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Durakken

Need some topics/ideas

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forum ate a better post than this...and I don't feel like retyping...ironically.

Basically I want to write on random topics and ideas...however coming up with those topics and ideas myself would slow the process of what I want to do down and i'd also likely subconsciously reject topics which I don't want to happen...

So could you guys post some ideas/topics to write about... It can be mundane or fantastic... a single word or a sentence or two... I'll work from anything in the list.

Starting Monday I'm going to try to write on at least one of the topics/ideas each day and probably get more than one done a day.

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"h[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]owever coming up with those topics and ideas myself would slow the process..."[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]You don't have a huge pile handy already? I find myself depressed that I have more ideas than time.[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]I suspect you do but don't realize you do; you must think about something or have opinions on something? Start there. Does not have to be fiction; can be "literary non-fiction".[/size][/color][size="3"][color="#1C2837"] [/color][/size]
[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Anyway, I'll throw out some.[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]-A society doesn't have any formal hierarchies, but they have a central computer called the Delegator that knows all, sees all, and can give instructions to people or solicit input by calling their mobiles. It can even ask people to reprogram itself, but usually (for example) knows there's a pipe to fix somewhere and knows someone who has the appropriate talent and free time. So our protagonist wakes up, has his coffee, and receives a call...[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]-"You're the last person in the world. There's a knock at the door..."[/size][/color]

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[quote name='sunandshadow' timestamp='1310191104' post='4833003']
You know they sell whole books of writing prompts? I saw three different ones last time I was at the bookstore.
[/quote]

I don't read many books and even if I did the closest bookstore i know of is 10 miles away and I don't drive ^.^


[quote name='JoeCooper' timestamp='1310228278' post='4833109']
"h[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]owever coming up with those topics and ideas myself would slow the process..."[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]You don't have a huge pile handy already? I find myself depressed that I have more ideas than time.[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]I suspect you do but don't realize you do; you must think about something or have opinions on something? Start there. Does not have to be fiction; can be "literary non-fiction".[/size][/color][size="3"] [/size]
[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Anyway, I'll throw out some.[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]-A society doesn't have any formal hierarchies, but they have a central computer called the Delegator that knows all, sees all, and can give instructions to people or solicit input by calling their mobiles. It can even ask people to reprogram itself, but usually (for example) knows there's a pipe to fix somewhere and knows someone who has the appropriate talent and free time. So our protagonist wakes up, has his coffee, and receives a call...[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]-"You're the last person in the world. There's a knock at the door..."[/size][/color]
[/quote]

I have a tons of ideas for projects but that the thing... they are for projects. I want to stay away from those projects for the most part for now.

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[quote name='JoeCooper' timestamp='1310261458' post='4833217']
So write tiny glimpses. Give some feedback on my pitches and maybe I'll come up with something else?
[/quote]

So I decided to write on taking the "You're the last person in the world. Then there is a know on the door..." not as the beginning sentence but as the general concept.... this is obviously not a complete tale, but I can't think of where to go from here at the moment... well no here not sci-fi-ish at least so I stopped for now and I'm gonna let my brain rest for a bit. This is the longest piece of anything I've written in a while and it is around 1700 words and took about 2.5 hours to write. I'll probably write more later, but once today is over I think I'd prefer moving to a different topic than keep going with this even if it hasn't ended yet.

Anyways... Here's what I wrote. Tell me what you think...

I'm the last man on Earth, or at leastI believe I am. I haven't checked the whole world obviously, buteverywhere I looked there wasn't a trace of another person. I don'tknow how it happened. Like a lot of my life, it happened while I wasasleep. At first, I didn't notice anything. The world was automated,so the I didn't really notice that no one replied to me on thevarious forums I visit. I just figured it was one of the low pointsthat ever forum goes through from time to time. And of course the TVstations kept broadcasting new stuff for a few days, but once nothingnew was broadcasting it hit me that I hadn't heard from anyone in aweek and I decided to go take a look around.

There was nothing out there, but aplethora of survival horror and documentaries about the world aftermankind had prepared me to expect some great disaster. Those firstoutings I had brought a sword or two with me, looked for guns andammo, grabbed food from the local markets, but I found nothing reallyout there all too dangerous. My first instinct was to stay within thecity. I was safe there. No reason to leave what seemed to beperfectly safe place. That thought lasted only a few moments asthoughts stemming from those documentaries reminded me that theelectricity, water, and food supplies were likely to run outeventually out soon. They may have already shut down and there was noway that I could get gas indefinitely for cars. It was made starklyclear that I had to find some place that could sustain itself for aslong as I needed, no matter how futile it might seem.

I gathered up every kinda of seed Icould find, packed up my belongings and left the city I was born andraised in for an area that likely was filled with solar powered. Thatwould, at least for as long as i could survive, provide me withentertainment. Once I found and settled down in a nice house with apre-made garden and solar panels installed I connected as manycomputers as I could find to the internet, wrote a script, and hadthem download as much information about how to construct and repairthe various things I would need. There was no telling how long thenetwork would last so the important stuff came first, but that didn'tmean I couldn't download some frivolous things as well.

