MUDSlinger Submission Guidelines
The Medievia MUDSlinger has evolved over time into the periodical we all
know and love. Written for the most part by you, the players, it rewards
those who provide entertainment for the masses with donation awards and
the coveted Golden Quill - more on this later.
Have you got a tale to tell? Can you entertain our readers? If you think
that you can, then read on and follow the current guidelines for
Before sending in a piece it is advisable to seek the advice of the
frontline editor of the MUDSlinger - that person can often tell you if an
article idea is viable. This can save you a lot of time and effort.
Currently you should contact Soleil at email@example.com with a
few lines, or more if necessary, that give some outlines of your tale and
the plot. You may be asked for more details.
What makes a good article? It must revolve around Medievia and after that,
it depends on the sort of article - fiction must be based on events and
zones in the game, factual must actually explain things to players and so
forth. Thinking about this and asking the frontline editor for opinions
first is a good idea as it can save both you and us time.
Submissions must be in TXT format or in the body of an e-mail. Do NOT send
.doc files, do not copy and paste from .doc files. Use 'save as text'
options instead and check the results for legibility please - Word can be
odd at times. Similarly, we do not want a submission in .html format.
Please just send plain text and we'll do the rest.
Do not use tabs to mark the beginnings of paragraphs. When denoting
paragraphs please insert a clear line between them and make sure you
remove all tabs before you send it. If an article is received in .doc
format, .html format or with tabs it will be returned with a note to
rectify this before we look at it.
A MUDSlinger submission must be all your own work. If you are 'medifying'-
or altering to a Medievian theme, an existing work then we need to know
about it. All submissions must be on a Medievian theme. If it has nothing
to do with Medievia, we don't want to see it. We have a world of
inspiration for you and you can use any part of it logically.
Acceptance and use of articles is at our own discretion. If you have tried
an article out on your clan members, your schoolmates or even read it out
to your dog, it doesn't matter how well received it was - the final
decision is ours. Any rejections are sent out by Soleil. If you haven't
heard from Soleil about your article for some time then feel free to follow
it up - she usually tries to have articles processed in four working days.
Articles can be rejected on the spot but this is rare and indicates that
Soleil cannot see any value in them or that they have insurmountable
problems - explanations are always given in such cases. Occasionally,
articles are accepted without any work. The vast majority have to be
worked on, however. This usually consists of an e-mail discussion with
points being raised and considerations on both sides being aired. There
is no guarantee of articles being accepted after this, but in order to
facilitate more articles of better quality appearing on the pages we have
introduced a new system on a trial basis.
If an article has been passed back and forth a number of times and is
still not up to the standard we require, then Soleil may offer a chance
at a rewrite of the piece by herself. This would involve her writing the
piece from scratch with reference to the original work, but with her own
ideas. There may be significant changes to the piece but if the submitter
accepts the rewritten article, it will go up - please note the new
qualifications on the paragraphs dealing with awards with regards to this.
You may request this from Soleil if you desire at any stage.
At some point an article will have gone back and forth so much that
Soleil will do this at her own discretion whether the submitter wants
it or not. She will only do this if she thinks that there is a story worth
telling there. This will not be a step taken lightly and will be a 'take
it or leave it' measure for if it is rejected then the article will be
rejected. You will be able to appeal to Soleil should this happen.
Check the current MUDSlinger on the website - there is a reasonably long
list of past articles to go over. Read them all and see what is common
about all those articles, ensuring that you are not going to be rehashing
someone else's work.
A good grasp of English, spelling and grammar is essential so it may be an
idea to ask someone else (a Medievian for preference) to check it over if
you are not certain. Avoid acronyms (eg. afk, lol, rofl etc) and try not
to base your language on current day slang - clear, standard English is a
great assistance in these matters. Short, choppy sentences are not easy on
the eye so try and link several together to make decent lines of text.
Similarly, don't overdo sentence length.
Apart from not using contemporary vernacular, please do not send any
submissions using the currently fashionable (lazy) word contraction - "u"
for "you" and so forth. A submission that contains any of this will
receive an automatic rejection. You have been warned.
Perhaps the best advice is to read the writer's guide on the webpage,
written by Excrucior. It is packed with helpful hints, examples and so
forth. Read it and use the information within.
Before sending your article in please try and check it over for errors.
Spellcheckers are good for this, as are friends. If you want to check it
yourself then do not do so immediately - leave the piece alone for a few
days and try not to even think about it. That way you can look at it with
a fresh mind that doesn't remember exactly how you wanted it to look when
you wrote it.
An article that is accepted will be published in due time on Medievia's
MUDSlinger online newspaper and an award may be made to the author. Most
articles will receive an award of up to 10 "DONATION TOKENS" at Soleil's
All published articles will earn their owner the much coveted Golden
MUDSlinger Quill. You will only be notified of any award by an e-mail from
Soleil at the point at which the article is published. We reserve the
right to rerun articles from the past at our discretion - this does not
gain the author any further award.
