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Advice before submitting a story Options · View
principessa
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 12:38:20 PM

Rank: Sophisticate

Joined: 8/23/2011
Posts: 3,948
Location: Canada
If you want to see your story published on its first submission, here are some tips:

Please read our site guidelines to make sure your story is compliant. This is very important. Certain scenarios and sexual practices are not allowed. Cardinal sins are rape, sex with an underage person (under 16 years of age), violence and bestiality. Submitting a story containing any of those could see your whole account terminated.

Please do not depend on spell check to edit your story. Read it carefully to check your spelling because spell check will allow misspellings that are words, often with hilarious results, e.g. I put my arms around her waste. (That was in a story. I did not make it up.)

Please format your story into paragraphs of about four sentences or where the narrative should logically break. All dialogue should be formatted into separate paragraphs each time someone speaks. A mass of prose with few or no paragraph breaks will be returned to you.

Please read your story paying attention to where you pause. There should be a comma there if it is a phrase or a full stop if it is a complete thought.

Read the Writer's Resources about the use of apostrophes if you are not sure. They are not for plurals. They are used either for contractions or to signify possession. Read it for other punctuation marks to know that you are using them correctly.

Please do not overuse exclamation marks. They lose their power if used in every other sentence.

Please check your verb tense throughout your story to be sure it is consistent. Many submissions have tense shifts from past to present and back again.

Please take a look at the proper form for punctuation, formatting, and capital/lower case letters for dialogue in published stories and follow that example in your story.

Please do not use text speak/emoticons in your story or short forms like &, or ok, or lbs. Use the entire words.

Please express all numbers in your story as words unless they refer to measurements or the time of day. Remember the hyphens for age, e.g. 18-year-old. Numbers may never start a sentence or paragraph, whatever they describe. In these cases they should always be expressed as words.

Your title should not be formatted in all caps and should not include text speak or emoticons. Do not repeat the title in the body of your story. Notes to the reader should be at the end of your story.

Please do not expect that you can spend an hour putting your thoughts in writing and that it will be published. The writers whose work is most admired here on Lush spend time editing and improving their stories before they are submitted and published. If you put in the time and effort, you will have the satisfaction of only minor edits being done by the mods and your story will be posted on its first submission.

Please do not resubmit your story as new with no changes after it has been returned to you for editing. This is a waste of the volunteer time of the mods as well as your time and risks a suspension from publishing if you continue to do this. Please do your edits within Lush so that the moderators can see previous editorial notes to you on your resubmitted story. Lush maintains a high quality of erotica by insisting that stories be literate before they are published. We are certain that you would not want that to change.

Walk away from your story for a few hours, or as long as a day. When you keep rereading your story, you see what should be there because you know what you have written. Time and distance will give you the perspective to see your mistakes.

Please take the time to read the resources available on all aspects of writing in the writers' forum. They will help you polish your work and allow it to be published more quickly.

Please read some of the Editors' Picks stories to get an idea of the standard of stories we'd like to see submitted.

Finally, a thank you when you have been helped by us would be appreciated. As I said, we volunteer our time and spend hours working on your stories. We really do want to post them for you.


sprite
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 12:48:34 PM

Rank: Her Royal Spriteness

Joined: 6/18/2010
Posts: 13,738
Location: My Tower, United States
i thought it was ok to just send it in however, and the mods would fix it up for me - i mean, sometimes i can't be bothered with typos and grammar and shit - i'm an artist, you know!
principessa
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 1:19:37 PM

Rank: Sophisticate

Joined: 8/23/2011
Posts: 3,948
Location: Canada
sprite wrote:
i thought it was ok to just send it in however, and the mods would fix it up for me - i mean, sometimes i can't be bothered with typos and grammar and shit - i'm an artist, you know!


I had a story yesterday that began with a note saying that the writer knew it had grammar and spelling mistakes but it was a first draft. The story had no formatting, all one paragraph, and not one capital letter but for the characters' names. It indeed was full of spelling and grammatical errors and more. I sent it back to her with a list of the problems and a suggestion that she read the resources and take the time to edit it before resubmitting.