You might think that the lack ofcontact with other humans and the futility of everything would keepme from being happy or content, but to be honest, things reallydidn't change all that much, and the lack of other people anddistractions gave me time to read, watch, and play a lot of the mediathat I had wanted to, but other things kept me from doing so. It alsoprovided me time to create all the various works that I had wanted tocreate. Unfortunately, no one was there to share with, but that wasno reason to not do it. Of course, with all this time and the workthat was needed to maintain my lttle place I got in shape, bettershape than I had ever been. I guess if you consider that I willprobably live longer because of this it's an odd sort of blessing.

Things went well for years, a timethat I'd surely have lost track of if not for the computers that keptthe time. I was comfortable in my new life. It didn't bother me thatthere was no one to share it with and the fact of the matter was,even if there was someone else remaining in the world we likelywouldn't be able to communicate given that they'd come from anotherpart of the world. I know this a bit wrong, and perhaps it is thefirst signs that I'm going insane, but I have to say, the world is apretty perfect place form me now, given the situation. I'm contentwith my world. Alone filled with knowledge and time to play with. Andthen, there was a knock on the door.

I knew there was probably no onethere. It's not like this the first time this has happened. A knockon the door. You'd be surprised how often that happens. There arelots of things that create a similar noise or hit the door as timegoes on. You get used to it after a while, the rush and theexcitement that comes with the thought that there might be someonethere that I could share... everything with. Those aren't the onlythoughts though, there is always the fear that who ever it is isn'tso in love with the idea of sharing this world. It would be fittingthat the human race so defined by war would end when given the wholeworld to divide among two people they would end up killing each otherand lose it all. The hopes and the fears in the end didn't matterthough.

The trained behavior of answering thedoor every time I heard a knock took a while to get over, but I didget over it eventually. Behavior changes after so many times of noone being there and logically, the reality of the matter is, in thisworld no one would knock on a door. They'd just enter and search forany thing that could be useful to them. They'd take what they wantedlike I did when this all began. There was also the risk that, likeme, they'd be carrying weapons, be on edge, and a potentially greatthing could turn to disaster rapidly. i wouldn't be shocked. Itwouldn't be a big surprise that it ended in such a way, but by thispoint I have studied up on the history of man and likely become themost studied on the subject of mankind. It's what we do... did. Wesought to improve our own lives while destroying the worlds of thosearound us. Some of us rose above that. Not many, and when they didthey were often stopped before long.

The knock on the door came again. Ihadn't checked before. No point. There wasn't going to be anythingthere. I've looked thousands of times in the past. Nothing was everthere. Why waste my time answering a knock now? But then camesomething I was not expecting, a voice.

"Hello? Anyone there?"

I shot out of my seat, out of my dazeof thoughts about the consequences of what this might mean to me andthe future of mankind. I didn't care. I wanted to see another livingface. A face that wasn't an echo from the past. Hurriedly, I ran tothe door, tripping over a few things that lay between me and thedoor. Why keep a clean house all the time when no one else was thereto tell you how much of a slob you are. You'd think with the rush Iwas in to get to the door I would have just opened it, but those oldbehavior came back. The nervousness of meeting someone that couldchange your life and whether or not you'd make a good impression camerushing back. I stood there at the door, took a deep breath, composedmyself, and turned the handle.

The door cracked open as I pulled itslowly, the fresh air blew in. The brightness of the light made meclose my eyes briefly, but then my eyes adjusted and there before mewas a young half naked woman. I must be dreaming. No, not that typeof dream. I'd taken to not wearing many clothes myself over theyears. I had to be careful about what I powered as over exerting thesolar panels could damage them and then I'd have no power so the airconditioning almost never came on. It seems like she had come to thesame conclusion, that the less clothes in the heat,the better. Shehad a big smile on her face and to me it was brighter than the sun inthe sky.

I stumbled upon my words as I invitedher in, kicking aside the small messes that were in the way beforegoing to grab some nice cold, pure water. I didn't know whathardships she had had to deal with in the last few years, but I hadalways figured that the if there were others alive out there thatthey likely had a harder time getting by. Not because of mymechanical expertise or my physical readiness. Had someone asked meif I was going to able to survive or be in such luxary as the worldfalls apart around me I'd have said I'd be among the first to die.The comfort that I now lived in came not from any physical readinessas all the supplies I needed were pretty easily accessible when Ididn't have to compete with others. It was the fact that I knew whereto look and what to look for that allowed me to sustain myselfeasily.