Verse articles, except for outstanding cases, are not awarded donation
equipment. We have a range of other gifts for these which are distributed
at Soleil's discretion. Rewritten articles may also be awarded these
instead of donation awards but this depends on the amount of rewriting
required. If you make the piece good and follow any advice Soleil
gives then you should be able to avoid this.
Any works accepted and published by the MUDSlinger become the property of
Michael A. Krause and Medievia.com, Inc.
MUDSlinger articles have evolved into three distinct varieties over time -
Fiction, Factual and Verse (songs or poetry). Some general guidelines for
each section follow here.
Specific types of articles:
We want articles that will be interesting to people. We will not accept
pieces that are just accounts of going to a zone, killing a few mobs, and
then getting out/killed/whatever. We don't want narrative accounts of a
playing session, we want proper stories. We want characterization, we
want personality, we want dialogue and interaction. Can you provide
interest for our readers?
We have an existing world and system and do not need to alter that to make
good stories. We allow some slight leeway from the established rules and
spells if it makes a justifiable point to the tale, but we decide just how
far you can go. Humorous tales are allowed more leeway, but it remains our
discretion as to how far you can go. We also do not want to have exact
directions for running zones within the storyline itself - we provide a
game for people to explore, we don't want to just give them the answers.
Try and write from the viewpoint of someone in the story - not as a
player. People in the game don't have Irish accents - they have Trellorian
accents or sound like they came from Derah; they claim to be excellent in
the arts of magic, not that they are a level 27 mage. Don't use player
terminology such as 'banking' or 'running' or 'mob' - use the language
that an actual character in a book would.
Fictional articles will often use other players' characters so either use
names that are not in the game or ask for permission. It's best to let
them see the work first so you know they are happy with their portrayal.
Occasionally this will not be necessary for established facts - example
mentioning the early days of Medievia will often mention when Vryce walked
the land - that's an established fact and doesn't need permission. If in
doubt, ask them or Soleil.
Generate a readable writing style for fiction - add in adjectives,
especially underused ones, to create some flavor to the piece. Use
Medievian landmarks to draw the reader into the story. Proper dialogue
between characters is good, although keep swearing out as per the game
rules (there are plenty of acceptable alternatives - Excrucior's favorite
in real life is "Hell's Teeth!"). Remember, also, that your proponent has
emotions and will be affected by the happenings around them.
Padding happens a lot in order to extend a piece. If you need to resort to
non-plot aspects to lengthen a submission - don't. It's usually pretty
obvious and you'll be told about it.
We have published serials in the past and we had to put into place rules
to prevent people from abusing the system. Previously the rules stated
that the piece had to be in three parts maximum and all parts must be
submitted at once. After discussing this with players we are quite happy
to allow people to submit a serial with as many parts as they wish so as
not to restrict creativity. We still do require that all parts are
submitted at once, however, as we have had many series fade out after an
episode or two. All parts of a series will be judged as one article for
the purposes of donation awards.
Do you have problems with finding inspiration? Just try looking around
the game - every builder has tried to tell a story and every mob can be
treated as an individual - just try and work out logical progressions from
what you can see based on observed desires and needs.
Factual articles need to be just that - factual. Keep to your subject and
make sure your facts are correct. Player terminology is acceptable but try
and use the full version (eg "Trade Run" instead of TR so that people
unfamiliar with Medievia can read it as well. Information on exactly how
to run an equipment zone will generally be rejected whereas there have
been some decent articles on how to run zones in general terms that can
apply to any and all zones.
We have had various factual articles that degenerated into anecdotes -
this counts as padding (see above). Please stay on your topic and do not
add in unrelated elements.
After the polls we ran we discovered that the reading public considered
the verse (song/poetry) articles to be their least favorite. We have
discussed this and will be keeping them in as an article type, but we are
enforcing some restrictions.
Many verse articles have been adjudged to be too short to deserve an
award. We have decided to make this general policy - only the exceptional
verse based articles will be awarded an award of a type determined by
Soleil at the time (not necessarily donation equipment). The MUDSlinger
Quill will still be awarded for published verse - a fine incentive for the
We need a decent length of verse to make it worth our while printing a
piece. We discussed this and we believe that anything under forty lines of
reasonable length would not be worth printing. We'd prefer many more -
over sixty - but not many more of padding. If you specialise in sonnets
(14 lines) then try and create several for a single piece.
Free verse has been discussed and decided on as unacceptable. It would be
too easy to put anything down on a TXT file and call it free verse. If you
cannot make something rhyme or scan then you are not showing the level of
skill or discipline we believe necessary. Rhyming couplets are another
form we dislike as they also show little ambition in format. It is true
that many contemporary songwriters use rhyming couplets in their
productions, but it is also true that Excrucior considers many contemporary
songwriters to be talentless oiks beneath his contempt.
As always, if in doubt please feel free to contact the current frontline
editor with any questions you have.