Wonderful writers like sprite actually do several drafts and spend hours polishing their stories before submitting them.

seeker4
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 1:24:54 PM

Rank: Story Verifier

Joined: 10/17/2012
Posts: 2,929
Location: In the great, beautiful Cosmos, Canada
Yeesh. I'd be more productive if I followed that writer's example. Instead, I tend to over-think my stories and proof them to death, usually losing interest in them long before I get to the point of publication.

Recent Stories:

Looking for dessert? Try visiting...

Sweet Tasty Treats

** A Lush Recommended Read!! **


He went looking for an interview. He found something more.

The Professor
sprite
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 1:42:47 PM

Rank: Her Royal Spriteness

Joined: 6/18/2010
Posts: 13,738
Location: My Tower, United States
seeker4 wrote:
Yeesh. I'd be more productive if I followed that writer's example. Instead, I tend to over-think my stories and proof them to death, usually losing interest in them long before I get to the point of publication.


the biggest issue we have is grammar, spelling, typos, punctuation, etc - when we ask you to proof/edit, it really should be just a matter of fixing all those bumps in the road - and no ones asking for perfection. i still miss a few things myself, and go back and edit them months later and if i find them when modding a story, if there's not a lot of them, i usually just go ahead and fix them for the author. what does make our job difficult is when a story comes in like the one Princepessa spoke about - worse, are the ones that lie somewhere inbetween, where you don't really know if it's going to tip the scales until you get to the end - thoughtful writers we can mod as fast as it takes to read their stories - others will cost us up to 4 times that, keeping us busy on a single story and holding back everyone elses story from being published.

here's a secret, btw, we WANT you to get your story out - we don't like rejecting them, we even go to great lengths, at times, so that we can get it out on the front page. that said, we want to get your story out so that you can be proud of it, that other can enjoy it. there are some, i won't mention names, who were hot messes when they started submitting their stories, we sent them back, explaining why, and they took it to heart and have gotten good and popular and that kind of makes our day. we want you to succeed and keep this site as what it is, the best f'ing erotic story site on the internet fueled by you, the writers. you guys make this place happen - without you it would just be endless forum questions about girls shaving their pubes or guys with average sized penises! :)
Guest
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 1:44:05 PM

Rank: Lurker

Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 474,002
sprite wrote:
i thought it was ok to just send it in however, and the mods would fix it up for me - i mean, sometimes i can't be bothered with typos and grammar and shit - i'm an artist, you know!


Yeah but even the mods don't pick up all your typos etc. drunken
sprite
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 1:54:22 PM

Rank: Her Royal Spriteness

Joined: 6/18/2010
Posts: 13,738
Location: My Tower, United States
sisters wrote:


Yeah but even the mods don't pick up all your typos etc. drunken


lol - i know. one day i am going to go back and totally clean up ALL my stories - i think the only thing i ever wrote error free was my comp story, and omg, you do NOT want to know how many times i picked through that before sending it in. :)
principessa
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 1:56:23 PM

Rank: Sophisticate

Joined: 8/23/2011
Posts: 3,948
Location: Canada
sisters wrote:


Yeah but even the mods don't pick up all your typos etc. drunken


You can always edit again after your story is submitted. If it is only a few small corrections, it will be verified quickly. Whistle

DLizze
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 2:08:52 PM

Rank: Story Verifier

Joined: 4/23/2011
Posts: 2,521
This is excellent advice, Principessa. I would add only one more instruction: Pease read the Lush site forum, posting, publishing and profile guidelines.

Even when a story breaks guidelines, we still have to take the time to read it all the way through, to see if there is a way to possibly re-write the story so that it can be acceptable. So the time consumed by a story that breaks rules is the same (or greater) than the time consumed to verify one that does not. That is unfair to writers who are not breaking the rules. If you are in doubt, follow the rule for theater pit musicians: "When in doubt, leave it out."

Incidentally, all of us verifiers have, at some time or another, received an argumentative message from an author who feels his or her story is no good without the rule-breaking scene. In the year since I started verifying stories, I have seen only one story that broke rules which was so well written that I wished there was some way we could bend them. So please don't waste our time (and yours) arguing with a mod's decision to reject a story.

