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> Elder Scrolls Community competition
HaploTR
post May 25 2008, 06:41 PM
Post #81


Retainer

Joined: 1-April 08
From: Celibacy



Redsrock -

The entries were judged against each other, not against a grading scale system of 100 or 10. This means that the rankings are not 'grades', but rather placements. Think of the Olympics, with 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place. Our system was the exact same, except without the grades that determine each place. Our placements were awarded sort of arbitrarily, we felt that X was generally better than Y, but not as good as Z, so Z would be above X, which would be above Y. It would take much longer to go through and grade them all specifically, as we would have to grade the content and not just the image.

Also, the reason there was a top 5 instead of top 10 for the long division is because there were only 8 entries. We didn't think it was fair to the dozens of entries in the short and medium category that didn't place, just because there weren't as many long entries. Don't forget, the long stories were often hundreds of pages long.

Having a tighter competition with fewer placements (which means more to those who placed) is more fair than feeling like they got cheated out of a hard-earned placement in a real contest. If 'everyone wins' or gets placed the feeling is diminished somewhat.

---
Everyone, please note that Alex updated his scores post to include a note about the long story division.

There was, in actuality, a three-way tie between the top three contenders. The tie-breaker was another judge reading only the top three entries and deciding their placement against each other. That was the cause of the short delay, which we are very sorry for.

As such I think extra congratulations are in order for the top three rankings of the long category for having such well-written stories. In case anyone is interested, the pre-tiebreaker scores were:

1. The story of Trey, Treydog (20)
1. We are merely shadows, Erika Webb (20)
1. The Tale of Matthias Etanne, Hadrian (20)
4. Bloodlust, The Metal Mallet (16)
5. Dance of the ja-Kha'jay, Lakyan (12)

This post has been edited by HaploTR: May 25 2008, 06:41 PM


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0rimus
post May 26 2008, 12:03 AM
Post #82


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Joined: 11-April 08
From: Reno, NV



I'd like a PM, I'd also like to see all eight entries stacked against one another, not just the top five. Cuz' now not only did I not win (which I don't mind anyway) but now I feel robbed of knowing where I stand. Was I in sixth place? The very bottom? That's the whole reason I entered. Pardon my Deustch, but telling the people left out that we are tied for the worst is pretty, uh, messed up. We all know someone had to lose, but that's just it: one person had to lose, not three.
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HaploTR
post May 26 2008, 12:34 AM
Post #83


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Joined: 1-April 08
From: Celibacy



Technically if you didn't get 1st, you lost, so there are 7 losers and 1 winner, but lets not be so pessimistic. Your story didn't get any points, as it wasn't in any of the three judges' Top 5 list. Points were awarded (0 for 8th through 6th, 2 for 5th place, 4 for 4th place, 6 for 3rd place, 8 for 2nd place, and 10 for 1st place) by each judge to each entry. So entries that didn't make the top five either received zero points or were awarded too few points.

So really, you have more of a right to gripe than that redsrock fellow; he got two whole points more than you.

Regarding your entry: 'A' comes before 'e' in daedra. Normally we don't criticize spelling, but when a word appears throughout a story as much as this one, it should probably be spelled correctly. Your story was somewhat choppy in key places, and often failed to elaborate on many of the points made throughout. I would have liked a more developed plot, personally.

This post has been edited by HaploTR: May 26 2008, 12:36 AM


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MstrOfPppts
post May 26 2008, 12:36 AM
Post #84


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Joined: 26-May 08
From: Slovenia



Hi everybody!

I'm Andraž from Slovenia and have just registered on this forum. The reason is that I participated in the contest and finished second! Yeah man!

So first I'd like to say thanks a lot to Alexander and all the judges, who had quite a hard work - no doubt. Congratulations to all participants and all the winners especialy Adventurous Putty who beat me (: I realy need to read all those entries emidietly when my study obligations are ower.

@ redrock: simply take it this way: you scored 1002 points out of 1030 which doesn't look so bad as you're describing it. And it also makes sense, since there were thousands of other people out there who could also enter the competition but either didn't take time, didn't bother or didn't even dare ...

@ Orimus: judges have a hard work and I belive they were doing their best. Since there's a tie of stories having no points, there is no point in having a judge making order of those. The judging system was as it was and noone meened no harm to anybody. They will probably make it better next time. But I do agree that they should mention all the entries in the results making them all score the same place.

@ both: scoring no points or 2 is far from meaning your story sux. It just means that the other were slightly better!

@ Alexander: thanks again and keep up the good work! I'll be visiting this place from time to time, but since I'm registered to many different forums, I'd like to recieve an email notification for any future competitions if that is possible.

