Why UBC Is Still Closed Indefinitely

One of the questions I received as part of the UBC Q&A video that never came to fruition was this:

"Are you excited to unveil the new website?"

When I arrived at this question while filming, the answer that came out of my mouth completely changed my perspective.

I was not excited about unveiling the "new" site. In fact, I was dreading it.

It took me about a month to fully understand why I felt that way, and what I discovered is that it wasn't just one particular issue that was bothering me; it was a whole batch of inherent complications that I continually refused to acknowledge. I had to finally admit to myself that I was, to put it plainly, smearing lipstick on a pig. What I thought would be a from-the-ground-up fix for UBC's problem still did not take into account faults buried way beneath the metaphorical surface.

User Based Casting has no monetary potential. This is by far the most grating detail I've had to deal with because it means that the site isn't sustainable. Not only does UBC not pay for itself, it's actually something I PAY to do work for on a yearly basis. What I didn't consider going into the overhaul is that while my commitment and productivity would certainly increase, the site's potential and ability to pull in revenue would not.

For those of you who don't already know, I'm actually getting married next month. We're doing everything we can to find stable work that will allow us to save up for a house/provide for future children, and that means…well, it means that I actually have to make some money. The time commitment the UBC overhaul would involve for the foreseeable future was comparable to a part-time (possibly full-time) job for which I would never be paid. I'm sure you can see why this is a problem.

I can't work for free and I can't pay to work. I would hate to ask that of you and I hope you would not ask that of me. The level of work required to run UBC up until now was, while substantial at times, sustainable through high school and college—unfortunately, it just wasn't enough to make the site a success.

I tried to fight my strengths and weaknesses with this overhaul. I thought that I could force myself to do things that cause me distress; consistent social networking, reaching out to professionals in a field I know little about, the kinds of things that give me really shitty anxiety issues. I finally had to ask myself: why force what isn't there? Why should I make myself do things that I don't enjoy doing when I'm not even getting paid to do them? It would be one thing if the UBC overhaul consisted of changes I found personally exciting; instead, it's full of stuff that makes me depressed just from the thought of having to deal with it for years and years to come.

Also, I'm not an actress. I know little about the industry and I don't have any connections (or the savvy to make them) within the industry.  I used to think that I could one day charge Casting Directors for hosting Voting Cycles on UBC, but that was completely unrealistic. What I do has little value because I lack insight and expertise (and let's face it, interest) in the intricacies of casting. I wasn't the ideal person to have created this website for these reasons, and it's our non-existent progress that really confirms that my shortage of acting industry know-how is a problem.

I'm also not sure that YA adaptations are at a stable enough place in the market to adopt, even in part, a User Based Casting process. No one's willing to take a risk this early in the game; that's why we're seeing Chloe Mortez in If I Stay and The 5th Wave as well as Shailene/Ansel in both Divergent and The Fault in Our Stars. Directors are playing it safe, and I can't blame them. Perhaps the industry just isn't ready for us yet…

It's bothered me from the start that we had so many members, yet so few who participated regularly--less than 1% of our total membership, in fact. That's absolutely terrible; a clear indication that I was doing things wrong. What perhaps bothered me even more was that when I first took the site offline in February, I heard very little from most of you; particularly from our Finalists. These are the faces of our website, the people that potentially had the most to gain…and it felt as if they had already moved on. Actually, it felt like 99.8% of you had moved on. I don't say this to place blame on those who didn't react to UBC going offline; I merely want to point out how indicative these numbers are of UBC being past its time. If there was still some value to the site that was worth fighting for, I know more of you would have fought for it. 

I don't know what will happen next. I feel like we've worked too hard on the site to let it close down completely. If I can find an angle that requires less work on my part, I might be able to one day bring it back.

I have to be honest, though: I do think it's probably time to bring User Based Casting to a close. It had its time and at this point, it feels like I'm clinging to a whisper of potential that isn't actually there.

I want to thank you all for supporting UBC's wonderful 4.5 years online. I hope the experience was unforgettable and that you can look back on it as having made a positive contribution to your life. 

