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2017 AO3 Sub-collection
2017 AO3 Tagset
AO3 Parent Collection

2017 Schedule
Please refer to the collection for the exact times.

Nominations open: July 9
Nominations close: July 23
Sign-ups open: July 28
Sign-ups close: August 11
Works due: September 30
Works revealed: October 5 (8:00PM EDT)
Creators revealed: October 12 (8:00PM EDT)
FAQ

What's this about?
The Darkest Night is an exchange fest celebrating dark themes in fanworks. If you've participated in exchanges like Yuletide, you'll be familiar with the concept. If not, here's a (very!) brief rundown: You sign up with a list of fandoms and characters to create a fanwork (either fanart or fanfic) for another person, and someone else will do the same for you. This exchange is run on Archive of Our Own.

What is exchanged?
You can create fanfic or fanart for this exchange. The minimum requirements:
  • Fanfic: 500 words or more
  • Fanart: A cleaned-up sketch on unlined paper
Interesting! What fandoms are eligible?
We welcome all fandoms, including Original Work. For RPF, there are a few limitations:
  • All characters in modern-era RPF must be over 18
  • No non-famous family or friends of RPF people may be used in the fanwork
  • RPF nominations can be removed at the request of the person in question
Mods reserve the right to approve or disapprove fandoms. This will only happen if a fandom breaks these rules or is in extremely poor taste (e.g. fic about Hitler).

How does it work?
There are three main phases for exchanges like this: nominations, sign-ups, and posting.
  1. Nominations
    • This is when you nominate the fandoms, characters, and themes you'd like to see in the fest.
    • You may nominate 6 fandoms total, and 5 characters or groups of characters per fandom. You may also nominate 10 free-form tags.
    • Character groups are for when you want a group of characters interacting; you request it in the format of Group: [Character 1] & [Character 2] (for platonic relationships) or Group: [Character 1]/[Character 2] (for ships).
  2. Sign-ups
    • This is when you sign up with your requests and offers.
    • You can request 4-10 fandoms, with 1-10 characters or groups per fandom, as well as 2-20 free-form tags per fandom. You can also choose your medium per fandom requested: fanfiction, fanart, or both.
    • Offers work the same way: 4-10 fandoms, 1-10 characters or groups per fandom, and 2-20 free-form tags per fandom. You can choose to offer either fanfiction, fanart, or both, but make sure it's something you're comfortable creating for all fandoms you offer.
    • We use OR matching, meaning that you will be matched with someone who requested at least one of the fandoms (and characters/tags from that fandom), but not necessarily all fandoms, characters, or tags that you offered.
  3. Posting
    • When you're done creating your fanwork, you post it on AO3. Click here to learn how to post to AO3.
    • On October 5, the works will be revealed. All works will be anonymous for a week. On October 12, creators will be revealed.
How do you define "dark themes"?
We're defining dark themes as "anything that deals with disturbing, violent, and/or depressing themes."

What if I can't complete my assignment?
Please default ASAP so we can find a pinch-hit for your recipient. There are no default penalties for this fest.

What's a pinch-hit?
When a participant can't be matched or is defaulted upon, they'll be assigned to a volunteer familiar with a requested fandom who will create a fanwork for them.

I have another question.
Please either post them here (anon commenting is on) or email us at darkestnightfest@gmail.com. We'll get back to you within 24 hours.

Nominations
You may nominate 6 fandoms, with 5 characters/groups in each, and 10 tags total. Fandoms There is no rarity requirement regarding which fandoms are eligible. RPF, Crossover Fandoms, and Original Works are all allowed. Non-traditional fandoms such as songs, poetry, anthropomorphism, etc. are allowed. Fan-created fandoms based on existing fandoms will be decided on a case-by-case basis.

If you are nominating a fandom that contains multiple versions of characters, or has been known to cause issues in exchange tagsets, then please let us know if and why you think the fandoms should be combined or separated.

