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ADMIN - how to vote

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  • telperion1
    Hey guys, We are now well into the voting phase of the MEFAs. The categories are set, all the nominations listed will be competing, and many people have set a
    Message 1 of 9 , Aug 4, 2010
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      Hey guys,

      We are now well into the voting phase of the MEFAs. The categories are
      set, all the nominations listed will be competing, and many people have
      set a reviewing goal. Of course it's not too late to get involved, but
      it's also not too early to start working toward reading and reviewing
      the stories.

      But how exactly do you do that? This week I want to talk about the
      practical side of entering a vote.

      **************************************

      GETTING READY TO REVIEW

      The first step is to find the story you want to review. To do this, you
      should

      --- 1. Log in to www.mefawards.net/MEFA2010/
      --- 2. Click the "Stories" link at the top of the page.

      From here, you can find the story in several ways. You can browse the
      stories listed. You can also do a text search to find a certain keyword
      in the title, author's name, or summary. If you know the story ID #, you
      can pull up that exact story by doing a search for that number, followed
      by the # sign. (So searching for "425#" brings up story #425.) You can
      also use the filter to find stories using a variety of items - length,
      characters involved, category choice, and so on.

      Once you've found a story to vote for, you can read it by clicking on
      the title. When you've done that, close the tab where you read it and
      you will go back to the MEFA website. Then just click on the link to
      "Enter a New Review" on the website. Once you've done that, you're ready
      to review.

      ***********************************

      ENTERING YOUR REVIEW

      The first thing you need to do is actually type in what you want to say.
      There are different strategies for different people, on how to write an
      affective review. Over the years I have developed a sense for when I've
      written 300-350 characters worth of text, and so use that as my
      guideline. If I want to give an author three points I write that much
      about the thing I most liked about the story (its pacing,
      characterization, theme, whatever). For 6-7 points, I do that for the
      two things I most like, and three elements usually gets me to ten
      points. Other veteran reiewers have different strategies, some of which
      are detailed in the FAQ (link at the bottom of this post). Ultimately
      it's up to you, how to decide what to write.

      If you enter reviews you should enclose them in blockquotes, like so:
      ["In a hole in the ground, there lived a hobbit."] This includes quotes
      from the story as well as from Tolkien or any other source - basically,
      anything other than your own words needs to be quoted off. Links, too,
      if you want to paste in a URL. You should also avoid including HTML,
      since MEFA reviews are text-only. So typing in "<b>wow!</b>" won't make
      that word bold, it will actually display the <b>. We're old school in
      that regard. Use text keys like asterisks and underscores, that people
      used to mark formatted text in Usenet and text-only email.

      It's also a good practice to copy your review to your clipboard, if
      you're typing it directly into the website. Otherwise you will lose what
      you've typed if you run into a problem in the next step.

      ***************************************

      SUBMITTING YOUR REVIEW

      Once you've typed in your review, it's time to preview it. I you've
      included spoilers, check that box. In either case, then click the
      "preview" button. This will show you the text you've just typed.
      Double-check that the title name is correct and that you didn't stop
      mid-sentence or anything.

      If you're satisfied, you just need to give it a status.

      --- Draft reviews are never counted or displayed. If you want it to give
      the author any points, you'll need to change the status later on.
      --- Hidden reviews can be edited until the end of the awards. But at
      that time, they'll be displayed and counting.
      --- Final reviews are displayed immediately, but can't be edited after
      you submit the review.

      Which you choose is up to you. I personally choose hidden most of the
      time, but it really depends on how satisfied I am with the particular
      review. Once you've chosen your status, click the "Save Validated
      Review" link.

      You'll be redirected to the main page you see when first logging in -
      but with a green text box at the top, saying your review has been saved.
      When you see that you're done with your review. Congrats!

      **********************************

      For more information:

      --- How do I find a story to vote for?
      http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2010/index.php?page=FAQvoting#vot_15
      --- How do I vote?
      http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2010/index.php?page=FAQvoting#vot_1
      --- What status should I give my reviews?
      http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2010/index.php?page=FAQvoting#vot_3
      --- Strategies for Reviewing
      http://www.mefawards.net/MEFA2010/index.php?page=FAQreviewing

      **********************************

      P.S. - Don't forget, the deadline to set your reviewing goal is August
      15. (As in, 11:59 PM GMT on August 15.) Don't put it off until the last
      minute.

      P.P.S. - Also don't forget, Annmarwalk is posting reviews to the
      [mefa-reviews] Yahoo group and the [mefas] LJ community. Join up to get
      MEFA reviews displayed on your LJ friends page, or sent to you by email.

