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Thread: Formalized procedure for becoming a "trusted author"?

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  1. #1
    Inverarity
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    Formalized procedure for becoming a "trusted author"?

    On some other forums, there are procedures for becoming a "trusted author" who can upload chapters without waiting for modly approval. Usually it's something like submitting X chapters that have not needed revision or correction, with some discretion on the part of the mods (.e.g., if some of those chapters are "borderline," the mods might want to see a little more consistency).

    My understanding is that MNFF does have "trusted authors," though I have no idea who has attained this lofty status. I also understand that it's pretty much assigned on an ad hoc basis. I am wondering, when there may be half a dozen mods assigned to a given category, how the mods remember how consistently any one author has been able to write to MNFF standards.

    More trusted authors would mean shorter queues. This site has one of the highest standards for validating chapters that I have seen, which I appreciate (as much as I gnash my teeth when one of my chapters gets shelled for typos, a non-italicized spell incantation, or thick Orkney dialog ), but it's got to be a huge amount of work for the mods. Are there really so few authors able to avoid getting rejected consistently, or would it be possible to preserve the site's standards while reducing the number of chapters the mods have to personally read?

  2. #2
    Kcharles
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    I think that the only trusted authors are mods or past mods. I personaly think it's an ok idea, I think that it might have problems with it though (what if a little sibling/other evil friend comes onto your account and submits something horible, even though that wouldn't likely happen)

    I think it's a good idea though, but it might have problems and I'm not sure if it will be accepted.

  3. #3
    Savannah Hen Slytherin
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    I think this is a really good idea. So often in contests, there is a rule which says that if you're a validated author you should do such and such a thing but it also says that if you're not one you shouldn't ask about it. I've always wanted to know how people achieve this status. It would be good if there was a set out procedure.

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  4. #4
    Ultimate Cosmic Power Hufflepuff
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    We already have a formal procedure for the creation of Validated authors. Our "trusted" authors are more than just mods and ex-mods, but they are nominated by moderators and then confirmed by three others. Our system is fair and organised, it just goes on behind the scenes. The list is relatively large, though not huge, but we see this as a reflection of our standards. Our VAs are the best of the best, and they have earned the status.

    If you wish to join them, you simply have to perfect your fictions.



  5. #5
    Marauder by Midnight
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    To add on to what Roxy Black said, you'd be surprised by how much a mod can remember from modding in the queue. While you can't expect us to remember that the color of Lily's dress robes were ruby in the previous chapter and periwinkle in this chapter, I can assure you that we generally know who's a consistently good author and who's...well, not.

    I know there are some faults in our system though and I hope that we can iron them out to produce a more standardized way of validating an author

  6. #6
    First Year Ravenclaw
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roxy Black
    We already have a formal procedure for the creation of Validated authors.

    If you wish to join them, you simply have to perfect your fictions.
    I never knew MNFF had 'Validated authors'. Wouldn't part of a 'formal procedure' be having somewhere on the site that an author like Inverarity can read the specific rules of how to become a Validated author and know what they must work on to meet the requirement? Could you direct us to where you document your standards? Because just 'perfect your fictions' is rather vague for a 'formal procedure'.

    Half a Wizarding World away... an unwanted child finds magic.

  7. #7
    Love_is_4ever
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roxy Black
    They are nominated by moderators and then confirmed by three others. Our system is fair and organised, it just goes on behind the scenes.
    JCCollier, I think Roxy answered everything just there. If you're good enough to be a validated author, mods would notice you, and if more than a couple of mods consider you worthy you'll be. . .

    ~ Samarie

  8. #8
    Nundu
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    Would a formal beta system not relieve some of the pressure on the mods? Other highly respected HP fanfic sites have a system in place that requires all fictions to be reviewed by a set of beta readers. Only after the author and beta reader (who must pass a very stringent exam to be so designated) have worked to resolve all spelling/grammar/plot and pacing issues can the story move forward.

    I know the mods work very hard to catch this sort of thing, but just this week I attempted to read a story posted in which the grammar and spelling were horrendous! The plot had some merit, but the pacing was poor. Perhaps the story has improved, but I couldn't even get through the first chapter. Work with a good beta could make this story a readable piece of fan fiction.

