AS Afflatus: Issue Seven

Where you can find all published issues of the Advanced Scribes Afflatus, our very own newsletter!
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AS Afflatus: Issue Seven

Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:40 am

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If you are a new reader of the Afflatus, welcome! This magazine is meant to be interactive with our members, meaning submissions, suggestions, and nominations are encouraged! For each contribution to the Afflatus, points will be awarded to the house! Through this magazine, we aim to provide tips and inspiration as well as updates regarding the site. To make a submission, you can do so by using this form or even posting directly to the thread.

Submissions that are meant to be shown for the next issues are: Dear Stag, Featured Writing, & Anonymous Compliments/Critique.

Afflatus Contents: Title Post, Updates, Dear Stag, Writing & Life Tips, Character Interview & Prompt, Member Corner, Featured Writing, Adventure Story, Activity Center and Anonymous Compliments and Critique.

Current Staff/Team Members: Thunderofthedrum, Night Fury, Commander Shepherd, Blacksteel Alchemist, Ichor., DeerInYourHeadlights, Eccedentesiast, Kami, Blue, Meraki, Snow, and Horizon. Here is our team page.
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AS Afflatus - Issue 7 - Updates

Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:40 am

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Events Area: As you guys may have noticed, we have a new Events area of the forum! While we are happy with the variety of events we've had thus far, it does make it hard to organize. Beginning this new year, there will be a designated area for all event threads. Just like we have done so far, there will be sub-boards for each event, however now instead of being located in the related regular area (such as personal writing, roleplaying, or sharing art), they will be under the appropriate year. All 2017 events have now been moved to this new system to set an example for the future.

1x1 Roleplay Competition: If you haven't already read about and signed up for our newest event happening right now, please check out the announcement for more information on how to get involved! Also within this announcement you will find the updated contest schedule which we have also edited into the Welcome and Rules.

New Sorting Quiz: As stated in the announcement, the sorting quiz has been given a HUGE overhaul in hopes of better balancing our four houses. The link is now live but remember - if you take the new quiz, you are committed to the results with no going back. The link has now been added to the most recent announcement, as well as the Welcome and Rules.

Coding Guide: We are also happy to reveal a little coding guide from our Overseers! If BBCode is not your strong point or you have seen some tags you haven't known how to apply, we hope that this guide helps you out with some pointers and good advice. Go check it out here!

Social Media: Thanks to participation in the poll about what social media you guys would like to see Advanced Scribes active on, we now have a Twitter account and a Tumblr! We will be posting more information about these very soon!

New Board Styles: Deer, Eccedentesiast, and Meraki have been working on a lovely gift for all of our great members! If you navigate to your User Control Panel (UCP) and click on the tab labeled "Board preferences", you will now find 4 new options under the dropdown for "My board style". These new board styles are inspired by our awesome four Houses that members have been sorted into. Whether you select based on your House alignment or simply your favorite color, we hope you will enjoy these new fresh looks for the new fresh year!
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AS Afflatus - Issue 7 - Dear Stag

Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:41 am

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There was no Stag Submission for this issue.

Have something you want to submit to The Stag? You can do so here.
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AS Afflatus - Issue 7 - Writing Tips

Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:42 am

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This month's theme is The Muse, the Critic and the Novel Writing Process. To read more in depth, go here.

1. Finding Ideas. This is where the writing muse comes in while you're staring off into space while brainstorming ideas. Like mentioned previously, the muse can be lazy and so the critic has to give the muse a nudge to keep them focused on the task at hand. The critic does not get involved during the brainstorming.

During the brainstorming, the muse searches your memory and imagination for ideas and inspiration. Later, the critic selects and combines the random ideas into a whole while the muse stands by and approves or disapproves. The final idea must satisfy both of them.

2. Planning a Novel. The muse hates planning novels. This is where the critic is in charge. The critic applies the rules of plot to the story while the muse imagines the perfect details. Essentially, the critic makes up with the novel's skeleton while the muse makes up the flesh that hangs onto the bones. The critic will run through character-building checklists while the muse pictures the character as a real person.

Both muse and critic are important and need to be allowed to do what they do best at the right time. Let the writer's muse create and the critic attend to the more logical writing tasks.

3. Writing a Novel. This is where the muse and critic can get into each other's way quite a bit, if allowed. The muse writes the first draft and then the critic revices it. The muse doesn't like being disturbed when writing, so in order to prepare a better environment, allow the critic to prepare the ideal environment by doing such things as taking the phone off the hook, attending to other matters before sitting down to write, making sure the temperature is just right, and so forth. The critic basically has to ensure that nothing can distract or pull the muse away from the writing.

