FAQ

Why is it called sub-Q?

“sub-Q” is medical shorthand for subcutaneous–e.g. injections to be given under the skin but not quite in the muscle. It’s a term that’s been coming up a lot.

 

How do you calculate word count?

We define word count “each word of prose in each unique sentence that may appear before a reader. (Includes alternate endings, multiple choice, etc.)” If dispute arises about what constitutes a “word,” we will resolve it in good faith.

Calculating words of prose is no easy feat! And our current methods get us only a best estimate. Twine’s word count tool does include any code contained in passages, but fortunately it’s a pretty good ballpark. We have an in-house script for parsing prose from a Twine-generated HTML, and we find it reduces the count about 10% (depending code quantity). Sequitur/NotBrunoAgain has provided a quick-and-dirty estimator for Inform.

 

Will you consider my story that’s longer than 5000 words? If budget is a concern, I’m willing to accept less than $0.06 USD per word.

It’s kind of you to be willing to accept a flat rate for the work! However we are observing strict per-word payment guidelines in the hope of one day becoming an SFWA-qualifying market. We also prefer bite-sized works that can lure new readers to IF. For this reason our preferred word count for original work is about 3500.

We have made exceptions, but they’re tough on our budget.

 

Will stories be paywalled?

No. Paying members get sneak peeks, bonus content, achievements, and other rewards. But stories stay free and open.

 

How can I support sub-Q?

Buy a membership. It helps us sleep at night. It lets us plan for the future. And there are rewards.

If you’re interested, we also have one sponsorship per month.

 

How do I get started in Twine?

Good to hear you’re interested in creating! (For what it’s worth, we’re very interested in stories created with tools other than Twine, too.) Here are some resources for Twine 2–the most recent version as of this writing:

 

Do I have to use a certain stylesheet?

Not at all. Feel free to use the style that makes the most sense for your story.

 

Why do you call second person POV a “hard sell”?

It’s true that second person seems to be the most popular POV for IF, and we respect and honor IF’s history.

At the same time, one of our goals is to bring new readers to the medium, and second person POV outside of IF is less common. It can be tough on a newcomer who is more accustomed to slipping into the perspective of a well-defined, unique main character than to visualizing themself personally as the protagonist.

We respect what has worked for IF, but we want to explore further. Some readers have no trouble accepting that *they* are the swashbuckling space pirate, but others do!

 

I subscribed to the newsletter. Am I awesome?

Yes, extremely so. But you know that.

 

Why isn’t there more Inform7, TADS, and parser-based fiction here?

We don’t receive many of those submissions. But we want them. Please send more.