As I presented the pure water to herin a clean cup the young woman seemed to be rather surprised. Shedidn't seem to be scared, but she also didn't seem to be open. Sheseemed to be assessing the situation, assessing what I might do.That's not all that unexpected. I don't know who she is, where shecame from, or what she wants from me. It didn't escape me that shebeing here also meant that there will be hope for humanity for a fewmore years, but I don't think that would be a wise thing to bring upat the moment. I don't want to scare her. I don't want to make herthink that I have ill intentions. Not that it really matters. I'm bigand strong enough to do whatever I wanted with her, but is thatsomething I could live with? Is it something that the world thatmight be reborn from those actions could live with? perhaps aftermany generations and when history becomes mythology it may, but thenthe world may never forget. I sat down across from her, my eyesremain transfixed. I think we were both waiting for the other to makethe first move. It was sort of like being on a first date, neitherperson knowing what the others' reactions might be and not wanting toscare them off.

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Good work. If you can write that much daily, you're on the right track. But on the next round you'll need a whole story.

A lot of work, including deciding whether sentences actually belong in the completed work or not, [i]has to be done in relation to the whole[/i]. If you're to stop here, you actually can scrub it all the way down to the original pitch, which was written as a joke (it's an old one) as the "shortest sci-fi story". Other super shorts include these hits:

"For sale. Baby shoes. Never used." (Six words.)

"[color="#333333"][font="arial, helvetica, clean, sans-serif"][size="2"]Oh my God, I'm pregnant. I wonder who the father is." (Short story involving sex, religion and mystery.)[/size][/font][/color]
[font="arial, helvetica, clean, sans-serif"] [/font]
[font="arial, helvetica, clean, sans-serif"][size="3"][color="#333333"][size="2"]So on the next round, try to write a whole story. I can't judge much except for little things in prose. Nevertheless, let's look at little things in prose...[/size][/color][/size][/font]
[font="arial, helvetica, clean, sans-serif"] [/font]
[color="#333333"][font="arial, helvetica, clean, sans-serif"][size="2"]"[/size][/font][/color][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]She didn't seem to be scared, but she also didn't seem to be open. She seemed to be assessing the situation, assessing what I might do. That's not all that unexpected."[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]These are all [i]judgments[/i]. To be effectively engaging, it should be possible to read into a statement further. Judgments can tell us about [i]the judge[/i], in this case the narrater. It's very hard to read into these, though. What do they really say besides the obvious? If I write something like:[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]"She glanced around room, looking at me, my Gamecube, back at me, and around the kitchenette I built around my chill zone. She seemed startled. I didn't know what to do at all. If I could've gone back and done things differently, I probably would've put some pants on. But what's done is done."[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]One can from this infer a lot about the narrater and how he's spent his time and responded to the end of humanity. One can infer that the newcomer doesn't really know what to make of the situation at all.[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Juxtaposing the narrator's ignorance of what to do with his later assessment of what he should've done expresses the extent to which he was stunned by the situation. (Homestar Runner did a bit like this where Homestar is so excited running out to play in the snow that he forgets his pants, except this guy is wearing no pants because he took a do-what-you-feel approach to not having anyone around anymore.)[/size][/color]
[size="3"] [/size]
[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]The theme is [i]engagement.[/i][/size][/color][/size]

[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]See if you can do the next one in its entirety in under 2000 words so that elements can be seen in relation to a whole. Some tips for this round.[/size][/color][/size]

[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]-After you're done, take a word count, and then cut 10% of the length [i]without cutting content[/i].[/size][/color][/size]
[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]-You might write from a third person [i]limited[/i] perspective. This is like an "over the shoulder" view from one strict party. This is a good writing exercise because you're barred from writing the protagonist's judgment.[/size][/color][/size]

[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]I'll pitch a new seed if you don't have one handy...[/size][/color][/size]

[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]A unit of hard-ass space marines is given some busywork at peacetime; an endangered species of "red-billed sea chickens" have built nests on the beach, but something or someone keeps trashing nests in the night. They're assigned to protect the sea chickens. Go.[/size][/color][/size]

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This is only 200 words...and could be shorter with the removal of John's job description. With a longer story it'd set up a great series, but as it stands it is just useless info I guess. I feel if I made it longer I couldn't get back to the end within the amount of words I'd like to keep to in the day. However I think it ends at a good point making the reader step into the position of the important sides of the story...Anyways here it is...




The year was 2047, John woke up to thesound of his phone ringing. He was a young up and coming agent of thegovernment. His job was to resolve problems caused by what Delegator,a computer linked with all humans tasked with controlling all legaland governmental decisions, considered rogue agents on the VirtualNet, a network like the internet that uses a virtual realityinterface, often call the V-Net. John, like everyone, had beenchipped many years ago. His future was planned for him and he hasbeen conditioned to follow his orders without question. John answeredhis phone groggily.

"Yes?"

"Activation Code: D-2VNA42"

"Delegator, haven't we discussedcalling me this early?"

"Yes. Prepare to receive urgentorders."

"Go ahead."

"End Delegator Program."

The phone went dead before John couldquestion what Delegator had ordered him. That is, if he were going tothink that in first place. He wasn't going to. His only thought wasto do what Delegator had ordered him to do so he could get on withhis day. John left his apartment and made his way to the Delegatorcomplex. He was met with an armed contingent of guards.

"Step out of the Car"

"I'm here to complete a order Ireceived from Delegator"

"So are we."

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...Is that a whole story?

