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Quote by Violet_the_Verbose

Hi Kimmi, I'm here and getting to the end game now. Will probably get it in Friday night lol.

Lol, 'Violet has just published a story,' flashed onto my screen. Two and a half hours left, plenty of time. Well done, Violet, though I will have to read later in the weekend.

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Evening all, I am delighted to have actually got back into the groove of competition stories; and to think I was told that new mums can't find the time to write. Well it is actually so true, discipline when I am writing is key. Lol and I am late with my submission here, mind you being good friends with Violet does assure me of knowing I wont be last. Of course my story has to get approved, but, if it is, do check it out if you have a minute.

Hot and humid here, a very wet warm summer, but fortunately no bushfires as a result. Did you know I have hardly ever seen snow and never in Sydney? And some of my online friends have snow blowers.

Quote by Mendalla
It's a quieter, less raucous hangout for us more refined writersπŸ˜‰.

Lol, don't tempt me, I can do raucous, which by the way is a fabulous word, must find more uses for it. Oh and how does one become a refined writer; just asking for a friend.πŸ˜‡

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Quote by Violet_the_Verbose

I have no ragrets 😎

The competition anti-thesis; now if only I could write as well as Edith can sing.

Quote by Mendalla

Congrats, Writergirl on being first in!! Still trying to figure out what the hell to write myself. None of the ideas that are perpetually kicking around in my head are a fit for this one.

Writergirl's story is fabulous. I have a story that has been kicking around in my mind for a while and 1000 words written that might just fit the bill. Now to find the time to redraft those words and add a lot more.

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Quote by Ping

Well, how did that happen?

Like I said before, there is something about this genre that brings out a special creativity in people. I guess we all have our spooky passions.

Thanks to Molly, the judges, and all the others behind the scenes. And thanks to all that entered and read our stories.

Comps are fun!!!

It happened because you wrote a damn fine story, my friend.

Congratulations to Ping, Violet (yay VV) and WriterGirl for your outstandingly tales. And to everyone else who entered.

I echo Ping: thanks to Molly and all those involved in organising and judging this competition.

And indeed competitions are so much fun!!

I am a little sad to report that, though I managed to enter this one, I didn't elsewhere. My competition streak of over 20 consecutive competitions has come to an end. But I have the best ever excuse.

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States I have lived in: New South Wales (only lived outside NSW for one year, in London which isn't a state.)

States visited:




South Australia

And two territories:

Australian Capital Territory

Northern Territory

Oh I know I know, you really want USA states; well I've visited:



New Mexico





(and Seattle airport, which may not really count.)

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Quote by Mendalla

Not just any ghost story, but a Christmas ghost story. I love this genre, stories told by the fire on a winter's night making you shiver from more than just the drafty windows. Might give it a whirl myself

But if its Christmas why would there be a winter's fire? Christmas is all about heat and humidity, July is the time for winter ghost stories πŸ˜‡

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I should mention my entry, Tales From the Crypt: Downunder Edition which, while not quite as late as Violet's was a close run thing. Some of you may know my friend Hannah (Palindromeredux) who sadly has not been online for six months. She is the cleverest comic writer, her stories redolent of cultural icons and especially horror movies. I usually try a couple of different things in competition stories. This time it was (a la Hannah) the integration of movie references into a story line in a seamless way and capturing the chaotic stream of consciousness of a dream. I have loved the stories I have read so far, (I have three or four to go.) Fabulous writing all round

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Evening all, warm here, the first hint of humidity in the air; I think we can safely say it is summer.

I imagine you will find this odd, but today was Melbourne Cup day. Yes a horse race and that meant no work was done after lunch in Australia, and most had their annual flutter on the ponies. Even more remarkably, in the state of Victoria (where Melbourne is) it was a public holiday.

Himself decided to celebrate his first Halloween by sleeping through the night for the first time. It was a tease of course, he so didn't bother to do it again the next night. I am beginning to understand what it means by: 'the days are long and the weeks short.'

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Quote by Violet_the_Verbose

Hey you! 

Nice of you to hop on in here. Nice first story, by the way. Everyone should give it a read when they have the chance. It really captures that lock down feeling with nature. Hope to see you out and about. 🐰

*coughs* I prefer zucchini.

