Category Archives: Faire Stories

Explorations, event reports, personal musings, posts about the Faire.

The very last chance to enter the Fantasy Faire Competitions!

Palace of Tears, designed by Rynn Verwood, photographed by Wildstar Beaumont
Palace of Tears, setting for the second stage of the Fantasy Faire Hunt, designed by Rynn Verwood, photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

This year we have been running two contests – one for Photographs of the Faire, and a Story Story/Poetry competition too. Both these contests will close at midnight today (May 31st).

In the Photographic Competition, we are looking for the photographs that best capture the spirit of the sims – and the winners will be included in a calendar (with credits for the photographers) that will be created in real life using Cafe Presse and sold to raise money for Relay for Life. So this year, people really will be able to take the Faire home with them – and share it with their friends and family too!

You can find full details of the competition here (and note that the deadline was extended from May 11th – May 31st).

Fairelands Junction, designed by Saiyge Lotus and photographed by Wildstar Beaumont
Fairelands Junction, designed by Saiyge Lotus and photographed by Wildstar Beaumont

For the short story/poetry competition, the top entries will be published in the summer issue of Prim Perfect magazine, coming out in September 2014.

You story/poem can focus on one region – Sanctum, or Hopes Horizon or Heavenslough, for example – and ignore all the others. Or you might use the juxtaposition of two regions, or even draw on more of the Fairelands, as a whole vast realm, perhaps surrounding an inland sea. It’s up to you. And your story or poem can be sad or happy, wise or witty. It can make us laugh, cry, gasp, nod with agreement … or do all of these things by turns.

But we must have it by midnight today!

You can find full details of the competition here,

The Faire Goes On…

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I’m sitting on the quarterdeck of the Fairechylde as I write this, moored at the top of Hope’s Horizon with an amazing view out over the Fairelands. And it’s quiet, so I can really crank up my draw distance and see everything the Grid will let me see. It is a sight both wondrous and humbling, to see the scale of what I’ve had the enormous privilege of contributing to. By the time the Fairelands recede once more into the mists I think I’ll have spent about three weeks here, and I know there’s no way I’ll have seen it all.

And I think that’s a good thing.

Because there is so much, everyone’s Faire is unique. It’s your story: nobody else will have had quite the same Faire experience you did, or I did. Each of us carries a different part of the Faire away in our hearts. It is wrapped in our own love for this incredible place, kept safe so we can bring it back next year. For a lot of us, it’s a battery that recharges our enthusiasm and creativity. It’s a hope, too, in the better angels of our natures; a touchstone of what we can accomplish when we band together. The magic of the Fairelands is not made of prims or mesh or music, it is made of us.

All of us.

Without builders, there are no sims. Without merchants there are no stores, Without DJs there is no music. But without people there is no life here, and everyone is important. Every foot to tread the stones of Sanctum, every gasp at the Great Tree of The Faery Court or the sight of Hope’s Horizon, every smile in Wiggenstead Mooring, every silent tear in Junction… all of these – and so much more – are the breath and heartbeat of the Fairelands. A heartbeat that lasts throughout the year.

So do not mourn when the Fairelands slide away. They are not gone. We carry them with us and keep them safe for another year. As they return so do we, and life goes on. Hope goes on. The Faire goes on.

Fellow Fairelanders, I thank you all.

David Abbot
Coordinator, Fantasy Faire Radio
Writer and Coordinator, The Palace of Tears

Faire is…

fairebun1

This is my second year behind the scenes of Fantasy Faire where the magic happens, dinkie cats and Tiny Sheriffs run rampant and squirrels are served with morning coffee. The first year I was so new to everything that I felt I didn’t catch but a glimpse of what truly goes into making the Fairelands return every year. This year I’m much more experienced and therefore can reliably say that I will probably never grasp all the details of this megaevent, but what little I do has filled me with extreme respect toward the people who pull this off, year after year.

This is the sixth Fantasy Faire, sixth year when the Fairelands emerge on the grid, on this virtual plane we all live in, this strange reality we all share and love. I know the true veterans have a deeper understanding of the reasons, about the Faire itself, but the true veterans tend to be busy to the tips of their possibly elven ears or demonic horns and since my job here has me constantly writing, I figured I would scribble about this, too.

I have been thinking about the Faire and what it is during this week and I felt I had to say one thing, and say it very clearly. Fantasy Faire is not a Shopping Event. There is shopping involved, sure. We have nine whole sims dedicated only to shopping, over 150 merchants filling them, creators bringing in their best efforts, their labors of love to the Faire and linden dollars flow from visitor hands to kiosks day and night. Shopping is a big part of the Faire, but it is not a Shopping Event like we have all become used to these last few years. It is not about discounts, about latest themes and trends, it is not about exclusives or rare gacha prizes. There are all of those present amongst the Faire-wares, but they are not the essence of the Faire.

What is it then, you might ask. I could give you numbers in response if you happen to be statistically inclined. I could show spreadsheets covering over hundred hours of DJs playing aboard a dragon-borne ship, I could mention five fantastic live music concerts, I could attempt to describe the shows the almost ten jail and bail events turned to, speak about the puzzles of the hunt, mention the nearly thirty fantasy artists’s work visible in the Palace of Tears, link the posts of over sixty bloggers showing you the best of the Faire, marvel at the four roleplay groups weaving stories within the Fairelands, show you the true shinies of the auctions… oh, the statistics are breathtaking.