      **********************************

      Marta
      (MEFA Admin.)
    • elhanan_austin
      I would add one other reviewing tip to this, Marta: I create a document in WORD and write my reviews out first and then copy and paste them into the review box
      Message 2 of 9 , Aug 5, 2010
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        I would add one other reviewing tip to this, Marta: I create a document in WORD and write my reviews out first and then copy and paste them into the review box on MEFA. It seems every year there is at least one person complaining about how they were typing in their review when their two hours came up and the system shut down, so they lost their review. Writing it out beforehand in WORD, or whatever wordprocessing program you use, eliminates that particular problem.

        Usually, as soon as I am satisfied with the review I will copy and paste it to MEFA and choose 'final'. Even if I'm not quite satisfied, once I have something written for a particular story, I'll copy it into MEFA and choose 'hidden' and then I know that even if I don't do anything more with the review, it will still be counted at the end of the voting period.

        Writing reviews this way I find is less stressful since I'm not writing under a time constraint. It's not as frustrating and makes the entire voting process (for me) more enjoyable.

        Just thought I would share this tip with everyone.

        Fiondil
      • Ellin Ithilwen
        ...     Is it OK to describe a little bit of personal experience in finding and reviewing stories? *unsure* [Non-text portions of this message have been
        Message 3 of 9 , Aug 5, 2010
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          > On Wed, 8/4/10, telperion1 <marta.fandom@...> wrote:

          > The first step is to find the story you want to review.
          > From here, you can find the story in several ways.
           
           
          Is it OK to describe a little bit of personal experience in finding and reviewing stories? *unsure*




          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • marta.fandom@gmail.com
          Hi Fiondil, Those are all good suggestions. I left them off because I felt like the post was getting a little long, and some people have not been able to use
          Message 4 of 9 , Aug 5, 2010
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            Hi Fiondil,

            Those are all good suggestions. I left them off because I felt like the post was getting a little long, and some people have not been able to use that suggestion because of older computers. But by all means, feel free to use it (Fiondiul or anyone) if it works for you.

            Marta

            +++++++

            I would add one other reviewing tip to this, Marta: I create a document in WORD and write my reviews out first and then copy and paste them into the review box on MEFA. It seems every year there is at least one person complaining about how they were typing in their review when their two hours came up and the system shut down, so they lost their review. Writing it out beforehand in WORD, or whatever wordprocessing program you use, eliminates that particular problem.Usually, as soon as I am satisfied with the review I will copy and paste it to MEFA and choose 'final'. Even if I'm not quite satisfied, once I have something written for a particular story, I'll copy it into MEFA and choose 'hidden' and then I know that even if I don't do anything more with the review, it will still be counted at the end of the voting period.Writing reviews this way I find is less stressful since I'm not writing under a time constraint. It's not as frustrating and makes the entire voting process (for me) more enjoyable.Just thought I would share this tip with everyone.Fiondil
            Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry
          • telperion1
            ... Hi Ellynn, I don t have a problem with it. But please change the subject line so that people can find my original post more easily. Marta
            Message 5 of 9 , Aug 5, 2010
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              On 8/5/2010 1:47 PM, Ellin Ithilwen wrote:
              >
              >
              > > On Wed, 8/4/10, telperion1 <marta.fandom@...
              > <mailto:marta.fandom%40gmail.com>> wrote:
              >
              > > The first step is to find the story you want to review.
              > > From here, you can find the story in several ways.
              >
              >
              > Is it OK to describe a little bit of personal experience in finding and
              > reviewing stories? *unsure*
              >

              Hi Ellynn,

              I don't have a problem with it. But please change the subject line so
              that people can find my original post more easily.

              Marta
            • Ellin Ithilwen
              Hi everyone!   I certainly don t think that my way is the best, but it suits me. I did so last year, when I was a newbie to MEFA, and I do the same way this
              Message 6 of 9 , Aug 6, 2010
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                Hi everyone!
                 
                I certainly don't think that my way is the best, but it suits me. I did so last year, when I was a newbie to MEFA, and I do the same way this year.
                I reviewed some stories when nominating them; not all, though, but ony because it didn't have enough time in that moment, and I will do that later. But that was in the nominating season, and now I want to describe the way I do it in the voting season. I start immidiately after nominating season is finished.
                I log in and go to stories, and then click on the ID, so that the stories are sorted by their numbers (#). And from that point, I simply scroll down and read. ;) I take a look at the summary, characters involved, genre and all other details, and then decide if it interests me or not (for example, I am not a fan of hobbits, or of poetry, so I skip such stories). Of course, many stories are familiar to me, I've read them throughout the year, while some are new to me. So, if I've read that particular story before, the title and summary simply remind me of it, and I enter the review. If the story is new to me, and if I see that it will be interesting to me from its summary and other details, I read it. After reviewing, I go to the next story on the list, read details, and so on... you get the picture. :)
                I usually do that during my break at work. And sometimes I make my break a little bit longer, so that I can read more... *blush* The next day, I simply go on where I stopped last time. ;) And that's it! :)
                 
                Perhaps this is not convenient for all readers, and perhaps others will find the ways more suitable for them, but this works just fine for me. I never use filters and sort stories by genre, races etc. As I said, there are some genres that are not my cup of tea, but there are always exceptions, so I want to give a chance to all stories.
                 