Updates and Clarification

Hi, everyone! I just wanted to give you guys an update since I haven't written anything here in a while. I also want to clarify a few things...


  • I'm more optimistic about a May re-opening date than I am about April. That will mean that we'll only have one VC per book this year. Sorry, guys!
  • The Fifth Wave was going to be one of the five new BTFAs—unfortunately, it was announced just a few days ago that the lead roles have been cast. (ARGH!)
  • Uglies is in advanced negotiations to become a TV show.


  • Almost all of you are referring to what I'm working on as a "new" site...but it's not. It's the same Ning network we've always had with a slightly altered appearance. The main changes I'm making are to our policies, voting schedule, BTFAs, the overall "polish" of our pages, and PR strategies.
  • Aside from a few old groups, none of your content has been deleted.
  • It's probably not the epic overhaul that you think it is. Please don't get your hopes too high—like I said, it's more about changing the content and policies than the design/underlying structure!

I'll be honest: these last couple of weeks have been tough. There are many days where I feel like UBC has run its course and that it's time to let it go. I've been enjoying not having to worry about the site and being able to go for long stretches of time without the internet. I started off strong at the beginning of my overhaul efforts, but I'm getting discouraged by how so few members have expressed any discontentment/sadness about the site going offline. (The implications of that worry me.) What also worries me is that I'm committing myself to a full-time, unpaid job—hell, I actually have to PAY to do it. This was fine when I was in high school and college, but it isn't going to work now because, well, money. I needs it for rent and stuff.

Basically, I'm re-assessing what I can realistically do to make UBC not suck while being able to work and have a life. There are definitely ways for me to simplify routine things I'll need to do to promote Voting Cycles, and that's the kind of stuff I need more time to develop. (By creating templates for everything in advance—particularly stuff like emails, pre-formatted posts for bloggers, Finalist videos, and promotional graphics—I'll be saving my future self's ass! It's just a ton of work up-front.)

Hang in there, people. I'm sure I'll figure it out.

A Brief Pause

Hey, everyone! I'm spending a week in California and don't anticipate being able to put in much work on UBC while I'm here. I'm doing what I can to ensure an April re-launch, but there's a chance that I will need more time and that our first Voting Cycle won't take place until July. (If that's the case, I'll swap Uglies with Monument 14 in light of the TV show news.)

Take care!



Here's a demonstration of why it's taking me so long to put the site back up.

Like with most things, web design is a process.  It takes a lot of epic fails to get anywhere.

Here are just a few of my failures from yesterday and today. (I just wish I would have taken more pictures—there were so many more color/placement fails that will forever go undocumented!)

In a later post, I'll be sure to show you guys what all of this looks like behind the scenes. It totally does not involve me sitting at my desk typing away at teh codez and singing to myself...

The "before" shots.

After copying everything over to the slightly improved template I built earlier...






Why the hell not?

Ok, so this mess is me dumping some options on the page—a large drop-down menu, a table, and a list. Hated them all. Next!

 After spending some time learning how to code them/fixing my numerous mistakes, a wild mini drop-down menu appears!

But wait, does THIS style look better?

LOL NOPE. (You can't tell here because I had only prepared two of them at this point, but the drop-down menus were uneven and gross and no.)

This is also the point where I realize that this purple is too similar to the purple in use on the GONE page, so that had to go. Cue me testing out numerous shades of blue...

Here's me testing out left/right placements and realizing, oh hey, let's try moving ALL the buttons to the left like I should have done 38509345 hours ago so that they'll be even and stuff!




I'm realizing that these pictures don't come close to exposing the full extent of my torture. Expect that second post soon.

Aaaand now I get to implement this new Runners-Up format on eight more pages.

The Infernal Devices RQs

To give you guys a head start before the site re-opens, I now present to you...TID Required Monologues for our May Voting Cycle! (I'll also be posting these on Facebook and Tumblr later today.)


