[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
The only thing that is making it OK for me to be saying goodbye to 2 of these people is that I can point them to the Second Chance sign-up sheet and hope they will take my advice.

For the moment though, we are saying goodbye to

[livejournal.com profile] aniron_iorhael and [livejournal.com profile] bunnika

Thank you so much for coming out this season. I've really loved reading your entries, and seriously, get yourselves over to Second Chance right now...

I don't want this to be "goodbye".
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
A few words from [livejournal.com profile] clauderainsrm:


My favorite part of a Write-Off is that it is a spotlight on folks who may have fallen off the radar. There’s no “I didn’t have time to read everyone”. In this case, there are literally three short entries, if you don’t have the time to read them, you probably didn’t have the time to click on the link to see this post! ;)

My least favorite part? That we will be saying goodbye to some of them.

In this particular case, there are three contestants, and only one spot left in the competition for them. Which means two of them need to go… fortunately, the sign-ups for Second Chance have started, so I hope we will see them there. I’ll admit it, I *personally* really hope that we will see them there, because these are three folks I’ve been enjoying reading this season and knowing that two of them are going is only cushioned by that hope.

Who that person is, who will be moving forward, is entirely in YOUR hands. So read the entries and vote for your favorites!

The poll closes Saturday, Feb 18th at 10pm EST

Good luck to everyone!




[Poll #2063161]
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
It just goes to show that the old adage of "go with your first instinct" is often right. Originally, I had planned on eliminating 6 contestants this week, but at last minute, changed it to 5! If there had been 6, this would be straight forward. As is, there is a tie that will have to be solved.

Before we get to that though, there is the matter of the people leaving us this week. Everyone on this list - and in the tie - is someone that I have been enjoying this season. We're kind of getting to that point where it will always be true.

Goodbye to

[livejournal.com profile] dreamwriters
[livejournal.com profile] estelle
[livejournal.com profile] fannishliss

When I say that I hope you guys come back for Second Chances, that is starting "really soon", I *MEAN* "really soon". So hopefully I won't have to wait to read more of your stuff.

as for the others, there are 3 contestants in the tie, and only 1 spot left in the game for them.

[livejournal.com profile] aniron_iorhael
[livejournal.com profile] bunnika
[livejournal.com profile] quiltingdragon

The tie-breaker is another 24-hour "Open Topic", which means you can write anything you want. Bring it! You are writing for your life! I will post a thread below, that is only for the tie-breaker contestants. You have until Friday, Feb 17th at 10pm EST to link your entries.

There will be a thread below.
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
I'm back! Rested and married... well, not all that rested. But I am back! And married.

To celebrate, I will be eliminating people tonight!http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/979718.html

Make sure it's not you, or one of your favorites! Get the word out! Share the Idol love!

***

How have YOU been? Did anyone do anything special for Valentines Day?
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
It's today!!!! :)

[livejournal.com profile] kithan said she would stop in tomorrow. So hopefully she gets this ping.


Here's your link for the poll: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/979718.html

Now excuse me, I'm getting married today!!!!!!
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
This morning I woke up with one of those weird thoughts of "If LJ ever went away/if we decided to move Idol somewhere else, I could keep the name and just make the LJ stand for something other than 'Live Journal'!"

My favorite, in this daze was Literary Jihad! :)

So I went to see if this was a thing - and it kind of is... http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/06/08/battle-lines-jihad-creswell-and-haykel

Jihadists LOVE poetry. Who else do we know who seems to love poetry? Seaaon 10 LJ Idol contestants... Coincidence????

***

See for yourself what "those people" are up to (and by "those people" I mean "current contestants" and by "current contestants" I mean hippies in the need of a good kicking. http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/979718.html


***

One more day. One day more!
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
Before I get to anything else, I missed a special birthday yesterday and wanted to make sure I mentioned it - Happy Birthday to our own [livejournal.com profile] yamyam_kat! I hope it was a good one/ *kicks you for being a mini-hippie because that would be the "treating everyone equally regardless of age thing to do*. ;)

***

The poll is up: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/979718.html

So make sure to get over there and give your favorite entries some love! That's what Valentines Day is all about right? Giving some love? Or massacring a bunch of people. Maybe expressing your love by shooting random people through the heart with arrows. I'm not sure exactly what it's about, but I'm sure I'm going to get it sooner or later...

