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About JacksonBlair

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  1. Your current or recent writing projects?

    What I meant was: He gives them the powers when he creates them, but his sons are pissed at him for doing it. So he sets the humans a trial, to show their worth. Those who failed, lost the power.
  2. Your current or recent writing projects?

    Nothing really complete. This is only a small part, and I'm constantly re-writing and adding bits Also still defining the culture of the first society, based on my own. Taking a lot of dramatic elements out and replacing them with more likely events. Also writing back story that explains the key characters personalities. The history of the story is a little better now, not being so steeped in B.S. (ex. ancient technology of the past). I thought the new actions of the gods felt similarly archaic to a lot of those in mythology. A brief look - - Forn creates the new human race, and gives them the powers of his sons. Logi, Kari and Ogir are beset with anger at their fathers actions and threaten to destroy this race as they did the last. So Forn sets a trial for the new race, and deems only those that pass it will have the powers of his sons. From the past he awakes an ancient evil, or, 'the modern man'. The man, called Gabriel, was imprisoned deep underground for crimes against his own. When the man is released and makes it to the surface, he's surprised to see a new world, and a primitive race before him. Even greater was his surprise at their apparent power to bend fire, wind and water to their will. Later in the history of the world, people would say that Forn walked among their kind and taught them language, the directions, the stars, etc. This was a lie, built over the war which Gabriel brang about. Gabriel himself was immortal, supremely advanced by his bodily technology. Over many years, the primitive kin of Forn grew smarter and smarter, advancing astronomically quickly under his tutelage. Eventually, he deemed to introduce them to the 'machine god'. The entity that built towers of light, and eradicated suffering. Within the primitive constraints of the new world, Gabriel created as best as possible the most basic of revolutionary inventions. In leaps and bounds they advanced, but their powers became more and more obsolete, and some became concerned. As the new race was born with this power, it was easy to take it for granted. Being shepherded by an established and smart human, they'd never worshiped or understood how they could effortlessly produce this 'magic' that Gabriel's inventions had taken years to produce. Some shied away from the quickly evolving tech, and turned back to the reassuring basics. They were ignored for the most part, but not unnoticed. And that's about as far as I can write in certainty : P As usual, they eventually war, those faithful to Forn win, and the rest and cursed to be without the power forever.
  3. Your current or recent writing projects?

    I'm still writing the Last Verse. Spent most of the time writing and re-writing the opening sequences, and trying to explain things that can't be explained. Getting better though : D
  4. The Last Verse

    Will do.
  5. The Last Verse

    I'm starting to realize why I'm having trouble with the writing. Most games I've played tend to focus on a small part of a characters life. It doesn't painstakingly make you play through their childhood, and all the years they weren't fighting monsters or saving the world, etc. What I'm really trying to focus on is the brothers adult life, with the gang years, and the teenage years afterward (which i haven't yet explained) as a shorter prelude. I'm thinking of a scenario where Vegard, the older brother, talks about their life to an as of yet unknown character. In between his re-telling of their lives, are the scenes. [i]Here's what i just came up with.[/i] Vegard is in prison in the city. He's narrating whats happened in his life to the soldier he fought when he was a teenager. I see it like this - Vegards in a dark cell. The stones that form the wall are black, and the only light in the room comes a candle, flickering on a small wooden bench outside the bars. His feet are shackles on chains to the floor, and his arms back and apart, painfully spreading him across the wall. A cell door creaks open and shuts, and the sounds of many boots echo through the room. Vegard looks up slightly, and watches as a soldier opens his cell door, and a group of them trudge into his cell and start taking off his shackles. He drops to his knees, his arms feeling painfully stretched, and the soldiers leave the cell, and close the door. He hears a voice, and looks up to see one soldier outside the bars, sitting on the wooden chair accompanying the table. Then some dialogue happens. Questions I'm asking myself are. - Why Vegard is in prison - Where Osmond is - Who the soldier is [i]Here's what I've written beforehand.[/i] It's relative, swears. What i haven't written here is what they do after leaving the city. In short, they get caught after stowing away on the train. They're employed to pay off their tickets, and to keep out of trouble, then given the choice to continue working with the train company or going about their business. They choose the former. One day, the train is attacked as it trains along. A group of bandits rides up beside it, and try to board it. Osmond and Vegard run to the last carriage, which is conveniently just a flat cargo platform with nothing on it. Osmond lets go with a fierce display of Logi power, while Osmond disarms one, steals his sword and begins to fight off the rest. Anyway! After this Osmond wants to return to the city, to learn more about his powers. [i]Here's where the two join.[/i] This is where Vegard is imprisoned. They return to see the city in the last days of civil war, the one that started just before they escaped the city on the train. This is bit blurry but, they encounter the now young adult, Andes. As they start to reconcile, they're attacked by a group of soldiers. Vegard and Andes start to fight, while Osmond's protests that they can't join a civil war against the city, especially one that looks like it's about to end. Vegard ignores him, and he and Andes keep fighting, until they wound and almost kill a soldier. Suddenly, they're surrounded by a larger group, and taken prisoner. This has honestly filled in some decent gaps for me. Helps give me a reason for Vegard to finally leave the city, and go about his own story. I'm thinking Osmond has joined the military, for specific reasons yet to be dreamed up. Criticism welcome and appreciated.
  6. The Last Verse