Whole story! Introduce a problem while characterizing the setting, then solve the problem. Continue.

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[quote name='JoeCooper' timestamp='1310542676' post='4834657']
...Is that a whole story?

Whole story! Introduce a problem while characterizing the setting, then solve the problem. Continue.
[/quote]


Problem is introduced.
Delegator has order it's own destruction and preservation
This ending asks the reader what would you do? and is what you do out of courage,or blind obedience?
The problem isn't for the author to solve, but pose to the audience.

As I said I would continue past this point but I feel a far more concise story is better than an unfinished one as any further and it would require me to write a screen play or series...



But writing these two stories and thinking about it I seem to have a problem where I want to create a deep story and setting it up, but then when I realize that the story is going to take more time than i want to invest I cut the story or a make it really short. In other words I seem to have a psychological block from writing things that take me more than a single session of writing to accomplish...

So I have two problems... of which one needs to be fixed...
I need to either get over stopping at one session and making things shorter than I set them up to be
OR
I need to stop setting things up to be deeper than I'm willing to write about in a single session.

I think the first is better to get over than the second considering I don't plan to be writing any short stories...
Given that I'm not really doing anything and I am creative I could write several novels by NaNoWriMo standards per month easily given the writing speed.
So the question becomes how do I force myself to actually do that?

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[font=arial, verdana, tahoma, sans-serif][size=2]Alright now we can look at this in detail from a different perspective. There's a few...
"[color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size=2]as it stands it is just useless info I guess"[/size][/size][/color]
[size="3"][size=2] [/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size=2]When you have a whole, you can judge what information is necessary in light of the whole. You can, for example, delete the virtual net details; this isn't used. In fact he never goes into it; he gets his message on a phone. In principle, it's not necessary to know that it's 2047. If you just start introducing things we don't have, like an omniscient AI, into a real-worldish setting, folks know it's "20 minutes into the future" and what that entails.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2] [/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size=2]We can also discuss the structure now.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2] [/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size=2]The problem is yes; the delegator ordered the protagonist to destroy it, and ordered someone else to defend it. This is a perfect conflict of interest.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2] [/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size=2]However we have concision taken too far. The audience doesn't necessarily want to solve it because it's the [i]protagonist's[/i] problem to solve, not yours or theirs. But as the writer, you have to show the protagonist solving it. If the solver is the [i]audience[/i], than the written protagonist character is now superfluous. And anyway, as we say, "Make things as simple as possible, [b]but not simpler[/b]."[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2] [/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size=2]If you were to go on and write the resolution to this problem - which you can do [i]however[/i] (they could even have a gentlemenly discussion and agree to call a repair guy) - than it changes whether or not the details about the year and virtual net are relevant.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2] [/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size=2]Looking at this piece as a whole, we can now say when we go back and look at it that we can delete this and that. But it's not enough of a whole. They need to resolve the problem, and when they do, you may stop.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2] [/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size=2]I'm going to think about your next post and post again shortly.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2] [/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size=2]But first, another seed[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size=2] for you to think about if you need one.[/size][/size][/color]
[size="3"][size=2] [/size][/size]
[size="3"][size=2][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size=2]A mad scientist invents "meta-coffee" by brewing regular coffee, then [i]adding instant coffee to the hot coffee[/i]. This creates a superposition of states; it's both brewed and instant simultaneously, and has the property that when given to a taste tester while also applying a 1.21 gigawatt charge to that taste tester, it opens a portal to another dimension where everything is antimatter.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size][/size][/font]

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[quote name='Durakken' timestamp='1310543960' post='4834667']But writing these two stories and thinking about it I seem to have a problem where I want to create a deep story and setting it up, but then when I realize that the story is going to take more time than i want to invest I cut the story or a make it really short. In other words I seem to have a psychological block from writing things that take me more than a single session of writing to accomplish ... I need to either get over stopping at one session and making things shorter than I set them up to be ... I need to stop setting things up to be deeper than I'm willing to write about in a single session ... I think the first is better to get over than the second considering I don't plan to be writing any short stories ...[/quote]


A good short story doesn't necessarily take an hour to write, it can take a month. There's a lot of rewriting, iteration and careful consideration. But you can't let that stall your efforts to complete a first draft too much because a lot of this work, again, must be done in light of a whole. So...

The problem with your discipline may really be that you're trying to force yourself to write bits of a story that are boring, hollow or "mandatory". But parsimony is about not having fluff in the end product.

I posit that you're not making it interesting for yourself on a continual basis.

Think about fractals; it's not just a problem-solution cycle on the grand scale, it can be on the medium scale and all the way down to dialog loops. All statements and character statements should be actions and there should be something close up and far away.

Look at the meta-coffee pitch in my previous post, for example. You can easily draw some problems from it; to get into the portal, you need to kill a taste tester.

That means, for starters, there may be a dead body and crime involved. If it becomes [i]necessary[/i] to [i]continue[/i] opening portals, you have close up problems of acquiring more taste testers to kill. Who's doing it? Is it a guy in his basement who has to go out to hunt? Maybe... Now we have a tighter problem; a sort of a sub story where he's trying to murder someone.

