The Lotrips Remix
If you've ever read a story and thought: "If I were telling it, I would do it differently", or even "I wonder what that other character was thinking?", then this challenge is for you. Just like musical remixes, this project aims to show how differences in vision and style can cast light on stories in a whole new way.
Based on the original "We Invented The Remix" and the multi-fandom "Remix... Redux", the Lotrips Remix aims to give fandom authors the chance to expand their horizons by rewriting one of the stories of a fellow author. And having one of theirs rewritten in turn.
The Lotrips Remix first ran in 2003. You can check out the results of previous years using the links in the menu; if you haven't witnessed a remix before, please do so. It'll help you get a feel of the scope and range allowed. We encourage authors to get as creative as they like, within the boundaries of the project.
How does it work?
Interested participants sign up. They will then be shuffled, and randomly assigned another fandom author (who is also participating in the project). Each participant can then choose one of the stories of that author to rewrite (as long as it's an eligible story - read the fine print below). Note: people who participated in previous years will not be assigned to the same person they mixed before.
In rewriting, the participant can change any stylistic element they like - point of view, structure, mood, length, language style... just about anything. What they can't change is the fundamental story. What would be the point, otherwise? The basic events, people, and times of the story must stay the same. (Questions? See the fine print below.)
All stories will then be collated and put up on the website and community for everyone to read. Who rewrote what will be revealed a few days afterwards.
Sign-ups ends on the 15th of August
Assignments go out on the 18th of August.
Remixes due on the 30th of September. (Roughly six weeks.)
Stories posted on the 4th of October
Authors revealed on the 11th of October.
Think before you sign
We'd appreciate it if you considered carefully the burden of rewriting someone else's story before signing up; it'll take time and creative effort. You need to choose a story, think about it, work on it, (swear, pick a different story, work on that...) and do edits and rewrites. If you won't be able to do this, please don't sign up. If you have to pull out halfway through, it lets down the other participants. Sometimes it's unavoidable, but do realise the commitment. (If you do have to pull out, tell us as early as possible, so we can make arrangements.)
If you haven't participated in the remix before, it would be nice to hear that you have participated in other deadline writing projects before, but you won't be turned back if this is your first time. Just make sure you're aware of the effort involved, and come along and join the fun!
Note: If you have dropped out of the remix in previous years, you will need to be very, very persuasive. Likewise, if you have flaked on other deadline writing projects or broken the rules, you'd best make us believe you will be able to hand in a conforming story on time for this one.
The Fine Print:
Who can sign up?
Not quite anyone who's interested, sorry. To participate, you must have at least three eligible stories (see below) to your credit. The more the merrier, but three is the minimum. Your stories must also be available online: on your own web site, fanfiction.net, mirrormere, or LiveJournal (or other journal system) tags, memories or an index post. If you have more than a few stories, be sure that you include pairing information on the menu page: this is to help remixers sift more quickly through sometimes large archives to find fics they want to remix.
What makes a story "eligible"?
- You wrote it yourself. Your own stories. Co-authored stories are allowed in two cases: if you are signing up as a partnership, or if your co-author offers permission. Co-writing teams are allowed to enter.
- It's a Lotrips (Lord of the Rings, Real People Fiction) story. Yes, het and gen both count. However, to be considerate to those with slightly more delicate sensibilities, please ensure you have three slash stories in your total count.
- It's finished. A person can't really rewrite an unfinished saga.
- It's longer than a drabble. Even two drabbles is fine. Just make sure there's a bit of story for the remixer to get a hold on.
- In addition, there should be a variety of pairings represented in your stories. Or at least more than one. So that participants can actually make a choice, no solid blocks of Viggo/Orlando, or Elijah/Dom, etc. If you only write one pairing, you may provisionally sign up, and we'll see if we can fit you in
Please note that these guidelines are for sign-up only. When remixing, you may choose any LotR RPF story, be it drabble, PWP, het or slash, EXCEPT for the author's nominated safe story, or non-approved co-authored stories. If you have any questions about whether or not the story you want to rewrite is eligible, ask us. Ask us early and ask us often. This will save everyone a lot of trouble.