    [i]Moving on with the story.[/i] As Andes and Hart are about to break into a heated argument, an unknown voice calls out from a nearby alleyway. The leader of an opposing gang, with a large group of teenagers behind him, tells Hart he wants him to give over Andes, because Andes killed one of their members to save Osmond. Despite being outnumbered, Hart declines and a brawl breaks out. Vegard crawls over to Osmond, who's sitting where Hart dropped him, terrified. Vegard helps him up, and says 'Come on, let's go!' and they start to flee the scene. Before they get out of sight, Osmond looks back and sees Andes being overwhelmed. He quite loyal to Andes for the kindness he's showed them, and he starts to run back. Andes glimpses him running back, yells 'Don't!' before he's punched out. An opposing gang member sees Osmond running to help Andes, and moves to intercept the kid. Osmond screams 'Leave him alone!' and as the gang member gets closer, Osmond lights him on fire. While the member stops, drops and rolls, Osmond gets closer to Andes, and with Vegards help they beat off his assailants. After a painfully long fight, in which Osmond lights anyone on fire that touches Andes or Osmond, they come out the victors. After the fight, as they're recovering, Hart finds out one of his friends was stabbed to death. After kneeling at his side, he picks up the ragged bottle of spirits and walks back to Osmond. Osmond reaches out his hand, feeling sorry for Hart, and lights it. Hart turns and hurls the bottle at the house of the adults he came out to get revenge on, and picks his dead friend up. He starts trudging stoically back to the house, and they all follow. The next morning, they have a burial in the snow behind the gang house. I think this will be the key point where i skip forward a few weeks, or months. I just want to show their induction into the gang lifestyle, what the people are like, who they're fighting, and the beginning of Osmond & Vegards development. - - - I want them to go on with the gang for a few years, eventually stamping out the other gangs, and going big time. They start going 'uptown', and robbing houses, mansions, and Hart starts dealing with grown men in terms of trading weapons and favors. [i] While they're in the uptown, casing places to break into, they befriend a wealthy kid. They get to see what living prosperously is like, and for the first time in a long time, they start acting like kids again. They play games on the street, soccer (or something similar), snowballs fights. Then this all gets ruined when their friend gets bullied by a group of older wealthy kids. The brothers obviously beat them up, being much more hardened, and their friends parents find out. The kids parents forbid him from seeing the brothers, and they lose their friend. [/i] In terms of the end of their gang life, i have a vague idea. In the last big gang fight, where Harts gang finally takes over the slums, Osmond finds the girl he liked from the Orphanage in the house they're raiding. When they find her, Vegard, Osmond, and another boy are present. The boy is a bit battle-crazed, and tries to attack the girl straight away, deeming her part of the other gang. Osmond stops him, and when the boy threatens to tell Hart, Vegard pins him to a wall and tells him to keep his mouth shut. The kid is left embarrassed and angry, with Osmond's secret in his hands. How exactly Osmond manages to convince Hart to let this girl join unscathed is a bit beyond me. I'm not sure if Hart has more respect for them at this point, or if he's afraid of them, or if he's so elated at his victory that he lets it go, and then begins to regret it. This all paves the way for the big ending. Osmond, Vegard and the girl, Saga, are walking around, doing whatever. They see a large group of Soldiers gearing up just outside the slums, and as they start to charge in, the trio start running. They've gathered the soldiers are making some sort of assault, and they make haste back to the gang house in order to warn Hart and the others. On their way back, they're intercepted by the same soldier that witnessed their first thievery. Vegard engages him so Osmond and Saga can keep running, and he begins to fight the soldier. Osmond and the girl make it back to the house, and as Osmond bursts in the front door, he's knocked out from behind with a bottle to the head, and Saga is dragged inside. It seems the boy finally cracked and told Hart that he was threatened and told not to talk, about Saga being part of the opposing gang. Osmond is dragged to the center of the room, bleeding profusely from his head, and Saga is dragged into a by Hart, who has the intention of raping her. Meanwhile in a back alley somewhere.. Vegard is fighting the soldier valiantly, though he's vastly outmatched. It's at this point Vegard realizes his own power, and as he swings his sword to and fro, his hands ignite briefly. Eventually he's beaten, disarmed, and thrown down. The guard looks down on him briefly, then rushes off to rejoin the group of soldiers. A confused Vegard rushes back to the gang house, and finds no soldiers have arrived yet. He bursts in the front door, and the first thing he sees is Osmond lying on the floor, quite bloody, with a small group of armed boys standing around him. In a violent rage, Vegard charges forward and maims them one by one. At last, he kneels down beside Osmond, who's still alive, but barely conscious. He whispers 'Help her', and Vegard hears Saga's muffled screams from somewhere in the house. He runs down the hall, bursts into a room, and before Hart registers it, Vegard slashes him across the back, then drops his sword, and beats him to death against the bedroom wall. He takes Saga and Osmond, and they leave the house and make their way out of the slums. He washes his and Vegards faces with snow, to remove the blood. The details are hazy, but they sneak into a baggage carriage on a train, and leave the city for the first time." Comments and criticism welcome and appreciated. Note: I would post a full draft, but I'm really not entirely sure what happens throughout most of the story. I'm still factoring in the main characters from the other 2 nations, filling in the space between everything, how the Army of Heretics (God followers) comes about, who dies , and why the epic battle at the end culminates in the ruin of the ancient city, among other things. Also! Just bought a Bamboo graphics tablet, here's a rough appearance for the young Osmond. Forgive the terrible drawing. And the fringe. Perhaps he won't have that. [img]http://img827.imageshack.us/img827/6394/unled3sc.png[/img]
  7. Google Docs

