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Old 05-07-2002, 10:07 AM   #121
Nar
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I basically agree with your position on RPG, littlemanpoet-- and you know more about them than I, I have only played a few, briefly, and I've never run a game. I think, however, that your suggestion at the end that the results of a game could be written up and become a work of fiction is very true. That last stage of putting all of the creation, including the events & reactions in the game down in written form, and possibly editing and coalating it would produce art, and there's no limit to how good or serious it might become.

There's a theory that the plays of Shakespeare were a group effort-- that Shakespeare wrote the scenarios and most of the dialogue, and the actors then fleshed out their characters by adding or expanding their lines, and the resulting plays were later written up. This would account for the plays' huge vocabulary-- as I understand it, no other author has ever coined or used so many different words. I tend to disagree with this theory; I tend to think think Shakespeare wrote Shakespeare, rather than a group or the Earl of Oxford or whoever, but this 'the plays were written by a group' theory does works very well to explain things like Shylock suddenly turning from a cardboard villain into a human being and tragic figure in the end of The Merchant of Venice-- I can imagine the actor doing Shylock getting carried away by his character, breaking out of his limited role and ad-libbing his 'If you prick us, do we not bleed?' speech.

Suppose the plays of Shakespeare were a group effort, then they would be literature's first and greatest body of work derived from a RPG. Shakespeare would be both 'Court and Dungeon' -master and editor/poliser/poet of the published Folio containing the plays. This final process of gathering and editing would have been crucial in pulling the plays into unified works of art. Even if the plays were a group effort, there's no disputing that Shakepeare was a brilliant poet, and storyteller, he just may also have been a brilliant editor.
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Old 05-07-2002, 10:22 AM   #122
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Hey, Cool!
I love to write as narratives from third person to first person views and RPG really gets me going.

You got that right about REH, brother! He's right there among the best, too bad he didn't get fifty more years of a writing career.

Hey, I have all the books on Conan, the novels, the mags, the shorts and all the marvel comics, but this isn't the place to discuss my Hyborian obsession.

Thanks for you views, you write well!
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Old 05-07-2002, 11:47 AM   #123
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well, thanks, littlemanpoet, undoubtedly yours has many layers of kenning too...

interesting points about dreams, and also from the Cimmerian about writing for RPGs, Crom knows i've done enough of that for my own game (where i'm preparing to send them to Middle-Earth on a scavenger hunt, of all places, right in the middle of the action. Yes, something really IS rotten in the land of Gondor, you could say...) Some of it, i suppose, could make great narrative fiction later (tales from the game log "The Story so Far") and i find myself planning things that hang on the anticipated reactions of the players/characters to certain things i stage in their paths. Part of what makes being a GM so much fun i guess...

well, i suppose i should get back to work on that fanfic, so i can have something more to talk about on this delightful forum of yours!

ST
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Old 05-07-2002, 06:19 PM   #124
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Thanks for telling me about Faeriewordweavers littlemanpoet! I've been gone for a while and just sat back down to a computer, so it's taken me a while to reply. [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]
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Old 05-07-2002, 07:05 PM   #125
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On Writing Fantasy--Most of my ideas come from places I've seen or dreamt of. Alot of my characters are based on my family and close friends, but also and quite prominately the different aspects of my (if I may say so myself) diverse personality. My feelings and thoughts are constantly ripping me into little tiny pieces. I almost always write about the past, at least from my POV, and I almost always base it in a land seperate and different from the one we live in. It is truely difficult not to take another story's world and steal from it, or to build upon a world already created and set forth, ready and waiting patiently for someone to set events down in its borders. My solution is simply remembering that what I am writing is diferent from what I am reading, or what I remember reading. I know that the character I put in one of the RPGs here has been adapted from one of my own stories because she was my faveorite. But she didn't start as on of Tolkien's Rangers. She started as a Shieldmaiden traveling the world constantly evolving in my mind, betrothed to someone higher than her, almost untouchable. It is verrry hard.

On RPGs--Yes, it is serious fantasy, and No, it's not. It depends on what level you write it. If you are one of the rare jewels who take into concideration grammer, word choice, and plot lines, than you may be writing something serious. But if you just throw things out 'cuz it sounded cool in your head, than you may not.