That breaks down further. Problem; blood is everywhere. Problem; someone heard a noise. Problem; the powerbill game in and 1.21 gigawatts really works the numbers. Problem; must get better job to pay power bills.

If it's the authorities doing it, and having to find taste testers to kill or even conjure up new taste testers by training prisoners, you have different issues.

So there can always been some tight loop you're writing as you go, so it should always be interesting. Every night you sit down to write a few thousand words, have something interesting to be writing. [i]If you don't like it, write something else[/i].

About that last point, don't plot very strictly and don't be afraid to throw out your plans and go in a different direction for the sake of being continually interesting.

Also, don't worry about building depth into it. Just have a big arc and little arcs and sit down and add some continually until the big arc is exhausted. Then stop and behold; a first draft.

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[quote name='JoeCooper' timestamp='1310547165' post='4834700']
[font="arial, verdana, tahoma, sans-serif"][size="2"]Alright now we can look at this in detail from a different perspective. There's a few...
"[color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size="2"]as it stands it is just useless info I guess"[/size][/size][/color]
[size="3"] [/size]
[size="3"][size="2"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size="2"]When you have a whole, you can judge what information is necessary in light of the whole. You can, for example, delete the virtual net details; this isn't used. In fact he never goes into it; he gets his message on a phone. In principle, it's not necessary to know that it's 2047. If you just start introducing things we don't have, like an omniscient AI, into a real-worldish setting, folks know it's "20 minutes into the future" and what that entails.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size]
[size="3"] [/size]
[size="3"][size="2"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size="2"]We can also discuss the structure now.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size]
[size="3"] [/size]
[size="3"][size="2"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size="2"]The problem is yes; the delegator ordered the protagonist to destroy it, and ordered someone else to defend it. This is a perfect conflict of interest.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size]
[size="3"] [/size]
[size="3"][size="2"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size="2"]However we have concision taken too far. The audience doesn't necessarily want to solve it because it's the [i]protagonist's[/i] problem to solve, not yours or theirs. But as the writer, you have to show the protagonist solving it. If the solver is the [i]audience[/i], than the written protagonist character is now superfluous. And anyway, as we say, "Make things as simple as possible, [b]but not simpler[/b]."[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size]
[size="3"] [/size]
[size="3"][size="2"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size="2"]If you were to go on and write the resolution to this problem - which you can do [i]however[/i] (they could even have a gentlemenly discussion and agree to call a repair guy) - than it changes whether or not the details about the year and virtual net are relevant.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size]
[size="3"] [/size]
[size="3"][size="2"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size="2"]Looking at this piece as a whole, we can now say when we go back and look at it that we can delete this and that. But it's not enough of a whole. They need to resolve the problem, and when they do, you may stop.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size][/size][/font]
[/quote]

Here's a few of the ideas for what I'd do if I were to continue...

#1. John makes a break for it and thinks he must do what Delegator ordered him to do. The other agents try to stop him. This results in an action flick where the V-net is used as one means of trying to hack in. Ultimately he succeeds in getting through and it ends with John reaching to pull the plug.

#2. The agents look puzzled and the head agent takes John with him to see the Delegator who explains the situation and explains that he sees that humanity will likely stagnate if he continues to lead them while on the other hand he has been programmed to be self preservative... thus the call to John was what he thinks and the computer is showing signs of real sentience in that there is a bit of insanity in what he has proposed. The two agents then go on a lengthy discussion of humans evolving, the chance for stagnation, whether to follow the orders or not, and whether the Delegator has suffered from the human flaw that is sentience to some degree... Now the real kick with this ending is that if I wanted to write the conclusion with a huge surprise and not leave it up to the reader I'd have the head agent shoot john then kill the delegator. a scene where both decide to follow orders and the head agent wins with the kill but has a revelatory moment.

#3. The story doesn't end but rather John sees the problem that the Delegator is and joins the "rogue agents" he was fighting against in order to free the world from the tyranny that is the Delegator all while having cool CGI action scenes in a virtual space.

i think the second has the most impact but I'm probably one of the worst people ever attempt to actually write that piece lol.

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It doesn't matter who's writing it. Just don't try to force grandiosity, it doesn't work. Things are either grand or not.

Throw out v-net because [i]you got it from other movies[/i]. In real life we have this thing called the internet and people spend way too much time on it.

It looks like you've already asked yourselves what tools the delegator has to act, and they include the guards. Both the guards and the other guy are humans who can do whatever they please.

In the original idea I had, which I'm using elsewhere, the delegator doesn't give orders, it gives requests. It pitches a task to someone else if someone refuses. It's smart enough, however, to find someone likely to do the job because it kinda sorta knows everybody.

So it becomes important to ask; [i]what sort of person will follow the orders?[/i] Think about militias, gangs, reactionaries who don't want the good old days to end and have happy memories of being given tasks when they were children and are afraid of change and have machine guns. Everyone should want to act for one reason or another.

