06 August 2016 @ 04:46 pm
"How To" Post  
Dealing with Archive of Our Own (AO3)
Because of the way matching works, to sign up for this challenge, you must have an AO3 account, and you will need to host your art or story on AO3.

How do I sign up with AO3?
To sign up you need an invitation code. There are two ways to get one.
1. E-mail the mods (femslashexmod@gmail.com) or leave a comment here and the mods can send you a code.
2. You can enter the queue over at AO3, and they can give you a code. Warning: the queue is currently about three days long. I'd really rec option #1.
Once you have your invitation, just follow the instructions here.


Great, I have my account, now what?
  • Remember these important dates:
    15-25 August: Nomination Period
    28 August to 7 September: Signups open

  • You will be able to nominate fandoms and relationships to the tag set, once nominations open. This will be the list the exchange draws from, so if you really want to write or draw a pairing, make sure that you or someone else nominates it. Discussions of nominating for FemslashEx 2016 are here.

  • You can sign up for the exchange! Which doesn't start until 28 August, but when the time comes, just follow these steps:
    a. Go to the challenge page on AO3: Femslash Exchange 2016
    b. Read the FAQ and Rules (in link above).
    c. Go to the tag set and decide what you want to sign up for.
    d. Press the "Sign Up" button in the upper right corner, which will be visible when the challenge is open, and fill out the form.
    e. If you're confused, check out these guides: Tutorial: signing up for a gift exchange & How do I sign up to participate in a gift exchange?


Useful guides to posting your work:
Tutorial: Posting a Work on AO3
Tutorial: posting to a challenge (ignore the step about finding the challenge, and just go to: Femslash Exchange 2016)
A Users’ Guide to AO3 Tagging (Which works a bit differently from tumblr tagging).


How do I post treats and pinch hits when I don't have an AO3 account?
Short version: e-mail the mods at femslashexmod@gmail.com.
Long version: There is a mod account, FemslashEx_Mod, associated with the challenge.

If you don't have an AO3 account, the mods can post your treat via that account. All you have to do is e-mail the mods with your story, the url of your art (it has to be hosted somewhere that allows embedding) and who you'd like to give it to, and the mods can make the post for you.

After the anon period is over, they can then link back to your own tumblr/blogspot/deviantart/website, so that you get the proper credit. If you later get an AO3 account, the work can be transferred to you.


How to I change the date on my work so that it shows up in the tags?
Because the due date is so long before the reveals, if you just leave your work at the same day you posted it, it can be days or weeks back in the fandom and pairing tags, and unless someone's reading through the collection, they're unlikely to spot your art or story.

To fix this, edit your work, and tick the "Set a different publication date" box, and change the date to the day of the reveals. You'll have to do this on or after the date of the reveals, as you can't set it to the future. Please only do this once.


Various Fanart-Related Questions

How do I write art-friendly prompts?
If you're requesting fanart, it's a good idea to consider whether or not the prompts in your optional details and Dear Creator letter will help or hinder your assigned artist. A good shortcut to this is to consider if your prompt can easily be turned into a picture.
Bad example: Jenna and Sally slowly falling in love, lots of angst and UST! [This is great for a story, but what would that look like in art, especially if your artist doesn't do comics?]
Good example: Something a little sad, maybe Jenna looking at Sally longingly when Jenna's not looking, or Jenna riding off into the sunset while Sally watches.

It's a good idea to have several specific art-friendly prompts (such as "Something domestic, like Jenna brushing Sally's hair," "I'd love some bondage with blood play and Sally on the bottom!" or "the girls fighting a dragon") but also to make sure your artists realises those are options.

It's also good to mention what tone and style you like, and what rating you're comfortable with. Consider including colours and settings you like. Is your fandom AU friendly? Mention AUs you like (Pirates! Space! Elizabethan court dress!).

Consider including a link to your fanart tag on tumblr or favourites folder on Deviantart, this could be helpful to your artist as they can use it to get an idea of the type of pictures you like. (Though don't make this your only option, as some artists will find it more useful than others).

Please be careful not to bash art styles or be too demanding. Like you're not going to get the exact story you're thinking of, you're not going to get the exact piece of art you're picturing in your head. If you don't like a certain style, mention that you'd prefer not to get it, but leave it at that.
Bad example: I hate chibis, so don't draw any!
Good example: I prefer not to get chibi-style art.


How do I host art while remaining anon?
The anon period is optional for artists (due to AO3 not getting much art traffic, and art theft being the problem it is), but if you want to play the the anon game too, here's how:

If you decide to post anon, you should probably watermark your picture with made for FemslashEx 2016 and/or with the whole url to the page (post the work without the art, get the url from that, add it to the picture, then edit the work and embed the picture). You can replace that picture with one with your signature after the creators are revealed.

There are two sites that allow easy anon hosting.
Tumblr: Upload the image as private or a draft, and then right click "copy image location" to get the url. There's no way to trace a privately posted picture back to your account. (Make sure you're copying the image for the full-sized version, not the 540px tumblr version. You may have to right-click to a new tab to get the hi-res one).
Imgur: Image and album privacy explained.

To embed, use this code: <img src="yoururl">
Always double check to make sure your picture is showing up properly.


AO3 doesn't allow preview pictures! How do I summarise my art in words?
It has been pointed out that trying to summarise art with words is "the equivalent of having to draw your fic summary out with stick figures." Here are a couple of ideas to help out with that:
1. Include your prompt: Prompt: Jenna and Sally fight the ultimate evil!
2. Flat out describe the picture: Fanart: Jenna and Sally holding hands in the park.
3. Write something fun that alludes to the situation and hooks people in: It's Tuesday, so of course there's a dragon. (You can indicate the pairing and other details using the tags anyway).

Suggestions? Resources of your own? Corrections? Leave them in comments!