True Violet, welcome 🐰

You so don't want to start the zucchini versus courgette debate again, do you, Violet. After all it might degenerate like last time into an aubergine versus eggplant discussion. 

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Root canal ... I dream of root canal. πŸ˜• Not really, just that lets just say I needed a blood transfusion after an emergency C-section Tuesday night. All is good now; baby got stuck and is well despite that, mother is improving πŸ‘Œ 

I am having trouble publishing a poem about late babies (or more accurately one late young man in particular) which I wrote Saturday. Cant work out if it is a bug or that I am stupid... Okay, don't answer that. 

But for all the mums out there I do have a question: How come second children are born? 

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I love the look of the stories ; the pic and the strong blue title followed by the black one liner. And I think I will never again do which I always did which is add the story title into the picture. Less design work which I always left to last, suddenly I am a big fan. 

I also adore the look of the forum signature block, clearly shows what I want it to show which is my latest stories. 

So agree with Ping, this is moving in a wonderful direction.

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I know this is trivial, but is the timestamp set to the US? Some posts that happened earlier today (Australian time) have gone to yesterday in my feed. Not that the forum timestamp was particularly accurate before, it seemed like it reflected New Zealand time back to me. 

I do like the My Comments format and that it does give me easy access (as on the old site) to comments on my stories or forum posts. And it is easier to use than the previous version. The one thing that this version doesn't do is notify me when someone responds to my comment on their story. Is that part of the 'to-do' list?

I received a nice email to view Violet's album of sugary sweet cat pics. That works really well, and I do like that Violet can and did add a time dimension to it. I know there will be bugs to fix (Messenger for instance can behave a little oddly at times,) which take priority, but for me it is Friends Activity and BB’s that I am missing most from the old version. Lots of improvements, well done to all who have been part of this.   

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Do you know what is the most frustrating thing ever? 

No it isn't changes in our beloved site, not even close. In truth I love the new presentation and the forums. Though messenger is not quite BB. 

The most frustrating thing ever is, waiting and waiting and still more waiting. Almost Friday, four days past the time for that which was due on Monday to arrive ... 

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Quote by Violet_the_Verbose

The forum watch thing seems fixed which is awesome.

The notification bell only allows me to clear notifications 10 at a time currently. I was starting close to 200 notifications from all the forum stuff from before that got fixed so it's gonna take some time to clear all.

There's also an automated message I've gotten from friends on here. I'm only bringing it up because I've gotten it twice. Not sure how it got sent, but it's the following:

Subject: I'd like to know more...
Body: Oh hey there!
I've been checking out your profile and I like what I've seen, why don't you take a look at mine to see if we click?
Hope to hear from you soon. πŸ˜‰

I know I'm a hot ticket item and all, but I get the feeling this is a holdover from a dating site lol.

Edit: Sometimes clicking on 'Clear All' and the individual 'X's doesn't do anything. Not sure why sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't.

Hey, one of those was from me, Violet...

And while I am not sure what button I pressed, I do like what I have seen smile  You know you really are a hot item, giggles, and rushing off, something else on my mind :) 

Thanks Baronvonmonty for removing this, I am teasing Violet. :) 

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Quote by Violet_the_Verbose
Quote by Baronvonmonty

Other edit: Apparently there is more than black, (and each gender option has its own color associated including puke-yellow for non-binary?) The part in parenthesis is wrong, that's just on certain mobile devices... and the non man, woman, cis ones are black or puke yellow. Doesn't negate what I said above and in other posts. Color and gender really shouldn't be so intertwined. Leaving all the choices to the users is the best option, in my opinion. 

The vast majority of users want an easy way to see if they are speaking to a man or a woman etc. I can't tell you just how many complaints we get from people saying they are only interested in being contacted by women, or men etc, this is a simple way before them wasting a click on a profile to know if it's a man or a woman. So for any kind of filters or searches to work for this majority of people we need to establish sex. Also we have had issues in the past with people believing they have been chatting to (or meeting people) of a certain sex that have been disingenuous with their online profiles. Pick your own colour would not work unless it was accepted by all genderless people and users across the site otherwise they would not know what it was for. Personally I don't care if people want to identify as an Alien, Toaster, or a Werewolf, as long as they are happy. But right now we don't have anything on the site that will allow one Toaster to search for another. Im not saying that in the future we won't incorporate a special feature set for those who identify as Toasters or Werewolf's etc to find each other, but until then it's a case of using the options available.  There are already so many options on here for sex and gender that "99.9%" of people will be able to express themselves with no problem at all. And for everything else I would suggest personalising your profile and profile text. 