On Time-- I have been writing fantasy stories since I was six or seven. I have jumped from story to story and the one I am working in earnest on now I have been tackling for a meagre 2 weeks.

An Open Question-- Is fanfiction serious fantasy? I was just wondering if anyone had any thoughts on anything I've said in my post, please write back, 'cuz I never get any replies. *snif, snif*
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Old 05-07-2002, 07:56 PM   #126
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If you haven't guessed already, Laiedheliel, my standards for serious fantasy are pretty high. If it starts out as fanfic then takes off and becomes truly your own, then in my pov it's serious. I guess part of the standard for me is that the subcreation is coming mostly out of your own creativity and does not depend for its very existence on someone else's subcreated system.

By the way, welcome to the Downs, Laiedheliel. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 05-07-2002, 09:17 PM   #127
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Well...I've read some really good fanfiction of Tolkien that take place after the books. It's really well done, the plot is amazing, her grammar is incredible, characterization unbelievable! But, it's not original in the sense that she (and every other fanfiction writer...myself included) borrow characters for their plot. If you, say, take that wonderful little plot, and put something of your own into it (ie. your own characters) instead of someone elses, then it becomes your own, and shows your creativity and how much effort you put into the story. I'm not saying fanfiction is bad though, I love fanfiction. And I know it can be hard to write it as well from personal experience. I'm just saying basically what littlemanpoet said but WAY longer. *sheepish grin* oops..hehe. sorry!
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Old 05-08-2002, 02:03 PM   #128
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Hey your from Canada! Cool. Ok, this fantasy writing stuff sounds really cool, and I was just wondering if some of you have your fanfiction on a website or something. If you do, please tell me which one!
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Old 05-08-2002, 05:15 PM   #129
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Yep! A proud Canadian! [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]
I have mine at fanfiction.net, under the original sections. But, it's in the first draft and WAY sucks right now. *ugh*
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Old 05-08-2002, 05:48 PM   #130
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Wow, that's so cool [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] I'm gonna be a Canadian. When I move there with Chad. Well Chad already lives there, he lives in Vancouver. Well of course, that's if I don't get Billy but that won't happen, cuz I'm a very determined person! But Chad.....oh yeaah. I think I shouldn't be writing stuff like this anyway cuz this isn't the Nickelback message board. But I just have to say things like this sometimes cuz I'm always in situations where something reminds me of them and I have to say it! But are you from Vancouver????? That would be so awesome!!!!!! And ok, last one sorry, but do you like Nickelback? I just had to ask and sorry cuz this has nothing to do with the topic. Sorry, I do this to other people too when I have things remind me of The Lord of the Rings. I have problems people.
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Old 05-08-2002, 05:52 PM   #131
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Scotland is cool too!! I'm gonna move there and tour around the country with me bagpipes! And live in a castle.....Hey that'd be awesome! Ok, I have to say something related to the topic.....ok what is the topic again?....... Oh yeah! Ok, writing serious fantasy....Yeah I think I'm gonna do that.
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Old 05-08-2002, 07:17 PM   #132
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Hey, I love Nickelback! Have you heard the new song by Chad Kroeger on the Spidey soundtrack? It rocks!! [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]

Do you guys know any other places to read/post fanfic (besides this site, I mean). The stuff I've read here is great, but I was just wondering...?

O, and thanx, littlemanpoet! [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img] I really like it here, everyone is so friendly, unlike some other boards I've been on. People can be, and usually are, really mean.
[img]smilies/frown.gif[/img]

[ May 08, 2002: Message edited by: Laiedheliel ]
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Old 05-08-2002, 09:15 PM   #133
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I know!!!!!!! That song is awesome!!!! And Chad is soooo hot.....that would be awesome if you're from Vancouver! AAAAHHHH maybe you saw them!!!!! Ok, I'm just working myself up now. Oh! I saw them once in concert at the Hammerstien Ballroom in NYC...damn they were awesome!!! And Saliva and Default were like opening acts and they were awesome too, but I mean, come on, NO ONE compares to Nickelback!!

