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January 2010 Potluck Challenge

Since December is a very busy month for most of us, what with RL holiday obligations, and the many fic exchanges that take place (including the GFIC Yule Exchange), we are not having a December Challenge. Instead, we are giving you a head-start on January's Challenge!

Once again we are having Potluck for the New Year! Behind the cut are the themes and unclaimed elements for ten months of 2009. (January and December are not included, as January is always "potluck" and December is always the Exchange). If you would like to participate in the January Challenge, look through the elements posted, and choose one. Comment to this post with the number of the prompt you have chosen, and I will strike it from the list. For June and July, you do not need to choose a prompt-- just follow the instructions for that month. This is your chance to take part in a challenge you missed. Also, if you claimed a prompt for any month last year and did not finish your story in time, you may enter that instead.

Stories will be due the weekend of January 15th, and will be revealed on Monday January 17th. Please remember to put your story title and your name on the subject line, and to use the header provided on the community profile page. Tag your story "010 january potluck challenge".

We look forward to seeing your stories!

Here are the themes and elements for 2009:

February 2009

The February Challenge stories, had the theme "Light and Shadow". Each story was to be a gapfiller, with an assigned gap.

Below are the "gap" prompts, listed by book.

From The Hobbit

1. In the chapter "A Short Rest" Thorin & Co. are making their way down into the valley of Rivendell when suddenly Bilbo thinks to himself: "Hmmm! it smells like Elves!" What do Elves smell like and why?

2.In the chapter "Over Hill and Under Hill" during a thunder storm in the Misty Mountains Bilbo sees, ". . . that across the valley the stone-giants were out, and were hurling rocks at one another for a game . . ." Later, in the chapter "Out of the Frying Pan Into the Fire", after the Dwarves and Bilbo get away from the goblins, Gandalf tells them that where they got captured was a new entrance into the goblin's realm, and Gandalf says: "I must see if I can't find a more or less decent giant to block it up again." Why are no giants mentioned in LOTR? What has happened to them?

From FotR:

3. What did Fatty and Merry talk about on their journey to Buckland with Frodo's things?

4. What did Gildor's Elves think and do among themselves *after* leaving Frodo, Sam and Pippin on their own? Were they worried about the Nine? Did they wonder why Gandalf had not met the hobbits? Did they send messages--if so, to whom, and how?

5.Gandalf's efforts to catch up to the hobbits and Strider--he missed them at Crickhollow, he missed them at the Pony, and he missed them at Weathertop. How did his journey go? Was he frustrated by never quite catching up to them or getting ahead of them?

6.Tell about Elrond sending Glorfindel and others out to search for the hobbits. What did Glorfindel think of his assignment?

7. How did Galadriel know that the Fellowship was headed for Lorien? or how did Haldir take her orders to allow the Fellowship (all of them) into Lorien?

From TTT:

8. It's implied that Treebeard encountered Gandalf before he found Merry and Pippin, and also before Gandalf found the Three Hunters. Tell us a little about how Gandalf came from Lorien to Fangorn.

9. What happened to the oliphaunt that stampeded past the hobbits in Ithilien? did it escape? did it die wandering far from home? was it recaptured by other men?

10. How did Gollum make "arrangements" with Shelob? how did he communicate with her? how did he manage not being eaten by her in the first place?

From RotK

11. Pippin has an amazing flash of insight about Gandalf as he dines with him and Denethor. What prompted it? Expand on it a bit. Or tell us about the hour of hard questions Denethor had for Pippin at that time--what did he ask him besides how Boromir died? How did Pippin avoid mentioning Frodo, the Ring or Aragorn?

12. We are given the names of many who came to fight for Gondor: Forlong, Dervorin, Duinhir and his sons, etc. Pick one or more and tell us a bit about him/them and what brought them to Minas Tirith.

13. The star Sam saw: was it Earendil? What would a star think about going back and forth across the heavens over the generations? Does he realize the hope he gives?

The Silmarilion

14.We see that each of the Valar has a different particular specialty, a love of one certain area of Arda, to which Ilúvatar assigns the responsibility, Ulmo for water, Aulë for earth, etc. What did He see in each of their hearts which caused him to choose them for their tasks?

15.Arien--tell of her being chosen to be the Sun. How did she feel about it? Did she consider it an honor? an obligation? a chance to get back at Morgoth?

