I just wanted to post here as a follow-up to your referencing of this thread in some Nephilim post we were going back and forth on last week.
First off, I have to say this strikes me as a fantastic idea if you guys can pull it off! It's awesome to see the fan activity in the Wing Commander Universe with all the games, discussions, and written fan fictions that are slapped up all over these boards. It might help organize things a bit and inspire fans to get involved in some shorter (or longer?) fan fiction projects if there's a larger repository somewhere of peoples' work in this regard.
As for my relation to this offer/proposal, I'd definitely be interested, but I'm not sure the thing I'm working on currently (a trilogy follow-up to Prophecy & Secret Ops) would mesh well with this kind of new, fresh environment. In some ways, I fear it's probably a bit risky writing what I'm writing because the main characters of my stories are/were the main characters from the games (which I realize will likely open a whole can of worms when all is said and done!). It seems like more of what we're talking about in your proposal here is creating a new, separate cast of characters writers themselves come up with for whatever story they plan held in whatever time period they wish; to that end, at MOST, these new, individual-writer-created characters may have some small interaction with a known character from Wing Commander history, but likely done in such a way so as to not rock the boat and run the risk of writing a famous Wing Commander character in a way that readers criticize doesn't do that character justice. And unfortunately the way my trilogy is currently going, such a story that exists as the continuing adventures of a long list of known and loved (or hated) Wing Commander characters may be a bit too controversial for its own good let alone that of your site's, and thus may actually serve as a bit of a detriment to what you might be looking to accomplish right out of the starting gate with true-blue, fresh, original fan fiction.
Assuming I get this beast written (or at least the first third of it), and enough people are actually interested in hearing more, then my next task is to write the two follow-up stories to it to bring it to a final end. After that, I have another fan fiction project I've been promising myself to get to (based on the Starsiege, pre-Tribes, Universe), as well as a brand new original piece of space fiction I've concocted in my head that I'm hoping will find its place as my first actual original work that exists in a unique universe no one's quite seen before. By the time I get to this last, original project, I may be in a position to better serve the interests of this short story site you're putting together by cranking out my own original Wing Commander experience that draws on characters we haven't seen yet engaging in adventures during whatever part of the timeline. I'll need to brainstorm a bit more before I even consider getting started on that (I've already got so much on my mind that it's hard to plan that far ahead), but I'd definitely be willing to work on my own short stories for your site when I make it to that point, especially if the consensus is that my stories don't genuinely suck and will help add some level of popularity to your anthology.
As for this trilogy I'm working on...if it receives some level of praise among the fanbase, then I'll talk to you again about adding it to your future site, though I must warn you it grossly violates the established prerequisite of actually being a "short" story! If it's not well received, though, as I said - I don't want my mistakes to inadvertently snowball your chances of success with this awesome idea.
And lastly as for my opinions on the matter (not that they matter because I'm just an average shmoe!)...I have to admit that grammer, spelling, proper military procedure (which I'm sure psych and most others here know infinitely better than me!), and whatever else are probably directly proportional to how professional and impressive you want your fan-fiction database site to look in the eyes of others. If it has poorly written garbage all over the place, it'll likely attract a certain element of writer and reader in the future, whereas if it's a compilation of extraordinary talent, you'll be dealing with a whole other group of fans. So naturally, it'll fall to those putting their blood, sweat, and tears into realizing this utopic anthology to decide exactly what they want to do and how they want to do it. But I'm of the belief myself that it should perhaps try to allow sections for readers and writers of nearly every ilk (within reason, of course), though perhaps more prominently underscore the literary achievements of your most impressive and accomplished writer base. As for breaking it down from there, I don't think you could do it by genre - tragedy, comedy, etc. - simply because a decent writer with a good story will probably draw on elements from all those concepts and include them in their story (all the Wing Commander games - to some extent - did that, right?). I like the idea of having it divied up first by time period, and then from there it's anybody's guess (perhaps by popularity, written perfection, etc.?). At any rate, those are but a few ideas, take them or leave them.
I'm just tossing it out there to give you something to think about.
...and lastly, I read back over things others have said about this idea, and I'm haunted by LOAF's words running like a broken record through my mind...about not taking the CIC Encyclopedia as gospel truth in the Wing Commander Universe...unfortunately, I'm kind of at a threshold on this first story where all I can respond to that is: "...whoops"
For better or worse,
Your fellow fan and writer,