Ok, I know only one site where they have some stories sent in by people and stuff, well I have so many websites that I keep in my favorites box thingy but one of them has that kinda thing, what I think your looking for. It's.....http://www.tolkientrail.com
That's actually a pretty good website! Ok, e-mail me or instant message me if you wanna talk about Nickelback or want more websites-I got a lot more websites! My e-mail address is Marie385@aol.com and that's the same for instant message. Actually I have an aim sn too. It's LotR29. Talk to you later people!!!!
[img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

[ May 08, 2002: Message edited by: Lothiriel Silmarien ]
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Old 05-08-2002, 11:23 PM   #134
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No, I don't live in Vancouver, I live in Edmonton, Alberta. But they grew up in Alberta so kudos to me! [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img] Yes, I do like Nickelback, they're the only kind of "that" band I can listen to. [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]

Other fanfic sites? Uh...fanfiction.net? Hehe. Go to the Lord of the Rings section. There are some GREAT ones there! Some suggested authors:

Thundera Tiger (awesome...just awesome)
Pachelbel (she has a Glorfindel fic!! [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img])
Mary-Lou (great for a good laugh!!)

I know lots of good authors and fics on that site. Just ask and I shall bestow all my wisdom!! ^.^
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Old 05-09-2002, 12:03 AM   #135
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Greetings, people. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
Are any of you writing serious fantasy?
Very much so(though I'm more of a thinker then a writer at the moment)

how have you dealt with the temptation to be imitative of Tolkien?
I get rid of everthing I have thought of, and start over.

How long have you been working on your story, and why?
About two years, and because I enjoy it.

What pitfalls have you faced and how have you overcome them - or not?
Well, copying others, (I told you how I got rid of them up above)
and lack of plots, which I overcome by doing more thinking.

I hope to continue having discussions with you guys, and I hope I'm accepted. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

See ya,
~M
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Old 05-09-2002, 10:24 AM   #136
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Welcome to the Downs, Morquesse. We try to keep a high standard of courtesy here, so fear not, friend.

What kind of writing do you do?

What's your thinking process like after you've "chucked it all"?

The most basic elements of plot are conflict and goals. Come up with a big enough conflict, or problem to solve, or wrong to be righted, and you'll find yourself neck deep in plot.

Happy writing (and thinking)!
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Old 05-09-2002, 10:50 AM   #137
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in a daring attempt to tackle the originality line AND the Canadian tangent, here's advice on "copying" from one of my major writing influences -- a musician, but it's easily applicable to any artform.

The best way to develop an orginal style, he said, was not to copy one artist, but to copy twenty... then he adds with a grin, "I copied a hundred!" (N. Peart, RUSH) People today can look at my artwork and tell me what type of comics i read/watched when young, they can see the echoes of each different influence and also the results of the synthesis of all of them. In that way the whole is greater than the sum of all the parts.

Heck, coming up in my plot is a pivotal line drawn straight from a Conan Meets Elric book i read some 25 years ago and have never seen again. Why pay homage to that concept with my own twist on it? 'cause i like it, and it fits!

This is a really good forum, so let me put a twist on littlemanpoet's topic:

"are you writing fantasy seriously"

in the case that most if not all of us are putting no small amount of time and effort into our tales, i'd have to say that we are!

s.t.
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Old 05-09-2002, 11:36 AM   #138
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Thanx for the welcome, LittleManPoet! [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

What kind of writing do you do?
I haven't got a style yet, if that'a what you mean?

What's your thinking process like after you've "chucked it all"?
(I've only done it about twice, and the second time more successful) I make a list of what I REALLY like, as oppose to using other authors stuff that they made that sounds really neat.
Example: I like Tolkien's Dwarves, but I don't really care for dwarves in general, exept for his, so I pick something that I liked from the start.