Best regards!

This post has been edited by MstrOfPppts: May 26 2008, 12:37 AM


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Jordy
post May 26 2008, 12:55 AM
Post #85


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Joined: 12-April 08
From: UK



QUOTE(0rimus @ May 26 2008, 12:03 AM) *

I'd like a PM, I'd also like to see all eight entries stacked against one another, not just the top five. ... Pardon my Deustch, but telling the people left out that we are tied for the worst is pretty, uh, messed up. We all know someone had to lose, but that's just it: one person had to lose, not three.



The downside of that is that it's effectively singling out one person as being bottom. I've seen that happen before in a fanfic competition where a category had only 4 entries, and a 1st 2nd and 3rd were announced, leaving one entrant in the position of not only being "last", but also the only one to not get a placing (and it's not that her story was significantly poorer than the others, there wasn't much to choose between them)

She was quite upset and felt that given the paucity of entries, announcing only the winner would have been more tactful.

If you want to know exactly where you stood, of course that's your right, but I'm not sure making it all public would have been the best idea...

If I were to make one comment about the way the competition was judged (and it isn't meant as an attack on the judges, or a whine) I'd have to say I was a bit surprised that spelling and grammar weren't taken into account - IMHO, a couple of typos aren't a problem but when there are repeated spelling mistakes, and grammar errors of the sort that make sentences sound awkward, then doesn't that affect the quality of the whole story?

Edit: OK, I see from HaploTR's last post that spelling was considered...I guess I see quite a few fanfic stories that seem to draw unqualified praise despite having some really unwieldy sentences and odd choices of words, so my POV would be that it actually helps us all improve if such things are made a factor in the judging of competitions.

And note that I'm not picking on anyone's entry here. Congratulations to the winners, of course, and I hope you all enjoy your prizes.

This post has been edited by Jordy: May 26 2008, 01:06 AM
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Burnt Sierra
post May 26 2008, 01:06 AM
Post #86


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Yeah, of course it does. In all honesty I did include spelling, grammar, sentence construction etc in the way I viewed the entries I judged. I just didn't specifically judge it on that criteria - but it was very much in my mind as to my overall view of the piece. That's what we meant, it wasn't scored on how many spelling mistakes, or misused words there were, but those facts obviously contribute to the overall impression we came away with.
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Jordy
post May 26 2008, 01:09 AM
Post #87


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Joined: 12-April 08
From: UK



Fine, BSD-IES, thanks for the clarification smile.gif
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redsrock
post May 26 2008, 01:11 AM
Post #88


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QUOTE(HaploTR @ May 26 2008, 12:34 AM) *



So really, you have more of a right to gripe than that redsrock fellow; he got two whole points more than you.

I will gripe all I want, when I want, how I want, and wherever I want. Oooooh, I scored two points high, so that's mean I don't have near as much of a right to gripe. *EXTREME sarcasm*. Whatever, man, you go ahead and think what you want....

This post has been edited by redsrock: May 26 2008, 01:13 AM


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0rimus
post May 26 2008, 01:13 AM
Post #89


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Joined: 11-April 08
From: Reno, NV



QUOTE(HaploTR @ May 25 2008, 04:34 PM) *

Technically if you didn't get 1st, you lost, so there are 7 losers and 1 winner, but lets not be so pessimistic. Your story didn't get any points, as it wasn't in any of the three judges' Top 5 list. Points were awarded (0 for 8th through 6th, 2 for 5th place, 4 for 4th place, 6 for 3rd place, 8 for 2nd place, and 10 for 1st place) by each judge to each entry. So entries that didn't make the top five either received zero points or were awarded too few points.

So really, you have more of a right to gripe than that redsrock fellow; he got two whole points more than you.

Regarding your entry: 'A' comes before 'e' in daedra. Normally we don't criticize spelling, but when a word appears throughout a story as much as this one, it should probably be spelled correctly. Your story was somewhat choppy in key places, and often failed to elaborate on many of the points made throughout. I would have liked a more developed plot, personally.