    Lol hahaha. So that's what it's like when two people bounce ideas : P
  8. The Last Verse

    I'll keep an eye out
  9. The Last Verse

    Oh that's cool
  10. I find a great way to get inspiration is to listen to inspiring music. Such as: Blurry - Puddle of Mudd [url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xJJsoquu70o"]Blurry - Puddle of Mudd - Youtube[/url] It's fairly vague in it's lyrics, and for me it just helps me envision a tragic scenario. Such as - Soldier going to war, leaving his child and wife behind, doomed to fail I tend to think of the key moments in a story, like an AMV in my head. Other than that, general media helps me along. Reading, watching movies, playing other games, or just things that happen in your own life.
  11. The Last Verse

    [quote name='JoeCooper' timestamp='1309436255' post='4829518'] You can probably press ahead without validation from us... It occurs to me that a lot of work has to be done in light of other work, so for me to give anything more useful now I'd need to see the Big Picture, maybe even a full first draft. For example, I can't tell if someone is being characterized well early on if I can't see them in action longer term. I can't tell if the opening adequately characterizes the work and establishes the kind of trust you need in the reader. etc. On a side note... One thing I do with my Trusted Reader is Google Docs. We write on Google Docs and we can see each other's works in progress. It'll puke on very large works (>50k words) if your internet blows (mine does in Poland) but if you have a reader (do you?), it's a win. [/quote] I'm looking at this google reader/docs dealy, but i'm not really sure how it works. My email is Jackson.Blair@live.com, I'm assuming i enter an email, and click follow, and I'll be able to see all the public works/updates etc. [quote]Yeah, as Joe said, I thought everything was being already characterised and, well, fleshed out [img]http://public.gamedev.net/public/style_emoticons/default/smile.gif[/img] Without the true big picture and knowing the characters more, I can only judge what I read. Or rather not judge, but just plainly read and think over. F.e. It occured to me later that Hart put Orson to a test -- you are WITH or AGAINST us, and this was a choice the boy had to make on his own, changing him from innocent to "part of the pack". If you give the reader too much to think about, they might short circuit, like I did [img]http://public.gamedev.net/public/style_emoticons/default/tongue.gif[/img] And by "too much to think about", I mean ambiguity in the text and actions of characters not yet "whole". In light of what you wrote and what I pondered upon, it is a question of explaining the characters well enough for them to be "in character" all the time. Things that are not set in stone we take for granted and tell ourselves according to the template embed in our minds (like I did with the guard). Overall I can see you are really improving and starting to add some spice to the whole thing [img]http://public.gamedev.net/public/style_emoticons/default/smile.gif[/img] Very nice, keep it up! [/quote] I can't thank you guys enough for the criticism, it helps so much. Edit: Feel free to add me on Google, would love to return the favor and read your own stories.
  12. The Last Verse

