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The Writers' Workshop


Tatile's Avatar


Tatile
03.16.2013 , 07:21 AM | #81
An inter-galactic seems a bit much (but that's more my "don't try to muss with what's there" stance), but certainly a Darth and a Jedi Master would fight over it (and the child). If we ignore the idea of midichlorians (I personally do, and I'm no Star Wars purist), then a Force Blind becoming Force Sensitive - or having the sensitivity unlocked - via holocron could be possible. Sith holocrons have a tendency to corrupt the user because it's Sith, that's what they do, so a particularly ambitious Sith could have designed ones to create Force Sensitives - perhaps because s/he was a human purist or this was part of an extended experiment on lesser species.

It's certainly a workable idea, it just depends on what angle you approach it from.

Caernos's Avatar


Caernos
03.16.2013 , 09:13 AM | #82
Non-force sensitives gaining force sensitivity is definitely a possibility, see the Scepter of Ragnos and The Valley of the Jedi. Both are from the Jedi Knight series of games, but play important parts in the games' events as the villains use them to bestow force sensitivity to their minions to fight Kyle Katarn and Jaden Korr.

So I would say yes, if you want a character to go from No force powers, to force powers, it is possible.
Cynfor Cinderheart and the Cinderheart Legacy: The Ebon Hawk
The FanFic Works of Caernos:
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Osetto's Avatar


Osetto
03.16.2013 , 11:34 AM | #83
Quote: Originally Posted by joeltejadaespion View Post
In Tattooine there was a young boy and a young girl who was playing out in the desert. They then went to a cave, but something was calling out to the boy from deep within. Deeper and deeper he went, he found a small Holocron, a data with immense knowledge. Exposed by its secrets, the young boy was then knocked out, reducing the Holocron to explode after it's use. The young boy, with immense wealth of knowledge in the force, and a map that could signal a red flag of a new war. The Jedi and Sith will be looking for him, and the drums of war will thunder all across the galaxy.

I was doing some research on Holocrons, wonder if they do corrupt a non force sensitive individual at a early age, and also wonder if a non sensitive force user begins to use the force after such exposure. I was also thinking make the brother and the sister (the young boy and girl) separated, one in Sith and one in Jedi after that event, something of a epic galactic war to break out after the discovery of the Sith. I am open to all suggestions and also critiques are more than welcome about this idea.
Holocrons are weird. The simplest ones can be used as simple repositories of knowledge, but those of grand design are limited only by their creator. Also, sometimes a holocron isn't just a holocron. It might serve a dual, sometimes hidden, purpose. One thing to note is that Sith Holocrons were born from Rakatan design, and the Force-technologies utilized by the Rakata often seem unlimited in purpose and scope. So if designed to, a holocron infused with the Dark-side could have any number of effects on its user or even someone who spends a great deal of time around it.

Holocrons are often depicted in games as imparting not only knowledge, but power and skills to individuals. In TOR, we have ancient datacrons which infuse a tangible increase in skill in any individual who activates them, regardless of Force-sensitivity. But this could all be for the convenience of game mechanics and progression. In actual storytelling, holocrons are generally reserved for housing ancient knowledge or teachings intended for Force-users. But an artifact's an artifact, and if it involves the Force there's probably nothing saying it can't do something. I mean... Rakghoul plague, the Force. Zombies, the Force. Immortality, the Force.

On the topic of imparting Force-sensitivity upon the non-Force-sensitive, there's always the chance of something activating or awakening 'latent' Force sensitivity in someone who would otherwise go their entire life unaware of their connection to the Force. And if you want to start from someone who's full on Forceblind, well, you infuse enough Force energies into something and who knows what'll happen.
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joeltejadaespion's Avatar


joeltejadaespion
03.16.2013 , 01:25 PM | #84
Thanks, much appreciated, I have started the prologue, just worked on it today, I might be able to edit it afterwards. But, thanks again ^_^

Canino's Avatar


Canino
03.16.2013 , 04:03 PM | #85
I'm back! But yeah, I have a problem. I was writing my fanifction (see sig) but I suddenly got writer's block. Now normally, it takes me a few days to get through a good writer's block, but this has lasted months. I am just wondering if there are any tips to get though it, and how I should begin posting again. To me, it would be a little odd to stop posting for a few months and then suddenly post again. Maybe that's just me. Any thoughts?