Characters & Groups
You can nominate individual characters or groups of characters. To nominate individual characters, just use the character's name. If your character has multiple versions across fandoms, please specify the fandom in parentheses after their name. If you'd like to nominate a group, please use the format group: Character A & Character B (platonic relationships) or Group: Character A/Character B (for ships). All characters nominated in a group must be from the same fandom; otherwise, nominate them under Crossover Fandoms. If the group is a Crossover Fandom, please put each fandom in parentheses after each character's name. Rule 63 versions of characters are allowed; please use the format Female Character A or Male Character B. See the examples below:
  • Momomiya Ichigo
  • Steve Rogers (MCU)
  • Female Sparrow Hood
  • group: Third Doctor & Sara Jane Smith
  • group: Charles Xavier (X-Men Movies) & Zordon (Power Rangers)
  • group: Harry Potter/Draco Malfoy
Tags
You can nominate up to 10 tags total. These can be tropes, kinks, settings, etc. They should be related to dark themes in fic/art or something that can be easily applied to dark themes. We will be asking the community to help determine when to combine related tags together, so please keep an eye on the Dreamwidth community.

Sign-ups
You can request 4-10 fandoms, with 1-10 characters or groups per fandom, as well as 2-20 free-form tags per fandom. You can also choose your medium per fandom requested: fanfiction, fanart, or both. Offers work the same way: 4-10 fandoms, 1-10 characters or groups per fandom, and 2-20 free-form tags per fandom. You can choose to offer either fanfiction, fanart, or both, but make sure it's something you're comfortable creating for all fandoms you offer. We use OR matching, meaning that you will be matched with someone who requested at least one of the fandoms (and characters/tags from that fandom), but not necessarily all fandoms, characters, or tags that you offered.

Pinch-Hits
Pinch-hits will be posted to the community.

DNWs
DNWs - do-not-wants - are things you absolutely don't want to be in your art or fic. If you have something you feel strongly about, please put it in your AO3 sign-up. (And please be as specific as possible.) In this exchange, we will be enforcing DNWs that are in the AO3 sign-up, so if your artist or writer crosses a line you explicitly stated, you will go out as a pinch hit and receive a new gift. Please keep in mind that this can only be enforced if your DNWs are a part of your AO3 sign-up; otherwise, there's no guarantee your creator will see them.


Any other questions? Ask us in the comments, or email darkestnightfest@gmail.com.

Date: 2016-07-12 03:46 am (UTC)
john_egbert: Delicious. ((FNV) Yes Man *Wild Card*)
From: [personal profile] john_egbert
Awesome, this looks very exciting! One question on the matching: how does the OR work in relation to the freeform? Say, for example, I request the character Hero McValorface and the 'torture' freeform--am I guaranteed to get someone who's okay with writing torture, or might I be paired to a person who offered Hero McValorface and the freeforms 'demons' and 'apocalypse'?

(Also, serious love for your icon choice.)

Date: 2016-07-13 02:21 am (UTC)
john_egbert: No grave can hold my body. ((FNV) Courier Six *Rise*)
From: [personal profile] john_egbert
Cool, thank you! That's reassuring.

Date: 2016-07-12 03:52 am (UTC)
theladyscribe: Etta Place and Butch Cassidy laughing. (Default)
From: [personal profile] theladyscribe
I am a little confused about character groups. If I nominate (and later request) three characters but don't nominate/request them as a group, does that mean that my writer cannot include all three in whatever they write for me? Or does that simply mean there's no guarantee that they'll use all three?

Date: 2016-07-12 12:54 pm (UTC)
hellkitty: (Default)
From: [personal profile] hellkitty
Will there be something like Treats, for people who want to participate that way?

Date: 2016-10-03 04:27 am (UTC)
reeby10: (Default)
From: [personal profile] reeby10
For treats, is there going to be a separate collection or should we just submit to the main collection and indicate in the notes that it's a treat?