4. Revising a Novel. Revision is an easier process than writing the first draft as it is carried out by the critic. The critic applies the rules of novel writing, as prerviously mentioned. They check for consistent characterization, proper plot progression, as well as spelling, punctuation, and typos. But when revising the language, the muse will be capable of 'hearing' the music in the words and knowing when they are perfect.
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AS Afflatus - Issue 7 - Life Tips

Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:42 am

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This month's issue will focus on How Much Car Can I Afford?. If you have any additional questions, don't hesitate to PM Thunder!


Buying a car can be incredibly daunting. What brands you prefer, what models feel right. Who issued a recall recently? What’s known to have issues before long? Resources like the Kelley Blue Book and Consumer Reports Magazine can be really helpful, as well as just educated yourself online and speaking with trust individuals who have experience. You may learn something you didn’t expect, such as the fact that Lexus is the luxury brand by Toyota and that Acura is the same for Honda!

Once you have gotten an idea of some makes and models you might be interested in, you may start thinking - but what can I afford? Rationally, this question should likely come first, but we all get excited by the idea of a new toy.

When I bought my car last year, every time I walked into a dealership a salesperson would ask the same question - how much do I want to pay each month. While that question IS important, the way they seemed to think it was the ONLY question I should think about was deeply troubling (and irritating!). Paying only $100 each month sounds great, but at what cost? If it’s a 7 year loan with a high interest rate, that soon becomes incredibly unappealing. I would recommend pursuing a loan through your own financial institution or a credit union way before financing through the dealership as I bet you’d get a better interest rate.

Firstly - how much do you have saved for a downpayment? Doing so is a great move because that means you don’t have to get a loan for the full amount - that means fewer payments and less interest accrued than if you were to finance the entire cost. For example, say you have worked hard to save $2000. You can go to your bank or credit union to see what their interest rates are and what size of loan you could be pre-approved for. Don’t be afraid to shop around! If it sounds like another credit union may be able to offer you a better interest rate, go talk to them!

Once you’ve discussed and gotten an idea of where you stand with the financial institutions, please consider this - a long loan isn’t so bad with a house (besides, they cost way more), but you don’t want a 6 year loan for a car. It could need issues or be in a wreck by then, or you may even be wanting to upgrade before that point for whatever reason, like you adopted a Great Dane and suddenly a compact car isn’t such a good fit. Suze Orman, bless her beady little eyes and pointy finger, says to not get a car loan for any longer than 3 years, and I fully agree with this. If that means the payments for your dream car would be too high to afford, then that is too much car for you and you should set your sights a bit lower.

You have your $2000 that you saved. Say your credit union is fine giving you a loan at an acceptable interest rate for 3 years. How much can you afford? For example, say paying off $5000 in that time means payments of $150. That doesn’t sound too bad. If that is feasible, then you can go on your merry little way and look for cars around $6500-maybe $7200, depending on your wiggle room. If you have $500 saved and can only afford a $3000 loan, then okay! If you are doing okay with your current transportation but want to buy something that costs a bit more, then save for a few more months and go from there.

And lastly - never feel pressured by the salespeople. If you feel intimidated going alone, bring a parent or other trusted person who isn’t afraid to say “No, thank you”. If they keep showing you cars above the budget you specifically told them you are working with and trying to upsell you, say “It seems you are not listening to my needs, so I’ll be taking my business elsewhere.” While some car salespeople I dealt with were completely slimey, one was a bit pushy, and one just totally wasn’t listening to what I wanted, I also had better experiences of knowledgeable, patient, and upfront individuals. Mostly the former, but that’s where some patience and courage comes in.

Lastly - ALWAYS pay more than the minimum monthly payment if you can. Even if it’s just by $5. Every little bit helps to wear down that debt, which also means accruing less interest. Plus, it’s a wonderful feeling to pay it off a bit early! (So then you can put that future money towards repairs or an upgrade, yay!)
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AS Afflatus - Issue 7 - Character Interview & Prompt

Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:43 am

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1. Does your character have siblings within their age group? Which one are they closest with?
2. What is your character’s relationship like with their mother?
3. What is your character’s relationship like with their father?
4. Has there been any experience that drastically changed them? How so?
5. What can typically be found in your character’s pockets or purse?
6. Are there any recurring themes in your character’s dreams?
7. What does your character desire most out of life?
9. Is your character bothered by the sight of blood? If so, how badly?
10. Does your character remember names or faces easier?
11. What was your character’s favorite toy as a child?
12. How quick is your character to trust someone else?
13. What does your character think of children?
14. How does your character handle confrontation?
15. What is the worst thing your character has done?
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PROMPT

"It'll be easy. You just have to seduce them."

