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Collective Writing

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This doesn''t really have anything to do with game writing but writing in general. I''m curious if there and sites out there that have the frame work to create a collectivily written world. The idea is to create body of work witten by fans for fans. The world would start with a few pieces of work. But then anyone could submitted a piecce of work using on existing characters or based on the world. does anyone know if one these exists already or would be interested in one participating? I was thinking of near future distopian world. With powerful Corporations control whole countries like fedual lords. People with special powers are pushed to the fringes of society and hunted by those in power. ----------------------------------------------------- Writer, Programer, Cook, I''m a Jack of all Trades Current Design project Chaos Factor Design Document

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I don't know whether it's been done before, but it sounds to me like the sort of thing that would have to be closely regulated to prevent the world from being filled with Golden Children and Heroes of Destiny who have no characteristics other than "superhuman fighting skills and decades of ninja training".

Aren't there MUD's out there with this element? I'm sure I heard about games where players build "rooms" for themselves. Hmm...

edit: I can't believe I spelled "ninja" wrong.

[edited by - Iron Chef Carnage on November 11, 2003 10:57:07 PM]

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Thats a tough one, either there would be have to be an approval process or free form.

The site would probably require Moderators to read over work to ensure that its not offensive or meets a certain standared. As well I think it would be a good idea to allow the creators of characters to decieded wether or not they want to approve anywork using those characters.

But overall I think it would work best free form with users submitting whatever work they create. That would create a more vibrante and fleshed out world.

Having the approval process would also be good to ensure quality, but time consuming on behalf of the approvers as well as I don''t want them to be editors, if there are to many typos then the story could be returned for editing, but I don''t want to regulate content.

Afterall in a sense its the mantra behind the idea would be "By Fans for Fans"

-----------------------------------------------------
Writer, Programer, Cook, I''m a Jack of all Trades
Current Design project
Chaos Factor Design Document

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There are lots of groups that have people roleplay in a fanfiction or crossover fanfiction world. There are other groups where people simply idolize a single character and all write stories about him and read and review each others'' stories. (They draw fanart too). There are sites where the group collects fanfiction from one or many series and provides readers a system for commenting on each others'' work - these don''t have as much of a community closeness as the other types of groups, but they have some.

But you want something more like Elfquest: Blood of Ten Chiefs or the Man-Kzin Wars, yes? Only they are online. The only one of these I know of is the Keyfiction Archive, but I''m sure there are more out there somewhere. Is it important to you that the group is or is not oriented toward collecting and publishing the stories from their collaborative world?

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Now, you call it "collective writing". Will there just be one story produced? If there''s just one final product, then participants could all submit a chapter, and then the population at large would vote on what should happen next. It removes the risk of every story ending with "Then the d00d is rilly a chich and gets out hre b00bz and all teh guys are like OMG!!!! WTF!!!!! and then the werld totally explodes! And skeletor''s like PWNED!!!!"

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Ya thats kind of what I'm going for. It would be a place for people to share work based on the created world. It would be an entirely online endevour. It would act as a place for authors that create work based on the world to show case their work. For people to read and enjoy.

There would be more then just one story, there would hopefully be many stories, who knows if got popluar enough there could be hundreds of stories making up the world. As well as art work, and maybe even a pen and paper roleplaying game.


"Then the d00d is rilly a chich and gets out hre b00bz and all teh guys are like OMG!!!! WTF!!!!! and then the werld totally explodes! And skeletor's like PWNED!!!!"

I would hope that no one would go to the trouble to write a story like that. Thats just to horrible to comprehend an entire story written like that, its just wrong. I don't know of single person who writes like that although I've only scanned a few sites where people submit there own writting. But I guess thats why moderators would be needed to read over everything submitted before it was put online...

-----------------------------------------------------
Writer, Programer, Cook, I'm a Jack of all Trades
Current Design project
Chaos Factor Design Document



[edited by - TechnoGoth on November 11, 2003 12:09:46 AM]

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See, I misunderstood your idea. I thought it would be a single, free-form storyline with multiple authors, like when stories are told a sentence at a time around the campfire. Those stories aways wind up being about farts, because that one kid who can''t come up with a good idea covers it up with vulgarity. Like the Fox network. *rimshot*

What you are describing is a dynamic universe that is created through a library of fan fiction. I like the idea, but it''s important to have a solid foundation for it. If fanfic is the only source of world elements, you''re going to have a world filled with everything that''s ever been cool anywhere else. You''ll have elves and spaceships and magic and lever-action Wnchester rifles and three suns and flappy coats and about a thousand people pulling destinies from the same eight mangas. You need a kernel of solid world on which to build.