Of course like all intelligence, it's also fallible. If the characters who show up discuss and change their minds, the delegator might [i]call someone else[/i].

I was slightly kidding about the "gentlemenly discussion", but you might ask what other kind of tools the delegator has at its disposal. Does it have any robots? Who believes who?

Two tips.

1) Constantly make problems.

2) Use Google Docs. (You can share with the public and put a link up.)

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[quote name='JoeCooper' timestamp='1310551726' post='4834749']
It doesn't matter who's writing it. Just don't try to force grandiosity, it doesn't work. Things are either grand or not.

Throw out v-net because [i]you got it from other movies[/i]. In real life we have this thing called the internet and people spend way too much time on it.
[/quote]

v-net is an extension of what the internet is. More along the lines of Internet 20.0. I didn't come up with it due to some movie or put it in there for that reason. It's because that is a plausible job in the future where there is a world of fully realized digitial avatars that act as super villains via hack the network. V-net would be slang for Virtual Reality Internet as a way to separate it from the largely text based/2D version we have now which would be incorporated within it.

It's grandiose because it is. To me it's just a stray thought that is created from a lot of information about where things are going and why and then injecting whatever concept I'm working with into those subconscious equations which then creates a reality that works... Maybe it's bad story telling, but it's far from just something thrown in trivially.

Maybe I do that because I got used to chat role play where you develop a character as you go and even though the information may be unimportant on the surface or to a story it becomes part of the character's way they think and act and perhaps it might be used later... of course if it's not it is not as if people are going to point out that you brought up information in role playing that you never used ^.^

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[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]"[/size][/color][/size][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]It's grandiose because it is ..."[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]That's fine, you're right, I was just feeling grumpy for unrelated reasons. Forget it.[/size][/color]
[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][color="#000000"][size="3"]
[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size="2"][size="3"][color="#000000"][size="2"][size="3"]"[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size][/size][/color][/size][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]I didn't come up with it due to some movie ..."[/size][/color]

[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size="2"]I've decided not to argue this point since it doesn't matter.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size][/color][/size][/color][/size]
[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][color="#000000"][size="3"]
[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size="2"]"[/size][/size][/color][/size][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]you develop a character as you go and even though the information may be unimportant on the surface or to a story it becomes part of the character's way they think and act and perhaps it might be used later"[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"][i]This is good[/i].[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]And the dialog is very pithy and focused. In fact, having him confront armed guards who claim they're also following contradictory orders in that manner is a very good tactic to express that the machine has given contradictory orders. This minds the principle that reading is an active process. You get an A+ for that story, I hope I wasn't too grumpy earlier.[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]But let's press ahead now. You declared that this was a whole. [/size][/color][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Being concise is about cutting off what's not important and leaving what is.[/size][color="#000000"] [/color][/color][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]It's a good approach to write up a storm, [i]then[/i], when you have a whole, go over and cut. When you have a whole, you can judge what's important and what's not. I can see that v-net doesn't matter to the whole. It [i]may[/i] go.[/size][/color]

[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]But there is an unrelated reason that it [i]should[/i] go.[/size][/color][/size]
[/size][/color][/size][/color][/size]
[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]"[/size][/color][/size][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]of course if it's not it is not as if people are going to point out that you brought up information in role playing that you never used ..."[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]It's too big a point to glaze over; it characterizes the story as one [i]about[/i] that. One of two things will happen. [/size][/color][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]If reading casually, I personally would have stopped [i]immediately[/i] on seeing "v-net" (never mind why). [/size][/color][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Conversely, someone who [i]does[/i] want to read about that is going to feel cheated and may cry "bait and switch!" [/size][/color][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]There [i]are[/i] effective exceptions to this rule, but for now, just humor me and stay on point.[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Read post #14 if you missed it and let's move on. New story or a second draft. Let me know if you want more seeds.[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Side note: I rewrote this post several times before clicking "Post".[/size][/color]
[color="#1C2837"] [/color]
[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Side side note: You might watch Total Recall and take note of how he's established as a construction worker early on and exactly how this plays a role in the movie.[/size][/color]

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[quote name='JoeCooper' timestamp='1310561532' post='4834805']
[size="2"][color="#1c2837"][/color][/size] [size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][color="#000000"][size="3"][size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size="2"][size="3"][color="#000000"][size="2"][size="3"]"[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size][/size][/color][/size][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]I didn't come up with it due to some movie ..."[/size][/color]

[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size="2"]I've decided not to argue this point since it doesn't matter.[/size][/size][/color][/size][/size][/color][/size][/color][/size]
[size=2][/quote]

