Thanks to everyone for your submissions.

Comments on the quest below:

General observations:


As many of you know, not all submissions were accepted. Indeed, several submissions were not only rejected, but nuked.

The primary reason I rejected a submission was that it didn't follow the original intent of the quest. Some folks noded fiction which was obviously fiction. The quest was supposed to be about the author, and whether the node was fiction or not, the result was supposed to feel like a likely happenstance for an E2 noder.

That said, I had to turn down several well done fiction nodes. In two cases, the fiction I rejected was better executed than most of the true stories I accepted. In one case, a story so cleverly twisted the quest parameters in terms of wordplay and ingenuity, I felt it served as a good example for other noders. I included it. In another case, the story was so well-done it was plausable even though obviously fiction, and I included that. It was clear to me the noders of these works had put a lot of effort into their writing.

In all cases I awarded XP to noders who submitted superior fiction whether or not it was included in the quest.

The second reason I turned down a submission is that the adventure wasn't something that could be objectively considered an adventure. Many of those writeups were perfectly good, cool, E2 writeups. However, a story about getting carsick on the way to the mall, however well executed, doesn't stack up as an adventure beside a writeup on spending three days lost in the wilderness with no supplies.

The third reason I turned down a submission was that I simply couldn't fathom the writing. This is a purely subjective judgement on my part.

Editorial comments for SOME of the accepted nodes

Many of the nodes I accepted exhibited the same traits. I believe those nodes would be improved should some of these suggestions be considered.

  • Length: Many of the nodes could be between 20% and 60% shorter. Critical editing would lend focus and intensity to these nodes, which may ramble at times and lose the reader's attention.
  • Start: There's the old chestnut about "starting in the middle". Some of the submissions would be better if the first two or three paragraphs were simply lopped off. This indicates there's a bit of superfluous data clogging the start of these nodes. Getting rid of these would help capture the reader attention at the onset.
  • Getting to the point:Have I just said the same thing two times? How about three? Many nodes submitted described exciting situations. However, the reader had to get through a couple hundred words of unnecessary setup to get to the exciting part.
  • Adventure? What adventure? After creating hundreds of words of setup, many noders gave the adventure itself a completely perfunctory treatment. In some cases, the exciting, adventure part of the story received a one paragraph treatment after ten or more paragraphs of numbing setup. Adventures are frequently short, intense, blips in our lives. But the adventure story lives in that blip, and only bleeds into the life around it.
  • Being exciting: Noders have been shot at, in car crashes, in building fires, in wars, in violent protests, accosted by the underworld, blown up, faced with life or death medical emergencies, dropped from planes, lost in the wilderness, and nearly eaten by wild animals. These are exciting things, yet many times the authors provided little visceral description. That undermined the adrenaline rush we expect as the "payoff". In several cases I looked up from writeups describing harrowing real-life survivals, and I wondered how something so intense could be made to feel like a chapter from a chemistry textbook.
  • Being less poetic: I accepted a couple of very metaphorical adventures. Often, an adventure so overwhelms the senses it becomes a purely emotional experience. This is why I included that category. Some noders, to their credit, attempted the very emotional, internal treatment of such a story, but their approach made it difficult to "crack" through the metaphor and get to the adrenaline of the adventure. In other words--it's great to be poetic. Just make sure we can tell what happened.

Final word

There is the writing, and then there are the lives. These nodes represent a scant fraction of the adventure, good and bad, the community has faced. In many cases a noder sucked up his or her courage, and wrote down something that may have been seething in the back of the mind for ages. And so we see newly minted writers trying out their chops on their own experience. We see old pros twisting the world for our mutual amusement.

Some of this is excellent writing. Some of it isn't. But almost all of it comes from the heart.

I am very proud to see the recognition given these nodes. I am very proud of the people who relived difficult experiences to get something, anything written down. I am very proud that so many tried. You see, it's all about the trying.

Even when you're afraid.

Love to all.


Strangers in strange lands

Camels, sandpeaks and silhouettes, or, a very quiet adventure* by heyoka
Christmas among the headhunters* by Quizro
The true story of how I beat the crap out of King Kong, on top of the Empire State Building* by liveforever
Talisman by montecarlo
The saddest adventure I know by JordanM
The only things missing were a banjo and Jon Voight by tes
Why I ran away from home by WolfDaddy
The Salted Wife by AudieMcCall
Are they weapons? by sideways
Ruminations on being lost in a foreign country as a young boy by wonko
One Night in Figueras by The Debutante
Danger in the Land of Smiles by Simulacron3
Alcoholic gangsters and the way of the thumb, Japanese style by gn0sis
panhandler by shyHyena
Fear and Loathing in Rio de Janeiro - A teenage adventure of the tropics by ive_brussel
My head-on, rear-end collision by smartalix

Darkness falls, and I am far from home.

Long Journey Home* by tusitala
Camp Christmas by shokwave
Always carry a compass by HobbesWalsh
Hiking to see an alpine lake untouched by human hand by JediBix783
Gone Fishin' by allseeingeye
Swallow Falls by momomom
Maine is a big scary place by magicmanzach
What I learned in Boy Scouts by gandhiji
My first road trip by Yonder
The Hillcrest Inn: A pizza delivery adventure by TehBesto

I am at peace with my death, and live with him as a brother.