TID: Tessa: "Perfectly Harmless" — Chapter Sixteen, 350-352 (Begin "Nate...", end "...no place for us in New York, Nate.")
TID: Tessa: "I Won't Do It" — Chapter Nineteen, 435-437 (Begin "I don't want it," end "...knife through my heart.")

Tags: tessaTID, TID


TID: Jessamine: "This Was My House" — Chapter Six, 152-154 (Begin "This was my house")
TID: Jessamine: "Too Handsome to Die" — Chapter Thirteen, 299-300

Tags: jessamineTID, TID

TID: Sophie: "Fit To Be Seen" — Chapter Five, 111-112
TID: Sophie: "All Sorts of Things" — Chapter Seven, 156-157

Tags: sophieTID, TID


TID: Will: "Pyxis" — Chapter Four, 85-87 (Begin "Good evening, Thomas," end "...doesn't like to see her work too hard.")
TID: Will: "If You Must Know" — Chapter Five, 106-108 (Begin "Singing the praises," end "...I'll have to befriend Jessamine.")

Tags: willTID, TID

TID: Jem: "Someone He Trusted" — Chapter Thirteen, 304 (Begin "What Will is trying to say," end "...brother might know.")
TID: Jem: "He's So Stubborn" — Chapter Fifteen, 338-340 (Begin "He's so stubborn," end "...how they were so weak.")

Tags: jemTID, TID

Moar Updates

Hey, guys! Just wanted to let you know that I've been working on UBC-related stuff pretty much non-stop over the last few days. In that time, I did things like deleting 200 inactive pages (!!!), updating our forum categories, purging inactive groups, creating new groups, updating our Event calendar,—

*doorbell rings, books just arrived!*

—setting up a contest page, immediately redoing said contest page with Twitter bootstrap because it looks better, updating our Participate/User Agreement/Vote pages, and even came close to finalizing the The Infernal Devices RQs.

I'll admit that doesn't sound like much given the time I've put in, but let me tell you something—creating informative pages is a process. What information is relevant? How should I phrase the information? In which order should I present the information in each tab? Am I maintaining a pleasing aesthetic in each tab? Where can I make cuts so that the information appears balanced on the page? Are the tab titles appropriate and informative? Is the progression of information from tab to tab logical? Have I provided enough information? Are there any redundancies or contradictions in my copy?  Is my copy well-written/strong enough to represent both myself and this site?

It takes me HOURS to get all of that stuff somewhat right.

Add in doing all of this with HTML/Twitter Bootstrap and you have yourself a project. ;-)

(I sure as hell couldn't have done this five years ago! Maybe I'll stop using break tags after paragraphs and use CSS instead someday. Heh. Right. ETA: Just noticed a small but non-harmful mistake in the source code. Just thought I'd say that before someone calls me out on it...)

As with the pages, most of the changes I'm making require some trial and error. I don't get it right on the first try (or, in the case of one particular design element, twenty-eight tries), which is why all of this is taking so much time.

Anyway, thanks again for being patient. Now that I have books to work with, things can really start progressing. Wish me luck!

Voting Cycle/Contest Schedule

OK, so I may have changed the way the site looks a little.
Nothing drastic, though—that'll happen when we switch
to Ning 3.0 later this year. (Boo...)

Hello again! Here's what I'm thinking for our new Voting Cycle schedule. Remember that you will be signing up and voting for three adaptations at a time.

  • Sign-ups End: 10th of Jan, March, May, July, Sep, Nov
  • Voting Cycle Begins: 15th of Jan, March, May, July, Sep, Nov
  • Voting Cycle Ends: 25th of Jan, March, May, July, Sep, Nov
  • Results Announced: 27th of Jan, March, May, July, Sep, Nov

Please let me know if that sounds good to you!

ETA: I want to propose that our Original Web Series Pitch Contest follow that schedule also. 