Happy writing,and thanks for your advice! [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]
~M
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Old 05-09-2002, 01:53 PM   #139
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First, I just gotta say something. Thinhyandoiel- That's so awesome!!!!!!!! Your from the same place that Chad and Mike Kroeger were raised, and I'm pretty sure Ryan too but not sure about Nik. AHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now I'm just acting like a retarded teeny bopper or something. But Nickelback isn't pop music though. (thank God!!!)Ok, now that I completly forgot what I was going to say.....oh yeah! Ok, I'm gonna go check out those websites, thanks!!!!! [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 05-09-2002, 04:16 PM   #140
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Yea, Saxony Tarn! Hear, Hear! You are so right about sources and originality. Copy a hundred, copy a thousand sources, inside of fantasy and outside. Borrow from every source, be ruled by none!
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Old 05-09-2002, 05:06 PM   #141
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|_|) <-- It comes in pints, Nar, and this one's for you!

Indeed, when i manage to get some fanfic up to balance out the free hand with which i've been writing reviews for the pieces i've found worthy of a second read up there, you'll probably be able to pick out more than a few influences. And if you e-mail me and say, for example, "ah ha, i bet you grew up reading ElfQuest, Anne McCaffrey, and Savage Sword of Conan when your mother wasn't looking", i'll grin and take it as a compliment!

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Old 05-09-2002, 07:24 PM   #142
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RE: Nickelback, Chad's hotness, etc... these are way off-topic. Take such conversation private, please.

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Old 05-09-2002, 10:16 PM   #143
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Ah, sorry Mister Underhill!! I'll remember that. [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]

Mae govannen Morquesse! Welcome to the Downs! Hope you enjoy your deadness as much as the rest of us! [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

Saxony Tarn:
"Are you writing fantasy seriously?"
O.o that IS a twist on the original subject..and very clever might I add! I'd have to say sometimes yes, and sometimes no. And that makes me want to kick myself. Some of the latest chapters I have written...I wasn't INTO them, if you follow me. But, once you get me editing, watch out cuz I leave no detail alone! Heheh.

It's nice to think that all of our favourite authors were serious about their work. I highly doubt that if Tolkien wasn't serious about LOTR or the Hobbit, it wouldn't have turned out as great as it did. (Or maybe it would have...maybe he was just plain brilliant and didn't have to really try...O.o...I'm jealous!! [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img])
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Old 05-10-2002, 04:40 AM   #144
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Hi, Morquesse, it was really an open-ended question. What do you like to write, dialogue? narrative? battle scenes? descriptions of the places? poetry? myth? folk tale? etc.

Anybody else who wants to respond to this new question, feel free, of course. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

As for me, I was told way back in '86 that I had a gift for dialogue and needed to work on my description so I really did a lot of dialogue and worked on the description, and my writer's group has been encouraging me to cut cut cut unnecessary dialogue and scale back on the description. Ah, me. They're right, of course. What I really like writing is mythic stuff from prehistory, like origins stories in the deeps of time before the Goths came out of Scandinavia.
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Old 05-10-2002, 06:55 AM   #145
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Hey, good question. I must have missed it. In my real world meets twilight zone stories, my characters are in a bad place telling stories to keep their souls alive-- ex, my little old lady in a nursing home is telling stories to keep ownership of her life, but she keeps getting interrupted *would do mad smiley here but it would be too harsh, what's kinda mad?*. She's currently duelling with the pill-dispensing lady, and I'm trying to think of what fierce and horrible story she will deploy to fend off those pills. In my adventures in a strange place-- I guess that's fantasy-- my characters are throwing themselves at the limits of their lives. So in the first case, 'How can I stay myself?' in the second, 'I hate death/entrapment.' Those are my two themes right now.
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Old 05-10-2002, 10:25 AM   #146
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No, sorry, that was my fault. I get caught up with them sometimes. Sorry Mister Underhill!
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Old 05-10-2002, 11:05 AM   #147
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I sometimes have trouble describing things properly. I want to describe things so I'm sure the reader will "see" the place, person etc., but then, I'm a bit afraid of being too describing in my writing, something I think Tolkien overdid a few times. He could use half a page to describe a tree. OK, not exactly true, but you know what I mean, right? [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img] If you overdo it, it tends to get boring, and then some ppl will skip through the text and perhaps miss something of importance. I think it can be difficult to find the line. How do you know when it's enough or too much? I mean, I've SEEN the places I write about (in dreams) and I want my reader to see them as well, not to skip pages because my describtions are too thouroughly.

