Here's How It Works
Basically, nominate a fic that has been updated in January (be it a chaptered or one-shot story). Obviously, none of your nominations can be one of your own fics. Feel free to give reasons for your nomination but that isn't required to make one. You can nominate in this thread, or PM myself or Astinus if you prefer.
Yes, you can nominate something that someone else has already nominated, although to be most effective, you'll generally want to avoid seconding/thirding/whatevering. As in, while we don't really care at this point if you do nominate something someone's covered, we'd prefer it if you didn't, really.
Nominations will generally last for up to two weeks. In the remaining time that month, we'll gather all the fics that you chose and create a new thread for voting. You'll get one vote, but all of the votes will be anonymous (so don't be shy about your decision). Once that time is up, we'll take a peek at which fic got the most votes. Whoever does will be crowned the Fic of the Month, and the rest of you get pats on the back. If there's a tie, it'll be up to the mods of this section (bobandbill and Astinus) to cast the deciding vote.
To clear things up, not everything that gets posted within a month is eligible for being nominated. Here's the requirements to get on the list:
1. Because this is Fic of the Month, only fics updated within a one-month period are eligible. As in, they need to have posted a chapter (or the entire fic needs to have been posted, in the case of one-shots) on the forums any time between the first of the month to the last day of the month in order to qualify on the most basic level. Announcements, reviews, and review responses do not qualify a thread for nomination if the last chapter was not posted within the same month. We'll be checking to see if this is the case with any nominations just in case.
In this case, because we're nominating fics for the month of January, only fics with chapters posted between January 1 and January 31 qualify.
2. Because this is Fic of the Month, poetry is not eligible. That has its own nominations however within the Poetry subsection!
3. The thread must not have been closed for any reason. Yes, kids, breaking forum rules automatically gets your fic booted from the running. Sorry.
4. Fics that have already won Fic of the Month are also not eligible unless this is a completely new version. For example, let's say IanDonyer's Volkner's Tale had won Fic of the Month in its original version. The new version is still eligible because it's technically a different story. However, if Dagzar's Mentor wins Fic of the Month this time around, it's not eligible for further nominations, even if Dagzar adds new material to it. This is just to be fair and allow multiple fics to have the chance at getting on the rec list.
5. You must post your fic on PC to qualify. Sorry, but I'm pretty sure not that many people would like to download and open a PDF or DOC in order to decide whether or not they'd like to nominate you.
What's In It For Me?: Perks of Being Fic of the Month
If nominated, winners for Fic of the Month will receive the honor of having their fic listed on a stickied archive thread for posterity. (Note: This thread will not be up until after we get something to put in it.) That means more attention can be directed towards your fic, and you get to walk away with bragging rights.
There may be other perks in development as well.
The system is still in development, so if you can think of any ways to improve this, feel free to shout it out.
In the meantime, nominations for January Fic of the Month will run from now until February 15, and voting will be held until March 1.