For scene contests, I'm thinking the following:

Submissions due: 25th of preceding month
Round #1 Voting: 1st - 10th
Round #1 Winners Announced: 12th
Round #2 Voting: 15th - 25th
Round #2 Winner Announced: 27th

Updates and Feels

I have updates on a couple of things:

  • I've edited all of the "What Does UBC Mean to You?" clips I've received so far. I regret to say that some of the transitions and editing might be sloppy because my computer can't handle all of your awesome footage. Boo...
  • I ordered the black logo tee from Redbubble to make sure that it looks OK. If it does, you'll have the purchase link soon!
  • I finished my first read-through of Clockwork Angel yesterday. Once I have the RQs for the upcoming Voting Cycle in May, I'll post them here to give you guys a head start.

This next part's a little more personal.

Throughout this process, we've had about ten people routinely commenting on this blog—thanks so much for that. As you can imagine, however, I have to really ask myself where the other 3390 of you are. Where are our Finalists? Our old Finalists? The people who said they couldn't imagine living without UBC? Why have emails from concerned members not been flooding my inboxes? Why do so few people care anymore? (Ok, so I know the answers to those last few. It's what prompted the site overhaul in the first place.)

Even though I know the site overhaul will fix a lot of the problems we've had, I still can't help but realize:
  • I'm terrified that despite the countless hours that are going into this revamp, nothing will change. 
  • I'm terrified that too many of you have already moved on.
  • I'm terrified by the sheer volume of work that's still ahead of me.
  • I'm terrified of screwing up again.

You know, just the usual feels. ;-)

Video Update

This is why I never upload anything. (In other news, I smack my copy of Clockwork Angel approximately six million times during this video.)

Merchandise Follow-Up #2

We're officially on Redbubble! I'll let you guys know when our initial line of merch is ready to go.  (So much for taking a day off, eh?)

ETA: I'm planning to release designs inspired by our BTFAs, but I need to wait on those for a few months for three reasons:

1. I'm swamped with other UBC-related improvements.
2. I haven't finalized our newest BTFAs yet. ;)
3. I need to renew my Illustrator subscription. Vector files are good, mmkay?

General Updates

Hey, guys! I'm taking off most of today to work on personal projects (i.e. design work and my book). In the meantime, please leave a comment if you have suggestions for either of the following:

  • Which book bloggers/vloggers do you think we should reach out to?
  • Do you have any additional suggestions for BTFAs? (Remember that they need to have been optioned within the last 6-8 months.)
You can view a list of the adaptations currently up for consideration here.

P.S. I've decided to go with Redbubble (thanks for the suggestion, Gabby!) because they're cheaper than Zazzle. Unfortunately, I'm having some issues with file uploads and am waiting to hear back from tech support.

Merchandise Follow-Up Post

Based on the maximum prices you guys said you'd be able to pay for a t-shirt, I don't think Zazzle is going to work out.

Based on my calculations, I'll need to bulk-order somewhere between 30-40 of them in order to make a profit, cover shipping and handling, and keep the selling price at $20. Unfortunately, this requires me to spend $200-300 upfront on shirts that have no guarantee of ever being purchased.

These are the two styles I'm considering. Given the upfront cost and time/expensive to ship these myself, I think selling just one shirt design and nothing else for now would be reasonable.


Let's talk contests.

  • Jan, July: Voting Cycle Set #1 (Max Ride, Uglies, M14)
  • March, Aug: Voting Cycle Set #2 (GONE, TBA, TBA)
  • May, Nov: Voting Cycle Set #3 (TID, TBA, TBA)
  • April, Aug: Original Web Series Content
  • Feb, June, Oct, Dec: Scene Contest

Here's what each contest will entail.


The Original Web Series Pitch Contest will take place in April and August. To participate, users must first critique fifteen BTFA audition videos during the month the contest takes place*. (You will need to verify this when submitting your entry; a simple "I critiqued fifteen videos prior to sending you my submission" would be fine.)