Thanks for giving me something to chew on. And I was already aware of the aforementioned bits; what I meant was that someone had to come last, in eighth place. Normally I'd agree with the whole "don't take it personally, it's just a game," kind of philosophy, but it just isn't. With all the stories ranked first to eight, I could go back and compare and contrast, but I can't without knowing where I am. Going from just outside the "winners corner" (sixth place) to the bottom is alot of difference. I'll admit something: I started writing only after hearing about the competition. I didn't join this site and the competition for the prizes, but to see where others think I am as a writer. I don't do this for fun, I find the act of typing and writing painful, but because I love the stories, and am planning on writing as a career. When I looked down at the results, I got that drum roll as I dramatically slid the page down. After checking in for a whole month, I'd finally get something. Instead I got nothing. My grin faded as I saw that not only did I not even get fifth in ANY of the three judges picks, but that it ended there: Not even worth a simple #8 Heraldry and Heretics by Steve Wimer. Nothing. It felt like no one had even read my story at all. I can't really say I appreciate the judges holding this competition as it feels like they didn't even read my 49 page story. Which, while yes, as I said, I didn't start till the competition, but I poured my sweat and blood into this thing. I wanted something short (at least for a long catagory) but filled with depth and realism. Two out of three of Haplo's points are spelling and grammatical. I bought a sword so I could feel what real swordplay was like, even inviting some friends over to spar. I did extensive reasearch on both the TES world, and real medieval and Roman times. I even got in a fight at school to feel the real kinetisism of a full-on brawl(not solely for the story, obviously). I spent hours talking to aquantinces to get a taste of real personalities. Obviously the judges must enjoy reading somewhat, otherwise this would have never taken place, so the judges get the benefit of reading my story, and what do I get: A slap in the face. I'm sorry for wasting your time, and my own for something I though might acctually get mentioned. I'm sorry for trying so damn hard. Maybe, in the end my story just sucked, but I cannot see it that way, so I must be blind and stupid. I'm not being dramatic, I'm not crying at my computer as I write this. It's like handing in a 49 page essay to a teacher and getting back... nothing. And failing the class at the end of the year. All I got is this: "What was the point?" I'm not angry or jealous, or anything like that. I am confused mellow.gif
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redsrock
post May 26 2008, 01:17 AM
Post #90


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Exactly, Orimus. Well said...


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0rimus
post May 26 2008, 01:27 AM
Post #91


Evoker

Joined: 11-April 08
From: Reno, NV



QUOTE(Jordy @ May 25 2008, 04:55 PM) *

QUOTE(0rimus @ May 26 2008, 12:03 AM) *

I'd like a PM, I'd also like to see all eight entries stacked against one another, not just the top five. ... Pardon my Deustch, but telling the people left out that we are tied for the worst is pretty, uh, messed up. We all know someone had to lose, but that's just it: one person had to lose, not three.



The downside of that is that it's effectively singling out one person as being bottom. I've seen that happen before in a fanfic competition where a category had only 4 entries, and a 1st 2nd and 3rd were announced, leaving one entrant in the position of not only being "last", but also the only one to not get a placing (and it's not that her story was significantly poorer than the others, there wasn't much to choose between them)

She was quite upset and felt that given the paucity of entries, announcing only the winner would have been more tactful.

If you want to know exactly where you stood, of course that's your right, but I'm not sure making it all public would have been the best idea...

If I were to make one comment about the way the competition was judged (and it isn't meant as an attack on the judges, or a whine) I'd have to say I was a bit surprised that spelling and grammar weren't taken into account - IMHO, a couple of typos aren't a problem but when there are repeated spelling mistakes, and grammar errors of the sort that make sentences sound awkward, then doesn't that affect the quality of the whole story?

Edit: OK, I see from HaploTR's last post that spelling was considered...I guess I see quite a few fanfic stories that seem to draw unqualified praise despite having some really unwieldy sentences and odd choices of words, so my POV would be that it actually helps us all improve if such things are made a factor in the judging of competitions.

And note that I'm not picking on anyone's entry here. Congratulations to the winners, of course, and I hope you all enjoy your prizes.



QUOTE(Jordy @ May 25 2008, 05:09 PM) *

Fine, BSD-IES, thanks for the clarification smile.gif



I just tried to convice myself that having the competition at all was better than without it, but I still can't believe it. Also, I agree that the placing doesn't need to be public, it's just that I'd rather be known as the Jew that rose up against the Nazis, not as just another corpse among the millions, unknown. Also, I was explicitly told that grammar and spelling were not to even be a slight factor, otherwise I'd have put more work into that. Again with the essay analogy: Teacher hands you an project; she says "Do your essay on WW2, but don't go into the Holocaust". And then you get a low score because, well dang, you didn't write about the Holocaust. I was trying to make my STORY excellent, which I think it was, with a total work time of 15 or so days, most of which I didn't have access to a computer or my story. So yes I cut corners, but my description, characters, and plot hardly suffered from it. My family, friends, and myself can say it was a great stroy all they want, but without outside critique, again: "What was the point?"
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redsrock
post May 26 2008, 01:31 AM
Post #92


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Yeah, I totally agree again, Orimus. It's like a slap to the face of everyone that didn't get scored high enough to even make the list. It's terrible, absolutely terrible. Especially when someone I know entered a story that is ten times as good as mine (and without the spelling mistakes that were NOT supposed to matter), and they got a 5, a mere three point difference from my story. The scoring is terrbile, absolutely terrible. yeah, yeah, call me a whiner, I don't really care right about now.