    [quote name='Zethariel' timestamp='1309431848' post='4829490'] Quite a nice guard you got there. I'm sure he is payed enough to "protect" the stalls as he does xD I am not sure such a person would act the way you described -- after all, they are being payed for protecting the stalls, no? If they fail, it's their financial loss. As a guard in such a place, with so many gangs about (as I have the impression there are many), the keepers should be more ruthless in "weeding out" the crime. Also, do they not have lighters or anything that makes fire in that age? Why do they need Osmond specifically to light it? I thought they would make him burn his opponents -- instead he was nothing more than a match that is even easier stolen than food I guess. It's kind of artificially over-complicated IMO [/quote] I think the fact he makes Osmond do it is just a sick poke. Hart is a prick, see? I'm not sure what to say about the guard. I suppose the reason he's not so hard on the brothers is because they're so young. You can be sure he'd let the older boy have it. I think the guard's apparent unprofessional attitude is my attempt at humor. What do you mean exactly by artificially over-complicated? Edit: Now i think about it, I'm making Hart too easy to hate. Be assured that he becomes more likable. Edit #2: Also, Osmond does eventually start using his power to fight. Also! I've thought of a slightly different scenario for the guard. 'There's two of them watching the marketplace together. One notices the two children and teenager, and ss to the other 'Hey, look at this'. Such is there disdain for the state of the city, and the people who run it, that they just watch interestedly and comment on how young the children are turning to crime. Just a thought. Edit #3: I'm wondering if you mean artificially over-complicated in that i use conveniently occurring scenarios to get to where i want.
  13. The Last Verse

    I'm really all over the place at the moment Here's what I've thought of for their time in the teenage gang. In this part of their lives, they're introduced to fighting, murder, thievery and betrayal. They join the gang, under the leadership of a teenager named Hart, as it's beginning to turn into more of an organization. -- I won't go into too much detail, but after they run away from the Orphanage they're quickly inducted into a gang. After a vicious induction, where the leader beats Vegard for showing the slightest bit of attitude, and terrifies Osmond, they're taken warmly under one teenagers wing. This older teenager is called Andes. He acts as a mentor, and as a protector. He teaches them how to steal, and fight, and in their first brawl, he stabs and kills another boy to save Osmond. Through this early period of gang life, a very young Osmond relies completely on Vegard for comfort. He has nightmares every night, and he feels deep regret for taking things that don't belong to him. He can only sleep in the same bed as Vegard to begin with, but he stops this shortly after he joins, to prove that he can be tough. Vegard assimilation into this lifestyle is much easier. He gets excited by the prospect of stealing, and thinks nothing of it morally. Though he's embarrassed by Osmond's youth and weakness, and inability to act like a 'real gang member', he still cares for him. He comforts him as he sleeps, and tries to protect him from the other gang members and the opposing gang. I think this is a fairly accurate portrayal of two impressionable kids, in a violent and exciting life. Another key character in these years is the Soldier, I'll call him Jim for now. Jim is a city guard, and patrols and watches over the central marketplace of the city. The first day the brothers and Andes steal from a stall, he watches with interest. Andes distracts the shopkeeper with small talk, while they two boys walk up behind them, and try to inconspicuously to steal food. He's humorously impressed by their nerve and tact, but feels a little sorry for the hapless shopkeeper. When they try the same trick, on a consecutive day, he makes his way to the alley they walked off into after their first thievery, and catches them as they run from the scene. He's impressed again as Andes tries to waylay him with a knife attack. After dispatching Andes with an unexpected display of Logi control, he takes the boys back to the shopkeeper where they're scolded and briefly smacked upside the head. They meet up again with Andes, embarrassed by their failure and subsequent scolding. Andes tells them that they're lucky, and that he had his ass-kicked the first time he stole. [i]What I plan to do with the story, is go through the first week or so of acclimatizing, then skip forward to a point where they're so used to it that I can concentrate on their exploits.[/i] [i]Moving on. The night after the brothers fail to steal.[/i] Hart and a group of older boys, quite drunk, venture out into the snowy night in search of excitement. In short, they taunt a couple of grown men into a fight, and get beaten and left bruised in the snow. This is terribly embarrassing for them, and Hart won't let it go until he gets back at them. Not long after, a boy who takes pleasure in teasing Osmond tells Hart in passing conversation that Osmond was having a nightmare one night, and when he woke up, he screamed and there was a burst of fire. [i]Let's assume there's some sort of legend known by most people about those warriors chosen by Logi, and the fire powers they commanded.[/i] Hart's skeptical, but curious. He approaches Osmond one night, while Vegard is there, and holds a piece of paper in front of him. He promises to be nice to Osmond if he 'lights it up' for him. Vegard is immediately troubled by the change of heart, and shakes his head quietly from behind Hart, so that Osmond can see. Hart notices Osmond looking behind him, and pushes Vegard and tells him 'playfully' to shut up. He turns to Osmond and tries to reassure him. Slowly, Osmond put the tip of his finger to the paper and lights it on fire. With this, Hart stands back and smiles, says thank you, and walks out. A few days later, the brothers go with a uncommonly large group of boys, including Hart and Andes, to the house of the men that beat Hart and his company up. They stop near the house, and once again Hart kneels to Osmond nicely. He holds up a bottle of spirits with a rag in it, and asks him to light it. Vegard realizes immediately what he wants to do with it, and shakes his head behind Hart again. Osmond, uncertain, asks why. Vegard keeps shaking his head, and Hart gets sick of it. He turns around and strikes Vegard, reminding him savagely to shut up. He turns back to Osmond, a little frenzied, and tells the terrified Osmond to light it. Osmond stutters, looking at Vegard lying hurt in the snow. Hart grabs him by the collar and lifts him up, and screams in his face for him to light the 'invented curse word' fire. In his absolute terror, little flames start igniting from Osmond's fingertips. Finally, Andes intervenes. He reminds Hart desperately that he's just a kid. Hart drops Osmond, and before the two older teenagers can start a heated argument, an unknown voice calls out from a nearby alleyway. Oops, went into detail. Comments/Criticism welcome and appreciated.
  14. The Last Verse