Users will write and submit a 250-word pitch for an original web series. The pitch with the highest number of votes will win the following:

  • A featured video on our main Youtube channel that will include your pitch, an interview, and any information you wish to include about casting and deadlines;
  • Your own group on User Based Casting to aid in the development of your web series;
  • Shout-outs on our social media accounts for casting calls and whenever a new episode is available;
  • Discount code for UBC merch;
  • A custom logo and Youtube intro provided and chosen by me. (Not sure if this is really a reward or not—ha!)
By winning, you will have full access to all of our actors on UBC. Using your group, you can hold auditions, share ideas, keep track of deadlines, and ultimately begin putting out regular episodes. You can have as many or as few episodes as you would like; either way, User Based Casting will feature interviews with snippets from each episode on our Youtube Channel for a full six months after your first episode debuts. (Note that it will be your responsibility to remind your cast about filming and sending me their interview responses.)

Anyone can vote in this contest. Unlike our Voting Cycles, this will be based entirely on popularity. Ask your friends and family to vote often!


BTFA scene contests will take place in February, June, October, and December. The premise is simple: collaborate on a scene from one of our featured BTFAs with at least one other UBC member. Voting will consist of two rounds:
  • Round #1: Submissions are categorized by adaptation (i.e. Maximum Ride, Uglies, etc). Voters go on to determine the Finalist for each category. 
  • Round #2: Finalists from each category compete with one another. The submission with the most votes is declared the winner.
The overall winner will receive the following:
  • A video on our main Youtube channel that will include snippets of your winning submission, an interview with you and your cast-mates, and a link to view the full submission on your channel;
  • Your video featured on our main page;
  • Special still-frame edits for use on Tumblr and Pinterest;
  • Discount code for UBC merch;
  • Shout-outs on our social media accounts.
Runners up will be briefly featured in our Finalist Results video (wherein I'll reveal the nine entries that are moving on to the second round). As with the collaboration contest, this will be a popularity contest—ask friends and family to vote often.

Well, there you have it! That's the plan. If you have any objections or suggestions, let me know. 

*So back in, oh, '11 or '12, we had an interesting "problem" emerge: web series.

As far as site activity went, things were actually at an all-time high. I won't deny that. There were people online at all hours posting audition videos for each other's web series, writing scripts and filming scenes in their free time. It's that level of dedication that became the problem, though: it was at the expense of everything else. UBC had slowly come to revolve around original web series instead of Voting Cycles—and that sure as hell wasn't what I signed up for. To keep the situation from getting any worse, I banned original web series from User Based Casting and haven't looked back since...until now.

Don't get me wrong: I've always thought web series are awesome, and I will be happy to start allowing them again as long as we don't lose sight of UBC's goal. Ok? Ok.

What UBC Means to You: Video Collaboration!

Some of you took it pretty hard when UBC went offline. The messages you sent me via Facebook about how much UBC meant to you were utterly heart-melting and awesome and asdjflskdfksd THE FEELS.

Because of that, I would like to start off this whole Youtube channel revival thing with a collaboration. The premise is simple: in a minute or less, tell us what UBC means to you. If you have them on hand, feel free to also send me one of the first and last videos you posted to the site so that I can show how far you've come as an actor or actress.

I will accept clips in .mov or .mp4 format up until February 28th—that's two days from now. Please email them to kat@userbasedcasting.com.

(Also: Please vote in the Audition Video poll if you haven't done so already!)


In an effort to raise some funds for our site overhaul, I'm going to start selling UBC merchandise.

I've been reluctant to sell UBC shirts because the LAST thing I would want is for some creep to visit our site and search for you because they saw our URL on your t-shirt. For that reason, no products will have our URL on them—just logos and tag lines. (In response to Gabby's comment—I can totally incorporate our BTFAs into the merch designs!)

So tell me: what types of items would you buy? What's the most you would be willing to pay for them?  (The ones pictured above totally have my vote!)

You can view a full list of Zazzle products here: http://www.zazzle.com/create

Audition Videos (Follow-Up Poll)

Thank you all so much for your feedback on my Audition Videos post—your comments were very insightful! However, I must confess that I still have no idea what to do about the number of videos featured on our voting pages. Let's take a vote, shall we?

