Alright, Survivors and Survivorettes (once again, there aren’t enough Survivorettes. Females used to dominate this game. Is my sex appeal dead or something?), here we go.

Fiction 59 is always the first challenge in this game, and this season is no exception. It’ll be a short week, but don’t sweat it too much, because there are no penalties for sucking.

Your task is to write a complete story in exactly 59 words. There’s some confusion between Google Docs, Word and other programs about what constitutes a “word,” but let’s put it this way: if I can figure out why you came up with 59 words, it’s good enough.

Stories can be about anything, and will be scored on a scale of 1-5 (I’m going to come out and say that “1” from me is almost nonexistent. I have to assume you were saying “FU” to the challenge and giving no effort to even consider it). You’ll notice that I give a lot of threes, but don’t think of that in terms of 60% – think of it more in terms of Netflix: 5-Loved it, 4-Really Liked it, 3-Liked it, 2-Didn’t like it, 1-Hated it. I just “like” a lot of things.

Anyway, there will be no elimination this week, and no penalty for not submitting, although penalties for not submitting will be harsh later. This is a chance for you to try something and see what we think of that style, and for you to get an idea of who your teammates are. So, while there’s no penalty for not submitting, your teammates will almost certainly notice that you didn’t submit and will wonder if they can rely on you in the long run.

Since there’s no elimination this week, scores will mean nothing other than giving noobs and people new to the writing seasons a barometer. In the case that this week is needed for a future tiebreaker, however, your scores will be used (so the reasons to do this are mounting, I guess).

They’re due Saturday by 5pm Central in my inbox ( Judging goes like this: I don’t open the challenge emails, I just set them into a separate folder. At the end of the submission period, my wife randomizes them so I don’t know who wrote what. I copy the document and send it to DK, and we do our scoring. Then I cut and paste his scores and comments into my document, and post the results here. Normally, then, the losing team would have to vote out a member (anonymously) by Monday, but since there’s no elimination, you can expect me to post a new challenge either late Saturday or early Sunday that will be due the following Saturday.

One last piece of business: Ryan Fossum asked about the game out of nowhere (he hasn’t played since season V) and Patrick Kozicky finally got back to me as well. If a third person shows up, and I think one might, the three of them will randomly be added to the current teams. But then, folks, we’re capped. Okay? Good Lord.

Cheers, Survivors. I like the level of talent this season. Don’t f*&^in’ let me down.