Sunday, October 24, 2010

HASA news - Challenges

In this week’s news: current and prospective Challenges, and the Nuzgûl of the Month.

Birthday Challenges

The October Birthday Challenge is still going on, and there is a week left to make a request or write a birthday drabble.

Not sure what the birthday cards are about? Have a look at the stories already written this year.

Current and closing Challenges

October 2010 Birthday Cards - closes October 31

Prospective Challenges

Challenges are born from Prospective Challenges, and the Prospective Challenges Forum is where you’ll find out what other people would like to spring on unsuspecting authors... If you have any ideas you want to share, why not head over to the Challenges Forum; or be inspired by what is already there and pick up an older idea instead?

Nuzgûl of the Month

Just as Challenges come from Prospective Challenges, Prospective Challenges come from Nuzgûl, and Nuzgûl need attention to grow from tiny ideas into big stories. Step into the Nuzgûl hutch. The bunnies don’t bite (much). And who knows what ideas you may come out with?

The Nuzgûl of the Month!
Since there’s still a full week to go in October, no new Nuzgûl yet... instead a quick repeat showing of this month's offering, the oliphaunt: Show me feär.

Come on over to the Nuzgûl of the Month Workshop. There’s still time to write it.

Thank you for reading at HASA. Have fun!


Saturday, October 16, 2010

HASA Reviewed Stories October 2010

Since the previous Bulletin, 3 stories have been reviewed and there are currently also 8 stories in review. Reviews couldn’t exist without authors and reviewers. So Thank You all for your work. BUT... we always need reviewers!

As I type this, there are 8 stories waiting to be reviewed (remember to log in before you follow the link).

Member participation is crucial for reviews. The more people are involved in reviewing, the more opinions are represented. Just as importantly, having more people involved means that stories pass through review more quickly - which is good for everyone. If you are an active reviewer, why not go and check out a story?

Or, if you are a writer, take the plunge and submit a story for review (and when you do, remember: Put one in, take one out.

By submitting a story for review, you are asking nine other members to read and evaluate it. So why not do for the other authors who have a story in review what you'd like other reviewers to do for you: check out one of the stories already in review and give it a read.

Becoming a reviewer
If you're not an active reviewer, but think you can spare a bit of time... – even if you just review one or two stories in a month, every review is welcome. If you are logged in, you can sign up here if you've been a member of HASA for thirty days or more.

Daunted by the idea of reviewing? Don’t worry, reviewing at its simplest comes down to asking yourself: “Would I recommend this story to someone?” Then, whether the answer is 'yes' or 'no', you can make a choice from the capsule reasons to clarify your decision. If you want to, you can add a few more words to convey what you (dis)liked about the story, but just the capsule reason is perfectly fine as well.

And remember: even if you think you're too critical or not critical enough: your review is only one of nine, and all points of view are welcome. Not every reviewer has to review every story and in the end it does all level out to a balanced judgement.

Reviewed story spotlight
These stories have passed through review since the previous bulletin. Congratulations to all authors; well done!

The Sell-sword and the Prince by Lady Bluejay
Rating: General
Genre: Action
Era: 3rd Age - The Stewards
Summary: The Battle of the Pelennor was not Imrahil's first meeting with Isildur's Heir. Years before the future king led a young prince in a daring raid on Umbar, and then nudged him towards finding a wife. The story starts as a high adventure and ends as a light- hearted romance.

A Tree Grows in the Pass by Larner
Rating: General
Genre: Drama
Era: 4th Age
Summary: During their first term of service with the Rangers of Ithilien the son of King Elessar and the son of the Prince of Ithilien, inspired by tales told of the visit by the Ringbearers, decide to seek certain relics within the Pass of Cirith Ungol.

The Measure of a Man by Virtuella
Rating: General
Genre: General
Era: 3rd Age - Post-Ring War
Summary: Déoric has lost a leg and his best friend on the Pelennor. He is set to lose even more things after his return to Edoras, but Éomer discovers the young man's unusual talent. A coming-of-age story.


Sunday, October 10, 2010

HASA news - October 2010 week 2 - advertisements

This week's news features an announcement by Anglachel about advertising on HASA.

HASA will start displaying advertisements in next few weeks. It was a hard decision to make. This post is to explain the reasoning for the change to the site's previously ad-free environment.

One of the reasons HASA was created was to provide a place to read Tolkien fanfiction that did not bombard the site visitors with obnoxious advertisements. In the early Naughties, web advertisements were hitting their stride with invasive, annoying, bad-mannered and downright offensive crud. Web browsers didn't have ad-blocking capabilities, so the only refuge was an ad-free site.

For seven years, I've been able to keep the site advertisement free. I've been able to rely on voluntary donations by site members and the reading public alike. [...]

Read the full announcement here on HASA. Of course, you can still donate if you prefer, but clicking an advert now and again helps to pay for the site hosting as well.

Thank you for reading at HASA!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

HASA news - Birthdays and stories

October birthdays and links to the stories written or updated in September.

October Birthday Challenge

Is your birthday in October, and would you like a drabble about your favourite character or topic? You can request it here.

Not sure what the birthday cards are about? Have a look at stories written for previous requests.

September Stories

All of us writers love feedback. It is the lembas and miruvor that sustains us as we write our story, and leaving a few words about a story you read is always a nice thing to do, whether the story is new or old.

Every fifteen minutes HASA highlights a story chosen at random from the Reviewed and General stories in the archive. Read the currently featured story on our front page.

Many talented writers are publishing every day. In September:

--- 6 Reviewed Stories were published or updated.
--- 33 General Stories were published or updated.
--- 3 Beta Stories were updated.
(Please note, you need to be logged in to view beta stories.)

Thank you for reading at HASA. Enjoy!

~Nath ~

Friday, October 1, 2010

Donations needed for September and October

After paying September fees, our account is at -$83.00. The $150 bill
for October will be due soon. HASA is a fee-free Web site, run for the
enjoyment of quality JRRT fanfiction & it depends on member & reader
donations to pay hosting fees.

The hosting fee pays for the dedicated server HASA needs to provide the
features and fun visitors love - stories, comments, forums, alerts,
challenges and more. Since funding is running behind we've begun looking
at advertisements to supplement donations.

If you haven't donated yet to help support HASA, please consider doing
so; any support will be timely and greatly appreciated. HASA gets a lot
of traffic and offers many great stories and features. We want to be
able to keep these stories and resources online and accessible.

If you're a little short on spare change at the moment, donations of time are
always appreciated. There's an archive full of stories just waiting for
comments, authors who would dearly love an email complimenting them on
their work, challenges that need entries, playlists that need to be
created, and forums begging for discussions. If you are a reviewer,
check out a story today. If you aren't a reviewr, no better time than
now to sign up. If you are an author, please consider donating a new story.

Thanks for enjoying HASA!