The right people won, I give you that, but the way the scoring went is absolutely horrendous. Very pathetic...


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0rimus
post May 26 2008, 01:39 AM
Post #93


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Joined: 11-April 08
From: Reno, NV



More analogies. You're in court, you state your case, show hard evidence, given only a short deadline, and the jurers come back and condemn you to death, with no explination. You can ask why later, but you're already annoyed, sitting in a jail cell.

Your friend shoots you in the foot, your emotions surge, but you can't really do anything. You wait patiently and try to calm down. (And after a while I have calmed a great deal). But it doesn't change the fact you got shot in the foot.

Oh, and congrats to the winners. I was so distracted by this I haven't even got around to saying that.
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Burnt Sierra
post May 26 2008, 02:03 AM
Post #94


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Oh for God's sake. We can't give you a specific final rundown on how you scored, because like we've already said only the top five picks for each judge were picked.

Think about it. We have to judge consistently - that means the same judging system for each section - short, medium and long. Do you honestly believe those who judged the short stories should have rated them from 1-30? Maybe given each one a specific percentage? That is totally unrealistic. All the judges have done this for love, in their free time after work or whatever. How much time do you think we all have? I work full time, live with my fiance and have been spending almost all of my free time reading entries. On top of which we had a deadline to judge by. There is no perfect system of judging, fullstop. We've done the best we could.

As for the spelling issue, which I'm amazed is an issue at all, we didn't specifically mark stories down on that. The point Haplo was making was that a key word, Daedra, which I think we'd all agree is fairly important in a TES story was misspelt ALL the way through the ENTIRE story. It didn't get marked down because of that specifically but it does SCREAM sloppy and unedited. Let's be honest, that is not the impression you want to give in a story you've entered in a competition.

Finally, like I already said, we can't give you a final rundown, as we don't have one. I can give you my final table that I used myself though. I'll do this for this category (long) only, seeing as there were only 8 entries. I will not do it for the medium category, as I didn't rate them from 1 to bloody 27 (one of the judges had to drop out, so I ended up being one of the judges for that as well, which is how I've spent my last week), I literally did just pick my ten favourite for that, then chose which order they went in. I am prepared to show my ten finalists for the medium section if requested though.

My long story table ran like this:

1. The Story of Trey
2. The Tale of Matthias Etanne
3. Dance of the ja-Kha'jay
4. Bloodlust
5. We Are Merely Shadows
6. The Accounts of Rayden
7. Knife
8. Heraldry and Heretics

Sidenote: We Are Merely Shadows and The Accounts of Rayden were tied in fifth place in my original ballot. I asked the opinion of the other judges if I could have a tie, and the general consensus was that it would complicate matters. I reread them both and made the difficult decision you see above.

Can this please put a stop to this now? We tried the best we could, in the time we had, in amongst all the other things going on in our lives to judge as well as possible. Sadly irritating things like working, paying the mortgage and bills keep getting in the way. If someone wants to pay me to be a judge, so I don't have to work, I'm sure I could have done it better. Sadly, no-one has offered to hire me to read and judge fanfics full time. I wish they would...

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redsrock
post May 26 2008, 02:12 AM
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Yeah, I understand that, BSD, but I still don't agree. And getting mad and telling us to stop will not work. AND telling about your real life worries won't help either. i don't need that story, I know how it is.

Try going to school, working 30+ hours a week, working as Sports Editor for your school newspapers, and going through 4 different surgeries in a four month period, AND going to physical therapy for those surgeries 2 sometimes three times a week. I know what a hectic schedule is, so don't give me that story...


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Burnt Sierra
post May 26 2008, 02:28 AM
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QUOTE(redsrock @ May 26 2008, 02:12 AM) *

Yeah, I understand that, BSD, but I still don't agree. And getting mad and telling us to stop will not work. AND telling about your real life worries won't help either. i don't need that story, I know how it is.

Try going to school, working 30+ hours a week, working as Sports Editor for your school newspapers, and going through 4 different surgeries in a four month period, AND going to physical therapy for those surgeries 2 sometimes three times a week. I know what a hectic schedule is, so don't give me that story...


