Reviewing the 2012 Author SurvivorbyCinner©
If you look just beneath my Scorecard for this year's Author Survivor Contest you will see that I've been having to use some motivation techniques to keep myself going. I've created two additional posts on my thread; both cataloguing my progress. The first thread looks at the stories that I've submitted to the quality control personnel at Lit while the other looks at the stuff that I have in my "Work in Progress" folder.
I remember thinking long and hard before posting these two entries under my scorecard because like everything for me I have also thought about the strategy that would be necessary to "win" this contest. For the record, I read the rules before entering, and realised immediately that since I had already missed two of the special contests I had no chance at all of doing this since it would be impossible to gain the 30 bonus points for entering all six special contests. Even if by some freak of nature and I was able to write the 30 extra stories that it would take to catch up on that there would also be the matter of the 10 lost point opportunities because I learned about the Survivor Contest only when I stopped to read the winning entry to the Earth Day Contest. So for me, there is no chance of winning the first prize for this contest this year, yet I can tell you, unequivocally, I am already a winner here!
If I am honest with myself and with you, I would admit that I do not think that I would have entered the Survivor Contest this year even if I had learned about it earlier. For me it was a spontaneous decision, as are most of my decisions, to reach for something within myself. The decision to enter the Contest this year was born of a desire to be more, to move beyond the fear of criticism that has held me in thrall for so long and in so many areas of my life. I needed to put my work out there. I needed to get beyond writing stories for my friends in which they and I inhabit a fantasy world together.
It has worked! Admitting the readers of Lit has exploded any chance of a fantasy for me because, as I've said in my Overcoming Disappointment submission for this Contest, the comments of some of my readers have been less than desirable. I comfort myself with the knowledge that, even though these are still early days for me as a contributor to Lit, I have grown beyond my wildest dreams.
For a start, I AM AN AUTHOR ON LITEROTICA! Wait, there's more! I have a growing number of fans! I have people who have "favourited" some of my stories and poems! I had someone include ME among his FAVOURITE authors!!!!! I have readers sending me story ideas that they want to see me develop for them! I have people making suggestions to me about what I can do for the categories in the contest that I have not yet tackled! The fact that I've managed to write stories and POEMS in 17 categories (one still not published) and I haven't even done the ones like "Interracial" and "Romance" that I thought would be easy when I started here, is unbelievable! Who knew that I was a poet? Even I didn't know this before entering this Contest. Incredibly, I've had something published in "Erotic Horror"! I thought that I would have needed to use an Immunity there for sure. I regret using an Immunity for "SciFi & Fantasy" last week because I think that I have a doozy in mind for that! Now I don't even want to see my number come up in the Immunity thread because I WANT to try to fill my scorecard without help! I have had people telling me that they think that with more practice, I could be good enough to go mainstream! Most unbelievable, though is the fact that I met my new Dom through the feedback mechanism to one of my stories! Frankly, I can't believe any of the things that have happened to me since joining this contest in April.
Yet, these are not the areas of growth to which I was referring earlier. Beyond the good things that have happened here, there are the other things as well. The growth of a thicker skin to contend with the anonymous comments that offer little by way of constructive criticism, but much by way of attack, leaps to mind. I will not deny that because of some of the comments that I've read I have wondered on many occasions why I bother with the Contest.
In a real sense though, THIS was why I entered the Survivor Contest this year. I realised one day late in April that I needed to get over myself and join the human race in its endeavours to leave a legacy of some sort for the future. You may disagree that leaving porn on the internet is a legacy worthy of the future, but the truth is that if you have read any of my stories you will see that they are not just about smut. At their core, my stories promote tolerance of difference, they embrace authenticity to one's soul, they support learning forgiveness of self. I have tried to develop characters who live full lives that include smut in my stories. I have done this because I happen to be one of those people who cannot see what the big deal is about having sex. I see sex as a celebration of life. Certainly, without it, none of us would be here to either read or write for Lit - literally.
Through my participation in this Contest I have moved away from the last vestiges of my ultra-conservatism to the more libertarian principles that I espouse. Through this Contest I have come to ask why so many of us demonise the way of life of others. Because of the research that I have been doing for this contest I was able to explain to my classmates some of the political and social issues surrounding trans-persons only last week. In doing so, I think that I have enriched not only my life but those of my colleagues as well. I believe that through them and me, Jamaica is enriched as well, since here, there are now people walking around and interacting with our fellow Jamaicans who are less judgemental of the world around us. Can there, possibly, be anything wrong with that?
So, all things considered, I am already a MAJOR winner here in the 2012 Author Survivor Contest on Lit.
Editor's Note: For more information on the Annual Author Survivor Contest, click here.