    Moderators have enough on their plates just moderating a forum! Betas could lessen their load and improve the quality of fan fiction.

  9. #9
    Love_is_4ever
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nundu
    Would a formal beta system not relieve some of the pressure on the mods? Other highly respected HP fanfic sites have a system in place that requires all fictions to be reviewed by a set of beta readers. Only after the author and beta reader (who must pass a very stringent exam to be so designated) have worked to resolve all spelling/grammar/plot and pacing issues can the story move forward.

    I know the mods work very hard to catch this sort of thing, but just this week I attempted to read a story posted in which the grammar and spelling were horrendous! The plot had some merit, but the pacing was poor. Perhaps the story has improved, but I couldn't even get through the first chapter. Work with a good beta could make this story a readable piece of fan fiction.

    Moderators have enough on their plates just moderating a forum! Betas could lessen their load and improve the quality of fan fiction.
    The boards have section where you can find betas advetise their services, and there are betas that are PI accredited, meaning they are the best of the best. To be PI accredited, they had to pass a complex exam that test their abilities in betaing.

    The mods always ask [read beg] that every author use at least one beta in their stories before submitting it, because two heads think better than one, and when one writes something, the mind tends to jump the simplest errors.

    ~ Samarie

  10. #10
    Amaterasu
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    While I think the question is more out of a little pique rather that sheer curiosity, it's still a valid question, one I think hasn't been asked of the Moderators often enough before and one that they should have addressed completely in the past so that those that haven't been validated would know that it is not a matter of pick and choose or favoritism. Quite literally, Moderators remember those authors that they don't have to reject. They remember the ones that come through consistently well-written and without glaring errors. Many validated authors are former moderators, but there are quite a few that are nothing but simply the best authors on the site.

    My understanding also of 'perfecting your work' does not only consist of being wonderful with words, but also not needing someone to edit any grammatical errors, etc.
    I find this to be wholly inaccurate and egotistical. No matter how good the author, even professionals need some help with editing. To think that if you just try harder you'll get to the point where you don't need that person to edit your errors is simply setting yourself up for failure. Take a look through the stories of the moderators, former mods and validated authors. Each of their chapters has a line thanking their betas (or it should - all of them have one). Even the 'best of the best' on this site need a little help clearing up their errors and 'way with words'.

    There are a very few fanfiction authors that can get away with not using a beta, however the mandatory beta system does not work. I was one for one of those sites a few years ago, and there simply aren't enough betas of such quality on any given site to keep up with the sheer number of stories submitted. With all the whining that goes on about long queue times, I would think that this idea would be immediately rejected because it would only delay what is already a 'problem' for most authors. But even if every author agreed to the system, there just aren't enough betas. Not to mention that you're asking the betas to read whatever comes across.

    The current beta system that is in place allows authors the choice - get a beta and stand a better chance of going through the queue without a problem - or don't - and face up to the fact that you're likely to get rejected. It also gives the betas a choice. They advertise their services on the site, or respond to requests, but they only have to beta the stories that they are interested in and have time for. In many ways, beta-ing is just as draining and time-consuming a project as modding, depending on the number of authors one takes on. In some ways it is harder. A mod has only to read the story and, if it is riddled with errors and plot problems, reject it. A beta has to look at that same story and try to help the author fix those problems.

    MNFF has always, in the past, been about quality. But it is not the moderators' job to make sure you get a beta - and quite frankly, some of the stories are beyond help, even with a beta. Put simply, you'd be forcing betas to try to correct things that are impossible to correct. Talk about cruel and unusual punishment. No, the mandatory beta system does not work and for a site that gets close to five hundred submissions per week, ninety percent of which will have to be rejected for poor quality, the logistics are impossible. While the point is quality over quantity, to implement the system you have in mind, at least half the hopefuls would have to be denied the ability to even submit stories just to make it possible to get a story posted in less than a month.

    And let's be honest here - while most authors consider it something of an honor to be accepted for the first time on MNFF after several rejections, how many authors would care about that honor if it took them a month to get a story posted?

    However, the original question was answered and I will leave it to the mods to determine how to address the other suggestions put forth in this thread. I just couldn't resist putting in my two Knuts on this matter.

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