Like I said, I understand this is a very low-priority item on the to-do list. I also understand changing these things are probably harder and more time-consuming than they look from a coding perspective. However, some of the responses have come off as more than a little blasΓ© as to why this can be such an impassioned issue.

I don't see why it's necessary to search for users based on gender. It feels like it is missing the point. Although the dropdown box is a good first step that was started on the other site only after discussion, you have no idea how validating and how safe and encouraging it would look for it to all be fill-in-the-blank and not be something one needs to choose to join. And if people want to put in something silly like 'toaster', then so be it. Humor is a great coping mechanism, and I'm a strong advocate for people getting creative with how they choose to label themselves.

When I first joined the other site (before I figured out how to stop chat requests from non-friends), I got spammed with requests from users because my profile said 'female'. If this is the same majority wanting an easy way to know, they can put in a little more effort to get to know who they are talking to and accept that gender isn't part of the other user's personality. They can go read the user's profile and if there is no gender, then it isn't their business to pry.

Blocking people based on gender is something that could be avoided if users could fill in the blank. I think many self-identified cis women would also appreciate being able to not state their gender or have it hardcoded in pink due to the above. I'm sure many cis women also don't want to go out of their way to identify as non-binary, agender, bigender, gender fluid, gender questioning, two spirit, or transgender person(I'm sorry, trans woman, trans man, trans femme, and trans masc aren't even an option here?). There are so many gender identities I don't see on that list, and as individual's understanding of gender and sexuality (as I assume that will be on the other site as well) are always changing, having a set-up that allows that change and exploration would be greatly appreciated.

Intersex people are completely left out of this as well, which is disconcerting.

I found a link if you wanted to read more about gender identity, sex, and gender presentation.

Using 'toaster' and 'werewolf' as an argument parallels a bit too much with the 'I identify as an attack helicopter' argument online that is often used to invalidate trans and non-binary folk.

Both sites should be a safe space for the majority straight cis users and queer users (cis or otherwise) in equal measures.

Just because those who may want to use this feature might not be in the majority, doesn't mean there's no reason to eventually take these steps to make the sites more inclusive. Actually, it would look good for the sites to get with the times and not only cater to the current majority straight cis-male demographic. It's not like these changes will impair the majority's experiences or features of the sites.

Yes, I'm absolutely pleased Stories Space has been saved and grateful for all the hard work. I won't lie, most of these concerns are for the other site which I pay for, and I like to think I'm supporting a site that is open, inclusive, and working towards bettering itself.

I'm less of a fan of having to choose one from a set in a drop-down box for all the reasons stated in previous posts.

In the future, those users who complain about not being able to tell the gender of who they are talking to (as if everyone is honest about this) can respectfully look at how people choose to identify on their profile if that's something they choose to share. Maybe it will encourage more users to read profiles before spamming them with creepy chat and friend requests.

On that note, photo validation is not a good way to tell gender either. And it won't stop catfishers.

I'll continue to emphasize the importance of this being something users choose to fill in to their own liking.

It is a writing site, not a dating site as Maggie has said. Unless you all want to date me at once. Although, my time slots for dinner and wine are a little full at the moment, custard creams are guaranteed to be served for dessert. ;)

As for the other site, it's also a story site first. Stories are the backbone, and I'd hate for this to discourage new writers with new perspectives.

Anna, I know it may seem extreme some of us get so angry over this, but I've tried to be patient, quiet, and polite for months. Posting then waiting then posting then waiting. I never got a response from a higher up (I'm not talking about mods). Then when I do finally get a response, well, it was only after being more blatant about my true feelings on the matter and being 'Loud' seems to have been the only way to elicit anything.

I hope this eventually changes.

