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This is a good site to sign up with if you are a budding writer. It's easy to join. At the time I signed-up approximately two years ago, you had a short form to fill out asking you to choose a username, some basic details for security info purposes and an email - pretty standard stuff really.
The site has been designed to give writers the opportunity to showcase their work and receive valuable feedback from potential audiences. Work is categorised into main categories such as, Short Stories, Poetry and Novels and records an approximate reading time so you can select the pieces of work you have time for.
There are two ways to publish your work on the site. You can either publish it as a work in progress, in which case you will receive feedback throughout your writing process. Readers will tell you whether they are bored with the story, whether your characters are weak, whether the length should be extended, you name it. The second way of publishing your work is as a finished piece. The danger with this is that you may not get one person's opinion on the whole book, you'll probably get a lot of individual feedback on various different chapters.
Fanstory regularly hosts competitions on the site. These competitions are only open to premier members. (There are different levels of membership, namely paid and unpaid (premier). You can choose to pay a monthly subscription for a minimum of $2.80). The competitions offer an opportunity for everyone to get involved throughout the year as they appeal to different styles and genres.
Examples of competitions: Poetry Competition - You may be asked to write a sonnet Short Story - You may be given a picture and asked to incorporate it into a short story, novelists may take a chapter from their book if the work is suitable to stand alone without it's surrounding chapters. Characterisation competition - you may be given a photo and asked to write a description of this character and their habitat
Members are pretty proactive and you can usually spot the dedicated members as they publish and rate loads of work. They operate a little like Ciao in the sense that evey time new work is published you can have alerts sent to your email, people can add you to their circle of trust, ask for alerts re: your new publishings.
There are general rules in regards to leaving ratings and comments. It operates on a star system where you rate what level the work is at e.g. Poor, needs a lot more work but good start, Good, but needs some improvement, Excellent, ready for publishing. Each piece of work when published on the site normally pays each rater a fee. This can vary between 1p and £1.20 in fanstory currency. You may also claim little treasures that people attach to their work. For example, there are icons called the lucky leprechaun, and the treasure test. They give you extra points, extra currency, banners to place on your work so that they stay in the 'new work' section for longer.
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