[ May 10, 2002: Message edited by: Maikadilwen ]
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Old 05-10-2002, 12:23 PM   #148
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I think I like to do dialogue the most. For me, it's easy to do, and it can be interesting. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

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originaly by Maikedilwen
I sometimes have trouble describing things properly. I want to describe things so I'm sure the reader will "see" the place, person etc., but then, I'm a bit afraid of being too describing in my writing, something I think Tolkien overdid a few times. He could use half a page to describe a tree. OK, not exactly true, but you know what I mean, right? If you overdo it, it tends to get boring, and then some ppl will skip through the text and perhaps miss something of importance. I think it can be difficult to find the line. How do you know when it's enough or too much? I mean, I've SEEN the places I write about (in dreams) and I want my reader to see them as well, not to skip pages because my describtions are too thouroughly.
I haven't done very many, but I would think that you should do some describtions, but not so many that it does not leave room for imagination.
Just a thought,
~M

[ May 10, 2002: Message edited by: Morquesse ]
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Old 05-10-2002, 04:51 PM   #149
Saxony Tarn
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Description's one thing -- what i call my "Steinbeck" style is another. (i don't quite know how that particular author came to be linked with it, but the idea was that it was supposed to be high, mighty, pompous and grandiose. Although i've never needed a page to describe the average tree. A particularly salient specimen that should have plot value to justify it, maybe.)

Problem i have is, i'm also a bit of an artist in my own mind, and i want to be able to describe, say, a character's costume and gear well enough so that another artist friend could sketch it and come up with something relatively close to what i'd have in my own sketchbook ...which reminds me, i need to do just such reference sketches for my latest project, it helps keep ME consistent as well, and that brings me to

Inconsistency, which is another thing -- this isn't Toon, so characters shouldn't be pulling suddenly-needed equipment out of extradimensional pockets and leaving us wondering where they had been keeping it for the last five chapters. (If they're wizards, of course, they might but shouldn't rely on it!) The "Conservation of Plot Points" Rule is one fact-checking thing i subject my drafts to; its main thrust is that if it's introduced, it's clear to the reader, and likewise that nothing mentioned is left unaccounted-for - unless, for example, it is intended to be a set-up for a sequel. Some readers are like that and love nothing more than pointing out to you that, say, Poughkeepsie is in New York, not New Jersey, so in anticipation of those types i tend to be one myself when crafting something that might be read by others.

Sparkling Repartee also has its well-deserved high seat at the table, so let me throw this chunk of meat out:

What way of developing characters works best for you? Action? Forced Cooperation? Psychological / Conversational interaction?

i favor throwing a few more-or-less-unlikely types together, giving them a situation to deal with, and seeing how they react to each other -- quite often they surprise me; act on their own initiative before i'd planned for them to do a given thing, reveal depths & layers to their makeup that i hadn't figured them for having and such. For example, several characters in various stories have "come out" in the process of writing, and i usually look back at 'em & find that it was a logical development, though i hadn't envisioned them that way at first. Do any of you have characters like that -- that being, characters that get up off the page and exercise Free Will of their own? And do you beat them back down into submission or just stand back & roll with it?

This becomes more of a challenge in some ways to do with a borrowed character - for the stock example here, a Tolkein character you've borrowed for fanfic - because then you're the actor who's been handed a script, and it's your task to extrapolate, given what you can infer from the main story, how that character might react to what you're subjecting him/her to. Example from my own project: just last night a certain borrowed Tolkein character felt that his extensive combat expertise wasn't getting the proper amount of deference from the leader of the party he'd found himself in, so he decided to pull rank on her -- far sooner than i'd expected him to, eh, cross swords with anyone in the party, and, given the approaching Orcs i'd just mentioned a paragraph back, at the most inconvenient moment possible. After going back and reading the exchange of barbed dialogue that ensued and hasty compromise that resulted, i thought, "Yeah, that is very much in character for him, in fact i can see *actor's name deleted* delivering those lines with just the right touch of chauvenistic S.O.B." ...and i now figure this as the beginning of a beautiful love/hate relationship!

