The way we run hd_holidays is changing! Due to both the age of the fest (it'll be two years and four rounds this winter!), the shifting face of fandom, and the mods' desire to maintain their sanity, we are tightening down the hatches. Last winter's fest was absolutely amazing, but there were a record number of drop-outs, still too many fics with major problems, and just far too much for the mods to deal with on a day-to-day basis. The numbers are getting overwhelming, and trends in fandom seem to indicate people would like fewer fics posted a day. We agree!
We will be limiting the size of the fest to somewhere between 60 and 80 participants. Allowing for the standard number of drop-outs, this will make for two fic or art posts a day for a month, with the occasional three post day.
Sign-ups will no longer be on a first-come, first-served basis. There will be a two-fold system in determining who will be able to participate in the fest, much like Smutmas used in its final year. We will be using a system of reserved places for veteran participants and lottery spots for new or one-time participants.
Any participant who has done the fest two times or more (so first round counts, even though I wasn't the mod of that one), and turned in a submission in good time (not at the eleventh hour) that was not returned to the writer/artist for major rewrites/revisions is eligible for a reserved spot if they want one. Those participants who may have done the fest more than once but had fic with major problems, whether they were grammatical or had to do with the story/art not fitting the prompt, will need to enter the lottery. Please contact the mods if you are unsure if you are included in this. (minor grammar fixes = not major rewrites)
Any writer or artist who did a pinch hit for me (rounds two or three) and would like a reserved spot is entitled to one – you deserve some additional form of thanks for stepping in, and this is it!
Reserved spots are basically for those participants the mods can trust not to drop out, and turn in fic/art on time without major problems. Please only take a reserved spot if you are sure you can make the commitment. We will open up the reservations in July.
All others interested in participating will need to enter the lottery, whether you've only done the fest once or never before. We are looking to have about 40%-50% of participant slots filled by lottery candidates, and the number of lottery spots for writers and artists will be contingent upon the number of reserved spots taken. No one is excluded from entering the lottery except for those who dropped out of the previous round.
We realize some may be disappointed by not getting to participate in this round of H/D Holidays, however this is a move we feel is necessary to keep the fest under control.
Please ask any questions you may have in either the comments or by email (hdhols@gmail). We're happy to clarify the new policy and address specific people – we'll be formulating the specifics, particularly the official cap number, over the next few months, and user input is essential!