Option #1: Participants edit their final takes of their character's two Required Monologues together (along with their slate) for the Voting Cycle.

  • Having one video per person on our voting pages would be less intimidating for voters.
  • Voters would still have the benefit of viewing two contrasting monologues for each character.
  • Because many can people gauge the talent of an actor within seconds, the second monologue could serve as a potential tie-breaker for voters struggling to choose between several candidates.

  • As Raina pointed out, Casting Directors are unlikely to watch more than a few seconds of your video. 
  • Many of you also stated that you wouldn't watch all the way until the end. (I've never required voters to do that, though—it shouldn't take more than 10-20 seconds to figure out how good of an actor someone is!)
  • Not all members have access to a video editor and would need to make arrangements with other members (i.e. swap a video edit for X number of critiques).

Option #2: Participants film and upload their final takes of their character's two Required Monologues separately. (A slate would be required for each.) Both are used for the Voting Cycle.

  • Voters would continue to have the benefit of viewing two contrasting monologues for each character.
  • No editing required.
  • Having two videos per candidate per character may intimidate and scare off potential voters.

Option #3: Participants film and upload their final takes of their character's two Required Monologues separately. (A slate would be required for each.) Only one—selected at random—is used for the Voting Cycle.

  • Having one video per person on our voting pages would be less intimidating for voters.
  • Voters and Casting Directors will be able to gauge your talent quickly and may not even need to see a second video.
  • No editing required.
  • Easiest option for me! ;)
  • Voters wouldn't have the benefit of viewing two contrasting monologues for each character.

Vote away!

Intro Sequence for Future Youtube Videos

This is basically what the intro sequence for our Youtube videos will look like—I just need to make sure the video and images are HQ for the final version.

Audition Videos

Two things:
  • All characters will have 1-2 Required Monologues per Voting Cycle.
  • Those Required Monologues will change after each Voting Cycle.

Please let me know your thoughts on the following points and if there's anything you would like me to add to the list. I'm not an actress, so I'd really love to hear from people who know the industry and what Casting Directors would prefer to see.

  • Should participants be required to begin their audition videos with a slate? (This involves stating things like your name, age, city, and height.)
  • Because there will only be two Required Monologues to film per character, should participants be required to edit their final takes together into one video (along with their slate) for use in our Voting Cycles? 
    • The thinking behind this is that having one video per person could make the voting process seem less daunting to voters. It would also make it easier for me to work with your videos when editing Finalist interviews and running promotions.
    • You'd only need to edit/slate your best takes of the two monologues required for the Voting Cycle. Videos that you add for critiquing purposes will remain informal.
  • Should I require participants to add a pre-made, five-second intro containing the UBC logo and our URL to the beginning of any videos used for our Voting Cycles?  I just made the aforementioned intro and I think it'll make more sense to use it only for videos uploaded to our official channel. Perhaps I'll just ask you guys to link to UBC in your video description per Gabby's suggestion!
    • This would be a great way to advertise ourselves on Youtube without being obnoxious.
  • Should participants be required to use a reading partner? No reading partner it is!
  • Should participants with poor lighting or audio be disqualified?
  • Should scenes filmed professionally/on location be admissible in a Voting Cycle, or would this be an unfair disadvantage for those who lack the resources to do the same? I'm leaning toward Gabby's idea of featuring location scenes on the main page and requesting that videos entered in the Voting Cycles be filmed against a solid background.
  • How should videos with excessive ad-libbing be handled?

ETA: After reading the comments so far, my idea is this:

When uploading videos for the sole purpose of receiving critiques, no editing or slate is necessary. When you get to the point where your videos are Voting Cycle-ready, you'll need to edit them—and your slate—together. (I'm still thinking about the brief UBC intro; that'll be of more use to us when we lose the ability to do direct uploads later this year.) Gabby is right about privacy issues, so it's up to you on what you include in your slate. At a minimum, I would recommend stating your first name (be it real or fake), age, and country.