Anyone else have some memorable character-development experiences to share?

|_|) |_|) |_|) <-- a round for all on this thread, from newcomers to charter members. Fill w/ your favorite virtual bard-oil beverage and enjoy!

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(and here i was worried when the Elf suddenly got all attitudinal on me...!!)
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Old 05-10-2002, 09:06 PM   #150
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Maikadilwen-- Good thoughts on description. I too feel it's very important to describe things-- and you see it so vividly in your mind when your writing/making it up, don't you? You're right about Tolkien overwriting a bit-- but I like it anyway. Check out the 'Middle-Earth comes to life' thread for some Tolkien descriptions. As for finding that line, it depends on what sounds right to you, so try reading it aloud to yourself to activate your 'inner ear,' so to speak. You'll know what you like.

Saxony Tarn-- Whoa! I'm still reeling from that last round you got me! I broke out my friend's homebrew for your toast, which I sipped out of my tea cup-- pinky properly extended, of course. Lucky I saved half the bottle in my refrigerator. I must have psychic-ly anticipated I'd be having another! Where's my tea cup? Oh, here it is. Have a tea cup of Ale yourself. @\_/
Sorry it's not a pint, we only have tea cups here. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

As for characters breaking out and surprising you, that means the writing is working, you lucky dog. Glad to hear it. Yeah, it happens to me too. Just today a character who is supposed to break my hero's heart turned out nicer than I meant her to be and gave herself a down-to-earth nickname that totally changed my feelings about her, thereby wrecking my plot plans. The best experience I had was in the middle of an angst-ridden real-world story chock full of symbolism. I was writing away and suddenly I couldn't-- take-- the-- pain-- anymore, then I realized, 'I'm the author, I don't have to put up with this,' so I broke into the story via brackets and told the heroine, 'I'll save you!' Then I blew a hole in the airplane and sucked her whining fiancee out into bluespace-- Yeahh!!! (She wasn't hurt, SHE was wearing her seatbelt.) It greatly improved the story but it sort of wrecked all the symbolism. [img]smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]

[ May 10, 2002: Message edited by: Nar ]
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Old 05-10-2002, 10:50 PM   #151
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Sorry Mister Underhill, I'll be good. [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img] [img]smilies/evil.gif[/img]

I love to write anything, and in all sorts of ways. I am better at narratives and descriptions, so I tend to sway towards them, and also to avoid excess dialogue. Sometimes I don't have anything for my characters to say! [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 05-11-2002, 05:11 AM   #152
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Quote:
I sometimes have trouble describing things properly. I want to describe things so I'm sure the reader will "see" the place, person etc., but then, I'm a bit afraid of being too describing in my writing, something I think Tolkien overdid a few times. He could use half a page to describe a tree. OK, not exactly true, but you know what I mean, right? If you overdo it, it tends to get boring, and then some ppl will skip through the text and perhaps miss something of importance. I think it can be difficult to find the line. How do you know when it's enough or too much? I mean, I've SEEN the places I write about (in dreams) and I want my reader to see them as well, not to skip pages because my describtions are too thouroughly.
Me too. I started a description and it just went on and on. The stupid thing is it was all necessary to the story, all relevant. If I cut any out the things later on in the story wouldn't make sense. In the end the description was about 3 A4 pages, six sides, that has to be too long!

I really wish I had more time to post now! I have so much to write here but no time! stupid exams, can't some one postpone them by a few months?! [img]smilies/frown.gif[/img]
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Old 05-11-2002, 05:26 AM   #153
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Writing descriptions of fantasy characters presents a unique challenge because you evoke archetypes. The moment you have done this in your story, you have immediately filled your reader's mind with a host of connections the reader may be hardly aware of. The challenge is to keep from messing with the archetype too much. On a more basic level, some readers would rather supply hair and eye color themselves and practically resent an author insisting on blondeness, for example. My own story does not allow the reader this luxury. Everybody's hair and eyes are described. Maybe that's rather proprietary of me, but I insist.