"There's only three tempos: slow, medium and fast. When you get between in the cracks, ain't nuthin' happenin'." Ben Webster
LauraLee_sugah
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 2:43:54 PM

Rank: Purveyor of Sweetness

Joined: 9/10/2011
Posts: 2,324
Location: the sweet, sunny south, United States
you are our queen, principessa. great advice.

i have one more thing that may help. read your story to yourself out loud. sometimes you will pick up errors and sentences that make absolutely no sense.



sometimes i have to watch....

read my masturbation story, Isla
DXM
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 2:56:04 PM

Rank: Active Ink Slinger

Joined: 11/26/2012
Posts: 17
Location: United States
On the proofreading note, a question: Does anyone have advice on how to effectively proofread for typos? When I reread something I've written my brain can pick out things like verb tense, overuse of a particular word, or phasing that sounds clumsy. But for whatever reason if I make a simple typo - say, "lake" instead of "make" - when I go back and reread it, my head puts the sound "make" in my head and I don't catch it no matter how many times I reread.

Does anyone else have this issue? If so, how do you deal with it?
overmykneenow
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 3:01:39 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 6/8/2010
Posts: 966
Location: United Kingdom
sisters wrote:


Yeah but even the mods don't pick up all your typos etc. drunken


Sometimes they add them… I'm English, I spell "travelling" with two Ls not one! ;)

Warning: The opinions above are those of an anonymous individual on the internet. They are opinions, unless they're facts. They may be ill-informed, out of touch with reality or just plain stupid. They may contain traces of irony. If reading these opinions causes you to be become outraged or you start displaying the symptoms of outrage, stop reading them immediately. If symptoms persist, consult a psychiatrist.

Why not read some stories instead
principessa
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 3:01:56 PM

Rank: Sophisticate

Joined: 8/23/2011
Posts: 3,948
Location: Canada
DXM wrote:
On the proofreading note, a question: Does anyone have advice on how to effectively proofread for typos? When I reread something I've written my brain can pick out things like verb tense, overuse of a particular word, or phasing that sounds clumsy. But for whatever reason if I make a simple typo - say, "lake" instead of "make" - when I go back and reread it, my head puts the sound "make" in my head and I don't catch it no matter how many times I reread.

Does anyone else have this issue? If so, how do you deal with it?


My suggestion is that you walk away from it for a few hours, or as long as a day. When you keep rereading your story, you see what should be there because you know what you have written. Time and distance will give you the perspective to see your mistakes. It usually works for me. Unfortunately, I have picked up small errors after something is posted too, but as I said before, you can always go back and edit even then.

I hope that helps a little.

overmykneenow
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 3:10:36 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 6/8/2010
Posts: 966
Location: United Kingdom
DXM wrote:
On the proofreading note, a question: Does anyone have advice on how to effectively proofread for typos? When I reread something I've written my brain can pick out things like verb tense, overuse of a particular word, or phasing that sounds clumsy. But for whatever reason if I make a simple typo - say, "lake" instead of "make" - when I go back and reread it, my head puts the sound "make" in my head and I don't catch it no matter how many times I reread.

Does anyone else have this issue? If so, how do you deal with it?


Try scanning the words in reverse order. You'll read the words rather than the sentences; strange words should stand out.

Warning: The opinions above are those of an anonymous individual on the internet. They are opinions, unless they're facts. They may be ill-informed, out of touch with reality or just plain stupid. They may contain traces of irony. If reading these opinions causes you to be become outraged or you start displaying the symptoms of outrage, stop reading them immediately. If symptoms persist, consult a psychiatrist.

Why not read some stories instead
Mazza
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 3:23:56 PM

Rank: Mazztastic

Joined: 9/20/2012
Posts: 2,858
Location: Scotland, United Kingdom
It's nice when the mods DO work with the authors though, if they've put in the effort that is...

Sometimes a few kind words, some gentle encouragement and pointers to resources where they can find the help they need from the story verifiers can be the difference between a writer working to get his piece up to scratch or giving up completely. I know that there are a few mods who do this and some great writers have come out of it. It's good for Lush and a good way of encouraging people who might not really have the confidence to write, to actually give it a go.

They do say that we all have a book in us, don't they (eeew not IN us, you perverts)

Great thread PP!