Your dystopian future is very, very good. It allows for all manner of technology and still leaves room for super powers. You have a built-in conflict between the corporate jerks and the exile freaks, and millions of people can conceivably be caught in the middle. Excellent. Rip-off candidates include Blade Runner, Shadowrun, Akira, X-Men, Rollerball, Soylent Green, Citizen Kane, Fahrenheit 451, and scores of others. Kudos.

I advise you to either personally construct or carefully solicit construction of the first few pieces. Define big names and forces, explain the nature of the feudal corporations and "special powers". Then cut fans loose.

If this winds up happening online, post a link here so we can see how it pans out for you.

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scifi.com (the website of the Sci-Fi Channel) used to have a site where they would start a story, then you could submit another chapter (perhaps a printed page) to the story. Someone else could either submit to the premade, first chapter, or add on to yours. This would continue until you had a system like this:

Chapter 1
Chapter 2 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 2
Ch. 3 Ch. 3 Ch. 3|Ch. 3 Ch. 3|Ch. 3 Ch. 3 Ch. 3
Etc.

It was quite a fun site, and there were perhaps five or more full stories going like this at once.

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Iron Chef Carnage:

Thats what I'm going for, I'll most likely write the first seed stories and then from those hopefully the world will begin to grow.

The main complication at present other then time. Is my lack web program skills. For instance I don't even know what php is...

I'm really not sure how to go about setting the website up. Other then turning the submissions into html pages and using a system where the person emails me their work.


But I think that will work for now.



-----------------------------------------------------
Writer, Programer, Cook, I'm a Jack of all Trades
Current Design project
Chaos Factor Design Document



[edited by - TechnoGoth on November 15, 2003 6:20:25 PM]

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I don''t have a lot of experience with this sort of thing, so maybe this problem has been addressed before, but the issue I foresee is organization. I think your plan of getting submissions via e-mail is going to be insanely labor-intensive, but it offers a unique opportunity to organize. You''ll have to see how that works out.

Here''s what I think the project should look like. Feel free to totally disregard my suggestions.

On a given page, the selected "chapter" should be shown, in simple, easy-to-read text. Above it (or perhaps in a side frame) should be the path taken to get there, much like the little path at the top of this forum that says "GameDev.Net Forums > Game Writing > Collective Writing".

The titles of the chapters should somehow relate to the central event or condition they are focussed on, like "Jimmy''s bleeding" or "The bus crashes" so that the little map can be read as a sort of summary of the story thus far, e.g. "Corporate Espionage > Jaina, the Best Hacker in the Resistance > Jaina''s Mission > The Opposition > Getting In > A Clever Disguise > Enemy HQ > Central Control > Glitch in the System > Mission Accomplished > Captured! > Escape" and then the story is about tunnel-digging or keycard stealing or something.

At the bottom, the stories that have been submitted as sequels to this could be listed, with characteristically descriptive titles and perhaps a small summary or sales pitch by the author.

Obviously, that would be kind of a pain to build manually for each page, but if you could get some training or help with coding or maybe find a similar system in the world that you can use, it would be sweet.

On a side note, you may want to consider letting authors "lock" their submissions against further sequels. I was just thinking that it could suck to have a story with four or five denouments. Just a thought.

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Microsoft PowerPoint can be used, if you have it, to create a great site like this. Perhaps you can have an e-mail form on the page, that sends submissions to you. Then you can read them over (that could be the worst part of it all) and put either all of them (the ones that you consider appropriate, that is) or get rid of bad ones and put what''s left in a text box. You can set an opening frame and have it link to the continuations. Just a thought. This way you don''t have to worry about all that aggrivating HTML programming.

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Powerpoint can do that? Sweet. How difficult is it to work that out?

It still requires poor Technogoth to read them all. But I guess that might be the way to do it. He could solicit help from volunteer "administrators", to spread the work around.