In my latest rewrite of my first chapter, I tried just naming a thing with which most people (in my country/region) are familiar, such as species of trees, birds, mammals, which seems to work because the protagonist is in the forest. So I don't have to describe the bird - the species name serves as an adequate 'tag' to evoke the image in the reader's mind. Now, the difficulty with this comes when you subcreate a whole new creature in your fantasy world. Then you have to decide just how much description is necessary. I would lean on as little as possible to evoke the salient nature of the being.

Saxony Tarn, your "conservation of plot points" is excellent. I've run into that any number of times, usually catching them myself in the rewrite. "Oh! That's right! He's supposed to have a bandage on his left hand the whole time! She would have noticed. He couldn't just throw a left hook." And so forth.

I've always liked developing characters through conversational interaction, but as my sympathetic writer's group have said over and over again, if it doesn't move the plot forward, the interaction tends to seem pointless, even if it's developing character. So I try to limit my dialogue to that which does. As you can probably tell, I tend to be long winded 'on paper'. So I will use action, forced cooperation, psychological interaction, and any other method that comes to hand so long as it drives the plot.

|_|) aaah! Thanks much, Saxony Tarn.

Starbreeze, my suggestion regarding the necessary description would be to spread it out as much as you're able through your story's action.

|_|) |_|) |_|) |_|) |_|) |_|) |_|)

Here's a go around for all. Happy quaffing and writing!
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Old 05-11-2002, 05:43 AM   #154
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Thanks Poet, but I'm too young to drink, I will settle for an orange juice though! [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 05-11-2002, 06:12 AM   #155
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Then come stay with me Starbreeze. You only have to be 18 to drink in DK. This one's on me everyone. |_|) |_|) |_|) |_|) |_|)
I can easily follow you Starbreeze. I too think that 3 pages of description may be a little too much. I'm afraid of describing things to death.
I have described some of my characters since their looks are important for the understanding of how other characters react to them, but other not so important persons have been left to the reader to imagine.

[ May 11, 2002: Message edited by: Maikadilwen ]
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Old 05-11-2002, 08:21 AM   #156
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The thing with descriptions, origins, cosmic histories, and overviews of the world, is that the story is initially ordered by the way the writer needed to invent it. That often means 'top-down' or chronologically from the origin. So it starts with an overview or history or the birth of the hero's great-grandfather because that's how the writer developed the story. Then, often in the rewrite the writer decides it would be better to throw the reader into the middle of the good part, and the first couple of scene-setting sections are moved down to flashbacks later in the story.

So, if you find yourself needing to reorder your story, that's good, that means you're really working it, doing sophisticated editing. (It's also good to write it perfectly the first time, so if you never need editing, don't feel bad! [img]smilies/tongue.gif[/img] )

[ May 11, 2002: Message edited by: Nar ]
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Old 05-11-2002, 09:53 AM   #157
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Sorry Maika, I'm 16, and only just that! No alcohol for a little while, I am strictly law abiding! (besides, to tell the truth, I'm not that keen on the stuff! [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img] )

By the way, I meant to say this before, thanks to everyone for supporting me when I got bullied. It is all sorted out now, the bullies have been sorted out and given suitable punishments and I have two extra battle scenes for my story. I don't know where I'm going to put them yet, so I'd better finish revising and start writing, before I loose my thread!

[ May 11, 2002: Message edited by: Starbreeze ]
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Old 05-11-2002, 12:00 PM   #158
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I love just inventing worlds and characters, and histories of those worlds. I just started writing a story in which an empire of seven worlds linked by magical rifts which is invaded by an army of evil beings - orcs, goblins, dragons and huge demons! To seal the new rift to the demon realm a band of warriors and magicians must enter into the demon realm and defeat 5 Demon Warlocks and defeat the Demon Warlord, meanwhile the armys of the empire of the 7 worlds are desperatley defending their worlds!
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Old 05-11-2002, 08:55 PM   #159
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Heheh, haven't been online for like...two days or so. Oops. I too, am only 17, so I'll pass on the beer. Enjoy yourselves though! ^.^