The point being to make sure to support the folks you want to see more of, and of course, tell folks who *aren't* currently in Idol to check it out as well. This only works as well as people can spread the word. Otherwise it becomes a weird echo chamber - and that's not any fun for anyone. So get the word out! *Especially* get the word out because when I come back from "wedding stuff", they might have a chance to do something about not being in Idol. Or should I say, they might have another chance to do something about that. So definitely start putting that out there...

Which kind of dovetails into my other thought (I only have one at a time) about how when we have huge seasons, I always hear "there are TOO MANY people to read!" and this season was really small compared to Season 9 (which was mega-hyped, whereas this was a lot more low-key, so that makes sense) and I keep hearing about low numbers *while at the same time* hearing that it's still too many people to read. ;) It's funny how that works. No big "nature of humanity" conclusion. It just amuses me. (and is the type of thing that might get some folks fired up... One thing I will say about this season, so far, is the total lack of drama. (at least on *my* radar.) Which I also think puts it in the "low key" category. That said, this thing is far from over - and there's always *someone* who gets annoyed at SCI, so we might not be out of the woods yet on that... there are advantages and disadvantages to the pot being stirred. I'm glad that's it's not happening *right now*, because I have other stuff going on. :) But it does have me looking over my shoulder wondering who is going to be the first one to break! Will it be YOU???? *cue dramatic music*.
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
A few words from [livejournal.com profile] clauderainsrm:


After a couple weeks with very little in the way of “extra loss” due to bye-outs, unfortunately we have 4 this week. All 4 of them are (again) veterans. I’m really sensing as theme here… vets, I’d start watching your backs in “Real Life”. Apparently, the newbies are coming after you there as well!

I’m hoping they can come back for their revenger in the ranks of Second Chance…

For now though, goodbye to

[livejournal.com profile] emo_snal
[livejournal.com profile] n3m3sis43
[livejournal.com profile] porn_this_way
[livejournal.com profile] spydielives

That last one is really lam… nope, not going to trick me into saying it again! ;)

Lamb. It’s really lamb!

As for the rest of you - because of “certain events” happening next week, this poll is going to be up a little longer. Which, of course, means that it will come at a higher price.

We will be losing the 5 contestants with the fewest votes from Tribe 1.

With the bye-outs, we’ve now officially dipped down below the Top 100. Congratulations, you’ve made it! Now that goal is getting to the Top 75 in one piece. Good luck with that!

The poll closes Thursday, Feb 16th at 9pm EST

Good luck to everyone!




Click here to Vote! )
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
It's deadline day! http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/977744.html We're still missing *a lot* of entries. Don't make me turn this car around...

***

I have some things on my mind. But you already know what they are! :)

What's going on with *you* today/this upcoming weekend?
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
Remember that time when your favorite singer-songwriter wrote a song about your upcoming wedding? Yeah, me too.

Good times. I assume this is just something that happens, right? ;)

https://soundcloud.com/garydreslinski/prayer-tree

***

What is something that has "just happened" to you? Other than me kicking you. Which is about to happen. Better brace yourself.

Because the deadline is tomorrow and the topic thread needs a LOT more love: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/977744.html Mass elimination *is not* what I asked for as a wedding present. So let's not do that, OK? ;)

If you still need some help, pop into the Work Room: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/978031.html
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
What is your favorite genre to write?

To read?

Are those different, and if so, any insight into why?

***

Throwing stuff out here people... hoping someone bites on *something*...

Um...

Trump

Lady Gaga's belly
*looks at trending topics*

Iron Fist trailer

Walking Dead is coming back...

***

The new topic is up: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/977744.html
and there's a Work Room http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/978031.html
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
"I can't get to sleep
I think about the implications
Of diving in too deep
And possibly the complications

Especially at night
I worry over situations
I know we'll be alright
Perhaps it's just imagination"

Or in my case (well, our case) wedding details.

When we first set this thing up - in those forgot days of yore (what? a week ago? Week and a half? something like that) we were just going to show up, get married, and then go get dinner.

Then people wanted to come... and we thought "we should have a cake".

In the process of getting a cake, the woman in charge of catering started getting in our heads that "people might expect food". Which is something we didn't think about - because they are going to a movie where we just happen to be getting married... and so the discussions into the night, with neither of us able to fall asleep.

Only one week to go...