P.S. I wrote another chapter after I stopped for a while, but it I haven't posted yet. I am also the type of guy to write and post at the same time, so a story is never done when I begin posting. I also don't really do the outlining thing. It just hasn't appealed to me. I normally just let the story go, but it seems that this is also a source of my writer's block. Any tips for this as well?
STATEMENT: I'm just a simple assassin...I mean bodyguard, master. You have nothing to fear.
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Osetto's Avatar


Osetto
03.16.2013 , 10:31 PM | #86
Quote: Originally Posted by Canino View Post
I'm back! But yeah, I have a problem. I was writing my fanifction (see sig) but I suddenly got writer's block. Now normally, it takes me a few days to get through a good writer's block, but this has lasted months. I am just wondering if there are any tips to get though it, and how I should begin posting again. To me, it would be a little odd to stop posting for a few months and then suddenly post again. Maybe that's just me. Any thoughts?

P.S. I wrote another chapter after I stopped for a while, but it I haven't posted yet. I am also the type of guy to write and post at the same time, so a story is never done when I begin posting. I also don't really do the outlining thing. It just hasn't appealed to me. I normally just let the story go, but it seems that this is also a source of my writer's block. Any tips for this as well?
I write in much the same way as you do. Start something, and keep writing it as long as the ideas readily flow from my mind. Only when nearing the ending of one of my stories have I actually planned ahead, jotting notes of what will happen in each upcoming chapter (which I've technically already deviated from), Times would come when I knew where I wanted things to go, but the actual process of writing seemed to escape me.

What works for me, is that whenever you find yourself unable or unwilling to proceed, just stop and take a step back from your piece. Trying to force something forward will rarely yield results, and whatever those results are, they often prove unsatisfying. Oddly enough, my trick for when I cannot write... it to write. Something different though. I have six unfinished stories posted on these boards. I started with one, then wanted to try something different. Then during the course of that, found a new appreciation for the previous piece. I don't know how far back I'd be on 'Acolyte Ascension' if I hadn't taken a break to work on 'The Dawn Eclipse'. Hopping from piece to piece has yielded much more content than what I would have produced had I focused on a single one.

Sometimes you don't even need to put forth a great deal of effort starting something new. Just the thought process behind thinking about new characters and stories can jog something in your mind. Take a break, find out what inspires you, and utilize that. I want to write after I see a new movie, play a new game, think about tabletop RPGs. Creativity begets creativity. What are you writing about? What made you want to write about that in the first place? What makes you want to continue writing about it? Something made you want to begin. Something will make you want to continue. Find out what stimulates you, even if it is something far removed from writing.

Everyone's mind works differently. We're unique in our responses, our organization tendencies, and how we operate most efficiently. I know for me, once I've planned absolutely everything out, that story is dead to me. How structured your approach to writing is, is entirely up to you, as only you can adequately judge the results.

As for posting after a long absence, the nature of the forums allows for little complication. A new post, no matter how far apart will still be right next to its predecessors. If people have forgotten what preceded it, the content will be right there above it. Paired with an author's note, maybe a quick recap of what has happened so far, there shouldn't be any reason to worry about new posts no matter how delayed they are.
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Ventessel's Avatar


Ventessel
03.20.2013 , 02:32 AM | #87
Quote: Originally Posted by kabeone View Post
The Swampy Middle.