What precisely can we change in the rewrites?
You can change:
- who is telling the story: if Viggo was the main character, make it Orlando this time, or Liv, or someone else. But don't remove the narrator so far from the action that you're no longer telling the same story.
- how the story is being told -- first person (I said) or third person (he said). Tell it in letters or diary entries. Turn it into a series of drabbles. Or take it from a series of drabbles to a normal narrative.
- what is important -- as soon as you change style and character, different events become the important things. Or do they?
- when a story begins -- you can begin before the original story, or after it (this is new in 2007)
- where a story takes place -- you can make a story AU (alternate universe) as long as the story itself isn't radically changed. If the original takes place in New Zealand, the remix could take place in old Zeeland (A Dutch province) or the isolated planet of New New Zealand. (new in 2007)
- extra details -- with the changes you make, are there gaps? Need Ian to be doing something that wasn't specified in the original? Make it up. Or is that scene about Sean Astin filling the beanbag no longer relevant? Cut it out. The non-vital details of the story are yours to play with. (This can include things like dialogue or sex scenes - use your discretion as to whether they're significant or sideline details, and if in doubt, ask us.)
You cannot change:
- who the story is about - if it's a Viggo/Orlando pairing with godmotherly interference from Liv, that's what it remains, no matter how much you dislike Viggo/Orlando.
- what happens in the story - if Billy bakes a cake or commits suicide, that's what happens. This goes for the ending as well... read more about that below.
- when the story ends - you aren't writing a sequel or prequel: it can start before or after the original story, but it has to end where that story ended.
Hang on, I can't change the ending?
No. At least, not as such. As mentioned, the events of the story are set. You can't change the events of the ending. You can't add a bit to the story, where Bean admits he was lying about not loving Harry, and they end up happily ever after. Nor can you stop the story before the final declaration of love, and leave Karl and David suffering in eternal anguish. The ending is the way it is. But that ending needn't necessarily look the same from the point of view you take as it did in the original. You can't change what happened, but you might be able to shed different light on why it happened, or even how. The more ambiguous the original ending, the greater leeway you have to play with.
Do you really mean it?
Yes. Except when we don't. When it actually comes to the cut-and-thrust of the remix itself, we tend to let creativity rule the day. We don't mind too much if the camera drifts away from what was going on in the original story. We don't mind if you play fast and loose with time and space. If what you want to do with your remix falls within the rules, then awesome, go hard, you rock, no need to run it past us. If you want to do something wildly creative that bends a couple of rules, ask us. Creativity is great: we're 95% certain to say yes. (The 5% is because we rarely, rarely let people change the ending, but hey, ask anyway.) If you don't ask, we're 100% certain to take issue.
Can I choose which author I rewrite, or who rewrites me?
No. You will be randomly assigned an author to rewrite. And someone else will be assigned to rewrite you. Randomly. (The only exception here is that previous remixers can be sure they won't be remixing or remixed by the same author as previous years.)
Please note that this is supposed to be a challenge, and as such, you will be expected to make the most of the assignment you are given. Experiment with new characters, pairings, styles and dynamics. Assignment swaps will only be considered in the most exceptional circumstances.
First, please read the fine print. You will be expected to abide by it. Please note especially the archive requirements (eligible fics, pairing information) and the timeline and due dates.
To sign up, email us (lotrips.remix at gmail .com) and tell us:
- the name you want to appear on the participant list
- your email address
- the location of your stories (web site, journal tag, index page)
- your 'safe' story, if you wish to have one. This story may not be chosen for rewriting.
- which pairings you are not willing to write
- if you are willing to be a back-up author, in case of drop-outs.
At least, we hope we haven't forgotten anything. As always, any questions, ask us.
Msilverstar - ms @ msilverstar . com