***

What is keeping YOU up at night? Is it the new topic? http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/977744.html If so, you should get some help in the Work Room! http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/978031.html
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
I think I mentioned how I band I really like broke up, and the lead singer came out with some vague statements about his past behavior and how damaging it had been. Maybe I did, maybe I didn't. But it happened.

People in that thread, of course, starting spelling out some of what he was talking about (more of them had theories than actual "this happened...") but all of them had the same reaction: "I'm done with this band/their music!"

Which, I was pretty pissed off at the singer and what he had done (or the vague idea of what he had done at any rate) but find myself in that position where I still have those songs in my head. Despite people saying that they can just turn off their love of that music, I wonder if maybe it's more like a relationship that ended poorly. You catch yourself thinking of them all the time, even though you know that it's really bad for you, and the only thing that really gets you through it is the passage of time.

***

Speaking of the Passage of Time - we had eliminations last night: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/977621.html

a new topic: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/977744.html

and a Work Room: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/978031.html

I've also contacted 84 Lumber to build a wall around Idol so no one can escape. They seem to have done a good job, I haven't watched the *whole* commercial yet, but I imagine it ends up people in tears, unable to leave.

***

What was YOUR favorite Super Bowl commercial? (other than the one announcing the new season of Stranger Things)
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
It's almost like people knew that this topic was coming and have been preparing in the Green Room! ;)

What it is?

No comment

Link your entries to this thread by Friday, Feb 10th at 9pm EST
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
No Mentor this week.

But the new topic is up: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/977744.html

So this is definitely the space to talk about that, and perhaps hash some stuff out.

***

As I was about to post this, I encountered an article that made me think of a quite a few writers I've known over the years, and their struggles: https://writingcooperative.com/writing-through-depression-6042ed15e946#.huqqld43f

I was also saw something about "tips for writers". But the only one that I really thought was worth sharing (that wasn't completely cliched) was to KEEP PUSHING YOURSELF. Not just against the forces that make you want to not keep moving forward (see above) but also to be better, to take that limit of what you *think* you can do, and keep pushing at that wall until it breaks.

How are you going to push yourself this week?
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
Last week was brutal, and this week continues that trend, with some unexpected results.

Close votes and unexpected results - that's what Friends and Rivals is made of!

In this case, 1 vote separated staying and going, and about .75 between the teams! That's damn close.

We are losing:

Team Late to the Party's [livejournal.com profile] idekmybffjill
and
Team Norbert's [livejournal.com profile] ellakite

From the Rivals, it was

[livejournal.com profile] leni_ba

and a tie between [livejournal.com profile] aresrising05 and [livejournal.com profile] tijuanagringo which will send them into a Tie-Breaker head-to-head Death Match next week!

There will be another chance to get into the competition coming up relatively soon, so I hope everyone sticks around and plays the Home Game until that window opens up - and then goes full speed into the fray to fight for their second chance!
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
I was going to talk about Gloria Steineim, but instead I'm going to talk about Michael Skupin.

Because the changes to feminism over the years and how those generations are clashing is an interesting subject, but not one where I really have any true background as anything other than an outsider in that particular fight.

Mike Skupin though - that's Survivor related. That hits where I live.

If you don't know who Mike Skupin is off the top of your head, but you have *any* idea what the US version of the television show Survivor is, you know him as the guy from the second season (Australian Outback) as "that guy who fell in the fire".

The pictures of the skin coming off his hands was pretty iconic, as was the story of how they healed. He used his story as a platform for his Christian faith and at one point his home state of Michigan was considering him as a candidate to run for state office as a Republican.

He eventually came back for a season (Philippines).

A year or so ago, there were allegations that his "Pay It Forward" investment group was a Ponzi scheme. When confronted by a reporter he uttered the phrase "Do your research", which I took and made into a popular meme within the Survivor fan community. You're welcome Survivor fan community.

The report happened and then we really didn't hear anything else about it - until Friday.

On Friday he was arrested and not only charged with the Ponzi scheme, but with 6 counts of possession of child pornography.

That last bit was a shock that is still rippling through the fan community.