Date: 2016-10-03 09:49 pm (UTC)
reeby10: (Default)
From: [personal profile] reeby10
Great, thank you!

Date: 2016-07-19 04:28 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Can we make multiple requests from the same fandom, if the character & freeforms parts are different? For example:

Request 1: Original Work; Alien & Alien; Body Horror, Medical Experimentation

Request 2: Original Work; Twin Sister & Twin Sister; Incest, Fpreg

Date: 2016-07-19 04:47 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
I'm also wondering this!

Perhaps if the minimum number of unique fandoms is met, the rest of the request slots could be used for duplicate fandoms with different characters and different freeforms?

Date: 2016-07-19 08:47 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Yeah, in SmutSwap they required at least three unique fandoms, then the rest of the slots could go to duplicates in those fandoms with other characters. It helps with matching too, because people can make more requests/offers.

Date: 2016-07-21 08:24 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Any thoughts on this, mods? It would be really handy, especially for people who want two different relationships in the same fandom with really different tags, or things like gen vs ships in the same fandom, or even just crossovers.

Date: 2016-07-22 06:02 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
No problem, mod, thanks for getting back to us! Hope all is well.

Date: 2016-07-20 06:01 pm (UTC)
cerberusia: (Default)
From: [personal profile] cerberusia
Would you like a couple of pimping banners? I made two just now:


[http://i65.tinypic.com/rljm1j.jpg]


[http://i63.tinypic.com/2wpnxon.jpg]

Date: 2016-07-24 01:51 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Hello mods, I've got a question. 10 freeform tags seem really few, with such a big tagset. Can we get to request and offer 20 freeform tags (or 40, if the optional tags section is included in the signup form too)? It would make to match requests and offers so much easier.

In the event you wonder whether it's possible, smut swap allowed up to 40, 20 freeform tags + 20 optional freeform tags, so it's doable. :)

Date: 2016-07-26 05:46 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Are we allowed to give our matchee the option to write Origfic rather than any of our specified fandoms or do the works have to be in specified fandoms?

Date: 2016-07-26 10:54 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Not a mod, but since original work is one of the "fandoms" nominated, if your recipient requests it, you can write them that for them.

Is it too late to sign up?

Date: 2016-08-21 05:44 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] jazitupart
I know the deadline was the 12th, but if you need another artist for any fandom, I would like to participate! I was told about it and totally forgot to sign up.

Date: 2017-07-18 01:21 am (UTC)
gunpowderandlove: Drawing of blue headphones with colorful stripes coming out. In white letters, it says "winged words" with white wings. (Default)
From: [personal profile] gunpowderandlove
Since this exchange has multiple types of fanwork allowed, I am wondering if you would consider allowing podfic or if it is just fanfic and fanart?

Date: 2017-07-25 09:03 pm (UTC)
thesleepingsatellite: (Default)
From: [personal profile] thesleepingsatellite
Can I request the same fandom more than once, for different sets of characters and freeform tags?

ETA: Oh, wait, I noticed that you answered this with a yes (with caveats) up page. Thanks!
Edited (found the answer) Date: 2017-07-25 09:05 pm (UTC)

Date: 2017-07-29 11:46 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Hello mod, thanks for adding the link to the collection. However, I think that you should link to this year collection instead of the parent collection, if you don't want treaters accidentally posting the treats to the wrong (revealed) collection during the writing period.

Date: 2017-07-30 07:50 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Much better! But I think it would be even better if you start the link with the AO3 word as well. :)

Date: 2017-08-11 08:47 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
A very recent signup requests a group ship that has a / in it, but then insists on it being platonic. Are you going to be checking for that sort of thing and asking for it to be fixed?

Date: 2017-08-12 10:55 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Different anon, but I think they mean the Rick and Morty signup that requests Rick/Summer but says "no incest". They're related.

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darkestnightex: (Default)
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