ScribeHouse Rocks! Presents: How a backlog becomes a scroll.
By Lady Deirdre Grenewode, OSW- Backlog Deputy to the Tyger Clerk of the Signet
“I’m just a scroll, oh an unassigned scroll and I’m sitting here on the backlog roll”
So how does a scroll get on the backlog list anyway? Once it’s there how does it get to a scribe and how long does the process take? Let’s walk through the process step by step, shall we?
First of all, how does a scroll even end up on the backlog list? There are a few different ways. The first way is that a scroll bearing award is given out in court but there is no scroll to accompany it. This could be because the scroll was lost or damaged on the way to the event, the scribe didn’t have enough time to finish it or no scribes were available to take the assignment. It can also happen because the decision to give the award was made last minute. Scrolls that come to the backlog via this route are automatically placed there by the Signet office.
The other main way a scroll ends up on the backlog list is because a recipient received a scroll for their award but it was somehow lost, damaged or destroyed. For this category the recipient of the lost or damaged scroll must contact the Backlog Deputy and request a new scroll themselves. This service is only available once per award so if something happens to the second scroll there are no further do overs. To request a scroll from the backlog deputy go to the link below and fill out the request form.
Before we move on I should mention that people are welcome to privately commission a scribe to make their backlog scrolls, but we request that the backlog deputy and the Tyger Clerk be notified so the scroll doesn’t also get assigned to someone else.
Step two, the scroll is now on the backlog list, what happens next? Scrolls are placed on the backlog list in the order that the backlog deputy is notified that a backlog scroll is needed. Unlike scrolls for awards for upcoming courts, the backlog deputy does not have a list of scribes to contact to assign scrolls to. Scribes interested in taking on a backlog scroll write to the backlog deputy and request one. They may simply request any assignment or they might request something more specific, such as an award type, particular time period of interest or even a backlog scroll belonging to a specific person. Scrolls are assigned out oldest to newest on the list, taking into account the parameters and skills of the requesting scribe.
Once a scroll gets assigned to a scribe the scribe initially has 3 months to complete it. There is a standard extension process afforded all scribes to allow a total of six months. Extenuating circumstances may mean an individual is allowed an even longer time frame, but those decisions are made on a case by case basis. If a scroll is not being completed in a timely manner it may be reassigned, in which case the process starts again with the next scribe it is assigned to. As one can see it can take a very long time for a scroll on the backlog to be completed. Higher level scrolls (such as peerages) have fewer scribes available who are comfortable taking them so often wait longer than silver level awards.
One occasion a group of scribes may decide to have a backlog completion day. In this case the backlog deputy would assign out an appropriate number of scrolls but the deadline for completion would likely be shorter.
So how many scrolls can there possibly be on the backlog list anyway? At the moment we’ve got just over 100. Those of you paying close attention to the Tyger Clerk’s presentation at Curia will remember that we currently have about 95 active scribes in the East and most of them are busy with scrolls going out in future courts. The oldest scroll on the list was awarded in A.S. 27. Less than half of the scrolls on the list are currently assigned to scribes.
So that’s the process of a backlog becoming a scroll. Please remember to have patience with how long it may take for your scroll to be made and finally make its way to you. The East truly has the best scribes in the Knowne World, but the price for that is time. Also write your scribe a thank you note, or give them kudos on social media. They are all volunteer artists and deserve to be told how happy their wonderful work makes us all.