                That's it from me. Bye! :)
                 
                Ellynn




                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • Barbara Rich
                Just thought I d mention something new I am trying this year! It will not be possible for everyone, and I don t know how well it will work for me, as it is so
                Message 7 of 9 , Aug 6, 2010
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                  Just thought I'd mention something new I am trying this year! It will not
                  be possible for everyone, and I don't know how well it will work for me, as
                  it is so new.

                  We recently got a Nook, an e-reader from Barnes & Noble similar to the
                  Kindle from Amazon. So I'm trying the idea of downloading stories on my
                  wish list that I have not yet read into it. Meanwhile, I am working on
                  reviews for stories I've already read, mostly in a Word file. Any others I
                  am keeping hidden until I have a certain portion of my goal met.

                  Time will tell if this new strategy is any better than the old.

                  Dreamflower


                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • Bonnie L. Sherrell
                  I tend to skip around a good deal, although this year I m mostly reading from back to front according to the order the website has sorted itself for me. I
                  Message 8 of 9 , Aug 6, 2010
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                    I tend to skip around a good deal, although this year I'm mostly reading from
                    back to front according to the order the website has sorted itself for me. I
                    prefer to read stories that involve members of the Fellowship during most of the
                    year; MEFA time is my time to spread my wings and read all kinds of stories by
                    authors who don't necessarily post on the archives where I do most of my
                    reading, and in genres I don't necessarily read the rest of the year. I work on
                    one longer story at a time, and intersperse short stories and ficlets in
                    between. I usually put off works in progress until near the end unless they are
                    a story I'm following anyway. I've been averaging about five reviews a day, and
                    I hope to get well beyond my review goal again this year. And when one of the
                    stories that comes up in the random suggestion on the home page for me, I will
                    sometimes read that. I always use the "Have not reviewed" filter, and am now
                    down to 19 pages coming up--will probably be down to eighteen tomorrow or Sunday
                    evening.
                    Bonnie L. Sherrell
                    Teacher at Large

                    "Then do not be too eager to deal out death in judgement. For even the very wise cannot see all ends." LOTR

                    "Don't go where I can't follow."
                  • Linda
                    I usually start reviewing in earnest once the review season starts as I visit the site most days to check for reviews and write a few while I m there. I use
                    Message 9 of 9 , Aug 7, 2010
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                      I usually start reviewing in earnest once the review season starts as I visit the site most days to check for reviews and write a few while I'm there.

                      I use Google Chrome browser for reviewing as it shows any spelling errors, which as a dreadful typist, I make a lot!

                      I usually first review stories that I enjoyed during the year and have already read, but if anything in the random story or review takes my eye I'll check it out,especially later in the season. It is a feature I especially like.

                      Linda

                      --- In MEFAwards@yahoogroups.com, "Bonnie L. Sherrell" <blslarner@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > I tend to skip around a good deal, although this year I'm mostly reading from
                      > back to front according to the order the website has sorted itself for me. I
                      > prefer to read stories that involve members of the Fellowship during most of the
                      > year; MEFA time is my time to spread my wings and read all kinds of stories by
                      > authors who don't necessarily post on the archives where I do most of my
                      > reading, and in genres I don't necessarily read the rest of the year. I work on
                      > one longer story at a time, and intersperse short stories and ficlets in
                      > between. I usually put off works in progress until near the end unless they are
                      > a story I'm following anyway. I've been averaging about five reviews a day, and
                      > I hope to get well beyond my review goal again this year. And when one of the
                      > stories that comes up in the random suggestion on the home page for me, I will
                      > sometimes read that. I always use the "Have not reviewed" filter, and am now
                      > down to 19 pages coming up--will probably be down to eighteen tomorrow or Sunday
                      > evening.
                      > Bonnie L. Sherrell
                      > Teacher at Large
                      >
                      > "Then do not be too eager to deal out death in judgement. For even the very wise cannot see all ends." LOTR
                      >
                      > "Don't go where I can't follow."
                      >
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