But as Grandpa said when the boys got to Santa Carla: Rules! We've got some rules around here. These rules may be updated periodically based on lessons learned so please read them again before you participate as a Fresh Voice even if you have read them before.
- Unpublished: The first criteria is that a Fresh Voice must be unpublished. But what does that even mean anymore? For our purposes please use the following definition of unpublished for nominating yourself or others: not published by a major publishing house, nor by a magazine with significant circulation (over 100,000), nor through self-publication with over 1,000 units in sales. Fair enough? Meanwhile, preference will be given to talented writers with no publication experience at all, excluding publication to their own website or blog.
- Nice Matters: In its darkest moments this blog has maybe a PG-rating and most of the time we're more G-rated than a Disney film. If you are invited to be profiled as a Fresh Voice please avoid using vulgar language or it will be bleeped before publication. You are free to link to any of your own writing that you want to, but it would also be polite to warn our readers if the linked item is racy or NSFW (not safe for work). This rule also applies to anyone who wants to comment on a Fresh Voices post. Be nice or be deleted.
- Pay It Forward: Becoming a Fresh Voice means joining a group with other aspiring writers and we can all use support from each other. In practical terms this means that you will commit to promoting the link for future Fresh Voices at least once on Fridays - through a tweet, blog post, Facebook update, whatever. An easy link to remember is http://tinyurl.com/fvfriday - that way you don't have to find the new Fresh Voice link. This way we can create a snowball and some exposure. Exposure may lead to interest, and interest may lead to someone coming along and reading YOUR interview and wanting to know more. It's just a big circle of happy.
- There Will Be More Rules: Having spent many years as a bureaucrat I can tell you that this rule will keep getting bumped down because there will always have to be more rules. Because as the Bureaucratic Rule from the Notorious ADB goes: There's a reason, there's ALWAYS a reason... (Usually it's someone taking advantage and thus messing it up for everyone else.)
Notes: Updated on 4/18/10 to include new rule #3 Pay it Forward.