16.It is said of the earliest of Men: "Yet it is told that ere long they met Dark Elves in many places, and were befriended by them and Men became the companions and disciples in their childhood of these ancient folk, wanderers of the Elven-race who never set out upon the paths to Valinor..." Tell of such a meeting or such a relationship.

17.It is said the Dwarves of Ered Luin learned much from the people of Caranthir, even though they were scornful of the Naugrim. POV of one of those Dwarves--how did he feel, learning useful knowledge, yet knowing that his teacher thought him "unlovely" and contemptible, even though profitable?

18. Tell us about the Dúnedain's first days as Númenoreans-- what did they make of their new home?

The Children of Húrin

19. Tell us something about the friendship of little five year old Túrin and the crippled thrall, Sador Labadal.

20. Who were the outlaws among whom Túrin stayed? Choose one and give us a bit of his background.

21. What did Húrin do after Morwen died?

March 2009

From the Tale of Years, Appendix B, the entry for March 15, T.A. 3019

In the early hours the Witch-King breaks the Gates of the City. Denethor burns himself on a pyre. The horns of the Rohirrim are heard at cockcrow. Battle of the Pelennor. Théoden is slain. Aragorn raises the standard of Arwen. Frodo and Samwise escape and begin their journey north along the Morgai. Battle under the trees in Mirkwood. Thranduil repels the forces of Dol Guldur. Second assault on Lórien.

And of course a number of other events take place within the context of the larger events: various individual conflicts within the battle; Pippin finding Merry after the battle; Imrahil's discovery that Éowyn was alive; Ioreth's reminding Gandalf about "the hands of the King are the hands of a healer"; and the healing of Faramir, Éowyn and Merry; and so on and so forth.

This month's theme is "The Ides of March". Your element will be a story starter sentence, and your assignment will be to write a story about any of the events that took place on that particular day!

22. (He/she) sheathed (his/her) sword with a snap, and turned to say _______ .
23. ___ looked around in a panic; where was ______?
24. (He/she) had never thought this was possible!
25. All was smoke and fire and confusion.
26. Before _____ could gather (his/her) wits, the enemy was upon them.

April 2009

The April Challenge will have a theme of "Renewal". You may interpret the theme in any way you choose. The element for this challenge will be a type of bird, which will be assigned to you--and you may also use that in any way you choose

27. Dove
28. Nightingale
29. Osprey

May 2009

The theme for the May Challenge will be "Fix the Movies"! This is your chance to add or change a scene from Peter Jackson's version of The Lord of the Rings! Choose any scene you want, and rewrite it in the way you think it should have gone, or add a missing scene, or explain a scene!

Your element will be a flower-- the flower does not have to be a main feature of the story, a mere mention of it is sufficient!

30. Delphinium
31. Nasturtian
32. Primrose

June 2009

The June Challenge theme was "The Wedding of Your Nightmares"--a story of wedding disasters! As an element authors were assigned a line from the old poem:

Something old,
Something new,
Something borrowed,
Something blue."


(For this one just comment with which line of the poem you chose as your element.)

July 2009

For the July Challenge at the LOTR GenFic Community, the Theme will be "Some Like it Hot", and all the stories will be Fixed-Length Ficlets. The element will be a number between 101 and 400. Interested authors can reply to this announcement and claim a number. No one will be allowed to have a number previously claimed. Whatever number is chosen will be the word count for your ficlet-- if you choose 237 your story must have exactly 237 words!

(For this one, just pick a number between 101 and 400, and comment with what number you chose.)

August 2009

The August Challenge will have the theme of "out on a limb". You may interpret the theme however you choose. Your element will be a particular tree.

33. ash
34. thorn
35. alder
36. chestnut

September 2009

The September Challenge will have the theme of "September 22". It does not have to be the most obvious September 22, nor does it have to be set in the Shire, but can be any September 22 at any place or any year or age of Middle-earth. Your element will be a story-starter sentence. The "starter" is to "get you started", and does not have to be the first sentence, but may appear anywhere in the story.


37."I never thought I should see the day come that ____________."
38, Who would believe it was autumn already?
39, It was time to put the garden to bed for the year,
40."Believe what you wish; ____ never said any such thing."

October 2009

The October Challenge will have the theme "Myths"! Use your imagination and come up with a story of a Middle-earth legend or myth. Your element will be a fruit.

