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Re: Fantasy Memes and silly stuff about books from the internet
December 19, 2015, 06:40:58 PM
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Re: Fantasy Memes and silly stuff about books from the internet
January 10, 2016, 02:43:56 PM
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Re: [Jan 2016] - Breaking the fourth wall - Voting Thread Forgot to say my vote is in. I had to pick between two good stories for the fourth spot.
February 02, 2016, 09:15:10 PM
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Re: Relating to characters I would say use the opportunity to explore the aspects of their personality and the values that conflict with your own. Put yourself in their shoes and see what it would be like if you compromised your beliefs to take part in something that you would normally find abhorrent in your personal life.

If you are a pacifist then explore the mindset of someone who kills indiscriminately with no emotional attachment or because they liked it, even got off on it. If you have more traditional views on sex then explore the mindset of someone that has no qualms about being aggressive towards women and fulfilling the character's base urges regardless of how it effects those he has slept with.

My MC is pretty much at a moral and ethical state of neutrality. He has done things that many would find despicable, and other things that many would consider selfless or heroic. His story arc shows how his morals and ethics have transformed from the more idealistic to more cold and calculating because of different life experiences.

February 03, 2016, 12:58:29 PM
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Re: Relating to characters What does the word "relating" even mean? The more I think about it the less I think I have any idea what people even talk about.

After two hours of searching the internet, the term "relatable" actually got me two replies that really try to explain the concept.

Relatable: The adjective that is everywhere but means nothing
The 'Relatable' Falacy

So much for that.

Interesting sidetrack, but that's not what Blackthorn was asking about with the original question. It was "How do you effectively write characters you have very little in common with?", and I am interpreting this as how we can make characters that readers enjoy reading about.

Many of my favorite characters are people I find very dispicable and lacking any sympathetic qualities and with whom I have nothing in common. Kane, Darth Vader, Walter White, Lucy from Elfen Lied. But many times I really enjoy a character it's because I understand them and think I've figured them out. And perhaps there's also a reaction of joy to keep following them and seeing if my guesses about them are right. I've not thought about it in this way before, but I sound quite convicing to myself right now.

I think what makes a character interesting and entertaining to follow is to learn about them, getting a more complete picture of them, and gaining an understanding of how they think and what they want. This is to me the primary meaning of "character development". Not so much how they change through the story, but how their personalty is expanded.
To create characters to which this applies requires that you have to understand them yourself. You need to have a pretty good idea of what they want, how they think, and how they act, so that you can remain consistent throughout the full length of the story. Or in case you want the character to go through a change through the course of the story, you need to understand the change and how it is happening. Once you got that you need to put the character in various different situations to which they can react according to their motives, thinking, and abilities; and through which they can show new aspects of their personalty. If you have a character whose story consist of fighting orcs six times, trolls two times, and a dragon one time, you won't really show any new facet of the character to the audience after the second or third fight. Instead you'd better cut out half of the fight scenes and perhaps replace them with a scene in which he encounters an escaped prisoner, one scene in which a wounded enemy wants to surrender, and one scene in which he has to get through a heavily reinforced gate quickly. As the character deals with different situation, we get to see different facets of his personalty, and if they remain consistent we can get a better picture of them as a real person.

February 03, 2016, 10:14:05 PM
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Re: Relating to characters The problem I see with "freestyle" writing is that the plot that emerges from it will largely be situations and developments that come intuitively to mind while you are writing. And intuition tells us to follow the path we're already familiar with. Which in this case means following stereotypes and even cliches.
Doing something new and clever isn't likely to happen by accident. You have to actively decide to get off the beaten path with a purpose or you will quickly drift back to it because that's what comes naturally.

If your focus is on reflection and atmosphere, heading out without a goal could probably get you pretty interesting results in that area. (I don't really read stories of that kind myself.) But if you want to do stories with an emphasis on characters being clever, mysteries being solved, and things connecting together in unexpected ways, I think you need to have a pretty good idea of where the story starts, where it ends, and who the actors are before you begin with the first draft.
Or you end up with something like Lost or X-Files where the audience just throws their hands up and resign any hope that there will be a satisfying payoff in the end. Or it's highly predictable the entire time.

February 04, 2016, 08:05:56 PM
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Re: Help With Ideas?? Any and every concept of Fantasy has been done before, whether it be magic systems, character similarities, etc. the odds of coming up with something completely original are slim to none.
Since I've read Percy Jackson, I can tell you that unless you're copying it directly, you can do so many more things with titans than that plot. Just because it has elements from one fantasy series in it does not make it a copy. I point to riyria Revelations for the best examples of well-done and twisted tropes.
You can also do fun things with demons, it just can't be a copy of something else. and by a copy, I mean you've read another book with dragons hunting demons and you want to copy it. I've never heard of that being done before. I'm sure it has, but I haven't read it yet.

February 06, 2016, 04:32:49 PM
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Re: Best Series? I'm the bag for Dragonlance. LotR and Narnia are better, but if I'm being shipped off to a desert island and I only get one of those five fantasy series that I have to reread over and over again (and possibly build my house out of), I'm going Dragonlance Chronicles.

(Presumably getting all 242 titles would be a bit of a cheat.)

February 11, 2016, 05:51:16 PM
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Prequel? I don't understand the question.
Why should it be not appropriate?

The better question is, if the reader gains something from it. And that's an answer only you can give.

February 11, 2016, 06:48:34 PM
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Re: Best Series? None of those in my opinion.

Can't decide what the best is, tho. Maybe one of the Discworld series....

February 11, 2016, 08:32:36 PM
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