[/size]
[color="#000000"]I was debating whether to say anything about the obvious point that everyone has been subjected to matrix and that's not even the beginning of those types of things. My point is not that I'm the originator, but rather it's not one of those things that "I heard it over here so I'm going to use it here even though it makes no sense to use it here in any way or I just want to cash in on that" but yes not important.[/color]
[color="#000000"]
[/color]
[color="#000000"]
[/color]
[color="#000000"][quote][/color]
[color="#000000"][color="#1C2837"][color=#1C2837][size=2][size="2"]You declared that this was a whole. [/size][/size][/color][/color][color="#1C2837"][color=#1C2837][size=2][size="2"]Being concise is about cutting off what's not important and leaving what is.[/size] [/size][/color][/color][color="#1C2837"][color=#1C2837][size=2][size="2"]It's a good approach to write up a storm, [i]then[/i], when you have a whole, go over and cut. When you have a whole, you can judge what's important and what's not. I can see that v-net doesn't matter to the whole. It [i]may[/i] go.[/size][/size][/color][/color]

[size="3"][color=#1C2837][size=2][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]But there is an unrelated reason that it [i]should[/i] go.[/size][/color][/size][/color][/size][/color]
[color="#000000"][size="3"][color=#1C2837][size=2][color="#1C2837"] [/color][/size][/color][/size][/color]
[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]"[/size][/color][/size][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]of course if it's not it is not as if people are going to point out that you brought up information in role playing that you never used ..."[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]It's too big a point to glaze over; it characterizes the story as one [i]about[/i] that. One of two things will happen. [/size][/color][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]If reading casually, I personally would have stopped [i]immediately[/i] on seeing "v-net" (never mind why). [/size][/color][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Conversely, someone who [i]does[/i] want to read about that is going to feel cheated and may cry "bait and switch!" [/size][/color][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]There [i]are[/i][/size][/color][color="#1C2837"][size="2"] effective exceptions to this rule, but for now, just humor me and stay on point.[/size][/color]
[size="2"][color="#1c2837"][/quote]
[/color][/size]
[size="2"][color="#1c2837"]
[/color][/size]
[size="2"][color="#1c2837"]I'd have pulled it out as at later point if I was editing it as a complete piece (as in polished and cleaned up). I left it in mainly as a "if i wanted to return to this at a later date" and also if I were to turn it into a movie or series I'd expand on that point so I think for this it was better to leave it in. Speaking of which. I'm not polishing anything as one might describe it. This is all more or less flow of consciousness.[/color][/size]
[size="2"][color="#1c2837"]
[/color][/size]
[size="2"][color="#1c2837"][quote][/color][/size]
[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Read post #14 if you missed it and let's move on. New story or a second draft. Let me know if you want more seeds.[/size][/color]
[/quote]

I'll be writing... or trying to write at least one piece a day. Not just fiction but all sorts, like tomorrow or technically today where I am but i don't count it till i go to sleep and wake up, I'll be writing on continuity and why it's important. It's the one topic that i got from the other place I asked for topics and ideas so I'll take it.

[quote]
[color="#1C2837"][size="2"][size=2]Side side note: You might watch Total Recall and take note of how he's established as a construction worker early on and exactly how this plays a role in the movie.[/size][/size][/color]
[/quote]

That was on earlier today... watched a little of it but seen it a number of times so don't really need to see it again. Anyways, yeah i get what you mean, but you know I could argue that telling the job info was a way of quickly relating the a number of attributes associated with such a position, his role within the system, and later you would have the twist of even though he's following orders from his "enemy" he's now on the opposite side of the law to a degree. It also relates the thinking of the computer. It could have called a repairman or any number of other people that could get access easier and quicker, but by choosing to call someone who's job it is to take down rogue elements the computer is shown to think of himself as rogue. Those thought did cross my mind, but the main reason is that i was planning on making it longer and using it in other ways... Even that you could derive all this information from that small chunk I'm still not sure it's good to have in there ^.^

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"[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]you know I could argue that telling the job info was a way of quickly relating the a number of attributes associated with such a position, his role within the system"[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]It absolutely is and I use things like that all the time, but-[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]"[/size][/color][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]but by choosing to call someone who's job it is to take down rogue elements the computer is shown to think of himself as rogue"[/size][/color]

[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Be careful if it can be seen as painting a character as super cool and awesome because it may feel the impression is forced and unnatural - and such off-point positive\cool characterizations be seen as a red flag to some because it can herald a Mary Sue.[/size][/color][/size]

[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Mischaracterization is another pitfall if you try to characterize someone in backstory or "exposition". C[/size][/color][/size][size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]ase in point, it's suggested through actual story action that the "rogue" takes blind orders from a machine without a second thought, including a somewhat radical and jarring one.[/size][/color][/size]

And there is the characterization-of-the-story mentioned above. If you used a very familiar, banal term like "construction worker" it would characterize well without being noticed or establishing the movie as a construction work movie but, like Total Recall, you can still go nuts with it.

[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]"[/size][/color][/size][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]if I was editing it as a complete piece"[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]I understand perfectly, but just to be clear, I'm asking for whole pieces so we can talk about that part cause it's supremely important. I'm personally not showing people first-drafts at all except for my reader (in this case that's me).[/size][/color]

[size="3"][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]"[/size][/color][/size][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]I'll be writing on continuity and why it's important"[/size][/color]

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Good, post that too. (But try to learn how g-docs works, it's wonderful for this.)[/size][/color]

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I was thinking about this, and I just wanna reiterate that the "So were we" line exemplifies what I mean about reading as an active process.