41. bilberry
42. cherry
43. pear

November 2009

The November Challenge will have the theme "Dialogue". Stories should consist of all or nearly all, dialogue-- tags such as "he said" or "she said" will be allowed. But try to tell the entire story in conversation. Elements will be four random elements you will need to include in the story.

44. a judge, a mountain, a book and the color green
45. a parent, a kitchen, a bucket, and the word fragrant

Comments

( 25 comments — Leave a comment )
dreamflower02
Nov. 27th, 2009 01:55 pm (UTC)
38

Edited at 2010-01-13 10:06 pm (UTC)
wendwriter
Nov. 29th, 2009 05:43 pm (UTC)
Potluck
I'll take February, number 2.
dreamflower02
Nov. 29th, 2009 07:37 pm (UTC)
Re: Potluck
OK, you've got it!

Oh, I'm so glad you picked that one! I will really look forward to seeing what you come up with!

Edited at 2009-11-29 07:39 pm (UTC)
traveller19
Dec. 9th, 2009 03:30 am (UTC)
January Potluck!
I'll take May, #31 (Nasturtian), please!
dreamflower02
Dec. 9th, 2009 06:16 pm (UTC)
Re: January Potluck!
It's all yours! I look forward to seeing your story!
nautika3
Dec. 9th, 2009 08:49 pm (UTC)
I'm still trying to decide. I keep checking back to see if anyone has claimed one of the 3 I'm debating on. It would help narrow it down. :D

nautika
dreamflower02
Dec. 10th, 2009 01:48 pm (UTC)
Take them all if you want, LOL!
nautika3
Dec. 11th, 2009 12:55 am (UTC)
LOL! Thanks, but I'll do well to get one finished.

nautika
nautika3
Dec. 11th, 2009 04:23 am (UTC)
I've decided to do another November "Dialogue".

45. a parent, a kitchen, a bucket, and the word fragrant

Thanks!
nautika
dreamflower02
Dec. 11th, 2009 05:59 am (UTC)
You've got it!
mrowe
Dec. 30th, 2009 07:10 pm (UTC)
I'll try to finish one or two of the prompts that I failed on this year *g*
dreamflower02
Jan. 5th, 2010 04:48 am (UTC)
That's great!
pearltook1
Jan. 5th, 2010 02:43 am (UTC)
#13 :-)
dreamflower02
Jan. 5th, 2010 04:49 am (UTC)
You've got it now!
(Deleted comment)
dreamflower02
Jan. 7th, 2010 10:33 pm (UTC)
OK!
2milkteas
Jan. 9th, 2010 03:57 am (UTC)
I've never done a challenge before and I haven't written a fic in years, but I'm going to go ahead and take 16 as it looks very very interesting.
dreamflower02
Jan. 9th, 2010 04:22 am (UTC)
Number 16 is yours! We are always glad to have new folks! Welcome!

We have changed the due date from the weekend before the 17th to the weekend before the 25th, so you should have plenty of time! If you have any questions, please contact me!

wormwood_7
Jan. 9th, 2010 05:32 pm (UTC)
I think will give this another go, especially as you have extended the deadline. I'll take no.29 if I may.
dreamflower02
Jan. 9th, 2010 05:47 pm (UTC)
Number 29 it is!
lindahoyland
Jan. 10th, 2010 11:33 pm (UTC)
I've just written a drabble for the Nightingale prompt. Do I post it?
dreamflower02
Jan. 11th, 2010 03:02 am (UTC)
You can go ahead and post it early at lotr_community. It will stay hidden in the moderator's queue until the reveal date.

(We have extended that date to the 25th, but it's all right to post now.)
lindahoyland
Jan. 11th, 2010 03:14 am (UTC)
Thank you, I've posted it. My apologies for not getting round to writing the "Dialogue" prompt.

IF I'm inspired may I use any other of the free prompts for another drabble?
dreamflower02
Jan. 11th, 2010 12:46 pm (UTC)
You certainly may! Just let me know which ones you claim! *grin*
labourslamp
Jan. 25th, 2010 09:43 pm (UTC)
I'm nabbing #37 at after the last minute, since I never took the September challenge (though I did end up writing a story that month set then anyway!). I whipped up something for my old August prompt last night, and if I'm very lucky I can fit #37 to work as Part Two of the same tale.
dreamflower02
Jan. 25th, 2010 10:14 pm (UTC)
Have at it, dear! And post when ready!
( 25 comments — Leave a comment )

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