Just be careful with the censorship. Stop the stupid stories, but let the bad ones through. Just my 2¢.

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powerpoint? I think you mean frontpage. Thats the webdesign software that came with my microsoft office, powerpoint makes slides and presentations.

I don''t plan to edit, or censor submissions, I''ll mainly read them and post them on the site by hand, or reject them and send a reason to the author.

-----------------------------------------------------
Writer, Programer, Cook, I''m a Jack of all Trades
Current Design project
Chaos Factor Design Document

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You can set up a hyperlink on powerpoint slides by making an object (for example a text box or something) and have it link to another slide, or another page. I think you should be able to place a Powerpoint document (.ppt, I think) as an embedded object in a web page, so that the user doesn''t have to link to many different pages, just click on the links. That way you eliminate the annoying href crap (it''s been a looooong time since I''ve tried to actually program a web page because I would have nothing to put on it). That way you don''t have a site name like http://www.mypage.com/stories/abc123456789012345.htm. Of course, that would allow for plenty of submissions, but having a fairly large Powerpoint document could do the trick as well (and it is easier than programing all that annoying code!) You should be able to right click on an object and select a hyperlink or link option, it will prompt you to save before trying to link your document, then give you a "link set up" prompt.

I don''t have Powerpoint in front of me right now, so I can''t say for sure that''s how to do it, but in Sixth grade, using Powerpoint on Office 97, I made a castle project which had sounds and images, all without code. It wasn''t that impressive for a computer project (I was in sixth grade, after all), but it did the trick. You could click on various spots on the castle and it would go to a slide which explained more about it, and then go back, although it was something of a last minute thing, as my original plan wasn''t working out.

Anyway, I hope that helps. A Powerpoint file can get fairly big fast, though, so you may have to go to a format using hundreds of different webpages. I have never used Frontpage, so I don''t know if that would be just as easy.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
(This is OrionX103. I don''t want to bother getting into my e-mail inbox for my password right now.)

I''ve thought about doing something similar to this: If you have a group of, say, three people, each of you would make a main hero and a main villain. Then, based on what you created, you would format a world and plot around them. After that, you (as a group) write the story or whatever it is you''re working on. I think it''d be fun, as long as you got a diverse group of people. You could also assign the "types" of character each person has to make. For instance, Alpha would have to make sorcerers or sorceresses, Beta would have to make mechanical or machine-based characters, and Gamma would have to make paladins or non-magical fighters.

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(OK, I finally got my password.)

Another thought I had quite some time ago: I thought it''d be kinda cool to get a few artists to draw monster or demon representations of themselves, then have an outside artist combine the monsters into one. I got the idea while watching Yu-Gi-Oh. Heh, I''m a child. And I guess this a bit off the topic.

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While we''re off topic, I like your site Orionx, although I only looked at it for a short period of time. I can now find out what all this fuss is over Yu-Gi-Oh since I now have Cartoon Network (Just got it yesterday!!! ) For the first time, sadly, I found joy in watching Pokemon... Anyway, I just wanted to give this thread a bump, as I love writing, and together we could always make something like this. After all, Orionx, you do make websites {rubs hands together with a look of evil planning in his eyes}... I won''t force you to do anything, but if you want to, it would be nice to have a page to do this, if you have the time. I''m willing to help, if you want it. Oh, and when you say "child", what exactly do you mean, as you said you spent several years RPing on Yahoo, or something like that (sorry if I''m misquoting you, but I closed the window). If you hadn''t said anything, I wouldn''t have known. Oh, and yes, Angelfire should die.

____________________________________________________________

official Necromancer of GameDev forums Game Writing section

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What I meant by saying "I''m a child" was that I''m a child at heart, or childish. Examples of this are my liking of childish things: Yu-Gi-Oh!, very little (and I stress little) Pokemon stuff, Jackie Chan Adventures, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, sentai... I could go on, but I''d just embarrass myself. As for my actual age, I''m sixteen (as of yesterday).

The reason I like most of these are because of their influence in my writing. I love coming up with things to do with all the magical items in MOTU and Jackie Chan Adventures and sentai and so on. I often base my characters after warped versions of other characters. I have a special love for villains, like Skeletor. I''m no good at creating heroes, in my opinion.