Voting Cycles & Finalists


Fang here. Man, I've gotta tell you all about the delicious new sauce I used on my desert rat this morning....

Just kidding.

I started this blog so that you guys can have some idea of what I'm doing to fix our beloved site. I'll be posting my plans for you to critique throughout the entire renovation process. (Don't expect any changes to the site's theme, though—I'll have to do that when we switch to Ning 3.0.)

I want to start by talking about some of the changes I want to make concerning Voting Cycles and Finalists. Please let me know what you think.

1. Voting Cycles. We had too many of them. When you guys told me that a Voting Cycle a month was too long to wait, I overcompensated—and the result sucked. We ended up having so many Voting Cycles that they, along with the Finalist titles, became devalued. It was also particularly easy to blow off signing up when there was another one right around the corner.

So here's what I'm thinking: I'd like to hold two Voting Cycles per year for each of our nine—yes, NINE—book to film adaptations. Those adaptations would, for logistical reasons, be grouped into sets. Our Voting Cycle schedule would look something like this*:

  • January: Max Ride, M14, Uglies (BTFA Set #1)
  • February: Voting Cycle Prep, Other Contests & Events
  • March: GONE, TBA, TBA (BTFA Set #2)
  • April: Voting Cycle Prep, Other Contests & Events
  • May: TBA, TBA, TBA (BTFA Set #3)
  • June: Voting Cycle Prep, Other Contests & Events
  • July: Max Ride, M14, Uglies (BTFA Set #1)
  • August: Voting Cycle Prep, Other Contests & Events
  • September: GONE, TBA, TBA (BTFA Set #2)
  • October: Voting Cycle Prep, Other Contests & Events
  • November: The Infernal Devices, TBA, TBA (BTFA Set #3)
  • December: Voting Cycle Prep, Other Contests & Events

*Note that voting would run simultaneously for all adaptations in a given set.

For an explanation regarding the sets, see #2.

I still haven't decided on the ideal duration—I'm thinking seven days—so please let me know for how long you feel voting should stay open.

2. Finalists. Your titles were devalued and the rewards weren't high enough to make re-filming and trying worth your time.

Because we'd only have two Voting Cycles per book per year, your titles would regain their former significance. Huzzah!

But that's not all. Do you see how I grouped our BTFAs into sets in the Voting Cycle schedule?

  • Set #1: Max Ride, Uglies, M14 (January, July)
  • Set #2: GONE, TBA, TBA (March, September)
  • Set #3: The Infernal Devices, TBA, TBA (May, November)

The method to my madness is to pair a hugely popular adaptation with two lesser-known adaptations. I have two reasons for doing this:

  • A stipulation of this new schedule would be that members can only become a Finalist for one adaptation per set. This means that it will not be possible for any one member to ever hold more than three Finalist titles.
  • Because of my pairing strategy, you won't be denied the chance to audition for our most popular titles (Max Ride, GONE, TID) just because you received a Finalist title in a previous set.

I believe that this method will allow everyone a reasonably fair opportunity to become a Finalist for our most popular adaptations while giving up-and-coming members a better chance at becoming Finalist titles for our lesser known adaptations.

If you are a Finalist for multiple characters within the same set, I will contact you privately and ask you to choose the character for which you would prefer to be the Finalist. You will be ranked second for the character you didn't choose, and the member who ranked just below you will become the new Finalist. (If you think the member should instead be dropped from the Top Five entirely, please let me know!)

I also plan to promote and pamper the hell out of our Finalists. Since the Finalists for any given adaptation will change just twice a year, that stability will allow me to organize cool stuff like Finalist interviews, cool "group" edits, scene collaborations...you name it. (I'll talk about this  in more detail some other time!)

3. Re-Filming. The solution to this one is easy: re-film your Required Monologues before every Voting Cycle. That's it!

4. Required Monologues: There will be fewer of them. They will also change every six months. (You're welcome!)

I have so much more to talk about, but I don't want to overwhelm. Please leave a comment if you have any comments about my proposed changes. Thanks for reading and here's to a better UBC!