Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Astaroth, Aug 7, 2013.

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  1. Do you have a question or problem regarding CREATIVE issues? If you want to know something about or are struggling with crafting plots, generating settings, understanding genres, getting past writer's block, or other creative elements of writing, just post here and a Professor or volunteer will help you!

    #1 Astaroth, Aug 7, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2014
  2. I've never really been able to think of themes, prompts, or even sometimes replies on my own. I was wondering if I could get some help/tips?
  3. Themes and prompts are usually triggered or inspired by something, but there are plenty of story idea generators or writing prompt exercises online if you find yourself a bit dry of inspiration.

    Replies are a bit more straight-forward as they really should accomplish two things. One, you are responding to what the other character is saying/doing as it applies to your character. They don't even have to be interacting directly with you. It could be something as simple as doing something that catches your character's attention. Two, your reply should advance the story in some way. For this, it helps to have a general storyline or character goal in place or in mind at least, so your character is not just wandering aimlessly. Even if you're in the middle of a conversation, that conversation should be heading somewhere, and accomplishing something. It could be as simple as reaffirming a character trait, or coming to a decision about something. If you have a goal in mind, then you can think about how to reach that goal.

    The writing challenges in the Challenges forum are a good way to practice. There are plenty of plot and character challenges that can get your mind working, and maybe even find some inspiration of your own!
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  4. I want to make a Godzilla themed roleplay.

    The problem is, while I wouldn't mind people to have monsters as characters I want the role play to be about the humans struggling to cope with the sudden monster sprees. Comics like "Godzilla ongoing" and "Rulers of Earth" inspired me to do this. I want it to be something like "Godzilla: Kaiju Wars"

    My main issue is creating a setting where people want to control the humans/Aliens for most of the plot with monster attacks and intervention. I have a lot of ideas for alternative origins of monsters-
    For example, Orga getting DNA from Ghidorah and Godzilla and mutating into Bagan (who has never been in the movie)

    I just don't know how to make it all come together.
  5. I really, really want to run an Fantasy RP, but I'm having trouble writing a plot.
  6. @OverCast

    Well, "fantasy" is a pretty broad term. Maybe it would help you to pinpoint what about fantasy is appealing to you at the moment or to pick a subgenre.
  7. I find the best way to stay in character is to get to know your character more! Try doing interviews and quizzes with your character in Creative Challenges and the exercise board here; focus on getting to know how they react to things, and how those reactions differ from what you would do. Proper proofreading (writing a post, taking a minute, and then retreading it to check for errors) can also be used to catch this problem
  8. Can anyone help with some ideas on how to make a map?
  9. We got you covered over in the Worldbuilding Guild - that entire forum is dedicated to fleshing out settings!

    When I'm making a map, I find it helpful to remember the following:
    1. Build the environment first, THEN add cities, etc
      People build around the land, the land is not built around people.

    2. If you know stuff about the people who live in the place you are mapping, consider them when making the map. If your people live mostly off of forestry, then there's probably not many deserts nearby. If your culture is especially warlike, they've probably picked a place to settle where they can easily defend themselves and hold their armies
    Mapping workshop

    Tips on Mapmaking

    Mapmaking software (great for islands)

    Another mapmaking method
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  10. Thanks for the resources!! :D
  11. I always get horrible writer's block, and can't generate starters well. I always end up asking for my partner to write the starter, because I can't generate settings and plots well. When I do have ideas, I can't seem to type them out right. Can someone help me with this?
  12. I've always been curious as to what a writing excerpt with the 'gore' content rating would be. How do you describe the high quantity of blood and/or physical injury? How do you make it descriptive? I would love to see some examples of writing excerpts containing well-thought out depictions of gore! The thing is, I don't mind it, but I've never actually written gore before so I'm not exactly sure on how it would be depicted in writing. An extensive PM discussion would be even more wonderful aside from the writing excerpts! I want to write gore!
  13. I'm not a big splatterfan either, but I love me some horror! I think describing gore is the same as describing anything, so you need to decide a few things first

    • Am I going for gross-out or scary?
    • Do I want it realistic or over-the-top splatter?
    • How should the reader feel about the person/thing which just got ripped up? Sorry for them? Scared by them? A little satisfied?
    What's a good idea and what's not really depends a lot on these things. I find if you're going for gross-out, you should think of things that are well, gross, and try to draw parallels. Rotten things are gross, so you may say that the smell of the corpse in the room was like rotting meat (bonus points for tying the idea of a corpse to something edible - eewwww!!) Or think of how you'd describe the feel, texture, smell, sight, etc of gross things like vomit, pus, open sores, etc.