So I have a question regarding transition scenes in my story. I know where I am, I know where I want to go, but there's some stuff in the middle that I need to set things up and sometimes it's kind of boring, feels overly long, has too much dialog and not enough description, or whatever.

Question for writers: Do you try to make every scene have an impact? Obviously, not every scene can be a climax but if you find a scene drags on or seems to have way too much dialog or feels boring BUT it contains important set up stuff for later scenes. What do you do? rewrite? delete? hope the reader doesn't mind?

Question for readers: How do you feel about those set up scenes. I know some people love a lot of detail, a lot of setup, (obviously if it's done well it won't be boring). But some people like action and purpose in nearly every scene or they get bored and quit reading. What kind of reader are you?
Here's my take on "set up scenes".

If I jump straight into the action, as a reader, I expect to be able to figure out what's happening fairly quickly, or at least for the characters I'm reading about to share my confusion. Unless you deliberately are creating mystery or intrigue, there's no reason not to inform the reader what's happening. Often, it's best to set things up before the action starts, because if you have to keep stopping and explaining the action, it kills the pacing.

Detail for the sake of detail is not only unnecessary, it's boring. If something needs to be described, do so. Anything that will be important for visualizing a scene, or will become important for the purposes of plot or action, should be described in enough detail that the reader can picture it. Depending on the object or scene, this can vary a great deal. Sometimes a certain level of description is needed to set a certain mood or tone, and that's also fine. The thing to avoid is pointless description, where the reader finishes reading it and can't figure out why on earth it was being described in the first place.

As a writer, don't feel the need to make every scene climactic or "meaningful". Rather, you should have a reason for showing the reader this scene. In your mind, justify to yourself why you're spending valuable story-telling depicting this event. Once you know why the reader needs to see the scene, you'll have a better conception of when to start and stop, or what details to focus on. Many times, a scene occurs because it advances the plot, or includes important character development.

For example, if Joe gets up in the morning to go to work, I don't need to be shown that scene unless it becomes relevant later. If nothing extraordinary happens, and he gets to work just fine, there's no reason to show the reader. You can just mention that he arrives at work.

However, if you want to show that Joe is lazy and disorganized, he can get up late, rush to find his things, and stumble out the door to barely make it into work that day. Alternatively, perhaps Joe is meticulous and gets up at 0500 to exercise and make a cup of coffee before he leaves for work half an hour early.

With every scene, ask yourself if you've fulfilled one (preferably more) of the following goals:
-Develop a character (or better still, two)
-Advance the plot (through action or dialogue, or both)
-Introduce important places or things (can be setting exposition, or familiarizing characters or the reader with plot-related items/things.)

Everything else is essentially fluff, and a reader can tell when you're stalling for time or just meandering through a scene with no particular purpose. Some people may enjoy reading endless descriptions of various places and things, but the average reader will lose interest very quickly unless you hold their attention with characters and plot motion. A scene needs to be dynamic, things needs to happen. Dialogue can be more interesting than action, as long as it is clear that something is at stake. Nothing is worse than meaningless dialogue, always bear in mind why the characters are talking and what they're trying to say or find out. This will help you to guide the dialogue and know what needs to be included and what doesn't.
The Heir to ChaosAdded Chapter Sixteen-- 17 APR 2013
“People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” ~ George Orwell

bright_ephemera's Avatar


bright_ephemera
03.20.2013 , 07:52 AM | #88
Excellent writeup, Ventessel. I'm pinning this to my Big Board o' Editing Advice.
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Ventessel's Avatar


Ventessel
03.20.2013 , 11:19 AM | #89
Quote: Originally Posted by bright_ephemera View Post
Excellent writeup, Ventessel. I'm pinning this to my Big Board o' Editing Advice.
Good to hear, I'd be curious what else is on this Board o' Editing Advice.
The Heir to ChaosAdded Chapter Sixteen-- 17 APR 2013
“People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” ~ George Orwell

bright_ephemera's Avatar


bright_ephemera
03.20.2013 , 06:30 PM | #90
Quote: Originally Posted by Ventessel View Post
Good to hear, I'd be curious what else is on this Board o' Editing Advice.
I can certainly share my favorite scraps of editing advice, in no particular order:

