Upcoming Changes to Foil & Phaser Workshops

Hello everyone.

This message is to inform you of some of the changes that will be happening to Foil & Phaser workshops in 2014.

I’ve worked at a few different volunteer positions and they’ve always had the same problem. While people are often enthusiastic and ready to work when they sign up, all too soon the demands of life start to weigh on them and they drift away. Especially on a project like this that can be fun but a lot of hard work, it’s easy to find excuses not to do it. Everyone wants to play with the kittens, but no one wants to clean out the litterbox.

Consequently, the extended writers workshop that I originally intended to run continuously will close after this round of submissions. A number of you who participated were very prompt with your submissions and generous with your time in commenting on other’s work. Others, unfortunately, have disappeared without a trace.

Going forward, all workshops will consist of one round of submissions only. Participants will be required to sign up for each round. Priority will be given to those who have contributed to workshops in the past, while new members will be required to critique other’s work before they will have their work reviewed. Everyone will receive a schedule at the beginning of the workshop and one email reminder a week before their submission is due. If anyone fails to submit on time without a valid reason, it will be assumed that they are no longer interested.

These changes are necessary to maintain fairness for those members of the group who give their time and effort freely in expectation that others will do the same. Also, the less time I have to spend curating and chasing after people, the more time I have to work at making the site better and coming up with new projects. Some of the workshops will be private to maintain product viability for professionals or to engender a nurturing environment for new writers, but others will have their products published, either serialized on the blog or as an ebook. There has been a tremendous response to our NaNoWriMo alternative project, so if all goes well, we will be repeating that format again early next year.

Participants in the NaNoWriMo workshop should check the site regularly as new finished stories will be going up in coming few weeks for you to read and critique (and keep sending in your word counts). For all those who are participating in the Writers Workshop, please check the schedule to see when your submission is due, or contact me at foilandphaser@gmail.com. For everyone who was working on the collaboration, the full text is up. Please make any edits to your section or comments on other’s parts before the posted deadlines.

Foil & Phaser will shut down for the last two weeks of the year, so all projects should be wrapped up before December 15th. Watch for an announcement shortly before the new year about upcoming opportunities with Foil & Phaser.

Thank you to everyone for your hard work,


This is the home of the Foil & Phaser writers workshop, a spin-off community website for fans of the Sword & Laser book club and podcast who want to develop their writing skills.

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One comment on “Upcoming Changes to Foil & Phaser Workshops
  1. pauljgies says:

    Alas, this is the way of the Internet. And of NaNoWriMo. My current story was started as a sort of SloNoWriMos, only committing to 500 words a day, and approximately two bajillion people thought that was such a great idea that they jumped right in and started writing. Two weeks later, approximately two bajillion minus two of them had dropped out. Then my girlfriend got the flu and she stopped posting. I’m so caught up I have to make myself stop to do the work I actually get paid for.

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Divide and Conquer: A collection of short stories from the workshops of Foil & Phaser for your Kindle or ePub reader.
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November 2013
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