DXM
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 3:28:02 PM

Rank: Active Ink Slinger

Joined: 11/26/2012
Posts: 17
Location: United States
Thanks, I'll try that.
principessa
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 3:31:45 PM

Rank: Sophisticate

Joined: 8/23/2011
Posts: 3,948
Location: Canada
Mazza wrote:
It's nice when the mods DO work with the authors though, if they've put in the effort that is...

Sometimes a few kind words, some gentle encouragement and pointers to resources where they can find the help they need from the story verifiers can be the difference between a writer working to get his piece up to scratch or giving up completely. I know that there are a few mods who do this and some great writers have come out of it. It's good for Lush and a good way of encouraging people who might not really have the confidence to write, to actually give it a go.

They do say that we all have a book in us, don't they (eeew not IN us, you perverts)

Great thread PP!



Thanks, Mazza.

I think all of the mods will spend the time working with someone who clearly wants to make an effort and learn. There have been some interesting and gratifying transitions in the quality of the work. It does get frustrating when we receive things like the first draft that I mentioned above. If someone demonstrates that they do not want to spend any time on their writing, why should we rewrite it entirely for them? Sometimes they just need to understand the process and the standards that are applied.

I think the expression is sweat equity. If you put some in, we will spend lots of time helping you. It is satisfying for both the mod and the writer when this happens and we do get the occasional thank you.



Iain69
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 4:35:23 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 1/19/2012
Posts: 175
Location: United Kingdom
Like most things in life: if you want to succeed (or should that read "suck seed"?) you have to put in some effort. I've had a few stories rejected, but invariably because I haven't taken the time to read and re-readmy story several times. Having a sticky space bar doesn't helpeither (there it goes again)but I won't dwell onhow (fuck again!) it got like that.... The mods (especially you PP) are great also, helping make a silk purse out of my sows ear!
principessa
Posted: Monday, December 03, 2012 5:03:29 PM

Rank: Sophisticate

Joined: 8/23/2011
Posts: 3,948
Location: Canada
Iain69 wrote:
Like most things in life: if you want to succeed (or should that read "suck seed"?) you have to put in some effort. I've had a few stories rejected, but invariably because I haven't taken the time to read and re-readmy story several times. Having a sticky space bar doesn't helpeither (there it goes again)but I won't dwell onhow (fuck again!) it got like that.... The mods (especially you PP) are great also, helping make a silk purse out of my sows ear!


I have an idea about how that might have happened but I won't embarass both of us by posting it publicly.

Thank you for the thank you. All of the mods (especially me) appreciate it. Seeing your stories posted in good shape and the thank you makes all of the work, yours and ours, worthwhile. flower

swollen
Posted: Tuesday, December 04, 2012 12:20:09 AM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 5/27/2010
Posts: 997
Regaeman Man
overmykneenow wrote:


Try scanning the words in reverse order. You'll read the words rather than the sentences; strange words should stand out.


Shame we can't do the same with you men! evil4
stephanie
Posted: Tuesday, December 04, 2012 3:45:09 AM

Rank: Bohemian

Joined: 1/1/2010
Posts: 4,622
Location: Dublin, Ire., Ireland
LauraLee_sugah wrote:
you are our queen, principessa. great advice.

i have one more thing that may help. read your story to yourself out loud. sometimes you will pick up errors and sentences that make absolutely no sense.



Great advice...

xx Steph.



"I'm a writer... Honesty is not my first language..." (Stephen Flashman)
DXM
Posted: Tuesday, December 04, 2012 8:53:21 AM

Rank: Active Ink Slinger

Joined: 11/26/2012
Posts: 17
Location: United States
Overmyknee, I wouldn't have thought of that in a million years. I'll try it. Thanks.
nicola
Posted: Sunday, January 20, 2013 7:07:12 PM

Rank: Matriarch

Joined: 12/6/2006
Posts: 24,922
Location: Sydney, Australia
Excellent advice Principessa, I've stickied this post.
keoloke
Posted: Sunday, January 20, 2013 10:18:47 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 8/12/2010
Posts: 560
Location: United States
Not trying to give anyone help here, I cannot as I need it for myself. Just sharing my experience.

