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2017 Anthology Theme Suggestions

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Thread will open for theme suggestions on July 13th, 2016 @ approximately 4 a.m. EST time and will close on July 31st, 2016 @ approximately 11:59 p.m EST. The following are this years theme suggestion guidelines.

  • Each member can suggest up to 5 themes
  • All theme suggestions can be no more than 4 words (any theme suggestion going over this will be disqualified). This is especially important as there will be TWO themes on each anthology banner, and we simply will not have room for long themes.
  • Suggested themes can NOT be a previously used theme. You can check the list of past themes, here.
  • Themes should have a wide range of interpretations
  • Theme suggestions posted on the blog entry do not count. You must post your suggestions in the theme suggestion thread.
  • Please do not number, letter, bullet point, or any other "lists" as it makes it more difficult when I'm compiling the themes.
  • Please do not add anything to each line other than the theme suggestion. If you would like to explain your themes, ONLY do it below your entire list of suggestions. However, any descriptions or explanations will NOT be copied over into the compiled list that will be used to narrow the theme suggestions down.
  • Your "list" should look as follows: (I will use previous themes as an example)

    Roll The Dice
    Chain Reaction
    Full Circle

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  • 3 weeks later...

Life Must Go On

Let It Go


Make It Right

Lover Disaster


Okay, these are what I got finally. And there is not much to explain. Because these are simple to understand according to one's POV. But I suggest the first one 'Life Must Go On' as a Poetry Anthology...

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If This Then That

Private Places / Secret Spaces

The Hard Fall

I Could Call You

The Thing Between Us


If This Then That – Some may know this by the abbreviation IFTTT, a web-based service allowing users to create conditional statements (recipes) with regards to other web services. The direction is self-explanatory really and just means, “If this happens then do that.” We operate under such directions all the time. We might be taught a truism or we might have learned from trial and error on our own. If your hand goes into the fire then pull it out. If your helmet springs a leak in space then find that hole. If you go chasing after the bad boy then your reputation will be ruined. Do we pay attention? Needless to say, not always. What do your characters do? What happens to them as a result of their action?


This is also a good vehicle for a cause-and-effect story. A character walks down a sidewalk and slips on an acorn, and grabs the nearest person to him; what happens next? The initial cause could be anything that prompts your cast of characters to respond to it. How they respond is what makes your story interesting.


Private Places / Secret Spaces – We all either have or desire these private--secret—quarters we can escape to. They can be either physical or metaphysical—all in your head—but what happens when those places and spaces are infringed upon? Where does your character go for a respite? Is it the garden, a cubby under the stairs or is it that hole out in the shed that leads someplace no one ever imagined? It’s up to you whether entry is by invitation, accidental or forced.


Don’t be limited in your ideas, a secret space can also mean a place to hide something valuable. What is your character trying to hide? Is the object large or small? Magical or mundane? Is the thing to be hidden valuable or only valuable to your character? That’s your story to tell.


The Hard Fall – Oh my! I’m sure more than a few have felt the effects of this. But what does it have to do with your character? Is it just that they’ve fallen deeply, madly and insatiably in love only to be rebutted, refused and denied? Tell us about it. Perhaps you’d rather have your character literally fall on someone hard and tell us where that leads. Maybe your character is knocked down—accidentally or on purpose—but when they get up are they angry, afraid or something else? What happens? I want to know, won’t you say?


I Could Call You – Here is the sweet-heart deal: The shy guy who is nonetheless brave enough to make the suggestion and all the while hopes… hopes… to hear the right answer while waiting for a reply.


Here is the hard sell: The confident and swaggering character who throws those words out like a challenge and then waits to be convinced that he should make the call.


Here is another thought: Authors have excellent imaginations.


The Thing Between Us – Is there a thing between your characters or is there a thing between them? Are your characters too much alike to allow a good thing to happen or is someone else getting in the way? Those are two obvious interpretations of the theme. But, maybe, it’s worth looking further afield for inspiration. There are many obstacles that come between people. Some are ephemeral—like an argument that peters out, for instance—and some are very concrete—like the wall between two prison cells. Might your characters benefit from getting their luggage mixed up at the airport? There’s no hard or fast rule that says strife is the only option you have available to you. I encourage you to look up the definition of the word “thing” because you can go anywhere and everywhere with your story… “Thing" stands in for a lot of things. You make the story possible.

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