    I think this is more relative. [b]Running from the orphanage scene:[/b] Vegard is daring, and willing to flaunt the authority that the carer has. He sneaks downstairs, and even when he knows the carer is still awake, he keeps going. He takes the bread and sneaks back upstairs. When the carer is alerted to the presence, he runs back to his room, hides the bread quickly then listens at the door, ready to jump back into his and pretend to be asleep. When he attacks James, for seemingly being about to hurt Osmond, he's quite relentless. He dislikes the carer, that's clear, but the fact he willingly assaults him, violently, says there's some deep seated problem in his personality. What this says about Vegard as a child - He's stealing food in a house already plagued by poverty. This shows that he doesn't seem to care about anyone else in the house, bar his brother whom he would've shared the food with. So he's not very considerate of other people. He's not respectful of the carer at all. He doesn't like him. He thinks that if he doesn't get caught, there's nothing to worry about. He's just a kid, breaking the rules. ----- Osmond is more inclined to go to bed hungry than piss off the carer. In the scene, Osmond sits in bed, obviously not tired. When Vegard gets up to start moving, he's concerned for him and afraid of the carer. He waits and worries as Vegard sneaks around downstairs. When Vegard comes back, he calls him an idiot and waits to pretend to be asleep. When he realizes that the carer is yelling at a girl he likes for Vegards rule breaking, he doesn't wait for Vegard to intervene, knowing he has no troubles with someone else taking the rap. He opens his door, and tries as bravely as possible to distract the carer from the girl. He's terrified by the outcome, and when James starts on him angrily, he's too scared to move. Vegard doesn't care about the girl, but he cares about Osmond. He throws a pillow quickly at the mans face, and runs forward to hurt him in a place he knows is a weak spot. He kicks him in the head, another weak spot, which gives him a bit of a rush, and the brothers both know he's overstepped the line. He calls for Osmond, and they run away together. What this says about Osmond is that - He's impulsive, and gets himself into shit he can't handle. Though, he'll avoid trouble if he can.
  15. The Last Verse

    [quote name='JoeCooper' timestamp='1309304243' post='4828869'] "[color="#1c2837"][size="2"][b][font="Arial"]TLV [/font][/b]is the story of two brothers, born and bred in a dieing city with a seemingly perpetual winter. They abandon the safety of an orphans life, and delve into the violence of the streets and a life of teenage criminals." [/size][/color] [color="#1c2837"] [/color] [color="#1c2837"][size="2"]This is an [i]excellent[/i] paragraph.[/size][/color] [/quote] /self-props Continually editing small parts of the little story.
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