Principessa, you're right about walking away from the story. When I do return and review it, I realize of some stupid mistakes that I made (imagine what a mod can pick up). Also, I have found that reading it aloud, helps me by actually listening to my own writing. Besides the grammar, I pick up transition problems and/ or paragraph that do not lead anywhere or just not in a smooth sequence.

So, thank you Principessa. Your advices and this thread is “good reads”.


P.S. on another note. We could make things easier for anyone, by just lowering the quality standard of Lush. Fire the almighty from Down Under and publish any story including mine. Duh, how we didn't think of this before. EEEhhhh I like it… NOT



Choose n Practice Happiness

Life is simple; we are what we eat and what we read. Talk is superfluous.
marcosurbina
Posted: Sunday, January 27, 2013 7:06:20 AM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 6/28/2007
Posts: 1,864
Location: Valladolid, Yucatán
Thank you, principessa. Remember Marcos? Hugs
Guest
Posted: Monday, February 04, 2013 1:00:36 PM

Rank: Lurker

Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 474,002
DXM wrote:
On the proofreading note, a question: Does anyone have advice on how to effectively proofread for typos? When I reread something I've written my brain can pick out things like verb tense, overuse of a particular word, or phasing that sounds clumsy. But for whatever reason if I make a simple typo - say, "lake" instead of "make" - when I go back and reread it, my head puts the sound "make" in my head and I don't catch it no matter how many times I reread.

Does anyone else have this issue? If so, how do you deal with it?


My first suggestion would be to give it to someone else to look over. They're less likely to gloss over your typos, since they didn't write them.

Another suggestion is to convert the story to a crappy font and print it out. If you're working to read, you're more likely to actually read what's on the page, and not what's in your head.
hotgirluk26
Posted: Monday, March 25, 2013 2:54:42 AM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 3/15/2013
Posts: 125
Location: Greater Manchester, United Kingdom
My first effort was wonderful, or so I thought. It got rejected several times before I resorted to reading the guidelines and the advice the moderators were sending me. (So, I am a stubborn bitch) Now I have to admit that the first story was not good, and what is more, I now know why it was rejected and agree that it should have been rejected.
I cannot thank the moderators enough for their time and patience. As a result of the advice, from them and from reading the writers' forum posts, the next story I submitted was published after only one rejection and that was over a single sentence which came close to breaching a site rule. The next was published (yesterday) with NO rejections or editing needed.
Thanks sincerely.
Sandrine
Posted: Thursday, April 04, 2013 9:00:34 PM

Rank: Senior Story Verifier

Joined: 5/16/2010
Posts: 1,321
Location: 12 hours away from him, United States
Also, before submitting your story, please make sure your story flows and sentences are complete.



In custody.

I love baseball!!!


TeenVintageLace
Posted: Monday, April 15, 2013 9:15:18 PM

Rank: Rookie Scribe

Joined: 3/10/2013
Posts: 2
Something I learned when I submitted my first story was to make sure your English is American English. I am from Australia and we use British English and according to the mods my story was riddled with spelling mistakes, but to me it was spelled fine. Maybe it was because I was so close to my story to not see the errors, as you normally are as the writer. On another thought there probably were a few errors but hey? Writers are touchy you know? Haha :)
Lisa
Posted: Monday, April 15, 2013 9:29:00 PM

Rank: Moderator

Joined: 3/3/2009
Posts: 5,114
Location: Victoria, Australia
TeenVintageLace wrote:
Something I learned when I submitted my first story was to make sure your English is American English. I am from Australia and we use British English and of course according to the mods my story was riddled with spelling mistakes, but to me it was perfectly edited. I was a little disappointed in this flaw on Lush, that the site doesn't cater for different dialects of English, considered multiple cultures use this site to share their stories. Just a heads up to anyone who finds their story fine but the admin team rejects it.


Grace, your story was actually reviewed and returned to you by an Australian moderator. She mentioned that there were some spelling/grammatical errors and that it only required a little editing in order for it to be verified. I just took a look and can see a few errors in the first two paragraphs. I'll take a proper look now and work through it with you.

All moderators are aware of the differences between American and British English, regardless of which country they're from. In future it's always best to reply directly to the moderator who removes your story if you have any queries or disagree with the reasons for removal.
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