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A long time ago in a galaxy not so far away, there lived a boy. This boy wanted to go on adventures and explore the world. To say the least he was discontented with his life as a farmer. He lived with his aunt and uncle and they worried for him. They tried to raise him well, but saw how he felt, but they had made a promise when the boy was younger to look after him and try to keep him out of trouble, but the world was a dangerous place and for an adventurous boy it would be easy to find trouble at every turn. For many a year the boy hoped to be free of the farm and one day his wish came true, an adventure came to him. Two messengers had arrived with a message, not for him, but for a sage the messengers were looking for. The boy believed he knew where to find this sage and took the two with him to find the sage across the dessert.
When they reached the sage's home the messengers told the sage that a princess was in trouble and that he, the sage was her only hope. The boy grew excited and wished to come along on this adventure. The sage had known the boy's father and felt that it was his destiny to come with him on his quest to save the princess, but first they had better talk with the boy's aunt and uncle. That, however, could way till morning as to travel the dessert at night was dangerous and it was a long way back to the farm, so the boy and sage talked all night, the sage regailing the boy with tales of the boys father and how they had been great friends when he was younger, but an evil lord had slain the poor boy's father. The boy grew angry that his past had not been revealed to him, but the sage calmed him with a present, a sword. The sword his father carried into battle many a time along side the sage. The boy swore revenge.
The next day the boy and the sage returned to his family's farm to find that it had been ransacked by soldiers looking for the messengers. While the boy grew sad, the sage hastened him to gather his things and to be off before the soldiers returned and found them, ending their mission to save the princess. The boy quickly took what he could and prepared for the long journey, the journey he'd always hoped for, wondering had the cost of his dream been too much. Quickly, he pushed away those thoughts and hurriedly left with the sage and the messengers to the dock city to find transportation to where the princess as being held captive. They needed a rogue, a smuggler, someone that could get them where they needed to be quickly and quietly with out asking quetions and most importantly someone who would be trust worthy enough to accomplish their goals.
This type of man, you'd think would be hard to find, but it just so happened that just such a man was there on business. At first glance the rogue was a sketchy fellow, having just shot someone trying to collect on his debt. They approached him and proposed he take them where they wanted to go, to another land, a port in the middle of no where and they'd pay him handsomly for his services and he'd be allowed to whatever booty he could find where they are going. After some thinking the rogue agrees. If this was as big as they were making it out to be he'd be set for life and able to pay off all his debts. And so, soon the group sets out on their journey to the imperial capital, where the princess is being held.
When they arrive, the sage, rogue, and boy sneak into the city to find the princess being held in a common prison cell. Freeing, her alerts the city to their presence and suddenly there is no time for the love at first site the rogue and the princess feel imediately. They must run, and battle, for if they are captured they'd certainly be killed to be made an example of. They had almost made it back to their ship, but the dark lord had wisely been waiting for them there, between them and their escape. The sage unsheathed his sword and challenged the evil lord to a duel, allowing the others to escape to the ship, but the sage had not though the lord had grown stronger since their las meeting and soon the sage was slain by the same man who had killed his friend so many years ago. He had accomplished his goal though, the others had escaped and the princess was saved.
The boy had had his adventure, he accomplished everything he dreamed, but what had he truly done and what had it cost him? His family was gone, the sage was dead, the princess loved the rogue, and he'd lost his home. He had nowhere to go, no path to follow and worse, he was an outlaw in the land the dark lord held sway over which was vast. A life of adventure might not be what he'd wanted after all.



Placing bets on how quickly someone realizes what this story is.

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This was [i]much[/i] easier to read. But once I realize that it actually was Star Wars I lost energy to continue. Some notes...

[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]-Once one feels like the know the rest of it, it's not interesting anymore.[/size][/color]
[color="#1C2837"] [/color]
-When I saw it open about a galaxy, my first thought was that it'd be a lore-dump. (Note that the Green Lantern movie preview does this and is a great example of how to write a flop). [i]But there was no lore dump[/i]. It goes to an individual. This is how winners are written.

-That boy has a desire for something he doesn't have (adventures and stuff).

-"was [color="#1C2837"][size="2"]discontented" and "many a year" don't work. [/size][/color][color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Some prose tips; read what you wrote out loud to see how it sounds. If it's jarring, change it.[/size][/color]
[color="#1C2837"] [/color]
[color="#1C2837"][size="2"]Try this. Take the first two sentences you wrote, then just start from there. If you have an idea, ask if Star Wars did it and, if 'yes', don't do that. Make up problems for him. [i]Ask yourself, from time to time, what the audience will expect will happen next, then don't do that.[/i][/size][/color]
[color="#1C2837"][size="2"][i]
[/i][/size][/color]
[color="#1C2837"][size="2"][i][url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uIA7UiUOulc"]Watch this.[/url]
[/i][/size][/color]

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