Voice checking: Vesaniae's awesome recommendation – read everything out loud before posting. It'll tell me if anything about the characterization or diction is wrong in my dialogue. In addition it will give me a sense for the flow of the passage – do the phrases run fast where I want them to, slower where I meant them to? Is there some poetry to it and is it the poetry that was intended, or an accidental one that sabotages the desired effect?

Why is this scene even here? Ventessel's freshly added advice, with lots of relevant stuff I won't copy in full here. In short,
Quote:
"With every scene, ask yourself if you've fulfilled one (preferably more) of the following goals:
-Develop a character (or better still, two)
-Advance the plot (through action or dialogue, or both)
-Introduce important places or things (can be setting exposition, or familiarizing characters or the reader with plot-related items/things.)"
Revision runs: At some point, between dashing off the first draft and publishing, read the draft several times through:
  • Once for sanity - whatever the challenge going on in this scene, how would the characters really decide to deal with it? What options would they think up? Why are they choosing the course of action they're choosing? If there is more than one logical solution to the problem, and especially if there's a solution that is far simpler and more elegant than the one I'm demanding for my plot purposes, I must make sure to acknowledge that alternate solution and give a very good reason for it not being done. Or just do it the simpler alternate way and force my plot to catch up.
  • Once for POV – am I keeping a consistent POV and does all vocabulary and observation, particularly the choice and prioritization of what is observed, get appropriately filtered through that character's POV?
  • Once for setting and continuity - does the reader have all necessary information about the physical space and does it remain consistent?
  • Once for dialogue, and here's where the voice check helps. In addition, can the reader tell who is speaking at any given time?
  • Once for spelling, punctuation, grammar, appropriate syntax, and any stray words that got orphaned during sentence revisions.

Paring down: Never delete. Cut any language that needs cutting and store it in a Scraps section or separate file. It is probable that you will never use those particular phrases again. It is possible that some statement that genuinely does not belong in this scene will turn out to be ideal for a scene you write later. Be merciless in reducing a scene to its necessary elements, but set the rejected passages aside rather than deleting them outright.

Further characterization context: For each character, is there something in their past that explains their speech and actions in this scene, and do their speech and actions in this scene support/point to/contrast with how they'll be speaking and acting in the future? The degree to which these connections are or aren't made obvious is a question I leave to the demands of the narrative, but the connections must, on some level, exist.

Then a few quotes: Here's a pep talk on crummy first drafts that includes Sir Terry Pratchett's helpful observation, “The first draft is just you telling yourself the story.” Subsequent drafts are all about removing and shaping material until you can do a good job of telling the reader the story.

Thoreau: "Simplify, simplify, simplify!"

William Strunk, Jr., quoted in the introduction to the Macmillan Paperbacks edition of Strunk and White's The Elements of Style: "Vigorous writing is concise. A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts. This requires not that the writer make all his sentences short, or that he avoid all detail and treat his subjects only in outline, but that every word tell."

Point 14 from that same volume: "Avoid fancy words. Avoid the elaborate, the pretentious, the coy and the cute. Do not be tempted by a twenty-dollar word when there is a ten-center handy, ready and able. Anglo-Saxon is a livelier tongue than Latin, so use Anglo-Saxon words. In this, as in so many matters pertaining to style, one's ear must be one's guide: gut is a lustier noun than intestine, but the two words are not interchangeable, because gut is often inappropriate, being too coarse for the context. Never call a stomach a tummy without good reason."
the Short Fic Weekly Challenge - 90+ authors to date. 2500+ stories. New prompts weekly!
Bright's Fanfic Threads
Ceterum autem censeo, Malavai esse delendam.