There is a dichotomy in how sites like this are used. Well more accurately there is a dichotomy in how the other site is used. 

This is a site built around writing and one that allows older teenagers to be members. My own view is that we have a responsibility to be open and inclusive. If one non-binary person finds this a safe space to write, then that is worth all our effort to deemphasize gender. I will argue this on the other site too, but for now this is all about here. 

There are so many gender identities and for some their understanding of gender and sexuality is always changing, having a set-up that doesn't imprison our young writers in a binary world is well worth out time and attention. Yes second order to other issues but, because it is incredibly important to a minority, worthy of our attention. 

Anna, I totally support Violet in this, as it is the right thing to do. My gender and sexuality, I hope, don't affect how you see me as a writer. And we have in these changes accentuated rather than de-emphasised gender. I republished Oxford Street here, it was a cri de coeur for the 'mode' or the most common not to be our frame of reference. Let that flow though to how we present ourselves to the next generation of writers. 

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Quote by gypsy
Quote by CuriousAnnie

Two things that happened unexpected for me in the transition were the images in my hidden gallery ending up in my public gallery, not a drama here but would be elsewhere. Though I think I will likely save all my elsewhere pics to my hard drive for that transition. 

And secondly I have both published and unpublished writing stored on My Stories on both sites. I seem to have lost the unpublished in the transition. Only two, one of which doesn't matter, but the other a poem was my only copy.  Again I will save these unpublished things before transition elsewhere. 


Hi Annie, if you look at the list of your stories, you should see, at the right side, a button marked Unpublished. Normally, your saved drafts are there. I just checked on my own stories list and my drafts are found there. 

I checked your profile and all your Media is in a private album, that issue was solved the other day, unless in your case it hasn't worked!
Hope this helps. 

Oh thanks you are right, my poem that I thought had been lost is in fact there. Thanks so much, my bad for not being observant. 

Yes, I moved my media to the private album subsequent to the change over. Not that it mattered to me that those particular pics were public, it was more a nervousness that this get fixed for the next change over. I am thrilled that it has been.  

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Overall I love the look and feel of the story presentations, it is crisp and clean and commenting is a breeze. My comments on comments on my stories have returned which is great. Except for the ones I made after this went live which have now disappeared. The forums look great and its easy to see and access the most recent. I adore the signature block now. 

There are some things from the past that I have used a lot and aren't yet part of this version. They may not be mission critical, but are things I would like to see included both here and (maybe more so) on the other site. 

When opening up either site, the first thing I look for is what BB messages I have received (and usually answer immediately) and what new stories have been published. At the moment here I see six new stories and an empty IM box. Though I am one click away from the first of 726 pages which lists the latest 15 stories.  The BB function has been important to me for the reasons Violet has explained, particularly as my friends' time zones mean they are often most active when I am asleep or working, so I won't labour that point. 

The next thing I do is look at my timeline to see new comments on my stories and posts on my page. And then I click the friends activity button to see what they have been up to. Seeing what stories my friends have read is a major driver of my short term reading list. The I read PM's and decide what to do next 😊 

So some of that I can do, and some I am not sure I can do, at least not yet. Other things I value. Being able to green-box certain friends. I am often online invisibly, reading and commenting on stories but I do like being able to be disturbed by a select handful. Also, ordering my friends so that those I interact with most are near the top of my friend list. Not a drama here, but will be on the other site. And last, being able to select who sees my pics, I mean at an individual friend level. 

I always load and save stories before submitting. Gives me a chance to read through the story in the format it will appear online and do a final edit. And also if I am honest because system stability has meant I have lost things and have had to start again with the submission process. 

I do like being able to order my stories on the profile page, so a some of what I see as my best stories are immediately visible to someone looking at my profile. 

Two things that happened unexpected for me in the transition were the images in my hidden gallery ending up in my public gallery, not a drama here but would be elsewhere. Though I think I will likely save all my elsewhere pics to my hard drive for that transition. 

And secondly I have both published and unpublished writing stored on My Stories on both sites. I seem to have lost the unpublished in the transition. Only two, one of which doesn't matter, but the other a poem was my only copy.  Again I will save these unpublished things before transition elsewhere. 