    I think that whatever tone you're going for, you should avoid being clinical. You're painting a picture, not writing a medical textbook! don't say they had a complete fracture of the femur, say their leg had been cracked like a toothpick, and describe what it looked like. Is the bone poking out? What impressions does that make? Is there a lot of blood? What's it on? Is it still flowing, dripping, or spurting?

    Oh, and if you're going for scary, same principles as the gross things. Scary scenes, for me personally, are action-based. Use your active and powerful verbs to your advantage! Don't say the room stank, say that the smell rushed at the protagonist's face as soon as they opened the door. 'rushed' is an action word, and gives the image of the character being assaulted by the smell. Think of things commonly associated with fear and tie them in. What's scary for different people is going to be as varied as what's gross for different people, but you can usually find a few mainstays.

    Here's an assembly of links for help writing gore
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  14. Sorry for the late response! I totally missed my alert for this. If you still need help, I hope this is useful:

    A starter needs to do these things:

    • Set up the scene
    • Set up the plot
    • Set up the character
    The reason starter posts tend to be a bit longer than story posts is because of these extra needs, so let's tackle them one at a time.

    To set up a scene:
    Setting up the scene means you need to assemble a good picture of WHERE this is all happening. Your setup should not only be visual (what the place looks like) but provide an atmosphere as well. Take a moment to think about the area your character is in; that kinds of things are around them? What time of day is it, and what is the weather like? What is the atmosphere? Is it tense? Carefree? lazy? Use description that reflects this; consider the tone and implications of your verbs, adverbs, and adjectives, and choose the ones that best fit the mood you're trying to create. Did the sun 'shine brightly into the room?' did it 'stream in with a steady, unrelenting heat?' or did it 'warm through the window, with meandering specks of dust floating in the beams'? Each of those examples describe sunshine, but each one creates a different image and mood. Remember also to choose the details that are important and help to set up the scene; you can leave out obvious things like that there were stars in the sky at night, or that it was cold in the winter, or people were having fun at the festival.

    To set up the plot
    This one is semi-optional, but the first post should do something to get the story started. Try to show instead of tell on this point; it's usually better to have the plot come up organically than to have some NPC come up and spout exposition so that the characters understand the story. If the story is about hunting a dragon, there could be a prominent notice pinned up advertising the quest. If the story is about someone moving to a haunted house, you could mention that something seemed off about the place. It just has to get the ball rolling.

    Set up the character
    For most, this is the easy part. Your intro post needs to bring your character onto the scene, paint a quick image of what they look like, and show a bit of their personality and the impressions they make. Here's a little workshop on how much visual description is necessary in an intro post (a very common mistake is describing way too much in the starter post)
  15. I've been trying to think of plots, and I thought of a premise I really like, but I'm not sure which genre it should go under.

    It takes place in a future where the modern Earth had basically been magically merged with an alternate universe where magical beings exist. The time period is less than a hundred years in the future, with a mixture of modern, science fiction, and fantasy technology. Most of the planet has been reclaimed by plant life, and technology has advanced to the point of life-like artificial beings through science and magic.

    •There are going to be classic fantasy elements (magic, elves, and whatnot).

    •It's roughly a hundred years or less in the future.

    I haven't gotten the exact details ironed out yet, but that's something for a different thread.

    What I need help with is: Is this still fantasy, or would it go better under science fiction? And what subgenre would it fall under?
  16. @Cyan I would put it in Sci-Fi, using the subgenre Science Fantasy!
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