"You're kidding right? I'm about as seductive as a cabbage."
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AS Afflatus - Issue 7 - Member Corner

Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:43 am

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The Coven - paganism/witchcraft/magick discussion
If you've ever shown interest in the unknown or occult, this club here on AS offers an area for topics relating to or in line with paganism, witchcraft and/or magick. All opinions and views are free game here, witchever your path or stance, even if you have no experience we welcome you to come in and join the discussion! Everyone starts somewhere~


Basic Coding Guide
As mentioned in the updates portion of this issue, a basic coding guide has been created for those who struggle with BBCode or those who wish to better themselves at it!


Bookworms of AS (a book club)
Despite inherently being a writing website, everyone started out on their aspiring path somehow and for many, it was through their love of books. This club is organized to revisit those roots as well as encourage readers to be more active in their endeavors. In accomplishing that, each month there will be a new book voted on by the user-base of AS to read and complete fun activities based on the book whether they be prompts, games, simple discussions, or even discussion questions. It should be known that this is fun and entirely voluntary! Even if you don't have the time or patience to finish the book, you are still entirely welcome to discussions and so long as no arguments are formed, you may share yours opinions here with others.
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AS Afflatus - Issue 7 - Featured Writing

Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:44 am

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How Cruel Is The Golden Rule by morningstar
Hidden text.
Felix hadn't really considered owning a dragon; generally, they were a pet for the rich. Wild, unpredictable, and very expensive to keep. It was not uncommon to head into the business districts of London and see women hanging off their husband's arm, a small dragon on the end of a lead. Often, though, when they grew bigger than their owner, they were left indoors indefinitely. Some properties had massive dragons chained up in the garden.

Dragons never really stopped growing, and, when they got to too large a size, people stopped knowing what to do with them. The older they got, the more they needed to eat, and therefore the cost of their care went up. Most exotic vets refused to treat them when they required more sedative than the average elephant, so private healthcare was often required, which counted up into the thousands.

Naturally, some of the dragons attempted to escape. A common practice that began when they first became popular, and the first dragons started to grow too large, was to clip their wings. It became known that this was the easiest way to stop them flying away - the delicate membranes stretched across their wing bones were what channeled the air. It was seen the same sort of thing one would do to a chicken to stop it flying away. The only difference was a dragon's membrane could not grow back. Small punctures or cuts generally wouldn't do much harm, and as the dragon grew, they'd become so small that they were no longer an issue.

Cutting their wings to ribbons?
x marry me? pt. 1 & 2 by ironic
Hidden text.
Elian woke to sunlight streaming through the drapes of his apartment, illuminating the dust that wafted lazily in the air and the human-like form curled up on the bed. Blinking bleary eyes open to the sunlight and yawning, still under the cover of sheets piled sloppily on top of one another, the blonde let himself grow accustomed to the partially muted bustle of New York’s streets. Not a minute later, however, a cold dread sunk in his chest and the young man was scrambling up in his bed, further tangling himself in the sheets before he ended up fumbling out and onto the decidedly cold floor of his studio apartment. Glancing at the alarm clock on his nightstand, Elian found himself staring blankly into a blinking “12:00” - the number taunting him as he groaned and cursed. Tearing an arm out from within the cocoon of blankets, he grabbed at his phone off the table and stared in remote horror as the time came to light before his eyes. He was late. He was so very fucking late.

“Fuck. Shit. Damn.” He cursed consecutively as he sprung from the bed and darted across the room to the closet, grabbing a suit and throwing it on foregoing the shower he had planned. Haphazardly strewing on a black tie and running a hand through his moderate case of bedhead as if it would fix the situation, Elian made his way through the apartment, rushing to the doorway, slipping on shoes before fleeing briefcase in tow.

He was so fucking late.
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AS Afflatus - Issue 7 - Activity Center

Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:44 am

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Instructions: Use the word bank of staff names provided. Type up your answers in the format of:

1) name
2) name

and so forth. PM your answers to thundreofthedrum. Make sure the subject line of the message is: TRIVIA

You get ONE try. Answers will be revealed at the end of the month so you have until then to submit. Each correct answer earns FIVE points towards your house! Just trying in itself earns TEN points. That means that you can earn up to 75 points towards your house in this one activity. Due to open resorting, points will not be tallied towards house totals until the end of the resorting period.
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AS Afflatus - Issue 7 - Anon Compliments & Critiques

Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:45 am

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No anonymous compliments were submitted for this issue.

No anonymous critiques were submitted for the previous issue. No piece was submitted for critique.
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