure you've made a journal and are a watcher!

the giveaway will end tomorrow! (8/24)


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