I asked you to stop - actually it wasn't just aimed at you - not told you to. You have the right to ask, but the answer will remain the same I'm afraid. As for the hectic schedule bit, I'm simply pointing out that this contest wasn't the only thing we had to do. As you know you have to juggle things as best you can. That's what we did. You've judged contests yourself, you know it isn't easy, you have to strike a balance. I've posted up my results, in order, as requested. I can't give you the other judges results, as I don't know 6-8th place for them. If they want to post that they can. What else were you guys wanting, I thought that was what you both asked for.
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redsrock
post May 26 2008, 02:31 AM
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Fine, whatever. I do happen to have respect for you, BSD, so I will stop, even if I really REALLY do not want to. To be honest, you coming along probably saved me from getting banned. I guess that's one thing I can thank you for...


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0rimus
post May 26 2008, 02:34 AM
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I wrote with no thought of reward. My 90+ hours of typing and reasearch. I read all the long stories in about an hour or two. I appreciate your time spent on reading all the stories, I really do. But why is it that no one seems to apprecite the time I spent on this, or the others for that matter? I know that I cut corners, I already said that, but still I worked hard too, and I also have a life to live as well. I really wish that I could turn this into a gunfight, making it personal. But, I'm not that kind of person. Not a five year old. I wish I could throw a tantrum, all my screams and curses so well founded and justified, I could go on for enternity. But I'll be mature, and state things solely on logic. A mispell is a mispell, did you catch where I put Groh' Cash instead of gro-Malog? If it pains you guys to read our stories, too much of a draw on your time, then I must ask why you do it. No ones paying you to judge? No ones paying me to write. Given; I had the constipulation of a reward, but it wasn't much in return for my efforts. You say there is no perfect system; I agree. But it could easily be made better. An e-mail. The simplest solution. E-mail us our placement, we had to send our stories in, so you have our e-mails. A PM would work, but then how are you to know who is who? Steven = Orimus. Maybe I entered with the wrong state of mind. I wrote to write, not to win things. If went the whole story spelling the as teh, it wouldn't matter so long as the judges could understand what I meant. The bridge between daedra and deadra is not so bad. And if I lost for that singular reason, or even all the ones Haplo mentioned, then I'm worried.

Whipped out the caps and the bold, eh?
"That my weak words have struck but thus much show of fire from Brutus."
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Burnt Sierra
post May 26 2008, 02:46 AM
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QUOTE(0rimus @ May 26 2008, 02:34 AM) *

The bridge between daedra and deadra is not so bad. And if I lost for that singular reason, or even all the ones Haplo mentioned, then I'm worried.


No offence, but that isn't the reason you didn't win. I already said that I didn't count spelling mistakes specifically. I was judging the entries against the other entries. In my opinion - and I can only speak for my results, not the other judges - the order I put the stories in reflects both how much I enjoyed reading them and how well I thought they expressed the ideas behind them. Simple as that. Believe me, I enjoyed reading all the stories, and they all had elements to recommend them, but I had to choose which ones spoke to me the most. Which characters were brought to life, which plot devices had me on the edge of my seat, which turn of phrase had me chuckling with pleasure. My results show my opinion, and my opinion only. That's why we had three judges for each section, to discover those stories that spoke to a majority of us.
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0rimus
post May 26 2008, 02:51 AM
Post #100


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QUOTE(BSD-IES @ May 25 2008, 06:46 PM) *

QUOTE(0rimus @ May 26 2008, 02:34 AM) *

The bridge between daedra and deadra is not so bad. And if I lost for that singular reason, or even all the ones Haplo mentioned, then I'm worried.


No offence, but that isn't the reason you didn't win. I already said that I didn't count spelling mistakes specifically. I was judging the entries against the other entries. In my opinion - and I can only speak for my results, not the other judges - the order I put the stories in reflects both how much I enjoyed reading them and how well I thought they expressed the ideas behind them. Simple as that. Believe me, I enjoyed reading all the stories, and they all had elements to recommend them, but I had to choose which ones spoke to me the most. Which characters were brought to life, which plot devices had me on the edge of my seat, which turn of phrase had me chuckling with pleasure. My results show my opinion, and my opinion only. That's why we had three judges for each section, to discover those stories that spoke to a majority of us.


Thank you. Now all I ask is this: What made you not enjoy my story as much? From the last short story competition there was a short explination for each one. Sure, there are alot more stories for this one, but that short paragraph of criticism is all I want. You shouldn't nessisarily give a review for every story, that'd be alot. But c'mon, I'm asking specifically, and nicely.
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