As for the collective writing and coming up with a website, I would be more prone to come up with characters than to write. Writing becomes tedious with me after a while, and I simply find it hard to finish. But I''d be glad to provide characters, items, weapons and ideas to anyone who''d like to use them their own story.

And thanks for the complement on my website. I thought it was a badly-designed website, but it was the best I could get a website to look and it, in my opinion, has easy navigation, so that''s a plus. I could probably do another similar if people''d like it to be the home of any collective writing that we, members of GD.Net, do.

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Cool, thank you. For some reason, I am finding enjoyment in watching Pokemon, although I don''t know why. Perhaps it''s just the fact that it''s anime? I haven''t really watched Yu-Gi-Oh yet, but I will soon. Happy Birthday, by the way, and I, also, find I love doing villains more than heros, although my weak point is usually in character creation.

Oh, by the way, I''m seventeen and I still have more fun playing with kids about 7 years younger than me then with kids my age. I don''t know why, I just do. So I guess we are similar in the child at heart part. Well, I don''t know if this is a good place to start a conversation, but... How is your school year going so far? I don''t know why, but I''m in a somewhat talkative mood.

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official Necromancer of GameDev forums Game Writing section

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quote:
Original post by RichardMV
Cool, thank you. For some reason, I am finding enjoyment in watching Pokemon, although I don't know why. Perhaps it's just the fact that it's anime? I haven't really watched Yu-Gi-Oh yet, but I will soon. Happy Birthday, by the way, and I, also, find I love doing villains more than heros, although my weak point is usually in character creation.


I have to do a revamp of my RPG Resource anyway, so maybe I'll just use the layout of that site for the collective writing one and use my new layout for the RPG Resource.

Villains are just more interesting, and I find the fact that it's usually villains that do more in the way of changing than the heroes even more interesting. For instance, take DragonBall Z. Frieza had four forms, Cooler had six forms (two of which were shown), Cell had three forms, Buu had I don't know how many forms, Janemba had two forms, and Hildegarn had two forms. (Those are the only ones I can think of at the moment.)

quote:

Oh, by the way, I'm seventeen and I still have more fun playing with kids about 7 years younger than me then with kids my age. I don't know why, I just do. So I guess we are similar in the child at heart part. Well, I don't know if this is a good place to start a conversation, but... How is your school year going so far? I don't know why, but I'm in a somewhat talkative mood.



I tend to seek out people my age with similar interests. Those are usually the type of people that like to write and have the ability to do so somewhat well. This rule doesn't apply to everyone, needless to say.

School's not going well. I had D's in two classes last nine weeks. I'm grounded, and because of that, I shouldn't be on the computer right now. ^_^ I'm going to create a signiture with my e-mail, AIM, and site soon so people can just IM me or e-mail me when ever. Until I do so, here ya go:
AIM: OrionX103
E-mail: orionx103@yahoo.com

[edited by - orionx103 on December 5, 2003 5:10:42 PM]

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That''s too bad. And I disobay like that sometimes as well, although my mom rarely ever grounds me, just tells me I can''t use the computer or PlayStation 2 . I also find I get along well with people of similar interests, but I really have a hard time connecting to kids my age for some reason. Also, my high school is about thirty minutes away from my house, so all my friends live far, far away. I think my problem with connecting may have resulted from my alienation from my class, as I was the one who was picked on in my class of twenty kids. I am quite different from most of my peers, so I often do feel somewhat alienated, and have a hard time finding people to associate with. For some reason, I get along best with a kid who just turned ten. I almost feel like a brother to him a lot of the time. Anyway, thank you for sharing all that information, I enjoy getting to know the people I share the forum with, even though there is probably a better place to socialize. You can find that information on the profile part of everyone''s post, so you don''t need to post your e-mail unless you have chosen to keep it hidden. I don''t have AIM, but I guess e-mail would work just as well. Hopefully your grades go up this quarter, and hopefully your mom calms down and... un-grounds you. For now, just try not to get caught and have a nice week.

Richard

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official Necromancer of GameDev forums Game Writing section

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I''m going to say this: I think it''d be a niftycool project if a group of writers got together and worked on or put in on a story. Some of you may not agree; hey, whatever. I''m volunteering to webmaster a site for it and pitch in myself. If you think you''d like to, respond, e-mail me, or IM me (OrionX103).

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