Storytelling - Why Cant I Get in?
THE DEEP CATACOMBS - Maybe it’s the fame, or maybe it’s the attractive trophy
on your lookup, or maybe it’s the prize: 2000 Neopoints and a paint brush, but
most of us creative Neopians have one thing in common – everyone wants to get
their parts accepted into the Storytelling Competition. Most of us also have
another thing in common – no matter how often you enter, your parts are never
accepted! Am I right or am I right? True, I’ve only been accepted into the Storytelling
Competition once, but once is still enough to know what Neopets is looking for
in an entree, and I’m here to tell you what you can do to raise your chances
of being accepted... Oh, and do bear with me if my strategies don’t work.
1. The Basics
Now there are a few things that each and every accepted entree have in them.
Many people don’t know these things and they’re crucial for getting accepted.
Firstly, it is only supposed to be a PART of the story, not the whole thing.
Yes, I know it’s silly and you’re all probably rolling your eyes at me saying
everyone knows that because it’s written right on the Storytelling page, but
I know a good number of people who have tried entering a whole story time and
time again, only to find out that they only need a paragraph of the story to
Second, just missing a few text things like putting an ellipsis at the beginning
and end of your paragraph to show that is was continued can affect whether or
not your part will get accepted. To prevent these things, reread your entrees
several times over, just to make absolutely sure.
2. WaChe yoRe SpeeLing!!
For those who couldn’t read the tittle of number 2, it was meant to say “Watch
Your Spelling!!”. Now I know people aren’t going to make mistakes like that
in their text, but one too many errors can cost you a trophy! Most people reread
their entrees, but others rush through it hoping that they’ll press “Submit
Query” before the next person gets chosen. Now these people usually have their
fingers slip or accidentally press Caps Lock, making their text next to impossible
to read. Also, if you don’t know how to spell a word, don’t guess! Look it up
in the dictionary or type it into your Spell-check on your Word program,
as it may just save your entree. Of course, Neopets will make the occasional
correction if they like the main idea of your entree enough, so don’t freak
out too much if you suddenly realize you made one spelling mistake after pressing
the Submit button.
3. Would You Want to Read it?
Now most everyone who reads this tittle will immediately say: “Of course I’d
wanna read it! That’s why I’m entering, isn’t it?” But unfortunately that’s
just your ego talking most of the time. If you worked hard on something, you’re
obviously going to feel a sense of pride about it, but if you really want to
know if it’s worth entering, look at it from someone else’s point of view. To
do this, you may actually want to send your paragraph to someone else and have
him or her rate it for you. Either way the person will be looking for answers
to the same questions.
Firstly, is it funny? I’ve read through many an entree and ALL of them have
at least something funny in it! Whether it’s a downright in-your-face joke or
the way a character acts, Neopets likes it to be humorous.
Next, is it interesting? Now that phrase can be a different answer to most
everyone, but in general it means the same thing. Think back to your what your
English teacher taught you in your LA class and use some of what you learned.
Don’t go using all simple sentences with no adjectives whatsoever. Paying attention
to this point can change a sentence like: “Link was a Lupe who lived in Meridell
and fought because it was his destiny.” to: “In a land far away called Meridell,
where many a great hero thrived, lived Link, a powerful Lupe with a silky emerald
green coat, fighting the evils and dangers of Neopia as it had been prophesized
by many a seer. Most of you who read that would immediately notice that example
was completely plucked from a video game, but more importantly, you’ll notice
how much more interesting the second sentence is than the first. So next time
you write something, give it an edge to it and add more advanced vocabulary
and adjectives. It’ll make it interesting, and as an added bonus, it’ll make
you look smarter.
4. Stick to the Story Line
Usually Neopets will start the story with an almost obvious purpose to it.
It will generally tell you if they want you to make the story a comedy, or something
scary. Sometimes they will leave you with a question you need to answer or an
incomplete phrase, and once in a while they will even have a clear mission laid
out for you.
Take Story 118 for example. Two Neopets get locked in Eliv Thade’s castle,
and from there the story is pretty obvious. The two Neopets’ mission is clearly
to get out of the castle, and so if they’re in Eliv Thade’s castle they’re almost
surely going to meet up with him some time in the story. And knowing Eliv Thade,
he’s going to make them solve anagrams to get out, and if you know his history,
he’ll almost surely make the friends solve the puzzle that drove him insane
and eventually killed him.
Well, I hope that my little guide helped you and that in the future you too
will experience the joys of receiving a handsome trophy for your lookup, 2000
Neopoints, a rare paint brush, and best of all, all the bragging rights you
could ever want!
Author’s Note: These strategies for succeeding in the Storytelling Contest
are merely what I’ve noticed through all the different stories. If you disagree
with my article, (or are thrilled with the fact that it helped you in your writing
skills) feel free to Neomail me with your questions, comments, or complaints.
But for the most part, I feel I was truthful with my article, and though I’ve
only been accepted into the Storytelling contest once, I believe these tips
are relatively helpful.