Let the Motherfucker Burn* by SharQ
rain delay* by TheDeadGuy
My first protest by Walter
High Speed Car Chase Through a Residential Area, or: Why You Shouldn't Piss Off a Mexican with a Gun
and My car es El Coche Magnifico, or: The Oregon Trail Rally eats my dust by wonko.
Adventures in Jail by evadyne
the day I turned green and The Tomato Incident by CloudStrife
I release the wheel as my car careens across the wide expanse of snow, heading for certain and untimely death by Randofu

The warrior's heart

What NOT to do in a Dogfight: A Ripping Adventure Yarn* by ring_wraith
Three times the Pale Rider came* by Roninspoon

What is left is inside when everything fades.

Like on a wire* by trembling
Adven Turing* by JohnnyGoodyear
Sleeps with Coyotes by loquacious
Seven footfalls. A tiny clank as a hand touches the doorknob.* by Trina
Who's going to believe a nine-year-old girl? by lara68
Sounds of cicadas by LaggedyAnne
In the halls of the dying by Blindwalker
And justice for all... especially the weak by NeonDarkness

Life is a sport. I am the ball.

Hang Gliding and Time stands still when you're in the tube by GrouchyOldMan
Between a rock and a hard place and Shut up and jump by Cloony
Gay Paris! Chronicles of a Women's Rugby Tour by Frankie
The Lyme Park Downhill Challenge by pjd
So I soloed the airplane by Wiccanpiper

It all went to hell so quickly.

Kismet, Hardy* and Peril on the Bishop Ford by Imprecation
Boy Scouts always carry pocket knives* by Roninspoon
Looking like a pirate is fun but only having one eye annoys me by corwin
detached retina by Dystopian Autocrat
Stolen truck, laceration, yes officer I can explain everything by izubachi
One step closer to life by Miriya
Source of the River by dscotese
Electrifying jump by shokwave
Forklifts and Fireballs: A tale of hardware horror by Servo5678
The Raft Ride by drownzsurf
Near death experiences that don't involve drinking six pints beforehand by LerrisofRecluse

Ooooh. My hero.

Neil Armstrong by Two Sheds
Dick Scobee by Chark
Toyotomi Hideyoshi by Monkeylover

The original quest call


Life is short, and it's nothing without a healthy dose of fear. Facing fear and pain makes us healthy and alive, and we've all done it, if only to face that first cold breath the moment we were born.

Since birth we've all confronted life's barrage with fear, trepidation, and unabashed joy. Adventure is what forces us to learn, gives us stories to tell over beers, and separates us from Aunt Maggie who thinks the government is trying to control our minds through the microwave oven and that only "foreigners" own dachshunds.

Adventure fuels the soul. Adventure inspires the spirit, puts a gleam in the eye, and makes one hideously attractive to sex partners.

Adventure, boys and girls! Adventure.

This is a call for your adventures. Take us on your first date. Take us to the time you got stuck in the crawl space with dead rats. Take us with you to the top of Kilimanjaro, over the Jonspur pass, and on your first step into that tiny jail cell you call a dorm room. Make us fly airplanes. Helicopters. Show us how to pilot motorboats or tack in a thirty knot wind. Let us hear the bullets whizzing past your ears, the rotweiller's teeth sinking into your calf, and the rotting grasp of the living dead clawing your ankles from the grave.

It's all about being afraid and coming out alive and sputtering for air, laughing like a kid's first dunk in a swimming pool. It's all about thinking you're in the worst trouble of your life, and then coming up free. It's all about knowing you're going to die, and then living another day. It's about sucking in every minute of life and treasuring each thundering heartbeat.

It's all about loving life.

There is one week. Node your adventures. Tell your best story and do not distract us with poor writing and you will be given votes, C's, and be forever blessed by XP. Tell the truth, or make shit up. It makes no difference if your story is honest and good.

Repeat: you must be honest, and good. That means we must believe you if your story is fact. We must believe you if your story is fiction. You must write well. You must write about YOU. No XP or praise for unoriginal work.

Be Hemingway. Be Bill Bryson or Tim Cahill. Be Sarah Wheeler. Be Anna Quindlen.

Be you having an adventure.

The XP rewards (if you're motivated by that sort of thing) come from wowing the powers that be. Receive some XP for participating. Let's say, 10. Receive some more XP for making me believe you. Say 10 to 20. If you can make me love you, there'll be even more. And, if you can make a bunch of the more senior writers here adore your story by garnering their Cs, you'll think you died and went to XP heaven.

For purposes of this quest, "senior" writers are the admins and eds, as well as some of the non-staff near-pros and pros that write here. Because the world is not fair, I will be the one who decides which non-staff Cs count as senior chings.

EXAMPLE: The names used below are EXAMPLES only.

Say you write something that gets cooled by riverrun, dannye, lometa, donfreenut, demeter, and panamaus--that might be worth some impressive XP. Depending on how strongly the staff feels, you'd be granted between 10 and 25 XP per C. Say you manage to add cools from Halspal, jessicapierce, and ToasterLeavings to that diverse and auspicious crew, we might double those numbers as you will have contributed a proven classic with universal appeal.

And if you can get a cool from the boss himself, not only will the XP flow like liquid helium, but more than that, you'll have the awe and adulation of your peers.

It's all good. It's all up to you.

You have one week starting now.

System time is the official clock. For purposes of scoring the Cs you gain, we'll wait one week from the close of submissions on the 14th to award the C-based XP so folks have time to read and decide whether or not to plant their cool on your unexplored turf.

Be good. Now, stop reading and write us something.

Notify me of submissions.

Quest Update:

By request I have added a category. If you would like to update your favorite hero's adventure, you may. Keep the subject to historical people and events, current or past.

Because this is more the standard quest motif, a more standard XP quest award will be given for these. There will be a flat +5XP for each submission.

Node away, but node accurately. References MUST be provided. No XP or credit for unoriginal work.

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