I could describe the sims, the Fairelands themselves, the immersion, the inspiration, the tangible fleeting beauty of life: virtual or not, the feeling is the same. Every year they rise in a different shape, but with the same spirit of wonder and promise. Every year they take our breath away, every year they speak to us if we have the ability to listen. They speak in the language of imagination and immersion, in the tone of devotion and effort. They come with a high price every year, with countless hours and nerves spent and broken, with hopes and dedication channeled into them and yet they rise, again and again, for the world-makers find that price worth paying.

I could speak of the community formed behind this, of the ties created in the insane insomniac hours, of having each other’s back, the feeling of being in this madness together. I could describe how the stress turns into laughter, into hijinks and shenanigans, tiny bands and dinkies on motorbikes, flash mobs, troll toll booths, crazy vehicles zooming around the Fairelands.

I could speak of the Cause, the Charity, the Relay. I have been personally so fortunate that my life has not been touched by this struggle at all, but that does not mean I cannot see the Cause or be touched by the people fighting on, be brought to tears by the stories, the shared desire to help, to defeat this enemy that has no physical form to attack, to win the fight where our weapons are perseverance, faith and hope.

I could write lengthy essays on any of those subjects, but the one thing I feel common in them is spirit. The feeling of being a part of something bigger, something shared. The Fairelands are created and brought on the grid for a brief time by a group that might be surprisingly small or surprisingly large, depending how familiar you are with this kind of processes, but what makes The Fairelands live is the visitors. All of you who come into the Faire without knowing what to expect just to be immersed into the surroundings, all of you who can be still touched by beauty, all of you with the spirit of wonder, all of you still able to feel hope.

Fantasy Faire is an immersive experience. It is meant to be felt, wandered and lived in. We all move there for its duration to soak in every possible moment of magic we can before the time is up. In that way the Fairelands are a perfect metaphor for life and what we all should focus on: beauty, magic, wonder. I sincerely hope the Faire has managed to reach out and share its spirit with as many visitors as possible.

Imagination, inspiration, immersion.

Hope.

Thank you.

- Sonya Marmurek
The Blogger Wrangler, Site Scribbler and the Resident Faire Bunny

Who is the Murderer in Mourningvale Thicket? Come and find out!

Have you been following the gruesome tale of the Mourngvale Murders?

Now, it seems, the truth will emerge!

Or will it?

It seems that is up to you!

SANCTUARY MURDER MYSTERY VOTE!!!!
Well, the suspects have been captured and now are brought to the scene of the crime. It’s between Belial Darwinian, the strange and mysterious figure BaronGillesDeRais, and Maleficent Diabolito!

The Suspects are being held in Mourningvale Thicket!
The Suspects are being held in Mourningvale Thicket!

Join us in Mourningvale Thicket from 12 noon to 2pm  and use the clues that you learned this week (or gather them now)  and vote using your Lindens as to who you think did the crime.

If you aren’t sure, you will be able to roleplay with (in other words, ask questions of)  the three suspects before placing your vote.

The suspect that has the most linden donated goes to jail for the murder of these people (irrespective of whether they are guilty or not) and the real killer will be revealed after the event at 2pm!

Come and join in the (gruesome) fun in Mourningvale Thicket and test your deduction skills!

 

Reminiscing: Why I Relay

Reminiscing - Why I RelayWhy I Relay.

I relay because of a phone call that changed my life forever. 5 years ago my brother phoned to tell me that he hadn’t been feeling well; it didn’t sound serious, perhaps he was afraid to scare me, he was after all my big brother. I was so proud of my brother for overcoming his sever learning disability and pursuing a college degree, so our call quickly changed to a story he was writing for class. Growing up my brother could barely read, I beamed with pride. My brother was my hero in every sense of the word and I couldn’t fathom a world without his presence; for surely the sun would stop shining and birds would cease to sing. He is my shining star.

I relay because a few days later my brother informed me that the doctors diagnosed him with lung cancer, Stage 4. I rallied because we were going to beat this, I was determined. We laughed, we cried, we told stories and mostly we told each other how much we loved each other and how proud we were of each others accomplishments. It was never a good-bye, it was a love that was to nourish our spirit and strengthen our fight against this disease. The big C… I can hardly bring myself to even say the word.

I relay because of twenty minutes. Twenty minutes. I drove ten hours through the night a few weeks later to visit my brother. The drive seemed to last for an eternity. My mind played memories of growing up and of things my big brother did that brought a smile to my face. I thought about the things we could do while I visited and I thought about vitamin concoctions I read about on the internet. I thought about his diet and the stories I read from survivors. I stopped for coffee, I was tired and had to pee; I shouldn’t have stopped for coffee. I waited in line for 20 minutes thinking about the difference in my brother’s voice during our last conversation. I continued to drive, armed with my smile and arsenal of love. My brother died 20 minutes before my arrival. Twenty minutes.

I relay because from that second on I lost a piece of me. It was as if this darkness enveloped my world and even after it dissipated the residual energy hung over me like a wet drape. Heavy and limp. I think of my brother every day. I hated the big C. I cursed it. In a blink of an eye it managed to steal my brother from me and leave behind a trail of heartache that went well beyond me. There should be a word stronger than “mourning.” There is no word in the English language that could effectively describe the loss of a piece of yourself. There just isn’t.

I relay because one day there will be a cure. I am positive of this. I relay for those who are fighting, those who survived, and for those who are left behind. I relay because I have hope. I relay because each year a tiny part of me returns when I read other’s stories and as silly as this sounds… as I round the track on SL with Gopu. I give a piece of myself to everyone I encounter and they give it back ten-fold. I relay for my brother and my family. I relay with a dream that the world will become cancer free.

Xxxooo
Dedicated to David, the world is a better place because of you. I miss you. Everyday.

Items in image are credited on Threads and Tuneage.