Personally I am not too worried if everyone knows when I was last on or that I live in Sydney (Australia and not Canada,) but I know users who will be very concerned about this on the other site. Some have the information they share at very low levels, even with friends and will be looking for that to continue. There will be others who also use the chat rooms a lot who will have views on them, not places I nowadays go to.

Well done, this is a major transition and looks really good so far. 



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Afternoon all, warmish today, low 20's C; really feeling that winter is behind us. This is a favourite time of year for me, I love the spring flowers and gardens are blooming, azaleas the most common in Sydney. 

Having escaped the worst of Covid, lockdown is now tightening in response to a Delta outbreak. So more time at home, which suits me at the moment. Hope you all have a good Friday, I will take some tea I think.

I like the look of the site, open and fresh, reading and commenting on stories seems easier. I am glad I have seen this change, there are a couple of things I need to do on the red site before change over. And a couple of things like BB messaging, and being instantly aware of which friends are online that I need to get used to. 

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Am I right in thinking that stories that are saved (and not published yet) in the My Stories list on the old site have disappeared. I had two here that I can't now find. Is there an easy way of seeing if your friends are online at the minute? I do like the presentation and look of the stories, still navigating my way around.   

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I see that messages are automatically moved to be deleted after 2 months. I am so in trouble on Lush if not here, I so rarely delete things and do need some of my older messages, I must do some house keeping there. Have all the pics automatically gone into the public file? I cant remember what was and wasn't public here, but I do have some in my private files on Lush that I would appreciate keeping private.  

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Congratulations to all who entered this wonderful competition, there were wonderful stories both in and out of the top ten. The top ten were a tribute to our craft, just brilliant stories from authors I adore.

Special congratulations to Verbal, Tam and TheShyThespian for their wonderful stories and well deserved podium finishes.

And to Violet too

As always thanks to those who organised and judged this competition especially Molly, it was a lot of fun and a pleasure to be part of.
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Quote by henrietta_fielding
Popping in for a cuppa here and to catch up with everyone's news. It's probably the last day of our heatwave, so I'm about to sit out in the garden and enjoy the sunshine (covered up and wearing SPF 50!) Hope everyone is enjoying their Sunday!

I am not going to give into the temptation of asking what this heatwave temperature is. I hope you enjoyed the sunshine.

Here it is cold and midwinter and 20 degrees. Lovely sunny day, though but the temp will drop overnight.

Good to see such good competition entries. I really enjoyed finishing mine, it was a story I had started a while ago.

I also re-published Oxford Street here which is my most highly regarded story, so do check that out it you get a moment. I would give you a link but of course I haven't done enough posts
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Quote by Molly
I just wanted to say thank you to everyone that participated in this competition. Also, thank you to those of you that took the time to read, score, and comment.

We have some excellent writers here and I'm always excited to see what you all come up with.

Just in case you didn't see, the winners will be announced on August 1st.

Best of luck!

Thanks Molly. Thanks to all those who had a part in organising what has been a wonderful competition, with every story so very good. Indeed this is a group of wonderful writers.

Some of you, who know me from elsewhere, know I'm a bit of a competition junkie (17 going on 18 in a row.) I am a chronic perfectionist who can still be editing months after any sane writer would have published. The Comps have deadlines which works for me, but are also a wonderful way of reading new writers and building a writing community.

This comp has been a favourite of mine, the friendliness and community is so strong here and that brings out the best in us all.

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Quote by Violet_the_Verbose
What a cozy space you all have here.

I'll just have a cuppa while I try and get a feel for this place. I made an account recently after hearing about the almost closure of the site. I was really moved by everyone's passion to keep Stories Space going. Hopefully, I will be able to contribute to the survivor contest if I stop procrastinating long enough to finish my draft. I got a late start. The few stories I've read so far have been outstanding.

For those that think they know me from the dark side, I will say there's absolutely nothing filthy or obscene about me. I don't even know what the dark side is. Here, I keep it clean.

I will join you for a cuppa, and one of Kat's yummy Snickerdoodles. Just what I need on this cool winter's afternoon.

There is a V synonym for procrastinating, Violet - go get writing Violet the Verbose, or else at competition closing time you might find yourself transformed into a called Vacillating Violet