I have trouble describing things too. I've gotten remarks from readers asking about certain characters, towns, fields...etc. I've come to realize that, the thing is, I can SEE everything in my mind, of what everything and everyone looks like, and when I write, it's like I only write for me, so no real description is necessary. I'm working on it though. Might take a while..*sighs* oh well! Can't get good at something unless you work at it! [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]

Memorable character development experiences? YES! The main character in my story, well..I didn't know a thing about what he was like when I started writing. He was a bit sarcastic, in a smart-*** sort of way. Always saying something not to be mean, but to get a good laugh out of the others. I guess he was sort of patronizing...but his character just sort of wrote itself and then one day, someone asked about more description on that character, saying that he thought he was a skeptic. That blew me away because I never knew that my character was like that, but once I read over my story, I could see that yes, he WAS skeptic...of everything!!
Another experience I had with developing two of my characters occurred during their first meeting. It came out that they were complete opposites, they argued about everything. From parchment, to spears, to other characters...I had to put them in seperate corners!! [img]smilies/rolleyes.gif[/img]
With another character, he was not even planned to appear, he wasn't supposed to BE there. But as I was writing, I just sort of frowned, and said "And...where did you come from?" But ah well, he's there to stay. I also found out something wierd yesterday!! My characters' names sometimes mean something in their own language. But those that I just "made up" off the top of my head, don't have special meanings to them. Well, one of those names..DOES mean something. It means Wise Healing and it's EXACTLY what that character is like!!! I was a bit blown away. Heheh.

Inconsistency..how often have I struggled with that little bugger? One of my heroes just fell OFF a building, thereby breaking two of his ribs. The next day..he's strolling down the countryside. Needless to say, that got scrapped. Oops. ^.^ Heheh.

Has anyone just gotten so SICK of a character that they just can't wait to kill him/her off? Or, they make as much bad things happen to them as possible?? I was just wondering, because I feel that way sometimes. Someone told me that means you really know your characters. Someone else told me that means you're letting your feelings get in the way of your writing. What do y'all think?
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Old 05-12-2002, 04:05 AM   #160
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With another character, he was not even planned to appear, he wasn't supposed to BE there. But as I was writing, I just sort of frowned, and said "And...where did you come from?" But ah well, he's there to stay
I did the same with several of my characters. With one of them, I was talking to a friend and she said that I should have an archer in my story (she is obsessed with archery) The people in my story are peaceful, not aggressive, so I don't have archers and soldiers etc. so I had to create a new land just beyond where my people dwell. Then I made the people who lived in the new place aggressive, so that they could have archers for my friend. However, I now had to make them interact with the people I already had. So Then I had to create a main archer who would come down from that land and interact with the peaceful people. Then I thought - why would this person come down by themselves? - so I made another person.

Then some of my peaceful people had to find out about the aggressive ones so I had to create another character who was wise in the lore of these people, and all people, who could tell them, so through the demand for one archer, I had to create a whole race of people, and three quite important other parts. As that part hasn't finished yet I might still create more unplanned additions to the storyline!

Quote:
Another experience I had with developing two of my characters occurred during their first meeting. It came out that they were complete opposites, they argued about everything. From parchment, to spears, to other characters...I had to put them in seperate corners!!
The same with two of my characters - Tomar and Imila - they were meant to be friends, and support each other, but they just don't get on! Every little thing they disagree about! Oh well, my story writes itself, I have no control over it anymore, I am just a tool the characters use to make their story real.


[img]smilies/rolleyes.gif[/img]
Quote:
Has anyone just gotten so SICK of a character that they just can't wait to kill him/her off? Or, they make as much bad things happen to them as possible?? I was just wondering, because I feel that way sometimes. Someone told me that means you really know your characters. Someone else told me that means you're letting your feelings get in the way of your writing. What do y'all think?
Yes. I got sick of Imila ranting and raving and going off in a strop all the time and making the hero, Tomar, feel bad. I have already decided to kill her off at the end of the story, or towards the end. She will die nobly though, she will sacrifice her life for the cause that they are fighting for. (notice I'm not giving too much away here!)
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