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story challenge (a cure for boredom)

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  • story challenge (a cure for boredom)

    Perdix is experiencing that condition that Baudelaire referred to as "spleen." Not much is going on here of late, after a burst of activity last week.

    So here's a challenge: when nothing is happening, make something up. Specifically, I'd like to see some short stories, which can be posted in this thread, if anyone is interested. (If no one is interested, I can always delete this thread.)

    I'm going to propose a theme: the short story should be set against a backdrop of some city you know well, projected 25-30 years in the future. The story shouldn't be "about" the changes that have taken place, but they should reflect those changes, and perhaps some aspect of those changes will lead to tension with what your protagonist is trying to do. It can be dystopian or utopian, as you please.

    Length can be short-short (500 - 2000 words) up to novella (25-50K words), at your discretion. You own the rights, of course.

    Anyone interested?

    LSN

  • #2
    I could try this. I need something to break me out of the block that is preventing me from writing anything for Prototype I.
    Yuki says, "Krimson used to be known as Kommando, but he rarely uses that name anymore. Sometimes he appears as Krimson Gray as well. Do not be confused, he still loves cats and bagels."

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    • #3
      Please give it a try, Kommando. Anyone else who is interested, too.

      I can make story suggestions of this sort in great abundance, if it's helpful for those who are stuck about something they'd like to write about.

      The trick I've always found works is to consider something about which you feel strongly, then use that as a springboard. Not everyone is interested in the same things, of course, so different suggestions work better for different people.

      LSN

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      • #4
        I'm interested, but I have to get through two other things I'm finishing. I have an idea about the small town where I grew up...

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        • #5
          Doc,

          Please contribute something when you get the chance.

          Your home town. Hmm. I gather you teach in Texas near Austin, but from your pattern of usage, I'd speculate your home town wasn't in Texas. Ohio, maybe? I could, of course, be mistaken. :-]

          Don't answer, by the way.

          LSN (who comes from nowhere)

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          • #6
            50k words! 8O

            Are you sure that wouldn't fracture the database LSN. :)

            Does it have to be a real city?

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            • #7
              If you really want to write 50K words, we'll break out a special thread for you and let you publish it one chapter-per-post. That would work, don't you think? If someone actually writes that much, we'll find a way.

              If you don't want to use a real city, but some interesting invention of your highly convoluted brain, we'll consider that within the rules. I don't recommend it for most people, but I'll agree it's doable.

              As a baroque variation of this notion, take a city you know and transmogrify it via your imagination, THEN project it into the future.

              That would work, I think.

              LSN

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              • #8
                The person from whom I'd really like to see a contribution on this theme is Dee. Dislike for something can be a strong fuel for these sorts of productions.

                I doubt he'll indulge, but it's possible.

                LSN

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                • #9
                  Actually, the Dent Method has intrigued me. I haven't written to a concrete structure since I was about 13*, and it would be an interesting experiment. I could never write "serious" detective fiction, but I do have a very bad idea for a futuristic twist on the old "femme fatale"... so I may very well chance my arm.

                  Actually, I can't recall when I last wrote any actual fiction. Hmmm...

                  * In an English class the teacher set us the task of writing a "novel" each, but every chapter had to follow the theme or pattern that she demanded. Chapter Two was "a spanner in the works", so I (being the sarcastic brat I was/am) had the protagonist find an actual spanner in the "works" of his motorbike... somehow this led him to enter a parallel universe, but I don't remember how. :?
                  "That which does not kill us, makes us stranger." - Trevor Goodchild

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                  • #10
                    Give it a try, Dee, if you're willing. I'd be interested to see the results.

                    Then send it to Perdix and complicate his life. :lol:

                    (He doesn't have enough submissions for the current issue. )

                    LSN

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by DeeCrowSeer
                      * In an English class the teacher set us the task of writing a "novel" each, but every chapter had to follow the theme or pattern that she demanded. Chapter Two was "a spanner in the works", so I (being the sarcastic brat I was/am) had the protagonist find an actual spanner in the "works" of his motorbike... somehow this led him to enter a parallel universe, but I don't remember how. :?
                      When I woz at skul we were told to write on the topic of "Crossing the Channel Singlehanded" so I spun an improbable yarn about an amputee!
                      \"...an ape reft of his tail, and grown rusty at climbing, who yet feels himself to be a symbol and the frail representative of Omnipotence in a place that is not home.\" James Branch Cabell

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Mikey_C
                        Originally posted by DeeCrowSeer
                        * In an English class the teacher set us the task of writing a "novel" each, but every chapter had to follow the theme or pattern that she demanded. Chapter Two was "a spanner in the works", so I (being the sarcastic brat I was/am) had the protagonist find an actual spanner in the "works" of his motorbike... somehow this led him to enter a parallel universe, but I don't remember how. :?
                        When I woz at skul we were told to write on the topic of "Crossing the Channel Singlehanded" so I spun an improbable yarn about an amputee!
                        Can you recreate it for Perdix's magazine? :lol:

                        By the way, Mikey_C, I received your e-mail. You should go to your profile on MWM and update your e-mail address, when you get the chance.

                        LSN

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by L_Stearns_Newburg
                          Give it a try, Dee, if you're willing.
                          Well, I knocked out the first part this afternoon (it's little over 1500 words, but I haven't been back through to trim it yet) and I'm rather pleased with it so far. I came up with an idea for a story setting years ago (inspired by a skit performed by a band called the Fun Lovin' Criminals) (if anyone else out there has their DVD, I'm talking about "Maui Homicide") and I've finally found a use for it, and a few of the city's more interesting citizens... so I'm very happy about that. I'm not sure how strictly I'm adhering to Dent's Method, since I naturally tend towards humour rather than action, but it does satisfy some of his criteria. I don't have the faintest clue where it's going, but the writing was a lot of fun anyway. If I do complete it, I'll be sure to submit my story to Perdix, if only to see the protagonist finally make it into print. Either way, I may put it up on my website for those who are curious.

                          To whet your appetite (or put you off completely) here's the first paragraph:

                          There was an old joke in The Crash that if ever the city's police detectives wanted to play "good cop/bad cop", they had to wait for the next class of cadets to graduate. It wasn't a very clever joke, but then only a very foolish woman would dare to cross this city's thin blue line anyway... and that very foolish woman went by the name of "Nutmeg" Rodriguez.
                          :D
                          "That which does not kill us, makes us stranger." - Trevor Goodchild

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                          • #14
                            I urge you to finish the work. Please post it here. Do it in installments, if you like. If you want comments as you proceed, we can supply them. If not, we'll just enjoy the work as it unfolds.

                            The epigrammatic humor approach seems well suited to your needs and predilections.

                            LSN

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                            • #15
                              Well, as noted in the writing thread in the Q&A section, characters do sometimes take on a life of their own and drag you along. I think I'm hooked on the city I've created and "that very foolish woman", so hopefully I'll finish this current story. If it works, I'd like to explore the city a little more. The way I see it the story will go straight from the low-spots to the high-spots, leaving plenty of opportunity to explore the middle-ground in later stories. Assuming anyone lives past the end of this one! :)

                              Since I've only a rough idea of where the plot is going, I'll probably refrain from posting installments here, because I may need to backtrack! :) Also, it might not go anywhere at all, and then I'd have wasted all this bandwidth for nothing.
                              "That which does not kill us, makes us stranger." - Trevor Goodchild

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