Louden Singletree Volunteer Orientation for the Spring Edition 2015

What is a blind reading?

A blind reading removes all information about the author from a work that is to be considered so as to remove any bias the volunteer might have regarding the age, gender, or professional position of the author (e.g.: faculty or staff). By removing this bias, it forces the volunteer to focus on the work itself and to judge its content accordingly.


How does the process work?

Volunteers will begin to receive works to consider during the Christmas break, likely within a few days after the last day for submissions, in order to give the webmaster time to sort through and organize who is to receive what and when. All communication will be done via the email address that the volunteer provided.

Each piece will be sent to three different volunteers. If at least two readers rate a piece YES, then it moves on to a second round of consideration, which is the editorial board’s round. Any and all comments that are made by the volunteers on each piece will only be seen by one member of the editorial board – the webmaster (Valerie).

Volunteers may receive up to three pieces to read and consider at one time. Responses are expected back within five days. Volunteers who respond quicker will have the opportunity to review more pieces than others. Responses should only be YES or NO. If you think that a piece is a MAYBE, say YES, and it may be kept or eliminated later in an additional round of reading.


Criteria for Judging Literature

DO NOT base your judgements of a piece on whether or not you like it. While you are allowed to like a work that you say YES to, it should not in any way be the basis for your decision. Also, DO NOT judge a work based on your own personal bias against its genre, content, or style (e.g.: romance, science fiction, or poems that rhyme vs don’t rhyme).

Pieces that receive a YES will:

  • Be well written and polished
  • Have correct spelling, punctuation and grammar (one or two spelling errors should not turn a YES into a NO)
  • If it is a story, it should have a strong story line, cohesive plot, and good structure
  • Do not say YES to a work that you think could be good with further editing. All works that receive a YES should be ready for publication.

Pieces that receive a NO will:

  • Be poorly written
  • Have spelling errors, lack of punctuation or appropriate grammar
  • If it is a story, it will have a weak story line, lack of continuity, appear clichéd

Feedback

Volunteer feedback should include a YES or NO. Please clearly indicate which pieces have received what decision (i.e.: include the title of the work). Also, please include a brief explanation for your decision. This can be in point form (please provide a minimum of 3 points). This is not as necessary for works that receive a YES, but should be included for works that receive a NO. Please remember that “I liked it” or “I didn’t like it” are not sufficient explanations. Statements like, “I didn’t like it because the plot was convoluted” or “the theme was poorly handled” are more appropriate explanations.


Criteria for Judging Visual Arts

DO NOT base your judgements of a piece on whether or not you like it. While you are allowed to like a work that you say YES to, it should not in any way be the basis for your decision. Also, DO NOT judge a work based on your own personal bias against its medium (e.g.: drawing, painting, photography).

Pieces that receive a YES will:

  • Be a polished, finished product according to its medium ie: drawing, painting, etc.
  • Display originality
  • Have striking composition; please consider if the piece has effective/purposeful lighting, successful use of colour or lack of, and how space is used.
  • Do not say YES to a work that you think could be good with further work.
  • All works that receive a YES should be ready for publication.
Pieces that receive a NO will:
 
  • Be poorly or hastily composed
  • Appear unfinished (please pay close attention to whether or not a piece is artistically unfinished)
  • Appear clichéd

Visual Arts Volunteers please also see “Volunteer Feedback” above.


Can I submit if I am a reader?

Absolutely! We whole heartedly encourage you to submit your work, so long as it meets the submission guidelines as outlined on the Louden website. Be reminded that the final day for submissions is December 18 at 11:59 PM. No late submissions will be accepted.


Questions

Do you have any questions about the reading process that haven’t already been covered? If you have ANY QUESTIONS at all during the reading process, please DO NOT hesitate to ask. All questions can be directed to Valerie or Sasha at the Louden email: louden.singletree@ufv.ca.

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