1. slipperywhenwet
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    slipperywhenwet New Member

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    A level short story

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by slipperywhenwet, Dec 27, 2006.

    Hi everyone first post so nice to meet you all. Right well basically i really like to write fiction, dont do it as much as i should or would like to but thats irreelivant. In my A level eng lang course i need to do a piece of own writing be it an interview, short story etc. I'v decided to do a short story and i would like to run some ideas past you all.
    Okay, the setting is in Somalia/Ethiopia some african country not sure yet, and is based primarily around a short ut brutal conflict between some native africans and some white americans/british whatever thats not important yet. Anyway the book starts with the main character, a male, reading an extract from a teach yourself chess book. The theme of this chess book are carried throughout the story obviouslyrelated ot the engagement in my story to that of a game of chess. Obviously there will be more to it than that but that is the bare,bare,bare bones of it. Just something to work from. I was wanting some kind of feed back on both the above text and ideas and also on how you think the story could develop. Thank you very much for reading and sorry for the wall of text. Cheers.
     
  2. Max Vantage
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    Max Vantage Banned

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    I'm not sure I understand.
    Are you likening the chess to the short battle?

    If so then I might have a workable idea for you.
    You don't have to do massive amounts of research to understand the continent of Africa, but one thing I know is that Africans are deeply religious folk, more so than the rest of us who brought it to them through missionary workers.
    If I'm understanding your idea correctly what you could possibly write about is an intelligent man who has a greater level of logic and puzzle-solving skills, hence the interest in the game of chess.
    His village is threatened by the oncoming militia (which is historically correct) who are sent to wipe them out to make room for empirical expansion. They need the land because it's rich in resources for farming. Consequently, this is exactly why the villagers need to stay and fight instead of just walking away to find safety.

    The tension is rising because the local witch doctor and rainmaker, who previously brought down the rain thus fertilising the ground and vital medicines from self-grown herbs, is no longer helpful but still has power over the villagers due to their staunch beliefs. So the guy has to convince not only himself of his skills at military strategy but also convince the rest of the villagers to put their faith in him as their new and more realistic confidante who will bring them peace and save their village through practical means instead of blind faith.
    But with no actual military experience or weapons training he has to use the natural surroundings which means he has to get back into touch with nature which he may have lost some time ago due to a developed cynical outlook based on rivalry with the same witch doctor.
    (Where you go then with this is up to you.)


    That's pretty much off the top of my head but there are already many levels of characterisation and levels of conflict for you to grit your teeth into and make something of it.
    Just make sure you do a little bit of research on the historical aspects, otherwise you'll only do the typical Hollywood thing of offending many people with inaccuracies.

    Good luck with your assignment.
     
  3. slipperywhenwet
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    slipperywhenwet New Member

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    Yeh that sounds pretty good mate. The idea and main focus of the story is not the battle itself but more the strategy with the battle allowing me to develop the character and allows the reader to gain a look into the type of conflicts that are not put on the news and are ignored as common place in these parts of the world. More the logic and horror behing the battle and the tension than the actual fighting itself which wouldn't turn out as a very good stor in my opinion. Cheers for the comments and i am open to any and all decisions that anybody has if they have the chanc to share them. Cheers.
     
  4. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i'm curious... what's a 'level' short story?
     
  5. slipperywhenwet
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    slipperywhenwet New Member

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    Sorry mate, I'm from good ol' England basically "A levels" are what you take after "GCSE's", the equivalent in america would be the high school tests, the last 2 years of high school. x.
     
  6. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    oh, right... if you typed it 'A-level' i'd have gotten it...
     
  7. slipperywhenwet
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    slipperywhenwet New Member

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    Yeah sorry, just lazy typing on my part. My spoken english is the same as the way i type and it isnt quite as correct or good s my written english. But never mind eh.
     

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