It seems to have polarized people into two camps: the "of course he did it" and the "let the legal process play out". (Well, OK, there are also the "he's innocent!" folks, but I'm trying to ignore them for the moment. :)

You could plug in any popular/semi-popular figure who has ever been arrested into this scenario. There are going to be people who believe everything, those who believe nothing is true and those in the middle waiting for more information. (Information that they may never actually have, given the nature of court cases)

There is, of course, the "always believe the victim". But I think there are dangers in that as well. Maybe it should be "the tie goes to the runner" situation. Of course, I'm sure there are some who would say that isn't supportive enough. (and honestly, for me, it's about what the situation actually is - and the nature of the crime)

In this particular case, I'm not 100% sure that Skupin is guilty of running a Ponzi scheme. There's a lot of technical boxes that need to be checked in order to meet that definition. Does he cross them all? Not enough information has come out to make me think he definitely has, although enough has been raised that I think it's likely.

The possession of child porn? Yeah, that happened. Why? Because no one was trying to "get him" on that charge. The seized his computers to look for something to help convict him of the Ponzi charges. The child porn was as much of a surprise to them as it was the general fan base.

I've seen people who are saying the police "planted those images" on his computer. But that goes against Occam. Why create such an outlandish, and explosive, charge out of thin air? It doesn't make him any more likely to be convicted of running a Ponzi scheme... it just adds more, and completely unrelated, charges.

I know that's not going to stop people from saying "he's innocent!!" any more than it's going to stop people from automatically jumping to "they are guilty!: the next time there is someone else in the news.

But I think that stepping back and looking at these things helps - as does realizing there is a chance that whatever you end up coming up with could be wrong. (But not too much, otherwise you become someone without any strong opinions - and who wants to live in that world?)

***

Not sure I've really said anything other than informed people that Mike Skupin is a pervert... so I'll actually say something useful:

The deadline to get your votes in is TONIGHT!
http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/891400.html

That's something where you should have some strong feelings - so let's hear them!!
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
A few words from [livejournal.com profile] clauderainsrm:


LJ said that it was going down. But the quality of LJ Idol certainly isn’t!

I wonder how people are going to make their decision this week. I’m just glad that I don’t have to make the decision.

One person who will not be making the journey with us is [livejournal.com profile] bookishgeek, who had to drop this week. She will definitely be missed!

As for the rest of the contestants - we will be losing 2 people in the Friends (from the teams with the fewest average votes) .

We will also be losing 2 from the Rivals!

So make sure to get out there and support the entries you love - and tell people about them! It’s entirely up to you who will go forward, and who will not!

Read. Comment, and vote for your favorites!

The poll closes Monday, Feb 8th at 9pm EST.

Good luck to everyone!


Click here to Vote! )
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
Today is the deadline: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/889807.html so remember to get your entries in!

Roosh V will be using the Green Room as a meeting place now that his other options have fallen through, so if you have something to say to him definitely show up and speak your mind!

(*Note: He may not actually show up. I've heard that he may have overslept down in the basement at his Mom's house... but feel free to get started without him!*)
[identity profile] clauderainsrm.livejournal.com
There comes a time when I must use my massive power and influence for personal gain.

In this case - the gain is "I might be able to get a hug".

Not from you. No one wants a hug from a dirty foreign hippie.

But I'm thinking that if people buy Girl Scout cookies from Celena, she might be so happy and excited that she could momentarily break free from her 12-year old restraints and give me some of that "affection" that you people are always going on about.

You love Girl Scout cookies and are constantly wanting to annoy me with your unwashed affections... I have a way of you getting those cookies delivered to your doorstep, and allowing me to receive that "hug" thing from someone I actually care about! (as opposed to you, who I just want to torture!)

https://digitalcookie.girlscouts.org/scout/celena7069 is the link.

If you don't want cookies, but want to send them to the military and/or veterans groups (perhaps as a plot to stop all wars by distracting them with cookies), there's an option for that as well. Just follow the link.

If you don't want cookies - and have no interest in any of this, scroll past this part.

Buy. Don't buy. Either way you will feel my wrath! There's no escaping that part. I'm just blatantly misusing my power over a captive audience! :D

***

Now that we've gotten that bit out of the way, there is also some business:

The topic post: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/889807.html
The Home Game: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/890493.html
The Work Room: http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/890041.html

The statement I make to get people talking in the Green Room:

How do you decide what to vote for every week?
What is that line between "Yeah, I'll click the box" and "I don't think I will"...

Not just "it appealed to me" or "didn't appeal to me". I'm looking for specifics!

What is it that you are looking for in an entry, and what is something that someone could do to push them over that line (in either direction) in their own work?

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